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Mixed Blessings

~~ 2 Corinthians 4:16-18 (NIV84) ~~  Therefore we do not lose heart. Though outwardly we are wasting away, yet inwardly we are being renewed day by day. For our light and momentary troubles are achieving for us an eternal glory that far outweighs them all. So we fix our eyes not on what is seen, but on what is unseen. For what is seen is temporary, but what is unseen is eternal.



by Carley Cooper

Carley's Traditional Holiday Cheesecake
Photo by Carley.  All copyrights reserved.
So, you’ve finally purchased that dream home; but it’s huge and now you have to keep it clean, heated in the winter, cool in the summer, and the lawn kept looking great.  It’s practically a full time job.  However, your family is so happy living there!  Or, maybe you had a rich uncle that passed away and left you millions; but it didn’t last long because your extended family and long lost friends that you didn’t know you had asked for so many handouts.  Nevertheless, you feel great about helping others.  Possibly you’ve finally let yourself have that cheesecake on the dessert menu at your favorite restaurant; but now you have to work out twice as long tomorrow to make up for it.  On the other hand, it tasted super yummy!  Some things in life bring just as much heartache as they do pleasures.  Ever wonder if it’s worth it?  Is the higher pay, benefit package, and rubbing elbows with the brass in your promotion at work really worth having to put up with a longer commute, road rage, and spending half the time with your family as you used to? 

Now and then it crosses my mind to wonder about some things in my life.  Such as my blog writing, getting close to others, or writing a book about my life to share with the world.  Is it all truly worth it?  I know that God led me to do this ministry that I’ve called Worship Melodies (that story in a future post).  It is a privilege and a joy to show God’s glory, grace and mercy by sharing my stories.  I get told all the time that I am blessing people.  You just have to go back through my posts and read the comments by followers to know that’s true.  I am honestly humbled so often because of what my readers say to me.  But, much of the time, for me to write that well; to share a story that has such a great lesson that it touches people so deeply, it usually means I have to go through a dark period.  I end up feeling depressed, alone, lonely, rejected.  That’s where my message come from.  It’s what  Worship Melodies is all about; sharing the lessons I’ve learned along the way in order to show God’s wonderful love.  Then, there’s the fact that I’ve always had a very hard time making and keeping friends, and holding on to relationships.  If you read my post called The Path of Least Resistance, you’ll know that difficulty keeping relationships together is fairly standard for those of us with Bipolar Disorder.  I long to have close connections, to have a commitment from someone, to feel like a friend loves me unconditionally and won’t snub or judge me no matter what.  We are made for relationship, but the truth is that people do judge, reject, and put conditions or their own agenda on a friendship.  When that happens, it sends me into a tail spin that I often can’t get out of alone without help from my doctors and medications.  Also, I’m in the midst of writing a book about my life; one that, again, I know God led me to write.  But, is sharing my life; the details of the bad stuff along with the good things, with the world really a smart idea?  Such openness will leave me more vulnerable than I’ve ever been.  Am I strong enough to handle it?

Well, you don’t have to doubt any more people.  That’s because God assures us in  2 Corinthians 4:16-18 that we are not to lose heart.  Though on the outside things look dark, the truth is that on the inside we are being renewed.  He says that all our troubles are actually just momentary problems that will be all worth it when we gain eternal blessings as a result of them.  We are not to focus on the temporary things that we can see.  Instead we are to focus on the eternal things that we cannot see.  As a matter of fact, God tells us in James 1:2-4 (NKJV) that we are to “count it all joy when you fall into various trials, knowing that the testing of your faith produces patience.  But let patience have its perfect work, that you may be perfect and complete, lacking nothing.”  He also tells us in 1 Peter 4:12-13 (NKJV)Beloved, do not think it strange concerning the fiery trial which is to try you, as though some strange thing happened to you; but rejoice to the extent that you partake of Christ’s sufferings, that when His glory is revealed, you may also be glad with exceeding joy.”  No matter how miserable we feel in our current situation, it is nothing compared to the “glory that will be revealed in us” (Romans 8:18 (NIV84)).  Jesus promises us in Matthew 11:28-30 (NIV84) that if we come to Him when we are carrying our burdens that He will give us rest.  I don’t need to wonder if I’m strong enough to handle future events.  Jesus is with me.  God led me to this place, and He will lead me through it as well. 

Even when you’re sick and you have to wonder if the ‘cure’ is worse than the disease; just know that the struggle will be so worth it.  Though we may not see it now, in a mixed blessing as long as you focus on Jesus the disadvantages will never outweigh the blessings.



~~ Dear God ~~  Though sometimes it is difficult to see, I know that the blessings far outweigh the negative things.  I am being moulded to be like Christ, to produce fruits of the spirit, and to glorify You.  I am also learning not to sin, to help others, and I am getting stronger in my endurance and faith with each day that passes.  I am being prepared to walk into Your Kingdom.  Thank You for this journey, Lord, that You are leading me on and through.  In Jesus name, AMEN.



27 comments :

  1. Write the Book... you are a super individual and a very motivating person! Spread the word!
    You won't be sorry!
    Ray

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    1. Ha... thank you Ray for the awesome feedback, support and encouragement. You are a bright spot for me. I have my 1st draft done. I finished it 2 weeks ago. Now I'm reading through it to prepare for my editing and re-writes. It's so exciting, and a little nerve wrecking at the same time. 1st draft = 410 pages; Word count = 132,056. I have no publisher or agent yet but I'm keeping faith in God to bring me those things when I need them. Anyway, I know I have at least a one man cheering section. hehehe Thanks so much. Blessings to you. HUGS.

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    2. 4kwalk on Spark peopleMay 08, 2012

      Hi Carley,
      If God has led you to write this book He has led or is leading right now a publisher to publish this book. I'm sorry that I don't know too much about the Bipolar condition but my son-in-law suffers from severe depression and I know how difficult it is for him, his wife (my daughter) and their three children. She constantly relies on the Lord and says "God is in control."
      I pray He will give you peace and joy as you continue with your writing.
      Remember God said He would NEVER leave us nor forsake us." Hebrews 13:5b

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    3. Thanks 4K for the support and encouragement. If you read one of my posts from last month called "The Path of Least Resistance" you'll find a list of resources that can help you understand Bipolar more (Characteristics, Articles, Videos, Documentaries, a woman's Video Blog). It's a good list. I hope it can help. Blessings to you and your family. HUGS.

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    4. When you're ready God will provide! Christian publishers aren't as hard as best sellers i'm told. God is definitely in your corner... You're a fantastic writer!

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    5. I am a lyric writer... I don't have much time lately to complete what I've started!

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    6. Thanks Ray for the encouragement. You're a great friend. Time is an issue often with writers. Interviewed an author friend a while back and asked her what was the hardest part about being a writer and she said that any writer will tell you the hardest part is to make yourself sit down and do it! LOL She's right. Blessings to you as always. HUGS.

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  2. MI-ELLKAYBEEMay 08, 2012

    I'm blessed to be able to look at that and not want it.

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    1. LOL God is good! I'm glad you don't have the temptations. Blessings to you. HUGS.

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  3. ANGELREJOICES54May 08, 2012

    you are so right. but one thing I do know is there is only One who paid the Ultimate
    price tag for our lives! Jesus thank you Lord Jesus for my life.

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    1. Thank you so much. Jesus paid the ultimate price. Truthfully we are not even capable of truly wrapping our minds around it. One day, though we will when we're with Him. AMEN. Blessings to you. HUGS.

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  4. LILETHISKIND1May 08, 2012

    praise the Lord! :-D :-D :-D :-D Way to Go!

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    1. Thanks LILETHISKIND1 for the feedback. I hope you are blessed by it. Blessings to you and your family. HUGS.

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  5. To be honest: yeah, I think that many Blessings will sometimes not seem like it, but I think that they are worth the cost. Living my life thae way that it was commanded, my belief in God is the cost. I will never change that: I love Jesus!

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    1. Thanks for the feedback. I hope you are blessed by it. Blessings to you and your family. HUGS.

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  6. SPARKLISEMay 08, 2012

    So true.
    There is a price to pay no matter what we do.
    If I follow a food plan, I can't eat what I want whenever I want,but I lose weight.
    If I eat what I want whenever I want , I don't feel deprived,but I gain weight.

    Which one of the 2 payoffs do I want the most?

    I think it's like that for every decision we take.

    With God, we might not see the payoff right away,but we know that we will be rewarded someday.
    You are not taking the easy way out, and even though it might be hard now, i think you will not regret making the decisions you are making.
    Keep up the good work!
    Hugs Hugs

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    1. Thanks so much. One day we will get a bigger reward than we are even capable of imagining. AMEN. BIG BLESSINGS to you and your family. HUGS.

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  7. Thank you

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    1. Thanks for the feedback. I hope you are blessed by it. Blessings to you and your family. HUGS.

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  8. SANDRALEETMay 09, 2012

    God gives us rain and sunshine in our life .We have to make the best we can with Gods help in our life.He has a plan we do not all ways under stand.Put in time it becomes clear.

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    1. Thank you so much for the feedback. God does indeed have a plan. And, I haven't once came out the other end without thinking that His plan worked out so much better than mine would have. lol Praise Him. Blessings to you. Hugs.

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  9. LADYROSE49May 09, 2012

    Thank you! Carley. That cheese cake looks Yummy!! :-P

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    1. Thanks. I hope I'm not sending anyone into the sin of temptation by posting that photo. LOL Blessings to you. HUGS.

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    2. LADYROSE49May 09, 2012

      You are not...I will use self control. ;-)

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    3. Glad to hear that. Keep faith for your self control. :-) Hugs.

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  10. AnonymousMay 10, 2012

    Thank you, Carley. Your cheesecake looks super delicious!

    I’m so glad your bible studies and reflections bring about such great worship for all of us. The world will continually disappoint us because of our sin. Through our worship (whether it be at work or play), we strive to continue to accept the call we have to love the Lord with all that we have, love others, and love ourselves (afterall, we’re made in God’s image). These verses you share today hold such incredible promises for us. -- Evelyn

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    1. Thanks Evelyn for the wonderful feedback as always. I hope you have a very blessed Mother's Day weekend. HUGS.
      Here's the recipe for that cheesecake!
      http://recipes.sparkpeople.com/recipe-detail.asp?recipe=460435

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