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Do You Use Holy Emotions?

~~ 1 Corinthians 2:4 (AMP) ~~  And my language and my message were not set forth in persuasive (enticing and plausible) words of wisdom, but they were in demonstration of the [Holy] Spirit and power [a proof by the Spirit and power of God, operating on me and stirring in the minds of my hearers the most holy emotions and thus persuading them]



by Carley Cooper 

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The Bible tells us that we are made in God’s image (Genesis 1:27 NIV).  This is not just in His physical image, but His personality and character traits as well.  We feel happiness, sadness, love, hatred, joy, anger, calm, excitement; and the list goes on.  God feels these things as well.  Since God is supreme, He is holy.  Every thought, word, and deed of His is holy; while we are not holy because we are broken through sin.  This is where we differ from God.

What are Holy Emotions?
Recently in an online forum that I take part in, a lady asked “What are holy emotions?”.  It got me thinking.  After some research this is what I came up with:  Holy emotions are what we feel when the Holy Spirit is leading our emotions, instead of following our own hearts and minds. 

Stop!  Listen!  He’s Talking!
Left to our own devices, we usually speak before we think.  Other times, we think too much before we speak and end up filtering out many of our initial emotions; including God’s voice talking to us.  What results is broken relationships, with Him and each other.

On the flip side, others also give us words and actions in return that are just as harsh.  This is one reason why we are told to guard our hearts.  People speak before listening to God’s voice, and everyone ends up getting hurt.  The pieces of our broken relationships get scattered and can’t be repaired to be as they were without God’s input.    

Love Others as He Loves You
What we should be doing is listening to the Holy Spirit.  When we do this, we speak God’s holy words, thoughts, and feelings; we express His holy emotions.  We will do what He wants us to do, and feel what He wants us to feel; instead of our own self-absorbed thoughts and feelings that we can’t take back once they’re out.  Letting God lead us means we don’t have to try to persuade others with our own wisdom.  We are not even capable of showing God’s glory without His power working through us.  Our response to other people in various situations, especially upsetting ones, is usually much different than what God’s response is.  When He works through us, we respond to circumstances and other people in love rather than anger, disappointment, or unforgiveness.  By allowing God’s holy emotions to be evident in us, our faith is resting on His power, not on our own understanding (1 Corinthians 2:5 AMP)!  Do you use holy emotions? 

Let’s Pray
 ~~ Dear God ~~  Your love is so wonderful that it’s something that I cannot truly grasp.  It’s perfect and can fix every bad situation that I get myself into; if only I would listen to You more.  Please let my emotions be Your holy emotions, so that Your love, glory, and mercy shines through.  Thank You for being patient always.  Help me to show Jesus to others all the time.  In Jesus name I pray, AMEN.

Now It’s Your Turn
Thoughts?  Questions?  Want to share your story?  Ask for prayer?  Please consider sharing in the comments section; even if the link you clicked to get here was on another site(If you’re on the homepage, click on the post headline, and scroll down to find the comments section.)

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Did You Hear the Latest News?!

~~ Ephesians 4:29 (NIV) ~~  Do not let any unwholesome talk come out of your mouths, but only what is helpful for building others up according to their needs, that it may benefit those who listen.



Photo Credit: MS Office Copyright Free Images
by Carley Cooper 

Gossip!  It’s wrong.  It hurts people.  God said not to do it.  But, it’s so much fun to do!  Resisting it, for a lot of people, means a big spiritual struggle inside.  Some justify it by saying things such as:
  • I’m not gossiping, I’m networking
  • I’m not gossiping, I’m just telling my friend about this guy I know that...
  • I’m not gossiping, I’m just asking my friend to pray for my family member who...
  • I’m not gossiping, I’m just making an observation about a co-worker.
“How Could You Say Such a Thing?”
A friend, who runs his own business, wrote a status message online saying “When you make collections calls its uncanny how often people were just talking about their bill and realized it was overdue.”  It’s a simple observation about humanity in the circumstances of owing money.  No names were mentioned.  No financial situations were described.  No private or personal information about the company or the customers was brought up.  

The response that was given in the following comments was very negative, saying that the message was inappropriate for a public forum because it’s a private matter.  My heart went out to all of them.  I felt bad for the person who wrote the status, because he had to endure the feedback.  I felt even worse for the person who left negative comments because I realized that after a lifetime of knowing this person she hasn’t changed or grown in Christ in the least.  She has a long history of being very negative toward other people all the time. 

God Loves Positive Thinkers
To be honest my first thought was “Would it really kill her to say something nice for once?”  Then, my next instinct was to run and tell a mutual friend about it.  But, I resisted.  It was a very difficult 20 minutes, as I visited with my friend.  It took everything I had to ‘bite my tongue’.  But, I did resist because it’s not right to gossip, and because I didn’t want to stoop to the levels of the negative response.  Maybe I noticed this and my feelings were so deep because of how hard I worked myself for several years to change my own thinking patterns from negative to positive.  I tend to notice negativity more now. 

God Loves Those Who Help Others
There are many bible verses that tell us about gossip and slander, and how we should conduct ourselves.   Neither the gossip nor the negative talk is right with God.   He told us in Ephesians 4:29Do not let any unwholesome talk come out of your mouths, but only what is helpful for building others up according to their needs, that it may benefit those who listen.”  Jesus is our example of how we should respond and interact with other people.  He never talked about others behind their backs. He certainly didn’t put anyone down.  He only built others up by teaching them.

I didn’t gossip about these people, when I certainly could have, and even wanted to.  I could have even injected myself into their conversation and told them exactly how I felt; but I didn’t.  I thought about God, and how He would want me to react.  The proper comeback to the status message, if the responding person felt so strongly about it would have been to send a private message; and even then she should have said things to help and build up, not tear down.  Her response to the message was more inappropriate than the status she was commenting on as being unsuitable. 

The next time you’re standing around the water cooler at work, and someone says “Did you hear the latest news?!”, how are you going to respond?  I think Thumper in the 1942 Walt Disney movie Bambi said it best “"If you can't say something nice, don't say nothing at all."

Let’s Pray
 ~~ Dear God ~~ Graceful, merciful, and loving Father; sometimes our mouths work faster than our brains can keep up.  We speak and act before we think.  We talk about others, without giving a second thought to how You would have us deal with a situation.  Thank You for being patient with me as I try to become more like Jesus.  Thank You for molding me to be like Him.  Please help me to always help others in how I act, think, and speak.  Help me, also, to keep my thinking positive so that I can reflect Jesus to those who need to see it the most.  In Jesus name I pray, AMEN.

Now It’s Your Turn
Thoughts?  Questions?  Want to share your story?  Ask for prayer?  Please consider sharing in the comments section; even if the link you clicked to get here was on another site(If you’re on the homepage, click on the post headline, and scroll down to find the comments section.)

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Whose Kingdom is it Anyway?

~~ Matthew 6:10 (NIV) ~~ your kingdom come, your will be done, on earth as it is in heaven.




Jesus told us how to pray by giving us the Lord’s Prayer.  I recently came upon the question “Whose kingdom is it?”.  It got me thinking about the part that says ‘your kingdom come’.  The kingdom of God... it is HIS kingdom; right?

But, Do You Really Know What it All Means?
Many a book has been written explaining the Lord’s Prayer.  Some of us pray it every day; others, more than once a day.  We even pray it out of habit when we don’t know what else to pray.  We can repeat the words without even paying attention to what we’re saying.    

Your Kingdom Will Indeed Come
We are born into this world, thanks to God.  We have to live here so that we can be molded to be like Jesus.  Then we have to leave and (for Christians) go to spend eternity with God.  He created this amazing kingdom here on earth, and the one to come so we could live with Him; so we could love Him, and He to love us.  In essence, He created the kingdom for us.  So is it His kingdom or is it ours?
Psalm 93:1-5 (NIV) says “The Lord reigns, he is robed in majesty; the Lord is robed in majesty and armed with strength; indeed, the world is established, firm and secure.  Your throne was established long ago; you are from all eternity.  The seas have lifted up, Lord, the seas have lifted up their voice; the seas have lifted up their pounding waves.  Mightier than the thunder of the great waters, mightier than the breakers of the sea— the Lord on high is mighty.  Your statutes, Lord, stand firm; holiness adorns your house for endless days.
God is Holy
God created the earth, heavens, universe, and everything and everyone in them.  He is perfect, all-knowing, merciful, graceful, and faithful.  He is love.  He is supreme.  We are not even capable of understanding just how loving and absolute He is.  Human beings need Him for everything.  So, yes it is His kingdom; and we should all be proud and excited to be His children.  You are a child of the one true King; and heir with Jesus.  We get to go live with Him in His perfect kingdom!

Let’s Pray
 ~~ Dear God ~~  You are so mighty, perfect, and holy.  My feeble attempts and praise and worship don’t do You justice.  Thank You that I am Your Child.  I am royalty of the one true King.  Thank You for Your kingdom; and the inheritance that You have in store for me; for all of us.  Please help me to praise and worship You in every thought, word, and deed.  Hold me accountable so that I don’t fall off track.  I am very much looking forward to living in Your kingdom with Jesus.  In Jesus name, AMEN.

Now It’s Your Turn
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Whose Fault is It Really?

~~ Matthew14:31 (NIV) ~~ Immediately Jesus reached out his hand and caught him. “You of little faith,” he said, “why did you doubt?”



A couple years ago I went through a very bad Bipolar Disorder episode.  It was six months long.  I thought it would never end.  It was triggered by an upsetting event in my life, and was the worst episode that I had ever experienced (before or since).  At times I was sure that I wouldn’t survive it.  Other times, I was just as sure that God had deserted me.  Why did I have to suffer so badly for so long?  I came close to walking out on my whole life, my church, and everyone that loves me.  I wanted to disappear to a place where no one knew me.  I thought this would make my troubles disappear as well.  

Everybody Goes Through Storms in Life
Sometimes in the midst of those storms it feels like you’re all alone trying to survive.  It’s during these times, our weakest moments, we start to wonder if God is even there.  Is He listening?  Did He forget about me?  Why am I going through this?  Did he fall asleep and leave me to fend for myself?  Ever feel like screaming “Wake up Lord!”?  
 
Jesus Cares for You
Like it or not, the reason we feel this way is because we’re trying to calm our own storms when we should be looking to Jesus.  It’s our responsibility to go to Him and ask for help.  We lose sight of Him because Satan distracts us.  We are blinded and it’s because we allow the enemy to do it.  We control Christ in our lives.  We have the choice to let Him in or keep Him out.  We have the freedom to accept Satan’s lies.  It’s our choice. 

One day the disciples were in the boat with Jesus, they got upset thinking that Jesus didn’t care because He had fallen asleep in the midst of a terrible storm.  We do the same thing all the time.  We want to blame Him.  What we don’t often realize is that it’s our choice to ask and accept help from Jesus.  

Jesus will Never Leave You
When we ask for His help we have to be honest, sincere, and truthful; with ourselves as much as with Him.   It wasn’t until I truly listened to God and let Him lead me that I finally got out of that terrible never-ending episode.  God loves me; and you!  He will NEVER leave us, but first we have to go to Him and ask for help.  Another day when the disciples were with Jesus, Peter walked on the water toward Jesus.  He started to sink after he took his eyes off Jesus.  You have to turn to Jesus and trust Him.  Then He will lead you out of the storm.  He won’t throw you a lifeline unless you look to him and have the faith it takes that He can and will save you.

Let’s Pray
 ~~ Dear God ~~  You are so loving, faithful, and merciful.  So often I try to run my life like I truly have the strength and knowledge to do so; even though I don’t.  I don’t turn to You when I should.  Instead, I turn to You only when I want something or when I get in trouble and need rescuing.  Then I wonder where You are when I’m not doing so well.  Thank You for your perfect love.  Thank You for never abandoning me.  Thank You for Your leading.  Please help me to have faith that You are with me always and that You will indeed rescue me.  I pray in Jesus name, AMEN.

Now It’s Your Turn
Thoughts?  Questions?  Want to share your story?  Ask for prayer?  Please consider sharing in the comments section; even if the link you clicked to get here was on another site(If you’re on the homepage, click on the post headline, and scroll down to find the comments section.)

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What Quenches Your Thirst?

~~ John 4:14 (NIV) ~~  But whoever drinks the water I give them will never thirst. Indeed, the water I give them will become in them a spring of water welling up to eternal life.






Ever have one of those moments when a big revelation hits you?  I like those.  I had one of those moments recently.  Something that I thought was one thing turned out to be something else completely. 

It’s a Life Altering Eye-opener
I’ve never been one to hide the fact that I struggle with loneliness.  I’m single and I hate it.  My whole being longs for a husband... or so I thought.  I read a devotional message called Letting God Fill My Empty Places by Renee Swope of Proverbs 31Ministries.  It suddenly hit me that the soul wrenching thirst that I’m feeling is not for a husband.  It’s for Jesus.  I want more of Him. 

Jesus Can Quench the Thirst
When Jesus talked to the woman at the well, He told her that He could give her living water that would quench her thirst so that she would not thirst again.  She was at the well to draw water when what she really needed more was to a relationship with the Holy Spirit. 

Happiness is a Choice
That’s not to say that God doesn’t have it in His plans for me to remarry some day.  I firmly believe that it will happen.  But, first I have to let God transform me.  He has to prepare me to be not only the woman that He wants me to be but the woman that my future husband will need me to be.  I just have to keep reminding myself that happiness is a choice.  I am right were God wants me to be at this moment.  Happiness is not a destination; it is the journey.  Jesus is the destination.

Are you sure that what you long for is what you really want?  What truly quenches your thirst?  The answer may surprise you.

Let’s Pray
 ~~ Dear God ~~  Thank You ever faithful, always loving Father for knowing what it is we really need.  You know us better than we know ourselves.  So often we think we know everything and what we really need when in fact it is simply a want.  Help me to quench my thirst in Jesus only, and not in other things or other people.  In Jesus name, AMEN.

Now It’s Your Turn
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2013 Year in Review

~~ 2Timothy 1:7 (KJV) ~~ For God hath not given us the spirit of fear; but of power, and of love, and of a sound mind.



Carley on Bitstrips!
Another year has gone by.  How was your 2013?  Was it good?  Not so great?  Did you accomplish your goals?  Make any new friends?  Did you make any great memories with your loved ones?  Did you get closer to God?

The High’s & the Low’s
For me, some things have stayed the same; I’m still single, I’m still overweight (instead of losing weight, I gained), I still don’t have a car, Jesus hasn’t returned yet, and my hair still frustrates me.  Then there were some really upsetting points; I lost my dog that was 14 years old.  I also lost 2 friends (both young men) and my uncle; all to cancer.  Those were the low points of 2013.  However, there were many things that changed in 2013; and most of them were great changes.

There’s a Facebook feature that takes the 20 biggest moments from all your posts from last year and puts them into one thread called “2013 Year in Review”.  I have to say that it was interesting to see the items on the list.  Some of them I had already forgotten about.  It makes me wonder about the items that didn’t make the list.  I also wonder how Facebook seems to be able to determine so accurately from your posts what ones are the big and important ones.  But I guess that is a discussion for another day.  It made me realize that 2013 was a very good year; at least incomparison to 2012.  In that year I had a bad 6 month Bipolar Disorder episode with a series of breakdowns, I thought I was going crazy for certain, I had lots of medication changes, and one of my best friendships ended; and that was just for starters.  

During this year that just ended my high points included:

  • I was featured on SparkPeople.com as a Spark People Motivator
  • An articlewas written and published about me in the HuffingtonPost Canada, Living section
  • I finished my manuscript ‘Cocoa with Jesus
  • I moved into a house where I get to be close to my family all the time
  • I got a new puppy (a wonderful little Shih-Tzu that I’ve called Maggie)
  • My doctors and I have found a fantastic medication cocktail that has kept my Bipolar Disorder stable all year long
  • I went to the most wonderful women’s weekend women’s retreat where I made some new friends and had an amazing experience getting closer to God (Plus I won a wonderful handmade quilt on a raffle ticket)
  • I got to do another short public speaking engagement about my weight loss and healthy living journey (watch the video here)
  • I won a contest and my prize was 16 books by Christian authors
  • I went to Scarborough, Ontario and spend some way overdue quality time with my BFF
  • I made a big decision that, after many years, I want to return to work because I am well enough to do that fianally (part time, to start)
  • And the sprinkles on the ‘sundae’ was discovering Bitstrips!  (LOL)
Power, Love, and a Sound Mind; They’re Good Things
Unlike 2012, this past year was a pleasant year.  All these things I see as blessings from God.  I got closer to Him this year.  I’ve overcome some of my fears, and my faith has grown along with God’s peace within me.  As a result my power and love have grown, and most of all the realization that no matter what my diagnosis is I have a sound mind.  

Focus on Jesus and You Will Be Blessed
So what about you?  What were your highlights, and your lowlights?  No matter what, God is with you and He wants to get closer to you.  As you look back at your 2013, have you grown from the past years?  Did you get to be more like Jesus?  Keep your eye on Him and you will grow and be blessed.  

Let’s Pray
~~ Dear God ~~ You are so graceful, loving, and merciful that I cannot even wrap my mind around it.  So often I try to live my life without looking to You for guidance.  Thank You for never giving up on me, and for helping me to grow and be blessed from year to year.  Please help me to continue growing to become more like Jesus with each passing year.  I pray this in Jesus name, AMEN.

Now It’s Your Turn
Thoughts?  Questions?  Want to share your story?  Ask for prayer?  Please consider sharing in the comments section; even if the link you clicked to get here was on another site(If you’re on the homepage, click on the post headline, and scroll down to find the comments section.)

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