THE MOST LIBERATING END OF THE YEAR EXERCISE EVER

Want to start 2015 free and clear of emotional, mental, and perhaps even spiritual baggage? Then do this exercise. It will surprise you in several ways and will set you on a clean and happy path for the upcoming year.

Thanks Margo for sharing this with me so many years ago!

STEP 1: Make a list of every grief, major or minor, that others caused you this past year. List names and incidents. The more details, the more free you’ll get.

STEP 2: Add to the list any past hurts people have caused you that are still bugging you.

STEP 3: Go through the list and categorize the grievances. I’ve listed some of the categories I’ve addressed over the years, as examples to get you started:

-people not caring about other people’s feelings

-good people letting evil people rule over them

-people getting angry when confronted with the truth and trying to hide from it or ignore it

-people who use their power or position to manipulate others

-promises made that were broken

-not asking for help or even recognizing when it comes

-pushy people

STEP 4: For each of the categories ask yourself, “Have I ever acted this way toward God?”

When I did this exercise for the first time, this fourth step was a great awakening. And every year since has been a huge refreshing. I realize I am just as much of a sinner as anyone who has offended me. I acknowledge what God has forgiven me for and then I know I have no right to withhold forgiveness from anyone else. So I let them go and I forgive.

If I feel any lingering hurt or anger, I just have to give it to God. I remind Him I need some help, “God, I’m not doing so well with this, so You’re going to have to do something from there.” And of course He does.

The servant in Matthew 18:21-35 had been forgiven but then he turned around and wouldn’t forgive. The Bible tells us this unforgiveness tormented him and that’s how it is with us. As long as we don’t forgive, the disturbing thoughts are going to still be attached to us and be like arthritis or cancer, that just wants to grow, spread and take over. Doing this one small exercise is the floodgate to awesome freedom as we begin 2015.

Charge ahead! Like the Bible says, “I can do all things through Christ which strengtheneth me” (Phil 4:13).

Love, Carolyn

WINGS: A Journey in Faith –A compilation of short true narratives to entertain, inspire and enhance your spiritual growth. If you haven’t read it yet, check it out: http://www.amazon.com/s/ref=nb_sb_noss_1?url=search-alias%3Daps&field-keywords=Wings+Carolyn+Molica

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WHEN SOMEONE DOESN’T WANT YOUR HELP, IS THERE ANYTHING YOU CAN DO?

During the holidays we see family members and friends who are hurting. We try to help the best we can but sometimes it seems they just can’t receive it from us. Maybe they “know” the old us too well and it’s like Jesus when he went to Nazareth where he grew up: “He did not many mighty works there because of their unbelief” (Matt 13:58). They only knew him as the carpenter’s son, as a regular guy, not the spiritually tapped-in empowered guy he was now! God in His foreknowledge already anticipated this scenario and provided a solution. There is always something we can do.

Jesus explains it in Matthew 9:33-10:1. In verse 33 we see Jesus casting out a demon. In verse 35 we’re told he was “healing every sickness and every disease among the people.” Verse 36 tells us when he saw the multitudes, his heart went out to them. We all have these feelings of compassion and love toward friends and relatives, especially during the holidays. But we can’t help them all. Jesus said, “The harvest truly is plenteous, but the laborers are few” (v.37).

He told the people to pray that God would send other laborers into His harvest (v.38).

Then Jesus showed them how it would be done in the very next verse: He sent out other laborers besides himself (chpt.10, verse 1). He didn’t say “Schedule more meetings for me.” He didn’t say, “I have to do it all myself.” The Savior of the world, when he was here in the flesh, didn’t rely on himself to deliver and heal everyone. What an amazing concept and a really important one for us to understand.

As wonderful and powerful as Jesus was, when he was looking with love and compassion on the hurting people right there in front of him, he couldn’t help them all. When we see the people we love, and they are hurting, our hearts go out to them too. But we can’t help everyone and there’s no need to feel bad about not being able to help someone close to us. Sometimes I just have to tell myself, “I’m not their savior.”  If Jesus couldn’t heal everyone close to him, why do we think we can?

But Jesus showed us a way to help them anyway.

He showed us we are to pray for another Christ-inspired person to step in. What a wonderful and powerful thing to know and what a comfort and assurance. There’s never any guilt when it comes to love. We can always help in some way.

People respond favorably to different people. You don’t respond to everyone in the same way and neither do your loved ones. They’ll connect to someone who says the same thing you say, but when it comes from someone else it sounds so much better. That’s just the way life is; we’re all that way.

We can offer help but if it’s not taken, we can still be very effective by praying for someone else to help them.

And what will that other laborer do? Much! They will have “power against unclean spirits, to cast them out, and to heal all manner of sickness and all manner of disease” (Matt 10:1). That’s spectacular!

So don’t be discouraged this holiday season if you feel snubbed or somewhat helpless. Be encouraged; there’s power in prayer for another laborer to come in to help, when you can’t. And if you’re not being anxious about someone you care about, then you free yourself up for God to bless you even more. And God ALWAYS answers this prayer.

Love, Carolyn

STOP THE BLEEDING

During the holidays when we see relatives and we’re around new people, we’re often met with stories of circumstances that are so complicated and awful that even the heartiest of believers among us could be tempted to think there’s no solution. I’ve seen the devil pull this scenario again and again. The idea of no solution and no answer is definitely the message Satan wants to propound at a time when we’re celebrating the birth of Christ. Jesus Christ who is the answer to every problem and has the solution to every trouble, no matter how complex or seemingly incurable.

We have the Lord Jesus Christ; we have the Bible; we have angels; but sometimes we forget that we also have each other. And it’s not a sin to ask for help. In fact the Lord tells us we are to confess our faults one to another, so we can get help (James 5:16). It doesn’t do us any good to keep things bottled up inside.

If you were physically bleeding from a stab in the back, and you couldn’t stop it, you’d get yourself to the hospital and find help. It’s the same with us mentally, emotionally and spiritually. We have been given other people in the body of Christ to help stop the bleeding.

One of the biggest errors I see in the body of Christ is the hesitation to ask for help. I’m definitely guilty of that myself. Pride gets in the way and even figuring out exactly what to ask or who to ask becomes a challenge.

It can seem hard, but we need to remember that asking someone to pray for us or give Godly counsel benefits both parties. The person asking for help gets needed assistance and the person being asked gets a chance to stretch out his or her believing to manifest God’s love, maybe even in a different way than before. It’s a healing and wholesome exchange.

I believe that honesty in the body of Christ and asking for help when we need it, will bring us closer as a family. With all the challenges we face in the world today, we need the expertise of others to help us face and overcome new adversities that confront us.

Love, Carolyn

My book, WINGS: A Journey in Faith – an awesome spiritual adventure and great interactive workbook. Find it on Amazon in paperback or Kindle.  http://www.amazon.com/s/ref=nb_sb_noss_1?url=search-alias%3Daps&field-keywords=Wings+Carolyn+Molica

REBELLIOUS CAROLYN GETS A NEW NATURE IN CHRIST

My boss wanted me to paint on the sculpture’s hand but I wanted to finish what I was painting on the leg. My rebellious nature wanted me to argue and give the reason why my idea was better. But I didn’t say anything because something has changed.

That rebellious nature I’ve exhibited since a child has dissipated and I’ve watched myself take on a much more humble and yielding attitude. It’s like being outside myself looking at a totally different person. It has to be Jesus’ new nature in me because it’s certainly not the old Carolyn. I hardly recognized my new self.

On my last several jobs I found it easy to yield to my bosses and fellow workers. I’m more sensitive to their wishes. If they asked for a suggestion, I gave it, but I didn’t butt in with what I thought. And the thing is, I’m loving it. It’s fun and peaceful and rewarding and most of all, it’s not fake!

Only Jesus Christ could make that change in me so remarkable and permanent. And why it happened now instead of years ago, I can’t tell you. I’m just so pleased to see it.

I was a rebellious child, an even more rebellious teenager and it continued in my personality over the years. I think most people have issues with rebellion of one sort or another. It’s because rebellion was inherited from the first man, Adam, and it was passed down through generations in the blood.

But the birth of the second Adam, Jesus Christ (1 Cor 15:45), changed the nature of human blood for those who receive him.  Once Jesus was born, there was one man with uncontaminated, non-rebellious blood. That is a really big deal; no wonder a multitude of angels showed up and were rejoicing at His birth!

New blood and consequently a new nature was introduced on earth. Jesus didn’t get his blood from his mother, Mary, but from God. Jesus’ blood was not prone to disobedience, rebellion, pride, or other human failings.

When a person gets born again, they receive that new blood of Jesus. There are at least 19 million cells in one square inch of skin and each one is affected by blood. The pure life blood of Jesus effects every cell in us.

The old nature dies and Jesus’ nature takes over. Some things may change immediately, but others take time, but they will happen. Jesus’ meek nature was working in my blood for years until it just suddenly popped out as the new true me and I’m so much happier now. God says stay faithful. He knows that if we will continue to love Him, the gift of His son Jesus Christ will continue to bless us and change our very natures to be more like Him.

Love, Carolyn

A perfect gift for the holidays, WINGS: A Journey in Faith. It’s a compilation of short true narratives to entertain, inspire and enhance your spiritual growth. http://www.amazon.com/s/ref=nb_sb_noss_1?url=search-alias%3Daps&field-keywords=Wings+Carolyn+Molica

WHEN WE PRAY

One of the preemie twins (weighing in at just a little over 4 lbs) was having open heart surgery. I texted back that I’d pray. Then I went on to check my other texts, posts and e-mails. A few minutes went by and I caught myself, “Carolyn, you need to pray NOW!” It’s way too easy these days to go through e-mails, social network posts, texts, etc. and take the messages in as mental information without really engaging and DOING something about them. When it comes to prayer we need to change this bad habit.

Prayer is a very powerful force that gets things done and it needs to be taken seriously. Mark 11:24 says that when we pray we are to believe – right then, not later, not pray and hope there will be an answer, not pray and wish, but focus enough when we pray – focus on the answer we want – the end result. When we pray, believe. We need to stay in pray until we are convinced, persuaded, and sure that God has heard and is answering.

Too much praying has been, “If it be your will.” If we spend time in the Bible, then we won’t have to say “if” all the time, because we will know what God’s will is.

When we pray for someone it’s a serious matter. It means something. It is not casual or frivolous. According to God’s written word, prayer can heal, get people delivered from devil spirits, alter weather conditions and many more things. It’s powerful and effective.

Jane and I prayed about the baby’s heart surgery. We already knew and believed what the Bible says about children being a blessing (Ps 127:3-5). We also believed in God’s ability to work through the surgeon’s hands. We knew that the parents were standing in faith for the little girl to live and grow strong. We knew that the Bible says if two agree in prayer, God will do it (Matt 18:19). So when we prayed together we were totally persuaded God would answer – and He did. She went through the surgery with flying colors, had a speedy recovery and all the tubes were taken out in only a few days.

Prayer works. The Lord willingly and lovingly answers our prayers. So the next time someone asks for prayer on something let’s pay attention, stop a few minutes and take the time to pray. And if we ask people to pray for us, we should expect to get results too.

Love, Carolyn

A perfect gift for the holidays, WINGS: A Journey in Faith –Volume1. It’s a compilation of short true narratives to entertain, inspire and enhance your spiritual growth. http://www.amazon.com/s/ref=nb_sb_noss_1?url=search-alias%3Daps&field-keywords=Wings+Carolyn+Molica

OUR YOUTH IS RENEWED LIKE THE EAGLE’S

Today I turned 65. I’ve been blessed with great health. Partly it’s genetic, but a lot of my strength and youthfulness I attribute to quoting Psalm 103:5 every morning as I’m driving to work. It says, “He satisfies my mouth with good things so that my youth is renewed like the eagles.”

As the eagle goes through the different stages of its life, molting takes place and the new feathers are graciously provided. God created a way for this majestic bird to grow the necessary new beautiful feathers as it matures. We need the same thing, brand new feathers to keep us youthful and strong as we also mature.

In my opinion, this scripture is not only talking about God providing good physical food we can eat that can renew our youthfulness, but even more important is the bread of life God’s given us to eat—His living word. As we take the truths of the Bible into us and as we speak them out of our mouth, we get new insight, answers that weren’t there before, fresh understanding and youthful excitement.

I believe that taking delight in God’s Word, both the written word and the awesomeness of the Lord’s presence in our everyday lives keeps us strong and our youth is renewed like the eagle’s.

Love, Carolyn

A perfect gift for the holidays, WINGS: A Journey in Faith –Volume1. It’s a compilation of short true narratives to entertain, inspire and enhance your spiritual growth. http://www.amazon.com/s/ref=nb_sb_noss_1?url=search-alias%3Daps&field-keywords=Wings+Carolyn+Molica

STARTS OFF DIFFICULT, ENDS UP GREAT

I knew it was going to be rough from the minute I got in my car to go to work. The sky was overcast – Las Vegas doesn’t like bad weather. I walked into the paint shop and was pierced with the kind of cold that goes right through you.

My task for the day was to come up with the colors and a technique for making a piece of Masonite look like beautiful mahogany. I was having trouble with the basecoat—too dull and not enough red in it. I worked at it and adjusted my color again and again. I had to match the live sample as closely as possible and it just wasn’t coming together.

I’d recently purchased new shoes and I was on a cement floor for 7 ½ hours. My legs hurt, my back hurt and I was worn out. Even the Motrin wasn’t working.

My attitude was as desperate and frayed as the nerves in my back.  My mind was spiraling, but I knew if I could make it through the day I’d be okay.

At the end of my work day I was mentally exhausted but I knew I wanted to go out to the local coffee shop and get some writing done. It would be too dangerous to sit down in my easy chair at home, so I quickly made myself a sandwich and scarfed it down. I kicked off my new work shoes, changed into comfortable clothes and took off for the coffee shop with my Bible and my notebook.

My favorite table in the back was open so I sat down. But before I started my writing, I got my Bible opened to read some scripture, desperately needing some refreshing after a tough day. I turned to Psalm 107:20, “He sent his word, and healed them, and delivered them from their destructions.”

I read further. I could relate to verse 26. It described how I started my day:  “They go down again to the depths: their soul is melted because of trouble.  They reel to and fro, and stagger like a drunken man, and are at their wit’s end. Then they cry unto the Lord in their trouble.”

The next part of the scripture didn’t happen until over 8 hours later. “And he bringeth them out of their distresses.  He maketh the storm a calm, so that the waves thereof are still. Then are they glad because they be quiet; so he bringeth them unto their desired haven” (vss. 28-30).

I was finally happily embracing the warmth of the low lighting in the coffee shop, drinking a cup of freshly brewed coffee and enjoying the peace of mind after a very stressful eight hours of difficulty.

We all have days like that, but I’m so glad the Lord gets us through them. With the holidays on us, there’s plenty of situations to get stressed about, so my suggestion is that at the end of every day we take a few minutes to pray or read a scripture or two. It will really help.

Love, Carolyn

A perfect gift for the holidays, WINGS: A Journey in Faith –Volume1. It’s a compilation of short true narratives to entertain, inspire and enhance your spiritual growth. http://www.amazon.com/s/ref=nb_sb_noss_1?url=search-alias%3Daps&field-keywords=Wings+Carolyn+Molica