For a Monday, this has been an exciting day. Errands that were actually kind of fun to run and then a pop in from Peggy. Trying to get a few loose ends tied up around here and then looking forward to a good book. I am going to fight the sleepies and not take a nap. My nap yesterday went too long which resulted in me staying up too late last night.
I got to thinking this morning about my blog post yesterday and what else I might add to help my friend's friend. The second thing I would share with my friend's friend after guard you heart is the word fill. Fill your life with good things. I'm not talking about shopping or anything along a material bent. No, I would share this:
I pray that God, the source of hope, will fill you completely with joy and peace because you trust in him. Then you will overflow with confident hope through the power of the Holy Spirit.
Let the message about Christ, in all its richness, fill your lives. Teach and counsel each other with all the wisdom he gives. Sing psalms and hymns and spiritual songs to God with thankful hearts.
If she doesn't fill her mind with the things of Christ, the words and statements she's heard all through the years would be ever so happy to fill her mind. For years I believed my father when he told me that the only work I would ever be qualified to do was being a nanny or working as the tea cart lady at the cafeteria. Believe me those words resonated in me all through school and I didn't even think I should give any attention to homework and such because I certainly knew how to put ice in glasses and fill a glass with water or ice tea. To be told that I would never fit in and that I'd be the type that was on the outside always looking in and had that point emphasized time and again,by locking me out of the house for me to sit in the yard and watch my family get along splendidly without me. I would think that her loved one probably has all the symptoms of needing control, no requiring control, just like mine. As a child my father took me clothes shopping, not my mother. Time and again we would be at a store in Meyerland Center looking at school clothes and he would come to me and say, the saleslady just told me the clothes on this rack are for cute little girls and she told me you were ugly and must shop over there on the sale rack. Words like that have a lot of power in them, but happily and most thankfully I can say, But God! When I was saved at the age of 16, He surrounded me with such strong Christian friends and older women who did the hard work of helping me overcome all these thoughts that had resulted in my habit of low self esteem and not wanting God to be my heavenly and loving Father. I was just fine with Jesus, thank you. It wasn't an easy journey and it took time for me to actually believe that God was a good God. He didn't lie, He didn't tell untruths, He wasn't mean just to be mean and that He had a plan with hope for my life. I would share these examples with her only to show that we all have had hurts and difficulties in life that are hard and certainly unfair. If needed I would tell her things that aren't for blog publication but only to help her see that God can take those hurts and fears and fill you with joy and peace. It will probably take time but one day that joy and peace will overflow with confident hope through the power of the Holy Spirit. Jesus' message, His rich message will fill her and out of that overflow comes wisdom, counsel and teaching...helping others. Out that abundance one can sing psalms and hymns and spiritual songs to God with thankful hearts.
Another word I'd share on a more practical level would be, don't hang around people whose lives are filled with fear and insecurity. People who are not actively seeking God and wanting to be more like Christ. Some people get too used to the feelings of fear and insecurity and their words, decisions, and actions radiate fear and it will harm her walk in becoming healthy and whole. I've noticed several things in this, nothing she ever does will meet their high level because if she can be or do anything better than the insecure and fear-filled people, they will pull her down because any victory is an affront to them.
If she feels like she doesn't have any good or close friends I would share with her to be the type of friend to others like she is looking for.. Don't ever stop sowing the seeds of friendship. You never know the unlikely friendships that will happen because God is weaving and knitting hearts together. On our Biltmore trip Dena and I would talk every morning with Edward. He shared with Dena and then with me that he was a brother in Christ and his heart and passion is to serve others. Long about Wednesday he asked us if we'd been friends our whole life. No, we told him we have been friends for about 11 years and Dena also shared with him how unlikely in the natural world that she and I would be friends, much less even want to hang out with each other. But God, He knew. What a testimony to God's hope, joy, peace and wisdom to Edward. What a wonderful way to encourage him. On our last morning at the Inn, we were having our breakfast and we'd been seated in an out of the way portion of the dining room. Isn't God so good! We were able to talk with him a little more without getting him in trouble. He shared with us that still even in the deep south there is still that line between races and he shared how he felt like God had shown up in our conversations and for him, took that 'race' concern away. We were so blessed by Edward and really Dena could be telling this story much better than me. Fill your life with the Word and fill your life with people that glorify God. Fill you life with the good ways and paths.