friendship, Holy Spirit, listen, patience, relationships, grace, Oh Lord Help Us, Christian, women, mentor, ministry

Listen: Hearing Other’s Pain through the Power of the Holy Spirit

We often try to fix those we love instead of allowing a safe space to exist and be heard. Helping others in pain requires us to listen through the power of the Holy Spirit. 



Understand this, my dear brothers and sisters: You must all be quick to listen, slow to speak, and slow to get angry.

James 1:19, NLT

Making sure others feel comfortable when we interact is one of my greatest desires. I want them to feel the freedom to occupy space as their true selves. Feeling safe with someone allows for a deeper strengthening of friendship. I’m not going to say I have it all together because I don’t, but one way I ensure this result is through listening. Sincerely listening.

I’m still learning how to truly hear those around me. To hear through the Holy Spirit and not through human methods. Because, let’s face it, all the distractions, screens, noises, and even selfishness get in the way. Listening takes discipline and an immense amount of patience…

We try to fix those we love instead of allowing a safe space to exist and be heard. Helping others in pain requires us to listen through the Holy Spirit. Women of Faith | Spiritual Growth | Scripture Study | Christian Mentoring | Daily Devotional #listen #devotional #scripture #holyspirit #friendship #relationships

Selfishness

Many times in my life I’ve been told I’m a great listener, which you think would cause great pride inside. In reality, I selfishly carry it around like a burden… I’m easy to talk to because I’m silent. When do I get to speak??

See, selfish. On the outside, I sit silently, making eye contact and nodding. While on the inside, I am screaming to be heard; creating comebacks, forming opinions, preparing the right words to say. This is NOT active listening; NOT listening as God commands us to listen.

We all have this innate desire to be heard, to be allowed space to exist. But God asks us to lay ourselves down to allow His Spirit room to breathe. To give us supernatural patience to hear; truly hear. He is the very best part of us, and He is the very answer for loving those who are hurting…

Don’t be selfish; don’t try to impress others. Be humble, thinking of others as better than yourselves. Don’t look out only for your own interests, but take an interest in others, too.

Philippians 2:3-4, NLT

Deeply Listen

Undistracted, uninterrupted, completely attuned… Not everyone is a natural at this and not everyone can pick this habit up quickly. I definitely struggle. I still find myself interrupting my friends. -sigh- I know how much I can’t stand to be interrupted.

Fools have no interest in understanding; they only want to air their own opinions.

Proverbs 18:2, NLT

Half listening, then interjecting to fix a problem with human words is foolish. Our attempts to ‘be there’ for our friends is sometimes overshadowed by our want to ‘fix them. To make their life ‘right’ and easy. It’s honorable, we think it’s out of love, but it’s not helpful. It’s not Spirit-led.

Some of my closest friends have come by way of just listening. Not trying to have all the answers, not trying to have the perfect words, but saying ‘My heart hurts with yours.’ There’s a tenderness when a friend will silently and intently listen to your words; deeply listen. This exemplifies God as He bends down from Heaven to listen to our cries (Psalm 116:1-6).

Language Between

I cannot tell you the countless times I’ve skimmed over deep pain in my heart, only to have a friend hear it’s depth and speak truth to it. There’s language between the verbal words and the silence. Silence can give just as much, sometimes more, information than hearing. Hearing the entire language of hurt prepares our hearts and minds to speak from a posture of wisdom.

Our inability to shut our mouths does a disservice to those who are hurting. In our attempts to break awkward silences and fill the space with noise, we block potential Holy Spirit work. Whether the work is in us, in the other person, or both. Leaving space for the Spirit to move, may give us discernment, as the listener, to hear the words that haven’t been spoken. To understand the words under the words.

Trust

When we actively and truly listen, we prove our love. Not just our love for the other individual, but our love for God. Not waiting for a chance to be heard, but laying down our selfishness. Selfless listening, Holy Spirit listening is powerful. Allowing the other person space to exist to be who they are in that moment cultivates confidence; trust.

And from this trust, we have a unique ability to point the pain to our Savior. Because there’s no amount of pain, human circumstance, or issue that has not already been healed through the blood of Jesus.

Selfless listening, Holy Spirit listening is powerful. When we actively and truly listen, we prove our love. Not just our love for the other individual, but our love for God. Click To Tweet

We try to fix those we love instead of allowing a safe space to exist and be heard. Helping others in pain requires us to listen through the Holy Spirit. Women of Faith | Spiritual Growth | Scripture Study | Christian Mentoring | Daily Devotional #listen #devotional #scripture #holyspirit #friendship #relationships

Romello Williams

love, relationships, God's love, pure, Oh Lord Help Us, Christian, women, mentor, ministry

Intentions: Learning to Desire God’s Pure Love Above All

Desiring a partner is natural, but we must examine our intentions before we enter into relationships. We must learn to desire God’s love above all. 



Boys, boys, boys. Oh boy. I’m sure it’s no surprise that I, a teenager, am writing about boys. But let me ask you this, am I the only age group who longs for a friend who’s more than a friend?

Eve was made for Adam as a partner and friend so don’t we all, as females, naturally have a desire for a counterpart? My personal struggle confuses the desire for another half with my delusional “need” for one.

Lust and love are vastly different yet look exactly alike. Loneliness and true longing are like night and day, yet wear the same colors. I find it difficult to see the differences between all of these so please join me as I work towards Christ’s desires for me rather than intentions of the flesh.

Desiring a partner is natural, but we must examine our intentions before we enter into relationships. We must learn to desire God's love above all. Women of Faith | Spiritual Growth | Scripture Study | Christian Mentoring | Daily Devotional #love #devotional #scripture #pure #relationships

A Perfect Plan

First, I’d like to tackle what God says about this. I feel it’s only smart to start with truth and unravel lies and misconceptions from there. Ecclesiastes 4:9-10 states that two are better than one. If one falls the other will be there to help them up. Genesis 2:4 talks about a man holding fast to his wife. We were made for this. We were made from and for love.

Who can find a virtuous woman? For her price is far above rubies.

Proverbs 31:10, KJV

Another verse I’ve loved digging into. We are a prize. Not a just helper; not a servant; a prize. We are precious and destined for love. We are helpers, not slaves. It’s easy to accept society’s view of women when we, as an entire gender, are a part of this society. The society that tells us what and who we are. However, God says I am a prize, you are a prize, and we are all precious.

Intentions

It’s a natural thing to want a boyfriend. So why do I abstain? This is something I struggle with quite often. Boys are cute and funny, but how much of my desire for one is righteous? Do I want a boy because I’m made for that companionship or because he’ll make me happy? Because he will fulfill the needs of my flesh, not my soul?

My main reason for withholding, aside from my age and stage in life, is because I often find myself caught between the right and the wrong reasons. My intentions are less than holy. Now, of course, we have to take into consideration the fact that a large majority of teenage boys have the mentality and brain capacity of my eleven-year-old brother. But how long can we, how long can I, make excuses for my own shortcomings and confusion?

I think it’s good to realize a lack of righteous intentions, but I find myself stuck on this plateau. Step one… I recognize I have a desire for a boyfriend. Step two… realize that I often want one for the wrong reasons. For fulfillment of the flesh and not Christ’s plan. Step three… well, I haven’t gotten this far. Before I journey into how I am to move forward, I’d like to bring out some old memories and share them with you.

Story Time

Freshman year of high school was when dating became a real thing for me. We were past the stage of telling a boy I thought he was cute. Although, I’m afraid I must confess that I hid these “relationships” from my parents for quite some time.

The first boy was sweet and funny but highlighted my lack of maturity it took to actually have a boyfriend. The second one didn’t talk to me for a week when I decided that’s not what I needed in my life. The third one came around when I was spiraling into depression and self-harm. He was mentally and sexually abusive and cheated on me several times with a number of girls. I wouldn’t discover this until after the second time I dated him. After I was able to convince myself I deserved more I ended up going back to boy number two from freshman year. He then sexually harassed me and we didn’t last more than a weekend.

After all of this, I was tired of boys. I was tired of accepting less than I deserved. Then comes along another one towards the end of my sophomore year. He and I started spending more time together and he then broke it off with his at the time girlfriend. We got very close, very fast. And if he hadn’t ended it due to my mental issues being “too much” (turns out he just wanted to hook up with my friend), he would’ve been my first love. But instead, he was my first horrible heartbreak.

True Love

All this being said, I struggle greatly with the aspect of love because I’ve been fooled into thinking I’d found it several times. I know I’m not the only one out there who’s had their heart played and their worth questioned. So, going back to step three, I implore you to keep looking.

This is how we’ve come to understand and experience love: Christ sacrificed his life for us.

1 John 3:16, MSG

Christ didn’t endure all the hate to just give up. No, He still went to the cross despite all our false perceptions of love and now we can find real, true, undying love. Search for Christ. Find Christ. You’ll find love in Him. Through Him, you’ll find a Man who’ll encourage you in truth, not the desires of this broken world. Dance with God. He’ll let the right man cut in.

Jesus still went to the cross despite all our false perceptions of love. Now, we can find real, true, undying love. Search for Christ. Find Christ. You'll find love in Him. Click To Tweet

Desiring a partner is natural, but we must examine our intentions before we enter into relationships. We must learn to desire God's love above all. Women of Faith | Spiritual Growth | Scripture Study | Christian Mentoring | Daily Devotional #love #devotional #scripture #pure #relationships

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home, community, fellowship, alone, mentoring, Christian, scripture, Oh Lord Help Us

Home: Five Tips for Building Community Where We Are

Where we feel the most at home, isn’t always where we end up. Often times, it takes our own will power to seek out and build community where we land.



There’s something about going “home”. I love returning to the place of my childhood. Especially in the summer. I was able to return to Indiana this past weekend, and so many things made me miss my home state. The cool grass on my bare feet, the summer breeze that rarely happens in the South, the tall corn fields that make me feel protected. When I close my eyes, I can feel and smell and sense that this is home.

Community

Those pleasing sensations really do make me miss my home. But, when I close my eyes, I also see the community we left behind. Most of my family lives there, our beautiful church family, the friends I made as an adult, long-time family friends. The deepest parts of my soul, long for familiar community again.

I left a piece of myself, a piece of my heart, in all those I cherish.

With community comes a sense of belonging, a sense of purpose. There is confidence that no matter the season of life, we are not physically alone. When one is weak, the other is strong (Ecclesiastes 4:10).

Where we feel the most at home, isn't always where we end up. Often times, it takes our own willpower to seek out and build community where we land. Women of Faith | Spiritual Growth | Scripture Study | Christian Mentoring | Daily Devotional

Home Alone

When we moved to North Carolina, it was easy for me to seclude myself. I have a hard enough time making relationships, let alone attempting this while grieving the loss of my community. No one was checking up on me. No one making sure I was going to church or getting involved. This is dangerous for someone who is prone to hermit-hood…

Just let me be in my house, my safe place, and I’m happy. Or am I?

And the Lord God said, “It isn’t good for man to be alone; I will make a companion for him, a helper suited to his needs.”

Genesis 2:18, ESV

God knew, even from the beginning, man should not be left alone. It’s not healthy for us to be alone, left to our own thoughts and plans. We need companionship. We need community.

It's not healthy for us to be alone, left to our own thoughts and plans. We need companionship. We need community. Click To Tweet

Building Fellowship

Fellowship isn’t always effortless. There are times we have to be diligent in creating it, but as I said before, I tend to be a hermit. I’m learning to break through this personality flaw. It’s only taken me 4 years to realize I have had the power all along. Through prayer, God is showing me ways I can stretch…He always answers prayers. Here are the areas He’s laid on my heart:

Go to church and get involved…

When we exhausted all the church options in our new area, we found that the effortlessness of our old church was very rare. I was not prepared to have to put effort into feeling like we belonged somewhere. I thought we would just fit right in, in the right church. Thus, creating a horrible habit of not even attending church. We are still working on fixing this habit, but we have found our church. Now, it takes ME to get involved and make it home.

Open up our homes, be hospitable…

I’m awful at this, Lord knows I need to work on my “grumbling”. Whether it be busyness, messiness, or lack of funds, I seem to always have an excuse to not open my home to others. This is not the command of God…

Offer hospitality to one another without grumbling.

1 Peter 4:9, NIV

Practice sacrificial giving…

One way to build relationships and solidarity with others is to give what you have. It can be time, money, food; whatever we have. Everything we possess must be held with open hands because it all flows from God, above.

All believers were one in heart and mind. No one claimed that any of their possessions was their own, but they shared everything they had.

Acts 4:32, NIV

Share our stories, our testimonies…

Vulnerability and transparency have been my battle cries for about a year now. We all have our stories and they are important to share. Every single one, points directly to our good Father! No matter how wretched we were/are, God is still so good. And, in that truth, we find commonality. Camaraderie.

So speak encouraging words to one another. Build up hope so you’ll all be together in this, no one left out, no one left behind.

1 Thessalonians 5:10, MSG

Show love, always…

This seems like a no-brainer, but so often we fall short of this commandment. When we put on love, fellowship falls right into place. All these other tips just seem to happen. Love is the greatest commandment. To put it plainly, love the Lord and love your neighbor (Matthew 22:37-39). Making sure our actions align with God’s word, is a good way to prove we are achieving love and building community with one another….

And above all these put on love, which binds everything together in perfect harmony.

Colossians 3:14, ESV

Above all, keep loving one another earnestly, since love covers a multitude of sins. Show hospitality to one another without grumbling. As each has received a gift, use it to serve one another, as good stewards of God’s varied grace:

1 Peter 4:8,10, ESV

Where Are You?

Are you in this position? Feeling alone, left out, like you don’t belong? Have you found yourself in a place that doesn’t feel quite like home? In a place where community seems so distant? Trust me, I truly know this walk. I wish with all my heart I could walk alongside of you. Help you create a new community. But know this, when you are struggling to build that community with your own efforts, God has just what you need.

Where we feel the most at home, isn't always where we end up. Often times, it takes our own willpower to seek out and build community where we land. Women of Faith | Spiritual Growth | Scripture Study | Christian Mentoring | Daily Devotional

Masaaki Komori

relationship, love, intimacy, Oh Lord Help Us, Christian, women, ministry

Relationship: From a Love Affair to an Intimate Closeness with The Father

Love affairs are intense, exciting, and fleeting. Our feelings of love will fizzle over time, which is why we must be continually falling in love with our Lord. This maturing of our love leads to a deep, intimate relationship.



Every now and then I realize a need in my psyche to listen to chick music. I’ve told my husband that this is necessary for healthy, female existence…at least for me. It consists of different artists for each of us, but I imagine you know what I mean. Your gal may growl out her salty words or she may purr velvet blues, but depending on the day and my mood, I can bounce from Sara Bareilles wanting to see me be brave to Adele sending her love to his new lover. Probably like you, I can swing from Julia Fischers’ fingers dancing over her violin strings to Taylor Swift singing “Getaway Car.”

And that, dear sister, is where I landed the other day while upstairs doing particular household chores which I least enjoy. It was a Taylor day. Her song, “Sad, Beautiful, Tragic,” tugged at my heart in an unusually strong way. I replayed it several times, listening intently to the words as I questioned internally why this and one other song (“Begin Again”), on the album was arresting my attention. Most chick music falls in this category: girl meets boy; boy breaks girl’s heart; girl is shattered, can never trust again OR she’s tough, moving on, getting revenge, etc.

It occurred to me that too often over the years my relationship with God has been more like a love affair than an intimate, covenant relationship; maybe yours, too.

Love affairs are intense, exciting, and fleeting. Our feelings of love will fizzle over time, which is why we must be continually falling in love with our Lord. This maturing of our love leads to a deep, intimate relationship.

A Love Affair…

Love affairs are initially characterized by warmth, infatuation and hormones raging. Dr. Richard Schwartz, associate professor of psychiatry at Harvard Medical School and a consultant at McLean Massachusetts General Hospital said that in the early stages of love our levels of cortisol, a stress hormone, rises in our system.  In addition, love turns on the neurotransmitter dopamine, which stimulates the brain’s pleasure centers, and drops the levels of serotonin, which “adds a dash of obsession.” When this formula is added together, the equation always equals the exciting, crazy, dare-I-say silly feeling of an early infatuation/love. As the love-year progresses, chemicals gradually return to a normal balance and, if both hang around, a mature type of love follows. The hormone and neurotransmitter oxytocin increases to produce calm and helps to cement the bond that is being created between the two people involved. Other brain specialists concur.

Pretty amazing how the Lord-of-all worked those little details out, huh?

The problem is, we humans like that crazy, exciting, OMG! first-love feeling all the time…in every relationship.

It might explain our divorce rate…might help us understand why so many singles hit the dating web sites night after night…

Might even explain our prayerlessness.

Falling in Love…

While some of us still possess the buzz of the first blush of being a new Christian, many do not. So, as John Wimber, (one of the founding leaders of Vineyard USA), said to his first pastor after a few months of sitting in a pew, “You mean I gave up drugs for this?” Wimber wanted to do what he saw Jesus doing in the gospels, but didn’t see it happening in his church. Unlike many of us, however, he didn’t settle for a cooling agnosticism to replace the fire of his first love. Wimber studied the scriptures faithfully and passionately; he learned that if our love affair wasn’t with Jesus, it would be with something else. “Show me where you spend your time, money, and energy, and I’ll tell you what you worship.” he often said. Further, Wimber later claimed,

It seems the more I think about not sinning, the more I sin, but the more I think about just loving Jesus, the less I seem to sin. Falling in love seems to be the key.

John Wimber, Power Evangelism

There it is, again – falling in love. But this love is ongoing, maturing. It’s the kind of love that is patient, kind, and not envious, boastful, or rude. This love doesn’t always have to have its’ own way, and isn’t irritable or resentful. It doesn’t do a happy dance at wrongdoing, but rejoices with the truth. Love in its’ truest sense bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, and endures all things. In fact, it never, ever ends (I Corinthians 13:4-8).

Impossible, right? Why yes, it is!! Apart from the power of Christ within me, I am the antithesis of all of those attributes listed! I can be impatient, envious and rude -all in one breath! I can be irritable and demand my own way when my coffee isn’t prepared the way I like – all before 8 a.m.!

But God…

…has rescued me from the power of darkness and transferred me into the kingdom of His dear Son…

Colossians 1:13, NLT

It seems the more I think about not sinning, the more I sin, but the more I think about just loving Jesus, the less I seem to sin. Falling in love seems to be the key. ~John Wimber, Power Evangelism Click To Tweet

Intimate Love…

Why, WHY does the Father continue to rescue, forgive, and empower me?

Because He loves me…and you…with a deep, everlasting, intimate love that surpasses human understanding. When we became His children, God made a covenant with us through the work of Jesus Christ (Hebrews 6:13-20). It is a covenant of grace, filled with mercy, authored by Love.

It seems like drinking from a cracked cistern, really, when we, you and I, continually search for a new ‘first love’ feeling or sense of fulfillment by sipping in new relationships or attractions, whatever those may be, when Love Himself, the fountain of living waters- who has loved us like no other – is available to us at all times. He is waiting to give you, and me, a fresh drink.

For My people have committed two evils:
They have forsaken Me, the fountain of living waters,
And hewn themselves cisterns—broken cisterns that can hold no water.

Jeremiah 2:13, NKJV

Love affairs are intense, exciting, and fleeting. Our feelings of love will fizzle over time, which is why we must be continually falling in love with our Lord. This maturing of our love leads to a deep, intimate relationship.

Sharon McCutcheon


You are fiercely loved…

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exposure, vulnerability, relationships, Oh Lord Help Us, Christian, women, ministry, encouragement

Exposure: Enriching Relationships With Vulnerability

Exposing our hearts can be uncomfortable. Especially when it involves our spouses, friends, God, and even ourselves. Vulnerability has the ability to enrich our relationships and the results are beautiful. 



Vulnerability. There’s that word. I shiver when I hear it and cringe at the thought of opening up. I need the comfort of my couch and a warm cup of coffee; STAT!

Over these last few weeks, God has pushed me to learn one specific lesson: exposure. One thing that is incredibly difficult for me to do is speak my mind. To verbally expose feelings I have. There are two reasons I have difficulty in this area. One: confrontations make me uncomfortable. Two: I NEVER want others to feel uncomfortable because of me.

So why is “exposure” my lesson from God? It might be that 8 years is the exact time it takes for me to confront real issues within my marriage. Maybe it’s because of the adult friendships I am learning to navigate. Or, I’m finally understanding the importance of being vulnerable with myself. Perhaps, my spiritual growth in the Lord is drawing me towards a posture of exposure. I’m certain, these all apply.

Exposing our hearts can be uncomfortable. Especially when it involves our spouses, friends, God, and even ourselves. Vulnerability has the ability to enrich our relationships and the results are beautiful.

Types of Vulnerability

Marriage Vulnerability

One thing “they” don’t tell us about marriage: we will sooner or later be completely exposed. Yeah, we all know about physical exposure, but no one tells us our insides are completely laid bare for our spouse to see. This is something extremely uncomfortable for me.

When you are living every day of your life with someone, it’s inevitable they will see sides of you that no ones else sees…

My husband hears my true voice, sees my true reactions, and witnesses my most vulnerable moments. He sees the food I eat, the shows I watch, and when I have a booger hanging out of my nose. He’s seen me cry uncontrollably and that one time I punched something. Okay, maybe a couple times.

Because he sees all this, I feel the need to keep some things hidden. Something! Anything! I feel like I need to keep some sort of dignity. Or, that thing that is just too painful; it’s mine.

Relational Vulnerability

In any relationship, there is hurt. In my experience, pain comes most intensely when I’ve been unguarded, only to be rejected. Sometimes this happens instantly, but mostly this is a damage over time effect. Meaning, we slowly allow others a glimpse inside. Then, wham!! Which feels like complete betrayal.

My gut reaction if someone hurts me, is to walk away or distance myself. The flight response is strong in me. I build those walls, create boundaries, and mask my feelings. I hold on tight; they are mine.

Personal Vulnerability

I’m not sure about you, but I also build borders to keep myself away. Kind of like I’m refusing to be honest with myself. It’s uncomfortable to go there; to push through self-inflicted pain and allow healing.

Being vulnerable with ourselves, is to be completely raw with honesty. To acknowledge our part in the pain. It’s mine. No one else can see it, so why should I have to be brutally honest? Yeah, that’s not super fun for anyone, but it’s vital.

Spiritual Vulnerability

My past is so filthy, my sin too great, my road so dark…. I’m not sure what makes me think this is all mine. If I’ve truly given my life to God, all of it is His. Every dirty, sinful moment is used for His glory. It’s called testimony.

However, I often find myself trying to hide from God. If I have to endure one more probing of the Spirit, I may just implode. Not really, but we all know there’s a lesson to learn when we are vulnerable with the Lord. Most times, I’m a child and I fight against lesson learning.

My past is so filthy, my sin too great, my road so dark... If I've truly given my life to God, all of it is His. Every dirty, sinful moment is used for His glory. It's called testimony. Click To Tweet

Responding Vulnerably

So how do we overcome? We can all benefit from practical application. We need to know what to do. We need to let go of the “mines” to strengthen every meaningful relationship we care for…

Humility

Saying “I’m sorry” is so incredibly vulnerable. It proves we are human. It proves we are NOT perfect (gasp). We hurt the people we love, the God who created us, and even ourselves. I have this rule: if you feel sorry, just say it. It shows you are thinking of the other person’s feelings, apart from their words. Also, repentance is the key to our relationship with God.

Do nothing out of selfish ambition or vain conceit. Rather, in humility value others above yourselves

Philippians 2:3, NIV

Prayer

This one is easy to apply to our relationship with God, but what about our marriages? What about our friendships? How often do we kneel with our spouses or start a coffee date with a prayer? Do we pray for each other face to face? I find it easy to pray for others, but shy away from praying for things I know I need help with.

Here are my directions: Pray much for others; plead for God’s mercy upon them; give thanks for all he is going to do for them.

1 Timothy 2:1, TLB

Scripture

Another easy one to incorporate in our walk with God. Maybe a little easier to have Bible time with our families, but what about our friendships? Do we approach times spent together with bible studies and scriptures close to our hearts? We should tackle issues and problems with the Truth of God.

All scripture is God-breathed and is useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting and training in righteousness, so that the servant of God may be thoroughly equipped for every good work.

2 Timothy 3:16-17, NIV

Alone Time

I find this most easy with my husband. Others find alone time with the Lord easiest. I find it most difficult to spend quality, one on one time with a friend. Mostly because…children. I would say, focus on a relationship where you know this is lacking. Even alone time with yourself (self-care).

What then shall we say, brothers and sisters? When you come together, each of you has a hymn, or a word of instruction, a revelation, a tongue or an interpretation.

1 Corinthians 14:26, NIV

Working/Creating Together

I often forget that my ability to work and create comes from the Lord. When I say forget, I mean I don’t invite Him to help me or be a part of it. Allowing my husband to create with me, or see an unfinished work of art is completely vulnerable to me. The same is true in friendships. My creations are very dear to me (whatever it is) and I feel exposed showing others.

Whatever you do, work at it with all your heart, as working for the Lord, not for human masters, since you know that you will receive an inheritance from the Lord as a reward. It is the Lord Christ you are serving.

Colossians 3:23-24, NIV

Common Ground

In almost all my relationships, salvation is a common ground. Testimonies are meant to be shared. My testimony is growing. God is shaping and molding it. I believe, with all of my heart, that my testimony glorifies Him…as long as I’m obedient and share it.

I will praise you to all my brothers; I will stand up before the congregation and testify of the wonderful things you have done.

Psalm 22:22, TLB

I urge all of us to evaluate how we can actively utilize vulnerability to strengthen and enrich our relationships. I know, without a doubt, our obedience to the Lord’s design, will create beautiful, fulfilling friendships.

Exposing our hearts can be uncomfortable. Especially when it involves our spouses, friends, God, and even ourselves. Vulnerability has the ability to enrich our relationships and the results are beautiful.

wayne dahlberg