Posts Tagged ‘stress’


God desires for you to have daily evidence of your Salvation. He desires us to know it in our heart, our soul and our strength. His desire is that you live each day as a devoted follower of Jesus Christ. We can see how this is possible at church, even though church can become a distraction to following Jesus Christ. After all, we sing songs about Jesus and we pretend to listen to sermons about Jesus.But what about in the parking lot, on Monday morning, when the pressures and stresses of life start to bombard us? How does Jesus relate to real life? This is where discipline comes into our Christian walk. We must discipline ourselves to bring Jesus Christ into every situation we face. In fact, we must discipline ourselves to view every situation from the Gospel perspective.

Paul said: I decided to know nothing among you except Jesus Christ and him crucified. 1 Corinthians 2:2

Do You Have Stress in Your Life?

Why? Jesus promised us rest…

Matthew 11:28 Come to me, all who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest.

The writer of Hebrews says there is a promise of entering God’s rest, but bemoaned the fact that not every Christian enters…

Hebrews 4:1-2 Therefore, while the promise of entering his rest still stands, let us fear lest any of you should seem to have failed to reach it. For good news came to us just as to them, but the message they heard did not benefit them, because they were not united by faith with those who listened.

These were not heathen Gentiles. These were faithful Jews, God’s chosen. They had seen His Salvation at the Red Sea. They had covenanted with Moses to follow the Lord. But something happened, and they were overthrown in the wilderness by their stresses.

I believe the Gospel has the Power of Rest for Stressed Christians.

In Paul’s day, being a Christian meant being a disciple. It meant giving everything up. It meant losing family, friends, and possessions. It meant the threat of losing your life. We have lost that perspective in Culturally Christian Bible Belt America.

The Gospel has power for our lives, but it is conditional.

1 Corinthians 15:1-2 Now I would remind you, brothers, of the gospel I preached to you, which you received, in which you stand, and by which you are being saved, if you hold fast to the word I preached to you— unless you believed in vain.

“You are being saved” pictures an ongoing process whereby you are the recipient of God’s salvation. You are the one being acted upon. However, you can block the power of the Gospel by failing to take hold of the Word. Κατέχω (Katecho) does not mean to take hold of something in a casual way. It means to take hold of something as if you were making it your own, (to hold fast, keep secure, keep firm possession of). Like holding on to a bar of gold. You clutch it close to you, you make it yours, and no one is going to pry it from your hands.

Jesus explain the importance of “holding fast” in the parable of the soils and the seeds:

Luke 8:15 As for that in the good soil, they are those who, hearing the word, hold it fast in an honest and good heart, and bear fruit with patience.

When you give your life to Jesus knowing that you could lose your life, you take hold of His Word as though your life depends upon it!

If you are not holding fast to the Gospel, the chances are that your belief in Christ had a selfish motivation, and was for your personal benefit, and not because you needed Jesus, and needed His life to be yours. If you have not been holding fast to the Gospel of Christ, if you have failed to make it your life, perhaps you should “examine yourselves, to see whether you are in the faith.”

2 Corinthians 13:5 Examine yourselves, to see whether you are in the faith. Test yourselves. Or do you not realize this about yourselves, that Jesus Christ is in you?—unless indeed you fail to meet the test!

Stress – What is it?

Dr. Nick Hall (expert in psychobiology) conducts a seminar called “Stress and Disease” He gives a humorous example of one coping skill for dealing with job stress.

When you have had one of those TAKE THIS JOB AND SHOVE IT days, try this. On your way home after work, stop at your pharmacy and go to the section where they have thermometers. You will need to purchase a rectal thermometer made by *Q-Tip. Be very sure that you get this brand. When you get home, lock your doors, draw the drapes, and disconnect the phone so you will not be disturbed during your therapy. Change to very comfortable clothing, such as a sweat suit and lie down on your bed. Open the package containing the thermometer and remove the thermometer and carefully place it on the bedside table so that it will not become chipped or broken.Take the written material that accompanies the thermometer and as you read it you will notice in small print the statement that “every rectal thermometer made by Q-Tip is PERSONALLY tested.” Now close your eyes and say out loud five times, ‘I am so glad that I do not work in quality control at the Q-Tip Company.’

Practical Definition of Stress.

The basic definition of “stress” is any opposing reaction or force to your own intention that causes strain or tension. Similarly (but not the same), the definition of a problem is an opposing intention or force of some kind. Problems can be solved. A problem does not necessarily cause stress or tension. The main characteristic of a problem that becomes stressful is feeling like we cannot do anything about it. Not all problems are stressful when we feel that we can do something about them, no matter how much or how little.

The full definition of stress is “a problem (or set of problems) that we do not feel that we can solve or do something effective to handle.”

In other words, you could say “I don’t feel like I can do anything about this problem” or “I feel stressed” and it would mean the same thing. Take anything in your life that feels stressful to you. Apply this definition to it and see if it fits. Is it something you do not have a real solution for? Let’s look at it another way. Do you feel stressed by situations or problems that you have a good solution for? Probably not!

Stress and Children – Causes
  • being away from home (ages 5 to 7)
  • fear of wetting themselves (ages 5 to 7)
  • worry about getting along with peers
  • worry about school work
  • fear of being chosen last on any team
  • fear of being different from others
  • worry about changing bodies (ages 10 to 12)

Other major sources of stress:

  • divorce of parents
  • move to new town or city
  • being held back in school
  • serious illness
  • parent being called to war
Signs and Symptoms of Child Stress
  • Physical—headaches, stomach aches, vomiting, wetting
  • Emotional—fear, irritability, sadness
  • Behavioral—crying, nervous tics, losing temper
  • Interactions with others—withdrawing, teasing or bullying, extreme
Stress and Teens
  • The pressure of expectations from self and from others
  • The pressure at school from teachers, coaches,
  • The pressures due to grades and homework
  • Strained relationship with classmates
  • Strained relationship with parents/siblings
  • Physical and biological changes in the body during adolescence
  • Negative feelings about oneself/low self-esteem
  • Heated arguments with or between parents
  • Financial problems in the family
  • Tragedy in the family (e.g. death, divorce, cancer, AIDS)
  • Break up with boyfriend/girlfriend
  • Separation or divorce of parents
  • High crime rate in the living environment/neighborhood
  • Moving to a new surroundings
  • Changing to a new school
  • Horrifying societal events like 9/11 terrorist attacks or communal war
  • Failing to achieve something desired
Signs and Symptoms of Teen Stress

Signs of teen stress include withdrawal; crying; picking fights; loss of focus and diminishing accomplishment; change in eating or sleeping patterns, particularly loss of appetite and disturbed sleep; moodiness or anger. Extreme stress can lead to thoughts of suicide.

Stress and Adults
Latest Results from the American Psychological Association:
  • 32% report extreme stress
  • Nearly one in five (17%) reach their highest stress level 15 or more days per month.
  • Almost half (48%) say their stress level has risen over the last five years.
  • Stress didn’t come as a surprise. Most participants indicated that stress is a natural part of life.
  • But the survey shows that participants are suffering physically, emotionally, professionally, and personally as a result of stress.
  • Most participants — 82% — say they manage their stress well. But they also admit that stress causes problems with their physical and mental health, relationships, and work.
  • More than three out of four participants — 77% — said that within the previous month, they had had physical problems due to stress.
  • Those problems included fatigue, headache, upset stomach, muscle tension, change in appetite, teeth grinding, change in sex drive, and feeling dizzy.
  • Almost as many participants — 73% — reported stress-related psychological symptoms in the previous month, including irritability, anger, nervousness, lack of energy, and feeling on the verge of tears.
  • Stress kept nearly half of participants — 48% — awake at night during the previous month. They reported losing 21 hours of sleep during that month.
  • Almost half of participants — 43% — said they had overeaten or eaten unhealthy foods because of stress in the previous month. Candy and chocolate were their most popular comfort foods.
  • Two-thirds of smokers said they smoked more when they were stressed, and 17% of drinkers said they drank too much within the previous week because of stress.
  • Work: 74%
  • Money: 73%
  • Workload: 66%
  • Children: 64%
  • Family responsibilities: 60%
  • Health concerns: 55%
  • Health problems affecting spouse, partner, or children: 55%
  • Health problems affecting parents or other family members: 53%
  • Housing costs (e.g. rent or mortgage): 51%
  • Intimate relationships: 47%
Stress and Health
  • Most participants — 82% — say they manage their stress well. But they also admit that stress causes problems with their physical and mental health, relationships, and work.
  • More than three out of four participants — 77% — said that within the previous month, they had had physical problems due to stress.
  • Those problems included fatigue, headache, upset stomach, muscle tension, change in appetite, teeth grinding, change in sex drive, and feeling dizzy.
  • Almost as many participants — 73% — reported stress-related psychological symptoms in the previous month, including irritability, anger, nervousness, lack of energy, and feeling on the verge of tears.
Losing Sleep, Eating Badly
  • Stress kept nearly half of participants — 48% — awake at night during the previous month. They reported losing 21 hours of sleep during that month.
  • Almost half of participants — 43% — said they had overeaten or eaten unhealthy foods because of stress in the previous month. Candy and chocolate were their most popular comfort foods.
  • Two-thirds of smokers said they smoked more when they were stressed, and 17% of drinkers said they drank too much within the previous week because of stress.
Sources of Stress
  • Work: 74%
  • Money: 73%
  • Workload: 66%
  • Children: 64%
  • Family responsibilities: 60%
  • Health concerns: 55%
  • Health problems affecting spouse, partner, or children: 55%
  • Health problems affecting parents or other family members: 53%
  • Housing costs (e.g. rent or mortgage): 51%
  • Intimate relationships: 47%

Biblical Lessons for Dealing With Stress

1. How Did Jesus Handle Stress?

Jesus in Matthew 11 was facing what some would consider “Stressful Problems”

  1. He went preaching in the cities where his disciples lived.
  2. John the Baptist sent his disciples to ask if Jesus was the one. Jesus did not give a straight answer, but said, tell John what I have done, and tell him “Blessed are the ones who are not offended in me.”
  3. The crowd around Jesus did not understand what he said, Jesus said something else harsh, “from the days of John the Baptist until now the Kingdom of heaven has suffered violence, and the violent take it by force.”
  4. Jesus gets on the crowd for not understanding His message.
  5. Then he lambasts the cities where he had been preaching and doing miracles, because they had refused to understand His message. He said it would be more tolerable for Sodom on the Day of Judgment than it would be for them.

So at the height of these stresses – of John doubting Him, his followers doubting Him, and the cities where He did miracles doubting Him, Jesus said an amazing thing.

MATT 11:25 – “I thank you Father, Lord of Heaven and Earth, that you have hidden these things for the wise and understanding and revealed them to children; yes, Father, for such was your gracious will. All things have been handed over to me by my Father…

Come unto me, all who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you, and learn from me, for I am gentle and lowly in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light.”

Jesus was facing some stressful situations that would appear beyond His control. He reacted by calling God Lord of heaven and earth, and then thanking God for giving Him babies instead of wise adults to start His church. Then He said, by the way, God has turned over everything to me. I am the boss, and if you doubt me, I lay down this challenge. Lay down your burdens and I promise you rest. But if you want more, you need to study and learn from me, and if you really follow me, your soul will find rest!

Jesus said there are two rests, one promised upon receiving Him, and one discovered as you live your life yoked to Him. The second rest is deeper and more satisfying, effecting your mind, will and emotions. In other words, no matter the problems you are facing, if you face them with the one who handles everything, you will not feel stressed!

2. How Did Paul Handle Stress?

1 Corinthians 2:5 that your faith might not rest in the wisdom of men but in the power of God.

2 Corinthians 12:8-10 Three times I pleaded with the Lord about this, that it should leave me. But he said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore I will boast all the more gladly of my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ may rest upon me. For the sake of Christ, then, I am content with weaknesses, insults, hardships, persecutions, and calamities. For when I am weak, then I am strong.

Paul  could see the importance of the Power of God. He desired it so much, that he welcomed stresses, persecutions, hardships, because they gave him the opportunity to know the power of God in the midst of his weaknesses and stresses.

3. How Did God Try to Teach the Wilderness Jews to Deal with Stress?

Early on in their Journey, the Hebrews faced several stressful problems. They came into the wilderness of Shur, which means a foe lying in wait.

שׁוּר shûr (From H7889); a foe (as lying in wait). This set the stage for what was to come in the early months of their travels in the Sinai. Problems were lying in wait for them, and God wanted to teach them how to respond to stressful situations.

Problems always lie in wait. You can go to work like any other day, and discover that you are out of a job. You can go for a routine check up and be told you need some tests. A simple conversation with a friend or family member can end up in a fight and a wall. There may be a call from the police about your child, or worse, your spouse. Problems happen, and depending upon whether we think we can handle it or not, we feel stressed.

This problem was serious. They needed water. Three days had passed, some were suffering dehydration. Livestock was at the point of death. Suddenly a cry goes up, “look there’s water!” Everyone rushes to it, starts to drink, but something is wrong. This is like the water pools in Egypt that develop after the Nile floods. That water brought disease. This was the same ‘bitter’ water. The people grumbled and Moses cried out. He was thirsty too. He was beginning to stress!

Exodus 15:22-26 Then Moses made Israel set out from the Red Sea, and they went into the wilderness of Shur. They went three days in the wilderness and found no water. When they came to Marah, they could not drink the water of Marah because it was bitter; therefore it was named Marah. And the people grumbled against Moses, saying, “What shall we drink?” And he cried to the LORD, and the LORD showed him a log, and he threw it into the water, and the water became sweet. There the LORD made for them a statute and a rule, and there he tested them, saying, “If you will diligently listen to the voice of the LORD your God, and do that which is right in his eyes, and give ear to his commandments and keep all his statutes, I will put none of the diseases on you that I put on the Egyptians, for I am the LORD, your healer.”

A. God Revealed the Power of His Word.

    • The Word of Life

He gave them a statute and rule, that if they diligently listened to the voice of the Lord, and obeyed His commandments, they would never have any disease that the Egyptians had. God revealed a new name-Jehovah Rophe, Our God who heals. He then led them to Elim, where there were 12 springs and 70 palm trees. A veritable oasis in the wilderness.

You can drink bitter water, and it will not make you sick. All you have to do is believe to the point of obeying. Paul said you will be saved (healed), but all you have to do is hold fast to the Word! God always does our problems one better. His power is simply amazing, and He wants us to enjoy it.

The cure for the bitterness of Life is the Healing power of faith in God and His Word. His Word Is The Tree Of Life!

B. God Revealed the Importance of Rest.

    • The Bread of Life

In the wilderness of Sin, the people grumbled again because they were hungry.

Exodus 16:4 Then the LORD said to Moses, “Behold, I am about to rain bread from heaven for you, and the people shall go out and gather a day’s portion every day, that I may test them, whether they will walk in my law or not.

God told Moses that He was going to rain manna from heaven and that it was going to be a test of whether the Hebrews would walk in God’s Law. How you say? He only gave them six days of food. They were to rest…the seventh day.

The cure for temporal problems is to look to Heaven and learn to rest in the power of God!

C. God Reveals the Rock of Living Water (He is Always with Us)

    • The Water of Life

Ex 17:1-7 the people grumbled again, and this time took up stones to heave at Moses. God revealed the Rock of Living Water.

The cure for doubts about God’s presence and power in the midst of your problems is to come to the Rock and quench your thirst on His Living Water.

The Samaritan woman lived with the daily stress of being hated by the townspeople. She was a sinful woman, the object of abuse and contempt. Then one afternoon, she met the Rock, the Rock who could give her Living Water. Nothing else mattered. The contempt, her scandalous past, her poor reputation. Here was the Rock greater than all that, who could give her Living Water that would never run dry. She gained her life back. She discovered the Savior for all her mistakes, all her failures and all her hopes.

D. God reveals the Altar of Jehovah Nissi

    • The Altar of Victory in Life

Exodus 17:8-9 Then Amalek came and fought with Israel at Rephidim. So Moses said to Joshua, “Choose for us men, and go out and fight with Amalek. Tomorrow I will stand on the top of the hill with the staff of God in my hand.”

Amalek always represents the flesh. And the flesh is constantly at war with God and His children. The chosen men still had to fight, had to bleed, had to die, but the victory was dependent upon God.

One aspect of Victory over the flesh is the need of the Altar. The Altar of Life.

Romans 12:1-2 I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that ye present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable unto God, which is your reasonable service. And be not conformed to this world: but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind, that ye may prove what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect, will of God.

The cure for battling the flesh is to die on the altar of the Cross of Christ!

  • The Cross is our Banner-Jehovah Nissi. The Cross is our Victory!

Does God Want us to Stress or Rest?

Can a Disciple truly enjoy Rest, even in the midst of stressful situation? God Promises that we can enter into His Rest:

Hebrews 4:1 Therefore, while the promise of entering his rest still stands, let us fear lest any of you should seem to have failed to reach it.

So there is a Rest, but it is not guaranteed. It is something to be desired and attained. The consequence is being overthrown in the wilderness.

Hebrews 4:6-7 Since therefore it remains for some to enter it, and those who formerly received the good news failed to enter because of disobedience, again he appoints a certain day, “Today,” saying through David so long afterward, in the words already quoted, “Today, if you hear his voice, do not harden your hearts.”

Hebrews 4:9-11 So then, there remains a Sabbath rest for the people of God, for whoever has entered God’s rest has also rested from his works as God did from his. Let us therefore strive to enter that rest, so that no one may fall by the same sort of disobedience.

  1. Obey God
  2. Do not harden your heart
  3. Strive to enter
  • The striving is in regards to this flesh. It has a hard time with the idea of FAITH.

Faith Determines our Stress Level

1 Corinthians 15:2 You are also saved by it, if you hold to the message I proclaimed to you—unless you believed for no purpose. HCSB

Paul says it is a fact that you are being saved (Indicative, Passive). You are the recipient of the action; however, this salvation is conditioned upon you actively holding fast to the Gospel message that Paul preached (Indicative, Present). You must do the holding. Otherwise, your belief was in vain, (without purpose, or cause).

It is a circle of FAITH. You are being saved by the power of the Gospel, but you must keep holding on to the message of the Gospel in order for that salvation to stay in effect. This world is corrupt, the enemy is too strong. If you try to find salvation in your own strength, or grow apathetic through the hardness of your heart, you will be overcome; you will not know the power of the Gospel.

As Christians, we must keep the message of the Gospel ever before us, in all we encounter. As soon as we turn away, or forget, or act in our flesh, we will be overcome. The Gospel has power for our lives, but we must desire it, we must embrace it, we must hold fast! Salvation is more than a belief. Salvation is life, life that is transformed by the eternal power of the Gospel of Jesus.

What that means is that you will not know the power of this Gospel until you identify with the Death, burial and resurrection of Jesus Christ.

The Death, Burial and Resurrection Conquers Stress

You must daily die to what you want, submit your body to God’s design, and then lean entirely upon Christ for victory.

If Salvation is to be continuous and healing, the Gospel is to be applied to our lives every day.

1. His Dead Body opens God’s Reservoir of Love upon our Life

We face a stressful problem, an impossible situation and we cry out: God, how could you let this happen? This is not fair, this is not right! Bitterness enters, distrust becomes rooted, and we begin to doubt God’s Love for us. We start to see Him as vindictive, judgmental. We see the church that way. We see pastors that way.

How does the Death apply to stress?

Stress is when a problem we face seems larger than what we can handle. The Death is something we embrace every day, in every problem. Through Faith, we believe that God’s Love is upon us, because we are in His Son. We die to what we want and say, “God, your plans are my plans. I lay such and such on the altar. You have your will and way.”

  • I am the LORD your God. (Jehovah Elohim)

2. His Buried Body applies God’s Justice upon our life.

Sometimes stress is because things are not right in our life. There may be addictions that we cannot overcome. There may be situations at work that are not right. Our spouse may be causing problems. Our priorities may be wrong. Life is out of balance, and things are stressful.

Jesus dealt with this world. He dealt with Satan. He dealt with the flesh. He enabled God to declare we are justified even when clothed with the flesh. The peace of Jesus Christ is upon us. He overcame Satan through the power of the Word.

We need to embrace what His buried body represents. God is free to apply His justice to your life. No matter the addiction or the backslidden condition of your heart. When you desire God’s justice upon your body, your life, God will start to work that, because He can. His Kingdom Will can be upon your life, because Jesus dealt with the flesh. Your soul is free to pursue the Spirit of God.

When stress is so bad that your health is affected, give your body to God. Realize the need to be a living sacrifice. Your body is buried, but you still live. However, you do not live for yourself, you live to fulfill God’s pleasure and will. If God wants to use your health to further His pleasure, so be it. You body is a living sacrifice. But perhaps God wants you to deal with things that are not right in your life.

Perhaps a broken relationship is causing stress. Perhaps you are dishonoring a spouse or an authority in your life. Perhaps you are dishonoring your body in some way. Set it right, ask God to bring His justice into your life. Then live as a living sacrifice, ever consumed, but ever living.

  • God is Jehovah Rophe-our healer!

3. His Resurrected Body applies God’s Righteousness to our Life.

What happens when you experience God’s steadfast love, have His justice applied to your life, but there is still this war going on, there is still stress? You feel weak, you feel powerless. You want to give up, stop believing that God can do anything.

This is the hardest test of all. This is the time when you try to hold up the Word, you try to cling to God, but your arms fail, you grow weak, and the stress is overwhelming.

You need to realize that God is strongest when we are weakest. Instead of despair, we reach out; we embrace the Victory that is in Christ. Too often, that victory comes only when we lock arms with other Christians. Hoist the Banner of Christ’s Victory at the altar! We look to the banner, but we must join others at the altar. Some stress is so great that you must humble yourself and reach out to the strength of others.

The Victory of Christ is always joined to the Altar. We die, we are buried, and we share in His Victory with others.

During the early stressful days of their wilderness journey, God revealed three names to His people.

  • God is Jehovah-Nissi!

At the Very, least we should have Sunday set aside where we rest in the Lord. We give all our problems and stresses to Him. We come to the altar and we lift up the name of Jehovah Nissi

Philippians 4:4-7 Rejoice in the Lord always; again I will say, Rejoice. Let your reasonableness be known to everyone. The Lord is at hand; do not be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God. And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.

For we who have believed do enter into that rest.

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Total Health

is “the dynamic and harmonious interaction of spirit, soul and body in the absence of mental, emotional or physical sickness or disease”.

“Now may the God of peace himself sanctify you completely, and may your whole spirit and soul and body be kept blameless at the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ. He who calls you is faithful; he will surely do it”. 1 Thessalonians 5:23-24

To be sanctified is to withdraw your spirit, soul and body from the unhealthy entanglements of our corrupt culture and experience true fellowship with the God of peace.

We are made of three distinct parts: spirit, soul and body. Total Health involves an understanding of how these interact with each other.

We are made in God’s image, and that means we are like God who “is a Spirit, and they that worship Him must worship in spirit and truth”.

There are three different laws operating within us-law of the spirit, law of the mind (soul), and the law of sin in the body (Romans 7:22-8:1)

When these three laws are in conflict with one another, we will experience stress, disease and even premature death. When they are in harmony with one another, we will experience health, peace and life.

“For to set the mind on the flesh is death, but to set the mind on the Spirit is life and peace”. Romans 8:6

“Beloved, I pray that all may go well with you and that you may be in good health, as it goes well with your soul”. 3 John 1:2

The Goal of Total Health

Total Health is not perfect health. Perfect health is not possible for we are all in the process of dying physically.

Though our outer self is wasting away, our inner self is being renewed day by day. 2 Corinthians 4:16

Total Health is the ability to fulfill the purposes for which God created you. Before we were even born, God designed us to carry out great works.

For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand, that we should walk in them. Ephesians 2:10

Our identity and fulfillment in life is to carry out these great works. We do not want any sickness or disease to hinder us from carrying out our life purpose. We have a limited number of days in which to accomplish the great works for which God brought us into this world. Our focus should not be on having better health but on completing our life purpose.

We were designed before conception

“Before I formed you in the womb I knew you, and before you were born I consecrated you; I appointed you a prophet to the nations.” Jeremiah 1:5

For you formed my inward parts; you knitted me together in my mother’s womb. I praise you, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made. Wonderful are your works; my soul knows it very well. Psalms 139:13-14

God promised His people that if they would love Him and keep His commandments, He would bless them more than all the other peoples of the earth:

And the Lord commanded us to do all these statutes, to fear the Lord our God, for our good always, that he might preserve us alive, as we are this day. And it will be righteousness for us, if we are careful to do all this commandment before the Lord our God, as he has commanded us.’ Deuteronomy 6:24-25

You shall be blessed above all peoples. There shall not be male or female barren among you or among your livestock. And the Lord will take away from you all sickness, and none of the evil diseases of Egypt, which you knew, will he inflict on you, but he will lay them on all who hate you. Deuteronomy 7:14-15

“And if you faithfully obey the voice of the Lord your God, being careful to do all his commandments that I command you today, the Lord your God will set you high above all the nations of the earth. And all these blessings shall come upon you and overtake you, if you obey the voice of the Lord your God. Blessed shall you be in the city, and blessed shall you be in the field. Blessed shall be the fruit of your womb and the fruit of your ground and the fruit of your cattle, the increase of your herds and the young of your flock. Blessed shall be your basket and your kneading bowl. Blessed shall you be when you come in, and blessed shall you be when you go out. Deuteronomy 28:1-6

Total Health: Being Made “Whole”

On the way to Jerusalem, he was passing along between Samaria and Galilee. And as he entered a village, he was met by ten lepers, who stood at a distance and lifted up their voices, saying, “Jesus, Master, have mercy on us.” When he saw them, he said to them, “Go and show yourselves to the priests”. And as they went, they were cleansed (katharizo). Then one of them, when he saw that he was healed, turned back, praising God with a loud voice; and he fell on his face at Jesus’ feet, giving him thanks. Now he was a Samaritan. Then Jesus answered, “Were not ten cleansed? Where are the nine? Was no one found to return and give praise to God except this foreigner?” And he said to him, “Rise and go your way; your faith has made you well.” Luke 17:11-19

1. Cleansing the Blood

As they went, they were cleansed.

katharízō; from katharós , pure. To cleanse, free from filth[1]; “to cleanse, make clean”,[2]

In a physical sense, this would refer primarily to the circulatory system, because the “life of the flesh is in the blood” (Lev. 17:11)

In a spiritual sense, to purify from the pollution and guilt of sin (Acts 15:9; 2 Cor. 7:1; Eph. 5:26; Titus 2:14; Heb. 9:14; James 4:8; 1 John 1:7, 9;[3]

In a spiritual sense, ‘katharizo’ refers to the removal of the pollution and guilt of sin.

2. Healing the Flesh

One of the lepers looked at his flesh and saw that he was healed which is “iáomai”; to heal, cure, restore to bodily health.[4] The physical symptoms of the disease had disappeared.

When our blood is cleansed of its impurities, the flesh can be restored to health.

3. Achieving Wholeness

Simply removing the distressing condition of the disease is not total health. Total health involves a restored relationship with God and the accompanying signs of joy, freedom, and inward peace.

The leper who returned to give thanks was the only one that Jesus told, “Rise and go your way; your faith has made you well”. Well or whole is the word ‘sózō’.

Sózō; to save, deliver, make whole, preserve safe from danger, loss, destruction. Sózō occurs fifty-four times in the Gospels. Fourteen relate to deliverance from disease or demon possession. Twenty instances, the inference is to the rescue of physical life from some impending peril or instant death. The remaining twenty times, the reference is to spiritual salvation[5]

Three Aspects of Salvation

1. Salvation of the Spirit

Eternal Salvation of our spirit. This is the New Birth spoken of in John 3. This is what Paul described in Romans 10:

Because, if you confess with your mouth that Jesus is Lord and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved (sózō). For with the heart one believes and is justified, and with the mouth one confesses and is saved. For the Scripture says, “Everyone who believes in him will not be put to shame.” For there is no distinction between Jew and Greek; for the same Lord is Lord of all, bestowing his riches on all who call on him. For “everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved (sózō)”. Romans 10:9-13

2. Salvation of the Soul

The regeneration and salvation of our spirit is instantaneous. The salvation of our soul (mind, will and emotions) is a continual process. It is accomplished through the control of the Holy Spirit in conjunction with the washing of the Word of God. As we read and meditate on God’s Word, we build a Biblical belief system. This is what James was writing about:

Therefore put away all filthiness and rampant wickedness and receive with meekness the implanted word, which is able to save (sózō) your souls. James 1:21

The wholeness, soundness and health of our soul has a direct effect upon our physical health. This is the meaning of John’s greeting:

“Beloved, I pray that all may go well with you and that you may be in good health, as it goes well with your soul”. 3 John 1:2

3. Salvation of the Body

The “wholeness” or “wellness” of our physical body is contingent upon obedience to God’s moral standards.

Do not be deceived: God is not mocked, for whatever one sows, that will he also reap. For the one who sows to his own flesh will from the flesh reap corruption, but the one who sows to the Spirit will from the Spirit reap eternal life. Galatians 6:7-8

When a member of the Corinthian church committed gross immorality, Paul commanded

When you are assembled in the name of the Lord Jesus and my spirit is present, with the power of our Lord Jesus, you are to deliver this man to Satan for the destruction of the flesh, so that his spirit may be saved in the day of the Lord. 1 Corinthians 5:4-5

Three Primary Factors that Contribute to Health

1. Genetic Tendencies

We all inherit tendencies toward certain diseases based on weaknesses in our genetic makeup. They do not have to become diseases if we follow God’s way of life.

The challenge of finding hereditary disease genes:

Our expectation is that the characterization of a disease- instigating gene will greatly assist our understanding of how and why it causes a malfunction in the body. It makes good sense to go to the root of the problem. But to learn a gene’s secret, first you must find it. And finding it is not so simple. It is much easier to locate the neighborhood in the genome where a gene resides than it is to determine its exact address.

Lilliput and Brobdingnag: Beyond Gulliver’s Travels. The magnitude of the challenge arises from the vast amount of DNA contained in the diploid human genome, which includes all of a person’s genetic material. If strung out, the DNA in a single human genome would stretch to about two meters, but the diameter of the strand would amount to only about two billionths of a meter, 20 angstroms, a span a hundred times smaller than a wavelength of light. If the DNA from a single cell from every human being on the planet — 6 billion people — were stitched end to end, the resulting string would girdle the earth about 300 times. If the genomes from every cell of the 6 billion people were laid out end to end, they would extend 700 billion, billion miles — enough to wrap around our galaxy more than 700 times.

To understand the enormous problem of finding a gene somewhere on an individual’s strand of DNA, imagine that a single human genome is long enough to circle the globe. On this scale, the amount of DNA in a chromosome would extend for a thousand miles. A gene would span just one twentieth of a mile, and a disease-causing defect — a point mutation, a change in only one DNA base pair — could run as short as one twentieth of an inch. What we are thus searching for is comparable to a fraction of an inch on the circumference of the globe! In this immense morass of DNA, finding the exact address of a gene and pinpointing its fault makes for extremely tough going, and it requires all of the creativity and ingenuity of everyone engaged in the quest.[6]

An example of genetic tendencies in one family:

We were looking for a large extended multigenerational family in which we could observe many instances of the Huntington’s disease gene or its normal counterpart being passed on — and we knew of just such a family. Members of the kindred live in Venezuela in three rural villages — San Luis, Barranquitas, and Laguneta — on the shores of Lake Maracaibo. Because it is situated in the northern region of Latin America and Lake Maracaibo is actually a huge ocean gulf, Venezuela has long communicated directly with Europe, and many European genes have appeared in the local population. Story has it that some sailor with Huntington’s disease came over to trade and left his legacy, but we do not know if this is apocryphal.

We have been able to trace the disease as far back as the early 1800s, to a woman appropriately named Maria ConcepciÛn. We know that Maria lived in the “pueblos de agua,” villages built on stilts in the water next to shores too marshy, jungly, and inhospitable to accommodate human life. Laguneta, where many of Maria’s descendants live, remains such a stilt village.

Maria was the founder of a kindred now numbering close to 11,000 people, living and deceased. In the pedigree, there are 371 persons with Huntington’s disease, 1,266 at 50 percent risk and 2,395 at 25 percent risk for the disease. Of the 11,000, 9,000 are living and the majority are under the age of forty. In these small and impoverished towns, we estimate that there are over 660 asymptomatic gene carriers who are too young to show symptoms, but as years pass — if no treatment is found — they will surely die. It is crushing to look at these exuberant children full of hope and expectation, despite poverty, despite illiteracy, despite dangerous and exhausting work for the boys fishing in small boats in the turbulent lake, or for even the tiny girls tending house and caring for ill parents, despite a brutalizing disease robbing them of parents, grandparents, aunts, uncles, and cousins — they are joyous and wild with life, until the disease attacks.[7]

2. Physical Constitution

We can inherit a strong physical constitution from our parents, yet through immoral or wild living pass along a weaker constitution to our children and grand children.

In the 1940’s Francis M. Pottenger (not Pottinger) M.D. began a ten year study using 900 cats to determine what effects processed foods have on the body, and to examine the genetic propensity of passing degenerative disease traits from generation to generation. The cats were divided into five groups with two of the groups fed raw whole foods and the other three groups cooked enzyme less foods. The cats were observed over a four generation period and the following results were documented by Doctor Pottenger:[8]

POTTENGER CAT EXPERIMENT SUMMARY

GROUP A B C D E
FOOD FED Raw meat Raw milk Pasteurized milk Evaporated milk Condensed milk
1st Generation Remained healthy Remained healthy Developed diseases and illnesses near end of life
2nd Generation Remained healthy Remained healthy Developed diseases and illnesses in middle of life
3rd Generation Remained healthy Remained healthy Developed diseases and illnesses in beginning of life; many died before six months of age;
4th Generation Remained healthy Remained healthy No fourth generation was produced: either third generation parents were sterile, or fourth generation cats were aborted before birth

Source: Pottenger’s Cats, a Study in Nutrition

3. Various Stresses

Whether our genetic tendencies and weak constitution will result in diseases will be determined primarily by stresses in our lives (because of what we say, think and do).

There can be many causes of stress, such as time constraints, having too much to do, and having too many bills and not enough funds.

However, the greatest stresses come from inward attitudes such as anger, guilt, lust, bitterness, greed, fear and envy. These destroy the immune system.

Is Total Health Healing?

Total healing is not possible on earth, because the sentence of death and the curse of sin have been placed on the physical body of every person.

Total Health refers to fulfilling the number of years for which God designed us to serve Him and the quality of life we need to carry out the work He has created us to accomplish.

There are three types of illnesses given in Scripture. When you develop an illness, discern which of these types you are experiencing. Then, carry out the appropriate Biblical responses.

1. Sickness unto Death

As a believer in the Lord, you are indestructible until your work on earth is done. As one preacher said: “you are bulletproof!” Once you finish your work, there is no point in staying around here. It is far more glorious to be in the presence of the Lord!

If a believer has what the doctors describe as a terminal illness, but he believes that his work is not yet done, he can appeal to God for healing-not just to extend his life but to accomplish the work that God has called him to do.

This was the basis for David’s prayer in his old age:

O God, from my youth you have taught me, and I still proclaim your wondrous deeds. So even to old age and gray hairs, O God, do not forsake me, until I proclaim your might to another generation, your power to all those to come. Psalms 71:17-18

In order to have this outlook on life and death, we must be good stewards of the time God has entrusted to us. We should be continually looking for better ways to redeem every hour by keeping it from going to waste and choosing the most profitable activities to advance God’s Kingdom.

If you were told today that you have a terminal disease, what reason would you give God for keeping you alive?

2. Sickness unto Chastisement

There are physical, emotional and spiritual consequences for violating God’s Laws. The most severe come to those who chose to violate His laws dealing with morality. If we cater to our fleshly wants, we shall reap the corruption of the flesh as Galatians 6:7 states.

The Bible also mentions specific consequences to those who dishonor their parents (Prov 30:17), violate God’s dietary restrictions (I Peter 1:15-16, Leviticus 11:44ff)

There are cause and effect health consequences when we violate God’s commands. In His mercy, God has established the communion table a place for thorough self-examination. Carry it out with the utmost care.

Careless Communion results in what Paul described:

“For anyone who eats and drinks without discerning the body eats and drinks judgment on himself. That is why many of you are weak and ill, and some have died. 1 Corinthians 11:29-30

If you are sick, ask yourself, is this God’s way of chastening me for not following His way of life? Consider the state of your soul as well:

  • Am I withholding forgiveness from someone who has hurt me deeply?
  • Am I resentful or regretful over something in my past, either because of someone else or my own actions?
  • Is there anything in my past for which I cannot bring myself to thank God for?
  • Are there any private sins that I cherish without confessing and repenting before Holy God?
  • Is there anything in my past that I have not found forgiveness for, and when reminded, I immediately jump on the Ferris wheel of regret?
  • Am I quick to get frustrated and even angry when certain situations arise?
  • Are there areas of my life I refuse to submit to God’s control?

3. Sickness unto the Glory of God.

God uses infirmities, sickness and disease to bring glory to Himself.

a) He Provides Supernatural Healing

As he passed by, he saw a man blind from birth. And his disciples asked him, “Rabbi, who sinned, this man or his parents, that he was born blind?” Jesus answered, “It was not that this man sinned, or his parents, but that the works of God might be displayed in him. John 9:1-3

This infirmity was designed years before Christ healed him. Therefore, we must never attribute sickness, disease or impairment as sin on his part or his parents fault.

b) God’s Glory is Manifested in our Weakness.

So to keep me from becoming conceited because of the surpassing greatness of the revelations, a thorn was given me in the flesh, a messenger of Satan to harass me, to keep me from becoming conceited. Three times I pleaded with the Lord about this, that it should leave me. But he said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore I will boast all the more gladly of my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ may rest upon me. For the sake of Christ, then, I am content with weaknesses, insults, hardships, persecutions, and calamities. For when I am weak, then I am strong. 2 Corinthians 12:7-10

God often gives us physical and even mental weaknesses to prevent us from depending on our own strength or ability rather than the supernatural working of His power.

The Five Factors Which Determine our Total Health

Sickness and disease can be associated with one or more of the following five factors. When proper care is given regarding these factors, you have the optimal potential to avoid or clear up the related diseases. The first three are the most important, according to Scripture.

1. What We Think

Intellectual thoughts travel through the limbic system of the brain, directly effecting many bodily functions. Research has proven a connection between the limbic system and emotional memory, which includes positive thoughts such as love, joy and peace; and negative thoughts such as anger, guilt, lust, bitterness, greed, fear and envy.

But what comes out of the mouth proceeds from the heart, and this defiles a person. For out of the heart come evil thoughts, murder, adultery, sexual immorality, theft, false witness, slander. These are what defile a person. But to eat with unwashed hands does not defile anyone.” Matthew 15:18-20

There are two parts of the nervous system that are especially significant: The limbic system and the autonomic nervous system. The Limbic System The limbic system is a complex set of structures that lies on both sides and underneath the thalamus, just under the cerebrum. It includes the hypothalamus, the hippocampus, the amygdala, and several other nearby areas. It appears to be primarily responsible for our emotional life, and has a lot to do with the formation of memories.[9]

All emotional memories are stored and can be consciously or subconsciously stimulated by the senses. The brain, the heart and the intestinal tract release neuro-transmitters that result in physiological changes. The thoughts of the heart prompt the greatest changes in the body, as it is stated in Scripture:

For as he thinketh in his heart, so is he: Eat and drink, saith he to thee; but his heart is not with thee. Proverbs 23:7

Neurotransmitters Receptors

Neurotransmitters exert their effect by binding to specific receptors on the neuronal postsynaptic membrane. A neurotransmitter can either ‘excite’ its neighbouring neuron so increasing its activity, or ‘inhibit’ its neighbouring neuron, suppressing its activity. In general, the activity of a neuron depends on the balance between the number of excitatory and inhibitory processes affecting it, and these can occur simultaneously. Most neurotransmitter receptors can be divided into two types – ligand-gated receptors and G-protein linked receptors.

Stimulation of a ligand-gated receptor  enables a channel in the receptor to open and permits the influx of chloride and potassium ions into the cell. The positive or negative charges that enter the cell either excite or inhibit the neuron. Ligands for these receptors include excitatory neurotransmitters, such as glutamate and, to a lesser extent, aspartate. Binding of these ligands to the receptor produces an excitatory postsynaptic potential (EPSP). Alternatively, binding of inhibitory neurotransmitter ligands, such as GABA and glycine, produces an inhibitory postsynaptic potential (IPSP). These ligand-gated receptors are also known as ionotropic or fast receptors.

G-protein linked receptors are indirectly linked to ion channels, via a second messenger system involving G-proteins and adenylate cyclase. These receptors are neither precisely excitatory nor inhibitory and modulate the actions of the classic excitatory and inhibitory neurotransmitters such as glutamate and glycine. These receptors tend to have an inhibitory effect if they are linked to the Gi protein in the cell membrane, and a more excitatory effect if linked to the Gs protein. G-protein linked receptors are known as metabotropic or slow receptors and examples include GABA-B, glutamate, dopamine (D1 and D2), 5-HT1A, 5-HT1B, 5-HT1D, 5-HT2A,5-HT2C receptors.

Serotoning receptors

Type Distribution Postulated Roles
5-HT1 Brain, instetinal nerves Neuronal inhibition, behavioural effects, cerebral vasoconstriction
5-HT2 Brain, heart, lungs, smooth muscle control, GI system, blood vessels, platelets Neuronal excitation, vasoconstriction, behavioural effects,depression, anxiety
5-HT3 Limbic system, ANS Nausea, anxiety
5-HT4 CNS, smooth muscle Neuronal excitation, GI
5-HT5, 6, 7 Brain Not known

Noradrenaline receptors

Type Distribution Postulated Roles
Alpha1 Brain, heart, smooth muscle Vasoconstriction, smooth muscle control
Alpha2 Brain, pancreas, smooth muscle Vasoconstriction, presynaptic effect in GI (relaxant)
Beta1 Heart, brain Heart rate (increase)
Beta2 Lungs, brain, skeletal muscle Bronchial relaxation, vasodilatation
Beta3 Postsynaptic effector cells Stimulation of effector cells

Dopamine receptors

Type Distribution Postulated Roles
D1, 5-like Brain, smooth muscle Stimulatory, role in schizophrenia?
D2, 3, 4-like Brain, cardiovascular system, presynaptic nerve terminals Inhibitory, role in schizphrenia?

Acetylcholine receptors

Type Distribution Postulated Roles
M1 Nerves CNS excitation, gastric acid secretion
M2 Heart, nerves, smooth muscle Cardiac inhibition, neural inhibition
M3 Glands, smooth muscle, endothelium Smooth, muscle contraction, vasodilation
M4 ?CNS? Not known
M5 ?CNS? Not known
NM Skeletal muscles neuromuscular junction Neuromuscular transmission
NN Postganglionic cell body dendrites Ganglionic transmission[10]

[11]

The heart and brain

However, following several years of  research, it was observed that, the heart communicates with the brain in ways that significantly affect how we perceive and react to the world. It was found that, the heart seemed to have its own peculiar logic that frequently diverged from the direction of the autonomic nervous system. The heart appeared to be sending meaningful messages to the brain that it not  only understood, but also obeyed (Lacey and Lacey, 1978).

Later, neurophysiologists discovered a neural pathway and mechanism whereby input from the heart to the brain could inhibit or facilitate the brain’s electrical activity (McCraty, 2002)

The brain in the heart:

After extensive research, Armour (1994) introduced the concept of functional ‘heart brain’. His work revealed that the heart has a complex intrinsic nervous system that is sufficiently sophisticated to qualify as a ‘little brain’ in its own right. The heart’s brain is an intricate network of several types of neurons, neurotransmitters, proteins and support cells similar to those found in the brain proper. Its elaborate circuitry enables it to act independently of the cranial brain – to learn, remember, and even feel  and sense. The heart’s nervous system contains around 40,000 neurons, called sensory neurites (Armour, 1991).

Information from the heart – including feeling sensations – is sent to the brain through several afferents. These afferent nerve pathways enter the brain at the area of the medulla, and cascade up into the higher centres of the brain, where they may influence perception, decision making and other cognitive processes (Armour, 2004).

Thus, it was revealed that the heart has its own intrinsic nervous system that operates and processes information  independently of the brain or nervous system. This is what allows a heart transplant to work. Normally, the heart communicates with the brain via nerve fibres running through the vagus nerve and the spinal column. In a heart transplant, these nerve connections do not reconnect for an extended period of time; in the meantime, the transplanted heart is able to function in its new host only through the capacity of its intact, intrinsic nervous system (Murphy, et al, 2000)

The heart’s magnetic field:

Research has also revealed that the heart communicates information to the brain and throughout the body via electromagnetic field interactions. The heart generates the body’s  most powerful and most extensive rhythmic electromagnetic field. The heart’s magnetic component is about 500 times stronger than the brain’s magnetic field and can be detected several feet away from the body. It was proposed that, this  heart field acts as a carrier wave for information that provides a global synchronizing signal for the entire body (McCraty, Bradley & Tomasino, 2004)

Heart field interactions between individuals

There is now evidence that a subtle yet influential electromagnetic or ‘energetic’ communication system operates just below our conscious awareness. Energetic interactions possibly contribute to the ‘magnetic’ attractions or repulsions that occur between individuals, and also affect social relationships. It was also found that one person’s brain waves can synchronize to another person’s heart (McCraty, 2004).

Communication via hormones: the heart as a hormonal gland

Another component of the heart-brain communication system was provided by researchers studying  the hormonal system. The heart was reclassified as an endocrine gland when, in 1983, a hormone produced and released by the heart called atrial natriuretic factor (ANF) was isolated. This hormone exerts its effect on the blood vessels, on the kidneys, the adrenal glands, and on a large number of regulatory regions in the brain. It was also found that the heart contains a cell type known as ‘intrinsic cardiac adrenergic’’ (ICA) cells. Theses cells release noradrenaline and dopamine neurotransmitters,  once thought to be produced only by neurons in the CNS. More recently, it was discovered that the heart also secretes  oxytocin, commonly referred to as the ‘love’ or bonding hormone. In addition to its functions in childbirth and lactation, recent evidence indicates that this hormone is also involved in cognition, tolerance, adaptation, complex sexual and maternal behaviours, learning social cues and the establishment of enduring pair bonds. Concentrations of oxytocin in the heart were found to be as high as those found in the brain (Cantin & Genest, 1986).[12]

2. What We Say

God states, “Death and Life are in the power of the tongue”[13]. Positive words produce energy for health and peace, whereas negative words result in confusion and disease.

Positive words can be expressed in praise, verbal blessings, audible prayers and cries to God. The Words of God are alive and powerful:

For the word of God is living and active, sharper than any two-edged sword, piercing to the division of soul and of spirit, of joints and of marrow, and discerning the thoughts and intentions of the heart. Hebrews 4:12

We are also instructed:

My son, be attentive to my words; incline your ear to my sayings. Let them not escape from your sight; keep them within your heart. For they are life to those who find them, and healing to all their flesh. Keep your heart with all vigilance, for from it flow the springs of life. Proverbs 4:20-23

Negative words are expressed by such things as curses, ridicule, mocking, gossip and false accusations. God compares such words to poison, fire , venom and arrows because of the effect they have on the physical body.

A man who bears false witness against his neighbor is like a war club, or a sword, or a sharp arrow. Proverbs 25:18

So also the tongue is a small member, yet it boasts of great things. How great a forest is set ablaze by such a small fire! And the tongue is a fire, a world of unrighteousness. The tongue is set among our members, staining the whole body, setting on fire the entire course of life, and set on fire by hell. For every kind of beast and bird, of reptile and sea creature, can be tamed and has been tamed by mankind, but no human being can tame the tongue. It is a restless evil, full of deadly poison. James 3:5-8

who whet their tongues like swords, who aim bitter words like arrows, Psalms 64:3

“Their throat is an open grave; they use their tongues to deceive.” “The venom of asps is under their lips.” Romans 3:13

Negative words must be neutralized with verbal blessings, or they will do greater damage to our health. We are told by Christ and Paul:

“But I say to you who hear, Love your enemies, do good to those who hate you, bless those who curse you, pray for those who abuse you”. Luke 6:27-28

“Bless those who persecute you; bless and do not curse them”. Romans 12:14

3. What We Do

God designed man to function in intricate cause and effect sequences. He prescribed a way of life that is consistent with His holy standards. If these standards are violated by our lifestyle or behavior, we will experience corresponding consequences in our health and length of life.

Many times a lifestyle of promiscuity destroys the immune system and introduces destructive viruses to the body with the result of fatal diseases.

4. What We Eat

Our body needs proper nutrition. Note: your ability to digest food and assimilate its nutritional value is determined by what you think, say and do.

5. What We Inherit

Each of us inherits a genetic predisposition to death through Adam’s transgression. We each have genetic tendencies toward certain diseases. We also have in our body opportunistic agents that are ready to spring into action just as soon as our immune systems are too weak to stop them. These disease factors include Bacteria, Viruses, Parasites and Fungi.

When the stresses of anger, guilt, lust, bitterness, greed, fear and envy are resolved by obeying the commands of Christ, the sickness or disease they caused often clears up.

Then shall your light break forth like the dawn, and your healing shall spring up speedily; your righteousness shall go before you; the glory of the Lord shall be your rear guard. Isaiah 58:8


[1] Spiros Zodhiates, The Complete Word Study Dictionary – New Testament, (Chattanooga, TN: AMG Publishers, 1993), WORDsearch CROSS e-book, 793.

[2] William E. Vine, Vine’s Expository Dictionary of Old Testament and New Testament Words, (Nashville, TN: Thomas Nelson, 1940), WORDsearch CROSS e-book, Under: “Purge”. See Hebrews 9:14 & 9:22

[3] Spiros Zodhiates, The Complete Word Study Dictionary – New Testament, (Chattanooga, TN: AMG Publishers, 1993), WORDsearch CROSS e-book, 793.

[4] Ibid, under “iáomai”.

[5] Ibid, p. 1353.

[6] Nancy S. Wexler, Clairvoyance and Caution: Repercussions from the Human Genome Project. The Code of Codes: Scientific and Social Issues in the Human Genome Project. D.J. Kevles and L. Hood (Eds) Harvard University Press, 1992, 211-243 at http://www.hdfoundation.org/html/clair.php

[7] Ibid.

[9] Boeree, C. George, Ph.D. “General Psychology”. Epublication, 4/21/2008 found at: http://www.scribd.com/doc/6004602/general-psychology-etext

[13] Proverbs 18:21a

For more information get “How to Resolve 7 Deadly Stresses” published by the Institute in Basic Life Principles, Inc, 2008. www.iblp.org


A mommy was out walking with her 4 year old daughter. She picked up something off the ground and started to put it in her mouth. The cautious Mom took the item away from her and asked her not to do that.
“Why?” her daughter asked.
“Because it’s been on the ground, you don’t know where it’s been, it’s dirty and probably has germs”
Her daughter looked up at her Mom with total admiration and asked, “Mommy, how do you know all this stuff? You are so smart.”
The Mom quickly replied: “All moms know this stuff. It’s on the Mommy Test. You have to know it, or they don’t let you be a Mommy.”
They walked along in silence for 2 or 3 minutes, and the little girl seemed deep in thought.
“OH…I get it!” she beamed, “So if you don’t pass the test you have to be the daddy.”
“Exactly” the mommy replied back with a big smile on my face.

Actually, there is no test to become a Mom, but even brief rundown of some of the job descriptions of a Mom are overwhelming:

Dentist, Taxi driver, Doctor/Surgeon (stuffed animals), Lawyer, Policewoman, Coroner- (for pets), Coach, Teacher, Cook (apple jacks)/Chef (macaroni and cheese), Laundress, Dishwasher, Maid, Nurse – until we get our MD which happens after kid #2, Personal dresser, Personal shopper, Personal assistant, Secretary, Rocking chair, Singer, Artist, Diaper changer, Seamstress, Groomer, Cheerleader, Plumber, Counselor, Tissue (Mom’s clothes work better) Food taster, Tickler and Pudding lid licker.

With all these responsibilities, is it any wonder that Mom’s mess up from time to time? Sometimes Mom’s flunk the Mommy Test!

Lydia and I were in Archie last year playing golf at Blackberry Trails. We were on the fourth hole when we get a frantic call from our fifth child, Lindsey. She was headed out to the garage to go shopping with our 8th grandchild, Laila. Laila was just seven months old. She had her in her seat that snaps into the pedestal in the car. She forgot to get something, so she sets the seat on the counter top, and goes up to her bedroom. She hears a horrid sounding “crash” and Laila lets out this blood-curdling scream. She runs downstairs to see Laila lying face down on their hard tile flor, with the baby-seat on top of her. She picks her up and sees a huge bruise and knot forming on her forehead.

When Lydia got the call, she was frantic as well. She immediately left and met Lindsey at the hospital.

Lindsey had one of those Mommy Mess-Up moments. She just didn’t think that a seven month old could wiggle and kick that much. Lindsey had her first experience with “mommy guilt’, but praise God, Laila was fine. It seems that God designed little babies with “mess-up’s” in mind. Their little head bones are still forming and can take an accidental fall very well.

An important aspect of being a Mom is learning how to deal with “Mommy Mess-up’s!

Ali Landry is an actress, model, ABC’s Superstars celebrity participant, and founder of children’s clothing line Belle Parish, and became mom to Estela in 2007.

“As a mom, I almost always feel guilty.  I think it’s just part of being a mom, never feeling like you have enough time for the kids, your husband, yourself!  It’s a daily struggle to be the best wife, mother, daughter etc. I can be.  There just aren’t enough hours in the day.”

Now that my daughter’s a little older (2-1/2), I’m no longer so germ phobic.  I no longer feel like I need to clean off everything that falls on the ground before she sticks it back in her mouth.  A few germs are good for kids!”

If a few germs are good for kid’s are “mess-ups” good for Moms?

Wiktionary defines “mess up” as:

  • To make a mess of; to untidy, disorder, soil, or muss. “The afternoon breeze messed up my hair.”
  • To cause a problem with; to introduce an error or mistake in; to make muddled or confused; spoil; ruin. “The change messed something up, and it’s not working anymore.”
  • To botch, bungle; to perform poorly on. “Well, I messed up my solo, but otherwise it was a good concert.”
  • To make a mistake; to do something incorrectly; to perform poorly. “He has a hard time getting started because he’s afraid he’ll mess up.”
  • To cause (another person) to make unwanted mistakes in a given task, usually through distraction or obnoxious behavior. “Stop bumping me! You keep messing me up!”
  • To damage; injure. “He messed up his elbow at the track meet.”
  • To discombobulate, utterly confuse, or confound psychologically; to throw into a state of mental disarray. “That girl totally messed me up, man. I’m not sure who I am anymore.”

Mom’s learn that messes are a fact of Motherhood:

As one Mom writes:
The morning starts off with spilled milk and sticky crumbs on the kitchen floor, progresses to tomato juice dumped on the carpet, includes a stopped-up sink and a visit to the emergency room, and finishes up with the dog meeting a skunk.  Throw in a call from your husband telling you he’s bringing company home for dinner — “just something casual, hon.”
Sometimes we really mess up.
Sometimes — for a lot of different reasons — we are reckless, or clueless, or just plain mean.  We’re spoiling for a fight.  We indulge our sarcastic streak.
Our families suffer for our thoughtlessness and mistakes.  Sometimes, for a little while, we just don’t care.
We blame the kids or we blame our husband.  We blame our mothers, the neighbors, or the girl at the check-out counter.  We blame just about anyone or anything else that  allows us not to take responsibility for our own actions and failures.  We justify our own behaviour, even if only to ourselves.
After all, we’re the mom, right?

And that is why we feel so bad, later on, when we realize just how much we messed up.

Whether it was an honest mistake, or something we did purposefully, messing up has consequences to our families, our friends, and to ourselves.
Sometimes our carelessness causes harm or serious pain to someone we love.  Or our mistakes disappoint them.  Perhaps our bad attitude causes someone we love to try on a bad attitude for themselves.
What do we do then?
What do we do when we’ve run over the cat with the car because we were in a hurry?
How do we handle it when we forget our daughter’s kindergarten Thanksgiving feast?
How do we respond when we hear our sarcastic attitude coming out of our son’s mouth?
These are the moments we are glad our families cannot fire us.  Because we supervise our own work, it is up to us to fix the mess.  We must come up with our own remediation plan.

The truth is, Mom’s can try to fix the messes, come up with your own remediation plan, but you will continue to suffer from “Mommy Guilt”. God has a better way to deal with mess-up’s. God can even deal with Mom’s who are totally messed up!

How Does God deal with Mommy Mess-Up’s?

1.  Moms that Mess Up are the Rule

Romans 5:12 (ESV) Therefore, just as sin came into the world through one man, and death through sin, and so death spread to all men because all sinned…

The very first Mom messed up. In fact, she and her husband are the reason all mom’s mess up.

Genesis 3:1-7 (NLT) 1 The serpent was the shrewdest of all the wild animals the Lord God had made. One day he asked the woman, “Did God really say you must not eat the fruit from any of the trees in the garden?” “Of course we may eat fruit from the trees in the garden,” the woman replied.  “It’s only the fruit from the tree in the middle of the garden that we are not allowed to eat. God said, ‘You must not eat it or even touch it; if you do, you will die.’” “You won’t die!” the serpent replied to the woman. “God knows that your eyes will be opened as soon as you eat it, and you will be like God, knowing both good and evil.” The woman was convinced. She saw that the tree was beautiful and its fruit looked delicious, and she wanted the wisdom it would give her. So she took some of the fruit and ate it. Then she gave some to her husband, who was with her, and he ate it, too. At that moment their eyes were opened, and they suddenly felt shame at their nakedness. So they sewed fig leaves together to cover themselves.

Everything is under the Curse of Sin

Because of Adam and Eve’s collosal mess-up, sin (mess-up’s) entered this world. This world and everything in it is under the curse of sin. Mom’s are going to mess up, and they will continue to feel guilt over their mess-ups.

On the website “True Mom Confessions”, Mom’s can post there mess-up’s anonymously. There are literally thousands of anonymous confessions. I have picked some of the “tamer” ones, posted this past week:

From True Mom Confessions

  • every time my two year old eats she does it with her mouth open..i want to kick her across the room anytime she eats within my hearing range.ive told her to close her mouth time and time again and now she does it on purpose
  • if i could have a do-over, id take it in a heartbeat. i hate my kids, my husband and life.
  • My sister is not bathing her 2 yr old or brushing his teeth because he doesn’t like it. She gives him a sponge-down and lets him chew on his brush for a minute instead. Am I overreacting when I say I think that’s just plain old bad parenting, JUST because he doesn’t like it they don’t do it?? He still has cradle cap coz they never wash his hair!
  • So mad at the boys yesterday. So mad. Damian (age 3) pooped his underwear (as if this isnt bad enough) and then proceeded to wipe it on the living room window. Then (yep, theres more!) Brayden (age 22 months) put his hands in it and smeared it on the window. And it wasn’t like they were being unsupervised either! Grant was in the same room with them and I was walking back and forth doing laundry, just didn’t realize what they were doing. Disgusting!
  • I failed. I did not protect my little boy from a savage dog attack. I did not keep my promise of me always keeping my babies safe. I lied to them; because it is NOT safe here .. I hear sirens and dogs barking everywhere in the air. I failed to Keep my young beings’ safe and innocent. I hate that bull mastiff so much I wish I knew where he was..
  • I’m the mom with the 17 year old pregnant daughter. I told her to get and job and be out of the house in a month tonight. How did I ever raise such a spoiled brat? And yes this pregnancy is a mistake and this baby is a mistake. I told her if she chooses adoption then I would pay for college like I promised. If she chooses to continue this charade of adulthood then she’s on her own. I know some people don’t agree but this isn’t how I raised my daughter. I’ve never understood parents that pay for their adult children. It’s not going to be me.
  • WISH MOTHERS DAY WAS OVER ALREADY, MINE HAS PASSED AWAY, AND I CAN’T HAVE A BABY. UGH. THIS IS THE HARDEST WEEK OF THE YEAR FOR ME. SORRY MOMS!

Yes, Mom’s and women mess up, deal with guilt, deal with frustration, and yes, even hate their lives. This is the sad state of mankind. That is what Paul wrote in Romans 5:

Romans 5:12-14 (ESV) 12 Therefore, just as sin came into the world through one man, and death through sin, and so death spread to all men because all sinned— for sin indeed was in the world before the law was given…and death reigned from Adam to Moses, even over those whose sinning was not like the transgression of Adam…

Mom’s all all under the curse of sin, and so death reigns over our lives. That little baby you bring into this world, that brings you so much joy, will also bring you sadness, heartache, and there is nothing you can do about it, except to see things God’s way!

We Need Someone who can “Reverse the Curse”

So Mom’s, and Dad’s, we need something to reverse this curse, and turn life into a Blessing! We need something else to reign over death! Glory be to God, there is an answer to our messes, even when our lives are totally messed up! That answer is Jesus!

2.  Moms that Mess Up can receive the Wonderful Grace of Jesus!

  • Romans 5:15 (ESV) But the free gift is not like the trespass. For if many died through one man’s trespass, much more have the grace of God and the free gift by the grace of that one man Jesus Christ abounded for many.
  • Romans 5:20 (ESV) Now the law came in to increase the trespass, but where sin increased, grace abounded all the more…

“Trespass or offense” is paraptōma, “a falling alongside, a deviation from the right path.” A “Mess-up”

The glorious truth about “Mommy Mess-ups” is they show you your need for a Savior! Your mess-ups can open your heart to see your need for Jesus Christ! And when Jesus becomes your Savior and Lord, He gives a wonderful gift to you-the wonderful Grace of God.

In fact, wherever “mess-up’s ” abound, the grace of God abounds even more.

My dad moved us up to Prairie Village when I was five years old. He and mom had to leave their family in Ft Worth TX and move to a city where they knew no one. On top of that, Dad’s new job required him to travel 4 and 5 days a week. I was 5, my brother was 4 and we had a new baby brother. My brother John was one of those “impossible” kids. He was born rebellious. Nothing seemed to work. I can remember my mom chasing him all through the house, trying to spank him with a hair brush. One time she spanked him so hard it broke the hair brush, but John just kept laughing at her. It didn’t phase him. Mom’s favorit expression to yell was “Wait till your father get’s home Friday!” Mom and Dad had problems over this change in their life. I remember at about the age of 8 having to go live with a business associate of my dad’s. Mom had to go away. She was gone for a couple months. I learned when I was in my teens that Mom had had a nervous breakdown. She couldn’t cope with all the problems, with dad being gone, with her guilt, with her anger, with all of her “mess-up’s.” The mess-ups had gotten so bad that now her life was “messed-up.”

One thing that happened after Mom came home was we started going to a church down the street. Prairie Baptist Church. I started learning about a man named Jesus. Mom started to pray with us and even read the Bible with us. After Glen Conus and Myrl Scofield made about 15 visits with my Dad, he started going to church.

Things began to be different in our home. Mom was different. Dad was different. John was still John, but Mom could deal with him now. Dad still traveled, but managed to be home more often.

What Happened?

My Mom and Dad had found Jesus! God had showered them with Grace, the power to do what they ought to do! The power to do what they couldn’t do!

God’s Grace Enables Me by Janet Mullaly

I Know it’s the Spirit who is at work within me,
cause I can’t do these things by myself.
I have tried and I’ve tried
but it’s always the same on my own
Everything is a mess.
I give praise to my Lord
I give Praise to my King
I give glory and honor to God
For it is Him and not me
This I clearly  do see
It’s His Grace
That enables me!

God’s grace is far more effective and powerful than any single mess-up or a bunch of mess-ups! God’s Grace can forgive and even transform the worst of “messed-up” Mom’s.

Now I’m not implying that only Mom’s mess up. No, men and women alike all mess up. What I am saying is that even the worst mess-up’s can be covered and forgiven by the grace of God!

In fact, Paul describes himself as the Chief of “Mess-up’s”: 1 Timothy 1:15 (KJV) This is a faithful saying, and worthy of all acceptation, that Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners; of whom I am chief.

Jesus Came to Reverse the Curse!

  • “For He hath made him to be sin for us, who knew no sin; that we might be made the righteousness of God in him” (2 Cor. 5:21).
  • “But God, who is rich in mercy, for his great love wherewith he loved us, even when we were dead in sins, hath quickened us together with Christ, (by grace ye are saved;) and hath raised us up together, and made us sit together in heavenly places in Christ Jesus: that in the ages to come he might show the exceeding riches of his grace in his kindness toward us through Christ Jesus. For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God: not of works, lest any man should boast” (Ephes. 2:4-9).
  • “And the grace of our Lord was exceeding abundant with faith and love which is in Christ Jesus. This is a faithful saying, and worthy of all acceptation, that Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners” (1 Tim. 1:14-15).
  • “…His grace, wherein he hath made us accepted in the beloved” (Ephes. 1:6).

Mom’s, when you place your life, your “mess-up’s in Jesus hands, you are surrounded by His grace. Your mess-ups may be simply because of the place you are in life-but in Christ, you are totally accepted in the beloved!

Donald Whitney in Simplify Your Spiritual Life.  “Like Jean with three in diapers, you may be in a situation that curtails many of your spiritual activities.  You may be looking at many months or even years of such limitations.  Do what you can.  God does not love us more when we do more, nor less when we do less.  He accepts us, not because of what we do for Him, but because of what He’s done for us in Christ.  The Bible says,”He made us accepted in the Beloved [that is, Jesus}” (Eph. 1:6).  And nothing “shall be able to separate us form the love of God which is in Christ Jesus our Lord” (Rom. 8:39). Love God, and within the limitations He has sovereignly placed in your life at this time, do what you can.”

No matter your mess-up, no matter how bad it was, or is, in Jesus Christ, you are accepted and beloved by God! His grace gives you the power to overcome the worst of mess-ups.

Does that mean life will be rosy after coming to Jesus? No! Christian Mom’s mess-up just like non-Christian Mom’s.

What’s the difference then? The difference is that now you have the Grace of Jesus to deal with your mess-up’s. You have Grace to carry you through the stress. You have Grace to give you peace when that “mommy-guilt” rears it’s head.

Stress can lead to mess-up’s, mess-up’s can lead to guilt, guilt can lead to regret, regret can lead to depression and despair.

Look at how Jesus handled stress, and a moment when he could have committed an enormous “mess-up!”

For the truth is that if Jesus had to face stress, Mom’s are not exempt. You will continue to face stress, especially because you are a Mom. And when you think you have it licked because they are out of the home on their own, along come the grandkids. The cycle goes on.

So Mom’s need to see how Jesus dealt with stress, stress that could have led to a monumental mess-up. Even Jesus came to experience the grace of His Father.

It was just hours before He was to experience the crucifixion, before He was to experience becoming sin and being separated from His Father. It was the hour when He would experience an infinity of the wrath of God.

His state of psychological stress was so severe that it has since been written about in medical journals: Hematohidrosis is a condition in which the blood vessels around sweat glands dilate to the point of rupture, whereupon the blood flows into the sweat glands – coming out as droplets of blood mixed with sweat.

This is a physical phenomena not frequently experienced, even in the most stressful circumstances. Yet, Jesus found Himself sweating blood on the evening before His crucifixion.

During this period of time, Jesus demonstrated for every Christian how God equips a saint to think about, walk through, and succeed when under necessary STRESS:

S – Scared to death of the
T – Time just ahead, yet
R – Resolving to
E – Exude grace while being willing to
S – Sacrifice our very life, if need be, to
S – Succeed in God’s goals for us.

Jesus was literally “overwhelmed with sorrow”, “full of anguish” and “falling face down” in prayer. But, HE PRAYED!

Moms, when your stressed, when you mess-up, PRAY!

P – Present your fears to God as honestly as you can
R – Relinquish yourself into His hands
A – Agree that He is Sovereign and ask for as much mercy as is possible given His goals
Y – Yield yourself fully to His choices for your future.

Mom’s, Jesus wants you to pray, to come to the THRONE OF GRACE!

  • Hebrews 4:16 (ESV) Let us then with confidence draw near to the throne of grace, that we may receive mercy and find grace to help in time of need.
  • James 4:6-7 (ESV) But he gives more grace. Therefore it says, “God opposes the proud, but gives grace to the humble.” Submit yourselves therefore to God…

God Gives His Wonderful Grace to the Humble. It’s Ok to Mess-up! As the song so aptly announces:

Wonderful grace of Jesus,
Greater than all my sin;
How shall my tongue describe it,
Where shall its praise begin?
Taking away my burden,
Setting my spirit free;
For the wonderful grace of Jesus reaches me.

Refrain

Wonderful the matchless grace of Jesus,
Deeper than the mighty rolling sea;
Wonderful grace, all sufficient for me, for even me.
Broader than the scope of my transgressions,
Greater far than all my sin and shame,
O magnify the precious Name of Jesus.
Praise His Name!

Wonderful grace of Jesus,
Reaching to all the lost,
By it I have been pardoned,
Saved to the uttermost,
Chains have been torn asunder,
Giving me liberty;
For the wonderful grace of Jesus reaches me.

The Water Bearer

Pay attention to this parable of how God uses our “mess-ups” to bring beauty to the lives around us:

A water bearer in China had two large pots, each hung on the ends of a pole which he carried across his shoulders. One of the pots had a crack in it, while the other pot was perfect and always delivered a full portion of water. At the end of the long walk from the stream to the house, the cracked pot arrived only half full. For a full two years this went on daily, with the bearer delivering only one and a half pots full of water to his house. Of course, the perfect pot was perfect for the task for which it was made, and proud of its accomplishments. But the poor cracked pot was ashamed of its own imperfection, and miserable that it was able to accomplish only half of what it had been made to do.

After two years of what it perceived to be a bitter failure, it spoke to the water bearer one day by the stream. “I am ashamed of myself, and I want to apologize to you. I have been able to deliver only half my load because this crack in my side causes water to leak out all the way back to your house. Because of my flaws, you have to do all of this work, and you don’t get full value from your efforts,” the pot said. The bearer said to the pot, “Did you notice that there were flowers only on your side of the path, but not on the other pot’s side? That’s because I have always known about your flaw, and I planted flower seeds on your side of the path, and every day while we walk back, you’ve watered them. For two years I have been able to pick these beautiful flowers to decorate the table. Without your being just the way you are, there would not be this beauty to grace my house.

God is able to work His GRACE in the lives of every humble Mom who is aware of her mess-ups. In fact, God can keep you singing and rejoicing even in the midst of chaos. There will be flowers of beauty springing up all around your tears!

3.  Moms that Mess Up can become Queens in Jesus!

Remember Queen for a Day?

The show opened with host Jack Bailey asking the audience—mostly women—”Would YOU like to be Queen for a day?” After this, the contestants were introduced and interviewed, one at a time, with commercials and fashion commentary interspersed between each contestant.[3]

Using the classic “applause meter”, as did many game and hit-parade style shows of the time, Queen for a Day had its own special twist: each contestant had to talk publicly about the recent financial and emotional hard times she had been through.

Bailey began each interview gently, asking the contestant first about her life and family, and maintaining a positive and upbeat response no matter what she told him. For instance, when a woman said she had a crippled child, he would ask if her second child was “Okay.” On learning that the second child was not crippled, he might say, “Well, that’s good, you have one healthy child.”

The interview would climax with Bailey asking the contestant what she needed most and why she wanted to win the title of Queen for a Day. Often the request was for medical care or therapeutic equipment to help a chronically ill child, but sometimes it was as simple as the need for a hearing aid, a new washing machine, or a refrigerator. Many women broke down sobbing as they described their plights, and Bailey was always quick to comfort them and offer a clean white handkerchief to dry their eyes.

The more harsh the circumstances under which the contestant labored, the likelier the studio audience was to ring the applause meter’s highest level. The winner, to the musical accompaniment of Pomp and Circumstance, would be draped in a sable-trimmed red velvet robe, given a glittering jeweled crown to wear, placed on a velvet-upholstered throne, and handed a dozen long-stemmed roses to hold as she wept, often uncontrollably, while her list of prizes was announced.

The prizes, many of which were donated by sponsoring companies, began with the necessary help the woman had requested, but built from there. They might include a variety of extras, such as a vacation trip, a fully-paid night on the town with her husband or escort, silver-plated flatware, an array of kitchen appliances, and a selection of fashion clothing. The losing contestants were each given smaller prizes; no one went away from the show without a meaningful gift.

Bailey’s trademark sign-off was “This is Jack Bailey, wishing we could make every woman a queen, for every single day!”

But God’s Word says mommies can be QUEEN for all eternity! In fact, even amidst the chaos of motherhood, mommies reign with Jesus!

  • Romans 5:17 (ESV) For if, because of one man’s trespass, death reigned through that one man, much more will those who receive the abundance of grace and the free gift of righteousness reign in life through the one man Jesus Christ.
  • Romans 5:21 (ESV) so that, as sin reigned in death, grace also might reign through righteousness leading to eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord.

Mom’s, you don’t have to have a sob-story to be selected as Queen for a Day! The fact that you know you mess-up is good enough. Simply humble your heart before Jesus Christ, tell him you have messed up, that you need Him to be your Lord and Savior, and guess what, you become Queen for Life!

Jesus Christ reigns over death, over Satan, over sin! He reigns over the worst mess-up. When you place your faith and trust in Jesus Christ, you are born again as a daughter of God! You are a Queen, reigning with your new Husband, Jesus Christ!

You reign, not because you are a super Mom, or a saintly Mom, in fact mistakes are OK! Your righteousness and Queenliness is not based on you, it is because you are in your husband, Jesus Christ! You depend upon His righteousness!

Jesus never messes up! But you will always mess-up!

Remember the next time you feel you are messing up, you lose your temper, you are exhausted so you take it out on your husband- You are a Queen, reigning with Jesus Christ!

Before I was a Mom

Before I was a mom,
I never tripped over toys or forgot words to a lullaby.
I didn’t worry whether or not my plants were poisonous.
I never thought about immunizations.

Before I was a Mom,
I had never been puked on. Pooped on. Chewed on. Peed on.
I had complete control of my mind and my thoughts.
I slept all night.

Before I was a Mom,
I never held down a screaming child so doctors could do tests. Or give shots.
I never looked into teary eyes and cried.
I never got gloriously happy over a simple grin.
I never sat up late hours at night watching a baby sleep.

Before I was a Mom,
I never held a sleeping baby just because I didn’t want to put her down.
I never felt my heart break into a million pieces when I couldn’t stop the hurt.
I never knew that something so small could affect my life so much.
I never knew that I could love someone so much.
I never knew I would love being a Mom.

Before I was a Mom,
I didn’t know the feeling of having my heart outside my body.
I didn’t know how special it could feel to feed a hungry baby.
I didn’t know that bond between a mother and her child.
I didn’t know that something so small could make me feel so important and happy.

Before I was a Mom,
I had never gotten up in the middle of the night every 10 minutes to make sure all was okay.
I had never known the warmth, the joy, the love, the heartache, the wonderment
or the satisfaction of being a Mom.
I didn’t know I was capable of feeling so much,
before I was a Mom .

May you always be overwhelmed by the Grace of God rather than by the cares of Motherhood!

Today, you are on Queen for a Day, but Jesus is saying:

“This is Jesus Christ, and I can make every woman my queen, for every day of their life!