Imitating our Father
Many times we don't grow up with a good model for behavior. We just do what we have been shown to do from childhood without questioning if it is right or not. If we are taught these habits by our parents, we automatically assume they know best, are telling the truth and are showing us the best way to live our life. As children we trust our parents no matter what.
So now you are an adult and are still believing and doing the same things that your parents did...not questioning if what your parents told you or showed you was really the truth.
The truth that sets you free is looking at these things from the past that we have avoided. Facing them...feeling the pain, allowing one to grieve as we say goodbye to the lies and embrace the truth about who we really are and our ultimate purpose.
You don't have to be defined by your past and what you were told. You have a choice to become a new person. Every morning you are given a new day to slowly be transformed into a new person with purpose.
Nothing is overwhelming if you just see it as one-day-at-a-time. That is how everyone changes. Rome wasn't built in a day and it takes awhile to create new, healthy habits. The key is to never give up.
It's okay to fail and fall down. That is how we learn. Just get back up and keep moving forward.
Jesus talked about imitating our earthly father's habits and mindset instead of our heavenly father's. If you have an earthly father who didn't and doesn't worship God, then he most likely didn't teach you God's way of living. He is teaching you man's way...and man's way can often times be self-serving and self-sabotaging.
31 Jesus said to the people who believed in him, “You are truly my disciples if you remain faithful to my teachings. 32 And you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free.”
33 “But we are descendants of Abraham,” they said. “We have never been slaves to anyone. What do you mean, ‘You will be set free’?”
34 Jesus replied, “I tell you the truth, everyone who sins is a slave of sin. 35 A slave is not a permanent member of the family, but a son is part of the family forever. 36 So if the Son sets you free, you are truly free. 37 Yes, I realize that you are descendants of Abraham. And yet some of you are trying to kill me because there’s no room in your hearts for my message. 38 I am telling you what I saw when I was with my Father. But you are following the advice of your father.”
39 “Our father is Abraham!” they declared.
“No,” Jesus replied, “for if you were really the children of Abraham, you would follow his example.[h] 40 Instead, you are trying to kill me because I told you the truth, which I heard from God. Abraham never did such a thing. 41 No, you are imitating your real father.”
They replied, “We aren’t illegitimate children! God himself is our true Father.”
42 Jesus told them, “If God were your Father, you would love me, because I have come to you from God. I am not here on my own, but he sent me. 43 Why can’t you understand what I am saying? It’s because you can’t even hear me! 44 For you are the children of your father the devil, and you love to do the evil things he does. He was a murderer from the beginning. He has always hated the truth, because there is no truth in him. When he lies, it is consistent with his character; for he is a liar and the father of lies. 45 So when I tell the truth, you just naturally don’t believe me! 46 Which of you can truthfully accuse me of sin? And since I am telling you the truth, why don’t you believe me? 47 Anyone who belongs to God listens gladly to the words of God. But you don’t listen because you don’t belong to God.”
So, in healing, one must go back to those things that you were told and that you assumed to be right and true and find out if they are the real truth. If they are good habits or bad habits. So many times, we just react and respond based on HABIT because that is all we know. Unless you are wiling to look at your own responsibility and your own part, you will always stay the victim. You can't change your parents or your spouse or anyone else...but you can make better choices for yourself and the results will be a better life of blessings and less suffering. Stop being your own worst enemy. Start loving and seeing you as God loves and sees you.
I started to take Sundays off as a Sabbath day. I owed God thousands of them over the years and now I am being obedient and taking care of me as well as others because, well, as a therapist once told me, “You’re a person too” and more importantly, I’m a daughter of the King! This has come with years of finally realizing and learning the hard way that my body had not forgotten all the missed day’s off.
After years of owning my own business and working 7 days a week, my body and health had suffered greatly from lack of rest. Even now, as I write this, I have not had a relaxing vacation in over 7 years. With everything I have been through, I have needed to just get away but it has taken all of my energy, time and money to heal and get back on my feet again. After spending another $500 on vet bills on Saturday, there went that vacation weekend…but nothing is stopping me from having a relaxing Sunday.
So, yesterday, I decided to have my worship time riding my bicycle on the beach. There’s something about me getting on my bike that makes me feel so close to God. So many memories of adventures and encounters. Of seeing lovely scenery and climbing hills and valleys and crossing creeks. Getting out in God’s creation.
I put my bicycle in the car and headed to the beach. Everyone had the same idea but I didn’t mind waiting in traffic because there was an interesting sermon I was listening to on the radio. Something I needed to hear.
With my car parked by the shore, I pulled my bike out of my car and headed down the bike trail. My trek started from Huntington Beach to Newport Beach and beyond. I really didn’t have a plan but knew that it was the journey rather than the destination I was interested in. I was listening to classical music on my headsets and thanking God for the wonderful time. I was determined to have a vacation even if it was only for the day.
Thirty minutes into my ride, my back tire went flat.
“Oh no” I declared.
I had my patch kit and pump but the stem had been torn from the inner-tube and couldn’t be repaired. I thought about all of those times that I was riding and had a flat but was always with someone who knew how to fix it. Even though I had an extra inner-tube, I didn’t know how to change it myself.
I realized that my journey back would take at least an hour walking alongside my disabled bicycle. I said a prayer to God,
“Lord, I’m so sorry I didn’t learn how to change a bicycle tire. If I did, I would be able to fix this. Thank you for providing everything I need for the day over and above what I need. Either provide the knowledge or provide someone with the knowledge to help me please. I promise I will learn if you would be so kind as to send me some help. Thank you God.”
I have learned to never worry or get upset when things don’t go as planned because God always seems to show up in a big way. After I said my prayer, I gave it all to God and I just decided I would make the best of my walk and observe all the interesting things on my way back. I noticed beautiful houses and unique people out for their Sunday rides.
It wasn’t 10 minutes later when I was passing a guy sitting in a chair on his porch in his nice beach property. He looked at me and I shrugged and said,
“Flat tire. It’s a long walk back”
He quickly stood up and said,
“Stop! I’m not going to let you do that! Come here. I’ll fix your tire for you.”
It was at that point I realized God answered my prayers again! I don’t have to wait very long before He answers in a big way…and I was just about to find out how big. He walked to his truck parked outside his place and I saw his bike in the back. He had a bike kit with tools. He proceeded to not only change my tire, but slowly tell me step-by-step, how to change my tire the next time it happens. He was patient and kind. I told him he was an angel who showed up and he was not only helping me but teaching me how to fish by teaching me to be able to do it the next time I get a flat.
He said, “I love helping people. I do my best to always be there for people in need”.
I told him I moved down here from Los Angeles a year ago to start a non-profit. He proceeded to tell me his name is Ronnie and that 21 years ago he was homeless and an alcoholic and Jesus saved him and now He speaks to others about how God helped heal him and inspires people and gives them hope.
There are no accidents. There are no coincidences. I have countless stories to tell you of miracles happening. Something goes wrong and I immediately pray for the answer or someone to come along who does have the answer…and within minutes, God performs a miracle. These events are not mathematically possible by chance.
I told Ronnie how proud of him I was and that we need more men like him to become mentors to other men and help lead them on the right path. Everyone can be a part of the solution if they are willing to do the little things to help those in need around them. Become a living testimony.
Ronnie says He is thankful for Jesus and God’s grace and wants to share hope with others. Ronnie is a living testimony as to a solution that works permanently. The Bible promises that we can be transformed by the renewal of our minds.
“Don’t copy the behavior and customs of this world, but let God transform you into a new person by changing the way you think. Then you will learn to know God’s will for you, which is good and pleasing and perfect.” Romans 12:2
I realized some people are filled with demons and some people are filled with angels. I’m glad there are angels walking around who listen to the Holy Spirit’s prompting. Someone is praying for us to show up to help and it’s up to us to listen to that voice of the Holy Spirit. Thank you Ronnie. Thank you God for taking care of me like you always do and always will.
“Keep on loving each other as brothers and sisters.Don’t forget to show hospitality to strangers, for some who have done this have entertained angels without realizing it! Remember those in prison, as if you were there yourself. Remember also those being mistreated, as if you felt their pain in your own bodies.” Hebrews 13:1-3