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Forgiveness of Self
A PROCESS OF CHANGE
The word "reconciliation" refers to the process of recognizing that we have the desire to do what is good, but we cannot carry it out and the process of recognizing that it is God who works in you to will and to act according to his good purpose. The bottom line is that it is not our process but God's process. He can do a much better job of changing something thoroughly and He can adjust everything to His standard.
"Blame holds us back. Responsibility moves us forward. Constant self-blame is just as irresponsible as insisting that others are always to blame." ~Thom Rutledge
For those of us struggling with addiction and disorder, it is not too long before we encounter blame. It is an insidious creature; it is virtually impossible to escape.
Since our addictive natures are usually heavily intertwined with other complicated life issues, like abuse and trauma, blame often surfaces as a coping device, used to enable us to simply function in our lives. Survival is as far as we can go; healthy flourishing appears to be an out of reach luxury.
we thank You for Dvora who has put so much work into this workshop....
we ask Your mighty blessings upon her and her teachings today....
open our hearts, spirits and minds to the Biblical truths you would have us learn.....
Bring healing to everyone who comes here today.....
in the name of Jesus we pray. Amen.
…the LORD seeth not as man seeth; for man looketh on the outward appearance, but the LORD looketh on the heart." 1 Samuel 16:7
This time of year assaults us with the obvious "too much" of the holiday season: red and green, Santas, nativity scenes, silver bells and sensory overload at every turn.
During this season, we also see the abundance of angels. It's almost as much of an association with Christmas as the Baby Savior Himself.
And suddenly there was with the angel a multitude of the heavenly host praising God, and saying, "Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace, good will toward men." Luke 2:13-14
Indeed, angels are everywhere throughout Scripture:
For he shall give his angels charge over thee, to keep thee in all thy ways. Psalm 91:11
"The Son of man shall send forth his angels, and they shall gather out of his kingdom all things that offend, and them which do iniquity." Matthew 13:41
And he saith unto him, "Verily, verily, I say unto you, Hereafter ye shall see heaven open, and the angels of God ascending and descending upon the Son of man." John 1:51
We can get addicted to anything.
I say that to spotlight the trophy's importance. This was recently brought to my attention as I came across a humorous social media post:
"Ironic that every trophy store looks massively unsuccessful…"
The power, the lure, the snare of the trophy…
For where envy and self-seeking exist, confusion and every evil thing are there. James 3:16
With all of the disordered beliefs and actions I have been mired in, an underlying common denominator existed. It was achievement.
He that getteth wisdom loveth his own soul: he that keepeth understanding shall find good." Proverbs 19:8
As with most families this time of year, my husband and I commemorate the season with holiday decorations. That décor, however, is threatened by two factors: our cats, Gracie and Glory.
And, it is in this holiday decoration/feline context where I started thinking about the power of negative consequences.
The Book of Proverbs is especially loaded with helpful warnings for particular behaviors. It comes down to wisdom versus foolishness, pride versus humility, willingness to learn versus stubbornly and repeatedly making the same poor choices.
Hear counsel, and receive instruction, that thou mayest be wise in thy latter end. Proverbs 19:20
Judgments are prepared for scorners, and stripes for the back of fools. Proverbs 19:29
Like it or not, we live in a cause and effect world. Many of us who battle with addiction, disorder and compulsion have already felt certain unpleasant consequences like lost jobs, wrecked relationships, health issues and excruciating moments of embarrassment.
A time comes in your life when you finally get it. When in the midst of all your fears and insanity you stop dead your tracks and somewhere the voice inside your head cries out ENOUGH! Enough fighting and crying or struggling to hold on. And, like a child quieting down after a blind tantrum, your sobs begin to subside, you shutter once or twice, you blink back your tears and through a mantle of wet lashes you begin to look at the world through new eyes.
This is your awakening.
You realize that it’s time to stop hoping and waiting for something to change, or for, happiness, safety and security to come galloping over the next horizon. You come to terms with the fact she is not Cinderella and you are not Prince charming , and that in the real world there aren’t always fairy tale endings or beginnings for that matter, and;
That any guarantee of “happily ever after” must begin with you. And in the process, a sense of serenity is born of acceptance.
You awaken to the fact that you are not perfect, and that not everyone will always love,
Appreciate or approve of who or what you are and that’s OK. They are entitled to their own Views and opinions).
And you learn the importance of loving and championing yourself, and ...sense of newly found confidence is born -- of "self-approval."
You stop complaining and blaming other people for the things they did to you (or didn’t do for you) – And you learn that the only thing you can really count on is the unexpected.
You learn that people don’t always say what they mean or mean what they say, and that
Not everyone will always be there for you, and that it’s not always about you. So, you
Airbrushing is an all too common technique used in the fashion and beauty industries. In our current cultural landscape, you and I would be hard pressed to find a magazine cover which is not "retouched" in some way.
In 2003, actress Kate Winslet was quite vocal about her airbrushed body. She speaks of her experience with "GQ Magazine," along with their choice to feature her manipulated image on its cover...
"The retouching is excessive. I do not look like that and more importantly I don't desire to look like that. I can tell you they've reduced the size of my legs by about a third."
Scripture tells us we are to be a peculiar people:
But ye are a chosen generation, a royal priesthood, an holy nation, a peculiar people; that ye should shew forth the praises of him who hath called you out of darkness into his marvelous light. 1 Peter 2:9
And, most of the time, that doesn't seem to stack up well against our limited definitions of beauty.
Yes, we have opened up more variance with image, reflecting multicultural, unique features. Still, we often seem to like to fall back on what is widely known, accepted and comfortable. Ergo, for example, tall, thin, blue eyes, blonde hair, on Caucasian skin tones.
When you think of an eating or image disorder, what springs to mind?
If we're honest, often our knee-jerk characterization is female. A lot of us think disorders, such as anorexia or bulimia, are a "women's issue."
But what about the male gender?
"In the United States, 20 million women and 10 million men suffer from a clinically significant eating disorder at some time in their life, including anorexia nervosa, bulimia nervosa, binge eating disorder, or an eating disorder not otherwise specified (EDNOS). For various reasons, many cases are likely not to be reported. In addition, many individuals struggle with body dissatisfaction and sub-clinical disordered eating attitudes and behaviors, and the best-known contributor to the development of anorexia nervosa and bulimia nervosa is body dissatisfaction." www.nationaleatingdisorders.org
Unfortunately, both the male and female genders suffer from distorted and disordered image messages and practices. Perhaps, males don't always possess the same behaviors as those of their female counterparts. Nevertheless, the obsession and self-destructive evidence is there. And, at some of its most extreme, it often manifests in the bodybuilding arena.
"...The onset of disease in males is typically triggered by a concern with bodybuilding and sport training..."