Reconciliation

The Truth Shall Set You Free - Part 3Premium Content

See: Part 1 | Part 2 | Part 3 | Part 4 | Part 5 | Part 6 | Part 7 | Part 8 | Part 9 | Part 10

In the second installment, I testified how God's Word -- His Truth -- set me on the road to freedom, not just freedom from alcohol, but also freedom to become the man God wants me to be.

Presumably the story could have ended there. After all, I had hit rock bottom, knew despair and loneliness, hated the person I really was, and all of this ended by the intervention of my Lord Jesus. Not only did He intervene but He showed me truth in His word, and that truth set me free.

End of story. Let the violins swell up to a crescendo while you see me disappearing into a beautiful landscape of life wonderful.

You are not logged in. Full article & information available to those who support the ministry through membership.
Please: Log in or Join Now

The Truth Shall Set You Free - Part 2Premium Content

See: Part 1 | Part 2 | Part 3 | Part 4 | Part 5 | Part 6 | Part 7 | Part 8 | Part 9 | Part 10

We all want to be free. The desire to be free is part of our make-up, and that means God gave us that desire. In my case, I want to be free to be the man God wants me to be. I have always wanted that. Wanting and achieving are two different things, however.

I have fears. These fears weigh me down. What caused them? I have ideas, theories, and sometimes even valid reasons why these fears exist. But, what matters is how I have handled these fears. Some people grow out of them. I didn't. I took them with me into adulthood. And, in doing that I thought maybe I could use them in my favor. The best thing to do was to plan, anticipate, scheme, and prepare. The overall plan for the day was to control, control, control. That took a lot of thought. In the process I became an insomniac.

And, over time, I became an alcoholic.

Why? Because as life happened, it got more complex and there were too many loose ends. The pain of seeing these dangling ends was too much. Alcohol took care of that and, in an odd way, it helped. I could sit up at night and plan, anticipate, scheme, and prepare and be energized by the alcohol.

You are not logged in. Full article & information available to those who support the ministry through membership.
Please: Log in or Join Now

The Truth Shall Set You Free - Part 1Premium Content

My name is Michael the Penguin and I am a Christian in recovery.

I would like to think out loud with the rest of you for a while. One of my favorite verses in Scripture is John 8:32: You shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free. It seems, at first, to be a "no-brainer" in terms of interpretation:
(1) It is Jesus talking;
(2) He is the truth; and
(3) we can find freedom in life through Him.

The application to anyone in recovery is also obvious: in recovery we want to be free of our addictions, but we know we need to find a deeper freedom in order to achieve that. It is one thing to stop drinking, drugging, etc., but it is another thing to remain free and also have a life centered in God. The Steps are the tried and true way of helping any of us to find the freedom to be the person God wants us to be. For us as Christians, Scripture is a big part of those Steps. To me, Scripture is just about the one tried and true source of revelation from God. I can state categorically that Scripture is why I have remained sober for 12 years: the study, absorption and application of God's truths for me.

You are not logged in. Full article & information available to those who support the ministry through membership.
Please: Log in or Join Now

Do You Know You are Chosen and What it Means?

Psalm 89:3a (NRSV) "I have made a covenant with my chosen one."

There is amazing power in this statement for three reasons. The first is that we -- as God's adopted children -- were chosen by Him! Isn't that wonderful? It's beyond comprehension for me that, at the beginning of creation, even before time began, God looked down at all the souls and chose me! (He chose every person who would respond to His love and His call to salvation). Paul writes:

Just as He chose us in Christ before the foundation of the world to be holy and blameless before Him in love. He destined us for adoption as His children through Jesus Christ, according to the good pleasure of His will, to the praise of His glorious grace that He freely bestowed on us in the Beloved. Ephesians 1:4-6 NRSV

I'm adopted. My birth mom, as I understand it, was an unwed pregnant teen and, with an amazing amount of courage, understood that she was ill prepared to care for a baby. So, my parents who couldn't have children, chose to adopt me. They didn't have to. They could have even come to the hospital, viewed my bald head and tiny feet, and rejected me. But they didn't. Instead, my parents chose me and gave me a wonderful home and childhood.

When Families FightPremium Content

Who in the entire universe knows you better than your family? Who do you spend at least the first 18 years together with on a daily basis (in functional families)? You eat together, talk together, go places together, worship together, pray together, have fun together, grow together and so on. If you've ever watched the television show 7th Heaven, you may be aware of their opening theme song:

"Mmmm, 7th Heaven, when I see their happy faces smiling back at me, 7th Heaven, I know there's no greater feeling than the love of family. Where can you go, when the world don't treat you right? The answer is home; it's the one place that you find, 7th Heaven, mmmmm 7th Heaven."

If you haven't figured out by now, I'm a BIG fan of the show - watch it everyday on Vision TV. But they have a point; where in the world can you go when you are not treated right, if not your family?

I like 7th Heaven because it shows a fairly accurate representation of what a typical functioning family's dynamics are like. Brothers and sisters fight amongst each other but when it comes to someone else interfering or hurting one of them, they all come together an support and lift each other up. They may fight for a few days, but eventually, they get past the hurtful words, betrayal or bribe and become that loving, caring and united family they desire to be.

In our world today, there are possibly more broken families than in our long history behind us. Divorce is more common now than in any other time and is more accepted. Children are abusing their bodies with cigarettes, alcohol, drugs, sex and self-abuse of other forms. Predators hungry for power and sex are everywhere and our justice systems offers very little justice for the victims of violence.

You are not logged in. Full article & information available to those who support the ministry through membership.
Please: Log in or Join Now

When Only One Spouse is Willing to Work on the Marriage - Part 2Premium Content

See Part 1

What do you do when only one spouse wants to work on saving the marriage; or what can you do when your spouse wants a divorce and you don't? Or how can you save a marriage when a spouse says they are not in love with you anymore?

Don't give up on the marriage!

Don't give up just because someone tells you to find someone new or thinks you should leave your marriage. They don't know what you need—only God can fill your needs. No matter what, you'll still be married to your first husband or wife, so don't get any funny ideas in your head such as remarriage because that is not going to solve the real problem. Divorce does not solve hardened hearts or a faithless walk.

Sometimes the spouse that thinks they want out of the marriage is going through troubling times at the moment and regrets ever saying that or doing things that are damaging to the marriage. Don't give up! Pray about it and ask Jesus Christ to bring you contentment and peace.

You are not logged in. Full article & information available to those who support the ministry through membership.
Please: Log in or Join Now

When You Have Nothing LeftPremium Content

"We have nothing left," the woman told me. "Absolutely nothing." She looked at the floor and shook her head.

Her husband, Chip gambled at the horse races and bought countless lottery tickets. He blew his paycheck, their money in the checkbook, and their retirement fund.

"My parents lent us money, but he gambled that away too."

She dabbed her eyes and continued, "Chip returned to the horse races to win back his losses, but of course, he didn't." She held her hand to her forehead and sobbed.

"We're going to lose the house."

When I asked if her husband would see me, she said she would ask him. "He probably won't come."

You are not logged in. Full article & information available to those who support the ministry through membership.
Please: Log in or Join Now

Fixing Our Eyes on Jesus – Not the Logs!Premium Content

Sometimes I fail to take time to just stop and be still with the Lord, meditating on just what it means that, "I was sanctified, I was justified in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ and by the Spirit of our God."

Do you not know that the wicked will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived: Neither the sexually immoral nor idolaters nor adulterers nor male prostitutes nor homosexual offenders nor thieves nor the greedy nor drunkards nor slanderers nor swindlers will inherit the kingdom of God. And that is what some of you were. But you were washed, you were sanctified, you were justified in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ and by the Spirit of our God.1 Corinthians 6:1-11 NIV


It is truly amazing to know that Almighty, holy God set me apart for Himself, which is what it means to be sanctified. I am holy – set apart – separated from those who do not know Him; set apart from those who have not been washed clean in and by the shed blood of Jesus.

Why have I been set apart? Not because of anything that I have done or could ever do, but because of the finished work of Jesus on Calvary's cross. When Jesus gave His very life up for me, He had faith that His sacrifice of Himself would pay the price, the penalty, for my sins – past, present, and future! And because someone told me about His amazing atoning sacrifice for me and I believed in this Good News through the God-given gift of faith, I have been justified: I have had my sins washed away by the blood of Jesus! For to be justified means that it is the same as if I had never sinned. To be justified means that I am just, no longer guilty of the wrongs that I have committed; I am innocent before the throne of God! In His eyes, it is as if I had never sinned!

Praise be to God in Christ Jesus our Lord! My Abba! Father loved me so much that He allowed His only Son to suffer an excruciating death for me, for you, for all of humanity, that we might believe and be washed clean in His blood and saved from the eternal death that is the penalty of our sin! And when I accept Jesus' gift of perfect atonement for me by faith, I am granted eternal life, a life that is meant to be lived with abundant love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and, self-control. I cannot help but think of Psalm 27:1:

You are not logged in. Full article & information available to those who support the ministry through membership.
Please: Log in or Join Now

God IS our Spiritual Counsel and Protector (Part 1)Premium Content

If our marriage is in trouble the first place we should go is to the Words of Our Loving Father. We should seek Him with our heart and with our minds and with our soul. We should do NOTHING else, nor say NOTHING else without first asking our Father what it is we should do.

Jesus answered and said unto him, If a man loves me, he will keep my words: and my father will love him, and will come unto him, and make our abode with him. He that loveth me and not keepeth my sayings: and the word which ye hear is not mine, but the Father which sent me. John 14: 23-24

Starting today, I will go to my Creator for the spiritual guidance and counsel that my marriage really needs! What did Jesus Christ say about marriage again? Let's take a look at some very important principles for loving one another "in the LORD".

You are not logged in. Full article & information available to those who support the ministry through membership.
Please: Log in or Join Now

You May Not Hate But.... Do You Love?

John 8:12 NRSV
Again Jesus spoke to them, saying, "I am the light of the world. Whoever follows me will never walk in darkness but will have the light of life."

I am by nature probably more like a chicken than any other animal on the planet. I like to wake up with the sun and go to sleep with the sun. In the winter, I like to sleep for long periods of time in the darkness and in the summer, I am up with the light and energetic until the darkness comes. For me, all this is is a quirk of physiology or training or something. It makes it difficult for me to entertain others long into the night because I begin to drop off after nine, but other than that, it is simply a personal eccentricity. We all have them.

Your membership & donations make this ministry possible.
If you have been helped please:

Join Us  or  Donate

Contact Us

Syndicate content