there someone you can’t forgive? Someone who hurt you deeply? All that
pain burns up our joy, leaving piles of ash in a fireplace that’s never
been cleaned out. Soon the ashes are so deep we can’t start a fire for
all the build up. The flames of a passionate, purpose-filled spirit are
smothered with unforgiveness and anger. We lose track of our calling
because we’re busy chasing the smoke of emotion. As writers, we have
the awesome opportunity to journal it out or add it to our stories. But
sometimes the best way is action. The action of physically envisioning
the process. The action of groaning and allowing the Holy Spirit to
pray when we don’t know what to pray.
This is a private activity. Sit,
kneel, or lie on the floor.
Concentrate on the depth of pain
you are feeling. See all the dead ashes and junk from being the one
left to fight all the fires. The one left to do all the work, pay all
the bills, or care when no one else would.
Allow the tears to come. Allow
yourself to groan out loud. In those groans (don’t stop, keep groaning)
see the Holy Spirit swirling through your body, stirring up the fallen
ashes of hope and pain. He’s scooping up dead embers, cold powdered
wishes at the bottom of a rusty iron stove.
See the Spirit swirl all those groaning prayers like smoke around a
winter cabin. Now the flue is open, and the smoke is racing to the
throne room, carrying useless ash.
Now picture the stunning glory
of the throne room.
Suddenly, what was once dead is
now flaring to life. The embers, warmed by contact with the Holy
Spirit, burst into dancing flames in the majestic throne room.
See the Holy Spirit lean and
meld into the one true God. His eyes turn and focus on you. They pierce
your soul. He nods in understanding. He knows how you feel, what you
are asking, and what to do about it.
Are you willing to let go of
your pain and let God take it from here?
Hold your hands up to Him. Open
your palms and blow your worries, fears, and pain away. Toss God the
blackened pieces of wooden unforgiveness.
Watch Him catch it all. Watch a
slow smile spread across His features. Hear Him say, “I can take it
from here. It is in my power. It is in my plan. I love you.”
Did you know?
God is smiling on you!
Excerpt from Gems of Wisdom: For
a Treasure-filled Life. Available online, or from any bookstore, and is
a great small group resource too. Angie is available to lead women’s
retreats, speak at events, or even Skype to your book club. Visit
Avocado Summer Salad †I +GF *W
A light and lovely beginning to
summer with 30 minutes to an elegant table.
48 Precooked, shelled shrimp
4 eggs, hardboiled and peeled
Feta cheese, I prefer fat-free
Olives for garnish, Greek style or Kalamata
2 avocadoes, cut in half, scooped, sliced into bite-sized pieces
4 tomatoes, sliced lengthwise
Light salad dressing; try light ranch or a balsamic spray-on dressing
Garnish with store bought low fat bacon bits.
Optional: Add in sugar
snap peas, cold cooked beets, and baby spinach.
Boil eggs 10 minutes. Turn off
burner. Let sit in boiling water 10 minutes and then rinse in cold
water. Thaw shrimp in a colander under cold running water. While shrimp
is thawing, peel the hardboiled eggs. Chop eggs, set aside. (It’s a
prettier dish if the eggs are in larger pieces.) Layer 4 plates with
equal portions of avocadoes, tomatoes, chopped eggs, and olives. Now
spread 12 shrimp per plate across salad. Sprinkle on feta cheese and
then bacon bits. Serve with ranch or balsamic dressing.
†I +GF *W (IBD, Gluten-free,