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Steadfastness, Tethered To Him – 2 Thessalonians 3:5

Lord, direct my heart, tether it to yours. Plant deeply rooted love for your people. Those the world may have cast off, marginalized, or forgotten about. Never let my love for them wain because this is how they will know you. For this reason, I am here: to spread your love. A love so desperately needed. And when I become weary, remind me that I once was that drifting lost soul and anchor my steadfastness in you.

Direct my heart to you, Lord, directions for Christians, steadfast, love for his people

In Him,

Esther Dorotik

 

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Shame And Guilt – Allowing The Past To Refine Us But Not Define Us

Today’s Reading: John 4:28-29

We live in a world where we are called by our mistakes, named by our misfortune, and described by our brokenness. Like the woman at the well, many women struggle with these deep wells of shame and rejection. The dust of shameful decisions and dirt of the past gather in our hearts smudging the view of our future. We assume doubts, elevate fear, and discount His ability to use us, which entangles us a ceaseless cycle of shame.

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What if this year were different? What if, like her, we committed to leaving our water jars of the past at His feet where they belong? You see, the rear view mirror of your life will show you where you’ve been, but it can never show you where you’re going. Only He can make your paths straight, smooth out those rough places, and guide you along unfamiliar trails. But, we have to be willing to release the seeds of shame and regret for Him to turn them into a beautiful blooming field of purpose.

Perhaps some of your conversations sound a lot like hers. “You, Jesus, are God and I am a sinful person. How can you ask me for …? Use me for… ? If they knew what I’ve done …” The truth is, He does know all your past, all you’ve done, and the things others have done to you. So many times, the very things we try so hard to bury alive are the actual avenues God chooses to use to minister to others and to bring about His glory. “Are you greater than our father Jacob?” she asked. He is greater than your history, bigger than your past, and has already redeemed your story.

So glance – don’t gaze – because your testimony of God’s redemption has the power to save. But, like this redeemed woman, you have to be willing to leave your water jar behind and go. Allow your past to refine you, but don’t give it authority to define you.

Challenge: Ask the Lord to reveal any “water jars” you need to surrender at His feet.

Blessing friend,

Esther

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When Your World Is Falling Apart

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Death. Divorce. Disease.

Devastating words individually and yet these three words plagued three of my closest family members. In a mere four-month period, my entire world went from great to grave. My once pleasant days became excruciating to bear. Whirling emotions became my daily companion.  Fear of “what’s next” rattled my mind. Sweet memories were replaced with thoughts of birthdays without candles, holidays with empty chairs, and doctor visits with unknown outcomes.

Unable to pray. Powerless to praise. Paralyzed by pain.

I had truly become like a broken vessel.  Psalm 31:12

Shattered. Unusable. Broken beyond repair. So often, in times of struggle and pain, we try to conceal our jagged edges. We plaster on fake smiles, succumb to the call of busyness, and declare “LIFE IS GREAT”.

During this dark time, no smile could surface. No amount of concealer would cover the tear-laden black bags that had taken up residency under my eyes. I didn’t have the energy to answer the call for busyness much less declare “life is great”.  No, life was quite painful.

As I sat there in my closet, consumed with grief, the Lord so gently whispered, “My child, you are not broken beyond repair.  I see your pain, I hear your cries.  I hold every shattered piece of your life in my hand and know where each fragile piece belongs.”

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Right then, I fully understood what Job meant by My ears had heard of you but now my eyes have seen you.”  In that moment, collapsed on the floor, my but now moment came.  I had seen the Father’s heart and knew Him as my Comforter.  My Healer.  Repairing my broken heart and binding up my wounds. (Psalm 147:3)

The Japanese call this art of repairing broken vessels, Kintsugi. The cracks of brokenness are mended with precious gold but not concealed. Made whole but not covered. Filled with gold, these vessels become more valuable than ever before. The cracks become stronger, shine brighter. They can be filled with the purpose for which they were created and displayed for glory.

Only our Healer has perfected this art. His hands of love gently mend the cracks with comfort more precious than gold. Made whole, He takes our brokenness and transforms it into the most valuable part of our story. Then, and only then, can we be filled with the purpose for which we were made and sent out to display His glory.

He sees your pain. Even the pain you’ve tried to hide from the world.
He hears your cries when no one is around.
He alone holds every piece of your life in His hand and knows exactly where they go.

Father, I pray for the person reading this. I don’t know what they are facing but you do. May your gentle hands put the broken pieces of their lives back together again. Fill them with your presence and send them out for your glorious display. We thank you for you make everything beautiful in it’s time. Ecclesiastes 3:11

Blessing Chosen & Cherished One…

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He drew me out of deep waters

Whatever waters you are treading, He will draw you out. No matter how deep they are, He will part the heavens, bend down from on high and take hold of you.

I know His gentle drawing hand because, in the darkest, deepest waters of my life, when the pressure was closing in and I couldn’t see the bottom, He drew me out.  Though my circumstances didn’t always change, His faithful presence overshadowed them.

Comfort crushed the paralyzing pain, trust trampled the fear of forgotten, and strength stepped in. 

It doesn’t matter how vast the sea of trouble you find yourself in, He is there.  Your flesh and your heart may fail, but God is your strength and portion forever.  Psalm 73:26.  Nothing in all creation can keep the Father from you. From His throne, He hears your voice.  Your cries come before Him, penetrating His ear (Psalm 18:6).  He will part the heavens and come down (18:9).  He will reach down from on high and take hold of you; He will draw you out of deep waters (18:16).

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CROWNED WITH GLORY AND HONOR

He painted the heavens with His fingers and set the moon and stars in place and yet, He is mindful of us.  

His utmost concern is you.

The same fingers that filled the sky with jewels, crowned you with glory and honor.  

He made you royal; adorned you with jewels of importance, magnificence, value, and greatness.

Don’t ever doubt your worth, your significance.  You bear the signet stamp of the King’s approval!

You made him a little lower than the heavenly beings and crowned him with glory and honor. Psalm 8:5

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