Why Can’t I Achieve Mental, & Physical Health?

062620 5It happened last week, last year, or even longer ago, but the memory of the hurt and pain can still rise to the surface so fast.  A word, a name, a song, a phrase can trigger the instance to come back.  You feel those emotions…again.  You say you have forgiven the offender, you even tell yourself you have moved on, so then why does it still rise up and bite you, and at times with the same emotions you experienced when it first happened?

There are many types of hurt others can do to you, but the one thing I struggle with the most is injustice.  It seems so unfair when you are falsely accused.  Jesus had to suffer through this.  He was accused of things untrue, yet he remained silent.  Those accusations were so strong I think some who knew him well started changing what they thought of him.

As difficult as it may be to not defend yourself, but inside let the truth stand, we must follow Jesus’ example.  Hanging on to all of the hurt and pain affects us mentally and I believe also physically.  And, for those asking God to heal them of a physical ailment, hanging on to the hurts of any kind could be blocking your healing, or the renewing of your mind.  The song, “Lay it All Down”, by Will Reagan, can point us to the first step in removing the pain, for good.  Here are a few of the lyrics below:

When we’ve given up, on better days
There are memories, we can’t erase
Lay it all down … lay it all down

We’ve come to fear, what we can’t explain
There’s nothing here, that can ease the pain
Lay it all down … lay it all down
At the feet of Jesus … at the feet of Jesus

After we lay it all down at the feet of Jesus I assure you, there will be temptation to pick it back up.  Don’t!  Turn around, walk away, and never mention it again to anyone, unless the incident can be used for God’s glory in the teaching and exhortation of others.  Jesus is more than capable, and qualified to handle your hurt and pain.  Give it to him, and see how much better you begin to feel after you do.

Pour out all your worries and stress upon him and leave them there, for he always tenderly cares for you.” 1 Pt. 5:7 (TPT)

Copyright © 2020 Mark Brady.  All rights reserved.

Establish the Mood

062320What happens when you walk into a room of people?  Are they glad to see you, or do they cringe?  Do they come up to you and greet you, or do they pretend to be busy, and walk away hoping to avoid you?  I had a boss that every morning when I saw her enter our department, I knew my peace was about to leave.

What kind of mood encompasses us, goes with us and enters, when we do?  Does your very presence change the environment, the atmosphere of a place?  It should.

Back when I worked in an office building, in Chicago, I took on the challenge of trying my best to put a smile on my fellow passenger’s faces while we were in the elevator.  Difficult, because some of them got off on the lower floors, giving me only seconds to come up with something to do or say that would change them.  That would leave them better when they got off the elevator than when they got on.  Pun intended, my words could lift them up, or let them down.

Once there were several people entering the elevator.  I said, “Call out the floor you need.”  They did, then I announced, “I like pushing people’s buttons.”  I wonder if that was some’s only laugh for the whole day?

As the years went by, people would get on the elevator, see me, and smile immediately.  I’m not boasting, because I knew two things:

  1. The love and joy in my life, I shared with others, only came from God.

  2. I entered the elevator on purpose, with a purpose.

For those who have accepted God, have his love, his truth, and his life inside, we can change, or flip the environment of a home, office, church, store, or wherever we go, just by walking in.  Oh, how the world needs us to enter their lives and shatter the darkness they dwell in with the light of God!  “Let there be light!”  Offer them the hope of Jesus.  When we welcome the presence of God in our lives He goes with us.  People sense it, and are either drawn to it, or openly resist it.

No matter where your feet take you, take God.

Be there on purpose, with a purpose.  Be mindful of those around you.  Roger, a good friend of mine, does this every day when he goes to work.  Share hope, peace, faith and love.  Scatter lots of joy.  Show everyone there is a better way to live.  Make them curious how you can still be smiling despite all that is going on around us.  Establish the mood!

Copyright © 2020 Mark Brady.  All rights reserved.

Who is it For?

061920Oswald Chambers wrote, “It is much easier to die than to lay down your life day in and day out with the sense of the high calling of God.”  Truth, if ever spoken.  Yet, Jesus, the Son of God did both.  He always stated he only did what he saw his Father do.  That meant, every day!  Then, at the end, he laid his life down for us as well.  He did it for you, and me.

You know, I can’t recall any other so called spiritualist that was killed, or they laid down their life voluntarily for what they believed, taught, or lived.

Surrendering your free will is hard to do, yet if done for God, it brings satisfaction, true life.  So I have to ask, “Are you laying down your life?  If so, for whom?”

Copyright © 2020 Mark Brady.  All rights reserved.

What Day is This?

061220I notice patterns.  I also see common denominators.  I can’t help it.  It’s the way I am made.  I think I could have that disorder: Denoterns.  Anyway, perhaps many others have it as well, but I have noticed several times in the Bible where it took three days to change someone, or something.

Take Jonah.  God gave him direct instructions to go to Nineveh and share whatever message God told him to.  I think Jonah took it upon himself to judge the people there, and he boarded a ship going the opposite direction.  Perhaps his heart was full of hurt he associated with the people there and he wanted God to wipe them off the map.  You can read the whole story for yourself in the book of Jonah in the Bible, but after he was thrown overboard and spending three days in the stomach of a great fish, his heart changed.

Three days!

There are many other instances whether they journeyed, stayed or not ate for three days.  Three days can seem like eternity when you are hungry, thirsty, hurting, or desperate for an answer from God.

Jesus in the tomb is probably the most famous story of a three day ordeal in the Bible, but after his third day, anyone in the world can have their wrong doing forgiven, just by accepting Jesus.

On a personal note, three days after my wife gave up on hoping, asking, and believing God to send her a husband I sent her a message.  On the fourth day, her life changed.  It seems as if it takes three days to work out the flesh.  In other words, it takes that long to realize that when your situation changes it wasn’t you, but had to be God.

I don’t like going through a three day ordeal, but I hang on, because I love the fourth day.

If you are going through something, and you have turned it over to God, realizing you can’t do anything about it otherwise, then know this; your forth day is coming!

CONFESSION:  I made up the disorder Denoterns.

Copyright © 2020 Mark Brady.  All rights reserved.

Good, But Best

good, better and best word written by 3d hand“The greatest enemy of the life of faith in God is not sin, but good choices which are not quite good enough.” (Oswald Chambers – My Utmost for His Highest – May 25)

Confused?  Let me explain.

We can be confident, “For God did not give us a spirit of timidity or cowardice or fear, but [He has given us a spirit] of power and of love and of sound judgment and personal discipline [abilities that result in a calm, well-balanced mind and self-control]”. 2 Tim. 1:7 (AMP)

Therefore, with our free will, we should be able to make good, sound, decisions for our own lives.  I felt like I had done that.  I retired from AT&T, at the age of 55, and instead of buying an RV and traveling, I decided to move back to my home town to take care of my father, to write, and occasionally speak publically.  I was happy with these good, sound decisions.

Not my will, but thine be done.

Life was, and would have remained good, but I always yield my choices and decisions to God.  Before my father passed, not long after I had moved back, we had some great moments fishing again.  (Not to tell a fish story, but we managed to “keep” 167 fish in only 3 outings.)  I bought a house I really enjoyed living in.  I was getting used to my new, good life, but God wanted “his best life for me”.  (Kind of sounds like something Joel Osteen would say.)

You see, I had been divorced for 24 years.  I kind of wanted to be married again, but was content being single.  Looking back, I see all the people God had put in front of me to work on my heart toward marriage.  One Friday I found myself filling out a profile on a dating website.  I submitted it and there she was.  From all of the women presented, the one, who would later become my wife, stood out.  I could see the love of God radiating from her postage stamp size photo.

To make a long story short, I contacted her, we texted, then talked, and then video chatted via Messenger.  I went to the Philippines to visit her and the family.  One month after returning home from the trip, I put everything in storage, rented my house out, and moved there to marry her.  It has not been a “cake walk”, but we always had love to build on.

While waiting for her immigration process to be completed, we have grown together, and lately started dreaming about our future.  There are several things beginning to open up, and reveal to us the will of God, for us, as a couple.  I love it!

You see, I could have continued to be single and have a good life, but because I surrendered my will to God, I am now living the best life I could ever have.  I thank God for loving me so much.  And ya know what?  He loves you too, just as much!

Copyright © 2020 Mark Brady.  All rights reserved.

I Was a Pig!

050520A pig is very selfish.  Also, it will kick and scream to live until the very last drop of blood drips out of its body.  Pigs will do anything it takes to survive, and to get theirs.  Sound like anyone you know?

Okay, I would like to say I haven’t been that bad, but still, I too was a pig, until, God started converting me, patiently, and lovingly, to be a lamb.

Arthur Katz, in his book, “Reality: The Hope of Glory” writes about the difference in a lamb and a pig.  A lamb is quiet while it gives up its life, but a pig, will squeal and fight to the very end and will not choose, of its own will, to lay down its life for any reason, especially, for the benefit of another.

Art wrote about the experience he was given to take the life of a pig they were planning to roast.  After giving it some thought, he thought it was better to hand the knife to one who knew how to use it with surgical precision.

I don’t want to be a pig.  I don’t want to live the kind of life that would be considered selfish, dirty, self seeking just so my needs can be met.  I want to be a lamb.  In order to become a lamb, I must exercise my free will, and hand God the knife.  I must ask him to cut away, until everything inside of me that resembles a pig, will be removed.  Ouch!

What is my motivation for this desire?  Being a follower of Jesus Christ, and knowing the Bible talks about Jesus being a lamb.

John 1:36 (NET Bible)

Gazing at Jesus as he walked by, he said, “Look, the Lamb of God!”

Isaiah 53:7 (NET Bible)

He was treated harshly and afflicted,
but he did not even open his mouth.
Like a lamb led to the slaughtering block,
like a sheep silent before her shearers,
he did not even open his mouth.

The scripture in Isaiah was prophesying about Jesus.  Like Jesus did, I too desire to quietly give my life to God, for whatever purpose he has for me.  I don’t want to do it reluctantly, but with gladness in my heart.  Knowing that any personal suffering is only for a moment, but the effects will last forever.

Copyright © 2020 Mark Brady.  All rights reserved.

Knowing the Way

040420When I was four years old I was able to show people how to get from our house to JCPenny.  I didn’t know the street names, but I knew when to get off the highway, and when to turn and which way.  This may be more important; I knew how to get back home.

Funny story; when I was five, we had been to JCPenny and other stores at the outdoor mall, it was the mid-sixties okay, and I had seen at least four different “Santa Clauses”.  Something just didn’t add up.  Then it hit me, and while we were on our way home, I blurted out the truth of how the whole thing worked.  My mother almost wrecked the 1963 Chevy Impala trying to reach over the back of the front seat and slap my legs, or whatever she should make contact with and screaming at me, “Shut up!”  My older sister started crying and whimpering, “It’s not true!  It can’t be true!”

A couple of years ago, I was working security at my church, when a middle age couple approached me and asked for money.  They said they had been in town to visit his sister who was in the hospital.  They shared they had intended to drive into town, visit, and drive back home.  Instead, they said they got lost and turned around several times.  So much so, their gas tank was almost empty.

I felt bad for them, and I didn’t give them cash, so I walked across the street and filled up their car.  While the man she was living with, it was an impression, went in to the store to do something, I had the opportunity to speak to the woman sitting in the car.

After meeting them I kept getting a feeling, or was hearing from God, that she used to go to church, but because of some bad choices in life had gotten away from the faith of her youth.  I squatted down so I could look at her in the face through the driver’s window and said, “I feel like God wants me to give you a message.  He wants you to know he misses you.”  She started crying.  I said, “I feel like you used to go to church when you were a little girl.”  She, now wiping tears, mentioned, “My grandma used to take us kids every Sunday.”  I encouraged her to, no matter what, with or without him, to go back to church again.  I told her I was sure God wouldn’t hold it against her that she had been MIA for so long, because he just wanted to see her come home.  Hang out, talk, and get caught up.

Before writing this blog tonight, I got the impression there is one, or perhaps many people who need to go home again.  Not just to a “church building”, but to a place where you can learn the true nature of God.  How much he loves you.  I think the message God had for her is similar to the message he wants you to hear.  If you don’t know how to find your way home, ask Him to help you.  He will.  He knows the way.

Copyright © 2020 Mark Brady.  All rights reserved.

What the Corona is Going On?

Charlie 0320 105There is so much going on in our world right now.  I’ve thought about taking pain pills before sitting down and watching the evening news.  There is so much devastation, sickness, hate, and crime.  It’s no wonder people live in fear.  People fear the most what they don’t know.  Mainly, they don’t know what is going to happen in the future.

What’s going to happen to my 401?  Funny in a way, most people in the world don’t even know what one is much less have one.  They’re more concerned about catching the Coronavirus.  If they don’t contract the virus will it affect their job?  The world has for certain become a smaller planet. We are more connected to people in China, South Africa, India, and Europe than ever before.

Then there are problems here at home like politicians not getting along and acting like they are in kindergarten all over again.  Wildfires out of control, severe storms that cause flooding, mudslides, and total devastation from wind damage.

You might be saying, “Thanks Captain Obvious!  We know!”

What this world needs is climate change!  You might be thinking, “We have that too!”

Just a thought: how do we know what the temperature was before the floods of Noah’s days?  I’m saying, what if the earth’s temperature is just now getting back to what it was before all that water covered the earth?  A lot of the water froze because the ground was covered.  Anyway, back to our regular scheduled program already in progress.

The kind of climate change I am writing about is in our in countries, our states or provinces, in our cities, on our street, in our home, in us.  You see, a lot of people want things to change.  The very people who live in fear, but they either don’t know how, or what to do.

Believing in God is not just a cliché,

but the start of laying a solid foundation upon which to build your life.  Accepting Jesus, as God’s son, and asking for the forgiveness of all your wrong doing gets you access to all that God offers his children.  Protection, guidance, direction as well as a host of other things, the walls, we need as mankind.  Then asking for the Holy Spirit to dwell within us is the roof.  Our structure is complete.  The Holy Spirit not only brings peace, but power to stand firm anytime, and power to do things for God.

Real life, built and lived out on Godly principles, changes everything.  For one, there is perfect peace in God, and perfect peace cast out fear.  it changes not just us, but our street, our cities, our states, our countries, our world.  Things in our world aren’t going to change for the positive until we, those who know God and act like it, do.  Then, as God, through his Holy Spirit leads us, we can change the climate of our world.  I’m in!  Are you?

Copyright © 2020 Mark Brady.  All rights reserved.

Prison Didn’t Change Him

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAI was saddened the other night, as I watched a news report, of a man whose prison sentence had been commuted.  Not so much because he was out early, but when he spoke to the reporters it seemed as if he had not changed at all.  He still came across arrogant, and defiant, as if he did nothing wrong.  He felt he was unjustly charged, but was found guilty and put behind bars.  Prison didn’t change him.

From the Bible, when Joseph the Dreamer, came out of prison he was a changed man.  I believe a wiser version of himself, but one who, though had been humbled, still believed the dream God had given him many years earlier.  Prison changed him.

When the Apostle Paul was in prison, in Acts chapter 16, he didn’t let prison change him either.  At the midnight hour, he and Silas began singing, yes worshipping while their beaten bodies hung on a cold, damp dungeon wall, when so many others would have complained.  “God, look at what I got for obeying you.  Do you see the pain I am in?”  Dan Betzer tells this story better than anyone I have ever heard.  Dan believes when the voices of those two men rose to heaven and God heard their praises He turned to his Son, and said, “What this song needs is a lot of percussion.”

It was then, in their darkest hour, an earthquake took place, and the men found themselves freed from the chains that held them tight, and the door to their cell flung open.  The guard knew if the prisoners escaped it would mean the end to his life, so he drew his own sword to take it, but Paul stopped him, by saying, “We are all still here.”  The guard was so moved he invited Paul and Silas to his house for dinner where his whole family accepted Jesus.  Paul was not changed by prison, but Paul changed prison!

What prison are you in at the current time?  Is there something holding you back?  A person or situation that is keeping you from being the person God sees you being?  You don’t have to let your circumstances change you, but with God’s power, you can change your circumstances.  You can be freed from your situation.  Your sentence can be commuted.  Ask God for what you need to move out of prison, and to move on with your life, your dream.  He loves you, sees you, and cares for you so much.  Live life free.

Copyright © 2020 Mark Brady.  All rights reserved.

If I Fail

Charlie 022920“If it’s too good to be true, it usually is.”  Something a few people forget before they get taken financially.  In other words, there aren’t many good deals or 100% guarantees in life.  So when I saw the picture with this blog post, which is a sticker that was on the side of a product, I laughed.

As I was laughing, my thoughts turned to God.  What if God came with this sticker?

I heard a testimony tonight where a prophet shared God’s love with a dictator.  The prophet told the dictator the code name of a top secret mission, and he also told him something that happened on his daughter’s birthday the dictator felt very bad about.  The dictator replied, “Those things are guarded secrets.  How did you know?”  The prophet said, “God told me.”  The dictator was so moved he accepted God and tried to give the prophet a bag of money.  The prophet laughed, but said, “The only cost to God’s love was paid for by his Son, Jesus when he died on a cross for our sins.”

So if there is no cost to accepting God then there would be no money back if you one was not satisfied.  Could that be why some don’t accept him, his love, his Son?  They want a written guarantee before they believe?  If they read the Bible they will get their written guarantee.

God will never fail.  1 Corinthians 13:8 tells us that love never fails, and 1 John 4:8 tells us that God is love.  If one gets to know God, his true nature, they would walk with him 100% satisfied.

Copyright © 2020 Mark Brady.  All rights reserved.