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God is not unfair, or unjust….He is not a “mean dad” either!

mean dad It breaks my heart when I find people have had the wrong picture painted for them, about God and who he really is. I know too, that it upset Jesus too, which is why he was so very hard on the Pharisees, and even on his disciples at times. HE CAME to make sure God was not misrepresented. That was part of why he came down here to earth, and had those 12 people follow him around. He made a way to reconcile us to God our Father, because it was not his will, nor his intent, for everyone to be seperated from God due to Adam and Eve’s sin of turning their ears away from him. 

When I was about 10, I was with some friends playing in the yard, and this one kid went and played with the charcoal in the BBQ grill. I remember the mom noticed it had been messed with, and tried to get us to admit “who did it.” I wouldn’t tell on him, and neither would his sisters, and he would not confess. She made us all bend over, and smacked us all with a wooden spoon. Not only did it hurt, it was humiliating, as well. I remember being very upset with her, and thinking how unfair that was. For years, I didn’t think the same about this woman, after this,  nor trust her judgement, because of her decision to punish us all. 

In a church setting, we are often not treated as individuals. We all get the same message, and those who are sitting there are often scolded, or even given a message that may only apply to one person in that group. There are times when ministers have dealt with hard or almost impossible issues with others, and wind up dishing out a type of “wooden spoon” sermon, which makes those who are trying to be good and follow God feel very discouraged. God did not intend for us to be without his guidance in our own (Personal) lives.

When Jesus said the Holy Spirit would teach them (John 14:26) He meant “individually, to you.”

What kind of Father would give a child with music abilities more football training? Wouldn’t a good Father notice and cultivate the gifts he put within his own child? Of course he would! God knows what you are good at, and whaf you are not good at. He knows what he wants to cultivate in you, and he’s not out to treat you like some soldier in an army, marching off to war. Tell me where Jesus gathered up a big army to go conquer the city and rid of of sin? Tell me how he made all the disciples be exactly alike, and march in unison to go reach the world for his causes? 

For the most part, Jesus dealt with people one on one, and so did his disciples. He cultivated and shaped Peter, James, John, and the others, into who he wanted them to be. He did not get on Mary’s case for not helping Martha with dinner, and he didn’t tell Peter he needed to be just like John. In fact, every disciple in the bible had their own unique style (and ministry). This is why the belief the Holy Spirit will teach you is so very important!

I have the bible on my side, because Jesus said to them, (and therefore, to us also), And He (the Holy Spirit) will cause you to recall (will remind you of, bring to your remembrance) everything I have told you”.… John 14:26 

God does not “spank everyone” when one person is naughty, He doesn’t insist we all be exactly alike, and he is not into ministry that produce “Cookie Cutter” Christians. Before you mention the Old Testament to me, remember this; Noah, Abraham, Hannah, (and many others) had a different outcome, all because they seperated themselves unto him. And you can do the same. 

We need to find out what we are. (Pastor, Prophet, Apostle, Prayer warrior, helps, worker of miracles, Evangelist, teacher, and so on……..). Ask Him! He’s listening! 

Laura Grace, Author,

Grace to the Rescue, Grace to Grow, and Dysfunctional People 

https://www.amazon.com/Dysfunctional-People-Laura-Grace/dp/1722365706/ref=sr_1_fkmrnull_1?keywords=dysfunctional+people+by+laura+grace&qid=1550767699&s=gateway&sr=8-1-fkmrnull

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Could your relationship issue be over Fret? A candid little story about me….

fear and worry

I had a lot on my mind, the other day. My Mom broke her hip, the weather was terrible, and I didn’t know how we could even go see her. She broke her other hip last year, and hadn’t even recovered from that yet! Here we’ve been praying for her to fully recover when “Wham,” another bad suprise happens. 

We live in a rural area where it’s bitter could outside, and it’s been snowing like crazy. My husband had back pain, my road was unplowed and I could not get out to help Mom’s husband, and the list of “Things to be afraid about,” just kept piling up. 

Like a good Christian Girl, I put it all in God’s hands. I prayed and made my petitions known, got centered in peace, and went about my business. 

Later that day, I decided to make a pot of soup for my husband, a type of soup he’d requested, not too long ago. My reason for this was to do the only thing I could do to make someone’s life a little better that day. 

I”m a woman of Faith, so I did not believe for a minute, I was fretting. Had you told me I was, I would have said, “No, actually, I’m not.” 

Deep down however, I must have been fretting, and I know this, because I lashed out at my husband when he didn’t compliment me on the soup. Was it because I was greedy for compliments? No! The sad thing is, he lashed back at me, and why?

Because he was fretting as well. We did not need hours of counselling to find out why we squabbled, all we needed was a bit of understanding as to what was happening. And the big problem was……………….

                                                  We were both Fretting! 

God made me aware that fretting was the awful culprit behind me lashing out at him, (for not saying the soup was good), and that he was fretting about whether he could finish his tasks with the pain he was having, and more snow on the horizon. 

The truth is, just a bit of fretting can lead to hostility, and barking at the ones we love, for almost no apparent reason, at all. How do we stop it? By being honest with ourselves, that’s how! “I”m concerned and a little worried because”_____(fill in the blank), is a humble approach that will lead to Grace from God, in our hour of need. 

I wonder how many people we meet in life who are cranky, crabby, lash out at us, act rude toward us, or even just drive badly at times, are fretting over something, and possibly even lashing out as a result? 

Words like, “I’m sorry, I had a lot on my mind, I didn’t mean to lash out at you,” are good and healing words to say, (once we realize what has happened.) 

fearFretting leads to worry, and can even lead us into fear, and then anger, (and eventual harm to relationships.) It’s so simple, yet true! 

Sometimes a good solution is to admit it, have a good laugh about it, and then quit! 

                                 With Love and hopes for your good (fret-free) day.

-Laura Grace

 Cease from anger, and forsake wrath; Do not fret—it only causes harm.”

                                                                     Psalm 37:8

Christ-like and growing · Dysfunctional people · God and his discipline · Grace to Grow by Laura Grace · Growing up in God by Laura Grace · Leadership and church leadership · Let's grow up in God · Uncategorized · what is discipline for?

Leadership is…………

Leadership is

Speaking of Growing……….

I got asked to lead the entire music program over 2 years ago, for our local school. They had no music teacher, so I was elected. I dropped to my knees in prayer, felt like I was facing a giant. “How do I do this Lord?” I inquired of him. is this you? (I said) and can I do this? He assured me i could. I was so scared! Truly, the word petrified comes to mind.

I am not the born-leader type, not a type A personality, nada. But I have read the words, “Let the weak say I am strong.” I know God qualifies the unqualified. 

I’ll never forget that first day, kids came piling into my room, and there I was, “the teacher.” I had some experience with leading worship but, that’s about it. As their music teacher, their entire success seemed to depend on me. It was scary!

The high school kids told me they “were really bad singers” and they’d been embarrassed at some event they’d had the prior year.  When I asked them what they knew they said “Not much, we’re pretty bad.” 

It was at that moment, the desire formed in me to Help them succeed! The need in front of me seemed to bring out “the gifts within me.”

I sure did pray for their success (and mine). In My heart, I know God guided me to help them succeed, and part of it involved discipline.

They didn’t like the discipline, my insistence they pay attention, not let them just skate by (and treat music class like an easy A). I made them sing the songs over and over and over again. “I think we got it now,” they would say, and I would say “You’re going to do it again’. I had them do stuff that seemed silly or even beneath them, (at the time) but soon they were singing togehter like champions. 

Needless to say, they had a successful concert (2 of them) everyone loved it, and I know they felt proud of themselves when it was all over.

Just like young David and his 5 stones, God unfolded to me a plan for each group of children (K-12). It was amazing! Had I not stepped into the water with courage, I never would have witnessed what God can do, (through me.). It was incredible! 

Nobody likes discipline (at the time) we all want that easy walk from point A to point B but……..Hang in there! Discipline helps us become all we were meant to be. It’s a part of growing, (and a very necessary ingredient).

DENTON CONCERT #4 the grinch Dylan.jpg
Me with the Kids 2016

-Laura Grace, author, Grace to Grow 

Hebrews 12:11 “No discipline seems pleasant at the time, but painful. Later on, however, it produces a harvest of righteousness and peace for those who have been trained by it.” #discipline #Goddisciplines#disciplinetodisciple

 

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How I describe “Religious’ by Laura Grace

A lot of people want to know, when they hear “they are religious,” what that means, exactly. Certainly we can all do things “religiously” but not necessarily be religious. 

pharisee.jpgWhat does it mean to be “a Pharisee?”. What I call religious, is a person knows a lot about the bible, but they don’t really live it. They like to do the parts that are easy to do, such as tithing, going to church, doing good deeds for others (soup kitchens, and so on), because to them, so long as they have “done’ the right things, then their relationship with God must be okay, as well. 

 Paul was persecuting new believers for not being “right with God,” according to the Word of God. Did you hear what I said? His measure WAS the word of God! And yet Jesus said to him, “Why are you persecuting me?” 

Religious people are more concerned with the outside of the cup (outward appearances) than they are with inside of a person. 

Can we be just a little bit religious? Well, yes, we can! I have seen people be all spiritual one minute and religious, the next. Basically, there are a couple of motivators for being religous. One is Fear, the other is Pride. 

Religious people fear things getting “out of control” If they don’t keep everyone in line. If someone sins (and Paul addressed this in Romans), they fear everyone else will feel it’s okay to sin. Therefore, even though they may claim to believe the gospel (of Jesus Christ) they really do not believe God transforms people supernaturally, or by his Grace. 

People who are religious are often prideful, feeling they have followed the rules, and so should everyone else. To them, this is justice. It’s not just if they have to stop drinking, and you didn’t. “It’s not fair,” if they are going to church all the time, tithing, or serving in the church every day, and you are not doing your part. 

Religious people are the “all about the rules,” people. 

The heart of Jesus is that we know him, and because we know him, he knows us.

There is a penatatrive situation going on in Relationship with Jesus, that is like no other. He is willing to impart everything he knows to you (as much as you can handle), and in turn we surrender all of ourselves to him. 

A religious person will always claim to know what’s going on in the heart of a person, based upon that person’s actions. 

Let me ask you something; “Can you see, with the naked eye, what is going on inside of a plant, when it’s growing?

People who love God bask in his light, receive his word as fertilizer, water, and seed. Sometimes for true believers, the nutrients of God’s word are received through truths in music, movies, and other things that are not carrying the label “Christian.” Didn’t Jesus say he was the way, the truth, and the light? 

Religious people are bigger sinners than the person’s they are pointing fingers at. No wonder Paul said he was a wretched man, and one who did not “deserve” Salvation after his encounter with Jesus.

We hate sin because of love for people (when we are born again) and what it does to them. We don’t hate it because of what we fear it does to us. 

Religion is always orderly, While Relationship is often messy. Religion is man going through the motions, Relationship cries out to God for supernatural help. Religion is into punishment for infractions of God’s word (calling it discipline), while relationship undertands the heart needs to be supernaturally transformed. 

Religion Produces death and call it ‘death to self” When a person realizes their own ways did not work, they voluntarily surrender their lives to Jesus (knowing they have failed to achieve anything good in the flesh) and this is called being “Born Again” and is true death to self. 

There’s a reason Jesus was conceived by the Holy Spirit, and this example, that he was born without the help of a natural man, was so important. It’s the same way we are “born” of God. This is what a true Christian is, not a member of some club or religion that accepts you if you meet their spelled out (human) requirements. 

So now, when I say someone is religious, I mean Jesus is not really real to them. He’s a person they know a lot about, but not someone they know (personally). 

The reason Jesus was so hard on the Pharisees, is he knew their example might prevent people from coming to him…….and he was willing to do anything he could- to stop that from happening.

He loves you, so much! He loved us enough to die for us, stand up to the Pharisees for us, and call people like Paul, Peter and all the rest to “preach” the good news of Salvation to us. 

Lastly, Relationship cheers you on to do good, and follow Jesus! Religion picks apart everything you do, and scrutinizes you, to see if you’re worthy. I hope this helped. 

With love, Your servant, his daughter, and author of several encouraging books …..

Laura Grace 

am I really required to love my abuser? · being battered emotionally · co-dependent · cure or healing for emotional pain · Help I'm a christian trying to love, what do I do? · Help, I"m trying to love an abuser · is there such a thing as loving too much? · Marital abuse · spousal abuse and emotional healing · the love, love love doctrine · Uncategorized · when being a christian is hard · why does love always have to hurt so much?

Mirror Mirror, on the wall, who’s the most loving, of them all?

 
There’s a subject that doesn’t get talked about much, in Christian Circles. It’s called “Pride’ Over how much we love others. If we stay on auto-pilot, only feed on what our church tells us, (unless we have a super healthy church) and do not read the bible for ourselves; chances are we are going to get the Love-Love-Love version of how everything should be.
 
This is fine, (in most cases), unless you happen to be dealing with, or living with a person who is programmed to deceive you, lie to you, con you, and drain the very life out of you, 24-hours a day. Unless you’ve been married to, or with a person who uses the bible against you (as in, every time you confront their lie they say, 
“You are not walking in Love” And, they act as the accuser, if you give them consquences for their actions, and say, “I don’t think you’re being very merciful honey, you may want to check yourself.”MIRROR MIRRORChances are, you may not understand just how treacherous this can be. I”m convinced the love love love doctrine when dealing with Abuse, is much like theories people have when they’ve never had children (yet).
Until you are abused like this, you probably have no reason to press in with God for what he meant by “Love you Enemies.” Loving your enemies may mean leaving them, sending the to Jail, or whatever else God thinks should happen. 
The Fruit of the Spirit (of Love) also contains much truth. God is not co-dependent. He is not into just showing love and mercy to those who chew him up, and spit him out (so to speak.). You would think we would know this, but, it’s not always the case. 
 
Christians are often held to the standard of love, the way WE understand it, not the way God spells it out. I wanted to walk in love so bad (and be one of God’s favorites) that I said long ago “I will always err on the side of loving.” it’s a brave stance, but people who don’t love God, who think you are a fool OR who think it’s your job to pick up the pieces after all their bad choices (time and time again) will not stop being this way, no matter how loving you are.
 
A picture God gave me is this: You would not let a person go into your church building, tear it all up, break the pews, destroy the Altar, and throw mud on the pulpit, time and time again. If you saw someone destroying your church building, you might forgive and forget ONCE if they repented, and promised not to do it again. If they wouldn’t listen to you the first time and were “bent’ On destroying your church building, you would likely call the police, wouldn’t you?
 
Why is it then, that US (the actual temple of the living God) would be considered less important- than a building made of stone or wood? Why do we believe it’s okay to “tear down” A person over and over again, and why would we ever council someone to just “Keep on Loving” in the sense of “Let them do it again?”
Beware of pride over “How well you Love!” I know it’s hard to believe, but it can become something we are “Proud of” (How Much abuse we take).
I hope you ponder my words, because often, “taking abuse’ becomes the only thing abused people feel they are good at. Once Pride sets in, (over how much we love our abuser), we have little hope of listening to someone who says we can be set free. 
 
Ecclesiastes 7:16 Do not be overly righteous, Nor be overly wise: Why should you destroy yourself?
 
“but deliver us from evil……” Luke 11:4 (NKJV) 
Laura Grace, Author,
Grace to the Rescue, Grace to Grow, Grace to Soar, Dsyfunctional People. 
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When Having Faith Hurts (And we don’t get the outcome we desired).

What do we do when having Faith hurts us? I’ve experienced the devestation of not having the outcome I believed I woud have (after believing, with all my heart, for something to happen.) What I see is, God honors my Faith, but my timing isn’t always the same as His. 
I used to stand outside my door every single day (praying in the morning) believing for a bigger house. The house we lived in at the time was so small, it literally felt like you had to “go outside to change your mind.” Prospect House outside 2017.jpg
This house was 643 square feet (total) including the porch area, and when my kids came to visit, we didnt have room for everyone to sit around the table.  
At Christmas time, we sat in a circle, as if we were in a tee-pee, and the coffee table became one of the chairs. It was a small, small, very small house, and we lived in it for several years. During that time, God taught me to be thankful, while having faith at the same time for “something more.” 
     Now, we live in a double wide mobile home, which is a blessed home to us, but probably “lost its’ value” according to the world. However, we love it, and consider it an answer to prayer! We had to adjust our faith to receive this house however, because it wasn’t exactly what we were believing for. There really is a balance between “not giving up on your faith” and staying surrendered at the same time. 
God did honor our Faith, but he also had us make some adjustments in the process of having Faith. By his Spirit, he challenged our thinking. Isn’t that what a good Father should do? 
This is our house now: garage
  
     God is smarter than we are, and it’s not that we should just “give up on having faith” nor should we just say, “Whatever will be will be.” God commends (and honors) people who have faith. Do not shrink back! (Hebrews 10:39). 
Laura Grace, Author, Grace to the Rescue, Grace to Grow, & Dsyfunctional People. 

 Hebrews 11:35 “Women received back their dead, raised to life again. There were others who were tortured, refusing to be released so that they might gain an even better resurrection. 36 Some faced jeers and flogging, and even chains and imprisonment. 

3These were all commended for their faith, yet none of them received what had been promised, 40 since God had planned something better for us so that only together with us would they be made perfect.” 
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Are you praying for your town (or city?)

l town

 
What if one person prayed in every single town? Do you think it would make a difference? I believe it would. Genesis 18 says God agreed to save Sodom and Gomorrah over 10 righteous men (see below) WOW.
 
Remember Miss America Pageants? “I want world peace” they often say. Where does world peace begin? IN YOUR House and IN YOUR TOWN. You can’t beleive for something you have not achieved yet in your own household. Amen?
 
I’ve been praying for my town for quite some time now. IN fact, ever since I arrived here when I hear of issues here I pray about it. The school, the church, the local library..Post office…..
 
I’ve trained myself that when I hear of a problem (in my surrounding area) I go to God in prayer and petition him to help, to fix it, and make declarations of faith over the situation.
This keeps me busy! After that there is church, my famiy….Friends, loved ones….And yes of course, the Nation! I”ve seen many answers to prayer already! (many!!) even down to “help them find a good librarian and town Clerk!” When I lived in another town (Pictured below) I prayed for that town (daily) for years!
“Father I ask in every town in this nation, every government entity, every place there is Father, Raise up People to pray for their towns (and cities). Help them believe they make a difference too! IN Jesus’ name! I thank you that you hear the prayers of those crying out secretlly to you Father Help us to take heart and be encouraged that “People are praying”
IN Jesus’ name! amen!
 
Genesis 18:16-33 Abraham pleads for Sodom:
 
“31 And he said, “Indeed now, I have taken it upon myself to speak to the Lord: Suppose twenty should be found there?”
 
So He said, “I will not destroy it for the sake of twenty.”
 
32 Then he said, “Let not the Lord be angry, and I will speak but once more: Suppose ten should be found there?”
 
And He said, “I will not destroy it for the sake of ten.” 33 So the Lord went His way as soon as He had finished speaking with Abraham; and Abraham returned to his place” NKJV                    -Laura Grace, Author, Grace to the Rescue, Grace to Soar