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30.4.11

Free

























Living life the way it was meant to be. There has to be more to life than this! What am I here for? What is my purpose? Who am I really? I have to find myself! Am I good enough? Who am I? Is life meant to be like this? Questions everyone asks at some point in their life but seldom find the answers to. "Free" explores all these nagging questions.

Book available at: Amazon.com | Amazon.co.uk | Kindle
Free audio here:  Part 1, Part 2, Part 3

Contents:
Introduction
Free from Masks
Free from the Past
Free from Shame
Free from Fear
Free to Forgive
Free to Say No
Free to Be Me
Free to Live
Free to Be Weak
Free to Love
Free to Laugh
Free to Give
Free to Lead
Free Gifts
Freely He Gave

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28.4.11

Passion & Purity - Searching for Passion

The power of my choice

The season of living like a pig lasted about six months, during this time my first husband and I were separated. He was never someone I could lean on sadly, so when I went down my path of destruction he followed and went down his own path of destruction. We were separated but neither one of us could have been bothered to find a new home so we still both lived in the same home. Weird, I know! After we both got bored with it all, we got back together again as husband and wife. I can’t remember the details, but somehow we found our way back to God too. We repented and continued with our marriage as if nothing had happened. A few years later our daughter Jordan was born and we lived what seemed like a normal Christian family life. Skip a few more years, a few seasons of good times and a few seasons of hard times, you know – normal life. I became bored with life and life’s struggles, I wanted a better life and I needed more adventure. My husband was without a job yet again and I was fed up of the cycle, so I suggested that we move from South Africa to England, to start a new life. The country was different, the people were different but I was NOT different. Adventure enticed me away from church. To be honest church was boring. I didn’t want another picnic in the park or another service where the preaching told me that I wasn’t good enough yet. 

I wanted to feel alive!

My new job and my new friends made me feel alive. They liked me; they thought I was clever, they thought I was fun. I had found new computer skills that I didn’t know I had and respect from my colleagues that I had never experienced before. After being a stay at home mom most of my life I found this new me quite fun. I had reinvented myself. I was no longer a stay at home mother who was a great cook and good at changing nappies. I had discovered something way more interesting inside of me. I was a clever business woman now and I was attractive to my male colleagues. Again, something I had never experienced before - I had never seen myself as this sort of woman. The adventure had begun, life had become interesting and I loved it. I started working longer hours so that I could go to the pub afterwards with my work friends. Going to the pub turned into going away for weekends which turned into an intense party lifestyle. This time it was different, I wasn’t partying with unemployed bums who had no ambition, I was partying with hard working professionals who needed to let their hair down. I felt alive for the first time in ages, I was impressed that there was more to me than I ever realised.

Men noticed me.

The men at work must have found this sparkle attractive as I was constantly hit on by my male colleagues. I enjoyed the attention as I hadn’t felt attractive in a very long time. One man however, made it his mission to catch this married woman. I guess his thrill was to get something that he shouldn’t have. He came on strong and I accepted some of his invitations as they were fun. He spent lots of money on me and took me to places that I had never been to. Literally. He took me to London and up North. 

I was lured by all his attention and I enjoyed living the fine life eating at fine restaurants and driving in fancy cars. At the time I lived in a shabby council bed and breakfast and coming home to this every day was severely depressing. His apartment was gorgeous and I was welcome to stay there any time. So I did. I stayed over regularly and thought that is was fine as I hadn’t ‘crossed the line’. I wasn’t having an affair because we weren’t having sex. I fooled myself into thinking that it was OK; I was just having some well deserved fun! After all, life had been very difficult in the past few years. How foolish can one girl be! This guy wasn’t going to be happy with giving and giving all this time and money while I gave nothing back. 

He began to pressure me for sex and I kept saying no. He continued to seduce me and flatter me until I couldn’t resist any more. Although I really wasn’t interested in having sex with him, I did feel that I owed it to him. So history repeated itself. Same story, just different people and a different country, this time with two innocent children caught in the middle.
I clearly remember the day I chose the wrong path. It was a lovely summer’s evening and the children were tucked in bed sound asleep. Standing by the unlit fireplace, with a glass of wine in my hand, I prayed to God. In all my good seasons and bad seasons I always talked to God. I loved Him, I truly did. Looking back, I can see that He has been with me through it all and it breaks my heart thinking about how much I must have hurt Him. 

On one occasion I was chatting to God about my life of partying and drinking. I was standing by a lit electric fire with a nice glass of red wine in my hand. Christina worship music was playing softly in the background as I had just finished singing my heart out to God. I loved God and I loved to worship Him. It was a special moment and I felt close to God. It was then that I strongly felt God saying that I have to make a choice between the two paths that were before me. One was to continue as I was with the understanding that it would lead to destruction and the other was to repent and go down a new path with Him. Laughing out loud, I said to God,

“I know that this path is wrong but I am having so much fun! You probably want me to go down the other path but I can’t, I feel so alive, I need to be happy.”

The words that I spoke and what I felt in that moment is permanently etched in my mind. I foolishly chose to continue down the path of drinking and destruction. I said in response to God’s kind and pleading offer,

“I know I will get hurt in the end but I can’t let go of it, so I choose to keep going down this path.”

That was the end of my conversation with God. It was also the last time I heard His voice for quite some time. My life on the path of ‘fun’ continued. I was living it up with prodigal living in London, enjoying the attention of men, fine dining and all the fun that money could buy. I had gone from a nice Christian, South African housewife to a woman with a career, money and the attention of men, men who noticed me for my brains as well as my body. I liked this as it was new to me; I had always been a stay at home mom who felt stupid and worthless as a woman. The excitement thrilled me and I was swept up by the adventure of it all. 

Once again I was leading a double life which quickly caught up with me. My husband and children were in one life in Crawley and the ‘fun’ was in another life that was about an hour’s train ride away – in London. One life was based in a dodgy council home in Crawley and the other life was based in a luxury London apartment. My time in London increased from the odd day trip to every weekend. In time even that wasn’t enough, so I decided that I needed to live in London permanently. I told my children that once I was settled into a new home and new job I would fetch them to live with me.
Looking back I am so ashamed. Imagine the confusion that these little ones must have felt. One minute we lived in South Africa leading a lovely, ordinary, Christian family life and then the next minute we were in England with a mommy living like a party animal away from daddy, in London.
It’s horrible to think that when I made my choice to have ‘fun’ they had no choice at all. It’s shameful to think that while I was enjoying the attention of the new men in my life, they were losing the attention that they craved from their mother. Worst of all, it is disgusting to think that they will read this book and weep over how stupid their mother was. I weep every time I read this paragraph, even though I am free from my guilt and shame, my girls have still not yet discovered the truth of what happened. My girls are so precious to me and they didn’t deserve this at all. It is so very sad that little ones so precious are so often left with no choice at all. Lorah and Jordan, I am truly sorry that I was so selfish most of my life – you really did deserve so much better than this.
The next time I heard God’s voice was a few months after I decided to take the path that was most fun. I was sitting on the floor in the home where my husband and children lived. This was before I made my final move to London; I was still living in two places between two lives. With a bottle of wine in my one hand and a razor blade in the other, I sat contemplating suicide. I no longer felt alive and life was not fun anymore. My life was a complete mess and I had lost all hope. Sitting on the floor feeling hurt, alone and drunk, I desperately wanted a way out of it all. As I sat on the floor, slicing my wrists with the razor blade, I heard God’s voice say to me,

“Angela, the next cut on your wrist will do the job. If you cut yourself again you will die. Is this what you want? It is your choice but I am warning you that the next cut will be your final one. What do you want?”

What happened to all the fun? Alive was not what I felt now. My sin had caught up with me and it was time to pay the price. The bible is crystal clear about what the price is.

Romans 6:23
For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.

That night God gave me the very powerful choice that He gives all of us in the Bible,

Deuteronomy 30:19
I call heaven and earth as witnesses today against you, that I have set before you life and death, blessing and cursing; therefore choose life, that both you and your descendants may live;

I quickly sobered up as I realised the reality of my situation. Lorah and Jordan’s faces flashed before me in my mind and I realised how much my death would hurt them. Realising my selfishness, I decided that I didn’t want to leave them in this way. Nevertheless the urge to die was still strong. A tug of war was in progress deep within my soul as I sat contemplating the consequences of leaving my children through suicide. Satan wanted my life to end this way but God knew that I still had a future and a hope . I fought in my mind, I wrestled in my heart and then finally the decision was made. I let out the deepest cry I have ever cried and I said to God;

“I want to live but I don’t know how to, please help me!”

In all my wrong choices and all my flings and affairs all I really wanted was passion and adventure! ‘What a stupid thing to say’ you might be thinking to yourself. You are probably either a really “good” person who has never done much wrong in your life which means you certainly don’t want to read any more of this book, or you are someone who is as screwed up as I was and totally understand what I am saying! In fact even if you are the “good” person, I’m sure that there is something inside of you that loves the adventure and drama of my story or else you wouldn’t still be reading this book to see what happens next! That, my precious friend, is you longing for passion and adventure too. We were made to be passionate, some more than others, and clearly I was blessed with an extra dose of this desire! Sadly in my case, the desire for passion that God had given me was channelled into all the wrong places because of my lack of purity. Passion and purity together can lead to the most extraordinary, deeply satisfying life. Passion without a pure heart before God can lead you into all sorts of trouble. Passion is not bad; it is how God made us. Passion without purpose is where the danger comes in. I have plenty of passion but what I lacked was purpose and purity.

After my encounter with God I made a firm decision to sort myself out. I knew it wasn’t going to be easy and I knew I had a lot of work to do to get myself back on track. Making the choice was half the battle won. Even though I knew I had loads of ‘fixing’ to do, I knew that I had already won a part of the battle by simply making the right choice this time. God clearly warned me that this would happen that evening that I made the wrong decision as I stood by the fireplace with my nice glass of wine in my hand. He warned me of the consequences but still he gave me the freedom to choose. It must have grieved Him deeply when I made that choice. He must have grieved over my rejection of walking with Him and He must have grieved knowing the pain I was going to have to endure. Looking back, I recognised what I fool I had been choosing that path! Things were going to be different now, for the first time in my life I made the right choice. From that moment forward it was one hundred percent all the way on the ‘God path’. I made a firm decision that this was the only way for me for the rest of my LIFE!
Something inside of me had changed, I could feel it. It was the power of my choice. For the first time in my life I really meant business with God, I wasn’t interested in dabbling any more, I wanted the real thing and I wanted all that I could have. My search for passion now was going to be focused on the search for a passionate love affair with Jesus. The decision was made and there was no turning back ever again. I longed for passion. I knew this was my ultimate weakness. All my life, since I was a little girl, I had been so desperate for love and adventure. I can’t remember a time when I didn’t feel this way. God made me this way. He made me passionate so that He could be caught up in a beautiful romance with Jesus. Sadly, I had no idea that this was what it was all about. All I knew was what I felt and that what I felt was never satisfied. One thing I knew for sure was that the devil was not going to trip me up with this weakness of mine. Never again, NOT EVER! No longer was I blind to his trap and was determined to steer clear of it no matter what this meant I had to do.
Months passed and the rebuilding of my life became agonizingly painful. Pain which could have been avoided easily if I had chosen a different path to start off with! God was tender and merciful to me in so many ways as I struggled to rebuild my broken life. After what I had done to Him, I knew that I really didn’t deserve any of the grace and mercy that He was giving me.
My mother was a pillar of strength for me and without her love and support I don’t know how I would have made it. She had no idea what I had been up to and what I had been through. I guess she simply thought I was hurting because my first marriage failed. The truth is my marriage hadn’t failed, I had. My first husband was happy to work things out yet again. He was willing to pretend like nothing happened AGAIN and carry on from where we left off. I knew that it just wasn’t going to work; I had to sort myself out on my own. Clearly there was something very wrong with me or else I wouldn’t have gone through exactly the same situation twice in one marriage!
My most amazing mother flew me out to her in home in Denver, Colorado where I spent a month going through an intense healing process with God. It was as if God had placed me in his heavenly operating theatre. Oh how I didn’t deserve any of what He did for me and any of what my mother did for me. I was the filthiest, vilest, most selfish person on the planet and I only deserved to be stoned to death as the adulterous women were in Bible times (and in some countries still today).
During this time God cleaned me up and showed me the way forward. I spend a lot of time crying and repenting. Many days I wondered how God could love me or even look at me. I had intentionally chosen paths in my life against His will and His clear warnings. How on earth could He still love me? Why was He being so nice and kind to me now, after all I had done? Oh precious grace! I never quite understood what grace meant until I had experienced it. This is grace – His love poured out over me despite what I have done and where I have been. It is His mercy given freely to me even though I don’t deserve it. Most of all, His son, Jesus, spilled His precious blood for me so that at this very moment in time I can be forgiven and given another brand new start. I never thought the story of the prodigal son was very fair, and I still don’t, but I can tell you that I am so glad that it exists. If it weren’t for that story I don’t know what would have become of me.
While God tenderly healed me and worked on my messed up heart, He also gave me a vision for the future. He told me that it’s OK that I longed for passion but it needs to be expressed in His way for His purposes.

More chapter snippets about how I found passion and God's purpose will follow soon, find out more about the book here.
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25.4.11

Being a Woman - Who is Not Ashamed

What are you ashamed of? Your height or your hair, your deepest, darkest secret or your husband who swears all the time or perhaps you are ashamed of what you have done or the woman you have become. No matter how tiny or how huge, we all carry some sort of shame. God’s desire is that we are women who are not ashamed. This is how it was in the beginning and this is one of the areas that we need to take back.

Genesis 2:25
And they were both naked, the man and his wife, and were not ashamed.

Can you imagine walking around in a beautiful garden completely naked? Just thinking about it makes me cling to my clothes! I don’t believe it was only a physical nakedness that they experienced but a nakedness of their hearts too. Adam and Eve had nothing to hide from God, no secrets, no guilt, no fears and no shame. They lived in perfect harmony with the one who made them. It must have been so amazing; my mind can’t even conceive such a thing. But sadly they blew it! They listened to someone other than God and believed what that 'someone' said. Once they believe the lie they then acted upon it... well you know the rest of the story. “At that moment their eyes were opened, and they suddenly felt shame at their nakedness. So they sewed fig leaves together to cover themselves.”
Their immediate reaction was to hide themselves from God, to hide their shame, to cover up what they had done. Children do this don’t they? As soon as they have done something wrong they find a way to hide it from their parents. We are no different, as adults we are still trying to hide things from our heavenly father! The worst thing is that we are also trying to hide ourselves from relationship with God just like Adam and Eve did. “And they heard the sound of the Lord God walking in the garden in the cool of the day, and Adam and his wife hid themselves from the presence of the Lord God among the trees of the garden.”

The first thing that went wrong after Adam and Eve sinned was that they hid themselves from the presence of God. Hiding from God was one of the first steps that Adam and Eve took away from their purpose. They were designed to walk with God and hang out in His presence. We need to get back to that place, the place of being close to God. It’s not that God is far from us, of course not! He very clearly said that He would never leave our side . The problem is us, we are hiding from God because we are ashamed. Imagine this conversation between a father and a son;

“Dad I am so sorry I stepped on my toy and broke it! I am so sorry.”

“That’s OK son, I forgive you. Here is another one but please take better care of it this time. I spent hours making this toy for you because I love you and I knew that you would break the first one. Perhaps you will be more grateful for this new toy now.”
Imagine if the child then went and hid in the garden shed totally ashamed of what he had done. Imagine the father’s face when, after frantically searching for the son, he found him in the shed with the new toy still crying.

“Son, what are you doing?”

“Dad I just feel so bad for what I have done. I am just going to sit here so that you can’t see me anymore, so that you won’t be angry with me.”

“But son, I am not angry. I made you a new toy and I dearly want to see you playing with it in the garden. I want to see you smile and be happy again. I don’t want to see you sitting here in the dark, garden shed. It hurts me more to see you sitting here than it did when you broke the toy in the first place. Please go out into the sunshine and play so I can watch you and enjoy your smiles.”

Perhaps this is an oversimplified illustration, but it is very similar to what we do. We have nothing to be ashamed of! The day that we accepted Jesus into our life is the day that God gave us a brand new life . Moping about feeling bad for what we have done is like sitting in the shed crying about a broken toy when we have a brand new on in our hands. Our father is more interested in what we are going to do with our new life than He is in the bad things we have done in the past!
When we are free from shame in the presence of God we will find freedom from all the other shame’s too. Slowly we start to like our physical features, no longer do we feel ashamed of the way we look. It’s easy to love the way you look when you realise that God loves the way you look! It doesn’t end here either, we walk in the grace that we have received and so we no longer feel ashamed about our husband or parents or friends. Grace are our new glasses and we begin to filter people with this new found freedom. Our hearts grows with love and compassion for people because we have tasted the love and compassion that God has shown us.
Shame slowly dissipates and we return to our rightful place, walking in the ‘garden’ close to God. What makes you feel shame?  Get closer to God, ask Him to remove your shame and see what He will do.  You can be a woman who is not ashamed.

The Being a Woman book and worksheets are available here.
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22.4.11

Passion & Purity - Robbed of Purity

In the beginning

It all started out rather innocently. I was nineteen years old at the time, a very young wife and mother. We were introduced by a friend of my husband. His name was Ben. A few days later we bumped into each other on the bus and got chatting. He had a very sweet way of speaking to me and he called me ‘love’. I liked that. No one had ever called me ‘love’ before. I didn’t think anything of it, I was married after all, but I did like the way he made me feel when he called me ‘love’. It made me feel special.
A few weeks after our first meeting, he started coming over to my home to visit me. A few more weeks passed and we began spending a lot of time together. I was at home all day with my two year old daughter and he was free during the daytime too as he was out of a job. He didn’t need to bother with work as he was still living at home with his parents. We were both very young and very bored. We enjoyed each other’s company very much so we began getting together very often – almost every day. My husband liked the fact that I wasn’t so bored and lonely anymore. He encouraged me to spend time with Ben and even to go out to the pub and to parties with him when he wasn’t able to accompany me.
One evening Ben and I were at a pub and we decided that ‘as a joke’ I would display my wedding ring to the bar tender very obviously and then he would put his hand with no wedding ring on mine. We were faking an affair and the sheer naughtiness of it was thrilling! I thought it was great fun but the thought of actually having an affair never crossed my mind at all. But it was fun to pretend in front of the bar tender. The joke was on me however! How was the bar tender to even know our situation? Obviously he had no clue and was so busy he probably didn’t even notice the wedding ring hints and silly comments we were throwing his way. The joke was definitely on me because now I had crossed a line in my mind that should not have been crossed.
I enjoyed the thrill of this staged affair and gave no consideration at all to what I was really doing. I was on an adventure by simply playing a game but not really doing it!
Well as you no doubt guessed, my affection for Ben grew and I became infatuated with him and our little pretend affair. Soon we began having long, intimate talks revealing deep things from our hearts to each other. He told me how his heart was broken by his recent girlfriend and how he still loved her and desperately wanted her back. I immediately wanted to rescue this heartbroken boy (that’s how I saw him) and aimed to help him feel better again. My infatuation grew stronger and the inevitable happened, the staged affair became a real affair. I had crossed the line completely. By this time I was deeply entrenched in a night time lifestyle of drinking and partying with Ben. I had gone from a sweet, young, teenage Christian girl who loved staying home baking cookies to a party animal who stayed out all hours with Ben.
You may be wondering why on earth I would be telling you this. If you know me or know of me you may even be shocked. The truth is... I am fed up of God doing amazing things in people’s lives and Him getting no glory for it. Get a good clear picture of the person that I was so that when I tell you what God has done for me and who I am now you will marvel with me at how awesome He really is.
I am only telling one of my gory stories, there are more but I will spare you the details as I am sure you get the picture now. Let’s just make the observation that I was not a pure woman. You could accuse me of many qualities but purity would not be one of them. Up to this affair I honestly had never known purity anyway. I was nineteen years old going on twenty and would only truly experience the precious purity that Jesus gave me at thirty years of age. But let’s not jump ahead now, there is still much more to tell.

Chapter snippets will follow soon, full details about this book here.
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20.4.11

Happy 16th Birthday Jordan

You might be wondering what me sanding has to do with Jordan's birthday! Well, for her birthday this year we completely redecorated her bedroom!  We had three days while she was away to paint her walls, remover her carpet, sand the floors and buy her cool stuff for her room! It was hard work but we did it!  Here is the end result :)


Happy Birthday Jordan - We are all very proud of the lovely young woman that you have become.  Enjoy being a real princess in a real princess bedroom. xxx
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13.4.11

50 First Dates

If you asked Ruth what date she got saved she could probably give you 50 dates, although she doesn't remember any of them.  For the past year, every Sunday, without fail, she puts her hand up to accept Jesus as her Lord and Saviour.  It is the most beautiful thing ever!  You see, she had a car accident a few years ago which resulted in her memory not functioning as it should.  So each Sunday, when she hears the gospel, she responds as if it's her first time and accepts Jesus into her life yet again.

Have you ever watched the movie, 50 First Dates? Each day Henry must get Lucy to fall in love with him all over again, and again and again. Henry is completely smitten. But when he takes the big step of seeing her the next day, Lucy does not remember him. As the result of a past car accident, she has no short-term memory. When she wakes up after a night’s sleep, she is completely unaware of the passing of time. It is a beautiful movie that reminds me so much of Ruth.

Jesus is completely smitten with Ruth.  Each Sunday, Jesus wins her heart. He doesn't tire of loving her, and He doesn't stop bothering to win her heart.  He loves her so much and will do whatever it takes to help Ruth fall in love with Him each and every week. Each Sunday, we celebrate with her as she declares her  new found love for Jesus, again. Each Sunday is really precious and we never tire of seeing her little hand slip up during the altar call.  One Sunday I believe she will be completely healed, but in the mean time I will continue to rejoice with her new found love for Jesus each and every week.
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10.4.11

Passion & Purity - Introduction

It's that time again - time for the much awaited release of my next book, Passion & Purity.  I say much awaited because I already have pre-orders lined up ready for the official June release.  This is the third book in the three part series and my wonderful friends who have proof read say it's the best of the three - the cherry on top of the cake.  Personally, I found this book the hardest to write and I really didn't want to release it.


Never-the-less, I have put my pride in my pocked and am going to share it with you despite my fears.  So here goes... the very first pages of the Introduction.

For obvious reasons, I really didn’t want to write this book and I dreaded the thought of publishing it! The Loving Life Series has been a series of three books covering my story but the part of the story that I focus on in this book is very difficult to admit to. Never-the-less, I knew I could not avoid writing it!

Philippians 2:4-7
Let each of you look out not only for his own interests, but also for the interests of others. Let this mind be in you which was also in Christ Jesus, who, being in the form of God, did not consider it robbery to be equal with God, but made Himself of no reputation...

In writing my story I chose to lay down my reputation for the interest of others. You see, I could have kept quiet about my life and preserved my good reputation as a pastor’s wife and leader in our community, but how would that help anyone else. My story is a story of redemption, a story where God gets the glory because it is clear what sort of woman I was without Him.

I fully expect the criticism and insults of those that are either religious or have never needed grace (or so they think). But the ones who struggle and feel that they have fallen too far from God to ever get back to Him, to these people I write as I know that what God did in my life will bring hope to them too.

Precious woman (or man) of God, no matter where you have been or what you have done in your life, you are only one step away from total forgiveness and restoration. You will read how I hurt God on many occasions, how I chose to walk away from Him many times. You will also read how He loved me in the good times and the bad times, how He always made a way for me to come back to Him and how He never gave up on me – EVER!

I am free, I am pure, I am forgiven and I am totally in love with the One who loved me before I knew how to love Him back. I write to you, making myself of no reputation, so that God can get the glory for the awesome life that I lead today.

Chapter snippets will follow soon, full details about this book here.
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6.4.11

Embarrassing Moment

After a few people mentioning that there were spelling and grammar errors in my book, Hope's Journey, I decided to have a read!  Much to my embarrassment I realised that the incorrect version of the book went to print.  I am so sorry to those of you that have bought it, you should have said something!  Anyway, the correct version is going to Amazon right away and the few unedited versions that I have I am going to offer for £5 instead of £10, if you would like one of these duds for a reduced price you can get it here - you will get the same story but with a few typos.
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Being a Woman - Helps & Protects

In Genesis 2:18 it says that God gave a woman to Adam as 'help' meet for him. This word 'help' comes from the Hebrew word  עזר ‛êzer (ay'-zer) which means aid or help.  This word aid or help comes from the root word עזר ‛âzar (aw-zar') which means to surround, protect, help & succour.   I was fascinated when I discovered this as I always saw my helper role as a woman as the sort of helper that makes tea for meetings and does the dishes, you know what I mean?  This word 'êzer' seems so much stronger than that.  It is as if the role of the helper is to protect the man when he is in great distress or need.
So as women we are not designed as helpers to make a cuppa tea, no we are way more than that.  God designed us to surround our husband with help & protection.  Since we already know that we are the weaker vessel physically, it stands to reason that this is not a physical help or protection but perhaps a protection of his heart.  His heart also reflects the image of God, we need to cover him in times when that is threatened. We need to come to his rescue when he is in distress not by nagging him and telling him he is a looser but by rescuing him with our prayers and our words of encouragement.  To support him as he wrestles through difficult things and to cover him with love.  Perhaps it might even mean defending him when someone speaks against him.This discovery lead me to see where else 'âzar' was used in the Bible so that I could better understand what it meant. Well, you'll never guess what I found!

Psalm 115:11
You who fear the Lord, trust in the Lord;
He is their help (êzer) and their shield.

Psalm 121:1-2
I will lift up my eyes to the hills—
From whence comes my help (êzer)?
My help (êzer) comes from the Lord,
Who made heaven and earth.

Do you see what I see?  The sort of help that we give our men is the same sort of support that God gives His people.  There are so many verses in the Bible using the word helper, have a look for yourself, it's so interesting.  This completely blew my mind, I had no idea how important our role as helper is.  Of course I am still going to make a nice cup of tea for Eric when he wants one, but deep down inside I know that I am the princess warrior that I wanted to be.  Just like I used to play when I was a little girl - I was fearless and courageous and beautiful - everything all at once. Sadly growing up took away this girlish fantasy but my new discovery is surely going to bring it back.  Did you ever see yourself as that sort of helper?

More coming from Being a Wife, find out more here.
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3.4.11

Happy Mother's Day

Being a mother is the most amazing thing in the world and I am so grateful to God that I have been able to have four healthy children.  I know many women who haven't been blessed with children and their story breaks my heart.  This mother's day I want to thank God for the privilege of being a mother and I want to do this by supporting other mother's who have taken eight children under their wings in Watoto, Uganda.  These amazing women have made a decision to live in a house to love and raise children that have been left orphans by issues such as poverty, HIV/AIDS, war and some children that have been rescued from the child soldier crisis in Uganda.

Last week I had the privilege of hearing the stories first hand from some of the orphans and hear their beautiful voices sing in the Watoto Children's Choir.  My 'first world' selfishness was exposed and I was humbled by these beautiful people sharing their story of the hope that they have found in Jesus.  As I watched children lost in true worship I felt ashamed for those of us living in this country who make excuses not to go to church or don't bother to get involved in worship.  We are living in one of the richest countries in the world and have more than most people but too many find it too much of a bother to lift our hands in church and give praise to the God who gave us all these good things.  

Thank you Watoto, you have reminded me about what is important and this mother's day I dedicate to you.  Thank you to all the mothers who have dedicated their lives to raising the orphans of Uganda.  I respect you, deeply admire you and will find ways to support you.  You are truly beautiful in a way that many of us can only dream of.  It is my privilege to serve you - Happy Mother's Day!
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