Saturday, March 14, 2015

behavior modification

As of yesterday it has now been five months since sweet little Seth's Homecoming.  During the previous months of the 13th day I cried, grieved, and was so incredibly angry.  Not only was I mourning the loss of my precious little son, I was also mourning my families life as we knew it.  In an instant our whole world stopped, and yet somehow....... life kept going.  

I remember those first few days, where we all walked around in a daze, and each time someone would come visit us, or bring food, or call, it was as if though we just apart of the most horrific horror film any of us had ever seen.  

By the time we hit the sixth week mark, visitors stopped coming as regularly, and the food, and support stopped pouring in.  It was as if life was moving on without us, and cruelly was telling me that I especially needed to do the same.  In knowing that, I became angry.  So angry that I could hardly SEE anything that was good in my life.  So angry that I began to say things, and give into feelings and emotions that I had prayed that I wouldn't have to battle in coping with the massive loss of my precious little love.

By three months in I was saying "I hate everyone, and everything, I hate life, I hate that Seth died, I hate that this has happened to our family.  I hate happy families, I hate seeing happy, JOY filled people.  I hate that I'm missing out on my life.  I hate...... I hate..... I hate...."  It was as if though I were trapped in this living nightmare, and even though I knew, and TRUSTED HIM that HE had amazing plans for my families future..... I couldn't SEE beyond the HATE, the ANGER, the RAGE that I felt because I was being FORCED to deal with something, that I had absolutely NO say in what so ever.  

To be completely honest, I was so incredibly angry with HIM.  Over and over I relived the week before, the day before, I racked my brain as to how could GOD do this to me?  I was HIS, I am HIS FAITHFUL follower, I speak HIS words, I speak HIS truth, I was ALL in, do you HEAR ME GOD, I WAS ALL IN????????"  Questions plagued my mind,  as the anger and animosity towards anything HE was calling me to do began to consume my every thought.  

I would have days where I could SEE HIS HOPE in front of me, and could SEE and experience HIS GREAT LOVE for me.... those were the good days.  Then there were the days where I was so beyond devastated, angry, and dare I even say pissed off that this was really my life.  So angry that I couldn't SEE beyond the blinding pain, and couldn't begin to speak in a positive way...... those were some of the darkest days of my existence. 

Then a week ago today I had the most endearing heart to heart talk with D, that we have ever had in our twenty years of doing this life together.  In one morning's time, HE had me open my heart up to the brokenness, the ugliness, the hatred, the animosity, the hurt..... the flood gates opened, and the result would be one of the most PEACE filled, HOPE filled, JOY filled weeks of my life, since the day my world....... stopped. 

So much good has come out of this past week, and being on the now 8th day of relief, as I have been set FREE from the pit of despair.  As I sit here typing, and thinking back to everything that has transpired this week, I can smile, and even laugh at some of the things that I witnessed, and experienced.  I can tell you it is because HE has captured my heart in the most LOVING way, HIS way, and today HE has asked me to share with you how HE did it.

HIS Daily Teachings today is teaching me that the only way I was able to climb OUT of the pit of despair, was by choosing to TRUST HIM completely, and by seeking HIM and waiting on HIS timing to teach, lead, and guide me in how to do just that.  HE is wanting me to know today that it wasn't that I just begged HIM to HELP me.  HE is telling me that the only way I have been able to experience, and feel HIS TRUE JOY, and TRUE PEACE is because HE has taken me through a complete Behavior Modification.  

"But who can discern their own errors? Forgive my hidden faults. Keep your servant also from willful sins; may they not rule over me. Then I will be blameless, innocent of great transgression." Psalm 19:12-13

Two weeks ago at church we sang a new song, well new for me anyways, and it was basically Psalm 51:10-12.  As we sang the songs few verses over and over again.... something began to awaken deep within me.  I could feel HIS HOPE rising up.  Over and over we sang, and the more I sang, the more HOPE filled I began to feel.  

"Create in me a clean heart Oh GOD, and renew a right SPIRIT within me.  Create in me a clean heart Oh GOD, and renew a right SPIRIT within me.  Cast me NOT away from THY presence Oh LORD, Take NOT THY HOLY SPIRIT from me.  Restore unto me, the JOY of THY Salvation, and renew a right SPIRIT within me."

"Create in me a pure heart, O God, and renew a steadfast spirit within me.Do not cast me from your presence or take your Holy Spirit from me. Restore to me the joy of your salvation and grant me a willing spirit, to sustain me." Psalm 51:10-12

The next day was Monday, another mark, another cruel reminder that another week has passed that we lived this life without our precious little one.  Determined that I would NOT be despair filled, I "tried" to just accept that life was changing.... in the determination, I was resolved to NOT cry.  As the day wore on, my emotions began to spill out of me, and tears, anger filled tears, despair filled tears began to pour from eyes, and pool as oceans at my feet.  I felt as if though I couldn't cry had enough.  I was filled with total anguish in knowing that no matter how hard I cried, as soon as I would experience even an ounce of PEACE, another ocean of tears was waiting to pour out from my weary aching eyes. 

"My tears have been my food day and night, while people say to me all day long,"Where is your God?” Psalm 42:3

Somehow, just as all the other Monday's prior, I made it through that day.  The next day I sang Psalm 51:10-12 and wanted so desperately wanted to know what that looked like for me.  Over and over I sang it, and yet NOTHING was happening.  My anger towards HIM was rising up, and was reaching its boiling point.  I was brought to the brink of saying GOD seriously... if you don't rescue me now, I'm going to STOP speaking YOUR words, as I'm NOT going to have this target on my back anymore."  

" Put on the full armor of God, so that you can take your stand against the devil’s schemes." Ephesians 6:11

A week ago Saturday is when I reached my boiling point, and even though all I could SEE and feel was anger, as I was so deep with the pit of despair, HE knew, and HE was about to lead me through a series events of yet another loving, and soul capturing rescue for my life, my heart, my body, and my mind.  It was on a Saturday morning, where I found myself still in bed at 10 am, with NO plans of EVER getting out of bed.  Through several talks with each of my family members, and ending with my talk with D..... HE spoke, HIS words were heard, and felt, and that is when I know that HIS plans for my much needed  Behavior Modification began. 

"For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future." Jeremiah 29:11

HE is letting me know that I didn't coming up with the word challenge all on my own.  Rather HE put that word in my mouth, in my mind, so that when I felt the urge to say how hard things were, as that is a death filled word, HE then replaced it with HIS HOPE filled word.  HE is letting me know HE did this because as HE has been teaching me for the past 12 years now, that through every single test, trial, and storm they were filled with challenges that grew my FAITH in HIM, my TRUST in HIM, and my HOPE in HIM.  

"Consider it pure joy, my brothers and sisters,whenever you face trials of many kinds, because you know that the testing of your faith produces perseverance.  Let perseverance finish its work so that you may be mature and complete, not lacking anything.  If any of you lacks wisdom, you should ask God, who gives generously to all without finding fault, and it will be given to you. " James 1:2-5

HE is wanting me to know that the only way to grow in my life, is when I accept the challenge that each day brings.  I can tell you that in just that small Behavior Modification of ditching the word hard, and replacing it with the word challenge, something within me began to change.  

I went to bed that Sunday night, praying "LORD whatever YOU are doing within me now, please DON'T STOP, fill me with YOUR Strength to be able to accept and complete the challenge that tomorrow will bring.  Shower me with YOUR grace, and flood me with YOUR peace."  That night I went to sleep with HOPE restored.  

In thinking back to this past Monday all I can say is ONLY GOD, ONLY HE could work the miracles in my life.  This past Monday with HIS HOPE restored, D and I received the most amazing news, and received the most astonishing answer to our prayers that HE was blessing us with a new home to rebuild our families lives.  With just two phone conversations, we began to SEE glimpses of HIS plan for our family, and JOY was felt, experienced, and PEACE was all around.  It was as if though I was floating throughout the entire day, and even when thinking about Seth, I was sad, but yet so was so incredibly HOPE filled.  

" I consider that our present sufferings are not worth comparing with the glory that will be revealed in us." Romans 8:18

I was almost afraid to fall asleep that night as I didn't want this incredible HOPE filled state of being to end.  Much to my surprise, and HIS JOY I woke up that next morning feeling the same as I did the day before.  HE is letting me know today that is because I allowed HIM to teach me to let go of saying despair filled, by replacing it with HOPE filled  HE is wanting me to know that in changing those two words, was the next step in my much needed Behavior Modification.  

"weeping may stay for the night, but rejoicing comes in the morning." Psalm 30:5

Yesterday was the mark of 5 months of living this life missing Seth, and learning to cope, and learn to live my life well while still having to miss Seth.  This new knowledge HE is teaching me is the next step in my Behavior Modification.  With this next step I was able to do something yesterday that was much needed in order for my family and I to allow HIM to teach us how to rebuild our family.  Yesterday morning my four precious children and I went house shopping.  We had prayed that HE would lead us straight to the HOME that is waiting for us.  We prayed that HE would promptly close ALL of the doors on the houses that weren't for us.  Last night we did a 2nd walk through with D, and this weekend we have begun the process of becoming home owners once again.

" Blessed is she who has believed that the Lord would fulfill his promises to her!” Luke 1:45

I can tell you had I not experienced Behavior Modification I wouldn't have been in the right mind set to hear HIS words, as HE has been speaking them to me all week of the GLORIOUS FUTURE that HE has planned for each of our lives.  This past week I have the most endearing, heartfelt talks with each of my children in talking about their futures, their failures, and was able to share HIS amazing grace, overwhelming peace, and relentless love for each of them.  I know that had I NOT chosen to let go..... and let HIM take me through HIS plan of my Behavior Modification I wouldn't have been able to speak HIS truth to each of my children.  

Today I am overwhelmed by HIS amazing grace, overwhelming peace, and relentless love that I know, love, and experience daily.  Today I am in complete and total awe of HIS plans that HE is revealing to me one step at a time, in teaching me, showing me, and proving to me once again that HE truly does love and know me best, and that HIS plans are for GOOD, and that even in the midst of sorrow, sadness, pain, anger, and anguish, HE is there, HE is working it all for GOOD, and HIS plan is for me to NOT only know, but to experience HIS plans for my life, that are for GOOD.  It has been through total Behavior Modification that I am once again able to speak HIS words of life, and SHUT DOWN, SHUT UP, and SHUT OUT, the lies of the enemy, the death filled words of evil, and CAST out ALL feelings of fear, as I know that though I may feel fear, I don't have to worry whether or NOT HE will be there, as HE is already there, has been there, and when I seek HIM, and share my fear with HIM, HE will fill me with HIS power and authority by filling me with HIS strength to overcome every single one of my fears.

" being confident of this, that he who began a good work in you will carry it on to completion until the day of Christ Jesus." Philippians 1:6

"And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose." Romans 8:28

"There is no fear in love. But perfect love drives out fear, because fear has to do with punishment. The one who fears is not made perfect in love." 1 John 4:18

My Dear Brothers and Sisters in CHRIST JESUS,  It is my prayer today that if you too are in the pit of despair, hold fast dear ones, as HIS help is on the way.  I pray that you will know that HE truly does catch and collect every single of your tears, HE knows your pain, and HE wants to release you from the anguish that you feel.  I pray that you will know that though NOTHING in this life will ever be easy, it is possible with HIM.  I pray that through HIM, with HIM, you too will overcome the fears in your life, as you being the process of your own Behavior Modification.

Always in love and prayers, with much grace, compassion, and understanding,

Your Sister in CHRIST JESUS,

~ Heather 

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