Looking For Love In All The Wrong Places

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​There are so many people who suffer from a void in their life. They don’t realize what that void is, yet they try filling it with everything but what is needed.

Allow me to share my thoughts on the things we try to fill that void with.

 
Alcohol: Many take their first drink at the request of a friend or loved because they are suffering from something in their life that has left them hurting and feeling empty. So they take that drink thinking it will help….it doesn’t. Once you quit that drinking session and come out of your stupor that hole, that hurt, that problem is still there. Usually worse because you may have done something you regret while drinking.

 
There might be many who would love to debate this but there is nothing wrong with a drink. The Bible says this in Ephesians 5:18 And be not drunk with wine, in which is excess. Most don’t look at the second part of the verse. Having a drink occasionally is not a bad thing…IF you are living the second part of that verse…but be filled with the Spirit.

 
To me, personally, if you can not go a day without drinking some form of alcohol you are an addict.

 
Drugs: Same as above its just by the time you decide Oh God I’m screwed up you have probably lost your job, family, wife and kids, respect and honor.

 
Sex: This one of course is debatable but please remember these are my thoughts.

There are many women and men who use their bodies as a way to find love. And it can be a heterosexual, homosexual, bisexual or trisexual (meaning they will try any type of sex) encounter. Doesn’t matter they are trying desperately to fill a void in their heart. As the ole saying goes “Looking for love in all the wrong places.” And unfortunately, yes, they can become addicted to actual act of sex.

 
Porn: Does not matter whether it is on paper, on a phone, on a computer or a video that person is still trying to fill a void. But as with drugs it can become an addiction. And it is THE hardest one to overcome because you can actually avoid alcohol and drugs. You can’t avoid flesh…its everywhere! And advertised everywhere. And for the people who are bisexual it is even harder to overcome.

 
Marriage: Yes, I am going here. There are a lot of people who use marriage as a fix all in their life. Thinking if they get married that person will help them overcome the lonely, hurting and sadness in their lives. Once they realize that is not the case they divorce and head to the next one…vicious cycle for some. I have some friends that have been married 5 times.

 
Here is the thing folks. Alcohol will NOT fill that void in your life! Sex will NOT fill that void in your life! Drugs will NOT fill that void in your life! Porn will NOT fill that void in your life! Marriage will NOT fill that void in your life!

 
The only thing that CAN fill that void in your life is JESUS. Ask Him into you heart today and He will fill that void and you will finally have that love and peace you have been searching for. You want freedom from the addictions you have encountered looking for love give your heart to Jesus! 

Stop looking for love in all the wrong places and look to the One who created you…GOD, who loved you so much that He sent His Son to this earth just to die for you. Jesus died a sacrificial death so you can have a relationship with God. Won’t you please accept that gift of love today?

If you claim Christ but yet feel lost in your marriage. I say this. Your trust and fulfillment should be placed in Christ, not your spouse.
Divorce happens when we, as spouses, take our eyes off of Christ and place them on our spouse.

God Bless,

Stu

Dirty Laundry: Time To Clean

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Have you ever really cleaned a closet? I mean taking everything out and reorganizing everything as you go. I personally have. And I will tell you it’s a chore and a blessing at times to. There are a lot of things that get thrown into a closet. There are boxes in there that hold a lot of memories and while cleaning you just have to look into those boxes and remember..sometimes alone and sometimes it’s “Hey honey, come check this out!” And then after sharing the memories you put it right back where it was and close the lid. Maybe you cried, maybe you didn’t. I usually do whether it is in joy or sadness.
We would love to have everyone look into our closet and see freshly ironed shirts and pants. We like for them to look into our shirt drawer and see them neatly folded as well.
That would be perfect! But this world is a fallen mess! And our closets look nothing like that picture you just envisioned while reading the note above. Life sometimes is not pretty. Sometimes life hurts and we take our emotional clothing and just throw it in the closet, thinking it will go away or clean itself. 
They won’t! They will stay right there until you take it out, shake it off, put in through the washer..basically deal with it. You have to deal with the dirty laundry sometimes. And it hurts everytime you uncover another one. 
The cool thing about marriage is that you have someone who is willing to go through the closet of your life with you! And you know why? They love you and whatever hurts you hurts them. You are one. They want you to heal!
It really is time to clean the closets of our lives. That ole shirt we threw in the corner needs to be taken out. You grab one sleeve and and ask you spouse to grab the other. Shake it! Get the dust off and examine it. Together look at it and find that dirty spot that made you throw it the closet in the first place. Share the memories of that stain. Remember everything that affects you affects your spouse. Then pray together to find a way to wash the stain out. It may take several washings cuz there could another stain under the first one. 
And when it comes out of the dryer hang it with the “clean” shirts as a reminder of the healing that took place. After all we have the best detergent in the universe…the soul cleansing blood of the lamb.

Point To You

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This song so represents me. For so long I struggled with forgiving myself. I have had a ton of regrets. I needed a miracle in my life.

Most of you know my story with porn, drinking, resentment issues as well as my anger issues. In order to find who I, Stuart, truly was I had to do the only thing I knew that would bring about change. I surrendered my life to God.

It is only by the grace of God and many, many prayers that porn is out of my life. My drinking binges are gone though I will have A beer occasionally. Do I still harbor some resentment? Yes I do. Do I still have anger issues? Heck yeah! But I now step back and think before I let my tongue get me in trouble.

I have sought forgiveness for those I have wronged in the past. Well…as many as I can remember. I have forgiven those who have hurt me as well. A change has taken place in my life. Praise God I am a different man than I use to be.

Maybe that is why God called me to help those who are addicted to things that hurt them. I have been through so much crap that I can relate to just about anything someone throws at me.

For God’s life changing miracle I want to point others to Him. I want people to know that they are not alone, for I have suffered depression, suicidal thoughts, porn addiction, among other things. I want people to know that there IS a way out and a way to stop. And it is by surrendering to God.

God is still working miracles today by changing countless lives. He does it by taking you just as you are, in your brokenness, with your bruises and scars and starts working from the inside out. Allow Him to work in your heart and you too will point to Him as your strength, redeemer and savior when people ask who you owe this change to.

 

point to you

Point to You

How can I forgive when I can’t forgive myself

How can I move on when all I have is regrets

How can I fix you when I keep turning away

How can I make it past the noise with my shame

I need a miracle

Some healing for my heart

I want simplicity

Where I can rest

But I need a miracle to put my past to death

I know You want my heart

My bruises and my scars

I’m coming as I am

The only way I can

I can’t forget from where I’ve been

And what my heart’s been rescued from

Yeah when they ask me who

I owe my whole life to

I point to You

I point to You

I want so badly just to finally get well

But I don’t want a quick fix and emotional self

I will be honest with my humanity

No I’m not perfect and I don’t pretend to be

I need a miracle

Some healing for my heart

I need a revelation

I want simplicity

Where I can rest

But I need a miracle to put my past to death

I know You want my heart

My bruises and my scars

I’m coming as I am

The only way I can

I can’t forget from I’ve come

And what my heart’s been rescued from

Yeah when they ask me who

I ow my whole life to

I point to You

I point to You

People say that I’ve lost myself

I’ll say I’m found in You

People ask where does my story end

I’ll say it starts with You

I know You want my heart

My bruises and my scars

I’m coming as I am

The only way I can

I can’t forget from where I’ve come

And what my heart’s been rescued from

Yeah when they ask who

I owe my whole life to

I point to You

I point to You

I point to You

I point to You

Lyrics by Seth Mosley & Darren Mulligan for We Are Messengers

Snakes In The Playground

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Dear Fathers,

I know we look forward to walking our little girl down the aisle one day. I also know that many of us do not want that to happen until she is like 40. I believe that all of us want to do that, not only with a smile on our face but one on our heart as well knowing that we, as her father, have done all that we could to raise her in a Godly fashion.

But before we get that opportunity there are many things that I believe we must do.

First and foremost, you must lead by example. You should exhibit the very qualities you want your daughter to be looking for in a man.

You should be letting your little girl hear you tell her mother how much you love her every single day. Your daughter needs to not only hear of your love for her mother but she needs to see it in action.

That action can be in many forms. A simple kiss and hug for her mother when you get home. Instead of sitting in your favorite chair when you get home help with dinner. You should help with the dishes, the laundry and any other things that come to mind to show your love for her mother.

You should be telling her mother how beautiful she is in front of your little girl every day. She needs to see it in your eyes when you say it too.

You should be allowing her to see you kiss her mother as often as possible. Make them passionate kisses. It will let your daughter know that it is ok, to not only receive passion but to give it as well.

You need to be walking in integrity. It doesn’t matter if your daughter is with you or not she should be able to trust in the fact that your heart and your eyes are set only for your spouse. You do not need to be looking at other women in any form or fashion.

You should actually get to know the boy/young man that your daughter likes. Spend some time with this young man. You want to protect your daughter. You need to be willing to ask the hard questions. Now, when she finds out that you have asked certain questions she may be upset with you, but she will understand as she becomes older. She will come to realize that you are only trying to protect her.

Before you walk her down the aisle, though, her life will be full of trials. Some of those trials will be easy for her to handle. Others will not. The main thing you can do to prepare her for these trials and life in general is to point her to Christ. You need to nurture her in her relationship with the Father and His son because there will be snakes hiding out along the way in her journey.

Snakes in the playground…if you will.

snakes

A boyfriend who is viewing porn on a regular basis and could ask her the hard questions before you can ask him your questions. What if he wants her to become part of the blowjob club?

A single pop-up while she is looking at her laptop, which if she clicks on it could lead her to things she does not need to see. What would she do? How would she react? Would she come to you and say “Hey dad, this weird pop-up keeps appearing…could you make it go away? I feel uneasy with it showing up.”

A pop-up while you are looking at your laptop. What if she is walking by and click on the pop-up? She will lose her trust in you as your integrity goes down the drain in a heartbeat.

What if you do watch porn and forget to clear the site from view and gets on the computer next? What will she think? Will she believe that men really and truly like seeing things like that?

What if she is staying at a friend’s house and that friend has porn on her tablet? What would your daughter do if handed that tablet?

What about the peer pressure to smoke, drink, try drugs or have sex?

If you have led her properly and in a Godly manner she will be able to see those snakes coming at her before they strike.

Lead dear father…lead and walk in integrity.

Integrity

God Bless,

Stu

 

Things I Am Pondering Plus Requesting Prayer

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Here lately I have had many things to ponder. So much is going on in my life. Do I continue to write? I ask that question to myself a lot. It’s for lack of material…per se. It is for lack of time. If I continue to write, do I write more about porn and how it has affected me or do I write about more Godly things such as being the leader of the home…spiritually speaking.

As it is right now God has given me many thoughts on both topics. Now, understand that God has not told me to stop writing at all. It’s just something on my mind. He never stops speaking to me. My thing is managing my time to be able to put down what He says, when He says it to me so I do not forget by the end of the day.

Do I continue dating this amazing woman God has brought back into my life after years apart? Do I move from the town I live in now, where my kids are at, to the town I grew up in? With that move, yes, I will be closer to the woman I love but at the same time unable to see my kids as often as I want.

Right now I see my kids every day, for the most part. But once I make the move to my home town I may not be able to see them every other weekend simply because of time restraints and all the things the kids are involved in. Will they hate me for moving? Will they not love me anymore? Yeah, I know…crazy question but one I asked myself every day for the past several months.

I could go on and on about the woman I love but I will not because I have not asked her if I could share my thoughts. I will say that I love her dearly and she brings out the good in me. She lifts me up instead of tearing me down. It is through her that I found what my love language is and how much I so desperately need it in my life. She is amazing!!

I do want to move so that we can spend more time together building our relationship. That I do know. Being two hours apart may not seem like much to some people but to her and I it may as well be like we are on opposite sides of the world from each other. So in order to build the relationship not only do I know I want to move but I must move.

Career change might have to happen when I move as well. It takes about a full tank of gas, roughly fifty dollars, to go see my girlfriend on the weekends. That means if I were to try to commute it would consume the majority of my paycheck in gas driving back and forth. I love my job for several reasons. One being that it is eight to five Monday thru Friday. Two, I have weekends off. Then you have the simple fact that, though tiring, I enjoy it completely.

I could transfer to another location…if someone dies or quits. Those are about the only two ways to transfer with the company it seems like. So I am asking if you could pray for me in this area of my life for guidance.

I also have a hard time being able to communicate properly. Maybe it is all those years of hiding my porn usage to everyone. Maybe it’s that I never saw true communication between my parents. I don’t know. I do know that I need to change how I communicate things. So please pray for me in that area if you do not mind.

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Trying to Change

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Everyone wants to change something in their life in one form or another. And trust me, there is probably something in a loved one. The problem is you can’t or you would have already changed them into the “perfect” man or woman you want.

You can’t change if you are trying to change for anyone else other than yourself. You have to get to that point where it’s like alright I can’t do this anymore Lord, not because it hurts so and so but because it is hurting me and I know it is hurting you. And many times when we hit the part in the struggle we are in tears realizing what we have done or allowed. We are on our knees seeking forgiveness, redemption and love that only God can provide. That is the breaking point…rock bottom.

That is step one and for many it is the hardest step. The ensuing steps can be just as difficult. Finding a brother or sister in Christ to help hold you accountable and pray with and for you. Removing friends from your life that will hinder the growth God wants for you. Removing yourself from situations that could cause you to stumble.

For those who are earnestly trying to change…I applaud you…I will pray for you….and the best advice I can give is that you give your life over to God and His control day by day….moment by moment if you have to.

God Bless,
Stu

Change

Building Godly Character

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Everyone has heard the old saying “Your reputation precedes you.” And I am probably sure you have said this one before…”They have a bad reputation.”

 

Have you ever looked up the word reputation before? Let’s look at it for just a second. Reputation means the general estimation in which a person is held by the public. That’s kind of scary if you ask me. I personally do not want a reputation…an estimation of who I am based on by the general public.

 

To be honest the general public has no true understanding of who I am. They do not know what I do behind closed doors. I could be acting like the “perfect” Christian man only to be leading a double life when no one is looking.

 

Do you know the feeling of being impaired or divided in your thinking? If you ever question yourself as to if you should or should not do something you are divided. You are at war with yourself. You are not thinking straight. You have no guideline to follow.

 

The Bible says that you are unstable in ALL your ways.

A double-minded man is unstable in all his ways.

James 1:8

I, for one, do not want to be divided in my thinking. ­­­­­­­­­­­­­­I would love to always know that I am doing the right thing. I know that the only way I can make that happen is to work on my character.                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          

 

Character, according to The American Heritage dictionary, means the moral or ethical strength of a person and integrity.

Integrity means to have a rigid adherence to a code or standard of values, the state of being unimpaired; soundness, and the quality or condition of being whole or undivided.

 

The integrity of the upright shall guide them,

But the perverseness of the transgressor will destroy them

Proverbs 11:3

 

My code or standard of values should be based on the Bible and not what the world says. By adhering to Biblical standards I can be whole and undivided in my thinking and my actions. As can you dear friend.

bible

Our reputation will say one thing but our character will tell the truth.

 

Men, our reputation says that we do not look at pornography but our wife/fiancé/girlfriend, who sees our character, knows differently.

 

The ones closest to us see our character and they need to see us living it both in the home and outside the home.

 

We, as Christian men, need to ensure that our character is set to a higher standard. That standard can only be found in scripture as we seek God on a daily basis.

Let us press on men.

God Bless,

Stu

 

 

Focal Point

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Everyone takes pictures now-a-days, whether it is with a camera, tablet or phone. And it doesn’t matter what the subject matter is, in the photo, there is always a focal point. Using myself as an example, here for a minute, when I take a photo the subject is always in the center of the photo. And there is a reason for that. I want whoever sees the photo to concentrate on the reason I took the photo in the first place.

As a Christian my focal point should be God…but it is tough at times.

What-is-Salvation

Is it even possible in this day and age to actually have God be the focal point of our lives?

I mean really…we have so many distractions to keep our mind and our body occupied. There are things such as yard maintenance, school, work, raising the kids, the bills, our spouses’ needs, any sports activity, television, books, music and the stressors that go with them. It’s a wonder that we have time to breathe.

On the outside looking in I see a lot of people who most definitely place sports first in their life. Instead of ensuring the kids are in church they will ensure that they never miss a game. My observation folks…not saying there is anything wrong with sports and going to the games. For me, with having so many friends who have lost their children over the last five years, I would rather ensure my children have a relationship with God than a homerun, touchdown or goal.

Many of us wake up, drink some coffee and it’s off to work with no thought of prayer much less reading a few verses from scripture. Then when we get home it’s dinner, shower and off to bed. If you have children you must spend time with them. Time with your spouse is a must if you are married. See it can be tough to fit God in.

Then there are the things we self-medicate our hurt with like overeating, drugs, alcohol, sex and watching pornography. What if the self-medication could go away?

I have a challenge for you my dear friends….

Spend fifteen minutes with God. I don’t care what part of the day you do that in…just do it. Then increase that time to twenty minutes the next week and then thirty minutes the next. It does not have to be all at the same time. I divide mine up. I spend time with God in the morning, lunch and before bed while praying throughout the day. What I have found is that the more time I spend with God the time I want to spend with Him.

Are there days where it is tough? Heck yeah! When I have a few days in a row that go south I really do not want to talk to God. But those are the days that I need to the most. Those are the days where I might only spend the fifteen minutes instead of the thirty.

But what I have found is that by placing Him first in the morning my days do go better. I sleep better at night after asking God to clear my mind and thanking Him for the day and for the events of the day whether good or bad.

God can be the focal point but it is a daily chose to have Him there. Make that choice dear friend. Take the challenge and then let me know how it works for you. Did the need to self-medicate the hurt dissipate? Did healing take place as you sought Him? Did forgiveness take place? Did your outlook on life become clearer as you focus on Him?