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September 12, 2018 / Wednesday Chat with Bill

Little Magpie: Bill - Thanks. He is helping to drive there. Swan/Bill - How do you recognize the attacks??

Bill: Little Magpie: Great question. John 8:44 says Satan is the father of lies. The attacks always come in the form of lies. They are usually mixed with some truth since the best way to deceive people is to tell them a little truth and then cap it off with a lie. We see the process play out in Matthew 4 where Jesus was tempted by the devil. Recognizing the attacks means being able to discern when we are being confronted with lies. To do that we have to be well versed in the Bible and "up to date" in verbally renouncing what is false and affirming what is true.

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September 12, 2018 / Wednesday Chat with Bill

Swan: Hi Bill, thanks for the birthday wish, I had a good day.

Bill: Swan: Glad to hear. With as much as you invest in the lives of others, I am glad you had a satisfying day.

Swan: Bill - My kids are great and really try to show me love and appreciation, both say I always went out of my way to make their birthdays special, so they just want to return that for me. I will be honest; there is always a part of me that is wishing for contact from my husband, even a little note, but reality it doesn't happen. I don't allow that desire to ruin my fun; I do believe that no matter how hardened his heart is, I have to at least cross his mind. I know there are some that get all freaked out at getting older, I just accept it and consider it another year for God's blessings. Although I also started saying I was 60 a few months back, so not really having to get used to it.

Bill: Swan: I know I have asked something similar in the past, but how did you get to this place where you are able to acknowledge what you wish would happen without getting off track in your growth or ability to enjoy what is happening? So many women seem to struggle with this so any insight you have is appreciated.

Swan: Bill - I guess my husband's midlife crisis and all that came with it created such brokenness for me that I smacked the bottom so hard and bounced off of it a few times. At first I fell apart, could barely function and even found myself plotting to control what was happening. Due to a violent outburst and my fear of it and not wanting to risk personal attack, I left our home and my son insisted I come stay with them a few days. My husband and I still did things together, but it was always horrible and his phone buzzed constantly with calls from the other woman. He would say it was work and excuse himself, but I knew (work never called that much in 30 years). I hadn't been going to church, in fact was even doubting God being real. How could a loving God allow some of the abuses I had dealt with my childhood, I believed, I went to church, I prayed and the abuse still happened. And then with what was happening with my husband, the hell was happening all over. My grandson who was only four at the time, asked me to go to Sunday school with him, without even thinking about it, I agreed. Sitting there in the church next to my daughter in law I suddenly felt a peace and that peace happened for me each week as I continued to attend church when them. I spent most of my life as being in control and pretty unbending in that. I learned that early because the more I could control the less shock and risk of hurt there was. My husband was one of the few people I allowed inside my protected inner circle, I kept people at a distance. I was at the mall one night, found myself in the book store and standing in front of Jim's book, I bought it, read it and then did research and found this website. At first I was ok with the privacy of being able to still be unknown, but soon began opening up and making dear friends. I got more involved with church, a Bible study group, reading and studying the Bible and learning how to let go, which was a struggle for me, but the more I let go of and gave over to God the more peace I found.

Bill: Swan: It sounds like finding peace became a higher priority than having control. Is that fair to conclude?

Swan: One of the questions I started asking myself when conflict happened was who is it more important to and if the answer was me, and then I would ask what is the highest price I am willing to pay to get it. If the answer was the other person, I just decided to let them have it since it is more important to them and then depending on the answer to how high a price, I still often find myself just letting it go and letting them have it. Now there are times when I fight because it is that important to me, however, I find that I don't fight all out war, I am now able to take the other person into consideration and am kinder in my effort to win.

Bill: Swan: well done. It sounds simple when you explain even though I know it is not that easy.

Swan: Bill - Yes peace is much higher of a priority and interestingly far less stressful and healthy for me. The need to constantly be in control is wearing on the body and mind, never able to let your guard down, always suspicious of others and planning to maintain control, way too time consuming.

Bill: Swan: What do you think people need to do so they can value peace over a sense of control?

Swan: Bill - Trust God and believe He will never allow anything more than we can handle and He will be right there beside us for those things we cannot handle. When strife is happening in my life and I find myself moving into panic mode, I have been able to stop and pray, not for the event to be taken away but for God to show me what I am to learn from this trial. I also remind myself of Paul and the thorn in his side. These things happening do not mean that God doesn't love us, they don't mean that God has abandoned us, but often more that there is something for us or someone who will witness how we behave to learn. I spent years learning and even teaching Covey's materials in my job for the Marine Corps and just never could really do the "be proactive" part for myself until I add God to my process.

Bill: Swan: Again, well done. I hope you keep sharing your journey with lots of people. Your story confirms my conviction that there are simple steps we can take when life is in turmoil that calm our hearts and keep us moving forward in this broken and imperfect world. Thanks for being in the race!

Swan: Bill - Believing in someone bigger than myself and depending on His will for my life has made a big difference for me.

Bill: Swan: of course, getting a true view of God that penetrates the heart is the key to remaining calm in the storm. It seems that one of the big struggles of mankind is getting the heart to believe what the mind knows is true!

Little Magpie: Swan - Happy Belated Birthday!! I hope it was a nice one

Little Magpie: Bill - Hello

Bill: Hello Little Magpie

Swan: Bill - I have to credit men and women of God who were put in my path that helped me get to this point. Seeing how those as yourself have also overcome adversity and abuse reminds me that healing is possible. That was another thing that gave me so much peace, being able to forgive my stepfather and mother, even my father. My step father was the mental and physical abuser, but my mother didn't stop it and I hated her for that. My father threw my mother, my brother and myself away so he could marry his fifth wife and never attempted to be a part of our life, he honestly believed if he had no contact with us he didn't have to pay the court ordered child support and resented when that wasn't the case. When I was an adult I found him and we had a limited relationship until he passed away. I finally just had to accept that he was a selfish man, it had nothing to do with me and I was not responsible for his choices. My mother didn't not do anything to stop the abuse because she agreed with it, but I believe she didn't know how to stop it and she just never had a proper male role in her life. Her father died when she was only months old and my grandmother never remarried. She was only 14 years old when she married my father and after that she married the next man that gave her any attention and it was a couple years before the abuse began, my step father started drinking at that point and became a different person. I have no why for his abuse, but have learned that my holding on to unforgiveness towards him hurt me way more than it would even affect him, so I had to let it go for my own sanity.

Swan: Hi Little Magpie. Thanks I had a great birthday

Bill: Swan: Awesome. I believe bitterness and unforgiveness is the main focus of the spiritual battle on earth. Satan knows the gospel is all about forgiveness so he seeks to make us bitter so we won't trust Christ for our salvation or the Holy Spirit for our journey. Those who find the willingness to forgive even the most heinous acts discover an almost unbelievable freedom.

Little Magpie: All - H is traveling in your general direction. Please pray for safe travels. We still haven't heard what they will do with our car. They are going over it again in a "deep dive" to get more accurate information. Praying that we are blessed with the decision whichever way it goes.

Swan: Bill - There are times when thoughts start and I know they are of Satan, it is times like that I will put on praise music, get out my Bible and just open it and start reading. In those times when I cannot do that to protect my mind from the whisperings of the enemy, I can say silent prayers. It took me a little time to get to where I recognized those whisperings, but I have gotten better at realizing it quickly and giving it to God to defend.

Bill: Little Magpie: I will be praying for H and for provision on your car.

Bill: Swan: I think we all need reminded on a weekly basis of the importance of recognizing the attacks and standing against them.

Little Magpie: Bill - Thanks. He is helping to drive there. Swan/Bill - How do you recognize the attacks??

Swan: Bill - My mother in law was a hard person and she was primarily emotionally and mentally abusive to her children, when I still lived in Missouri I would visit with my oldest sister in law, who had become very bitter towards her mother for the abuse and her father for doing nothing about it. We had many talks and she finally started seeing how holding on to that anger was more harmful for her (especially since her parents were both dead). It took about a year and a half, but she asked me one visit to take her to the cemetery, when we got there I went with her and placed flowers on the site, then went for a walk leaving her there alone for almost an hour, when I got back she was in tears and told me she was finally able to forgive and it felt so freeing. Even now years later, she says it changed her life and outlook being able to just let go of all that hurt.

Swan: Little Magpie - praying for your husband and the issue with your car.

Bill: Little Magpie: Great question. John 8:44 says Satan is the father of lies. The attacks always come in the form of lies. They are usually mixed with some truth since the best way to deceive people is to tell them a little truth and then cap it off with a lie. We see the process play out in Matthew 4 where Jesus was tempted by the devil. Recognizing the attacks means being able to discern when we are being confronted with lies. To do that we have to be well versed in the Bible and "up to date" in verbally renouncing what is false and affirming what is true.

Swan: Little Magpie - for me one of the things I notice is when anger or negative thoughts start popping into my mind. Example: at work one of our supervisors is prone to anger outbursts and has done so in front of customers a few times. We have customer surveys that we ask the customer to go on line and do about their experience. These are anonymous and one day the thought popped into my head that I could take a receipt left by a customer (they often toss them in the trash as they leave) and fill it out commenting on the supervisors outburst. Yes, it could create trouble for the supervisor, would they deserve it, probably. Would it change anything, maybe? But it would be a negative plot and would not be a godly thing for me to do. I immediately rebuked that thought and then sent up a little prayer for the supervisor and whatever is going on in their live that makes them behave that way.

Bill: All: I need to head out. "See you" next week.

Swan: Night Bill

Little Magpie: Bill - Have a blessed week and Thank You

Little Magpie: Swan - Thank you! You have a blessed rest of the week too

Swan: Little Magpie - Thanks, see you next week.

Little Magpie: Nite

 

Little Magpie: Bill - Thanks. He is helping to drive there. Swan/Bill - How do you recognize the attacks??

Bill: Little Magpie: Great question. John 8:44 says Satan is the father of lies. The attacks always come in the form of lies. They are usually mixed with some truth since the best way to deceive people is to tell them a little truth and then cap it off with a lie. We see the process play out in Matthew 4 where Jesus was tempted by the devil. Recognizing the attacks means being able to discern when we are being confronted with lies. To do that we have to be well versed in the Bible and "up to date" in verbally renouncing what is false and affirming what is true.

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