Wounds – Christina Faith

wounds

 

 

We often ignore the wounds that we have. We cover up our wounds very well, but we miss the grace of God when we cover our wounds. Our wounds are for healing.

After living with one of my best friends for three years, God reshaped my understanding of God’s ability to divinely orchestrate opportunities for all of us to be formed into His image. Regardless of your past, we all have wounds. Our parents, childhood friends, relatives and/or teachers have all create wounds in our hearts at some point in our lives. We are all destined to hurt another person at some point in our lifetimes. However, it was never God’s intention for us to live wounded and shameful.

The great physician Luke told a story of the good Samaritan in Luke 10. A man was robbed and left for dead by robbers on his way to Jericho. A priest passed him without stopping, a Levite walked past and did nothing, but the Samaritan stopped and helped the man. The Samaritan felt compassion for the man. The man bandaged his wounds and poured oil on them. The Samaritan took care of the man as though he was his family. He knew that the man had been badly injured and was in need of care. The priest and Levite had no compassion on the man. The beaten and wounded man was seen as dirty and contaminated in their cultures. However, the good Samaritan saw a person in need and came to his rescue.

 

If you are like me, then you have A LOT of wounds. I am not one with a wound or two. I have thousands of wounds that I am not even aware of. A physical doctor would get tired of patching up all the wounds in my heart. Once one is healed, another would immediately appear.

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True Friendship – Christina Faith

True friendship is hard to find. Many of us define friendship in various ways. Facebook defines friendship by people who ask to be your friend. Facebook’s easy quick and troll request of friendship has aided in the deterioration of the true importance of relationship. However; Facebook, Twitter and other social media sites have helped forge amazing relationships with people we would have never met.

We often focus on the negative impact of social media relationships. Recently, I’ve been given the opportunity to speak with a lot of people and ask questions regarding my business and brand from amazing people I follow on social media sites. I have been very direct about my purpose regarding the people I build with on social media. I connect because I want to grow in relationship with people. I am concerned about them as a person, I want to grow from my relationship with them and I want them to be encouraged by what I have to offer them.

 

 

In our often cold world, true friendships are hard to come by. There are many people we know, but we wouldn’t classify them as friends. Recently while using FaceTime, I had the opportunity to hear a friend explain our friendship to her 10 year old son. I never met her son, because our friendship started at work a few years ago. She moved to another state, but we kept in touch. She moved back to the state and we started to build our relationship with one another again a few months ago. Her son asked an important question while we were chatting. He said, “Who are you talking to mom?”. “My friend, Christina”, she replied. Somehow the conversation shifted to him asking how I was his mother’s friend. I am sure in his 10 year old mind he thought, “How is she your friend when I have never met her?”. She then began to explain the difference between friends and acquaintances. Her son has a tendency to call kids his best friend after only meeting them once. In his 10 year old mind everyone is his friend. She explained the importance of knowing people versus knowing about them. A conversation with someone does not make them your friend.

In our easy to share society we know about people more than we know them. I was encouraged that she told her son that I was her friend. She’s a woman that I would also call friend. I am concerned with growth for her and she is concerned with mine. She’s not the type of person to only tell me all the great stuff about myself. She’s willing to tell me about my wrongs and mistakes as well.

One of the greatest ways to define a friendship is to ask yourself the question, “If I am wrong will this person tell me about myself?”. A friend is someone who sticks closer than a brother, not someone who simply knows that we exist. A friend is concerned with why we exist and wants to help us fulfill our purpose in this world. True friendships are hard to find. It doesn’t matter where you find friendship, but it does matter how you grow the friendship. Friendships are important water for the garden, because it produces a beautiful harvest we all need for this life and the life to come.

 

Proverbs 27:5-6
Better is open rebuke,
Than love that is concealed.
Faithful are the wounds of a friend,
But deceitful are the kisses of an enemy.

A Relationship Worth Building? – Christina Faith

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Photo Credit: Eternos Indicadores via Compfight cc

 

We all want good relationships. Even those people that are extremely bad at relationships. You know the ones you want to run away from when they come around. I have learned that the people you avoid, that avoid you, or get on your last nerve, turn out to be the greatest asset to your personal growth.

We all have had those moments where we have wanted to run away from people. When I was in seminary, I met a person I truly didn’t care for. I can’t tell you today why I didn’t like her, but I just didn’t. Our dislike of one another ran deep. Our professor asked us to write three names on a paper, two people you wanted to be in a group with and one you did not want to be in group with. Months later we both discovered that we wrote each other’s name down as the person we did not want to be in a group with.

Photo Credit: lomp via Compfight cc

Needless to say, I did not like her and she didn’t like me. We both had a fatal flaw. We judged the book by its cover. Our dislike of one another was purely based on personality. The problem was that neither of us understood how divinely connected we were. God was intentionlly using our location, professor and calling to set us up for a divine connection. This sister that I did not like ended up being the connection to the local church that I have been at for the last seven years. She was the sister that exposed my character issues. She was the sister that planned my wedding. She is also the sister who I now am able to confide in.

Often, we miss what God is doing due to our outward senses. If we would have allowed our personality differences to keep us from learning more about one another, we would have robbed ourselves of a great and growing relationship. The most important relationships are worth working on. I am sure you have someone in your life that you don’t quite care for at this moment, whether it’s a spouse, roommmate, friend, co-worker, client or sibling. I am here to suggest that those relationships that cause you the most pain and suffering are often the relationships that show you where you need help from God.

I was prideful, arrogant, agressive, conceided, and I needed help. I am sure that not all the people who rub you the wrong way will become your friend, but I am sure that God will use every ounce of the relationship to work the fruits of the Spirit in you. The Bible doesn’t say, “If you like a person be kind to them”. Jesus modeled for us our need to love our enemies and love others as ourselves.

We are called to lead with our lives by being light. We can’t be light while allowing our likes and dislikes to be our motivation for developing healthy relationships with others. Today, I encourage you to turn the mirror around from the other person to you. If you are struggling with caring for another, think of all the reasons that you can care for them instead of all the reasons that you dislike them. I promise you it will be well worth it.