Emptying the Ex-Box

Zechariah 7: 9“Thus has the LORD of hosts said, ‘Dispense true justice and practice kindness and compassion each to his brother; 10 and do not oppress the widow or the orphan, the stranger or the poor; and do not devise evil in your hearts against one another.’

Some of are still holding onto the Ex box. The Ex box is anything from our past, our old life that we do not let go of, or give over completely to God. It can be photos, notes, an object and ultimately it can be held tightly in our thoughts. I am pausing from sorting through Jonathan’s box of things to tell you I just threw away a bad memory I gripped tightly. Jonathan had many harsh realities to deal with, and he had some choice words he wrote down on paper about someone who was hurting him. Why keep such a note?

  • Because it feeds my own wounds
  • Because I’m angry
  • Because there has not been satisfactory justice
  • Because it vindicates me

These are the reasons I have held onto this sheet of paper. And even as I read it, I felt my heartache stirred. But, I declared out loud, “THIS DOES NOT HELP ME!” And, in a decisive move I balled it up and tossed the note in the trash.

  • Trust God’s justice
  • Acknowledge that God saw Jonathan’s pain
  • God alone is judge
  • Forgiveness frees me, and offers hope to the wrong doer

What do you have in your box? Is there one thing you can give to God that you desperately want solved, fixed, or don’t understand? Declare out loud the truth over the object and release it. Embrace the far better future God has for us and let go of the Ex.

My prayers are with you!

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Too Much!

Psalm 34:…17The righteous cry, and the LORD hears And delivers them out of all their troubles. 18The LORD is near to the brokenhearted And saves those who are crushed in spirit. 19Many are the afflictions of the righteous, But the LORD delivers him out of them all.…

Some days you wake up and your world is already crumbling. Daniel woke up crying in pain, and it went down from there until everyone was being unpleasant to one another. The explosions inside me were oozing out in sharp words and I’m not sure I want to keep them at bay any more.

Now I sit here in the silence, the train whistling in the distance and I feel as if I am stuck on the tracks. Lord, they do not owe me a thing! Help me to glorify you. I don’t have to keep up appearances, I don’t have to hold it all together. Life on this earth sucks sometimes and I’ve had enough. I want my son to be well, or at the very least, to know what is wrong. Please father, give me the strength to keep pressing forward and not to be mean to my family because I can’t fix what is wrong. Open my heart and mind to your will, not mine! Only in the garden of trusting you completely can I be fully present and pleasant to my family. Amen.

depression devotional faith grief mental illness