Don’t Cause Your Brother, or Another to Stumble

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It’s not uncommon for me to get more than one message in a day. When I Pastored my churches I often had more messages lined up than I could give at one time! This one is so timely and important always. Being a female it always kind of bugs me that the Bible more often speaks lessons in the male personna rather than the female, but that is not what this is about.

As created people, for some reason we tend to love to pass some sort of judgement upon another. I am sure that is not what God intended for us when we were created. We are challenged daily to operate out of our higher God created self rather than our ego. The ego LOVES to point fingers, doesn’t it? Since I am on a roll here with brotherly, sisterly love and our “oneness“, another message came to mind. It’s about causing another to stumble. Meaning setting someone else up to fail in some way so they can be judged.

Oh how the ego loves this! Let’s check out and see if so and so will mess up so we can be high and superior. Let’s watch him/her FAIL. Oh my goodness. This saddens me more than most other things because it is not open hatred it is so called “justified deceitful hatred.” In the Bible, book of Romans chapter 13, Paul talks about not passing judgement on our brother and to not set up or put up a stumbling block in his way. This is simple to figure out. Don’t stick something in front of someone just to test them to see if they will fall for it and fail. Then they can be judged or punished in some way?

Let me give you an example from my life:

Before I was married I dated a so called “Christian man” who said he had become more than very fond of me. Yet, I always felt like I was on trial. Oh, he did some very nice things for me, kind of under the guise of testing me. We had a serious discussion about addictions one night over dinner. I’ve never had the usual up front well known addictions. Mine tend to be strange. Like one time I got real addicted to Hostess Cupcakes. It was after my son was murdered and I felt like nothing on earth could comfort me anyway. Yet, there I was often sitting in the parking lot of a local grocery store stuffing Hostess Cupcakes in my face and crying my brains out. Was not long before things started to not fit me right. I caught myself and decided to knock it off. I lost weight, got into my usual jeans again and that was that. I had told this story to my new “friend“, (and I say that loosely). He was a recovering alcoholic and supposedly had not had a drink in quite awhile.

Soon, my birthday came up and he invited me to have a little party in a beautiful setting and play in the snow. It was lovely. When it came to the time to go inside from the cold a table was set up before me for my birthday. One “gift” was a computer printed photo of us together just cut out of computer paper and the other was a pyramid of Hostess Cupcakes set up to look like a tiered birthday cake. They were all still in the wrappers and honestly it reminded me more of the shape of a wedding cake. On the top was one that was open and had a lit candle right in the middle. Now, this might seem kind of cute at first, right?

He asked me to go ahead, blow out the candle and have one! So, not wanting to be rude, I made my wish, blew out the candle and ate my Hostess Cupcake with gratitude. I asked him if he was going to have one and he said no. I thought that was strange. After I was done, he said, “Have another one!” Can you see where this is going? He was testing me to see if I was going to be addicted to the cupcakes and keep trying to eat them! How absurd it sounds now! My “No thank-you,” was met with “Are you sure?”

Then came the other fun part. He pointed out the computer printed copy of the photo of us and asked how I liked my birthday present. I guess if he was in poverty, and honest, it might have been touching. He was only trying to get a reaction out of me, or some sort of disapproval. I told him it was sweet. As I look back, I realize the entire time I was being “tested“. He was always trying to see if I was “marrying material“. Actually, I don’t think he was marrying material for me!

I’ve often had discussions with others as to whether God “tests” us to see if we will be tempted to go for something and fail. I want to assure you right now, God does NOT do this to His created children! Seems to me the only tester and tempter was Satan in the Biblical story, so how could it be Godly? Let me give you some blessed assurance here. God never sets up His children for failure and then judge them. It is not His nature or character. Humans test each other, set up stumbling blocks and then judge and point fingers. Even worse, they punish. Believe me, this is not wisdom and it is not Godly either.

Since we live in a universe of reaping what we sow, would you want to be the one to test someone just to see them fall on their face, get angry, be hurt, or punished? I know I wouldn’t want that. But we do reap what we sow. I trust in that universal law of lovely Karma. Good ole’ Karma. We always know when she’s been around because it often feels like a slap in the face. Actually it’s a lesson to be learned.

Before you have to learn this lesson, let me spare you. Don’t set up your brother, or anyone, to stumble! Do NOT test another human being with the intent to see if you will have to punish or judge them! You might end up on the wrong side of the Karmic wheel and it won’t feel very good.

I always loved the song “Light of the World”.

“Light of the world shine on me, love is the answer. 

Shine on us all, let us see, love is the answer…” 

I hope this message is relevant. I know to many it could be. Tripping someone up is not a loving thing to do. Not in any situation. Putting someone to the test to see if they are worthy just might cause YOU to be the one who is unworthy someday when you stand in the Light of God. Don’t do it.

Loving you from here,

Dr Rev Jenine Marie Howry

Trust, and the Truth Will Reveal Itself

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As I see it, there are two kinds of truth. There is truth with a capital “T” meaning higher or divine truth. Then there is truth as in the opposite of a lie. The statement in my title is about truth with a small “t” or the opposite of a lie. Lying, deception, setting up things as if they are truth, all seem to be a harsh part of human reality. But who are we kidding here? Nothing is ever gone unseen, especially by what or Who is unseen.

I believe it was Thomas in the Bible who was told by Jesus, “Blessed is he who has not seen and yet still believes.” Jesus was talking about mystical things or divine Truth. Yet, His statement is still as profound about the opposite of a lie. Sometimes we see things and think we know what is true. Sometimes we don’t see things, and yet, there is a gut hunch as to what is true or not. Gut hunches are interesting. Not many know or understand that we are spoken to through our gut, or stomach. In fact, the stomach has neurotransmitters just like our brains do.

I love gut instinct or intuition because it gives me a hunch to go and investigate more. Over the years I have come to trust that intuition and the investigation together. When a lie presents itself I am reminded of what Naomi spoke to Ruth in the Book of Ruth in the Bible. She said, “Wait, my daughter, until you find out what happens.” What she meant was, if we wait on the truth it will reveal itself. There is a real reason for this. It’s because the truth is stronger than a lie. Jesus proved this to us when He was questioned concerning his actions and His identity before He went to the cross. Jesus said nothing. He kept silent. One reason, is the truth needs no defense. The other, is He knew the truth would reveal itself eventually.

You see, nothing, and I mean NOTHING, gets past God. Eventually we all know what is a lie and what is the truth. I like to think I have learned from the best of the best. When I question a situation of any kind I like to go silent. Or if my honest actions are questioned in any way, I also like to go silent.

This happened to me at one time in a work environment. I was brought before my higher management because my immediate manager was upset that I had to leave my desk and run to the restroom quite a bit. I also had to eat at my desk, which was piled with work every single day. You see, I was pregnant and in the earlier stages. My manager also had a knack for piling more work on me than I really should have. She was filing her nails and making personal phone calls on the job. She sat right behind me. I had already had a miscarriage from the stress she caused me, among other things. So, there I was, before the elite, just like Jesus was. I was being accused of doing things contrary to my job description. I guess being pregnant really was not so acceptable in the workplace back in those days. Laws have been created to protect pregnant women and their jobs.

I was always a good employee. I never complained and even worked at home when I had more than I could bear at work. I put in more hours than anyone I had knowledge of, and yet there I was, on “trial” for having to “pee” more often? Sounds crazy even now. Yet it was serious. I was at risk of losing my job over my pregnant state and new needs in order to function. I did defend myself. I told the truth about my manager right in front of her and the vice presidents of the place I worked, but it did no good. What did I do? I stopped talking and I went silent. I backed out of the office and out of their lives.

In about 3 months I received a phone call. The accusing manager was fired because they began to watch her and discovered all I had stated about her was the truth. I was not offered my job back, nor did I want it. What I did receive was higher than anything money could have bought. I learned the lesson Jesus and Naomi gave. “Trust, and the truth will reveal itself. ” 

As I write this, I am trusting. Aside from this message, I am being silent in a situation. Honestly, I do not understand people at the moment. Maybe it’s because I really don’t understand that so many don’t even realize just WHO is watching them. Maybe some have become hard in their hearts. Maybe some have just plain not cared about anyone but themselves. All could be possible. Still, I believe in the ability for humans to have compassion. Still, I believe in the truth, both the opposite of a lie and the higher Truth.

Situations can come and go, but honesty, integrity, love, and truth are forever. The lessons we learn from the moments we live are more valuable than anything anyone could ever say about us or accuse us of. Oh people will always lie. We lie to ourselves every day of our lives. It’s the purposeful deceit and lies that I have a hard time understanding.

There is another account concerning Jesus in the Bible that I have always loved. There will be a day when we shall see Him face to face, and in an instant we shall be like Him. In the face of the most influential being in all of history, nothing, and I mean, nothing, can ever be hidden. All is revealed. Just like that moment we stand in the face of the higher Truth. Whether we think so or not, ALL is revealed right at this moment. We were created with God inside of our DNA. He is inside of us. How could He not know the truth about us?

Silent from here,

Dr Rev Jenine Marie Howry, PhD

Avoiding Gossip and Drama

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I kid you not, I have spent a lifetime working at avoiding various types of gossip and drama. Either it has been in the workplace, friendships, or extended family issues. This is putting aside genuine caring for one another. What I am speaking of is needless, painful, discord, that only feeds negativity and hurtfulness toward others. I want to be honest and open here. I have been absolutely HATED because I don’t agree with being involved with drama and discord. Anyone can plainly see, when people are involved in those kind of things, hatred can only spawn from them. It takes me to the point where I struggle to forgive and not to spawn my own hatred from the circumstances.

I don’t like hearing it. I don’t like people trying to draw me into it. I don’t like what it does to relationships that otherwise would be loving and connected ones. I do like discovering things about people, understanding their struggles, and staying in the loop when it comes to others issues. It’s part of being a minister and I also learn from them. Sometimes I am just plain curious. But, that does not mean I desire to take anyone’s “stuff” to the next level and spread it around like peanut butter on a ritz cracker.

Recently I found myself seeking God on issues that should not be happening. I can’t stop them, I can’t control them, and I can’t even come to an understanding about them. The one thing I know I can do is distance myself from the issues. There is something that really baffles me though. Why on earth would anyone want to create such havok in their lives and the lives of others? I am not fond of witnessing greed, manipulation, lies, control, and other madness that should not exist in the lives of those who are supposed to love one another.

I have some clear cut examples of my own where gossip about me has caused whole families of people to absolutely hate my guts. That is the only way I can describe it. The thing is, I never really understood what it was I did to cause it. I really believe that some people just have to generate it to feel alive. It’s almost like when a person cuts themselves because they want to feel something; anything. I believe discord spreaders and drama creators do it because they are addicted to the emotions that the drama creates for them. Otherwise their lives appear to them too boring to be a part of.

I know this is not the usual touchy feely kind of blog post I might usually have but its honest and straightforward. God help us all when I finally learned to have a voice! It created a whole other crop of issues for me. No longer was I someone that others could use as their drama subject and get away with it for long.

So how do we end it or keep it from happening? Well, we can’t’ control others nor their emotional drama high and addictions, so we are helpless to change them. All we can do is turn them over to God, and the Universal powers that be, then just RUN in the other direction! It is alright to not want to be a part of what violates your personal moral standards or beliefs. It is also alright to back away from those who do violate them. Yes, you might get the cold shoulder, a bit of hatred spewed out, or just some gossip spread about you. If you really know yourself and tap into the power of God daily this won’t be an issue for you. I love the saying, “Other people’s thoughts about me are none of my business.” I don’t know who originally said that but I think it is very profound and empowering.

Since we are all ONE in the sight of God through Christ, what is done to others we also do to ourselves. So, keep this one in mind the next time you are tempted to be involved with discord, drama, or gossip. Sometimes they all go hand in hand. The Universal law of reaping what you sow will not bypass you. Stay uninvolved and only hear from a distance with no emotional response. After all, it is the emotional high that drama queens feed on. I believe it is an illness. I truly do. So pray for them, forgive them, and then go on about your own life. You will reap the rewards of staying in integrity when others are taking a spin in the old karmic wheel.

Loving you from here,

Dr Rev Jenine Marie Howry

 

Scapegoat Mentality

pexels-photo-1054422.jpegBack in Biblical times there was a sacrificial animal called the “scapegoat”. When the Levite priests did ceremony to cleanse the people of sins, the sins were symbolically placed into the animal and then it was sent out into the wilderness. It ran off carrying the sins of the people with it.

In modern days, the scapegoat is a person who ends up taking the punishment for the wrongdoings or the sins of others. This hardly seems fair, but it happens all of the time, especially in families. One would think this would be the last place this would happen but it does, and usually behind closed doors. It also happens in places of business, in schools, and other places. I believe I have even watched this happen online as well.

Wherever people gather, there is a tendency to be someone around who has to press down others in order to feel better about themselves. The pressed down one is usually the lonely one who bears the pain that has been placed upon them. It’s a sad situation, and very heartbreaking.

If we were to look at humanity as one that we need to find balance within, this push and shove really does not make a lot of sense. There is only an illusion of one who gets to be the winner of the game and the one who is pressed down. Truthfully, in an unbalanced situation like this, neither of them win.

Fear, creates scapegoats. Someone begins to think or believe they are powerful and out of their fear that they are not, they need someone to press down to relieve that fear. The hard thing is nothing is ever truly relieved so the actions might keep going on. Usually the ones who are the most empathetic are the ones who end up being walked upon. They find themselves pushed down in the pecking order at their jobs. They have no voice because their own fear causes them to stop speaking up for themselves.

When Jesus went to the cross, He took upon Himself the punishment of everyone’s sin and then He left this world carrying our burdens. This grace is meant to release us from the sting of sin and death. We have no bondage in the eyes of God and there is none who is greater than the other.

Do you ever find yourself wishing that people would just see the value in themselves so they don’t feel the need to emotionally, physically, or mentally batter others to try to help them create the illusion they are greater? I pray for this revelation for people all of the time. Every time I hear a broken heart, feel one, or know of one, I know that somewhere out there is a person who is using that brokenness for their freedom. It really should not be so.

If we find ourselves being pressed down or taken advantage of, maybe it is time to create balance and speak the truth and walk away from those who would have them be their scapegoat. There is no one on earth that deserves to take a beating for someone else’s attempt at finding some form of power. Jesus took that beating and we are all free. We don’t need to have faith in the truth to make it true but it does help to have it. It’s still true none the less. It’s history.

I had to dig deep for this one because the idea of the scapegoat is more than someone being a bully over someone else. It is a condition where shame and deep feelings of inadequacy happen over periods of time. I’ve witnessed someone taking a beating for someone else. It’s almost just as painful to be the witness.

Tonight I have a deep sadness in my spirit as I think of those I have known who have been stuck taking the rap for others. They have been beaten down, locked up, emotionally broken, spiritually stricken and soulfully scarred. I can close my eyes and almost feel the painfulness of this type of condition.

If only, if only, there can be a balancing of humanity that makes this impossible to ever happen. It was meant to create the needed balance when Jesus died on the cross. We were meant to find ourselves in the bonds of oneness, in a holy union, sharing the power of the blood He shed on the cross for us all.

Can we ever find that place Jesus prayed for us to find? Can we balance the human scales in life and see one another as equal and not as someone we must be on top of, win over, press down, or beat at the race?

This blog post has a bit of a sadness to it. I apologize for that reality. I can’t help but close my eyes, though, and dream of what it would be like if everyone would just understand. We never make it anywhere without one another. Being on the top of others is only an illusion and eventually that prideful heart will have to fall. So, the beater never prospers and the one who presses down never really hits the top before they fall to the pit.

It’s the one’s who have taken the beating who will arise. It might not be today, or even tomorrow, but it will happen. When it does, their light will shine as brightly as the morning sunshine. At that moment they will realize it has all been an illusion for them as well and that God has always cupped His hands, holding them in place for the moment they understand just how beautiful they have always been.

Loving you from here

Dr. Jenine Marie Howry

 

 

Dealing With the “Lack of Maturity” Type Person

11988378_10153670839814255_4027848974804248960_nPsychologists tell us about the type A, type B person or personality. I tend to agree that there are people who are either on one side of the spectrum or the other. We don’t always hear about what I call “the lack of maturity” type person. This is putting aside that all of us have those moments of acting out and not being as “grown up” as we should.

Yet, there are those who tend to exude that lack of mature reasoning and almost seem stuck in a childhood type of mentality. I remember when my kids were growing up, there was the bully on the playground who always had to somehow “kick someone’s behind”,  ah hem, putting it in a more mild form. Even as I was growing up I could never understand that mentality. More surprising there are adults who never got past that mentality and draw that type of drama into others lives like a boat anchor that sinks just about everyone around them.

Lately, and actually over the last several years, my life has been affected by that type of person. Not by choice, but I guess you could say, by proxy. It does not feel good. I like to drive my life ahead, leaving that which is behind to be my past, just like the Bible and God says to do. Sometimes its inevitable though. That type of person gets dragged into our lives and we find ourselves fighting tooth and nail to avoid the “reap what you sow” blast that comes from them just because they are energetically and spiritually connected.

Over the last few weeks my experience came to a head though. I could NOT take any more. The “lack of maturity” person had to be removed or I had to remove myself. Sometimes it is a matter of principle and sometimes it is a matter of brokenness. I found myself broken because I did not take action sooner. The last thing I have ever needed was a shattered life again. So I had to take matters into my own hands and request that person to exit, stage left. I’ve never been a hateful person but I found myself having those feelings and it sure did not feel good. You know, God hates. He hates sin. He hates divorce. He hates adultery, and He hates rebellion and pride. So I know to occasionally have those feelings is normal, but not to act on them because vengeance belongs to the Lord, not to me.

I have grown to learn to guard my gate as to whom I allow in to my life and who I do not. I have my own set of values and it is perfectly fine to enforce them because the quality of my life is important. We are only given one to live and I want mine to be the best it can ever be. This is the bottom line here. Some people just don’t care if they hurt or harm us. They don’t care if they keep us waiting, or if they take what is not theirs to take. They don’t care if they break someone’s heart or even if they stomp on it after it is broken. That is the reality of this world.

There is another reality though. God gave us family and I know I have a lot of God given family! I was reminded by someone dear to me that I am one million strong with people who are behind me 110%! Wow, that truth takes care of so much of the hurt caused by the lack of maturity type people!

I want to encourage you today and stand your ground and not allow yourself to be affected by those who refuse to grow up. Leave them outside your gate and don’t allow their influence to infiltrate your life. You deserve the best and you certainly don’t deserve to live with a broken heart due to the mindless actions of others. Keep in mind to work toward forgiveness. This does not mean allow them back in! This means forgive so you can be forgiven by God and also so that your heart can be free! Then don’t, I repeat, don’t allow them back in again! People don’t just change and even when they do it takes a long time.

Keeping the lack of maturity people outside the sheep’s gate. It will give you peace; the kind that God wants you to have.

Pastor Jenine Marie Howry

Jenine Marie Coaching and Ministries

Understanding Workplace or Business Abuse

r1113127_13550802I’ve had to think a long time before I felt ready to write this one. Workplace abuse happens quite often and it can be anywhere from subtle to extreme. Before we go any further on this, lets define what abuse is. Basically abuse is mistreatment or misuse of a person, in this case employee or even business partner. Abuse most of the time is about control. Someone feels like their life is out of control and so to feel they have order they control others. Sometimes abuse has to do with envy or jealousy. The abuser feels like they are less than or feels another might not deserve the accolades they are receiving from others. It can be jealously of success. For instance one business partner is making more progress than the other for a company.

Regardless of the reason, any abuse or mistreatment makes life miserable for those who are in the receiving side. Abuse can occur from one person in management or it can occur in a a group form  called “mobbing”. The abuser says and does things to get others on their “side” and tricks them into actively participating in the abuse. Usually the abuser poses as the victim in order to gain some form of sympathy so others will side with them.

An Example from My Personal Files

A long time ago I worked for a commercial bank. I was pressured by my manager, and overloaded with work. She made personal phone calls and filed her nails at the desk behind me. To add to the pressure I became pregnant with my second child. Soon I had to take more frequent bathroom breaks and sometimes eat crackers during the day to settle my stomach. I had stacks and stacks of files on my desk daily. I felt overwhelmed much of the time. It was not long before I was called in and placed on 3 months probation for not keeping up with my work. During the probation meeting I broke apart at the pressure of my manager. Although I was straight forward about her lazy management skills, I ended up leaving due to the pressure. I lost my medical insurance, which I desperately needed, and felt horrible my whole pregnancy.

My manager used “mobbing” in order to control the situation for herself. Long before the probation meeting she had been going to upper management complaining about me about every little detail. Her complaints were completely unwarranted. I also happened to know her personally outside of work and she did not agree with some of my personal choices. I guess she decided to teach me a lesson and make life hard on me. The strange thing, is I could “feel” this happening before it did happen. Strange looks and being shunned by those above me began to happen. Then there were comments made to me that seemed out of context. I was being primed for abuse and eventually to leave my job.

According to the Workplace Bullying Institute in 2014, 27% of those surveyed nationally felt they were bullied or abused at work. Keep in mind that this is a figure regarding bullying. There are many types of abuse such as sexual discrimination, sexual or verbal harassment, mobbing, discrediting through gossip or undermining. These are just a few to make a point. This is a very serious thing. Many people come out from workplace abuse with a form of Post Traumatic Stress Disorder, loss of wages, loss of insurance, loss of integrity, and even sometimes lose their lives because of the pressure.

So What Do You Do?

  1. Tell someone! With any type of abuse people feel too ashamed to talk about it. Telling someone takes courage but once it is done there is a great deal of relief. Talk to a counselor, the Labor Board, or an organization like Workplace Bullying Institute. Talk to a good friend and gain others who are sympathetic to your side.
  2.  Confront! Allow authorities to do an intervention with yourself and your management. With some employers this can be a labor union or you can even find a labor attorney or advocate.
  3.  Contribute. Be the person that others can come to and make others aware of abuse in the workplace or in business. We are all stronger when we band together.
  4. Take good care of yourself! Practice a lot of self care doing things that are healthy for you. You can train for another job. Do things that create happiness in your life. Surround yourself with the right kind of friends who help you move on and not keep you stuck in the post traumatic stress.
  5. Pray. Stretch your faith toward better days ahead.

Ask yourself. Do you want to be a part of a company that treats you poorly or won’t defend you when you have a problem? Do you want to be a part of a business where you are subjected to unwarranted pressure, gossip, control, manipulation, or harsh behavior?

Life is too precious to allow any part of it be subjected to those who treat you bad regardless to the reason they might have. It is their job to change their tactics. It is your job to defend your own well being and those around you!

Pursue peace,

Pastor Jenine Marie Howry

800-421-1765

 

Beyond the Bathroom Door

silence-001Please bear with me while I tell this story to the end. I know, I know; I will get to the point! Some stories are worth telling though, and I think this one has some wisdom!

When I was in 8th grade I had transferred to a new school. Life changes happen. For the most part it was a pretty good experience. I was around family members at school, and had some old friends I got to reacquaint with. It was a hard era to be in school though. The process of racial integration had begun and there was a lot of unrest between students and parents. The students were being bused to schools that were further from home in order to compensate for the previous era of segregation. We all had to get used to changes.

I was always a quiet soft spoken person back then and I was just kind of coming out of my shell a bit. Life was pretty good in school that year, accept for one issue. For some reason a girl took a disliking to me. I was not completely sure why because I never really talked to her and I don’t think we had any classes together. I’m not sure if it was fueled by the racial tensions or not. ( I am thinking probably so). All I knew was that she suddenly just hated me. Along with my quiet demeanor was a very non violent person inside of me. I just don’t believe in attacking others. This little lady was different though. She was mouthy, and sure did not hold back the comments regarding what she wanted to “do to my face”.

Every single day it was the same. I would see her in the hall and she would say something cruel to me and talk about what she was going to do to me. Having lockers close by caused us to see one another a few times a day, so several times a day she got her comments in before the next class. I said absolutely nothing to her, not ever. I just did my business and then walked away. This made her even more aggressive for some reason and her threats became more intense. So, I began to do everything I could to avoid her. I seriously started to believe there would be bloodshed and yet I had no idea why. Fear crept into my existence and the more intense she became, the more I worked harder to avoid her. I did not want to fight this girl. I did not want to fight anyone, but for some reason she felt she needed a way to express her anger and trying to get me angry was her goal.

I started to adopt the practice of hiding in the bathroom while she did her locker business and did not come out until I was sure she was done and gone. All I wanted was peace, and to not have my face torn off! She was a little thing, much smaller than I was, but she always seemed to have a group with her. I mean, what fun is it to tear someone’s face off if you have no one watching, right?

Then one day she caught on to me and went into the bathroom while I was in there. She was alone this time and so was I . I was washing my hands and getting ready to head to my class. She came up to me with an angry scowl. She was about 4 inches shorter than I was so she had to look up to look me in the eyes. So, I just stood there and looked down at her, keeping my gaze in her eyes and my facial expression unchanged. A lot of thoughts raced through my head. I was preparing to have to defend myself because I sure did not want to stand there and have my face torn off, like she said she wanted! So, I waited and just breathed. The next sound I heard was her grumble something under her breath and off she went out the door.  I took a huge sigh of relief! 

Proverbs 15:1 

“A gentle answer turns away wrath,
    but a harsh word stirs up anger.”

My Point?

God honors wisdom. A harsh word would have created chaos in this situation. There is a time for everything under heaven. This time was NOT a time to speak. She never said another word to me again; not ever! I got to stay out of the bathroom before my next class and I never had my face torn off! (Huge sigh of relief here)!

My point here is “Choose your battles wisely sisters”! There is a time to speak and a time to remain silent. Sometimes silence speaks louder than words ever could and wisdom knows “her” place. That is at the throne where God delivers to us His power to be what we need to be at any given moment. I learned a lot from the bathroom that day! The Lord chooses the darnedest places to instruct us on our walk with Him!

These are days when I am finding I have less of a filter, so how do we know when to remain silent and when to speak? It’s kind of a type of strategic wisdom God gives to us when we remain in Him. In the particular situation in the bathroom, silence was the answer. Sometimes wisdom comes to us when we seek “her“. Sometimes we make a mistake and our face gets torn off. Bottom line, we learn with practice and experience. Believe me, you will know when you have made the wrong choice!

With my face in tact,

Pastor Jenine Marie Howry

800-421-1765 for prayer!

** Image credit : Getty Images, Stock Photo

Let the Children Be in Peace

Rev Jenine MarieI think this blog post is going to be a little spewing out. I wanted to write something else because I am trying to keep my series of subjects on my blog aligned with a video subject and something empowering in audio. I’m sure I will work that out but when I have something in my craw there is no stopping my mouth even if it is in type. If you have read my blog at all , you know how I feel about bullying. As I read about cyber attacks on our new president’s son and his wife, I had that sick feeling inside my stomach. I hate that junk.

Honestly, I don’t care if you like them or not. What I do care about is respecting them even when we disagree. I mean, that is what we all personally want, right? I know I want respect. I’m sure our president’s son does not feel good when adults go into attack mode regarding  opinions of his father, the position, or family life. After all, who really knows about the family life of the Trumps? None of us do. Neither here nor there.

Here is my point: leave the kid alone. Doesn’t he have enough weighing on his shoulders at his young age? Let him be a child. Growing up is hard. There are so many emotions to deal with as we mature. Don’t you remember some of yours? I know that I remember some of mine! They become life long lessons that we have to work on later as time goes by.

Here is the bottom line of this post: Bullying whether in person or online is inexcusable. We can’t really stop it because people will be who they are no matter what we say about the subject. I’m sure others are not going to change their mind and be kind just because I have said so. We all have opinions , that’s for sure. My shock is that our president’s son suffered a cyber “put down” by an ADULT. Don’t we think its time we grew up?

Jesus let us all know how He feels about being unkind to the little children. A person is better off just tying themselves to a lump of concrete and throwing themselves over the edge of a bridge.(Basically His words not mine.) I’m not suggesting that, it’s just that Jesus was saying, DON’T MESS WITH THEM! The future of our world, and our next generation depends on their sanity. Do we really want to mess with that? I mean, one day we will all be older and our lives will be in the hands of the ones who we raised up for this generation. Do we want them to be as cruel to us as some have been to them?

I think we should reconsider, be slow to speak, and walk out love the best way we can. I know this comes off as a rant, but what good is being a woman of faith if I can’t express my  disdain over the cruelty of others. Let’s protect the children and give them a chance to grow up loving instead of giving them the worst example of us as an older generation. Iv’e watched bullying going on when my kids were growing up. It is painful to watch. Do we want to create that pain that will some day become anger?

It’s not a wise decision to raise a bunch of angry children who will some day make decisions regarding world peace and the nuclear bomb. Give that a thought for a moment.

Just a rant from the heart,

Pastor Jenine Marie Howry

800-421-1765

Don’t Be a Doormat: Speak Your Truth To Someone

no-bullying-signs-rightJust recently I read another bloggers article about bullying. It is one of a few I have happened to see as of late. Clearly there is a theme going on lately. I’m not sure why this is but some women seem to believe it is powerful to overpower another woman and make them seem “less than”. Before you write this off as complaining, negative, or even petty, consider the people who have taken their own lives because of others unfeeling acts toward them. I wish I could take the time to look up the statistics for you but I don’t want to make this longer than it should be. Please do an online search on the subject if this peaks your interest.

I know what it feels like to be treated disrespectfully by other girls/women. I’ve had the experience in grammar school, middle school, high school, in the work place, and in the ministry.  For a long time I thought something was wrong with me. It took me awhile to come to the conclusion that it was not me who was the one who had something wrong with them. I’ve seen every tactic in the book. There is the “obvious backstab” when someone makes sure they are in a place you can hear or see them and then they will lean over and whisper into someone’s ear while looking right at you. Then with some planting of a few rumors it doubles the affect for sure. There is the obvious bully who will exert their aggression upon someone else in order to intimidate them into giving some sort of power over to the evil of another. Fear is a huge controller. If someone can get you into fear then they have a huge grip on your life. (Please pray against the spirit of fear. You have control of this in Christ Jesus!) We have what I call “the sympathizer” who will go to the person you love the most and try to gain their affections while trying to make you look like a total fool. This one is a sly one because they get you upset at what they do and then tell your loved one, “See, obviously she is out of control, emotionally unstable, ridiculously wrong, or completely petty”. There are more tactics but I think you get the point.

I think one of the more devastating ones for me was when a so called “friend” began to offer prayer requests concerning me in a church  prayer group. By the time I heard about them it was out of control, filled with a lot of partial truths, and out right lies. I walked out when I heard it preached over the pulpit. It took me a long time to get over that one. Please don’t take this as being judgmental or as trying to make others look bad. Someone has to talk about the hard stuff. I’m not trying to foster negativity. I’m trying to be educational, empowering, and hopefully a voice for some good change. Sometimes positive change happens when a tough stand is taken. We need those who are willing to open up the can of worms, and risk exposure of their stuff. Sometimes we can save someone a lot of heartache and sometimes we might even save their life. Since lives are important, then why not open the can of worms and sift through the soil?

When I was having a situation ongoing in grammar school I confided in my 4th grade teacher, Mrs. Hart. (Yes her name was Hart!) I was so distraught about what was going on. I was not sleeping well, was always upset, and was too shy to handle it myself. She looked at me and told me, “Don’t ever put up with something like that. Please come and tell me and I will take care of it”. Then she advised me to not be around that person and group she was playing with. Dang, I loved that woman! “Thank you Mrs. Hart”.

I wish I had the ability to handle it myself but at the time I did not. Mrs. Hart was my go-to person when I needed defense. We need that in our lives! Women, hear me. Please empower one another!

Whatever you do, don’t succumb to being a doormat by allowing others to walk all over you. Please speak your truth. If you can’t do this in a safe way, then find someone who will stand with you, or even many who will. If you see someone being treated unfairly ask first if they need help before stepping in. Not every situation is safe to intervene. Ask God for wisdom as to how to handle things. While you are mulling these things over, don’t ever feel bad for expressing yourself when something or someone is bothering you. It takes courage to swim against difficult waters. Don’t allow the water to overtake you. There are more people who care than you think!

(A huge thank you to those who have recently brought up this subject again. I love your voices and we all deserve to be heard!)

If you are being bullied or messed with by someone. Let me pray for you here:

Dear Lord, I ask for Your divine protection for my sister in need. Please comfort her, and show her how much she is loved. Send her those she can count on, confide in, and will give strength to her. Empower her with Your Holy Spirit and give her the wisdom and courage to handle the situation she finds herself in. Thank You Jesus for loving my sister, Your daughter, and created treasure.

Dear God, I proclaim the name and heart of our Lord Jesus Christ to cast out spirits of fear and intimidation. Dear Jesus, rise up and set a standard for Your people and bring change to the hearts of those who do evil to others. Thank You for loving us! Amen.

Pastor Jenine Marie Howry

“Doormat no more”

Jenine Marie Coaching