Childhood Sexual Abuse: A Prayer to Begin Healing

young gorgeous woman standing behind iron grate
Photo by Andrea Piacquadio on Pexels.com

I know, childhood sexual abuse is not an easy subject to talk about, especially when so many people go to such great lengths to hide it and stuff it away. It’s never hidden as much as anyone thinks it is though. Of course God knows. God knows everything. Children eventually grow up to be adults and they become aware what happened to them was not right. Until then, the issue is usually stuffed somewhere continually adding to soul scarring. Life moves on and people get caught up with whatever it is that is being attended to at the time. There is always something, but deep inside the issue is still brewing.

It’s easy to pass it off because it only happened once, or maybe it will heal with enough love from someone else. Maybe God will heal it? Yet, unless it is discussed and dealt with it never gets healed. This is the truth. God can know but there are others who know. There is the victim and the one who did the person wrong. They know. Usually other family members do as well but don’t want to admit it. It gets shamefully stuffed under some seemingly magic carpet and no one talks about it.

Then as the victim grows up there are signs that come to the surface that everyone wants to point fingers at. Maybe the victim carries too much protective weight, or sometimes their life suddenly seems to be in disarray and no one understands, not even the one abused. Fear keeps it all under a boiling pot and a lid is put on the surface. For the victim it’s always fear of being shamed, people getting angry at them, leaving them, or even worse harming them. For the abuser the fear is always shame as well but with that comes fear of exposure for what they are and the hurt they caused.

I know this sounds hard but the best thing that could ever happen is for the lid to be taken off the boiling pot. Unfortunately it has to be the victim who has to become strong enough to make that move. Yet, it is the best thing that could ever happen. Only the truth sets people free and only the truth can allow things to be healed. Keeping things held tightly will only keep the soul sick for both victim and the abuser. Only soul sickness can cause soul sickness upon someone else.

I want to start the process of healing for you if you are a victim of childhood sexual abuse and offer this prayer. I hope it will give you an opportunity and strength to confront the truth with the one who caused the most damage, the abuser.

Dear Heavenly Father,

Your love and grace endure forever. For all of those reading who have endured sexual abuse as a child, I ask for the courage to be honest with what they have endured. Lead them to still waters with someone who will listen and will have compassion upon them. Father, You have witnessed it all. It will be exposed now or later but it will always be exposed. I also ask for those abused to have courage to safely confront the abuser if this is possible. Victory in all areas of abuse brings the biggest healing that could happen. Forgive the abuser Father. Give that person the ability to face what they have done and to be sorrowful for the harm they have caused. Sexual abuse might happen for a small period of time but the effects can last a lifetime. Father, heal your sons and daughters all the way to the soul level and beyond. Bring peace where there has been no peace. Bring humility where there has been no repentance. Please bring wholeness where healing begins. Surround Your children with love and compassion but I ask that You also bring discipline to the one who has caused more pain then they want to admit to themselves.

We thank you, Father, that you are a caring and miraculous God. Let the healing and the hope begin right now, at this moment. May tears fall and may they water the gardens of those who need Your help and healing touch. We love you, dear God.

Amen and amen

As always, I love you from here,

Dr Jenine Marie Howry, PhD

What is “the Sacred”

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The sacred is what someone might consider to be divine, holy, of religious content, or deserving of veneration. What is sacred is different for everyone. When I personally think of the word I consider what is holy for me. This can be a holy moment of meditative prayer. Or, it can be a meaningful photo of what is connected to the divine that I put up on my wall. Some consider the bible sacred, and for others it might be another book they hold to be holy.

We think of these things as holy and sacred because of the connection or ideas they bring up. Sometimes it’s a feeling or sense of reverence. Our bodies were meant for worship and containment of the divine. We are human and yet considered the temple of God. Sometimes when I close my eyes I think of the Spirit of God reflected from my heart and filled into my body. For me, this is a sacred moment. My heart has a sense of expansion with love and adoration of what is bigger and greater than my human self.

To know we house this greatness is also a sacred knowledge, for no one knows this unless they have been enlightened to that knowledge. Once it is known, one can not go back to unknowing. It becomes a solid and righteous part of our existence. To know what we embody and carry is very empowering. When we truly know, the empowerment is greatly expanded. The greatness remains solid within us as long as we consider it holy and sacred. Once our pride starts to think it comes from our humanness we have stomped on God’s power. It happens this way so we will keep God holy, sacred, and powerful in our lives. To do this is to inhabit the ways and character of God. To forsake it is to weaken ourselves, bowing down to what is human, flesh, and ego. This is pride and pride always comes before a fall.

Whatever is sacred for you, it’s best to remember why it is and to uphold it within that wisdom. Sacred time, for instance, is just that because it brings us presence of divinity we can receive in no similar way. To take a holy breath with God, to fill our hearts with the love of God, to enjoy fellowship within the presence of our Creator, is the greatest holy moment we can practice.

Practice is a key word here. Nothing stays sacred for us without sacred practice. We do this to create a habit. Remember, our lives spring forth from the issues we carry in our hearts. Without sacred and holy practice, we enter into a realm of forgetting who we are and why we are here.

To grab a sense of what is sacred for you, spend some special time practicing that moment and then do it daily. You will find it is habit forming. Within days your perspective will change to one that is a reflection of what is spiritually God. Your heart will be changed by being in the presence of holy love. If you are struggling with issues that drain you, or searching for answers, these moments become even more important.

I’m going to ask that you close your eyes for a few moments and simply ask that which is sacred to help remind you of who and whose you are. Breathe deeply. Take in the elements that nurture your being. They are the same elements of the earth. We have breath/air, water, fire/energy, nutrients similar to those that come from the earth’s soil, and space that we have available to fill our lives with presence.

Consider this today. What is sacred to you and what is sacred practice? Make it a habit in your life. Journal the changes this habit brings or adds to your life. Over time you will see what sacred practice does to enhance every part of your existence.

Loving you from here,

Dr Jenine Marie Howry

 

Why It is Good to Pray FOR Your Enemies

Praying WomanMatthew 5: 43-48

43 “You have heard that it was said, ‘Love your neighbor[a] and hate your enemy.’44 But I tell you, love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you, 45 that you may be children of your Father in heaven. He causes his sun to rise on the evil and the good, and sends rain on the righteous and the unrighteous. 46 If you love those who love you, what reward will you get? Are not even the tax collectors doing that? 47 And if you greet only your own people, what are you doing more than others? Do not even pagans do that? 48 Be perfect, therefore, as your heavenly Father is perfect.

As we live on this planet it is impossible to not have those who dislike us or even can’t stand us. Having enemies or even those who have hatred for us is a part of living in this world. Where I agree it is hard to have those who are against us, it’s also a challenge to grow in heart, in life, and in spirit.

One of my favorite sayings is “Those who pray for their enemies have no enemies.” Jesus made His statement clear that it is easy to love our friends and those who love us, but where is the reward in that? Our true reward is in becoming more like our Lord and that means praying for, and loving, our enemies. I agree, it’s hard. This does not mean we have to agree with them. It does not mean we have to hang around them, because often their hearts have not changed, nor will they ever. What praying for, and loving our enemies does, is it puts us in a place of love that lays itself down for others. Jesus also taught us that there is no greater love than to lay down ones life. Of course, He put this in the context of being “friends”.

Praying for our enemies helps to change OUR hearts for the better. Loving those who do not love us back is the greatest love we could possibly have and also the greatest way to keep hatred from entering into our hearts. Can you agree that maybe we have enough hatred in this life? Granted our enemies might have too much pride to even draw near us or befriend us, but our goal is not impressing others. Our goal is becoming closer to being like our Lord and Savior. We want to be formed and fashioned into the image of our heavenly Father who sees us all as His creation. We might not all be His chosen, but we are all His creation.

To have hatred is to kill or murder from the heart. Think about that statement for a second. All open actions begin with our thoughts and what is in our hearts. If this is true then we are capable of doing things we might have never done had we not harbored hatred inside of us. Praying for our enemies changes this. Now, hear me in this; this does not mean our prayer is “God do something horrible to that person”. It means, “God please bless this person, keep them safe, help them to love more, come into their lives, be their Savior, reveal Yourself to them, change them from the inside out, and make them more like YOU!”

A dear man I was honored to be connected with, a father in the faith, prayed over peoples photos and had many that he posted in front of him while he prayed. I loved this practice and I came to adopt the very same thing. This helps us to see and visualize the person as a human being and in the presence of the Holy Spirit, we can genuinely come to love them as we pray for them to be blessed. In this way we are more like our heavenly Lord and also we spiritually create ways to build bridges instead of burn them.

Don’t we need more bridge builders in this life? What victory do we have in keeping our enemies wrapped in the heart of hatred? We only have victory when we allow love to win out. The Bible tells us that true love always wins. When we pray for our enemies and love our enemies we always win and so do they. They might not know it, or even recognize it, but they will win. Praying for those who hate us turns hate to love and shows we have grown into a greater maturity. Our prayers might not win humanitarian of the year award in someone else’s eyes, but God sees them as sacred.

If you want to do good in this world, start in your prayer closet and post Scriptures, pictures, prayers, and loving statements. How can you help but shine in the presence of your heavenly Father when you show Him your love and maturity?

Loving you from here,

Pastor Jenine Marie Howry

Jenine Marie Coaching and Ministries 

When We Love Others It Should Open Their Hearts Not Close Them

IMG_20170904_140736_219Not long ago I had a deep prayerful conversation with someone who has deeply touched my life. I think this person by far has been the strongest and yet most humbled I have known. We talked about who deserves Christ, the love of God, and how the Body of Christ is supposed to be “as one” just as Jesus is one with our Holy Father. There is no doubt we have a dysfunctional family but we are family none the less. Yet Jesus prayed we be one.

The oneness Jesus spoke of is not just one church body within an organization but through the whole Body of Christ. Yes, we fall short of that for sure. If we are ever supposed to achieve what Jesus asked for then we have to let down our guard, open our hearts, and allow bridges to be rebuilt where they have been torn down. We will never do this if we treat one another as an inconvenience.

Bottom line, lack of forgiveness is at the root of our demise. So many are unwilling to forgive or to allow their inner hurts to be revealed. Unfortunately, the only way to be completely be set free from inner hurts is to expose them, let God heal them through Christ, and choose to love even when it is hardest. Healing begins this way, and oneness begins this way as well.

I understand it is hard to look at the truth when we think it might be an imposition upon our lives. Maybe it will expose something we don’t want others to know about. Unfortunately God knows it all anyway and eventually it will all be exposed in the light of Christ. We might as well expose it now and get it over with. Sometimes we think of our own self instead of the other side of someone else’s issues. How many people could we heal if we would just allow them into our hearts enough to converse with them, get to know them, and understand them, like Jesus did?

It grieves my heart that we are so burned in our souls that we burn others when they try to touch us. Sometimes we even burn ourselves. Can we ever reach the point of maturity where we can let down our guard enough to give others the benefit of the doubt that they might be great people? Maybe they made mistakes. Maybe we ourselves made some too. We all have sinned and have fallen short of God’s glory. Are we too self centered that we deny Jesus His one prayer to the Holy Father before His crucifixion? He said, “…that all of them be one, Father, just as You are in Me, and I am in You…” John 17:21.

The Lord instructed us all to pray for our enemies. Although, often who we consider to be our enemies are not enemies at all. Praying for someone is the most loving and excellent thing to do. This does not mean, “Get them Father”, but “bless them Lord”. In all honestly, we break one another’s hearts. That is a given. We do this because of our own wounds. Our wounds push away instead of cover like Christ. This should not be, yet it is a reality within our Christian faith and the Lord’s Body.

Thankfully, the Lord always knows the intention of our hearts and when they are good, he acknowledges the goodness within us. So, keep on praying for those who oppose you, who have hurt you deeply, who have lied to you, and who have cast you off. Your heavenly Father knows your heart, has felt your pain, and will heal you because of your obedience. He loves when we build bridges instead burn them. This does not mean we take disrespect. We can pray at a distance. But it does mean that God can work miracles through our prayers with good intentions. He loves us with an everlasting love. That means all of us! He never treats us as an inconvenience, never lies to us, never blocks us when we reach out, and never stops loving even when we fail Him.

None of us deserves His love and yet He gives it lavishly. We should be grateful for what we have in Him and for what we have in one another. Maybe some day we all will. Until that day, we keep on praying without ceasing, because it still remains the most loving thing any person can do for another.

In love and healing

Pastor Jenine Marie Howry

Jenine Marie Coaching and Ministries

800-421-1765

 

On a Wing and a Prayer

Praying WomanDuring the days of the early church, the Apostle Paul never ceased to emphasize the power of prayer. Often from a dank prison cell he lovingly sent the new Christian church letters asking for prayer as he prayed for them. He made it pretty obvious that he knew the power that was contained within our Godly connection through prayer.

Jesus prayed often to Father God while on earth. In fact, He went off to quiet places and prayed passionately at the spiritual throne. In teaching His disciples, He prayed that the Kingdom of God would come to earth the same as it is in heaven and that we would all be one. Jesus angrily overturned the tables of money changers in the court of the temple and proclaimed His “Father’s house” to be one of prayer.

Now, we are the temple of God through His Holy Spirit. Nothing has changed since Jesus’ proclamation about the temple. We are the place where prayer is to originate and take up residence. Both personally and corporately our prayers press into the power of God and bring Kingdom dynamics from heaven to earth. Our prayer life is our wisdom and our connection to the creative force that brought the world, all that is in it, and surrounding it into being. Our connection with the One who gave us breath is our very life and remains our breath.

Our prayerful moments give us the power to face our giants, to fight spiritual battles, to learn to walk in wisdom and to wait on God’s instruction. In fact, waiting is one of the most powerful blessings we can receive. The Bible instructs us as we wait we can rise up on wings as eagles. There is a strengthening that happens as we pray and wait on God for His response. Waiting perfects our inner diligence and in that developmental moment when our heart is wrapped with God’s we can discover the ability to soar in ways we never thought possible.

Prayer brings us into the presence of the Godhead. Our inner temple connects to God in high heavenly places and in that moment we are completely One as a baby is within its mother’s womb. It is in those moments where we literally place ourselves into the womb of God that we perfect our faith, arise to meet our destiny, connect with the One true love that created all things, and find our identities within His grace and compassion.

There is no greater moment than those precious moments when the human soul connects with the love that eventually will bring us all home. Whether in precious silence, or in passionate petition, our hearts connect with the only thing in life we could not possibly ever live without; the God who knows us better than anyone ever could.

Take this moment as one to spend time with God in prayer and practice moments with Him daily. In practice, we learn to continually connect ourselves spiritually and to pray without ceasing as the Bible instructs us. Our lives depend on it and our destinies are driven by it.

Prayerfully yours,

Pastor Jenine Marie Howry

Jenine Marie Coaching and Ministries

Is It Time For Refreshing?

bear-canyon-falls-1Life has become routine, disconnected, filled with negativity, and a sense of being somewhat lost. Are you experiencing these things? If you are, then God is calling you to the throne and it is time for some refreshing. Taking time to spend only with your heavenly Father is essential for your spiritual and life health. It is like taking a trip to the doctor only so much better! Yes, we should spend time with God daily, but sometimes we need a concentrated time of refreshing.

This might just be your time when God is calling you to the throne for some evaluation, inspiration, and a dose of His love for you! When was the last time you took at least a week and set time aside to spend just filling yourself with God’s word, prayer, and listening for His wisdom for your life?

If you feel a bit lost, kind of alone, and don’t know why. Maybe you are craving some much needed God time! Put it on the schedule and don’t miss your date with Him! He has been waiting for you!

Pastor Jenine Marie Howry

Jenine Marie Coaching and Ministries 

Narcissistic Love Bombing: Have You Been Its Target?

tumblr_nb1kh3NtGR1tar97bo1_1280I suppose before I start, for those who do not know, I should explain what “love bombing” is and why it is a part of relationship abuse cycles. Love bombing is something  someone who is a narcissist, or potential abuser, does in order to hook someone into a relationship very quickly with them. They do this by pouring out love and devotion way too soon during your connection. For instance, you meet someone and within a day they are “in love with you” and know you are the one they want the rest of their life. During love bombing you will get messages all day long, phone calls, emails, texts, and all of them will have undying devotion. Statements like “I know you are the one” or “I am going to marry you some day” will come out of them far before that person even knows you very well.

You will receive complements, flowers, a continual connection, and all of your time will be consumed by this narcissistic person. You will be his/her love of their life long before they even know what kind of person you are. This is a huge relationship red flag by the way. Let me share one of my personal examples.

After meeting someone for the first time to have dinner, I received a text message while I was still driving home that stated, “I know you are the one, I like you far much more than I even expected. What was the best part of our date for you tonight?” We did have a great time with a lot of talk about personal things. He was very likable, adorable, and seemingly kind; a very easy person to talk to.

The love bombing continued. I had a text the very first thing in the morning, a call as soon as work was over, another date secured the moment there was time free. Each date was like a dream come true. He cooked for me, shared personal information easily with me, and listened to my heart while holding my hand. All of these things seem very likable. In fact they seemed to be the answer to my prayers. I was sucked in, hook, line, and sinker. We were both Christians so he prayed with me and did a good job of it. All of the prayers offered the indication there was already devotion and they alluded to marriage from the beginning. Within a very short period of time those suggestions regarding marriage became actual verbal statements. “I know I will marry you and we will spend the rest of our lives together. ”

While these things seem great, they were happening way too soon and way too fast. A love bomber will give you no time for anyone else in life. He/she will take all of your time with their undying devotion, romantic gestures, and dating interludes. You will find that you have no time for friends or family members and many of them will wonder where you have been for the last week, month, or months. This is actually a strategic tactic to get you more isolated and it works like a charm for many unless you recognize it and understand it. The problem is, once they hook you there is a greater opportunity to bring someone else into the picture without your knowledge. Suddenly he/she won’t have as much time for you as before. Or you will have a set schedule so there will be no reason to think he/she has someone else. All the while your new love is setting up what is called “triangulation”.

Triangulation is the narcissistic integration of another person whom he or she is love bombing as well in order to create their very strategic and sick drama. Sometimes the triangulation happens with an ex partner and sometimes it is someone they used to date, or someone completely new. That person may or may not know about you. If they do know about you, he or she will make sure you are the “crazy person” that they can’t get rid of. This gains sympathy and helps the love bomber create an aura of being victimized in order to secure the triangulated new person.

I know this all seems a bit way out there, but this HAPPENS and it has happened to me! If someone seems to be expressing undying love for you way too soon and is showering you with gifts, complements, and dates. If that person is getting close too fast and isolating you from others you usually spend time with. RUN! Love bombing is a narcissistic covert action that will eventually be something that causes you great pain in the end.

If you have been the victim of a narcissist and their love bombing. I want to pray for you. You can call anytime at 800-421-1765 and please leave a message for a call back. These actions are more common than you might think and there are many who are out there struggling with the very same issues. You are not alone! There is support. Find a good support group or even start one! We need all the empowerment we can get after being affected by a narcissist.

With loving education,

Pastor Jenine Marie Howry

Jenine Marie Coaching and Ministries

**Image compliments of “It Is Quiet Here”

You Are NOT What Others Say You Are!

beauty girl cryDoesn’t it seem like these days no matter what we do there is always someone who is unhappy about it? We’ve talked about differing opinions before. They are a dime a dozen (maybe with inflation a quarter a dozen)! We are our own self, a reflection of God’s unique creation.

Even in community doesn’t it seem like we all end up morphing into people who all start to look the same from the inside out? We are supposed to be around like minded people, but not to the extent where we morph into each other. The truth is, no matter how hard one might try, we can’t become someone else no matter how much we admire that person.

Sometimes we even compromise our uniqueness. We do this by people pleasing or feeling bad about ourselves when others don’t like something about us. We are a sensitive bunch, aren’t we? What about what YOU like about yourself? Even more, what about what God loves about you?

I like to talk about this subject because my primary ministry is to women affected by abuse and infidelity. Harshness, rejection, and lack of acceptance can send a person to tip the scales the wrong way in the uniqueness department. An abused woman or one who has been cheated on will go out of her way to please everyone around her just to overcompensate for her past lack of acceptance. There are a couple of hard realities when it comes to this.

  1. If she does this she will never heal and rediscover the true value of her real self the way God made her.
  2. No one can please everyone no matter how hard we try.

I’m going to give you some statements to keep you on the right track.

“I am how God made me, not what others say I am.”

” I am worth loving when I am just being myself.”

“The only one I truly need to please is God. Others will have to accept me as I am or not accept me at all.”

“I will not overcompensate just to make someone else happy with me, or compromise what I like, love, or desire in my life.”

“Other people’s thoughts about me are their own business, not mine.” (One of my personal favorites)!

Please don’t compromise the unique person that you are just to please someone else, or morph yourself into someone else’s idea of who you should be. Like what YOU like. Do the things YOU like to do. Remember that Jesus thought you were worth dying for, so please remember your value is immeasurable just the way you decide you want to be!

I challenge you today to not conform to any person’s abusive view of you! Do the healing work needed in order to overcome another person’s nastiness concerning who you are, what you like, your gifts and talents, your body image, and your self worth. Need prayer for this? Don’t be shy. Be bold enough to heal and call me! YOU can do this with God! Don’t put it off. You are NOT what others say you are. You are who GOD created you to be!

Also, stop trying to conform to another person’s image of who you should be. Go to God for healing. See once again who God created you to be! That image might be buried deep inside you but it is still there! Let others see the unique person you are, and even more, love yourself as you are!

Being ourselves together,

Pastor Jenine Marie Howry

800-421-1765 for prayer

How To Develop “Thicker Skin”: Five Ways

8fa1e5612b7f33f12c42e5cc1c38979bHave you ever had someone tell you that you need thicker skin, meaning that you are too sensitive and respond to insult way too easy? If so, I totally get it! Before I continue, I want to suggest you embrace your sensitivity and all of the good things about it. If you are sensitive it means you are compassionate, empathetic, and that you care about all that brings goodness in this life.

If you are too sensitive it means you can easily react out of your wounds. This is not all together a bad thing, so if this is you, don’t fret! It means that it points to where your wounds are and that can help you heal a lot.

Here Comes the Story! 

First, before I go further, you KNOW I have to tell a story. Yep, I have one for every message I put out there! When I was taking classes to become a medical assistant way back in the stone age, we used to use an orange to do injections on before we practiced on our lab partner. There is a huge reason for this! The orange has a thick enough skin to protect the inner part of it, yet it is pliable enough to allow the healing benefits of the injection into the interior (or the heart) of the fruit. The skin around an orange protects the inside from becoming bruised. Once the fruit has a  bruised exterior things can effect the heart of it.

In the same respect, we need to have thicker skin in this world but pliable enough to allow healing to still reach our hearts. Thicker skin does not mean a hardened heart. It means we have learned to discern experiences outside of ourselves before we allow them to hurt our hearts. So how do we do this? How do we have thicker skin?

  1. Learn the truth. When people shoot insult toward us it is more about THEM than it is about US. That person is responding out of their wounds, their own opinions, or their own experience in the way they see situations. Repeat, it really is NOT about YOU! 
  2. Take time to process before responding. This is a learned thing for all of us and some are better at it than others. Be slow to speak means to back off and think first. Remember #1. Its more about them than about you! Even if you have to leave a situation or leave the room for awhile before responding than do that!
  3. Not all things require your personal response. This can be your opportunity to be the observer and just let the issue be laid in the lap of from whom it came.
  4. If it is a situation that has occurred, remember that God is your advocate. You need not respond right away or sometimes not at all. If it is an evil done to you than leave it with God. Pray. Leave it. Pray again, and repeat.
  5. Remember you don’t have to take everything into your heart. You can know it, hear it, experience it, understanding it, but you don’t have to BECOME it. When you allow every experience into your heart it becomes a part of you. REMEMBER THIS! It will help you keep from reacting when you want to spew out against other opinions, situations, and issues that you probably can’t do a thing about.

These are just a few to start you off. I bet you can think of a few more if you really sit down and consider all angles. Be good to yourself. It takes practice! It’s alright if you mess up now and then. Just remember what messing up has cost you. Sometimes it costs precious time we could have spent enjoying life a lot more. If an issue is getting you down and you need time before dealing with it, then take a detour and do something enjoyable first! It will enhance your life and give you a better perspective before you respond. As always, cling to God. He will help you heal, become stronger, and live better!

If you have trouble with having a thicker skin, you can always pray with someone! I love to do this because it gives me thicker skin too!

Loving you from here,

Pastor Jenine Marie Howry

832-484-8306  for thicker skin prayers! 🙂

Bear Your Soul

cry-out-to-jesusI’m not sure if this blog post is education or expression. Maybe it’s a little bit of both of them. That would not be altogether a bad thing, would it? Expression is important to us, especially when we direct it toward God. He listens and hears even when others pass us over. In fact, He listens to the silent pains of our hearts. Just like he did with Hannah. Hannah wanted to desperately have a child and she was taunted because she could not produce. Her pain was so intense that when she prayed she could not even get words out that could even match what was in her heart. So she silently prayed in anguish before God in the temple. She felt crushed and bruised on the inside and she felt rejected and forgotten by God.

1 Samuel 1:11 (12)

“Crushed in soul, Hannah prayed to God and cried and cried—inconsolably.”

“Hannah was praying in her heart, silently. Her lips moved, but no sound was heard.”

Sometimes we get like that. The issues we deal with in life are so hard that there are no words that can even express them. If we were to give them to people, they sure would not sound very good. Plus there comes a time when expressing to people no longer serves us and only God can console our hearts.

For Hannah, she just had to get it out to God, and in a way that was honest and true. Her silent petitions inconsolably went before Him in ways maybe human ears should never have heard. I’m sure her pain was overlooked by those who looked down on her for not being able to conceive a child during times when producing children identified a woman. God and God alone was her only option. I am sure she must have felt He was her last option. (He should have been her first option).

There she was, bearing her soul to the One who made her and understood her. She let out her hurt, her anger, her anxiety, depression, and sadness. Her words of promise went before Him. She requested if God would allow her to conceive she would dedicate her child to Him in service. God saw her, heard her, and met her in that place. He also granted her petition of faith and she conceived a child.

There is something about bearing our soul to God. It is a powerful move. His power and strength are shown great through our weakness and vulnerability. Don’t ever be afraid to be vulnerable before God. He knows you. He made you. If we want strength, and also to be heard, sometimes it takes a silent petition of the heart to God. Healing comes from bearing our soul. Sometimes we need to emotionally bleed out in order to remove old scars and allow healing to begin. This is what Hannah did. She bled out her heartache. Jesus did the same in the Garden of Gethsemane before He bore the cross. Both Hannah and Jesus had to accept the will of God after their petitions. One birthed a child, the other died on a cross and birthed us all. They bore their souls and God responded according to His perfect will.

If you are at a place of truly needing healing, and to be heard, and you have emptied your entire self to other people without understanding, maybe it is time to bear your soul to God? What does it solve to keep it inside of you? If you have prayed with others, talked your head blue, and wondered why things are not working with no results, then maybe it is time to drop to your knees and pray like Hannah. When you do, remind God of His promises and then accept His will. Be real. Be authentic. God knows it all anyway, so let it all rip. Believe me, it helps more than you might know.

Prayerfully on the journey,

Pastor Jenine Marie Howry

800-421-1765