“O LORD, why do You stand so far away? Why do You hide when I am in trouble?” (Psalm 10:1)
"How long wilt Thou forget me, O LORD? Forever? how long wilt Thou hide Thy face from me? (Psalm 13:1-6)
The book of Psalms is a wonderful place to begin a search for an answer to the questions asked by the Psalmists. The Psalmists were unwavering as they sorted out their pain before God. Whenever trouble or suffering surfaced, humankind asked God the same question, “Why do you hide your face from me?”
Since day one, we humans have continually sinned and rebelled against our Creator since we thought we knew better than God did. When our choices turned out disastrous, we continued to plea with God to overlook our rebellion and fix our mistakes. As long as the rebellion continued, the pleas and questions carried on and sacrifices offered as an attempt to pacify God. However, the question remained. "O LORD, why do You hide when I am in trouble?"
The answer to the question is, the Cross…
The last hours before the cross, everyone around Jesus failed him. They fell asleep, turned their back, denied, betrayed, humiliated, and dehumanized Him. The story of Jesus’s crucifixion in all four gospels was a lesson for future generations. Therefore, if we can imagine ourselves at the cross on that fateful day maybe we will see ourselves shouting amongst the crowd, “crucify"! Maybe we will see ourselves in the crowd, spiting, mocking, or even denying Jesus. Have you ever asked yourself this painful question? "How could we have done this to Jesus?" In doing so, we may be so moved by the tragedy done to Jesus and realize that what happened to Him is an indictment against all of us. We are all broken, flawed, self-centered, and weak. We are all in need of God’s forgiveness.
Jesus prayed for those who crucified Him while He suffered on the cross, "Father forgive them". Jesus was pleading for God's mercy for the entire human race as though we were all there at the cross. He willingly took on the full experience of pain to show what it cost God to show mercy to us. Jesus paid the ultimate ransom price while the human race stood trial. He took the judgement meant for us and offered as the atonement for our sin. The crucifixion of Jesus was a tragedy, but it was not the end...
Every year as Easter comes and goes; I see my part in Jesus’s suffering as I confront my humanity. When I look at the cross, I recognize my own sin. I am no longer blind to my own brokenness. I see the truth of God's grace and mercy through Jesus's sacrifice. Without Jesus's suffering and sacrifice, I am truly alone with no hope of redemption. Jesus willingly chose to be the final sacrificial lamb for you and me because He loves us so much!
"Greater love has no one than this, that he lay down his life for his friends." John 15:13
The moment Jesus died; the temple curtain tore in two revealing the end of the separation of God and humankind because of sin. In that moment, Jesus became our priest and our intermediary with God. Jesus Christ is our redeemer. This is God's triumph!
The empty cross and tomb is the reminder of our Savior defying death! He is alive and He is the victor. Blessed is the day when earth and heaven join in reconciliation. Until then, the battle between good and evil will continue. I pray that the light of Jesus will shine continually in my heart to drive away darkness and reflect His love through me as I reach out to others.
May God's peace be with you,
I did not vote for the new US President, but I am praying for him. In this time of uncertainty and division in our nation, I pray that President Trump will humble himself and preserve God’s commandments. I pray that he will make his ear attentive to God's wisdom and incline his heart to understanding. Anything else would be a disaster. While writing this, my thoughts are veering to David from the Old Testament as I discuss similarity and contrasts.
While still a boy, David was esteemed by King Saul because David served the King with sincerity. but when David's prosperity became so extensive after slaying the giant, Saul's suspicion and mistreatment of the boy grew. David longed to serve God long before and during his reign over Israel as their Monarch. History reminds us that David was a gifted composer of Psalms prompting his greatness, but we must also remember that he was merely a man, plagued with flaws in his character. He swung between extremes. On one side, he was strong in battle, but weak at home. He was a man of triumph and then faced tragedy and failure in his reign. While still a boy, David was esteemed by King Saul because David served the King with sincerity. but when David's prosperity became so extensive, Saul's suspicion and mistreatment of the boy increased. Though David was seen as a hero, his life became difficult to endure, but through it all, he continued to serve God.
Returning back now to my thoughts of President Trump. I sincerely pray that he longs to serve God as he leads our nation. However, I have not seen any attributes of a Christian life in this new president. Instead, I hear his vulgar comments about women. The main similarity to David is that President Trump is also plagued with flaws of character, many of them. President Trump is more like a man-child who has no control over his tweeting impulses.
While campaigning, he continually speaks lowly about women, ethnic groups, status groups, etc. Whenever I listened to his rhetoric, my mind raced back to a time when I was bullied by a former spouse, so you can understand why I recognize him for what he is, a bully. Unfortunately, his thoughtless words push away the very people he should be listening to as they voice their genuine concerns. For some reason, Donald Trump has a charismatic gift of drawing a certain type of people to him with his exuberant promises. So, on inauguration day, we wait to hear a unifying message of hope. Instead, we hear his slogan of, 'making America great again' followed by, "This American carnage stops right here and stops right now." Simultaneously, he goes low and purposely excludes many through his divisive message. These are the very people that are holding onto hope that our new President cares about everyone in America. Apparently, this is not so.
I cannot grasp what his agenda might be for he is a man contrary to reason. My question is this; What will this great America look like if he continues to exclude and disenfranchise women and minorities? As a woman and senior citizen, I remember the progress made with regard to equality for women and minorities over the decades. Will equality suddenly regress or even disappear as a has-been from the past?
In office since Friday, January 20th, 2017, President Trump still has not attempted to unify our nation. He continues to be more concerned with his ratings. I suppose I should not be surprised, considering how he has handled things up to this point.
In conclusion, because I respect the office of President, I will continue to pray for him. I pray that he will turn to God for guidance. I pray that he will long to serve God. In the mean time, I will continue to stay alert, fight for change, and fight injustice, as I walk in faith and God's love.
Update February 12, 2017:
Robert Reich recently wrote the following opinion on Facebook;
"In just the first 3 weeks of his presidency, Trump and his henchmen have conducted major assaults on civil liberties, open government, freedom of the press, religious freedom, the independence of the courts, and government ethics." [Robert Reich is Chancellor's Professor of Public Policy at the University of California at Berkeley and Senior Fellow at the Blum Center for Developing Economies. He served as Secretary of Labor in the Clinton administration,]
[Mr. Reich's startling opinion tells me that we must continue to stay alert and continue to pray for this president. I pray that he humble himself before God, that he follow God's commandments, that he seek peace rather than division, and that he preserve America's civil liberties by treating all citizens fairly. Please keep in mind that this is merely my opinion}
Kathy Goodhew, author
I am relieved that the 2016 US election is over. Many are optimistic about the outcome while many others are not. Roller-coaster emotions ranging from sheer happiness to shock, disbelief, anxiety, fear, and dread appear to be an obvious reaction to the recent election results causing the losing side to protest throughout our nation.
The First Amendment states that “Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people to peaceably assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.”
I get that you are hurting due to the election results just as many in the nation were stunned. Many of you are overwhelmed with anxiety and fear about a candidate who implemented a tribal stance. It was and still is a 'us versus them attitude'. Rather than reaching out to all people with a hope-filled message, he used demeaning and divisive language when he spoke about women and ethnic groups. What I find surprising is how his message resonated with the rural population. Perhaps it was because they have felt forgotten for the past eight years. He talked about 'making America great again' which appealed to many and literally became a movement and it helped him win the election. However, due to his tribal stance that pitted us against each other during the campaign has now given license to some people that is okay to continue to speak and act divisively against each other when we ought to be bridging the divide in our nation. It is up to our president-elect to change his tone to one that ties all of America together again. I hope and pray that he recognizes what he must do.
A number of people on the losing side now feel fear and alienation. Reports of growing tension in schools is now on the rise as white students verbally abuse other ethnic groups. These students assume that it's okay to treat others in a demeaning manner since their candidate did. Then there is the painful realization that many residents fear that they will become further marginalized and ignored by the new leadership.
We must let go of this divisiveness. If you are on the losing side please turn to your neighbor and listen to why they feel forgotten. Share with them to continue to stay alert, fight for change, fight injustice, and choose to walk in love. For those of you on the winning side and those who do not feel any sort of threat; please turn to your neighbor and listen to why they feel so much fear. Share with them to stay alert, fight for change, fight injustice, and choose to walk in love.
Believe it or not, we are all neighbors and we are in this together as we travel into unfamiliar waters. The uncertainty that comes with this new place is frightening and inconceivable and yet, all one has to do is to look back through history to see that our ancestors traveled into unfamiliar waters as well. Still, they firmly treasured their founding documents in the midst of chaos. [When read together, the Declaration of Independence and the United States Constitution tell us that the people’s rights are divine in origin, sacred and unalienable, while governments are human in origin, answerable to the people and dependent entirely on their consent.] This is what we should remember; the United States of America has been through ugly times. Consider the great divide aka American Civil War. Rather than relying on human leaders, our ancestors latched onto God's guidance in the midst of their unknown territory. By doing so, their great divide eventually came to an end and the union endured.
A bit of history:
1) One could call it a 'large scale' protest following the Presidential election in 6 November 1860. After the votes were counted and reported by telegraph on the 7th or 8th of November that Abraham Lincoln had won, the state legislature of South Carolina voted on 9 November to declare Lincoln's election a hostile act and its intention to secede from the Union, hence the Confederacy and the Civil War.
2) The American Civil War was a civil war in the United States fought from 1861 to 1865. The Union faced secessionists in eleven Southern states grouped together as the Confederate States of America. The Union won the war, which remains the bloodiest in U.S. history.
It is everyone's right to peacefully assemble with freedom of speech, however, these nightly protests have gotten out of hand. Your demands might be a healthy outlet, but your efforts are being strangled by the rising vandalism. Word of arrests have risen out of a number of cities regarding people obstructing traffic, reckless conduct, trespassing, burning projectiles being thrown at officers, as well as damaged vehicles. This is NOT peaceably assembling! This is a mob participating in destructive vandalism. Those participating are involved in what's called as mob mentality. Mob mentality usually leads to reckless and destructive actions and causes a person to believe that they can behave a certain way within the group that would not have the same penalties as when he or she acted alone.
The presidency was won fair and square, so we must strive to acknowledge that this is our new reality. Our democracy and constitution cherishes and protects the peaceful transfer of power. Therefore, we owe the president-elect our respect and our receptiveness to new ideas and the chance for him to lead our nation in a proficient manner. If we disagree with his direction, any citizen can petition the Government with a grievance. We must not regress and turn into a mob with a mob mentality or our nation will not be able to endure. Abraham Lincoln once said; "A house divided against itself cannot stand." Therefore, we must preserve all that America stands for by finding a way to bridge our divide so we can begin to heal. I believe the way to do this is to let go and let God guide each of us as He guides our leaders. By letting go of our divisiveness, we are allowing the process of healing to take place. It also makes us distinctive as proud citizens of THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA! If you need help letting go then turn to the one King who will not let you down, Jesus Christ.
Blessings and until next time,
Kathy Goodhew, author
An election year has a way of bringing about such intense emotions that divide and cause so much strain between friends and family who happen to be political polar opposites. No matter what party a person identifies with, the consequences of a political remark has a risk of affecting someones feelings, raising hackles and blood pressure, and possibly destroying relationships, all because words can either heal or destroy. Recently, I made what I thought was a subtle and entirely harmless comment over social media regarding my favorable impression of the most recent convention. It was not meant to start a heated debate, but it raised the hackles of a longtime friend, but we are political polar opposites. She quickly responded to my comment with an attack against my viewpoint and then proceeded to unfriend me. Her words were hurtful, but what hurt even more was that she felt that she couldn't be my friend anymore due to our political divide!
When the 2016 election comes to an end, most good friendships have a way of surviving the election so they can move on with a return to normalcy and continued friendship. Anyway, having the same politic view shouldn't be a requirement for friendship. Try to imagine a world of no diversity; one view. I think you will agree that the world would be incredibly boring.
So what does the above story have to do with character?
Character is the quality of our nature that defines each of us. It can be an unhealthy nature that is self-absorbed or the sweet fruit of the inner spirit that is visible to all. Character is what people are aware of when they listen to you and when they see your behavior in action. It is also one of the most important things you have to guide you throughout life. It will be your character that people will talk about after you have passed. So, how are you investing in your character? Your character requires tending so it can flourish much like the flowers in your garden. Do people see the person you truly want to be by your actions and words or do they see someone they don't like very much? Is your character reflected in how you treat others? Are you using your words as a weapon or as a healing force? Remember that when you pass away, Jesus will either say, “welcome; job well done” or “I never knew you; be gone!” It is up to you to decide on who you want to be.
True character is revealed in the following biblical verses from the book of Galatians;
Galatians 5: 19-21 "The acts of the sinful [unhealthy] nature are obvious: sexual immorality, impurity and debauchery; idolatry and witchcraft; hatred, discord, jealousy, fits of rage, selfish ambition, dissensions, factions, and envy; drunkenness, orgies, and the like. I warn you, as I did before, that those who live like this will not inherit the kingdom of God.
Having the same political view is not a requirement for a friendship to succeed. However, sometimes when one person is unable to accept the other’s political viewpoint, the differences can topple a fragile relationship. And yet, many people manage to keep their political views and their friendships intact. I know of two people that are not hindered by their political differences, because they recognize that their connection is more important than an election. Those with successful friendships have simply learned the art of agreeing to disagree and avoid the topic that is volatile. Another valuable reason for their success is that they treat each other with respect so that their friendship is not destroyed by their differences.
Until next time,
Kathy Goodhew, author
In the film, Wizard of Oz, Dorothy closed her eyes, clicked her ruby shoes together, and said three times; there’s no place like home, there's no place like home, there's no place like home. The landscape began to fade and in a flash, she found herself back on the farm with all of her loved ones beside her. She must have felt elated when she realized how much she was loved.
Have you ever felt that everything would be all right if we could just go home where we can rest and recover, knowing that it's all right to be our self among our loved ones. However, most of us know that home is not a place. It is a feeling (an inner sense) of belonging. Dorothy found her way back to the loving arms of her family because, deep down, she knew all along that she belonged to them.
Guess what, that is exactly what Christ Jesus's faithful and unconditional love provides for each of us. I am thankful to have found that my home is not a place, but a reassuring feeling of intense love from someone who knows me better than I do myself. I know with all of my heart that I belong to my Father in Heaven. He loves us so much and he laid down His life for us! There is no greater love.
My elation overflows with four A's; Amazing, Awesome, Alleluia, and Amen!
May His peace be with you,
Kathy Goodhew, author
The 2012 film ‘Cloud Atlas’ was a challenge to take in due to six separate stories laced together, and yet, a basic concept began to form in my mind and has gradually brought clarity upon considering the bigger picture. Perhaps the author had something else in mind; hut my idea is well worth exploring.
The official synopsis described the film as "an exploration of how the actions of individual lives impact one another in the past, present and future, as one soul is shaped from a killer into a hero, and an act of kindness ripples across centuries to inspire a revolution. An absorbing quote in the film comes from Sonmi-451: "Our lives are not our own. From womb to tomb, we are bound to others, past and present. And by each crime and every kindness, we birth our future."
From the time of young adulthood, I have come to the same conclusion. Everything and everyone in this universe is connected. We are the product of the same substance, which binds us together for forever. What one does creates a chain reaction and in turn, affects those around us. Therefore, we must be careful when choosing our options.
Another intriguing quote is this; “There is a natural order to this world, and those who try to upend it do not fare well. This movement will never survive; if you join them, you and your entire family will be shunned. At best, you will exist a pariah to be spat at and beaten-at worst, to be lynched or crucified. And for what? For what? No matter what you do it will never amount to anything more than a single drop in a limitless ocean. Adam Ewing answers: “What is an ocean but a multitude of drops?”
The period in time varies during the course of the film, but within each story, I sensed a theme and sub-theme. The basic theme focuses on ‘choices’ and the sub-theme deals with ‘discrimination’. I have a notion that the author was attempting to convey that everyone has the option to choose for good or to choose to be hurtful.
Personally, I believe that sometimes a seemingly sound choice can end up causing harm without deliberately meaning to. Therefore, one must have enough sense and to take great care when making choices, because a wrong choice can have a ripple effect with long-term consequences for others as well as oneself.
Within the film, no matter the period in history, a social ladder system appears to prevail, consisting of invisible boundaries. The upper class with or without meaning to, prevents the lower class from crossing the social boundaries in their search for an abundant life.
For eons, humankind has endured numerous boundaries waiting to be conquered. Through the ages, due to individual and society choices, people have had to endure some form of discrimination. A few examples would be discrimination of gender, discrimination of skin color, and disregard of the lower class and those who might look or conform differently from what society has set down as the conventional standard.
Looking back through history, one can see how more often than not, the governing body as well as members of the aristocracies’ main goal was to keep order and lawfulness. However, due to a choice of using their power for personal gain, a distorted strategy was born. This distorted version employed greed and power to control the masses. Our predecessors have witnessed how plans can go awry due to the temptation of personal gain. Over time, they came to realize that those in power are at higher risk of being tempted towards dishonesty. They suspected that corruption would foul the works, because of the way it crushed the human spirit.
As a member of the masses, I have to ask myself, “If this is the way it has been for ages, then are we supposed to merely accept our fate without any kind of protest? My answer is a resounding NO. I believe that you will agree and you might then ask, “How can we go beyond or transcend these invisible boundaries?” I say that anything is possible if we remove the limiting mindset that is holding us back and replace it with enough confidence to take a leap of faith. That's when we will conquer the boundary that attempts to holds us back. This is why I am fond of what the author wrote in the film.
"All boundaries are waiting to be transcended and of first conceiving of doing so before one can ever begin to actually rise above the boundaries."
His concept parallels mine and reminds me of someone who did just that. He did not accept the system’s boundaries. He made ripples and waves, lots of them every time He convicted the establishment’s self-serving rules. Because of His determination and persistence, He rose above the social boundaries. His words and actions clearly annoyed the religious leaders as well as the governing body, especially since the masses were clearly miserable being under Rome's thumb.
I have included another quote from the film, paving the way to the One I speak:
Sonmi-451: This is what General Apis asked of me.
Archivist: What, to be executed?
Sonmi-451: If I had remained invisible, the truth would stay hidden. I couldn't allow that.
Archivist: And what if no one believes this truth?
Sonmi-451: Someone already does.
The above dialogue sounds recognizable. A particular Jewish carpenter from over two thousand years ago might have answered similarly, had he chosen to advocate for His right to live. However, He remained silent during His trial and execution, because He had complete trust in His Heavenly Father and His plan for humanity... I now present, Jesus of Nazareth, a profit, a teacher, a rabbi, and above all, the Son of God.
Without a doubt, Jesus was the greatest at transcending boundaries. One of the most remarkable triumphs of Jesus was His method of crossing social and religious boundaries by his open fellowship with the lowly and scorned. By doing so, he deliberately challenged the old testament rules regarding pureness. He even broke the Sabbath (The holy day of rest and reflection observed among the Jews) in order to help people. He regularly connected with the lower class and the rejected with a gift of a hopeful sense of love and equality.
One example of Jesus rising above man's boundaries was when He spoke to a Samaritan who happened to be a woman. His decision to have an exchange with the woman was uncharacteristic for that period in time because the social custom frowned heavily on both actions, but it did not matter to Jesus. Due to the social blunder that Jesus committed, the disciples were shocked to see Him in deep discussion with the Samaritan woman. When he saw the disbelief in their eyes, Jesus chose that moment to teach the disciples about God’s love for the human race. He told them to open their eyes and see that people of all cultures were hungry to hear about God’s unconditional love. He went on to tell them to see the harvest that is ready and accessible for the Kingdom of God.
Because of His ministry, Jesus’s was more noticeable than his disciples were. He shouldered more responsibility. Therefore, he had more to lose by having an exchange with the woman but he proved that it did not matter when he rebuked the disciples for being blind to what He could clearly see. At the end of the passage in John, we see that several people come to believe Jesus because of that woman’s eyewitness testimony. Jesus used the occasion to teach his disciples the importance of cross-cultural ministry and to get them out of their limited mindset box-- a box of discrimination-- in which they occupied.
This story is for everyone, because we are all capable of occupying a limited mindset box when we deliberately or even unintentionally choose to hurt others. It might be a rash decision to drink and drive. It might be a careless comment that reveals one's stance on inequality or discrimination. Whatever the cause, it is time to wake up and open our eyes. We have a choice to stay in or break out of our limiting mindset box. It is time to see what Jesus was able to see when He looked at the scorned woman. We can make a difference. It begins with one person, and then another, and so on, until we have become an ocean of voices. We must not deny people access to an abundant life and the grace of Christ. Like Jesus Christ, we can rise beyond man’s boundaries to reach the rejected, all social levels, and all cultures to proclaim the good news of Jesus Christ.
May God's love be with you,
I have a dream that my four little children will one day live in a nation where they will not be judged by the color of their skin, but by the content of their character." by, Martin Luther King, Jr.
I am grateful that Martin Luther King Jr. had a dream, because he inspired me to see past the color of skin and look instead at the content of a person's character.
In the late 1960's I moved with my husband to a big city on the east coast. He was serving in the Army and had been stationed nearby. To help out with our finances, I took a job at a local department store. I recall that I was a newbie in an unfamiliar city with local customs and appreciated what the locals shared with me, not realizing that I was about to learn a lesson in bigotry.
One day, a co-worker took it upon herself to strongly warn me not to talk to a person of different color and to never walk on the same side of the street. Growing up in a Christian home in the Pacific Northwest, I knew that I had been sheltered from some of the harsh realities of the world. Racism and intolerance was a concept that was unfamiliar to me. The brief segregation documentaries viewed in the classroom were my only introduction of bigotry. I never had to encounter first-hand what hate and bigotry actually sounded like. It was so hard to fathom all that the African American people had to endure.
After I got over the initial shock of her words, I replied that the best way I knew without being confrontational with her. I told her that, as humans, we are all the same and I would talk to and walk with whomever I choose. From that point on, she had nothing to do with me. I was okay with that, but I felt sad, because she had allowed hate to rule over her.
The way we treat one another has improved somewhat over the decades, but as a nation, we still have a long ways to go. I hope and pray that we are taking the lessons to heart.
May God's love be with you,
author, Kathy Goodhew
Do you have a reason to be thankful? If you think about it long enough, each of us can usually come up with a reason to be thankful. Therefore, as Thanksgiving Day approaches I grasp that I have taken my blessings a little too casually. Thus, I have remedied my unconcern by reflecting and compiling a list of reasons to be thankful.
You will notice that each thankful reason listed below corresponds with the eighteen days leading up to Thanksgiving Day. Each one is especially relevant to me. As you read, you may find some that you are able to identify with or you might even come up with more that relate to you. No matter, the main point of this exercise is the action of taking a moment to reflect about your own reasons to celebrate Thanksgiving Day.
I wish everyone a rich blessing of thankfulness and peace on this Thanksgiving Day celebration. I hope you will be the mirror that reflects God's powerful love as you reach out to others.
Blessings and Happy Thanksgiving,
Have you ever been afraid to go home to the one you love? Ask any abuse victim this question and pay close attention. You may see a hint of fear in their eyes as they claim that nothing is wrong and then quickly changing the subject. I know this because I have been there. I too, was a victim of spousal abuse.
Many victims and survivors carry around long-term, hidden scars and yet, they have an inner strength and resilience waiting to emerge as they protect their children and themselves. Because of the emotional scars, most abuse survivors will conceal their feelings of heartbreak, loneliness, or despair in order to survive their own personal battlefield.
If a survivor were to able to share their story it would be heart wrenching. and because they were courageous enough to break their silence, they would be brave warriors. However, there are some who cannot speak out, because they are no longer with us. The abuse I speak of is the use of verbal, physical, emotional and even sexual control or oppression with the intent of crushing the spirit of another human being.
Abuse, in all its forms, touches people of every culture, race, occupation, and age. Each year, millions of women, men, and children suffer from emotional or physical violence and many abuse victims have been led to believe that they deserve the abusive treatment. Domestic abuse will continue until our generation recognizes the destructive nature of domestic abuse.
Many victims are women and they may be afraid to talk openly out of fear of their abuser. Meanwhile, bystanders and the general public treat domestic abuse as something that is invisible. Because of this, the statistics are on the rise and we continue to disregard the long-term effect of domestic abuse.
Some might ask, “Why don’t they leave?” or “Do they enjoy being abused?” or "I wouldn't ever put myself in that situation to begin with." The better question might be, “Why do abusers terrorize and crush the one they profess to love?” Many victims do leave, but the real reasons for staying are more than any one statement can adequately explain. And yet, there is a possible reason that many people have not considered. It is the thing that brings paralyzing fear into a victims eyes. Many abuse victims don’t leave an abusive relationship because of ‘separation violence’. They fear that the risk of more severe violence could escalate sharply as the batterer realizes that he may lose control. Nearly three-fourths of domestic assaults were inflicted after the separation. Domestic violence is the leading cause of injury or death to abuse victims in the United States.
It is likely that most of us know someone who has been physically abused. This makes us slightly more attuned to the destructive nature of domestic abuse. We have a choice. We can continue to be silent or we can break our silence and speak up. Sadly, abuse will stay unless we decide that we’ve had enough. It’s up to each of us. Silence will only create more violence! It’s time to make a choice and take a stand. If you see an injustice, I hope you will join me when I say, “This is just plain wrong!”
If anyone feels broken inside, please know it should not define who you are or who you can become! Consider the lowly caterpillar that is transformed into a beautiful butterfly! Consider a baby in the safety of his or her mother’s womb, hesitant to leave only because he or she is unable to see the extraordinary world just ahead.
Please reflect on this;
No one should feel alone, thinking that there is nowhere to turn. It is simply not so, for God is beside you every moment of every day. There are paths to healing. Having faith in my Savior's constant love and faithfulness is my path, but even if you are not religious there are many agencies able to help. So go ahead and take that first step because it will lead to freedom from the chains of abuse.
Psalm 147:3 “He heals the brokenhearted and binds up their wounds.”
If we close our eyes and try to imagine beyond our nightmares, we’ll find
a loving God who promises HOPE and a new beginning! ~ by, Kathy Goodhew
I am a wounded healer and encourager. I know that my Savior loves me and you. He has given me hope and a purpose and I've been promised a new vision upon surrendering myself to Jesus. When I admitted to God that I could not handle doing things my way any longer, I found the courage to tell my story about spousal abuse in my book A Vision Beyond Abuse. I candidly shared about my broken past and my love for God with hope of bringing awareness about spousal abuse to a generation where the subject of abuse has gone unnoticed. My story focuses on one such path of healing. In the book, I vividly describe my personal struggle while trying not to lose hope for something better. Struck down, but not totally crushed, I worked at staying focused on my quest for the One who knows me better than I do. Lastly, I hope you will come along with me to find your own vision beyond abuse and never give up hope for a better future.
You can find my book on Amazon.com and at Tate Publishing's Bookstore: https://www.tatepublishing.com/bookstore/book.php?w=978-1-61739-599-4
Kathy Goodhew's book is published through Tate Publishing, a mainline publishing house dedicated to working with aspiring authors and giving their book its best chance in the marketplace. http://www.tatepublishing.com
Blessings, Kathy Goodhew
I have come to understand that the stories of Jesus’s crucifixion in all four gospels of the bible were written to pass the lesson on to us. If we imagine, maybe we will see ourselves in the crowd shouting, "Crucify him" or maybe even denying him three times as Peter did. Would we have mocked him or stood by and did nothing while the soldiers flogged him? The intention of trying to imagine is so that we place ourselves in the drama. It is then that we can better understand and be moved emotionally by the tragic events unfolding. We can learn that what happened to Jesus Christ is an accusation against humanity. We are all broken and weak, and we are all in need of God’s forgiveness.
[Humans throughout history have been capable of treating one another inhumanly. In our weakness and fear of ridicule or something worse, we humans have continually found ourselves not wanting to get involved or blindly going along with the mob, that in other times we might have opposed. Standing by and doing nothing is a human condition. I have often wondered and hoped about whether we can ever ascend above our human nature.]
As the day progressed, the sky darkened, and Jesus cried out in anguish when it seemed that God was nowhere near, but He never faltered from His absolute affirmation and trust in a faithful God. Throughout the gospels, Jesus's thirst, pain and suffering affirms that He was the same as you and me, and yet oh so much more! When I realize that He decided with purpose, to offer himself as a sacrifice to atone for my sins, I am struck with incredible humbleness to the point of trembling with awe. The moment He died on the cross, the temple curtain in half, revealing the end of our separation from God because of our sin. Jesus became our priest and our intercessor with God.
Looking at the cross reminds me of my own sin, and my own brokenness. Without Jesus to show me the way, I would be stumbling in the dark with no hope of redemption. The empty cross and tomb is my reminder of my savior being raised up and defying death and evil! He chose to be the final sacrificial lamb for you and me because His love for us was so great! He has shown that in the end, He is the victor. The battle will continue until He returns, so until then, I will continue to hope and pray that we can learn from that tragic day and aspire to want to change for the better towards one another. God gives us that opportunity as He invites us into a relationship with Him, through His gift of eternal peace, grace, mercy and love.
Kathy Goodhew, author
Happy Valentine's Day!
This is a shout-out for all kinds of love
For friendship - family - old friends - new friends - those who are hurting - those who are alone - those who are lost.
We express our love with many hugs and kisses. We soothe others hurt with our tears - our empathy - a strong shoulder - a listening ear, and of course - the healing power of laughter.
This thing called Love is made possible through the only One who loved us first- Christ Jesus. His love will never let you down nor will He abandon you. His faithfulness and grace is constant and never fails. As He has been, He will forever be.
Be of good cheer, for He is knocking at your door.
Poems for me are a personal and private thing, an intimate creation. I keep each one hidden away and share them rarely. Perhaps, that is why it has taken me three years to finally share this one. So, I consider this action today a big step. Today, I am posting a poem written soon after my first published book debuted.
My first book is titled, A Vision Beyond Abuse. It is my true account of experiencing and enduring an abusive relationship with a spouse who professed his love. My memoir begins like a bad tapestry and slowly becomes beautiful and uplifting as it pivot's around my awakening to God's plan for me.
This is my poem: 'Dark Night'
I sense a need for something greater than self. So, I am led by Christ's love to be an encourager as I share about His faithfulness and grace.