Heart of Refuge

Unveiling The Hidden Beauty Of Your Heart

Month: February 2016

The One who lifts My Head

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But you, O Lord, are a shield for me, my glory, and the lifter of my head ~ Psalms 3:3 (Amplified Bible)

I remember during a certain period of my life that the only glory I had was that of the Lord. I fasted until I could fast no more, I prayed and prayed and prayed until I felt I could pray no more. But you know in the midst of the intense onslaught of the enemy the Lord showed me and covered me with his glory. His glory brought an unusual peace, it became my shield, defence and shelter.

During times of pain and hopelessness the Lord was my glory! When I cried and could not see my way out the Lord was my glory! When I felt like giving up the Lord was my glory!

He was and still is the shield and protector of my heart. Sometimes I don’t know what to say in prayer and all I can do is thank him from my heart,  my heart that he covers with his love.

I would like to encourage you dear heart, that Jesus wants to be your glory and strength. You will daily face challenges but be assured that daily he will lift your head.

Be Blessed!

 

God’s Best Kept Secret ~ Zenice Harasymchuk

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Image courtesy of Zenice Harasymchuk

One in three women are victims of domestic violence worldwide. That is too many women in my opinion. Hi, my name is Zenice and I am a 48 year old survivor, mother and disciple of Jesus Christ. My life has not been easy, it has been a series of one type of abuse after another but about eight years ago I began a journey with Jesus that has transformed my life.

Transparency and vulnerability in the church is important to me. Many churches don’t talk about domestic violence. My question to those churches is why? It’s a topic that many would like to sweep under the rug as though it were not a huge and growing problem. Think about this: there are upwards of 20 people per minute who are suffering from physical violence by an intimate partner, and that is just in the United States! That is just one type of abuse! So in the last hour, 1200 people were physically abused by their intimate partner. That’s too many.

There are so many types of abuse: child abuse, physical, emotional, mental, financial and sexual abuse, elder abuse, human trafficking and bullying. This is out of control. The church is silent on most of these things although human trafficking is growing in awareness. I cannot sit in my church any longer and be silent. I know that God has called me to help those who are broken and abused. My role is to walk alongside and point them to Jesus who is the Healer. My passions are Jesus, prayer, revival, awakening and helping women. How do these things come together? By being the church to this lost and dying world. Being a voice to bring awareness to the Body of Christ to no longer turn a blind eye to those who are being abused in their midst.

I have a dream of seeing women who have survived abusive situations to rise up and share their stories and come alongside the women who are in abusive relationships now or trying to get out. I believe that Jesus heals us from all of the effects that abuse can leave as long lasting scars on our lives whether it be depression, PTSD, suicidal thoughts, anxiety or isolation and fear. Jesus alone is our healer. On January 11, 2009 Jesus healed me and the healing was instantaneous but I had to learn how to walk out my healing. I had to learn how to live a life that didn’t include pain, fear, depression and suicidal thoughts. This journey has taken me seven years but today I am an on fire disciple of Jesus dedicated to seeing women set free from bondage to the effects of abuse.

I am at the beginning stages of starting a ministry in my region that is what I believe to be different than what is available now. My desire is to begin with a support group that will really be more than a support group. I’ve been in support groups before and I only see that people talk about their issues and nothing changes. I believe the missing element is Jesus. I believe there needs to be prayer and worship along with education and support. I pray that this will not just be for my region but that others will take this to their regions as well. One in three women worldwide are victims of domestic violence. How many will the church reach? Let’s get started now.

The link below shares Zenice’s social media and contact information.

http://en.gravatar.com/losing4christ

Thank You💞

  

Others see what you don’t see

At times having to take a good look at ourselves can be a painful process but it can also be rewarding.

The Johori window is a tool which is used to understand how the world sees us. There are things about our personality that we do not see but others can see. We all have blind spots in our personalities.

How do we respond when those close to us speak the truth to us in Love. Do we go into denial or do we become offended? For a moment step back and just think about what someone has said. Have you heard the same comment said about you before. Is there a pattern that keeps being repeated?

I experienced this several times and I decided not to become offended but took a step back and said are these people seeing something about me that I am not seeing?  I decided to pray about it and make changes. In the end it all worked out for my good.

If you have heard the same comment repeated to you about areas of your personality don’t become offended step back, think and pray about it and make the nessary changes. In the end it will work out for your good.

God’s Best Kept Secret introducing Dr Lanette Kincaid

image courtesy of Dr Lanatte Kincaid 

Beaten before I was beaten

Hello My name is LaNette Kincaid and I’m the founder of Women With Gifts and I’m the VOICE for both sexual abuse and domestic violence. God gave me the vision of creating a platform to speak openly about my past but I ran from this vision for along time because the pain was so deep and to help others meant telling my story and this time telling it without shame.

My story isnt really different from any other women in the world. The only difference from my story and the next person is I’m telling my story and most women will die trying to hide their story of abuse. Before I was ever physically abused I abused myself mentally. I was molested at the age of 12 and raped by the age of 19 which you can read about in detail in my upcoming book.

I named this article Beaten Before I Was Beaten because I beat myself up mentally well before my physical and sexual abuse experiences started. As a child I saw my mother beaten by the man that was supposed to love her. It didnt stop there….I saw two of my aunts with bruises and sometimes broken bones from their spouses. After seeing so much domestic violence at such a early age, I equated being loved with being beaten by the person  who loved you. So mentally I was prepared for being BEAT because in my mind I was already beaten down and probably already gripped with low self-esteem.

I stayed in my situation of being abuse because I didn’t know any better. Its a known fact that when you know better you do better. I also stayed in my situation because it was my way of creating the greatest façade known to man.. It was my way of painting a white fence for a house that was run down and delapatated. So basically I stayed in my abusive relationships for those who were watching. For the people that didn’t care about me or my well-being but pretended to just to see the outcome of my downfalls…Yes I stayed for them. I was too ashamed to be that family member who just couldn’t get their life right-AGAIN. Even after I was beat up physically I beat myself again mentally not trying to leave but beating myself up trying to figure out how to make myself stay comfortably and make the other people around me happy.

I’m now the voice of domestic violence and sexual abuse because no little girl ever deserves to live in fear the way I did. Every women is beautiful and doesn’t need the accent of a black eye or bruises to intensify their beauty. No women should every die by the hands of a fists.

In closing I would like to thank Heart of Refuge for accepting me as a person and sharing my story. It is my prayer that my story and my book will save another life.

Image courtesy of Dr Lanatte Kincaid

LaNette Kincaid is a marine wife and mother of two. LaNette is the Chief Executive Officer to Just Pearlz, a fashion and jewelry company and of Vendor’s Preferred, a business consultant company. LaNette founded both Vendors Preferred and Just Pearlz shortly after graduating from Texas Wesleyan University and receiving a Bachelor’s Degree in Sociology with emphasis Criminal Justice.  she is also founder of WomenWithGifts.com

 

In addition to being an entrepreneur and a volunteer, LaNette is an author, radio personality, motivational speaker, business and fashion expert. Currently LaNette contributes to several fashion and business publications .

LaNette is a strong advocate of religion, high education and family and has been recognized for the following skills: Public speaking, writing, business planning, business management, creativity, event planning, social media, sales and marketing.

LaNette Kincaid recently received the  “Pearl” award from Perfected Magazine and was noted as the best blogger of the year by Examiner.com (2012)

How to Forgive Yourself ~ Letting Go of the Past Part 2 

Letting Go of your Past is a key step to walking in self forgiveness. Here are a few key points to consider if you are struggling in this area.

  1. Realise that you are not  perfect.
  2. Do not dwell on past mistakes. The key word here is dwell because dwelling on the past strips you from living in the present. Your life becomes stagnant.
  3. Plan for a bright future today by not being stiffed by the past.
  4. Investigate your past choices. What emotional triggers do you have? Investigate how your emotions during the event that led up to the incident that caused you to not be able to forgive yourself. What were your feelings?

It is important to realise  that forgiving yourself is crucial to enjoying a bright future. The chain of guilt shame and embarrassment can weight heavy on your spirit and emotions. You deserve better and you deserve to be free of this weight. Do not let anyone keep you bound to your past because you do deserve to experience freedom and liberty in Jesus.

Take a moment to pray and ask the Holy Spirit to help you forgive yourself.

 

Communicating forgiveness to Yourself and Others. Part 3

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Scriptures: Matthew 6:12-15    Mark 11:25

Communicating forgiveness to yourself and others is vital for you to be able to embrace your future. Prayerfully consider the following three points as you take this important journey.

  1. Let people into your life. If you need to ask for help to help you forgive yourself and other then look for it. A few years ago I had to get that help as I could not forgive myself for things that had taken place in my past. I thank God that I did, because it untied the invisible chains of guilt and shame and released me into my God given future.
  2. Write forgiveness letters. In the past I have prayerfully written a list of people that I need to forgive. The list was so long I was embarrassed!!! Try it and then take the list to God in prayer and give each person to him and ask him to help you release them from you heart. Remember forgiveness is between you and God!
  3. Ask for forgiveness from others.  If you feel that you have wronged someone ask them to forgive you. It can help to resolve issues and free you in the process.

My prayer for you is that as you take each of these steps that you will truly experience the freedom self forgiveness and forgiving others brings.

God’s Best Kept Secret!

  

There are so many people who have gifts and talents that lay dormant in there spirit. Gifts and talents that the world is waiting to be blessed by. That’s why I called my guest blogging feature “God’s Best Kept Secret”  (click onto the page God’s best kept secret, at the top of my blog for more information)

These people go to work, look after their families, go to school and basically live their lives. But there is a creative part in them, that is a true expression of whose God created them to be. Be it singing, writing, painting, sewing whatever, that creativity needs to be shared with the world

What is your gift? What is that creative part of you? Are you hiding it because of fear of what people will say? Are you worried that if you share it people may not like it and reject you? Listen if people reject your gift they are rejecting the person who gave you that gift.

Do not be afraid to shine in your sphere of influence. Matthew 5:15 ~ 16 says

” Neither do men light a candle, and put it under a bushel, but on a candle stick; and it giveth  light unto all that are in the house. Let your light so shine before men that they may see your good works, and glorify your father which is in heaven.”

Are you hiding your light in a secret place? Is it just you enjoying your gift? Remember your gift is to bring light to others so it can iluminate the dark areas of their lives. Jesus came and shared His light so we can have abundant life and light and He expects us to do the same.

So dear heart dust off your candle stick and prepare to shine because you are one of God’s best kept secret.

 

God’s Best Kept Secret Series introducing Beatrice Byemanzi

 At His Feet By Beatrice Byemanzi

“I am a wife and mom”. I am a lawyer” I am a writer”…The words we use to describe ourselves are usually about the role we play in society, not really about ourselves: Us. WHO WE ARE, beyond the roles and responsibilities…

You see, little girls are taught to nurture from the day they can hold a doll. We play mommy, and somehow before we know it, our value is pegged to what we can do for others.

We are celebrated for our upright behavior, good grades, acceptable manners…the things we do.

These are great things to celebrate. But if our identity is attached mostly to what we can do, then we are in trouble, because the things we can do are both temporary and limited.

Unfortunately, we carry this attitude into our relationship with our Father – God. We start to measure ourselves by what we can do FOR Him; how many religious meetings we attend, how much scripture we can quote, as opposed to what He has done for us.

I truly believe that the most important role of a child of God is to receive His love.

We are not able to give what we have not received. If we want to be givers of LOVE, we must receive love from Love Himself constantly. And that requires a complete change of mentality.

One of my favorite scriptures about what God really values in our relationship with Him is the story in Luke 10:38-41 about Mary, Martha and Jesus.

Martha and Mary are sisters, and are friends of Jesus. Martha invites Jesus over to her home, and she lives with her sister Mary. When Jesus gets there, Mary sits at His feet to hear His words, and Martha, according to the Bible is “distracted with much serving”.

Martha asks Jesus “…do you not care that my sister has left me to serve alone? Therefore tell her to help me.”

Jesus’ answer in verse 41 is “And Jesus answered and said to her, “Martha, Martha, you are worried and troubled about many things. 42 But one thing is needed, and Mary has chosen that good part, which will not be taken away from her.”

That’s it. Never replace relationship with service

God calls us first to have a relationship with Him. That’s the one thing that cannot be taken away from us. And He says it is the one thing that is needed.

He also refers to our need to serve as a distraction. Serving God is great, and we should do it. But it should never become the definition of our relationship with Him. Service should be a result of relationship with the Father.

The world (and the church at times) will celebrate our service to God more than our relationship with Him, but we must remember that Jesus said “one thing is needed”- relationship. That is the fuel for service.

God is interested in you. Not what you can give Him.

Our labor for God can be taken away. But our relationship cannot. However if all we know is service, once it goes, we are left bitter, empty and alone.

Choose that good part that will NOT be taken away from you.

How do you define yourself; is it first as a child of God or a servant of God?

What if everything you do for God was taken away? Would you still be ok? What truly defines you?

You are an heir. A daughter of the King. Don’t compete to be named a servant.

 

Beatrice has been married for 7 years,  she has two girls, ages five and two. She pastors with her husband at one of the locations within Worship Harvest Ministries in Uganda. Her passion is adding value to people, mostly through communication: speaking and writing.

You can follow her on:

Facebook Page – Beatrice Byemanzi – Bee3

Twitter – @Bee3Byemanzi

Blog – bee3blog.wordpress.com

 

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