Bethel Grace Abbey Mission

This is the online outreach for Bethel Grace Abbey Mission. May our efforts to serve the hurting and homeless souls of Southern California reach to the level He has set for us. May His Glory shine through the darkness and be evident in all we do at Bethel Grace Abbey. These are only our humble beginnings, but through His love, we can move mountains. Thank you for joining us on our mission. May your life be as blessed as mine has become.
In His Loving Grace,
Jennifer Joy

Friday, January 31, 2014

Guilt Complex, Gone

I should recognize by now that if I start having troubled sleep, if I start to falter in my Walk, if depression begins to come upon me, then God is once again working his magic in my soul. For my soul upheavals are not without reward.

And, oh, how sweet the rewards when God troubles my soul.

For several weeks, I tossed and turned, having bad dreams about false accusations. These dreams tormented not only my sleep, but also my waking hours, because I did not know why I kept having this recurrent theme. No one has troubled me with lies and false blame in almost a year now.

In my past, I have suffered many false accusations. I won’t go into too much detail, but a person very dear to me had the habit of throwing me under the bus when she was caught in a lie. We were very close (or so I wished), but no matter how desperately I wanted to share  my most intimate secrets with her, I simply could not trust her. I could not trust that she would keep my secrets, and I could not trust that she would not twist my truth into something grotesque and punishing.

From all her lies and from others believing her lies, I have suffered horribly from a guilt complex since childhood.

On top of that, I also have suffered from Lyme disease since childhood. No one believed I was sick. No one believed I was almost always in severe pain. I was accused of being a hypochondriac, once again spurred on by the lies spread by my dearest loved one.

Adding insult to injury, Lyme is a very real disease caught in the ugly political-ness of the CDC and insurance red tape. The CDC is influenced by insurance lobbyists, with their single goal being to save themselves money, even at the expense of the American public. This is a whole ball of wax I don’t wish to get into, for its negativity, but if you are interested in learning more, I would suggest checking out the video, “Under Our Skin.” As a result of the insurance industry’s political agenda, I and other Lyme sufferers have been accused of lying and of being hypochondriacs. I have had a whole slew of medical professionals deny my pain and my illness, for years.

There are plenty of other people and issues I could add to this list of false accusations, but I won’t. I’m not saying that I have never been guilty of things. I am not perfect. Far from it. I have sinned plenty, but the guilt complex came about because of unwarranted lies and accusations.

It is a myth that if we have a guilty conscience, then we must be guilty.

The truth is often that we have suffered blame at the hands of others once too often.

In my final dream on the subject, I found myself standing before a long line of my accusers. Some I recognized, of course, but some I did not, because they belonged to the CDC and insurance industry, and also among them were medical professionals I did not immediately recognize. Fear and terror seized my heart as I stood alone in front of them. Then all of a sudden, Jesus was beside me. I did not have to look to my right to know He was there. His presence and His voice were unmistakable.

He said, “Tell the first one to step forward.”

I reluctantly motioned for her to come.

Jesus said, “Ask her to say what she came to say.”

I reluctantly asked, as tears threatened to escape.

She said her lies, cast her blame.

Then Jesus said, “Now, tell her she is lying, tell her that you forgive her, and then send her on her way.”

I did as He asked. My heart felt a tiny bit better.

She went to the end of the line, so that she could once again come forward with more lies and blame when her turn came again.

We went through several more people in the line, with Jesus asking me to tell each of them the same thing. I was starting to feel better about myself. Eventually, He simply said, “Tell them what for,” as each one stepped up. “Go ahead,” He lovingly encouraged, as He motioned their way.

When I awoke, my guilt complex was completely gone. I was free. My temporary fight with depression was gone.

Now, before you jump all over me about vindication, let me state that what Jesus was asking me to do in my dream had nothing to do with vindication. I know vindication flies in the face of Jesus’ teaching about turning the other cheek. But I did not argue my truth. I did not lash out at my accusers. I was calm in dealing with each one because I had my Savior by my side. I felt no need to vindicate myself with Jesus there, holding my hand. He simply told me to tell them I knew they were lying, forgive them, and send them on their way.

Through this dream, God closed the book on my guilty conscience.

When I woke up, The Holy Spirit then led me to read the book of Ezra. Here is the biblical truth I learned about false accusations:

In a quick summary, King Cyrus allowed some of the exiles to return to Jerusalem to rebuild the house of God, to fulfill the prophesy spoken by Jeremiah (Ezra 1:1-3), and he also returned the temple articles that King Nebuchadnezzar had taken (Ezra 1:7). It didn’t take long for enemies of the exiles to frustrate their plans (Ezra 4:4-16). During the reign of subsequent kings, they continued making things difficult for the builders of the temple. They launched a specific complaint in a letter to Artaxerxes about how Jerusalem had always been a rebellious and wicked city (Ezra 4:12), and so Artaxerxes issued an order to stop work, so that the city would not be rebuilt (Ezra 4:21). During the reign of Darius, the Jews once again began building the temple, having the support and guidance of the prophets, and their enyy6emies once again tried to stir up trouble (Ezra 5:2-3). In response, the Jews stated in a letter to King Darius that they were working on the temple and the city by the decree of King Cyrus. Their letter is found in verses 5:11-17. At the end of the letter, they ask King Darius to do a thorough search of the archives, so that Darius may discover the truth for himself. This truth is verified and Darius’ response is found in verses 6:3-12. King Darius not only upheld the decree of his predecessor, but he also ordered that the accusers pay the expenses for rebuilding from the royal treasury and the revenues of Trans-Euphrates. The accusers had to give everything the Jews needed for the construction and also for the burnt offerings. King Darius furthermore decreed that anyone who continued to make trouble would be put to death.

Wow! What a turnaround. When questioned by their accusers, the elders calmly stated their case, and the truth prevailed because God saw their suffering, and He provided relief as only He can.

God sees our suffering. God knows our pain. God knows when we have been wrongly accused, just as He knew that the Jewish elders had been wrongly accused of building without permission. The elders did not seek to vindicate themselves. They did not seek retribution for years of being maligned and kept from their mission. All they wanted was to continue rebuilding the temple, as God had asked. Then, God provided the means necessary to finish the task without any further interference.

It is beautiful, the workings of Our Lord. He touched deep within my pain and healed yet another wound. He is so good to me.

My prayer for you today is that you may find healing for your inmost wounds.

In His grace,

Jennifer Joy

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