Suffering joyfully. #3

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This I think will conclude my posts on Suffering joyfully. It’s 230am at the moment,  and I was so close to just sleeping. Then I was lead to my Word for Today app ( an awesome app with daily scripture studies and Amazing writings for upliftment. Look it up on play app and check it out, download it even) 

But through it I was able to find a verse from the bible. It spoke to me and where im at and is the icing on the cake for what I’ve been posting on in the last couple of posts.
I took a picture of a section from Lamentations- the bible was given to my aunty in 1988, my aunty used the bible as her own and passed it down to my mum in 1993 (or earlier), and then mum used it to study from… It’s amazing when i go through it and see verses that they have highlighted and made notes on…. It’s Amazing how relevant it is in this day in age and to me; at a different time in life compared to mum and aunty.  I love it!

Here’s the snapshot of the section in Lamentations: 3 I came across, hopefully it brings everything together for what you can be going through maybe.

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This verse solidifies so many things: if you don’t know of God, you aren’t one to Pray or be spiritual, or maybe youve been way to busy to Pray again and you’ve put God on hold… This verse says that God understands, and He loves you too much to not give you a million and more opportunities to begin again.

God Bless! x

Suffering joyfully Pt.2

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Been quite a long time since I’ve blogged and I’m blaming assignments and life lol…. But I did have the most hectic last couple of weeks of university, and every time I came to add to this post, I always end up not finishing…. Sometimes I just don’t wanna write on it, and so every time I’ll start another post and try to write on something else, it’s like God pushes me write back to finish this lol

since my last post I’ve had an urge to keep writing on suffering joyfully. In that last blog, I wrote about when I experienced a pretty tough day and how that inspired me to understand again the meaning of “purposeful suffering”. I felt inspired to reassure my self and hopefully others, that suffering at times, is God allowing us to know right from wrong, it’s believing in Gods timing and when we suffer with a faithful heart God promises to compensate.

Pain = God saying: “I will personally go with you.”

Personally. Meaning, there is no battle he wont win for us. Not a tear we shed is going to go to waste… Not a feeling of sadness He will ever delight in. That’s the way God works… He is a Loving God because He we are  precious, so not a thought of worry or pain does God want us dwelling in…. And although we are guaranteed more days of suffering (by default because we live in an imperfect world)… God promises that we will never stay there!

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In saying that…

I’ve learnt quite harshly just in the way our world is, that there is so much suffering definitely not of God. This type of suffering comes from abused Free-Will.
….And man do I see it everywhere, daily, and sometimes even in my own actions. It hurts every time I stop to think about how in control we all are of the amount of pain caused by the things we say, we do, and the things we ignore.

Poverty. War. Bullying. Abuse. Infidelity. Lies. Pride that causes insecurity. Insecurity that feeds inflicted pain.  Greed. The unkind words. Neglect. A parent’s pain.

….so many things that I can’t think of right now… But basically anything that we do that goes against “loving others as much as we Love ourselves”….
And I don’t say it lightly,  cause I fall into the same type of actions sometimes. But when I had to think about suffering and really really think about it…. I’ve come to realise that the type of Suffering that is of God for His individual plan for us feels different…like, You know that everything happening ‘in a worldly view’ doesn’t look good, yet in your heart and within your spirit, it’s like you feel that it won’t last Long…. That in a weird way, it’s all meant to be. The type of pain that feels peaceful at the same time. That type of suffering is joyous.
But on the flip side,  is the suffering we produce. And even that feels different. It feels dirty lol. Its the pain that hurts the most, pain that stops us in our tracks and separates us from God. It feels wrong, and looks ugly. That kind of pain that produces little hope.
But what makes both types of suffering similar is that God promises to eventually get us out of them when we lay it on Jesus to carry the burden on His cross and we believe in Salvation. God demolishes suffering caused by the world because He loves those he created.

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The love of others for others inspires me so much.  I believe so much that there is plenty of goodness in even the most selfish people because goodness is innate, love had already been embedded. And I think that we all have the capablity to reach lower than ourselves to Glorify a God higher than us! I so dream of that opportunity and  praying for God to give me that window to give back and help others…. But at the same time, I think that all that is required to stop pain and suffering for others, is.. loving God to Love ourselves… Then from there the domino effect! The filter of knowing this ‘love’ that fits everything into place!

Love this little piece of writing I found on the net:

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Having this attitude sets the spirit to branch out… 🙂

And the final pic for this blog is one I took yesterday evening on the way home. It was so rainy,  and the whether was pretty grey; I enjoyed showering in the rain lol but in a matter of minutes of all the heavy rain… I managed to capture this shot. The sky was something else, beauty at its purest.

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(Yeap, take a look at how beautiful South Auckland, New Zealand is haha 😉

Suffering joyfully.

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I love this pic I found on the net. I love it because It reminds me of my hard days. Those really down days we all face, where you’ve held the faith for what seems like really long, then more challenges are piled and you’re left thinking…. Why? Then just when you think everything’s going down hill… God pulls through with what seems like an overflow of blessing.

It’s funny how God works sometimes to make me understand what it is meant by suffering joyfully. Just last week I found myself trying to fight the tears as I stood at a bus stop and had to listen as an old man (who I’m assuming wasn’t all there mentally) verbally abused me and started yelling out racial remarks. Believe it or not, it didn’t hurt me. I knew he was ill. And because of the type of nurse I’m wanting to be when I graduate I figured, ‘thanks Lord, I probably need to practice blocking it out. And not letting it get to me.”.… What actually bruised me was how pretty tired I was with how the day was going anyway. A few hours earlier I had to deal with pretty difficult people, so my day was already challenging…. I was fighting the tears because I had asked God earlier to turn my day around yet just as I was ready to go home that all had to happen.
Felt like everything was getting worse and worse. Athough I knew God was covering me, I struggled trying to fight back the devil trying to stir up and manipulate my emotions so that I could find a reason to blame God and doubt.

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My situation wasn’t the first time I’ve felt that way, and definitely was not the first time I endured hardship. In fact, hardship occurs daily and to everyone. But why do we experience pain? And why is it that some people, no matter how much devotion is done, still face challenges….. And why would God encourage us to keep believing and to stay strengthened in the toil of our resilience?

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It’s sometimes hard to explain ‘suffering’ because God has His reasons that are different for everyone. What’s important to remember is that we experience pain for the better of ourselves.
For a child to know what is wrong, they need to be disciplined. In order to know Good, we need to know what is bad. It’s sort of the same thing. Pain is endured because it builds us to be better people, to build the Character of Jesus in us. It is purposeful.

But one might ask; then why do I continue to Pray for a break though and more challenges still come my way? To me it’s sort of the same thing as trying to teach a child how valuable obedience is. Just as a parent won’t award a child a lolly for every time they walked in the room, God won’t hand us what we pray about until His timing is right,  and we have come to see the value of believing that he can Answer every prayer,  and that basically He is all we need.  Tusting in God means that we endure pain, we endure hurt, and live with struggle because WE KNOW that what awaits us at the end is more than what we expected. Better than what we thought we wanted, and more amazing than how we put it all together in our minds.

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Suffering joyfully means that there’s no excuse for self-pity or feeling like nothing can be achieved. It also doesn’t mean that God expects that we walk 24/7 with fake smiles and pretentious joy. Suffering joyfully is believing that God will never give us what we can’t handle. It means that, if we seek Him diligently we will be able to notice that He has equipped us fully. Not to go endure hardship ourselves, but to realise that He WANTS us to hand over our suffering, and allow for Him to take it all

I’m going off on a tangent as I do with my blogs lol but what I think is important to know is this:

If you’re in a situation right now that is really really tiring you out. You’ve prayed over it, or if youre not religious,  and you’ve tried all you could to make things right. Things seem to be moving slow, and strength is what you need at the moment.  Remember that all myseries can be  stripped in the initiating of prayer and faith. One of my favourite verses in the bible is in 2 Corinthians: 12

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Faith in pain and Hope through suffering is not a band-aid solution, it’s a promise that if you can just find it in you to wait on God; you’re reward will be greater.

If you’re feeling like a change, start now. Delight in anything that is disheartening.

This idea of suffering is so vast and so many people have beautiful ways of explaining it. My way of coming to understand this all and blog about it, came because when I faced some of the worst situations in my life, it took the depths of me to say: “Yes Lord, I surrender it all.” – I didn’t need to have tons of faith for it, but saying those words seemed to be enough for God to work and change things for me!

Some songs that initiate things for me:

Israel Houghton or Cece Winans: I surrender all.
And when you want empowerment lol Cece Winans: Waging War!

So many other songs of encouragement by the way not just those two lol let me know if you have any! 🙂

Love can be experienced and Joy is new joy is new each day!  Believe it! God Bless x

Good things await at the end…

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Never quite believed in the saying “brighter things await at the end of the tunnel” (or however it goes lol) and this was Because if I was having a pretty faith-testing or stressful week I never wanted to know the outcome because I would be in fear of things turning out not the way I wanted it to.  I would pray for the strength to handle stressful situations,  or for God to take care of what was burdening me but as soon as I finished praying Id go back to feeling anxious, fearful and let my thoughts eat at me…… It was Faith without faith. And I put limits on God cause I made the situation bigger than Him.

In the week just gone (on a Monday) the head of department of the School of Nursing set up a meeting with me to discuss the results of an exam that was compulsory for all students to pass.  Everyone I spoke to had already got their marks except me so I was thinking the ultimate worse! Thought I was going to be told that I had to drop out and start again next year, thought I needed to repeat my degree- every negative thought was on replay. I did so much praying but I felt like I was only praying to make me feel better, like I knew God was listening but he wasn’t able to get me out of the situation. Sort of the feeling you get when youve done something bad, your hoping not to get in trouble but deep down you know you will, there was just no way of getting out of it.  That was me.
– I asked God to spare me of the possibilities. Because I knew….that exam was one I never studied for, didn’t put the effort in because my time management is shocking lol, and so in my thinking: “God was going to let me live with the consequences of a lack of commitment in a degree that I was only placed in because He put me there”…... So like a guilty child who knew they should of done right by their parent, I was asking God for a second chance, I was not ready to let a lack of study and just pure laziness determine my whole length of study at University.

So long story short (because I have a bad habit of going on and on lol), two days before the meeting (scheduled for the Friday of that week) my sister had posted up a link on the story shared by the wife of Joel Osteen (search him up on YouTube, he speaks volumes of Wisdom and love for God). The story described a woman of faith. In a nut shell, she seeked healing and saw an opportunity to be healed by Jesus, who was walking through the town…. She suffered years of having the illness consume her spirit, she wanted to be free. Crowds gathered around Jesus, but she pushed through the crowds with faith that held her determination to reach him. She managed to touch the end of His cloak and instantly she was healed. Of all those surrounding Jesus, he felt her touch, and recognised the power of her Faith in Him. The relevance of the story was quite overwhelming. Two days before a meeting I was extremely worried about, I had God remind me that his grace was nevereneding, and that my faith needed to match. But believing wasn’t just me subconsciously asking, i needed to trust confidently, like the story of the woman in the bible, that God will take care of me.

At the end, the meeting was no more than 5mins, she gave me an opportunity to complete a section in the exam paper I got wrong,  and with her smile she reassured me that she believed in me. And to think that  hours before that I was just about in tears.
—Straight after, I got told I got a job with the university (one I desperately needed). God answered more than one prayer all at once.

My situation is one of so many times God has come through for me.
I saw the way my fears tried to eat me up. I saw Grace give me another chance and if I continued to neglect my studies God could leave me to live the consequences to teach me a lesson lol.
…. I was reminded again that I can’t put limits on God anymore. Its like telling a person who can walk that they couldn’t.

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I posted in my last blog that believing makes things possible, and I’m more than willing to admit I fell short of knowing that during that last week
…..What I forgot to mention in that last blog, is that believing ain’t easy- it takes the core of your heart to keep the faith, it can be tiring, its hard, frustrating at times and challenges even the most faithful.
…..But what’s beautiful is that God only requires a mustard seed.

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He had to let me go through a really hard week to remind me that he never breaks promises!

I understand that God won’t always get me out of situations like that of which I experienced. I understand that Grace enbled me to recieve the blessing. I realise that Faith isn’t clear-cut, I can’t always depend on seeing things physically just to be reassured. I need to Pray with an Honest heart, take my prayer seriously and know that as soon as I say “Amen” it will be done.

I had a tough week for sure, but after Friday I welcomed more blessings. Got to hang out with my family after so long, didn’t have transport to my tutorial in the city and to a friends birthday and had it all covered! And I had a good time witnessing a good friend turn 21!

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Although I feel unworthy Lord, Thankyou for walking this journey with me, for your Love that covers a multitude of my sins….

All things are made possible because we believe.

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when I was little I use to believe that when my tooth came out and I put it under my pillow a tooth fairy would come and collect it in exchange for money or something nice. I believed it more because what I didn’t know is that every time I’d place my tooth under my pillow my grandmother or mum (whichever one was tough enough to move my big head away 😂) would lift my pillow take my tooth and put money or chocolate there. This one day, I put my tooth under my pillow and my Nana put a Chocolate bar underneath. Obviously she underestimated my intelligence lol because I recognised that the chocolate bar she put there was the one I ate before  I slept hahaha so I started doubting. And of course, I was pretty heart broken ….but in finding out that toothfairies weren’t real and all my fallen teeth were missing lol, something else happened that stayed with me for life.

My Nana took me outside with the tooth she took and told me to make a wish and to chuck it onto the roof of the house. Apparently it was a Samoan thing that was good? …. Anyways, I was making my wish (wished to win the lotto no lies lol) while nana was standing next to me and then she stopped me suddenly and told me to wish that I would continue to Love God and know a Love like God’s.

In my child-like thinking, I saw that one wish I was asked to make as a ticket to getting exactly what I wished for; so why was she asking me to wish for something that wasn’t as important as something like … Winning the lotto?  I thought, man … She was taking this Belief in God way to serious.

I look back now, and I get overwhelmed with why that memory is so vivid in my mind. What stands out the most to me was the amount of belief nana had in God. She believed whole heartedly that if I can continue to Love God, that was  all I needed above wishing on more money or getting something I’ve always wanted. She believed that my life can be full of riches if I loved a God who gave her the riches .

And what’s funny … Is that I never understood why she took God seriously until I started to see the way He intervened in parts of my life and changed it completely. Then what blew me away even more was when i opened up the Bible that was written so many centuries ago and saw that the same way he intervened in those peoples lives was what I was experiencing and what I was seeing in real life .

I get why people might think that me an.  other christians take this Belief in God seriously… But until you Believe that it’s possible to have a Love like God’s,  it will be hard to understand fully.

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Newbie

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(die hard Beyonce fans, I’m not mocking her don’t worry lol)

Ever felt weird after doing something out of the ordinary?…. Like, the first ever time you yelled at someone and you knew that they knew it wasn’t you to yell. And then afterwards you’d feel like weird or awkward about doing it, and wished you didn’t do it. (am I even making sense? Lol).  that feeling was me this morning when I realised I “blogged” :’) was so tempted to like delete this and pretend like I didn’t act all macho the night before. Lol but no. “I’m  committed, I’m committed” lol

For real though, I have no clue what im getting myself into with blogging,  I don’t know enough about it. Like, is it safe? What do I write about? How often? So I decided; I’m going to write when I feel like there’s a need to,  and I’ll write for Purpose. It would be real good to know I make a difference with someone, somewhere even with my grammatically incorrect sentences. 😂:roll:

Challenging you to try something new. Don’t weigh it up or compare it to how you Think others will respond to it. Just do it. Do something you Know is not a ‘you’ thing to do. I Promise, whatever it Is will contribute to something or someone.

First step out of my comfort zone.

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“Didn’t think I’d be here if it weren’t for the spirit in me that kept saying; go. Use what you have to do something…”

So I’m Giovanna. And I’m new to this whole blog thing. I’m in love with a guy named Jesus, with my self at times (haha), and heaps of food!

Obviously there’s way more to me than food and ❤ing myself (sometimes)…  but the more I go on about it the bored-er (lol) I get and then I’ll lose interest and stop blogging :mrgreen:

I used that not-so-charming pic of myself cause it sort of represents what, and where I’m taking this new blogging thing. Had God tell me a while back to start blogging… He said: “Giovanna, you are pretty good at writing to yourself,  do something about it”…And so I didn’t 😂 lol and just yesterday He said: “Giovanna, not only are you disobedient but you’re not good at committing” – legit, that hurt my soul. Cause I saw a flash back of all the times of when i said I’d do something, for myself or for someone else… And I was pretty good,  I started, lol. And never completed it. Or if I did, it was way too late. My heart hurt cause then I was like, wow. What makes me want to get married? How can I say I want kids when I can’t commit to a diet?  Or organising my school work?  Hahaha had to laugh about it, but as dramatic as it sounds… It is waaaayyyy too true.

So long story short,  I made God a vow that I’ll try my best to commit and obey. I think I was at a point where I wanted to see change and I was bench-sitting waiting for God to be miraculous where he made it clear that Faith without Action is pointless. I tried to decide whether this change was because I wanted to prove to God that I could be obedient and Faithful, or was this the action of a willing heart!? …… I figured, God doesn’t need anyone to prove anything… He already knows it all! So really I’m responding to a call towards Purpose ; as part of my purpose, I need to know more about myself, but to do it I have to step outside my comfort zone. I’m naturally a Private person, and never ever would I have agreed to something as exposing as Blogging. BUT I feel like this is intiating something new. All I need is a canvas for my thoughts, whoever reads it, reads it because they needed to. And if these blogs stay unread that’s okay too 😭 hahaha… I’m on my way to Victory, learning obedience and making a commitment! All that comes with this lil journey, will come for a reason! 😇

I have rivers of things too say, got absolutely no clue how this is all going to unfold but it will. 🙂

It’s obvious now, that I’m quite Spiritual. A lot of what comes next could be more of my conversations with God, but also on my thoughts and opinions and just life in general. Id never do it otherwise,  but here’s to STEPPING OUT OF MY COMFORT ZONES….. Nekminit 😂😂😂😎 kidding.
P.s my Friends and I have a consensus, that my grammar and spelling and English altogether is Terrible (so reader or non-reader lol bear with me)

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