Friday, June 4, 2010

Forgive? Her??

My mom called me last week. For those of you who may be new to the blog, my mom and I have been estranged for several years. She is a mentally ill alcoholic. One of the things she said in the voice mail message she left to me was, "You are everything that is wrong with the Christian faith. I am embarrassed of you."

I was upset. I was mad. Mad at myself as much as her, that I had listened to the message and not just deleted it. I was driving around running errands, and I was stewing. Dwelling. Making myself miserable. And I thought to myself, "I hate her. I really hate her."

I'd not said those words before, though I'd had grounds to do so. But a funny thing happened. Finally giving myself permission to say that did not make me feel better. It made me feel worse. And I felt like the devil smiled.

So this time I said out loud, "I forgive you, Mom." I felt a twinge in my heart. What was that? Could it be joy? I said it again, louder, "I forgive you, Mom." I said it twice more, than I started thanking and praising God that he forgives me. And I was filled with such abundant joy. And I haven't felt badly about that message again.

Does this mean we all live happily ever after? No. This is real life. I am still estranged from my mom. But I can still forgive her, even without her asking for it. And I can be joyful in spite of the pain, and because of the forgiveness.

Who can you forgive today that will not only free them from the debt of hurting you, but free yourself from the pain of the hurt as well?

Matthew 6:14, 15 -- For if you forgive men when they sin against you, your heavenly Father will also forgive you. But if you do not forgive men their sins, your Father will not forgive your sins.

Chatty Kelly

Wednesday, June 2, 2010

In Remembrance of....

Monday was Memorial Day. I explained to my six year old daughter what that meant. "Today is the day we remember the soldiers," I told her. "How can I remember them if I don't know them?" she asked.

From a six year old point of view, that is a very good question. How do we "remember" someone we don't know? For us, it was easy to resolve. I reminded her that her daddy was a soldier, and a veteran. She knew him. She excitedly replied, "That means my daddy is special to the earth!" That was good enough for a six year old. To tell her we are specifically remembering fallen soldiers would wait for a few more years.

"Do this in remembrance of me," Jesus told the disciples after breaking bread, and telling them its symbolism of his body being broken for them. He was reminding them that after he was resurrected to Heaven, that we should still break bread together, and should remember His sacrificial death so that we may have eternal life.

But do we remember?

To finish reading this post, join me over at Titus 2 in Action, where I am a featured guest contributor every other Wednesday, including today.

Titus 2 in Action

Chatty Kelly

Monday, May 31, 2010

God bless the USA

I'm proud to be an American, where at least I know I'm free.
And I won't forget the ones who died, who gave their life for me.
God Bless the USA, Lee Greenwood, 1984

We're leaving 70s music for today, because it's Memorial Day, and I think Lee Greenwood's God Bless the USA is the perfect song for a Memorial Day Musical Monday. While many folks will have cookouts, hit the pool, or visit shopping sales today, the real reason for Memorial Day is to remember and commemorate the US men and women who died in military service.

My husband is a Vietnam Veteran, and knows first hand the sacrifices that are made to serve our country by the military. His Military Academy room-mate died in Vietnam. He lost other friends as well.

The Bible says, " Greater love has no one than this, that he lay down his life for his friends." (John 15:13) Unfortunately, it's all too easy to forget about the sacrifices of others.

Jesus is another who made a sacrifice and gave his life for us. Just as the soldiers' sacrifices give us freedoms in the US, Jesus' sacrifice frees us from sin, death and the devil. His sacrifice on the cross, dying for our sins allows us to have eternal life.

I hope today you will think about the ones who died for your freedom. But I hope everyday, you will think about THE ONE who died for YOU.

Musical Musings:
1. Think about a way you can remember, reflect upon and honor our fallen military personnel today.
2. Say a prayer for military families today, including spouses and children of military.
3. Thank Jesus for the sacrifice He made for you.

Dear God, thank you for sending your son to die for me. There is no greater love then that. Help me to show love to others, like you have shown for me. Thank you, Lord, for the freedoms you allow us. May I remember daily what you have done for me. In Jesus name, Amen.

Rock On:
Go to and search the words free or freedom in the Bible. See all the ways that Christ has made you free. Praise God for them.

God Bless the USA, Lee Greenwood video:

Chatty Kelly