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Pain and Providence


THIS MONTH'S THEME: R.E.A.L. MEN



Have you ever "cussed" someone out (saying this in my mind with my Southern drawl) without ever "cussin" them out? Ready for a transparent moment? Let's go... My use of curse words was almost non-existent until my second marriage. I did not realize it at the time, but I was subconsciously using a common phrase to justify my actions. "Hurt people hurt people." Our emotional brawls were intense. I could not fight back with my fists, but I could with my words. They were the only weapon I had. Can a woman in pain still affirm her man? In the middle of a recent conversation with a colleague, I said something that after all these years encapsulates the primary thing I wish I had done differently in my former marriage: I wish I had prayed over my marriage like I prayed over my book. Lord, this is not just my story, it's our story - yours and mine. Be the cloud that goes before me and the fire at my back protecting me. ~My "book" prayer GOD 'n You would never have existed except for providential prayer. My prayers for my marriage were more feeling, less faith. In order for me to let God heal my pain in the wilderness so I could speak life and not death, it would have required that my prayers be more providential and less emotional. prov·i·den·tial adjective

  1. occurring at a favorable time; opportune.

  2. involving divine foresight or intervention.

Please understand, I prayed for my husband, my marriage, our love, our future, etc, etc, etc... but I have to ask myself in this present day did I pray over it. And yes, saints, I pleaded the blood of Jesus. I anointed my household. I labored before God on behalf of my marriage. But I have come to believe there are Passover seasons and wilderness seasons and they require a different kind of prayer life. A relationship is unchartered territory, a wilderness. No matter how much you think you know about the other person, you never see reality until you are wading in thick sand under high heat. Sometimes, you need to pray like you are in a wilderness, because with relationships you are. The blood on the doorpost in Egypt protected the firstborn in Passover, but it did not in the wilderness. It was a cloud (God's supernatural lookout and guidance) in the daytime going before Israel and a fire (God's supernatural protection, warmth and comfort) at night protecting them that navigated the tribes through forty years of wilderness. Praying providentially into a relationship instead of emotionally about it allows Christ to set the atmosphere instead of you. My prayers seemed endless when it came to praying about the atmosphere between me and those it affected. Those prayers provoked God to use the book to heal rather than hurt. I stored up timber in prayer about that book, and through it God affirmed every person affected, including my ex-husband. He will do the same for you. Today, both my ex and I are good. Better than good. God healed both of us, taught both of us, and I believe forgave both us for the battles we fought. Our relationship after divorce became the friendship it should have always been. I do not know if we would have stayed together, but I do know now the journey would have been different. Man or woman, we all desire to be supported, affirmed, respected, lifted up. Appreciated. This is not just your relationship, it's God's, too (or is it?). If you want to use your words for good and not evil, want to exist in an environment where healing is providential, provoke the Holy Spirit to be the cloud going before you and the fire at your back protecting you. Be intentional in your prayers to a providential God.

I hope you have been blessed so far by the R.E.A.L. Men series. I admit it has ministered to me in ways I did not expect. What about you? Reply back and let me know. In the meantime, we close out in love next week! See you then.






 

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About Phillipa

AUTHOR | NON-PROFIT FOUNDER

MINISTRY COACH

LOVER OF CHOCOLATE
Phillipa Williams has dedicated her life to building God’s kingdom. A former programs director for new member and Christian education with over 36 years’ experience in leadership and discipleship, she has equipped thousands to serve God and community.

She is the Founder/CEO of GOD n Me International, a faith-based social enterprise equipping and inspiring others for spiritual intimacy, transparency, and destiny. Her blog, godnme.org, was named one of the "Top 10 Black Christian Blogs, Websites, Newsletters To Follow in 2019“ by Feedspot.com. In Spring 2022, Phillipa published her first book, GOD 'n You: Finding Your Place in Forever. She also completed the licensing and ministerial requirements at the Potter's House School of Ministry in Dallas, Texas.

An advocate for women and children, Phillipa founded and serves as Executive Director of the 501 (c)(3) nonprofit, ilooklikeLOVE, Inc.. ilooklikeLOVE works to eradicate early childhood poverty through diaper assistance and capacity building for new mothers.

 

She is the proud parent on one adult son, Kenneth.

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