He makes me lie down


The Lord is my shepherd, I shall not be in want. ²He makes me lie down in green pastures, he leads me beside quiet waters, ³he restores my soul. ~Psalm 23:1-3

The Lord doesn’t want his people to be in want. But, when we look to Kings, Queens and Presidents for our needs then we are no longer looking to our good, great, and chief Shepherd but to others to fill us. We are no longer aligning to the promises of God if we associate ourselves with the world. We no longer stand for righteousness if we need to be securing at the expense of our integrity.

Taste and see that the Lord is good; blessed is the man who takes refuge in him. Fear the Lord, you his saints, for those who fear him lack nothing. (Psalm 34:8, 9) We can do everything through him who gives us strength. (Phili. 4:13) Our God is a jealous God and no good thing will come when we turn our back on Jesus Christ to fill our need elsewhere.

He makes me lie down in green pastures. We in ourselves cannot lie down in the things of God. The Lord causes us, commands, compels us to do what is right. We in and of ourselves there is not one good¹ but with Jesus Christ living inside of us we have this power that surpasses anything on this earth. (1Peter 1:5) We who are saved by Christ through faith we are shielded by God’s power. Our faith is in Christ and not in the Kings, Queens, and Presidents of this world. We seek God’s favor and we look to him for answers on who we vote for first and foremost because we are not our own we have been bought with a price. (1Corinthians 6:20) We do not seek shelter in our leaders and comrades but in God alone.

The King Asa of Israel inquired of King Ben-hadad who is not an Israelite or a God fearing man for advice. (2Chronicles 15) King Asa made a covenant with God that they would seek God with all their heart. Jesus said “be strong and do not give up, for your work will be rewarded”. (2Chronicles 15:7)  But, King Asa broke his promise and sought the counsel of a foreign, ungodly King. King Asa had peace for many, many years before he sinned before his God. We don’t consciously give up but slowly we let the world in, because we love stuff/things. The Lord says in his word “but seek first his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well.  (Matthew 6:33) Jesus Christ makes King Asa lie down in green pastures because on our own we consult with our enemy on things that matter most to us. King Asa’s did not repent but his punishment was mercy from God; he was afflicted with a disease. (2Chronicles 16:12)

When we learn to lie down in green pastures then we can be lead beside quiet waters, he restores our soul. Why would King Asa exchange peace for disobedience?

It is our sinful nature and the hidden desires that awaken our flesh to want more. (Romans 7:14-17)

In the last several months my eating regime has change because I no longer eat dairy and wheat; wheat is in everything. I suffer from migraines and God show me what was causing it and Praise God! We experience learning curves: gluten free doesn’t mean wheat free. But, lately I found myself in sin. Living in a small town has its disadvantages like variety of organic or prices for wheat free and dairy free are outrages. So, lately when I enter the grocery store I have come unglued and screaming in my head “I hate coming here; Lord there is nothing I can eat here… I hate this feeling inside me… I hate it…everything is so expensive…ehhhhh!!!” We have two restaurants that serve Mexican which has corn tortillas which is on my lists. But, also I become selfish to my needs before others in my renew group and church family. Just because I have new needs doesn’t give me the right to push it on my fellow believers. I realized I was ungrateful with God for not totally healing me. Jesus Christ was making me lie down into this new life he has given me and I was fighting with him. Repenting of my sin towards him he was able to lead me along the quiet waters and restore my soul. This journey has become a new adventure with Jesus Christ which is pain free. Glorify the Lord with me; let us exalt his name together. (Psalm 34:3)

Are you fighting with God for making you lie down in green pastures? Do not be like King Asa’s and fight with God and then not repent. He who trusts in himself is a fool, but he who walks in wisdom is kept safe. (Proverbs 28:26)

My son, do not forget my teaching, but keep my commands in your heart, ²for they will prolong your life for many years and bring you prosperity. ³Let love and faithfulness never leave you: bind them around your neck, write them on the tablet of your heart. ⁴Then you will win favor and a good name in the sight of God and man.Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways acknowledge him, and he will make your paths straight.⁷Do not be wise in your own eyes; fear the Lord and shun evil. ⁸This will bring health to your body and nourishment to your bones. (Proverbs 3:1-8)

O Lord we thank you that you surrendered yourself so we could live and live for your cause. Thank you that you make us to lie down in green pastures and lead us beside the still waters and you restore our souls.

Father, I pray that “If my people, who are called by my name, will humble themselves and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, then will I hear from heaven and will forgive their sin and will heal their land.” (1Chronicles 7:14) In Jesus Christ name, I pray. Amen.

How to find Happiness – Learning How to Forgive Yourself

Key #3 to Happiness – Forgive Yourself!

“If you have made mistakes, even serious ones, there is always another chance for you. You may have a fresh start any moment you choose. For this thing we call “failure” is not the falling down, but the staying down.”

 –Mary Pickford, Canadian actress

As Christians, we are taught at an early age to forgive others.  We even recite in the Lord’s Prayer, “… we forgive those who trespass against us.”  And I am sure that must of us can recall the line from a poem written by English writer Alexander Pope, “To err is human, to forgive is divine.”

We learn that we must also ask God for His forgiveness when we sin or otherwise go against God’s word.  1 John 1:9 (NIV) admonishes us, “If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness.” But how do we learn to forgive ourselves?

If you are anything like me, you may be your own worst critic. You may spend countless hours beating yourself up tor making a few mistakes in your life.  You may obsess over such things as “Why did I make that stupid comment in the business meeting this morning?” or “Why did I take the expressway this morning instead of the local streets? Now I am stuck in all this traffic!”  Or you may be agonizing over a misdirected life decision, “Why did i major in Computer Science in college instead of English? I always did enjoy writing. Why didn’t I follow my passion?” Or you may be struggling with other issues like a car accident that turned out to be your fault or a failed marriage that ended in divorce. Looking back on these incidents now, they may seem  so trivial, but at the time, the thoughts or decisions may have seemed like the most important issues in the world!

Just remember that God has a plan for your life. Jeremiah 29:11 tells us, “For I know the plans I have for you, declares the LORD, plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.”  Whatever road your life takes or whatever decisions that you are making, it will all work out for the good in the long run.  Romans 8:28, “And we know that all things work together for good to those who love God, who have been called according to his purpose.” As long as you continue to trust God and put him first in your life you will succeed. Romans 8:37, “No, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him who loved us.” Proverbs 3:5-6, “Trust in the LORD with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways acknowledge him, and he will will direct your paths.”

Don’t forget to continue thanking God for all that He has done for you.  Ha is still working through you, even in the most difficult of times. And yes, even when God seems silent, He is still there with you!

So if you are currently working toward a specific goal on life’s journey and what you thought was going to work out several months ago is no longer working out for you, don’t give up! Take some time to regroup. Revise your plans, reshape your goals, and get back in there!

“… a lot of times the world doesn’t put rocks in our way. Instead we put them there ourselves.  When we hold on to our mistakes, we’re throwing rocks in our own path…  when we detach ourselves from worry and let go of our mistakes, the road always opens up.  That’s why if you want to make a commitment to never quitting,  one of the first steps is to simply get out of your own way.”

 — Russell Simmons, hip hop mogul (with Chris Morrow), in his book, Do You! 12 Laws to Access the Power in You to Achieve Happiness and Success

Don’t waste any more time continuing to be angry with yourself and by all means, forgive yourself for not getting it right this time.  Whatever the issue was.  Move forward with your life, starting with right now!

What is Self-Forgiveness?

To forgive oneself is not to make excuses for oneself. To forgive ourselves is:

–to pledge to learn from our mistakes;

–to gain a degree of self-control and not repeat them;

–to grow in our capacity for love and peace.

 This article may be a helpful resource for you as well, How To Forgive Yourself & Stop Feeling Guilty

The next time you start beating yourself up for doing something wrong, ask yourself the following questions:   from personal success coach Lisa Phillips: visit her website here

1. At the time of the event, was it realistic for you to expect yourself to do something different / behave in a different way?

2. Did you have the right people around you at the time that could have helped you?

3. At the time of the event, did you have the information or knowledge you needed to make a better choice?

Forgiving yourself for your limitations is a crucial first step in healing your life.  In an unprecedented time of turmoil and stress, most human beings are doing the best they can with the resources, wisdom, and knowledge they have available to them. Yes, it’s important to learn from your mistakes, but eventually you need to get the lesson and move on.

Learn From Your Mistakes

Trying to learn from your mistakes is a very healthy way of dealing with them. A reflection of what you have learned from your mistakes would be a perceptible change in your behavior. Remember that committing a mistake is not a crime, but repeating it, surely is! We learn from our mistakes, as we have to pay a price for them. To err is human and to learn how to avoid the same mistake in the future is also within human capacity.

Encourage Yourself To Move On

Realize that your life is not going to end or stagnate just because of a mistake of yours. Probably, the biggest lesson life teaches us is to move on. Forgive yourself completely and look forward to the future, which is always brighter and full of hope. Languishing in past will not give you an opportunity to time-travel to the bygone times and change things. Disembark yourself from past mistakes and march ahead!

Share your mistakes

Holding things to yourself will make it increasingly difficult to forgive yourself and stop feeling guilty. You can’t afford to keep wallowing in guilt over your wrongdoings. Remember that your mistakes always add to your experience, as life is a continuous learning process. You can always share your mistakes with others and warn them of the consequence that you suffered from. You will also get a chance to vent out your frustration in a more constructive way.

Unburden Your Heart

If you believe that your mistake is too big to be forgiven and keeping it to yourself is killing you, speak up and lift that burden off your heart. Confess your mistake in front of a close friend, whose guidance you trust and value. A guilt-free existence is only possible when your mistakes are not perpetually weighing on your conscience. Pardon yourself by pouring your heart out before someone you know will make you feel better.


Don’t Judge Yourself

The worst people can do is to judge themselves by their mistakes. Being judgmental equals to being disapproving, rather dismissive of the subject of our judgment. And, it gets worse when we are disapproving of your own self. Always remember that you are not a reflection of your mistakes, which are generic, but a manifestation of the good things that you do in life. If at all you want to grade yourself, do that in a balanced way, not being overwhelmed by your errors.


Rituals for Forgiveness
Throughout history, there have been rituals that assisted in the process of forgiveness.   Rabbi Irwin Kula shares some of those time-honored rituals:

This is your first choice in the healing process. You cannot change the past, but you can own the present moment.
Use a Mantra: This exercise will help you change your thought patterns.  Every day, say to yourself, “I forgive myself.”  This is going to feel awkward at first, but keep doing it. This exercise is about changing your thought patterns.

Journaling: Recording your thoughts in a journal is a valuable way of releasing your feelings.  Each time you feel guilt during the day, write it down in your journal. You will be able to track when you feel this, and why, which will help you begin to understand your guilt. The same goes for the good feelings you experience. Write down the moments when you feel joy and richness in your life, and you will begin to recognize the things that release that joy.

Atonement: Learn how to consciously make a sacrifice in light of your desire for forgiveness. You can create your own sacrifice by asking yourself, “What will be my offering?” It could be philanthropy, political activism — something that requires a sacrifice of your time, money or effort. The key is to consciously make that sacrifice in light of your desire for forgiveness.

Success And Failure – Keys to happiness exercise:

  • Ask God for help (ask Jesus into your life if you have not done so already)
  • Read “God’s love for us” and “God’s Mercy” every day this week.
  • Ask others to pray for you
  • Feel free to e-mail us with questions
  • Sign up for our e-mail reminder as soon as a new key to happiness is published

For related articles – Check out:

Check out these Five Steps to Forgiving Yourself with Dr. Phil McGraw

Here is an insightful article from Prevention Magazine, Can You Ever Forgive Yourself? By Ellen Michaud , a former award-winning Prevention editor-at-large.

How to find Happiness – 15 Lesson Series – Overview

How to find Happiness – Introduction

How to find Happiness – Key #1 – A relationship with God

How to find Happiness – Key #2 – Being Thankful

How to find Happiness – Key #3 – Learning How to forgive yourself

How to find Happiness – Key #4 – Learning How to forgive others

How to find Happiness – Key #5 – Living in the present

Answers for Living

May you find true happiness, forgive yourself and may God answer your prayers – Amen!

Faith in the Midst of Failure

“If you have made mistakes, there is always another chance for you. You may have a fresh start any moment you choose, for this thing we call ‘failure’ is not the falling down, but the staying down.”              — Mary Pickford, Canadian actress

If you have a strong, unwavering faith in the Lord, He will guide you, even in the least productive times in your life.  You are still God’s child, in times of success as well as in times of failure.  He continues to love you (and me) even through our difficult phases.  God does not hold your transgressions against you, as the world does.

Romans 8;1-3 NIV Therefore, there is now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus, because through Christ Jesus the law of the Spirit of life set me free from the law of sin and death. For what the law was powerless to do in that it was weakened by the sinful nature, God did by sending his own Son in the likeness of sinful man to be a sin offering. And so he condemned sin in sinful man.

He promises to give you new life, even when you have failed in your endeavors.

Isaiah 43:18-19 NIV Forget the former things; do not dwell on the past. See, I am doing a new thing! Now it springs up; do you not perceive it? I am making a way in the desert and streams in the wasteland.

But what must you do? You must trust God with this promise. You may not know what the future holds for you, but this is where your faith must kick into gear.

Proverbs 3:5-6 NIV Trust in the LORD with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways acknowledge him, and he will direct your paths.
According to Dennis Bratcher, in his commentary, Abraham’s Faith Journey, “… the future that God calls us to is not dependent on our efforts to make it happen. It’s dependent upon our willingness to have faith in God to make happen what we can’t make happen on our own. And it also tells us that God is faithful to those whom he has called in spite of their failure and laughter.”
So what about you? Is it time to trust God even though it seems at times that nothing is going right in your life? Have you given up, feeling like it’s too late to be a productive person of purpose because you have failed so often? Don’t allow your failures to derail you. ***

Having faith in God will keep you on the right path even in the midst of failure.

“There is no failure except in no longer trying. There is no defeat except from within, no really insurmountable barrier save our own inherent weakness of purpose.”          — Elbert Hubbard, American writer

*** Questions listed were taken from A Faithful Failure by John Stanks.