Penny Haynes Life Patterns Ministry

Helping hurting and lonely Christian women
heal painful memories,
build joyful relationships, and
increase their faith and peace.

This month has been rough for me. Granted, there are so many other people struggling with many worse things. However, this has basically sidelined me. For over a month, I've had what started out as a combination of sinusitis and bronchitis that has evolved into the addition of acid reflux and a lump in my esophagus that hinders my speech and makes swallowing very hard. Sleep has eluded me, no medicine is helping, I couldn't afford a trip to the ER, so I've had to wait for an ENT appointment to open up. Thank God, I finally have one this Friday.

But what has bothered me most of all has been my lack of desire to spend time with God. I'm being very transparent here. I have found the time and the energy to push myself to do work for my employer; I have done the administrative work for the ministries. But I just haven't been able to push myself into prayer, the Word, and most importantly, quiet time in His presence.

I finally asked myself why I was avoiding Him, but I couldn't quite tell why. I only know I didn't want to be alone with Him. Maybe it was the knowledge that I had gained weight over the holidays while all I could do is lay in bed with my laptop. I know that triggered something heart-wrenching and disappointing inside of me. Maybe I felt that He was disappointed in me as well. Oh how deep some of our hurts and fears go - just when you think you have gotten healed of them, they crop up again.

But God doesn't use these times to chide us or make us feel worse about ourselves. He wants to show us what is inside of us, and how far we have wandered from Him in our attempts to achieve recognition from someone else or to distract ourselves from things that make us dissatisfied. His purpose is to draw us back to Him so we can awaken from our world-induced slumber to climb back up in His lap and let Him love on us. Why do we keep forgetting that loving us is the one thing He longs for?

So I want to remind all of us that God is for us, not against us. He is rooting for us to win, not waiting for us to lose. He longs to empower us to do all that He asks of us, not trip us up so we will fall on our faces.

There is no reason that we cannot turn from wherever we are right now and reach up to Him, asking Him to pick us up and hold us in His arms as we lay our head on His chest, trusting Him to take care of us solely because we are His child. His mercies are new every moment, not just every morning, so return to Him now in quiet and rest and He will meet your needs. That's what I am going to do.

Why You Do (And Don't Do) What You Do (And Don't Do)

Why You Do (And Don't Do) What You Do (And Don't Do)
New Years is coming, and that means resolutions. For our church, it means a 3 week fast in January which, for some of us, ends up extending beyond that. It is a time when we tell ourselves we are going to get life RIGHT this time. As I look at the weight I've gained over the past year, I really …

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Penny Haynes, Licensed Pastoral Counselor, provides counseling ANYONE can afford through courses, teleconferences, forums, groups, ebooks
and personal sessions.

Counseling starts at $11.55 per week.
Courses Only access is only $4.61 per week.
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