Hello. I’m Excited. This is one of my stops for the Virtual Book Tour That Was Then, This Is Now, This Broken Vessel Restored. This virtual book tour is organized by Write Now Literary Book Tours. This tour runs September 28, 2017. Follow the tour here. Book your own tour here WNL
Genre: Christian Non Fiction
Kindle ASIN: B073VCY1L5
About the Author
In addition to being an award winning author of Completely Whole and Secret Places Revealed, Paulette is an inspirational speaker, as well as a writing workshop instructor.
Her literary works have been spotlighted in a growing number of publications, including CBN, Real Life Real Faith Magazine, The Sacramento Observer and Black Pearls Magazine.
She has also appeared on numerous local and online radio shows.
Paulette is also the owner of Write Now Literary Book Tours. She resides in Northern California.
About The Book
HOW COULD GOD HAVE A PURPOSE FOR ME AMIDST THIS MESS?
WHY DO SUCH BAD THINGS HAPPEN TO GOOD PEOPLE?
If you’ve recently asked yourself these questions, Paulette Harper’s That Was Then, This is Now has the answers. Struggling to recover from a broken marriage and disappointed dreams, Paulette Harper gropes for meaning and understanding. And through her searching, God reveals Himself to her in ways she never before imagined possible. By sharing her struggles with transparency, she illustrates how a heart attitude of surrender allows God to use a broken vessel for His ultimate plans of glory.
That Was Then, This is Now, minsters to hurting hearts in every season in life, reminding them that God restores shattered lives, intent on using them for His sovereign purposes.
Don’t Get Bitter, Get Better
Our enemy often tries to use the disappointments and setbacks in life to cause us to become bitter with God and with those that hurt us. From my own experience, I persuade you to use what has happened in your life as a stepping stone to propel you to a new level in growth and to a place of faith and determination in God. Remember, setbacks in life are opportunities that God will use to show you how faithful He is. “Let all bitterness, wrath, and anger, and clamor, and evil speaking, be put away from you with malice” (Ephesians 4:31, NKJV). “Looking diligently lest any man fail of the grace of God; lest any root of bitterness springing up troubles you; and thereby many are defiled” (Hebrews 12:15, KJV).
The Hebrew word for bitterness is pikria, which is translated as extreme wickedness, a bitter root and so producing a bitter fruit, hatred. Malice, in the dictionary, is a desire to harm others; to see others suffer, spite. Defiled means to make filthy or dirty; to profane; corrupt.
In the book of Ephesians, chapter 4, the Apostle Paul is warning believers not to revert to the “old man” when faced with testing, trials, and tribulations. The amplified version of the scripture tells us to “strip away” the old, unregenerate man. Your “old man” is deceitful and corrupt and walks under the sway of the enemy.
Some of the characteristics of the old man are anger, lying, indignation, fury, polluting language, rage, and resentment. When you are facing the difficulties of life, don’t allow the circumstances to control how you are going to act or respond, especially when you have been hurt. We feel that we have the right to retaliate against those that hurt us, but the Apostle Paul says:
Repay no one evil for evil. Have regard for good things in the sight of all men. If it is possible as much as depends on you, live peaceably with all men. Beloved, do not avenge yourselves, but rather give place to wrath; for it is written, vengeance is Mine, I will repay, say the Lord. Romans 12:17–19 (NKJV)
When you take it upon yourself to inflect hurt onto others because they hurt you, you are standing in the position as a god. God does not need our help in dealing with people that have hurt us. Retaliation comes from a wounded spirit, and a wounded spirit is liable to do anything and say anything. When you respond out of a wounded spirit, there are consequences to your behavior. You cannot justify yourself, nor can you escape the correction God will bring to you. The Bible gives us the answer on how Christ deals with a wounded spirit, “But He was wounded for our transgressions, He was bruised for our iniquities; the chastisement of our peace was upon Him; and with His stripes we are healed” (Isaiah 53:5, KJV).
Paul is addressing Christians, born again believers, the people of God, because he is aware of the struggles we face with the flesh and how we deal with those that have hurt us. Since you are a child of God, your behavior should reflect the nature and lifestyle of God.
Did Christ retaliate against His enemies? No, He did not—He died for them; He blessed them; He prayed for and loved them. Scripture records that Christ opened not His mouth (Isaiah 53:7). Although Christ was innocent of the charges against Him, He refused to yield to the will of His enemies.
When we allow bitterness into our hearts, the scripture says that we are defiling our temples, and God will not dwell in a dirty temple. God is taking account of how we treat our brothers and sisters in Christ, and He will deal with us accordingly.
The truth of the matter is everybody is not pulling for you. Some people want you to fail. They will not celebrate your victories with you; they want you to suffer because of something you did to them. They are praying that God does not bless you; they want to see God punish you, and they want you to stay in bondage. However, regardless of the actions of others, you are to maintain your Christ like disposition. Devastations, hard times, troubles, and disappointments will come and people will hurt you, but whatever life brings you, don’t allow it to cause bitterness to spring up in your heart.
If the test you’re facing is one of the hardest and you’re still standing, rejoice and again, I say rejoice. The next test you’ll face will cause you to stand even stronger, and it will not move you out of the position you are in right now. Through it all, allow the tests,