Category Archives: Restoration

Living a Restored Life in God’s Transforming Love

Among my mother’s keepsakes, I came upon a yellowed and torn article that blessed me abundantly. (author unknown)

broken vessels My daughter’s life reminds me of a beautiful vase that has been dropped and broken. When a broken vase is put back together properly, the cracks still show – like the scars in her life.

 At first, a fractured vase must be handled carefully until it has mended properly. After it has mended, the cracks of the fracture become less and less visible.  With the aging of the vase, new lines appear, and the fracture lines blend with the new lines – enhancing its beauty.

 To new people our daughter meets, the fractures in her life are not seen. They can’t believe they were ever there. To the prayer partners, the lines of God’s grace and love in her life have created new lines that have built faith and hope in their lives.

Do you fear you will never be able to let go of the brokenness in your life? Do you carry the burdens of hopelessness, pain, and sorrow?  Does shame and condemnation from your past hold you captive? You are not alone – God will meet you in your broken places.

The Lord is near to those who have a broken heart, and He saves those who have a contrite spirit. (Psalm 34:18)

The best way to heal a broken heart is to give God all the pieces. A contrite heart is one that is not led by self-will, but one that is obedient to the conviction of God’s word and is led by the Spirit of God. The Lord wants you to trust Him and develop a dependent spirit on Him. You will find rest and freedom in yielding a broken, contrite heart to be molded by the hand of God.

I was once devasted by the physical, mental and spiritual trauma in my life. Gently, the Lord opened my heart to the truth of His love, compassion, and grace. His transforming love overwhelmed my brokenness. Friend, you are not too broken, your past does not define you and you can be whole again.

But he said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ’s power may rest on me. 2 Corinthians 12:9

 

Pray Easy

Thank You, Lord, for your transforming love that heals my brokenness and restores my life with love, hope, and joy in your salvation.

Join the conversation – If you enjoyed this post, why not subscribe and recommend my site to other broken people. I appreciate your comments – Has His transforming love overwhelmed your brokenness?

Thanks for Sharing!

Follow me on Twitter: @Maureen_Hager

Like my Facebook Page: Maureen Hager – Out of the Brokenness

View my Pinterest Boards: Maureen Hager

Love and Blessings,
Maureen

Once You Choose Hope Anything is Possible

October is National Breast Cancer Awareness Month

Looking at the statistics above, it seems likely that we all know someone (if not yourself) that has been diagnosed with breast cancer.  Myself, I can testify to the difficult year I fought breast cancer. The endless tests, surgeries, and depleted energy were all a part of my journey of restoration. Today I can declare I am a survivor!

breast-cancer

Here are some attributes that you will want to hold close to your heart while you are going through your healing.

Love – Choose love over fear.  Love never fails. 1 John 4:16; We have come to know and have believed the love which God has for us. God is love, and the one who abides in love abides in God, and God abides in him.

Faith – Let your faith be bigger than your circumstances. Have faith in the goodness of God to provide hope for the future. Hebrews 12:2; Let us fix our eyes on Jesus, the author, and perfecter of our faith, who for the joy set before him endured the cross, scorning its shame and sat down at the right hand of the throne of God.

Strength – While you are healing from the physical scars or the emotional scars that breast cancer brings, meditate on His promises. He is faithful. Isaiah 40:29;  “He gives power to the weak, And to those who have no might He increases strength”

Hope – Hope looks forward. You will be able to break free from any fear and despair and receive healing and restoration. Psalm 39:7; “But now Lord, what do I look for? My hope is in you.”

Pink Hope

Hold On Pain Ends – Whatever you are struggling with today, I encourage you to open your heart to the one who is our hope. The Lord is with you  –  be dependent on Him today. Rest in Him and His promise of eternal life. Nothing can separate you from His love for you. Once You Choose Hope Anything is Possible!

breast-buttefly

Cultivate Compassion – God has great compassion towards you. Now put your compassion into action. There are many practical ways to help a woman that is suffering. You can lighten her load by preparing a meal, helping with the kids, running errands, and completing household chores. Your encouraging words and prayers will bring hope to the hurting.

Pray-ButtonThank you, Lord, for your love and compassion towards me. Show me those who need my help and compassion.

Join the conversation – If you enjoyed this post, why not subscribe and recommend my site to other broken people! I appreciate your comments – Which moments are you most appreciative of for the help you received?

Thanks for Sharing!  Follow me on Twitter: @Maureen_Hager

Like my Facebook Page: Maureen Hager – Out of the Brokenness

View my Pinterest Boards: Maureen Hager

Love and Blessings,
Maureen

 

 

 

Does Time Heal All Wounds?

time-heals-all-wounds-1087107_640Time is a great healer…so we are told. If we experience a broken heart, let more time pass by and the pain will begin to subside…so we are told. Passing time can bury our hurt, our emotional pain can soften and the effects of physical pain can begin to dissipate over time. It is what we do during the timeframe that affects the quality of our lives.

Time alone can not simply heal anything. The following quote by Rose Fitzgerald Kennedy makes a lot of sense to me:

“It has been said, ‘time heals all wounds.’ I do not agree. The wounds remain. In time, the mind, protecting its sanity, covers them with scar tissue and the pain lessens. But it is never gone.”

Does-the-Bible-Say-Time-Heals-All-Wounds_

If all we needed is more time to be healed, we probably would suffer from hope deferred and a heart that becomes sick. (Proverbs 13:12)

But there is hope because Jesus is the great healer. He may ask you to participate in your healing. Do you need to forgive someone? He may require further understanding of a situation where your heart was wounded. Whatever He is calling you to do, spend prayerful time in His healing presence. I’ve discovered the best way to heal a broken heart is to give God all the pieces.

Stand on these healing promises from the Lord:

OUT_OFTHE_BROKENNES_LOGO_400JPG

He heals the brokenhearted And binds up their wounds. Ps 147:3

 

 

Time for Hope1

“And now, Lord, what do I wait for? My hope is in You. Ps 39:7

 

Pray-ButtonThank you, Lord, for being such a complete healer. If we suffer from physical infirmities, you will give sufficient grace to the weak.

Join the conversation – If you enjoyed this post, why not subscribe and recommend my site to other broken people! I appreciate your comments – What are your thoughts about “Time Healing All Wounds?”

Thanks for Sharing!  Follow me on Twitter: @Maureen_Hager

Like my Facebook Page: Maureen Hager – Out of the Brokenness

View my Pinterest Boards: Maureen Hager

Love and Blessings,
Maureen

 

When God When?

Have you ever cried out in frustration to God, “When God, when?” There are times when our prayers can appear to go unanswered. We question if God even hears our pleas. But be assured, He is working on our behalf.

Jeremiah 29:11 gives us hope for the future; “For I know the thoughts that I think toward you, says the Lord, thoughts of peace and not of evil, to give you a future and a hope.”      woman waiting

We can wait on God passively or expectantly. The passive person will eventually give up, believing they have waited long enough and nothing will change. They decide to learn to live with the situation. The expectant person continues to hope and expects the answer is coming at any moment, even though the waiting continues.

Do you believe that God will never fail you? Can you accept God’s timing and resist the temptation to reason it all out on your own? “A man’s heart plans his way, But the Lord directs his steps.” (Proverbs 16:9) Can you live in hope and trust God who causes all things to happen at exactly the right time?

In the book of Genesis, we read about the story of Joseph. He waited many years for the fulfillment of the dream God gave to him. Joseph went through many difficult situations and remained in prison before the time came for God’s purpose to manifest itself. (Genesis 39:41)

I must confess that I had a passive heart regarding a health issue. In 1977, I became a victim of a violent biker gang war and suffered two gunshot wounds from an M16 rifle. While recovering in the hospital, I contracted Hepatitis C through one of many blood transfusions. It wasn’t until a few years later that I learned I was infected with the chronic Hepatitis C virus. This contagious liver disease will not simply go away.

For the past 39 years, I had numerous blood tests, liver biopsies, and doctor visits to monitor my liver. The only treatments available were difficult to endure, and the success rate for a cure was below average. I resolved to accept and adapt to living with Hepatitis C. I simply grew tired of waiting.

Suddenly a new drug came on the market, and I was an excellent match for treatment. More tests, frequent doctor’s visits, and endless paperwork followed, but this time, I waited expectantly. And then one day, a box arrived on my doorstep containing my first bottle of medication. I prayed with thankfulness for the healing that would soon come.

Miracles

My latest test results revealed the virus was no longer detected in my blood. My breakthrough had come. Now I am focusing on other prayer requests that have seemed to go unanswered. My faith has swelled with hope, for God is faithful!

Pray-ButtonThank you, Lord, for your limitless power. Help us to wait patiently and expectantly to receive our breakthrough.

Join the conversation – If you enjoyed this post, why not subscribe and recommend my site to other broken people! I appreciate your comments – Will you hope in God’s promises? How will you wait?

Thanks for Sharing!  Follow me on Twitter: @Maureen_Hager

Like my Facebook Page: Maureen Hager – Out of the Brokenness

View my Pinterest Boards: Maureen Hager

Love and Blessings,
Maureen

 

The Keys to Forgiving Yourself

Are you still carrying the burden of shame, guilt, and condemnation from your past? In your mind are you replaying the foolishness of your prior decisions?       If this is you, then it is afd3e179afa73a6b279129f4fe046f4ftime to surrender and move towards forgiveness.

If you don’t learn how to forget former sins, you will always live in the past. Bitterness and guilt will continue to grow within you.

When you look in the mirror, do you love and accept the person that Christ made you to be, or do you see a broken person in need of forgiveness?

But if we walk in the light as He is in the light, we have fellowship with one another, and the blood of Jesus Christ His Son cleanses us from all sin. 1 John 1:7

If you have repented of your sins, then you are forgiven. Take a minute and let that sink in. Realize the power of the work of the cross and the shed blood of Jesus. Your debt has been paid. God is able to forgive you, even when you can’t forgive yourself.

Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; old things have passed away; behold, all things have become new.                         2 Corinthians 5:17

Don’t associate your failures with the new creation you have become. Your past does not define you, but it contributes to who you are today. Forgiveness is giving up the hope that the past could have been any different. Realize you did the best you could at the time considering the circumstances.

God knows your name, and He calls you His own. Here are just a few of the names He has given you:

  • Chosen (Colossians 3:12) cdf08e10c8ec744a88a0eb9d508d5436
  • Child (1 John 3:1)
  • Beloved (Deuteronomy 33:12)
  • Holy & Blameless          (Ephesians 1:4)
  • Friend ( John 15:15)
  • Daughter (2 Corinthians 6:18)
  • Heir (Romans 8:17)
  • Blessed (Psalm 65:4)
  • Redeemed (Ephesians 1:7)
  • Treasured Possession   (Deuteronomy 7:6)

Give yourself grace and move towards loving yourself. Begin to see how your Lord and Savior sees you!
Pray-Button

Thank you, Lord, for your precious shed blood that has paid for my sins. I am so grateful for your forgiveness and love towards me.

 

Join the conversation – If you enjoyed this post, why not subscribe and recommend my site to other broken people!

I appreciate your comments – Have you noticed how you can hold onto past mistakes and regrets long after they occurred? Can you let your past make you better – not bitter? The Lord is willing to guide and direct you to embracing the new creation you have become!

Thanks for Sharing!  Follow me on Twitter: @Maureen_Hager

Like my Facebook Page: Maureen Hager – Out of the Brokenness

View my Pinterest Boards: Maureen Hager

Love and Blessings,

Maureen

 

The Key to Living Free

b6bfefc186143ae8eaeb1d499136a691

The key to living free is to forgive those who trespass against you. God commands us to forgive, but it requires a conscious choice to do so. It is not a feeling, but an action. Are you willing to surrender embedded memories of shame, pain, and suffering to God?

You do not have to live in the past with a heart full of bitterness and guilt. The longer you carry resentment, the heavier it becomes. Isn’t it time to accept reality and move forward? Are you willing to open old wounds and let God show you the offending person as He sees them? Through His eyes of compassion and grace, you may just get a better understanding of why an individual acts the way they do.

Forgiveness is a prominent theme throughout the Bible. Unforgiveness and self-righteousness will block restoration. The Bible has over 101 verses referencing the action forgive.

For if you forgive men their trespasses, your heavenly Father will also forgive you. But if you do not forgive men their trespasses, neither will your Father forgive your trespasses. Matthew 6:14-15

0e1273bff3ccc2a036ced1eee90e61a0Forgiving someone does not mean that what they did was ok. Instead, it is about setting your heart free from the chains of unforgiveness. Forgive them even if they are not sorry. Forgive as the Lord forgave you.

Most times, forgiveness is a slow process. We see this in The Parable of the Unforgiving Servant: Matthew 18:21-22

Then Peter came to Him and said, “Lord, how often shall my brother sin against me, and I forgive him? Up to seven times?” Jesus said to him, “I do not say to you, up to seven times, but up to seventy times seven.” 

Jesus knows that forgiveness is not easy. It is not a one-time choice to be made and then we automatically live in a state of forgiveness. While that may sound great, forgiveness may require a lifetime of continuous forgiving.

We forgive out of obedience to the Lord. Our reward is called freedom.

And whenever you stand praying, if you have anything against anyone, forgive him, that your Father in heaven may also forgive you your trespasses. Mark 11:25

Pray-Button Thank you, Lord, for forgiving me for any resentment and bitterness I hold against another. Where there has been an injustice, I choose to let you be Judge. I put my trust in you. Your power and grace are at work in me.

Are you holding unforgiveness in your heart? Are you willing to lay down your unforgiveness to receive freedom?

Join the conversation – If you enjoyed this post, why not subscribe to my blog, Out of the Brokenness, and recommend my site to other broken people! I appreciate your comments.

Thanks for Sharing!  Follow me on Twitter: @Maureen_Hager

Like my Facebook Page: Maureen Hager – Out of the Brokenness

View my Pinterest Boards: Maureen Hager

Love and Blessings,
Maureen

 

 

 

What’s in Your Hope Chest?

@Maureen_Hager 

Do you have a hopeful expectancy about your future or do you fear the unknown? Scripture points us to the hope we have in God’s plan for our lives.  For I know the thoughts that I think toward you, says the Lord, thoughts of peace and not of evil, to give you a future and a hope. (Jeremiah 29:11 NKJV)

Be Strong, Take Heart, All Who Hope in the Lord Psalm 31:24

Be Strong, Take Heart, All Who Hope in the Lord. Psalm 31:24

Traditionally, a Hope Chest is full of items dedicated to the hope of having a future. The chests were used for collecting and storing items for younger women to have when they got married. Typical items included; dishes, silverware, linens, towels, family mementos and a big chest of dreams.

Today, Hope Chests have all but disappeared from modern day family life. While most of us own a chest, more often than not it is used for general storage at the foot of the bed.

From a spiritual perspective, here’s some treasures to have and to hold in your own Hope Chest:

BIBLE – All Scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, and for instruction in righteousness. 2 Timothy 3:16

JOY & PEACE – Now may the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace in believing, that you may abound in hope by the power of the Holy Spirit. Romans 15:13

LOVE – And we have known and believed the love that God has for us. God is love, and he who abides in love abides in God, and God in him. 1 John 4:16

FORGIVENESS – For if you forgive men their trespasses, your heavenly Father will also forgive you. Matthew 6:14

PRAYER – Then you will call upon Me and go and pray to Me, and I will listen to you. Jeremiah 29:12

FAITH – Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen. Hebrews 11:1

REDEMPTION – In Him we have redemption through His blood, the forgiveness of sins, according to the riches of His grace. Ephesians 1:7

Pray-ButtonThank you Lord for the hope we have in you!

Join the conversation – If you enjoyed this post, why not subscribe and recommend my site to other broken people!

I appreciate your comments – The NKJV Bible mentions Hope 151 times. What’s in your Hope Chest?

Thanks for Sharing! Follow me on Twitter: @Maureen_Hager
Like my Facebook Page: Maureen Hager – Out of the Brokenness
View my Pinterest Boards: Maureen Hager

Love and Blessings,
Maureen

 

 

Is Your Brokenness Showing?

broken heartHer beautiful smile and warm countenance caused me to stop and offer a holiday blessing. She struggled to maneuver the motorized shopping cart through the aisles of the store. Her brokenness was showing, but her spirit was joyfully whole. In the eyes of God, she accepted her weakness and allowed His strength to manifest in her life.

We live with brokenness and blessings, challenges and victories, sorrow and joy. They are intertwined together. Allow the Lord to remove the strands of brokenness and sorrow from your life and the blessings and joy will remain. The challenge is to give God all your broken pieces to receive the victory. “For the battle is the Lord’s…” 1 Samuel 17:47

Some of us lock our broken heart inside walls of sorrow. We vow we won’t let anyone or anything hurt us again. We develop a hard heart. Our brokenness is hidden. Scripture compares a hardened heart to a rebellious heart. “Today, if you will hear His voice, Do not harden your hearts as in the rebellion.” Hebrews 3:15

Some of us (like myself) show our brokenness to the world. I walk with a limp; I can’t hide it. My cane provides extra stability and I am grateful for the security it brings. “The Lord is my strength and my shield; My heart trusted in Him, and I am helped; Therefore my heart greatly rejoices, And with my song I will praise Him.” Psalm 28:7

Some of us look broken from the weariness of fighting life’s battles. We hang our head in hopelessness. We question the Lord’s love and faithfulness to deliver us from our circumstances. “Be of good courage, And He shall strengthen your heart, All you who hope in the Lord.” Psalm 31:24

Healing is possible. There is rest and freedom in yielding a broken, contrite heart to broken heart - Ps 34-18be molded by the hand of God. The Lord is near to those who have a broken heart, And saves such as have a contrite spirit.” Psalm 34:18

Pray-ButtonThank you Lord that we can trust you with our broken places. You fill our wounded hearts with peace and hope.

Join the conversation – If you enjoyed this post, why not subscribe and recommend my site to other broken people. I appreciate your comments – What broken pieces do you need to give to God?

Thanks for Sharing! Follow me on Twitter: @Maureen_Hager
Like my Facebook Page: Maureen Hager – Out of the Brokenness
View my Pinterest Boards: Maureen Hager

Love and Blessings,
Maureen

Out of Brokenness and Into Wholeness

OUT_OFTHE_BROKENNES_LOGO_400JPG

Brokenness is a reality for all of us. It is natural for us to resist the heartbreak of grief, disappointment, and pain. Even so…the truth of the Gospel of Jesus Christ remains – there is hope and healing in yielding a broken, contrite heart to be molded by the hand of God. Your part is to give God all the pieces and to trust Him with His plan and purpose for your life. God’s part is to bring restoration. (Jeremiah 29:11-14)

I was a young teenager when my parents divorced. My mother left us in search of a better life. Consequently, my father had the task of caring for three children. Physically he was there, but he was absent in heart. Being the oldest child, a lot of household responsibilities were forced upon me.

I carried an overwhelming loneliness and emptiness in my heart. I sought escape from the pain and rejection by numbing myself with drugs.

In my quest to seek and find love and acceptance, I met Viggo, a member of an outlaw motorcycle club. The gang offered me a promise of excitement, drugs and a sense of belonging. I embraced the camaraderie of many new brothers and sisters, and I became Viggo’s property.

I carried an illusion of freedom within this new family. It wasn’t until I witnessed many injustices against others, that I realized I was slipping into a dark world without hope. I had no idea how I would escape the control the gang imposed on my life.

One evening, we quickly and discreetly fled from NYC authorities. With each passing mile, we were closer to entering a volatile gang war in Texas. Six nights later I would become a victim in their war.

In the early morning hours, several members of a rival gang stood outside the house where we were staying and opened fire. I was standing in the doorway facing the front windows when the shooting started.

Silhouetted by the light, they took aim at me and when the first shots rang out, I was hit immediately in my left arm. Fortunately, while I reached for the light switch, my arm crossed over my heart and became a protective shield. The bullet’s impact had thrown me, and before I hit the floor, another bullet lodged in my right thigh.

Hours later, I awoke in the intensive care unit of a nearby hospital. My right leg hung elevated in traction; my left arm was covered in a plaster cast. I was sure God was punishing me. As I lay motionless and silent, it occurred to me that all my searching for love and acceptance had brought me to this place. There was no escape from the pain and suffering or the uncertainty of the future.

For the next six months, I was completely bedridden. In another attempt to fuse my shattered bones, my doctor wrapped me in a body cast of plaster from my chest down to my ankle. It proved to be a futile attempt. Eventually, a surgeon fused the bones in my leg together using a bone fragment from my hip. As a result, my leg is permanently two inches shorter.

Determined to start a new life, I severed all ties with the gang. I was transported back to NJ and started a year of intensive rehabilitation therapy. Today, I have a limited range of motion in my arm and leg. Gradually, I learned to live with my disabilities. In fact, my doctors declared me a miracle!

When a friend invited me to attend a baptismal service at her church, I agreed to go because of the transformation I saw in her. Listening to the testimonies of others, the good news of the gospel filled my heart with hope. That night I asked Jesus to be my Lord and Savior.

In time, the Lord healed the bitterness and anger I held in my heart. Sin had its consequences, but His love has transformed my life. The Lord blessed me with a Godly husband and two precious daughters. I am rejoicing in His provision as He prepares the path before me.

*This post was first published as a guest post on Aug 11, 2015                Testimony Tuesday – hollybarrett.org

Pray-ButtonThank you Lord for the salvation you have provided for us. Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; old things have passed away, all things have become new. (2 Corinthians 5:17)

Join the conversation – If you enjoyed this post, why not subscribe! I appreciate your comments and I hope you will recommend my site to other broken people.

Thanks for Sharing! Follow me on Twitter: @Maureen_Hager
Like my Facebook Page: Maureen Hager – Out of the Brokenness

Love and Blessings,
Maureen

 

 

A Fractured Life Can Be Beautiful Again

broken things2Among my mother’s keepsakes, I found a yellowed and torn article that blessed me abundantly. Unfortunately, although the author is unknown, the message is still powerful.

     My daughter’s life reminds me of a beautiful vase that has been dropped and broken. When a broken vase is put back together properly, the cracks still show – like the scars in her life.

     At first a fractured vase must be handled carefully until it has mended properly. After it has mended, the cracks of the fracture become less and less visible.  With the aging of the vase, new lines appear and the fracture lines blend with the new lines – enhancing its beauty.

     To new people our daughter meets, the fractures in her life are not seen. They can’t believe they were ever there. To the prayer partners the lines of God’s grace and love in her life have created new lines that have built faith and hope in their lives.

Kintsugi is the Japanese art of repairing broken pottery with lacquer dusted or mixed with powdered gold, silver, or platinum. As a philosophy, it treats  breakage and repair as part of the history of an object, rather than something to disguise.

Tea bowl fixed in the Kintsugi method

Tea bowl fixed in the Kintsugi method

I think the Japanese are onto something here! My broken cups and vases are quickly discarded; I see them as no longer perfect.

Do you find yourself striving for perfection? Are you ashamed  to let others see your scars? We all are broken by circumstances in our lives. The Lord knows this and His grace and His love has made a way for us to find perfection in Him.

And He said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for My strength is made perfect in weakness.”    (2 Corinthians 12:9a)

But whoever keeps His word, truly the love of God is perfected in him. By this we know that we are in Him. (1 John 2:5)

Pray-ButtonThank you Lord for bringing restoration to the broken places in my life. You will perfect all that concerns me as I place my trust in you.

Join the conversation – If you enjoyed this post, why not subscribe! I appreciate your comments and I hope you will recommend my site to other broken people.

Thanks for Sharing! Follow me on Twitter: @Maureen_Hager
Like my Facebook Page: Maureen Hager – Out of the Brokenness

Love and Blessings,
Maureen