Peace & Perspective

Living in Peace by having the right perspective. Peace – ˈpēs Noun: Freedom from strife; a state of tranquillity or serenity. Perspective – per·spec·tive – pərˈspektiv – Noun: A particular attitude toward or way of regarding something; a point of view.


Leave a comment

Karma is not for Christians

I always cringe when I see Christians posting on Karma. Karma has nothing to do with God. Karma is a theological concept found in the Buddhist and Hindu religions. That fact alone should make Christians run but why do I see so many Christians wishing “Karma” on others or seeking any form of revenge?

First, as Christians, Karma is the last thing we should want on those who have betrayed or hurt us. Sure, our flesh may want revenge and for them to feel the same pain they caused us, but as Christians, we are to die to our flesh and allow the Holy Spirit to guide us with humility. Once you do that, your flesh takes a back seat and the Holy Spirit takes over and you begin to recognize the root cause of the lost soul who hurt you and how desperately they are in need of healing and prayer.

The Holy Spirit within us prompts our hearts to want the best for others – despite… Despite the pain they’ve caused, despite the betrayal, despite the unfairness. This is a great test to see where our level of spiritual maturity is. Wishing revenge or karma on someone who’s hurt you is a telltale sign of the level of your spiritual maturity.

  • Those with no spiritual maturity will wish karma and seek revenge upon those who have hurt them and will be at peace with that decision.
  • Those who are infants in spiritual maturity will wish karma and revenge on others but will feel that Holy Spirit nudge and know it’s not right to wish revenge on anyone and do their best to withdraw from these feelings.
  • Those who are growing in their spiritual maturity will reluctantly but obediently pray for the best outcome for those who have hurt or betrayed them. It’s difficult for them but they still do it and in doing it, they continue to grow spiritually and God rewards them for their obedience in giving them peace in the matter.
  • And lastly, those who are fully spiritual mature will have an automatic instinct to pray for someone that has wronged them and their heart will hurt for them because they have the discernment to know how badly they are in need of saving and inner healing that can only come from prayer and intercession. There is no wish to do them harm and all they desire is to see them healed and whole again. Because someone who is healed and whole cannot and does not hurt others.

Scripture is very clear that if we are walking the path of righteousness – not our righteousness but His, God will always vindicate us. I find comfort knowing that He knows my heart and my intentions always and I don’t have to explain anything to Him because He already knows and I can rest in that.

Patiently waiting for God to vindicate us means we must trust in His timing and that is very difficult. It means He alone will bring truth to light and expose darkness without any effort from us.

We must remain obedient and silent, not seeking to vindicate ourselves while we wait. We must understand and recognize that through the waiting, He is doing a work in everyone involved, including us and by being obedient, He will vindicate those who are walking in His righteousness and He alone will deal with those who are not. This brings me peace.

Once you have reached this peaceful realization that the bad behavior of others has nothing to do with you (assuming you’ve done some self-reflection and have owned your part of any conflict), give it to God and just wait. Soon peace will come, not by wishing punishment on whoever hurt you, but because you know a greater power is in charge of the situation and you can finally let go of all the exhausting effort in vindicating yourself. By waiting, trusting, and handing it over to God, you’ll not only receive righteous vindication, but it will be the sweetest form of justice you will ever receive without one bit of effort from you.

Take it from me because this is where I am now, receiving Godly favor in all areas of my life. Be sure to recognize what vindication may look like…sometimes it’s not as obvious as you have envisioned it. Vindication may be good health, good fortune, wonderful children, a blessed marriage, peaceful and joyful living, restoration of your reputation, or the emergence of new, Godly friends. Just be sure to recognize the blessings in your life…they are God’s favor for your obedience.

Psalm 17:2
Let my vindication come from you; may your eyes see what is right.

Romans 12:19
Do not take revenge, my dear friends, but leave room for God’s wrath, for it is written: “It is mine to avenge; I will repay,” says the Lord.

I’d love to hear your thoughts! If this blog has helped in any way, please share with others.


Leave a comment

Personality Tests

I’m an INFJ.

Because my mind has been overwhelmingly boggled for the past four years dealing with some of the most insane conflicts I’ve ever been a part of with one individual, notice I said, one individual, I often ask myself, “could it be me?” I have questioned my behavior, my motives, and my intentions over and over again, second guessing who I actually am. I mean, I know who I am, who I’ve always been, what I stand for, and what I don’t like the back of my hand. I’ve been this person for half a century. However, an emotionally and mentally unstable individual has an insidious power to place incredible doubt in the minds of even the most stable people. Unknowingly, I absorbed many of the false accusations and the now crystal clear and evident projections onto myself. I even questioned my own logic which I derive from society’s norm of what a healthy relationship is: common courtesy, mutual respect, accountability, empathy, and basic human kindness.

I started asking myself if I were the things that were so brutally projected onto me. It consumed me. It made me paranoid, especially around others. I became so very quiet and careful to not say the wrong things. If I did say things, I’d over analyze them wondering if I offended anyone. If I thought I had, I’d go out of my way to explain myself. I gave someone who has a history of chaos and turmoil and broken and divided relationships the power to mentally and emotionally wound me to the point where I didn’t even know myself. The lies circled in my head. I became overly sensitive to criticism fearing I was yet again at fault and failing those around me.

There was one (among many) hurtful false accusation that left me wondering who I am.  “Do I over-talk people? Do I interrupt? Do I not listen?” Today, I can confidently and boldly answer, “No, I do not!

I’ve been told by many that I am a great listener and I offer incredible advice. Friends have confided great personal issues with me and sought my advice because they have told me that due to my inspirational nature on how I’ve gracefully and triumphantly handled past trials, they value my opinion. These “friends” are in greater number than just one individual’s warped opinion of me.

I soon came to learn and understand that my “over-talking” my “interrupting,” and my “not listening” translated to, “I don’t want to hear anything from you while I’m in the process of bullying you, verbally abusing you, personally attacking you, and controlling the circular conversation going nowhere. If you shut it down by any dialogue whatsoever by trying to reason with me, disagree with me or attempt to interject any civility then I will lose control. Do you understand that when you speak, it takes away from my time to demean and belittle you and I risk you exposing my nonsense? You must understand that I must be in control and show you how powerful I am and the only way to do this is by being abusive and blaming you for everything so I accuse you of over-talking me and interrupting me so you will be terrified to speak any further and then I once again can have total and complete control over you, the conversation and the situation.”

So, a few days ago, out of curiosity and to dismiss any doubt in my mind as to who I am, I googled “personality tests” and took a few. Each time, my tests results confirmed I was an INFJ. This stands for Introverted, Intuitive, Feeling, and Judging.

I became intrigued with finding out what exactly this means and have read countless articles. To my delight, I found out I am indeed a caring, loving, nurturing person. In fact, the INFJ is known as “The Counselor.”  Some character traits about INFJ’s are:

While our character is complex and we only make up less than 2% of the population, we are strong humanitarians. We are idealists, doers, and dreamers. Our rare combination of vision and practicality often results in us taking on a disproportionate amount of responsibility in various causes to Status which so many of us are drawn into. We are deeply concerned about our relations with individuals as well as the state of humanity at large and are inherent givers. We are generally well-suited to the “inspirational” professions such as teaching (especially in higher education) and religious leadership as well as psychology and counseling. Our strengths are in communication and writing as well as listening. Another article actually described INFJ’s as having a “pleasant conversation style.” We are people who are passionate about helping those in need. We go to great lengths to avoid conflict. We are warm and affirming by nature as well as dedicated, loyal and nurturing. We have a high expectation of ourselves and others and seek long-lasting relationships. (http://www.humanmetrics.com/personality/infj)

(More information on INJF’s here: http://introvertspring.com/the-worlds-rarest-personality-infj-type-decoded/)

It is sad that I actually had to search for who I am as a person on the internet because of the emotional and mental damage someone else did to me due to their own instability. I had to take multiple personality tests just to prove to myself that I am who I say I am and I am a good person and my intentions are good – always. In my research, I’ve learned that it’s those of us who are empaths, seek to avoid conflict, put others first, are flexible and easy going, and attempt to keep the peace at all costs are the ones who typically get taken advantage of the most and narcissistic people are drawn to us because we’re easy to manipulate.

I encourage you to take some of these free personality tests if you have even the slightest feeling of guilt or are questioning who you are because of what someone has done or said to you. (Some links are below.)

For those of us who do have good intentions and mean no harm in our relationships, we should always still practice self-reflection. While we are caring, loving, and well-intended people, we are not perfect. If you are convicted about any shortcomings within a relationship, for God’s sake, own it. Own it and make it right. That’s how healthy people handle things. But never take the blame for something that is not your fault.

My definitive conclusion is for those of us who feel any guilt over a broken relationship, are beyond confused as to how things evolved into such chaos, are wondering if we are to blame, and are searching for answers to the dynamics of a situation that is completely foreign to us in order to try to understand it fully, then we are not the problem. People with the problem don’t think they have a problem so they will do no research to fix themselves because they don’t believe they are in need of any fixing.

Here is some information on the personality tests:

The purpose of the Myers-Briggs Type Indicator® (MBTI®) personality inventory is to make the theory of psychological types described by C. G. Jung understandable and useful in people’s lives. The essence of the theory is that much seemingly random variation in the behavior is actually quite orderly and consistent, being due to basic differences in the ways individuals prefer to use their perception and judgment. For more information, visit: http://www.myersbriggs.org/my-mbti-personality-type/mbti-basics/

Free personality tests:

https://www.16personalities.com/free-personality-test

http://www.humanmetrics.com/cgi-win/jtypes2.asp

Please share your thoughts and results of your Personality Test in the comments. I would also love to hear if you feel that if you are an INFJ, you’ve been subjected to being taken advantage of too due to your flexible, good nature.


Leave a comment

Drop The Rope!

In a previous blog of mine, “Conflict,” (https://peaceperspectiveblog.wordpress.com/2016/03/11/conflict/) I wrote: “Did you know you have a choice of how to respond to a conflict contrary to your instinctive reactions to participating in it and making it worse? Seems like a silly question, but I think that many of us feel that when conflict arises we must initially fight back at the same level, contribute to the nastiness, and participate in the escalation in order for our viewpoint to be heard. How refreshing to know that we don’t have to do this.”

Before I even heard the term, “drop the rope,” at times, I was already doing it without being aware of the concept.

However, at times I didn’t drop the rope. I felt compelled to continue on with battles filled with utter nonsense. Battles which should have never been battles to begin with and I fought them until the point of mental exhaustion. Years ago, I was completely unaware of the diabolical dynamics of each bizarre encounter I was engaged in. My mind could not, would not, and still does not process the level of insanity of which I had to reason with. Each encounter left me baffled and emotionally drained.

In my futile attempt to comprehend why someone doesn’t understand the basic fundamentals of common sense, common courtesy, and basic human decency, I had an immense desire to do whatever I could to instill logic into an illogical situation. I kept playing till it made me crazy. I couldn’t understand why nothing ever got resolved despite offering every ounce of compromise, peace, and kindness in the spirit of reconciliation and unity.

Then…there came a day when the heavens opened, the light shined and everything became abundantly clear. I stumbled upon a friend’s Facebook post on narcissism and was curious and there it was! The very first article I read told me everything I needed to know and I finally learned what I was dealing with. When that moment hit, I knew once and for all that no matter what I did, what I said, or how I did anything, it was never going to be enough and I’d never win. That is when I learned to “drop the rope.”

In healthy relationships, dropping the rope is easy as neither side desires for a conflict or disagreement to escalate to the point that it threatens a friendship or relationship. Each side attempts to practice an innate self-control and would never overstep boundaries to intentionally hurt the other person. They are well aware that to begin verbally and personally attacking the other person with dialogue that has nothing to do with what is being discussed is completely unacceptable and will no doubt lead to dissension. They understand that whatever is being discussed is certainly not worth jeopardizing a friendship or relationship. Disagreements end when both sides respectfully agree to disagree and the moment is over. Notice I said respectfully agree to disagree. Ending a heated conversation with a series of demands, insults, threats, and punishment is not respectfully agreeing to disagree. It’s bullying.

In healthy relationships, both sides are subconsciously “dropping the rope” because it’s a natural instinct in good, decent people who do not want to fight and understand people are allowed to have a different viewpoint.

However, when you are involved in a conflict or disagreement with a toxic person, it is important that you quickly recognize when you are in a situation that is unresolvable. Not because you are unwilling to resolve issues, but the other party is unwilling. Their main goal is control and they refuse to respectfully accept your point of view while demonstrating authority over you.

So, what exactly is dropping the rope? It’s a beautiful mental tool to utilize when conflicts arise and how to keep yourself peaceful. Think of the old-school game of “tug of war.” If one team should “drop the rope” in the middle of the game, what happens? The game is over. In the case of tug of war, the team that dropped the rope loses. However, the exact opposite is the case when you drop the rope in any conflict. The person who drops the rope wins!

The concept of “dropping the rope” simply means you refuse to continue to engage in an argument that is bouncing back and forth with no end in sight. You assess the situation and determine that is not resolving and getting too heated. Rather than escalating the conflict further by continuing to contribute to it, you calmly diffuse the situation by changing the subject or ending the argument altogether. You do your part to achieve peace for both you and the other party.

Notice I said your goal is to achieve peace for both you and the other party. It’s not meant to be a demonstration of your dominance over the disagreement. When done correctly and lovingly, it is good for both parties. However, with an unhealthy person, even this will look like conflict as they manipulate your good intentions to peacefully end an argument with accusing you of something more sinister. This is confirmation that you are in a no win situation and now dropping the rope not only means ending the argument but departing from their company.

So yes! You are winning because by dropping the rope, you have just achieved peace for you regardless of whether or not the other party does their part in dropping the rope! You have sent a clear message that you wish to no longer engage in a conversation going nowhere and your relationship and your peace are more important that proving a point. You are wise enough to recognize the unreasonable nature of the other party to not accept opposing views and you are doing yourself a huge favor by ending your part in it.

If you dropping the rope and walking away for your peace makes them think they won, so be it! Make it a goal to get to the point where winning means you are secure in your convictions, you no longer need to provide extensive explanations for your beliefs and peace is your ultimate goal.

I wish I had paid more attention to the many red flags warning me things were not right long ago instead of justifying them. I didn’t understand the complexity of what I was dealing with and either tried to reason my way to resolution with each unique scenario to no avail or complied (submitted) for the sake of peace. Dropping the rope is not complying or submitting, it’s recognizing you’re in a no-win situation and your peace is more important.

So my friends, whether you are involved with a narcissist or merely stating your political opinions, when discussions begin to turn into verbal and personal attacks, everything you say is twisted into something you never intended and is now being used against, you are unable to defend your stance or attempt to shut down the most mind-boggling incomprehensible dialogue, do yourself a huge favor and drop the rope!


Leave a comment

Happy Holidays – Reclaiming Your Peace!

The Holidays are upon us. A time when families come together in love and unity to enjoy each other’s company as we celebrate our beliefs, in our case, the birth of Christ.

Great food, fellowship, and gift exchanges all set the mood for a lovely and festive gathering. Laughter, joy, and a spirit of love engulf the room when you are with loving family and friends who have set aside time to be with one another to keep old traditions alive or begin new ones. What a beautiful and exciting time!

Unless…

Toxic family members will ruin all of this. Family members who ignore toxic behavior will also ruin all of this.

Toxic people are so used to their dysfunctional thought-process of control, manipulation, vindictiveness and victim mentality, they don’t realize the level of awkward they bring to a gathering. They are so deep into their own little world of delusion, they truly believe that they are justified in their toxic behavior. They drain the room of all joy and fill it with an oppressive darkness that permeates and disrupts the natural instinct to unite, bond, and love one another. Instead, the gathering is filled with an uncomfortable “white elephant” in the room. Members of the family are conditioned to walk on eggshells as they have learned to be careful to say the right things, in the right way so as not to offend anyone or not to have their words twisted to mean something unrecognizable from what they were initially intended. Fear stops people from confronting this oppression and dysfunction and everyone tries to muddle through the gathering like there’s not really a bully in the room controlling every little aspect of the evening with their toxic behavior. It’s mentally exhausting!

It’s quite the cycle of insanity that has no end if the choice is to ignore and enable the toxic individual. Toxic Behavior + Enabling = Continued Toxic Behavior. Why would they change if there are no consequences for their actions?

Ahhhh, then there’s the one being bullied or “targeted.” This is the person that is singled out to receive intimidating glares, blatant ignoring, patronizing yet civil responses from the bully for the sole purpose so as to not reveal what they are really doing to the target in front of others. They are masterfully covert as they publically but slyly punish you for disagreeing with them on a sensitive matter that exposed their heightened insecurities and shame, or because you were the only bold person to ever stand up to them and refuse to tolerate their toxic behavior as they overstepped many of your very sacred boundaries. Incidents (aka simple disagreements) from the past by you only fuel their behavior and they consolidate them into a highly concentrated bomb of hateful negativity directed solely toward you. How festive!

While everyone in the room may feel uncomfortable from the overwhelming oppressive behavior because “they know” but they won’t say anything and look the other way, the targeted individual will be made to feel absolutely worthless and utterly insignificant by the family bully. The toxic person will see nothing wrong with their behavior because according to them, they are justified in everything they do. They actually believe they are having a “peaceful holiday” because they have agreed to “be nice to you in front of others” for the sake of peace. What’s even more twisted is that they actually believe this is a gracious act on their part toward you and that they are taking the high road by doing this.

If this sounds even a little familiar to you, please do yourself a huge favor this Holiday Season and put a stop to it immediately. Stand up for principals, morals, and your self-respect. If family members ignore the one person dictating the toxic tone of a family gathering or they enable them by not calling them out on their behavior or turn a blind eye to what they are doing, even if you have no issue with them, remove yourself from all future family gatherings that include the bully and send a clear message that it will no longer be or should be tolerated. For some of you, this may mean spending Christmas alone or breaking traditions. So be it! A choice needs to be made for the state of your mental and emotional well-being. I choose to not be subjected to a stressful, toxic environment blanketed under a “holiday gathering” for the sake of “peace” and I choose to not expose my children to it so that they become conditioned to accept that this is normal behavior within a family. It is not normal! It is dysfunctional in the highest form. This is not peace. No one can or should be able to redefine peace according to their dysfunctional mental state and whacked ideology.

Most importantly: If you have children, use this as a teachable moment to show them that this is inappropriate behavior that is not to be tolerated no matter who the bully is – even if it’s a family member. Teach them we are not to tolerate it, nor are we ever to behave like it. There is a fine balance between grace, mercy and forgiveness and being bullied and mentally and emotionally abused.

Your kids are watching how you are navigating through such encounters with a toxic family member. Be sure to always remain civil but never allow someone to treat you with disrespect. Call it out and take a stand and show everyone who is not brave enough to stand up to the bully that even if you have to stand alone, you will always stand for what is right! That is what our family has done. It was very difficult at first as we saw the true colors of those we thought were beloved family and friends. Their lack of support, concern, and empathy spoke volumes as we were left to deal with this nightmare on our own. But, it has gotten easier for us as we slowly learned that those who did not support us, care enough about us to even ask how we are doing, recognize the integrity our family stands for, or stand up and defend us are not really worth the time we devoted or tears we cried being hurt over their abandonment and silence.

After a few years of taking our stand and refusing to be in the company of toxic behavior, we have been lucky enough to begin new traditions with loving family and friends in a healthy environment of love, laughter, joy and true peace. It is truly refreshing and my kids immediately noticed a sense of lightheartedness and true peace and love in our new traditions. No games, no power struggles, no controlling oppressive darkness. Simple, normal, happy gatherings with healthy, stable people.

If you don’t have anyone else, think about starting your own new traditions. Offer to volunteer somewhere on the holidays, a church, nursing home, hospital and give back. Invite people from work who may also be alone or from your church and start some new traditions. It can happen and it can be beautiful again!

Please share your story in the hope that you may help others who are in this situation. Offer some advice or share your pain so we can offer you hope for a better future. You don’t have to stay stuck in a toxic situation for the sake of peace.

Merry Christmas!


Leave a comment

Rejected Reconciliation – What next?

This is a post that I’ve been looking to find somewhere else. I’ve been searching for answers to this burning question I’ve had for years: What if you know you’ve done everything in your power to resolve a conflict and still receive brutal rejection from a bully who wants to control even the outcome of a reconciliation?

I’ve sat through countless sermons on forgiveness and reconciliation. I’ve read God’s Word and am quite knowledgeable about His instructions on the matter. I honestly know it like the back of my hand. I fully understand it yet throughout each teaching I’ve heard, I always sit there on the edge of my seat, waiting for the part that instructs you on what to do when you’ve done all those things and are still up against a brick wall with someone.

That is the sermon I want to hear. That is the blog I want to read. That is the information I am searching for. I want to hear it from someone else. I want to read it from another perspective.

I have my thoughts on what to do in this scenario and since I can’t find anything on this topic, I’m going to go ahead answer my own question.

So, I am a bible believing Christian. I believe we are to be obedient to God’s Word in everything. I do my best to try to follow his Word. I am a Christian. That doesn’t translate to I am perfect. At least not for me. Some Christians, however, may feel this way, thus giving the rest of us a bad reputation.

I’ve learned a lot throughout my journeys. I was not always in tune with everything in God’s Word, but I always had deep solid convictions which always kept me on the right path. I’ve made mistakes but always came back to what I knew to be true about being obedient to God.

So, back to my question. What happens when you’ve done everything biblically correct? You’ve extended grace and mercy in such a way that you consciously put your own painful feelings aside from someone who has hurt you so deeply it has left a permanent scar on your brain because you know deep down inside that you are to do what is right in God’s eyes – not your own eyes. Pushing through your damaged psyche at the works of someone else’s hands and yet finding the grace to still reach out and attempt to wipe the slate clean in the spirit of peace and you are still met with a brand new fueled retaliation, an even more controlling and condescending tone from a verbally abusive bully.

Here’s my answer. It’s not me, it’s them. Plain and simple. I’ve wracked my brain over and over again trying to find answers as to why and how and everything in between. It’s very very simple. It was never about me.

Someone who refuses true peace and resolution from a humble and open heart clearly has some deep rooted issues of their own and it is no reflection on me. Someone who would rather defiantly hold their ground and refuses to compromise in any way as a demonstration of power shows how weak one really is. One who has a philosophy of “my way or no way” and equates peace to I rather be alone than abide by your stupid rules of mutual respect and kindness ends up on an island and a very lonely life. When allowed, bitterness will consume you and drive your reckless decisions and lead you to self-destruction.

Pride goes before a fall my friends and I am witnessing it before my very eyes. While it’s quite sad watching as someone continually makes poor decisions with a rebellious spirit of “I’ll do what I want!” it is so necessary and important to remove yourself as part of the equation because it has nothing to do with you. Stop taking other people’s poor behavior personally. You are not the issue. You never were. EVER!

With each ugly encounter I endured, I began to see more and more that it was never about me. With each act of humility I demonstrated toward peace that was brutally rejected, I began to see a light at the end of the tunnel. With each act of kindness I attempted from my heart that was brutally dismissed and mocked, the light became brighter and brighter.

If I fought, acted in the same manner, stooped to the hellish level of ugly I had been provoked to do, I would never know the depth of the issue that I had been dragged into. I would be part of the problem. But I never was, because I never stooped that low.

It took my acts of utmost humility for me to understand exactly what I was dealing with all along. Had I not had such humility in my efforts, I may have never understood the complexity of the darkness I was dealing with.

MAN! That statement above is so powerful and as I typed, it just effortlessly flowed out of me, it is a revelation of which I am so incredibly in awe of! It’s the answer to all my questions!

The reason I know this for sure is because I see the polarizing differences in our lives. My life is filled with blessing galore. Outside of a nasty conflict that we never wanted, tried to avoid and resolve for four years and never have been involved in anything even resembling the darkness we encountered with someone who has a continual flow of chaos and turmoil in their life, we are blessed with a very stable, peaceful life. We are not only blessed in the worldly realm but spiritually as well, which is most important. My family, children, and marriage all have God’s hands in them and that alone is proof that humility and obedience get rewarded.

It took me a long time to get here and I’m finally here. Healing. Not healed, because it’s a process but I’m on my way with a renewed mind.

Now, I want to take the lessons I learned and I want to desperately help all of you out there who have been wounded by mean-spirited people or by narcissistic sociopaths, and tell you it was never about you. Don’t allow anyone to change who you are because they have bitterness and hate in their heart. Don’t allow anyone to control, demean, belittle, verbally abuse and bully you – stand up and have a voice even if you are standing alone.

It is possible to be graceful and merciful and obedient to God while still standing up and demanding respect for yourself. Never stoop to a level that is beneath you. That’s on them, not you. God will vindicate the righteous – those that are obedient to his instructions.

Humility and obedience will get rewarded. Have patience for it to be revealed in your life as you continue to live in this manner. Any small kind act that is difficult for you to do toward someone who is not deserving is an act of humility and God will see it. You will be rewarded for it if you have a heart for doing what is right and not doing what you want and feel.

I am living proof of one who has walked in obedience when it was difficult and am seeing God’s blessing throughout my life. His promises are real and true!

Author’s Request: I’d really like to get more traffic on this blog and really need your assistance. If you find this blog to be helpful and insightful, please consider sharing it to your Facebook/Twitter, or other social media. If any of you are members of Facebook pages that deal with this topic, please post a link to this blog so I can reach more people. Thank you in advance for helping me attempt to help others who have been or are going through painful times in their lives.

Psalm 135:14
For the LORD will vindicate his people and have compassion on his servants.

Proverbs 16:18
Pride goes before destruction and a haughty spirit before a fall.

Proverbs 29:23
One’s pride will bring him low, but he who is lowly in spirit will obtain honor.

James 4:6
God resists the proud but gives grace to the humble.


4 Comments

Attempting Peace with a Narcissist

Right off the bat, forgive me for using a title for this new post that is an oxymoron. It’s a contradiction of words. Peace and Narcissist do not belong in the same sentence. It’s like they need their own paragraphs…perhaps even their own chapters; that’s how far away peace and narcissist are from each other.

How do you bring reason to an unreasonable situation? How do you insert logic into an illogical mind? How do you begin to rationalize with someone so irrational?

Encounters with a narcissist are dizzyingly incomprehensible. Each and every encounter leaves your mind baffled and confused as it repeatedly asks, “What just happened?”

How can one strategically attempt to craft the correct words and actions, pre-planning every step of the way so as not to offend or anger someone who believes their land of delusion is reality and still be brutally shot down because it was once again not sufficient enough to satisfy their domination over you?

You finally think you’ve arrived at the precisely chosen peaceful, loving, merciful walk-on-eggshell verbiage in order to approach an unapproachable person for no other goal than to try to resolve situations which derived from absolute nonsense to begin with provoked and instigated by an overbearing controlling bully with a wacked ideology, only to be met with a new round of more demands, more belittling, more demeaning, and more control.

I’m really not that slow of a learner but why don’t I know this yet? Ugh. I think this time I finally get it.

It’s not because I’m unintelligent. It’s because of how I do life. I give others another chance. I give others the benefit of the doubt. I try to find the good in the bad. It’s the mentality by which I live by.

Here’s the revelation I finally get. I am trying to apply social graces, civility, normality, logic, and rationale to someone who doesn’t grasp the most basic common sense behaviors and norms that stable, healthy members of society live by. Whew! That’s a relief. I get it!

Yes, I get it. However…I still can’t process it and it’s still dizzyingly incomprehensible to me.

Keep on doing what is right and that includes removing unresolvable toxic relationships once and for all.

lowerstandards


6 Comments

Abusive Relationships

When we think of an abusive relationship, our minds automatically gravitate toward physical abuse. One that leaves visible scars or bruises as evidence of the abuse. This visual evidence prompts compassion and inquiry from others. The abused is able to release pain by explaining circumstances and even implicate the abuser. After all, there is evidence that cannot be denied.

Unless you have personally been subjected to emotional and mental abuse, I’m going to boldly declare that you have no idea the level of pain inflicted on a person’s mental state. Verbal abuse, shunning, rejection, berating, and belittling takes an enormous toll on one’s emotional state. That, coupled with carefully crafted lies in order to discredit and devalue someone, is part of the abuser’s diabolical agenda to vindictively hurt someone.

While I’ve never been physically abused, I’m also going to boldly declare that I believe it is most likely equal in its effect on a person. Yes, there are no scars or bruising on the outside as evidence but that doesn’t minimize the abuse and the pain going on in the inside. Mental and emotional abuse leaves internal scars and bruises no one can see or understand. And because it can’t be visually seen, others don’t offer compassion and there is no inquiry about the pain because they don’t know what you are enduring.

Here’s a clue: Emotional and mental abuse will reveal itself through sadness, anger, insecurity, and even paranoia. It will reveal itself through the insatiable desire to talk about the pain and find reasons to explain why and how…why did it happen and how did I let it? It reveals itself through an overbearing need to seek justice against the abuser by uncovering their false mask to everyone.

I’ve been very lucky in my life to be mostly surrounded by stable, healthy individuals and good relationships. People who know and understand boundaries. People who live by societies norms and live life with mutual respect and kindness. People who know not to burst into someone’s home and begin verbally abusing them in front of their family and then storm out exclaiming, “I can’t deal with her!” People who know that sending multiple profanity-laced texts to a “family member” is unacceptable and warrants an apology, not justification. People who know how to practice self-control and resolve disagreements in a calm, civil, and rational manner not throw explosive temper tantrums when they don’t get their way. People who don’t rationalize hate and relentlessly punish someone for disagreeing with them in order to make them pay. The list of insanity is endless for those who have a very unhealthy view of relationships.

I’ve always been known to my closest friends for giving the benefit of the doubt way too much. I am the girl that maintained certain friendships even though they were unhealthy and lots of work. I’m the one who overlooks things for the sake of peace, grace and even hope. Hoping the things I witnessed were just a season of questionable behavior toward me or to others. I guess I could also confess that there was probably a smidge of denial in my overlooking too. My mind doesn’t comprehend irreprehensible behavior, so, therefore, when I witness it, I’m left thinking that there has to be some justifiable reason behind it and truly people cannot be this cruel to others. My heart usually always goes to the underlying cause…the root of the problem. Privy to information as only one in a close relationship has, the root of the issues has always been what prompts me to extend that grace and to give one more chance.

I rather be known as the fool that gave the toxic person one more chance out of grace and humility than be known for being the toxic person.

Yet another lesson I have learned. Grace can and should be the driving force in all conflicts. However, historic events reveal the true character of people. There are people who don’t want peace and only want to fight. Their ultimate goal in conflict is control. They thrive on chaos and turmoil. They believe they truly have authority over others and will go to great lengths to display this egotistical entitlement and try to dominate others with bullying and demands. Most always, their lives are a shattered mess, they’re exhausted from living a lie, and they wear a false mask of charm, peace and joy. They deflect what’s really going on in their own life by drawing negative attention to someone else with lies in order to set the stage that they’re not the only one with issues when the truth about their lives and who they are is ultimately revealed. If they’re going down, they’re going to take someone down with them.

It’s quite the game they play. Unfortunately, many times, others cannot see it and that is what is so mentally tormenting to someone who has been at the brunt of their horrendous verbal, emotional, and mental abuse. Watching as others believe they are charming and even feel sorry for them having no idea the level of ugly you have been subjected to.

I am a firm believer that truth will always be revealed at some point in time. However, sometimes you have to nudge the truth to come out to those who will listen because your abuser is a master manipulator. Allowing the abuser to paint a false picture of you with lies while portraying themselves as a victim by not speaking up with the truth is only submitting to their brutal control. At some point, it has to end.

I always believed these scriptures:

Romans 12:19
Do not take revenge, my dear friends, but leave room for God’s wrath, for it is written: “It is mine to avenge; I will repay,” says the Lord

Galatians 6:7-9

7 Be not deceived; God is not mocked: for whatsoever a man soweth, that shall he also reap.
8 For he that soweth to his flesh shall of the flesh reap corruption; but he that soweth to the Spirit shall of the Spirit reap life everlasting.
9 And let us not be weary in well doing: for in due season we shall reap, if we faint not.

However, I had a recent revelation. After four years of being silent and allowing my abuser to control me by telling a distorted version of the nightmare we have been living under her domineering authority to anyone who would listen, it is time to speak up with the truth. Sometimes we have to be a participant in our own victories.

Perhaps the lesson is not to “Be still and know that I am God” but the lesson is courage! 

And then this hit me:

David Giant