Jesus accepted his personal limits and this helped him enjoy life and be loving. In John 7 we see an example of our Lord setting a boundary on a holiday. We discuss this and other Biblical examples of how “less is more” — for Advent and for daily life. Saying no helps you say yes when it’s most important!
Let’s appreciate the coming of Christ this Advent season! To do that, we invite you into a fun Nativity meditation that fosters soul talk with friends. Also we discuss examples of Jesus inviting us into his “easy yoke” to be relaxed and fruitful in stressful times — like the busyness of the Christmas season!
We all deal with conflict in our close relationships. Surprisingly, Jesus says, “Blessed are the peacemakers for they’ll be called children of God.” Most people misunderstand this beatitude and look for the blessing in making peace rather than in being a loved child of God. Bill and Kristi share their stress and pain from a conflict and show how the Prince of Peace helped them repair it.
Dumping on people it’s not helpful! Effective listening enables people to feel cared for and to take personal personal responsibility — it doesn’t “fragilize” them. We discuss an example in parenting. Bill’s Bible study and reflective meditation from Habakkuk helps us be strengthened in faith through venting emotion wisely.
A pastor shares, “I thought it was wrong to vent emotions. I didn’t want to name negative emotions and make them more real so I just kept them inside.” Repressing emotions puts them in your body and diminishes your capacity to love and lead well. Kristi helps Bill process his feelings about Brennan Manning’s memoir confessions of ongoing alcoholism and deceit during his ministry.
This is the cry of “J. P.’s” heart. We share his story of not feeling God’s presence, struggling with depression and alcohol, being judged. His earnest faith, spiritual disciplines, and service in church aren’t helping. He asks, “Bill and Kristi, what would you say to me?” If you or someone you know relates to J. P., tune in for empathy, affirmation, and spiritual formation coaching.