Rebecca Duvall

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Covered In Prayer

prayA few weeks prior to my husband’s chemo treatment, I heard about other women whose husbands had medical treatments being done. Each of these women were by their husbands side during and after the treatments. They had taken a step back from their responsibilities to be available to care for them. This was not my plan.

This made me question myself. Was I being selfish not adjusting my schedule to be with my husband? I decided to go to God with this question. Thankfully, I had asked, a few weeks earlier, to be lifted up in prayer after sharing my thoughts and fears about my husband’s health issues. This helped me focus on God and what He desired me to do. After spending some time praying and meditating, I felt God wanted me to trust He would be there and in all the details of my husbands treatment. He wanted me to focus on what He wanted ME to do, not worry about what or how others were doing things.

I find myself continually comparing myself to others or what the world expects of me. Sometimes it’s hard to remember God’s opinion is the most important, especially when I’m surrounded by the world.

My husband’s first chemo treatment was Tuesday. I went to my BSF leaders meeting as planned, took my daughter to school and stopped for gas on the way up to meet my husband. I had expected to be there until 4 or 5 that evening. The treatment was planned for 8-hours, depending on how things went. There was a long list of possible side effects that could happen while administering the drug.

As I arrived, I found my husband sitting with a smile on his face. I know he wasn’t feeling 100%, but he wasn’t letting it define his day and was dealing with it all very well. The nurse checked his IV and said he would be done and out of there within 30 minutes. This was at 1 o’clock. At that moment I felt God’s presence. I remembered He had promised to be there and take care of everything. Later, after talking to my husband about how things played out, he said he felt the presence of God, the Holy Spirit, as well.

No one will be able to stand against you all the days of your life. As I was with Moses, so I will be with you; I will never leave you nor forsake you. ~ Joshua 1:5

When we returned home, I was so excited about what God had done for us. I had to share it with a friend. She said the most wonderful thing that helped me put things in perspective. She said, “You were covered in prayer, so you can rest in the fact it was all filtered through the hands of God.” That is such a beautiful image, don’t you think?

My husband has had very little effects from his first chemo treatment. Praise God! I can’t be surprised, because he WAS covered in prayer. We were both covered in prayer. Our family and the entire situation was covered in prayer, and continues to be. I’m so thankful my husband and I both reached out to everyone around us. There are some amazing prayer warriors out there and I’m grateful they are a part of our lives.

If you’re going through a trial in your life, big or small, please reach out to those around you and ask for help. Ask for prayer. It’s beautiful and uplifting to be covered in prayer. If you’re between trials, please take time to look around you to see whom you could offer help and prayer to. Is there someone around you who needs to be covered in prayer?

For everyone who asks receives; the one who seeks finds; and to the one who knocks, the door will be opened. ~ Matthew 7:8

My prayer for us today ~ Father God, thank you for the gift of prayer, which is a way to communicate with You. I pray those who are in need of help, reach out and ask for help. I pray those who are able to, reach out to those around them who are in need of help, Amen.

When you don't know what to do, Pray

 

 

In His Way

holding bookAbout three years ago I heard the gentle whisper of God saying He wanted me to share with others my struggles. He wanted me to write how He helped me overcome my trials as I walked through them. At first, I laughed and blew it off. Yes, I use to do that when God first asked me to do something I’ve never done before. Especially if it’s something I’ve never even considered doing. Then as He usually does, He continued to remind me what He wanted me to do, until I sat down and talked to Him about it.

My excuses not to write my story were endless.

  • I’m not good at writing
  • I don’t know proper grammar to write a book
  • I don’t know what to write about
  • Who cares about my life and what I’m going through
  • I don’t have time to write
  • I don’t know the first thing about writing a book

As I gave God all of my excuses, which I thought were pretty good ones, He continued to tell me what I was to do. Once I finally decided to try, not because I wanted to, but because I wanted to show God how I couldn’t, He either put people in my path, or directed me to people, who would help and encourage me to write.

Now may the God of peace, who through the blood of the eternal covenant brought back from the dead our Lord Jesus, that great Shepherd of the sheep, equip you with everything good for doing his will, and may he work in us what is pleasing to him, through Jesus Christ, to whom be glory for ever and ever. Amen. ~ Hebrews 13:20-21

It’s been an amazing three years! I feel blessed by the many wonderful people God has brought alongside me to complete the task of writing my story. Actually, it’s not just my story. It’s a story about family, marriage and coming to faith. So it’s my family’s story, written in my perspective. Below is the brief description of the book, which you’ll find on the back cover of, ‘In His Way’.

Throughout much of my married life, I lived under the illusion that I had it all together – it was everyone else that needed fixing. Several years into my second marriage my husband, a Deputy Sheriff, became a workaholic and was never home. Meanwhile, I became a volunteeraholic, too busy to face the fact that we had become two strangers under one roof, raising three kids.

God revealed Himself to me through the different women I volunteered with. As my heart slowly opened to God’s presence, my marriage came crashing down around me. As I cried out for God’s help, I discovered my husband’s affair. I found myself surrounded by faithful people who gave me the strength to face the problems in my marriage and the tools needed to begin fixing it.

Over the next four years, my husband’s health deteriorated and he was forced to retire. Through this God continually showed me I was In His Way and then, when He knew He had my attention, He would proceed to show me how to do things In His Way. In the end, what God told me to do, saved my husband’s life, and our marriage. What was broken is now fixed by the grace and love of God.

I wrote this book for God and now I give it to Him, trusting it will be read by everyone He wishes to read it. My hope is that it helps others understand the love God has for them. I hope it turns people to God and the beautiful life He has planned for them. I hope it helps others get out of God’s way so they too can do things In His Way.

My book is now available on Amazon in paperback and ebook (Kindle). If you choose to read it, I would appreciate it if you would leave a review on Amazon. Even if you don’t like it. I just ask that you ask yourself how you would feel if someone wrote that about you before leaving your comment. I look forward to hearing your thoughts.

My prayer for us today ~ Father God, thank you for the encouragement and enabling You give us to step out and be all You know we can be. I pray we each take time to be quiet and still so we can hear Your gentle whisper, Amen

In His Way

Forgiveness and Healing

Jaylin PalacioI would like to introduce you to Jaylin Palacio. I immediately connected with her when I read her story. We’ve both been through similar heartaches and our desire to help others who have experienced this pain is something God has put on our heart. Her story explains how she used prayer and the power of God to see her through a painful time in her life.

I have had one true love of my life (other than the Lord). His name is Jay. We met when I was 16, and we married when I was 19. Twenty years later, I discovered that he was committing adultery. I was devastated beyond words. Never in my life have I felt such an intense ache in my heart. The one person that I trusted the most hurt me so deeply. How does one cope with such a painful ordeal?

In the aftermath of adultery, the flood of emotion can make a person crazy. But no matter how chaotic our life gets, there is one source of strength that never changes. No matter how unreliable people can be, God will never leave us or forsake us (Joshua 1:5). The Bible is our guide for living, and it is the ultimate resource for how to respond to the inevitable trials and tribulations of life.

Some of the guidelines found in the Bible are “Be kind and compassionate to one another, forgiving each other, just as in Christ God forgave you” (Ephesians 4:32 NIV) and “Walk in the way of love, just as Christ loved us and gave himself up for us as a fragrant offering and sacrifice to God” (Ephesians 5:2 NIV). The Bible instructs us to be kind to each other, to be tenderhearted, to forgive one another, and to live a life filled with love. That is much easier said than done when you have been deeply hurt by someone you love. I did nothing wrong and did not ask to be put in this situation of immense pain. I was there because of the actions of two other people. This is the question I asked myself: How do I forgive when I have been hurt so badly?

Forgiveness is the last thing that we feel like doing when we are in so much pain. However, when we make the choice to forgive in obedience to God, He heals our hearts and leaves no bitterness in our spirit. When my world was turned upside down, I relied on the source of strength that never changes. I prayed in three general areas, and He answered my prayers in each area:

  1. Opening Jay’s Eyes. Jay was not acting like himself. He was saying and doing things that were so unlike the man I married. I could not wrap my mind around how a loving husband and father could leave his family. I prayed that God would intervene and that Jay would realize that he needed to come home. God answered that prayer in a tangible way. Jay came home six weeks after I started praying about this, and his eyes were definitely opened. He even said that he knew that people were praying for him because he felt so uncomfortable in his sin.
  1. Providing for My Needs. Ironically, my boss was the other woman, so that job ended when I found out about the affair. I could not collect unemployment because I voluntarily quit the job. My husband left, leaving me with no job and a huge mortgage payment that I could not pay. I prayed to my God who provides all my needs according to His riches in glory in Christ Jesus. Amazingly, all of my needs were met while I had no income. Once Jay returned, he started a new career that he loves, and I started to work as a paralegal. God has blessed Jay in his career so much that I am now able to stay home by choice. Thankfully, we did not lose the house while Jay was gone. We modified the loan after he came back resulting in a lower monthly payment and interest rate, and we are now rebuilding our credit.
  1. Healing My Broken Heart. In the midst of the anguish, I could not see how I would ever be able to function again. Since then, God has healed my heart in so many ways. I still remember the pain, but now the anger is gone. I feel so strong emotionally, and I want to help others who are dealing with the aftermath of adultery. I started a support group on Facebook called Christians Surviving Marital Infidelity which allows me to encourage others who are going through the pain that I remember well.

When I look back at this time in my life, I am reminded of the Footprints in the Sand poem. The Footprints in the sandauthor was dreaming about walking along the beach with the Lord. She noticed that during the low periods of her life, there was only one set of footprints. She questioned the Lord as to why He was not there for her during the lowest periods of her life. The Lord explained to her that He was carrying her during those times. In the same way, God carried me through this trial. I also recognize that even though we are all capable of being hurt by others, God gives us the ability to forgive. He also heals our hearts so that we can overcome the storms of life and come out stronger as a result.

 

Jaylin PalacioJaylin Palacio is the author of He Will Never Leave You, a first-person narrative about facing the aftermath of adultery, the faithfulness of God, and the healing power of forgiveness.  Forgiveness is the loyal spouse’s way to leaving the consequences in the hands of God and allowing God to heal the betrayed person’s heart. You can get to know more about Jaylin and check out her blog at http://jaylinpalacio.wordpress.com/know-someone-facing-the-aftermath-of-adultery/.

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