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Why Jesus Had To Die And Rise

Kristy Wyatt Easter Blog

My sister, Katie, and me. Easter 1989

Growing up, Easter was a big deal. My mom would dress my sister and me in matching dresses, hats, shoes, and handbags. We’d walk into church like we owned the place, counting down the minutes until the Easter Egg Hunt happened. We’d get home after family gatherings in a sugar-coma and full candy baskets. Yes, Easter was a big deal. Until one day, I understood what Easter really was. Then it was more than a big deal. It was the deal. An actual covenant between God and myself. An event that acknowledges my shortcomings and need for a savior. A savior who came, who died, who rose again for you, for me, for millions.

The story of Jesus is simple, and yet complex. It’s heartbreaking, and yet the absolute best news humanity has ever heard. It’s unbelievable, and yet it’s true.

Why Jesus Had to Die:kristywyatt.com Easter Cross
• Every human being has sinned. The price for sin is death. “Death” being an eternity spent apart from God. We have sinned and there are consequences for that sin. So God sent His son to die the death of a sinner on our behalf.
• But Jesus didn’t live a normal life while he was here. There is only one in the history of humanity who lived a perfect, sinless life – Jesus. He experienced all that we have experienced – grief, heartbreak, disappointment, joy, love – everything. The only difference is, he didn’t sin. He died the death we deserved, so that we may live.

Why Jesus had to Rise: Kristywyatt.com Easter Tomb
• Without rising three days later, Jesus would have just been another good guy who’d died a terrible death for something he believed in. By rising, he defeated the power of the grave. He proved he was, in fact, the son of God, the savior who was promised to us. He had to rise so that we could rise into our new life with Jesus.
• Jesus had to rise because he was meant to live inside of us. Jesus couldn’t stay in the dead in the tomb because there was more work to be done. He rose, proved that he was the way and the light of the world, and then he went to Heaven. And by that, I mean he ascended to Heaven while very much alive. When we accept the gift of salvation, Christ lives inside of us. He becomes a part of us.

If this isn’t a reason to celebrate, I don’t know what is! Guys, our savior came! He is risen! We are free from the chains that bound us! This Easter, commit to reading the gospel. You can download a reading plan here! Commit to spending time in prayer. You’re here on earth for a reason – allow God to reveal His plan to you. You are so precious to God that He sent His son to die on your behalf. He desires a relationship with you!
Easter is a time of great joy and celebration. I pray that you celebrate with the amazing family and friends God has placed in your lives. I pray that you send a heartfelt “thank you” up to our faithful God. I pray that you draw closer to our Lord and Savior. I pray that even in difficult times, you’re able to have peace in knowing that He will never forsake you.

Happy Easter from my family to yours!

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For God loved the world so much that he gave his only Son, so that everyone who believes in him may not die but have eternal life. For God did not send his Son into the world to be its judge, but to be its savior. John 3:16-17

“If the Spirit of him who raised Jesus from the dead dwells in you, he who raised Christ Jesus from the dead will also give life to your mortal bodies through his Spirit who dwells in you.” Romans 8:11

The angel spoke to the women. “You must not be afraid,” he said. “I know you are looking for Jesus, who was crucified. He is not here; he has been raised, just as he said. Come here and see the place where he was lying. Matthew 28:5-6

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Worship Medley – Reckless Love / Death Was Arrested | Caleb and Kelsey Mashup YouTube

Jesus Cross Forgiveness Blog Kristy Wyatt

Why You Need To Forgive

I’ve been told that I’m a good “forgiver”. I’ve been asked on more than one occasion, “Why do you still let so-and-so in your life after what they did?”. I used to shrug and say, “everyone makes mistakes, right?” But I really never gave it much thought. I assumed it was a part of my personality. The part of me that hates confrontation and will do anything – including forgive – to keep the peace. But these last few months, I’ve had to really test forgiveness. I’ve had the opportunity to forgive someone in my life, and forgive myself. In this process, I really dug deep into what forgiveness is and how it’s done.

To understand forgiveness, we must first seek the source – God.

Forgiveness Jesus BlogGod is the ultimate forgiver. I once heard someone say, “If Jesus had to die for your sins, then it’s not really forgiveness.” I can understand the misinterpretation of why Jesus had to die on the cross, and rise again. You see, forgiveness and consequences are not mutually exclusive. You can have the hardship of consequences while reaping the grace of forgiveness. In other words, while God forgave me for my sins, the consequences had to happen. There was still a price for my wrongdoing, just like when your teenager slacks off at school. You will forgive them, but they’re still going to lose video game privileges. That’s forgiveness with consequences.

God sent His one son to this earth to live a sinless life only to die the death of a sinner. Take that in for a moment. God loved us so much that he didn’t want us to suffer for an eternity for our sins. He gave the consequences to Jesus and the forgiveness to us. If God can forgive us for the horrible things we’ve done – and we’ve all done horrible things – who are we to deny forgiveness? Are we so holy that we are above God? Is our judgement higher than His? If the creator of this earth, of us, can look at an adulterer, a liar, a murderer, a bully, an abuser – the list can go on forever – with love and forgiveness, why on earth do we think we have the right to do any different? Perhaps we need to humble ourselves.

Please don’t misinterpret what I’m saying. Forgiveness is just that – forgiveness. It is not staying in a bad situation. You can forgive someone and still choose to let them go from your life. That would be part of the consequences they would experience.

Some might say that some people don’t deserve forgiveness. You’ll often hear someone who is upset say, “I’ll never forgive you for this.” But we must remember that withholding forgiveness doesn’t hurt the other person. It hurts us.

3 Ways Withholding Forgiveness Hurts Us:

Forgiveness Blog

  1. Holding on to hurt and anger is like a poison that slowly spreads throughout your body. You develop bitterness. It can change your whole outlook on life. It can make you physically ill, or cause you to sabotage important relationships. It could mean the difference between living a happy life, or a miserable life. When you truly forgive, you let that go. You don’t free the person who wronged you. You free yourself.
  2. When you’re unforgiving, you’re missing out on something God wanted you to learn. In this imperfect world, we have pain. It’s inevitable. Someone will do something to offend you and/or hurt you. When this happens, you can let that sit on your heart and weigh you down, or you can choose to forgive. Ask God what He wants you to learn from this experience. There is a lesson in everything. We’re just usually too consumed with our feelings to see what that lesson is.
  3. Withholding forgiveness will separate you from God. Let’s take a moment to reflect over our lives. We could all fill a notebook (or a few notebooks) with a list of our sins. We’ve hurt people; we’ve hurt God. We’ve been unfaithful and often times we try to justify it instead of repenting. Still, God forgives. His love is perfect and faithful regardless of our impure hearts. So imagine what it must feel like to God to forgive us absolutely everything, to send His son to die for our sins, only for us to withhold forgiveness to someone else, or even ourselves?

So, how do we forgive someone who has hurt us?Forgiveness Blog Kristy Wyatt

  1. Take a little time. There is nothing wrong with wanting a little space. Often times our hearts have to catch up with our brains. Give yourself a moment to catch your breath.
  2. Withhold your words. Hurtful words tend to fly when we’re hurting. You know that annoying saying “two wrongs don’t make a right”? Well, it’s true. If you handle tough situations with grace, you will only have to deal with forgiving the other person rather than forgiving them and yourself for the way you reacted.
  3. It’s likely you’ll have to forgive something over and over again. Sure last week you felt like you had a brand new start with someone. You’d forgiven them – all was well. But today, someone brought up the one thing that cut you deep, and the pain is fresh. Suddenly you’re back in the moment it all happened. You have to choose to forgive again. And again.
  4. Pray pray pray! God is a pro at forgiveness. So we should constantly be asking for His help with this. It’s His desire for us to live healthy, happy lives. Forgiveness is a part of that plan. Spend time with God in His word and in prayer. Open your heart. He will speak to you. He will help you through it.

With this being the week of Easter, it’s important for us to remember how much we need forgiveness in our lives. It’s as important to give forgiveness as it is to receive it. Offering grace where it isn’t deserved is the best way to show love for someone.

*Below is a link to a video. Please take a few minutes to watch it. Love and blessings you you all! xoxo

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Be kind and compassionate to one another, forgiving each other, just as in Christ God forgave you. Ephesians 4:32

Then Peter came to Jesus and asked, “Lord, how many times shall I forgive my brother or sister who sins against me? Up to seven times?” Jesus answered, “I tell you, not seven times, but seventy-seven times.” Matthew 18:21-22

Do not judge, and you will not be judged. Do not condemn, and you will not be condemned. Forgive, and you will be forgiven. Luke 6:37

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PLEASE watch this video! It will change the way you look at forgiveness.

“Forgiveness” by, Matthew West (Forgiveness Story)

Mean Girls and Friendship

We’ve all experienced interactions with “mean girls”. And if I’m being completely honest with you, I’ve been on both sides of the coin. I’ve been the mean girl, and I’ve been the mean girl’s target. Thankfully, I wasn’t a mean girl for long – my conscience couldn’t handle it. But just because I outgrew that behavior doesn’t mean everyone else has, or will.

cristian-newman-141895-unsplashOnce you’ve been a mean girl’s target, it’s easy to spot the signs of a mean girl. I was fairly new to my church and had just finished leading a worship song, when I saw a woman sitting in the 2nd row, pointing at me and laughing with her husband. It was all I could do not to start crying. I replayed the song in my head. Did my voice crack? Did I mess up the words? I ran my hands down my sides to make sure my shirt hadn’t ridden up and that my mom-belly was still covered. (Lord knows no one wants me to have a wardrobe malfunction.) But all was in place. With nothing else to examine, I had to face the music. I had been “mean girled” at church. And I was devastated.

Though I never told anyone about the incident, I cried about it. I prayed about it. I stewed about it. But I went on with my life, continued to sing at church, and ignored the situation. So imagine my surprise when the very woman who laughed at me asked to be my Facebook friend. My immediate reaction was “no way!”. I was sure this woman only wanted more ammunition. She would find a flaw in my mothering skills by reading my statuses and studying my pictures. She would look for my imperfections – and there are many. No. Absolutely no. But God told me yes. With a sigh and a dramatic roll of my eyes, I accepted the friend request.

To my disbelief, the hearts started rolling in. Not just likes, but hearts! She “hearted” a lot of my pictures and statuses. She commented on a few things and offered to participate in my daughter’s fundraiser. A feather could have knocked me over. Why was she being nice? Surely there was an ulterior motive. I thanked her for her support with the fundraiser, and then added another brick to the protective wall around my heart. I would not fall for the “nice” trick.bewakoof-com-official-205686-unsplash

As the months passed, we talked more and more on Facebook, then at church, and before I knew it, I liked her. I’d never mentioned the mean girl moment, and I decided to forgive her. She’d made a mistake. I have made countless of those. I had to put this behind me if I was going to give this new friendship a shot. So I did.

In this friendship, I found that she had a big heart. She was truly a wonderful woman. I began looking forward to our interactions, and that tall, thick wall I’d built crumbled down. She was in. This was the danger zone. In this place, she could really hurt me. Being this vulnerable with someone is hard when you’ve been “mean girled” because now you care about this person and what they think.

One day, while talking, she told me about one of the first times she’d heard me sing at church. She laughed and said, “I leaned over to my husband, pointed at you, and said ‘I sound just like that when I sing, right babe?’.” She said, “We both laughed so hard because I can’t sing at all!” I froze. I knew the day she was talking about. I knew exactly. I had completely misjudged what had happened. They weren’t making fun of me at all. In their own cute way, they had been complimenting me.

It still amazes me to think that I almost missed out on this amazing friendship with her over a misunderstanding. We forget that not everything is as it seems. It really seemed as if they were making fun of me. What if I had denied her friend request? What if I’d never been kind to her because I let anger, hurt, and bitterness simmer inside of me? What if she thought I was a mean girl because I wouldn’t talk to her? How different could this have turned out?

omar-lopez-296937-unsplashThis experience has taught me so much. I’m grateful that I chose to listen to God in this situation. I hope that when you’re presented with a similar situation, you’ll remember the following:

  • Even when things look a certain way, be sure before you react.
  • In all circumstances, treat everyone with kindness.
  • Forgive them and forgive yourself.
  • Seek God’s will in all your relationships.
  • Give people a chance – a real chance.

Okay, I know. Some of you have an actual mean girl that you’re dealing with. While I’d like to say it’s a misunderstanding, “mean girling” is a thing that totally exists. So I’ll pass on what I tell my daughter:

  • Show them what a kind person looks like. You can’t control them or their actions, but you can control yours. Don’t ever lower yourself to their level. Instead, show them what it’s like on your level and encourage them grow.
  • If it continues, they’re not your friend. It’s hard, but not everyone is good for you. You can choose to excuse yourself from interacting with that person without being a mean girl back. We’re called to be kind, but not take abuse. Kindness is not weakness.
  • Pray for them. This can be so difficult. The last thing we want to do is pray for someone who is mistreating us. But I promise, those who need love the most are the least lovable people. Let God work in them through you.

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Being a girl/woman is hard, right? But we aren’t meant to go through life alone. We need to lift each other up, encourage one another. My friends are a huge part of my life. I couldn’t get through a single day without my girlfriends. Support and love the women God brings into your life. They are a precious gift.

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Do to others as you would have them do to you.  Luke 6:31 (NIV)

Therefore, as God’s chosen people, holy and dearly loved, clothe yourselves with compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience. Bear with each other and forgive one another if any of you has a grievance against someone. Forgive as the Lord forgave you.  Colossians 3:12-13 (NIV)

My command is this: Love each other as I have loved you. Greater love has no one than this: to lay down one’s life for one’s friends.  John 15:12-13

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“We Need Each Other” by, Sanctus Real YouTube

“We Need Each Other” by, Sanctus Real Spotify