Perspective!

Perspective depends less on what you see, than it does the place from which you see.

One afternoon I was trying to read a book. While flicking through the pages and straining to read the small print, I thought: “I wish I had my reading glasses”. Then I found my reading glasses! They were sitting on the top of my head—right there, just waiting for me to put them on!  As I sat down to write this blog, I was reminded of this.

The eyes through which we view the world—ourselves, other people, situations and even God—is of enormous importance! Without my reading glasses on that afternoon, I couldn’t see clearly and it was bothering me.

I remember watching the second Paddington Bear movie a little while ago. Paddington wanted to buy a gift for his Aunt but he didn’t have enough money. So he began doing odd jobs for people to earn some extra money, including window cleaning. One man’s windows were so dirty that his view out of them was very obscured. Very little light could get into his house to allow him to see more clearly. He sat in his gloomy living room, grumpy and unhappy. His whole world view was his dark, gloomy house. Then Paddington came along with a bucket of soapy water and a sponge and cleaned the man’s windows. Light broke through and filled the entire living room. The man’s whole perspective changed instantly! He could see clearly. Things weren’t as bad as he thought. He found motivation to venture outside and meet people. He found joy and he found love!

Perspective! 

A way of looking and thinking; a particular attitude or way of regarding something.

A person’s perspective shapes their whole life and their view of the future. For example, have you ever felt depressed or anxious because you believed something or thought something, but then you got some news that changed the way you thought about that situation? So what happened? The good news you heard was a ray of light that shifted your perspective on that matter. In that moment you felt brighter, happier and even stronger.

There is darkness in this world that works hard to stop people from seeing God’s truth and light. It works hard to distort people’s views and cloud judgement through lies, deception and darkened imagery.

That’s why we need to hear from God! His Word is like the pair of reading glasses we need to put on to navigate through each day! His truth is the ray of light that needs to be spoken into the gloomy “living rooms” of life! God’s perspective will change EVERYTHING!

The entrance of Your words gives light; It gives understanding to the simple. I opened my mouth and panted, for I longed for Your commandments.

Psalm 119:130-131

Tracey Pekkanen

The Power of Forgiveness

Forgiveness is the fragrance that the violet sheds on the heel that has crushed it.

Mark Twain

Like most of you, I have had some great opportunities to be offended and hurt by the attitudes and words of others. I have had my seasons of grappling with forgiving.

Jesus spoke a lot about forgiveness—after all, it was the purpose of His earthly mission: to die for the forgiveness of the sins of the whole world (1 John 2:2).

At the end of Jesus’ earthly life, He was confronted—in a very raw and painful way—with the very message of forgiveness that He Himself had preached. He was now faced with the choice to forgive (or not) those who had falsely accused Him, condemned Him to die for a crime He didn’t commit, and subjected Him to torture, pain and the humiliation of the cross.

When offences come—and Jesus said they will certainly come (Luke 17:1)—we can find ourselves at a crossroads that can define us, depending on which way we turn: either the path of forgiveness, or the road that leads to bitterness and inevitable frustration.

Bitterness is a poisonous pill to swallow. It will rot the soul and body from the inside out! It is a defiler of many (Hebrews 12:15).

As Jesus hung there on the cross in His suffering and deep sorrow, He was offered a bitter drink to swallow, but He did not drink it:

Then they gave Him wine mingled with gall to drink, but He did not take it.

Mark 15:23

Jesus proved the power of forgiveness on the cross when He uttered the words: “Father, forgive them, for they know not what they do”.

You might be thinking: “Well they knew what they were doing when they said this… and when they did that.”  Reality check: the carnal nature is full of ego, ambition and fleshly appetites (not to mention hurts, fears and insecurities that drive its responses). So it shouldn’t surprise us then that offences will come, and that from time to time, someone may also need to forgive us.

Forgiveness is releasing a person from an obligation and cancelling a debt owed to you. You cannot change what happened in the past—what was said, what was done, what was left undone.

Unforgiveness drags the past into the present so that you are never free of it, but you have the power to keep past wrongs behind you (in the rear view mirror of your life), instead of a stumbling block in front of you.

As you keep your eyes fixed on the love of God towards you, you can keep moving forward with hope. That image in the rear view mirror becomes smaller and smaller, until it is eventually out of sight because you have moved on and turned a corner.

If you are struggling to forgive someone—or yourself—it is possible—with God’s help! Jesus is the ultimate healer and burden-bearer—the One who can restore your soul. You can let go of the offence by giving it over to Him. Remember He is intimately familiar with the power of forgiveness.

Life is too short to allow the mistakes and wrongs of others, or your own faults and failures, to imprison your heart for another minute.

Give yourself a better (and happier) future by refusing to be bitter and resentful. Jesus wants you free—free from bitterness and unforgiveness—free to live YOUR BEST PURPOSE-FILLED LIFE, with the peace of God standing guard over your heart and mind (Phil. 4:6-7).

It’s your time to shine! Forgive.

Prayer of Forgiveness

Dear Heavenly Father
I come to you in the Name of Jesus!
I bring to You all my hurt, anger and pain
I give you all the unforgiveness and bitterness I have held in my heart
I give all of it over to you and release my hold on it completely!
I let go of it right now!
I choose to forgive!
I receive your full and total forgiveness.
I receive your perfect peace.
Thank you for restoring and healing my soul.
Thank you that you love me!
Thank you that you said you would never leave me nor forsake me—no matter what!
In Jesus’ Name I believe I am free!
AMEN!

And forgive us our debts (trespasses and wrong doings), as we have forgiven our debtors [letting go of both the wrong and the resentment].

Matthew 6:12

Tracey Pekkanen

Forgiveness – Some Things You Need to Know

Forgiveness is the final curtain call that signals the show is over.

Tracey Pekkanen

Here are a few thoughts about what forgiveness is… and what it is not.

What Forgiveness Is

  • Forgiveness is always a choice—not a feeling. Feelings fluctuate and take time to heal, but you can make the choice to forgive today—it is an act of faith (and faith pleases God – Hebrews 11:6).
  • Forgiveness does not seek revenge—it does not relish in imagining harm towards someone nor delight in “getting even”.
  • Forgiveness is the final curtain call that signals the show is over—it’s not the dress rehearsal that plays out its lines before an imagined audience. Be careful not to continue talking about a suffered wrong with others, or continuing to self-dialogue about it. That has a tendency to water the roots rather than wither them.
  • Forgiveness is strength—not weakness. The flesh delights in holding a grudge (but the spirit is willing to forgive).
  • Forgiveness is humility—not humiliation. (“For the LORD takes delight in His people; He crowns the humble with victory. Psalm 149:4)

What Forgiveness Is Not

  • Forgiveness does not equal trust—if someone steals from you, then don’t trust them with your wallet!
  • Forgiveness does not mean you condone or agree with the behaviour.
  • Forgiveness does not do away with the law of the land—in the case of a criminal offence, you can be forgiven but still have to serve the time or pay the fine.
  • Forgiveness does not always mean forgetting—scars are still reminders, but they are no longer an open and festering wound.
  • Forgiveness does not necessarily mean keeping company with someone or letting them back into your life. Some relationships might be unhealthy and unwise. Always seek wisdom.
  • Forgiveness is not waiting for an apology—this holds a soul to ransom. The only person you are waiting on is you. Forgiveness is within your power to give!

And forgive us our debts (trespasses and wrong doings), as we have forgiven our debtors [letting go of both the wrong and the resentment].

Matthew 6:12

Tracey Pekkanen

© Copyright. Wired for Word Ministries. Unauthorised use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from the author and/or owner, is strictly prohibited. Permission is given to use excerpts and links, provided that full and clear credit is given to Wired for Word Ministries.

The Best is Yet to Come

It is more important to go slow and gain the lessons you need along the journey than to rush the process and arrive at your destination empty.

Germany Kent

In my house, just above the entrance to the hallway, hangs a sign that says: The best is yet to come“!  Sometimes I glance up at that sign and say those words out loud to remind myself that this is what I believe—the best is yet to come! Now I speak those words from an already blessed position (having already received so many good things), but God is not done with me… you…us yet! There are still dreams to be fulfilled; plans to unfold; places to step into; people to meet; harvests to reap—you get the picture. Yes, there is more! In God there is always more!

God is not a mediocre God so don’t limit what you can receive and achieve because of mediocre expectations! 

Definition of “Mediocre”

Ordinary, average, passable, just adequate, uninspired, undistinguished, unexceptional, unexciting, unremarkable.

It takes courage to hope against hope in the face of mediocre circumstances. It takes faith to believe what is not yet seen (Hebrews 11:1), when what is seen leaves us unsatisfied.

With God, you are stronger than your struggles and more fierce than your fears. God provides comfort and strength to those who trust in Him. Be encouraged, keep standing, and know that everything’s going to be alright.

Germany Kent

You have been called to hope with courage and believe! This is how Jesus operated in His humanity—and it’s how we live! Don’t think it strange that you are challenged in life—it’s so you can overcome! You are born of God for victory—not for mediocrity! (1 John 5:4)

Don’t be tricked into mediocre thinking. Jesus came to raise people up out of every form of bondage through the power of His resurrection (Gal. 2:20). Thoughts of defeat, unworthiness, fear and intimidation don’t belong to you.

A thief has only one thing in mind—he wants to steal, slaughter, and destroy. But I [Jesus] have come to give you everything in abundance, more than you expect—life in its fullness until you overflow!

John 10:10 (TPT)

The discovery of purpose begins with discovering the thoughts of God towards you.

God is masterful at taking the ordinary and turning it into the extraordinary! He can turn the average into the unusual! He inspires the uninspired! He takes the undistinguished and makes them stand out! He turns the unexceptional into the exceptional and those things that seem unremarkable can be transformed into that which is noteworthy! 

You do not serve a mediocre God and He does not see you as a mediocre person!
You are called to prosper in life (3 John 1:2)! In whatever station, calling or place, God’s desire is for you to succeed—to be an exceptional mother; a successful business man or woman; a remarkable teacher; an inspired writer… 

Bible definition of “Prosper”

To grant a prosperous and expeditious journey; to lead by a direct and easy way; to grant a successful issue; to cause to prosper; to succeed
(Strong’s Greek 2137)

Trust in the goodness of God towards you… in His redemptive power… in His forgiving disposition… in His loving nature! Cultivate an expectation of His very best for you every day! Put a faith “tug” on God’s Throne of Grace for the abundant supply available to you! (Hebrews 4:16)

You are exceptional, and God loves you with an exceptional love! Mediocrity is not your destiny. Believe for His best today, and trust for His best tomorrow.

Tracey Pekkanen

Pray and Believe

God wants us to have faith that He hears us when we pray, and that Heaven is on the move to influence, change and rearrange things to bring about the desired result.

Who is the one who condemns? Christ Jesus is the One who died, yes, rather who was raised, who is at the right hand of God, who also intercedes (prays) for us. Who will separate us from the love of Christ? Will tribulation, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or peril, or sword?

Romans 8:34-35

It is a comforting thought to know that someone is praying for you—speaking to God on your behalf. I remember a particular occasion some years ago. I was in a battle and feeling the pressure. Out of the blue my phone rang. It was a woman I knew. We only saw each other once or twice a year and she lived in a different city—so it was an unexpected phone call. She phoned to say: “You are on my heart and I have been praying for you”. That encouraged me and I remembered I was never alone in a battle. Never! 

One year ago my husband Joel & I met a woman named Julie. She ran a business that we had visited a number of times. We would often pray for Julie each time we drove past her shop. We would pray and we would speak life and favour over her.

One day Joel and I visited Julie’s shop again. Something had changed. Things were going well for Julie. She greeted us with excitement and told us her good news. Joel and I were very happy to hear this good news, but also because we knew we had a small part to play in this through our prayers.

When we pray, we can cooperate with the Holy Spirit for the influence of Heaven on earth. God wants us to have faith that He hears us when we pray, and that Heaven is on the move to influence, change and rearrange things to bring about the desired result. 

So don’t be discouraged when it doesn’t appear that things are changing. A great deal of movement may be underway that you can’t see! Your part is to pray and to speak to the contrary situations of life, and be confident that when you are weak and in a battle, someone is praying for you! 

After we have spoken God’s Word, and after we have prayed, we don’t need to stand around scrutinising our view of things, looking for signs that something has changed. Jesus walked away after He spoke to the fig tree—He just got on with life. Yet for the disciples, there was no external evidence that anything had changed at all. But it had! The Bible tells us that: “immediately the fig tree withered”. So why were the disciples so surprised the next day when they passed the tree again? It was because change began in an unseen place—the roots! The tree began to “wither from the roots”. In other words, change had begun immediately, but it just wasn’t visible YET! (Mark 11:12,20).

Isn’t that what faith is: “the evidence of things not seen” (Hebrews 11:1). So when you pray, and when you speak God’s Word, BELIEVE.

Continue to thank God that He has heard your prayers and petitions. Continue to speak, decree and declare the Word of God over every situation that is contrary to His promises! Pray for one another! When we trust in Him, things have a way of working out for the best.

So we are convinced that every detail of our lives is continually woven together to fit into God’s perfect plan of bringing good into our lives, for we are his lovers who have been called to fulfil his designed purpose.

Romans 8:28 (TPT)

Who then is left to condemn us? Certainly not Jesus, the Anointed One! For he gave his life for us, and even more than that, he has conquered death and is now risen, exalted, and enthroned by God at his right hand. So how could he possibly condemn us since he is continually praying for our triumph? 

Romans 8:34 (TPT)

Tracey Pekkanen

© Copyright. Wired for Word Ministries. Unauthorised use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from the author and/or owner, is strictly prohibited. Permission is given to use excerpts and links, provided that full and clear credit is given to Wired for Word Ministries.

Observe the Light

When the storms of life come—and they come to all—it is faith in God’s eternal goodness and His promises that makes the light break through in the darkness.

Tracey Pekkanen

When the path you tread withholds the light
When you cannot see—as if t’was night
Then take faith’s step, not born of sight
And make the darkness flee!

Though shadows loom and seek to scare
Upon the path where feet do dare
Hold tight the flame and take no care
And make the darkness flee!

Slip not your foot, nor slacken pace
Fear not the trial nor battle’s haste
Stand in the light of Truth’s embrace
And make the darkness flee!

Lift up your voice—let truth be heard
And angels hearken to His Word
The light shall pierce, and change shall stir
And make the darkness flee!

Observe the light—it cannot dim
No darkness can diminish Him
His light will see you to the win
And make the darkness flee!

By Tracey Pekkanen

© Copyright. Wired for Word Ministries. Unauthorised use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from the author and/or owner, is strictly prohibited. Permission is given to use excerpts and links, provided that full and clear credit is given to Wired for Word Ministries.

The Reflection

The words to this poem began over 20 years ago. I was living and studying abroad at the time. They flowed as if from God’s heart directly to mine. I hope it speaks to you as it has often spoken to me.

Tracey Pekkanen

To whom do you compare yourself?
Do you think it is unwise?
By what standard do you measure?
Looking through imperfect eyes

On each is My Designer’s mark
Stamped “Fearfully and Wonderfully Made”
Each a masterpiece of art
For which a great price has been paid

As I’ve purposed, I’ve created
Never two to be the same
And it was I from earth’s foundation
Who has called you by your name!

So for a glimpse—a longing stare
At who you’re meant to be
Gaze at the mirror of My Word
And your reflection you will see

Don’t walk away and then forget
The image you behold
Keep fixed on it—hold tight to it
And a changing will unfold

Yes, a changing to a likeness
That is far beyond compare
To any earthly image
That once did hold your stare

By Tracey Pekkanen

© Copyright. Wired for Word Ministries. Unauthorised use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from the author and/or owner, is strictly prohibited. Permission is given to use excerpts and links, provided that full and clear credit is given to Wired for Word Ministries.

Motherhood

I wrote this poem for Mothers’ Day 2019. It was given to every woman who walked through our church doors that Sunday morning (whether or not anyone had ever call them “mother”)–because I believe that motherhood instinctively beats in the heart of every woman.

Tracey Pekkanen

Thank you for the things you do
For being who you are
Thank you for the love you share
Up close and from afar

For all the times you gave yourself
‘til you could give no more
Then from a quiet place of strength
Kept giving o’er and o’er

You lead in ways unnoticed
You gently shape the day
You humbly do for others
And there is grace in what you say

You inspire and empower
You show courage in the storm
You bring hope where it is needed
And you make your house a home

You’re a daughter
You’re a sister
You’re an aunty and a friend
You’re a teacher
You’re a mother
And your patience knows no end

Of all the things you are to us
Of this you can be sure
That by God’s Grace and Power
You are more, yes so much more!

By Tracey Pekkanen

© Copyright. Wired for Word Ministries. Unauthorised use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from the author and/or owner, is strictly prohibited. Permission is given to use excerpts and links, provided that full and clear credit is given to Wired for Word Ministries.

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