The Ironies of the Cross

Streams in the desert

Our God works in mysterious ways. He reminds us of this in the book of Isaiah, that His ways are not our ways, nor are His thoughts our thoughts.  The bible is a book stacked with irony and full of mystery.  The first irony I want to look at today is of the cross.

It is where we see evil intention being transformed into divine salvation.

God interrupted the evil schemes of man and Satan when He resurrected Christ from the dead. For we read in the book of Acts that death could not hold Him.  God, in His divine justice, overruled all wicked intentions and used their very acts of disobedience to bring life and salvation to the entire world, for anyone who would receive.

The second irony we see is that resurrection comes THROUGH crucifixion. The cross represents death, pain and suffering.  It is out of this death that LIFE appears.  To personalize this truth, we realize that our own death to self must occur so that we can encounter HIS glorious life and vanquish all evil in our being.  Jesus so eloquently tells us in the book of John, “I tell you the truth, unless a kernel of wheat is planted in the soil and dies, it remains alone. But its death will produce many new kernels–a plentiful harvest of new lives. Those who love their life in this world will lose it. Those who care nothing for their life in this world will keep it for eternity.  Anyone who wants to be my disciple must follow me, because my servants must be where I am. And the Father will honor anyone who serves me.” John 12:24-26 NLT

Inside of Jesus’ words is the startling truth that if we desire to save our life we will lose it. However, when we choose to lose our life for His sake, we are then able to find true life- This is good news!

It is on the cross that Jesus once and for all defeated Satan. Paul reminds us in Colossians that we have been made alive with Christ, the anointed One, because He disarmed the powers and authorities and triumphed over them all by the cross.  Col. 2:13-15

Again, we see that out of death, our enemy has been defeated and we can now enter into the abundant life that Jesus calls us to.

My friend, are you truly living today? Are you focusing on the goodness of God despite your current situations?  If not, I want to encourage you to enter into the fullness of God’s goodness.  God will sometimes confront us with deep pain and suffering because He desires to reveal His goodness to us.    We experience the goodness of God only through the revelation of His glory, which is His unique nature and essence.   God displays Himself as supremely good in the midst of the most intense evil and suffering experienced on this earth – the cross of Calvary.

I have a quote hanging in my office that reads, “If I don’t see the cross and what Jesus did for me, then I can NEVER be truly free.”

God has overturned all human pain because He experienced it for us. He displayed His goodness by suffering on our behalf.

And so I leave you with this…..Make pain your friend! Cause any and all pain in your life to catapult you into the arms of a loving Father who created you and has a divine purpose for you here on this earth and for all eternity.  Memorize Jeremiah 29:11 and meditate on its truths and goodness.  Allow pain to bring you to a place of complete dependence on the One who formed you in your mother’s womb (Psalm 139)

Whatever you do, don’t try and escape from your pain, but be with it. Because the attempt to escape from pain only creates more pain.” – Asian Proverb

It is through our pain and suffering that we experience lasting joy and encounter His beautiful glory.  Romans 8:17

http://www.powerofhislove.com

L. Roitsch 5/2017

The Small Things Matter

roitsch-6

Most couples we mentor and counsel, fail to recognize that sometimes even the smallest, and seemingly insignificant things can make a HUGE difference in building a healthy, happy marriage.

Hopefully, every marriage wants their goal to be intimacy.  Staying connected to your spouse can be challenging, but powerful when it is done with focus and intentionality.

Here are a list of powerful, yet small activities, you can engage in to keep your passion burning and the love flowing:

  • Tell your spouse “Thank you” more often.
  • Greet them at the door when they arrive home from a long day – show excitement that they are home!
  • Leave them a hand written love note somewhere they don’t expect it.
  • Every day tell your spouse one thing you appreciate about them.
  • Send a passionate, steamy text message telling your spouse you can’t wait to see them again.
  • Make a list of why you fell in love with your spouse and keep it handy on those days when you need extra encouragement.
  • Say “I am sorry” and take full responsibility if something you said or did hurt your spouse. Owning our mistakes go a long way in building intimacy and trust.
  • Ask your spouse to tell you one thing about themselves that you don’t know yet.
  • Hug your spouse MORE! Physical touch releases oxytocin which helps lower stress levels.

This list is not exhaustive, but rather intended to help you get your creative juices flowing. As you add some of these small gestures to your marriage daily, I promise it will produce tons of benefits.

One thing I learned early in our journey of recovering from sexual addiction and infidelity was to look my spouse in the eye and passionately state, “My goal with you today is connection. I want to do whatever it takes to build trust, intimacy and passion into our marriage.”  As I faithfully voiced my intentions, it gave my spouse room to relax, enjoy the everyday moments of life and went a long, long way in restoring true passion and closeness back into our relationship.

A good marriage doesn’t just happen. It requires work, patience and lots of intentional moments, where your goal is to stay connected with one another no matter the cost.  Love is a choice….every day!

Our prayer is that you choose to love your spouse more, LIVE every day with focus and intention and experience God’s abundant peace and joy in your marriage and family!

God has more in store for you than you can even imagine! Ephesians 3:20

http://www.powerofhislove.com

 

 

 

Friends With Benefits

friendship

I always like to take the week between Christmas and New Year and contemplate all of the past year. For me, 2016 was packed full of surprises, pain, joy and tight pressure from situations that God used to shape me more into His image.  Sometimes restricting me to the point where I felt like I couldn’t breathe.  But God……

As I was sitting in my easy chair today, drinking my lukewarm coffee, I began to entertain the thought of how rich I have become. Now, before you think I am bragging, please understand that my fullness does not come from earthly possessions or material treasures.  Rather, my wealth is found in the abundance of amazing people that have chosen to walk through this season of life with me.  To be specific, my girlfriends.

So, I have decided to dedicate this blog to all the incredibly strong women in my life. Some I have only known for a few months and others, I have known for over 30 years.  Each of you are special, unique and my life would be poverty stricken without you in it.

When I ponder all my girlfriends, tears well up and begin to fall on my lap. I have always prayed and asked God to bring people into my life that He knows will be best for me and wow! has He answered that prayer a thousand-fold!

I think of my oldest friend who has recently moved away and I don’t get to see as much, but now I have a beautiful lake house to go enjoy the hill country with. And then there is my oldest homeschool, all girls family friend, who is like a blood sister in so many ways.  We can go months without speaking and then pick right back up where we last left.

I have some friends who have lived across from me or next to me and know things that no one else does – hee hee!   I pause to muse on one of my newest friends who I found through a “google” search and realized she lived only 25 minutes from my house – my life is so much richer!  I remember friends who have mentored me from afar through their books and writings and then become mentors in the faith for me close up.  Friends who have encouraged me, cheered me on, trusted me and loved me unconditionally.

There are so many friends whom I have raised my girls with, cried with, prayed with, and laughed with. Bold and beautiful….women who are leaders in their ministry, or work place and home.  Tall girlfriends, short ones, little and petite and the lovely curvy ones.  For me, each woman represents a special answer to my prayers.

Our marriages have not been perfect, and our kids certainly have not been. But these women have modeled and shown me how to be strong in weakness.  I think of all the scriptures we have memorized together over the years, all the bible studies we have done, and the long telephone conversations asking each other questions and sometimes never arriving at an answer.

{Big Sigh} Would you like to take the time to sit back with me and name all the wonderfully, imperfect people in your life? You may be surprised and end up embracing a new level of hope and joy, as I have.

I pray you have a friend who will bail you out of jail when there was a big misunderstanding over a check you wrote, or a friend who will drive for hours in the night just to see you.  I pray you have a friend who will allow you the luxury of staying at her house when you needed a fun place to stay instead of paying for a hotel.  Or perhaps you need a friend who knows just the right cheesy card to send you when you are having a bad day.

Bravo, bravo to all the wives who I have sobbed with and counseled to keep loving their marriage, their spouse and their family. Sometimes, the world tells you to “just throw in the towel”….but that was NEVER an option for you!   Thank You!  For I have become a better person because YOU didn’t quit!

Here, here to girlfriends! Homage to all the women who refuse to give up!  Who don’t back down and love a good challenge.  Blessings to all the fearless ladies who have raised children, kept their marriages, sometimes with passion and sometimes with pain, cooked countless meals, cleaned up poop and throw up and then rescued the neighborhood’s stray animal.  To all the women and ladies who have ministered to the homeless, counted out their last change to give away, and who stood and believed when you were not able….

WELL DONE! You are a good and faithful servant and friend!

I love to read Oswald Chambers, My Upmost for His Highest. At the beginning of every year, I read the first post, January 1.  At the close of his writing, Oswald states, “When we think seriously about what it will cost others if we obey the call of Jesus, we tell God He doesn’t know what our obedience will mean. Keep to the point— He does know. Shut out every other thought and keep yourself before God in this one thing only— my utmost for His highest. I am determined to be absolutely and entirely for Him and Him alone.”

I am so blessed to be surrounded by women who have determined to keep themselves entirely for HIM! For Christ alone. I have not done this perfectly, and neither have they, but I sure am grateful that we know the One who did!

To all the faithful ones, the forgiven, the saints……thank you Robin, Nicole, Tina, Michelle, Charlotte, DeeAnn, Maggie, Kathi, Gloria, Susan, Gail, Carolyn, Angela, Kim, Toni, LeeAnn, Diana, Victoria, Jean, Monica, Jodi, Ghia, Melissa, Billie, Amanda, Gigi, Tiffani, Ronnie, Adryanna, Shannon, Vanessa, Laura, and of course, Carissa, Loryn and Kaleigh Ann, my 3 “grown up” angels.  #bebrave

http://www.lisaroitsch.com

 

 

The Son Has Risen

dawn3

The Son

Any freedom I walk in is because of God’s grace.

It is not anything I have done except lean into Him and make Him my life….my essence!

The letter of the law nearly strangled me to death; my paltry obedience was never enough.

I was suffocating under its weight.

I was broken beyond repair……except for the CROSS!

He stepped down from the glory and came to save me; He left to come and find me.

He became my darkness; He took what was mine and gave me His.

He is my morning! He is my new beginning; He is my dawn.

And now I share in the brightness of His love and His power has reached me.

No longer forsaken, but received.

No longer a beggar, but a daughter.

It is out of my brokenness that He comes and shines through.

And now He says that I am altogether lovely

No stain or blemish found within.

I am forgiven. I am cleansed.  His mercies are new.

They have kissed with truth – righteous has sprung forth.

Good morning beautiful you, you are worth waking for!

 

A song of thanksgiving to my Beloved- L. Roitsch

Mighty Waters

waters

The victory belongs to the Lord. Everything belongs to Him and He has already won.  Psalm 24:1

Since the election, I have felt very strong in my spirit that it is imperative that God’s people “rush forward” and NOT SHRINK BACK!

As we are aware of all the riots and disenchanted voices everywhere, there needs to be ONE voice, a united voice, speaking out into the spiritual realm, across our land. And that voice is the voice of the bride of Christ.  I believe NOW, more than ever, the body of Christ needs to use its voice to speak out the heart of God.

Over the past 7-8 days, I have felt compelled to constantly be in prayer all day. We know that the scripture admonishes us to pray without ceasing and this is what I am referring to.  Whatever I am doing, whether standing and cooking, sitting or driving my car, I feel a voice rising up within me to proclaim God’s goodness, favor, mercy and power wherever I go.  I sense it is not my own voice, but the voice of God’s spirit within me as a believer, that is wanting to be released.

It is like a bursting fountain of water that I cannot stop. I don’t even need to think about it, it just constantly flows out of my mouth.  Thankfulness begins to bubble up inside of me and pour out moment by moment.

As I have been hearing about the riots and protests everywhere, I am reminded of the passage of scripture in Revelation 12:15 where the dragon opens his mouth and spews forth water in order to drown “the woman” who gave birth to the child. This is what I see, in type, that the enemy of God’s people, is angry and is spewing forth his spirits of hatred, violence, murder, and dissention upon our land.  A flood of waters has been poured out in order to drown out the power and voice of God’s people. Can you see the violent flood moving forth to keep everyone in fear and pushed down to the ground?  Rushing water has the power to carry away everything in its path to complete destruction.

It is now time for the body of Christ, to rise up, shake off all complacency, apathy and offense and take her rightful place as a true heir of God’s Kingdom. As people of God we have the ability to set the tone and change the atmosphere with our love and declarations.  Because of Jesus’ precious blood, we have been given power and authority on this earth for good.

I encourage everyone to be filled with Christ’s beautiful spirit, to walk circumspectly and soberly now more than ever. Take your place and declare forth God’s mercy, love and power where ever you go!  Refuse every spirit of offense that comes your way and refuse to be caught up in disagreements and paltry words.

Life and death are in our tongue and each individual has the ability to shift realms and territories with their authority and voice. So use your mouth for good and righteousness!

I see the bride of Christ standing strong, united, and lifting up her voice in declaration of God’s love and power! We can choose to look at what is going on around us through the eyes of God, which is a heavenly perspective, or through a filter of hurt and fear, which is an earthly perspective.  We must set aside our petty differences and join arms with one another in love and unity.  When we do this, we will push back the enemy’s line and his plans and assignments will be defeated.

Take your territory Child of God! Walk, move, and run forward without fear.  For God did not give us a spirit of fear, but of love, power and a sound mind.  We have the mind of Christ.  Bind His thoughts to your mind and speak forth HIS declarations daily.

I firmly believe that if the body of Christ will activate this principle in every city and region across the nation, we can and WILL see a demise in the protests and angry mobs. And the waters of the evil one will be swallowed up (Revelation 12:16)

In the Power of His Love –

Lisa Roitsch

Lisa and her husband, Bill, believe in the power of God’s love to change and restore everything.  One of their greatest passions is to disciple marriages and see God’s plan for families be restored on this earth.  They have been married for over 27 years and have 3 grown daughters.

http://www.powerofhislove.com

http://www.lisaroitsch.com

 

Keep Running – Don’t Stop!

running-destiny

Have you ever had a passion to do something that seemed bigger than yourself? Maybe it was to start a new business venture, step out and create something that has never been seen, or travel to an unknown destination that you have only perceived in your dreams!

I had a vision today of myself running….full speed, wind blowing in my hair and with determination on my face. And when I turned to look beside me, guess who I saw?  My precious Lord Jesus.  He was running alongside of me with the biggest smile on His face.  His gait is longer than mine and He moves more swiftly, but He was cheering me on.  I could hear Him telling me not to stop!  With His hand on my back for support, I felt confident and sure of my destination.

My friend, Jesus is running alongside of you as well. Turn and see His beautiful face encouraging you!

This past weekend I was able to participate in something I had been dreaming about for over 13 years. Sometimes our dreams and passions are bigger than we think we can hold or accomplish, but I have learned that those are the dreams that come from heaven.

I can hear Jesus saying, “Don’t give up! This is what I died for….. beloved one, for you to LIVE, really live!” I see Him breathing on each one of you as you are in the starting blocks, ready for the signal to start.  You have prepared, trained and prayed countless prayers and He has seen it ALL!  He wants you to know that NOTHING has been in vain.

Don’t give up – you are on the verge of a breakthrough!

The enemy of your soul is breathing hot on your back, but don’t let it intimidate you. Holy angels are surrounding you and fighting on your behalf.  I can see them…clouds of angelic hosts sent to surround you, comfort you and strengthen you.  Ask the Father for eyes to see where they are strategically stationed to minister to you.  Like water stations along the marathon route, the Father has positioned His holy angles to give you what you have need of along the journey.

The Father is synchronizing heaven with earth in this season for you. Only believe that God has greatness in store for you.  In the days to come you will see His heavenly “time clock” line up and come in synch with what you are believing for.

Tear down the lies that whisper, “it’s impossible” or “you can’t do that.” They are dripping with darkness and hold no power over you.  Stand and watch the whirlwind that is coming to blow fresh breath on your back and catapult you into the fullness of your destiny.  It is not too late, it is not impossible.  I hear the Father say that NOTHING can stop His plans for you.

No weapon formed against you will prosper!

Run my friend…run like the wind! The Father is smiling down on you, Jesus is running beside you.  You are NOT ALONE!  Tell the lies to stop!  The things you have dreamed have been birthed and conceived in love from the portals of heaven and downloaded into your spirit man.  Pull them out of yourself and watch the beauty of all you have dared to believe come forth.

Prophecy to yourself! Contend, contend, and contend MOE!  Never give up!

“Yes, Be bold and strong!  Banish fear and doubt! 

For remember, I am with you wherever you go.” 

Joshua 1:9 TLB

In the Power of His Love – Lisa

http://www.lisaroitsch.com

 

Stolen!

mirror

“YOU TOOK AWAY MY WORTH!”

The headlines screamed at me and caused me to slow down and do “a double take.” I am sure most of us have heard or read about the story of the sexual assault of the unconscious young lady by a Stanford student.  The story has caused outrage and division among people as to what is fair and right punishment.  What I find so disturbing from this entire event is the fact that the young lady who was assaulted now believes she has no worth….no value…no voice.

The demeaning assault made against her has formed a dark shroud of shame over her.   “Emily Doe” has now become intimately acquainted with dishonor, humiliation and mortification.  And by her own words, she emphatically states, “the damage is done, and no one can undo it.”

This saddens me because I know so many believe that shameful experiences have the power to define who we are as a person.   For sure, traumatic events come into our lives uninvited and they can be devastating, but there is something we can do with them.  There is someone who can “undo it.” Those harrowing and painful things done to us CAN be remedied.

Shameful events can and do happen to all of us – some are mild like bullying or name-calling, but others are deeply distressing and crippling. There are forces of darkness that want us to believe that we are the only ones who suffer with these issues and that it is unchangeable. This is simply not true.

Too often our sin and emotional baggage gets linked to what we believe about ourselves. In other words, our personality and identity becomes associated with the things we struggle with.

The strategy of the enemy is for us to believe that we actually “are” how we feel or behave, which is not true at all. Satan wants you to believe things like: you “are” depressed, unhappy, worthless, unable to change, stupid, a failure…the list could go on and on. It is important to realize that our feelings and behavior are situational and we can change them. The truth is feelings and behavior are not who we really are. They might be things that we struggle with, but they are not our identity, or who we are in Christ.

This includes the things that you may think about yourself at a deep level. You might not consciously recognize them, but you find yourself thinking them or saying them about yourself on a regular basis.

I have counseled and ministered to many young girls and women who have been sexually abused, trafficked and molested. All of them come away with a sense that their inward self is fatally flawed and that something is intrinsically wrong with them. I heard repeatedly the fact that they believed they were damaged or defective on many levels within themselves.  I remember one sweet teenage girl had literally carved in her leg the words, “I deserve to die.”  Her belief that she was deeply flawed led her to the conclusion that death was the only escape from her torment.  I am happy to report that this same girl is now a young woman who is living a life of peace, and joy because she has finally found her true value in the eyes of God.  The intense belief of shame can be consuming and excruciating because there seems to be no hope in reversing its condition.  In my humble opinion, it is the worst feeling ever experienced by mankind.

When someone is walking in deep shame, it becomes a wall that separates them from others. The very people whom you desire a connection with are the ones that are blocked access into your true self.  I believe shame is a tool forged by the hand of our greatest adversary, Satan.  With it, he wields blows against our self-worth and knocks us down to levels that are near impossible to rise up again.  Shame then becomes a barrier that has the power to prevent us from experiencing the love and destiny that God has designed for us as individuals.

All the modern therapy of the day will not be able to permeate the layers of shame and reach ones core identity unless they turn to the One who created them. It is what we do with the events themselves, that determines if and how we can overcome them.  When you allow yourself to be fully known by the God who created you, you can be fully loved.  And isn’t that what all of mankind desperately craves – to be loved?!?

As we understand that at the very core of our shame, we have lost our dignity, we can begin to ask our heavenly Father to reassemble the pieces of our identity. Our true self can resurface and restoration is possible.  All the fragmented pieces of our soul are able to be re-assembled back together into wholeness. True restoration results from being molded by the Word within, rather than the world without.

I keep a piece of paper in my bible that has the following statements regarding my heavenly Father. This is what I am convinced of:

He restores my soul – Psalm 23

He heals my soul – Isaiah 61

He keeps my soul – Psalm 121

He knows and understand my soul – Psalm 139

He allows my soul to live – Psalm 119:175

He will not allow my soul to be destroyed – Psalm 16:10

He converts and changes my soul – Psalm 19:7

Once we understand who God is and we see His character and nature, we can begin to see who we are. God does not change and He is not a liar.  What He has promised, He will accomplish.  When we realize that our lives have the ability to be wrapped up in the bundle of HIS life, we can walk out of shame and recapture our dignity.

I think we can all see our world is struggling with a severe case of identity crisis. There is so much confusion.  Am I a woman?  Or a man?  Children are questioning which bathroom to use in school and the very fabric of our society is becoming frayed.  Our culture, perhaps parents, or friends, tell us who we are based on our actions. “I drink excessively, therefore, I am an alcoholic.  I have killed therefore, I am a murderer.”  Or maybe words spoken over you “You will never amount to anything.” You are good for nothing, I wish you had not been born.”

Our thinking has been shaped by our environment, the world systems, and the art, music, and literature around us. Some of us have received more identity from the world, flesh and devil than we have from the kingdom of God.

Religion calls us a sinner – God calls us a saint. Our parents may have called us illegitimate but God says you are my son and my daughter.

What we desperately need is a lens change – a change of perspective

In the bible, knowledge is about experience. Not merely hearing something but, believing a truth to the point where it changes you and your behavior.  Our thoughts line up with God’s word and who HE says we are and we receive His truth as the final word.

When we come out of “this world” and into the Kingdom of God – we need to realize that the mindset of the Kingdom is counter culture to the things of this world – to the mind of Christ.  A Kingdom mindset thinks the opposite way of the world.

We are not capable of fully existing inside of God’s love and power until we fully understand who we are. The great news is, things in the past do not have to negatively affect our present or future.  I beg you dear reader, dive into God’s word.  Believe every word and allow His thoughts and plans to wash over you and cleanse your soul.

We need to “re-frame” our thinking into an alliance with Christ and what He says: the renewal of our thinking is the essence of transformation – Romans 12:2

Upgrading our identity in Jesus requires 3 things:

  1. Receiving God’s perspective of who you are IN HIM
  2. Adjusting our thinking in line with His thoughts over us
  3. (MOST IMPORTANT) Using the same language over ourselves that the Lord God does – so that our confession, declaration and proclamation expands our territory or inheritance in the Holy Spirit.

I have prayed countless times for the young victim named “Emily Doe.” I pray she realizes she doesn’t have to be a victim forever.  She has an opportunity to be an over-comer…an over-comer of shame, pain and loss.  I pray she realizes what the selfish young Stanford boy did to her doesn’t have to remain imprinted on her body and soul.  She can walk out and regain her dignity and self-worth.

Listen! Can you hear it?  There is One crying out…lift up your ears and hear the voice of Him who is calling out through the darkness of injury and agony…. “Come to me, all you who are weary and heavy burdened, and I will give you rest.”  Matthew 11:28

In the Power of His Love – Lisa