Tuesday, November 17, 2015


Today I took out a little time to Shabbat.  I took a break.  I stopped what I was doing so I could just breathe.  I took out some time and just spent my Shabbat with God.  I talked to Him.  I listened.  And the most amazing thing happened; He talked to me.

To Shabbat means that we cease 
We stop.  We resist the urge to continue.  Shabbat means that we just basically stop all activity and get quiet.  Face it, we have become so busy in our everyday lives that we neglect to stop for one moment in time to just be quiet and listen to God.

 Step out of the traffic! Take a long, loving look at me, your High God, above politics, above everything. ~Psalm 46:10, The Massage

Some people say God doesn’t speak to people anymore.  That’s a lie.  He does.  People don’t hear God anymore because people don’t Shabbat.  Not long ago I attended a ladies event called “Breathe Night.”  It was a time for us to get together and just…well…breathe.  To take some time off, relax, visit.  

One of the things laid out for us at this event were coloring pages.  Now, anyone who knows me knows that I love to color.  But I don’t color like most people color.  I go outside the lines.  On purpose.  Coloring gives me a time to relax.  It lets me breathe.  It allows me to let go of inhibitions and just be me.  Coloring lets me Shabbat.

Don’t fret or worry.  Instead of worrying, pray. Let petitions and praises shape your worries into prayers, letting God know your concerns. ~Philippians 4:6, The Message 

When I color, my mind shifts into neutral.  When I’m in neutral I begin to hear that still, small, but wonderful voice that ministers to my soul.  I hear Him.  I listen.  I breathe.  There are all kinds of coloring books for adults out there today.  But hey, you don’t have to go buy an adult coloring book.  If you have kids, use one of theirs.  Many times I’ve colored Thomas the Train, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, princesses, cartoon characters, it doesn’t matter.  It’s not about what you color.  It’s about Shabbat.

Stop.  Cease.  Resist the urge to continue.
Shabbat isn’t about coloring, either.  Shabbat is about stopping in your tracks and spending some quiet time with the Lord.  In whatever way that ministers to you the most, do it.  It’s about taking a break.  Take some time out today.  Read your Bible.  Listen.  Watch the leaves fall from the trees.  Color.  Cuddle up in your cozy place and just get quiet.  God will meet you wherever you are.  If you give Him a moment of your time, He will come and talk to you.

Call to me and I will answer you.  I’ll tell you marvelous and wondrous things that you could never figure out on your own. ~Jeremiah 33:3, The Message

The enemy wants to speed you up.  Don’t let him.  Instead, Shabbat.  When you do, I guarantee that you won’t regret it.  Give yourself time to relax, adjust, unwind, to just stop and enjoy this beautiful life God has given you.

Shabbat!  You just might learn something.

Tuesday, November 10, 2015

What's It All About?

What’s Your Book About?

When people ask me what my book is about, I often go blank.  Not because I don’t remember, but because I find it difficult to fully explain exactly what’s in it.  It’s complicated.  Yet, it’s so simple that I make it complicated.

“What’s your book about?”
“Um… healing.  It’s about my journey after being healed of over forty years of depression, intimidation, and mental and emotional abuse.”

They usually back up, a look of ‘oh great, she’s a wacko’ on their face.  Seriously, it is about the healing but it’s about so much more than that.

It’s About So Much More Than Healing

Walking Healed is about God wanting to work in the lives of His people.  Yes, it’s an account of my journey.  However, there’s not much about me in the book.  I try to convey different thoughts throughout the book that connect to my healing but also give the reader an insight into how God wants to do this in their lives.

This book is written for those who are dealing with depression, intimidation, verbal abuse, addictions, or whatever else they may be going through that prevents them from living the abundant life that Jesus died so we can have.  That’s what it’s about.  It’s also for those who, in their minds think they’re being helpful when in reality they’re causing more hurt than help.

I was approached by a man not long after the launch of Walking Healed.  He had been talking to my husband then looked pointedly at me and said, “Actually, I really wanted to see you.  I have something to say to you.”

At this point, I wasn’t sure what he wanted to say to me, but after he finished talking with my husband he turned to me, “I read your book.”  His eyes became misty, but he continued anyway.  “I thought I was buying it for someone else.  Turns out, I was buying it for me.  Because of what you wrote, I was able to salvage a relationship.  So thank you.  And I’m going to give you a big hug.”

It’s moments like this that I realize God is doing a vast miracle in the lives of those who read this book.  It’s not about me at all.  It’s about what God did in and through me and what He’s doing in those who are reading.  Without Him, there would be no healing.  There would be no book.  There would be no one else’s life being changed.

It’s A Journey

Walking Healed is a journey.  It’s my journey after being healed.  In the book I do talk about different things I have gone through, that many other people may be going through.  I had to become very transparent and talk about some things that were not pleasant for me.  In no way did I degrade anyone, but I did talk about the verbal abuse that I suffered from many family members, teachers, peers, and others.  It had to be said.  No names were mentioned so really no one knows to whom I was referring.

Life is real.  Life is hard.  We often go through things that cause us hurt and distress.  We suffer.  It’s a given.  This world is not our home.  It may sound cliché but it’s the truth.  This is why I call this a journey.  If becoming transparent enough to share what I’ve been through and how God helped me out of it helps someone else, then I’m glad I did it.  And I would do it again, and again, and again.

Keep Telling Your Story

There are also people who don’t want to hear my story.  That’s okay.  Some wish I would stop talking about it.  To that I can only say, keep wishing.  It’s not going to happen.  A very wise and Godly man once told me, “Don’t ever stop talking about your healing.  Your story needs to be heard because it gives encouragement to others who need to hear what you went through.  So keep telling it.”  I take his advice as much as I can.

People are going to get mad because, “she’s talking about her healing again.”  Yes I am! Because, not everyone has heard it.  If you happen to be standing close enough to overhear me start telling it again and don’t want to hear it, just walk away.  The person I’m telling it to may just need some encouragement, to hear how God wants to touch their life. 

Special Book Offer

If you haven’t read Walking Healed and would like to, I’m offering an electronic copy* of it to anyone who responds to this post.  I’m also offering a signed paperback copy to the first five people who email me at shelley@shelleywilburn.org.  The holidays are fast approaching.  Walking Healed would make a great gift.

Wouldn’t you like to walk healed in the New Year, or see someone you love walk healed?  The book doesn’t heal.  But the God who healed me so I could write the book does. 

*If you choose an electronic version please indicate which format you prefer; Kindle, Nook, or PDF

Wednesday, October 21, 2015

Rolling From the Apple Tree

The apple doesn’t fall far from the tree!

According to Wictionary.org the meaning of that is, “A child grows up to be similar to its parents, both in behavior and in physical characteristics.”

This statement can be meant to be positive or negative.  Sometimes people say it in reference to a baby resembling one or the other parent, which is a nice compliment.  Other times, people say it as an insult to hurt someone. 

For the apple to stay close to the tree would mean it continues to stay in the same path as the tree.  It looks like where it came from, tastes like where it came from and can easily be identified because it hasn’t fallen far from the tree.

The apple here is a metaphor for people.  If we stick close to those around us before long we begin to act and sound just like them, thereby making, “The apple doesn’t fall far from the tree” a very true statement.

Hurtful words cause us to hurt others.  If we are treated badly, we’ll treat others badly.  If we are talked to negatively, we’ll talk to others negatively.  We become a bruised, sour apple and we make more bruised, sour apples in the people we come in contact with.

Sure, we make mistakes.  However, if we follow in the footsteps of Jesus, we begin to act and sound just like Him.  If we read His Word and follow His teachings, we will become more like Him.  Let Jesus into your life.  Listen to His Words.  He can take the bruised apple and make it smooth.  He can take the sour apple and make it sweet. 

“A word fitly spoken is like apples of gold in settings of silver.” ~Proverbs 25:11 (NKJV)

Very often the negative people in our lives try to keep us banged up and bruised in order to keep themselves from facing the truth of their own lives.  But you can change your life.  By following Jesus, you can have a new life.  Sweeter.  Different.  Better.

Yes, I fell from the tree.  Bumped, bruised, and battered, I rolled.  My roots tried to roll me back time and time again, always attempting to engage me in things I once said and did.  Many times, defeated I rolled back, more bruised, more battered.  I would go back into more hurt, more depression, more hopelessness.

One time though, I didn’t roll back.  One time I rolled all the way down the hill, away from the roots, and let Jesus smooth me out, and sweeten me up.  Trust me, once you roll down the hill, away from the tree, you can’t roll back up the hill again and you won’t want to.

Don’t misunderstand, people will remember your past, but it doesn’t have to affect you negatively.  Once Jesus heals you and smooths you out, you’re not the same person anymore and no one can hold you to your past unless you let them.  Instead, choose to be a new, sweeter apple.

The next time you hear, “The apple doesn’t fall far from the tree,” you’ll know that it does if it rolls down the hill and away from the bitter roots.

“For thus says the Lord of hosts: “He sent Me after glory, to the nations which plunder you; for he who touches you touches the apple of His eye.” ~ Zechariah 2:8 (NKJV)

You are the apple of His eye.  Nothing or no one can change that.  You are chosen, hand-picked by God, and you are loved.

Tuesday, October 13, 2015

You're Right Where You Are

“If you ain’t where you are, you’re no place.” ~Col. Sherman Potter, M.A.S.H. 4077

Sitting in a little bakery at a lunch meeting one afternoon, I listened as the young lady I was meeting with said, “God has me right where He wants me.”  I smiled.  I felt proud for her because she was so confident that she knew and I was happy for her.  Then I smiled more because at that moment, I knew that He has me right where He wants me too and for once in my life I knew it.  How ironic.

How do we know that we are right where God wants us?  How do we know that what we’re doing is in His will for our lives?  Many people have asked me this.  First of all, don’t trust your feelings.  Feelings are fickle.  They change like the wind.  Don’t trust your circumstances, either.  Because without warning those can also change.

So how do we really know that we are in the will of God?  Faith.  Trust.  We have to ask God to show us in ways we can understand, then follow His leading, His prompting, and just go with it, even if it seems weird.

If you want to fit in, be where God puts you.

God doesn’t always do things by the book.  Meaning, God doesn’t do things the way society dictates.  On the contrary, He does things His way, by His book, which means that quite often it’s over the top, out of our comfort zone, seemingly impossible, and the most outrageous thing you’ve ever thought of. 

“The LORD says, “I will guide you along the best pathway for your life. I will advise you and watch over you.”  ~Psalm 32:8, NLT

Everyone is looking for where they fit in.  Everyone wants to fit in somewhere.  And everyone does fit in.  God has a place for each and every one of us.  It’s a one-size-fits-all and it’s a custom fit for everyone.  It’s just your size.  Where you fit in is tailor made just for you.  It’s already waiting for you.  You don’t have to be fitted for it.  God already took care of that.  All you have to do is show up and step into it.  Go ahead. Try it on!  You’re right where you are for a reason. No matter where you are, if you’re where God wants you, you’re definitely someplace.

Monday, September 28, 2015

You Mean I Have to Forgive?!

No, you don’t have to.  But you’ll want to when you know that in order for God to forgive you, you’ll have to be forgiving.  Jesus said so.

But if you do not forgive men their trespasses, neither will your Father forgive your trespasses. ~Matthew 6:15 (NKJV)

God won’t forgive me if I don’t forgive others?  Nope.  How can He when you’re harboring such venom for others?  Oh, I don’t know what they did to you?  No, I don’t.  But you also don’t know what others have done to me, either.  Yet, here we are.

Two Parts

Forgiveness has two parts: 1) forgiveness for others; 2) forgiveness for you.  That may not be very easy for some.  We all go through things in life.  Some things are very difficult to accept.  Some things are beyond comprehension.  But what you need to understand about forgiveness is that regardless of what someone has done to you, forgiving them actually frees you.

It doesn’t mean that you allow that person back into your life to continue the abuse, the hurt, or whatever it is that they did.  Forgiving them doesn’t mean restoration of the relationship.  Forgiving them means that you reconcile to the fact that you forgive them for what they did and you each move on.  That relationship can never be what it once was.  And sometimes it’s better to go separate ways.  Be cordial to one another, but stay at a distance.

Not Off the Hook

Forgiveness also doesn’t mean that you’re letting that person off the hook.  It means that you are willing to let it go into the hands of God and allow Him to take care of the repercussions.

Now, once you forgive your offender, abuser, or whoever they are, you do not get to go back to that offense later down the road however many years and drag it back up, drag them through the mud with it, and accuse them once again.  Not even if they make you mad about something else.

The same is true with you.  Let’s face it, we make mistakes.  We mess up.  I do daily.  And through the years I’ve made some pretty bad mistakes and hurt many different people.  But the beautiful thing about that is, when God healed me I learned to forgive myself.  Yes, I apologized to those I hurt.  Some forgave me, some didn’t.  But I learned to forgive myself and move on.  Yes, I tried to hold onto my own hurt over some things I had done, because a few people chose to hold onto it and try to hold it over my head.  But once I realized that I had apologized not only to them, but to God, it was done.  Over.

What about those who won’t forgive?  What about things I didn’t do that I’m being accused of?  Here’s a little secret; you can’t worry about that.  Give it to the Lord and then leave it alone.  And the biggest thing you can do is to pray for those who are unforgiving.

Take Responsibility

Unforgiving people are very unhappy people.  Rather than take responsibility for their actions, it’s easier for them to blame someone else.  I know.  I’ve been that person.  And it hurts you worse when you do that than it does to admit you made a mistake and ask for forgiveness.

Forgiveness is healing.  It’s a huge release of stress, anxiety, evil thoughts and feelings, it’s very freeing.  Forgiveness releases others and it releases you.  Think of Jesus on the cross.  He had been lied about, lied to, spat upon, beaten, flogged, pierced, called names, ridiculed… There isn’t anything we go through today that He didn’t go through.  And as He was nailed to the cross then hanging there in excruciating pain, what did He do?  He forgave!  He cried out to God and said, “Father, forgive them.  For they know not what they do.”

He forgave!  While dying an innocent, Jesus chose to forgive.  Now… some relationships with Him would never be reconciled or restored.  And that is the most tragic. 

Stop Beating Yourself Up!

There is so much to be said about forgiveness.  By forgiving others you are simply saying, “I’m not allowing this to happen anymore.  I forgive you.”  Then go your way.  Forgiving yourself you just decide to stop beating yourself up for your past mistakes and move forward not repeating them.

One thing Jesus said to some that He forgave, “Go, and sin no more.”  Just don’t repeat it.  Learn from it and move on.  Forgiveness may not be easy, but it’s necessary.

Need a little help?  Ask the Lord.  Let Him teach you how.  He’s really good at it.

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