From The President’s Desk

FROM THE DESK OF

TERESA CITRO

FOUNDER & PRESIDENT OF THREAD OF HOPE, INC.

restoration-4

This morning I’m sharing the answer to a question I’ve been privately asked by countless people. Instead of copying my answer a thousand times, I’ll answer here:

Question:

How do you get to do the things you do with the kids? I want me and my family to do the same.

Answer:

I follow God in all He tells me to do.

You might say, “So do I, and I don’t get to do what you do?”

Well, did God tell you to give all your personal things away?  Did He tell you He wanted everything you owned to be given away-car, furniture, dishes, silverware, pots, clothes, jewelry, books, CDs, DVD’s, your house?  All your possessions gone?  Is He asking you to trust Him completely?  Did He tell you a list of things to do that might be innocent enough but no to you?  Did He call you to speak Truth at all costs even if you know what He is asking you to say will get you mocked and hated?

I wrote about this before.  My closest friends and spiritual leaders who have seen me go through it know this very well.  It was funny how I could give away all of my beautiful jewelry, custom made since I designed each piece with the jeweler. I could give my designer bags and the rest away.

Then God told me to give my books away.  I had a collection that meant a lot to me.  I had underlined and wrote on those books pages.  I remember calling one of my great friends and literally crying my eyes out not wanting to give up my books. Silly to many of you, I understand, but to me, it was the end of my personal me!  My kids, as young as they were, saw that!  They helped me load up the back of my SUV, as we drove those books between the library and goodwill. You know how many books I had?  We had built a library in our new home.  We made over 10 trips to deliver those books.  I prayed that whoever read my books God would show Himself to them so they would be blessed by what they read. I cried all the way to those places, as I felt a part of me was gone, my emotional, spiritual, and ideas and thoughts, I wrote in those books as reminders of who I was, how I thought, what I was expecting of God, and what I dreamed about. Yes, all those things, I wrote inside the pages of those thousands of books I read.  I read about 100 books a year. So, yes, thousands of books, I gave away.  But God told me too so I obeyed.  This was one of the hardest things I had to do.

There was a little book, I had in my office, at work, on my desk. It meant a lot to me. God said, “You did not do all I asked you to do?”  I knew exactly what He meant.  It was the book, a very godly book.  I had written personal information like the dates of my salvation and water baptism; this was a gift from my spiritual mentor.  I said, “God, I gave you all my books, please let me keep this one.  It’s so small.  Don’t make me give it back!”  His response was quick, and firm, “Give it back!”  I cried all the way to a family member of this person as she is now in Heaven.  The book had belonged to her, so I didn’t give it away, especially since God told me to give it to the family as it had family value. The person couldn’t believe I was giving it back. He told me, “Please my mom loved you as her own daughter.  Please keep it. That was worse because now I was hyperventilating and crying, but I explained he took it back said, “If you change your mind it will be here for you.”

One week later, a friend whom I had not seen in years sent me a box filled with books. She had no idea, I still have her note.  At the bottom of the box, there was this little book, the same exact book, I was holding on to for dear life.  She said, “I feel silly sending you this book so little you might not be able to read the words, but I was at the store and God told me to buy you this book and send to you.  I don’t know why this book.  If you don’t like it you can return it, or give it away!”  I called her, crying hysterically, unable to talk from crying so much to tell her how God used her to teach me so many lessons. The very book I had a hard time giving away, God gave it back to me. We both cried and prayed together, memories not forgotten, about radical obedience to do everything God says for us to do, even when we don’t want to do them.

So, then, if the point is not clear, let me make it crystal clear. We, my children and I, have made major life altering decisions.  We have chosen to serve God all the way, obeying him at all cost.  No compromises! Serving Him in every way possible. Unapologetically, we will not engage in any bad talk towards those who went out of their way to lie and make us look bad.  We don’t care what is said behind our backs.  Let the lies and bad mouthing continue. We are all about obeying God, keeping his commandments, and living out the Beatitudes. We serve an audience of only one God!

We stand in awe of God. The miracles He’s done for us are grandiose!  Too many to count. We stand in total awe of God.  There hasn’t been one thing He has said that hasn’t come to pass.  My privilege and honor, as a Godly mother, is to teach my children to obey God in all things, to follow Him at all costs, to love everyone especially those who hate them and say all sorts of evil against them, to go out of their way to do good, never hate, never be angry towards those who dislike and hate them, and never wish they were someone else because they do not know the heartache in the lives of other individuals.

Jealousy is destructive and God ranks it like murder.

There was a great price to pay to receive the blessings of God.  Abraham was told by God to leave his country, family, and go to a foreign land.  He obeyed and is known for his faith. He didn’t care who made fun of him, who believed him, or who did or who he didn’t explain to anyone. He followed God.  It’s simple to do the same thing as we keep our eyes on God!

God calls us to do different things.

All lives matter in this case.

We need to pick up our own cross and follow God wherever He leads.

For me and my house, this is our calling to showcase a life of obedience to God.  He replaced double for whatever was taken. He honors true obedience, not partial.  I have no idea where you are, but if you’re stuck, go fast and pray, read his word, and don’t stop until God answers you.  This is how you know you are in the will of God.  It’s no mystery the will of God.  If you are sincere and approach God with a contrite heart, He will show Himself strong on your behalf.

As for me, I’m in a great place emotionally, physically, and most importantly spiritually!

To my God, Lord and Savior I give all praise!

I pray you will be challenged by my answer so you can see, hear, and taste for yourselves how great is our God.  Amen?If you want to identify with my personal life and how I live then you must do whatever God requires of you. This means you don’t act Christian or whatever religion you are only on the day you worship, and if you’re a Christian then you cannot participate in things which are “questionable.”  You cannot have a foot in the church and a foot in the ways of the world. They are completely different worlds.  We, my children and I have chosen to serve the Lord as it is in scripture not by culture.

If you want to identify with my personal life and how I live then you must do whatever God requires of you. This means you don’t act Christian or whatever religion you are only on the day you worship, and if you’re a Christian then you cannot participate in things which are “questionable.”  You cannot have a foot in the church and a foot in the ways of the world. They are completely different worlds.  We, my children and I have chosen to serve the Lord as it is in scripture not by culture.

Living this way is difficult for sure, but God is with us.  What more could we want?

God will repay you for the years the locust has eaten. The great and small locust. That is our God. He makes it be paid back, both leaving nothing behind and double! Yes, God!

The threshing floors will be full of grain, And the vats will overflow with the new wine and oil.  Then I will make up to you for the years that the swarming locust has eaten…”  Joel 2:24-25

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