DANCING WITH THE CHILDREN

by Dr. MaryAnn Diorio

“Guard your heart above all else,
for it determines the course of your life.” ~ Proverbs 4: 23

MARYANN’S NOTE: At Holy Spirit’s direction, I wil be posting a few personal experience stories over the next few weeks. These experiences happened to me personally and reveal God’s supernatural presence and power in our lives. I trust that these stories will encourage you, inspire you, and reveal to you how much God loves you and is involved with your life as well.
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DANCING WITH THE CHILDREN
by MaryAnn Diorio, PhD

The church sanctuary filled with the sweet fragrance of Holy Spirit’s Presence.

As I raised my hands in worship and sang praises to the Father from the depths of my heart, I suddenly found myself transported in the spirit to another realm. I was standing in the throne room of Heaven, participating in a magnificent worship service. Millions of saints, with uplifted holy hands, sang in joyful praise and worship to the Father.

My eyes scanned their faces, radiant with love and adoration. All eyes faced forward and focused on the front of the room. Following their unified gaze, my eyes beheld a Brilliant Being Who sat on a magnificent throne at the far end of the huge space.

Abba Father.

My heart instantly knew.

And my heart instantly bowed.

His countenance glowed with intense pleasure at watching His children enjoy His presence. His lips held a smile that was beyond description in its beauty and its grace.

His demeanor was at once kingly yet common. Common in the sense of humble and unassuming.

I could not take my eyes off of Him.

Nor did I want to.

Lights of colors the likes of which I had never seen emanated from His Being. Sounds of frequencies the likes of which I had never heard emanated from His voice.

The music was festive. Lively.

And very Jewish.

My feet began to move in rhythm to its joyful sounds. All around me, my brothers and sisters in Christ began to dance before the Father, their faces beaming with the fun of the moment. Tambourines sounded; cymbals crashed; voices rose in glorious timbres and tones to praise the great and wonderful God of the Universe.

The joy in the hearts of the saints was palpable as they filled the atmosphere with their loud shouts of praise.

Suddenly, my eyes noticed movement on the Throne. To my great surprise and even greater delight, Abba Father got up from His throne, descended the long stairway leading up to it, and joined His children in the dance.

Cheers arose from the congregation as they watched Father join them in their dance.

My heart beat wildly. Tears flowed from my eyes. I was taken aback by His utter humility. He had become one of us. Indeed, I could tell that His enormous delight lay in that very act of becoming one of us.

My eyes remained glued to the Father, as did my heart. One at a time, He took the hands of His children and spun them around in circles of joy. Laughing. Singing.

Blessing.

No one was slighted. Everyone was touched by His loving hand.

And His loving heart.

As I watched, mesmerized by His love, He turned toward me.

My heart skipped a beat as He headed toward me.

Straight toward me.

All time stood still as His compassionate eyes penetrated my spirit with their infinite love. Now He stood before me, kind and expectant. Nodding slightly, he took both of my hands in His, and I felt the merging of His heart with mine.

In that instant, I was the only one in the large hall. Everyone else had disappeared into the background.

Abba Father had eyes only for me.

The next thing I knew, He was whirling me around the dance floor, as a Father does with His little girl at a wedding.

And, as a little girl dancing with her Papa at a wedding feels the delight of His acceptance, His approval, and His love, so did I.

Together we whirled around the dance floor, His strength carrying me, His eyes never leaving mine. They twinkled and sparkled and laughed. They danced in merriment and rejoiced in delight.

And, most of all, they loved me.

My heart joined my feet in being lifted off the ground.

I had the distinct impression that as Abba danced only with me, He was also dancing only with each of His children in that great hall. On a level I cannot explain, I knew that, in relating to Abba, everyone felt as though he or she were the only one in the entire sanctuary. That is the way of the Father.

There is something about the Father’s love that makes one feel that she alone is the apple of His eye.

For several beautiful moments, I was caught up in the ecstasy of that other-world experience. Then, slowly, and a bit sadly, I stepped back from the spirit realm and returned to the church sanctuary to rejoin my physical body.

But I returned a different person. I returned as one who had experienced the goodness of God in a profound way.

I returned as one who would henceforth know firsthand that I am deeply loved, totally accepted, and warmly approved by the Father.

Most of all, I returned as one who had caught a glimpse into the Father’s heart and would never again be the same.
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Copyright 2015-2017 by MaryAnn Diorio. All Rights Reserved.

This article first appeared in Book Fun Magazine, October 2015.

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Matters of the Heart is a weekly blog that deals with the deepest issues of the human heart, the issues we all face but sometimes don’t want to talk about. The heart is the programming center of our lives. What is programmed into our heart will affect every area of our lives. Learn how to discover what is in your heart and how to program your heart for success.

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Copyright 2000-2017 by Dr. MaryAnn Diorio. All Rights Reserved. This article may not be published or printed in any form whatsoever without the written permission of Dr. MaryAnn Diorio. You may contact her at drmaryann@maryanndiorio.com to request permission.

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How to Turn Your Test into Your Testimony

Pursuing Your Victory

“Guard your heart above all else, for it determines
the course of your life.” ~ Proverbs 4:23
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Like any good parent, our loving Heavenly Father wants His children to mature.  The process of maturity requires testing.

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A test is a measurement of your spiritual growth.  A test is not a punishment.  It is an opportunity to fulfill our call as followers of Yeshua to enforce God’s Kingdom on the earth.

When a test comes–as it surely will–our response to the test will determine whether or not we pass the test. If we respond in the Spirit, we will pass the test. If we respond in the flesh, we will fail the test.

In every test lies the seed of victory and the seed of failure.  What seed sprouts depends on how we respond to the test.  

Respond in such a way that your test will become your testimony of God’s power manifested in your life.

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How to Set Healthful Boundaries

“Guard your heart above all else, for it determines
the course of your life.” ~ Proverbs 4:23
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What is a boundary? A boundary is a line that defines where one thing ends and another begins. When it comes to the human heart, a boundary is anything that helps you to differentiate you from someone else.

Scenic view of a white fencing heading down a hill during autumn season.

A boundary tells what something is and what something is not.

God defines Himself by boundaries. He tells us that He is love (I John 4:16) and that He is not darkness (I John 1:5). God also tells us what He will allow (righteousness) and what He will not allow (sin).  

Boundaries are essential to emotional well-being. Many problems are related to the failure to establish boundaries. 

If you have not established your boundaries, take time to do so today.

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If you have any questions, you may contact me as follows:

Email: drmaryann@maryanndiorio.com
Snail Mail: PO Box 1185, Merchantville, NJ 08109
Tel. 856-488-3580
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Copyright 2015 by Dr. MaryAnn Diorio. All Rights Reserved. This article may not be published or printed in any form whatsoever without the written permission of Dr. MaryAnn Diorio. You may contact her at drmaryann@maryanndiorio.com to request permission.

Amazon.com Required Disclosure: MaryAnn Diorio is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to Amazon.com.

Dr. Diorio is a Certified Life Coach, a Certified Biblical Counselor, and a Certified Behavioral Consultant. She is also an award-winning, widely published author of fiction for children and adults. You may reach her at maryann@maryanndiorio.com or via one of her social media venues below:

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How to Eliminate Fear from Your Life

A Simple Technique

“Guard your heart above all else, for it determines
the course of your life.” ~ Proverbs 4:23
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Fear has its roots in a lie. The lie is that we cannot trust God.

God is Love, but fear does not trust Love because fear does not know Love. 

Businessman holding sledgehammer hitting 3d fear mottled concrete word on asphalt road with sky clouds background, overcoming fear concept.

File: #82560526 | Author: TSUNG-LIN WU

To eliminate fear from your life, get to know Love. Get to know God.  

The more you know God, the more you will trust Him.

The more you trust Him, the less fear you will experience in your life.

It’s as simple and profound as that.

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To help you know and love God, read my popular book, YOU WERE MADE FOR GREATNESS! To purchase, click on photo.You Were Made for Greatness

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If you found this post helpful, please pass it on to someone who can benefit from reading it. Thank you!

If you have any questions, you may contact me as follows:

Email: drmaryann@maryanndiorio.com
Snail Mail: PO Box 1185, Merchantville, NJ 08109
Tel. 856-488-3580
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Copyright 2015 by Dr. MaryAnn Diorio. All Rights Reserved. This article may not be published or printed in any form whatsoever without the written permission of Dr. MaryAnn Diorio. You may contact her at drmaryann@maryanndiorio.com to request permission.

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Amazon.com Required Disclosure: MaryAnn Diorio is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to Amazon.com.

Dr. Diorio is a Certified Life Coach, a Certified Biblical Counselor, and a Certified Behavioral Consultant. She is also an award-winning, widely published author of fiction for children and adults. You may reach her at maryann@maryanndiorio.com or via one of her social media venues below:

Website: www.maryanndiorio.com
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Stress-Busters for the Stressed-Out

Tips for Staying Calm in the Midst of the Storm

“Guard your heart above all else, for it determines
the course of your life.” ~ Proverbs 4:23
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You just got home from a rough day at work. Just as you walk in the door, your spouse screams at you for being late, your youngest child is crying because her cat ran away, and your cell phone starts ringing. The only one who seems happy to see you is your dog.

lightstock_99422_medium_maryann_Photo by Shaun Menary. Lightstock.com Photo ID: 99422

By this time, you want to turn around and leave for some remote, uninhabited island in the middle of the Pacific, taking only your dog with you. Only there, you conclude, can you be free from the stress that has you on the brink of a nervous breakdown.

Perhaps at no other time in history have human beings been so bombarded with such potentially stress-producing situations. Stress causes our brains to go on overload, our bodies to suffer, and our hearts to wither. But is there any way out of what seems like an endless treadmill of turmoil?

Yes, there is! As always, the way out is found in the Bible, God’s manual for man. God never intended for us to live in stress. In fact, God’s will is that we live in continual peace. But how, you ask, can I live in peace when, whichever way I turn, I’m bombarded with problems, conflicts, and tension?

Good question! You see, peace has nothing to do with our external circumstances. Peace, on the other hand, has everything to do with our internal circumstances. What do I mean by that? I mean the state or condition of the inner core of our being, also called our heart.

“Peace has nothing to do with our external circumstances. Peace has everything to do with our internal circumstances.”

Just think of the eye of a hurricane. While horrendous winds are raging all around it, the eye of a hurricane is quiet and peaceful. The same can be true of our hearts. In the midst of the worst kinds of crises, our hearts can be at perfect peace.

So how do we achieve this perfect peace on the inside? The Bible gives us the answer in Isaiah 26:3: “You (God) will keep him in perfect peace whose mind is stayed on You.” Perfect peace comes from keeping our minds focused on God. When we do, we draw wisdom and strength from Him to deal with whatever problem we are facing.

Using the word “stress” as an acronym, let’s take a look at some practical steps we can take to develop inner peace:

1. Stay (fix) your mind on God. Keep Him continually in the center of your thoughts. You do this by talking with Him frequently during the day, by reading the Bible, and by praying.

2. Trust God. He is absolutely trustworthy and will never let you down.

3. Refuse to worry. Worry will always rob you of your peace. Jesus said, “Peace I leave with you, My peace I give to you; not as the world gives do I give to you. Let not your heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid” (John 14:27).

4. Establish your heart on God. This means build your life on God. Go to Him at the first sign of stress. Vent your frustrations on Him. He can handle it.

5. Sort out your priorities. We often get stressed out because we’re doing too much. Once when I was feeling particularly frazzled, I cried out to God in frustration. “Lord,” I said, “I just don’t have enough time to do everything I have to do!” Lovingly He replied, “You always have enough time to do what I have called you to do.” I realized then that I was doing some things that He had not called me to do, even though they were good things.

6. See life from God’s perspective. God’s perspective is eternal. He sees the big picture. We should do the same. When we do, those little irritations of daily life fade into insignificance.

So no matter what you’re facing today, remember that it’s temporary. As you focus on God, He’ll get you through every situation, no matter how serious. And as you focus on Him, you’ll have peace in the midst of every storm.

Guaranteed! 🙂

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In my newest work of fiction, SURRENDER TO LOVE, young widow and life coach, Dr. Teresa LopezPicMonkeyFINAL061815416pm Gonzalez, has no peace until she learns to keep her eyes focused on Jesus.

Available in Kindle and print versions.

You may leave a comment by clicking here. To receive these blog posts in your emailbox, please click here.

If you found this post helpful, please pass it on to someone who can benefit from reading it. Thank you!

If you have any questions, you may contact me as follows:

Email: drmaryann@maryanndiorio.com
Snail Mail: PO Box 1185, Merchantville, NJ 08109
Tel. 856-488-3580
________________________________
Copyright 2015 by Dr. MaryAnn Diorio. All Rights Reserved. This article may not be published or printed in any form whatsoever without the written permission of Dr. MaryAnn Diorio. You may contact her at maryann@maryanndiorio.com to request permission.

Photo by Shaun Menary. Lightstock.com Photo ID: 99422

Amazon.com Required Disclosure:  MaryAnn Diorio is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to Amazon.com.

Dr. Diorio is a Certified Life Coach, a Certified Biblical Counselor, and a Certified Behavioral Consultant. She is also an award-winning, widely published author of fiction for children and adults. You may reach her at maryann@maryanndiorio.com  or via one of her social media venues below: