Quit Believing Lies

Let me just jump right on in and say: WE HAVE to QUIT believing the LIES that WE tell ourselves!

 

Oh, you don’t lie to yourself? Really? You just lied.

 

“I’m NOT GOOD ENOUGH”.

“They’ll think I’m stupid.”

“UNWORTHY”

“I’m just a ….. (you fill in the blank.)”

“There’s already a book, blog, song, poem, business like that.”

“I don’t know as much as he/she appears to know.”

 

Those are just a few of the lies we tell ourselves.

 

Good grief. Why do we do it? It’s like our own little pity party.

 

Here’s a thought. When we make excuses like those above, or tell ourselves those lies, we give ourselves an EXCUSE to DO NOTHING.

 

Ouch.

 

NO MORE EXCUSES.

 

See, the GOD who made us IS ABLE.

AND HE IS ABLE TO DO MUCH MORE THAN WE CAN IMAGINE!

If you truly have a relationship with God, then HE is at work IN YOU.

NO MORE EXCUSES.

 

I am the queen of  believing those lies above. I get these BIG DREAMS and even feel like I am called to DO SOMETHING, and then I listen to the lies and even BELIEVE them. Then I say to myself (yes, I quite often have complete conversations in my head with myself. No I am not crazy) : “That author, blogger, speaker, person already did that and mine wouldn’t be half as good.” Now, just who do I think I am?

It is not about ME!  When we believe the lies and listen to the lies then we are not Believing who HE is and who we are IN HIM. 

Can I get an AMEN?! You too?

 

A dream is just a dream without a plan, so I’ve heard.

Words are just words without action. Am I right?

 

Maybe, just maybe, it is a lack of faith that holds us back. We can say we have faith all day long, but when the rubber meets the road, do we really believe TRUTH? Or do we tend to fall back into the trap of believing LIES.

Lies.

God IS ABLE. He made each one of us with PURPOSE and for a PURPOSE.

What might you be NOT DOING for GOD ?

Are you like me and think that because there is “already something like that out there” that yours isn’t necessary ?

LIES.

What if because of my obedience, your obedience, just ONE life was changed ?

 

Ephesians 3:20 ~ Now to HIM who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to HIS power that is at work within us

 

Until Next Time,

 

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New Year New Me

Look here, you who say, “Today or tomorrow we are going to a certain town and will stay there a year. We will do business there and make a profit.” How do you know what your life will be like tomorrow? Your life is like the morning fog—it’s here a little while, then it’s gone. What you ought to say is, “If the Lord wants us to, we will live and do this or that.” (James 4:13-15 NLT)

It’s been quiet here on the blog. Not because my mind has been quiet.. Because it has not. My mind and soul have been overloaded lately. When that happens, I still write, I just don’t publish. Sometimes it’s quiet on here because God is allowing me some time to learn and grow and even rest.

Learn and grow … I’ve definitely been doing that.

Last year God pulled me back from leading a women’s bible study. I wasn’t quite sure as to why at the time. I still obeyed. Around that time, our oldest daughter, a high school sophomore, began expressing an interest in being in a private school or being homeschooled. She’s a wise teen with big plans and dreams for her future. We looked into both, prayed about it, and sent her back to the public high school.

Still praying. Still growing. Learning new things about myself. Learning that boundaries were biblical and good and healthy. Studied a book called Boundaries by Henry Cloud / John Townsend. I did some bible studies on my own, and completed reading and studying through the entire Bible for my first time ever.

Through the last half of last year, I had shingles.. Which was very rare for someone my age. Stress can cause them to appear to anyone who has ever had chickenpox. I was definitely under some stress. My husband had a back injury that had him confined to the bed and then with a walker for several weeks. Things fell apart in different areas and other things fell together.

I got well, He was healed while on vacation. I mean healed. Instantly.
God was good and always faithful.

We also suffered a tragic loss of a family member in December of 2013. God has been faithful and good to our entire family through that as well. Our family’s faith in God is what has sustained everyone. I honestly don’t know how those who don’t have a relationship with God survive the hard, tragic, and trying times in life.

Now on to 2014. After much prayer and research and more prayer, we signed our oldest up with a wonderful Homeschool group… Classical Conversations. She had her first official day of school this Thursday and we couldn’t be more pleased! Never say never… No, really.. Because that’s what I had always said.

God orchestrated every event and meeting and circumstance in a way that led me to meet with a fellow blogger, friend, and homeschooling mom. Which in turn led to us following HIS call on our life. To begin this journey with one of our children. Praying that our youngest will decide on her own to join as well.

Oh, I forgot to mention something. I was asked in the fall to speak at a girl’s conference at a local church. Talk about out of my comfort zone. The thought scared me to death. Me? Yes, HE said.. me. So, after much prayer and seeking wisdom from other Godly women, I agreed. Why? Because praise GODHE uses the ordinary to do the extraordinary. Thank goodness, HE also equips the called. AND… Because I don’t plan on speaking MY words. I only want to speak HIS. If one girl’s life is impacted, then I can handle a little stage fright.

I’ve learned to balance my life. Put my husband first, after God. I’ve learned that it’s okay to say no. That it is NECESSARY to eliminate stress. I’ve learned that it’s okay to set boundaries. I’ve learned that I do not have to allow negative opinions to affect me. I’ve learned that sometimes God requires me to do things that make no sense to me or anyone else at the time. I’ve learned that I do not have to make everyone happy and that I can’t. I’ve learned to be still and bridle my tongue. I’ve learned to set limits. I’ve learned to trust HIM more.

I can’t wait to see what else I learn this New Year!

It’s a New Year and each day HE is making a new me.

As a quote I found yesterday on Pinterest says: “I may not have always known what I wanted to be, but I’ve always known the kind of woman I wanted to be.”

I’m on my way.

I’m living for God.

I’m not backing down.

I’m not entertaining negativity.

I’m seeking HIS WILL in everything.

I’m stepping out, even further out, of my comfort zone.

I’m NOT feeling guilty for saying no to negativity or drama or for eliminating stress.

Lots of new changes this year. One homeschooled by me, one still in public school ( middle school). A 16 year old with a driver’s license… (Learning the real meaning to praying without ceasing). Speaking at an event for the first time, (In front of teen girls). Who knows what else.. I do know that whether it be good or tragic, God is good and will hold me and my family in the palm of HIS hands.

One last thing, I wrote a list of my goals for this year in my journal. Maybe you have already done the same thing, if not, maybe you should.

Just know this… Your goals are great but be willing to let God interrupt your plans. For HIS plans are much better. Even if we don’t always understand them.

For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways, declares the Lord. (Isaiah 55:8 ESV)

For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future. (Jeremiah 29:11 NIV)

Seeking HIS Will,

Heather

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YOU TALKING TO ME ?

Psalm 18:31,32 (NLT) ~ For who is God except the Lord? Who but our God is a solid rock? God arms me with strength, and he makes my way perfect.

 

I have to be honest. Sometimes I really do find myself talking back to The Holy Spirit. When I feel there is something way out of my league that HE is calling me to do. I really do say.. in my head.. “You talking to me?”

{As if HE would get me confused with someone else. Not possible. HE is GOD.}

The truth is, I don’t feel comfortable doing every single thing that I am prompted to do. That’s where HE comes in. If HE calls then I can obey or disobey.

I can shrink back in fear, and I have been guilty of this, or I can rest in the fact that HE is who equips anyone who HE calls. If it was ME…then it wouldn’t be HE.

 

2 Timothy 1:7 (KJV) ~  For God hath not given us the spirit of fear; but of power, and of love, and of a sound mind.

 

Me…messes up.

Me…gets scared. Really scared. Like, terrified.

Me…wants to sit back and just do my thing..quietly.

BUT.

HE…asks me (and you) to obey.

HE… says “I’ve got this and you are just my tool of choice for this task.”

HE…equips those who HE calls.

 

All of that being said, God has really been working on me lately.

It began back in about April of this year. He pulled me back from leading a women’s bible study for a time. Something that I love doing and still miss! He taught me about getting my priorities in the right order. GOD, My husband, My children, and THEN everyone else. He led me to work on me and the areas that I needed to surrender to HIM.

I obeyed. Not knowing why..just that I HAD to. I waited somewhat patiently for an answer to several questions. I waited some more. Still digging deep into HIS WORD.

Then, HE began opening doors that I never knew would really ever be opened. Doors that scare me. Doors that HE wants opened. Read that again. DOORS that HE wants opened.

There are things that God will call us to do in our lives. If we aren’t listening, we won’t hear HIM. If we aren’t seeking HIM we will miss it. If we are TOO BUSY even with the good stuff, we may miss it. If we say no then we will miss out and at the same time be disobedient. (If you’ve never read some of the history in the Old Testament, you should..you’ll see how disobedience worked out for them.)

It’s really amazing to me how even the Bible studies that I was led to do during this time of alone time are just what I needed. I am currently doing one that has to do with discerning HIS voice. Imagine that! :)

God has led certain people into my path who have been obedient to HIM as well. They have spoken truth and wisdom into my life. All because of obedience and answering HIS prompting.

I have lots more to share with you in the days to come, when it is the right time. I am so excited and nervous and scared…but I know that by being obedient to GOD, I am doing what is right and pleasing in HIS sight. That is what matters. :) {AND, I’m reciting 2 Timothy 1:7 over and over in my mind.}

Do I think I am capable on my own to do anything that HE asks me to do? DEFINITELY NOT. That is awesome though! Because of that FACT, HE gets ALL of the glory! 

As I close, I would like to ask you some questions. Questions that are between you and GOD.

Are you intentionally seeking HIS will for you and your family, or are you intentionally not seeking it because it scares you ? (Hey, that is a valid question..)

Are you ignoring HIS voice, or are you making time to hear it ? (it takes intentionality)

Just know that if you find yourself asking, “You talking to me?” , that there is a good chance that HE is. However, to be completely sure, know that HIS voice matches HIS WORD.

 

 

Until next time,

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Philippians 4:13 ~ I can do all this through him who gives me strength.

Philippians 4:13 ~ I can do all this through him who gives me strength.

How Will It Ever Stop

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Ever been the NEW person?

The only person in the room who doesn’t know anybody?

Ever felt like everyone was staring at you? Judging you?

Ever judged anyone?

Ever been judged?

Fairly or Unfairly?

I think it’s safe to say YES to all the above.

There’s a difference in judging and being wise and making wise choices. We MUST judge situations that we are in and weigh them against THE WORD. We must be wise…But we CAN’T play GOD!

To judge another person based on our opinions is wrong. To judge someone based on our feelings is wrong. To judge someone based on the opinions of others is wrong. To judge someone and label them before we have even given them a chance to show us who they are is wrong.

Matthew 7:2 (NLT) ~ For you will be treated as you treat others. The standard you use in judging is the standard by which you will be judged.

When are we going to stop? Stop judging whether someone is CAPABLE or WORTHY,  in our opinion. How will it ever stop?

It starts with you. It starts with me. One person can make a difference.

The difference between a weed and a flower is what? Perspective and JUDGEMENT.

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Until Next Time,

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For the Whole World To See

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One dog is sitting practically on my head. One is on my legs. The computer in my lap…Chili in the crock pot. The sound of the water running into the aquarium beside me.

There are to-do lists. Places to be. Schedules to keep.

But first, a message to share.

The messages that I share with y’all come to me at the strangest times and places. I’m sure that my other “writer” friends can relate. Especially when it comes to sharing the message that God lays on my heart to share. Sometimes I put it off due to the fact that it seems strange to me. That’s just how it is. I don’t even know why I am writing on a certain topic sometimes…other than the fact that I JUST HAVE TO.

You may not like what I’m sharing today. That’s okay. I don’t write for the approval of man..I only write for God. So, I offer no apologies today. I do love you all though and that’s another reason that I choose to share the hard truths.

I was getting dressed yesterday and this title pops in my head: “FOR THE WHOLE WORLD TO SEE” , Then little details and thoughts start emerging.

Like…..

~ Does your (my) appearance on Social Media match your  (my) appearance in person ?

(and I’m not talking about our profile pictures)

~ Do you (I) talk BIG on FB or Twitter or wherever else, and sit in a corner talking to nobody in public ?

~ Do you (I)  profess Jesus all over the Social Networks and project another image in other settings ?

~ Does your (my) walk match your (my) talk or text or tweet or post ?

~ Do you (I)  wear your (my)  “Christian” t-shirt in public and act like the devil at home ?

~ Do you (I) wear your (my) “Christian” t-shirt in public and put the word “Christian” to shame ?

~ Do you (I) post Bible verses online but never really open your Bible to study it and read it and learn?

Just some thoughts. For all of us to soak on…marinate in. Just being real. Because it MATTERS.

We are the only BIBLES that some people ever read. (Yes, that is someone else’s quote)

It matters how we represent our Jesus.

My pastor said something that really struck me last week during the message. He said that we have really messed up the word: CHRISTIAN. It basically means nothing anymore.

See there are people that say “I’m a CHRISTIAN” and yet they really aren’t. Going to church doesn’t make you a Christian. The fact that your parents made you go your whole life doesn’t  make you a Christian. Doing good things doesn’t make you a Christian. Knowing about Jesus doesn’t make you a Christian. Wearing a Christian t-shirt doesn’t make you a Christian. Posting bible verses doesn’t make you a Christian.

So, what makes you a Christian? I mean a REAL AUTHENTIC TRUE FOLLOWER OF CHRIST?

JESUS.

Jesus is what makes you a CHRISTIAN. Knowing HIM and HIM knowing you. It takes FAITH. It takes surrender. It takes admitting that you are a sinner and that you NEED HIM. It takes faith and believing that Jesus is the Son of God. It takes confessing Jesus as your Lord and Savior.

John 3:16,17 (NIV) ~ For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life. For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but to save the world through him.

It’s simple. Yet we make it hard.

Becoming a Christian doesn’t mean you are all done. It is a daily surrender and choice to FOLLOW God. To learn and study and read The Word. It’s vital that those of us who ARE Christians disciple new Christians or Christians that are not as mature in their walk as they could be. It’s vital that we serve like Jesus.

It takes water for a seed to grow.

Hebrews 5:13,14 (NIV) ~ Anyone who lives on milk, being still an infant, is not acquainted with the teaching about righteousness. But the solid food is for the mature, who by constant use have trained themselves to distinguish good from evil.

CONSTANT USE.

Let’s get to watering! Let’s be real and be willing to make sure that our walk is matching our “talk”. It matters. People are watching. Big people and Little people. 

Now, I did not say that we have to be “PERFECT”…I just mean that we have to stop pretending that we are. ( I’ll be the first person to tell you that “I AM NOT PERFECT” and “I FAIL DAILY”… I mean…even writing this post is hard for me..because I know that I am not perfect.)

Leaving you with these two verses…

James 2:17 (NIV) ~ In the same way, faith by itself, if it is not accompanied by action, is dead.

1 John 3:18 (NIV) ~ Dear children, let us not love with words or speech but with actions and in truth.

Until Next Time…Seeking to Shine,

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Saying NO to the Good Things

I’m a work in progress. Mostly, in progress. :)

Philippians 1:6  (NIV) ~ being confident of this, that he who began a good work in you will carry it on to completion until the day of Christ Jesus.

For the past several months I have been learning to say “NO” without feeling guilty.

That can be hard for a person who doesn’t want to hurt others feelings. Very hard.

It can be very difficult to change patterns of behavior that you have had for most of your life. That “people pleasing” gene.

I’ve learned that I have to say “NO”  to things that are good…in order to say “YES” to the things that should be my priorities. To obey GOD…and aim to please HIM first.

Like I said before, I’m a work IN PROGRESS. I still fail miserably at times.

At first, changes can cause feathers to ruffle. Yours and others. It’s okay though, if you are being obedient to God

Saying NO to distractions that can become an idol. I’m not talking about statues and junk..I’m talking about real life IDOLS. Things and People that can take the place of GOD.

Maybe we don’t think of them as IDOLS…because they aren’t the GOLDEN STATUES that we seems to think of when we hear the word IDOL.

Let’s face it, we all have the potential for idolatry. We all have that thing or person that can easily become the most important “thing” in our lives. Controlling our thoughts, our moods, our lives. It can be our kids, our friends, our spouses,money, jobs, a tv show, food,our hurt feelings, phones, computer, sports…ANYTHING.

Deuteronomy 5:8,9a (NLT) ~ “You must not make for yourself an idol of any kind, or an image of anything in the heavens or on the earth or in the sea. You must not bow down to them or worship them, for I, the Lord your God, am a jealous God who will not tolerate your affection for any other gods.

We have to be intentional every single day about putting GOD first and CENTER in our lives.

Maybe it is too much volunteering. Or maybe too much social media. Or maybe it is not seeking HIS will and not asking HIM before we say YES to something. Maybe it is putting friends before our spouses and children. Maybe it is saying YES out of fear of ruffling feathers if we say NO. Maybe just maybe it is laziness. Maybe it is not BEING PRESENT because of being distracted by our own choices. 

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It can even be as simple as allowing texts or notifications from people you care about interfere with being present where God wants you to be at that moment. It is okay..I am learning..thanks to friends that speak truth in a bold way into my life, to let those things wait. Every text or notification does not require an immediate response. Especially if it prevents you from BEING PRESENT where you are. And for a person like me, I had to really discipline myself with this one. What could we be missing because we aren’t really there?

It is a choice.

Since my children have told me that they don’t read my blog… (YES, they told me. :) ) , and since I don’t care if they do read this and see that I referenced them… (it’s not embarrassing), I have to share a text conversation that I had with my daughter just this morning about choices.

Daughter: “I hope I wasn’t tardy today because my friend made me go to the gym with her.”

Me:” Um. Made u? Your choice. Next time say no.”

Me:” U always have a choice. I hope u weren’t either. Be a leader not a follower. Love u.”

I share that with you only to show just how easy it is for us to choose. It wasn’t a BAD thing..

Shoot..I share it with you because I have done the same exact thing before.

IT IS A CHOICE.

To say NO to things that we know we need to say NO to. Even if it isn’t something seemingly harmful.

If we are constantly saying YES to every single thing then we can’t possibly be giving our very best to the things that GOD wants us to focus on.

What is it that you may need to re-think? What is it that you may need to weed out? What is it that is suffering because of too many wrong Yesses?

Just because it isn’t BAD doesn’t mean that it is GOOD. Meaning, Saying NO to the Good Things is sometimes necessary in order to say YES to the RIGHT things.

Until Next Time….A Work In Progress,

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Cutting Loose

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I think it is extremely important for us to remember that ANYTHING or ANYONE that we put first in our lives…becomes an idol. So, if it isn’t God that is first…then we have to re-adjust..re-order the things in our lives. With that being said….

Do you have too much on your plate? Are you loaded down with “things” that get in the way of what should really be your top priorities ? You know…Too many activities, things that take away from God and family, too much social media, too many clubs, too much volunteering. That is just to name a few.

We shouldn’t let our lives speed out of control. We should live intentionally. Keeping our priorities in order helps make this intentional living possible.

Psalm 39:6 has this to say about living lives that are too busy and filled with too many distractions: “We are merely moving shadows, and all our busy rushing ends in nothing. We heap up wealth, not knowing who will spend it.”

I am working on simplifying my life. Eliminating certain things from my life…one of those things being my personal Twitter account. I LOVE Twitter..I love Social Media. It just distracts me. So..I am changing it to my “blog Twitter” and no longer a personal Twitter account. I have removed a few more social media distractions as well. I am also being more intentional about the quality in the time that we spend with our little family…Making sure that my family is first after God. Another thing that I have been doing is reading a book called The Excellent Wife. It is written by Martha Peace. I highly recommend it. This book has really made me look at my role as wife in the way that God wants me to view it. Convicted to say the least.

Is there SOMETHING or are there some things that YOU may need to cut loose of for a time?

Here are a few signs that you may have too many distractions or things out of order:

~ Stress (no brainer)

~ Irritability.. because you feel rushed all of the time.

~ Never seem to be able to finish a task.

~ Complaints from husband/wife/children that you never have time for them..or if you are with them they say you are distracted.

~ No time for bible study or quiet time.

~ No time for quality family time.

~ Exhaustion (mental and physical)

~ Feeling the “need”  to check your multiple social media sites throughout the day ..but never feeling the need to open your bible app or open your bible .

There’s got to be balance. If you give a majority of your time to volunteering, social media sites, friends, etc.. and find that your time with Jesus and your husband/wife/kids is less than the others, it’s time to refocus and get things (people) back in the correct order.

In “THE EXCELLENT WIFE”, Martha Peace writes: Wives are also to love their husbands as their closest neighbor. The Lord Jesus made it clear, “You shall love your neighbor as yourself” (Matthew 22:39). Compare how hard you work at showing love to your girl friends with how hard you work at showing your love to your husband. He is your closest neighbor. He should come first.

(This goes for husbands as well…)

So, I invite you to join me in taking a look at your life and praying about what God wants you to do so that you will glorify HIM. There is freedom in surrender. True peace and joy comes when we have our lives in the right order. The alternative is stress and feeling all out of whack. I hope you’ll join me in looking deep within and seeing what you need to change..who knows, you may not need to change a thing. Chances are, somebody that you know may need to. So, share this post if you think it could help someone.. There are also several links to other posts that I placed in this one. (Hoping that one will help even just one person.)

             Until Next Time,

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HER TESTIMONY

No spirit of fear here!

No spirit of fear here!

Philippians 4:13 ~ I can do everything through HIM who gives me strength.

Isaiah 40:31 ~ but those who hope in the Lord will renew their strength. They will soar on wings like eagles; they will run and not grow weary, they will walk and not be faint.

Psalm 34:4 ~ I sought The Lord, and he answered me; he delivered me from all my fears.

I have something really amazing to share with you today!

I have just returned from an awesome weekend retreat with 60 something women. We feasted on HIS Word and lives were changed! I am so blessed by new friendships made and old friendships being strengthened. GOD is GOOD!

The story that I am sharing today, is not my own. I asked this sweet woman if she would allow me to share it. Why? Because….I want you all to see that there is POWER in prayer and that FEAR has no hold on you when you fully trust God. THIS IS HER TESTIMONY..all glory to GOD. ALL GLORY TO GOD!!

Thank you, Tawanna, for allowing me to share your story…I love you and I am so very proud of you!

In her words:

The Bridge

Every year, our church holds a women’s retreat at Epwroth by the Sea on St. Simon’s island. The retreat has been a blessing to me and my family because every year, I leave something on the island, and bring home something new that I have learned about the goodness and mercy of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. I look forward to this yearly ritual that we have come to have where we spend the weekend in fellowship and worship. We sang, we prayed, we danced, we laughed, we cried. Trying to put the weekend into words is a bit challenging but if I had to chose one word, I would chose the word blessed because that is how I feel every time I am on that island.

The one struggle that I have is crossing that bridge that connects the island to the actual town. The first year that we went, I was riding with 2 of my dearest friends. As we started to near the bridge I looked to my left and at first I didn’t know that it was an actual bridge. From a distance, it looked like a big building, I thought to myself and said out loud, “Hey guys, check out that bridge. The blue is so beautiful it almost looks like the color of the sky. As we got closer to the turn my friend in the back said, “That’s not a building it’s a bridge.” As I burst into laughter, I told my friends that I was so glad that we wouldn’t be going over that contraption. I then started to laugh and make comments about the courageous people that went over it daily and I started to thank God that we were not amongst them. The more I talked the more my friends became quiet. They had no idea that I had a fear of bridges, being over water, and certain high places. As I am talking and laughing and talking and laughing, I realized that the turn that I was making towards the left, led me right towards that bridge. Well I started to yell and scream and panic. I started to drive in the middle two lanes, so the people behind me and the people that were trying to come down on the opposite lane, had to merge into one lane. As they honked their horns and yelled at me, and some made obscene gestures and said obscene things, I panicked even more started yelling back and telling everyone that I am on a retreat and that they cannot yell at me. You see I was like Peter in Matthew 14:29. We were all doing fine as we were driving and God was leading us, but I took my eyes off Jesus and started to let fear abide in me. This caused me to panic and to start driving in the middle of the bridge.

On the very last day of the retreat, our beautiful pastor’s wife Lanelle Rogers, asked that the ladies of the retreat pray for and with me, that I may conquer my fear and successfully cross that bridge. I crossed it, but I wasn’t trusting God. I allowed my friend to drive while I sat in the backseat sobbing with a huge sweater wrapped around my head. I placed the garment over my head as soon as we left Epworth by the Sea and did not take it off until I was told that we were well across the bridge. I didn’t want to see what was going. That weekend I had learned so much and was filled with so much love for Christ but I still was not trusting in him.

This year I was blessed to go back. I was so excited that I was able to attend. I asked my girlfriend and fellow sister in Christ Kim Wade to drive as I started to speak fear into my life. I told her that I just knew that I wouldn’t not make it on my own and made her drive. We had agreed that I would sleep the entire way there, and I had gotten up at 2am that morning so that I would be tired and would want to sleep. Kim and I have not seen each other in months so we did what ladies do best. We talked, and talked, and talked. Before we knew it, my phone rang and it was the member of the church that we were following, Lisa Colburn. She called and said that we were approaching the bridge and that she wanted to warn me because she knows of my fears.

We were approximately 5 minutes away and I allowed fear to take over my body. As we crossed the bridge I pulled my shirt over my head and started to scream and holler. The more I hollered the more I panicked. I started to hyperventilate and then before I knew it I was unable to breathe. In the midst of me trying to catch my breath, I became nausea. I closed my eyes, open the car door (not knowing that we were going 55 mph) and started to vomit until my stomach was empty.

I then spent the first night of the retreat staying up until 2am trying to find alternate routes off of the island so that I could avoid the bridge on the way home. While staying up I missed the fellowship that was going on downstairs right beneath me and later discovered that there was only one way off of the island, and it was over that bridge.

This weekend we learned how to abide in God and to allow Him to abide in us. I really paid close attention to the messages that were brought, the testimonies that were shared and on the last morning, once again, my sisters in Christ wrapped their hands around me, surrounded me and prayed on me and for me. Prior to leaving God sent an angel in the form of Heather Dawkins. As she hugged me she prayed for me and that I would not only make it over the bridge, but that I would open my eyes and look at the beauty that God has created all around me. As she prayed, I thought to myself, “how could I be afraid of God’s beauty?” It was then that I started to think about the bridge and what it represented. That bridge and my fear of it, represented the chains that had me in bondage. I then wrote down things that had me in bondage on several slips of paper and folded them into little pieces. As my friend and I crossed the bridge, I cracked the window. Although nervous in the beginning, I started to quote the scripture 2 Timothy 1:7, for God did not give us the spirit of fear. And I just kept reciting that scripture as I threw the slips of paper out of the window. When I looked at both sides of the bridge, I became humbled by the beauty that surrounded me, and how awesome God’s works are. That bridge no longer represents my fears, but the relationship that I have with Christ as his daughter. I am set free, no longer bound, no more chains holding me.

2 Timothy 1:7: For God hath not given us the spirit of fear; but of power, and of love, and of a sound mind.

WOW!!! Isn’t GOD good!!!!???!!!! So many people were praying for Tawanna…and they never ceased to pray and care… The BODY of Christ lifted her up…and allowed God to use them in her life. Please feel free to comment on this post and tell Tawanna what you thought of her awesome testimony…and share it with others..so that GOD can receive the glory that HE so deserves. :)

Until Next Time,

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Slow Down

SLOW DOWN...or you'll miss the beauty around you. ~HD

SLOW DOWN…or you’ll miss the beauty around you. ~HD

 

Psalm 90:12 ~ Teach us to number our days aright, that we may gain a heart of wisdom

 

There are times when I can be so impatient with my husband and daughters..especially our youngest. She’s the one who is most like him. I find myself rushing our girls. Hurry up. Come on. Let’s go. RIGHT now.

Time. It’s a precious commodity. Why do I rush it so?

I savor each moment with them. I love them so. Yet, I rush..rush…rush..

I don’t want the things that my children to remember about their childhood to be a bunch of “rush”. Now, mind you, some of the time, it is their fault for lagging behind. BUT, I still can choose to not let “time” make me frazzled. I can choose to live at a more relaxed pace. To be easygoing and “come what may”, when we are running behind.

I want to not live a “hurried” life.

Because…when we hurry..we miss things.

I don’t want to miss a thing.

In my devotion that I am doing daily, Ann Voskamp writes these thought-provoking truths:

   “Doesn’t all the hurry make us hurt? Slow never killed time. It’s the rushing and racing, the trying to catch up, this is what kills time – ourselves. WHY IN THE WORLD DO WE KEEP WOUNDING OURSELVES? Life is not an emergency.” { DEVOTION 11 ~ One Thousand Gifts Devotional, Ann Voskamp}

Might you, too, need to slow down?

Living life at a slower pace can really be a good thing.( Shhhhh. Don’t tell my kids and husband that. :) )

   “To live is the rarest thing in the world. Most people exist, that is all.” ~ Oscar Wilde

 

               Until Next Time,

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That’s. Not. Healthy.

I’m good at stuffing. Stuffing drawers. Stuffing cabinets. Stuffing closets. AND, yes, stuffing my feelings. Throw it all in and hurry and slam it shut before it falls out or comes undone. Just, out of sight, out of mind.

That’s. Not. Healthy.

So, to be honest..it took me writing out my testimony to realize some of the reasons that I stuff. Some are just hereditary..and some are because of choices made.

So, after realizing some truths, I began to make some changes.

And..I began to change.

Now, I still fight the battle of stuffing. No, I’m not a hoarder by any means.I have no problem throwing away stuff.  I just tend to get overwhelmed and want to forget about it. That’s the case with organizing my home and my emotions.

You can’t break a lifelong habit overnight. It takes intentionality….To make healthy changes. It takes work.

When it comes to being unorganized…I found that admitting I can’t do it alone helped me a lot! I asked for help from someone near and dear to me..(she knows who she is). She’s a natural at this sort of thing. So, we organized and MAN, is life getting easier! I can focus better. It is awesome!

Now, as far as the emotional stuffing goes…That is a work in progress. There’s a thin line we have to be careful of. To still bridle the tongue and glorify God in everything.

To keep in mind that making a big deal about feelings…makes it ABOUT ME…not God.

To trust HIM in every situation and at the same time to deal with emotions, hurts, and feelings instead of stuffing them down. Pretending that they don’t exist. That’s. NOT. Healthy. But trusting HIM and giving it ALL to HIM to handle…That’s WAY BETTER than stuffing.

Psalm 28:7 ~ The Lord is my strength and my shield; my heart trusts in him, and I am helped.

So…I’m still a work in progress. Learning what to stuff and what not to stuff. Learning that everything has a place and that includes emotions.

I challenge you to look at yourself…Are you a stuffer? Or are you an exploder? Lysa Terkeurst’s book, Unglued, is a fantastic book.. She talks about the four reaction types. Most of us are more than just one type of reactor. Here is her blog post where she discusses the four types.

I’m so glad to know that God is not finished with me yet.

Philippians 1:6 ~ being confident of this, that he who began a good work in you will carry it on to completion until the day of Christ Jesus.

Until Next Time,

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