Wednesday, March 30, 2011

The Perfect Anti-histamine

Pollen is not my eight year old son Joey's friend.  If he comes into contact with one particle of pollen, he almost immediately has a flare up.  Itchy, watery, swollen eyes; scratchy throat and nose; uncontrollable breaks my heart to see him suffer so badly.

Because his flare-ups are so bad during the spring-time, I came up with a simple solution to help minimize his suffering.  Every morning, no matter what, I give him a dose of his allergy medicine.  Because the antihistamine is already in his system, whenever he comes into contact with pollen, dust, or latex his allergies are not affected.  But should I forget to give him his daily dose, those allergens put a good whooping on my baby.

I thought about how this applies to us spiritually.  I figure pollen represents Satan, and the antihistamine represents The Word of God.

Unlike Joey's allergies, Satan's attacks are not seasonal...they are year-round.  Coming into contact with Satan often causes our natural man to flare up.  Depression, sexual immorality, gossip, lying, hatred...he can cause our flesh to act up pretty badly.

But, if we have God's word as our antihistamine against Satan, then why is it that many of us find ourselves constantly having a spiritual allergy attack?  It's because we often fail to be consistent with making sure we get our daily dose of medicine...God's word.

Ephesians 6:11 tells us, "Put on the full armor of God, so that you can take your stand against the devil’s schemes."  A big part of that armor is the Word.  Without it we have no power against the enemy. It is absolutely imperative that we feed our spirit daily, so that we will have what we need to combat the devil.

I know life gets busy, and sometimes it's hard to set aside that time to get our daily dose from our Father through His word; however, unless we want to find ourselves constantly falling prey to spiritual allergens, I think it behooves us all to be consistent in filling up on the perfect allergen blocker...the Word of God.

Til we meet, laugh, love!

Peace & Blessings,

Friday, March 25, 2011

It's All About Purpose

I am a very private person.  I am not one to openly share things going on in my personal life.  I guess I am one of those people that believes my business is my business...good or bad.  I have opened up to maybe two people about the inner struggles, my secrets, my shame, my pain, my flaws.  And for me, that is pushing it.  I am a true introvert.

When I embraced my gift to write, it amazed me that God would lead me to be so open.  I could not believe that He would direct me to share particular truths about my life. My skeletons; my deepest, darkest secrets.  Clearly God had lost all of his marbles.

There have been, and still are, times when I'm preparing to write for EEW or the blog, that I flat out tell God "I'm NOT sharing that! Give me something else."  And you know what happens?  I end up staring at a blank screen, with a blank mind until I give over and allow God to speak exactly what He wants to speak through me.  Guess God said He'll show me who's boss!

I had to realize that my life is not my own, and when it comes to operating in purpose you must be willing to die to self and give over fully to the Holy Spirit.  When I vowed that I would say YES to God's will for my life, and give myself away to Him, I meant it.  That means where ever He leads, no matter how uncomfortable or apprehensive I may be, I must follow.  Because it's not about me at all, but it's all for God's glory.  So, if being open and sharing my life is what God requires of me, then so be it.  As long as I know I am led by the Holy Spirit, I have absolutely nothing to fear.

Walking in purpose often leads us into uncomfortable territory, but we can always find comfort in knowing that Our Father will never lead us down a path that will hurt us. Not to say that we won't feel pain and discomfort along the way, but as long as we are in His will, we are safe.

Don't be afraid to use what ever gift God has given you in whatever capacity He sees fit.  It may not be the way you envisioned using it; however, God's way is always the best way. It's all about purpose.

Though I'm still not always comfortable with being so vulnerable and transparent, I know that this is what God requires of me in order to fulfill His purpose for my life.  I realize that there are lives that need to be touched by the ability God gives me to be real about things I've experienced in my life.  And if someone's life will change for the better because of what God has brought me through, then for me it's all worth it.

Commit your ways to the Lord and let Him have full control in every area of your life. You won't regret it.

Til we meet, laugh, love!

Peace & Blessings,

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Embrace Your Authentic Self

Most of my life, I did everything I could to fit in.  I wanted so desperately to be accepted that I often conformed to being someone other than my true self.  Quite honestly, I was totally oblivious to my authentic self; I had no idea who God created me to be.

As long as those I deemed cool accepted me, that's all that really mattered to me.  I was afraid to be me, because I didn't think that anyone would like me for who I truly was.  I didn't think the real me was cool enough to be loved and accepted in the eyes of man.

Retrospectively, I see that at the end of the day I was a fraud...deceiving others by pretending to be someone that I wasn't.  I was merely building relationships based on lies, simply because I was too afraid of possibly having to stand alone. All the while, insulting God by refusing to accept the fact that He perfectly created me.  The authentic me...the me that I hated.

Today, I am so thankful that God has become the most important factor in my life.  My focus is no longer upon being accepted by man, and fitting in to cliques or the popular crowd.  My main focus is to be the best authentic me I can be, embracing the perfect creation God meticulously designed me to be.

Now, don't get me wrong.  Feeling loved and accepted is something we all want; however, it is far better to be accepted for who you truly are than for someone you're pretending to be.  Love and acceptance built upon false pretenses will not last.

When God began to open my eyes to my true identity in Him, I had to peel back layers of conformity before I could even get a glimpse of my true self.  Coming into the real me, I struggled to hold on to relationships. It was as if I had to start all over, and reintroduce myself.  This time, totally authentic.  Some accepted me, some didn't. 

It was then that I realized something - Real or fake, there will always be those who simply will not accept you. 

All too often, we spend so much time altering ourselves to fit the likings of others.  This is a recipe for disaster.  You will never be able to fully satisfy people.  There will always be something you need to change in order to keep up with their expectations.  Why put yourself through that?

It's much easier to just be YOU.  No masks, no false pretenses, no deception...true authenticity.  One of the greatest things we can do to please God is to realize that we were fearfully and wonderfully made, a perfectly beautiful masterpiece created by His hands.  And since God is perfect in all of His ways and all of His works are marvelous, then guess what?  You and I are perfectly marvelous creations.  Why not embrace that?

There will always be those cool people that may not like or accept you, but who cares?! Be you anyway.  Anybody can be a clone...dare to be different!

Til we meet, laugh, love!

Peace & Blessings,

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Following God's Lead

Hey guys!

First off, I offer my sincere apologies for the inconsistency of the blog lately.  Aside from me being sick, and my youngest son Jaxon being sick (We're both fine now.), I've been in transition in a particular area of my life, and things became a bit out of whack as far as my schedule goes.  Nevertheless, everything is falling back into place and I am now adjusting to life as a stay-at-home mom.

About eight months ago, I felt like God was speaking to me about leaving the professional world to focus on home, family, and ministry.  At the time, making that type of move made absolutely no sense to me.  I honestly thought God was crazy, or I was crazy for thinking that's what God was saying to me.

I prayed and prayed for clarity, and I kept hearing the same thing; however, I still wasn't sure.  I talked to my husband Jeremy about what I felt God was leading me to do, and though he thought it would be great for the kids, logically it made no sense to him either.  Back to the drawing board I went.

I earnestly sought God about it, because though I wanted to be obedient to His leading, I also wanted to be certain that it was indeed Him leading me, to ensure that I would not make the wrong move and my family suffer as a consequence.  I mean, this was something I had never even considered.  It was definitely not the path I had in mind for my life.

After months of praying, I still had doubt.  So I decided to completely remove the thought from my mind once and for all.  I made a deal with God - Whenever I have another baby, I'll stop working.  You know God has a sense of humor, right?!  Because just a few weeks later, I found out that we were expecting.

Needless to say, I chose to heed to what I believed God was saying.  And the final push actually came from my husband.

Though there were a few rough patches and doubtful moments between then and now, here I am following God's lead.  I don't know exactly what lies ahead of me on this new path, but I do know that as long as I continue to trust God with the direction of my life, I will always be exactly where He wants me to do.  Is this a path that I would have freely chosen? No.  But I trust God, and my husband and I are happy with our decision.

So, I'm looking forward to whatever God has for me along this path.  I'm excited about what He's doing, and what He's going to do in my life!

You know, when we surrender and commit our lives to Christ, we never really know where He will lead us.  He may lead us in a direction we never thought we'd take, but if we trust Him with all of our heart, and acknowledge Him in all of our ways, that direction will always be the right direction.

For me, it's all about purpose.  Whatever I have to do to fulfill God's perfect purpose for my life, I'm willing to do.

Maybe your life has taken a turn you never expected.  Or perhaps you feel God tugging at your heart to change course in a particular area of your life.  I encourage you to seek His face for clarity and direction, wait for an answer, then follow His lead. 

There is no such thing as regret when you know you are led by The Holy Spirit.

Til we meet, laugh, love!

Peace & Blessings,

Monday, March 7, 2011

My Sister's Keeper

Today my friend from across the miles, Dianna Hobbs, who recently underwent surgery after sustaining an injury from a fall is heavy on my heart and mind today.  Not heavy as in a burden, but in a way that provokes me to fervently seek God on her behalf.  Today, I ask that you join me in being my sister's keeper, and lift her up in prayer.  Rejoice with me for her total recovery and healing.

You know, I used to never take seriously the fact that we are indeed our sister's keeper.  I never even really understood what it meant.  That is, until I met sisters who became my keeper.

They prayed for me when I couldn't pray for myself; lifted me up when I was too weak to stand on my own; encouraged me when I was down; and continue to inspire and motivate me to be the woman God destined me to be.  And yes, as I've shared on the blog before, Dianna is definitely one of those sisters in my life.

I know Dianna has thousands of sisters praying for her and keeping her lifted, but there are so many of our sisters that are alone in their fight.  Some of them are our neighbors, our church members, our co-workers, our favorite cashier...women just like us who need someone to be their keeper.  Someone to encourage them in their time of trouble, and lift them before The Father.

Whether we want to realize it or not, we are our sister's keeper.  Especially as women of God.  It is our responsiblity to cover each other in prayer, inspire and encourage one another, and help one another along this journey through life.  None of us can make it alone. I'm sure there have been times in your life where if it had not been for a sister in corner, you would not have made it through a rough time in your life.

So why not be that same support for another sister.  We should have such Godly love for our sisters that we feel compelled to continuously cover one another in prayer.

Ladies, we are our sister's keeper.  Let's lift, support, encourage, and love one another. We all need one another.

Til we meet, laugh, love!

Peace & Blessings,

Tuesday, March 1, 2011

One of Those Days

Hey y'all!!!

I'm back!  I had to take a short sabbatical to rest, regroup, refresh, and rejuvenate.  We all have those times in our lives when we have to step back from things for a minute, and focus on some immediate issues.  That aside, I'm refreshed and ready to release all that God wants to speak through me.

Though I'm feeling all rejuvenated in my spirit, today has been one of those days.  You know, those days when nothing's really wrong, but you just feel like something's wrong.  One of those don't-bother-me-or-I-just-might-go-off days.  I know you know what I'm talking about...keep it real. :-)

I'm going to just blame it on the fluctuating hormones, because I can. (LOL!)  No, but really I'm not feeling like myself today, emotionally.  God has been showing me A LOT about some of the relationships in my life, and some of the things that He's allowed me to see have gotten me a bit down. 

There are some people you never expect to hurt or mistreat you, but when they do it hurts...and it hurts deep.  But you know, God allows everything for a reason, and He knows who should and shouldn't be a part of our lives.  One thing I have learned is that man will often fail you, because as humans, none of us are infallible.  The ONLY person who will NEVER fail us is God.  I find such comfort in knowing that.

I'm going to spend a little quiet time with the Lord, and allow Him to speak to my heart and heal my hurt, so that I give no room for the enemy to play on my emotions.

If you're having one of those days, or one of those weeks...or maybe even one of those months, I encourage you to spend some time with God.  Get alone in His presence and allow Him to saturate your heart and mind.  Give Him full permission to rest in your situation.  I know you'll feel much better once you do.

Pray for me, and I'll be praying for you!  Oh, and please, please, please continue to pray for my sis, Dianna Hobbs, as she continues to recover. Thanks so much.

Til we meet, laugh, love!!

Peace & Blessings,