The Battle is Messy and it’s Hard

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I'm reading a fiction book titled "Candle in the Darkness" by Lynn Austin for my book club. I am not much of a fiction reader because I'm pretty picky about what I read, but this book is amazing. I love fiction books that can provide you with a great story but also encourage you in your walk. This book is based in Virginia during the start of the Civil War. As the war begins you find all the men in Richmond Virginia signing up to serve in the war, leaving their families and loved ones behind. They are willing to risk everything for something they strongly believe in. It always inspires me when someone is willing to stand up and risk everything in order to defend something they love and truly believe in. Often I feel we are encouraged because we feel it's right in our heart, and it's for a cause we truly believe in. Our motivation is there and our heart is fully committed. In the beginning of our journey to surrender all for what we believe in, we are almost lost in … [Read more...]

Who dares accuse us whom God has chosen for his own?

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I can often tell when my husband is not having a wonderful day, or he is especially struggling. Often I will take his annoyance as a personal offense. In my hurt feelings I will often use his weakness against him. In those moments I will react out of my own insecurities, and my own self preservation, as if he isn't allowed to be frustrated or overwhelmed with life. I am also very gifted in reading people's faces or their body language. Again I will take their annoyances, frustrations, suspicions, or indifferences on as a personal attack. The truth is we ALL get overwhelmed at some point in time and say things we wish we didn't say, or do things we wish we didn't do. We all struggle with indifference, being too sensitive, unmerited suspicions, and so on. We ALL struggle with these emotions! God has been speaking grace over my life. GRACE in my own weakness AND in others weakness. Often when I would run from a situation The Lord would prompt me to stay, wait, and stand … [Read more...]

Selfless Faith

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Three years ago, on July 29, 2011 I published my first eBook: Desires of My Heart. Since self publishing my first book I have sold AND given away tens of thousands of ebooks and paperback books. A lot of people stay away from the self publishing route because they feel they can never reach a certain status or even standard. But some people go the self publishing route because they believe God has a message that He wants to get through them. Some people write because they desire to be obedient to the call God has placed on their life. Others stay away from the idea of self publishing, or even obedience to the call God has placed on their life out of fear or even pride. One of the biggest things that was holding me back from continuing the self publishing route was the fear that I would be writing to myself - I feared no one would read my books, then I thought "What's the point?" But in my faith I trusted that my books would be read by whomever the Lord wanted to read them! I had … [Read more...]

The Heart of a Warrior

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When I was in sixth grade I decided to try out for the volleyball team. It was a huge step for me considering I hated gym class, and I was very insecure about my weight. This decision was based solely on the fact that while in gym class I found that volleyball was the only sport I liked to play. So I mustered up enough courage to go to the tryouts. As a child I struggled with anxiety on a daily basis, although I didn't know that's what it was at the time. I often found myself in the nurses office with the same excuse that my belly hurt. After awhile, when I was having a bad day at school, I learned that this often got my mom to come pick me up and take me home, so I would often lie about my belly hurting so I could go home. On the day of the volleyball tryouts I was nervous. My stomach DID hurt that day, I went to the nurses office and she said, "How are you going to be on the volleyball team when your stomach hurts all the time?" The nurse was on to me. She knew I often … [Read more...]

Through Faith

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Lately I have been struggling with offenses. The reality of the offenses I have made towards others, and their offenses towards me. It is definitely something that causes me a lot of anxiety and I spend way too much time thinking about them. For a portion of my quiet time I have been reading Romans. It has truly been wrecking my heart. Not only have I been confronted with my tendency to build cases against people but also that I expect for God to somehow be on my side. In Romans it talks about how Jesus intercedes for us on our behalf. I use to think as I was pleading my case in offenses made towards me I had come to the realization that I almost desired for The Lord to bring justice to the situation. My heart always saw God as the rescuer because that's what I've always been taught, that God will rescue me in my time of trouble. But even in the events surrounding my husband's illness, and many prayers of mine going unanswered, I've come to the conclusion that Jesus isn't … [Read more...]

What is influencing your actions?

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Recently my husband had a routine endoscopy - also known as a surveillance endoscopy - for his achalasia. One of the things the doctors told us when my husband was diagnosed was that this disease increased his risk of esophageal cancer, that's why the doctor recommended having an endoscopy every two years to monitor how he is doing. This year as I was preparing my heart for whatever the doctor would say at his routine endoscopy, I had to face something that lingered in my heart for years; the fact that this disease often influenced my actions, and my life. I had been to a point where I was thinking I needed to find out what the doctor says before I can move forward. I'm not sure why the fear was there. Maybe we were really only three years out from his diagnosis and I didn't know what to expect. I personally have had trouble finding stable ground in the past 5 and half years - ever since my husband started getting symptoms. After my husband's endoscopy on June 10th we … [Read more...]

Who is influencing your heart?

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Often we can get caught up in our offenses. We can journal to God about all the people who have disappointed us, or who have hurt us. We spend so much time building a case against our offender(s), and we do whatever we can to get God on our side, and hope that He will console our wounded heart. Just the other day I was doing this very thing, making a list of all the people who have recently disappointed me. I also made sure I listed WHY I had to forgive them because I felt like God needed to take note of what I was forgiving. I also made sure to note how difficult it was going to be to trust them ever again, and how I was completely justified in that considering the events that had led to this conflict in my heart. It always amazes me how much God knows me. He knows me more than I do, and you know what? He is NOT disappointed in me. During that same prayer time where I was building up my case against these people, God pointed out that He wasn't disappointed in me despite … [Read more...]

How to NOT Feel Like a Complete Failure

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There are often days when the overwhelming feeling of failure sets itself right on my shoulders. The path I thought God wanted me to take seems to be the hardest path. The purpose I feel God has on my life seems to be done better by so many other people around me. The path is never easy, I'm not sure where I got the idea that God's purpose for my life would be easy. I can't seem to recall a hero in the Bible who stepped out in faith ever having it easy? Why do we feel it will always be crystal clear, without cost, or without major failures, or without confronting difficult people? Life is full of twists and turns. Just last night I was talking to a friend, and I told her that when I thought I was ready for the ministry God had for me I realize now I wasn't even close to being ready, and I'm not even sure I'm ready NOW! Through our steps of faith we are refined and prepared for the ministry God has for us. Our refinement is our ministry. The ministry God has placed on … [Read more...]