Trusting over Feeling

Trusting over Feeling

Trust Wooden Letterpress Concept

Yes, [God] wants you to sense His Presence, but He’s more concerned that you trust Him than that you feel Him. Faith, not feelings, please God   -Rick Warren

Do you ever feel like God is hiding from you?  Have you ever felt like you were going through the toughest time in your life, and He was no where to be found,  or like your heartfelt prayers were unheard? If you’ve felt these or similar feelings, what were your responses?

I certainly have had times in my life where it seemed like God was silent.  I have cried myself to sleep many nights, wondering if God was even listening to my intense pleas for comfort, clarity, and/or direction. These seasons in my life where God has seemed silent were some of the most challenging times in my faith journey.  My responses have varied during these times.  There have been times when God’s seeming distance made me shut down,  and there  have been times when His seeming distance made me pray more and continue to intentionally draw closer to Him.  There have been times in these seasons when I have felt alone,  depressed,  lost,  and even forgotten….

If  you haven’t experienced these times of seeming distance,  it is inevitable that you eventually will,  You may even be enduring one of these seasons as you read this, and I want you to know that God has not forgotten you. In fact, it is impossible for Him to forget you. Your ability to inhale and exhale in this moment testifies that He hasn’t.  Most importantly,  your breath is evidence that you have not reached the end of your life’s story,  so that means,

 IT AIN’T OVER,  and God’s goodness for your life is still ahead of you! 

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Release It!

Release It!

Regret is looking for you. It wants to suck the life out of your hopes, gimg_6617oals, and dreams for 2018. It wants to remind you of all of the things you set out to do this time last year, but you did not accomplish in 2017. It wants to prove to you that you are not enough, and it wants to convince you that there is no use in even trying because you will end up with the same results.

What I want you to know is that regret is a LIAR. You are enough,  you don’t have to stay chained to  the should-haves, could-haves, and would-haves of your life. Your freedom has already been divinely purchased, and it is God’s will that you walk in your freedom, be released from guilt, shame, and defeat and begin to move forward. Read more

Your Presence IS the Gift

Your Presence IS the Gift

The past two weeks have been challenging, not so much for me personally, but for my loved ones. Two who received devastating diagnosis news about a parent, and several who have been in the throes of the fear and anxiety that just being alive can bring. I was in the middle of a blogging challenge, and feeling deep disappointment within myself for simply not being able to create the extra time to BLOG, while being present for my loved ones, investing time into the women’s organization that I lead, and accomplishing the daily responsibilities of my full time career! In the midst of my wallowing in self-pity for “just not being enough” to get it all done, I felt like I was jolted awake by this thought,

While it’s nice, maybe even “noble” to have a desire to inspire people I don’t know through my writing, it is a part of my  DIVINE PURPOSE to care about, encourage, uplift, pray for, listen to, and BE PRESENT for those who are right in front of my face!

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Where I Live – #30Layers30Days + #BlogLikeCrazy

Where I Live – #30Layers30Days + #BlogLikeCrazy

Growing up it bothered me when I’d hear people say, “I stay there,” in reference to their home, opposed to saying, “I LIVE there.” I would often correct my friends,  “Don’t you mean live there?”   Most people use those two, live and stay, synonymously in this context.  Yet, to me there is a significant difference between the two.  Read more

“A Cracked Door” #30Layers30Days #BloglikeCrazy

“A Cracked Door” #30Layers30Days #BloglikeCrazy

We value doors of opportunity that swing wide open to us because they confirm our greatness. Open doors  give us courage, they build our confidence, and they affirm that we are valuable to others. An open door is an indication that we have been seen, that we matter, and that someone appreciates something that we possess.

If an open door affirms our value, then a cracked door just might make us question it.  We may become Read more

“The Right Person” – #30Layers30Days + #BlogLikeCrazy

“The Right Person” – #30Layers30Days + #BlogLikeCrazy

 

I can’t say that I was waiting for you, but I am thankful that you found me.   I can’t say that I “always knew” because when I met you, I was fully content with being with me. 

I can’t say it was “love at first sight” because though you were immediately handsome to my eyes, I was not looking for love. Read more

“Over Too Soon” #30Layers30Days + #BlogLikeCrazy

“Over Too Soon” #30Layers30Days + #BlogLikeCrazy

Had you caught me several years ago,  I would have had  no problem writing about some experience that I thought was “Over too Soon.”  I likely would have written about the unexpected death of my mother, how the loss of her tangible presence had devastated me, and how I was certain that at just 49 years old, and fairly healthy, she was gone “Too Soon.”  Or maybe I would have kept it light and discussed some pleasant vacation, event, or moment that I desperately did not want to come to an end. Those options would have worked perfectly then, but certainly not now.

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“The Idea of You” #30Layers30Days #BlogLikeCrazy

“The Idea of You” #30Layers30Days #BlogLikeCrazy

The idea of you precedes your conception. You were known before you were knit together. The Master Creator envisioned all that you would be, and He spared nothing, from the inside out, designing you perfectly.
When the Master Creator completed You, His Exquiste Masterpiece, He marveled at His own expertise, and with a loud voice He declared, “It is Good”. And just like that, You were complete. Whole. Lacking nothing.  You were, as Perfect and Beautifully you, as you would ever be!
There was only one thing The Master Creator would leave up to you and me, and that is the faith to believe that this could even be. He designed you with the ability to choose what to believe and what to reject, and He determined that your belief would be the fuel to guide your steps. Read more

Don’t Focus on Your Haters, Pray For Them…

Don’t Focus on Your Haters, Pray For Them…

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If you know me personally,  you’d be surprised that I am even entertaining the topic of “Haters.”  I am known by my friends for despising this entire discussion.  I think people have a lot less haters than they think, and I also think people cheat themselves out of meaningful relationships because they are fearful of , or assume people are “hating.” 1491443229931Yet, as I read and wrote tonight’s Scripture passage, found in Luke 23: 33-38, I was inspired to dedicate this one discussion to the “Haters”,   after all,  they do exist, and I’ve never argued that.

In the text, we find Jesus being Crucified.  In the midst of being tortured and mocked,  He isn’t feeling sorry for Himself,  and He is not angry at the people who are responsible for His Crucifixion . Instead,  He concerns Himself with their well-being.  And instead of cursing them,  He prays,

Father, forgive them, for they don’t know what they are doing (Luke 23:34).

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Be Prepared to Carry Your Cross…

Be Prepared to Carry Your Cross…

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Have you watched the movie  The Passion of Christ? I have only seen it once at the movie theater when it was first released. I found myself crying and burying my face in my hands so many times during the graphic depiction of the Crucifixion.  I can remember thinking to myself,  “You need to face this,” but no amount  of “self-coaching” would allow me to keep from turning away periodically. It was so difficult to watch , and I can 1491356395900only imagine that it was much worse than what was depicted on the screen.  Tonight’s passage is from Luke 23:26-30. I read it several times focusing on each verse.  I kept coming back to verse 26,

As they led Jesus away a man named Simon who was from Cyrene, happened to be coming from the countryside.  The soldiers seized him and put the cross on him, and made him carry it behind Jesus.

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