Tuesday, October 9, 2018

Ways to work at maintaining your peace.

"Turn away from evil and do good. Search for peace, and work to maintain it." Psalm 34:14

As you may know, Peace is one of the fruits of the spirit that our lovable Christ Jesus has left us with as a gift, (John 14:27) and even when we've received that gift, by faith, I believe working to maintain it is the next big thing that should take place. 

In our very own lives, we all have something we desire to have peace about. Maybe its with family, certain relationships, circumstances, whatever the case may be we just want the peace of God to overwhelm us concerning our lives. Take a moment to look at your life honesty and ask yourself.. "Am I at peace?" and if not "What is it that I need to ask God for his peace about?"

As we continue to walk with God, we'll realize certain phases of our lives that teaches us how to learn to choose peace no matter what it feels like. Seems hard doesn't it? Well, honestly it is as hard as you make it. And that's one thing I want to talk with you about. How to maintain your peace in a chaotic world that wants you to just lose it. Did you know that even the smallest things we don't seem to realize can disturb our peace? Such as Social media, somebody else's business, or things we know we have no control over. Let's discuss these ways to maintain your peace. 

1. Breaks from social media. 

Social Media has the unfortunate power to control and define people. Base on what we view, we feed into what we think we need to keep up with, to whom we compare ourselves to, and why our lives aren't perfectly matching the "so-called" perfect lives on our timelines. It's quite overwhelming sort to speak isn't it? Trying to keep up with the world is hectic. Especially when you know you have such a special call on your life, the last thing the Lord wants you to do is try to keep up. That's why breaks from social media produces peace. 

I can testify. When I have off days from work, I find it peaceful to just take some moments away from my phone to just rest; spending quiet time with the Lord, maybe watching some shows, (preferably cartoons; I somehow find peace in that! Haha) but just doing something other than scrolling on social media most of the time. I've found peace in saying, "It's okay to take a break from the world." Watch what it does spiritually when you challenge yourself in that manner. Part of the reason I've been so eager about taking breaks is because I wasn't guarding my heart while scrolling. I was in transition at the time and completely vulnerable; allowing myself to compare to other followers. I felt miserable, tired, and exhausted trying to find understanding to my current season. But I knew I wasn't going to get it from social media, because that left opportunities for the enemy to plant bad seeds. 

I knew I needed to step away and make that a habit. Whether if it is an hour or two.  Stepping away felt amazing. It helps you to realize that there's more to life than what you see on your screen. It helps you to refocus on what's more important. I was overwhelmed by all the great news I was seeing down my timeline, I couldn't congratulate honestly because I didn't have peace with where I was at. Indeed, the breaks were necessary to refocus on God and where he had me. Peace couldn't be found in scrolling nor could my identity either. And it took honesty with myself to find my peace and to maintain it by taking those breaks. 

Have you allowed social media to take away your peace in any way, shape, or form? 
If so, it's okay to take breaks. Your mental health matters. The matters of your heart are cared for. God wants you to live in peace. We won't let social media disturb our peace, we will guard our hearts and maintain the peace God has given us. Always remember that the world can wait;  Your peace is important and "Me Time" is imperative.  

2. Minding your own business. 

If you suffer, however, it must not be for murder, stealing, making trouble, or prying into other people’s affairs. - 1 Peter 4:15 

I don't think people understand the power of minding your own business and the peace that it produces when doing so.The most tempting place to pry around is at your workplace. There's always going to be something going on with another co-worker that you'll eventually end up gossiping with someone about. 

Prying: excessively interested in a person's private affairs; too inquisitive. 

With a guilty conscience (but not with a condemned spirit) I can testify and say that I have been at work like..."What happened?!" "Who said what? Who did what?"  Dying to know all the facts that i'll eventually move on from later anyways. It's almost like "What's my point?" Some things can be avoided, for the purposes of what it could lead to. Always knowing what's going on causes unnecessary drama that you weren't meant to be part of. When I got myself involved into someone else's problem at work, it felt like it became my own and it made me furious. It did nothing but cause drama that took away the peace within the environment and with each other. It was such a great conviction to really lay low and get back focused on why God has me there in the first place. 

When you're focused on God, you don't really have time to feed into business that doesn't involve you. You purposely stay away because you know what it could cause, you know how it can lead to stress. With minding my own business, it taught me how to even be careful with whom I choose to be in conversation with. If that person is always speaking negative about other co-workers, 9 times out of 10, that person isn't wise to engage with, especially when you're working on maintaining your peace. I'm working on being more vocal about changing the subject or just letting them know that i'm not interested in such negativity. When seeking to have a positive day, you have the right to protect that goal. You maintain your peace when your armor is fully set. You are in control of what you allow in your heart. We pray to bring the peace of God to work. And maybe it isn't always peaceful at your workplace, the peace you've developed with the Lord at home, carry with you always, despite of current vibes you may feel at work. Go with the mindset of minding yours, and the next time you feel tempted to know what's going on, remind yourself how pleasing it is to God to not get involved into other's affairs and of the peace you wish to maintain.

Reading that scripture set the tone of how I should daily approach going to work; it really does maintain the peace of God when you focus on him and the tasks that are given to you. How many of us have been involved into someone else's business and it became stressful? I pray that you know prying around does nothing but add disturbance to your peace. I pray that we begin to continue focusing on God and where he has us, and maintain that peace that came along with it. 

3. Letting go of things we have no control over. 

I don't know about you, but sometimes I can be a little of a control freak. I like to settle situations on a happy note, if a conflict arises. I like to try to make matters to a lot circumstances in my life that the Lord consistently reminds me that I have no control over. If we're honest, how many of us try to take control of the things only we know God can fix and do? 

Can I share something with you? When I mentioned "settling situations on a happy note, when a conflict arises" I have a heart of caring, that became a little overwhelming because I had no control of how that person felt or the decisions they decided to make. The last time I tried to do that, I was at work, and I had a talk with my manager and the most highlighting thing he told me was, "You can't fix everything." I sat and pondered on that for a few, and realized that indeed, I can't. I got into a situation (That wasn't my business to begin with, (prying around) and let's just say things got taken out of proportion and hostility was aimed towards me, which I didn't take lightly. I felt I could fix the problem by just talking it out, defending myself and clearing my name out of such foolishness but it didn't go quite as planned and that frustrated me. 

The situation led to the conversation with my manager. I later took that advice home with me to notice the peace that it brought when I realized how much control I don't have about how someone feels about me. How that person felt was their decision to stick with, I can't change that person's feelings. I felt I could at least get understanding, but sometimes that doesn't even work. Has this ever happened to you? Have you ever wanted someone to just understand you? Or depending on the situation, you wanted them to at least understand where you are coming from? And did you notice the peace that you've lost trying to get understanding?

In order for me to maintain my peace, I had to understand that not everyone will get me nor will they care neither. And that's okay. I couldn't make this person understand me even if I tried to convince this person a thousand times. Would that person take advantage of the situation and truly listen or only care about how they're feeling in the moment and don't care to change it? Whatever they decide shouldn't affect you. I let what I couldn't control affect me. But I love how God gives us greater revelations as to how to maintain our peace in understanding that he takes care of everything. Even our smallest situations that we may feel God brushes off. Nope. He takes care of that too. He gives you peace too about other circumstances you may have tried to take control over as well. He allowed this situation to happen to remind me that he's still in control and that the only person that really understands us is him. And he's the only one that will fully understand you. 

You are unique in your own special way and that keeps peace running through your veins when you accept that you're God's child who has no control of the things we know God can only do. We know that peace runs through our veins when we let God have all of our situations. When we accept that everyone isn't meant to be in our lives the way we intend certain people to, for that we can give God praise for revealing who isn't there for us. Whatever it is in your life, I pray that you give it to him to maintain the peace that he gives to you.

You deserve to be at peace and I pray these few ways helped you be mindful of how to maintain your peace. Sure, you may have other ways too that helps you to maintain your peace, go for that. Never allow anyone or anything take away your peace. I was at my breaking point and was tired of my peace always being disturbed by something unexpected and small. But even when it'll still happen, I can fight back, protecting my peace the best way I can possible. Let us maintain our peace. In Jesus Name' Amen.  

Friday, June 15, 2018

The "What about me?" Spirit.

Have you ever had the "What about me?" spirit? This spirit is known for its impatience, it's lack of focus, and comparing ways. This spirit makes you feel like you're forgotten and lets you believe that there is nothing truly amazing nor purposeful about you. This spirit will have you questioning God nonstop, and prepares you to turn your back on him. But who said this spirit can have authority to do all of these things? Especially as a woman of God. Who said that this spirit can achieve all that it was designed to accomplish? To be honest? We ourselves have fallen for this lie. But be not dismay, we can fight back this ungodly spirit.
There are 3 things I mentioned above that says what the spirit was known for. Let's go through those 3 ways to help you better understand and recognize that spirit to then proceed in fighting back this spirit.

1. Impatience.

When scrolling through Social Media, if you see stories of someone's blessings all down your timeline, bitterness will take root and later will be shot towards God. You'll get impatience with God because you feel like he is moving faster in somebody else's life than yours. You'll wonder where he has been all this time. It becomes a heart condition when impatience takes it opportunity to plant. Satan is ready to get you impatient with God, because he knows how valuable your purpose is. So, he will make you question God over and over again when it seems your time with him and obeidence to him lacks provision for what's next. But who said it lacked provision? Could it be delayed for the purposes of God's protection? Could it not be the right timing? When did God ever say that he will not complete what he started in you? What made you so impatient?

If I can be honest, I too, had a season of impatience. I was almost a year into growing in my relationship with Christ, and he had just revealed some amazing things that involved purpose to me, and I got so excited that I assumed that God was ready to launch everything right away.  I felt that I knew what, when, where, and how to do it. Without being still to listen to the Holy Spirit say "slow down, my daughter. You're not quite ready yet." I eventually ran into a "What about me?" Spirit. I saw all my other singer/songwriter colleagues gigging, EP's being released, etc and I looked at where I was currently, and started to asked "Well, why isn't any doors opening for me? What about me? I thought you said that you had great plans for me." I feel the same way about ministry, I believed God called me to ministry and I felt like things weren't going the way I thought they would be. It wasn't until later, I realized that I was operating in the "I want everything right now" spirit too. I needed the wisdom to help me understand that when you're in the will of God, he works on his timing because he loves you. He knows that the timing you try to put on him will be detrimental to your purpose. See, if God was to grant every promise to us early,  we would crash at the thought of trying to take care of everything at one time. We would've been prematurely operating in our purposes. God takes his precious time developing you for a reason, and when we can't seem to grasp that, we wonder where he is and what he is doing, when in reality, he's being a good father and preparing you. You just can't see nor believe it, because your heart has drifted away from God due to impatience.

So sis, if you're struggling with patience, I want to remind you that God is never slow with his promises. He knows exactly what he is doing and I know it may seem frustrating at times but I want to encourage you to stay the course with God. Watching other people's lives will only cause more damage to your spirit and lack of belief in God. God designed you to be you. Your purpose is yours. No one else can steal that from you, but as you know, the enemy is here to steal, kill, and destroy. So  "impatience" is one of his tactics to use. Don't let him plant that bad seed inside of you; We bind impatience in the name of Jesus. Always remember, 

"Blessed is she who believed that the Lord would fulfill his promises to her." - Luke 1:45 

2. Lack of Focus. 

When your purpose has so much value, name one of the enemy's most powerful tactics? "YOUR FOCUS." He tries steals the focus of God's people because he knows that when you're focus, you're the most powerful. You can defeat him. You can cast him and his little demons out. He will have no authority over your life nor purpose. So, the enemy throws millions of distractions your way. He creates roadblocks that may seem like you should just turn around and go back. Go back to the life you use to live. Go back to your old ways of living. Go back to those old bad habits. But who is he? How can we let him take our focus like this? Sure. We're human. We get distracted sometimes, but we have the power through Jesus Christ to resist that temptation. The "What about me?" spirit will reinforce your lack of focus. Always wondering "what about me?" will take your focus off of Christ and onto everything else around you.

Honey, God has been putting the emphasis on Social Media since I've started writing this blog. And the reason being is because we tend to lose focus the most by what we see on social media. If social media has become a place for you to gather all the information of someone else and feel bitter about it? Then honey, it's time for you to take a break. It's robbing you of your focus on God. You can't control what anyone puts on social media, but you can guard your heart. You can take that break until you're content with where God has you in this season AND are confident that God is working on your behalf even when you can't see the provision right now. Satan is crafty with how he wants to distract you. 

It can be that man you're with that deep down in your heart you know isn't God's best for you, the latest trend, gossip about celebrities, etc. It can be anything that has your mind wrapped around it. 

So, as you continue to grow in Christ and operate in what he has called you to do, know that the attacks of your focus will happen but also know that you have the authority to fight back. I too, had a hard time fighting back distractions. I felt that once i'm distracted, it's hard to get back focus. I'll be in it and next thing I know, my attention is somewhere else. Satan knows your weaknesses that involves your focus. If you read my previous blog post, I talked about Michael Jackson. I get easily distracted about Michael Jackson because i'm such an enthusiast of him. Do I need self-control? Absolutely. When it comes to the will of God, there is some disciplines we must grow into even when its the toughest to do, but God's word can testify...

"No discipline is enjoyable while it is happening—it’s painful! But afterward there will be a peaceful harvest of right living for those who are trained in this way." - Hebrews 12:11

We bind a lack of focus in the name of Jesus. We're so powerful; words can't describe. Through Jesus Christ, we're more than conquerors. Those distractions will not take the place of progression in our walk with Christ and identifying purpose. 

3. Comparison. 

The "What about me?" spirit is rooted off of comparison. We look at other people's lives all day through social media and subconsciously make comparisons from where we are. "What is it that she has that I don't have?" "She has more than I do." "She must be really blessed to have what she has." And many more.... But all of those thoughts? Are deadly to your lane, purpose, and identity. Let's all admit that we stare too long on someone's page and plant those "Wow.. She must this or that.. or how this or that.." And little do we know, it is planting those seeds of comparison. It shows us our hearts and where we stand with God. How convicting?! That jealous spirit doesn't belong to God. Because we all play a part in the body of Christ, our calling is much as significant as the person you're comparing yourself to. This all connects to "its lack of focus" and "impatience" ...

Your focus is on the fact that this person has what she has and is doing what she is doing and it looks good to you. But let me encourage you sister to start discerning. Discern who you're coveting under, because not everyone may be following Christ and may be gaining her success from a worldly perspective. 

Your impatience is on the fact that this person has what you want to happen for yourself. Which is those "abundant blessings", but that relates also to being careful who you're coveting under. And can I be honest with you? You're living in abundant blessings. God has his sweet hand on you. Jesus Christ died for you. There are so many abundant blessings that we take for granted, the little ones that don't seem to matter huh? Well, I challenge you to sit quietly before the Lord and really look at where you are and be grateful for what he has done. Count every little blessing. It will change the position of your heart, and you'll grow to be more gracious to the Lord. 

As self-explanatory as it can get, know that comparison kills. Let us not compare our lives to anyone else anymore. Let's stay in our lanes and love, serve, and honor God where we are. I heard from a wise woman of God that "You don't know what that person sacrificed to be where they are today." It may be a Christian Woman that you follow and somehow you still compare yourself to them. Well, always remember that her sacrifices for the Lord got her where she is today to inspire you. For that person to make you feel like she's your very own mentor is exactly why staying in your lane is important because you too, may be someone's answered prayer. Let's stop this comparison. Let's pray for patience. Let's get back focus. 

"Pay careful attention to your own work, for then you will get the satisfaction of a job well done, and you won’t need to compare yourself to anyone else. For we are each responsible for our own conduct." - Galatians 6:4-5

Wednesday, March 21, 2018

Withhold Nothing.

As children of God, if we could all be transparent, there is always something that we withhold from God. We may not like to admit it. But I believe that God takes us in uncomfortable spaces to reveal what has replaced him. Unfortunately, the very things we love so much are hard to give to God. Could it be out of fear? Could it be because you're not ready? Could it be that you don't trust him nor have faith? We know that because he is God, at times, he will ask us to do things that won't make sense, that will cost you everything you love, even if it is the only thing you have. But would you abort his command due to your uncertainty? Would you rather be disobedient because you can't see the full picture? What has God asked you to give to him that you are having a hard time surrendering?

In Part I, I begin to share my testimony, and how God changed my perspective once I truly gave what I withheld from him. And I chose this specific space, in my personal life, to talk about out of obedience to God because it was simply my strongest one. I pray that you be blessed and know that you are not alone.


I am a die-hard Michael Jackson fan. For quite some time, in the process of growing in my relationship with God, I had been feeling a huge tug on my heart that left my spirit uneasy, to the point where I needed to seek God for wisdom and discernment because I did not understand it, I knew that God had no problem with me being a fan, but I wanted to go deeper about those feelings. Whenever I would watch or listen to him, afterwards and sometimes during I would feel uneasy again. Now, I'm not just any fan. (or should I say basic) I'm a Moonwalker. (Moonwalkers is the name of his fan club, for those who are not aware!) and so I guess you can call that a Michael Jackson Enthusiast (lol), where I find enjoyment in doing research about his life and successful music career, downloading unreleased songs and finding new concert footage that I haven't seen before, there is a lot to that man that keeps me constantly excited. As a singer/songwriter myself, I take notes. He's just my favorite artist, ever. But while all of that is great, there is still an uneasy feeling on the inside and as we all know, God's timing is perfect. 

Sidenote: When you ask God specific questions that are left unanswered, be not dismay, trust that his timing is perfect, and at just the right time, he will answer you with more insight and wisdom, that you probably could not have handled before. Praise him during unanswered questions. 

So, one day, in my quiet time with the Lord, I mentioned to him about those feelings, and it was then the Lord brought to my attention that those feelings were an indication that he was prompting me to give Michael Jackson to him. Me, convicted, mentally did but my heart didn't. So guess what that sounds like? Yep. You guess it. I withheld Michael Jackson from God. Realizing that I had subconsciously made that decision, I proceeded in what I wanted to do, only prolonging what I really wanted. I wanted to really feel God, feel his love, security, and just simply his presence. But whenever I would spend time, it always felt like something was blocking in the middle of trying to be intimate. It was then, I knew what the problem was. Until finally, I surrender. I invited God openly into every space of my life, even the areas I felt I had maybe closed out from him. When I opened myself to him, I decided to truly take a break from Michael Jackson. IN FAITH.

The reason why I said "In Faith" is because I did not think it was possible. I immediately had thoughts of failure. But if you are paying attention, notice how I said "I did not think it was possible" Could that be an indication that I had a stronghold? Could that mean that I was not really ready to let that go because I loved it so much? Due to my uncertainty as to how God was going to deal with it, I was afraid. I had these "false" results in mind that I assumed would come true. I thought God would remove Michael from my life, I would be hard on myself, trying to remove it as if I had enough power to do so,  still going around the shocking true that I really cared about that portion of my life and how it would end up.

But God.... During my break, I read a devotional about Idolatry, and he was talking about different types of Idols. When I came across the "Physical Idol", he said something that immediately gave me confirmation on my spirit. He says.....

"What kind of posters do you have in your bedroom? It is not wrong to celebrate the accomplishments of others. You may really like a certain sports star or entertainer—and that is not necessarily wrong. However, has your mind become filled with their abilities more than it is focused on God?" - (David Peach) (whatchristianswanttoknow.com)

When I read that, I begin to pray, and he told me, "Daughter, My problem is not with you being a fan, my problem is that you have filled yourself up with his abilities, talents, and gifts that has been distracting you from me. How can I fill you with my love when someone else has filled that space in your heart? Someone else's gifts have captured most of your attention." Jesus! I would not have known any of that if I did not take that break. And if we are not careful, we could be deceived in believing that it is okay, not paying attention to our intake. It amazing what happens when you surrender, because when you do, God may now tell you what he thinks verses how you thought, because you simply were obedient to him.

I realized that the abilities Michael Jackson was gifted with became the reason for my strong attachment to him. I admired everything that caused my heart to only see that. It was as if I could not see pass his abilities, that I somehow was lost into them. But through that, I learned balance, to know when to turn it on and off. I learned to not be so hard on myself about anything, but trust in Jesus, and accept that I will always be a huge Michael Jackson fan and that I can't take away what I believe is there for a reason. God knew that was my guy, before I knew that was my guy. (lol) How much intake of him is what's more important. It can't be more intake of him and less of Jesus. Point being is that, God knew I would like the certain things I like and love what I love, and that's okay to say that, but boundaries are very necessary. One of the others things the Holy Spirit said was... "Don't be so hard on yourself, but check yourself."

If that person or thing easily consumes and distracts you from God, and you know it? You gotta check yourself. If you have to physically snap your finger and say, "HEY! Watch it." to get ahold of yourself, do that. We bind that Spirit of Idolatry. 

So as of today, I begin to check myself, to guard my heart, to not allow anything to distract me from my Father, to ask the Holy Spirit to alert me if I get carried away, always be aware of my intake, and to always trust God with every aspect of my life, for by faith, we know that he is always at work. 

What have you filled yourself up with that you did not realize it was rooting on the inside of your heart? That it distracted you from God? I pray against the spirit of Idolatry, for we will not allow any person nor thing to take root in place of God. For God, we know that you're a Jealous God, and we honor your sincere love for us and desiring to have more of us. 

Always remember, God does not have a problem with who your favorite entertainer is, what kind of sports, cars, makeup, whatever you may love or like, he just wants you to be careful into not allowing it to take root into your heart that will cause that person or thing to be placed before him. 

Prayer: Father, I pray that we are through competing with you with other gods in our lives. I pray that we submit our hearts over to you, and to step out on faith on the things that seems impossible to do, for we know that it is impossible to please you without faith. Help us God, to trust you as you work within us, we repent corporately. You're God alone. Our sweet Alpha and Omega. Thank you for the wisdom. Thank you for the Holy Spirit that you instilled in us, to help guide and lead us, to help teach us, to correct us in our wrongdoings, and even reveal deep roots that you desire to get your hands on. Thank you Jesus for Salvation. For we know that because you have overcome the world, we will take heart, trust that we are healed, and believe that because of you, God accepts us into his kingdom. I speak freedom from Idolatry. 

In Jesus Name' Amen. 

"You must not have any other god but me. 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. I lay the sins of the parents upon their children; the entire family is affected—even children in the third and fourth generations of those who reject me. But I lavish unfailing love for a thousand generations on those who love me and obey my commands."
Exodus 20:3-6 NLT

Thursday, March 15, 2018

What happens if I don't read the Bible?

"All Scripture is inspired by God and is useful to teach us what is true and to make us realize what is wrong in our lives. It corrects us when we are wrong and teaches us to do what is right." 2 Timothy 3:16 NLT

Because the bible is what transforms us into Christ's image, helps us understand, believe, and live the truth. What would happen if we did not pick up the bible at all? Could we still be that bold woman of God? Does adding a 15 to 30 minute read of the bible conflicts with your busy schedule? I get that. Some of us maybe want to add reading the bible to their daily routine but can't seem to find the time to squeeze it in. Well today, I want to talk to you all about what happens when you don't read the bible, how important it is to read the bible, and how to not stress yourself out with trying to add reading the bible to your daily schedule. God is with you honey. Let's Begin. 

"What happens if I don't read the Bible?"

1. You will never know who God really is. 

In this life, you will hear many perceptions as to who God is to someone, some stories may come from a place of inspiration and some may come from a place of hurt or anger that they have towards him. If you are unaware of who God is to you, you will begin to believe what others will have to say about him. For example, if someone says that "God is in control of everything." and have experienced a major tragedy in their life, they may believe that because God is in control, he is the reason for several tragedies that have occurred in their life. If you have not done so, I encourage you to watch the movie "The Shack".

To paraphrase, "The Shack" is about a man who blames God for the tragic lost of his youngest daughter. He and his three children went on a camping trip and his youngest daughter went missing  to later find out that she was murdered. That left him heartbroken, giving him the option to blame himself and even God. The highlights of that movie was him meeting with God, Jesus, and the Holy Spirit. During his stay, he confesses to God how angry he was for letting his little girl die and later throughout the movie, in the midst of his confessions,  "Wisdom" said to him, "The work of evil isn't God's doing." As I will stop there. If you would like to know/see further details about this amazing movie, I highly recommend that you watch it. It is heart-warming to see God's love and who he is visually.

The saying "The work of evil isn't God doing" gave me the understanding that regardless of what happens tragically to someone we love or even what we see on the news, God still remains good. What do I mean? I mean, that when a tragedy happens, God still has a plan, for all things work together for our good. He uses everything for our good. And that's one of the major keys to knowing who God is, is knowing that he is good at all times, never wanting us to think that he is not in grief amongst those who have been tragically taken away from you. For he griefs with you out of his love for you, wanting to heal you, and let you know that he feels what you feel, that he has never left you. 

With knowing God, you have to come from a place of you figuring out for yourself who God is and what his son Jesus Christ has done for you. That's where reading the bible comes in. Through the bible, you will read numerous stories that will show you how mighty, powerful, and faithful God is. You will learn to know who Jesus Christ is and why he sent his son to die on the cross for you. You will begin to see the pure truth as to why God loves you so much, for God's love runs so deep that it is indescribable. For God is larger than life, and he desires for to be secure in his love. For starters, here are a few scriptures to help you know who God is.

“For this is how God loved the world: He gave his one and only Son, so that everyone who believes in him will not perish but have eternal life. - John 3:16 NLT

But you, O Lord, are a God of compassion and mercy, slow to get angry and filled with unfailing love and faithfulness. - Psalm 86:15 NLT

Understand, therefore, that the Lord your God is indeed God. He is the faithful God who keeps his covenant for a thousand generations and lavishes his unfailing love on those who love him and obey his commands. - Deuteronomy 7:9 NLT 

For the Lord your God is living among you. He is a mighty savior. He will take delight in you with gladness. With his love, he will calm all your fears. He will rejoice over you with joyful songs.” - Zephaniah 3:17 NLT

2. You will never know who you are in Christ. 

Identity crisis is real, its tough to walk around pretending to be someone that you are not, and trying to maintain that mask when it grows old. You overwhelm yourself trying to keep up with society, because society is never satisfied with anything. It stays thirsty for more. Once something new comes out, it will be waiting for the next thing. It's like its never really fulfilled with what it has. And if we can pause there parenthetically, how many of us can say we are not fulfilled within? That we truly don't know who we were destined to be. Well, I can encourage you in saying that in reading the bible, it will help prune off bad fruits, and produce good fruits. (Matthew 7:18), it will enlighten you with how God loves his daughters and what is precious to him about a woman. And in that process, you will begin to feel the shift into the image of Christ, really knowing who you are and whose you are. 

Christ is the perfect example of who we are to be like, he has made the way for us to be reconcile with God to grow into an relationship with him, so why not, read now, to be expose to all God has for you, and get a view of how God sees you. Rather you believe it or not, it is a beautiful experience, rather challenging, for the sake of God's removal of what is not like him that may be in you. The way God has designed you is just awesome that can't be explained into words, Christ lives within you and desires to shine his light through you wherever you go. Here are a few scriptures that can help you be encouraged with the process of knowing who you are in Christ. 

"She is clothed in strength and dignity and she laughs without fear of the future." - Proverbs 31:25

"She is energetic and strong, a hard worker." - Proverbs 31:17 

For we are God’s masterpiece. He has created us anew in Christ Jesus, so we can do the good things he planned for us long ago. - Ephesians 2:10 NLT.

But you are not like that, for you are a chosen people. You are royal priests, a holy nation, God’s very own possession. As a result, you can show others the goodness of God, for he called you out of the darkness into his wonderful light. - 1 Peter 2:9 NLT 

Dear friends, now we are children of God, and what we will be has not yet been made known. But we know that when Christ appears, we shall be like him, for we shall see him as he is. - 1 John 3:2 NLT

3. You will never really know how to fight back the enemy. 

When you know who God is for you and know who you are in Christ, be mindful that the enemy will come to attack. He will attack your faith and identity, he will make sure that you stumble some way some how. But how can we resist him? How must we really know how to fight back in times of attacks? The Word of God. God's Word is the only thing that can defeat the enemy, even when the enemy quotes scripture, we are able to rely on Christ's strength and not allow him to run over our lives. Our lives are always being watched by the enemy, he hates the idea of us living for God, he does not like that we have turned from our worldly wicked ways to now knowing our identity, he is angry. But who cares? You have the ability to fight back with what God put in you. Know that God is on your side, fighting your battles, easily knocking Satan off of his traps. 

The Word prepares you for the attack, it gives you the power to speak against that demon. To rebuke anything that Satan tries to destroy or take away from you. I want you to take a moment to remember the things that have been stolen from you, that you know the enemy took from you, and you are tired of him having a field day with your mind, heart, and soul. He's trying to give you reasons to stop trusting God to restore. If you feel like you have fail some attacks, I want to encourage you to pick back up your sword of armor and fight back the next time he shows up. You're strong. Give him a piece of who you are with Christ standing next to you, ready to help you in battle. Let him know that you are the head and not the tail. You are above and never beneath. You are a Child of God. 

But to only get to that stage, we must first read his word, meditate on it, and prepare for battle. God will always send test and trials for the benefit of strengthen your faith. God sees you as strong and mighty, and even when we can't see it yet, he is patience enough to walk us through that journey of realizing just how strong and mighty we really are in him. Once the Word is implanted into our hearts, we are set to never be fearful during a battle again. Sometimes, we may be weaken, but we don't always have to stay there. We know where we can gather our armor and prepare for battle.
 Here are a few scriptures on how to prepare for the attack of the enemy. 

But in that coming day,  no weapon turned against you will succeed. You will silence every voice raised up to accuse you.These benefits are enjoyed by the servants of the Lordtheir vindication will come from me. I, the Lord, have spoken! - Isaiah 54:17 NLT 

 A final word: Be strong in the Lord and in his mighty power. Put on all of God’s armor so that you will be able to stand firm against all strategies of the devil. For we are not fighting against flesh-and-blood enemies, but against evil rulers and authorities of the unseen world, against mighty powers in this dark world, and against evil spirits in the heavenly places. - Ephesians 6:10-12

Therefore, put on every piece of God’s armor so you will be able to resist the enemy in the time of evil. Then after the battle you will still be standing firm.14 Stand your ground, putting on the belt of truth and the body armor of God’s righteousness. - Ephesians 6:13-14

Stay alert! Watch out for your great enemy, the devil. He prowls around like a roaring lion, looking for someone to devour. Stand firm against him, and be strong in your faith. Remember that your family of believers all over the world is going through the same kind of suffering you are. - 1 Peter 5:8-9 NLT

For those who are wanting to read more of the bible:

I get it honey, your schedule is hectic. But you really do desire to spend time with God and reading his word. One thing I would encourage you to do is take some time to sit and write out your entire schedule, and examine it honesty. See if there is room to have quiet time, for God honors every minute that you give him, as long as it is intentional. Your long for more of God is not overlooked, he is honored and is making a way for you right now by opening up more of your schedule to spend time with him. The greatest thing for you to do is be in constant prayer even when you know it is hard to have that quiet time. Rather that be you going to the bathroom to pray for a few minutes or in your car. God is with you everywhere you go and hears you as you speak to him. Always remember that "You make time for who you love." 

For those who don't have much of a overbooked schedule, be grateful for the little time God has given you, and dive into his word, pray, growing deeper into your relationship with him. Every minute counts, especially with God. We learn to value breaks, because when you are having a bad day, that break is the time to talk to God in needing his strength to finish the rest of the day. One moment with God can change your whole day.

 For those who may have a lot of time on their hands, definitely use that time God has given you too. Instead of feeling discouraged during whatever you may be waiting on God for, stir yourself up in the Holy Spirit, reading his word to keep yourself encouraged in his promises, and of course growing in him and with him, so that when God sends you out, you will be prepare to face life that lies in front of you. No matter what, be encouraged to know that the bible will always be accessible to you, as God lives through his powerful word. 

For the word of God is alive and powerful. It is sharper than the sharpest two-edged sword, cutting between soul and spirit, between joint and marrow. It exposes our innermost thoughts and desires. Hebrews 4:12 NLT

Friday, January 26, 2018

wordless groans

"In the same way, the Spirit helps us in our weakness. We do not know what we ought to pray for, but the Spirit himself intercedes for us through wordless groans." - Romans 8:26 NIV

Has your circumstances ever been so tough on you that when you go to God to pray, you're left speechless? You can't describe the way you're feeling and all you're left with in that moment is your tears? Have you ever felt like you couldn't pray or talk to God the way you wanted to and it discouraged you? As if you thought that God could only hear you one-way, which is from your voice? 

"Wordless Groans" are so profound to God and some of us may feel that it is a hinderance because we think talking "all the time" is the way for God to clearly hear us. Our minds are stuck on a one-way communication. Because he is God, his way of hearing us is far beyond our knowledge of how we think he is suppose to hear us. God hears your thoughts, your heart, and even your tears are words to him. You are in a place where God completely understands you when you are restrained to pour out your heart to him. You are in the same place I was in too, honey. 

I can recall quiet times I would have with the Lord and it would bother me when I was not able to talk to him the way I wanted to, my circumstances was so heavy on my heart that I didn't know where to begin, so that I could start to cast all my cares and worries onto him. I got discouraged but immediately God reminded me that the Holy Spirit intercedes on our behalf when we don't know what to pray for. We are weak, but he is strong. We are lost, but we found ourselves in him. 

I praised God, with tears in my eyes, for knowing that you don't have to always verbally speak for him to understand you, for him to work on your behalf, and for him to be with you. Because he will never leave nor forsake you, know that he will never misunderstand you. He created you. Everything you're going through was pre-planned and already recorded in his books before you were born. (Psalm 139:16)

The best way to pour your heart out to God when words fail is to write them out. Journaling is a way to connect with God deeper than you could imagine. When longing for God's voice, God wants us to open our minds about how we can hear him and how he can hear us. Writing out your prayers is enough for God to answer them. You may wonder, "Okay God, I wrote out my prayers to you, how do I know that you heard them?." Honey, God is faithful to hear whatever you direct to him, if your mind and heart is intentionally set on to talk to him, that catches his attention. You always got his attention, he always desires to speak to you and wants to help you. 

Your circumstances are a "brush off the shoulder" "piece of cake" to God. So when you write out your prayers, believe that he heard you, learn to trust God with his timing with answering them. I knew that since "God takes care of everything I have no control over" why would I constantly meditate on my circumstances? The enemy thinks he is clever with making you believe that God can't hear you. Liar. You can sit here right now, reading this, and know that your thoughts are heard by the Lord. 

Never get discouraged if you try to talk to him and it isn't working, it's okay, Thank God for his Holy Spirit interceding for you. Thank him for being the Father that cares for you and everything that hurts, bothers, and overwhelms you. God wants you to believe that he can hear you. To sit there in silence, waiting expectantly, is enough for God to hear your heart clearly calling out to him. 

The next time, you're restrained to speak, be at peace with knowing that God still hears you either way. Right now, you may be unable to speak, it's okay, trust that you will be able to one day and your words will be flowing nonstop, but until then, still sit in his presence and rest gently. God is so perfect in all of his ways, and always remember that God hears more than you can imagine. 

Thursday, January 4, 2018

Broken: On the Inside

Are you letting your outward beauty cover for your inner character? 

"Don't be concerned about the outward beauty of fancy hairstyles, expensive jewelry, or beautiful clothes. You should clothe yourself instead with the beauty that comes from within, the unfading beauty of a gentle and quiet spirit, which is so precious to God." 1 Peter 3:3 NLT 

Our outward beauty is the norm to cover for our inner character, it is the dismissal to our inner struggles that eventually pro-longs us really getting to know who we truly are within. 
Where am I going with this? Let's tackle some things first. 

1.  The use of make-up. As women, we love make-up, it enhances our beauty, (for it is its job to do so) it makes us feel just as confident as we should be without it. But please understand that make-up was never designed to be a void-filler. It simply cannot, and will not take the place that only Jesus Christ was destined to do. I get it, you're ashamed to see the truth, admit the struggles, yes, you hate that your attitude isn't as pretty as your make-up, but you have to face that reality. You have to admit that you've been hiding from yourself and from God. If you ever dreaded putting on make-up base on the feelings inside of you, that's the Holy Spirit, encouraging you to no longer ignore that. Listen. 
If you use make-up to make up feel confident because naturally you don't, feel wanted, or to fulfill a specific intention that surely isn't God's best for you? I encourage you to: 

  • Fast from make-up. Put it in another room, so that you won't be tempted to wear any. 
  • Spend time in God's word, allowing him to reassure you where your true beauty comes from. 
  • Take some time to learn how to embrace your natural looks, encouraging yourself in the mirror, saying things like "You're beautiful!" "You don't need make-up to make you feel beautiful!" 

2. Clothing. As women, we love to look a certain way, and most times we would wear specific clothing that would boost our confidence, and set the mood for that day. Don't get me wrong, it is not a problem looking fabulous when you want to, especially if you're a confident women who know who you are and whose you are. But here's the problem. If you've ever dressed a certain way for the attention of a boy? Or from friends who has peer pressured you? Then, there is something on the inside that God wants heal and help reassure you with too. In 1 Timothy 3:9-10, it states "And I want women to be modest in their appearance. They should wear decent and appropriate clothing and not draw attention to themselves by the way they fix their hair or by wearing gold or pearls or expensive clothes. For women who claim to be devoted to God should make themselves attractive by the good things they do."  God's definition of his daughter's appearances is modesty. We cannot easily lose sight of God's well pleased appearance of us by trying to keep our closet tight and up-to-date for the intentions to please someone other than him. Sis, you do not have to uncover yourself for men who God didn't even want you to make it pass "hello" with. You do not have to feel peer pressure to buy expensive clothing to blend in. You are just fine honey, and I pray you're okay with it. If not:

  •  Ask God to help heal your heart from depression of trying to over-dress to impress. 
  • Ask God to help you start honoring him with your body, dressing in a way that is pleasing to him and not caring what others may think or feel. 
  • Ask God to give you wisdom, helping you clean out your closet, getting rid of clothes that were a distracting and attracting men that God didn't send. (sidenote: Be encouraged to know that the man God has for you won't lust after your appearance, but will be attracted by the things you do as you're devoted to God, he will see fruit that helps him to seek forth marriage with you because of the God in you." (For women who claim to be devoted to God should make themselves attractive by the good things they do")
  • Your body is the temple of the Holy Spirit and because you're a Daughter of the King, I pray that you no longer seek for attention nor approval from anyone. 

So, back to my question: Are you letting your outward beauty cover for your inner character? 

 All materialistic things such as make-up, jewelry and even our clothes and shoes has become our main focus because we just don't want to face the reality of our "Broken: On the Inside." Is it because we've got so accustomed to the latest of what the world has to offer? I've learned that the more we are influenced by the world's expectations, the more we seek to be immune to the system, totally abandoning our inner character. Our inner character is far more important to God than our outward appearance. Yes, God gives us specific instructions on how to honor him with our appearance (as previously stated before) but God is looking at your heart. He works from the inside out, not the other way around. He sees that your heart is broken, and you're constantly dismissing your brokenness. He doesn't want to leave you in that position, but the more we lack in being transparent with him, the more we pro-long Jesus interceding for our healing. I promise you, everything on the outside will follow as is, because of what's on the inside. Your inner character is so important to him because it reflects your outward appearance. Beautiful appearances doesn't cure bad attitudes. What's on the inside of you will show, clear as day. 

God is in the business of working on his children always, especially if they are called according to his purpose. When he desires to show you who you truly are in Christ, he first exposes who you tried to be. And as he shows you that, be transparent enough to admit that those were your heart's intentions. Now God has something to work with, and is willing to show you your true inner character as it then, will reflect your outward appearance.  If you're in this position, be encouraged because that is the work of the Lord, doing some major surgery that is all for your good. 

So today, I pray for you. I pray that you ask God to give you the wisdom and the ability to discern who you've tried to be verse who God has called you to be, that you let God heal you in areas that you daily dismiss, that you are reminded that who you truly are comes from within, and that you no longer carry that brokenness that only Jesus can heal. Trust God for your inner and outward. 

Saturday, October 21, 2017

Knowing HIM for you.

"For myself, I want to know you." 

Is it difficult finding him for you? On the regular, you listen to people express their love for/the goodness of God, and as they go on, you're shocked to hear their testimonies and inspired by their transparency, but yet, fail to fully understand who God is for yourself. If we are honest, we struggle to believe his promises and the good he has done in our lives. Why must that be? For yourself, jot down these reminders.

1. For yourself, learn how much God loves you. 

I get it, understanding God's unconditional love takes time even when it is as simple as he made it to be, (hint: Jesus Christ). For (John 3:16)  says "For God loved the world so much that he gave his one and only son, so that everyone who believes in him will not perish but have eternal life." Jesus Christ is the ultimate example of how much God truly loves us. And even when there are many examples of God expressing his love for us, Jesus is the main one that interprets his love of how much we matter to him, for he was the one that paid our debts so that we could be made right with God to now have/build an intimate relationship with him. (2 Corinthians 5:21.) Words can't describe his love, he loved us way before we could ever love him. Let your heart sink into his love. 

2. For yourself, seek him. 

"Many Samaritans from the village believed in Jesus because the woman had said, "He told me everything I ever did! When they came out to see him, they begged him to stay in their village. So he stayed for two days, long enough for many more to hear his message and believe. Then they said to the woman, "Now we believe, not just because of what you told us, but because we have heard him ourselves, now we know that he is indeed the Savior of the world." - John 4:39-42

Such a powerful scripture because it proves that knowing Christ for ourselves is important if we want to get through this thing called life. We may hear about him from others, but in our minds we don't really know who he is until we actually hear him speak to us the same way he spoke to that friend or that family member. Jesus loved to deliver the message that only God instructed him to do. That message is what convinces your heart to believe, to then want to share the same message you've been told. The Samaritan women were phenomenal examples to help us understand that without our own experience we're never fully convinced of how good he is. Get to know the man that is your savior. Let Jesus show you who he really is, for he'll convict but let conviction become your new best friend. God's convictions are great convictions. It's tough to bear but it helps you grow into the person that God has called you to be.  

3. The same God that is good to them, is good to you. 

Do you not believe that God is good to you too? If we are not careful, we'll mistakenly download the comparison game into our hearts and minds. "There is so much good happening in her life, why isn't it happening in mine?" Yes it is sweetheart, you're just too focus on someone else's life to see it. What God is doing for you, is for you. God works in ways where he reminds you of the things that he has brought you from and how you've overcame the hardships. Pay attention to those moments and Thank God because he has really been good. Believe that God can do wonders in your life and never ask him to duplicate another person's life for you, because it surely won't happen. He created you to be different, as I'm sure he did the same for the other person. You must know in your heart that God is writing your story and will fulfill all of his promises for your life. For yourself, know that he is good. For he is perfect in all of his ways. 

For God desires your heart, he sees that you peek around the corner and you'll continue as if he does not see you. You can never hide from a omnipresent God. God understands the position of your heart and your desire for change/understanding of his grace and love. Take that opportunity, God is ready when you are. Know that God is not a God of making everyone the same. He is all about unity, but never creating a person with the exact same DNA, for he created us all uniquely different. We all find out about him in our own way beautifully.  Find what makes you special in him and hold on tight to it. You are special in the eyes of God and God wants you to understand him for you. You've heard enough testimonies that send your heart running to the Father for him to then write yours. With finding him for you, this is a testimony within itself to share. Go in peace, for you now will seek and believe that Jesus in indeed the savior of the world. 
© If I Inspire. Made with love by The Dutch Lady Designs.