Maybe you woke up to a crisis this morning.  Maybe you didn’t sleep well, and you are dreading the day ahead.  Perhaps you are facing illness or death in your family, or suffering through grief.  Perhaps you are dreading your “to do” list and just want to pull the blankets back over your head and shut out this day.  Or it could be that you have been feeling down for a while…inadequate, unimportant, misunderstood, unloved.

Dont let the enemy lie to you !  Don’t let him speak those untruths to your heart that say you cannot make it through whatever your day holds.  Don’t allow him to convince you that you are not loved, appreciated, and so very worthy.

Your trials are not what defines you…how you walk through them is.  As you naviagate through the hurts, the pains, the uncertainties, the fears, and the frustrations…look up to the One who is walking with you.  He is using each moment to mold and shape you.  Nothing is wasted with God, and your testimony is being created through your times of struggle.

And while you hang on, you are getting stronger, and your faith is multiplying.  It is through our deepest struggles and darkest moments that our faith comes alive. Those troubles are temporary…but the enduring faith that comes from them will last a lifetime!

 

 

You Are!

Yes, Ladies…you are that special!  So special that God knows how many hairs you have on your head.  So special that He knows your hopes, dreams, and greatest needs.  So special that He hears you each time you cry out loud or whisper softly to Him.  So special that you are never forgotten.

It’s time to BELIEVE that!  It’s time to embrace your value and claim victory over all that holds you back.  It’s time to RISE UP and REMEMBER just Whose you are!

Make it a beautiful Monday, make it a wonderful week!

Thankful Anyway

My Thanksgiving Day is winding down.  Our bellies are full, but the kids are still talking about s’mores.  Things were different this year, with my kids spread out from home to Texas.  We weren’t all together this year, but I am thankful anyway. Those sweet pieces of my family that I shared this day with made it super special.

 

I’m thankful that those who weren’t with me have special people in their lives who love them and are enjoying them today.  I’m thankful for new traditions that were started this year and the sweet memories of the old ones.  I’m thankful for grandchildren and the joy they bring to my life.  I am thankful for laughter, overeating, and board games.

 

This year, as I ponder all I have to be thankful for, I am most thankful for Jesus, who loves us all so much, and for all the blessings that may go unnoticed throughout the year, but are true evidence of God’s beautiful grace and love.

 

Oh…and one more thing…I am thankful for Christmas, because I will have all my babies under one roof!!  Hallelujah!

 

 

The Common Language of Christ

I love Tuesday mornings. It is my morning that I gather with a group of sisters in Christ and share a devotion, some conversation, and prayer. This morning we were discussing a passage from our devotion that mentioned the common language of Christ. The question was…What does the common language of Christ mean to you?

Immediately my mind went to the recent Leading & Loving It Conference I had attended. This was my 5th year attending this awesome conference and as I have every year, I learned so much from this year’s presentations.

So how does that tie in with the common language of Christ? Well, to me, it goes a little something like this…

We gather, over 900 strong. We represent different cities, states, and even countries. We come from numerous denominations and all have varying roles within our churches and ministries. Some of us are outspoken and a little sassy, while others of us are on the quieter side, doing more watching than participating. Some of us are loud, rambunctious worshippers, while others are mellow in their praises. Each one of us gathered for that two day event heard, thought, and retained something just a little bit different than the sisters sitting on either side of us.

Despite the differences in our personalities, our race, our denominations, and our hometowns and countries of origin, it was so apparent that the common language of Christ was everywhere. I saw it through the hugs, smiles, and laughter. It was evident through the moments of reconnection of friendships made at past events, and new connections that were being made in those very moments. It raised its voice loud and strong through the worship that filled the room with all voices singing in unison. Flowing tears were more evidence of this language, as were the voices of our speakers, speaking into our hearts and souls.

The common language of Christ surrounded us during that conference…showing its many components: friendship, joy, empathy, grace, unity, and connection. And above all of these, the evidence was there…flowing into each and every heart through the most common denominator in the language of Christ…love. Love for Jesus. Love for the opportunity we were experiencing. Love for each other.

Beloved, let us love one another, for love is from God, and whoever loves has been born of God and knows God.… Click To Tweet

Missing the Minutes

Sometimes a song just speaks directly to our heart. I believe God uses music to guide us and get our attention, and that is what happened to me this morning.

I overslept and had to hurry to make it to my morning prayer group. The devotion was about building on a strong foundation and where are the leaks and cracks in your life. I mentioned that I believe the leak in my life is busyness. My calendar actually frightens me sometimes.

So we chatted about being too busy. We discussed prioritizing. We talked about what needs to be weeded out. It was a great conversation. One I have had many times with many people. I will do well for a while, then before I know it, my calendar has filled up again and I am feeling overwhelmed.

As I drove away from prayer group, I turned on my Christian radio. There was Josh Wilson speaking to my heart, reminding me to Dream Small. As I listened with my heart, I felt the truth of the words creep in:

Just don’t miss the minutes on your way to bigger things.”

How many minutes have I missed in my efforts to do it all? How often have I let go of something I  loved to do in order to do something I felt I should do? So often I have allowed the outside world to deceive me into thinking the bigger things are what counts. When in fact it’s the small things, done with great love, that make the biggest impact.

These are the moments that change the world.”

Do you want to be a world changer? Do you want to make a difference for Christ? It’s in the… Click To Tweet

Do you want to be a world changer? Do you want to make a difference for Christ? It’s in the small things that we truly impact others. The small things in our marriage keep us strong as we work together to guide our families and keep our relationship special and important. The small things in our homes guide the steps of our children and leave them with lasting memories and an example to live by. The small things in our community shine the light for others to see.

Of course there’s nothing wrong with bigger dreams.”

We all have dreams. We all have hopes and plans that we would like to see come to pass. And that’s okay. God calls us to live boldly, challenge ourselves to do new things for His kingdom, and step out of our comfort zones. Go for it! Just don’t let it blind you to the small opportunities, the small blessings, the tiny little moments that speak love and life into your families and your community.

Balance is not always easy, but once we achieve it, we receive the extraordinary gift of being able to chase our big dreams while savoring each of the small moments that are more special than we could have ever dreamed possible. So while you are chasing your big dreams, don’t forget to dream small.

Obey, I Say

I have been dealing with a lot of disobedience as of late. I feel like my kids just don’t hear me when I tell them something. My orders don’t seem to get followed. My daughter can’t seem to keep her room clean. And she brings her “mess” with her to every room in the house she enters. My son is a close second in the mess department. And all I’ve been hearing lately is arguing.

It is frustrating. It is irritating. It makes me discouraged and angry. And it is exhausting. After all, mama knows best, right? Why don’t they listen? Am I invisible? All I’m asking for is a little obedience.

And then God whispers to me… “What about you?” Are you listening to Me? Are you cleaning up your “messes”? Am I invisible?

WHOA‼! That will sure get a mama’s attention! When I stop and think of all the areas of disobedience in my own life, is it any wonder that I hear His voice above my own raging thoughts?

Mothers… young and old, frustrated and not frustrated, weary and not weary… hear this:

We must live out obedience in front of our children if we want them to be successful at it. Click To Tweet

We are their guide and compass on how to live a life that honors and obeys the Lord. What are they learning from you? Is it humbleness, compassion, and grace? Or are they getting a big lesson on pride, arrogance, and disobedience?

I have chosen the way of faithfulness; I set your rules before me. (Psalm 119:30)

I want my children to remember my rules. I have chosen those rules and I want them to follow each one. God has chosen rules for each of us. He wants us to walk out our lives in obedience so that we may receive the fruits of our faithfulness. Are you hungry for the fruit?

My kids have been walking in defiance lately. But so have I. I have chosen to put one foot in front of the other, step after step, even when I knew it was not in line with God’s plan for my life.

If you are willing and obedient, you shall eat the good of the land; (Isaiah 1:19)

I don’t know about you, but the good of the land sounds pretty awesome to me! I’m ready to walk in obedience, and receive the bounty for doing so. And hopefully, through my actions, my children will see the joy and blessings that come from a life of obedience. That is my prayer. I know that is your prayer as well.

May God bless us each as we strive to obey His word and His will for our lives.

Just Be Held

I heard these words to a favorite song today as I was hurrying from one place to another, using my lunchtime for errands instead of eating:

The world’s not falling apart, it’s falling into place. I’m on the throne, stop holding on and just be held.

Do you ever have times when it feels like the world is just falling apart right at your feet? You thought you were set upon solid ground only to find out the sand is sinking? Life can be hard, ladies… marriage, motherhood, family relationships, career difficulties, friendships that aren’t what you thought they were…it can all be overwhelming sometimes.  Often it seems like everything is crumbling around us,and we are hanging on for dear life!

My sisters, it’s okay to let go. It’s okay to relax that grip you have on your troubles and let God take the reigns. It’s okay to let him wrap his arms around you and hold you through the storm. I have this specific memory of my childhood where it was storming outside, the night was dark and loud with the roar of thunder. I was just a little girl, but my daddy picked me up and held me. And I was no longer afraid.

That is the comfort we get from our Father in heaven. That ability to take our fears to him and have him pick us up into his loving arms and carry us through the storm. So whatever is going on in your life, whatever is falling apart around you, let go and give it to God. He will hold you tight and carry you to the end of the storm, then set you back upon dry land.

And remember, sometimes when we think things are falling apart, they really are just falling into place. They are lining up according to the will of God and his plan for our lives. While it might not be what you wanted or expected, you can rest assured that when God is in control, it will be for your good.