11.30.2011

My God never will... change!

I like change. A lot. For instance, I got my hair cut yesterday and it's a pretty nice change. (Yeah I just wanted to share I got a haircut ;) )

I get a thrill from change. I thrive from change. Only if it's good though. Bad change... I don't like that so much.

I like making new friends. I don't like losing them.

I like going to a new place. I don't like leaving.

I like experiencing and trying new things (that are right). I don't like getting hurt.

Those are just a few of my 'good change', 'bad change' comparisons.

This year has had a lot of change for me. Both good and 'bad' (really it wasn't all too bad because God worked it all together for my good *Romans 828*). I got to deal with the loss of a family member and one that might as well have been in my family. I got my first boyfriend. I got my first heartbreak. I experienced true, lasting grace for the first time (JESUS!). I have learned a lot in regards to change and I thank God for that.

However much I may like change though, when a huge wave comes crashing down on me, I need stability. When I'm broken and on the floor I need Someone to hold me and say it's gonna be okay and mean it. That stability is the Lord. He doesn't change. When I do, He doesn't. That's awesome!! I'm so thankful!

"Jesus Christ is the same yesterday, today, and forever." - Hebrews 13:8

The same yesterday, today, and forever. Wow. That means His love, grace, forgiveness, heart, who He is, NEVER changes. So when you're doing through life change, He isn't and never will.

Remember today that no matter what you're going through God is going to be there with you to take you through it. Always and forever. Love y'all! :)

Praying for Your Future Husband {Book Review}

I have been reading Praying for Your Future Husband by Robin Gunn and Tricia Goyer.

I have enjoyed reading it. The book is filled with stories from both Tricia and Robin about how they started praying for their future husband, when they met him, and how praying for him had helped and continues to. You will not feel like you're just reading "another one of those books" that's trying to "self help" you get where you want to go and deal with something that needs to be dealt with.

I have this book to be very helpful. It's filled with prayers to pray for both your future husband and yourself. It also talks about how we must be prepared while we are single for our future husband which I 100% agree with.

If you're single and wanting to find the one God has for you I'd encourage you to read this. Pray during your waiting time.

Disclaimer: This book was given to me for free by Waterbrook Multnomah for reviewing purposes.

11.29.2011

Single and lonely...

My pastor has shared this quote with me many times and I must say I repeat it to myself all the time!

"It's better to be single and lonely than married and miserable."

That is so stinking true!! I completely agree. However, it says nothing about getting over being lonely or even if you will. I guess that's up to me. Maybe, maybe not.

So... can I just be real? Being single is fun and all, I like it a lot because I can just focus on me and and my Savior, which I love, but sometimes (like this past week) I get lonely. And when I get lonely, I get lonely.

This week I've been praying about it. I'm not dating right now because I feel this season I am in is for me and Him only. He is working on me. Preparing me. So that when the time comes for me to date (if it be His will) then I shall be ready for my future husband.

God has revealed a couple things to me. The first thing is this. You will not meet Mr. or Mrs. Right until you learn to be content in the Lord. You will not have a lasting, forever relationship with someone until you become content and happy with the lasting, forever relationship you have with the Savior. Simple as that.

The second thing is, when we get lonely, instead of running to that friend or thing that makes you forget about your loneliness, run to the Lord. We need to learn to run to God when we are lonely because truly He is the only One who can take away our loneliness. If you go into a relationship already lonely you can expect there to be problems soon because you are asking someone to fill a spot in your life that only God can fill.

Let God work on you and prepare you. Stop trying to force yourself into a relationship with a person and focus on your relationship with the Lord. He will bring the right person into your life when you're ready. Love y'all! Be blessed! :)

11.28.2011

Honestly?

Fake people annoy me.

I am a fake at times. I annoy myself.

I had no intention of writing today, or at least not about this, but you know.. God had different plans.

This morning I got up (thanking God for that!) and did what I normally do. I went and read some of the blogs I follow. I read a few and then came across one that I nodded my head with at the beginning and then completely disagreed with at the end.

Before you judge me as a "holier-than-thou" type... I don't like that term really because we are to be holy because God is holy. I am NOT perfect at all. Period. Only by God's great forgiveness can I sit here and share with you what He's taught me. Now... I can really get started. ;)

As I was reading this blog (for personal reasons I am not tagging the blog because they are actually a lovely writer), I see them talking about being a real, authentic Christian. Not being a fake. That was the part I was right there with them on. The part that lost me was not the really the fact that they said that they say the f-bomb all the time or even our God's name in vain (okay that part did make me angry). No, the part that really got me was that they said, "That's who I am. Let me be honest and open. I lead Bible studies, but I cuss all the time." It wasn't the fact that they cuss, really, but that they tell me that they knows it's wrong. They know it's something their not supposed to be doing and they continue to do it. That makes me sad for him or her and angry for the people who I know will be mislead.

I am not perfect. I make mistakes every single day. I am not defined by my mistakes. I am defined by Him. I am defined by His grace. That being said, if someone is struggling with something, that's only natural, but my Bible (do correct me if you've read something different) says to put to death the former things of life (old life) and accept the new life we have in Christ. We must surrender ourselves daily and take up our cross daily and when we fall down, we must get back up and keep pressing. One of the crosses I take up daily is my battle with food. I like food a lot and sometimes just eat to eat, but I know this is wrong which means I have to surrender this every day so that I can be made holy like my Savior. I also have to take up the cross of my mouth. I like to talk. I can open my mouth sometimes and talk too much and say things that would've been best left unsaid.

That is honesty.

I applaud them for being real and at least telling people what they are struggling with, but to have no intention to try and be more like Christ bothers me because they have already claimed His name.

I have had a hard time writing this post because I don't want to come off as being judgemental or condemning because that is not what I'm doing. I am sad that this person has believed the lies of the enemy.

Don't believe the lies. You cannot follow Christ and stay the way you were before you met Him. Yes, it's hard, but it's so worth it. Allow Him to change you today and every day after. It's a process. Just because you mess up doesn't mean you should give up. Let Him pick you up and keep walking with Him. Have a blessed Monday! :)

11.27.2011

Sit still and be quiet...

I talk too much. Everyone knows this including myself and I refuse to deny something I know to be true.

I've been struggling a lot with how much I talk. Sometimes I want to close my mouth and not open it for a few days... but that never happens. Teehee!

This past week I've been completely annoyed with how much noise is in my life. It's me, it's other people, the radio, the internet, the television, etc. I rarely hear the voice of God because I am so consumed by all the voices around me.

One day I went for a walk with no music and just listened and talked with the Lord. Pure bliss. That is exactly what it was. No loud noise, no irritating interruptions, just me and Jesus talking and interacting. I wonder how many times He's tried to strike up a conversation with me and I was too "busy" to listen.

I am challenging myself this week to turn off the distractions more often and listen for His voice. Nothing is wrong with the internet, TV, music, talking to people, but sometimes it can be too much and we need to take a break and sit still and be quiet and simply be.

Who's with me? Who will turn off distractions for say... an hour each day this week and listen to Him? It's really nice to go on a walk without a care in the world and hear Him the whole way. :) <3 Have a blessed Sunday!

11.24.2011

Thanksgiving...

Today is Thanksgiving (duh) the day we give thanks for all we have.
Thanksgiving is my one of my most favorite holidays! I love just being content and thankful with everyone.

Sadly though, we only take one day out of the year to really be thankful. So sad. And really some people aren't even thankful for the whole day because they are busy preparing for a sale where they can accumulate more stuff.

However, I'm not doing any of the Black Friday stuff (I really do try to stay away from that as if my life depended on it;) ). Here's my top 10 list of things I'm thankful for this year...

1. I'm thankful for y'all (my blog peoples!). I'm thankful I have people who read my thoughts, things I've learned, and what God has given me to speak and that I can read what you're going through and dealing with. I love y'all. :)

2. I'm thankful that I have an amazing family who despite all the stuff I put them through earlier in the year has stuck with me and helped me through it. I'm super blessed to have them.

3. I'm thankful for my friends (and the best friend who knows who she is:) because sometimes I need a kick in the butt and someone to talk to/listen to. :)

4. I'm thankful that I'm not the same person I was a few months back. God has changed me and I'm super grateful.

5. I'm thankful that I have food to stuff my face with.

6. I'm thankful that the Macy's Thanksgiving Day parade comes on TV (which I am currently watching while writing this) because if it didn't I wouldn't get my fill of  Broadway Shows and random balloons! :D

7. I am thankful that God has given me His Word. His Love Letter to me. When I have a bad day just a few lines can pick me up. :) <3

8. I'm thankful to be free both by the Cross and the amazing men and women who fight for my freedom each day. (Note: Pray for the families and the men and women in our military.)

9. I'm thankful I can enjoy life. That God didn't make us like robots. We can enjoy food, sun, laughter, joy, etc. :)

10. Last but not least I'm thankful that my Daddy has saved me and that I am His and He is mine. :)

Happy Thanksgiving loves!!!! Praying it's a great day for you!! What are you thankful for? Thank God. I love y'all! :)

11.23.2011

Cold and alone...

She was 11 maybe 12. Very pretty.
The wind hit her face. She looked cold.
I watched her for a little bit wondering why she was all by herself in such a secluded area.
I thought maybe I should ask... but I didn't want to be a creeper.
I continued to watch her to make sure she didn't get kidnapped or hurt.

After a while she began to walk away and so did I. Our paths crossed on the way and I said hello. She spoke a soft, "Hi." and continued walking.
She kept looking back. Maybe to see if someone was following her. Maybe to see if anyone had noticed her. She might not have known... I noticed her. And God did too.

I don't know why, but that little girl impacted me today. I'm not sure what she was doing.. running away, just taking a walk, hiding away... but regardless, she was right there. I said nothing to let her know that life will be okay. That Jesus loves her. That she's beautiful. I just said hello.

As I began praying for her, I began to wonder... how many people cross my path everyday and I never say anything to them? I never show them the love of God. It saddens me greatly to think that.

Maybe God wanted me to talk to her, but I didn't. Too afraid. Too scared. Too nervous. What will I say? What should I have said? I don't know. Simply stated... I don't know.

That is in the past. I may only look forward and keep going. Learn from my mistakes. Maybe tomorrow, maybe the next day, and maybe the next, God will place someone there for me to talk to. Will I do it? Will I speak words of Life to them?

We never stop to think what someone is going through. Maybe that annoying person at the grocery store is dealing with a son or daughter who is in Iraq fighting for our freedom and she/he misses him or her.

Maybe that kid at school is so starved of attention at home that he or she decides to make it happen at school.

Maybe that man or woman at work is so grumpy because their family is falling apart.

Maybe that prostitute is a prostitute because she was never loved by anyone at home.

It's time to stop taking suface things. Stop judging people by how they look. Anyone can put on a brave face, but it's not their face that makes them brave. Step up. Next time you see somone who looks like they need encouragement go talk to them. I know it's hard, but pray about it. The Word says He (God) will give us the words we need to speak. Don't worry. I'm going to do my best to follow the Lord's voice wherever and whoever He leads me to. We can do this through Him. Be blessed!

**Special Thanksgiving post coming tomorrow! :)

11.21.2011

Mismatched...

So the other day I wrote this, and asked people to give me questions about something that isn't talked about too often and what they want to know.

Well, Clare wanted to know why it's so wrong to date or go out with unbelievers. Good question because it's really not addressed. We're just told not to do it and sometimes... let's be real, "don't do it." why? "because I said so." doesn't cut it.

So, first we must ALWAYS go to God's Word and see what He has told us about whatever it may be and here is a verse in 2 Corinthians that talks about being "unequally yoked" or "mismatched"...

"Do not be mismatched with unbelievers. For what partnership is there between righteousness and lawlessness? Or what fellowship does light have with darkness?" 2 Corinthians 6:14

That's pretty simple. You don't mix light and darkness. Righteousness and lawlessness. Very true. But what if you want to go a little deeper?

Why?

Why don't we mix light and darkness? Why don't we mix righteousness and lawlessness?

Thankfully ("Give thanks in all circumstances for this God's will for you in Christ Jesus.") I've been in a similar situation where I was "mismatched" with.. someone who wasn't a true follower of Christ. Side note: y'all, just because they claim the name of Christ does not mean they are a Christian. Watch out.

So I was with someone for a little bit.. not very long and we had fun and stuff together, but somehow.. the person I started out being, and the person I was becoming while with them was not good for me.

After just a couple months, I was doing downright wrong things and letting this person become my 'god' (my fault, not theirs). Pretty soon my relationship with the Lord was all but gone. The only time I talked to Him was at night when I was going to sleep. That was it. I left Him and everyone else way back behind me while I pressed forward on a path that lead to death.

We as women, (if you're a guy... tune out for a sec ;), want to help everybody. We want to change everybody. Yet we all have to go through the process of learning that the only One who can change anyone is God the Father. No one else. No matter how hard you try, it just won't work.

That has been my problem for a while. I want to get with someone and help change them and the process of doing so, I just fall with them.

Did you catch that? Why do we not mix light and darkness? Because no matter how strong you are, you can't help but get drug down with someone who is not following the Lord. Our flesh is weak and while we can do all things through Christ, we must remember that when you spend a lot of time with someone who doesn't follow Him, our thoughts will be invaded by satan and his deceptiveness and we'll begin to think in a different, wrong way.

Our purpose in life is to know Christ and make Him known. You can make Him known without dating someone who doesn't know Him (yeah that hurts to hear, but it's the truth). Don't compromise who you are in Christ, just to be in a relationship with someone who doesn't know the Lord. Hope this clears up a bit of the confusion you might have had. God bless y'all!! :)

11.18.2011

Surrender now... and for the rest of your life...

Lecrae put on twitter today:

"Repentance is a continual act. It's a lifestyle not just a moment in your life."

Amen!!!!! Could not have said it better myself.

See today we have lots of youth services, mega-churches, "Jesus clubs", etc. and at the end of each one you hear a really passionate preacher or evangelist talk about how if you're living the wrong way you need to come to the alter right now and repent and then they go on their way.

Don't get me wrong, if it weren't for services such as these, I might not be saved. However, I can't help but wish that people would understand that while you are surrendering right then, that doesn't mean that that is the only time you surrender. If you're confused... it's not the only time you surrender to God.

I wish someone had told me that a few years ago. I didn't really know too much about it (it being surrendering to the Lord and living for Him), I didn't really understand that every single day I must die to myself. I thought you did it once and that was it. Not so.

This year I went through the process of understanding what it means and what it looks like to be a follower of Jesus. Plainly stated, you're either all in or all out. Jesus does not want lukewarm recruits (followers), He wants completely and totally committed followers. You are either on Jesus' side and living for Him or you are on Satan's side and living for him. Simple as that. So... whose side are you on?

It's never too late to give Him full control. What we as followers of Him must realize is we need to surrender every single day. Not once a week, or once a year, every day.

Once I got that... once I realized that Jesus wants all of me or none at all, I began to be more blessed. (Side note: Don't misunderstand, the Lord wants and desires you because He loves you so much, but if you're only gonna put in half the effort, then you need to wait until you are ready to give Him everything... and that day will come. I pray.)

When you give Jesus full control you begin to live the life the Lord has always wanted you to live. The life He created you to live. That is truly living. So what's your choice gonna be? Don't rush, take your time, make sure you really want to live for Him and if so then surrender to Him right now... and then continue to do so every day for the rest of your life. I love y'all family!! Stay blessed! :)

11.17.2011

Oblivion or just not caring?

Why do people think that if they don't talk about something it'll be as if it doesn't happen?

I'm always curious why people think that. Maybe they are just trying to make themselves feel better. It's easy to lie to yourself and eventually believe those lies. Trust me, I know.

The Church's job (at least partially) is to help educate the believers so that they may help others in their exploration(s). Yet, so much of the time the very people in the church do not understand why they do or don't do something because it has never been talked about. People stick their heads in the sand far too often.

For instance, I literally can count on 1 hand the number of times sex has been discussed in the church. For real. Yet we are told to wait until we're married and no one can tell you why because it's an "uncomfortable" subject. Really? Why? We don't find it uncomfortable to talk about the Bible (at least you shouldn't in church) and sex is talked about plainly in the Bible.

I read a story the other day about a woman who got married and both she and her husband were virgins. They had grown up in the church, being told that sex was "bad" and not to do it before you're married (no pun intended) and when they got married... they still considered it bad and it made their marriage suffer. Their marriage suffered so much that they eventually got divorced. Now I sit here wondering how many other marriages have been ended over the same, exact thing.

To clarify, my belief (gathered from things I've read, opinions I've formed, and personal experience) is the reason God tells us not to have sex before we are married is because we awaken desires that we are not yet ready for. God told Adam and Eve not to eat from the tree of the knowledge of good and evil not because he was punishing them but because the path after that only led to death not life. Same thing happens when you have sex before you're married.. you give yourself away each time and begin dying slowly and painfully. I shared my story regarding all this here.

I can talk about so much that isn't really addressed in church like widows, orphans, drugs, the Holy Spirit (yeah I find that one a little alarming, not that all the other's aren't as well), drinking, going clubbing (personally I just want to hear opinions on that one...), sex trafficking, etc etc. There are very important issues in this world that need to be talked about and have something done about and sticking our heads in the sand doesn't help at all.

Maybe if something bad was happening close to home then people might care. Just because it's not you or someone you know struggling in some small or large area does not mean it doesn't matter. It just means you might need a heart check.

I'm not trying to be a 'debbie downer' but I do find it very upsetting that there is so much that is not being talked about. So all this to say that starting right now I want to hear what you've been wondering about... what questions do you have? What is something that you've always wondered about but never had the courage to ask anything about it? I can't promise you an answer right away, but I will say I will address as many issues as possible. Together we can make a change by God's hand. :) Start asking away!

11.16.2011

Dear Brother...

Well ladies I wrote y'all a note last week found here. Now I'm writing to all the guys out there. :)

Dear Brother...
I know, they tell you in order to be a man you should have sex with a girl out there and then tell everyone about it. That's the "cool" thing to do, right? Wrong. The world thinks it's cool, but really it's not. You are not made a man by what you do or don't do. God has made you a man. You must find the character that lies behind that. His character.

Dear Brother...
I know she said she wasn't like all the other girls. She just wanted to please you, but in doing so you both fell. And fell hard. You might be struggling right now with getting over everything that you have done. You might be hurting really badly and struggling not to go find another girl who will do just what she did. Stay strong. Stop letting the lies of the enemy fill your mind to the point that you can't hear His truth. Fill your mind His Word and you will begin to hear everything satan says to you fall away.. or at least recognize them as lies.

Dear Brother...
So.. you're not like everybody else. You're not the "sports star" (maybe you are), or the "tech geek", or the "actor" or the "business man", but you are trying to fit yourself into different roles because you think that's what girls like and that's what will make your parents happy if you "make yourself something". But guess what? While you're trying to please everyone you're letting God down. He made you uniquely you for a reason. You don't have to try and make yourself something you're not.  If God doesn't like what He sees (just so you know He loves you!), He will change what needs changing. Stop trying to fit in a mold you were never meant to fit in.

Dear Brother...
I know home life can be rough sometimes because everyone wants you to "stand up" and "be a man" and honestly, you have no idea what a "man" looks like because your dad hasn't been around long enough to show you. Maybe he was never there. You feel hopeless and angry and hurt. But you only show the anger. 3 words. Let it go. Give it to God. He can make you more of a "man" than any person on this earth. The change begins on the inside and then slowly, gradually you begin to see the works on the outside. "Rome wasn't built in a day." So why are you trying to make yourself something right this very second that God is telling you "it's a process."?

Dear Brother...
I love you. I don't know (and then again, maybe I do), but I love you. You are a part of my family. Our family. God's family. He loves you. A lot. I hate to know how bad the enemy lies to you. That you think things that are just wrong because that's all that satan has filled your mind with. You can put a stop to it. Read His (God's) Word. Read it every single day. It doesn't have to be for a long time... just read. And pray. Prayer is huge because God hears our prayers and answers them. And maybe you should find someone who is or has struggled in the same thing and can help you out. That's always good to know you're not alone in a problem (and you aren't).

Dear Brother...
I'm praying for you. Right now. I pray that you see yourself through God's eyes and find your worth in Him and believe everything He says about you. I pray you stand strong. I know it's hard... it's hard for everyone, girls and guys alike, but we can do this together. By God's hand and with His help. Stay blessed. :)

11.14.2011

Words eternal...

"You're not good enough."

"He only likes you because you have big hips, and a big butt."

"It's not like I rush home to give you a call."

"When's the baby due? Haha!"

These are a few of the words spoken to me in my life that I still remember to this day.

The last one.. I remember that day better than most. I was going to a school "meet the teacher" day and because I was pretty fat when I was little, she (the teacher) thought it was funny and asked me if I was having a baby as a joke. I walked right out there and in my little 4th grade mind began hating myself and started to cry.

I've heard so many painful jokes that even though the person claimed they were joking, killed me inside. And if anyone knows me (and for those who don't), I wear my emotions on my sleeve. Yes, I know, I've been told it's not the best choice to make but I don't care. I am not going to pretend I am okay, when I'm not. So any time someone said something that hurt my feelings, I got quiet, I got angry, I began hating them and hating myself and I would cry. Maybe crying silently for a minute and eventually it would turn into sobs.

I'm sure right now as you're reading this you are remembering at least one (probably more) moments in your life where someone said something really hurtful to you. You can forgive them. You can love them. But those words will be in your mind forever.

There are plenty of people I have forgiven, people I indeed love with all my heart, that simply cannot change the fact that I remember those words spoken to me. No, I don't hold it against them. As far as I'm concerned it was a completely different person who spoke those words to me, but none the less I remember them and the pain that they have caused me for so long.

God's Word is eternal. That means it's here today, tomorrow, the next day, and even after this earth is gone, those Words will still be alive and active. His Word will never fail us because He never fails us.

What if we focused more on His Word to us, then we focus on the words of other people to us?

What if instead of seeking your confidence in another person, whether getting words of affirmation or words of hate, we sought our confidence in Jesus Christ and everything He says to us?

I think the problem with us is we don't value God's opinion as much as we value other people's. Even though what God thinks is true and what other people think are just... thoughts.

My life would look a little different if I did that consistently every day. If instead of listening to other people and what they say to me and about me, I listened to who God says I am. Wow. Powerful thoughts there.

I am going to strive this week to consistently, day to day, listen to the Lord and His Word each and every day and find my confidence in Him and nothing else. What about you?

Those words you remember from back in the day (even if it was just yesterday) do not define you. Who the Lord says you are is what defines you. Listen to Him because His Word is true. Love y'all! :)

11.11.2011

Temporary...

"You do not have a soul. You are a soul. You have a body." - C.S. Lewis

That quote.. wow. God has been using it to wreck me. And when I say wreck.. I really mean it.

Everything is temporary. We've heard this so many times... but have you ever thought about it for real?
Have you ever gone past the surface, and dug deeper into that? No? Well me neither... until this week.

This week I started thinking about it. And some of the thoughts that I've had are actually mind blowing.

The first time I ever heard that quote from C.S. Lewis I completely disagreed with it. I'm not entirely sure why.. part of it had to do with the fact I've never thought about it in those terms so it was new to me. I refuse to accept something blindly... sometimes I refuse to accept the truth... I like to either forget about it (like I did) or dig deeper (like I've been doing).

Have you ever thought about how these bodies of ours are not coming with us to Heaven?
I thought about that for a good hour 4 nights ago.

What I've started to realize is, this body is not gonna make it past this earth. Who I am is not found in the way I look. Who I am is found deep within me. In my soul. I am a soul. I have a body.


"Your beauty should not consist of outward things [like] elaborate hairstyles and the wearing of gold ornaments or fine clothes; 4 instead, [it should consist of] the hidden person of the heart with the imperishable quality of a gentle and quiet spirit, which is very valuable in God's eyes." - 1 Peter 3:3-4
 
I must've read that verse a million times and never really thought about who the "hidden person of the heart" was or is. I just thought it meant, be a good person, try to do the right things... don't lie, cheat, etc. Now that my eyes have been opened I see what it really is saying, we should not focus so much on our appearance.. our body. Instead we need to be focusing on our soul. Because in the end that's all that is coming with us to Heaven.
 
Our soul = our life. Jesus = life for our soul.
 
Stop focusing so much on your body. I know, I too spend a lot of time obsessing over how thin I want to be, how pretty I am or want to be, etc. but I see now all this stuff is temporary. Except... my soul. God has saved me. He has saved you. Let Him work in your soul so you can get to that "gentle and quiet spirit, which is very valuable in God's eyes." Love y'all! :)

11.09.2011

Dear sister...

This is to all the ladies out there: I love you all. :)

Dear sister,
I want you to know that I love you. Yeah, we girls can fight sometimes (or all the time ;) ,but that's just because we are all hurting.
It might make you feel better when you tell a person their ugly, or stupid, or whatever because you know.. they told you the same thing years ago.
Learn to deal with it in a mature, godly manner. I know it hurts. Believe me. But we must learn to forgive and move on. Why? Because that makes us a true woman of God.

Dear sister,
I know you thought that guy was "the one" but he turned out not to be and now you're hurt.
You're left wondering if there are any other guys out there who will love you and truly love you.
There are.
Trust God. He is preparing some amazing, incredible guy for you. Don't force yourself into a relationship with a guy who doesn't deserve you. It'll just hurt you both.
Be patient. Wait for the Lord. The right guy will come along when you both are ready.
Accept this as a time of waiting. Of preparing. Of living.

Dear sister,
I know you wish you looked like that super model. She's got all the "right" clothes, the beautiful hair, the gorgeous body, no pimples, or blemishes. But you know what? She's struggling just like you.
She wishes she had a true life. That she was more than her image.
She is. She just doesn't know it.
You don't have to be her, and she doesn't have to be you. You both need to be yourself.
This world needs you. There are so many things that only you can do. Let God make you fully His so that you can do those things.

Dear sister,
You are more than your image. Don't you believe that? You don't need to look like me and I don't need to look like you.
Wanna know why?
We are both fearfully and wonderfully made (Psalm 139). We are both beautiful.
We both have the potential to be that Proverbs 31 woman. We just need to choose whether we accept to be her.

Dear sister,
I'm praying for you.
I don't know you (maybe I do), but I don't need to know you to know you are going through tough times.
I know you struggle with pain, thoughts, heart ache, life; every single day.
I know it's hard. I'm struggling too. But the great news is God is with us. He is right beside us, holding our hand, walking us through life. And He is in us.
Helping deal with the things that no one around you may know about it.
I'm praying a special blessing over you right now. I pray you find the value you have in Christ and walk in that confidently every day of your life.

I love you dear sister. You are beautiful, valueable, wondeful, amazing, in every way because you are His. Believe that. Walk in it. Blessings! :)

11.08.2011

Losing myself...

So.. I'm about to share something that I am very passionate about (as of this year). I think it's a very important topic and something that isn't talked about enough, concerning girls. I'm gonna tell you my story...

Warning: If you have not had the "birds and the bee's" talk please don't read this.

A while back I lost my purity. Now before you go spreading lies (if you know me) or thinking about not reading my blog anymore (if you don't) I want you to understand, I have never physically had sex. But guess what? You can lose your purity without having sex. Read that again. Allow me to explain...

It just started out as kissing... which then led to something else, which led to something else, and then "things" became as natural as a kiss goodnight.

My purity was gone. After my first... hmm.. how to put this... "sexual encounter", it was like the blind fold had been lifted off my eyes and I found out something I never knew existed. It was brutal.

I didn't know what "Do not awaken love until it so desires." meant until then... don't fool around or "mess" around until you're married because once it's awakened, it's up for good.

My mind soon became consumed with getting my next "fix" as if I was a drug addict or alcoholic.

Nobody will understand any of this unless you have already been through it. For 2 months I did things I knew was wrong. I allowed someone to use me because I was too afraid of losing them to realize I was losing myself.

Everyday was a battle. I wanted him so bad. I wanted 'that' feeling so bad. I just wanted that 'want' to go away. But it didn't. At all.

Once we were broken up, then the battle grew more intense. Now I'm all alone, have no one to do anything with and I don't know what to do with myself. I hated this time so much.

I had lost self respect for myself and for other guys in general, thinking they all want the same thing. I hated myself for allowing someone to pressure me into something I knew was wrong.
I hated him for taking from me the one thing I thought I'd have until I got married.
I hated life because every day was another day to fight the urge to lose myself again.

I didn't think any other girls were going through this so I hid it. For a long time. I didn't tell anyone, I even tried to tell myself it never happened. I never.. "messed around". But the lies didn't work for me. I knew what I had done and that it was wrong and that I couldn't take it back... and that part, not being able to take it back, killed me.

Then a while back I came across The Good Women project. Thank God for that website! I finally figured out that I was not alone. That there are other girls out there struggling just as I was and that God has forgiven us all and wants to set us free.

People tell you that guys are the only ones who think about sex all the time. That's a lie. If you're purity is gone (physically or mentally) then it can consume you just like it consumes them.

I have now realized, it is by nothing that I have done or will do, that makes me good. Only Jesus Christ in me makes me good. Take Him away and I'm back to being the filthy soul I was before. Leave Him, and He makes me more like Him everyday.

I finally laid myself down at His feet. I laid down everything I have done and let go. I let go of the guilt I had. I let go of the pain I had remembering all the things I did. I let go of the lies satan had told me so many times before. And I let go of my full self and laid me down at His feet.

I found forgiveness for myself and for that person the day I did that. It was freeing. God set me free.

Now, it's not like a magical transformation. It is a process. Everyday I have to choose not to think about those things I thought about before. The new me simply cannot go back to the old ways of life. It's like getting a new car but putting old, worn - out tires on it. It just doesn't work.

I want you to know that no matter what you've done (or haven't done) God loves you unconditionally. He does not change. He is there for you always.

Let go of your sin. Let it go. It's doing you no good hanging on to the old things.
Welcome the new life you can have in Christ and let Him transform you every day. If you need to talk about this or something else leave me a comment with your email and I'll get back to you. I'd love to help you out. Also check out the good women project's website. It's such a blessing in my life. Love y'all! :)

11.06.2011

Raw honesty...

Judgement.

I see it all around me. At home, at church, at the store, in myself... it's everywhere.

I hate it. I hate feeling like I'm being judged, but if you really want to make me angry (my blood... yeah I think it actually does boil) judge someone who's around me.
I don't have to know them personally, if you call them a "slut", say a racial slur towards them, make fun of them because of who they truly are... we are gonna have problems. Promise.

I don't want it to be this way. I don't want to get really angry, but you know what? I am really angry.

I'm angry that people feel like they can't come to church because the people there are too judgemental.
I'm angry that satan has been lying to every person around me (and not).
I'm angry that there are people all over the earth that kill themselves because they think life isn't worth it.
I'm angry that people are excluded at the one place they should be accepted.

I'm just angry. Is it godly anger? I'm not sure. Maybe. Maybe not.
I know for sure that I'm angry.

Earlier I was so frustrated with people around me gossiping about others.
Guess what my solution was? To gossip right back about them!
How freaking messed up is that? To do the same wrong they did?! What?!

I can't do this on my own.
I've tried... many times in fact. Over and over and over.
Living life by myself never, ever works (the one time applying never and it being absolutely correct).

I need God. I need Him to the point that it hurts. Not in a bad way (sometimes because my flesh is so weak) but... like when you want someone so bad that it hurts you because you love them so much.. yeah, that hurt.

God is getting ready to do something big, I just know it. However, I believe He still preparing me for that and recently I've been closing the door right in His face. Then complaining that I can't see or hear or feel Him. Stupid me.

This is a time of testing for me.
I'm being completely real, honest, and open with you guys right now. If you're going through testing too remember, satan will attack your strengths because once those are out of the way, you're pretty much done.
We've got to stay strong. We've got to accept God's help and keep believing. If you close your heart to God, you might as well close the casket because you are dead. He can bring you to life. He IS life. Think about it...

Do you want life or death?

If you are struggling like me (really who isn't?) leave me a comment so I can pray for you! Prayers from you guys would be welcomed too! :) Love you all!


11.03.2011

Pain = Beauty.

Regret. Pain. Hurt. Tears.

Do these describe where you've been or are right now?

I'm pretty certain (like 99.9% sure) that everyone on this earth that is up to any age has experienced all those things. If not... well thank God for that.

There was a time in my life where for 2.. make that 3 straight weeks I did nothing but sit in bed, sleep, cry, pray, and repeat that process over and over and over again, day in and day out.

Can I tell you that was one of the worst times of my life? Yet, God turned this time into something so good. I just couldn't see it.

I used to dread anything that would make my emotions go from happy to anything that was not happy. I mean, who really wants to be sad or upset? Not me.

But God has shown me that it's those times where I am hurting, and crying out that He becomes even more real to me. I would say that when I'm happy... sometimes (not all the time), I don't always look to the Lord for help. I think, well I'm happy. That's good. See ya' later God. When I need You. When I'm hurting.

He wants to help me through everything. Not just my pain. Not just your pain. He wants to have complete and full control of your every moment. Why? Because His moments are better than ours could ever be... despite our best efforts.

The reason I was going through that pain months ago was because I was being completely disobedient to God and that was part of the consequence. He got my attention when I began suffering.

Instead of asking, 'why me?' when you are suffering, ask, "what are you trying to show me, God?"

Pain = beauty. Why? Because when we are in the most pain, that's when we begin to grow. Spiritual growth is beautiful.

God is moving all the time. Only when you truly open your eyes and heart are you going to see what He's doing. Open your eyes. :) Love y'all!!

Living Close to God (when you're not good at it) - Review

So I read this book by Gene Edwards called Living Close to God (when you're not good at it) and it was a really great book.

Basically Gene tells you what he did to experience God even more in His time in His Word. The main key to it is slowing down. That was something I needed to read and think about because a lot of times I don't slow down and read His Word, but speed through it and then wonder why I didn't feel it 'come alive'.

If you're looking for a good, easy read then I'd say you should go buy this book. I read it fairly easily because Mr. Edwards doesn't confuse you with big, over-whelming words or theories. He simply writes what the Lord puts on his heart and it turns out being simple, yet profound.

Note: This book was given to me for free by Waterbrook Multnomah for reviewing purposes.

11.01.2011

My 'hood...

I love my city... like.. LOVE it!

Unfortunately, a lot of people don't... maybe it's just because they can't see what I can see coming. Maybe it's because it's primarily black. Maybe they just can't deal with "thugs" and "hooligans". There can be many reasons, but whatever they think, I still love where I live and the people I'm around.

I see God raising up a generation who is gonna be unashamed and radical for His name. And I see that people coming and being used to save all the people that the... "holier-than-thous" do not want to talk to much less be associated with.

Most people I know who visit the area I live do not care for the people or the place. It's called the "ghetto" (admittedly, I call it that too, but mostly as a joke and it could be considered as such) and I have friends who will not drive through where I live.

Now before you think I'm living in the scariest place on earth, let me tell you, where I live I feel comfortable. Others may not because they aren't accustomed to it but the crime rate here isn't that high and when I walk down the stress I do not fear that I'm gonna be shot (despite prior beliefs).

Side note: there is crime everywhere (as I'm sure you know) and if you are trying to find a place where no bad things happen... sorry to disappoint you, but no such place exists.

I see this area, this city being awakened from the sleep they have been in for so long. I believe God is gonna use me and others around me to help bring this about. I see the people who are desperate, who have been doing drugs and dealing them, being healed and set free. I see men and women being set free from finding security and love in sex with people they barely know. I see children having hope and a bright future where they know the Lord and live to please Him. I see people letting go of all that hinders and stops them, and running towards the One who can do all things.

I can see all of this. I can almost taste it, I feel that it's so close. I am praying for revival.

Yet, I feel as though it's me against the world (even though I know I'm not). It's just I know people who said that they were "dedicated" to this area, who have gone to church every Sunday saying it's their purpose to be a Light here and then up and leave. People who are of great faith have left this place alone for so long, but then complain about the lack of Christ here. You cannot complain about what is going on around you, if you are doing nothing to help change it. Plain and simple.

No matter where you live, don't give up where you at. No matter what is going on. No matter what the crime rate. Get on your face and pray! God changes things when His people pray. He hears every word you speak to Him. He is listening. So go ahead... tell Him what you want done in your city! Tell Him what you want done in your state. Tell Him what you want done in this world and then wait patiently for His reply. Be obedient enough to say, "Yes, Lord." No matter what your role is. We can change the world by and through God and through Him alone. I love you all!