Same Message

As I look through my content folder I notice a file titled, Cry Baby.  In the file is a blog post with the exact same message I posted about four days ago.  Of course it was worded a bit differently, but it described the same situation that lead to the same revelation.  I am now convinced more than ever that God is speaking to me loud and clearly, telling me to BE STILL.  If you know me, you know that is quite the challenge. 

So here it is, a previously unposted blog post from nine months ago.  If you read my post earlier this week you will enjoy the same message twice.  If you are like me, you needed to hear it one more time:

This morning at 5am my little sweetie got up to eat.  Before I could feed her I needed to change her diaper because she’d been sleeping several hours.  As I am changing her diaper she quickly grows impatient and begins to scream.  She is twisting her little body in anger and frustration.  I cannot get this diaper on fast enough for either of us.  “Don’t you know that I can feed you a lot quicker if you would sit still”.  I look at her and think, ‘if only she knew my plan was to feed her, but I have to get her out of this wet diaper first’.  Because she is a baby and does not understand she cries and cries and cries.  Until I have finally complete her diaper change and began to feed her.  As she eats I imagine she is thinking in her baby brain “FINALLY!”

Many of us are like my seven month old.  We need something from God and scream because we are not getting it fast enough.  In Dylen’s case she needed food.  As her mother, I would never deny her of anything she needs.  I just needed to put her in the best position to receive what she needed.  I know that she needed to be changed first so she could rest once she has eaten.  Dylen did not know of my plan for her, so she resisted and twisted her body every way she could.  I had to consistently re-position her in order to complete her change and position her for what she needed…

But my God shall supply all your needs according to his riches in glory by Christ Jesus. Philippians 4:19  So if God will supply all your needs, and there are needs that are not yet supplied, could it be we are not allowing God to prepare us?  That He has to continue to reposition us, prolonging fulfillment.  As I shake my head at this little baby that just doesn’t get it.  I imagine a God shaking His head at me.  As I say to her, “I am going to take care of you little baby.”  I hear God say the same. 

If you then, who are evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your Father who is in heaven give good things to those who ask Him!  Matthew 7:11

 


 

Thank you God for my portion, for everything you have entrusted me with.  Thank you for supplying my every need.  Thank you for your grace each day.  Thank you for gentle reminders that you are in control.  Thank you for being concerned with every thing that concerns me.  Thank you for forgiving me countless times.  Thank you for giving me way more than I deserve.  Thank you for the strength to be still while you are preparing me for what’s next.  In Jesus Name, Amen.


Do you have your copy of Find and Fulfill Purpose yet?  If not, click the picture to order yours today!

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Photo Credit: Deniz Altindas

Changing

One of my current roles is that of a housewife aka stay at home mom or as my insurance agent likes to call me, Household Engineer.  Regardless of title, my primary job function includes, but surely not limited to, spending my days with an energetic toddler and strong-willed infant.

This blog post was inspired by the strong-willed one-year-old.  She is number four out of four, so I assume her stubbornness is a result of being the baby and not inherited from her mother – moving on – This beautiful little dear gave me the toughest time changing her poopy diaper the other day (hang with me, the entire post is not about poop I promise).  I could not understand why she was fighting so hard against a clean diaper.  Dumbfounded by the reason anyone, even a baby, would fight so hard to stay smelly and dirty.   I tried to reason with her but my reasoning fell on deaf ears.  “Dylen, you don’t want to be stinky and messy.  Let me clean you up then you can play again”.  It is likely she did not even hear my plea over her loud yells.  The worse part of her resistance is that it caused a bigger mess and added time to the process.  She was so angry that she had to stop playing with her brother in order to get her diaper changed.  In the end, the clean diaper was never what she was fighting against.  It was the inconvenience of the clean diaper.

It happened again today, but this time the ante was upped.  You see, breakfast came an hour earlier today because I changed my workout schedule.  My littles played in the Kid Center while I tried to defeat death on the treadmill.  By the time we headed to the car all I wanted to do was pass out and all they wanted to do was eat.  She was signing for food as I put her in her car seat.  She screamed the better part of our ten minute commute.  Arriving home, there was still one more thing standing in the way of her and her meal.  Yup, a diaper change.  She was furious.  Good thing she cannot pronounce words yet, I am certain she would have gotten into trouble for the words she chose to say in that moment of anger.  She was so mad at me, that just as I was putting on the new diaper she peed.  Intentionally.  At least it felt that way.  After cleaning her up, a second time and sitting her in her highchair to finally feed her, I wondered if I ever acted that way with my father, my heavenly father that is.  Am I ever so focused on what I want or even need, that I kick and scream as he is preparing me;  As if he is ignoring me or has no intention of meeting my need?  All the while making a bigger mess?

So if you sinful people know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your heavenly Father give good gifts to those who ask him.  Matthew 7:11 NLT

My guess is there have been countless times that I was laser focused on what I wanted and could not be bothered with how God was preparing me for it.   Have I prolonged God’s blessings because I kept making a bigger mess while he was cleaning me up?   I appreciate the “gentle” reminder through my time with my daughter today.  The reminder that I serve a God who loves me and would never withhold anything from me.   Anything that I need, I already have.  Anything that is not manifested in my life, He is still preparing me for.  He is changing the things that will interfere with my enjoyment of what’s to come.

This reminds me of Pastor John’s sermon a couple weeks ago.   “If God changes your circumstances but your heart doesn’t change, you won’t know how to steward the victory” For example, if God supernaturally heals your body, or your marriage, but your heart does not change, you will not be able to maintain the blessing.  God is a God of process.  He wants to prepare us for our blessings.  Much like a parent wants to prepare their child to receive something better.  When we hold on to our old selves; habits, sins, comfort zones….I can only image we look like a stubborn infant not wanting what is best for us.  Choosing a dirty diaper over being cleaned up and made new in order to escape temporary inconvenience.  Today my focus is on God and opening my heart to His perfect will.  Focusing on my wants and needs take my eyes off God and makes me weary, impatient, even discouraged.  But when I focus on Him I am encouraged.  Join me today in trusting in the Lord with all your heart
and lean not on your own understanding;
in all your ways submit to him,
and he will make your paths straight.  Provers 3:5-6

The Good News:

If you are like me and keep making messes while God is trying to clean you up, know that it is always an ongoing process and you are always worth saving to Him.  God LOVES you and is never mad at you.  You can never go outside of His Love.

→ Proof – Romans 8:39 NLT

“No power in the sky above or in the earth below–indeed, nothing in all creation will ever be able to separate us from the love of God that is revealed in Christ Jesus our Lord.”


Dear God,

I surrender my every want, need, and desire to you.  I will not depend on what my eyes see, my head thinks, or my heart feels.  I will fully rely on You and Your word.  I trust You to do exactly what You said.  Thank you for being my provider, my protector and a good, good father.  I love you.  Amen.


 

For more information about God’s great plans for you, purchase my latest book, Find and Fulfill Purpose at http://findandfulfillpurpose.com

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Photo credit:  (window pane) Gaelle Marcel @gaellemm

Monsters in the Dark

On the west end of our home there is a long hallway that leads to the kids’ bedrooms and their bathroom.  At both ends of the hallway is a light switch.  Day or night, it never fails they hit the light switch before they walk through the hallway.  We have told them repeatedly that they do not need the light on, but they insist.  Because they smack the switch as they walk down the hall, it eventually broke.  Now they are forced to walk down the hall without the light on.  So of course they want an escort each time they walk down the hall when it’s dark. 

Same story for our basement.  They never go alone.  And this isn’t a damp, scary dungeon basement.  It is a finished basement with an office, play room, media room and an aquarium.  But to them it is the spot where the monsters hang out.

In my growing frustration as a parent, I try to convince the kiddos to just go in the basement or down the hall alone. It is nothing there to be afraid of.  But my voice falls on deaf ears.  I try to reason with them:

“There are no monsters here – or anywhere for that matter.”

“If there were monsters they would not stay confined to the hallway or the basement.”

“Your dad would kill any monster intruders.”

“We would not let anything happen to you guys.” 

 “If you see a monster, yell and I will come save you.”… No luck. 

trust

I asked myself, am I more frustrated that they are afraid and nothing is there or that they do not trust that I will protect them?  I concluded that it’s what I view as a lack of trust that does it.  That frustrates me.

 

 

Then I thought about when I say, “I trust you Lord”, but worry myself sick.  Worry whenever my children aren’t with me or when I don’t know what to do with my business or the countless “what ifs” that run around my head all day long.   Can you relate? You trust God but are crippled with fear or anxiety whenever you send your kids anywhere or maybe when you board a plane or when you are unsure about money or a job or health or your marriage….   At times, we are scared to death, looking for a metaphorical light switch to shed light on the dark and scary hallways of our life.

hallway - walk

I believe you God BUT this dark situation in my life scares me.  I need some sort of light to let me know that everything will be ok.  I need to know that if I walk through this darkness you will be on the other side of it.  I need to know that as I walk through this darkness I will not be consumed by it. 

He gets it; it’s dark, it’s scary, it’s unknown, it’s tough, it’s uncomfortable.  He never promised us it wouldn’t be.  The goal is to rely completely on Him.  When we need to ‘see it with our own eyes’ it is no longer Trust. 

“Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways submit to Him and He will direct your paths.”  Proverbs 3:5-6

Basically → Let God guide you.  And if God is guiding you, you don’t have to rely on your eyes.  And if you don’t have to rely on your eyes, darkness is not a problem. 

So next time you are in a dark situation and you cannot see your way through it, remember, you don’t have to.  God got you. 

Trusting God does not change unknown situations to comfortable paths. 

Trusting God gives us Peace in the unknown, unfamiliar, and dark places.  

So fear not friends, our Savior said: “Have I not commanded you?  Be strong and courageous.  Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged, for the LORD your God will be with you wherever you go” [even in the dark] – Joshua 1:9

ungrateful

My husband and I along with a few other couples, went to a concert this summer.  We love and support independent artists so usually the concerts we attend are general admission (no assigned seats) therefore we like to arrive early.  This particular day was mid-July, it is very hot and we are waiting outside on an unshaded walkway for the doors of the venue to open.  Meanwhile there are street performers and panhandlers vying for our attention.  As I sit there melting from the vibrant rays of the gorgeous sun, a man runs over to catch up with a woman that had been walking up the block asking for change.  He bought her dinner from a nearby café and needed to get it to her.  As he approach her and gave her the Styrofoam box she looked at him concerned and said, “You aint got a dollar?”.  Their audience (those of us waiting in line) was outraged.  We could not believe the level of ungratefulness.  ‘She didn’t even say thank you!’  There were whispers of, ‘that’s why I don’t help people’ and ‘he should take that food back’.  Not sure if the heat was getting to us or the sheer boredom of the line we were standing in, but we all directed our attention to the ungrateful lady standing in the middle of the street with a hot meal that no one thought she deserved.  We made a unanimous decision to be her judge, and we were not lenient.  We were pretty unanimous that she shouldn’t be allowed to enjoy that meal she did not appreciate. The gentleman shrugged and walked away while shaking his head.  We all settled our conscious by confirming we did not need to give money to the panhandlers in our presence that day because they would not appreciate it anyway. 

Have you ever felt like God was tapping you on the shoulder?  I do all the time.  This particular time He was holding up a mirror.  I often feel God is holding up a mirror when He wants me to see myself a little more closely.  I knew this was a reminder that I had unfairly judged someone.  After all it is not our job to judge.  But in this instance, I had judged a woman for being ungrateful.  Surely there is nothing in me that resembles thanklessness.  I say thank you ALL THE TIME.  I appreciate all of God’s blessings and everything anyone does for me.  So I looked longer…then I saw it.  That glimpse of me that was so focused on what I needed from God that I overlooked what I already had from Him.  Ever been so anxious for something from God that you have laser focus and all your prayers are asking for that ‘thing’?  You get so caught up in the delivery of the miracle that you are asking for, that you forget to say thank you for the miracle you are living in?…yeah, me too. 

We often have everything we need but cannot see it because we are looking past it to those things we think we need.  Or the things we want so badly.  We want a new job with a better boss and better hours so we forget to say ‘thank you that I have a job’.  ‘That in this economy while others struggle to find work I have employment’.  ‘Thank you that there is food when I am hungry while so many have no food’.  ‘Thank you that there is a roof over my head while too many are sleeping on the streets’.  ‘Thank you that I have You, while there are yet people that do not know you’.

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I am not encouraging you to stop asking, I am simply reminding us all to say thank you along the way.  Maybe what we think we need right now, God is providing in another way or waiting for us to make room for it.  Either way we have to trust His timing and remember to be content.  When we focus on what seems to be unanswered prayer, our faith gets shaky and we miss what God is doing all around us.  Embrace the beauty of His presence today.


Dear God,

Thank you for your presence.  Thank you for your blessings in my life.  Help me to be content in all things.  Help me to trust Your timing in my life.  Thank You God, that because You Love me, You will provide for me and give me the desires of my heart.  Thank you for Your Love. 

In Jesus Name, Amen

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Reviving Super Mom

I recently read an article that killed Super Mom.  She was laid to rest within the text of who I assume was a mother feeling less than par.  Underachieving her standard of what she thought it meant to be a super mom.

She went on to describe this ideal mother who fit the description of perfection.    The author of this article I could not stop reading, went on to inform us that the reach of being Super Mom would be unfulfilled so there is no use in trying.  This author prided herself on empowering moms to focus unapologetically, on their career and not to worry about going above and beyond in the mom category.  She called BS on “having it all”.

Whaaaaaat???? I do not know who gave her permission to kill Super Mom, but I am here to resurrect her.  You CAN have it all, career and family.  “Having it all” does not mean you have to “do it all”.  What’s wrong with hired help?  Why is it a sin to call for backup?    It takes a village – remember?   A real Super Mom recognizes where she needs help and seeks it.

Super Mom is not at every PTO meeting.  She yells occasionally, gets frustrated while at the grocery store, buys fast food for dinner, leaves dishes in the sink, and is a bit cranky at times.  She burns cookies and forgets permission slips.

Point is Super Mom does not mean perfect mom, when we think that it does we throw out the notion of even trying to be better than mediocre.  Super Mom is a mom that works hard to provide for her children, spends quality time with them, and instill values that will contribute to them hopefully being well rounded, responsible adults one day.

My children have eaten cake for breakfast.  My justification – I used flour, eggs and milk to make it.  That’s almost a well-balanced breakfast folks.

A couple times I worked late and did not get to tuck them in.  They were making their own school lunches at age five.  I am not perfect, never will be.  But I aim for perfection understanding that I may just get close enough to see it running in front of me.  I am okay with that, I do not want to be perfect.  Perfect is too much pressure.  But I can handle Super.

Here’s to the Super Moms who sacrifice daily for their child(ren).

Here’s to the Super Moms who work hard every day.

Here’s to the Super Moms who wards off monsters in the closet and kiss boo boos.

Here’s to the Super Moms whose eyes can reassure you and smile can comfort you.

Here’s to the Super Moms who are raising law abiding citizens in a crazy world.

Here’s to the Super Moms who Love their child(ren) unconditionally.

I can’t help but think about how God Loves us unconditionally.  If He doesn’t expect us to be perfect, why do we put such high expectations on ourselves.  In closing – To all my Super Moms, forgive yourself for being imperfect; while allowing yourself to be Loved by a perfect God.

Live on Purpose. Happy Mother’s Day!

jacquetta  

Lies

Just a thought – Why is it easier to believe a lie that hurts us, over the truth that sets us free? We’ve all done it, regardless of where we are with our Faith walk, or if we are on a Faith walk at all for that matter.

Here are a few of the common lies we believe from time to time:

 

Lie: “I am not good enough”

Truth: “I am fearfully and wonderfully made.” Psalm 139:14

“I am made in the image of God.”  Genesis 1:27a

 

I can

Lie: “I can’t _____!” (Fill in the blank)

Truth: “I can do all things through Christ.” Philippians 4:13

 

 

Lie: “I am defeated.”

Truth: “I am more than a conqueror.” Romans 8:37

“No weapon formed against me shall prosper.”  Isaiah 54:17

 

Lie: “I am unforgivable.”

Truth: “All sins have been forgiven through Jesus.” 1 John 2:12

“As far as the east is from the west, so far has He removed our sins from us.” Psalm 103:12

 

Lie: FEAR

Truth: “God has not given us a spirit of fear and timidity, but of power, love, and self-discipline.”  2 Timothy 1:7

 

Lie: “______ is impossible” (Fill in the blank)

Truth: “If you can believe, all things are possible to him who believes.”  Mark 9:23

 

Lie: “God is mad at me.”

Truth:  “God is for us, not against us” Romans 8:31

 

wooden hearts

Lie:   “God doesn’t Love me”

Truth: “God so loved the world that He gave His one and only Son, [Jesus Christ], that whoever believes in Him shall not perish, but have eternal life” John 3:16

“He (God) loves us with an everlasting love.” Jeremiah 31:3

“God told them, ‘I’ve never quit loving you and never will. Expect love, love, and more love!” Jeremiah 31:3 MSG

 

Lie: “My life has no purpose”

Truth: “Before you were formed in the womb, I knew you and appointed you.” Jeremiah 1:5

“He (God) has good plans for our lives Jeremiah 29:11

(Jesus said) “I came that they may have life and have it abundantly—a complete life full of purpose” John 10:10

 

Lie: “I’m not smart enough.”

Truth: “God has given me wisdom and power” Daniel 2:23

“If any of you lacks wisdom, he should ask God, who gives generously to all without finding fault, and it will be given to him.” James 1:5

truth

Lie: “I have to get my life right before I come to Jesus”

Truth: “All you need to come to God is to believe He exists and that He rewards those who earnestly seek Him.” Hebrews 11:6

 

Lie: “I am not good enough to go to church”

Truth: “We all fall short” Romans 3:23

“It is not the healthy who need a doctor, but the sick. I have not come to call the righteous, but sinners.” Mark 2:17

 

Lie: “I cannot be saved”

Truth: “If you confess with your mouth that Jesus is Lord, and believe in your heart that God raised Him from the dead, then you will be saved.”

prayer

Want to be saved?  Pray this prayer:

Dear Lord Jesus, I know I am a sinner, and I ask for your forgiveness. I believe you died for my sins and rose from the dead. I trust and follow you as my Lord and Savior. Guide my life and help me to do Your Will.

In Jesus name, Amen.”

 

 

Did you pray that prayer?  If so, Congratulations!  Here are your truths –

Truth: You are saved.

“If you confess with your mouth Jesus as Lord, and believe in your heart that God raised Him from the dead, you will be saved” Romans 10:9

Truth: Nothing can separate you from the Love of God.

“Neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor principalities, nor things present, nor things to come, nor powers, nor height, nor depth, nor any other created thing, will be able to separate us from the love of God, which is in Christ Jesus our Lord” Romans 8:38-39

 

Friends, be encouraged to stop believing lies and be freed by God’s truths.

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“If you continue in My word, then you are truly disciples of Mine; and you will know the truth, and the truth will make you free.” John 8:31-32

 

 

Full of Thanks

Greetings Friends.  Today I am breaking out the maternity pants!  Not because there is a bun in the metaphoric oven, but because of all the great food coming from the oven in the kitchen today! I am going to need breathing room! I do hope each of you enjoy your Thanksgiving holiday as much as I am.

Thanksgiving Feast

Thanksgiving is truly the one holiday that should be celebrated every day – minus all the overeating of course.  Afterall, we cannot take a Thanksgiving size nap every day.  But the idea of reflecting on what we are thankful for should be a daily practice.  Honestly, if I take a moment in a long day to say “thank you” it releases a power that minimizes what’s gone wrong and emphasizes the good.

In past Thanksgivings, we all stood together in a circle. One by one, member of our family said what we were thankful for. Gratitude was expressed for God, Life, Health, Family, Freedom, Home, Job, Vision, Peace, and many other blessings. The best part was acknowledging the Grace God gives us every day, that we don’t always take time to recognize.  Simply thanking God for our jobs and peace and health.

There are so many blessings that we do not say “thank you” for. Have you ever thanked God that you have fingers? Because without them it would be a bit difficult to hold that fork at dinner today. Ever say “thank you” for your eye lids? How could you sleep without them? Am I being over the top?  Maybe so but the truth is, in everything there is an opportunity to be thankful.

ThanksAs a rule of thumb I try to think about how much I would potentially complain about a negative outcome and give double that energy in gratitude.  I challenge you; in your next moment of complaining, STOP.  Find the bright side and thank God for it, no matter how small it may seem.

Today is a special day; of course it cannot be duplicated in all its grandness 365 days a year.  But I encourage us all to take the spirit of thanks throughout each day.

Thanks for reading my blog.
Enjoy your blessings!

“In every thing give thanks: for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus concerning you.” 1 Thessalonians 5:18