Distracted From Your Purpose

 

discipleship-response

Pesky distractions, we have all been  guilty of this at times, huh.

We set our mind to something and we promise ourselves we are gong to be productive… tomorrow. Then tomorrow comes and there is that distraction that seems so important at the time. I mean, come on now, we all know the world would fall off it’s axis if we didn’t just check the Facebook real quick, but there is no such thing as real quick, is there? Before we know it the day is spent and we say, “tomorrow,” again.  Sigh.

distractions

Social media can be a good thing, in moderation. But, too many of us are living our lives on social media, and all the while, life is passing us by. We have friends we have never even met before, it is simpler to just like a post, comment here and there, send a Happy Birthday meme (because their birthday reminder showed up in our newsfeed) and paint a picture of how well adjusted and happy (or miserable) our lives are.

So much talk lately about “fake.” Most of us are more guilty of being fake than those we point our fingers at. With all our Christian memes we post, prayer requests that are liked and then forgotten, we have seemed to be so distracted we forgot what the last words of Jesus were before He ascended into Heaven.

“Go therefore and make disciples of all the nations [help the people to learn of Me, believe in Me, and obey My words], baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit,  teaching them to observe everything that I have commanded you; and lo, I am with you always [remaining with you perpetually—regardless of circumstance, and on every occasion], even to the end of the age.”  Matthew 28:19-20

Even Paul said:

Imitate me, just as I also imitate Christ. 1 Corinthians 11:1

Too many of us are running in circles and wondering why we are not getting anywhere. We ask God what is our purpose, but we seem to not really want to invest in it. It is like looking for something grand and shunning the most simple.

It is not how many Bible verses we can quote or what church we sit in on Sundays that really makes a difference. It is about how many lives we have reached with the love of Christ. It is about relationships.

Hell would like nothing more than to keep us busy, busy with good things and time wasters, because if we are busy then we can not fulfill the real purpose we are here. We are here to share the love of Christ and to point others to Him. We are to be making disciples. If this were not so, then we would immediately die and go to Heaven as soon as we are saved. But, we didn’t die, did we? We are still here and we are an extension of Him.

The world is dying and people are lost. They are seeking answers and the enemy would happily point them to the counterfeit. We are losing people to addictions and suicide. Families are falling apart. Kids are joining gangs, babies are having babies, the innocent are being exploited, people are going to bed hungry, and the list goes on and on and on…

We have the answer! The answer is Christ!If we have the love of Christ in us, we should not be OK withholding the truth and life from a dying people.

purpose

You do not have to be a Bible scholar to share Him. It doesn’t require a certificate or degree to invite someone over for coffee, or to come alongside a young mother, or help a young man get on the right track, or sit with an elderly person.

We can not sit back any longer and say it’s the churches responsibility, because guess what… we are the Church.

As I read over what I wrote thus far, I am tempted to change it, because I really do not mean for this to come off sounding harsh. But, I am going to leave it as is, because I am a mother and I have children who live across the country, and friends all over the world, and unsaved family members, and maybe someone reading this post may be that someone who will reach out to them and help me love them into the Kingdom.

You want to know what your purpose is? Look outside, get off the internet and look outside, your purpose is someone out there. Maybe at your job, your grocery store, the gym you go to, the park you walk your dog, the homeless man down the street, they are your mission field.

If you have His Holy Spirit, then you have all you need to make a difference.

Be blessed and be a blessing.

Be Free & Stay Free 

A Message to Wives: Present & Future

woman-in-field

(I think we can all learn from this. I pray this post helps us to examine our hearts and motives, and blesses us with Godly wisdom, and prepares us for our inheritance.)

Every wise woman builds her house, but the foolish one tears it down with her own hands. Proverbs 14:1

As I was reading through Proverbs, a few verses really stuck out to me, causing me to say, “ouch, that stung,” and “yes, that is for me,” and “help me to be better, Lord”

Through scripture we can see the strong contrast between what God has to say and what the world is saying. You would really have to be living under a rock to not read and hear all the protests that are happening around the globe. What is displayed on the street, social media, Hollywood, and “news” sources, has worked it’s way into our homes.

This outcry for “rights” is really a deception. Please, before you X out of this post, or get unnerved, offended, or angry, just hear me out.

Let’s dissect Proverbs 14:1. OK?  This proverb is an answer to the questions, how does a wise woman build her house and how does a foolish one tear it down?

Let’s start with the wise woman.

A wise woman (wife) is:  encouraging, yielding, under submission, devoted, practices discretion, speaks in soft words, seeks for & focuses on the good & positive qualities in her husband, is gentle, sacrifices, humble, loving, thrifty & wise in her spending, saves to build & prepare for the future.

She will lift her husband to the Lord, not shame him by loose lips and speech to her girlfriends.  1 Peter 4:8 says, love covers a multitude of sins.  Here is an example  from Genesis 9 of what it is to cover a mans sin, to not shame him and back him in a corner.

Ham, the father of Canaan, saw [by accident] the nakedness of his father, and [to his father’s shame] told his two brothers outside. So Shem and Japheth took a robe an
d put it on both their shoulders, and walked backwards and covered the nakedness of their father; their faces were turned away so that they did not see their father’s nakedness. 
When Noah awoke from his wine [induced stupor], he knew what his younger son [Ham] had done to him. (Click HERE to read more)

A wise woman knows that to submit to her husband is to submit to the Lord. She trusts in the Lord, knowing the Lord is able to change the hearts of man. She makes her concerns known to her husband, but she does not beat him up with it, or stress him, or expect failure, because she will plead her cause to God, knowing He hears and He is able to direct the footsteps of her husband and will preserve her. Even if her husband is not a Christian, she trusts the Lord. She knows to serve prov31and honor her husband, she is doing it as unto the Lord, and through her faith her house hold will be saved.

She also knows the power of her words. She guards her lips. Death and life are in the power of the tongue, and those who love it and indulge it will eat its fruit and bear the consequences of their words. – Proverbs 18:21  She knows her battle is not with her husband and no amount of nagging, manipulating, pushing, or complaining is going to save her marriage. If you want to know where the real battle is click HERE.

What does a foolish woman do?

drip
Proverbs 27:15-16

A foolish woman (wife) focuses on her husbands weakness and what she perceives is wrong. She complains, murmurs, practices indiscretion, is fault finding, lies, stubborn, withholds her affection from her husband, is prideful, acts on foolish impulses, spends and does not save, wants immediate gratification, demands her rights, and is not submissive to the leadership of her husband (nor does she understand what Godly submission is).

She does not encourage her husband, she tears him down by reminding him of his past failures. Through her badgering, she boxes him in a corner, and gives him no room or desire to change any negative behavior, because she does not trust in the Lord.

She seeks and expects her fulfillment to come from her husband, not understanding only an intimate relationship with the Lord will fulfill and meet her desires.

She blames her husband for her insecurities and she seeks others to stand in agreement with her. You can recognize this woman through her words and posts on social media, she is the one who is usually shouting about her rights, her woes, professes her own strength, complains about her husband, and participates in men bashing. She carries her personal life and marital relationship in the open for all to see as a war trophy, to seek pity and platitudes from others who are singing the death rattle.

if-the-shoe-fits
Does this sound harsh?

Proverbs 14:17 instructs us to go from the presence of a foolish and self-confident man (woman), for you will not find knowledge of his (her) lips. (emphasis mine)

Women are fools to follow what the world says about who we, as women and wives, are suppose to be and do. The world is constantly trying to defend and promote themselves, by seeking to usurp the mans (husbands) role and authority.

Here is a warning to such foolish women: To seek to usurp, not acknowledge authority and position from the Lord, is to ultimately buck and fight God’s authority and in so doing, you are rejecting His favor. 

God has given us each a gift. We both, man (husband) and woman (wife) have strengths AND weakness. We do not become strong by kicking our men (husbands) where they are weak. We are stronger together!

This is how valuable and precious we are in the sight of the Lord. 

He who finds a [true and faithful] wife finds a good thing
And obtains favor and approval from the Lord. Proverbs 18:22

An excellent woman [one who is spiritual, capable, intelligent, and virtuous], who is he who can find her? Her value is more precious than jewels and her worth is far above rubies or pearls. Proverbs 31:10

Sisters, I am sharing this with you, because God has a plan and purpose for us, as women. He has a plan and a purpose for our men (husbands & fathers). He has a plan and a purpose for our marriages.

We must not remain naive, thinking it is suppose to be always easy. You have the world against you, but do not fret, stress, be scared, or look for a way out, because God is for you!

Maybe you are in a lonely marriage and it is teetering on the edge. Maybe you are holding on to the last little thread. Maybe you feel like you do not love your husband anymore and maybe it has been a long time since you felt love from your husband. Please, please, please, recognize and remember, the covenant you made with your husband, before the Lord, is not based on “feeling” and “emotion.” It is a commitment.

If you find yourself crying yourself to sleep at night. If you feel you have no other way than out. I encourage you, get off the phone with your girlfriends, deactivate your facebook account, quit murmuring under your breath, and stop looking for fault and blame. Instead, take it to God. Give it ALL to Him, your hope, your heartache, your disappointment, your anger, your fear, and just trust Him.

You do not have to burn your bra, posts angry feminist memes, hold up signs, and march in protest. Instead, remember, the God Who moved on Pharaoh to let His people go, is the same God Who will move in your husbands heart. You may just find, the more you lift your husband to God, the more love God will give you for your husband.

1 Peter 3:6: just as Sarah obeyed Abraham [following him and having regard for him as head of their house], calling him lord. And you have become her daughters if you do what is right without being frightened by any fear [that is, being respectful toward your husband but not giving in to intimidation, nor allowing yourself to be led into sin, nor to be harmed].

Every woman needs a Naomi in their life. Naomi is a spiritually mature woman who will speak life and wisdom into you. She is a great mentor and prayer partner. If you do not already have a mentor, I encourage you to find one.

Repent, ask forgiveness for murmuring and complaining, and ask His Holy Spirit to lead you and I promise, because His promise is always true, He will rise and renew your spirit, your heart, and your marriage. You can not do this on your own, but with God… ALL THINGS ARE POSSIBLE.

Now, get out of the world and get on your knees before God. Build your legacy, let your light shine, and may your marriage be hell’s worse nightmare!

I welcome any questions, comments, and especially testimonies.

God Bless You!

good-woman

Be Free & Stay Free 

Clouded By Insecurity

mind-prison
Prisoner of the mind

 

Faith is the substance of things hoped for, but not yet seen. Insecurity is the substance of things dreaded/feared, seen or not.

Our minds are always on. We have constant thoughts. Sometime the thoughts flash without too much consideration. Sometimes a thought grabs us and we linger. When we catch ourselves lingering on a thought (or an imagination), the attention we give to it causes a reaction. If the thought is positive, then the reaction is positive. The same is true for negative, fearful thoughts; if we dwell there, then the effect is negative.

If we give voice to our thoughts, then our thoughts become action and will produce fruit. Scripture says there is power of life or death in our tongues. If we meditate long enough on a thought (germinate the seed), it will eventually come out of our mouth and the fruit of the seed will grow.

Fear is the breeding ground of insecurity. I do not believe we were created with a fear gene; rather it was learned through negative experience. Since we know we were created in the image of God, and God is not fear and confusion, then we can be certain that fear is not from God. Therefore, since fear is not from God, we do not have to accept it.

Insecurity has been the demise of many relationships, opportunities, and dreams. Insecurity has silent partners called “what if” and “yea, but.” What if and yea, but has a relative named “remember when.”  They are counterfeit imitators and reside in the mind of reasoning; they are enemies of faith and they set up camp in depression and discontentment.

Our minds are conditioned by experience; starting from childhood.

The brain contains billions of nerve cells arranged in patterns that coordinate thought, emotion, behavior, movement and sensation. A complicated highway system of nerves connects your brain to the rest of your body, so communication can occur in split seconds. (CLICK HERE)  Truly a fascinating creation!  I am not a scientist, so I wont even attempt to explain the intricacies of the human mind, but I do know our brains are able to store information we have learned, through experience; intentional and unintentional. It is like a Rolodex, when faced with situations our mind quickly goes through the old files and says, “Aha! I have been here before!” and then it triggers the response based on previous experience. To the unregenerate mind, this can lead to a road filled with debris of broken relationships, dead dreams, and wounded souls.

Here is an example of what I am talking about:

I grew up with an angry father. In my home it was like constantly walking on egg shells, because we never knew when his  temper would spark.

walking-on-eggshells

This experience has caused me to have fear of confrontations. To avoid confrontations I would operate under the fight or flight mode; usually it was flight. If I was around anyone having an argument, or heated discussion, I would exit quickly, because it made me feel very uncomfortable and fearful. Or if I sensed someone was not in a “good” mood and they were silent, I would become tense and begin to mentally look for a place to take cover when there was an explosion.

nuclear-explosion

And because I not only grew up in a home with an angry parent, I was also rejected by my father. As you can imagine, as a child I was torn and confused between the two fears; I was afraid of doing or saying something that would cause his wrath and at the same time, I so wanted to please him and to be accepted by him, incurring a double whammy, his wrath of anger and his rejection.

Fast forward into my adult years…

Even as an adult, I still had to contend with that fearful child inside of me. I was like a turtle, I would walk and talk confidently, but as soon as I sensed “trouble,” I would retreat into my shell. The end result would cause even more fear and insecurity. Grief! What a vicious cycle, huh? How many failed relationships and lost opportunities must we have before we understand the past does not dictate our future?

Just like Pavlov’s dogs, we have triggers.  The triggers may not be bells, it could be a word, a look, a place; or anything that brings into remembrance the thing that caused us pain. Sometimes the triggers can go unnoticed, we may just find ourselves feeling or acting a certain way and not understand why. Have you ever done or said something and then later think, “Wow! Where did that come from?”

Let’s use marriage and remarriage as an example. I read the rate of divorce in a second marriage is higher than a first marriage. Again, I am no expert, but I submit the reason for this is because people enter into other relationships before being healed from the soul wounds. What we do not see, is while we are packing the boxes and suitcase to move on, we are also carrying with us the disappointment, anger, and rejection. Then when we meet someone else, fall in love, get married, and set up a new home, we are unpacking the luggage we brought with us from the past. Inevitably there will be a trigger, our fear of the past happening again causes insecurity, and we act on the fear.

Our minds begin to fixate on the what ifs and the yea, buts. You know, the “what if I made a mistake and he/she isn’t the one?” Or “what if he/she does the same thing my ex did?” Or “Yea, I know this is what they said, but they really meant this.” The past plays over and over again in our minds like a broken record and we get stuck there. Meanwhile, the present looks at you, scratches its head and moves on without you.

There is only one way to get off the treadmill of insecurity and that is, faith. But, to truly have faith you must be perfected in love. What do I mean? Glad you asked.

1 John 4:18 says, There is no fear in love [dread does not exist]. But perfect (complete, full-grown) love drives out fear, because fear involves [the expectation of divine] punishment, so the one who is afraid [of God’s judgment] is not perfected in love [has not grown into a sufficient understanding of God’s love].

There is freedom in Gods love. Knowing His love, goes further than just quoting scripture. A person can know the Bible word for word, can even be a Christian, and still be bound to fear and insecurity. Only intimately knowing God the Father, through Jesus the Son, can we walk by faith and security, knowing our destiny does not rely on other people or things. Only through an intimate relationship with Him can we believe that no matter what, this will work for my good. When we know His love (experientially), then we do not have to be fearful and insecure.

The more intimately we know Him, the more we are conformed into His image and our hearts and minds are regenerated, made new. Then we do not make decisions based on the “what ifs” and “yea, buts.” We are able to discern the will of the Father and act on it. We are not moved by what our eyes see, we are moved by faith, knowing it is the substance of all things hoped for, yet not seen. The more we are like Him, our thoughts line up with His thoughts, and our hopes are in sync with His promise.

christlike

The more we trust in His love and care, the more we are able to extend it to others. When we grasp His mercy in forgiveness and His grace , then we are able to extend that same mercy in forgiveness and grace to others. And this, my friend, is where true freedom is found.

Forgiveness is not denial that something happened. It is not excusing someones actions that has caused you hurt. Forgiveness releases the person to God and frees you from the ties of the past. It frees your mind from the lies that try to hold you captive to the prison of defeat, fear, and insecurity. Forgiveness releases you to walk in your purpose, your destiny, and lets you experience real healthy relationships.

So, you see, there is no need to be insecure. God has you and He loves you. He is here, and His heart is that you believe Him and receive His love to the fullest measure. He has been here all along.

Be Free & Stay Free

 

Under Fire

soldiers

“Cover me! I am going in!”

“Go! I got your back!”

This is the beauty of relationship. For this reason, relationships are important, to watch over each other and cover each other. Everyone has strengths and weaknesses. When one is weak, then the other stands up and covers them with their strength.

Two are better than one because they have a more satisfying return for their labor;  for if either of them falls, the one will lift up his companion. But woe to him who is alone when he falls and does not have another to lift him up. Ecclesiastes 4:9-10 

If you haven’t figured it out by now, we are in a war. If you are a follower of Christ the attack is intense and personal. It is a spiritual war and the enemy, our adversary, is relentless and cunning. He uses gorilla tactics and his attacks can sometimes be so subtle you won’t even recognize where the attack is coming from. He will misdirect your attention, cause confusion and offense, then before you know it you may find yourself fighting your ally.

Marriages go down in flames from “friendly fire” when they do not recognize who the real enemy is.  

Again, if two lie down together, then they keep warm; but how can one be warm alone? And though one can overpower him who is alone, two can resist him. A cord of three strands is not quickly broken. Ecclesiastes 4:11-12 

Who is the three chord strand? It is husband, wife, and the Holy Spirit. For the marriage to be strong, Christ must be in the center. Not only the center, but the foundation. Both husband and wife must be firmly rooted in Him.

The attack always starts in the mind. The enemy will throw things at you from without and then try to speak to you from within. He will attempt to keep you busy focusing on the “issues” until the whispers of his accusations will begin to drown out the voice of Holy Spirit. Rather than renewing your strength in Him, you will grow weary and you will look to place blame on someone or some thing.

You are not fighting a visible enemy. Your husband/wife is not your enemy.

For our struggle is not against flesh and blood [contending only with physical opponents], but against the rulers, against the powers, against the world forces of this [present] darkness, against the spiritual forces of wickedness in the heavenly (supernatural) places. Ephesians 6:12 

You have a battle plan 

warfare
The weapons of your warfare are POWERFUL! 

The marriage covenant is until death (not a death sentence). Love lays His life down for His beloved. You may never be required to take a bullet for your husband/wife, or stand in front of a train, but you are required to lay down and put to death:

  • Pride
  • Selfish Ambitions
  • Un-Forgiveness
  • Bitterness
  • Anger
  • Offense

Allow the Holy Spirit to breathe life into you and fill you with His fruit of love, joy, peace, forbearance, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control.

It is in the small things that strengthen your marriage. The small daily acts of kindness towards each other nurture a lasting, healthy, honoring marriage. It is dangerous to neglect each other. Neglect is an open door for the enemy to wreak havoc. When you understand your spouse is a precious gift, and the representation of Christs love for His church, you will understand that laying your life down is actually living and glorifies God. When two become one, and Christ is the center, and you love each other and serve each other as unto the Lord, then you will experience life and life abundantly in your marriage. You will experience the peace and joy of knowing that no matter what the world has to throw at you, together you will be just fine.

Practice these words:

  • I love you
  • I am sorry, please forgive me
  • I forgive you
  • Let’s pray

Cover each other in prayer, with understanding and patience. Worship together and serve together. Then when that enemy comes with his attack you know you have each others back.  Just because this is war, you do not have to be a casualty. You have the victory. Stand strong, hold your position, and take the camp.

Be Free & Stay Free 

1 Corinthian 13 & Marriage

faith-hope-love

controllinghusband
Don’t break her spirit

If I speak with the tongues of men and of angels, but have not love [for others growing out of God’s love for me], then I have become only a noisy gong or a clanging cymbal [just an annoying distraction]. And if I have the gift of prophecy [and speak a new message from God to the people], and understand all mysteries, and [possess] all knowledge; and if I have all [sufficient] faith so that I can remove mountains, but do not have love [reaching out to others], I am nothing. If I give all my possessions to feed the poor, and if I surrender my body to be burned, but do not have love, it does me no good at all.

Love endures with patience and serenity, love is kind and thoughtful, and is not jealous or envious; love does not brag and is not proud or arrogant.  It is not rude; it is not self-seeking, it is not provoked [nor overly sensitive and easily angered]; 

Angry woman screaming against her husband with his face deformed
Don’t dishonor him

it does not take into account a wrong endured.  It does not rejoice at injustice, but rejoices with the truth [when right and truth prevail].  Love bears all things [regardless of what comes], believes all things [looking for the best in each one], hopes all things [remaining steadfast during difficult times], endures all things [without weakening].

 

Love never fails [it never fades nor ends].

 

But as for prophecies, they will pass away; as for tongues, they will cease; as for the gift of special knowledge, it will pass away.  For we know in part, and we prophesy in part [for our knowledge is fragmentary and incomplete].  But when that which is complete and perfect comes, that which is incomplete and partial will pass away. When I was a child, I talked like a child, I thought like a child, I reasoned like a child; when I became a man, I did away with childish things.  For now [in this time of imperfection] we see in a mirror dimly [a blurred reflection, a riddle, an enigma], but then [when the time of perfection comes we will see reality] face to face. Now I know in part [just in fragments], but then I will know fully, just as I have been fully known [by God].

cps-4

And now there remain: faith [abiding trust in God and His promises], hope [confident expectation of eternal salvation], love [unselfish love for others growing out of God’s love for me], these three [the choicest graces]; but the greatest of these is love.

 

Be Free & Stay Free

 

 

What Are You Searching For?

Man-searching

We look high and low for something to numb us or someone to fulfill us.

Addictions come in many forms. Drugs, alcohol, relationships, impulse shopping, social media, etc…

Because there is that something in each of us that is reserved for Him. He planted it in us. Because He desires an intimate relationship with each of us. He loves us that much and He is a jealous God, that is why nothing or no one can fill that void we have. He said it is for Him.

The beauty of this is…. what we can not do for ourselves, He can and will do it for us.

Look as much as you want… but until you call His Name, Jesus, you will never find what you are looking for.

Come home to Him. He loves you!

Nobody Greater (click here)

Be Free & Stay Free 

His Beloved

Sad-girl-crying-for-her-love

I read a blog today… her heart was broken. She so eloquently articulated her vulnerability…

Right now, at this very moment, there are people crying, feeling alone and so small. It makes me sad, because I have experienced that deep grief before, I think we all have.

If you are feeling that way now, as if your world has came crashing down on you and it hurts to breathe and the thought of repeating this all over again tomorrow makes you want to go to sleep and stay asleep… can I say something to you?

You are beautiful! You are still the you you were before your heart broke. I know you look around and everything seems so dark right now, but trust me, the sun will shine again. Don’t beat yourself up, allow yourself to grieve, but don’t stay there. Don’t shut yourself off from the people who care about you.

Take a deep breath, yes, that’s it… now breathe.

You are not alone. You are not invisible. You are not unlovable. You will love again and you will be loved. But first, love yourself, enjoy yourself, appreciate the very unique wonderful you that you are. I know you don’t feel like it now, but you will. One moment, one hour, one day at a time.

Jesus-HH

There is one thing I know for certain, there is a true Lover of your soul and He calls you beloved. His love is the staying kind, the forever kind, the never leave you kind…

Draw near to God and He will draw near to you.

Be Free & Stay Free