Your destination is straight ahead

Do you remember life before GPS? Ok, there was MapQuest (is that still a thing?) but I mean before that? Remember using a map?!

I am directionally challenged. Seriously. I rely on my GPS to get me everywhere. The worst is when it doesn’t give you enough time before you need to turn and then you hear the obnoxious….RECALCULATING. My husband often teases me about it. He says, “what if your GPS didn’t work?” I laugh and shrug. Being a woman, I would ask for directions!

It got me thinking….what if we are truly lost and have no idea where to go?  I’ve been in this situation before, not just on the road, but in life. I’ve needed direction and been scared that I would make the wrong decision. Have you? Who do you turn to when you need direction?

What if we trusted Jesus as much as we trust our GPS?

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Would you like fries with that?

A new year, a clean slate. I love it! It’s like all the chips, candy and chocolate we ever ate is gone forever. Never counted. Well, not exactly…I must admit that I am one of those people who starts eating salads and fruit on January 1st. I start flossing, and promise to do sit-ups every day. I have the best of intentions, but it’s not easy. Are you like me?

Well, the good news is that God doesn’t care about any of that. All He wants is us…all of us. Our undivided attention. Once we surrender our life to Him, we are free! We get a clean slate, no matter what day it is. Our old life is gone and we are a child of God. That sounds much easier than swearing off an occasional cookie or fighting for a parking space at the gym in January, doesn’t it?

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#Write 31 Challenge- Word of the Day: Fear

October 30 Word of the Day: Fear

Just in time for Halloween!

top_spider_factsOther than ghosts, goblins, and spiders, what are your fears? How many times have you allowed your fears to get in the way of your dreams?

In Isaiah 41, we can find the comfort that only God can provide when we are full of fear.

Don’t be afraid, for I am with you.
Don’t be discouraged, for I am your God.
I will strengthen you and help you.
I will hold you up with my victorious right hand.

Imagine a life where you fully trusted God and turned all your fears and worries to HIm. What would that look like?

#Write31Challenge- Word of the Day

October 24 Word of the Day- Appreciation

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Many times in our lives when we are faced with a difficult situation or hardship, it may feel as if God has abandoned us.

Consider the crucifixion of Jesus. When it was happening, His disciples surely felt as if God had abandoned Him. In fact, Jesus even asked God why He had forsakened Him.

It isn’t until after we have experienced a trial that we are able to see that it was part of God’s plan for us and appreciate what we went through.

Looking at the crucifixion again, it wasn’t until Jesus’ resurrection that God’s plan was made clear. I think we can all appreciate that!

Write 31 Challenge- Word of the Day Challenge

October 19 Word of the Day- Health

31 day word challenge

How well do you take care of your body? Do you exercise regularly? Do you eat fruits and vegetables every day? Do meditate or allow yourself to have down time? When was the last time you had a physical exam?

Taking care of your body is just as important as feeding your spiritual self. The two should go hand in hand!

We can see this advice in the Bible: Or didn’t you realize that your body is a sacred place, the place of the Holy Spirit? Don’t you see that you can’t live however you please, squandering what God paid such a high price for? The physical part of you is not some piece of property belonging to the spiritual part of you. God owns the whole works. So let people see God in and through your body. (Corinthians 6:20)

Write 31- Word of the Day

October 13 Word of the Day: Dependence

Dependence on God is an attitude that says, “I need God.” We are made for the purpose of receiving God into our lives and by praying to Him, we are dependent on His guidance for our life. This is what God wants from us!

31 day word challengeGod will do this, for he is faithful to do what he says, and he has invited you into partnership with his Son, Jesus Christ our Lord. 1 Corinthians 1:9 (NLT)

This is harder than it sounds. As humans, we have a tendency to want to do things our own way. This is what gets us into trouble. We can look to the Bible for proof that God wants to be a part of our life and will provide for us if we let Him:

Trust in the Lord with all your heart; do not depend on your own understanding. Proverbs 3:5

The Lord is good to those who depend on him, to those who search for him.Lamentations 3:25

I don’t know about you, but I find comfort in knowing that I have a God who wants to be a part of all that I do and want me to depend on Him when life get tough!

Write 31 Challenge- Word of the Day

October 10 Word of the Day: Trials31 day word challenge

It can be frustrating when we try our best at something and face disappointment or rejection. The Bible talks about this:

“We can rejoice, too, when we run into problems and trials, for we know that they help us develop endurance.” (Romans 5:3-5 NLT)

It’s hard to understand this when we are faced with a difficult situation…how am I supposed to rejoice when nothing is working out as I planned? We want everything on our plan, our timing. it. When things don’t work out exactly as we planned, we can find ourselves doubting God. But God knows what we need and when we need it. By trusting Him, and praying for guidance, we can develop a deeper faith. And THAT is definitely worth rejoicing!

What is faith?

My pastor gave a message about faith this weekend and it got me thinking about my idea of faith and how it has grown over the years.

As a child, I was raised in a home without religion or any mention of God. I was introduced to the idea of God when I had the opportunity to attend church with a friend after a Saturday night sleepover. I remember being in awe as I looked up at the beautiful stained glass windows and did my best to look like I fit in.Faceted_001 I asked my parents why we didn’t go to church they replied, “we don’t need that.” As I got older I was drawn to the idea of God.

A God.

My God.

I wondered, “Can he see me? Does he know my secrets? Does he really love me?” When I went to college I started searching for the answers to my questions. As I started reading the Bible, I had a lot of questions. I wanted proof that God existed. How can we be sure that Jesus was who he said he was? As I asked these questions, I would often get frustrated when the answer was, “that is faith.”

I found myself asking, “what is faith?” The dictionary definition of faith is: confidence or trust in a person or thing; a belief not based on proof.

Today I am a fully devoted Christian and I understand that faith means belief. To have faith means to know that something that can’t be seen is true. Those who have faith choose to trust that God is able and willing to do everything that He has promised us. Faithfulness is living a life that pleases God and using all that we have to please Him.

Then the way you live will always honor and please the Lord, and your lives will produce every kind of good fruit. All the while, you will grow as you learn to know God better and better. Colossians 1:10 (NLT)

As we know Jesus better, His divine power gives us everything we need for living a godly life. 2 Peter 1:3

As I have grown to learn to know God, I have seen the result of living faithfully. I am filled with joy, peace, and patience.

So on this Sunday I ask……What does the word ‘faith’ mean to you?

Late bloomer

Each winter as the snow melts and temperature gets warmer, I look forward to seeing flowers and fresh leaves grow. I like to plant bulbs and seeds and wait with anticipation for them to push through the dirt. But sometimes they don’t grow. Perhaps there was a late frost or an animal dug it up? Either way, the result can be disappointing.

There are times in life when we all feel like the flower trying to blossom. We’re on our way up (through the dirt) and then something comes along and steps on us. Whether it is job, a relationship, or personal goal that we’ve been working for, rejection, fear, and self doubt can undo all the work that we have put in.flower_under_snow_spring_20140127_1318698541

Fortunately for us, we aren’t finished when that happens. We can lean on our God and ask for help and direction. God has a plan for us all and sometimes our desires aren’t part of that plan, but he will guide us to where we should be. It may take another season and the result may look different from what we thought it would, but with our faith in God’s love, we will bloom!

2 Corinthians 12:9 “But he said to me, ‘My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.’” (NIV)

A Gift

I was having a bad day, wrestling with a tough decision, and then you knocked on my door and were holding a gift. I love gifts! It is beautifully wrapped and layered with colorful tissue paper. But as I open your “gift” I see it is full of things I don’t want or need. I lift the first layer of tissue paper and find doubt. The next layer contains fear. As I continue to search for something I need or desperately hoped for, all I see is more of the same….my unworthiness, guilt, and selfish ways. I carefully place the items back in the box, smile, and say, “Thank you.” As you leave I feel terrible. I place the gift on the table and try to ignore it. All day my eyes and thoughts wander back to it. Unable to concentrate all day, I return to the gift. I open it again and hold all the items, one at a time. As I think carefully about each item, I feel a relief was over me and can’t help but smile as I place the items back in the box. What you don’t know is that I already have a wonderful gift; the gift of God’s love.

My mom taught me to always write a thank you note, so20140604052837666 here it is:

Dear Satan,

Thank you for stopping by today with an unexpected gift. Unfortunately I must return it, as I will not be needing the items you so carefully wrapped. I have received a much nicer gift from God. He shows me love every day and warned me about you. So please don’t come by again anytime soon.

Sincerely,

God’s daughter

“Don’t fret or worry. Instead of worrying, pray. Let petitions and praises shape your worries into prayers, letting God know your concerns. Before you know it, a sense of God’s wholeness, everything coming together for good, will come and settle you down. It’s wonderful what happens when Christ displaces worry at the center of your life. Phillipians 4:6-7 (NLT)

“God can do anything, you know—far more than you could ever imagine or guess or request in your wildest dreams! He does it not by pushing us around but by working within us, his Spirit deeply and gently within us.” Ephesians 3:20-21 (NLT)