House Of Cards


“It’s like gambling somehow. You go out for a night of drinking and you don’t know where your going to end up the next day. It could work out good or it could be disastrous. It’s like the throw of the dice.” -Jim Morrison

I remember bright lights and the smell of stale smoke,
I remember the noise of the casino and thinking life was a joke.
Drugs in my veins and the taste of vodka on my lips,
The devil had me right at his fingertips.

Always was with a man and had cards in my hand,
I was terribly naive then.
I was gambling with my very own life and losing big time to sin.
One more drink, one more hit, one more time the enemy pleaded,
Dangling my sanity right in front of me and saying this is what I needed.

“In all things there are three choices: Yes, No and no choice, except in this — I either choose the truth or I am deceit.” -Unknown

“As in the rankest soil the most beautiful flowers are grown, so in the dark soil of poverty the choicest flowers of humanity have developed and bloomed.” -James Allen

I wanted so badly just to hear God’s voice,
Instead drugs had silenced Him and it was me who made that choice.

“Now listen! Today I am giving you a choice between life and death, between prosperity and disaster. (Deuteronomy 30:15 NLT)

God, He never left me…
Not even once did He let me go.
Even when I made it clear that away from Him is where I’d rather go.

It was 8 years ago when I chose to surrender my life to Lord completely,
Stories like these are only part of my testimony.
I have never left Him again,
Not even once have I let Him go.
I have made it my life’s work to make sure others know.
There is a way through the muck and the miles,
A relief from the suffering that robs our smiles.
Choose wisely and you will avoid these scars,
Collapse is inevitable when building your house of cards.

This is the message we heard from Jesus and now declare to you: God is light, and there is no darkness in him at all. So we are lying if we say we have fellowship with God but go on living in spiritual darkness; we are not practicing the truth (1 John 1:5 – 1:6 NLT)

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The Shape Of My Heart


 

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Let the lowly brother glory in his exaltation, but the rich in his humiliation, because j as a flower of the field he will pass away. For no sooner has the sun risen with a burning heat than it withers the grass; its flower falls, and its beautiful appearance perishes. So the rich man also will fade away in his pursuits.

James 1:9-11 NKJV

tina turner quote

After I read the quote above , by Tina Turner, I had the very strong desire to actually take an inventory of the things/people in my life., (just to be certain that they were good for me and not in some way hindering my progression.

I thought about it awhile and could not come up with anything or anyone, literally, that made me unhappy. I figured surely there has to be something wrong some where, but thanks be to God, no. There wasn’t anything. I considered myself blessed and went about my day.

Later on in the afternoon, that quote popped back into my head like one of those very annoying song lyrics you have stuck on repeat in your head even though you don’t know the words. I sat down and took another look at the blank list I had attempted to create and realized there was someone I had failed to inventory. I could not believe I did not think of her right off the bat! The only person who gets the best of me when I am down and the only person who has the ability to trip me when I am up… ME!

 

The reality of all this quickly struck a nostalgic chord on my heart. Immediately I was taken back to my childhood. I recalled when I was truly care-free, unashamed, and free. These feelings reminded me of the child-like way in which the Lord stresses we behave, even in adulthood. The way we relied on our parents with complete abandonment of fear as children should be no different than how we rely on Jesus when we are all grown up.

The birds, the insects, the helpless and even the trees, all are perfect examples of what the peace of having Jesus looks like. As adults we no longer require our parents to make our decisions for us and with this freedom to decide comes our freedom to deny.
We now are able to put aside the advice, the care and the power our parents so we can make a way on our own. Just because we can, does not mean we should abandon the instruction of our parents. Same concept applies to our relationship with God. We want the freedom so badly, but what do we actually need freedom from? Now that I am older, I can say the only things my parents gave me were chances and moments to enjoy the time I had, free of all the responsibilities they knew one day I would ultimately also carry myself.

 

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bear swings

 

 

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The whole idea the Lord put on my heart to share is this : We are the only ones responsible for making the correct choices in manifesting a great life for ourselves. He is very much there to guide and help us to be the best we can be, just like our parents, regardless if we are 10 or 100.

Do not allow others or even your ideas of being happy lead to unnecessary places simply because we are able to decide . We have the ability, and the right to be happy, successful and very much free of worry on our own, but really all we are fighting to be is on our own. It is not necessary to desire freedom when it is already ours. Like the flowers wither without the nourishment of the soil, we too get weak without the spiritual nourishment God provides.

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God wants us to be happy, to be healthy, to be free. We all need little reminders sometimes that while we feel we are doing so much on our own, looking back on it as we grow up, we realize we very much are not alone and we can feel, for even just a minute, that peace we did as kids if we allow ourselves to trust Him. Be blessed kids!

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Stranded: Survival of the Fittest


God is waiting eagerly to respond with new strength to each little act of self-control, small disciplines of prayer, feeble searching after him. And his children shall be filled if they will only hunger and thirst after what he offers.” –Richard Holloway

 

 

The Lord has taught me a few different things this week, but I have noticed that fear has been the common denominator of each lesson. This post is what I took away from the subject and hope it reaches some of your hearts who may be going through a season of fear or insecurity.

 

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I have talked a lot about fear both here at My Message and on my on line radio show Turning Your Mess Into Your Message, but when the opportunity of addressing the issue presents itself I take it.

We are very much loved by a powerful and protective God. He asks very little of us yet paid a very big price for us and our salvation. We should acknowledge Him first in all things, be obedient when hearing His instruction and constant in our application of the wisdom He provides so that we may share it with those who need and deserve to know the power of His love is for them and everyone. The Lord showed me of course, the desert to illustrate the point. We get caught up in and with things that seduce us and cause us to start seeing things which do not really exist. Such mirages are used by the enemy to take us deeper into the desert of our lives only to leave us lost there stranded and scared to death we can’t get back. You all remember 40 days and 40 nights as well as the enemy trying to run the same game on Jesus in the wilderness!

It is so important to know that no one is perfect and God knows when you’re going to get a bit lost sometimes. God does not expect us to be perfect, but He has given us the tools needed to better our lives. He teaches us daily through His Word, has blessed us with the ability to pray and communicate with Him and has promised that no matter how deep the waters or big the desert, we are with Him. Do not get stuck on stupid when the enemy baits you with false fear.

James 1

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“Any existence deprived of freedom is a kind of death.” -Gen Michel Aoun

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pray

A particular song has really resonated with my spirit this week and while I was writing this post. Oceans, by Hillsong United, is featured below for you to hear. The lyrics are also provided because they beautifully express to you the main idea behind this message and the concept of living boldly in your faith. We need to put serious thought into the roles each of us play during our time here and be confident that God is with us at ALL times. He is preparing us for any and every thing the enemy may try to use to keep us from peace and keep us in pieces.

Oceans

You call me out upon the waters
The great unknown where feet may fail
And there I find You in the mystery
In oceans deep
My faith will stand

And I will call upon Your name
And keep my eyes above the waves
When oceans rise
My soul will rest in Your embrace
For I am Yours and You are mine

Your grace abounds in deepest waters
Your sovereign hand
Will be my guide
Where feet may fail and fear surrounds me
You’ve never failed and You won’t start now

So I will call upon Your name
And keep my eyes above the waves
When oceans rise
My soul will rest in Your embrace
For I am Yours and You are mine

Spirit lead me where my trust is without borders
Let me walk upon the waters
Wherever You would call me
Take me deeper than my feet could ever wander
And my faith will be made stronger
In the presence of my Savior

I will call upon Your Name
Keep my eyes above the waves
My soul will rest in Your embrace
I am Yours and You are mine

water

wipe

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Please Be A Guest On My Message Radio!


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Hi and God bless to all of you reading and supporting My Message!

Many of you are aware that I have extended My Message to online radio due to it’s reach to over 100 countries in sharing God’s love by the sharing my testimony.  I am so humbled to be able to simply share the ways God  has turned my mess into my message and take His love to the world.

We all have a story which is intended to be told. We all have struggles, trials, and obstacles which God uses to teach us, shape our character, and give us opportunities to grow. He is so needed in these days and I am hoping those of you who are a part of my journey thus far will step out and give others an account of how great our God is and how much He loves each and everyone by being a guest on My Message Radio!

I am all about love, respect, truth, and faith! As men and women of God we are to be applying our learning experiences and walk with the Lord in our daily lives by witnessing to others! I am not the only one who has a past which is being used by God to give others a future or a hope. I know as a unit of positivity, passion, and peace we can together keep taking God to those who may have lost their way.

If you have a testimony you would like to share along the lines of how you have experienced the love and safety of God firsthand, are affiliated with a cause/business which brings faith/hope/healing to others, or have simply been blessed my My Message/My Message Radio and would be willing to share how God is working in your life, *please fill out the form below to be scheduled as a guest on my radio show* :  Turning Your Mess Into Your Message

I am excited to hear from you all and pray this is an opportunity you can use to let the world know who you are, about your causes, projects, or passions, and most importantly, give God’s goodness a voice and the chance to be embraced by others.

The show airs live every Thursday from 3:30 – 4pm PT  and I will be using the form below to schedule those interested and get in touch with them further. Each week I read a blog post from right here at My Message and discuss the key topic with listeners. I have a musical interlude half way through  and when I have a guest on air, I interview them the last half of the show. Such a fun, easy-going and effective way to get to know one another in faith and friendship!

You can visit the show’s homepage by clicking on the link My Message Radio above to hear past episodes, support my efforts by following the show, and see if you would want to take advantage of the opportunity to show others the love of God as well as what you are doing to make a positive difference in the world professionally/personally.

BE BLESSED, BE THE BEST, BE YOU.

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Relapse: The Familiar Fall


A man should never put on his best trousers when he goes out to battle for freedom and truth. – Henrik Ibsen

A human being has so many skins inside, covering the depths of the heart. We know so many things, but we don’t know ourselves! Why, thirty or forty skins or hides, as thick and hard as an ox’s or bear’s, cover the soul. Go into your own ground and learn to know yourself there.” -Meister Eckhart

Faces covered in mud, knees scraped and covered in blood.
Minds spinning like a DJ, while our focus fades away.
The way we are left when we run before we should,
The way we refuse to listen even though we could.
Groove slam work it back, one slip up and our world’s off track.
Where was our reverence when the hunger returned?
Why did we choose to repeat the lessons already learned?
Oh that’s right, we are but fools,
Dangle disaster in front of us and our mouths drool.
So much grace God, so much time,
Yet here we go playing ourselves one more time.
Help us to stop this track on repeat,
The melody of our old selves and our defeat.
With eyes full of tears, our ears are closed,
To your wisdom and to you telling us how not to end up below.
Tricky is the trap and we waltz right in,
Only to have You come and untangle us once again.
Help us to fall, but into Your peace,
To free us from the enemy’s grip only You can release.
Groove slam work it back, seek You first so we don’t relapse.
-Erica D

But You, Oh Lord, are a shield for me, My Glory and the One who lifts up my head. I cried to the Lord with my voice, and He heard me from His holy hill.

Psalm 3:3-4

I will both lie down in peace, and sleep; For You alone, O Lord, make me dwell in safety.

Psalm 4:8

Song Lyrics to the featured video of Freedom by Josh Garrels

Professional or beginner doesn’t matter
Every sinner is a prisoner in a body that is subject to time
Now my entwined mind tries to form a straight line
Not like twisted scoliosis of the spinal chord

Construct
Cross eyed carpenters are cuttin’ crooked lines
Can’t construct
Man-made shrines when the winds and the water move sands of time

Many minds on a deadline yet live life like a live wire
I’m not tired!
Of blood and fire
Spirit’s moving higher than the green grass ever lifted me

Spirit’s moving higher…
Than anything else ever lifted you
Mm see

We got spirituality
It’s living in us like one in three
Injustice is concerning me
In the non-linear eternity
I’m speaking paradoxically
But you can nod your head now when you understand me-e-e-ee…

This is for my free men
Whose backs wont bend in the lions den
Now with their eyes on the ending

This is for my free women!
They fight with their love
The bearers of our children

Free men whose backs wont bend in the lions den
Now with their eyes on the ending

This is for my free women
They fight with their love
The bearers of our children

We shine like lights exposing
What lies underneath decomposing
Unearth those chains that are rusted
My sweet Lord is that what I trusted in?
That sin? that tomfoolery? ugh!
What it is, is mental jewelry that I adorned myself with

The enemy’s gifts the man-made myths the ignorant bliss
Of marijuana spliffs and alcoholic fifths
I got so sick and tired of it

Delivered and redeemed
By Christ I mean
It’s time to start livin’
And get a reason for the rhyme

I don’t wanna be dead-wrong on the deadline
Standing on the dark side and all out of time…
Like a blind pantomime’s fantasize
Climb up his own ladder to the sunshine

Nothin’s mine
That hasn’t been given
No ones alive here
That hasn’t been risen
For 19 years i was trapped in a prison

Feeding my escape by means of derision
But every man-made attempt just failed
When trapped in a jail
Of my own guilt shame and iniquity

I was looking for freedom
How’d I find freedom?

Oh! oh freedom…
From all of this

He said believe
He said believe

Who are you telling me to belei-e-eve… yea
‘said I’m the Christ

Oh!
…He said I’m the Christ

So i believed.

Freedom!

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Spiritual Eclipse: One Foot In The World


light-vs-dark

There is a light that lives peacefully in a town of darkness. A candle that burns happily in it’s own company while surrounded by show stoppers and candle wax wickedness. The flame of our spirit continues to fiercely flicker, not a bit intimidated by the uncertainty the darkness brings.

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Each of us has a very rich nature and can look at things objectively, from a distance, and at the same time can have something more personal to say about them. I am trying to look at the world, and at myself, from many different points of view. I think many poets have this duality.
Wislawa Szymborska

While love kindles the fire of our spirit, God tirelessly protects it from burning itself out and from the winds of change always trying to catch it off guard. The light respects the need for it’s drab counter part, but the dark grows increasingly irritated by the sparkle constantly in it’s eye. Eventually it devises a plan to smother the spirit resulting in what I call a spiritual eclipse.
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Jesus continued, “You are from below; I am from above. You belong to this world; I do not. That is why I said that you will die in your sins; for unless you believe that I AM who I claim to be, you will die in your sins.” “Who are you?” they demanded.
Jesus replied, “The one I have always claimed to be.” -John 8:23-25(NLT)

Duality. I think of it more as complexity. Some say it is a dilemma, but in reality it is war. For everything that is there must also be that which is not. Light and dark, good and evil, faith and fear, God and the enemy. It is impossible to have one without the other and as children of God living in the world, we are prime hosts to internally feed conflict and confusion.

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For God, who said, “Let there be light in the darkness,” has made this light shine in our hearts so we could know the glory of God that is seen in the face of Jesus Christ. – 2 Cor. 4:6(NLT)

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We must realize the light burning inside each of us is that of the spirit of God! There is nothing which can separate us from His protection or warmth of His love. We are all created to face the same challenge which is duality of self and spirit. We all have to try our hardest to burn brightly and confidently in spirit during constant worldly blackouts masked as trial. I can personally tell you the struggle to see in the pitch black of being unemployed is exhausting. If I simply allow God to work instead of always trying to figure things out, I would be led by His light instead of fumbling in necessarily over every obstacle the enemy places in my path to prosperity. The blockages to my blessings are my own reactions to trial and fear. To believe is to receive and it is not possible to believe God and live in fear of the enemy at the same time. We usually sabatoge our prosperity simply because we waste time trying to understands with our finite minds what God only could manifest.

For beautiful eyes, look for the good in others; for beautiful lips, speak only words of kindness; and for poise, walk with the knowledge that you are never alone.
Audrey Hepburn

So many of us want to progress, but refuse to change moving forward. That is not how it works. We must be looking confidently ahead and be willing to surrender all fear and whatever else we are asked to by God to leave behind in order to walk into His will for us.

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God is the same today, tomorrow, and always despite our constant changing. He will always light our way as long as we do not block His plans out with our own. We remain in the shadow of a self created spiritual eclipse.

The enemy will use every trouble you can imagine to make you forget the peace that God has already given to you with Jesus. Get behind the light and in front of your destiny which God has promised. Embrace what you go through and who you are for the Kingdom. Believe Him when He tells you He loves you in life and In death. You are forever protects and do not have a need to fear.

Allow the shadows to shade you , but never allow them to fade you. Be brave, be blessed, burn bright!

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Trouble


“Therefore I tell you, do not worry about your life, what you will eat or drink; or about your body, what you will wear. Is not life more than food, and the body more than clothes? Look at the birds of the air; they do not sow or reap or store away in barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not much more valuable than they? Can any one of you by worrying add a single hour to your life? Matthew 6:25-27

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The image above features one of the most frequently asked questions of our day. Whether it is in choosing which freeway we take, what we eat for lunch, or what we believe, we most always ask the question “What If?” in the midst of our decisions. The problem is more evident than the solution when we ask such a question. We are doubting, pessimistic, and hardened to begin with, by adding our own personal fears to the list we are certainly doomed.

The only things which inhibit us from living out our God appointed destinies are our own unhealthy preoccupations with trivial things and in unrealistic circumstances. MONEY, POWER, SUCCESS. It is unfortunate to see the lengths some people will go to achieve one or all of the above. What is even more unfortunate is knowing none of the above will really get you anywhere. Sure, in the world, we are conditioned to think the opposite, but in our faith we are taught otherwise. Each of the things we place higher than God will inevitably be our downfall. What if tomorrow does not come? Will you be so worried about the things that slowly eat away at your happiness on a daily basis? What if heaven does exist? Will you be so concerned about your bank account or how many likes your Facebook page has?

It would seem that Our Lord finds our desires not too strong, but too weak. We are half-hearted creatures, fooling about with drink and sex and ambition when infinite joy is offered us, like an ignorant child who wants to go on making mud pies in a slum because he cannot imagine what is meant by the offer of a holiday at the sea. We are far too easily pleased. C. S. Lewis

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Life is full of questions, but what if you are asking the wrong ones? Instead of worrying that you are not or that you have not, believe God when He promises He will not! He will not give you so much that you can’t handle, He will not allow the trivial problems of the temporal to stop you from becoming who you were born to be. There are no what if’s when it comes to God. The only question is when the blessings He has prepared for you will manifest. Know He already has a solution to your trouble and believe He has the power to overcome your worry!
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But whatever were gains to me I now consider loss for the sake of Christ. What is more, I consider everything a loss because of the surpassing worth of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord, for whose sake I have lost all things. I consider them garbage, that I may gain Christ – Phil 3:7-8

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“If I were asked to give what I consider the single most useful bit of advice for all humanity it would be this: Expect trouble as an inevitable part of life and when it comes, hold you head high, look it squarely in eye and say, ‘I will be bigger than you. You cannot defeat me.’.” –Ann Landers

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School Is In Session


Consider it pure joy, my brothers and sisters,whenever you face trials of many kinds, because you know that the testing of your faith produces perseverance. Let perseverance finish its work so that you may be mature and complete, not lacking anything. If any of you lacks wisdom, you should ask God, who gives generously to all without finding fault, and it will be given to you. But when you ask, you must believe and not doubt, because the one who doubts is like a wave of the sea, blown and tossed by the wind. That person should not expect to receive anything from the Lord. Such a person is double-minded and unstable in all they do. -James 1:2-8 NIV

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God Didn’t Do That

Sometimes we seem to forget that we are but man and God is in control. We have a familiar way of trying so desperately to teach the class when we ourselves have not even passed the course. I have a nasty habit of getting ahead of myself and by doing so, whether I realize it or not, I end up pushing God and His plans out of my way. The result of this common thoughtlessness is common chaos.

It is our own fault when we run into walls because we are not looking where we are going. It is ironically the scars those injuries leave behind which teach us the things God had intended we learn in a much less painful and much more effective way. We are not to be looking anywhere other than at Him in making decisions in our daily lives. FAITH IS NOT EASY, BUT IT’S WORTH IT.

If we rely on our own conception of what is best for us then we should not be surprised when things do not go as WE had planned. As followers of Christ, we are always surprised because we do not know the plan, but know that if it is God’s then it is a good one!

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When I was an addict, I spent 8 years repeating the same lesson over and over without even realizing I was being taught. As a result, I had to go all the way back to where I had started after years of running, never understanding I had been disqualified and none of it mattered! I looked hard for someone to blame, but there was no one else around. I had been living a lie and I was the liar.

It was through this experience and by my accepting accountability for my arrogance which enabled me to finally pass God Only Knows 101. Only by humbling myself and admitting to God that I was lost without Him did I make it to the next stage of my life and in my walk as a Christian.

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We do not know how to be the instructor of our lives. We do not know why, how, when, what, or who and we cannot put on a fake look and expect the truth to manifest in our situations! If we take the lead, God will not stop us. Free will is a gift and it is also our worst deterrent from making progress. God will, however, be there when you realize you were not as smart as you thought you were. He will always be back where you left Him even if you lapped Him a hundred times.

“A courage which looks easy and yet is rare; the courage of a teacher repeating day after day the same lessons – the least rewarded of all forms of courage.” -Honore De Balzac

Praise God in all seasons and remind yourselves daily how lucky you are to have Him as your instructor. He will never fail you, but He will make sure you have really learned from what He has shown you before He let’s you move on to the next class. Don’t get stuck in grade school simply because you refuse to be taught. God wants to see you graduate with honors and in turn you are to give Him the honor, the glory, and the praise for grace and His wisdom.

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Every day is a lesson, but it’s up to us to show up to class prepared and aware we are but the student. God is in control!

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Live Happy

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A Beautiful Disaster


Someday everything will make perfect sense. So for now, laugh at the confusion, smile through the tears and keep reminding yourself that everything happens for a reason.-

Harriet Morgan quotes

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Top 25 CS Lewis Quotes

Disaster strikes again!
Just when you were finally running at a steady pace, you trip over yourself and end up dead last in the race.
With your head in your hands you begin to analyze,
Why you tried in the first place and how you actually believed it was worth a try.
Tears swell up in your eyes, but you won’t let them see you affected,
You pretend it’s no big deal while inside you feel utterly dejected.
Before you know it you’ve been lapped by other runners and not one has yet stopped to see that you are okay,
You are actually quite relieved since they wouldn’t really care if they asked anyway.
After your ego has recovered you prepare yourself to stand,
But before you can pull yourself up off the ground someone has already reached for your hand.
Squinting from the sun in your salty seas of eyes, you try to identify this philanthropist,
He shades your view with His free and and soon you realize it’s Jesus.
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You get to your feet and finally begin to cry,
Not because of sadness, but because you realized you fell for the enemy’s lie.
You tell The Lord you are sorry and that you never meant to doubt in,
The fact that with Him on your team it’s a guaranteed win.
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Life is a trip and we are all in a spiritual race,
However do not allow the devil to slow down your pace.
He will use your thoughts, your friends, and even your belief to distract you from the finish line,
He will tell you that no matter how hard you work at it, things will never be fine.
We are surrounded by liars, by imposters and by fear every where we turn,
But when we allow Jesus to lead we see the flames before we feel the burn.
He winks at you and once again dusts the dirt on your face,
He takes your hand and together you rejoin the race.
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“Time is swift, it races by; Opportunities are born and die… Still you wait and will not try – A bird with wings who dares not rise and fly.” -A.A. Milne

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We Will Rise


I John 5:4, 5 NKJV

“For whatever is born of God overcomes the world. And this is the victory that has overcome the world—our faith. Who is he who overcomes the world, but he who believes that Jesus is the Son of God?”

Better to be miserable with her than happy without her. Let our hearts break provided they break together. If the voice within us does not say this it is not the voice of Eros. C. S. Lewis

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