In All Seasons


We worry, fear, stress, and feel alone. If we are in the hands of God, creator of Heaven and Earth, why then wouldn’t we trust He knows our needs?

God loves us so very much, we are included His workmanship.

Next time you feel like you have no purpose, consider the One who gave you one. Consider the power, the wisdom, and love of God. He is always the same, never changing. Although we may change, our circumstances may change, and as the seasons change, God orchestrated it all from the beginning. We need to trust Him not our own understanding.

We may be small, but our God is bigger than our problems!

For more inspirational photography visit my photography blog, My Moments

Then God said, “Let there be light”; and there was light. And God saw the light, that it was good; and God divided the light from the darkness. God called the light Day, and the darkness He called Night. So the evening and the morning were the first day. (Genesis 1:5 NKJV)

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Now to Him who is able to do exceedingly abundantly above all that we ask or think, according to the power that works in us, to Him be glory in the church by Christ Jesus to all generations, forever and ever. Amen (Ephesians 3:20 – 3:21 NKJV)

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Weathered


“God moves in a mysterious way, His wonders to perform. He plants his footsteps in the sea, and rides upon the storm.” William Cowper


On the days the water rises and the winds blow cold,
When my eyes fill up with the tears I can no longer hold.
I take a deep breath and I call Your name,
I remembers so many storms before this I have done the very same.
When escape feels impossible, I know You will provide a way out.
When clarity seems unattainable, You remove all of my doubt.
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Then Moses and the children of Israel sang this song to the LORD, and spoke, saying:

“I will sing to the LORD,

For He has triumphed gloriously!

The horse and its rider

He has thrown into the sea! The LORD is my strength and song,

And He has become my salvation;

He is my God, and I will praise Him;

My father’s God, and I will exalt Him. The LORD is a man of war; The LORD is His name

(Exodus 15:1 – 15:3 NKJV)

My heart is so weathered, its pieces scatter with the breeze.
I need you to come collect them and put me back together please.
I don’t need to do much other than allow You to lead,
You see these cuts and bruises I have from crawling on my knees.
The world keeps me down, but only when I let it.
Your Word burns through the lies that try to make me forget it.
No matter the conditions, You promise Ill make it.
You strengthen me as I go so I’m able to take it.
If I listen to You then I will hear.
If I trust you there is nothing to fear.

“Times of general calamity and confusion have ever been productive of the greatest minds. The purest ore is produced from the hottest furnace, and the brightest thunderbolt is elicited from the darkest storm.” -Charles Caleb Colton


“Faith is a living, daring confidence in God’s grace, so sure and certain that a man could stake his life on it a thousand times.” -Martin Luther


“Courage is not the towering oak that sees storms come and go; it is the fragile blossom that opens in the snow.” -Alice M. Swaim

The Art of Letting Go & Letting God


My latest post is up! God has written your story, don’t get stuck on a page! Be blessed

The Art of Letting Go & Letting God.

Jackpot


I woke up this morning to a text message from Chase. We all know that any alert from the bank is not likely a courtesy call to say you have too much money, so then you can guess what this one was telling me…Again.
It is a never ending battle between the mind and the spirit. It is a never ending rat race when it comes to money. Luckily for me, after having experienced this very attack of the enemy on my trust in God a few hundred times before, I managed to dodge the punch before it was delivered this time.

When these little thorns present themselves in our lives we can sometimes be so blindsided from the pain that we forget the beauty of the rose all together. On the contrary, If we get pricked enough, eventually the sting is not such a surprise nor is it as painful.

These trials will show that your faith is genuine. It is being tested as fire tests and purifies gold – though your faith is far more precious than mere gold. So when your faith remains strong through many trials, it will bring you much praise and glory and honor on the day when Jesus Christ is revealed to the whole world. (1Pet 1:7)

Do not think that in times of worldly trial that you are any less loved or protected by God. In fact, i can tell you that it is actually quite the opposite! When a test is presented to you, especially when involving old patterns of thinking or behavior, that is a sure fire way of preparing you for a blessing. God is so patient with us in our refinement that He will work things in us and in our lives which take several years, but He will not keep us in the circumstance for years while we learn.

You have hit the jackpot already by choosing to follow the Lord and God’s plan for you. Don’t get played like a fruit machine when the enemy makes you think you are broke.
These visitations from the ghosts of being broke past do not define my present, but are reminders of the work I have done with God in my reacting to them. He has provided a way for me then, again, again, and if I have learned anything, I know He will provide a way again.

What we cling to is what we need. Make sure when someone leaves you, when the money deceives you, or others do not believe you, that you remember God is simply reminding you He is there to give you what you seek. Simple. Life is for living and when we live the lives God has called us to, then these distractions don’t get reactions and you get better at being happy and being free from the bondage of worry.

The video is Natalie Grant’s Alive and I listen to it whenever I find the claws of the world ripping at me. It puts my mind back in the proper place which is behind the spirit. Enjoy!

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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Caught Red Handed


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“He who chooses to be a master never does just enough to get by; nor does he cut corners or attempt to cheat the system. He who chooses mastery lives his life asking, ‘How can I do more, give more, be more, and thereby accelerate the achievement of my ultimate destiny?’.” -James Arthur Ray

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Burn me once shame on you, burn me twice shame on me. The war against trickery seems to be fought on a daily basis. My favorite book, the Screwtape Letters by C.S. Lewis, not only addresses such deceit, but the very worst kind….The lies we tell ourselves!

We have an awful way of breaking our own hearts with some of the things we convince ourselves of, however, when another person takes it upon themselves to do the breaking, it seems much harder to recover. There is nothing worse than coming to find out the truth you very much believed in was all the while a fraud. I am not a stranger to this tragedy. In fact, I may as well have written it myself. I have been both the liar and the lied to and can confidently say both are just as painful. Thank God I was blessed with the opportunity to rebuild the bridges I burned with the fire of my tongue, but sadly there are people who are completely content in watching the cinders burn. People who lie for sport. People who simply do not care what they have to do or who they have to hurt in getting what they are after.

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But no, the people are like crafty merchants

selling from dishonest scales –

they love to cheat (Hosea 12:7 NLT)

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Honesty is the foundation of all relationships whether they be with others or ourselves. One cannot plant strong roots in weak soil. When we lie, cheat, and manipulate in order to satisfy our wants, we forfeit our ability to attain true happiness and simultaneously destroy the idea of that happiness for those we hurt when they realize what we have done. It is so much easier for everyone if we say what we mean and mean what we say. God sees all the things we do when we think no one is watching.

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The sick feeling that accompanies being a fake is actually discernment. We know very well what we are doing in the midst of dishonesty and that it is not okay, but money, lust, and fear have brilliant ways of convincing us otherwise. Regardless of the temporal gain we may feel we achieve via cutting corners and the hearts of others, the long lasting outcome is loss of much more than we realize. In an instant all the things the devil promises you will fade and you will be left empty handed and full of regret.

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Do not get caught red handed in the cookie jar. If you know you shouldn’t be eating a cookie then don’t eat one! If you want a cookie that badly ask for one! God would rather you ask for help than see you take matters into your own hands despite the consequences. He knows your desires and He knows much better than you whether or not what you crave now will be satisfying to your long term happiness. Trust Him and be trusted by others. Eventually someone will notice they are low on cookies and you will be the only one around with chocolate on your face and
a tummy ache!

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Every Party Has a Pooper


Then said the LORD, Thou hast had pity on the gourd, for the which thou hast not laboured, neither madest it grow; which came up in a night, and perished in a night:  And should not I spare Nineveh, that great city, wherein are more then sixscore thousand persons that cannot discern between their right hand and their left hand; and also much cattle? (Jonah 4:10-11)

I will be the first to admit that I have, many times, been the pooper of the party. I walked in with a sour attitude and left others with one due to my ungracious heart. It is so easy to feel like the world is against you and when you believe it, it shows in your outward actions. We get caught up in our own head and create a very negative and false sense of reality. We snap at the any and everything, become ungrateful,  and there is nothing anyone can say or do to get us to change our mind when we are in self-destruct mode. Very much like walking nightmares, it is probably best to stay far away from us in this kind of mood.

We usually regret the things we say and do in this state once we realize the foolish way we have behaved. I have made many mistakes in life due to my own bad attitude. Failed relationships, lost opportunities, and lonely nights are a few of the results of my selfishness. It is the enemy’s favorite game: You against you!

Pity-Wikipedia

Jonah is a great example of the contrast between an angry heart and the kind heart of the Lord. Jonah-EBible.com. Our behavior is the the polar opposite of  the way God is to us. We forget sometimes how much we are loved and how blessed we are to have the lives we do. The love of God is a great deterrent from mistreating ourselves and others when the enemy picks a fight. The reminder of the grace, the second chances, and the eternal peace we receive from God are enough to knock the nasty right out of your thinking. He loves all He has created from the flowers to your worst enemy and we are to respect that when we go about our daily lives. If He can pity us after all we do then surely we can sympathize for others versus judge them or ignore them. If He can forgive us for the things we do then we can forgive ourselves when we make mistakes. If He values the world and all in it then we are to value what He values.

God So Loved The World

The next time you find yourself at the pity party, remember the love God has for you and the power that goes with that love. In Him, you are unstoppable. You are intended to be happy, successful, and free of worry in times of trial. He did not sacrifice what He has for failures, pessimists, or haters. He did it for the humble, the honest and the faithful.With Jesus, we all are free of the struggle with the world, but we are the ones who control the struggle with ourselves. Don’t forget who you are and don’t stop others from being who they were born to be either. This life is God’s party. Don’t be the pooper.

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Trust


“A woman is like a teabag, you never know how strong she is until she gets into hot water.” -Eleanor Roosevelt

I am one woman
I have one voice.
I have two options
Everyday I make a choice.
To trust in a God and blindly follow
Or to see my way through a world leaving my soul feeling hollow.
To trust in a God who I can’t hold or hear
Or to lean on a reasoning justified by my fear.
I am one woman
I have one voice.
I have two options
Everday I make a choice.
To trust in a God who has written my salvation
Or to continue to rot in self condemnation.
To trust in a God who holds the stars in His hands
Or to cater to people and their petty demands.
I am one woman
I have one voice
I don’t need to have options
To trust God is my choice.

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Forever Faithful


“But now, O Jacob, listen to the LORD who created you. O Israel, the one who formed you says, “Do not be afraid, for I have ransomed you. I have called you by name; you are mine.When you go through deep waters, I will be with you. When you go through rivers of difficulty, you will not drown. When you walk through the fire of oppression, you will not be burned up; the flames will not consume you.”
(NLT) Isaiah 43:1-2
We sometimes think that God is too far away to help us when we enter times of turmoil, that He is in Heaven and that we are here all alone. The distance between us and God is actually not only the opposite, but it is also non existent.

God is right here. He is very much present in our lives and He is always aware of our situations. He is able to rectify whatever problems present themselves, it is just a matter of us asking Him and if what we are in fact asking for aligns with the betterment of ourselves and our lives.

I have had many prayers feel like they were unheard or bouncing off some imaginary wall and returned right back. In a relationship I would pray for Him to convict the heart of someone who was hurting me so it would work. but the next day I got left. In my place of previous employment I would pray for an advancement, but end up working for 17 hours doing manager’s work while they went home to live their lives. In a bind I would pray for finances, but instead remained broke for days wondering where my blessing was or if it was coming at all.

In all of the instances I just mentioned I was angry and discouraged with the results of prayer when, in retrospect, I should have instead been thankful! The guy I with was a jerk, the job I was at was dreadful and the money I asked for was not given in order to show me how to manage my spending and on who I spending the money on!

All these times and every other time, my prayers continue to be answered according to what God knows is best. Unanswered prayers are answered ones. God hears when we cry out our heart’s deepest desires to Him. He is not far away handing out ticket numbers and we are not at line at the DMV. Our cares are all taken care of and tended to simultaneously. Although hard to comprehend, there is no waiting in God’s house. We are not able to understand His omnipotence because we are limited in our abilities. God knows no limits. He knows no lie.

When you feel lost and unimportant. When you are afraid of your financial situation or a failing relationship. Remember God has our best interest in mind and the script of our victory written. Temporary trial is no more than an additional reason to praise God. Immediate struggles and tests precede long term blessings and progress. We are to always be thankful and in any season, for whatever reason, praise the One who is forever faithful.
“I am not worthy of all the unfailing love and faithfulness you have shown to me, your servant. When I left home and crossed the Jordan River, I owned nothing except a walking stick. Now my household fills two large camps!” Genesis 32:10 (NLT)
Our Father Who Art In Heaven- an article by Ola Aroyehun

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