Thursday, September 11, 2014

she laughs at the time to come


Strength: The quality or state of being strong, the emotional or mental qualities necessary in dealing with situations or events that are distressing or difficult. 

Dignity: The state or quality of being worthy of honor or respect.

Both are BIG character shoes to fill. How does one become strong, without first being weak? How does someone become dignified without first being UN-dignified?

JESUS. ACCOUNTABILITY. LOTS AND LOTS OF GRACE. 

Strength comes from first being made weak. It comes from being broken. It comes from experience. "Sometimes you have to shatter, before you can heal." -Elenowen 
There is such a difference in character, when you look at someone who has been broken,made weak, experienced life WITHOUT Jesus, than someone who has done all of those things WITH Jesus. A HUGE difference. 

Dignity. To be worthy of honor & respect. Should we not be viewing ourselves ALREADY as dignified? Should we not view ourselves as Christ already views us? As noble and worth far above rubies? We are daughters of THE MOST HIGH KING. We MUST view ourselves as valuable and worth the best, if we expect others to do the same. 

She laughs at the time to come/without fear of the future.

I rarely laugh without fear of the future, somewhere in the back of my mind. 
Maybe not FEAR of the future, but I am definitely skeptical to put one foot in front of the other if I am unaware of where my steps will lead. We are called to "Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding. In all your ways acknowledge Him, and He shall direct your paths." 
(Proverbs 3:5-6)// I also read a quote that I can't find the original source of, but it said something along the lines of: "Faith is stretching out your hands, and being willing to be lead somewhere you'd rather not go." I probably butchered that, but the message is so crucial, and something that I am constantly sharing. 

I don't have it all figured out, but God does.
Sometimes the idea of being made weak scares me, but I want to be strong.
I think of myself as if I am not enough, but Jesus meets me where I am, because I am enough. 

You're going to fail. You're going to have insanely hard trials. You're going to have someone belittle you and treat you as if you're less than. 

You're going to fail so that you can succeed, and God can use you to guide others away from the mistakes that you've made. 

You're going to have trials, for the same reason. 

You're going to have people treat you like you're not valuable, but they are LIARS. 

God made you in HIS IMAGE, for HIS PURPOSES.

Don't be afraid to dream big, and takes steps that God is leading you to take.

He has gone before you. He knows.




Wednesday, July 16, 2014

Louder than a whisper, but quiet still.


Isn't it amazing that we have the ability, the privilege to hear from the Maker of the heavens & of the earth? That his voice can sometimes be audible, & sometimes it's just a burden on your heart to move in the direction that He would have us to go in? I've talked before about The Lord instructing me to "Be still", and lately I have been maybe avoiding (more than forgetting to) doing that. I've been trying to guess what The Lord has for me in the next chapter instead of trusting Jesus & just being along for the ride. I've been gambling with my emotions and placing bets that could definitely do damage, if what I'm betting (all in) on isn't in the cards for me. 

I'm learning (and sometimes it's a struggle to accept #transparent) that the future is not (at all) up to me. I'm walking the path that The Lord has charted or me before I was even a thought. 

My story has already been written. There is no changing the outcome. It's along the lines of reading a book by my favorite author (&He is...He really is.) and trusting that I'm going to enjoy the characters,situations, the peaks, and the ending. 

BUT on occasions when we have questions, and life seems to be filled with unknown after unknown-we want/pray for spoilers. We ask God to reveal His plans WAY ahead of His perfect schedule, due to the fact that we are so crazy impatient. 

We often say that we wish we could just get a glimpse of what our lives will be like in a year, or 5/10 years from now. 

That is another lesson I am learning-not knowing can be EXCITING. I have to try and convince myself of that daily. But really the thought of being surprised by my Jesus (my Maker, my Husband) is really quite the breathtaking notion. My heart catches in my chest when I think of all of the things that have happened in my life thus far that have all been in preparation for what's GOING to happen. 

All of that being said- 
BE STILL
ENJOY THE SILENCE
GET ALONE WITH JESUS OFTEN! 

He desires to speak to you, and to your heart. He wants to give you glimpses of His plans for your life. More than anything, He wants to constantly remind you of how loved you are. He wants us to trust Him with our all. 

(A) Don't question or doubt His love. He proved it by dying for you.

(B) Don't question or doubt His intentions/plans for your life. Has He not done AMAZING things in your life so far? (The fact that you're breathing ALONE is a miracle.) 

(C) Rest in His love, and allow Him to show you DAILY in every moment how much. 

(D) Be excited about your future with JESUS. He won't ever let you down. Trust in Him. Ask Him for guidance and start moving with expectancy and He WILL use you. 


I love you guys!
Mags

Thursday, June 5, 2014

A spirit of heaviness

"to grant to those who mourn in Zion—
    to give them a beautiful headdress instead of ashes,
the oil of gladness instead of mourning,
    the garment of praise instead of a faint spirit;
that they may be called oaks of righteousness, "
Isaiah 61:3

Isn't it strange...how we give the enemy a foothold in our lives on a pretty constant basis? How we KNOW he's lying to us, but we believe the lies? How we can be having the greatest day with Jesus, and then words of doubt,fear,rejection are whispered into our ears. As a woman it goes straight to my heart, and I just get discouraged. I felt like that last night. I blogged yesterday about letting go of what I thought was best for my life and what I thought God had for my life. I went to church, was SO blessed by the message, worship was SO good, and I got to be with my high schoolers. I can't explain what it was, but less than an hour after the study was over I just hit that wall. The enemy started whispering those not-so-sweet nothings into my ear, and I believed them. I felt like I had swallowed a rock-there was just that gnawing in my stomach. I couldn't slow my thoughts down, and I felt I couldn't control them. I started to hear that lie of "you are NOT enough" and started to believe it. When I got home, I went into my usually scary-at-night-because-it's-so-big backyard, and prayed. I more than prayed I CRIED out to Jesus to take my feelings of insecurity, doubt, and all that goes along with those-and I still felt that weight in my stomach. I spent the next couple of hours trying to pray it away. At about 2:30 this morning I realized that I hadn't given my hurting to Jesus. I WANTED to hang on to my weird-kind-of suffering. I DIDN'T WANT TO RELINQUISH CONTROL OVER WHAT I DID HAVE CONTROL OVER. Literally less than 24 hours ago-I was blogging about the opposite. I'm human I suppose and can't control my emotions, but I definitely have the ability to let go and let God. (Pardon the cheese)  Once I realized why I was still feeling the way I was-I took a deep breath, talked to Jesus, and closed my eyes. I fell asleep and dreamt that I was singing with John Mayer. We did his cover of XO by Beyonce-It was great. But I digress.

WHEN YOU ARE:
REMEMBER TO DO THIS:

Our God is greater, bigger, stronger, and has EVERYTHING in the palm of His hands, and He has since the beginning of time. He understands you sweating the small stuff, but you don't need to. Look to Jesus, the founder and perfecter of our faith. 

I love you guys! 

Wednesday, June 4, 2014

Relinquishing what I never had


I know. I know. It's been a while. I have been so busy at work, and with life, and just not feeling inspired! However, that's what best friends are for. Inspiration! (Thanks Ky & Brit)

How many times have you prayed super specifically for something? How many times have you prayed more for one thing than anything else hoping that it would some how sway the decision that God made for your life (before you were even formed in your mothers womb)? I am sitting in my room typing this with my hand raised. I am oh so guilty.

I have prayed assuming that what I wanted, was what God had. I have prayed assuming that God would (obviously)give me what I want...because I am a spoiled little brat (and most likely, so are you). Now, I've blogged about Letting Go before, but this is a different kind of letting go.

I have also blogged about dodging bullets, and being saved from my own devices. WHICH I HAVE. Like I said-I have prayed specifically, and assuming. I have prayed like I was the decision maker, but the last few years of my life I have come to the opposite conclusion. Every situation that I prayed about that I wasn't absolutely positive was God's will-I am so crazy thankful His answer was No, or Not Now.

Guys I can NOT stress enough how FAITHFUL the Lord has been in my life. CAN NOT. Not only do I have the greatest job (Sure it's retail, sure I have to wear an ugly yellow striped shirt), BUT I LOVE IT. I love my bosses, the people I work with, that I get to work with kids, they take care of me financially, I have medical insurance...the list goes on. I have worked there for (in September) 10 years. That is almost a third of my life. I'm thankful that the Lord didn't have it in the plans for me to get hired, at any of the other places I applied for, right before High School graduation.

I am thankful for all of the turns that He has had me take.
I am thankful for all of the times that He has told me no.
I am thankful for the fact that I have been single for 28 years.
I am thankful that He knows me, and He does NOT withold any good thing.

I would like to leave you on this note:
Trust that the Lord knows what He is doing.
Trust that if it feels like it's taking a long time for a promise to be fulfilled-IT IS GOING TO BE SO WORTH IT. It WILL blow your mind.

"God never witholds from His child that which His love and wisdom
call good. God's refusals are always merciful-- "severe mercies" at times but mercies all the same. God never denies us our hearts desire except to give us something better." -Elisabeth Elliot

Monday, February 17, 2014

I want to be Your hands.

I've been convicted a lot lately, about a few things:
>Thinking before I speak.
>Thinking before I sigh a sigh of discontent.
>Thinking before I vent about anything.
I tend to exaggerate my disbelief in the way I was treated. I can't BELIEVE they would think of me that way, talk to me that way, etcetera. Lately however I have been trying to put back into practice probably the single best piece of advice I have ever received. That is to approach every situation like you don't know what kind of day the person you are dealing with has had. Whenever someone starts giving my patience a run for it's money, I stop....(collaborate and listen), say a quick prayer for the person I am dealing with, for wisdom for myself, take a deep breath, and then do my best to handle the situation while maintaining my example. I feel like it's not just important as believers, but important as HUMANS to treat someone like you would like to be treated. (It is BIBLICAL: Luke 6:31) I have had some major tragedies in my life, and I know for me the people who stuck by my side and prayed,comforted,and held me through that horrible period of time will be etched into my heart for the rest of my life. I also know that the ones who didn't know how to handle the situation or just didn't want to even try, will also stick out in my memories. I do not ever want to be the kind of person who just walks away from someone without trying to be an encouragement in the very least. I want to be etched into the hearts of everyone I meet for being a picture of Jesus, and walking the walk that I claim to. Another thing I have been convicted about is being a fault finder. WHO AM I?! We aren't CALLED to be FAULT finders! That's not even KIND OF in our job description. We are to be FRUIT finders. If it was in our job description? Like we all so often claim to believe it is? We'd be walking around like a bunch of jerks, (which we are...) telling people what they're doing wrong. Instead, shouldn't we be lifting people up? ESPECIALLY those who do not have the hope of heaven/a personal relationship with Jesus. THEY are NOT living for the glory of God (YET!!!!), but for the glorification of themselves. I was just yelling at myself...sorry y'all. Basically, I have been feeling the calling more than EVER on my life to encourage others. I don't want to be the kind of Christian who shakes their head at someone when they've fallen down, and just say a prayer that eventually they would get back up on their feet. I want my hands to be the hands that help them to achieve that..in the name of Jesus, and for His glory.

Thursday, January 30, 2014

Letting Go

As of late my heart has been burdened with several things, almost to the point of it being literally heavy in my chest. I have a hard time relaying my feeling about ANYTHING to ANYONE but Jesus & Britney Case. For this very reason, I am positive that that is why Jesus gave her to me. She’s a good listener, and calls me out on my crazy. I never feel judged, but always encouraged, and always re-directed to Jesus, and she’s basically my own personal cheerleader. ANYWAYS! This blog is NOT about Britney; although that day may come eventually! This blog IS about several things-two of them being: Handling your emotions, and making sure you’re giving them to Jesus in every situation. I will start with this new personal challenge that Britney, and I have called ourselves to after reading a blog post somewhere on cyberspace. The challenge: Respond, do not react. I have the HIGHEST tendency to flip my lid when I feel wronged, or when I feel like someone I care about has been. Lately, my conviction of this has been HUGE. I hate making people feel small, I hate it when people make me feel small, and I realized that on occasion I would react completely from a place 100% in my flesh. Working on deep breathing, praying for the person in that moment, and responding with grace, like the grace I have been given-has been my homework. Going back to the starting message of this blog; I have been re-hashing out/ re-learning/ re-remembering to give every burden on my heart over to the Lord. Not only is it the healthiest option for your heart, but for your mind as well. When you aren’t stuck thinking about the same guy, job, situation at work, things going on at home, playing out scenarios over and over again in your head leading you to feeling broken, rejected, disappointed, or just plain sad-your HEART will be in better spirits too. So, in the long run, it may be harder to loosen your grip on whatever is weighing your heart down, and you may even MISS the heaviness, but your joy will be full. Knowing that you’re handing over these things that your worldly self deems “important” over to the Maker of the heavens and earth, the SAVIOR of the world…will hopefully ease the separation anxiety. I was going to end this blog entry here, but the topic of guarding your heart is something else that is heavy on mine. I know I have blogged about dodged bullets, keeping your heart guarded, and endless other dating kind of topics, but it’s not something that I feel we could talk enough about. It’s super important to me. I have been fortunate to have not gotten too seriously hurt in my life time. It’s been a long life looking back, but it has been an EXTREMELY blessed life more so. I do not know how to seriously scratch the surface on how to protect your heart. I think it might go pretty hand in hand with what I was talking about earlier though. When you give the burdens over? Give the heart where the burdens lie over also. I have only asked God to protect my heart one time…I thought it was a Christian cliché and by just having a relationship with Jesus-He would automatically guard my heart. And while He did to an extent, by sparing me from being heartbroken; there is so much more to it than that. Your heart needs to be handed over willingly. Your heart needs to be WRAPPED UP IN AND WITH CHRIST. If He is your first love, your primary focus, your greatest good…Your heart is gonna stay pretty guarded. This is something I myself struggle with, so it will be an ongoing topic-as I grow-I will share! I will keep y’all updated on my progress with the respond/react, and the whole handing over my issues to Jesus thing. I love you guys! Till next time! <3

Thursday, November 28, 2013

Thanksgiving: Week 4


I am going to be writing my thankfulness entries for the rest of the month of November, before the month of November is over! I am thankful for so much more than what I have written about, but I don't know if I will ever be able to express all that I am thankful for. Love y'all

The 22nd-
I'm thankful for life experience. I'm thankful that I get to use my experiences as an example of God's faithfulness, grace, provision and guidance. So often people won't listen to the advice that you are trying to give unless you have some first-hand experience that is relevant to what they're going through. So many times, I have had people come into my life, who were going through something so similar to what I had, and I will know in that moment-that THEY are why I went through what I did. I'm thankful for experiences that bless others.

The 23rd-
I am thankful for the selflesness I have seen in my life. Parents, some friends, my pastor. Thankful that there are some people exemplifying Jesus, truly with their lives, because it is their character. Thankful that I have people to look up to.

The 24th-
Thankful for songs that make my heart beat faster, and give me chills. Bands like Band of Horses, The Swell Season, and Tony Lucca, do that for me. I love day dreaming, and I'm really good at it. Songs that ooze mushy love, heartbreak, and forever, make for quite the stellar soundtrack to my day dreams.

The 25th-
(Thankful for my beautiful oldest niece! Today is her 16th Birthday, and I remember the day she was born like it was yesterday. Thankful for her life, and thankful that I can see my brother in her face, her sense of humor, and her vast knowledge of music. I love you baby!) Thankful for hope. In the way I have hope for my tomorrows, and forever with Jesus. In the way that my Jesus never breaks His promises, so that I am able to rest in and hope in Him and His Word. Thankful forthe dreams and desires He has put in my heart.

The 26th-
Encouragement. Whether someone tells you they've noticed (any kind of) improvement, any kind of success, or maybe just a really good hair day; It's always a nice thing, and always a welcomed thing. I recently had a meeting with one of my bosses at work, and he said some of the nicest things regarding my work ethic, and their dependency on me. I was blown away, and very thankful for it. I might frame it! I walked out of my meeting with them, feeling so good knowing they appreciate me, and TOLD me how they felt. It made my day. I challenge you to encourage daily. Make it a habit, a part of your routine, a part of your life. Making other people happy? Makes YOU happy in turn. DO IT.

The 27th-
I'm thankful for fall and winter. Two of my favorite things in life are cold weather, and fall colors. While Thanksgiving is my favorite holiday, I love how happy people are at Christmas time. I love having to wear sweatshirts and coats, socks and boots, beanies and gloves. There's a feeling of security when you're bundled up. It's my favorite and I'm thankful for it!

The 28th-
Thankful for a good bargain. I absolutely ADORE thrift shopping. I rarely look at the clothing-I'm a sucker for homegoods. Last year's Threshold Christmas decorations for $2?! YES PLEASE!! A brand new Vans sweatshirt for $3?! I'll take it! I love loving the little things. I'm thankful for them.

The 29th-
I'm thankful for the people, who help the people who cannot help themselves. Whether it be those who work with the kids who have been abandoned, or put up for adoption because their parents were young, or couldn't take care of them, or passed away; to the people who work with handicapped adults. The love, the patience, and the care (some, unfortunately not all) that I see, go into the lives of said people, blesses my heart. I hear horror stories of awful care-givers, and it breaks my heart. At work, groups from homes come in almost daily, for field trips. They always want hugs, high fives, hand shakes, or just to be noticed. They have the sweetest hearts. Thankful for the life I have, and thankful for the calling these people hear, and follow.

The 30th-
The last day of my thankful blogs. I'm thankful for thankfulness. Have a heart of gratitude is such a joyful place to be. Thankful for freedom of speech to be able to write what's on my heart. Thankful FOR my heart. Thankful for the life that God has called me to. The fact that the maker of the heavens and earth wrote a plan for MY life. He cares enough about me to plan every part of my life, and He speaks to me. He comforts me, sustains me, sings over me, and loves me more than I could ever comprehend. I am SO thankful for Him!!!