Tag Archives: realizations

Don’t Numb The Pain – You Have A Choice!

Photo by frankie cordoba on Unsplash

Photo by frankie cordoba on Unsplash

One of the greatest things I’ve done in life was sit through the pain. I didn’t run away, didn’t rationalize, didn’t find unhealthy ways to cope. I dropped everything and sat in my anger, shame and pain.

I sat there and embraced it, completely.

It was in my pain that I saw a loving God and the strength he has given me. In that lonely and painful time, it was then, that I realized that I am in full control over my decisions and actions. I decided, that the greatest power I have, is wielding my faith and holding on to my integrity. All the pain:  self-inflicted or caused by others, was not going to make me into a horrible  person.

I knew I ready won. No one can take God or my integrity away from me.

Photo by Hello I'm Nik on Unsplash

Photo by Hello I’m Nik on Unsplash

I can do good and be good.

I can rise above the pain of life.

I can hold on to what I truly believe in.

I can explore life with faith.

I also accepted that I knew nothing about the promises of God. It’s not enough to do good deeds, we need to know why we do them.

Photo by Josh Appel on Unsplash

Photo by Josh Appel on Unsplash

We do good to off balance evil.

We do good to help others.

We do good to glorify God

We do good for our own future – storing up treasures in heaven that never rot or decay.

Photo by Daniel Apodaca on Unsplash

Photo by Daniel Apodaca on Unsplash

The sight of heaven and being with God as a reward, made it easier for me to press on. Our mistakes and failures are meaningless under grace. We have a choice, every new day, to chase after God and his ways. We must be willing to throw out human opinion and fear of man to rise up. We will be misunderstood, hated and suffer all kinds of things when we decide to follow God. But, don’t focus on that. Focus on God and what he tells you to do. No one can make you do anything or be anything. No one has that power unless you give it to them.

Photo by Oliver Roos on Unsplash

Photo by Oliver Roos on Unsplash

It’s a choice that affects every other choice you make.

Always aim to choose wisely.

How God Used Web Development To Prune Me

Photo by Hello I'm Nik on Unsplash

Photo by Hello I’m Nik on Unsplash

It’s about time I talk about my journey in Web Development. If you follow me on twitter, you will see tweets about events I’ve attended, splashed here and there.

My journey started in late 2017. I learned HTML, CSS and JavaScript fundamentals in a class setting. It was an amazing experience. I fell in love with code: mainly design (JavaScript kicks my butt, but I haven’t given up) and I’m now learning WordPress and PHP.

I learned so much over the span of this experience. It was difficult. At first, it was like a dream. I was excited and dedicated. Then life hit me, and I had to make decisions that challenged my faith.

I mentioned in a previous post about attending a Boot Camp. Well, that was an eye opening experience in itself. I want to start of by saying that the aim of this post is to serve as a source of  encouragement and also a teaching lesson. I almost lost everything – including my life – BUT it was all God’s plan and it was only at this moment that I could fully accept this as truth.

You might remember my angry posts. My posts about not being happy and losing joy. I was in a very dark place. I was worried I lost everything – all that God had given me – over something so stupid.

I won’t get into details over what that thing was but the root of it was – I wasn’t solid in my understanding of who God is. This was a teaching moment for me and God was going to let me fall on my face so I could understand.

We must be rooted in God’s love for us. My greatest fear happened to me and I was thrown off course. I was upset – I questioned God. How could He allow the very thing I was trying to avoid. I was content with where I was and where I was going. I was content with the future I had planned out for myself. It was as if God led me right into my fears and then left me alone to see how I would respond. Prayers were not answered: I ran to and fro to anyone that could give me counsel. I was embarrassed and ashamed.

by: Tim Mossholder

by: Tim Mossholder

I began to doubt God’s love for me and my heart grew dark. I was angry with God. I wanted to shut down my blog – I felt as if I was living a lie. How could I write about joy when my joy is gone? I knew I had to be honest. I knew I couldn’t lie about how I was feeling.

The boot-camp was not the thing that made me angry with God, but because I was angry, I couldn’t hear God’s voice. God’s voice leads us in our choices in life. Well, my spiritual ears were blocked so I couldn’t hear or recognize that God was telling me not to go.

I worked so hard for this opportunity. Every door slammed in my face during admissions. I finally made it to the end and awaited judgement. Verdict: access denied. I was so upset. I worked so hard just to push down every door that closed in my face. I received a call back, saying a spot was opened that I can fill. I accepted but I wasn’t able to celebrate with sincerity. Honestly, at this point, I was so upset with God that I threw everything out the window. I stopped praying, etc and I was beginning to revert to a part of me I didn’t like. I tried to tell myself this was a miracle – but deep down I wasn’t so sure this was God opening a door for me. It felt more like He gave me what I wanted because I threw a horrible tantrum.

Everything was fine in the beginning. I had this major distraction in my life. It was a person. I realized that every time I’m about to do something important in life – a distraction comes my way in the form of a person. This person undermined everything I sought out to accomplish. At first, person was nice and sweet but over time, person began to chip away at my core beliefs. Person tore me down. I made excuses for person. I thought person was my friend and had my back. I want to warn you: be cautious of who you allow in your inner circle. Be cautious of who you share your inner thoughts and feelings. Some people may appear to be kind and loving but their agenda is to destroy you. They might not even know that they are doing it. Remember, we are fighting a spiritual battle. Sampson , a mighty Judge , was cut down and his destiny cut short because he allowed Delilah to wear him down and expose his weakness. Our enemy is Satan. He sends people – like the Philistines sent Delilah – to uncover your weaknesses. They pose as a friend or a lover – someone you should trust.

Everything became chaotic in my life. It has always been chaotic but because I had lost sight of Christ, the chaos began to affect me. Let’s just say I was a mess. At this point, I wanted to give up on life. I had reached my limit and I was tired. It felt as if all of heaven and earth was against me and I was fighting to survive. Desperate – but cautious – I visited a local church because people were nagging me to fellowship with other Christians. This too was another distraction. You might say : but isn’t fellowship with other Christians a good thing? Not always. Again, not all people that say they are Christians, really are. Christians are also human beings that struggle with sin tenancies, some that are not too pleasant to be around. Then there are others that believe in false doctrine.

Honestly, I believe what happened to me was for a reason. I had to see first hand a lie that is floating around in the Body of Christ and allow God to show me the truth in his word. Some churches are so focused on hyper spirituality that they forget to serve the people. Assembly line prayers – I reached out for prayer and all I got was judgement. Prayer full of judgement and when I sought out a listening ear I was told that I needed to sit down because I was already prayed for. I was appalled. I left the building with a sense of emptiness. It was then that I grit my teeth and said to myself : WHAT ARE YOU DOING!!!!!!

I got really quiet in my spirit and started cutting people out of my life – again. One by one, I closed the door without a word. I did not care who was confused or upset. I was not concerned with pleasing others – I was focused on getting better. While I was cutting people out, I dropped out of the boot-camp. At the time, I was very sad but I knew I had to. It was the best decision I made that year. I spent 2 months recovering – I stopped coding, tended to my weary body and started praying again. It was a painful process – I was very run down.

God began to speak again, or rather, I was able to hear his voice. He comforted me in ways no one else could. When I opened my heart to see the filth inside of it, God cleaned it up and then told me what He was doing. You see, it was his plan the whole time. I had a lot of inner issues I needed to deal with. I realized I had a lot of beliefs that were not really my own. I just accepted them because I accepted the label of Christianity. I learned about the bondage of guilt and shame and that Christ died to get rid of that. He doesn’t want us walking around with guilt and shame. He doesn’t want us to repay for our sins – he already paid for it. But I was walking around with so much baggage – trying to live holy, not because It truly came from my heart, but because I thought it would compensate for my short comings. I also allowed people to heap on burdens on me. I allowed people to wear me down. God held up a mirror and showed me my true identity, outside of the garbage people kept dumping on me. It was then that I knew what He wanted me to do. The vision of my life became clear and my joy returned.

Photo by Sushobhan Badhai on Unsplash

Photo by Sushobhan Badhai on Unsplash

Now my joy is rooted and grounded even more in God’s love. God was pruning me. It is an unpleasant experience but don’t give up. God showed me my growth: instead of completely running away from him, I told him that I would wait for him in my anger. I had to go through the pain and turmoil of my negative emotions. I didn’t run away.

I can now share this experience with the hope of encouraging you to keep the faith. Embrace the pain, the frustration, the anger and the confusion. Like David said ” wait on the Lord.” Sometimes you do everything a good christian is suppose to do and it’s not enough. We cannot manipulate the situation – all we can do is wait on God to teach us and renew us in time.

Photo by Miguel Bruna on Unsplash

Photo by Miguel Bruna on Unsplash

God is refining us. I am no longer bound by the garbage people try to throw at me. I am no longer bound by my preconceived notions about how my life should be – I’m free to accept every good blessing from God. I am free to be myself without shame. I was willing to lose everything I worked hard for to have God and he turned around and gave me so much more.

Love, peace and joy are worth so much more than money and prestige. It’s worth more than any earthly relationship and it’s a true blessing from God. Seek after it with all you have and you will have all that you need.

Please let me know in the comments of how God has pruned you? What did you learn?

Until next time,

Restless

I’m restless and uncomfortable.

I’ve looked up the definition of restless and read a few articles on this emotion and everything about it is negative.

But, I’ve learned to listen to my feelings, at times, for clues as to what is going on with me.

I have concluded that it’s time for a major change. Change is approaching. I feel like I’m changing and it will be a good change.

I will embrace my feelings of restlessness. I refuse to accept certain elements in my life anymore. If I want change, I must embrace being uncomfortable. I must embrace uncertainty, fear and pain. I must embrace the hard work and pain that comes with birthing change.

When old habits die, you feel very uncomfortable. You become hyper vigilant and aware that something is missing.

No one takes a leap of faith when they are comfortable. No one changes or progresses in life while being comfortable! There is usually a turning point in your life that pushes you to take flight. Like a momma bird that pushes her baby out of the nest. That baby doesn’t think it’s ready. It doesn’t even know if it’s ready or not, but momma bird pushes it out and knows there are risk for their baby involved. But if I believe that God is real and loves me, even if I free fall to the earth, He will catch me as I learn to spread my wings and fly.

I want to fly. I want to expand. I want to develop. I want to struggle! I want to experience everything I know is godly possible.

Being perpetually comfortable is bondage!

Now I know something must change and I see my circumstances as the catalyst for my growth. I will use every bad and good experience as stepping stones to my destiny.

I want to say this:

I was accused of being many things, these last few days, while journeying within my frailties, and I want to extend a word of encouragement to those that are seeking and searching for something more than what they have:

Keep searching: Don’t allow anyone or anything to tell you to RELAX or BE AT PEACE or JUST WAIT. Yes, there are times for that but sometimes your restless seeking is part of growth. No one looks for anything if they already have the answers. ¿Comprende?

Don’t let anyone talk you out of what YOU KNOW. You will be presented with a lot of options and opinions….remove them! Get into a quiet mental space and write down your thoughts and feelings. Only worthy opinion is God himself at this stage of the game.

Isolate: Only from people you KNOW for a fact will not support you in anyway. I can’t stress this enough. Stop asking people for their opinion. Learn to navigate your own life!

Be open to learning : Learn hard skills, soft skills, biblical truths, Yourself, Who is God and what does he expect of you?, research, research, research, listen to pioneers that went before you, but don’t let it control you.

Rebuild what was lost: If it’s important, rebuild it. Cultivate it. Nurture it and watch it grow. You need a strong foundation to fall back on. A lesson I learned was that I wasn’t ready for certain things, as I was. I was growing and things were going well but I wasn’t firmly rooted in it. It was easy when adversity came to revert and undo everything I’ve worked so hard to establish. So, one part of the process is to become rooted and grounded in your beliefs, values and system of working. These things will surely help you when adversity and hardships come your way.

Fight for Christ: People will fight for lovers and family but is anyone willing to fight for their relationship with God? Like all relationships, there are ups and downs, including with the savior. So, fight with a vigor and don’t give up on Him.

I embrace change but I will also fight for it!

Until next time,

 

* disclaimer: images from a google search

 

 

 

The Seed Is the WORD OF GOD

The seed of faith is the word of God not money. There is a lot of deception floating around about money being a seed. A lot of well meaning people fall into this farce but plain and simple the seed of faith is the word of God and it is planted in our hearts and produces the harvest of the fruit of the Spirit.

The greatest scheme of the enemy is to get us to distort the word of God because the word of God is what produces our harvest. We are to store treasures in heaven not bribe God with money to get a blessing. I hold on to this truth because it is the word of God that will bring my deliverance in all areas of life.

It’s not good works, it’s not going to church every Sunday, it’s not looking the part and saying the right things, but diligently depositing the word of God into the temple and believing that God will produce the increase!

Galatians 5:22-23 (NIV) “But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, forbearance, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control. Against such things there is no law.”

Wholeness is what God wants for us. He wants to make us whole! This means producing fruit in all areas of our lives. Whether it be self-control or showing love towards self and others, or having peace despite all circumstances, etc. These are the things God wants for us.

Another point I want to make is, we must work on ourselves before we can ever minister to others. We must allow the Holy Spirit to minister to us in this way first, being kind to ourselves first before we can ever do so for others. Sometimes God will enable us to help others along the way, but ultimately a relationship with God comes before ministry!

I am at a place where I am allowing God to minster to me. To bring me to a place of wholeness in Him and to rely solely on his Word alone.

This means more to me than any material goals I have. It means more to me than any other relationship I have. Because true peace comes from inside of us not the outside.

No one and no thing can fill the void in our hearts like God can. It is truly the Word of God that sets us free, every single day, step by step. A process we go through every day of our lives.

I learned something important. Sin can be conquered, Jesus told us he already did that. We do not fight sin as believers but TEMPTATION. There is a different. Sin leads to death and is a state. After we are delivered from a sin or a lifestyle/habit of disobedience, we are now walking in obedience and righteousness. We must now preserve this righteous state by resisting the devil aka temptation through prayer and feeding the spirit with God’s word. This is the example that Jesus gave is in the desert. He didn’t allow circumstances : being hungry and tired, deter him from his state of righteousness. He didn’t give into his flesh: literally his natural needs. We too can be like Christ because this he promised us! Cling to the promises of Christ! All that he has done, is freely given to us! What a mighty God we serve!

Money and the lust of the flesh will lead us astray if we put our confidence in that and twist the word for own selfish gain. Being a christian is rewarding, freeing and truly life changing but it comes with a price. It means we give up everything we once knew and take up the cross of Jesus. It means not always having our own way but submitting to a holy God. In time, this becomes our own nature. We feel joy in the things of God and are disgusted by things that God hates. But we must be willing to crucify, kill, destroy, annihilate the flesh. We must resurrect Godly boundaries and walk in humility and God given authority to speak, confess and believe what God promised. We will offend many because we no longer please the world but please God. They will never understand but we must be like Jesus and say ” I’m about my Father’s business.”

Source: https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Galatians+5%3A22-23

I Am Free At Last!

Everyday is a new day to praise the LORD.  It is a new day to talk to him and learn something new about him and about yourself. A new day to fellowship and connect with others. A new day to help someone rise out of their slump and encourage someone to keep striving. It is a new day to marvel at the power and love of God. It is a new day to hope and trust in the LORD.

Every time the sun rises, it is like a clean slate from yesterday. The troubles from yesterday mean nothing and we celebrate the newness of every new day. No accumulation of junk and burden.  This is the rest Christ has given us in his forgivenss. 

Because I am a Child of God I have rest.Peace follows me wherever I go. I am prepared for resistence, but I am neither afraid or angry. I am prepared to lose alot of things but I am not insecure. I am prepared for criticism but I am not ashamed of Christ.

There are many things I do not know or understand but I will not pretend that I have it all together. I am simply allowing God to take me where he is leading me and along the way I’m giving him the honor for it.

I have depended on my own strength for so long. It’s peaceful to rest in the strong arms of Papa God.

I am finally free to flow with the Holy Spirit. What a joy is that to me!

To finally break out of my shell, the rigid structure and routine of religion and law, and moving into the free and flowing power of the Holy Spirit.

 

God With US

The number 23 holds significance in my life at this present time.

I recieved money to take care of an important task for the week. It was exactly 23 dollars and I also had some spare change which covered everything I needed. 15 is also significant because I had hoped the bill would be no more than 15 and without me counting or making an effort, it came up to exactly 15 on the dot. So, after spending that money, the next day as I was preparing for church, I counted all my money and found extra in the deep folds of my purse. The total amount equaled to 23. The same exact I was given. I was amazed and thanked God. However, I couldnt forget about the number 23.

According to amazingword.blogspot.com, the biblical meaning of 23 means “God with us.”

The more I thanked God for his provision in my life big or small, the more I knew and trusted that he was taking care of me. I knew God was with me in every area of my life. I had no worries, he covers all my needs so I can focus on serving HIM.

I also looked up the number 15 and according to biblestudy.org, the number 15 means rest that comes after deliverance symbolized by the number 14. While the Lord told me to rest all of last year, that day was a sign or a confirmation that my deliverance and freedom to find rest in Christ was near. That rest covered my need to worry if I had enough to pay for what I needed. Spiritually, God’s rest means I can trust and be at peace knowing that he has more than enough to meet my needs!

God is always talking to us in many different ways. Staying true to the original purpose of this blog, this experience is like the quiet small whisper, the unexpected sign of God’s love and mercy in my life.

 

 

Obedience is Better than Sacrifice

Sometimes I have to remind myself who I am and who God is! Everything I do should be for God’s glory. Wisdom comes from God, my skills and talents and gifts comes from HIM .

 

I’ve reached a place in my life where “obedience is better than sacrifice” rings  true. Just because I do something considered right or good doesn’t mean it’s what God wanted for a specific situation. Honestly I believe and hold it in my heart, that God still talks to us today just like he did with those in biblical times. Why are we so reliant on our own personal understanding? God is personally here with us! His word is the standard we base everything on BUT what about our daily life choices? Is God just leaving us to interpret the scriptures and apply biblical prophecies where ever we see fit? No, the bible promises that we will know his voice, those that truly walk with HIM.

 

How many times I could have chosen to do something because it seemed right but not what God wanted for me at the time! Obedience is better than sacrifice and everything we do should give glory to God.

My prayer is that I become ever the more sensitive to the voice of God and his direction. That I will not depend on my own reasoning but wait on HIM! To God be all the glory now and forever!

 

But Samuel replied, “What is more pleasing to the LORD: your burnt offerings and sacrifices or your obedience to his voice? Listen! Obedience is better than sacrifice, and submission is better than offering the fat of rams.

1 Samuel 15:22 NLT

http://biblehub.com/1_samuel/15-22.htm

I Have Decided To Follow Jesus

Did you know that worship is more than just singing in church or at home?

I am still learning about worship and worship does involve music and dance and verbal praises to the Lord but there are times where I’m too tired to sing or dance. There are some days I am too sad to even lift up my eyes with gladness but in those bleak moments where I cannot do more than be alive, in my heart I am hoping and waiting and trusting in the Lord.  Every day I choose to serve him and honor him with my life. Lately, I’ve been declaring out loud that I choose to serve the Lord. I choose to acknowledge him. I choose to put on the invisible cloak of praise.  You might not always hear me say something but in my mind and heart I made a decision to follow Jesus. I made up my mind! There is no turning back.  In my heart I know he is faithful. I may not have an outward praise but my heart is fixed on the promises of God.

Outward worship has it’s place but let’s never forget the praises of the silent observer, the sick, or mute.

 

Our Walk With God is More Than a Set of Rituals.

So many times we are guilt tripped into reading the bible and praying. It should not be a chore or a ritual but a desire to be with God. The bible doesn’t do much for the unbeliever or those with a hardened heart, so it has no mystical power. It is a life manual, a history book, a biography or a series of stories that all point to Christ and his gospel message of repentance and forgiveness. It is a book of promises for those that believe. The bible in itself and the act of reading it means nothing if it’s not changing the heart and renewing the mind.

Sometimes it becomes a burden to open the bible or pray but honestly that’s only because we make it a chore and a ritual to be done or else we are no longer children of God. False lies of satan. We are saved by Grace, the grace of God. In God, our burdens are made light. This is one of them. Serve God with joy!

I will Enter Your Rest

The Sabbath day was created for us as a way to slow down and relax after work. God did just that. He showed us how to live through example. All work but no rest causes build up of stress and negative emotions that can lead to illness. I know this from experience.

 

Even simply worrying over things can build stress. Honoring the Sabbath is more than just physical rest but also mental and emotional rest. Jesus is the ultimate source of rest. I find that through prayer, thanksgiving (gratefulness/thankfulness) and being content with who we are,where we are and who God is we find complete peace.

I had a dream that I will never forget. In that dream I was asked why I wasn’t dead but since I’m alive I should rest. REST.

Over and over God has reminded me how important it was for me to rest. I want everything done now; I must do it myself because only I can do it best and my self worth was tied into performance. If I didn’t get everything done at a set time I was worthless and a failure. I also took on other people’s problems in excess. I love helping others and expressing concern but constant whining and negativity left me drained. I always say, a person will accept help when they want change. I cannot fix anyone and so I don’t need to sit around being everyone’s therapist.

I have slowly implemented ways to reduce physical stress through OCCASIONAL exercise, and breathing techniques, avoiding stressful food and environments. Mentally changing the way I see things and allowing myself time to rationalize my feelings and finding ways around situations. No more running away but no more worrying either. Worrying is another way to saying to God ” I don’t trust in you”. It’s ok to have concerns but that’s why the bible tells us to go to God in prayer about everything.

When I’m tired I will rest. Everyday make time to rest and talk to God. Simply do nothing. Lay still; at home or even in the sun. Have ONE DAY where you don’t cook anything, use electronics, talk to anyone unless for emergencies. Solitude is important. I always say that if a person cannot be alone with themselves, they have an issue.

Embrace a lifestyle that is not acceptable by Western Society. There was one thing I looked forward to growing up and it was having freedom. To me, being a adult not only meant having responsibilities but the freedom to create a life that makes you happy. You can choose exactly how you spend your time. I feel that money has become a burden more than a source of comfort and we spend our time living for status and wealth we never enjoy. The bible also talks about this in Ecclesiastes. There is a time for everything under the sun and what is the point in working hard but not enjoying the fruits of your labor?

Money should work for you, not the other way around. Remember, you are the goal and everything else is the means. You are the end to every goal knowing that by the grace of God every need will be met. I personally don’t think God wanted us to suffer for the natural things in life which is why Jesus told us not to worry about food or clothes like the heathens do.

Exodus is another book that displays the graciousness of God, supplying all that the Israelite needed to get through a very rough time in their history. God gave them the 10 commandants as a way to live in harmony with each other and to have peace of mind within. It is for our benefit that God gave us such rules. It was never meant to keep us from experiencing freedom but actually gives us complete freedom.

I choose from today to honor the Sabbath.