Life Lesson: When Quitting Is No Longer An Option

In the past, when bad days would happen I would let myself believe that quitting was better than fighting and living for tomorrow. When a disappointment or setback would occur, I would suffer a dramatic low that I never thought I could come back from. For so long, nonstop I allowed this destructive behavior to determine my outlook on life both present and future. This way of thinking allowed deep roots to form in my life that made it almost impossible to see myself as victorious. I would convince myself over and over how tomorrow wouldn’t come, opportunities wouldn’t happen and I would always be drowning in sorrow. Why was that? Truth is, giving up always seems easier than sticking it out. As far back as I could remember, I’ve relied on my emotions, those raw deep feelings to be the driving force in my life. I allowed those raw deep feelings lead me to a prison of suspension. I had begun to feel caged in by my doubts, fears, and worries. I allowed them to overshadow my purpose, destiny, and drive.

But when I had enough of the “just getting by” lifestyle I was leading I finally made a change. I choose life. Please believe when I say it’s hard choosing life because it involves a lot of dead weight and dead things to be killed off. When you choose life, you have to get rid of everything, your mindset, behavior and your will in order to be transformed.

It took a lot of crying, a lot of waiting, of a lot of falling and fighting to get back up, but with every loss I struggled with I now see it was all gains that will always outweigh.  To the moments in my life where I was confused, frustrated, and bitter it’s not replaced with confidence, assurance, and a bittersweet victory.

The lesson I had to learn was there is a true way to giving up in so to really win and that’s to give up to Jesus Christ. That surrendering your heart, mind, and soul to Him was the only way to have total victory. To dig so deep into the Word of God that you lose yourself guarantees that you find him and you’re true self.

Looking back on each and every time I wanted to quit, each and every time I stopped swinging and let my head hung long that was the time God reached down, placed His hands on me and prayed for me. Don’t ever think for one second that while you’re fighting this fight, while you are struggling to get through that you are the only one. No, if your family, your friends, or even the saints don’t know trust and believe God knows. He sees you in that abusive relationship, He sees you at the doctor’s office trying to get a cure, He sees you at work dealing with that boss and He is stretching out His hand praying for you. Truly, no weapon, no amount of defeat can keep you from what God has destined for you to have. I am a living witness!

For years I thought I wasn’t going to make it, I let the devil make me believe that victory wouldn’t be mine but I’m writing from the comfort of my home to tell you it’s time to spring forth. It’s time to rise up and walk! All you have to do is say,  “In the name of Jesus Christ” and it gives an invitation for your Father in Heaven to fight on your behalf. You haven’t lost the fight, there is still a chance for you to overcome. It’s time to make up your mind that quitting is no longer an option!

Life Lesson: You Are Diamonds

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My message for mothers and woman today is don’t cheapen yourself on the account of others. I can’t tell you how important it is as a wife and mother to know your self-worth. Having a high standard of self-worth produces high self-esteem, confidence, and self-respect that is too precious to trade in or exchange. A confident woman doesn’t allow abusive relationships to define their self-worth. A self-respecting wife won’t force herself to die in her marriage but find ways to thrive with or without her spouse. A confident mom lives, breathes and nurtures her children with power and strength because she fears nothing.

Living like a diamond forces life to back off and let you shine. Life of an assured woman means not stopping at the no’s and you can’t’s that’s always being thrown in your face. Having confidence in how God created you births tenacity and a persevering spirit that can overcome anything. Having confident isn’t about being puffed up or arrogant but being content with the gifts, strengths, and flaws that God has given each of us to work with. I’m certainly not here to promote bragging or pride but to share with you the freedom in being a strong diamond of a gal.

So I hope after my elaborate introduction you’re asking yourself, “Well, how do I live a diamond?”

  1. By accepting that God loves you.

If you don’t believe God is real, that Jesus Christ died for our sins and rose again then there isn’t much I can do for you. True confidence doesn’t appear within ourselves but it comes from the almighty Creator. The big G-O-D himself made us his top priority and wanted us to have nothing short of the best. Believing is just the beginning. You have to live, breathe, sleep and eat with the truth that God values us all. Why would you not accept all that love? Realize that God loves you permanently!

2. Living with love in your heart for others.

You want that confidence in your walk, that glow of the holy spirit upon your life you have to live your life through the lenses of love. Everything you go through — He loves me — so it has to work out. Even when friends, family, and strangers try to deter you from believing — act in love. Having a rich, quality lifestyle doesn’t just come from working hard on behalf of yourself but going the extra mile for someone else. Luke 6:31 and 35 say to do to others what you want to be given to you. If you want love in life then love others freely without looking for anything in return.

3. Saying goodbye to insecurities by reading the Word of God.

This is the best way to feed your faith and starve your doubts. If you’ve been dealing with insecurities, baggage from the past and past pain then open a Bible! There are scriptures after scriptures that will boost your soul into the confident, God-fearing woman you are destined to be. Philippians 1:6 will tell you that he started something great inside you and he won’t stop until it’s completed. And if you are reading this with doubt in your heart, just know that you aren’t confident that Proverbs 3:26 says that God will be your confidence and he will keep you.

And the amazing part of this…there is so much more. Unlock all that God is waiting to give in your life. Live with assurance that God desires you, he wants the best for and he hates to see his diamond get scuffed up or damaged. Celebrate your one-of-a-kind design and witness God accomplish great things in your life. Don’t shy away from all that God is calling for you to have.

 

Life Lesson: Have Faith

 

FAITH IN GOD.pngSome might say that Christianity is just another religion. Some might ridicule and talk negatively about how Christians are hypocrites, lunatics, and judgmental Jesus loving freaks. My purpose isn’t to argue what others say, but to share what God says and what the Word of God says.

I’ve been blessed to have been born and raised in a God loving, church going home. Not a lot of people (young or old) can say that. Some are from broken homes with only one parent, no parents, no family or friends to rely on. Yet, amongst all the possibilities, I was given the opportunity to be raised in a family of eight taught on believing in Jesus Christ.

From birth, I was raised to believe that God made the whole universe (Genesis 1:1-31; Colossians 1:16; Isaiah 45:12). I was taught to have faith and believe the Almighty God was to take care of his people. I believe that God is good no matter what happens. I believe Jesus Christ was born from a virgin, here to save mankind. He died on the cross, conquered death, hell, and the grave and three days later he arose. Some might say that’s crazy but to each their own. I was taught that my faith should always be bigger than my fears and doubts.

 

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Though it took some growing up, I got serious about my faith when I turned 11 years old. I got baptized and years later I got the holy ghost. I remember when I thought I had the holy ghost I was scared. I didn’t want to fake having the holy ghost and deceive myself. I was petrified because I didn’t want to mock God in any way.  For months I constantly checked, gave myself tests and wondered if I truly had the holy ghost. After months and months of keeping it quiet, I realized that I had it after all. How? When I was no longer terrified about the rapture but instead I looked forward to it because I felt steady and strong.

Before I was scared out of my mind about missing the rapture. I would have dreams about me getting left behind and my family would go to heaven without me. Whenever someone brought up something about the rapture or Revelation I felt overcome with conviction and fear. God was patient, loving and guided me to assurance through his Word and hearing the Word of God at church. I was calm and a growing assurance within made me strong in my faith that I was a child of God.

 

From that point on, I grew up learning and growing in Christ. I was passionate about the Word of God. I’d stay up hours and hours reading and studying the Bible. I wanted to know everything from cover to cover. But as I grew, I allowed things and life to get in the way of my love for God. It’s no joke how easy you can drift to worrying about school, bills, friends (so-called friends), parties, events, boyfriends, husbands, and kids, and then you don’t even realize how far away you’ve moved from God.

It wasn’t until I leisurely went to the library and rented the novel, “Left Behind” by Tim LaHaye and Jerry B. Jenkins. It’s funny because I know the story, I’ve seen the movies and I was pushed to take this book out anyway. Page by page without me even knowing God was getting my attention on matters I too gleefully ignored. I was led from the book to watch the movie Left Behind (the version with Nicholas Cage) on Netflix. That same familiar feeling came swooping in before the movie ended.

 

CONVICTION.jpgI instantly knew that I’ve drifted away from God.  I’ve backslidden and departed from my first love. It’s crazy how far a person can drift before they realize how deep they are in the water. I couldn’t watch the movie without the feeling of uncertainty and fear creep over me. Can I confidently say that if the rapture took place that I would make it? The fact that I had to question it, obviously meant no. When the movie was over, I had to admit to myself that I got distracted. My priority for God was no longer my top priority.

The movie was over and God finally got through to me. Or rather, I was open to listening finally.  I prayed and asked for forgiveness. God must’ve have tried to get my attention countless times and I was caught up in life. I’ve abused his love, kindness, and favor in my life for things that are nothing compared to how awesome he is. I realized I had to turn away from my lazy, selfish habits and refocus myself to chasing after Him. I asked God to guide me, lead me, and speak to me at how I can begin walking closer to Him. Then it hit me!

For weeks, I’ve been trying to start a “My Faith” and “My Marriage” segment to my blog. I didn’t know how to start or when to start and what to write about. After realizing, admitting, and repenting to God for ignoring him and following my own heart I saw an opportunity. I’ve been wanting to share my faith with others but quickly got swept away from life and responsibilities.  I pushed aside God all because I didn’t come up with something on my own. I should know better that what God has planned in his own timely is always better than my own.

Though I’m not happy that I drifted away, I’m grateful my eyes have been opened and reminded about what’s truly important. It’s better to grow in grace instead of out of it. But, good or bad God knows just what to do to direct us on the right path. I don’t want to ever forget, never neglect the one thing that has kept me steady. God has loved me unconditionally and he has always been there for me. There are times when I was alone, was betrayed, was pushed aside and he always comforted. It was foolish of me to push aside my first love because he truly first loved me.

 

Today is My Third Anniversary

 

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For my love,

Happy third year anniversary to my best friend. Three years is nothing compared to the rest of our lives.  Since I was 15, I’ve done so much growing and learning, and you’ve only made my life so much more meaningful. We went from two separate individuals to being and living as one. Though our wedding day was far from perfect, leaving, cleaving and becoming has been nothing short of amazing. Despite all the things we didn’t have, I cherish every day that we have with each other.IMG_1356

I remember all the times you brought a smile to my face, made me laugh and even cry. I smile when I think about all the times we comforted each other, encouraged each other, and loved. I look forward to days to come when you let your love shine on me. You’ve been a gentleman, so caring, loving, and upstanding. I am proud that you call me your wife. This journey hasn’t been easy, but it’s been worthwhile. The past 1,080 days have been filled with good, bad, ugly, joy, pain, grief, disappointment and happiness. You’ve given me headaches and peace, joy and sorrow. And three years is just the beginning of the rest of our lives.

You’ve given me the best of both and I don’t take our life for granted. I believe God connected us long before we got married. We never could stay apart from each other long, try as we might. The amazing part of our love and relationship  is that it never felt forced or rushed but right on time. That’s how I knew you were sent from God because I felt content, with you. You’ve always been by my side and you managed to give me goosebumps every single time. I’m just grateful we both were obedient to what God planned for us.

Three years later and all I want to do with you is to grow in the grace and knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. To him be glory both now and forever! Amen.”(2 Peter 3:18) I definitely don’t want to waste another second apart and I can’t wait for you to return back to me. Reflecting back on the yesterday’s brings hope for more to come. I love you and I miss you.

Life Lesson: Don’t Waste Your Time…

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Don’t waste time! Not one minute. Easy and simple right? Psalms 90:10 says, “So teach us to number our days, that we may gain a heart of wisdom.” I hate to raise my hand, but I have spent time frivolously. Days where I could have spent more time with God, studying, staying out of trouble, laughing with friends. Instead of arguing, fighting, pouting, kicking and screaming against everything. This year learn to appreciate the time we are given. Be open to hearing wisdom more and ignore foolishness more. Every day you wait to accomplish a goal or dream is a day you won’t get back. I could even sit here and waste time thinking about the past. Pondering on hypotheticals only lead you to a mountain of regrettable. Don’t do it!

Get up, stretch and wash your hands of the past. Acknowledge that it’s done, over with and focus on moving on. If you went through a horrible breakup, cleanse yourself, learn your mistakes and move forward. If you didn’t make the best financial decisions, focus on starting new ones. Don’t ponder on what you could’ve or should’ve done because unless you know how to time travel; you or I can’t do anything about it.

Ephesians 5:15-16 says, “See then that you walk circumspectly, not as fools but as wise, redeeming the time, because days are evil.” Keep excuses from your lips this year! Welcome opportunities to challenge yourself, especially if they lead you closer to your goals. Ask yourself,  “What am I doing today that gets me closer to my life goals?” Don’t get sidetracked or distracted. Don’t get caught up in family or friends trying to party late when you know you have to work or study tomorrow. Don’t get wrapped up in people who’s the main agenda is to keep you distracted. If you find yourself sidetracked, reflect over your resolution list and get your head in the game.

Don’t panic! There were A LOT of things I couldn’t accomplish in 2015, it doesn’t mean in 2016 that I will go through the same results. Learn from this year and only carry with you the  tools that will bring you success. Absolutely don’t carry baggage. If you’re reading this post and you know you got baggage, let go. It slows you down and weighs you down. Baggage isn’t something you should accessorize with your outfits.

LETS GO.jpgMake your resolution list clear, specific and detailed. Appropriate the amount of time needed to accomplish day to day tasks. Schedule time for the Lord, family, others, and yourself. Ecclesiastes 3:1-8 tells me that there is a time to laugh, cry, peace, fight, learn, grow, keep, lose. Learn those times. Use your time wisely this 2016. Pray and ask God to help you manage the time given to you and ask for strength to not get stressed or overwhelmed. Take this New Year a day at a time.

 

 

 

Life Lesson: My Voice Has Power

I’ve shared before how much I love writing and how writing gives me a voice. But, my writing isn’t just for me but for you and importantly for God. What I say and how I say it has power. In the Bible, Proverbs 18:21 says that what we say can either bring death or life. I know it’s pretty drastic but really think when you compliment someone you brighten their day and when you say something negative it can bring them down.

As a believer in Christ, it’s only that I desire to affect people positively with my words too! I want nothing more than my words to comfort, encourage, and empower you. Obviously, you want to hear something comforting and familiar. I love reading articles or stories about people that have been where I’ve been. Stories that allow me to release my emotional baggage, calm down and refresh are powerful. Comfort brings loved ones together. If you ever found yourself nodding to something you heard because it touched you, that’s what I want my words to do.

Encouraging words keep the fight strong in us! Without an encouraging quote or motivational story, we ALL would have given up a long time ago. Those times when the sky is dark and no one is around to help, it’s uplifting to stumble across words to a song or a poem. Stories like that let me know that there is so much fighting for. My story and your story is worth fighting for and sharing!

My favorite thing to do is empower! Empowering others make me happy. When I see an empowered chick walking down the street in her heels I got no choice but to compliment because she is walking in her power (and I want those shoes!). I love coming across sites and blogs that empower me to dream of great dreams and light bulb ideas. I feel pumped and sorta invincible because I’m in that mindset that I won’t let anything stop me from accomplishing greatness.

I want to see you soar and see you accomplish your dreams. I hope that whatever blog post I post or link I share pushes you to try harder and work harder to accomplish it. I write because it could open the door for someone else to do something incredibly. I want to remind you that you can make it. I want to encourage you that when you are tired, don’t quit! I want to comfort you because I’ve been mad, disappointed, hurt and you can overcome just like me.I hope that sharing my story and my life will see that you really can do and be anything you want to despite your circumstances or your past.

Life Lesson: Having Strength Against Opposition

  IMG_1683 “Our fight is not against people on earth. We are fighting against the rulers and authorities and the powers of this world’s darkness. We are fighting against the spiritual powers of evil in the heavenly places.” (ERV) Ephesians 6:12

This scripture reminded me of a time when my husband was extremely stressed and worried. Struggling where money was going to come from and where it was going to go. Stressed about the well-being of his family, their safety and happiness. Although he didn’t want to show it, he was tense. He was scared that he wasn’t going to make it, wasn’t going to be “a man” and that I would leave (he should know better). Countless of arguments about others, him worrying what others think, what others would say and do. It would make me furious! Now I’m no man, but I can only imagine handling all the pressure and weight of being the head of the household. Even though I love him and try to be there to help, I can’t always fight his battles.

I never could understand why people paid so much attention and worry over people who can’t give or take anything away. And even if they could, God is literally the only one who can snatch it right back! I’ve never really carried opinions of others so heavily, especially when I was confident in God, what he told me, and the dreams and passions he placed in me. My husband, on the other hand, has always been a little more attentive of other opinions.

For all wives, you know the last thing you want in your marriage is a distracted, overwhelmed, stressed man. You need your man focused on God, family, work (paying bills). It bothers me when someone got the nerve to mess with my man! (Lol) The fight we really should be focused on is the war against everything not like God!

Worrying about enemies, co-workers, horrible bosses, in-laws, parents, church folk– allowing everyone to take away your peace, joy, and faith….your focus on the vision, your destiny, all so you can appease to others who plainly can’t put you in heaven or hell. That’s why they do it, just so your focus on God and your goals aren’t top priority. How you going to move forward while looking back? You see why I was frustrated? The fight isn’t against others, but against Satan!

 29309_422351732151_3645403_nAs long as God knows what I’m doing and how I’m working hard to make him pleased – everyone else can just sit and watch. My reputation doesn’t mean nothing when the most important person isn’t saying, “Well done good and faithful servant.” (Matthew 25:21-23; Luke 19:17) I’m pretty sure none of us were birthed to impress others. Wear your struggles proudly, it ‘s what makes you the man or woman of God that he will use to bring others to Christ. Don’t be ashamed about struggling, everyone is just some are better at hiding it. Struggling births victoryhow else are you going to win?

Don’t get sore about how you started and where you are right now in finances, social status, work, or school but stay focused on how the rest of your journey will go. Ups and downs are inevitable, learn to jump on Paul’s bandwagon and rejoice in the midst of trials (Romans 5:3-10; 1 Peter 1:6-9). Suffering and sometimes being embarrassed builds character and appreciation – makes you humbly dependent on God. So don’t fret over others who don’t realize that the process you’re in is going to propel you to greatness. I can’t think of one person in the Bible without a flaw, hang-up, horrible past, addiction, criminal record, bad reputation that weren’t used by God. Don’t worry if some or none might not understand, agree, or support. You might get a million no’s from everyone else, but the only yes you need is from God. Don’t let anyone stop you! Have a made up mind to fight your way out of your situation and if you gotta look crazy in order to make it well get to looking crazy.