29

This year my birthday I find myself wondering where life will take me next. Closing out the last year of my 20’s feeling this way overwhelms me because it reminds me I am not a kid anymore. And when you get to a place like that you feel like you only have one of two options – give up, or keep going. Stay acting like a child, or grow up. But as easy as that is to say, human hearts are way too complex to make a decision like that and stick with it. One day you’ll feel strong, the next you feel powerless. (Or maybe that’s just me?)

One of the main lessons I have to learn as I get older is that it’s ok to FEEL both. Sad and happy, strong and weak. It’s part of growing up. It’s part of growing. I am HUMAN. And we humans are so flawed in our perfectness.

I used to say a lot “I want to feel better”, but each day has taught me that feeling better is only a temporary fix. We need to get BETTER at feeling. Cause everyday, we feel. The good, the bad, all of it. Let me tell you honestly, I didn’t feel good yesterday. But I had to let myself feel whatever I was feeling, because that is how we get to know ourselves.

I am a dramatic, emotional, girly, big hearted, best friend loving, philosophical thinking, loyal comical person who loves music and cries during movies and never finished college cause she can’t finish anything. I’m so imperfectly perfect; but I’m just me, and regardless of how I feel one day to the next, good or bad – I’m stuck with this girl for the rest of her life… this mind – as crazy as it is, this body – as imperfect as it is, this soul – that will live and love forever…29 years, and I feel like I’m just getting to know, accept and love myself.

This birthday, my gift to myself is forgiveness, grace, and tenderness towards my heart regardless of anything that life brings to me this next year; no matter what I’m feeling, I will know it’s all motions and they don’t stop. So I will be gentle with myself, I will thank God for all that he created me to be, past present and future. And I’ll love that girl that’s about to be 30! ❤️ Holy shiiieeetttt! I’m 29 😩

Much A’do about Nothing

This might be weird but I used to read Shakespeare a lot.

I’m not gonna lie, half the time I didn’t know wtf I was reading but I loved it. The language was so different but it said something that I could understand if I wanted to. I would also watch YouTube videos of the plays after trying to read them so I could watch the characters act out these Shakespearean conversations.

My favorites Shakespeare play is “Much A’do about Nothing”. It’s basically a story about murder because of a rumor about someone’s virginity being lost.. not making this up… but really , it IS, a story of two young princes who are to marry two sisters. They are all madly in love and speak romance to each other all the days long. It’s beautiful, but this romance turns to ruin after a rumor starts about one of the sisters. Anyways, someone dies yatayata…really the story is basically about how a big deal was made about nothing, much ado about nothing. But the words of the story make up why it’s so good to me. It makes you feel. All the feels. It’s all about love, tragedy…Just like music. I loveeee music. It tells a story, the words. I think one of the reasons I love writing so much is because it always tells a story. And it can really be a story about anything.. I mean Shakespeare literally made up words for crying out loud, he has his own language.

But to be honest, I have not told any stories lately. Not even to myself. The only stories is the random and sometimes overwhelming thoughts I hear day and night that I keep inside…Stories that aren’t necessarily of any substance and some times left unaddressed cause havoc in my realities. I need to purge them. I am a writer!

I think, maybe I am scared to see how I feel? To write, you must focus on something, and sometimes the feeling isn’t good. Sometimes, it is. Or maybe it is that I am just not putting effort to purge my thoughts into words because I know just like any writer knows, you have to write, to be a writer. Again, fear.

Writing has always been my gift. People tell me – write! My grandmother God rest her soul literally yelled at me when I read all my poems to her. I remember the look in her face like girl if you don’t I’m gonna steal your stuff and get it published myself.

I used to write on this blog. But now I look back at all I’ve written and it’s not really me anymore. I’ve grown. And I find myself so busy with life that I forget to share my gift with myself and the world. But if I’m being honest with myself, the truth is, I NEED to write. And I can’t be scared of what comes out because at the end of the day it will be a story about something that might just matter to someone else. Look at Shakespeare – he wrote stories of love and war, murder and crazy marriages (don’t get me started in Ms. Juliet and her bright ideas), hundreds of years ago that I used to read because I loved the stories.

Writers, they write. Just like lovers love. And I am both.

“I do love nothing in the world so well as you- is not that strange? – Much A’do about Nothing

A new Understanding 

There are somethings that are not meant to be understood,

Like how we as humans are made of the same substance as the stars.

Or how the battles we face in life are usually the most useful tools 

In helping us become who we were destined to be. 

We will never understand how a single encounter with someone,

Can change everything we thought we knew 

About the hearts of those who we find ourselves loving.

How can we understand, 

That sometimes – there is a better plan for us, 

Than the one we had for ourselves?

I try not to understand things like that, 

Because they can’t be understood.

But there are things, I am learning to understand.

Things that never made as much seanse, 

Until you…

Things like, how grace can take a situation

Meant to pull you away from someone you love,

And help you to love them better. 

Or how perfection is not really worth

All the glitter and gold that most think it is. 

I understand now that it is in our imperfections that we learn to love ourselves. 

Because it means more to be open and broken , than to be closed and ridged. 

And loving yourself in your brokenness beats pretending you’re ok any day. 

I understand that our scars, your scars – 

Goodness! 

I understand how beautiful they are…

I understand,

That expectations limit love, in a way

That i don’t want to partake in. 

That id rather have less expectancy,

And more faith.

Patience, is understandable with you.

Taking my time, I understand

Is not a weakness – but an opportunity to take something vast, 

And make it into something deep. 

Trust.

I never trusted the future. 

But you’re teaching me to trust God with my future. 

Because I understand, that no matter what happens in life,

The reasons are written,

The reason you are here, in my heart and in my head.

And the reason I am there, in the midst of your season, you think your meant to be lonely in.

And I understand, how perfectly OK it is, 

To be happy, without waiting for something catastrophic to happen.

Because believe me, that was a misunderstanding I have had since forever.

I understand that my character, 

Can influence more than my words.

And that to label or judge, would only tell you a story,

About who I am.

So I understand how important it is to speak life over the ones I love. 

And inspire them.

And be available to them. 

And cherish them.

I hope you understand, 

That you help me understand things,

That I never understood. 

And you might not understand what that means, 

But – There are somethings that are not meant to be understood.

 

For the broken and repentant hearts 

You do not desire a sacrifice, or I would offer one. You do not want a burnt offering. The sacrifice you desire is a broken spirit. You will not reject a broken and repentant heart, O God. Psalms 51:16-17

Submitting to God during a season of brokenness can be hard. We want to figure it all out. Be “normal”, feel “better”. Know what the answers are to our deepest fears and desires. Like hello, can’t I just be healthy without having to deal with the broken parts of me? 

But what about the work he wants to do in you in the midst of your “rock bottom”? What about the amazing things he’s going to use to fill in the cracks of our broken hearts? To be broken is beautiful. Because it means you’ve loved. And it’s even more beautiful because He want nothing more than to have all of you – broken and all. 
So we should probably stop trying to figure it all out….
Don’t try to DO, instead – just BE. 

Don’t try to FIX, instead – just HEAL.

Don’t try to UNDERSTAND, instead – just TRUST.

Talking to myself here. How wonderful a thought – that God doesn’t require a ritual of repentance.. all he wants sis every piece of me, in submission and in a position for restoration. That healing, that supernatural healing is real, and waiting for us. 

And frankly – idk about you, but I’m ready for a healing I’ve never experienced before. I’m ready for God to move in me like never before. Broken and all….

I’d really like your Horses.. – God

“God wants to give you so much. In fact, the book of Ephesians says that everything He has is yours. But, He asks you to give everything that is yours to him.”

I read a story the other day, about a woman who’s uncle owned a horse farm. She was so fascinated by them that it birthed a dream in her since she was a little girl to own horses, to work with horses, to do something in her life dedicated to the beautiful animals. Years went by, and she became an adult. She didn’t end up working with horses. But, she still dreaming of owning a horse farm at some point in life. She said that God convicted her spirit one day, and said to her ..

“I would really like your horses”.

She had been fixated on this dream, so much so that God was asking her to give it back to him. Not even asking, but quietly stating, that he would love it if she was willing to give it to Him. It reminded me, that we don’t always get to choose our sacrifices. Sometimes, God will ask us for the one thing, that if we had a choice – we would NEVER sacrifice. And how unfair is that thought, that God would ask you to give up a dream that you have in your heart, for Him. To CHOOSE Him over that dream. If He knows our hearts desires, why would He require such a thing from us?

Oh if I could just wrap my head around the way God sees things I would have a great answer for this question posed in my heart right now. Why, God? And what. What am I willing to sacrifice? What have you already asked me to sacrifice? The yearning for a husband is the one thing that comes to mind. The dream of another human being loving me more than I could fathom. The satisfaction of having a partner in this season of life. Ugh, I see so many others who have that, and I DREAM of it. Sometimes, I want it so bad that I cry because I don’t have it. YES – this is me being honest and real. Don’t get me wrong – I love to love myself, I enjoy this time in my life where I am single. I have found a joy that I never knew I could experience being single – like really single. But deep down, there is a yearning for something I have not yet experienced, and it is a dream I have to learn to let go of and let God move in. See, God didn’t tell me He’d really like my horse. But He did tell me, “I’d really like your heart…”

My heart. It’s the one thing I have given away the most, and one of the most prominent things that makes me the me that people love so much. No it’s not my smile, or my looks. It’s not my clothes or the way I do my makeup. It’s my heart. What a sacrifice it would be.. to give it it him – means it is no longer in my hands. It is MY heart after all. And yet – His words say that He asks me to give him everything that is mine so that I can have all that HE has for me. He has been asking me for my heart since I met him @ age 21. He’s been asking me to give up this dream of “true love” and to realize that He is, and always has been, and always WILL be  – my one true love. Husband or not. Boyfriend or not. It is one of the first devotions I ever wrote – when I read the story of David, and how all God was looking for was a willing heart over an able appearance. Davids gave his HEART to God. And God gave Him so much in return. David still messed up, and still made mistakes, but it was because of His HEART that he was able to be used by God to such extents that he was. It was His heart hidden in God that gave him the inspiration, the yearning, the words to write Psalms that to this day, I lean into. When I give Him my heart, He never leaves me. Or forsakes me. I may be driven to despair, persecuted, hard pressed on every side, but His love, with my heart in His hands, would preserve through it all. If only I could sacrifice that one thing for HIM.

Now, I won’t ask you, what are you willing to sacrifice? What dream are you willing to give back to Him so that He can work through you and in you the way He needs. What are horses in your life is He telling you He would really like. I wont ask you – is it your finances? Your career? Your relationships? I wont ask you is it your past, or your idea of what your future should look like? I won’t ask you press into this and meditate on it. I tell you that whatever it is – you can give it up. And I won’t tell you that He will replace it – ten fold. May be not the way you thought – but He knows your desires and what you need. I won’t tell you that He loves you enough to not leave you where you are when you give it up to Him. Instead I will ask myself –

What am I willing to sacrifice? That secret desire to be loved by a man? To have someone to take me out to fancy restaurants, watch Netflix till we fall asleep, laugh and make memories with? No it’s not that. God doesn’t just want those timid thoughts of romance. No that is not what He would “really like” He wants more from me. He wants my heart. My heart. I believe that is my horse.

Freedom.

I’ve been thinking lately about the word freedom. What it truly means, and how I can best attain it in my everyday walk with God. 

Not freedom in the legalistic sense – but freedom from within. Sometimes, I catch myself feeling free – while driving with the windows down as I sing along to my favorite songs, or when I’m laughing so hard with my friends I can’t breathe. Sometimes I’ll be doing my make up, and while I look in the mirror, a sense of weightlessness overcomes me. I immediately become aware of how free I feel and wonder if it’s real. I wonder – am I really this happy, for no reason? Am I even ALLOWED to be happy like this? 

For so long, a spirit of depression hovered over me like a cloud. No matter what – even in those moments I felt free, it was just temporary…And it was usually when I was doing something to mask the pain I was feeling. In reality I was trapped inside my own prison, and the illusion of freedom would shatter once I became aware of it. It didn’t matter that I had the key to let me out all along either, because being in that prison, although torturous – was familiar and safe for me. That’s the thing  about depression. It’s horrid, but it’s familiar for those who experience it. Freedom is alittle less predictable, but only because it’s such a foreign concept.

But Gods been doing such a work in me. I even remember as I write, the moment he delivered me from the bondage of depression and how crazy it was to start experiencing freedom without the shattered illusion afterwards. It was unfamiliar, and uncomfortable to be ok with being content. Even now when I go through hard times, it’s different…I’m free… Free to cry, or be sad. Free to be happy and present in any moment. I’m free to be whatever I want, really. Entrapment has lost its appeal, and I crave to experience the unknown beauty of living a life fully emerged in freedom. 

The reason I share this is because so many of us think we have to be ready for something catastrophic to happen every moment because that’s how life’s always been for us – a mess. We don’t enjoy the smile offered by a stranger, we don’t notice the clear skies ahead. The weight has become so normal to us that to NOT carry it feels wrong. But freedom is not something we can carry. It’s a weightless gift that gives us the ability to be totally and completely present with ourselves at any given moment. To be free means to be there – wherever you are, and feel the breathe in your lungs. It means to give yourself permission. It’s not about being happy all the time, it’s about being what you are, and letting yourself fully experience it without trying to change it. 

I can’t explain how I went from bondage to freedom in a blog post to give you advice on how to do the same. One thing I will say, is that expectations of what things should look like, I believe, is one of the biggest roadblocks to experiencing real freedom. You can’t be someone who holds on to “what if”and “what is” at the same time. You have to let one go.  And you learn how to do this by trusting that Gods plans are always greater than our own. Embracing His plan for your life allows the experience of “what is” to become more important than anything else – because you understand that is where freedom truly lies. If you can master the understanding of this, then you ultimately give God permission to change you in this area. 

In those moments of freedom I experience, I am more connected to God then ever. Not just because the cloud of depressions gone, but because I am fully aware of myself. Even though it feels strange or unfamiliar – I’m aware of it. I keep singing and gently embrace the feeling without trying to change it. I get all the tears out without trying to stop them. I get all the giggles out without trying to count them, and in that moment, the freedom that presents itself is transformative. It helps me heal, allows me grow, and helps me to understand more about who I am as a person and a woman; free to be me. 

He’s in the midst of the storm

Thinking back to the first time I said Yes to A relationship with Christ. I was 21, and it was on a retreat. I remember being so high that weekend! Not from the normal things I would use to feel high…but on a supernatural medicine called Jesus. It was the first time I ever had a personal, tangible encounter with God where he spoke to me through a woman who didn’t even know English. It was one of the most magical, romantic weekends of my life. God moved in my life in more than one way, and it was nothing Id ever even known was possible. But when I came home, that quickly faded away. The high did not last, and so I sought out the things I knew would make me feel better. Things got way worse than they were before, and I remember thinking that what happened on that retreat was too fragile to be brought home. I left it right there, in my memory, and also somewhere deep in my heart. 
When I say things got worse after coming home I mean – way worse! The next year of my life was filled with a lot of pain and heartbreak, and a lot of trying to numb that pain by any means necessary. The wave finally broke the night I was sent to a psychiatric hospital because I was deemed “suicidal”. I had never felt so alone and abandoned in my life! Where was this Jesus that I experienced that weekend? Had He fled my heart the moment I turned to my old ways? I was angry, confused, and restless for a healing that I felt I didn’t deserve because I was the one that made the choices and ended up where I was, at the rock solid bottom.
I share this with you all because now I understand. God met me where I was at in that moment. In all truth, He allowed me to travel that path that led me there. He reached down into that pit and He drew me closer to Him. He had been doing it since that weekend, I just couldn’t understand it. I was bound by sin and by shame. I was too blinded by my hurt to even see that the work He began when I opened up my heart to him was just the BEGINNING! 
I know that it’s hard sometimes to understand what the hell is going on. It’s hard to see the destination in the midst of the part of the journey that’s filled with pain and hurt. It’s hard to wrap our flesh around the fact that Gods ways are not the same as ours. He heard my prayers that weekend, He made His home in my heart. And I brought him home with me from that safe place He created for me on that retreat. He was in the storm with me. And when it was time, he drew me it of it. I would NEVER be where I am now if I had not gone through that horrid and painful storm after returning home. He had to empty me so I could truly understand what it meant to be filled with Him. I am by no means saying I am without flaws or doubts, but in those moments, I’m given a picture of that very night that woman said – THIS IS JUST THE BEGINNING, and hope floods my body with an assurance that even in the battles and storms I face today – that He is still working in me and raising me up as His child. I would have NEVER thought that same girl would be called to a life of ministry. But he was and is still doing a work in my heart, a heart that longs for His will to be done in my life. And He is doing the same for you.
I don’t know if you’ve just started this journey of Grace by Faith…. I don’t know if you’re waiting on God to just give you a sign, I don’t know what’s going on in your heart or in your mind. But I know this – 
He works all things for the good of His people, and whatever rock bottom you find yourself at is the starting point for something amazing to happen through your relationship with Jesus Christ. Sometimes, probably more often than not – we ask Jesus in our hearts in the midst of our desperation. It is a powerful thing for a broken heart to invite Him in. He may allow you to stay there until it is finished, but my friend – he is there with you! Rejoice in that. Some of you need to just hear this! You need to know that He hasn’t left you, not once. My favorite verse comes from 2 Corinthians 4:8 and it talks about how even when we are perplexed and hard troubled – we are never forsaken. I hold into those words when I need to remember that even if I’m in the midst of a storm, He has not left my side. I encourage you to remember that. And embrace the work He is doing in you, for one day you will look back and understand it was all for your own good! 
Praying for you❤️

The First piece of Armor.

I am reading a book called “The Armor of God” By the actress Priscilla Shirer – who is also the lead actress in the Number 1 movie in the country “War Room”.

The book breaks down the passage in Ephesians about the Armor of God. It spends time explaining why each piece is important in the spiritual warfare unseen to the human eye, that we face everyday in our lives. It also states that there are not only six pieces of armor, but seven – Prayer. Prayer is the seventh weapon needed to overcome the attacks of the enemy on our lives and our families. She talks about each piece of armor, going into detail on how to engage each one in your daily life.

The first piece of armor, is the “belt of truth”. Let’s read the passage before I go any further and share what amazing insight I have gotten so far from this book study…

Ephesians 6:

12 For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this age,[c] against spiritual hosts of wickedness in the heavenly places. 13 Therefore take up the whole armor of God, that you may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand.

14 Stand therefore, having girded your waist with truth, having put on the breastplate of righteousness, 15 and having shod your feet with the preparation of the gospel of peace; 16 above all, taking the shield of faith with which you will be able to quench all the fiery darts of the wicked one. 17 And take the helmet of salvation, and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God; 18 praying always with all prayer and supplication in the Spirit, being watchful to this end with all perseverance and supplication for all the saints— 19 and for me, that utterance may be given to me, that I may open my mouth boldly to make known the mystery of the gospel, 20 for which I am an ambassador in chains; that in it I may speak boldly, as I ought to speak.

Every time I read this, I feel like a soldier, ready to fight the battle that many choose not to. It’s so empowering to know that we have been given clear instruction on how to defend ourselves when it comes to the spiritual battle that lets face it, we all deal with.

Priscilla wrote something in her book that really has been sitting in the back of my mind since I read it about a week ago. She says this:

“Remember, the enemy’s overarching device is deception. He shades reality with enticing and alluring colors, seducing us away from black-and-white principles. He propagates fantasies, causing temporal and insignificant things somehow appear immensely valuable and favorable. He hides consequences in the fine print while highlighting only the parts that appeal to our shortsighted, self-gratifying flesh. His packaging is so clever that unless we know whats true – I mean really know it, know it at our core – we easily prey into his ploys.” – Armor Of God by Priscilla Shirer.

When I read that, I thought, MMMH – that is why the say that then enemy does not come with a pitch fork and horns, like movies and books have made it out to be described. He comes as a plot SO CLOSE to God’s will for your life, that if you don’t live in the truth of God’s Word, you will not even see the difference!

That is why, it is the first piece of armor listed. That is why she says, it is described as the BELT OF TRUTH, because it is meant to protect your core. It is meant to give you standard to base your entire life around. It is meant to allow you to define your way of thinking and living on something that is unable to be changed. And Truth – is the light of God’s Word. Truth is something that is constant, never changes, and never will. That is why it is so important for us to Gird ourselves in the truth, or else we will not know when the enemy is attacking our lives, our minds, or our families.

So the first piece of armor to fight with is truth. Easy enough. I mean, some of us know what God’s Word says about specific things in our lives, but does that mean we live our lives based off of those things? I know I don’t always do that.

God’s Word tells me to pray about everything and worry about nothing. (Philippians 4:6) Even Jesus said do not worry about anything for God will provide (Matthew  6:25) That is truth. Yet I find myself worrying about many things daily.

God’s Word tells me that the tongue is a fire and has the power to defile so it must be controlled. (James 3:6) That is truth. Yet I don’t always think about the things I say before they come out of my mouth.

God’s Word tells me that tribulations produce perseverance, and perseverance – character, and character – hope. (Romans 5:3) That is truth. Yet I doubt many times when I am troubled.

God’s Word says that I am justified by grace through redemption that is in Christ (Romans 3:24) That is truth. Yet sometimes I put my works before my faith, trying to perform for the Kingdom instead of growing in my faith instead.

Truth is found in all of these scriptures, and countless more. But the enemy will try to tell you that worrying is Ok, that you must perform in order to be accepted by others and by God, and that the trials you face today are because God has no interest in giving you an opportunity to live a life full of joy.

See, it is so easy for us, ESPECIALLY in this culture, to bend the truth to fit in. We want others to accept us, or not alienate us, so we accept the lie as the truth, picking the parts of scripture that justify why we act the way we act, or do the things we do. We allow Satan to twist the truth so that we feel better about ourselves and our decisions. Instead of letting ourselves be convicted and diving into the Truth of what Scripture really says.

I have a vague example with out too much detail. I have friends that I have been close with for a very long time. Since I chose to live a different lifestyle, there has been distance put between us, physically and emotionally. But, when I am around them, or talking to them – I will conform to that atmosphere. I allow gossip to be engaged in the conversation, I opt to talk about worldly things, not sharing what is really on my heart because I feel as though they are not interested in talking about those things. Instead of being who I want to be, I show up as who I think THEY want me to be. And it has burdened me for a long time. Recently, I chose to stand on my convictions, and the Truth that I believe, and I was shut down. I was turned away and my friends chose their desires over letting me live my truth. And there was nothing I could do about it except stand firm on what I believe. Whatever the case may be, it opened my eyes to the fact that I compromise what I believe because I chose to entertain the lies of the enemy. It was never necessarily about my friends, but more about the battle that goes on inside of me, of whether or not I am ok with being isolated from people because of the standard of truth I am supposed to be living out, or if I am so comfortable to conform because that is what others want or even expect from me.

Priscilla Shirer states that in these moments, in the moments that our desires contradict what God’s Word says about our lives, that is when we are supposed to Gird ourselves with the belt of Truth.  And that leads into another very important point…

If we are going to be honest with ourselves (hense the word “truth”), we need to REALLY be honest with ourselves. We need to be honest with ourselves about where we are at. Not where we want to be, where we should be, or where we will be. But, where we are at this moment. That allows us to really examine our lives, and our actions we take  because of our outlook on our relationship with God and our position when it comes to spiritual warfare. It’s not enough to just know the truth of God, we need to know who we are in the midst of all of it.

For example, with the situation I mentioned about my friends – I KNOW that my weakness is allowing myself to conform in those types of situations. I know that I like to please others and that I care about what others think about me a little to much sometimes. Now what can I do with this truth? Well, I choose to not go visit very often because I know that if I was put in a situation where I was uncomfortable, instead of walking away or standing up and saying that I am uncomfortable, I would bite my tongue and camouflage my way through it, just to appease the majority. I mean, I don’t want to hurt anyone’s feelings, and I sure as hell don’t want to be the odd man out! But where does that get me? It gets me, days later, wallowing in self pity and regret.

The enemy is going to attack our weakness’s, because that is where we are our weakest. He is also going to attack our strengths, because that is where we are most useful to God. It is our responsibility to KNOW which is which, so that we cater to our prayer life, and also so that we can battle the lies with discernment of the truth.

If you think that you can just walk through life winging it, and not knowing who you truly are (Which buy the way includes knowing and accepting your strengths and weakness’s) then you are a prime target for Satan to infiltrate your battle ground’s, including your mind. Knowing who you are in Christ IS FOUND in God’s Word, it is found in the TRUTH of God’s Word.

So, when Paul says to “Gird your waist with truth” it opts us into seeking truth from God first. Knowing what His promises are, for you and for your life. It means understanding yourself as well, and being honest about your weaknesses and strengths, and allowing God to move in those places of your life. It means, at your CORE (i.e. YOUR WAIST) to stand firm with the light of the scripture, even if it means having to make changes to your social life, or your way of thinking. It means, allowing the truth to transform you so that you can engage in battle with confidence.

This is just one part of the FULL ARMOR OF GOD. But it is the first part, and the part that starts from a spiritual level. Living in truth is not meant to be a piece of cake, it’s meant to be a piece of protection for your life and for the spiritual battle that you are facing on a daily basis. It is what will support your salvation because you will know that even if Satan whispers lies to you through whatever means he can, you will combat him with the knowledge of the truth of God. And that my friends, is imperative to a victory in the eyes of Christ.

It Almost my Birthday 

I told myself when I as 21 that when I turned 23 I’d re assess where I was and make changes so that by the time I was 25, I’d have “my stuff in order” so to speak. I did that, moved and changed ALOT of things, I mean, a lot! Maybe didn’t end up exactly where I though but I’m sure not where I once was to be honest. I find myself wondering how I still have a month and a half left until I turn 25, and wondering about what I want to change now that I’ve grown since two years ago. Also about all the changes that have come to pass in the last two years living in this city. Now I wonder, whats next? Who do I want to be? Not who does everyone else want me to be. What do I have to do to make my dreams real? And what do I need to do always follow my purpose? I guess since 21 i am really not who I once was and the question is who do I want to be moving forward? Who do you want to be as you grow in age and in life. And how can we use what we have been gifted with to make an impact in others lives – and truly be living our purpose.. Next thing I know I’ll be in my 30’s! and I can’t even wonder where I will be then. As long as I am with good spirit change will be accepted with an open heart always. And change is good – especially when it involves growth in any way ❤️ *Glass raised* To always being open to the lesson in all change, and the love in all others 
Side note- I can’t believe I am half way through my 20’s 😳😩

How the fear of rejection can stop us from believing in our Worth.

The fear of rejection can do a lot to someone. It makes you feel responsible for other’s opinions of you, because their opinions of you hold truth to your value. You could go mad from the fears of being rejected!  You could end up performing all the time for others, hoping they will give you approval for what you’ve done. You can end up manipulating someone, praising them so that they will not reject you. You could even end up judging others and keeping them at a distance in order to not let rejection meet you where you are.

Whatever the case, this fear is powerful enough to keep us enslaved to an idea of a promise. A promise that everyone must and will accept you, and if they don’t, you are worth less, or worse – nothing! There are so many reasons that this fear could be in us, and dictating our relationships in our lives. The problem is, it does more harm than good.

If you harbor fears of being rejected, from your parents, your partner, your friends, employers, or such – shouldn’t we ask ourselves why? Why does it matter of this person has rejected me or not? How does this even relate to how I view myself? Where does this fear come from and why do I feel this way towards that person?

Maybe it does begin with your parents, always fearing that they will never accept your career choice, or your significant other. Maybe they think you should call them more often, our hang out with different friends. That fear of rejection could cause you to lie, or harbor anger, or make choices that you do not want to make for yourself. It could also be the same with friends, not wanting to be rejected by friends, maybe you have found yourself always saying yes – to favors, outings, or chipping in when you know you don’t have the money. Or even with your significant other, which can come in many forms. From personal experience, because of my fear of rejection, I was not always vocal about things that bothered me in my relationship, so I stayed quiet. It ended up doing more harm than good, because of that fear.

There are so many reasons why we can have this fear of rejection stored in us. Everyone wants to be accepted, everyone wants to connect. As Children of the same God, we were meant to fellowship with one another and find acceptance within our similarities. But we are human, and the enemy has posed this lie that sounds truthful, but does not lead to any truth I know! That lie is that our self-worth is based off of our performance and the opinions of others. It doesn’t matter if it is not true, the ego will easily believe the equation, and that is where the fear will arise. And how many deals with the fears of rejection is believing they can control the answer to the equation given. Which is irrelevant since it is not the truth.

If we were to base our self-worth on our performance, our self-worth would be a variable of life. Your job, your car, your home, the money in your bank account – does NOT, I repeat, does NOT dictate your self-worth. Whether you have a job that you wake up @ 6 AM, or you are a stay at home mother – that does not define your worth as a person. And if we were to base our self-worth on the opinions of others, we would be experiencing someone else’s idea of who we truly are inside. And that is impossible. Most of the time, what others see when they look at you is a reflection of themselves, so for anybody’s worth to be based on someone’s opinion about you – it should be that “someone’s” worth. We cannot control what others think about us, and to dictate your life around that because of your fear of rejection – You will be disappointed with the outcome.

Self-worth should not be defined by the fact that someone rejects you, so why fear it? Jesus said “And you will be hated by all for My name’s sake. But he who endures to the end shall be saved” (Mark 13:13). So who are we to say that Jesus worth was in those who persecuted him?

How are we to stand up for what we believe in, if we fear rejection? How are we sharing the story of our truth, THE truth, with anyone, if we are scared that they “will not like us”. We can’t let the fear of what others think – allow us to believe our worth is less? Our worth is priceless, because of who we are. We are the children of the God who formed us in our mother’s womb. We are the vessels that hold the Spirit of the living God. We are the creation of the great Creator. And yet, we fear that those who do not understand will change those facts, those truths by a simple opinion.

So what do we do when we find ourselves fearing the fact that others may not accept us the way we want to be accepted? How do we handle knowing that just because “they” don’t love us, that we are “unlovable”, how do we get passed that staggering disappointment that we all fear our parents will harbor towards us for the rest of our adult lives?

Well to be honest, I think that it starts with remembering what you are capable of as YOU. What is your purpose here? And what is your plan? Does it really matter if everyone agrees or accepts it? If you can accept yourself, and forgive yourself for not being honest about how much you care what others think – and how much you might have even strained yourself – physically and emotional to try and prove something to the world.. THEN you will be OK with rejection when it serves itself up to you. The only person you should be worried about being better than is the you of yesterday. Sometimes, in order to follow your dreams and aspirations, your ideas, your truth – you have to stand alone, without that person you found yourself trying to avoid being rejected by.

The fear of rejection holds not truth. So when we find ourselves living outside of our authenticity, when we see ourselves trying to manipulate, control, and hide from certain situations within our relationships with others who’s opinion matters to us, just remember, that no matter what the circumstance, your worth lies in something much greater than the opinion or acceptance of another person, and that if rejection may come along – that is the perfect time to remember that very truth – your worth lies in the Glory of the God of the Universe! And there is nothing that can change that. Once we understand that, we can understand that the fear of rejection is a bottomless fear that will keep us from showing authenticity and real love to others.

And we have known and believed the love that God has for us. God is love, and he who abides in love abides in God, and God in him. (1 Jhon 4:16)