Spiritual Warfare

Last year I ended up in a Bible study at a neighbor’s church on the book of Acts. I didn’t think I could make room in my schedule to participate but I did feel like God was nudging me to go.  Althought it wasn’t easy, I did everything in my power to try to show up each week.  It took place during a time I felt as if God was trying to move and change things in my life.   Not only was He working on me, He was also working on my husband.  There was a lot of anticipation in my heart about what God was up to so I was trying to keep myself open.

The hard part about this is when God is preparing you to surrender and answer His call the enemy is on high alert to stop you in your tracks. When you are most in tune with God and His plans for you, you are also slightly vulnerable.

For me, it feels like a cross between floating and an anxiety attack.  There is freedom and beauty in the sudden urge to surrender to God in a new way but there are also daggers of fear and doubt that begin to attack my mind.  The imperfect human part of me tries to control everything and whispers that surrender is not logical.

During these beckoning moments of being completely captivated by God we must recognize the enemy is working overtime to pull us out of this supernatural experience.

It is during these times we must be bold about falling to our knees and praying with all of our hearts and all of our minds to let the power of God direct us and keep us on the correct path in His light.  Read More

Winter

I’m struggling with you right now winter.  The enemy is trying to take me down and make me sad during these gray, cold days, but I’m not going down without a fight.  The enemy might try to invade my mind with anxiety, sadness and self doubt, but he will never get my heart.

My heart belongs to Jesus Christ, my God, my Savior.

At the very moment I felt myself starting to go down yesterday, a neighbor showed up and forced me out of my house for coffee.  She also struggles with depression and anxiety in her life.  She is one of those friends I know will not judge me or view me as weak. We connected through our kids and started praying together a few years ago.   This is the way Jesus works to help us.  If we keep our eyes on Him, He will put people in our lives to help us fight our battles and better see His amazing glory. There are no coincidences.

We prayed together in my car outside of Starbucks for Him to take control.  We demanded the enemy to leave and have no power over our lives.  Together we battled back through prayer. Depression and anxiety would not define us.  We are defined and made whole by the love of our Savior.

“Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.”– Philippians 4:6-7

“So do not fear, for I am with you; do not be dismayed, for I am your God.  I will strengthen you and help you; I will uphold you with my righteous right hand.” – Isaiah 41:10


One week later…..I am reading back on this and thanking sweet Jesus because He showed me His power and glory by getting me through that horrible day and returning me to a place of security and confidence.  The enemy wants us to think the solution to our problems could never be as simple as reaching out to Jesus.  When you are in a dark moment you may not believe that praying to Jesus and asking Him to take full control over your life could actually be the solution.  For me, surrendering to Jesus and trusting him to show me the way out of whatever difficulty I am facing has proven over and over again to be the path back to peace.

I tell my kids if they are having a hard time, are scared or are facing a tough moment to say the name of Jesus out loud.  “Jesus, Jesus, Jesus.”  It sounds so basic, but I want them to learn early on the concept of turning to God to handle life’s difficult days. There is so much power in the name of Jesus.

Thank you God for surrounding us with the power of your perfect love.  You are life, breath, love, comfort, living water and peace.  In all of your glory and mysterious wonder you guide us and protect us during times of need.  I love you God and am forever grateful to be loved by you unconditionally through all my broken and imperfect ways. Amen.

I pray that from his glorious, unlimited resources he will empower you with inner strength through his Spirit. 17 Then Christ will make his home in your hearts as you trust in him. Your roots will grow down into God’s love and keep you strong. 18 And may you have the power to understand, as all God’s people should, how wide, how long, how high, and how deep his love is. 19 May you experience the love of Christ, though it is too great to understand fully. Then you will be made complete with all the fullness of life and power that comes from God.

20 Now all glory to God, who is able, through his mighty power at work within us, to accomplish infinitely more than we might ask or think.21 Glory to him in the church and in Christ Jesus through all generations forever and ever! Amen. -Ephesians 3:16-21

Prayer for Today

God, You are so good.

I cry for You.

Because You complete me.

And I am not sure

How to be in the world.

As your daughter

Weeping for You

As my day moves forward

Your depth

Takes over my soul.

This is what I want

For You

To be in me

Directing my life

But still

I’m not sure

How to fit in this world

As your child

Overcome by you

My God

Jesus

Show me

How to be in this world

When You

Are my every thought.

How I love You.

Thank you God.

In the name of Jesus I pray

Amen.

Distracted

Tonight at church I saw this young man sitting next to my husband who was probably in his early 20’s completely rocking out during worship and singing his heart out for Jesus. It was so inspiring to see his total surrender and I could just feel his love for God.  It was contagious. I could tell he was on fire for Jesus and just standing near him brought me closer to the Holy Spirit.  I needed that moment in church to draw me back in to the most important relationship in my life- my relationship with God.  As hard as it is for me to admit it, my relationship with God takes discipline, purposeful dedication and work.  I am far too easily distracted and pulled away from Him and I must constantly struggle to pull myself back into Him.

It is so beautiful to see the way God works in people’s lives to grow His kingdom and draw us closer to Him.  It is a constant reminder that our time in this world is truly intended to be about bringing people to know His love. To know that our imperfections, sins and faulty human ways are forgiven if we accept God’s perfect son Jesus as our Savior.  We should be obediently living out this purpose in our lives every day. Living out our faith.  Teaching, sharing, reaching out and showing love to people in the name of Jesus Christ, our Savior. His love is so much greater than you or me or any current circumstance or situation.  God’s love for us is so far beyond anything we can fully comprehend and He gives each of us a very specific role in growing His kingdom and sharing the pure joy of His unconditional love during our time here on earth. Read More

Trust

I am here now God, to spend time with you.  You are so good and I love you.

Summer has stolen my time with you.  I have allowed myself to become overwhelmed by my children and the unending busy work that consumes my day.  I hear the news of the world in the background. It stings my heart and robs me of my energy.  Fear creeps in.  I have drifted from you and it is evident in my anxious, irritable thoughts and self-pity.

There is no excuse for not prioritizing you and making time for you God.  It is disobedient.  For this I repent.

You are reminding me now that my days would flow more easily if I remembered to stop and spend time with you.  Even in the abundant mundane moments of life in this season I would see your path more clearly if I stopped to hear your words. Read More

Mind Battles

 

Do you fight mental illness, anxiety or depression in your life?  I think at some point most of us do; however, there are certain people who are more prone to it and suffer more severely.  The hard thing is it is often considered a weakness so many people end up suffering in silence.

Unfortunately it has plagued many in my family, so when I feel it creeping into my own mind I react with a vengeance.  Through prayer, my faith in God, awareness, therapy, journal writing and a lot of running I have learned to fight it off.  I can feel it coming on and I stop it in its tracks before it can grab on.  There is no way I will allow myself to turn inward and be overcome by the power of the darkness.  Even when it feels impossible and uncomfortable I keep reaching out to God and to others in the outside world- grasping at bits of life to bring me back into the light.  Sometimes I must write out and define my exact battle strategy.  Read More

Hear Now

Hear now what He says to you,

God is so good.

Don’t be afraid to let the words

Sink into your soul.

He knows what you can do,

He does not have doubts,

Nor should you.

Listen.

It is your voice and your actions

He wants to hear and see.

He has so much confidence in us.

I feel like He is telling us:

Do this!

You are worthy,

I love you,

And I will not let you fall.

Lean on me completely and you will see.

I will stay with you

And help you live out

My purpose for you.

Lean on me, don’t be afraid.

You have been quiet for too long.

Trust in me and you will see.

You will not fall.

My love for you is perfect.

There are no conditions.

Trust.

I will always catch you.

Trust.

God is so good to us. No one could possibly love us more.  I am so thankful for His unfailing love even when I don’t feel worthy.

 

 

Crazy is Not Crazy

My youngest child is five years old and will be starting kindergarten this August.  I have a small side job working for a real estate agent but I am basically a stay at home mom.  Prior to becoming a stay at home mom I had a stressful career in the insurance industry.  There are several open doors for me to go back into the insurance world but I do not plan on it.  I went to college.  I had a good job and made decent money.  Naturally people are curious if I will be going back to work when my youngest starts elementary school. It almost pains me when they ask, “so what are you going to do with all your time now that your baby is starting school?”

I don’t mean to be offended when people ask this, but it’s hard not to be.  Taking care of my household and three little boys is not easy!  There is not a lot of rest in my life.  The work does not suddenly end when my youngest starts kindergarten.  My husband has a demanding corporate job so I take on a lot of the home and child rearing responsibilities.   When we were both working full time with two kids under the age of two our marriage suffered and we almost did not make it.  I clearly remember the day I turned to God in tears begging for a solution to the problems in my marriage and the unhappiness I was feeling trying to “do it all.”  We were a mess and I never want to go back to that desperate place. Read More

Not Good Enough

 

Not good enough, not good enough, not good enough.  I hate these words.  They seize my mind, rip at my heart and bring me to my knees.  It has been this way for as long as I can remember. These words haunted me even as a young child.  I pray to God–make it stop, make it stop, make it stop.  The enemy knows this is his best route to sneak into my life.  He knows how hard it is for me to say “GO AWAY” and believe that I am in control. He knows he has been successful so many times at stopping me dead in my tracks.  The enemy knows all too well how to paralyze me with self-doubt and send me back into complacency. Read More

He Will Never Leave Us

So much beauty can be found in some of the dark moments of our lives.  One of my dearest friends texted me these words of encouragement today:

“God goes before you.  He is with you, and He will never leave you.  Believe his promises!”

It seems as if God puts the perfect people, words, songs and experiences into my path right when I need them most.  He floods my heart with an overflowing love and an unending capacity to reflect on the greatness of His presence.   He is so all encompassing there is no possible way I could ever have enough of Him. I have surrendered to the power of His love and He will direct my life. My humanly, earthly powers and thoughts could never be enough to unravel me from the chains of hurt and despair in this world. Only God can do this. Read More