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Don’t Let The Wind Sway You

Yesterday I was in a meeting with my assistant, catching up on life and working through many details, adding to our lists of things-to-do. As we were talking, we both expressed at different times that we felt there were not enough hours in the day for us to meet our commitments without burning out. After our meeting, as I was driving home, I started to think about how the stresses in our lives had become things we were focusing and fixated on. Checking off the to-do lists, meeting commitments and working 27 hours in a 24-hour day seemed to trump time with the Lord.

Matthew 14:22-32 says, “22 Immediately Jesus made the disciples get into the boat and go on ahead of Him to the other side, while He dismissed the crowd. 23 After He had dismissed them, He went up on a mountainside by Himself to pray. Later that night, He was there alone, 24 and the boat was already a considerable distance from land, buffeted by the waves because the wind was against it.25 Shortly before dawn Jesus went out to them, walking on the lake. 26 When the disciples saw Him walking on the lake, they were terrified. ‘It’s a ghost,’ they said, and cried out in fear.27 But Jesus immediately said to them: ‘Take courage! It is I. Do not be afraid.’28 ‘Lord, if it’s you,’ Peter replied, ‘tell me to come to you on the water.’29 ‘Come,’ He said. Then Peter got down out of the boat, walked on the water and came toward Jesus. 30 But when he saw the wind, he was afraid and, beginning to sink, cried out, ‘Lord, save me!’31 

Here we see that Peter asks to walk to Jesus on the water and yet, after walking towards him he begins to sink. Why did Peter begin to sink? Peter was so fixated on Jesus at first that he was able to walk towards Jesus on the water. Then, the Bible says that, “When he saw the wind, he was afraid and began to sink.”

Sometimes I feel like Peter in the midst of the craziness of life.

I have every intention each day to wake up and be completely fixated on the Lord but sometimes my to-do lists become distractions and my focus is transferred to something else other than Jesus. When Peter lost focus of Jesus he began to sink. Peter started doubting and lost faith. Sometimes in life, we get so focused on the things around us that we don’t even realize we are sinking and sometimes we forget that Jesus can help us through everything and that we need to have faith so we can focus on Him for guidance.

Matthew 14: 30-31 goes on to say, “30 But when he saw the wind, he was afraid and, beginning to sink, cried out, ‘Lord, save me!’31 Immediately Jesus reached out His hand and caught him. ‘You of little faith,’ He said, ‘why did you doubt?32 And when they climbed into the boat, the wind died down.”

Immediately after Peter began sinking Jesus reached out his hand and saved him. Whenever Jesus finds us sinking, He will reach out to us. It is our decision if we reach back. If I go about my crazy days and focus on the distractions I will sink. Spending time with Jesus and placing my faith in Him should be the number one priority of each day. Something I love about our Savior is that if ever there is a time we are sinking, He will reach out and save us.

One of my favorite worship songs, Hold Onto Me, by Elevation Church Worship says:

“Hold on to me, I am weak without you. I can’t breathe without you. But I can make it through when you hold onto me. When my life is broken. Still your arms are open. Your love can make me new.”

Despite the stresses in our lives, holding onto Jesus and focusing on Him before anything else will help us get through our to-do lists and busy schedules. We can’t do anything on our own but we can do everything with Jesus.

Where in your life have to chosen to direct your attention? Is it constantly on Jesus or are you distracted with other things? Maybe it’s time to reach back to Jesus and place your faith in Him so He can save you from sinking. Our Savior will always have open arms and will always accept you back. Continue holding onto to Jesus and remember that He should forever be your number one focus.

-Abigail Trent

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I shall not be rendered ineffective!

I won’t be ineffective; I can’t and I won’t be rendered ineffective… 

I don’t want to miss out on blessings or God given opportunities because I was “too lazy” to exercise my faith, trust, and boldness spiritual muscles, only to be labeled a lazy Christian because I CHOSE ‘Easy Rd.’. I don’t have to be strapped down and held back by labels or tags against me.

The ONLY name I wish to possess is: DAUGHTER OF THE MOST HIGH KING!!

But – I know I am only human; I will stumble so I just pray His grace will abound.

“But I have this against you: you have abandoned the love you had at first. Remember then how far you have fallen, repent, and do the works you did at first. Otherwise, I will come to you and remove your lampstand from its place…” (Rev. 2:4-5, HCSB) “So because you are lukewarm and neither hot nor cold, I am going to vomit you out of my mouth.” (Rev. 3:16, HCSB)

In case you’re in shock too, these verses ARE IN THE BIBLE so please so kindly lift your lip off the ground and listen up: I’ve read these and heard these verses before and I would think, “WOW Lord! How stinking harsh. I’m totally confused: didn’t you say you would fulfill your purpose in me (Psalm 138:8, HCSB)? Didn’t you say you had all these great plans for me to do even greater things in your name Lord (John 14:12, ESV)? So what’s with all the harsh antics?” I know sometimes I lean more on the idea of being inactive because of “dry spells” or “self-induced inactivity comas” because of complacency. How can I fight against that and make my wandering heart stay steady and attuned to God, His heart, and plans for me?

Dry spells in my faith are the most painful. See, this thing called complacency isn’t a place or a word that should be in the life of believers – EVER; but sometimes it happens. To be completely vulnerable and honest, I ALLOW it to happen. I know I shouldn’t grow stagnant or still and I shouldn’t allow these dry spells to creep up on me. I’ve heard a new term recently by my pastor (shout out to Community Church of Chesapeake, VA) that could most likely label me well when a dry spell ensues; his word was – ‘staytheist’. Weird isn’t it?! It’s like he fused “stay” and “atheist” together; it is strange but I promise it fits in what I am going to say, so keep in step my friend. A ‘staytheist’ is someone who stays where they are in their faith for fear of what’s next, the unknown, or afraid of possible steps needed to take to walk through necessary doors into a God sized opportunity. To me, a ‘staytheist’ is a doubter, disbeliever, and person gripped and crippled by fear.

I can be a stayeist who doubts, disbelieves, and fears the unknown future or what’s next to see my own God sized doors of opportunity. When this fear, disbelief, and doubt occur, I induce a dry spell; but what gets me out – what breaks up and humbles me, is HIS GRACE! The scales of disbelief fall, my heart of doubt breaks, and my once fear-filled voice returns in gusto, full of life while my self-induced chains of bondage to my spot of staytheism, becomes a place of upheaved rubble in the presence of the Almighty. The very person who could have calmed me and soothed me into peace; I had distance myself. Somehow, I expected that by my very human claim to stay put, would satisfy my momentary state of doubt, disbelief  and fear and could be a match for the tidal wave of unfailing love, grace, and mercy that I needed from my Abba! Through my running, I am still pursued by a mighty warrior – yes, He disciplines me accordingly– but lovingly sets me back on the path of the calling He fashioned for me. It is through His perfect love that all my doubts, disbeliefs, and fears are driven out and put to shame (1 John 4:18, HCSB).

So to all my Complacent Christians or Staytheists out there: Arise sons and daughters! Drop those hole-filled shoes! Cease your striving and turn to grace; allow it to shower you with the love for which you’re desperately searching, feel the acceptance you’ve always wanted, and embrace HIS GRACE. For if we wish to be effective vessels for the Kingdom, we must always thirst for His righteousness (Matthew 5:6, ESV), pursue the things of His heart (Philippians 4:8-9, HCSB), and be steadfast as to be worthy of our callings (Colossians 1:10, HCSB) and worthy of carrying the Gospel (Philippians 1:27, HCSB). It is by His grace you have been saved (Ephesians 2:8-9, ESV) and by Him and His grace, my dear friends, we are sustained (Isaiah 46:4, NIV). His grace clears the stains of our sin, doubt, shame, disbelief, and fear, to tattoo – inscribe on us a high calling; His grace shows us our purpose (Ephesians 2:10, HCSB) and keeps us on our journey. The peace of walking in His grace is obtained by a life fully surrendered to Christ through the receiving of salvation by His atoning blood on the Cross. By entering into this relationship with our Abba Father, we have everything we need to live.

Complacent living and staytheism can seep in, but even if, His grace abounds all the more!

-Vickee

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God’s Plan > My Plan

 Great things never came out of comfort zones. 

This is a quote that I have heard repeatedly within the last couple years, and for some reason, it has really stuck with me. I have been crawling my way out of my many comfort zones for the last several years and to be honest, it is downright scary sometimes. There is a passage within the book of Isaiah that I have always clung to and it is in chapter 41:10-13.

            “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. All who rage against you will surely be ashamed and disgraced; those who oppose you will be as nothing and perish. Though you search for your enemies, you will not find them. Those who wage war against you will be as nothing at all. For I am the Lord your God who takes hold of your right hand and says to you, Do not fear; I will help you.

            I have clung to this passage for several years because of the peace that it has brought when worry, doubt, anxiety, and fear have consumed me in various circumstances. I have recently graduated college, but I can recall my sophomore year so clearly. Having already changed my major twice by the fall semester, I was beginning to feel the pressure of getting my life together. People always tell you college is the best years of your life, but at that point I was beginning to wonder what the heck I was doing. So as I sat in my education major classes and felt absolutely no passion for the work I was doing, I knew I needed to change my major (yet again). I felt like I was going through a quarter life crisis–people have those right? I began combing the degree completion plans to see if anything really fit me. I dreaded to tell my parents because after all, they were paying for me to get a degree in something. I didnt want them to think I was wasting their hard earned dollars. I began to pray, and pray, and pray. I begged for answers because I honestly just wanted to know the direction the Lord wanted me to go.

            It was uncomfortable. The not knowing what I was doing and the struggle of wondering whether I should stick it out haunted me. Throughout the process of praying and waiting on the Lord for the next step, I realized that the only reason I truly wanted to teach was because I thought there was security in it. I thought that at least when I would graduate I would know exactly what job I was looking for. Crawling out of this comfort zone was difficult. I had to let go of my idea of job security and embrace the Lords right hand in this season of my life and allow him to show me the path He wanted for me, not the one I was trying to force.

            From a young age, I had loved art. I enjoyed arts and crafts at camp and I liked doodling and drawing. While I never took many art classes in school I took one in high my senior year and loved it. I never considered a degree in the arts because I did not think one could make a decent living out of it. Looking back now, I see how foolish I was to put God in a box. I stepped out of the comfort zone of the major I felt was correct and into the unknown major of Graphic Design. My family was a little skeptical at first, especially since this was my third major. I cant say I blamed them, but I felt the Lords presence over the whole circumstance. It was scary to step into a brand new degree plan and start all over. It was scary to step into something that I felt no real security in. That being said, it was comforting to know I had stepped into something that I felt the Lords hand all over. Just as the Lord says in end of that passage, Do not fear; I will help you He helped me in the same way.

            That was two years ago. I had never used a Mac computer, and didnt even know how to turn it on in my first class. I had no idea about photography, or hand lettering, or what the Adobe programs were. All I knew was that the Lord had put me in this degree program and wanted me there. Now as a recent college graduate with a degree in Graphic Design and job that uses those skills I am grateful. I am grateful for the Lords provision. I am grateful for his prodding to step out of a comfort zone and into the unknown because it didnt just change my degree path, it change my life.

 

-Molly Hitch

 

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Giving God Control

What’s Love Got to Do:

Everything.

I never realized how warped my view of God’s love was until last week. I thought I was over that “stage.” That stage of learning that God’s love is always good, trustworthy, perfect, patient, kind and not insisting on its own way. I thought I’d been challenged in understanding that God’s love was different than my love, or the love of ex-boyfriends, parents, step-dads, and friends. No matter how good or bad, it is not God’s love.

Being able to image Christ’s love is a privilege; it’s an honor. But we can hardly fathom God’s love completely, let alone show it perfectly, which can make things complicated for some of us.

I’m currently reading through William P. Young’s The Shack (such a good read for anyone who has dealt with grief that has challenged their perspective … of anything, but especially of God. And with all of the tragedy happening lately, I’m sure it’s not a stretch for many of us). But, in light of this, one quote has really stuck out to me – “Paradigms power perception and perceptions power emotions.”

In other words, what we believe deep down helps us to form what we think to be true about a given situation. And while emotions can be a beautiful gift, adding color and depth to life, they can also make things dark and bleak very quickly.

I’ve been reminded recently how easy it is to believe one thing to be true … because I want it to be true. Because all of my experiences have told me that it must be true the way that I see it.

I saw things, I saw people, and I saw God one way, and I wouldn’t let God show me otherwise.

I have had times of being mad at God for not stepping in and saving me from making choices I regret. I’ve been mad that He didn’t step in before Eve took a bite of that apple and handed it to Adam. I’ve been mad that He has loved His Creation enough to give it, to give us, the very independence we ask for. I was mad because surely I would never have asked for such a thing…

Can you say arrogance? Don’t worry; I’ll say it for you (talking about myself of course).

I stepped into the role of judge. I judged The Judge. That’s a pretty horrific realization. But we are pretty fickle and fragile as humans. We can be so lost in our own perception of reality or so sure of our own judgments and it only takes the briefest moment, the quickest sight, or one word to alter our perception for much longer than the circumstance itself – as does stepping away from the Truth itself.

If we are not careful to be on guard, what we hear and see can manifest itself in our heart and mind.

Watch over your heart with all diligence, for from it flow the springs of life. – Proverbs 4:23

My heart has not always been watched over very well; sometimes we can’t help what happens to us, but for me, I know I have not watched over my own very well, either. My view of love has been distorted because of the love I’ve seen and the love I’ve chosen.

People always leave, so God must too, right? Can’t trust people, must be a reflection of God!

WRONG. So, so, wrong, dear sister! Just because we believe something firmly doesn’t make it true.

“Be willing to re-examine what you believe. The more you live in the truth, the more your emotions will help you see clearly. But even then, you don’t want to trust them more than Me.” – The Shack

God is so gracious to us, He even gives us an example of this in Acts 10. In verses 10-16, Peter, a Jew, followed the Law of Moses and did not eat any animal that was “unclean.” Then the Lord gave Peter a vision:

And Peter became hungry and wanted something to eat, but while they were preparing it, he fell into a trance and saw the heavens opened and something like a great sheet descending, being let down by its four corners upon the earth.  In it were all kinds of animals and reptiles and birds of the air.  And there came a voice to him: “Rise, Peter; kill and eat.” But Peter said, “By no means, Lord; for I have never eaten anything that is common or unclean.” And the voice came to him again a second time, “What God has made clean, do not call common.” This happened three times, and the thing was taken up at once to heaven.”

Peter was so adamant about what he believed that he would not even hear from THE LORD. The Lord had to call him out on this not once, not twice, but THREE times!

We’re human. We are not immune to having deep rooted, passionate beliefs, but let us lean in and listen when He’s talking. He is a gracious God; He may even repeat it a fourth time for you.

And about those things that we could not control that may have happened to us – the good news? God is in the business of restoring and redeeming what sin destroys. But for the freedom we do have – let’s protect the hearts He’s given us and let our Jesus shape our world; don’t let the world shape our Jesus.

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God Will Be Your Strength

Are you fully aware that your body is completely and utterly breakable? So many things that keep you breathing and alive depend on your body and sometimes it can fail. Maybe this is a little known fact, but there is an enzyme that your pancreas produces in order to break down your food to fuel your body so it can do the things it’s supposed to do. But what happens when that enzyme just suddenly disappears? What happens when you’re given a diagnoses that forces you to come to terms that your body has failed you?! “My flesh and my heart may fail….”

There are many things that fail you like friendships or even your body, but the One who formed your body; the One who breathed you to exist never will. I have had to come to terms the past few years with my shortcomings, being diabetic is one, but the steadiness of my Father’s faithfulness has kept me in His perfect peace. He has had to carry me through bouts of depression after being diagnosed and the frustration living with this illness had brought me but he always seems to bring me back to this verse: “My flesh and my heart may fail…” but He doesn’t stop there, the hope is coming…”but God is the strength of my heart and my portion forever.”(Psalm 73:21) I don’t have to waste my thoughts on wishing away this failure, I can rest in knowing that even though I feel like I’m not good enough He is my strength.

I still may not understand the why of this situation but I can stand in His strength and rest. My body may fail me but my God never will. Sister, I don’t know what you’re going through or what you’re facing but just know that no matter what, lean on Christ; He’s all the strength you’ll ever need.

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God Told Me No

Recently, a huge opportunity came up for me in life. It was going to be a game changer and, in my eyes, fix a lot of my problems. I was nervous to see what this major change would bring, but was excited to see the possibilities and benefits that would come from it.

A couple weeks had gone by and I was extremely close to it coming true. I had a big meeting with whom the opportunity was involved with. As I was waiting for the meeting to start I prayed this prayer to the Lord:

               “God, I know this is a huge opportunity. I know that in my temporal mind this seems like a perfect plan and such an exciting thing. With that Lord, I pray that you only give me this if it is in your plan for me. God, I only want this if You want this for me. Please be so clear that I know without a shadow of a doubt this is the direction You want me to take. Show me Your will God! My heart is yearning for You to show me. Amen.”

Some time had passed and everything was lining up. My mindset, my planning, and my schedule were all in preparation for this opportunity. To spare you the time, some crazy, unheard thing took place which made no sense to the people who were praying for me.

I had gotten my answer from the Lord and He told me a clear “NO”.

The circumstances made no sense. I called one of the team members from The Blush Network staff and he said, “Well, isn’t that what you prayed for? You told God to make it clear to you if He wants you to pursue something else.” I was disappointed, but knew from so many circumstances in my life God has something else for me.

Now… Am I saying that when you receive a hard answer or news to just suck it up and put on a smile? Absolutely not. You WILL be disappointed and it will take you a minute to refocus your thoughts.

Here are a couple things that I suggest you to write down or remember when you are in that spot:

1. Be expectant.

  • When God says “no” to something that means He has a “yes” to something else. Therefore, when you receive a “no”, be waiting for a “yes” and expect it SOON! If you are praying for it, the Lord hears you and He answers!! The Promised Land is right around the corner. “In the day when I cried out, You answered me and made me bold with strength in my soul.” Psalm 138:3

2. A “No” is not punishment but rather redirection from the Lord.

  • If you get a “no” from God, we can actually be thankful that we are in His will and He is directing our lives. By God redirecting us, He is stepping in and taking hold of the situation. In the moment it will feel confusing or you may feel worried, but that is the exact time when we can hold onto what God has promised us.

3. Be aware of your mind

  • This is something I constantly have to make sure is in check! When in a time of transition, in a season of change, or when waiting for an answer from the Lord we need to hold onto the thought of what the Lord says about us. Our thoughts are where the temptation to take things into our own hands and to distrust what God is doing come from. The #1 way to keep your thoughts in check is to always spend ample time with the Lord, especially if you are seeking Him for answers. If your mind is spinning and you are feeling overwhelmed, prayer and God’s word will be your best remedies. “When my heart is overwhelmed, lead me to the rock that is higher than I”- Psalm 61:2

In this particular story, God told me “no.” But He is making His redirection and purpose for it clear. Jesus is absolutely everything. If you are seeking Him, I know He will do the same for you, sweet reader.

 

-Katie Dewan

 

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Victims Become Conquerors

When victims find their voice, they release healing to others who are still being held hostage by sins that where committed against them.

There is power in your testimony. There is a release that occurs when we share how God has come into our lives & healed the darkest & deepest pains.

We can release healing when we share the love of God with others; victims become conquerors when they find their voice.

We, as women, need to rise up and empower each other.

Empowerment means to give power of authority to; authorize, especially by legal or official means.

Through the death & resurrection of Christ, God has given us the power and authority over those things that have hurt us.

In order for us to go from victim to conqueror we must be courageous.  We need to dig deep inside of ourselves and find that courage we once had to get past the sin that was committed against us.   When I was a child & I was being molested it took courage for me to look others in the face as if I wasn’t carrying around this huge burden of guilt, shame & fear. It was then that courage was built into my DNA.

In Deuteronomy 31:6 Moses is speaking to the children of Israel, he is worried that once he leaves they will leave God.  He gathers them together to give them words of encouragement / words of empowerment.

“Be strong & Courageous. Don’t tremble! Don’t be afraid of them. The Lord your God is the one who is going with you. He won’t abandon you or leave you” [Deuteronomy. 31:6]

When God raises up those He wants to carry on his work (you & me) He ensures their success.  How do you know you have been called?  You did not fall victim to your circumstances, therefore you have been raised up to carry on His work.

While the children of Israel had the power of God fighting for them, they had no reason to fear all the power against them.  They found their strength in God. They were no longer victims but became conquerors.

We must trust God that He will give us everything we need to be courageous.  We must encourage and support each other to not give up, to fight the good fight for our freedom and to break the chains and bondages of our past.

1 Corinthians 15:58: “Therefore, my dear brothers and sisters STAND FIRM. Let nothing move you.”

Courage is something every Christian possesses. For we have no reason to be fearful for we have an everlasting God and we will live with Him for eternity.  We must however, ask God to equip us so that we can be ready for anything that comes our way.

I believe one of the most courageous things we can do as Christians is to look into the eyes of those who have offended us, hurt us and or committed sins against us with the love of Christ.  This does not mean we are approving of what they did or that they get a “get out of jail free card” this simply means that we are looking at them from a conquerors perspective and not a victim perspective.  Know that our God is bigger than any hurt or sin. Knowing that God is for us & longs to give us everything we need.

We can be bold and free when we are in the presence of God and therefore have the courage and confidence to look the past in the face and conquer it with the love of Christ, allowing us to empower each other.

-Laurie

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My Perfect Father Through Trials

Have you ever believed Satan’s lies?

Haven’t we all? The lie that I have believed for the longest time is that I wasn’t good enough. Most people say they didn’t feel good enough to be in a certain group, or good enough for a boy—but that’s never been my struggle. The person that I don’t feel good enough for is my father. Up until a few years ago my father was a part of my life, but still didn’t act as a father should, according to the Bible. He stopped picking my brother’s and I up to hang out, the phone calls and text messages stopped, the child support stopped. It honestly felt like his love for us had stopped. He seemed to live in a fantasy that he didn’t need to work and that everything would just fall into his lap. His priorities consisted of his music, (guitar and singing karaoke), beer and whatever woman he was dating at the time. To this day, he doesn’t provide for his children financially, spiritually, or emotionally.

I started believing that I wasn’t good enough for him and that I wasn’t worth his time, energy or money. I hated seeing my mother emotionally, physically and spiritually drained all of the time because the amount of stress that she had on her plate. She is a single mother providing and protecting her family all by herself. Seeing this broke me. Seeing my brothers grow up without a father figure broke me. Not having a proper example of how a man should treat his children confused me. I didn’t know what to do or where to turn. But through this hardship, the Lord has been so faithful to me by providing my family and me with the comfort, strength and peace to get through.

Christ has helped me overcome many trials and tribulations, but the one that stands out to me the most is my parents divorce. I was young when the divorce took place, but it has greatly affected me up to this day. Christ has shown me his peace and comfort throughout these hard times. He has constantly reminded me that when I’m at my weakest, he is at his strongest and when I am at my lowest, he is at his highest. This truth sustains me through my lowest points. God gives us all that we need daily, and my brothers and I just have to remember that even though we don’t have a good earthly father, we have a perfect Heavenly Father.

-Intern

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A Day in the Life of Junior High Me

I was thirteen, in seventh grade, and felt a sense that I just didn’t belong. My hair was breaking off. I had just hit puberty, and had acne like CRAZY! My self-esteem was so low it was sickening. I hated myself. I hated the way I looked, and I was taking it out on everyone; especially the ones who loved me, my parents.

No one wanted to be my friend. A boyfriend? Ha! Please! Forget about that.

I just wanted someone, other than my parents. to love me, but no one did. WHY?!

In March of 2003, I couldn’t take it anymore. I wasn’t getting along with my parents. I couldn’t find peace at home or school. So, one night after a big argument with my mom and dad, I went to my room and closed the door, hoping to never have to open it again. In one of the corners of my room laid a picture that had fallen, and its broken glass. I picked up the longest piece and put it to my wrist. I wanted to bleed out. I wanted  to feel the pain, because I was sure it didn’t feel as bad as what I was going through. At the time, I was wearing a gold cross around my neck that had been given to me by my mother.

Moments before I made the first cut, the necklace fell from my neck, in front of me onto the carpet. I remember, at first, staring at it, and then beginning to weep. That’s when I knew I needed Christ.

Once aware of this, I went to my mother, asking to go to church. We were invited to a church by a friend of my mother.  Soon, we were going to church every Sunday, and I got involved with the youth ministry. During one of our youth plays, an invitation was given, and I presented an outpour to God telling him that with Him is where I wanted to be. With that, I gave my life to Christ.

Since accepting Christ, I would be lying if I said that life has been a cakewalk. Dealing with our sin nature is never an easy task, but my journey towards spiritual growth has been awesome.

I must admit that I have slowed a lot of my own progress because I wanted to do my own thing, or got myself distracted over someone or something that had no relevance in my life.

One of the things that I love about God, though, is that He never makes you start over, but simply presses play from where you left off.

I dedicate this blog to my Lord and Savior Jesus Christ for bringing me so far. As I fight back tears writing this, I know that you’re not done with me, and have so much more in store for years to come.

—Day M.

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Joy in His Timing: It’s Worth the Wait

Today, I am in a season of waiting—a season that God has put me in as I wait to be healed. I have been waiting for almost three years. Though this seems to be a long time, I am thankful for it.

So you may be wondering,” What is this girl dealing with?”

In the summer of 2012, I was given the opportunity to go to Zacapa, Guatemala. When I found out that I had been selected to be on the team, I was overjoyed—and that is an understatement. The day came for us to leave, and little did I know that in the next 48 hours I would face sickness, death, and the scariest moments of my life. We finally reached our mission base, and an hour in I began to have a breathing attack—this is an attack that is similar to asthma but caused by my vocal chords. I was rushed to a local public hospital. There, I was not allowed to have a translator, was held down by Guatemalan doctors as they shouted words in Spanish and much more that would leave anyone traumatized and asking many questions. Upon returning to the states, it was found that I had broken and fractured ribs, as well as ripped muscle and cartilage. To this day, the doctors are still not sure why I have pain in my ribs, which leaves me still looking for medical answers.

During my waiting, I have often questioned:

Why God has not healed me yet?

 Why he allowed me to go through such a traumatizing event?

Yet, I have come to the conclusion that it is not my place to ask.

Instead of looking at this event with such a “poor me” outlook, I must look at all that God  has done, and is still doing through this event and my injuries. During the accident, God did not leave me; he kept me alive and protected me. He has drawn me closer to him through this, and is continuing to draw me closer to him daily, as I rely on his strength to continue through life.

The fact is, I have seen God work in my life more in these past three years than ever before. Now do not get me wrong, it is a struggle to get out of bed, get dressed, and go on with my daily duties. There have been days (and weeks) that I have not gotten out of bed, times that I have been angry and sad; but,  looking back on these almost three years, I have had to rely and have chosen to rely more on God then I ever thought was possible.

I have learned to find joy in God’s timing. Psalm 27:14 states, Wait for the Lord; be strong, and let your heart take courage; wait for the Lord!” (English Standard Version). In whatever you are waiting for in your life today, be patient and joyful in the Lord’s perfect timing.

–Chloe S.