Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Letting Go, Goodbye Balloons...

Once upon a time, a little girl held on to a bunch of colorful balloons. She was in control of them. She knew their colors, how many she had, and how many ribbons she had tied around her wrist to keep them from floating away. They belonged to her and no one could take care of them like she could. Every now and then, when one floated away, she'd replace it with another one. This little girl was sure she could handle them all no matter how many she had.

One day, the little girl found herself in the park longing to play with the other children. Who would watch her balloons? What if one escaped? Could she trust anyone else with her balloons? There were so many of them. After sitting a while contemplating, she decided she could not trust anyone. Slowly, she dragged her feet home. When her mother called her into the kitchen for lunch, the little girl hardly touched her food. Her mother asked what was wrong and the little girl replied, "Momma, I have all my balloons tied to my wrist. I cannot give them to anyone to watch because I don't think I can trust them. I wanted to play with the other children in the park today, but I couldn't let go of my balloons." Her mother shook her head and sighed. Lifting her daughter's face up she asked, "Honey, why not let go of those balloons? Wouldn't you rather have fun playing with the other children? Why are those balloons so important to you?" The little girl hadn't thought of why they were so important to her before. Looking up at the bunch of colorful balloons, tears began to stream down her face. She replied, "Momma, I've missed out on so many play dates, so many birthday parties, holidays, and time spent with family and friends having fun. I've spent so many nights awake worrying about losing a balloon. I don't even know why. They really aren't important. If anything, they are holding me back."

Realizing the insignificance of all the balloons the little girl had tied around her wrist, she took a deep breath and ran out the front door. Looking up at the sky, she reached her hand to her wrist where the balloons were tied. One by one, she let them go. She was down to one balloon when she dropped her head and cried, "Lord, please forgive me for holding onto these so long. Give me the strength to trust you and let them all go." As the last tear streamed down her cheek, the little girl watched the last balloon float up and away. Slowly, she turned to walk back into the house. There her mother awaited her. With open arms, she scooped her daughter up wrapping her in a bear hug. Whispering in her ear the little girl's momma said, "I have a surprise. Your friends will be over soon to play. We are going on a picnic at the playground today." The little girl smiled in relief. Now, she could play without worrying.

How many times do you find yourself carrying a wrist full of balloons? In other words, how many times do you find yourself replacing one worry with another? Do you feel that you can trust someone enough to confide in them your worries so that they may be in prayer for you? Once you've conquered one worry, do you find yourself replacing it with another? I believe we all struggle with replacing one worry with another during periods of our life. Doesn't it get tiring after a while?

Every time I think I've conquered that terrible habit, worrying, I find myself struggling again. Satan knows my weakness and it's so hard to give it up... to let all my balloons go. Currently, I'm on vacation with my family in a place I refer to as my second home. I was on the ski slopes the other day and fell pretty hard. Refusing help, I boarded down the mountain. Though once I reached my parents, I was distraught. I thought for sure something was broken or I'd soon fall into unconsciousness. As I tried to calm myself, momma made sure I was able to move. Slowly I walked back to the lodge and upon entering my room fell into a panic attack. Laying there, I realized, the Lord... my heavenly Father is in complete control. I was okay. I was alive. Soon I would feel better and nothing was drastically wrong. Sure, I was in pain... but not as bad as my mind conjured up. It was then that God showed me, it's not that I don't trust Him or that I have a lack of faith. I'm human. We are all stuck in this dieing flesh. What He did show me was that I needed to remember, in all things give Him the glory. Give Him the glory that He saved me.

Friends, there is so much to be thankful for. There is so much to live for. Don't let a wrist full of balloons tie you down. Live and let those balloons go. Cast your worries and fears on the Lord and He will give you peace.

Letting Go Through Scripture:

Cast all your anxiety on Him because He cares for you. 1 Peter 5:7

Cast your cares on the LORD and he will sustain you; he will never let the righteous fall. Psalm 55:22

Wednesday, December 7, 2011

Tis the Season

Once upon a time, it was a cold and rainy morning. Sitting in Starbucks where I should have been studying, I couldn't. My heart wasn't in it and all I wanted to do was find myself back in bed under piles of covers wishing I was far more ahead in the future than where I was and currently am. I am more than thankful for where God has me and how far I've come. But for some reason, it's been hard for me to keep optimistic these past several weeks. I once heard a saying,
"A glass of milk is always half full, half full of milk and half full of air. So it's never half empty." -unknown
Why is it so hard to be patient? Why is it so difficult for me to be truly happy? This morning I realized why I have to work so hard to stay up beat this time of year. It's the Christmas season where families come together and couples walk about hand in hand shopping for gifts as Christmas music blares through the department stores, car radios, and coffee shops. I should be thankful because the Lord has blessed my life greatly, but I'm constantly fighting the thoughts of what I don't have. All the Christmas songs played lately are more secular than Christian with lyrics about people in love.. blah blah blah... Sitting in Starbucks this morning, I longed for those Christmases past spent with my Papa, Nanny, aunts, uncles, and cousins... I longed for my other half... and I longed for my future family....

I want to say that I am happy with it being just me and God. I want to say I am happy spending Christmas with my momma, daddy, and brother and no one else. I want to say that I am happy with where I am in my life. There's a lot I "want" to say... but do I mean it? Things are always easier said than done... My prayer is that the Lord fills me up this season and reminds me the reason for the season. It's not about me... it's about our Savior who has come to give me and you eternal life. It's the celebration of His birth and His life on earth. Let us be filled by the Spirit. Let us be happy with who we are, our life, and for those we hold dear to our hearts.

I pray you feel warmth in your hearts. I pray you are overcome with an inner happiness and peace that cannot be explained. I pray you are not alone this Christmas and that even if you are, you feel Jesus in your presence.

I may not have a hand to hold, but Christ holds my heart. I may not have Christmases like those in the past, but I still have Christ's birth to celebrate. I may not have my future family now, but there is always God's promise of having one in the years to come. My motto: the glass is always half full.

The Words of the Lord:
A Psalm of David

1 The LORD is my shepherd, I lack nothing.
2 He makes me lie down in green pastures,
he leads me beside quiet waters,
3 he refreshes my soul.
He guides me along the right paths
for his name’s sake.
4 Even though I walk
through the darkest valley,
I will fear no evil,
for you are with me;
your rod and your staff,
they comfort me.

5 You prepare a table before me
in the presence of my enemies.
You anoint my head with oil;
my cup overflows.
6 Surely your goodness and love will follow me
all the days of my life,
and I will dwell in the house of the LORD
forever.

-Psalm 23:1-6

Wednesday, November 30, 2011

A Sea of Lights

Once upon a time, there's sat a young girl high in the sky looking out a small window onto the world below. There were cities, towns, and countrysides full of people.


Though she could not see them, she new they were there sleeping under a dark blanket in a sea of street lights. Looking to her left, the North star hung high next to the moon. Patches of clouds floated by in silence. It was so quiet... so lonely.... yet so beautiful. Feeling so close to God, her heart fluttered.

Landing back into reality, she reentered the hustle and bustle of the world around her. Only this time it was different. Through the chaos, she felt peace. Driving back home, the lights were no longer distant. The people were seen, and the warmth of Christmas began to fill the air. Families had decorated in celebration. Christmas trees glowed in more windows than in the past several years. Strung about homes were twinkling Christmas lights and festive wreaths. Though the world seemed to get increasingly commercialized, maybe... just maybe... more people were recognizing the true Spirit of Christmas... the real meaning!

How many times have you found yourself getting caught up in the "All I want for Christmas lists" and "Buy Buy Buying for your families?" Racing here and there for this and that... does it matter? I do believe it's "Tis' the season for giving," but is that the meaning of Christmas? No. Christmas is celebrating the birth of Jesus Christ. Our Savior who was born into this fallen world perfect in the image of God came to save us! Isn't that exciting? So listen, don't stress yourself out this Christmas, be at peace with Jesus and enjoy the season. Look at life through Christ. We are tiny from a far but we matter to Him more than anything else on the earth. The one and only God, all seeing and all knowing is looking down on us. You may not think you matter very much, you may be lonely this time of year without family, but know that our heavenly Father is holding you and loves you unconditionally. With Him, you are NEVER alone. You think it's pretty when street lights light up our world, well take a look when Christmas lights are strung everywhere... there's even more light glowing across the world this time of year. So let YOUR lights shine for our Savior! I couldn't help but think of the star that shone over Bethlehem the night of Jesus' birth when I looked out my window from up in the sky and saw the bright star hanging next to the moon. All praise be to God!


Merry Christmas Scripture:

Then an angel of the Lord stood before them. The glory of the Lord was shining around them, and they became very frightened. The angel said to them, "Do not be afraid. I am bringing you good news that will be a great joy to all the people. Today your Savior was born in the town of David. He is Christ, the Lord. This is how you will know him: You will find a baby wrapped in pieces of cloth and lying in a feeding box." Luke 2:9-12

"She will give birth to a son, and you will name him Jesus, because he will save his people from their sins." Matthew 1:21

Saturday, November 5, 2011

It's Unbelievable!

Once upon a time, I took a step back from life. My heart was being pulled in so many different directions I was unsure of which way was up, down, left, or right; yet everything was okay. The clock still ticked, the sun still rose, and the moon still hung in the night sky. Though time passed, in my head, everything stood still. The feelings that came over me were indescribable. I had finally reached the point in my relationship with Christ where I realized He is all I need. My soul felt consumed like a fire. God, the creator of all living and nonliving things breathed life into me. Over the years, I've seen Him play so many different roles in my life. At this very moment, I see Him as my groom. He has promised me eternity with Him. He claimed me as His own when I was only 5 years old. Since then, I had seen Him mostly as my heavenly Father. Now, I see Him as my Knight in Shining Armor!

It's unbelievable! At the start of my Sophomore year of college, I felt God working in me in ways I hadn't before. I felt the Creator at work. With part of my heart longing for Romania to be with the sweet babies in the village, another part longing to be with my family, another to be working with special needs children, and another longing for my future husband, my head went spinning. Having no idea what was in store for my life, I gave everything to God. God, knowing the desires of my heart put my mind at ease. Though I long to meet my husband, I have my eternal groom by my side forever. Though I'm not in Romania, my knight in shining armor is caring for them always. When I can't be with my family, He gives me the love, warmth, and strength to get me through. In times I cannot spend with special needs children, He reminds me of His plans. Though I cannot spend much time with them now, He is equipping me for helping them in the future.

As I lay thinking about my groom, my knight in shining armor, I am reminded of His perfection. I am reminded of His promises He has made me and will not break. When I said "I do" to Christ, I said it for all of eternity. I am His bride... and my relationship with Him is timeless. Though the clock still ticks, my life has no end. My relationship with my heavenly Father will never die. I am at peace and content with it being just Him and I. He is all I need through Christ who strengthens me.




Have you discovered Christ to be your knight in shining armor? I pray you find a relationship with Him that lasts forever.

Scripture:

Jesus replied, “Anyone who loves me will obey my teaching. My Father will love them, and we will come to them and make our home with them." John 14:23

"I have been crucified with Christ. It is no longer I who live, but Christ who lives in me. And the life I now live in the flesh I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me." Galations 2:20

Thursday, October 20, 2011

My Heart Sings!

Once upon a time, the scent of autumn lingered in the air. It was that time again, the time of year when leaves cover the ground in an array of colors. Taking in deep breaths of calm, crisp air, my heart felt at peace. Friends, let me just remind y'all, when Jesus said to follow Him, He never said it would be easy! Yet, now I've finally reached a point where my mind is at ease. I am perfectly content and overjoyed with where God has me right now.

This past weekend I celebrated my 20th birthday. The Lord has truly blessed me and continues to do so. I was overwhelmed with some of those blessings last weekend. We took a drive to a pumpkin patch and in the car I was surrounded by gifts. When I speak of gifts, I don't mean the kind that comes wrapped and tied with ribbon. The gifts I refer to are my parents... my brother...and a dear friend whose practically another brother. I can't begin to describe the feelings I have for those God has placed in my life. Give me family and friends any day over birthday presents! It is time and memories with them that mean more to me than anything in this world.

As the weekend came to an end, I spent my last day back home at my old high school with the special needs students I had interned with my senior year. Oh how I've missed them! As I walked the long hallway leading down to their classroom, I felt like running! There is nothing like being surrounded by a group of these kids! They love unconditionally. They are like milk to my cookies. I don't know where I'd be today if God hadn't placed that passion in my life... to work with special needs. They bring me back into reality. I get so focused on "me, me, me," and forget about others. I am happy and free around them. Seeing them made my birthday weekend that much more special.

Friends, I'm just so happy! I pray you are just as happy! I understand that life isn't always that delicious pumpkin spice latte that warms your heart on a blustery autumn day. However, I do hope that if your life is not very happy, you find that latte soon! I know it's a typical Sunday school solution, but God makes for the PERFECT latte! He warms my heart like no other! I am satisfied with who I am because of Him and I am fine with it being just the two of us. God has placed me in a loving church body and group of friends. I need not worry with what the future holds because the present is all that matters, and that amazes me. I am in love with my heavenly Father as He has consumed my soul.

My prayer is for you to feel your heart sing! I pray that you allow God to consume you in His love. I pray you relieve yourself of worry and place all mind, soul, and body into the hands of our Father.

Contentment in the Word:

"Let us give thanks to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ! For in our union with Christ he has blessed us by giving us every spiritual blessing in the heavenly world." Ephesians 1:3

"Fill us each morning with your constant love, so that we may sing and be glad all our life." Psalm 90:14

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Have I Told You Lately?



Once upon a time, I lived in a little ranch style house in Texas. My momma stayed home and my daddy worked. I remember waiting to hear the car pull up around 5pm every day, the time my daddy came home from work. My little brother and I would race to the saloon doors (yes... it was a VERY southwestern house) and scream, "Daaaddddddyyyyyy!" Wow, that seems like only yesterday.

As I grew older, my brother and I went from greeting our dad at the door to hollering "hey dad" from another part of the house. Then we hit the teen years. We went from hollering to waiting for him to come into the room where we were just to say, "Hey dad. How was your day?" Looking back, I wonder just how we lost that excitement we once had. Most every kid has had the parent they are closer to. Me and my momma have been inseparable; but my dad and I haven't always been.

It was this summer when I really started asking myself how well I knew my dad. I knew he had a job; though I still can't figure out to this day quite what he does... he's just too smart! He's taken us on wonderful vacations. He's been an amazing provider. He and my momma raised me to have a strong relationship with my heavenly Father by always pointing me back to Him. I know my dad's favorite candy. I know somewhat of his childhood. Most importantly, I know how much he loves me. That's when it hit me. Have you ever realized just how important it is to know you are loved by your daddy? It is Him I look to to see Christ. He is the one that sets the example for how we are to love others. My dad loves me no matter what mistakes I make. He believes in me and motivates me to do my best. He's taught me that my best is enough and because of that I continue to strive in my spiritual life and academically. You know that gut wrenching feeling when you disappoint someone? How about when you disappoint your dad? Now, how about our heavenly Father?

This school year, God has taught me so much. Just when I wonder what's next, I take a look at where I am. In these past few weeks, my dad accepted a job in Ohio. He'll be living with my momma and brother a whole lot farther away than now. You know that saying, "You don't realize what you have until it's gone." Well thankfully, my family isn't gone... but they'll be in another state. This is something I know I will struggle with as I struggle with the idea of it now. I never realized just how much I loved my dad until recently. I've always loved him... but this move is making us closer. I can't say where I'd be today if it weren't for him. God has truly blessed me! I am so thankful to be my daddy's little girl. Ever find yourself asking, "Have I told you lately...." Well, to my dad...
Have I told you lately just how much I love you? Have I told you how much you mean to me? You mean the world. I am proud of you. And I couldn't have asked for anyone better.

The Bible Says:

"Fill us each morning with your constant love, so that we may sing and be glad all our life." Psalm 90:14

"Children, obey your parents in the Lord, for this is right. Honor your father and mother- which is the first commandment with a promise- that it may go well with you and that you may enjoy a long life on the earth. Fathers, do not exasperate your children; instead, bring them up in training and instruction of the Lord." Ephesians 6:1-4

Monday, October 10, 2011

Just a Little Inquisitive...

Once upon a time, it had been a long day. Beginning with an early morning class (well, maybe not so early), and then sitting for nearly two hours in my afternoon class (our professor let us out nearly an hour early), I was ready for the day to end. I had plans to meet up with friends that night and attend a bonfire where we'd roast s'mores. Let me just say, chocolate, marshmallows, and graham crackers are delicious and whoever came up with the idea to put them all together was an absolute genius. While sitting around the bonfire that night, two young men walked up. I couldn't help but watch them out of the corner of my eye. Call me creeper if you want, but you know you've done it too! I sat there pondering what I'd do if one of them came over to talk to me. I found myself paying more attention to the guy in the button down shirt and jeans than the one wearing glasses. Rationalizing my thoughts, I remembered that slight problem I've had my whole life, I go for the wrong type of guys. Why on earth would this one be any different? So I played it cool and decided to let life happen. Within the hour, people began to clear out and the guy I found quite attractive joined in conversation with me and some of my friends. You know that saying guys and girls have: "They were great until they opened their mouth." Yes ladies and gentlemen, I am the queen bee when it comes to finding these types of guys. Hence what you've read in other posts about my "guy theories."

So let's just cut to the chase. My friends and I have him over for a game of Uno after the bonfire. I was pretty excited until he asks....
What can I bring? I have beer, vodka, and gatorade. Any of those sound good?

What on earth is it about guys? Must they all drink? What is the cause of their nonsense? How about this? Question asked: do you buy or smoke pot?

I won't buy it, but if it's available, I'll smoke it.

This is why girls have trouble finding dates. These boys need help. However, boys aren't the only ones. I have found many girls to be the same. It's just sad.

We recently had a talk on drinking at Campus Christian Fellowship. It's not a sin to drink. However, it is a sin to drink until you are drunk. The question is: what are your motives to drink?

Do you think that by drinking, it will solve your problems? Do you think that it will help you make friends? Do you smoke because it makes you look cool? Do you smoke to relieve stress?

Now then, once you've answered those questions: have any of you found that drinking and smoking solves anything?

I am not here to judge those who take part in drinking, smoking, or anything for that matter. God is the almighty judge. I'm just an inquisitive individual who loves to reason. I find that being myself around others is enough and I can be absolutely goofy without being drunk or high. I don't care what people think of me. God made me in His image. I love being me!

So ladies and gentlemen, take a look at yourself! You are amazing! You are wonderfully made! Our heavenly Father made you perfect and whole. Now take a step back and let go! If you find you don't like something about yourself, or problems are boiling up, give them to God! Stop trying to solve everything on your own! Take the easy way out and give it to God!

I think we spend too much time thinking about ourselves and not our heavenly Father! Next time you go to take a drink, offer a drink, get a high, or heaven knows... think about our Daddy in heaven. Think about how much He loves you.

My prayer for you is that God's desires become your desires. I pray that you find the strength to break down the walls that separate you from your friends and our heavenly Father. Dear Lord, help us to love and be who we are!

What does the Bible say?

"God met me more than halfway, he freed me from my anxious fears. Look at Him; give Him your warmest smile. Never hide your feelings from Him. When I was desperate, I called out, and God got me out of a tight spot." Psalm 34:4-6

"We are bringing you the Good News and are telling you to turn away from these worthless things and turn to the living God." Acts 14:15

Thursday, September 15, 2011

Awaken This Life.

Once upon a time, I fell asleep. Have you ever felt like periods of your life were spent asleep? There are times in my life where all I want to do is curl up in my bed and sleep through all the chaos around me. I never realized how easy it is for me to fall asleep during the middle of the day than at night until recently. Lord bless my friends; how fun is it to be watching a movie or hanging out and wonder "Where is Sara?" Oh no worries, I'm there with them; only I'm asleep. When I am awake and focused, my friends can tell me anything; my ears work just fine. However, these eyes just don't want to stay open... I can picture it now, drifting away on a cloud, and returning when the air is clear and the problems are solved. Though that sounds wonderful, it wouldn't fix a thing. Problems don't resolve on their own. Decisions can't make themselves. Problems and decision making need to be met head on. Only what happens when there are too many decisions to be made? What happens when there are too many problems to be fixed?

Tonight, I took a look in the mirror and really woke up. Thank the Lord for Morgan (my best friend). In 20 minutes I was able to vent about myself like no one's business. Here's what we concluded:

1) I am super scared to lose friends.
- After losing all my friends in middle school... and then losing them after high school... I can't handle losing any more. I start to think there is something wrong with me. Any time I've ever lost a friend, no one tells me why we aren't friends or what I did wrong. Therefore, I can be overbearing when it comes to making new friends. I want to solve their problems and make them happy when they are sad. So here's what I learned, I need to back off and realize I can't solve anyone's problem. It's not my responsibility. I can be there for them; but on their terms, not mine.

2) I am guy stupid.
- Okay, this does not mean guys are stupid. I simply mean that I don't understand them. They say women are hard to figure out. Well, don't leave out men! I am an open book. Ask me anything and I'll be sure to give you an answer. I am outspoken and talk about whatever is going on in my life. Am I a handful? Sure, I can be a handful... a handful of emotions that I wear on my sleeves. So, I've concluded that I'm the official SCARECROW. I scare guys away. I tend to say I don't have expectations for people, well... it's a total different story when it comes to guys I'm interested in. If I am into them, I expect A LOT. Is that bad? Nope. Though I need to remind myself, I need not go chasing any of them. Whoever thinks he can handle me... the basket case crazy woman with feelings... well, he'll find me someday. I'm only 19 and it really shouldn't matter whether I understand guys right now or ever. The only man I'll ever have to understand is my husband. So it's time I stop concerning myself with silly crushes and just let life happen.

3) I can come off seeming bossy.
- Yeah, so taking on people's problems... try sounding like a parent. Sometimes I don't know when to keep my mouth shut. I make decisions for me, myself, and I. I can't make other people's decisions. Though the one thing I can't stand is when a friend asks me what I think... and then stab me in the back (not literally). What am I suppose to do, give advice they want to hear? What if the advice or opinion I have doesn't match theirs? That is one way I've lost friends. Does that mean I forfeit truth? No. No matter how scared I am of losing a friend, it doesn't mean I should withhold my true feelings.

To sum this up, Lord bless my friends and family. Bless Morgan for putting up with me all these years. Help me not to drive away my friends. Help me to be positive and uplifting acknowledging You in all my ways. I pray for the times I've slept to try and rid my problems. That doesn't get me anywhere. I pray with every negative thought, I replace them with thoughts of You. By myself, I am asleep.

With my Savior, I am awake. I need not fear, for God's plan is greater than that of my own. Greater is He who is in me than he who is of this world.

Bible Time!

As iron sharpens iron, so a friend sharpens a friend. Proverbs 27:17

A wise youth harvests in the summer, but one who sleeps during harvest is a disgrace. Proverbs 10:5

Think of ways to encourage one another to outbursts of love and good deeds.
Hebrews 10:24

Tuesday, September 6, 2011

Somewhere Out There....

Once upon a time, I wanted someone to talk to so badly. Wow, sounds like I'm friendless! Whoops! I have friends; I have wonderful friends who have blessed my life in countless ways. However, the stuff going on in my life, I can't just blurt out. Of course, I can always talk to my family; and my heavenly Father is always listening. However, every time I look up at the moon, I know who I want to talk to. I know who I want to share what's going on in my life with. I know who I want to spend forever on earth with. Only, I haven't met him yet. I'm not just looking for anybody. I want my husband God has promised me. I imagine every girl secretly does. In fact, I'm sure guys do as well.
I know that every time I look up into the beautiful night time sky, he's somewhere out there. The same moon that shines through my window shines on him. Although I don't know him, I pray for him. I pray for whatever is going on in his life at this very moment is in God's hands. Have you ever thought to pray for your future husband/wife? My momma told me when I was little that she always prayed I'd marry the right guy someday. I decided I needed to get praying on that as well; so surely with both of us praying, I'll find him. Some people may think I sound desperate; but I know that once you find that right person, you want your life to start with them as soon as possible. I want Mr. Right. I want to matter to someone besides my family and my heavenly Father. I want someone who will talk with me into all hours of the night just because he loves me and cares about what I have to say. I want to hear his thoughts, opinions, and life stories. When he's sad or sick, I want to take care of him just as he'd care for me.
So, this has mostly been about what I want. I... I... I.... But you must know that what I want above all is what God wants for me. I have faith that He will bring me Mr. Right at the RIGHT time. Man, it's so difficult to be patient though. Yet, God continuously reminds me how much better my life is when I rely on Him and take my focus off myself. So for now, I'll keep praying for my SOMEWHERE OUT THERE.

BIBLE TALK:

Take delight in the Lord and He will give you the desires of your heart. Psalm 37:4

This is the boldness we have in God's presence: that if we ask God for anything that agrees with what He wants, He hears us.
1 John 5:14

Be joyful in hope, patient in affliction, faithful in prayer. Romans 12:12

Thursday, August 25, 2011

The Inner Battle.

Once upon a time, my life went crazy! I'm not one for drama, but since middle school, it's found me. I should probably remind you that I'm the biggest worrier EVER... but not consistent. I get better at NOT worrying, and then BOOM, the worrying I tried so hard to overcome slaps me in the face. I can't handle change well. Right now at this moment in my life, there is a lot of change and although it's AMAZING change, it's making me crazy. I'm on my own again in an apartment, but praise the Lord it's not in downtown ATL. I have wonderful friends; but I haven't had friends like these before.

My life was simple. I had momma, dad, and the best brother ever. I had two best friends and that was it. I never dated; I was always lead on and left heartbroken. So I stayed to myself, my family, and my best friends. Through those years, I became a momma's girl and that's usually the only person I did stuff with. I babysat because children have always made me happy and I worked with special needs because they, all like children, love unconditionally. During school, I had a few friends (we didn't really hang out after school)... but I tend to take on people's problems, and when I couldn't help them, it made me feel emotionally drained. I've always been super sensitive to what people think of me, yet I still manage to be outspoken. BUT NOW ALL THIS IS CHANGING. AHHHHHHH!

Last Spring I decided my time was up in the city and God wanted me elsewhere. My best friend came out of nowhere with all these papers on a speech pathology program at the school she attends. I didn't think twice; I knew God was calling me to make the change. It was a great change; I was looking forward to it, but knowing how I deal with changes, it honestly scared me. I had already made friends down town and was use to the environment, although I didn't like it. But I knew it was time to go.

In July, the BIG change hit. My parents are making some major decisions in their life right now (NOT bad ones) that have a huge impact on me because I'm so close to them. I've wished several times that they would be a little less awesome so I could have been that kid that couldn't wait to go to college and live his/her own life. However, I'm stuck to them like glue. God blessed me with them for a reason; I wouldn't be who I am today without either of them. So with everything, going on, I took a trip back to my past and flipped! My inner battle started all over.

I have struggled with anxiety attacks off and on for almost 7 yrs. Every time I thought I was over and done with them, they'd start up again. It wasn't till a few Sundays ago that I was sitting in church and had this vision of battle. Inside I felt like I could see God fighting Satan. I'm the type of person that is fine unless I have too much time to myself. My thoughts start running a million miles an hour and I honestly feel like I'm about to black out. So in July, when all this change started taking place as I prepared for school, moving into a new apartment, and leaving my friends from down town, I began feeling panicky. My anxiety attacks have always been at night (Hence why I own little kid dvds; they relax me). I fight them off unless they are really bad. Yet the times I can't, I feel like I'm 5 crawling in bed with my mom. Come August, I really got nervous about moving and had panic attacks during the day. Really now, how super is it to be waiting for a drink in Starbucks and then ending up in your car calling your mom because you feel like you're going to faint? You know what I find really crazy, all this nonsense is because of worry. God makes it very clear throughout the Bible that His children have nothing to fear and worry about; yet I'm the crazy one in the parking lot crying all because of the stupid thoughts Satan puts in my head. All I can do is pray. Many times in the past 2 weeks I've found myself blaring Christian music and praying Satan out of my head. I mean, what do I have to worry about?

Well, I can worry about anything. You can worry about anything. Though this is what it comes down to: God has already fought the battle and won. I may feel crazy inside, but I'm not the only one struggling. Christians all over the world are having to remind themselves that God is in control. We have to teach ourselves to focus on what God is doing in our life and the blessings He has for us. So here's my short list of blessings for now:

1) God has placed the most amazing people in my life.
2) I love my new school.
3) God has given me a love for children and special needs.
4) I am continuously reminded of God's faithfulness to me.
5) I am a child of God.

I pray that anyone feeling alone remembers our heavenly Father. He has fought for us and won. Though we may struggle in flesh on earth, we will be reunited with him in His glory in heaven.

Read it and stop worrying!

Remember that I commanded you to be strong and brave. Don't be afraid because the Lord your God will be with you everywhere you go. Joshua 1:9

There are many rooms in my Father's house. I wouldn't tell you this, unless it was true. I am going there to prepare a place for each of you. After I have done this, I will come back and take you with me. Then we will be together. You know the way to where I am going. John 14:2-4

I consider that the suffering of this present time are not worth comparing with the glory that is to be revealed to us. For the creation waits with eager longing for the revealing of the sons of God. For the creation was subjected to futility, not willingly, but because of him who subjected it, in hope that the creation itself will be set free from it's bondage to corruption and obtain the freedom of the glory of the children of God. Romans 8:18-21

Sunday, August 14, 2011

Someone Special

Once upon a time, a young girl was blessed with the most amazing baby brother. She would carry him around the house, show him off to friends and family, and chase him and his friends around in circles. As time passed, the two became inseparable. When she was friendless, he was there along with his friends to keep her from feeling lonely. When he was friendless, she invited him along with her friends. They would go bowling together, out to lunch, and she'd sneak him Starbucks and Chickfila during school. All their friends said they might have well been twins; wherever one went, so did the other.

The young girl was me of course. I just wanted to share a little bit about how much my brother means to me! He's the one person I can talk to about most everything (besides my heavenly Father and my Momma). It's fun to talk about our faith, the future, what type of person we see each other marrying, where we'd live, traveling, etc... We've both gone through periods of anxiety making it easier to help each other and grow in our faith. God has blessed me with my brother in more ways than I can put into words. We fight in the spiritual battle side by side. He backs me up, and cheers me on. God has blessed us with a strong family unit. Our parents have raised us to be close, love no matter what, and never go to bed angry at one another. We have our tiffs, but that's life. My brother is very special to me; he holds that place in my heart no one else can ever fill.

I pray you hold your family and siblings close to your heart. I pray you have a relationship full of blessings, love, and contentment. As brothers and sisters in Christ we are to love one another. There may be periods of dislike, but strength comes through love. My love for Christ has not only strengthened my relationship with Him, but with others. There may be times of frustration with my heavenly Father, but He always shines through and loves me regardless. I may be irritated now and then with family and my brother, but my love for them is more powerful than my flesh.

I ask you to pray for broken families; that the mighty Healer heals their hearts. A family without Christ as the center of their lives is like the sea animals without water; they die away. Families all around the world are splitting up. I pray as time goes on, that families come together in Christ. May Christ be the super glue in your family, the one who strengthens and holds you together in love.

Love in the Word:

And now these three remain: faith, hope, and love. But the greatest of these is love. 1 Corinthians 13:13

This is how we know what love is: Jesus laid down His life for us. And we ought to lay down our lives for our brothers. 1 John 3:16

Whoever does not love does not know God, because God is love.
1 John 4:8

Wednesday, August 3, 2011

Singing...... in the Shower!

Once upon a time, I sang in the shower. On second thought... I always sing in the shower unless I have too much on my mind. I'm sure my family loves to hear me belting out notes only dogs can hear (my poor puppy). Then I think of those times in church during praise and worship when all I can hear are notes way off key from the person next to me. Don't act like the thought has never crossed your mind... "Please be quiet! Your singing is terrible." If you haven't, congratulations; you are one in a million!

Have you ever thought about what God thinks when we sing.... or when that one person you wish would "be quiet" sings "terribly?" God, our Creator made us; we are made in His image. He has sent His one and only son to die for our sins so that we may live eternally with Him one day in heaven. Do you not think for that He deserves all of our praise and worship? Think of how wonderful He feels when His tone deaf child sings Him praise! Therefore, I'm teaching myself to smile when I hear those notes way off key... and I can guarantee my family has heard plenty from me!
Lately I've found myself singing "My Redeemer Lives" every time I go to sing! I've heard the song many times, but never truly focused on the lyrics until recently.



"Who taught the sun where to stand in the morning".... Can YOU believe the Biggest star in the sky was placed there by our Heavenly Father?

"I know my Redeemer lives".... HE lives! My Heavenly Father, my one and ONLY Lord and Savior lives! Doesn't it make you want to jump in a hot shower and belt it out so it rings throughout the house? Even MORE... doesn't it make you want to tell the WORLD?!

"He runs to the weary, the worn, and the weak"... My heavenly Daddy makes the weary, the worn, and the weak all better! Do you know any other daddy that can do that?

"Conquered death to bring me victory"... God in human flesh died for Me and You so we may NEVER die! Has anyone else done that for you? NO!!! He cares for His children so much that He sacrificed Himself! Would you give your life for sinners?

"All of creation testify"... ALL! I'm not the only one testifying for my Savior! All of creation will testify!

Can you imagine what it will be like when that day comes, that glorious day... the day we will meet our God face to face! Oh how I praise Jesus for that day!

Showering Scripture:

You alone are the Lord, Creator of the heavens and all the stars, Creator of the earth and those who live on it, Creator of the ocean and all its creatures. You are the source of life, praised by the stars that fill the heavens. Nehemiah 9:6

All men shall [reverently] fear and be in awe; and they will declare the work of God for they will wisely consider and acknowledge that it is His doing. Psalm 64:9

I am with you always. Matthew 28:20

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Summer Time...... and the Livin' is Easy

Once upon a time, I discovered my summer "home away from home"... a place I could have stayed until the leaves began to change. Almost every year my family goes on a vacation with a couple my parents met on their honeymoon 21 years ago along with their two kids and puppy named Teddy. This year's destination was Seaside, Fl. Let me just start by saying that these vacations together have meant more to me than family reunions (although I've only been to two that I can remember). We have gone to Seaside several times all together and it never gets boring. I've come to the conclusion that the beach is one of the few places where a person could never tire of unless they simply don't like warm climates and being barefoot in the sand. As I laid on the beach basking in the sun, there was no where else I'd rather be. My cousin Emily went along (new life long travel buddy) and we soaked up sun rays together as we munched on Buffalo flavored pretzels while listening to our Ipods. How often do we get the chance to stop what we're doing and relax? I always feel the need to be going and doing; but never when I'm on the beach. Everything seems easy, as if God placed an Easy button in front of me giving me rest to regain a steady focus on Him. My "home away from home" pulled me off the fast lane.

I am so thankful He provided me that special time. He was preparing me for what was to come. This past week, my (dog) Maddie passed away. I miss my Maddie an awful lot; but I thank God for her time on earth. My dad called to tell my grandmother that Maddie passed away; she used that phone call to say some terrible things to my dad. She called my mom and was so very ugly to her as well. Within minutes the phone was in my hand and it happened. I let go 19 years of hurt and frustration. My grandmother basically disowned me a couple years ago. I have forgiven her for every time she hurt me. However, I felt it was time for her to understand what she's put me and her whole family through.

I've never been so upset before, but I'm proud to say that the Lord held my tongue and I did not let out one cuss word at her. I don't think she took the news all too well... nor did she believe it to be true. Basically, I'm a bitter child, terrible granddaughter, and a liar who has no relationship with my heavenly Father. But you know what, I don't honestly care what she thinks about me. My heavenly Father knows me inside and out. He has blessed me with wonderful parents who take an interest in my life and are there to support me 100%. I praise my ONE and ONLY Savior for His grace, mercy, and love for me and all of His children. He has reminded me over the past few days that what my grandmother thinks of me is not true and I do not need to believe any lies Satan has fed me through her. It saddens me to think that my grandmother does not have the relationship my daddy (her own son) has with his heavenly Father.

My dad and I were talking the other week and he said something to me that seemed impossible at the time; he told me to try to see the good in my grandmother. Well, I must say that's the biggest challenge I've ever been faced with in my life. It wasn't til recently when I realized, no matter how filled she is of meanness, she had my daddy. I do not know exactly what kind of childhood he had, but because of her, he learned about our heavenly Father. Whether my grandmother is a believer or not, my daddy is. So there... I found some good. I do not want anyone to read this and think I am "bitter" or I "hate" my grandmother. I honestly do not. Before I hung up with her, I told her I would continue to pray for her and that I loved her. (Though I know she didn't believe that either). Like my momma has always said, "You can't change a person."

I'm doing much better now. It's very difficult sometimes not to believe Satan's lies. But I'm here to tell you, that with my heavenly Daddy in your heart... it's easier not to believe those lies. I pray that anyone who has ever hurt you, that you forgive despite the pain they may bring. It's easy to anger; but then I remember, Christ died for me just as He did for everyone else. He forgives me. He'll forgive my grandmother. It's recognizing and accepting the wrong we've done and bringing ourselves to kneel at the cross and repent. Don't wait til tomorrow. Tomorrow may be too late.

Believe it or Not:

Be kind and compassionate to one another, forgiving each other, just as in Christ God forgave you. Ephesians 4:32

Lord, heal me, and I will truly be healed. Save me and I will truly be saved. You are the one I praise. Jeremiah 17:14

Whom have I in heaven but you? And earth has nothing I desire besides you. My flesh and my heart may fail, but God is the strength of my heart and my portion forever. Psalm 73:25-26

Sunday, May 8, 2011

"Whiny Butt Self"

Once upon a time, I felt like a little old lady; one who was quite a whiny butt. What a hypochondriac... always complaining of ailments and becoming so needy and clingy that I started disliking myself; not who I was, but how I felt and my actions. Praise the Lord, my family can stand living with me at times when I feel my "old, whiny butt self" coming on! Imagine hearing this all day, "Momma, my arm hurts and I don't know why... My heart is racing... I'm anxious... My head hurts... etc!" Do you think that's irritating? How about this, "Momma, I need you..." over and over again? Kids normally give that up when their 5 unless something is physically or mentally wrong. Here I get so wrapped up in myself, that I forget about those in the world who are actually suffering. It's a terrible habit. No wonder God still has me single... who'd want to date a mess like me right now? LOL I'm still in the molding process and hoping God helps me to rid this "whiny butt self" out of me soon!

In my earlier posts, you may have read where I was once a worry wart. Later, in that post, I made it clear that I am way better at not worrying than I used to be. However, that doesn't necessarily mean that I NEVER worry. How many people can actually sit down and not worry, complain, or think about themselves for an entire day? It's impossible!

Now is the time to deduce why my "whiny butt" has presented itself lately. Stress can cause a person to feel gloomy, irritable,tired, and selfish. Therefore, all those times I held back my tears during Freshman Year of college have caught up with me making me an emotional basket case. I made my first C in college, and though I have a great GPA, I felt like a failure (forget my parents were so wonderful and uplifting!). Unmentionables are making me so darn frustrated because I can't see the BIG PICTURE God has for my life and family. On top of all of that, I feel as though I'm in a waiting period... waiting for God to answer me. These things should be behind me, or not bothersome. Though I cannot pretend I'm not affected, I need to learn how to breathe and push on. Yet, I still feel like laying down and crying my eyes out. Maybe that's what I need... just let go and give everything to God.

How often do you find yourself bottling up your emotions? Do you feel tired and gloomy? Do you feel a dark cloud hovering? Take a step back and ask yourself, "What am I keeping inside of me that has me feeling down?" Then pray and give your burdens to God. It's amazing the joy and strength you will feel enter your body again.

So here's my goal:
Letting go and realizing God is in control. (aka: leaving my "old whiny butt self" behind").

Words to build your Foundation:

"Praise be to the Lord, to God our Savior,who daily bears our burdens."
-Psalms 68:19

"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

Monday, April 25, 2011

Tormented

Once upon a time, a young girl was called out of class by one of her teachers. Cornering her, he asked, "Why did you get out of my class?" Shaking, the young girl tried to answer. Her teacher's eyes burned with fire as he stared at her ready to pounce. The young girl still could not answer. Within seconds an administrator came walking down the hall causing the girl's teacher to run away before getting caught. The girl ran back into class as the administrator ran to get the principal.
Moments later, the young girl was pulled out of class again, this time, by the administrator. She hurried her along to the principal's office to tell him everything that had just happened. The young girl told him how she was cornered by her teacher and asked why she'd requested a class change. The principal called her mother and had the young girl file a report on the teacher. While filing the report, the teacher who had cornered her burst into the office and dug his fingers into her shoulder asking her if everything was okay. She froze, and he ran out. The principal stood astonished and promised to keep the young girl locked in his office until the end of school for her safety. She refused and went around the school with him instead.

The cause of this incident: the young girl had turned her teacher in for his lack of teaching, vulgar language, and request to be "marched around hanging from a cross..." etc.

Within days, the teacher told the students who'd turned him in. Instead of supporting the young girl, they all turned against her. The teacher had them jumping and tormenting her. Friends she'd had since Kindergarten formed a hatred against her. Her parents fought and fought to have the teacher fired, but did not know how to help their daughter get out of the situation with only a month left of school.

The young girl spent so many nights fearing the many nightmares that played over and over again in her sleep. So many nights were spent in her parents' bed. Her mother would hold her and they'd pray until she fell asleep.

For those of you who didn't know, this is my story; the young girl was me. In middle school, I went from having friends to friendless within a matter of weeks. I was bullied and thrown away as if I were nothing but a piece of garbage. Looking back on this, it made me think of Christ. On earth, He was tormented, beaten, and hated by many. He suffered the ultimate sacrifice. Our sin nailed Him to the cross. He paid the price. As a child of God, we are to expect persecution and hatred for loving and believing in our heavenly Father. I pray nothing like this ever happens to you, but it made me realize just how selfless God is, that He would send His only begotten son to give us the opportunity to spend eternity with Him in heaven.

My momma would lay with me at night and remind me, "Just think of what Jesus went through." Standing up for my Heavenly Father is more important to me than anything on this earth. He created me for His purpose and His purpose only. As for the teacher that brought on my living nightmare, my prayers go out to him. Anyone that can boldly ask to be nailed to a cross, marched around the school, etc.... needs prayer. No one takes the place of Jesus.

My life has not been easy; Christ never said following Him would be easy. Being saved by the blood of Christ does not mean your life will be smooth sailing. However, to imagine life without Him seems impossible. I could not imagine having gone through middle school without my Heavenly Father protecting me and carrying me when I was too weak to walk. I will never have to worry about Him leaving, hating, or rejecting me. Once you accept Christ into your life, He is with you for eternity.

How does it feel to be rejected? Has someone ever mistreated you? Think about how many people reject our Heavenly Father. Now, how does it feel to know that God loves you and cares about you and will never reject you?

His Word:

“If the world hates you, keep in mind that it hated me first. If you belonged to the world, it would love you as its own. As it is, you do not belong to the world, but I have chosen you out of the world. That is why the world hates you. Remember what I told you: ‘A servant is not greater than his master.’ If they persecuted me, they will persecute you also. If they obeyed my teaching, they will obey yours also."
-John 15:18-20

"You, dear children, are from God and have overcome them, because the one who is in you is greater than the one who is in the world."
-1 John 4:4

Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Throw Me a Line!

Once upon a time, there was a group of young adults setting out on a voyage. They mapped out there voyage months before they shipped off. With their destination set to the Turks and Caicos Islands, they set sail leaving the Florida Keys behind. Days later, they stationed themselves about the boat in hopes of spotting land. According to the map, they should've been 200 miles from the islands. Hours passed, and still no land came into view. Evening came and they still had not reached land. With little hope, they gathered together, bowed their heads, and prayed.
Night had passed as the sun began to rise on the horizon. Still, with no sight of land, they feared what lay ahead. The water grew choppy and clouds slowly began to roll in. Where was God? Panicking, they prayed again. Hours passed as the rain fell lightly across the sea. What went wrong? Where were the islands? This journey was not going according to their plan.
By mid afternoon, worry set in. They only packed so much food. What if it ran out? What if they were stranded in the middle of the sea? Moments later, one of the girls looked across the ocean. She yelled up to the heavens, "God where are you? Why have you not answered?" As tears streamed down her face, land appeared. Shouts for joy were heard across the boat; soon they would make it to land.
Upon their arrival, they noticed that the people seemed different. The climate was a bit off from what they'd expected as well. Where had they landed? Confused, they asked a man sitting on the dock. "You're in Puerto Rico," said the man. In shock, the group decided it best to stay put and check into a hotel.
After checking in, they each took turns calling home. One of the young girls was first to make the call to let her parents know they were fine. Her father answered with great joy to find her and the group safely checked into a hotel. He had been concerned after watching the news the previous day and hearing of the massive hurricanes blowing through the Turks and Caicos Islands. After hanging up the phone, she turned to her friends and said, "God watched out for us and saved us from the storms."



Do you ever feel like God isn't answering your prayers? When it seems like God isn't answering, do you try to figure out the answer to your prayer yourself? How many times do you try to do things on your own without God?



This week, I've really been focused on what Christ meant when He said to pick up our cross and follow Him. There have been so many times when I felt sure I knew God's plans for my life, only to find out they were my plans, and not His. So often we map out our own path and throw God's plan to the side. But when it comes down to it, God's plan is way better than that of our own. Like the young adults who had mapped out their journey, they intended to land in the Turks and Caicos Islands only to find themselves in Puerto Rico. Thanks to our wonderful Savior, He saves us from our self. When we go to Him and ask for His guidance and His help, He will put us back on His path following after Him. I would much rather end up in the destination God has set for my life than one I've set for myself. God always answers prayers. They may not be answered in the way we want them to or in the time we hope for, but the goal is to continuously seek His guidance. For if we seek His will for our life, we seek His blessings.

The Line to Jesus:

Then Jesus said to his disciples, "If anyone would come after me, he must deny himself and take up his cross and follow me."
-Matthew 16:24

"The Lord is near to all who call on Him, to all who call on Him in truth."
-Psalms 145:18

Monday, January 31, 2011

At the Crossroads

Once upon a time, I moved to the big city! Those of you who have kept up with my blog... yes, I am referring to the wonderful college I attend in the heart of Atlanta. I had no idea what I was getting myself into; all I knew was that God wanted me here.

Have you ever been placed in a situation that you wouldn't have chosen for yourself, and had no clue as to why you were there?

Welcome to my life! In high school, God revealed my passion. Around the time of my sophomore year, I felt sure that my career would be in physical and occupational therapy. When thinking of schools to apply to, I had no doubt where I was suppose to attend. I chose the school I am attending for a major in physical therapy, and because I knew in my heart that God wanted me here. Well, after a semester... I hated it. I entered a spiritual war zone! Some nights, I'd cry myself to sleep thinking, "Come on now God, why do you want me here? I want to leave this hell hole!" It bothered me that God wouldn't just tell me His plans. Fear, anxiety, and stress kept building up...

Christmas Break came just in time! I felt God was telling me to just hang in there a little bit longer! So after a lovely Christmas with the family, I headed back to school. On the drive back as I got closer to school, I felt this heavy weight on my shoulders. Yet, God didn't leave me... No, my heavenly Father has been closer than ever! There have been instances where I've felt something bad could have happened to me, whether it be my bag stolen, a homeless man trying to get money from me, or just walking past a creepy person... but every time I've felt uneasy, it's as if I stepped into a bubble. I've started to believe that I have a guardian angel walking with me. Although I can't see my angel, I almost sense he is there, and that maybe... those people who could have brought me harm... saw my angel!

I've learned to trust God to take care of me! I felt that He was calling me to spend time in His word, so I've started Genesis and am almost finished! Most importantly, I've made my prayer time much longer. The more people I meet, the more people I pray for. I love the new friends I have in my life! I know my heavenly Father loves them just as much! So I am praying that these sweet people come to know my Daddy in Heaven! After wondering and pleading God to give me answers as to why He's sent me here... I feel in my heart... I needed to learn to be a soldier, a better witness, and how to give my Daddy my undivided attention! My focus is on Him... and where He takes me next, I know He'll show me the way!


Where is your focus? Are you standing at the crossroads wondering where or what God wants for your life? Do you feel alone? Pray. Pray for wisdom and knowledge.

Visit these websites:

http://apostles.org/live/

http://www.oneplace.com/ministries/leading-the-way/player/biblical-cure-for-depression-part-1-153187.html


Scripture Says:

"Protect those who love you and who are happy because of you. Lord, you bless those who do what is right; you protect them like a soldier's shield." Psalm 5:11-12

"The Lord is my light and my salvation; whom shall I fear? The Lord is the strength of my life; of whom shall I be afraid?" Psalm 27:1

Monday, January 10, 2011

The Angels Had a Pillow Fight!!

Once upon a time, I looked out my window around 12am to find a light blanket of snow covering the ground, and little clumps of white, sparkling flakes whirling beautifully in the air. The beginning of a new year, a time to start fresh, another year of blessings, and within a little over a week... January 9th to be exact... a gift from heaven... the South has finally experienced a Winter Wonder Land that hasn't been seen here for many years. The snow covered trees, streets, and mailboxes... it covered rooftops, chimneys, street lights, cars, and driveways. All was quiet except for the children laughing as they went sledding down hills, making snowmen, and having snowball fights. It's as if God was saying... here's our gift, a blessing from above, one that can be enjoyed by all.

As a child, I spent a year in New England. Snow is of course, very common there. I can remember my brother and I running to the field in the middle of the neighborhood with our parents. We'd play outside until our face went numb and our cheeks turned pink. Snow can make anyone feel like a child again... my parents would throw just as many snowballs as we did, and make snow angels, and snowmen... It is a season like no other.

When we moved down South, the winters saw very little snow... and if we ever did, it didn't stick, or it melted within a few hours. Therefore, we'd enjoy a few days out west, or drive up to Ohio for a week of sledding and building igloos with cousins. However, as of January 9th, our winter season has changed for the South. There was so much snow, schools have been closed for 2 days, and many have been out in the neighborhoods playing! Growing up, adults used to say, "The angels must be having a pillow fight" at the first signs of snow. Well... now we have a reason to praise God for providing his angels with pillows!

With this winter blessing, I would also like to point out that although it is such a wonderful gift, I would like everyone to remember those who cannot fully enjoy it. I have a dear friend who is homeless. He lives on the streets of Atlanta and he is not in good health. Pray that he comes to know our heavenly Father. Pray that God blesses him with food and warmth. There are many like him who are out there struggling to survive. I must admit, before college... I did not have a heart for the homeless. I was actually very scared of them and thought they were all out to get me for whatever they needed. But, I have found that to be quite untrue. Their are some... I do not have respect for... who I don't think have the right to be on the streets (those who are capable of a job and use others to obtain money for drugs, alcohol, etc...). Yet, there are many like my friend who are not mentally capable and who have many psychological issues... those on the streets I respect because they respect me.

I also ask that you remember the elderly. The snow and ice can be most dangerous for them along with the extremely cold weather. Pray that they keep in good health and that God watches over them... that they do not fall, or catch pneumonia.

And while you pray for these 2 groups of people... enjoy our sweet blessing from above. I'm most sure God was looking down at His children today with a smile on His face as He watched us play, drink hot cocoa, eat snow cream, and sit by a warm cozy fire. Makes me think of the book "If Jesus Came to my House." I'd play with Him, make Him hot cocoa, and give Him the coziest seat next to a toasty fire in the fireplace..... someday :)

Get The Word:

"Let all who take refuge in You be glad; let them ever sing for joy. Spread Your protection over them, that those who love Your name may rejoice in You."
-Psalm 5:11

"God bless you and keep you, God smile on you and gift you, God look you full in the face and make you prosper."
-Numbers 6:24-26