January 31, 2010

Unwelcomed Visitors...

I find myself staring at my computer screen unable to sleep tonight.

Condemnation is knocking at the front door...

Guilt is pounding at the back door...

Failure is tapping at my window...

"Let me in!" I hear over and over again...

I make my way to the front door, ready to open the door for this well-known visitor, when my heart is pierced with a revelation so profound that it may just change the way I open the door forever.

I hear a soft voice... A voice that bids me permission to leave these rude and obnoxious intruders outside where they belong...


"You don't have to open the door."


I whisper and softly explain that these visitors are my friends. Although I spend weeks cleaning up the chaotic mess they leave behind, they are familiar...and constant...and I always let them in...

"Maybe it's time for new friends...My name is Grace..."

The voice is appealing...much more pleasant than those screaming outside who just want to tear me and my house apart...

The more I speak with Grace, the less I hear the pounding of those outside, who long to wreak havoc in my life...

Grace introduces me to her friends; Love, Forgiveness, & Peace...

...Before long, the noise outside disappears...as my old friends (Condemnation, Guilt, and Failure) get tired of waiting for me to open the door...and finally leave.

---------------------------------------------------
When Condemnation, Guilt, and Failure come knocking at your door, you don't have to let them in! If Satan can get you discouraged, he can immobilize you. He knows your worth and He know WHO has made you worthy! He is afraid of you and the gifting God has placed inside of you.

Seek God and ask Him to show you who you are in HIS eyes! Look up scriptures on "Who I am in Christ". Listen to worship music and offer a sacrifice of praise for your spirit of heaviness! Put on the armor of God as described in Ephesians 6 and draw near to God. Pray more than you've ever prayed before! Guilt, condemnation, and failure canNOT stick around if you are submerged in the presence of God!

Insanity=
"doing what you've always done...
& expecting different results."


Make the choice TODAY to quit keeping the company of Condemnation, Guilt, and Failure. Instead, surround yourself with Grace, love, Forgiveness, and Peace...

January 30, 2010

SURPRISE!!! Guess who made it to heaven???

YOU are going to be sooooooooooo surprised when you enter the gates of heaven and see who is standing there to greet you!!!

Do you have a tally going of who is going to heaven and who isn't? If you are honest enough, at least with yourself, you will find that YOU DO have an formed opinion already of those who will be "good enough" to make it into heaven.

Christians call that "righteous Judgment" or "seeing the fruit of the Spirit" working out in someone's life! I mean, we as Christians, surely make it our duty to be "God" in someone else's life. We have been in this "walk" with Christ long enough to KNOW when someone has it together and when someone CLEARLY does NOT!!! Um...hang on with me here.

A little bit ago, I was thinking of Eric Clapton's song, "Tears in Heaven", and although I cannot recall the lyrics without looking them up, I felt God tug at my heart, almost as if to say,

"What if those were my tears?"


"Excuse me, God? And what does that mean?" I questioned my Loving Father.

"You know that person who can't seem to get his life together? The one that you have, so obviously, seemed to condemn to hell because he doesn't "fit" your mold of what a "Christian" should look like?" God gently convicted me.

God continued..."And what about that man who can't stay sober or clean for more than 24 hours??? What about the woman or man who can't stay faithful or even single because they feel like they need someone to live their life with them??? Do you remember those people? The people who hurt others so often because they hurt so much themselves?"

"Why, yes, of course God! How can I forget them?" I replied.

"Who gave YOU a right to judge what they should 'look like' or how 'together' they should have it? And further more, do you realize how it grieves my heart when YOU decide they are NOT my children because they do not look or act like you?"

"Um...they are Your children???" I questioned God.

"Yes, my sweet daughter...Just because you cannot see what I am doing in their hearts, does NOT mean that they haven't accepted my Son, Jesus, into their heart...

..."You will be surprised when you get to heaven and see all of my kids. People that you and others have decided are 'lost causes' or simply too 'bad' to ever get into heaven. To you, they look like they are covered in filthy sin because you are looking withYOUR eyes; to me, however, they are clean, pure, and spotless because I am looking at them through the blood of Jesus which has washed them white as snow...

..."With your eyes, you see drug addicts, alcoholics, porn addicts, murderers, conceited people, thiefs...but if you look at them through MY eyes, hmmm...you will see the beauty in them that I see! My glorious, gorgeous kids who simply have come to me...JUST AS THEY ARE. I believe, sweet daughter, I have received you just as you were/are...do I need to expose YOUR heart?...

..."Please let the rest of my kids know that I grieve and I cry tears of sorrow when they, too, judge others who don't "fit" their mold of a Christian. Let me be the Judge. You, Heaven Sparks, simply love on my kids! (Not just the ones who you think 'deserve it'). And remember...you, too, are saved by My Grace, and my grace alone!"

Love, Your Heavenly Papa God!


January 24, 2010

Pizza & WHINING!!!

For those of you who haven't been following my journey, God has been telling me for quite awhile that I need to get healthy.


That means not just looking at exercise videos,
but ACTUALLY doing them!



That also means that I can't keep eating
the same w
ay and expect to lose weight.I tend to be a "whiner"...
(and a big "whiner" at that!).


Let's not confuse that word with "WIN-NER",



but "WHINE-ER".


When God asks me to do something...
I...um...er...i tend to whine...and complain...and moan and groan...


What is that, you say? That was too small for you to read? Oh...well, I will try that again...
I WHINE...
I COMPLAIN...
I MOAN & GR
OAN...

...because I don't always want to do what
God asks me to do at first!

I know you may have never guessed that about me, but...yesiree, that would be me!

So..."get healthy" was the message for 2010! (Also, "Obedience" was the theme for my year! Hmmm...they totally go hand-in-hand. G
o figure!)

Yes...pizza! Oh, how I LOVED PIZZA!!! Before
my journey began on January 1st, pizza was my all-time favorite food. I could have pizza every day of the week, and never tire of it! BUT...I decided to stick to my proteins, low carbs, tantalizing salads, and good fruits. After all--- I was going to lose weight and get healthy.

Twenty-three days went by, and my taste buds were d
eprived of pizza...and I was o-kay with that. Until...I started looking at the ads and pizza coupons last night when I was toooooooooo tired to cook. The thought flickered across my mind and I let it linger until I picked up the phone, dialed the familiar telephone number, and ordered our favorite pizza for delivery.

"Hello, I would like to order 2 medium (thigh increasing) pizzas with extra (belly-roll fat) cheese, and an order of your delicious (hip & buns super expanders) breadsticks with extra (energy draining) sauce please....yes, for delivery (so I don't have to move off of the very comfy couch)...30 minutes? (totally enough time to think about the mouth watering pizza)....ok, thanks."


Right on time, the pizza arrived. I indulged bite after bite...after bite, until I-could-not-move! Oh, what had I done??? Not only would I have to endure through the agony of greasy pizza devouring my "once-again-grease-virgin-stomach". I would ALSO have to suffer through 10x through the already disliked "HipHopAbs" video I barely breathed through earlier in the day!!!

Instantly, I KNEW my stomach was NOT very fond of pizza anymore. I had spent 23 days training my body to love salads, fruit, veggies, and good meat, and suddenly, I wanted to vomit! Ugh...how could I NOT respond happily to my favorite food? (Um...er...now my ex-favorite food).

After my tummy settled a bit, I grew pleasantly surprised as God brought this verse to my mind:
"Everything is permissible-
but not everything is beneficial.
Everything is permissible-
but not everything is constructive.
1 Corinthians 10:23

God had changed in me what I NEVER thought was possible!!! My "want to's"...

My "longing" for those things that weren't nece
ssarily beneficial for me. Suddenly, I craved a healthy salad & a visit with my walking video...


What things are you "playing" with that are permissible (or not permissible), but are definitely NOT beneficial for you?

Do you desire a change? Do you want God to change your "want to's" and "taste buds" for those things that are not beneficial for you?

He can...AND He will...Just ask...& keep asking...because eventually...HE WILL!

January 23, 2010

Alcohol



"Don't always think that the people who "LOOK" like
they have it all together have no clue where you
are in life...because most of the time, those people
have walked th
e same path....
just in their own pair
of shoes!"

Heaven S
parks



"Everything is permissible"—
but not everything is beneficial.
"Everything is permissible"—
but not everythin
g is constructive.
1 Corinthians 10:23


I have meditated on this verse several times through my life concerning the things I have had to overcome, especially after God delivered me from my addiction to alcohol.


For ME, drinking alcohol is NOT an option!

Is it permissible? I believe so. Is it beneficial? For ME, absolutely NOT!

I LOVE the taste of alcohol...beer, whiskey, vodka...I truly do. There are many controversies regarding the consumption of alcohol as a Christian and I'm
not EVEN about to get into them on this post. For ME, because I love the taste of it, because of my past, and because I EVEN like the way it makes me feel, I CHOOSE NOT to drink it!

"Well, that doesn't really make sense! You like the taste of it...You like the feel of it...yet...you won't drink it???"

Yeppers! You heard that correctly:)

For ME, it is NOT beneficial! Alcohol turns me into a person that I once used to be, and I don't like to be that person. Well, don't get me wrong; it was fun being drunk! I had the self-esteem of a woman who cou
ld do anything. I could talk to anyone! I could dance anywhere with complete strangers! I was funny and rocked the house with Karaoke! When I was intoxicated, I liked being that person AT THE MOMENT! I love the high I got because alcohol made me feel more attractive and more confident!!!



Soooo...that is why I DON'T drink now...

Becaus
e I liked it!


Still doesn't make sense? I know.

That's what God does. After awhile of being in a relationship with Him, He changes you. Things that used to excite you and used to make sense in your life, don't seem to make sense anymore...yet it makes perfect sense...and it'
s ok...

About 4 years ago, I spent the night with some friends while we drank, played cards, and got high. I woke up the next day...sick to my stomach, had a headache from hell, two little boys who needed a mom
my who had an apparent hangover, full of regrets because I TOTALLY BLEW 4 years of sobriety and 10 years of being clean from drugs and I hated the reflection I saw in the mirror...

I remember going through that day with regrets and shame. I wanted so much to be who I WASN'T anymore, that I denied who I was...I believe I went another week (ha!) trying to get high and make myself "be" that person again (without guilt!), but...

... in the end...

...I was who I was...

Even as I tried convincing myself that I was still that same "party animal", I KNEW that I had said "good-bye" to that life years before...therefore, beginning the journey of trying to love the new woman I had become... started...

I am finally able to be a "dork" and have fun, and I don't have to have alcohol in my system to do it. I can write a song and sing it in front of an entire church with passion and everything in me...and without 1 drop of alcohol. I'm loved and liked MOST places I go, and I have gotten that response without being intoxicated. PLUS I can look at the reflection I see in the mirror without shame (and a hangover!)!!!

Hmmm....God is good!

January 21, 2010

Depression and withdrawal...

I lived in depression EVERY day of my life until recently (the past year or so)...

As a young girl, by the time I was 8 years old, I had been subjected to watching my alcoholic father severely beat my my mother & had already been sexually abused by two men. I'm guessing I wasn't a happy little girl back then. With those stats, I would have to say I've had depression at least 26/34 years that I have been alive!!!

I have learned over the past few months that when I need to evaluate myself (whether it be actions, attitudes, or heart motives), I tend to withdraw...BUT not like I am used to doing.

In the past, when I withdrew, it was because I couldn't stand being around other people. I NEEDED to be depressed. I NEEDED people to worry about me. I NEEDED to know that I mattered if I "fell off the face of the earth". I NEEDED to be the "pity party" for attention.

When I withdraw now, it is because I NEED to hear God speak to my heart loud and clear. I NEED to clear my mind of all of the distractions. I NEED to fill myself back up with God. I NEED to spend time seeking God's with scripture instead of seeking the voices of those I love and respect. I NEED to give the energy I have to my children before my friends. I NEED to let God revive, renew, and restore me. I NEED to bury myself in the Bible and teaching CDs and worship music. If I have exhausted all of what I've received from God, then I NEED to get filled back up so I can begin to give it all back out again.

The past couple days I have been dealing with some things. I REFUSE to give into depression. I REFUSE to surrender my destiny because of the devil's lies. I REFUSE to give up because things don't seem to be going as I hoped they would.

BUT...in order NOT to give into those things, I HAVE to surround myself with God, and God alone. Yes, there is a time to spend with people, and we NEED fellowship, but there is also a time when we have to get one-on-one with God.

God is always there waiting for us to talk to Him. WE ARE THE ONES who have to make the time to spend with Him. Do you know why I can post the things I do, or say the things I say with such passion and "knowing"??? Because I have spent time with God. I have gotten to know God's character by reading the Bible and because in the still, quiet moments, I allow myself to be "still" enough to listen, in my heart, for His direction and His encouragement, which ONLY He can give me.

I wouldn't have the strength and passion that I have if I did not spend this needed time with God! I wouldn't be able to encourage anyone with the words I write or speak if I didn't first saturate myself in the presence of God, my heavenly daddy.

So dear friends, I may seem depressed because of the withdrawal that you are used to seeing, BUT...I'm not. I'm just choosing to whine, groan, and complain to God first before picking up the phone to whine, groan, and complain to you. The funny thing is that by the time I'm done whining, groaning, and complaining to God, I'm already rejoicing, feeling hopeful, and ready to conquer the world again:) The great thing is that the speed of this "Training Camp" is increasing, so I'm getting lesson after lesson after lesson, one right after the next! So..... when I'm done whining to God, and feel like conquering the world...ha...another area that needs work "pops" up and I need to whine and complain and......all over again:)

So dear friend, even though it may seem as though I am depressed...I'm not. I'm just getting renewed and rejuvenated and rested so I can continue to do what I do best....love and encourage people:)

Got heavy shoulders???

As I've grown in my faith, I've learned that one of my gifts is Compassion. It's awesome to be able to encourage other people without giving it another thought. It was always the quality in my mother that I LOVED growing up! She was ALWAYS encouraging other people and ALWAYS had people at our house. I always prayed, "Lord, I don't want to be like my mom, BUT I want a heart like hers!"

If you have teenagers or ever WERE a teenager, then you know that praying a prayer like that is HUGE! At least it was for me, because even though I loved my mom, hello...I was a teenager and um...she was not cool...(at least then she wasn't!) (My friends always thought she was cool though!)

Well, over the years, I am grateful that God gave me the gift I admired most in my mother (and of course, the gift of cleaning & being organized!)

There are times when "caring about others" becomes burdensome. There are times when I get weary of "caring". There are times when the load gets toooooooooooooo hard to carry and I get exhausted from "caring" so much!

When I get overloaded with feeling other people's pain, I have to step back and re-evaluate the situation. Usually, I find that I am "carrying their burden" instead of laying the burden at the feet of Jesus and "caring for them". Then, I realize that I desire their freedom MORE than they desire it, and I realize I'm getting frustrated because I'm putting more prayer and "heart" into their life than they are.

Then....as if that weren't enough revelation...God shows me that I'M TRYING TO FIX the situation, instead of allowing God to fix the situation. Seriously God??? Yep.....

So, how do I know if I'm overloaded with someone else's problems?

1) Well, I feel it physically. I get tired easily. My body usually aches, with either headaches, or stiffness in my neck or shoulders. I then have to decipher: am I worrying about my problems or someone else's? Whatever it may be, I HAVE TO lay it at the feet of Jesus. My shoulders aren't strong enough to bear the weight of the world, whether it's my own issues or other people's issues. I then pray and intentionally BREATHE! I think when we are worried, we tend to hold our breath more, and we deprive ourselves of well-needed oxygen.

2) I'm thinking about this problem over and over and over, and over again! If I'm worried about someone else, I find myself thinking about them often and how they could just solve their situation if they would just ___________ (whatever it may be). If I'm worried about my own issues, that too, consumes my mind. We have to be conscious about what we are thinking about or our minds will spin and spin until we've found our thoughts spinning out of control.

3) I find myself resenting the person I'm "caring" about. I begin to resent the fact that they are choosing not to do what they need to. As I write this, I'm already finding anger rising up in me because I totally "see" the potential this person has, and if they would only_________, then they could overcome this trial in their life, and be able to walk in victory like God wants them too.

O-kay, so you get the idea.

Now...what to do about it!?!?!

It has taken me a couple days to realize what is going on in me, and now after figuring out that I am carrying too much on my shoulders, I need to do something about it. Well, I don't have to, BUT if I don't, then I am CHOOSING to remain irritated, depressed, and overwhelmed.

So, for me, I've had to first of all, PRAY, and PRAY some more. "Lord Jesus, You care about this person WAYYYYYYYYYY more than I do, and so I give You this situation and this person that I have "taken on" and have tried to "fix". I'm sorry for thinking "I" was big enough to "fix" it! I'm sorry for thinking "I" could make this person walk towards you. I give this burden to You, and pray that YOU intercede in this person's life! In Jesus' Name, Amen~"

Since I've done that, I haven't really felt any better, sooooooo...I have been in God's Word, meditating on scripture, listening to teaching CDs, speaking positively, constantly directing my thoughts away from "picking up that burden" again.

I STILL don't feel better after doing that....BUT I know that I know that I know that GOD'S WORD DOES NOT GO VOID! I KNOW that my feelings WILL EVENTUALLY line up with the Word of God! I KNOW that I canNOT live IN my emotions or BY my emotions or I will end up being depressed and worried and full of anxiety.

SO....I continue to pray...

I continue to speak scripture out loud....

I continue to seek God....

...and I continue to give back to God (over and over) my concerns for this person...

...AND I REST IN KNOWING THAT GOD IS ON THE THRONE & STILL IN CONTROL!!!

January 17, 2010

Roller Coaster...


I don't know about you, but this has been a hard week! Life was smooth-sailing, I felt like I was on top of the world, and little by little, I was getting side-swiped from every direction. And although this was a hard week, God was STILL here. He met me right where I was at and let me cry and moan and then helped me get back on my feet. When the next mudslide came, he let me cry and moan and AGAIN, helped me get back on my feet.

Jesus never promised us an easy life...

Jesus never told us we'd be without hardships...

Jesus never told us we would always be happy...

BUT...

He did promise to be our Rock! Our fortress! Perfect strength in our weakness! Our Shelter! Our comforter! Our guide! Our light! Our Hope! Our Joy!

He also promised that HE would NEVER leave us!!!

So............as this roller coaster continues to have ups and downs and twists and turns, I will put my seat belt on and stay firmly in my seat because Jesus Christ is the driver of this ride!


As I approach the top, I anticipate what's on the other side. With Jesus at the controls, I don't have to fear what I'm about to zoom into!


As I lose my stomach on the way down and feel like I am going to fly out of my seat, I hold my breath, tighten my grip, and go with the flow.


There are ups and downs of life, but through it all, Jesus Christ, as a firm foundation in my life, is the only thing that remains stable. Change is inevitable and expected...So why not hold onto the one thing that is never shaken on this roller-coaster-ride that we call life???

January 9, 2010

It's tooooo early!


I awoke at 5:30 this morning to arguing and loud wrestling in my living room. UGH!!! That does NOT make a good wake-up call, but makes a wonderful alarm clock (because I can't push snooze!). The problem is that I did NOT set my alarm, nor did I ask for a wake-up call.

After sending each child to their room for waking up everyone in the apartment building (ok, well me!), I began to stew and get angrier by the second!!! It is Saturday and I should be able to sleep in until AT LEAST 7:00, but Nooooooooooo, my boys didn't get that memo! I continued to ramble on to myself: "I am the mom and I do sooooo much for them and they can't even get along so I can sleep a little extra???? What about me? What about my rights? If only they had ANY clue how many times I have sacrificed sleep for them!!! Ugh..."

Well, that conversation within myself really didn't help my mood (or my level of gratitude!), and I KNEW THIS, but at that moment, I felt I had a right to complain...so I did!!! And I continued my little fit, (all within myself, of course), for another 5-10 minutes, and suddenly I felt a nudge at my heart. You know...the little voice that acts as your conscience... Yep, that one!.

Of course, because I must have been enjoying being miserable and complaining at that moment, I ignored it. "I don't want to be 'right'!, I don't want to be graceful! I don't even want to be nice! I don't want to think about anyone else but me right now! I'm tired! It's NOT fair!!!"

Ahhh...the lovely tantrums of a mature adult in an immature moment!

Ok, so you get the point. The nudge came again, and for me, that nudge happens to be God trying to get my attention. "Ok, fine. What do you want, God?"

Somedays, I totally picture that if I stood in front of God, He would look at me, with the same goofy grin I give others, and say, "Um...seriously, Heaven, really????"

This morning would have been one of those mornings! "Seriously, Heaven???" I suddenly felt as immature as I had acted, as I felt compelled to look in my Bible and take advantage of the NOW quiet moments at hand, since, of course, my boys were on a verrrryyyyyyy long time-out in their rooms.
Breathe in...breathe out...

I sat down, apologized to God for my attitude, and opened my Bible. I opened it to John 14 of all places! Well, to me, this chapter talks about love and obedience! Ugh...I knew where this was headed. The verse that popped out to me was John 14:15:

"IF you love me, YOU WILL obey what I command." ....Yes, that's it! If my kids loved me, they would totally obey me!!!

Um...another "Seriously Heaven?" moment came...

"If Heaven loves God, she will obey what He commands..." Seriously, God???? Do we have to go "there"? OUCH! OUCH! OUCH! It's too early and I don't want to be responsible this early! I just wanted to be childish and have my moment of "What about me???"

Ok, well, God has been showing me some ugly attitudes that I have still carried in my heart, and this verse totally just exposed my attitude and my sin. I had a bad attitude and felt the world revolved around me this morning.

"God, I'm sorry. Help me to become a better morning person!" THE END...or so I thought!
I suddenly ( I love suddenly moments!) saw this verse a little different...Not sure it's necessary an interpretation of it, but this is how I suddenly felt it in my heart.

"If Heaven simply KNEW how much I loved her (how much I desire her and have given up for her and adore her), THEN she would WANT to and WILLINGLY do what I have asked her to do..." *little baby "ouch"*

I "got it". It's totally NOT in the loving others that makes us want to be a better person...it's in the "knowing how much we are loved" that makes us WANT to be a better person...


So, this morning, I rest in God, who never complains because of what I do, say, or act. He simply takes me by the hand, nudges my heart, and gently shows me truth that leads me to repentance and helps me to know His love better.

I pray, that, you too, would be able to see how much God and those around you love you...

January 4, 2010

Motives...

May the words of my mouth
and the meditations of my heart
be pleasing in Your sight, O LORD,
my Rock and my Redeemer.
Psalm 19:14

Ah...I love this verse. It reminds me to check my actions and my heart attitudes, as well as my motives. I love the prospects that God has for me in 2010. He's promised to restore all those things that the enemy has stolen. It's so wonderful!

I'm also losing weight this year! Woo hoo! I'll finally be skinny, and pretty, and noticed, and...

My blog will touch many people, and my testimony will be heard, and God will make my name great, and...

My artwork is totally going to soar with God! I will FINALLY have something worthy enough to offer...

Music!!! I wrote and performed one song and now God is going to give me more songs, and people will actually be asking for me by name and...

HELLO???????????????????????

I'm sensing a "little" problem in my statements above. What about you???

It's so easy to get off track when we try to do things to glorify ourselves, instead of God! And it's even easier to "go there" and not realize you are camping right in the center of Camp Pride! Sometimes, it takes small whisper to get us back to a right heart attitude and other times, it takes tripping on a major stump to make us realize who we are trying to please.

I've had the "big stump" fall, and it was NOT fun at all! I want to be more aware of the nudges of God saying, "Um...Heaven...you might want to rethink that statement."

What is even more amazing is when I say "Yes, it is all because of God! The glory belongs to HIM! God, is soooooooooooooo great and is doing a great thing in me!", and not even realizing that I don't want to share the glory with God. I want it to myself! I want people to know how GREAT I am! And what I CAN do!

Yesterday, I "met" with God, and He showed me this in myself. The attitude that I wanted God to do these great things in and through me so that I would get noticed so that I would feel great about myself! Ouch!* Nothing like self-inflicted pain!!!

So, Jesus, once again, I pray that You would be glorified in all I do or say. That, as painful as it may be, that YOU would strip the wrong heart attitudes from me and plant the right ones in me. I truly am who I am because of who YOU ARE! I AM ALIVE because YOU LIVE IN ME! The only gifts I have are the ones that YOU PLACED IN ME! Lord, keep the words of my mouth and the meditations and motives of my heart pleasing to YOU! May I DAILY/every moment be aware of You and Your voice, that I may not trip on my prideful thoughts. Help me to lay them at the cross and leave them there! I thank You for still loving me and for not giving up on me! I welcome this journey of being humble before YOU! Please NEVER let me forget that I am who I am because of WHO YOU ARE!!! In Jesus' name, Amen~




January 1, 2010

New eyes

Last fall, the captain of the "Shame Train" took me for a ride down "Unworthiness valley", past "Get-out-of-ministry Highway", and at the feet of "You-will-never-change- you-are-a -failure Mountain". I made a stop at the "Seriously? You-are-stupid ocean" and wallowed there for awhile until I finally walked to the edge of the "You-are-doomed-forever Cliff".

I sat down and surveyed the scenery below me. It was dark, cold, and dreary... and I began to wonder if this was my punishment for everything I had done wrong. I'm not sure when, but Jesus whispered to my heart, "I never brought you here. You brought yourself here."

A light grew inside my heart and began to slowly invade and conquer the darkness that was trying to permanently reside there. Day by day, as I committed my heart and journey back to God, the light grew stronger and brighter, and eventually chased the darkness away.
As I daily fought the battle in my mind, God continued to bring truth to the lies I believed.

One Sunday, not long ago, I closed my eyes and began sobbing before the Lord. As I worshiped Him, I realized I was standing at the top of a mountain, looking at all of the wonderful things ahead of me. I could see!

In that moment, God birthed a new freedom inside of me...and a passion...and a fire under my feet...and a boldness from deep within...




Trusting God

My son has been pretty sick lately. Even though he's an adult, I still worry about him. I probably get annoying as I ask the same questi...