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Posts Tagged ‘Discovering Jesus’

It has almost a month since I posted on here. I ended up having to get a job. It wasn’t something I wanted to do and it is only a temporary solution to my income issue. In the Spring, other programs will be implemented in LIFE Single Mom Ministry and I will need to lead full-time. I trust in a God that gives us dreams and provides the miracles to make those dreams a reality.

It has been a transition. I try to NOT focus on work on my time off, because it tends to drain me. I also struggle with the dread of being outside of God’s will. I allowed fear and people to push me into getting a job, instead of waiting for the miracle. I am now in a constant state of anxiety and sorrow for my decision.

God still blesses us though! I received a $500.00 donation for the ministry from a church member yesterday! God continues to confirm that regardless of the opinions of some, there are others that believe in the ministry and believe in me.

I have also reached the point with a client that I didn’t want to reach. It is hard when you have to make the decision to let go. I hate it. I struggle with guilt and heartache over it, but at what point do we decide to put our own sanity and mental health first? There has to be a point where we choose not to be cussed at and raged against when trying to help. I’m still learning where to draw the line without cutting ties completely.

God is good! These last few weeks have been a struggle, but I continue on and do the work my Father gave me to do. I plan on going back to writing on a more regular schedule. I have to focus on God and NOT on my situation!

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I am trying to find a way to slow down time. It seems to be flying by so fast that I can’t find the time to enjoy the present. So, that is my goal. I need to enjoy each moment as it is. Which reminds me, I also have a tendency to worry about the future.

Matthew 6:25-34

25 “Therefore I tell you, do not worry about your life, what you will eat or drink; or about your body, what you will wear. Is not life more than food, and the body more than clothes? 26 Look at the birds of the air; they do not sow or reap or store away in barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not much more valuable than they? 27 Can any one of you by worrying add a single hour to your life?

28 “And why do you worry about clothes? See how the flowers of the field grow. They do not labor or spin. 29 Yet I tell you that not even Solomon in all his splendor was dressed like one of these. 30 If that is how God clothes the grass of the field, which is here today and tomorrow is thrown into the fire, will he not much more clothe you—you of little faith? 31 So do not worry, saying, ‘What shall we eat?’ or ‘What shall we drink?’ or ‘What shall we wear?’ 32 For the pagans run after all these things, and your heavenly Father knows that you need them. 33 But seek first his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well. 34 Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own.

I’m having a hard time enjoying one moment at a time and not worrying about tomorrow. I am challenging myself to take one moment at a time, focusing on the presence of God, and the blessings that He bestows upon me.

I have decided to take a job! The only job that I wanted when I moved back to Indiana was available and I went and got it on Friday! I will be a kennel technician at a local dog boarding/day play business. I LOVE animals and it is a full-time job that offers me a steady income while I run the single mom ministry. I am nervous after not working for 2 1/2 years, but it will be okay. I will NOT worry about tomorrow! I WILL focus on God!

Speaking of the ministry, the LIFE group is not growing as I would have liked, but all in God’s timing. I am planning a book study for January, just trying to figure out the book. I was thinking of something on prayer or something different like Janine Turner’s “Holding Her Head High: Inspirations from 12 Single Mothers Who Championed Their Children and Changed History” I have also decided to partner with a local church in their large community garden in the Spring.

And if that wasn’t enough, I am also making jewelry to sell as a side hustle.

It means taking time to smell the roses and enjoying each moment as it comes. Easier said than done! In the mean time, I am asking for your prayers as I navigate the transition back to a full-time job and doing everything else that I need to do. God is good and has blessed me abundantly!

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Time flies! I didn’t realize that it had been 3 weeks since I had posted one of these. So, how have I discovered Jesus lately?

I sense the presence of Jesus in everything that I do. I know that He is the one that opens the doors as I start LIFE Single Mom Ministry. I know that He is the one that gives me the courage to obey and step out of my comfort zone. I know that He is the one who provides for me as I serve single moms.

Exodus 33:14

14 The Lord replied, “My Presence will go with you, and I will give you rest.”

The presence of Jesus can be a reality in our lives if we choose to focus on Him and not our circumstances. When the Lord of Lords tells us that His presence will go with us, that is a promise that you can count on.

He will walk with you into court to fight for custody of your kids, face an abuser, end a marriage, or face the consequences of bad decisions.

He will comfort you when you lose a loved one and you feel alone.

He will pick up the shattered pieces of a house fire, a loss of employment, or a broken relationship.

He is with us ALWAYS!

Not only is He with us, He WILL GIVE US REST!

He will give us rest from the worry over adult children who are far from the Lord.

He will give us rest from the anxiety of waiting for those test results.

He will give us rest from the guilt of causing pain to those we love.

He will give us rest from the feeling of emptiness that comes with living a life without Him.

I challenge you today to focus on Jesus. Focus on the presence of the Lord of Lords. Remember the rest that comes from a life lived in Him.

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1 Thessalonians 5:16-18

16 Rejoice always, 17 pray continually, 18 give thanks in all circumstances; for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus.

We have been studying the book of Job in my Sunday School class. When I read 1 Thessalonians 5:16-18 and think about my life, I know that I have not suffered anything that compares to what Job suffered. In chapter 2 verse 5, Job asks his wife, “shall we accept good from God and not trouble?” In John 16:33, Jesus tells us that in this world we WILL have trouble.

THE GOOD NEWS:

In John 16:33, Jesus also tells us to TAKE HEART! HE (Jesus) has overcome the world.

We have all felt pain and heartache in our lives. We all suffer at some point. No one is free from the pain and chaos of this world. BUT we CAN REJOICE! We CAN GIVE THANKS IN ALL CIRCUMSTANCES! We CAN TAKE HEART! This world is temporary. Our worldly trials are temporary. JESUS IS FOREVER! Hebrews 13:8 tells us that Jesus is the same yesterday, today and forever. Deuteronomy 31:6 tells us that God will neither leave us nor forsake us.

I will admit that I have not always rejoiced or given thanks when life throws me a curve ball. I can grumble, complain and whine like a two year old and expect God to fix everything RIGHT NOW!

My goal is to live out 1 Thessalonians 16-18 in my life, no matter what. I will bury John 16:33 in my heart for those times. I can REJOICE ALWAYS and GIVE THANKS IN ALL CIRCUMSTANCES because my Savior JESUS HAS OVERCOME THE WORLD and HE WILL NEVER LEAVE ME NOR FORSAKE ME.

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Wow! It has been a month since I posted an update! It has been a busy Summer and I can’t believe Fall is just around the corner!

On the personal front

We had our granddaughter Lily visit for about 6 weeks from Florida in June and July. It was really nice to be able to get to spend an extended amount of time with her.

We had our niece with us for about a month in July after she had a fire at her house.

My parents were here for a week in mid-August from California. They had not been here for 3 years and they drive. California to Indiana is a long drive for anyone, but these 2 adventurers are in their mid-seventies! It was a bitter sweet visit as they announced that due to my dad’s health issues they would not be able to make it back. That means that God willing we will have to make it there. I have not been home since 1994. I trust God to make it happen.

On the ministry front

I have been busy getting the word out about the Single Mom LIFE Group. Speaking of the LIFE Group, we had our first meeting this past Wednesday and 3 single moms attended! I was super excited to have them and it went well! I am also blessed to have my daughter, Cree, co-facilitating with me. She is Aaron to my Moses. That speech that Moses gave God about not being eloquent, yep that’s me! I am a socially awkward, social anxiety ridden introvert who would rather hide from the people. HA! Such a sense of humor God has! Moses and I are often the types of people that God chooses to put up in the front. Thank God for the Aaron’s and the Cree’s of this world who speak well and are the social butterflies of society.

WBGL’s Single Mom Saturday is coming up on September 25th!

Tami, Cree, and I also have a craft fair that weekend! So I need to leave off here and get to crafting…

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I have been reflecting on how quickly the Summer is flying by. In the blink of an eye the Summer (the year) is gone and it leaves me asking myself, “what have I done that made a difference?” “Have I loved someone to Jesus?” “Have I done anything that really matters?” “Have I lived to glorify God’s name?”

It seems to be true that the older you get the faster the years fly by. I feel it as I have turned 51 and I can’t seem to find the time to even breathe. To just be able to put the brakes on a little and slow the clock would be great, but that’s not how things work. So what can we do when we become so overwhelmed by life that you become physically exhausted?

Focus on God– Take your eyes off of the world and put them on God. Allow Him to fill your heart and spirit with the peace that surpasses all understanding. He controls it all! Even the devil has to ask His permission before he acts. When we focus on our circumstances we will become overwhelmed and stressed out. When we focus on God and put our trust in Him we will find that our circumstances do not control us.

Live in the Present– We can not change the past so fretting over what was is futile. The same can be said for worrying about the future. Things happen that we can not control. Worry only makes us sick and unable to handle difficult situations calmly. We need to live in the present. We need to focus only on what is happening now and know that God is with us.

Choose to Love– We can choose to live life with a bad attitude sulking over every negative thing that has happened to us or we can choose to love others despite the pain we have lived through. Even when we feel attacked by the devil we can still choose to love those around us. God often calls us to love those that may seem unlovable. He expects us to love those who maybe a bit prickly. It may seem like an impossible task, but I remind myself that God still loves me when I am acting prickly and less than my lovable self. If everyone would let go of our own agendas and choose to love selflessly this world would be a better place.

I fully acknowledge that I can’t stop the clock and at 51 I am not getting any younger. All I can do is choose to live each day for Christ. I can focus on God and choose to surrender all circumstances to Him. I can choose to love those around me. I choose to make the most of the years I have left. I will live wholly for God.

I will choose to love

I will choose Jesus

I will choose God

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Yesterday America celebrated our Independence Day and there was no better way to celebrate it than by going to church. In the sermon, Pastor John, reminded us that as Christians we celebrate an Independence that is even more important than the independence that we celebrate as a nation.

When Jesus died on the cross, He freed us from a certain death and eternity in Hell. When He shed His blood for us, Jesus gave us freedom from sin, IF we will confess, repent and transform our lives through Him.

There is no freedom if you don’t have Jesus! Even when life gets chaotic and horrible things happen in the world, I still have a certain peace knowing that God is still present, God is still working in the mess, and lives can be transformed in the storm. I know that I can be joyful always because I am saved by the blood of Jesus and I WILL be in the presence of my Messiah one day. No matter what happens on this earth, I can look forward to an eternal life in heaven and that is only because of the sacrifice that Jesus made on the cross for us. He CHOSE to die for us! You better believe that it was a choice that Jesus made. He did not have to obey the Father. He had free will just as we do, but He CHOSE LOVE. He chose to overlook the hate of those who were beating Him. He chose to love those who killed Him. He forgave those who would trample upon the lives of others.

JESUS CHOSE LOVE!!!

He had every right to turn His back on humanity. God had every right to change His mind and let us all burn in Hell. But, He did not turn His back or change His mind. HE CHOSE LOVE!!!

CHALLENGE:

When someone comes against you, choose love instead of hate. When someone causes you pain, choose love instead of revenge. When someone beats you down physically, emotionally, mentally or verbally choose to love them instead of living a life of anger, bitterness, and unforgiveness. It never does any good to wallow in anger and hurt. Jesus didn’t wallow. He CHOSE to love those who hung Him on the cross to die a horrible horrible death. Choose to forgive. Choose to pray for your enemies as Jesus did.

CHOOSE LOVE!!!

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I celebrated my 51st birthday on Tuesday. I have always loved my birthday, but this years lack of fanfare left me feeling forgotten. Don’t get me wrong, all 5 of my kids acknowledged my birthday, but I’m still not sure if it was simply out of obligation. No presents and I am planning my own birthday dinner for Monday night when my daughter, Cree and her husband get back from California. I was disappointed, to say the least. I have had other years like this and it never really bothered me before. I guess the difference is that this year my kids are adults with lives of their own. They are supposed to move into their own lives and be productive members of society.

BUT THEY AREN’T SUPPOSED TO FORGET THEIR PARENTS!!!

At least that is my opinion. Before you think that I am throwing my kids under the bus, the Holy Spirit used my pity party to convict me of my own relationship with my parents and asked me a very disturbing question, “What do you do for your parents?” Yep! I was quickly humbled and had to admit that I haven’t done near enough to celebrate my parent’s birthdays or their wedding anniversaries. In my defense, my parents live in California and I live in Indiana, but there is no excuse for the many years when I didn’t send a card much less acknowledge their birthdays. The last few years I have sent a card and sometimes a gift card for a restaurant that they like, but honestly I have not done near enough. My parents are in their mid 70’s and have been married for 52 years. I need to do more for my own parents. I need to set the example.

I also need to remember that the world does NOT revolve around me. They have their own lives. They have or will be creating their own families. As much as it hurts, I have to remember that this is all a good thing. I realize that it hurts because I lived on my own with the kids for many years. In a way it seems like I am losing them and that I will be alone. I guess that’s why the lack of fanfare for my birthday really hurt me this year. It’s a transition and transitions can cause discomfort and even some emotional pain.

SO WHAT WILL I DO WITH ALL OF THIS?

I’m definitely NOT going to wallow in it! I will enjoy my belated dinner Monday night and accept the little gifts of love that my kids do give all year round. I will enjoy being a part of my grandkids lives and watching them grow in their own relationships with God. Ava, who will be 8 on Sunday has talked to our church Children’s Director about being baptized! THIS is what I get to be a part of EVERY DAY! I am building a single mom ministry and a single mom community as well. I am now part of a loving church. I am reaching out to community agencies and have had wonderful responses from several of them. I will be reaching out to other local churches in the near future and as I reach out I know that my own community/support system will grow. What do you do as a single mom when your kids grow up and leave you behind? You find that one thing that you are passionate about and create a community around that. You reach out and create a new you. You do what you had been putting off for years. You quit feeling sorry for yourself.

I love my kids abundantly and I am so proud of who they are and are becoming. My intention is never to make them feel guilty for growing up. This is about my having to deal with emotions. We CAN control our emotions. We CAN control how we feel. If we focus on God and allow His Spirit to abide in us.

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1 Philippians 1:6

being confident of this, that he who began a good work in you will carry it on to completion until the day of Jesus Christ.

I have been seeing this verse quite a bit lately and it popped up again in the children’s sermon at church this morning. Is God trying to tell me something?

I love this verse! Any time I get overwhelmed or discouraged by the amount of work I need to do I remember that God will finish what He started. Any time I get worried or anxious about my financial situation I remember that God will provide and equip me to do the work that He has called me too.

I am turning 51 tomorrow and I start to wonder if it’s to late. But then I remember that I am more equipped now having been through the fire of single motherhood. My faith has grown so much through the last few years as I learned about God and really started to lean on God.

This verse says that I can be confident that God will finish the good work that He started in me. The definition of confident is having a feeling or belief that you can do something well or succeed at something, being certain of your abilities, or having trust in people, plans, or the future. I know that I won’t succeed on my own. I do, however, trust in God to give me the ability to succeed. I am CONFIDENT in God!

Luke 1:45

Blessed is she who has believed that the Lord would fulfill his promises to her!

When God says that He will complete the good work that He has begun in me, I BELIEVE IT! I believe that He WILL fulfill His promises to me. He is a good and faithful God. I trust in Him and Him alone. To emphasize His point yesterday, we sang the Lion and the Lamb. The one phrase that keeps repeating itself in my mind is, “who can stop the Lord Almighty?” No one can stop the Lord from completing His will. NO ONE!

I love receiving lessons from the Lord. He speaks to us in ways that encourage and motivate us. It’s in the quiet whispers of a sermon or a song or a Bible scripture that He speaks to us. My heart is open. Is yours?

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My daughter, Kiowa, gave me two devotionals, PRAY LIKE THIS: A 52-Week Prayer Journal and Trusting God day by day, by Joyce Meyer. I have spent the last two weeks devouring every scripture and every word, every day! It was definitely a gift from God because they have intertwined so much! They also have touched me right where I am right now.

Philippians 4:6-7

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

Romans 12:12

Be joyful in hope, patient in affliction, faithful in prayer

Psalm 34:4

I sought the Lord, and he answered me; he delivered me from all my fears.

1 John 5:14-15

14 This is the confidence we have in approaching God: that if we ask anything according to his will, he hears us. 15 And if we know that he hears us – whatever we ask – we know that we have what we asked of him.

Philippians 4:13

I can do all things through Christ who gives me strength.

Matthew 6:34

Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself. Each day has enough trouble of it’s own.

Mark 10:27

Jesus looked at them and said, “with man this is impossible, but not with God; all things are possible with God.”

Matthew 6:27

Can anyone of you by worrying add a single hour to your life?

1 Peter 5:7

Cast all your anxiety on him because he cares for you.

2 Timothy 1:7

For the spirit God gave us does not make us timid, but gives us power, love and self-discipline.

It never ceases to amaze me how God uses His Word (the Holy Bible) to speak to us. The Bible is the LIVING Word of God and it breathes life into us. God speaks to me about prayer and worry. He reminds me that I CAN control my thoughts. I CAN renew my mind. I CAN CHOOSE to focus my thoughts on Him and not on the negative things going on around me. We need God’s Word. We need the Bible and sometimes God sends us devotionals to bring out the life of those words.

It was a gift that spoke to my soul and has lifted me up. Kiowa didn’t know how her gift would impact me, but God did. I love how He does that!

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