Jesus is more than a name…

Jesus is: my Redeemer, my Savior, my Healer, my Defender, my Protector, my Lord, my Helper…He is all I need!!

I came across this while down in Sedona, AZ and had to take a picture because He does live!! He is in Heaven right now, sitting at the right hand of The Father and He has shown me that He is all I need -I need only to believe and trust Him!!

  

Thank you Jesus for all that you have done for me, are doing for me and will do for me in the future!! I lift my life up to You in complete trust. I am blessed beyond belief and so greatful of the mercy and grace You show me. You have worked everything out according to Your plan. You have shown how you can change minds and hearts and place Your favor on my life and my path. You are so much more than a name to me – you are the reason!! Thank You Jesus!!

Beyond Blessed…

What a week this has been, wow! I’ve been in Arizona this week making arrangements for our move here soon. This whole move has been a lesson of trusting and walking by faith and not by sight. My husband and I have given notices to employers before having new jobs lined up. We’ve made arrangements for moving without even having a new house lined up to move into. The list goes on. We’ve just trusted that the Lord would provide every step of the way. He has shown us this week just how much we can in fact trust Him. I came to Surprise, AZ this week with an impossible task – to find a house to rent in one week with no jobs lined up yet and no real way of assuring a potential landlord that we would in fact be able to pay our rent. We knew that this was something that we were supposed to be doing so I came to AZ with nothing but my trust that the Lord would provide and He did! I found the perfect house, exactly what our family had been wanting down to every last detail. The amazing part of this story is the fact that another couple looked at it right before us, was willing to take it right away and they both had stable jobs in the area already, but…the owner chose us and we got the lease!!! Here’s the other cool part to this story – I had an appt. set up with a realtor to show me three properties this Monday morning and when Monday rolls around and we get to town, she couldn’t get in touch with the listing agent for any of those three she was supposed to show me so we weren’t able to see any of them. After finding this out, I confirmed my trust in the Lord and decided to start looking for some other properties to check out. Out of the blue, I get a call from the owner of the property I ended up renting to say he had just happened to run across my voicemail from last week and realized he never got back to me. It just so happened, right?!? We trusted and the Lord provided!!! His presence has been so strong with me this week.  It also “just so happened” that the job I’ve been waiting to hear back on called me for an interview and so I was also able to do that while I was in the area this week. God is so GREAT!!!! All we need to do is trust in Him. An impossible task? With Him there is NOTHING that is impossible!! I am beyond blessed…

Thank you Lord for the grace and peace you have given me throughout this whole process. Thank you for the courage to step out in faith and truly trust you with our lives. Thank you for providing everything we need at exactly the right time that we need it. Thank you that there are no coincidences – only you placing your favor on our lives and loving your children. 

A gift from my Heavenly Father

I had an absolutely surreal experience on my drive home last Saturday that I just have to share. I was spending some time with the Lord just thanking Him for everything that He is doing in my life right now when something really awesome happened.  You see, I was still suffering from some old emotions and baggage that I was carrying with me from when I was overweight. Even though I had been able to let go of a lot of my old thoughts of being worthless and not being good enough for anything or for anyone, I was still carrying some of those with me. These unexplainable waves of emotion just started falling over me. He told me that despite all the feelings I’ve had in the past, I do have worth. He told me that I’m needed, I’m loved, I’m valuable, that He has a purpose for me and that I AM His child! I could literally almost feel myself wrapped up in the biggest hug ever.

Thank you Father for breaking down those walls and old mindsets that hold me back from becoming the person you intended me to be. Thank you for showing me that through my faith in Christ, I am reborn – the old me has gone away. Thank you for reminding me that I am your child – a child of the one true King!

Psalm 136:26 Give thanks to the God of heaven, for his steadfast love endures forever.

Galatians 3:26 For you are all children of God through faith in Christ Jesus.

Looking for God’s Touch

For those of us that are believers, we’re all looking for God’s touch – how He’s working in our lives, how He’s there to pick up the pieces as they start falling down. So why does His touch seem to be more evident for some people than others? Why is it so clear how and when He’s working in some people’s lives and not for others? You may be waiting around wondering when and how God is going to show up for you in your life but He IS working on everything, in each one of our lives. Even when we don’t feel His presence with us, He’s there. How amazing for us that He IS always there!

God has shown up in my life in a very big way, His work in me is very evident by not only the physical transformation but also the spiritual transformation I have undergone. His plan for my life has and is starting to become clear to me but it wasn’t always that way. Although I believed in God and believed Jesus to be my Savior, I did not feel His presence in my life. It wasn’t until I reached out to Him and called on Him for His help in my life that I started to become aware of His presence and He started to become “real” to me. I understand now that He had always been there, at work in my life but it didn’t become evident to me until I put my faith and trust in Him. Sometimes it’s hard to see the sunlight through the trees, but just because you can’t see it doesn’t mean that it’s not there. He IS there – He always has been and always will be. For us believers, He is the one constant that we can count on in our lives. If you don’t feel His presence in your life like you see Him have in others, there is a reason for that. He is working out every detail behind the scenes and one day in His time, it will be revealed to you. Until then…just trust. Read His word! Seek Him! Have patience and just trust. When the time is right – all the pieces will come together, the sunlight will break through and it will all become clear. Just trust.

Dear Father,

Thank you for the light you have given me so that I may be a light to others! Thank you for revealing yourself to me, for making your presence known in my life. This light that you have given me exists to glorify you and show others of your mercy and grace.

Today I pray for each of your children that you have called and who seek your face but have yet to feel your loving touch. Lord, give each of them your peace…the peace that passes all understanding. Give them a glimpse of their life to come when they are in closer relationship with you. Reveal yourself to them so that they too can glorify you. Fill them with your light so that they can also shine brightly and be a light to others. Father, help them to reach out to you. Help them to get out of their comfort zones and step out of their boxes to reach for YOU…not a specific church, not a specific “religion” but YOU.

In Jesus’ name, Amen.

Leaving Him some room to work…

Our great God is absolutely amazing! I am so overcome with a feeling of peace right now that I just had to share it with you. So for those of you that have not been following my blog – me and my family are planning a move to Arizona. I’ve been applying for jobs in Phoenix since this past June and have not yet found “the one”. I had recently applied for one that I thought (okay, I hoped) was the one. I found out last week that I did not get that job. I wasn’t upset about it because I know that the Lord has the right one in mind for me and that obviously wasn’t it. The Sunday before I found out about not getting this job, the sermon at church was about how you have to give God some room to work in your life – if you try to have full control of everything, you’re not leaving Him any room. I felt like that sermon had my name written all over it; it sure hit home. I realized that this is exactly what I had been doing the past few weeks – trying to stay in control. I wasn’t consistently leaving Him room to work in my life because I was trying to go about things in my own ways. I have the proactive, planning, take control kind of personality and my human nature gets in the way sometimes. I guess you could say I’ve been gently reminded that I am NOT the one in control and everything WILL turn out the way it’s supposed to if I let go of the control freak nature and give Him some room to work. So I took a step back (again!), I lifted up all my doubts and worries to Him and re-confirmed my trust in Him. I’m still unsure of when all the pieces are going to come together but I have hope that they will. I have been filled with such an overwhelming peace, a peace that could only come from Him. My Lord has a perfect plan for me – I need only be patient and wait for it to be revealed.

Romans 15:13 “May God, the source of hope, fill you with joy and peace through your faith in Him. Then you will overflow with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit.”

John 14:27 “I’m leaving you peace. I’m giving you my peace. I don’t give you the kind of peace that the world gives. So don’t be troubled or cowardly.”

Thank you Jesus for always leading me back to the path when I start to wander. You are faithful God, forever.

He is worthy of our trust!

I just can’t imagine (knowing what I know now) walking through life without the Lord by my side. I can walk in a complete stride of trust. I used to be a worrier – a big time worrier! Now, I’m the one with a sense of peace and others are worrying around me. My personal relationship with Him has grown so much and He has show me that He CAN be trusted. Right now He is faithfully working out all the details for everything in my life. Even with something as big as an upcoming move across the country, finding jobs, finding a good neighborhood and good schools for our girls, I am completely at peace and am able to put trust in Him and He is blessing me for that in return. Every situation that I put my trust in Him and give up control of, He confirms that He is with me and is trustworthy. He never lets me down.

So here’s my latest example: When we had decided to move to Arizona, one of the things that I started looking into was some of the after-school child care programs available knowing that if I (and probably my husband too) was going to commute to Phoenix each day, that the girls would need some kind of after-school program. Not to mention something for the morning as well. After seeing the costs for it and the fact that the hours still probably wouldn’t fully accommodate a full work day plus commute time, I knew that I just couldn’t worry about it and handed it over to the Lord knowing that when the time comes, he would provide for that too. So I was visiting with my mom this past weekend and she (without me having shared my concerns on this topic) says that the Lord gave her the word nanny after she had been praying about what she is supposed to do in Arizona (she’s been planning on retiring and moving back down there with us). She said that the only thing that keeps coming to mind when she thinks about what she is supposed to be doing down there after retiring is to help out with the kids. At this point, I share the fact that I had previously had concerns about what to do with the kids with being gone extended hours but had just trusted that the Lord would take care of it at the time. Wow, what a great moment as we realize that He has just answered prayers for both of us!!

Our God is so great and wants to help us in every way possible – we need only to let Him. Tell Him your problems, your worries, your fears and ask for His help. Nothing is too big for the Creator of all to handle. Invite Him along on your daily walk in life – you will be amazed how He shows up!

Psalms 9:10 “And they that know your name will put their trust in you; for you, Lord, have not forsaken them that seek you.”

Thank you Lord Jesus for being the foundation that I can build my life upon. You are the everlasting light for my path.

I trust you Lord…

“Whatever God is urging you to clear away cannot begin to be compared to what He ultimately wants to bring you.
-Beth Moore

This quote really speaks to me. As I prepare to open a new chapter of my life, I can’t help thinking of the things that will no longer be included on the next page.

I trust you Lord that the things you are urging me to clear away from this last chapter cannot begin to compare to the things that are coming in the next. You always reward great faith with wonderful blessings!

1 Corinthians 12:31- “But I shall show you a still more excellent way.”

I am redeemed!

Redeem: to gain or regain possession of (something) in exchange for payment.

I have been physically and spiritually transformed; I am no longer the person I used to be. What did I gain possession of? Freedom! Freedom from the physical weight. Freedom from the sins I had committed. Freedom from the negative thoughts I had about myself. Freedom from the guilt I carried around. Freedom from the shame I felt. So what was the payment that I had to pay for this freedom? That’s the really awesome part –the only thing God asks us to do is to bring it to the cross. We have freedom because of His son Jesus Christ. We have freedom because of His death on that cross. I gained complete freedom the very moment that I brought it all to Him; brought it all to the cross.

The enemy never gives up though; he is always trying to tempt me back to sin. I have found that he tries to use those same things that used to be “hooks” to hook me back into sinful behavior. I found myself starting to allow my old hook (food) to take up residence in my life again. It wasn’t that I was overeating again but I was allowing cravings to take up thoughts that no longer belonged.

Last Sunday at church the sermon was on “What The Bible says about footholds and strongholds.” Our pastor talked about how sin can take a foothold in our lives and if it is not stopped, it can become a stronghold that gets harder and harder to break away from. There was a cross down in the front and at the end of the sermon, he invited anyone that had something in their life that had either a foothold or a stronghold over them to write it down on a piece of paper and come down and literally nail it to the cross. I had to admit to myself that I had allowed a foothold back in my life. After I went down and symbolically nailed my foothold to the cross, I literally brought it to the cross and asked the Lord to remove those cravings. Later that day, The Lord blessed me and reminded me that I AM free. The chains HAVE been broken. I AM NO LONGER THE PERSON I USED TO BE! The enemy no longer has control over me or my thoughts. He HAS BEEN defeated! When the enemy tries to remind me of my prior faults and accuse me of the things I was once guilty for, I need only to think of nailing it to the cross because I am redeemed.

I AM redeemed! (And the cravings are gone again – yay!!)

Think about this for a second – do you have something that is out of control in your life? Is there something that controls you more than you control it? Thoughts, negative emotions, substances? If something just came to mind, you have something that has a foothold or stronghold over you! Ask for freedom from the only one that is able to grant it to you – bring it to the cross of Jesus Christ!

I know there are some out there that do not believe all of it – God, Jesus…the whole thing. Let me leave you with something. Here are before and after pictures of me. These are not before and after weight loss pictures – these are before and after REDEMPTION pictures! The physical transformation is merely an external indicator of the spiritual transformation that has changed my life. God has changed MY life! His son Jesus has changed MY life! What will you let Him do for you?

photo 1

photo 3

Thank you Jesus for the redeeming power of the cross! Thank you!!