Lately I have been trying to find a balance in my life. Between work, being a wife, mother, working in the ministry and now seminary I have found that my life can be very hectic. So I am learning to make God my priority and everything else will line up.
So many time we do things backwards we put everything ahead of God and then we wonder why our lives are spinning out if control and it’s not that activities are bad they are just out of place. But Jesus gave us a way out of the madness he said come to me all who labor and are heavy laden and He will give us rest. Then He tells us to seek ye first the kingdom of heaven and all other things shall be added to you.
You see the missing principle is putting God first. God wants to the center of attention in our lives not obligations. I am not saying not to have things to do but I am saying that if we learn to put God first He will give us the grace to handle everything else.
So if your spinning out of control with all of your activities and obligations make God your priority, make time for Him and everything else will fall into place.
I have sincerely missed you guys. It has been awhile since I have blogged but I am trying to get back on track. I have started a new journey and it has taken a lot of my time, in August I started seminary at Liberty University. I wanted to write you and let you know what was going on with me but seminary has a lot of papers and reading and time would not allow for me to blog. But I am trying to get a system down so I won’t miss communicating with you all and sharing what God has laid upon my heart to share. GraceDays is my baby and I believe that God has blessed this ministry to encourage people in their time of need.
So with that said I will be back every Monday for GraceDays Monday’s. So get ready to go on this journey with me as God gives me GRACE in balancing family, seminary, work, and ministry.
Thus says the Lord, “The people who survived the sword found grace in the wilderness. Israel, when I went to give him rest.” Jeremiah 31:2
Yesterday I was talking with a friend of mine, he was telling me about the revelation that God had given him about the above verse and he had begun studying it more and was going to teach this text to his congregation for Sunday. When I looked at it I had a WOW moment, yes I do that a lot when something is so good to me (spiritually) it just WOWs me how God shows himself in such simply ways. So I decided to write to you about what I saw and give you a little encouragement for this week.
For weeks now we have seen, heard what has been going on in our world. You cannot escape the bad news from wars in Russia, Ukraine, Israel and now Iraq again. The border situation where young kids are trying to escape drug and gang infested communities to find safety in the United States and to the recent shooting of the young man in Missouri. Not to mention your own private wilderness that you are experiencing personally, that is so intimate that the world does not know but yet it affects you even the more. We all have our wilderness to go through and it may seem overwhelming and that it will not end but I just want to encourage you that as God was with Israel in their wilderness He is with you and you also will find grace in the wilderness.
As my friend Elder Echols shared with me, in the wilderness we see God do miraculous things. Look at what God did the children of Israel in the wilderness but God took care of them, He gave them water from a rock, fed them manna, the very clothes they had on did not wear out. God sustained them in their dry place. He showed them favor (GRACE) in the wilderness. Look even though they murmured and complained and they even wanted to go back to Egypt God still provided for them and kept them safe. Look at this even though they went through the wilderness God’s promise did not change. It took them longer to get there but they got there.
So I want to encourage you that yes you may be going through a wilderness season, you may feel that it won’t end and there is no hope that God will GRACE you in this season. His promise to you has not changed you are going to make it. Keep the faith and know that God will never allow you to go to a place that your faith can not sustain you. The same way that God kept Israel he will keep you. I know that things look grim in this world but just know none of this has taken God by surprised, He is still in control. People of God continue to pray and keep the faith no matter what you are going through God will and is GRACING you at this very moment to make it.
Remember you are not alone God is with you in this season.
Grace to make it,
Have you ever felt alone and rejected? Like no one gets you or even want to understand you. Sometimes I feel alone and rejected on this journey called life. I went through rejection, I feel all of my teenaged and adult life for reasons I cannot explain and because I have felt the sting of rejection I have built this huge wall of protection around me. I am like a fortified city within myself because rejection hurts and I refuse to set myself up for pain and relational failure. This morning during my devotion time I was reading Psalms 118 verse 22 and it prompted me to write this blog it reads “the stone which the builders rejected has become the chief cornerstone., vs 23 this was the Lord’s doing it is marvelous in our eyes”. WOW I had a tadah moment when I read it the word REJECTION stuck out like a sore thumb because this verse is talking about JESUS being REJECTED, yes I said it JESUS felt the sting of rejection, he experienced the hurt of not being liked, or accepted. Jesus experienced being talked about, lied on and alienated by people who are suppose to love you.
But look at what is interesting in this scripture “THIS WAS THE LORD’S DOING” Jesus rejection was all apart of God’s master plan of salvation. Jesus had to be rejected in order for him to get to the cross, had they loved him, accepted him he would not had endured the cross. The cross had to take place in order for us to saved. The bible tells us that Jesus experienced everything that we would ever experience but he did not sin. Everything we would ever suffer Jesus suffered it first. Let’s look at Jesus example to learn how to handle rejection. Jesus healed the sick, clothed the poor, preached the gospel of love to a people who did not receive him fully, they looked at him simply as Joseph the carpenter son and nothing more. The sought to kill him but Jesus sought to love them unconditionally. Instead of building a wall of protection Jesus vowed to love those who hated and persecuted him even on the cross Jesus asked the Father to forgive those who had done this devilish deed because “they know not of what they do”. He blamed there deed on ignorance instead of hatred.
So what do we learn from Jesus? If Jesus was rejected do not expect any different in your own life. People will not always love or treat you right, but your response to their actions is critical to your happiness. Your response should be LOVE, yes you got it LOVE. Jesus loved this world even when the world did not love HIM, it was apart of the plan. So do not be surprised when someone rejects you, it is a part of the plan, everyone will not go with you and for where God is taking you they would probably be more of a hindrance than a help so bid them farewell and safe travels and thank God for shielding you from what could have been a disaster. The next lesson you need to learn from Jesus’ rejection was that he knew who he was and his purpose. When you know who you are in God and the purpose that he has for you rejection will not bother you. We are the children of the most high God, we are peculiar adopted kids into the kingdom, our daddy is God over the universe. When your father is the most powerful person in the world you can’t help but be secure in Him. Rest in who God has made you, he created you in His divine image, you are beautifully, wonderfully made. So do not allow the negativity of rejection to penetrate your mind to make you feel less than who you are. Be secure in the fact that you belong to God and he does not make mistakes. Trust that His plan for you is perfect. You cannot allow the naysayers to get you off track. Know your purpose and pursue it, Jesus knew his purpose on the earth and he did not allow the rejecters nor his closest friends to deter him from the destiny that was at hand.
Look at the scripture again vs23 “this is the Lord’s doing it is marvelous in our eyes” your rejection is for your good and what will come out of it will be marvelous in the eyes of others. Do not despise the process that it takes to get you where God is trying to take you. Become a fortified city of LOVE and pursue your destiny. Rejection is a hard thing for anyone to experience but the results will be marvelous once God turn it around in your favor.
Love yourself and beauty that God has made you to be. Rejection makes you stronger it will give you the motivation to pursue purpose with vigor. Receive the GRACE to heal from rejection.
So for the past few days I have been cleaning my house and packing up old and some new things to get the house ready to sale. This has been a long and thought out decision my husband and I have made. We thought we were going to do this a few years ago but we kept changing our minds, not sure if we wanted to make another huge investment and we didn’t know if we wanted to even stay in this city. So anyway we put it off and just recently we both had this feeling that we were ready to make a change. Even though we love our house, it holds some sentimental value for the both of us. It was our first major purchase together as husband and wife, our kids grew up here, we have so many memories in that house it was hard for us to make this decision but you know we came to the conclusion that this chapter of our lives has ended and it is time to turn the page.
So many times we get caught up in the decision and the emotional impact of the decision that we forget to consult God and why we are contemplated a move. Many times God through Holy Spirit is trying to move us from one season to the next and we refuse to move. Just like with us Holy Spirit was moving on us several years ago to get us to this point but we just didn’t see it because we were caught up in our emotional attachment but God was and is trying to bless us. The bible states in Ecclesiastes chapter 3 verse 1 that “to every thing there is a season, and a time to every purpose under the heaven:2 A time to be born, and a time to die; a time to plant, and a time to pluck up that which is planted” you see everything has its season and time for the particular purpose that God is trying to fulfill, but once that season is over we have to be prepared to move on.
There is so much that God want to accomplish in and through us but we have to know when to close the chapter and begin the next. So how do you know when the seasons are changing? For one when you cannot find the same happiness in that situation that you once had (now do not misunderstand this statement I am not saying leave everything because you are not happy). What I mean by this is when you do not have fulfillment, and there is a desire in you for more but your current situation is just not filling that void, then you must yield yourself to prayer and be prepared for the answer. We must pray and consult God and when He gives you the answer that a change is needed then you must move on. The bible tells us to acknowledge God in all our ways that He may direct our path, so in every decision that you make, consult God because he is the only one that knows your end from your beginning. He knows what is in store for you and what is best for you. He knows when the seasons are changing and He will give you the GRACE to move forward. Do not be stagnated when God wants to bless you with BETTER.
In all of this you must trust God in every season of your life. Change is not easy nor is it pleasant all the time but it is necessary. We are looking forward to this next chapter. God is doing great things in our lives we may not know every step but we are walking by FAITH in anticipation of what is next.
Ecclesiastes 3:1 To every thing there is a season, and a time to every purpose under the heaven:2 A time to be born, and a time to die; a time to plant, and a time to pluck up that which is planted
So yesterday I went to my home church for the “Glory Encounter” it was a wonderful service. I always love going back home and worshipping with my family and friends at Mt Moriah. This Sunday a special guest minister was there to give the morning message, while he was preparing to begin his message he said something that sparked my attention it wasn’t the main point of the message but what I call a side bar (a little extra nugget not the main nugget but yet still important). Anyway he said “every morning that I get up I place my feet on Better Boulevard”. Oh my goodness yes that simple statement made me smile and think.
This statement made me think about how I approach my day. Do I get up expecting a great day? Do I expect a day better than the day before? I will be honest with you sometimes I don’t. Some days I take it for granted and not really think about my day I just get up, have my devotion time and get ready for work and go about my day as usual. That is not a good way to live life but sometimes we get so caught up in the monotony of life and we do not expect anything but the usual. This is not how Jesus would have us to live. You see Jesus came that we may have life and life more abundantly. This abundant life that Jesus died for should be a one of expectation. A life believing that every day you get up you place your feet on better boulevard and that no matter what you are going through it will get better. We should live a life always expecting God to meet our needs and to show up in our day.
Every day you get up is a chance to have a better life. Let’s look at Jeremiah’s statement in Lamentations 3:22-23“because of the Lord’s great love we are not consumed, for his compassions never fail.They are new every morning; great is your faithfulness”. You see because of the great love that God has for us we can expect better. Every day he is faithful to love us and extends His compassion and mercy toward His people. So tomorrow when you wake have an expectation that today is better than yesterday. Today is full of new mercy, new opportunities and new grace for a better day. If you find yourself falling back to the norm shake yourself and remember your feet are place on better boulevard.