Wow! Time is flying. You did it! You made it to day 5.
I am so grateful to God for everything. I’m so excited for the growth that’s happening in me during this challenge. I’ve gotten ideas for work, for my future. God doesn’t just care about our spiritual growth. He’s involved in every area of our lives. The verse of today is 4:19.
Read the previous verses for context. Paul is thanking the church for taking care of him. He talks about how he has learned to always be content through God’s strength. The whole fourth chapter is great to read.
My prayer for today is that we continue to trust God and to spend time with Him. To focus more on what He wants and less on what we want. I hope we all enjoy our time with Him!
Don’t forget to put a fifth X on your calendar today!
Here’s a video from my time at the National Symphony Orchestra yesterday!!
Lately I’ve been a bit frustrated with life. I feel like there are so many decisions to be made and I just don’t know what to do, yet it seems like everyone around me has no issue making decisions for me. It’s a powerlessness that I hate to feel. I want to stand up and speak for myself and boldly state what I want, and yet I’m paralyzed by indecision. Do I want you or don’t I? Do I want to stay or do I want to go? Am I happy or unhappy?
Are my decisions making me unhappy or is it the choices of others around me that’s bothering me? I hate when people ask me what’s wrong and I am completely at a loss. It could be five different things, I’m just not sure which it is.
Anyway, now that everyone knows I’m like a bipolar mess, I realized an important habit missing from my life– Bible study. I spend time in prayer, but not so much in the Word. I’ve noticed that I’ve plateau-ed spiritually and am really struggling to move forward in my walk with God. I know that has to change. If you aren’t growing closer to God, then you’re drifting farther away. There’s no other option.
So, I felt my Spirit beckoning me not just to go to God and make my case but to study God’s Word and hear what He has to say about the situations in my life.
If you’d like to join me, for the next 5 days (Tuesday to Saturday) I’ll share a verse passage for study and meditation for that day. If you have any questions please let me know. I am using the logos app on my phone to look up the original Hebrew meaning of the keywords (when I’m feeling fancy).
The first study passage is Psalm 75. The focus verses are verses 6-7 which read:
“For exaltation (promotion) comes neither from the east nor from the west nor from the south. But God is the judge: He puts down one, and exalts another. (NKJV)”
Study questions (grab a journal or spare sheet of paper. God doesn’t care if it’s a nearby envelope either lol).
When you are looking for promotion, who should your turn to?
Have you ever sought promotion from man and been let down?
Why does God put down some but exalt others?
This is so fun! We can wrap this up tomorrow. I hope that you choose to join me. It’s only five days, and I definitely believe that there is a supernatural breakthrough on the other side of this! Feel free to comment any answers or questions. Also, if you are a new subscriber and I haven’t sent you your ebook on praying for relationships, please let me know. I have a new phone number, so email me or direct message me if you need to chat!
I’ve been working for the past few weeks on transitioning to a WordPress site (before I was with Squarespace). I never realized all the technological aspects of operating a blog, and although I am a fairly technologically savvy person I been confused quite a few times.
I am grateful that having a relationship with God is so simple. It’s unlike having a relationship with people. It’s so much greater than any relationship we could ever have with anyone.
God doesn’t play games, He doesn’t make us jump through hoops, He doesn’t fake on us to get us to like Him more. He just loves us. He unequivocally (which means, in a way that leaves NO doubt) loves each and every one of us and is available to us 24/7.
That’s such an awesome opportunity. I am grateful for my relationship with my Creator, but I struggle oftentimes with obedience.
You see, when times get tough, it makes sense to turn to God. Atheists say that people who need God are weak, and need a crutch to lean on in order to make it through life. Everyone leans on something or someone to get through each day, just some people choose wrongly to lean on people (including themselves) rather than God. Many people (including myself) did not fully turn to Him until we got sick and tired of being sick and tired.
I have found it’s actually a challenge to stay focused on the Lord when times are good. The Israelites experienced this many times. When they were slaves in Egypt they cried out to God, but once they had been freed and were on their way to the promised land– all they could do was complain. It can be easy to take God and His gifts for granted. It can be easy to ignore Him when you got the husband you had prayed for, or when you finally get the promotion you fasted for. Now that times are good and you have everything that you want, it’s easy to push Him to the side.
Whereas before you were keeping His commandments, praying daily and worshipping at the church in order to be blessed, now you are spending all your time with the man He blessed you with. All because you got what you wanted, and it shows that you wanted the gift more than you wanted the Giver.
The Bible says in Hebrews 12:14 that without Holiness, no man will see God. Holiness is a daily demand. We cannot continue to walk holy and circumspectly with the Lord without spending time with Him. He gives us the strength, desire, and ability to please Him.
So, as I look at all my friends who are living it up and reveling in God’s blessings, please know how happy I am for you. I am so glad that you are happy, healthy, wealthy and whole. I have been blessed mightily, and pray that I continue to give God the glory. I just hope that we remember to keep God first– when times are tough, and when times are great.
I’m working on keeping those verses in my mind. Sometimes y’all, I talk too much. I have had to learn some tough lessons in life about keeping my mouth shut. It’s unfortunate when you say something you shouldn’t have said, and it gets you in trouble.
Have you ever “accidentally,” told a secret and it broke out around your friend group, church or school? I have. I only told one person, but it was the wrong person! The one who talks too much and loves to have gossip to talk about. I wasn’t being malicious when I told her, just not being wise. Unfortunately, sometimes once trust is lost it’s gone forever.
I had two friends (let’s call them Sheila and Ayesha) who had been arguing over something I felt was silly. I talked to Sheila in confidence, and she explained the issue she was having to me. I felt Sheila’s issue was fair, and that due to all the people involved and saying different things, that her issues were being confused with other people’s issues.
Once I talked to Sheila, I decided to be the UN and fix the issue myself, when I really just should have stayed out of it. So I went to Ayesha and told her that Sheila wasn’t mad at her for the things that she thought Sheila was mad at her for. She pushed for details and I gave her a few small tidbits. I asked Ayesha not to tell Sheila that I told her those things.
Ayesha went immediately and told Sheila everything I told her and even added a little more. Sheila then told Ayesha things I said about Ayesha and added a little more. By the end, they were united against me, all because I shared what Sheila told me. That drama was all during exam week btw. Anyway, I should have stayed out of it, and I shouldn’t have shared what was said to me in confidence, even if I felt like I had a good reason to.
Are you trustworthy? Can people rely on you to hide their secrets? If not, that can actually be a spiritual issue. Either you lack wisdom or you lack self-control. Some even want attention. Either way, check your motivations. As I frequently say, understand why you do the things you do.
For some reason, people have always been willing to come to me and tell me their secrets. I have had to make sure that I don’t speak out of turn. I have gotten to the point where I listen and then try to forget what they said! Just so I don’t hurt another person.
As a Christian, we should always be looking out for others and seeking the best interest of those around us. Everything always comes back to the golden rule: treat others the way you would want to be treated.
Life contains lots of detours. Some detours are direct results and consequences of our actions, while others are God ordained.
I remember when I graduated from high school at Riverdale Baptist School (go, Crusaders). I had worked hard, got good grades and participated in extracurricular activities. I wasn’t expecting to get into Harvard or anything, but I was expecting to get into schools I applied to like the University of Maryland Baltimore County (I wanted to stay close to home).
When the day of my high school graduation came around I still did not know where I was going. I hadn’t gotten a single acceptance letter. I realized later that I had only gotten into one school I applied to. This school required a follow-up interview which, for some odd reason, I was never able to schedule.
This was an utterly crushing event for me. I was embarrassed to tell people that I had to start taking online classes at Liberty University. I just didn’t understand. How could I graduate with a high GPA, sports, participate in student government, and everything that looked good on applications (everything we tell high school students to do to get into a good school), and yet end up taking online classes?
I was devastated and experienced depression for the first time in my life. I don’t think I’ve ever experienced disappointment on that level.
I ended up staying home and helping my younger siblings in high school. I got a job teaching home school students English and communications, which I really enjoyed.
About a year and a half after I graduated from high school I tried to get into the University of Maryland College Park. I kept calling them because they hadn’t given me an admissions decision. The day that the semester started they gave me my decision– I wasn’t accepted.
I called Liberty University that afternoon because I had applied to their school as a backup. They told me to come on down, got me a dorm and a class schedule and I started at Liberty University a day later on the second day of the Spring Semester.
I truly believe that this was no coincidence. I had plans to go to a good school and get a job as a journalist at the Post. God totally rerouted me because at the end of the day— only His plan mattered.
I am grateful I learned that lesson so young because as I’ve gotten older and see God do this time and time again I am not discouraged. I have learned not to fight God’s plan. I have learned to ask Him before I make decisions so that I can make sure I am staying on the path He has created for me.
Know that God created you with an incredible purpose. It may seem monotonous and it may not be glamorous right now. If you surrender your life to the Lord He can take you places you could never have dreamed for yourself. He constantly takes me places where I have to trust in Him and where I will be stretched. One day I will better understand why.
Be encouraged! We are world changers. There is nothing we cannot do. God brought people like Joseph, David, Gideon and Esther from nothing and used them to rule countries and free their people. He can do the same through us if we will let Him use us. Surrender your plans to the Lord today, and trust Him with your destiny. You won’t regret it.
Below is a slideshow from my first Semester at LU! (Thank God for the glo up!)