I have heard it said countless times.
"I am not hearing God."
"I pray... but hear nothing."
"I wish He would just make it clear!"
"God never speaks to me."
Oh, the frustration that is felt when you feel you are calling out to God.... the God you so desperately want to trust and give your troubles to, yet, you hear nothing in response!
I have been there, many, many, MANY times. I totally understand my friends.
BUT..... once again.... God.
He is faithful.
He is listening.
He is able to do immeasurably more than we can ever think or imagine!! (Ephesians 3:20)
I am not going to tell you my breakthrough with hearing God's voice came easy.... it did not. I believe over the years I have heard Him speak from time to time but never in a consistent manner. I was often left questioning if that was truly His voice or my busy, yacky brain.
What brought me more clarity in hearing God than any other thing.... was DESPERATION. That's right! A complete and utter desperation for Him. Fully knowing and understanding that I had nothing left on earth left to help me.... but Him.
Finally realizing that God is my ONLY true source of comfort and peace and He has ALL the answers I will ever need.
We will find ourselves questioning SOOO many times.... why God allows us to travel through painful or devastating circumstances.... and I will tell you straight up.... this is one of the very reasons...
To strip you of every earthly comfort you have ever placed your trust in and leave you desperately seeking the ONE thing that will truly bring comfort. Him.
For us stubborn folks.... this can take MANY, MANY....... MANY hard lessons. God is nothing but faithful.... ergo.... He will NOT give up on you. So... if He has to take you to the threshold of hell to get you to finally seek Him..... that is exactly what He will do!
Since experiencing the great pain of a devastating season of life..... and then falling on my knees in desperation.... I have learned three ways God speaks clearly to me! I want to share them with you today!!!
1, QUIET TIME ALONE WITH HIM!!!! Folks, when I say quiet, I mean QUIET. I have learned that one of Satan's easiest and greatest tactics to keep us all from hearing God.... is NOISE! I hear God's voice and feel His presence the most when it is so quiet I could hear a pin drop in the room. Honestly, every little noise distracts me.... the dog's snore, the dog licking, music, car doors slamming, a random noise in the house. I have to have complete silence!! I sit in that silence... with my eyes closed... and heart open. At first, it feels uncomfortable... Satan makes sure of that.... but then all of a sudden... I begin to feel His glorious presence.... like a flood of peace. In my mind... I can almost see a vibrant light.... and I know He is with me.
Seriously... if you have to go hide in your car... do so. You have to have silence and you have to learn to be still in it. We live in a noisy world and that is what we all have become accustom to. You cannot hear God.... through meaningless noise. Find your quiet space and time and invite God in. Be patient.... this is a learned behavior. It is not what we are used. to.
2. BE PREPARED FOR WARFARE! Seriously... it will happen. Prepare yourself in advance. Another Satan scheme is to place doubt in your mind that you are actually hearing God. This happens to me instantaneously when God speaks!
For instance.... I sit in my quiet.... come to God with a question or wait to hear His response and suddenly I will hear His directive....and BAM... hear comes Satan....leading me elsewhere. Playing 500 different scenarios in my mind why that won't work or is a bad idea. Making something else look more appealing. This happens... ALL. THE TIME!
For awhile I thought I was truly not hearing God and that I needed to listen to the 500 other possibilities, then I realized... God is not a God of confusion. He would not give me 500 different scenarios to choose from. He would speak softly and clearly and He would nudge my heart along with it. I have found when it is God... I feel a little spark in my heart. Just a tiny warmth. So I know it is from Him.... as He desires to touch my heart... so I will touch others.
3. READ HIS WORD.... EVERYDAY! God is NEVER, EVER, going to give you an answer that is contrary to what His word would tell you. So, if you don't know His word, you are going to be left not only confused, but possibly choosing contrary to what God would will.
The thing is... this does not have to be a stressful, have to, thing to add to your day. When I struggle with knowing what to read, I simply open up to Proverbs and read the Proverbs that coorelates with the date. There is a WEALTH of knowledge in Proverbs!! It is an easy start to get you in the word.
Meditate on what you have read all day. When your mind is adrift, bring it back to Him and His word. Start training your mind to heart God's word and voice, rather than the world's noise!!
I pray these three little tip will help you!! It is not a one size fits all and something different may work for you! These are my steps to hearing what God wills for me and even still, sometimes I don't hear right away. God can also make us wait on an answer.
But in that wait.... are more lessons to be learned. In that wait..... He is teaching us... to be still... and know He is God.
I pray you learn to find comfort in the silence..... to prepare for battle when you seek Him..... and find joy in His word. For these very things..... have made me.... a woman redeemed.
Peace and Blessings
We live in a very beauty focused world!
It is quite disturbing when you really ponder it. The beauty craze does not discriminate either! Both women and men have found an unhealthy focus on outward beauty! I have seen this evolve even since I was young, which really was not THAT long ago, come now!! LOL
Take a look at Pinterest or just the internet in general, you will never want nor need for an article on hair, makeup, fitness/weight or fashion. Don't get me wrong, I love to play around with make up and fun clothes as much as the next gal and I am always eyes and ears for a handy make up or hair tip, however, I have learned something so much more valuable about beauty, than how to properly apply my mascara...... I have learned.....
"I Cannot Obsess with the Image in the Mirror.... While Neglecting the Reason it's There."
I have blogged many times before on the IMPERATIVE importance of a beautiful heart. I can express enough the changes you will experience when you allow God to penetrate your heart at its core and give Him the power to shine His light through your!
Beauty takes on a WHOLE new meaning! Most women can be very critical of their looks, specifically their body. I am no exception, I used to pick a part photos of myself or often be dissatisfied with how my outward appearance looked. Since allowing God to truly take up full residence in my home, I have begun to lose that desire to self critique. I can look in the mirror now and be content with what I see. I can snap a selfie and not be self conscious, like I used to. Heck... I have even become comfortable with vlogging... WITH NO MAKEUP!!!
Why? Because God lives in me.... that is ALL the beauty I need.
Sure, I still LOVE make up and hair and clothes and all that jazz.... I am after all, a woman. That is part of femininity and that is ok! What is not ok..... is obsessing over the image in the mirror while neglecting the reason it's there!
So.... today... do you want to INSTANTLY look more beautiful????? Here are sure fire ways and you won't find them in your bathroom or closet.....
1. SMILE! Yes SMILE! In the words of Truvy from Steel Magnolias.... "SMILE.. it increases our face value!!" And it does! A heart fixed on the Lord cannot walk around with a frown or scowl! His love and grace are way too good for us to do anything but smile at the thought of Him! A cheerful heart... makes a cheerful face... which radiates beauty!
2. SERVE/ GIVE! Look around you and ask God to show you ways you can help, serve or give on a daily basis! Make this the purpose of your day! It does not matter how small the gesture is, a kind note or email, an encouraging word, an impromptu gift or surprise, a homemade baked good or meal delivered to someones door or offering to run an errand for a busy mom. ANYTHING... you can do in service to others... is a beautiful thing!
3. ENCOURAGE/ DON'T DISCOURAGE! It goes back to the old saying if you can't say anything nice, don't TALK! I get it, I have found myself in the act of discouragement, but truly, that is all about my heart! If I honestly believe that my God can do immeasurably more than anything I could think or hope for (Ephesians 3:20) than I should not have anything but encouragement on the tip of my tongue. Because I am human and will fail at this... that is why God made it possible for us to close our traps and keep them closed! LOL Like I tell my children, you do not have to say EVERY SINGLE WORD that comes to your mind!
4. LOVE! Yes, LOVE! Love all people but specifically the ones that are hard to love. You know who they are!! Ask God to help you with this, as it can be a difficult task, however, beauty is found all over a heart that can love those that appear to deserve it the least. Now let me clarify, that loving someone does not mean APPROVING of everything they do, loving someone simply means showing them kindness and respect believing God can redeem anyone!!!
So there you have it! INSTANT beauty! No lipstick or curling iron holds a candle to these actions! When you choose beautiful behavior, it will A) only enhance the outward beauty and B) very often it will completely take the focus off the outward, because people will see your heart FIRST.
My beauty comes from the God... that made me... a woman redeemed!!
Peace and Blessings
I swear I was born a worrier.
As a little girl I worried endlessly about anything and everything I can think of! I recall having stomach aches frequently and that burning, churning pain in the pit of my stomach. As a kid, you really do not understand WHY you worry, and you surely do not have the capacity to understand that you don't HAVE to worry.
Worrying... just became normal to me.
However normal it may have seemed, it was far from healthy and never proved productive. Constant worry/ anxiety can be unbearable and will send you running for the quickest form of relief. Often, that relief can lead to unhealthy coping mechanisms, which lead to bigger problems! For me, it lead to a four year battle with Anorexia. Anorexia became my source of control and order. I took my focus off of everything else and gave me a false sense of relief as I felt I was able to control SOMETHING in my life! The more control I had over my eating and exercise regiment the better I felt. The painful cries of hunger that growled within my stomach were a sign of beautiful victory to me!
You can clearly see my point, regarding unhealthy coping mechanisms!
As an adult my worrying got better, but was still a thorn in my side! I believe part of the reason it got better was as an adult, I had more control over my environment and circumstances. I could make choices for myself and remove myself from stressful situations, where as a child, you rarely have that option. You are kind of like a sitting, cement, duck!
When Christ found me.... I found an entirely new outlook on worry and fear! He revealed to me these emotions were NOT from Him, but 100% devil sent! In Christ, there is no reason to worry, as He is now our life guide. He has our best interest at heart and has a beautiful plan for our lives, that often may include some struggles, but those struggles have purpose!
Yet, even with this knowledge, I still fall into the pit of worry, fear and anxiety! Here are the most powerful tools God has given me to FIGHT and STAND against this evil tactic of the enemy....
1. PUT THINGS IN PROPER PERSPECTIVE! This one is huge!! As I think back to all of the things I have wasted precious time worrying about, I can honestly tell you a vast majority of them NEVER came to pass. Think about it. Ponder all of the things, issues or situations you have attempted to control by worrying and the issue never became an issue! I can tell you with great confidence that this will more than likely continue to be the case for the list of things satan will give you to worry about! What if's almost always turn out to be.... wins!
2. PLACE YOUR WORRY IN THE HANDS OF GOD! Easy right? No, this takes time to learn how to accomplish, nevertheless, it is totally attainable! I am living proof! God gave me this scripture to ponder years ago in my season of endless worry and anxiety... "Commit your work to the Lord and your plans will succeed." Proverbs 16:3 When worry comes knocking on my heart, I meditate on this scripture over and over and over again. God's got my back! Always.
3. BELIEVING THAT EVEN IF MY WORST FEARS CAME TRUE..... GOD HAS A PLAN AND BETTER YET... HE IS USING YOU! He does. No matter what it is, how badly it hurts, He has a plan and a purpose! A mighty one at that. You are just an instrument He uses to accomplish His greater will on this earth. Allow Him to use you as He desires and reap the blessings that you never though possible, through the struggles you only believed would sink you.
4. TAKE THE FOCUS OFF OF YOU! This one is 100% full proof in my book! Stop obsessing over your own life and place your focus on someone else's or another situation in which God could use you! When I have woke up in the morning with anxiety and worry plaguing my heart, but rather than wallow in that, asked God, who can I serve today? Who needs a phone call, kind note, some cookies, a break from their children, whatever it may be, I find a peace that surpasses all understanding. God designed our hearts to find the most joy, the most peace, the most fulfillment through serving others by serving Him.
"The Greatest Joy... Comes From Hands.... Immersed in the Work of God."
5. UNDERSTAND THE REALIZATION THAT THIS WORRY/ FEAR IS SATANS WAY OF STEALING PRECIOUS YEARS OF YOUR LIFE! It is. He wants pain, heartache and unbearable fear and worry to wipe you out to the point you are not able to lift a finger to serve the God that can heal you. If your focus is solely on the doom that surely awaits you, your energy is spent! I know, I have been there. During these past years of struggle in our home I have experienced more anxiety than I can ever remember. Literal shaking, could't eat, couldn't be still, yet didn't want to move. What I learned was priceless..... no matter WHAT Is happening around me.... I can choose joy. It ain't easy folks! But with persistence and an absolute REFUSAL to stay stuck in Satan's trap, I have learned to allow the fear to come but then quickly resolve to kick it to the curb and press on toward God's goal for me... which has NO fear involved!
Fear is a lie.... that holds you prisoner in your own body!
You CAN combat it! You WILL combat it. God. Never. Fails!!!!!
My fear, though may surface, has been replaced with a peace that only comes through placing my trust in the One who has my life mapped out to the tiniest detail Because of His faithfulness... I am a woman... redeemed.
Peace and Blessings
Hi There!! WELCOME! My name is Missy. I am 40 years old, I have a husband, 4 children, 2 dogs, 2 cats and a little bit of sanity! I love Jesus but struggle with letting Him lead. Join me on this crazy earthly journey where press on to win the race God lays before us. So one day... we can receive our crown!