Visiting Angels

Question: Have you ever helped a beggar on the street? Offered a shoulder to cry on or a hug to someone in need? Have you ever opened your home to a person in need? Fostered a child? It is in those actions that we are told we may have helped an angel, here on earth. By helping the “least of these” we are following God’s example. His plan for us. We are doing what the Bible tells us to do.

In Genesis we are told that Abraham helps three strangers in the desert. When he invites them over to give them rest in the cool shade and provides water and washes their dusty feet, they are mere strangers to him. It isn’t until later he realizes that he is in fact in the presence of the Lord and two angels. (Genesis 18:1-15)

We are urged to help strangers in Hebrews 13:2 “Do not forget to entertain strangers, for by doing so some have unwittingly entertained angels.” God sends them to us to remind us to show compassion to all His children. We are to treat all God’s children as honored guests, not just those who we feel are worthy. In the eyes of God we are all worthy, not just those who “look” as though they are. Whether or not you are accommodating one of Heaven’s Host, you are always offering hospitality to one of God’s most beloved ones. He loves all His children, they are always special to Him. They are always beloved to Him. That includes you, dear one!

Lord, teach me to offer hospitality to all those who I may cross paths with. Just as You have offered to me. Amen.

 

Biblical Empowerment

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She is clothed with strength and dignity and she laughs without fear of the future. Proverbs 31:25

Wow! What a verse that describes how we are to view women. Not as weak creatures with little or nothing to offer the world. No, God tells us that women are equal to men in every way. Women possess great power and dignity. We are full of grace, love, kindness, compassion and empathy. Men often lack many of these attributes. Men and women are equal, but not the same. It’s okay to say that because God has a purpose for both men and women, He did not create us to be the same. Equal, yes. The same? No…

God is within her, she will not fall. Psalm 46:5

When we take God into our lives, He is with us and will not let us fall. Does that mean we will live a perfect life, without hardship or pain? No, it simply means He is there for us, to catch us, to understand and help us along the way. We must choose our path of righteousness. We much look to Him for answers, clarity and mercy. Starting each day in His Word will help us with that. How does that look? Well, for me, personally, I start each day with yoga, to clear my mind and help me focus. I then do Bible readings and devotions. I wrap it up with prayer time. My mornings are filled with Christian music, no tv, no news, no social media. Just me and God. This takes time, discipline, the ability to get up each day earlier than everyone else.

These next several days I will be sharing some verses and insights to those verses to empower us all as women and get us through the day in His Word.

 

Creative

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Being a creative thinker means to take what we know and turn it into a strength we can use to empower ourselves to be more, be the best we can be. As a teacher and freelance writer I tap into my creative side each day. Whether it is lesson planning or blogging, I need that part of me to live each day to its fullest. I listen to music that will get those juices flowing as I am planning or writing.

Whether it is art, or coaching others, teaching, nursing or just being at home you can tap into this awesome entity of yourself and use it. It is my passion to think outside of the box to solve problems. You need to live life as fully and creatively as possible. Believe in yourself and in the empowerment inside of you and what you have to offer the world.

Discover your creative voice. Before you are truly able to, know who you are you need to know what is true in your own heart. Listen to the creative impulses you already have inside of you. They will point you toward knowing who you are and what is right for your life. Your inner voice will guide you to your deepest desires and passions. You must claim your worthiness and get rid of any negative beliefs you have about yourself.

Identify your personal purpose and meaning in life. Doing this will help line up all your focus, actions and investments. What you make of different events and experiences that happen in your life is up to you and no one else. What happens to you because of the actions and decisions of others is out of your control. Stop giving away your power to others because of what they may think of you. Stop looking outside of God and yourself for approval and worthiness. Be worthy in God’s eyes and your own. It is a journey, relationship and practice that comes from within.

Without faith, you have nothing, faith in God, faith in yourself. Faith fuels the imagination and creates reality. Make space in your life for what you want. Expect it to come and let life blow your mind. Commit to be creative in all you do. Without commitment you will fail.

I would love to hear about some of your creative life experiences. What do you do to keep creativity flowing in your life?

Abundance

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Abundance is, in large part, an attitude

Living an abundant is everyone’s dream. We all want to live a life in which we feel happy and fulfilled. As the quote at the beginning suggests, it’s all about attitude. Your attitude is something you have complete control over. Here are some tips to help you have the abundant life you have been searching for.

  1. Have abundance mentality. This is the mentality that there is enough  for everyone, so someone else’s gain isn’t your loss. By having abundance mentality you won’t feel jealous when someone else succeeds. You know you can have your own success.
  2. Be grateful for what you have. You need to look at what you have and stop complaining about what you don’t have. You can have a grateful spirit no matter how much or how little you have. There are people who need to go through a painful loss before they can see what they have. Don’t let that happen to you.
  3. Smile. So simple, yet so effective. Changing how when and how often you smile can impact and change the course of your day. Even if your day isn’t going as planned you can choose to respond positively. Smiling sends a positive message to yourself and others that you are winning at life.
  4. Start your day right. How you start your day will greatly influence how it goes. This looks different for everyone. For me it looks like this
    • Wake up
    • Exercise (four days a week)
    • Bible Readings and devotions
    • Organize for work
  5. Make the most out of every opportunity. Once you have an opportunity explore the full use of it. Don’t let it pass, half-used. Look for other ways to use it. Maybe combine it with something else to create a new opportunity.
  6. Enjoy your life. Living an abundant life means you should be able to enjoy your life without waiting on something big to happen. You can be happy right now with what you have.

I hope these steps will help you on your personal journey of feeling more empowered.

Energetic

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Energetic. What does that mean for you? It isn’t the same for everyone. I used to be energetic in the fact that I worked out twice a day. I was a little obsessive about that. Now, it means something else. It means that I get up, work, do the “mom” and “wife” thing, go to bed hopefully by 11:00 pm. Only to get up and do it all again. I’m energetic when it comes to my kids, my work and most of all the Bible. I wake to read my Bible each day and spend time in prayer. I love teaching about the Bible to kids. I am super excited about teaching the entire group tomorrow night about how the Bible is true and useful today.

My energy is dispersed all over now. I workout, but a few times a week as opposed to a few times a day. I am energetic in my fight to spread epilepsy awareness. My daughter and husband have it, different types. My daughter suffers daily, my husbands is more controlled. I was energetic today when, after work, I went out to vote. I feel passionately about our right to vote and choose our leaders. I hope you found the energy to get out there.

There are some daily habits you could work on if you need that extra push to feel energetic.

  1. You have heard it a million times, why not make it a million and one? Start the day off with a good nights sleep. Your brain needs it, your body needs it. To quote Ms. Lorelai Gilmore “You have to sleep. It’s what keeps you pretty.”
  2. Take small breaks throughout the day. When I worked away from home I would get 1-2 hour breaks, all at once. Believe it or not that made the day harder. I would come home, do some clean up around the house, get dinner all set to be cooked and head back to work. I never sat down on my long break. That is until I was pregnant, then I went home and slept.
  3. Eat well. Fruits and veggies is what we need. Not chocolate and caffeine. Those stimulates can confuse your brain and your body.
  4. Exercise regularly. I fall short of this time and time again. Tomorrow is already Wednesday and it will be my first day at the gym this week… oops!!

There you go, a few steps you can try each day to get the energy back that you have been longing for.

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Thriving

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Phew! I have so busy this week. Four kids plus owning a business means I am always up, on by toes and busy. I feel like I haven’t had any time to sit, let alone write. There was Halloween, work and more work, one of my kids turned 14 and I had to go on my kids’ youth group retreat. I have a daughter with epilepsy and a few other disorders and she is a Senior in highschool. She didn’t want to miss her last retreat and the Pastor and leaders are a little nervous because she has had several tonic clonic seizures while at church.

Anyway, lets talk about becoming a woman who thrives. Most of our lives are busy and chaotic, many are often late, unorganized maybe even argumentative with family, friends and their bosses. In order to cope with busy lives we often develop bad habits, bingeing on food or Netflix, maybe smoking or even drinking, just to get over the stress of the day.

Many women today are just surviving. They live to eat, earn, produce and just do what is needed to survive until the next day. Women are meant to thrive, not just survive! Women who are empowered and the ones who feel empowered are the women who are able to drive growth.

To thrive is to stop believing you can control everything…

That’s right ladies, you cannot control everything in the world.  Being an empowered or thriving woman means you know when can and when you can’t control something. So many things are simply our of our reach. We can’t do it, so we feel like we failed. You will feel empowered and in control when you have succeeded at controlling or dominating your circumstance, job, marriage or career, but that won’t last long. It is beyond our capacity as humans to control situations, feeling, how others act and how they think. As soon as you accept that reality, you will fall into a peace with yourself, your life. This acceptance will boost your spirit and help you thrive in all circumstances, no matter what.

To thrive is to stop pretending you possess inhuman powers to do everything…

Women are known for their ability to multi-task. Just because you do this does NOT mean you can manage all things all the time. Accepting this fact is the second key to thriving in this world, especially if you are a woman.

Everyone only gets 24 hours in a day. That is 24 hours to get what is needed done. God designed it that way. He designed it so that for part of that time, our bodies need rest. We need to organize and prioritize what needs to be done each day. Each day I have a schedule, I used to hate getting off my scheduled time to do things. Now, I have a toddler, something I haven’t had in a while. She schedules the day for the most part now. She needs her nap at the same time each day and it lasts three hours! During that time, I usually get my work and writing done. My schedule revolves around her. Including when I stop and play. She needs me more than the dishes need to be washed, or dinner needs to be done. When she wants to play or just snuggle, I am there, whenever she needs it.

To thrive is to start saying “NO” to things you should…

People who say yes to every task they are asked to do often end up disappointing not only themselves but the people expecting them to do the task they said they could do. This applies to everyone, women who work, those who are home, full-time mothers and so much more.

I used to do this, especially with my church. If they asked I was there. I was doing so much at church that I was there as  much as the pastors! Some weeks, more. I thought that if they needed me I had to do it because well, God would be mad if I didn’t. When I got pregnant with my youngest, I was high risk and wasn’t allowed to do all that I had been doing. I was told not to work and not to serve at church, my blood pressure was extremely high and it was dangerous not only to me but to the baby. Guess what? My church did great without me and other people stepped in to serve in the areas I was working in. Now, I still serve but only when I can. I have a lot of down time to spend with family and even in fellowship with the Lord. He wants that more anyway.

To thrive is to put yourself first and prioritize your health…

This is hard, even for me. As a mom of four kids, three teens, one toddler and one with several disorders, it is hard to take the time to take care of myself. This is vitally important. If we don’t care for ourselves, how can we care for others. If I am sick, who is going to get mt daughter to her appointments. If I have a health issue and wind up in the hospital, I don’t get paid, as a business owner, I close and make nothing. I have learned that I need days for me. Days to go to the doctor, the dentist, even a haircut or mani/pedi.

It is imperative that women take care of themselves. We take care of so many other people around us. They will all be okay while we are gone for a few hours. Feeling and being healthy boosts confidence, which women need to thrive and not just survive in this world.

To thrive is to know it is an ongoing journey…

Thriving is not a destination. It is an ongoing journey that continues for a long time. Once you start this journey, it only gets better, there is no looking back. Ladies, if you are looking to reaching that point in your life where you can finally say you are thriving, look ahead. The journey is about to get better.

Worthy

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Everywhere we look someone is telling us what we need to be or do in order to be worthy in the eyes of this society. We are told what to eat, how to dress, how much to workout. We are told when our bodies are considered beautiful and when we are wearing enough makeup to cover up our imperfections. We are told that in order to be worthy, we must be career driven, successful and have it all. If we are home with our kids, taking care of our home and husband than we are looked at as less. We are thought to have settled instead of thrived.

There is a dark truth about many women who find themselves at the top of that ladder. Sometimes, they are there alone. They have no husband, no family and no real friends. While the woman that stayed home has a group of friends by her side, a husband that comes home with flowers in his hand and kids to keep her company. Instead of forcing ourselves to be what is worthy in the eyes of the world. Why not focus on what makes us worthy to the Lord or even to ourselves. Get rid of that fear of judgment!

God told women of their worth in the Bible. He elevated our position and gave us a place of respect and honor within the Christian home. I know in my home my kids and husband look to be for strength, for answers. They come to me when something has gone wrong. The look to me for what is right, how to behave. My daughter knows what to look for in her future husband. My boys look to me to see how women should be treated so they know what to do. When my husband brings flowers, they see my tears well up and the hugs and kisses and thank yous. They know what he did was huge, it made me feel awesome and they want to be that one day. My youngest, who is almost two, looks to me for what is right and wrong. She looks to her dad when it wrong to see if he will let ehr get away with it. 😉 lol

So, what makes you valuable as a woman? Your godliness and virtue. When you are a Christ-center, Spirit-filled woman committed to following Jesus, you will be the godly woman that God desires you to be. Unlike the outside world, God says your value is based on your ageless inner beauty of your Christlike character and how you serve Him.

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