Tag Archives: stress

Believe ~ a humble servant


“Blessed is she who has believed that what the Lord has said to her will be accomplished!” Luke 1:45

Ruby & the Romantics blared from the speakers overhead, “Our day will come”, the words pierced my very soul and a smile spread slowly across my face until I was grinning from ear to ear. The words may as well have been spoken by God himself for the impact they had on me.

Four o’clock that morning I had awoke to a screaming migraine that was the result of stress and worry. Stress about what the coming day would hold for me, and worry that I would make a complete fool of myself in front of the very ones that I felt, held power over my future. This was the day that I was to place my manuscript and proposal in the hands of an editor for consideration. 


I tried many things to alleviate the pain that radiated through my skull; medication, a cool shower, scripture meditation; nothing worked. After an hour, the thought of riding the elliptical trainer downstairs for my morning workout, seemed an impossibility. But dwelling on the pain wasn’t helpful either, so off I went.

Music played in the gym, but I was alone.  I chose a bike in the corner and began to pedal my way through the routine.

Eyes closed, breathing deep, I tried to release the tension that had found its way across my shoulders. But it wasn’t until Ruby and God began to serenade me that the tense muscles began to relax and the pain in my brain began to drain! With the first four words of that song, I realized that no one held power over me but God, and that I am never alone; He is always with me. That no matter what transpired later on that day, my only job was to be obedient; to say yes to the invitation, and then to be faithful with the task. To believe that God would accomplish what He promised. I believed and for that I was rewarded.

There was a time long ago that a very young girl was given a task that had to have been daunting. Frightening even. Let’s face it, if an Angel appeared out of the blue and told you that your life was going to change dramatically, maybe to the point of endangering your life, but that you had a choice in the matter; what would you say?

My first reaction would most likely be unbelief, like Zechariah. {John 1}  Do you recall what happened to him? Mute….for like 9 months!!  Couldn’t say a word! Next, I would probably be weighing the pros and cons and thinking about how this was going to impact my plans, my life. As I contemplated this madness, I imagine the Angel standing in front of me, arms crossed, tapping his toe on the floor and looking at his watch. {do angels wear watches?}

By the time I would have made what I considered a rational decision, I’m sure that the offer would have been rescinded and He’d be off to another unsuspecting girl, maybe one a little less neurotic, to offer the blessing that I had missed out on.

For that is what it would be, a blessing. Right? Would it be difficult? Probably. Life altering? Most likely. A blessing? Definitely! I wonder how many times the Lord has asked me to join Him, to respond to a blessing, and I have shrugged my shoulders with indifference?

But Mary simply said yes.

It isn’t likely that an Angel is going to appear at your door bringing good tidings from the Lord (although you never know!), but has He appeared in other ways asking for your commitment? It could be a plea for help from a member of your congregation, a friend or a co-worker. Maybe a struggle that you are witness to that could have used your assistance. Or possibly someone just needing acceptance; a friend. These are offers to join Him in His work and receive a blessing.

Looking back, you can usually tell when you have missed it, for there is that nagging feeling tugging at your heartstrings that you should have helped, or offered a shoulder. Or maybe you spent an inordinate amount of time rationalizing why you didn’t, or couldn’t. It is in the recognition of God at work that the invitation takes place.

But let’s be honest – sometimes God’s work can be downright inconvenient in our lives. It most likely will not fit in with the plans that you have made for your day. There are times where it may even be exhausting; but it will ALWAYS be a blessing.

This week, let’s commit to:

  • opening our eyes and our hearts this season to the people that Jesus places in our paths

  • recognizing the needs of those around us

  • hearing His call and answering with a resounding yes without hesitation

  • believing that He has a plan for us, a plan to prosper us and not to harm, and respond.

Once you begin to recognize the masters call and respond, it will become second nature. But first we need to believe that God has a plan.

Believe like Mary believed.

Without thought for herself or her future – only for the honor of saying YES to the Masters call.


Soli Deo Gloria!

A Father’s Love (part 3) ~ Worry and Fear



“Do not be afraid, for I am with you” Gen.26:24

Fear is the #1 evil spirit that affects our lives. The specific command to not be afraid appears in the bible 9 times, and “do not fear”, another 5. Jesus tells us in Luke 12:5 that the only fear that we should have is of “him who, after your body has been killed, has authority to throw you into hell. Yes, I tell you, fear him.”

Do you know why we have been commanded not to fear? It is because fear is an extremely destructive spirit, which seeks to destroy us and make us into its image instead of God’s image.

Science has proven that when an extremely tense situation happens in our lives and we need to react quickly, there are certain metabolic responses that happen within our brains and glands(chemicals that are released), that allows our bodies to deal with the immediate danger and do what is needed to survive or deal with that situation. This is a fear response and is normal and expected. But when we have constant fear in our lives, there is a perpetual drip, drip, drip of these chemicals keeping our bodies in a continual state of action and reaction. The long term effects of this constant state of non-peace causes blood cells, and consequently all cells, to form rigid membranes around them (like a callous), in response to this constant affront. This in turn can cause all sort of problems such as nutrients not being able to be absorbed, or the toxins that our blood is responsible for filtering out the body are not released as they should be. This is when sickness and disease is allowed to take over.

You may think that you are not afraid because you don’t have any distinguishable fears that come to mind, but the enemy is very sneaky. Do you experience any of these things in your life?

  • ·        Chronic headaches
  • ·        Worry about your job; like if you will have one tomorrow or some other aspect of the job and your responsibilities within it.
  • ·        Concern about your children’s future, where will they go to college, will they be able to get a job, they haven’t called – are they okay?
  • ·        Stress about how you will pay the mortgage. Stress comes from how we accept fear as just a part of living ~ The American Way!
  • ·        Dread about visiting a family member who pushes your buttons.
  • ·        Lack of confidence about something that you need to do, or that God has asked you to do. God wouldn’t ask if He didn’t know that you could do it!
  • ·        Fear of the food you eat, that it contains harmful things. Read Mark 16:18
  • ·        Concern that your kids look perfect for church; basing your self-worth on them and not where it belongs – in who you are in God.

These things in our lives are so common that we don’t recognize them for what they are…sin. The enemy disguises itself as something that we perceive as common and normal, but God did not make us to be in perpetual fear. 1 Peter 5:7 says this: “cast all your care upon him; for he cares for you.”  Fear keeps us thinking inward instead of looking to God for our care. Remember: perfect love casts out fear. And God is the only one capable of perfect love.

We must remember who we were created to be and focus on the one who can sustain us instead of the world that threatens to tear us down.


Here are a few things that we can do to combat the evil one when fear rears its ugly head:

  1. 1.     Recognize – first we need to recognize it for what it is….sin, and then also where it comes from…the evil one. “…for whatsoever is not of faith is sin.” Romans 14:23

  2. 2.     Responsibility – Once you see an area that you are wrong, take responsibility for the problem and then repent. Let God know that you are sorry for participating in something that you now recognize as sin. “If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness. `1John 1:9

  3. 3.     Renounce and remove – the thing that you now recognize as sin must now be viewed as your enemy and removed. This is the action that must take place…we must actively get rid of our enemy. “…and I would not that ye should have fellowship with devils.” 1 Corinthians 10:20b

  4. 4.      Resist and rejoice – Once you have removed your fear, resist the desire to entertain it again. God will help you if you ask….then rejoice and give thanks that you have been set free. Even if you have not seen the change yet, rejoice in the faith that it will come to pass. “Submit yourselves therefore to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you.” James 4:7 

The effects of fear in our lives can be very real, and cause real problems. I say flee….flee from the desires of the enemy and only entertain things of God. Then we will live in righteousness and splendor! Peace is the goal…let us aim for the winning side!

Next Monday: An Unloving Spirit

My Prayer: Lord I pray that I may recognize that spirit of fear in my life and take steps to banish it. Give me the strength I need to be who you desire me to be and not who the enemy would like me to become. I wish to not live in fear any longer but only in love.  In Jesus’ great name.

Reflect His Light!


A Father’s Love


1 Thessalonians 5:23

“And the very God of peace sanctify you wholly; and I pray God your whole spirit and soul and body be preserved blameless unto the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ.”   KJV

“I pray that God, who gives peace, will make you completely holy. And may your spirit, soul, and body be kept healthy and faultless until our Lord Jesus Christ returns.” CEV

I think that it is interesting that two version of the same verse, can bring about a different picture in your mind.  A common complaint that I hear is that the bible can be very difficult to understand, and I agree with that on many levels. Depending on which version you are reading, things can come alive and be so real for you and your life.

People differ in their opinions of whether to take the bible literally or just symbolically. If we read it to be a literal representation of what God has to say, I think that the message is cut and dry. If we choose to see it symbolically, then it is left to the interpretation of the one who is reading it and at that point it ceases in it’s accuracy, for each man will see what they want to see and leave out what they perceive as distasteful.

Many have trouble accepting that God breathed His words into others so that we could reap the benefits of His plans and desires for us, His perfect creation; but I think that this shows His unfailing love for us. God is love: perfect love. He loves as a father loves his child, completely and without fail. He wants us to know His plans for us and how to live them out. It is our job to seek the truth and apply it, and in that we will be made whole; spirit, soul and body.

I think a great first step is understanding our Father’s love and accepting it as a baby accepts the love of it’s parents; without question or reservation. We have a tendency to think that if we are good, if we become Christians, or if we go to church; then God will love us.  I’m not saying that these things aren’t important, they are, but it is not what makes God love us.

We are ALL loved by God, every one of us. The good, the bad and the ugly. We are, everyone of us, His creation and He loves each and every one of us without fail and unconditionally. I think that this is the most important thing for all of us to remember.

“For God so loved the world that He sent His only Son…” John 3:16

He loved the WORLD, not just the Christians, not just the Jews, not just those who were good, not even just those who believed in Him.  He love the world…all of His creation. Now that is not to say that they will all have eternal life, we have already been given the direction on that and it is not the subject of this writing. But we do need to understand that we are ALL His creation and we are ALL loved by Him.

A great first step into understanding God, His heart, and what He wants for us.

Accept His love as unconditional and go to Him as a child, with arms wide open, ready to accept a great big hug!

Over the weekend I was blessed in ways that I hadn’t even imagined possible. I attended a class that I thought was going to teach me one thing, but in the end it was so much more, providing foundational things that I am just now beginning to unravel in my mind. It all started as a visit to a church on Sunday and below is the message that was given in the service.  My life has been changed and continues to change as I unwrap the gifts that were given to my spirit. If you are interested in seeing what it is all about, the video of the service is below. Watch and receive!

I pray that you are blessed today, know that the Father loves you always!!


Lifestyles of the Rich and Famous


What is success?

How do you know when you have achieved it? Is it when you finally can buy that new car, or possibly you measure your success by your job position, your house and neighborhood, or even by the tags that are attached to the clothes in your closet? The world tells us that in order to be successful we need to set goals, achieve them and then set more. But I wonder how God measures success? Does He look at what we have? The car we drive? The clothes we wear? I doubt it.

In fact, some of the most successful people in the bible had absolutely nothing.  Jeremiah was flat broke, Joseph was imprisoned and then a slave before he became second in command of all of Egypt, and Jesus had

“nowhere to lay his head” (Matt. 8:20), and He was the Son of God!

We place an immense amount of pressure on ourselves every day to be more, do more, have more. We envy the “Joneses” and therefore do everything in our power to be just like them, have what they have, and ultimately, drive ourselves crazy in the process.  Stress becomes a way of life, leading the way for sickness and depression. Was this your goal?  Is that what you wanted to be when you grew up…sick and depressed? I doubt it.

Jeremiah may have been poor; in fact nobody even listened to what he had to say. For 40 years he gave Jerusalem God’s message of repentance or doom. They did not listen. He dishonored himself before the people in demonstration of the things that would befall them if they did not turn their faces to God. They did not repent. He was Faithful, they were doomed. I’m sure that the Israelites did not view Jeremiah as a rich man or a success for that matter, for no one listened to a word he said. In fact they laughed at him. But God did. Why? Because he was faithful and obedient. That is all that God ask from us, faith and obedience.

Goals are not bad, nor are money or security or many of the other things that the world can provide. It is when we rely on the world or our own efforts to provide that security, or when we give possessions and money a front row seat in our hearts, before God, that we begin to slide down that slippery slope of humanity.

We can learn many wonderful lessons about health, wealth and security from the Godly sons and daughters of the bible. And just because you are obedient and faithful to God does not mean that you will be poor or lose everything, there are many examples of people who were immensely blessed, yet were faithful followers. Solomon asked for wisdom, but God gave him wealth as well. Martha, Lazarus’ sister, was wealthy and yet loved the Lord with all her heart.  These two people were obedient and God blessed them. Obedience is the key to right living with God.

We all know in our hearts when we are doing something we shouldn’t be doing, watching something we shouldn’t be watching, saying something that we shouldn’t be saying.  It’s that tug at your heart that gives you pause, a flash of regret after you’ve let something slip. We’ve all done it. Solomon and Martha had their moments of weakness as well, no one is immune. But it’s in these moments that we should fall to our knees and ask for forgiveness and guidance to do better, and then obey. I think that we are good at the asking for forgiveness part, it’s the obeying part that has many of us miffed. We continue to make the same mistakes, over and over, not learning the lessons we are to learn.  This takes obedience and resolve.

Let’s resolve today to do exactly what God is leading us to do…right now…without hesitation. It will usually be something that we would rather resist, a habit that we don’t really want to give up, but listen to your heart, it will convict you.  You may feel justified in an action that you know deep down is wrong, resist it, listen to Gods leading.  Pause and let your heart convict you…and then obey.

My Prayer:

Lord, I know that my faults and failures are many, but my desire to be a Godly woman is sincere. Guide my heart today, place that conviction within me and give me a heart of obedience. Jesus, guide my steps as I encounter the people that you place before me and show them the love that you have for them, I wish to be your hands and feet , but mostly your heart. Be my heart Lord.


Reflect His Light!


The Worry Wart


     Having a Mary Heart in a Martha World - Chapter 3 - The Diagnosis    

 ”Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.”   Philippians 4:6-7

          Chapter 3 – The Diagnosis talks mainly about worry…worry that can be debilitating and cause stress, sleeplessness and sickness.  Most of what we worry about are things that we can’t do anything about, things that will never happen, things from the past that we can’t change anyway, criticism from others which may or may not be true and our health which gets worse with stress. Only 8% of what we worry about, on average, are real problems that can be solved.  Jesus warned us about chronic anxiety when he said, “Therefore I tell you, stop being perpetually uneasy about your life” Matthew 6:25 (AMP).   This is not to say that there aren’t REAL concerns in our lives that we need to be concerned about.  If you have determined that there is a real threat in your life, you definitely need to address it.  There is the difference…there is something that you can do about it.

          The author gives us a few tips on managing worry, taken from Philippians 4:6-7:

  • Be anxious about nothing
  • Be prayerful about everything
  • Be thankful for all things  -  even the trials of life.

            I believe that a large part of why we are told to do this last one is because when you keep your eyes on the face of God, giving him everything, it takes your focus off of your worries and creates peace within you.  This is something that is not always easy to do, especially in the face of adversity and pain.  But if we continually work at it and are diligent in our giving it up to God, over time this peace becomes apparent in our lives; we feel it, it changes us, and definitely for the better. 

          I had some college courses that had to do with Psychology (that was actually my degree) and I remember this one exercise that we did in class that was a test of a sort, a test of events in our lives; getting married, having a baby, moving, losing a parent, etc.  Each event was assigned a number value and we were to add up the numbers that we accumulated from this list of events that occurred in our lives in the last 2 year span. If our numbers reached certain thresholds, the likeliness of being diagnosed with a crippling disease increased exponentially. It was a very enlightening exercise in my opinion, the point being that every time something stressful happened in our lives, the stress and worry that we experienced lowered our immune systems and allowed sickness to take hold.  Our immune systems are like Gods’ doctor, it was put in our bodies to take care of invading illness.  But when we abuse our bodies with things that lower this systems ability to work properly (ie; stress, worry, sleep deprivation….alcohol, smoking, food filled with preservatives, pills to wake up, pills to go to sleep-this is simply my thoughts!!) we take away it’s ability to take care of us.   We need to take care of the temples that are our bodies, our minds and our spirits, to live in harmony the way that God had always intended. So give it up to Him today, change the patterns of destruction and live in Gods’ peace!  (by the way, “Building the Temple” is the title of the book that I am working on and has to do with this very subject and many other aspects of taking care of our lives and living the way that God intended. ~Coming soon!)  Give Him your cares and He will care for you!

 Be at Peace today with the knowledge that you are loved!