How I’m Learning to Be Still

I’m probably the last person that would typically write a post like this. While I’m good at reacting during a crisis, I’ll be the first to admit, sometimes day-to-day stressors just get to me, especially when it seems like so many of them keep piling, one on top of the other. Probably one of the toughest lessons I’ve had to learn spiritually is to just be still. Probably the toughest thing I’ve had to learn to do while pregnant is to wait on God.

Let’s face it, waiting on anything is not my strong suit…I think growing up in America has taught me to be very self-reliant and impatient. After all, this is the land of drive-thru’s and self-checkout lines. This is an area that I have to submit to the Lord – oh, and didn’t I mention, I’m not so great at submission either. I’ve always worked a job…since before I’ve had a work permit…in college I worked 3 jobs to make ends meet, and try to pay school bills. Can anyone relate?

Be Still

It happened this week, as I was reading some Scriptures – have you ever been unable to get a really convicting verse out of your head until you read that passage? Well, I couldn’t turn my brain off until I began to read Psalm 46. Verse 10 says, “Be still and know that I am God.” The words “be still” struck me in a new way. I thought, “But I don’t know how to be still.”

Continue reading “How I’m Learning to Be Still”

Portrait of a Strong Woman – Part 2

In the first part of this series, we talked about a virtuous woman…and more specifically wife.
In the second part of the Portrait of a Strong Woman, we’ll be learning more about her work.

A Strong Woman works.

Ok, so we will probably touch on the controversial question should a woman work inside or outside the home….To be honest, that’s not an important issue. I don’t believe that working inside or outside the home makes a woman more or less godly. The real issue is work ethic.

“She seeks wool and flax, and willingly works with her hands. She is like the merchant ships. She brings her food from afar. She also rises while it is yet night, and provides food for her household…” Proverbs 31:13-14
She’s got a work ethic. I’m reminded of Ruth and Esther in this instance. These real women had real jobs. They didn’t have the attitude that they were above working. Instead they approached their jobs as God-given responsibilities. 
Ruth had to break out of her comfort zone and depend on the ultimate Provider, God. Who not only blessed her to put food on her table, but also place her in the line of the Messiah.

Esther, had a position that while, not necessarily political in and of itself, gave her a sphere of influence that saved the lives of millions of people. All because she was resourceful and willing to be used by God.

How many times have we as women, and guys this goes for you too, battled the mindset that we’re just doing a job. I know holding down the same job for months and years can be  so tiring…but that’s the part where we need God to carry us. I know that I will not excel in every aspect of my job naturally….that’s why it’s called work. This being said, I pray that God will remind me that I’m a work in progress. 

The perfectionist mindset will only hold you captive. Please, strive for excellence, but know that we all have things to work on, including our attitudes toward work and work environments. Remember, “whatever you do, do unto the Lord, not as unto men.” There are days when the Holy Spirit has to majorly convict me in this area.

Work is important, but if we rely solely on our own abilities, we’ll become bogged down with worry. Jesus said, “My yoke is easy, and My burden is light.” That’s because He carries it for us and beside us, whether we feel like he’s there or not. 

Fired Up and Ready to Go!

Here I am writing to you now…Micah and I have really gotten fired up this weekend! My heart is full! There’s a lot of reasons, but a very big one is that our band, These City Walls, and Micah’s dad’s band are joining together to form a canned food drive for CUOC, Christians United Outreach Center, a local ministry that has fallen on tough times. Because 33% of children in Randolph County are food insecure, we felt led to do something. This post is not to make us or our band, These City Walls, hyper-spiritual sounding, but the more people that help, the better, and trust me, we can’t do this by ourselves!   James 2:15-16 says, “Suppose a brother or a sister is without clothes and daily food. If one of you says to them, “Go in peace; keep warm and well fed,” but does nothing about their physical needs, what good is it?” The concert proceed, non-perishables will go toward feeding the hungry in our community! It’s not about the money, honey! Please spread the word as we prepare for this event. Times are tough, but that doesn’t mean we can’t spread hope for the broken. 
Okay, So that’s my Monday morning soapbox.  

It was great to have such a refreshing weekend, and to get to spend time with my husband, I must confess, I’ve had a few problems, with dreaming big the past couple of years, but not anymore. I don’t want to waste my life wondering what I could’ve done with it. We went swing dancing Saturday night in Winston Salem and I got to dance more last on Saturday than I have in years! So much fun! I even got to dance with one of the teachers, and he said I did great! Man, was I on cloud nine! My sweet husband knew that going swing dancing would be just the thing for us to get away and just let our hair down. I’ve got a full writing docket the next couple of weeks, but I’m super excited that I get to use this gift so much, because that’s what it is, a gift. Just like our bodies are a gift. Why waste time, tearing them down, when we can build them up? When I was dancing, I was so glad that I strength train, because we were doing Lindyhop, and let me tell you Lindyhop is no joke! So, don’t waste time procrastinating with your fitness goals!!!! Now, I love fitness, but I don’t live for fitness. I stay fit so that I can live a healthy life, and serve God and minister to others. Oh and here’s a vid of the “Shim Sham”. It’s the Cupid Shuffle of swing dance. lol!
Happy Monday!

Oh, and By the way, today is my first link-up, so share the love and help our your fellow bloggers!Oh and you can still enter to win the Mash-Up Conditioning dvd today!

Monday Motivation: Stepping Out; Being Brave

The next 21 days are important for Micah and I. We’re taking some time to seriously pray about the next steps we’re supposed to take in certain areas of our lives. He’s just finished school, and needs a job, so we’re praying that the right doors are opened up for him, and about my return to school. I start filling out applications in the next few days, and I’m excited, yet nervous. Nutrition is no easy peasy degree, and after that, I want to go to grad school. I’ve also been praying about singing classically on a pro level again, which thrills and terrifies me at the same time! These are just a few of the decisions we are going to be making personally during this next year. This isn’t about a wish list. It’s about the desires God’s put in my heart, and the desire to be brave enough to step out in faith. Ooooh that’s a tough one for me. I like my comfort zone. But I know the more I push, the more He’s going to pull me out of that zone. Faith is an action, not a feeling! I pray with expectation, knowing that sometimes, God doesn’t need to change my surroundings, He needs to change me. What do you need to step out in faith on? It could be relationships, finances, health, or whatever. Start preparing yourself by developing an “attitude of gratitude”. Flexibility in situations is something that I need to work on. So, I’m taking steps to learn to control how stressed I become when these situations arise.This is a great quote by Jim Elliot.If you’ve never read Through the Gates of Splendor you should. There is an incredible story behind this man’s family and the lives they changed for God forever.

See you soon!