My first memory of Easter was when I lived with my mom. I heard a knock at the door, and she told me to see who it was, which was weird, I thought because I’m a little kid and we aren’t supposed to open the door, but I went. I found an easter basket with eggs to paint and candy. I spent the afternoon painting the eggs.
Growing up, we didn’t have Easter traditions, although I remember going to church on Easter Sunday after my dad married my stepmom. We attended Catholic mass, and it was always packed, but on Easter Sunday, it was out the door packed. We would dress up more formally than our usual Sunday Church wear, and then afterward, we would get together with the family. Well, I guess in a sense, that was our Easter tradition.
One year, my grandma hosted an Easter egg hunt, but it was with real eggs. LOL, that got messy. However, it was only for that one year. I low-key wished we would have done it again because I had fun.
I never believed in the Easter bunny, nor did I ever care for Easter baskets because that’s not what Easter was about for us. Easter is about celebrating the resurrection of Jesus Christ.
To write this blog post, I wanted to learn about the history of “Easter,” like where the name came from, etc., so I googled and found an article on History.com. They wrote, “Easter is a Christian holiday that celebrates the belief in the resurrection of Jesus Christ.” I already knew, but I also wanted to find out why the Passover was no longer celebrated, but Easter is, and here is what they said. It states that Easter is associated with the Jewish holiday of Passover, and the links are seen in the Last Supper. The last supper happened the night before Jesus was arrested, and it was essentially a Passover feast. But during the last supper, Jesus broke bread with his 12 apostles and said the bread represented His body, and the wine they drank was His blood.
With this being done, this became a basis for the Christian ritual of Holy Communion and gave a new significance by Jesus. All of this occurred during the Passover celebration, even Jesus’s execution.
Now, where does the name Easter come from? The article states, “St. Bede the Venerable, the 6-century author of Ecclesiastical History of the English People,” informed that the word Easter comes from Eostre or the Anglo-Saxon goodness of spring and fertility. And many of the non-Christian traditions of Easter, like the bunny and Easter eggs, can be traced from pagan celebrations. Eggs supposedly represent fertility and birth. The bunny may also associate birth and renewal (like Jesus’ resurrection or re-birth).
We usually take my daughter to the Easter celebration our church hosts every year for Easter. We attend church on Easter Sunday and then go out for lunch or get together with the family to celebrate.
It was fun learning about Easter and its association with the Passover. It’s crazy how you can read the Bible many times, and many things can go over one’s head before someone else points it out, and you have a revelation. Sometimes it’s God himself.
Do you celebrate Easter? Do you have any Easter traditions? Do you celebrate Passover? Let me know!
It’s never easy to deal with the death of a loved one. Whether it’s a sudden death or an illness, it’s not easy. I’ve written about grief before, and I’ll write about grief again because once we lose a loved one to death, we never stop grieving.
I don’t like to say that it gets easier with time because it doesn’t. What happens is that life goes on, and once we feel strong again, we learn to cope with the pain. We learn to live with the void inside us, but the grief is always with us.
If you’ve lost a parent, spouse, grandparent, friend, child, or even a pet, you know grief. Because grief is grief, I would never take away from someone’s pain by saying that losing a parent is more painful than losing a spouse. No! I will empathize with them and try to provide comfort in any way. However, the only way to honestly know how someone feels when it comes to grief is if you’ve been there yourself.
Today I want to bring you Bible verses that have helped me in my time of grieving. In a way to bring you hope during this difficult time. God didn’t promise us a painless life, but He did promise to be with us in every situation, even when we grieve.
Joshua 1:9 NIV – Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged, for the Lord your God will be with you wherever you go.
Psalm 147:3 NIV – He heals the brokenhearted and binds up their wounds.
Psalm 34:18 NIV – The Lord is close to the brokenhearted and saves those who are crushed in spirit.
This verse reminds me of a blog post I read that mentioned how beautiful grief is because that means you really loved that person, and up until that point, I had not thought about grief as being beautiful. And this verse says that we who mourn are blessed.
This verse is a reminder from the Apostle Paul that all our sufferings on Earth will be rewarded.
It’s hard to be encouraged or have hope that things will be okay again when we are dealing with grief, but we must remind ourselves to go through the emotions that come with grief to come out on the other side.
On the other side of grief, we have remembrance of our loved ones. We have beautiful memories and moments with them. Stories to share with others, pictures, and videos to keep their memory alive. Their legacy lives on in you.
I want to end this by reminding you that you are not alone in this journey. God is with you, and He loves you. There are others around you who can be there for support. I am here, and you can connect with me if you need someone to listen. You are not alone.
Hello friends! Today I’m bringing you a guest post. It’s a devotional written by Detria Moore J.D., and it is powerful! When she sent this devotional to me, I didn’t know how much I needed to read this! Motherhood is challenging, rewarding, yet hard, and this is a beautiful reminder that there is a reason why we were called to this.
I pray that this devotional fills you the way it filled me and touches all the mothers who need encouragement right now. Amen.
Peace for Today’s Mothers
What’s a mom to do in 2022? Somedays, managing a household resembles running a corporation. I sometimes feel like I need project management experience to hold it together and keep it running smoothly. I need spreadsheets to figure out the logistics of getting everyone to and from all their activities and an assistance to take my calls. As a mother, you often make decisions that impact your entire family. Do you homeschool or send them to school outside the home? Do you work outside the home or work full-time as a stay-at-home mom? What is the magic number of extracurricular activities to have per child? How many play dates are optimal? When do you step in and intervene in the roller coaster ride of your teenager’s life, and when do you let them figure it out? And the never-ending question…what ARE you cooking for dinner tonight?
For a season, I thought I could have it all. I thought I could be the most devoted hands-on mom, work outside the home to help support my family, volunteer at all the things in the community, be a Sunday school teacher, workout at the gym four times a week, keep my kids in fun-filled activities, have the most dedicated, intentional family time, cook nothing but health-conscious food, read the Bible in a year, and still go on Girlfriend Getaways every year. Can I just say this led to utter disappointment? But I mused, “Aren’t I the modern-day Proverbs 31 woman? Doesn’t Philippians 4:13 say I can do all things through Him who strengthens me?” So, I prayed to God for more strength. But that was not the answer.
The kind that surpasses all understanding, I needed peace that what He’s called me to do was enough and that I would be okay without everything else.
Who said that we had to have it all? And what does that even look like? The truth is we make choices. And choosing one thing, whatever that thing is, by default means we’re NOT doing something else. This can lead us to question our decisions. When I homeschooled my children, I thought I was missing out and utilizing my full potential. When I worked outside the home, I thought I was sacrificing family time. I wasn’t at peace. At some point, we all question whether we’re doing the right things for our families and for ourselves. We may even question if we’re being a good mother. But as you balance motherhood and all that comes along with it, I pray the following for you:
I pray that you are at peace. Be at peace for whatever He’s calling you to do in this season. Your job as a mother to your children won’t look like anyone else’s. What God has called you to is unique to you and His purpose for you and your family. Look at these prominent women in the Bible. They each had a unique calling. Deborah was a judge; she was not a queen like Esther. Anna was a prophet; she was not a teacher like Priscilla. My prayer is that in motherhood, you will find YOUR calling, whatever that uniquely looks like for you. Don’t look to the left or right at how it looks for others. The God who holds the world together has placed unique gifts, talents, and desires inside of you. YOU HAVE A PURPOSE!
I pray that you experience joy in mothering. Sometimes mothering can be difficult. Two mothers, sleepy yet awake at 1 am—one nursing her newborn, the other waiting for a teenager who’s missed curfew. Nether seem joyous at the moment. But when you realize God has specifically entrusted YOU with raising and imparting to your children, I pray you’ll find the joy of the Lord to be your strength. Don’t let motherhood so burden you that you miss the joy of raising your precious children.
I pray that you constantly cover your family in prayer. As mothers, we help set the tone of our homes. Life and death are in our tongues. Speak and pray over your family. And don’t forget YOU! Pray for yourself, your time, your emotions. Pray that God will manifest each and every gift He’s placed in you. Pray constantly that your family will walk in Godliness. Speak life into them.
Motherhood isn’t for the faint of heart. But if God has called you, He’ll most certainly equip you. Walk in peace today, knowing that God is with you and has never forsaken you.
Wasn’t this devotional so fulfilling? I absolutely loved having Detria as a guest blogger and I hope to collaborate again in the future. Thank you again Detria for this amazing devotional.
Detria Moore is a believer, wife to one, mother of two, college professor, intercessor, community servant, writer, speaker, and volunteer of all things. Above all else, she is enamored with her Savior. Her main goal is to serve the Lord, walk in a manner worthy of her calling, and bring glory to her Savior. If, along the way, she can pray with and encourage other women to grow in their own faith, or keep them encouraged to walk with Christ, then mission accomplished! Detria writes and podcasts at detriamoore.com and she enjoys reading and teaching the Bible, praying for others, walking the Lynchburg trails.
And if you are interested in guest writing for my blog please contact me! I would LOVE to work with you.
We are all sinners, every single one of us. Some people may forget that they sin too when they judge others for their sins; nevertheless, we are all sinners. Many haven’t pursued a relationship with Jesus because they think they have to be sinless, which is impossible, my friend. Maybe the reason is that they believe they have to be perfect or have their life together before seeking Jesus. Thinking, after I complete this in my life, then maybe Jesus will accept me.
Well, I’m here to tell you that Jesus wants you to seek him and come to him right now! Just like you are. He doesn’t want you to change anything before you seek Him. He loves you just the way you are!
Jesus himself says in Matthew chapter 11 verse 28 (NIV), “Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest.” And He also says, in Matthew chapter 7 verse 7 (NIV), “Ask and it will be given to you; seek and you will find; knock and the door will be opened.
Now, after you start gaining a relationship with Him, getting to know Him and His word, you’ll change. You’ll want to change. Things that you used to do; you might not want to do anymore. Things you used to pursue or thought you needed; you realize you don’t really care for that anymore. The first is starts with repentance. Jesus tells us, “I have not come to call the righteous, but sinners to repentance” (Luke 5:32 NIV). Repentance is being remorseful and asking forgiveness for our past sins. If you genuinely ask for forgiveness, Jesus will forgive you.
Then, you’ll accept Jesus as your Lord and savior. Romans 10:9-10, (NIV), “If you declare with your mouth, “Jesus is Lord,” and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved.” That’s it!!! There is no complicated formula, no hurdles, or obstacles you need to go through to be saved.
Next, you have to renew your mind. “Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is – his good, pleasing and perfect will” (Romans 12:2 NIV). As a follower of Christ, you are called to be different, not follow the norms of this world, because you are in this world, but you are not of this world. You are a child of God!
And lastly, you should continue a relationship with Him. This is done by continually reading The Bible, praying, and worshiping. You’ll be amazed at the transformation He does in your life. How much peace you’ll have in your heart and joy in your soul.
Jesus loves you, no matter what! That’s how great his love is for you. And I wanted to remind you that you don’t have to have everything together before seeking Him. Even if you accepted Him as your savior years ago and you got off track, come back to Him today. He will accept you because He loves you! And I love you also, friend!
Hello Friends! I am bringing you another amazing guest post and this time from my friend Odile Arisel Perez. She is is a wife, teacher, editor, translator, entrepreneur, and published author, who loves sharing her love for Jesus with others. Odile has a Master’s Degree from the London School of Economics in Global Politics and an undergrad from Rollins College in International Business and Spanish. She co-leads a women’s ministry called Intentional W with her cousin, Dr. Ingrid Atiles. Odile is passionate about empowering women in business, building God-centered communities, teaching children, and serving God. In her free time, Odile loves swimming, writing, and worshipping. Her favorite scripture is Jeremiah 29:11.
I met Odile at the church I attend and we also were part of the same growth group a few years back and has been a good friend of mine since then. It was such an honor when she said yes to guest write on my blog! And I hope her devotional speaks to you as much as it spoke to me the first time I read it. Well here is her devotional…..ENJOY!!
How often do we replay in our minds our failed relationships, our rejections, our unsuccessful adventures, and everything in our lives that hasn’t work out? We spend an endless amount of time toiling with the useless “what ifs.” Inevitably, those replays lead us down a road of self-doubt, insecurity, emptiness, and into a paralyzing fear that prevents us from trying or even believing again.
This is where I found myself a couple of years ago. A lot of things in my life were crumbling. Doors kept shutting, my business was caving like a collapsing roof after a storm, and I felt stagnant.
I must admit that I got stuck believing the biggest lie ever, that I was a failure! Even though I was walking with God and faithfully seeking Him, I was still afraid to try again. Paralyzed in my comfort zone, I buried my dreams. Recovering from the damage caused by believing in those lies of defeat took me several years.
Yet, the more I surrendered my plans to God, prayed fervently, and counseled with my spiritual mentors, the stronger my faith and courage became (Joshua 1:9). With time, God taught me that our failures, which I now like to call “teaching moments,” are simply experiences that shape us, build our character, and redirect us toward God. He reminded me that we are not our failures and that our failures don’t define us nor determine our worth. Failures are simply opportunities to learn how to walk humbly with our God and seek His guidance when facing life’s adversities (Micah 6:8).
But how can we wholeheartedly believe that our failures do not define us? In this season, I learned that we can change what we believe about failure by intentionally seeking the Lord and by DREAMing again.
D– Draw upon the lessons. Draw upon the lessons gained from those “failures.” Take some time to reflect on these questions: What did God teach me through this experience? What could I do differently next time? How can I maintain a greater dependence on God? The purpose of reflection is not to dwell on the old wounds but rather to identify the lessons that God is trying to teach us and give thanks to our Father for transforming us by renewing our minds (Romans 12:2, Philippians 4:8).
R– Reconnect with God. Anchoring ourselves in who our Creator God says we are, is critically important (Psalm 139:4). His view of us is everlasting. His view of us is the truth. Connecting with Him in intimacy awakens our dreams and gives us peace that surpasses all understanding (Philippians 4:7). When we reconnect with God and say, “Father, I need you” and “I cannot do this without you,” He exalts Himself through us, and our breakthroughs begin (2 Corinthians 12:9-11).
E– Envision. God deposits ideas, dreams, and visions within us. After a defeat or failure, we tend to ignore our God-given dreams and vision. Rather than ignoring them, we have to envision them, write them out and make them visible (Habakkuk 2:2). Envisioning our dreams reminds us to pursue our calling and live out our God-given purpose.
A-Act. Take action, one step at a time, and every time you act, put on the armor of God (Ephesians 6). Taking action, fully protected by God, increases our faith, courage, and trust in God’s plans. Ultimately, we realize that with God, we have all that we need to overcome (John 14:8, 1 John 4:4, Philippians 4:13, 4:19).
M- Meditate. As you take action, meditate on the Word of God. The Word gives us peace and wisdom. The Word guards our hearts and keeps us focused on heavenly things (Hebrews 4:12). Spending time in the Word changes our discouragement into encouragement and provides all the light that we need to see the path ahead clearly (Psalm 119:105).
While failing is part of life, the truth is that you are not a failure. You are a conqueror, and even if you fall, you will once again soar on wings like an eagle (Isaiah 40:31). Reigniting the warrior in you may take some time, but with God, all things are possible (Matthew 19:26). As you move forward, strip failures’ power over you and choose to see failure as a teacher, not a definer. Faithfully continue to DREAM: Draw upon His lessons; Reconnect with Him; Envision; Act; Meditate.
Remember, you are not your failures; you are indeed an overcomer in Jesus Christ! As His precious children, let’s share with the world our “overcoming” testimony (James 1:12).
WOW!! What a word! Thank you, once again, Odile for this amazing message.
Happy Friday Friends! I am bringing you another wonderful guest post, this time I am hosting Tona!! She heads an online Christian boutique (calledtoedify.com) and sells inspirational gifts and apparel; while sending portions of the stores proceeds to The Voice of the Martyrs ministry to help place a Bible in the hands of every Christian believer worldwide. Tona holds a bachelor’s degree (Biology) and master’s degree (Education) from Mount Mary University.
You can read her full bio at the end of this post. Today she is sharing 5 ways to be intentional in our walk with Christ and this post is dear to me because earlier this year, I wrote about my word for the year, which is intentional, you can read my post here. I wrote about how I was going to be intentional with my time with Jesus and this post extends from that and can help you also get intentional with Jesus.
Knowing how to slow down and “be intentional” is a process that happens over time. For many individuals, slowing down involves practical habits that take a little determination to initiate and maintain. However, being intentional about these five tasks can help you feel closer to the Lord in a more meaningful way and enrich your walk with him. The five ways we can be intentional in our walk with Christ is through prayer, reading the bible, worship, serving others, and fellowship with other believes.
Prayer is the first thing you need to be intentional about in your walk with Christ. In today’s culture, people think that being spiritual means not needing God. This is a lie from Satan. One way to be intentional about your relationship with the Lord is by practicing prayer daily. It does not have to be elaborate, just a simple conversation with Him. When we pray, we can pray about our family, friends, family, repentant prayers, our nation, and ourselves. It is also important when we pray to make sure that we are writing down all the answers to our prayers.
Ephesians 6:18NIV And pray in the Spirit on all occasions with all kinds of prayers and requests. With this in mind, be alert and always keep on praying for all the Lord’s people.
2. Reading the Bible
Reading the Bible is the second way to be intentional about your walk with Christ. This involves creating a sacred space and time to have deep fellowship with the Lord. As believers, our relationship with the Lord is vital to our lives and needs to be cultivated over time. As we immerse ourselves in the word, we will then start to be transformed into his likeness. Writing down the things that the Lord is revealing through his word is a great way to remember and practice what we read.
2 Timothy 3:16-17NIV All Scripture is God-breathed and is useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting and training in righteousness, so that the servant of God may be thoroughly equipped for every good work.
Worship is the third way to be intentional when you are growing in your walk with the Lord. Having time dedicated to praise and worship not only in community but also when you are at home, in the car driving, exercising, cooking and any other place you may find yourself. Worship is truly a part of everything we do. We not only worship the Lord through songs, hymns, and psalms, but we do it with our lives daily. Everything we do is for His glory.
Colossians 3:14-17NIV And over all these virtues put on love, which binds then all together in perfect unity. Let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts, since as members of one body you were called to peace. And be thankful. Let the message of Christ dwell among you richly as you each and admonish one another with all wisdom through psalms, hymns, and songs from the Spirit, singing to God with gratitude in your hearts. And whatever you do, whether in word or deed, do it all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through him.
4. Serving Others
Serving others is the fourth way to be intentional in growing in your walk with Christ. It is important to really see, hear, and meet the needs of others that you consistently encounter. Jesus always meets our needs, and because we are to be imitators of him, we should seek to serve others in the same way. It can be through prayer, spending our time, meeting a specific need they may have, or simply being a listening ear.
Matthew 25:35-40NIV For I was hungry and you gave me something to eat, I was thirsty and you gave me something to drink, I was a stranger and you invited me in, I needed clothes and you clothed me, I was sick and you looked after me, I was in prison and you came to visit me.’
“Then the righteous will answer him, ‘Lord, when did we see you hungry and feed you, or thirsty and give you something to drink? When did we see you a stranger and invite you in, or needing clothes and clothe you? When did we see you sick or in prison and go to visit you?’ “The King will reply, ‘Truly I tell you, whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers and sisters of mine, you did for me.’
5. Fellowship with Others
Fellowship with others is one of the last ways to be more intentional in your walk with Christ. Fellowship is so vital to the Christian life, and it can be done through virtual or in-person church services, group bible studies, meeting for coffee dates, or retreats. There are many ways to fellowship with fellow sisters in Christ, and it is imperative for our overall growth as a Christian.
Hebrews 10:25NIV not giving up meeting together, as some are in the habit of doing, but encouraging one another—and all the more as you see the Day approaching.
I pray this list of five ways to be intentional in your walk with Christ gave you something to meditate and reflect on today. Are there any other ways that you can be intentional in your walk with the Lord that was not mentioned here? If you have any other ways, please leave them in the comments.
Thank you Tona for this list of ways to be intentional with Christ!
Here is her bull bio
Co-Founder/Director, Digital Marketing and Social Media
Tona is responsible for providing support and education to HAYWOOD SBS (www.haywoodsbs.com) contractors and employees. She is also charged with managing the innovation of the HAYWOOD SBS business model as a whole. Overall, Tona works to ensure HAYWOOD SBS clients are provided with the proper digital marketing tools, tactics, coaching and support they need to remain top amongst their competitors. Tona also recently started a Facebook group called Digital Marketing Strategies, Solutions, and Support For Busy Solopreneurs.
Prior to joining HAYWOOD SBS on a full-time basis, Tona was a High School science teacher for 16 years. She was known for her successful integration of technology in the classroom that not only helped her students become more engaged, but enabled them to begin to take more control over their own learning.
Hello lovely readers! I am so excited to bring you another guest post by another amazing writer. Her name is Nicole Gyimah also known as Cole and Coco. She is a soccer mom, adoring peppermint everything, fruit smoothies, connecting, and creating. She has worked in Publishing for 24 years, and also taught at Seton Hall University College of Communication and the Arts. She loves living passionately with purpose in Maryland with her husband and children. Please enjoy this post by Nicole.
Sitting at our six-month pulmonologist appointment, I said to myself, “we’ve come a long way.” Isaiah is truly thriving. He loves reading Dog Man and Diary of a Wimpy Kid books, adores mini-golf, romping with others, and does well in school. He is athletic, playing the wing position for his soccer team. Thanks to his big sister, Dylan, he enjoys watching anime. As his 10th birthday, May 28th, approaches, he enthusiastically lives as an animated videogame player. He talks to himself, yet is a friend making gift from God. Observing him interact with the doctor, doing his breathing tests, answering questions, explaining what he physically feels is a dream come true. For earlier in his life-at 16 months old to be exact, we were afraid we would lose him.
Nine Years Ago:
Sunday, September 16, 2012, he spent the bright, beautiful afternoon playing vigorously in the backyard with his sisters. That evening we ate dinner, did bath and bedtime, and then it happened. I heard him coughing, crying, and as I checked on him, I knew something wasn’t right. I screamed to my husband that we needed to get him to the emergency room. Once there, they immediately transferred him to the pediatric ICU.
A sincere, kind, intelligent doctor-the head of PICU-advised he was suffering from a severe asthma attack and that if we hadn’t gotten him there when we did, he might not have made it. He had to be intubated. We were not expecting this or the 10-day hospital admission accompanying it. I crumbled. We were devastated. To me, we had failed him. There were no warning signs or instructions for how to be in that moment, and there were none in our circle who had experienced a chronic condition on this scale with their children—lacking understanding. No direction. Terrified. Why us, why our baby? Why Asthma?
Isn’t this how life’s challenges impact us? We ask difficult questions. Why me, why my family? Does God care? Does the Lord understand how I feel? The Bible teaches yes, He cares (1Peter 5:6-7) and recognizes how we feel more than anyone (Hebrews 4:15); however, my query continued. I wondered now what do we do? And then one day in the hospital trying to make sense of it all, thinking and praying on next steps, the Holy Spirit asked me a question, Why not us? Would I choose another child or family to endure the pain? No way! As Christians, we are empowered to choose a better perspective, response and outlook so we can experience grace through the suffering. “Yet if any man suffer as a Christian, let him not be ashamed; but let him glorify God on this behalf” (1 Peter 4:16, KJV). At that second, I knew I wanted to help anyone undergoing the lonely, frightening frustration of a story like ours. It was time to look for the good that will come out of the bad (Romans 8:28).
Hope, Intent, Action:
I knew each incident had not been in vain. The pain had intention. Being vulnerable, uncertainty, not knowing how it will work out is difficult. It’s also a part of the faith walk. Instead of focusing on the trouble, I wanted to go after the purpose.
“The Lord is on my side; I will not fear. What can man do to me?” (Psalm 118:6)
After this initial incident and by Isaiah’s fourth or fifth asthma-related hospital stay, I had the revelation that we (his family) had asthma; asthma didn’t have us. It was time to go to work, not just for our benefit but for humanity. God led us to families like us who were managing asthma. Initially, I was creating flyers for Children’s National Hospital, Washington D.C., and for their community events focused on raising consciousness for Asthma awareness month (which happens to be May). And during an emergency room visit, we discovered IMPACT DC Asthma Clinic, “an award-winning pediatric asthma program in Washington, D.C., directed by Dr. Steven Teach.” Through IMPACT DC, we were taught best practices for managing asthma, and they helped us recognize Isaiah’s triggers. We were able to collaborate on asthma advocacy efforts, share our story, championing for ourselves and others. In addition to partnering with Children’s Hospital/IMPACT DC, other volunteer opportunities opened. Since then, I’ve worked with the Asthma and Allergy Foundation of America and currently partner with the BUILD HEALTH Challenge as the Parent Team Lead for the Healthy Together Medical-Legal Partnership for improving asthma in D.C. and to improve health in D.C. by enhancing community resilience.
Asthma remains a part of our story. Choosing faith over fear does too. What do your faith over fear moments look like? Psalm 27:1 asks, “The Lord is my light and my salvation; Whom shall I fear? The Lord is the strength of my life; Of whom shall I be afraid?” This is an absolute comfort! God has promised to protect, never leave nor forsake us. How can I not choose faith over fear? I’m so thankful for our journey. Although it’s been challenging, the adversity has presented growth, development, and opportunity. I’ve reconciled it’s ok to not be ok. But we can’t stay there. Don’t hold back. Face the circumstances. Be Bold. Afraid? Good. You’re headed in the right direction.
Wow! What a moving story! Thank you so much Nicole for sharing with us your faith over fear story. We all are dealing with something that sometimes makes us fearful but we need to remember that our God is bigger than anything and everything. I hope you would like to collaborate again in the future.
If you would like to connect with Nicole I will include her social media handles and if you would like to guest post on my blog you can reach out to me by email or my “contact” page. Let’s work together!
This past weekend I attended the Lifeway Women Live conference for the third time. You can read about my first time attending in 2019 here. Last year, the conference was virtual, and our church hosted it, but we met on Zoom. This year our church hosted again but physically at the church, and I loved it. I loved being with other Women of God pursuing Christ together, worshiping together, and praying over each other!
Angie Smith was the host this year, and I believe she did the first session, but since Lifeway was having some technical difficulties at the beginning of the conference, we weren’t able to hear her speak. I was looking forward to hearing Jamie Ivey’s message, but she and her family have been dealing with COVID, so prayers for them.
The worship band was Austin Stone Worship. And musical guest was Point of Grace, I had never heard of them before this conference, but apparently, they were popular in the 90s. Let me know if you listen to their songs or have heard of them. 🙂
The first message that stood out to me was Kristi McLelland. She asked, “What is your relationship with silence?” She wanted us to think if we try to avoid silence if we try to fill it, do we reach for our phones, and what gets stirred up inside us when there is silence? I found this question profound, and it got me thinking of doing a blog post about it. She tied the message by saying that what gets stirred up inside of us when there is silence is what we need to work on. Jesus can help us, but it’s up to us to want to get well.
The second message that stood out to me was Lisa Harper’s. Her message stemmed from Luke 11: 5-13, and this passage talks about seeking and you shall find and how the Lord will provide more. She mentioned that God always provides more than we could ever imagine and to always Aim towards Jesus. At one point during her message, she wanted us to lay hands on each other and pray. At this time, two ladies came up to me, we laid hands on each other, and prayed. That prayer was so powerful, and I felt the presence of God so profoundly that I felt like I wasn’t in the conference anymore. Also, I took over the prayer at one point, and I didn’t even have to think about what to say next; the words were flowing out of me!
The last message that stood out to me was Jackie Hill Perry’s. She had three points:
The tongue is accountable
The tongue is powerful
The tongue is inconsistent
Now, when it comes to Jackie, I didn’t take many notes because the way she speaks has me captivated the whole time that I forget to write. I did write one thing she said, “words can hurt, but words can heal.” This reminded me of a blog post about word selection I wrote back in 2019 because words do hold much weight, and words are very powerful. Whether used for good or evil, words have power. I always try to say positive and encouraging things to others and myself because I’m not too fond of negative energy. I find it very draining.
Overall, the conference was refreshing and empowering. Since the first one I’ve attended, I love conferences and have attended writing and speaking conferences too. Jackie Hill Perry has a conference coming up later on this year, and one of the cities she will be at is Atlanta, which I would love to attend.
Have you attended a Lifeway Women conference before? If so, what was your experience? Maybe you have attended another conference, let me know about that one; I’d love to hear all about your experience.
The pain is real, and the void is deep. The tears will come and go but release them whenever they come. The memories will play in your head; share them. You’ll want to laugh and then cry right after, that’s okay. Pictures and videos are treasures. Their belongings are sentimental. The time spent with them hold it close to your heart. And don’t be afraid to express how you feel.
Our time on Earth is extremely precious because it is so short. The pain and sufferings we go through are all part of the journey of life. Unfortunately, there will be tears, but there are also many joys. There is a lot to be celebrated. Hold your loved ones close and never take for granted a minute of your life. Tell the people you love that you love them and what they mean to you because once they are gone, they cannot hear you.
We don’t know anything about the “afterlife.” We have many theories and beliefs, but no one has come back from the dead to tell us what happens, not even Jesus told us what exactly happens after we pass, just that if we believe we will have eternal life with him. We have this hope we hold on to that we will see our loved ones again. That we will meet them later, don’t lose that hope. Because no matter what happens afterward, it cannot be like the suffering and the pain we experience on Earth.
I know it hurts now, and as time goes on, it will not go “away,” but it will be easier to bear the void and pain because you will learn how to live with it. Because after you experience grief, you are never the same.
Hello friends! I am so excited about today’s blog because it is my first time hosting a guest writer on my blog!!! I am beyond excited to host such a fantastic writer/author Alexis A. Goring; she “is a passionate writer with a degree in Print Journalism and an MFA in Creative Writing. She loves the art of storytelling and hopes that her stories will connect readers with the enduring, forever love of Jesus Christ”.
Please enjoy this devotional by Alexis A. Goring!
There’s this beautiful song by Juanita Bynum in which she declares that she doesn’t mind waiting on the Lord! She says that it is an honor to wait on Him. She tells the listener that sometimes in life, you will face situations where you don’t know what to do or who to turn to and you see that no human can help you. But that’s when she reminds us about God’s promise to all those who wait on Him.
You can read about that promise in Isaiah 40:31 and be encouraged that no matter what you may face in this life, you always can turn to God and He will help you. God has all the answers! Not only does He know your every need; He is perfectly capable of meeting each one (Philippians 4:19)! And He always does meet your needs and grant the desires of your heart that are according to His will … in His perfect time.
My maternal grandmother used to say, “God may not come when you want Him to but He’s always on time!” The older I get and the more seasoned by life situations I become, the more I remember her words that she spoke when she was alive, and the more I realize she was right!
But sometimes when I listen to this song “I Don’t Mind Waiting,” my inner dialogue with God admits, “But Lord, sometimes I do mind waiting!” My conversations about waiting with God hit on core issues that most young adults in America and around the world face.
Conversations that touch on topics like landing a job that you trained for (or in some cases, especially during this pandemic, any job that pays the bills and keeps you afloat financially). If you’re single and believe in marriage then you’re wondering when you’ll get married. If you’re married but struggling to have children or have suffered miscarriages then you’re wondering when you and your spouse will have a baby. If you’re widowed then you may be wondering if you’re ever going to find true love again. If you’re elderly and the people who you loved through life have all died then you’re wondering if you’re next. If you’re still growing up then you’re wondering when you’ll be able old enough to do all the things you’ve seen adults do (though you’re probably not dreaming about having to pay bills, support yourself financially, manage a home, and hold down a steady job). Point is: We’re all waiting on someone or something. The good news is, when you wait on the Lord you will not be disappointed because He always comes through on time. The Bible says the He will never leave you nor forsake you (Hebrews 13:5). The God of the Universe is also the Maker of your heart and He loves you with all of His Heart.
Now when someone loves you with all of their heart, and they have a proven track record of taking care of you then you don’t have to worry, right? Well, if that person is a mere mortal then yes, you do need to worry because only God cannot fail (Matthew 19:26). We as humans try our best to be there for people who we love and a lot (not all) of us try our best to keep our promises. However, we’re only human. Only God is completely capable of being there for us 24/7/365. Only God will never lie to us (Numbers 23:19). Only God keeps all of His promises that you can read about in His Word (The Holy Bible). Therefore, we can conclude that God is trustworthy.
As life teaches you more lessons and you grow up in your walk with the Lord, you will see that you can wait on Him and you can trust Him. You will learn to be content with what you have and be at peace wherever He’s put you. Patience will grow within you like a small seed planted deep in soil and over time, that seed will sprout into a deeply rooted tree that is tall, strong and unmoved by the winds and strife of life. Why? Because you were deeply rooted in God’s Word. You rely on His promises so you know you have nothing to fear. And as you wait on the Lord and He “shows up and shows out” for you, then you will see firsthand that His timing is perfect!
Please be encouraged to know God loves you, He’ll never leave you, and rest assured that He will always come through for you in every way. It may not be on your timetable (who are we to tell the King of the Universe to adhere to our manmade schedules?) but it will be in in His perfect time.
In closing, I’d like for you to read this insightful article about why God’s timing is perfect.
And remember this quote:
“Be patient because God has perfect timing. Too often we forget just how big God really is…the same God that makes the stars shine and keeps the planets in motion loves you and knows exactly where and when you’ll be happiest. He’s always working for your good and only wants what’s best for you. God was, is and always will be … just trust Him and rest in His grace.” ~Author Unknown
Thank you so much Alexis for being a guest writer on my blog, I hope you will share more beautiful devotionals in the future. If you’d like to connect with Alexis I’ll share her social media handles. And if you’d like to be a guest contributor on my blog just send me an email, I’d love to collaborate with you!