It’s not about the person, but the PURPOSE

Sometimes we don’t believe in ourselves as much as God does.  We become discouraged when the actions of others don’t measure up to how we feel about our accomplishments or progress that we’ve made.  When we aren’t recognized in the manner we think that we deserve, in the manner that we would recognize others or when we aren’t recognized at all, we start to question ourselves and our abilities to continue on the path that we are on. Whether this is a path that we, ourselves have started on, or a path that God has created for us, a path is still a path.  The difference?  The path that God has created for us, is where he wants us to be.  He has created that path with us in mind.  Because this is true, whether we believe that we have what it takes to walk this path, and to endure all the obstacles that we could possibly face, or not, God has already gone before us and cleared the way.  All, we have to do is agree with him, and start walking. 

I don’t doubt for a second that writing is what God has led me to do.  Did I love writing before I knew that God would use me?  ABSOLUTELY!  This blog was physically created by me, but the content of it is all God.  Earlier, I was having a conversation via text with my niece regarding how I felt about people’s reactions to my blog posts.  Pause. Did anything from my previous statement stand out to you?  “I felt”.  I was in my feelings about how people chose to respond and/or if they chose to respond at all.  I truly had to stop myself and ask for forgiveness when God said “Why are you in your feelings about anything?  I’m using you, but it’s not about you.  It’s about me.”  

Let me go back a little to make sure that you get the full understanding of what I’m saying here.  In the past, I’ve felt (there it is again, my feelings.  They really do get you in trouble sometimes) as if I had gone unseen, unheard unappreciated, and looked over.  Because of this,  I questioned if I was good enough and even if what I did was good enough. I delayed creating this blog (delayed obedience…that’ll be in another post) because of my feelings.  I found myself questioning my abilities, and knowledge.  And all the reasons why I shouldn’t keep going came to mind.  What experience, or education do I have to do this?  And just like that, I talked myself out of doing something that I was called to do.  

 Getting back to the conversation that I had earlier, God totally stepped in and put me in check,  “Don’t you dare believe the lies of the enemy!!  He wants you to feel like you have nothing to say.  BUT YOU DO!  I HAVE GIVEN YOU EVERYTHING YOU NEED!!  He wants you to think you don’t have a voice so you will keep quiet. SPEAK!! FOR YOU HAVE BEEN QUIET TOO LONG!!  He wants you to stop doing my work because he knows that it is to glorify me.  SPEAK!!  YOU HAVE PURPOSE!! Even when you think you have nothing to say, open your mouth and my words will come out.  I preserved your life, so that I can use you to help save the lives of others.  DO NOT FEAR, I AM WITH YOU”.  

He took me to Jeremiah 1:4-10  Jeremiah was appointed by God as his prophet to the nations.  Even though he was appointed by God, he still doubted his ability to carry out the job he was given.  Because of his age, he thought nobody would listen.  Are you doubting your ability to carry out a job God has given you? Are you delaying your obedience out of fear and lack of faith? So many of us feel inadequate and struggle with what God calls us to do because our feelings get in the way, the enemy uses our weaknesses in a attempt to keep us quiet and to keep us from moving forward.  I want you to know that you aren’t alone.   My hope and prayer is that this reaches those who need to be reminded and encouraged to accept what God has given you and trust that whatever he has called you to do, not only will he equip you for it, but he will be with you every step of the way as well!!  Remember, it’s not about the person, it’s about the purpose!!  🙂

God is love,

Tricia 

*** A special thank you to my beautiful niece who not only reminded and encouraged me, but gave me the title for this post by doing so.  I love you.

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Embracing The Single Season

 

Lately, I’ve been doing a lot of thinking about how much I’ve matured, and I have to admit that I have a new found love for the woman that I am today.  Looking back, I used to think that there were so many things that I would change about my past.  Not having my father in my life and never really getting to know him that way that I deserved to, losing my virginity at a young age,  getting married out of fear instead of being in love…the list goes on.  Now, I’m not so sure that I would change anything.  Things happen for different reasons, and over the years, I’ve learned a lot about myself.  I’ve learned even more about God.

One of the things I have a hard time with is being a single parent.  It’s not something that I signed up for, but it’s definitely a card that I was dealt.  I’ve always tried to take things in stride, so as to not let it bother me in a way that affected my children.  Parenting is both demanding and challenging whether there are two parents in the home or one.    There are times when my expectations of myself are unreal, and I fall short.  Because my limited human capabilities never live up to the image, strength, and stamina of the super woman version of myself that I think I should be, I disappoint myself every time.  I found myself putting in overtime as a parent trying to make sure that everything was taken care of.  I kept going and going, until I was on E.  A while ago, if you asked me, I would’ve said that I was running so hard for the kids.  The lie detector test determined that was a lie.   I convinced myself that all the hard work I was doing, was for my kids when in reality, it was for me.  I thought I was doing it to prove to my kids that not having a father around didn’t mean they had to suffer and go without.  WRONG.  I was pushing harder to prove something to myself.  I made up and believed this lie that if I worked hard enough to give them everything they wanted, and needed that the void and pain that they felt would go away.  My plan was to keep busy because when I kept still, the silence was more like an alarm reminding me of their pain, which was also mine.  As much as I want to forget, I’m reminded that I don’t have anyone to share certain things with.  Their accomplishments in school, their personal victories, school dances, report cards, parent-teacher conferences, giving them advice on how to deal with peer pressure, arguments with their friends, and helping them make decisions that will effect them for years to come.  

After the lights are out and the house is quiet, as I finally get the chance to wind down, I’m reminded in that moment that I’m single.  No, you never really forget your relationship status, but when you’re single, some moments magnify your singleness more than others.  I had a strong desire to love and to be loved.  Memories.  Some blurred and others so vivid, that I could step right into them. During a time when I thought that I knew what love was, everything was wrong.  Not just the timing, but the person I was, the person “he” was, and the lack of knowledge that we had for exactly who God was and his very clear commandments for how we are to treat and love others.   I walked away from that relationship being more confused, hurt, and angry than I was before I walked into it.  After giving my heart to God,  I look forward to being finally being able to love and receive love again.  The same way that God loves us.  

I remember my first encounter with God.  It was such a beautiful moment he and I had.  Little did I know, it was the first of many.  That was the first time that I experienced his presence, peace, and love.  Truly Indescribable.  The more time I spent with him, the clearer my understanding of TRUE LOVE became.  He made it so clear that even though I wanted certain people in our lives, my true fulfillment comes from him alone and not man.  So many people say that God’s love is unchanging, and that he is faithful.  I’m grateful to say that I’m experiencing it.  I’m learning to trust in God, and I thank him for this season and my awareness of his presence as well.  I’m not 100% sure that if things were different, if I was married, or if my children had active natural father’s in their lives, that we would know God and his love for us the way that we do. Intimately.  I had to experience some things and lose some things and people along the way. 

Funny, I never thought that I’d say this, but I truly am enjoying this single season.  Instead of putting my trust, hope, and faith in a man or relationship, I look to God and I give him all my fears and concerns.  I run to him.  I’m teaching my children to do the same.  Even though the heartache of a missing parent is still there, and at times me being only one person may seem like it’s not enough, they know that their Heavenly Father will provide their EVERY NEED.  Teaching them to rely on him in every situation that they face along with continuously lifting them up to God is the best thing that I can ever do for them.  It’s something that they’ll have and know long after I’m gone.  I wont always be here with them, but God will.  I thank God for all that he’s done and all that I know he will do.  To others, it may appear that I have a family of 3.  It is without a doubt, a family of 4.  Me, Makaela, Ja’Corey, and God as the head.  I’m grateful that I’m not raising them alone.  It’s me and God, one day at at a time.

God is Love, 

Tricia

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Ugly Truth, Beautiful Discovery

There is nothing like being in the presence of God.  As I pour out to him, the rest of the world fades away.  And there it is.  Everything I’ve worked so hard to hide from others is right there, front and center.  My pain, my guilt, rejection, low self esteem, my fears, all staring at me.  I don’t want to see, feel, or admit any of it.  Yes, that’s me.  I did it.  Yes, that’s me.  “It” happened to me.  I’m totally ashamed and embarrassed to own up to the fact that I experienced even the tiniest part of the enormous truth that stares me down. That’s me. THAT WAS ME.  

Beautiful Discovery.  I had to.  That’s where my healing is.  That’s where your healing is.  In the ugly truth of your past, pain, and shame is where your blessing is.  

There is always something so amazing about being in the presence of my Heavenly Father.  See, when I was alone, in my thoughts, I replayed and relived situations I experienced.  The torment, the agony, the emotions, all of it came rushing back.  I hated it.  I hated me.  I hated how I allowed it to define and change me.   BUT GOD!  When God showed me those same situations, he let me feel the pain for a brief moment.  Yes, God gave me a virtual tour of my past.  As he showed me my wounds, I cried out to him.  Tears flooding my face, and wetting my shirt before falling to the floor.  I offered myself.  My heart, my tears,  all of what I felt, to him. Overwhelmed like never before,  I wanted to run, but I couldn’t.  This was necessary for my growth.

 What happened in that moment?  Why would he take me back to those places?  

Because in the midst of ugly truth’s, there is a beautiful discovery.  So raw. So untouched.  So unrecognizable.   As I went through the memories, God held my hand.  I felt his arms wrap around me so tight, so warm, and loving.  I felt the pain, a brief sting, and then it was gone.  That was the beauty that I discovered.  He showed me that I was not at all what  I thought I was.  You  are not at all what you think you are.  NO SHAME, NO GUILT, NO FEAR, NO EMBARRASSMENT, NO FAILURE. NO CONFUSION.  

 Beautiful Discovery.  He allowed me to revisit those places so he could show me where he was in each of them.  He touched me where my pain was, and took it away.  It was necessary for me to feel that pain again so that I could feel the difference when he erased it , made me whole, and replaced it with his love.

 I wanted so much to never think about any of it, but my healing, my deliverance, is not was not just for me.  I now know that what I went through was so that I can write, tell, and encourage you to let God show you your ugly truth.  We don’t have to hide behind our past, because we can stand on the promises, truth, and love of our Heavenly Father.  He wants to use you, your past, your pain and turn it into a work of art.  Yes, you are a work of art.  His masterpiece. As he shows you these things, he removes them and draws something in it’s place (he did create the heavens and the earth.  That makes him THE GREATEST ARTIST THERE IS AND PROVES THAT THERE IS NOBODY GREATER THAN HE).  Once he’s finished, how amazing it is that the work of our creator will be revealed in you for all the world to see?  

Beautiful Discovery.  I knew that the journey of giving my life to God wouldn’t be easy, but it is definitely worth it.  As painful and revealing as it can be, it is without a doubt the most beautifully  eye opening walk I’ve ever taken and there is nothing that I would change about it.

 As I go deeper within myself, I pray that you are encouraged and strengthened and that your faith and hope in God remains and increases with each step that you take with him.  I pray that you allow him to show you his love and that as you experience it, that you let him touch and heal the places you may be hurting.  I pray that in the midst of your ugly truth’s, that you find the most beautiful discovery.  YOU.

 

God is love, 

Tricia

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Being A Bridge For The Road Less Traveled

Sitting here, reading the book of Matthew, God gave me  something.  Our responsibility as those who are in Christ is to share the gospel.  For many, including myself, we like to pick and choose who we share testimonies with, who we invite to church, who we pray for/with and God said, that is not at all how it should be.  WE hold onto the very present fear of the unknown of the dangerous “what if”.  “What if I invite them to church and they decline the invitation”, “what if I share my testimony, and they don’t believe”, “what if I obey God, and they laugh or doubt me”.  Again, for many of us, this is a common mind battle.  I imagine Matthew’s job as a tax collector as a challenging one because of the reputation that tax collectors had during that time and the hatred that the Jews had for tax collectors.  Despite the negative opinions that came along with this profession, it was still indeed a profitable one.  When Jesus called Matthew to be a disciple, he followed Jesus despite what he would be losing.  But, in his “losing” Matthew realized he was actually gaining so much more.  So my question is, how willing are we to leave behind the things that we find valuable to trust completely and follow Jesus Christ

 When we are able to fully trust God, we are also able to speak boldly and freely about his love, his forgiveness, what he has done and tell all we encounter how he longs to do the same for them.  God is calling us to be a bridge for his people.  Many are afraid of what their life with God will be like because it calls for them to relinquish complete control and to trust God fully.  The problem with that is people like to be in control and the thought of not having control can be scary, so instead of trusting, they continue to live their lives the way that they want without any regard for God at all.  So many people are lonely, scared, lost, hurting, and living in sin.  We see them daily and say nothing.  Again, God is calling us to be a bridge for the lost to the road less traveled.    Perhaps, if we remember when we first crossed that bridge, we would be more inclined to speak up instead of overthinking what God wants us to do.  Each day we are faced with multiple opportunities to help someone turn their lives around. 

Seize the day, take advantage of the opportunities, share the Gospel.

New Beginning –>Love–>Forgiveness–>Joy–> Peace–>Christ–>THIS WAY –>

God is Love,

Tricia