Seek, Wait, Receive and Repeat

Hello everyone. I hope you are well and enjoying your long weekend.

Last Monday was my 13th wedding anniversary! My husband and I enjoyed our time together. We didn’t do a lot, but what we did was meaningful to us. What a blessed day. I am grateful to God for ordaining our marriage before the foundation of the world. Praise the Lord.

We are twenty-one days into the new year. There have been triumphs and challenges and through it all, I have been praising God. It has been my desire to grow in my walk with Christ as well as live the life he has given me. To be more like Him in every aspect of my life. I am learning to continually seek him first in all things big and small.

Jeremiah 29:11“You will seek me and find me when you seek me with all your heart” (NIV).

In July, I will turn forty. I am looking forward to it. I have been making all kinds of plans for the things I desire to do. While making my plans, I was reminded to keep God at the forefront of everything. God wants me to have an abundant life, but he also wants me to keep him first.

Matthew 6:33 – “Seek ye first the kingdom of God and his righteousness and all these things will be added unto you” (KJV).

We must learn to take the scripture literally. We have to consistently seek God’s kingdom first so the things we desire can be added unto us, not the other way around.

I was recently reminded of this lesson a couple of weeks ago. In 2017 my family and I moved from Philadelphia to Georgia. One of the first visits we wanted to make was to the Georgia Aquarium. I heard such great things about it and could not wait to take my family. When I began planning it (I LOVE planning things), I looked online to get an idea of the pricing and boy was I shocked! For a family of five, the tickets including parking was about $170! Well…we just could not do that. My finances had drastically changed as a result of our move. I was no longer working, and my husband was the primary breadwinner. In my prayer time, I expressed my feelings to God and asked if he could open the door for my family to visit the aquarium. Six months went by and I could not find a coupon or discount code anywhere. All the while, my children were asking when we would go, and all I said was, “When the time is right.”

It was now 2019 and we still had not visited the aquarium. We visited other great places in Georgia, but not the aquarium. During the first week of January, my husband was out and about in Atlanta, and came across a group that was advertising a festival. The festival would take place the entire weekend and it included tickets to…you guessed it, Georgia State Aquarium.

For two adults and up to four children the tickets were a GRAND total of $54!! When I read the flyer, I lifted my hands in praise to God, because I knew this was the answer to my prayer. Not only did we get the tickets for $54, but we did not have to pay for the other sights within the aquarium that range from $25 pp to $75 pp. We did everything and it was FREE!!

On January 13th, the day before my wedding anniversary we visited the aquarium and had a wonderful time and a great family outing. I know it may seem small, but it was not small to me. God answered my prayer specifically and gave me more than what I asked for.

This is why we seek God in everything. He has perfect timing and he knows what’s best in all things. We must be careful not to go about life making our own plans while leaving God out. Sure, I could have saved up the $170, but look at what I would have missed out on if I had my own plan. My God gave me something better, and that is exactly what he wanted all along. This is why I trust him. He sees the end from the beginning. He knew, before I prayed, there would be a blessing bigger than what I requested.

There have been times God has answered my prayers immediately. And there are prayers I’ve been praying since I was ten years old that I am waiting to manifest. No matter how long, I will trust the process and continually seek his kingdom first. The longer the wait the bigger the blessing.

As children of God, we must remember God has our very best interest in heart. However, to get God’s best, there is a waiting process. The waiting process involves God working on our heart so we can be ready for the blessing.

Jeremiah 29:11 – “For I know the plans I have for you,” says the Lord. “They are plans for good and not for disaster, to give you a future and a hope” (NLT).

With all the places I desire to go and things I desire to do, I am going to seek Him first. He knows the way that I take. He knows what’s best for me. I trusted Him with my life this far and I plan on going all the way.

Will you trust Him with the plans for your life?

Blessings.

Please enjoy the video below. It was pretty cool!

 

 

Photo by JOHN TOWNER on Unsplash

Today’s Prayer

Father, in the name of Jesus, thank you for another year to celebrate your birth. Help us to continue to focus on who you are. The Great I AM. The Lamb of God who takes away the sins of the world.

As we cross over into the New Year, I pray our heart’s desire is to please you more. To not only be hearers of your word but doers.

Your word tells us you have great plans for our lives; plans to prosper us, to give us a future and a hope. Therefore, as we make our plans for the year, remind us to acknowledge you because you will make our paths straight.

We love you Lord. Thank you for the grace and mercy you bestow on us with each new morning. We don’t deserve it but are thankful for your love towards us. What a Love!

In Jesus Name…Amen

Scriptures
John 1:29
Exodus 3:14
James 1:22
Jeremiah 29:11
Proverbs 3:6
Lamentations 3:22

I will never forget my first or my second

Hello everyone. I hope you had a great weekend! Can you believe it’s December? Twenty-two days until Christmas. It is unbelievable how fast the year went by. Are you looking forward to the new year? I am excited for the opportunity to start over. I am ready to accomplish the natural and spiritual goals I’ve set for myself. I am also looking forward to my 13th wedding anniversary. Lord, thank you.

As a ponder over the past twelve years, I am in awe of God’s grace. My husband and I have experienced extreme highs and unbelievable lows, but we did it and stayed together. My marriage was the first positive relationship in my life. Actually, my husband was my first in many ways.

Let me backtrack a bit. God was my first. He was the first person I learned loved me exactly the way I was. As a child, I never had anyone love me that way. Whenever I made a mistake I trembled with fear of harsh reprimand. When it came to God, I was also fearful because I thought if I messed up, he would turn his back on me. However, the day I came into the realization of God’s love for me, it changed my life. I finally understood there was nothing I could do to get God to stop loving me.

After walking with God for several years, I was very secure in his love for me, but I struggled with believing he could send me someone who could love me just the same. I never expressed those feelings to God, but I am so glad he knows the secrets and desires of our hearts.

Psalms 139: 1-2 “Lord, you have examined me and know all about me. You know when I sit down and when I get up. You know my thoughts before I think them.”

Years later, God answered my heart’s desire and sent me a physical example of unconditional love when he brought my husband into my life. I had been healed from so much pain, but there was still some unresolved trauma I was not aware of. It was not until after I married, that those issues resurfaced.  My husband loved me through it all.

The Lord was my first spiritual example of true love and my husband was my spiritual and physical example! Through all of my ups and downs, my husband loved me as Christ loved the church…unconditionally. Sure, we had other issues that had nothing to do with my trauma, but we learned to work through all of it, allowing God to be the third cord in our marriage.

Ecclesiastes 4:12A person standing alone can be attacked and defeated, but two can stand back-to-back and conquer. Three are even better, for a triple-braided cord is not easily broken” (NLT).

The relationship with my husband taught me how to persevere, sacrifice, and endure; especially when things did not go my way. When you think about it, it is similar to the relationship we have with the Father. We endure trials, tests and hardship, but at the end of it all, we win.

James 2:12 – “Blessed is the man who remains steadfast under trial, for when he has stood the test, he will receive the crown of life, which God has promised to those who love him” (ESV).

God was my first. He loved me, healed me and set me free. My husband was my second. The person God sent to aid in my remaining healing process.

Before dating and most certainly before we wed, it is important we are healed from past issues, otherwise, we will bring those issues into your relationship as I did. However, God is so merciful and full of wisdom that He knew who to send to aid in my healing process. That is His unconditional love. My FIRST love, before I knew that HE was.

God bless you.

 

Photo by Asaf R on Unsplash

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

A reminder from my eight-year-old

I am so grateful for my children. All five of them are unique in their own way and a blessing to me in many ways.

My children and I always talk. It is something I cherish because I did not have it with my parents. My youngest son, who is eight, likes to talk the most. For an eight-year-old, he has such profound insight and it amazes me. He reminds me of myself at that age as God allowed me to see things that most adults did not see. Unfortunately, I could not express what I saw. As a result of my experience, I allow my children to speak what is on their heart and mind…most of the time. 😊

A few days ago, my youngest and I were talking about his eldest brother who is twenty-five and experiencing his own life struggles. I said to him, “Your big brother is going through a lot right now.” He said, “I know, but people think life is over when bad things happen, but there is always a blessing after the bad.” I looked at him and told him he was correct!

Psalms 127:3 – “Children are a gift from the LORD; they are a reward from him” (NLT).

God is amazing! He will use anyone to remind us of his word, even our children.
His statement was a reminder of God’s love, and grace towards us even in difficult times.

As Christians, we will endure trials because the Word tells us so. I Peter 1:6 says, “Be truly glad. There is wonderful joy ahead, even though you have to endure many trials for a little while” (NLT).

However, when experiencing a trial, the difficulty comes when the trial lasts for more than a day, a week, a month or a year. The key to success while going through any trial is consistently praying and studying the Word of God.

God will use the most difficult times in our lives to stretch us in our spiritual walk and teach us how to trust him on a deeper level. We must keep our focus on Christ alone. If our focus shifts elsewhere, we open ourselves up to discouragement and feelings of defeat.

But I encourage you to stay with God. I thank God that negative circumstances are only designed to build us up, not to destroy us. The trial is only for a season. As my son Jeremiah said, “there is always a blessing after the bad.” When we come out on the other side of it, we will be better.  Job 23:10 says, “But he knows the way that I take; when he has tested me, I will come forth as gold.”

These days, as we watch the news, we can be saddened and discouraged by what we see and hear. But we must remember God has a blessing after the bad.

John 16:33 – In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world” (NIV).

 

 

Photo by Jeremy Gallman on Unsplash

Anxious?

Hello everyone! I hope each of you are well and had a blessed weekend. I pray you are refreshed and ready for the week.

I love the Bible. It is full of stories filled with instruction and wisdom. And for the believer, victory. Several scriptures are my favorite, and many I hold close to my heart. The scriptures that have blessed me most are the ones that have walked me through my deepest valley’s. One of my absolute favorites is found in Philippians 4:6-8.

“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.”

“Finally, brothers and sisters, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable—if anything is excellent or praiseworthy—think about such things” (NIV).

This scripture is packed with wisdom and instruction concerning how we are to handle our emotions and life’s circumstances.

God tells us not to be anxious about ANYTHING. Seems easier said than done, right? How do I remain calm when everything around me is in total chaos? Well, according to the scripture, we start with prayer. God says, “pray and petition Him with thanksgiving.” Go ahead and tell God why you are anxious. He knows anyway. After you tell him, tell him you trust Him for the answer as you give Him praise.

After obeying the first instruction, God says, “He will give us His peace which transcends ALL understanding and will guard our heart and mind.” As you stand in faith and continue to pray, he will give you peace about the situation.

Finally, God says, “think on what is true, noble, right, pure, lovely, admirable, excellent, and praiseworthy.”  When thoughts come that try to make you anxious, remember to think of what is true and nothing else. As you do this, you will continue to experience God’s peace. As we follow God at His word, He will give us exactly what we need in His perfect timing.

In those moments when I find myself feeling anxious about a situation or circumstance, or when the enemy tries to convince me of anything contrary to God’s word, I am reminded by the Holy Spirit to pray and give thanksgiving to God.

Today I encourage you, that instead of allowing the feelings of anxiousness to weigh you down, do what God says. Pray, give thanks, and think on these things according to Philippians 4:8.

Scriptures
Philippians 4:6-8