Strength for the Journey
You know, this past year has been a crazy one. We’ve struggled with quite the chaotic season of sickness that began the day after we planted our butts in Clearwater, Florida. I asked the other day at the pediatrician’s office if I could get a printout of all the times we’ve been there this past year and they laughed at me. We’ve had struggles of all kinds this last year. But it’s all making sense now.
God doesn’t make us wade through the valley of the shadow of funk without a flashlight. We’ve had some incredibly bright times that have outshone the negative ones. Someone gave us a car. That’s right. My mouth hung wide open with tears streaming down my face when I got the phone call. We had a need. A gracious couple at our church met that need with open arms.
My husband surprised me with Beth Moore conference tickets for Christmas. Best. Gift. Ever. Super stoked! He even invited a good friend who lives in the area to go with me! #infinitebrowniepoints #myhusbandrocks #hashtag
This is the year of the open door. I’ve heard it so many times, but I’m living and breathing each moment of it as we speak. God opened the doors for me to record my first moms devotional CD, Stretchmarks. I’m so grateful for this opportunity and all who have encouraged me through this journey! (Click on the tab that says Stretchmarks CD for more info!)
The She Speaks Writers/Speakers Conference is coming up in July. It just so happens to be the weekend of my birthday. I’ve had several people tell me I really need to check this out. When I realized how much it would cost for the conference, plane tickets, and hotel accommodations, I simply sighed. Then I prayed. “God, if this is what You want for me, You have to provide the finances. There’s just no way we can afford this.” And He DID. Within 10 days.
David stood there as a small stinky Shepard boy looking up at Goliath, the ultimate warrior. Joshua circled the walls of Jericho that encompassed the great city. Moses had a speech impediment, but God sent Aaron to be his mouthpiece. All throughout history, men and women of God have had great needs. God showed up and moved mountains for his children. He split wide the Red Sea for Moses, slayed a giant bully with a stone and knocked the walls of Jericho down like a house of cards.
If God put a dream in your heart, CHASE IT. Don’t let the sun go down on a moment of opportunity. God has brought you to this moment at the peak of this season for a reason. He hasn’t brought you this far to make a fool of yourself. He wants you to succeed and He is by your side to help make your dreams come true.
It’s absolutely mind blowing the doors that God will open if only we humble ourselves, pick up our cross and follow Him. He paints the most beautiful masterpiece, but we have to be willing to sacrifice the brushes and the paint. What we can do on our own is mediocre at best, but ohhhhh when the Creator of the Universe gets a hold of us….
It doesn’t matter what you’ve done, where you’ve been, or who you’ve been with — God loves you. He will forgive you. He will allow you to go through the fire to refine you and remove the impurities, but watch with a great big grin on His face knowing the beauty that the world is going to see.
It’s not easy. I know that. But God will give us strength for the journey. And we won’t ever walk through this alone. I’m telling you, this has been the most exciting journey of my life! God has blown my mind again and again! I just submitted my first piece for a local Christian magazine that’s going to be published in July. Please keep me in your prayers as I’m also in the process of finishing my first devotional book. I’ll be presenting the book proposal to several publishers at She Speaks in a few weeks (and hopefully meeting some incredible Proverbs 31 ladies… *cough cough* Lysa Terkeurst *cough cough* ). Can you say nervous? Deep breath….
I wanted to share for a moment what God is doing in my life. Why? Because I’m a frizzy-haired mess of a woman who has made a mess of her life, yelled at her kids, disappointed her husband, let people down, and failed a million times, BUT GOD. I want you to say that out loud. “I’m a hot mess – BUT GOD…”
You are not perfect. You don’t have to have it all together. God can and will use you if you’re trying your absolute best and you’re willing to go where He calls you. Even into unchartered waters.
A word of advice – your biggest mess will usually be your greatest ministry. So don’t fear, my darling. Release what you’ve been gripping so tightly in those balled up fists and watch God begin doing something incredible that will touch lives in such a powerful way.
P.S. I believe in YOU.
P.P.S. God believes in you too.
Live Life Unscripted,
“For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.” Jeremiah 29:11