Fear or freedom

What moves you?

Fear or freedom?

What stirs the motives of your heart, your words, your actions, your thoughts, your time, your habits, your movements ?

Is it fear or freedom? —————-

We get to decide if the life we live is one birthed out of the fear that God won’t or can’t do it for us so we might need to do it for Him; OR maybe that fear has whispered the opportunity to measure your life with the standard of someone else’s failures or successes; or maybe fear has tainted you with the mistakes, misuse and abuse of your past OR maybe, we get to decide that what He has planned for us is based on the promise that He made in His Word before we were ever born and that promise is being fulfilled (regardless of the interruptions & delays) in due time, so we have nothing to fear and are in fact not shackled to the lie that it’ll never happen.

 

Today’s passage from Galatians 4 talked about the ways we function (actually dysfunction) in self-sufficiency and find ourselves incomplete yearning for more.
Galatians 4 offers us the truth of the story of Abraham, Sarai and Hagar how they birthed one thing out of self-sufficiency and literally birthed generations of slavery and then birthed something from the root of The Promise and birthed generations of freedom.

Isn’t it so true that we are living out of a place of fear based self-sufficiency when our well intentioned goals are completely dependent on what we can perform, discipline ourselves and do for ourselves we find ourselves by ourselves and frustrated. BUT GOD.

This is where I am today. And honestly I’ve wrestled quite a bit with the lie of “you know better, you should look better” and had to come toe-toe with the enemy and dare him to answer me when I asked “KNOW BETTER THAN WHAT, LOOK BETTER THAN WHO”…but Y’all I couldn’t ask that question in my own strength because I would have had all sorts of lists of comparisons to measure myself.

I had to come face the enemy from the place of freedom not fear.

Today, I’m surrendering my body. From the Wellness Revelation detox I’ve learned that I haven’t fully done that. I was still comparing myself with myself (both the old self that knew how to go hard and even the new self that owned freedom) and God revealed that I was doing it trying to prove something. I know that He wants it all, the know how and the cluelessness.

So today I surrender all.

So what motivates you? Fear or freedom?

Back to Basics: Giving and receiving

Yesterday, this is where He spoke the truth to me. I hope it blesses you.

Give, and you will receive. Your gift will return to you in full–pressed down, shaken together to make room for more, running over, and poured into your lap. The amount you give will determine the amount you get back. Luke 6:38

– Keep movin’ #getinneractive

A different kind of strength training

 

Can I invite you into a season to #restandrenew? Wherever you are, start there and see what might happen…

I mean authentic, committed, intentional, serious RESToration to RENEW your spirit soul and body ?

This past month we camped on Hosea 10:12 with our Summer book club bible study  as we dug into the book Uninvited by Lysa Terkeurst and my mind has been blown by the way The Holy Spirit shows us who He is and that His promises never return void!

“I said, ‘Plant the good seeds of righteousness, and you will harvest a crop of love. Plow up the hard ground of your hearts,

for now is the time to seek the Lord, that he may come and shower righteousness upon you.’”
‭‭Hosea‬ ‭10:12‬ ‭NLT‬‬

I’ve been sharing on instagram a series called #redefineyourself and I’ll be *re-sharing more here; but if you want more purposeful, individual focus there’s a space at the table right here on my blog waiting with your name on it, I’m inviting you to join me, I just need to know you’ll be sitting there! (leave a comment below)

Next month we’re going back to the basics of finding freedom in our own skin. This will be a study in Galatians. But for now, let’s continue this conversation on redefining yourself.

Friends when we commit to intentional movement, deeper heart & soul work, body nourishing meals and a “this is so good for me” we won’t ever lose.

 

Isn’t it just like God to put us smack dab in the middle of the situation we only talked about but in the back of our minds wondered if it might *ever* happen to us?
Some of you know my story.
Short version, in 2013 I woke up one day in head to toe pain. I couldn’t move. It hurt like an electrical shock for my husband to even touch me, to help me try to move my legs that felt like dead weight. I managed to shuffle to church that morning and made my way to the altar. When I told my pastors wife what was going on and what that it felt like “fire in my bones” she immediately said OH NO, NAME OF JESUS GIRL YOU BETTER OPEN YOUR MOUTH AND SPEAK THE WORD OF GOD. (Jeremiah 20:9 But if I say, “I will not mention his word or speak anymore in his name,” his word is in my heart like a fire, a fire shut up in my bones. I am weary of holding it in; indeed, I cannot.) #WhatABeautifulNameItis
 
For 6 months I stayed under the care of doctors, and neurologists being poked prodded and filled with fire, unable to walk. I laid on the hospital bed with ultrasound needles in the muscles of my hip, thigh, calf, ankle and foot. As the doctor would give me prompts to move the ultrasound which also had brain activity pads attached to my head; registered the response time from the brain cognitive understanding to the translation of actual muscle movement. My brain was very aware of what was being asked of me but my body was delayed in the responsiveness. In the larger muscle the response time was quicker than the smaller muscles. The closer the commands got to my feet, the longer the delay. When it got to my feet, there was no response.
 
The Drs’ diagnosis.
Trauma.
Trauma that had finally surfaced and decided to be dealt with because the other signals that had been sent to my body were ignored. The body is uniquely designed by God to only allow so much “self-preservation” before it recognizes that it was never designed to carry these things (Hebrews 12).  (We’ll be digging more into this next month for our Back To Basics FOCUS be sure to subscribe so you don’t miss this!! )
 
Fast forward, including a lifting of the symptoms, restoration of strength, releasing bitterness, anger, rejection, resentment and years of childhood trauma; the symptoms have returned. At times I sit with God asking Him if He has allowed this as a thorn in my flesh. NEVERTHELESS (I guess I do talk that way) His grace reminds me that He hasn’t brought me into anything that I can’t handle in His power and strength.
 
That rejection you wear is hiding the beauty you carry.
That fear has crippled you and you can’t even see your limp.
That bitter, angry heart of yours has been calloused from feeling the tender mercy of an immeasurable love of the Father.
That abandonment has left you defensive and the walls you’ve built to protect you from being hurt has kept the Father far from reaching you.
You can come out from hiding.
His love covers every fear, all of your shame, every guilt, every wrong done to you, through you or by you.
He is making all things new.
He is making broken, beautiful.
“As you speak,  a hundred billion failures disappear, you lost your life so I could find it here.
If you left behind you, so will I…If you gladly chose surrender, so will I ” Hillsong United
I was talking with a sister-friend this morning about listening for the instructions from God, knowing whether or not we’ve heard Him clearly and how that relates to the way we take care of our bodies…
 
I got to thinking; what if we applied the verse in Galatians 5 (about the fruits of the spirit) to strength training.
 
There are certain muscles we love to train and show off, there are others that we work hard at but they seem to never give us the results we want to see, so we aren’t so quick to display them and then there are those that we all together avoid because they’re either seemingly useless or too difficult to train so we just ignore them.  Then there is the situation of knowing how (understanding what’s required – as in my physical issue) and yet for some reason we are unable to finish the task.
 
So I ask you, which {spiritual }muscles are you currently training, and which ones have you ignored. Which ones are really strong and which ones are weak? What does your current strength training regimen look like? Have you identified your weakness?
 
Just for the sake of jogging our memories; here are the “spiritual” muscles…
 
  • Love
  • Joy
  • Peace
  • Patience
  • Kindness
  • Goodness
  • Self-Control
 
Consider this as your initial assessment with your personal trainer. #getinneractive #redefineyourself
The Christian commitment is not an abstraction. It is a concrete, visible, courageous and formidable way of being in the word – forged by daily choices consistent with inner truth.
A commitment that is not visible in humble service, suffering discipleship and creative love is an illusion.
Jesus Christ is impatient with illusions, and the world has no interest in abstractions. “Everyone who listens to these words of mine and does not act on them will be like a stupid man who built his house on sand” (Matthew 7:26) If we bypass the words of the Great Rabbi, the spiritual life will be nothing more than fantasy. // Brennan Manning Abba’s Child
JOIN US IN AUGUST: OUR BACK TO BASICS GROUP

Crazy how you can make a bold/scary decision and almost immediately you’re faced with the opposition to retract and literally fight to maintain your choice. Yesterday with tear-filled eyes I confessed to one of my mentors that the Holy Spirit revealed to me that I was fighting (shrinking back & withdrawing) the gifts He had placed in me for fear of being seen as too much.

I’ve known what some of the gifts are, and I’ve seen them flourish, but I have also felt the sting of rejection in the midst of using them. And my flesh was crying out loud that I didn’t want that anymore. But y’all it felt like Paul’s thorn because all I kept hearing from the Holy Spirit was GRACE. Like Christ, humbly considering the cup to be removed but in His heart He knew that He was created specifically for the work; NEVERTHELESS, NOT MY WILL BUT YOURS FATHER.

See friends, we want the gifts, we want the sparkle and shine, we even want the fame but when we consider the cost and the potential pain that comes with it, are we willing to be so bold to surrender the words NOT MY WILL, BUT YOURS?

Beloved…
My gift is irrevocable, kindled by the HolySpirit, as a token of my pledge of love to you.

Share this gift, as a testimony of your new identity as my Beloved.

Don’t be ashamed. Let my love catch fire in you. There is no one like. Kindle afresh my gift in you. Fan it into the flame. Be bold. Sparkle bright. You are my Gift. // Whispers of Rest by Bonnie Gray
https://open.spotify.com/track/1ed3wNCecRIp6SugyR0w2J

Back to Basics: Weigh less

Because there are far too many of us just getting by, living by comparison or hustling to prove our worth…

Weigh Less To Feed More is better than anything I’ve ever seen in the “weight loss & nutrition” industry because it gets to the true root & reason why we’re all hungry and starving; yet full but never satisfied.

It’s more than calories and carbs, it’s beyond eating better on budgets and it’s far more than anything we could ever calculate in an app that’s designed to tell you when, where, why and how based on your lifestyle.
Who better to help us understand what we need in order to thrive than the One who created us… (Psalm 139) So if you’re ready to get honest, get whole & get free; click the link the link and get your spot reserved (sign up), I have 2 spots left and … we begin August 18th!
get honest

“But, except for these special cases, I’m not going to walk around on eggshells worrying about what small-minded people might say; I’m going to stride free and easy, knowing what our large-minded Master has already said. If I eat what is served to me, grateful to God for what is on the table, how can I worry about what someone will say? I thanked God for it and he blessed it!

So eat your meals heartily, not worrying about what others say about you—you’re eating to God’s glory, after all, not to please them. As a matter of fact, do everything that way, heartily and freely to God’s glory. At the same time, don’t be callous in your exercise of freedom, thoughtlessly stepping on the toes of those who aren’t as free as you are. I try my best to be considerate of everyone’s feelings in all these matters; I hope you will be, too.”
1 Corinthians 10:29-33 MSG

Yesterday a friend shared a t-shirt she found that read “SURVIVING MOTHERHOOD ON COFFEE & GRACE” of course immediately I asked where to get it, because seriously that’s my anthem and if I can have a tshirt to declare it; then it’s official!!! #thenewtattoo Last night I asked my husband to pray for me because the past few nights I haven’t really slept and I woke up this morning wondering if the prayer worked. Puffy eyes, stiff necked and groggy I’m tempted to say no {not yet}. Then the Holy Spirit immediately taps my shoulder and says “remember the whole coffee and grace thing, well one of those is overriding the other”… Y’all if I can just be honest for a second… I love coffee. But grace, I desperately need it; like being dehydrated, starving and horribly broken and it’s the only thing that will keep me alive!
Life is scary; people get rude; our kids grow up right in front of us and we blink and the wonder years are gone; death happens and grieving feels like it’s on a schedule of to-dos; competition & perfection rises up at the most inconvenient times; hustle becomes the buzz word of the decade and if you’re not on that train you’re the odd man out; friendships get thick & thorny and your purpose feels thin & flaky; authenticity becomes diluted to a hashtag and then like a flood God starts reminding you that where He has you RIGHT NOW is intentional.
When my hands are ready to go up and the towel is ready to be thrown in; He sends His Holy Spirit to remind you of the redemption, freedom & identity you have in Christ.
He comes like a gardener to uproot weeds that have been choking the life out of the fruit that’s been bitter, to tend to the growth of the sweet, fragrant and life-giving fruit. He comes like a healing balm to the mend brokenness that festers and invades our hearts, homes and happiness and He restores us back to His original design. This summer I set my heart & my mind on being intentionally available to my family & purpose – without missing a beat He consistently shines His light on the darkness and illuminates the joy. We get worn out when we’ve blocked/locked Him out. #relax #getinneractive #Matthew11
break free from food

Where are you on your eating habits? Where are you spiritually? Are you feeding doubts, emotions, fears, faith, comparison, hope, purpose? Have you considered the “process” or “philosophy” you live by and realized that this can’t keep you going for much longer because certainly there’s more to life than measurements, calories, checklists and meal plans? OR maybe you’re on the other side and decided that if you DON’T do that, then life as you know it would fall apart •••Listen, friend; I’m not here to tell you how to live, love or laugh but I am here to tell you that if we aren’t letting God regulate our decisions in how we take care of our daily lives, it’s REALLY EASY to become controlled BY our lives. Freedom – TRUE FREEDOM – in your own skin; doesn’t come attached to a checklist of anything that feels like captivity, like if you don’t do it right then you have to quit and chalk it up as a failed effort. By the way, if you fail that means you at least tried! AMEN?!?! So, listen This is your do over and this time you’ll do it differently because Grace is our anchor! • • •

Weigh Less (no longer weighed down) to Feed More (more availability to the people & purposes that matter) begins August 18!

wEIGH LESS TO FEED MORE INVITE

 

Back to Basics: Breathe

This month our FOCUS is “BACK TO BASICS” and we’re covering everything that falls in the category of the foundational Truths of who you are!! Starting with the most essential thing: BREATHING!

A friend just asked “God is still writing your story, what are you most looking forward to seeing Him write”…

So this is where I tell you to BREATHE.

inhale exhale

Inhale. Exhale.

God hasn’t forgotten you and He didn’t design you and walk away, wiping His hands, shrugging His shoulders, mumbling ‘they’ll figure it out’. No, He’s right there fine tuning and shaping us everyday looking at what He designed seeing a reflection of Himself, calling us GOOD. Knowing that with each breath we take and every season of our lives there will be pruning and growth and newness and a shedding away of the unnecessary; He breathes on us like a fresh wind that blows away the staleness of life and restores our souls. He brings a refreshing rain that waters the seeds that were sown in the soil of our heart and He sends people across our path to tend to those seeds. He doesn’t leave us to write this ourselves!!!

So my kids started school today, as they got out of the car I couldn’t help but lose a bucket of tears that were splattered with joy, peace, patience, looooong suffering…

Every fruit of the spirit flooded my soul at once but not to mention the angst of the fruits of bitter roots. Watching them walk away into a new season of their lives was literally watching the faithfulness of God through some uncertain seasons of my own life.

Inhale. Exhale. God’s got it.

My kids are 18 months apart. I remember when we found out the youngest was coming. Shocked. Scared. Unprepared.

Inhale. Exhale. God never left us to write the story alone.

Today they started 10th & 9th grade. Inhale. Exhale. ‪#‎getinneractive‬ ‪#‎GodsGotIt‬ ‪#‎breathe‬ ‪#‎backtobasics

 

Where is God asking you to breathe? Where have you given Him permission to breathe a fresh focus on your life?

Jeremiah 31:24 God promises to satisfy the weary soul and every languishing soul will refresh.

Let’s get back to the basics friends and allow God to breathe on us for some refreshing!

  • * * * * * * * * * * *

Back to Basics is our annual August challenge, and I’m excited to tell you that this year we have the amazing opportunity to expand what we’ll be discussing in the basics by taking it deeper with Weigh Less to Feed More. To find out about this grace-filled program click here and get registered QUICKLY I only have a few spaces left!