January has been a rough month, taxing emotionally, financially, mentally and spiritually. December 31st filled me with promise for an amazing start to 2019 and if I’m being honest, it’s been anything but amazing. Financially, I had some setbacks, that really put me in a bad position and you know how frustrating that can be, right? Then, I found out an old friend of mine had passed away, in the most unexpected and awful way. It rocked me to my core and to be honest I think I’m still in shock. We were such good friends growing up and although we grew apart, I never stopped wondering about her and trying to keep up with her life, because well, that’s what you do when you love someone, it doesn’t fade away. It’s a complicated relationship, but I’ll just say, my heart was and still is broken. The sadness didn’t stop when another friend lost a dear loved one unexpectedly as well. On top of the fact that work was ridiculously stressful and I had to travel, I’ve been feeling really depleted.
I can feel the walls closing in and as they are closing my mind is going to that stinking thinking place filled with insecurity and doubt. Do you ever go down that road? It’s isn’t a fun trip. There are days where I feel absolutely useless. I take two steps forward and twenty steps back, and I want to scream, “God, what is going on?” I cry, uncle! I mean I’m trying here! I’m sure that’s the problem, I’m trying and not surrendering. How hard it is to just let go and let God? Although I know His way is the best way, and that he already knows the obstacles I will face and has it worked out, it’s still not always easy for me to surrender. That’s that pesky human ego side that fights the spirit tooth and nail.
I’ve been digesting the verse in Lamentations because it is a much-needed reminder of the Lord’s never-ending compassion and mercies that are new every morning. January has been a beast, but I can look back and see God’s compassion coming through. Whether it is Him calming my heart and mind, or a friend bailing me out of a tough unexpected financial situation, or help with my child after school, or a meal on the house from a kind person when I was traveling for work, God was present and his hand was in every situation. I didn’t have to do a thing but allow Him to work. He will never allow us to be consumed because His love is so great, so awesome and consuming! God’s love covers us and carries us. I pray that if you are feeling brokenhearted and weak that you read Lamentations and think about God’s mercies in your life…they are present, I promise you. Allow yourself to be consumed by his compassion and not your burdens.
A little while back I dived into Psalms and started to look at the character of God. Do you ever ask yourself who is God? I wanted to share this deep dive with you. I was overwhelmed by what scriptures tell us about God, His character and who He is to us. I hope you are as blessed as I was when I saw the depth of God’s love and provision for us!
“For those who live according to the flesh set their minds on the things of the flesh, but those who live according to the Spirit set their minds on the things of the Spirit. For to set the mind on the flesh is death, but to set the mind on the Spirit is life and peace.”
What is your mind set on? Is it set on your problems, on the dismal state of the world, regrets, or the limitations you see to be holding you back in life? Our thoughts are super powerful. Our actions and emotions are in direct alignment with our thoughts. If we allow our circumstances to dictate our thoughts we are in for a rollercoaster of a ride. Why? Because our circumstances are always in flux. How many times have you been riding high, and then boom something blindsides you and you’re lying flat on your back. How do you keep your mind healthy in those hard times? What are you meditating on? The problem or the blessing? Paul tells us in Philippians that we need to meditate on those things above. That’s key to breaking the chains of stinking thinking! Is your mind set on the fleshly things, your circumstances, or is it set on your faith and hope in God’s grace and provision?
Your mind is prime real estate for the enemy. Never forget that God has a plan for your life, but so does the enemy and it starts with an attack on your mind. When the stinking thinking seeds are planted in your mind, they breed and multiply quickly manifesting toxicity in your actions and your interactions! See, the dangerous thing about stinking thinking is it is invasive and contagious. It infects everyone you’re around! As a mom, no one is expecting you to be skipping to the lou every day, but your words and actions matter to your kids. Negativity spreads like wild fire and if you’re not careful your kids will adopt the stinking thinking pattern in their own lives.
Stinking thinking is exhausting! Negative thoughts drain your brain and your energy. Stinking thinking is how the enemy distracts you from living fully in your role as a child of Christ! Stinking thinking is in direct opposition to the spirit of God. When our mind is filled with the spirit we feel renewed, refreshed and willing to God’s will for our life. We don’t see impossibilities or limitations because we are living in a state of spiritual abundance, and not the lack that stinking thinking falsely makes you believe you’re living in!
In my upcoming e-book, “15 Tips to Avoid Single Mom Burnout,” I give you a strategic plan based straight from the scriptures that will help you to evict stinking thinking from your mind! In the meantime, here are some scriptures to meditate on to get you on the road of breaking the chains of stinking thinking:
“Finally brothers 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 those things.”
“Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewal of your mind, that by testing you may discern what is the will of God, what is good and acceptable and perfect.”
1 Corinthians 3:18
“Let no one deceive himself. If anyone among you thinks that he is wise in this age, let him become a fool that he may become wise.”
“I will meditate on your precepts and fix my eyes on your ways.”
2 Corinthians 10:5
“We destroy arguments and every lofty opinion raised against the knowledge of God, and take every thought captive to obey Christ.”
Relationships are complex at best. Co-parenting relationship with your children’s father can add a whole new level of complexity, emotion, stress and frustration to your life. Everyone’s relationship is different. I know women who have wonderful relationships with their children’s father, so good that it is hard to believe they are divorced! On the other side of the spectrum I’ve known women who literally do not talk to their children’s father at all and have a mediator or go between. Co-parenting relationships take time, patience and respect and are filled with peaks and valleys, but what matters most are the kids. Regardless of the divorce and the relationship afterward, most people agree that they love their kids and their happiness is what is important.
Many of the moms I speak to are completely burned out, not by the responsibilities, the kids, their job, or even finances, but it is their ex! There is so much hurt, anger, bitterness, and baggage that it consumes them. It eats at them day in and day out, so they vent…and vent… and vent. Listen, I get it! Sometimes you just need to let loose, but there comes a point when you have to let go as well. When we spend our energy bad mouthing and complaining about our ex, we are still living as though we are in the relationship! Moving on and creating something new becomes impossible, because of the negativity.
Dare, I say instead of badmouthing, become the peacemaker? No one is expecting that everything will be roses overnight, but do you want to live out the next however many years in a state of anger? Bad mouthing never really makes you feel better, it leaves a residue that sticks to you. Badmouthing pricks at your spirit, and convicts you. You know in your heart that God doesn’t want us to tear one another to pieces with our words. It is especially damaging if it is done in front of the kids. The longer you bad mouth the more exhausting it becomes because negativity is poisonous and zaps our energy and our light as Christians.
Divorce is heartbreaking, whether you both agree to it or not, so if you can work at creating something new for the sake of your family, why not do it? Our kids watch us and giving them an example that is rooted in respect will have a big impact, but so does badmouthing. Galatians 5:15 says, “If you bite and devour each other, watch out or you will be destroyed by each other.” The enemy wants us to take a tough situation and make it worse by keeping us biting at one another until there is nothing left. Don’t allow it to happen.
I don’t know your ex or your circumstances and I’m not making light of any situation. There are some cases where an ex boyfriend or husband are physically abusive and dangerous and in those cases there is usually no relationship for reasons of physical and emotional safety. But, if that is not the case, coming to a place where you stop the badmouthing and start recreating the narrative will only be better for you and everyone involved. My number one way to do this is to pray! Ask God to bring you to a place of peace, ask him to heal the hurt, to bring the co-parenting relationship to a place of respect.
I can’t wait for you to dig deeper into this tip in my upcoming e-book, “15 Tips to Avoid Single Mom Burnout.”
It’s been a long time! I’m so sorry! Life has been so busy. New job, kid’s stuff, house stuff, life stuff…oy! This past weekend I had the privilege to host a Girls Workshop at our Ladies’ Inspirational Day! What a whirlwind and rollercoaster of emotion! But God’s grace is sufficient! The whole day was a blessing!
Well, except when I had a mini breakdown because I started having that stinking about how I wasn’t prepared, and how could I encourage young girls when I’m a hot mess right now! But, thanks to my sweet sisters who God just poured his grace through to shower on me with their love, I was blessed and was able to give the message God had placed on my heart! Even messes our blessings, sometimes our biggest blessings because we see God’s hand at work!
I wanted to share the study guide I gave the girls, “Do Your Choices Produce a Harvest or a Famine?” with you all! I’m thinking about turning into a Bible Study or a more developed e-book. I would love to hear your thoughts!
There are so many ingredients that go into baking up your dreams! We need prayer, perseverance, a plan, and action! Action is the primary step in making our vision a reality. Without action, dreams simply can’t come true! God will equip you and has equipped you, but it’s mandatory that we participate. When our dreams are big even the smallest steps seem daunting, but each step you take matters! Carve out time to pursue your passion! You owe it to your dreams to be intentional about manifesting them in the world! Don’t regret what you could have done, do it! Remember everyone who ever had a dream had to take a step!