Are You Struggling? Scared? Not Sure How You Will Make It Another Day…Jesus Already Has a Plan For You!

Are there days, weeks, or months, that you wonder, how on earth you will make it through? How you will pay the mortgage, put food on the table or gas in the car? Are the mount of bills piling up resembling Mount Everest? Every time you make a deposit to save, are you also making a withdraw for some unexpected expense? I’ve been there, and this month in particular seriously brought me to me knees financially!

I started a new job that I absolutely love, but I get paid monthly. I’ve been paid monthly before, but I miscalculated the pays from my previous job and it left me in a pickle, to put it mildly. I’m not a big spender, but I live in the DC metro area, which is extremely expensive. So, miscalculating a paycheck is enough to throw a serious monkey wrench in the budget. Not to mention there were unexpected expenses, such as eyeglasses for my daughter, I higher deposit for a new school, and all those little things that add up. My bank account was thin and I was struggling folks.

I felt anxious, scared, angry at myself and to be honest I was exhausted! A big part of that unrest came from not trusting in the Lord’s provision. When I was reading John 6 this morning, I was struck by the passage, 6:5, “When Jesus looked up and saw the great crowd coming toward him, he said to Philip,” Where shall we buy bread for these people to eat?” He asked this only to test him, for he already had in mind what he was going to do.” Jesus already knew what he was going to do. Philip was faced with this situation that appeared to be insurmountable! How would he feed these thousands of people?

Philip automatically went logical on Jesus, right? He said, look, 8 months wages wouldn’t be enough to feed these people! I can totally relate to his reaction, because it was the one I had this month. The impossibility of the situation was overwhelming, and logically I could not see how the dollars would stretch. Just like Philip who gazed out and saw the hoards of people with no plan to feed them.

But, Jesus had a plan! Doesn’t he always? Jesus was testing Philip. Those pesky tests, get us every time, don’t they? When we are tested whether it be in our finances, health, family, or whatever area, it isn’t God being cruel. It is the Lord showing us his awesome provision, and sovereignty in our lives. It may not feel so awesome at the time, but there is a reason for the season we are in. We often have the tendency to look for an outward solution, instead of turning to Jesus. We look at our problem with human instead of spiritual eyes. Human eyes rationalize and don’t take the spiritual in account. Spiritual eyes, see the limitless possibilities of Christ. Spiritual eyes remind us that Jesus takes our impossible situation and show his love for us through it in the most remarkable ways.

What strikes me to in John 6 is the instrument that Jesus uses to feed the people. He uses a boy with 5 small barley loaves and two small fish. I’m sure the disciples were confused and hardly convinced that mere amount was enough. But, Jesus not only made it enough he created an abundance! Notice, too , he didn’t have a rich king show up to feed the people. He used the least likely, the smallest… a child as a vehicle to show his power. How many times has Jesus used the people you’d never expect to show up, and show up big in your life! We need to remember that through tiny vessels Jesus does extraordinary things!

Through this crazy and scarce month I’ve been shown the love of Jesus through so many unexpected blessings. My new boss gave me a title change, and a $5,000 raise in 3 days! The finance office at my daughter’s new school worked with me on pushing up the first tuition payment. My 13 year old daughter earned over $250 in babysitting money, so he had her own money to spend if she wanted to hang out with friends. My parents gave me money to make up the difference on my rent (and my sweet dad, has made it a point to tell me to not worry about getting it back, but I will ). I was able to push up my car loan payment and insurance as well. God has just spread a blanket of provision and abundance over me and my daughter!

God took my barley loaves and fish, and created a full meal. Friend, he will create a full meal of provision and abundance for you too. If you are facing a tough time know this…Jesus already has a plan! I so desire for you to rest in this truth. He knows your suffering, fear, and most of all your heart. This difficult time, may be a test for you to draw closer and lean on Jesus rather than your on capabilities. He will come though! When he does I hope you sit at the table full of gratitude and enjoy and not waste any morsel of his absolute love for you.

I will be glad when August 30th rolls around and that first paycheck comes in, but I know until then and afterwards, Jesus will feed me! He always has and he always will!

Thirsty? Drink in The Word of God!

Psalm 42:1 “As the deer pants for streams of water, so my soul pants for you, my God.”

The first tip in my upcoming eBook to Avoid Single Mom Burnout is to “Schedule a Daily Date with God! The world is a tough contender! It will knock you out of the ring with a punch you never saw coming. I’m sure you’ve had a few TKO’s in your life, right? You’re going about your business and bam, you get sucker punched! It makes me think about the movie Rocky. Poor Rock, bloodied, and bent over in the corner with Mickey wiping his face and squirting water into his mouth. That’s us after a tough bout with the world! We are left parched, bruised and spiritually dehydrated.

It’s tempting to drink the water the world offers. The enemy wants to keep you thirsty! It is all in Satan’s plan. You make a choice to follow the enemy’s plan instead of God’s plan when you start drinking anything that looks good! Don’t be fooled, by its empty promises it will never fulfill you like God’s living water. The satisfaction you receive from the world’s water is temporary. It may taste good, for awhile, but I promise you it will leave you thirstier than before. Only God is the permanent solution to spiritual dehydration.

Suffering From Spiritual Dehydration?

Do you feel hopeless? Do you feel spiritually lost? Is your faith floundering? Are you questioning your purpose? Do you feel a loss of joy? Does God seem far away from you? If you answered yes, you have the classic symptoms of spiritual dehydration.

Health experts suggest drinking a glass of water in the morning to rehydrate. But, if you’re suffering from spiritual dehydration, it will take more than water to replenish your spirit! You need a big gulp of God’s word to kick start your day! We need to nourish ourselves with the word of God on a daily basis. We need to be insatiable when it comes to drinking in the scriptures.

God’s word is our shelter, armor, blueprint for life and a place of refuge from the storms. Scriptures guides and reminds us that God is present. He is alive and loves us in all our imperfections. The word is living and breathing and gives us life, so drink it in! Be like the deer panting near the water, pant for the water that feeds your soul. Be intentional about scheduling a date with God and drinking him in, so that your light continues to shine and your faith is continually renewed.

The Lord Restores

During this Holy Week, I can’t help but to reflect on the ultimate sacrifice and love of God… the crucifixion of Christ. Christ who was sinless, died for our sins, to give us undeserved forgiveness and to save our souls. There is not better friend than the one we have in Jesus. I think about this absolute truth when I think of suffering. When we are in a season of suffering it’s so easy to be suffocated under the weight of hopelessness. The feeling that there is no ending is sight. But, this scripture in Peter reminds us that God restores.
We were lost and God gave us the opportunity to be restored through death of Christ. Through every season of suffering you can count on God bringing forth a season of restoration. When restoration from the Lord occurs it is in some ways greater than our suffering. Not to belittle loss or suffering, but it brings about a strength in our faith that I believe God specifically uses for his glory. When you’ve endured a particularly difficult season, and God restores you, and makes you steadfast and firm in a new season, you have a testimony to share. Through your suffering and restoration you can bring hope to another one of God’s children. Never think that your suffering isn’t connected to a bigger purpose. As children of God we are in community and connection with the body of Christ. Your experience in suffering and restoration are significant and purposeful. Rest assure there is nothing God can not restore and use for his plan. If you have any doubt, think about Jesus dying on the cross for you, he was steadfast then and he is steadfast now, by your side always.

Fear or Faith…What Will You Choose?

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We can live either by faith or by fear ! One is life thwarting and the other is life-givingOne allows you to rest in the assurance that God has a plan for you that is better and more beautiful than you could have ever dreamed up for yourself!  Fear robs you from living out God’s plan for your life. Fear keeps your gifts, talents and abilities under wraps. Fear keeps you living in a paralyzed state of doubt and anxiety . Fear snatches away your dreams and tells you that you’re not good enough, smart enough, and that amazing things happen to other people not you! Faith gives you Christ filled courage and gives you the confidence to step out in the unknown, expecting God’s best even in the midst of obstacles. It’s your choice whether you will live in faith or fear. Make the choice that leads to being an active participant in life and not an observer full of potential that lies dormant and stops you from living authentically!

When You Are Consumed… Know That God’s Compassion is Present

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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.

 

Dig Deep Into the Character of God

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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!

Look Through a Different Lens and Change Your Life!

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Are you tired of getting the same results? Bored with the same routines and habits that leave you feeling depleted? Are you ready to not just have potential, but to actually live on purpose? Then it may be time look at life through a different lens. Changing our life sometimes requires us to change the lens we are looking though? Maybe you need a wider lens, one that allows you to see beyond what is in front of you. How is your spiritual lens? Do you see the bigger plan that God has in store for you? Or is your current lens blocking the full scope of His will for your life?

A new year around the corner and many of us will make resolutions and break them within the month. Why? We are creatures of habit, routines, and not necessarily ones that push us forward, but the ones that keep you comfortable, complacent and stuck! When you reflect on 2018, do you feel that you lived your best life? Did you step outside the box? Did you dare to do different or better? Do you actually see how important you are to the kingdom of God and are you contributing your spiritual gifts to build it up? God has an amazing picture for your life but, you have to look through the correct lens to bring it to fruition! If your vision is limited your life will be limited. Decide this year, this moment to get a long wide lens that will allow you to see beyond even your expectations, and see the bigger picture, the bigger you that is fully equipped to live a life that reflects the handiwork of your Father! Change your lens and you will change your life!