Acceptance

Serenity

“God grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change, the courage to change the things I can, and the wisdom to know the difference.” The Serenity Prayer

This part of the Serenity Prayer speaks directly to me. Accepting what I cannot change puts me in a place to see what I can change. We cannot change others. We inspire them to change themselves (allowing the transformative power of God to move) as we model what that looks like. It is a part of growth that is necessary because it clears our perspective and allows us to move forward. I truly believe that transformative change comes from God because it begins with humility.

1 Peter 5:6 – “Humble yourselves, therefore, under the mighty hand of God so that at the proper time He may exalt you,”

God’s Hand

Surrendering to God that He is the omnipotent power is the beginning; accepting that we cannot change anyone but ourselves. Yet, we need His mercy and grace even for that part.

Once you have a clear perspective, you can then ask Him for the courage or power to change the things you can. What does that look like in your life? We all have areas in which we move for change. I only know what that looks like in my life. You know what that looks like in yours. God knows what that looks like for everyone. The Word of God tells us do not fear but be of good courage. He was clear in speaking to Joshua, telling him not to fear but be of good courage.

Joshua 1:9 – “Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous. Do not be frightened, and do not be dismayed for the Lord your God is with you wherever you go.”

The Word tells us that He has given us a spirit of love, power, and a sound mind. We can move for change because God is faithful to His Word.

Last, but certainly not least, we need to move in wisdom. God’s Word tells us that:

James 1:5 – “If any man lacks wisdom, let him ask God, who gives generously to all without reproach, and it will be given him.”

True wisdom comes from God. He is the all-powerful, all-knowing, present everywhere God. This prayer speaks truly to who God is on this journey. I would say that speaking this prayer out loud everyday moves us out of the way for Him to do what only He can do. Change us for His glory.

He died for me.

Affirmations and Change

I was thinking about the previous post on November 27th, Change, and wanted to expound on that a little. Affirmations help us change; however, only if you believe what you are saying to yourself. Sure, repetition is key as we move forward in growth. It is important to understand that faith is a critical key to changing.

I use Bible promises for my affirmations. I will tell you though that I didn’t begin to see the transformation until I believed what God said about me and His promises to me. Psalm 18:30 – “This God-His way is perfect, the word of the Lord proves true; He is a shield for all those who take refuge in Him.”

It truly was the supplement I needed to continue truly growing. The repetition of the affirmations is like reinforcing the glue. Belief is what makes it stick. It is the glue. Even if we fall down (miss a day), we get back up and continue moving forward on our journey.

Believing what you speak to yourself determines what you believe. What are you believing that is impacting your ability to change? Something to ponder regarding your growth, your goals and your life.

Change

Deep Thought

Hello everyone. Today I come from a place in my heart. It is that if you really want things to change, you have to change things. Coming from a weekend of training on empowerment, I am excited that no matter how bad things may look, circumstances do change. How you perceive your circumstances is critical. Should you believe you won’t overcome them, you won’t. Should you believe you will overcome them, you will.

Change requires action. Whether small steps, medium steps, or big steps doesn’t matter. Taking action is what does. Do you really want things to change? I ask again. Do you really want things to change for you? Then start to make changes. First change is mindset. How are you thinking about what needs to change? I can do all things through Christ. Evaluate. Look at all that’s going on around you. What can you do to start your change process? What’s in your control? What’s not?

Ask yourself the hard questions about your life. No one knows the details about your life but you and God. He will help you and He is faithful. Call to me and I will answer He says. He is the all-knowing and all-powerful God.

Self-Discipline and Change

Self-Discipline and Change

I have written about self-discipline before. Today I would like to offer a practical application. This application also offers a way to manage your time as well. Allocate a time slot to take at least one step towards a goal. For instance, everyday from 10 am to 11 am is devoted to this one step. You may have a goal of becoming a better writer (only you know). So, now you commit to that one hour every day, whether you read, diligently search the web, evaluate how you would like to become better, etc.

However, I would like to emphatically insist that you don’t multi-task. Focus on this one particular task. Do not include the dinner menu, the shopping list, etc. These details are specific because they are key to establishing your new habit. Action enforces motivation. Not only that, now you are better utilizing your time. This commitment helps you work on your self-discipline as well. Commitment is critical to self-discipline and self-discipline requires commitment. Dedication and application are key elements of commitment.

What areas in your life now require self-discipline? Is mastering your time a need right now? Whether business or personal, change has to come to realize your goals and/or dreams. Evaluate your life right now. You cannot commit to something of which you are unaware.

Self-Discipline

This post is about self-discipline. However, I did want to make sure to add information about the difference between self-discipline and self-control. We understand that self-control is being able to control our temperaments and lustful desires.

Self-discipline is about correction or regulation of oneself for the sake of improvement. Self-discipline is focusing on areas that need to change and incorporating those things that propel us toward those changes. It is about applying the tools that you learn so you do life better. Incorporating self-discipline influences self-control.

2nd Timothy 1:7 – “For God has not given us a spirit of fear and timidity, but of power, love, and self-discipline.” The NLT replaced “a sound mind” with “self-discipline”.

The reference Scripture for 2nd Timothy 1:7 is Romans 8:15

Romans 8:15 – “So you have not receive a spirit that makes you fearful slaves. Instead, you received God’s Spirit when He adopted you as His own children. Now, we call Him, “Abba, Father.”

Self-discipline takes work on your part to do the inventory and see what needs to change. However, “we can do all things through Christ.” My encouragement today is that we can work on our selves. We can apply what we learn so that we can live abundant lives. Jesus came that we might have abundant life. He did His part so that we can do ours.

Be blessed.

Incorporating self-discipline influences self-control.

Self-Control

Even on the Cloudy Days

Self-Control is described as restraint exercised over one’s own impulses, emotions or desires.

Galatians 5:23 – “…gentleness, and self-control. There is no law against these things!”

Proverbs 5:21-23 – 21) For the Lord sees clearly what a man does, examining every path he takes. 22) An evil man is held captive by his own sins; they are ropes that catch and hold him. 23) He will die for lack of self-control; he willl be lost because of his great foolishness.”

Proverbs 16:32 -“Better to be patient than powerful; better to have self-control than to conquer a city.”

Losing control can cause you to forfeit what you want the most. Losing self-control means your temper or the emotion of anger has taken control. Application of biblical principles moves us from just having knowledge to a life-changing experience.

Self-control is a fruit of the Spirit. All of us are challenged with the self-control at one point or another. This is not the same as maintaining self-control for the most part. Challenges should not be able to continually overtake you. As a fruit of the Spirit, you should be able to experience the emotion and yet instead of losing control, you are able to maintain self-control. I wanted to present this information from the biblical perspective. There is much material out there on self-control; from a psychological perspective, humane perspective, as well as a self-help perspective.

This choice from the biblical perspective is based on inner transformation because it changes you. It is not focused on behaviors but based on the work of the Spirit of God. This means that you are not working on how you act (behavior). Instead, it is how you respond. Applying biblical principles changes who you are. That said, how you react is based on who you become and not what you do. Self-control is not easy because the flesh wants what the flesh wants. However, that is the significance between changing the inner man from the heart as opposed to changing behaviors.

Psalm 37:8 – “Stop being angry! Turn from your rage! Do not lose your temper-it only leads to harm.” Everyone involved in any given situation is harmed when anger is not put to bed. Doesn’t mean you don’t feel or you haven’t been hurt. Just means you refuse to let your emotions rule you.

Apparently, the Scriptures have plenty to say about self-control. I have included some Scriptures for you to review and meditate on. I personally do not believe that I can live an abundant life without God. That includes mental, emotional, spiritual, and physical. In that vein, it is about making the spiritual man your center. That is the foundation of true self-control.

It should be clear that anger is not the only emotion that requires self-control.

I listed some other Scriptures for you, the reader, to do your own legwork. Get in there and let God’s word speak to you.

1Timothy 3:2; 1 Timothy 3:11; Titus 2:2; 1 Peter 1:13; 2 Peter 1:6

Be blessed…

Be Deliberate

God does laugh at our plans at times. He is truly the one in control, His plans prevail. We can make our plans, but He determines our steps ~ (Proverbs 16:9). The closer I get to God, the more my plans fall in line with His. The Word says to delight yourself in the Lord and He will give you the desires of your heart ~ (Psalm 37:4) .

That said, it’s time for us to be deliberate about our days. Be deliberate in your relationship with Christ. Be deliberate in doing the things you say. I can understand the challenge in that because things do pop up. However, I have realized for myself that the more deliberate I am, the more I stay on track. Prepare your days as best you can and leave the rest up to God. Your desires change the closer you get to God. God loves you and the closer you get to Him, the more you see that. So let’s be deliberate.

The enemy comes to steal, kill and destroy. At what point do we take this seriously? The devil is real. The news feeds are full of hate crimes, crimes of passion, disregard for human life as well as mental illness run rampant just to name a few. Our only hope is in Jesus.

Navigating

Keep moving ahead!

My hope and prayer for anyone reading this post is that you are doing well. I wanted to talk about navigating. Typically refers to steering ourselves in a particular direction or plotting our course. In driving, most of us use an app to help us get where we want to go.

I am navigating this new course God has me on, life coaching. Yes, I do have an app, God. I just wanted to say that navigating new direction is about taking one day at a time. It didn’t start yesterday, however, and that is why it’s one day at a time. Gathering momentum, clarity, focus and consistency in the new direction takes time.

For anyone out there going in a new direction, don’t quit. Breathe, pray, and keep going. Short but sweet and hopefully helpful in your thought process. I must add a last but not least note that all of it is only by His grace.

Have a blessed week!

Silence, A Necessity for the Soul

Silence 1The cacophony of sounds was overwhelming. The constant whirring of the air conditioner and the microwave vent was very loud and constant but over that she could also hear the X-box game, the TV from the bedroom as well as the conversations of the other people in the confined space. Her appreciation of quiet was never more desired or needed than in this moment of time. Deeply inhaling a breath and releasing it helped her to focus on her breathing. She realized as she took another deep breath that she could at least ward off the irritation that wanted to take control of her emotions and body. The value of silence is now recognized as necessary. She thought about how God felt when He wanted to get her attention and the noise was blocking His whisper. The sounds of the world calling for the attention that was due Him.

Silence 3The sounds from the television were evaluated. Reality shows that did not feed anything but the frivolous and shallow cares of a world that refused to recognize that the quality of what you feed the mind affects the quality of the results. She seemed to grasp in this thought process that many of the people calling for help in the world today may need to change what they fuel themselves with in order to realize a change. What would she be willing to change? Even though television had lost a great deal of the consumption of her time because of the financial costs, the other options used were still grabbing at the consumption wheel. Netflix and other options of choice were still available. She thought about the purging process of removing the things that were taking away from the intimacy with God. This was a part of that process.

Having the choice to replace television with other options is indeed a good thing for the most part. However, it has been replaced with (X-Box, Playstation) war games and other such choices that still do not contribute to soul’s well-being. The time spent fighting the virtual reality characters and dodging bullets, driving fast cars, manipulating to kill everything and everybody to score points is truly a noise that takes away from the additional work the enemy would have to do. She thought about how being consumed by the games keeps us unaware of the tactics of the enemy at work in the environment around us. How much more time could be spent in prayer or reading the Word of God? Or, just being silent to allow the Holy Spirit to minister to the soul? She thought about how many have been duped out of a deeper relationship with Christ.

Silence 2Family and friends are very significant and valuable to our lives. However, in the moment of recognition that silence is also a necessary fuel to maintaining strength and sanity, she realized that she would need to make sure to find that time and place to feel the silence; to relish the moment when the only thing she could hear would be her own breathing. She also realized that the intimacy of her relationship with God would grow exponentially if she could practice even her own silence. This epiphany moment of realizing that silence is a necessary food for the soul brought a quiet inside of her that she truly appreciated.

Free Flow Friday…What Does My Billboard Say?

Sandra's-BillboardFree Flow Fridays…What’s your sign?

My billboard would say that I am always working on improvement. My personality gives me the freedom to accept that change is necessary in some areas. That freedom doesn’t mean it has been easy. After fellowship with my Father in Heaven, I then move forward. There have been times when the changes were necessary and other times when the change was not needed. I have discovered that in trying to make sure everyone understands me created difficult moments for me when they didn’t understand. I have also learned that there have been many moments when I didn’t understand myself.
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