Denial Can Be a Dangerous Thing

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This one definitely gave me pause. What quality or aspect of your life are you most defensive about?

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Waiting On You (A Poem)

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by Nichole H. Stewart

I have been waiting on you
Patiently
Waiting
Knees bent
Head bowed
Hands clasped

Waiting

For you to move
In my life
Like a whispering wind
Or a mighty gale

Waiting

Climbing tooth and nail
From this valley
Straining
Toward the mountaintop
But still…

Waiting

Refusing to doubt
Never looking down
Gazing only at you
As the waves toss and turn and churn
beneath my feet

Waiting

Trusting
In your promises
And believing
That I am not alone
Never forsaken

Waiting

Knowing
Your ways are not my ways
And wanting
Only what you have
In store
In your time
And not my own

Waiting…

I
Will
Wait
For
You.

Tied up in Knots

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SURRENDER (Part 3)

I just read a devotional from Joyce Meyer in “Promises for Your Everyday Life” that equated the problems in our lives to a series of knots in numerous shoestrings. She pointed out that just as it took a length of time for us to get all tangled up in our knotted mess, it will take time to get to a place where we unravel those knots and are free from the tangle. Thankfully, God is hard at work helping us to break free, and he unravels each knot with his infinite patience…never giving up, never making the situation worse…in His perfect timing, He slowly works to make us whole again.

I thought of a similar analogy involving my bi-weekly massages and these incessant knots that my therapist always finds in my shoulders (that’s where I hold my stress). They’ve been there for years, and many a therapist have gone about trying to break them up and relieve my pain…but I always refuse to let them! Why? Because it HURTS! I have spent YEARS growing those knots through my stress and worry and poor self-care, and they do NOT want to go away easily. They’ve become a part of me, and I’ve grown accustomed to them. Besides, it’s easier to deal with the occasional discomfort and limitations of the knots than the painful process of working them out.

It’s the same way with God, when he tries to relieve us of our “knots.” The process can sometimes be long and painful…and those knots might even feel like a part of us now, because we’re so used to them. But if we can endure the painful process and get to the other side…allowing God to do His work in us, then we are so much better off for it! In the end, we are freer, able to bend and stretch and grow in so many more directions…stronger because now our (spiritual) muscles can bear more, and we are better prepared (without those incessant knots restricting us) to go about the business of fulfilling the calling that God has placed upon our lives.

Is God trying to loose a few knots in your life? Are you resisting the process or opening yourself up to endure the discomfort so that God can take you to a better place in Him? Don’t stay tied up in knots! Surrender to the process, and let God do the work in you to set you free from the tangled mess!

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Philippians 1:6 – “And I am sure of this, that he who began a good work in you will bring it to completion at the day of Jesus Christ.”

2 Corinthians 2:8 – “And we all, with unveiled face, beholding the glory of the Lord, are being transformed into the same image from one degree of glory to another. For this comes from the Lord who is the Spirit.”

Jeremiah 18:3-4 – “Then I went down to the potter’s house, and there he was, making something at the wheel. And the vessel that he made of clay was marred in the hand of the potter; so he made it again into another vessel, as it seemed good to the potter to make.”

Psalm 66:10 – “For You, O God, have proved us; You have tried us as silver is tried, refined, and purified.”

Song: Potter’s House by Vashawn Mitchell

Song: Refine Me by Ayiesha Woods

Thoughts, reactions, or testimonies? Leave a comment below. I look forward to hearing from you!

Shine Your Light!

Wonderful images taken from

  1. http://www.publicdomainpictures.net/view-image.php?image=48861
  2. http://www.robertcorneliusphotography.com/blog/but-i-didnt-push-the-button

The Everyman

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SURRENDER

The other morning, I was thinking about how much Jesus was like the “everyman.” He wrestled with anger and fear; He felt disappointment when His friends let Him down; He experienced loss, rejection, false love, and betrayal…trying situations and emotions that most of us have experienced at one point or another in our lives. But the difference between Jesus and so many of us (outside of His being the Son of God and all 🙂 ) is that He knew exactly where to turn when He endured these earthly trials. He turned to His Heavenly Father and gave himself over, fully, to God’s will and His way. He surrendered Himself completely to God’s plan for His life; and in return, God gifted Him with abundant wisdom, unshakable peace, boundless courage, unfailing love, and a power beyond anything the Earth had ever seen!


What wonders could we accomplish, what mountains could we move, what strongholds could we demolish if we were only willing to give God our whole selves…holding NOTHING back? We would be earth shakers, mighty warriors of God, bringing His light and His love to a desperate and dying world and demonstrating with clarity to all around us the power and freedom that lies in complete and total surrender to God.

Luke 22:43 – “Father, if you are willing, take this cup from me; yet not my will, but yours be done.”

Thoughts, reactions, or testimonies? Leave a comment below. I look forward to hearing from you!

Song: He Wants It All by Forever Jones

Shine Your Light!

Embrace Your Superpower!

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SPIRITUAL GIFTS

1 Corinthians 12:7 – To each is given the manifestation of the Spirit for the common good.

The other day, my brother and I were talking about his uncanny ability to accurately judge a person’s character within a few seconds (minutes?) of meeting him. I’ve always known that he had this talent, but I took it with a grain of salt until he revealed during this particular conversation that sometimes, it was almost as if he could see something dark clinging to certain people who made him more wary. I was taken aback, because this indicated that he’d been gifted with the ability to discern things in the spiritual realm, and that I’d better start heeding his impressions moving forward.

I have to admit that I was just a little jealous. It was like he had this cool superpower! How great is it to be able to discern people’s character before they’ve said a single word!? My gift was so completely different and seemed paltry in comparison. I had this somewhat less exceptional (and not always useful) gift of always seeing the best in people, until their dark or hidden side emerged and the relationship (friendly, romantic, familial, or otherwise) blew up in my face. My penchant for seeing the good has actually made me increasingly wary of opening up to people and trusting them and their permanency in my life.

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I pondered this for a while on that day, and eventually realized that this insight into the light in someone’s character wasn’t all bad. In fact, I began to understand that this tendency was a reflection of the gift of empathy—my own superpower! 🙂 I have always been hypersensitive to other people’s feelings, to the point of almost experiencing physical discomfort at the sight of pain in others. I’ve also had a penchant for understanding innately the emotions that certain scenarios and experiences trigger in others, which helps me understand (and empathize with) why they sometimes misguidedly embrace the dark side. This gift, while challenging at times, is the perfect complement to my calling to help and serve. As always, God knows what He’s doing!

We all have our spiritual gifts and talents, although they may manifest in different ways and at different times for different people. It’s easy to look longingly at someone else’s gift and think it’s the best thing in the world; but know that someone else may be looking at you in the exact same way. Your gift is special, useful, and uniquely tailor-made just for you and the calling God has placed on Your life. Embrace your gift, be grateful for it, and use it wisely and in love. After all, it’s pretty cool to have your own God-given superpower. 🙂

Thoughts, reactions, or testimonies? Leave a comment below. I look forward to hearing from you!

Shine your light!

1 Corinthians 12:4 – There are different kinds of spiritual gifts, but the same Spirit is the source of them all.

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