Have you ever been given a second chance? Or maybe third or tenth chance for something? I’ve recently accomplished a goal and the concept of chances came up for me. The goal I accomplished wasn’t a new goal, it’s a goal I’ve actually been working on for years. Over the years I’ve hit the goal several times, but somehow found myself right back where I didn’t want to be.
This time…something felt different. My mind shifted in a new way that will not even allow me to go backwards again. I realized the amount of chances I’ve had over the years for the same thing and felt sickened thinking about going down the same road again. I realized this is the moment I’ve been striving for over the years. It’s over. I’m done. I made it and there is no looking back.
My gratitude went through the roof as I realized if not given all those chances over the years, I would never be where I am right now. I realized the Creator of chances deserved my heart of gratitude and words of thankfulness for finding me worthy of chances. Chances allowed me to grow and mature until I was ready for the next phase. Chances didn’t mess up any of my future opportunities, but just allowed more time for me to catch up to the future already planned for me. Whew! Got choked up after writing that one. 🙌🏽
My future is brighter because of chances. I’m more grateful because of chances. I’ve gained more peace and freedom because of chances. I thank God for every chance He has given me to bring me to the future He had already planned. 🙏🏽
What’s in YOU will attract what’s around YOU! Dr. TC
I heard this statement recently in my Beautycounter business meeting I attended earlier this week, and it really STRUCK and STUCK with me. I immediately began to mentally scan the spaces I occupy and the people in those spaces. I will say, after many years of dealing with lost friendships, navigating challenging relationships, etc. I am happy with the circles in which I presently interact. I am surrounded by some really good people with mutual reciprocity.
What’s your vibe? Are you attracting the tribe you desire? Attracting the tribe you desire first begins with becoming the person you want to be. Positive energy attracts positive experiences and relationships; as goes for negative energy attracts negative experiences and relationships.
I would characterize my present tribe like this:
✨Never give upers 😉
When you find the right people to connect with there is great reward in your connection experiences, even if you don’t live in the same city or talk every day. When you do get together, it’s like a breath of fresh air. You just fit…quite comfortably!
What’s your vibe? How would you describe your tribe?
Pressure. Pressure is defined as the physical force exerted on an object. Pressure is heavy. Pressure makes you sweat profusely. Pressure feels unbearable and nearly impossible to hold. Pressure feels like every muscle is being stretched to its limit. Pressure consumes your thoughts and tries to take over your emotions. Pressure is painful to your mind, body, and spirit. And this, my friends, is the feeling of faith.
Standing in faith is not a passive position. It’s not easy. When you are standing in faith, every ounce of your being is activated to help you believe what you can not see. Choosing to stand in faith means there is an equal and opposite force desiring you to give up, throw in the towel, and surrender your power. This creates a tremendous amount of consistent pressure, that often intensifies as you get closer to the end of a thing. When you are resisting the pressure to give up and stand in faith, you often have to fight against anxiety, feelings of failure and inadequacy. As you continue to intentionally stand on God’s Word and let His power within you work against your opposition, you develop faith muscles that take you from inadequacy…to enough…to abundance!
This message of standing in faith under pressure reminds me of a diamond. From the web, “diamonds are formed deep within the earth’s mantle. Diamonds are brought to the earth’s surface during violent pressure and change. Under the duress of approximately 725,000 pounds per square inch, and at temperatures of 2000 – 2200 degrees Fahrenheit, a diamond will begin to form.” Extreme pressure and heat brings diamonds to the Earth’s surface. Think about it, we were formed from the Earth just like diamonds. God created pressure and pain, not to break us, but to make us.
Even in my own faith walk under pressure, I’m holding on to my faith. I’m going to prove to myself that my life is not my own, that God fights for me, that the power within me WILL move mountains.
Join me in your own walk of true faith under pressure. Let’s go from inadequacy…to enough…to abundance!
Being GR8 requires consistency. I have witnessed plenty of people who start off GR8 and end up ordinary. GR8 people are constantly striving to do the extraordinary. GR8 people take risks. GR8 people invest in themselves and are found frequently perfecting their craft.
GR8 people demonstrate GR8ness consistently. This means GR8 people remain GR8 even under pressure. GR8 people are resilient and have integrity. GR8 people push the limits within themselves to see just how far they can go. GR8 people answer the question, “Can I do this?” with answer, “I certainly will try!”
The GR8ness in me was inspired to ignite the GR8ness in you for a season. This pandemic has been a blessing and a curse for many. GR8 people can more easily embrace the blessing in these times by focusing on not what is…but the possibility of what can be!
I’m gaining a new perspective of God being my father, which brings tears to my eyes. You see, I didn’t grow up with a consistent father figure. His inconsistencies and not being there when I really needed him has left me with a deep desire for security from a father/male figure my entire life. I just want to feel taken care of and feel that what I can’t do on my own, somebody cares enough about me to recognize my needs and step in to help me without me even asking. This has been an ongoing need and battle in my life.
Throughout my life, I attributed my perspective of my human father as that of my spiritual father, emotionally disconnected from my true needs and desires. I knew God loved me, but didn’t think He really cared about my needs or desires. Presently, not only is God showing me He loves me, but He loves me so much, it is His pleasure to not only provide my needs, give me some things that I want, but also make dreams come true for me! I am experiencing a powerful kind of love at age 39 I have wanted my entire life. Watching God make dreams come true in my life, dreams I didn’t even know I still wanted, is overwhelmingly joyful.
My message in this is simple…God loves you deeply. He will move mountains for you. He will rebuke sickness and death for you. He will perform miracles just for you. Receive not only His deep love for you, receive His true commitment to you and your well-being.
**If you are reading this and are struggling to connect with God, reach out to me for support and prayer. I’m here for you.**
“For God hath not given us the spirit of fear; but of power, and of love, and of a sound mind.” 2 Timonthy 1:7
I want to stop here: “For God hath not given us a spirit of fear; but of power…” POWER! When you recognize the power that lies within you, nothing is impossible. Courage is a true display of God’s power working within. I am so full at this moment because I can testify I used the power of courage recently that opened doors I didn’t even know were available to me. God knew, but I didn’t. Unbeknownst to me, I was holding the key. When you intentionally put fear in its place and intentionally choose to operate in courage, you will then realize the true magnitude of the God-given power you possess. You don’t have to develop this power, it was freely given to you. You just have to learn how to work your power. The ball is in your court.
I’m skilled at several things which makes it challenging to define my craft. What I’m realizing is my craft is to create. I love to look at images of home decor styles and create the look in reality. I love creating new experiences for others that expands their ability to dream for themselves. I love to create new, innovative learning experiences for our son. I create an atmosphere of support as I lead others to total wellness through my fitness programs. I create genuine spiritual encounters as I lead in ministry. I love to create new vegan dishes as I lead our family to better health. I create unity as I intentionally build positive connections with people from different cultural backgrounds. I create new behaviors and new mindsets as I provide mental health therapy. I create businesses that meet needs. I create art with my written words. I create realities from dreams. What’s your craft?
It takes 200 muscles to take a single step forward…
For this month, I have shared the benefits of physical exercise with my group fitness class. One fact I shared with them on last week was, “It takes 200 muscles to take a single step forward.” This fact put a lot of things in perspective for me and I think for others as well. I actually had them guess how many muscles it takes, and the guesses where all under 10. The look of shock that hit their faces as they learned it actually takes 200 muscles to take a single step forward demonstrated a valuable life learning moment.
200 muscles! I pondered this fact myself and immediately began to feel very accomplished. I believe this fact not only relates to the physical, but to the mental and spiritual aspects of life as well. I reflected on all the “steps I have taken forward” without realizing the value and impact that “one step forward” has had on my life. I did that! I went for it! I moved! I took risks. I went for my dreams. I lunged towards my purpose. I dove into the unknown. I followed my heart. I overcame fear time and time again. I obeyed. I won!
Did you know oftentimes God is only looking for that single step forward? I know the first step is usually the hardest. I know the first step is sometimes like lifting lead. I know the first step requires a lot of effort, sacrifice, and will power. But…the first step breaks barriers, moves mountains, and gives you the motivation to keep going. The first step is the most important step. The first step in the right direction signifies the beginning of a new phase in life. Think about the excitement in seeing a baby take their very first step. If you are a parent, this is by far one of the most exciting memories of parenthood.
I’m encouraging you to move. It’s amazing how after you have taken the first step, the next steps automatically become easier.
I remember being afraid of thunderstorms. As the house shook and the windows rattled after a strong crack of lighting followed by that deep rumble of thunder, I would feel my body tense. I would imagine the thoughts of God as He orchestrated the show of His power on the Earth. I would always imagine God being angry, upset at something or someone. In my mind, these emotions matched the intensity of the raging storm.
On this week, I am exploring weather with my preschool son. We discussed The Water Cycle and on yesterday he wanted to just sit, listen, and watch out of the window as a storm was passing by. We listened for different sounds. He watched water collect on our lawn and discussed what would happen to the water after the sun came out. He also grabbed his Cat in the Hat book, as in the story, a brother and sister were also sitting in front of a window on a rainy day wishing for something to do. I also asked my young son, “Are you afraid of storms?” He replied, “No, the sun is behind the clouds.” He then preceded to pretend he was the sun and I was the clouds/storm fighting each other to come out. According to him, the sun was always the “superhero” (winner).
My spirit was stirred. First, I noticed how calm I was as this storm was passing by. I didn’t think twice about God being angry. I thought about what I wanted to model for my child as a parent, and after studying The Water Cycle, I thought about storms being just that….part of a process. I imagined God being as calm through the storm as He is on cloudless days. I thought about the fact that stormy days were necessary and served a purpose on the Earth. I thought about the flowers and trees that needed the storm to live and grow. I thought about the collection of rain water and the life it brought to animals and humans after the storm. I realized God was still in control and His protection was still secure, even through the most treacherous storms.
So it is in the spirit, whatever storms may rage in your life, trust and know God is in control and storms do not last always. Storms show up in your life for a divine purpose and leave at a divinely appointed time. The more you focus on God’s power in your life, the quicker the storm seems to pass.
“O Lord God of hosts, who is mighty as you are, O Lord, with your faithfulness all around you? 9 You rule the raging of the sea; when its waves rise, you still them.”
Pslam 89: 8-9 (KJV)
“He made the storm be still, and the waves of the sea were hushed.”
Psalm 107: 29
And he said to them, “Why are you afraid, O you of little faith?” Then he rose and rebuked the winds and the sea, and there was a great calm.
Matthew 8: 26
As stated by our young son, the sun always wins. Troubles do not last always. Joy really does come in the morning. You may not know which morning, but wake up expecting every morning to be the morning your storm will cease. Every season in life has a purpose. Rejoice in the Lord always. Thank Him for the storms and the sunny days of life. Whatever state you find yourself in, be content and watch God work!
I Plead the Fifth. Pleading the Fifth means to refuse to answer questions for fear of incriminating yourself. I have been working really hard lately to keep my mouth closed! Not so much towards other people, but towards myself. I am practicing not cursing my own words, and more importantly not cursing God’s Word over my life by complaining and speaking doubt.
It’s challenging. I do not remember the day I realized that I was delaying my own blessings by releasing certain words from my mouth, but it has truly been a shift in thinking, feeling, and my spiritual behavior. If God says I have the “power to move mountains”, I can no longer say “I’m powerless”. If God says “I will be wealthy”, I can no longer say, “I can’t ever get out of this debt.” If God says, “a turn around is about to take place in your life”, I can no longer say, “nothing ever changes.”
These are all real examples of the conversations I’ve had with God, and with the enemy. The moment God releases a Word from His mouth about you, is the very moment you have to choose to Plead the Fifth. It is not only your constitutional right, but your spiritual weapon to receive all that God has for you. The enemy hears what God says about you and immediately springs into action to discount, destroy, and delay the Word God spoke over your life. Here’s where we go wrong, God releases a Word and the enemy immediately springs into action against what was spoken. When we hear the release of God’s Word over our lives, we sit back and try to process and qualify ourselves with what God says about us and do not immediately spring into action. Instead, we stand in disbelief, telling God he has the wrong person, trying to figure out how it will happen, etc. We don’t immediately spring into action to guard our hearts and minds against evil talk and evil thoughts concerning the Word of God. Many of us say things such as, “I don’t want to do that.” “I’m too old/young/not smart enough to do that.” “That is too much responsibility.” “What would people say?” “I didn’t ask for all of that, God.” Meanwhile, the enemy has already taken the lead in our thoughts, emotions, and behaviors.
The wonderful news, God holds our position through our transition, one of my favorite quotes. He loves us so much He does not take back His Word concerning us and our future. God’s Word cannot return to Him void! There may be some delays, but never denials, unless we choose to forfeit our own blessings.
The Bible says in Proverbs 4: 23-27 (MSG), “Keep vigilant watch over your heart; that’s where life starts. Don’t talk out of both sides of your mouth; avoid careless banter, white lies, and gossip. Keep your eyes straight ahead; ignore all sideshow distractions. Watch your step, and the road will stretch out smooth before you. Look neither right nor left; leave evil in the dust.” So, the next time you receive a Word from the Lord concerning your life, choose to Plead the Fifth. Intentionally choose not to speak against the Word. Don’t disqualify yourself, don’t try and figure it out. Just receive and expect God’s Word to come to pass, no questions asked.