Five Minute Friday: Once

Do you struggle with wanting to belong, people-pleasing, co-dependency issues, or need for validation?

If so, I understand. That was me ONCE, and even now I still find that I have to be careful. This often looks like a battle between a simple yes or no.

What do I mean?

Our flesh often times says “yes” to things our spirit is saying “no” to. We want to belong so we go along with things that we know are either not right or not conducive to our overall well-being. We want to please someone so we’re not alone, so we’re accepted and we say “yes” to some obligation even though our spirit is literally screaming “NO”. (time) We may say “yes” in the sense that we tolerate certain behavior because we believe we’d lose out if we let go (no). And then sometimes we say “yes” by acting a certain way to gain attention because we want to be seen instead of accepting a no or rejection as a form of redirection, protection, and/or blessing in disguise.

We’ve all experienced one or all of these at some point in our lives, and in some ways still are… So what have I done to break free of these irrational beliefs where I thought ‘If I… then she/he will…’ or ‘If I… then this will or will not…’?

One MAJOR thing that’s helped me is SELF-REFLECTION. Being unapologetically honest with myself and God about why I think and do some of the things I do. It’s not pretty. It doesn’t feel good. You may even feel a bit naïve and gullible, but when you get tired of compromising or giving your “pearls to swine” that wake-up call for a “come-to-Jesus-talk” begins to weigh heavy on your heart.

Don’t feel bad… Feel better by doing better… Self-reflection allows you to question your current beliefs which foster certain thoughts and eventually certain behaviors. And if we’re honest, many of us have been living and existing on a faulty belief system… BUT it doesn’t have to remain as such.

I’d love to hear ONE thing that’s helped you overcome similar issues mentioned above.

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7 Days Away…

In spite of God’s word that his offspring would be as many as the stars (Genesis 15:5), Abraham agreed with his wife to sleep with her slave, Hagar (Genesis 16)… Twice he lied about his relation to Sarah, which affected other households (Genesis 12:10-20 and Genesis 20)… EVEN STILL God was true to his promise with the birth of Isaac (Genesis 21).

Five Minute Friday: Sunrise

Sunrise… hmmm… a smile from God… I don’t know that I’ve actually seen the sun rise, but I can remember one moment on a women’s retreat at the Red Apple Inn in Heber Springs, Arkansas where I fell in love with nature.

It was early and cool out as I sat outside just taking in the beauty of the moment. It was slightly foggy still and I remember seeing a squirrel scurrying about from one spot to another. I remember feeling a sense of peace and in awe of God’s creation.

I imagine seeing a sunrise would be just the same, but more captivating…. (time)...

This picture is a perfect illustration of what I believe I’d feel… God’s love. Him smiling down on me. Refreshed! I really don’t have the words to describe it, but it would indeed be the most heartwarming feeling in the world.

Imagine God’s love rushing over you like a flood… covering you… overpowering you, but in a good way… how awesome is that!

How do you see God in a sunrise? I’d love to see what you see!

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Five Minute Friday: Design

I’m reminded of Psalm 139:14 that says, “I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made; your works are wonderful, I know that full well.” (NIV). I also love the NLT version, “Thank you for making me so wonderfully complex! Your workmanship is marvelous—how well I know it.”

Somewhat of a novice graphic designer, when I saw today’s prompt word was design, this is what came to mind.

And when I consider the verse above, I’m thankful for the sovereignty of God to create and design us in so many unique ways. We are indeed fearfully and wonderfully made – I remember reading somewhere about how God took his time to intricately design each of us in such a way that we (time)… are able to complement each other’s gifts, talents, skills, and needs.

And it’s not about perfection… says the perfectionist (tendencies…lol). As seen in the image above, even every line, every wrinkle, every wave is intentional. Often times we get caught up in appearances, but also what we have or don’t have compared to someone else. But when we remember that God, the Creator of all things (lest not forget all things he made was good), God the Designer of our very being knew what we needed in ALL ways to fulfill the purpose we’ve been birthed for.

I also want to highlight from the image above… I don’t know if you see it, but I see the silhouette of a woman. Now, I imagine God, the potter, and we, as the clay. While from the outside we see lines, wrinkles, and waves… when the veil is removed, a beautiful soul emerges. My, My!!! People may only see your scars, your flaws, your mistakes, or setbacks… but you’re still here meaning God is not through with you yet. Each day we awake He’s still molding us, conforming us, transforming us and even designing us. Not all designs are permanent. They change over time. As we grow in his word, as we evolve, guess what? We change too. So, let’s remember that specifically, not all designs are permanent. The beauty of something that’s not so pretty now has yet to be revealed. But even in the stage of un-prettiness, let’s accept and love what’s still a creation of God.

I know I went different places with this one, but hopefully something tugs at your heart and your perspective, your lens!

By the way, if you’re looking for a new, inspirational book, I’d love for you to Pre-Order my latest book with my sister as co-authors and four more amazing women at TheLostCoinAP.com/kocysha.

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Five Minute Friday: Fix

Who or What are you trying to fix that’s not part of your assignment?

I get it!!! You’re inherently a ‘fixer’. It’s in your DNA. You just can’t help the desire, need, fulfillment of wanting to fix someone or something you deem broken. This is honorable, HOWEVER, if you’re a Fixer like me, you’ve been disappointed a time or two… or three… when the person/thing you attempted to fix remained broken.

What I’ve learned over time is: (1) Not EVERYTHING we find broken is meant to be fixed, and (2) Not everything we come across broken is meant for US to fix. I should also share that ‘fix’ can mean different things. Maybe you want to help heal someone’s broken heart, change (or renew) someone’s perspective about something. Maybe you want to help someone experience life in a different way, God’s way. Maybe you want to mend a broken relationship or restructure a broken system or organization.

What if the broken thing or person was not meant to be fixed, restored, healed, or changed. Hard to fathom… I know!!! What if the broken thing or person was not to be fixed, restored, healed, or changed by YOU? (time) Yes, I know… You’re such a giving, thoughtful, considerate person who simply wants to make the world a better place

A few lessons I’ve had to learn the hard way in some cases… We all have gifts, talents, skills… a purpose… a calling… and assignments to complete. And while we may often times think we’re meant to be so much to everybody, that’s just not the case. We also have a particular group of people that we’re called/assigned to. Pouring energy into something or someone NOT part of our assignment becomes draining, frustrating, and stressful among other things. It also leaves the ‘one’ you were meant to pour into empty. Sometimes things/people remain broken because there’s a greater lesson to be gained by the group or person, which means interfering at the wrong time either enables bad thinking/behavior or disrupts the purging season they’re in.

So the next time you feel the need to fix something… stop for a second… Are you the one to fix it/them? Is it time to be fixed? What’s your motive? (selfish gain or God-instructed)?

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30 Days of Giving Thanks ~ Day 30: The Armor of God

We have made it to Day 30!!! TGBTG! But the thanks doesn’t stop here, so keep giving thanks. Keep praising His name above all names.

I think this is a good way to end this #30DaysofGivingThanks with the acknowledgment of the armor of God!! Ephesians 6:13-17 breaks down what this armor looks like: (1) Belt of Truth, (2) Breastplate of righteousness, (3) Gospel of Peace (feet), (4) Shield of Faith, (5) Helmet of Salvation, and (6) Sword of the Spirit.

I am thankful that I don’t have to come up with my own weapons to fight with. That I don’t have to depend on my own devices (even though we often do). I’m thankful that I have the privilege to wake up each day and pray the armor of God over myself. I’m thankful to know I’m covered from the top of my head to the soles of my feet and all around. The two that really stick out to me is the helmet of salvation – thank you Lord for keeping me sane and in my right mind! For teaching me how to take captive thoughts of self-sabotage and defeat.  I’m also thankful for the Sword of the Spirit, his word… I don’t have to try to come up with witty responses to the enemy’s attacks. All I have to say is, “It is written…” and the right scripture ALREADY written for me.

I’m curious to know which armor piece most speaks to you?

#30DaysofGivingThanks #Day30 #ArmorofGod

30 Days of Giving Thanks ~ Day 29: His Covering & Protection

I am beyond grateful & thankful for how God has and continues to cover and protect me from seen and unseen dangers, not to mention situations I’ve gotten myself into, but didn’t have the courage to walk away from.

Have you ever experienced that before? You sign up for something or enter into some relationship (personal or professional) and realize you shouldn’t have. Sometimes we get in too deep and don’t know how to get out, but thankfully, we can call on Abba Father to rescue us (admittedly, sometimes he does, sometimes not).

Sometimes his protection and covering looks and feels like rejection, and its up to us to change our perspective on how we look at situations and acknowledge the hand of God at play.

#30DaysofGivingThanks #CoveringandProtection

30 Days of Giving Thanks ~ Day 28: Redirection

Whew! Talk about confused. Ever had a plan, but it wasn’t exactly God’s plan? Ever had your mind set on something, but it didn’t quite work out as you hoped? Signed up for something, only to have to pull back?

Often times we hear rejection is often God’s way of protecting or redirecting us. Sometimes we’re not the ones being rejected, but the one who has to do the rejection. Not an easy stance, but I can remember a Facebook post that was very much received as a warning that staying in the wrong place too long can be a dangerous thing.

I’m thankful for the redirections in my life because unfortunately I’ve not always seen people for who they really were (even beneath the whole spiritual, only do what God say persona), and sometimes we overstay our season (plant, water, nurture). So, yes, God has to redirect us when we are not quick or bold enough to leave or not aware of the danger to come, at which point we just have to trust God to lead the way.

#30DaysofGivingThanks #Day28