Tag Archive | Belief

Yep, He Had My Back the Whole Way!

jesus holding the worldBoy has it been a year!  I have been through the ringer and this ol’ single mom is T-I-R-E-D!  But I’m also very grateful that I’m not alone. Here are just some of the things I can recall for 2014:

1) Started the New Year with frozen pipes/issues – meant lugging water in for a couple of weeks
2) Furnace stopped working – paid $$ I didn’t have for someone to come out and ‘fix it’ — only to find that they were full of you-know-what.  Then had to pay more for someone else to come out and do it right
3) Numerous times I had car issues/repairs
4) I got laid-off unexpectedly in March – lost a really good paying job that also included health care benefits paid at 100% for my whole family
5) Received a letter from IRS that I didn’t pay in enough some 3 years prior (long story)
6) Finally landed a job – at $11,000/yr less than my prior job + I had to start paying $400+ for health insurance
7) Was pretty miserable at that job – we were not a good fit for each other – but made some really awesome new friends too
8)  About the time I landed the new job – I also had to start paying $460/mo for childcare for the summer
9)  Car kept breaking down….so I finally gave in and signed on the dotted line for another one
10)  My daughter/best friend moved south out of town
11)  Was able to go see my daughter and her hubby for a few days during the July 4th holiday!
12) Received a letter from Attorney General that they ‘over-paid’ me for child support 2+ years prior and started taking half of my child support….which means I get a whopping $240/mo now
13)  Started getting down in the dumps about everything hitting constantly with no break…..started whining to God
14)  Got an unexpected call from my mentor and friend offering me a job (a little more money than my previous – for now, but promised more to come)
15)  Bills have been backing up and stacking up with all that has gone on so far
16)  Payroll company ‘forgets’ to enter my enrollment for health insurance…so they have to withdraw double payment out of my check = $500+
17)  Had to request them to defer a car payment when starting new job – in order to get them to coordinate with paydays = they had to deduct a double-payment out of the SAME paycheck that #15 occurs!
18)  Somewhere along the way – I reconnected with my first love, my high school sweetheart via FB
19)  Turned the big 5-0
20)  Thanksgiving — we were not able to work out schedules so that we could spend it with daughter and her hubby
21)  Thanksgiving — my high school sweetheart accepted and invitation to stop by and see me – he will have dinner with me, my son and my dad
22)  Christmas — we were unable to work out plans for spending this holiday with daughter/her hubby.  He was promoted – and can’t take off now and we can’t go that way
23)  Christmas — worked it out so we will go see daughter/hubby week after
There are many, many more ups and downs, but these are the things that come to mind right now.  It’s a lot.  Especially for a single-parent who is NOT getting any sort of assistance.  But it also means that someone had to have my back.  And He did!  God has seen me through as promised!  He never said it would be easy…but rather that He would be there.
However, I’ve also learned that He actually takes the burdens completely from me when I ask Him to – when I give it to Him.  It has been a hard lesson for me to learn – but I believe I’ve got it now.  I don’t even stress anymore about things….when something difficult comes my way – I say ‘here You go, God…it’s Yours’ — and He takes it!
May you all be blessed and enjoy your family and friends during the holidays.  And here’s to a beautiful, bless-filled 2015 coming around the corner!

Journey Down Memory Lane & Back

Mixed emotions.  That is what I have been experiencing lately.  Like a roller-coaster, up on minute, down the next.  Funny how going down memory lane can bring back emotions as if you were back in that time.  It kind of wears you out to be up one moment and then deeply saddened in the very next one.

My daughter and her husband were in town for the weekend.  The trip was quick and of course it went by way too quickly!  We have always been close – and this move has been rough on both of us.  No more dropping in on each other or calling and saying “let’s do lunch” anymore.  So we go from being anxious for days building up to their arrival – to great joy when they get here – and then a crash when they have to leave again.  It’s like mourning all over again.  Each time.
One thing for sure – we definitely appreciate our time together.  We value family and never take each other for granted.  My family has always been close and will always have each others’ back no matter what happens.  I never have understood how people can get ticked off at another family member and then simply cut off all ties.  That’s so sad!
Going down memory lane has been a bit more difficult on me lately.  We all take a stroll into our past from time to time.  Maybe it’s a song that you used to listen to when you were younger.  Or you see a book you read.  And maybe you run into an old classmate.  Whatever it is – it slams you right back into that time period for a few moments.
I find that Facebook has brought about a lot of those little strolls.  Whenever I re-connect with someone from my past.  The older I get – the more I value and appreciate those connections.  There are a few connections that surprise me.  They are the ones that humble me for various reasons.
Recently I reconnected with my first love.  I thought of him a lot through the years and often wondered whatever happened to him.  I honestly wasn’t sure that he was even alive as he was a mess the last time I ran into him.  As a matter of fact, after talking with him that night so long ago – I remember telling my friend I didn’t think he would live long.  So it has been a real joy to see that he did make it – and that his life is good.  My emotions run high with this experience though.
I guess it’s the Fibro Fog again – but for the life of me I cannot recall the specifics of why I broke up with him – other than being young and dumb.  He tells me that I was the only one to break his heart.  And that makes me feel really awful.  Yes, we were young and it’s all part of life….but that is no real excuse.  I regret that I caused him pain.  I regret that I didn’t know what I was doing back then.  And in some ways I regret letting him go.
It seems we both have lived through a lot.  Gone through tough times and survived.  For that I am grateful.  I really enjoy chatting with him and getting to know him all over again.  However, with that brings a lot of mixed feelings.   I find myself being like a school girl anxiously awaiting to hear from him again.  And at the same time – we live totally different lives in different cities.  Too much time has passed and we are different people now.  We can’t go back.  So then I feel like an idiot, ya know?
I’m sure it is the reminiscing about what used to be.  And what could have been.  And being single again.  But as mentioned in past blog posts – I have no intentions of getting into another relationship other than simple friendship.  So what the heck is up with my crazy emotions?!
At any rate – I am thankful for the people God has placed in my life.  And for the special times/connections that I have.  I am thankful that God has always had my back…..after all we are family.
Speaking of God having my back…I have been experiencing much favor of late.  I believe the reason is not that I’m ‘doing’ the right thing now – as that would be relying on my works rather than His grace.  But rather that I am believing that He has already provided everything I need and so much more.  I only have to learn to receive His gifts!
So thank You, Father for always being there for me and mine!

Still On My Journey…Learning More…..Sometimes With My Heels Dug In…..

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I can’t believe I haven’t posted anything since May – and here it is October! A lot has been going on for sure. Some of it has been tough, but I lean heavily on God and He always sees me through!

As mentioned in this previous post, my daughter and son-in-law moved down south.  They are doing well though we are all missing each other like crazy.  My daughter had some serious home-sickness going on for a bit – but I think she is doing better now.

They both came back up a few weeks ago for a visit.  While here, many of their friends came out to the house for a little party.  It sure was fun seeing everyone together again!  And most recently they were here for the wedding of ‘my other daughter’ – as you may have read on previous posts….she is my daughter’s best friend.  They call each other ‘sister’ and I’m ‘Mom’ to her.

I also mentioned that the new job I got after being laid-off was not very enjoyable.  I didn’t want to complain about the job I had after losing the other one…but I was miserable.  I didn’t want to come across as being ungrateful. It was during this time though, that I started learning that I was not leaning on God as much as I thought.

I was so ‘worried’ about being laid-off that I grabbed the first job that came along rather than praying about it and relying on God to open doors for me.  Again, which has been typical in my life, I was trying to be in control and manipulate my situation.

If you read this earlier post of mine, then you will understand my thought process here.  Of course it wasn’t until after I started the new job and began to reflect on my situation that I came to realize that I was still struggling with ‘unbelief’. Though I had faith that God would provide, my unbelief came about in thinking that I needed to jump on that job because there might not be another offer rather than waiting on Him.  So I spent almost 6 months in a job that I was unhappy with and that was not a good fit – for me or the employer.

During this time, I kept studying and learning about God’s grace and His desire to provide for us, His children.  Most recently it dawned on me….

Just as an earthly parent, God does not want His children to suffer, be ill, in pain or live in poverty.  He wants only the best for us.  I have always said I believed that….but I think deep down I always felt like I wasn’t living up to whatever it was in my mind that I thought I should be or be doing for Him.  I felt that because I was ‘failing’ or falling short of what I thought He wanted….then why would He shower me with abundance?  If I couldn’t take care of the little, why would He give me more?

Don’t get me wrong – I’m not talking about doing ‘works’ in order to get to heaven.  But just as with my own children….they may do things that are not what I would choose for them…and they may even disappoint me from time to time.  But would I want them to suffer, do without, hurt?  No way!  So why would I assume God would be any different?

I heard someone say that maybe we shouldn’t be asking God for ‘just enough’ – meaning, why do we ask Him for things like giving us just enough to live comfortably, or feel better, or pay our bills?  We are children of God.  We were made righteous by Christ.  So we should claim it!  We have power through Christ!

So I recently sat down and had a lengthy conversation with my Father.  And I laid it all at the feet of my Savior. It finally made sense to me! I gave thanks.  I cried. And rejoiced.  And cried some more.  But afterwards I felt so much lighter and I could definitely feel a difference.  The burdens were gone.

Very shortly after that…things started happening for me:

First of all, I hurt my back carrying something at work that was WAY to heavy.  And I was laying in bed on the 3rd night of the worst pain I have ever been in.  But through the misery – I kept repeating thanks over and over for the healing.  And sure enough, the pain went away without seeking medical care.

Every time I found my mind wanting to head down in the dumps or start with the negative thoughts – I would correct myself and say thanks to my Father.  I gave thanks for my healing (we are healed by his stripes….) and thanks for His provision. Let me tell you….it was not – and still isn’t – a natural or automatic thing for me.  I am so used to thinking ‘here we go again’ or something negative…and then gearing up to deal with it.  So, I have had to repeat many, many times that I do not have to carry the burden….God’s got this!

Next, I got a call from someone that I have always considered a mentor of mine.  I had worked with him in the past and though we parted ways years ago, I would still do some ‘virtual assistant’ jobs for him from time to time.  I also know his boss – the owner of the company in which he works now – from that same time period in our past.  He asked me to stop in to help them with some personnel issues.  I agreed.

When I got there, both of them were there telling me about how some things had changed within the company – and they wanted to offer me a job!!!  You have to understand – I have wanted to work for them for years!  And here it was, out of the clear blue, being offered!  Needless to say, I accepted the job.

Within the first week – I was given a raise…to cover the healthcare premiums – so that it wouldn’t cut into my take home pay. Can you believe that!?  I was also assured that I would be getting my pay bumped up very soon.

Then came the realization that I was most likely going to lose my insurance on my home – due to ‘forgetting’ (Fibro Fog) to pay it…and my first check was coming in exactly one week later than the cut-off date.  Again I found myself starting to get stressed.  But I reminded myself that God’s got this….and I was just along for the ride.

Sure enough – no quicker had those thoughts crossed my mind when my boss asked me how I was with the gap between my last job’s payday and this one.  I told him I was figuring it out.  He told me to give him a figure and he would advance it to me.  I did.  He did.  When I asked about re-paying it…..I was told not to worry about it right now.  So, house insurance was paid – literally within 4 hours of it being cancelled!

For many – this may sound like small potatoes….but for me – this is huge!  For the first time in my life, I feel that things are going to be good for me!  I no longer feel like I screwed up and therefore it is what it is!  Of course there will still be things to come up and I will probably have to remind myself another few hundred times to let things go….but I’m confident that it will become easier as I’m growing and learning more!

Next on my list is my health – again, I’ve spoken with God about this and I am confident that my body is repairing itself and I will no longer suffer.  For now, I find that when I’m getting caught up in the ‘unbelief’ – my Fibro starts acting up.  Once I claim healing and refuse to worry about the situation the symptoms recede.  I believe that for now this is my little reminder to help get me back on track.  But I also fully believe that I am healed and that my healthy body will manifest once I learn to accept the gift given to me.

And finally…..relationships.  I’m not sure where I’m going here yet.  But I’m trusting God to lead me.  At the moment, with all of the pain and mistrust I’ve experienced in this area….I do not want an intimate relationship with another man…ever!  But at the same time, I find myself lonely and wishing for companionship.  However, I will wait on my Father and see what He has in mind for me.  Maybe it’s more than I can ever dream of…..or maybe I’m not supposed to have another man in my life….either way, I’m good with that.

F.R.O.G. = Fully Relying On God…..that’s the fun part….once you learn to relax and go with it!

Belief vs Unbelief

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Heard another message that really hit home for me this morning….like a ton of bricks….my head still hurts (Ha!).

The speaker was teaching about how Christians can be saved, but still have unbelief.  Not that we don’t believe in God and that Christ died for us – but rather how we often focus on our issues or problems rather than the promises of God.

The speaker said that unbelief comes to be when we do not consider (meditate on or bear in mind) the promises of God.  Instead we focus (or consider) on the problem/issue more – and all of this comes to us in a variety of ways:

  •  Disbelief – when we are given incorrect teaching of God’s word

o   Can be countered by our reading and studying His word for ourselves

  • Natural Unbelief – is relying on what we physically see and hear – what we naturally experience

o   Again countered by what we know of God’s word and not on our own emotions/senses

  • Hardened Heart – a result of what you will not consider/accept

o   Countered by considering/meditating on the promise rather than the issue – instead of thinking that something is or is not going to happen (based upon your knowledge or experience about the issue) – you simply believe that although you don’t know how, you know for sure that God will take care of it and it will happen in a way far beyond your imagination

 Our own unbelief often stands in the way of the promise being fulfilled. And we’ve all read and heard that before.  But I guess I never thought of it past believing in God and that Christ died for me.  I never thought of it in terms of my thinking or views having an impact on the results.  I mean – yes, I’ve said to myself or others ‘God will take care of us’ – or something along those lines.  But what was really rolling around deep inside my mind at that time?

Funny thing is though, as I mentioned in yesterday’s post, I have been learning a lot lately.  About myself.  About God. About my life and this journey I’m on.  And I had already come to realize that I need to re-direct my thought process as I’m working to trust and have more faith in God.  And this message today simply reinforced what I have been processing in my own mind lately.

For example, I have been working through some financial issues of late – and I knew I was in for some very rough times.  It was going to be bad.  On paper, I simply was not going to make it, folks.  But then I corrected myself and thought ‘No, I am going to trust God.  He is going to see me through this.  I am going to rely fully on Him and stop worrying about what I cannot change.’

I have to tell you – I was nauseous with worry about what I was going to do – and several times throughout the day I would speak with God about it.  And I would remind myself to stop worrying, trust God – stop thinking about it, trust God…..you get the picture.  Over and over I would go through that process.  It took a couple of days – but the anxiety subsided.  It took time, I believe because if I wasn’t careful, I would find myself getting anxious and contemplating the horrible things I just knew was going to happen ‘IF God decided not to help me out of my predicament’.  I also praised Him and thanked Him for taking care of me and my son.  Each time I caught my mind wandering back to the dark side – I would praise Him and thank Him and claim His promises to me.  And of course, He was faithful and He worked it all out for me!  I just had to focus my thoughts on my heavenly Father and stop focusing on the things of this world.  Why oh why do we make things so difficult on ourselves?

Ultimately, this has taught me to think a little deeper and do some serious soul-searching about my ‘self-talk’.  I am the expert in telling myself that something is not as good as it should be or why would God do this when I did that, etc.  Few people know that I have a Commercial Art & Advertising education on my resume – the reason?  I was so critical of my own work it was not rewarding to do the work.  Therefore, I never pursued that field as a career.

So, on this piece of my journey I am striving to redirect my thinking.  To stop and tell myself, ‘No – I am not going to think that way.  Instead, I’m going to believe and trust that God is going to do _____.’  I am going to keep reminding myself daily that I am loved.  I am worthwhile.  God is waiting for me to get out of my own way – so He can do miraculous things!

Wishing you a blessed day! Take care