Thursday, September 7, 2017

Twenty-One. An Official Adult.


    September 3rd, I turned 21! Ah! How crazy time flies. I am super excited to do a blog entry. Each month, I like to look back on journal entries and read my devotional notes and see God's working hand in my life. For this past month of August, I've decided to count the blessings along with it. Asking myself, where in my notes can I read and say, "thank you Lord, for guiding me." One of my favorite quotes is this, "It's not joy that makes us grateful, it's gratitude that makes us joyful." I love the truth behind this; A heart of gratitude and praise for all the Lord has done and does for us, I am finding more and more brings such joy and contentment in this life, even through hard situations that we may not understand. So as a way to reflect and a place for me to look back on, I am going to share a few bits and pieces of my daily devotional entries here with you. Along with a few pictures from my adventurous birthday outing with my mom, sister, and cousin.

Photo Credits to my beautiful cousin, Aiden and sweet sister, Chloe :)

 Before I list a few entries, I want to say that my studies are never in one spot it seems. No matter how many times I try to start a reading plan through the bible, I always end up jumping around to different scriptures or reading about the life of an individual in the bible. Not to say there is a right or wrong way, because I need to finish my reading plan! Haha! However, I think it is important to follow the leading of the Lord's Spirit. That is why praying before reading your bible is very helpful. I like to think of it this way, I'm asking God for help with something in my life, and in my hand's is His spoken answers. The bible is His love letter to us and truly a "How To Manual" for a Christian's life.


8/11/17
Don't lose sight of the big picture:
I AM HERE TO GLORIFY GOD.
"If any man speak, let him speak as the oracles of God; if any man minister, let him do it as of the ability which God giveth: that God in all things may be glorified through Jesus Christ, to whom be praise and dominion for ever and ever. Amen." -1 Peter 4:11

8/13/17
"The sword of the Lord and Gideon!" -Judges 7
"My thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are my ways your ways."-Isaiah 55:8
The bible constantly shows us circumstances that seem impossible to fix in man's eyes but the Lord always delivers in a "impossible in man's eyes" way! Giving Him all the more glory and honor that He desires!

8/18/17
Give to the needy and poor, don't become lazy and idle with the gifts and knowledge of grace the Lord has given you;
"Behold, this was the inequity of thy sister Sodom: pride, fullness of bread, and abundance of idleness was in her and in her daughters, neither did she strengthen the hand of the needy and poor."
-Ezekiel 16:49 

8/20/17
"Memory fails, but Christ doesn't."
"And there sins and inequities will I remember no more."- Hebrews 10:17

8/21/17
LOVE MUST DO SOMETHING. 
Love, if we keep it active on purpose as we do things for others, we can keep from being selfish, idle, and unfruitful.
 "Hereby perceive we the love of God, because he laid down his life for us: and we ought to lay down our lives for the brethren. But whoso hath this world's good, and seeth his brother have need, and shutteth up his bowels of compassion from him, how dwelleth the love of God in him?
 My little children, let us not love in word, neither in tongue; but in deed and in truth."
-1 John 3:16-18

8/26/17
"God calls us to be faithful not successful."
You will never regret any time spent on your relationship with the Lord, and His ministry. 
"Most men will proclaim every one his own goodness: but a faithful man who can find?"
-Proverbs 20:6

8/27/17
Look for the blessings in life and think on eternity. Be the cheerful source of medicine for someone else. Talk of your hope in Christ.

"A merry heart doeth good like a medicine: but a broken spirit drieth the bones." -Proverbs 17:22
"Pleasant words are as sweet as an honeycomb, sweet to the soul, and health to the bones." -Proverbs 16:24



My 21st birthday was such a fun celebration, with NO alcohol involved. ;)
We decided to take a trip to one of my favorite parks in Columbus, MS. I first discovered this park in 2013, while my family and I were in transition of moving from Florida to Alabama. My dad was working a job in Alabama and renting a home in Columbus, MS (it was only about a 30 minute drive apart) while the rest of the family was packing and look for a home in Alabama. During the time of looking for houses my mom, Chloe, Abel, and I stayed a month with dad in Columbus. This time of my life was very exciting and "unknowing" I guess you could say. However, this being my fourth move, I've learned to just buckle up and enjoy the ride! God has always surprised us with what we never thought could be and I love that! It's the being patient part that usually gets us and still does sometimes. ;)
















Aiden and Chloe
Love these girls! <3






The Crew!



Coffee House On 5th! 
 

Now some brunch @ Cracker Barrel of course! 
 
I'm in heaven. Oh how I love you, candles.

   










Our brunch friend.
 My excitement for mommy taking me to cracker barrel! :D


My brunch:
  BACON. enough said.



Since my birthday fell on a Sunday this year, we decided to have this adventurous outing the day before. Truly was a birthday weekend of joyful blessings and I am thanking God for it. 
Below, is a picture of the sunset at my church on my actual birthday. Since turning 18, I've decided to take a picture of the sunset every year on my birthday. Just a weird tradition of my own. ;) I almost missed this one! 

"Set your affection on things above, not on things on the earth."
 -Colossians 3:2
Hope you enjoyed reading!
May God bless you and guide you. <3


Wednesday, March 15, 2017

Hallelujah: God Be Praised




“ I will run, I will run this race,
And I will do it all for love,
Your love compels me forward,
Your love controls my heart,
And I just cannot get away.

So I will fight this good fight of faith,
And I will do it all for love.
You are my great reward,
You're so worth fighting for
And I can't wait to see Your face."


 I recently stumbled across this sweet song and it really stirred my thoughts. I began to reflected on my life and how many times I have tired to run this race alone. Many times, when I become overwhelmingly busy with the task of life, I set aside precious time with my Heavenly Father, in order to complete them. In just a short amount of time, it becomes so easy to lose my sight on the reason I am here. Yes, it is important to take care of the task we have set before us in this life, we read in Gen. 12:5 that God put Adam in the garden of Eden "to dress it and keep it". We also read in Pro. 31:27 that the virtuous woman, "looketh well to the ways of her household and eateth not the bread of idleness", but who gives us the ability to complete these task? God. I know personally when I forgot where my strength comes from, I than began seeking out strength in myself, thinking ‘I can handle this!” and allowing my emotions and flesh to lead me. This weak source only leads me to selfish desires and causes me to forget the reason I am here; to glorify, honor, and praise God. How? Through selfless love and always looking to serve others and put their needs before my own. I need to constantly be reminding my self that everything in this world is TEMPORAL. 


 What really matters? Why am I here? To keep God’s commandments until He comes back or I meet Him in heaven. Daily, I have to pick up my cross and follow Him, Secondly, it is not about me. The root of sin is pride and selfishness, it’s not what can I get out off this life but what can I give in this life to please my heavenly Father and show gratitude for what His precious Son, our Savior, Jesus Christ, died for. Each day in this life, I should wake up remembering, He died for me. 

  I love to think on Micah 6:8..”what doeth the Lord require of thee, but to do justly, and to love mercy, and to walk humbly with thy God?” So when I begin to think again, “I can do this!”, that’s when I need to stop, pick up God’s living Word and let His spirit lead me back to the path of righteousness.


  

 Below is a short list of what I wrote in my journal a couple of weeks ago to keep me from straying. Especially during this time of my life in college, when it’s so easy to let my flesh take over me. May it be a humbling reminder for me and I pray, an encouragement to others.


1. Set your mind on eternity. The moment I take my eyes off this, I instantly become discontent. 


"If ye then be risen in Christ, seek those things which are above, where Christ sitteth on the right had of God. Set your affections on things above not on things of the earth." - Colossians 3:1-2



 "While we look not at the things which are seen, but at the things which are not seen: for the things which are seen are temporal; but the things which are not seen are eternal." - 2 Corinthians 4:18


2. Serve for God, not man or self. everything I do here on earth should be for God and His glory.


"For do I now persuade men, or God? or do I seek to please men? for if I yet pleased men, I should not be the servant of Christ." 

- Galatians 1:10


 "Not with eye service, as men pleasers; but as the servants of Christ, doing the will of God from the heart; With good will doing service, as to the Lord, and not to men." 

- Ephesians 6:6-7


3. Serve others with gladness. Be excited when the Lord gives you opportunities to show your love for Him, by serving others. Be looking for ways to serve and follow in Christ foots steps, as the name Christian states; Christ-like.


"Let nothing be done through strife or vainglory; but in lowliness of mind let each esteem other better than themselves. Look not every man on his own things, but every man also on the things of others." - Philippians 2:3-4


"Serve the Lord with gladness: come before his presence with singing." - Psalm 100:2


4. Take advantage of every minute, “redeeming the time, for the days are evil”. Serve God every minute of the day and don’t take your eyes off Jesus. Reminding yourself, this world is temporal and everything in it will vanish. Don’t set your heart on possessions, but on Words, God’s Words, in His love letter to us, because we truly will live happily ever after with it.  - Ephesians 5


5. Don’t over-think but over-pray. Which I don’t think we can ever over-pray. Remember, “..the prayer of the upright is His delight.” Pro. 15:8. If you fall, confess your sin to God and ask Him to guide you back to His Truths and Way. I know He will, if you're seeking to walk humbly with Him. 


"Brethren, I count not myself to have apprehended: but this one thing I do, forgetting those things which are behind, and reaching forth unto those things which are before, I press toward the mark for the prize of the high calling of God in Christ Jesus." 

- Philippians 3:13-14


 "Be careful for nothing; but in every thing by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known unto God. And the peace of God, which passeth all understanding, shall keep your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus." 

- Philippians 4:6-7


6. Remember, God’s Word is ALIVE. As you read it with humility, God’s spirit will change your desires to His desires, so read it daily and constantly, especially when Satan whispers lies to you and your flesh takes lead. 


"In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God." - John 1:1


"For the word of God is quick, and powerful, and sharper than any two-edged sword, piercing even to the dividing asunder of soul and spirit, and of the joints and marrow, and is a discerner of the thoughts and intents of the heart." -Hebrews 4:12