My mission is to provide you with inspiration and encouragement to live everyday to it's fullest. I do this by sharing the simple things in life such as recipes to the most difficult of things such a life. We all know life is a struggle and many days a balancing act, but I am here to inspire you to do it well. Everything I write about is designed to inspire as well as encourage you to be a "better" you that you can be. Everything I share is raw and real. I do not cover up or sugar coat what I write about. This would benefit no one. My goal is for you to walk away feeling uplifted and encouraged after leaving my page. Lastly, I am here to remind you that you are… enough and beautiful… just the way you are.
My friend, Today’s Encouragement will be a simple reminder that no matter what you are going through, whether everything is going well, or whether everything is going badly, there is a reason for all of it.
God reminds us in Ecclesiastes,
“To everything there is a season, a time for every purpose under Heaven.”
Ecclesiastes 3:1 (NKJV)
If you are going through a difficult time remember this and be encouraged that with every second and every hour God is growing you and molding you for a better plan and purpose.
He never allows us to go through the muddy waters of life without allowing us to use those difficulties later and somewhere else.
I have experienced some great difficulties in my life and as I was going through them, my greatest consolidation was that there was a purpose for it. Whether the purpose was to help me conquer a trial later or if it was to help encourage someone else, I knew in my heart there was a reason for everything I was going through.
It didn’t come easily though, because there were many days I remember saying, “Lord, this is hard, this is really hard, but if you can use this hardship later to make someone else’s life a bit easier, then I will be okay and I can do this, but only with Your strength.”
I needed to know there was a reason and a purpose for the difficult season in my life and God was always there to reassure me there was.
My friend, if this is you today and you are struggling in a difficult relationship, you are struggling financially, or you are struggling with a sick family member, a close friend or even a spouse. It doesn’t matter if it is all of these or none of these. What matters if you are having a difficult time is to remember these simple, but powerful words;
“There is none like You, Lord.”
Stand tall today, hold your head just a little bit higher, and know your God knows you, sees you, and above all else, loves you.
Do not be discouraged if you are going through something and you keep praying over it, and God keeps saying, “No, not now”.
My friend, God is hearing your prayer and is wiping your tears, but no matter how discouraged you are, He will not answer your prayer until His timing is perfect.
When His timing is “perfect”, you will only be able to say, “Wow”.
Wait for His timing. Wait for your, “Wow” and know you won’t regret it.
But until then, keep praying as He hears your prayer.
He has not abandoned you. He wants you to lean on Him. He wants to know you need Him.
Trust God and His timing, even if it doesn’t make sense. Trust His timing even when the pressure of others is intense. They do not know what He is doing, just as you don’t, but don’t give into their pressure.
If God is not directing you, then continue to wait.
My friend, you’ve got this no matter how difficult your trial is.
There will be a reward for your wait. It may come in an hour, but it may take six years or more, but keep trusting in God and know He will meet your need, no matter what it is.
Does this sound like what you experience? Do not feel alone because your feelings are real.
This is what reality looks like and knowing this allows us to know when life gets messy it is okay because others know this experience as well.
In this day of “perfect ” social media, it is easy to loose track of what reality looks like because it gets lost in the rose colored lenses of our cameras and fancy captions we put with the images.
Anything can look good when you add fancy filters to your pictures and inauthentic captions to make them look and sound beautiful, but the “real” gets lost in the artificial .
When we look through Facebook and Instagram we can easily fall into a place where we see those images and lives as easy and “perfect” when in reality they are not. They are not because they are not “real”.
We live in the “real” and not in the “perfect”. Cling to your real and find peace in the difficult days while rejoicing during the good ones because they are there to rejuvenate and refresh you while preparing you for the difficult days when they arrive.
The reality is…
Life is real.
Life is messy.
Life is happy.
Life is difficult.
Life is exhilarating.
Life is devastating.
Life is joyous.
Life is exhausting.
Lastly, remember life is what you make of it. There are many days that are joyous while there are many that discouraging, but God gives us the strength to get through them all.
Has your week been a difficult one? Is your day starting out less than desirable?
My friend, know you are not alone. The struggle is real, as sadly as that may sound. There are many days that are not easy and just make you question yourself or decisions you have made, but I am here today to encourage you to know there are brighter days ahead.
Keep you head held high and know if you focus on what is in front of you and not on where you have come from, then you will be encouraged to know there is still hope for a brighter tomorrow.
Remember today, you can get through everything you are struggling with because you are… strong enough, brave enough, bold enough, and beautiful (or handsome) enough.
I am sharing warm words of encouragement today to inspire you as we get closer to Christmas and we feel the stress of trying to finish our shopping and begin wrapping the gifts we have bought, to instead of tackling what is left with angst and anxiety, let us instead, pray over the person whom we are buying or wrapping for.
If you do this, God will not only bless the person who you are praying for, but He will bless you with a peace that is louder than your anxiety and a comfort that will be stronger than any pressure you are feeling.
“Let us wrap each gift we give with kind, loving thoughts about all those who have helped to make the gift possible and the person who will receive the gift.” Barbara Benson
My friend, I know many of us are feeling the pressure of trying to finish everything in time for Christmas. It is my prayer for you, who has taken the time to read this today, that you will be empowered with a peace that passes all understanding and that you will not be robbed of the joy of the season as exhaustion sets in.
We can and will do this! We will be done and ready for Christmas!
This Christmas Season has been anything but a typical one for me, but it is one I will cherish more than any gift I could have ever received.
I wrote a couple of weeks ago about how I worked extremely hard to decorate my house for the holidays so by the time we got into the busy part of the holiday, I would have it done and would not have to wonder where I would find the time to decorate.
What I did not know or could not have foreseen was how different this season would look to me. The hustle and bustle of the holiday went on hold for several reasons, one of which included everyone in my family being sick. Another reason was when I decided to shift my focus to how I could help my daughter catch up as well as finish all her college classes, from where she struggled earlier in the semester with being sick and being in massive pain due to her chronic migraines.
I remember when I decided to put Christmas on hold to help my daughter, I asked God to bless me later with the time I needed to catch up and to take the stress away for being behind and He did.
Here are several ”specific” prayer requests I had which God answered directly in just this holiday season. I am sharing them today because I too struggle, like others, to see God at work and to answer my prayers, but I want to encourage you that He does.
My Friend, God is truly answering our prayers whether we see them physically or not. I am going to share several of my answered prayer requests that have occurred over this Holiday Season to provide you with an encouragement to see God is at work.
I asked Him specifically to multiply the hours in a day so my daughter would have longer to work on her classes. He multiplied the hours just as I asked for, and because of this, my daughter finished all her classes on time.
I asked from Him to remove all the stress of the holiday season away from me this year, and He did.
I asked Him to place it upon my mom’s heart to call me because I missed her, but without a voice, I could not call her, and He did.
I asked Him to show me physically, that my mom still truly loves me and is proud of me, despite my letting her down for circumstances out of my control, and He did.
My Friend, I am writing about these specific answers to my prayers to encourage you to know God is listening to the desires of our hearts. We do not always see the answers to our prayers, but it does not mean He is not answering them.
I am writing about this experience to show you,
“Our greatest and most cherished gifts do not come wrapped in boxes while topped with a gorgeous big red bow. I am writing to encourage you the best presents come from within our own heart.
Cited by, HomeLife&Encouragement
What has touched you this season? Who has done something that left you in awe and touched beyond measure? What gift have you received that you will cherish in your heart for a life time? Feel free to share your experience in the comments below.
The experience I received this year came when my mom called me yesterday. She does not call often, but yesterday she richly blessed my day with not only calling me, but also by telling me with the most loving words, that she still loves me and not just loves me, but truly loves me. I have not heard these gentle, loving, and meaningful words in years. Yes, I get the I love you when you hang up the phone, but these words were different. These words were said with gentle love, which I have not heard in a long time.
The second gift she gave me was when she told me she put up a little Christmas tree this year. This was powerful to me because she has not done this for ten or more years. When we lost my dad, it was like part of my mom’s heart died with him.
I have struggled for years with my mom battling holiday depression that would begin as early as November 11 and last through New Years, every year. As a result, the strain this would cause for me every Christmas season was pretty intense. I found over the past couple of years that in order for me to protect my broken heart, I had to withdraw from her for most of the season because it was just so difficult to talk to her.
This year thankfully is shaping up to be different. She said with a joy in her voice that she was happy for the first time in years to put up her Christmas tree and a few decorations as well as lights. This was the best present she could have ever given herself let alone given to me. It is my prayer her heart continues to heal because to hear this joy in her voice is the best as well as a priceless gift she could give to me as well as herself.
My Friend, if you are struggling this season with thoughts of discouragement and you are just in need of seeing God answer your prayers like He did for me, consider doing this, just talk to Him.
So many times people fall into the trap of having to be formal and pray formally with God, but I do not feel this way. I talk to God like He was sitting here with me, in person, right now. I figure He knows me better than I know myself because He created me, so when I spill my heart out to Him, this does not take Him by surprise.
Tell Him what you need tonight. He is listening. Then sit back and “trust” He is working it all out for you. Do not expect to see a physical prayer answered unless you asked specifically, because this is when we walk away disappointed. Instead of watching for the miracle or prayer to be answered, walk away from it, but if and when you see it, then rejoice with God knowing He is allowing you to see the physical request being met just like He did for me.
My prayer seasons have been pretty dry. We struggle a lot. I pray a lot, but honestly, I struggle to see the effects of my prayers which is why I am writing about this journey today.
This is my gentle reminder this Christmas Season, God is still here. He is still walking with us, talking to us, helping us, and holding our hand along every difficult step we take. Take some time to talk to Him and allow Him the opportunity to bless you this Holiday Season, just as He did for me.