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Encouragement Today

Is your life one you are thankful for?

Is it everything you hoped for and are blessed to have or is it one you didn’t foresee having? 

Consider this thought today, 

“Your life is whatever you focus on.” 

Shadonna Richards

As I observe my surroundings and watch the people around me, I see a lot of pain. 

I see people struggling with relationships, work, finances, health, and children. 

I know even for myself, pain has had a huge impact in my life. 

I know the pain of strained relationships and that of finances not being enough. I am reminded daily of the pain of watching my daughter fight a battle within her own body and the destruction it is trying to have on her. 

However, today I want to encourage you that life does not have to be the focus on all you struggle with.

We have the power to change our focus. We have the power to retrain our thoughts to where we focus on more positive things instead of the negative ones. 

This strength is coming from our God, who knows every single detail of every struggle and battle we are facing. 

Ask Him today to help you retrain your thoughts and your focus.

Ask Him today to strengthen your heart and to refocus your thoughts to where, instead of focusing on all the things that are difficult, to instead, focus on the blessings.

My Friend, my challenge to you is to retrain your focus and look at areas in your life where you are happy and find contentment instead of focusing on things that bring you heartache. 

Once you fall deep in a pit of despair, it is hard to refocus on the positives thoughts, but it is my desire that you take one step at a time. Look for one thing you can be grateful for and one more and one more. 

This will enable you, over time, to begin to see and focus more on more positive things, thus giving less power to the negative ones. 

I challenge you to begin this practice today if you are struggling.

If you already focus on the positive things in your live, way to go! I am super proud of you

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Enjoy The Present

Enjoy your time today doing whatever you are doing. 

“Life is a gift and the present is the time to cherish it.” 

Shadonna Richards

Life is short and it can only come back via memories. 

Enjoy your time today doing whatever you are doing

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Today Is A New Day

Encouragement Today

Good Morning Friends!

Today is a new day.

No matter what happened yesterday, today is not yesterday, “today” is a new day.

Embrace the newness and walk into it with your head held high knowing today can be what you make it.

What failed yesterday does not have to fail today.

Change the pattern and make it yours.

Happy New Day!

#Findingyourcourage, #Keepingitreal, #Stepsforward, Believe in Yourself, Bravery, Character, Courage, Inspiration, Journey, Keeping It Real, Life

Do Not Focus On The Steps Behind You

Life Changes, The New Journey Ahead

This week has been an emotional week as we said a temporary good bye of 2 (possibly 3) years to our sweet friend, who is like family to us.

I decided to use her time away to set some long overdue goals for myself to not necessarily rediscover myself and the person I left behind years ago, but to discover who I am today.

I have spent the past six months trying to figure out what would change look like to me and to figure out who I use to be, but instead of going back, I have discovered that isn’t the journey. The journey instead, is what is ahead of me.

I have come to realize my journey ahead is not about redeeming what I lost, but is more about using my past to mold me into who God wants me to be today.

So, it was with great sadness that I said good bye while I watched our sweet friend board that plane the other night, but it is with great hope that I look forward to who I will be when she returns to American soil and home again.

#stepsforward

#findingcourage

Anxiety, Bible, Depression, Discouraged, Grief, Journey, Life, pain, Stress, Trials, Weakness, Weariness

Our Broken Spirits Are Healed

Today’s reminder is a simple one!

Are you feeling alone? Are you feeling overwhelmed?

“The Lord is near to the brokenhearted and saves the crushed in spirit.” Psalms‬ ‭34:18‬ ‭ESV‬‬

This reminder is to encourage you to know, despite how you may feel, God is with you. He is saving you from all you are feeling.

Turn your eyes towards Him and allow Him to heal your heart.

Lastly, no matter how you may be feeling, you are never alone!

Bible, Discouraged, encouragement, Holiday, Inspiration, Journey, pain

Celebrate and Reflect

Easter Greetings

Today is a day of celebration and reflection as we take the time to share this sweet Easter Day together.

Whether you are alone or you are with family or friends, take some time today to not only celebrate the bunny and the eggs, but celebrate and reflect back on the reason for the season.

My friend, Christ came to walk the Earth just like you and I. He had people who liked Him and loved Him as well as people who did not, but He stood steadfast on the truth He preached leading up to this time of His death and His resurrection.

Despite Christ, who called out,

“My God, my God, why have you forsaken me? Why are you so far from saving me, so far from my cries of anguish?” Psalm 22:1 NIV

The gentle reminder here is His Father never left Him, no matter how much pain He was in or how lonely He felt at the dark moment.

My Friend, God knew everything going on during that horrible day. None of this was a surprise to Him, because there was a mighty plan and a purpose for His Son to suffer that unbearable pain and death.

God had to watch His Son die an excruciating death in order to save each and everyone of us from our own mortality.

Jesus died so that we would live,

“For we believe that Jesus died and rose again, and so we believe that God will bring with Jesus those who have fallen asleep in him.” 1 Thessalonians‬ ‭4:14‬ NIV

My friend, just as Christ felt alone that one dark Friday, two-thousand of years ago, there was a joy in the celebration of His resurrection three days later.

No matter where you are in your journey, what pain you may be feeling, or how dark your life may feel, remember this truth today;

“For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.” John‬ ‭3:16‬ ‭NIV‬‬

Just as God allowed His Son to suffer on that cross, He welcomed Him in His arms immediately following His death.

My friend, God has a plan for you as well. As a result of His Son, Jesus’ death, we now have life. This life is not dependent on how easy or difficult your life may be, but it is a promise God has offered to us, if we choose to accept this gift.

I have a challenge for you if you find yourself in a difficult situation. Take some time today to reflect back on where you have been, where you are, and where you are going in your life. Take some time to reflect back on how God has been with you and has not forsaken you, just as He did not forsake His only Son as He hung on a cross.

My friend, you may be saying, but He hasn’t been here with me. He has abandoned me because I wouldn’t be where I am today if He had not.

I am here to gently remind you just as Christ, for a moment, thought the same thing; we know from scriptures that God did not abandoned His Son, just as He has not abandoned you.

No matter how difficult today may be for you, take the time to celebrate our Risen Savior, for through His death, we will live.

Happy Easter!

#Findingyourcourage, Anxiety, Bible, Comfort, encouragement, Image, Inspiration, Journey, Strength, Weariness

Love, Strength and Sunsets

The Same Love That Created The Sunset, Loves You as Well

I hope my daughter doesn’t mind my sharing an absolutely beautiful sunset she sent me last night as she was crossing over the water on her way home. This sunset can only be made by God, it’s Creator.

Today’s message is short, but my prayer is that it is meaningful.

My friend, I am here to remind you today, no matter what you may be facing or what obstacles you may be trying to hurdle, that the same God who created this sunset is the same God who will walk you through your situation.

Here is a verse to cling to if you are in need of His promise to love us unconditionally,

“The Lord loves righteousness and justice; the earth is full of his unfailing love.” Psalm 33:5 NIV

‭‭I do not know what your circumstances are, but I know one thing that is true, God’s Love is always and forever, with no strings attached.

He loves us even when we forget how to love our selves.

Lean on Him today, My Friend! He will give you the strength you need.

Hugs to each and one of you! 💜

#Keepingitreal, Discouraged, encouragement, Inspiration, Journey, Joy, Keeping It Real, Weariness

Purposely Seeking Joy and Renewal

Seeking My Joy Today

My joy today has been seeing the beauty of the new spring growth popping up every where. Every day there are more leaves on the trees, more blossoms on the bushes and beautiful flowers showing up in the flower beds.

This new growth reminds me that no matter how dead life may look, there is always a season that flourishes and grows again. Trees that once looked dead are beautifully green again. Bushes that had no life are blossomed out in the most brilliant colors imaginable. Flower beds that were lifeless are growing again.

I love this season because it has a visible way of reminding us that no matter how dead our life may seem, it does not mean it will be like this forever.

Only can God bring back to life what has gone dormant and what appears to be dead. Like wise, He does the same for us.

Have you found yourself struggling in a personal season where everything around you seems dead? Relationships are hard at best. Hardships seem to be piling up all around you. You cry out to God, but you hear nothing in return?

My friend, this is your season of winter, but I am here to remind you today that this season, all be it hard right now, will not last forever. The season of spring is right around the corner.

I know some of you may be saying, but you don’t understand. It has been like this for so long. My friend, I’m here to encourage you, that I do understand and I’m here to encourage you that just as the snow falls in the winter, it melts and goes away. Just as the trees look lifeless and dead, they will sprout new leaves and be beautiful again. So will this happen in your life.

The season of spring and the beauty it produces is here to remind us that this dead season of winter will not last forever and the there is joy in the renewal and growth. Just as the flowers will bloom again, so will the beautiful things in your life.

It is my prayer for you today that you will have the hope to see that your difficult season in life will begin fade away and will begin to flourish and grow again soon.

My Friend, be encouraged by this reminder God shares with us;

“There is a time for everything, and a season for every activity under the heavens.” Ecclesiastes 3:1 (NIV)

Be encouraged today friends and know my joy can be yours as well.

Open your eyes and open your heart to see the freshness that spring brings forth.

#keepingitreal

Chronic Migraines, Courage, encouragement, Hope, Inspiration, Journal Journey, Journey, Keeping It Real, Life, Medical Journey, pain, Parenting, Rawness, Real, Rest, Strength

The Battle of Courage

Journaling Journey

It is Friday night again and we are sitting here together as Kiddo does another week of IgG Infusions.

This is not the best way for her to spend her Friday night, as most college students her age are out having fun, but doing it tonight is proving to be so much better for her.

By doing this on Friday night she is able to go to bed and sleep off the side effects that she was was trying to work (literally through) before she changed to Friday night. She is also able to rest her body tomorrow as she struggles through the remaining side effects.

She is amazingly strong and courageous. Every time she does this, she amazes me at the strength she has to sit there and inject 4 separate needles into her legs and then sit there for an hour or more while she waits for the infusion to finish.

For all she battles with her body on a daily basis, it breaks my heart to watch her, but I also find a sense of pride to call her my daughter because I know she has dig deep down inside to do something that the rest of us take for granted every day.

Her road ahead looks a bit dark as we struggle to figure out what it is going to take to give her her life back, but thankfully after four long hard years of struggling already and battling for the fights we have won and battling the fights we have lost, we are closer now to finding this solution than she has ever been in the years back.

It is my prayer that the journey she is on with the new medicines and treatments that there will be an end to this battle she battles within her body.

I was going to get ready to close until she just read me this amazingly fitting bible verse which I will share with you as well,

God is with her, she will not fall. Ps 46:5

God, you are amazing with your timing.

I was not going to write tonight as I often feel like what I write is not important and would not affect anyone else, but with closing with this verse and knowing Kiddo has no idea what I am doing, I know I was meant to write this tonight.

If you are battling a battle that is one you never dreamt you would battle, know you are not alone.

God has your back just as He has my daughter’s. He is with you, My Friend!

Find peace and comfort in this tonight.

Now I am going to close as I am sure Kiddos infusion should be close to being finished.

My friend, rest tonight. Allow God to take the burdens of the week away from you and sleep in the protection of His arms tonight.

Anxiety, Bible, Bondage, Challenge, Comfort, Courage, Discouraged, encouragement, Exhausted, Hope, Inspiration, Journey, Life, Rawness, Real, Strength, Stress, Trials, Weariness

What Do You Have In Your Boxes

Psalm 9_9-10 The Lord is a refuge for the oppressed, a stronghold in times of trouble.

Journaling Thoughts

Choosing Which Box to Open

I must just sit down and take some time to decompress from the stress of life. I feel like I am trapped on a hamster wheel and I cannot get off. I know everyone has problems, we are all human, but how we handle them is completely different.

Box of WorriesI for one, compartmentalized my stress and worries. I have so many issues and concerns that worry me that I have found if I place them all into their own individual boxes then I can open them as I need worry about them.

As for my boxes, they look a little like this…

  • One for finances.
  • One for my daughters’ medical issues.
  • One for my husband’s medical issues.
  • One for my blog.
  • One for my business.
  • One for staying on top of managing my home and family.
  • One for trying to be a good wife.
  • One for trying to be a good mom.
  • One for trying to be a good daughter.
  • One for trying to be a good friend.

And the list can go on and on and on.

Unfortunately, for me, I can have all my boxes opened at one time and have all the contents, or in this case worries and concerns, laying all over the floor in a big heaping mess.

In the “picture perfect” world, I would only open one box at a time, but not me. I am that “raw” and “real” mess and I am exposing myself to you today with the hopes of encouraging you to know, if you too are like me, you are not alone.

I am not, by any means, saying this is healthy, as I know it is not, but what I am saying is that it is real and there are others who live in this messiness, we call life.

By living this way, it is impossible to give all this the focus it needs to be done efficiently and therefore it feels like everything in my world is either getting ahead of me or I am constantly in a state of it all falling apart.

I juggle all of this and because I do, nothing on this list gets my undivided attention and as a result, makes me feel stressed out, inadequate, and frustrated.

Do you have a set of boxes similar to mine and find yourself feeling the same way?

Psalm 9_9-10 The Lord is a refuge for the oppressed, a stronghold in times of trouble.My friend, if you do, I am going to share with you what God shared with me this morning.

“The Lord is a refuge for the oppressed, a stronghold in the times of trouble.” Psalms 9:9-10 

We can use this verse as a means of strength when we are weak, as a source of courage when we are scared, and a source of comfort when we are lonely. 

When life has us knocked down like I described above, He is always there to guide us back to a time of stability and normalcy and strengthens us from our time of fragility. He is always there, even in the middle of our biggest messes, when we choose to open all our boxes at one time and then we feel overwhelmed and frightened by what awaits us.

My friend, God is our source of strength even in our darkest and weakest of times. If you have wandered away from Him and feel like you have strayed so far that He has forgotten you, I am here to remind you, you have not. He knows you and remembers you. He wants to be your comforter and your source of strength. He wants you to know you are loved unconditionally.

For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life. (1)Remember the familiar bible verse that so many of us learned when we were children or new Christians,

“For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.” John 3:16 NIV

He loves us all unconditionally. He loves us no matter how messy our lives are. He loves us despite how many boxes we may have or how many we may have open at one time.

There is one thing that remains consistent as I write this blog post and it is this; God keeps reminding me that no matter how many boxes I may have opened or how many boxes I may have dumped all over the floor at one time, He is reminding me that it can all be picked back up (similar to our children doing clean up and putting all their toys away) and that once it is all picked up and placed back in the box, the cover can be closed and we do not have to see the mess any longer.

My Friend, as I close out this post, it is my desire through exposing the rawness of my life, that you are encouraged by knowing no matter what you are going through, God is still by your side. He is there comforting us as we open our boxes and wants us to turn to Him while we navigate our way through the boxes.

Be encouraged and know that no matter how dark and messy life may seem, there is always a hope to cling to and that hope is our Savior who is “ALWAYS” by our side. We are never alone no matter how lonely you may feel.

Peace and comfort my friend as you finish reading this. It is my desire if you struggle with the same messiness I struggle with, that God can use my ugly revelation today to encourage you to know you are not alone and that above everything else to know God is and will always be by your side.