Month: November 2018

If there is one thing that I could say has really held me back in my life it is regret.

Regret of the mistakes I made in the past, regret of the things I didn’t do when I was younger, regret of a life wasted in looking for a sense of belonging in all the wrong places. Whenever I was alone with my thoughts I felt myself drifting off into this rut of regret.

It was a turning point for me when I realised the more I held onto and lived in regret, the more regret I was adding to my life. It was holding me back, it was a constant state of disappointment and depression. I was stuck in a place of just looking behind me and every day that passed by was a day wasted.

Once we are saved and we become a follower of Jesus, looking back to our worldly selves is not an option. Jesus paid it all for us, He died on a cross to save us from this very thing. Jesus brings us into newness in Him and we need to keep looking forward to the promises and plans God has for our lives.

When Lot and his wife were gracefully allowed to escape the destroying of Sodom and Gomorrah. God gave strict instruction for them to keep moving forward and not to look back. Lot’s wife, however, stopped to look back and she turned into a pillar of salt. In this moment, she turned away from God’s plan for her life. This is a story that can very much be applied to our lives today. Jesus told us to remember Lot’s wife.

Luke 17:32-33 MSG
“Remember what happened to Lot’s wife?
If you grasp and cling to life on your terms, you’ll lose it, but if you let that life go, you’ll get life on God’s terms.”

When we’re holding onto the things of the past we’re doing life on our terms and it won’t be a life well spent. If we dont consciously make an effort to move out of this space, we will get stuck there.

We add more to our future when we stop looking backward with regret and start looking forward with hope! Every day is a new day with a new opportunity of its own to present us with. When we look forward, we start dreaming, and working towards those dreams and we find something worth living for. We get life on God’s terms and the plans He has for our lives.

Friends, I want to encourage you today if you’re holding onto regret, let it go. When you find yourself drifting into that space, stop right there and realign your thoughts to God’s plan for your life. Look forward in Hope!

Much love

Di

xxx

The past few days have been rather testing for me, it seemed like everywhere I turned there was a challenge waiting for me to hurdle over. Days like this can be very overwhelming, draining and painful.

However, what I noticed is that God seemed to give me lots of little “mornings” throughout my day. I love how through the challenges He sends you little reminders of how good He is and that He’s with you, literally carrying you through the challenges.

Wherever there is a sunset, there is a sunrise waiting.

Lamentations 3:22-23 ESV
The steadfast love of the Lord never ceases, his mercies never come to an end, they are new every morning; great is your faithfulness.

It is so comforting to know that even on the days when I feel like the challenges of life are surrounding me, I am more surrounded by God than my challenges! He is ever present!

Those who are close to us will know that as a family we are having a bit of a rough time, a time of testing. A time of testing has its moments of loneliness. When that testing comes, we gain strength by seeking God and His truth and He surrounds us with people to love and support us and show us His love, comfort and understanding. I am grateful for this.

Psalm 125:2
As the mountains surround Jerusalem, so the LORD surrounds his people both now and forevermore.

In God we have the confidence and strength to overcome. He surrounds us with his mercies, provision, love, comfort and so much more. We don’t need to worry about what tomorrow will bring, He already has that covered.

I find so much comfort in knowing that I can peacefully wake up everday knowing that God’s mercies are new every morning. Knowing that He is faithful and if He has promised to give us a life full of Hope and a future full of prosperity, that is exactly what He will do. He is not man that He should lie, He is a faithful God!

I do pray this has given you some encouragement for whatever test you are going through right now. Remember you are not surrounded by your troubles, you are surrounded by God who is much bigger than your troubles!

Do have a look at this past blog of mine about some truths I learnt in facing trials:

7 Truths for Trials

God bless

Di

As I go deeper and deeper in my relationship with God and grow spiritually, I realise more and more my Identity in Christ and who He intended for me to be. It just makes me want to share with the world how God can mould and shape you, how He can change you and work miracles in your life.

I find myself looking back to my 15 year old self. That young teenage girl who had no idea who she was, who hated herself and who was in so much pain she wanted to end her life. I find myself looking at her as if she is right in front of me, feeling her emotions as if they are someone else’s and I feel sad that she ever felt that way.

I wish I could by some miracle just go back in time, hug her and whisper in her ear the things I know now, the growth I have experienced now. I wish I could show her photographs and videos of the woman that lost young girl has become as she got older, or better yet let her see inside my heart as it is now.

Then I realise that it’s because of that lost young teenager, that I am able to stand here today and speak of the miracles God has done in my life. I can speak of every time He has protected me from harm. I can speak of every time He has comforted me when I was going through a difficult time. I can speak of how He has delivered me from substance abuse and looking for love in all the wrong places. I can speak of how I know a love like I’ve never known before.

That lost young teenager is not someone of my past, she is very much a big part of who I am today and the reason I am who I am today. If I had to go back and whisper in her ear, my life right now would probably look very different and I couldn’t imagine enjoying anything else than what I do now.

When we look back on our lives, we should be grateful for everything we have been through, the lessons learnt, the experiences, the trials, the failures, the challenges and even the traumas make up part of who we are today. Its in those moments God plants seeds that will later grow and flourish as He makes all things new within you. God can use any situation, trial or failure and turn it into good for His glory!

Romans 8:28

And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to his purpose.

Revelation 21:5

“Behold, I am making all things new”

I hope this post will remind you of the work God has done in your life if you are perhaps feeling a little hopeless or of low self esteem. We may not be where we want to be yet, but we certainly are not where we were. I love that God may find us a certain way but He loves us enough not to leave us the same.

God bless,

Di

I have been challenged by my new found friend from The Electric Contrarian to the 3.2.1. Quote Me challenge! My word is: Embrace

Thanks so much for the nomination!

EMBRACE:

When we embrace the challenges we face as an opportunity for God to transform us, we open the door for miracles to take place, a testimony to arise and someone else’s life being inspired and changed.

So often we listen to what the world says we are and forget that we were made in the image and likeness of God. Embrace who you are in Christ, you have been fearfully and wonderfully made for a purpose. Live in that truth everyday!

It’s now time for me to nominate 3 other blogger friends to do the same.

The Rules Of This Challenge Are As Follows:

• Thank the Selector

• Post 2 quotes for the dedicated topic of the day

• Select 3 bloggers to take part in ‘3.2.1 Quote Me!’

• And give them a topic/word

Note: Although this is the topic for today there is no specific deadline to it, meaning you can answer when you chose.

I nominate the following incredible bloggers to do the same:

Revolutionary Musings

The Godly Chic Diaries

God Inspired Art

YOUR WORD IS: IDENTITY

Thanks again for the nomination! I enjoyed this exercise so much!

Much love

Di

I had this moment with a cashier the other night. I had arrived at the till with my goods and she was just so distracted and not at all friendly. This is usually an irritation for me, bad service that is, but for some reason in this moment I felt the need to be a little extra friendly. I sympathised with her about having to work nightshift and she proceeded to tell me that she had just come back from a weeks leave after burying her child. I was totally gobsmacked that I had initially judged her for not being friendly enough.

We continued conversation and she proceeded to tell me that her child of just 10 years old had cancer and after years of the battle he did not make it. We spoke for a little while and I gave her some kind words of encouragement and said I would keep her in my prayers, which I did. Before I left, she smiled at me and said thank you.

I left feeling distraught. I couldn’t stop thinking about the moment. No amount of time off can be enough when you are grieving the loss of your young child, and she was clearly not ready to be back at work. I guess in her circumstances she really needed the income, so she had to be there even if she didn’t feel ready yet.

What I learnt is that when we choose kindness over other feelings of irritation, anger, judgement, it really goes a long way. We, as humans, are so quick to judge, but yet we don’t know that person’s story. We don’t know what morning they have had or what struggles they have going on in their lives. We make assumptions and give labels far too quickly.

This really got me thinking about other incidents in my life where I have been too quick to judge someone and even moments when I have been judged.

A little bit of kindness really goes a long way. When I looked back on the conversation I had with this cashier, I noticed that when I had walked in she was grumpy but when I left she smiled at me. Perhaps that little conversation had made her day.

When Jesus travelled teaching multitudes of people, He was moved by compassion for them, and He healed them. His heart is one of kindness, He chose kindness over other reactions. I guess He already knew the impact it would have. Kindness can change a day, turn sadness into a moment of happiness, plant a seed, heal someone or even change a life.

When we don’t choose it, we could be fuelling the fire of grief, depression, stress and ultimately be adding reason for someone losing all hope. It is so important that we rid ourselves of our selfish ways and consider others. When we meet people along our journey through life, whether it be a cashier, a homeless person, an acquaintance, whoever it may be, be present in the moment and choose kindness.

I like to think that when Jesus met someone along His journey who was perhaps a bit rude or off, He was lead by His heart in dealing with them and His kindness branched from a place of compassion and forgiveness.

Everyone is fighting a battle we don’t know about, everyone reacts differently to their battles. Some are able to be happy and keep up with the rest of life through it and others find that slightly more difficult.

In God’s word it says, we should not be so quick to judge, in the same way we judge so we will also be judged.

Matthew 7:1-2
“Judge not, that you be not judged. For with the judgment you pronounce you will be judged, and with the measure you use it will be measured to you.”

God’s word also says that we are to love one another as God has loved us.

John 13: 34
“And now I give you a new commandment: love one another. As I have loved you, so you must love one another.”

We are also advised in God’s word to clothe ourselves with compassion, kindness, forgiving one another and living in unity with each other.

Colossians 3:12‭-‬15 NIV
“Therefore, as God’s chosen people, holy and dearly loved, clothe yourselves with compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience. Bear with each other and forgive one another if any of you has a grievance against someone. Forgive as the Lord forgave you. And over all these virtues put on love, which binds them all together in perfect unity. Let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts, since as members of one body you were called to peace. And be thankful.”

Ephesians 4:32

Be kind to one another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, as God in Christ forgave you.

Kindness is not only a biblical principle, the effects of showing kindness will bring hope into a broken world. If we want to show kindness we need to have an attitude of compassion and love for others, forgiving those who struggle to function during their battles and choose kindness as a way of dealing with everyone we come across. Jesus has showed us His loving kindness and we are called to continue that work here on earth because of the very fact that He was kind enough to lay down His life for us.

My encouragement to you is that as we go about our daily lives and meet people along the way, be mindful of the many stories there are around us that we know nothing about. Be sure to wear compassion, forgiveness, love and kindness everyday so you’re better equipped to handle the untold stories in people you meet.

I pray we can perfect this together! I’d love to hear from you.

Much love,

Di

I used to be a person who had an incredibly low self esteem, so low I would cover the mirrors in my house until I needed to use them for makeup or when someone came to visit. When I did, I would look at everything that was wrong with me, telling myself I didn’t like this or that!

I decided I didn’t want to feel this way anymore after I met God, and so i uncovered all the mirrors and every time I walked past one I made a point of stopping to find something I like about myself, even when I noted a flaw. This filtered through into my thought life over the years.

I learnt that the conversations we have with ourselves in the mirror regarding our self worth are way more important than the conversations we have with others. You see what they say about you doesnt matter, but what does matter is what God says about you and what you say about you. When we look in the mirror we should be saying the things that God says in His word to ourselves.

“I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made;your works are wonderful, I know that full well.” Psalm 139:14

God doesn’t make mistakes,He made all of our features uniquely, fearfully and wonderfully. our eyes, our hair, our nose, even my special chin.. hehe.

What we say after the words “I am” is probably the most important words you will say to yourself, as they will build who you are. If we say ” I am ugly” we will look and feel ugly BUT if we say ” I am beautiful, I am fearfully and wonderfully made” we will look that way, feel that way, speak that way and send off messages to others to feel that way too!

Have good conversations with yourself in the mirror, ones of light and life! Use positive words after the words “I Am”. Be intentional about it!

Much love

Di

Ephesians 5 gives us the perfect guideline for a Godly marriage / household. How do we do this when both of us are imperfect? We find it difficult to fulfill our roles to one another in marriage when one hurts the other, perhaps disappoints the other. We hold onto hurt from the past and count up wrong doings, building up resentment towards one another. Eventually, we find ourselves living separate lives, happy individually but unhappy together.

Ephesians 5:21‭-‬24‭, ‬26‭-‬33 NIV

Submit to one another out of reverence for Christ. Wives, submit yourselves to your own husbands as you do to the Lord. For the husband is the head of the wife as Christ is the head of the church, his body, of which he is the Savior. Now as the church submits to Christ, so also wives should submit to their husbands in everything. to make her holy, cleansing her by the washing with water through the word, and to present her to himself as a radiant church, without stain or wrinkle or any other blemish, but holy and blameless. In this same way, husbands ought to love their wives as their own bodies. He who loves his wife loves himself. After all, no one ever hated their own body, but they feed and care for their body, just as Christ does the church— for we are members of his body. “For this reason a man will leave his father and mother and be united to his wife, and the two will become one flesh.” This is a profound mystery—but I am talking about Christ and the church. However, each one of you also must love his wife as he loves himself, and the wife must respect her husband.

Romans 12:10 says “Be devoted to one another in love. Honor one another above yourselves”.

This means, we love first and foremost, it means we put aside our own needs, wants, insecurities, pain etc and we unconditionally love. We love even if our husbands forgot to take the black bag out on dirt day, or if our wives forgot to make the bed. It means we love even though he / she said that hurtful thing. We made a commitment to share the rest of our lives together and in that commitment we are devoted to one another in love, putting the other above ourselves regardless of their imperfections.

What is love though? We think it’s a feeling, that butterflies feeling while still courting each other before marriage. We think it’s that honeymoon or “just got married” feeling. When that’s gone, we think our marriage is over.

Love is not that feeling. God is love, He loved the world so much that He gave His one and only son to save the sins of the whole world. Jesus went around preaching all over to multitudes of people showing them love every where He went. Love is a choice to be a number of things as we see in 1 Corinthians.

1 Corinthians 13:4-8

“Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. It does not dishonor others, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres. Love never fails.”

Love is a choice to always be patient and kind, even when you don’t feel like it. Love is a choice to forgive others and keep no record of their wrongdoings. Love is a choice to always protect, hope, persevere etc. Love is not envious, love is appreciating when your spouse is better than you in some things. Love is not self seeking, love is putting your spouse above yourself. It’s these choices that help us to be devoted to one another in love, and to honour one another above ourselves.

These are choices we should be making on a daily basis in our marriage, to strengthen the marriage union. It may take unlearning some thought patterns, behaviours etc, but if you make a choice to get on the journey you’re already closer to a happy marriage God’s way.

Colossians 3:12‭-‬15 NIV

“Therefore, as God’s chosen people, holy and dearly loved, clothe yourselves with compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience. Bear with each other and forgive one another if any of you has a grievance against someone. Forgive as the Lord forgave you. And over all these virtues put on love, which binds them all together in perfect unity. Let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts, since as members of one body you were called to peace. And be thankful.”

In this piece of Scripture we see that we are to clothe ourselves with these virtues, for everyone we meet. Jesus heart for the church, is the heart we wear in marriage. The design for what God intended for marriage to look like as mentioned in Ephesians 5, will follow after, as you continue to pray and strengthen your marriage.

My husband and I have been married 4 years and in this time we have learnt some valuable lessons through our mistakes, this is just to name one of them. Some have been harder to deal with than others but we are determined to work at it. There is no other person I would have rather experienced this with. We did a marriage course earlier this year, which helped us realise so much about marriage God’s way. We have found the keys to unlocking Eden in our marriage in Gods word, in Jesus Heart. I would encourage every married couple to attend one of these, all of them if you have to.

Learn as much as you can together about marriage God’s way, your relationship will bear much fruit from watering the right seeds in your marriage. Have the courage to ask God what it is about you that needs to change in order for your marriage to reach the next level. Pray for each other, pray for yourself, pray apart and pray together!

I trust you have found some encouragement and hope through reading this blog at least one married couple will choose a road of recovery rather than divorce.

Much love,

Di