My Precious Treasure

In a recent leadership meeting at church our Chief of Staff took a moment to give recognition to Sweet Pea. She talked about how much she has grown up and is always so well-behaved in meetings and around the church in general. That made me feel great as a parent but it was what she said next that really stuck with me. She went on to celebrate how Sweet Pea already has a heart for worship and servitude at such a young age. She celebrated how she is always ready to help mommy during our women’s sessions and is actually excited about it. I can’t really describe how much that statement filled my heart with joy. As I looked down at my bashful Sweet Pea and fought back tears, I realized I hadn’t really looked at her in that way before nor really recognized just how much she has grown not just physically, but spiritually.

To say that she is a church baby is quite the understatement. She is with mommy and daddy at every Bible Study, Sunday Morning Worship service, Children’s church event, leadership trainings, meetings…you name it, she’s there! Normally I pack her some activities to keep her occupied, but more and more she’s less interested in those activities and desire to be a part of the service. At our church during praise & worship we go down to the altar. I love being free in worship and when I’m not all the way caught up lol I love watching her as she worships in her own way. I’ve caught her a few times looking back at me to see what I was doing. If I have my hands lifted in worship, so does she. If I’m worshipping through my words, after looking back she will turn around and open her mouth to give praise to the Master. While I find it cute and have giggled a time or two, I now see how much she is starting to understand.

Before I would have to tell her to close her eyes for prayer or to lift her hands in worship, but now she goes for it all on her own. She even comes back home and carries on her own worship service with us as her congregation or with her dolls and stuff animals. She runs to grab her Bible to bring to one of us to read or to look at the pictures and “read” it for herself. She understands the power of prayer and will quickly ask for you to pray for her stumped toe or bumped knee lol. It all just makes me heart glad. My prayer is that she continues on this Christian journey and as she gets older goes for God like none before. I pray that her father and I will continue to be great examples of the love of Christ through parenting her and that we will slow down from every day life to cultivate that ever-growing flame in her heart. That we will walk the scriptures with her and ultimately lead her towards fulfilling her purpose in life. I don’t want her to have to wait as long as I did to give Christ a full surrender. I don’t want her to miss opportunities, I want her to be SO much better than me in every aspect of life.

I know that the special recognition was directed at Sweet Pea but I would like to believe that it was for me and Hubby as well. It was a wake up call that we need to do all that we can now to stir up all of the gifts and purpose that are within Sweet Pea. It is our duty to protect and shield her from anything that could detour her away from what God has placed over her life. Even at the age of 4. We have to be careful what she is exposed to and what we allow her to participate in. I know I’ve said it before but I am so thankful that my Father chose me to mother this precious treasure and I’m going to do all that I can to bring Him glory through her.

But we have this precious treasure [the good news about salvation] in [unworthy] earthen vessels [of human frailty], so that the grandeur and surpassing greatness of the power will be [shown to be] from God [His sufficiency] and not from ourselves. ~ 2 Corinthians 4:7 AMP

Peace & Blessings,

Photo Cred: https://www.pinterest.com/explore/daughter-quotes/

He Makes It Easy

My Daddy is SO amazingly faithful!!! He is such a good, good Father and I am forever grateful!!! #MySurrender #HisWill #HisPlan #HisTiming

This was a recent status I posted on Facebook to share just how appreciative I am of my Lord, my Heavenly Father, my Daddy. Do you ever just sit back and think about ALL He has done for you. I mean ALL He has done. If not take a second and think about it now. If you can’t think of anything specific think of how He woke you up this morning, how you still have breath in your body, how you made it to work or your destination safely this morning. The list could go on and on. Now that I have you thinking, reflect over a prayer that you put up before the Lord, I mean something that you really wanted and/or needed and then think of His response to that request.

That’s what I want to focus on today. As I told you last week I have a lot up before the Lord that I want to accomplish in 2017, one of which came to pass last week!! (2017 is off to a great start! 🙂 ) This particular request I have desired for a long, long time. I mean we are talking 10+ years. I had put it on the back burner because it just never seemed like the right timing, or in all honesty I didn’t see how it could be done. I came back up recently around Christmas. I mentioned it to my husband but didn’t really press the issue because again I just didn’t see how it could be done. I decided to go about it a different way this time, I went to my Daddy with all sincerity and once again placed this desire up before Him. I would pray “Lord I don’t how or when you are going to do it but this has now moved from a want to a need. Lord we need a bigger vehicle”. It may not seem like a big task but seeing as though we are in the process of purchasing a home (it’s going to happen this year!) we really did not want to add anything else to our budget….But God!

Remember I told you this request stirred up again around Christmas. Well let’s fast forward a bit. About 2 weeks ago Hubby sent me a text about a truck and asked me if I wanted to go and see it. I’m like sure, no problem what’s the harm in looking. What happened, I fell in love with it! Again I spoke with my Daddy and said “I don’t know how or when, but Lord do it”. Long story short….HE DID IT!!! And when I tell ya’ll He did it, I mean He did it! Everything I have ever wanted in a truck He gave me just that. And the best part of all, this amazing blessing is not costing hubby and I an arm and a leg. He blessed us with this fully loaded, 4 wheel drive Suburban for less than half of the book value. Did you read that….less than half of the book value!!! When God moves, He moves and He makes the way easy!

Something that I have desired for over 10 years happened within a 3 week span of my earnest request and sincere faith. I felt like a kid in the candy store when I drove Black Beauty (yes I named her) for the first time. I wanted to scream, shout, cry, but most importantly I couldn’t stop saying thank you to my Daddy. This was all because of Him. He remembered my desire all those years ago, He heard my recent request and silent petitions that this is what I truly desired. And then He opened a mighty door and made the process so easy. It just feels my heart with so much joy to know that He cares that much about me. And I truly believe that this is only the beginning of many great things to come this year.

So as I close this post out today, I want to encourage you to continue to put your desires up before the Lord. Be up front and honest with Him, after all He knows the desires of your heart so there is no need to sugar coat anything. Once you have laid it out activate your faith like never before. Believe that if it is within His plan and His will then within His timing it will come to pass. However if it doesn’t happen when you desire, don’t fret, just trust and believe that He has something greater in store for you. Ask me how I know, because I’m a living witness. If He did it for me, surely He will do it for you!

 For with God nothing [is or ever] shall be impossible. ~ Luke 1:37 AMP

Peace & Blessings,

 

(Photo Cred: http://ewlaser.co.za/index.php?id_product=29&controller=product)

#WINNING

Have you ever wanted to #WIN at something so bad that you talk yourself out of it or write-it-off before you ever even begin to try? Well that was me yesterday as I was discussing the matter of changing up some things in my daily diet with my fellow Girlfriends. I was so quick to respond “I’m just SCARED lol” and then they asked “but why?” And then I had the nerve to say “to fail” (I know shame on me). So this morning I decided to define both scared and failure:

Scared – thrown into or being in a state of fear, fright, or panic

Failure – lack of success, a falling short, a state of inability to perform a normal function, omission of occurrence or performance

But wait that’s not how I would describe myself! I know what the Bible says and declares for my life so how dare I speak so lightly of it.

For God hath not given us the spirit of fear; but of power, and of love, and of a sound mind. ~ 2 Timothy 1:7 (KJV)

So on today I just want to encourage you ladies that no matter what it is your facing (financial difficulties, weight gain, anxiety, depression, etc.) every morning you awake to a new day, new mercies, another chance to #WIN in life. Don’t allow fear or failure to try and dictate your life! When you hear that little voice saying you CAN’T at something, stand firm on God’s promises and respond back with the attitude of “well devil just what if I actually DO succeed, now what” #WINNING

You fail if you don’t attempt and you will never know if you’ll succeed if you never try. ~ E. Ford

And with that – let’s make life each and every day about #WINNING with Jesus!

But thanks be to God, which giveth us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ. ~ 1 Corinthians 15:57 (KJV)

Have a wonderful weekend ladies!

Joy for Your Day,

Take the Limits Off

No limits, no boundaries, I see increase all around me…

It is typical at the top of a new year to be inspired to start fresh with new goals and aspirations to reach before the next year rolls in. There is absolutely nothing wrong with that, in fact that is exactly what we should be doing, pushing harder to do better. Within the first month most people are still on the new year high but say after about March, maybe April that starts to die down. Life happens and some of those goals and plans get put on the back burner. Eventually you start feeling like this is life and those dreams become a distant memory, or a thought of what could have been. Why does this happen year in and year out. Why do we allow life circumstances to limit us to only the ins and outs of a typical day? Think about it for a minute.

This is usually my story, or has been in the past. I start off in a good place, speak a good game, but deep down struggle with believing that it will and can actually happen. I proclaim with my lips that I trust the Lord with all my being, but in my heart struggle with doubt and fear far too much. I see it happen for others around me and though it feels good to say, it’s going to happen for me too, never really go after it and instead sit back and wait for it to magically appear in my lap. I don’t know about you, but I’m tired of living this way. I am ready for SO much more out of life. I have missed SO many opportunities in the past but guess what, the bulk stops here! I am tired of thinking about the shoulda, coulda, woulda in my life. I’m ready to take some action and not just think it but begin to speak it more and most importantly live it. The Lord has blessed me with far too many gifts and talents and I refuse to continue to just sit on them.

I’m taking the limits completely off in 2017. In every aspect of my life, I’m removing all the limits. I will no longer live in fear, in bondage, in doubt. I can’t anymore. How can I proclaim to be a child of the most high and operate in fear. Both can not dwell in the same place. I make my baby repeat this all the time when she feels scared and its time for mommy to do the same:

“For God did not give us a spirit of timidity or cowardice or fear, but [He has given us a spirit] of power and of love and of sound judgment and personal discipline [abilities that result in a calm, well-balanced mind and self-control].” ~ 2 Timothy 1:7

It’s time to activate that power within me through that of the Holy Spirit and trust that He will open mighty doors when the time is right. But until He does it is my responsibility to serve Him whole-heartedly, without limit, give Him a bigger Yes, and believe that if it is in His perfect will for my life then it will be done. I can no longer just speak it but I have to truly believe that certain things are going to happen in my life.

 “Jesus said to him, “[You say to Me,] ‘If You can?’ All things are possible for the one who believes and trusts [in Me]!” ~ Mark 9:23

And I cannot only limit it to the large things in life, but the small things too. I have a laundry list of things up before the Lord ranging from the right school for Sweet Pea next year, to home ownership (it is going to happen this year!), to financial freedom, to increased business opportunities, the list goes on and on. I am finally at a place where I am excited about what is getting ready to happen. In years past I have said “This will be my year” but this year’s declaration is different. Not only will this be my year for many things, but I’m opening that declaration to say that the restraints and the limits have been removed and now the sky is the limit. I’m going higher from here. Higher in my worship, higher in my praise, higher in my surrendered Yes, higher in my assignment, essentially higher in life! I’m ready for that which the Lord has prepared for me. I’m happy to be in a place to say that I’m excited and its all because there are no limits, no boundaries and I can now see increase all around me…

Now to Him who is able to [carry out His purpose and] do superabundantly more than all that we dare ask or think [infinitely beyond our greatest prayers, hopes, or dreams], according to His power that is at work within us,” ~ Ephesians 3:20

Peace & Blessings,

(Photo Cred: https://www.pinterest.com/pin/554294666614372720)

Reason for the Season

‘Twas the Friday before Christmas and all through the house… so it’s technically the eve of Christmas Eve right? lol… is anybody else on a Christmas is coming high?!? (I know it aint just me ;-)) Well guess what girlfriends? It is coming in just 2 more days!! What a wonderful time to be alive and amongst the living to give honor to Jesus Christ! I just wanted to leave you with a few scriptures to remind us all of why we celebrate Christmas, better yet of why we celebrate Jesus – the reason for the season.

Behold, a virgin shall be with child, and shall bring forth a son, and they shall call his name Emmanuel, which being interpreted is, God with us. Matthew 1:23

*Jesus was born so that God could be with you and me

Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above, and cometh down from the Father of lights, with whom is no variableness, neither shadow of turning. James 1:17

*Christmas lights should be a reminder that God is the Father of lights and that every good and perfect gift comes from Him

But sanctify the Lord God in your hearts: and be ready always to give an answer to every man that asketh you a reason of the hope that is in you with meekness and fear: 1 Peter 3:15

*Not everyone we see knows the true reason for the season, a lot of people get caught up in the commercial driven hype of Christmas, but it is our responsibility to tell them about our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ

Well ladies that’s all I want to share with you and I pray that those 3 scriptures touched your hearts.

Let us pray… God I thank you for another opportunity to sow into the life of the person reading this, I pray that I may draw just one person closer to you. I pray that none of us will get caught up in the hype of Christmas and steer away from Jesus. That we would NOT fall victim of over spending to give gifts to our families and friends. I pray that none of us will experience grief, depression, anxiety, nor debt this season. And that we all will remember the precious gift of LOVE. It is in your precious son’s Jesus’ name I pray. AMEN.

God bless you all and have a very Merry CHRISTmas!

Joy for Your Day,

I’m Just NOT READY!

Long hallways, school bell, huge cafeteria, teachers, TAs, core classes, electives, recess, before & after care…..you guessed it…Kindergarten and I’m just NOT READY!!!

I recently just started going on magnet school tours to get a feel for the school that I want Sweet Pea to attend next year and it is a bit much. There is just SO much to consider. There are SO many different school based themes and tracks to consider and ultimately I just want what is best for my Sweet Pea. On top of all of that my emotions are on an all time high! I think its worse this time than what I described in my previous post, I Got the Blues, when I talked about my feelings with her starting preschool. This time its the real thing. When she enters that school next August, she will no longer be my baby, she will be a big girl like for real and y’all I am just NOT READY!!!

I was a soldier during the first tour, but yesterday was a little different. As the magnet coordinator and school principal walked us down the halls, showing us the ins and outs of their programs I could feel the anxiety rise and tears start to well. I had to swallow hard a few times as I watched the kids working hard in their classrooms and picturing my Sweet Pea there with them. When we went in the cafeteria I almost lost it! All I could see in my mind was Sweet Pea walking with her tray, trying to find a seat and I just wanted to scream. And to make matters worse this is when a question was posed by another parent asking if the kindergartners are escorted to their classes and to lunch and the answer was NO! **insert distressed emoji** What do you mean no? What if my baby gets lost? In my mind all I see is her clammed up crying because she doesn’t know where to go which will make me cry because I will not there to help her. (Tears welling up again)

Every night when I put Sweet Pea in bed, after she has said her prayers and I love yous and kisses have been given, she always asks if I’m going to stay with her tomorrow. During the week, my reply is always “no mommy has to go to work tomorrow” to which her response is “No mommy I want you to stay with me”. I think this is the brink of my anxiety and all of this emotion, knowing that I can’t be with her at all times and one day her desires will change and she will be on her own path in life. In my mind and in my heart she will always be my sweet, sweet 4lb 8oz baby that will always need and depend on me. And although l will always be here for her I just have to accept that its time to let her go and allow her to develop into her own person. And to think I want to have another baby and go thru this all over again LOL!

I need for y’all to pray for me, like for real. I know that I am not the only mother that has gone through this process, and I may be a little dramatic in how I’m dealing with it all, but I need my Girlfriends to back me up because I’m just NOT READY!

Peace & Blessings,

Dancing in the Rain

Today was a cold, rainy day here in NC. Days like this tend to be viewed as depressing, doom and gloom if you will. The perfect weather for staying in the bed, focusing on all things “sad” or reflecting on what is currently not going the way we think. Why is that? Why do we allow our mood to alter due to the weather? That’s another topic for another day. Anyway back to my thoughts for today. Typically on days like today, my Sweet Pea loves to jump in the puddles. It could be raining cats and dogs, while I’m trying to seek shelter to protect our hair, she prefers to take an extra second to simply enjoy the rain. She finds joy in what she’s focused on, her current situation (the puddle), regardless of what’s going on around her. Stick with me, I’m going somewhere with this.

Today I want to take a moment to encourage my single sisters. I was talking to one of the girlfriends the other day about the dating scene. I’ve been out of the game for almost 8 years now, but would like to think I am still able to give pointers here or there to someone still in their season of singleness. As we all know, we are officially in the midst of engagement season. As we get closer to Christmas, the engagement announcements will begin to pop up left and right. For someone who desires to post their own, however it’s not in physical sight right now, this could be slightly discouraging. While you may be happy for your newly engaged sister, deep down you are wishing it were you. While there is nothing wrong with that, if you wallow in it for too long it could make matters worse for you. How do I know? Because I’ve been there…

I’ve never told Girlfriend Tamara this, but when she and her husband got engaged I felt some type of way about it. I remember sitting in the restaurant on a cold and rainy night, at the table clapping and cheering with everyone else, yet screaming on the inside. You see, hubby and I met and started dating before she and her husband and in that moment I was angry because that was supposed to me. In that season of life I wanted SO badly to become a wife. That was ALL I was focused on. I would ask hubby constantly when he was going to propose to me instead of being patient and enjoying our courtship. I should have left it alone and put all of that energy in celebrating with my sister because it was her moment, not mine. Now don’t get me wrong I was (and still am) extremely happy for her. At the time I was being extremely selfish, self-centered and childish. I wanted a ring and was blinded by the bling. I could have saved myself from a lot of sleepless nights if I would have taken my eyes and thoughts off what I desired and put them back on what mattered, the Lord. I think I was somewhat angry with Him as well. But how many of us know regardless of the tantrum we throw, He was and is the One that holds the timeline of our lives. If I would have gotten engaged in the wrong season, I may not have made it to where I am now.

woman-1030944_1920What am I saying today? All of my single sisters be encouraged in your season of singleness. It’s natural to have a desire to be married, it’s a part of why you were created and a part of the purpose that is yet to be revealed in you. Just do not allow it to consume you like it did me. I missed out on so many opportunities because I was so focused on the next season instead of enjoying the current one. This season may seem doom and gloom at times, and you may have some days where you would just rather stay in bed wallowing in your sorrow, I get it. But just like my Sweet Pea you have to find a “puddle” and enjoy the moment. If you have gotten off track, put your focus and trust back in the Master knowing that all things will work for your good despite how you feel. Push past your emotions and feelings and instead rejoice in this moment today. Take this time to embrace and appreciate your season of singleness, enjoy life to the fullest, and instead of waiting on it to change, simply learn to dance in the rain…

that He will give the rain for your land in its season, the early [fall] rain and the late [spring] rain, so that you may gather in your grain and your new wine and your [olive] oil. ~ Deuteronomy 11:14 AMP

Peace & Blessings,

sig KT

Reflections

reflections(singing) Looking back over my years, I guess, I’ve shedded some tears… Hey girls! Its Friday [woot woot] we’ve made it! And if you’re still singing Teddy P in your heads please “LET IT GO” lol.  Today I want to take a moment to reflect on life. I know this is something typically done at the end of the year and people start thinking of New Year’s resolutions, but my reflecting is related to the 33rd year of my life. See Sunday is my birthday (YAY ME!) and I must tell you that last year this time was really different for me. I wish I could paint this beautiful picture for you and say the most wonderfully pleasing things that you hear in the movies and on tv. BUT that wasn’t how my life was setup! See I was going through – existing in an unhappy marriage, failing in motherhood, and drowning in financial woes. I was ready to walk away and mentally I think I had walked away. It took lots of prayers, counseling, and an unexpected blessing from God to change my attitude, to open my eyes to what was really going on in my life. He had to put me in a place to where I could only seek after Him. He needed me and I needed Him. So in this time, I had to woMAN-up, I had to keep a Word in my heart and mouth at all times. Scriptures like:

Marriage is honourable in all – Hebrews 13:4

Her children rise up and bless her – Proverbs 31:28

This poor man cried, and the Lord heard him and saved him out of all his troubles – Psalm 34:6

Behold, children are a gift of the Lord, the fruit of the womb is a reward – Psalm 127:3

Girlfriends, facing the realities of life is difficult. People will hurt you, but God will protect you. He’s never put more on you than you can bear. He’s always there – never leaves you nor forsakes you. This is my reflection on year 33. (I warned you, it wasn’t pretty) And I can now say that I’m entering into a new year of my life in a once-again happy marriage, progressing in motherhood, and tackling debt. God has opened and closed so many doors for me and my family. I look forward to so many many blessings for year 34! I serve a BIG GOD that wants to elevate and promote me (and you too).

Let’s pray – God we thank you for the uncontrollable things of life. Although Its human nature for us want to cry out woes and question why, we give you praises for what you’ve done. As we live out this last month in 2016, we ask that you draw us nearer to you. Let us be quiet and still, so that we may hear from you. Now, God I ask that you would bless the person reading this, give them the confidence and awareness to know you are God, all mighty, all powerful, all loving. No matter what they are facing and will face, remind them that there is nothing too hard for you. We give you thanks for life and pray that we reflect your love in our daily lives. In Jesus’ Name. Amen.

I leave you with this song, please stay encouraged.

Joy for Your Day,

sig TW

#ThursdayThoughts

In continuing the flow of the week and on this first day of December, remember everyday still counts! Let’s close out the last 31 days of 2016 being our best cheerleader and continue to live and walk on purpose.

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sig EF

Finish Strong

We are 32 days away from a new year..a fresh start. Looking back over 2016 there were so many plans that we had for the year. We were pumped up and confident that we would accomplish every single goal on our vision board. This was going to be “our year”. But did it happen? Have you taken the time to re-evaluate your goals and plans for 2016 to see how many you actually achieved?

road-908176_192032 more days…

I have taken the time to look back and I am not pleased by what I see. Sure I’ve hit a few goals, gotten closer to achieving some, and then there are those that I have not touched at all. I’ve started and stopped this weight loss journey I don’t know how many times(currently on a hiatus), said that I was going to read more only to add more books to the untouched stack, declared that I would spend less and save more, only to blown my allowance on Target clearance time and time again. I have set my alarm to get up an hour earlier to spend some much-needed quiet time with my Father, only to hit he snooze button more times than I should. These are a just a few from my “short list” but trust me I could go on and on.

Again, we have 32 more days…

If you didn’t quite reach the mark, as I have not, we still have time. There is no need to wallow in the shoulda, coulda, woulda, now is the time for action. Once you have looked over your list, write a new one that outlines how you will achieve or get closer to achieving those untouched goals before the clock strikes 12 on January 1st. It’s so easy to develop the “forget it” attitude and declare that you will start fresh in the new year. Why not start now? It has been proven that it takes 21 days to develop a new habit. Guess what? We have 32 so there is no reason why we can’t get a jump-start to finishing this year strong!

Take it one step at a time. Set achievable smaller goals that will lead you to successfully obtain the larger ones. Lord knows I am dreading the thought of starting this weight loss journey again, but I’m determined to do it! Instead of trying to do it all at once, working out and diet, I’m going to work on my eating habits for the next 32 days. That way when I return to boot camp in January, I will have (hopefully, just being real lol) already crossed this “small goal” off my list and am able to tackle the next and eventually see the fruits of my labor!

This is one example of how I plan to get started, what’s yours? We have 32 more days to finish strong.

So now finish this, so that your eagerness in desiring it may be equaled by your completion of it, according to your ability.
~2 Corinthians 8:11 AMP

Peace & Blessings,

sig KT