This new season in my life has brought me to a place of finding my new identity. I have been a stay at home mom for twelve years and my last child went off to kindergarten a week ago. I can’t describe in words the emotions I felt as my baby boy went off to school. My four kids don’t need me now like they used to but have different needs, as one is in 7th, 5th, 2nd and now kindergarten. So they are in different stages and don’t depend on mom and dad as much as before. I feel my identity has changed and I am now trying to figure out what I want to be when I grow up. This season has been so hard for me because you raise your kids and have invested so much time and energy into them that in the midst of it you forget what your identity is and what God created you to be. Then I read 1 Colossians 3:1-2, “Since then, you have been raised with Christ, set your heart on the things above, where Christ is, seated at the right hand of God. Set your mind on things above, not on earthly things.” This verse spoke to me. As a child of God my focus is not on the worldly things but on heavenly things. I have put so much focus on my family that at times I miss what God is calling me to do beyond that. As I have reflected over the past week, God has called me to much bigger things than raising my family and has instilled in me passions that are tugging at my heart. I have been listening to His voice and praying and He has shown me opportunities. The more I am praying over these things the more God has opened doors for me to be a part of ministries that deal with human trafficking and working with single moms. I realize after following His voice He is showing me my new identity in Him and the Kingdom work He has set in front of me. Finding my new identity has been hard because I had to cut the umbilical cord to my kids and let God grow and shape them when they are at school and anywhere. It doesn’t change the mom and wife I am but I am learning more than that and God created me to be a “light” in this dark world. Through listening to God and prayer it has helped to direct my steps and know His will for me and that He has chosen me for such a time is this. So remember your identity is in HIM and that comes first in who you are. 1 Peter 2:9 says it wonderfully, “You are a chosen people, a royal priesthood, holy nation, God’s special possession, that you may declare the praises of Him who called you out of darkness in to his wonderful light.”
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We can typically separate people into two distinct categories. Those that go after life full speed ahead, and those that sit back and take life as it comes at them. I am definitely one of the former. Every day of my life I am looking to the future, to whatever the “next” thing is. I live in a constant state of analysis, which includes where I’ve been, where I am now, and where I plan on going. Very little takes me by surprise as I’m on the front end of my own journey. Compare that to people who wait for doors to open, sit back and let opportunities approach them, and take everything one day at a time. Honestly I think there is merit in both. For the “go-getters” as they call us, we are moving and shaking and making things happen. We’re not sitting back and waiting on anyone to do anything for us, we’re willing to put ourselves out there in order to get it. For the more laid back crew, they tend to take their time, weigh options, and allow time to do what it needs to and bring whatever it will bring to them. They tend to be more content and less stressed in comparison to those of us that can’t seem to just go sit down somewhere.
There are also some negatives to both sides. For those that are grabbing life by the horns, there is more room for anxiety, restlessness, and discontentment. For those looking for life to grab them, they can be unfulfilled, stagnant and so on. Wherever you find yourself one thing is certain, we are all subject to time and chance. Ecclesiastes 9:11, “Again I saw that under the sun the race is not to the swift, nor the battle to the strong, nor bread to the wise, nor riches to the intelligent, nor favor to those with knowledge, but time and chance happen to them all.” You can be the laid-back, super intelligent strategist, the one trying to run as fast as you possibly can or a combination of both. Either way you’re subject to time and chance. Think about it like this, it doesn’t matter how fast you run if the opportunity isn’t open and available yet. It makes no difference how much you sit back and plan and wait, you’ll eventually have to show up in a moment where chance presents itself. However you approach life, one thing remains constant, you’ll still have to trust God for His perfect timing and for the chance to fully evolve into who He has called you to be. Whether anxious or patient, stay your course, don’t drop out of the race and one day you’ll finally get a chance, and it will be time.
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Relaxing this summer is something I am trying to focus on and allow God to do His will for my life and not control and plan everything. I have a hard time relaxing as my family of six keep me busy with all of their activities. I feel the need to keep up with everything to not let anyone I love down. But as I am doing that I realize I am letting God down by giving Him my leftovers and not resting at His feet. This reminds of the story of Mary and Martha in Luke 10:38-42. Martha was distracted and kept busy with her tasks at hand while Jesus was visiting and Mary chose to sit at the Lord’s feet and listen and relax with Him. The Lord says in verse 41 and 42, “Martha, Martha,” the Lord answered, “you are worried and upset about many things, but few things are needed or indeed only one. Mary has chosen what is better, and it will not be taken away from her.” This story has so much meaning as we live out our lives because we have the choice to relax at Jesus’ feet or get caught up in the busyness of life. If we continue to be caught up in the world we miss the opportunity to be with Him. This summer God is reminding me to not miss out on spending time with Him and having that be part of my day and giving Him my attention first. When I do that it has caused my days to be peaceful and be able to rest in His presence and recognize Him each day. I love the verse I have in my living room as a reminder, “Be still, and know that I am God.” (Psalm 46:10) Finding the stillness in our everyday and seeking His presence will help us relax this summer. Are you ready to relax with Him this summer? Put on your sunglasses and let’s bask in the SON
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Our minds are good at playing tricks on us! I know for me my mind can really dictate how I live. Our mind is a battleground that we need to constantly fight for what is right and connect to God. You can have a broken mind and not be able to hear God and what He is telling you. That broken mind will lose the battle, as it will draw you farther from God. Therefore your mind is powerful and whatever is consuming your mind will consume how you behave and fall into sin. Because the battle for sin will always start in your mind and how you think will cause you to act that sin out. This battle of your mind is a spiritual fight because we are fighting against our flesh and what the world says and what God says. God says think on these things in Philippians 4:8, “Finally believers, whatever is true, honorable, worthy of respect, whatever is right, pure, wholesome, lovely, admirable, good and brings peace, think continually on these things. We need to take our thoughts captive by thinking on those things and being obedient to God’s word.
The most important things we can do to win the battle of our mind are to guard, protect and renew our mind. To help us guard and protect our thoughts we should line those thoughts up to God’s word. His truth will set us free and renew our mind. Renewing of our mind will bring peace and strength. What has helped me is to establish healthy boundaries for my mind. These boundaries are established by discerning what is put into my mind. Television, books, social media, technology and people can play a big part in that. If I choose things that are garbage for my mind, then I am going to spew garbage from my mouth and actions. I have to choose what is healthy for me to watch and look at and who I surround myself with. The people that I allow to speak into my life are very essential as those people around you can use words that can either build you up or tear you down. Therefore choose wisely who you let speak into your life. Allow Godly wisdom to be spoken into you and not the lies of Satan that will tear you down.
What we put in our mind has a huge and lasting impact on how we think and act. The Bible tells us, “Set your minds on things above, not on earthly things” Colossians 3:2. To fix our minds on Him, which is the right things and we will have a healthy mind not a mind filled with this world. God’s desire is for us to live a holy life that is focused on Him to give Him the glory. Our minds should desire Godly things and our actions would follow that. Prayer and mediating on God’s word is the most powerful way to win the battle of your mind. If you are struggling in that area and need prayer, please let us know we are here for you and want to help you obtain victory in this battleground of your mind!
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