Monthly Archives: July 2014

Fight with Peace

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Ok so you’ve read the title and it seems bizzare….when we promote peace we usually don’t fight do we??!?!

I’m going to be open and honest in this post…I feel like someone out there needs to hear this.

Before having Gabriel I rarely battled with a yucky 5 letter word…WORRY. I was carefree and didn’t really have a worry in the world. See, I grew up in a wonderful Christian home and I don’t recall having to “fight” many battles at all…I had a pretty awesome childhood and not “sheltered” from reality but not going through any major trials of my own. I saw my dad go through many health trials but I hadn’t faced anything “super mega” challenging in my own life…well except if my tan wasn’t dark enough or my hair wasn’t life enough 🙂 I had not honestly seen the “real world” until moving out, getting married and moving away from my sweet little hometown. When you do those three things…you really grow up…fast. (Especially once having children). When my precious Gabriel was born, it’s like I birthed something else into my life…WORRY! At first, it was just “normal” stuff like checking on him a billion times in the middle of the night to make sure he was breathing (because he was a preemie he didn’t wake up screaming to nurse like Natalie does). I do know now with having two children that your basic “motherhood worries” are normal and ease up some after you enter about month 3 or so of babies life…but continue all throughout their lives with different seasons and new worries. (they don’t have to control you though) But…mine wasn’t easing up in my life. It actually grew and grew and grew into fear. I began to think up scenarios of things that “could happen” but most likely never ever would. I became so full of fear I felt paralyzed. I felt stuck. I felt alone. I have been a Christian for most of my life and had never experienced anything like this. I had NO clue you could worry over someone so tiny and small so much. The responsiblity of being a mother is tremendous because all of a sudden you are responsible for someone else’s precious life. My husband was so sweet and supportive during this trial…always praying and encouraging me.(Even though I was probably driving him crazy…I was driving myself crazy haha) I spoke with my Dad multiple times as well and he told me I’m going to have to overcome this battle with the PEACE of God.  It’s that very statement that got me thinking…you overcome trials and battles by fighting back with the peace of God. I began fighting each thought and scenario.  2 Corinthians 10:5 “Casting down imaginations, and every high thing that exalts itself against the knowledge of God, and bringing into captivity every thought to the obedience of Christ”

This verse became my constant meditation. I had it written all over the house. I had it pop up as a reminder on my cell phone, I memorized it, I spoke it all throughout the day. See the enemy LOVES to get into your mind and fill it with junk. It becomes a battle…a constant one. A reoccurring one. I also began reading “Battlefield of the Mind” by Joyce Meyers…which is an incredible book for anyone to read. It helps you see that God is on our side and He is fighting for us all along…we just have to SUBMIT our minds and OPEN them to allow him to.

God doesn’t desire us to worry…actually fear=doubt. And this is the lesson that God taught me in all of this. I let the enemy STEAL my joy of a having my sweet Gabriel. I had LET FEAR IN. I had allowed my thoughts to run wild and far away from God’s word. I wasn’t keeping them in order or submitting them to Him. I was taking things into my own hands…and well we see where that got me..on my knees! See I am (with the Holy Spirit) the MASTER of my mind. I can either think on things of this world (doubt, fear, insecurities…) or I can think on things ABOVE (joy, peace, love, kindness, JESUS). Colossians 3:2 Set your minds on things above, not on earthly things. The awesome thing about our Father is that HE is real. He doesn’t beat around the bush…He says it like it is…and I adore that! He desires us to be the same way with Him. He already knows the thoughts we are having…so speak them to Him and say something like this “Father, I don’t have time to think about this mess…I’m so fed up with the constant chain of thoughts…I’m tired of my life being ran by the what-if’s. I’m just honestly fed up with my mind..please Father take these thoughts away.” And you know what??? The thoughts don’t disappear like you’ve taken a “magic pill”. They are STILL there. It’s kind of like a war. Just because a solider is standing there…doesn’t make the enemy disappear….the soilder has to FIGHT him. Speaking your thoughts to God is step one of the battle. You are now allowing and asking God to fight them for you. Step two is consistently renewing your mind! It’s a multiple time a day event for me. It can be as simple as saying “God I give my thoughts to you…help me to honor you with each thought” A simple way that I began “retraining” my mind was speaking little things like this throughout the day… “Father I love you.” “Jesus give me peace” “Father I’m so thankful for You” “Father You are holy” “Jesus I know you are the beginning and the end” “God I know that no weapon formed against me shall prosper”…I would mix different thoughts of thankfulness and praise…and as I began thinking on those things, I didn’t have time to meditate on silly unrealistic worries. As I meditated on Christ…the worries started melting away. See, the battle was being won! (In my illustration of the war….the soilder was getting rid of the enemy one by one by fighting them) The victory was here. I with Christ on my side had WON my mind…my battle. We FOUGHT WITH PEACE..together!

My challenge for you today is to first, open your lives to allow our Father to fight the battle with and for you. Secondly, renew your mind daily! Take every thought captive and if it doesn’t line up with the Word of God…tell it to get OUT. I still every single day (sometimes multiple times) give my mind to Christ…because worry is a dirty little thing that tries to creep in over and over again. But now that I’ve won a big battle with Christ…the little “fusses” are much easier to overcome. I’ll leave you with this verse.

Philippians 4:6-7 Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication, with thanksgiving, let your requests be made known to God; 7 and the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus.

xoxo,

Jess

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Picture Perfect World

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A friend of mine recently told me I had a “picture perfect world”… While I do feel extremely blessed, my “world” is not perfect! One of my hobbies…(as most of you can probably tell) is capturing moments of my little ones. While it may seem like I post and take MANY pictures..they are only 3-4 photo shots out of a possible 7637846287 moments…in a day. The 3-4 photos you see of my “world” are the highlights of my day. You see sweet pictures of Gabriel and Natalie laying on the floor hugging each other. You see a #selfie where I look all put together. You see the picture of my clean kitchen. You see the picture of a creative toddler craft. You see the picture of my toddler with all smiles. You see the picture of my delicious meal. You see the pictures of me gazing into the love of my life’s eyes. You see the pictures of my…highlights. While I was thinking of the pictures I post..yes we do have many highlights but we are REAL and we have REALLY hard days and moments too! What you don’t see me post is the photoshot of Gabriel crying because he wants his sister to take a nap so he can have Mommy all to himself. You don’t see the #selfie of me on the day that it’s 5 pm and I haven’t had a shower yet  and the “gourmet dinner” is burning because my precious newborn is wanting to nurse for the (what seems like) 100th time in 3 hours all while my toddler is screaming “coooookiessss” because he wants them before dinner. You don’t see the pictures where my amazing husband comes home from work an hour late (because he had to deal with a customer complaint) and dumps a big pile of stuff that’s accumulated in his car over the past few days (yes sometimes that includes a sippy cup of milk that Gabriel hid in the car..ew) on my CLEAN floors!

This post is for all the real mama’s out there. When my friend mentioned I had a “picture perfect world” it hit me…I never want anyone to think that of me at all. When people think of me…I want them to think of a mother that lives in the real world….and the real world has issues. I have been through a lot at a young age and I can say I am very thankful for the different seasons I have experienced. From a miscarriage…to the days where I could cry if one more goldfish gets crumbled in the carpet….I am a real mom…..Matthew 11:28 “Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest.

I am a real mom that has to rely on God’s grace. God doesn’t intend for us to walk this journey alone. He never expects us to have a “picture perfect world”. He never asked for each snapshot of our lives to be all giggles and grins. What He does expect of us, is to rest in Him. He knew before we began our journey as mother’s or whatever you are… that there were going to be bumps in the road. He knew that we couldn’t handle every situation alone. He already knew that as mom’s we were going to run to our closet and scream when we walk into the bathroom to find our toilets stuffed with everything it shouldn’t be…and it’s ok! He created us and knew we weren’t perfect. That’s why HE died on the cross for us. That’s why HE gave His life for us…so we don’t have to walk alone. What amazing love He has for us..and His desire is for us to bring that same love to the “world” around us. As a mom, I have learned that patience and grace are key. Thinking back on the past 21 years I’ve had a relationship with Christ…WOW how patient has He been with me??? I fail Him each and every day and He is still there with His gracious arms open wide.

My challenge for you today is to be patient and have grace for not only your children…but yourself. As a mom..it’s easy to be so hard on yourself and think you must “maintain” the 3-4 highlight shots of your day but that’s impossible. Feed on God’s word each morning because you can’t give out what you don’t have. (I’m speaking to myself as well) How can we expect our children to follow what we say when we aren’t following what our Father says? Joshua 1:8 Keep this Book of the Law always on your lips; meditate on it day and night, so that you may be careful to do everything written in it. Then you will be prosperous and successful. John 10:10 “I have come so that they may have life…and have it to the FULL”. I don’t know about you but I want to have a “FULL” life in Christ…and a “FULL” life to me is filled with ups, downs, ins and outs but is steady when “IN CHRIST”.

xoxo,

Jess