A Reminder ~ Psalm 37

I love how you can read a passage in the Bible many times over the years but then when you read it again…it jumps off the page.

Psalm 37 was that way for me today. Have your read this passage lately?

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Our Lord reminds us that He is here for us. Life may be hard and it may not seem fair, but He will take care of us. He is our refuge.

3 Trust in the Lord and do good

4 Delight yourself in the Lord and he will give you the desires of your heart.

5 Commit your way to the Lord: trust in him and he will do this:

6 He will make your righteousness shine like the dawn,

7 Be still before the Lord and wait patiently for him

8 Refrain from anger and turn from wrath;

23 If the Lord delights in a man’s way, he makes his steps firm;

24 though he stumble, he will not fall, for the Lord upholds him with his hand.

39 The salvation of the righteous comes from the Lord; he is their stronghold in time of trouble.

These verses remind me of how I am to live. I am to trust my Father and follow His plan for my life. I can only do that if I spend time with Him and stay close to Him.

Sometimes fear keeps me from stepping out and doing what He wants me to do. I have to remember that as long as I am following Him, He will hold me up with His hand and help me.

My Father loves me and He loves you too! What desires has He put in your heart? Are you following His plan for your life?

Just some things to think about on this beautiful Sunday morning.

Blessings to You!
Melissa

Say What?

What a week! I really feel God working in my life and speaking to me…showing me He is faithful and that I can trust Him with all my heart.

I don’t know why I still have trouble trusting Him. As I look back over the past few years, He has been so loving and faithful. It happens though every time when things get tough and I just don’t know how we are going to get by financially, I start worrying and trying to find a solution.

Over the past few months I have been on a few interviews, felt really good about them, and then didn’t end up getting the job. As I look back, my focus was more on the extra money we would have and not the job itself. I have had to let go and just trust and that is very hard for me. He has always provided for us so why do I still doubt?

This past week I have focused more on Him and the blessings He has given us. I have spent more time thinking about the dreams He has put in my heart and asking Him what His plans are for me and my family. I was able to let go and feel a peace about our finances.

Well let me just tell you, I used our Bible study phrase of the week when we got a check in the mail this weekend…Say What? He had provided for our needs and then some!! My husband received his commission check for the month and it was much more than we ever expected. I stopped right then and there and thanked God. Then I felt guilty for not trusting Him like I should.

I can’t tell you that my doubt won’t creep in again and that I won’t worry, but I am a work in progress. My Bible study and the lessons that we are learning at church are helping me grow and change how I handle life.

I love that my Bible study and our lessons at church are emphasizing some of the same things. I can feel my Father speaking to me.

Some reminders from church this morning…

  • God hears – He hears our complaints and loves us anyway.
  • God is near – We have to slow down sometimes to feel His presence. Sometimes we work so hard to honor God that we miss His presence.
  • God provides – Provides everything we need, when we need it.
  • God tests – The purpose is so that we see our hearts and mature in our faith.
  • God is so generous – If you have God, what else do you really need?

Here are some notes from my study

  • Find a quiet place – Choose a quiet comfortable place where you won’t be interrupted or distracted.
  • Invite God to guide you – As you begin to review your day in God’s presence, ask Him to guide and teach you.
  • Begin with gratitude – Look back on your day–morning, afternoon and evening–and notice all the ways in which you experienced God’s goodness.
  • Look for leadings – Now go through your day again–morning, afternoon, and evening. You may want to imagine that Jesus is sitting with you while you watch a video replay of your day. When something you see catches your attention, push the “pause” button. Then ask Jesus for His guidance and insight.

It is all about spending time with Him, to feel His presence, trusting Him with everything, and letting Him guide us.

How about you? Did you have a Say What? moment this week? Are there things in your life that you need to let go of? I’d love to hear from you and pray for you!

Blessings to You,
Melissa

P31 OBS Blog Hop

Palms Up

Palms Up…a phrase that we have been using this week in our Proverbs 31 Study. I am having to learn to put my palms up when all I want to do is put my head down and go hide.

It has been one of THOSE weeks. You know the kind…busy, disappointing, lots of daily stuff going wrong. I struggled to just get through the week.

As I sit here in the quiet on Saturday morning, I finally get to spend some time reading, reflecting, and writing in my journal. I can now see that my enemy had some fun with me this week. Instead of focusing on God and spending time with Him, I let myself get caught up in the craziness of the first week of school, some disappointing news, and worry about our finances.

I want to say “Yes” to God…I want to live a life that is poured out for Him. He has put dreams in my heart and has a plan just for me. Why can’t I just do it?

Why? Because I still get scared and insecure. Yes, it is time to be honest. I am afraid I can’t do it. I am afraid I am not good enough. I am hoping this study will help me change that.

There are days when I feel like nothing can bring me down, that I can do anything that God asks me to do…then I let all those other thoughts start creeping in. I turn to verses that I know but the problem is do I really believe them. That is something I have been struggling with this week.

I “know” God loves me and will provide for me, but do I truly “believe” that?

I am holding on to this verse and I am going to work on truly believing…

This God–his way is perfect;the word of the LORD proves true; he is a shield for all those who take refuge in him. Psalm 18:30

I am going to focus on being thankful and keeping my Palms Up.

I love what Lysa wrote in Chapter 1…

Being a woman who says yes to God means making the choice to trust Him even when you can’t understand why He requires some of the things He does. It also means that once you’ve said yes to God, you refuse to turn back, even when things get hard.

I am publicly saying “YES”. I refuse to let the enemy have his way in my life. I refuse to quit. I will fight through the fear and insecurities and follow His plan for my life.

What about you? Are there things in your life keeping you from following His plan for you? Are you having a hard time keeping your Palms Up? I’d love to hear from you. We can pray for each other.

Blessings to You,
Melissa

P31 OBS Blog Hop

Broken {Five Minute Friday}

It’s Five Minute Friday! I am linking up again with our awesome host, Lisa-Jo. She gives us one word each week and asks us just to write for five minutes. Our word for this week…

BROKEN

The perfect word for me this week. I felt broken yesterday. I found out that I didn’t get the job I had interviewed for…actually had two interviews for.

A local private school contacted me about a technology position for this coming school year. It sounded like a good fit for me and I thought it would be a great school for my kids. I really thought I would be offered the job after the second interview. You can imagine how it felt when they contacted me yesterday and said that even though I was very qualified they had chosen another candidate. I felt like I had been punched in the stomach.

I have to admit that I did cry a little bit yesterday and had myself a pity party, but today is another day. God has blessed me with a good job. It doesn’t pay as well as I would like but you know what…my God always provides.

I didn’t realize until last night that this was the first time in 18 years that I had not been offered a job that I interviewed for. Wow! That made me stop and really think.

There is a reason I didn’t get that job…He must have better plans for me. So today I don’t feel broken…I feel blessed!

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How about you? Have you gone through times where things didn’t work out as you had planned? Can you look back now and see why?

Blessings to You,
Melissa

Click on the link below to read what others are writing this week…
Five Minute Friday

He’s Still Working On Me

When I think about how much I have changed over the past few years, I start singing the song “He’s still working on me”. Do you remember that song? My dad had it on cassette and loved to hear me sing it. I never realized how powerful the words were to this song until recently.

He’s still working on me
To make me what I need to be
It took him just a week to make the moon and stars
The sun and the earth and Jupiter and Mars
How loving and patient He must be
‘Cause He’s still workin’ on me

There really ought to be a sign upon my heart
Don’t judge him yet, there’s an unfinished part
But I’ll be better just according to His plan
Fashioned by the Master’s loving hands

In the mirror of His word
Reflections that I see
Makes me wonder why He never gave up on me
But He loves me as I am and helps me when I pray
Remember He’s the potter; I’m the clay

(written by Joel Hemphill)

I feel Him working on me each day…changing a little at a time…shaping me for His plans.

Change is not easy but it is necessary. He often requires us stepping out of our comfort zones, taking a leap of faith. This keeps us where we need to be…relying on Him. The dreams He has put in my heart would be impossible to do on my own, but I know I can do all things through Him (Philippians 4:13).

He supplies my strength, my hope, my joy, my peace…he supplies me with everything I need.

Since I made the decision to give Him control, my life has not been stable or comfortable. Walking away from a full-time position was very hard but He has been so faithful. We just get by some months, but we have a home, cars to drive, food to eat, and clothes to wear. I am thankful for everything He has blessed us with.

He has shown me that life is about so much more than things. It is about love and relationships. It is about learning and growing. It is about living the life He has planned for us.

I have always been a planner so letting go of our future was a hard transition for me. It took some hard times for me to give that up. Oh I still have my calendar (I’d be lost without it) but I am open to changes. I know that God’s plan is so much better than mine.

We are in a waiting period right now and patience is not something that comes to me naturally. I have gotten better but still have a ways to go.

There are some other job opportunities out there for me right now. I have applied and interviewed for two of them. I believe one job would be great for me and my family but I have struggled with the other one. It would be a great position with a better salary but one that would take a lot of time and effort on my part. It would be nice having more money coming in but my first ministry is to my family and I don’t want to do anything to jeopardize that. I am a wife and a mom and those two responsibilities come first. (I think I now have my answer about the second position.)

God is so good and I am proud of the changes I see in me. Giving Him control of my life though is not just something I did one day and it is done…it is a daily thing for me. I still struggle and I still make mistakes. The difference is that I know my gracious Father forgives me and will continue to help me. Each day I turn to Luke 9:23. I want to be His disciple and bring Him honor and glory.

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How about you…is He still working on you? Is it hard to turn it all over to Him? I’d love to hear from you.

Blessing to You,
Melissa

Ready to Live Uncomfortable

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WOW!! Ann’s latest post really hit me hard. You can see that God is using her, speaking through her words.

Living radical isn’t about where you live — it’s about how you love.

You are changing the world – when you are changing one person’s world.

Go ahead, give us that. We want that. We are the generations that are done living the comforts of this world and we’re ready to live uncomfortable because we’re ready for the comfort of God.

I don’t think it is a coincidence that she is writing about her time with Katie, the same Katie I am reading about in the book Anything by Jennie Allen.

I have been wrestling with my God-sized dream. Just not sure where He wants me and what He wants me to do next. Things are changing though. I hear him speaking to me, leading me.

I am working on plans and details for our Beautiful You conference. I thought it should be this Fall but not anymore. February seems like the right time. This is getting bigger than I ever imagined. He is using me and I am nervous but so very excited. I want to see lives changed in my county and beyond!

I can see my dream growing and going to places I had not imagined.

I am so thankful for all the women that bless me and inspire me with their words. I know that God placed them in my life. I have never met them, but they feel like friends. I hope to meet all of them one day.

I am also blessed to have those that I do know…those that help and support me.

My heart is beating fast and I am making a list of things to do and people to contact. I am so excited about what God is doing in me and through me!

I’d love to have your prayers as I pursue this dream. Please let me know how I can pray for you too.

One more thing to think about from Ann’s post…

We want clarity; God wants us to come closer. Life is always clear when you press closer and see it through the sheer love of God.

Blessing to You!
Melissa

 

Summertime at UGA

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I’m probably a little biased, but I work at one of the best schools in the world! Yep, I’m talking about the University of Georgia! I might feel this way since I grew up only 30 minutes away and ended up getting both of my degrees from here. I also had the privilege of traveling around and cheering on the Bulldogs with the Redcoat Band…I was one of the girls out there with a flag.

Our campus is buzzing with activity this week…orientation is going on for the new students. It is kind of quiet in our office so I have been able to get out and walk around (when it is not raining). I love our beautiful campus and I have so many memories here…some good, some not so good.

What a difference 20 years makes…I am such a different person than I was when I walked around this campus as a student. I wish I could impart some of my hard learned wisdom to the students here, but I am sure they would listen as well as I would have back then.

I would tell them to…

  • be confident in who they are and remember that they are God’s masterpiece.
  • find a career that makes them happy and gives them purpose…don’t just pick a career because of money or because others want them to.
  • read and study The Bible…have a close personal relationship with their Creator…only then will they be able to follow His plan for their life.
  • wait to find someone who loves you for you and wants the same things out of life…don’t ever settle.
  • dream God-sized Dreams!

Yes, life would have been different if I had taken this advice when I was young. I don’t wish I could go back though. My experiences have made me who I am and I am thankful that I have a loving, gracious, and patient Father.

How about you? What do you wish you could tell students just starting college? Were you already confident and following God’s plan? Are you just getting started…what do you think of this advice?

Blessings to You and Go Dawgs!!
Melissa

Listen {Five Minute Friday}

It’s Five Minute Friday! I am linking up again with our awesome host, Lisa-Jo. She gives us one word each week and asks us just to write for five minutes. Our word for this week…

LISTEN

Who do you listen to?

Do you listen to those negative comments in your mind? Does your self-worth come from what others say to you or about you?

I spent years trying to do and say the right things so that others would like me. My self-worth came from my job, how my kids acted, what we drove. I still listen sometimes to those negative thoughts that creep in but I am working on that. A good way to fight those thoughts is to remember who you are and whose you are…I am a daughter of the King!

I used to wonder why I didn’t hear God…why wasn’t He showing me His plan for my life. I realized that I wasn’t listening. I wasn’t spending time with Him so that He could speak to me and lead me. I also had to learn to give Him the control. I had wanted Him to show me which way to go and then get out of my way.

My day is so different when I start it off spending time with my Father. He speaks to me through His Word, through songs, and through others.

Right now I am waiting patiently and listening for what to do next in my life. There are other job opportunities for me but I want to make sure I am following His path for me. What may seem like a good idea to me could actually lead me away from what He has planned. So I will wait, pray, and listen.

Join us over at Lisa-Jo’s to see what others have to say about listening.
Five Minute Friday
Blessings to You,
Melissa

Another Year

Another year…42 in all. The years have passed way too fast!

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As I sit here and think about my life, I can truly say that I am now joyful…full of joy. I know that this kind of joy does not come from people or things. It comes from having a close relationship with God.

I was saved when I was a little girl but I haven’t always had a close relationship with Him. I am so thankful that He has changed me over the past few years. I am still a work in progress and I always will be. I know He has great plans for me and I look forward to seeing them unfold.

It has been a wonderful day so far…I have had my Spark…I did my Bible study…and now I am enjoying the quiet before my family gets up.

I am looking forward to spending time with my family today and all the hugs and kisses.

I pray today that however long God has me here that I will be a good example for my family and others. I want to be a light for Him and be used for His glory. I am thankful for all the blessings He has given to me and I am thankful for another birthday.

Blessings to You,
Melissa

Fall {Five-Minute Friday}

It’s Five Minute Friday! I am linking up again with our awesome host, Lisa-Jo. She gives us one word each week and asks us just to write for five minutes. Our word for this week…

FALL

My mind was already churning this morning about self-worth. This word makes me think about how many times we fall into Satan’s trap.

I think about the times I felt good or bad about myself just from the number of likes on a Facebook post or a post on my blog. I have caught myself thinking “Well he/she didn’t like my post so they must not like me anymore.” When I come to my senses, I realize that negative thoughts like that are just Satan’s way of keeping me from what God has in store for me.

Comparison, self-doubt, and jealousy keep us from our God-sized dreams. They keep us from stepping out and doing what God has created only for us to do. We have to remember that each of us was created unique and for a different purpose.

So when the negative thoughts start creeping in, remember this verse…
Pay careful attention to your own work,

Blessings to You,
Melissa

Check out what others are saying about the word Fall…Five Minute Friday