Chelsea Crockett

JESUS | BEAUTY | LIFESTYLE | FASHION

Tag: faith talk

Is God Waiting on You?

Do you ever feel like you are waiting on God? Waiting on Him to answer your prayers or give you a sign as to what to do next? What if…

Do you ever feel like you are waiting on God? Waiting on Him to answer your prayers or give you a sign as to what to do next? What if He was actually waiting on YOU?

I once had a friend who was sure she was destined for a certain career. When I asked her if she had been looking into the job requirements or specific employers, she said that if it was God’s will for her to go into this occupation, then He would open those doors. It is good to pray and seek God’s will for these sorts of things, but you also have to get out there and put things in motion instead of waiting for them to happen on their own.

Us young people really want to know what God’s will is for our lives. 1 Thessalonians 4:13 tells us “this is the will of God, your sanctification”. Unlucky for us, this does not give us much to go off of. The will of God is a hot topic and always will be. We just have to accept that we will never fully understand the “whys” and “whats” of life and instead focus on what we can do to go along with His plan and cooperate as much as He has given us the ability to. A lot of our success and failure in life depends on us. God gives us the ability to do these things – the freedom to try and fail. God is not going to do for you what you can do for yourself.

As a follower of Christ, what does the Lord want you to be responsible for in your life that tells Him that you can handle what He has given you? Have you proven that you are worthy of the blessings that are in store for you? Matthew 13:12 says “To those who listen to my teaching, more understanding will be given, and they will have an abundance of knowledge. But for those who are not listening, even what little understanding they have will be taken away from them.”

Pray for wisdom, because God isn’t going to always give you the answer or show you the clear path. Be disciplined with what you have been given. Accept when you are wrong and admit it to God. Be eager to learn, and refuse to live a passionless, half-hearted life. Come to grips with your strengths and weaknesses as this will make you mentally healthy and aware.

We all have needs on our life. Are yours not being met? Don’t blame God. He is waiting on you! He wants to meet your needs – you just have to ask. Just like James 4:2 says, “You do not have because you do not ask God.”

Chels

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When You Go Through Deep Waters…

“When you go through deep waters, I will be with you.” – Isaiah 43:2 Stress is ever-present. It is here to stay and will be part of our lives for…

“When you go through deep waters, I will be with you.” – Isaiah 43:2

Stress is ever-present. It is here to stay and will be part of our lives for the long haul. That is why God gave us verses like Isaiah 43:2. He is our stress reliever- forever.

I find so much comfort in the fact that no matter what the world tosses at me, He is protecting me. Little old me! How crazy is it that the God who created the world is looking out for each and every one of us individually?

Many times we will stress about our careers our whether the person we are dating is “the one.” We try and take it upon ourselves to control the outcome. I am so guilty of this. That is why God gave us Jeremiah 29:11. It says, “I know the plans I have for you, says the Lord, the are plans for good and not evil, to give you hope and a future.” We have to let go and let God do his thing. How? By growing in our faith and staying in His word.

In the lowest points of your life are when you are in the least control. That is when it is easiest to surrender to God and say “It’s all you. The full verse of Isaiah 43:2 says, “When you go through deep waters, I will be with you. When you go through rivers of difficulty, you will not drown. When you walk through the fire of oppression, you will not be burned up; the flames will not consume you.” We do not have to be afraid of failure because He will always be there to catch us.

With everything going on in the world, when evil is staring us in the face and knocking on our front door, it gives my heart peace knowing that the Lord still cares for us even in our brokenness. If God is for us, who can stand against us?

So, when you’re feeling like a mess of stress, know that you are eternally loved and that there is a master plan for your life. Know that with certainty.

Chels

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You Were Made to Move Mountains

“I tell you the truth, if you have faith as small as a mustard seed, you can say this to the mountain ‘move from here to there,’ and it will…

“I tell you the truth, if you have faith as small as a mustard seed, you can say this to the mountain ‘move from here to there,’ and it will move. Nothing will be impossible for you.” Matthew 17:20

Do you remember the story in the Bible about the father who begged Jesus to heal his son? His son was suffering through sickness, and he had tried everything. The father had even gone to the disciples, but they could not heal him. He fell at Jesus’ feet and asked for His help. Jesus’s response is not what his disciples were expecting. “And Jesus answered, “O faithless and twisted generation, how long am I to be with you? How long am I to bear with you? Bring him here to me. (Matthew 17:17)” I imagine this is similar to saying, “Do I have to do everything myself?”

The boy was brought to Jesus and was healed. Who was Jesus calling faithless and twisted? All of us. He was feeling exasperated with the sins of his people and their unbelief. Imagine what it must have been like for Jesus, who created each of these people and loves them, to know that not all of them believed or received Him. The people loved that he could do miracles and heal them, but as their Creator, the one who would ultimately pay the price for their sin, they rejected and even sometimes despised him. They were, indeed, faithless and twisted. It was hard for Him to bear.

Were the disciples really faithless? They had tried to cast out the boy’s sickness, after all. The problem was that their faith did not bring glory to God or show His power. That is why Jesus did not applaud their efforts. He explained to them that they had little faith. It was not because of God chose not to answer their prayers, the result was solely on their shoulders. Is this why some of our own prayers go unanswered?

No, not every unanswered prayer is a result of having little faith. Also, if our faith is lacking right now, it is possible to grow in faith. We do not have to continue to fail, and “little faith” is not a permanent state of living. In fact, remember Matthew 17:20 says “I tell you the truth, if you have faith as small as a mustard seed, you can say this to the mountain ‘move from here to there,’ and it will move. Nothing will be impossible for you.” Our lives can be transformed little by little. Is this verse hard for you to grasp? That nothing will be impossible for you? If you truly believed it, would that change the way you live?

We were made to move mountains. We were made to see impossible things happen through our faith. God uses our belief to tell others what He has done in our lives. When we have little faith, then we only show a little of His glory through us. We should not settle for this. We cannot be “lukewarm” Christians, we must be on fire for God.

Jesus knows that we can move mountains. Live like you know that nothing is impossible for Him.

Chels

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The W.O.R.D

I was browsing Pinterest the other day when I came across an awesome new way to study the Bible from TheFelcitybee.com called the “W.O.R.D” method. I am always searching for…

I was browsing Pinterest the other day when I came across an awesome new way to study the Bible from TheFelcitybee.com called the “W.O.R.D” method. I am always searching for new and fresh ways to dive into the Word. So, why not use the “W.O.R.D”?

  1. W: Write. While doing your daily Bible reading or studying, write down your daily verse or main point in a journal. Reading over the passage once you write it down will help you commit it to memory. Proverbs 3:1-3 says “…But let your heart keep my commands; for length of days and long life and peace they will add to you. Let not mercy and truth forsake you; Bind them around your neck, write them on the tablet of your heart.”
  2. O: Observe. Observe the keys to the passage you are reading and studying. This will help you understand what you are reading. One way to do this is to ask yourself the “five W’s” which are: Who (who is the author of the passage, who are they writing about, and who are they writing to), What (what type of story is this), When (when was the book written), Where (Where was the book written), and Why (why did the author write the book).
  3. R: Relevant. Ask yourself how this verse is relevant and applicable to your life today. How can you make this passage personal? How can you apply it to your daily life? Does this passage instruct, encourage, or correct? What changes in your life does this verse encourage you to make?
  4. D: Declare. Pray and declare the scripture over your life. In this last step, you pray the scripture that you have been studying over your life. Declare the changes you are going to make as a result of the verses you study. Pray that you are encouraged and learn as you strengthen your walk with the Lord.

As you go through the W.O.R.D method, keep your heart and your eyes open to what the Lord is trying to tell you. I am always a big fan of study methods like this one because they keep you focused and give you specific tasks. It is like a road map for studying the Bible!

Chels

 

 

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“Wear Love”

“And regardless of what else you put on, wear love.” – Colossians 3:14 What does it mean to “wear love”? To me, it says that no matter what, you should…

“And regardless of what else you put on, wear love.” – Colossians 3:14

What does it mean to “wear love”? To me, it says that no matter what, you should show love. Love is what holds everyone and everything together and is one way to display life’s goodness. In a world where it feels like, at any moment, any and everything could be going wrong, God’s word tells us that love has the power to make all things good and new.

The deeper I seek the Lord and the more often I pray that He makes less of me and more of Himself, the more He opens my eyes to the brokenness and hurt in this world. People’s hearts are breaking all around us. Sometimes you can just see it on their faces without even knowing the person. That is why we should wear love everywhere we go. 1 John 4:7-12 is a great scripture to drive this point home. It says “Dear friends, let us love one another, for love comes from God. Everyone who loves has been born of God and knows God. Whoever does not love does not know God, because God is love.  This is how God showed his love among us: He sent his one and only Son into the world that we might live through him. This is love: not that we loved God, but that he loved us and sent his Son as an atoning sacrifice for our sins. Dear friends, since God so loved us, we also ought to love one another. No one has ever seen God; but if we love one another, God lives in us and his love is made complete in us.”

To truly wear love means that we surrender our lives to the Lord because He is love. When we wear love people around us will be able to see His heart and His love displayed through us. Love is not just an emotion. It is a verb. It is an action. I want to love others and let my words reflect His goodness. If you have a friend who is going through a tough time, let them know that you love them. There is power in the words that we speak – and the more you see the hurt or brokenness in their hearts, the more we should tell them that we love them.

The world is hurting. Wear love, whether it be with your words, actions, or deeds. Love is the best accessory – it goes with everything!

 

Chels

 

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Stressed? Have some Scripture.

In times of transition and change, you can be sure that stress will show its ugly head. With it being back to school season, lots of changes are probably happening…

In times of transition and change, you can be sure that stress will show its ugly head. With it being back to school season, lots of changes are probably happening in your world. You may be moving away, changing schools, changing majors, changing roomates, changing jobs, or small changes may be adding up to one big ball of stress. When I feel like my world has gotten chaotic, I turn to the Bible to help me deal with it. Here are a few of my favorite stress-releiving scriptures.

  • James 1:2-4 – Consider it pure joy, my brothers and sisters, whenever you face trials of many kinds, because you know that the testing of your faith produces perseverance. Let perseverance finish its work so that you may be mature and complete, not lacking anything.
  • John 14:27 – Peace I leave with you; my peace I give you. I do not give to you as the world gives. Do not let your hearts be troubled and do not be afraid.
  • Romans 16:20 – The God of peace will soon crush Satan under your feet. The grace of our Lord Jesus be with you.
  • Colossians 3:15 – Let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts, since as members of one body you were called to peace. And be thankful.
  • Isaiah 40:31 – But those who hope in the Lord will renew their strength. They will soar on wings like eagles; they will run and not grow weary, they will walk and not be faint.
  • Proverbs 12:25: Anxiety weighs down the heart, but a kind word cheers it up.
  • Psalm 23:4:  Even though I walk through the darkest valley, I will fear no evil, for you are with me; your rod and your staff, they comfort me.
  • Romans 8:28: And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose.
  • Psalm 94:19: When anxiety was great within me, your consolation brought me joy.
  • 1 Corinthians 3:11 For no one can lay any foundation other than the one already laid, which is Jesus Christ.
  • Luke 21:19: Stand firm, and you will win life.
  • Psalm 118:5-6 When hard pressed, I cried to the Lord; He brought me into a spacious place. The Lord is with me; I will not be afraid. What can mere mortals do to me?

Hopefully these scriptures breathe relief, confidence, strength, and hopefulness into your heart as much as they do mine!

Chels

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Laziness: It’s a Spiritual Problem

Laziness is no stranger to most of us. Even the most productive people have little ways that they let themselves be lazy. I sometimes give myself little excuses to be…

Laziness is no stranger to most of us. Even the most productive people have little ways that they let themselves be lazy. I sometimes give myself little excuses to be lazy or procrastinate and justify it as ok. But, as I am learning, laziness is actually a spiritual problem. We don’t consciously decide to set aside the things we are responsible for or not use the gifts God has given us. We don’t decide to be lazy out of nowhere. So, why IS being lazy a spiritual problem?

Laziness offends God. Yes, offends him. Diligence is a spiritual discipline, and when we refuse to honor our responsibilities and chose our own pleasures over honoring God, we cannot expect the other areas of our lives to flourish. This isn’t God punishing us, it is our own fault. If we direct our spiritual focus towards our goals, that will positively affect our time management which will affect our attitude and accomplishments. When you align your goals with God, laziness has no room.

Also, we were made to work. Not to be workaholics, but to do good work for the glory of God.  When God says that we need a day of rest, don’t mistake rest for laziness. Rest rejuvenates us and revives us. Laziness, and avoiding our responsibilities and goals, does not bring us anywhere closer to the Lord. God is always working on our behalf, so we should also be working on His.

Are you lacking motivation or feeling restless or useless? Don’t just wait around for those feelings to flee, do something about it. Start doing a daily Bible study focusing on your areas of weakness. Pray that the Lord will use this time to reveal in you the things that need improvement. He will lead you through it. Consciously chose to do things that motivate you to avoid laziness like volunteering or becoming a mentor. Don’t give up when things get hard, because it is inevitable that we will all face tough times. As we are diligent in our obedience to work towards our goals and be more disciplined, our lives become so much more fulfilling. Remember this – “…let us not grow weary of doing good, for in due season we will reap, if we do not give up.” (Galatians 6:9). Your season is coming! Or, you may be in it right now. Don’t give up and let laziness rule your life! You’re stronger than that.

Chels

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Sometimes It’s Not About the Answer, It’s About the Journey

I saw this quote the other day and it really resonated with me. It said “Sometimes it isn’t about the answer to prayer, sometimes it is more about what you…

I saw this quote the other day and it really resonated with me. It said “Sometimes it isn’t about the answer to prayer, sometimes it is more about what you learn while you are waiting for the answer.” I couldn’t agree more. Sometimes, we focus so much on wanting an answer to our prayers that we miss what God is trying to teach us in the waiting.

Many times, he makes us wait years for answers. He makes us wait for healing that we have been about for years. He makes us wait to give us what our hearts desire, whether it be a spouse, a new job, a baby, a house, anything. He could answer our prayers that we have been praing for years in one tiny second. The longer they go unanswered, the more we question whether he even hears us. Maybe He is keeping you at the point you are at for a reason: to build your faith. God is not deaf to you prayers or blind to your needs. If he is making you wait, there is a good reason for it. So, what can we learn while we wait?

The first lesson is a lesson in humility. When I find myself being impatient, I remind myself that the Lord put me in this place. My life does not belong to myself, and God does not owe me anything. I am not the only person on the planet, and the earth does not revolve around me and my wants.

The second lesson is trust. You need to trust that God is 2 things: loving and powerful. The Lord is loving. He pours care and purpose into all He does. He is faithful to us now and will bring us blessings later. His timing is perfect. He owes us nothing, but has promised to give us all that we need. He is powerful. This means that nothing that is happening right now is a surprise to God. He is in charge and has everything under control. When we get anxious in our waiting, we must remember that.

In my life I have struggled with listening to God say “wait” and then going ahead and trying to find ways to accomplish my goals myself. This creates distance in our relationship with the Lord. He wants us to learn to put our demands to the side and wait. Some of the Bible’s greatest figures had to wait many many years for God’s promises to come to pass. Everything that happened in the waiting was used to prepare them for the blessings God had in store. We need to trust in His goodness today and His faithfulness tomorrow. Giving Him control brings our hearts closer to his.

Don’t give up just because you don’t see anything happening. “Wait on the Lord. Be courageous, and he will strengthen your heart. Wait on the Lord!” Psalm 27:14

Chels

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How to Pray for Those Who Have Hurt You

Why in the world would you want to pray for someone who has hurt you? When someone hurts me, that is definitely not my first reaction. We have all been…

Why in the world would you want to pray for someone who has hurt you? When someone hurts me, that is definitely not my first reaction. We have all been hurt, disrespected, shamed, disregarded, and taken advantage of. How does Jesus expect us to pray for the people who treat us this way?

We first need to realize that Jesus knows that it is difficult because He knows everything about us. You do not need to hide how you feel from Him. You can share everything with Him – your joys, concerns, disappointments, weaknesses, challenges, all of it. Think about all of the times you have hurt someone – both intentionally and unintentionally. Did you feel bad once you realized that you hurt them? Would it have comforted you to know that they were praying for you? Praying that Jesus forgives you and shows you the error of your ways? Pray that He grants you patience while he works in the heart of the other person. Pray that He gives you the grace to accept what has happened, and the perspective you need to move on. Pray that the other person is led to Him.

Praying for the person that hurt you allows you to see things through God’s eyes. You will be able to see them as a person who is much like you. You will also be able to see your own wrongdoing – whether it be not showing the other person grace, talking about them behind their back, or not forgiving them.

I am not saying any of this is easy. We can be so paralyzed by our feelings of hurt and frustration towards the other person that we cannot even think straight. In these situations, we should go to the Lord in prayer and ask for His comfort and thank him for his unconditional love. We should ask for His guidance through this incredibly tough time, and the strength to come out of it stronger.

We are all works in progress. The Lord does not expect us to easily forgive those who mistreat us – but He does expect us to forgive them in the end. The next time someone wrongs you, turn to Jesus first. He is there with comfort, healing, and understanding. All you have to do is ask for it. He knows a thing or two because He has seen a thing or two.

Chels

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He’s in the Waiting

“And so it was that he, having waited long and endured patiently, realized and obtained what God had promised.” Hebrews 6:15 Abraham and his wife Sarah waited a good long…

“And so it was that he, having waited long and endured patiently, realized and obtained what God had promised.” Hebrews 6:15

Abraham and his wife Sarah waited a good long time for their prayers for a child to be answered. I think we could all take a lesson in patience from those two.

Waiting for important emails, waiting for packages, waiting for the perfect job, perfect house, perfect partner, waiting for answers. The phrase “patiently waiting” seems like an impossible task. Life is full of waiting, so we might as well learn to wait well. Waiting allows us to look forward to the good things that are in store, and it is preparing you for what is to come. I think all of us could learn a few things about how to wait.

  1. Be practical: Use your waiting wisely! Keep your mind busy and it will make the time fly by. I know how it feels to feel paralyzed by nerves, worried and waiting to hear back about something life-changing. Don’t let your waiting make you distracted – let it motivate you to get things done! Keep your brain distracted and your hands busy. Volunteer in the community. Clean out your car and closet. Go to lunch with a friend you haven’t seen in a while.
  2. Be spiritual: Spiritually invest in both yourself and in others during this time. Trust that the Lord knows the perfect time table and you do not. Use these times of waiting to dive deeper into His word. Journal, pray, read, and use your time alone with Him to find meaning in the waiting. His timing is perfect.
  3. Be invested: Live in the moment. Enjoy the season of life that you are in. Are you at a job you don’t like and waiting to see if you were picked for the new job you applied for? Invest yourself in your current job. Do your very best and enjoy the little things that you will miss when you leave. Don’t miss the joys of life that are happening right in front of you, and don’t forget to enjoy today by worrying about tomorrow.
  4. Be advised: Find someone who has been in your shoes. They can help walk you through the waiting. Find ways to grow and be mentored and advised in whatever is to come. Having someone who has been there and who can relate can be such a relief. They can show you that there is light at the end of the tunnel.

Enjoy every step and every stage of the waiting. God is using this time to equip you for what is to come and is writing your story. Find Him in the waiting.

Chels

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Believe in What You Pray For

When you pray, do you believe that God will answer you? When you lift a problem, person or situation up to God, do you believe that He hears you? Do…

When you pray, do you believe that God will answer you? When you lift a problem, person or situation up to God, do you believe that He hears you? Do you believe that He can grant your request?

As Christians, we need to believe in what we pray for. The Bible tells us that we are not just to pray, but to pray believing. If God’s word specifically tells us to believe when we pray, then it goes without saying that sometimes we can pray and not believe. Not all prayers will bring results. God hears us when we believe that He has the power to answer us. And God will always answer us with one of three responses: yes, no, and wait.

James 1:6-7 says “But let him as in faith, nothing wavering. For he that wavers is like a wave of the sea driven with the wind and tossed. For let not that man think that he shall receive anything of the Lord.” Every religion in the world asks its followers to pray. But, it is only the Bible that requires us to believe what we pray. It requires that we actually trust God. That is how we maintain our relationship with Him. Mark 11:24 says “Therefore, I say unto you, whatever you desire, when you pray, believe that you receive them, and you shall have them.”

Believing in your prayer takes the emphasis off the prayer itself and puts it all on God. The focus is all about God and His faithfulness. In the Bible we are taught to not only rely on prayer alone but to rely on Him. Your faith and belief must be in your heart before the prayer comes out of your mouth.

When crisis strikes, bad things happen, or we want something, our first instinct should be to lift it up in prayer. For some of us, our answers come quickly, and God either tells us yes, no, or wait. Other times, the answer is unclear, so we wait. And wait. And wait. And during this waiting, we begin to lose faith. Did God hear me? Has he forgotten about me?

He does hear you and will never forget or forsake you. He may be teaching you a lesson on patience or may even be reminding you that you must believe in what you are praying. Maybe He wants you to set your worldly desires aside and be humbled. In these situations, I remember Romans 8:28 which says, “And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose.”

Everything happens for a reason. It is our job to believe that God will deliver us from our situation and bring us out stronger on the other side.

XOXO, Chels

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How to Start Reading the Bible

Sometimes I find myself staring at my Bible, knowing I want to study God’s word and be challenged by it, but not sure where to start. A few years ago,…

Sometimes I find myself staring at my Bible, knowing I want to study God’s word and be challenged by it, but not sure where to start. A few years ago, I figured I would start at the beginning and read Genesis. After a short time I lost interest with that approach. Typically I will find a good study and use that to guide my reading, but sometimes you just want to pick up the Bible and let it speak to you. The problem is, where do you start?

The Bible is so big that it can be overwhelming. Some Bible reading plans lose me because they assign so many chapters a day that it looks like too daunting of a task. Why isn’t reading the Bible easy all the time? Shouldn’t it be?

No. Reading the Bible does not require you to feel comfortable and know where to start. Yes, there are times when God guides you to the passage that you need to hear at a time in your life, but some/most of the time, reading the Bible is all about being open to hearing God’s truth. We can’t expect our Bibles to fall open to the right passage. But, we can start small. Dip your toes in, and then you will be able to full-on swan dive into the deep end. Do some research on the people in the Bible. See if there are stories that have lessons that you are interested in pursuing.

I did this and learned a ton about Esther and her obedience and diligence to God’s call for her life. She became a huge inspiration to me. Another story that I pursued was the story of the wandering Israelites. It reminded me of how much we need God. While dipping your toes into the Word, you may just fall deeply in love with it. If this is what you are searching for, then keep reading! Here are a few tips on how to start reading the Bible so it doesn’t collect dust on your shelf and instead becomes the source of your wisdom.

  1. Start with a short book of the Bible. Some of the best books are the shorter ones. Those small doses can pack in a lot of wisdom.
  2. Seek understanding each time you read. The Gospel is so full of beautiful life lessons that we need to really pay attention in order to comprehend them all. Try and gain a deeper understanding of God’s love and grace when you read. Whether you read one verse, one chapter, or a whole book, find the wisdom in it. It is truly life-changing.
  3. Don’t compare your walk with others. Your walk with Christ is completely different than your friend’s! Don’t let the comparison trap distract you from what God is trying to teach YOU. Give yourself the time and patience to figure out what reading the Bible looks like for you, because it may look completely different from what others are doing.

There are also tons of online resources that help you learn to study God’s word. I know that my love for the Bible has grown tremendously ever since I began spending time in it. I learn something new each time I go to read.

Remember, it is okay to feel overwhelmed with studying the Bible. All you have to do is dip your toes in. Eventually, you will be able to dive in and uncover God’s truths and promises for your life! They’re waiting for you.

Chels

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Give it to God and Go to Bed

“When I go to bed, I sleep in peace, because, Lord, you keep me safe. Psalm 4:8” Do your worries keep you up at night? Going to bed worried is…

“When I go to bed, I sleep in peace, because, Lord, you keep me safe. Psalm 4:8”

Do your worries keep you up at night? Going to bed worried is one of the worst feelings. Letting go of things is hard and putting your anxious thoughts aside can feel impossible. Worrying about the future, about finances, friendships, things that you did wrong and things that you could do better, all of these things threaten to rob us of sleep.

A great piece of advice that I was given is to “Give it to God and go to bed.” Every morning God gives you a new day, He allows the sun to shine, and He holds the world in His hands. God does everything for a purpose, and if He can run the world and knows all the hairs on your head, so He can definitely handle anything going on in your life. I struggle with anxious thoughts. My mind can get away from me and start to run wild. I just have to remind myself that He has never failed me before. God won’t fail you if you seek Him first.

Even if you aren’t going through a tough time, every day life brings enough “storms” of its own. Worry affects every part of your life and is not healthy. Worry drains you of energy, happiness, and even drains your time. What is keeping you up at night is what is important to you. But, a lot of times, those are things beyond your control.

As Christians we can have faith that God wants the best for us, His children. We might not know what His plan is or what it looks like exactly, but He says that someday it will be clear to us and it will bring us good, not do us harm. It is hard to trust in what we cannot see, but that is what we have to do. Don’t let your worry consume you or back you into a corner, and most of all, don’t let it steal your precious zzz’s.

Let’s face it, we all need to be told to give it to God and go to bed.

XOXO, Chels

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Leave It, Then See It

God’s timing is perfect. It is never early, and never late. We may not always agree with it, but it is divinely appointed and we can’t argue with it. Patience…

God’s timing is perfect. It is never early, and never late. We may not always agree with it, but it is divinely appointed and we can’t argue with it. Patience is something I, and I think most people, struggle with. We want things now, and we want them just the way we like them. Stress tells us that we need everything right this second and we need it to happen now. Faith tells us something different. Faith reminds us that everything will happen when God says that it will happen.

I saw a quote the other day that said “Those who leave everything in God’s hands will eventually see God’s hands in everything.” So, to shorten that quote, I say “Leave it, then see it.”

I am good at giving things to God. I cast my cares on Him. I share the anxieties of my heart and the worries on my mind with Him. I am good at giving things to Him. But, that doesn’t mean I am good at leaving them there. I have a tendency to want to take things back and do them my own way. I have never regretted giving anything to God. I have regretted taking things back.

Isaiah 41:9-10 says I took you from the ends of the earth, from its farthest corners I called you. I said, ‘You are my servant’; I have chosen you and have not rejected you. So do not fear, for I am with you; do not be dismayed, for I am your God. I will strengthen you and help you; I will uphold you with my righteous right hand.

This verse describes us as the Lord’s servants. We have been chosen by Him. We have no need to be afraid or dismayed because He strengthens and helps us. He loves us and upholds us. Why wouldn’t we leave everything in His hands?

What are you holding on – or trying to take back- from God? Is it career choices, financial struggles, health issues, relationship trials, etc.? Put your fears, doubts, questions and anxieties in the hands of the One who knows every hair on your head. He knows yesterday, today, and tomorrow. He can calm the seas with a single word. He gave sight to the blind. He made the lame to walk. What makes you think he can’t handle your worries?

I am still learning, and will be for a long time, how to trust the hands of the One who created the universe. He will give you peace and security. He will give you clarity. And, best of all, He will give you joy. Leaving everything in His hands means you can see His hands in everything.

XOXO, Chels

 

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When You Can’t See God’s Plan

I am a planner. I like to plan my days, and even months, out. I like to know that I have a solid agenda scheduled out. It helps me feel…

I am a planner. I like to plan my days, and even months, out. I like to know that I have a solid agenda scheduled out. It helps me feel like I have my life under control and, hopefully, prevents chaos. Nothing could possibly go wrong when you have your life planned out, right?

Wrong. The times when my plans didn’t turn out the way I had envisioned are the times when my faith is tested the most. These are also the times when I learn the most about myself – how I respond to crisis, how I react in uncomfortable situations, and how I recover. But why would God let this happen? Why would he disrupt your perfectly thought-out plans? Where is God in the midst of your situation?

The answer is simple to hear but difficult to understand: it is part of His plan. I recently went through a situation where I had planned months and months for something, and when the event finally happened, it was not what I thought it would be. I felt anxious, afraid, sad and confused. Why would God allow this? When I prayed about this and planned for it and searched for His will every step of the way? I am learning right along with you, friends.

James 1:2-3 was a verse quoted to me during my trial. It says “Consider it pure joy my brothers, when you face trials of many kinds, because you know that the testing of your faith develops perseverance.” I didn’t want to hear this at the time, but it was the truth. It is what I needed to hear. I am supposed to feel joy in the midst of my crippling anxiety? Yes. I am supposed to feel joy when I am paralyzed with fear? Yes. How? Think about the end result.

Focus on the end goal. Remember that nothing worth fighting for was ever easy to achieve. Those trials will make the end success even sweeter. Knowing you pushed past your weaknesses and overcame your doubts is euphoric. Being on the other side and seeing the lessons you learned and the new things you found out about yourself helps all of the pieces fall in place. Everything begins to make sense, and God’s purpose becomes clearer. When you are in the middle of the trial, facing it head on and feeling as though you will never see the light at the end of the tunnel, it can be hard to understand why God would make you go through what you are going through.

Don’t let your situation cloud your vision. Keep your eyes on God. Keep your mind on His purpose and trusting in His plan, even when you cannot see it. Scripture tells us that God’s plan is not meant to harm us but to give us hope for the future. God made us and He loves us. He wants to see us succeed. That doesn’t mean he is going to make it easy. Who knows, maybe you are going through this trial because God wants you to be able to relate to others going through the same thing. Maybe He wants to use you to minister to others.

How you choose to react in trying times is so important. Your choices can either bring glory to God and be a testimony of your faith, or they can harden people’s hearts and turn them away from Him. Find God in the hard times by choosing to trust Him and find your hope in Him, even when you cannot see the way. Turn your pain into praise. Your heart will be filled with peace. And, trust in His plan. It may not be easy, it may not be pretty, it may not be anything you envisioned it would be, but His plans are greater than anything we could come up with on our own.

XOXO, Chels

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Verses to Help You Be Wise With Your Words

I think I speak for most people when I say that when we are feeling irritated or short on patience, we can be harsh with our words. Often times, the…

I think I speak for most people when I say that when we are feeling irritated or short on patience, we can be harsh with our words. Often times, the people we love most are on the receiving end of the harshness. Sometimes, the words come out when we feel hurt because “you hurt me so I am going to hurt you.” As my pastor always says, hurting people hurt people.

As we get older and wiser, we learn how to keep our emotions more in check, which (hopefully) leads to controlling the words that come out of our mouths. I am not always good at this. Sometimes harshness slips through the cracks of my control and it often gets taken out on the people closest to me. This sucks the fun and joy right out of life and is not biblical. We are supposed to have self-control and be kind, which includes watching the words that come out of our mouths. If only it were as simple as it sounds. Only Jesus can help us with this, as James 3:8 would say “no human being can tame the tongue.” We have to give our words to God and guard our tongue. Here are some verses I pray when I am feeling particularly irritable or out of patience.

Colossians 4:6 – Let your conversation be always full of grace, seasoned with salt, so that you may know how to answer everyone.

Ephesians 4:29 –  Do not let any unwholesome talk come out of your mouths, but only what is helpful for building others up according to their needs, that it may benefit those who listen.

Romans 14:19 – Let us therefore make every effort to do what leads to peace and to mutual edification.

Praying these verses really helps me become slower to respond or say harsh words impulsively. Building others up instead of tearing them down or being critical is what we should be striving for. When you are in a moment of annoyance, instead of venting your frustrations using damaging words, keep in mind what impact your words could have. You can edify and encourage someone with your approach instead of embarrassing or hurting them.

I am nowhere near perfect at this. I am not guaranteeing you that if you pray these verses a few times a week or even daily that you will never say a harsh word impulsively again. But, I can tell you that it helps. Would you rather be known as someone who reacts to conflict or annoyance with severity, or with grace and kindness? I know which I would rather be.

Chels

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