It’s not a tick box exercise.

I was writing out my to-do list, adding little ticks next to the ones I had done, it made me feel quite good and got carried away, I was about to add to it Bible reading and prayer time, when I heard the Lord say to me “it’s not a tick box exercise”.

How many of us do this? Wake up and speak to the Lord as an exercise that just has to be done,  like cleaning the bathroom or making packed lunches for the kids. Each day is made up of small blocks of time along with a matching task list, we can quite easily slot God into that tick box exercise, that we are doing out of duty.

The fact is, it is not a duty, it’s a true honour. Spending time with God should be something I look forward to, like when I met my husband, my first love, getting butterflies in my tummy, an expectancy that I just can’t wait for, hanging on the every word, a pamper time but for my mind. Psalm 37:4 tells us to take delight in the Lord and He will give us the desires of our hearts. Wow! He does too, many a time I have been completely bowled over with what He has done in my life….. Even the small things, for example:

Last week I was preparing food for a party which quite frankly should by rights have stressed me right out, thankfully I leaned upon the Lord and said: “God, I can not do this on my own, you have got to help me!” A British buffet really isn’t a buffet without good old cheese and pineapple sticks. So there I was 9pm on a Friday night jabbing cubes of cheese and pineapple with cocktail sticks. When I got to the bottom of the last tin of pineapple chunks, I looked down to see just 2 pieces left and there on the chopping my board were 2 beautiful equal chunks of cheese!! I was totally in awe that Jesus cared so much about this party He even gave me equal pineapple chunks for my cheese……I know you have just read that and thought I’m crazy, but let me give you some context.

When I got to the bottom of the last tin of pineapple chunks, I looked down to see just 2 pieces left and there on the chopping my board were 2 beautiful equal chunks of cheese. If there had of been an odd number that would have annoyed me, I’m a bit OCD like that! I was totally in awe that Jesus cared so much about this party He even gave me equal pineapple chunks for my cheese……I know you have just read that and thought I’m crazy, but let me give you some context.

This party was a last minute decision, it was a surprise for a beautiful friend of mine, I had been in prayer a few weeks earlier and really felt on my heart to do this for her, the thing was there wasn’t really anyone available to help me organise it, so in the natural it should have been a complete burden. But, because I had bought it before the Lord and asked Him to intervene everything went wonderfully, and this was His way of showing me He was in it all. It was the confirmation that I needed to say everything was going to be ok, the food would be plentiful, the guests would turn up, and my friend would enjoy.

I delighted myself in Him, gave Him praise and was in wonder at His beautiful work, the party went smoothly, an enjoyable night had by all, the people turned up, my friend was totally surprised, cried tears of joy, the food went well, and I didn’t melt down at all, all because I went to the Lord with a humble heart and told Him exactly what I needed, He loves to answer our prayers, the little things are the things that are the most special to me, I pray that I never go a day and miss where He is at.

Open Doors

How do we know when or if to walk through a door of opportunity?


How do we know when or if to walk through a door of opportunity?

When I first came to know Jesus I had many plans, mainly for myself I admit, I was going to build a huge marketing agency and earn lots of money, well it wasn’t quite that shallow but all the same I had BIG plans.

I was stopped completely in my tracks by the Lord and I entered a period of stillness, at the time I thought this was laziness, all of my creative faculties started to shut down and I found that I couldn’t think, all I could do was turn to the word God and discover.

I soon started to discover Who I was, Why I was here, and What I needed to do, BUT, I had no idea how that fitted into my previous plans. So there I was, still wandering in the wilderness with no direction, no inspiration and no creativity.

I wasn’t listening! God asked me to start to delve into my old plans and compare them to the discoveries I had made about WHO He said I was, WHY I was here and WHAT I was sent to do.

I soon discovered a pattern, a very unique pattern. It was unique because this pattern was displayed in all I had done my whole life, from a tender age of nursery school right up to this present point in my life. Those business plans I had were NOT about making myself money, they were about helping others to achieve their goals, from the customers I served to the staff I had planned to employ, each element was about other people and how I could help them to achieve what they wanted.

Proverbs 16:9, tells us that In our hearts we plan our course, but the Lord establishes the steps.

No wonder there was a pattern, it wasn’t the actual industry, job, or physical task that would be my calling, it’s what that physical thing would enable me to do in the name of Jesus. I was sent to encourage, inspire and teach people that through Christ we can achieve all things!

Take delight in the LORD, and he will give you the desires of your heart.- Proverbs 37:4

Once I discovered this I soon started to recognise doors that began to open, not just in my business but at home, in my marriage, in my husband’s business, at church, with my friends, even this blog. I just had to be courageous enough to step out and say what I knew God wanted me to say or do what He wanted me to do.We just have to be bold enough and brave enough to walk through that open door.

Receiving this courage comes from renewing our minds with His Word, it’s there to give us confidence that in Him all things are possible. He tells us in John 10:10 I came that they may have life, and have it abundantly. He doesn’t want us to be miserable!

1 Corinthians 16:9 because a great door for effective work has opened to me, and there are many who oppose me.

The words above from Paul tell us that it won’t be a smooth ride, but irrespective of the opposition he faced, he continued to move on, continued to walk with God and live out what he knew in confidence the Lord wanted him to do.

Since these revelations, I’ve been so much more comfortable in my life with making decisions, and when I make those that are aligned with God’s will he confirms I’m on the right track with His wonderful favour, I feel peaceful and joyful inside and I have a consistent smile on my face. Life is just easier with God’s word in it. Life is just easier with God in it!

My prayer today is that anyone that may be struggling with their calling in life, or recognising God’s open doors, that they feel the spirit of God fall upon them to inspire action.

I pray, Father that each and every person that is questioning a decision right now, that they feel your presence, they hear your voice and you give them courage and confidence in you and your word.

I ask you, Father, to reveal to them their calling in life, give them desires in their hearts that won’t let go until they act upon them, and when they do Lord I ask for fulfilment, comfort and peace to outpour into their spirit.

Lord I pray that they seek your will and glorify your name by living a life filled with abundant joy.

In Jesus name, Amen.

 

 

 

 

Why do you have faith?

Someone once asked me how I can believe in God when the world is so messed up, this is why I do!

One of my characteristics is positivity,  I’m always looking on the bright side of life and I love to encourage others when I’m around someone that’s negative it has a tendency to frustrate me!

One day a conversation arose with a lady who was struggling one day to understand death and morbidity in the world, she said to me “If God so loves us, why do we have to see all this pain and suffering in the world?”

My answer to that is simple. 

We have faith, we believe in the unseen, we know that we are loved and made with great purpose despite what is going on in the world around us. The Bible tells us we are in the world not of the world, Jesus told us it wouldn’t be easy, but what is promised to us is eternal life, not only that, John 10:10 tells us he came so that we might live a life of abundance and joy, choosing to love Jesus and accept His gift of peace despite the outward circumstances helps me to deal with anything that the world throws at me.

God so loved the world that He gave! Jesus went to the cross for our sin, He didn’t just die, He was tortured, and He took the burden of all of our sin, how can I repay Him for that sacrifice?

Well, I can repay Him by accepting this gift. You wouldn’t receive a birthday present and leave it in it’s pretty wrapping paper, would you?

I’m going to take this gift with both hands, live my life boldly, courageously and tell everyone the good news, no matter what is happening in the world, having the peace of Jesus will pull us through it, and I don’t care who thinks I’m bonkers, hopefully, the way I live my life will help them to see just how much they need Jesus in theirs!

 

Walking in alignment with God.

Over the last six to seven months, many things have been manifesting in our family life, things that have been a real challenge, we had some big decisions to make, and if I’m honest I could have quite happily remained paralysed on occasions, stuck in the same old, the fear was just too much to face.

walking-inOver the last six to seven months, many things have been manifesting in our family life, things that have been a real challenge, we had some big decisions to make, and if I’m honest I could have quite happily remained paralysed on occasions, stuck in the same old, the fear was just too much to face.

Lucky for us we have a God that will deal with our fears head on when we seek His perfect Will for our lives.

Knowing there were changes to make we started to pray over the situations causing the challenges, we prayed long and hard for what seemed like forever! There were times I thought God wasn’t listening, there were times I thought He didn’t like me much, there were many moments I prayed with what my mom might call attitude, you know the stance – when your arms are folded, your bottom lip is sticking out and you have that tone in voice, the tone that says, I know you don’t want to answer my prayer and I know it’s for my own good but all the same I’m asking anyway, with an eye roll and a big TUT at the end?!

Despite sometimes wanting to give up we continued.

After around 5 months, we started to get answers, albeit they weren’t the ones we thought we would get. These answers were going to push us out of our comfort zone and were to have us confront fears we had carried with us most of our lives. In actual fact these answers had been there for some time, we just didn’t think they were from God, they seemed to make perfect sense but we thought they were of the flesh not of God. He was showing us that we had done the right thing and He wanted the best for us, He loved us and wanted us to flourish for the glory of His Kingdom.

I thought that a lot of the complications we had were a result of our own flesh and bad attitude, I thought that I had a hardened heart and it was my actions causing all of this discomfort. As a result, I was asking God to help me to change, when in actual fact what God wanted to do was to change the situation for us. Although this wasn’t going to be easy. It meant we had to do some things that would cause some discomfort, face our fears and be courageous.

One of the problems I’ve always had is thinking badly of myself, always blaming myself for things that go wrong, never really giving myself a break. Thankfully God doesn’t want that, he wants us to love ourselves just as he loves us. We are fearfully and wonderfully made, in His image, for a very unique purpose to bring glory to His Kingdom. This, in turn, gives us the ability to love others with His wonderful love and encouragement, and when we really seek His will for our lives He uncovers some miraculous things for our future, things we least expect – But, we have to action them.

Even though this time was tough and I could have quite easily turned my back on God, buried my head in the sand and left myself wide open for the enemy to take control, I chose to take back His territory and declare that in Jesus name I would walk on – No matter what!

Things can be hard, but as long as we continue to lean on our Father and rely not upon our own understanding all things will come together for good, no matter how awful it may seem we must trust him in all we do.

I’m very happy to report that is all now behind us and these situations are now testimonies we can use to encourage others as well as ourselves, we can hold on to them for the rest of our days and remind ourselves when struggles arise that He came through and took control, showed us what to do, and in our obedience, He has richly blessed us with many things to confirm we did the right thing.

Thank you, Lord, for your wonderful patience and understanding, Father, thank you, that despite our not listening, You always persevere and show us in your loving gentle way that all will be ok. Thank you, for always being there, and preparing the way for us despite our shortcomings and our disobedience, Lord thank you, for always waiting with your arms wide open for us to arrive, no matter how long that may take. In Jesus name, I pray that we will forever be aligned to your perfect will. Amen.

Daddy Can You Hear Me?

When I came to know Jesus, I journaled a lot and reflected on my life up to that point, I wondered where He had been and saw all the times He was calling me. I wrote this poem to kind of summarise my conclusion.

Daddy, can you hear me?

I call out, Can you hear my shout?

Lift me up on to your lap,

Free me from this trap!

 

Wrap Your arms tightly round,

I want to hear Your sound.

I want to please,

live a lifetime of ease,

Do all that you ask.

 

 “I can’t hear you!”

 

I do what I want,

No care or revere, 

Where are you? 

Are you even here?!

 

Mom and Dad, they were good,

I’m always in the way,

Making things difficult,

and going astray.

 

On a long nasty road,

addiction and theft,

Bullying, Emotion,

Self-sabotage and destruction!

 

“Can you hear me?!”

 

Daddy, you spoke! If only to provoke, the spirit inside of me.

Loving on those in a vulnerable state,

Finally, a job I didn’t hate,

You blessed me.


You poured out your blessing,

A brand-new beginning,

A home filled with love,

They went beyond and above,

A Family!

“I can see you!”

I Destroyed it again,

Evil prevailed.

I turned the wrong way,

To darkness…dismay!

 

Cold and alone,

in a pool of bile,

feeling helpless and vile,

I drank the first thing I could reach,

it was bleach.

Where are you?”

 

You saved me again but I still felt this pain.


“Can you hear me?”

I found love in this man,

his soul just as lost,

We lived together with his son but at what cost?

Drinking and violence,

I couldn’t cope with the silence,

Your strength came upon me to walk away.

 

You gave me independence,

my own home and recompense,

all those dark years washed away.

 

Freedom and fun,

I found another one,

he was perfect and sweet.

It ended too soon,

Left just me, it wasn’t to be.

“Can you hear me?

Along came another as lost as me,

a destructive, weak soul

with no life or goal,

drinking and sadness,

which turned into madness.

 

“Where are you? Help me!”


Your goodness shone through,

Strength came and I flew,

Into a life of success and joy!

A soul mate you sent,

To strengthen each other.

You were there all along,

Perfectly undercover.

 

When You saw fit,

You gave us a gift,

A beautiful baby boy.

A few months went by,

And now it was time,

To add to our family again.

 

A time of reflection,

And seeking perfection,

We discovered Your perfect love.

We always did wonder,

Who created the thunder,

and the storms of life that we had seen.

 

You lifted me up,

On to your lap,

Untangled the trap,

And showed me.

 

The purpose you gave,

Ridden of shame,

No longer slaves,

Perfectly made,

You showed us we could,

A love so perfect and good,

Freed from fear with a God to revere!

 

YOU HEARD ME!