Growth and Development

Self care is one of the buzz phrases used so often today. I am a firm believer in taking care of myself. In fact, to grow in any area, you must be able to reflect on who you are, where you are, and the direction you are going.

Just as a psychologist can provide a physical location that harbors feelings of safety and comfort, there should be a place where you can physically and mentally disconnect from the pressures of life and focus on what is important.

Oftentimes self-care is becomes distorted. We live in a society where we must personify perfection:

  • We wear makeup to cover the flaws in our skin, which gives the appearance of flawlessness.
  • We wear girdles and waist trainers to give the appearance of the perfect physical shape.
  • We wear high heels to give the appearance of confidence, beauty, and class.
  • We take countless pictures with our camera phones to capture the perfect pose to post on social media, but for what reason and for who?

Most would reply to this question by saying it is because they want to, but consider this: May be you saw someone else doing these things and thought it was cute or cool. I know when I saw my mom put on her heels, as a child I would go in her closet and pick out the shoes that I said would be mine when I became an adult. I would then ask if she would keep them so I could wear them. When Momma wore heels with her dress, she looked confident. Her legs looked more toned and lean. She just looked good!

Perhaps You saw someone do something and their appearance influenced you, insomuch that you decided to try out these ideals yourself, thinking it would lead to a better you or a better representation of you. 

The changes described are temporal. When I take off my platform wedges, I am still five-feet-six-inches tall, take it or leave it. When I unwrap that girdle from around my waist, sucking in the pounds acquired from being pregnant five times, everything falls back to its original shape. Honey, when I take off the eyeliner, my eyes return to their natural puffy state.

We do all this for a better representation of ourselves, but what have we done to our spirit to give a better representation of Jesus?

Anything Can Happen

What do you believe God for? Why do you believe God? If He could never grant the desires of your heart, would you still believe that He is in your best interest?

Just in case you forgot who HE is, God can do anything! Is it true that all things are possible? Yes! Only, if you believe.

Luke 1:37 (NKJV)
For with God nothing will be impossible.

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The life of Christian faith rests upon trusting God’s navigation system, which is the Holy Spirit (John 16:13). Abraham had to trust that the divine instruction of God, to offer Isaac as a sacrifice, was not only the voice of God but the will of God (Hebrews 11:17-19). Abraham’s act of faith led to trust God with all the details of his life. Faith is not easy. Faith grows as the believer matures and grows in relationship with Jesus. Even the disciples, who witnessed the early ministry of Jesus struggled with faith, insomuch that Jesus asked where their faith was (Luke 8:25).

God created heaven and earth in six days. Please tell me why he can’t change your life in one?

ANYTHING CAN HAPPEN!

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Arise, Shine!

Isaiah 60:1  (NIV)
“Arise, shine, for your light has come, and the glory of the Lord rises upon you!

It is Monday and most times, we would prefer to delay the rise and rest instead.

The scripture above is so powerful and I wanted to share it with you on today. Class is in session for a few moments.

First, the text does not say arise AND shine. The word “and” is a conjunction word. It is used to join words together. A comma is a punctuation mark and it separates words in a sentence.

A comma means you need to pause.

The word AND brings things together.

The definition of the word arise means to begin to exist; to begin at a source and shine means to give off light.

The use of the comma here is powerful, because sometimes we arise, but we do not shine. Sometimes we get up, but the oil is not flowing.

Let me make this clear. We give our lives to the Lord and then we just begin to exist. We lose our focus and our passion because of one not so good conversation, event, or experience. We lose our commitment to live a sacrificial life, well-pleasing to God that is holy and acceptable. Church is just church. Our light has somehow been dimmed. We have managed to allow the circumstances we face to dictate our praise, admiration, and faith.

Please do not forget who and where your source lies. God IS the source!

  • What are you arising to do?
  • What source will you begin at?
  • What source begins your day? Does prayer begin your day?
  • Do you begin your day with a heart of thanksgiving?
  • Do you worship the Lord in all His beauty and holiness?

Whose light are you giving off?

It’s time to arise.

The words Arise and Shine indicate a change from one position, to another. The good news is the change is good. Using them together suggests that there is an improved position. How do I know? Verse 2 in the same chapter says: For behold, the darkness shall cover the earth, and deep darkness the people; But the Lord will arise over you, And His glory will be seen upon you.

Verse 1 is not given as a suggestion. It’s not a thought, it is not advice or an opinion. Arise, shine is a command. It is a command which implies that it can be done. Your light is important.

Arise, shine!

  • Lives can be transformed
  • Sinners can become saints
  • The downcast can be uplifted
  • Failure turns to success
  • Weeping turns to joy
  • Rich become humble
  • Sick can be healed
  • Abnormal situations can become customary

Arise, shine!

  • Your children need to see and know who you belie and trust.
  • Your family need to see your light.
  • Your neighborhood needs to know that the angel of the Lord covers your block, because the glory of the Lord shines round about you!

Arise, shine. God’s glory rests upon His children.

Shining is not an option here. If you arise, you have to shine. Get off the pause button (the comma) and shine your light!

Stay lit!

Greater is He

When times are hard.

When bills are overdue.

When decisions are looming.

When choices have to be made.

When you feel unqualified.

When others have disqualified you.

When everything around you appears to be falling apart…

God is greater!

He is greater than anyone or anything.

He is greater than your heart.

He is even greater than your thoughts.

When we allow His greatness to work through us, we become great in Him!

You are great, because He is!

You are of God, little children, and have overcome them, because He who is in you is greater than he who is in the world. I John 4:4 NKJV

Get Back Up!

When we typically think of a fall or falling, it is not a good feeling. Can you imagine walking in to work, headed towards the escalator, with coffee in your hand and all of a sudden…

BOP!

Coffee spills all over the place. There’s no doubt that something will be sore on your body- even if it’s just your brain being sore from embarrassment. Lol.

You are looking around to see who notices, you have to pickup your belongings (if you were carrying anything) gather yourself, your thoughts, and get to your destination.

Not a good feeling, right?

How can a fall be good? When you are in a position of imbalance, unable to stand, you need assistance. This is even true spiritually.

  • It’s unfortunate that your heart was broken. It’s unfortunate that you loss your job.
  • It’s unfortunate that your child strayed from the morals and values you instilled.
  • It’s unfortunate that your life was threatened – but your life was not taken.

A fallen posture means that you needed some assistance to get up. When you are in a low place, you recognize that you cannot make it on your own. Your ears are no longer dull of hearing the word of God. Your heart is open to receive correction. Your mind recalls that person who once invited you to attend a church service with them. The veil of sin can be removed and your spiritual eye is wide open to see the works of the flesh, the works of the Spirit, and just how much your Father loves you to keep you even when you ignored Him.

“But God demonstrates His own love toward us, in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us.” Romans‬ ‭5:8‬ ‭NKJV‬‬

The fall prepares you for victory.

“The righteous may fall seven times but still get up, but the wicked will stumble into trouble.” Proverbs‬ ‭24:16‬ ‭CEB‬‬

A just man can fall 7 Times, but please don’t count me out. That 8th time, when I get up, I’m getting up in victory. I’m getting up in power. I’m getting up in strength; because the number 8 signifies resurrection and regeneration.

After you have fallen, do not stay there. GET UP!

Believe

All it takes is one…

One word.

One text.

One call.

One hug.

One conversation.

One opportunity.

Someone believed in you; someone is awaiting your motivation, encouragement, words of affirmation.

Someone is seeking for you to sow into them, that same message of hope that someone poured into you.

I’m here to get the party started…

  • You are great!
  • Because you are great, there is nothing but greatness within you.
  • If the people you associate with discount your ability, your greatness is not meant for them- get to stepping.

You do not have time to prove your greatness to the wrong audience. It is time to act.

Now what are you going to do?

“What do you mean, ‘If I can’?” Jesus asked. “Anything is possible if a person believes.” Mark‬ ‭9:23‬ ‭NLT‬‬

Suddenly

Suddenly – that is the word I woke up with in my spirit today.

Suddenly can mean:

  • Quickly or unexpectedly
  • Happening without warning or delay
  • Instantly , all of a sudden

Things can change in a day, in an hour, in a moment.

 The way can be made, the door can be opened, the healing can manifest, your child can surrender, strength can be renewed, forgiveness can be granted, wars can cease, fear can dissolve, the ruling can be overturned. God can do it SUDDENLY!

That is why we praise Him even while going through because instantly, things can change.

Are you ready for suddenly?

Thus Hezekiah rejoiced, and all the people, because of what God had prepared for the people, for it was done suddenly. (2 Chronicles 29:36)