Tag: woman of god

Seeing The Beauty In Your Storm

We often associate storms with destruction, but that’s not always the case. Sometimes, a rainstorm passes through and leaves behind lush green grass, well-watered plants, and fresher air. Often, the darkness clears to reveal a beautiful rainbow…a sign of hope and a reminder of God’s covenant with us (Genesis 9:16).

Let’s look at John 15:2, “He cuts off every branch in me that bears no fruit, while every branch that does bear fruit, he prunes so that it will be even more fruitful.”

Just as the gardener prunes his fruit tree, God will prune us through various circumstances and storms. This changing, molding, shaping and refining of ourselves can be painful and life-changing, but if we trust in God’s work, then we will grow more deeply in our faith and relationship with Him, and increase our capacity to bear more fruit.

Isaiah 43:19, “See, I am doing a new thing! Now it springs up; do you not perceive it? I am making a way in the wilderness and streams in the wasteland.”

Notice where the scripture reads, “…I am doing a new thing! Now it springs up; do you not perceive it?”

In the middle of our dark moments, we are often so focused on our struggle that we can miss the beauty of the ‘new thing’ — the new work — God is bringing about or calling us toward. Like a new sprout that unfolds in the garden after the rain passes, God is constantly at work creating beauty out of what appears to be ashes, making a way where there appears to be no way.

What storm are you experiencing right now?

Can you see God doing a new work in your life?

Please reach out if you would like to learn more about the step forward process, spiritual disciplines, or the benefits of personal coaching. Thank you for sharing your faith journey with us!

Standing Inside the Storm

Just over two weeks ago, I fell silent as the days became a blur of room-spinning nausea, head pressure and sinus unhappiness. This vertigo storm was one I had never experienced before. After one trip to the ER, lots of medication, the power of prayer, and days of healing, I’m on the mend.

About one week into my unexpected storm, I began climbing out of the vortex and started catching up on social media. In minutes, I became aware that there was an even larger storm reaching across our entire nation, affecting hearts and lives forever.

This hurricane of racial tension, hatred, violence, and murder had been brewing for a long time, and unlike other storms, this one affects each one of us regardless of geographic location. This storm hands us a mirror to hold up so we can visually see, and both intellectually and emotionally understand where we are on the ignorance, apathy, and tolerance scales. Each one of us has an individual responsibility in this storm.

My heart is wrecked for my brothers and sisters.

God created us in His image (Genesis 1:27), and with His expression of love and creativity, every single one of us has been given special gifting and a purpose.

To my sisters across race and culture, please receive this: God loves you. God sees you. God hears you. You have a beautiful purpose.

If you’re facing a storm, need help understanding your purpose, or want to go deeper in your relationship with God, we’re here for you through conversation, coaching and prayer.

 

Walking in the Brilliant Unexpected

When I was a little girl, I looked forward to the daily mail delivery. I grew up in a very small 2-bedroom bungalow that had both a mail slot and a vintage milk chute. Everyday, the mail would come sliding through the little door, spilling to the floor if we didn’t catch it in time. Sometimes, the mail would be left in the milk chute instead, where it sat stacked neatly until we retrieved it (which was much less eventful than watching the mail fly through the little door on the wall).

The daily mail delivery was a source of such excitement even though it wasn’t addressed to me, but I loved seeing all the mundane bills, advertisements, catalogs, magazines, and occasional greeting cards. I enjoyed the different sized envelopes, noticing the address (labeled or handwritten?) —and, once in a while, I was allowed to read the contents inside!

As a grown-up living in a neighborhood with cluster mailboxes, retrieving the mail is a lot less exciting, but even now, I still enjoy discovering what’s in the box. For me, the excitement is in the possibility. In this almost boring daily ritual, I expect the unexpected. Every moment holds the possibility of brilliance.

Webster’s dictionary defines the word brilliant as “very bright, glittering; striking, distinctive; very good, excellent.”

When we come expectantly to find God…transparently…with all our heart, He always shows himself (Jeremiah 29:13-14). It is God’s brilliant love – His very bright, glittering, striking, distinctive, very good, excellent love for us that creates all these unexpected gifts for us like the painted sky, an endlessly breathtaking horizon, a rainbow that appears out of nowhere, a phone call from a long lost friend, or even a surprise greeting in the mail.

What about you?

To step out of the comfort zone of your boat and live your mission with your eyes fixed on God and what He’s asking you to do, is to walk in the brilliant unexpected – drawing closer to Him with every step of your spiritual journey as He continues to reveal deeper truths about His love for you.

Are you walking in the brilliant unexpected?

Comment below or message us to find out how to apply step forward to your life or how a coaching relationship can help you on your faith journey.

Start Walking in Courageous Change

We are more accessible and wired than ever before — in fact, some of you are wired on caffeine and carbs right now trying to read this post.

You know it’s true and I’m with you.

How is all of this accessibility helping you stay on task with what God is asking you to do? Are you walking on the water with your eyes fixed on Jesus, totally slaying it? Or have you started to sink?

At the beginning of quarantine, I dreamed of all the projects I was going to get done, resulting in a veritable cornucopia of happiness and creativity — because, after all, everyone would be home now, no drive time, all of the hours of the day available, etc.

That dream quickly died as I grew more stressed with each passing second, trying to cram in all the things I thought I could — or should — accomplish.

Even though my kids are fairly efficient at their online school work, I’m still needed all the time… breakfasts and lunches (cleaning up said breakfasts and lunches), providing endless snacks, answering questions, issuing a 100 million hugs (pretty awesome!), cramming in household chores, attending various online classes and newly added meetings, and attending to creative ventures, etc.

By way of a coaching conversation, I came to the realization that I had less hours in my day than ever before.

What? How could that be possible when I kept hearing media messages like, “Now that we’re all quarantined with extra time on our hands…there’s this great opportunity…sign up for this group…watch this webinar…” etc.

How could I be home all day and have less hours?

I sat down and took a hard look at my life (insert harsh bucket of ice water):

  • The daily task schedule (breakfast, lunch, etc.).
  • Household chores that needed to be completed to stay afloat (laundry, financials, etc.).
  • Project work that I either needed to work on or wanted to work on, including immediate work, creative projects, and dream ventures.

Courageous changes were needed quickly, and that last bullet point was where things really got dicey. I am a highly creative person who doesn’t have a lot of hobbies per se. All the stuff I love to do, I’m pretty much doing in one capacity or another. So, having to whittle these projects down into something more manageable resulted in A LOT of distress.

As my dream of endless hours of creativity and happiness began to die a painful death, a new, even brighter picture of a less chaotic life began to emerge. I could see hours of relaxation and bunnies running through the field backed by a soundtrack of swelling strings…

OK, not exactly like that. Just kidding!

But seriously, I care about the projects I work on and the people associated with those projects. It was really difficult to have to put the brakes on some things I was really looking forward to spending time on. Not only did I have to prioritize for my own mental health, I also needed to make space to stay focused on the stuff God really wanted me to work on NOW, in the present. Let me emphasize that:

Making courageous changes creates space to stay focused on the stuff God really wants me to work on now, in the present.

Do you remember the old saying, “the devil is in the details”?

Those little details of being extra busy, and being constantly inconvenienced or frustrated can keep you from realizing the blessing God has for you when you focus on Him, and the blessing that others will receive through the work He’s given you to do.

This quarantine-constantly-plugged-in environment will steal away opportunities for the spiritual practices of rest and time with God, and the focus you need in order to stay on task with what God is asking of you.

Let’s look at 1 Corinthians 16:13, “Be on your guard; stand firm in the faith; be courageous; be strong.”

If my story resonates with you and you’re trying to get through the chaos, try applying that Scripture to your life this way:

Be on your guard against the enemy of busyness. Stand firm in faith and belief in the work God is doing in your life and the path He has called you to. Be courageous; be strong, knowing that it’s okay to say ‘no’ to projects that don’t support the overall mission you are called to.

  • What is God asking you to focus on?
  • What courageous changes do you need to make to create space in your schedule?
  • What strategies can you use to become less busy?

Comment below or message us to find out about the benefits of a coaching relationship and how it can help you on your faith journey.

Start Walking: Facing Discouragement?

As you begin to walk on the water, you might feel unstoppable: your faith is firm, your eyes are fixed on Jesus, you have stepped into your gifting, God is equipping you, and you’ve got this!

And then along comes a harsh word, or a subtle taunt thrown your way…

“How are you going to balance everything?”

“If God wanted you to do that, He would…”

“You might be okay at X, but you’ll never be as good as X.”

“Are you sure this is what God really wants for you?”

The list goes on an on of potential remarks and encounters with people whose sole purpose is to undermine your faith journey. There is a difference between Biblical wisdom delivered with kindness and genuine concern versus the know-it-all-watchdog who does not want you to succeed or feels threatened in some way.

Remember Deuteronomy 31:8, “The Lord himself goes before you and will be with you; he will never leave you nor forsake you. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged.”(NIV)

As you walk deeply in faith, don’t let the World (i.e., naysayers, Enemy, etc.) hold you back and discourage you.

  • What discouragements are you facing right now?
  • Who can help you on your journey?

Comment below or message us if we can help you uncover God’s work in your life.