Purposeful Faith

Tag - fear

What is your Secret?

what is your secret

What is your secret?

Normally, I wouldn’t venture into the hidden cabinets of your life like this. Yet, today, I feel compelled to do so. Why? I learned the average person has 13 secrets*. This deeply concerns me, because what we keep inside can’t see the light of God’s healing. Instead, it grows, like mold – in guilt, shame, regret, remorse, and isolation.

Now, don’t get me wrong, I know a thing or two about keeping a secret. I’ve had:

  1. An eating disorder that I tried to (unsuccessfully) hide for a long time.
  2. Financial turmoil in my single years that caught me in a huge struggle.
  3. A bad habit I didn’t want anyone to know about.

But, this is the concerning thing about secrets – it makes Christians feel like:

A. Frauds
B. Liars
C. Disowned by God

This is concerning when to share Christ’s love, we need to first be filled with it (1 Jo. 4:19).

Secrets are like glass windows. No one can really see them, but we know they are there. They keep a wall between us – and God. The amazing thing is – he sees right through them. He sees to our heart. But, our resurrected protective glass keeps His love away.  We prevent intimacy. This is the problem with secrets.

Secrets make us hear and believe: we’re the bad child, the guilty one, the unloved one, the unforgiven one, the broken one, the burdened one.

Then, we manage our own public relations campaign. We control. We lie. We manipulate. We feel horrible about it all – and the cycle continues….

What are your secrets?

They could be:

– financial blunders hidden under the guise of “No, honey, our bank account looks great!”
– a hidden sexual past that you try to pretend never happened.
– a lie that you cannot bring yourself to confess.
– a hidden relationship or deep longing for someone of old.
– stealing, hatred or simple unhappiness at work.
– self-harm, injuring someone in the past or a traumatic event.
– too much wine, prescription drug or bad habit
– ambition or maneuvers to get yourself ahead
– family secrets, past or covering for others
– a belief you want no one to know
– theft or manipulation that is ever so subtle
– an annoyance with a spouse that has been building up for years
– internal hatred towards a child

I am not here to mark you bad and send you to bed. I don’t ask you these things to chide you in Christ Jesus. I don’t even tell you to – get it over with – and release your worst foibles on Facebook. On the contrary, I just bring these things to you from a point of invitation, not condemnation.

You’re Invited: To a Party of Great Release
Where: With God, at your home, in your car, anywhere
How: Through a complete unveiling of your heart, will, and intentions
When: Anytime
What: What is the desire beneath this secret?  Ask God for that desire or for a reworking of it.
Who: Your Father will heal you

Whoever conceals his transgressions will not prosper,
but he who confesses and forsakes them will obtain mercy. Prov. 28:13

Healer is ready to heal. Why not take down the glass wall? Let him in? There is no shame in accepting help. There is no burden to coming to God. There are new beginnings. There are new avenues that will open to you. There is forgiveness from others, and wisdom in the waiting. There is hope from God; there is always hope.

*Study, published in the Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, co-authored by Michael Slepian

Kelly’s new book, Fear Fighting: Awakening Courage to Overcome Your Fears has been called “A must read,” “Breathtakingly honest” and a “Great Toolbox to Overcome Fear.” Read it today.

Discover how to flee from fear and fly in faith through 4 Days to Fearless Challenge.

Get all Purposeful Faith blog posts by email – click here.

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Questions We Have For God…

Questions We Have

This past week, I sat there. There were no texts, no calls and my husband was working late. Everything was dull. Facebook, a vast echo chamber of voices sounding off with complaints, thoughts and little questions posed on colored backgrounds. Empty. TV, a wasteful pursuit of the same old stuff – guns, reality gossip and divisive politics.

I breathed in. I looked up. God, are you here in all this? Sometimes, days just seem – fruitless. Dumb. Wasteful.

And, with this, more questions started flying.

I wonder, are you in this place too, of questioning? Perhaps you are…  Let me assure you, there is nothing wrong in the asking, in the pursuing. So that is what we will do here today. We will ask our hard stuff and then we will hear, what I believe is God’s heart back to us….

Where are you, God?

I love you. I’ve always had you, this, a plan. Wait on me and you’ll hear me. Listen for me and you’ll find me. I have not given you a spirit of fear and timidity but of power love and a sound mind. Great is my faithfulness and my ability to change, help and restore. I have a plan. You will find me when you seek me with all your heart. Get ready. This is only the beginning and where we are going no man, evil and the world cannot stand against. Yes, you may encounter hard times along the way, but I am in them and with you. Be not afraid. You will find my joy in unexplainable ways. You will find my peace surrounding you. I am the fullness of all you need. Rest in me. Walk with me and find me. There are days when you won’t know, that is okay. I know and that is all you need to know. Come follow me. I am the way, your way, the truth, your truth and the life, your life. 

God, how to I proceed? I need direction.

Wait on me. Listen. Stop and hear. Ask and discover. Seek and I’ll open the door to you. Watch and I’ll appear. Immerse yourself in my mind and I’ll immerse myself in you. Pay attention to the little things. Open the door of you heart wider. Unfasten the fear and the shame that is keeping you from the fullness of my glory. My wanting you to let go of this is never about shaming or guilting you. Do you want to pass it over to me today? Do you want to hand over what you see as condemnation, so I can begin a grand reformation? Why not take off the burden and pass it along. I am teaching you and leading you, but you need to be able to hear me and my Word.

God, why aren’t I doing more for you? 

A baby doesn’t run until the training days are done. Often, you think you are ready to sprint before you’re developed. I am growing in you the spiritual muscles to do the things I’ve prepared for you. Daughter, I AM at work. If you will just be faithful in the small things, in the meaningless days, in obedient ways, you’ll find I am taking those underdeveloped places and making them strong, so then we can go and do bigger things. Just think, if you are a baby, or a child and I allow you to pole jump too early, you’ll land on your face. I want you to fly, at my appointed time, in my appointed way. I want you to be ready in full with all my equipping. Here is what you need to know: be faithful in the little and big doors will be opened unto you.

As I asked these questions of God, his peace fell on me. Are there some questions you need to ask of God? He doesn’t hate you for asking; He delights in your pursuit of Him, of truth and of life. Press in. Seek. And, find.

 

Kelly’s new book, Fear Fighting: Awakening Courage to Overcome Your Fears has been called “A must read,” “Breathtakingly honest” and a “Great Toolbox to Overcome Fear.” Read it today.

Discover how to flee from fear and fly in faith through 4 Days to Fearless Challenge.

Get all Purposeful Faith blog posts by email – click here.

Please, Take Care NOT to do This!

Take Care

The waitress was nowhere to be seen, my glass was empty, my food was late and my patience was running thin. Where is she?

I bet she is on a smoke-break. She’s probably sitting outside the kitchen, leaning up against a brick wall, scrolling Facebook. Of course, something probably caught her eye – maybe an old friend? A boyfriend? And then, she started to see who he is friends with and what he’s doing. Then she gets intrigued with the latest place he took a vacation and she starts to look up the hotel…and then…

She better get out here, I’m starving, plus the kids are about 10-seconds away from losing it and I am entirely losing my patience.

A woman walks towards me, clearly the manager, I look at her and say, “Excuse me, our waitress vanished and I have no idea where she went and we are starving, need water and are waiting to order. Did she forget about us.”

The manager replies, “This is why I was coming over, you see, she got really ill in the bathroom and is being rushed to the hospital.”

Oh.

I guess this means she wasn’t smoking.

I guess this means she wasn’t scrolling.

I guess this means she wasn’t sucked up in some Carribean vacation.

And, as soon as I realize what I’ve done, I realize: The second I become judge is the second I pretend to be God.

It doesn’t matter. It doesn’t matter how obvious my assumption appears. It doesn’t matter how blatant their disregard looks. It doesn’t matter how meanly they talk to me. It doesn’t matter what their track record is. It doesn’t matter if they look a certain way. It doesn’t matter if they started one way. It doesn’t matter if I feel hurt.

Unless I am them, I can’t judge them adequately.  And, unless God gives me a day in their body, I can’t know their heart, their intentions or their struggle.

I have to let go. Not only for them, but for me. Because, otherwise, I’ll be walking around a hot shop of contempt. All that will fly is sparks of rage and malice at the proposed things people are doing and I’ll never live one happy day when I’m in their presence. It’s no way to live. It’s no way to look like Jesus.

This means:

I come to terms with not knowing your story or why you displayed rudeness.
I put on pause my impulsive emotions.
I decide to think positive about you.
I remember all that could be going wrong in your life.
I consider how the past has burnt you.
I resolve to let you know I’m here for you.
I turn away from the longing to harbor bad feelings towards you.
I give you the freedom to apologize when it’s right for you – or to never apologize at all.
I wait on God.
I trust he will fight for me while I am silent.
I believe he cares.

I know, we all hit hard days and hard days that make us respond with hard edges. I remember the days when I responded not so nice, or out of fear, or in a need to preserve myself…and I treat the offender like I would have wanted to be treated, maybe better.

I don’t do this now. But I want to. And, in this, I know God will help me see it through, so I can be kind to you when you’re confronting the very worst.

 

Kelly’s new book, Fear Fighting: Awakening Courage to Overcome Your Fears has been called “A must read,” “Breathtakingly honest” and a “Great Toolbox to Overcome Fear.” Read it today.

Discover how to flee from fear and fly in faith through 4 Days to Fearless Challenge.

Get all Purposeful Faith blog posts by email – click here.

Because Sometimes It’s Not All About Us

Post by: Christy Mobley

I wasn’t sure what happened. One day we were the best of friends and the next… I don’t know, there was this immeasurable distance between us.

For two years my friend and I were inseparable. Our kids played together, we vacationed together with our husbands and now, I couldn’t explain it but something was terribly wrong.

The person I spent hours on the phone with sharing heartbreak and joy, now wouldn’t give me a minute of her time.

After days of chill between us I worked up the nerve to ask her.

“Is something wrong? Is it me?”

As if she had no earthly idea what I was talking about she coyly answered,

“No, I’m good.”

But something wasn’t good. Something was terribly wrong. I felt like I was left alone in the middle of a dance floor. Abandoned.

And then I felt suckered punched. Betrayed.

She knew all my secrets—where my bones were buried.

As the days went on I prayed to God for answers while I tried on my own to figure out what happened. Every morning I woke up with a big fat knot in the pit of my gut while in my head I scoured each word of every conversation we recently had for a clue.

Was it the joke about the gas station, not knowing which grade of gas to choose? I was only teasing her. We joked liked that all the time.

Was she put off because I gave her advice in the gym? But she asked.

There’s nothing quite as devastating as losing a close friend and not knowing what took her from you.

Every day I grew more desperate for answers. I prayed. I waited. I cried. I prayed. I waited. I bawled. I prayed I waited. I wailed! Why wasn’t God answering my prayer? What could be the harm in answering this prayer?

I never stopped to consider it wasn’t all about me.

Eventually the tears dried up and life moved on. Moved on without answers.

And we moved on—my family, away to another city.

In my heart of hearts I knew God knew what happened between my friend and me and that in and of itself gave me peace.

My ex-bestie and I exchanged Christmas cards for a few years and talked few times. But months turned into years and I came to the realization there are some things perhaps God just doesn’t want us to know. Secrets that are to remain hidden.

Several moves and eighteen years later, my husband, David and I attended a wedding for the daughter of another dear friend. At there at the reception across the room between the coconut shrimp and the carving station stood my ex-bestie. It had been years since we’d seen each other.

I walked over and we exchanged hugs and for the next few minutes did what old friends do when they haven’t talked in years. We caught up making small talk about our kids, husbands and nothing. Around the time I thought, that’s that, the conversation took and unanticipated turn.

“Christy” she said, “I need to apologize to you.”

I was truly taken aback. What is this about, I thought?

She went on.

“I’m sorry. I’m sorry for ruining our friendship—one of the best friendships I’ve ever had. I’m sorry for pulling away. I’ve wanted to tell you for a long time. It wasn’t about you. It was me.”

She went on to explain what had been going on in her heart and why she grew distant. The “what” I didn’t know.

I stood in relief of my 18 year old question and more so marveled at God’s handi-work of the process.

In this hurry-up and fix-it world, we want what we want when we want it. All those many years ago I was hurting and wanted answers.

But God is not as much concerned about time as He is about the timing.
We want a quick fix. He wants to fix hearts.

He wants to heal us.

He wants to change us.

Grow our character to be more in-line with His. And that takes a providential process.

Maybe you’re dealing with an unanswered prayer right now. It could be a broken relationship or maybe it’s something else entirely. I assure you the moment you prayed a plan was laid. Just because you don’t get your answer right away, doesn’t mean it isn’t coming.

Because sometimes it’s not all about us.

“He said to them: “It is not for you to know the times and dates the Father has set by his own authority.'” Acts 1:7

Christy is an award winning writer, national speaker, wife, mother, mother-in-law, and first time grandma! She is passionate about helping women see God working for their good in the midst of their circumstances.

When Christy isn’t with family, speaking or writing, you can find her on the tennis court chasing a fuzzy yellow ball. You can connect with Christy on her blog, Joying in the Journey, Facebook, and Twitter

 

 

How You Handle Mistakes is Important

Handle Mistakes

His face said it all: his brows furrowed inward, his eyes squinted and his mouth was as tight as a rubber band ready to explode. My son was angry at himself. In all his 6-years of wisdom, he knew – he’d done something he wasn’t happy with.

He looked up at daddy and said, “I want to go in time-out for 2 minutes – for you, daddy…”

My son’s words got me thinking recently, as a friend offered me unsolicited advice I knew I shouldn’t be listening to. God had already made my steps clear: I was to wait on Him until wisdom came. I knew this was the plan. Yet, as I sat down with this friend and they started talking on and on about what I should do, my heart started to plummet.

Would it really turn out okay? I really should save myself. Is anyone there to help me? 

While one minute I was standing strong with God, the next, I was tumbling over with fear. I was buckling in with anxiety.

Ever been there? Ever been sure of what God wanted you to do, only to act out the exact opposite?

I let another’s influence invade a boundary God had established. And, I felt horrible about it.

What do you feel horrible about? What boundary has been invaded in your life, in a way where you constantly beat yourself up? In a way where you feel bad, horrible and no good? In a way where you’re not sure you can ever be nice to yourself again?

Because of what I did, I was convinced God was stripping me of all my good girl medals. It was as if, the row of trophies I’d earned – were disappearing before my very eyes. I was being demoted on his team and I was being relegated to the sidelines.

I could almost see it all happening and transpiring because of my faithlessness. You’re out, Kelly! You’re out! So, I took myself out of the game. I counted myself unworthy. I discounted my standing. I practically said to God, “I want to go in time-out for 2 minutes – for you, daddy.”

Like me, are you keeping yourself in time out – for daddy? Are you holding yourself back to make right what you know you made wrong? Are you punishing yourself?

For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but to save the world through him. Jo. 3:17

If Jesus didn’t come to put us in permanent time out…then why do we send ourselves there? Why do we stay far from the Healer who wants to heal?

If Jesus came to save and not punish,
his procedure is to heal us and not ruin us.

With this idea in mind, we can approach him from a feeling of loved, adored and about-to-be restored, rather than failing and floundering.

When can approach like this:

  1. I am sorry God.
  2. You forgive me God.
  3. I am holy God, in you.
  4. Nothing can change that.
  5. I am blameless in you.
  6. You are leading me a new way.

And then, we realize, we were never outside of his love, but we were always in it and, then, we remember it is his love that heals us every time.

Kelly’s new book, Fear Fighting: Awakening Courage to Overcome Your Fears has been called “A must read,” “Breathtakingly honest” and a “Great Toolbox to Overcome Fear.” Read it today.

Discover how to flee from fear and fly in faith through 4 Days to Fearless Challenge.

Get all Purposeful Faith blog posts by email – click here.

When God Goes Silent (& 3 Ways to Reconnect)

God Goes Silent

Ever opened your bible to only hear crickets from God?
Ever felt like you and your Father were neighborhoods apart in connection?
Like you somehow lost your close standing next to your high King?

I feel this small creep. The creep of “something is not right,” the creep of pulling away, the creep of “I am not hearing as much.”

Small creeps away from God over days, turn into giant mile gaps over months.

What I have noticed is, the sooner my heart checks it’s receptivity to God, and adjusts its channels the more of a chance, I have of hearing his voice. Usually, I can avoid the “slow creep” seep – but I have to first start by being aware of when it.

The slow creep seep can be sneaky – if you aren’t aware that it can move in at any time.

Now, don’t get me wrong, there are times God does go silent.

Sometimes he shuts down the music, the connection and here is why:

1. To help us remember God is God and we are not.

When you did these things and I kept silent, you thought I was exactly like you. Ps. 50:21

2. To settle our hearts in the deep places his trusting love.

The LORD your God is in your midst, A victorious warrior He will exult over you with joy, He will be quiet in His love, He will rejoice over you with shouts of joy. Zeph. 3:17

3. To handle “Kingdom causes” outside of our comprehension.

Why do You look with favor On those who deal treacherously? Why are You silent when the wicked swallow up Those more righteous than they? Hab. 1:13

What I want my heart to finally learn is that: God does what he does, but he always reigns from above, out of love.

This is always God’s MO, battle plan, driving force, and charge – every time.

On the other hand, sometimes the issue of silence is not founded in God’s plan it is founded in us. Like a cavity, we may have stored up so much decay that our faith bite loses its power.

Here’s how we remove decay and get back to the fullness of pleasure as we digest all the goodness of God:

1. We beat out bitterness.  

Bitterness can be a byproduct of unforgiveness.
Who do you need to forgive – God, yourself or others?

2. We ask to hear and plead for God to come near.

O God, do not remain quiet; Do not be silent and, O God, do not be still. Ps. 83:1

When we ask, God listens.

3. We dive into the Word of God, to be replenished by his Words always read to bring truth.

He replied, “Blessed rather are those who hear the word of God and obey it.” Lu. 11:28

When we hear the Word of God, we hear God.

4. Worship the one who surrounds you with his glory.

…God’s invisible qualities-his eternal power and divine nature-have been clearly seen, being understood from what has been made, so that men are without excuse. Ro. 1:20

See God around you and you will start to feel God well up in you.

5. Seek and serve up love in all you do by giving, helping, serving, opening up, receiving and pouring out.

No one has ever seen God; but if we love one another, God lives in us and his love is made complete in us. 1 Jo. 4:12

The more we learn love (including the receipt of it), the more we feel God’s love.

The truth is – God is love. If we are operating from love, we are operating from the tabernacle of God’s goodness. Different days, call for different strategies. Sometimes, we are restored with his love, sometimes we are restored by a love of his Word and other times, we are restored to share

Different days, call for different strategies. Sometimes, we are restored – to love, sometimes we are restored – by His love and other times, we are restored – to search out greater love.

No matter what his call for you today, one thing is for sure, slow creeps are simply not from him. So, lets allow our hearts to creep back to the throne of the King of all care. He waits for us – with love.

Kelly’s new book, Fear Fighting: Awakening Courage to Overcome Your Fears has been called “A must read,” “Breathtakingly honest” and a “Great Toolbox to Overcome Fear.” Read it today.

Discover how to flee from fear and fly in faith through 4 Days to Fearless Challenge.
Get all Purposeful Faith blog posts by email – click here.

3 Steps to Calm Anxiety

Calm Anxiety

I’ve battled the tightness of chest, the shakiness of body and the uncertainty of what is to come for quite a while. Only recently have I been able to win the war against what seems incurable: my anxiety.

Do you suffer from it?

It’s a feeling you can’t get ahead…
It’s surviving, with generalized gnawing…
It’s living with overwhelming tenseness because you feel out of control…
It’s bearing with the weight of the world on your shoulders…
It’s carrying irritation from others actions…
It’s a true sense of your inability to change things…

For so long, anxiety crept up on me like a lightweight spider; I didn’t know he was on me until his poison sank in. Then I knew, I was in for it. He saturated me in a way where it felt impossible to get well again. To fix things. Maybe you’ve been there. I wouldn’t wish it on my greatest enemy.

Anxiety has ruined family vacations.

It’s made me snap like an explosive.
It’s caused many a sleepless night.
It’s broken peace.
It’s stolen moments.
It’s made me self-consumed.
It’s made me angry at myself.

What has it taken from you? What has this poison done in your body? Life?

Only recently have I started to make headway against it.

Step 1 of progress is in acknowledging this: My anxiety is due to a gap I do not internally believe I have the power to bridge, control or fix.

Step 2 is deciding I am in charge of my feelings. No one else has the ability to: 1. Tell me how to feel. 2. Make me feel a certain way 3. Force me to have feelings or to act a certain way.

With this, I can imagine a holy box of God around me. In this space, I am permitted to feel as I feel without feeling bad about it. In this space, I am able to present to God the actual emotion I am feeling and the cause that set it off, without living under the weight of crushing judgment. Why can I do this? Because Jesus is my advocate. He forgives, heals and helps. He is behind me and for me. He also wants me to discover his peace. He loves me.

Step 3 is saying this: God, I do not have the ability to figure ______ (insert the trigger of the issue here) out. I need your help with how to respond. Will you show me how to stay with you in this space and place that feels scary? Will you show me how to lean on you when I am not sure how people will react or how well I will do? Will you be my protection as I respond in a way that is truthful – to you and to others? I can hand over to you the person, place or thing that is troubling my heart and be with you in the moment. Here, you will lead me and prompt me to move with your love, grace and mercy towards myself and towards others. I can trust you to be with me, even when I feel all alone.

This 3-step process has literally been my saving grace. When I feel the poison starting to rise up from within me, God’s grace towards my constricting heart makes all the difference. It frees me. The secret is: you gotta catch it early. Right when it starts.

And, when you don’t, it’s okay. Just try again next time.

Prayer for women like me who struggle like this: Dear God, here we stand before you, women who don’t have it all figured out, women who want to be better, women who struggle inside our own bodies. God, will you help us to rely on your truth instead of our feelings? Will you help us to put up healthy barriers between us and the world? Will you help us to take your peace you’ve given us and to keep it? We need you. We can’t do it alone. Please be our guide, Lord Jesus. You are the answer every time. We trust your ways and want to die to our own. In Jesus’ name we pray. Amen.

Kelly’s new book, Fear Fighting: Awakening Courage to Overcome Your Fears has been called “A must read,” “Breathtakingly honest” and a “Great Toolbox to Overcome Fear.” Read it today.

Discover how to flee from fear and fly in faith through 4 Days to Fearless Challenge.
Get all Purposeful Faith blog posts by email – click here.

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Filtering the Voices You Let In

Filtering the Voices

Two moms duked it out, while I tried to pull a floppy wet shirt off my body in the pool stall. I’d tell you all I wasn’t eavesdropping, but I’d be lying; I was 100% listening to every word that flowed from their mouths from the safe-confines of my bunker.

“Harvard is going to be such a far drive for my son come Fall. I don’t know how we are going to do it.” Said mom voice 1.

“Well, thank goodness, He’s going to Harvard because Stanford is farther and I get sick flying on airplanes, even in first-class.”

Now, these two, who I was sure were perfectly toned, impeccably made-up and outrageously beautiful, brought to the surface my every insecurity. And based on their words, I was scheming… trying to internally figure out how to corral my son, tie him down and drag him to the local tutoring session post-school… It’s not too much to ask a kid to do SAT questions at age 6 is it? A mom’s who starts early, wins.

My competitive juices were flowing. My mind racing and twisting and…all of a sudden – Godly wisdom struck: I don’t have to enter into this life-killing race with these women.

I can choose not to be a part of this rat race. I can unsubscribe.

Unsubscribing sounds like this: They can do what they want to or say what they say. They can work hard to acquire wealth, goods or status. They can talk about it. They can make it their life goal. But, just because that is what they are doing, doesn’t mean it is what I should be doing. What I should be doing is: making Christ my aim, making Christ my thoughts, making love my goal. 

I can’t change people, but what I can change is: my mind, my thoughts and my goals.

This feels like freedom.

I sense there are some of you who need freedom right now too. Maybe from a person who is causing your mind to go to places God hasn’t invited it?

Right now, join me in asking God, “What words, goals or pursuits have I been allowing to take hold in my heart that are not from you?”

Listen for his response. Be aware of how God might be leading you.

Then, ask him, “How can I protect my heart in a better way?”

I believe he’s saying to me: “Kelly, everything you hear doesn’t have to go to your heart.”

And, I agree. Starting today, I’ll filter what I let in.

Thank you God, you are faithful.

 

 

Don’t Miss The Journey Together Summit, June 5-8! Join 34 leading authors with the sole mission of helping you discover new bravery. Whether you desire to be brave at home or at work, in your marriage or with your children, in ministry or in the mess of the day, dealing with a surprising life or just organizing it – this is the event for you.  There is something for everyone with over 34 topics of fear covered (wait till you see them all!).

Want to win a bundle of 10-books here, enter to win here.

Kelly’s new book, Fear Fighting: Awakening Courage to Overcome Your Fears has been called “A must read,” “Breathtakingly honest” and a “Great Toolbox to Overcome Fear.” Read it today.

Discover how to flee from fear and fly in faith through 4 Days to Fearless Challenge.
Get all Purposeful Faith blog posts by email – click here.

Add Life to Your Life

Life

When I got home, I noticed one remaining trash can. Apparently, my husband didn’t pull it to the end of the driveway for pickup. Approaching it, I could see why…maggots climbed up, down and all over it. Yuck! I looked inside, only to see, at the bottom, a half eaten box of chicken legs.

And, seeing this, brought a valuable insight: Death leads to more death.

Death leads to more death because, what life – sin has killed, the enemy, like a maggot – feeds on. He brings more death.

Now, sweet friends, I am fully aware all this talk sound highly disgusting. But, I also believe it can be highly transforming, this is why we are venturing into the depths of trash.

Consider this: For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord. Ro. 6:23

Sin leads to death.
Then, death leads to death.
Jesus leads to life.
Then, life leads to life.

Where have you allowed sin to produce death in your life? How is the enemy feeding on you, only to produce more death – death of joy, peace, productivity, power, grace, hope, love, mercy – in your life? Death of relationships? Death of belief?

While through the Spirit, we are being transformed into the image of Christ with ever-increasing glory (2 Cor. 3:18), I am convinced the enemy’s operating procedure is to move us to ever-diminishing glory. So we don’t look like Christ.

Today, I didn’t want to touch that maggot-box. I didn’t want to drag it down the driveway, but I knew, it had to go or the death would stay.

What today, do you need to drag in front of Jesus – and let go in order to remove the death that is settling in around you?

Be not afraid, my brothers and sisters, our God is a gentle God, slow to anger, abounding in grace, mercy and new life. When you come and encounter his face, the face of your sin will change.

Perhaps, you do this today. Rather than continuing in excusing, rationalizing, permitting, blaming or smearing – today, perhaps you approach the one who loves you – so he can.

This is my prayer for you – and for me…

Dearest Father, you love us. You love us, then you love us, then you love us…and love us some more. May we know, in the place where we feel death, we are only a confession away from your life. May we know you want us. May we know you always welcome us. We confess, God, we have fallen into sin. It looks like this: _______. It has hurt us in this way: _____.  We hand it to you, into your loving hands. We are sorry. What new way can we go when we are prone to do it, Father God? ____. We thank you, Lord. In Jesus’ name, we pray. Amen.

 

 

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4 Steps: Find Intimacy with God Again

Find Intimacy

When I haven’t made time for my husband, I get annoyed at the dishes left on the counter, I internally count the ways he’s forgetting stuff and I launch mean words. Distance creates more distance. It’s as if I see him through different eyes. It’s as if, he, the love of my life, I only kind of know. I rely on him less. I turn inward; I become self-reliant.

It happens just the same with God.

Consider Eve. The serpent came, lured her with something apparently better than intimacy. She bit off a hunk of it, hid, covered in shame and then heard God as a distant voice.

Sin distanced Eve, then Eve distanced herself.

How have you distanced God through guilt and shame laden choices? How are you choosing to distance yourself today?

Are you running, hiding, excusing, blaming, rationalizing, ignoring – the problem? No catastrophe has ever been diverted by ignoring it. But, you can overcome even the worst catastrophes with the help of the Overcomer.

The strategy of overcoming is simple: Come near to God and he will come near to you. Ja. 4:8

God calls us back. Here’s how to draw close again:

  1. Return with confidence. All that exists at the throne of grace is grace; it pours out from him who is grace to us who need grace. We simply turn away from what kept us from God – and find Him.Therefore let us confidently approach the throne of grace to receive mercy and find grace whenever we need help. (Heb. 4:16)2
  2. Remember there is no barrier. While there used to be a high priest who could go near to the “Most Holy Place” one time a year, today, through the hope of Jesus Christ nothing holds us back.You (for the law made nothing perfect), and a better hope is introduced, by which we draw near to God. (Heb. 7:19)
  3. Reflect on the truth: Jesus is for you. The ultimate high priest lives to intercede for you. He is for you and working on your behalf.Therefore He is able to save completely those who come to God through him… he lives to intercede for them. (Heb. 7:25)
  4. Respond with a sincere heart. You can be truthful because God is faithful. You can trust him to take care of you.Since we have confidence to enter the sanctuary by the blood of Jesus…let us draw near with a sincere heart in the assurance that faith brings… (Heb. 10:19-22)

“The Lord is near to all who call upon Him, to all who call upon Him in truth.” (Psalm 145:18)

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