Don’t be afraid of your blessings

A girl in my small group said this to me and it has changed my whole outlook on my pregnancy. When I found out I was pregnant, I can’t say I was overjoyed or crying or jumping up and down. I was in a state of disbelief. Literally. I thought it may have been a false positive. I went to the drug store to buy another test but God stopped me.

I am a chronic over thinker but I wouldn’t say I was an anxious person. That has changed. I was worried about anything and everything. I was essentially Googling myself into panic. I unfortunately know of too many unhappy endings. Almost everyone of my friends cried when I told them about the baby. It was overwhelming. Then I started to worry about was I hurting God’s feelings by not being grateful. Fear was definitely overriding my joy.

overthinking

I’m listening to this girls memoir and she talked about not auditioning for Dreamgirls because she was afraid. They asked for her to try out and she never made herself available to audition. Seems like a dumb thing to do, but I definitely understand how she feels.

I am in a much better space now.  I appreciate that God allows us to work things out in our own way in our own time. He was never upset with me about how I was reacting, I was upset with myself because I was comparing myself to other people. In my post Being pregnant, I talked about my friend being surprised about how I was treating the pregnancy. Being afraid of my blessing was definitely the reason. Another thing about that is trying to be cognizant of everyone’s feelings around me. I have been the girl that is wanting and waiting and I don’t want to make anyone uncomfortable. I have read articles from being with fertility issues feeling the same way. Its hard because nobody I know personally has been in this situation before.

something happened

Anybody can run into this issue. Its called the Imposter Syndrome.

The questions of, do I belong here? Do I deserve these blessings? Am I good enough? I was big on waiting on the other shoe to drop. It doesn’t have to be that way. Something bad is not necessarily going to follow this good thing.

I had to remind myself that I do deserve these blessings and that God is a promise keeper. God wants us to be happy on this side of heaven. Let the good times roll!! I won’t be blocking my blessing by being afraid of them. I will embrace everything that God gives me with joy.

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Let the good times roll

Recently I have been in a very good place in my life, work is good, Being pregnant, my husband got a new job. We have no complaints over here. Its been a long time since I have been able to make this kind of declaration. It’s an exciting time in my life with lots of changes and growth. I must admit that its been going to my head a little bit. Its very easy to spend time with God everyday when things are not going well. When you are in a PIT (personal intense trial, Wendy Pope) all you have is the Lord.

I talked about this some previously in Using your gift about not doing what I knew I was supposed to be doing because I was so sick. I had a decent excuse then. I was so giddy and happy that it was hard for me to focus on my bible reading and nothing was holding my attention for very long. I knew I needed to get back on track but I just didn’t know how. I asked this question in the leadership class I take at church.

How do you maintain the same level of personal relationship with God when things are going well? 

We have seen many fall in the bible fall victim to their own success, Saul, Solomon, Nebuchadnezzar, just to name a few. I don’t want that to happen to me. A young lady in the class gave a great answer to my question. She talked about Asa a king in the Old Testament. Asa was king during a time of peace and what he did during peace time was tear down idols and prepare for war. This makes perfect sense! This brings up another set of questions.

How do we today tear down idols? How do we prepare for war?

Clearly we don’t have physical idols to or battles that we need to prepare for but what spiritual idols do you need to tear down? What spiritual battles do you need to get ready for? I am going to talk about how to do this in my next post.

 

To hug or not hug

At my church we have a welcome at the beginning of service. During this time you are supposed to get up and greet your neighbor. I personally am not a big hugger, not with strangers not with anybody really. I am getting used to doing it more as I get older but it is definitely something I have had to grow into.

dont think about-hug

Our pastor preached in a sermon not to long ago that if you don’t hug people during the welcome then you are being selfish. I could not believe it! Selfish! That seems a bit harsh. He went on to explain by not hugging your neighbor that you are holding back a piece of yourself. The person sitting next to you may not get a hug or a smile into they come back to church the following week.

His main point was community. I can understand that but do I need to express that with physical touch?

Its funny, I wrote this on Sunday and then I was at my in laws yesterday and my father in law asked me for a hug before I left, no problem. My mother in law asked for one, which I obliged and she said that it should be an automatic. Family shouldn’t have to ask for hugs. She didn’t seem to like my response of you can’t make me hug anybody, family or not.

hug-quote

Am I wrong for this? Am I sending out bad vibes? Would you not feel as loved by your family and friends if they didn’t hug you or didn’t offer one first? I didn’t grow up in a house that had a lot of public displays of affection. We were definitely not huggers. I can’t say that I want to pass that down to my son, I want to be more affectionate with him. I don’t want to overdue it either. I’m not sure if I will ever be comfortable hugging strangers. Any tips on how I can be a better hugger? Does it matter? Let me know. In the meantime…

hug sent

Faith vs being realistic

These two things don’t really go together. Faith doesn’t have anything to do with being realistic. It’s evidence of things unseen. Realistic means you have evidence, facts, proof. My God doesn’t operate like that. God can do anything,everything, the extraordinary. Things that are not realistic. Things that were deemed impossible.

Once he makes that impossible thing happen we have a responsibility to shout it from the rooftops. What a testimony! God won’t play you. He doesn’t give good things and take them away. He tailors each blessing to us as individuals. That’s why comparisons don’t work. What he has for you is not what he has for them and that’s ok. We don’t know what God is saying to them, we only see outcomes.

Faith is not pretending everything is ok. Faith is facing the facts and not getting discouraged. You got this! Insert whatever your *this* is.

Its easy to be scared when you don’t know the outcome and you spend a lot 3 time in the dark. Even if God told you would you believe him. God told the Israelite’s for years they were going to be captured by Babylon but they didn’t believe him. He told Sarah the next year she would have a baby and she laughed!

God is in the blessing business. Period. When the timing is right. Not a second before. He doesn’t tease. He doesn’t lie. He is not like man. He doesn’t start things and not finish them.

As we embark on the new year we always have new things that we want to accomplish. Being realistic always seems to get in the way of that however. You have something you want to do you should do it. Don’t let being realistic stop you from doing what you want. My pastor always says, if your goal is possible then where is the God factor?

Bible in a year plan

It’s the beginning of the year so I know you are looking through your Bible app or bible trying to find a reading plan to get into and the bible in a year may sound good to you. You may not have read All the books in the bible and this is a great way to do get that done.

I did the bible in a year plan last year. Just finished on January 1. It was certainly a challenge. I probably won’t do it again though.

1. I unfortunately don’t remember a lot of what I read.
2. Sometimes I wouldn’t want to read based on book I was in.
3. Then reading became a job and not something I wanted to do.
4. I got bored. There are sections of the old testament that are just boring. No offense.
5. God seemed so mean in the old testament. Don’t get me wrong the Israelites were being ridiculous but God just seemed really harsh at times.

UPDATE: I haven’t really gotten back into a groove of bible reading since I finished my bible in a year challenge. What are you reading right now? I could definitely use some suggestions. I typically like to read a short plan with a longer plan for some variety but nothing is catching my eye.

Combat the devil with Gods word

I have heard this a 1000x but I can’t say I always do it. The other day I was kind of spiraling. One bad thought lead to another and my perspective was going downhill fast. My brain started recalling scripture that I read to tell.myself that isn’t true. That’s the devil talking. I see now more than anything why they say put on the full.armor of God.

The biggest problem was that I don’t retain enough of the bible I’m reading so when I need to recall a verse I don’t remember it or only pieces. That doesn’t help much. I’m trying to push myself to read more slowly and write things down. This is basically just me being more intentional with my bible study.

It’s hard to know if it’s you or God talking if you don’t know his word. The bible can feel really boring at times. Mix it up. I think I got in a slump because I am reading a bible in a year plan and I have been in the old testament for a while and it is wearing on me. Usually as I read my bible in a year plan I read another topical plan as well to mix it up. I haven’t recently been doing that though. I want to put on the full armor of God. The devil is constantly taking shots at me and I need to have my defenses ready. The best way to do this is to stay in the word.

god v satan

Being pregnant

I know I was pretty casual about announcing my pregnancy. I have been that way the entire time. People always think its really funny. I am not trying to downplay anything. I don’t I have been this happy and overwhelmed at the same time in my life. The only other time I can think of is when I was planning my wedding.

One of my bfs said that I am acting way differently then she thought I would about this pregnancy. I am not sure at all what that means. I’m going to ask her before I post this so I can have an answer for all of us. UPDATE:  Still don’t have an answer to this. It will be in the part 2.

When I first found out I was pregnant it literally came out of nowhere. I went to the doctor in August to get some testing done, because I wanted to start trying again. The news I received was not encouraging. The doctor told me that there was no change from last year and that I probably would not be able to get pregnant without the help of fertility drugs. This was two days before my birthday, September 11. I left the doctor feeling pretty bummed but I was going to Toronto for my birthday that weekend so I rescinded to not be bitter. I told the doctor I didn’t want to go the fertility drug route, so even though she wrote me a prescription for Clomid, I never got it filled. A direct quote from my journal….

TMI alert:

We got back from our trip (which was sooo much fun) and life moved on. Fast forward its the first week of October and my period is late. I didn’t think that much of it because I have had false alarms before. Took at test after about a week that was inconclusive. I continued to party and have a good time. Hence my I extended my summer vacation post. Still nothing after another week, so I take another test. Its positive!!

I didn’t think it was real. I thought I had a false positive. I think I walked around the entire first trimester in a state of disbelief. I was sick and felt awful but that was the only evidence I was pregnant. I lost 7lbs, it was not good. I believed God gave me this blessing but I just was so worried that I definitely didn’t enjoy the experience.

I wrote all that to say, its an odd place to be to be pregnant when it took so long to get there. For it to happen out of nowhere still blows my mind. I never doubted it would happen, I just thought it would take a few months, maybe at the end of the year or something.

UPDATE: There will definitely be a Part Two. I have a lot more to say about this subject it ended up getting posted before I was finished. Stay tuned.