Offer sacrifices in the right spirit, and trust the Lord .
Psalms 4:5 NLT
What are you trusting God for? Are you making any sacrifices? You all know that I have been trying to get pregnant for a while. I have definitely sacrificed a lot of things, time, money, vacations, jobs, my skin. I know all of us have made sacrifices as we attempt to accomplish our dreams.
As you are trusting God and making sacrifices are you doing it in the right spirit? I came across this scripture last night and it was a great reminder. God doesn’t just want our sacrifice, he wants the right attitude as well. Your sacrifice doesn’t mean much if your attitude is not right. Sacrifices suck while you are in the midst but you know everything is for your good. I say that a lot but it’s a good thing to remember while you are working toward a goal. When you get what you have been working toward it will feel much better if you had a good attitude along the way.
How do you know if your spirit is right? Are you complaining about every missed opportunity? Are you jealous of other people who didn’t have to sacrifice as much as you have to get to their goal? Do you only do a half job at one you are trying to do because you are tired of working towards a goal and seeing no results? I have some point have definitely done all of these things. Here is a prayer to help with that.
You can just pray that line and let God change your attitude. He wants to help us and he would rather we admit we need the help to change then grumble our way to accomplishing our hearts desires.
In less that a year, one of my friends has gotten married, bought a house, got a new job and had a baby. She is definitely having the best year.She is living her best life. All the things that many women are trying to accomplish she had it happen in no time, so it appears. It looks like she has everything. How many people do you know that have everything? I used to believe that you couldn’t have everything. Life just cannot be that good. Even Paul one of the greatest biblical figures of all time, had a thorn in his side that he prayed that God would take away, and God didn’t.
I wrote before about being happy but not really being able to enjoy it because I was waiting for the other shoe to drop. I feel like that is a pattern in my life that I can be really happy but I don’t have everything. I am still wanting for something. I am not wanting like that never satisfied wanting but really truly waiting on God to answer prayer. Although I have never seen God show up like that in my life yet, I now believe you can have 90% of what you want.
I am not talking about prosperity gospel or any name it and claim stuff. I am just saying that I believe God wants us to be happy on this side of heaven.The bible has lots of scriptures about having an abundant life. The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy; I have come that they may have life, and have it to the full. John 10:10
Now to him who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to his power that is at work within us. Ephesians 3:20
I say 90% because I think about Serena Williams who people would consider to have it all, nice husband, daughter, tennis champion but she cried because she missed her daughters first steps because she was out practicing. That Oprah quote really resonates with me. I want as much as God has to offer for me and I want to be in a position to give back to others. That is why we are blessed, not for ourselves but to be a blessing to others. So when we have it “all” we can be in a position to help someone else get their “all”.
When you wake up in the morning what’s the first thing that comes to mind? I used to think about about my to do lists, what I needed to get done at work or at home. I read a devotional that said the first thing you should be thinking about is thanking God. Not thinking about how the day is going to go or what you have to do but just thanking God for waking you up today.
I am not talking about doing a devotional this is even before you get out of bed. I thought I was doing ok because I got up everything morning and did my devotional but sometimes it would take my brain time to slow down from whatever I was laying in the bed plotting about before I started doing my devotional. This way I am in position to receive the word from God. I am not rushing through my devotional as much and it helps me connect more to the material. This literally takes no time but it changes the entire perspective of my day.
Next time you get out of bed, just thank the Lord for waking you up and for new mercies,then go do your devotional or carry on with your morning routine. See if that makes any differences for you. Let me know how it goes.
If you pray a couple times a day then you may feel like you are using the same prayers over and over. I know I do and I feel bad. I don’t want God to get annoyed because my prayers are routine and flat. I read online a few years ago that one way to add some variety to your prayer time was to use worship songs. It is much easier for me to remember the words to worship songs sometimes than it is to remember scripture. Lots of worship songs have scripture in them anyway. I went back and started copying the lyrics of my favorite worship songs and it has vastly improved my prayer life. I am not as bored doing it and I feel better giving God a little more as well. Sometimes when I am stressed and can’t recall a scripture I think back to those songs and those lyrics help calm me down.
I listen to a lot of worship music so there isn’t any one song or artist that I go too but I do try to find songs that describe how God is and talking about his character. I want God to know I recognize how awesome he is, even though I can’t always find the words to convey that.
These are just some examples if you click on the link the lyrics are scrolling across the screen.
How Great is our God -Jonathan Nelson
Because of who you are-Vicki Yohe
Nobody Greater-Vashawn Mitchell
Holy is our God- James Fortune
Total Praise-Richard Smallwood
Oh Lord, How Excellent-New Jersey Mass Choir
Stay alert! Watch out for your great enemy, the devil. He prowls around like a roaring lion, looking for someone to devour. Stand firm against him, and be strong in your faith. Remember that your family of believers all over the world is going through the same kind of suffering you are.
1 Peter 5:8-9 NLT
The devil never tempts us with things we don’t like. I have been dreaming about things I used to do, activities I have given up. I haven’t thought about them in months and then I have like 3 dreams back to back about it. Definitely kind of crazy. This verse of the day really made me think like this must be a warning from God.I am supposed to be reading Job this week but I really don’t want to. That whole story started because the devil wanted to mess with him, prove a point to God. Now I know God allowed it but he still was testing him, threw his name out there to see what would happen. I hope God isn’t testing me. I am no Job or Jesus. He was tested too. I may fall back into temptation. Maybe, maybe not. I certainly hope not. It is easy for me to rationalize when I want to do something. I have some free time coming up and idle hands are the devils playground. I am definitely going to stay aware and prayed up.
I tend to do that more often than I realized. I was all excited a few weeks ago because a lot of things were happening at once, got a raise, interview opportunity, and I thought I was pregnant. I was like wow God you really are laying it on me. Ok. I wasn’t prepared but I’m like ok this is a good thing. Then I thought like wait, its too good to be true, God is doing this to get my attention there is no way that all this awesomeness can happen at once. I was freaking out because I kept thinking that it was too good to be true. I didn’t think that I could get all the things that I was praying for all at once. For now, I was right.
Didn’t get the job and wasn’t pregnant. A bunch of let down right around the same time. I’m not super disappointed anymore about not being pregnant because as you are reading this I am chilling on the sandy beaches in Mexico and being pregnant here would not have been as fun. I’m not upset about the job because I got beat out by the best and I can’t really be mad at that. I want to explore this topic more, having it all. Where did it come from? Is it actually achievable? I will talk about this more in a later post.
I know what’s for me will be given to me. Nobody, not even me can get in the way of that. I don’t know if God had all that happen to get my attention. Its definitely possible. I haven’t prayed and fasted that much in a long while. I knew that I needed to step it up. I talked about that in a previous post. I feel like there was other things he could do to get my attention although I have to admit these were definitely the best. Maybe it was the devil messing with me. I will never know. I do know that God will never play me and he is not a trickster. I couldn’t find any examples in the bible where he gave the people something good and then snatched it away or gave someone something good to get their attention and then changed his mind. If there is something out there please let me know. One of my favorite verses is, God is not like man he doesn’t lie or change his mind (Numbers 23:19).
So I’m essentially right back where I started aside from the pay increase. When I think about how ridiculous I was acting it makes me laugh. I couldn’t even enjoy the blessing because I was waiting on the other shoe to drop.
I’m sure if it was from God his feelings would be hurt over how I was acting. Who wants to give their kid a present for them to keep checking if you are going to ask for it back? I wouldn’t. So if learned any lesson this week it would be to relax. Enjoy each moment. I know everything works out for my good (Romans 8:28) and I know God has plans he made with my name on them (Jeremiah 29:11).
having been fractured or damaged and no longer in one piece or in working order
(of a person) having given up all hope; despairing.
I used to think I was broken using both definitions. That I was living a lie, that I was going out in the world and acting like everything was ok when it wasn’t. I felt like something inside of me was broken and could not be fixed. I had a hole in my heart that was irreparable. I tried a lot of this but nothing could fill it, not partying, not work, not my friends, not my husband, everything I was trying to do wasn’t working.
So in my last resort I turned to God. I’m glad I did. I learned I’m not broken. God made me this way. He has plans for me that are good. I didn’t always believe that or understand but I stayed in the word. It made a huge difference on my outlook in life. There is beauty in my brokenness. I wouldn’t have grown in my relationship with God if I wasn’t broken. Everyday is practice in reminding myself that I have to meet no one expectations but my own.
If you feel broken just know you don’t have to stay that way. There is a way out. You won’t be able to do it on your own, not long lasting. Getting out of your head and closer to God is the only long term solution and potentially seeing a therapist.
Updated: since I wrote the above words Kate Spade and Anthony Bourdain have both committed suicide. This has sparked debate about what role does prayer and God specifically play in mental health. I think that God is our first resource in working on our mental health. Getting into your bible, prayer, fasting, meditating, it’s all an important part of the healing process. We can’t do it on our own and believing you can may be a fatal mistake. You need tools to overcome things you have been through. Seek help if you need it.