Posts Tagged ‘victory’

You Before Me

Oh man, am I ever behind on reading all of your blog posts! I will set aside time tomorrow to catch up. I miss you guys! The last few weeks have been very busy with getting ready for school, and school starting. But this week I’m expecting to settle into the groove again.

Yesterday was our 18th wedding anniversary! We spent the day with the kids, went for pizza, and back to the place where it all started. We had our daughter take a picture of us, standing in the same place we did all those years ago and said, “I do!” Here’s the picture..

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We always talk about how we don’t feel like it’s already been 18 years (20 years if you count dating!), and how we can’t wait for the next 18. But, that doesn’t mean it’s been all peaches and cream, folks! We have definitely had our shares of ups and downs, and times when “goodbye” had sadly become an option. But, The Lord is good, and stayed ever faithful to work with us, and meet us where we were at. Without him, we would’ve been another statistic.

If your relationship is in a tough spot right now, I want to encourage you to remember the first days together, and get back to the puppy love stage. Seek The Lord in all you do..every response you give to your partner, every action you take towards your partner. It took us a long while to really put each other first (after The Lord) and focus on each others needs above our own. But once we did, things started changing fast.

Like Dr. Laura says, be your husband’s girlfriend..and husbands, be your wife’s boyfriend. It really makes a difference, friends!

Don’t give up hope, the change begins with you.

——

Philippians 2:1-11
Good News Translation (GNT)

Christ’s Humility and Greatness

1 Your life in Christ makes you strong, and his love comforts you. You have fellowship with the Spirit,[a] and you have kindness and compassion for one another. 2 I urge you, then, to make me completely happy by having the same thoughts, sharing the same love, and being one in soul and mind. 3 Don’t do anything from selfish ambition or from a cheap desire to boast, but be humble toward one another, always considering others better than yourselves. 4 And look out for one another’s interests, not just for your own. 5 The attitude you should have is the one that Christ Jesus had:

6 He always had the nature of God,
but he did not think that by force he should try to remain[b] equal with God.
7 Instead of this, of his own free will he gave up all he had,
and took the nature of a servant.
He became like a human being
and appeared in human likeness.
8 He was humble and walked the path of obedience all the way to death—
his death on the cross.
9 For this reason God raised him to the highest place above
and gave him the name that is greater than any other name.
10 And so, in honor of the name of Jesus
all beings in heaven, on earth, and in the world below[c]
will fall on their knees,
11 and all will openly proclaim that Jesus Christ is Lord,
to the glory of God the Father.

—-

Until next time,

Sarah

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Attitude of Graditude

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What are you grateful for today? Are you in a place, spiritually, where you are able to praise Him regardless of circumstance?

“I will bless the Lord at all times; His praise shall continually be in my mouth.” Psalm 34:1

Man, it can be so hard to stay in an attitude of praise when everything seems to be tumbling down around us. But, as I’ve said before, praise confuses the enemy, friends! And not only that, but praising also keeps our focus where it belongs..on Victory..on Him!

No matter what’s going on around you today, or how the storm rages, be grateful for Him and praise His holy name. Because He is good! And His mercies endureth forever, and ever. Amen!

Decide to make it an amazing weekend! Every day is a blessing, don’t forget it.

Onward and upward, Christian soldiers!

You are blessed,

– Sarah

Well, I sure Didn’t Expect That!

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How do you react when the unexpected hits? I’m not talking about finding a million dollars unexpectedly. I’m talking about finding out you have cancer. Finding out you or your spouse have lost their job. Finding out your power bill tripled, but is still due in full on the 1st. Finding out your child won’t advance to the next grade in school. Finding out your friend is cheating on their spouse..with your spouse. Going to start your car in the morning on the way to a job interview, and it’s dead. Finding out your child used the internet on their cell phone 24/7 in the last billing period and went over the data allotment by a landslide, leaving you with an outrageous bill to pay.

What do you do?

Do you call everyone you know? Do you post it on Facebook or Twitter immediately? Do scream and throw a fit? Do you punch a wall?

Or do you stop dead in your tracks, look up, and say, “Lord, help me.”

“Lord, I know You have a plan to turn even this for good.”

“Daddy, I’m in big trouble. I’m scared. I’m feeling very alone. But I know You’re here, and that You won’t leave Me. I believe You will make a way where there seems to be no way. I know that with You by my side, all of my battles are already won. And so, I will leave this situation at your feet, and continue to strive for the upcoming victory.”

It’s easy, when the unexpected slaps you upside the head, to deal with it in the flesh. I know, I’ve done it frequently!

But, does dealing with it in the flesh solve anything?

Does complaining to your friends, and posting sympathy inducing status updates on your social media feeds help anything? Is the problem solved now? Do you have peace now? I’m thinking not. Why?

Because you can’t find peace when you’re constantly focusing on, and elevating, the problem. Peace doesn’t exist in the flesh, it exists in the spirit.

Peace comes when we give our cares to Him. (Matthew 6:25-34)

So today, make a conscious decision: When the unexpected hits, I will look UP instead of out/down. I will call on His mighty name, instead of screaming my woes to the masses.

Let me say, also, there’s nothing wrong with sending out a request for prayer to friends. I’m not saying there is. But notice the difference in the two following prayers requests..

1. “PLEASE PRAY FOR ME! Stephen found out today (on payday no less!!) that he’s lost his job, then the vet called saying that the dog needs surgery and it “can’t wait”, the car is on “E”, so now I have to WALK to pick up my kids from school (how embarrassing is that?!), because the bank account is empty and I can’t fill the car up..AND, here’s the kicker, I have no food in the cupboards!! I don’t know what we are going to do. I don’t know why God is doing this, we’ve been faithful tithers, we are good people, we help others! I thought He wasn’t supposed to give us anything more than we could handle! Well, HELLO, I CAN’T HANDLE THIS!! Life sucks.”

2. “Friends and family, I’m writing to ask that you please keep our family in your prayers. We are fighting towards victory in a few situations, and would appreciate the “back up” of your prayers. Thanks so much! We look forward to sharing the praise report with you! As always, we will continue to lift you up in prayer as well. God is GOOD – ALL the time!”

Notice the difference? One screams of panic and drama. The other speaks softly, but directly, with power and belief for a better day to come. One says my God isn’t big enough. The other says my God is good, and my victory draweth nigh!”

One says, I choose to worship Satan in this affliction. The other says, I choose to worship my Savior God in this situation.

Choose wisely today, my friends! He loves you dearly. Give Him center stage. He deserves it. And He won’t disappoint. Life gets hard, just as He promised it would. But your story doesn’t end here. These earthly troubles will pass away. Your destiny involves dancing on streets of gold!

You are blessed! Focus on the victory, not the trial. In doing that, you give God the glory! My love to all of you as we continue on this journey to growth together! It’s not always easy, but it’s always worth it!

– Sarah

Are You up for a Challenge?

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Get out there and do that thing you’ve been putting off!

Today is your day!

You are fully equipped!

You can do it!

Blessings,

Sarah

How’s Your Vison?

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This devotional by Pastor Osteen was very uplifting to me. I pray it will be for you, too! Let your vision rise higher!

Blessings,

Sarah

———————

Be All That You Can See
By Joel Osteen

God created us as visual beings. He is a creative God, and He’s given us the ability to create as well. It all starts with what you see in your mind’s eye. Everyone has their own mental picture of the way they see themselves, their family and their future. This picture determines what kind of life you live. If you have an image of success, victory, health, happiness and abundance, you will naturally gravitate toward that. But if you have an image of lack, defeat and mediocrity, that negative mental picture will keep you from God’s best.

Remember, if you’re going to be successful, you have to first see yourself as successful — the way God sees you. According to your faith, it will be done to you.

Faith comes by hearing the Word. That’s why it’s so important to take time every day to study and meditate on God’s promises. Let His truth sink down deeply into your heart. Open your eyes of faith so you can see yourself rising higher. Choose to have a vision of victory and be all that you can see!

Prayer:
Father God, I pray today that You would open the eyes of my heart and reveal Yourself to me. Show me Your ways. Show me Your love. Help me to see myself the way You see me so that I can be all that You have created me to be in Jesus’ name. Amen.

Scripture:
Then He touched their eyes, saying, “According to your faith let it be to you.” (Matthew 9:29 NKJV)

Goals..Man’s Best Friend?

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We were making flowers – like the ones you see in the picture – last night for our friend’s graduation party. Let me just say, it’s not as easy as you may think!

Ok, it’s easy. Kindergarteners could do it.

But an adult hellbent on perfection (me)? Not so much. I threw mini fits, threatened to never do it again, you name it, I did/said it. Sometimes it’s hard to tell me from the toddlers! Ha!

Anyway, I didn’t end up quitting. And with each one I finished, they started improving (as did my attitude). They still didn’t look like my imagination said they should. But, they were nice!

I want to encourage you today to not give up on reaching your goals, no matter how big or small they are. For some of you, it may be making your bed. For others, it may be climbing Mt. Everest. Either way, just keep moving! You’ll get there eventually, if you refuse to give up.

You will most likely go through different stages of maturity as you reach your goal, much like I did. It’s not always easy to stay focused when things keep going wrong. But if we choose to keep our focus on Him, instead of the “impossible”, things will start to fall into place. Obviously, I have not perfected this, but I’m always working on it!

Here are two verses that I find comforting, and motivating!

Brothers and sisters, I do not consider myself yet to have taken hold of it. But one thing I do: Forgetting what is behind and straining toward what is ahead, I press on toward the goal to win the prize for which God has called me heavenward in Christ Jesus.
– Philippians 3:13-14

We all know that when there’s a race, all the runners bolt for the finish line, but only one will take the prize. When you run, run for the prize! Athletes in training are very strict with themselves, exercising self-control over desires, and for what? For a wreath that soon withers or is crushed or simply forgotten. That is not our race. We run for the crown that we will wear for eternity. So I don’t run aimlessly. I don’t let my eyes drift off the finish line. When I box, I don’t throw punches in the air. I discipline my body and make it my slave so that after all this, after I have brought the gospel to others, I will still be qualified to win the prize.
– 1 Corinthians 9:24-27

I will be praying for you all this week as you continue the journey of reaching your goals!

On a side note, would you all be lifting my brother, Matt, up in prayer? He’s been battling sickness after sickness, and now a virus that’s got him throwing up constantly. He’s been to the doctor twice with this latest virus, the ER is the next step should things not improve. He is really in need of a breakthrough. We know that one touch from the Father can make every symptom and sickness vanish. So we are believing for that today, and for a brand new immune system! He’s got a baby, and his wife is pregnant. So we are also believing for this sickness not to spread to the rest of the family. Thanks, friends!

Blessings,

Sarah

I’m a Coffee Bean by Choice

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Obstacles. Problems. Barriers. Hard choices. Life is full of them.

I want to encourage you today to turn the problems facing you into opportunities for victory. It’s a simple lesson in perspective. A choice. Yes: I will pursue victory. Or, No: I will let this problem overtake me.

It is my hope that when you’re presented with these choices, you will choose to say, “Yes! I will pursue victory! I will make the best of this situation!”

Enjoy today’s devotional story (below), I found it very inspiring!

Blessings,

Sarah

Yet in all these things we are more than conquerors through Him who loved us.
– Romans 8:37 NIV

————-

The Carrot, the Egg, and the Coffee Bean
By: Anonymous

A young woman went to her mother and told her about her life and how things were so hard for her. She did not know how she was going to make it and wanted to give up. She was tired of fighting and struggling.

It seemed that, as one problem was solved, a new one arose. Her mother took her to the kitchen. She filled three pots with water and placed each on a high fire. Soon the pots came to a boil. In the first, she placed carrots, in the second she placed eggs, and in the last she placed ground coffee beans.

She let them sit and boil, without saying a word. In about twenty minutes, she turned off the burners. She fished the carrots out and placed them in a bowl. She pulled the eggs out and placed them in a bowl. Then she ladled the coffee out and placed it in a bowl. Turning to her daughter, she asked, “Tell me, what do you see?”

“Carrots, eggs, and coffee,” the young woman replied. The mother brought her closer and asked her to feel the carrots. She did and noted that they were soft. She then asked her to take an egg and break it. After pulling off the shell, she observed the hard-boiled egg. Finally, she asked her to sip the coffee. The daughter smiled as she tasted its rich aroma. The daughter then asked, “What does it mean, mother?”

Her mother explained that each of these objects had faced the same adversity – boiling water – but each reacted differently. The carrot went in strong, hard and unrelenting. However, after being subjected to the boiling water, it softened and became weak.

The egg had been fragile. Its thin outer shell had protected its liquid interior. But, after sitting through the boiling water, its inside became hardened! The ground coffee beans were unique, however. After they were in the boiling water, they had changed the water.

“Which are you?” the mother asked her daughter. “When adversity knocks on your door, how do you respond? Are you a carrot, an egg, or a coffee bean?” Think of this: Which am I? Am I the carrot that seems strong but, with pain and adversity, do I wilt and become soft and lose my strength? Am I the egg that starts with a malleable heart, but changes with the heat? Did I have a fluid spirit but, after a death, a breakup, or a financial hardship, does my shell look the same, but on the inside am I bitter and tough with a stiff spirit and a hardened heart? Or am I like the coffee bean? The bean actually changes the hot water, the very circumstance that brings the pain. When the water gets hot, it releases the fragrance and flavour.

If you are like the bean, when things are at their worst, you get better and change the situation around you. When the hours are the darkest and trials are their greatest, do you elevate to another level? How do you handle adversity? Are you a carrot, an egg, or a coffee bean?

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