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Friday, January 15, 2016

Pray the Psalms {download}

It took me over a year to off-and-on complete this "study" but for me it was by far THEE most spiritually fulfilling prayer walk and journey to knowing and truly loving the Lord. I first wrote about Praying Through Psalms HERE, and I still am so passionate about it, I can't wait to share this resource and then start again on my own!  

It's incredible starting the day 
1. Being reminded of who God is
2. Laying my flaws and sin before Him and thanking God for my Savior
3. Praising God for all He's done in my life (big and small)
4. Reflecting on my daily walk, surrendering my burdens and requests to Him. 

I am weak, but He is Strong. He is faithful, loving, and true. Less of me, more of You, God. Fill me. 
Another component to this is writing out these scriptures. I love keeping a prayer journal. It documents my spiritual journey and I frequently use it as a resource and go back to find various verses and ideas.  And taking the time to write scripture helps it soak in, and I can meditate on and highlight key words as I go along. 
 This is NOT a schedule. It does not have to be done every day. Reading God's Word should never be something that you stress over or just mark off a list.  Like I said, I did this off and on over the course of more than a year. But it was something I always loved and needed to come back to. At times when I was lost or hurting or just spiritually unmotivated, this is what recentered me. Prayer. The Psalms are so real and so raw. A book of wailing, desperation, pleas, and also a book praising, dancing, and singing, and everything in between. It is rich in the truths of God's faithfulness, love, and salvation.

Comment below:
* What is your favorite book of the Bible and why?
* What do you turn to when you are feeling spiritually unmotivated and walking through difficult times?
* What do your prayer habits look like?

Sunday, January 3, 2016

2016: {Breathe}

I have a love-hate relationship.
With myself.
(Don't we all.) 
I know that I have God-given talents and gifts.
I know that I am loved and occasionally appreciated.
I know that I have purpose and mission.
But sometimes, I really hate how I am....

I am driven and motivated.
I am goal-oriented and organized.
I am determined, fully committed, focused, and intense.
But because of all those very qualities I am also very anxious and tightly wound.
I freak out over little things, I stress, I snap and explode.
I frequently over-react, because to me everything is extremely important, even when it's not.
And it unfortunately affects everyone around me.

I have a very difficult time just letting loose and enjoying a moment, and not being critical or gripped by fear.

It hit me when our family went sledding this past weekend. Sledding is an activity that can end badly in a flash and I was overwhelmed by fear....
Of someone sliding down at a diagonal and crashing into the brick bathroom building at the bottom of the hill.
Or wiping out and then getting slammed by the next sledder.
Or flying off a sled and busting your head or face in a tumble.
To me they were valid fears because I stood at the bottom of the snow hill watching many of these events happen repeatedly.  My chest was in knots, as I continually shouted for the kids to Be careful, Watch out, Wait.
When all I really wanted was to laugh and enjoy making memories sledding together as a family.

Oh how I want this.

SO, I want to spend some time this 2016 to learn some strategies for overcoming anxious situations, to trust in God's provision, and to {BREATHE} before reacting. I want to feel a constant stream of renewing and peace, to let a wave of calmness wash over me instead of exploding on my precious loves. Slowly, continuously, BREATHE.... ...... .....