Sabbatical 2017 –

Hi friends!

I am currently on a sabbatical from the blogging world for the next few months (well, aside from book reviews). Honestly as resistant as I can be, this season of life is more needed than I could say.

Ways to stay connected, while I am away –

  • Gracefully Overcoming’s Facebook page is going through a study of its own. From now until Christmas, we are studying Psalm 119. Yes, that extremely long Psalm, you might have meant to study at some point.
  • And if that doesn’t grab your attention, Indoor Outreach is going through the book of Luke.

Feel free to pray for me, as I go through this season. I am loving my time away, but miss you all tremendously! Maybe, we can stay semi-connected on Facebook. =)

In Christ,

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Delayed Obedience {VOTD}

Occasionally, I get the tremendous opportunity to sit and write with a “Verse-of-the-Day”. Today’s “VOTD” is brought to us by BibleGateway. The blessing is – we are actually walking through Psalm 119 right now, through our Facebook page.

When I read today’s “VOTD,” it just really stood out to me. The Voice uses the word “procrastinate” versus “hesitating (CSB)”. Both involve some kind of delayed obedience, so keep that in mind as you read through this post.

I hurried, not hesitating to keep your commands (Ps. 119:60, CSB).

For one of my phone apps, I have a Bible reading alarm. While I have it set to remind me everyday to read my Bible, I wasn’t expecting its persistence. This alarm will not cease until I have successfully stopped and taken the time to read my Bible. It is deliberate and continues to notify me, unless I get right to the task and responsibility of drawing near to God and Bible reading.

If I was as faithful in living out God’s truths as the alarms on my phone, I would be in a far better place spiritually. I would have the heart’s desire to hurry toward our risen Lord Jesus and living out His truths – rather than dancing around my obedience to God.

We all would be in better spiritual shape, if we practiced immediate obedience.

When we delay in living out God’s Word, we need to look and see what is going on. Why aren’t we obeying God? Is it unwillingness, or the influence of something else – possibly sin?

As I consider my own delayed response, friend, I invite you to consider how you have fallen prey to a “delayed response” heart. Delaying to obey our great God in what He has taught us – which is a big deal, to be absolutely honest with you.

What is God calling you to do, but you have delayed in doing?

Maybe, it is obeying God’s calling you to write a book, write a friend a note, in tithing when you are barely making ends meet, how you view a specific circumstance you are in, or something else entirely.

“As soon as he was sensible of his duty, he immediately complied with it; he consulted not with flesh and blood, but at once yielded a cheerful obedience to the commands of God (John Gill).”

“So what has God told you to do that you haven’t started doing yet? What are you waiting for? God has your best interests at heart. Go ahead and do what he’s told you to do (Rick Warren Devotional).”

I have a writing project on my heart, to which I need to give myself. I need to find moments of wellness, but more importantly the room in my heart to be willing to do this “God thing”. It is a project God obviously has me working on – for a reason. I just need to honor God in this, even when it might be a difficult task. What about you, my friend?

Praise Before Panic {Inspiring Women}

Hi friends! For the months of May/June, we will be using a reading plan given to us by Sweet to the Soul Ministries. Feel free to stroll through their Facebook page and blog. They even have a journaling kit and Bible study for this month’s plan.

We can apply today’s Scripture to any area of life. While I was contemplating on if I was well enough prepared to write on this Scripture, I now know this is an important truth for any area of life.

Also it is not good for a person to be without knowledge, And he who hurries with his feet [acting impulsively and proceeding without caution or analyzing the consequences] sins (misses the mark). – Prov. 19:2, AMP

As I previously mentioned, I underwent a medical test. Any medical test can have the ability to be over-analyzed. I am thankful for the reminder to spend time considering my spiritual needs too. Before my big test, I sought out how to remain encouraged and Spirit-filled.

Typically, I prepare for specifics in regards to medical tests – by choosing a Scripture to focus on. Without this plan, I would be left in a dangerous spot. Without choosing to deliberately focus on our risen Lord, I might be unfriendly to the medical staff or inconsolable.

As I write this, I am in awe of what our God can do. Just as it is not good to act impulsively or fail to plan, we have to remember the goodness of our Lord. When I was placed into the MRI machine, I was not feeling very encouraged. To God be all glory, honor, and praise: He placed an ideal song on my heart. I didn’t belt out lyrics or move, but it encouraged my heart so much.

“Fearless” by Travis Ryan is likely one of the best songs to heart sing, in the midst of a medical test that is as tight in space as a coffin. It gets me a little bit emotional as I share this, because heart singing praise music isn’t something I would have expected. This was the best way God could have met me in the midst of my great need of remembering His presence and promise to stay with me.

Fearless, make us fearless | Give us courage for You are with us | Fearless, make us fearless | Come and mark us with Your boldness

God is in the details of our lives. While He was in total control during my medical test, I don’t want to consider my joy level had I not prepared.

Friends, let’s be lovers of Jesus who want to prepare and remember that we are forever His!

We need to seek His face and act wisely. Whenever we act impulsively, it can draw us away from our Lord and cause us to sin.

This is a testimony of how God meets us right where we are. Even in deep needs, God will meet us and act on our behalf – through His Holy Spirit.

Soul Tied {Inspiring Women}

Hi friends! For the months of May/June, we will be using a reading plan given to us by Sweet to the Soul Ministries. Feel free to stroll through their Facebook page and blog. They even have a journaling kit and Bible study for this month’s plan.

Yesterday I underwent a medical test, and my body shared its unwellness with me and others. While the outcome of my test is unknown, I am reminded of the eternal hope found in our risen Lord Jesus Christ.

The woman left her water jar beside the well and ran back to the village, telling everyone, “Come and see a man who told me everything I ever did! Could he possibly be the Messiah?” (John 4:28-29, NLT)

The hope of Jesus Christ remains strong, despite our earthly circumstances. Friends, we can become women who are made complete in Jesus Christ.

This Woman

Jesus spoke with a woman, known only by her past sins. Jesus offered her the same gift He offers to us – eternal hope, forgiveness of our sins, and an identity of being His!

We know. . . God loves you and has chosen you to be his own people (1 Thess. 1:4).

Jesus met her in the unlikely place. As she searched for drinking water, her soul finally found what it was searching for: Jesus Christ, the One who cleanses us and redefines our identity – based on who He is.

She didn’t know what {or who} was waiting for her, as she went to the well. This heavy hearted woman went to the well at noon time, which was an ideal time to gather water without the presence and chatter of other women. She knew the glances well, because everyone knew she was a woman with a scandalous past.

This precious woman left behind her past, as her satisfied soul lept for joy and entered an exclusive relationship with Jesus.

From this moment on, she would stop running from others. She would quit forcing her eyes to look no further than the sandals on her feet. Instead of hiding away like an embarrassment to God and others, she did something quite different:

She became a woman whose heart was found in Jesus, her Savior, and told others about the God they had to come and see for themselves.

We have our own past, but remember Jesus can use these moments and bring glory to the Father. While I don’t know your story, I know our Lord. He can bring a testimony out of our mess, and fill it with His eternal hope.

During my test, all I could do is pray in the presence of distractions and remember “Jesus loves me this I know, for the Bible tells me so. . . to Him we belong. . . They are weak, but He is strong.”.

Remember, friends. Souls tied to King Jesus can leap for joy and have a desire to tell others about Him. How can we tie our souls to His?

Let us spend time in prayer and worship.

In Christ,

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Keeping Promises {Inspiring Women}

Starting Monday, July 24, the Facebook page for Gracefully Overcoming will begin reading and studying Psalm 119.

(Psst: This blog post is part of our series – Inspiring Women using a reading plan given to us by Sweet to the Soul Ministries.)

Psalm 119:1 reminds us of the truth that God’s people are called blessed (happy, fortunate, favored) when we enter a relationship with our risen Lord Jesus Christ and follow in His ways.

How happy (or blessed) are those whose way is blameless, who walk according to the Lord’s instruction! (CSB)

The Blameless

The blameless walk with personal integrity. As we consider and walk in an exclusive relationship with our heavenly Father through His Son Jesus Christ, let us continue to think about how we live. Let us remember Ephesians 5, where we are reminded to follow the example of our risen Lord Jesus Christ.

Exemplary

In Psalm 15, we are given specific examples of living in a blameless way.

O Lord, who shall sojourn in your tent? Who shall dwell on your holy hill? He who walks blamelessly and does. . . (Ps. 15:1-2a, ESV).

It is within this specific Psalm, where we find out what one who wholeheartedly follows the Lord does. For the “Inspiring Women” series, we are pointed to verse 4.

Let’s create our working definition for the “blameless” believer. It is a person who clings to and follows Jesus Christ as Savior and Lord over their life, and strives to allow God to be proclaimed in the private and public aspect of their life.

in whose eyes a vile person is despised, but who honors those who fear the Lord; who swears to his own hurt and does not change (ESV).

Friends, sisters, the life of inspiring others is seen as we hold to what we know about our risen Lord Jesus Christ and the life – to which we have been called.

The Transformation Life

While we are a work in progress until Christ’s return (see Phil. 1:6), let us strive to allow God to define what is right and wrong. Our moral compass isn’t determined by society or how likable the girl down the street is. Even when we are pressured to compromise, we need to hold onto what God says is right and wrong.

May we “keep [our] promises even when it hurts (NLT).”

Let’s choose today to remain faithful to our risen Lord, and remember His Word stands as absolute truth. Even if everyone is against the Bible and God’s truth, it has not changed. It will still be true and be our instructions for how to live.

Friends, our best way to inspire – comes from honoring what is right in God’s own eyes and exposing the lies we are confronted with.

Our risen Lord Jesus Christ – is what matters. It is the Bible and our own faith in Christ, that determines how we live. Let’s be Jesus girls who choose to trust and diligently obey Him, because we know He is worthy!

In Christ,

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