February Goals {& My “Why”}

In December, my goal was to practice Titus 2:5 in my own life. Honestly? =] Still working on it. Some days, it is more reflected in my attitude and choices than others. To add onto Titus 2:5, Philippians 1:27 is this month’s focus.

Women are “ to be self-controlled, pure, working at home, kind, and submissive to their own husbands, that the word of God may not be reviled (Titus 2:5, ESV).”

Click here for full passage.

“Above all else, you must live in a way that brings honor to the good news about Christ. . . (Phil. 1:27, CEV).”

Do

  • Continue to cultivate a plant based way of eating, which is helping POTS a lot! My goal is to get back on track 100%. It’s been four months, but I can keep going strong and get better at it. IE) Make sure to have good food on hand like baked sweet potatoes. Prepare for intense temptation, when out.
  • Continue our Pressing On Toward Faithfulness study and blog series. God is speaking loudly through these sacred time, and showing me His presence. How could I miss this?!? 
  • My #OneGoal is still the same: to draw nearer to the Lord, despite health “flare up’s”. I need to keep “showing up” for this quality time with my loving Savior.

Learn

I want to learn how to live a stronger faith in our Risen Lord Jesus Christ, despite the hardships I face.

Read

I have several books on my “to read” list!

Blessed are the Misfits by Brant Hanson
Anchored In by Micah Maddox
Get Lost by Dannah Gresh

Be . . better

I just feel like things are messier than they need to be. These are my goals for Feb, and I want them to lead me into a closer relationship with the Lord. Things just feel messy right now due to poor choices.

Yet, I know the Lord Jesus is here. He is reminding to just not give up. He is giving me the strength to keep moving and tearfully cry out to Him. He is reminding to just hang onto Him and His precious words! . . . Because He is working in the midst of the pain.

Lately, my heart has been holding onto Psalm 23, where the Lord declares that He is my Shepherd and He is the One to restore my achy soul.

The Lord is my shepherd; I have what I need.
He lets me lie down in green pastures; he leads me beside quiet waters.
He renews my life; he leads me along the right paths for his name’s sake.
Even when I go through the darkest valley, I fear no danger, for you are with me; your rod and your staff—they comfort me (Ps. 23:1-4, CSB).

My why is simple: If I can feel better, I want to. I want to be able to function at a better level. And if routines and way of eating help me to do this, then, I want to do this.

This is partly about wellness, but it is about something else too: Obedience. I want to honor the Lord in what I say and do, including eating, reading, and all things.

In Him,

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December Goals

It is a little late, but “better late than never”.

Do {Daily}

  • Continue to work on choosing allergy free vegetarian dishes.
  • Exercise, while listening to limitations.
  • Keep reading and studying the Word of God (Bible).
  • Welcome silence, to create a prayerful environment.

Learn

This month, my heart’s goal is set on Titus. I need to learn and apply Titus 2:5.

In the book of Titus, we are reminded of God’s greatness and how He wants us to live out our faith in our lives (see 2:3-5).

For this month, I want to lean on the Lord and learn how to serve within the walls of my family’s home. This is done as I keep up on housework (dishes, laundry, picking up, decluttering) – trying to give God my best in this area.

“These older women must train the younger women to love their husbands and their children, to live wisely and be pure, to work in their homes, to do good, and to be submissive to their husbands. Then they will not bring shame on the word of God (Titus 2:4-5, NLT).”

Read

My hope is to keep reading each day. While I have many books to choose from, I am going to limit my goal to a few specific books.

  • In the Middle of the Mess (Sheila Walsh)
  • Loved Baby (Sarah Philpott)
  • Connected (Erin Davis)

Also, I want to keep reading and soaking up the truths from the book of Psalms.

Be

If there was one word for this month, it would be “effective”. I want my life to count. Through eating better, exercising, and trying to stay focused on the Lord by living out His Word, I want to make a difference in my health, family, and life.

Dear friend, what are some of the things you hope to focus on doing or being for the month of December?

In Christ,

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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.

Impact #2

My last impact entry was about 2 months ago. A lot has happened in that time. Health scare, which was relieved by a less serious health problem. Good news! (Bad news is: POTS is the reason for worsening symptoms. All before Spring.)

Feeling – Lately, I have felt a myraid of things. Home Sick. Loneliness. Frustration. (Dis)Contentment. Peace. Joy. Laughter. Mmmm, variety of emotions. Good, Bad, and in between. POTS has been rough, but I am still here. So, that is good news. I am not hooked up to a hospital bed with monitors. I am finding joy in unlikely places of chronic illness.

While all days aren’t joy-infused, I have the hope of my Savior Jesus Christ to remind me who I am. . . in spite of illness. Looking forward to Heaven, but trying to make the most of my time on earth to do something worthwhile.

Studying – Since my last impact, I have nearly finished studying 1 & 2 Thessalonians. Last week, I began the book of James. I am really enjoying it. One of today’s verse hit home for me, and is found at the end of this blog post. I have been reading and studying using The Living Bible found on Bible Gateway, which is a paraphrase like the Message. I am absolutely loving it! It is soo nice to have the privilege to open up the Bible in a new translation, using different wording, but having the same meaning. The Word of God is coming alive!

Reading – I am not quite sure that I am reading anything right now, since I have gotten out of the habit of reading actual books. Desiring God and reading the Bible in chronological order (that things happened) is what I am reading. Our church is reading the Bible together in a specific schedule. We have gone through Job, Genesis, Exodus, and are in Leviticus. Even with the audio Bible, my reading track record isn’t perfection but who says it has to be?

Listening To –

Celebrating – Many things.

  • Jesus is the top celebration. He loves me, and stays with me no matter what!
  • Doctors who care about their patients.
  • Good music that speaks God’s truths
  • Seeing how God can revive my broken spirit.

Loving – the gift of streaming biblical teachings, for anyone to hear the Gospel of Jesus Christ and the biblical truths we need to know.

Praying – for my health, family, and a new blog series idea.

Holding Onto – Jesus! I am holding onto Jesus. Jesus is the One who is holding me, through all of life’s storms.

But when I am afraid, I will put my confidence in you. Yes, I will trust the promises of God… (Ps. 56:3-4)

Other Scriptures – James 1:9 (found below)

A Christian who doesn’t amount to much in this world should be glad, for he is great in the Lord’s sight (James 1:9).

Two New Opportunities (For the New Year)

Hey friends,

Welcome to 2017! I have TWO NEW THINGS to share with you all today. These are some pretty nice ways to get “plugged in”. Even if you are a part of a church family, it would still be a great way to get spiritually fed this year. Bear with me, as I share the details of both.

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Picture from Free Images

Bible Reading Challenge is the first big opportunity I have to share with you all. While it started on the 1st, it’s not too late to join in. The goal is simple: to get into the Word of God and to encourage one another to keep spending more time in God’s Word.

The reading plan is a combination of reading the Bible in the order that things happened, and also reading daily Psalms. For the Bible Challenge, I have set up a blog to share the thoughts/posts and a facebook place to help my friends have easy access to the daily reading schedule. Just five days in, I have already gotten a bit behind and all. But you know what, I am really enjoying this Bible challenge. I am enjoying having the opportunity to just sit at the Lord’s feet and listen to my audio Bible as I remember how God has worked on behalf of His people – and – how God is our awesome Protector and Defender who initiates a relationship with us through His Son Jesus

Our Nine Week Bible Study is next on the agenda. I feel a bit scatter brained right now, so bear with me – as I write up this post. I am looking at my already higher-than-normal word count, and hoping I don’t miss details. While I know I haven’t shared much details about our new blog study, there has been a reason for that. These past few months have been crazy and hard as far as my health and symptoms go. I have wanted to make sure I would be up for this, as I do put a lot of time and attention into each of these studies (or I try to). Anyway, I am ready to share. =)

Are you ready for this? We will be studying the Thessalonians. Both books are included in this Scripture Writing – Bible Study on this blog. Honestly, I have already begun this study and am on week 3. So, I can say we will grow a lot. God is speaking to me in really good ways. He is reminding me of His presence. So, I invite you to join me in our study of Meeting the Thessalonians!

 

meeting_the_thessalo_cover_for_kindle

Our new study will be a bit different as far as its format. I believe this will make it a better study for both you the reader and myself.

The Thessalonians study has been an amazing ride, one ride I am definitely ready to share with you all!

Big changes for our study –

  • It’s a “weekday” format – meaning five lessons per week.
  • A focus on memorizing Scripture.
  • Our weekly blog posts will continue, but perhaps only 1-2 posts per week.
  • A posted reading plan for those who cannot afford the journal (I couldn’t get one either, so don’t feel bad).

Also, there are changes within the journal too. What are some of those changes?

  • A weekly prayer sheet to help us jump start our week in prayer.
  • A reflection questionnaire to help us end each week well, and prepare for the following week.
  • A space to actually write out the memory verse, along with tips to help us memorize Scripture.

God is going to do some very amazing things in the course of our study. It will be 9 weeks of honest conversations with God and seeking Him in His Word! Look forward to having you join us.

We will begin our study on January 29!

Psst a little secret: We will begin studying the book of Romans after this study in the same format. We will take bite-size portions of Scripture to meditate and focus on, studying Romans over several Bible study eight week “sessions”.

Click here to support Gracefully Overcoming, by purchasing our Meeting the Thessalonians Scripture Writing Journal!

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