FREE

Imagine Freedom

Imagine freedom from fear or anxiety.

What does it look like in your mind?

Have you ever experienced that before?

Freedom is possible with God. Personally, I know the struggle you may be facing today. You feel like the freedom you so desperately want is just out of reach or God only has that for someone else.

We tend to believe the lies of the enemy instead of looking at the wonderful aspects of our lives that God has given us on a daily basis.

I understand.

I did the same thing for so long. I doubted His love for me, even though I could look around and see all the beautiful aspects of my life.

Yet, the one aim of my life seemed so out of reach.

Freedom from fear, anxiety and agoraphobia was nowhere to be found; or so it seemed.

Real difficulties can be overcome, it is only the imaginary ones that are unconquerable. Click to Tweet

Nothing is impossible with God, even when we doubt or feel unworthy.

Luke 1:37 For with God nothing is impossible.

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God has a plan, even when we don’t understand. After all of my struggles, I have a story to tell. Our stories help others know that they are not alone.

Share your story here today. What has God healed your from or helped you overcome?

Nothing is lost.

Let me pray for you:

Lord, nothing is lost in your sight. You know the beginning and the end of our lives. We have pain but that can be used for your glory if we follow your leading. I pray that anyone that is struggling today, that they can find a sense of peace by listening for your voice. You speak and we listen. Help us to quiet ourselves. Help us to seek your face and to see the wonder in even the small freedoms we have.

Linking up with

Simply Beth

Juana Mikels

The Beauty in His Grip

Messy Marriage

Miracles

Do you believe in miracles?

Have you ever personally experienced a miracle?

How would you define a miracle?

Dictionary.com defines it as follows:

1. an effect or extraordinary event in the physical world that surpasses all known human or natural powers and is ascribed to a supernatural cause.
2. such an effect or event manifesting or considered as a work of God.
3.a wonder; marvel.
Miracles
If we take the time each day to slow down and look at our lives, as well as those close to us, I think we would see a miracle.
Did you wake up today?
Did you drive to and from work without an accident?
Did your children arrive home safely from school?
Is your home safe, clean and full of love?
Are you living a life that is beyond what you ever dreamed or imagined?
I would say each and every one of those are miracles in a small or large way.
God does amazing things for us each and every day that we take for granted.
We somehow believe that we are guaranteed safety, security and a life full of promise.
Jeremiah 29:11
“For I know the plans I have for you, declares the Lord, plans to prosper you and to not harm you, plans to give you hope and a future. “
Of course, God promised that in HIS word but we also live in a fallen world where life can become something much worse than the promises God has said He has for us.
I think of all of the years I wasted being full of fear, anxiety and eventually agoraphobia.
How much life I missed.
Sad. šŸ˜¦
I prayed.
I begged.
I hoped.
I gave up.
I dreamed of more.
I felt lost and alone.
Yet, God had a bigger plan.
A plan for a MIRACLE
What miracle are you needing today?
A big miracle?
A huge miracle?
miracles
Don’t let the enemy convince you that God doesn’t care or isn’t listening.
He hasn’t forgotten you today, sweet friend.
He is all ears and His heart is connected to yours.
Nothing is beyond HIS reach; even the miracle waiting in the wings.
Keep Standing
Keep Praying
Keep Moving
Praying for you and your miracle. If you have a miracle story to share, please comment and let me know. I would love to hear.

Captivity

” I will be found by you, declares the Lord, and will bring you back from captivity.”

Jeremiah 29:14

I love this verse in the Bible.Ā  How comforting to know that God will bring us back from the captivity we find ourselves as well as from those who have held us captive.

Captivity according to Dictionary.com:

the state or period of being held, imprisoned, enslaved, or confined.

When I think about the word captivity, I can come up with several scenarios where the word captivity would apply.
Such as:
Being held as a prisioner
Being held as a slave
free cage
But I also think about the lives of many struggling Christians who are being help captive by the enemy. Maybe in small ways but also in huge ways. Think about those you know or maybe think about your own life. What do you struggle to be set free from? Addictions? Sexual Sin? Lying?
Rejection from someone/many? Fear? Anxiety? Agoraphobia? Gambling?
Personally, I can relate to being held captive to something not of my own doing, yet that is exactly where I found myself for over 20 years. Agoraphobia took over my life and became my best friend. I knew what to expect in relation to it, yet the outside world overwhelmed me. Thinking of traveling away from home would cause the panic and anxiety to run full force; way beyond my control. The fear and panic were easily feigned off when I would once again give into the enemies control to hold me captive once again.
This scenario went on and on. Over and over. Never changing much. I would so desperately want to be free from the chains holding me hostage, yet I could see no way out of the depths of fear.
Yet, when I was ready and the Lord was willing to hear my desperate cries, I was set free from all of the chains holding me hostage. Nothing will stop me now. Oh, I won’t lie. Often I can feel the enemy trying to gain his power back again, yet the battle is not over. The enemy will never win this battle.
” Let us break their chains and throw off their shackles. ” Psalm 2:3
The last time we took a family trip to San Antonio, as we were driving home I said, ” Well, little devil, once again you lost that battle.”. That is what I will continue to say, even in the face of fear and anxiety. I will continue to move forward in the call God has placed upon my life to help others struggling with fear, anxiety and agoraphobia, or those who have lost loved ones to suicide or murder, just as I have.
I hope you will read an older post from when I was first set free from fear.
God literally gave me the verse I discuss in the Feeding on Ashes post.
” God called you out of darkness into his wonderful light. ” 1 Peter 2:9
Today, I want to offer you hope that healing can and will come. God has a wonderful plan for your life and that plan includes freedom from captivity and bondage. Don’t settle for anything less than God’s best.

Step Out Today

Risk Requires Trust

Do you Trust God enough to handle whatever you are facing?

It is hard to face change, especially when we get so accustomed to having things a certain way.

We wake up the same time everyday and we go to bed the same time.

We eat the same food for breakfast and we drive the same route to work.

All of that is perfectly fine, but how about today we take a chance and risk doing something different today.

Go a different route to work. Eat something different for breakfast.

Change is necessary and so is

RISK

Risking is difficult as well. I know personally how difficult it is to RISK and CHANGE.

After years of living with fear, anxiety and agoraphobia…

I am now FREE.

God set me free in August 2012

Risking is possible

Change is necessary

and

Freedom is Possible

Today, take a chance to make a change in your everyday life but also take RISK to get FREE from whatever is holding you back.

Freedom is sweet and God is amazing.

What is your story?

Are you ready to RISK and CHANGE?

Step Out Today and LIVE BIG FOR GOD

Linking up with Simply Beth

Journey to Freedom

I have been reading a great book called ” The Unburdened Heart” by Suzanne Eller.Ā  The book is well written and offers very good insight on the subject of finding freedom to forgive.

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This is a topic that I certainly needed to read at this point in my life. I have not always been a very good forgiver.. LOL.

How about you?

Do you struggle with forgiveness or does this come easily to you?

Suzanne offers some very valuable information throughout the book but one particular word she focused on really stuck with me.

The word is aphiemi which means to:

1. Send away

2. to let it die

3. to exchange for something else

4. to give up a debt

5. to forgive.

Suzanne discusses how when we use this word in relation to forgiveness it means we leave anger to find joy.

This is how I have felt much of the last two years. For most of my life I had held onto such anger and unforgiveness due to the way my biological family had always treated me and my family. I knew from as early as 4 or 5 years old that I was not really wanted. My parents had always made this very clear in the way I was treated but also the words spoken. Of course, this led to years of feeling so unworthy in every way and having no self-confidence. Relationships were damaged because how can you love someone else when you have no idea how to love yourself. You certainly have no capability of allowing another person to truly love you because they don’t know the real “you” like your biological family does. This was the cycle I found myself in for years and year.

I would try to be a good wife, mother and friend but I really had no clue as how to make that happen. I knew that I loved my children and husband, but until I came to accept the fact that God loved me for ME, then I would never be able to love my children or husband properly either. This was the constant battle because I heard from my parents and siblings over and over for 40 years how crazy I was because of the anxiety and panic attacks, but also how big a mistakes I was in general. I didn’t see myself as a mistake but I always believed what was spoken over me and my life. Evil and malicious words were the normal part of those relationships, so that is what I believed.

My relationships struggled because I didn’t see myself as anyone of value. How could anyone else love me when my own parents and siblings didn’t?

This was the inward struggle. Yet, after reading Suzanne’s book I have come to understand that by the neglect and abandonment of my family repeatedly over my lifetime, I had no way of having a clear view or understanding of God and HIS love for me. It distorted everything I did or didn’t do. Nothing was clear because my view of God was unclear. Until that became clear, no other relationships would work nor would I find the freedom to be myself.

The two are connected

and there is no separating them.

Without our view of God being correct, our lives will constantly spin out of control and all of our relationships will suffer.

The past two years I have learned more about myself than I had the previous 44 years.

One thing I have learned is that God loves me, designed me and has a great plan for my life.
Without Him in my life, I am nothing.

I am thankful that my heart is becoming more and more free from un-forgiveness and finding happiness to the fullest.

Isn’t God good?

I am thankful that God did not give up on me even when I gave up on myself.

I would highly recommend this book by Suzanne Eller.

Year in Review

winter tree

A year of beauty but also a year of pain.

That has been my life.

Relationships fail

Pain is inflicted; whether intentional or unintentional

Harm is done that cannot be forgetten

Things will change whether we want them to or not.

But one thing that will never change is the power of God in our lives.

I am finally free.

Free from anxiety, fear and agoraphobia.

God has changed my life in so many ways.

Confidence

Self-Esteem

Love

Faith

Hope

Joy

Peace

And FREEDOM

Finally Free

Comfort

Comfort

As a Christian, I have faced times where I often wondered if anyone cared. Where I felt so alone and wish that someone would reach out to ask me how I am doing.

I have always had to be the “strong” one even in times where I was falling apart or my life seemed to be falling apart.

Time of loss and heartache where I never felt I would see the sun ever shine in my life again. When I lost my grandparents to murder/suicide, I really never felt I would ever be the same. Loss so indescribable, yet it was my life.

Comfort was no where to be found because each family member was facing the same pain and loss. Then, I had others within our small town that just had no idea of how to help or what to say to COMFORT.

Comfort

So, I was all alone or felt that way at least.

Trying to be strong, but often falling apart at the seams.

Wishing my life would end as well. So much pain, yet I had no clue as how to overcome the deep loss and emotional pain I was facing, and all of my family was facing. We were all barely hanging on.

Why is it that in such desperate times, the church community is often some that causes the deepest wounds?

I would love to have had someone reach out their hand and offer to listen or even to give me a hug. Offer a hot meal. Offer to pay for counseling for my children or myself. Offer to spend the evening with me while my husband worked overnight at the police department. Offer to not speak words that would hurt, but that was often the norm.

I had one really “well-known” Christian man from my church tell me the day my grandparents died, that I needed to “quit crying and screaming because I wasn’t acting like a very good Christian.” Then another said that ” maybe this is a conclusion to an already bad relationship”.

How do we tell ourselves that as a Christian that somehow gives us the right to hurt another person struggling or needing a friend?

I can think of many instances where I have seen the ugliness from the church, when I initially went to the church for comfort.

Certainly not what I found.

I have found

condemnation

comparison

gossip

jealousy

favoritism

on and on

We as Christians need to remember that we are representing the ONE TRUE COMFORTER

and when we act as such, we fail in our efforts to portray HIM in a positive light as well. Our lives are to be a witness to the power of the LORD in our lives, yet when we act unbecoming we demean all HE has done for us and our lives.

I have faced ridicule for having anxiety, fear and agoraphobia as well. My son has been gossiped about supposedly being gay. (doesn’t matter either way because he is my son) but is it the right place for this to happen. This same son no longer goes to church because of the pain inflicted. As a Christian, when we lash out, we hurt. When we speak evil about someone, we hurt. When we choose to ignore, we hurt.

(Are you reading this????)

We hurt others but we also hurt our Lord.

We hurt ourselves as well.

Why do we want to act so foolishly in the Lord’s eyes and the eyes of others?

Today, I really want to offer a word about being so petty and malicious. God expects better from us but we should expect more from ourselves as well.

Comfort comes from the LORD and for that I am thankful.

He loves me and wants the best for me.

Lord, I come to you to ask you to soften our hearts to the pain we often inflict on others; whether intentional or unintentional. You want us to love others and offer a helping hand to others.

LOVE doesn’t hurt

Linking up with:

Simply Beth

My Daily Walk in His Grace

Women 2 Women Ministries

 

Live Now

live now ferris wheel2

Are you living now?

Or living in the future?

Or living in the past?

You can’t really LIVE if you are living in the past or in the future.

All we are guaranteed is today. Today is the only time God has given us. We have no ties to the past because we can’t change anything that has happened or anything that has been said. We can apologize and try to make amends, but in reality we can only live for today. Our past has no power to control us or our lives unless we give the past the power. Our lives are more than our past and more than our future.

God has placed a special plan and purpose into each of our lives, yet often we focus so much on “finding” that purpose, we forget to live in the present moment.

Moments where memories are lost. MomentsĀ  where we often forget to appreciate what we have and where we are in our lives. Maybe we aren’t exactly where we wish we were at this point in our lives, but by always focusing on the “greener” pastures, we forget that we have so much to be thankful for.

clock image

It is time to live for me. After living a life so focused on my anxiety, fear and agoraphobia for over 15 years, I have decided that life is to be enjoyed. In the process of “finding” myself after being hidden for so long, I have realized that special moments are in every aspect of my life if I will take the time to look. In the small things such as a wet kiss on the nose from my dog, Penny to huge moments of having a big hug from my son Chance. Each moment means the world to me because for so long, I lived in a bubble of fear and anxiety. I didn’t take time to enjoy those special moments. Life just was plain overwhelming…

But today, I am in a better place, free from Fear. How about you? What are you doing to LIVE NOW?

Take the time to focus on the small and big moments. God gives us each day to live. Remember HE loved us and gave His only son to die for our sins. He wants you and I to really LIVE.

Deep Waters

Deep Waters1

The deep waters can overwhelm us, yet God is calling us to trust Him to cleanse us in the deep.

Deep waters

of

Pain, hurt, loss, joy, peace, fear, hope, uncertainty

YET

He is there even in the deep waters

The waters are for our healing and our benefit. Yet, it still hurts at times because of the refining of our lives.

Refining of our lives requires walking into the deep waters with Christ. It will not be fun, nor easy but in the end we will be better people.

We can then be healed, set free, happy and able to focus on the calling God has called us to do. Often the waters must be stepped into fully and deeply to find ourselves and the real YOU..

I know when God called me into the DEEP, it required a huge amount of trust because I had always lived in fear of the unknown. The waters of healing and freedom required an amount of trust in the Lord that I had never had to have before. Living with fear was easier than stepping into the waters with God.

I had trusted Jesus with my heart in 1977 yet life had many challenges from that point forward. The challenges kept me from living a full life, yet after walking into the deep waters with God, my life is happy, peaceful and free from fear. God’s healing touch was in the deep waters.

Today, don’t be afraid of stepping into the deep.

He is there waiting to refine, repair and restore.

Nothing is impossible with God. Matthew 19:26

Linking up

Simply Beth

Beauty in His Grip

My Daily Walk inĀ  His Grace

Juana Mikels

Violet Imperfection

Women to Women

Choose to Believe

Choose to Believe

We all have choices to make each day.

Choices to believe

or not to believe

Choices whether to love or hate

Forgive or hold onto to unforgiveness

Grow or remain stagnant

Live or Die

Believe in God

or

Deny God

For me, many of these are easier than others. One that will never change will be to BELIEVE IN GOD. I have faced 3 suicides, a murder, abuse, neglect, car wrecks, anxiety, fear, agoraphobia, loss of jobs, friendships, as well as other tragedies, but through it all I have never stopped believing in God. My faith has been shaken but no denying God has stepped in more than once to protect, guide, and love me through it all.

Believe in God

Even when it is hard

Even when you want to give up

Lean into HIM

Praying for you today. Lean into HIM and HIS love for you. It is unconditional and full of peace if you trust HIM and HIS plan. HIS plan will always be best. Life happens but nothing is out of HIS control.

CHOOSE TO BELIEVE

Linking up with:

Simply Beth

My Daily Walk in His Grace