Thanksgiving

A few things I’m thankful for this morning:

-forest green high-waited jeans 🙂

-silver padded vest 🙂

-brown suede shoes 🙂

-airstream coffee mug

-cute husband <3

-zucchini noodles 😀

-Trader Joes harvest sauce 🙂

-autumn weather

-giant pumpkins

-goodness, faithfulness and provision of God. I can’t even being to write everything He has done for me.

-vision of the future and what’s to come!

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I woke up feeling excited this morning. Excited about getting some stuff done. Excited about making some plans. About getting outside on this beautiful day. Excited about future prospects and opportunities. About changes. About new beginnings. About starting fresh.

Thank you Lord. For teaching me.

You are not done yet. The good work that you begun in me WILL be perfected.

Have an awesome day everyone.

xoxox

V

At Peace

I am at peace. Because I am in Peace. You are Peace. The Prince of Peace.

Thank you for protecting me from every storm.

Thank you for sustaining me even during the drought. Even during the heat. I will not fear the terror of night. I will not fear the arrow that flies by day. I will not fear the pestilence.

I find shade and refuge in your shadow, O Lord.

You are my hope. You are my foundation. You are my refuge. I hide myself in the shadow underneath your wing. Thank you for caring for me and for loving me. You are the God Who Sees.

You are the deliverer. You have given me Life.

You are Holy and mighty. You are magnificent, perfect and pure.

You are caring and generous. You are the great provider, sustainer and lover of my soul.

You can bear fruit in the desert places and even make water come out of a rock. Nothing is impossible for you <3

Thank you for always allowing my faith to be tested and for making me resilient to all of the unknowns around me. Why would I focus on the unknowns when the “knowns”, the truths about you are so powerful, life giving and refreshing?

You are a breath of fresh air that we are invited to breath over and over again. You are who upholds us. You hold us together. You hold all of our cells together.

Your beautiful creation is a testament to your intelligence, artistry and magnificence.

You are in absolute perfect control and I thank you Lord for being the guide of my life. My light. You are my light. The light that guides my feet. I absolutely need you and simply ask you to direct my thoughts. Holy Spirit, help me take my thoughts captive and make them obedient to you.

Help me not dwell on the what-ifs and the disappointments, the what-could’ve-beens. You are enough and you have never failed me yet.

Your promise still stands. All of your promises still stand because you are faithful to your word. You are who you say you are and you have never changed. The same God forever and always, and we can count on you to be who you say you are.

Thank God for these truths in Christ Jesus, Amen!

Happy Monday everyone 🙂

xxx

V

Morning Prayer

It was so nice to wake up early today and walk! The air was not as cool as I thought. The weather said 66 degrees and I assumed it would feel like 50 degrees because it’s been so hot here lately. But it felt perfect. It was one of those mornings where I was absolutely ready to get out of bed and start my day.

Lord, thank you for this Tuesday morning. Thank you for sunlight. I can’t imagine the world without the strong light from your incredible sun. And then there’s the spiritual light from your Son. Wow. You bring such brightness and warmth to the world and to my heart and soul through your good gifts and creation; which are, in essence, reflections of You. I am so thankful to know You and to know the Truth. Please use me this day in whatever way you see fit. Help me be obedient and listen to the sound of your small voice. Thank you for teaching me that the last shall be first, and it’s always better with fewer words than many babbling words. Help my words to be small in quantity, but rich in life-giving power.

And lastly, Lord, because I must go… help me choose to rejoice today, despite any limitations, pains, struggles, fears, worries, anxieties, stresses, unknowns, things I can’t fix. Because my sufferings are not worth comparing to the glory which will be revealed in me! Amen! Romans 8:18

He loves you!!!!!!!!!!!!

xxx

V <3

Spring is in the air

It’s only February 10, but it truly feels like Spring is in the air!

Maybe the fragrance and beauty of these flowers my husband brought me are influencing me? 🙂

I have never been so excited for Springtime in all my life. I’m from northeastern USA where spring is wet and muddy. Snow and ice are melting, and the ground is soft and soggy. It’s still cold and maybe snowy until mid-late April, and sometimes May! But not here in Virginia. Even today, February 10, the weather is warming up to 62 degrees and it’s sunny! Hooray! Just what I needed to lift my mind, body and spirit ^_^ <3

I found this on a list of suggested Valentine’s Day gifts for your SO. LOL I don’t know who would buy this lamp, but it made me laugh a lot. Thanks Retro Den <3

Only a few days til Valentine’s Day 2022! It’ll be my first V-Day as a MARRIED WOMAN! I can’t believe that in just a couple of weeks we’ll have been married for 5 months already! Love is in the air <3 <3 <3 and I will venture to say that my husband is the sweetest and bestest! 😀 Lord, thank you for giving me such a good one 🙂

9/26/21 – I love this picture so much! <3

Life doesn’t have to be so hard. It’s when we focus on the mountains (obstacles/problems) in our life instead of focusing on the One who created the mountains.

Lord God Almighty, I am so grateful to know you and better yet, be known by You. You know everything about me and still love me more than I can understand. I am so thankful for your grace, mercy, provision, and Faithfulness. Thank you for being faithful when I can’t be. Thank you for sustaining me and remaining true to Your promises. Thank you for your patience and understanding and your long suffering. Thank you also for your justice and your might. You are so good, Lord. So holy, holy, holy. There is no one like You, O Lord. You are completely set apart and above all, in all and through all. Thank you for creating me and my family and friends and loved ones, and for delighting to reveal your glory to us in your creation and through our life circumstances. Thank you for teaching me how to suffer well, how to wait on You and how to listen to Your voice. Taste and see that the Lord is good. And I have tasted Lord. Better is one day in your courts, than thousands elsewhere. And I will dwell in the house of the Lord forever, thanks to your gracious gift of faith, that was so undeserved. Help me not stray from your presence O Lord. Fill me afresh with the Holy Spirit today and fuel the fire of the joy of my salvation. Help me live for you alone today, Oh Lord. In the precious and mighty name of Jesus, Amen.

xxx

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V

Obedience

Lord, I am asking for your help today. I need help being obedient in the little things. I need help tending to the daily chores such as cooking and cleaning up, doing laundry, tidying up the house. I need help being obedient in this season of life, where although it is a fun season of being newly married, I still struggle with the need to want to do more. To be more. To have accomplished more. To have traveled to more places and grown deeper roots in my ministries. But you, Oh Lord, are saying one thing to me: be obedient.

I wish I could take a nap in these fluffy branches. (I’m tired lol )

Discontent arises when I am not looking at you closely enough Jesus. When I lose sight of how big you are and how great you are. How powerful you are. How wise you are. How patient and firm you are. How available you are. How caring you are. How your timing is perfect and you don’t give me what I don’t need.

Lord, I thank you for teaching me that when I am faithful in the little things, you give me more things. Thank you Jesus, for using whatever means to make me more faithful in the little things. Thankyou for teaching me consistency. Thank you for making me more consistently healthy. Thank you for using me to serve in the capacity that I am serving. Lord, make me grateful for all the work you have given me.

Lord, help me practice your presence and train my mind to think of you first. Thank you for daily changing me to look more like you and less like me. Though I thank you that the essence of me that you created me to be- a worshiper of you- is displayed more and more as I walk with you. Thank you for answering prayer and for always being so faithful. You ARE Faithful. Faithful is your name, Thank you for blessing me with so many good things in my life. My house, my car, husband, health, your Word, food, finances. Fun times. Love. Such amazing love. So many loving people and relationships. Lord, more and more I need you. I see how I need you completely. How I depend on you for everything. Please teach me to trust you more, and believe your word for who you are and what I have in you.

You are so too good. So good. Perfectly good. Help me to honor you in ALL that I do. Not to get caught up in my emotions, my feelings. Not to get stuck focusing on myself, or to make it all about me. Lord, thank you for putting the right people in my life that I can learn from. Please help me be willing to learn from them! To appreciate their perspective. Thank you for giving me discernment to know what is True and Right. Thank you for helping carry out what is True and Right. For your glory, in your name, the name of Jesus. Amen.

xxx

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V

A small life, I won’t have

A quiet life, yes. But not a small one.

A quality life, yes. But not a boring one.

A quickened life, yes. Not a depressed one.

He came to bring life, and life to the full. The abundant. A life filled with joy. A life covered in peace, where the anxiety is drowned out, seeped over the edges, and buried far below the surface of the earth and destroyed by lava.

Haha seriously though. When Jesus enters into your heart, there is no room for both anxiety and His peace to reign. So anxiety isn’t just covered up with a band-aid. It’s swallowed up and disappeared. It’s evaporated. It’s dead and gone. It’s no more!

The peace of God reigns forever, and is always available to those who earnestly seek the Lord and ask Him for it! That is a prayer that God forever answers so quickly.

Ask God for peace, and His peace, which surpasses all understanding will guard your hearts and minds in Christ Jesus. Philippians 4:7

Ohhh yes Lord. I thank you for this beautiful autumn day. The leaves are extra-crunchy out there. The sky has a few fluffy clouds, but the sky has a blue background. My windows are open to the elements and it was really lovely to hear so many bird songs right outside. Creation is alive and giving thanks to You, our great, omnipotent God!

Omnipotent: all-powerful

This was the attribute that we relayed to the children at bible study this week. God, you are SO powerful! To be able to speak life into existence with one Word. We are surely in awe of You.

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Thank you for hearing our prayers and for answering them. Thank you for your Faithfulness every day and for your provision, understanding, comfort, healing, gifts, presence, and great love. Thank you for being a servant-leader and leading by example. Oh, how we seek to honor you and desire you above all things, almighty God, our Rock and Redeemer.

Thank you for another day. Lord, direct my thoughts, words and deeds this day, for your glory. Amen

<3

xxx

V

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Yellow

Yellow flashed across my screen.

Is it you? I wondered expectantly. But no, it wasn’t you. 

I continued doing what I know I was supposed to be doing, but it was difficult. I got up to bring something across the room and this time I thought I heard you. 

Could it be you? I glanced over in the general direction of my cell phone but didn’t bother to check it. I didn’t want to be disappointed again. Not that my disappointment was overwhelming; in fact I believed I would hear from you. I will venture to say that I even knew in my heart that I most definitely would hear from you. But each time I checked my phone again and again, the doubt started to increase. Or at least that’s what my mind was trying to convince me of. 

The battle between the mind and the heart is a tough one at times. And I guess doubt is rooted in the heart. 

My mind trusts God. I trust Him with my mouth. But do I really trust Him with my heart if I’m ova hee-uh doubting left and right? It’s a constant battle of anxious thoughts (some small, some large) that I have to hit back out of my mind. Or better yet, beat them into the submission of the Truth. 

It’s been 2.25 hours and I haven’t heard back from you. 

I’m starting to go into that zone in my mind that has caution tape across the entrance. The Door of Doubt is a wide one. In fact, so it’s so easy to walk through that I find myself lost inside that room too often. The Door of Belief is a small door. I picture it as being very short, like suitable for a small child. And hard to see, easy to miss. 

And yet, we must focus on that door. It’s hard to find, it’s hard to pass through, but what’s on the inside of that door is absolute paradise. This is why:

Because — and I know I shouldn’t start off a sentence with “because” — if I truly believe that God has me in His Perfect, Faithful hands… If I truly believe that God works all things together for my good… If I truly believe that He will never leave me or forsake me… then I’m in Paradise. There’s no such thing as a socialist utopia. But there is Heaven. There is a place where nothing is broken, and nothing is lacking. But Jesus said “let it be on earth as it is in Heaven.” Because — here I go again — Jesus died so that we could experience peace with God now

Why can’t you just respond to my message; is that too much to ask?

my friends make fancy coffees <3

Is it possible to have peace with God and be at unrest simultaneously? Or perhaps unrest is not what I’m experiencing right now. It’s more like OCD. I’m obsessively thinking about hearing from this person while not hearing from them at the same time. So now I will pray.

Lord. I should have spoken to you a long time ago about this. I asked you many times for the initiation of the conversation. That has come. I also asked you for the desired result. I do believe it will come, but I am uneasy while I wait. I want to start planning ahead in my mind. I want to hear from this person. I want the screen to flash yellow and the words to flash GREEN … a green light. Go-Time. I want to go. Lord, you know I do. So I wait. And while I wait, I ask. Lord, will you touch this person’s heart even now. Right now. 9:07pm. Lord, will you touch their heart and cause them to respond. Lord will you impress upon whoever else’s heart is necessary to tie up the loose strings. Will you, Lord, bring closure to this situation. Will you close the Door of Doubt, and open wide the Door of Belief, and gently guide me through it? Lord will you help me stop obsessing about the outcome. Will you redirect my thoughts away from my phone and the messages, and instead to focusing my thoughts elsewhere. Being in prayer with You perhaps. Or writing. So I wait. In Jesus’ name, Amen.

spoiled

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I find myself starting to bargain with God. Making empty promises that we both know I won’t be able to keep. And then something happens that I really don’t like. I will be praying for someone, and then the enemy or my mind tells me something like “you’re just praying because you think that if you pray, God will notice you and pay attention to you and weigh whether or not He should give you the desires of your heart.” I hate that. Our sin doesn’t affect God’s love for us. That’s the most beautiful aspect of the gospel. 


However, sin has consecuencias. We truly reap what we sow. And when we sow seeds for death, we reap death. If I go to the gym every day for 2 minutes I will not get the same results as if I went to the gym every day for an hour. Duh?! Duh. Same thing applies here: if I spend all my time thinking about something out of my control, I am planting or watering seeds of doubt, worry, anxiousness, etc. 


Imagine spending that time praying. Singing. Reflecting on gratitude.

WAIT it’s you.

It’s not going to work out after all.

…..

…….

After waiting and checking and waiting and hoping, this answer was… less than satisfactory shall we say?

Alas. I can’t fight it. Because the Truth in the matter is this:

There was nothing I could have done or said differently to charter a different response. I thought and prayed over my responses. I didn’t act with haste. My mind tells me lies, like I should’ve acted hastily or said less or more, but I know that’s not true. And this is why:

God’s plans are unstoppable. 

If He meant for me to be somewhere different than where I am, I would be there. I would simply be there. 

Who can stand up against God? Nobody! 

Who can thwart God’s plans? Not one. 

No, that wasn’t the case. I simply was not meant to entertain with this person at this time. And in that Truth, I rest. 

my fave 😀

I rest knowing that God dictates my steps. He leads me down paths of righteousness for His name’s sake. He leads me besides still waters, and gives me rest. He provides shade for me in the heat of the day, and provides heat for me in the chilly air. He is my sword and my shield, my strong tower. In Him, I rest. Just to know Him and be known by Him is more than enough. 

I know I will hear from you again. I won’t be surprised if you change your mind and reach out to me. It’s too late now… maybe next time. We’re all learning through this. We’re all deepening old patterns and forming new ones altogether. I thank God for you, and I know that you too would give him the credit if only you believed. I believe that one day you will.

Xxx

V

I am not scared at all.

Of where my next check is coming from. Because God says this (please read each of these 2-3 times!!!):

“Be anxious for nothing, but in every situation, through prayer and petition, in thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God which surpasses all understanding will guard your hearts and minds in Christ Jesus.” Philippians 4:6-7

The daffodils praising the heavens.

He also says this:

“Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own.” Matthew 6:34

God is so detail-oriented.

And this:

“If you, then, though you are evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your Father in heaven give good gifts to those who ask him!” Matthew 7:11

Strong and alive.

And this:

“Every good and perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of the heavenly lights, who does not change like shifting shadows.” James 1:17

Just a cool teapot. LOL we each got our own.

And this:

“For the LORD will not reject his people; he will never forsake his inheritance.” Psalm 94:14

A cherry in the city.

I hope this has encouraged you. Let the Truth soak in. And join me in this prayer:

Lord Jesus, thank you so much for your Truth. Thank you that you are my provider and have promised to always give me all that I need. Thank you for transitioning me from one day to the next, one task to the next. Thank you that your grace is sufficient for me. Your kingdom is all that I need, and I am already in it. Lord, thank you for joy, hope and excitement. Thank you that when we lift our requests up to you, they are heard. Thank you that when we ask for your peace, you give it to us. Thank you that it transcends our understanding. Thank you for being my Father and for loving me, your daughter. I rely on you for my well-being, health, sound mind, and to reach all of my goals. Thank you for teaching me to show up and do my part, and then coming in and doing what only you can do. Thank you for this divine, beautiful relationship. You’re so powerful and amazing. I can’t WAIT to see you move. Amen.

Love you all! 🙂

xxx

V

How to Pray to God

The “ACTS” model is just one way to enter into a time of prayer with the living God. I like it because it helps me set my heart straight before God as I am praying and not just spew out some vague prayer. Not that I don’t do that often, or that short, simple prayers are wrong or not specific enough for God to understand, but I love the way the ACTS model makes prayer more worshipful.

silhouette photography of hanging rosary
Photo by Vanderlei Longo on Pexels.com

I think it is important to reiterate that this model is not the only way to pray. Prayer is talking to God. Simple. The ACTS model create an in-depth prayer posture and is a helpful tool for organizing one’s thoughts and covering all the bases in prayer. That is not to say that one prayer or one prayer session is lesser than another if one part of ACTS is not mentioned. Let’s not get legalistic about praying, people. The truth is, some of y’all may love the ACTS, while some of you find it entirely unhelpful. That is perfectly okay, and each person is entitled to their own opinion. However, on this post, I pray that you read with an open mind and leave encouraged. Let’s jump right into explaining the acryonym.

The “A” stands for adoration. This is a time of lifting up God and acknowledging His attributes. Adoring God just sounds lovely, doesn’t it? It’s a time of speaking the truth about God back to him. It’s affirming truths about God that help expand one’s vision. An example of adoration might sound something like this “Lord Jesus, you existed before the beginning of time and created the stars and the galaxies. You are God over the entire universe and also the God of each of your people’s heart. You are mighty to save, the Lion and the Lamb. We worship you, O God!”

The “C” stands for confession. This is a time to humble oneself before God and confess any sin before God. It’s a time to admit where we have wronged God or others and fallen short of His design and His glory.

The “T” stands for thanksgiving. Transitioning to thanking God helps grow our faith and belief in God’s abilities. It helps us focus on how God has kept His promises and always been faithful. Thanking God helps us trust God more by purposefully acknowledging the goodness that He has blessed our lives with. Thanking God and believing Him for what He will do is part of this segment of ACTS.

And finally, “S” stands for supplication, aka presenting our requests to God (Phil 4:6). At this time, we ask God to meet our needs and the needs of those around us. We cry out to Him and ask for His protection, provision, wisdom, guidance, etc. We call on the great and mighty power of the Lord God who was and is and is to come.

grayscale photography of people raising hands
Photo by Luis Quintero on Pexels.com

My own example of ACTS praying earlier this evening:

Adoration: God. You alone are wise. Your wisdom is different from the “wisdom” of the world. Your thoughts are higher than my thoughts. Your ways are higher than my ways. You are high and lifted up and 100% good. You are sovereign, just, perfect, righteous and holy, holy, holy. Father, you are the living water and forever satisfying. You are my strong tower, my rock, my refuge. Father you are the vine from which all life grows out of. You are the Creator of life and all that it entails. You are so creative and awesome.

Confession: Father God, I confess that I do it wrong so often. So often I am led astray by my desires and don’t wait on your provision. God I feel like I’m wandering around in the wilderness sometimes, having passed the same rock over and over again. Sometimes I wonder if I’m ever going to reach my goals. Father I confess that I don’t trust you a lot of the time. I don’t trust your timing since I confess that I’m always running ahead. Lord I feel double-minded at times and hypocritical. I feel deceitful and paint things in a way different than they actually are because I don’t feel like using my brain to voice the words correctly.

Thanksgiving: Father thankyou for loving me. Thank you for your Holy Spirit who is my guide and my Comforter. Thank you Jesus for rescuing me and showing me how to walk. Thank you for your grace, your forgiveness, your justice, your mercy, your unending love, your forever plan of redemption and justification and salvation. Thank you for leading your people. Thank you for calling each of us by name. Thank you that you have given me a name. Thank you for giving me purpose.

Supplication: Father lead me. Lead us. Have mercy on your people. Thank you for your mercy, your grace. But thank you also for your justice. Lord, do whatever it takes to make us a people fit for your service. Prepare our hearts as good soil to receive your word. Help us apply it. Lord fan the flame in our hearts that burns for you. Lord grant your people a measure of faith so great that we would be yearning for you. Burning for you. Desiring You more than anything in the world. Lord I pray that we would think of you first in the morning. Lord I pray that we would turn to you first in times of thanksgiving and necessity. Father you are all-powerful and almighty and more than able to answer these prayers. Thank you that you hear our prayers and thank you that the prayers of a righteous man are effectual. I love you Lord. Thank you so much for using me for your glory. Bring glory to your name! In Jesus name, Amen.

I hope this was helpful brothers and sisters! The point is to start somewhere in your prayer life with God. Start praying more. Start talking to God more. Make time for God. What if you ceased for 5 minutes a day before God and talked or listened? I’ll do a post on listening soon. God bless you all… If you liked this post be sure to “like” it! xoxo!

<3 V