"Trust the process" I read these words some time ago and didn’t realize the importance they would play in my past weekend. As it turned out, I was somewhere in this beautiful country of ours that I had never been before. I had to catch an early flight at an airport that was an hour and some change away, according to my handy IPhone GPS. So off I go, following the instructions that were being fed to me. It all looked legit until it told me to turn on some County Road that I passed by because it was not clearly marked off the main highway. Realizing I had missed the turn; while my GPS said, “Rerouting…” I quickly made the decision to turn around and take the County Road; as I traveled down the road; I realized it was very rural and not much traffic at that early morning hour, I reluctantly continued following the instructions that would hopefully get me to the airport to catch my flight home. Just when I decided to trust the judgment of the GPS; it told me to turn onto another County Road. It appeared I was going further and further into the country and farther and farther from the major Highway I turned off of. I began to doubt. Doubt the GPS, but more so, doubt that I had put the proper destination in the GPS.
I panicked a bit; and decided to try to back track my GPS and make sure I put in the airport as my destination; all the while going down the Country Road in the dark and very mindful that I have to make this plane home. Unable to finagle the task; I decided to trust the process……
Even in my decision to trust the process, I’m thinking of alternatives that can validate that I’m on the right road in the middle of nowhere in the dark, trying to make it to my destination. Those alternatives included thoughts of, “Who can I call…it’s early, who will be up? And if I can call someone, how do I tell them where I am?” UGH>>>>I personally am very uncomfortable with situations that I’m not sure of. Instead of thinking, “Hey, what’s the worst that can happen? I miss my flight.” Instead of thinking, “I’m gonna trust God that He’s got this.” Instead of thinking, “I’m gonna trust me, that I put the airport as the destination in the GPS.” Instead of, Instead of….I took the insecure path and tried to find ways I could make sure I was on the right road to the airport. Which, all were negative in nature and opposite of trust.
When I realized that I would have to stop the car in the dark on this County Road in the middle of nowhere to do any of those options....which means I would delay myself and quite possibly miss the flight, I decided to trust the process and keep going.
Please read those words again, “I decided to trust the process and keep going.”
How many of us need that reminder, right now? Right where you are? Right where you are in life? “I decided to trust the process and keep going.”
Not only did those words fit my situation that early morning; those words can be applied to almost every situation in my life. Those words can fit your life’s journey with God as well. Whether you’re on a path that God has you on and you aren’t clear about where He has you going; or you’re on a path that your own choices have you on; and you’re desperate to get off and find God. You can make the decision to trust the process and keep going.
The life lesson that I couldn’t overlook through that experience was that there will be times when you’ve been given instructions and those instructions will make you question. You see, I put my destination in my GPS and hit, “Find route” and off I went. But in that, when the instructions made me uncomfortable, I began to question, panic and second guess the process. When those instructions brought me a place where it appeared so opposite of where I knew I was going, I began to question. So it is with the spiritual. If you’ve given your life to Christ; if your heart is to be with God and heaven is your destiny and you’ve hit, “Find route”, you gotta trust the process and keep going.
By the way; there will be County Roads that you turn down that appear you’re going away from your destination; but trust in the Great I AM.
For He is the One who holds tomorrow, who holds you in His hand…trust the process and keep going.
It was only time on those dark County Roads that eventually got me to the major freeway; which had a sign for the airport! It was only time spend that eventually validated my decision to trust the process and keep going.
Oh, and I got to the airport on time, turned in my rental car and boarded my plane home! Can I encourage you to trust the process you’re in and on, and keep going? Know that God loves you and has an awesome plan for your life! So…trust the process.
Today's date is etched in my mind and heart...my late husband died on April 16. Today makes 5 years ago. Long days but short years. The sting of it has lessened. The tears are fewer. My heart is more recovered. I still live with the effects of the loss, but I've mostly adjusted to being a single mom, a widow and a party of 1. Mostly adjusted to flying solo in ministry and life. Mostly figured out how to live without him and mostly discovered who I am apart from being a wife.... I've mostly adjusted to shopping alone, sleeping and getting up alone. Yep...adjustment doesn't mean happy about it. But adjustment means adjustment. You see for over 2 years after his death, I lived like he was still alive and had you spoken to me and didn't know my husband was dead, you'd think he was at home waiting for me. Adjustment. I had to give myself permission to live without him. I had to accept my new norm.
What I know is that God has kept me...even when I didn't want to be kept. God has kept me. 5 years later...God has kept me. To God be the glory. And He will keep you too.
I recently read a post on social media that said, “You are strong enough to walk away because you’re worth it.”
I read it twice…ok, maybe 3 or 4 times. I tend to re-read stuff when posts seemingly fit into my world and current situation. From that place come these thoughts:
I think most of us, at least us women, think enough about ourselves not to intentionally hurt, harm or neglect ourselves. We can assume that to do otherwise; would be foolish. But yet; we don’t see the hurt, harm or neglect we willfully subject ourselves to when it comes to certain relationships, circumstances or situations.
For example, staying in a toxic situation is not good and benefits no one, mostly you. Sticking it out in an expired relationship isn’t noble or comfortable; it’s simply settling for left overs every day. When we engage in circumstances that we sense aren’t good, why do we continue in them?
Perhaps, we fail to see the impact of these choices because most of us wear a big tool belt. It’s not that we’re aware of this belt, or we put it on every day; we just never take it off and it becomes part of who we are. This belt is equipped with lots of tools and stuff to help us fix things in our life. This is a great attribute; as women, I tend to think God made us this way; we are the called ones to help, nurture and fill in the gaps. We also enjoy challenges and lead regardless of conditions. All great attributes…thanks God, by the way, for equipping us!
Back to the tool belt…along life’s experiences, we have added so much stuff and tools to our belt. In fact, there’s probably everything but the kitchen sink in there. And…at any given time or circumstances, we reach and pull out what we think is necessary for the job. The problem with this is that these tools typically cover up the hurt, harm or neglect that is present. And while we know we are strong enough to walk away…we don’t always do that.
At least for me, I’m realizing I’m worth it... to just walk away. I’m not yet conclusively convinced of my worth…not yet. Not entirely. But because I know God knows my worth, I can too and therefore, it will strengthen me to walk away from hurt, harm and neglect.
Saying so long and divorcing relationships, situations and circumstances that aren’t healthy takes courage and it takes intention. But mostly, it takes knowing you're worth it. When you know you’re worth it, you’re then strong enough to walk away….pray for me, as I pray for you.
“When you don’t know the value of someone or something, you will abuse it.”
This morning my son and I are blessed to be flying first class on our travel journey. Big seats, lots of leg room, special attention, "uh....yes please!" First class is a very comfortable way to fly! As I'm traveling, the familiar instructions of the flight attendant almost always get drowned out by the conversation of the passengers and the background noise in the cabin. If you've flown frequently enough, you know the drill so much so that you tend to ignore their instructions. "Blah, blah, blah..."
Today I listened and watched as the attendant demonstrated the instructions to us. I can glean several spiritual lessons from their instructions, but for this blog I'll highlight the exit instructions. You see they are obligated to tell those on each flight how many exits there are on the plane. Which I'm assuming is helpful to know in the event there is an emergency or situation when one needs to jump out of the plane right quick. (Visions of the titanic sinking and not nearly enough life boats were available for all the passengers race through my head.)
So about this exit business. They inform us how many exits and show us where they are located. The suggest we look around where we're seated to know which exit us closest to us. In addition, they tell us the closest exit may be located behind you, which I'm guessing is often an overlooked fact.
This is helpful information in life as well as on the airplane. You see, there are times in your life, in situations and in relationships when you will benefit to exit. I'm not necessarily referring to running away from problems that need to be resolved; but perhaps you realize that to stay and remain is not going to yield any benefit. And to stay is only adding salt to an injury. In those cases, an exit is in order.
Some exits may be emergent and others require a plan or even a strategy. Timing may be a factor in your exit. Whatever the case, it's helpful to be aware of the nearest exit - in the event you need to use it.
As we close out yet another year, perhaps an exit is in order. Exit those things that are unnecessary. Exit because you've been meaning to leave behind some things, but instead have just been tolerating. What about all those just going through the motions situations? It may be time to look and see where the exits are.
I pray you have the courage to trust your instinct and you'll ask God to help you find the closest exit to you.
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The milk is poured, you’ve added a few ice cubes to make it really cold…..just as you’re about to go in with it….you accidently knock the glass of milk over!
Really????? Spilled milk?? Ugh!
Whether the glass was full or half full, when milk spills it requires attention and immediate attention at that! No one really within their right thinking would intentionally leave the milk spilled and neglect to clean it up Even though you’re mad at the accident, you’re not so mad, that you're not going to clean it up! Maybe you’re hurt because your expectation of enjoying the milk isn't happening now. But you're not so hurt that you won't ever pour another glass of milk to enjoy…
You wouldn’t leave the spilled milk all over the counter or table to seep and ruin any papers or other objects on the surface. Right?? No, spilled milk, to say the least, smells if it stays out of refrigeration for any length of time….so, like most, you’re angry, but you take the necessary steps to clean it up. You’re frustrated because your plans got jacked up and now you’ve got a mess on your hands. But…you do what you have to do to clean up the spilled milk in spite of the emotions tied to the spill.
In spilled milk, the necessity, reasonable and practical prevails over the mess and emotions associated with it….you gotta clean it up! I guess that’s where the phrase, “Don’t cry over spilled milk” came from. The message is you can’t change what has already happened, and to worry about unfortunate events which have already happened is fruitless.
The crying over spilled milk analogy is applicable in most of life’s difficult situations. Say for example a recent post I saw from a beautiful young lady on a social media site. She posted from her heart; here’s what she said:
Have you ever invested all of your time in one person only to come to the realization that they never really cared about you? Have you ever felt so used to the point where you're wondering where all of your time & money has gone? Have you ever felt a love so strong for someone & then realize that they never felt the same way about you all along? Yeah, that's me right now.— feeling emotional.
Yes I have. Cry, be mad, work through your emotions and seek healing. You've got stuff and people ahead of you that you need to get too. So don't spend too much time over the spilled milk. Clean it up and enjoy the clean counter where the milk use to be. Remember when you don't clean milk up right away after it spills, it sours and stank!!!! Love you. Nothing happens to you, it happens for you!
A betrayal, hurt or any set back that sets you back can be compared to spilled milk. There’s a mess involved and while you can regret it, analyze it, deny it or even try to reject it….the milk spilled, the offense happened. You have to clean it up. If you don’t, like the spilled milk, it will affect your other relationships, your opinions and your future. Besides, until you clean up the milk, the space it’s spilled on is useless. So when betrayal comes, or disappointments happen….clean up the mess and carry on.
To press this issue home; I was at lunch today with a great friend. Out of no where she said, I remember when my daughter was about 3, she spilled milk in a room in our home and we didn’t know it until we starting smelling the stench. TRUTH! Clean up the mess that you didn’t intend to happen, adjust your crown and carry on because others around you can smell the spilled milk that you can't see or don't wanna clean up.
When God wants to do something awesome through you, He has to get you from where you are to where He is. Perhaps the trial/hardship/temptation/your current situation is the way to where He is.
I know to our natural thinking and reason; that seems bizarre. How could a majestic, powerful, loving, all-knowing God take us the way of hardship to find where He is? I have to be ok with not knowing the answer to some of those questions. I have to trust in God’s Word, His ways are not my ways and His thoughts are not my thoughts. (Isaiah 55:9) I choose to trust that God’s eternal plan supersedes my temporary plan. That God’s greatness for me is far greater and more meaningful than my current situation.
When you hang tight with your faith, when you overpower the shadows of fear with faith…you’ll make it to where God is. You’ll find your destiny. And your current situation will be what you needed to equip you when you get there.
Whatever season you’re living in, whatever your current situation is, if you will see with eyes of faith, you will see that God is whoo-ing you. He has a plan... He loves you and has an awesome plan for your life!
Live each moment. Enjoy your current situation. Find the strength to live each moment. Find the determination to enjoy your current situation. Knowing that you know when God wants to do something awesome through you, He has to get you from where you are to where He is!
Let me know when your current situation has led you to where God is, and what great things He is doing through you!
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Why do we chase things? Why do we chase people? Because we believe the reward or bounty once we get it, will be worth the chase.
At points in the chase, you will have to pause, reflect and reevaluate if the chase is still worth the effort and time that you’re investing in it. Perhaps the once sought after bounty has lost its luster and now no longer holds the weight of the expected outcome.
Then, there are those times that we just like to chase. We find exhilaration in the quest and that’s the factor that motives us to keep chasing. I don’t know what to do with that mindset; perhaps I’ve had it myself and just haven’t realized it. I find with this mentality, one really doesn’t care about the bounty of the catch as much as they thrive on the chase.
I have been the one on the chase because I am seeking the outcome. I want the prize. When you’re on that path, it’s most profitable to check in with God often, to see if what you’re chasing is in line with what He wants for you. You will find that God will allow you to chase, as long as you’re willing to chase…but you’ll wear yourself out and become tired…very tired because it doesn’t seem the effort you’re exerting is gaining you any ground. “Wanna wear the t-shirt I got from this experience?”
Have you ever feel like what you’re chasing are things that you shouldn’t have to chase? Me too! There are some things that just ought to be. That some things that are, should just be, as a result of knowing Jesus. Right?? Yet, they somehow just aren’t there.
I have found that if I chase God and after God with the same tenacity that I chase after other “stuff/people/relationships” I would benefit greatly. In fact, I probably won’t have the need to chase the other stuff.
I think by instinct that we have a need to chase; perhaps it’ part of our makeup at human beings that God gave us when He created the every fiber of our being. As with all things, what God gives, the world distorts and we stray away from things that will benefit us and bring Glory to God. Like chasing….I would say that God gave us that need to chase, because it’s supposed to be for Him.
Well than, with that revelation, I’ve got some adjusting to do…how about you?
(So this blog is intended for humor purposes and food for thought)
The Great Debate: What if we choose to argue about things that didn’t matter, like which way the toilet paper should go on the roll. Or like, do we say “on today” or just “today”?
What if we argued about stuff like, which tastes better, eating fried eggs cooked in bacon grease or eating fried eggs cooked in butter?
Sounds silly, but honestly, life is too fragile, temporary and enjoyable to be arguing about stuff that makes you more angry, bitter or fosters a sense of entitlement, breaking your peace and interrupting your joy.
I’ve always heard the phrase, “Choose your battles.” There’s wisdom in this statement and it reminds me of Joshua 24:15 that puts all of us on blast, “choose this day, whom you will serve.” It seems it all comes down to choices, but at the foundation of all of the choices we are privileged to make, is the decision to choose Christ. Once you make that choice, everything else is secondary.
I started this blog with the words, The Great Debate. So I will close this blog with this thought, The Great Debate may not be worth debating. Your peace and your devotion to God are presidential in your life. Avoid the things and situations and yes, even the people that rob you of your peace and loyalty to God. Not every opportunity presented to you for debate is worth the cost. Instead, laugh more, keep a proper perspective and propose the question of which tastes better, eggs fried in bacon grease or eggs fried in butter to the one who wants to debate you. LOL
For the Ladies….
As I was reading the morning devotion on air this morning, the word “RECOMMIT” stood out to me. It grabbed my heart and rattled my mind….shook my spirit. (Did you feel the world stand still for that brief moment?) LOL
Many of us ladies of God take hits from the enemy. Hits to knock us down to the depths of despair. Hits to sabotage our faith to the point of despondency. Hits to knock the wind out of our sail and leave us in the valley of low self-esteem and the hallway of insecurity. Hits to deceive us into agreement that this is only happening to “me.”
The enemy is a liar. He lies 100% of the time. There is no truth in him. And he can never be trusted. Whatever is contrary to the Word of God is contrary to the Will of God and therefore, is resistant to the plan of God for your life and situation and needs to be burned! God is an all consuming fire. (Hebrews 12:29)
So…this word “RECOMMIT”, what stuck in my spirit was that many of us need to do just this. We have been committed because our love for God is great. We are faithful and we are caring. We are devoted to living a life for Christ and we purpose to do that in our everyday choices and living. But…perhaps there’s a need to “RECOMMIT” to the One, True Living God.
Re-commit implies again, repeat, a do over. As a married couple has been married for several years, they may have a desire or need to recommit their lives and intentions again in a renewing of their vows ceremony which shows the world that they still remain faithful to the original commitment they made at the beginning of their marriage.
So it may be with us, ladies, we need to “RECOMMIT” ourselves, our minds, our intentions, our future, our expectations and ultimately ourselves to God again. Recommitment can strengthen what is already there, can fortify the borders and propel us.
Perhaps, the missing element on your spiritual journey with Jesus is “RECOMMIT”. Ladies, you are a queen to the King of Kings and Lord of Lords. Remember at the beginning of this blog, I put the devil on blast in his tactics toward us. Once you identify the actions of the enemy in your life, the fingerprints of destruction are leaving a print in your joy, it’s time to “RECOMMIT” lady of God.
Dust yourself off, adjust your crown, refocus, “RECOMMIT” and keep going! There’s a big world out there waiting for you! Go make your mark for Jesus.
This word reads like any other word in the English language. In fact, we hear this word much in the Christian vernacular, so much so that perhaps, at least for me, I have lost the severity of its meaning. Perhaps I’ve lulled myself into a state of apathy regarding its meaning and expectancy.
In my morning devotion today, it was centered about Titus 2:7 that lays out the challenge for us to be an example in everything….. We do that by remaining committed not only to God, but to the place we are.
We understand, for the most part that being a follower of Christ requires or expects commitment from us. But somehow, that instruction of remaining committed proves to be a challenge because of difficult circumstances and trying situations. We know that we are to remain committed; but yet, often without intention or notice…our commitment weans.
According to dictionary.com - commitment means the act of committing, pledging, or engaging oneself, a pledge or promise; obligation. Which mostly, is doable as long as things/situations and people are tolerable. Things and situations don’t even have to be favorable, but at least tolerable. It’s when things aren’t tolerable that the true test of commitment comes into play.
I made a commitment to Christ on March 27, 1992. It was at the altar of a church that I surrendered my will, my life and my future to the One True God who met me at the point of humanness. I didn’t understand at that point, and how could I possibly understand the depths of what that commitment entailed. And all these years later, I’m still not fully aware of the depths of this word commitment. I know I have experienced really hard times that were way beyond my comfort zone and I have been pushed to the point of no return; so I thought and….God’s commitment to me has remained. In that, I find peace and prayerfully the power to remain committed to Him as well.
I find myself complaining, grumbling and having a rotten and ungrateful attitude in my relationship with God. Because somehow, my intention is to remain committed to Christ; yet I want to leave the unfavorable circumstances as quickly as possible. How does that work??? Does that work???
Today’s devotion hit me with this: “A commitment means you’re to be where you’re supposed to be.” The same way Christ stands before the Father on my behalf, is the same way I am to stand where He has placed me. Through the hard and difficult times, through the turbulent waters that feel like they’re overtaking me, through the bowls of grief and bursts of frustration because it’s just too hard….I am to be committed to be where I’m supposed to be. In my commitment to remain…I am fulfilling my commitment to Christ as His follower.
Surely, as you’re reading this…God could change the situation and circumstances in an instant and relieve me and you of the hardship, yet He may not. He may instead want us to remain committed to Him by being committed to the difficult times and hard places.
Thank God for His grace which allows me another opportunity to do it His way and not mine. That same grace is afforded to you every time as well. May we, together, be resolved in our commitment to Christ by remaining committed to be where we’re suppose to be.
God has an awesome plan for your life!!