Monday, February 27, 2012

Giving Credit Where Credit is Due!

Happy Monday Everyone!

I just wanted to take a few minutes to say Thank You and share with you what has helped me so much in the past few months.

First and foremost, Thank You God! :) I know He is doing a great work in me, and here's some of the ways He has helped me:
  • My amazing husband, Lucas!
    • He has stuck with me and supported me through thick and thin and continues to show me what love really is!
  • Wednesday Morning Women's Bible Study at Olympia Lacey Church of God
    • This is a wonderful group of ladies, we are all different ages, different stages in life, coming together to get to know our Lord a little better each week.
  • "Duty or Delight? Knowing Where You Stand with God" by Tammie Head
    • This was my first Bible Study and WOW!
    • Tammie takes you through a process where you get to know God on a much more personal level so you can delight in being his child!
    • This book gave me so much strength through His Word that I was able to face so many things in myself that needed to change. I admit, I was in denial about a lot of things that were effecting me negatively. It wasn't until I was able to really face them, that I could finally be free of them.
  • "A Women's Heart, God's Dwelling Place" by Beth Moore
    • We are doing this one right now and again WOW!
    • I will comment more on this once we are finished and it's really sunk in :)
Both of these books can be found online in numerous places - but here's a link for ya

  • Scott Abel
    • I hired Scott to be my coach a few months ago, and I wish I would have hired him a couple years ago!
    • I will post more on my whole Figure experience, but after 4 competitions I had run myself into the ground and needed some expert help.
    • "The Other Side of the Mirror" was the first book of Scott's that I read. Serously, everyone who has ever dieted and definitely competed needs to read this book. I had never before read a book that so clearly wrote in black and white how I was thinking! Where "Duty or Delight?" gave me the strength, "The Other Side of the Mirror" gave me the ability to see. The two worked so perfectly together as I read them both at the same time.
    • "Your Truth is Calling, Connecting the Dots to Self-Awareness" - the next book of Scott's that I'm currently reading. If you are ready to move forward, this is a great book to read. I felt like I was going in circles for a long time and this book, along with "The Other Side of the Mirror" has helped me break out of that and like I said before, move forward!
Here's Scott's website

So Thank You, Thank You, Thank You God, Lucas, Wednesday Morning Women's Bible Study, Tammie Head, Beth Moore and last but certainly not least, Scott Abel!

Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Love Wins, everytime!

God is love. We have all probably heard/read this before, and for some of us, this has greater meaning than others. As I grow in my faith and study His Word, I have been so blessed in this journey of getting to know our Father. I have realized that the more I get to know Him, the more I know about love; how He loves us, fiercly loves us to such incredible depth, it's hard to comprehend.

When I look back on all the mistakes I've made, and all the resulting suffering and misery  - if I were to sum it all up into one core problem it would be this; I wasn't loving myself because I was believing in lies.

It's kinda hard to grasp that the Almighty Creator loves us when we don't love ourselves! You all probably know me as a super-positive person, which I am. However I have struggled with some pretty destructive thought patterns, and put up walls around my heart just like the rest of us. Over the past few months I've experienced a tremendous amount of personal growth, He has literally lit up my world! And I want to share some of that with you.

Signs and Symptoms of not loving yourself:

1. You're not a happy joyful person on the inside.
2. You have this crazy need to search and search for whatever it is that will bring you peace.
3. You keep making the same mistakes over and over again.
4. You have attached your self worth to external things - for example:
  • I will be happy when I lose this extra weight
  • As soon as I achieve                 everything will fall into place and be ok
  • I just need to get                under control and then I can deal with the rest of my life
5. You have tunnel vision - so focused on what is "wrong" that it takes up all your energy
6. You make decisions that you know are not good for you.
7. You believe somehow that you are the exception, that you can tolerate and maybe even deserve a great amount of suffering.
8. You are physically ill
9. You are exhausted - mentally, physically and emotionally.
10. You would never give someone you love the advise you secretly give yourself.

These were some of my inner tortures, if you will. Praise the Lord, that I have freedom from them now! We are always a work in progress, and my goal today in sharing what was once my ugly side is to reach out to you so you know YOU ARE NOT ALONE!

The more I came out of this darkness the more I realized I was not alone. The enemy likes to trick us into thinking that we are alone in our sufferings, that we are somehow unworthy. I felt so isolated and bound by all of these things -- but I know now that was all an illusion. God had me in his hands the whole time - I was just so distracted with all the "smoke and mirrors" that I couldn't see straight!

I've also learned something else about the enemy - he speaks to us as if we are speaking to ourselves in first person. That voice in your head that sounds like you, that says things like, "I don't really deserve to be happy" -- that is not your voice, that is not what God thinks about you, it is a lie, choose not to believe it!

One of the greatest "breakthrough" moments I had was through Luke 10:1-20 - I will leave you with the best part :)

17 The seventy-two returned with joy and said, “Lord, even the demons submit to us in your name.”
18 He replied, “I saw Satan fall like lightning from heaven. 19 I have given you authority to trample on snakes and scorpions and to overcome all the power of the enemy; nothing will harm you. 20 However, do not rejoice that the spirits submit to you, but rejoice that your names are written in heaven.”

Do you know what this means?! This means that in the name of Jesus Christ, we can cast out evil...literally. After all, evil has already been overcome, and God has already won! We don't have to fight with those negative thoughts or temptations - we don't have to listen to them and in fact

One of the greatest prayers I made that impacted my life so significatly and immediately was something like this, "Jesus Christ, in Your Heavenly Name, I banish all evil from my mind, body and spirit - evil has no place here, this is the residence of the Holy Spirit! Amen!

Monday, February 13, 2012

Welcome to my Blog!

Hello and Welcome! I've been thinking about starting a blog for some time now, and today was the day to finally do it! I enjoy writing and expressing my thoughts and feelings - and I hope you will enjoy reading them. I will be writing on various topics from God, to being a Wife and Mommy, to being an Army Wife, to our son Bear, to fitness, dieting & competing, to arts and classical music and who knows what else! My goal here is to my completely transparent and real about who I am, the many mistakes I've made, the valuable lessons learned, and the amazing life God has blessed me with.

This is what I wrote on my website at the beginning of this year, and I'd like to share that with you here.

"My baby Bear just turned 3 years old! I couldn't be a prouder Momma and I love that little guy more than words can say. On this day I think back to when he was born and how it became very real how precious life is. Time stopped for those first few minutes and we didn't know if he would open his eyes and take his first breath. And praise the Lord, the EMTs got there in time and he is here today.
I remember later being completely exhausted and even when he was crying, it was music to my ears, I was so thankful."

"That day gave me such perspective on life, and how blessed we really are, and how grateful we need to be. So that is my New Year's Resolution this year -- to always keep things in perspective, see the bigger picture, and be grateful. I am blessed beyond what I deserve, and that is the amazing grace and mercy of our God!"

In keeping with my New Year's Resolution, I have been praying for those things; to keep things in perspective, see the bigger picture and be grateful -- and the Lord is always faithful in answering prayers. In the past few weeks He has helped me with all of those things and then some. I will be using this theme in many of my future blogs.Taking a moment to step out of your tiny little world and see things on a grander scale does wonders! It helps you see what is truly important and how much you really have.