It’s All His Fault

There is hope for your struggling marriage! To read our latest post on Lovenotlies.com, visit http://lovenotlies.com/2016/08/26/its-all-his-fault now!

Don’t Count Out The Holy Spirit

New blog posted on Lovenotlies.com about the power of the Holy Spirit operating in your life! Enjoy.

http://lovenotlies.com/…/…/01/dont-count-out-the-holy-spirit

Happy Independence Day!

love_not_lies

Hi readers! I know it’s been a long time since I’ve posted anything. I wanted to share some good news with you! I have partnered with my friend Cindy Dronette to author a new blog that is all about God’s love and the freedom we can experience when we stop believing the lies of the enemy.

There is no time like the present to take all those negative and destructive thoughts captive. Bringing them into the obedience of Christ means that we begin to apply the truth in God’s word to everything we hear, and if it doesn’t line up… throw the junk out! This isn’t easy, especially when these are deep-seated strongholds that have defined who we are. But the truth of God, the one that tells us that we were made in His image, means that there is nothing about us that can be bad, ugly, wrong, rejected, hurt, not worthy, useless, etc. Each one of us has value and a purpose.

I may continue to write on this blog now and then. My story hasn’t ended here as I never did have that second child. At 45 years old, I am having to grieve. After grieving the loss of nearly 10 children, I find myself now grieving the loss of a dream… a deep desire of my heart. I am open to God’s plan for my life, and I know that God can still bring us a child. The important thing is that I stand strong in my faith, trusting that the Lord’s plan for my life is better than what I imagined my life would be. I’ve got lots to ponder here… so don’t be surprised if an article shows up now and then.

For now… I hope the new Love Not Lies blog inspires you. I pray that through our honest testimonies and the truth of God’s word, you will identify the lies you have bought into and find the strength to send those lies straight back to the dry place where they belong.

We felt Independence Day was the perfect day to launch this new freedom blog. Visit www.lovenotlies.com and follow me there!

Out of the Ashes We Rise

This is a devotional I wrote that was recently published on a friend’s devotional site. I thought it seemed fitting to publish it here as well. Enjoy and many blessings.

Whether it was my biological clock ticking or a Holy Spirit prompting, I had a sudden urge to be a mom after saying, “I do.” I thought I’d have no problem bearing children, but that was not the case for me.

The honeymoon period of our marriage turned into something out of a horror film – moments plagued with fear, blood and death. In the span of three years, I miscarried five children.

In the aftermath of the fourth miscarriage, a part of me died. The enemy trampled on my heart and marched through my thought life as I sank my teeth into several lies including:

  • God is not for me.
  • I can’t rely on God as Protector.
  • I’m being punished for past sin.
  • I’m not worthy.

A truly dead season
Some would say I was glutton for punishment as we pressed on, and after the fifth baby died, my doctor diagnosed a severe infection in my tubes. “I’m sorry, you’re sterile.” Those words shot through me like a giant bullet.

I was breathing, but every hope and vision for our marriage vanished. My heart managed to beat, but it was certainly shattered into pieces.

Death consumed me. My babies. My dreams. My future. My flesh was in rapid decay as fear, jealousy and hatred took root in my broken heart.

In my unhealthy grieving, I was a slave to sin and dead in my transgressions. I stewed in anger and bitterness while scowling at pregnant women. I truly believed God was against me.

My heart was charred. I had been burned beyond recognition, and yet, something inside of me knew I had to keep trying.

With spring comes new life
As Easter 2009 approached, I was captivated by the execution and resurrection of Jesus. Did He really do all of this for me? Why? What did this mean in my life?

One night while watching the Passion of Christ, I got an answer. As His story unfolded before my eyes I wept as a voice began to whisper, “Every bit of this was done for you.”

The lashes. The torture. The humiliation. Every bruise and drop of blood was for me. The sacrifice. The death. The resurrection. Jesus did it all for me!

As this revelation penetrated every cell in my body, something happened. My sin began to fade into the background as the Gospel of Jesus Christ brought new life into my dead limp body.

It was just as Chris Tomlin so beautifully sang,

“Into the darkness you shine
Out of the ashes we Rise
There’s no One like You
None like You.

I had an awakening, or better yet, a Lazarus experience. The truth of Jesus Christ brought me back to life.

In an instant, I was sold out completely. Now, because He died, I could live. Because He was raised, I could rise out of the fear and dread. His grace began to fuel me. Faith welled up in my spirit and no matter what the doctor’s said, I truly believed I would have a natural child.

Alive and kicking
Even though test after test continued to reveal bad news, the passion in my heart for a baby flourished. The more I focused on the truth of Jesus Christ, the more faith grew. It was early March, when the surgeon scheduled me for an exploratory surgery to determine for sure whether my tubes needed to be removed. But Jesus Christ, the great Physician, saw to it that I would never see the inside of the surgical suite.

The week of Easter Scott and I discovered that I had been completely healed and even more miraculous, I was pregnant. Nine months later, we were blessed with a beautiful daughter.

Resurrection is defined as a rising again, as from decay; the act of bringing back to vibrancy; revival.

My story didn’t ended after my daughter entered the world. Many things were birthed through this season ­– a deep love affair with my Lord and a desire to help others receive freedom.

Truly dying to self has been a process for me. Processing what it means to take up the cross and follow Him is a daily challenge that I humbly accept! For me, this started with the need to rid strongholds in my life. Then there was a prompting to share my story. Eventually a call came to see women healed and set free. I’ve seen hearts and lives restored as well as physical pain and infirmity be stopped.

I have no idea what is in store for my life. But one thing I know for sure, I will live it with vibrancy and with one thing in mind – revival.

Chris Gore, head of Bethel’s healing school said in a Think International interview that he believes that we are living in the greatest revival that’s ever been on the face of this earth. I believe he’s right.

It was through my greatest tragedy I was able to rise and see Jesus for the first time. I was plucked out of the decay and given a new lease on life. Now with Jesus by my side, I choose to live it vibrantly.

Questions:

Are you stagnant in your faith? What are some ways you can step out and fuel your faith?

What are some areas of your life that need to be revived?

What is your story? Do you believe that your testimony is a miracle that can and will demonstrate to others the Gospel of Jesus?

What would revival look like in your life?

Have you given up?

Women stand up and celebrate… you are all moms

It’s Mother’s Day, and I can’t help but think about the women out there who are struggling to conceive. I am heart broken over the miscarriages and still births so many have had to suffer through. My thoughts are on all the women who have hit menopause and watched their dreams of having children disappear. I am reminded of my single girlfriends, who are in their mid-40s and are starting to wonder if they will ever be a mom.

In thinking about all of these situations, God prompted me to ponder on what it means to be a mom. God said in Genesis 9:7 ESV “And you, be fruitful and multiply, teem on the earth and multiply in it.” So being a mom means being fertile. But I am going to put it out there that maybe God wanted to us be women who nurture and mother many. So being “fertile” might not have to merely be about giving birth. I’d like to suggest that God made women to be mothers to all God’s children.

In Genesis 9:1 God blessed Noah and his sons and said to them, “Be fruitful and multiply and fill the earth.” God said this to men… not to a woman. Noah and his family cared for and nurtured every living creature during the great flood,  making sure the population on earth would not cease. So fast forward this to today and think about how this could apply to a woman who finds herself in a “waiting season” or to the woman who has past her child bearing years.

As I’ve thought about this all weekend, I’ve come to believe all of us are moms. Here are some examples of women in my life that I would qualify as a mom:

• I have a good friend who never had a child, but she deeply cares for and spends countless hours fostering and volunteering in dog rescue groups. She is an amazing mother to many animals who have been abused, abandoned and left for dead. She has saved the life of numerous animals. To me, she is mother!

• I know of a wonderful woman in my church is in her mid-40s and has never been blessed with a child. She is still standing in prayer for the desire of her heart to be fulfilled. But she is a mentor. She opens her heart giving her days to training up the next generation and helping women develop a solid relationship with God. She is a kind, patient, praying woman, and to me, she is a mother!

•  I know of amazing journalism professor who never married. She had spent her life investing in the lives of all her students. She has taught them about the real world. She prepared them for a successful future, and she nurtured the dreams of countless students who wanted to be writers and journalists. She set the bar high and instilled in her class a desire to seek excellence and always celebrated our victories with us. To me, she is a mother!

Dictionary.com defines a mother used as a noun as one’s female parent.  But as an adjective, mother is defined as being a mother; of, pertaining to, or characteristics of a mother: motherly love; bearing a relation like that of a mother, as in being the origin, source, or protector.

Proverbs 22:6 says to train up a child in the way he should go: and when he is old, he will not depart from it. But to me the one thing that is clear is that God never specifically said “your child”.

So if the dictionary acknowledges that someone who has never given birth can be a mom, and even more important, the Bible says to “train up a child,” but never specifically says your own biological child, it stands to reason that a women who cares for animals, children, friends, loved ones or neightbors, could indeed be deemed a mother!

So today, on this Mother’s Day, 2013, I’d like to suggest that we make this holiday about more than a woman’s fertility and celebrate all the mother’s out there that are leaving a legacy by raising up future generations. Happy Mother’s Day.  

I’m late. I’m late. I’ve passed a very important date.

I’ll admit it… I love watching animated movies. I adore the tales of good versus evil. It’s exciting to see the maiden rise up into royalty when she finds her prince. I have identified with almost all of the great animated leading ladies, but lately I’ve had most in common with Disney’s 1951 animated version of Alice in Wonderland.

For most of last week I was like the White Rabbit, who is remembered mainly for the little ditty he sang at the beginning of the movie. Frantically, the rabbit said, “I’m late! I’m late! For a very important date.” I’m guessing there are several of you trying to conceive that can relate to my song, “I’m late. I’m late. I passed a very important date.”

As the days went by anticipation began to mount. I mustered myself into a state of expectancy waiting to see a pink line on a pregnancy test. One quick visit to baby center and I calculated the due date. I was all ready planning how I would surprise my husband. Finally after three long years of trying to have a second child, we were getting our prayers answered.

In this same time frame, it seemed like several friends were announcing they were again expecting… for one it would be their sixth child. It was a flood of good news, and I was elated because I was going to finally be able to be a part of that exclusive club. You know what I am talking about… that group of women who for the next nine or so months only speaks about baby things… conversations about growing pains, doctor’s visits, and whether to breastfeed or not. I let my guard down and began to day dream that finally it would be my time to feel complete and normal instead of hollow and alone in my infertility haze.

Sadly my day dream would suddenly turn into a nightmare with the first drop of blood. I began to realize that I am now like the Mad Hatter – who is having tea with his friends the March Hare and the Dormouse. Their constant tea party never ends because to them it is always 6 pm. I can identify with how they feel trapped… waiting for something to change. For them it is the time, for me it is to stop the 28-day cycle by finally being pregnant! Every month the reset button is pushed. I am back at day one and with that comes a rush of madness waiting on a dream to come to pass.

The day before I was supposed to go to the doctor for a blood test, I start bleeding. And with that shedding comes a tidal wave of emotions. I’m up one second and way down the next. It feels like madness to me. I don’t need a hat full of mercury to feel crazy. I feel as down as the Mad Hatter put it, “I can’t go no lower, I’m on the floor as it is.”

Was I pregnant? Or was I merely just late? Honestly, I don’t even care to know because I am swimming in a whole other area of deep pain. The torture of having to try again. The pain of waiting. The agony of defeat knowing that the answer to either question above is a complete tragedy for me.

By night’s end, I am sitting on my toilet riddled in tears when I begin to sense a prompting from the Holy Spirit: A reminder that faith in God includes having faith in His timing. A verse brought to my mind is Habakkuk 2:3: “For the vision points ahead to a time I have appointed; it testifies regarding the end, and it will not lie. Even if there is a delay, wait for it. It is coming and will come without delay.”

What I do know is that I have longing to have a second child. I believe it was a desire the Lord dropped into my heart since I spent the better part of 2012 trying to “let go” and couldn’t. So here I charge again into the next month, working to quickly heal any emotional scars to be ready to try again with a whole effort and not a half heart.

I summon my strength from God’s promises by putting myself in Sarah’s shoes, who waited a long time in agony to have a child. Genesis 18:14 says “Is anything too hard for the Lord? At the appointed time I will return to you, about this time next year, and Sarah shall have a son.” Sarah had her child, just as spoken.

So I will fight for my child by standing in faith just as I am instructed in Psalm 37:3-4 “Trust in the Lord, and do good; dwell in the land and befriend faithfulness. Delight yourself in the Lord, and he will give you the desires of your heart.”

I will shout at the mountaintops!

There is not a living soul today that is perfect. We all have problems and issues to face. There are things about us we don’t like and wish were different. Some the battle is with self control. Lots struggle with addictions, while for others it is coping with medical issues. For me personally, struggling the last five to six years to conceive and keep a child has been the greatest mountain of my life.

A mountain is any problem in your life that is keeping you from living the life God designed for you. So in my case, I am certain that God never intended for me to walk around fearful, doubtful of my future and scared I will miscarry if I ever get pregnant again.

I’m not a mountain climber, but I’ve scaled the precipice of infertility and recurrent miscarriage for far too long. I’ve climbed and climbed only to be right back at the base. Over the years I thought I was making progress only to realize I had been lost on the mass running down trails that had no end. Blaming God, welling up anger, operating out of fear and trying to control my destiny only seemed to make it seem I was climbing with a 100 pounds of weight on my back.

What I’ve learned through all this time is that it was never my job to scale the mountain. I could never have the tools needed or the experience necessary to get to the apex. The more I tried to take matters into my own hands… the more the mountain just grew larger and larger. Pressure mounted and cracks formed in my marriage but not in my mountain.

The good news is that there was someone… a great mighty man… who all ready crumbled all our mountains. He stared down the beast and claimed victory over all our problems! So I realized that instead of trying to solve my problem by figure out a way to defeat infertility and keep from losing babies, all I have to do is believe in Jesus and in what the word of God says.

So Jesus doesn’t call me to scale peaks, but He does ask me to take an active role in my destiny! When I accepted Jesus into my heart, I made a covenant vow with Him. That mean by His blood I am able to claim the authority bestowed to me and speak to the mountain!

Jesus said for us to speak to the mountain in His Name. It is our responsibility to believe that you receive when you pray. Matthew 21:21 says Jesus replied, “I tell you the truth, if you have faith and do not doubt, not only can you do what was done to the fig tree, but also you can say to this mountain, ‘Go, throw yourself into the sea,’ and it will be done.”

WOW! What a promise! It is my responsibility to speak to the mountain of infertility and miscarriage in my life. Instead of complaining about my issues, I will plead the blood of Jesus and thank Him for healing my medical issues. I can demand everything in my body to line up and function as it should. I can command that all generational curses associated with my problem be broken for me and my future daughter. I can kick out and ride any fear, doubt or jealousy by speaking out and lining up my mind with God’s will!

So here is how I will speak to my mountain:

1. I will speak to the mountain and command it to be removed! (Mark 11:23)
2. I will use the faith God has given me because faith has something to say. (2 Cor. 4:13)
3. I will guard my words and speak nothing negatic. My tongue speaks life and not death (Proverbs 18:21).
4. I will not ask or beg. I will demand God’s will to be done for what I have authority over. (Mark 16:17)
5. I will not be conflicted! I understand that I will not receive anything from God if I waver.  (James 1:6)
6. I will be a believer and not a doubter.
7. I will not waiver in my pursuit even if I do not get pregnant immediately! I will remain patient and remember that I might have to speak every day for a very long time trusting that every time I do speak, cracks are forming!
8. I will have faith ­ – remaining firm in knowing that one day… the mountain will fall! Scott and I will be blessed with a second child!

Just think of all the miracles that can happen if we all started speaking to our mountains! Will you join me in speaking to yours?

(A special thank you to Karen Pope of Heart and Soul Ministries for inspiring this blog post!)

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