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life

Mental Attacks….

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Sleep is supposed to be peaceful, right? Rest is good for your body, blah-blah-blah.

I don’t really mean that, I just need you to feel my sarcasm though the blog. (insert hilarious giggle) Last night, I had another nightmare. In this nightmare, There was an evil presence in my house. I couldn’t say “JESUS”. It wouldn’t leave my lips. So on the inside I screamed it. I almost rolled off my bed (or that’s the feeling I had). I ended up downstairs and stuff was wrong. For a moment, I was paralyzed with fear. Then I remembered something. We have authority to tell the enemy to flee! That’s when the tables turned. Not only did I say Jesus, I told the enemy to LEAVE MY HOUSE. I was very specific. 

I said all of that to say this to you, YOU HAVE AUTHORITY!! When you feel attacked, speak the WORD. Jesus overcame satan’s attack by speaking the word of God. You too can speak the word and demand that the enemy flee. 

Attacks will come, but you don’t have to crumble in fear. Stand on faith and speak the truth. 

 

Ivy Out

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life

Will the REAL Andonnia PLEASE STAND UP!

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Good googly-moogly (yes, googly-moogly).

This quarter of 2013 has handed me my pride, my scars, my war wounds, and my struggles on a silver platter with a smelly stinky heap.

I can remember approaching my birthday with gratitude and then with a sense of awe. I was surrounded by lots of amazing people, abundance seemed to be at hand, and I just felt good. THAT probably ended there. The next two and half months came with direct slams at ME. I am very hard on myself when I know what I am capable of, I venture to think most are. Let’s just say, when I needed to stand tall I fumbled. Then doubt set in. After doubt was numbness. . . then temptation. If I never saw that pattern before, typing it helped it seem familiar to me. First the enemy drew me away from my communion with God by blocking the new pattern I had: Worship and Praise, ask, thank, Worship and Praise, repeat.

Man, O, Man I snapped an angry parent at a football game. I was looking for graphic representation of what happened, I can’t really get graphic without offending, so imagine. I pushed horrible thoughts in my mind about not being good enough, then justifying “slipping”. You know “slipping”, when you have been doing well at something and then allow yourself to backslide. Not only do you mentally allow it, but you make it ok in your heart. You tell yourself things like, “I’m human” and the ever present “God knows my heart”. Dear hearts, God is a jealous God who does know your heart. HE knows what you are capable of and what He created you for. Please know that there is always a way out and/or a consequence. 

After the temptation rises, it doesn’t bow down easily. The only thing that kept me afloat is the split second clarity to ask God for help. I cried out to JESUS, audibly in most cases. I asked Him to stop me because my self control was gone. Every time, He stopped it. EVERY TIME. Would you also like to know that the guilt was worse than the temptation? I was still allowing the enemy to harass me. Allowed. The quicker I got back to worship, the quicker he would flee. I had to will him away, to command him to flee, on purpose. While I was in the flux state that allowed me to justify my flesh, I didn’t want different. It’s an awful place. There is no peace in that place. Your mind is constantly going and never really arriving to any conclusions worth having. 

As I now look back, I also know that God allowed me to share my weaknesses with a few people who were key in reminding me who I really was. They heard me, without beating me with the Bible, and reminded me of how big and forgiving God was. I thanked them for not  painting me red and hanging me in the town square. Vivid picture isn’t it. Sometimes that’s how we treat people who come to us broken. Thankful that God is not like man. Instead of public exposure, I received private encouragement. I am in a much better place spiritually. It made me sing, it made me write, it made me pray a little differently. In hindsight, I was in that funk – which affected my funds, my choices, my emotions, my relationships, and my sanity – a lot longer than I needed to be. Sometimes you are looking at the answer and refuse to use it. 

 

I thank God for his mercy. 

 

I share now to help anyone else who has felt publicly humiliated for weakness. We ALL fall short (Romans 3:23), and I embrace you in love right now. Know that God loves you, even in that stuck place. He’s available to you NOW. There are people in your life who will encourage you, right where you are. Hi, I am Andonnia….I need grace too. Let’s get up together.  

Categories
life

Isolated in a room full of people

You would think that with all the people around you, that profess with their mouths to love JESUS, one would not feel alone. WRONG!

I now feel like I am the only woman around me who feels like you can still go about courting and relationships the way it was designed. It’s hard to abstain in a culture that puts sex before EVERYthing. However, I know in my heart that I’d rather please God than fickle folk.

Men and women seem to believe they have know each other physically to be compatible. I know plenty of sexually active people who don’t know themselves. It’s kind of sad. If you can’t be in a relationship without sex, what do you have left. Is it honestly an eye opener to me. Do we really know the hearts of the people we entertain? What do you know about their aspirations? Their health? Their family? Their past? How can you build a future with someone you don’t know?

I feel like a stranger in a room full of people…but one day… That will be different.

Ivy Out

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life

Minute clinic

There is a small ounce of peace that comes when you are delivered from people and their uncanny way of ridiculing your past mistakes. Aim to please God, period.

Categories
life

Writing for a miracle or at least clarity…

How many times have you started a writing project, only to scrap all of your brainstorming? It wasn’t even worth recycling. I forget how taxing the gift of writing can be when you aren’t in a “writing mood”. It’s almost like the weather, sometimes you feel like being outside. However, in the midst of Texas heat, sometimes you don’t. 

Today was interesting. I over think most of the time. Attempt to break down things to get to the simple core so that mental digestion is easier. I look for connections and patterns, links, and clues. Today, right now, I exist. I am in this place where God is leading and I am following. I trust Him. I have no idea what this next season holds, I just know it finally feels different. It isn’t the impending birthday that fast approaches, or the new decade that it brings. It isn’t any sudden health changes, or weeks of the month differences. It genuinely feels different. 

I am holding on to the One, I Am that I AM. I know that I am putting effort, thought and breath into living the best life I can live. I worship, praise, pray, read, study, and journal. I give – time, talent, and money. I deduce only this: the rain soon come. 

 

Living in GREAT expectation, 

Ivy Out

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life

I bet you think this blog is about you. . .

Thoughts can easily take over a woman’s mind. They can start with sensory stimuli and them morph into a body of its own. Thoughts can become fire breathing dragons that block out the sun (and any knights in shinning armor). That is, if you don’t slay the dragon.

Thoughts can cause cesspools to form on dry land in the middle of a Saharan drought. It only takes a second, and your life can begin to spin, with you smack dab in the middle.

What causes this? Your past, fear, doubts, former patterns of success (yes, success can cause whirl winds too), and thoughts of the future. The unknown can paralyze a giant. The Bible says without faith, it is impossible to please God. Well, I believe without faith, it’s impossible to be happy (and subsequently, control your thoughts). The Hebrews 11:1 definition of faith deals with the unknown. If we constantly worry about that which we do not control, how can we defeat the dragon?
Did I loose you? It’s ok, I’m random at times. The point is this, women are emotional. It’s in our fabric. Maybe with the additional rib, and womb, we received extra ability to emote. Emotions are powerful, and when applied correctly, they can prove useful. When emotions overtake thoughts, and that cancer begins to turn into the snowball that leaves us in shambles- we have a problem. Faith eliminates the opportunity for one to be overrun! Is it easy? Absolutely not! What in life, worth having, comes easy. If it were easy, men would understand women (and visa versa). If it were easy, there would be no need for wars or disputes. Taming the beast with faith means surrendering the thoughts that mule over your logic. It means trusting in the One whom you can not see, but surely feel.
No this blog wasn’t about anyone else. It’s a written reminder that I must continue to work at my faith. The many giants in front of me won’t back down. So I must fight to tame and then salt them. Do you fight dragons in your spare time too?

Ivy Out

Categories
life

You are being watched

There are eyes on you, and you may never know who they belong to.

There is a picture circulating around the web and the caption says something like: I wanted to quit, then I realized who was watching. In the picture, it’s usually a parent and a child. I would like to attribute this to your life.

Someone, somewhere is looking up to you. Sometimes, you are blessed to hear from that person. They will tell you how watching you helped them. It’s an humbling moment. When you are aware that you’ve contributed to the success of someone else, you become significant. However, if they never tell you, be significant anyhow.
It’s not just the victorious moments that motivate others, the transparent ones do a great deal! It reminds people that to err is to be human. It lets them know that they can keep going.

I watch many people. I admire most, from afar. Subliminally: thank you. For those who watch me, I pray that I don’t let you down;).

IVY Out

Categories
life

Outlook

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Just yesterday I received a call – a prayer warrior I know passed from cancer. Let me temper that with the fact that I didn’t even know the lady was sick. We used to be very active in a joint venture and she regularly led a prayer call I used to “attend” in the wee hours of the morning. I believe she was under 55, but I know she was under 60. Perspective! My work issues, relational questions, and personal woes seem like nothing while her family is dealing with grief.

While there are seasons for everything, I value the triumphs that I’ve celebrated in my tender twenty-nine years. I have been blessed to see faith at work in my life. My pastor has been reiterating something that hit me recently. When reading about Jesus’ miracles you often read : “According to your faith, be it unto you.” (OR something simular to it.) It’s your faith that can unleash doors or inhibit the savior. One poor city was filled with unbelievers and there Jesus could do no miracles. Am I saying the Almighty has flaws? No, I’m saying WE do. We, human flesh, bearers of choice, made in his image but with sin as a fatal flaw, we make errors. I make them, and if you are honest, you too can count a few. Yet, when we get phone calls like the one I received, you don’t see your hurdles as harshly as you might have.

If you having a hard time, begin to shift your thoughts to the things you can be grateful for. If it gets so bad that you can’t readily think of something to be grateful for, start with life. Begin to thank the Father that you are alive and that you have the activity of your limbs. Maybe you are ill, you have the faculties of mind necessary to read this. Maybe its the comfort of family or friends, or even a pet, but find something to be grateful for. When you spend time dwelling on THAT, it helps to change your perspective. (and today, that is where we will end our focus for this blog…)

 

Ivy Out

Categories
life

Speak life-SHOW love

The seriousness of our words are catastrophic. We can build or destroy with very few letters.
Most people remember very little from their childhood, but it’s near impossible for them to wipe negative words from the fabric of their life. Unfortunately once words are said, you can apologize, but not erase them. Unlike an unsent text message or email, we can’t take words back. It’s so dangerous that even the words that we say to ourselves are fatal.
The tongue can bring death or life; those who love to talk will reap the consequences. (Proverbs 18:21 NLT)

That wasn’t placed in the Bible for us to ignore. I have to constantly remind myself to guard my tongue. Furthermore, I constantly ask God to guard my tongue and my mind/heart. Natural habits need SUPERnatural assistance to be broken. Ask GOD to put his SUPER on your natural and work at it. Be on purpose with your speech. Know that your words CAN HURT OR HEAL.

Speak life. Show love.

IVY OUT

Categories
life

ignorance isn’t a plea…

I am both confident and convenced that some use ignorance as a safety blanket. 

(Got to the punch fast, huh?) I was supposed to share this on Saturday, when it was first given to me, but that didn’t happen. It was actually confirmed before my eyes by the end of Sunday night. People have but to ASK God for wisdom to receive it. We know by reading James 1:5. Very plainly stated… ask for wisdom. So why are some still not wise? I believe it was Maya Angelou, or Marguerite Ann Johnson, who said “when you know better you do better.” I think the crowd in question chooses to hide behind the speculation of whether or not they know. Instead of getting closer to the safety zone…they play hop scotch on the “danger zone line”. Then when asked about their acts of foolishness, or comments, they claim ignorance. This is NOT court, this is life. If you take F out of life you get LIE. If you take Faith, Feeling, and Future out of LIFE you get LIES… what people tell to feel good about themselves…

Yes, I know this is heavy and late. It had to come out of me before I entered Monday. Ask for wisdom. Act wisely. Walk with the wise. Be better for it.