Finding God in your Tough Moments

How do you handle things when they don’t go your way? Do you talk to God?

Do you ever ask yourself, “God what did I do wrong to make you punish me like this?’

Through out my life things have happened that I was defiantly not thrilled about. The old saying comes to mind, “you win some, you lose some.”

During my path of growth and faith maturity, I have learned a couple of things, 1. things happen and there is nothing you can do about it. 2. It all depends on how you see the situation.

The definition of turmoil: a state of great disturbance, confusion, or uncertainty.

I know a lot of times I used to get mad when things happened that disrupted my life. I would automatically blame God when things went south. I would even question his very existence.

I’m telling y’all, the devil has a field day with my thoughts.

But the truth is, it’s our own feelings and actions that cause us to think this way. If we are thinking of he bad all the time, how can we see the good.

When something doesn’t go your way, how do you react? Think of the last time you experienced something that was wrong or it changed your day completely. Did you say “God why me?” or did you say, ” God, what is the lesson you are trying to teach me?”

I used to always ask “God, why me?”

Failed relationship, “God why me?”

You know I am broke, how am I going to pay this bill? “God, why me?”

I have to work longer hours, and I want to go out, “God, why me?”

When in reality, this is what should have been my thought process.

Failed relationship – God was protecting me from a person who wasn’t meant for me

No money – God, I promoted you to a higher paying position

You know I am broke – God, how are you handling your money? How can I bless you with more if you are not being careful with what I have blessed you with.

I have to work longer hours – God, you were complaining about money and now I have made an opportunity for you to make more money.

It really is all about how you see the situation.

It is always easier to see the bad in a situation, however we have to train our brains to look for the good in every situation. Look for the blessing over the burden.

God will bless you in his timing, not yours. You are here to serve God not the other way around, We put our focus on way too much of the worldly things, rather than focusing on what God wants for us.

Take a few minutes today and think on what has God saved you from. What happened? How did is play out? Did you notice the blessing in disguise?

Here is my testimony:

I was 20 and in love. Gosh, I thought I knew everything. I had a good job, a great guy, attending and very much involved with my church. I made a few doctors visits and was told having kids maybe difficult for me. I don’t even remember if PCOS was a thing then. At the age of 21, I found out that I would be having a baby and couldn’t have been happier. On 12/09/02, at the age of 22, we welcomed our son into the world. I had a c-section and I remember telling my then husband, don’t let him leave your sight. I was already being over protective, but hey that’s what moms do. A year went by and well, life changed. Before I knew it, I was divorced by 26. Oh man did I blame so much on God. How and why could this be? Around the age of 24 when we separated, I began talking to someone instead of focusing on what I needed to be focusing on, and that was my family. Once everything was done, I began life as a single mom trying to make things work. I wouldn’t say dark days, however some of those days weren’t the best at all. Some days were worse than others, but I will say this, the one thing I do remember was that I only spoke to God when I absolutely needed or wanted something or it was to blame him for the life I was not happy with. Finally at the age of 35, I decided to put God before everything. My decisions, my life, before I even spoke, I talked to God and you know what, things still went wrong. However, the way I viewed life with God on my side was different, how I looked at the situation and reacted was different. My friends changed, some people are still here others are gone. The guy I thought I couldn’t be without, and who was completely wrong and toxic for me, was gone. Don’t get me wrong, he was a good person, he just wasn’t good for me. Little did I know the biggest test of my life would be on March 13th, 2017. On this day, which is also my dad’s birthday, I would be terminated from my job. Still a single mom running on Jesus and Coffee, I was unemployed. Talking to my son about it was one of the hardest things I think I have had to do. To reassure him we would be ok and there wasn’t a need to worry. After about 30 days, I knew my life as a dispatcher was over and it was time to retire. Listening to others issues and problems for 18 years was long enough. I do applaud all the ladies and gents who are still able to continue to work as a 911 dispatcher. You are the real silent heroes and I will forever back the thin gold line. So, the job searching began and disappointment followed, but I stayed praying to God. Cutting back and not spending money like you usually can is harder than you think. Not having a job is a humbling experience. On August 21st, 2017, I started the next chapter of my life and started my first day at my new job. Not only that, it was everything that I had been praying for. No more working holidays, working shift work, and if I do have to work a holiday or weekend, it’s from home and I can be around my family. Being terminated was a blessing in disguise, I would have never left with out being pushed out the door. God knew that too. He knew how passionate I was with helping others. 911 was my life, and I was hurt, I was mad, and I needed answers. When all was said and done, only God knows the plans for your life. (Jeremiah 29:11) Although I wasn’t where I wanted to be financially, I was going to make it. I made it through training, and with all my years of supervising at my previous job, I was promoted to a supervisor within a year. Please understand, when God has yourbest intentions, he makes sure to put you at levels where you belong and absolutely nothing can stand in the way of the blessings God has for you. Even with all these blessings, do y’all know I still had the audacity to ask “where’s my Boaz?” However when it did come to finding a person who is for me, I seriously thought my bad decisions from my past was why I was still single and it was haunting me. I will share something else with y’all, when I was married, I would always say that I wanted a house full of boys, and after being blessed with my first son, I wasn’t able to get pregnant again. Now I spoke this to God back in 2002. Today, guess what, I am engaged and I have a house of 4 young men and a dog named Reggie. God knew having boys at that time was not in my best interest and look now almost 16 years later, prayers answered.

The reason I am sharing my story is to show you God always has your best interests. Everything happens for a reason and in its own timing. Just because things aren’t going the you think they should, does not mean they won’t happen. Don’t block your blessings thinking negatively.

Remember, it’s a bad day, hour or week but it’s not a bad life.

Don’t lose sight of your blessings looking at what went wrong. Focus on the blessing and don’t allow the burdens to overcome you.

God loves you.

Blessings.

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Goals are meant to be Broken

September will be my month for sure!

Every month I set goals for myself, and I strive to break each and everyone of them. However there are times when things happen and I can’t. I never allow a goal I didn’t reach hold me back from breaking my other goals.

I usually write them out and leave it on my desk so there is a daily reminder for me.

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I look at them throughout the month to keep myself on track and it also helps me not lose focus on my goals.

Goals are a great way to keep yourself accountable for your work. I usually try to keep my goals at a reach so that I do not get discouraged.

If you set unrealistic goals you are more likely to just stop and not want to do it any longer.

I put my goals just far enough out of reach that I have to put work into them. If my goal is too easy, then it wouldn’t help me to keep pushing towards my ultimate goal.

These small goals are just the minimum, I am using these small goals to get me to the big goal.

YOU MUST START CELEBRATING SMALL WINS TO REACH BIG GOALS! 

Breaking goals is a passion for me. I have a very competitive spirit, I always have since I was younger. I have been working on my blogging and I am still having difficulty with it, but I am trying and that makes me feel great. It is a goal that I will attain and break through. Blogging is something I know I can conquer and overcome.IMG_1430

I know very well what I am capable of and I know that with hard work and dedication I will get there.

Comparing yourself to others is the absolute worse thing you could do to yourself.

I find myself at times envying those blogs that seem to have it all together, but they were once where I was and they overcame this so why can I? Why can’t you?

I have lots of ideas, but putting them on paper is another story.

For the month of September, I have decided to try something different. I am taking my goals with me. We will be on the move! I am very much into bullet journaling, so I have created a page just for my September Goals.

I have to stay the course and work towards what I need to. Distractions and set backs will not be in my future this month.

One of my goal is to grow my audience for this blog, so my focus right now is getting those to follow my social medias: facebookinstagram, and twitter. Please follow me and I will follow you back. Just mention that you read this blog.

My layout for my goals for September looks something like this:

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Having this baby in my hands for the month and looking at it every time I open my journal will keep me on track, and will definitely help with keeping my eyes on my goals.

I love organization and I love to know what exactly I need to do. This allows me to do both, look at what I need and work to get to where I need to be.

I have a few things going on this month but its not something I can’t do or handle. I also have a few more ideas for my journal but I will have to save them for next month, I don’t want to over do it and lose hope.

How do you track your goals? Do you reward yourself for crushing those goals?

I reward my small victories with an extra coffee, or a new pen. Those bigger goals I accomplish I may treat myself to an extra dessert or a new shirt. Depending on the accomplishment, that is how I reward myself.

This month I hope all you goal setters are breaking through and crushing them.

Reward yourself with a cup of coffee when you do. 🙂

~Blessings

 

The Spirit of the Fruit – Love

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But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self control. Against such things there is no law – Galatians 22-23 

Love: noun – Seeks the highest good of others

Definition of love:

1. an intense feeling of deep affection

2. a person or thing that one loves

How hard is it to love someone? How hard is it to love someone who has been mean, rude or evil to us?

When I think of love,  a couple things come to mind; a feeling I have for someone special and my son.

Being a mom is super tough in this aspect. I have to be strong for my son and be the example. Although at times, my example is not reflecting God.

The way God loves us doesn’t seem to cross my mind either. It is more of a rage and hurt feeling. I know I have to be the example for him however it would be much easier just to be mean or rude right back.

WWJD? Right?

I have been studying Love – Nine Fruits of the Spirit and this has really helped me with the aspect of loving like Jesus. There are people who can be rude or unbearable at times, however we have the choice on how to react to this.

I have learned to love like Jesus and this puts in much better mood, and it also does not give the other person power over my feelings and over the way I handle the situation.IMG_1276

For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life. (John 3:16)

When I think of how God has loved me at my most difficult times, why can I not return the favor? Why is it so difficult to this simple action? LOVE!

Booker T. Washington said, ” I will not permit any man to diminish my soul to hatred.”

This touched my spirit is so many ways. I have been hurt and I have also hurt others. My life has changed in the worst way and it definitely has changed for the better. I have had my share of ups and downs as well. Everyday I thank God for showing me favor and giving me way more than I deserve.

“…let us not love with words or tongue but with actions and in truth” (1 John 3:18)

This Scripture really hits home with me when showing love and how I should be loving others. One of the absolute heaviest burden to bare is holding a grudge. You are not going to be able to have a happy and loving life if you are mad and upset. Life gives you difficult moments and also the best moments. Continue to love the way God has loved you.

If you are having a hard time forgiving someone ask God for help. Pray, “Lord, forgive me, I can not forgive.” Pray this often and watch God transform your life and soften you heart. Remember forgiving others is not for them, it is for you.

Love is an action directed to another person that is motivated by our relationship to Jesus Christ. Love is given freely without a personal reward in mind.

Love one another as Jesus loves you.

~Blessings.

 

 

Go to Your Room

As a child, we were punished and sent to our room, and don’t come out until you’re told to.

Now that I am older, I realized that maybe going to my room isn’t a bad thing at all.

When I “go to my room” it’s to spend time with the Lord. I use the alone time to get back in communication with God and to recharge my spirit.

The world has so many ups and downs. Life pulls us in all directions. From family to work to friends, financial problems and maybe bad relationships, spending alone time in your rom with God can make all the difference.

I am currently working on a bible study to share with the world and I use this time to get my thoughts together. I need direction, and who better to go to than to God.

I think the alone time you spend with God makes life a lot easier to deal with. Having God constantly on your side makes life easier.

Life is hard, but with God you’re never alone and you don’t have to go through life alone.

Try it, take time out each day to “go to your room” and read God’s word. It will refresh and renew your mind.

Blessings.

Morning Coffee

Every morning I wake up, I have a routine that I follow:

  • Thank God for waking me – it’s always a blessing
  • Of course stretch, who doesn’t
  • Bathroom
  • Make coffee

As I sit here writing, I can smell my coffee being brewed. That has to be one of the most amazing smells in the morning. Well, right until my son decides to put on every last drop of his cologne. LOL

The first sip of coffee instantly puts me in a fantastic mood. Coffee and French Vanilla.

As I am drinking my coffee, I open my morning devotional, Starting Your Day Right by Joyce Meyer. I absolutely love this devotional, it sets the tone for the entire day. I believe your first thoughts of the day will determine how you will spend your day. I spend my first thoughts with my coffee and Jesus. fullsizeoutput_80f

As I read today’s entry, I can’t help but think how truly blessed I am to have this life. How although things were hard at one point, I did make it and kept going.

I tend to think clearer and I focus on what God has blessed me with, rather than what I don’t have or what I wished I had. I try to leave no room for negativity.

During my morning coffee, I also reflect on what I need to be doing rather than what I have failed to not complete. You see I am a huge planner, I have to have things in order and know what my goals are. I keep those goals posted so that I can continue to focus and remember why I do what I do each day.

Everything isn’t always easy and you have to make time for what you want and work hard for it as well.

My morning coffee is a constant reminder that God allowed me to wake up in the morning, so he has a purpose for me.

Blessings!

You are enough…

You are enough! Tell yourself that daily. Look in the mirror and say that 3 times.

Too often we get lost on what the world wants for us and lose sight of what God wants for us.

We try to find outlets in food, sex, money or even alcohol. Those things are truly only temporary and bring you false hope or give you a moment of satisfaction.

God wants the best for you and he wants you to know him and know how much he loves you.

I dreaded sharing my story for fear of what others thought. I know my life decisions have not been the best, I use to use the excuse of well God will forgive me so why not? Yeah I know, pretty crazy right?? IMG_0437

The truth is, your past does not define you as the person you are today. NO decision you have made before this moment matters. You have the choice to change everything you were used to doing. You can say right now, my past is over and I choose to live life with a different outlook.

I have learned a few things along the way of making my mistakes:

  • there will never be another you
  • you are different; thats perfectly fine
  • only you can offer what you have
  • you do matter no matter what someone else thinks of you
  • time heals only if you decide not to dwell in your past
  • WE ALL MAKE MISTAKES
  • learn from what you’ve done
  • never allow your emotions to cloud your judgement

Tell yourself today that you are no longer the person you were and you will step into today with a positive mind set, focusing on your blessings and giving no attention to the negativity. Tell yourself you are more than enough and can conquer anything with God right there with you.

I encourage everyone to share their story, someone needs to hear it.

Blessings.

My Jar of Blessings

For the last few years, I have made a jar of blessings. This jar is very special to me, because it helps me recognize my blessings.

Not just any blessings, the blessings of that day.

Good times and bad, I date them and put them in my jar. Through out the year, I can go back and reflect on these thoughts and then remember how good my life is and how blessed I am. As I have always said, positive or negative, blessings over burdens.

I also use this to reflect on how many times God has come through for me, when I have a hard time trying to figure things out. Trust in him!

Supplies Needed:

  1. a jar or box – I recommend you decorate the jar or box how you want it; something that will always catch your attention and remind you of your blessings IMG_2984
  2. pen and paper – use your favorite color pens, but black or blue work just as well, post-its work but I have a small pad I use to add my messages, something easy to tear away
  3. a positive outlook to recognize your blessings and more blessings

What I do is on the top of each paper, I will put the date and then write down the blessing for that day. I don’t do this everyday, but when something really stands out to me, believe me, I’m jotting it down.

For instance, my son and I go on vacation every June. When I get back, I always write a blessing and a thank you to God for allowing my son and me to travel and return safely.

I add the date, so that I keep in mind that on that date this great blessing happened. I will continue this because sometimes I do fall short, and I need a reminder of how great my life is, and what a blessing it is to be alive.

My first thank you to God looks like this:

  • Date: January 2, 2018
  • Traveling grace to and from Georgia for the New Year
  • allowing me to see 2018
  • family and friends

I sign all blessing with an “AMEN” and “THANK YOU”

Give it a try, if you don’t want to do the entire year, try it for 3 months. See how many blessings you recognize for yourself and family. At the end of the three months, read your blessings and see how much God has blessed you and you also recognize how much you have to be thankful for.

God bless!

 

Seeing the Best in Everything

Have you checked your attitude this morning?

My favorite one is, have you checked your face?

Those two questions are what I ask myself before walking out the door. Your attitude is determined by how you think and how the rest of your day will go. It’s the outlook on what your life represents.

I can fake my attitude however my face not so much.

I can sound like two totally different people, “nice Crystal” and “you get on my nerves Crystal” lol, but my facial expressions are so hard to hide. Im praying on it though.

In the past I have had the worst attitude about life. I hated how things would go my way or how things would turn out.

The truth is, it’s all about how you see life.

When you see something that you like, you are happy, enlightened, and you’re smiling, but if it doesn’t go your way, what is your reaction?

I call those unpleasant thoughts, venting, rants, negative comments….adult tantrums.

I have learned that adult tantrums absolutely help nothing. They actually make things worse and they block your blessings. I can remember not liking someones attitude and it completely gave me a not so pleasant attitude. How that person saw things instantly rubbed off on me and then my attitude continued to go down from there. I am not blaming that person, it was my fault, I let it happen. It was a choice I made.

Having your thoughts and attitude in check with God, not only helps you realize how blessed you are, it doesn’t allow the devil to come in and take over. Focus on GOD.

Remember these couple things:

  1. Focus on your blessings. It may not be in the package you wanted it in, however the blessings is still there and you should embrace every blessing God gives you.
  2. Continue to pray continuously about your short comings. What better person to talk to than God. He knows you, he created you and he doesn’t make mistakes. Know that he loves you and want the absolute best for you.

I use to find it very hard to see my blessings and to be happy with whatever situation I was in. I couldn’t understand it then but I sure do now. I look back not to look at my faults, but to look how far God has brought me.

He knows we make mistakes, he knows we are not perfect, he knows we need him, but we have to trust him completely with whatever season we are in. The good, bad and the ugly.

As you go on with your day, try to pay attention to your attitude but also focus on your blessings. Don’t allow a bad situation to ruin your positive, godly, attitude.

Blessings.

 

Tis the Season to Forgive

Forgiveness, what is forgiveness?

Forgiveness defines as: (noun) the action or process of forgiving or being forgiven 

I used to have a very hard time with forgiveness. I felt so entitled of my feelings, that I felt others didn’t matter and I should never have to forgive anyone unless I feel like it. Look at the immaturity, but I also look at my progress and see growth.

I’ve learned the importance of forgiveness and why I should continue to forgive others not matter how hard it may be at times.

Never underestimate the power of forgiveness. When we don’t forgive others, we aren’t hurting them, we our hindering ourselves from true joy and receiving the blessings God has for us.

Of course I use Jesus as my example, he forgave us over and over and over and he even died for us, why can’t I be so quick to forgive? Why must I continue to question the situation instead of forgive and move on? WWJD? (what would Jesus do?)

I have learned not forgiving someone, doesn’t hurt the person who hurt you, it actually hurts you. You have to forgive people for your health, you peace of mind, and for your over all out look on life.

Let Jesus be the example. He gave his life for you to be forgiven. He knew we would fail him but yet he still forgave us.

Easier said than done right?

PRAY! PRAY! PRAY!

Prayer and constant communication with Jesus can help you with forgiveness, I mean who better to learn from than Jesus himself.

Talking with Jesus daily will get you through any situation and know that he is with you along the way and will help with healing and forgiveness.

I think too often we allow our pride and emotions to take over and the thought of forgiving someone is to far fetched, but keep in mind what the Bible says about forgiveness:

Matthew 6:15 “But if you do not forgive others of their sins, your Father will not forgive your sins” NIV

I keep that bible verse close to me because I too one day would want my Father to forgive me. The gift of forgiveness is worth more than any amount of money or material possession.

If someone hurt your feelings….forgive.

If someone wronged you in someway….forgive.

If someone lied on you….forgive.

Your relationship didn’t work out…..forgive.

This holiday season, give the gift of forgiveness.

Merry Christmas & Happy New Year.

Blessings.

 

Focus on the Goal

Blogging has become a fantastic hobby for me. I have to say I absolutely enjoy writing and sharing my truths.

I read a lot of blogs and I can see so much potential in the writers. I know for me when I get the notification that someone has read my blog or commented makes me smile. I enjoy reading the comments under each post. I can say, I love engaging with people whom I never met and discuss their views and opinions about my writing.

However, we do have those days where we have very little traffic and no one seems to care what you write.

REMEMBER WHY YOU STARTED!

Every now and then, check yourself. Ask yourself, why did I do this? Why did I start to write and why did I want the world to read my writings?

I can tell you for me, I started because I wanted to share what I have learned, overcome, pushed through, and prove to myself that yes, you do have a purpose.  There is a reason that God has you here on earth.

It feels absolutely amazing to see the comments that I receive about my blog and I really enjoy talking about Jesus and talking about how he has changed my life. Thats my niche, what’s yours? What’s your passion?

I recently had a conversation on Instagram with a female who asked how my christian blog was doing, and she had concerns about not having enough content.

One, the fact that she asked me had me all in my feels, I was so stoked, I was like OMG you asked me, but then I told her the philosophy I use “Ask God what to write about.” I feel as though if I talked to God about what he wants me to write, writing should be pretty easy. I mean who better to spread his truths but the man himself, and he can use my writings to do so.

The point of this post is to remind each and every blogger, focus on your goal. Why did you start? What do you want from this?

Yes you will have people follow and unfollow, comments will flow in and then it will be dry. You’ll have high numbers and low numbers, but focus on your goal and keep that in the front of your mind every time you begin to out your thoughts on paper.

Keep writing, someone wants and needs to read your work!

BE BLESSED!