Archive | February, 2016

Wasting Time

28 Feb

I’m noticing I’m spending too much time on Facebook, again. I’m not going to lie. I’ve been checking my blogs that I put on Facebook. In other words, I’ve been looking for recognition in people instead of Jesus. 

See, I told y’all I struggle, too. Like we say in Celebrate Recovery, I have my hurts, habits, and hang ups. I’m sure a lot of us do. I really don’t believe that we can escape this sinful world without a hang up, a habit, or a hurt.

A lot of the spiritual heroes in the Bible struggled, too. They struggled with faith, adultery, idols, multiple marriages, etc. We’re just as human as they were. 

I’ll be the first person to tell you that I’m not perfect in anyway!! I won’t be perfect until I get to heaven. PRAISE GOD!! GLORY HALLELUJAH!!

I desire a deep, intimate love relationship with Jesus. I don’t ever want to get enough of Him. I desire to love Him with ALL of my heart, soul, mind, and strength!! I can’t do that by spending time on Facebook. 

Instead, I need to be in the Word. I could listen to worship music. I can listen to a Bible study (Revive Our Hearts) and even sermons I’ve missed. I don’t want to waste the precious time God gives me each day I’m here.

Are you wasting your time? What are you wasting it on? TV, Internet, social media? Don’t waste your time!! We can’t ever spend too much time with Jesus.

Depression in the Bible

27 Feb

I am writing this for a friend. I have a friend that is struggling with depression. She is being told that she has a demon or Satan in her; which I know is wrong. I hope and pray this blog helps her.

There are a lot of examples of depression in the Bible. So, I’m not using a medical source. I’m going to God’s source. I want others to see that the people in the Bible were as real as you and me. They faced every day struggles; just as we do.

First of all, I will list the symptoms of depression. My source is the ADAA; Anxiety and Depression Association of America. Symptoms of depression are: persistent sad mood, feelings of hopelessness, feelings of guilt, worthlessness, helplessness, loss of interest in hobbies, .decreased energy, difficulty concentrating, insomnia, oversleeping, weight loss or weight gain, thoughts of death or suicide, restlessness, irritability, persistent physical symptoms such as headaches, digestive disorders, and pain.

Now onto examples of people from the Bible. We all know that the Bible is without era. God spoke through these men to write these books. God’s hand was upon their hand as they wrote the Bible. Not only that, but the Bible states that all scripture is God breathed.(2 Timothy 3:16).

I will start off with Hannah. In 1 Samuel 1; starting with verse 6. Hannah would weep and not eat. Her heart was sad. Her husband even asked her why she was crying and not eating.

My next example is Job. Job lost everything. God had allowed Satan to test him. In Job 3:3 “Let the day perish on which I was born.” “Why did I not die at birth, come out from the womb and expire?” If you continue reading Chapter 3, Job continues on about wanting to die.

My last example will be David. David was a man after God’s own heart. God had given the kingdom to David. In spite of that, David made some poor choices. David committed adultery. He committed murder. Later on Saul is chasing him. His own son; Absalom is trying to kill him.

In the book of Psalm, David does a lot of crying out to God. Psalm 3:1, Psalm 5:1-2, Psalm 6:1-3. These are just a few examples of David’s lamenting before the Lord. The book of Psalm is full of David’s lamenting.

In the New Testament, there was Judas. Judas betrayed Jesus with a kiss. He was so depressed over his guilt that he hung himself. After Peter denied Jesus, he ran away and cried. Jesus was in agony, too. In Luke 22:44, the Bible says, “And being in agony He prayed more earnestly, and His sweat became like drops of blood falling down to the ground. Yes, Jesus was 100% God, but He was also 100% man. So, yes, even Jesus had a bout with depression before going to the cross.

Just because a Bible believing Christian struggles with depression, anxiety, bipolar, or any other mental illness-doesn’t mean that they have a demon. It doesn’t mean that they don’t believe in God. It doesn’t mean that they don’t have faith.

Some factors that can lead to depression or another mental illness are: any kind of abuse, addictions, a death, divorce, loss of job, loss of home due to fire or natural disaster, etc. So, there are things outside of our control that can lead to depression. It makes me really angry when people think that because someone is seeing a counselor or taking medicine for a mental illness; that person is “crazy.”

According to the Bible, we are just as normal as anyone else. There are a lot more examples than the examples that I listed, too. You just need to really pay attention to what God’s word is saying when you are reading.

I’m thankful for God’s word. If it wasn’t for the Bible, I wouldn’t know that I am normal. Reading the Bible has helped me to realize just how normal I am. I’m thankful that my pastor encourages the congregation to read through the Bible every year.

So, don’t be condescending to someone that is battling depression. If you don’t know what to say, don’t say anything at all. I will tell y0u from my own experience; someone with depression needs love, compassion, mercy, and encouragement. They don’t need someone telling them that they are demon possessed or they are crazy. Remember, that people in the Bible struggled, too.

 

God’s Gift to Me

26 Feb

It’s the best thing in the world,

To be a God girl.

I’m a daughter and a princess,

Of your Highness.

My Father is the King of kings,

And He makes my heart sing.

I was blind, but now I see,

Why He willing laid down His life for me.

He’s turning my mourning into dancing,

And it’s me, He’s romancing.

I’m so glad that I am His,

And thankful He took the nails in His wrists.

He will NEVER leave,

Or forsake me.

He loves me more than I can understand,

He is also my Husband.(Isaiah 54:5)

He’s adopted me as His child,

He makes my life worthwhile.

He’s everything I’ve ever wanted and more,

I’ve never been loved like this before.

Yes, I am a princess,

And I will continue to serve His highness.

  

Consequences

25 Feb

Since Adam and Eve made the decision to eat of the tree of knowledge, there have been consequences to disobedience. God threw Adam and Eve out of their perfect surroundings. They were banished from the garden forever. 

That wasn’t all. Adam and Eve had to sacrifice the first offering ever. It had to be done for the price of their disobedience. This was the very first picture of something innocent being sacrificed due to sin. In the end; the ultimate sin offering, would be Jesus.

God also told Adam that he would toil the ground. Eve was told that her child bearing would be multiplied. They would also turn back to dust once they died.

There are times, God will tell us something to do or not to do. Just like with Adam and Eve, we have a choice. We can obey or disobey. 

In 2009, a short term mission trip opportunity came up in my church. The trip would be a few days in Biloxi, MS. We would be helping serve at a women’s conference.

I had just started on my journey to healing. I had just started taking my medicine the doctor prescribed for me. I thought it’d be fine to go on a mission trip.

I did talk my counselor about it. She recommended I not go. She didn’t think I was emotionally ready. Tracy told me I didn’t need to go, and a very dear friend of mine told me not to go. I decided I knew better than all of them out together.

In spite of everyone telling me not to go, I went anyway. While we were setting the tables, a lady said something to me. Of course, it didn’t hit me the right way. I started crying, and it ruined the whole time I was there. 

I wanted to go home, but I couldn’t go home. Tracy said he would come get me. My dear friend told me that she would come get me. I couldn’t go home since I had come from the church. I was so depressed that whole weekend.

See, God tried to use others to tell me not to go. There wasn’t only one person, but three all together. God let me go and step into my own mess.

When I decided to disobey God, God said,”Okay, Christina, you think you know better.” He let me find out right quick that I MUST listen to Him, no matter what. After all, Adam and Eve didn’t listen either. 

My consequences were short lived. Even though, I felt like I would never get home.  There are times our consequences can be worse and last longer.

Adam’s and Eve’s consequences lasted them a lifetime. The consequences of disobedience can be a few days, can be years, or even for a lifetime. The consequences can be physical, spiritual, mental, emotional, or financial. 

We need to be sure to ALWAYS, ALWAYS obey God. Be sure to listen when God speaks. Disobedience can cause you dire consequences. It can cost you in so many ways. IT’S NOT WORTH IT!!!! 

Be Mindful

24 Feb

…But we have the mind of Christ. 1 Corinthians 2:16. 

“Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewal of your mind, that by testing you may discern what is the will of God, what is good and acceptable and perfect.” Romans 12:2 ESV
I’m sitting here; at the dealership, waiting for my vehicle. It’s time for an oil change. My hubby was nice enough to get my oil changes with my vehicle.

There are soaps on the tv in the lounge area. Country music is playing over the speakers here in the dealership. I was hoping for head phones in my purse; so I can listen to something uplifting and God worthy. No such luck.

Through the quickening of the Holy Spirit, I quit watching soap operas many years ago. When God showed me what they were really about, I knew it wasn’t good to be feeding that to my soul. Soaps are full of lying, deceit, adultery, fornication, homosexual relationships, etc. Soap operas are what’s considered soft porn. To me, porn is porn, no matter the type.

A little over a month ago, I decided to give up the country music. I do listen to a few songs now and again. For me, it’s listening to the Bible, worship music that glorifies God, or a listening to a Bible based program like Revive Our Hearts. 

The country music was causing some of my anger issues. It was triggering some things from the past. It caused me to beat myself up by saying, “I should have done…” or “I should have done ….” 

That’s what most country music is about. If I would have had the right girl, if I would have had the right guy, if…. A lot of “if’s.” It also talks about drinking, adultery, fornication, sexualizes women & men’s bodies.  Have you ever seen any of the music videos?!?! 

You may watch soaps or listen to country music and it not quicken your spirit. You may watch things on tv that may quicken my spirit, but it not quicken yours.

We should ask ourselves, “Is this the kind of stuff that needs to fill up the mind of Christ?” “Will this transform my mind to be more like Christ?” “Would Jesus watch or listen to this?” 

Yes, I watch TV. I watch the old fashioned shows like Andy Griffith, Bonanza, and the older cartoons. I do watch some modern shows, but I do try to be careful of what I’m feeding my soul. 

We need to remember what we feed our hearts and souls is what comes out. It may come out through our actions or through what we say. It will come out; sooner or later.

What are you feeding your soul? What are you watching on TV? What kind of music do you listen to? What is it doing to your heart, soul, and mind? As I always say and I can’t say it enough, “Pray for God to search your innermost parts!!!!

Cajun French Education 

23 Feb

I’ve decided to do something out of the ordinary today.

I’m originally from La.(Louisiana). Some may think I’m talking about Los Angeles. I’m from Alexandria, La. As me and Tracy say, “the middle of the boot.”

My momma is from the same town. Now, my daddy, that’s a different story. He’s from a town called Marksville, La. He was born and raised there. In fact, some of my relatives helped erect the casino there. The Indians were of the Tunica-Biloxi tribe. My great grandfather was full blooded Indian and full blooded coon ass.

So, my daddy is a coon ass. Y’all are going to think I’m joking, but he actually lives across the street from a swamp. Gators come up in his yard. I haven’t seen one there; which I’m glad. Don’t care to see one up close and personal.

My daddy raised my from the age of 2 years old. Of course, I was around his family a lot. I would spend holidays and some of my summer vacations with my grandmother and one of my uncles. 

I actually think it was my Uncle Richard that introduced me to church. I loved going to church with him. He was Catholic. As most of you know, Catholic Churches have that stained glass with pictures of Jesus’ life etched into them. I remember I’d sit there the whole mass amazed at these pictures in the rainbow colored glass. 

So, I picked up some of the language; the Cajun French. Like most children, it was things I didn’t need to be saying. I didn’t know what I was saying.

Most of you have heard me refer to myself and Tracy as “Nana” and “Padan.” It usually refers to a godmother and godfather. We’ve been called this since Niki was born. Karson and Makaylah will call us that too. Even though, we’re not their godparents, it’s tradition, now.

In all actuality, you look up godmother and godfather in the Cajun French dictionary-it states that godmother is nanan or nanny. Godfather is Parran.

Now, I haven’t researched how the Cajuns came to this conclusion. Now, that I’ve stated it, I know I need to find the origin of the Cajun language. I know that Louisiana became a French Colony in 1731. 

I hope this has been a bit educational for my MS friends. I’ll be telling about my coon ass daddy from time to time. So, there will be more like this in the future.

Thanksgiving

22 Feb

The Bible tells us to enter His presence with thanksgiving, Psalm 95:2. There are a lot more scripture than that to tell us teach us about thanksgiving. I’ve always wanted to jump right to it, and tell God what I wanted instead of giving God what He wanted; praise and thanksgiving. God deserves ALL of our praise and thanksgiving.

Only once; since I’ve known Jesus as my Lord and Savior, have I taken my prayer time and turned it into thanksgiving time. No, it’s not possible to thank God for everything He has done for us and given to us. It doesn’t hurt to try, though. After all, He takes the time to bless me.

I know women that have been on short term mission trips in third world countries like Africa, Lebanon, Southeast Asia, etc. There are even a few that are full time missionaries in these countries. I’ve heard them talk about the “plumbing” some of these places have. Some countries just have a hole in the ground for a toilet. Some countries don’t have clean water. So, every time I take a nice, warm shower, I try to say, “Thank You Jesus.”

Since God opened the door for me to be a part of R3 Ministries, I have learned to be thankful for things like soap, shampoo, toothbrush, toothpaste, being able to go to the doctor, being able to go to the dentist, being free from a pimp. I never realized what and how much I took for granted. They don’t get to go to the hospital. They don’t to get to go to the doctor. They don’t get to go to the dentist.

I also want to thank God for what He’s doing in my life. It seems like so much has changed in a short time. I’ll give you an example. Earlier, Tracy wanted me to go somewhere with him. Tracy is my husband. I told him that I needed to go get ready. It takes me anywhere between 45 minutes-1 hour to flat iron my hair. He told me to wait. Needless to say, he waits until about 20 minutes before he has to leave to tell me to get ready.

There was no way I was going to be able flat iron my hair and look presentable in 20 minutes. I told him there was no way I could get ready in 20 minutes. He said, “Okay.”

Before he left, I was cleaning one of our bathrooms. He came to kiss me by. I really didn’t want to because I was upset. I felt rejected by Tracy. He walked outside. I quietly walked into our bedroom and shut the door. I had to cry and get it out.

He came back into the house, and walked into our bedroom. He asked me what was wrong. I said, “Nothing;” which was a lie. I did end up telling him that I felt hurt. I told him that I can’t depend on him for what I need or want.

Ladies, who is the only person that will ever give us what we want or need with no questions asked?!?! JESUS!!!! I know that. I was praying to Jesus in my head asking Him to wrap His arms around me at that very moment.

Anyway, about 10 minutes later, I was through crying. I don’t even know if it was that long. I got up and went back to cleaning my bathroom.

Two months ago, this situation would have been a different story. I would have been mad as hell. I would have went into a tangent. More than likely, I would have Tracy. I would have spent the whole day mad and crying. My whole day would have been wasted over one little situation where I felt rejected.

So, I want to give thanks to the One that deserves it; Jesus. I could never ever thank Him enough. I’m excited to see what another two months will bring. Hopefully, by then, I’ll be able to take the rejection and just move on without even crying. I can just rest in the love of Jesus.

I used to tell a dear friend of mine that I needed to pinch myself to make sure I wasn’t dreaming. I wanted to make sure all of it was real. I don’t have to say that anymore, because I know that it is real. I deserve this. I deserve to be loved and accepted unconditionally. I am every day.

Ladies, try to remember to be thankful. Even if only a couple of minutes a day; saying a few quick thank You’s to God. It’ll make your day go a whole lot better. It can be a little light added to the dark.