No good thing comes with doubt

I recently heard a Pastor at my church say, “When you pray for something, there cannot be any doubt within that prayer. You have to believe with 100% certainty that what you are praying lines up with God’s will and Will Be Done.” How many of us ever realize that having a teeny bit of doubt can hinder what God wants to do for and through you?

“Therefore, I say to you, all things for which you pray and ask, believe that you have received them, and they shall be granted unto you.”– Mark 11: 24

I have read that scripture before, at one point it was tapped to my dryer, so every time I did laundry I would have to look at it and read it. BUT It never really dawned on me that the little bit out doubt that was inside of me was hindering my prayers! It was hindering what God wanted to do for and through me. Knowing all of this now, I wish I could have realized this Before I went on my mission trip, because I know it would have been an even richer experience, but I know it went just as it should because God was in control.

It was last Sunday, and as I’m listening to the sermon being preached, and staring at my connect card (it’s a card we will out weekly and we can put prayer request at the bottom) well as I’m starting at this card I being to write and I know it was all God who was writing! I had not one ounce of doubt about my prayer request and I asked my church to come together and believe with me that this is God’s will and it will be done! All last week I prayed and Thanked God for the change that is happening! Then today I put the same prayer down and asked the church once more to come together and believe with me on this topic!

“For where two or three are gathered together in my name, there am I in the midst of them.”– Matthew 18:20

I know for a fact that every single person that is praying for my family is believing 100% that everything is being worked out for the good of my family! Even though it has only been 1 week since I asked and began praying for the topic, I can ALREADY see the blessing that are being poured out on me and my family. I can already see the answers to my prayers unfold before my eyes. It is a beautiful thing to know our God is a faithful God and he hears our prayers! I thank the Lord that I finally understand how much of a hinderance doubt can be and the enemy no longer has that hold on me!!!!

It is a beautiful thing, because the more we grow and have a deeper relationship with God the more that our Children will be blessed! The more that we learn about the word, the more we can teach our children and impact the people around us. I want to live to my life, not for me, but for the people around me! I want to impact as many people as I can, and the more that I can learn and grow the more that I can help those around me!

Reflection on my Granny

As I sit here and think and take in the news I received this morning I cannot help but to reflect back on life. Reflect back on all the good and bad times I have had. All the times that God has done a miracle in my life, and all the times the enemy had me in his hand. Yesterday, I received news that my granny was in the hospital with kidney failure and she would more than likely, not make it until morning. She had a blood clot in her right leg, that gone unnoticed at the nursing home so long that gang green had begun to set in. She was several dehydrated, and was just not responsive at all. As my cousin is telling me the news that she isn’t doing well, she asked if I would go to the hospital with her and see Granny. So I went, and I am glad that I did because I got to spend a good 10-15 minutes by myself with her.

At first I just sat quietly just looking at how fragile she looked, at how skinny she was, and how wrinkly her skin was because she was so thin. Then I got up and I prayed over her, I would touch different parts of her body and pray that God would deliver her from her pain and make it go away, that if this was her time that he would take her so her pain would stop. I prayed over and over while touching all different parts of her body and I just felt a peace, the more that I prayed. I did have a few scary moments when her breathing would stop, just for a second, then would catch up again. After I was done praying, I stood there and told her about Lily. How Lily got to see Cinderella and go to Disney World. I told her about Halloween, and that Lily was a ladybug, but we called her Lazy bug because I pulled her around in a cart. I told her that Lily had started ballet, and really liked it. I showed her silly pictures of Lily, even though she could not open her eyes. I just sat there and talked to her like normal. A few times I would adjust her pillow, and she would hold her head up while I fixed the pillow. Then I slide her body over a little because she looked uncomfortable. I told her that we were going to church and that Lily LOVES her sunday school class. I told her that Lily loves learning about God, and that she was going to grow up in a Godly home. Most importantly I told her I loved her!

My granny is not a biological grandparent. She is my step-dads mom, but she has known me since I was small, a good 24 years now. Ever since I first met her she always treated me like a true blood grandchild. I was the first grandchild that she had, and when I was small I would go over to her house and spend the night. I remember her calling my mom and asking to watch me, and spend the night. I could always eat, drink, whatever I wanted. We would play with the dogs, or look through all her old year books from the 60’s thru 80’s, and pick out people who I knew. Then more cousins came around and we would always go to her house and hunt Easter eggs. During Thanksgiving she always made the dressing different that other grandparents but it was yummy. And never once, even with other blood grandchildren coming along did she make me feel less.

Then came a point in my life when my mom and step dad separated, I was about 18, and I did not see her as much. I did not go over there as much, and holidays got more complicated and sometimes I would not make it to her house. I could say, I wish I could have gotten to see her more during those years but I will not. What good is it to wish to change the past when you have the present. Eventually I got some sense knocked into me and I started to go see her more. Thank goodness!

Then came along Lily! Her first great grandchild. I am so thankful to God that Granny was able to spend time with Lily and watch her grow these past 3 years. I am thankful that Lily was able to see Granny and remembers her, you do have to say Granny with the dog Angel and she will go oh okay yeah. I am thankful that I got to go up to the hospital and have those last moments with her! Even though she was not responsive, I know in my heart that she heard me. I know in my heart that she heard and knew I was praying over her body for the pain to subside. I know that she knew I was there! I know my Granny is in a much better place now, she gets to see her Family and be in God’s wonderful Kingdom in Heaven!!

Overcoming Fear with Purpose

A couple of Sundays ago while I was in Church, a lady went up to the steps going up to the altar and knelt down. This was during our Worship service, when church first started. As I sang and watched the lady, I assume she was praying, I had this nudge in my heart that I needed to go down there and pray for her. I asked myself, gosh Tiff really? The nudge did not go away. I decided that I would stay where I was and pray for her, besides going all the way down there. Still, the nudge did not go away until she stood up and went back to chair. As I stood there thinking to myself, gosh, what opportunity did I just miss? Did I have a chance to help her, or someone she knows by actually going DOWN there and putting my hand on her back and praying?

Another story, there is a gentleman that walks up and down Hwy 98 all the time. I see him just about every time I leave my house. At first he always had the same clothes on, carrying the same color plastic bag, with a big beard and hair that needed a trim. I told Evan, we really need to give him a backpack and maybe a shirt or something of yours you think might fit him. From a distance, and driving by he looks about(ish) Evan’s size. One day, he had a new shirt on, new pants, and had a clean face and trimmed hair. Still, I feel that I need to give him a backpack with some clothes or something inside. Evan has told me I think we need to give him my black jacket so he can be warm this winter. What could hurt from stopping, getting out of my car with the bag, and telling him what is in it, and that I feel the Lord wants you to have this and invite him to church with us? All the could say is no thanks and walk away. My husband has seen him walk away from a car that pulled over before, but you never know the intention of the person in that car. I’ve thought maybe if I start off with I feel the Lord, or the Lord has placed it on my heart, maybe he will be more receptive to stop?

This is something I struggle with a lot. Was that nudge that I felt in my heart from God telling me, Tiffany you need to go bless this lady and pray for her? Tiffany you need to give this man what I have instructed your husband and you to give? Or was it my own head telling me these things, and I’m going to go all the way down there to the lady or to this man and look like an idiot? I should not let FEAR keep me from listening to that voice. I heard a couple of months ago, that you never want to ignore that voice telling you to call a person. Since, I have heard that I have been faithful (80% of the time, as opposed to 50% before) in following through with that voice.

My main problem is FEAR & REJECTION! I feel that I am not worthy enough, or I do not know enough to go up to a stranger and give him something because I FEAR he will reject it or me. I know deep in my heart, my passion and purpose (somehow) is bring God’s glory to people worldwide. I know my passion and purpose is to go to other countries, spread God’s word and help them in some way, form, or fashion. If i am EVER going to be able to fulfill that purpose that has been placed within my heart, I need to Seek the Lord more earnestly, and put on them Big Girl Panties and DO what has been placed on my heart instead of chickening out.

So, as soon as I am done on here, I am going to grab that backpack, and place it by my front door. Then when my husband comes home, he can pick out an outfit or whatever he feels lead to give to this man, the jacket, and some food inside this backpack. Then we are going to PRAY for this man, and that God will guide us to him so we can give him this gift, and go find him. No more FEAR stopping this girl from fulfilling the calling that Lord has placed on my heart! You never know when the person you stop to help is actually going to bless you more than you bless them? Maybe that is why God has called you to this person?

Oh yes, another plus in my not letting Fear drag me down, is what an awesome way to physically teach Lily about Love and how we are to Love one another. How are to bless others and share God with them! She is so young but I need to start BEING THE EXAMPLE!!!!!!!!!!!

 

Fallen but Saved by Grace

I have not written on here in a while, and I do apologize for that. It has been a busy, stressful, trying, happy, joyous, couple of weeks. I had family come into town, playdates, helped out at my church, a wedding, Plus my weekly visits to my mom, and other activities that it seems like the first half of August has been busier than normal for me. I am not used to doing so much and seeing so many people in a short amount of time. Don’t get me wrong this business was great, and it was a new experience for me, but it also opened up my eyes as to how quickly I can fall. How quickly I can put God second or third to life.

Before August, almost every morning I would get up and have my quiet time with the Lord, read a little, and wait for my Lily to wake up. We would make pancakes at least once a week in the morning, and would go for walks and we had a routine down. Of course there were days I would sleep to late and couldn’t have my quiet time, or read, but I still made time to pray. As soon as my world got a little busier everything went out the window. I no longer kept track of what chores Lily did for the day. I no longer could get myself out of bed at 7, and I slept until Lily woke up. I no longer had my quiet time with the Lord or prayed as much and as deep as I did before. I know longer made myself smoothies in the morning or made pancakes with Lily. All of the little things I love doing each day I no longer had the energy to do. As I sit here and think back on how I let just a teeny bit of business create havoc in my life, the sadder I feel. I put life IN FRONT of God and that is NOT what I wanna do. That is not what I intentionally did, I let my old bad habits get in the way of my relationship with the Lord. It just brings me down knowing that, Wow how I let it all slip away.

I will sit on the floor with Lily and explain something to her and how something relates to God. I will tell her how we need to treat people how we want to be treated. I will sit down and read the bible to her before she falls asleep and we will sing kid bible songs. I have not wavered in my trying to teach my daughter about the Lord, but yet I let myself slip away from Him. That just hits me hard right there. How I could expect my daughter to walk in God’s path but yet I can let myself slip. It really opens my eyes as to how EASY it is, as a human, to slip off that road the Lord has paved for us. How easy it is to let the Lord slip to number two, then number 3, and maybe off our top ten.

Direct my footsteps according to your word, let no sin rule over me. Psalm 119:133

But there is a BRIGHT side to all of this. God is waiting with OPEN ARMS for us to say ‘Lord, I’m sorry I have let you slip down out of the number one spot, please forgive me for walking off of your path and please help me get back on and stay there! Thank you lord that I am still here to recognize my ways and come back to you.” Isn’t that just Glorious? That even when we slip a little or all the way to the bottom, that we can turn back and God is waiting with Open Arms to welcome us back. His love for us is so unbelievably magnificent, and I just pray that you truly do know that.

Nothing can ever seperate us from the His love. Romans 8:38

I am thankful that I am able to recognize that I need help, and cannot go about my days Joyfully without the Lords presence. I know with my daughter turning 3 next month, that my life will soon become busier, and I’m thankful I can learn how to put God first NOW, so that I will not waver in the future.

We know how dearly God loves us, and we feel this warm love everywhere. Romans 5:5 

Looking up through obstacles

The Cloud Shadow (Anti-Crepuscular Rays)

The Cloud Shadow (Anti-Crepuscular Rays) (Photo credit: Jason A. Samfield)

Over a year ago, I posted on my Facebook that I did not know what the will of my life was, I did not know where God was taking me, what I was supposed to do, I was basically lost. In this time of confusion and wonder, I really overly thought everything. I thought there might be something wrong with me since I wasn’t sure anything. The day before I wrote my note on Facebook, my Pastor said “What has God placed in your heart? If you are supposed to be a missionary, well then you can and will be one.” At the time I did not know what God placed in my heart, I was not sure of anything. I was looking in ALL the wrong places for my answer. My mom wrote (on this note) Maybe it is to be a great mother to Lily, A great friend, A wonderful person to work for and with. Look at the opportunity you have to speak to all the people who walk in th store. Maybe a kind word to someone may change that person, God gives us opportunities everyday. You do not have to have a specific title. You are a Blessing just by being you! Spread that around A snippet from what Mrs. Roberts said was The Lord lays it on your heart and you are compelled to obey.  If you don’t have that compulsion, your family, friends and neighbors are your mission field. My sister-in-law confirmed what everyone else told me, a piece of what she said was to be a mother to Lily first and invest in her character and moral/spiritual foundation, and that is my calling right now.

At the time I took everything everyone said to heart, I had 16 comments and all of them were from the heart, and I love and thank everyone who helped me then. Now that it has been over a year I can look back and go WOW have I grown in the Lord. I have grown SO much. I went from being a woman who was lost and confused, to being a woman who is confident that I am on God’s path for me. It is amazingly wonderful how our Heavenly Father works in us and how we are constantly growing in the Lord. It is wonderful how I can look back and say Everyone was right, I know that with confidence that Everyone was right. I can TRULY appreciate everyone’s comments now! With Lily my #1 mission at the moment I will do whatever it takes, educate myself, to make sure I instill the morals, values, spiritual foundation, and be a mom that she can look up to and say my mom is a Godly woman.

I believe the first step in getting over the confusion is to Look Up and seek God. In the book I’m reading (a place of healing), the author’s friend Dan, a race car driver, told her “that when a driver gets bumped and starts to spin he does not look at the wall. Their natural instincts tell them to, but their training tells them to keep their eyes on the track and steer out of that spin. You see, if they look at the wall, they’ll freeze. But if you look down the speedway and steer toward that open space, all your nerves are concentrated on that and not bracing for an impact.” That is what us humans do, we fix our eyes on the trials ahead, like I did when I was confused, and we allow ourselves to be fearful. We think I cannot do this, I won’t recover, I don’t know what to do, etc.. and we brace for an impact. Well we really  need to look up to God, and set our hearts on the things above. Look up and pray to God for wisdom, pray to God for strength, just pray. Lay it in his hands. It is amazing how your perspective on life changes when you SEEK GOD and His Wisdom! When you pray for the scales to be taken off your eyes, and your ears to be open so you can hear the Holy Spirit talking to you. When you open up your hearts to Him and let Him in FULLY and Completely. He WILL show you His will for your life, and He will bring you the peace you are longing for.

I can truly say that I am blessed to be at a Church where every service I take so much from it. I am truly blessed to have met some ladies along the way who have really helped me understand the word better. I am truly blessed to have wonderful family, friends, and my husband, who see me growing in my faith and tell me I’m doing a wonderful job. All of the books I have read and blogs I have read have really and truly shaped me into the person I am today and I’m truly thankful.

A pastor of mine said, when God shows you the next step you are to take, or shows you His will, or something you are supposed to do; do the next little step the best you can do. Do that little step and let that step bring all the Glory to God, and once you have mastered that step, then take another. I just love that and how that can be applied to anything. Whatever place you are in, remember to keep God first, Let the first song you sing, be praises to our God and King.

 

Just Jump and He will catch you

I LOVE the summer time! I love everything about the summer; short, tank tops, swimming, boating, pool, beach, flowers, small afternoon rain showers, everything! Being a born and raised Florida girl here at the beach, I would So rather be in shorts and a shirt, or swimming somewhere than be cold! I dislike the cold with a passion. Now, that I stay home with my Lily, we have been going to the pool or beach at least once a week. Then on the weekend we go on my moms boat! Well, recently the weather has not been cooperating very well and it has been raining a lot! If it isn’t raining it just looks yucky, or is thundering because it is raining a little north of us. This is the longest stretch we’ve gone without going to the pool all summer. BUT today it is BEAUTIFUL and we finally made it to the pool.

When we got to the pool, I put the arm floats on Lily, and the ring around Taylor (the little girl I watch 3 days a week) and let them go. Every time we get in the water, I take a little time out and work with Lily on holding her breathe under water, and kicking her arms and legs to get her swimming. Each day she gets a tiny bit better. It has helped if I go swim under water and show Lily, so that way she will want to imitate me, haha. So, that is what I did today, and to my surprise she took her arm floats off and tried to swim under the water. She did not go very far but the fact that she, herself, decided I want to do it too and tried made me so happy! She would stand on the last step and jump and try to swim under the water, while i caught her. It was great! Well, so I thought.

Taylor decided she wanted to throw the ring in the pool and have me go get it and throw it back to her. Okay, that was fine I will play along with her. Eventually Lily wanted to join and said mom I want you, and before I could say anything Lily jumped, off the last step, and was trying to swim under water. Okay, now I’m a good 7-8 feet away running/swimming as fast as I can to get Lily. I finally reach her pull her up and she wiped her eyes off like it was nothing. Now, in my frantically trying to reach Lily, I did see her head come up once and her get a breath of air and go under again but still. I am soooo thankful to God that she was safe, and was actually able to get a breath of air and go back under and swim. I am so thankful that she did not swallow any water at all and I reached her in time before something happened!!! So-So thankful!

I did have a talk with her though and tell her, she CANNOT just go jump and swim. I was so proud of her for swimming and getting a breath and swim some more, that was awesome of her to not panick, but she cannot do that unless mommy is right next to her. She said okay mommy I am sorry. I am not going to scold her for trying to swim to me, or get mad, because she honestly thought she could swim. But instead I tried to lovingly tell her she did great BUT not to do that again! She didn’t do it again (well today at least).

When we came home, got cleaned up and the girls were laying down for a nap, this situation reminded me about how God will keep us from falling. Just like Lily took that leap of faith and jumped, we need to take that leap of faith and jump off. Just like I was there to get Lily BEFORE something bad happened, God will be there to catch you BEFORE you hit the ground. Now he might wait till the last second, or he may catch you before you even jump, BUT he will catch you IF YOU BELIEVE HE WILL. If you Trust in Him with Every fiber of your being, he will catch you! That is just amazingly awesome, in my opinion. I need to be like my Lily and just jump! Do you believe God is going to catch you? If you do, what are you waiting for JUST JUMP!

Animal Clouds & those Joyous moments

As soon as dinner was over, my daughter grabbed my hand and said Momma come play with me outside please! How could I say no, especially when my husband was doing the dishes. We go outside and she loves to pretend there are fish coming and we have to drive the boat away. It is convenient that she has a wheel on a post, to use a steering wheel, lol. Well, soon the fish get so big we have to go into the tree house to get away. As we are sitting there waiting, Lily says momma look at all the clouds, so pretty. We soon were on our backs looking up trying to find animals in the clouds. We saw an alligator, donald duck, mickey mouse, a turtle, cow, elephant, and the list goes on. It was so peaceful, just watching the clouds go by, while Lily points out all the animals she sees. It is BeAutiful to just watch and think how Glorious our God is, and that he created All of this!

I think it is soooo important to take time out of our busy lives, to just sit and watch the clouds go by. To let our children use their imagination and just be a kid! To relax and just take in the beauty of the world that God created. We need to create these moments in our children’s lives. We need to create moments where we can just get down on their level and help create that Beautiful imagination of theirs. Lily has such a great imagination, and she can take anything and pretend that it is a baby, or animal. For example: we have this vine that grows on our back fence (can’t remember the name) but it creates these big seed pods (I guess you would call it that). Well Lily will take three and pretend she has a mom, dad, and a baby and play for hours with those seed pods. I think that is so important, to let our kids be kids and play and pretend and have NO cares at all.

This world we live in can be so busy, and can keep us on a Go-Go-Go kind of life. It is so easy to forget that we need to take time out to just Relax with our children and look at the beauty of the world. I thank God for this opportunity to be a stay at home mom, and that I can have this precious time with my daughter. It is Amazing and I would not change a THING! I know that God has me here to teach my daughter and I finally have the family time that I wished I had! How are you creating those joyous relaxing moments with your children?

Joyfully His,

Tiffany