Change, New Seasons, Trusting God

Spring Cleaning

spring-cleaning-jpgCreate in me a pure heart, O God, and renew a steadfast spirit within me. (Psalm 51:10 NIV)

The winter is over and spring has sprung! With spring comes life and newness. God has promised to do a new thing within me this season. I can’t stay in the same place, do the same things, have the same mentality and expect God to do something fresh within me. I have been praying and asking God to help me get to the place I need to be so that He can do the work He wants to do. In order for that to happen, I need to allow Him to do some Spring Cleaning.

During our Winter season in life, things die that are no longer of any use to us along with those things that were not supposed to be there in the first place. God allows these things to wither and die so they can be removed in time. Ecclesiastes 3:1 (NIV) says: There is a time for everything, and a season for every activity under heaven.

Spring Cleaning isn’t something new to many people. At the end of the Winter season and the beginning of Spring we take time to go through everything we own and clean it all up. We get rid of things that we will no longer use and either trash or donate it all. We do this in order to make room for new things. We reorganize our closets and trade in our Winter gear for our spring time fashions. We clean our yards and begin to plant seeds and plants, etc. You know your routine for Spring cleaning.

God comes into our lives and cleans like crazy. He removes every dead, useless, unnecessary and poisonous, out of season thing. The only problem with this is that we are not always willing to let go of everything. Many times we hold on to the very thing that is blocking our blessing. In Ephesians 4:31 (NIV), we are instructed to “Get rid of all bitterness, rage and anger, brawling and slander, along with every form of malice.” When God begins to clean, He reveals things that we never thought could be within us or at least never wanted to admit to. In order for the cleaning process to be complete He had to remove these things.

I am guilty of holding on to dead things including the things listed in Ephesians 4:31. During my lifetime (which has been relatively short compared to some people I know), I have gone through the tests, trials and tribulations that winter brings only to hold on to the remnants of the past. Not realizing that these things I treasured were not only dead but were weighing me down and keeping me from all the promises God made me. I needed to let go and let God do His work.

It’s like hiring a landscaper and not letting him get rid of weeds, dead trees, trash or anything else that is causing the property to look bad as well as aiding in the destruction thereof. As long as all of that is there, nothing will be able to grow because it will kill it before it has a chance. Not only is time wasted but so are money and the opportunity for potential prosperity. We have to let go of the things that are destroying and killing us.

I know that it is hard at times and while we don’t see things as God does, we have to trust Him no matter what. That’s where Psalm 51:10 comes in, we have to ask God to renew our minds so we can understand and mediate on His plan. We also have to ask for a steadfast spirit so we can actually put His plan into action.

I will admit that I am still in the process of learning to fully trust God in everything. I know He knows what is best for me and that as long as I allow Him to have His way; things will always work out for the best. God knows what is necessary in order for our Spring to be fruitful. He knows what we have to get rid of and what we have to keep.

Dear Daddy,

Please forgive us for being disobedient and holding on to things we were instructed to let go of. We did not understand that we were causing our blessings and growth in You to be hindered and possibly destroyed. Please allow us to see You as our landscaper and Spring Cleaner. We know that You are so much more than that, but at this time that is what we need for You to be. Allow us to remember Ecclesiastes 3:1. Please help us let go of everything that is not meant for this season and grab hold of what is so that we can be blessed. In Jesus’ Name, Amen!

Ladies, I EMPOWER us all to let go of EVERYTHING God has instructed us to let go of and allow Him to clean and do His work. I know that none of us will regret it.

What things will you obediently get rid of this season?

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Bettina Allen is currently working in security, with prior experience in customer service. She loves to read, write and dance. She loves God and is on a mission to be as close to Him as she possibly can. Bettina is constantly learning and growing from life’s experiences. God has given Bettina a word and she would love to share that word, along with all of the lessons He has taught her, with others. Bettina resides in Georgia and attends Life Church of Atlanta. Her favorite scripture is Psalm 119:105 – “Your word is a lamp for my feet, a light on my path.”

 

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Testimony Series

My Testimony: Surrendering to God

Happy New Year EmpowerMoments family! We have surely missed you! As we kick off the new year, we are beginning with a series entitled “Testimonies & Lessons”. We believe Revelation 12:11 when it says that we overcome by the word of our testimonies. We pray that our testimony and lessons from last year will EMPOWER you to triumph this year! May God bless you and make 2014 the greatest year of your life thus far!

Search me, God, and know my heart; test me and know my anxious thoughts.  See if there is any offensive way in me, and lead me in the way everlasting. (Psalm 139:23-24 NIV)

If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness. (1 John 1:9 NIV)

When I look back on 2013, I realize that most of the year was about self-evaluation. Towards the end of the year, I had a moment of brokenness. I spent time focusing on myself and my issues. Facing my issues was really hard. Here is a list of a few things I had to accept: 1.) In Fall 2009, I allowed failing my internship my senior year of college to emotionally paralyze me and give up on life (lose my motivation & passion for the Social Work field) 2.) I had issues with lust, loneliness, past hurt and relationships, and dealing with my singleness 3.) I was unfaithful to God  4.) I tolerated negative behaviors (i.e. disrespect, manipulation, mistreatment, controlling behavior) from people that I loved and cared about.

I learned that I had to be honest with God and myself. I had to realize what caused me to be the way I am. I surrendered my heart to God. That was hard for me to do because I was afraid of what would happen (i.e. being out of control and feeling emotional pain). I had to truly let God in and heal me (He still is healing me). I learned that healing does not have a time limit. It’s difficult when you have to open up wounds that you try to keep covered up. I have the habit of suppressing my feelings and things that have hurt me. When you suppress things for a long period of time, something will trigger those events and cause you to deal with them.

Surrendering to God can be scary at first but He can’t help us if we aren’t opening up our hearts to Him. Yes, God knows our thoughts but He would like to hear from us. It’s okay to tell God how you feel.  He wants us to come to Him.

Dear Daddy,

Help me to examine myself and reveal to me things in my heart that need to be changed or healed. Help me to surrender to You and not be afraid. I want to be honest with You, God. I want to tell You things that are on my heart or on my mind. I know You have my best interest at heart.  In Jesus’ Name, Amen!

Ladies, I EMPOWER you to cry out to God. Tell Him how you feel. Only He can heal you and restore the broken places. No person or anything can fill the voids that you have but God. Let Him fill your voids with His unconditional love as well as draw you closer to Him.

What are you surrendering to God this morning? Be free!

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Venus Gilmore currently resides in Auburn, AL . She is an alumna of Auburn University. Venus has B.A. in Sociology with a concentration in Social Organization and Inequality with a minor in Social Work. She plans on pursuing a career in Social Services. She currently serves as treasurer of the Kings Alpha E-line Chapter, the Mamie Reese Scholarship Director, and College Transition Program Director of her sorority Theta Phi Sigma Christian Sorority, Inc. Venus is also a blogger for Radical7even. She is an active Client Advocate volunteer for the Women’s Hope Medical Clinic. She successfully balances all of these responsibilities with her favorite scripture as motivation: “I can do all things through Christ which strengtheneth me.” (Philippians 4:13)

Family, Friendships, Growth/Maturity, Leadership, Relationships

Throwback Thursday: I Believe in Vampires

It’s Throwback Thursday! This EmpowerMoment was originally published on July 13, 2011. Enjoy this blast from the past!

Not the kind that wear capes, have sharp fangs and only come out at night but the ones that you talk to every day, have dinner with you and share some of your deepest thoughts.

One day as I was strolling through “La La” land thanking God for the restoration of a family relationship, I became prey for a vampire. I received a phone call from this same family member that started off really nice but before you know it I was in a full blown shouting match. I hung up without ending the conversation and felt dazed and confused about what had just happened. I had a good “ugly” cry about it before I realized that their issue was not “my” issue and that they had sank their fangs into me, relieved me of all of my good energy and went on about their merry way.

For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places. (Ephesians 6:11 NIV)

Vampires are mythical creatures that live by feeding on other living beings. After they feed on other living beings, they are refreshed and restored. I am sure if you scroll through the Rolodex of your mind, you know a few vampires too. Their approach may be different but the end result is always the same. Every time you talk to a certain person, you may never get into a disagreement but by the time the conversation ends, you feel drained. Sometimes it’s the mere “dumping” of their problems that you aren’t mentally capable of handling. You end up feeling empty and exhausted while they proceed feeling reenergized, refocused and refreshed. That vampire just received a “job well done.”

Above all else, guard your heart, for everything you do flows from it. (Proverbs 4:23 NIV) Most vampires are able to get to you because you have the guard down around your heart. We must protect our heart at all times because our life flows from it. No one can get to our hearts like “good friends and family”…the people we love dearly. After that phone call, I began to take inventory of all of the vampires in my life. Some of them will always be in my life because they are family, so instead of running for the garlic, I am learning how to deal with them and you should too:

  • Return Policy – Give people back their stuff! You need to return all issues that do not belong to you. No longer allow people to make their issue your issue. Hold people accountable and make them take ownership of their stuff.
  • Set Boundaries – This can be hard to do but you have to set boundaries with people. Sometimes you have to change the way that you allow them to communicate with you as well as the frequency of communication.
  • Don’t Dump On Me – Everyday can’t be trash day. There are times when our own lives are in a tailspin and we emotionally can’t take on anyone else’s garbage.
  • Don’t Give Them Power – Stop engaging them. Just cut the conversation short. “You know what, right now I really don’t have the time to talk about this. I will talk to you later.” At this point trying to get them to understand your view isn’t important, just cut the power cord.
  • Be Aware! – Ask God for discernment so that you can see people who were sent to you because you can help them vs. those who really don’t want help. They just want to drain you.
  • Be Ready! – When vampires attack you, Be Ready!  Put on the whole armour of God, that ye may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil. (Ephesians 6:11 KJV)

Dear Daddy,

Thank You for Your protection and Your love! Help me to recognize the vampires in my life and show me how to best deal with them. When I leave my guard down and come under attack, restore me immediately and remind me that these people only come to take me off of my heavenly purpose. Remove those people from my life whose sole mission is to feed off of me. In Jesus’ Name, Amen! 

Today, I EMPOWER you to take inventory of the vampires in your life and really think about how you are going to deal with each of them. Guard your heart and don’t allow them to drain you of your energy and your time.

Read a related EmpowerMoment: Who’s Changing Your Thermostat?

Please click here to vote for EmpowerMoments in the 2012 BlackWeBlog Awards!
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Ms. Chancee` Lundy lives in Washington, DC and is an entrepreneur as she is the co-owner of Nspiregreen, LLC, an environmental consulting firm. She is also a dedicated daughter, sister, friend and community servant. She has used her gift of public speaking to lead workshops across the globe speaking to crowds as large as 10,000 people. Her guiding scriptures this week are Philippians 4:11-13 “Not that I speak in respect of want: for I have learned, in whatsoever state I am, therewith to be content. I know both how to be abased, and I know how to abound: everywhere and in all things I am instructed both to be full and to be hungry, both to abound and to suffer need. I can do all things through Christ which strengtheneth me.”

Forgiveness, God's Grace, God's Love, God's Mercy, Self Forgiveness

A New Day – A New You!

I was recently given one of the most thoughtful gifts that I have ever received.  Someone made a calendar for me.  It included pictures of me as well as famous quotes on each month.  It had all the special days of my year such as my birthday and holidays. I was so excited that I had received this gift.  I looked at it daily because there were pictures of me.  As I flipped the pages of the calendar I realized that every month was a new ME: a new picture of me, a new quote for me, a new life for me. That is how God works in our lives.  Things from our previous months and previous years don’t matter; He simply flips the page to our new beginnings.

 “And all the trees will know that it is I, the Lord, who cuts the tall tree down and makes the short tree grow tall. It is I who makes the green tree wither and gives the dead tree new life. I, the Lord, have spoken, and I will do what I said!” (Ezekiel 17:24 NLT)

The Lord is always turning the page in our lives. There have been many situations in our lives that we wish that we could simply remove from the calendar.  However, we do not have to remove that day because it is now a part of our past.  God has already forgiven us for whatever lies in our past.

He is so rich in kindness and grace that he purchased our freedom with the blood of his Son and forgave our sins.  He has showered his kindness on us, along with all wisdom and understanding.” (Ephesians 1:7-8 NLT)

Many times we would like to simply forget things from our past and act as though things never happened.  The problem with that is we forget where God has brought us from.  We do not have to be ashamed of our past or attempt to erase it because it has already been forgiven.  Those experiences that we wish we could turn the page on assist us in becoming the Christians we are.  It is a testimony that attests to where we used to be weeks, months, years ago.  Walk toward your vision, fulfill your purpose, and reach your destiny. Today is a new day!

 Dear Daddy,

 I come before You today thanking You for turning the page on my past indiscretions.  I pray for strength in order to ask for Your forgiveness from the things I am still holding on to. I need guidance in whatever new endeavors that I am moving towards.  Teach me to be an example, based on my previous sins, to show others how far You can bring them. In Jesus’ Name, Amen!

I EMPOWER you today to forgive yourself of your past so that you can actively participate in your future. Do not let the things that have happened on previous days creep into today and steal your joy.  God has already forgiven us of the things that we continue to carry around. Learn to flip through toward a new YOU!

How have you learned to move past the mistakes of your past to get to the new you that God has ordained? Share your story with us.

Read a related EmpowerMoment: Keep At It

Please click here to vote for EmpowerMoments in the 2012 BlackWeBlog Awards!

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Ms. Sherita Shelton currently resides in Nashville, Tennessee.  She holds a Bachelor’s degree in Psychology and a Master’s in Professional Counseling and is currently pursuing her counseling license.  Sherita works as a therapist and case manager for children as well as adults.  She facilitates groups for single women and offers mentoring and individual counseling for her clients.  Sherita’s favorite Bible verse is Proverbs 3:5-6: “Trust in the Lord with all thine heart; and lot not on your own understanding. In all thy ways acknowledge him, and he shall direct thy paths.”

Submission/Surrendering, Trusting God

Holding On Too Tight!

A while back, I was thinking about the lessons and messages that I have been receiving about surrendering. At that very moment a movie scene popped up in my mind.  It was a scene from a comedy/drama/romance movie called Ghost (1990).  In this particular scene, con-artist Oda Mae (played by Whoopi Goldberg) is instructed by Sam (Patrick Swayze) to give a FOUR MILLION DOLLAR check to nuns because Sam wants to make sure the money is used for good and out of the hands of his friend/colleague Carl.

With clinched teeth, a forced smile, and a tight grip, Oda Mae has a hard time giving up that check.  I like to give, but I probably would have a hard time releasing that check too.  Four million dollars!  Watching this scene is hilarious, but the Holy Spirit helped me to realize that Oda Mae responds like many of us, and particularly me, with our lives.

If you cling to your life, you will lose it, and if you let your life go, you will save it.  (Luke 17:33 NLT) Maybe we grip our lives because we want to continue holding onto the control of our lives and do things our way.  Maybe it is because we want to obey and surrender only when it is convenient. Perhaps we think that if we surrender, we are going to lose our lives physically.  It is possible that we believe that God doesn’t want us to have joy and fulfillment or just maybe we think life is satisfactory the way it is.  Even more, we are probably focused on pursuing worldly things or we lack patience and trust in God to do what He says and has proven He can do.  In any event, we are afraid to let go and give control to God.

I must remember that when God created me, He didn’t intend for me to live independent of Him. Therefore, in order to move forward in my Christian walk, I must fully SURRENDER!

I have been gripping my life like Oda Mae gripped that check.  I have been gripping everything that God wanted control over or wanted me to release.  I have been gripping my many plans, my fears, my money, my concerns of what others think about me, my dating/love life (or lack thereof) and my need to do everything and be everything for everyone.  I have even given Him areas of my life and subsequently I have taken them back.  I’d say I believe and then the next minute I don’t believe.  Jesus asked the boy’s father, “How long has he been like this?” “It has often thrown him into fire or water to kill him.  But if you can do anything, take pity on us and help us.” “‘If you can’?” said Jesus. “Everything is possible for one who believes.”   Immediately the boy’s father exclaimed, “I do believe; help me overcome my unbelief!” (Mark 9:21-24 NIV)

Since I have been alerted to my lack of surrender to God, the Holy Spirit has helped me loosen my grip on my life and those areas that I gave God little to no access.  I have also surrendered plans that were of good intentions because it wasn’t what God wanted me to do at the time.  I have finally severed the last means of communication between me and my ex-boyfriend/first love; I am going to trust in God to bring a God-fearing, handsome man along just right for me.  I have learned that I have to seek God’s counsel in everything I do.  I have also learned that I can’t be everything for everyone.  It is okay to take the ‘S’ (Superwoman) off my chest unless that ‘S’ stands for SURRENDER (everything to God).

Through the testimonies of Hannah and Ruth, I am reminded that when you trust God and let go, you gain so much more!  Hannah, who yearned and prayed fervently for a child, gave her son back to the Lord. She promised God that if He gave her a son she would do this so she took him to the priest and allowed the priest to raise and ready him for his destiny. (1 Samuel 1:1 – 2:10)  She made him a coat and visited him every year but she had to let go.  Ruth left her family to go with Naomi, her deceased husband’s mother.  She surrendered to God and a new course for her life.  Consequently, she married again, gave birth to her first child, and was able to also bless Naomi—her mother-in-law.

Surrendering my life doesn’t necessarily mean I lose it physically.  Instead I will gain my life, the life God designed for me all along with peace, fulfillment, and deeper intimacy with God.  Surrendering my life doesn’t just benefit me, it benefits others too.  Oda Mae didn’t get that money but she was able to help bless the nuns and their charity as well as help Sam unite with the love of his life, Molly, and save her from danger.

Dear Daddy,

Thank You for pruning me, defining my character, and setting me apart.  It is not easy to go through this process, nor is it easy to render control of my life to You.  But please help me let go!  Help me to trust You and remember that my life is no longer my own.  I am here to glorify You.  In Jesus’ Name, Amen!

Ladies, today I EMPOWER you to trust the Lord with your lives.  After all, He knew you before you were in your mothers’ wombs.  He created you and knows your purposes.  He has your best interest at heart and will never fail you.  So, don’t worry about your children.  Put them in God’s hands.  Release that person with forgiveness and God’s Love.  Let go of that relationship He doesn’t approve of.  Seek Him before you make plans.  Let go of always needing control.  God is qualified to manage your life more than you.  When you let go, you’ll experience God’s liberty and peace!

Ladies, what areas of your life do you need to surrender to God? Share your story with us.

Read a related EmpowerMoment: Surrender It

Please watch the $4 Million scene from Ghost!

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Ms. Tannika Moore loves the Lord and loves to write!  Besides writing poetry or editing written work for family and friends, she currently works for NEIU Educational Talent Search program.  She help assists Chicago public high school students with their reading, writing, etc. as well as helps them consider and prepare for college.  She, like many of her students, is the first of her family to graduate from college.  She earned a Bachelor’s of Arts in English-Professional & Technical Writing.  God, the Creator and Great Father has also created her to be a Compassion Person and Encourager and so she loves to encourage people according to God’s Word and help them to see, think and become better thru her support, actions and writing.  Her favorite scripture comes from Philippians 1:6, For I am confident of this very thing, that He who began a good work in you shall perfect it until the day of Christ Jesus.

Attitude, Encouragement, Forgiveness, Self Forgiveness, Throwback Thursdays

Throwback Thursday: The Mostaccioli Massacre

It’s Throwback Thursday! This EmpowerMoment was originally published on May 31, 2011. Enjoy this blast from the past!

Sunday, March 27 was my mother’s birthday and I decided to host a small dinner for her at my house. I only invited a few close family members and friends. I’m not a big cook so I kept the menu short and sweet. I settled on one of my few specialties, mostaccioli. Anyone who has ever tasted my coveted pasta dish knows that it’s the bomb dot com! My special blend of sauces, herbs and meat is just scrumptious, if I must say so myself! Unfortunately, that day when my house was full of “just left church growling bellies” my mostaccioli was the absolute worst! It was so nasty that I couldn’t even eat it. What went wrong, you ask? I changed my routine and used a different brand of ground turkey simply because I wanted to save a few dollars. I literally could not sleep for nights after that horrible mistake. I was so consumed with thoughts of how people were talking about me and my food. I was so ashamed and upset that I messed up. I literally could not forgive myself for making such a silly mistake. You’re probably reading this and extremely confused wondering why it bothered me so much. Well, when I make a mistake it really affects me. In the same light, when I sin I have a hard time forgiving myself and I’m willing to bet that some of you struggle in that area as well. Preparing a bad pasta dish is definitely not a sin but the effects of that incident are similar to how we process our mistakes. Let’s answer some questions to help us work through our self-forgiveness:

  • How did I mess up like this? Well, I decided to take the cheaper route and buy some turkey that I was unfamiliar with. Maybe your route was easier or quicker. But the easiest paths often lead us down a road that we really shouldn’t be traveling and into sinful behavior. “Enter through the narrow gate. For wide is the gate and broad is the road that leads to destruction, and many enter through it. “ (Matthew 7:13 NIV)
  • I’ve messed up so badly, what will people think of me? As I said before, I was so concerned with what people were saying and thinking of me as a result of the food that was eaten in my home. Maybe your mistake has been broadcast for the entire world to see. It’s hard for us to move past our mistakes because we’re too worried about what the world thinks of us. Obviously, I’m not trying to win the approval of people, but of God. If pleasing people were my goal, I would not be Christ’s servant.” (Galatians 1:10 NLT) (And if everyone is honest, they’ve prepared a bad meal or two themselves! wink wink)
  • God forgave me, why can’t I forgive myself? I was literally tossing and turning in my bed wrestling with this yucky food incident. I was so mad at myself and left wandering how I could mess this up. But then I remembered what I told you at the beginning of this rant—I’m not a big cook! So, yes there was room for error! Romans 12:3 tells us not to think more highly of ourselves than we ought. (NIV) Remembering that you are HUMAN, that you were BORN INTO SIN and that you will NEVER BE PERFECT should make it a lot easier for you to forgive yourself for that slip-up. Stop being so hard on yourself!

Truthfully, I’ve held onto my mostaccioli massacre far too long. Today I’ve decided to release it! And yes, I will attempt to create my dish again…we can’t stop pursuing our assignments simply because we mess up! Only next time I will stick with what I know works and I challenge you to do the same. Follow the Word because it’s the tried and true recipe for success!

Dear Daddy,

Thank You for Your unfailing love! Please forgive me for my slip-ups. I know there is no condemnation for those who are in Christ. Now that You have forgiven me, free me to forgive myself. Show me where I stumbled so that I don’t have to walk this path again. In Jesus’ Name, Amen!

Ladies, today I EMPOWER you to forgive yourself for any mistakes that you’ve made. Repent and release yourself because God already has! Walk in freedom today my dear!

Have you ever made a mistake so terrible that you found it hard to forgive yourself? Share your story with us.

Read A Related EmpowerMoment: Unmasked

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Mrs. Kristen Harris is a wife, mother, entrepreneur and dedicated servant. She is extremely passionate about women’s spiritual advancement, hence the founding of EmpowerMoments. As an avid reader, Kristen enjoys reading the Bible more than anything. Her driving inspiration is when God says to her: “For I know the plans I have for you, plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.” (Jeremiah 29:11) She currently resides outside of Chicago, Illinois with her wonderful husband and three lovely daughters where she is an active member of New Life Covenant Church.

Conviction, Decision Making, Direction/Guidance, Stress, Trusting God

My Scene In The Quicksand

For so long, I’ve felt like the women I see in movies that get stuck in quicksand running from someone or something.  They are treading, splashing, and trying to keep their heads above the sand so they don’t sink; inevitably, one of two things happens: they get rescued or they sink.

My scene in the quicksand lasted much longer than it should have.

For as long as I can remember, I’ve been jumping into situations that look good from a distance and after getting caught up, I would try to run but quickly start to sink.  I would find myself over and over again wearily treading the ‘quicksand’ and barely able to keep from sinking.  I have always felt His favor was upon me and in hindsight I recognize that for a long time I took for granted that He would rescue me from the quicksand that I kept finding myself in.

I prayed and prayed for God to change the man I was in love with or give me the strength to leave him, but at night I’d cling to him with all my strength as if to prevent God from removing him.

I prayed for better jobs and for more money to do what ‘made me happy’ and then I would swipe my credit card until it could be swiped no more.  I would get upset, run, and sink again.

Time and time again, I’d pray for God to help me control my impulsive emotional eating, for me to just be content with Him, and not look for satisfaction through food.  Then the moment I finished my prayer, I would go eat my ‘last’ bowl of ice cream or two, wake up too big for all of my clothes, and run yet again.  And yes, I sank again.

My desires and actions did not align with my prayers or what I claimed were my values.  I was holding onto everything that I was praying so hard to be able to let go of!

But God!

One day he dropped a scripture that I knew backwards and forward into my spirit and it took on a new meaning: “For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.” (Jeremiah 29:11 NIV)

And just like that I felt like I could stop running.

I recognized that while I thought I was running to God, crying, praying, and begging for His help, I was running from Him!  I realized that I needed to run to Him with my burdens, issues, concerns, and prayers and give them to Him.  I realized I had to give myself to Him, if I wanted to stop running and sinking.

“Cast all your anxiety on him because he cares for you.” (1 Peter 5:7 NIV)

I had to let go of everything.  I had to surrender.

Dear Daddy,

Thank You for always being willing to carry burdens that You know I cannot bear on my own.  Thank You for Your constant reminder that You will never leave me or forsake me and that I can always bring everything to You.  I pray that I will continue to surrender more and more of myself to You each day.  In Jesus’ Name, Amen!

Ladies, today I EMPOWER you to refuse to sink!  When you feel that you are drowning, allow God to be your life jacket and put all your weight on Him.  He will pull you through! 

What are you holding on to that is weighing you down, causing you to sink lower, and pushing you farther away from God?

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Ms. Tiffany Huff is the devoted mother of two boys, a blogger, lover of food and travel, and aspiring entrepreneur with a passion for helping others live out their purposes. She is looking forward to growing in her walk and honoring God through sharing her EmpowerMoments. One of her meditation scriptures is Romans 12:2: “Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is—his good, pleasing and perfect will.”