Who are you competing with?

Just the other day, I was listening to a podcast while getting ready and I felt overcome with anxiety.  I couldn’t quite pinpoint the source of my worry.  I was listening to totally inspirational stuff.  The woman’s voice coming from my phone was glowing with excitement at the adversity she had overcome only to lead her to the absolute top position in her company…also my company. Then, boom.  It hit me.  I felt like I was in competition with her.  This feeling has plagued me since I joined.  I was always wondering why other coaches had too many messages to answer, while I was fighting to get people just to respond back to me.  Once again, that feeling of I’m just not good enough had crept back in.  The enemy.  He hates us.  He knows full well what gets to each one of us and he feeds into it. I stopped, looked in the mirror, and thought, “I have never been good at competing with others, but I am great at competing with myself.”  I have always been an athlete, but one who fights to better herself every day.  Any time it came to racing another person to a goal, I froze and failed. I was competitive cheerleader through high school and college.  Long-distance, 2-time marathon, runner in my mid-20s.  To a short-lived Cross-fit stint between my two marathons. Oh yeah.  I can compete with myself.  That’s what I have always done.  And you know what?  I can beat myself, every single time.  I know that truth in my heart.  I learned new stunts and routines.  I beat my fastest running times.  I lifted more weight and more reps.  I. Can. Beat. Myself.  And I am the only one standing in the way of myself.

God has not give me a spirit of timidity but one of power and love and self-discipline.

I will not let the enemy keep me from my dreams, because that’s what he does my friends.  Did you know that?  If you are feeling not ready, apprehensive, nervous, that’s because something BIG is about to happen.  You just have to decide, are you ready to fight for it?

identity

Yesterday, I came to the conclusion that I have always had something to find my identity in, but I think that is true of most people.

When I was a young girl in school, I was smart.

When I got into high school and college I was a cheerleader. I told everyone that.

My last semester in college I started dating this guy so I was his girlfriend for 4 1/2 years.

After we broke up, I started running. Then, I was a runner. I found myself telling people so and it was a fact most people knew about me for my adult life.

Then, the unexpected happened. I was injured training for a marathon and never really healed. I didn’t know who I was. I couldn’t hang out with those friends anymore because they were doing something that I could no longer do -> run.

I struggled in trying to find my place in this world. I suddenly didn’t know where I belonged anymore.

I had been back in church for a year or two at this point so I was slowly but surely starting to recognize the gospel. So in the past 2-3 years I have found my true identity.

And, that brings me to yesterday I was sitting in church listening to the message when I had to write my ideas down.

I don’t ever have to wonder who I am or where I belong anymore, because I know that I am His and He is mine.

identity

That is where my identity lies from now till forever, in the love of Christ. I don’t ever have to wander this world alone again. I am saved by grace through faith.

For by grace you have been saved through faith.  And this is not your own doing; it is the gift of God.  {Ephesians 2:8}

What about you?  Where do you find your identity?

unanswered prayers

unanswered prayers

I thank God every day that my ex-boyfriend and I never got married.  That was 5 years ago and I can’t imagine where I’d be if we did.  I can only think lonely, depressed, and unhealthy.

So, sometimes He says, in His infinite wisdom, “No.”  We may be hurt and cry and pout but, in the end, we thank Him, because like an earthly father he is acting in our best interest, even when we think He’s being unfair.

I’m sure you’ve seen or heard the saying – God has 3 answers for our prayers: Yes, Not Yet, or I have something better for you.  It’s so true, right?

I love this illustration of how we want to hold on to something so badly we don’t see what He has for us is so. much. better.

Just-trust-Me

We only need to trust.  Are you trusting today?  What is God asking you to let go of?

my cup overfloweth

Remember my Strangely Dim post?  Well, God decided to hit me upside the head…like I asked.  He decided to show up in my classroom on Monday.

I had just read an email first thing that morning before the kids got to class.  The email had upset me.  I was having a hard time being present so I did what anyone would do in that scenario, I called a class meeting.  This is a time we take to say positive things to others.  We give “compliments and appreciations”.  Students share what others did that they are thankful for and give out compliments.  It’s usually a feel-good time for all.  Little did I know…

We got all around the circle and the last student said, “I just want to pray for “Johnny.”  This “Johnny” is a student who has recently moved to our school and has had a hard time adjusting to the climate of our classroom.  You see, we love each other.  Well, my students love each other so much, sometimes I can’t get a word in edgewise.  (Ha!)  Well, “Johnny” has had a history of violence and it continued at our school.  I had been extending grace to him and I’m sure glad God had allowed me to do that because as soon as the last precious boy said he wanted to pray for him, my new student said, “Pray?  What’s pray?”

My jaw dropped that was a true God moment if I have ever had one.  We were sharing Jesus with someone who has never even heard of Him.  I felt His presence.  I knew that this was His doing.  He opened that door which I had been praying so hard for.  The rest of my students erupted with various comments.  “God loves you!”  “We pray when we put our heads down during the moment of silence.”  “We talk to God that way”  “If we wanted to count all the times God thinks about us, we would have to count all the grains of sand in the world!”  Oh, those precious children.  Thank you, thank you, thank you.  I, unfortunately could lose my job if I spoke to this child…but I didn’t need to.  God was reaching him through my class.