Helping you obtain a better life!
It's not easy being a Christian. Take this journey with me to a better life full of joy and freedom!
Asking Christ in your life and allowing him to change through you is one of the best decisions you'll ever make. Join this journey with me to experience the joy and fulfillment that God's promised to you. By reading my blog, daily text/scriptures, and following me on social media sites, I will help you in area's of your life that it's been difficult for you to change. Who's ready for a life change?!
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Not Really That Single
I’m warning you this may hurt a little. If it doesn’t hurt you then it will confirm the decisions you’re making in your life. I’m single. Have been for about six months now. Some say that’s long some say it’s not long enough. Whatever the case, I don’t believe I’ve really been single for that six months. Technically, no one has claimed me as their “girl friend”, but there’s a couple things that have taken my heart.
First, randoms, which Heather Lindsey calls woman or men that you know you won’t marry, but you keep them around for the times you get bored or lonely. To be honest I’ve had randoms almost the whole time I was single. We did everything the qualities in a relationship included. Holding hands, going out, talking everyday all the time, flirting. From the outside looking in you wouldn’t have thought we were “friends”. Many people tell me,“you’re single! Be free!” Be free to do what? Not having someone breathe down my back but use them when I want that boy friend girl friend feeling?
Second, things I like. You’ve probably heard it many times if you’re single. “Travel, learn something new, focus on your career, focus on school and grades, spend as much time with your friends.” I don’t think people realize how sensitive single people are. It’s so easy for someone else to tell you what to do with your life then when it is your own. Oh how I hated those words, and still yet hate them today. Have we forgotten really the point of singleness?
I believe with my whole heart that if you have the desire in your heart to be married then God will fulfill it. God gave Abram and Sarai a child when they desired, even though they were of old age. If you feel like all hope is lost remember that God gives you the desires placed in your heart, he placed them there. He wouldn’t have done so if he wasn’t going to fulfill it. But singleness, I believe, is building a foundation before you’re married. Some people believe that you must be perfect in order to be married, but you will still learn and make mistakes. But before marriage, I believe you need to be content with Christ first, because one should be careful not to make another person their all or idol. But it’s not just people. Are we looking for grades to fulfill our needs? How about traveling? Filling the void with running away from the problem? How about spending time with friends? Are we looking to them to solve our problems? There is nothing wrong with any of these things, but you need to check your motives. If you’re doing it because you’re single your heart is in the wrong place. You can do all those things when you’re married, but it’s a bit more difficult to create a foundation when you’ve already built the building. Do them just because. Get good grades because you want the best for yourself not just because you’re single. Travel because you want to see new places, not because you’re single. There are countless married couples that travel together, in fact more than single. Your singleness should not be your motive.
We need to learn to be all consumed with Christ, then singleness won’t even matter. Fill your voids and needs with Christ instead of temporary things. Don’t even bother calling yourself single if you’re really not, and if you are single, then act accordingly. I say this to help you. You only hurt yourself when you fill your needs with other things besides Christ, I can attest first.
Learn to be alone, and be okay. Learn to content with just Christ if that’s all you had left.
So on your to do list of things to accomplish when you’re single, just put;
Make Christ my all.
But I Deserve to be Loved...
It’s just quite unfair if you ask me. I have been faithful to Christ and he has not yet given me what I deserve. Love. The kind of love that I see in a couple’s picture on Instagram. The kind of love that I see when a guy dedicates his whole Facebook status to the love of his life. The kind of love when I see an older couple holding hands and staring into each other eyes. That love Jesus, is the kind of love I want.
On Valentines day, it’s so easy to count all the things we don’t have (that including a significant other) and hard to look at how blessed and loved we really are.
I’ve realized that most of the time the reason I’m sad is because I feel sorry for myself, self-pity they call it. Self-pity does a lot of things to you.
1. It gives an extreme view about how your “life is bad”. Quite too extreme if you ask me. Satan somehow places a magnifying glass on all the bad things in your life and it causes you to think about how bad your life must be.
2. It makes you want attention from others. When you start to feel sorry for yourself, it makes you want other people to feel sorry for you too. Why? Because
3. You start to get upset that people aren’t fulfilling these needs. For instance (perfect example for this day too), let me you show you how one might self-pity themselves about being single.
1. I’m single.
2. Oh my gosh, I’m single.
3. Everyone else is in a relationship but me.
4. People seem happier when they’re in a relationship
5. I must be unhappy
6. Not only am I single, but I’m unhappy (Reference to #1, extreme views)
7. I sit at home and watch Netflix and eat ice cream instead of going on dates, how pathetic.
8. No one wants to go on a date with me.
9. If I’m sad, maybe people will feel empathy for me and take me out. (#2, Seeking attention from others.)
10. If I hint to someone that I cry at night because I’m lonely, maybe they’ll come and try to make me feel better. (#3, Trying to feel that void of loneliness).
See what I mean? I’m pretty sure you don’t have a bad life, and what exactly defines bad life? God is so good to us in many ways, there is always something to be thankful for, one that being he loves us unconditionally.
God’s love is shown unconditionally in many ways.
1. His sacrifice.
Romans 5:7-8 says:
“Very rarely will anyone die for a righteous person, though for a good person someone might possibly dare to die. But God demonstrates his own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us.”
Christ’ love isn’t based on our actions. If it was I’m not sure how much he’d love me, or that he’d die for me for that matter. Let me put it in a much simpler way.
Have you ever been upset because someone was mean to you? Treated you wrongly? Hurt you? I’m sure you have. Didn’t you find it much harder to love that person after they did that to you? Even if you forgave them, your approach to them was much different. Maybe you don’t smile as much to them when you speak to them. Maybe you’ve begun to become standoffish. Well, guess what? We hurt God. We’re mean to him. We treat him wrong. We are the one’s sacrificing him on that cross. But yet, not only does he love us, but he loves us even more everytime we sin because he continues to give us things we don’t deserve.
Do you realize that we get upset about things we think we deserve, when in actuality we deserve death. “God why don’t I have a spouse yet????” When we don’t deserve a spouse at all, it’s a gift given by God to show his undeserving unconditional love for us. We don’t deserve his death on the cross for us, and we surely don’t deserve him taking the blame and covering all our sin for us. That’s where grace steps in.
2. His grace.
Romans 8:1-2 says:
“Therefore, there is now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus, because through Christ Jesus the law of the spirit of life set me free from the law of sin and death.”
Doesn’t that feel good to know? Our present and eternal life is not based upon our sinful nature. We are not condemned! Christ doesn’t hold things against us but instead extends grace. Not only grace but forgiveness.
3. His forgiveness
Micah 7:18-19 says:
There is no God like you.
You forgive those who are guilty of sin;
you don’t look at the sins of your people
who are left alive.
You will not stay angry forever,
because you enjoy being kind.
19 You will have mercy on us again;
you will conquer our sins.
You will throw away all our sins
into the deepest part of the sea.
Did you catch that? All your deepest sins are in the deepest parts of the sea. Gone. No more. Christ has forgiven. He enjoys being kind. He doesn’t stay angry. What an amazing God! Not only does he forgive, but he forgets.
Isaiah 43:25 says:
Wow! All forgotten! Isn’t that such a blessing! So undeserving right? He even forgets for his own sake. What good is it to him to die on the cross for you and remember every sin you’ve committed. So he can use it against you? Then there’d be no reason he died. He knows the sins you commit before you commit them, and yet he is still faithful to us!
4. His promises and faithfulness
“Enter his gates with thanksgiving and his courts with praise; give thanks to him and praise his name.5 For the LORD is good and his love endures forever; his faithfulness continues through all generations.”
We know his promises and faithfulness are true. How? Because you’re breathing right now. He has been faithful in allowing you to live. He has kept his promise by protecting you. If he can do that, I cannot wait to see what else is in store!
I want to stress something else in this verse. It says “enter his gates with thanksgiving and his courts with praise, give thanks to him and praise his name.” Do we give thanks or complain about what we don’t have yet? Humans will always want more after something has been given. If you get a boyfriend, you’ll want a husband. If you get a dog, you’ll then want a child. Have you not seen how much he loves you already by what he’s given you to this day?
I am so thankful for this air I’m breathing now. I am so thankful for a family that loves and cares for me. I am so thankful for the sisters in Christ God has placed in my life. I am healthy. I am young. When you’re giving thanks, you will soon find it hard to complain and be upset about what you don’t have. This is also how he expresses his love towards us.
When we want to show love towards someone, we give them a gift right? That’s why stores are flooding with Valentine’s day gifts. We want to express how we feel about that person. Well, that just what Christ does to us. He gives us Valentine’s day gifts everyday. He expresses his love towards us by showering us with people and things in our lives. Such blessings that no one can take away from you! And the greatest Valentine’s gift of all? He’s given us all of him. His blood sweat and tears, his life. I don’t know about you but I haven’t gotten a Valentine’s day gift from anyone on this earth quite like that…
See we don’t deserve love. It’s given. Undeserving. But learn to recognize who gives the best love of all.
What kind of Valentine gift’s has Christ given you? What are you thankful for and blessed by? How has he directly shown his love through these things he’s given?
Same Old, Same Old
Truth be told, I wasn’t going to write for my blog for quite a while. In writing a blog and my book at the same time, it was hard for me to keep track of things. But God placed on my heart to write today. I want to remind you of a couple things and gently encourage you to think about life.
Nothing entirely specific yet, just what comes to your mind when you think about life? Your life if I may add. What were the greatest times? When were you the most happiest? It could be when you were around a certain person, when you had a certain job, when you traveled somewhere, when you found Christ. Would you say you have that feeling right now? While you’re reading these words how do you feel? Things could be better right? Too much pain going on in your life to be happy? If only things were different? Well, why can’t they be? See I look around especially at my own life, and we complain but take no actions. Yet, if we do take actions, they are the same things we’ve been doing and have only given us the same results. No change. No difference in our lives. See it’s great to dream, to want, to desire. But what are we really doing to achieve change in our lives rather than just “talking” and “dreaming?” Take a look at your life again. You know what you should be doing to better your life. Why do you keep ignoring it? Why do you keep passing it by thinking your life will still change even though you ignore it.
For some of you it could be many things. It doesn’t matter how big or small it is, you change it, your whole life could be different. That could be saving money, or paying off debt. It could be cleaning that attic you know gives you a wiff of sadness every time you walk pass it. For some of you it could be ridding someone in your life you know is not good for you. For some it could be finally working on that attitude problem so many people say you have, it could be finally not living for other people and doing what makes you happy, could be finally trying at school and getting good grades.
My heart feels the same pain you do of things being the same. I wanted you to think about your happiest moments in life because I’d like to remind you that those feelings are not completely out of reach as it may seem. You may just need to make some changes to get to that point again! I long for people to be filled with the joy that God has promised them. But God cannot do his job if you’re not doing yours. You know that cliche saying “change doesn’t happen until you do?” Well, it’s true. Change the scenery around in your life. Get new friends and people in your life. Be with someone romantically that actually invests positively in your life. If you already have someone, do newfound things with them. If you don’t have anyone place yourself around positive people of the opposite gender. Clean up and change the room around and make it look different and new! Change up your grades and actually work hard to achieve straight A’s and see how much better you can enjoy your life without feeling bad about your grades! Pay off debt and feel the weight lifted off of you being bound to something! Save money and see how happier you become because you create self-discipline in yourself. Treat people better at work and see your change in attitude about going to work everyday.
Why do we think our lives must say the same? Sounds pretty boring and depressing if you ask me. I am only given but a short time on this earth. My death date is set. I want to spend my life doing things that matter and are important. I want to enjoy life and have those “happiest moments” everyday. That can’t happen without some change, and I have to be the one to take the initiative. So I pray that today you make that decision to have a life change. I pray that today you start to experience those “happiest moments” because you made a decision to not allow your life to be a certain way. I pray god gives you the strength and courage to make those changes and Satan doesn’t talk you back into staying the same and receiving the same results. Don’t allow fear to sike you out. What are you afraid of, getting better? Because you can’t fail with Jesus. Fear you won’t follow-through? Well now, that’s all up to you.
God, Am I Doing This Right?
I long so much to be blessed, that I even more desire to follow God’s perfect will. I think it’s safe to say that most people would most like to be blessed. But, I think I have an issue. Because I follow God’s will and long to be blessed by him, I question every thought and move I make. Don’t get me wrong, this can, in so many ways be a very positive and good thing. When you question your decisions you’re making sure what you’re deciding is wise and pleasing to God. But there may also be a couple problems with going about this.
I know some of the problems I have is looking to and reading every book there is out there at the Christian Book store, EXCEPT the most important one, the bible. I look to read books of people who have been through the situation, which is a good thing, but most of all my wisdom comes from the LORD, not other people. It’s important to remember while studying material and gaining wisdom is in fact important, it cannot make the decisions for you. Theres no “hey, I have a problem in my life, let’s look up the exact things I should do to fix this!” If you’ve found a book such as that let me know!
I also seek advice from everyone around me. While it’s good to seek wise counsel, but not everyone is called to give you advice and some may give you the wrong advice. It’s good to know what others might do in your place or have done, but your relationship with God is much different from theirs. There’s not really a “specific” way to do something. For instance If you’ve had feelings for someone you know isn’t good for you, you may be able to still be friends with that person, but someone else may have to cut the relationship completely. IT’S WHAT GOD’S LEADING YOU TO DO. Ultimately, he gets the final say in what you should do.
If you’re having trouble figuring out how to hear him over others, sit in complete silence with him. Converse with him. Read his word and try to really understand it. Figure out what he wants YOU to do and what’s best for YOUR life. I’m not saying that it’s not good to seek advice and counsel, but still, ultimately the decision is yours at the end of the day, and YOU have to live with that decision.
After failing miserably to try to find answers on my own, I started to seek God first for wise counsel. But then I begin to realize I was actually making things slightly worse. Everything I did, I questioned if that was apart of his will and if it wasn’t then would his will be messed up? Oh no, did I screw up my blessings! My life is going to be a complete disaster now!
After putting myself through all that worrying and stress, I realized I have to think for the moment. In that moment of confusion, God will lead me to do what he want’s me to do, and I will have complete PEACE about the decision I’ve made! I won’t wonder whether it was right or wrong, even if it’s something my flesh wouldn’t have agreed on. God knows what’s best!
I heard a story of a couple that really liked each other. They wanted to start courting and they both thought they were ready. The guy in the relationship loved being with this girl and he wanted to make the decision to court her. (If you don’t know what courting means, its a close relationship that sees marriage in the near future). The guys mentor told him that he didn’t think he thought it was a good idea. So the guy followed his mentors advice and broke up with the girl he had absolute peace about. After 3 ½ long miserable years without her he realized his mistake and wanted her back, but she was now engaged to someone else. Who knows, maybe that was God’s will that it happened that way? Or maybe if the guy had made the decision he had the most peace about, he would have been the one engaged about to marry the woman of his dreams?
Remember that in decision making you WILL make mistakes, but that doesn’t mean that that’s not apart of God’s perfect will either. But since God knows our heart and intentions, he will always bless! So maybe God’s been trying to show you something to do but you’ve been too focused on others telling you what to do and how to do it, that you’re missing out on what God might be trying to bless you with!
I pray you will have good discernment and make wise decisions. I pray instead of seeking answers from others you seek from God first, and I pray that the people in your life who give you counsel will be used by God so you can gain enough wisdom to make a peaceful decision!
The Christian Switch
My friend Gabrielle called me full details ready to tell me about her day! At her school she is in a pageant and they are required to have an intro, including; a quote they live by, what organizations they’re involved in, their major, etc. She chose to use 1 Corinthians 10:31, which says, ” So whether you eat or drink or whatever you do, do it all for the glory of God.” She was thanking me for helping her think of ideas and explaining how the rehearsal went earlier that day. She was explaining how she was a little surprised at how many of the girls who in fact weren’t even believers decided to use scripture to make themselves look better to the audience. I thought, “How terrible! You’re simply using God for your own selfish ways!” But then, God being God of course convicted me. He made me realize that I was no better than them and that I had done this once before myself. I had turned the “Christian Switch” on and off when I felt it was needed.
The Christian Switch is the switch people turn on when Christianity is convenient for them. When it makes them look better to other people. When something tragic happens in their life. When they see a cute Christian guy/girl. When they want to seem intelligent/mature. On Sunday Mornings. On Christian holidays like Easter and Christmas. When they want to feel better about themselves. I can’t even say I’m not guilty of one of these. Be Christian we need be, but then live the way I want to the rest of the time. This Christian life would be MUCH easier if it were this way, but unfortunately it’s not how it goes. Jesus explains the cost of being a disciple in Luke 14:26-27 and 33 saying, “If anyone comes to me and does not hate his father and mother, his wife and children, his brothers and sisters, yes even his own life, he cannot be my disciple. In the same way, any of you who does not give up everything, he cannot be my disciple.” Now, of course Jesus doesn’t literally mean hate your family and yourself in order to follow him, but he does mean that you must be willing to sacrifice anything to follow him, including the life that you want to live.
As convenient as it is to switch this Christian life on and off, that’s not an authentic relationship with Jesus Christ. Christ doesn’t do that to us when he’s tired of us living in sin, or when he’s hurt and frustrated when we ignore him. If you’re going be a Christian, BE a Christian! Have a real authentic relationship with Jesus Christ. That means that he’s apart of your whole life, and every decision that you make. That means you’ve realized, like me that its time to stop playing games with God, and you’re ready to actually live a life for him, not just when you need a quick fix to feel better, or on Easter Sundays. Stop the religion, and start the relationship. He’s been patiently waiting for you to live radically. If you really think about it, when we turn the lights off, it gets dark, we can’t see where we’re going. We’re scared and lost. We stumble and it only makes life more difficult being in the darkness. But when the lights are on, we can see what is being shown to us! We’re much happier because we won’t stumble or trip over things. You can finally walk the path needed and not be so afraid. This is quite how life is. When we switch God off in our lives, we may not even realize, but our life get’s darker. So, instead of flickering the lights, let it always show the “on” side of the switch, and let the light run the darkness away. And I hope next time you turn the switch on, it stays on for good!
Do you feel you use the Christian Switch?
Do you use God to make you look better when need be?
What are some things you think you can do to keep the “on” side of the switch showing?
Are you willing to give up everything to follow Jesus? If so, what are some things you’ve given up? If not yet, what are some things you need to give up in order to follow him properly?
Are you afraid of living radically?
*Feel free to write to me your answers and comments*
The Uneventful Life of a Christian
As I was sitting in Cru (Campus Crusades for Christ), I was listening to the guy speak about sharing your faith on campus and the people around you. He then said, with the biggest most jolly smile on his face, “You know why your life feels boring? Because it is! :)” I couldn’t stop laughing for some reason. Maybe because I knew it was true!! I’m BORED!! How could this be? I love Jesus. I go to church. I pray. I do everything I’m supposed to! Then I heard God say “Hah! Oh, Danyelle... That’s the problem… You’re going through the motions…” I’m convinced that God has a sense of humor, because I’m pretty sure he was laughing at me that I couldn’t understand why I was so bored with him. Hah! I’m pretty sure he was bored with ME. A relationship is supposed to be fun!! Filled with laughter and joy! How boring it is to just do the motions of life with someone and not play games with them, or tell jokes! Being a Christian is one of the most hardest things you’ll ever do. If it’s not difficult, then you’re probably not doing it right. But it’s also one of the most exciting things in your life!! If it’s not exciting, then, like me, you’re probably not doing it right either.
Being a Christian isn’t about just going through the motions. That’s called religion. Which is called rituals. This is a relationship. Your Christian life should be a drama novel. Full laughter, sadness, love, anger, happiness. If you’re going through a hard time and you feel pain, that’s apart of the eventful life of a Christian. If you’re so full of joy and you just want to tell the whole world about how Christ has changed your life, that’s apart of the eventful life. What good is it to be a Christian if nothing goes on your life?! How can you get stronger? Closer to God? Wiser? Better? Your answer: You WON’T! There are people being martyred for sharing their faith in other countries. There are people that don’t allow fear to stop them and accomplish their dreams and God’s will. There are people serving all around the world just because Christ called them to. But we think being a Christian is boring. Oh but it’s anything but! If you find life repetitive and with no purpose, check and see if you’re fulfilling it with the wrong things. If you find it with no action, maybe it’s because YOU aren’t taking action! So stop letting God have such a good time while you sit in the corner being a party pooper! Experience this EXCITING Christian Life full of so much wonderful drama! If you think God is boring, he thinks you are too, so LIGHTS, CAMERA, ACTION!
God, It's My Turn Now
The definition of Envy means “a feeling of discontented or resentful longing aroused by someone else's possessions, qualities, or luck.” Hmmm. If this made you twinge, it probably should have, because you’ve probably felt this way. I’ve heard it all before. When you or someone see’s a cute couple and says “awww, they’re so cute.” Then you wait for it…. It’s coming… That feeling of envy rushes over you like a wave and then you or someone else says it… “I want that.” Boom! There it is!
Or let me give a different scenario. A friend of yours at work just got a raise and you didn’t. You smile and say “Congratulations.” But what you really want to say is “that should be me!” and boom!!! There goes that wave of envy again! I often notice we will admit to a lot of sins but it’s very difficult to admit to envy. I think it’s safe to say our pride won’t let us. We seem to think “if only I had this then my life would be better.” As I turn my face to every picture I see of a couple. As I use my motivation to achieve my dreams by saying “I need to be better than them,” I ask myself, maybe it’s not my turn? God has different plans for each and everyone of us. Their timing is different. Some are meant to get married at 18, some are meant to at 70. Some are meant to have children at 21, some are meant to at 40. If it happens, it was meant. My turn is coming. When I get that promotion I’ve always wanted. When the love of my life get’s down on one knee. When I cry when I see my baby for the first time. I have to wait for my turn. God does not want to withhold things from us. His heart aches to bless us.
So when I see cute couples, I say to myself “It’s their turn, mine will come.” I smile and I’m happy with what God’s given them. When someone gets a promotion I say “It’s their turn, mine will come.” Again, I smile and I’m happy with what God’s given them. It’s not something that comes easy and fast, but once I’ve stopped wanting what other’s have and realized that that’s their timing that God’s set for them in their lives, patience comes a little more easier.