Tag Archive | Encouraging

I Am Still Here!

photo (2)  Today, November 2nd, is the two-year anniversary of Broken-2b-Restored.com!  I am grateful to all who have continued to read my posts and thankful for when you have shared them with others.  I appreciate every comment and every word of encouragement! I am thankful for all of the new followers of my blog! God blessed me to publish my first post two years ago on my birthday and I am praying for His continued inspiration as I move forward!  I am thankful to my Lord and Savior, because I know He has richly blessed my life.

Today, I am celebrating me and the 52 years He has given me! I am so glad He woke me up this morning!  Even with some hurts and disappointments I have had to endure, I am still joyful!  I still have a great expectancy as to where God is leading me!  Because of His love for me I am still here! Thank You, Jesus!

Psalm 18

I love you, Lord, my strength. The Lord is my rock, my fortress and my deliverer; my God is my rock, in whom I take refuge, my shield and the horn of my salvation, my stronghold.

Release (Let Go)

In the beginning of 2013, I wrote three words down in one of my journals.  They were Release, Restore and Rejoice!  Although I try to stay away from making New Year’s resolutions,  I guess I could consider these words as my resolutions for this year.  As we enter into the last few months of 2013, God has reminded me of these words in order for me to reflect on where I am now.  Today’s post is on the word Release and upcoming posts will tie in Restore and Rejoice!

“Release” means to escape from confinement or to be set free!  It also means to allow something to move or to flow freely.  Ask yourself this question, what or who are you holding on to that is not allowing you to move freely in your relationship with God?   What is restricting you from moving forward? Notice that I asked what are “you” holding on to!

Sometimes we find ourselves trapped  because we continue to hold on to what is familiar or what feels comfortable in our lives.   Our mindset is not to change because we feel everything is okay just as it is.   We hold on to crutches such as past hurts, failures, disappointments, and rejections.   Sometimes we think just because we messed up in the past that we can’t do any better or that we are not deserving of anything better. We, unfortunately, allow ourselves to think that just because we have failed  a few times in this life, that we will never get it right. Or we allow ourselves to think that just because it is comfortable or familiar to us, that we do not need a change.  So, what do we do?  We continue to do the same things and we continue to hold onto the past as if there is no hope for a better outcome or a better future.

God does not want us to hold on to past hurts and failures.  He does not want us to feel restricted or confined.   It is time to release and let go!  There are times we will not forgive ourselves even though God has already forgiven us!  It is time to forgive ourselves, forgive others and move on!  It is time to walk freely in the blessings God has for us! God wants us to lean and depend on Him. He wants us to draw closer to Him; to feel His love and feel His presence in our lives.  How can we do this if we continue to hold on to things that weigh us down or hold us back?  Jeremiah 29:11-13 says:

“For I know the thoughts and 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. Then you will call on me and come and pray to me, and I will listen to you.  You will seek me and find me when you seek me with your whole heart.”

God has a future filled with His promises just waiting for you.  Are you hindering yourself from receiving all of your blessings?  Are you holding onto some things you should have released a long time ago?  Release and turn them over to God. Psalm 55:22 says “Cast your cares on the Lord and he will sustain you; he will never let the righteous be shaken.” 

As we get ready to close out another year in just a few short months, think about what it is you need to release.  Spend time in prayer and meditate on God’s word.  Are there some  issues and fears that you don’t need to take over into another year with you?  Fears, doubts, hesitations and past failures will restrict you from moving forward.  It’s time to release and let go!

crutches

PRAYER

Dear Lord, grant me discernment and guide me as I let go of those things that are restricting me in my walk with You.  Set me free from things that I am holding on to that are preventing me from moving forward.   I am releasing the crutches of failure, hurt, negativity and disappointment.  I am leaning, depending and trusting on You. Lord, help me to forgive myself. Thank You, Lord, for Your grace and mercy in my life; thank You for forgiving me.  Today, I am releasing and letting go. I am moving forward!  In Jesus’ name, Amen!

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So if the Son sets you free, you will be free indeed! (John 8:36)

Where Did The Time Go?

Just a few months ago I was eagerly anticipating my youngest daughter’s graduation from high school.  When that day and that moment arrived,  my heart was filled with mixed emotions.  I was a proud mother to see her stand before her graduating class and deliver the commencement address; but I also knew it was time to let her go.  I kept asking God where did the time go?  It seems like You just gave her to me and now. . .

And now, here  we are already in September and she has completed 2 weeks in college.  Where did the time go? I now have two in college and one beginning  his Senior year in high school.   I have watched my three children grow from babies into young adults and I can’t help but to marvel as to how the time has flown by.

It seems like it was just yesterday when I was taking them to  daycare and kindergarten.  I must admit the thought of my children not being home every night has been tough at times.  Over the years I have gotten comfortable in knowing they were safe and secure in their rooms and close by if I needed to look in on them.  Now,  I’m watching my son go out in the evenings to hang out with his friends knowing that within less than a year he will also be on his way to college.  There is so much going on in the world these days, that it’s only natural you want to protect your loved ones at all times, especially your children.  You want to keep them close by as if nothing could happen to them at home, school,  church or in places we call familiar.

The Sunday afternoon I had to leave Cecily at a college 4 hours from home, I had my emotions in check (or at least I thought I did!) I was so busy running around trying to make sure she had everything she needed before we left, that I did not have much time to think about getting emotional.  Just two years before I had taken her sister to school and figured I know how this works now; I can handle it! I’m a big girl! I’ve got this all under control!

Well, I’m sure you can guess what happened. As soon as it came time to give our hugs goodbye, I realized this was it. This was the moment of letting go!   Where did the 18 years go?  When I saw Cecily hugging her brother and sister goodbye, the tears just started to flow.  I could not stop them!  As I hugged her and the tears continued to flow, I said another prayer over my child and her new journey in life.  I gave thanks to the Lord for blessing me with her.  I  told Him that I was trusting Him even more to keep watch over her.

 You see, I needed this reassurance for me more so than I needed it for Cecily. For the past 18 years I’ve known this day would come. I’ve known that my assignment was to raise Cecily as best I could and to encourage her to have her own relationship with God.  He tells us in Isaiah 55 (NIV)

“For my thoughts are not your thoughts,
neither are your ways my ways,”
declares the Lord.
“As the heavens are higher than the earth,
so are my ways higher than your ways
and my thoughts than your thoughts.
10 As the rain and the snow
come down from heaven,
and do not return to it
without watering the earth
and making it bud and flourish,
so that it yields seed for the sower and bread for the eater,
11 so is my word that goes out from my mouth:
It will not return to me empty,
but will accomplish what I desire
and achieve the purpose for which I sent it.

523

Cecily Elise Matthews, although I am marveling at how fast the time has flown by, I know you are in God’s hands and you will continue to flourish.  He has a greater purpose and plan for you and it will be fulfilled.  Because of this, I am ok with the letting go and allowing you to grow and prosper according to His divine will. You are a blessing to me and I am blessed because you call me mommy!

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The link below is a post I had the opportunity to write when my oldest daughter graduated from high school 2 years ago. The words “Take Courage” still resonate within me today.  Thanks, to my sister Change Agents, Renee and Roslyn! Love you both!

http://doubleportioninspiration.blogspot.com/2011/06/take-courage.html

He Knows All About Me!

13 For you created my inmost being;  you knit me together in my mother’s womb. (Psalm 139)

Psalm 139 is one of my favorite Psalms.   It clearly tells me that God knows all about me.  He knew me  even before my mother and father met.  When I really take time to think on that, I can’t help but to be in awe of how amazing my God is!  The scripture above  tells me that He knit me together in my mother’s womb.  The word knit means to unite, bond, fuse or even to mend.  To me, that means He took the time to consider how He wanted me to look physically; not just at birth but as I would grow older.  He  took the time to consider how He wanted me to sound when I would speak.  He knew what He wanted my smile to look like on my face.  He decided the shape of my eyes and what color they would be.  He took time to consider my height and how I would walk.  He took the time to make me just the way He wanted me to be!

Psalm 139 states He created my inmost being!  Not only did He knit me together in the physical, He also took the time to consider my behavior, my thoughts, my dreams and my desires!  He went so far as to put me together to know how I would deal with  a broken heart, neglect, abandonment and abuse.  Even before He allowed me to be birthed, God reached down into the depths of my soul and He created me!

He created me in such a fashion that I cannot hide from Him.  I cannot hide from His love even when it is hard for me to love myself.  I cannot hide from His grace and His mercy, even when I mess up along the way.  I cannot hide from His comfort, when the tears are streaming down my face.  I cannot hide from Him when I am angry or disappointed, because He is the One who is always there to give me peace.   He knows all about me!

14 I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made;  your works are wonderful,  I know that full well. (Psalm 139)

Dear Lord, I thank You for taking the time to create me the way You want me to be.  I know that I am still a work in progress, but you already know what the finished product of me will be. I am thankful that You were mindful of me and you have given me this life with all the joys and heartaches to make me stronger in You. I am thankful that you are always with me and that you know my thoughts even before I think them.  Father, I am thankful that I cannot hide from you because where would I be without you on my side!  Thank you Dear Lord, for letting me know that I am fearfully and wonderfully made!  You know this because You know all about me!  You created me to be your daughter! In Jesus, name I am forever grateful!

The Lord’s Special Day!

Don't give up

A couple of weeks ago I had the pleasure of going to dinner with a dear friend and her 8-year-old daughter, Layla.  Before our food came to the table, I asked Layla if she would say the blessing.  Without hesitation she gave me this big grin and asked us to bow our heads.  It was if she knew I was going to ask her to pray.   We bowed our heads and Layla proceeded to thank the Lord for His special day.  She said it was a great day and everything was good because it was His special day.  You could hear the joy in Layla’s voice telling God about His special day.  I can’t tell you how many times she said to the Lord that it was His special day but as you can see it was enough for me to write about it. ( And, yes, she did eventually bless the food!)

The Lord gives us a new day every morning when He so graciously wakes us up.  With each day, He gives us another chance to correct the wrongs we have done and seek forgiveness. Everyday, He gives us another chance to let our family and friends know that we love them.   He gives us another chance to spend time in His presence and to worship Him.  For the last couple of weeks, I have looked at each day differently.   I knew before that particular evening that I am not promised each new day, but something hit deep inside me when Layla kept saying it was the Lord’s special day.  It was not just another Monday.  It was not either of our birthdays.  The restaurant where we were dining was not at all spectacular.  But, as Layla so eloquently spoke it, it was the Lord’s special day!  We were blessed to be enjoying each other’s company.  We were blessed to be able to talk about the Lord. And most importantly, we were blessed because it was the Lord’s special day.

The Bible says

Genesis 1:5  And God called the light Day, and the darkness He called Night. And the evening and the morning were the first day.

Lamentations 2:22-23  It is of the Lord’s mercies that we are not consumed, because His compassions fail not.  They are new every morning; great is thy faithfulness.

Psalm 19:1-2 The heavens declare the glory of God; and the firmament sheweth His handiwork. Day unto day uttereth speech, and night unto night uttereth knowledge.

Genesis 2:1-3 Thus the heavens and the earth were finished, and all the host of them.  And on the seventh day God ended His work which He had made; and He rested on the seventh day from all his work which He made. And God blessed the seventh day, sanctified it: because that in it He had rested from all His work which God created and made.

Psalm 118:24  This is the day which the Lord hath made: we will rejoice and be glad in it.

The Lord blesses us with His special day every morning! We need to embrace each day with joy and gratefulness.  Mondays should be no different from Fridays simply because He creates each day.  I am thankful each day that He wakes me up no matter what comes my way.  Each day is His special day and He gives me another opportunity each time He wakes me up in the morning.

At the end of our meal, Layla, asked to pray again!  She still had more she wanted to speak to the Lord about His special day. This time she prayed for her parents, her grandparents and all of her friends, and she prayed for me.   It was obvious Layla had a good day and although it was about to come to an end, she was excited about the next day.  She was excited about the next day because she knew it was going to be the Lord’s special day!

Try Jesus!

  Do you ever give any thought to the fact that you are not promised tomorrow?

 Try Jesus!

 You don’t know the day or the hour when your time on this earth will cease to exist.

Try Jesus!

Accepting Jesus as your Lord and Saviour is the best decision you can make in this life.

 Try Jesus!

 When you  feel alone and think you have no one to talk to about your problems,

Try Jesus!

When someone you have loved breaks your heart and you feel you don’t know what love really  is,

Try Jesus!

When the doctor’s report gives you no hope of a complete healing,

Try Jesus!

When your friends turn their backs on you and your enemies are waiting for you to fall,

Try Jesus!

When your money runs out and there is no food on the table,

Try Jesus!

When your own negative thoughts and lack of confidence are tearing you down,

Try Jesus!

When you feel like you can’t go on any more,

Try Jesus!

When all else fails,

Try Jesus!

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John 4:6-7  Jesus answered, “I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.  If you really know me, you will know my Father as well . . .”

Father, in the name of Jesus, I am praying for someone who does not know You.  I am asking You to speak to their hearts and let them feel Your love.  I pray they will know You are a forgiving God and You will accept them just as they are right now.  I pray they understand that they don’t have to try to fix themselves up or do better before they can come to You and ask You to save them.  I pray they will trust You with their brokenness and allow You to give them strength and hope for better days ahead.  I pray they will realize Your love is unconditional and You are waiting for them with open arms.  In the mighty and wonderful name of Jesus, Amen and Amen, again!

Wouldn’t you rather put your hope in knowing that you are heaven bound?

Try Jesus!

Her “God Light” Was Shining!

In the same way, let your light shine before others, that they may see your good deeds and glorify your Father in heaven.  Matthew 5:16 NIV

On this past Wednesday, I spent the day with one of my closest friends, Valencia.  It was not a day where we went shopping or out to eat with our other girlfriends; it was a day where I was taking her to receive one of her chemo treatments.   Although she has had a few treatments since she was diagnosed with breast cancer, this was my first time taking her. Due to the treatments, she has already experienced the loss of her hair, changes in her appetite as well as a few other changes in her energy and sleeping habits.

Prior to arriving for the appointment,  we got caught in a heavy downpour of rain.  We used the complimentary valet parking so that we did not have to get soaked trying to get into the building.   As we entered the treatment center, I really did not know what to expect.  I did not know how many other patients would be there.   I did not know how they would be feeling on this rainy Wednesday.  All I can tell you is that when Valencia walked into the waiting room,  she was a ray of sunshine!  She greeted the nurses at the receptionist desk as if they were old friends.  As we took our seats in the waiting area, she was smiling and at times greeting some of the other patients there.  She didn’t know them and that did not matter to her at all.  She did not seem to be concerned that some of them were probably there for the same reason as she was and not feeling quite as cheerful as she was feeling.

You could just see and feel Valencia’s  “God light” shining all over the place. There may have been dark clouds and rain outside and there may have even been darkness and tears within the  spirit of some of  those in the waiting area and in the treatment room.   That was definitely not the case with Valencia!  She was not allowing any of that to get in her spirit or to depress her.

You see, Valencia knows she has the love of God on her side and she truly loves the LORD.  She has a husband who adores her and beautiful daughters who consider her the best mom this side of heaven!  She has loving family members that extend beyond her siblings.  She has a church family that knows her faith in God and where the pastor and our members are praying for her healing.  She has a community of people, young and not so young, who know her and respect her with love and admiration. Valencia, has a circle of girlfriends who would do anything to help her  as she goes through what is just another test in her life.  Valencia knows she is a blessed woman!

Valencia knows she is blessed because of all the love and support she has from her family and many friends.  She is also a blessed woman because of how she is blessing others, especially me.  I am thankful that her “God light” is always shining and that she is victorious even as she goes through her medical treatments and future surgery.

As I watched Valencia the other day, I told her I was going to write about her.  I did not ask for her permission. I just told her I was going to do it. She looked at me with a twinkle of surprise in her eyes and a smile on her face and asked, “really”? And then she immediately said “ok”!  God had placed this in me a few weeks ago to write about my friend, but I guess He needed me to be with her on Wednesday so that I could truly write of her awesome faith in Him.   Valencia does not mind sharing her story with others.   She knows that in this life there will be times of suffering.  She knows that God is a healer and is in control of her destiny.  She knows that Jesus suffered on the cross in order for us to be saved.  She feels if He can do that for us, then she can go through this test in her life and be a testimony to others.

Valencia is already a living testimony just in the way she is dealing with the treatment and the changes she is experiencing.   She does not spend her time worrying  about what she has to go through in order to be healed.  Valencia has her good moments and her not so good moments.  Each day she gives honor to God for His tender mercies in her life.

When we arrived back at her house,  as she got out of the car,  she told me thank you and she said ” I had a good time today”!  Wow! We spent the day at the treatment center, but we were able to talk and enjoy each other’s company.   Valencia thought that I was helping her because I took the time to get her to her appointment and back home.  What she did not know is that she was helping me!  She truly is an inspiration in my life.

Valencia, I had a good time, too! Continue to let your “God Light” shine and inspire others.   Love you much!

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Dear LORD, I thank you for those you have placed in my life to encourage and inspire me. I thank you for allowing me to see a strong faith in others and how it helps them stay connected to Your word and to Your presence.  I thank you for strengthening me every day and loving me as your own.  God, I thank you that Jesus suffered so that I might live in this earthly life now and be blessed with eternal life in heaven.  God, I thank for the healing that comes when we have to go through times of suffering and pain.   I thank you that even in those times you are restoring us not only for ourselves but also for others to see!  I thank you for the “God light”  and I thank you for Valencia.  In the mighty name of Jesus, Amen!

He touched her hand and the fever left her, and she began to wait on Him.  Matthew 8:15 NIV

Each of you should look not only to your own interests, but to the interests of others. Your attitudes should be the same as that of Christ Jesus. Philippians 2: 4-5 NIV

I can do everything through Him who gives me strength. Philippians 4:13 NIV