Reblog: Faith Doubters

Recently I heard a friend say to me that “God must truly hate him.”  I was taken aback by his statement and wondered why he would say something like that. Why did he believe that God had singled him out and decided that he hated him because he had to go through trials and tribulations?

Sometimes when we are in the midst of our storm, we can’t see the goodness of God’s grace because we keep trying to get out of the valley.  I explained to him that God doesn’t hate you and that if He did, I wouldn’t be here. Because as a child of God, I believe that he sometimes uses ordinary people like me to minister to those who may be down on their faith sometimes.  I told him he was being a faith doubter. Someone who has doubts that their faith in God is genuine.  I explained to him that what he needed was to develop an authentic relationship (as spoken by my wonderful Pastor) with God and understand that having faith doesn’t mean that you are immune to trials and tribulations.  Your faith will always be attacked and tested, but you can’t let that stop your praise.  Praise must continually be in your mouth when your faith is being tested.  I told him that our God is a God of second and third chances and that if he truly knew my story, he would know why I continually say thank you.  So, I surrounded him in love and prayer and lifted up his name in prayer.  I reminded him how awesome our God is.  Our God is great!

Sometimes when you doubt your faith, it helps to have a friend or friends that are praying for you to get through your storm so you will learn the lesson and know that God never gives you more than you can bear.  I’m thankful that I have had many folks do that for me and blessed that God allowed me to do that for someone else.  I found these great Do’s & Dont’s about getting through difficult times that I shared with him and I want to share with you when you are doubting your faith.  These are from one of my favorite websites, www.blackandmarriedwithkids.com.

Dos

Be Vigilant – don’t hide under a rock when life gets tough. This is the time to Courage UP; face it, and learn whatever you must to DO what’s necessary.

Be Wise -never stop learning and applying what you know. There’s a huge difference between awareness and application. The difference in how your circumstances turn out is hugely based on what you do, not what you know to do.

Be Set Apart – When you’re thinking like the herd it’s a good sign that you’re in deep doodoo. The herd takes the path of least resistance. You have to be willing to stand alone – to separate yourself from the chaos – from the company you keep to the noise in your head. You can’t think average or behave according to what’s expected by the herd.

Don’ts

Be not distracted – whatever has happened is to coexist with as much normalcy as you can muster. Whatever predominates your mind, reigns. Practice peace; it’s king.

Be not dismayed – after the initial hurt, even shock which you have to sit with in order to become present with your new reality, you must not lose faith in rebounding; resilience is built here. Courage UP: verbally reassure yourself that “this too shall pass” and “I can handle this” because it will and you can.

Be not discouraged – when it’s over don’t argue with the results. Accept them. That includes whatever your new reality is. The life ahead of you with your new conditions will draw you like a magnet if you’ll embrace it. There’s always a beautiful “life after”, regardless of the storm you’re currently facing.

Want to keep in touch? You can find me on social media at the following links: Twitter @mskeeinmd, Facebook page A Thomas Point of View and my Instagram page https://www.instagram.com/mskeeinmd/.

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Day 3: Seven Days of Thankfulness

I am thankful for trials. My trials and tribulations have shaped me into the woman that I am. I continually endure things that people have no idea about. I don’t put my business on social media. But, trust me if you knew the real story you could understand a mustard seed of the faith that I have. My faith is unwavering in the fact that I know that I am a child of God. He changed my life. He thought I was worth saving. He took this little girl that was so broken by men and situations and He cleaned me up – both inside and out. Man, I tell you that you need to taste and see the goodness of God.

Trials and people tried to break me, but I’m thankful for those things and people that didn’t break me. Chains were broken and I grew stronger. I’ve triumphed over those tribulations and I’m ready for what is to come.

Not Bound By My Background

You may not control all the events that happen to you, but you can decide not to be reduced by them. – Maya Angelou

 

I entitled my post today based off a sermon my pastor preached a few weeks ago entitled “But By the Grace of God I am what I am”. One of the points that he was making in his sermon was about not being bound by my background. He spoke about this in relation to Paul and how Paul is not the only one with a shady background. But, he said that the favor of God is significant in the life of the believer. The message had been resonating in my spirit for the last few weeks and I can’t seem to get it out. I guess that means I need to focus on it right?

So, I did. I started thinking about my past and how I’m not bound my background no matter who tries to hold me hostage to my past. Like Paul and I suppose many of you reading this now, I had to remember that I have God’s favor and he is not holding my past hostage and using it to destroy me in my future. That’s what I had to remember because I’ve been having a heck of a time “co-parenting” with my son’s father lately and I realized that one of the things he was doing was trying to bound me to my background.

Have you ever had someone try to use your past as a weapon against you in your future? By using your fears, insecurities, experiences and/or bad decisions in your face as fact of the person you are and who’ve you become? I have and you know what? I ain’t worried. I know that’s not grammatically correct, but in this instance I need you to understand where I’m coming from because it is about to get real.

No one is perfect. No one. Only one man was perfect and none of us have ever come close so we need to stop worrying about being perfect and just live our best lives. Seeking to do His will. The bible is full of situations in which Jesus used the undesirable to spread the word. He showed favor and these people realized it. I realize it.

You know when I realized it? When I had suffered abuse at the hands of man and all my walls were built up to protect my heart, God protected my spirit. The enemy didn’t win. Was my life rough? Yes. Am I better having lived and survived the experiences. Yes. Is God through with me? No.

I have often spoke of how we need to encourage ourselves in order to get through difficult situations where people are trying to persecute you. Sometimes that is all you can do is to pray, submit and give it to God. I won’t let those who don’t believe in God’s favor persecute me for my past. Because those persecutors are not perfect. They have a past like me and many times it is worse. The great thing I want you to remember is that your past is just that…your past.

You can’t erase it. You can’t forget it. You may have had no control over the events that happened in your past. But, you can choose not to relive it. Don’t be bound by your background. Know that you are blessed and highly favored.

thankful-and-blessed-chalkboard-printable

Broken And Wounded

I have to tell you that sometimes I don’t pray. Not that I don’t know how to pray. It’s not that. It’s that I am embarrassed because I hadn’t done it in so long. I hadn’t just had a conversation with God and meditated on His word. I was so busy being me and living life that I put God in the corner. I put the almighty in a box. – Journal entry

Sigh.

As I started writing my #wednesdaywisdom message, I re-read my journal post and realized that I was fumbling with my faith. That I was not praying like I should. Actually, I hadn’t prayed in almost a month when I wrote that journal entry. I was trying to handle my own stuff.

I bet I’m also not alone on this. I think we all get in the mindset that we can handle it on our own and that things are going well we don’t need to check-in with God because He can see us right? I became a fair weather Christian. Calling on Him only in my time of need. Making decisions without seeking God’s counsel.

You know what happened next right? Tragedy. I found myself in the worse pain of my life. My marriage had ended and I was brokenhearted and distraught at the pain I was going through. It was brutal. It was like a never-ending cycle of hell. I was so wounded by the words that were thrown around, the sides people I loved were taking and the inability to stop the noise in my head.

I was on my knees praying and crying for a peace that I felt like would never come. How could it? How could I get the peace I was praying for when I couldn’t stop the noise?

By submitting. I needed to submit. I needed to submit to the will of the situation and allow God to come in and do His will.

He did.

It was done.

I want to encourage you on this #wisdomwednesday with this message:

Psalm 147:3 (NRSV)

He heals the brokenhearted

and binds up their wounds.

No matter what you’re going through know that God heals the brokenhearted and will bind your wounds. Give it to God! Pray. Sometimes it will seem that you can’t hear God’s word because of the noise in your head and here’s how you can clear the noise:

Write a list of three things you’re thankful for on that day!

That’s it. It’s that simple. Make it a part of your daily prayer and meditation process. This writing your blessings and acknowledging His gratitude and grace over your life will help clear the noise out of your life. It will start to diminish the chaos in your mind and spirit. You are then able to see visually all that you have in spite of what you have going on in your spirit.

It is easy. It won’t happen overnight though. You have to keep with it. You know you “have to go through it to get to it” right? Peace will come. Your spirit will heal and your wounds will be bound. You will have a testimony once you’ve gone through the test. Just be patient my love.

Be blessed!

Year 2: Day 137 – A Gallon Of Tears

I needed to share this today. Incredible and encouraging, I love this.

Charlotte Cuevas

A gallon of tears cannot be traded in
for any promise that they served a purpose.
The scars that we bear are no guarantee
that necessary surgery ever took place.

He has not condemned us to suffer.

But my God is a father who permits his kids
to forge ahead any stubborn way we choose
and all my heartache, I know,
I have brought upon myself.

But my God is, more, a father who loves his kids,
who holds my hand through every dark night.
Every gallon of tears, he dries;
every scar I bear, he heals.

And what greater offering could I give
than to let my father set the path before me,
since the path that I had chosen only ever has brought me
heartache, tears, and scars?

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Run Your Race

My brothers and sisters, whenever you face trials of any kind, consider it nothing but joy, because you know that the testing of your faith produces endurance;

James 1:2-3 NRSV

Today’s post is a short one. I was really going through some things this weekend. Some good and some bad, but I was really wondering, “Why me?” I’m a good person. I’m nice. I’m courteous. I’m dependable. Why do I keep getting in these situations with folks that should know better but refuse to do better. Why do I keep getting frustrated by foolishness and distracted by dishonesty? You know, I was in a “Woe is me” type of mood.

So, this quote today from my daily devotionals was right on time. Why? Because I needed to be reminded that even when it seems like my back is against the wall that I will persevere and endure. Everyone is going through something right now. No one is immune to trials or tribulations. We all have that in common.

My ex and I had an acrimonious dispute this weekend that affected our ability to co-parent effectively. I endure things on my job or in my personal life, but I keep on keeping on. Pushing forward. Why? Because I have faith that I will see this situation through to the end and I will be victorious. My faith is being tested.

If you’re going through a trial, tribulation or a storm know that it is only temporary. You are destined for greatness and your steps have been ordered. I was reminded of that this weekend when I was talking to a friend of mine. He said that if you are a woman of faith, you know that your life has already been scripted. You are just walking through it trying to determine the path where God wants you to be.

Wow! Yep. It’s already written. So, I’m going to get my mind right and my tennis shoes on because I want to walk the path that HE tells me too. It’s not an easy path, but I know that the race I run is a marathon and not a sprint. I will endure. I will keep a positive attitude and I will share my motivational moments and testimonies to keep inspiring you to do the same.

Be blessed my loves!

Beywagon

Okay, so let me start off by saying that I truly love and respect Beyonce as an artist. She’s talented, beautiful and just an incredible representation of a woman with class. Now, I don’t think I’m part of the #beyhive or anything, but I am a fan. Not a diehard, I would spend my baby’s after care money to go see her in concert fan, but a fan who can watch and observe from the sidelines.

That being said…during my time of transition, I’ve gone through a metamorphisis and I realized that Beyonce has songs that really speak to where I’ve been, where I’m going and where I’m at. This is real here folks, I’m baring my soul so please don’t judge me.

Here are the four songs that speak to my life:

Crazy in Love

Believe it or not, I was crazy in love. I was his ride or die. I was the chick that always had his back until we had a child. I couldn’t seem to balance being his everything and being a mother. I went from being crazy in love to just being crazy in the end. But, in the beginning it was fire! Fire that burned out of control and caused an inferno.

 

I’m Scared of Lonely

Right after it ended and I was laying on the floor wanting to find peace in chaos it was this song that spoke to me. Beyonce sang “And I’m scared of being the only shadow along the wall and I’m scared hearing the only heartbeat I hear beating is my own and I’m scared being alone.” Yep, I was in it. Wallowing, self-pity, heartbreak and pain. Trying to breathe. Realizing that I am alone.

 

Love a Woman – (Okay Not All Bey, but fabulous nonetheless) Mary J Blige featuring Beyonce

But, after I got up off that floor realizing that it is going to be okay, I needed something to keep me motivated. It was this song that spoke life into me.  Mary sang “If you think you know how to love a woman, I feel there are some things you still need to know…”

Yep, I was there like “Sang it ladies”! (As she lifts her wine glass with tears in her eyes) Dang, I was going through it.

 

I Was Here

Now, isn’t that what it’s all about? Getting to the point of accepting your new reality? Realizing that what doesn’t kill you will make you stronger? Understanding that pain is a part of life and that you must go through some things to gain clarity on who you are as a person. Beyonce sang, “I was here. I lived, I loved. I was here.” No, there was no happy ending for me, but I loved. Truly. Completely. I’m a better person for my experiences. I’m stronger than I knew I could be.

 

So, there you have it folks. Sometimes you will go through situations where you see no way out and they are seemingly hopeless, volatile and unmanageable, but I tell you from experience…breathe and know that it will get better. The hardest and darkest days are seemingly while you are going through your storm, but there is always a light at the end of the tunnel. Get to the end of it because I promise it will get better.