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Showing posts from September, 2019

Rotten Fruit

Today's verse of the day in the Bible app is Matthew 7:17-20. It says, "Likewise, every good tree bears good fruit, but a bad tree bears bad fruit. A good tree cannot bear bad fruit, and a bad tree cannot bear good fruit. Every tree that does not bear good fruit is cut down and thrown into the fire. Thus, by their fruit you will recognize them."

This isn't the only fruit metaphor in the Bible. Galatians 5:22-23 tells us that the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, goodness, kindness, gentleness and self-control, then we will exhibit those things in our lives.

When we take these two passages together, we can see that whatever is inside of you will be shown through your actions, words and behavior. So if the Holy Spirit lives inside of you, then you should bear the fruit of the spirit. Conversely, if you are not filled with the Spirit, you will be filled with the opposite. Think about the antonyms of the fruit of the spirit: apathy, despair, impatience,…

I am Not Enough

Go anywhere on social media, and you can find memes (pictures with words on them) of beautiful backdrops with the words "You are Enough" written in elegant fonts. There are songs and even Ted Talks hailing, "You are enough!" There are books about healing from heartbreak titled or subtitled, "You are Enough." Most of the books I've found titled this are Christian books. Taking it a step further, some memes even say, "For the right man, you will be enough."

The sentiment behind "You are enough" is that you are worthy; you are valuable; you are priceless; you are a treasure. These words of encouragement are meant to help strengthen those who are plagued with self-doubt, those who are struggling with emotional pain and those who lack an identity in Christ. It is imperative to our Christian walk that we remind ourselves of our worth and value every day. We are children of the Most High King, and we are loved beyond measure.

The fallacy…

Locusts: Why We Should Obey the Lord in Times of Devastation

Growing up Baptist, we were taught at a young age all about the plagues in Egypt. Bible characters cut out of felt were stuck on an easel as a visual aid in Sunday School. When we talked about the locusts, I always imagined disgusting bugs more like a cicada/flying cockroach hybrid. Especially since it was the eighth plague. The Egyptians had already suffered through blood, frogs, gnats, flies, boils and more, so locusts had to be horrid. When I found out that a locust was a grasshopper, I was quite disappointed, and then a little ashamed that I was an adult by the time I figured it out. I mean, in the realm of disgusting bugs, grasshoppers aren't high on the list. Doodlebugs, ladybugs, butterflies and fireflies are at the bottom of the list of disgusting bugs, and crickets and grasshoppers are right above all the cute bugs. Seriously, how much damage could a grasshopper do?

Then, I saw it for myself. Several years ago, we had a grasshopper infestation in our area. Those little s…

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Those Words

“This just isn’t going to work out.” The dreaded words. The end. It's over. In my years of dating experience, I’ve heard Those Words several times. I’ve also said Those Words a time or two. Whatever partner is on the receiving end of Those Words is undoubtedly disappointed, hurt and saddened, but it’s a harsh reality that many relationships don’t always work out.

The majority of dating relationships end prior to walking down the aisle. But once you say, "I do," you never expect to hear Those Words ever again. But too often, it happens anyway. Families are devastated, hearts are shattered, and covenants are broken.
When you realize a dating relationship isn’t working for you, that’s when you utter Those Words or some variation of them. The thing is, though, after you say “I do,” you no longer get to say Those Words when the going gets tough--even if you feel the relationship isn't working. Every relationship has its ups and downs, marriage more than any other. That’…

Because of Who I Am

Someone posted on Facebook the other day the following:
Why would you fight for someone who clearly doesn't want you? Please let them go. You are valuable, just not to them. I thought about it for a minute, because I indeed fought for my husband when he clearly didn't want me. I fought for our marriage, even when he had zero interest in making our marriage work. He had already checked out and told me point-blank that he just didn't want to work on our marriage, but yet I fought on my knees before the Lord.

Throughout the first few months of our separation, I prayed day-in and day-out. I beseeched the Lord to intercede. I rebuked Satan, and I prostrated myself before the Lord God Almighty. I went to therapy, and I watched sermons online. I listened to every Jimmy Evans podcast I could find. I journaled and devoured God's Word. I wrote my husband scriptures and prayers daily. I soon filled a 100-page journal front and back.

Shortly after he left in June, God told me tha…

Covert Red Flags: The Real Things You Should Be Looking Out For in Relationships

Your relationship with your spouse should be the closest human relationship you ever have. As we are dating, we are assessing whether or not that person could potentially fit into our inner circle. This causes us to be on high alert for red flags. Most red flags are obvious--lack of communication, anger issues, irresponsibility, controlling behavior, abuse, etc. A quick Google search will bring up list upon list of red flags we should look out for. Being rude to waitstaff, not making your relationship public, not caring about XYZ, stone walling, gaslighting, and more can all be found on most lists.

But what about the covert red flags? Those things that are less obvious. My first marriage taught me to look out for the overt red flags like the ones found in every advice column. My second marriage taught me to look out for covert red flags, ones that I never even realized were red flags until I could look back. The entire time we dated, I kept looking for the overt red flags, and there …