Written by yoditkifle

4 Myths of Singleness

Moment of transparency: As I prepared to write this article, I found myself struggling with the question, “Am I qualified to write about being single now that I am married?”  I concluded that as one who has walked that walk, I am qualified. If anything, I feel like I have a greater understanding now that I am married with the benefit of 20/20 hindsight.

I never dedicated much time to writing about relationships or being single. I used to run away from that topic because I felt the space was over saturated by other writers. I also felt that there were other things to focus on besides my status as a single person. And quite honestly, I hated the term “single.” But, for this article, let’s agree to define a ‘single’ person as someone who is not married.

Since we are created for relationship & community (Gen. 2), it makes sense that the enemy would seek to confuse us regarding this area. I have witnessed how the battle between confusion and clarity in regards to relationship and singleness has a powerful influence on us all, for better or for worse. Of course, the enemy wants people to feel as if being single or being married is the sum of their existence. Of course, he wants us to misunderstand the seasons of our lives  so that we settle on leaning on our understanding and not God’s. Of course, he would embed seeds of misperception. The enemy has been up to the same old tricks since the garden.

And that’s what I want to focus on in this article: misperceptions & myths of  being single.

My main prayer is that, single or married, we would learn to dismantle misperceptions of every season so that we can approach wherever we find ourselves with His grace and in His way.

4 myths of singleness:

1)Desiring marriage means you are discontent as a single.

There are countless books and blogs encouraging singles to be content in their singleness; letting them know that marriage isn’t the “end goal” of life. This encouragement to contentment can sometimes lead singles to entertain the belief that their desire for marriage may mean “I am not content where I am.”  This couldn’t be farther from God’s truth.

It’s very easy to fall on the extremes of both sides: either making marriage an idol or singleness an idol.

In Genesis 2, God shows us His intention for His creation to be in relationship, in communion and in fellowship. He lays out the importance of His design for marriage. However, we see throughout Scripture that while marriage is designed by God, it isn’t the end goal of His creation.

Desiring marriage means, well simply, desiring marriage. It doesn’t have to mean that you aren’t content in the Lord. It doesn’t have to mean that you believe it will make you complete or it will solve your problems. Desiring marriage is good. It’s very good and it is of God. With all good things that we desire, we have to guard our hearts from making them an idol and from having them cause distrust in the Lord.

I encourage you, if you desire marriage, take the time to learn what it is you desire and why. It is important to prayerfully explore the meaning and purpose of godly marriage.  Then, embrace your God-given desire with a glad heart that is submitted to the Lord’s will. You should never be ashamed to admit you desire marriage while you are single. Know that it is possible to desire marriage and love the Lord with all of you heart, mind & soul (Mark 12:30).

2) I have to get myself together as a single before I get married.

A life fully surrendered to God acknowledges that our lives will be spent learning to reflect more and more of Jesus Christ through His sanctifying ways and His Word (Ephesians 4:22-24). It is important to understand that sanctification is a path, not a destination. This  means that you won’t arrive before marriage. In fact, you won’t arrive in or through marriage. You will only arrive on the day that you see Your Maker face to face. How glorious that will be!!

We’ve all, at one point or another ,said, “I’m working on getting myself together before getting married or before dating.” If you haven’t said it you’ve most likely heard it said. The sentiment, in and of itself, is not a bad one. There are certainly specific areas in our lives, that we may want to  better understand and surrender to the Lord before entering a relationship. Each person should seek counsel and guidance from the Lord as they consider areas for growth and the prerequisites for dating and marriage.

I simply want to let you know that I can see how that kind of reasoning (I have to get myself together…) can be an illusion used by the enemy  to delay a God thing. I thought I had to be ready for marriage by getting everything that I thought was wrong in me, right. And then I get married only to find out that those things I had worked on were still there to some degree. It took marriage and the dynamics experienced in marriage to reveal that to me. You see, the funny thing is that we all have a perception of ourselves that is disrupted in marriage. I learned quickly that it shows you more of the junk in you than you thought. But that’s good. It’s good because marriage is one of the greatest tools for making us more like Him.  

But that’s what makes marriage so beautiful to me! I see the work of the Lord in me, helping me die to myself and live to Him (Galatians 2:20). We will forever be surrendering our selfish ways to the Lord. We will forever be repenting and asking for healing. We will forever be on the path to becoming. Don’t feel like it has to be all together before you go into that season. Let that season come as the Lord leads; not as you perceive.

3)The longer you wait, the less likely it is that you will  meet that ‘someone’

Funny story: When I was 21, I made a bet with my cousin that I would be married by the time I was 25. It  made sense because I was in a relationship at the time. The bet was that if I did get married before 25, then my cousin would have to pay for my honeymoon. If I didn’t, then I would have to pay for hers. What happened you ask? Well…I’m saving up for her honeymoon (need to find a good Groupon discount lol).

When did I end up getting married? At the age of 30. Did that matter to God? No, not at all. Was it His perfect timing? Yes.

We live in a time where people are getting married at an older age than our parents or grandparents. I see how the enemy has made us believe that the older we get, the lesser the possibility of meeting someone. How foolish of us to think that God is confined by our sense of time.

I believe that God gives and honors the desire for marriage.  No matter how long the wait, my encouragement to you is to trust in the Lord with all of your heart and PLEASE don’t lean on your own understanding of time (Prov. 3:5-6). I’ve heard from women who desire children but haven’t gotten married yet. Their logic is that since their “biologic clock is ticking,” they should bypass marriage and have children before it gets too late for them. Those kinds of decisions are ones where we lean on our understanding and act from fear. And honestly, leaning  on our own understanding can take us out of God’s order and can cause both present and future harm.

4) Being single means you are waiting to be completed.

Being single does not mean you are waiting to be completed. You are complete in Christ.

Well-meaning Christians have made me feel as if my being single meant that I was eventually going to graduate to another level of life and Christianity when I got married. I’m sure someone reading this can attest. I know it wasn’t intentional, it was just the way the church talked about marriage and singlehood that made me feel that I wasn’t quite there yet.

Do we deal with different kinds of challenges in married life? Absolutely. Paul talks about the various responsibilities that are added in marriage in 1 Corinthians 7. But does it mean that we all of a sudden become a new creature or get a badge of merit when we get married? Absolutely not.

We are new creatures because of Christ, not marriage (2 Cor. 5:17).  Resting in the newness of Christ also means resting in total completeness in Him, regardless of the season or the circumstance. The more we live in that Truth, the more we can live whatever season we find ourselves in, freely and joyfully.

You want me to do what God????

“I don’t know.”

That’s the answer I have given to those who have asked me “what’s next?”

You see, back in January, the Lord showed me that my time in the state I lived in for 7 years—the place that God used to open my eyes even greater to His love for me; the place he rooted me to flourish in Him; the place where He reminded me that He has chosen me for such a time as this; the place where, in comfort, asked him to never move me, had come to an end.

But He had more plans for me than I could see and so when He laid in my heart that after my lease ended in NJ that I would be  moving, it wasn’t with a road map in front of me. It was with a “take this word for now and trust Me to reveal the rest.”

Can you imagine telling people that you are moving and had no answer when they asked “where?”

Yup. That was me from January to March 17th—with my lease ending April 30th.

Don’t you just love the way God works? He does. Lol.

Remember that thing called faith that He talks about in His word? You know the whole, “we walk by faith and by sight?” (2 Corin. 5:7)…

Yea—He wasn’t playing. It’s really a lifestyle. And that’s what I’ve learned in 2016. The opposite of faith isn’t doubt. It’s sight. Because everything I saw with my natural eyes didn’t quite reconcile with what I knew in the Spirit. I cried many tears because of the uncertainty. But even greater, I rejoiced in many ways because His presence never left me.

I will never forget the image He showed me and the words He spoke when He made it clear that this season was over in New Jersey:

I was praying one evening and He showed me a rag that had been rung until water could no longer come out of it. And He gently spoke and said:

“All that I wanted you to do in this season is done. You can stay if you so choose, but My grace will no longer be with you.”

My heart sunk. Those words—I never want to hear again. It put His fear in me because in that moment I realized, nothing I did in my time here was in my own strength, intellect, merit or desire. He is the one that changed my desire to stay 7 years ago when I had planned to move to Cali after 1 year in NJ. He is the one that opened the door for me to be in Johnson & Johnson and even when I wanted to leave 2 years ago, showed me it wasn’t time. It was Him who allowed me to grow and flourish in ministry.

It was HIM.

And I can’t and won’t do it without Him. So when He said, “my grace will no longer be with you,” tears fell. I need His grace. And so with a sober mind, I accepted His invitation to trust Him deeper.

The months following after that night in January weren’t the easiest. But boy did I grow. Boy did I pray. Boy did I rest in His word. And boy did He lead me. In the midst of having to stand firm in the conviction of what I knew versus what others didn’t understand, He stood with me. He gave me the grace to not back down. He held me in those weak moments and reminded me that I belonged to Him.

There is so much to the details of this story ( I will do a video to share) but in short, He revealed to me one week before I would go home for Easter to see my family (which I prayed that He would give me an answer by then so they can at least be in peace–He’s so faithful) that I would be moving back to Virginia to be with family and that I could work from home with JNJ. (only God! And that in itself is a story).

So it’s August—I’ve been home in VA since May. Much has taken place but here’s another part: The decision to move home was honored by my workplace when I made that decision. However, they had put stipulations around it and that is that it had to be short term. Like End of August. Like this month:-)

I have to be honest, when they first told me that, my heart sunk. I have been at JNJ for 7 years. So much took place here but deep down, I knew it was God’s doing–slowly weaning me from that place of comfort. Of course, working with this great company, they were willing to help me look for other positions within the company after moving to VA. I was honored. But I knew I had to take it to the Lord.

Well, 3 weeks into moving to VA, I heard the Lord say don’t look for any jobs with the company. You’re season is done.  I can’t explain the peace but it was tangible. And tears flooded my eyes on that drive home when I heard Him gently speak those words because I knew it was yet another invitation to trust Him. Deeper.

So what’s next you ask? Great question because He hasn’t made it fully clear but what I do know is He is the One writing my story. While the uncertainly of when my next check will come crosses my mind from time to time, the knowledge and certainty that He is SO with me stills my beating heart.

This is a new season y’all. A season where He is stripping me of everything and anything that I have my placed my security in to show me it’s all about HIM.

I’m excited. He is working things out behind the scenes. And He won’t reveal until it’s time. But it will always be time for me to seek Him. To sit before Him. To abide in Him. To learn Him. to Know Him. It’s always time.

So as I close out my next few days with JNJ, I do so with great peace that in this season of transition, God isn’t trying to catch up to this time, He’s in it. He’s before it and He’s leading me through it as I sing

“Jesus My Captain, my soul’s trust Lord, all my allegiance is rightfully Yours”

(the song of my heart this season) 


**** *There is so much more to this story so I will share it in a video to explain the details of God’s doing so you may be encouraged to know that HE IS WITH YOU!*****

Food for the Soul Monday: Because I can catch attitude in these moments…

*A little nourishment for your soul to get you going*

As you may know from experience, driving can make things come out in you that you thought you had put on the altar many altar calls ago! I’ve had to call on the Lord several times in my driving, you know, to have Him intervene.

The other day, I had quite an interesting experience that taught me a great lesson.

I was waiting at a red light on the far right lane. Now, most times you can make a right turn when there are no cars coming in the perpendicular lane- unless there is a sign that says ‘NO RIGHT TURN AT RED LIGHT.” I try to oblige depending on where I have to be at a certain time ;-) And that day, I was in no particular rush, so I obliged.

That is until the car behind me started honking at me and through the rear view window, I can see her get upset as she is gesturing that I make the turn. I’m starting to feel the attitude in me rise up as I try to signal to her that I can’t make the right turn because of the sign. Clearly she didn’t see it. And I’m doing that with all the attitude I could muster up.

She continues to honk. I continue to wait. And then at one point get her attention through my side mirror and say while signaling to look at the sign that I am trying to follow and she should be too!

And then she signals back that the sign was not for this lane that we were in, it was for the lane on the left of us. And when I looked closer, she was right.

She was right. I was wrong.

In that moment, every ounce of me wanted pride to have its way and stay in that lane until the light turned green or signal to her that she could go around me if she thought she was right. Because she was. I had misunderstood the sign and even caught attitude with it.

But the Holy Spirit softened me and when she showed me I was looking at the wrong sign, I signaled back showing her that I was wrong and reconfirmed if I can go and she nodded and so I made the turn.

I didn’t catch an attitude and I knew that the anger she felt with me dissipated.  As soon as I made the turn, she caught up to the side of me and I smiled and said thank you and she smiled and waved.

So here is the small yet giant life lesson I learned:

The decision to let go of pride in that moment and in any other moment dismantles the work of the enemy to provoke anger in others. 

The moment I decided to own the fact that I didn’t understand the sign and actually made the turn was the difference between the smile and wave as we drove by each other or the death stare that we would or could have given each other.

There are going to be many times in life where we will have to make the decision to let our pride take a back seat so we can dismantle the work of the enemy. The rise of anger. The rise of attitude. The rise of division. The rise of relationships being destroyed.  And if we do, the kingdom always advances. But if we don’t, we let the enemy throw a party.

I don’t want him to have fun.

Food for the Soul Monday: Let’s Get Serious…

*A little nourishment for your soul to get you going*

I’m fascinated by the relationship that God had with the Israelites in the Old Testament. It was anything but boring. It was adventurous…a constant reminder that God’s love for them was unrelenting. No matter how hard-headed they were, His heart never hardened towards them. It grieved but it wasn’t hardened.

What God desired more than anything was their seriousness about Him. It seemed like they took Him for granted. They no longer feared His presence. They no longer remembered His deliverance and they no longer understood His mercy. It all became too familiar to them.

But God’s love didn’t run dry. It grieved. But it didn’t run dry.

It’s the same with us. His love doesn’t run dry but it does grieve when He sees a heart torn between two worlds: the kingdom of light and the kingdom of darkness. He desires a serious commitment to Him.

God had His prophet Samuel share His heart to the Israelites in 1 Samuel 7:3:

If you are really serious about wanting to return to the LORD, get rid of your foreign gods and your images of Ashtoreth. Determine to obey only the LORD…”

No more dabbling in and out. He is looking for commitment, but not a forceful one, but one ravished by His love. Compelled by it. Restrained by it. Freed by it. A kind of commitment that honors and respects the work He is doing in your life. it’s real. It’s deep. It’s good!

I pray today that we would recommit to another level of seriousness with our relationship with God. He’s looking for serious people. All-in people. Unwavering people. Let it show in how you listen. In how you obey. In how you serve. In how you choose. Above all, in how you live.

“So if you’re serious about living this new resurrection life with Christ, act like it. Pursue the things over which Christ presides…” Colossians 3:1 (MSG)

Food for the Soul Monday: Don’t Be Like Me!

*A little nourishment for your soul to get you going*

Graduation season has come upon us and I can’t help but feel elated when I see my Facebook timeline filled with caps and gowns and diplomas! The genuine joy on the faces of those who spent years working diligently to get to this point is a blessing!

And for many, they now have the expectation to be rewarded for this diligence by attaining a job…as any of us would.

This takes me back to when I graduated undergrad and how the elation of graduation gradually wore off as I spent my summer applying for jobs. I applied. Applied again. Applied some more until fear and doubt started to take a comfortable seat within me. Why wasn’t anyone responding? Didn’t God know that I had gone to a good school, received great education and now it was time to work?

I started drifting into a place of what felt like depression. I felt hopeless and purposeless.

God forgot about me.

Or so I thought.

Little did I know at that point that behind the curtains, God was working away—orchestrating the timing of the story He had already written for me.  The story that would have the job I didn’t apply for, nor was even looking into be the one that found me. The story that would take me to another state where I knew no one and would have me rely on Him to show me why I was there. The story that after 7 years of seeing His purposes and plans really become higher and greater than what I could have ever imagined, I now trust in a way that I didn’t even know I could.

What am I saying? I’m saying don’t be like me. I’m saying that I have learned and seen Him work in a way that urges me to let others know…He really knows what He’s doing. Don’t let fear and doubt take residence. Trust in His ways. When the jobs you’re applying to don’t accept you, I promise, it will be OK. In fact, it is OK.

He is the one writing your story. The sooner you come to understand that, the freer you will be. You aren’t on man’s timeline. God’s timeline and His purposes will prevail for your life if you keep your gaze on Him. He will blow your mind!

May this verse be your mantra:

Many plans occupy the mind of a man,
but the Lord’s purposes will prevail.”(Prov. 19:21)

Peace, love and blessings,


Food for the Soul Monday: Because He had to…

*A little nourishment for your soul to get you going*

We’ve all said it at some point in our lives, “I was at the right place at the right time.”

To some it’s the philosophy that when preparation meets luck, good things happen. However, to us who believe in God, we know that neither preparation nor luck match God’s intentionality in ordering our steps. It’s beautifully seen in the story in John 4 that we are all familiar with, the Samaritan woman at the well.

At this point in His ministry, Jesus had been winning the hearts of people through the signs, miracles and wonders He gracefully performed. Many were getting baptized and coming to the knowledge of God and the religious leaders couldn’t stand it. So Jesus decides to leave where He was in Judea, and head to Galilee. And here is where things get interesting. The scripture says,

“He had to pass through Samaria.” (John 4: 4)

Here is the thing; Samaria was located halfway between the straight shot journey between Judea and Galilee. However, during that time, the enmity between the Jews and the Samaritans ran so deep, both spiritually and racially, that Jews who would travel between those two locations would intentionally go around Samaria because they wanted nothing to do with the people. This would add days to their trip but it was so deep that they thought to get near them would contaminate them.

But Jesus HAD to pass through there. In reality, by the cultural norms of that day, He wasn’t supposed to. It was looked down on. But He had to… He had to because before the foundations of the Earth, God had a plan for this lady whom we would come to call, The Samaritan woman. He knew she would be drawing water at the hottest time of the day because of shame. He knew she would have a thirst greater than Jesus’ question for a cup of water. He knew she would need living water that would quench her thirst for eternity. And so He risks His reputation to meet her. He knew the right time and He knew the right place.

No kind of preparation or luck would cause this woman to be at this place. In fact, it had nothing to do with what she did. It had everything to do with what Christ wanted to do for her life. He met her where she was. He wanted to rescue her. He knew that because of her testimony, many would come to believe Him. (John 4:30). What great love!

Be encouraged today that this Great and Sovereign King who loves us beyond our finite comprehension, holds our times in His hand. He loves timing but more so because He loves His purpose in and for you. That thing you are waiting for, He knows the right time and the right place and He will keep meeting you where you are until you are where you’ve prayed to be. There are people that have to be sent. There are circumstances that have to happen. There are places that you have to go. Simply Trust.


Food for the Soul Monday: He’s an ALL-IN God!

*A little nourishment for your soul to get you going*

I admire people who can consistently give 100% of themselves in everything they do- whether it be big tasks or small tasks, they are all in! I can’t say I do. In fact, I’m working on being 100% “there” whenever I’m doing something. My mind finds itself in so many other places except for where it’s supposed to be! Help me Jesus!

I’m just grateful that God doesn’t know how to be anything BUT ALL IN with us. He’s not into doing things half-way. He’s fully engaged. Fully present. And what He offers is never half-way. What He offers is in FULLNESS.

I think the worst place to be as a believer is half-way  accepting what God has done fully. It’s  a miserable place because I don’t believe it works like that. When God gives love, it’s an ALL-IN kind of love. But if we accept it half-way, it leaves us in agony–constantly trying to figure out if we have to earn it rather accepting the fullness of it.

When God offers forgiveness, it’s an ALL-IN kind of forgiveness. But if we accept it half-way, we are always in the place of running away from guilt.

When God offers freedom, it’s an ALL-IN kind of freedom. But if we accept it half-way, we are always in a place of bondage.

Here is what He tells us in His word in Ephesians 1: 7-8 MSG version: (Scripture of the week)

“Because of the sacrifice of the Messiah, His blood poured out on the altar of the Cross, we’re a FREE people. Free of penalties and punishments chalked up by all of our misdeeds. And not just barely free, either. ABUNDANTLY FREE!”

Wow! How many of us live in the barely free state because we “half-way” accepted all that God has done for us?

My prayer is that today, we will choose to accept it ALL! Leave no room to consider half-way. There is so much for us to do in this ALL-IN state!

Food for the Soul Monday: The Gospel

*A little nourishment for your soul to get you going*

Growth is an essential part of our life.  If we aren’t growing, we are stagnant. As I think about growing in this walk with God or what we would call maturing in Him, I think about what’s often neglected in this maturing process. We come to accept Christ as our Lord and Savior because we believe that He was sent by God to die for the atonement of our sins and resurrected to make us alive in Him. We know this to be the GOSPEL.

It’s the starting point of our walk with God but I’m learning that as we seek to mature, the Gospel must also be the sustaining force of our walk with Him.

What do I mean?

I mean that accepting what Jesus has done is not where it ends. The Gospel must also be what keeps us transforming to be more like Christ. The reminder of Christ dying for our sins is a reminder that we are, as Paul puts it, filthy as rags, and there will never be a day we don’t need Him. It’s also a reminder that our righteousness doesn’t and never will come from us. We don’t work to keep our place in God. It’s not an earned position. So we must be careful that we don’t fall into the trap of trying to work for His approval. It keeps us falling more in love with God because of the great lengths He went to reconcile us back to Him.

The Gospel must never get old or basic to us. It is POWER to us. It should be the filter through which we see and interact with people. It must be central and essential to how we live our lives daily. May we never forget.

10 Lessons I’ve learned in 2015….

Well…today is the last day of 2015! It’s gone by so quickly but the richness of my experiences are still marinating and doing their work in me. I’ve learned many things and some things I’ve always known were more solidified and became more real this year. God is all about growing us into His likeness. And every experience has the potential to do that. Here are 10 lessons I’ve learned that make me want to chase God even more:

Details matter:

The same God who orchestrated a census to be taken during the time of Mary’s pregnancy so that Joseph would have to travel over 100 miles with her to get to his hometown, Bethlehem, so he could be accounted for, while all along being in the very place that God had planned for Jesus to be born, (and oh by the way, Bethlehem was also the place where the Passover lambs are known to be prepared) shows me that God is a God of detail. **sorry for the run-on sentence but it was too good to break up lol***

He orders steps. Where you are. Where you are working. Who He has surrounding you—those are details that matter to God. We may not always understand why things happen the way they do, but they matter to the greater story He is writing. And we must recognize it as such; not some forgotten piece. Know that details matter to God. Let Him work it out! “The steps of the godly are directed by the Lord. He delights in every detail of their lives”! (Psalm 37:23 NLT)

God’s Voice is greater than people’s affirmation:

God speaks. The question is have we learned to recognize His voice. And when we have, what He says to us won’t always be affirmed by people around us. Even those we see as our spiritual mentors. No, sometimes, God wants to make sure we are relying on Him and not man. So when He says to do something and we’re looking for affirmation and we don’t get it so we choose not to do it, we’re disobeying. Trust God’s voice and move accordingly. He will confirm it the way He desires. “My sheep hear My voice, and I know them and they follow me” (John 10:27)

 Go to God with everything:

Did I say everything? Everything! The Holy Spirit directs and desires to put His touch on everything we aspire to do. I’ve learned to invite Him in my decisions. My conversations. My meetings. My writing…and the list goes on. I promise it makes a difference because you’ve chosen to commit it [whatever it is] to the Lord and what is committed to Him is safe.  “In everything you do, put God first, and he will direct you and crown your efforts with success.” (Proverbs 3:6)

It’s OK to draw away:

I’m known to be a social butterfly. Can’t deny I love people. I love being around people. I love being involved and engaged. BUT I’ve also learned that too much of people and not enough alone time does something to me. I had a hard time admitting it because, somehow, I thought I was not being authentic to know people knew of me or that people would think that I was being mean and all the irrational thoughts that could drive you up a wall! Drawing away is mandatory. Spending time by yourself, enjoying your own company is maturity. Engaging yourself is important. Listening to your thoughts and responding accordingly is also important. Allowing that time for God to speak without distractions. Filling you so you can pour back out is a necessity for the Kingdom. And I’m learning that I don’t have to apologize or give reason to why I want to be alone. I don’t have to feel guilty. So know yourself enough to know when you need to draw away from people and go to that secret place. It’s OK! “But Jesus often withdrew to lonely places and prayed.” (Luke 5:16)

 Think about what you talk about:

What we talk about is reflective of what we think about. Our conversations matter. Idle talk doesn’t please God. I’m not saying that joking and having fun is completely thrown out the window, but I’ve learned to pay attention to what I talk about consistently. Am I talking about things of substance? Things that build rather than destroy? I have to say, I’m grateful for the conversations I’ve had this past year. They challenged me. Edified me. And most importantly, they’ve helped me grow spiritually and mentally. “But avoid irreverent and empty chatter, which will only lead to more ungodliness” (2 Timothy 2:16)

Not everyone will understand you…it’s OK:

The beauty of being created by God is how unique He has made each of us. This uniqueness is also seen in our relationship with Him. Each of us, though experiencing the same salvation through Christ, has a unique and intimate relationship with Him. I’ve learned that not everyone will understand that relationship so they will have a hard time understanding you. It’s OK. Don’t be discouraged. Remain authentic to how He’s created you. How He speaks to you. How you respond to Him. Let the fruit you bear speak for you. “I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made; your works are wonderful, I know that full well.” (Psalm 139:14).

 Sin is real but His grace is power:

No we don’t keep on sinning because grace exists. We receive grace because sin exists. I’ve learned more and more this year that outside the grace of God, I am weak. Very weak. And I’ve found comfort in the vulnerability that Paul displayed when he said that when he wanted to do good, evil was right there with him. I’ve recognized that I am filthy as rags. And I am a fool to think that I am above sin. The conviction of the Holy Spirit should cause us run to the cross, not away from it. Only the enemy runs with us and even cheers us on when we run towards condemnation. But when we choose to run to the cross, he backs away. For it is there he knows he has no power. “Therefore, there is now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus” (Romans 8:1)


DON’T stay in “your lane”:

I’ve committed to live this life emptying myself of everything God has put within me. Because we serve a limitless God, that DNA is within us. The more I dig deep in the Lord, the more He draws out of me the gifts He’s placed in me and it doesn’t have to stay in a “lane” as we often hear. I sing. I dance. I write. I act. I play sports. I teach. I lead. I use what’s been given to me to glorify God ultimately and to serve people because I’m expressing the many facets of His creation. I’m not saying because I do those things, a ministry or an organization has to come out of it. Motives must always be in check!  I’m saying that you have the freedom to express it without feeling like you are outside of “your lane” (whatever that means).  “Each of you should use whatever gift you have received to serve others, as faithful stewards of God’s grace in its various forms.” (1 Peter 4:10)

Surrender your desires to Him:

Desires are not bad. And I learned this year that even the desires He puts in us must be surrendered to Him so that He could show us how and when and why. A great example is the journey of putting on WITHIN Ministry’s first retreat this year and what God taught me through that for which I will forever be grateful. Check out story here.

Don’t be afraid of the word Justice:

The tragedies that we’ve seen throughout this year on racism have truly been disheartening. And speaking up on those injustices doesn’t go against our faith.  Justice and God aren’t exclusive of one another.  In fact justice is part of our worship to the Lord. They go together. We don’t have to be afraid. God isn’t intimated by this conversation. He actually would love to give us the wisdom and the grace to bring light to this so that His work can be seen in greater measures through us. He wants to make sure our conversations and actions are motivated by His love because our responsibility is to make sure that our righteous indignation doesn’t morph into self-righteousness, which eventually turns into hateful actions.

These are serious times. While the enemy wreaks havoc in this world, we as believers can’t sit back and be OK with it. If there was ever a time that we need God’s presence in our individual lives AND our churches, it’s now. We have to increase our capacity to receive God’s love so that we don’t grow cold and bitter. We have to increase our sensitivity to the Spirit of God so that can fight this battle that isn’t against flesh and blood but against principalities and dark forces. He’s given us the weapons. We just have to know how to use them.  “Learn to do right. Seek justice, encourage the oppressed. Defend the cause of the fatherless, plead the case of the widow” (Isaiah 1:17)



Food for the Soul Monday: Unforced Rhythms of Grace

*A little nourishment for your soul to get you goin’*

The year is winding down.  (17 more days to be exact;-)

If we took the time at this moment to reflect on this past year, I am sure all of us can think of good moments. Bad moments. Achievements. Failures. Lessons. And so much more that, once again, confirms that this life is truly a journey.

It’s normal to anticipate a fresh start when January 1st arrives, but there is a passage that tells me that a fresh start is never confined to time; rather, it’s confined to choice. It’s never the wrong time to choose a new mindset or a new habit or a new trajectory. It’s never the wrong time to accept what God continues to offer. And He says this to us:

“Are you tired? Worn out? Burned out on religion? Come to me. Get away with me and you’ll recover your life. I’ll show you how to take a real rest. Walk with me and work with me—watch how I do it. Learn the unforced rhythms of grace. I won’t lay anything heavy or ill-fitting on you. Keep company with me and you’ll learn to live freely and lightly” (Matthew 11:28-30 MSG)

Truth is we get tired. We burn out, but God doesn’t. He only knows how to meet the needs of our weariness. Choose today to apply this promise to your life. I love how He says that we will “Learn the Unforced rhythms of Grace.”

We get consumed by the timelines we set for ourselves. We get overwhelmed by the pressures of society. We get discouraged by the failures of our efforts.

And at times, we revert to striving in the flesh what has been completed for us by the Spirit of God.

But this walk is meant to be led by unforced, uncontrived rhythms of His grace. It’s not meant to drain. It’s meant to uplift. Fortify. Cultivate. Flourish. Revive. It’s mean to give LIFE!

I pray you rest upon His word and come away with Him. Let me help you rediscover what you thought you lost. Let Him remove the burdens you’re carrying so that He can show you what it feels to live freely and lightly. And the best part is that you don’t have to wait til January 1stToday is the day.

Peace, love and blessings,