Official Release Day!!!

Tea for Two: A 30 Day Devotional is now available for purchase! Just click the shop link or purchase your copy at Amazon today!

What Has You Tied Up?

Today at church my Pastor spoke on Palm Sunday and Jesus’ triumphal entry. He pointed out something in Mark 11:2 that resonated with me.

and He said to them, ‘Go into the village opposite you, and as soon as you have entered it you will find a colt tied, on which no one has sat. Loose it and bring it.

Mark 11:2 (NKJV)

My pastor pointed out that many of us are like that donkey. We have all these God given talents but we have yet to use them. We act as if we are tied up and can’t move. Some of us don’t even realize what our gifts are and how we are supposed to use them.

This truly ministered to me because I have been guilty of not using the gifts that God has given me. Four years ago God placed on my heart to write my very first book, Tea for Two. He gave me the concept and how to put it all together, but I let fear stop me. I had so many fears:

  • What if my book is rejected?
  • What if I can’t come up with the money to have my book published?
  • What if I barely sell any copies of my book?
  • What if I can’t find a graphic designer?
  • What if I fail?

Because I let these fears consume me, I dragged out writing Tea for Two for four whole years. I was stagnant for four years because of the many what ifs that floated through my mind. Those fears had me at a standstill. Those fears made me feel as if I couldn’t move forward. Those fears dictated my life. Those fears kept me from utilizing my gifts for His glory and to impact lives.

Esther 4:14 (NKJV),“…Yet who knows whether you have come to the kingdom for such a time as this?” Someone needs our specific gifts. Someone needs to hear our testimony. There are certain people that you can reach that I am not able to reach. There is a certain group of people that you are called to. God has a specific purpose for each of our lives. He has given us certain gifts to fulfill that very purpose.

What is holding you back from using your gifts? What has you tied up? Is it fear of rejection? Is it fear of not being good enough? Is if a fear of the unknown? Don’t let these fears hold you back. When I stopped letting fear consume me and I decided to complete my book, God moved greatly in my life. He blessed me with a free book cover design. He blessed me with my head shot to go with my biography free of charge. He blessed me with an affordable publisher. He has blessed me with opportunities to speak on radio shows so that I can share my book and my testimony with the world. And this is only the beginning. This was all because I started utilizing my gifts for His glory. I undid that rope that was holding me in place and took off running.

Stop letting fear, worry, doubt, or anything hold you back from walking out your God given purpose and from using your God given gifts. Remove that rope from around you and start moving forward. God will guide you every step of the way.

Your Thoughts Towards Others

feed-your-mind

Have you ever noticed that when someone close to you has hurt you and you think about what they said or did, you become even more angry? It’s like you’re reliving in your mind what they said or did and you feel the pain all over again…

I was reading my devotional, Jesus Lives by Sarah Young, this morning and it discussed living at peace with everyone. There was one thing Sarah Young said in this morning’s devotional that really ministered to me.

“To live at peace with everyone, you need to control not only what you say and do but also what you think…When you indulge in negative thinking about someone, your relationship with that person is damaged.”

I have always known that our thoughts influence us and various aspects of our lives tremendously, but I have never thought about it in terms of how it impacts our relationships. Philippians 4:8 tells us “Finally, brethren, whatever things are true, whatever things are noble, whatever things are just, whatever things are pure, whatever things are lovely, whatever things are of good report, if there is any virtue and if there is anything praiseworthy—meditate on these things.” Whenever I have applied this verse to my life, I have always thought of it when it comes to things such as, not thinking lustful thoughts or not doubting God when trusting Him for something. I have never thought about thinking “lovely” thoughts towards someone who made me mad. Of course I knew that I had to eventually forgive that person and move forward from that situation, but to think good thoughts towards that person after they hurt or offended me…that never crossed my mind. It never occurred to me that the more I thought about how I was wronged by that person, the more angry I became with them and the more that hurt grew in my heart.

2 Corinthians 10:5, “casting down arguments and every high thing that exalts itself against the knowledge of God, bringing every thought into captivity to the obedience of Christ”

This scripture is telling us to throw away and get rid of any and everything that contradicts God and to take hold of each and every thought and align those thoughts with God’s living Word, who is Christ. In Mark 12:31 Jesus gave us a new commandment, which is to love our neighbor as ourselves. In a sense, one aspect of loving others is thinking good thoughts towards them…even those who have hurt us. Even deeper than that is the fact that if we are truly going to align our thoughts with God’s Word, we have to think loving and kind thoughts towards everyone, especially those who are not so lovable because they have hurt us.

Thinking positive and kind thoughts towards those that have mistreated us is not just for the other person, but it’s for us too. Our thoughts can influence our emotions and attitude for better or worse. Proverbs 15:13 says that A glad heart makes a happy face; a broken heart crushes the spirit.” What we think influences our mood. So if we are thinking negatively about someone and what they did to us, we are not likely to be kind towards them. More than that, our attitude will suck all together, can cause division in other relationships, and cause us to not be so pleasant when interacting with others in general. We will have a stank attitude and act ugly towards everyone we encounter just because of some negative thoughts about one person. I can say that I have truly experienced this myself. Because I focused on how the person wronged me, I was very short with them, I was not in a good mood whenever I had to talk to them, and I felt so much anger towards them. That anger continued to grow the more I thought about the pain they caused me. This anger then seeped into my other relationships, stole my joy and peace, and made me a miserable person to be around. 

Instead of letting those negative thoughts towards someone continue, you should bring the situation before God. One of the most amazing things about God is that you can pour Your heart out to Him and He will not think differently of you afterwards. I mean you can be brutally honest with God about how you feel about that person who hurt you and He will love you just the same afterwards. In Psalms, David provides many examples of this. He poured out his heart to God. He told God how various people hurt him, how much anger he had towards them, and at times he asked God to strike them down. Despite all this, God called David a man after His own heart. When we pour out our hearts to God, He hears our cries and He alone turns the situation around. God is the only one that can show the person who hurt you what they did wrong and can soften their hearts towards you. Also, you can always confront the person who wronged you. A lot of times people don’t even realize that they have offended you, but if you bring it to their attention, you can make amends. Matthew 18:15, “If another believer sins against you, go privately and point out the offense. If the other person listens and confesses it, you have won that person back.” Don’t be afraid to go to that person and tell them how what they did hurt you, but make sure you pray about what to say and say it in a loving way. So instead of waiting for the person who hurt you to come to you to make things right, be the bigger person and go to them. But make sure that you aren’t thinking negatively about them because that will influence how you interact with the person.

If you have any prayer requests, you can email sweeetlybroken25@gmail.com

God bless!