For years I have never attended Tuesday morning bible study because I was working with Ralph Lauren. So I was drawn to amazing women on Wednesday evenings, my kids would go to Awana’s and I would attend bible study.
Fast forward to now, my sweet friend Sonya sent me the book study called Armor of God in December. At the time I was not emotionally ready to even open the book. Through conversations with another dear friend JayKimberly Hartwell, mentioned that I should join Mom’s and Beyond in January to do a study called Armor of God with Pricilla Shirer. (which I already owned the book) However, I was not emotionally ready to be with other women-sharing my heart, crying more or to be vulnerable with others. Kimberly, shared that my mentor mom would be Gayle Perkins Shaum (Gayle and I have been friends since 1999 .. my very first bible study was with her and Louise. Gayle’s husband and I were on a pastor search committee and he helped me walk through a tough situation involving a babysitter we hired to care for our children who went off the deep end with us. Then Gayle popped back in my life a little over a year ago and interceded by praying for Isabella to get accepted into her new High school. And now, Gayle is back in my life dealing with another crisis with our family as my mentor mom!)
Seriously Lord, you have such a sense of humor with all the different women you have placed, just at the right time when I needed them most, in my life to be used to Glorify your plan and your purpose for my life. I am still BLOWN away by your GRACE and LOVE!!
So, today we finished the book study (which i still have plenty of blank pages that need to be filled in with answers). And, these women, that I did not want share with, the pain I am going through embraced me with Love and more GRACE then I deserve.
In this study…short version!! The enemy is real, the devil is real, and he is out to destroy my marriage, my parenting skills, my three IPCs, my family, our finances, my passions and my life! With that battle being alive and living among us, how can I survive?
One answer, JESUS, our heavenly father, and a whole bunch of resources, amazing people and tools to show me that we, as Christians can stand up with our swords and FIGHT BACK WITH OUR ARMOR OF GOD.
And for ME, what has finally clicked is that through the struggles and difficult times I have believed so many lies from the enemy that has given me doubt, shame, guilt, fear and a lack of self confidence in many roles of my life. AND, with God’s wisdom he provided ladies in my small group, but especially Gayle, to STOP ME IN MY OWN WORDS as I was sharing, that it was a LIE I was believing right then.
WOW…that hit me hard but also gave me FREEDOM and Release in my heart that the enemy could no longer control. When you have scripture that backs up with TRUTH, then the enemy can not control those thoughts over us.
Lie- I will always feel this way.
Truth- I am confident that the good work that God has begun in me will be perfected.
“being confident of this, that he who began a good work in you will carry it on to completion until the day of Christ Jesus.
Lie- I am undesirable.
Truth- I am the sweet fragrance of Christ to God.
2 Corinthians 2:15
“For we are to God the pleasing aroma of Christ among those who are being saved and those who are perishing.”
We have options to change and retrain our thinking that lines up with the truth of JESUS. Your pattern of thinking can be changed which in return can allow you to LIVE more abundantly with love, forgiveness, grace, honor, respect, compassion, and more love.
(speaking to the choir…I must change my own pattern of thinking in order to restore my marriage, heal my heart and parent my children.)
Bottom line of my sharing this story with you my friends. God places people in our lives for a plan and purpose. I pray that you are open to hear the truth from God and a few of those people that are walking along side of you in difficult times and the times that you are celebrating and singing praises to his ears. (I am thankful for every woman that God has used to minister, inspire, instruct, and encourage me. (even the moments that hurt but needed to be said with Love).
Be mindful of your thoughts and do not let the enemy get a strong hold on your weaknesses. Stand firm in knowing who you are in Christ, if you are a believer of Jesus as your personal salvation. We will have eternity in heaven forever.
One of my many quotes from this study. #ArmorOfGodStudy
What the brain is to the body, the MIND is to the SOUL.
There is Hope … #mindbodyandsoul