One Year Later…Many Changes

Well, it’s hard to believe that in just a couple hours the first day of a New Year will be ending…

Yet, even as this day winds down, this is a time to reflect and think about the past year – the ups and downs – and how you can improve yourself in the coming years as you reflect on changes.

There have been plenty of changes since this time last year…we were living in a big house in the area where we were most comfortable living.  Soon, we realized, that we had to move since we were living on one income and could no longer afford such a big home.  So we moved to a small apartment in the middle of a middle sized city.

Yet, we felt the urge to move even further away from home – after all, God does not want us to be too comfortable.  We had previously thought of Montana – but too cold (for hubby) and too far from home.  Then we wondered about Nevada yet it was too hot (for me) and even further from  home.  After prayer and urging from family, we decided to stay in Washington and so as you know, we moved to the Spokane area.  Still close to home, somewhat cold – especially now as I hope for a ton of snow – and not as hot as Nevada.

Furthermore, I was drifting – wondering what I should do with my life besides going to school, so after taking one class, I began to blog.  I love to write!  So this blogging allows me to write while staying focused on schoolwork.

Now, I have changed schools…yet even now, as I work on homework for the class that starts on Monday, my idea of who I am is changing as I did a study of my gifts.  Use to be administration, mercy, serve, and even creative writing.  Now it is an artisan (I love art and other artsy type people and their crafts), writing, music, prophecy and a missionary.  These last two are a surprise yet they are not since I love other cultures and I often see or hear things before they are spoken or occur – go ahead and call me weird on this!

In conclusion, now I must try and understand where and how God wants me to use these gifts especially since we are called to use our gifts for His purpose within a body of believers (1 Cor 12:1-11).  like more blogging – though I often try to find time to blog and want to quit at times – I feel called to continue blogging and thus I will continue.

Yet, even with the realization of these gifts, it will mean more changes as I reflect on my life and how I can improve my life for the better in order to seek God and build my relationship with Him, in order to love other people more, while desiring to serve Him, my husband, and others within the community.  After all, who knows what will have changed between now and this time next year…

So, what changes have happened in your life in this last year?  What changes do you want to see in the coming year?

Creative and Renewed Vision with the Heart of a Warrior

Well, as the end of one year approaches and another is about to start, I have been reflecting on my life especially as I spent the last few days going through photos and reading a book about Chazown, or God’s Vision for Your Life, for my next class.  This book is about taking your life’s experiences, gifts, and even values to determine your chosen path in life.

That is one thing that I struggle with as I ask – am I on the right path with my master degree?  In just 18 months, I will hopefully be graduating and hope to be in a ministry or even starting my own.  Though I feel God is calling me to be involved before He puts me into my own ministry…so involved I will be.

Yet, in the meantime, a few interesting things have happened in the last few days that have given me a sense of what I am called to do…almost like a renewed vision for my life.

First, as I examined the pictures, I came across a few cool ones including scenic photography and even my own paintings…I never really had the dream to paint yet as I study my art and even the photographs, I have a continued dream to use my gift of creativity for God’s glory.  Yet I wonder how will I make the time with husband’s care, school, and maybe a job, hopefully soon.  Yet, I must continue to trust God to work His Ways to help me fulfill this desire to use my creative gift of writing, artwork, and even love to create things with Legos.  Therefore, I hope to start a writing project that includes writing a devotional about God’s path in life so stay tuned…and pray that I can accomplish this dream.  Perhaps I even need to make time for my creative side before it goes away…

Second, I often wondered if I would ever fulfill a vision that was spoken over me years ago as I was commissioned as a leader at a local church.  It was about doing great and mighty things for God.  Yet, I’m shy and I don’t know if I can ever speak to a crowd of people to preach or even lead them to the Lord.  Then, yesterday, as I went forward to have my husband prayed for, an acquaintance – who I would to become friends with – prayed over me and she told me that she was given a Word about me.  It was almost similar to the vision as she reminded me to be a warrior and be bold as I would be reaching a great multitude of people!!!  I was like wow and all I could say was – thank you and that was the second time I have heard that message in my life!  Now, it is time to be bold and become that warrior for Christ.

Third, our pastor spoke about boldness and walking with God to fulfill His purpose in our lives.  That we need to wake up from our slumber and speak up in His Name and proclaim the Gospel.  that we need to grow in Christ and develop a lasting relationship with God as we continue to be bold.

Therefore, in conclusion, instead of a New Year’s Resolution, I will take one step at a time in this coming year to hopefully become a warrior in the Name of Jesus, standing up boldly for Him, praying for this nation, and bringing people into His Kingdom.  This includes building/rebuilding relationships with God, family and friends, spending more time with God and focusing on Him as I strive to serve Him more and become more obedient to His will.

What are your steps to becoming a better you in the coming year?  Is there a vision that you have put on hold or forgotten?  Is there something standing in your way?

Who am I? The Positive and Negative of Who I am

Several years ago, I earned a degree in Human Development, which is a study of how humans develop along with some counseling theories and psychology.  During the course of one class, we were asked to interview people and collect “Who am I” answers from them.

This exercise is a way of thinking of who you really are as a person.

You can create two lists – one with positive stuff and another with negative stuff.

Last night I created my own list and this is what it looks like on the positive side:

  1. I am a Wife who has a wonderful husband
  2. I am a daughter who struggles in her relationship with her parents
  3. I am a Christian who loves the Lord with all her heart
  4. I am a cat lover since I was a wee baby
  5. I am a student pursuing a master degree
  6. I am a mother (1 child)
  7. I am a worshiper of the highest King
  8. I am a princess of that highest King
  9. I am an aunt (11 x) and a great aunt (3 times) with one niece in heaven
  10. I am an analytical person who enjoys working with data
  11. I am creative with a gift in creative communication
  12. I am merciful at times and need to be more merciful at other times
  13. I am beautiful …inside
  14. I am faithful and loyal to those around me
  15. I am a writer of novels, blogs, and student papers
  16. I am a reader of Christian fiction and textbooks
  17. I am an artist who enjoys painting, drawing, and photography
  18. I am filled with hope that all things will work out in the end and there is a light at the end of the tunnel
  19. I am an awesome person who enjoys life
  20. I am a person with a heart for serving the community

These are the not so positive stuff about me:

  1. I tend to tell white lies at times and I’m ashamed of them – people want honesty and a real person.  I need the character change to be an effective evangelist.
  2. I have a fiery tongue that needs to be controlled.  After all, James 3:9 (MSG) reads “With our tongues we bless God our Father; with the same tongues we curse the very men and women he made in his image.”  Therefore, we need to control what we say to people.
  3. I need to be more grateful especially to all that God has done for me.  According to the book Choosing Gratitude by Nancy Leigh DeMoss (2009, 29) “gratitude is a lifestyle, a hard-fought, grace-infused, biblical lifestyle.”

Though there are a few other negative things in my life, I need to confront these negative issues and not let them rule my life.  I need to be on fire for God and try to flee from temptation and negative thoughts the best I can.

Finally, how can I do flee from and resist temptation especially since I can’t do it on my own?  I need to call upon the name of the Lord and allowing God to work through me as I continue to go to Him for the strength to fight this negativity.   I also need to repent of my sins or negativity and trying my best not to continue to be a negative person.

So, what does your “Who am I” list(s) reveal?