Why Your Dream is Important!

@jenniferkostick

Every time I stand in front of the ocean, I’m more aware of just how powerful God is and how nothing He created was, or is, accidental. We’ve all been given a gift of purpose. Every life has meaning and there’s a specific plan envisioned for each one.

Without a vision the people perish. (See Proverbs 29:18)

Just like God has a vision for our lives, we must have a vision as well. We must be active and obedient in taking steps toward God-inspired dreams. We can’t give up or look back regardless of how difficult the road ahead looks. We have to stand strong, and for inside the moments when it seems impossible, we need to remember nothing is impossible with Jesus. When we can’t, He always can.

And, friend, I’ve had days when I didn’t think I could. I’ve had seasons of feeling He was far, and I was searching to find Him. Believe it or not, those are the times we are actually drawing nearer and nearer to our dreams becoming realities. Those are the moments when our vision aligns with His will, pulling us into our purpose one step at a time. With obedience comes blessing.

Sure, it’s easy to obey when everything looks lovely and the sun is shining on the golden sand beach right next to His powerful waters. But I’m talking about obeying through sandstorms and finding our way through pelting waves. Here’s the thing: the closer you stick to the truth of Christ, the closer He is, even if you don’t feel Him there.

I think we can all agree that the world has gone crazy and those of us who have escaped it thus far are praising Jesus everyday for the blessings He’s given. What I’m suggesting is this: That we thank Him for the blessings which lie ahead, even if we’ve not walked inside the reality of them as of yet. I’m suggesting we throw up our hands in praise rather than fists ready to fight the God who seems too far. I’m suggesting our lives become lights of praise and thanksgiving in the middle of dark, dark places.

Your dream has the power to change lives! (Tweet that)

Let us search ourselves, find our vision, and run toward the will of God. He is big and nothing is impossible for Him. (See Luke 1:37)

Love,

Jennifer

Do NOT Lose Heart

Therefore, we do not lose heart. Even though our outward man is perishing, yet the inward man is being renewed day by day.-2 Corinthians 4_16

Therefore, we do not lose heart. Even though our outward man is perishing, yet the inward man is being renewed day by day.

-2 Corinthians 4:16

“Therefore, we do not lose heart.” The apostle Paul was a very matter-of-fact kind of guy and when it came to faith in Christ, there was no arguing anything the Holy Spirit guided Him to write. “We do not lose heart.” Translation: there’s no other option but to march full steam ahead in faith.

In the middle of life’s upheaval, that command isn’t easy to follow. This is why so much of our faith in Christ must be rooted in discipline. After all, the word disciple comes from the word discipline. We must discipline ourselves to follow Christ. So, how do we not lose heart? How is it possible to live victorious in the middle of trials and tribulations? It’s a faith journey, friend, and we are all on one.

Faith comes by hearing the word of God. (See Romans 10:17) Hearing, and hearing, and hearing some more! Over and over again we must discipline ourselves in the word of God that we might gain faith by connecting to His message on the pages. (As a side note, I believe in reading the Bible out loud whenever possible. It helps!)

Whatever it is you’re facing today, it’s part of your faith journey and the story of that journey is being written each day as you take steps in confidence that God is big enough, strong enough, and capable enough. He is enough.

Listen, I know it seems ridiculous that my answer to your trouble would be to hear the word  of God and actively pursue a faith journey. But I have no regrets in saying it. As absurd as it sounds, we have no other choice. There is no other road or way that will lead us to peace. There is no other form of healing or help. Where does my help come from? My help comes from the Lord, Maker of heaven and earth.

I love the way it’s phrased in the King James Bible:

My Help cometh from the Lord, which made heaven and earth.

-Psalm 121:2

There’s no doubt about it, right? My help cometh! It’s coming!

Think about this: What if we all allowed our tragedy to fuel our trajectory, leading us to deeper faith and complete peace regardless of the circumstances?

Therefore, we do NOT lose heart.

Love,

Jennifer

When Compassion Hurts…

When Compassion Hurts...

Lately, I’ve been asking God for deeper insight, greater strength, and the ability to show compassion on a level I haven’t yet experienced. I want my faith to be fresh, not dusty or full of what’s expected and natural. I want the unexpected supernatural.

Hope and life seem to develop from ashes. Our greatest strength is stirred inside deep waters of weakness. This is how we know grace truly lives and covers all.

Not long ago, I learned that compassion is a strong emotion requiring action. That means you have no choice but to do something. When compassion takes over, there’s no more sitting idle. You do what you have to do regardless of whether you’re sure of the outcome or not. In scripture, when Jesus feels compassion He’s moved to action. He heals, He prays, He does whatever is required of Him.

Based on the scriptural view of compassion, I can honestly say it’s a foreign emotion for many of us. We often experience sadness based on our own experiences, or from pain others are suffering, and we can all identify with what anger feels like. But can you pinpoint the last time you were moved to act righteously based on the feeling of compassion? I have to wonder how often we allow our deep waters of weakness to be stirred by this seemingly foreign emotion? And, how often does strength prevail because of it?

I recently felt compassion.

Based on my own experience, the action forced from compassion did not feel good. I didn’t feel rewarded after doing the right thing; I had no resolve or letting go of pain. If anything, I felt deeper pain. However, I want to please God, and I have deep faith that what we do solely for Him will add strength and peace to each new day. The words in 1 Samuel 15:22 come to mind, “Behold, to obey is better than sacrifice.” (Before the cross, sacrificing animals was the atonement for sin, however, if one obeyed in the first place, there was no need for the sacrifice because there was no sin for which to atone.)

He’s a good God full of righteousness, peace, and plans for each life. I don’t know why He allows us to pour love into certain people only to end up hurt. I don’t know why some suffer so deeply that they lash out and turn from those who have loved them. I have know idea why compassion sometimes hurts us to the core. I only know I must fight for obedience to live alongside pain. I must allow both obedience and pain to walk hand-in-hand so that when something hurts, God can work. Pain doesn’t have to fester and bring forth bitterness; it can work with obedience to bring forth beauty. It’s a choice, friend.

When it comes to compassion, He requires different actions from different people. It depends on the situation. Mine is obviously close to the heart and comes from a fractured relationship. It’s a heart matter and we all know matters of the heart hurt most. I don’t know what’s going on inside your life or what might be cutting at your heart. I’m not sure what action God will require of you once you feel the strong emotion of compassion,  but let me encourage you with this: compassion is a wonderful, productive emotion. Don’t run scared of it. When you feel it, you will have no other choice but to move. It means you’ve chosen obedience. It is possible for obedience and pain to coexist in a healthy manner. And when they do, grace flows down.

I wish every situation/relationship wrapped up perfectly with a storybook ending. I wish unity was a priority for everyone. And, Dear God, I wish people made better decisions, including me. But here’s the thing: After all the tears are shed, when we allow pain and obedience to work together, we have a redeemed ending. We were made for holy redemption by which the covering of grace pours so thick the will of God takes over and breathes life. We must believe that in the hardest most hurtful moments, God is moving with compassion on us, and so we must move with compassion for others.

Finally, all of you be of one mind, having compassion for one another; love as brothers, be tenderhearted, be courteous;not returning evil for evil or reviling for reviling, but on the contrary blessing, knowing that you were called to this, that you may inherit a blessing…

-1 Peter 3:8-9

Love,

Jennifer

Why You Need to Make Praise Your Purpose…

_Let my mouth be filled with Your praise and with Your glory all the day._-Psalm 71_8

“Let my mouth be filled with Your praise and with Your glory all the day.”

-Psalm 71:8

This entire Psalm is written from the perspective of an older person having already left the days of his youth. The particular plea we read in verse 8 gives us a great example of prayer that should never leave our lips regardless of age.

How often do we exhibit praise and glory to God in the midst of tiring and trying circumstances? How often do we show the love of Jesus in a traffic Jam, or when we’re angry with the next door neighbor? How often do we allow our mouths to be empty of praise and glory unto Him? If I’m going to be honest, I have to say I can easily forget. I often let the sin of my heart, and the tug-of-war between my flesh and the Spirit of God who dwells inside, to battle more often than needed.

We can’t control everything in life, nor should we try, but there are many choices we can make that might kill our pride, but in the end, sooth our spirits in the form of grace.  And by the way, choosing to kill our pride is needed in order to massacre the sins of our flesh looking to consume us. Humility is the key to grace.

James tells us that God gives grace to the humble. More grace! (See James 4:6)

I’m in need of grace every single day of my life. My prayer is that I will become much better at choosing, even in the midst of life’s difficulties, that my mouth be filled with praise and with the glory of God.

We all face circumstances, some major; some minor, that should cause us to look at Psalm 71:8 with new eyes. Putting death to pride and breathing life to humility isn’t easy, but freeing. It’s a challenging request from our heavenly Father reminding us He is for us, not against us.

May each of us allow our mouth to be filled with praise and glory. May we keep in mind that pride is a killer and humility is grace in the form of CPR meant to give us each, not just eternal life, our best life right now. Your circumstances might be hopeless, but the good news is you serve the God of hope! When we fill our mouths with praise, it’s like administering medicine which opens our eyes to His gift of grace surrounding us every moment.

Bottom line: Every negative circumstance shows glimmers of positivity and hope when we praise the Almighty.

Make praise your purpose!

Love,

Jennifer

The Question You Need to Ask God When Dealing with Anxiety…

The Question You Need to Ask God When Dealing with Anxiety

I’m not always certain what triggers anxiety in me. It’s usually the little things rather than the big things. It can come from a noise too loud or a light too bright. Regardless, it comes. Like a fast train headed down the tracks, it has full intent of taking me on a journey. My heart beats fast while my thoughts focus on nothing else but the feeling of a war waged deep within.

I remember being a little girl when it started. I would wake my mom up in the middle of the night and tell her, “I have the feelings in my throat.” What I couldn’t communicate at that young age was I felt as if I couldn’t swallow. It was as if something was blocking my airway, but nothing really was. To this day, if a bad panic attack sets in, swallowing is difficult.

I’ve often felt ridiculous about being plagued with anxiety. I’m healthy, my family is healthy, we have nothing to complain about. Everyone goes through the mud at times, but we always reemerge and clean up well.  Many times I’ve thought, It’s a shame there are people in hospice care dealing with life better that I can. The whole thing causes guilt. And guilt does nothing more than lead to deeper anxiety.

I’ve asked God the famous question, “why?” The truth is, I’m not sure He’s ever answered specifically.  In fact, I’m not sure He’s ever answered that question at all. I’ve pretty much determined  the “why’s” of life are for Him alone and really none of my business. It’s the “How?”question He tends to answer best and most often.

When I ask, “How?” He answers, “Jesus.”

Jesus said to him, “I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through Me.”

-John 14:6

Jesus is the how. In every situation Jesus is the answer. Yes, I know, it sounds like a typical cliché Christian remedy with no layer of depth and not one admission to open mindedness. Welcome to the life of a Jesus Lover who knows God can beat any enemy, even anxiety. Having this belief system most certainly doesn’t make me any better than anyone else, and everyone who knows me will tell you I’m nowhere near perfect. The only place my Jesus lover self has an edge is where hope lives.

I’m a hope seeker, and I go to my knees to find it – To find Him.

I don’t battle anxiety nearly the way I used to. However, some days I feel all the old feelings. Today, I’ve been thinking about you who might be feeling panic and anxiety. I’m thinking of you who are waving a white flag of surrender because you feel you have zero control. Well, I’m no medical professional and when I feel it rising up, I often don’t believe I have any control either. And though some may disagree, I don’t think medication is off the table when you’re having proper counseling and medical supervision. However, I need to tell you this: In the middle of your darkest battle, BE A HOPE SEEKER. Don’t stop looking for hope, and don’t let your hope be called anything other than Jesus. Some days are harder than others and if we’re not careful, those days can dissuade us from living our purpose. Anxiety does nothing but work to distract us from hope. It makes us feel as if there’s something terribly wrong, when in actuality, God sent His only Son to make everything right.  No matter what today holds, our ending is victorious.

When we allow anxiety to filter our surroundings, hope becomes distant and freedom doesn’t register a definition. If we are going to battle anxiety with faith, then we must be willing to ask God for wisdom. We have to be patient, ready to take a deep breath and ask the question, how? In most cases, the question “Why?” leads to nothing more than distraction.

How do you deal with anxiety?

Love,

Jennifer

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Never Look Back

Never Look Back

When the apostle Paul wrote his first letter to the Corinthians, we can hear the passion in his voice. “The message of the cross is foolishness to those who are perishing, but to those of us who are being saved, it’s the power of God.” (See 1 Corinthians 1:18) Can you hear the plea? Do you feel his longing to communicate the importance of this message? He’s saying, “Salvation has come and we will never turn from the power of it!”

If you know anything about the personality of Paul, you know he’s not passive. This is a man who experienced a complete conversion causing total transformation of his life with no looking back. Even in his days of torturing saints, he was well versed in the word of God. In fact, if we were handing out degrees, Paul could have been awarded a Ph.D. in Jewish studies. This man knew the law of God, he just didn’t understand the heart of Him. When he was finally knocked off his horse, being made aware of the call of God on his life, there was no turning away.

Knowing Paul’s knowledge of the Old Testament, he must have been familiar with the story of Lot. That means he knew all about Lot’s wife and her decision to look back. (See Genesis 19) She couldn’t let go of that which ravaged ruin throughout her soul. Not Paul, though, he never looked back. He recognized the message of the cross as the power of God and after some time went on a mission to share that same power.

Maybe you’re wondering who Jesus is and what He came to do. Maybe you have a flicker of understanding, but aren’t really sure. Well, let me tell you that what Jesus came to do for your life, for every life,  is the power of God. His work on the cross doesn’t just demonstrate the power of God, it IS the power of God.  You don’t have to fully comprehend it. I mean, really, can anyone truly understand the mystery of love that deep? You just have to believe it. Belief in Jesus is the starting place for new life. It positions you to experience transformation and opens the door for freedom, healing, and wholeness. Believing is the beginning of a new start. Brand new beginnings bring hope! I don’t know about you, but I need hope to fuel my weary heart. Personally, I make a choice every single day to continue believing. I refuse to turn from the message of the cross. It is the power of God in my life. Friend, It’s the power of God in your life, too.

Be encouraged. There is power in the message of the cross. It never dies, never gets old, never changes. It’s new and fresh to everyone who accepts it, and will always be the source of every victory. It burrows deeply and roots itself inside. The Holy Spirit wants to change you! He doesn’t want to merely demonstrate power in your life, He wants to BE the power in your life. God is good and His power is working for you, to transform every situation, and to give you peace. There’s no need to ever look back. Ever.

Love,

Jennifer

For While You’re Waiting…

When You Arent Sure

I often sit down at my computer with a plan in my head of what I’m going to write, and how I’m going to craft it. Guess what? I almost never end up writing what I thought. I tend to be moved in a different direction and then wonder what in the world I was thinking after I post. Those are usually the words people connect with most. The Holy Spirit is amazing that way. He is our Guide.

This morning I was watching Good Morning America. They reported a story about a family who is dealing with a rare genetic disorder. Both of their daughters are suffering, and to date there is no known cure. At the end of the interview the question was posed, “Are you hoping for a miracle?” The father answered, “We are praying for one; counting on one.”

I instantly began to contemplate the weight of the second part of his answer. “Counting on one.” When you think about it, those are powerful words because we tend to hope and pray for what we need, but how often do we stand in faith to count on it? It isn’t easy; I know firsthand. I have some experience in praying for a miracle while losing just enough faith along the way to stop counting on it.

I don’t believe those are empty prayers, because I tend to think it’s okay to lose faith in the answer as long as we never lose faith in the One Capable of providing it. Sometimes, we get caught up in what we want rather than what He wants. And just to be clear, I believe in healing and that God wants healing for all. I don’t understand why some receive it while others don’t. Only God knows, and that’s the part where faith takes over. Faith helps us not lose sanity within the storm. I believe in praying and standing in faith for the desires of our hearts. Every last one of them should be fought for on our knees.

Some of us aren’t dealing with healing issues. Instead, we are dealing with lost dreams, broken hearts, you fill in the blank. However, we need to evaluate if it is God who actually placed those desires. When the word tells us He will give us the desires of our hearts, it means the desires He’s placed there. When the Holy Spirit is our Guide we are more apt to connect with those desires. Our story is rarely what we planned. We begin to want what He wants and then everything changes. His will be done.

Some of you stand today holding holy desires, counting on an answer, allowing the Holy Spirit to be your guide… still you wait wondering. Others aren’t sure anymore what the plan might be and are struggling to figure out the mystery – to figure out His mystery.

I want to encourage you to continue standing strong while counting on the One who provides everything we need and more. When you aren’t sure what the end holds, focus on the One who holds the end. Do everything possible to stop worrying about the end result and turn your eyes to the eternal result.

With humble hearts bent towards Him we cannot go wrong.

He will hold your hand through this!

For I, the Lord your God, will hold your right hand, Saying to you, ‘Fear not, I will help you.’

-Isaiah 41:13

He is good and full of mercy for you.

The Lord is good to all, and His tender mercies are over all His works.

-Psalm 145:9

He is faithful.

Your mercy, O Lord, is in the heavens; Your faithfulness reaches to the clouds.

-Psalm 36:5

He meets every need.

Delight yourself also in the Lord, and He shall give you the desires of your heart.

-Psalm37:4

Keep your eyes on Him.

looking unto Jesus, the author and finisher of our faith, who for the joy that was set before Him endured the cross, despising the shame, and has sat down at the right hand of the throne of God.

-Hebrews 12:2

I’m praying for you today.

Love,

Jennifer

 

 

Teaching Our Daughters to Fight…

JenniferKostick.com(7)

Every single day I look her in the eyes. They are deep blue and filled with the wonder of what’s to come. I see something familiar inside them. She’s called to be bold and brave, stand on a platform and tell others they have worth. She’s only seven, but I already know her gifts, and I know deep down she does, too. As her mother, I worry she’ll lose the sparkle in her eyes emanating from her heart of joy. I’m worried she won’t know to guard that joy. Every heart runs the risk of allowing thieves inside.

The world in which we live is a crowded place. Everyone has something to say, do, and become. We reach for bigger, better, and more until we’re so caught up in our own dreams we don’t bother to look for one second into the deep blue of someone else’s.

When the person next to her becomes jealous of the qualities she was born to possess, the abilities she has to lead and do, I don’t want her repositioning herself to follow  just because that person is uncomfortable with her capability to lead. I want her to stand tall and strong for what she believes, shutting up the voices trying to steal joy. No one can steal our gifts. But our joy, well, it’s up for the taking when we forget why we own those gifts and what the Giver intends when entrusting us with them.

The question becomes, how do we teach our daughters to fight and still be kind? How do we say, “Be the leader you are!” and still expect humility? How do we keep them safe from joy robbers, some of which have no idea the damage they’re capable of doing in one’s life? How???

When my oldest son was a tiny infant, a woman at church said, “That baby is going to keep you on your knees.” It scared me so much that I never forgot her statement. I worried it was prophetic and maybe my son would have struggles. It didn’t mean what I thought it did. Those words only meant that a mother’s love draws her to pray for her children. A mother’s love is a powerful force, pulling her on already bruised knees in quiet desperation. We pray hope-filled pleas for healthy, peaceful, joy-filled lives full of love, while giving glory to the Savior.

All three of my children have gifts to offer. I know this because every last one of us are born with them. the Creator forgets no one. However, I tend to worry more about the protection of joy surrounding my daughter’s God-given qualities. I know she has a ministry, and even at age seven I see it simmering as Jesus prepares her heart for the future. Joy propels tiny bubbles waiting to overflow in kingdom work.

As a woman, I’ve had my gifts stepped on many times in life. In the middle of those experiences I usually forgot to defend joy. In fact, I still struggle to let it flow. Here’s the thing: permission is pivotal. Giving yourself permission to not only use your gifts, but to let joy propel them in the midst of the storm, is essential.

I believe we need to educate our daughters. We have a responsibility to communicate that no one can steal their gifts.  It’s only the absence of joy that hinders the flow of them. We have to give them permission to fight for joy so that one day they will give themselves permission. It’s not about flesh and blood, it’s about darkness and learning how to properly defend ourselves from it. We have to constantly remind them that It doesn’t matter what anyone else says, it only matters what God says.

I’m in awe of childhood resilience. As adulthood occurs we’re usually not very pliable. Picking ourselves up isn’t as easy as it used to be. I liken it to my out of shape body after exercise. At the age of forty-three it’s much more difficult to recover than it was at twenty-three. It aches. Children roll with the punches. Adults… not so much. We tend to get stuck on the ground because sometimes getting back up hurts worse. But, when we educate our daughters and let them know it’s the getting back up that makes us better, and it’s okay to fight to do it, we can glorify God.

I’m a firm believer that when we commit our cause to Christ, He holds us up. He’s like the boxing coach in the corner of the ring giving instruction while taping up wounds. We love to think of Jesus as a sweet lamb rather than a roaring Lion, but I believe the Lion of the tribe of Judah wants us to stand our ground because He didn’t give those gifts for us to lose the fight. They are weapons in spiritual warfare! He intends us to live victoriously wrapped in His purpose! And, in case you don’t know, you have a mighty purpose!

It’s important we teach our children, and learn ourselves, that the gifts God gave us are ours for the keeping. Let’s learn to protect our joy. And, let us look to God to keep us humble in the process.

Who are we really fighting?

Remember the source of all enmity and stay the course with the name of Jesus on your hearts!

For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this age, against spiritual hosts of wickedness in the heavenly places.

-Ephesians 6:12

Love,

Jennifer

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You’re Braver Than You Know

YoureBraverThanYouKnow

I’m convinced that each day people live amazing stories without realizing what’s unfolding around them. In every moment, ready or not, the crazy beautiful unfurls. It often spills out in the form of tears, lost dreams, and maybe even includes some cemetery dirt. To find the lovely we have to pursue it, chase after it, lose our breath digging through what no one else would ever wish. It takes knees bent to the ground, audacious enough to be honest about their fury, in order to unearth holy fire.

Almost twenty years ago, I buried a baby girl in a pink casket. It changed my life – mainly because I almost buried myself with her. However, it was through the grieving process I became whole. In my book, I told a story about fighting insanity which begged me to go dig her up in the middle of the night. For a very long time, I thought every dream I ever had was buried in that tiny, pink death box six feet under.

You’re braver than you know.

 The Lord told Joshua to be strong and courageous; we have evidence of it in Joshua 1:9. Those words apply to all of us. When God spoke to Joshua, at the very same time, He was speaking to us. And, He was fully aware of it. It didn’t matter that we hadn’t yet been conceived, or hadn’t faced a fallen world with lots of hard quests to attempt conquering. He knew our names from the very beginning and when He believed in the patriarchs, He was believing in us at the same time. He spoke prophetically to a world full of humans He knew would one day exist.

Mind blowing, isn’t it?

It’s National Infertility Awareness Week and if you know me, then you know that fifteen years of my life was wrapped up tight in sorrow from miscarriage, stillbirth, and secondary infertility. You probably know I began writing because suffering led me to find my dreams again. Actually, it led me to dreams I didn’t know I had.

You may have never suffered infertility or fetal death of any kind, your problems might be entirely different. When it comes down to it, it doesn’t matter. Suffering binds us close, and when it comes to the language of tears we are all fluent. What does matter is this: there is a God who believes in you and knows you have it in you to be strong and courageous. He knows you have the ability to not only win this battle, but the whole war. Why? Because He’s already claimed victory for you. Jesus died to seal you victoriously with His spirit. Abundant life in every form is waiting for you!

Listen, we get wrapped up in over-thinking problems and losing faith inside fear. It doesn’t have to be that way. You aren’t defined by infertility, death, or grief from any source. You are defined by a living God who says, “You can do ALL things.” (See Philippians 4:13)

We must learn to serve God in the midst of “even if not” Yes, He can deliver you, but even if not, He has a plan. Even if not, He loves you. Even if not, every foe will be defeated! He tends to answer in His way rather than ours. He doesn’t need our advice or help, only our prayers and trust. It was when I learned to trust God in the midst of the even if not, that I became free to believe in the mystery of what might be next. What we cannot see is always more beautiful than what we think we can see. Our vision is more hazy than most of us would like to admit.

To all of you who are hurting, I want to challenge you to believe in the even if not. Trust in what He wills, and believe in the God who has always believed in you! Be strong and courageous! And if you feel like it’s not in your power to be strong and courageous, then good. Because it’s only in His power. Friend, it’s the only way. He is the only way!

Have I not commanded you? Be strong and of good courage; do not be afraid, nor be dismayed, for the Lord your God is with you wherever you go.”

-Joshua 1:9

Jesus said to him, “I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through Me…”

-John 14:6

Love,

Jennifer

If you would like to read my journey, you can learn more about my book by clicking here.

 

How Learning to be Faithful Leads to True Success…

You don't have to be the world's definition of successful, you only need to be God's definition of faithful.

I have a lot on my mind this morning as I sit down to share my heart with you. I’ve been away from this space longer than I planned. I’m working furiously on finishing a book that God put on my heart to write, and I can’t wait to place it in your hands. Would you remember me in prayer as I finish this process? I’m so grateful for you!

Writing a book can be lonely work, and there’s so much I want to convey. However, I want more than anything to be sensitive to the Holy Spirit as I place each word on the page. It’s a letter-by-letter process for me full of backspacing, deleting, and hot tears in prayer to Jesus as I work through my own healing in hopes the words, which are helping me to heal, might aid in healing someone else. More than anything, I pray these words will lead others to the Healer of everything.

I’ve learned that God usually calls us to the uncomfortable: tasks that situate us just outside our comfort zone and then requires an act of faith to succeed in following through.

“God does not require that we be successful, only that we be faithful.”

– Mother Teresa

Those words by Mother Teresa work letter-by-letter to string together pure wisdom that leads me straight to the center of a spiritual reality. We have to be willing, obedient, faithful, constant, and committed to the cause of Christ. Success is not measured in the eyes of men, but in the eyes of God. His definition is so much different from ours. He has a plan we cannot see and is using us in ways we cannot imagine. God does a lot of behind the scenes work and our main job is to be willing and faithful in whatever way He plans to use us.

For do I now persuade men, or God? Or do I seek to please men? For if I still pleased men, I would not be a bondservant of Christ.

-The Apostle Paul (Galatians 1:10)

You might not be writing a book, but I have no doubt you are called to work in a capacity much bigger than you can imagine. Right at this moment your gifts are being stirred up so that they are ready to pour out.

No matter where you find yourself today, God will use you in the place you are standing to influence someone else. The kindness of your character and the strength you hold in your situation will speak volumes to those around you. You don’t have to be the world’s definition of successful, you only need to be God’s definition of faithful.

But as it is written:

“Eye has not seen, nor ear heard,
Nor have entered into the heart of man
The things which God has prepared for those who love Him…”

-1 Corinthians 2:9

 

You are loved and there are amazing tasks waiting that only you can accomplish. Step outside your comfort zone and trust Him in the place you stand today.

For this reason I bow my knees to the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, 15 from whom the whole family in heaven and earth is named, 16 that He would grant you, according to the riches of His glory, to be strengthened with might through His Spirit in the inner man, 17 that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith; that you, being rooted and grounded in love, 18 may be able to comprehend with all the saints what is the width and length and depth and height— 19 to know the love of Christ which passes knowledge; that you may be filled with all the fullness of God. 20 Now to Him who is able to do exceedingly abundantly above all that we ask or think, according to the power that works in us, 21 to Him be glory in the church by Christ Jesus to all generations, forever and ever. Amen.

-Ephesians 3:14-20

Love,

Jennifer

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