I Don’t Need to Do that Anymore!

“Now Faith is confidence in what we hope for and assurance about what we do not see.” Hebrews 11:1

My teeth clenching has been bad again.  I am not sure if it was this U.S. election or the holidays were coming, but something was stirring up a lot of angst and frustration.  I was spent physically and emotionally.

Our daughter had her annual well check exam.  I was sitting in the waiting room.  All of a sudden, I felt this overwhelming peace come over me.  I heard , “I do not have to do this anymore”.  It had to do with anxiety and as a result my teeth grinding would cease.  As soon as I thanked the Lord for this word, I was hit with an episode of Vertigo.  I figured it must have been a strong word from the Lord and the enemy was angry that I believed it.  My husband was there and thankfully calmed me down before I panicked.  Despite feeling nauseous and woozy most of the day, I got through it.  

The next day, my friends’ church was having a healing night at their church.  I decided to go, because who doesn’t want to God to heal them of their physical and emotional ailments?  

After the pastor gave his sermon, he had people come up to be prayed over for their needs.

I told him what I needed prayer for: healing from anxiety and negativity that the teeth clenching that has caused me as well as the pain, dental work and Vertigo.  Pastor Malcolm, prayed over my Autonomic Nervous System and commanded in the name of Jesus, “you don’t need to do this anymore!”  I am sure he prayed more, but honestly I started to ugly cry and couldn’t hear a thing.  My faith became renewed and I knew God was in that moment.  

I was so convinced that I was healed that I didn’t wear my night guard that night.  The next morning, I woke up in a lot of pain and could barely move my jaw.  I made an appointment with a person that does massage and muscle work.  He is a Christian and I told them about my experience, but how it didn’t happen like I wanted.  He said, “I know you wanted this healing immediately, because you have suffered for such a long time, but that doesn’t mean it won’t happen.  Your faith needs to step in until the promise is fulfilled.”  

Wow.  I thanked him for the encouragement.  I wore my night guard and woke up the next day without pain.  This is the hard part, you hear from God and confirmations from others that God has healed me of certain needs, but it isn’t happening immediately.  I wrote down “I don’t have to do it anymore” on Post-its and placed them in places I know I will see them.   Every time I read it, I will thank the Lord for that promise until it is fulfilled.  In this process of healing, my faith will become stronger.  

Lesson Learned: When God gives you a word, it is a promise that He will fulfill in His way and timing, not my own.

Prayer:

“Dear Heavenly Father, thank you for your beautiful promises.  Forgive me for impatience and give me strength through the faith journey you brought for me.  I thank you for being Jehovah Rapha-The Lord that heals.  I will continue to serve you and be in expectation.  In Jesus’ Name, AMEN!”

No Need to Explain Myself

“Rather, it should be that of your inner self, the unfading beauty of a gentle and quiet spirit, which is of great worth in God’s sight.” 1 Peter 3:4

My daughter and I were wanting to donate our hair to “Pantene Beautiful Lengths” foundation because they make wigs for cancer patients.  Her haircut was adorable and she received numerous compliments.  I got my haircut and I didn’t get the outpouring of love that she received.  It looked good the first day I had the cut because of the hairdresser’s talent.  Afterward, I couldn’t get it to look the same way, even if my life depended on it.

The haircut was noticeable because 9 inches was cut off.  When people would notice the haircut, the main response was “oh you got a haircut” and that was it.  I found the need to defend myself and explain why I cut my hair for a good cause and  because the grays were coming in I had to hurry up and blah, blah, blah, blah and blah.  

I began to hear myself explain over and over about the haircut.  Why should I even care?  I realized I did this a lot in my life.  If I wanted seconds at a buffet or decided not to volunteer for something, I felt I had to give an explanation, longer than The Constitution,  to feel justified and to not receive judgement for my decision.

The fear of not being accepted has always been an issue.  I remember when I was getting married, my friends set up this treasure hunt for me at my Bachelorette Party and  I (unwillingly) wore this sign.

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I had to read the poem they wrote for me to every person that asked me.  We were at a very crowded outdoor shopping area on a Friday night in the summer.  Besides the poem, I had to do it with exuberance and do the “Oh what a feeling!” jump like the old Toyota commercials that ran in the late 90’s.  I was mortified.  I was having to use the bathroom every 10 minutes because I was so nervous. (TMI)

The poem went like this:

Scott, Scott, my wonderful Scott,

My world he rocks,

I melt when he talks,

He never wear socks,

But he is still such a fox.

Scotty, Scotty, he is for me!

(Toyota Jump)

I explained myself after poem, every time.  The friend who came up with the poem, made me a photo album for the event.  She even took a picture of me and captioned it, “here she is explaining herself”.  I couldn’t just go with it.  Then my friend led me into the main dining room at The Cheesecake Factory.  I thought I was going to pass out, but I said the poem anyway.  And as you can see in the picture, the crowded restaurant patrons were genuinely happy for this bride to be.

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(Sorry for the picture quality…operator failure…)

God wants us to enjoy our lives.  He wants us to be confident and bold.  Even if people don’t agree with our decisions or choices, we need to have the exuberance that God has and will alway have our back.

Lesson Learned:  Look to God for His approval and learn to have joy in this life.

Prayer:

“Dear Heavenly Father, give me the confidence to live my life without fear of being laughed at.  I bind and rebuke all insecurities that stop me from having fun.  So me when to be serious and when to have fun.  I thank you for the gift of laughter.  I know you want us to live joyfully. In Jesus’ Name, AMEN!”

Guilt (most times) is a Wasted Emotion

“Let us draw near to God with a sincere heart and with full assurance that faith brings, having our hearts sprinkled to cleanse us from a guilty conscience and having our bodies washed with pure water.”  Hebrews 10:22

Guilt…Us mothers lay it on thick to our children.  We use guilt to make others feel bad or believing we can create positive change.  We guilt ourselves over our dark past.  Just another tactic from the enemy to keep us from growing stronger in the Lord.

I joined a Women’s Bible Study at church.  After the main sermon, we are separated into small groups.  At the end of the group, there was a time for prayer requests.   A woman named Mary (name change) shared her current life situation.  She had a lot going on.  She was in emotional pain and was exhausted.

Over the next few weeks, Mary would ask for more prayers about her situation.  But she would always be guilt ridden for feeling exhausted about her situation.  She retired from a job she loved to move cities, so she could better take care of her husband due to his illness.  She just named 3 of the most stressful situations any human could endure.  She said people were telling her she shouldn’t feel upset about any of it.  She should be happy to be retired and move to a nice city.  Are you kidding me? What are people thinking?  And now she is feeling bad for not feeling the way they say she should?  Oh please.

I mailed her a card of encouragement, telling her to be gentle with herself.  It broke my heart to have her think she could not allow herself to be angry, scared or tired over all the change.  My hope was for her to know, we are praying for her and her husband and that she can allow herself to be tired and rest.  She thanked me in person for the card and she said it came at the right time.

It is so easy to do a blanket judgement over people’s situations when we do not know every detail.  We think people should be able to get over situations quickly and move on.  I have noticed people who are struggling, they don’t always need an answer, they usually just need to vent.  When we are feeling guilt, anger, frustration, whatever…God is there with open arms and open ears to hear us.  God is a good Father.  He loves us and help us through all struggles.  

Lesson Learned: Let’s kick the guilt out of our lives.

Prayer:

“Dear Heavenly Father, I give you those guilty feelings in my life.  Help me to know the difference between guilt and conviction.  I thank you Lord you are carrying me through all of life’s storms.  Lord, when I ask for forgiveness, help me to move on and not ruminate over my past.  In Jesus’ Name, AMEN!”

A Love Letter to my Legs

Dear Legs,

I haven’t been very nice to you in my life.  I never liked how you looked.  You tend to stay heavy, when the rest of me changes in weight loss.  I can’t find pants that fit.  I tried many exercises and diets to get you to look better but nothing worked to  my satisfaction.  I have decided I want my mind, body and soul to be connected in contentment.  So legs, I love and accept you.

I thank you legs, that you make it possible to walk.  You help me move through my days.  You protected me when I had that horse riding accident.  You kept me from breaking my femur.  I am sorry for not appreciating you.  I am sorry for not defending you when people called me fat.  I am sorry for calling you ugly.  But I am so thankful to you.

I will continue to have a positive, loving outlook about you.  Thank you for everything, I love you forever more.

Love,

Colette

 

What is My Legacy?

“Praise the Lord!  Blessed is the man who fears the Lord, who greatly delights in his commandments!  His offspring will be mighty in the land; the generation of the upright will be blessed.”  Psalms 112:1-2

Today, I was feeling sorry for myself (again).  I caught a cold over the weekend and my husband was away at a conference.  One of the appliances in the house overheated and every noise in the night woke me up and caused a sleepless night.  Wah…Wah…

I drove my daughter to school and walked her to class.  It was raining and cold and I felt like I was about to pass out.  A friend saw me and walked over towards me and I put my hand up and barked, “I’m sick and my husband has been out-of-town.”  She gave me a concerned look and said, “feel better!”.  I immediately felt guilt of not being able to force a smile.   She definitely didn’t see Jesus in me in that moment.

As I was driving home, I was listening to the radio.  There was a story of a 38-year-old woman who died of cancer.  She wrote her own obituary before she died.  In her obituary, she thanked the people in her life that she loved, she apologized to those who needed apologies and listed her joys and regrets.  The D.J. said that was an amazing legacy.

Legacy?  Isn’t that for Presidents, Warren Buffett or Bill Gates?   However, I realized we all have a legacy. But legacies can be good or bad, so what will mine be?  

My Legacy to be aligned with God’s will

For people to feel Jesus when they have an encounter with me

My writing to help people feel encouraged or at least not feel alone

 I want my husband and daughter to know how much I love them.  

So far…my legacy isn’t molding into what I want it to become.

When I came home from dropping off my daughter at school, I walked my dog and noticed my neighbors left their garage open.  I called her to ask if I had her permission to enter the garage to close it for her.  She said yes and said, “You truly are a God-send!  You always watch out for us and we appreciate you so much!”  I thanked her and continued on my walk.  I realized that simple action is apart of my legacy.  

My intent is not wanting to pat myself on the back for every little thing I do for someone.  You do want to make sure you are making a difference somehow.  During this election time, we see so many social injustices brought to light, like sexism, racism, and environmental disasters.  There is so much you want to stop or help, it is overwhelming.

This starfish story says it best…

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Lesson Learned:  Develop your legacy, even if it only affects a few or a lot of people.

Prayer:

“Dear Heavenly Father, I thank you for this life you have given me.  Forgive me for relenting in first world problems and not seeing the greater picture.  Help me discover, who you want me to reach in life.  Show me what causes you want me to spend my time and energy on.  Forgive me, when I get frustrated if I do not see the progress or appreciation in my legacy.  This is all for your glory.  Help me to realize that I don’t need to be wealthy or worldly powerful to make a difference.  Whether the difference I make is small or large, I give you all the glory.  In Jesus’ Name, AMEN!”