All my fears and doubts, they can all come too because they can’t stay long.

I got hooked on Pastor Mike Todd’s messages last year when I heard the first Marked sermon on Elevation Church’s youtube page. Then I might have low key stalked Pastor Mike Todd. Like followed on all social media and followed his wife. So, when he turned the Marked message into a series, I WASN’T READY!

As I’ve been watching these sermons, I was finishing up the foster parenting classes. When I finished those classes I took the Family Life: Art of Parenting online course. I thought I was ready to be a foster parent and all that entailed. I had the training I needed, I was in the Word, I was praying and seeking counsel from other believers. But I hit some snags in the road. Some called them stop signs. Some tried to encourage me to keep going. Some were dumbfounded. I had no idea what I was doing or where I was going, but I knew I was Marked.

In this last sermon, Pastor Mike said: “being marked it not about us, it’s about others.” I could have screamed that and jumped up and down! Like YASSS Lord. This week’s message was about honor. And You already know, it hit the nail on the head for me. I was struggling recently. I got carried away and let things get ahead of me so things slipped past my control. Then, I thought I had to chose one or the other. I could honor my future family that I am working so hard to build or I could honor the family that worked so hard to build me. I was getting ready to leave one family in order to build one of my own, which is a normal next step in life, I’m just doing it a little different. And let’s face it, I’ve always been a little different. I realized that I don’t have to chose one or the other, I can honor both, differently. And I learned another lesson about boundaries (the hard way, I might add).

I know that nothing happens without a purpose. I know not to ask why, I know to ask what am I going to do with what I have left. That’s another lesson I learned the hard way. The previous message in the Marked series was: I’m Armed and Dangerous. In this sermon, Pastor Mike gave us a little fill-in-the-blank that goes like this: “Then Alyssa, armed only with her Bible and her perspective started writing.” I got all kinds of excited because ya girl’s love language is words. So I continued! Then Alyssa, armed with her Bible and her writing started working in group homes. Then Alyssa, armed with her Bible and her work and started foster parenting classes. With no house and now no job, I might add, I sure do everything the hard way. I could list all the things I didn’t have and how unprepared I was or still am. Which I’ve been doing a lot of lately, ya know stressing.

But Lord have mercy, You had a Word for me with this Marked series. Like in the You Are Enough sermon, I learned “ridiculous is required.” And ridiculous is trying to be a parent with no home. I also learned in another message “perspective needs to move above the obstacle.” So, I got no home, but I am Heaven bound, so I need to start acting like it. In another sermon, Pastor Mike taught that “obedience doesn’t require details.”

So, here is my prayer today. I pray I let Pastor Mike’s teaching seep right into my soul and my heart and my mind. I pray I learn how to honor all people. I pray I learn how to love my brotherhood. I pray I learn to fear you. I pray I learn to honor the king. I pray that I walk in faith. I pray that when I lose myself, I find you. I pray I remember where my anointing comes from. Jesus, you are the way when there is no way. You are the light when all I see is darkness. You are the truth when all I hear is lies. Father, keep teaching me. Father, I need you. Father, I love you. Father, I thank you. I put my eyes on you. And as always I pray for my family and sorority sisters. I pray for my university. I pray for guidance for our government, church, and school leaders. I pray for protection for our troops. I pray for all of those that need you now and for those that haven’t met you yet. In Jesus’ name, Amen.