People think I’m lucky But I know it’s grace.

I have about 345232 questions running through my head. I am not a fan of uncertainty. I like actions, plans, steps, and lists. I like things to fit into organized boxes. This week is challenging me in more ways than one. I want to know exactly when and how things are going to work out. Those are my exact worries right now. Then I saw the Proverbs 31 Facebook update which was literally my feelings and anxiety at the moment. Renee Swope posted: “Faith means obeying God even when all my questions aren’t answered.” Allllllll Right. Way to call me out by name there. Middle named me and everything. I see what you did you there. Lord, your timing is absolutely astounding. It never ceases to amaze me.

A friend of mine posted Isaiah 26:3 today which says: Thou wilt keep him in perfect peace, whose mind is stayed on thee: because he trusteth in thee. I went on to read verse 4 which says: Trust ye in the LORD for ever: for in the LORD JEHOVAH is everlasting strength. Ok. I needed that today. I needed some peace and reassurance. I don’t like when things are all up in the air and I don’t have a plan, but that’s what the struggle is right now. I have to change my perspective. I needed to be reminded that You are everlasting strength. I needed this lesson in trusting You.

Hannah Brencher posted a while ago on Instagram: “Because only in the darkness do we know light. Only, and only, if ever there was a word called ‘darkness’ would there be a reason to create another word to counter that word called ‘light.’ And maybe that’s just life: patches of darkness and patches of light. Sometimes we see it all so clearly. Sometimes we don’t know the way. Sometimes we grab the hands of others too tightly and they’re just thankful – just so thankful – that you’re finally grabbing on and needing to be held.” I definitely do not know my way right now and I am totally grabbing the hands of those around me. I struggle with that too because I’m stubborn and I don’t like to ask for help, but sometimes I just cannot do it alone and I don’t have to. I am blessed beyond measure by those that love me. Genesis 1:3-4 says: Then God said, “Let there be light”; and there was light. God saw that the light was good; and God separated the light from the darkness. He separated the light from the darkness. Martin Luther King, Jr. said: “Darkness cannot drive out darkness only light can do that.” I heard that “sometimes God lets you be in a situation that only he can fix, so you will discover that he is the one who can fix it.” Casting Crowns has this song called Just Be Held and I was reminded of the lyrics today: “If your eyes are on the storm, you’ll wonder if I love you still, but if your eyes are on the cross, you’ll know I always have and I always will.” Those words meant so much to me today.

So, that is my prayer today. I pray that I look to you. I pray that I concentrate on the cross and not my problems. Lord, I know you love me and I know you have me. I know you’re taking care of me. I pray that you separate the light from the darkness. I pray that I see the light. I pray that I keep grabbing your hands and the hands of my loved ones who are going above and beyond to help me. I pray that I trust you. I pray that I lean on you. I pray that I give you my struggles. Thank you for your strength. Thank you for teaching me. I pray that I get my peace and strength from you. I pray that I put my faith in you. Thank you for everything you’ve done for me. I pray that I continue to see how blessed I am, even when I struggle. I know that you have a plan for my life and you are working for me. Thank you for that.  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.

It’s time for us to more than just survive, we were made to thrive.

Why do we hold each other back? Why do we belittle each other? We tell each other we’re weak and won’t amount to anything. We’re gonna struggle forever so, we might as well just accept it, right? No. I refuse to accept that. I am not built to just survive. You made us for so much more than that. You created a purpose in each of us. You created a reason for our existence. We were put on this earth to bring glory to Your name.

I have been told that I’m weak, too quiet, too nice, too loud, too abrasive, too this and too that. I am tired of listening to other people criticize me and who I am. I am Your child. I am created with a mission and an opportunity to work towards Your plan. I am content exactly where I am because this is where You placed me. I am content exactly how You made me because I am exactly who You need me to be. No, I am not perfect. I make mistakes, but those mistakes are teaching me things that You need me to learn. The preacher at my church always says this thing that I absolutely love!! “You love us too much to let us stay the same.” You want us to learn and grow. You want us to thrive. You want us to change and shape the things around us. You want us to be mirrors and reflect Your light to everyone around us. You want more for us than what we would settle for.

So, that is my prayer today. I pray that like the song says we dig deep into your word so that we can know your heart. I pray that we reach into the world to show them who you are. I pray that we thirst for more of you. I pray you fill our hearts and flood our souls to know you and to make you known. I pray we lift your name on high. I pray that we learn to find joy unspeakable, faith unsinkable, love unstoppable, and anything is possible through you. I pray that we stop letting others limit us because that means we are letting them limit you. Thank you for being limitless. Thank you for making me just the way I am. Thank you for placing me here for a reason. Thank you for letting me have a small part in your grand plan. I pray that I keep working. I pray that I keep trying. I pray that I keep learning. I pray that I do more than just survive.  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.

You are with us.

Today is one of those days where I am just emotional for no reason. I am completely afraid of everything even though I have no reason to be. Fear is defined as: “an unpleasant emotion caused by the belief that someone or something is dangerous, likely to cause pain, or a threat.” So, because I like lists, here is a list of my biggest fears:

1. Bridges

2. Car Accidents

3. Death

4. Losing Loved Ones

5. Feeling Inadequate

6. Loneliness

7. Elevators

8. The Future

9. Failure

10. Getting Hit

Why am I so scared when I have You? They call You Emmanuel which literally means “God is with us.” 

Lord, You set us free from all our fears. In You, we can find rest and peace. In You, we can find joy. In You, we don’t have to have anxiety. We can lay everything at the feet of the cross. Lord, You save us. Psalm 121:1-2 says: “A Song of Ascents. I lift up my eyes to the hills. From where does my help come? My help comes from the LORD, who made heaven and earth.” 

In the movie He’s Just Not That Into You, the girl I related to the most was told that she likes the drama; that she liked the fear. He called her out so, she decided to cut the additional unneeded anxiety out. I realized I do this too. I add unnecessary stress by:

1. Waiting until the very last second to put gas in the car.

2. Returning Redbox movies at the last minute.

3. Over planning.

4. Over analyzing every word spoken to me.

5. My irrational fears.

I realized that these things hold me back, and I should just fix my eyes on You.

Today, the soundtrack in my head was playing a lot. It made me realize: 1. You are with us. 2. My help comes from You. 3. I should fix my eyes on all that You are. Basically all my useless drama, anxiety, stress, and fears come from my need for control. I want to control everything, but I can’t. I need to give you the reins and realize you are already there.

So, that is my prayer today. I pray that I let go of my need for control. I pray that I let go of my anxiety and stress. I pray that I let go of my fears because no matter what my fears are you are already there waiting to take care of me. You are already there waiting for me to take your hand. You are already there ready to help me. Lord, you already broke the chains, so I pray that I learn to put them down. I pray that I learn to give you the control. I pray that I learn to praise in the storm. 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.

We are one body.

When I was a kid, we used to sing this song in church. We would all hold hands across the pews and sing our hearts out. It’s one of my favorite memories. We did it practically every Sunday, which made me totally happy. I felt empowered after and ready to go out into the world. I have tried to find the song everywhere. All I can remember is “we are one body.” It made so much sense to me that we were one body. We were extensions of You. We were Your hands and feet. We were sent here to share Your love. What I like most is that we are one body. We are united through You. Philippians 4:13 says: “I can do all things through him who strengthens me.” Casting Crowns has a similar song.

Colossians 3:15 says: “And let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts, to which indeed you were called in one body. And be thankful.” So, since it’s Thanksgiving. Here is what I’m thankful for:

1. My family, my friends, my sisters, my person, my soulmate, my littles, and all the lovely people in my life.

2. The University of South Alabama and all the wonderful people that work there.

3. My country, the great state of Alabama, and all the brave men and women in uniform.

4. Country music and southern accents.

5. Albert, my beautiful car.

6. The Alpha Gamma Delta Foundation and all the amazing people contributing to the world’s work.

7. Faith, Hope, and Love. 1 Corinthians 13:13 says: “And now these three remain: faith, hope and love. But the greatest of these is love.”

8. Taylor Swift for showing me it’s ok to dance everywhere you go and fall in love with everyone you meet.

9. Hannah Brencher for inspiring me to bring more love to the world.

10. Miranda Lambert for showing me how to be strong and kind at the same time.

11. Dolly Parton for showing me how to stay humble and have big hair.

12. My life. I’m thankful that I’m here and I get to continue to use my talents and gifts for You.

So, that is my prayer. I pray that you use me. I pray that we are one body. I pray that your arms are reaching. I pray that your hands are healing. I pray that your words are teaching. I pray that your feet are going. I pray that your love is showing them the way. I pray that I use Psalm 119:105, which is: “Your word is a lamp to my feet and a light to my path.” I pray that I keep listening to you. I pray that I keep seeing you. Thank you for sending your son for us. Thank you for giving me life. Thank you for making me who I am. I pray that I use the talents and gifts you gave me to bring glory to you. I pray that I show more love. I pray that I show more kindness. I pray that I show more compassion. I pray that I show more generosity. I pray that I continue to be thankful for everything around me. 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.

I surrender all.

How to be Awesome part 4: “Give, Give Give.” There are three parts to giving in this video.

1. “Give Thanks.”

I think it’s really great that when she’s upset she writes thank you notes. Like what a great way to literally turn your frown upside down. I think it’s such a wonderful idea to take that negative energy and turn it into something positive and realize that yes, today is kinda awful, but like I have so much to still be thankful for.

2. “Give your gift.”

She said “Nobody can say it how you say it. Nobody can give the gift how you give it.” That really spoke volumes to me. (It reminds me of that It Ain’t Yours to Throw Away song! That man’s voice just melts my heart!) Like You gave us each this specific gift to share with the world. She also talked about how you have to give it back to yourself too. I totally related to that and appreciated it like I totally forget to take care of myself sometimes.

3. “Give love.” 

She broke this one down even further: “Give praise, give encouragement and giving to yourself.” Then she goes on to add: “I made the conscious decision that if I have an inclination to do something good I am going to do it.” The message that sends is so bold and powerful. I like how she ties it back to the second part of How to be Awesome by saying basically who cares if you look stupid. Like if you love, go big, give it all you have. I like how she discussed giving for the right reasons and with a pure heart.

Lord, I want to give this and more to You. I want to come to You with a willing heart. I want to surrender it all to You.

“All to Jesus I surrender
All to Him I freely give
I will ever love and trust Him
And in His presence I will live
I surrender all, I surrender all

All to Jesus I surrender
Lord, I give myself to thee
Fill me with Your love and power
Let Your blessing fall on me
All to Jesus I surrender”

So this is my prayer today. I pray that I learn to give a little more. I pray that I give more of my myself, more of my thanks, more of my gift, and more of my love. I pray that I give more to you. I pray that I surrender it all you. I pray that I lay all I have at your feet. I pray that I give everything I have to you and I pray that I give with a willing and pure heart. I pray that I give to others. I pray that I share your love and all you have given with me with others. I pray that I keep my heart focused 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.