Friday, May 29, 2015

#FOODFORTHOUGHT: GIRL, DON'T TEMPT ME

Hey Loves! My schedule has been full so please excuse me for not being on schedule. It's Friday and I don't have points today (those all come from the spirit though). I do want to say that I have really been faced with temptation of all types this week. Like my flesh has been crying. There will be days where you are a strong soldier for the Lord. There will be other days when you have to lean on to the strength of God to get through. But on both days remember why you are living Holy. It's not to strive for perfection and it's not boast about how great our lives are. We live Holy because our daily lives are worship unto God. That's what he wants from us. He wants your pure worship.
A few months ago, if I would have been tempted, I would've easily let my flesh have its way. But I didn't stop walking with Christ even in my deliberate laying downs (I was too knowledgeable to call it a fall). Now when I am tested, I may be tempted and my flesh may cry out, but I don't succumb. I just think: "God, I am too far into you. I can't cheat on you. I love you. We are finally in a good space. People are depending on me living right and looking at my relationship with you. I can't stop worshiping you with my life." The moment of pleasure will last for only a little while, then the guilt will rush in, and the process to restore will take longer than expected.

Everything of the world is fleeting. Like many people, I have struggled with abstaining from sex, masturbation, pornography, not fasting and praying, not reading my bible, not spending quality time with God, overeating, procrastination, idolization of things, etc. The instant gratification is really instantaneous. Once you feel pleasure from these things, that good feeling is gone. I made a decision that I no longer wanted instant. I wanted something long lasting. Something reassuring. Something that would withstand the test of time. Something that determined time. Something that had my best interest. Something that made me a priority. Something that would challenge me to be a better person. Something that would make me grow into a better person. None of those things listed above have the ability to do that for you if you participate in them and make idols out of them. Having a relationship with Christ and making Him your one and only God are the only things that remedy instant gratification and satisfy you for a lifetime.

So I know its easier said than done, but stay strong. Seek God and pray in all things, at all times. If you are weak, turn to God. If you fall, don't stop moving forward. Life is a JOURNEY with ups and downs. You will be tempted; that's not optional. Your reaction to temptation: totally up to you. Will you have the strength to make a choice to gratify you flesh or worship Christ with your life? I don't miss the old me. SMOOCHES XOXO

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Wednesday, May 20, 2015

#FOODFORTHOUGHT: PRAY WITHOUT CEASING

Hey Friends! Of course, I had all intentions of covering another topic today. However, I have been swayed in another direction due to a change in my own behavior. I am praying about everything now. The following scripture is the only one I that comes to mind:

Rejoice evermore. Pray without ceasing. In every thing give thanks: for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus concerning you. (1 Thessalonians 5:16-18)



I just want to remind you that you must pray about everything. This week, I got good news; I prayed.  I got bad news; I prayed. I got sick; I prayed. I got annoyed; I prayed. I got angry; I prayed. I felt lust creep into my spirit; I prayed. I wanted to take over the world; I prayed. I wanted to give up; I prayed. I could clearly hear God; I prayed. I began to doubt; I prayed. I received some wisdom; I prayed. I felt like I knew nothing at all; I prayed. I did the right thing; I prayed. I made a mistake; I prayed. I prayed. I prayed some more. And I kept on praying.

Prayer isn't something you just do when you feel like it or because it's mandated by God. I had to learn this over the course of many years. Praying is a lifestyle and it is a choice. However, it is one of the best decisions you could ever make on your walk with Christ. He is our lifeline. He wants to talk to us and give us wisdom. However, how can He speak and we don't put ourselves in position to hear His voice. It's like being in the middle of the forest with no one around for hundreds of miles. You are screaming for your mother to find you but she can't hear you; no one can. And what makes all of this so bad, she gave you a phone that actually has a signal everywhere. All you had to do was charge it, but you neglected to do so.

Your lack of a prayer life is that dead phone. You can't wait until you get in trouble to call on God. You have to charge your prayer life and your relationship with Jesus daily. The longer you go without praying, the further you move away from Him. You have the Holy Spirit in you that can propel you through some of life's hardest trials. But don't you know the Holy Spirit is activated by prayer? If you don't pray, you don't have any fuel to make it. Prayer is the answer. Even if you haven't felt evidence of the Holy Spirit (speaking in tongues, for example) you can still have a strong prayer life and the presence of the Holy Spirit that is undeniable. Prayer is the tool we all need. It's your cell phone that Jesus gave you. It has a strong signal anywhere we go, in any point of our lives, and in any trial we may endure.

We all know (or have heard when others have prayed) that when you pray you must acknowledge who Jesus is, repent of your sins, and give Him praise. Here are some other things to remember about prayer.

1. Just Start. Okay, so you don't pray everyday and maybe you haven't prayed in a while. Don't go another second unconnected. Get charged and start praying NOW!

2. Simple is okay. You don't have to be deep, and it doesn't have to be long. Even if you just thank God for waking you up, at least you are communicating your gratitude to Him. He hears it and will began to show you other sides of Him if you truly are having trouble coming up with things to pray about. Pray about the things you know until He increases your wisdom.

3. Don't Wait for Fireworks. You could cast out demons and raise your prayer life from the dead while you are having a great one-on-one session with God and not feel a quickening or anything from the Holy Spirit. Good News: That's not a sign that God didn't hear you. Better News: The Holy Spirit is still there with. Just because you don't feel it in your flesh doesn't mean it isn't taking root in your heart and spirit.

4. Anywhere, Anytime. I know growing up, we were taught to say your prayers every night on your knees, by your bedside. Many preach about praying early in the morning before you start the day. Both awesome practices to build your praying stamina. However, don't let it limit your prayer life either. I often pray in the car, the bathroom at work, or a garden near my office. I even prayed at my desk today. Pray whenever you need to, no matter the time or place.

5. Be genuine. All I am going to say is don't play with God. He already knows everything. Prayer with Him is supposed to be freeing because you can lay all of your baggage before Him. Yes, He will correct you. But at least it is off your back and no longer weighing you down.

6. Its a habit. If it's not, you need to make Prayer your habit. Complaining and gossiping used to be habits for me but I made a decision to replace those vices with prayer. Prayer is an essential virtue. We all need it. No matter how you slice it, everyone is brought to their knees eventually if they keep walking.

So, PRAY! Prayer is always advised when I write a post like this one. Surely, praying is one of the most important things in my life and I am grateful to have it as one of my weapons of choice when I feel the enemy wants to come for me. I want you to be well equipped and armored also. Slay, Pray, SMOOCHES XOXO

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Thursday, May 14, 2015

#FOODFORTHOUGHT: 5 TIPS FOR LOVING OTHERS

Hello Faves! I have been very irritable lately with people. I don't want to be and I am consistently asking God to help me fix that in my heart. I am naturally an introvert and I find solace alone rather than around others. That doesn't mean I don't like people or enjoy being around them. I like fellowship and even entertaining guests at times. But lately I've wanted to pull away and the Lord has put me in a position where I can't. I am beginning to really not like people.


Don't be alarmed because we all get there sometimes. My issues stem from the relationship between the Lord and I maturing. He really wants my full focus on Him. I am an introvert who is also a people pleaser (how does that work?). I prefer to avoid confrontation which at times has caused me to not stand up for myself. I want to support, help, love and be there for everybody. But it drains me when people are unappreciative, use me, forget what I've done in the past (or at least that's what their actions portray), don't support my ventures in return, or don't include me in other parts of their lives. This used to hurt my feelings and tear me up on the inside. I want people to like me, I want to like them, and I want to feel accepted. But I've realized that I idolized acceptance, and I wanted relationships, friends, and fellowship more than I wanted a relationship with Christ. Now, I am just in my feelings. The Lord has been working on this area of my heart for awhile but it still bothers me. I want to draw into myself and stop loving others so that no one will get on my nerves. Right now, I am being tested in this area heavily and I really want to pass so that I can move on to the next section of this exam. I don't know if you have read my last couple of #FoodForThoughts but they all have a common theme. The Lord is not worried about my businesses, my love life, or my money. God is trying to get me to change my heart and my perspective.

So, I didn't know what else to do but turn to the Word of God. At first, I googled "Scriptures on not liking people" (LOL), but I didn't get a clear search on what I wanted. So I tried to think of one word that summed up how I feel. The word that came to mind, was "Irritated." I was slightly angered, annoyed, roughened, and a little hurt, which are all a reactions to being stimulated by people in the wrong way. Until the end of time, people are going to irritate me and I am going to irritate them. However, there has to be a way to deal with this in a positive manner. So I typed "Irritated" into my YouVersion Bible App search, and this scripture returned:

Love is patient and kind. Love is not jealous or boastful or proud or rude. It does not demand its own way. It is not irritable, and it keeps no record of being wronged. It does not rejoice about injustice but rejoices whenever the truth wins out. Love never gives up, never loses faith, is always hopeful, and endures through every circumstance. (1 Corinthians 13:4-7 NLT)

The answer is LOVE. As Christians, no matter what others do to us, we are supposed to love our brothers and sisters with the love of Christ. The scripture above gave me a guideline or 5 tips for loving others no matter what.

1. Be Patient. We have to wait on God to guide us through our relationships with others. We also can't assume that people understand our point-of-view. Sometimes, we have to wait and give people a chance to process what has transpired. We have to give them the opportunity to respond.

2. Be Kind. It's easy to lash out when you feel like someone has hurt you. But the true test of love and maturity is to be kind. Salt for salt never works. Sprinkle some sugar and kill them softly with kindness. They may be convicted by your kindness and decide to choose love as well.

3. Be Hopeful. Don't think the worst about confrontations and people before you even get in the situation. If you feel that a matter has to be addressed, trust God, let Him lead you, and know that His will be done no matter the outcome. If you do all you can do in a situation to secure a positive outcome, the rest of your hope is in what God wants the result to be.

4. Stand in Truth. Be honest about how you feel and don't be swayed in what you know in your spirit to be the right thing. This tip requires the previous 3 tips because you can't throw shade or low-blows because you know the truth. But if you are convicted by the truth, you have to stand firm in that and leave the rest to Christ. On the flip side, you have to make sure that you acknowledge all of your wrongs, lay them out on the table, apologize, ask for forgiveness from them, the Lord, and yourself.

5. Endure. If all of the above tips fail to yield an end to the irritating instance, you just have to go through this test and trial gracefully. Remember all the "Don'ts" listed in the scripture above: don't be jealous, don't be boastful, don't be rude, don't be demanding, don't keep records of wrong, don't rejoice about their pitfalls, don't give up, and don't lose faith. Simply put, don't be petty. After you have done all you could to love someone through a hard relationship trial, you have to lean on the love and strength of God to get through the hurt.

I hope the tips pulled from the scripture help you to better navigate and even mend the relationships with the people in your life. We can't change people, but we can seek God and let Him change our hearts into one that looks like His. A heart that is not easily irritated but very quick to show compassion. "The greatest of these is Love" & SMOOCHES XOXO.

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Wednesday, May 6, 2015

#FOODFORTHOUGHT: NOTE TO SELF

Hey Loves! I was originally going to post a piece I wrote inspired by everything going on in Baltimore right now. However, the Lord convicted me about it and I decided not to post it. I didn't ask Him why but I am not sure as to why either. But I obeyed Him anyway. Then it dawned on me, I better take note of this.

This post is not for those of you who are in their rebellious stage with Christ. I just got out of mine. I wouldn't listen to the Lord and He was talking to me all the time. So much so, I tried to drown out His voice by not reading the Bible as often, not spending time with Him as much as I should, watching horrible reality TV, and leaning on other bad habits to fill the void of Him and to stay distracted. I did anything not to be reprimanded and forced out of my comfort zone by God. I just got out of it because I slowly had to get better and learn to trust Him. It was a process. It took me three years to stop being rebellious, to listen to God, and to walk in my calling, without asking Him questions of doubt. I only have faith and trust that He would do what He said now. But since you are a rebel, you are going to read this post anyway ;) I hope this prepares you for the next level that God wants to shift you to.

So, as I said before, I have to take note of this moment where the Lord is saying no to me posting this post. When the Lord says no, it is because now is not the time, it is not for you, it is for later, He is trying to protect you from it, or He is trying to teach you something. We have to remember that the Lord sees things that we can't see. I don't know what could have happened if I would've posted that post. It is not that serious to me because what I see doesn't seem like it could cause damaging effects. But the Lord knows it all so trust Him, stop wasting your time, and listen to Him.

To touch back, one thing we don't hear often about the Lord's "No" is that he is trying to teach us something through being denied. Think about it: A child asks his parents for a new video game and the child has been doing well at home and in school. Except, the parents see that he broke and tore up his last video game that they bought him. The parents decide to tell the child no, hoping that the child will learn not to disrespect his gifts and learn the value of earning his own money and buying what he wants through hard work. So "No" is sometimes an opportunity to Learn the Lesson while He has you attentive and listening.

So now to bring this all the way back around. You may be saying, "How can I learn a lesson when all I hear the Lord saying is no." Well, take some notes to self. When the Lord says no, analyze the situation you were in. Think about the clear directives and instructions the Lord has already given you. Remember the details surrounding the situation He said "no" to because He will reveal His "why" later. Trust and know that the Lord only wants what's best for you. If the Lord wants you to learn from this, it must be serious for Him to give you a clear "No."

My Note to Self: OBEDIENCE. The Lord has been testing me with little things to be obedient over. He's been talking to me not about serious, life changing things, but small decisions I've never even thought to include Him on. He has been telling me "No" and "Yes" and talking back. It is blowing my mind that the Lord cares about even the smallest things going on in my life. I love Him so much that I will do whatever He tells me to do. But as I told you before, this feeling and this obedience is new. He probably knows of some bigger decisions down the line where I will need Him and He has to trust that I won't lean onto my own understanding but talk to Him, obey what He tells me to do, and let the decision I make become a "God Thing" and not a "Lisa Thing."

So My Note to You: When the Lord speaks to you, tells you "yes," or he tells you "no," remember everything and even write it down if you have to. With a pure heart and a clear mind, analyze what the Lord is trying to show you. And even if you never find out why the Lord allowed you or denied you, know that it is apart of His perfect will and best plan for your life. Obey the SMOOCHES XOXO

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