Meet me at the Crossroads

Walls

What do you want?

Not to be confined in tight spaces
With unfinished walls closing in on me
I don’t fit here
Or here
In this space, the opening is too narrow
This one is too
I thought this was my place, but it isn’t
Maybe I’ll go back
No, no going back
Be honest, don’t lie
Too scared to break out
Not sure what direction to take
Sit
Wait
Have faith
Pray
So hard to wait for direction


Prayer

Lord I feel like I am at a crossroad. I don’t know what direction to take. I just know that I don’t feel like I am in the right place.  Your word says that if we seek wisdom, then we will find it. I am asking for wisdom. Please point me in the right direction. Open the doors that need to be open.  In Jesus name, Amen.

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You Suck at Being You

YOU
be the taste of something different
not shuffled in with the rest
stand out like the like a pop of red in a barren field
not a muted color fading into the background
step forward and be noticed
not overlooked as ordinary
be noticed
noticed for YOU
Your gifts
Your talents
Your strengths
YOU

Prayer
Thank you Lord that I am fearfully and wonderfully made. Thank you for making me something special. Let me be what you have called ME to be. Help me not to compare myself to others. Help me to know that I am okay to be me because I am just who you created me to be.  Amen.

What Are You Struggling With?

struggle goal setting Tonight I was listening to a podcast and the host asked, “What are you struggling with?” This question got me thinking that this was a great prompt to use to complete my Sunday goals list. Each Sunday, I sit down and write ten goals that will help me focus on the most important things in my life. This week, I decided that I am going to share them here. These are ten issues that I am struggling with in various areas of my life.

  1. I will schedule time on Wednesday and Saturday and write new blog posts.
  2. I will walk at least 6,000 steps 5 days this week.
  3. I will fast breakfast 3 days this week.
  4. I will pay off my Visa credit card.
  5. I will have a date night out with my husband.
  6. I will get at least 7 hours of sleep each night.
  7. I will study my Bible daily.
  8. I will create a FAQ sheet to help teachers with tech.
  9. I will research a self-hosted blog.
  10. I will read just for fun.  🙂

It helps me to write my goals as an “I will” statement. It’s something that I picked up as an educator. It makes me believe that I can achieve my goals.

What are you struggling with? Do you have any goals for this week? 

4 Ways to Avoid Falling For Temptations-Day 7

doughnut temptationI get a little annoyed with temptations, as if I am above being tempted. I know I’m not, but I would love if I could go to a party and just not want to eat the hot , creamy, buffalo chicken dip. Why can’t exercise always be a joy and it never cross my mind not to do it? Unfortunately, we are all faced with temptation.

1 Corinthians 10:13 says,  Every test that you have experienced is the kind that normally comes to people. But God keeps his promise, and he will not allow you to be tested beyond your power to remain firm; at the time you are put to the test, he will give you the strength to endure it, and so provide you with a way out.

It makes me feel better to know that everyone has temptations. They are completely normal. Temptations don’t come because we are a failure or  because God is seeing how faithful we can be. Temptations are a part of life. So what do we do when temptations come?

  1. Don’t set yourself up.

There are so many times when we set ourselves up for failure. Remember, my episode with the Lays chips. You can read about it here.  I know I can’t eat just one chip. I know it is a trigger food for me but I bought not one bag but TWO bags of chips! Temptation will come but don’t create it for yourself.

2.  Put some distance between you and your temptation.

There was cake at work yesterday. There was cheese strudel pastry the day before that and last week, it was Krispy Kreme donuts.  There is always some kind of temptation in our work room. The best thing I can do is to avoid it. The work room is the short cut to other offices but on days that temptations lay in wait, I take the long way around.

3. Remember your goals.

Wikipedia is not usually my go-to for resources, but today, when I Googled the word temptation, I found something pretty good. It said temptation is a fundamental desire to engage in short-term urges for enjoyment, that threatens long-term goalsTemptation is always a short-term urge.  Giving in to temptations creates short term enjoyment but it’s a surefire way to demolish your long-term goals.

4. Wait and pray.

1 Corinthians tells us that God will never tempt us beyond what we can handle . It goes on to say that he will provide a way out when we are tempted. I know sometimes this feels far from the truth. But He is such a loving God and I have to have faith that what He says is true. Often when I am tempted by food, I ask God to show me the way out and give me the ability to resist the temptation. Easier said than done, right? I know. Join me in reading Kimberly Taylor’s great weight loss devotional. 

Prayer

Thank you Lord for your Word.  Help me to remember that temptation is a part of life. Thank you for your love and always providing a way out of temptation. Keep me focused on my long-term goals and not on short-term joy. Amen.

Help! Drowning!

help drowning I went back to work this week and I already feel like I have put in a few MONTHS worth of work. Being an educator is hard work. Supporting educators is hard work. Growing little minds is even HARDER work! God bless all of the teachers as they head back to work!  I don’t know which is more tired, my brain or my body. I’ve spent the last few days walking from classroom to classroom helping set up technology, troubleshoot computer issues, plan lessons. This last week has required a lot of walking and a lot of brain power.

Elementary teachers never get to leave campus during the school day. The week before students come back to school, we take advantage of eating out. Not eating school cafeteria food is a special treat for us. Heck, it’s a special treat for anyone! school lunch lunch lady And it’s nice to actually get to spend some time together without having to choke down our food in 15 minutes.  I have to admit that I have not made the healthiest food decisions. I’ve eaten delicious slices of pizza from Mellow Mushroom, beef and cheddar sandwiches from McCallisters, and Home wrecker Burritos from Moe’s. As I’m typing this, none of it sounds delicious anymore.

Ten to twelve hour work days mean that I have not made time to plan dinners for home or go grocery shopping. I’m trying to think of what I actually ate for dinner this week. Obviously, it is not memorable and was most likely crap. Honestly, after a long day,  all I have wanted to do is sit on the couch with my hubby and veg with a little TV.  (This only happens on the nights I am not babysitting my two-year old granddaughter. Insert lots of chasing, screaming, and laughter if I am.)  My bed starts calling my name around 9, but then I can’t turn off my brain. So I don’t fall asleep until around 11 or 12. Around 5:30 a.m., the the day starts all over again. There is no such thing as a morning workout. I. am. too. tired.

Getting back in the swing of work is COMPLETELY throwing off my “healthy rhythm”.

So what’s the plan?  Uh, I’ll let you know when I have one.  I definitely have to get some balance back in my life.

Prayer

Lord, help!

The Secret to Sticking to a Healthy Lifestyle -Day 6

stay healthyThere is a secret to help you stick to your healthy lifestyle. The secret is to stay qualified. You’re probably thinking, “What does that mean?”.  Well, this morning I read 1 Corinthians 9:27.

“But I discipline my body and bring it under subjection (training it to do what it is supposed to do) otherwise, when I preach to others, I’ve disqualified myself.”

This verse has stepped on my toes and made me say ouch! In order to stay qualified, we have to DO what we spend time telling others about. I am in the beginning of my weight loss journey but I know what it takes to be healthy and lose the weight. I have done it before. Often times this knowing, makes me pipe up and tell others how they should eat and exercise. But I have to be careful with thi, I have to make sure that I am disciplining my own body and walking the walk.  So how do we get our bodies in line with what we know we should do?

Begin by writing down your goals.

I’ve recently gotten into the habit of spending Sunday writing down my goals. Habakuk 2:2 says to write down our vision so that we can plainly see it. This helps me to focus on what’s important in my life. I only focus on a week at a time. It is important to have long-term goals but short-term goals help to keep you really focused. Here are some of my goals for this week :

  1. Exercise on Monday, Wednesday and Friday.
  2. Count calories daily using My Fitness Pal.
  3. Drink two mason water containers.
My Mason Jar Cup
My Mason Jar Cup

I make sure that my goals are specific and measurable. By doing this, it is easy to go back and look and how I did for the week.

Spend time focused on a healthy lifestyle.

This is a biggie for me. Once I take my mind off of making healthy choices, it is all down hill. Social media is a great way to help you focus on creating a healthy lifestyle. On Pinterest, I create health related boards. I have some boards that focus on clean eating or tasty lower calorie recipes. Others focus on fitness and how I can get my butt in gear. I pin to them just about everyday.  Doing this helps Photo: Michael Dales https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nd/2.0/legalcodeme focus on my health goals. On my Instagram account, I follow other people who are trying to achieve their health goals. It’s inspiring to see so many great before and after pictures. I know that if they can do it, I can do it too! On Facebook, I am part of a health accountability group.  It is a place for me to celebrate my victories with good eating and exercise, and share my downfalls too. God’s word says,

“So a man thinketh, so is he.” Proverbs 23:7

Keeping your thoughts focused on healthy choices, improves your chances of making healthy choices and you in turn become healthy.

Renew your mind with God’s word. 

This journey is hard. Unless you have had a weight problem, you can’t quite wrap your mind around how hard it is. I have tried time and time again to lose weight without God but the successes has never been long-lasting. There is no true success without putting God at the center of this battle. In Romans 12:2 Paul tell us to be transformed by the renewing of our mind. So each day, I get up and praise Him for yesterday and ask Him to help me through today and I read my weight loss devotional.You can check it out in my favorites by following this link. It has been one of the best purchases. It is truly showing me how to apply God’s word to weight loss. Yes, God cares about your weight!Photo: David Woo https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nd/2.0/legalcode I encourage you to buy this devotional or one that is similar. Spend time studying God’s word and asking Him how you can specifically apply the Word to your life. Renewing my mind has helped me make better choices. Am I perfect? I am not even close.

My Prayer

Father God, help me to discipline my body by first helping me to discipline my mind. I want to be qualified when I talk about living a healthy lifestyle. Help me with the daily choices that I make. I want to honor you in all that I do and say. In Jesus Name, I ask and pray. Amen.

What do you do to help you stick to your healthy lifestyle? I welcome your tips!

Grace Covers the Big Bag of Lays I Ate Today- Day 5

Photo: Grace of God https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nd/2.0/legalcodeI am struggling y’all. I am not perfect in my God life or weight loss journey. There are situations that just throw me for a loop. So here I am writing about it, in hopes that it will help me and someone else.  I am dealing with all that stress that comes with starting a new school year. My daughter is taking evening classes and that means lots of babysitting my  two year old granddaughter.  And it’s almost time of the month. TMI but I am just trying to be real. This morning, instead of a healthy breakfast, I ate leftover wings and a small bag of chips. First of all, those chips should not even be in the house. I bought them because they were the new flavored Lays and I wanted to try them out. I bought them agains my better judgement. I could be the poster child for Lays because I cannot eat just one!

After my “breakfast of champions”, I shut all my electronic devices off and purposefully dig into today’s devotion. I was craving God’s peace.

“Sin is no longer your master, for you are no longer subject to the law, which enslaves you to sin. Instead, you are free by God’s grace.”  Romans 6:14

As Christians, we hear the word Grace thrown around all the time. But as I read this scripture, I began to think about whether  I have a true understanding of the word Grace.  When I looked up the word grace Merriam-Webster says that it is-the free unmerited favor of God.  Through God’s Grace, I can be free from sin and instead, have his overgenerouspreferential treatment.  That is so powerful! Now, I need to live in that.

I am not going to condemn myself for eating junk this morning. Believe me, I want to. I have. But God’s Grace covers all-even my imperfect eating.  It is up to me to stand on His Word and believe that “I can live a healthy life through Christ who strengthens me.” (Philippians 4:13)  Food does not have to be my master during stressful times.  I have to turn to God and allow him to cover me with his overgenerous, preferential treatment.  This is definitely going on a sticky note on my bathroom mirror so that I can get this in my heart.

Favorite Quote from Today

“The body you have now is just a snapshot of the choices you made in the past. The choices you make now will determine the body in which you will live in the future.”

-Kimberly Taylor-The Weight Loss Scriptures: 30-Day Daily Devotional for Weight Loss

My Prayer

Thank you God for your Grace. Help me to forgive myself for my past mistakes and current food imperfections. Remind me that condemnation doesn’t have a place in my life. I thank you that your Grace covers all.  In Jesus name. Amen.

I am thankful for this devotional on weight loss from Kimberly Taylor.  Join me.