Encouragement, Spiritual Growth, Triathlon Training

7th anniversary part A

Worship at word of life North  was off the charts with God’s presence. The last song they sang was The Stand. What’s so interesting about this is that that song, was my theme song, exactly 7 years ago today when I raced in the 70.3 triathlon world championships. Getting to that championship is a whole testimony in itself. Today, God showed me a deeper layer of that experience. When he told me to go and qualify to get to World Championships – I chose to believe (nothing in my speed as a triathlete indicated I’d get there). Then, I chose to train to qualify. Then, despite finishing poorly at the race I picked to qualify at, I chose to believe and went to the banquet to get my qualification “ticket” to world championships (despite finishing 18th in my age group that day, I got 1 of I think 5 spots to go to world championships b/c others decided to not go). Then, I chose to train like a world champion during the 4 months between qualifying and racing. He provided everything I needed. My only contributions were to believe and to make that belief into action.
Before racing world championships, I became very sick. As I traveled to Florida, I was sick. The day of the race I didn’t feel my best but I chose to determine to race my best. The entire 6 hours and 4 minutes of the race were absolute misery of nausea and diarrhea. But I chose to not quit. I determined early on when I realized that this wasn’t going to be pretty, or fast or fun. I chose to finish, even  if I were the last one to finish.
The Lord showed me this morning as we sang The Stand, that it is in our believing and choosing actions that support the belief that we STAND. He showed me that He has put in me a huge about of tenacity and perseverance. He showed me that when we are willing to let Him get the glory (and trust me…as an athlete nothing about my times to qualify or on WC race day brought me glory and with intention I prayed to race for His glory and not mine.) that He would bring His glory through me. Then, He showed me that these past 7 years, which have been HARD, have been  “training and race” days too and that I’ve been tenacious and persevered and He is pleased with me. Oh transformation and working with God can be ugly and messy and many mistakes can be made…but God…brings us through and works it all out for good.
He then asked me, Daughter, are you willing to keep “training and racing” with your life for my glory? I’ve told you things that will be and I know you believe them. You know you can’t accomplish these things on your own. Are you believing as passionately as you did? Are your actions supporting that belief? Are you walking tall in confidence, hope and expectation of my provision for you like you did 7 years ago? The past 7 years have been much preparation..but now, I want you to commit more fully to believing and acting on that belief. I’m calling you UP to a higher faith, a greater expectation..and it’s all for my glory! Remember a few years ago when I whispered to you, “don’t do this for me…do this with me”?  Will you do this with Me?  With all my heart I want to do this with you!! Are you in daughter?
Oh Lord, what can I say? What can I do..but offer my heart dear God only to you. I’ll stand with arms high and heart abandoned to the one who gave it all. I’ll stand, my soul Lord to you surrendered. All I am is yours. All I am is yours. I’ll stand.
Yes, Lord, the answer is Yes. Let’s do this together.  Let’s go to the next level for your glory. Soli Deo Gloria. Soli Deo Gloria.
here are links to the 2 blogs I wrote about the 2010 World Championships if you are interested: https://wp.me/pTgvZ-1f, https://wp.me/pTgvZ-1a,
Encouragement, Spiritual Growth

From the heart – 3 things I’m learning

whiteboard-wallpaper-hd-resolution-3i5I’m going to just jump right in with this blog.  Growth with God for me seems to come in spurts and after about 7-8 months of silence, the teaching and lessons and circumstances to practice the lessons are coming in fast.  Here’s 3 things I’m learning that I hope will help you as you grow closer to Jesus each day.

  1.  Prayer is a conversation.  I’ve heard this for years and honestly prayer for me has been me talking to God.  And after I’m done I say “Thank you Lord, Amen.” And then, I go on with life.  Recently, I’ve was inspired to pray a different way.  I went to have quiet time to pray over a specific circumstance that I needed direction on and an answer to – time was of the essence.  So, I got on my knees and prayed something like this, “Lord, you know all things – you know both sides.  I’m wiping all my thoughts and everything off the whiteboard of this circumstance.  I am completely open.  Help me to see it your way and direct me to the right decision that is in agreement with your way.”  When I handed the Lord a “whiteboard” for this – He handed me a clear understanding and a clear directive to take action on.  Since then, I’m all about being a whiteboard and letting the Sovereign Lord tell me.  There is an immense clarity, confidence and peace that comes from this approach – not the least of which is listening instead of just talking. Sometimes we do need to be heard and to bear our soul but more often than not we need to just come humbly and say, “what do I do?” and then when He tells us do it.
  2. “With”ness – it’s a new word I created – withness.  It’s not a typo.  Too often, as Christ followers we are compelled to “serve”, to do for Christ to be His hands and feet.  In fact, many of us simply wear ourselves out in busyness – “holy” busyness.  But, it is through our withness that we will naturally become a witness.  Jesus wants us to BE WITH HIM.  To simply spend time apart from everything else and BE WITH HIM.  When we are filled with withness, we can truly, naturally and easily be a witness.
  3. Through the eyes of the Lion – this concept is really a few blogs long and was inspired by the book of the same name written by Levi Lusko.   Jesus is the Lion of Judah.  The Lion has dominion (rule, power) in his territory.  Jesus is also Emmanuel – God with us.  In fact He is IN you.  So, look out at everything and learn to see through the eyes of the lion.  What does the Lion see?  A lion is calm, confident, sure of his position and his power.  Is this how you see through your eyes?  Or is it through fear and doubt and emotion? Be confident of your lion within.  Trust the lion. Don’t trust what you see, trust what He sees.  Ask to see what he sees and ask him what to do.  Let the lion lead. There’s more to this…and I’ll blog on it when it has marinated and percolated..but..think on it and of course, check out Levi’s book, Through the eyes of the Lion.  It is a worthy read.

May God bless you and show you truth.

Encouragement, Spiritual Growth

A rising tide lifts all ships

tsunamiI wrote not long ago about a Tsunami and how it rolls in off shore and as it’s rolls towards shore, things are changing profoundly. Lately, I just keep thinking over and over a rising tide lifts all ships.  The past couple of weeks, God has used Exodus 14 and Psalms 22 to show me things about deliverance, victory and true humility.  Tonight, I went to sleep and this statement woke me up and began to bring these things together:  God can’t/ won’t change our circumstances until we see them through eyes of faith. So here’s what I believe God is saying to His people right now.
I can’t and won’t change your circumstances until you begin to see them through eyes of faith.
Something has you in it’s grip because of circumstances I’ve permitted and you are allowing “it” to keep it’s grip on you.You are actually perpetuating it’s grip on you through one of two ways:
Pride which is independence or Doubt which is lack of trust in me.
I am encouraging you strongly that as you follow the pattern in Psalms 22 and enthrone me in praises and bow before me you will begin to work with me as I am working for you.  Until you place yourself in TRUE HUMILITY through enthroning me in praise and bowing before me you will remain gripped by these circumstances.
The danger is that right now, in the spiritual realm you don’t have time to hang on.  There is an unusual sense of urgency right now that I can’t fully share with you.   So please let go of the pride, let go of the doubt and work with me as I work for you!!
There is a choice you need to make regarding something very specific – say NO to your will and YIELD to my will.  This will begin to place you in TRUE HUMILITY before me.  Be brave and just decide to do this.  I John 2:15-17 reminds you of the importance of  saying NO and letting  go!
When you do, I can release my Royal Power on your behalf.
A Tsunami is rumbling off shore in the distance and continues to roll in.  The tide will rise.  You really don’t want to miss this opportunity, this timing.  Destiny can be slippery and sometimes the cost of not dropping something, of not getting in TRUE HUMILITY  will be FAR GREATER than you know.  Yield to me NOW and ask to see with your eyes of Faith.
Need me because this is your greatest asset and I long to HELP you.
Trust me because this is your greatest strength and I am fighting  FOR you.
Stay close to me because I am constantly WITH you.
Please take these circumstances that you are focused on and put them in your peripheral view.  Focus on where I am taking you.  These circumstances will be used to transform you and you will be given victory when you choose TRUE HUMILITY.  The transformation and deliverance and victory get delayed as does your destiny when you keep the circumstances in your focus and not your periphery.  Put these problems in your peripheral view and focus on what I’ve already shown you and told you – focus on your destiny not your circumstances.
You have in your hand what I want to use to bring you in to your destiny.  You have in your hand your victory.  Use it.  You’ve got it!
Stop wrestling with your circumstances.
Ignore these silly speed bumps you get focused on that are irrelevant.
Focus on what I’ve told you and focus on your destiny.
Get serious because the time is NOW.
prayer-on-my-knees4
I’m not parting the sea this time.  The Tsunami is rolling in and the waters will rise.  Enthrone me in your praise, bow before me and yield your will to mine and I will release Royal Power on your behalf and you will safely ride this rising tide in a ship and I will bring you to your destiny and you will be safe from the impending destruction this Tsunami will bring when it hits shore.
Don’t delay ok?  I want you to fulfill your destiny.  I designed it especially for you! Your destiny embodies my eternal purposes and dreams that I have anointed and appointed and planned to fulfill through you.  I am with you. Are you with me? Don’t miss your destiny by continuing to wrestle with your circumstances – release that pride, kill that doubt and work with me as I work for you!!  Then you will be on MY rising tide that lifts all ships!!
Hebrews 12:1,2
Let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles and let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us.  We do this my keeping our eyes on Jesus, the CHAMPION who initiates and perfects our faith. Because of the JOY awaiting him, he endured the cross, disregarding it’s shame.  Now, he is seated in the place of honor beside God’s throne.
2 Corinthians 12:9
Each time he said, my GRACE is ALL you need.  My POWER works best in weakness.  So, no I am GLAD to boast about my weaknesses so that the POWER of Christ can work through me.
Encouragement

A super quick short post about time

The Rolling Stoimages-1nes sing, “Time is on my side, yes it is.  Time is on my side, yes it is.” Now, Mick is singing about a girl coming back to him.  But, I want to take a different twist.

Time IS on our side, when we invest our time wisely.

Newton’s third law says, “For everything there is an equal and opposite reaction.” Let me again, take a twist.

Time is NOT on our side.  When we waste our time and squander our time we can not get that time back.  It is gone, gone, gone.

I will bravely and boldly say that never in the history of humanity have we had more distractions and more opportunities to simply waste our time.

We often cry we wish we had more time.  But, do we really need more time or do we just need to spend that time with greater intention and focus?

I don’t have time to_______.

You fill in the blank.

Here’s a sobering statistic.

According to the A.C. Nielsen Co., the average American watches more than 4 hours of TV each day (or 28 hours/week, or 2 months of nonstop TVwatching per year). In a 65-year life, that person will have spent 9 years glued to the tube.

And that is just TV.  28 hours per week. 28.

Let’s put more time ON our side.  What about exchanging just 30 minutes/5 days per week from our various “screens” and putting that time towards something that we falsely don’t believe we have time for?

Yes, time IS on our side when we redirect it towards the important and don’t let it just slip through our proverbial hands.

Urgent-vs-Important.indd
Advice from the bestseller The 7 habits of highly effective people.
Encouragement, Spiritual Growth, Uncategorized

Follow your heart’s GPS

imagesPossibility. Potential. Exploration.

You may want to look up the definitions of these three powerful words!
What’s possible? How much more is possible if our response to the seemingly impossible were open instead of closed? How many explorations whether scientific, geographical or spiritual would not have occurred if someone hadn’t first considered the possibility?
How often do we shut down possibility without first exploring? Or how often do we shut down possibility and potential by not being willing to openly explore and do the work of exploration? How many times have we allowed people to limit possibility or at best narrow our possibility into what seems probable or likely to them? How many times have we shut down someone else’s potential or possibility down by pointing out the “reasons” it would not be possible?
Yet, historically speaking, we are the benefactors of others willingness to consider possibility and their determination to explore it at often great cost and sacrifice?
So, if the potential of possibility is so great why do we not risk exploration of it? Why do we shy away from potential and possibility as if they were deadly or dangerous?
Fear.
Fear of failure.
Fear of wasting time (don’t even get me started. How much TV do we watch? Facebook do we scroll through? How many times a day does one of your devices beep to give you an “Important” notification)
Fear of looking crazy and our lives don’t look like the typical American life.
Fear of the unknown.
Fear of risking it “all”. What is “all”anyway? Safety? Security? We Americans place way too high a value on security. Yet, we are founded by huge risk takers and rooted on possibility, potential and exploration!!
I watched a video on how to organize information to write a book, screenplay or other large body of written work. The guy said something that hit me square between the eyes and stabbed my heart. He said, he writes to affect change in this world! Whoa! Crazy talk right there huh? He’s JUST a guy…like I’m just a woman. But, he sees possibility, he believes in potential and he’s using his talent, time and resources to create work that presents these ideas to others. If he didn’t and merely talked about it over coffee with a friend….how could change ever become possible?
So, this guys “crazy” talk affected me. My writing project, that has taken me nearly two years to really start and work on in any significant way, was held up by fear.  Yet, it was birthed out of passion to help others! I hadn’t seen the depth of this passion as clearly as I did while I watched that video. The fire of possibility was lit!
So, what’s in your heart? What possibility do you push down and instead get up everyday, go to work, buy new clothes, eat out and watch tv instead of doing? Our comfort and wealth as a society has made us soft and satisfied. Wake up! Look deep inside…there is so much really, really wrong all around us!! What possibility do you see? Are you willing to explore its potential? Are you willing to give it a chance? Are you willing to dare? Are you willing to risk? Are you willing to contribute in any way, large or small to the potential and possibility in each and everyone of us?
I bought a bracelet, nearly 20 years ago while on a buying trip in New York. Inscribed in French, it translated says: we must live not merely exist.
Me? I realized my heart and what I want to say and it’s worth the time, risk, focus and investment…it’s taken me a lot of exits off the freeway to finally decide to follow the God given GPS directions deep in my heart without fear and without diversion and distraction. (Well, I’m getting better at recognizing diversions and distractions…)
When I finish this writing project, if I am the only one to benefit and I am changed because of it and have more to give others, it’ll have been worth it. If, a few people read it, great. If it gets published, even better. If it becomes a good seller or best seller, stupendous. But the outcome isn’t my focus. The “success” of the project will be in the completion of the project. My focus is on the completion and the outcome is in Gods hands. Affecting even one person through your exploration of possibility and potential is worth it! Sometimes God gives us this burn in our heart and He is aiming at just one person. Sometimes He is aiming for a hundred, or a million, or an entire generation, or many future generations.  Sometimes, He is looking to affect all of humanity for all of eternity; like He did through Jesus!  It’s not how “big”…don’t get hung up there. Follow your heart’s GPS, follow Gods voice…when these two things merge great stuff happens!
Stop. Get quiet. Listen to your heart. Listen for Gods voice. Is there a possibility and potential you perhaps should take more seriously? Is there at the very least some exploration you should do because it is at least worthy of some exploration? Go ahead, do it! Do it for all of us. Do it for you. Do it for the one, or the hundred or the entire generation.
 Is there someone around you that believes in possibility, potential and exploration? Support them! Don’t quietly think, that’s stupid or that’ll never work or that won’t happen or that’s too risky.  Speak life into it! What’s the worst that can happen? Yeah, that what I thought…the worst really isn’t that bad and a small price indeed to pay in the seeking of possibility and potential via exploration! Be there for them..it may take a few failures…remember, sometimes the price is high!
I believe that Gods voice is very, very clear if we listen! If God is breathing a dream in you, a vision of possibility…..pay attention! Contribute!!
Not sure you know Gods voice? I have 2 suggestions:
1.  Start reading the Bible daily with pen and paper handy and listen.
2. Pick up a killer book by Priscilla Shirer called Discerning the Voice of God.
Let’s stop existing and live up to our God created, God inspired potential and purpose! Explore,the possibility…follow it…see where God leads!