Who’s there?

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There is a battle for your heart. For your faith. For your mind. For your soul. For your purpose. The pursuit is relentless.

The Bible tells us to guard our hearts because it determines the direction of our lives. Our hearts are fragile so we must be good stewards of what we allow to affect it.

It’s like our front door of our house. Do we allow just anyone in? No. I have a ring doorbell that allows me to see who is at my front door. I don’t answer the door if I don’t know who they are. I used to feel bad if I didn’t at least hear them out. After learning the hard way I refuse to do that again.

We have to be diligent to not keep the good out, but to keep harm out. Yes, there will be times we will get hurt and not expect it, but what about allowing those who hurt you back in over and over again? Knowing something or someone is harmful is a benefit because now you can choose whether to allow it in or not.

Choose wisely my friends. Ask Jesus for wisdom and discernment. Read His word. Pray. Cause when the lies, fear, doubts, and threats of the enemy come knocking you’ll know better than to open the door. ❤️

Ponder It

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I recall many moments a sweet friend would give me an encouraging word and tell me to “ponder it.” She would always use that word…ponder. I had to look it up because it’s not a word I had ever used. The definition is to think or consider especially quietly, soberly, and deeply. Honestly, I was hesitant because quiet is not my style. Being an external processor I talk things out. My friend on the other hand is the epitome of quiet. She would say very little, but when she spoke you listened. Was I not suppose to talk about the things God has told me?

I’ve come to learn what she meant. What quiet looks like on the inside. How to process in the quietness of Gods presence. How to take what the Lord spoke and let it simmer in my heart like soup cooking over a low flame. Allowing time for the full flavor of it to get down deep where my heart becomes convinced. Considering the words before I speak them knowing how powerful they are. That both life and death are an option by what I speak to myself. Guarding the door of my heart carefully as to not let thieves come in and rob me of the truth.

I’ve come to learn there is a time for everything. A time to speak and a time to listen. I pray you hear me today and consider what the Lord has spoke to you. Keep the words close. Don’t allow others to bring their thoughts before you have your own. Don’t let the dream or vision get cloudy or muddied by opinions. Hold close to your heart what the Lord said and consider it a secret until the appointed time. Just like Mary and my friend Beth, believe in Him who has promised and it will come to pass. ❤️

Comfort and Joy

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The other day I woke up singing “oh tidings of comfort and joy” and for some reason it hasn’t left my heart as it’s still singing in me. I was sure there was a reason so I started to dig a little deeper.

“Then young women will dance and be glad, young men and old as well. I will turn their mourning into gladness; I will give them comfort and joy instead of sorrow.” Jeremiah 31:13 NIV

The verse speaks of what God will give us in place of something else. He is so good at that. He offers us what only he can give for what has impaired our hope. Our joy. Our healing. Our restoration. Our peace. Our mourning and sorrow can be felt by Him. Our pain is his pain. Our sorrow is his sorrow. He knows all to well the ache of the human heart in times of suffering. He promises to deliver and comfort us from the hand of things stronger than us. Anxiety. Grief. Disappointment. Pain and even death. God is the only one who could do a trade like that. This is what the angel spoke of “Fear not: for, behold, I bring you good tidings of great joy, which shall be to all people. You and I are apart of “all” people.

He will give us comfort AND joy. I wrestled with this because of the grief in my heart lately. I desperately needed something and he saw fit to bring me both. The song in my heart confirmed it. He was saying “I will do this for you. I see, hear, and know you. My hands are stronger than the ones that threaten and consume you. I am Immanuel, God with you. Your comforter. Your Father. Your peace. Your joy.”

I don’t know where your heart is today, but I do know Gods heart towards you. It’s full of love, grace, mercy, comfort, and joy. He’s more than enough to fill the empty and broken places in you. This Christmas is more than the tangible gifts, it’s about the intangible that will heal and bless your soul. What a gift!

Merry Christmas from our home to yours!

Peace over you and yours,

Emilie ❤️

Did You Know?

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Do you know how loved you are? Not the subjective conditional love that can’t make up its mind from one moment to the next. I’m talking about the I died for you kind of love. The love that fights for you. Believes in you. Protects you. Sees the best in you. A no matter what comes I’m not going anywhere love. If you know Jesus you know he IS this love. The love that sees you and knows you and still went to the cross for you. No one loves like Jesus. His love sets you free. His love is unconditional. We search and desire for someone to love us like this. Truth is…only Jesus could love this flawlessly. Us humans even on our best day will fail the ones we love, but His love never fails. Don’t believe the lie that you’re unloveable or hard to love. You, my love, were created out of love, to be loved, and to share this love. What a lovely truth! ❤️

John 15:13. Greater love has no one than this, that someone lay down his life for his friends.

Can We Be Honest?

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Telling the truth was always hard for me. It’s not like I was lying. In fact, I wasn’t saying anything at all. Being taught to not speak of the truth impaired my ability to process. To heal. I became numb to pain that was so harmful to my soul I couldn’t recognize how hurt I really was. Before you can live a life of truth you must acknowledge what aches in you. Learning to sit with yourself and allow the truth to stir in you. That is the discovery that changes everything. The Lord will not allow us to walk around numb forever. There will come a moment when it’s just you and Him and all the funk within you and his love collide. It’s a meeting of the heart, mind, and soul. Many of us will run till we die to try and avoid what hurts. Can I give you some momma advice? Stop running away from you. You will always be where you are. Good thing is, Jesus will always be ready to listen. His pursuit of you and your heart will never end. Are you ready to know the truth that sets you free? His name is Jesus. He is relentless about seeing you whole. Free from deep rooted sorrow and neglect. It won’t happen overnight. This is the Lords doing. He knows what we can handle. He’s gentle. Patient. Kind. Forgiving. He’s everything we don’t know how to be to ourselves. I pray you take a step closer to Jesus today. That you be honest with yourself and let him come and show you how to be whole. You’ll never regret it, I promise you.

Love, Em ❤️

Change of Scenery

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I remember it so well, crossing the California border headed to Texas. I had no idea what God had in store for us. All I knew was it was gonna be good…eventually. We saw so much potential and possibilities but never realized the journey ahead was for healing. We had so much toxic surrounding us. Every where we went it was there. Unhealthy relationships. Broken dreams. Messed up mind sets. Damaged trust. In Gods grace and mercy he took us to a safe place to heal. To find him, again. To find each other, again. To find ourselves, perhaps for the first time. I love our story of how God redeems everything if we let him. We must yield to his careful hands to take what’s toxic and broken and turn it into something healthy and whole. Only he can do it. Don’t resist his tugging you away. Isolation can be hard as we all have seen in recent days. He has to take you aside and silence the noise for you to hear him speak truth. Life. Healing. Into EVERY broken place. You are safe there. It will hurt, but you’ll heal. I realized after all these years that he was preparing us for the hardest journey we’d ever face. We needed to be emotionally whole to deal with the physical torment of cancer ahead. I’m so glad we said yes. I promise you’ll never regret the change of scenery that healing offers. Go my friend and be healed. ❤️

One Day at a Time

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The other day my alarm went off and panic set in. I was afraid of what the day would bring. Am I enough to handle it, whatever it is? As I laid there I felt this reassuring tug and the words “you got through Mike’s cancer, you can get through this.”

We try to tackle life all at once. We want the blue prints. The plan. And when we don’t have it we go bonkers with anxiety, stress and frustration.

As days go by and situations develop in ways we didn’t see coming we need more grace to live one day at a time. The unknowns of life. The anxiety of what needs to be done. The fear of ifs. The torment of how. Only Jesus can bring relief, peace, and help.

The enemy wants and needs you to believe that YOU have to figure it all out….today…right now. That my friends is a lie! Gods word says…So don’t worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will bring its own worries. Today’s trouble is enough for today. {Matthew 6:34} God is our refuge and strength, A very present help in trouble. {Psalm 46:1}

We may not have it all figured out and guess what we don’t need to. Can we be ok with that? Can we trust that Jesus has gone before us and will lead us into victory? Can we believe that his heart is for us even in all things?

My hope today is that yes, we can! We can be trusting, hopeful, and confident that we are not alone or without help. We can rest that one day at a time the Lord will equip us. Lead us. Protect us. We are in good hands friends.

Praying for y’all ❤️

Emilie

Won’t He Do It Again?

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Current trials can blind us to the history we have with Jesus. If he has done it once, won’t he do it again? I was reminded again {sometimes we need a spiritual smack} of how far the Lord has brought me and what he has “already” done in my life. A moment of reflection brought me to tears as I was asked “Don’t you remember Em?” Yes Lord, I remember how many times you picked me up and mended this broken heart of mine. I remember every time you miraculously met a need. I remember the moments you divinely guided me in the right direction. I remember how you rescued me from myself. Lord, I remember.  Go back today and be reminded of all the Lord has done. Speak of it. Tell someone. Encourage yourself and others with the proof of his faithfulness. Won’t he do it again? Yes, my friends, he will!

Blessings,

Em ❤️

Going Higher

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I have heard it said that “God will not give us more then we can handle.” I disagree. There have been so many moments that l could not handle what I was going through. But this did not mean that God couldn’t handle it.

All throughout scripture people have cried out in desperation. Faint at heart. Crushed. Broken. Beyond their capabilities of handling their situation. Sound familiar? Their example shows me where they went…higher…to God.

In our weakness we are told to lean, put all our weight upon the Lord. He is careful to hold us through the trial. His mercy, compassion, and love shields us in ways we can’t see. The presence of trials is not the absence of Gods mercy. Today, rather than looking at my pain I will look to the one who can alleviate it. The healer. Sustainer. All faithful One. I will go higher.

Hear my cry, O God, listen to my prayer; from the end of the earth I call to you when my heart is faint. Lead me to the rock that is higher than I, for you have been my refuge, a strong tower against the enemy. – Psalm 61:1-3

Blessings,

Em 😊

Forgiveness 

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Forgiveness.

That’s a tough subject for many, especially when you’ve been deeply hurt. A big part of my story revolved around the wrong definition of what forgiveness meant. Questions led to fear and that fear led to beating myself up over and over again unknowingly leaving the door open to more hurt. 

What is forgiveness? 

To make a choice to pardon or release someone based on a wrong they did…that’s forgiveness. It’s doesn’t at all mean that the wrong was justified or that it never happened. Some think that to forgive is to admit that what someone did wasn’t wrong. That you, the one hurt, doesn’t have a reason to be hurt or offended. That they, the offender, is off the hook. Wrong! There are consequences, but we are not always the one to determine what those are. It is NOT a get out of jail free card for them…it’s for you. To be free from anger, resentment, bitterness, and pain. It’s a gift you give yourself. 

I was taught that just so long as they said “sorry” that was enough. Well, that’s not enough for me and I found that’s not enough for God either. He requires more, a godly sorrow that leads to repentance and a change of heart and actions. 

“For the kind of sorrow God wants us to experience leads us away from sin and results in salvation. There’s no regret for that kind of sorrow. But worldly sorrow, which lacks repentance, results in spiritual death. Just see what this godly sorrow produced in you! Such earnestness, such concern to clear yourselves, such indignation, such alarm, such longing to see me, such zeal, and such a readiness to punish wrong. You showed that you have done everything necessary to make things right.” ‭‭2 Corinthians‬ ‭7:10-11‬ ‭NLT‬‬

Proof is what I like to call it. How many times have you asked for forgiveness and turned around and did the same thing again? Or, someone has said sorry only to turn around and repeat their behavior? We must live by Gods standard, especially if we hold others to them. 

What isn’t forgiveness? 

Forgiveness is not shoving things under the carpet. Forgiveness is not forgetting it ever happened. That’s denial and avoidance. Doing this hides us from the truth and closing the door on our healing. Pain left unhealed blinds us to our future. We can’t move forward because we are always looking back. 

Forgiveness doesn’t have to establish a relationship. This is where so many people have it wrong. They think to forgive is to allow that someone back in your life. In some cases this will happen and relationships can be restored. Sometimes, relationships are altered and require strict boundaries, if not a temporary or permanent separation. Take abuse for example. Should someone who is being abused allow the abuser access to them just because they apologized? Or should there be boundaries that limit relationship and access until a pattern of sincerity and changed behavior is proven? 

Sadly, so many of us don’t know how to forgive and begin the process of healing because we have been misinformed. 

Forgiveness is a choice. Gods word tells us to forgive so that we can be forgiven. 

“If you forgive those who sin against you, your heavenly Father will forgive you. But if you refuse to forgive others, your Father will not forgive your sins.” ‭‭Matthew‬ ‭6:14-15‬ ‭NLT‬‬

Although we may never do what someone has done to us we are not perfect. We too, are human. Imperfect. It’s a process. We are a process. It took me a moment to forgive and years to walk out the process of healing. It took a moment to ask for forgiveness, but time to learn a new way. This is a process that if we can walk it out no matter the pain, we can be free, eventually.  Free from the stains we caused and free from the stains that others have left behind. 

I don’t pretend to have it all together. Many days I have to remind myself that it takes time. Being quick to forgive is hard, but freeing. Knowing that I need Gods forgiveness keeps my heart pliable to truth…Gods truth. 

I pray Gods truth would be louder than our past hurts, lies, and misunderstandings. My desire is that we can move forward and experience healing, healing that leads to freedom. Freedom that helps us set others free! 

Em ❤️