Monday, December 24, 2012

'Tis The Season!

Throughout the year, people make lists of what they want this Christmas. All hoping for the special gift they've had their eye on. Whether it's the latest piece of technology or something small, everyone is hopeful that on Christmas morning it will be waiting for them under the tree. Kids try to be on their best behavior so Santa will come. And parents remind their kids to behave or else he wont. 

Is this the real meaning of Christmas? Waking up to find presents with your name on them. Things you probably don't even need. No, it's not. The real meaning of Christmas is to celebrate the birth of our Lord Jesus Christ. 

Luke 2:10-11- "The angel of the Lord said to them, "Do not be afraid. For I bring you good news that will cause great joy for all people. Today in the town of David a Savior has been born to you; He is the Messiah, The Lord."

Now, this may be confusing to some. We're not just celebrating the day that Jesus was born, but we're celebrating the life He lived and also what His life meant.

John 3:16- "For God so loved the that He gave His one and only son, that whoever believes in Him shall not perish but have eternal life."

Luke 10:9- "For the son of man came to seek and to save the lost."

God gave His only son Jesus to come down to earth in the most humbling way, to live among sinners and thieves that betray Him everyday, and still loves us enough to die on the cross to save us from that sin. 
Now, no matter if you receive the gift you've been wanting this year or not. There will always be something new that comes out, something else you're going to want. Something or someone to fill that void in your life.  But I'm telling you now, nothing this earth can bring you will fill that emptiness in your life. There is only one gift that will fill that void. God's free gift of salvation. 

Romans 6:23- "For the wages of sin is death but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus."

Romans 10:9- "If you confess with your mouth  'Jesus is Lord' and believe in heart God raised him from the dead you will be saved."

This Christmas season I challenge you to not only remember the true meaning of Christmas, but to also evaluate if you have accepted the most precious gift of all.

Merry Christmas <3


Monday, November 19, 2012

When Everything Goes Wrong.

We've all had moments when everything that seems to be going right, goes wrong. Lately, I've had a lot of them. A lot of let downs, a lot of screw ups, and a lot of wondering how I can fix things. Things that meant the world to me, somehow just disappeared. This really sent me through a time where I was trying to figure out what I can do to change the situation. How can I get it the way I want. People kept telling me, God has a plan through all of the chaos, but I still was holding on to the thought that it was my fault and I can fix this somehow. It consumed my thoughts constantly and became a distraction from my relationship with Christ. I was so focused on how I could fix the situation, that instead of giving it to Christ, I took complete control. I lost sight of the promises that He gives to each of us.

"Come to Me, all who weary and burdened, and I will give you rest." -Matthew 11:28
"Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let you requests be made known to God. And the peace of God, which surpasses all comprehension, shall guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus. Finally, brethren, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, what ever is of good repute, if here is any excellence and if anything worthy of praise, let your mind dwell on these things." -Philippians 4:6-8
"For I consider that the sufferings of this present time are not worthy to be compared with the glory that is to be revealed to us." -Romans 8:18
"For I know the plans I have for you, declares the Lord, plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you a hope and a future." -Jeremiah 29:11

Over and over, God reminds us that He will be there in times of trouble. That if we surrender to Him, He will provide for us all we need.  I've heard this my whole life growing up in church, but I never really experienced this in my own life. I finally realized I can't fix my problems by myself and I need Christ to lead me through this time of struggle.

 I don't know what God has for my life, but I know it's WAY better than I could ever dream. He knows me better than I know myself, so why not give control to Him? Whatever He has for me, I know it will be what is best for me, even if it's not what I want. 

"Surely God is my help; the Lord is the one who sustains me." -Psalms 54:4


Thursday, April 19, 2012

Woman at the Well.

This video is a modern interpretation of the woman at the well from John 4:1-42. If you've never read this, I encourage you do to so. 

"To be known is to be loved, and to be loved is to be known. And you know me."
This passage from the Bible is about a prostitute getting water from a well and Jesus asking her for a drink. 
This is just one example of how much Jesus cares for EVERYONE. Even the worst people that ever lived. He loves every last one of them. We as Christians need to have this woman's willingness to put ourselves out there to share the good news of Jesus! We need to share how He loves and cares for everyone, no matter what the cost. 


Sunday, April 8, 2012

In Christ Alone.

In Christ alone, my hope is found.
He is my light, my strength, my song.
This Cornerstone, this solid ground,
firm through the fiercest drought and storm.
What heights of love, what depths of peace.
When fears are stilled, when striving cease.
My comforter, my All in All.
Here in the love of Christ I stand.

In Christ alone, who took on flesh.
Fullness of God in helpless babe.
This gift of love and righteousness,
scorned by the ones He came to save.
'til on that cross, as Jesus died,
the wrath of God was satisfied.
For every sin, on Him was laid. 
Here in the death of Christ I live.

There in the ground, His body lay.
Light of the world by darkness slain.
Then bursting forth, in glorious day,
up from the grave He rose again!
and as He stands in victory,
sin's curse has lost it's grip on me.
For I am His, and He is mine.
Bought with the precious blood of Christ.

No guilt in life, no fear in death.
This is the power of Christ in me.
From life's first cry, to final breath,
Jesus commands my destiny.
No power of hell, no scheme of man, 
can ever pluck me from His hand!
'til He returns or calls me home,
here in the power of Christ I live. 

This song really spoke to me this past few years, and really hit me today. What I, and many others need to remember is what He did on the cross for us, what He did three days later, what He does for us, and what He will do for us. And to always, always, live in the power of Christ. 


Monday, March 26, 2012

To all the girls.

According to the Real Girls, Real Pressure National Study,
  • 7 in 10 girls believe they are not good enough or do not measure up in some way including their looks, performance in school, and relationships with friends and family members. 
  • 62% of girls are insecure about themselves.
  • 75% of girls with low self-esteem report engaging in negative activities such as, eating disorders, cutting, smoking, and drinking when feeling bad about themselves.
  • 25% of teen girls with low self-esteem purposefully injure or cut themselves.
  • 25% of teen girls with low self-esteem have eating disorders (starving themselves, refusing to eat, overeating, throwing up, bulimia)
In everyday life, there comes a point when girls feel like the whole world is judging them - Criticizing every detail.  A time where they feel like no one will ever love them because of how they look or act. The world is telling girls they aren't skinny enough, or pretty enough, or sexy enough to ever mean anything to anyone. Girls see the air-brushed, Photoshop-ed, celebrities in magazines and on TV and create a negative image of themselves. This negative way of life is so bad, the celebrities themselves even feel the pressure to be perfect. With most all of them acting in negatively because of it.

Every girl has felt this pressure, whether it's in the little things (not feeling good about themselves) or the big things (cutting, gagging, ect.). Why? Society is telling us that in order to be accepted, we have to look like supermodels. So, girls often turn to cutting or gagging themselves to be accepted. Not realizing how messed up this view point is or not realizing God created them the way He wants them to be. Beautiful and perfect in HIS eyes. So, don't let the world come at you like a pack of wolves, but stand firm in Christ so that when these thoughts come at you, you can deflect them away and turn them into something positive. Confide in Him for strength to defeat the hurt that comes at you.

Personally, I haven't experienced the whole train of thought when it comes to things like cutting or gagging, but I have witnessed it. It's a horrible thing that damages the beautiful woman God created you to be. Something that you will struggle with the rest of your life. So, stay as far away from these negative thoughts as you can. If you see someone struggle with these issues, try and help them. and if you currently dealing with some of these issues, I encourage you to talk to someone about them so they can help you.

..and always remember, when you look in the mirror, you may see imperfections, but God sees past those imperfections and sees beauty. You are beautiful. You are loved. and don't EVER let anyone tell you otherwise. <3


Sunday, March 4, 2012

A simple question, or much more?

A few weeks ago, I came across something. Something that really made me stop and think. Something that made me wonder if I'm really following, praising, and loving God to the best of my ability. What was it? A question - "Is what your living for worth dying for?". What stared out as a simple question, became more difficult when I really thought about it. I realized that it's not just a simple question, not  even a fancy analogy to wake me up, but a reality. Jesus died for me. He died so I can love, honor, and praise His holy name forever. He took all my pain, all of my suffering, and died on the cross so that I may live again. He suffered the most cruel punishment anyone could ever imagine, for me. An good for nothing girl, who is constantly disobeying God's commands. But my God, my King died for me. and  He didn't just die for me, He died for every murder, every adulterer, ever thief, and every stuck up person. HE DIED FOR EVERYONE. An act so amazing, so selfless shouldn't be taken lightly, so I'm asking you, is what you're living for worth dying for?


Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Now and Later.

A few weekends ago, I went to a youth retreat at my church. The theme was Now and Later, like the candy, only, not so much! We talked about what we can do now, to maintain sexual purity for later ( aka marriage). I know it may seem like it, but this wasn't your average 'True Love Waits' ceremony/weekend. Our speaker, Scott Kerby, could have come in and told us, "sex is bad, don't do it." and that would have been the end of it, but instead, he started off telling us that sex is a good thing, a very good thing; in the way God created it to be that is. You see, despite the belief of the world, God intended sex to be the most emotional and psychical act that joins a man and a woman, to bond them forever; but the world sees sex as something you just do whenever you feel like it, with whomever you want. As Scott went on, he talked about our relationship with others, in marriage, dating, and friendships. How they should look, and how we can maintain purity in those relationships.

When I was 13 I made a promise to my parents, peers, and God to remain pure until marriage and this weekend was really great refresher for me. It really reminded me of why I decided to make that promise in the first place. Yeah, it's going to be hard, but with God on my side, I know I will succeed.


Monday, January 30, 2012

Fall Apart.

The story behind this song is so true for all of us. 
I love this song so much. Definitely on my favorites list.  <3

Monday, January 23, 2012

We all get lost in the meaning of life.

In this world, people search and search for the best they can get out of life. Whether it's physical possessions, like having all the latest electronics, clothes, shoes, cars, or houses.. Or maybe it's personal, like  "finding yourself", following your dreams, finding "the one", leaving behind a legacy, or maybe just being a good person. Whatever the case, we all have our own ideas about life and how it should be. We create the this outlook on life, and many of us become bitter, rude, depressed, angry, selfish people when things don't go our way or tragedies happen. We begin to question God's love, loyalty, and faithfulness and start blaming Him for everything that is going wrong.

In Genesis chapter one, it says He created man in HIS own image, and later on it says, God saw all He has made and said it was very good. When God created man, He created us like him, perfect and sinless. We should be falling on our knees and giving Him the praise and glory He deserves. He's our Creator, Savior, Sustain-er, Father, Ruler, and King; and the world as a whole, is turning their backs on the very one who gave them life. We are the ones who screwed up when Adam and Eve were selfish and disobeyed God. We are the ones who let sin into our lives that separated us from our Creator forever. We are the ones to blame for sin, not God. He created us with freewill.  That freewill gave us the option to choose what is right, or what is wrong. We chose what is wrong, and we should be punished to hell for eternity for all the wrong we have done, but God is so loving and gracious, He gave us a way out.  Jesus says in John 14:6, "I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father expect through me." God sent His one and only Son to take the place for us on the cross, so that we might live again, If  you accept His free gift. Once you do accept Him into your life, it's up to you if you keep going on and living life like the rest of the world that is lost in sin, or following the one who gave gave you life, and praising Him for everything you have and everything you are.
We were made to give Him glory in the midst of chaos and confusion. He is worthy of all our praise and adoration, so let's give it to Him.

Just some thoughts...


Monday, January 2, 2012

The New Year.

Goodbye 2011... Hello 2012! :)

2011-This is bitter sweet moment  for me. You've been filled with amazing experiences, the opportunity to meet people I never forget, and to grow closer, not only to my friends and family, but to God. That being said, it has also one of the toughest years I've had to face. I was sick for along time, many of my close friends moved, and relationships were tested. I also began to question who I am, and who I am in Christ.

2012- This year, I'm not going to change anything. Why? Because I can't change anything by myself; but God working through me. He is the Lord of my life, so where He leads, I'll follow. I've been praying about what my new years resolution should be, and I don't want to change who I am. I want to improve who I am in Christ. I'm going to keep my focus on God and see what He has in store for me in this new year. I want to be able to praise Him in the good times and the bad. I want to learn how not to lean on my own understanding and leave everything to God. How not to worry about the future, because the moment I worry is the moment I'm not trusting God and His plan for my life. It says in John 16:33, "I have told you these things, so that in me you may have peace. In this world you may have trouble, but take heart, I have overcome the world." He has overcome the world so we don't have to worry about our past, present, or future. So we can have peace in knowing He is there for us through our good times and bad.

 I can't wait to see what God will bring this year and I pray that He will prepare my heart for anything that will be coming my way.