Posted in christian living, christianity, church, Faith, Jesus, life, love

Start Right Here

So apparently this song came out in 2018 and I’m just now hearing it! I was listening to Amazon Music when this song popped up and literally stopped me in my tracks.

Take a look at some of the lyrics!

We want our coffee in the lobby
We watch our worship on a screen
We got a Rockstar preacher
Who won’t wake us from our dreams
We want our blessings in our pockets
We keep our missions overseas
But for the hurting in our cities
Would we even cross the street?

But we wanna see the heart set free and the tyrants kneel
The walls fall down and our land be healed
But church if we want to see a change in the world out there

It’s got to start right here
It’s got to start right now
Lord, I’m starting right here
Lord, I’m starting right now

What are we doing to bring others to Christ? What are we sacrificing? ARE we sacrificing? Or are we too caught up in our comfort zone to even think about lost souls?

As we say goodbye to 2020 and hello to 2021 may it be our mission to start right here! To reach those who are lost, to proclaim the Gospel!

Why do we find it difficult to break the silence about the best news and most important Person the world has ever known?

Herb Vander Lugt

Jeremiah 29:13, “You will seek me and find me when you seek me with all your heart.

Posted in Uncategorized

Depression, Anxiety and the Church

Churches, we need a new approach to mental illness, or maybe not new, but a more Christlike approach to mental illness.

ED STETZER

Mental illness.

It can be hard to talk about. Hard to accept. Hard for some people to even acknowledge. As someone who suffers from mental illness, I know what it’s like to feel the stigma. To feel the hesitancy to bring the subject up because of not knowing how it will be received. To feel ashamed.

I’m starting a book called “Depression, Anxiety, and Other Things We Don’t Want to Talk About” by Ryan Casey Waller and it sounds like an interesting read.

Description

A pastor and licensed psychotherapist himself suffering from depression and anxiety takes on the relationship of mental health and faith while addressing the role of self-care, compassion, and restoration.

Everyone knows someone who suffers from anxiety, depression, or another form of mental illness, but a stigma around mental health remains–especially in the church. Ryan Casey Waller–pastor, therapist, and cosufferer–has experienced firsthand the jarring dissonance of wrestling with mental health while trying to maintain a vibrant Christian faith. It can be a discouraging, lonely battle. But it doesn’t have to be.

In this book, Waller emphasizes that mental health issues are not a symptom of a spiritual failing or insufficient faith; rather, suffering is the very thing our Savior seeks to heal as he leads us toward restoration. Combining practical theology, clinical insights, and deep compassion, Waller invites readers to see why we need conversations in the church about mental health and how to have them; discover why seeking knowledge about one’s self is critical to growing deeper in relationship with God; understand the basics of brain health, the intersection of biology and spirituality, and why emotional intelligence deserves more attention; learn practical steps such as how to find a therapist, distinguish between a psychiatrist and a psychologist, and afford treatment; and become equipped to support loved ones with mental illness while promoting healthy self-care.”

Addressing our mental health is more complicated than addressing other aspects of our health, especially for Christians.

Ryan Casey Waller

Mental Illness versus Physical Illness

One thing that has always always, ALWAYS bothered me was the acceptance of physical illness but not mental illness. Yes, with a physical illness, you can see what’s going on. You can see how a person’s physical illness makes them feel.

But what about those illnesses that can’t be seen? The ones that are crammed inside the brain. What about the person suffering from depression but is too scared to talk to anyone in the church about it because she fears being judged. Or being told “You don’t have enough faith. Just pray harder and it will go away.” (that “advice” infuriates me.)

Some of us battle mental illness like others of us battle our cholesterol.

Ryan Casey Waller

The Stigma

There continues to be a high level of suspicion, distrust and even fear in the church when it comes to psychology and psychiatry.

Matthew Stanford

“Mental illness is a sign of weakness”

“Your mental illness is punishment for your sin.”

“Just pray it away.”

Whether a person suffers from bipolar disorder, OCD, PTSD, anxiety, depression etc…the church must come together and help fight the end of the stigma surrounding the church.

For the stigma of mental illness to be broken, there must be direct, transparent speech from Christian leaders. We need more open dialogue in the church.

Ed. Stetzer

Its Not a Lack of Faith Issue

I have suffered from depression, anxiety and bipolar disorder for many years.  I was told by someone once that my faith was not strong enough and that’s why I was suffering. I’ll never forget that.

But it’s not a faith issue. What if what I had was physical? Diabetes, or cancer? We don’t question those illnesses so why is mental illness any different? According to Ed Stetzer,

We can talk about diabetes and Aunt Mable’s lumbago in church—those are seen as medical conditions, but mental illness–that’s somehow seen as a lack of faith.

Mental illness is a chemical imbalance in the brain. It shouldn’t be treated any differently from a physical illness.

It’s called a mental illness for a reason….because it is an illness. Why can’t it be accepted like any other illness?

Unknown

The church must stop being afraid of tackling the subject of mental illness. It exists. Simple as that.

Posted in Uncategorized

Sin: Can’t Live With It, Won’t Live Without It | Tim Challies

Sin. I can’t live with it, but time and time again I have proven that I’m just not able to live without it. I know that I have been freed from sin—freed from the power of sin—and yet I still sin. The Bible tells me not to let sin reign,…

Source: Sin: Can’t Live With It, Won’t Live Without It | Tim Challies

Posted in Uncategorized

The Struggle is Real

Fundraiser by Leigh Stone : Help Leigh Get Dentures (gofundme.com)

I have realized that no matter how vulnerable it makes me feel, asking for help doesn’t have to be a bad thing.

I am in desperate need of dentures. I have been for many years now and I decided to start a GoFundMe page to try to raise the money. With my limited hours at work due to my health problems and the many other monthly bills I have, trying to come up with the money for dentures will take too long.

So please, if you are able, consider donating to my page. If you can’t help financially, just pray for me that I will be able to raise the funds necessary. I covet your prayers!

I’m still in the middle of a fibro flare and bipolar relapse but I felt I needed to get on here and do some writing.

I’ve always been told to “write what you know.” I hate that phrase. How do I know what I know? How does a person write what they know if they aren’t sure what they know? I realize that makes absolutely no sense but it does to me, LOL.

I’m going to try to get on here several times a week to write, even if it’s just a sentence or two. 🙂

Posted in Uncategorized

Bipolar Relapse AND Fibro Flare up….

….at the same time?!

Seriously??

I’m not doing so well at the moment. I’m currently feeling like I’ve been run over by a truck. My whole body hurts…my skin hurts…even my brain hurts..here comes a fibro flare!

Oh but wait! My bipolar disorder is screaming at me too! From the racing thoughts to the crying to the impulsivity…I’m a hot mess!

I know I said I’d be back on here soon but I’ve got to take care of my health first. So if you think about it, please say a prayer for me.

Posted in Uncategorized

Dentures

Hey y’all! I have a favor to ask.

I’ve been struggling with really bad teeth for years. I’m never going to be able to afford dentures so I decided to ask for help by creating a GoFund Me page. It took me some time to gather the courage to create and share this page because honestly? I feel it’s selfish. But I’m desperate now. Bad teeth can lead to other health issues.

Due to soft teeth and multiple medications that cause tooth decay, my mouth is full of broken and decayed teeth.

I hate smiling because I’m so embarrassed of my teeth.

I am asking for your help in sharing this page and maybe consider donating if you can.

Posted in Uncategorized

Not Completely Back But I Will Be Soon!!

Hey y’all!!!

Long time no write!!

For those of you wondering about my absence, I had foot surgery on October 23rd and have been recovering. I’m on crutches and in a boot until around the 8th of December. I can’t sit at my desk very long because I have to keep my foot elevated as much as possible. I have a laptop but it needs maintenance and I can’t afford it right now. I am out of work until January.

I just wanted to hop on here and say hey!! I’m starting to work on some blog topics and hope to be back on here soon!!

Posted in The Great Commission

Every Christian an Evangelist

I’ve been listening to a lot of sermons by Adrian Rogers lately. If you have never heard him, please check out his website, http://www.lwf.org. Love Worth Finding ministries was founded by Rogers in 1987. On their website you can listen to sermons, both audio and television and you can download his sermon notes/outlines as well.

Rogers was so passionate about winning souls to Christ and it showed in every one of his sermons. I came across a particular one titled “Every Christian an Evangelist.” that really struck home with me. I’m going to share the link so you can watch the sermon. I think it’s very beneficial.

As Christians we are called to evangelize. According to Rogers, “We can’t all be preachers but we can all be reachers.” It is our duty to win souls to the Lord.

Spiritual Gifts

Have you ever taken a spiritual gifts test to discover what your spiritual gift might be? As believers we are all gifted in one way or another. We all have that God given gift when we become believers.

Well I took one the other night and according to this test I have the gift of exhortation. People with this gift have the ability to encourage others through the written or spoken word and Biblical truth. I don’t pretend to know everything but I do hope this blog reaches out to those searching for the truth.

When I first started this blog I wasn’t where I needed to be with the Lord. I had backslidden pretty far. But in the summer of 2017 I finally got right with the Lord and started blogging for Jesus.

I discovered the other night that God is using my natural ability to write to reach out to the world and hopefully encourage whoever takes the time to read my blog.

I never put the two together. Not until last night.

Philip, the Evangelist

In the book of Acts, chapter 8 verse 26, we read about Philip. Philip was one of the first to take the Good News of Christ to those outside the borders of Judiasm. He was a strong and effective evangelist. He was directed by an angel to head to Gaza and there, he met an Ethiopian eunuch who was reading in the book of Isaiah and had questions about what he was reading.

The Holy Spirit said to Philip, “Go over and walk along beside the carriage.” Philip ran over and heard the man reading from the prophet Isaiah. Philip asked, “Do you understand what you are reading?” The man replied, ” How can I unless someone instructs me. And he urged Philip to come up into the carriage and sit with him.

Acts 8:29-31

Philip told the Ethiopian man all about the Good News of Jesus and the man accepted Christ and immediately wanted to be baptized!

Philip exemplifies early Christian evangelists, whom the Holy Spirit empowered and guided. He was obedient and followed Jesus, telling others about Him.

The Great Commission

You see, God has a plan for each and every one of us. Every Christian is to be an evangelist. We need to be endeavoring to bring souls to Christ.

We don’t know what opportunities God may have in store for us but if we are obedient and follow his will, He WILL make them known.

Who knows? Maybe the next person you reach out to will turn out to be the next Billy Graham or D.L Moody! According to Adrian Rogers, in “1885 a Sunday School teacher led an uneducated shoe clerk to faith in Christ who became the great evangelist Dwight L. Moody. God used Moody to inspire the British pastor F.B. Meyer whom God then used to inspire Wilbur Chapman. Chapman was then used in the life of W.A Sunday, who preached revival meetings that spawned prayer meetings in Charlotte, North Carolina seeking God to send a revival to Charlotte. A revival did come to Charlotte and a 16 year old named Billy Graham was saved.

I find that so awesome!

Go therefore and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all things that I have commanded you and lo I am with you always even to the end of the age.

Matthew 28:19-20

Posted in Uncategorized

Fibro Flare Up

I’ve been feeling off lately. My body just doesn’t want to cooperate. Costochondritis (An inflammation of the cartilage that connects a rib to the breastbone.) reared it’s ugly head last week which almost ALWAYS indicates a flare up is in my near future. And yes, it started showing up earlier this week.

It also doesn’t help that there are not one but TWO systems moving in our direction. Whenever it gets rainy and dreary, my body practically screams at me. I woke up this morning and immediately knew it was going to be one of those days. I felt it in my bones before I even got out of bed. I had to call out at work because there was no way I was going to be able to stand on my feet for 5 hours.

Have any of y’all heard of Adrian Rogers? I had heard the name before but I recently have really gotten into his sermons that you can find at www.lwf.org He has really great sermons, including a series he preached on the book of Revelation. He sadly passed away back in 2005. But he has left a legacy!

This particular sermon really stepped on my toes and got me to thinking about how I’m living.

Check it out!

Posted in Uncategorized

19 Years Ago….

September 11th. I remember it like it was yesterday….as I’m sure all of you feel the same. I was taking classes at my community college. I had Psychology that day at 11 so I was so excited to be able to sleep in. However, my mom called me from work around 8:45 or so and told me to turn on the TV. I literally had just turned it on and was in shock at what I was seeing and then I saw the second plane hit. I was rendered speechless! I didn’t know what was going on!

I got to my class and the professor sort of hesitated before speaking and then just told us “class dismissed. I can’t teach you while our world is under attack. It’s too surreal.”

I haven’t written a poem in quite some time….I used to write them all the time. I could pop them out round the clock! But then I stopped. I guess I lost my creativity for awhile.

So please don’t be too harsh with this poem. I wanted to write….to express my feelings about the anniversary of September 11th. #neverforget

19 Years Ago

19 years ago our world was forever changed
19 years ago nothing would ever be the same
19 years ago we watched in horror
As the buildings came tumbling down

Thousands of people
Going about their morning
Unaware of was what about to happen
Unaware of the evil about to take place

So much evil
so much hate
When will this end
or is it too late?

Where were you
when our nation was attacked?
Where were you
When our freedom was threatened?

Were you sitting in a classroom
Confused at what you were seeing?
The horror of it all unraveling
As you tried to take it in?

Or perhaps you were at home
Maybe sipping your morning coffee
You turned on your TV
Just in time to see the second plane…

The world stopped moving
That Tuesday morning…
But it also brought us together
Determined to pick up the pieces
Determined to rise up

September 11, 2001
Forever etched in our minds
Forever in our heart.