Hey there friend, how are you? What have you been up to? Do tell............
It has been far too long since I blogged. I have been so busy living life (12 grand babies now), setting and reaching goals, and personal growth that I have neglected sharing the journey. Life has been so amazing and 2017 was the best year of my life. 2018 is going to be the BEST year yet! AND for YOU too!!! God is sure blessing our new life in sobriety, July will be 5 years. Thankful that I remember the OLD me, so that I remember where I never want to return. But grateful for the NEW me in Jesus and natural living.
If you remember my first or second blog, you remember that one of my goals with Young Living was to replace my SSI income and feel good about myself while being back in the work force. By the grace of God, I was able to do that and it feels so STINKING good! By June 24, 2018 we WILL be Silver, but more importantly, I will be a servant leader like Jesus and help our team leaders reach their goals so that they too can live an abundant life with purpose.
We now have a growing thriving team in the US and in the Philippines, which is super exciting. The thought that we are helping so many others to live a healthier toxin free life just feels so rewarding. We are still nowhere where we want to be with our business and personal life, but we are well on our way and enjoying the journey.
Every day is a day to live better than the life we lived the day before. His mercies are new every morning (Lamentations 3:22-23). God never ceases to amaze me with His provisions and blessings, which I don't deserve by any means, but so thankful that he took a sinner like me and is changing day by day into the image of Jesus. I can only live a life of worship by striving to live a life pleasing to Him, thanking Him for his sacrifice and perfect love.
I am now down 61 pounds, 30 of which was lost in 2017 and that my friend feels so GOOD, both mentally and physically. If you wonder what I am doing, I am happy to share with you anytime. I love to inspire others to become the best versions of themselves. I don't know it all or have all the answers, but I am transparent enough to share what has worked for me.
I have finally come to terms with loving myself through Jesus and finally see how uniquely made I am by God. Guess what? YOU are uniquely made too. Please take a moment and read all of Psalm 139, it is only 23 verses and worth every moment of your time. Then, if you are really wanting a breakthrough please read it every day for a month out loud to yourself and watch what amazing things will happen. I promise...you won't be disappointed.
So....do tell...what is new for you? What goals have you set for yourself this year? Let's inspire each other and help others along the way. Let's leave this world better than what we found it.
Blessings and remember...........I love you, but Jesus loves you more!
I have been praying that God would use my testimony to help others who are going through what I have gone through with addiction and no self love. I desire my story of success to be used for HIS glory and for the edification of others who are struggling in their addiction and on self destruct mode like l lived for so long.
Today an opportunity presented itself and I FAILED.....BIG TIME!!
You see I had just finished a book by John Maxwell called "Failing Forward" and literally was on my way back from the Library to take my MIL's books to her when I rounded the corner and saw someone in just her thong walking around in the street and at the drug house across the street from my MIL's. She was peeking in the windows of the neighbors, who have kids and my mama bear came out with a vengeance. This house is no good and I can say that because I myself used to hang there when in my addiction. Not the house, but what goes on there.
I had the opportunity to share the good news of Jesus Christ and His blood saving grace. I had the opportunity to share what He has done for me. I could have shared how He has transformed my life and blessed me beyond measure, taken me from the depths of Hell to the gates of Heaven. I could have shared with her that I am loved by a magnificent heavenly Father. I could have shared with her that she is also loved by HIM. I could have loved her through him and helped her. But no...................what did I do?
...................I yelled at her.......to get some clothes on, that those kids didn't need to see her like that and to get out of there or I was calling the police (an eviction just took place there). She did put clothes on and leave after a bit. But I just kept asking myself, Is this how God intended to use me? I think (I know) NOT!!! This was a failure. Will I use this in failing forward or will I just fail backwards? No I didn't handle this in the way I should have, but I did learn a valuable lesson through my failure and that is why I am choosing to fail forward. If I just sit and beat myself up like I have been for the last hour, then Satan has a grasp on me and I am failing backwards or just plain failing. HOWEVER, I am choosing to see where I failed and made a decision to not make that mistake again and that is failing forward.
I am praying that God allows our paths to cross again so that I can offer her clothing, food, the gospel, my testimony and most importantly........just show her that she is LOVED. I know that I needed to know that love, that only Jesus can provide, when I was lost and in my addiction. I need it every day. Please today, don't waste an opportunity, but Just show some LOVE to someone. We are presented with so many opportunities throughout a day. Who know how you will affect someone's life by just showing love and kindness.
In the beginning my family, I won't mention any names, made fun of me when I started this oily journey. They scoffed at the fact that it was an MLM, even said that it was a Pyramid Scheme. NOPE....those are illegal and look more like Corporate America and the standard 9-5 company job. They said this business was a waste of time and money. They said I was fooling myself. They said it was a FAD....really? FAD's don't last over 5,000 years. They looked at me like I was weird.......and I am...but not in that sense.
In the beginning I let my mind play tricks on me, even letting the Devil to have a foothold. I would listen to things like you can't do that, you aren't worthy, you aren't smart enough, you are a recovering addict, what makes you think that anyone would believe you or trust you, you're too fat to be running a health and wellness company, etc...etc......you get the idea. ALL LIES!!
Well.....NO MORE....that was letting small minds convince me that my dreams were too big. NO THEY AREN'T!! This is the first time in my life that I have allowed myself to dream or even be in the right sober state of mind to dream a dream. This is the first time that I truly believe in myself and that I can accomplish my dreams. NO...I can't do it on my own, but I CAN do it with JESUS by my side and God leading me every step of the way as I rely on his wisdom, power and vision. NO...it's not always going to be sunshine and unicorns. YES...it will be tough at times, but I CAN succeed and I CAN do anything I put my mind to with the power of the Holy Spirit flowing through me.
NO, I am not where I want to be YET, but I WILL BE and I am enjoying the journey and the process right here, right now, exactly for a moment like this. Don't EVER let anyone rent space in your head other than God and positive thinking. YOU CAN DO THIS TOO! YOU CAN BE A SUCCESS TOO! YOU CAN MAKE YOUR DREAMS COME TRUE! YOU CAN DO ANYTHING YOU PUT YOUR MIND TO!!
Have you ever had one of those times where you can almost hear God speaking to you through his Holy Spirit? Where it is louder than that still small voice, almost like a booming sound system at a concert. Well, I have and though I love it when He speaks to me, it can be scary too. Not the voice itself, but what it is (God) prompting you to do.......take that leap of faith and watch my power, God says. Oh boy!!! Something big is about to happen and I believe this with every cell inside my body. 2 Timothy 1:7 says, "For God hath not given us the spirit of fear; but of power, and of love, and of a sound mind."
You see I have been on permanent disability (SSI) since 2009 with all my physical and mental issues, but one of my goals with my Young Living business was to get off of SSI. Well, that is happening a little sooner than I had anticipated. My check has been dwindling and dwindling for a while now which started when I married my best friend, Marc. And with every little raise he has gotten, SSI has taken more and more out so that I am down to a meager $272 a month. Now this is not a lot of money, but when you live paycheck to paycheck just to pay your bills it seems like a lot and you become pretty dependent on it. Keep in mind, Marc makes a lot of money in this day and age of a whole $14 hr. Whoop-Whoop!! Seriously?!!! Please don't think that that comment was directed towards my husband, he is a great provider. It's just that the government thinks that that is so much in the day we live in. HA! Let them try to live on that and see if they don't change the cost of living standards?!!!
Well, after the Holy Spirits prompting, much prayer, a lot of Bible reading, a talk with my Pastor and many discussions with my husband; I have decided to be obedient and take that leap of faith. It is funny how it is working out this way, since it is that time for my review anyway to see if I still qualify for benefits. Will there be uncertainties?.....YES! Will there be less food in the house?......YES! Will we have to cut corners on electricity, like less A/C and heat?........YES! Will we be able to still have those splurges and eat out?......NO! Will I have to cut down on my ER (oils) order for a bit?........YES! Now that part scares me too, since there are so many items my body needs. Philippians 4:19 says, "But my God shall supply all your need according to his riches in glory by Christ Jesus." Since starting Young Living products I haven't had to go to the Doctor hardly at all, just for those extreme moments with my neurosurgeon. This is one area that is still being worked out, again a leap of faith, but God ALWAYS takes great care of me in a mighty way.
I also think that this is a very strong incentive to give me that push to step up my business game. To slap fear in the face and as Nike says, "JUST DO IT!" I have been praying that God would bless my business in a mighty way, in a way that I can give him all the glory. But how can I expect him to bless it if I am hanging onto that $272 like it is GOLD? Like it means more to me than life? How can I expect God to bless me when I haven't been honest with the government about my income with Young Living, which is about the same amount I get from SSI? He can't!!! So I am being obedient and taking that step, knowing that He will provide and prosper us exceeding abundantly above. Integrity and honesty are huge and I want to be known for both of these. Matthew 6:33 says, "But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you."
So today is a new day and the start of a new life and as a friend said to me, "You can do this, time to take hold of a new future and hang on for the journey." I cannot wait to see what my Heavenly Father has in store for us and I cannot wait to see how it is played out. Now to just be patient and watch with high expectations......because MY GOD does NOT disappoint! Ephesians 3:20 says, "Now unto him that is able to do exceeding abundantly above all that we ask or think, according to the power that worketh in us."
Do you suffer from INSECURITY like I do? I think if we are honest, most of us are in some area of our life or maybe even all, suffer from being insecure or not knowing who we are (IDENTITY). I think that if I had known years ago, I mean truly known that I am HIS, a child of God and a sister in Christ, my life probably wouldn't have gone down the road it did. But that is the past and I cannot change that, what I can change is how I view myself now and live a life of being secure and confident in who I am as a child of God.
Most of my life, up until 3 years ago, was spent in the darkness of addiction, prostitution, thievery, homelessness and so much more. I was lost and didn't know who I was or why I was here, other than to suffer, by personal choices and lack of love for myself. But that all changed the day I fully gave my life to Jesus and started following after Him.
Did you know that Satan tried to tempt Jesus by attempting to cast doubt on who Jesus was and to Whom He belonged? It was in the desert, (Matthew 4:6) says, Satan said, "If you are the Son of God." Satan's tactics are no different for us. He will attack our identity and if we don't have a firm grasp on who we are and to whom we belong, we will be vulnerable to his lies. Anyone who is lacking that firm grasp of who they are and their values for which they stand can and will fall prey to the enemy's lies; single women looking for companionship at the expense of their virtue (I know because I have done it), businessmen/women willing to backslide on integrity to get ahead, even Christ followers stuck in secret sin when victory is within their reach. That is why teaching our children early on who they belong to.....Jesus.......is so very important. I wish my parents had taught me this and I wish I had also taught my children that they are God's children, that they belong to Him.
So many of us live our lives trying to please others to find acceptance and validation. I know because I was always changing to become what I thought others wanted me to be so that they would accept me and like me. What we are really searching for is our identity and the confidence that comes from knowing it. Insecurity means no sense of identity, which makes it easy to believe lies, leading to an unrealistic fear of what people think. I spent too much time in this cycle, what a yucky way to live. It's no wonder I have struggled with depression and addiction. And it's no wonder the enemy wants to deceive us about identity since everything we do flows from that source. Remember, YOU are a child of God, He made you, Christ died for you, and that should tell you something....right?!!!
Our identity is found in HIM. The unchanging, all powerful, Creator of our souls. He already knows everything about you and He still loves you. He knows your secret sins, fears, worries and thoughts AND...He still accepts you for who you are......just as you are.....right where you are. (Romans 5:8) says, "But God commendeth His love toward us, in that, while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us." Did you hear that? Jesus died for us while we were still sinners, now that is love and that should show who we belong to. We are HIS!!! We can be sure that He never changes so our identity is rock solid, but we have to stay connected to Him to keep rooted in this security. I know that the ONLY reason I am doing so well in my sobriety is because I have finally seen who I am in HIM. There is a song by Casting Crowns called "Who Am I" that has forever changed the way I see myself. Please don't think that I am saying it was this song that changed me because it wasn't. That is only done by realizing who I am in Christ, submitting to my Heavenly Father and daily reading His word, the Bible.
Life is not perfect, nor am I, but life is truly amazing and there is an unexplained joy and freedom when you continually look to Jesus for who you are. My prayer is that my story helps someone, at least one, to find out for themselves who YOU ARE IN CHRIST JESUS AND THAT YOU LIVE WITH YOUR IDENTITY IN SWEET SECURITY OF OUR HEAVENLY FATHER.