May 29, 2020

Pride comes before a fall...

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Memory Scripture: Pride ends in humiliation, while humility brings honor. Proverbs 29:23


Pride.

I could tell you stories upon stories of how pride has caused me to look foolish and to be humiliated.

When it wells up inside, it burns to get out. It fills our lungs and our mouths and it desperately wants to escape and be heard.

It will  never ever lead to anything good. Pride leads to destruction.

Pride destroys relationships. 

Pride destroys our witness. 

Pride divides and separates.

Humility restores relationships. 

Humility advances our witness. 

Humility brings people together in peace. 

We need to look no further than the book of Genesis.

Eve took a bite of that piece of fruit due to pride.

A humble heart would have made her content with all that she had.

A prideful heart made her desire more.

Or how about Lucifer. He is described as a beautiful angel in heaven.

Yet, he was jealous of God.

His pride welled up and caused him to fall from heaven for eternity.

Pride is easy to see in others.

Pride is not so easily seen in ourselves.

Pride can swell up in any and all areas of our life.

The way we parent. 

The way we spend our money. Or don't spend our money. 

The house we live in. 

The car we drive. 

The denomination of our church. 

The size of our church--either big or small. 

The size of our friendship circle. 

The people we associate with. 

Our job. 

Our "ministry". 

Our bodies. 

Our achievements. 

Our politics. 

Our good works and volunteer work. 

It disgusts me even as I type.

Many of these, I have fallen into a pit of pride over.

Desperately, I want to live a humble life.

Yet, daily, pride wants to well up in my heart. Pride tempts to destroy any ounce of humility desired.

We must pray to be clothed in humility...at all times.

"Clothe yourself with humility." 1 Peter 5:5

When we least expect it, pride will rage in our veins.

Just like that roaring lion looking for someone to devour, pride is the same.

Be alert and of sober mind. Your enemy the devil prowls around like a roaring lion looking for someone to devour. 1 Peter 5:8

This world would be changed if we clothed ourselves with humility instead of pride.

Relationships would be restored. Conversations would be salt and light. Peace would bridge divisive hearts.

Humility brings honor.

Not just to ourselves but to others.

How do we uncover pride in our hearts?

Pray. 

Think, before we speak. 

Is what I am about to say helpful to the one listening? Or is it just boastful. 

What are my intentions? 

Does what I am about to say honor the Lord? Or does it just honor myself. 

Does my opinion help this person or is it to make myself look lofty and wise?

Am I throwing stones at others to build myself up and to make myself look better?

Are my words helpful or hurtful to the one listening?

As we pray for God to uncover areas of pride, here are some scriptures we can meditate on in the process.

When we feel that familiar swell of pride, let's have these scriptures on hand. Let's throw them in the face of the enemy!


"Do nothing out of selfish ambition or vain conceit.  Rather, in humility value others above yourselves." Philippians 2:3

Pride ends in humiliation, while humility brings honor. Proverbs 29:23

When pride comes, then comes disgrace,
but with humility comes wisdom. Proverbs 11:2

To fear the Lord is to hate evil;
I hate pride and arrogance,
evil behavior and perverse speech. Proverbs 8:13


Live in harmony with one another. Do not be proud, but be willing to associate with people of low position. Do not be conceited. Romans 12:16

But, “Let the one who boasts boast in the Lord.” For it is not the one who commends himself who is approved, but the one whom the Lord commends. 2  Corinthians 10:17-18

Before a downfall the heart is haughty,
but humility comes before honor. Proverbs 18:12



Listen, sweet friend. I understand fully and in complete agreement with what  Paul says in 1 Timothy 1:15, "This is a trustworthy saying, and everyone should accept it: “Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners”—and I am the worst of them all."

Lord, help us in our sin of pride.

The world desperately needs hearts of humility.


pride rehab,


jill











May 27, 2020

Let me be a woman...

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“The way you keep your house, the way you organize your time, the care you take in your personal appearance, the things you spend your money on, all speak loudly about what you believe. The beauty of thy peace shines forth in an ordered life. A disordered life speaks loudly of disorder in the soul.”
― Elisabeth Elliot, Let me be a woman


Yesterday, for the first time in my life, I witnessed road rage.

I mean, I have seen road rage on television, but have not experienced it personally, Until yesterday.

My mom and I were in my car together. A lady pulled up right behind me, almost in the trunk of my car, honking and waving and screaming at us.

It got worse. I won't go into further details, but I will just say that I got a good look at the lady who was losing her mind.

She was older than me. Possibly a grandmother.

When the incident was over, I was shaking.

In the middle of the night last night, I woke up thinking about this lady. Her arms flailing wildly, mouthing obscene words, and wanting me to pull over so she could have it out with me.

I immediately began praying for her. She was lost. She was angry. She was clearly an unhappy woman.

Lord, does she have children? Grandchildren?

My heart was filled with sadness thinking about her.

God has been speaking to my heart about my example to those around me.

As I get older, I have this responsibility. This calling to those coming up behind me.

Titus 2 lays it out for me.

 Likewise, teach the older women to be reverent in the way they live, not to be slanderers or addicted to much wine, but to teach what is good. Then they can urge the younger women to love their husbands and children, to be self-controlled and pure, to be busy at home, to be kind, and to be subject to their husbands, so that no one will malign the word of God. Titus 2:3-5

When I was a decade younger, I searched for these women. I craved the companionship of older, wiser women. There seemed to be very few to be found, if I am honest.

I prayed daily for this kind of woman to come into my life.

God did answer. These women came in seasons. Sprinkled in from time to time, just when I needed them most.

He also sent books for me to read from older, wiser women.

Elisabeth Elliot, Catherine Marshall, Martha Peace, Debi Pearl...to name a few.

These women have taught me so much through the years.

But, it doesn't stop here.

We have a responsibility.

To teach the younger women.

To lead by example.

I began asking the Lord recently why it seems the older women He put in my life have disappeared....

I now see.

I have a calling to do.

What has been poured into me, must be poured out to others.

I would love to just sit at the feet of some of my mentors and store up all the wisdom.

But, God calls us to share it. Teach it. Encourage others with what we have learned.

When it is easy to become selfish these days because my kids are more independent. My time is more flexible.

I know that selfishness will only steal what God has planned for my life as I become an "older woman".

If I spend all of my time in spas, getting facials, working on my body, eating out excessively with my friends,  shopping and decorating my house again and again....

I become frivolous instead of wise.

I deny my God given role of this upcoming season of my life.

If I become a lover of self...which the bible warns us about in 2 Timothy, I deny the Lord. I deny the reason I was created.

For people will love only themselves and their money. They will be boastful and proud, scoffing at God, disobedient to their parents, and ungrateful. They will consider nothing sacred. 2 Timothy 3:2

Our children need  role models. 

The young mother down the street is desperate for wise counsel. 

Our  husbands need a responsible and prudent wife who is wise with their money. 

It's time we grow up.

The world beckons us to stay young. Social media influencers luring us to buy things that will improve our appearance and keep us youthful. Many women have made a heck of a living enticing other women to shop, buy, and shop some more.

Many of us are just searching for the fountain of youth.

 Here is a secret....it does not exist.

For those of us over the age of 30...

Let's heed this call.

What are those coming up behind us seeing?

Many times children are seeing us excessively on our phones, ignoring them all the while,  filling up our time with social media, text messaging,  ministry work, indulging and binging on tv shows, or the latest town gossip.

“She looks well to the ways of her household and does not eat the bread of idleness.” Proverbs 31:27

How well do we spend our free time?

Be very careful, then, how you live—not as unwise but as wise, making the most of every opportunity, because the days are evil. Ephesians 3:2

How are we spending our money?

Jesus answered, “If you want to be perfect, go, sell your possessions and give to the poor, and you will have treasure in heaven. Then come, follow me.” Matthew 19:21

How are we treating our neighbors?

 ‘You shall love your neighbor as yourself.’ There is no other commandment greater than these.” Matthew 12:31

How do we react when we think no one is looking?

For nothing is hidden that will not become evident, nor anything secret that will not be known and come to light. Luke 8:17

How do we treat servers and wait staff?

 Do nothing out of selfish ambition or vain conceit. Rather, in humility value others above yourselves.. Philippians 2:3

Are finding ourselves too busy to invest in the lives others?

Teach us to number our days so that we may gain a heart of wisdom. Psalm 90:12

No matter what season of life that you are in the moment..

You have a purpose and a calling as a woman.

Instead of running from it, or looking for others to do it for us....

Let's step up to the plate.

Humbly asking the Lord, "How can I serve others today?"

“All creatures, with two exceptions that we know of, have willingly taken the places appointed to them. The Bible speaks of angels who rebelled and therefore were cast down out of heaven, and of the fall of man.”-Elisabeth Elliot


accepting the call, 


jill














May 22, 2020

The hidden life...

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Memory Scripture: “But godliness with contentment is great gain. For we brought nothing into the world, and we can take nothing out of it." 1 Timothy 6:6-7


As usual, this is not the post I was about to sit down and write. Nope.

There is no preparation for this post. Just a heart being bent a different way by the Holy Spirit as I write.

I was talking to a friend yesterday about motherhood. How hard it can be at times. How hidden it can feel at times. Meaning, so often, what we do is not seen. And, may never be seen.

But, God sees it.

 However, sometimes we want others to notice. To applaud us. To recognize the sweat on our brows and the exhaustion in our bones.

Often, it just seems like what we are doing as mothers will never inch us closer to the world's version of success. Or successful motherhood anyway.

I used to scroll Instagram seeing mothers which multiple children. Some even adopted or fostered With multiple playrooms. With multiple everything that I did not have. Mothers looking fabulous and of course always witty and enchanting.

It seemed so.....perfect.  I would look up from my phone and see my smaller house and two kids, and feel so......average.

I would look in the mirror and see the lines on my face and the aging in my eyes and think....wow. I really don't look successful. Or even average. I look....rough. 

Do you ever feel like this?

Do you ever feel that if you don't post a picture or a status update of your motherhood in motion and in action, that maybe, you don't really exist?

Gosh, I sure have felt this way.

It has seemed that if no one sees what happens here, it doesn't really count. If no one applauds me or nods their head in agreement to the thousands of words I let fall out of my mouth each day, some good and some not so good, then it must not really matter.

Through social media our lives have become open books. Open to the whole wide world to see, to interpret, to look into.

This has to affect how we live. How we mother. How we think.

Nothing is discreet or hidden these days. Everything is laid out for the whole watching world to see.

Hence, our children feel the pressure. To measure up. To look a certain way. To purchase filters for their pictures to enhance and edit their precious bodies. Because....

The world watches.

And what about the mothers?

We have felt it too.

We follow  mothers that we do not even know, quoting what they quote, buying what they buy, cooking what they cook, dressing how they dress....

At some point, we have to ask ourselves, what is reality?

Is there even such thing anymore?

The hidden life. The treasures found in a serving life. Away from the limelight. Away from the glare of the camera lens. Away from the approval and likes of others....

This is what I so desperately crave.

Like the woman with the alabaster jar of perfume.

Giving all she had...not thinking twice....and pouring it out on the Lord's feet. Washing his feet with her hair.

No accolades, in fact insults from the men around Jesus. "Why do you do this? You could have made money off of this to give to the poor..."

Jesus replied, "The poor you will always have, but you will not always have Me."

I am paraphrasing here. Look up the complete passage here in Matthew 26.

I want to be like this woman.

Wanting nothing on earth but Jesus.

Wanting only His approval and His eyes.

But, why is it so hard?

I think of John's piercing words here...

"He must become greater, I must become less." John 3:30

How do we become less in a world that shouts that we need to be greater?

Could it be that the greatest treasures are hidden. Away from the world's peering eyes. Away from the amount of social media friends, likes, and comments we have.

Could it be that the greatest treasure is actually found far away from all of it.

In the quiet of your bedroom. In the clink of pans in your kitchen as you prepare your one millionth dinner for the week. In the whisper of your child's breath saying her prayers each night. In the closeness of your spouse as you sit on the couch together watching the news. In the hello of your elderly neighbor as he sits on his porch watching the birds sing and dance around him.

The simple ordinary average  life. Just may be the greatest treasure we will ever unearth.

Maybe our lights shine even brighter when He lights them and we don't. Perhaps we don't even see the light, but others will and they do.

We can still be a city shining on a hill...

Like a lighthouse. It glows. It beckons. It shines.

And brings others ashore.

Without saying a word.


You matter, and He sees.


Embracing the hidden,



jill


(Re-post from 4/23/19)












May 21, 2020

Fools rush in...

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Memory Scripture: “But godliness with contentment is great gain. For we brought nothing into the world, and we can take nothing out of it." 1 Timothy 6:6-7


Last weekend I took my children and my niece and nephew out to dinner. We sat outside of a burger joint and celebrated the end of their school year.

I have said a million times before, being an aunt is my favorite thing on Earth besides motherhood. These kids are like mine, and I soak up every single second with them.

Celebration dinner (heart emoji)

During our conversation, my nephew, the one in college, casually said, "You seem to have become more political lately, Aunt Jill."

Just a casual observation and comment, but it struck the nerve of my heart.

He was right.

I thought about what I had been ingesting over the last few months.

News, news, news.

I had even started listening to talk radio in the car. (WHO AM I??)

Goodness gracious.

I had devoured op-ed's on websites. Searching, searching, searching for answers in all of this craziness of the pandemic.

I had done exhaustive internet searches of data, research, information.

Of course, every time I watch the news the information is swayed and partisan. The news is not the "news" anymore. It is mostly a battlefield of politics and opinions.

I thought about some long walks that I had recently had with my son. Time we usually share our hearts and talk about what God is doing in our lives.

Those walks had become more about me wanting to discuss my opinions and thoughts on things I had read or seen on the news.

He was always quiet and just kind of nodded his head as I talked.

I had wasted an opportunity with him in order to basically spew my opinions on something none of us really know much about if we are honest.

Here is what I do know: God is Truth. God is Wisdom. God has all the answers.

 Jesus answered, “I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me." John 14:6

Every word of God proves true. He is a shield to all who come to him for protection. Proverbs 30:5

We will never be satisfied with the world's answers. It will always leave us empty and needing more.

I logged off of Facebook years ago, but several friends have told me that it has turned into a battlefield of opinions.

Hatred spewing on threads and comments.

What have we become?

I keep asking myself..."Jill, what do you want to be remembered for?"

Certainly, I do not want to be remembered for being a fool. Venting my anger to whoever will listen. Fool, fool, fool.

Even fools are thought wise when they keep silent; with their mouths shut, they seem intelligent. Proverbs 17:28

The enemy wants to use this pandemic to divide us.

Community has for the most part been taken away. If we do not seek wisdom from God, the enemy will use this as an opportunity to separate us even more.

Yesterday, I went to lunch with my parents. The conversation with the waitress swirled around politics.

Here we go again.

I see a pattern here.

Listen, I am not saying that we should not be aware of what is happening in the world. However, when we are ingesting more of the world than the Word...we will begin to become what we ingest.

Remember the saying, "You are what you eat?"

It is the same with our spirits. What are we feeding it?

People are watching us.

People are taking in every word we say.

What will they take away from our words?

Do we point the conversation back to Christ?

Or, do we point it to our thoughts and opinions.

Do we represent the Love and Mercy of Christ in our interactions?

Or, are we throwing stones at those who see and do things differently than us.

Fools find no pleasure in understanding but delight in airing their own opinions. Proverbs 18:2-3

Fools think their own way is right, but the wise listen to others. Proverbs 12:15

I have lived long enough to witness....God leads us in different ways.

A mother may be called to homeschool while another is called to send her children to public school.

A mother may treat her children with conventional medicine, while another mother will treat hers with holistic medicine.

We must get off of our high horses of judgement and spread the Gospel of Jesus more than we spread our opinions.

...Make it your ambition to lead a quiet life: You should mind your own business and work with your hands, just as we told you, 12 so that your daily life may win the respect of outsiders and so that you will not be dependent on anybody. 1 Thessalonians 4:11-12

God made us all differently with different purposes and callings.

When we begin to belittle others, we become like the pharisees.

We become fools.

God gives us passions for different things. Passion is a good things.

However, those passions must not override our passion for LOVING others and sharing the Gospel.

 “Teacher, which is the greatest commandment in the Law?”
37 Jesus replied: “‘Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.’ 38 This is the first and greatest commandment. 39 And the second is like it: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’ 40 All the Law and the Prophets hang on these two commandments.” Matthew 22:36-40
It is no accident that we are reading the book of Job in our reading plan. 
His foolish friends are airing their thoughts and opinions regarding Job's troubles. 
They thought they were so wise and righteous. 
They were so wrong and foolish. 
They had no idea what God was doing in Job's life, yet they loved standing on their soap boxes judging and condemning him. 
Lord, let us not be these kind of people. 
Friends, let's seek God's Word more than we seek the world's words. 
Let's seek wisdom over opinions. 
God will give us wisdom if we would only ask. 
If any of you lacks wisdom, let him ask God, who gives generously to all without reproach, and it will be given him. James 1:5
We have this opportunity to represent Christ when HOPE is so desperately needed. 
Let's point the way to Him. Not through our opinions, but through Truth. The Truth of His Word. 

digesting Truth, 

jill




May 18, 2020

Simply less....

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Memory Scripture: “But godliness with contentment is great gain. For we brought nothing into the world, and we can take nothing out of it." 1 Timothy 6:6-7

As most of you, I have had much time to sit and think about things.

This quarantine has allowed me time to process my days, my schedule, my life.

I realized a few things that I want to change moving forward.

The word that keeps coming to mind is simplify.

My life was anything but simple before the forced rest.

On the outside, maybe it seemed like life had gotten easier. With one child in college, and only one left at home, life was definitely different.

Life was not as quiet as I thought it would be in this stage of my life.

My calendar was full. Most of the things on there were good things, but a lot of things.

Several years ago I began a journey of saying yes less. It worked.

However, why did I still have this clutter in my mind?

My calendar was certainly beginning to look a little better, but my mind was constantly in a state of chaos.

The way that I did things was certainly not simple.

I had developed bad habits. Habits that just kept me scattered and distracted.

Have you ever been cleaning your bathroom and then suddenly realized your cookies were in the oven about to burn up the whole place?

Or, been folding laundry and remembered that drawer you need to clean out? So, you throw down the laundry basket and begin emptying that junk drawer?

This is how I constantly felt in my mind.

As my husband likes to put it, I always felt like I was "behind the 8 ball".

Good intentions all the live long day, but the follow through was the problem.

Clutter, distractions, consumption.....pulled at me.

Why do we do this?

How do we get in this place?

I was still getting up and having my time with Jesus every morning. I was still praying.

But, somehow during the day, my mind went back to the familiar clutter. The over-thinking, over-doing, over-contemplating, over-consumption.

My mind was not at rest.

I felt like everything was dependent on me.

Lem's grandmother had this uncanny ability. I always felt safe and at peace around her. She was never trying to "save" me, or rush me, or impress me.

She was just simple.

Simply grace.

And I felt that grace to "just be" every time I was around her.

Simple is not a fashion or decorative style.

Simple is the state of a heart at peace with Jesus. At peace with knowing that He is all we need.

We do not need busy schedules, countless social events, expansive ministries, too many friends to count and keep up with to make life better.

Less really is more.

We can learn so much from Jesus. He could have touched and healed millions of more people in his life span of 33 years.

However, he lived simply.

Then he said to them, “Watch out! Be on your guard against all kinds of greed; life does not consist in an abundance of possessions.” Luke 12:15

He lived at the direction and will of His Father.

He certainly was not out to impress anyone.

He just offered that peace. That peace that can only be found in a life quieted by Him.

I have told you these things, so that in me you may have peace. In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world. John 16:33

When we look to the world, social media influencers, politicians, high society people for answers....

We will stay in a state of clutter. Our minds will never be able to clear out the noise of their opinions, demands, and influences.

Let's just look to Jesus.

Guarding our minds, hearts, and eyes from things that pull us away from that rest.

He is all we need.


Do not love the world or anything in the world. If anyone loves the world, love for the Father is not in them. For everything in the world—the lust of the flesh, the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life—comes not from the Father but from the world. The world and its desires pass away, but whoever does the will of God lives forever.” 1 John 2:15-17



simplifying,


jill












May 14, 2020

7 Secrets....

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 Memory Scripture: We demolish arguments and every pretension that sets itself up against the knowledge of God, and we take captive every thought to make it obedient to Christ. 1 Corinthians 10:5


On October 3rd of 2019, I wrote 7 secret prayers in my prayer journal.

These were not just any prayers, they were BIG prayers. HUGE prayers. Crazy-sized prayers.

Before I wrote them down, I prayed and told God that even if He did not answer them, I would still believe. I would still trust Him. I would still pray.

As of today, May 14th 2020, 4 of the 7 secret prayers have been answered.

I am not telling you this to brag on my prayer life, but I am telling you this to brag on God.

He listens. He hears. He acts.

However, I had to pray, I had to be intentional, daily, with lifting up these secret requests.

If I am completely honest with you, around January I stopped praying for these things. Life got busy. I got distracted. Praying for 7 things on this list each day was put on the back burner.

God still answered.

Let me repeat that, God still answered.

Those prayers that I prayed from October 3rd until December?

Those prayer seeds were planted, and they sprouted.

Today, I decided to add to the list and to continue to pray for the other 3 things I had listed.

As we end the book of Esther in our reading plan, I have to wonder....

Did God choose her to be queen because of her prayer life?

We know she prayed and fasted.

Was becoming a queen on her secret  prayer list when she was a little girl?

Esther was adopted by her cousin, Mordecai. Her life was far from royalty.

Surely, she never dreamed she would be queen. Oh, but how I wonder if secretly she prayed for this very thing.

What if we prayed intentionally, fervently, and God-sized prayers every single day?

What if we petitioned these things day after day. What if we trusted Him, even if the answer He gives us is "no".

Here is the thing about prayer...

It draws us closer to Jesus. 

We start to think like Him. 

We start to have hearts aligned to His. 

We start to have greater faith...because we begin to see His Hand in everything. 

If we only ask for things that are safe for the asking...or things that will not disappoint us too much if we ask and He doesn't answer...

We miss out on seeing the Greatness of our God. 

We miss out on witnessing just how INCREDIBLE and POWERFUL He really is. 

We miss out on being able to share of His Greatness with others. 

I challenge you today...

Sit down in a quiet place.

Grab a pen and paper, or type on your phone notes.

7 prayers.

7 big prayers that you  greatly desire, even though they may seem crazy.

Before writing them, ask God to align your heart with His every single day that you pray those prayers.

Set a reminder on your phone to pray over those 7 things.

Lastly, surrender those things to Him.

No matter what happens, trust Him and surrender to His plan in the prayer process.

Prayer creates intimacy between us and Jesus, which is what our spirits so desperately crave most.



adding to my list.


jill





May 7, 2020

Scared to breathe...

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 Memory Scripture: We demolish arguments and every pretension that sets itself up against the knowledge of God, and we take captive every thought to make it obedient to Christ. 1 Corinthians 10:5

Fear.

It is a word that has haunted me, shadowed me, hovered over me, and made its home inside of me.

Fear has consumed my mind, my heart, my body. Physically, emotionally, and spiritually.

Several years ago, I began a journey to overcome it through God's Word.

I had trust issues with God. I knew He could help me...but would He?

I had seen others be healed from fear....but could I really be healed?

The journey began in 2012.

It is hard to know exactly what I was fearful of if I am honest.

I guess that is the thing about fear....it is the big invisible monster that threatens to strangle you. All the while, nothing is actually visible or tangible. It is a feeling...an oppression of sorts.

A smothering.

I talked to doctors, psychologists, counselors, pastors...

All of them agreed on one thing.

I had to change my thoughts.

Ha. Well, how in the world do you do that?

Do not copy the behavior and customs of this world, but let God transform you into a new person by changing the way you think. Then you will learn to know God’s will for you, which is good and pleasing and perfect.-Romans 12:2

I had to replace thoughts with something else. I decided to replace them with God's Word.

Memorizing scripture.

I began writing scripture down on  4x6 index cards. I would tape them up all around my house.

If you came to my house during this time, you probably would have rolled your eyes thinking, "she thinks she is such a good Christian." In fact, it was quite the opposite. I was desperate, and bare, and suffering in the black hole of fear.

The journey of changing my thoughts which would eventually begin to change my behavior has been a long and winding road. Good, bad, hard, messy....all of the emotions. Sometimes all in one day.

When Covid-19 came on the scene, I felt a familiar rush of fear. I woke up one night in mid March with that suffocating feeling again.

What if my children got sick? What if my parents got sick? What if my husband got sick?

I quickly pulled the index of scriptures out of my memory bank and began to recite them.

Fear is irrational.

It makes you crazy. You know what I am talking about if you have ever struggled with it. Like a mad woman. It overtakes you. It starts small and then before you know it you are immersed in panic.

Fear also isolates.

When I was in my worst state of fear, I would not go anywhere. I dreaded church. I dreaded social gatherings. I dreaded being asked to participate in anything.

Because...what if....what if I had a panic attack in the pew at church? What if I freaked out when I was talking to someone at a party? What if I just started convulsing into a panic attack while driving down the road?

Fear kept me at home. 

Fear kept me in the prison of my thoughts. Which is a dangerous place to be. 

Fear oppresses its victim. 

Fear separates us from community. 

Fear drives us away from others. 

Friend, if you are struggling during this pandemic...I urge you, beg you, to use this as an opportunity to memorize scripture.

I am telling you with 100 percent certainty...the Power of God's Word healed me.

Yes, I still have moments.

But, I know the Source of my strength. God's Word.

My children and I took our dog for a walk yesterday morning.

My son out of the blue said he really wanted to memorize Psalm 1. 

He had recently memorized Psalm 91 and wanted to expand on his scripture memorization journey.

I asked him how he had memorized Psalm 91 so quickly, and he said it was because I had taught it to him when he was younger. He had just not been practicing reciting it anymore.

Tears flooded my eyes. I remember exactly the day I practiced memorizing Psalm 91 with my kids. It was more for me...because I was struggling so badly with fear.

Yet, the seed was planted in their hearts. They remembered.

I set out to write a post on a completely different subject today, but my fingers just started typing this post.

Whoever you are....that needed to read this....I am praying for you right this very minute.

I wish I could hold your hand, look you in your sweet face, and tell you that I get it. Oh, how I get it.

You are not alone.

Don't let the enemy convince you that you are alone.

Pick up your sword of Truth today, God's Word. And slay the enemy.

Pick it up over and over. Tuck it away in your mind and heart.

When you wake up in the dead of night covered in sweat, recall His Word.

Recite it over and over.

Wanna know why I have a memory scripture each week?

Because I desperately need it.

I am not trying to impress anyone with scripture knowledge. Oh, the contrary.

I need it like I need air in my lungs.

We demolish arguments and every pretension that sets itself up against the knowledge of God, and we take captive every thought to make it obedient to Christ. 1 Corinthians 10:5


breathing again,


jill












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