Sunday, January 15, 2012

If you do...

The last couple of weeks has really been an eye opener for me. I am learning so much about my life that I think I already knew but maybe had forgotten or even denied for a long time. But when you unclutter your mind and turn your focus to what's important, your eyes are open to some things! If you are willing God will show you some things to help your life.

A couple of those things are: 1. Although I know that self-control is a fruit of the spirit, it is not one that is ripe in me yet. 2. I am not convince that God has forgiven me for ALL my sins. Especially those great big ones that I committed...they are still lingering!

So this self-control thing, it hinders every part of a person's life. Finances, health, relationships, jobs...I can't believe it. If you don't have self-control then you will overspend, over eat and just suck the life out of people with your emotional roller coaster. I have found though that lack of self-control just stems from fear and untrust. If you overspend for example, its because you want stuff that you don't have and are willing to sacrifice your bill money to get it because you fear that you can't ever afford it or you are not trusting God to get it to you. Same goes for over are just trying to fill a hole that only God can fill. I don't even want to get into relationships. So, how do you trust God in these areas so you can let go and have some self-control?? Get in the word. Learn the principles. We know the promises of God. We know God promises us prosperity and we pray for that. We are promised health and healing but we cannot expect the promises but not practice the principles. Seek ye first the kingdom of God...Are you shopping with your tithe money? How do we learn the principles? We will never learn the principles without reading the word and learning on our own. Learn by revelation knowledge through the holy spirit.

Now, knowing I am forgiven is something that God and I have been working on. Some days I know it but then I am reminded by something or someone how HORRIBLE the sin is in the worlds eye and I have to go back and beg at God's feet again. That is NOT a requirement of God. That is an insecurity of my own. I find myself asking God if he REALLY forgives me for (fill in sin here). His answer is always yes but a couple of nights ago he not only said YES he also said "And now its time for you to forgive YOURSELF"...WOW, YES!!! I understand that forgiveness comes with time. I know that it takes some time to find that forgiveness within myself. I also know that when you truly forgive others you can look at them and not feel that anger/upset in your spirit. I am not there with myself but I am on the road to wishing myself well :)

Ephesians 1:11-14 says It's in Christ that we find out who we are and what we are living for. Long before we first heard of Christ and got our hopes up, he had his eye on us, had designs on us for glorious living, part of the overall purpose he is working out in everything and everyone. 13 -14It's in Christ that you, once you heard the truth and believed it this Message of your salvation), found yourselves home free—signed, sealed, and delivered by the Holy Spirit. This signet from God is the first installment on what's coming, a reminder that we'll get everything God has planned for us, a praising and glorious life.

REALLY? Here I sit, missing on all that God offers me because I can't let go of something in my past? Isn't that the silliest thing ever? Something that he doesn't even remember. As far as the East is from the West, that's how far he has removed our transgressions from us!! Do you know that it is impossible to measure the distance between the east and west?? You can't do it. I started typing this in sort of a blah state but I have typed myself happy LOL. Forgiving myself has moved to the top of my list.

I heard someone say "If you do what I do, you will have what I have" if any of you have struggled with forgiving yourself and conquered it I would love to chat about it. There has to be some practical things to do along side the spiritual so I am all ears!!

Oh yea, I wrote my first tithe check today since my heart completely change about it and felt absolute FREEDOM! I have written my budget! I have a picture of my new car where I can look at it, imagine myself driving it and see myself signing those papers!

So far, 2012 is super!!

Tuesday, January 3, 2012

Day two...Epic Fail

Well, I absolutely did not start or even think about my budget today. I have learned that God has new mercies for me everyday so tomorrow I will try again.

I did however, fill out my FAFSA and apply at Tenn Tech. So, I am well on my way to improving my Job situation along with furthering my education...GO Michelle.

Wait, as I type this I am realizing that I did pay Alyssa's braces off today so that counts for something!! That will have an impact on my budget for sure! aaahhh...sweet redemption!

Did I wake up at 5:30? H to the No! I didn't. My sleepy self stayed right in bed until 6:15 but to my advantage NO SCHOOL so that means NO CHAOS. Tomorrow though...pray for me!

Let's see...Alyssa was a pro at cooking supper tonight! That simple lifestyle change may stick around and for those health conscious people out there, I wasn't hungry so I didn't eat. That falls under my health category right??

So about the whole house thing!! I live in a house that I rent and I am really trying to make it my own. My sweet landlady that I rent from doesn't mind me doing anything to the house that will improve it aside from tearing down walls and stuff so I am doing what I can with paint and puttering. My dilema at the moment is my bedroom. I have gray, black and red in there now with WHITE walls. Jason and I received a beautiful red and yellow quilt that his grandmother made (she passed away recently so it is such a sentimental gift). It is bold and bright and I would love suggestions of ways to use it in my room even if I have to redecorate completely!! Any suggestions?

So for tomorrow?? Budget, getting up on time (5:30), pray that I am accepted into the Regents online program through Tech and receive 100% of my schooling paid for, take the high road (I can do it) and love people!!


Monday, January 2, 2012

Productive Maybe...Simple YES

So, just as I anticipated I spent the entire day thinking about more ways to live out this dream I have named "Simplicity". My work day was not the most productive since I was side tracked on several occassions by day dreams and great ideas. I was talking to a friend about my list of things I wanted to simplify and we laughed about the silliness of the order but I was quickly nudged by the holy ghost and sure enough God spoke up. See, I can put the list in the order that "world" would approve of OR I could put the list in the order that my heart really feels is important. That is the only way that I am going to do it really! Being true to what my heart desires. So, all you health nuts out there take a seat because my health may stay way down there at #10. I may not love this 25 pound overweight body BUT I am not so disgusted that it must move to #1 on my list. I have heavenly father and amazing husband that loves me just the way I moving on.

I actually found that I may just be able to work on EVERYTHING on my list at the same time which excites me beyond belief. To prove to myself that I could do that, here are few things that I did just today to move closer to living my simple and happy life...

About my finances: See I have had this constant battle within myself for years. This battle was about tithing. I know in my heart that tithing is the right thing to do. The word says it, so do it. Sounds so simple doesn't it? Well, for most it should be! But for my over analytical brain I have complicated it. When I first started attending church my excuse was "I need to learn more about it", then I learned more but what I learned was that you shouldn't tithe out of a heart of expectancy, meaning that because I tithe God owes me. I completely understood that and accepted that and loved that so I started tithing from a giving heart but when a financial crisis came and the God didn't come through (in my time and my way) I found myself mad at God and saying..I TITHE SO WHERE IS MY BLESSING..ouch! wrong attitude right? Needless to say, I just kept my money (along with my financial struggles). Within a few months I gave it another shot but there is always the question of "How much should I tithe?" I asked a friend once a few years back and her response was 10%. Thank you Captain Obvious. What I wanna know is 10% of what? Gross income, Net income, what is left after your bills are paid?? how much? what is the "rule"? Her response, "Do you want gross blessings or net blessings?" REALLLLYYY??? Forget it. I decided it was too complicated so I gave up. Another excuse to be selfish and rely on myself is what that was! I have settled this issue in my heart now and God and I have discussed this issue and I have the answer. I believe tithing is not an option. But, it is a personal thing between God, myself and my hubby but know that my check will be in offering plate without fail. First things first fruits will go to God. The rest of my finances will fall into place! Tomorrow, my intent is to write a budget and follow it. I will update everyone later :)

2. My Education: I contacted TN Tech today and took the first step to applying for Regents Online Classes. This is probably the scariest thing I have ever done but this is an area that will actually kill two birds with one stone (My Job will fall under this one too, part of it anyway). My goal? A bachelor's degree!! My degree will be Bachelor of Professional Studies with a concentration in Organizational Leadership. I will take 120 credit hours and it may take me 10 years but i am gonna do it. I am gonna succeed and you know why? "I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me" and "apart from him I can do nothing". God and I are going to take care of this one.

3. My Job: This one is easy. While I am getting to where I am going I simply have to decide to rise above the rest and take the high road. Sometimes, this is tough but I can and will do it. I am a great Customer Service Team Leader. I have a heart for people. I have God on my side. That's it.

4. My House and My Schedule: This one will take a minute! It has so many sub-titles. But today, I searched for simple dinner meals, organization ideas and had a heart to heart with my kiddos about chores and expectations. Tonight I will set my clock for 5:30am. Clothes will be laid out for tomorrow. Lunches will be partially packed. Backpacks in the car and shoes by the door. Please pray for me!

Since bedtime is quickly approaching I am going to be settled in what I have done today. Baby steps are enough for me! My heart feels so refreshed and excited with what I am accomplishing. Something I learned a while back..."The will of God will never take you where the grace of God will not protect you" It is God's will that I have the desires of my heart and that is to have a simple happy life. His grace will protect me from myself when I try to sabotage my plan (like the way I twisted that to fit my personal agenda?)...


PS...anyone know of a simple way to write a budget??

Sunday, January 1, 2012

"New" Year's Day

Is it a coincidence that January 1st was named "New" Years Day? I don't think so. As I was thinking about this today, I got to thinking about how awesome it is that I can go into this "New" year knowing that my God makes all things "New". One of the new things that my heart is yearning for in 2012 and going on forever is simplicity. I just read the blog of a friend and she said that the holy spirit has been whispering "Limitless" to her and I wanted to jump and shout because her limitless is my simplicity. I have been praying about this since I found myself at a crossroads not knowing what I wanted to do with my life. My days were passing by me with nothing to show. The same ol' monotony was eating at me from the inside out. God started showing me it was not the monotony that was getting to me. It was the fear of chaos and failure that was holding me back. I can have an amazing, fun-filled, action packed life that is full of simplicity. NO CHAOS! Maybe some failure but that's ok. Yea God, that sounds like a plan!!! Let's do this!

So, here is where I am...
I have spent the last month of my life talking to God about all of things that consume me. Things that I want to be different but am scared to tackle. Here is what I have come up with...
1. My House
2. My Job
3. My Car (or lack of LOL)
4. My Finances (holy cow my finances)
5. My Relationships
6. My Kids (the morning routine is enough to make a nun cuss)
7. My Schedule
8. The Race (code word for something else that will follow in detail)
9. My marriage
10.My Health
11.My Hobbies (wait, what hobbies? EXACTLY)
12. My Education
13. My Priorities

Now these things are not in any particular order and it's funny that this is the order that they come to mind which is why I had to add a #13 because reading over these and the order in which I listed shows a mix up in priorities huh? goal, my hope, my desire is to take each catagory and find a way for God to show me how I can simplify each area so that I have such clarity and love of life that I take the world by storm. It's gonna take discipline but I want to do all things on purpose! Get ready folks...Here I come!!

PS...any suggestions, advice, help, guidance, etc would be greatly appreciated!!