The Church, My LGBT Story, and How Love Really Wins

The Church, My LGBT Story, and How Love Really Wins

I am in a unique position today. As I read and hear opinions from opposing sides of the Supreme Court’s decision on same sex marriage, my heart gets it…from both sides. My position is unique because I identified myself as a lesbian and was part of the LGBT community for several years, yet I am now married to a wonderful man and together we have a beautiful son.

I would like to apologize for Christians who are not acting like Christians towards the LGBT community. It is not anyone’s job to condemn. God’s word tells us we have ALL fallen short of the glory of God. I have no right or authority to consider myself better or more righteous than anyone else. For it is by God’s grace alone that I have been saved, through faith, which is not of myself. It is a gift of God so that I cannot boast for what I’ve done (Ephesians 2:10).

My Story

Because of my own past, I believe I have a great understanding of the hearts of those who are living within the LGBT community. When I read their thoughts, I totally get it, and my heart aches. They just want to be heard and want to love the person they love. They want that love recognized just as heterosexual love is recognized. They can’t help the way they were born. They didn’t choose it, it chose them. What is wrong with loving someone? After all…GOD. IS. LOVE. He CREATED it! Those are the same thoughts and words that came out of my mouth for several years. I knew I was born gay. I was the girl who hated wearing dresses and begged my mom for a San Diego Charger’s football uniform when I was 6 years old. My favorite thing to do was play tackle football, turn my G.I. Joe men into ruthless warriors, beat the boys in sports, walk, talk, and dress like a little dude. I was all “boy” yet I was still a girl.

So I get where the LGBT community is coming from because I was once a huge part of it. I lived the lesbian lifestyle for years and appreciated and valued everything it stands for. To this day, I have many LGBT friends and I adore them because they are beautiful people on the inside and out. Several have been in long lasting loving relationships with one another and have exemplified a strong commitment to each other for years. I believe it is possible to do that. But I also believe there’s more to it than that.

When it comes to my own personal journey as a lesbian, my parents and friends knew about it and I was free to live how I wanted to live. But something happened to me. I had developed into an alcoholic. I started going to Alcoholics Anonymous and was in and out of A.A. for a few years until I finally came to a place of complete brokenness and surrender. It was there that I began to rely on God in every moment of my life in order to stay sober. My sponsor in A.A. recommended not dating anyone while getting sober so that I wouldn’t shift my dependency from alcohol over to another person. She was well aware of how I identified myself and loved and accepted me anyway. I’ll forever be grateful for that. Her main concern was that I focused on God and healing. I didn’t dream where it would take me, but I knew it was working. I was staying sober. It was through that sobriety that I started discovering things about myself that I had never looked at before…ways I viewed men and women.

I saw great strength and power in the male gender and that’s what I wanted to possess. But I also rejected men because I didn’t trust, respect, or value them because of what I had witnessed in my life, different ways men had devalued women. I vowed that would not happen to me and I saw no use for men. I knew I could be successful without a man and would never have to deal with being hurt by one.

Then there was the other part of me that never felt good enough as a female. I rejected many facets of my femininity because I equated them with weakness. I held onto some of those feminine traits because I didn’t want to embarrass my family, or those traits didn’t show too much weakness, or they gave me power in some way. I came to rely on those qualities for success in many areas of my life. But when I saw women that possessed qualities I lacked, I was attracted to them…qualities that were nurturing, gentle, vulnerable, loving, feminine, and beautiful. When I received attention from those females it made me feel important. The more attention I could receive, the more value I felt within myself. Plus, it was easier. I clicked easily with women because they thought, in many ways, the same way I did…because they were women. Also, I TRUSTED women. They were SAFE. That connection also made me feel validated because of that internal rejection within myself about my own femininity. Plus, women were loyal. Not so self-seeking as I believed men to be. And I would be the protector and strong one…the one always in control.

biblepicAs I continued my journey in staying sober and focusing on God, He began softening my heart towards men. As I grew in Him and my heart began healing, I was able to forgive men that I witnessed hurting others. I also made amends with men that I myself hurt and used for my own selfish gain. As that process continued I began to value men and see how special they really are and how they complement women just as women complement men. I also had the gift of witnessing Godly men around me who were amazing husbands to their wives. They displayed the biblical view of how a husband is to treat his wife. I saw their wives displaying Godly character as well towards their husbands. I couldn’t believe it, my thoughts were changing. My respect and value in men and in marriage began increasing. Along with that, I began to see myself as God sees me. The more I understood who He is, the more I understood who I am in Him. I am fearfully and wonderfully made, the daughter of the One True King. Beautiful. Radiant.

God’s Plan

I began to realize that God created men and women to BOTH serve a great purpose. We were BOTH CREATED IN HIS IMAGE, and TOGETHER, when unified with one another, we represent the full of image of God and His relationship with us. That was such a new revelation to me. I never fully understood that until I began to study His word.

Genesis 1:27 “So God created man in his own image, in the image of God he created him; male and female he created them.”

A little later in Genesis 2:24, God says, “a man will leave his father and mother and be united to his wife, and they will become one flesh.”

Marriage is an earthly tangible example of God displayed among us. It also shows the beauty of how much He loves us and wants to dwell among us because He is going through US to represent HIM. God created love so that we could experience Him and use that experience to glorify Him. The way we glorify Him is using love the way He intended it to be used…to represent Him.

In Matthew 19:4, Jesus was talking to Pharisees about questions they had regarding divorce. Although the supreme court’s decision does not pertain to divorce but to same sex marriage, Jesus is reaffirming God’s divine creation. Jesus himself said, “Haven’t you read, that at the beginning the Creator made them male and female, and said, ‘for this reason a man will leave his father and mother and be united to his wife, and the two will become one flesh’? So they are no longer two, but ONE. Therefore, what God has joined together, let man not separate.”

This was a very powerful statement by Jesus because He not only reaffirmed what God said hundreds of years prior, but he excluded any deviation from God’s original design by clearly stating man and woman. There’s no other way around that statement. He didn’t say, “A man will leave his mother and father and be united with the person he loves.” Jesus was/is all knowing because He was/is the Son of God. He knew what was to come in the future and that there would be this concept of sexual orientation. All He has to say is a man will be united with his wife and that excludes all other forms of two people becoming one flesh, and that’s exactly what He said.

There is also another divine representation of marriage that absolutely cannot be dismissed. A repeated theme occurs throughout the bible referring to the church as the bride of Christ and as Christ as the bridegroom.

A marriage between a man and woman represents the love between Christ and the church, where He gave himself up for her.

In Ephesians Chapter 5, Paul is talking to husbands and wives. He reaffirms just as Jesus did, as he repeats the scripture in Genesis stating “For this reason, man will leave his father and mother and be united to his wife and the two will become one flesh.” Then Paul goes on to say, “This is a profound mystery, but I am talking about Christ and the Church.”

And in Revelation 21, this chapter refers to the coming wedding between Christ, the bridegroom, and the church, His bride.

Marriage is the communion WITH God and the image OF God and the symbolic representation of His Son Jesus’ loving union with the church, His people. This is a repeated theme throughout the bible.

Any of us can deviate from God’s sexual design in many other ways other than just homosexuality. God has given us free will to do so. The terms “hetersosexual, homosexual, transgender, and many other forms of gender identity or sexual orientation that exist, are all man made terms. God made us sexual beings who, when unified, were meant to represent Him and His relationship with us. We must be careful to respect The Artist’s design. Afterall, HE created US.

Jesus paid a price so that we could live free of shame and condemnation so that we could be of service to God. Because of that, I can live in a peace and freedom that allows me to love others just as He loves us. Loving Him also means obeying Him and respecting His word because God IS the word.

John 1:1 “In the beginning was the Word, and the word was with God, and the Word was God”

Jesus said, “If anyone loves me, he will keep my word, and my Father will love him, and we will come to him and make our home with him.” John 14:23

Love Really Wins

edgeofrockoverwoodsIf we love Him, we will desire to keep His word. We will not be perfect in doing so because we are sinners incapable of living out a perfect life. That’s why we need Him in our lives. That’s why He gives us grace and His mercies are made new every morning. I personally will mess up every day. But as I put Him first in my life, He continues to transform different parts of me into the likeness of Him. That’s why I need Him in my life daily. He IS my daily bread. I cannot be transformed without Him. Apart from Him, I can do nothing according to His will, because apart from Him, I am a sinner and will carry out every sin I want. Today, I want Him to be my daily bread because I have experienced how good He is. The fruit of putting Him first in my life is by far greater than any other way I have ever lived.

Jesus sat at the table and dined with sinners hoping they would see something different in Him, something better, something especially beautiful, and choose His way over their own. That’s what He wants us to do today.

If you are a skeptic or not a believer in Christ Jesus as the son of God, what I’m saying may not resonate with you. God’s word tells me this in 1 Corinthians 2:14, “The man without the Spirit does not accept the things that come from the Spirit of God, for they are foolishness to him, and he cannot understand them, because they are spiritually discerned.” I highly recommend you research the word of God. The more I have studied Him, the more I understand His divine plan on this earth and the more His Sovereignty astounds me.

Today, I sit here blown away by the work God has done in my life. Ten years ago, I would never have imagined I would be sitting here writing these words about who God is and how He has transformed my life. There are many moments, especially as I cook dinner with my husband or enjoy the sweet embrace of my son’s hugs that melt me to no end, I shake my head in disbelief. He can do the same in yours if you let Him.

If you are in disagreement with how God has designed marriage, please know that I love you in the midst of our disagreement. I realize this post may cause me to lose friends simply because of my stance on marriage. I hope that’s not the case. I’m not here to stir up trouble. I’m here to kick it and experience life to the fullest. For me that consists of being transformed into the likeness of Christ so that others may know Him through my example. He loves and because I love Him and want to be like Him, I love too. That means you’re included because He loves you and therefore, so do I.

Love. Really. Does. Win.

Signature_Christy

Lord, Help Me Not Forget

Lord, Help Me Not Forget

Well, IT came back again today. IT surprises me almost every time. Most of the time I don’t even realize it’s there until it’s too late. When I finally figure out what has happened, the damage has been done.

Earlier today, I was feeling rock solid. High on life. High on God. Lovin’ it all. I was in the “God Zone.” Lovin’ people, ShineGrace Hills (2)shakin’ hands, kissin’ babies, holdin’ puppies and baby chicks, laughin’ with friends, encouraging the discouraged, trying to win the fight in saving northern white rhinos and ivory billed woodpeckers. I was paying for strangers’ meals and for everyone’s postage at the post office.

So maybe my “God Zone” wasn’t quite that big, BUT… the bottom line is, I felt pretty untouchable today. Joy was oozing out.

Then, this evening, before I even realized it, that fun-loving “God Zone” girl disappeared. It all started when I came home and saw the laundry piled up on my bed in the bedroom. Next I realized there wasn’t much food in the fridge and I REALLY should have gone to the store. As I passed by the bedroom mirror, I reminded myself of my weight gain since my son was born. While putting clothes away in my closet, I began thinking about the things I wish I had but don’t. Then my 2 yr. old son wanted to eat a package of m&m’s and after I said no, he fell onto the floor crying with his best Oscar performance to date. While at the height of his tantrum, I just stared at him thinking, “Is there a noble cause I should be fulfilling at this very moment? Am I missing it?”

Walking to the office to pay bills, I passed photos in the hallway and started wishing my entire group of family and friends got along wonderfully and no one was getting a divorce, in jail, on drugs and alcohol, or dying. After paying bills, I was reminded once again how fast our money goes. I knew my husband would be home soon and began wondering why he couldn’t read my mind with the telepathic signals I sent his way every day. I wished my sonic vanilla coke didn’t have any calories in it, and all the pollen in the world didn’t exist so I could finally stop sneezing!

One thought followed another about what I didn’t have, what I should have, what I deserve, who should do what I thought they should do or not do, etc. It was an ugly snowball that kept rolling and growing. That joyous outlook on life that I had earlier in the day had completely shifted in just under an hour!

The side effects of that shift consisted of sharp words and impatience with both my husband and my son. I went from feeling full of life to feeling depressed, frustrated, and lonely in my pity party. I even got ticked off at the lucky charm box because it was empty and still on the shelf. Is it that difficult to throw it in the trash two feet away?!

FORGETTING. That’s the IT I’m talkin’ about. That’s the big IT in my life that always sneaks up on me when I least expect it. When I finally notice, the damage has been done. I’ve hurt someone by doing or saying something that is mean spirited and certainly not of God.

That’s why I have to be extra careful about remembering God’s goodness in my life. In a short moment, I can forget, and my self-centeredness will take over. Before I know it, I’m not resembling the God who has taught me what love looks like.

This isn’t anything new of course. In Romans Chapter 1, Paul was talking to the Christians in Rome about this very thing. He said,

“For although they knew God, they neither glorified him as God nor gave thanks to him, but their thinking became futile and their foolish hearts were darkened.”

Paul goes on to talk about how their darkened hearts led to greater sin. In my case, in just an hour, I forgot the blessings God has given me. I didn’t honor him and in that short hour I already had lost sight of His goodness. I was ungrateful. I FORGOT. water

This is a reminder of why we are to pray without ceasing and give thanks continuously.

In 1 Thessalonians 5:17, we are told…

“Pray continually, give thanks in all circumstances, for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus.”

Keeping in touch with God in prayer and through His word helps us to remain in the vine (in Christ). As long as we are in the vine, we are producing fruit and showing others God’s love.

In John 15:5 Jesus himself said,

“I am the vine; you are the branches. If a man remains in me and I in him, he will bear much fruit, apart from me you can do nothing.”

And in John 15:8,

“This is to my Father’s glory, that you bear much fruit, showing yourselves to be my disciples.”

The fruit he is talking about is the fruit of the spirit (Galations 5:22), which is “love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self control.”

It’s that fruit that makes an impact for God. It’s the fruit that makes us ooze with joy like I was earlier in the day. It’s the fruit that softens a heart and prevents sin from rearing its’ ugly head. It’s the fruit that makes people notice who God is, the fruit that changes EVERYTHING.

I pray that tomorrow I don’t forget what God has done for me. Not only will it change the outcome of my day, but with God involved, it has the potential to change someone else’ day too…maybe even someone’s life…for eternity.

Christy

5 Reasons I Love Rebellion

5 Reasons I Love Rebellion

Rebellion is a word, in some ways, I can get really excited about. In other ways, not so much. My mind goes in two different directions when I think about this powerful word. It brings back many memories of my teenage and college years and most of my 20’s. It reminds me of when I lied to my parents and coaches about drinking and smoking, or when I used my fake ID to get into that rockin’ nightclub, or when I completely made up a new name for the cop when he was asking me who I was. Basically, just doing whatever I wanted to do, not caring about the consequences. In my mind, I was livin’ the “rebel dream”… my idea of what a rebel was supposed to be…and it was awesome.

That type of rebellion is EASY though. It obviously required very little thinking on my part. I thought, “If it looks like fun or makes me feel really good, I’ll try it.”

Today I look at rebellion in a new light that is much more meaningful and powerful! I’m talkin’ about rebellion where the IMG_5745stakes are raised, bringing it to a whole new level. It isn’t for the weak. It can only be acted out by those with great strength. It requires a BOLDNESS. a COURAGE, a HARD CORE mindset. STANDING UP REGARDLESS OF ANYTHING OR ANYONE WHO IS TRYING TO KNOCK ME DOWN. STRAIGHT UP FIERCENESS! Now that’s what makes the term rebellion take on a much heavier weight and purpose…and it’s HARD TO DO. This is what separates the girls from the women, the boys from the men.

This type will go against the grain of society…against the norm of our “it’s all about me” culture in order to make HIM known.

The apostle Paul talks about the last days in 2 Timothy 3:1-5,

“But understand this, that in the last days there will come times of difficulty. For people will be lovers of self, lovers of money, proud, arrogant, abusive, disobedient to their parents, ungrateful, unholy, heartless, unappeasable, slanderous, without self-control, brutal, not loving good, treacherous, reckless, swollen with conceit, lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God, having the appearance of godliness but denying its’ power.”

I think it’s safe to say that we are in this era that Paul is talking about in this passage. If I have a moment where I ignore God’s guidance, I can easily fall into any one of Paul’s descriptions.

Paul himself admitted this same struggle. He said in Romans 7:21:

“When I want to do good, evil is right there with me.”

He goes on to talk further about the war that rages in his mind of good vs. evil. Just like Paul, my sin nature is raging war against me all the time. This very reason is why this type of rebellion is at a whole new level. I will say, the hardest things I do often become the most fulfilling. And rebelling for Jesus is at the top of my list. I will certainly admit, I’m not perfect at it, but because I’ve tasted how good it is, it’s the only kind of rebelling I want to do.

Here’s why:

1. It’s where I grow the most. – It’s a day to day dependence on Him. I have to lay my ego down. This is what makes it hard and GREAT all at the same time! As I depend on Him through His word and in prayer, he transforms my thinking and my heart. Wisdom seeps in and He begins to guide my life.

“BLESSED are those who find wisdom, those who gain understanding, for wisdom is more profitable than silver and yields better returns that gold.” – Proverbs 3:13-14

2. It’s the most satisfying and fulfilling. – It’s a level where peace transcends all understanding no matter my circumstances, a level where I can have joy like a child, where I am fulfilled in a way that I no longer have to keep searching. I’m content. I’m secure. Because of that security, I have the strength to be BOLD, COURAGEOUS, and FIERCE…FOR HIM.

“Then Jesus declared, I am the bread of life. Whoever comes to me will never go hungry, and whoever believes in me will never be thirsty.” –John 6:35

“Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness, for they will be filled” – Matthew 5:6

3. I’m FREE. – Every “Rebel” wants to be free! Paul said it best in Romans 8:1 “the law of the Spirit of Life sets me free from the law of sin and death.” I no longer am locked up in guilt or shame because of my sins. Jesus took care of that when He died on the cross for me…and YOU. Letting go of all that junk releases me to do the work He has for me while on this earth. If I’m fulfilling my purpose for Him, He is glorified and I am satisfied.

4. I’m guaranteed eternal life. No matter what happens to me on earth, I know I have a place with Him for eternity. Is there really a greater gift than that? I’m talkin’ ETERNITY!! That’s what this type of rebellion brings! C’MON!! Can I get a Hallelujah?

“For God so loved the world that He gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.” –John 3:16.IMG_8333

5. I’m not alone.Annnnd…that’s the POINT. He wants me to choose HIM. Jesus is my strength in the war.

“The Lord is my light and my salvation, whom shall I fear? The Lord is the STRENGTH of my life-of whom shall I be afraid?” -Psalm 27:1.

He wants to show me what He can do in me and through me, which is what I could never do on my own. That’s the strength that brings this rebellion to a whole new level. It can’t be matched by ANYONE or ANYTHING. Therefore, if I want to win, I must have Him in my life. And let’s get real, I don’t like being alone. With Him, I never am.

BOLDNESS. COURAGE. That HARD CORE mindset. STANDING UP REGARDLESS OF ANYTHING OR ANYONE WHO IS TRYING TO KNOCK ME DOWN. STRAIGHT UP FIERCENESS. THIS kind of rebellion is an exciting way to live and that’s why I love it! My hope is that you too will be a rebel with me.

God bless,

Christy

Surprising Discovery on Valentine’s Day

Surprising Discovery on Valentine’s Day

It took me years and years and YEARS to ever really appreciate this holiday we call Valentine’s Day. From my past experience, it has been nothing but a disappointment…why? Well, let’s examine where the heartache could be rooted. My memories include: getting a charming card…instead of chocolate, a stuffed bear…instead of chocolate, gorgeous flowers…instead of chocolate, or receiving nothing at all…which means once again…yep…no chocolate. I believe the root of my disappointment simply stems from the lack of chocolate provided during this “chocolate holiday.” When I really examine it further though, I realize, there actually was chocolate involved in most of those cases. So how did I miss it? Well…it wasn’t ENOUGH chocolate. Therefore, for me, it goes into the “no chocolate” category. Anyone that knows me, can attest that chocolate is one of my favorite and greatest weaknesses. If it’s in the room…I will be sitting near the bowl that the chocolate is in, or I will have the bowl in my lap…or…if the bowl is big enough, I might even be sitting IN the bowl. 😉

Of course, I hope you know I’m being a bit facetious here. I know Valentine’s Day isn’t all about me, and it’s certainly not all about me receiving chocolate. I fully understand that it’s an added opportunity for us to give and show that special someone in our lives a little extra love and/or romance. But I can’t help but face the hard truth that I can easily make it all about me and it can happen fast.

Selfish love. That’s basically what I’m talking about here…loving someone with the expectation that I’ll receive, at least to some degree and in some form, love back. We all want to be loved right? What’s so wrong about that? I’ll give love to you, and then you give love back to me…right? This can certainly work and it does in a GAZILLION cases (is gazillion even a word?).

I’m finally realizing that this kind of love is just scratching the surface of what it’s REALLY supposed to be about. I believe I was created to love in a much deeper, greater way that can be even more fulfilling than the basic love I mentioned above. How? It’s when I turn that selfish love into Christ’s love.Untitled Of course, I can’t do that without Christ. I have to Know Him in order to love like Him. He’s the one who created this whole love thing in the first place. Without Him, I just love the best I know how, which usually includes those subconscious selfish needs wanting to be met, whether I even realize it or not.

I’m talking about that crazy supernatural love of Christ that doesn’t look to get anything back…EVER. It’s so good that it can soften a heart that has been hardened for years, give peace to a grieving parent who has lost a child, take a person in full blown addiction into a new life of freedom, cast out any and all fears, forgive and restore abusers who have destroyed lives…THAT kind of love. It’s in a league of its’ own!

I’ve come to realize that the more I know who He is, the more capable I am of loving like He loves. To do this, I have to stay close to him. It’s learning about His character through His word, asking Him to guide my every move, being still and listening, and most importantly – placing HIM before anyone or anything else in my life. If I do those things, He shows up in me and loves through me. Then…and only then…I start to love without those expectations, because I’m loving others for Christ, and not for myself.

One of the most surprising blessings of all of this is that it’s the most fulfilling love I have ever experienced.Who would’ve thought selfless love would be the most fulfilling love? Christ thought of it. It’s His design and that’s why it works.

“Then Jesus declared, ‘I am the bread of life. He who comes to me will never go hungry, and he who believes in me will never be thirsty.’” – John 6:35.

That’s what God wants to do with all of us. He wants us to experience His love and through that, lives will be transformed, INCLUDING OUR OWN.

“Blessed are the pure in heart, for they will see God.” Matthew 5:8

So, as I sit here reflecting back on the lack of chocolate I’ve received over the years and the past disappointing Valentine’s Days I’ve “suffered” through, I laugh because of how much I have missed the mark. Today, I have a new and different perspective on February 14th. It’s another chance to celebrate the love, in its’ purest form, that has been freely given to me by THE creator of the universe, a love that fulfills me unlike any other love I could experience on my own.  And the best part… it’s never-ending. It’s ETERNAL!

“For God so loved the world that he gave His only son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish, but have eternal life.” –John 3:16

My Valentine’s gift exceeds anything I could ever ask or imagine. I hope you too will get to experience Valentine’s Day in a new light this year. There’s no better way to experience it than with Him.

Christy

 

I would like to join in Paul’s prayer in Ephesians 1:17-19 and pray this for you…

I pray that God of our Lord Jesus Christ, the glorious Father, may give you the Spirit of wisdom and revelation, so that you may know Him better. I pray also that the eyes of your heart be enlightened in order that you may know the hope to which he has called you, the riches of his glorious inheritance in the saints, and his incomparably great power for us who believe.” Amen.

NEW YORK OPENING

NEW YORK OPENING

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Curabitur quam lorem, cursus in convallis at, pulvinar quis sem. Integer porttitor ornare purus, vel efficitur ligula cursus vitae. Aliquam erat volutpat. Nulla eu tortor a dolor sodales suscipit. Donec interdum magna ut orci tempus, non porttitor nulla dapibus. Praesent in tristique ex. Suspendisse ut lacinia orci, ut feugiat lorem. Sed rhoncus, lorem et sodales accumsan, urna ipsum cursus mauris, aliquam tincidunt nisl mauris at mi. Quisque elit nisi, auctor id lectus et, ultricies auctor ligula. Vivamus semper quam id eros semper finibus. Fusce rutrum id nibh vitae dapibus. Sed lacus massa, dictum eget nulla iaculis, vehicula volutpat metus. Morbi mattis aliquet tincidunt. Suspendisse cursus interdum felise ultrices.

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1,000,000 VISITS

1,000,000 VISITS

Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit. Vestibulum sollicitudin eu magna ut sollicitudin. Maecenas eu turpis enim. Phasellus sapien ligula, suscipit non urna elementum, dignissim accumsan mauris. Duis bibendum purus vitae purus scelerisque, ut mollis purus luctus. Vestibulum at auctor urna. Nam facilisis, justo ac pellentesque faucibus, libero magna congue tortor, eu varius ante nisi ac risus.

Cras feugiat, nisi non auctor eleifend, elit lorem laoreet erat, facilisis suscipit neque sadips ipsum sem eu ex.

Curabitur quam lorem, cursus in convallis at, pulvinar quis sem. Integer porttitor ornare purus, vel efficitur ligula cursus vitae. Aliquam erat volutpat. Nulla eu tortor a dolor sodales suscipit. Donec interdum magna ut orci tempus, non porttitor nulla dapibus. Praesent in tristique ex. Suspendisse ut lacinia orci, ut feugiat lorem. Sed rhoncus, lorem et sodales accumsan, urna ipsum cursus mauris, aliquam tincidunt nisl mauris at mi. Quisque elit nisi, auctor id lectus et, ultricies auctor ligula. Vivamus semper quam id eros semper finibus. Fusce rutrum id nibh vitae dapibus. Sed lacus massa, dictum eget nulla iaculis, vehicula volutpat metus. Morbi mattis aliquet tincidunt. Suspendisse cursus interdum felise ultrices.

Integer eu velit efficitur, placerat magna ac, malesuada risus. Interdum et malesuada fames ac ante ipsum primis in faucibus. Morbi rutrum augue orci, non bibendum nisi ultricies at. Pellentesque pharetra, nibh vel faucibus elementum, ligula magna congue lacus, et interdum est purus a ligula. Aliquam maximus, eros tincidunt convallis euismod, magna tellus placerat arcu, et consectetur lacus ipsum ac arcu. Maecenas ultrices lectus risus, eget sollicitudin erat facilisis in. Nullam fermentum eget sem sit amet pellentesque. Nunc rhoncus interdum lorem ac lobortis.

EXCLUSIVE COFFEE

EXCLUSIVE COFFEE

Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit. Vestibulum sollicitudin eu magna ut sollicitudin. Maecenas eu turpis enim. Phasellus sapien ligula, suscipit non urna elementum, dignissim accumsan mauris. Duis bibendum purus vitae purus scelerisque, ut mollis purus luctus. Vestibulum at auctor urna. Nam facilisis, justo ac pellentesque faucibus, libero magna congue tortor, eu varius ante nisi ac risus.

Cras feugiat, nisi non auctor eleifend, elit lorem laoreet erat, facilisis suscipit neque sadips ipsum sem eu ex.

Curabitur quam lorem, cursus in convallis at, pulvinar quis sem. Integer porttitor ornare purus, vel efficitur ligula cursus vitae. Aliquam erat volutpat. Nulla eu tortor a dolor sodales suscipit. Donec interdum magna ut orci tempus, non porttitor nulla dapibus. Praesent in tristique ex. Suspendisse ut lacinia orci, ut feugiat lorem. Sed rhoncus, lorem et sodales accumsan, urna ipsum cursus mauris, aliquam tincidunt nisl mauris at mi. Quisque elit nisi, auctor id lectus et, ultricies auctor ligula. Vivamus semper quam id eros semper finibus. Fusce rutrum id nibh vitae dapibus. Sed lacus massa, dictum eget nulla iaculis, vehicula volutpat metus. Morbi mattis aliquet tincidunt. Suspendisse cursus interdum felise ultrices.

Integer eu velit efficitur, placerat magna ac, malesuada risus. Interdum et malesuada fames ac ante ipsum primis in faucibus. Morbi rutrum augue orci, non bibendum nisi ultricies at. Pellentesque pharetra, nibh vel faucibus elementum, ligula magna congue lacus, et interdum est purus a ligula. Aliquam maximus, eros tincidunt convallis euismod, magna tellus placerat arcu, et consectetur lacus ipsum ac arcu. Maecenas ultrices lectus risus, eget sollicitudin erat facilisis in. Nullam fermentum eget sem sit amet pellentesque. Nunc rhoncus interdum lorem ac lobortis.

PACIFIC OPENING

PACIFIC OPENING

Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit. Vestibulum sollicitudin eu magna ut sollicitudin. Maecenas eu turpis enim. Phasellus sapien ligula, suscipit non urna elementum, dignissim accumsan mauris. Duis bibendum purus vitae purus scelerisque, ut mollis purus luctus. Vestibulum at auctor urna. Nam facilisis, justo ac pellentesque faucibus, libero magna congue tortor, eu varius ante nisi ac risus.

Cras feugiat, nisi non auctor eleifend, elit lorem laoreet erat, facilisis suscipit neque sadips ipsum sem eu ex.

Curabitur quam lorem, cursus in convallis at, pulvinar quis sem. Integer porttitor ornare purus, vel efficitur ligula cursus vitae. Aliquam erat volutpat. Nulla eu tortor a dolor sodales suscipit. Donec interdum magna ut orci tempus, non porttitor nulla dapibus. Praesent in tristique ex. Suspendisse ut lacinia orci, ut feugiat lorem. Sed rhoncus, lorem et sodales accumsan, urna ipsum cursus mauris, aliquam tincidunt nisl mauris at mi. Quisque elit nisi, auctor id lectus et, ultricies auctor ligula. Vivamus semper quam id eros semper finibus. Fusce rutrum id nibh vitae dapibus. Sed lacus massa, dictum eget nulla iaculis, vehicula volutpat metus. Morbi mattis aliquet tincidunt. Suspendisse cursus interdum felise ultrices.

Integer eu velit efficitur, placerat magna ac, malesuada risus. Interdum et malesuada fames ac ante ipsum primis in faucibus. Morbi rutrum augue orci, non bibendum nisi ultricies at. Pellentesque pharetra, nibh vel faucibus elementum, ligula magna congue lacus, et interdum est purus a ligula. Aliquam maximus, eros tincidunt convallis euismod, magna tellus placerat arcu, et consectetur lacus ipsum ac arcu. Maecenas ultrices lectus risus, eget sollicitudin erat facilisis in. Nullam fermentum eget sem sit amet pellentesque. Nunc rhoncus interdum lorem ac lobortis.

Am I Enough?

Am I Enough?

As I sit tucked away in the corner of my favorite coffee shop, I’m in the midst of one of my guilty pleasures…people watching. Scanning the room I see the young college student in his jeans and t-shirt chillin’ by the window, sipping his cup of coffee, and zoned out with his earbuds while his books sit untouched. Then at the big table in the center of the room is the group of housewives dressed in the latest fashion chatting about the best restaurants in town. Over at the private corner table are the two older women who have met to talk about something deeper as one of them leans in toward the other to hold her hand and comforts her.

Then all of a sudden…time stops…SHE WALKS IN…the woman whose appearance is close to perfect. She’s wearing the latest designer heels, has seemingly perfect legs, a skirt that shapes her as if it was tailored only for her, every hair on her head is in the right place, her flawless skin and commercial smile cause everyone in the room to take notice for at least a second but for most, longer than a second. She acts like she doesn’t even notice or care that she grabbed the attention of close to everyone in the coffee shop. She scans the menu like it’s an average day and an average moment for her. I sit there in awe thinking, what would that be like?

It’s THAT type of woman that starts to mess with my head. Why? Because I know I’ll never be like that. I’m on the opposite end of the spectrum from THAT woman. If I could, I would wear t-shirt and jeans, tennis shoes, and a ball cap every day for the rest of my life. And most days, I do! When I see women like that, I start to cut myself down, how I fall short of what our world tells us is beautiful. She oozes femininity and beauty….what a woman is supposed to be like, right? As if flipping a switch, I quickly fall into the trap of feeling “not enough.”

But then my spirit gently reminds me, there’s good news for women “like me”…God makes clear in His word about who I am! Believe it or not, today I’m grateful I’m not THAT woman in the coffee shop. Why?

1. BECAUSE HE KNOWS MY NAME– Let me state that again…DSC_0019

THE CREATOR OF THE UNIVERSE KNOWS MY NAME. He knows tomboy Christy from Arkansas. From the beginning of time to eternity, He knows ME. I can hardly wrap my head around that fact alone. God took time out of His busy schedule and thought about ME…down to every intricate detail of my being.

Psalm 139:13-14 says, “For you created my inmost being, you knit me  together in my mother’s womb. I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made, your works are wonderful, I know that full well.” Vs16 “Your eyes saw my unformed body. All the days ordained for me were written in Your book before one of them came to be.”

And in Matthew 10:30 – Jesus says, “even the very hairs of your head are all numbered.”

In Isaiah 43:1The Lord says, “Fear not, for I have redeemed you; I have summoned you by name; you are mine.”

2. I AM CHOSEN and I AM HIS CHILD– The mere facts that HE CHOSE ME and calls me HIS CHILD makes my stock go UP…and up FAST!

1 Peter 2:9 says, “But you are a chosen people, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, a people belonging to God, that you may declare the praises of him who called you out of darkness into his wonderful light.”

I am a child of the King Romans 8:16 says“The spirit himself testifies with our spirit that we are God’s children.”

To me, there’s nothing more valuable in this world than God calling me His child. He is declaring I am His and I get to be with Him for eternity. There is no greater gift or VALUE than that!

John 3:16 “For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only son, that whoever believes in him, shall not perish but have eternal life.”

3. GOD HAS GIVEN ME SPECIFIC GIFTS and TALENTS I have a specific role designed by God to carry out for His purpose! That role was set up way before I ever came on the scene.

1 Corinthians 12:4-7 says, There are different kinds of gifts, but the same spirit. There are different kinds of service, but the same Lord. There are different kinds of working, but the same God works all of them in all men. NOW TO EACH ONE the manifestation of the spirit is given for the common good.”

destroyer Ephesians 2:10 says, For we are God’s workmanship, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do.”

God designed me with specific gifts for HIS PURPOSE. THAT woman in the coffee shop can’t fulfill what I’m supposed to fulfill. I’m designed to fulfill a completely different role for His Kingdom than she is, and she is designed to fulfill a role tailored specifically for her as well.

I’m grateful I’m not THAT woman. God knows my name, He has given me gifts and a role specifically tailored to ME, and He has chosen ME in ADVANCE to do those works, and above all, I AM HIS, a child of the one True King.

Bravegirl Jennifer says, “A woman’s armor comes in all designs.” Today, I like God’s design of me. I don’t want to dismiss, criticize, or compare His workmanship any longer. God’s word says we are “fearfully and wonderfully made.” Thank you God for creating ME. Thank you God for creating the person reading this right now. I urge you, reader, to dwell on these scriptures so that you don’t forget how amazing you are. You’re amazing because God created YOU. You are here because He CHOSE YOU to be here for this particular time in history for this generation. You have a purpose that no one can fulfill but YOU! Now THAT is amazing!

Will you join me? Will you tell God thank you for creating you? Will you ask Him how you can fulfill His design for your life? Let God show you what He can do with YOU, His workmanship, which is always enough.

God Bless,

Christy

 

 

 

 

SYDNEY OPENING

SYDNEY OPENING

Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit. Vestibulum sollicitudin eu magna ut sollicitudin. Maecenas eu turpis enim. Phasellus sapien ligula, suscipit non urna elementum, dignissim accumsan mauris. Duis bibendum purus vitae purus scelerisque, ut mollis purus luctus. Vestibulum at auctor urna. Nam facilisis, justo ac pellentesque faucibus, libero magna congue tortor, eu varius ante nisi ac risus.

Cras feugiat, nisi non auctor eleifend, elit lorem laoreet erat, facilisis suscipit neque sadips ipsum sem eu ex.

Curabitur quam lorem, cursus in convallis at, pulvinar quis sem. Integer porttitor ornare purus, vel efficitur ligula cursus vitae. Aliquam erat volutpat. Nulla eu tortor a dolor sodales suscipit. Donec interdum magna ut orci tempus, non porttitor nulla dapibus. Praesent in tristique ex. Suspendisse ut lacinia orci, ut feugiat lorem. Sed rhoncus, lorem et sodales accumsan, urna ipsum cursus mauris, aliquam tincidunt nisl mauris at mi. Quisque elit nisi, auctor id lectus et, ultricies auctor ligula. Vivamus semper quam id eros semper finibus. Fusce rutrum id nibh vitae dapibus. Sed lacus massa, dictum eget nulla iaculis, vehicula volutpat metus. Morbi mattis aliquet tincidunt. Suspendisse cursus interdum felise ultrices.

Integer eu velit efficitur, placerat magna ac, malesuada risus. Interdum et malesuada fames ac ante ipsum primis in faucibus. Morbi rutrum augue orci, non bibendum nisi ultricies at. Pellentesque pharetra, nibh vel faucibus elementum, ligula magna congue lacus, et interdum est purus a ligula. Aliquam maximus, eros tincidunt convallis euismod, magna tellus placerat arcu, et consectetur lacus ipsum ac arcu. Maecenas ultrices lectus risus, eget sollicitudin erat facilisis in. Nullam fermentum eget sem sit amet pellentesque. Nunc rhoncus interdum lorem ac lobortis.