As Numerousas the Stars

As Numerous as the Stars {with LinkUp}

As Numerousas the StarsBlessings and prosperity…For the Israelites, those two words meant a very large family, descendants as numerous as the stars, just for being obedient to God.Some people complain that they are living a righteous life and have never seen the rewards that God promises. I wonder…do they ever take a look at their families or are they just looking at the things they can “measure?”

God has always promised blessing for our obedience to Him and He never breaks a promise. Being obedient isn’t easy. Oh, I know it’s not easy. God knows that it’s not easy which is why He says that we will be rewarded so much for just obeying His laws.

If you read all of Psalms 128 you see how, when blessings and prosperity are talked about, it’s always in reference to family. What better blessing could you possibly get than family. I know that through my life, the best gift I have EVER gotten were my husband & children. I couldn’t even begin to think about a blessing greater than them.

When everything disappears, all that will remain is your family and God.

God could offer us ANYTHING for our obedience. He could give us money, jewels, power, riches beyond our belief, but instead, He gives us little people to take care of. Kind of sounds like a joke right?!?! The fact is…God is intrusting us with the most valuable thing He could ever give us…one of His children.

psalms 128:2

Makes your job as a parent seem a little more special now doesn’t it?

So, the next time you want to wish and hope for measurable blessings for your obedience to God, take a look at your kids and remember…you have your blessings already. You receive your gifts in the form of hugs and kisses.

There is no better gift God could give us other than that.

Go hug and kiss your kiddos and Thank God for all the good you have in your life.  Because believe me, you might think that you are lacking, but if all you have is your family, then you have the world.
Please take a minute and visit my Co-Host.  Don’t forget to link-up below!!!
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game plan

My Game Plan for Getting Fit

So…I need a little bit of accountability when it comes to my Getting Fit journey.  This isn’t just about weight loss for me it’s about getting fit.  I want to get strong.  I like muscle.  I want to be healthy…not just lose weight.

This journey has been one that I have struggled with my entire life.  I was always the kid that was bigger in school, called names, and spent my childhood being the “fat” friend in my circle of friends. I got used to it and just accepted that this was probably how how my life was going to be.

This thought pattern pretty much stayed the same until I had kids.  Then my “I’m ok the way I am” thought change into “I need to be healthier” and so this journey started.

game plan

Why do I want to lose weight and get fit?

It’s not about being a size 2 for me.  I know that I never will, nor want to be, a size 2.  This is about making sure that I am in the best health that I can possibly be.  I have kids to mother and I want to make sure that I am there for them when they are growing up and beyond.  I want a full, happy, life…one that is void of health issues that will keep me from doing the things that I want to do.  I am a country girl so I love being outdoors…I want the energy to ride horse, hike acres upon acres of land,  and play in the wonder that nature offers.

I want to LIVE not just exist.

Now, I am not saying that I am doing this just for others because that would be stupid.  I do want to change for myself.  I know that I can make a better me.

How am I going to do this?

So…you are probably saying, “well, anyone can say what they WANT to do, but how are you going to do it?”

To answer that question I will share with you my game plan.  Everyone needs a game plan right?!?!

  • Eat lean proteins, fruits, and veggies-  I have come to the realization that my body HATES bread.  Absolutely HATES bread.  I am not exactly sure why, but it does so I will stay away from them.  I love lean meat.  Oh…I am a steak girl.  I love a good steak.  But, we can’t leave out our feathered friends who taste so good grilled, broiled,  and baked.  Oh chicken….you are my second love.
  • Workout 6 days a week-  Yes, I know…you need to give yourself a little break and that’s what I am going to be doing.  One day a week.  But, the other 6 days…I will be doing weight training and cardio.  Please tell me I am not the only one out there that can’t stand cardio…there are more people like me right?  RIGHT?  Cardio is just so boring…ugh…but a necessary evil, I know.  Hey, give me some weights and I am a happy girl.  Make me so some cardio and you will have an enemy for the rest of your life.  Oh, andI can’t forget, there will be some yoga going on.  Now that’s something this girl can get into.
  • Journaling- When I was completely committed the last time I was working towards a fit body (please don’t ask what happened) I was journaling EVERYTHING and I do mean everything.  My food intake, workouts, water, and anything else that might be relevant to my progress.  So, it’s back to journaling for me.  You would be surprised at just how helpful writing down what you eat and do can be.
  • Cheat Meals- Yes, these are part of my game plan and if you are working towards a get fit goal, they should be part of your also.  We spend so much time eating healthy and working out that every once in a while, there comes a time to cheat.  It is necessary.  This way, your cravings won’t get the best of you (chocolate girl right here…the darker the better.)  The people that usually end up binging on their craving are the ones that are denying themselves all the time and not giving any room to be human.  Yes, this girl will be eating some chocolate.  Hey…dark chocolate is supposed to be good for you.  :)

So, there you have it…my game plan for how I am going to work toward a new, fit body.  Is it going to be easy…of course not.  Will it be worth it…YES, very much so!

Wanna join me?  Please do so.  I would love to hear your story and get to know you along your journey.  Leave me a comment in the section below and let’s connect.  Let’s help each other be accountable for our health!

 

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Wisdom: More Valuble Than Any Jewel {with Linkup}

Proverbs 3:13

Blessed are those who find wisdom, those who gain understanding,

 

Wisdom is THE most important thing that you could ever possess. You could have all the money, jewels, and possessions in the world, but you have nothing if you are without God’s wisdom. Only the understanding that comes from that can give you the honor, glory, and wealth that you have always dreamed of!

A lot of use spend time reading our bibles, listening to sermons, and even participating in bible studies, but do we understand all the wonderful teachings of God? Most of us just run through the motions and never take the time to really dig deep into what God has to teach us.

wisdom

His wisdom spills off the pages and into your heart if you just allow it.

Our heavenly Father wants to share all that He knows with us…do you ever stop and realize the enormity of that…The one that created the world WANTS us to have an abundance of wisdom. Not just useless knowledge, but His wisdom.

He is showing us the way to live. He is showing us the way to everlasting treasure. He is giving us the key that will open the vault to all the riches we could ever dream of.

The question is…how do we show God that we understand His teachings?
We can show Him by living a life worthy of Him. The whole saying “actions speak louder than words” wholeheartedly applies here. We can talk an amazing talk and tell the world how we are great Christians OR we can show the world.

The benefits of having wisdom…long life, wealth, honor, peace, God’s ever-present guidance, and the most important thing…an eternity with Him.

So please, don’t give way for the “false” wisdom that comes from Satan and find the TRUE wisdom that comes from the one and only…God. Make sure you are spending time with God and also remember, you can show just how much you understand God’s teaching by how you live.

Live a life that is worthy of God.

Head over to my cohosts to see what they have to say about Proverbs 3:13

A Look At the Book

Women of Worship

Raising Sticky Hands to Heaven

Linkup Grapic

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steadfast through the storms

Steadfast through the Storms {with Link-Up}

 As you know, we count as blessed those who have persevered. You have heard of Job’s perseverance and have seen what the Lord finally brought about. The Lord is full of compassion and mercy.   -James 5:11 NIV-

If we had to pick one person from the Bible to have as a mentor, I think that everyone should, at the very least, take a look at Job. He is the one person that is a perfect example of what the word perseverance is all about.

steadfast through the storms

We all have storms that we have to tend with. There are sunny days, days filled with absolute happiness, and then -SLAM- the storm moves in and we see nothing but the rain, clouds, and lightening.

I can just imagine that, if I have to go through the trials that Job has to contend with, I would not have been able to see past the drowning rain. I mean…think about it…Satan took EVERYTHING away from Job. He stripped him of all that mattered. Through everything he endured, even though he did not understand why all this was happening, he still stayed faithful to God.

Ok…it’s admission time. We have all been there. We have all questioned why certain things happen. Please be honest, if at the most, to yourself, if no one else. I know that there are times when I have questioned where the storms came from and why they were happening to me. Sometimes they feel like a hurricane and that my world is spinning out of control. Life seems like it will never calm down and the downpour will never stop.

Praise through the storm
Credit

There is sunlight at the end of the storms. It might seem like it will not come soon enough, but there is light. God would not put us through the things that he does without a plan. It’s not for us to question the plan no matter how much we want to. We are just supposed to believe that God will bring us through it.
Spend time with God during these hard times. Knowing God is better than having all the answers. If we truly know him, then we will understand that the storms are very much worth weathering.

I mean…think about it. God sacrificed his only son for us to have salvation. I think that God has weathered the ultimate storm so that we can have faith that we will make it through the “rain showers.”

I know that times will be hard and it will feel like the world is crushing you, but have faith and count your blessings instead of dwelling in the pit.

Have the perseverance of Job. If he can make it through the trials that he had to endure, then we can make it through. Just have faith that God truly has a plan, and that he has the ultimate answers. Spend your time building your relationship with Him instead of questioning…Why me???

If you are facing a storm that feels never ending and want to share, feel free to do so in the comments of this post.  I would love to hear what you have to say.

Please visit my co-host to read their wonderful insights.

A Look at the Book

Women of Worship

Raising Sticky Hands to Heaven

Linkup Grapic

And now for your favorite part. (Who am I kidding…I know you love link-ups)

 

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faith in the right place

Faith in the Right Place (with Link-Up)

Psalm 146:5

Blessed are those whose help is the God of Jacob,
whose hope is in the Lord their God.

If you are familiar with the story of Jacob then you know that he was a manipulative person. Now, is this entirely his fault…not really. His family wasn’t the greatest and his mother taught him how to get what he wanted by doing things in a creative way. But, the drawback about manipulating people into getting what you want is that you turn away from God. You have no faith that God can give you all the joy that you will ever desire.

faith in the right place

If we sit and spend time studying Jacob, what can we learn from his story? We learn that no matter who it is, whether your family or friends, there is no one on this earth that can help you find the glorious happiness that God can give you, if you just have hope through all the good and bad that He is there to show you blessing.

There is a saying that most people know…If God brings you to it, He will bring you through it.

We must place our trust in the one that is steady and infinite. The everlasting creator.

earth

God created the heavens and the earth. If He can do that, I am in awe and have no problems placing all my trust in Him, that He can bring us through all the hardships we might have to forgo.

Sure, life will seem hard. It might get harder than you ever imagine it could be. But, there is one shining beacon that stands in the distance if you just look for it. God will always be there for us. Even when we are in the pit of despair, we must always have hope, unlike Jacob, that God has a plan and will show us how incredibly joyful our lives can be.

So…praise God. Praise him even in the hardest of time. Don’t go searching for men who you THINK might be able to help you through. Search for the ONE that you KNOW can get you through the darkest of times. Worship the Lord in church, in the streets, and even in the closet.

Jacob never put his faith in the one that could offer him all the blessings that he would ever want. No, he took it upon himself to manipulate the system and ended up having to run away. He then had to wrestle with God to find that He is the ONE and ONLY, that could show him the way to everlasting joy.

We need to remember that, although it’s dark, there is still hope in the one true, God, the one that sacrificed His son so that we may have everlasting life in heaven with Him.

Please check out my Co-Host’s blogs to see what they have to say about Psalm 146:5.

A Look at The Book

Women of Worship

Raising Sticky Hands to Heaven

Linkup Grapic

Now…It’s link up time!


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Proverbs 1421

Compassion is Key (with LinkUp)

Proverbs 14:21…oh, how brutal God’s word can be sometimes.

Proverbs 1421

We live in a world that is FILLED with those in need. They live on the streets, in homeless shelters, go to church with you, or could even be your next door neighbor. Do we really recognize when we pass someone in need? Are we open to the signs that God shows us when He places those in need directly in our paths?

If He places those people in our lives, He put them there for a reason.

When we pass them by or just ignore their needs are we thinking that we are committing a crime? No! It’s not against any laws that are on the books, right!?!?!?

Oh, but it is. It‘s on the book. Except it‘s not in any government law. It‘s one of God‘s laws.

Now, will we got to jail for not helping those in need? Well, not really. We won’t go to a physical jail that is filled with robbers or murders. BUT, we will go to a spiritual jail for not following God’s laws.

So, what is the key to keep us out of jail?

compassion

That’s simple. Proverbs 14:21 gives us the answer. Compassion!!!

Compassion is something this world is seriously lacking. There are not enough people in this world that practice this very important character trait. According to Dictionary.com compassion is: a feeling of deep sympathy and sorrow for another who is stricken by misfortune, accompanied by a strong desire to alleviate the suffering.

It seems so easy to practice compassion, but the thing is…how many of us really do?

I know that you are thinking that you help everyone that comes your way, but how many times have you seen people standing on the side of the road with a sign and you just look the other way? How many times have you ignored the man sitting on the sidewalk in dirty, tattered, clothes?

We have all done these things and to say otherwise is a lie.

Compassion is a trait that we all need to work on. It actually takes a lifetime of work and we will slip and stumble. God knows this. We are only human. But, this is why He sent His son to die for us.

God’s forgiveness is no reason to skip having a compassionate heart, but as long as we are giving it our best, He will give us a life of spiritual freedom and blessings.

To get more insights from my co-hosts, please visit their blogs and see what they have to say about Proverbs 14:21.

Ren @ A Look at The Book

Mandy @ Women-of-Worship

Angie @ Raising Sticky Hands to Heaven

Linkup Grapic

Now for the LinkUp!!!


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How to Study Your Bible {Review}

9780736953573There are many bible study methods, but I have not seen one as in-depth as the inductive study method presented in How to Study Your Bible and workbook by Kay Arthur, David Arthur, and Pete De Lacy.

The basis of this method are three components: observation-discover what it says, interpretation-discover what it means, and application-discover how it works. The authors walk you through how to use these three components in your study. Each one has certain questions that will help you to understand and dig deeper into your scriptures.

The method, itself, looks a little confusing at first, since there are so many symbols and markings that they are teaching you to use on your scriptures, but once you learn them you can break down your daily verses and understand so much more. They teach you how to find who the author of the book is, who they are writing to, what God is trying to show us through His wonderful word and so much more. I have never studied the bible this way and have never had more understanding of what I was reading either.

I was a little worried about practicing this method on a bible that I have since I know that, in the beginning, I would make some mistakes with my markings. This is where the FANTASTIC workbook comes in. I got to try out this method without ruining a bible I have, plus, all the answers are at the back of the book. (I felt like I was back in high school and cheating a little.) If you buy the book (which I HIGHLY recommend) you need to buy the workbook. It will make things so much easier and save you from going through a few bibles in the process.

I can’t wait to fully embrace this method.

I would recommend this set of books to anyone that is really wanting to find some meaning in God’s word and to grow their relationship with their heavenly Father. It will take your study time to a whole new level.

{Disclaimer: I received a copy of these two books from Harvest House Publishers for the purpose of this review.  All thoughts and opinions are my own.}

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Storm Siren Review

Storm SirenStorm Siren is the first in a new trilogy by Mary Weber. I have not read a whole bunch of fiction books lately since I have not found anything that has captured my interest, but this book has my full attention and I am waiting impatiently for the next one.

I have never heard of Mary Weber, but the description of Storm Siren caught my attention. There are many books that can do that, but there are not many that can deliver the promise that the description gives. Storm Siren went above and beyond any of my expectations.

Nym is a 17 year old girl who is what the people of Faelen call an elemental. She can control the elements, but she technically shouldn’t exist since all elementals born are males. She has been sold so many times, from one master to another, and something happens each time that causes Nym to hate herself so much. The last master she has is wanting to use her powers to help end a war that the Faelen people are getting ready to lose. Nym has no choice but to help, otherwise it’s death.

Nym’s journey is a fantastic ride that pulls you into her world. Every emotion she feels; happiness, regret, shame, you will feel. The writing in this book is fantastic. So descriptive and engaging, I didn’t want to put the book down and didn’t. I actually read this book quite fast.

Yes, this book is a teen fiction, but I highly recommend it to any adult that likes getting lost in a FANTASTIC fantasy book.

Oh, did I mention the book has a trailer.

When does book two come out?????????   :)

{I received a complimentary copy of this book from BookLook Bloggers program for the purpose of this review.  All thoughts and opinions are my own.}

 

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The Family Project Review

The Family ProjectI usually love anything that comes from Focus on the Family, but the new book The Family Project by Flenn T. Stanton and Leon C. Wirth is one that I have to that I really didn’t like.

The authors take on the task of showing how a traditional family is still a viable option in today’s society regardless of the societal pressures that might exist. They pick apart the family dynamic and show how that it is God’s design.

I love the fact that they are using biblical principles to backup their argument, but that’s where the love stops. This book was a very hard read and, at times, so wordy that all the words blur together. I think the main theme that they are trying to portray to the reader is not meant to be stretched across 300+ pages.

I know that this is meant to be a companion book to the DVD series and maybe I would have liked it better in that setting, but I honestly have to say that I wasted my time reading this book. The true meaning of The Family Project is buried under a bunch of long winded writing.

{I received a complimentary copy of this book from Tyndale Publishers for the purpose of this review. All thoughts and opinions are my own.}

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