Prayer


So this week has been really rough for me… mostly due to the fact that I haven’t been really trusting God with a situation that I’m facing. I can’t remember who said it but a good truth that I heard recently was that most of the time we don’t entrust God with the little things in our lives and don’t put that into practice, and then when a big thing arises we go to God but we don’t really go correctly because we haven’t been really going to God with the other things… This is somewhat the case for me… I will honestly admit that I haven’t given hadn’t given my WHOLE life to God… mostly due to lack of faith (which is silly because that brings up doubt in the sovereignty of God and His power and love and I might as well not believe in God at all if that is going to be my mentality) My problem… I don’t constantly meditate on the word or on God’s promises to me… and I don’t confess them daily… so while I may know them when they are spoken to me or when I come across them in scripture, I am hard pressed to know what to say/pray when in urgent need… and THAT is very dangerous… I have been getting by thus far through knowing who to go to when this happens who can speak truth into situations and pray with power… but its time out for dependence on people with that… I can pray for myself and know how to get into the presence of God… I need to be able to pray in times of crisis and personal need too… depending on the Only True God and not man…

I’m not sure why this situation is arising… and my pastors always say God doesn’t need to use bad things to get your attention… like God doesn’t need to break your ankle to tell you you need to rest… He can just do it… But it doesn’t really matter why anymore… because the lesson that I’m learning that’ll last me a lifetime… and the devil can be mad because I already had victory over this situation before I even knew it existed…

So I am questioning if this is my refining process… Its funny because in our leadership meeting @ the beginning of the semester we studied John 15 and I was the only one who spoke up saying I don’t know if I like this refining business… I mean like really it just doesn’t sound like fun to me… Mind you I wasn’t really looking at the other option (being cut off and pretty much dying) I was just focused on how pruning and cleansing had the potential to be very painful… So after wallowing in self-pity for half the week I have finally been awakened to the reality of the situation… and I can praise God for that… This was awakened through a note someone wrote on facebook which I believe he said is from My Utmost for His Highest… (which now after reading this I might want that book) 

“Bind the sacrifice with cords, even unto the horns of the altar.” The altar means fire—burning and purification and insulation for one purpose only, the destruction of every affinity that God has not started and of every attachment that is not an attachment in God. You do not destroy it, God does; you bind the sacrifice to the horns of the altar; and see that you do not give way to self-pity when the fire begins. After this way of fire, there is nothing that oppresses or depresses. When the crisis arises, you realize that things cannot touch you as they used to do. What is your way of fire?

I’ve been praying and asking God to consume my worship… and I believe that in order to do that… with that fire, he has to purify me… that means cutting me off from my past completely… something I sometimes try to hold on to… or sometimes beat myself up for… But God doesn’t remember our sins and I continually do not need to remember them either… this goes back to a message we heard in Atlanta… Remember in the Hebrew translation means to bring into the present… I know ya’ll may not understand… but its ok… if someone gets it that’s kool… they can understand why I cry these tears of joy right now… Just another praise for my testimony… of how Great… Awesome… Marvelous… Wonderful… Splendorous… Incredible… Mighty… I could go on… MY GOD is… Oh I’m excited… It may have not been immediate but I got there… I could scream…  I can’t even type no more I’m so excited… My God… Ya’ll just don’t know… Giving God my EVERYTHING… my WHOLE BEING… I am SO on FIRE

A poem I wrote in Atlanta called Remember Me

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I admit it… I’m a cry baby… I’ve always been one and I guess I’ll always be one LOL…

What triggered this revelation? LOL

Well my poor brother had a bad day @ school today and came back from his basketball game upset… When my mother picked us up from his school (cuz that’s where I work) he got into trouble for not having a coat on from this morning. I felt bad for hime for a lil bit cuz my mother doesn’t know when to stop yelling and leave well enough alone and he was already upset… It doesn’t help that he crosses the line and yells @ her for her to leave him alone… I wanted to come to his rescue but I wasn’t in the self sacrificing mood… (Thank you Jesus for not saying that that day on the cross)…

Anyway my mother (God bless her heart) doesn’t know how to handle situations well… And I actually blame her for my brother’s anger… She asks me what was wrong with him and I said I didn’t know because he had told me earlier he didn’t want to talk about it so I left him alone *hint hint… but no… she goes to pry when he’s already mad @ her for yelling @ him the way she did… and its not bad that she went to pry because it kinda shows in her on way that she does care… but it was the way she did it… and he doesn’t want to talk to her so what does she do? Yell more… I mean you’re not going to get him to talk about what’s wrong with him if you’re yelling @ him making him feel worse… He has an anger rage fit and she yells @ him more and it continually escalates while I pray that she just leaves him alone…

Anyway… she leaves and I talk to my brother while he packs because apparently he’s leaving (I’ve done that plenty of times @ his age and even did leave once)… As he sits there crying telling me what’s wrong I start crying… I’m like what is wrong with you Ashley come on you’re supposed to be helping him not crying… My heart was breaking for this kid… he’s growing up going through the trials of being a teen and of living with a verbally abusive mother… and I cry… but I think I get through to him somehow…

It made me think about how I’d be with my kids when they’re in crisis… whether I’d sit there and cry with them… or have a backbone and be strong for them… I know I WILL NOT BE VERBALLY ABUSIVE OR TALK DOWN TO THEM IN ANYWAY… I love my mother I think… I just know I REFUSE to be like her…

Off to play the wii wit my bro 🙂

*** Edit: My brother slept in my room again last night like he did before I left for Atlanta… only this time he slept in the bed with me… all I have to say is NEVER again LOL I got no sleep haha… He’s lucky I love him LOL ***

So I always am motivated to do things by one thing or another. I’m motivated to get up in the morning because I need to go to class. I’m motivated to go to class because that’s how I get good grades. I’m motivated to get good grades because I want to graduate. I’m motivated to graduate to get my degree and a chance at a decent job. I’m motivated to do that because… well because that’s what society tells us to do.

There was a point in time when my sole motivation for going to college was so I could get a good job to be able to have my 2 youngest siblings move in with me so I could take care of and support them because I thought my step-mother and father weren’t doing a very good job because neither of them had a job or degree and it just was pretty horrible. That was 4 years ago. There also was a point in time when I said I was going to drop out of school because I was so sick and tired of it and couldn’t stand it anymore because it was holding me back from “life”. That was 3 weeks ago! Let me just say that my siblings are actually in a much worse place than they were 4 years ago when they were my motivation for getting my degree and that it’s only the grace of God that’s been keeping them thus far but they are no longer a strong enough motivation for me to complete that goal.

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Jhamir 7, Savannah 8

When I do get the motivation to clean my room, it is because I’m tired of looking at the mess and not being able to find things. Unfortunately that motivation almost always passes very quickly and I don’t mind sitting in my mess for a few more months. Its not that I totally enjoy filth, because quite frankly I really don’t like it, but more that I’m not too motivated to do something about it.

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Very old picture of my room clean in college

I’ve always been motivated to lose weight and be a smaller size. More because the scale says that I’m obese than anything else but also because I think I’d look better if I were just a lil bit smaller. My family has always called me big girl and my mom has always compared my size to hers when she was my age (she was actually quite skinny before she got pregnant with me) and all signs pointed to I need to lose weight. But then I do certain self esteem exercises where you’re supposed to love yourself the way you are and I quickly lose those motivations (which weren’t very good ones to begin with).

Me in Oct '08

Me in Oct

My pastor (I think it was my pastor LOL //*edit* it was my pastor 🙂 first lady but pastor nonetheless//) said that our motivation for doing something ought to be lined up with the Word of God because if it isn’t it won’t sustain us to the point of striving to meet that goal or expectation. I know this all too well with my failed attempts @ change and how I too often give up on things that I know are good for me to do. But the Word should drive us to be steadfast and endure because you’re not doing it for anyone but God and striving to please Him and that’s unchanging. I think she also said it should be out of our Love and Obedience towards God if I’m not mistaken.

So I’m writing this because I definitely need some accountability and PRAYER in the areas I’m trying to work on… mostly to get started but to also keep striving for excellence in completing my goal because I have a tendency to start and stop things very quickly. Now some of these things I can start doing now… and others I can’t but because certain variables are needed… but I still need to be reminded constantly of them because otherwise when I will have the opportunity to do them, I won’t forget and not do them.

So this is my Personal Growth Chart for the moment. I filled this out on my own in case you’re wondering because its all typed and what not. I typed it up and then printed it out and then scanned it as a picture so I could share it with you all because I think its a valuable tool to have. I know there are plenty of other scriptures to support cleanliness and finances I just couldn’t find them so if you have some please do share and I’ll add them and meditate on them as well!!!

MY ECC Personal Growth Chart

ECC Personal Growth Chart

Now this is an expanded comprehensive chart of areas in my character that I want to be in excellence in. Now I have some other things I’d like to do just out of shear obedience too.

  • Say my daily confessions from ECC and from Dare 2 B U group
  • Write in my journal daily from ECC, Dare 2 B U group, and my own personal journal (That’s alot of journaling LOL)
  • Share my faith with at LEAST one person a week (with a heart to go with it not just to be keeping tabs on doing my “christianly duties”.
  • Sleep no more or less than 6-8 hours a night (I currently have a sleeping issue if you couldn’t tell with my writing a blog @ 5 am)
  • Eat 3 right portioned meals a day (I currently eat 1 meal a day… it’s really bad)
  • Tell my brother (Andrew, 12) I love him a least once a day (OMG I can’t believe I just wrote that LOL) and give him a hug (You can definitely tell I didn’t come up with this one… definitely the Holy Spirit there LOL… I’ma definitely need help with THIS!!!!)
  • Pray aloud for a least 30 min a day (this is getting deep… I can pray in my head all day long if I wanted to, but aloud… this is gonna be tough)
  • Stop sucking my thumb (it’s my crutch of comfort… I’ve been doing it for 20 years… old habits die hard…)
  • Stop lying to myself (This will be hard for be accountable to but its a big deal because if I lie to myself I’ll lie to anyone for one thing and I try very hard not to lie to other people but readily accept the lies I tell to myself and secondly the lies I tell to myself are very deadly and non life giving and I really really REALLY need to stop)
  • Stop doing the things that I know I can get away with because no one knows but me and God (its nothing major like stealing but sin is sin and again its deadly so something I need to give up)
  • Write out a daily plan for my day and stick to it until I get out of the routine of laziness (Its just deplorable how I slept 15 hours today and pretty much wasted the day away sleeping)
  • Smile for a minimum of 2 hours a day ( I think this is the most difficult task on my list yet LOL)
  • Call my grandmother once a week to say hello (Whoa… have you talked to my grandmother lately??? man… Lol)

I think that’s it for now… I would hope so because that’s alot of things I need to do… but my pastor said on Sunday why work to get only one area of your life in excellence when as soon as you’re there you won’t be able to enjoy it because you look back at all of the other area’s you’re lacking in and see that they aren’t to the caliber of the one area you’re in excellence in and so you’re dissatisfied. I believe God has given me the strength, knowledge, and wisdom to be able to reach these goals. Because He desires that I mirror Jesus and walk in Excellence just as Jesus did so that He may work in me as I work for Him. I’m not saying its going to be easy… because wow… its definitely not… but its possible.