A Little Getaway With God Is All It Takes

imagesCAKWHONL

If you have noticed the theme of most of my posts have been how God has answered prayers, often in unexpected ways. God truly desires to be involved in every aspect of our lives even down to the smallest detail. He doesn’t always answer them when we may want or even in the way we would expect. But He does answer. You simply cannot put God in a box. I believe after experiencing and recognizing His hand in some of the things you pray about you will not want to either.

As I mentioned in the blog before, my husband and I were about to celebrate three full years of marriage. Whenever we are able to, we usually make a trip back to San Antonio where I lived before we married. We would go visit friends and family while there, attend church services at our old church if we stayed over the weekend, and we would never leave without stopping at Tiago’s at The Rim. They have the most amazing chocolate cake with cinnamon ice cream and whipped cream! It has become a tradition of ours to do that when we have a chance to get away. Since that was what we usually do we began researching hotels on the Riverwalk Downtown where we had our first official date. As I researched locations nothing sat well in my heart. So we really began discussing doing something different for our anniversary this time. I started looking up Bed & Breakfast locations in San Antonio but everything was extremely priced or booked on the day we would be able to go. So I looked in Austin, Georgetown, and even up north. Then my husband said, “Babe, why don’t you try College Station?” I typed it in and turned to him and said, “We haven’t really prayed about it like we would normally do.” So we stopped for a moment and we prayed.
Just as I opened my eyes and turned back to the computer the paged loaded for Abigaile’s Treehouse. It is located in Bryan, Texas. The first thing I did was read the reviews and they were all so amazing. But honestly it only took the first one to get me because the couple praised and thanked God for leading them there. They had stayed in the Eagle’s Nest which is the room on the top floor. I looked through the pictures and fell in love. 
We began the process to book the room and decided to call to ask some questions. After speaking with the owner, Lisa Ketchum, I just knew this was where God wanted us to go to relax, get rejuvenated, and prepare for the upcoming year. She is such a beautiful, loving, and welcoming woman of God.

We planned to leave right after church service on Sunday. I woke up very sick so I stayed home from service and took some medicine in hopes it would go away before we planned to leave. I had the beginnings of typical flu symptoms. Unfortunately they didn’t go away, but we still decided to go and at least get some much needed rest. I am so glad we did!

Lisa was as great in person as she was over the phone. She walked us through and shared her personal testimony about how Abigaile’s Treehouse came to be. (I will leave that out so if you ever get a chance to stay there you can hear for yourself. It’s awesome!) I loved her passion for the place, for people, and for God’s plan for her life.

Even though we weren’t feeling our best we still enjoyed the hot tub that is in the room. There is a loft you climb up into to spend time reading and in prayer. The breakfast, fresh baked cookies, and bread Lisa left for us were amazing! There is Christian artwork and materials throughout the room. Without a doubt, the peace & love of God flows through that place. One day is not enough to stay! I really wish we could have stayed two days to really soak up everything. But even being there just the one night was so relaxing and such a wonderful experience.
One of the things I really loved was reading through the Guest Book in the room. People from all over the country and as far back as 2011 shared their experience and reason for visiting. Some were recently married, some just getting away to get refocused, and others married many, many years. Each one unique and each a beautiful testimony! Most believed that God sent them there just as we did.
My husband and I spent time together praising and worshipping God. We sought His direction and we thanked Him for our marriage (Psalm 16:11; 95:2). We honored God together because He is the foundation of our marriage. He is the one that brought us together and He is the one that will keep us together. Then my husband prayed an incredible God-lead prayer. He spoke blessings over me and declarations over our marriage and family. We connected on a greater level, strengthened our marriage, and increased our love for one another. God is so very good!

My hope and prayer is to do this a few times a year. I know it is very beneficial to my mind, heart, and spirit and I want to be my best me not just for myself but for God, my husband, and for those that are a part of my life.

I would highly recommend to make a point of taking time for yourself with God and getting away from the external noise of everyday life and get before God whether you are married or single. Pray and ask Him today for an opportunity and provision to get away to seek Him. Get His direction and guidance for your life. It doesn’t have to be extravagant, or costly. You don’t have to go to the Caribbean or travel afar. It could be in the next town over. You don’t have to go for a week. Just a day or two. Trust me, God wants that time with you. So He is more than willing to make it happen, if it is your desire to spend time rejuvenating your relationship with Him. All you have to do is ask and then step out and do your part. Don’t pass up the opportunity. Stop putting limits on God and putting Him in a box. Believe that He will do something special and wonderful for you. He loves you.
When you get to the place that God leads you to, limit your activities so you can truly spend time in His presence worshipping Him and meditating on His word and promises. Then receive His love, joy, and peace. A little getaway with God is very beneficial to your life! You will be so blessed and happy you made the time and stepped out to do it!
I am already envisioning every person who may read this and praying for each and everyone of you that you will have a special God-experience. That God meets you right where you are and blesses you in such a special unique way that is designed just for you! I am praying that you grow in your love for Him and for others. I am praying that you will truly know how much He loves you and wants to spend quality time with you. I pray that your mind and spirit will be rejuvenated and refocused. Please be sure to stop by and share your testimony. I would love to it! God bless everyone who reads this blog.  

What Are You Saying?

ipad-faith1_t607

Hey everyone! I pray you have all been doing well. I wanted to apologize for not blogging for a while now due to unforeseen circumstances. But I’m back and have something that God has been stirring up in my spirit and on my heart to share with you all the last few days. I pray you are blessed by it!

I am sure you have heard messages or seen books out there about making positive declarations over your life. Speaking from my own experience I have found that it is often easier to believe and speak positive things over other peoples lives than our own. As a result, there have been times in the past that I have settled for less than God’s best for my own life. That is until I got the revelation of how it works for me. I’m not saying I have arrived yet but applying this principle to my life has been very beneficial and life changing in many areas; physical, emotional, spiritual, mental, financial, and relational. I want to tell you can have victory in your life by changing what you say.

So today I want to share with you what I do each day and encourage you, in fact I want to challenge you to try it for yourself and see what happens. Now you might be thinking, “oh I have a good life already.” I’m here to tell you that it can be even better!

First we have to start with the fact that the Bible is God’s Word. As a believer we know that “All Scripture is inspired by God and is useful to teach us what is true and to make us realize what is wrong in our lives. It corrects us when we are wrong and teaches us to do what is right.” (2 Tim 3:16, NLT) If you are not a believer and not sure if you agree with that statement I would like you to try this and let God show it to be true to you. A great resource to use is www.biblegateway.com and try versions such as The New Living Translation, Amplified, Message, and the NIV (New International Version). You can actually do side by side comparisons and really get the most out of His Word. 

Second, in Isaiah 55:11 (see all of Isaiah chapter 55) God’s Word says that His words cannot return void, that it produces fruit, and it accomplishes what He sent it out to do. So whatever He says is going to happen, you can count on it! His words have amazing power to actively produce something in your life. If you read the account of Creation in the book of Genesis 1, you will see that God spoke everything into existence. He said “Let there be…” and it came to be. He envisioned it and then called it to be. Now think about this, in that same account it also says that we are created in His likeness, His image. Since God’s words have such great power doesn’t it make sense that they create the same power when we speak them? We are His children, made in His likeness, and His image so we also have authority and power in our words.

The Bible clearly says that there is power in the tongue. Proverbs 18:21 tells us that “the tongue can bring life or death.” In the Message version it says, “Words kill, words give life.” Another Proverb says that “the tongue brings healing.”

So what are you speaking out of your mouth? Are they words that give and promote life? Or do they bring curses and death? Are your words healing?

One of the worse things I used to always say years ago is, “my back is killing me!” Well guess what? That didn’t make the pain go away at all! In fact I would become so depressed and discouraged and the pain would get so bad I have felt like I was dying! I have really had to examine what I was saying and I had to change the words I speak. I declare that my back is in alignment and strong. I am still working on that but definitely seeing a greater improvement in this area. Thankfully I have people in my life that remind me of my declarations on days that might be challenging or difficult. So make you sure you have people in your life that will hold you accountable and remind you of your declarations.

My husband and I have taken God’s word and made it our own. We make declarations every single day together concerning God’s promises and have seen it work in our lives in many areas, such as our marriage, finances, and relationships. We are not only reminding God of His promises but we are personalizing His Word concerning our lives. So what does that look like?

I wanted to give you a simple example to get you started and then you can research God’s word for yourself. As you study and meditate on the scriptures you can ask God how you can personalize them. So let’s get started!

If you have your Bible turn to Psalm 1 or you can go to the site I mentioned earlier and enter Psalm 1 and choose a translation. I like using the Amplified when I do this because it elaborates on the words used but you pick a version that works best for you. Now take a look and read each verse slowly, thinking and meditating on what they say.

Now I would like you to stop for a moment and pray. Ask God to guide you and reveal His word to you and give you clarity. Ask Him how you can apply it to your own life, making it personal. Thank Him for His wisdom, guidance, and word. If you need to ask for forgiveness in any area so you have a clear mind then do so.

As you grow in your declarations God will begin to teach you how to even pray out His word when you speak with Him.

Now re-read Psalm 1 again. I am going to break it down verse by verse. The scripture first and then the example of the personalized version in bold letters.

Blessed (happy, fortunate, prosperous, and enviable) is the man who walks and lives not in the counsel of the ungodly [following their advice, their plans and purposes], nor stands [submissive and inactive] in the path where sinners walk, nor sits down [to relax and rest] where the scornful [and the mockers] gather.

I am blessed, happy, fortunate, prosperous, and enviable because I do not walk and live in the counsel of the ungodly, unwise, & unbelieving. I am blessed, happy, prosperous because I do not follow their plans, advice, or purposes and I do not participate in the things they do.

But his delight and desire are in the law of the Lord, and on His law (the precepts, the instructions, the teachings of God) he habitually meditates (ponders and studies) by day and by night.

I delight and desire God’s word, instructions, direction, guidance, and teaching. I study, meditate, speak it, pray it, and live it everyday, all day.

And he shall be like a tree firmly planted [and tended] by the streams of water, ready to bring forth its fruit in its season; its leaf also shall not fade or wither; and everything he does shall prosper [and come to maturity].

Because I do that I am like a tree that is firmly planted by streams of water, ready to bring forth its fruit in its season. I do not fade or wither and everything I do prospers.

Not so the wicked [those disobedient and living without God are not so]. But they are like the chaff [worthless, dead, without substance] which the wind drives away.

I am not disobedient and live without God. My life has meaning and purpose.

Therefore the wicked [those disobedient and living without God] shall not stand [justified] in the judgment, nor sinners in the congregation of the righteous [those who are upright and in right standing with God].

I do not have to fear judgment because I trust in God’s word and live it. Because I have received Jesus as my Lord and Savior I am in right standing with God.

For the Lord knows and is fully acquainted with the way of the righteous, but the way of the ungodly [those living outside God’s will] shall perish (end in ruin and come to nought).

The Lord knows and is fully acquainted with my ways, my choices, thoughts, actions and I live within His will and plan for my life.

When you get a chance I want to recommend you look up all scriptures regarding the power of your tongue in the scriptures. Meditate on them and begin to make simple changes. It won’t always happen immediately. But you will definitely see results!

Begin to see, recognize, and acknowledge the power you have to speak over your life. It is also very important to begin to see what you are speaking, believe it, receive it, and live it. I am not saying it’s going to be easy, it will take effort on your part. People can declare over you all the time but unless you receive it for yourself it is not beneficial to you. So do it for yourself. James 1 says that we cannot just be hearers of the word but we must be doers of the word! So you must also live it! You have to walk out the word! 

It is truly life changing. You can have greater confidence when you know who you are and you declare it over yourself. You will experience victories in areas of your life that you thought you could never have. You will experience God’s best for you and live a phenomenal life and that’s exciting!

So I want to encourage you today, especially if you are struggling, need improvement, or needing a breakthrough in any area of your life to begin to see what God’s word says about it. Be open and sensitive to what God wants you to learn regarding this. Be prayerful and give thanks. Find a principle or example and personalize it. Active the word! Make the word your own and make the word work for you! Speak with words of faith!

With that said this is my prayer for each of you taken from Eph.1 & Phil. 1
Every time I think of you, I give thanks to my God. I have not stopped thanking God for you. Whenever I pray, I make my requests for all of you with joy. I am certain that God, who began the good work within you, will continue his work until it is finally finished on the day when Christ Jesus returns. I pray for you constantly, asking God, the glorious Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, to give you spiritual wisdom and insight so that you might grow in your knowledge of God. I also pray that you will understand the incredible greatness of God’s power for us who believe him. This is the same mighty power that raised Christ from the dead and seated him in the place of honor at God’s right hand in the heavenly realms. I pray that your hearts will be flooded with light so that you can understand the confident hope he has given to those he called—his holy people who are his rich and glorious inheritance. I pray that your love will overflow more and more, and that you will keep on growing in knowledge and understanding. For I want you to understand what really matters, so that you may live pure and blameless lives until the day of Christ’s return. May you always be filled with the fruit of your salvation—the righteous character produced in your life by Jesus Christ—for this will bring much glory and praise to God. In the Mighty name of Jesus I pray, Amen.

P.S. Just to say how awesome God is, as I completed today’s blog my hubby started listening to a message he got last night from our Pastor’s spiritual father and it was on this very subject and he even used the same exact scriptures I used here. Definitely a word and confirmation from God! I believe it is His heart for His children to know this truth about His word, how to be & speak like Him. So in awe right now. God is good!