My Story (Saved by Grace) continued

My Story

In my last post I shared my story of abandonment, abuse and depression. This is part 2 of my story; where I will share God’s grace, and my redemption. To read part one follow the link below.     

My Story (Saved by Grace)

When I left off I spoke about a man whom my childhood friend introduced me to. As you probably already guessed this man is Jesus. But stick with me, because this story doesn’t end here. 

I meet my childhood friend in 7th grade. We grew up together and shared some of the same struggles. When we were 19, my friend told me that see was invited to this church by another friend. And that her life had began to change. She told me that she now felt a sense of purpose, and acceptance and love. The way she talked about Jesus, was like nothing I had ever experienced before.

He was her personal savior, a very real part of her life. I could see the change in her was more than just superficial. She truly had a renewed mind, and heart. Her love for God, and her obedience to the Word of God became an inspiration for me.

Far from happily ever after

That same year, I began to date the man who I have now been married to for 11 years. We married just 4 months later. I would love to say that we were perfect together. But I learned that nothing good comes easy, and some things are worth fighting for.

And fight we did, literally. We were two strong willed, broken people. Who loved each other one minute, and wanting to rip each others heads off the next.

When I shared my marital struggles with my childhood friend, she told me how God and prayer was changing things in her own marriage. She then invited my husband and I to church. Within a few months my husband and I were baptized, and days later I found out I was pregnant with our son Noah.

My Story

Still not there yet

We did not instantly fall in love with God, and live in obedience as my friend did.  We continued to drink, fight, and walk in disobedience to the Word of God. We were poor financially and poor in spirit. We drank and partied to numb our spiritual brokenness, and to deal with the pain we caused each other. At one point we were even homeless.

However there was a fire that kindled inside of me. A faith that was continuing to rise.I began to secretly pray for my marriage, and over all the struggles I was facing. I continued to go to church on and off, because I knew that there was something special there, that I could not get from the world.

Renewed By Grace

As I look back over those years I see the steps of renewal taking place in my life. We began to grow financially, and I began to grow spiritually. God gave us a stable home, and blessed us with two more beautiful children. Yet that was still just the beginning.

I randomly woke up one morning, and heard the voice of God calling me into ministry. I then began to feel him, hear him, and experience his love and blessings in my life more intimately.  The Lord taught me how to minister, by leading me to a wonderful Bible College, where I graduated with a 4.0. God also led me and my family to a church home, which has become a second family to us.

That first baby girl that I clung to, and refused to give up. She is a sophomore in High-school, and she embodies everything that’s good in me. The baby boy that I found out I was pregnant with right after I was baptized. He’s growing into a man after God’s own heart; with faith and prayers that can move mountains. My husbands faith is growing, and he is now moving in prayer ministry.

But best of all, the Lord has led me to programs, counselors, and books that have set in motion my process of healing. I am learning how to cope with my pain and depression. I also no longer have such a significant fear of rejection. In Christ I feel loved, and accepted, and cherished. His strength carries me when I feel that I am too weak to go on. Oh and how his grace renews me every day.

Cords of Kindness

The Lord has taken all of my struggles, heart break, and pain, and used it for good. So I created cordsofkindness.com to share the love, comfort, encouragement, and grace that I have received myself. That others would be led to God with cords of human kindness and ropes of love.

If you would like to learn more about the tools God has given me to heal from trauma. Subscribe to cordsofkindness.com at the top of your screen. And don’t forget to follow me on social media.

 

My Story (Saved by Grace)

My Story

It is my desire to share my story with the world. In hopes that it may encourage others to share their stories as well, and receive healing for their soul.

Some of the links in the post above are “affiliate links.” This means if you click on the link and purchase the item, I will receive an affiliate commission. Regardless, I only recommend products or services I use personally and believe will add value to my readers.

Abandoned 

I was born to a teen mom who gave birth to me at the age of 15. At birth I was given to my grandmother to be raised. Most of my younger years were spent without my dad and limited contact with my mom. For the rest of my childhood my parents were in and out of my life at different times.

Not having my parents in my life made me feel abandoned. Although I thank God for my grandmother, who did her best to fill that void. I often felt unwanted, unloved, and not good enough. These false core beliefs carried over into adulthood, because those relationships were never really reconciled.

Abused

As far back as I can remember (4 years old), up until the age of 11. I was sexually abused by three different people. All being either in my family, or very close to the family. This led to a deep depression that I could not even understand at such a young age. Which have plagued me most of my life.

I did not tell anyone about the abuse, or depression until I was 13; after I tried to commit suicide. At that time I was diagnosed with bipolar depression, and put on medication. Then they locked me away in a psychiatric hospital; as if I were the one with the problem.

I experienced a hurt so deep, that it would change the way I felt about myself and the world around me. I felt used, ashamed, angry. Nobody spoke up for me, nobody did anything to help me. I believed at the time, that nobody cared about what happened to me, or the pain that it caused in my entire being.

So I began to believe that the only way to receive love and attention was to please others. I learned to hide my pain, my thoughts and emotions. Because, who would care anyway? I learned a whole new set of coping mechanisms, and how to put on a smile that hides my inner self hate.

Broken

After this I became very rebellious and broken. I began to spiral out of control. Engaging in drinking, partying, and under-aged promiscuity. All leading up to my first abortion at the age of 14. My downward spiral continued into that next year, when I met a man 10 years my senior. He fed my desire for love and acceptance, gave me false security, and victimized me just like all the others. I became pregnant once again. However, this time I refused to let anyone convince me to get rid of my child. I gave birth to her at age 16 on July 20, 2002.

By this time I was a little wiser, yet still naive as ever. I worked and did the best I could as a young mother to care for my child; with my grandmothers help. But I continued to drink daily to ease my pain and sorrow. By the time I was 18, I had been pregnant a total of four times, with 3 ending in abortion.

Finally, I was tired of the life I was living. Feed up, I through my identity into achievement (another coping mechanism). No longer was I going to be the screw up. I got a butterfly tattoo (symbol of transformation), and I set my mind toward becoming a better person. But, I continued to struggle with depression, fear of everything (especially rejection), low self-esteem, low self-worth and no identity.

Redeemed

Then my life began to shift. My best friend since middle school, introduced me to a man who changed my life…….(To be continued).

This is just the beginning of my story. Subscribe and read part 2 by clicking the link below

My Story (Saved by Grace) continued

For more about me and Cords of Kindness see about.

Don’t forget to follow me on Facebook at http://fb.me/cordsofkindness

P.S. If you are struggling with the effects of sexual abuse, speak up and get help. Here is a link to a book that I combined with prayer ministry, and it changed my life. God Bless

 

 

If You Have Not Love

If I speak in the tongues of men and of angels, but have not love, I am a noisy gong or a clanging cymbal. And if I have prophetic powers, and understand all mysteries and all knowledge, and if I have all faith, so as to remove mountains, but have not love, I am nothing. If I give away all I have, and if I deliver up my body to be burned, but have not love, I gain nothing. 1 Corinthians 13:1-3

The passage above teaches the importance of love. It shows us where love is on God’s priority list, and where it should be on ours. Love can be a very powerful thing, if we allow it to take root in us. It has the power to change lives, and it changes how we treat one another. The Bible says that love is so powerful that it covers a multitude of sins. This means that most of the sins we commit can be removed, if we just love God, accept his love and manifest his love.

Anyone who does not love does not know God, because God is love.   1 John 4:8

 what is love?

Many today believe that love is a feeling. However I have found that love is an action, it’s a decision, it is a choice. Love does not survive by feeling alone. Feelings fade, feelings change, but love in action is not self seeking. It is abundant and unconditional.

When you are married, or have known someone for a number of years, there will be times when you don’t feel the love. You may even feel like you can’t stand them sometimes. Trust me I’ve been there. Does that mean you get a divorce, or severe that friendship?

I think not!!! Love is patient.

When feelings fade and tempers rise, this is the perfect opportunity for real love to prevail. The Apostle Paul gives a very sobering description on the true act of love in 1 Corinthians 13:4-8:

 Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud.  It does not dishonor others, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres. Love never fails.

To love others is to serve them as if you are serving God, not man. To show kindness to all people (even your enemies). Loving others is making the choice to see the good in them. While pouring out what is in you; the spirit, the love, the power of God.

Join me in love

It is my desire to share Gods love with the world. So I am challenging you to share the love of Christ with someone today. Take the time to serve, to care, to listen, to be someones blessing today. Don’t forget to subscribe, and share this challenge with your family and friends.

Follow me on social media and comment how you did with this challenge.

https://fb.me/cordsofkindness

www.pinterest.com/cords2kindness

Ten Tips To Tame Teens

Teens can be very difficult to raise at times. Unless you are one of the lucky ones, who created an angel. Although my own teen is pretty awesome, she is no angel and raising her has had its challenges. This is why I am here sharing what has worked for me and things I have learned along the way. Maybe one day I will have to review this list myself, because I have three more children who will one day be teens.

This is in no way intended to be an exhaustive list of how to raise teens. As we know every child is different, and teenagers constantly change as they age. However these are some great tips to implement into your relationship with your teen. And they will thank you for it later.

  1. Communication is key= I cannot express how deeply important it is for us to communicate with our kids. Communication builds and maintains relationships with our teens.  Listening to them, helps them learn how to share their thoughts and feeling, which nurtures their communication skills. It gives us the ability to be their encouragement and confidant. And through it we can teach them integrity, respect, responsibility, and anger management.
  2. Teens need rules, routines and structure just as much as younger children= Giving your teen chores teaches them responsibility. Requiring good grades teaches them the importance of hard work. Demanding respect, teaches them to respect others and authority figures. Bedtimes, homework times and curfews, shows them the importance of time management.
  3. They still need and desire love and affection= Your teen may pretend like they don’t care about anything, and don’t want or need affection. But the truth is they do, rather they know it or not. If you don’t show and tell your child how much you love and appreciate them. They will settle for the appearance of it in the world.
  4. Don’t shelter them= I know we want to shield our children from the world, but we can’t. The world can be a tough place to live in, and we want to make sure our teens are prepared for adulthood. The requirement of wisdom is not just knowledge, but experience and good judgement.
  5. Don’t treat them or talk to them like babies. Teenagers want to be treated like young adults. So it is important that we talk to them, and teach them in this manner. Otherwise we may missed the opportunity for our message to resonate with them.
  6. Lead by example= This needs no explanation.
  7. Get in their business= It is our responsibility to help them make wise decision, and keep them out of harms way. When my daughter wants to go somewhere. My questions are, where you going, why you going, who’s going to be there, how they getting there, and when you coming home.
  8. Have fun with your teen= Make them go on those ridiculous family outings. Make them join in on family game nights. Go do somethings they like to do. Make them laugh, dance, sing, act silly, whatever it takes to enjoy them at this precious age.
  9. Be the “cool parent”= Or maybe not so much. I like to use my daughters slang words (wrongly) when talking to her. I tell jokes even if they are corny sometimes, and I do the same when interacting with her friends. They may act like you’re so totally embarrassing and clueless. But trust me, it secretly amuses them and they enjoy it (;
  10. Pray for them= When all else fails God is faithful. Pray at all times, with all kinds of prayers and supplications for your children, no matter how old they are. Prayer works and God promises that, if we train up our children in the way they should go, when they are old they will not depart from it. (Proverbs 22:6)

What tips would you add to this list?

 

How To Win At Life

How To Win At Life

 

Are you tired, burned out, and overwhelmed with life? Does it seem as if things in life aren’t going right for you? Do you sometimes wish you could just run away from it all?

Well you are not alone. I have been there many times. As a mother of four, chores, responsibilities and struggles can pile up pretty quick. And burnout is imminent at any second. Lets face it, sometimes life has a way of handing you spoiled lemons.

Although I have had my fair share of weariness, I am still surviving. And guess what? You will survive too if you don’t give up. I know, I know; you thought I was going to give you a secret cure to completely get rid of all your problems. But the truth is, we were never promised that life would be easy. There is however, something we can do to ensure we win at life.

Run The Race With Endurance

In scripture, in Hebrews 12:1 Paul says:

“Let us run with endurance the race that is set before us.”

Life is like a race. It is a race against time, a race to meet goals and deadlines. A rat-race to get ahead financially. A race of over-achievement, and a race to catch up with the person our false ideals tell us we should be.

Parenting in and of itself is a race, both literally and figuratively. From chasing behind a toddler with a saggy diaper, to chasing down your teenager with a broom. You parents of teens know exactly what I mean (;  But seriously, I want us to learn how to endure all of the struggles in life.

Endurance=  Endurance means to tolerate, or withstand unpleasant and difficult situations without giving up.

“Winning has nothing to do with racing. Most days don’t have races anyway. Winning is about struggle and effort and optimism, and never, ever, ever giving up.”  (Amby Burfoot)

 How To Run With Endurance

It also says in Hebrews 12:1-2 that, as we are running with endurance the race set before us. We should also be looking to “Jesus; the founder and perfecter of our faith.” Okay, now we have a focal point, we are not just running life in circles. We have a direction in which we are running. Proverbs 4:25 says “Let your eyes look straight ahead; fix your gaze directly before you.” This means don’t be concerned with what the other runners are doing, or the obstacles ahead. Stay focused on Jesus who is at the finish line cheering you on.

Paul uses the same racing analogy in 1 Corinthians 9:25-26.

“Everyone who competes in the games goes into strict training. They do it to get a crown that will not last, but we do it to get a crown that will last forever. Therefore I do not run like someone running aimlessly; I do not fight like a boxer beating the air.

What? Wait a minute, there’s a prize? Yes if we run the race of life well and keep our focus on Jesus, we will receive a prize (: “The crown of life.”

Scripture shows that we are running with purpose. We are running with a goal, to do the will of God, and receive a kingdom inheritance. Scripture also tells us that, we do not run in our own strength, but we must lean on the strength of God. Life is much easier when we realized that we don’t have to do it alone. That we are empowered to endure struggles by the Creator Himself. If we just invite Him to join in the race He set before us.

A Few More Keys To Enduring The Race

  • Pray instead of worry.
  • Forgive instead of curse.
  • Start our day with wisdom from the Word of God.
  • Worship, worship and more worship
  • Practice self care.
  • Serve those in need.
  • Re-prioritize when needed.
  • Take the time to slow down and express our gratitude for life.
  • Meditate on God, and the peace He has placed within us.
  • We all need a little solitude.

Finally, “Let us not grow weary of doing good, for in due season we will reap, if we do not give up. (Galatians 6:9)

Like, Subscribe, Follow me

If you enjoyed this post share, then subscribe for the latest content @ https://cordsofkindness.com

Like on Facebook at http://fb.me/cordsofkindness

Follow me on Twitter at http://twitter.com/cords2kindness