Tag Archives: bible verse

Give More Of Yourself

I think we can all agree that it’s pretty much the norm to live our lives only for ourselves. We do this within our relationships and ESPECIALLY outside of them. We want things for ourselves and pretty much operate solely for that purpose. My church has been doing a series called “Not Normal” and through this series it’s challenged us all to think about what is normal in society and challenge us all to be “Not Normal.”

Philippians 2:4

I was trying to think of ways I’m NOT normal and I think when it comes to selfishness and selflessness I’m more of the latter in many ways but there’s ALWAYS room for improvement. I find I’m mostly selfless when it comes to the people I care most about. I will sacrifice myself tenfold to let those people closest to me have what they want and make those people happy. Sometimes I think this is a little bit of a bad thing (when it’s in excess and I forget I have needs too), but it’s just who I am and largely part of the way I grew up. The thing is, I need to learn how to use that part of myself and branch out and do more for people I don’t necessarily know that well or even for complete strangers. I want to be that thoughtful type of person. I want to be NOT normal in that way.

I just thought about all this as I was busying myself finishing up a crochet project I’m making as a gift for someone special. The amount of time, effort, thought and love I have put into this project and the thought of giving it to the person I made it for just fills me with this intense JOY. Ever noticed that? When you give to others and see the difference you’ve made or the smile you put on someone’s face doesn’t it give you joy in return? There are a lot of people in the world who are feeling unfulfilled in their lives and are maybe even chasing after the wrong things trying to find fulfillment. Interesting that all we have to do is give a little of ourselves back in order to receive it! We all have something to give. It could be money, time, special skills/talents or maybe just a little bit of love or even a smile or an encouraging word. I think we’d all find that in giving OF ourselves instead of TO ourselves we will find more contentment in our own lives!

So I think that’s going to be one of my Challenges for 2014. I’m going to challenge myself to be “Not Normal” and try to find ways I can give more of myself to others this year!

I Already Have What I Need

I don’t know if it’s true for everyone, but when I look back on the last 9 years of my life and think about the change, it seems almost astronomical. Even just in the last year, the changes are so profound. I’m not just talking about physical, which is definitely the most noticeable, but there have been changes all around. I’ve been faced with difficult decisions, faced some big fears and experienced more than I even imagined possible. Most importantly and above all I learned to trust God more though all of that. When I look back I can see how even the smallest of choices and little changes started a process much like a domino effect.

God Will Provide

God’s timing is so perfect! For a long time I looked back and regretted certain choices I made. I envied the people around me who seemingly had their lives, hopes and dreams completely figured out. Only now am I able to look back and see that God was leading me through a process that was shaping me into the person I am supposed to be. He was slowly but surely planting new dreams in my heart and giving me everything I needed little by little.

This morning I was reading one of the daily devotions I get in my email and it was talking about how God gives us what we need and if at any point we need more, He will give it to us. When I read that and looked back on the last few years of my life, I felt like I could see just where God was pouring a little more into my life just when I needed it. At the time I didn’t even realize it, but looking back I can clearly see how each time He was placing an integral piece to the puzzle of my life.

When He planted the seed in me to change my lifestyle, that was what started it all and of course that seed was planted long before I even knew it. It started a process of learning to trust Him and to love the life He gave me and teaching me to have the discipline to take better care of it. It started a process of personal growth of learning more about myself and revealed hidden passions and hidden dreams that I never knew were there. Today, as I once again struggle with the looming possibility of having to make another hard decision, I try to remember that this is just another step of the process and another piece of the puzzle. No matter what decision I make, I know that I can trust that God will be using it to further shape my life.

Even now, as I proofread this post, I noticed something I did that was completely unintentional! Look how many times I used the word “process” which I have now gone back and edited in as links. Maybe it’s just because it’s still fresh in my mind and my subconscious is trying to drive the “point” home, but I find it interesting how in church on Sunday we heard about how the process is the POINT and now here I am talking about the process God has been guiding me through over the last few years. Just some food for thought! I think if you take some time and look back on your own lives you will also see how things have fallen into place or even OUT of place only to eventually let other things fall into place.

Trapped

I’ve been feeling good lately. Started a new workout regimen and it’s been kicking my BUTT. It’s good though. I’ve lost weight thanks to Weight Watchers but lately I’ve hit a bit of a plateau and I have troublesome areas that need a lot of work. So I started ChaLEAN Extreme and holy crow, it certainly IS extreme. I like it because the workouts pretty much vary on a daily basis so it keeps it different and interesting.

Regardless of feeling so good, lately I’ve been feeling sorta trapped. Like I’ve got this giant glass jar over me and it only allows me to go so far. I’m really starting to want to break out of this giant glass jar I’m caught in but part of me is also very comfortable in the constrains of this jar and the security it offers me.

These last couple years I’ve definitely made some serious advances toward breaking out of this jar. I’ve forced myself out of my comfort zone and even had great success as a result of it, but occasionally I feel like those glass walls are closing back in. I feel like things are never going to change for me. I feel like my fears in life are just going to haunt me until they inevitably come true. I find I get discouraged when I work hard to step out of my comfort zone hoping more things will happen for me and they don’t. I guess I’m learning to accept that there are some things about myself that I just won’t be able to change. I’m sure there’s a reason for it. God wouldn’t have made me the person I am without a reason behind it.

For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.

Jeremiah 29:11

So I’m just going to keep breaking through these glass walls as much as I can and hope that eventually I will be free of them for good and find my purpose in this world.

Speaking of my fears, I’m conquering one of them this coming Monday. I’m going to the Doctor and getting some moles removed. One more thing I can check off my list of things I need to get done and also things that I’m insecure about that I will finally be rid of. Hopefully they won’t be malignant or anything, so say a little prayer for me!