The Vanity in Victimization

The Vanity in Victimization

Very few people have learned my story of being physically and sexually abused in the past. In extreme transparency I open up about the dangers of falling into the trap of living in a state of victimization, and how powerfully Christ can redeem trauma by transformation.

Vanity manifests from victimization because your focus is only on YOU.

Your pain. Your burdens. Your unfairness.

Victimization breeds bitterness, resentment, a constant state of suffering, and completely prevents you from healing.

It becomes all consuming, exhausting, and isolating.

Instead of dealing with my trauma, I chose to repress it.

As a result this is what happened to me:

  • I longed for control in any area of my life because at one point it was robbed from me
  • I struggled to cope when things didn’t go as planned because I couldn’t function when control was taken from me
  • I built up walls that were once seen as “protection” that lead to defensiveness and victimization
  • I couldn’t sit still or have any “free time” in my life because it served as my outlet to compensate for actually processing my pain
  • There was little room for grace because any pain inflicted upon me convinced me to believe that person had to automatically be against me
  • When I was abandoned in my marriage, I had the prime opportunity to feed that deeply engraved victim role. Instead, God took hold of my heart and told me, “I’m going to use your pain as a trajectory”.

    See, I have refined you, though not as silver; I have tested you in the furnace of affliction. For my own sake, for my own sake, I do this. How can I let myself be defamed? I will not yield my glory to another.” Isaiah 48:10-11

    I realized there was something rooted within me that allowed me to always feel like the victim, and as if the world was falling apart every time control was ripped from me.

    I prayed for The Lord to reveal everything to me. In turn, through my dreams, He replayed my traumatic events before me that I fought for so long to run from. I finally had understanding.

    Ask and it will be given to you; seek and you will find; knock and the door will be opened to you.” Matthew 7:7

    I decided I was going to be done with being the victim, and choose to take the stand as a victor. I could stand confident as a victor because Christ already declared it into existence before me.

    I was a survivor. I was rescued. I was healed. All because I allowed Jesus to reveal the hidden root, and with open palms welcomed redemption to begin.

    Are you going to be the person who points the finger? Or are you going to fight to be the person who draws the circle? The circle that says, let me step back and examine ME.

    Develop an acceptance and awareness that each and every one of us is fallen and broken because of sin. We are not perfect, and that’s completely okay.

    What’s not okay is to blame someone else or the circumstances you’ve faced in your life for the state you choose to live in.

    Yes, I said choose. Because it’s our choice.

    People and situations are not responsible for how you respond.

    Tragedy can become a trajectory because of the power behind Christ’s mighty love for you.

    We can either be free and believe the truth that Christ will heal me, or succumb to the lie and blame the people or places around me.

    Our circumstances don’t define us when Christ defied our circumstances by His sacrifice on the cross.

    Stop living in the blame, and instead ask God to reveal how He can utilize you through your pain to bring glory back to HIS name!

    Yes, the trauma or pain you have endured be so dang difficult to fight through. Friends, remember there’s absolutely nothing you can’t do with Christ walking alongside you.

    Your pain will NEVER go to waste. Your pain has purpose.

    I consider that our present sufferings are not worth comparing with the glory that will be revealed in us.” Romans 8:18

    Once you shift the “why me?” to the “how can you use me?”, you will see freedom and healing and transform that victim into victory.

    Surrender before our mighty defender, and expectantly watch your beautiful transformation unfold right in front of you.

    Believing in the Breakthrough

    Believing in the Breakthrough

    You know that feeling. Thick heavy clouds weighing oh so heavily down on your heart. Anxiously anticipating the weight of the downpour to break you at any moment. Feeling like the flood of tears could sweep away the faintest ounce of strength you had left.

    The weariness.

    The darkness.

    The hopelessness.

    The questioning.

    Are you sure, God actually keeps His promises?


    12/11/2018 I was walking my dogs and weather outside was on the brink of a storm. It was early afternoon, but you could’ve been convinced to believe it was near dusk by the bleak darkness that filled the entire sky.

    Then, I just had this peaceful moment with God. I realized despite the heavy thick gray clouds, I’m still able to see all that’s around me. It couldn’t ever be complete darkness during the day, no matter the clouds, because the sun is more powerful. The sun is so incredibly far above that the storm can never overtake it.

    Although it may not be as bright out, we’re reminded the storm will pass and the sun will shine again.

    When the clouds begin to part and the sun starts to breakthrough, it slowly begins as single rays.The rays stretch far out across the sky to remind you hope is rising.

    When the sun finally, completely, breaks through, it becomes so blinding and powerful that you forget the clouds even exist around you.

    Isn’t it beautiful that this is exactly what Jesus does for us??

    In our storms, JESUS IS THERE!

    He is HIGHER than the storm because He is GREATER than our storms.

    I will continue to praise His name and give thanks even when my breakthrough hasn’t happened yet. I believe in this because I know in full truth He will not forsake his promises.

    Right now I know your weariness and exhaustion may be holding you down. I challenge you to fight and persevere because your prayers never fall on deaf ears!

    “Then you will call on me and come and pray to me, and I will listen to you. You will seek me and find me when you seek me with all your heart.” Jeremiah 29:12-13

    Your sun will shine again. Friends, your storms don’t have you. Your mighty God does, and He’s GOING TO BREAKTRHOUGH for you.

    Choose to believe in the breakthrough.

    “Then they cried out to the Lord in their trouble, and he brought them out of their distress. He stilled the storm to a whisper; the waves of the sea were hushed. They were glad when it grew calm, and he guided them to their desired haven. Let them give thanks to the Lord for his unfailing love and his wonderful deeds for mankind.” Psalm 107:28-31

     

     

    Materialism Manipulated Me

    Materialism Manipulated Me

    Investing confidence in financial or materialistic things robs you from the freedom Christ died to bring.

    Don’t get me wrong, having or desiring really nice things are not always a bad thing. While I say that, it’s imperative you sustain an awareness of it not taking root and becoming a heart issue.

     “No one can serve two masters. Either you will hate the one and love the other, or you will be devoted to the one and despise the other. You cannot serve both God and money.” Matthew 6:24

    Keep in check where your driving factors come from:

    Does it drive you closer to Jesus, or dig the hole deeper into sin?

    Does it drive you to work hard to convince people you’re happy, when reality is you’re nothing but empty?

    Does it drive you to be selfish in places you should be selfless?

    Does it drive dependence in the world or on the One who created the world?

    It’s important to keep tabs on the places you find your deepest drive in selfishness. It’s in those places that God is trying to show you that there is something in you that needs to be humbled and renewed.

    “For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.” Matthew 6:21

    The scary thing about glorifying our lives with worldly things is you end up preaching the wrong gospel.

    You proudly preach, “look at me – then you’ll be happy”. By this people start to believe success, money, travel, and materialism really will satisfy.

    Reality is, it’s nothing but a massive lie because we know the truth is this world can never satisfy.

    “Whoever loves money never has enough; whoever loves wealth is never satisfied with their income. This too is meaningless.” Ecclesiastes 5:10

    Don’t let materialism manipulate you

    Instead, we should be more proud to say, “look at what Jesus has done for me, within me, and what He can also do for you – so you can find freedom too”.

    I had my own fair share of battles with financial status and security. It became an ugly idol. This idol conformed my identity to the likeliness of the world, and made me my own enemy.

    • I was driven to have my dream car (Explorer) because it looked like a Range Rover.

    • I was driven to go back to school to become a Nurse Practitioner for better hours and higher salary.

    • I was driven to believe going on fun trips would give me the opportunity to escape problems or things I was avoiding.

    • I was driven not to tithe because I was so worried about building a significant financial security blanket, yet I made sure to have money for things I deemed “worthy” – superficially.

    What a stab, worthy. Isn’t is sad how easily we find ourselves just so entitled and worthy. Truth is, we deserve absolutely nothing, but our Savior gave us everything.

    How is it that I could be so consumed in doing what was “best for me” while I completely neglected praising my savior for how HE blessed me.

    He blessed me so I could bless others, not to live for self.

    “Bring the whole tithe into the storehouse, that there may be food in my house. Test me in this,” says the LORD Almighty, “and see if I will not throw open the floodgates of heaven and pour out so much blessing that there will not be room enough to store it. Malachi 3:10

    While sometimes having and doing nice things can be fun or de-stressing, I allowed myself to get carried away to fill the void of needing Jesus.

    *Enter conviction*

    I started tithing. I sold my dream car. I withdrew from NP school. I moved to the suburbs, and gave up city life.

    When my paycheck comes, my first 10% is now immediately tithed before any other financial obligation – no matter how scary it may seem. I can affirm without a doubt God will provide and bless me. Scripture says so.

    He knew I didn’t need the fancy car. He knew I wasn’t meant to be a NP, but instead, He wanted me to pursue ministry. He knew I didn’t need a high-rise because He wanted me to have an extra room to better serve HIS people who may have a need.

    I gave up several material things that were significantly driving me, and today I feel freer then free.

    My prayer is that you too will search your heart, and ask Him to reveal if there’s anything that could use a little “less of me”.

    Trust me, God has no problem giving us a dose of humility. God convicts us each differently, but longs to do it lovingly – to give you freedom.

    Let’s spend less time making our lives look pretty, and instead make our hearts and how we steward others pretty.

    Be financially free and trust God will make you rich by the grace of His promises.

    “Keep your lives free from the love of money and be content with what you have, because God has said, ‘Never will I leave you; never will I forsake you.’” Hebrews 13:5

    Show Me Your Scars

    Show Me Your Scars

    We all have scars.

    Some, more prominent than others, yet none serve as a lack of significance.

    Our scars tell a story.

    Where we’ve been. The trauma we’ve lived. The fire we’ve walked through. The pain once rooted deep within.

    We’re quick to cover up our scars out of shame, or the potential of dimming the beauty that’s found within. Scars usually aren’t pretty. We don’t want people to see them because we don’t only want to be seen by them. Our initial response is more than likely not to be proud of them. Depending where you’ve been, you may feel they’re best to never be talked about again.

    We don’t have to be proud of where we’ve been. More times than not we’d probably wish those circumstances or decisions would’ve never existed.

    While you don’t have to be proud of the events, things, or places that created those scars, I do challenge you to be proud of what they’ve made you, and who you are because of them.

    Some scars may be superficial while others are deep gashes that took what seems to have been forever to mend.

    I want to share a significant portion of John 20 about Jesus and His scars. When Jesus was resurrected He came back to see his disciples, and they knew for certain it was Him because of His scars.

    “…He showed them his hands and side. The disciples were overjoyed when they saw the Lord…Now Thomas, one of the Twelve, was not with the disciples when Jesus came. So the other disciples told him, ‘We have seen the Lord!’ But he said to them, ‘unless I see the nail marks in his hands and put my finger where the nails were, and put my hand into his side, I will not believe.’ A week later his disciples were in the house again, and Thomas was with them. Though the doors were locked, Jesus came and stood among them and said, ‘Peace be with you!’ Then he said to Thomas, ‘Put your finger here; see my hands. Reach out your hand and put it into my side. Stop doubting and believe.’ Thomas said to him, ‘My Lord and my God!'” John 20:20, 24-28

    When I came across this story, I personally was inspired to write about it from a different perspective of the scars we bear in our own lives.

    Jesus wasn’t ashamed by His scars. He knew His people would know it was HIM by witnessing the scars He showed them!

    My friends, why don’t we do the same!

    Why don’t we instead take a bold stance and tell the world that our scars are just fruitful testaments that God faithfully fulfills His promises!

    Jesus’ scars from the cross didn’t just define Him by where He’s been. It wasn’t left at crucifixion – It was boldly glorified by His RESURRECTION! The story of the gospel lives and breathes because it didn’t stop at the cross. He was meant to do what God ultimately destined Him to – to RISE, LIVE, and BREATHE so He could powerfully live on in each and every one of you.

    Your scars don’t define you by where you’ve been. No, instead, they give you the opportunity to share the gospel by faithfully proclaiming of what Jesus has done WITHIN!

    Your scars may have really hurt, and still may. But friends, it cannot even begin to compete with the testament of what Jesus Christ has done in you, and the legacy you now leave behind you.

    So, show me your scars.

    Share your story.

    Proudly be bold to bring God all the glory.

     

    “You restored me to health and let me live. Surely it was for my benefit that I suffered such anguish. In your love you kept me from the pit of destruction; you have put all my sins behind your back.” Isaiah 38:16-17

    Simply Be Still

    Simply Be Still

    “Be still”. What does it mean to “be still”?

    For some, the word “still” may not even exist in their vocabulary. I can humbly admit I’ve faithfully lived in this place at times. Life itself finds a way to  barricade our spare moments and engulf them instead with opportunities to do more, see more, be more.

    More. More. More.

    If it’s not good enough, it’s not done yet. If it’s not successful enough, it needs more work. If it’s not fulfilling enough, it needs another outlet.

    Are you tired of not enough? I am. It’s exhausting. It’s a never ending cycle with an aimless destination. Completely empty.

    I spend a lot of time reading biblical commentary to give me greater depth and understanding to the passages I read. This quote below is from “Enduring Word Biblical Commentary” on what the bible says about being “still” and how to apply it.

    "...as you know the glory and greatness of God, stop your mouth from arguing him or opposing him. Simply surrender." - Enduring Word

    I became fixated as to why the commentary chose the adjective “simply” to describe our process of surrender. If we’re really honest with ourselves, we have this pretense that surrender appears to be far from “simplicity”. Some may even equate the thought of surrender to a near tragedy.

    But ask yourself, does it have to be?

    Truth is, there is absolutely no simplicity found in control. Once you deal with one thing, you’re already 5 steps into the next thing. There’s never any time to stop and breathe because you’re so consumed in believing “I know what’s best for me, but thanks God”.

    We grasp for and grip control in any shape or form because we cling to the belief “I’ve got me”, instead of in faith declaring “God’s got me”.

    We do so because of the battle with living in fear. All too well we know if we surrender we blindly step into the unknown. That’s what scares us, the unknown. We long for control because we long to know the destination and outcome. In our way, our time.

    But what we fail to understand is that it’s amidst the unknown, The God of all creation, faithfully sustains us to be complete and whole.

    Surrender actually frees those exhausted, tight, clenched hands, and serves as the key to releasing the blessings God has already intended and planned.

    When our palms are too busy gripping our own selfish desires, we end up completely closed off to accepting  all God transpires.

    So let me ask, what are you desperately grasping on to that could instead use a solid “God I trust you”?


    The stillness is meant to refresh us. One of my mentors, Tammy, always says to me “He never once tells us to figure it out, but to trust and be still”.

    She’s right.

    In being still we are met with peace. The peace is found in knowing that with The Lord leading me nothing will be lacking or taken from me. The simplicity lies in believing God is for me; therefore, allowing myself to rest because nothing can or will stand against me. (Romans 8:31). Being still is confidently trusting whatever direction the unknown goes is ultimately to bring Him glory, and teaches me how to grow. 

    “The Lord is my shepherd. I lack nothing. He makes me lie down in green pastures, he leads me beside quiet waters, he refreshes my soul, He guides me along the right paths for His sake.” Psalm 22:1-3

    So my friends release,

    simply “Be still“, andknow that [He] is God”. Psalm 46:10

     

    Raw + Real

    Raw + Real

    Being a Christian isn’t about pretty, put-together, prayers.

    It’s raw. It’s real.

    Sometimes, if not most times, filled with the honest gut-wrenching tears.

    We live in this false pretense that it gets easier when you decide to become a believer.

    It’s easy to pull scripture + pour out truth when you’re not the one desperately grasping for an ounce of a breakthrough.

    It’s easy to say, “trust God” when you’re not the one hanging by the thread of only having “just God”.

    It’s easy to say, “I’m doing okay” to fight off the pride in humbly saying, “I honestly don’t know how to make it through another day”.

    But amidst the brutal, honest, tears, you end up being met by the God who knows exactly how to calm your fears.

    “Cast your cares on The Lord and he will sustain you; he will not let the righteous fall” Psalm 55:22

      The God who hears you.
      The God who sees you.
      The God who believes in you.

    Maybe right now you’re not okay.

    Maybe right now you need to hear it’s okay if you’re really not okay.

    But I will FIGHT to tell you, God with his goodness, mercy, and faithful heart never intends for you to stay that way.

    There will be a day your tears of mourning radically become transformed into tears of rejoicing and those that are adorning.

    Some days + nights you may find yourself clenching your Bible, and earnestly seeking a place to rest your head.

    My beautiful friend, it’s completely okay because it’s in the midst of the raw, real, dependence, you become a witness to experiencing His fulfillment of promises.

    “I have heard your prayers and seen your tears. I WILL heal you.” 2 Kings 20:5

    ————————————————————

    Many days + nights this was me.

    In full transparency, it still can be me.

    Your growth in The Lord shouldn’t make you more confident in self, but drive deeper the roots in dependence on God himself.

    I’m okay with this every once in a while being me, but Lord how I PRAISE YOU and THANK YOU for knowing you’ve set this captive 100% free.

    My prayer for you too, my friend, is to rejoice in the gift of freedom – freely gifted upon you, to heal you.

    Rock Bottom. The Brunt of Brokenness.

    Rock Bottom. The Brunt of Brokenness.

    When you hear the phrase “hit rock bottom” it’s fair to assume the context is one of negative connotation.

    Darkness. The lowest point. Excruciatingly painful. The end.

    In dealing with family, friends, or relationships where a loved one has strayed into a prodigal, it’s incredibly common you hear,

    “they’ll have to hit rock bottom at some point”

    But why?

    It’s a hopeful cry of desperation that they’ll come back around. Come back around as the old self they once were, or a completely new self – exceedingly better than before.

    Maybe at one point you were, or currently are, that prodigal.

    Is it not in our moments of desperation, where we literally have no deeper to fall, that we finally look up and cry out to Jesus that we need him, “now more than ever”? When you’re in a moment, or season, of hitting rock bottom it’s so easy to feel defeated.

    There’s no hope.
    No reason to carry on.
    You’ve finally messed up too much this time.
    There’s no way you can possibly redeem yourself.
    You’re unforgivable.
    You’re not worthy.
    You’re completely alone.

    What I find so fascinating about the term “rock bottom” is specifically the word, rock .

    Think about it – who is our ultimate rock? Jesus.

    It’s not surprising then when we hear testimonies of people who finally came to the end of themselves at rock bottom. In turn, they became completely transformed by Jesus.

    You have to believe, understand, and receive this truth: there is nothing you could do to destroy God’s plan for you. Jesus wants nothing more than to open his arms up to you, and welcome you home with merciful unending love and grace.

    “…but while he was still a long way off, his father saw him and was filled with compassion for him; he ran to his son, threw his arms around him, and kissed him. The son said to him, ‘ father, I have sinned against heaven and against you, I am no longer worthy to be your son’. But the father said to his servants, ‘quick! Bring the best robe and put it on him. Put a ring on his finger and sandals on his feet…for this son of mine was dead and is alive again, he was lost and is found.”  – Luke 14: 20-24

    Jesus eagerly anticipates the day you choose to look up in hope + truth instead of remain face down in the lie that your life is nothing but destitute.

    Rock bottom is finally putting an end to wrestling God, and creating a beginning of surrendering to God. What appears to be the end, in return, is an opportunity of a brand new beginning.

    ———————————————————————–

    Are you at rock bottom, friend?

    I’ll say this.

    I find freedom in rock bottom. While you may be in the brunt of your brokenness, you can fully trust that Jesus is going to fight to help you overcome + conquer this.

    Your brokenness, it doesn’t define you; it’s an opportunity to powerfully refine you.

    To heal you. To free you. To redeem you.

    “…I have heard your prayer and seen your tears; I will heal you.” – 2 Kings 20:5

    The lies the enemy has tried so hard to use to entangle you, have already been freely broken + defeated by the mighty Savior who died for you.

    I don’t know about you, but there’s no other solid ground I’d rather completely fall to my knees to – that of Jesus.

    My rock, my fortress, my defense.
    “The Lord is my rock and my fortress and my deliverer, my God, my rock, in whom I take refuge, my shield, and the horn of my salvation, my stronghold.” – Psalm 18:2

    It’s on that rock, whether on your knees or on your face…

    You will rise. You will stand. It’s only the beginning, not even near the end.

    You have a story God will use 100% for HIS glory. Choose to humbly submit. I promise you’ll be blessed by your testament.

    “…and on this rock I will build my church, and the gates of hell shall not prevail against it.” – Matthew 16:18

    Radical Love.

    Radical Love.

    Today is Valentine’s Day.

    For me, it’s quite a big day.


    It marks a year from being abandoned in my marriage.

    Initially I wrestled with, “God, why, of all days Valentine’s Day”?
    As I sat in silence, reflecting on this question, everything finally came to clarity.

    It was Valentine’s Day because that day symbolizes love.
    What I never realized is that this day was ordained for a mighty purpose…not just any purpose…a ministry purpose.

    This day boldly symbolized no greater depiction that man's love may fail, but God's love ALWAYS prevails

    I was questioned by an immense number of people in utter surprise

    • Why did you fight for your marriage?
    • How could you continue to stand for unconditional love when it was so much easier for you to run?

    My answer?
    Because I was SO overwhelmed by my Heavenly Father’s sacrificial unending love for me

    I knew my mission was to radically mirror HIS vision.

    When I chose to surrender ALL, stand + love radically, I powerfully granted Jesus full access to freely flow out of me.

    The best part is he can do the exact SAME thing for YOU!
    All you have to do is say, “Jesus, make me more like you”!

    So stand with me, and choose radical unending love!
    You’ll be amazed at the freedom and overwhelming blessing you’ll receive from above.

    “And so we know and rely on the love God has for us.

    God is love. Whoever lives in love lives in God, and God in them. “

    1 John 4:16

    +++ See video attachment below +++

    Pain is Debilitating. Forgiveness is Freedom.

    Pain is Debilitating. Forgiveness is Freedom.

    You hit your breaking point. You hit that wall.

    The point to where you just feel you have exhausted all efforts to give anything and everything you have. The wall that has been cemented around your heart in attempt to protect what’s left.

    Sometimes we set aside pain until it becomes utterly debilitating because we want to be “strong”.

    It took falling on my knees, weeping, to realize I’ve allowed myself to drown into depths of pain I didn’t even know existed.

    The ball and chain had won. I was being controlled by my hurts and hangups. 

    But I didn’t have to be.

    Forgiveness is HARD. It’s one of the toughest choices and acts of grace one can perform.

    Holding on to hurt binds you chain by chain, creating distance, until the sight and even thought of forgiveness is of the impossible.

    I’ve learned that the hard way.

    While I longed for peace, I held on to resentment. While I longed for hope, I held on even tighter to my past and current pains. It was a never ending cycle.

    I just completed a Bible study called “Forgiving Those Who Wound Us” in the “Bible” App. Through this study God spoke the healing I have been longing for.

    (If you are currently going through the same struggle, please challenge yourself to it!)

    We often quickly fixate on our own pain, the unfairness of it, and even the shock itself. What’s devastating is how quickly we forget how SMALL our trials are compared to what Christ suffered due to our OWN sin!

    Jesus faced persecution to SAVE us because we are WORTHY in HIS eyes! If we rely on God’s grace to forgive us in our brokenness, we are expected to do the same.

    “Then Peter came to him and asked, ‘Lord, how often should I forgive someone who sins against me? Seven times?’, ‘No, not seven times,’ Jesus replied, ‘but seventy times seven!'”-Matthew 18:21-22.

    We are imperfect people. We can thank sin for that.

    “Make allowance for each other’s faults, and forgive anyone who offends you. Remember, the Lord forgave you, so you must forgive others. Above all, clothe yourselves with love, which binds us all together in perfect harmony. And let the peace that comes from Christ rule in your hearts. For as members of one body you are called to live in peace.” – Colossians 3:13-15

    Humbling yourself in accepting you can be weak gives Jesus the power he longs for to provide you strength. 

    Forgiveness is a daily conscious choice. Good news!

    You may never get your answer, that apology, or the change you hope to see someday; don’t lose heart because Jesus is the ultimate healer. 

    Only Jesus himself can fill the void, and place your heart back together piece by peace.

    “He heals the brokenhearted and binds up their wounds.” – Psalm 147:3

    Break your chains one by one.

    Let your heart be put back together.

    Come find rest.

    Forgive and become free!

    Jesus guarantees it’s worth it.

    “Love never gives up, never loses faith, is always hopeful, and endures through EVERY circumstance.” 1 Corinthians 13:7.

    The Pursuit of Servitude in the Season of Singleness

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    Many of you may have become quite acquainted with the monotonous questions of “why aren’t you dating anyone?” or “why are you still single?” I know I sure have.

    If anyone knows me they know how much I love, love. I thought to myself…but where does love go when you are single?

    Ask me a little over a year ago where my life would be right now, and I would’ve told you: in nursing school, engaged, and planning a wedding. Sounds a bit different from my statement above, doesn’t it?

    What if I told you right now I am in nursing school, and happily single. Yes, you read that correct, happily. Can you be happily single? Coming from someone who had known nothing but long-term relationships, I could’ve told you in a heartbeat – no way.

    What I’m here to tell you is there is an answer called YES. This is an answer you don’t want to miss out on.

     Here’s my story.

    I’ve grown up in a household where I have never witnessed being lead by faith; I was the only practicing believer. When people ask about my testimony they would question me as to how that is even “possible”. For the longest time, I too, didn’t really understand. Growing up I went “church hopping” with friends, but never had a place to call my own community and refuge. My faith was mine, to keep to myself, and it was left at that. I became used to being my own spiritual leader, and later carried it into relationships.

     The fixer. The encourager. The spiritual-stronghold.

    I believed I could do and conquer anything I put my mind to; I had no other choice but to gain that sense of perseverance from responsibilities early on.

    My greatest passions derived from serving. Making people happy is one of my absolute favorite things to do in life. How could you not enjoy seeing a smile light up the room because you did something to make their day even a tad bit brighter? It got to a point, though, relationship-wise, where I neglected my own happiness in order to fulfill another’s.

    My crossroad came between getting engaged and pursuing The Lord. I couldn’t be the spiritual stronghold anymore because I couldn’t make an unbeliever believe nor did I have the right to try and do so. “Be ye not unequally yoked” 2 Corinthians 6:14

    Was this the hardest decision I ever had to make in my life? YES. In no way was this easy for me. In all reality, what end is? So after years of various long-term relationships, my destination was now singleness. Great, I thought, relationships were all I had ever known…how am I supposed to learn how to be single?

    The greatest answer was to hand my life completely over to Christ. Like I said, I had always grown up a believer, but for the first time in my life I actually handed over the control, and prayed for The Lord to lead me in this time of singleness.

    IF HE CHOSE ME, HE CHOSE YOU TOO.

    “You did not choose me. But I have chose you.” John 15:16

    Moving back to Dallas, I finally became 100% invested into a place that served as my sanctuary – Irving Bible Church. Little did I know this church would be the seed allowing me to grow and blossom into the person The Lord has been calling me to be.

    On October 5th, 2014 one of my pastor’s had preached a sermon about “Singleness”. This sermon blew me away and completely changed my perception on what it meant to be single. I can only hope this can serve as encouragement for those who may also struggle with singleness or need an extra spark to ignite your spirit…

    Usage of the terms “single” or “in a relationship” serves primarily as a STATUS.

    In my equation it would appear as so:

     RHIANNA = SINGLE

    Point blank.

    Because we are human, we tend to allow “status” to define the type of life we lead as well as our happiness. This ranges from relationships, finance, and success.

    Here’s the spin.

    What if we took “Service” and placed it into the numerator:

    SERVICE


    STATUS

    Now you may ask, okay so what does SERVICE/STAUS = ?

    According to this sermon and Biblical context, this is the outcome you don’t want to miss out on…

    First of all, singles should never classify themselves as “alone” because you are COMPLETE in Christ. We all “are the body of Christ, and each one of [us] is a part of it” 1 Corinthians 12:7. Although you may feel alone physically, Jesus is always in your spirit and guards your heart.

    My favorite statement from this sermon is, “The ultimate vocation of Christian singles is to be the Delta force for the Kingdom of God”. Delta force. How empowering is that? By embracing a season of singleness it reveals SUFFICIENCY of God’s love within ourselves.

    “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ’s power may rest on me.” 2 Corinthians 12:9

    Secondly, your season of singleness is set to transform your relationship with Christ. When you are single, you have extra time to devote your attention to The Lord because a significant other does not divide it. “An unmarried woman is concerned about the Lord’s affairs: her aim is to be devoted to the Lord in both body and spirit.” 1 Corinthians 7:34

    Finally, service. What does it mean to serve others? Good news is, service has an extraordinary variety: teaching, volunteering, donating, time, listening, praying, rejoicing with one another…the list goes on. What I have found that has brought me to absolutely thrive in my singleness is the act of service. If you were to have met me or know me you know my greatest battle is sitting still. Here’s why:

    I believe in pursuing each and everyday to the fullest.

    I believe in not taking life for granted.

    I believe in making the world a better place.

    I believe loving well and loving often is the greatest gift The Lord has given.

    I believe there is a man somewhere out there that The Lord is preparing for me.

    “Not all of us can do great things, but we can all do small things with great love.” –Mother Teresa

    Not only are you growing within yourself, but you are also sharing the same kind of love Jesus gives unto us. Serving in your extra time of singleness allows you to feel a sense of purpose, and know that even the smallest act is bettering the world.

    I have witnessed so much love and joy through Christ, and in all areas I partake in that I do not have any room in my heart to feel sorrow or insufficiency due to lacking a significant other.

    Use the gifts The Lord has blessed you with to touch the lives of others. Whether you want to believe it or not, He has bestowed something significant in each of us.

    “As each has received a gift, use it to serve one another, as good steward’s of God’s varied grace” 1 Peter 4:10

    From the beginning I asked, where does the love go in your singleness?

    I challenge you to love yourself, love those who are broken, love the gift of life, love those who can never love you back, love the fact that you have a purpose, and love Jesus is working and pursuing your heart every single day.

    Don’t lose faith. My time and your time will come. As for now

    take on the mission to pursue the act of servitude in your season of singleness.

     So, are you singleYes, and I’m happily embracing every single bit of it.

    “Ask and it will be given to you; seek and you will find; knock and the door will be opened to you. For everyone who asks receives; the one who seeks finds; and the one who knocks, the door WILL open” Luke 11:9-10