Thursday, January 23, 2020

Sarah, The Mother Of Nations

What struggles are you facing? Are you struggling in your marriage? Are you focusing on God and looking for His blessings?









It was 1995.





T and I had been trying for 4 1/2 years to get pregnant with our 2nd child. Every month, for that 4 1/2 year time frame, I would be depressed and cry as I faced the reality that I was not pregnant.





That was a hard time, in my life. I remember talking to one ob about everything and she suggested some things that might help. I told her that those things were too much like playing God. If He means for me to have another child, then I will. It was shortly after that visit that I got pregnant with Taylor.





Sadly, when you go through times in your life that cause you to face depression each month, it can also cause a strain on your marriage. You get so wrapped up in feeling like you are letting your husband down. You feel like a failure at everything that you do. Your focus is on the depression, the sadness.





I would like to encourage you to refocus your thoughts. Change the channel. Look to God for His care and guidance.





Let's read Genesis 17:15-16 about Sarai and how God blesses her.





Genesis 17:15-16 NIV 





God also said to Abraham, “As for Sarai your wife, you are no longer to call her Sarai; her name will be Sarah. I will bless her and will surely give you a son by her. I will bless her so that she will be the mother of nations; kings of peoples will come from her.”









Other translations: 





Genesis 17:15-16 GW 





God said to Abraham, “Don’t call your wife by the name Sarai anymore. Instead, her name is Sarah [Princess]. I will bless her, and I will also give you a son by her. I will bless her, and she will become ⌊a mother of⌋ nations, and kings will come from her.”





Genesis 17:15-16 NIRV 





God also said to Abraham, “Do not continue to call your wife by the name Sarai. Her name will be Sarah. I will give her my blessing. You can be sure that I will give you a son by her. I will bless her so that she will be the mother of nations. Kings of nations will come from her.”





Now remember that, at this point, Sarai is 89 years old. She has struggled with infertility for a very long time.




God blesses Sarai 






1. He changed her name from Sarai to Sarah <--- which means princess
2. He promised to give her His blessings
3. He promised to give her a son
4. He promised to bless her so that she would be the mother of nations
5. He promised that kings of nations would come from her






Prayer:




Dear Father, 




Thank you for the blessings that you poured out upon Sarah. Even in her old age, you blessed her with a son. Father, I pray that you will help me to slow down enough that I am able to see the many blessings that you reveal to me each day. Thank you for all that you do. In Jesus' name, Amen.















6 Ways The Lord Blesses You


Blessings In The Ordinary


Could You Trust?


Praying Scriptures For Your Marriage





















What struggles are you facing?
Are you struggling in your marriage?
Are you focusing on God and looking for His blessings?
How can I pray for you today?
If you will allow it, I will be happy to help carry your load.































Photo credit: fietzfotos on pixabay.com 

Thursday, January 16, 2020

6 Ways The Lord Blesses You

Where is your focus? Are you looking for the blessings that the Lord is revealing to you every day? Are you finding the positive things to focus on?








As someone who struggles with depression, I have to admit that it is often easier to find negative things to focus on.



This week, I have decided to finish up with writing out the book of Ezra. It has taken me longer than it should. I have learned that if I write too much, I then suffer with carpal tunnel syndrome pain. My hand and wrist will hurt the rest of the day :(.



That being said, I have put off my writing. I just do not want to hurt. Then this week, I felt lead to pick it up and finish it out. Push through it. As soon I started, determined as I was not to let my hand pain stop me; I developed a bad headache. Everyday that I have been determined to push through the pain in my hand, I have also had to deal with a headache.



I could sit here and focus on the negatives. I could give up. However, I am determined to look at it as what it is. I am under attack. I am doing what God is leading me to do. Need I say more?



Where is your focus, Leigha? I am trying to push past the pain in order to do what I feel the Lord is leading me to do. My focus is on finding the blessings as they are revealed to me from the Bible. My focus is also on finding the blessings in every day, ordinary life.









Looking out the window and watching a Downy Woodpecker feeding on a suet cake that we have hanging. Listening to the sound of a Goldfinch singing. Watching Penelope (one of our dogs) as she comes up to me with a huge smile on her face. Who said dogs don't smile?



Now read over 2 Corinthians 9:8-11 about God's blessings.



2 Corinthians 9:8-11 MSG 




God can pour on the blessings in astonishing ways so that you’re ready for anything and everything, more than just ready to do what needs to be done. As one psalmist puts it, He throws caution to the winds, giving to the needy in reckless abandon. His right-living, right-giving ways never run out, never wear out. This most generous God who gives seed to the farmer that becomes bread for your meals is more than extravagant with you. He gives you something you can then give away, which grows into full-formed lives, robust in God, wealthy in every way, so that you can be generous in every way, producing with us great praise to God.


His Blessings:




1. Are poured on us in astonishing ways


2. So we can be ready for anything and everything


3. Never run out or wear out


4. Provide seed which become bread for our meals


5. Reveal His extravagance with us


6. He blesses us so we can then bless others



Prayer:



Dear Father, 



Thank you for pouring your blessings on me in astonishing ways. Thank you for blessing me so that I am ready for anything and everything. Thank you for providing such blessings that never run out or wear out. Thank you for providing for my every need. Father, thank you for blessing me so much that it reveals how extravagant you are with me and my care. Thank you for blessing me so I can then bless others. In Jesus' name, Amen.














Blessings In The Ordinary


Blessings And Mercies And Grace


5 Easy Steps To Memorize Scripture


Patiently Pursues





















Where is your focus?
Are you looking for the blessings that the Lord is revealing to you every day?
Are you finding the positive things to focus on?
How can I pray for you today?
If you will allow it, I will be happy to help carry your load.


























Ps:



I am including the reading plan for February for you. It is called God's Love.











Pss:




I am also including Part 1 of the next writing plan. If you want to write along with me, feel free. I have decided to break the book down into very small sections <-- due to my carpal tunnel pain. The writing plan (part 1) is on Nehemiah.








Photo credit: barbara808 on pixabay.com 

Monday, January 13, 2020

Blessings In The Ordinary

Are you someone who can easily find the blessings as they are revealed to you? Or, do you have to spend a little more time focusing on the positive in order to find the blessings?










I struggle with anxiety and depression. That being said, I am someone that really has to "focus" on the positive things. I am someone that has to hunt for those blessings. Then once a blessing has been revealed to me, I have to stop and let it sink in. You know, one of those, " wow, that was actually a good thing that just happened. "





Sadly, I have been dealing more and more with depression lately. So, instead of allowing it a chance to get a foothold in my life, I am looking for those blessings.





Yesterday, T and I had our 6 month PC visit. What a pain!





I always dread going to our PC doctor. We show up early, but always get called back after our scheduled time.





I am at the point of not knowing what to say to our doctor because I feel like he doesn't listen to me. I always feel like I am rushed through.





I did not have any complaints to discuss, so I didn't talk too much about anything. My cholesterol is still scanning on the high side. It has been slowly going up every time I go.





Okay, so I may need to take cholesterol lowering medications, in the future, but I don't need to at this time. < ---- that was a positive thing











My blood pressure read on the good side. < --- that was a positive thing





Now, let's read over Genesis 1:27-31. This reading is about God creating mankind and blessing them.





Genesis 1:27-31 NIV 





So God created mankind in his own image, in the image of God he created them; male and female he created them. God blessed them and said to them, “Be fruitful and increase in number; fill the earth and subdue it. Rule over the fish in the sea and the birds in the sky and over every living creature that moves on the ground.” Then God said, “I give you every seed-bearing plant on the face of the whole earth and every tree that has fruit with seed in it. They will be yours for food. And to all the beasts of the earth and all the birds in the sky and all the creatures that move along the ground—everything that has the breath of life in it—I give every green plant for food.” And it was so. God saw all that he had made, and it was very good. And there was evening, and there was morning—the sixth day.





God created male and female and He blessed them. He tells them to be fruitful and increase in number; to fill the earth and subdue it. He blesses them with the fish, the birds and every other living creature. He blesses them with seed bearing plants and fruit trees. He, finally, sees all that He has done and declares it very good.





When you look over your ordinary, are you able to find the blessings? I promise you that the blessings are there. You just need to slow down and adjust your focus.





Prayer: 



Dear Father, 



Thank you for Adam and Eve. Thank you for blessing them. Father, thank you for all that you do for me. Thank you for the way that you provide for my needs. Thank you for the many blessings you have poured out upon my life. In Jesus' name, Amen.













Blessings And Mercies And Grace


5 Easy Steps To Memorize Scripture


Reflecting Over 2019


Remember, You Are Seen

























Are you someone who can easily find the blessings as they are revealed to you?
Or, do you have to spend a little more time focusing on the positive in order to find the blessings?
How can I pray for you today?
If you will allow it, I will be happy to help carry your load.






























Photo credit: suju on pixabay.com 

Thursday, January 9, 2020

Blessings And Mercies And Grace

Blessings, do you see them when they are revealed? Do you need to change your focus?










This morning, during my quiet time, this verse really spoke to me. So, I decided to spend some time studying on it. One reason that it stood out is because I am studying on blessings, favor, grace. So when I read that the Lord "blesses the righteous " and He "surrounds them with favor" .... well, the verse just jumped out at me.





I decided to SOAP the verse for you.





S:




Psalm 5:12 NIV 





Surely, Lord , you bless the righteous; you surround them with your favor as with a shield.





Other Translations:  





Psalm 5:12 ESV 





For you bless the righteous, O Lord ; you cover him with favor as with a shield.





Psalm 5:12 CEV 





Our Lord , you bless those who live right, and you shield them with your kindness.





Psalm 5:12 GNT 





You bless those who obey you, Lord ; your love protects them like a shield.










O:




According to Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible (Biblehub.com)






The Lord blesses the righteous with forgiveness of sins
Blesses us with peace and prosperity
Blesses us with spiritual blessings, blessings of grace and glory in the hereafter
The Lord's grace and mercies are what encompass us
His grace and mercies flow and overflow, surrounding us on all sides
His grace and mercies are a shield protecting us from our enemies





A: 





I need to keep my focus on the Lord
I need to focus more on the blessings and grace that are being poured out upon me
I need to trust that Lord will guide my steps and protect me from harm





P:





Prayer:





Dear Father, 





Thank you for all that you do for me. Father, I pray that you will help me to keep my focus on you. Help me to focus more on the blessings that are being revealed to me. Help me to trust that you are always there guiding each step that I take. In Jesus' name, Amen.





Personal prayer: 





Dear Father, 





I pray that you will bless ______ and surround ______ with your favor like a shield ( Psalm 5:12 ). In Jesus' name, Amen. 











5 Easy Steps To Memorize Scripture


Patiently Pursues


SOAP STUDY PART4


Easy To Use Bible Study Method






















Blessings, do you see them when they are revealed?
Do you need to change your focus?
How can I pray for you today?
If you will allow it, I will be happy to help carry your load.



























Photo credit: pexels on pixabay.com 

Monday, January 6, 2020

5 Easy Steps To Memorize Scripture

Have you ever wanted to memorize scripture? Is the thought of trying to memorize scripture something that overwhelms you? Do you feel lost and not sure where or how to begin?










I have to admit that memorizing scripture is something that I need to work on. It is an area that I want to "focus" more time and attention, this year.





Remember that everything is a work in progress. Keep trying. If you find yourself struggling along the way, try again. It is not a competition.




Memorization Tips






1. Pick out your verse 





Once you have your verse picked out, start reading it over





2. Write out your verse 





Write out your verse on an index card and keep it close by. Write your verse in a journal. Keep it visible.





3. Make a wallpaper with your verse 





If you are creative, this is the point where you make a wallpaper, for your phone or computer, using your verse. If you are not creative, try looking on google or pinterest for images using your verse.





4. Keep reading over your verse 





Read over your verse





5. Close your eyes and recall the verse 





Every time you log in to your computer, turn on your phone, look at your index card, close your eyes and recall the verse. * I personally, break the verse into small chunks. I read one small chunk about 5 times, then I will close my eyes and recall what I just read. Then I move on to doing the same thing with the next chunk until I have the verse memorized.





For example, the memory verse that I am sharing this week is:





1 Corinthians 16:13 NIV 





Be on your guard; stand firm in the faith; be courageous; be strong.




I will read over the " Be on your guard; " chunk for about 5 times. Then I will close my eyes and recall it for 5 times. Then I will read over the " stand firm in the faith; " chunk for five times. Then close my eyes and recall it. Then I put it together with the first chunk. And then I will read over the " be courageous; be strong. " chunk for 5 times. Then close my eyes and recall it and then put it together with the other chunk.










I, honestly, think, that what helps me is that I make myself stop, close my eyes and say the verse. Every. Time. I. Turn. On. My. Computer.




5 Verses About Memorizing Scripture 






Have you ever wondered what bible verses speak to memorizing scripture? I know I was curious about this.





Psalm 119:11 NIV 





I have hidden your word in my heart that I might not sin against you.





Colossians 3:16 ESV 





Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly, teaching and admonishing one another in all wisdom, singing psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, with thankfulness in your hearts to God.





Psalm 37:31 ESV 





The law of his God is in his heart; his steps do not slip.





John 15:7 NIV 





If you remain in me and my words remain in you, ask whatever you wish, and it will be done for you.





Proverbs 30:5 ESV 





Every word of God proves true; he is a shield to those who take refuge in him.








Patiently Pursues


One Word Tips


SOAP Study Part4


Handwriting The Scriptures





















Have you ever wanted to memorize scripture?
Is the thought of trying to memorize scripture something that overwhelms you?
Do you feel lost and not sure where or how to begin?
How can I pray for you today?
If you will allow it, I will be happy to help carry your load.






























Photo credit: thebooksupplier on pixabay.com


















Thursday, January 2, 2020

Patiently Pursues

Have you ever felt that the Lord was leading you to do something? However, this task, that you feel lead to do, is not something that you want to do. Do you follow where the Lord leads you? Or do you fight against Him, kicking and screaming?










I remember, it was 2005.





I had been having dreams of going back to work. First off, I will say that I do not handle change well, at all. So these dreams were not pleasant for me.





My youngest was in the 1st grade. I had already started volunteering at the elementary library a couple of days a week. And I loved it! So, why did I need to have an actual job?





The more that I fought against these feelings and dreams, the more of them I had. It was apparent that the Lord wanted me to go back to work.





So, I needed to stop fighting against Him and let His will be done.





I had not worked for over 10 years. The last two places that I worked had closed down. Did not matter. God sent me where He wanted me. I do believe it was the second place that I went, btw.





I worked in child care, taking care of the newborns. It was a struggle for me, most days, but I still got up and went, every day. I worked there for 3 years.





In those three years, the Lord helped us to fix up our place and sell it and allowed us to move into a house. Once we had settled into our house, T got a promotion at work and I was able to quit my job and stay home, again.





Yes, I did fight against having to go back to work. However, I am so glad that I finally gave up on that fight and let the Lord lead me.










Now, let's read Genesis 32:22-32 about Jacob wrestling with God.





Genesis 32:22-32 NIV 





That night Jacob got up and took his two wives, his two female servants and his eleven sons and crossed the ford of the Jabbok. After he had sent them across the stream, he sent over all his possessions. So Jacob was left alone, and a man wrestled with him till daybreak. When the man saw that he could not overpower him, he touched the socket of Jacob’s hip so that his hip was wrenched as he wrestled with the man. Then the man said, “Let me go, for it is daybreak.” But Jacob replied, “I will not let you go unless you bless me.” The man asked him, “What is your name?” “Jacob,” he answered. Then the man said, “Your name will no longer be Jacob, but Israel, because you have struggled with God and with humans and have overcome.” Jacob said, “Please tell me your name.” But he replied, “Why do you ask my name?” Then he blessed him there. So Jacob called the place Peniel, saying, “It is because I saw God face to face, and yet my life was spared.” The sun rose above him as he passed Peniel, and he was limping because of his hip. Therefore to this day the Israelites do not eat the tendon attached to the socket of the hip, because the socket of Jacob’s hip was touched near the tendon.




Even Jacob wrestled with God.



Stop for a moment and let that thought sink in.



Jacob wrestled with God. So when you feel overwhelmed by something that you feel the Lord is leading you to do, remember that you are in good company.



Not only did Jacob wrestle with God, but he survived AND he received a blessing.



Yes, yes, yes, I know, he also ended up with a wrenched hip which to me just means that it is better not to fight against what God is calling you to do.



Prayer:



Dear Father, 



Thank you for Jacob. Thank you for wrestling with him to help him clearly see what you needed him to see. Father, thank you for allowing me times where I can kick and scream against you. Thank you, also, for lovingly and patiently pursuing me. In Jesus' name, Amen.














Reflecting Over 2019


Could You Trust?


Humble Beginnings


Remember, You Are Seen




















Have you ever felt that the Lord was leading you to do something?
However, this task, you felt lead to do, is not something that you want to do.
Do you follow where the Lord leads?
Or do you fight against Him, kicking and screaming?
How can I pray for you today?
If you will allow it, I will be happy to help carry your load.





























Photo credit: lavnatalia on pixabay.com 

Monday, December 30, 2019

Reflecting Over 2019

Where is your focus? Are you in need of renewal? Are you looking for peace? It is time to reflect over 2019.










My word for 2019 has been Renew. Throughout the month of October, I posted a blog post every day on the topic of Rest. Be sure to scan through them. I will let you know, straight up, that posting every day, for 31 days, was challenging. But I did it :).





One of my biggest struggles, this year, has been stomach related. I felt like a ball that was being tossed back and forth between doctors. My primary care doctor was of no help to me, what so ever. So, I took the issue to my gynecologist who started testing me for ovarian cancer ( which, praise the Lord, I do not have ). Then, through her, I was referred to a gastroenterologist who set up a colonoscopy and an endoscopy.





Through the colonoscopy, I found out that I have diverticulosis. Through the endoscopy, I found out that I have esophageal something or other which I am now treating with prilosec. I also found out that my c rings are flattening. This is a sign of celiac's disease. Praise the Lord, I do not have celiac's disease. Although, I have found that by going completely gluten free, I feel so much better. I can now eat again because I feel hungry. Before, I only ate because I had to take pills.





So praises that my stomach issues have now been figured out. Woop, woop!





I just recently went to my endocrinologist and we decided to only do an mri of my pituitary if/when there are any changes with my vision. I talked to her again about my bad headaches. I told her that I have at least two really bad headache days a week. Meaning, I wake up with this bad headache and have it all day long.





She suggested trying to take a small dose of hydrocortisone at bedtime to see if that helps. I do not want to jinx anything, but I have only had a couple of headaches since I have been doing this. And, and, and, only one of them was a bad one.





Now, it is time to start looking ahead, into 2020. My word for the year is Focus and no, believe it or not, I didn't pick the word as a play on 2020.










I struggle with depression, anxiety, negative thoughts a lot. I hope to spend more time this year "focused" on the Lord than on negative things. I hope to focus on being more positive, more thankful. I know, right now, that I am going to need help with this. Care to ask me, from time to time, "Hey, Leigha, where is your focus"?





I have picked out two verses for 2020. Oh, but there are so many others.






Philippians 4:8 GNT 





In conclusion, my friends, fill your minds with those things that are good and that deserve praise: things that are true, noble, right, pure, lovely, and honorable.





Colossians 3:2 TLV 





Focus your mind on things above, not on things on the earth.






Blessings to you through 2020.




Prayer:




Dear Father,




It is my prayer that you will help me to focus my mind on things that are good and deserve praise; things that are true, noble, right, pure, lovely and honorable. Help me, Father, to focus my thoughts on things that are above and not on things on the earth ( Philippians 4:8, Colossians 3:2 ). Thank you for everything that you helped me through in 2019 and for all of the blessings you revealed. I pray that your will be done in the coming year. In Jesus' name, Amen.















Could You Trust?


Humble Beginnings


Remember, You Are Seen


Farewell 2018



















Where is your focus?
Are you in need of renewal?
Are you looking for peace?
How can I pray for you today?
If you will allow it, I will be happy to help carry your load.





























Bonus****





I have put together 6 printables for you. If your word for the year is Hope, Faith, Trust, Peace, Renew or Focus, then feel free to grab your Freebie :).





      



















Sarah, The Mother Of Nations

What struggles are you facing? Are you struggling in your marriage? Are you focusing on God and looking for His blessings? It w...