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Time to Rewire

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My flippin Christmas tree fell down.  Like, totally fell down. We have like a 12 foot, real tree and the sucker fell.  I couldn’t believe it. I just got done decorating the whole thing and not 2 hours later I’m standing in the kitchen and BAM, to the ground it went.  I was so mad and truth be told, it had just been a long week already so this topped it off. Needless to say, I texted my hubby with some not so beautiful words.  I was like, we aren’t having Christmas, it’s over. Nothing like a bit of drama on my part right? Leading up to this though, there’s been so much negative inside of me.  My thoughts, my feelings have just been…..ick. It’s not like it was my husbands fault that the tree fell but I just exploded negativity because, well, that’s what was hanging out in my brain. He did completely put it back up but we may or may not have had to anchor it into the wall but hey, the bad boy is up and looking nice.

How do you see yourself? This question popped into my lovely mind this morning as I now realize the nasty that I brought. Is there so much negative inside of your mind that you begin to believe it?  I’m seeing that the way we see and feel about ourselves sets the tone for what kind of relationships we end up having. When you look in the mirror, what kind of words come back at you? Ugly, stupid, strange, unworthy, not enough or beautiful, strong, fierce, determined, warrior. When I allow the negative thoughts to continue to roll inside my head, I then carry that with me throughout the day, throughout my life.  The way I end up responding to others and connecting with them totally turns ugly fast. The reality is, what kind of relationship you have with yourself, determines what kind of relationship you will have with others. This is a hard one for me. I’m sure it can be for you as well. We easily believe the lies that are rolling inside of us because they become so strong. We want others to tell us how wonderful we are, or beautiful, or smart, and the list goes on. Here’s the thing though, in a matter of 5 minutes, those awesome compliments will be long gone once one lie rears its ugly head once again.  Totally not saying to not compliment and love on each other but if we determine our worth by what others are saying to us, we are going down a slippery slope. We were created so specifically, so uniquely by God that we need to rest in the fact that we are the bomb. The negativity that stirs around inside your head is nothing but junk from the devil. He knows how to get to us and the only way to kick him in the butt is to start believing the truth. 

It’s time for us to start rewiring our brains. When negativity starts to seep in, hit it straight on with words like, I am enough, I am a fighter, I am a warrior, I am beautiful, I am a Child of God, I am a kick butt son of a gun who will go and do some serious damage with my big bad self in this life. We’ve got this.  Together we can shift our thoughts so that those we love around us will know how much they are loved. 

“Self-love is not selfish; you cannot truly love another until you know how to love yourself”

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The Blame Game

Someone tooted in the car.  You just can’t do that. Not with 6 people in it. Yes, that’s right, this devo is starting out with someone tooting and there will be deep thoughts ha. We blamed my oldest cause well, as my middle explained it, it smelled like his. Hahaha.  He, of course, is like, don’t blame me, I didn’t do it. We go on to be like, oh, ok. Next thing you know, my youngest chimes in, ‘he didn’t do it!’ (Enter in smirk face) We all bust out laughing and of course, give him the hard time. 

I don’t blame. I can’t.  There are some days I want too but it does me no good. For a very long period of time, I blamed myself. Shaming myself. Thinking something was wrong with me. I’ve talked about this in another devo but forgiveness happens inside of us so that we can move forward and heal.  It allows what happened to you or to me to move from a prison into a place of freedom. When we continue to blame, we continually bring ourselves back into that prison. It’s hard for me to write this because I’ll be honest, I sure as heck am not perfect at it everyday, but I try. Things get stirred up, people say things, or images get slapped back into my brain and I just want to lose it. In the end though, I get hurt.  It hurts mine and your heart because those that have hurt us, have their own pain to deal with. They have no idea what is happening inside of us. God is a God of mercy and also a God of justice. In Colossians 3;25 it says, “For he who does wrong will receive the consequences of the wrong which he has done, and that without partiality.”  I’m not trying to be all harsh and stuff cause Lord knows I’ve done my own crazy not-so-good stuff but with the abuse that was done to me, this brings me peace.  It allows me to forgive and not blame because God oversees justice. It’s not my job. The outcome of horrible situations in your life you can’t change or make go away but you can control how you react and move forward.  Obviously, you need to allow yourself times of anger, sadness, grieving, and the list goes on. I still go through phases of these but for me, knowing that Christ has the ultimate say on what goes down with those who have hurt me or you, is comfort.  

We need to stay in our lane. We need to stay focused on how far we’ve come.  We need to see the beauty that rests around us because of what we’ve already overcome.  Rome wasn’t built in a day. Although I do feel that if women would’ve built it………..ok, I won’t go there! Haha. Surround yourself with the beauty of truth.  God is the ultimate judge and you, you are the ultimate fighter. 

“Blaming puts others in charge of your happiness.”

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Be Real, Be You

“Mom, STOP!” Those silent but deadly words were being spoken to me while I was jamming out to Britney Spears at Bdubs one wonderful day with my kids. Maybe, just maybe, I was moving and grooving to some serious tunes before getting our delicious boneless wings.  This doesn’t surprise them in the least but they do keep trying to tame me down hahaha! Something to do with being embarrassed or something. I ask them to join in but it still hasn’t happened yet. Maybe one day. 

It’s me. It’s authentic. Becoming who we truly are and being grounded in it allows others to gravitate toward us and feel safe. My kids probably question their safety! haha! This, becoming who we truly are, has been a learning process for me.  I’ve always been more of the, let’s just say, outspoken and eccentric one of the group. This wasn’t always accepted with open arms growing up. It made me question if I was suppose to change, be something that I wasn’t.  Doesn’t help that this world puts labels on people, puts us in a box of what we should and shouldn’t be depending on our culture or religion or color or status, or whatever. That’s just a bunch of BS. It gets me a bit fired up.  God created each one of us so incredibly different and unique. No one gets to have a say on what’s right or wrong or who is better than who. Not sure who died and left anyone else king but I’m pretty sure there is just one King that I know of.  Isaiah 64:8 “We are the clay, and You our Potter, And we all are the works of Your hand.”  He doesn’t make crap and He doesn’t make anyone the same.  Stand in who you are. You want to dance? Dance! You need to cry? Cry!  You need to swear sometimes? Let it go! Just maybe give a warning to your kids. Ha! You see where I’m going with this.  Yes, our God is a God of boundaries but He is also a real and true God. He wants to see you be you. The good, the bad, and the ugly. 

Here’s the coolest part of my story.  Not a few hours before my Britney dance off did my kids see me balling my eyes out. I had a therapy session that dug deep into the heart of my abuse. They asked if I was ok and I told them what was up.  I was real. We hugged it out, went to eat and then I danced it out because friends, life is too beautiful to hide behind. Life is meant to be authentic, genuine, and alive. Whether it looks messy or all the pieces fit together, it’s real. If we all learned to live in the beauty of it, we will all start dancing to Britney together. 

“Be real…….Be YOU!”

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Credit is Due

 Ladies and gents, this momma had a real rock star moment. Let me just fill you in.  I was so ready, so on it. Another headache was on tap for my 8 year old in the back seat and when I turned around, total pale face.  I knew exactly what that meant. We had been in the car for at least 12 hours at this point and we were so close to being home. You see, my fam road trips everywhere.  With 4 kids, there is no way we are paying for plane tickets anywhere so if they wanted to see somewhere other than the flat lands of Illinois, than welcome to my wonderful SUV for the next 2 days! Hahaha. Any who…..back to my rock star moment. I told him to just lay down for a bit, after giving him some medicine, to see if that helped.  While he tried to rest, I got everything ready. I put about 6 target bags inside of one other and got some freshener spray prepared. After about a ½ hour I hear a moan….. I turn around…….. I see a wide eyed boy…… I put the million target bags under his mouth…….he lets loose….…..I tie it up and whip it out the window (don’t tell the police)……..then spray a bit and BAM…….life resumed as if the rainbow in the sky had never left the building. My other three were so impressed with my skills they were speechless.  SPEECHLESS I tell you. They also couldn’t stop laughing because I threw the puke out the window but what’s a women suppose to do? There were 3 hours left. Ain’t no way I was hanging out in the car with puke. Nope! Nada! Not happening! 

So now you are all like, great story Heather, but is there even a point to it?  Maybe or maybe I just wanted you all to know how incredibly amazing I was. Joking. I really do have a point. When I stepped away from this situation, I was like, dude, I don’t give myself enough credit for what I can do or what I’m able to do or what I’m capable of doing or what I’ve already done, and I guarantee, neither do you. Let’s dig a little deeper than a puke episode. We are stronger than the words or daggers that are thrown at us. We are bigger than any stupid social media post that rile us up.  We are more powerful than the unknown, the loss of a job, depression, anxiety, abuse, and so much more. We HAVE already overcome heartache that has been thrown our way as we’ve walked through life so far, so what makes us think we aren’t capable of plowing through what lies ahead. Here is the kicker, we don’t even have too. It says at the end of John 16:33, “In the world you have tribulation and distress and suffering, but be courageous, I have overcome the world.”  Our rock star moments exist every freaking day because we have the overcoming power of Jesus Christ living inside of us.  Whether it’s an amazing idea of throwing puke out of a window or having strength to fight through deep rooted pain, we can and we will because of Him. 

You are incredible. Moments that wreck you, empower you.  Moments that throw you into a whirlwind only make you stand taller in your next storm. Rock star status. That’s you! Don’t forget it! 

“Life is not about how you survive the storm.  It’s about how you dance in the rain.”

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Step Out

I had a beautiful, beautiful soul share this with me:

Feel like everything is falling apart, but in reality everything is coming together for your highest good.  You’re being pushed to evolve and get out of your comfort zone so you can live and experience your true greatness.  Welcome change. Trust the process.’

I’m pretty sure I’ve read it a thousand times.  Different words, phrases popping out in different ways, on different days. Welcome change!  That’s a big one for me. I’m sure for some of you too. Change is hard but can be oh so good and freeing. Things can be falling apart around us but are they?  In reality, are they really just piecing together the way they were always meant to be? They were maybe glued together the wrong way in the first place right? We’ve gotta continue to press forward.  Fight. I think of the words at the end of Philippians 3:13 where it says…”but one thing I do, forgetting what lies behind and reaching forward to what lies ahead.” As long as we continue to attach ourselves to our past, even to things that happened to us just yesterday or a few minutes ago, we are denying the things that Christ wants for our future.  It’s almost like we are putting our own road blocks up ya know? 

Please understand, I’m like not wanting to write this right now cause then I’ve gotta do what I’m preaching ha ha! It’s hard to let go. It’s hard to step out of our comfort zone.  What does that look like for you, stepping out of your comfort zone? Therapy? Reaching out to friends? Trying something new? Being honest with yourself? Stepping out of your comfort zone usually makes you want to puke at first.  Just saying. But in the end, it’s the most fulfilling and life changing experience. 

True greatness is inside of you.  True greatness is inside of me. God will not let go. He will not let go.  When I hold onto my past, sometimes I get stuck in asking, where were you? Where were you God?  Why? Why did you let him hurt me? Why did you let bad things happen? Why didn’t you save me? And the questions go on and on until my face is swollen with tears. I won’t sit in that though because I know that God was crying with me.  God was hurting with me. There’s evil in this world and we still have flesh and free will. There were wrong choices made and I was the one hurt in the end BUT I NOW HAVE THE VICTORY because of Jesus. You have victory too. Trust the process. Your true greatness awaits.

“In the waves of change, we find our direction”

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Here We Go Again

I couldn’t breathe.  I almost woke up my hubby but then I was like, nah, I’m ok.  Because that’s how we roll right? We all don’t ask for help very easily.  I honestly thought maybe it was just an addition to the cold I had. My thought was it was probably heading into my chest and I just needed some medicine.  Let’s fast forward to after the cold went away and the elephant on my chest still remained. I knew exactly what was going on. Crap. Here it is again. Anxiety.  Panic attacks. Ugh. Rough. They are rough friends. Anxiety blows. I truly believe everyone has experienced it on some level. There are a few of us that get kicked in the butt a bit harder.  

When things outside of our control start to feel like they are spiraling, I find that’s when the elephant likes to rear its ugly head.  As I continue to dig deeper into the loss of pieces torn off my soul from the abuse, I realize I’m in this unknown territory, hence the feeling of no control. What does life look like without the hurt? What do I feel about myself? What am I gonna do when I grow up? haha BUT step back friends. Let’s step back a moment. Unknown territory. This could be exciting. When we hit a place where we let go of what’s causing the elephant to exist in our lives, we get to start a new chapter.  Fresh pages. Nothing on them. It’s really not a loss of control but yet a new control. It’s all in our mind set. How we look at our moving forward will determine how our next chapter will look. I know I’ve used this verse before but I really don’t care cause I love it ha! Isaiah 43:19 “Be Alert, be present.  I’m about to do something brand new. It’s bursting out! Don’t you see it?  There it is! I’m making a road through the desert, rivers in the badlands.” Brand new!  New chapter! Fresh start! He’s doing something.  Stupid elephants, tigers, and bears will come out and try to steal your joy but in the end, you will not be defeated.  For your ending is well, never ending because it’s got a Jesus stamp all over it. 

Shifting our mind set is huge.  What are we truly seeing? Fear is a liar. Fear traps us and makes us believe we can’t move forward.  Fear stops us in our tracks so the next chapter of beauty, renewing, joy, can’t be written. Fear can control you.  Don’t let that dirty jerk of a thing even see the light of day in the name of Jesus. You deserve everything Jesus and this beautiful earth has to offer.  Big things are in store for every chapter in your book. Remember, every chapter, each season will look different yet has purpose and can have joy depending on how you read and perceive it. 

“You can’t reach for anything new if your hands are full of yesterday’s junk.”

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Pick It

You need to pick your weeds.  No, you don’t need to pick your nose.  Although, on a side note, do you ever look over while driving to find your spouse halfway up their face and you’re like, did I know this about you before I married you? Hahahaha.  Ok, back to God stuff.  So maybe saying, you need to pull your weeds, would be better.

There are some weeds out there that are actually beautiful.  Like, they have some beautiful flowers that you wouldn’t even expect them to be weeds. They mask themselves pretty well.  Then there are some that you curse at when going to pull them out cause those prickly things get stuck in your fingers. You see where I’m going with this.  There are things in our lives we need to get out. Some may look beautiful on the outside but truth be told, they are killing us deep within. They aren’t allowing us to grow.  They aren’t allowing us to heal. Back in the day, I never said ‘No.’ I filled my life up so much that I couldn’t breathe yet the world saw me. It felt good to be so acknowledged and needed but did it?  It looked great on the outside, but it ended up making me crabby, tired, weary, and leaving my family by the wayside. Not cool in my eyes. Beautiful weeds, they needed to be plucked. The prickly weeds.  The ones that just keep coming back, ha. The ones that you know are hurting you yet you keep allowing them to hang around. Dude, that crap needs to go. Whether it’s a toxic relationship, maybe social media spirals you, those negative thoughts, I mean, we’ve all got them, it’s just a matter of facing them and yanking them out. We’ve chatted, well, I’ve chatted, about all kinds of prickly weeds in my life.  Truth, I may pull them, but that doesn’t mean they don’t try and grow back. It doesn’t mean that when crap hits the fan, I don’t think about cutting sometimes or falling back into victim mode from my past but friend, that’s when you get that weed killer out and you’re like BAM, no way, I’m moving forward, and kill that sucker. 

Psalm 16:11 says, “You will show me the path of life; In your presence is fullness of joy; In your right hand there are pleasures forevermore.”  I want that.  I want to weed out all the crap so that every seed I have worked so hard to plant grows so strong that those darn weeds can’t even show their ugly heads anymore. I want to be living in the fullness of joy with my Jesus.  Let’s do that. Ready. Set. Break. Oh, and FYI, in case you didn’t know, you are pretty killer. Like, you’ve got this. Warrior status, my friend, warrior status! 

“Don’t let the tall weeds cast a shadow on the beautiful flowers in your garden.”