Life is a journey of our greatest hopes along with our most wounded scars. We can rise above the earth shattering moments when we learn to gaze on the beauty from above. You are not alone. We stand together as we embrace our shields and rise.
Merry Christmas my sweet friends. May these next few days bring you glimpses of joy and moments of happiness. For many of us, it can stir up different emotions and maybe even cause sadness whether it’s because of broken relationships, deep pain reignited, a loved one not around and the list goes on. You know what though? Christmas didn’t exist because of the perfect gift that was bought or a perfect relationship or a perfect life that was led. Christmas exists because of the brokenness of the world. Christmas exists because we needed love to come into the world to meet us exactly where we are at. Christmas exists because that baby boy needed to come and tell you and I that we are loved.
We are all beautifully broken people. Every time we break, we become a little more alive and every time we break, we allow Christ to show us why He decided to come and walk the earth. He wanted to know your brokenness. To feel your brokenness. To heal your brokenness. So celebrate that in these next few days. Let your soul rest in the beauty of why He came, for you.
Love you my friends. I’m forever grateful to you for allowing me to have a place to unload and be real. Now go get cookies and milk ready. Santa doesn’t like to be hungry. 🙂
He bought the ring. The ring. The one I wanted yet it was too late. This was after I had tried to commit suicide and things were starting to really heal. Don’t get me wrong, my boyfriend at the time was super there for me through some super hellish times but also decided to fling it up towards the end with someone else so…….. Once he saw how well I was doing and what Christ was doing in my life, the ring appeared. My new beginning looked different now. He had to understand that. It was a hard conversation and heartbreaking but in the end we both have beautiful lives that God had intended in the long run.
Sometimes we have to realize that moving forward means that we need to let go. It could be letting go of things, ideas, people, etc. Going back to what we’ve always known only puts us back into the darkness we’ve been trying to constantly fight our way out of. The relationship I was in was needed at the time. It was one of the darkest times of my life and he was there but as my new beginning began, I was in a different place. You see, sometimes you will heal and move forward and find yourself in a different lane than others. There isn’t a right or wrong lane but there are definitely different paths that we each walk. This is when you have to step back and say, what do I need? Who do I need? What feeds my soul? Who feeds my soul? I know, this is killer cause we actually have to think of ourselves. Honestly though, maybe it’s because I’m getting older or something, but I’m so tired of stupid. I’m done with the drama. I’m just ready for the simplicity of love and kindness that feeds into my life. You and I have worked our lovely butts off to get to a place of healing and truth that I truly believe we are allowed to decide who is walking on our paths. Ha. Proverbs 3:17 “Her ways are pleasant; all her paths are peaceful.” Yes Lord! I want a path of peace. Can I get an Amen!
Moving forward. New beginnings. It’s important to remember that God’s got you. Although everyone’s path is different, there’s always one thing the same, Jesus is walking with each of us. That’s where our simplicity is. That’s where our love and kindness rests. That’s where there’s no drama. Do you realize how loved you are? Do you realize how incredibly powerful and strong you are? Well, I’m here to tell you that you are. Keep your head held high as you walk your dream. Hold on tight to Him and watch what He does.
“Not all storms come to disrupt your life, some come to clear your path.”
Talk about feeling like rockstar status. Years ago I had some good times singing in bars and restaurants. I mean, as a musician, this is where you kind of find your niche for a while ya know? AND…..we all know this is totally my kind of people. Real, down to earth, few too many drinks and we are all singing and dancing…..well…..that began to be an issue for sure. I was still looking to numb anything that came up in my life and let me tell you, well some of you probably already have experienced it yourself, drinking will numb anything that comes your way. Late nights turned into late drinking turned into coming home late turned into a hot mess. My kids were super little and hello, someone still needed to take care of them the next day. Things quickly escalated and everything blew up. I quickly realized that things needed to change but not without sitting in some serious shame. Oh shame, the name of the game.
This was a dark time and the dark time made me sit in the guilt and shame for a while. It makes me angry because it’s so not from God. The devil takes this and runs. Yes, we screw up, everyday, but there are new mercies every morning. His grace covers us every step of the way. Isaiah 54:10 says, “For the mountains may depart and the hills be removed, but my steadfast love shall not depart from you…..” It’s not like we screw up and God’s like, well now we can’t talk to each other for a few days cause I’m super ticked off. God isn’t fickle like humans can be. His love is unconditional. We screw up and when we come and be like, dude, I totally screwed up, he’s like, yea I know, gives us a big hug and moves on. It would be our doing that places the shame and guilt on ourselves. Yea, so let’s stop doing that. Guilt and shame kill and destroy. It brings on other emotions like fear, anxiety, sadness, emotions that don’t lead us anywhere good. There are times that we need to look into the mirror and say, we did what we did, thinking it’s what was best, and now we move forward. Isn’t it crazy how if a friend would come to you pouring out their soul in regards to a tough past situation, you’d hug and love on them saying it’s ok, but yet that same kindness, you or I don’t show to ourselves. No, not right. It’s time we treat ourselves with truth. The truth of kindness and love that others and Christ show towards us.
Another thing, you have the power to make your light at the end of the tunnel. In this time of my life, it’s what I was looking for. I was allowing others and other things to be the light at the end of my tunnel so to speak. You need to light that baby up yourself. You get to choose what’s going to bring you joy and rejuvenate the inmost depths of your soul or what is going to knock it down. Don’t allow someone else or something else to light that candle for you. You’ve got the power to shine bright and follow that light to the end. Go get it!
“Within you is the power to rise above any situation or struggle, and transform into the brightest, strongest version of you EVER!”
The chapter needed to end. The page needed to be turned and quickly. The monster that had taken over my body for so many years had to be destroyed. A few months back I came to a breaking point with my eating disorder. It was destroying me and I had to look it straight in the eyes and tackle it head on. I knew it was the last piece of the healing puzzle. It was also the piece that the devil was using to hold me down. Being able to see my body as a beautiful image of God is so foreign and, I thought, out of my reach so I just constantly attacked it. Undoing the thoughts that my body was an object, no good, not enough, ugly, and the list goes on from the abuse that never left my mind, seemed like it was beyond my reach. There came a day that I lost it. The control that it had over me came to a quick reality. The circumstances around me were gonna leave me with choices I didn’t want to make. It was time to end the chapter.
We’ve all been here too many times right? We know we need to start writing chapter 3 yet we are stuck in chapter 2 because if we let it go, we don’t know what the next page will bring. The unknown is scary. Crap friends, this past month and a half has been nothing short of…….bring me back to chapter 2 please!! Haha. The freedom only lies on the other side. I have seen that in my own healing time and time again and I’m sure you’ve seen it in your own life. We hold onto what we think we can control and what will serve us in the end. In reality though, it’s stopping us from moving into another chapter of blessing and healing, the next level of joy and peace. For me, I just don’t want to be a prisoner anymore of things that don’t serve me toward a better future that I’ve worked so darn hard for. I want that for you also. In 2 Peter 1:3a “By His divine power the Lord has given us everything we need for life……” If we rest in Him, like truly give it, He provides everything we need. I want to control everything around me, ha. Imagine that. When in reality, it ends up hurting me in the end. We end up questioning our worth. We end up questioning our future.
My heart’s desire for you and me is for us to see ourselves as Christ sees us: Beautiful, intelligent, strong, confident, enough, bad arses (cause he does), and warriors. This is the truth that we are gonna stand in.
Our next chapter will be titled, Look At Me Now!
“Sometimes the smallest step in the right direction ends up being the biggest step of your life.”
No we don’t need to hold a burning ball to better us. Ha! Although I’m sure we all have a few things we’d like to burn and throw but that’s for another devo. I did come across an article though that really struck a cord with me and I wanted to share some of it with you. Maybe you’ll be like, ok Heather, already been there done that. Just humor me then because there were a few things that I really needed to hear and maybe it will open your eyes too.
As I was scrolling through my feed on fb, I came across an article that intrigued me so I opened it. It’s title had something to do about the choices we make and how it affects our lives. They had simple yet deep steps to really be able to use each day to better ourselves. So here we go.
Let Go of the Past: Blah! This one is always a hard one for me. It’s easy to have it rear it’s ugly head when things are triggered yet I feel like that’s normal for all of us. Instead, how about when it does come up, we acknowledge it and then release it. Not only does this pertain to back in the day but also to like yesterday. Holding onto grudges or things that just happened to us can eat us up inside and destroy our happiness. Like we’ve talked before, the past does not define who we are so why are we holding onto to it.
Don’t Take Things Too Personally: I literally laughed out loud at this one. I take EVERYTHING personally. My assumption is everything and everyone is out to get me. This one really hit home with me and one a really want to work on. A lot of it has to do with our confidence and what we are grounded in. Is it in Jesus or the outside world? We overthink everything, or at least I do, which in turn makes us take things personally. No one is out to get us. Everyone is in the same boat, dealing with their own hardships.
Choose Less over more: I like this one. Declutter baby. In every aspect of your life! Things, people, activities, social media, etc. What serves your soul and what doesn’t? This one has me really and truly thinking. This is a journaler (I don’t think that’s a word but it is now!) Need to make a list and process this one.
Appreciate What You Have: Being grateful. We’ve heard this over and over. The more we live in gratitude for the things we do have, the less we live in negativity. You begin to appreciate the things around you instead of seeing all the things that you wish you had. I want to focus more on the people I love and the opportunities that are before me. It can get so lost when we live in a negative world but we have the power within ourselves to choose thankfulness. God’s really given us some pretty amazing things in our lives.
Stop Worrying About the Future: I don’t know what you are talking about. I never do this. Says no one ever. Ha! I’m just gonna leave this one right here. I’m just gonna be like, you need to give that whole future thing to the Big Guy upstairs. He’s got it. Preaching to myself.
Realize That You Yourself Are Enough: BEST ONE EVER!!!! YOU ARE ENOUGH!!! Look in the mirror today and say that over and over again. Tell that voice inside your head to go home. You are amazing and you/I need to start loving and accepting ourselves for the incredible rockstars we are. And scene.
Be Kind: Not much more to say with this one. If you want people to be kind to you, you’ve gotta be kind to others. No matter if you agree with them or can’t understand where they are coming from or what they stand for, they are still made in Christ’s image, love them and be kind.
So I may or may not have worked at Ed Debevic’s in downtown Chicago. Ok, I did. After I graduated college, I took my big degree and went to work at a restaurant hahaha. It didn’t last long. I knew eventually I needed to actually get a real job but it was fun, dancing on tables and stuff. My name was Fu Fu. Pronounced Foo Foo but spelled F-u F-u. Do you get my joke? I thought it was funny. I was young. Let’s just chalk it up to that. Although it was totally filled with crazy and music, which is totally me, it was still definitely stepping out of my comfort zone. It was a completely different crowd, different surroundings. I needed to be grounded in who I was and what I stood for. In the end though, I’m so grateful I did it. I’m so grateful I didn’t think twice or live in fear of what I was maybe walking into.
I have a tendency to hibernate in my four walls when crap hits the fan. Can you relate? Like instead of stepping out or reaching out, I go inward. I think we have this weird thing inside of us that we assume no one wants our baggage or we are too much too handle. We don’t want to be a burden OR we believe we can handle it all. Such lies! Sometimes we have to step out of our comfort zone and reach to those that love us in the hard times of life. We are not, I repeat, ARE NOT meant to walk this crazy life alone. God wasn’t like, I plopped all you peeps here on earth and now you just go about your business till I come again. Yea, no. He formed us, created us to build relationships in order to survive the hardships and good times that this life brings. Proverbs 17:17a “A friend loves at all times.” We need to remember that. The people in your life love you right where you are at. Grab onto that. Even when you don’t take a shower for days, or your face is swollen with tears, or you’re so angry you can’t even speak, they still want to sit in the crap with you. Get out of your comfort zone and your four walls and text, call, reach out. We aren’t meant to walk this life alone. We are meant to be together, hand in hand, arm in arm, warrior to warrior. Shields up together my friends.
“Sometimes asking for help is the bravest move you can make. You don’t have to go at it alone.”
I had scars. Deep scars. Scars that would be questioned if I wore short sleeves when I was in the thick of it. I wore long sleeves, obviously, all the time. Pants were needed when the knife hit my leg. I never thought about where I would cut, it just happened and it wasn’t until after the fact that I needed to process through how I’d approach the next day at work or with people. I had to pull my crap together because what would people think. How would I answer all the questions. How do I explain the depth of the pain inside from holding onto the abuse, the secrets, and so much more. People who didn’t even really know me wanted answers but that’s how people are right? They ask but aren’t ready for the real truth. Usually they just want some gossip. It wasn’t until healing really began that I started to really rock my scars. My story was powerful and filled with Jesus. The ‘what will they think’ turned into ‘who cares what they think.’
How many times has that rolled around in our brains. What will they think? What will people say? Because of the assumed answer, how many of your dreams, wants, desires have been crushed or forgotten. Why? Why do we put so much worth in what other people think? It kills our insides and diminishes who we are and how we value our true identity. I am not defined by my scars but I will never EVER regret having each and every one. They tell a story along with each tattoo that sprawls over them. People question my scars, people question my tattoos but in the end, I only care about what Jesus thinks of me. Am I doing things and speaking my story for His glory? Then that’s what matters. My identity is not defined by others, by my scars, by the abuse, or anything else this world says. Friends, we are not defined by others, our mistakes, our failures, our past, our hardships. Instead, we are defined by how we moved out of our storm and into the arms of our Father. Ephesians 2:10a “For we are HIS workmanship (His own master work, a work of art) created in Christ Jesus…..” What people think is not your problem. I know, easier said than done. This is another moment of preaching to myself. We cannot control what others think or feel but we can control how we react and move forward. Will we decide to let it crush what God has called us to do and be or will we stand tall and walk right up that mountain. It will always be our choice. Don’t let anyone else have power over your beautiful soul. You are meant to do amazing things, beautiful scars and all.