Don’t Settle: Pursue God’s Best

We are living in a day where so many Christians have defeated mindsets. We don’t believe God for anything beyond what our eyes can see or our minds can comprehend. So instead of stepping out on faith and reaching for higher ground, we settle for the low hanging fruit and encourage others to do the same.

Whether it be in a relationship, your career or that dream in your heart, if you constantly settle for less, less is all you will ever have.

“It’s not much but at least it’s something” is the biggest statement that keeps us living in defeat. It’s our safety net to default back to when the thought of moving forward seems beyond our reach; but settling for less is not trusting God with your life, it’s allowing fear to control your life. God doesn’t want us to merely exist in this world, he wants us to live – and live to the full. The temporary discomfort that comes from stepping out on faith and stumbling your way through until you take hold of higher ground, pales in comparison to the misery that comes from living in defeat.

God wants more for your life, Jesus declared victory over your life, so all that’s left for you to do is to take hold of your life!

It’s not much but at least it’s something, usually turns out to be nothing at all. If you think about it, we often say that right before we take that low paying job that keeps us living from paycheck to paycheck, or continue on in that unfruitful relationship that keeps us unhappy with low self-esteem. Don’t sell your birthright for a bowl of soup, Esau! Translation…don’t trade in temporary discomfort for a lifetime of misery. Temporary discomfort goes along with the process of pursuing your dreams. It may be tough in the short-term but God will surely bless you in the long-term if you keep the faith and don’t settle for less along the way.


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I pray you found this message to be a blessing and encouraging. Feel free to leave a comment and share with a friend. God Bless!

The Path to Destiny

TThere are many paths that we can take in this life, but the path the leads to destiny is often on the road less traveled. Check out my latest video blog post as I share the revelation I received while walking at the park. God Bless!

 

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Hearing the Voice of God

 

There are two types of Christians: those who seek God’s guidance on everything before they make a move, and those who take bold leaps of faith and pray they grow wings on the way down.  When it comes to making major decisions, I find myself on the latter side of the spectrum.

I’m not one of those Christians who thinks I need a word from God on every detail of my life. Somethings really are up to us. If you want to cut your hair, buy a new car or try a new menu item, by all means, do it. Unless it will have an impact on God’s plan for your life, he really does give us free rein to make normal everyday decisions.  We’re not robots after all.

However, it is important to recognize when God’s hand is working in your situation. It is in those times that being able to recognize his voice over your own (or the voice of the enemy) will help you stay on the right path and avoid unnecessary heartache and distress.

So How Do You Hear From God?

There are many ways that God speaks to his children. Sometimes his answer comes from that inner voice of wisdom that wasn’t there before. I’ve had times where I was completely confused about something and then the answer just came to me plain and clear. It used to blow my mind, but as I matured in Christ I began to recognize those sudden moments of clarity as the leading and guiding of the Holy Spirit. Basically, it means God has stepped in and provided the answer.

Other times, it comes through ministers or from reading the Bible (the Old Testament provides great insight into the mindset of God). Recently, I was dealing with a tough situation that I didn’t quite understand. I had hit a brick wall in my life and no matter how hard I tried I was not able to move it. Of course, this frustrated me to no end. I had no idea what God was doing. I felt like I was having a Job experience (but not to that extreme, thankfully.)

I didn’t know what to do so I got angry, I cried, I gave up and then I got up and sought God again.  Why are you taking me through this, was my constant cry. It took me going to church one night and hearing one line in a sermon that echoed the words God had placed in my spirit all year-long about something I needed to do, but never got around to doing it.

I would like to say that after that night I realized the answer and then went about fixing the problem, but like the true procrastinator that I am, I pondered on it a little further and as a result stayed stuck in my situation just that much longer. It took me hearing the same one line from two other ministers before I finally realized God was speaking to me about my situation. I can truly say that once I went about fixing the problem, that hard place broke and I was able to move forward.

“God is not nearly as concerned about the place as he is about preparing you for the place.”

That was one of those times where I had to seek God for an answer because I didn’t know how to move forward. Then there are those times where I know how to move forward, but I’m not sure if it’s the right thing to do. Times that call for major moves such as a change in career, location, church home, or relationship scare me to death and although after each one I resolve to never do it again, I always find myself faced with the challenge of once again stepping out into the unknown, because as a child of God we ought to always be moving forward.

God has so much in store for our lives that we do him a disservice when we settle for less out of fear of what’s up ahead. God knows all things and we know God…that’s all the assurance I ever need. Man looks at your seemingly irrational decisions, your confused mind, and your bold moves but God looks at the silent meditations of your heart and at exactly what is the driving force behind those decisions.

Some say when you don’t know what to do, do something. Others say that’s a terrible idea. I say, when you don’t know what to do, seek God’s voice continuously for wisdom and guidance, and if you still don’t know what to do…go with what your heart is telling you and rest in the blessed assurance that when you step out on faith, with the right intentions,  Jesus will never let you fail.  He might reroute you if that was not the way you should go, but he will also give you the wisdom needed to get back on track.

The Why’s of Life

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Every now and then events happen in life that leave us dumbfounded. An unexpected loss of a loved one, a failed business venture or a situation that didn’t quite work out in our favor will leave us questioning God; but I’ve come to find that seemingly good things in foresight end up being not so great in hindsight, because if it were the best thing for you…why wouldn’t God want you to have it? In spite of how it may seem, God does not take pleasure in our pain. He does, however, take pleasure in our spiritual growth and maturity. And i
f we look closely at our lives some of our most pressing questions can be answered by 3 simple words of faith…trust in God.  

Heartache and Pain…Why?

Situations that happen in the lives of the people around us, although it may affect us, isn’t necessarily something that God is doing to us. The loss of a loved one can be devastating, and if you don’t perceive it correctly you can become bitter and blame God for taking away the one person you felt you needed in this life, but God doesn’t look at death the way we do. He knows that the only person we truly need is Jesus, and no matter who comes and goes he will forever remain. Jesus is the provision for our pain. As the scripture says, weeping may endure for a night but joy comes in the morning…if you allow it. If you don’t settle into bitterness and blame God for taking someone through the natural process of life and death and into life everlasting, you will find joy again.

It didn’t work out in my favor…Why?

There was a time where I was trusting God to bring me out of a pressing place, and when he didn’t do it, I began to question the purpose of prayer. I knew that God’s will for my life was far greater than my plan and that no amount of begging and pleading was going to change that, but in the midst of it all…God changed me. The miracles that he performed in my life during that time left me speechless and in awe of who he really is. Now when it comes to hard times, I’d rather suffer a little while longer just to see the hand of God move in my life than to take the easy road and enjoy temporary happiness that could never be sustained without him; it takes going through a pressing place to bring forth that level of maturity.

“You did not choose Me but I chose you, and appointed you that you would go and bear fruit, and that your fruit would remain…” –John 15:16

Why me…because you are chosen for the life you lead.

Why not me…because God has so much more in store.

Why this battle…because you are more than a conqueror.

Why not move this mountain…because then you will never know how high you can climb.

In the end, this life is temporary but God’s plan is eternal. It’s easy to throw yourself a pity party, hang out with your fears, and blame him for everything that is not going right in your life when the truth of the matter is, there are things in this life we won’t always understand. It’s one of the mysteries of God’s plan that will be revealed to us on that great day of glory, but while we are on this earth we have a purpose to fulfill, and God knows just what it takes to get us from one level to the next. Sometimes it takes a push and other times it takes a pull, but it’s all meant to get us to arrive on time at our divine destination.

So the next time you are tempted to settle into your sorrows and complain, try turning your y’s into u’s and watch God transform your life in unimaginable ways. Thank U Jesus for your never-ending love, thank U for your saving grace, and thank U for bringing me to it so that you can show yourself more than capable of seeing me through it!

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Life’s Disappointments

Recently I posted a quote that stated: “There’s no need to beg and plead with God, he wants to bless you. Lay that problem at his feet and walk in the confidence of knowing that he is working it out on your behalf.” Soon after, I found myself sitting at my desk silently whispering “please God please” about something I was waiting for him to do in my life, and I just had to stop and laugh. Needless to say, it’s often easier to give advice than to follow your own – kind of the do as I say and not as I do syndrome – but the truth of the matter is: In this life, your plans won’t always coincide with God’s will and when this happens feelings of disappointment, frustration and dare I say…anger are soon to follow.

Anger because God had the power to work that thing out in your favor, and didn’t. Frustration because once again you stepped out on faith and fell flat on our face; and disappointment because the scripture says you can do all things through Christ who strengthens you, yet you are left feeling weak and defeated.

Many are the plans in a person’s heart, but it is the LORD’s purpose that prevails.–Proverbs 19:21

It’s a terrible feeling to set your sights on something, go after it with all you got, and have it not work out the way you hoped. Believe me, I have been down that road a time or three. I’ve had job interviews where I fasted and prayed, went to the interview with my stomach growling from hunger…and still didn’t get the job. But somewhere during the process I felt in my spirit that it was not the right job for me, and I proceeded anyway because the alternative, staying where I was, seemed far worse.

Fortunately for us, our heavenly father doesn’t operate in the land of good enough, and he won’t give you every little desire that sweeps across your heart. You can beg and plead with him in prayer but he already knows if that request is the best thing for you, or if it will lead to a dead-end road. Desperate prayers are often the product of fear or impatience. Fear of being trapped in a bad situation, or desperation to get out. Either way, God holds the map and the key, once the lessons have been learned and the purpose has been served, then and only then will he bring you out.

The LORD will guide you continually, giving you water when you are dry and restoring your strength. – Isaiah 58:11

Not everyone is guided by his strong hand, but if you have a calling on your life to be more and do more, then expect him to keep a tight rein on your path. It’s the dessert experiences, or as I call them, the Karate Kid “wax on wax off” moments of life that teaches us all those invaluable lessons we wouldn’t have learned otherwise. It has been in the most trying times of my life that I have grown and matured the most.

Life’s Disappointments often lead way to God’s Divine Appointment

Life is about transformation…And yes, it comes with its own set of disappointments and setbacks, heartaches and headaches but rest assured, whenever God takes you through a process not only will he restore you in the end, but he will transform your mind until the desires of your heart begin to match the desires of his. Then there will be less wrong turns and more right decisions; less begging and pleading in prayer and more seeking and thanking, because spiritual maturity takes place at the point where you can trade in your will for his…knowing that his will is best.

Have faith in the process!

 

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God’s Positioning System

It’s true…sometimes your GPS gets it wrong. Whether due to an outdated map or the recent relocation of a business, I’ve had many times where I’ve heard that small voice echo: arriving at destination on the right – only to find that my destination was nowhere in sight, and what then? There’s a certain degree of disorientation that comes from suddenly realizing you have been headed in the wrong direction, or thinking you have reached the end of your journey only to find you have several more miles to go.

The same holds true on the road of life. We get a dream in our heart that we know is going to come to pass. We ponder on it, we pray about it, but when we finally decide to boldly go forth in that direction…it turns out to be the wrong turn. This usually leads to feelings of disappointment and despair because when we lose our way, we think God has lost our way, but this is not true.

“When you go through deep waters, I will be with you. When you go through rivers of difficulty, you will not drown. When you walk through the fire of oppression, you will not be burned up; the flames will not consume you. For I am the LORD, your God…”-Isaiah 43:2

Uncertain paths are a part of life. Roads we think will lead us to our destiny often turn out to be dead ends. The people we counted on to accompany us on our journey turn back and leave, and suddenly we find ourselves traveling alone-but unlike the GPS in your car that offers no further guidance after the point of arrival, God steps in and through the guidance of the Holy Spirit, redirects our lives like only He can.

“I will say of the LORD, He is my refuge and my fortress: my God; in him will I trust” – Psalm 91:2

Turning back from the path you had originally planned is not always easy. Sometimes it can be downright painful, but God in his infinite wisdom will allow you to shed a few tears for a moment in order to save you heartache for a lifetime. You have to trust that he will lead you out of the darkness and into his marvelous light!

Feeling Lost in Your Current Direction?

Our Heavenly Father is the ultimate Global Positioning System – No matter where you are on the globe, or what you may be dealing with, God is more than able to get your life back on track – because he not only sees us but he sees those things inside of us that even we have yet to realize; and when you allow him, he will guide your life in such a way that eventually you too will hear that small voice on the inside say…Arriving at divine destination on the right. Keep the Faith!

 

 

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Opportunities – Video Blog by Inspirational Speaker Sabrena Jay

Life is full of opportunities, yet so many times we let them pass us by. View my latest video blog and be inspired to take hold of every opportunity God has in store for you!

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Do You Have Mountain Moving Faith?

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Can your faith move a mountain, or just topple a hill? Will it stand up to the attacks of the enemy, or tuck its tail and hide?

A few years ago, I found myself in a very tight spot. After having stepped out on faith and walked away from an unbearable situation, I had to trust God for every next step. Although the road was rough and the path uncertain, I rested in the peace of knowing that Jesus was right there with me.  I felt his presence during my most trying times.  It was an overwhelming sense of peace in the midst of it all. When there seemed to be no way out, something on the inside kept reassuring me that God was working it out.

That is what it means to have mountain moving faith; to look at the impossible situation that is standing up in your life, and trust that God is more than able to move it on your behalf. Although that was one of the most trying times of my life, it had the biggest impact on my walk as a Christian. The miracles he performed time after time has proved to me that if I just place my trust in Him, and follow the leading of the Holy Spirit, he will never leave me to deal with this thing called life alone. My faith was perfected in the hard times so that I will forever remain faithful in the good.

Sometimes we trust Jesus enough to get out of the boat, but fail to keep our eyes on him while walking on the water.

The book of Deuteronomy tells the story of the people of Israel and how they refused to trust God to conqueror the giants that stood in the way of getting into the promise land. They complained that he brought them out of Egypt only to let them die in the end. After 40 years of seeing God perform miracle after miracle, they still didn’t have faith enough to believe that he was more than able to see them through…How many times in life have we done this? We say we are walking by faith while worrying every step of the way; but Jesus wants you to rest in the peace of him, and walk with your head held high.

 “Oh ye of little faith, why are you so afraid?” Then he got up and rebuked the winds and the waves, and it was completely calm. – Matthew 8:26

Having mountain moving faith means pressing forward when everything in you wants to turn back. It’s truly understanding that trouble don’t last always, so instead of crying and complaining about your problem, you look for the lesson it was intended to teach.

If we put things in proper prospective than we will begin to realize that physical storms don’t come to stay and neither does the storms of life. Instead, they water us with God’s presence; they are the winds that blow us in the direction of his will, or the road blocks that stops us in our tracks to bring us back into right standing with Him.  This is why staying connected to the word is a must as a Christian; it gives us reassurance that God is in control. No matter how many times he punished the children of Israel for their disobedience he always gave them a promise of restoration. God never takes us through anything without restoring us in the end … but you have to trust him through the process.

On the road of life, don’t allow fear to be your companion. Give it the boot, and take faith along for the ride!

 

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Do You Have a Heart of Compassion?

The other day, on my way to the store I noticed a homeless man sitting on the sidewalk. Normally I wouldn’t have paid much attention to him, but this day was different. There was something about the way he sat there – staring at the ground – that grab my heart and moved me in a special way.  When I walked past, he didn’t bother to look up; he just sat there deep in thought with his gaze fixed on the ground. As I entered the store a wave of thoughts went through my mind: What was his story? What was he thinking about, and how did he end up here? Did he have any family; was there anyone that knew him; anyone that truly cared?

When I came out of the store I got back into my car but something wouldn’t allow me to leave. I sat for a while and watched as the wind blew through his hair. I didn’t know if I should go over and offer him money or give him a word of encouragement. All I could really think to do in that moment was pray, so I did:

“God, there is nothing too hard for you. Even at this point in his life you are still able to show up and turn it around for his good. Please show him that you still care.”

While I was praying, a man walked over and offered him some money, but he shook his head no. My heart sank. Not because he didn’t take the money, but because I know what it feels like to be at the point of giving up. To feel so lost and alone that nothing anyone said or did could help.

 “God fill his heart with a peace that surpasses all understanding,” was my silent prayer.

Seconds later, a lady came out of the store and offered him money too. Again, he turned it down. She started off but turned back and offered him her soda – still no deal. She said a few words and walked away with her head down.

Soon after that an elderly lady walked up and gave it another shot…Suddenly I begin to realize that God WAS there! Right in the midst of it all, he was using each one of us to show this lowly guy that he indeed still cared. The homeless guy didn’t know that I was a few feet away interceding on his behalf, but God did.

“Never will I leave you. Never will I forsake you.” – Hebrew 13:5

How many times in life do we find ourselves in this type of situation, where we get so caught up in the noise of the storm that we fail to recognize the movement of God in the rain? But water brings forth growth…if you allow it.

That day I was inspired to not only keep lifted in prayer a person whom I have walked past many times but never really seen, but to never lose the heart of compassion that Jesus displayed. This guy is no different from the lame man at the pool of Bethesda, the woman with the issue of blood, or any one of us who once was lost and now has been found by God’s love.

“A new commandment I give you: Love one another. Just as I have loved you, you must love one another.” – John 13:34

As Christians, let’s be mindful not to just recite the words: what would Jesus do, but actually go out and do what Jesus did. Show loving kindness to those who need it the most, and sow a seed that will take root and spring forth in due season.

Faith-isms

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“Without faith it is impossible to please God, because anyone who comes to him must believe that he exists and that he rewards those who earnestly seek him.” – Hebrews 11:6

What is Faith?

Faith is believing that God can in spite of the voice in your head that tells you he can’t.

Faith is knowing God has your best interest at heart, even when it hurts your heart.

Faith is the peace that surpasses all understanding.

Faith is pressing forward when everything in you wants to turn back.

Faith is the truly understanding that greater is the ending of a thing than its beginning.

Faith is the overwhelming sense of peace in the midst of a trial.

Faith doesn’t just see the present, but have vision for the future.

Faith silences the voice of doubt.

Faith dispels fear.

Faith sees the light at the end of the tunnel.

Faith is the light at the end of the tunnel.

Faith moves mountains

Because Faith…moves God.

Do you have any Faith-isms you would like to add to the list?  This blog is an open forum for discussion. Be sure to signup to receive notifications of responses and new posts.

It is my sincere prayer that you discover the faith that makes you whole!

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