#Truth

I am Submitted to God | Day 48 September 10 2015, 0 Comments

In case you missed the announcement about this NEW SERIES | #TruthAboutWhoYouAre take a moment to check out this blog post

#TruthAboutWhoYouAre

This is Day 48 of 48 of the #TruthAboutWhoYouAre series. Thank you so much for joining in on this journey with me. I hope you are inspired over this 7 week series.


Today is bittersweet! It's the last day of this series so I am excited to share my thoughts with you. On the other hand, I have loved this series so much that I don't want it to end. In today's post I am sharing a portion of my testimony along with the scripture. It's about a time when I felt near hopeless and God turned my life around and reminded me that I had a purpose. 

I am submitted to God, and the devil flees from me because I resist him in the Name of Jesus - James 4:7

You are here for a purpose. Did you know that? You are on this earth, in your job, married to that person, have those kids, live in that neighborhood for a purpose. Take a look at Jeremiah 29:11 "For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future." If things in your world are looking bleak, be encouraged knowing that God is able to turn things around for you. 

Growing up I fully believed that God had a special purpose for my life. As I began to get older I faced some pretty tough situations. Instead of trusting that God would take care of me, I was consumed by my struggles. No matter how much I wanted to do what's right I struggled and made poor choices. I found myself in a dark place that I could not escape from on my own. Alone, broken, confused, and hurt I curled up in a ball of defeat. I felt hopeless - but something deep down told me to keep going. I continued to struggle with the person I had become until one day I cried out to God and told Him, "I give up on doing this alone, I need you now more than I ever have!" God heard my cry for help and within a month began to transform my life in a way I never could have imagined. Life is still challenging, don't get me wrong, but living a life on purpose is worth it. 

Once you have decided to surrender your life to Christ and live out your God given purpose it is almost guaranteed that there will be opposition. Because much like there is a God that is for you there is also an enemy who would like nothing more than to discourage and distract you from living out your God given potential. In a recent message at church, my pastor shared this quote, "There is no winning without warfare; there is no opportunity without opposition; there is no victory without vigilance. For when ever the people of God say, 'Let us arise and build,' Satan says, 'Let me arise and oppose.'"

What this means for us is that if we choose the path of serving God and living a life of purpose we will experience opposition from the enemy. The Bible says in John 10:10, "The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy. I came that they may have life and have it abundantly." The enemy wants to get us to the point that our heads are hanging low and all we can see are our current struggles so that we miss out on the bigger picture. We can be encourage through James 4:7, Submit yourselves therefore to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you.

Are you in a season right now where all you can see is your current struggles? Are you having a hard time seeing up ahead and trusting that God has good plans in store for you? Don't give up. Instead of surrendering to your fear, choose to submit and surrender to God. You have a purpose and it's worth fighting through the opposition. Any thought that you have about yourself that tears you down is not from God. Take a moment to read through the other #TruthAboutWhoYouAre posts to learn about what God thinks of you. 

Be sure to download this printable while it's free! 

The scriptures used for this series came from Joyce Meyers download, “Who God Made You To Be”


Christ Lives in Me | Day 47 September 08 2015, 0 Comments

In case you missed the announcement about this NEW SERIES | #TruthAboutWhoYouAre take a moment to check out this blog post

#TruthAboutWhoYouAre

This is Day 47 of 48 of the #TruthAboutWhoYouAre series. Thank you so much for joining in on this journey with me. I hope you are inspired over this 7 week series.

Melissa Miller is a grateful wife and mother of three and the women's pastor at Canvas Church in San Diego, California. Melissa's passion is to help women move from the pain in their past to the purpose in their future. Follow along on her journey on her blog: Simple Scripture and Instagram: @MelissaSueMiller

“I’m just trying to find myself.”

I said those words many times during my early college years. For the first couple years, I thought finding myself consisted of reading self-help books, deciding on a major and listening to Coldplay while journaling. There were some students who seemed decided and resolved, they knew who they were and what they stood for. Those people intimidated me, I knew it wouldn’t take them long to see me for the lost girl that I was. No matter which veneer I put on, under the surface, I was searching for my identity and drowning in my attempts.

I searched in magazines like Cosmopolitan, who told me I need to play more games in my relationships in order to have the upper hand. Professors told me changing majors would help. Friends told me my arms weren’t fat but I could lose weight in other places.

School was the answer, changing boyfriends was the answer, working out more was the answer, a new beauty product was the answer, the next frat party was the answer, better clothes were the answer...I felt frantic and terminal with every crumb of unsatisfying advice.

There was one confident and resolved young man who didn’t make me feel inferior. Brandon made me feel safe and accepted. It turns out he was the FCA (Fellowship of Christian Athletes) President (and my future husband). I didn’t know sending him an email would change the course of my life.

I asked Brandon in the email if I could meet with him and ask him questions about his faith. He invited me to FCA that Thursday night, and even though I thought spotlights would shine on me and announce that I was a sinner, I agreed to attend. Brandon spoke about Peter walking on the water and said, “Every time we take our eyes off of Jesus we will find ourselves sinking.”

I knew I was sinking, drowning even. I raised my hand and accepted Christ into my life, even though I didn’t yet understand the extent of that decision. Brandon’s boldness and joy-filled life were what I desired and if he gave credit to Jesus for that, then Jesus was what I wanted.

The weeks and months after my decision, I noticed my dorm room was full of remnants of the old searching girl; checklists of things I needed to change about my appearance, the self-help books full of vague ideas and magazines that wanted me to put on an act rather than be myself. The purging process began, and soon my trash can was full of that trash advice.

I thought about Brandon’s sermon and instead of drowning the in the sea of empty advice I chose to focus on Jesus. I’ll never forget opening the Bible and reading Jesus’ words in Luke 9. I was sitting on my bed, completely overwhelmed.

23 And he said to all, “If anyone would come after me, let him deny himself and take up his cross daily and follow me. 24 For whoever would save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life for my sake will save it. 25 For what does it profit a man if he gains the whole world and loses or forfeits himself?

I began worshipping God with raised hands. My search for “finding myself” was over, it was in losing myself in Christ that I found an identity and purpose that was as certain as my fingerprint.

“I have been crucified with Christ. It is no longer I who live, but Christ who lives in me.” Galatians 2:20

I didn’t need Cosmopolitan magazine to tell me how to find myself. I didn’t need self-help books to tell me how to find myself. I didn’t need to go to the gym more or play relational games to find myself. In order to find myself I needed to be crucified with Christ, to pick up my cross and follow Him. Doing things my way only led to confusion, Christ living in me was the only thing that was needed. It’s that simple.

Don’t Settle,

Melissa Miller

It is not I who live, but Christ lives in me - Galatians 2:20 

Be sure to download this printable while it's free! 

 

The scriptures used for this series came from Joyce Meyers download, “Who God Made You To Be”


Power, Love, and a Sound Mind | Day 46 August 28 2015, 0 Comments

In case you missed the announcement about this NEW SERIES | #TruthAboutWhoYouAre take a moment to check out this blog post

#TruthAboutWhoYouAre

This is Day 46 of 48 of the #TruthAboutWhoYouAre series. Thank you so much for joining in on this journey with me. I hope you are inspired over this 7 week series.  

Today's post is written by one of my very dear friends who I am so incredibly grateful for. "I love things I can see & believe in things I can't. My calling is to serve, my joy in life is creating and my passion is the marriage of the two graphics & cakes" - Crystal Sadler  (And did I mention she has the best dogFollow her along on her journey on Instagram: @sadlerck 

 

For God has not given us a spirit of fear; but of power, love, and a sound mind - 2 Timothy 1:7

So often this scripture is quoted when someone is hit with a "bad" medical diagnosis 
Or going through a difficult season in life.  I find this truth to be so rich that it should be a daily reminder and encouragement, at least for me. I'm not always going through something "big" or "deep" some days I'm just going through "life"! I need to be reminded while I'm serving at church,working 9-5, cleaning the house, running errands and everything else, we as woman balance, that God has not left me to go at it alone.  He has given me the Holy Spirit to accomplish all that is laid out before me. 
 
Let's dissect this verse piece for piece
- Who gives? God gives and we know our Father only gives good gifts.
-What has he not given us? A spirit of fear
This is my favorite part to any verse in all its truth "BUT"
-but by definition: used to indicate the impossibility of anything other than what is being stated.
 
-The same spirit gives us power, that same power that raised Christ from the dead and inhabits us as believers. We are weak, but He is strong in us, through the spirit He gives us resurrection power! I don't know about you but if that life raising power is in me, I'm pretty sure we can do All things. 
-He gives us love. What is the truest example of love? Christ would lay down his life for you and I, even on our ugliest least deserving days. He set a perfect example for us on how to love and the spirit God gave us is to help us love like Him.
-Finally a sound mind, some translations say peace or self disipline, which means more to me somedays than anything. In my busy schedule I have moments I feel like I may just loose my mind. I have less patience for those closest to me and feel stretched too thin on top of all that I have battled health issues for the past eight years,
but it is the Holy Spirit in me and nothing else that gives me internal stillness and a peace that I can't even explain. A peace that passes all understanding. 
 
Take hold of this truth daily, walk out your "life" whatever it looks like right now, "big" or small mountains to climb, knowing what your Heavenly Father has given you. He has equip you with all you need. You are courageous and do not have a spirit of fear! 

 

Be sure to download this printable while it's free! 

 

The scriptures used for this series came from Joyce Meyers download, “Who God Made You To Be”

Be sure to download this printable while it's free!


I Press On | Day 45 August 25 2015, 0 Comments

This is Day 40 of 48 of the #TruthAboutWhoYouAre series. Thank you so much for joining in on this journey with me. I hope you are inspired over this 7 week series.

Today’s post is written by someone I have known since I was a little girl and absolutely love! She has helped me successfully navigate through many of life's challenges. Her name is Meghan Robinson  Her and her husband @careyrobinsonoc are my pastors at @theocmovement. She's one of the most passionate people I know and I am so excited to share her thoughts on today's verse. Follow along in her journey and inspiring posts via Instagram: @divapastor 

 

I press on toward the goal to win the prize to which God in Christ Jesus is calling us upward. - Philippians 3:14

 

A few years ago a handful of leaders in our church decided to participate in the Camp Pendleton Mud Run. I had never done a "run" before and I'm not a particular fan of mud....but I was persuaded to join in because I didn't want to miss out on this adventure with a handful of my closest friends! It couldn't be that bad....right? Wrong!!!!

 

This 5K took place on the Camp Pendleton training ground and began with us being doused by a fire engine hose and continued through dirt trails, mud pits, up incredibly steep hills, over obstacle courses, under army nets (in an army crawl), through 2 mud pools and finally to the finish line. It was DISGUSTING! It was hard! It was exhausting! But, oh was it worth it!!!! The feeling of accomplishment at the end of that race, linking arms and crossing the finish line with my good friends and the shower that followed was the BEST reward ever!!!

 

Our life as a Christian is like that 5K (x1000) We have been put here on this earth with a purpose, for such a time as this! The goal is not to make it to the finish line avoiding all obstacles and staying as clean as possible, coming in as a lone ranger. No...the goal is to grab everyone we know and invite them into this amazing race called life! To navigate the obstacles together, encouraging and cheering one another on! We may get messy along the way. But the goal is to finish the race, clinging to faith and bringing as many people with us across that finish line as we possibly can! That when we make it to heaven, Jesus will say "Well done good and faithful servant!"

 

We've been given a mission by Jesus to "go into all the world and make disciples!" The race that has been set before us will have it's share of challenges, adventure and excitement! Let's run this race with endurance (not giving up) bringing everyone we can with us and then we will party together one day in heaven with the King of Kings and Lord of Lords! The reward is rich....and it is worth it

xoxo

Meghan

Be sure to download this printable while it's free! 

 

Photo Cred: Jordan Upton

 The scriptures used for this series came from Joyce Meyers download, “Who God Made You To Be"


I am Strengthened | Day 44 August 24 2015, 0 Comments

In case you missed the announcement about this NEW SERIES | #TruthAboutWhoYouAre take a moment to check out this blog post

#TruthAboutWhoYouAre

This is Day 44 of 48 of the #TruthAboutWhoYouAre series. Thank you so much for joining in on this journey with me. I hope you are inspired over this 7 week series.

I am happy to introduce my friend Melanie Greenwood. We were introduced to one another a few years ago but as of lately I have had the opportunity to get to know her more. She is a beautiful woman inside and out and I am beyond inspired by her. She is a very talented designer and has some amazing pieces for sale in her shop. I hope you take a moment to check it out! Follow along on her journey via Instagram: @visioncity I hope you are encouraged today by what she has to say. 

I am strengthened with all might according to His glorious power - Colossians 1:11

Hello Everyone! My name is Melanie and I am the founder and designer at Vision City Art Prints (visioncity.biz) I’m excited to share on the topic of Strength because there has never been a time in my life where I needed it more then I do now. As a new mom and an entrepreneur running my own art print business, I definitely feel like I can be running on empty. Sleepless nights, trade shows, creating art and doing administrative work, all can really pull on you. Like I’m giving even more energy then I actually have left. The more I learn and grow with God the more I realize that He has not designed me to run on empty. Or ever to run on partial power.
He is always there with me offering me a fresh dose of strength for each day. I find myself praying as I go about my day for His strength, even in the little things. And you know what happens? I suddenly feel like I can push further. I literally get a shot of energy as if out of nowhere and I can handle the chaos. Strength is not just a physical thing, but emotional, mental and spiritual. He wants to strengthen us from the inside out. Pour a fresh dose of power into us, so that we are not just getting by but growing to a new capacity. I also believe that words hold such power. So as you read this, I encourage you to read this scripture out loud "I am strengthened with all might according to His glorious power”. (Colossians 1:11) Amen.

Be sure to download this printable while it's free! 

The scriptures used for this series came from Joyce Meyers download, “Who God Made You To Be”

Photo Cred: Jordan Upton 


I am Greatly Loved | Day 43 August 22 2015, 0 Comments

In case you missed the announcement about this NEW SERIES | #TruthAboutWhoYouAre take a moment to check out this blog post

#TruthAboutWhoYouAre

This is Day 43 of 48 of the #TruthAboutWhoYouAre series. Thank you so much for joining in on this journey with me. I hope you are inspired over this 7 week series.

Born in central California with God’s urging DeAnna moved down to Orange County to pursue a career in fashion. It was also where she met her husband Kenton. DeAnna works for a high end Swimwear line and she also helps her husband with their men’s jewelry company called Kenton Michael.  Follow along DeAnna's journey on Instagram: @DeAnna_M_Dunn and take a look at her husband's jewelry line: @Kenton_Michael

 

I wear love on my neck. I wear it because it has been a driving force in my life. Whether it lead me down paths of heartbreak or success I have always been an advocate of love. It took me many years to have even a grasp of what real love looks like. Real love isn't a fairy tale! Although I still do very much believe in fairy tales but I now know what LOVE means. It's Jesus. It five letters but powerful. It's Jesus and what he did for me, well for everyone. It's a perfect person taking on my ugliness, failures, my sinful nature and washing me clean of it all. Regardless of if I deserve it or not. His love is not contingent on if I like his football team, dress how it likes or say just the right thing. It such a freeing thing when you know how much God loves you! How he fought for us, always has opens arms, and will be with us forever and ever. This is love. The way my father loves me is better then any fairytale because it's real and it's truth.

 

DeAnna

 

 

 Dunn

Be sure to download this printable while it's free! 

The scriptures used for this series came from Joyce Meyers download, “Who God Made You To Be”

Photo Cred: Jordan Upton 


I am Raised up with Christ | Day 42 August 21 2015, 0 Comments

In case you missed the announcement about this NEW SERIES | #TruthAboutWhoYouAre take a moment to check out this blog post

#TruthAboutWhoYouAre

This is Day 42 of 48 of the #TruthAboutWhoYouAre series. Thank you so much for joining in on this journey with me. I hope you are inspired over this 7 week series.

I would like to introduce to you my friend Rosanna Delurgio. She is competitive swimmer turned writer, business and nutrition coach through Advocare, and young adults leader at her church C3. Follow her journey at competingwithpurpose.com, Facebook: Competing With Purpose, and Instagram: @competingwithpurpose 

I am raised up with Christ and seated in heavenly places. - Eph 2:6, Col 2:12
Sin literally means to miss the mark.  Everyone of us has sinned, so we all have fallen short of God's intent for us.  That idea can be depressing in light of the extravagant love and provision Jesus made for us through His life and death.  Now that we walk in perfect communion with God through the Holy Spirit reminding ourselves of our position in the kingdom of heaven is one of the best ways to bolster up your prayer life. We do not pray for position, but from a position of strength and power.  How does this truth change your language during prayer?  Personally when I realized where I was praying from I stopped the pleading prayers.  Instead I shifted my prayers to declaration of God's provision in my situation.  I get to call down heaven to earth.  We all do.  As believers we are His ambassadors here on earth. That means we don't have to ask for what has already been given, but we get to enforce it. Shift your boldness and fortify your strength when you pray understanding that you pray from a position in heaven.  
Be sure to download this printable while it's free! 

The scriptures used for this series came from Joyce Meyers download, “Who God Made You To Be”

 


I am Healed by the Stripes of Jesus | Day 41 August 19 2015, 0 Comments

In case you missed the announcement about this NEW SERIES | #TruthAboutWhoYouAre take a moment to check out this blog post

#TruthAboutWhoYouAre

This is Day 41 of 48 of the #TruthAboutWhoYouAre series. Thank you so much for joining in on this journey with me. I hope you are inspired over this 7 week series.


Today's post is written by one of my friends, Jordan Upton. Wife, stay at home mom to two kids. Mom by day, crafter by night! Love of coffee & flea markets! She's also the one that has helped me photograph some recent Crafted By prints and some that I haven't shared yet!

I am healed by the stripes of Jesus - Isaiah 53:5; 1 Peter 2:24

I was 14. I went to the doctor for what I thought was strep throat... I remember expecting to get a quick throat swab, prescription and to be out of there. That one visit to the doctor shook me and my faith to the core. 
Within minutes of seeing the doctor I could tell that the appointment wasn't going to be as easy as I expected. There were multiple questions and just a weird feeling in the room. He said that I didn't have strep and he had a pretty good idea what was wrong with me but wanted me to go get some blood work done and then we could talk again. I went straight from the doctor to the hospital lab to get my blood drawn, I remember being nervous about the needles and hoping I'd never have to do that again. Little did I know that would be the first of many blood draws. That week was a blur of blood tests, doctors, my parents shuffling me around and trying to protect me from the scary truth... I had cancer.
The weeks to come we prayed and believed that God could and would heal my body. The tests came back positive for Leukemia. I remember the doctor saying that they needed to test my bone marrow to see what the next steps would be. He explained that my immune system was low and I was susceptible to getting very sick from something as simple as a cough. The following week was our annual fall retreat and I had already planned on going but my parents were adamant that I couldn't attend. I cried, yelled, and begged them to let me go! I promised I wouldn't get sick I promised them that I could handle it & that what I really needed was to be in God's presence at that fall retreat! After a few days they reluctantly let me go. I remember the 2nd night I was there, during worship they had an altar call for people who needed healing. I walked to the left side of the stage and just worshiped raising my hands in the air and someone laid their hands on me and began praying and believing for healing through my body. In that moment I felt God near, I heard him vividly, and felt such peace. 
Once we were home from the retreat I went to my appointment for the bone marrow test and begged my doctor to test my blood first, he of course thought I was crazy but I knew that something had shifted. When those blood results came back they were clear, completely negative, not a single sign of cancer! God had healed my body! 
I knew He could heal me but there were times of doubt and fear but my family continued to remind me that the word says Isaiah 53:5 I am healed by the stripes of Jesus! I am so thankful for His constant love and peace throughout all areas of my life! 
If you are needing healing in an area of your life be encouraged and know that he can heal you! 
He is ready & able to heal not only your body but your heart and mind and any area that you may need the healing that only He can bring! He is our father and he wants to protect and walk with you through any of your struggles. Press into him and find rest! 
Jordan Upton

Be sure to download this printable while it's free! 

The scriptures used for this series came from Joyce Meyers download, “Who God Made You To Be”

As I added this post to the blog the song "Heaven and Earth" by Hillsong Worship flooded my mind. Enjoy! xoxo Kristen

By His stripes we are healed
By His death we can live
In Jesus name, in Jesus name
All oppression will cease
Every captive released
In Jesus name, in Jesus name 


I am called of God to be the voice of His praise | Day 40 August 18 2015, 0 Comments

This is Day 40 of 48 of the #TruthAboutWhoYouAre series. Thank you so much for joining in on this journey with me. I hope you are inspired over this 7 week series.

Today’s post is written by someone I have known since I was a little girl and absolutely love! She has helped me successfully navigate through many of life's challenges. Her name is Meghan Robinson  Her and her husband @careyrobinsonoc are my pastors at @theocmovement. She's one of the most passionate people I know and I am so excited to share her thoughts on today's verse. Follow along in her journey and inspiring posts via Instagram: @divapastor 

I am called of God to be the voice of His praise - Psalm 66:8; 2 Timothy 1:9

I love to sing and I sing loud! What I'm not saying is that I sing well! I've often been told by our worship team at church that they can here me singing (over their speakers!) Yikes! I don't have an amazing voice, it's ok....but it is really your perpetual choir girl sound, not Adele or Taylor Swift awesomeness!  

Regardless, I continue to sing and loudly! I love worship because it completely takes my eyes off of myself and my current circumstances and fixes them on Jesus, the author and giver of life. Songs of worship declare God's faithfulness, love and goodness. They remind me that God is bigger than anything I might be facing and capable of seeing me through.

Pslam 66:8 declares "Bless our God, O peoples; let the sound of his praise be heard."

Psalm 145:4 (MSG) say's  "Generation after generation stands in awe of your work; each one tells stories of your mighty acts."

We are called to be a voice of God's praise. What does that mean? We have a responsibility to tell stories or sing songs of "his mighty acts!" Why? It increases the faith of those who hear it and it increases our personal faith as well. When we reflect on God's nature, His goodness, His faithfulness in our past....it increases our expectancy for what He will do with our future.

Maybe you find yourself in a challenging situation today. Can I encourage you? If you will trust God to take your story and turn it into something beautiful....He will use it to show His goodness and faithfulness. Our story is never just about what God is doing in us. It is about what He wants to do in us and through us! When we open our mouth to share our story and give Him praise, we find purpose in the pain!

Today, take a moment to reflect on what God has done in your life. If you are having a challenging time finding anything good....(TAKE A DEEP BREATH)..... He gave you that! Be thankful! :) You are still living and breathing because He is with you! He has great plans for you and will accomplish His purpose in you and through you! It is time to sing His praise. Re-focus your attention on who God is and what He is capable of doing in your life. Then sing it, shout it, tell everyone about it! We are called to be a voice of His praise!

xoxo

Meghan

Be sure to download this printable while it's free! 

 

Photo Cred: Jordan Upton

 The scriptures used for this series came from Joyce Meyers download, “Who God Made You To Be"


I am Firmly Rooted | Day 39 August 17 2015, 0 Comments

In case you missed the announcement about this NEW SERIES | #TruthAboutWhoYouAre take a moment to check out this blog post

#TruthAboutWhoYouAre

This is Day 39 of 48 of the #TruthAboutWhoYouAre series. Thank you so much for joining in on this journey with me. I hope you are inspired over this 7 week series.

Today's post is written by my beautiful mom. She's an amazing woman - has been married for over 40 years to my dad. I am so thankful for the wisdom she has to offer and hope this touches your life! Follow her along in her journey on Instagram: @janicekmoore

 

I am firmly rooted, built up, established in my faith and overflowing with gratitude. - Colossians 2:7

This scripture although it is only comprised of a small number of words speaks volumes to me. The depth of what is spoken resonates in my heart. Each time I read this scripture it shouts to every part of my being. It brings me comfort, but at the same time it makes me so very uncomfortable because it reminds me that I am not in control. It takes a relationship or a friendship with the Savior to become closer to Him which leads to becoming established in your faith. It’s about trusting God when we cannot see the outcome.

One of the most difficult realizations in my Christian walk was the fact that I am not and could not be in control of my life. I am responsible for my actions and reactions, but to “drive the bus” is not what I am called to do. I accepted Christ as my savior while in grade school, but I didn’t give up control until much later in life. Instead of deeply rooting myself in a relationship with Jesus, trusting when I couldn’t see the outcome and being full of thankfulness whether the times were good or not so good, I would look for ways to manipulate situations for a positive outcome. This didn’t produce growth or cause those roots of faith to go deep and become established, it fed the selfish desire to always be in control.

There have been countless times when I have been completely out of control of my circumstances then God would bring me right to the edge of the water similar to when He gave instructions to Joshua in Joshua 3:12-13. “12 Now choose twelve men from the tribes of Israel, one from each tribe.13 The priests will carry the Ark of the lord, the Lord of all the earth. As soon as their feet touch the water, the flow of water will be cut off upstream, and the river will stand up like a wall.” I have wondered how many of those men suggested building a boat to float the Ark across the river. How many worried about sinking to the bottom of the river while carrying the Ark? Then there are those who must have asked how would God stop the flow of the river - is it possible? With each of the “Jordan River” experiences I have had throughout my life, my faith in God has deepened. My roots go a little deeper when He calls me out of the comfortable and I begin to trust Him for what seems impossible.

In Texas I worked in ministry and my husband was my number one volunteer for 22 years which resulted in developing lifelong friends. For those who know me well, they have heard me say (and quite often) that I would never move to California. I truly believed that it would be impossible 1) to change careers, 2) to be able to afford to live in the beautiful state where the cost of living is not so great and 3) to leave friends and family behind. God had other plans. He brought my husband and to the place where we had to make choice. There were multiple circumstances converging much like the perfect storm so I tried everything I knew to find a way out, around, over, but He knew best. I chose to trust Him. As my trust grew and as I gave up control He paved the way to bring us to one of the best times of our lives. Four years ago I couldn’t see how the outcome could possibly be a blessing, but today I am overflowing with gratefulness for all He has done for me, my husband, Win, and our amazing family. This is only one of hundreds of circumstances, each building upon the other, of how God brought us to the edge then would ask, “Now, let me take control so that I can lead you the rest of the way.” His way is always better than what I could dream of or imagine.  

Be sure to download this printable while it's free! 

 The scriptures used for this series came from Joyce Meyers download, “Who God Made You To Be"


7 Days of R & R August 09 2015, 0 Comments

R E S T // I wanted to let you know that after much thought I've decided to take 7 days off from the #TruthAboutWhoYouAre series to spend some much needed downtime with my husband & family! I plan to kick it back up on the 17th!

Part of me wanted to keep working on vacation but then I thought, if I can't take off a week now when my business is so small & the pressure is low then how will I ever be expected to take time off in the future? Reminded lately that we are human beings not human doings and sometimes we need to just "be" & stop focusing on all we need/want to do. I'm looking forward to spending time this week with my husband, family, and my Creator in the great outdoors!

If you're like me & have a hard time slowing down I encourage to carve out some time to just "be"... Even if it's just 30 minutes. Set the to do list down and take some time to do something you enjoy. Watch the sunset, call a friend, get coffee with your spouse. And just be.

"Are you tired? Worn out? Burned out on religion? Come to me. Get away with me and you’ll recover your life. I’ll show you how to take a real rest. Walk with me and work with me—watch how I do it. Learn the unforced rhythms of grace. I won’t lay anything heavy or ill-fitting on you. Keep company with me and you’ll learn to live freely and lightly."

Matthew 11:28-30

See you in a week!

xoxo

Kristen


I am Redeemed | Day 38 August 08 2015, 0 Comments

In case you missed the announcement about this NEW SERIES | #TruthAboutWhoYouAre take a moment to check out this blog post

#TruthAboutWhoYouAre

This is Day 38 of 48 of the #TruthAboutWhoYouAre series. Thank you so much for joining in on this journey with me. I hope you are inspired over this 7 week series.

I am a doer of the Word and blessed in my actions - James 1:22 & 25A little bit about Miss Ashley Jackson | raised in the beautiful Pacific Northwest for over 20 years.  Parents, four siblings and their spouses, nephews and niece all still reside in Washington state.  Called to “The Promised Land” (Texas) April 2011.  Loving the sunshine, big hair, sparkles, Gateway Church and all things “southern.”  Greatest passion is STEWARDSHIP of every area of life – calling, resources, relationships, finances, legacy and home.  Excited to continue to learn to be a “Southern Belle” and anointed “Domestic Diva” in Dallas.

 

Have any of you seen any of the Jimmy Fallon “Ew!” skits?  Oh my goodness, they are hilarious and over the top!  Character Sara (played by Jimmy himself) talks about everything that is “ew” in the world.  Well, curses are Ew! and I think Jesus thinks so too!

Hebrews 12:2 says, “fixing our eyes on Jesus, the [b]author and perfecter of faith, who for the joy set before Him endured the cross, DESPISING the shame, and has sat down at the right hand of the throne of God…”  Despise in this passage denotes to loathe something; repulse.  Jesus endured the cross because He was so repulsed by the curse of the law and effects on His people (Gal 3:13). 

He is not repulsed by you, but moved with great compassion to see you free.

There are things in each of our lives that He wants to REDEEM.  We are redeemed from the curse of sin.  Sickness and poverty no have to wreck havoc on our lives.  Unlike character Sara who says “Ew!” about everything in the skit, Jesus might say Ew! But He does something about it.

Be sure to download this printable while it's free! 

 The scriptures used for this series came from Joyce Meyers download, “Who God Made You To Be”

And just in case you have not seen the Jimmy Fallon skit - enjoy this one featuring Taylor Swift

 


I am Delivered | Day 37 August 06 2015, 0 Comments

In case you missed the announcement about this NEW SERIES | #TruthAboutWhoYouAre take a moment to check out this blog post

#TruthAboutWhoYouAre

This is Day 37 of 48 of the #TruthAboutWhoYouAre series. Thank you so much for joining in on this journey with me. I hope you are inspired over this 7 week series.

Today’s guest writer is my beautiful Katie Boyd. She’s a wife, a mom, a teacher, and a pastor at @theocmovement. Thank you Katie for sharing these powerful thoughts!

 

 

I am delivered from the power of darkness and translated into God’s kingdom Colossians 1:13

It’s pitch dark. You can’t find the smallest hint of light anywhere in sight. You hold your hand out in front of your face. Nothing. Your heart begins to race as you slowly shuffle your feet inch by inch.  All your senses are heightened and even the tiniest noise makes you more uneasy of what is ahead.  As you continue, you flail your arms around to ensure you don’t run into any obstacle that may lie ahead.

A few years back, I felt like I was living in complete darkness.  Literally.  I was struggling with depression, living in a constant state of heightened emotions and anxiety.  My life felt completely out of control, which doesn’t suit my personality well.  The shame from my past loomed over me like a dark cloud.  No matter which direction I turned, I couldn’t escape.

Have you ever felt like you were living in the dark?  Wondering what is just beyond this season that doesn’t seem to end.  Are you inching your way through life frantically searching for any amount of light to help your eyes adjust to your surroundings?

Looking back, I can see how God gently guided me around various obstacles that stood right in front of me.  I had come to the end of my rope and knew God wanted me to surrender control and let go of my shame. Even though I felt helpless, I knew God had a plan.  Through difficult and dark times, God will guide our every step and shine a light that will clearly direct us, if we trust in Him.  He will deliver us; free us completely from the power of darkness. In Colossians 1:13 (MSG), it says “God rescued us from dead-end alleys and dark dungeons. He’s set us up in the kingdom of the Son he loves so much, the Son who got us out of the pit we were in, got rid of the sins we were doomed to keep repeating.”

When we solely rely on God to navigate our steps, then we can have confidence that He will always illuminate our path.  It may not be the whole path; it may just be one or two steps ahead.  But instead of focusing on the surrounding darkness from our past or current situations, we have to choose to focus on God’s word and the promises He gives us.

In the midst of a difficult decision, or even a challenging season, believe and trust that you ARE delivered from darkness.  When you seek Him, He will guide you.  It may still feel dark.  There may not be any light in sight, but He will come right alongside you and lead the way.

Be sure to download this printable while it's free! 

The scriptures used for this series came from Joyce Meyers download, “Who God Made You To Be”


I am Forgiven | Day 36 August 06 2015, 0 Comments

In case you missed the announcement about this NEW SERIES | #TruthAboutWhoYouAre take a moment to check out this blog post

#TruthAboutWhoYouAre

This is Day 36 of 48 of the #TruthAboutWhoYouAre series. Thank you so much for joining in on this journey with me. I hope you are inspired over this 7 week series.

It's Kristen Stansell here and I will be sharing my thoughts on today's scripture! If you struggle with anytime of fear then this is for you - this scripture has helped me face some things in life that are bigger than me because it is a reminder that who lives inside of me is greater than the one that lives in the world. Photo credit: Rochelle VanSickle

I am forgiven of all my sins and washed in the Blood - Ephesians 1:7 

I literally dropped out of pre-school when I was 4 years old. I wasn't much of a trouble maker in school because I wanted the teachers to like me. One day, my creative mind, decided to pretend that a plastic plate from the kitchen set was a Frisbee so I launched it RIGHT - AT - MY -TEACHERS - HEAD. Of course that wasn't my intention - but that's what happened. I regretted it from the second the plate left my chubby little hands. I got sent to time out and there I vowed to never return to school again. I don't know how I did it but I convinced my mom to not bring back EVER AGAIN and she didn't. 

That night, as a 4 year old, I remember shame gripping my mind. I was standing in the shower just pleading with God to rewind that day and let me have a do over. I can remember it like it was yesterday. I couldn't stand it that I did something so childish (hello, I was only 4). One moment of careless behavior turned into years of shame. It wasn't that the act of throwing the plate was so terribly awful - the problem was that I chose to carry the shame of the decision instead of allowing my Savior to take the weight. This incident as a 4 year old is the first incident I can remember that I chose to keep my mistake a secret and just bottle up the shame. That decision lead to a pattern of how I handled sin and shame for the years to come. 

In my teens and twenties, I found myself in plenty moments of carelessness that lead to making really bad decisions. I can remember praying to God and asking for forgiveness but it was like no matter what I did, the shame continued to haunt me. I struggled to break free from the sin. The moment that I finally began to see freedom from the sin and shame I had lived with was when I was prompted to share my struggles, share my shame, and share my sin with a trusted leader. I always wanted everyone to think I had it all together so choosing to talk about the mess that hid under the surface of my smiling face was one of the hardest things I have ever done but it was worth it. 

If you are feeling the weight of sin, shame, or guilt, I want to first encourage you to bring it to God if you haven't already. Express your struggle and know deep down in your heart that you have already been forgiven and washed by the blood of Jesus. Being washed in the blood of Jesus means that we have been made clean and blameless before God. Next, I want to encourage you to speak up to someone you can trust about whatever it is you struggle with. Maybe a leader at church, a pastor, or a parent. It might sound crazy if this is something you have never done before but trust me it is worth it. Anytime I ever allowed another person to come along side me, mess and all, I became that much stronger. We don't have to fight our battles alone. In fact, the Bible gives us a couple scriptures that remind us we are at our best when we are together. 

Therefore, confess your sins to one another and pray for one another, that you may be healed. The prayer of a righteous person has great power as it is working.

- James 5:16

Two are better than one, because they have a good reward for their toil.  For if they fall, one will lift up his fellow. But woe to him who is alone when he falls and has not another to lift him up! Again, if two lie together, they keep warm, but how can one keep warm alone? And though a man might prevail against one who is alone, two will withstand him—a threefold cord is not quickly broken. 

- Ecclesiastes 4:9-12

Iron sharpens iron, and one man sharpens another. 

- Proverbs 27:17

Be sure to download this printable while it's free! 

 

The scriptures used for this series came from Joyce Meyers download, “Who God Made You To Be”


I am His Elect | Day 35 August 04 2015, 0 Comments

In case you missed the announcement about this NEW SERIES | #TruthAboutWhoYouAre take a moment to check out this blog post

#TruthAboutWhoYouAre

This is Day 35 of 48 of the #TruthAboutWhoYouAre series. Thank you so much for joining in on this journey with me. I hope you are inspired over this 7 week series.


I am His elect, full of mercy, kindness, humility, and longsuffering - Romans 8:33; Colossians 3:12

 

Be sure to download this printable while it's free! 

The scriptures used for this series came from Joyce Meyers download, “Who God Made You To Be”


I am the Light of the World | Day 34 August 03 2015, 0 Comments

In case you missed the announcement about this NEW SERIES | #TruthAboutWhoYouAre take a moment to check out this blog post

#TruthAboutWhoYouAre

This is Day 34 of 48 of the #TruthAboutWhoYouAre series. Thank you so much for joining in on this journey with me. I hope you are inspired over this 7 week series.

I am happy to welcome back Laura (aka Girly) Gordy. She is a friend of mine, a wife, a mom and a pastor at my church, The OC Movement. She is passionate about helping people experience freedom which is why I think it is amazing she chose to write about today's scripture. I hope you enjoy and can learn something new from her words.  

I am the light of the world - Matthew 5:14

I am the Light of the World. What a mandate?  I think for years I have slightly altered the truth of Matthew 5:14.  If I were to recite it to you from memory I think it would have gone something like this: “I am a light to this world.”  You might be thinking, “Yep, that’s pretty much it.”  But there’s something deceiving to my subtle deviations of this scripture.  I’ll explain.  

I would have told you that our lives are like each of us having a flashlight to illuminate the darkness around us.  Which is good, but I’ve recently walked through a season where it was a struggle to ‘turn on my flashlight.’ I wondered how necessary my light amongst the host of flashlights I saw around me, really was.  It’ll be ok if, just for today, I hide in the corner and deal with my own stuff, right?!? I mean, I’ve been faithful for a long time. I’ve had my flashlight on full beam and I’m just out of batteries for today.  I know you’ve been there.  

But as I read and reread this scripture there is a seemingly insignificant tiny word that stands out: THE.  ‘The’ is a scary word.  ‘The’ means I am it.  ‘The Light of the World’ no longer depicts me standing in my kitchen shaking a flashlight back and forth trying to squeeze a little more juice out of some long-overdue batteries. ‘The’ light of the world means I have some course correcting to do.

The only understanding we have for THE light of the world is the sun.  I’ll spare you all the scientific details, but there is one thing that the Sun does besides, of course, illuminating the darkness: it grows life.  Take a jog down memory lane to your 6th grade science project on photosynthesis and you might recall that sunlight acts as actual food for plant life!  There is no substitute for it, it is a requirement for growth.  What does that mean for us?  Our presence in this world makes a difference and is vital.  Not only are we the beacon of hope pointing the way for others who are lost to the live-saving joy that is found in Jesus Christ, but we are also called to see the first signs of life and growth in others and encourage it and bring it to life with our words and actions. When I look around, there are so many seedlings of hope, restoration, healing, and dreaming that I am called to coax into existence!  The light I am called to be to this world matters because the people and family that are around me matter. I will be the Light of the World today. I will be a beacon of hope and a grower of life!

I am the Light of the World.

Be sure to download this printable while it's free! 

 

The scriptures used for this series came from Joyce Meyers download, “Who God Made You To Be”


I am the Head | Day 33 August 02 2015, 0 Comments

In case you missed the announcement about this NEW SERIES | #TruthAboutWhoYouAre take a moment to check out this blog post

#TruthAboutWhoYouAre

This is Day 33 of 48 of the #TruthAboutWhoYouAre series. Thank you so much for joining in on this journey with me. I hope you are inspired over this 7 week series.

I would like to introduce to you my friend Rosanna Delurgio. She is competitive swimmer turned writer, business and nutrition coach through Advocare, and young adults leader at her church C3. Follow her journey at competingwithpurpose.com, Facebook: Competing With Purpose, and Instagram: @competingwithpurpose

 

I am the head and not the tail; I am above only and not beneath - Deuteronomy 28:13
The enemy attacks us at the point of our greatest strength.  I believe the reason our identity is attacked so strongly is because when we really understand all that Jesus's life and resurrection has given us access to we become unstoppable for the kingdom of God.  Here scripture so plainly reminds us of our position.  No situation changes this truth.  The enemy will do everything he can to intimidate us and try to convince us otherwise.  I have used this verse as a replacement thought any time when I begin to feel or think defeated thoughts.  It is not enough to identify the thoughts we have that are contrary to God and just try to stop thinking them.  We are more successful when we find those thoughts, hold them captive, and replace them with the word of God.  That is how I stand on His promises.  Not just by stopping the negative chatter in my mind, but digging into the word of God and stating that until it becomes my truth.  Don't take my word for it though, I challenge you to do the same. Speak this "I am.." statement any time you are feeling defeated until peace comes and watch how your boldness increases.  
Be sure to download this printable while it's free! 

The scriptures used for this series came from Joyce Meyers download, “Who God Made You To Be”

 


I am the Temple of the Holy Spirit | Day 32 August 01 2015, 0 Comments

This is Day 32 of 48 of the #TruthAboutWhoYouAre series. Thank you so much for joining in on this journey with me. I hope you are inspired over this 7 week series.

So thankful to welcome Kelly Goff as the guest writer for today! @kelly_goff is the Young Adults/Youth Pastor as well as the Worship Pastor at @therockaz The Rock Church in Goodyear, Arizona. Hope this word helps you discover a little bit more about who you are in Christ.

I am the temple of the Holy Spirit; I am not my own - 1 Corinthians 6:19

10 years ago I found myself ready to face and overcome an eating disorder that I had given in to for about 3 years. I was 5’6, 95 pounds, weak and lost. Not being sure of really where to start,  I did all I knew to do…I turned to Jesus. I threw myself at His feet and asked Him to heal me. I began a journey with Him unlike anything I had experienced before. I remember one day as I was studying, 1 Corinthians 6:19 leaped off the page.


“Do you not know your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit, who is in you, whom you have received from God? You are not your own; you were bought at a price. Therefore honor God with your body.” I realized that day what I had been doing and my heart was grieved. This earthly body I was abusing every single day was the very place the Holy Spirit had chosen to live and the instrument He had chosen to use on this earth for His glory. Here I was just throwing that away because I didn’t see myself as valuable, I didn’t see myself as anything special…I definitely didn’t see myself as anything worth dying for. But this verse told me God thought so highly of me He chose to buy me back from my sin at the cost of His Son AND He chose me to do His will here on this earth. What a gift I had been given!


From that day forward I began to view myself differently and healing began. This verse has been so monumental to me, I now have “you are not your own” tattooed around my wrist as a forever reminder of all God has done in my life.

 

Be sure to download this printable while it's free! 

 


I am the Righteousness of God in Jesus Christ | Day 31 July 31 2015, 0 Comments

This is Day 31 of 48 of the #TruthAboutWhoYouAre series. Thank you so much for joining in on this journey with me. I hope you are inspired over this 7 week series.

Excited to welcome Jessica Parham as the guest writer for today. She's a friend of mine, a pastor at @theocmovement with her husband, & has two kids. Be sure to follow along her journey on Instagram @jessicaparham Enjoy!

I am the righteousness of God in Jesus Christ - 2 Corinthians 5:21

I have written and rewritten this about five times now. “Maybe I should talk about righteousness versus holiness”. Scratch that. “Becoming righteous because of Christ and our immediate inheritance...like having a rich uncle you never knew about die (who lived a very fulfilling life)”. Nah, scratch that. “Just tell Kristen you can’t do it”. I can’t do that...well maybe...no I can’t.

It was just supposed to be real simple, a quick little couple of paragraphs on this one verse so why am I making it so difficult? But isn’t that how we treat righteousness? God made everything so simple for us, too simple for us to comprehend sometimes. The first part of verse 21 says, “For our sake He made Christ to be sin who knew no sin”. It’s that whole too good to be true thing. The extraordinary gift of righteousness is secured through Christ’s death on the cross. As soon as we entered into a personal relationship with Jesus, we were made righteous, or made in right standing with God. Our righteousness is found in Christ alone and there is nothing we can do to earn it.

Just as I kept picking apart this blog I needed to write, we do that in our own lives. Maybe more so as women. My natural tendency is to be a little critical, okay maybe a lot. It’s just easier for me to see the things going wrong over the things going right. It’s a challenge, but once we can stop thinking about all the things wrong with us and start thinking more about all of the things that are right with Jesus, we can become who God has already made us! The things we can never do in our own strength can begin to happen in God’s strength!

In that comes benefits, Isaiah 32:17 says “And the effect of righteousness will be peace [internal and external], and the result of righteousness will be quietness and confident trust forever.”

Put on the righteousness of God in Christ Jesus! Stop trying to become what you already are!


Be sure to download this printable while it's free! 

 


I am part of a Chosen Generation & a Royal Priesthood | Day 30 July 30 2015, 0 Comments

This is Day 30 of 48 of the #TruthAboutWhoYouAre series. Thank you so much for joining in on this journey with me. I hope you are inspired over this 7 week series.

Today’s post is written by someone I have known since I was a little girl and absolutely love! She has helped me successfully navigate through many of life's challenges. Her name is Meghan Robinson  Her and her husband @careyrobinsonoc are my pastors at @theocmovement. She's one of the most passionate people I know and I am so excited to share her thoughts on today's verse. Follow along in her journey and inspiring posts via Instagram: @divapastor 

I am part of a chosen generation, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, a purchased people - 1 Peter 2:9

 

I always dreamed of being a princess! Seriously….I used to dream about it! I watched every Disney princess movie and I was obsessed when Princess Diaries came out! The idea of that closet was so enticing! (If you don’t know what I’m talking about….you can check it out later.)

 

Yes, I was that girl and now I have two daughters who have been through their own princess stage! We have had many princess dresses and high heeled shoes in this house! Now I love princess’ like Merida and Mulan and I dream of having that kind of bravery! Can you relate? Have you ever dreamed of what your life would be like…IF….you were royalty?

 

1 Peter 2:9 says “I am part of a chosen generation a ROYAL priesthood, a holy nation, a purchased people (or people belonging to God.)”

 

Isn’t it interesting that you and me, when we said yes to Jesus, we were adopted into HIS royal family! So technically that makes me a princess! He is the King….and He is our heavenly father….stands to reason, I am a princess! Now I don’t plan on walking around in a tiara….but metaphorically I should and so should you!

 

I’ve never seen a prince or princess who does not walk with confidence. Why? Because they know who they are and to whom they belong. They throw their shoulders back, hold their head high and represent their kingdom well!

 

We need to know to whom we belong! You belong to the family of GOD….you are accepted…you are esteemed…you are valued. You are loved beyond measure! Why? Because you are a son or daughter of the King! You are royalty. Now throw your shoulders back and rest in that confidence! You are exactly who He created you to be.

 

Maybe you’ve struggled with this concept because you have been searching for your identity outside of Christ. The words that people have said to you have become etched on the fabric of your heart. Maybe your life has been defined by what you don’t have yet…but think you want. Maybe you feel incomplete, inadequate, inferior.

 

Can I just tell you….all of this striving, it is never fulfilling in and of itself. Our identity has to be founded in Christ. We have to know who He is and who he say’s that WE are. That is what this devotional has been all about! Learning what God say’s about you and me.

 

The beginning of this scripture declared “You are a CHOSEN generation!” You are chosen! He picked you! He gave you your own set of looks, talents and passions that are unique to you. He placed you in your sphere of influence for such a time as this! In the words of Joyce Meyer, “you get something and you don’t get something.” Stop comparing your life to someone else’s life. God gave you yours! I don’t know why you are struggling, I don’t know why bad things happen to good people. I don’t know why life isn’t fair.

 

But I do know that you are CHOSEN! You are a son or daughter of the most high King of Kings! You can let that define your identity and walk in confidence day by day allowing HIM to shape your story!

 

Be sure to download this printable while it's free! 

 


I am an Ambassador for Christ | Day 29 July 30 2015, 0 Comments

In case you missed the announcement about this NEW SERIES | #TruthAboutWhoYouAre take a moment to check out this blog post

#TruthAboutWhoYouAre

This is Day 29 of 48 of the #TruthAboutWhoYouAre series. Thank you so much for joining in on this journey with me. I hope you are inspired over this 7 week series.

Today’s post is written by someone I have known since I was a little girl and absolutely love! She has helped me successfully navigate through many of life's challenges. Her name is Meghan Robinson  Her and her husband @careyrobinsonoc are my pastors at @theocmovement. She's one of the most passionate people I know and I am so excited to share her thoughts on today's verse. Follow along in her journey and inspiring posts via Instagram: @divapastor 

I am an ambassador for Christ - 2 Corinthians 5:20

In Washington DC you will find many foreign embassies as well as the homes of each of their ambassadors. Although these ambassadors live in Washington DC, it is not their home. An ambassador represents the kingdom or country they are from.

 

2 Corinthians 5:20 we are reminded that we are Christ’s ambassadors here on planet earth at this time in history! This is not our home. We have been plucked out of eternity and put on the planet for such a time as this! We have a job to do!

 

As an ambassador for Christ, I have a responsibility to open my mouth and share my story. To share the hope that is found in Jesus Christ! Sometimes we shy away from sharing our faith because we don’t want to be pushy or we are afraid of what the other person will think! I think we can easily forget how important our role is in the big picture. Jesus is counting on us, his people to represent him well.

 

Romans 10:14 says “How then will they call on him in whom they have not believed? And how are they to believe in him of whom they have never heard? And how are they to hear without someone preaching?”

 

Preaching does not mean you have a microphone in your hand or a bullhorn and sign on the side of the road (in fact….please do not ever do  that! ) Preaching happens with your life, as you walk out your story! It happens as you lend a hand to those in need, as you share hope with your co-worker or a frustrated parent at your child’s school. It happens when you pray for your friends who are struggling, not just privately but with them. You don’t have to have a degree in theology to share your faith…just your story!

 

We are Christ’s ambassadors representing His Kingdom and we have a part to play in history, right now in the sphere of influence he has placed you in! Be Brave and Speak Up!

 

Be sure to download this printable while it's free! 

 

The scriptures used for this series came from Joyce Meyers download, “Who God Made You To Be”

Be sure to download this printable while it's free! 

 


I am a Partaker of His Divine Nature | Day 28 July 28 2015, 0 Comments

In case you missed the announcement about this NEW SERIES | #TruthAboutWhoYouAre take a moment to check out this blog post

#TruthAboutWhoYouAre

This is Day 28 of 48 of the #TruthAboutWhoYouAre series. Thank you so much for joining in on this journey with me. I hope you are inspired over this 7 week series.

I am so happy to introduce today's writer. Connie Lelacheur & her husband were my first youth pastors I had growing up. Here is a little bit about Connie: "I am happy to be a wife to Scott, mom to Madison, son in law Matt, Macie and Austin.  My husband and I have been in the ministry for over 30 years and currently are the Lead Pastors of Summit Christian Church in the foothills of Los Angeles."

I am a partaker of His divine nature - 2 Peter 1:3-4

I love God's promises and I love that for every situation, circumstance and need he provides us with a promise.  He has given us everything we need to live this life 2 Peter 1:3  tells us and in the next verse (vs 4) that we are also  partakers of His divine nature.   Just as everything is divinely held within a tiny seed that is needed for it to bloom and flourish as the creator intended, we have everything we need to divinely bloom and flourish as the creator has intended, even when facing harsh circumstances.   Several years ago I was diagnosed with an autoimmune disease that had the potential to keep me in bed for months. With a husband and young children to care for along with the responsibility I felt of helping my husband Pastor a church, I found myself discouraged, frustrated and unwilling to accept that prognosis.  After a short time I decided enough was enough and got up to resume my responsibilities.  I found that self-will can get you a measure of healing but it was not until I came across the verse in Romans  8:11 that I fully partook in God's divine healing nature.  The verse says “And if the Spirit of him who raised Jesus from the dead is living in you, he who raised Christ from the dead will also give life to your mortal bodies because of his Spirit that lives in you.”  That scripture resounded so loudly within me that I instantly felt stronger and knew that God had healed me.  I was tested and they found the disease was no longer in my system.  Praise God!!  Gods divine healing nature bloomed in me and has forever changed my perspective of sickness and disease from fear to faith.

Be sure to download this printable while it's free! 

 

The scriptures used for this series came from Joyce Meyers download, “Who God Made You To Be”

Be sure to download this printable while it's free! 

 


I am an Overcomer | Day 27 July 28 2015, 0 Comments

In case you missed the announcement about this NEW SERIES | #TruthAboutWhoYouAre take a moment to check out this blog post

#TruthAboutWhoYouAre

This is Day 27 of 48 of the #TruthAboutWhoYouAre series. Thank you so much for joining in on this journey with me. I hope you are inspired over this 7 week series.

A little about Judy Calderon. I was born and raised in Washington state.  Moved to Orange County, California 18 years ago. Married to my wonderful husband Michael for 29 years. Two married children and 4 grand children! Very involved at a great church, The Movement in Mission Viejo, California.
I have a love for the mission field and have had the opportunity to go to the nations over 35 times. Love to travel, spend time with my family and friends, and love meeting new people!

 

 

Rev 12:11 I am an overcomer by the blood of the Lamb and the word of my testimony!

How was Satan defeated? By the blood of the Lamb! The blood of Christ is the greatest weapon we have against the devil. He accuses us continually! He points out every failing of every one of God's people. What can silence the enemy in our lives? The blood of the Lamb. Only the blood that Christ shed for our sins covers our inadequacies before God. What else? The Word of their testimony, this defeats Satan. Do you have a testimony? Was there a day you met Jesus at the foot of the cross? You cried out and He answered you! For me personally, the day I cried out to Jesus, in January of 1989, He heard my cry and answer me! His amazing grace totally transformed me and rearranged my life completely! Now my life has real meaning. Up to that point, throughout my whole life I had been searching and longing for meaning and purpose in my life.

When we accept Jesus as our Lord and Savior we all have a testimony to share with those around us. A story to tell! The words of your personal experience of how your life was and how it is now can not  be disputed! By definition a story is "an account of past events in someone's life." It is sharing your life experience and your journey with another person. Jesus used stories as His primary way to connect and minister to people. Often He would speak in parables to those that followed Him. A parable is "an earthy story with heavenly meaning."

Your story of how God changed your life is not for you alone. It is meant to be shared. It is your story, your firsthand account of what God through Christ has done in your life.  Your testimony has authority. Many questions about the Bible you may not be able to answer, but you are the authority on your own testimony.  When you tell your story of how God has worked a miracle in your life, or how He has blessed you, transformed you, lifted and encouraged you, perhaps even healed you, no one can argue or debate it. You go beyond the realm of knowledge into the realm of relationship with God. Paul gives his testimony in Acts 22:1-16 and 26:9-23. First Paul says, "I have not always been a Christian, but God showed me my need of Jesus Christ. I committed my life to Jesus and now my life is different." Are you telling your story?

 Be sure to download this printable while it's free! 

The scriptures used for this series came from Joyce Meyers download, “Who God Made You To Be”

Be sure to download this printable while it's free! 

 


I am More Than a Conqueror - Day 26 July 26 2015, 0 Comments

In case you missed the announcement about this NEW SERIES | #TruthAboutWhoYouAre take a moment to check out this blog post

#TruthAboutWhoYouAre

This is Day 25 of 48 of the #TruthAboutWhoYouAre series. Thank you so much for joining in on this journey with me. I hope you are inspired over this 7 week series.

I would like to introduce to you my friend Rosanna Delurgio. She is competitive swimmer turned writer, business and nutrition coach through Advocare, and young adults leader at her church C3. Follow her journey at competingwithpurpose.com, Facebook: Competing With Purpose, and Instagram: @competingwithpurpose

 

I am more than a conqueror through Him who loves me. - Romans 8:37
How can you not just be a conqueror but more than a conqueror?  Isn't it enough just to win?  Those are questions I have asked myself when faced with this verse in devotion or when the Lord would bring it to mind.  It seems like something nice to say, but I believe it is not flattery or hype that God takes the time to put this in scripture.  I believe it is to stretch our thinking of what "enough" really is.  We are not just to win in life, but so exceed what is expected through what God does through us that two things happen.  
First, the world around us knows there is something that sets us apart.  Then we are able to give God glory! 
Secondly, our success being more than we can handle allows us the resources and opportunity to bless others.  We are given more than we can handle to have a need created to reach out and help those around us. 
Our God has called us not to just live life, but a live a life abundantly!  You are more than a conqueror.  You might as well start expecting the excess so you can determine where you will direct it now.  

 

Be sure to download this printable while it's free! 

The scriptures used for this series came from Joyce Meyers download, “Who God Made You To Be”

Be sure to download this printable while it's free! 

 


I am Joint-Heir with Christ | Day 25 July 26 2015, 0 Comments

In case you missed the announcement about this NEW SERIES | #TruthAboutWhoYouAre take a moment to check out this blog post

#TruthAboutWhoYouAre

This is Day 25 of 48 of the #TruthAboutWhoYouAre series. Thank you so much for joining in on this journey with me. I hope you are inspired over this 7 week series.

I am a joint-heir with Christ - Romans 8:17 

More than likely this verse is one that you have heard quite a few times:

For God so loved the world, that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life. John 3:16

That was probably the first verse I memorized. How often though, do we really think about what that means? I'm in a process of wanting to start a family. Some days it's all I can think about. I can't imagine what it would be like to have the child that I have hoped and prayed for and then have to give that child up. It makes me sad just thinking about it. God gave His ONE and ONLY son for us - because of His great love for us. I don't even know how to fathom the love that He has for us. 

Moving beyond that scripture, we read in Romans that God didn't just give up His one and only son to to bring redemption too all people that choice to accept Christ - He also made us joint-heirs with Christ. Jesus willingly died in our place so that we would have eternal life and then we are given the position of joint-heirs with Christ. If I sound a little redundant right now it's because as I am typing this up I am just thinking about how easy it is to take these scriptures for granit. Christ suffered so that we might live. Let's read this portion of scripture from Romans below:

For you did not receive the spirit of slavery to fall back into fear, but you have received the Spirit of adoption as sons, by whom we cry, “Abba! Father!” The Spirit himself bears witness with our spirit that we are children of God, and if children, then heirs—heirs of God and fellow heirs with Christ, provided we suffer with him in order that we may also be glorified with him. Romans 8:15-17

Once giving our lives to Christ, we aren't promised an easy life. Jesus suffered and so will we. How many of you are suffering right now? Don't mistake your suffering for a lack of love from our Heavenly Father. In Psalms 139:7 says, "I can never escape from your Spirit! I can never get away from your presence!" Whether we are on cloud 9 or in one of our greatest struggles - God is there. He never leaves our side. Look to Him for strength. You might be feeling hard pressed but know that you will not be crushed. 

We are pressed on every side by troubles, but we are not crushed. We are perplexed, but not driven to despair. 2 Corinthians 4:8

If you are in a state of struggle one of the best things I have found to do is praise God. I know it's opposite of what we feel like doing. But when you're feeling low one of the best things to do is to look up and reach up to the one who loves you more than you could ever imagine. He is a good good Father and I know that when our heart breaks so does His. Let His love, peace, and grace wash over you. 

Let's take a look one more time at Romans 8:17-18 in The Message Bible

And we know we are going to get what's coming to us - an unbelievable inheritance! We go through exactly what Christ goes through. If we go through the hard times with him, then we're certainly going to go through the good times with him! That's why I don't think there's any comparison between the present hard times and the coming good times.  

Take a minute to listen to this song and let the words wash over you. 

 

Be sure to download this printable while it's free! 

 

 The scriptures used for this series came from Joyce Meyers download, “Who God Made You To Be”


I am a Doer of the Word | Day 24 July 25 2015, 0 Comments

In case you missed the announcement about this NEW SERIES | #TruthAboutWhoYouAre take a moment to check out this blog post

#TruthAboutWhoYouAre

This is Day 24 of 48 of the #TruthAboutWhoYouAre series. Thank you so much for joining in on this journey with me. I hope you are inspired over this 7 week series.

 


A little bit about Miss Ashley Jackson | raised in the beautiful Pacific Northwest for over 20 years.  Parents, four siblings and their spouses, nephews and niece all still reside in Washington state.  Called to “The Promised Land” (Texas) April 2011.  Loving the sunshine, big hair, sparkles, Gateway Church and all things “southern.”  Greatest passion is STEWARDSHIP of every area of life – calling, resources, relationships, finances, legacy and home.  Excited to continue to learn to be a “Southern Belle” and anointed “Domestic Diva” in Dallas.

 

 

I am a doer of the Word and blessed in my actions - James 1:22 & 25

I am one of the “Jackson Five” – the 4th of 5 Jackson siblings.  I (we) have been affectionately nicknamed “Action Jackson” over the years.  That fun “Action Jackson” nickname has actually become part of my identity.  I now know I am called to inspire people to ACTION.  Love helping co-workers or friends walk away from a meeting or coffee date with “action items.”  These are not merely more tasks or more stuff for the sake of busyness, but helping people focus on what really needs to happen – “Strategic To-dos.”

I love this Who I Am in Christ statement today because it is the essence of my heart and walk with Jesus.  I am a doer of the Word and blessed in my actions.  We all know we need to READ, KNOW and DO the Word of God.  We are blessed in doing His written Word and when we obey His voice!

I have just one simple ACTION for you today (and recommend this EVERY DAY ☺).  ASK the Lord (2) questions:

  1. Jesus, where should I read in your Word today?  Listen.  He knows you better then anyone else.  That passage or verse you never thought of could  be exactly what your soul and spirit needs today.
  2. Lord, what would you like me to focus on today?  Get your marching orders for the day from the Lord.  Maybe you have a list and it is overwhelming…Where do I start?  How am I going to get all of this done?  He will show you.  Again, He knows you better then anyone else.  He will show you specifically today.

I can’t remember a day where my mom hasn’t asked the Lord these questions.  Grew up with her teaching me to hear God on my own – whether in my devotions or practically. “Ashley, what is the Lord telling you?”  I know you will be BLESSED as you quiet your heart as you ask, listen, know and do what He tells you to do!  His action for you today might simply be REST or WAIT or GO ☺  You won’t know until you ASK Him!

John 5:19 So Jesus explained, "I tell you the truth, the Son can do nothing by himself. He does only what he sees the Father doing. Whatever the Father does, the Son also does. (NLT)

- Ashley Jackson 

Ashley included these additional versions of the today's scripture in her notes and I would like to encourage you to read them! 

22 Do not merely listen to the word, and so deceive yourselves. Do what it says. 23 Anyone who listens to the word but does not do what it says is like someone who looks at his face in a mirror 24 and, after looking at himself, goes away and immediately forgets what he looks like. 25 But whoever looks intently into the perfect law that gives freedom, and continues in it—not forgetting what they have heard, but doing it—they will be blessed in what they do. (NIV)

22 But prove yourselves doers of the word, and not merely hearers who delude themselves. 23 For if anyone is a hearer of the word and not a doer, he is like a man who looks at his [x]natural face in a mirror; 24 for once he has looked at himself and gone away, [y]he has immediately forgotten what kind of person he was. 25 But one who looks intently at the perfect law, the law of liberty, and abides by it, not having become a forgetful hearer but [z]an effectual doer, this man will be blessed in [aa]what he does. (NASB)

22-24 Don’t fool yourself into thinking that you are a listener when you are anything but, letting the Word go in one ear and out the other. Act on what you hear! Those who hear and don’t act are like those who glance in the mirror, walk away, and two minutes later have no idea who they are, what they look like.

25 But whoever catches a glimpse of the revealed counsel of God—the free life!—even out of the corner of his eye, and sticks with it, is no distracted scatterbrain but a man or woman of action. That person will find delight and affirmation in the action. (The Message)

 

Be sure to download this printable while it's free! 

 

 The scriptures used for this series came from Joyce Meyers download, “Who God Made You To Be”


I am a Believer | Day 23 July 24 2015, 0 Comments

In case you missed the announcement about this NEW SERIES | #TruthAboutWhoYouAre take a moment to check out this blog post

#TruthAboutWhoYouAre

This is Day 22 of 48 of the #TruthAboutWhoYouAre series. Thank you so much for joining in on this journey with me. I hope you are inspired over this 7 week series.

It's Kristen Stansell and I will be sharing my thoughts on today's scripture. I'm married, involved in an amazing church, and am the person behind Crafted By. Thank you for being a part of this journey. Photo credit: Rochelle VanSickle

I am a believer, and the light of the Gospel shines in my mind - 2 Corinthians 4:4

You know when you stay somewhere besides your own home and you have to learn where all the light switches are? Have you ever woken up in the middle of the night and scanned your hand all along the wall with clue how to turn the lights on? I can't tell you how many times that has happened to me - even in my own home. Thankfully, now we have iPhones that work as a personal flashlight. But prior to that, it was very common to walk around a room aimlessly searching for a light switch and stubbing my toe along the way! 

The Bible reveals to us that until we surrender our lives to Christ we are in darkness and unable to see the light. So basically, before we allow Christ into our lives, we are walking around in darkness with our hands stretched out scanning every wall for the light switch. I can remember feeling exactly like that. If you haven't read my story that I shared on yesterday's #TruthAboutWhoYouAre, I encourage you to go back and read it. 

As I wrote yesterday, there was a time in my life that I felt completely lost in the dark. I was in a rut at the bottom of the pit and couldn't see any possible way out. My choices had lead me down this dark path but regardless of my mistakes Jesus was just waiting for me to turn back to him and call out for help.  

Let's look at 2 Corinthians 4:4 in Amplified Bible

For the god of this world has blinded the unbelievers’ minds [that they should not discern the truth], preventing them from seeing the illuminating light of the Gospel of the glory of Christ (the Messiah), Who is the Image and Likeness of God.

Who is the god of this world? That's the enemy aka Satan. Our enemy wants to prevent us from seeing the illuminating light of the Gospel. So what does he do? He puts objects of this world in front of our face to try and block the light. Even in broad daylight if something is placed directly in front of our face we are not able to see what's ahead of us anymore. What does the enemy use to block the light? Anything that takes our eyes off of Jesus. Personally, worry has clouded my vision before. Worry takes our eyes off the One who promises to take care of our every need. Fear can cloud our vision. Fear is opposite of trusting God. So maybe God is calling us in a direction but fear comes in and blocks us from trusting our Heavenly Father. It could be lust - wanting things that aren't meant for us to have. Seeking money to a means to our problems instead of seeking God. The enemy will use these types of tactics plus many more to block us from seeing the light and lure us into a trap. 

But we don't have to be afraid! Jesus said that He is the light of the world! Anyone who believes in Him should not abide in darkness. (John 12:46) When we believe in Jesus and rest in His saving grace the blinders are removed and we can now see things we couldn't see before. We are no longer in darkness and we don't have to live like someone in darkness. 

For you are all children of light, children of the day. We are not of the night or of the darkness. So then let us not sleep, as others do, but let us keep awake and be sober. For those who sleep, sleep at night, and those who get drunk, are drunk at night. But since we belong to the day, let us be sober, having put on the breastplate of faith and love, and for a helmet the hope of salvation. 1 Thessalonians 5:5-8

As a reminder, John 12:46 reads, "I have come as a light into the world, that whoever believes in Me should not abide in darkness." Praise Jesus, we don't have to live our lives in the dark! 

Much love - Kristen 

Be sure to download this printable while it's free! 

 

 The scriptures used for this series came from Joyce Meyers download, “Who God Made You To Be”


I am a Spirit Being Alive to God | Day 22 July 23 2015, 0 Comments

In case you missed the announcement about this NEW SERIES | #TruthAboutWhoYouAre take a moment to check out this blog post

#TruthAboutWhoYouAre

This is Day 22 of 48 of the #TruthAboutWhoYouAre series. Thank you so much for joining in on this journey with me. I hope you are inspired over this 7 week series.

It's Kristen Stansell and I will be sharing my thoughts on today's scripture. I'm married, involved in an amazing church, and am the person behind Crafted By. Thank you for being a part of this journey. Photo credit: Rochelle VanSickle

I am a spirit being alive to God - Romans 6:11 and 1 Thessalonians 5:23

Before I share a couple thoughts, I want you to read this passage of scripture from The Message Bible. Let these words sink deep into your heart: 

Could it be any clearer? Our old way of life was nailed to the cross with Christ, a decisive end to that sin-miserable life—no longer at sin’s every beck and call! What we believe is this: If we get included in Christ’s sin-conquering death, we also get included in his life-saving resurrection. We know that when Jesus was raised from the dead it was a signal of the end of death-as-the-end. Never again will death have the last word. When Jesus died, he took sin down with him, but alive he brings God down to us. From now on, think of it this way: Sin speaks a dead language that means nothing to you; God speaks your mother tongue, and you hang on every word. You are dead to sin and alive to God. That’s what Jesus did. Romans 6:11-14

There was a time where just like this scripture, I was at sin's beck and call. You know how people will say, "I have her wrapped around my finger" - it's not a kind term but rather demeaning. I was that girl... and I was wrapped around the enemy's finger. The things that I "shouldn't have wanted" I wanted, I desired, and then I went after them. All of which could have nearly taken me out.

I grew up in an amazing home with Godly principles and learned so much from my church that I was practically raised in. I had a good understanding of what is right and what is wrong. As I got older, it drove me crazy that I knew what was the right choice but I literally felt like I was being pulled in the direction of what was wrong. I remember feeling like I was in a pit that I couldn't get out of on my own. I also felt like I just kept digging a rut and going in circles. Basically, I felt like I was at the bottom looking up at the rest of the world and like my life was going no where but in circles. Sin had a grip on me. 

I had just about enough of the misery one night. I had gotten myself into a mess of trouble and was so in need of a Savior. I was driving home way too late at night on my way from a bar - or somewhere I shouldn't be - I can't even remember now - and I cried out to God with everything in me begging Him to do something to change the course of my life. I surrendered my life to Him and I asked for forgiveness. I came to Him, mess and all, and from that day forward something began to shift. All the pieces didn't fall into place perfectly but within one month I was in church consistently, with brand new amazing friends, and a new direction for my life. I was no longer in a pit or a rut but instead I was moving forward in all that God was and is calling me to be. 

I think it is important to remember that we are all in need of a Savior daily, hourly, really... by the minute. Even if we have been save a gazillion years we are still susceptible to being lured astray by our own desires. Which is why it is important to remember that as believers we need to go to Christ daily and receive His mercy and grace. Know that if you have surrendered your life to Christ you are alive in Him and the power of sin has no hold on you. I would like to encourage you to read the scripture again below and just be reminded of the words.

Could it be any clearer? Our old way of life was nailed to the cross with Christ, a decisive end to that sin-miserable life—no longer at sin’s every beck and call! What we believe is this: If we get included in Christ’s sin-conquering death, we also get included in his life-saving resurrection. We know that when Jesus was raised from the dead it was a signal of the end of death-as-the-end. Never again will death have the last word. When Jesus died, he took sin down with him, but alive he brings God down to us. From now on, think of it this way: Sin speaks a dead language that means nothing to you; God speaks your mother tongue, and you hang on every word. You are dead to sin and alive to God. That’s what Jesus did. Romans 6:11-14

1 Thessalonians 5:23-24

May God himself, the God who makes everything holy and whole, make you holy and whole, put you together—spirit, soul, and body—and keep you fit for the coming of our Master, Jesus Christ. The One who called you is completely dependable. If he said it, he’ll do it!

Much love - Kristen 

Be sure to download this printable while it's free! 

 The scriptures used for this series came from Joyce Meyers download, “Who God Made You To Be”


I am a New Creation | Day 21 July 21 2015, 0 Comments

In case you missed the announcement about this NEW SERIES | #TruthAboutWhoYouAre take a moment to check out this blog post

#TruthAboutWhoYouAre

This is Day 21 of 48 of the #TruthAboutWhoYouAre series. Thank you so much for joining in on this journey with me. I hope you are inspired over this 7 week series.

I would like to introduce to you my friend Rosanna Delurgio. She is competitive swimmer turned writer, business and nutrition coach through Advocare, and young adults leader at her church C3. Follow her journey at competingwithpurpose.com, Facebook: Competing With Purpose, and Instagram: @competingwithpurpose

 

How often does our identity get clouded by what has happened in the past?  We use past events as predictors of the future because in our limited thinking that is what we know.  God is reminding us in this verse to take our expectation and our thinking to a new level.  When we are in Christ, as his followers, we can release the past.  It is like a hand already gripping something, there is no more room to receive what is being offered.  By releasing the past we let go of what once was to make room to receive the increase and abundance God has for us in the future.  If he can forgive you and erase your sins of the past, the least you can do is let them go.  Your future is too big and carries too much impact for you to be hindered and weighed down by what is past.  God is calling each of us to claim our newness that is in Him. It is a fresh start we can claim every morning so we can bring our very best to the challenges and opportunities He brings us now. Like a pair of new clothes can give you new confidence, put on your newness of identity daily and walk confident that God has placed you in this time and place for a reason.  You have everything it takes!

Below is the scripture that goes along with today's #TruthAbouWhoYouAre Enjoy this printable while it's free! 

 

The scriptures used for this series came from Joyce Meyers download, “Who God Made You To Be”


I am God's Workmanship | Day 20 July 21 2015, 0 Comments

In case you missed the announcement about this NEW SERIES | #TruthAboutWhoYouAre take a moment to check out this blog post

#TruthAboutWhoYouAre

This is Day 20 of 48 of the #TruthAboutWhoYouAre series. Thank you so much for joining in on this journey with me. I hope you are inspired over this 7 week series.

Today’s post is written by someone I have known for decades and absolutely love! Her name is Meghan Robinson  Her and her husband @careyrobinsonoc are my pastors at @theocmovement. She's one of the most passionate people I know and I am so excited to share her thoughts on today's verse. Follow along in her journey and inspiring posts via Instagram: @divapastor 

I am God’s workmanship, created in Christ unto good works - Ephesians 2:10

This is one of my favorite scriptures. A reminder that everyone of us needs, over and over again! We are God’s workmanship! Pause…..right there…… WOW! You, me, we are perfectly crafted and chosen by God; a piece of His art!

 

This alone is enough to write about, to pause and think on! You and I are the handiwork of God. His masterpiece! Yet, how often do we criticize and question ourselves? Our criticisms and doubts are nothing but a slap in the face to a brilliant designer who had a plan before we took a breath. He fashioned you exactly as you are with a purpose.

 

The problem comes when we begin to compare one work of art to another. Comparison is always the root of all inferiority! When you compare yourself to another….in looks, personality, talent… you will always fall short. God did not make you to be them, he made you to be YOU! So do it...be the absolute BEST version of YOU that you can be!

 

Now as you begin to walk in confidence in the YOU that you were created to be….remember it’s not just about YOU! God is always working in us so that He can work through us. He fashioned you with a purpose to do great things that were prepared in advance for you to do.

So how do you identify what that is?

 

  1. What are you passionate about?
  2. What are you good at?
  3. How can you take those two things and use them to affect the kingdom of God?
  4. Ask a leader in your life what they see you being great at and how you can begin putting your gifts and passions into action.
  5. Do something! (It’s not enough to come to a realization that God was intentional in designing you. It’s time to live intentionally! It is always easier to steer a car that is in motion rather than standing still. So just start somewhere and allow God to direct your path!)

 

For we are God's [own] handiwork (His workmanship), recreated in Christ Jesus, [born anew] that we may do those good works which God predestined (planned beforehand) for us [taking paths which He prepared ahead of time], that we should walk in them [living the good life which He prearranged and made ready for us to live].

 

You were made for this!

xoxo

Meghan

Be sure to download this Crafted By Printable while it's free!  

 

The scriptures used for this series came from Joyce Meyers download, “Who God Made You To Be”


I am God’s Child | Day 19 July 19 2015, 0 Comments

In case you missed the announcement about this NEW SERIES | #TruthAboutWhoYouAre take a moment to check out this blog post

#TruthAboutWhoYouAre

This is Day 19 of 48 of the #TruthAboutWhoYouAre series. Thank you so much for joining in on this journey with me. I hope you are inspired over this 7 week series.

I am excited to introduce to you Laura (aka Girly) Gordy. She is a friend of mine, a wife, a mom and a pastor at my church, The OC Movement. She is passionate about helping people experience freedom which is why I think it is amazing she chose to write about today's scripture. I hope you enjoy and can learn something new from her words.  

I am God’s child for I am born again of the incorruptible seed of the Word of God, which lives and abides forever - 1 Peter 1:23

“Mom, how are babies born?” - says my 3 year old son, Tyler, while standing up naked in the bathtub.  

O.M.G. THIS. IS. IT.

I’m panicking, and thinking this is my moment to be a brilliant parent and articulate the complexities of producing life in a way that will both be easily understood and hopefully, not scar him for years to come.  But, while I am gearing up for what I am expecting to be a riveting explanation that should, without a doubt, be recorded for parents everywhere to imitate, my son asks a follow-up: “like, do they just explode out of their mommies tummies like this?” [Insert whatever silly boy gestures your mind can conjure up.]  

L.O.L.

So, as it turns out my son was only concerned with the actual logistics of the baby’s arrival.  I hang up my intellectual parenting hat and think, no big deal, I can handle this: “No honey, they come out this direction.”  Pointing down. Done, crisis averted.  Nope.

“Like…… out their butt?”

Now, looking back on this moment, I should have said: “Something like that!” but, NOOOOO, what did I say?  I hang my head in shame to admit that I said,

“No… Girls have special holes for that.”  

What. In. The. World?!?!?! There goes my Parenting Award!  Barely slipped through my fingers there….

By the grace of God, that answer seemed to completely put his mind at ease and Tyler did not probe me further or there’s no telling what else would surely have come out of my mouth!   While thankfully I didn't have to explain the conception process to my 3 year old then, it matters for us today.  God created everything with the natural progression of seed to fullness of potential.  Tyler literally has the DNA of his father and myself, and given the careful parenting and prayerful years of raising him, he has the potential to rock this world with his double portion of stubborn and thoughtful, leadership!

God’s spiritual progression works the same way:

I am God’s child for I am born again of the incorruptible seed of the Word of God, which lives and abides forever. - 1 Peter 1:23

From the moment you decided to surrender your life to Christ, God’s DNA came rushing into you, carrying the life and nature of God within it.  And just like a peach seed has the potential to create an exponential amount of peaches, this God-seed has the potential change an exponential amount of lives.  You truly are God’s child, with God’s incorruptible seed living in you. That’s my favorite part: incorruptible! There is nothing you have ever done, and nothing you could ever do that could squash the God - potential in you that could grow from nursing a tiny little seed into life!  

Its time to hold your head up high knowing that you are God’s child with his DNA, and the full knowledge that there is a God-seed with God-potential in you.  My challenge to you today: GROW IT!  Focus on whatever growth stage your God-potential is in and daily do what it takes to grow it.  If you’re unsure what that looks like for you, I encourage you to stop what you're doing right now and text a Christ-centered leader in your life to ask!  You are God’s child, with a unique purpose and plan for your life.  Buckle in, this is going to be one exciting, potential-fulfilling life.  I, for one, can’t wait!

Lord, help me to realize the DNA that you have put inside me, that little piece of you that fills me with potential to live a huge, God-filled, life!  Help me to grow the seed you put inside me into the fullness of Your potential.

Be sure to download this printable while it's free! 

 

The scriptures used for this series came from Joyce Meyers download, “Who God Made You To Be”


I am Called Out of the Darkness | Day 18 July 18 2015, 0 Comments

In case you missed the announcement about this NEW SERIES | #TruthAboutWhoYouAre take a moment to check out this blog post

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This is Day 18 of 48 of the #TruthAboutWhoYouAre series. Thank you so much for joining in on this journey with me. I hope you are inspired over this 7 week series.

It's Kristen Stansell and I will be sharing my thoughts on today's scripture. I'm married, involved in an amazing church, and am the person behind Crafted By. Thank you for being a part of this journey. Photo credit: Rochelle VanSickle

I show forth the praises of God Who has called me out of darkness into His marvelous light - 1 Peter 2:9 

Isn't it true that when we "love" something we  want to tell everyone? We try a new restaurant and we naturally want to tell people how good it is and that "you have to go!"

Even though I grew up in a Christian home and went to church most my life, sharing Jesus with others was beyond intimidating. It felt as as akward as trying to sell pies to my neighbors so I could go to church camp. I never knew the words to say, would fumble over scripture, and my best reason for telling someone they should know Jesus was, "because you just should". I thought that in order to tell people about Jesus, I had to know all the facts. If I knew all the facts in the Bible then I would know exactly what to say when someone would try to raise an argument about my faith. Which would them leave them wanting to give their life to Jesus... The reality is that that is not the best method nor is it what the Bible instructs us to do.

I was taught a few years ago that "facts tell and stories sell." I think it can be the same with sharing our faith. I can try as hard as I want to know all the details in the Bible but I will never be able to fully comprehend ALL of it and share ALL of it successfully to someone else. But what I CAN do is share how I once was lost - I was living my life with little to no purpose. I was depressed. I was severely anorexic. I drank too much. Partied too much and felt awful about who I was. I was in a dark place and couldn't see any light up ahead. And then... someone told me how God had changed their life and invited me to church. From there, I began to see the light again and I witness God's grace change me from the inside out. I went from nothing to something. Rejected to accepted. Feeling unloved to feeling completely loved by my Heavenly Father. 

I love how The Message version explains 1 Peter 2:9-10

1 Peter 2:9-10 But you are the ones chosen by God, chosen for the high calling of priestly work, chosen to be a holy people, God’s instruments to do his work and speak out for him, to tell others of the night-and-day difference he made for you—from nothing to something, from rejected to accepted.

If you have given your life to Jesus, you have a story of hope and it is worth telling to others. You might have a similar story to mine or something very different but either way you have a story. My prayer is that we would all be brave enough to speak up about what God has done in our lives. We are surrounded by people who are searching for hope and the truth. We can be the voice of hope that makes all the difference in a persons life. 

Much love - Kristen 

Be sure to download this printable while it's free! 

 

The scriptures used for this series came from Joyce Meyers download, “Who God Made You To Be”


I can do all things through Christ Jesus | Day 17 July 17 2015, 0 Comments

In case you missed the announcement about this NEW SERIES | #TruthAboutWhoYouAre take a moment to check out this blog post

#TruthAboutWhoYouAre

This is Day 17 of 48 of the #TruthAboutWhoYouAre series. Thank you so much for joining in on this journey with me. I hope you are inspired over this 7 week series.


Today's post is written by a beautiful friend named Brittany Baker. She is a church-planter in Salt Lake City with her best friends, check it out at  www.antiochslc.com She is madly in love with Jesus, JR @jrbaker13, family and slightly overweight animals. Be sure to follow along in her journey via Instagram: @mrsjrbaker

 

 

I can do all things through Christ Jesus (Philippians 4:13)

Philippians 4:13 is one of the first verses I ever memorized. It had a catchy song that went with it, it rhymed, it was basically a five year olds dream. I remember being in awe of this verse when I was younger. It made me feel like a super-hero. Do you remember being so small that it was a guaranteed hernia if you tried to lift a gallon of milk? We knew our smallness as children, and I think that is one reason these words were so powerful to me. I recognized that there had to be something supernatural going on. I, the scared-of-the dark thumb sucker, had a Father that wanted to do powerful things through me. As I neared adulthood and big girl jobs, I started learning about these things called “bootstraps”, and that you had to pull yourself up by them. Basically, I learned how to perform for God. Philippians 4:13 somehow took on a different meaning. It read something like, “I have permission to do whatever I want, because the Spirit of God lives inside me and I have all the power. I do most the work, make a way for myself and then God comes in and does the rest.” Religion started to twist this verse in me. God became my bow tier; the very last step. He could be involved or not along the way. Does this scenario ring any bells for anyone? I started to forget my smallness.  Saying “yes” to everything because it was my right to have it all and do it all. I puffed out my chest, pulled myself up by my own bootstraps and operated in my own strength.  And I got tired…really, really, really tired. Because we like to be in control, that kind of dependence on one’s self can feel oddly comforting, but it is not sustainable. The word “through” in this verse means we place ourselves wholly within the limits of a limitless God. The enemy wants us to toil. But in this verse, the Savior offers us rest. Today, remember your smallness, rest inside the sustainable power of his character and out of that place conquer what HE has set before you. Praying that God highlights the places you no longer need to toil and gives you courage for the places you were made for. The Holy Spirit gave me a picture of each of you with backpacks, like you were going on a long hike. Each of you were on different trails. Some of you were taking a few things out of your backpacks and some of you were putting a few things in. I'm asking God to speak about what is in your "daily bread" backpack. That it would be filled with everything you need for your unique journey and that all the extra weight would be left behind. So honored to be a part of this! Hope this familiar verse comes alive in a new way for each of you like it did for me. Bless you! -Brittany

Be sure to download this printable while it's free! 

The scriptures used for this series came from Joyce Meyers download, “Who God Made You To Be”


I have the Shield of Faith | Day 16 July 16 2015, 0 Comments

In case you missed the announcement about this NEW SERIES | #TruthAboutWhoYouAre take a moment to check out this blog post

#TruthAboutWhoYouAre

This is Day 16 of 48 of the #TruthAboutWhoYouAre series. Thank you so much for joining in on this journey with me. I hope you are inspired over this 7 week series.

If you are walking through a storm right now or know someone that is, take the time to read this post written by my dear friend Shayna Lane. She’s one of the many amazing friends I have gained since being a part of The OC Movement. She is passionate about telling stories through film, and plays a little jig here and there. Coffee, the ocean, and movies are a must.

I can quench all the fiery darts of the wicked one with my shield of faith (Ephesians 6:16)

I’m a huge Hunger Games fan, so I like to pretend I’m an expert on all things involving bows and arrows (in reality, I couldn’t shoot an arrow to save my life, but I promise in my mind I’m awesome at it!)  One thing I do know, though, is arrows can quite easily pierce vital organs and are strategically designed to take out their target.
The evil one is constantly trying to take us out to prevent us from fulfilling God’s purpose for our lives. And isn’t it just like him to target the vital areas that hurt the most? That unexpected bill comes in when you were already struggling just to put food on the table. That fight with your husband leaves you both shattered and on the edge of walking away from your marriage. The doctor diagnosis takes your breath away and instantly instills fear into your heart… Attacks will come, because God intricately designed each of us with great purpose and destiny and that terrifies the enemy. 
But praise God that we can walk in confidence knowing those attacks wont take us out! 
It’s by faith that we pick up our shield to protect us from the storms of life that come. Choosing faith isn't always easy, and I know I've given in to doubt, discouragement, and despair in the past. But our faith is not in our own strength and ability to change circumstances; rather, it's faith in God's faithfulness. It’s in knowing that the One who calls us as His own is greater than the evil one that is in the world. We pick up our shield of faith by standing on the promises of God’s Word, trusting in Him and claiming His truth regardless of what our situation might look like. 
One of my favorite scriptures to hold on to is Romans 8:28And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose.”
What difficulties are you walking through today? What struggle feels like it might take you out? No matter what you’re facing, take heart and know that God loves you, is on your side and is greater than any arrows the enemy might shoot your way. Let’s pick up our shield of faith, believing that God is who he says he is, God can do what he says he can do, we are who God says we are, and we can do all things through Christ.
If God is for us, who can be against us?
Luke 1:45 - “Blessed is she who has believed that the Lord would fulfill his promises to her!”
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The scriptures used for this series came from Joyce Meyers download, “Who God Made You To Be”


I have no Lack | Day 15 July 15 2015, 0 Comments

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#TruthAboutWhoYouAre

This is Day 15 of 48 of the #TruthAboutWhoYouAre series. Thank you so much for joining in on this journey with me. I hope you are inspired over this 7 week series.


Today's post is written by one of my friends, Jordan Upton. Wife, stay at home mom to two kids. Mom by day, crafter by night! Love of coffee & flea markets! She's also the one that has helped me photograph some recent Crafted By prints and some that I haven't shared yet!

 

 

 

I have no lack for my God supplies all of my need according to His riches in glory by Christ Jesus - Philippians 4:19

I remember writing out my monthly budget
$750 rent
$225 daycare
Which left me $200 for all of my bills, groceries, gas, diapers and just surviving. This season of life was hard, I was 22 years old and a single mom who had just moved out on her own with a 2 year old! I was working a full time job and barely making ends up. I remember thinking "I don't know how I'm going to do this, this means I can't even pay for gas to get to work!" But then I came to realize that I wasn't going to "do it"... HE was! Those first few months after I moved out I was blessed in more ways than just financial blessings. People gave me furniture for my home, groceries were dropped at my door step, clothes were handed down. God never disappeared through all of that. He continued to show himself and show me His love. Not once did I ever have to pay a bill late or need a thing because he continued to provide for me in ways that I can't even fathom! I never doubted HIM, from day one I decided to trust in Him and really stand on his promise to supply and take care of me because I am HIS Daughter! 
As believers we will have seasons in our life and even our faith where we will not know how to push forward but we have to stand firm on his word and know that he will provide. We have to pick up that promise and claim it! Believe it! He will bring peace to your broken heart, security to your finances, love and kindness to your relationships. 
I just want to encourage you if you find yourself in a place of need then seek him and meditate on His word! He is waiting with open arms to reach out and help you right where you are. 
Just Iike it says in Phillipans 4:19 I have no lack for my God supplies ALL my need according to His riches in Glory by Christ Jesus! 
I also love the message version, it says "God will take care of everything you need!" 
Be encouraged and know that He will take care of you! 

 

Be sure to download this printable while it's free! 

 

The scriptures used for this series came from Joyce Meyers download, “Who God Made You To Be”


I have Given and it has been Given to me | Day 14 July 14 2015, 0 Comments

In case you missed the announcement about this NEW SERIES | #TruthAboutWhoYouAre take a moment to check out this blog post

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This is Day 14 of 48 of the #TruthAboutWhoYouAre series. Thank you so much for joining in on this journey with me. I hope you are inspired over this 7 week series.

Today's post is written by my beautiful mom. She's an amazing woman - has been married for over 40 years to my dad. I am so thankful for the wisdom she has to offer and hope this touches your life! Follow her along in her journey on Instagram: @janicekmoore

I have given, and it is given to me; good measure, pressed down, shaken together, and running over, men give into my bosom - Luke 6:38

I love fireworks! This past 4th of July we had the most amazing, up close view of the explosions of color. Ava, our almost 7 year old granddaughter, was snuggled in my lap as we watched the beautiful display in the sky form a canopy above us. I told her that each firework is so different; kind of like snowflakes. She responded, “They are like people, too. Some people say two look alike, but their attitudes make them so different.” What a profound statement and how obviously observant our sweet girl is of the people around her. Attitude starts with the heart.

This conversation made me think of the scripture for today, Luke 6:38. I’m sure most Christians have only heard this scripture used during a giving message. Yes, God loves when we give and He also loves to bless us, but He is most interested in the heart behind the giving. It’s not about “getting” when you give. It’s about the motive behind the giving. Not only is Jesus talking about giving of our finances in this passage, but He is teaching us a life principle of giving. Luke 6:35-38 in The Message Bible says it best.

“I tell you, love your enemies. Help and give without expecting a return. You’ll never -I promise- regret it. Live out this God-created identity the way our Father lives toward us, generously and graciously, even when we’re at our worst. Our Father is kind; you be kind. Don’t pick on people, jump on their failures, criticize their faults-unless, of course, you want the same treatment. Don’t condemn those who are down; that hardness can boomerang. Be easy on people; you’ll find life a lot easier. Give away your life; you’ll find life given back, but not merely give back – give back with bonus and blessing. Giving, not getting, is the way. Generosity begets generosity.” Luke 6:35-38

There was a time in my life when I would read this passage, but would still justify my thoughts and actions toward others. I would often question myself wondering where these attitudes began.  Matthew 15:18 says “But what comes out of the mouth gets it start in the heart.” I had to allow God to work on my heart by choosing each day to be happy (yes, it takes a daily effort!), looking for God’s goodness in the craziest of circumstances, being grateful for even the smallest of things and finding good in others. Through the peaks of life and the lowest of low valleys, I have come to a place where I am so humbled before Him and grateful for all that He has done for me and my family. There have been so many life lessons along the journey about loving others, forgiving, being merciful and holding back judgment. There is freedom in choosing to embrace others even when they are so different. Jesus didn’t turn his back on the people who were not like Him; he loved them into their full potential. So, “I have given and it has been given to me; good measure; pressed down, shaken together and running over!”

Be sure to download this printable while it's free! 

 

The scriptures used for this series came from Joyce Meyers download, “Who God Made You To Be”


I am a New Creation | Day 13 July 13 2015, 0 Comments

In case you missed the announcement about this NEW SERIES | #TruthAboutWhoYouAre take a moment to check out this blog post

#TruthAboutWhoYouAre

This is Day 13 of 48 of the #TruthAboutWhoYouAre series. Thank you so much for joining in on this journey with me. I hope you are inspired over this 7 week series.

Today’s post is written by someone I have known for decades and absolutely love! Her name is Meghan Robinson  Her and her husband @careyrobinsonoc are my pastors at @theocmovement. She's one of the most passionate people I know and I am so excited to share her thoughts on today's verse. Follow along in her journey and inspiring posts via Instagram: @divapastor 

I have put off the old man and have put on the new man, which is renewed in the knowledge after the image of Him Who created me - Colossians 3:9-10

I love fashion! I enjoy watching and reading about the latest trends and styles. I’ve also learned that there are some styles that do not look good on me….and to be honest, don’t look great on anyone! :)

This scripture in Colossians 3:9-10 talks about putting off “the old man” and putting on “the new man.” It sounds a lot like changing outfits. There are some “styles” that should definitely get tossed out when I become a Christ follower. The great news is, we have a guide.

Colossians 3:5-10 instructs us with the style we must purge from our closets. It is not an appropriate reflection of our new life….and let’s be honest, it doesn’t look good on anyone!

“Put to death therefore what is earthly in you: sexual immorality, impurity, passion, evil desire, and covetousness, which is idolatry. On account of these the wrath of God is coming. In these you too once walked, when you were living in them. But now you must put them all away: anger, wrath, malice, slander, and obscene talk from your mouth. Do not lie to one another, seeing that you have put off the old self with its practices and have put on the new self, which is being renewed in knowledge after the image of its creator.”

The great news is, the scripture gives us great insight into what this new life is supposed to look like!

Colossians 3:12-14 (MSG)

“So, chosen by God for this new life of love, dress in the wardrobe God picked out for you: compassion, kindness, humility, quiet strength, discipline. Be even-tempered, content with second place, quick to forgive an offense. Forgive as quickly and completely as the Master forgave you. And regardless of what else you put on, wear love. It’s your basic, all-purpose garment. Never be without it.”

Each one of the qualities mentioned in this passage express themselves in relationships. A significant measure of our Christian life is found simply in how we treat people and the quality of our relationships with them. As we work to become more and more like Christ, our lives should reflect His Image. This is the kind of fashion that never goes out of style!


Be sure to download this printable while it's free! 

Photo Credit: Jordan Upton

The scriptures used for this series came from Joyce Meyers download, “Who God Made You To Be”


I have Received the Power of the Holy Spirit | Day 12 July 13 2015, 0 Comments

In case you missed the announcement about this NEW SERIES | #TruthAboutWhoYouAre take a moment to check out this blog post

#TruthAboutWhoYouAre

This is Day 12 of 48 of the #TruthAboutWhoYouAre series. Thank you so much for joining in on this journey with me. I hope you are inspired over this 7 week series.

I am excited to introduce to you Laura (aka Girly) Gordy. She is a friend of mine, a wife, a mom and a pastor at my church, The OC Movement. She is passionate about helping people experience freedom which is why I think it is amazing she chose to write about today's scripture. I hope you enjoy and can learn something new from her words.  

Every single day that I add to my life, I become more aware of my obscurity.  I realize just a little more how big this world is, and how much more there is that I simply don’t know.  Ultimately, I understand anew each day how tiny and insignificant I feel in this great big world.  This, the world tells us, is maturity; to grow in the understanding of just how powerless you are, peacefully come to terms with it and say “Namaste” in response. Or….

I have received the power of the Holy Spirit to lay hands on the sick and see them recover, to cast out demons, to speak with new tongues. I have power over all the power of the enemy, and nothing shall by any means harm me.

- Mark 16:17-18; Luke 10:17-19

THIS. This flies in the face of the world’s view of our relationship with life itself.  The word of God has carefully and painstakingly explained how being tiny and insignificant WILL NOT BE MY STORY.  I have the power to write my story.  I don't have to stand by in acceptance when my kids are sick.  I don’t have to stand by in silence when I am clearly taking fire from the very real Enemy of this world.  “I have received the power of the Holy Spirit” means it has already been given to me, I simply need to access it through prayer, through my steadfast and intentional words, and by remembering who I am when the world beats into me that I am small and insignificant.  I can do this because the word of God says that NOTHING will harm me.  

I may only be a speck of dust in comparison with the vastness of this world but this speck of dust has power and authority over sickness, power and authority over anything the enemy has to throw at me and most importantly freedom from a small and insignificant life.

 

Be sure to download this printable while it's free! 

 

The scriptures used for this series came from Joyce Meyers download, “Who God Made You To Be”


I have Received the Spirit of Wisdom | Day 11 July 11 2015, 0 Comments

In case you missed the announcement about this NEW SERIES | #TruthAboutWhoYouAre take a moment to check out this blog post

#TruthAboutWhoYouAre

This is Day 11 of 48 of the #TruthAboutWhoYouAre series. Thank you so much for joining in on this journey with me. I hope you are inspired over this 7 week series.

Today’s post is written by someone I have known for decades and absolutely love! Her name is Meghan Robinson  Her and her husband @careyrobinsonoc are my pastors at @theocmovement. She's one of the most passionate people I know and I am so excited to share her thoughts on today's verse. Follow along in her journey and inspiring posts via Instagram: @divapastor


 

I have received the spirit of wisdom and revelation in the knowledge of Jesus, the eyes of my understanding being enlightened - Ephesians 1:17-18

Have you ever felt confused? Have you ever questioned why or wrestled with what steps to take? Have you ever wondered where God is in those answers?

I think every one of us has found ourselves in this place. Crying out for understanding, clarity, direction.

This scripture in Ephesians 1:17-18 reminds us that understanding, clarity, and direction stem directly from the author and giver of our lives, Jesus Christ. It is a prayer for you and me that we might know Jesus fully and in him, discover all we need. This is a process and without immediate results. I think we would prefer that someone just tell us plainly what to do or give us a direct and clear answer to our nagging questions. But God, in his infinite ways, desires our complete reliance and trust in him. He longs for our daily communion with him. He reminds us that He is enough for us.

I love how the message version puts it;

"I ask—ask the God of our Master, Jesus Christ, the God of glory—to make you intelligent and discerning in knowing him personally, your eyes focused and clear, so that you can see exactly what it is he is calling you to do, grasp the immensity of this glorious way of life he has for his followers, oh, the utter extravagance of his work in us who trust him—endless energy, boundless strength!”

When we develop a close, personal relationship with Christ; we see differently. Proximity has a great effect on us. The closer we become to someone the more we think like, act like and become like them. The same applies to our relationship with Christ.

As we declare this promise of wisdom, revelation and understanding over our lives, let us commit to fix our eyes on Jesus. Make it a priority to spend time with him each day. Ask him those nagging questions and rehearse your trust that He has the answers. I love the scripture in Proverbs 3:5 that says "trust in the Lord with all your heart, lean not on your understanding...in all  your ways, acknowledge Him and He will direct your path."

And while you are leaning in, trusting, growing in understanding and aligning your path with His, He will give you endless energy and strength for the process!

Be sure to download this printable while it's free! 

 

The scriptures used for this series came from Joyce Meyers download, “Who God Made You To Be”


I have Received the Gift of Righteousness | Day 10 July 11 2015, 0 Comments

In case you missed the announcement about this NEW SERIES | #TruthAboutWhoYouAre take a moment to check out this blog post

#TruthAboutWhoYouAre

This is Day 10 of 48 of the #TruthAboutWhoYouAre series. Thank you so much for joining in on this journey with me. I hope you are inspired over this 7 week series.

I would like to introduce to you my friend Rosanna Delurgio. She is competitive swimmer turned writer, business and nutrition coach through Advocare, and young adults leader at her church C3. Follow her journey at competingwithpurpose.com, Facebook: Competing With Purpose, and Instagram: @competingwithpurpose

 

I have received the gift of righteousness and reign as a king in life by Jesus Christ. - Romans 5:17

 

 

 

When we become Christians we are given the gift of righteousness. This puts us in the position of royalty by the sacrifice of Jesus on the cross. That means in the eyes of God we are seen as equals with Christ.  Just as Jesus is seen as a king, to God we too are kings (or queens for you ladies).  That means we are no longer slaves, but heirs.  Heirs to the kingdom of heaven.  

I used to think being a Christian meant I was a slave to God.  I had to do whatever God told me or else! I lived in a place always feeling at risk of losing God's good graces.  
As this verse shows that is not our identity.  But what does it mean to be an heir to the kingdom of heaven?  We carry authority.  Not by what we have done, but merely the position we carry when we are reborn into his family.  By accepting Jesus as our savior we are placed beside Him in heaven.  That means the same power He carries, we carry here on earth.  The best way I can describe this is to think about what authority you carried in your home growing up.  What was your parents was yours. You did not ask if you could sleep in your bed, if you could eat the food in the fridge or use the property they had, you did it because that was your position in the family.  The same holds true of your heavenly father.  He has already given you all the resources you need to live an abundant life.  Will you not only recognize the gift of your righteousness but take it and put it to use? That is your position, use it!

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Be sure to download this printable while it's free! 

 

The scriptures used for this series came from Joyce Meyers download, “Who God Made You To Be”


I have the Greater One living in me | Day 9 July 10 2015, 0 Comments

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This is Day 9 of 48 of the #TruthAboutWhoYouAre series. Thank you so much for joining in on this journey with me. I hope you are inspired over this 7 week series.

It's Kristen Stansell here and I will be sharing my thoughts on today's scripture! If you struggle with anytime of fear then this is for you - this scripture has helped me face some things in life that are bigger than me because it is a reminder that who lives inside of me is greater than the one that lives in the world. Photo credit: Rochelle VanSickle

I have the Greater One living in me; greater is He Who is in me than he who is in the world. 1 John 4:4

The very first weekend after getting married 2 years ago, my husband went out of town. I was sleeping alone in a new place for the first time. I should have been fine because for most my twenties I lived on my own. But I wasn't okay. At every noise, I froze. I dozed off on the couch late one night to wake up to what sounded like a person rummaging through the bushes. Afraid, I grabbed a knife from the kitchen (true story) and hid in my closet and didn't move while I waited over 30 minutes for my parents to come over and make sure all was clear. The "rummaging in the bushes" turned out to be the sprinkler system. It's all kind of humiliating now that I think about it - but at the time my fear was so great and I let it dictate my actions. 

In the moment that fear is roaring in our face it feels real as if it's going to devour us. Right? Did you know that "Do not fear" is mentioned 365 times in the Bible? Then why is it that we still become afraid? We become afraid when we magnify the challenge that is starring us in the face. When we focus more on the problem than on the One who overcomes all problems we become afraid. When we given in to fear we become paralyzed and unable to move forward. Fear is debilitating and keeps us living a small life confined to our safe zone. The good news is that we don't have to allow fear to dictate the course of our life. The key to taking a stand against fear is knowing the truth about who you are straight from the Bible. 

I have the Greater One living in me; greater is He Who is in me than he who is in the world. 1 John 4:4

When we surrender our lives to Christ we invite the Greater One to live inside of us. That means that whatever we are facing we can take on full force. Not with our own strength but with the strength of the One who lives inside of us. I love the scripture below as a depiction of who God is - as you read it, know that if you have given your life to Christ, then this is who is living inside of you. 

“Blessed are you, O Lord, the God of Israel our father, forever and ever. Yours, O Lord, is the greatness and the power and the glory and the victory and the majesty, for all that is in the heavens and in the earth is yours. Yours is the kingdom, O Lord, and you are exalted as head above all. 12 Both riches and honor come from you, and you rule over all.In your hand are power and might, and in your hand it is to make great and to give strength to all. 1 Chronicles 29:10-12

We have the Greater One living inside of us - because of this we are victorious. We are powerful. We are enough, because He is enough. 

Whether you are afraid to step out and make new friends, afraid of rejection, the dark, not having enough money, getting married, making the wrong decision, moving forward, taking a leap of faith - know that you have the Greater One inside of you. You can look fear in the face and know that the one who is on your side is Greater. 

Here are some additional verses that have helped me in fight fear:

What then shall we say to these things? If God is for us, who can be against us? Romans 8:31

God is within her, she will not fall; God will help her at break of day. Psalms 46:5

I lift up my eyes to the hills.
    From where does my help come?
My help comes from the Lord,
    who made heaven and earth.

He will not let your foot be moved;
    he who keeps you will not slumber.
Behold, he who keeps Israel
    will neither slumber nor sleep.

The Lord is your keeper;
    the Lord is your shade on your right hand.
The sun shall not strike you by day,
    nor the moon by night.

The Lord will keep you from all evil;
    he will keep your life.
The Lord will keep
    your going out and your coming in
    from this time forth and forevermore. 

Psalm 121

He who dwells in the shelter of the Most High will abide in the shadow of the Almighty. I will say to the LORD, “My refuge and my fortress, my God, in whom I trust.” Psalm 91:1-2

Because you have made the LORD your dwelling place— the Most High, who is my refuge—no evil shall be allowed to befall you, no plague come near your tent. For he will command his angels concerning you to guard you in all your ways. On their hands they will bear you up, lest you strike your foot against a stone. You will tread on the lion and the adder; the young lion and the serpent you will trample underfoot.

Psalm 91:9-13

Do you not know that you are God’s temple and that God’s Spirit dwells in you? If anyone destroys God’s temple, God will destroy him. For God’s temple is holy, and you are that temple. 1 Corinthians 3:16-27

I have said these things to you, that in me you may have peace. In the world you will have tribulation. But take heart; I have overcome the world.” John 16:33

 

Be sure to download this printable while it's free! 

 

The scriptures used for this series came from Joyce Meyers download, “Who God Made You To Be”


I have the peace of God | Day 8 July 08 2015, 0 Comments

In case you missed the announcement about this NEW SERIES | #TruthAboutWhoYouAre take a moment to check out this blog post

#TruthAboutWhoYouAre

This is Day 8 of 48 of the #TruthAboutWhoYouAre series. Thank you so much for joining in on this journey with me. I hope you are inspired over this 7 week series.

Today’s post is written by someone I have known for decades and absolutely love! Her name is Meghan Robinson  Her and her husband @careyrobinsonoc are my pastors at @theocmovement. She's one of the most passionate people I know and I am so excited to share her thoughts on today's verse. Follow along in her journey and inspiring posts via Instagram: @divapastor


I have the peace of God that passes all understanding - Philippians 4:7

The promise of peace. This is a promise I need to remember almost everyday of my life. How about you? I love that this scripture is prefaced with a direction. In verse 6 we are told; "Be anxious about nothing and pray about everything." What does this mean? Whatever you might be facing on any given day, week, month or year....do not allow a worried and anxious heart to set in. Rather, pray. This act of prayer is actually an act of releasing the burden and weight of worry into God's capable hands. The scripture says, "AND THEN the peace of God that passes all understanding will guard your hearts and minds in Christ Jesus." It is a promise that follows our action.

The peace of God is truly beyond our power of thinking. It is unexplainable. It defies logic and overpowers fear. This peace of God is available to you and to me. Our only responsibility is recognize when worry and fear begin to dominate our thoughts and then to take it to God in prayer. The scripture also says "prayer with thanksgiving." The thanksgiving part just keeps us from whining, which we are all tempted to do! Then something powerful begins to happen. The circumstances may not change, but an unexplainable peace begins to invade your soul and mind. In fact, the scripture describes it like a military action. The peace of God set's itself up like a guard around your heart and mind. It opposes worry, anxiety and fear and allows us to rest in complete confidence in God's goodness and faithfulness.

Whatever you might be facing today. The peace of God that surpasses understanding is available to you. Would you be brave enough to take that situation, unspoken fear or overwhelming pressure to God in prayer? Focus with thanksgiving on His faithfulness and ask Him for what you need. What follows is the promise of peace so sweet from a God who is so good and already working on your behalf!

Be sure to download this printable while it's free! 

 

The scriptures used for this series came from Joyce Meyers download, “Who God Made You To Be”


I have the mind of Christ | Day 7 July 07 2015, 0 Comments

In case you missed the announcement about this NEW SERIES | #TruthAboutWhoYouAre take a moment to check out this blog post

#TruthAboutWhoYouAre

This is Day 7 of 48 of the #TruthAboutWhoYouAre series. Thank you so much for joining in on this journey with me. I hope you are inspired over this 7 week series.

Today's post is written by one of my beautiful friends Bre Ogles @breogles she's a pastor at the OC Movement & passionate about helping people discover their purpose. I love her heart & am excited to share her words! Be sure to follow her journey on Instagram: @breogles

I have the mind of Christ (1 Corinthians 2:16; Philippians 2:5).

Not too long ago I was diagnosed with a mental illness and this verse has been of great comfort and challenge to me personally. It would be easy for me to relinquish all control or responsibility of my thoughts over to “my illness” but this verse reminds me that I have the mind of Christ. In other words, my mind is whole, complete, and lacking nothing. So what do you do when what the world says about you contradicts what the word of God says about you?

For me, I stand in faith knowing that I am complete in Him. I don’t stress over wondering what is wrong with me or why this has happened to me, instead I focus on the the fact that everything I lack is found in Him. In His presence, in His love, in His grace and in His word. I find peace knowing that His power is made perfect in my weakness (2 Corinthians 12:9) and therefore I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me (Philippians 4:13). 

Be sure to download this printable while it's free! 

 

The scriptures used for this series came from Joyce Meyers download, “Who God Made You To Be”


I am Holy | Day 6 July 06 2015, 0 Comments

In case you missed the announcement about this NEW SERIES | #TruthAboutWhoYouAre take a moment to check out this blog post

#TruthAboutWhoYouAre

This is Day 6 of 48 of the #TruthAboutWhoYouAre series. Thank you so much for joining in on this journey with me. I hope you are inspired over this 7 week series.  

 

Today's post is written by one of my very dear friends who I am so incredibly grateful for. "I love things I can see & believe in things I can't. My calling is to serve, my joy in life is creating and my passion is the marriage of the two graphics & cakes" - Crystal Sadler  (And did I mention she has the best dogFollow her along on her journey on Instagram: @sadlerck 

 

I am holy and without blame before Him in love - Ephesians 1:4

As a woman I usually spend much time and attention to the details of getting ready.  It’s not the shaving of my legs, hair straightening or even application of eyeliner that takes me so long, but the staring at the options of “what to wear” that holds me up every time.  My husband doesn’t understand why it’s so difficult as he comments regularly, “ Can’t you think about what you will wear while getting ready, you are a multitasker, right?” What he doesn’t understand is that I can “think” about it, but until I try those jeans on with that pair of shoes and depending on how I am “feeling” I just can’t decide.  Before you judge me as vain or if you are one of those woman that just doesn’t have to think about these things “I secretly envy you” please hear me out.

As women we understand this concept of being outfitted/dressed for the occasion. Isaiah 61:10 says: I will sing for joy in God, explode in praise from deep in my soul!  He dressed me up with the clothing of salvation and outfitted me in a robe of righteousness.  My best efforts to look “put together” or to do my very best for the Lord ends up meaningless. Christ’s efforts and what He has already done for you and me makes us holy and blameless. Even before he made the world, God loved us and chose us in Christ to be holy and without fault in his eyes Ephesians 1:4 NLT  We are blameless and without fault in Christ.  The emphasis here is, in Christ!  Webster defines blameless as this: innocent of wrongdoing, guiltless, in the clear, perfect, virtuous, faultless, and above reproach. In our sin we are not worthy to come before the throne of God in all its glory, but with the robes of salvation and righteousness from Christ we are. It is as though God himself put on a pair of Ray Bans and what He sees through them is not us in our faults, failures and mess of sin, but a covering of his perfect blameless and Holy Son. What a beautiful garment we are given.

Sisters you are blameless in Christ! You are clothed with salvation and righteousness. You make the “best dressed” list no matter how you are feeling.  Like the “perfect outfit” you are covered and holy before God in love.  I plead with you to recite this and know it in your heart.  The devil is a liar and will try to convince you that you are not accepted by your Father God, but you are, you are more than accepted, you are loved and not by your own efforts, but by what Christ has already done for you, what he has covered us in, the most beautiful of garments. Lets make it our effort to truly know that Christ is our whole ensemble and not just the accessory that goes with some of our life’s choices.


Be sure to download this printable while it's free! 

 

The scriptures used for this series came from Joyce Meyers download, “Who God Made You To Be”


I am Born of God | Day 5 July 05 2015, 0 Comments

In case you missed the announcement about this NEW SERIES | #TruthAboutWhoYouAre take a moment to check out this blog post

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I am born of God and the evil one does not touch me - 1 John 5:18

This is Day 5 of 48 of the #TruthAboutWhoYouAre series. In case we have never met, I am Kristen Stansell and I will be sharing today's devotional. I am a believer, a wife, a creative in Orange County, serve at The OC Movement church, and run Crafted By. Thank you so much for joining in on this journey with me. I hope you are inspired over this 7 week series. 

Just a few minutes ago, I watched as the Women's USA soccer team took the victory and became world champions. After watching the pre-game interviews and watching USA win this game, I've got to say soccer is growing on me. Halfway through the game Team USA had already taken the lead by quite a bit and it was pretty evident that they would take home the World Cup. Regardless of them being ahead, they continued to fight for their victory. 

As believers, it is important to know that whatever fight you are currently up against you have already been deemed victorious. There was a season of my life after I had surrendered my life to Christ that I had "fallen" into sin. And by "fallen" I mean I put myself in a situation that lead to nowhere good. It didn't just happen once but over and over again. I felt like I was completely trapped and unable to get freed from this bondage of sin.

The truth is that when we are temped to do something that we know is not right God always gives us an escape route. (1 Corinthians 10:13) For me, it began with me just saying, "Jesus help me." There is power in the name of Jesus and He is just ready and waiting for you to call on Him. Secondly, we have to know that we are victorious. Yes, we might be in the middle of a fight getting knocked off our feet, bruised and bloody but regardless we are victorious. Jesus paid the price to give us freedom. Know you are victorious, you are free, and you are protected by God. If you are struggling, begin speaking the truth and knowing that Christ strength lives in you. You've got this. Just keep fighting forward. 

We know that whoever is born of God does not sin; but he who has been born of God keeps himself, and the wicked one does not touch him. 1 John 5:18

No temptation has overtaken you that is not common to man. God is faithful, and he will not let you be tempted beyond your ability, but with the temptation he will also provide the way of escape, that you may be able to endure it. 1 Corinthians 10:13 

Little children, you are from God and have overcome them, for he who is in you is greater than he who is in the world. 1 John 4:4

Be sure to download this printable while it's free! 

 

The scriptures used for this series came from Joyce Meyers download, “Who God Made You To Be”


I am far from oppression | Day 4 July 05 2015, 0 Comments

In case you missed the announcement about this NEW SERIES | #TruthAboutWhoYouAre take a moment to check out this blog post

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I am far from oppression and fear does not come near me. (Isaiah 54:14)

This is Day 4 of 48 of the #TruthAboutWhoYouAre series. Today's post is written by my beautiful mom. She's an amazing woman - has been married for over 40 years to my dad. I am so thankful for the wisdom she has to offer and hope this touches your life! Follow her along in her journey on Instagram: @janicekmoore

Earlier in life the unknown and the “what ifs” would create overwhelming fear in me. I would feel as though I was being taken captive and held behind an inescapable train of thoughts – one leading to another. Fear is often described as being the opposite of faith, but it is actually the opposite of sight. If only I could see the outcomes or know that everything would work out then I wouldn’t be fearful. There were many nights that I would find myself awake unable to sleep. Many sleepless nights my sweet and patient husband would wake up in the middle of the night, wrap his arms around me, and pray.

Merriam-Webster defines oppression as “unjust or cruel exercise of authority or power.” With each negative “what if” thought I allowed the enemy to grip me with fear. Fear paralyzes us and keeps us from using the authority given to us by Jesus to bring peace to our thought life. It was in my 30s that I decided that my thoughts had to change. 1 Timothy 1:7-8 says, “For God did not give us a spirit of fear, but of power, of love and a sound mind.” Moment by moment, day by day I began changing my thoughts. How? I would purposely stop negative, fearful thoughts then find something, anything to focus on that was good and count the blessings that God had brought my way.

For years I taught 4 and 5 year olds a theory that I made up called “ker plunk.” Using a spiral wishing well, coins were dropped in the top of the funnel. They would spin round and round slowly spinning their way to the very bottom until each one dropped in. I would relate the motion of the coins to our thoughts. Negative thoughts such as how your husband makes a mess, a friend wounded you, the news of a jet crash spin round and round in our minds. As we dwell on those fearful or angry thoughts they eventually drop into our hearts. Then out of the abundance of our heart the mouth speaks. I truly believe that the words we speak pave our future. Think about the thoughts you have had today. Have you spoken life and encouragement to those around you - especially to yourself? Meditate on God’s Word today and stand strong in the authority given to you by Christ Jesus!

Be sure to download this printable while it's free! 

 

The scriptures used for this series came from Joyce Meyers download, “Who God Made You To Be”


I am Free | Day 3 July 03 2015, 0 Comments

In case you missed the announcement about this NEW SERIES | #TruthAboutWhoYouAre take a moment to check out this blog post

#TruthAboutWhoYouAre

This is Day 3 of 48 of the #TruthAboutWhoYouAre series. Thank you so much for joining in on this journey with me. I hope you are inspired over this 7 week series.  


Today’s post is written by someone I have known for most my life & I absolutely love! Her name is Meghan Robinson @divapastor Her and her husband @careyrobinsonoc are my pastors at @theocmovement. She's one of the most passionate people I know and I am so excited to share her thoughts on today's verse. Be sure to follow along in her journey and inspiring posts on Instagram: @divapastor  

I am free from the law of sin and death Romans 8:2

I am a serious over-packer! I mean, I do not travel light! When my husband and I go on a trip, we are prepared for everything. Typically when we arrive at a hotel and unload the car, I proceed to pick up some of my luggage to help carry it all inside. My "southern gentleman" of a husband firmly objects and insists that he will carry our bags. He piles his arms high with suitcases and carry-on's while gripping the hanging clothes with his teeth! All while I walk into the hotel like a celebrity, unencumbered by any baggage....completely free from the weight of what is actually mine!

Similarly, when we make a decision to follow Jesus, the scripture tells us that He sets us free from the law of sin and death. (Romans 8:2) What does this mean? Every one of us has a past full of the baggage of poor choices. We have a sin nature that compels us to pick up those bags again and assume the weight of those decisions whether in action or in shame.

Jesus paid the price for our sin and essentially "picked up our baggage" that we might walk free from sin and unencumbered by our past. So often, we are tempted to argue....but that's mine and we attempt to wrestle our "baggage" out of God's hands and take the weight back upon our shoulders. How ridiculous we must look. John 8:36 reminds us "whom the son sets free is free indeed." Jesus paid it all, that you and I might walk in freedom!

Remember today that your past does not define your future. Jesus paid the price for your sins both yesterday and today. This means that you no longer need to carry the weight of sin upon your shoulders and when the temptation comes to pick up another "bag" you can confidently overcome that temptation because of Christ who lives in you and has set you free from the law of sin and death!

Be sure to download this printable while it's free! 

 

The scriptures used for this series came from Joyce Meyers download, “Who God Made You To Be”


I am Alive with Christ | Day 2 July 02 2015, 0 Comments

In case you missed the announcement about this NEW SERIES | #TruthAboutWhoYouAre take a moment to check out this blog post. In case we have never met, I am Kristen Stansell and I will be sharing today's devotional. I am a believer, a wife, a creative in Orange County, serve at The OC Movement church, and run Crafted By. Thank you so much for joining in on this journey with me. I hope you are inspired over this 7 week series. 

#TruthAboutWhoYouAre

I am alive with Christ 

But God, being rich in mercy, because of the great love with which he loved us,  even when we were dead in our trespasses, made us alive together with Christ—by grace you have been saved— Ephesians 2:4-5

Can I just say that I am so thankful for the grace of God. I can try as hard as I want to do the right things but it is just not possible to live a life free from sin. There are times that I think I am starting to get the hang of things and then I am reminded of my need for a savior. I am so thankful that my security in my relationship with God is not dependent on my perfection but rather on his unfailing love for me.

There was a season in my life that I was not living my life for God at all. Deep down, I knew there was more to life. I wanted to break free from patterns and habits that were leading me no where but wasn’t sure how. I tried and tried to change but I was simply stuck.

The point that began to change everything was when I cried out to God and asked for help. I recognized my need for a savior and that I couldn’t make the changes on my own. I needed to be changed from the inside out. I didn’t experience an overnight transformation although from that moment I was never the same.

Remember that no matter what decisions you have made you can be seconds away from receiving God’s grace. Just simply ask. Christ didn’t wait for us to choose Him to love us - He loved us knowing that we might not ever reciprocate. He gave all of Himself so that we can experience life. He loves you. He loves you. He loves you. 

Be sure to download this printable while it's free! 

 

The scriptures used for this series came from Joyce Meyers download, “Who God Made You To Be”