Tag Archives: jesus

The Voice 

The Voice

 

I recently spoke at a Women’s event with the theme, “The Voice”. The idea obviously stemmed from the popular TV show. If you’ve ever watched it, the contestant comes out singing. As they sing, the judge’s backs are turned towards the singer. They sit waiting, not seeing, just waiting for something to grab their attention enough to make them push their button. Someone pointed out to me that after the button is pushed and the judge is facing the singer, a light comes on at the bottom of the chair stating, “I want you”.

 

I can’t imagine what goes through the singer’s mind moments before they perform. There must be so many unknowns, doubts, even the question of being good enough or not? They have to swallow all that and move forward with their performance. They have to find the strength to give it everything they have because they only have 45 seconds to entice the ear of at least one judge. 

 

  • I think this idea of the voice is so applicable in our lives. If we were honest, we all face the voices of defeat and failure at times. Some more so than others! I remember when I first started hearing these voices myself. I was in the 7th grade and I was extremely ill; I had spent the year in and out of hospitals, visited several doctors who could not figure out what was going on with me. My mom wouldn’t give up though; even as a few doctors suggested that maybe I just wanted attention. I’m thankful for the instinct God gives moms, when something isn’t right with their kids, they know!

 

She searched constantly to find a specialist for me. Finally we found the doctor who would save my life. He was at Children’s Hospital in San Diego. By the time I got to him, I was at my sickest. After seeing him, I found myself (the next day), having an eleven-hour operation. They had to rebuild my stomach in order to save my life. I woke up with a feeding tube out my side and a nine-inch scar down my stomach. Instantly, I went from being me, to being me in a flawed state.

 

As I lay in the hospital bed, I would see my exposed stomach with clear tape over the wound. They had to keep it open in the event of any complications. I remember in the countless hours I was in that bed, I would begin to hear the voices that, to this day, I battle with. The ones that say, “You’re flawed, you’re scarred, you’re ugly.” It would be those voices that would help to brew some of the greatest lies and insecurities I would face about myself in life.

 

I think it was a deep issue for me because it was coupled with the wounds of the abuse I faced as a child and being abandoned by my father. I had a loving mom taking good care of me, but when one parent leaves, a child still feels like it was their fault. I was shy, quiet and insecure and now, I bore physical scars to match the emotional scars. I have met so many people who have been in bondage to the same lies. Who, basically, believe the lies about themselves, and can’t see beyond them.

 

As a speaker, youth leader and minister of the gospel, I can share the beautiful truths of God’s word about worth, value and love, on platforms far and wide. I believe those truths to the core for those I counsel with…I know in the depths of my soul that it is truth. I don’t for one second doubt God’s plan in the lives of others. I watch it lived out in and through them all the time. Truth be told though, I often don’t believe it for myself. I look at myself from the perspective of a wounded, timid little girl, thinking, “It couldn’t be true for flawed me.”

 

I’m sharing this not because I want attention, or for people to feel sorry for me. I’m sharing it because I know that if this is true in my own life, there must be so many who are privately battling the same thing. I want to have a willingness to be transparent with you; it’s so important! People admire those who are given public platforms, thinking they have it all together. I want to honestly share today, that we don’t. We battle the same voices as others do, maybe even more than most. That’s just being real! Someone dear to me shared, “Spiritual warfare is not easy, that’s why it’s called warfare.” I believe the goal of the enemy is to take those voices and cause defeat. So often we are ashamed of our struggles and we keep them tucked away in the closet, yet every time the door is opened, there the lies wait. We need to clean house, clean out those closets and fill them with truth.

 

This isn’t always an easy thing to do. I will tell you this though, if you don’t do it, the lies will not just affect you, but will affect the most valued and treasured relationships you have. You will look at each person in your life through the veil of those lies, placing the lies on others and ultimately, that will impact those relationships. I wonder how many relationships have been forever defeated by this very thing. It’s not fair to you or me to be in bondage to them. They have done enough damage in and to you!

 

I have learned that the only way I can silence the lies of defeat, is by the truth of God’s word, coupled with prayer. God’s Word is not truth for others only; it is truth for you. He loves you, He does have a plan for you and He desires to see you soar in Him, nothing else! My prayer through everything I have faced is that the Lord would use it for His good and glory. That He would bring purpose to the pain and healing to the broken. Only He can mend us! I have been coming to terms with this and felt a desperate need to share it with whoever is reading this.

 

I want to remind you that the truest voice came to you and I, hitting the “button”, before coming out of our mother’s womb. Christ looks at you and me saying, “I want you, and I chose you.” The things that have happened to us, in us and through us were never meant to harm us, but to bring light in and share it  with the darkness of others. I never believed I would find someone who would love me with scars. Yet the Lord one day quietly asked me, “Do you not love Me because of my scars?” The answer was, “Of course not. When I think about you Lord, I don’t even think of Your scars! If I were to though, they only make me love you more, I know they were for me.” God said, “I’ve called your husband to love you with a love that is pure. He will see past your scars and will love you in beauty and truth. God wants to hush the insecurities that keep us from moving forward. I think sometimes it’s so hard for us to let them go, because we become comfortable with them. We hold them close and dear because we have given them a home in us. We forget the wonderful feeling we get after the hard work of cleaning house. When clean, we find ourselves enjoying our homes again. God wants to strip us of the lies at home in us, to make us at home in Him. 

 

How many unnecessary tears have you cried because of the voice of lies? Let’s not cry anymore. Let’s soak up the Word of God and surrender those lies to Him. He wants them, He died to take them! Let the truth of the Son set you and me free today! I love you and am praying for everyone who reads this and can relate.

 


How Can I Leave Them?

Leaving my family after the holidays is always a difficult time for me. This time seems to be the hardest yet though. There is so much uncertainty, sickness and trial at home. Everyone seems to be going through a struggle or major sickness.

When I’m home, I try my best to divide my time equally with everyone, bringing love and support, that, often they go without because I live so far away. I spend time praying and encouraging them, helping however I can with the needs they have. We laugh, cry and hug. We sit talking for what seems like hours, catching up and sharing about life. This time is always so fulfilling for me. I enjoy it to the core!

I moved to Kauai 13 years ago. Thirteen years, wow! Before I moved, I felt the tug many of us have felt, the tug to go and make a difference. I knew there was a great need on Kauai, but I didn’t know the ministry God had in store for me there. Leaving home was hard at the time, but I counted the cost; serving God was what I said yes to. There have been days during those years that definitely were hard and lonely, but God has always shown himself faithful and got me through them.

On this trip, I felt so burdened, so heavy, almost as if I couldn’t spend enough time with them. To protect their privacy, I won’t go into detail of their personal trials, but for some, the future seems bleak. I guess on this trip, I have been reminded of the value of life. Our days are never promised to us, and numbered by God, only He knows how many we have.

When you live far from home, there is such a greater meaning to the word family. There is nothing sweeter than a hug from a family
Member. A hug from someone who has known you their entire life, and they are still willing to hug you. Haha, I’m sure some miss the beauty of what I’m talking about.

As I sit in the airport writing this, I find myself wanting to fix things for everyone. I want to solve all their problems and take away all their pain. It’s easy to want to carry the burden for them. As I thought this, I felt the whisper, “you’re not meant to carry the burden, I Am.” This is what Jesus came to do, to carry the burden; to make light the heaviest of moments with the peace that only He can give.

Philippians 4:6
Don’t worry about anything; instead, pray about everything. Tell God what you need, and thank him for all he has done.

I won’t for one second say this is easy to do, it isn’t. It’s the hardest lesson one might ever learn in life. I make myself sick with worry sometimes. When stress is upon me, I can’t get it out of my head. It literally consumes me. I’m a big baby at times, I’ll cry and cry and cry because I can’t change a situation that is stressful in my life. After all the tears, God, in all His grace, doesn’t give up on me, out of frustration of my stupidity or lack of faith. Nope, in a sense he gives that loving touch of a mom, who tucks the hair behind your ear, and whispers, “it’s gonna be ok, it’s always going to be ok.” Within a week of my life seeming as if it’s over, I find myself living out this peace; I’m relieved over whatever I was facing and it truly is all ok.

I want you to know that God doesn’t waist the things we face in this life. He is with you and I believe with all my heart that we go through trying,’hard times to bring us to a better understanding of our Lord. In them, we understand His beauty, love and nurture. He shows us that even though we can’t, He can.

The Lord delights in those He loves. He loves you and I so much. Even in the turmoil of life, He holds you. He is with you and He will never leave you. Never!! My challenge for you (and myself) is that in this New Year, when you receive bad news, are fighting cancer, struggling to pay the bills, battling addiction, or frustrated with life, that you take a moment to write down 7 times God showed himself faithful in your life. Then pray, thank Him for His faithfulness and trust Him with your uncertainty. Cling and feel Him lift you up. I may be far from my family, but my God is very near to them! I can trust them to Him. Love you all.

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