Thursday, December 29, 2011

God's Reassuring Word

      An amazing creator is the only explanation behind this wonderful world that we all have been blessed with.  All around me I experience changes that I am a part of; changes that not only change the world, but change me.  When I feel alone, the one and only God is there to pick me back up again.  There are definitely no orphans of God; there are, under every circumstance, no loners in God's eyes.  Even though I stray away from what matters most, God helps me reset my eyes to see the light that comes from Him, the light that gives us a new beginning, a new person within our hearts.  We take for granted what some people can't even come close to having.  We often pass by the opportunities we get to praise the Lord and share His word with others.  Through God, you could make a difference in someone else's life, so take every chance you get to share His message!

      There are so many things that a single person is faced with on a daily basis that they might find themselves questioning who to turn to.  That answer is an answer that gives reassurance to all; it provides love for everyone in discouragement.  Overall, that answer assembles a brave, inspiring person who ministers care to their fellow neighbors.  The answer of who to turn to in the midst of despair is God.  The awareness that God supplies us is unique to us all but similar in various ways.  He understands our every problem, every injury, and our every last word.  He builds up our hearts to an incredible since of love and care.  Again and again we seek the problem of holding on to things that won't matter in the future and don't even matter in the present time.  We can't see the big pictures that seem to exclaim that all we need is God.  All we have always needed is GOD.  All we will ever need, out of everyone, out of all times, through every accident is God.



Wednesday, December 28, 2011

You Are Everything


God, You are my everything.  You are my hope when times are blue, You stabilize me to be brave, You lead me towards the right decision, and You watch over everything I do!  God, You are so much better than the most meaningful words can describe.  When everything seems to have died, You are still alive..You will always be alive.  You are still my heart in my darkest hour.  God, You are all I want, and, most certainly, all I need!  You have created me for who I am, and I still keep growing with Your love.  You gave hopeless a brand new meaning of courage when You died on the cross to save our sins.  You are...indescribable...because You are so amazing!

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God,

You mean so much to me.  I am so happy that You led me to You.  Although I do struggle in this relationship with You, I would be completely broken without it.  You will always be everything good to me.  No matter how many times I may get off track and lose sight of You, You always bring me back to what matters...You and Your unconditional love.  I love You, Lord!  I am so blessed to have a God as faithful as You in my life!  Please lead us to reach out in the community around us, no matter what the circumstances are.  Courage is in You, and You are always with us, so we are always able to have courage to do the unimaginable.

In Your love,
Allie

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There are so many times that I forget to thank God for simply my faith.  Without my faith, I wouldn't be thanking God for anything.  God is everything, so don't forget to thank Him for always being there to catch you when you stumble.  Even though we may leave God, He has never left us.  He will always be everything we could ever imagine.  If you are searching, then turn around and discover that He has been there all along.

*Inspired by the song:  "Everything Good" by Ashes Remain


Thursday, December 22, 2011

Not Easy, but Worth It!

Life isn't always easy.  There is one quote that I am reminded of when I face challenges that might temporarily knock me off my feet: "I didn't say it would be easy, but I said it would be worth it," (anonymous).  To me, life isn't about picture perfect snapshots and planning ahead all the time.  Sometimes, I find myself having to face the unexpected that life throws at me.  Like the quote says, life won't always be easy, but when I face the problem that knocked me down in the first place, I feel accomplished!  

I know we all have trouble being thankful when life throws us a curve ball, but without those struggles, I wouldn't be the person I am today.  Now I'm not saying that I'm perfect or anything, but I have learned so much about what life has to offer if you just accept the opportunities.  Yes, sometimes the opportunities aren't all what they seem; meaning that not everything is going to work out in your benefit.  Although when you look back at your life, you are going to regret the chances you didn't take much rather then the ones you did.  I find it bothersome to not know what the end of the tunnel looks like..kind of like declining a good opportunity.  

If you take a minute to examine the word "opportunity", what does it mean to you??  Do you think of things you did do or things you didn't do?  Better yet, do you think of the possibilities still left to come?  When I think of that word, I think of everything that life has in store for me.  I think of the place I will be in ten years, the job I will someday be working, or the family I might get to have.  Although, I do want to live in the present, it's nice to think about what is awaiting.

My point through mentioning all of this stuff is this: God already knows what our lives look like.  He knows everything about us.  Isn't is so cool that there is this God who cares enough to know how many hairs we have on our head?  Even though I can't see Him, I have a relationship with Him that lets me know He is always there.  Anyway, life couldn't be more interesting.  Through good and bad, I just have to accept it all.  As much as I wish for a picture perfect life, I think I have realized that we don't learn anything if we are perfect.  Imperfection teaches us to be strong when things don't go like we want them.  It teaches me to be thankful.

I am thankful for life's unfortunate troubles because it teaches me things I might not learn anywhere else.  Most of all, life's troubling events teach me, personally, to thank God through good and bad.  Even though it is easier said than done, when you actually get to thank God through the bad, you know that God was there through it all, even if you did leave him for a while.  In conclusion, I am not perfect, and I will never be perfect, but God lets me be the amazing person that He really sees me as when I accept life's little mishaps.

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

A Similar Purpose

Everyday is given certain challenges that we must overcome.  Tasks are placed in our lives that seem challenging to us but easily fearful to others; meaning that we could see things one way as others might have a completely different view.  That is why being mindful of other people is a good quality to have.  Day by day you see people struggle, but do you ever stop to help them?  Even if they are complete strangers, helping other people is what God has called us to do in every moment of our lives.  Whether it is convenient for us or not, that is how service works.  Service is not when it fits into our lives but when it is crucially needed by other people.  We go through our lives mysteriously trying to figure out what our purpose is.  As we sometimes run into challenges that temporarily stop us, we learn to overcome them with the gifts we are given by God.  Certainly we as people cannon instantly foresee everything that is thrown at us, but we can seek the light that God puts in our path to overpower different struggles that may appear within our time frame.  All in all, the ways that we come to help other people are the ways other people think of us.  To put that in different terms, as much as you help other people, the more they are going to look up to you and count on you for various situations.  It is a wonderful thing that people can look up to you and understand the service you can provide.  More and more with all service hours you carry on, people are going to think of you as dependable and respectful.  Even though the mission for our lives is unique to us all, these service hours are something that remains similar in everyone's mission.  To carry out something from this summary, God created our missions differently according to who we are, but the service that is called upon by other people is something that is equally important to us all.

Sunday, December 11, 2011

Passing Judgement

Think before you look at someone and create a name for them.  Don't just look at their clothes, their smile, or their path, but look at their hearts, and see what is real.

Those who judge others are only making a name for themselves.

It doesn't matter that everyone is different: do you expect everyone to be the same?  There may be someone who is really hard to deal with, but that "someone" may be waiting for a person to deal with them.  They didn't become insecure on their own - someone created that title for them.  It isn't fair that people have the ability to look at someone by their outside appearance.  Although it does teach of God's unconditional love, it seems unjust to automatically jump to conclusions about a person.

 A true heart looks at a person through their success, not their imperfections.  We all make mistakes.  That is a fact.  If we all looked at each other by seeing only failures, then we would all have pain inside of us.  I am sure that we all know what it feels like to be judged, so why would we want to create those feelings for someone else?

Judgement is something that has always owned a heavy weight on my heart.  Ever since I became a believer, I have been very sentimental about judging people.  Once I was saved, I finally understood that God loves me for ME!  I couldn't imagine being on the other side of things...where no one accepted me.  Not only would it hurt the person being judged, but it would hurt me to know that I scarred them in a way that takes strength to forget.

A lot of times, judgement comes out of jealousy.  Those who are able to look away from judgement can move forward and gain strength.  Those who are stuck in the trap of judging people are standing in a pit of quicksand and are beginning to sink.  Most people grow envy of each other by things, success, or public feelings, such as happiness.   It doesn't matter if the person will never find out that you judged them; it matters that you did it to begin with.  If you are committed to prevent judgement, then you will most likely stay out of that trouble.

Don't pass judgement...no matter what the circumstances are.  If God loves us so abundantly, then we must owe others nothing less.  Before you judge someone, put yourself in their life; then see how it would feel to be judged.

Sunday, December 4, 2011

Let It Shine

"You are the light of the world.  A city on a hill cannot be hidden."  Matthew 5:14

Christians have been given the gift of everlasting love.  God doesn't want us to keep it to ourself, but let it shine for all to see.  When believers commit themselves to please only God, people start to notice the transformation of their identity.  Often times, there are people to take the time to realize the acceptance that believers have allowed in their heart.  Through Christians, people get the chance to see God if we let our light shine bright!  God is so good that He allows his love to shine right through our hearts.

I'm sure we all know how the wise-men were led by a star to find Jesus in a manger.  That star guided them to where they should go.  God gave them a star to get them from one place to another.  Just like the wise-men, God sends us things to move us from one point in our lives to the next.  He can send us pain, mercy, grace, forgiveness, or even pure goodness.  All of those examples can probably jog up a memory where God stood right beside you to carry you through the struggles.

After accepting God's grace, a Christian always has the desire to teach others about their experience.  This is one of the hardest things for a believer to grasp.  God uses Christians to be the star for non-believers.  God can use us to move others from one point to the next.  Just like God gives us motivation to keep going, He can also use us to be the motivation for others.  The biggest part of this is to be an example no matter where you are...you never know who is watching.  There shouldn't ever be a time where you feel it is okay to "take a break" from Christianity.  Once you have made that commitment, it lies in your heart forevermore, and you are expected to set the example for those around you.  It doesn't matter how old you are, what environment you are in, or how rich you are.  God loves us all the same which means that he expects equal from us all.  Like I have stated in past blog posts, God gives us a mission that is unique to each person.  The one thing that will always remain the same is that we will glorify God and preach His word in whatever we do.

 My prayer is this:  "I pray that we can all be the guidance that other people need in their faith with Christ.  I pray that we can decide to make a difference instead of sitting on the sidelines with the light of our hearts covered up to be hidden.  Lastly, I pray that we will find the motivation to be a better person...there will always be room for improvement.  So today, ask God to remove our sins and allow us to continue searching for the purpose he put us here for.  Ask God to show us how we can be the guidance that someone else is seeking.  In His name we pray, Amen!

Sunday, November 27, 2011

Colors of Love: Thanksgiving


Thanksgiving was GREAT! It was a time of rest, reunion, and thanks.  I got to see my cousins from Little Rock, Arkansas.  Here are some pictures of their smiling faces and how they are such a great example of God's creation.  All their smiles are different shades of love.








Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Headphones!

  There will always be an obstacle standing in the way to our goals; large or small, thick or thin, they will be there.  A common obstacle for us all is the devil.  He will try to push and pull us in every which way until we decide to fall.  We can't let that happen.  We aren't going to cave in because the devil wants us to.  We are going to keep trying.  Sometimes, there will be non-believers who challenge us to throw away our faith.  Don't let the devil win.  Keep moving forward.  When all of these obstacles just appear before our eyes, we need to put on our headphones.  Let's just put a shield over our ears to keep us from hearing the negative thoughts around us.  When we decide to put on our headphones, God will be spilling into our ears rather than the ugly actions of the devil.  At times, we won't physically be able to protect our ears with headphones.  This is why we learn to have an invisible pair right in our pocket.  If we train ourselves to only focus on the positive and avoid the people who try and tear us down, then we will be able to withdraw from any misleading schemes.  People will try and shoot you down with cold, bitter words, but when we use our headphones to block them out, then we won't have to worry about competing to get the higher stand.  The bigger person is the person who follows God.  God would not want us to compete with our bitter, self-leading words.  God wants us to be the Christians that he is forming us to be.  He wants us to be strong by ignoring the devil and escaping from the challenge of competing with anyone who might pick a fight.  Let's all accept the challenge to put on our headphones and ignore the misleading paths around us.

Friday, November 18, 2011

Comfort in Your Weakness

This is my first post for "Colors of Love."  It is a photo series about God's wondrous miracles all around us.  Colors of love resembles all of the different areas and shades of God's love through the things he has created on Earth.  This first week is about comfort in our weakness.  When we feel like backing out because the fight is weak, we give up on quitting and persevere on winning.  When we do this, God shines through our hearts by showing others the radiant gifts he has established in our identity.  The gifts that God gives us obtain a part of us and are something special and something to be accepted.  It is not in our desire to wish them away but to embrace them and live them out.  When your heart is stuck in a low place because of a weakness or hardship, just remember this verse:  "That is why, for Christ's sake, I delight in weaknesses, in insults, in hardships, in persecutions, in difficulties.  For when I am weak, then I am strong.
-2 Corinthians 12:10."





Sunday, November 13, 2011

Oh, Remind Me!

  All I have ever wanted to be is a writer.  I enjoy finding the perfect words to use when writing a paragraph.  I enjoy searching through old pieces of writing, whether a blog post, a saved file on my computer, or a printed out copy of work that I had completed during school, and remembering where my heart was when I wrote those pieces.  Most of all, I enjoy the freedom in the ability of being yourself when you write.  Through my words, I am only myself.  When I lose track of my life's position, I pull out an old blog post, and God reminds me who I am.  God reminds me that I have a talent.  I am developing my faith each and every day, and my writing is just another way for me to inch even closer to God.  So when I do fall behind and lack motivation, a simple blog post is all I need to remind me of God's purpose for my life.  I don't know where I will be years from now, but I do know that God will use me to make a difference in others' lives.  That is all I have ever wanted to do.  I caught a glimpse of what that feels like just the other day.  I got to share my steps of faith with one of my distant friends.  She told me this:  "Allie, that is an amazing story.  You just changed my life.  You have inspired me more to do everything through Him."  Do you know how good that felt?  Imagine doing that as an occupation.  Imagine becoming a writer and touching people through your words every day!  I can only hope for the day when I am a professional, inspirational writer signing copies of my books and watching it touch the hearts of my readers.  I am counting down the moments...just waiting for God to show me my mission.

Saturday, November 12, 2011

A Bigger Picture

  Do you know the days when you are so focused on yourself that you can't seem to find the true meaning of happiness?  Well, have you ever thought that there is a whole world out there besides yourself?  Maybe you are going through the motions of life and completely missing the big picture...God.  Before I accepted Jesus into my heart, this was my life.  I didn't know that I could live in a way where everyone could see the light in my heart.  I was so focused on myself that I couldn't see anyone else in this world.  I am going to share my journey of faith with all of you who want to listen.

   I was living for myself and myself only.  I did know that there was a God and I "said" that he was living in my heart, even though he really wasn't.  I was one of those people who went around being someone I wasn't.  I got caught up in life and only cared about popularity and how other people looked at me.  Then, the summer of my 13th birthday is when my life was changed forever.  I went on a summer trip with Hope Church, and I truly accepted Jesus into my heart.  I finally understood that life was too tough to handle on my own, so I turned all of my worries over to God.  Now, it is as if the whole world is so different than I used to see it.  There are actually people out there who are suffering..really suffering.  Some of those people don't even have God.  I can't imagine how they can get up every morning and go through each and every day living without God.  Now, it is as if I could make a difference in someone else's life and noticing that makes me open my eyes to see something other than myself.  It really changed who I am inside.  I am so glad that I found out what it truly means to be a Christian because it has changed my life forever.  I just realized that life is so much more than hardships and people that try to tear you down.  There is a God out there who loves me for me, and no one could ever take that away from me.  I am new...and I'm finally not just saying it...I am living it, and that is what makes the difference inside.

   So there is a bigger picture.  There are people other than yourself living in this world, too.  When you finally decide to embrace this fact, then you can lead a totally different lifestyle.  You can learn to lead a life where sharing God's message is a priority.  You can learn to live a life where loving someone else is not a big task, no matter who they are or what their past is.  You can learn to live for God..with God.  The moment you recognize that you can be the change in someone else's life is the moment that your eyes begin to open.  That is the beginning of a new start.  The beginning of a life where God is in control.  It is the beginning of a new you....a person who lives with God.

Don't Step Down


Don't back away..don't give up...it all depends on you.  You are the only person that can make that decision for yourself.  Are you going to keep trying, or will you give up?  Whatever it is you want to achieve, don't let it go!  A dream is a dream to be kept..not one to forget.  No matter how many times the world denies you, prove them that their wrong.  Tell them that you can achieve anything you wish.  You can achieve anything you set your heart to.  Of course, you can only do this with God.  God allows us to be the best we can be and do the greatest things in life.  All we have to do, is believe in ourselves and our dream will come true.






Dream BIG!  Photography is one of my many dreams...and I am going to do it to the best of my ability in order to achieve my dream.

Sunday, November 6, 2011

God Is Always By My Side


No matter how many times we feel lonely and scared, God is always by our side!  Joshua 1:9 says, "Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous.  Do not be terrified; do not be discouraged, for the Lord your God will be with you wherever you go."  God wants us to be bold and discover things about ourselves that we didn't even know were possible.  While we are here on this earth, God wants us to find out why we are here, otherwise known as catching sight of our true identity.  He wants us to carry out the purpose that He created us to fulfill.  There will be bumps along the way, but that is what makes us who we truly are.  Learning to be bold during those tough experiences is what teaches us to be so strong through our whole life.  We learn to recognize that God is in control, and He doesn't place anything in our lives that He knows we can't handle.  God will always be there, no matter what.  Let us put our faith in Him and seek the individual purpose that we all have.

Early Morning Fog

At times, fog may appear in our lives, but we just have to put it behind us while we watch God continue to bless us with each new day.  As fog does come up, it will all go away in God's time, and God won't ever put us through something He knows we can't handle.







Thursday, October 27, 2011

Growing Up: Not A Little Girl

My brother, Austin (9) and Allie (me, 13)

 Imagine a little girl....skipping through fields of flowers, learning how to write, discovering her true identity, and uncovering her strong faith, step by step.  I am not a little girl anymore.  I wish I could be young forever. I wish that I will never have to make a life threatening decision.  I wish that I won't ever worry about the next day, afraid of what could be thrown at me.  God tells us to have the faith of a child.  Though we grow on the outside, let our hearts be dedicated to God by having the faith of a child.  Does a child try to please other people by showing off their faith?  I sometimes fall into that trap.  Does a child talk to God with a "grown up language" because they are afraid that God will underestimate their true self?  I don't think so, so why should we?  If we are no longer little children, then we should be able to recognize that God knows we grow up, so why try and prove it to Him?  We are who we are, and no one could ever impact the identity that God has given us.  I am growing up, and everyone around me can tell.  Through my faith, my responsibilities, my decisions, and my overall experiences through the mysteries of life, it is plain to see that I am no longer that little girl in pre-school just waiting for excitement.  I am...who God wants me to be...in the process of carrying out a mission...I am me.

Engage in Life

Have you ever decided to back away from something because you were afraid to fail?  I have done this too many times to count.  My simple solution is to take things head on in order to face your darkest fears, no matter how challenging it might be.  Life can be like a never-ending tunnel.  You don't know what lies ahead of you, but you do know where you are headed.  Basically, you don't know your life story until you have experienced it all; all we know, as Christians, is that we have a home waiting for us in HEAVEN!  Anyway, to back away from life is like hiding in a black hole that can take a while to replenish.  Yes, life is like a large mountain that will take our earthly lifespan to overcome.  When we get to heaven, all of this mountain is turned into a gold pathway to God.  That's what is so amazing about the obstacles of life.  If you never engage in life, then you will never accept the fact that there will be challenges that you will not be able to fully overcome.  Although, if we really and truly have God at the head of our lives, then God will allow you to overcome your fears.  Instead of backing away from the obstacles in your personal journey on this earth, charge them head on to engage in life to the fullest.

Sunday, October 23, 2011

My True Home

    God is always inside of me, but do I always put him first?  I can't revert back to the old way I used to live.  I'm fighting for nothing.  There is no prize within ambition for something other than God's purpose.  I need to keep my heart set on the true love, God.  Take away distractions and live by peace and love, just for God.  Show others his love; show others his strength; share his knowledge.  I belong with God, and I have for all of my life.  I was searching for somewhere of my own, but this is my home.



Just Accept It

We must be willing to let go of the life we have planned for us to accept the life that we have waiting for us.  A girl from my old soccer team posted this on Facebook.  The more I think about it, the more it alarms my mind.  We care so much about things on this earth.  There is so much that we hold onto because we are afraid to lose it.  I have realized that the more we hold onto something, the harder it will be to let go.  There used to be quite a few things that I was afraid to lose.  I grew out of most of those objects and am continuing to learn that God has a place where we can come as we are without being looked at in a funny way, or laughed at because your "out of style."  This place is heaven.  God puts us here on this earth to carry out a purpose unique for everyone. I am not going to spend my time worrying about physical things when I have the hope of heaven to keep me grounded.  "We must be willing to let go of the life we have planned for us to accept the life that we have waiting for us."  If we can let go of these things here on earth, then we can accept the fact that God has a place for us far better than anything on this earth could ever be.  God is my solution to every problem.  I mess up a lot...and I know that, but all I can do is ask for forgiveness and move on.  My life could be different afterwards, but I am not going to hold onto a life that I "once had."  I am going to continue to move forward in God's plan for me because I know that this is what God wants for me to do.  God has a plan.  I am not going to try and change his plan to fit my needs when he knows my needs better than I do. 

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Black and White Wednesday: Nothing but Love

This past summer, I went through a change that has had a major impact on my life.  I am a Christian!  I look at everything in such a different perspective than I used to.  The thing is that I am not just a Christian.  I really mean it from my heart.  I used to say that I was a Christian because I knew that it wasn't good if I wasn't.  Now I have this unfailing love in my heart and I really believe that I am saved.  Nothing but love.  

God is all that I ask for.


My beautiful Bichon!

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A cotton tree that we passed on the way to church tonight.  I HAD to get out and take a picture....yeah I looked like a dork but it was worth it!

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Friday, October 14, 2011

Theme of the Week: Light

  Ruthie and I:  Photo of the week - Light!  Light is an amazing quality of the world.  God has given us light.  He has made us new.  I am so blessed that I can see things so clearly now because of God's light.







Thursday, October 13, 2011

Satisfied!

  One word.  Satisfied.  What does it mean to you?  Content?  Thankful?  Enough?  Those three words, for me, describe the word "satisfied" to the fullest.  Are you satisfied with your life...your decisions...your attitude?  Are you satisfied with yourself?  Be satisfied!  Let your attitude be happy and your choices be right.  Know that God put you here on this Earth for a reason and that YOU have a purpose meant only for you.  Be satisfied with who you are and the way God created you to be.  Trust in God, and He will allow you to be satisfied.

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

A Beautiful Creation From God

             First of all, God has a purpose for us all.  He made you to be someone so, so special.  I know that there are times when we all run to something other than God.  We put our trust in something we shouldn’t to cover up our weakness.  When we feel pain, hurt, or worry, there is a possibility that we aren’t letting God be our guidance.  When you are lost in the middle of life, it seems like you will never find a way out.  We catch ourselves wondering if our lives will ever change.  It seems that so many things on this earth are lost and without hope, but you and me have hope.  This I know.  God allows great things to happen when we least expect them.  He makes beautiful things out of darkness.  God also creates works of art within all of our hearts.  All around us are signs of hope.  There are signs sent from God that continuously tell us to keep persevering.   We have to continue to keep our head up through good and bad.  Out of messed up choices and decisions, chaos arises, but God helps our lives get found again.  Once again, God makes beautiful creations out of us, just as we are.  We don’t have to change for God.  God is pleased with us without the disguise that we sometimes use to avoid problems that interfere with our regular routines of life.  That is what is so glorious about God’s love.   God has made me a new person.  He has showed me that life can be so great if you let it be.  I have found my savior.  God saved me.  He saves me every day from dumb temptations that I am lead to resist.  I am so happy now that God is in my life.  He isn’t just there on Sundays when I go to church, but every day.  When I seek him, he answers me.  When I need him, I can feel him.  Believing is trust without seeing.  You have to believe that God can really save you, and then he will.  He sure did save me from the struggles of the world and the struggles of life.  God is in me.  Let him come in you and allow you to see things more clearly.  Let him lead your life in everything that you do.  Anytime you feel sad or tempted to do something you shouldn’t, pull out this blog post and reread it.  Re-discover the light that comes from God’s wonderful love.  

Works of Art

God has created a work of art within our hearts.  He has also shown his love for us through the things on this earth.  These flowers and plants are His, not ours.  We might have grown them from a seed, but who made that possible? GOD!  Thank you Jesus, for everything, especially the works of art in us and on earth.