Wednesday, October 27, 2010


I've had the weirdest, coolest, most victorious, but defeating, encouraging week. Weird, I know. I've learned that when we journey with such an amazing God and cruel enemy these kind of weeks just happen. But now all is good and I'm feeling pretty victorious at the moment. In all honesty, I wish I had some of those Pentecostal colorful flags to go along with my new Hillsong CD because I'm thinking I could do some pretty amazing interpretive praise dances in my bedroom about right now. =) ...Don't judge me.... (especially all my Baptist folk) =) Anyway...

So for starters, I've actually been doing really well. Here lately I've been majorly taking ground in some issues that I've been determined to overcome for quite some time (e.i, no longer picking my nails, submitting under Mike's leadership, overcoming deep rooted insecurity struggles, reading & growing a lot, etc.) Seriously, these past few weeks have been really amazing.

Then last weekend I started getting in this funk and couldn't get out. All week, I battled feeling so distant from the Lord. It's like I couldn't shake it. I'm so addicted to His presence now that when I don't feel Him close I start going into depression like I've lost my best friend. Then yesterday in my time with the Lord, he revealed what was going on.

Looking back, this past week I really struggled being obedient in the really small things. I realized I hadn't been heeding his voice in the small things that I normally don't battle with (e.i, eating, facebook time, distractions, etc). Then it's as if I felt like if I could do it real fast the Lord didn't notice. For example, I set limits on my social networking time (facebook/researching). So I would be like, "Lord, I'm just going to read this one email" (even though it was supposed to be my reading time)....but then I ended up getting distracted and an hour later realized I had just wasted all my reading time. Or, I'd be getting ready to go somewhere and putting way too much attention towards what I looked like. Therefore I ended up going somewhere more consumed with myself then serving and encouraging those around me....and consequently left feeling yucky inside and battling more insecurity because I went into it with the wrong mindset/expectations. I could go on and on, but it was weird stuff like that ALL WEEK. Nothing "major" of course. The enemy is too sneaky to do something obvious where I might catch on.

So, yesterday in my time with the Lord I started to piece everything together and began to realize what was going on:

If you'll remember, up to this week I had been making major progress and overcoming in some needed areas of my life. I've been so excited and feeling really victorious in my walk with God. As a result, I've been motivated to keep overcoming things in my life, even when it's hard. SO because of this the enemy started freaking out and, I believe, decided to start attacking my momentum. I'll explain.

The Lord reminded me yesterday that every decision I make, big or small, is building momentum either closer to God or further away. You see, success is motivating and inspiring. When we obey and overcome our flesh in the small things it gives us more strength to obey and overcome in the big things; hence probably the reason I started to take ground in the big things of my life because I was really focusing on the "small" things. So now it makes perfect sense while I felt under attack this week and almost started to feel defeated. The enemy was trying to attack my momentum that was moving me closer to the things of God. He knew that if he could get me to fail in enough small things and begin to see myself as a failure, then it'd sap me of the strength and confidence needed to conquer the "bigger" issues in my life right now.

More than anything, I was reminded by the Lord today that it matters what we do, what we say, what we fill out minds with, how we spend our time, what we fill out bodies with, what we dwell on. Everything. The reality is, it's all important because everything we do is either drawing us closer to God or further away. He loves us and wants to lead us to freedom and an abundant life where nothing in our life owns us, but He can't do that if we are ignoring His voice and conviction.

So I encourage you to start building momentum in the right direction by obeying Him even in those "small" things that we all tend to think don't matter. If you mess up along the way, don't worry. He's not there to condemn you but He'll lovingly offer you His hand, pull you up and say, "Let's try again." Whatever you do, don't stop trying. The enemy can't stop what won't stop.

Scriptures/thoughts from this weeks journey:

Hebrews 4:7 "Today, if you hear his voice, do not harden your hearts..."

Romans 8:33 "Who dare accuses us whom God has chosen for his own? Will God? No! He is the one who has given us right standing with himself. Who then will condemn us? Will Christ Jesus? No, for he is the one who died for us and was raised to life for us and is sitting at the place of highest honor next to God, pleading for us."

Romans 8:37 "...In all these things we are more than conquerers through him who loved us"

1 Peter 5:8-9 "Be self-controlled and alert. Your enemy the devil prowls around like a roaring lion looking for someone to devour. Take a firm stand against him, and be strong in your faith."

Sunday, October 24, 2010

The one thing that changes everything...

"I am the vine, you are the branches. If a man remains in me and I in him, he will bear much fruit, apart from me you can do nothing." John 15:5

I'm reminded today that the one thing that changes everything is whether or not we remain in Him. So often I forget it's that simple.

Want to bear much fruit? Remain in Him.
Want to conquer deep root strongholds? Remain in Him.
Want to be victorious in that seemingly hopeless situation? Remain in Him.
Want God to use you to mightily in the Kingdom of God? Remain in Him.
Want to be gracious and respectful to your spouse? Remain in Him.
Want to have the strength to be patient when you don't have it in you? Remain in Him.
Want to have a great day? Remain in Him.
Want to keep in perfect peace? Remain in Him.
Want to make sure you don't miss one good thing He has for you? Remain in Him.

Regardless of what I have going every day, my one job is to remain in stay plugged in to what He's saying and to be obedient to what He's telling me to do. If I miss that, I've missed the most important thing.

Feeling distant? Then I encourage you to push away the distractions and plug-in to your power source ...because it's the only thing that can truly change everything.

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Oooo...that's good!

So I've decided that I'm going to start sharing things that encourage me; either from a sermon I heard or from a book I'm reading...or even from a conversation with a wise individual. So many times throughout my day/week I hear something and think: "ooo....that's good" for the chance it may encourage you in any way, I thought I'd share. Feel free to add to the thought or share some of your "ooo....that's good" moments in the comment section because I'd love to add them to my mental list. =)

Here's a couple from this week. These may encourage you if: you are needing to learn how to find more rest in your life ...or... if you are needing wisdom regarding certain friendships ...or... if you feel like something in your life is hopeless and you are in need of a miracle...
1) The first one came from a sermon I was listening to from Mike Bickle on the Song of Solomon. There were a lot of things that stood out to me but I thought this was worded really well and is so true:

"Two-fold spiritual rest of a believer: a) the rest of a believer: We experience this with the knowledge that we are fully forgiven as a free gift in Jesus. b) The rest of intimacy: we experience this as we pursue intimacy with God. There is no rest until we conclude the highest purpose of our life is intimacy with God. Augustine (354-430 AS) wrote, "Man does not rest until he finds his rest in God." We only find our ultimate purpose for life in being wholehearted in our love for God. This is our highest life purpose that brings us peace and happiness in this life. Many believes who have the assurance of being forgiven are striving to find purpose and happiness. It is not a n issue of going to heaven but how and why they live on earth. There is a God-shaped vacuum in our hearts that can only be fulfilled in the rest of intimacy. Without resting in this area of our lives, we are far more vulnerable to strongholds and addictions, etc."

"Living before an audience of one. I heard the story of a concert pianist in the last century that longed to play in the great concert hall in Vienna. When he finished his first concert before thousands, the people gave him a long standing ovation. Afterwards, he was asked, "Was it the greatest moment in your life to receive this long applause?" The concert pianist replied, "No! I liked it, but it was not the most important thing to me," he said, "When the people all sat down, an elderly man who say in the top corner of the balcony simply nodded his head at me. That was the greatest moment of m life because he is the master who taught me for 30 years. One nod from him was worth much more than the long applause of the masses."

"We must learn to live before an audience of One. Receiving the nod from our Master has great power in the hearts of those who love Him. It has more power than the approval of all others."

2) The second one came from my Aunt, an amazing counselor of many years and follower of Christ:

"We can easily enjoy acquaintances, but we "bear with" true friends and family. This has helped me understand how we can meet someone and have a great time of fellowship and love being with that new friend and acquaintance. But the test of true friends and family are the willingness to "bear with". This is our responsibility in Christ and is a commitment."

3) The last one came from Tony Evans via a newsletter from Life Today:

"When God puts you or me between a rock and a hard place, He will often make a request that makes absolutely no sense. His request to the mourners (of Lazarus death) is not logical. Lazarus is literally between a rock and a hard place. Lazarus is literally behind a stone. Jesus asked the mourners to remove the stone without giving them any more information.

Here's the spiritual truth you can apply to your daily life: When God is getting ready to do something significant in our life that involves a deliverance from a situation gone bad, or a resurrection of a situation that has died, it will often include an illogical request. And I want to encourage you, when that happens, don't go logical on God. What we often do with God in situations like that is debate the instruction. Just life Martha did. Jesus' instruction to her was pretty simple, "Remove the stone."

With God it's not about logic. It's about doing what He says to do in faith. Once you add human logic to the Word of God, you ignore the power of God in your situation. Jesus doesn't want to have a discussion about the stone He has old us to remove. He doesn't want to know how big the stone is. He doesn't want to know how long the stone has been there. He doesn't even want to know how dead the dead is behind the stone. All Jesus wants you to do it remove the stone.

To experience the living Christ in your dead situation, belief must precede sight, because without faith it is impossible to please God (Heb 11:6). Faith precedes sight. One of the great verses in the Bible describes this situation. It says, "Now faith is the assurance of things hoped for, the conviction of things not seen" (11:1). In other words, belief requires no empirical evidence to validate what you are doing. There is nothing to taste, smell, touch, hear, or see in order for you to believe. There is nothing that the five senses can grab because if there is, then that is no longer faith. You don't have to see something to know that it's real. But what you do have to do is act in faith.

God says, the righteous "shall live by faith" (10:38). So how do you know when you have faith? You only know that you have faith when you remove the stone - when you do the thing that God has asked you to do. If you're not doing the thing that He told you to do, then you're not having faith. If you're discussing it, you're not at the point of faith yet; you're at the point of discussion. If you're thinking about it, you're not at the point of faith yet; you're at the point of thought.

You're not at the point of faith until God sees the stone move.

What can you expect to happen when you remove the stone? Jesus told Martha that if she will believe, she will see the "glory of God." The glory of God is seeing God manifest Himself in your situation.

God wants to make some dead scenarios come forth. He wants to make dead careers come alive once more. He wants to resurrect dead marriages.

Martha and Mary didn't make life come forth. All they did was remove the stone at His word. Then He created the miracle.

Someone reading this needs a miracle. Something in your life has died, and you need God to call it back to life. Someone is trapped in an addiction. You've tried everything that you know to get out of it but it doesn't seem to work. What you need is a resurrection. God can take your dead and dying scenario and call forth a resurrection. He can take what looks like a rotting situation and give it new life. He's just waiting for you to remove the stone. When we do what God says to do in faith, God is free to bring forth life."

Wednesday, October 6, 2010

Spiritually Bipolar

Spiritually Bipolar. That's my new name for how I feel so often. One minute I'm walking according to my "spirit person" and then the next I'm feeling things and acting in ways completely contrary to that. Where did this come from? Why did I just respond that way? My peace is gone and I feel awful inside. My heart is hurting and I can't think straight...why do I feel this way?...where did this come from? Why such an unmerited response?

I have found that God most often uses these "spiritually bipolar" moments to teach and grow me more than anything. I was going to say "build character" but in all honesty the word character slightly makes me nauseous. Sometimes times I feel like saying, "I really appreciate the offer Lord, but I've got about all the character I can handle at the moment." =)

But since I know how much He loves me, and have seen His faithfulness thus far and know He is always working to set me free to have a more abundant life... I roll with it... with open hands...but at times an anxious heart. We all know "heart surgery" is never fun... but absolutely critical in our relationship with God. Most often the only way to heal is to first under-go surgery. I can't count how many surgeries I've had to date but enough to know it's worth it. So this week when I started a book about insecurity by Beth Moore I made sure that I signed on the bottom line giving God full permission to do surgery (once again) if needed along the way.

I assume you know how that turned out being that God rarely lets an opportunity like that go to waste. =)

Well, I don't know about you but if there is one thing that I think causes me to be the most spiritually bipolar it's insecurity. Most often when I do something or feel something that is way off in left field, it's usually tied to some form of insecurity or fear for self. And I must admit... I HATE this!! I can't tell you how many times I leave a conversation or hang out with others and leave feeling like " who was that in there?" or "where in the world did that come from?" I hate it. Over time I've dealt with so many roots of insecurity but despite all the years of work this ugly thing still pop ups too often. This is always a big sign to me that something is still not right. I've learned that I can try to change the fruit all I want but until I tear down that tree and destroy that vine and build a new one...old fruit will still pop up... despite my efforts. I hate being a "sheer-will-power-fruit-hider-girl"...I want freedom...sheer freedom.

So I pick up the book and start to read. Beth starts by giving a definition of insecurity; this is what it was:

"The insecure person harbors unrealistic expectations about love and relationships. These expectations, for themselves and for others, are often unconscious. The insecure person creates a situation in which being disappointed and hurt in relationships is almost inevitable. Ironically, although insecure people are easily and frequently hurt, they are usually unaware of how they are unwitting accomplices in creating their own misery."

In case I wasn't sure if I experienced insecurity, this about cleared it up. Yep, definitely got that.

Then Beth went on to talk about different things in the book that can cause deep rooted insecurity. (insecurity is always multifaceted but I've found there is usually one main thing that it stems from and from that other branches form.) So I'm reading through them.. The first one doesn't hit me really... nor the second...but by the third I'm crying.

I hand over the scalpel because I know it's time for surgery.

I'm not going to go into detail for the sake of honoring others, but the one that hit me was rejection. You see, throughout my childhood (and some adulthood) I felt rejected by some people I really cared about and really desired their acceptance. Overtime I figured out how to get there acceptance in small ways, so I began to strive to excel in those areas. Add many years to that issue and here you have a girl that is desperate for acceptance and struggles with perfectionism, control, fear of failure, and is often extremely self-critical. What a mess. Then as if that's not enough, I believe I have what she labeled, "perceptual rejection" in which, I've become pre-dispositioned to it and expect to be rejected even when I'm not. Then my desire for acceptance is so high that it causes me to created so many unrealistic expectations that even in healthy relationships the feeling of rejection is almost inevitable. Craziness!!! THEN you add to THAT the fact that I'm a naturally sensitive person anyways!?!?! No wonder I have issues.

"Wow, Lord, where do I start?"...I wondered. Thankfully the first step in overcoming is realizing what the battle is. So now, it's on my radar screen. Check. Now I ask the Lord to show me when I feel it and then replace each feeling/lie with His truth about that situation. For example, today I was on the phone with one of Bella's doctors and he was incredibly rude, insensitive, and cold. He even cut me off telling me he didn't have time to hear the details of Bella's situation. Ugh. Sting. 'Not only did you reject me but you rejected my child.' I got off the phone and felt awful and couldn't shake it. Then I heard this still small voice say,

"I care. Just know that the one that has all the power to help Bella, cares the deepest. It's ok...I care, Alicia"

Healing... I can feel it. Tears fill my eyes as I type. He cares...I can't tell you how good that feels to hear Him say that...

I want you to know that I say none of this with a bitter heart. We are all broken people and broken people hurt people. I don't blame those people and I don't blame that doctor or whoever I perceive has rejected me or my heart that day. They are not the enemy and they are not my savior. Healing is not found in the perfect performance of any person, healing is only found in the Lord. He is the only one that can heal my heart. He's the only one that can help me pull that ugly root to the surface and destroy that thing inch by inch, and His words of truth are the only words that have the power to heal and expose every lie I've believed up to this point.

You know, if you would have asked me a year ago I would have said, "Yep! Already dealt/dealing with that" (insecurity that is). But God showed me this the other day: He gave me this image of me (a few years ago) discovering this root of insecurity and working through it to the point that I thought, "Ok, glad I dealt with that." But behind the scenes God was shaking the soil and loosening everything up to prepare for this week when I'd barely pull on that old weed and *BAM*... out comes this HUGE root that was feeding the other roots. And here I am once again, on the path to more healing and even though I'm just two days into this journey, it already feels so good.

He is so faithful...and so sweet to love me enough and care enough to do the hardest surgery there is. It's the only surgery and type of healing that all of the power of hell can't take away. I'm so thankful for that.

I don't know where you are in your journey but I encourage you to hand Him the scalpel when He asks for it. No matter how much you fear the pain of the exposed wound, I promise, it will be worth it.... and He will stitch your heart back up in a way you never dreamed was possible.

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Really Lord??? =)

As I'm hustling and bustling around doing my to do list for the day I start to feel a lack of peace. So I stopped and said, "OK, Lord...what's going on?" He said, just stop and spend a few minutes with me. Being the obedient one I am, I'm like, "really, Lord??? Don't you see my to do list?" =) But despite the inconvenience I chose to stop and see what He had on His mind.

So I turned on some worship music and instantly the Lord started speaking to me. He started by reminding me that, "being intimate with someone requires sacrifice." Then He reminded me of the story in Song of Songs, in chapter 5:3 when the guy was pursuing his lover for a moment of intimacy. He's at the door wanting to come in and this is what she says to him, "I have taken off my robe. Should I get dressed again? I have washed my feet. Should I get them soiled?"

Then basically, she just makes excuses until her lover leaves. Then she goes looking for him and she couldn't find him. A moment of intimacy...gone. All because she wasn't willing to let go of the excuses and say "yes."

This story is a perfect parallel with our relationship with the Lord. We can be so much like the girl when God pursues us with moments of intimacy. We rattle off our excuses and reason it away until the conviction lifts. Now that the convictions gone we just assume it wasn't God or perhaps indigestion and move on with life never knowing what we missed.

Every morning I get up and spend time with the Lord deepening my relationship with Him. But there are moments through out the day, not every day but a lot, where God wants me to come away with Him for a few minutes to share a moment of intimacy with Him. In those moments I have a choice to push it away, reject the voice of God and keep moving... or in faith say 'yes' knowing that I will miss out on something good if I ignore His calling.

A few months ago, God used the marriage relationship to really drive it home for me. I shared the analogy with a girl friend of mine and we both laughed and agreed about how true it was. My married girl friends will most likely understand this analogy to a whole other level but either way, it's an analogy that stuck with me.

Many times in marriage when a husband is pursing his wife for a moment of intimacy:
a) it is most often at an inconvenient time
b) the wife can always think of a million other things she needs to be doing
c) BUT after she says yes and the moment of intimacy is over... she's always really happy she did.

The analogy showed me that even though spontaneity may not always be convenient, it's usually great for the marriage.

In the same way, when the Lord pursues us at those highly inconvenient times we must lay down our schedules and be convinced that if we say 'no' and push away His calling, we will miss out on the intimate things God wants to share with us.

I know the times I respond and don't throw out the excuses...I always feel like a million bucks when I'm done and am so grateful I didn't miss what He shared with me in our time together.

So my prayer for you and me is that we won't settle for just maintaining relationship but will spice things up and respond to the Lord when He desires to be intimate with us and take us to deeper and deeper levels in matter how inconvenient His timing may seem. =)

Wednesday, September 1, 2010

The Best Referee I Know...

The last few weeks God has really been speaking to me a lot about a certain topic, but a couple days ago he really solidified it in my heart after a certain situation. The situation was this.

So as always, I have my list of "to do" items, "to buy" items , and "don't forget about" items. One of my "to buy" items was a calendar for my refrigerator. Old school I know...but with the fall starting up, our schedule is filling up fast with so much that I wanted to have something I could unload my brain on and then have it remind me everyday as I walk past it. Anyway, so I planned on just going to walmart the next day and grabbing one but I remembered how incredibly cute this one friends' of mine was on her refrigerator. She made hers online where she has cute photos of all their family on there and scriptures etc. So I thought, that's what I should do instead! So after Bella went to bed I got online to create one "real quick"...riiight.

Sooo, an hour later I'm still working on this calendar and only half way done. I'm still looking for the perfect scriptures to go on each month and a cute picture for each month. In no time I started getting frustrated because I'm realizing how long it's taking me to make this silly calendar. Before I know it, my peace is gone inside and I'm frustrated. Then Mike walks in and as we are talking it just hits me that I need to stop working on the calendar, delete what I had already done, agree to buy one at Walmart, and just spend time with my husband. Instantly, when I decided to do that my peace returned. So as hard as it was to delete all the work I'd done up to that point, I did, then went and spent the rest of the night laying on the bed talking with my husband about the Lord and different aspects of life.

Well, the next morning the Lord used that situation to drive home what he had been teaching me and reminding me of the past few weeks. This is what He said:

"Distractions are a bigger temptation to you right now than sin itself. And remember, distractions aren't always bad things. It wasn't bad to have a calendar with scriptures and pictures of your family but what you were giving up to have it was bad. You must never forget that when you say, "yes" to something, you are always saying "no" to something else..."

From that I was remind of this. God cares how I spend my time. Every day I clock in when I get up and from that point He has a way that he wants me to spend my time. He knows the most important things I need to get done each day and he wants to help me be diligent with my time and to help me spend it the best way possible. He has a perfect plan for my time every day and the enemies main job is to thwart that plan; whatever it may be...and the way he thwarts it is by presenting a distraction of some sort.

This fall I really have some ambitious goals on how many books I want to read, teachings I want to listen to, time I want to spend with my family, and principles I want to implement...BUT I'm realizing that in order to do so I have to really guard myself against distractions. Though things like facebook, emails, tv shows, searching the internet, etc, seem to be the ways I most often get distracted, those aren't the only things. Sometimes they are just good things that I don't need to be doing right the calendar.

One thing I have learned in my walk with God, that I want to share with you, is how I recognize when I start to do something that's not His will for me in that moment. In Colossians 3:15, it says to "let the peace of God rule in your heart." I've also heard it said, "let the peace of God be the referee of your heart." The way I see it, we are going through life and instantly we start to lose peace and get stressed inside. When I feel that I know the Holy Spirit just blew the whistle in my heart and said, "time out." Instantly, I know something isn't right. So I stop and pray and think through what happened to steal my peace. Then I "try on" different options and see if perhaps one restores peace. In the calendar situation, I noticed I lost peace and so after praying through it and trying on the idea of just canceling my calendar project on shutterfly, I knew what to do. Once I "tried on" canceling it, my peace was restored. I knew the Lord was telling me to let that project go and make better use of my time; like pillow talking all night with my hubby. =)

I must say though, sometimes it's really hard to do what he's telling me to do. I cant EVEN begin to tell you how many times he blows the whistle & calls a different play than what I had in mind. BUT I'm so glad he does. I can't tell you many times I'm so glad I listened...even when it didn't make sense. He loves me...and He loves you and in His goodness he doesn't want us to miss out on one good thing He has for us.

So my prayer for me and you is that we don't get distracted and that we are sensitive enough to the Holy Spirit to notice the lack of peace and the blown whistle...and that we will trust Him enough to courageously respond to His call...whatever it may be.

Wednesday, August 4, 2010

Re-program Me

I've been meaning to blog all week but it seems every time I plan a time to do it something comes up. I've learned that 9 times out of 10 when it comes to things like this that it's most often spiritual warfare. So tonight I decided to push through the funk and share with you what the Lord's been doing in my heart here recently.

So this past month a particular situation happened that left me battling some major insecurity. Though insecurity is a common thing that I battle here and there at different times, it normally doesn't shake me to the core or cause me think thoughts and experience feelings that leave me shocked at my own self. It was weird. So weird, that I knew I had to take it to the Lord and ask Him to reveal to me what in the world was going on there. So I began to pray and ask the Lord to reveal what that was all about. It's as if I heard him say, "I'm so glad you asked...."=)

Well, it all kind of started the day of my 26th birthday after Mike and I had just left to go out and celebrate my birthday. Within a few minutes of being in the car, I randomly started having this craving to just be alone with the Lord, just me and Him. My heart started to get heavy and I couldn't shake the feeling. I know when the Lord means business and this was one of those times. I couldn't shake it, so after about 10 minutes of being in the car, I said, "Babe I know this is weird but I just really feel like I'm supposed to just go away by myself and spend time with the" Thankfully I have a husband that understands the conviction of God and His 'inconvenient' timing sometimes, so he recommended that I take the hour before our reservation and just drive off somewhere and see what the Lord had on His mind. So I dropped Mike off at a shopping center and went and found a random parking spot where I felt secluded; just me and God.

(The next part of this may sound weird to you but it's part of the story so bare with me.)

So I'm sitting there in my parked car and feel the Lord leading me to get out my journal and listen to "Oh how loves me" by Kim Walker. I've heard that song a MILLION times but I just went with it and turned it on. Well, she got the first sentence out, "He is jealous for me.." and I just started weeping, uncontrollably. As weird as it was, in that moment of brokenness I felt like God was desperate for me to encounter His unconditional love in a way that I never had before...and I did.

In that one hour with the Lord, He showed me things about myself I never realized...insecurities I didn't realize I had...agreements I had made about myself that I was blind to. He replaced lies with truth. He supernaturally healed areas of my heart I didn't know were broken. He did surgery on my heart and it was the most amazing thing I've ever experienced.

You see, what He showed me during that time is that my entire life I have been programmed to believe things that are contrary to the truth in His word. I don't know how you have been programmed but mine goes something like this:
What is your value? What is your worth? Oh that's easy....
how smart are you? how athletic are you? how do you measure up to those around you? how well decorated is your house? how fit are you? how tan are you? how big/small is your chest...your butt...your thighs...your waist? how successful are you? how clean do you keep your house? how big is your savings account? how obedient, well adjusted is your child? how much do those you love appreciate you? how do you think others see you? how stylish are you? how good of a cook are you? how good of a mom are you???........

Trust me, I could go on and on, but the point is my whole life I've been programmed to believe that my value is a sum of my parts. Oh, and the enemy has been cruel. No matter how hard I work to "measure up" he'll just find another area of weakness in my life or on my body, and say, "see...unlovely and unlovable."

I'll never forget one thing the Lord told me that night. He said, "Alicia, finding your worth and value in anything else but me is the most addictive drug ever. It may satisfy for the moment but the next day you'll wake up just as empty and desperate for more. You will crave it and you will do anything to get more of it. It will destroy you and it will destroy your destiny."

So as you can imagine, I've been relentless in processing through how I was programmed, and now I've been going through each lie and replacing it with truth. The more I've been mediating on truth the more I become convinced of it.

Truth is, God doesn't look at outward appearance (what the world looks at), God looks at the heart. (1 Samuel 16:7). Truth is, charm is deceptive and beauty is fleeting, but a woman who fears the Lord is to be praised. (Proverbs 31:30).

Oh God, re-program me to love what you love and value what you value. Help me see past the deception and the lies of this world.

Re-program me, me.