With God’s Grace & Resilience

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Signs of a Life – Part X

When you finally come out of the dark clouds and can see the sun shining brightly, your heart feels light and you begin to walk with a bounce in your step. Everything seems to be going your way and then you start to recognize how all of the puzzle pieces are coming together and it all starts to make sense.  Everything you went through was for a reason.

For me, I am a much stronger person than I was three years ago. I have learned so much more about myself, my wants, my desires, and my needs. I have learned that I deserve more and that I am enough. God loves me unconditionally, and that’s the most important thing. He wants the best for all of us. Find a way to develop and grow your relationship with God. That means starting your day with Him. Be still in the quiet time and open your heart. Listen for that small soft voice in your head as the Holy Spirit guides you through your day. It doesn’t happen overnight, just keep talking with Him and trust that He is holding you in by the palm of your right hand.

The Faith that I have in Him and our relationship has grown so strong; it’s what gets me through every day and helps me when I do have doubts and concerns determining His Will for me. Right now, I feel like I am swinging on a high and God keeps pushing me higher and higher. So follow those signs He is leaving for you.  Turn to Him when you are struggling. Don’t be afraid to pray big prayers. Ask and you shall receive. Trust in His timing and believe that everything you want is coming your way!

Reaching OthersComing out on the other side of those dark clouds is not an easy path. It is full of it’s up and downs and confusing paths that all seem to go in different directions. These paths sometimes lead you outside of your comfort zone. They may test your tenancity. You may also learn who your true friends are and those who are not. Just remember that only God knows what you’ve been through.

Only God knows the walk you’ve taken and the lessons you’ve learned. God knows your every move before you ever make it, and He knows the true story! Don’t let what other people think get you down! He sees and knows everything! People will judge you, people will talk. It’s normal and it’s to be expected because we are all sinners. Just be true to yourself. Ask for His forgiveness, and bless those who trespass against you. Love them despite their actions, just as God loves each one of us! Just as they do not know your walk, you do not know their walk either. Everyone has a story to tell. Many people hide their emotions by stuffing them deep inside themselves. The problem is that you can only stuff so much until it starts to overflow. When that happens, it starts to get raw.

When I was a kid, I always heard, “it will get worse before it gets better”, or “it will be better before you get married’, “every dark cloud, has a silver lining’….. Just hold on because it will get better! God has your back. Hold on because when you have your faith – you have everything! The best is yet to come! Just keep moving forward one day at a time! Hold your head high knowing the only love you need, is the love and respect of God!

 

No Turning Back

Signs Of A Life – Part IX

No Turning Back

After that agonizing decision has been made and you feel totally at peace with it, do not turn back! It took a lot of work to get you to the point where you are now. Why would you want to go back only to start all over again?

I realize that this may not be a fix-all solution and everyone is different and every situation is different, but there is something to be said for your tenacity. Once you come to the realization that there is no turning back, you will feel like you can tackle anything! I so believe in signs from God and if you are reading this post, maybe this is just the sign He wanted you to see.

Remember my post last month when I asked God if that was all He could do for me when I asked to receive a heart shaped rock as a sign? When He put in my path that next rock, I was in awe! Literally breathless. All I could do was shake my head, smile, and thank Him! Only God can do something like that!

God can move mountains and He will make a way when you think there is none. We just have to trust and believe in Him. His way might not seem perfect to you, but none of us have an all-knowing gift of knowledge. We are not mind readers and we can not predict the future. What I do know though, is that God directs our steps and we need to trust Him with our walk. He’s brought us this far, so if you are having doubts, take a deep breath and ask God to calm your anxiety and guide you.

We can only see what we see and know to be true. God though, He knows everything. He knows our thoughts before we think them. He knows our steps before we take our next. He is the only one that has the crystal ball. That crystal ball is the gateway to happiness and living an abundant life. The key thing to remember though, is that it is not always just about us. You see our life touches many other people and there is a ripple effect. Every action we take creates a chain reaction and God knows the ending and where the next wave will crash. So we have to learn to always look for the good in any situation and try to look past our immediate needs and suffering. Look for the good that may have come to someone else as a result of your discomfort. Do not fear though, God will give you something even better in return. Even if you are unsure of what will happen next. Relying on God to direct our steps is the only sure way to get to our next destination – God’s plan for us.

 

When We Have Doubts

Signs of a Life – Part VIII

Choices

 

How many times have you made a decision, acted on it, and then started doubting your decision and yourself all together? Making some of our biggest life-changing decisions are very hard to do; painstaking in fact! We overthink about it. We cry about it. We talk to others and gain advice. We talk to God. We get counseling. We make our list of pros and cons. Despite all of the steps we take and the support we gain, we still doubt our decision. We wonder and question ourselves over and over as to whether this was God’s plan for us. Why would God let us go through such pain?

It’s the lessons we learn as we walk through these tough times that make us stronger. He is making us stronger and better individuals all the time. He tests our abilities and our weaknesses and then builds us up. What I’ve learned through this entire decision making process is simply to trust God. Yes, I’ve had my doubts; and yes, I’ve cried many tears. Through it all though, I did learn to trust God and listen for His small soft voice in my head. The hardest part was learning how to decipher His voice, your thoughts, and the devil that is always trying to bully us and gain our attention. It took me a while, but I learned that if my decision does not bring me a feeling of peace and certainty, then it is not the right decision. You see, God gives us peace!

“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

In my circumstance, I had to give it yet one more try. Despite the many attempts in the past, broken promises, and yes, even lies, I had to give it one more try in order to feel at peace with my decision. Did that delay my progress? Yes, maybe a little but it left me feeling confident in what had to be done next. It allowed me to make my list of to-do’s and start crossing them off one by one and feeling proud of my accomplishments and confident in my decision.

I must say though, even after the dust settled, I still started doubting myself again. It’s a constant battle that we all must fight. When you are feeling that self-doubt, I encourage you to turn to God and He will help you get your heart back in alignment with His Plan and the peace He has in store for you will come. However you talk with God, whether it be silently in your thoughts, journaling, or spoken prayer, His hand is right there for the taking. You just have to reach out! Ask for His guidance, His strength, His love, His courage, His healing, His forgiveness; ask and believe it is yours!

“Therefore I tell you, whatever you ask in prayer, believe that you have received it, and it will be yours.” ~ Mark 11:24

 

Do You Know Who Your Guardian Angels Are?

“Signs of a Life” – Part III

2019_04_08_2019_03_29_Narrative Project_1932__DSC0225During my recovery in the hospital, I also learned that God is not the only one watching over me from above. When I was in and out of sleep after my heart attack, I went into a dream state where I saw three individuals sitting on a bench much like this one. Except, the bench was just above my bed sitting in the clouds and I could see many silhouettes of people, whom I believed to be angels in the distance. I could see the sides of the first two gentleman closest to me as they were sitting there just waiting. I recognized right away the first man was my father. He looked exactly like he did back in the 70’s with his long sideburns, yet he could not look down at me. The second man, a bit taller than my dad, was my stepfather. He was looking over my dad and down on me with such a loving, yet concerned, look. The third man, I could not see, but somehow I just knew in my heart it was my grandfather. That surprised me more than anything, because for so long I thought my grandmother was one of my guardian angels. Oh, I’m sure she’s still looking down and watching, but this would be the second time now that my grandfather has come to me in a dream just like this and the only time I have dreamed about him since his death.

There is something to be said about the power of three and this holds true for me as well. Three has always been my lucky number and a number I gravitate to. I love to give three kisses good night or goodbye – one is never enough!  One night when I was so stressed out, I felt the presence of someone sitting on my bed behind me three times. It was as if one person sat down and got up, and then another, and then yet another. I swore someone was there; but every time I looked, there was no one. I was awake and it kinda freaked me out a little. Eventually, I just brushed it aside and thought it must be my grandmother checking in on me. After this dream in the hospital though, I now know it was my three guardian angels blessing me and letting me know everything was going to be alright.

Do you know who your guardian angels are? How do they show up to you? Some leave dimes, some show up as butterflies, feathers, hearts. Our loved ones find many ways to show us they are still among us and with us. Never fear for they are still very near! This dream I had in the hospital, it was very real and I no longer have fear of dying. I know my loved ones will be with me one day and we will all meet on the other side – the never ending journey with God!

God Has A Plan For Each Of Us

“Signs of a Life” – Part II

Jeremiah 32:11

As I heard the nurse calling for the paddles, I remember screaming in my head, “God, I’m not ready to die!”  The next thing I remember is grabbing at my face because I couldn’t breathe. As I came to, my nurse was getting off of me and so many people were in my room in a panic of chaos. It was then I realized I did not die, but now things really got serious and things didn’t look so good!

Over the next several days I was watched around the clock and I realized that God definitely had a plan for me. Jeremiah 29:11 eventually became a Sign from God and my favorite verse in the Bible.

“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.”

Follow the LightWhile God never promised us life would be easy, He did say He would be right there with us guiding us and holding us by our right hand. He did this for me that I am certain. There are times in life when God just has to take control. He realizes we need a break and sometimes forces us to do so! That’s what He did for me and I will be forever grateful.

“So do not fear, for I am with you; do not be dismayed, for I am your God.   I will strengthen you and help you; I will uphold you with my righteous right hand.”   ~  Isaiah 41:10

Not only did I change through self-development, but my experience also helped change the course of how leadership at my job manages their projects and their teams now. If my experience helped even just one other person, it was all worth it! Since then, I am no longer intimated by anyone. I take life as it comes and know that God always has a better plan than I do. His timing is all that matters. If something doesn’t work out the way I planned, I am thankful that His plan will be much greater than I ever imagined. Trust me, I’m human and sometimes it does take me a little while to swallow my disappointment, but it doesn’t take long before God shows His hand and I am moving forward with much anticipation and excitement of what comes next in this journey with Him by my side!

 

 

It’s Not Worth It!!!

“Signs of a Life” – Part I

Under Pressure

 

Much like many people, I’m sure I’m not alone when I say I’ve lived a stressful life. We all face stress. Stress comes to all of us in many ways and we all deal with stress and react to stress  differently.  For me, I thought I handled it really well. I was strong during the moment when I needed to be for me and my family, though when I was alone I would break down for moment of release. I would recover and do it all over again time after time. I thought I could handle anything.

As a young teen, I watched my mother suffer five years of her life through a nervous breakdown and never knew if my mom would survive that ordeal. Thank God, she did as God had a plan for her. He miraculously healed her when the doctors gave up on her. You can read about her miraculous healing in our first book, “Signs from God” that we published in 2014 and made available on Amazon.  My mother has an amazing story, and while her story will always be a part of mine, my story has allowed us to expand our purpose even further. As you can imagine, watching your mother suffer something so traumatic as this, it makes you grow up fast and you have to learn how to handle that stress. This is where it all started for me at a young age.

At the age of 53, my stress level hit its peak and I broke!  On April 27, 2016, I went to work like any other day, but this day I was managing a difficult project. In fact, one of the biggest projects my team had worked before. We were getting oversight from our upper management team and leadership and we were taking the brunt of the project’s failure due to issues outside of our control. I knew my team and I were doing everything we possibly could, but we were already set up to fail when this project was incorrectly solutioned.  This particular day, I was in a meeting with someone that intimidated me so bad and I was so frustrated because he was not listening to me. When I am made to feel like my opinion doesn’t matter, I clam up. I think that is probably a normal response, and many people do the same thing. Some people might just brush that off and forget about it, but I let it fester, and over the course of several hours it built up so much that I found myself heading to the hospital to be checked out that evening!

The results were positive and they admitted me. I was there for ten long nights with lots more stress and anxiety to follow. Along with cardiac arrest, tests, and even a pump inserted up to my heart to relieve it from having to do all the work. This experience changed my life in so many ways. Some of which I will share with you in this series of blogs!

How do you handle your stress?  Do you internalize it or do you release it? I’ve learned it’s important to understand your triggers. So give that some thought as we move through this series together!

 

As I Look Back I Thank God For Everyday!

“Signs of a Life”  – Welcome

So It BeginsAs I sit back and look over the past three and half years, I thank God every single day for giving me a second chance. I used to think I was so strong that I could handle any situation. I used to think I could help everyone simply because I wanted to. I used to think that I could help people become better people. I used to think I could make a difference. Now, I understand so much more of the bigger picture. It’s not all about you and me. We are such a small piece of the puzzle in God’s masterpiece. Think about it, without every piece to the puzzle the picture is never complete. Things happen for a reason and we cannot change anyone. We can only change our reaction to the situations we are placed in.

The older I get, the more I am seeing the puzzle pieces come together. Like a book has its Chapters; a Play has its Parts; and, a Series has its Seasons. Life too has its Parts, Chapters, and is a series of events that must happen before we can see for ourselves the amazing never-ending Life God has in store for us all. He never promised it was going to be easy and that we wouldn’t experience heartache or pain. Though, I can say that every mountain I’ve had to climb has given me strength and determination to face the next mountain knowing that God will be there to guide me and pull me to safety every single time.

This Spring, I was honored to have been asked to become the subject of a photo-journal storyboard project from an acquaintance at the time. She has since become a very good friend, and I will cherish the memories we shared during this project for the rest of my life and I know we will continue to grow our friendship for a long time. This opportunity was very enlightening to me as she shared with me recently how she was able to capture my story. Seeing her interpretation through her lens was amazing. She named her project, “Signs of a Life”. Seeing how she was able to capture the past three years of my life in photos was a true testament to her God-given talent. To hear how I touched her life was such a heart-warming feeling, it gives me chills now and left me speechless as I turned the pages of the book.

I would like to share this story and her interpretation with all of you if you are interested in following along. I experienced a heart attack in 2016 and God gave me another chance. He opened my eyes, my desires, and my realizations that I deserve more! That Chapter of my life has ended, and I am facing a new and exciting Chapter that will be a page turner for sure. God gave me a talent and a dream to write, and lately He has been after me to share my story and my love of God and how He works in my life so that I can be a light to others. Heidi has given me a unique way of sharing. You will be able to feel my story through her photos and my words.

I encourage you to follow along – you won’t be sorry!

The Rock

When I realize I need to get grounded and spend time with God, I typically turn on my spiritual playlist and start singing and praising him through song. I also love to get outside for a hike back to nature, or a walk looking up into the clouds. I love to look for signs from God, which typically come in the form of hearts, crosses, and affirmations. The other day I was driving down the road singing along with my playlist, and everywhere I looked I found a cross. They were actual crosses, or I saw a cross in a light post on the side of the road, or a cross sign, and even things that weren’t crosses, my eyes found a way to turn them into a cross. It was apparent that God was with me and I felt so blessed. I felt like I could tackle anything.

heart rock

That evening in my quiet time with God I was thanking Him for his presence earlier that day in my journal. I journal to God every day giving Him thanks and asking for His help in areas where I need support, or sending up blessings and prayers for loved ones. On that journal entry, I ended it writing, “You are my Rock!”, and then it hit me and I remembered the heart shaped rock I found a week or so ago while I was out hiking. Moments like that truly stop my heart for a second and I realize what He has done for me in my life and the blessings He is still sending my way! He truly is my rock, my fortress, my everything!

God speaks to us all differently, sometimes we just have to be open to hearing his soft voice or recognizing those signs He sends us. I encourage you to look for the signs, listen for His voice, and reach out because He is always there!

3 Years Strong

There are certain days in your life that you will never forget. Like the day you got married, the day your child was born, the day you lost a loved one, your first kiss, etc. Well for me, today marks three years since I was admitted to the hospital for chest pains. This day three years ago is where my story of self-recovery began and I was far from strong!

I never knew that stress could effect your body so greatly. The day after I was admitted, I went into cardiac arrest. It was the worst feeling in the world because I could feel it coming on, I heard the nurse call for the paddles, and I saw the agonizing look on my husband’s face before I faded away screaming to myself, “God, I’m not ready to die!”

Luckily, God wasn’t ready for me to die yet either. He still has a plan for me. He just needed to take control because my stress was out of control. He needed me to take time to heal, learn how to deal with my stress, and to take time to just ‘Be Still’. I was dealing with so many different stressors at that time in my life, I guess I just couldn’t handle any more. Thank God for stepping in and giving me the time to heal. God does this for all of from time to time. The thing is though, is that we have to recognize it for what it is – a sign from God.

Looking back on this time and these past three years, I can see so clearly His role in my life, the decision He helped me make, and now the reasons why. It blows my mind sometimes and I feel so blessed to have this relationship with Him. Whenever I am struggling now with even a little decision, I turn to God and He seems to always find a way to answer me. It may be in a scripture I read, a thought the spirit puts in my head, or just finding a cross in my path throughout the day that lets me know He is with me.

This past year alone, I made the decision to separate from my husband, I moved into my own place, and I’ve met so many amazing friends that have helped me through some of my bad days and have been here to share in some of the fun times that give me such hope for my future. My life is now free from so many stressors, yet there is still worry because now I am living alone. Though, I know God is with me and I will be ok.

Despite boughts of anxiety and stress worrying about a high blood pressure reading, or a couple of skipped beats and palpitations from time to time, I have come to rely on the Lord to get me through. I do my best to push away the fear and welcome His presence and loving arms instead of falling into the downward spiral of doubt and fear. When Satan tries to grab my attention, that’s when I reach out and grab the hand of God that is always there stretched out and reaching to pull me closer to him!

1When I look at this picture that was taken a day after I got out of the hospital, I can see the pain I was dealing with, and I feel the anxiety in the pit of my stomach, but I also see the love in my mother’s eyes, but most importantly I can see how far I have come from that time in my life. I don’t wish that experience on anyone, but I pray that everyone learns or gains a better understanding through my writing and experience of the love that God has for each of us and that He is always with us. I wish I could say that you won’t experience heartache or trials or rough times in your life, because we all know that’s not true. Life is full of disappointments, setbacks and lots of tears, but it’s how we deal with these situations and how we learn to change our reactions to the things that scare us the most. The next time you find yourself in one of these unforeseen situations, think back to a time when you felt loved and protected, and then turn your focus to God because He is always with you, loving you, and reaching His hand out to you. All you have to do is grab it!

Choose Wellness: It’s a Lifestyle

Over the next two weeks, I will walk you through 3 simple steps that you can use to practically and affordably make your home a safer and healthier place to live! This class is free, fun, and I promise to share information with you that will blow your mind and inspire you to make some big changes. We’re all in this together, and I am here to guide you every step of the way!

Home is where the heart is… there’s no place like home… home sweet home. Our home is a safe haven – a place for creating great memories, spending time with loved ones, and truly relaxing and being yourself. Everyone wants the best for their family, but have you ever considered the fact that items in your home could be making you sick? The average American home is filled with hidden toxins and familiar products that are actually poisonous and harmful. Whether you’re aware of them or not, these hidden toxins are reeking havoc on the wellness of you and your loved ones. It’s sobering to realize the very real effects these misleading products have on our health, but it’s empowering to use this knowledge and take control! In tonight’s class, we’re going to outline 3 simple steps to upgrading from a toxic home to a total Young Living™ Lifestyle!

Be sure to Follow so you can follow along in this Blog Series as I will introduce to you these 3 Simple Steps!

CHOOSE NOW and  START HERE:  www.believeinessentials.com

 

Why Did I choose this Lifestyle?

If you’ve been following me, you already know. If you just stumbled upon my blog this morning, you might be surprised! I was 53 years old, when I had a heart attack all from stress. April 27th will be my third anniversary since the day my life changed. Stress has always been a part of my life and I thought I could manage it pretty well. I was always able to hold things together in the moment, but when things started to settle, that’s when my stress really started to build.

April 27th, 2016 was a prime example of how I handled my stress. Except, on this day, my body had said, or God said, ‘enough is enough’!  It took me six long months to recover from Broken Heart Syndrome. I suffered a cardiac arrest, went through an angiogram procedure to check for blockages, and even had a pump inserted to my heart to relieve the pressure on my heart where the pump did the work for my heart.  All of this lead to even more stress as you can imagine! I then had to deal with the stress of potentially dying, losing my family, separation anxiety, etc…..

Not long into my recovery is when I was introduced to essential oils. At first, it was some cheap oils and a diffuser from Amazon which I had no clue of how or why to use them. So I simply started diffusing as the instructions said. It wasn’t long after than that a family member came to visit, saw the oils, and told me to throw them away immediately. Why? essential oils are good for you right!? Well, she went on to inform me that all oils are not the same and that quality matters and is very important! She began to tell me about Young Living Essential Oils, and well here I am about to tell you the same thing!

Young Living has changed my life, helped me remove all of the toxins and chemicals that we breathe in everyday not knowing how they are damaging our bodies. I learned how to use essential oils to help me support my anxieties and stress levels. I leared how to support all of my body systems and feel so much better for it! I feel like a new person!

Please join and follow along as I share with you all of the amazingness that Young Living has to offer! Let me help you take the stress out of your life! Let me help you remove the toxins and harsh chemicals from your home! Let me help you make a Lifestyle Change that will thank me for!

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