Hearing God In Haiti

#CoreLuv #DependtheOrphan
#CoreLuv #DependtheOrphan

I recently went on a mission trip to Haiti. I thought I would share my journal entries from the trip for today’s blog post.

Aug. 13, 2016

It’s crazy how the first idea of doing a mission trip in Haiti came from Lilly Grove but it was Lakewood that brought me here. I’m wondering if God planted that idea in my head years ago for this very moment.

I pray that God helps me to open my heart, close my mind, and release my worries so I can hear from Him and be transformed! I wanted this trip to change me.

I was just talking to my roommates tonight about how it’s easy to look at the Haitians and think how unfortunate they are and how lucky we are to be born in the states…I’m realizing that God loves us all. He has all His children in the palms of His hands. He knows what He’s doing. He’s not comparing us. He’s not setting some of us up to be blessed and others to be cursed. He’s not setting some of us up to succeed and some of us to fail. We’ve defined the parameters of success and being blessed. We’ve compared and separated ourselves. God loves us all, and He shows us all His love in the way we most need.

Aug 14, 2016

“In order to be effective your capacity must expand. Your purpose is never achieved. It is discovered and then nurtured.” (From morning devotion)

This morning’s devotion was Acts, I think Chapter 19. I have to look it up later. The lights are not on in here. I can’t even see to write this. It was about Saul. God told him to reach out to someone if I’m remembering correctly. But he didn’t want to. It just speaks to me with all the things I don’t move forward on. Last night, I thought to pray with the girls I shared a room with before bed but I didn’t say anything….I often have things on my heart that I don’t act on. Lack of confidence and fear mostly. Sometimes unforgiveness. We don’t know the opportunities we miss out on by not following God’s instruction for whatever reason. I definitely need to grow in this area.

Aug 15, 2016

Today at the orphanage I spent time with a young girl in a wheelchair (Cassandra). I was amazed at her personality. She told me she wanted to go get on the swing. Then she told me to take her over there. Then push her. Lol. I’m not that assertive about what I want! It was amazing that she’s perfect. I guess I was expecting her to be not present mentally but was. She was fully aware and fully present. I pray for all those kids. In America, we think about what we want to be when we grow up and what our potential is. I don’t think those are their thoughts. So I pray for their future. Whatever God’s plan and vision is for their lives, I pray that it is fulfilled. I pray for their purpose in the kingdom of God to be fulfilled and brought forth. I pray for their health and their hearts. I pray that God blesses them with more joy and happiness and more helping hands.

Aug. 16, 2016

I forgot to mention that yesterday we went to a woman’s house who used to be a witch doctor. It’s how she made a living. She was converted (saved). She accepted Jesus as her Savior. Now she has another business. It just goes to show that God will replace the sinful thing you are holding on to with something better. Your needs will be taken care of.

It’s our last night in Haiti…I’m thankful for the experience. I’m thankful for Jami and Jeanny and Sandra. It’s an honor watching their walk with God. Tonight they prayed for us one on one. It’s amazing what this experience has been. I got to watch intimate relationships with God up close and personal. I got to love on kids and experience their love and joy. I saw them as people. God’s beloved children.

I pray that my sister would have an opportunity to go on a mission trip. I pray that God opens up the right doors for her. I pray the same for my mom if she’s interested. I pray it for my brother. He’s a helper (like me).


As I think of my experience in Haiti I’m reminded of the opening lines of Good, Good Father:

♬ ♪ Oh, I’ve heard a thousand stories
Of what they think You’re like
But I’ve heard the tender whisper
Of love in the dead of night ♬ ♪

I feel like I heard God for myself in Haiti. I’m forever closer to Him. I’m forever changed. I pray God pulls me closer and I pray the same for you.

Moving Beyond Intentions….

Road, Start, Beginning, Intention, Plant

So here I am encouraging you all to have hope, faith, and prayer, yet I wasn’t necessarily adhering to the prescription.  I’m sure it happens to us all: we can tell our friends and family to be encouraged and give specific scripture to help them with their situations, but when we go through something, we fail to encourage ourselves.

The whole reason my family and I decided to blog was to share our experiences with prayer, doubt, faith, hope, answered prayers and whatever else God put on our hearts to share.

I’ve been dealing with some doubt.  I don’t know.  I feel like I’m just in a holding pattern.  I try to pray, but I often times don’t even know what to say.  I say I try, but I actually do pray.  If I don’t say anything else, I say thank You.  But that’s not what God wants from me.  He wants a real relationship with me (and you), and truth be told, I want the same.

God is urging me to commune with Him in prayer.  I know because of what I experienced at the Women’s Prayer Breakfast (If you follow our Facebook page, www.facebook.com/hopefaithprayers, you may have seen us check-in.), and the Word that came down the next day at church.  The pastor of the church I attend preached from Isaiah 40:28-31.  One of the points he made was at v.31:  they will walk and not be faint.

The pastor called us to be OK with the ordinariness of life (the walk..not the run, nor the soar). This is how I know, God is urging me to really commit to Him.  That is what I am struggling with:  I feel like I’m waiting on the next phase of my life to begin.  I’ll admit, I am sometimes discouraged because it has not happened in my time.

At the women’s breakfast, we received a book: 30 Days to a More Dynamic Prayer Life: Making God Your Focus by John Franklin.  Last night (Sunday), I was going to read the introduction so that I would be ready to begin Monday morning, but I had pattered around the house doing this and that so much so that by the time I settled down I was too sleepy to focus.  I said to myself, I will read it tomorrow and start Tuesday morning.

Tuesday, my absolutely adorable chi-weenie, usually sleeps through the night, but last night she didn’t.  She got up about 3:30 am, so I got up and let her out.  She came back in but was still restless, so we went back out.  After all of that, I was wide awake……I read the introduction.

I know God is calling me to come into better fellowship with Him, and I really believe He won’t move me forward until I move Him forward, to the front of my life, beyond just good intentions.

Will you pray for me as I work through these feelings?



For if you forgive other people when they sin against you, your heavenly Father will also forgive you. Matthew 6:14 New International Version (NIV)

Forgiveness is one of the hardest acts to do but also one of the most rewarding. Many have heard the saying, “Forgiveness is not for the other person but for you.” Although it might be hard to wrap our minds around, it is actually true. Allow me to paint a vivid picture for you:
When we hold on to unforgiveness it kills our joy. It steals our peace and destroys our future. Sometimes unforgiveness has an irreversible impact on others. Unforgiveness does the same things the thief does.
The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy. John 10:10
July has been a trying month for our nation, and it has weighted heavy on my heart. As I think about the victims and the shooters in all cases, my question is why? Although I don’t know the full details of any of the cases and can only speculate, what I do know is the Dallas shooter said he wanted to kill cops. The Baton Rouge shooters were targeting cops. I wonder: Did they have unforgiveness in their hearts?

Sometimes we carry unforgiveness for many years. I can understand that. I can understand being hurt by others for no apparent reason. I can also understand people not liking you simply because of your skin color. Although I have never knowingly been a victim of racism, I have been caused distress by my own family because of the pigment of my skin. I don’t know which is worst, but what I do know is hanging on to someone else’s opinion of you will leave you bitter, angry, and unforgiving.
As a child, I was oblivious to what the name they called me meant; I was called it for many years. It wasn’t until I got older that someone told me. I don’t ever remember crying about it or trying to retaliate; my parents raised me to respect my elders.  Beyond being raised right, I attribute my lack of anger to God’s natural design.

As I reflect on my childhood, I’m reminded when Jesus said, “Let the little children come to me, and do not hinder them, for the kingdom of heaven belongs to such as these.”- Matthew 19:14
Children are so pure in heart; they hold on to no wrong and are forgiving by God’s design.

I believe this single event in my childhood was the catalyst that allowed me to forgive others.  Because I was a child, and the intent was beyond me, I didn’t know that I should be angry or resentful.  I think back and realize that I have just never really held on to unforgiveness.  Perhaps because by the time I realized certain members of my family were using derogatory language towards me, it was too late to be angry about it.  At the same time, however, I have been mad at others and retreated away, BUT in the back of my mind, I always knew I had to make things right regardless if I was  right or wrong.

I could have very well allowed this event in my childhood to become the pathway to a life of unforgiveness. There have been many times I found myself perplexed, hurt, and betrayed by others and life’s situations. It was during these times that I knew I could find comfort in Jesus.

As a Christian, forgiveness is expected of us from our Heavenly Father especially if we want Him to forgive us. Secondly, forgiveness frees us from bitterness, hatred, and strife. Forgiveness allows us to live a life full of peace and unshakable joy.

Unfortunately, unforgiveness has killed, stolen and destroyed so much in our nation. When you count up the cost, families are destroyed, dreams and possibilities are buried, children and parent bonds are cut short, photo album pages are left blank and hearts are left with holes. Unforgiveness affects so many lives, some lives that had not part of the act(s) that caused the brokenness. We must learn to forgive and forgive quickly.

Prince of Peace


I was walking toward the church building this morning. I park a block or so away to avoid the after church traffic. I couldn’t see them, but I knew they were there.

“They” being the hecklers and protesters who like to camp outside the church and harass, I mean “redirect” those who are clearly following the wrong Shepard. The Shepard in this case being Pastor Joel Osteen of Lakewood Church.

As I got closer I saw them yelling from a bullhorn and holding signs. I hurried on by, not wanting to give them the attention that they wanted. I did happen to see the words “false prophet” on the sign they were holding. These hecklers tend to be so focused on Pastor Osteen’s financing that they overlook what Lakewood represents to the world.

I love Lakewood. I love what the church does for its members. I love what it does in the community and around the world. You can take free classes on parenting, marriage, substance abuse, anger management and more. Even Christians who are not members of Lakewood have been able to take advantage of the life classes that the church offers.

Whether there’s a natural disaster such as the recent flooding in Houston or a family in need for a holiday meal, Lakewood is there.

Paul Osteen, Joel’s brother just returned from a three and half month trip to Africa. Paul is a surgeon. His wife is a nurse. They use their gifts and vocation to bless others who would not have access to medical care otherwise.

I could go on and on about why I love Lakewood, but that isn’t the point of this blog post. My purpose today is to share with you a specific characteristic of Jesus that we should look for in each other and ourselves.

Jesus goes by a lot of names. He has been called The Everlasting God, The Creator of all Things, The Angel of God, The Messenger of the Covenant, The Lamb of God, and The Living Bread to name a few. One of my favorite names is The Prince of Peace.

Jesus stands for peace. Not discord. Not disorder. Not chaos. Not harassing people on their way to worship Him. Peace.

The bible references peace many times.

For God is not a God of disorder but of peace—as in all the congregations of the Lord’s people. – 1 Corinthians 14:33

6 Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God.
7 And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus. – Philippians 4:6-7
I have a hard time believing that anybody that goes out of their way to create disorder is following God’s direction. I do not believe that God sends people out into the world to create division. I do not believe we are called to interrupt worship services.
If we feel that our brother needs Godly correction we are called to do so in love and in private, “If your brother sins against you, go and confront him privately. If he listens to you, you have won your brother over. But if he will not listen, take one or two others along, so that ‘every matter may be established by the testimony of two or three witnesses.” – Matthew 18:15-16
Nobody is perfect. We all fall short. However, when we’re acting on God’s behalf we must take care to ensure that our behavior, words, and heart align with the word of God. There’s a lot at stake. We may lead someone away from God rather than to Him. We may mislead and misinform other believers.
Pray over your own thoughts and attitude. Listen to God. Whatever you do ask yourself, “Is this in alignment with who God is?” If it’s not I encourage you to reconsider what you’re doing.
For the hecklers and church disruptors, I ask you, are you standing in peace?

Right on Time

I hope you all have committed to our Journey through Proverbs!!  I pray that you are blessed through this reading and that we all grow a deeper knowledge and understanding of what the Lord is calling us to do, be and how to live.

My intention for this week’s blog was to write about what I hoped to gain from this journey, but God had a different plan!

No Cellphones, Cellphone Not Allowed

I will admit:  I usually use my phone when I am driving.  I know, I know…a big, HUGE no no!!  I am always working to just unplug and drive! Please pray for me regarding this matter, and I will pray for you just the same.

Today, I was not texting and driving…

I was on my way home from meeting with my professor at Texas Southern University about a 40-45 minute drive from my house.  I was coming up on the 610 merge when I saw a funeral procession on the southbound side. I’m from a relatively small city in Kentucky.  I’m sure you’ve heard of it…Lexington. You know, Wildcats…UK..#bigbluenation?!?! I digress…

Lexington is small, and we have small town customs.  Whenever a funeral procession passes you in Lexington (and I’m sure countless other places), the custom is to pull over or stop and turn the radio off until the hearse passes.  Because Houston is so big, it’s not really practical (or safe) to do, so I will usually turn my music down and say a prayer for the family. That’s just what I did today.

I can’t really say what happened after I prayed.  I obviously didn’t close my eyes, but I was somehow not focused on the road.  My mind was gone. Thinking about life and death always gives me pause.  The next thing I knew, however, I was going full speed into slowing traffic.  “Oh, God!” I yelled as I slammed on my brakes.  Because I was on the highway going at least probably 70 miles per hour, braking was not going to be sufficient.  I glanced in my side-view mirror and leaped over to the left lane.  I was panicked, and I didn’t want to hit the barrier.  My car was slowing down but still had some speed.  “Turn back…don’t hit the barrier,” I thought.  As I tried to correct my vehicle, maintain my lane, and not hit anyone, the car was kind of going out of control.  The “vehicle stability assistant” feature turned on and steadied my car.

You know why I quoted “vehicle stability assistant” right??? #ButGod I was safe; the other drivers were safe, and my vehicle was not damaged!!  I was full of adrenaline.  I immediately started thanking God!!  Praise break right in the car, right!  I know I was not on my phone, but my mind was in Lala Land.  My mind was, but God’s mind was right there with me!

It’s kind of crazy to think about how I would have slammed right into the back of the car at 70 miles per hour if I had not snapped back at that precise moment.  There was no other second to spare.  Although the experience was frightening, I thank God for giving me a warning that I really have to give up using my phone while driving.  I thank God for giving me that message to give to you.

Most of all, however, I thank God for loving me more than I love myself, for looking out for my safety even when I am not!

Next time, I’ll write about my experience with Proverbs.  This word could not wait!!

Thank you, God!


Take Your Best Shot; You Are Not God

red dart hitting the target

It was a September. Tuesday. Less than a week before my 30th birthday. It was a day that was supposed to break me, but didn’t. It was the day that I learned without a shadow of a doubt that God is on my side.

I had gotten a new boss at work a couple months prior and things weren’t working well. It was so bad, my teammate quit. She didn’t even put in two weeks notice. She didn’t have another job lined up. She just sent an email early one morning to say that she wouldn’t be back. Yes, it was that bad. I don’t blame her. I was contemplating up and leaving myself, but I have financial goals, so I didn’t.

Instead, I was attempting to change teams. I knew it wasn’t going to happen. I’m very analytical and perceptive. Some people might argue I’m over analytical. 🙂 I have this ability to read situations and people and decipher what’s not being said. I knew I was not going to be able to change teams because I knew the type of person my boss was. I even told my coworker, “She’s not going to let me change teams.” My coworker reassured me she would. “Den*, (the boss’ boss) isn’t going to let her stand in the way.”

I was hoping she was right, but my analytical brain was picking up on all sorts of things. The manager who was supposed to hire me onto her team would walk past me and stare at the TV screens on the wall so that she didn’t have to speak to me. I could sense a good friend of mine giving me a different energy. She didn’t want to tell me what she knew. There were more signs and wonders to analyze. I’ll save you the details.

It was Monday afternoon and a meeting invite popped into my inbox. It was for the next morning at 9 am with my boss and HR. “Tomorrow’s D-day,” I thought.

I had been feeling a bit let down by life lately. My grandmother had just passed away. An investment deal went way over budget even though I was doing a good thing. I used my talent. I didn’t bury it in the ground like the servant in Matthew 25. I also invited my family in. I shared my talent. Yet, I was feeling like I should have buried it. Now, I’m getting fired too. God, where are you?

So here I am driving home from work on the eve of Fire Charlene Day with recent heartbreaks weighing on me. I said to God, “I need to know if I can trust you. I need to know if I’m falling off the ledge or better yet someone is pushing me off, will you catch me?”

I went home that night, and I was antsy. I was nervous. I got to work a bit early the next day. I wanted to just get it over with. When I got to work I felt at peace. I thought maybe I was wrong. “Maybe I’m not getting fired today.” Well, I wasn’t wrong, and I did get fired that day. I went to my 9 am meeting and was fired. Not laid off with a severance package. I was fired as in all you get is a trip to the unemployment office. Yet, I was at peace, and I was relieved I didn’t have to go to that place another day.

I gathered my things and left the building with my head held high. I never shed a tear. I wasn’t hurt. I wasn’t discouraged. I was focused on my vacation. We were going on a cruise that Thursday to celebrate me and Marlene’s birthday. I went shopping for some last minute things. A few hours later I checked my email.

My now current employer emailed me at 9 am. Not 8:59. Not 9:01. The exact time that one door was closing another was opening. I knew in that moment God’s answer: “Yes, I will catch you.”

I like to think of this experience as my Joseph experience. Joseph’s brothers were jealous of him, because he was his father’s favorite and God had showed Joseph that his family would one day bow to him. He brothers wanted to kill him, but they ended up selling him into slavery to Ishmaelites headed to Egypt.

They thought they were preventing Joseph from reaching his destiny. They thought they could stop God’s plan. Long story short, a famine takes over the land. By this time, Joseph was put in charge of all of Egypt. He predicted that the famine was coming and lead Egypt to save food during a season of abundance.

When the famine came Joseph’s brothers had no food. Hearing that Egypt did, they made the trip. Genesis 42:6 says:

Now Joseph was the governor of the land, the person who sold grain to all its people. So when Joseph’s brothers arrived, they bowed down to him with their faces to the ground.

Joseph’s brothers ended up bowing to him after all. I love this story because it says that even when someone takes their best shot against you, they cannot stop God’s plan for your life. We don’t have to worry about what anyone does or threatens to do to us. They are not God.

When Joseph was met face to face with his brothers, he was not mad. He blessed them with silver. He embraced them. He said that it had to happen. “You intended to harm me, but God intended it for good to accomplish what is now being done, the saving of many lives.” Genesis 50:20

The other thing that I think is interesting about this story is that Joseph’s anointing wasn’t just for him. What if his brothers were successful? What if they did kill him? What if Joseph never got out of prison? Who would they have gotten food from? Would there have even been food to get?

We have to be careful when we despise other people. We have to guard our hearts against jealously and vengeful plots. Someone else’s blessing just might be our blessing too.

I now work in a great environment. My leaders are amazing. I tell them all the time, “If you leave, I’m leaving.” I’m so thankful to be where I am. Plus, it doesn’t hurt that my pay increased and my vacation days increased as well.

What was meant for my harm was simply the ushering in of a new opportunity, a new season. My former boss isn’t God. She can’t control if I have a job or not. It’s just an illusion. God is all powerful, all knowing and all in control.

*Name changed.

Satan tried to harm me, oh but God

Genesis 50:20 Contemporary English Version (CEV)
You tried to harm me, but God made it turn out for the best, so that he could save all these people, as he is now doing.

The first quarter of 2014 my life had taken a turn I didn’t see coming nor anticipate. My mom was diagnosed with an illness the beginning of 2013. I know God is a healer, so I immediately started knocking on heaven’s door. I called believers that I knew without a shadow of a doubt were prayer warriors. I have to admit God was active during her illness and it was evident. However, I soon had to face the fact that God is in control, but most importantly that God is a perfect God. He loves my mom and wanted her home. The middle of 2014, God called her home.

What I didn’t see lurking around the corner was I would be facing two deaths at the same time; death of my mother and death of my marriage. God, why are you doing this to me? My heart was already aching, how could I possible deal with another trauma situation; why now?

I knocked at heaven’s door once more: God save my marriage. I truly thought my marriage would turn around before I laid my mom to rest but it didn’t.

As I wrestled trying to make sense of my life, God was not only tugging at my heart, He was drawing me near to Him.  God hates divorces, Malachi 2:16 tell us so. I read the Word. I believe it. So God, why are doing this to me? It wasn’t until many months later that God told me this situation wasn’t from Him but he would use it for the best. What did that mean? For who’s best?  I knew He had to have a plan.

So who was trying to harm me at one of the most difficult season of my life? I never thought my ex was out to harm me.  It just never felt like he was purposefully trying to add insult to injury.  During this time, however, I really worked at seeking God’s face and studying His word.  I additionally read and studied other Christian writings.  It was during my study of The Armor of God by Pricilla Shirer that I learned exactly who was trying to harm me: Satan.

I had to actually sit down and go over the events that had taken place months prior. Things came to my mind as if they happened yesterday. Satan had been studying me. Just like Job, Satan wanted me. Even though I was not the Christian I should have been Satan knew I was anointed for greatness. I didn’t have a perfect marriage, but I had a great marriage. We were close, but we had a thorn that we didn’t address at all. As Satan was studying me, he also studied my marriage. He knew when to attack and how. Satan saw me at the darkest season of my life, and he threw confusion on top of an aching heart to cause me harm. Rather than talking,my ex and I separated, and the rest is history.

Satan thought the death of my mom and the death of my marriage would send me cursing God. He tried to cause me harm. What Satan didn’t factor in was that I was raised in a Christian home.

Train up a child [a]in the way she should go, Even when she is old she will not depart from it. Proverbs 22:6

I’ve been in church all my life and even though I wasn’t fully committed, I knew the Word of God and I knew how and when to call on Him. Satan tried to take my mind and lead me down a road of depression and to lose all hope. He tried to harm me, oh but God.

I serve an all powerful God and I know He could have stopped my divorce procedures, especially because His will is not to have marriages broken apart.  As I dug in the Word, I found out God could turn this nightmare into the best, so He could save all these people, as he is now doing. God had a plan for my good and His glory.

Before God could execute his plan for my life, He had to do some work on me first. He changed hearts throughout the bible.  He changed the hearts Jonah, Pharaoh, and Saul just to name a few. Just like He changed their hearts to accomplish what He wanted them to do, I knew He was a heart changer for me as well.

After God got my full attention, He began working on my heart. I needed a spiritual heart transplant and slowly God was changing my heart right before my eyes.

“I will give you a new heart [Juanita] and put a new spirit in you; I will remove from you your heart of stone and give you a heart of flesh,” Ezekiel 36:26.

I was still on the potter’s wheel when God put it in my heart to find a new church home. When I first moved to Houston, I would always see a commercial from Fallbrook Church. I visited the church one Sunday and joined the following Sunday. Upon joining Fallbrook, I immediately began working in two ministries (something I had never done before). My passion is sharing God’s Word and helping women. Currently I serve in the prison ministry where I visit prisons speaking to women who are incarnated. I wasn’t sure about speaking in front of a crowd and wanted to watch others first. God had other plans.

My first visit I gave my first presentation, and it felt as if I had been speaking for years, it was all God and none of me. God has further opened the door for my daughters and I to share His Word with the Facebook community. Before my youngest daughter approached me with the idea of a blog, God had already placed in my heart to share His Word. I just didn’t know where to begin.

This was a dark season in my life, the death of my marriage was was sent by Satan to discourage me but it did the opposite, it helped me to put God first. God used this divorce to turn out the best, so that he could save all these people, as he is now doing.

I am strong and very courageous; I am victorious.

God means it ALL for good


Bible, Old Bible, Christianity, Pages


The focus of our next series is centered on Genesis 50:20.

The King James Version reads: But as for you, ye thought evil against me; but God meant it unto good, to bring to pass, as it is this day, to save much people alive.

I like the Holman Christian Standard Bible’s translation:

“You planned evil against me; God planned it for good to bring about the present result–the survival of many people.”

I began my career in public education as a classroom teacher directly after graduating from college, and I was good at it.  Prior to becoming a teacher, I toyed with the idea of going to law school.  I wasn’t ready or prepared when I graduated undergrad, so I decided to teach while I took time to figure things out.  Well, turns out that I really loved teaching and public education.  After working for a year, I returned to school to get my Master’s of Education.

The beginning of my career was uneventful for the most part.  I loved what I was doing; my students were achieving, and I had developed some close friendships.  There was one, tiny, little thorn in my side though: my department chair.  On the surface, she was a fun and helpful mentor who just wanted the best for her team of teachers and students.  It turned out to only be a facade, and I found her to be indescribably mean and underhanded.

The truth was that she didn’t want anyone to do well, and she secretly thrived off of creating problems and manipulating situations.  I had, for the most part, been able to continue to work with her because I realized after a while that it wasn’t me or any inadequacy I possessed.  It was her and her need to feel grand by making others small.

When I came to this realization, the way I handled our encounters changed.  I no longer got upset or panicked when she came to me with a complaint.  I simply acknowledged and carried on.  She hated I was not being sucked in to her drama and upset by it anymore.  As a result of her mounting frustration over her lost ability to upset or stress me, after five years of working together, I was moved out of the department to a reading lab position that is usually reserved for those not as effective in the regular classroom or the veterans of the building who have “paid their dues.”  It was counterproductive to what I was trying to accomplish long term…remember: I went back to school to get my Master’s after my first year in the classroom.

It was counterproductive to what we were trying to accomplish as a school, as a profession. Here it is we want our kids to do well and pass the state tests so that our schools can be deemed “effective”. (The high-stakes testing and accountability environment that exists today is a conversation for another day.) Yet, my principal moved me from a classroom teaching environment to an elective that no one valued. I had been extremely effective with all groups of students in that position. They needed me there, but my principal decided otherwise. I’m sure he was under pressure from the department chair. It felt like a setback. And that’s not to say the elective is not a necessary class, but I was young in my career and that kind of experience just doesn’t cut the mustard in a highly competitive promotion pool.  Or so i thought……

I just about shouted thinking about this entire situation and how God knew the plans He had for me from the very beginning (Read more about my favorite verse: Jeremiah 29:11 here.) .  He KNEW the plans so what she planned against me never had a chance to prevail.  In fact, God meant it ALL for GOOD!!

Soon after I was told I was changing subjects, I became keenly aware of what that meant for my future.  I couldn’t help but to imagine interviewing against math, science, and reading teachers with testing data to quantify their effectiveness.  BUT…..GOD!!!!

The next year, we got a new principal, and I found favor with him.  I made him aware of my intentions to advance, and he gave me every single opportunity to learn and grow my leadership skills. The change in position and leadership, came with a title.  After the year started, I became the RtI Coordinator.  The responsibilities of that role came with an extra “off” period, and that extra period gave me all the time I needed to be available to gain experiences that would prepare me for leadership.

The next two years were all about my growth and development.  As a result of the change in assignment, I moved to the other side of the building from my former department chair, and although I was still teaching reading, I was not in her department anymore.  I never had to see or speak with her.  I was not longer impacted by her antics.

So yeah, God meant it for good.  God meant it for good.  GOD meant it for GOOD!!!!!!!  He meant it for good to bring about the survival of me.  He meant if for good to bring about the survival of you.

The Vision is for the Appointed Time


Clock, Time, Stand By

“For the vision is yet for an appointed time, but at the end it shall speak, and not lie: though it tarry, wait for it; because it will surely come, it will not tarry.” – Habakkuk 2:3

If you read my last post you may recall me saying that I had the faith of the mustard seed, but the mountain didn’t move. Habakkuk 2:3 is my favorite bible verse. It adds an important and encouraging word to the sentence I just wrote. “Yet.”

The mountain hasn’t moved, yet.

I love this verse because I tend to be a person of vision. I am always visualizing a better future for myself and my family. Although I move towards my vision,  it always seems so far away.

This verse is encouraging because it lets me know that there is an appointed time for my vision. I shouldn’t give up. I’d like to break down my interpretation of Habakkuk 2:3:

For the vision is yet for an appointed time There is a date and time somewhere in the future with the answers to my prayers already stamped.

but at the end it shall speak, and not lie – I can trust the dreams that God has placed into my heart. I trust the vision, the intuition, and the perfect peace that leads me. It will not lie.

though it tarry, wait for it – This word tarry means delays. There will be some delays. Delayed is not no. It’s just not right now. And when I experience these delays my only responsibility is to wait. Not doubt. Not detour. Just wait.

because it will surely come, it will not tarry – This needs no explanation. It will  surely come and will not be late.

2 Corinthians 12:9

2 Corinthians 12:9 New Living Translation
Each time he said, “My grace is all you need. My power works best in weakness.” So now I am glad to boast about my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ can work through me.


As slowly as 2014 crept in, it seemed to creep out just as slowly; I don’t believe the sun ever shined that year. I was left with a mountain of questions without answers. I played over and over all the decisions I had made in my life, trying to find the clues to the missing puzzle and which wrong road I turned on.
I spent time reading all that I could, searching and searching. What I know now is this: God is in control.  He always has been, always will be. I could muster up question after question, but in the end the answers no longer matter. I had to wake up and realize just who God is. If I believed in God, I also had to believe that He is sovereign, period.
As I longed for God, I knew I could find everything I need through Him and with Him. I recall one day in late 2014 getting off the phone saying “God’s grace is sufficient.”  As long as I was wrestling trying to make sense of my life, I would continue to wander in the desert. I had to surrender to the one who is the Creator of life. I had to let God be God and the finished work of the cross be true to me. God is more than able to wipe my eyes. God is more than able to mend my broken heart. God is more than able to give me a clear mind. God is able.
My dark days in 2014 came at no surprise to God; He already knew the events of my life well before the day I was born.  God was thinking about me before the foundation of the world.  He was also ordering my steps. How many know God will get you where He wants you to be?
Romans 8:28 became a scripture that gave me hope, it breathe life into my dying spirit, and I became excited about my future because God said He would use my pain, my past for my good and for His glory. This experience has pushed me into the arms of The Man that I love with all my heart.

2 Corinthians 12:9 became one of my favorite scriptures because God placed it on my heart during my time in the desert. God’s grace is all that I need. It was in my weakest moments that His powers worked best.

It was God’s power that I was able to put my pending divorce procedures on the back burner and care for the woman who cared for me when I was a baby. It was an honor and a privilege to take care of my mom during her last days here on earth. My mom had taken care of others her entire life, and she needed all of me, and I needed all of her. God gave me what I needed to be completely present with her.  This was all God and none of me. If I had my way, I would have found that rock. God’s grace was all I needed to plan her homecoming and lay her body to rest. It brings me tears as I write this blog, but I know God doesn’t want me crying and neither does she. Her body is at rest but she’s in heaven, this I know. This weak vessel can do nothing on her own.
It is because of God’s grace that I was able to endure one of the toughest years of my life and can now share my story with the world. First and foremost, I love The Lord, and secondly I want Satan to know he doesn’t have a hold on me.
I’m a warrior now. My girls need me.  My son needs me, and my family needs me to go to battle with them and for them. I am victorious because of what Jesus did for me on the cross. He said, “It is finished,” and that settles it.  God’s grace is sufficient!