“More Than Intended”

Have you ever had one of those moments where right in the middle of doing something, the Holy Spirit uses that very moment/situation to bring much needed clarity or revelation about something you may have been praying about for months? Or maybe he used a moment in your daily routine to bring attention to something that maybe you’ve just overlooked in the business of your day-to-day schedule. Well sis, that DEFINITELY happened to me today! If you have time to read on, I’d love to share more about it.

Today, after having a beautiful evening time of fellowship at Panera with a good friend of mine, Holy Spirit reminded me on my way home that I needed to stop and get toothpaste. So, to the nearest Wal-Mart I go… with the intention of ONLY buying toothpaste. Now ladies, (and guys too) we all know how it goes… You go in to get one thing, and you end up with a cart full of stuff that you did not plan on getting; and more importantly, that your wallet was not originally consulted about! Well let me tell you, I was so set on only buying toothpaste, that grabbing a buggy/cart never even crossed my mind.

So down the aisle I go. I grab my favorite toothpaste, and then I’m fini—- “but wait… there’s that new body wash… hmmm, I’ll just grab one and try it out… I saw on the commercials that it was really great for dry skin!” Now I have two things in my hand. Then… “hmmm since I’m here, I should probably grab some coffee too… makes sense instead of stopping at the gas station each morning, right?” Now, I have three things in my hand. Still manageable to hold, so its fine. And then… “Well, I can’t have coffee without cream, and I think my dad used the last of what we had left sooooo, let me grab some of that too.” Buy this time, my arms are full and I literally have no more arm space to carry anything else. And yet… “Hmmm I wonder if they have those Chobani Flips Yogurt things I like!!” And with an arm-full of pretty heavy items, I STILL manage (barely) to make over to the yogurt cooler and grab not one… but SIX yogurt cups! HA!! Now mind you… I did not have a cart…

So now, I have a bottle of body wash, a box of Medium Roast Coffee K-cups, a 22oz bottle of creamer, six cups of yogurt, and oh yeah… that 2-pack value box of toothpaste somewhere at the bottom of my arm-full pile. By now, the yogurt cups are literally stacked up to my chin, and as I’m leaving the cooler section, one of them slipped, but somehow I managed to pick it back up. As I’m walking away, heading towards the checkout line… this gentle, still, small voice speaks to my heart and says, got a lot going on there don’t you?” Stunned a little at first, I then began to laugh, because I immediately thought about how crazy I must have looked with yogurt stacked to my chin, walking ever-so carefully not to drop what looked like a game of Tetris gone completely wrong (haha). But then suddenly, that simple question spoken to my heart caused my focus shift, as the Holy Spirit brought a few areas of my life to mind. In that moment I knew that my heavy arm-full of items was not the only thing He was referring to…

Just like all that I was juggling in that moment at Wal-Mart, the Holy Spirit quickly used that instance to show me a parallel picture of what this season has felt like… juggling an arm-full of things, honestly more than was originally intended. Sometimes, we find ourselves agreeing to and taking on so much stuff (opportunities, extra-obligations, etc.) that are “good-things”, but may not necessarily be “God-things”. You see, the yogurt, creamer, body wash, etc. were all “good things” but in the purpose of the trip to Wal-Mart to get toothpaste only, they were not “God-things”.

In life, we often find ourselves like I did; carrying a bunch of obligations, loads, and “yes’s” that may not have been the original intent. But I want to share a bible verse that my friend so timely shared with me at dinner, minutes before this confirming Wal-mart trip took place:

Galatians 1:10 (NIV) – “Am I now trying to win the approval of human beings, or of God? Or am I still trying to please people? If I were still trying to please people, I would not be a servant of Christ.”

Talk about “ouch!” This scripture cut me a kinda deep. How  many times have I said “yes” to things that seemed good, but were outside of God’s intended plan for me. Things that often became distractions against the very thing that the Holy Spirit is wanting me to focus on… How about you?

In ALL Things, we must be careful that our actions don’t become mere works that may please man/seem like the right thing to do; but that we seek God in a way that leads us to do and take on what is of His leading. As a “Good, Good Father”, He will always lead, we just have to be willing to follow.

 

Lord, I pray that we as your daughters (and sons), will take every load and heavy weight, and lay it at your feet. As we cast our cares on you, give us the wisdom to know whats important. In Jesus name,

Amen.

God Bless!

Heyyy 2018!!

HAPPY NEW YEAR!!!! “Out with the old, in with the NEW!!” New Beginnings, New Vision, a NEW thing! Yesterday at our New Years Eve service, my pastor said to us in his sermon, “turn around and look over you right shoulder… now face forward. Now turn around and look over your left shoulder… wave “Bye Felicia” to 2017!!” He told us to say #ByeFelicia to 2017! While this was funny as I’m sure we all have heard or have probably   used that popular phrase, it really brought everything into perspective. While 2017 was a blessing, it definitely brought forth many challenges and trials. But because of God’s amazing grace, nothing could stop me from praising my Lord and Savior Jesus Christ, knowing that He would never forsake me! I am so grateful for all of the preparation that came through much transition in 2017. I know it was all to prepare me for the Greatness that God has in-store for 2018!

This morning, the “verse of the day” on the Bible App was Isaiah 43:19 which reads, ” Behold, I will do a new thing, Now it shall spring forth; Shall you not know it? I will even make a road in the wilderness and rivers in the desert.” Such confirmation came from this scripture because each year symbolizes a new chance, or “clean canvas” for us to paint our dreams and ambitions. Another chance to get it done!

So this year, let’s make it great!! As the New springs forth, lets seize it with all we’ve got! Let’s give God our best as He always does for us. I’m declaring that the comfort zones be shattered this year, and that we walk in our callings and purposes under the anointing of  the Holy Spirit! We SHALL walk in the authority that was invested in us through the  salvation of Jesus Christ!!

We. Are. Daughters. Of. THE. KING!! We are royals, and this year, we SHALL walk in that identity!! 

So 2017… “Bye Felicia!!!!!”,  2018… Let’s do this!!!

 

 

A Father’s Wisdom

Anyone who knows me, knows that I truly love my dad SO much! I am probably the epitome of a “Daddy’s Girl”. Its has been that way since I was a little girl. Even at the age of 5, I can vividly recall sitting cramped up beside him in his recliner as we watched TBN (Trinity Broadcasting Network) for hours; praising, praying, and watching sermons. My dad is truly a daughter’s blessing.

However, once I hit my teenage years, this “Daddy’s Girl” started to change. I started “smelling myself” as the older church mothers would say, and grew into a bad, rebellious attitude, accompanied by a sassy mouth. During this time, I saw my dad as my enemy because of all the things “I wasn’t allowed to do”. While friends were going buck-wild on the weekends in high school, I was at the annual Friday Night church shut-in, followed by choir rehearsal the next morning. While the other kids could spend the night and hang with whomever they pleased, I had a select few that were “approved” by my parents. Looking back, I was pretty angry and frustrated with such strictness; but now that I am older, that anger has turned into deep, sincere gratitude from a heart that is appreciative beyond words!

The 24 year old Richarra understands now, what the 13 – 16 year old Richarra failed to understand… my dad’s purpose and heart behind his strict rules and teachings were to protect me from the mess, filth, and unnecessary trouble of this world. While I could have rebelled and messed up big time if I really wanted to, I didn’t because deep down that “daddy’s girl” still respected him enough to fear the consequences. His fatherly intentions for me were to lay out a wise foundation that when I grow old I would not depart from (as instructed in Proverbs 22:6). While going through it, I thought he was just being a “mean ol’ dad”, but now, I can testify that the wisdom he and my mom sought to instill in me through the Holy Spirit, has never left my side… In fact, I often still hear his wise teachings play over in my head during testing situations or times of decision making. While very hard to hear at the time, I know that it was in love and protection of my future.

Much like my earthly father seeks to protect me, so does our Heavenly Father seek to do so on a much grander scale! Sisters, our Abba Father God LOVES you and I so much that saw fit to send His ONLY son, Jesus Christ to die for our sin; a price that He did not owe! And through His death, burial, and resurrection, we are alive and redeemed through His gift of salvation! But we must understand that through salvation, and on this Christian walk, we must follow the guidelines and choose to do what is clearly outlined in His Holy Word (The Holy Bible). Our Father wants us to live our best life in Him, but in order to do so, we must obey His Word; knowing that His restrictions and Commandments are there for our best interest, and to ensure that we live in-step and in-tuned with the Holy Spirit.

Psalm 119:105 says, “Your word is a lamp unto my feet, and a light unto my path.” So in all things, it is His wisdom that will guide us on this journey, and as His daughters, it is His Will that we should seek. Our Abba Father God knows all, and in the counsel of His wisdom, we are safe.

God Bless! ❤