The first step…

Happy Saturday! I hope this finds you in great health and even greater spirits. This post is long overdue and I want to start by saying I am well. My hiatus was a lesson for me to learn. At the beginning of the year, I knew that March and April would be busy months for me and I made a decision that I would put the blog on hold and start back writing in May. May led to June, June to July and here we are ten months after my last post. I don’t even know who is still here with me. For a few weeks now the blog has been on my mind and I have been a bit anxious about it because I didn’t know where to begin. Today I felt a nudge to start writing and I am trying to be obedient.

I know I am not the only one who had a lot to deal with this year. Most of what I dealt with was actually pleasant and good. It just felt like the buildup to the holidays every month. As one experience was over, there was something else. So much so that I have not really indulged in my wins or been able to wallow in my losses. My mindset was focused on getting through the next ‘thing’ and the next ‘thing’ after that. Spiritually, I have always struggled with giving things to God and relying on Him instead of myself. In April I took part in our Carnival as a vendor, which was an intense two weeks. I was proud of myself for maintaining a close relationship with God throughout that. Although it may seem weird to read Carnival in the same sentence with God, I received a message and vision and I followed through. I had a horrible toothache the entire time and barely slept as I worked with my parents from 9 AM until about 3 PM and then went into the booth for Carnival around 6 PM and didn’t leave until 2 or 3 AM. Trust me, I was weak and I turned to God and He sustained me. Of that, I am sure.

2 Corinthians 12:9, NIV: But he said to me, ‘My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness. ‘ Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ’s power may rest on me.

It was a great experience but there was loss and disappointment associated with that experience and I believe that stopped me from writing as well because I needed time to process what was happening. After that I was focused on my kids and getting my daughter ready to travel to New York for her dance intensive program. I was also trying to check more things off of my to do list and I was able to check a few. I was also focused on my finances, reducing debt and investing in myself and my business. I left New York a few days early to work on a festival and then it was time to get ready for back to school. My dog then had puppies at the end of August and taking care of 11 dogs has been hectic. Luckily, I am down to 6 as the others found homes. Simply put, life was life-ing. Although I did maintain a relationship with God, I can be honest and say that these past couple of months it was not as close as I would have liked it. One of my flaws is relying on myself when things get hectic.

Last month I took a look at my year and I am proud of all that I have accomplished but it was also a reminder to get focused on God again. I believe that can be intimidating because you know you should do better and then you don’t feel worthy but those are lies. God wants a relationship with us, a close one. Seasons of our lives may change and our relationships fluctuate as well. God is asking us for a perfect relationship, He is asking us to continually seek Him. He knows we are flawed yet He loves us. Just like in the garden, He doesn’t want us to hide from Him. Once we realized we have strayed from Him, we need only to turn to Him, repent, ask forgiveness and start moving towards Him again. Straying does not necessarily mean going back to a life of sin and wild abandonment. It could simply mean not spending enough time with Him or not surrendering our hearts fully to Him.

As we near the end of the year and you do your audit of the past months, do not forget to check your relationship with God. If you are satisfied with your relationship then continue to maintain it. If you aren’t happy with it, this is your reminder that you can improve it every day. Find comfort in His word.

Lamentations 3 :22-23 – The Lord’s love never ends; His mercies never stop. They are new every morning.

You can never stray too far from the Lord. He is patient and He is waiting for you to come to Him. The first step is the hardest but it is worth it. I pray this holiday season treats you well. As always, you got this!

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