Tag Archives: Fear

Letting Go Of Excess Baggage And Speaking Life To Your Dry Bones

Hey y’all! Hope all my TOG readers are doing great! Another beautiful hot day here in Bama.

So much has been going on in my heart lately, dealing with things and issues from my childhood, past, and present. Things that have made me who I am today. But I realize those things don’t have to keep me broken and stuck in the past. They may have had a hand in who I am but they DO NOT DEFINE ME!

In a counseling session this week, as we were going over my life timeline, and wow that’s a job let me just say. As she would repeat back to me my timeline and the things that have happened to me, I could hear it but it was hard to feel some of it. I don’t know if that makes sense or not? I’d think “Wow, yea that really did happen to me” “Oh and that too, and that too” but I’ve tried so hard in my life to shove things down and not feel the pain or emotions of life, maybe you can relate?

For me, if something happened you couldn’t talk about it….it may hurt a family member or make them angry….forget that it hurt you. That was the message I heard.

Then if you did, your feelings were wrong and not relative. So what does one do especially when you’re a child? Well, you quickly learn what’s acceptable and what’s not and then you learn to SHOVE DOWN EVERYTHING ELSE!

For me an eating disorder developed, it was something I could control, or so I thought.

I carried shame and guilt for things that had been done to me, and later things I had done. But it wasn’t mine to carry, neither is it yours sweet friend.

I have felt alone, numb, unworthy, unloved, unwanted, wrong, insecure, the list can go on and on. Maybe you feel those thing right now. You are not alone precious one, you are in good company. God is with you and He loves you at your darkest! He isn’t scared off by your brokenness, He is just waiting for you to invite Him in.

https://nikhop320.wordpress.com/2018/11/12/i-loved-you-at-your-darkest/

ARE YOU CARRYING THINGS IN YOUR LIFE THAT DON’T BELONG TO YOU?

  • Guilt.
  • Shame
  • Regret
  • Resentment/Unforgiveness
  • Habits/Addictions
  • Anger
  • Past Relationships
  • Stress
  • Worry
  • Anxiety
  • Fear

“And He caused me to pass round about among them, and behold , there were VERY many (human bones) in the open valley or plain, and behold, they were very dry. He said to me, Son of Man can these bones lives? And I answered O Lord God, You know!! Again He said to me, Prophesy to these dry bones and SAY to them, O you dry bones, HEAR THE WORD OF THE LORD. Ezekiel 37:2-4

As I’m on this journey of restoration with God, I’ve realized some things.

One, I’m not alone in this.

Two, I have to let go of the things (or people) I cannot change…I am powerless to fix it but My God is NOT! My God is BIGGER!

And three, the things that need changing, the dry places in my soul….I have to Let Go and Let God.

There’s No Way Around Pain…Feel It And Move Through It

Today, I can say I’m doing a new thing! I don’t always get it right, but thank God I’m not where I use to be.

Those dry places in my soul and in my life, I’m choosing to feel them, be more vulnerable, and speak life to them. You can do the same thing my friend.

If you need something in your life to change, let me remind you when you let God in ALL THINGS ARE POSSIBLE! Healing and restoration are possible and I’ll even go as far to say it’s inevitable. Because where God is, there is LIFE and there is FREEDOM!

There is life and death in the power of your tongue! Speak LIFE!

The same power that raised Christ from the dead, lives IN YOU!!

Speak God’s word out of your mouth every day and call those things that be not as though they are!! Get in agreement with God’s promises!! Your life and circumstances WILL CHANGE!!

Prophesy to those dry bones!! And keep prophesying till what is dead comes to life. Don’t you dare give up!!

God bless you! I’m praying for y’all and I’d love to hear from you.

Big hugs,

Nicole💗

Jesus! Name Above All Names

“Therefore God exalted him to the highest place and gave him the name that is above every name..” Philippians 2:9

Jesus! Name above ALL names!

There is POWER IN THE NAME OF JESUS. Your problems MUST bow to the name of JESUS!

Whatever is troubling your heart, whatever trial….if it has a name my friend then it must bow to the name of Jesus!

Cancer must bow to the name of Jesus.

Alcoholism, drug addiction must bow to the name of Jesus.

Poverty must bow to the name of Jesus.

Guilt and shame must bow to the name of Jesus.

Sickness and disease must bow to the name of Jesus

Fear must bow to the name of Jesus.

If you are sick, pray and declare “by His stripes you are healed.” Sickness must go in the name of Jesus. Declare the cleansing, healing blood of Jesus is flowing through your body right now. Declare that your body come in alignment with Gods word. You may not see it or feel…yet….but keep speaking it out loud every single day and believe in your heart that it is done.

If you have a loved one with an addiction….keep praying for them every day! Speak the word over them. Declare they are FREE and they have the mind of Christ. We have to keep in mind with something like this, yes, there is free will but your prayers are POWERFUL, you are speaking into the atmosphere life and freedom for someone. The angels can’t help but move into action on this persons behalf. Pray for divine connections and that God would place the perfect laborers in their path, people that they can hear and relate too. Keep praying that God would open their eyes and heart to what He has for them.

This one falls inline with the above one as well. If you have a loved one who continues to make bad decisions, the best thing you can do is STOP ENABLING THEM. When we rescue people from the consequences of their choices and behavior….YOU ARE NOT HELPING THEM. You are only prolonging the problem. They need to feel the consequences of their actions. They need to figure out how to fix their own problems and situations they’ve created.

How else can they grow up when you’re doing everything for them?

AND YES, it’s painful and yes it’s hard but if you truly love them then let them face themselves and their problems. Allow God to do what only He can do.

Just a few of the Names Of Jesus:

Almighty One  “…who is and who was and who is to come, the Almighty.” Rev. 1:8

Alpha and Omega  “I am the Alpha and the Omega, the First and the Last, the Beginning and the End.” Rev. 22:13

Advocate – “My dear children, I write this to you so that you will not sin. But if anybody does sin, we have an advocate with the Father–Jesus Christ, the Righteous One.” 1 John 2:1

Author and Perfecter of Our Faith “Fixing our eyes on Jesus, the author and perfecter of faith, who for the joy set before Him endured the cross, despising the shame, and has sat down at the right hand of the throne of God.” Heb. 12:2

Authority  “Jesus said, ‘All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me.” Matt. 28:18

Deliverer – “And to wait for his Son from heaven, whom he raised from the dead, Jesus who delivers us from the wrath to come.” 1 Thess.1:10

Good Shepherd  “I am the good shepherd. The good shepherd lays down his life for the sheep.” John 10:11

Great High Priest  “Therefore, since we have a great high priest who has passed through the heavens, Jesus the Son of God, let us hold fast our confession.” Heb. 4:14

I Am  “Jesus said to them, “Truly, truly, I say to you, before Abraham was, I am.” John 8:58

Immanuel  “…She will give birth to a son and will call him Immanuel, which means ‘God with us.’” Is. 7:14

King of Kings  “These will wage war against the Lamb, and the Lamb will overcome them, because He is Lord of lords and King of kings, and those who are with Him are the called and chosen and faithful.” Rev. 17:14

Lamb of God – “The next day John saw Jesus coming toward him and said, “Look, the Lamb of God, who takes away the sin of the world!” John 1:29

Light of the World  “I am the light of the world. Whoever follows me will never walk in darkness, but will have the light of life.” John 8:12

Lion of the Tribe of Judah  “Weep no more; behold, the Lion of the tribe of Judah, the Root of David, has conquered, so that he can open the scroll and its seven seals.” Rev. 5:5

Messiah  “We have found the Messiah” (that is, the Christ).” John 1:41

Mighty One  “Then you will know that I, the Lord, am your Savior, your Redeemer, the Mighty One of Jacob.” Is. 60:16

One Who Sets Free  “So if the Son sets you free, you will be free indeed.”  John 8:36

Our Hope  “…Christ Jesus our hope.” 1 Tim. 1:1

Peace  “For he himself is our peace, who has made the two groups one and has destroyed the barrier, the dividing wall of hostility,” Eph. 2:14

Redeemer  “And as for me, I know that my Redeemer lives, and at the last He will take His stand on the earth.” Job 19:25

Rock  “For they drank from the spiritual Rock that followed them, and the Rock was Christ.” 1 Cor. 10:4

Savior  “For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Savior, who is Christ the Lord.” Luke 2:11

Son of Man  “For the Son of Man came to seek and to save the lost.” Luke 19:10

Resurrection and the Life  “Jesus said to her, “I am the resurrection and the life. The one who believes in me will live, even though they die.” John 11:25

The Way  “Jesus answered, “I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.” John 14:6

Victorious One  “To the one who is victorious, I will give the right to sit with me on my throne, just as I was victorious and sat down with my Father on his throne.” Rev. 3:21

Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace  “For to us a child is born, to us a son is given, and the government will be on his shoulders. And he will be called Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace.” Is. 9:6

All this…and soooo much more!

Whatever your going through, whatever trials….Jesus is BIGGER my friend!

Be anxious for nothing….“Anxiety is a signal alerting you that it’s time to pray.” Craig Groeschel

When I say Jesus, the very mention shatters the darkness and calms my soul. When I say Jesus even a whisper breaks through my doubting till all my fear is gone.” Life.Church Worship

Have a blessed day!

Big hugs,

Nicole 💗

Jesus, You Alone -Highlands Worship

Holy, all the earth singing
Holy, all the angels cry
Holy, Jesus, You alone
Worthy, all creation sings
Worthy, all the heavens
Exalt Thee, Jesus, You alone
Holy, all the earth singing
Holy, all the angels cry
Holy, Jesus, You alone
Can we lift our voices and sing?
Worthy, all creation sings
Worthy, all the heavens
Exalt Thee, Jesus, You alone

https://youtu.be/tejMgeDWIpg

America Will Never Forget

September 11th is a day America will never forget. I remember exactly where I was and what I was doing when I saw the news. I bet you do too. I was stunned, scared, heartbroken….I couldn’t believe what my eyes were witnessing. This simply couldn’t happen in America?!?!

Sean and I had to the opportunity go to New York in January and I will say so far New York has been my most favorite trip we’ve ever done. I love NYC!

The day we got there we new the first thing we wanted to do first was the 9/11 Memorial Museum. I didn’t know what to expect but it was by far the most emotional, humbling, surreal thing I’ve ever done. Standing there at ground zero, where nearly 3000 people lost their lives. Such an eerie feeling, it’s almost as though you can still hear their cries.

I know I’m an emotional person anyways but if you’ve never visited the 9/11 Memorial I think it’s a must do for every American.

The 9/11 Memorial and Museum occupies like 8 acres of the original WTC site. As we slowly walked through taking in all the thousands and thousands of images, artifacts, pictures, all the audio, the phone calls to loved ones, and news accounts of what had taken place became overwhelming to me. I wept all the way through….quietly sobbing the closer to the end we got. My heart was forever touched and more broken, standing there where it all happened. Knowing those precious people woke up that morning just like every other morning and expected to see their families and friends when they got off work but it would be a different day…because evil came to visit America. It came and took American lives. It came to destroy us.

There’s no denying that there is evil in this world but the Light will always overcome the darkness. So while it came to visit us here in America…it hadn’t destroyed us, in reality it united us and made us stronger.

So many stories of of heroic events took place. Those Americans who took over the plane, to those who lost there lives helping others out of the Towers, all first responders, firefighters, police officers, EMT’s, military personnel. So many stories of courage and love.

Evil doe not prevail!

(Above photo taken from internet)

Seeing the “Survivors Stairs” is something I will never forget seeing. This was the last visible remaining original structure above ground level at the WTC site. Such a sad, courageous and powerful sight to see.

(Photo above was taken from the internet)

May we never forget those whose lives that were taken and those whose gave their lives to help others live.

The Lord heals the broken-hearted and binds up their wounds💙❤️🙏🏻🇺🇸

God bless you!

Nicole

Come To The Altar

Hey y’all! Hope everyone is doing great. I’m enjoying a day at home with my oldest daughter, it’s a NO SNOW😭 snow day. We’ve been watching When Calls The Heart and enjoyed some hot chocolate. Sure wish we were out playing in the snow but in Alabama this is what you get, LOL. Unplanned time together is the best even when you just chill! 💗

So how are you my friend? Is there anything you are you holding onto? Is there something weighing on your heart that you need to let go of?

Have you come to the altar today?

Journaling is a very healthy way to bring things out of the darkness and into the light. You may not be ready to share it with others and that’s ok but just writing it down and getting it out is so healthy. Even if you write it out, confess it to God and throw it away its just a healthy healing process. Remember Psalm 32:3 “When I keep silent about my sin, my bones began to weaken because of my groaning all day long.”

Are you feeling any of these?

Tired, broken, hurting, hopeless, happy, anxious, empty, lost, full of fear, full of love, joyful, sick, shame, hope, rejection, worried, searching to fill a void, blessed, happy, confused, etc

Today’s Challenge:

Are you ready to really dig in and get FREE?

To walk in the freedom God has planned for you? It’s time to lay it ALL on the altar, all your feelings, everything you’re holding onto, secret sin, bring who you are, what you’re not and what you want to be….bring it ALL precious one. It’s time to take off the mask. Come to the altar and lay it all at the foot of the Cross.

Living in the Word:

Romans 4:17 “…Call those things that be not as though they are.”

Matthew 11:28 “Come to Me, all you who labor and are heavy laden and overburdened, and I will cause you to rest. I will ease and relieve and refresh your souls.”

Isaiah 61:3 To grant consolation and joy to those who mourn in Zion—to give YOU an ornament of beauty instead of ashes, the oil of joy instead of mourning, the garmet of praise instead of a heavy, burdened, and failing spirit—that YOU may be called Oaks of Righteousness…..

Renewing the Mind:

Psalm 37:4 Delight yourself also in the Lord, and He will give you the desires and secret petitions of your heart.

Psalm 39:7 And now, Lord, what do I wait for and expect? My hope and expectation is in You.

What God says about you:

I love YOU just the way you are! YOU don’t have to get all fixed up to come to Me. YOU are My priceless treasure, My special masterpiece. YOU are NOT a mistake, no I created YOU on purpose. Bring your burdens to Me, there is NOTHING to big and NOTHING I can’t handle. Trust Me precious one, expect and believe and you will see just what I can do in your life. I have great and mighty plans for YOU! Ephesians 3:20

Song of the Week:

“O Come To The Altar” Elevation Worship

Joy Unspeakable

When it rains it pours right? Gosh I’ve been there, not a fun place. Not like the fake rain in this picture, lol. But I can honestly say In His presence is fullness of joy. Psalm 16:11

My friend, if you are saved then the fruit of the spirit is in you already. You may not see it all manifested yet but it doesn’t mean it isn’t in you. Joy is one fruits of the Spirit, and YES it’s on the inside of you. It takes time for it to come to the surface and for others to see just like all the other fruits of the spirit. So be patient little grasshopper😉

Fruit must grow, it takes time and it must be nurtured. Same thing with Joy.

I am the vine; you are the branches. Remain in me and I in them, will produce much fruit. For apart from me you can do nothing. John 15:5

Get in His presence because THERE in His presence is fullness of joy precious one. Ask him to increase your hunger and thirst.

Do not grieve for the joy of the Lord is your strength. Nehemiah 8:10

Happiness and joy are not the same.

Happiness is based entirely on our circumstances and things going on around us. As soon as a difficult situation comes up or pain arises the happiness is gone. But Joy is different, Joy translates to “calm delight” and joy is a gift from God. It helps us be stable in the hardest of circumstances. It also helps us find the good, and hope and peace even when our lives are in turmoil. It’s not dependent on our circumstances and in the midst of the storm we can still have joy, a calm delight.

5 Things that steal your JOY.

1. Complaining and Grumbling-This is a HUGE one! It’s so easy to do and causes so much trouble in our lives. What I can tell you is that a #grateful #thankful heart is NOT dependent upon our circumstances. It’s not dependent on whether you got a good doctors report or bad, or whether your loved one is doing or acting right. No, the joy of the Lord is your strength, friend!

Remember your words are containers of power. You get to choose what kind of power they carry no one else.

You are what you speak and think. So you must get in agreement with Gods word, and speak life.

The things we think or ponder can steal our joy if we are not careful.

Where the mind goes the man follows.” Joyce Meyer

“Complain and remain. Praise and be raised.” Joyce Meyer

2. Procrastination– Oh goodness this one is NOT my friend, because I can fall into procrastination easily especially if it’s something I DO NOT want to do. I’ve got a million pictures that need to go in albums but man I know how long it’s gonna take me so I have put it off for a long time. I’m sure some of you are like that too. But I’m learning to do the hard things first, I don’t always get this right but it is something I’m working on. Don’t put off things you could do today.

3. Approval Addiction yep this is one I’ve also struggled with….approval.

3 little words have plagued me most of my life. Please. Perform. Perfect. Thankful I’m learning different way and to be gentle with myself😌

“Perfectionism is not self improvement. Perfectionism is at its core, about trying to earn approval and acceptance. Most perfectionist were raised being praised for achievement and performance (grades, manners, rule following, people pleasing, appearance, sports). Somewhere along the way we adopt this dangerous and debilitating belief system: I am what I accomplish and how well I accomplish it. Please. Perform. Perfect. Healthy striving is focused – how can I improve? Perfectionism is other focused – what will they think?”

Excerpt from The Gifts of Imperfection. Excellent book if you struggle with this! Check it out!

4. Living in the past or past Hurts

Forgetting what lies behind and straining forward to what lies ahead. Philippians 3:13

Strain forward my friend to ALL the good things God has in store for you.

You can’t live in the past. You can’t change the past. All you can do is learn from it and press on.

5. Fear

Fear is absolutely the worst! I’ve struggled with fear a great portion of my life. Let me just say that is NOT Gods plan for you my friend. Fear is of the devil and fear is a liar! I love the song Fear Is a Liar by Zach Williams. Here is a portion of his lyrics:

Fear, he is a liar

He will take your breath

Stop you in your steps

Fear he is a liar

He will rob your rest

Steal your happiness

Cast your fear in the fire

‘Cause fear he is a liar

The “feelings” of fear can be paralyzing, I’ve been there myself and you may find yourself there today. In the past fear has kept me from walking in the plans God had for me. I can recall a time when I was a volunteer counselor for Sav-A-Life. See the reason I was drawn to do it was because I was 19 and pregnant myself, scared, didn’t know what I was going to do. So I knew that feeling all to well and wanted to help others. For me abortion was out, so Sean and I talked and I prayed, we loved each other and so we got married and we’ve been together for 28 years now, 3 daughters later. God is good!

I went through training and I loved the one on one counseling, I knew I was helping and making a difference. As time went on they asked me to do educational classes for Mom and Dad. Well there it was, Fear showed her ugly head. I was good with one on one but teaching a class full of people well that was different. I knew in my heart that God wanted me to do it but fear prevailed and I ended up quitting and never went back. THAT IS WHAT FEAR DOES.

Fast forward a few years, I became a Life Issues leader for Celebrate Recovery. I was leading a group, sharing my testimony in large groups. The thing I feared God was using and I was doing it afraid. That lead to leading lots small groups, teaching health and wellness classes. I still had some fear but the difference was I wasn’t allowing it to control me any more.

My friend fear cannot be outrun, it MUST be faced in order to overcome. If you allow it fear will steal your joy, wear you down, and keep you from the plans that God has for you. So say “NO!” to fear. Do it afraid! Be expectant that the Lord is going to do something great in your life today!

PRAY, PRAY, and PRAY SOME MORE!

Here’s the thing, if your lacking in joy, and let’s be honest a lot of us are these days, pray! Pray at all times, in all situations and without ceasing. Prayer changes things! It gives God the opportunity to show himself strong in your life.

Sometimes He changes your circumstances and other times he changes YOU. That’s what he did in my life and he will do it for you too precious one.

Your prayers can literally can change the atmosphere. It can change your life, your marriage, your loved ones, and anything else you need.

This is the year for Unspeakable JOY in your life. God is looking and longing to bless you, to set you free, and bring more joy to your life. So you be expectant my friend!

Unspeakable JOY is on the way!

Big hugs,

Nicole💗

You’re an Overcomer

I love this so much!!! This reminds me of our walk with God and how people view us. Maybe someone new you before you were a Christian and now God has done a mighty work in you and you have changed but the people around still see the old you.

BUT GOD, has placed something in you, a gift, a calling that ONLY God sees.

What is He calling you to do?

What is He wanting you to contend for?

Are you afraid to step out because of what others might think or say?

God HAS placed something special on the inside of you! He has a call on YOUR life!!

BUT are you willing to risk everything to step out and find out? Or will you shrink back in fear?

God see’s something IN YOU that NO ONE else knows or see’s. Be BOLD, be COURAGEOUS!! GO FOR IT!!

YOU are God’s Heavyweight Champion!! You are His Contender for the Kingdom!!

Don’t worry abt what you can’t do, you do what you CAN do and God will do what you can’t!! Focus on Him and not the problems and it will come to pass in due time!!

Love the lyrics to Mandisa’s song Overcomer “You’re an overcomer, Stay in the fight ’til the final round. You’re not going under Cause God is holding you right now. You might be down for a moment, Feeling like it’s hopeless That’s when he reminds you, That you’re an overcomer, You’re an overcomer!”

That’s who YOU are!

Be blessed and have a wonderful day!

Nicole💗

Overcoming Deep Dark Secrets….Life With An Eating Disorder

Hey y’all! Hope you guys have had a great week. I haven’t talked about this in a minute but I feel like it’s so important, not only for myself but for those suffering in silence. Some of you know I have struggled with an eating disorder for a good portion of my life, that maybe where you find yourself at today. But I want to offer hope to you, hope that you don’t have to stay in the same place as you are today. You don’t have to have the same struggles or battles, if your willing to allow God in and put the work in…..YOU CAN HAVE FREEDOM. It’s there for the taken!! While I’m still on the road to recovery, I’m getting stronger and more free every day, and you can to my friend.

So I want talk about what helped lead up to me even being willing to get help. I’m using the word willing for an important reason because if I said I was waiting on WHEN I FELT LIKE MAKING CHANGES I’d be waiting for an awfully long time. Because we can feel like every Monday we want to start over and TRY to get things right. But in my experience “WE TRY” “WE FEEL” and it hasn’t served me well.

Feelings are so fickle, they are one way one day and different the next. So waiting on your feeling to be what you want….well that day may never come. But if I make a conscious choice to say Lord I’M WILLING that’s different. I’m not giving my feelings a vote.

Our church has a small group/conference called Freedom and WOW it’s incredible! Well I went through it and right when it was time for conference in last December, I got so sick and I couldn’t go. I was so so upset, discouraged and didn’t understand at all. At the time I couldn’t see what God was doing behind the scenes and let me just say He is such a behind scenes kinda Guy.

So the 1st of January rolls around and 21 Days of Fasting And Prayer starts and prolly half way through God stuck His finger right on IT and said “Nicole now is the time, it’s time to deal with your eating disorder.”

“Excuse me Lord but I don’t have a problem.”

Now mind you I was weighing myself everyday sometimes 2-3 times a day. BUT I DON’T HAVE A PROBLEM. Denial!

I had been abusing diuretics and laxatives for years. I would fast and I could fast like nobody’s business but then I’d binge…..I was struggling with something, I didn’t know it had a name. It’s name was bulimia.

So it was at the moment I realized why I wasn’t able to go to the Freedom conference. God had something more He needed to deal with me on and bring healing to my soul.

Right then and there I went to my medicine cabinet and threw out all my diuretics and laxatives. Now I’d like to say it was easy from that point on and that I didn’t struggle but because my body was use to them and needed them to go to the bathroom. It was like crucifying the flesh…Ugghhh! There’s a healing period which I’m pretty sure I’m still in, I think it will take a while to heal my intestines, body, spirit, and emotions from all that trauma I put myself through.

It’s funny how we always think no one knows our deep dark secrets because we put on our mask every day and act like we gucci. But ya know what….I know…..God knows. And the pain of holding all of it in or keeping up the image will destroy you.

So after much prayer and seeking the Lord on what to do, the first thing I needed to do was to tell my husband. Oh how I dreaded that conversation, to the point it made me physically ill, like wanting to throw up.

So finally I went downstairs and said “Honey I need to talk to you about something and it’s going to be really hard for me to talk about. Of course I’m already crying and can hardly speak. I know the poor man is prolly thinking “Ohhhh I’m in the doghouse, she about to leave me! Or she’s having a affair!”

I could hardly get it out I was crying so hard but once I did you could see the relief on his face that it wasn’t one of the before mentioned items lol. I’m being so vulnerable baring my soul, and he’s relieved I’m not having an affair. Lol😂 We can look for humor in everything.

I told him how I had been struggling and abusing laxatives and diuretics, fasting and binging. He listened and said “Thank you honey for sharing that with me I know that was extremely hard for you. How can I help or what do you want to do?” Well I had already been looking for a counselors, I thought a nutritionist was a good idea as well. So I started there. I also shared with our 3 daughters, what was hidden in the dark had to come out, so it could hold no more power over me. It was a step toward freedom.

I reached out to a nutritionist who I really like but for me I have to say this is such a tricky part of having a eating disorder. They go over all your healthy issues, keeping in mind your eating disorder and then put you on a meal plan. Well for me what I had found is that I already had such a unhealthy relationship with food you telling me I can’t have a Dr. Pepper and I can only eat these things it wasn’t good for me. Because not realizing but all my life I had been putting certain foods in good categories and bad categories and if I ate from the good category I was good but if I ate or drank from the bad category “I was bad” I would heap so much shame and guilt onto myself which kept me spiraling. Not sure if that makes sense or not, so for a while I’ve been working on just my relationship WITH food. I know there are good and bad foods and our bodies NEED the good foods but your mind and heart still need to make that connection without condemnation and shame being in the picture. So if I ate a brownie or drank a Dr. Pepper I wasn’t a bad person like I fell like I was. It’s crazy what our mind can make us think about ourselves.

Having a eating disorder for me while it is obsessing over weight and food, I’ve also learned it goes sooooo much deeper than that. It went back to things from my childhood that led up to that.

I was raised in alcoholism, with that comes so much baggage. Enabling, people pleasing, codependency, fear, manipulation, people trying to control you, you feeling out of control, and not knowing what the day would hold. I think I learned to try not to rock the boat fairly early in life, that was a safe place….so I thought.

I love my mother and father dearly but they divorced before I was 2 and my father remarried and had 3 other daughters. He wasn’t there for me as much as I would have liked him to be or at the time needed him to be. Our relationship then wasn’t as strong as it is today. Thankful God brings restoration.

I lived with my mother who also remarried 4 times and that was very difficult for me in that I didn’t have a stable father figure. Let me say upfront I do not in any way blame her. She worked hard to raise me the best way she knew how and all she wanted was to be loved. She loved the way she knew how and so did my Dad. And can’t we all relate to that? We all want to be loved and accepted, we do what we know….right or wrong. It definitely hindered me in many ways but it also helped shape me into the woman I am today.

I was molested at a young age and back then that wasn’t something you talked about and they also threatened me about telling anyone. So that was yet another deep dark secret that got stuffed deep down.

Your life shapes you for the good or for the bad and at the moment for me it wasn’t good. Things were quickly building for the perfect storm in my life.

At a young age I quickly learned that when I expressed my feelings I got in trouble, or I was told I was wrong for feeling that way. I was also told on several occasions “If you do that you can’t come back home”. I felt rejected and like what I had to say or what I felt wasn’t important. So what did I do, I stuffed my emotions down further and further. That’s what we are doing with our eating disorders or any addiction for that matter.

By the time I had meet my husband and we married I had such low self esteem. I was constantly comparing myself to other women, and of course never measuring up. I literally hated myself. I would tear myself apart. It’s so sad to say these things but even watching TV was a struggle for me. If a beautiful woman came on tv I began comparing myself to her, telling myself how ugly I was. How my husband prolly would rather have her than me. It was AWFUL!!

The devil knows your weaknesses and he will use them against you. He will whisper lies in your ears and if you’re not careful you’ll believe them and they will hold you captive.

It wasn’t until I went to Al-Anon where I started getting help to deal with others in my life who had drinking problems that I was able to get free from some of that and I began loving myself.

I can remember one day texting my sponsor with tears in my eyes from a baton competition and telling her how much fun I was having and how in the past they were so difficult for me because of all the cute young girl running around in their little costumes. I was getting FREE little by little and it felt so good!!

All the things I’ve talked about cause frustration, confusion, distrust, guilt, rejection, fear of failure, shame, people pleasing and so much more. That’s what you begin to think, act, and do.

So fast forward to going to counseling, I felt like God lead me to this specific person. I mean for goodness sakes her name was Hope!

Hope means a confidant expectation of something good.

Hope was exactly what I had been looking for, for my whole life. Not the person although she’s has been such a blessing in my life but the HOPE God gives us in our time of need.

Hope was what I needed to overcome this disorder and other things in my life that have so enslaved me.

Hope for my future.

Hope for freedom.

Hope to have a voice.

Hope to share my feelings and not feel like I’m wrong for having them.

Just HOPE!

So while I’m still on the road to recovery, I’ll be honest I don’t do the laxatives or diuretics, but on a really bad day or week in my weakness I have turned to fasting and binging sometimes, but not as often as I use too PRAISE GOD!! That’s progress. God is so good and faithful and He will do it for you to precious one.

Today I can say I have HOPE for a better life. A life of freedom. I have good days and bad days but the thing I’m finding so valuable is my VOICE AND MY FEELINGS, whether their good or bad they are mine and it’s ok to have them and express them in a appropriate way. They no longer have to be stuffed!

Learning to not be lead by my feelings but to feel them and know they are real and they are mine and it’s not wrong to have them or express them.

My job is to allow God to bring healing to me, set healthy boundaries, and use my voice when needed and NOT STUFF IT! Stop stuffing things down just because someone may not like it or not want to hear something uncomfortable.

And my goodness stop taken ownership and fixing things that are others responsibilities. I have to stay on my side of the street in order to keep myself in a healthy place.

Precious one you gotta get the Word on inside of you if want to get to the other side of your problem where FREEDOM is. Meditate on it day and night. Pick one, stay on it till it’s deep in you and them move onto the next one.

Psalm 139:14 I will praise You because I have been remarkably and wonderfully made. Your works are wonderful, and I know this very well.

Song of Solomon 4:7 My darling, everything about you is beautiful, and there is nothing at all wrong with you.

1 Corinthians 6:19-20 Don’t you know that your body is a temple that belongs to the Holy Spirit? The Holy Spirit, whom you received from God, lives in you. You don’t belong to yourselves. You were bought for a price. So bring glory to God in the way you use your body.

Zephaniah 3:17 For the LORD your God is living among you. He is a mighty savior. He will take delight in you with gladness. With his love, he will calm all your fears. He will rejoice over you with joyful songs.

You are loved my friend! We all have our issues whether it’s an eating disorder or some other kind of addiction God wants you to turn to Him and let Him help you. He will take what the enemy meant to harm and destroy and use for your good. But it’s up to you to let Him. He calls you holy, righteous, beautiful, and His Trophy of Grace

Love and hugs,

Nicole 💗

Please click the link below and enjoy the song You’ll Come by Hillsong

https://youtu.be/2RmZFaruXhs