Tag Archives: Joy

Healing….My Word Of The Year

Hey y’all! How is your year going so far? We are in the middle of 21 days of prayer. It’s Ahhhmazzing! Believing God for many things this year.

What are you believing God for this year?

Healing is my word for this year. Do you have one? If so what is it? I’d love to hear from you.

Joy was my word last year. So funny how God knows exactly what we need when we need it. Last year was an extremely difficult year for me. God knew JOY was what I would. He knew the things I was going to go through were going to be difficult and I would need strength in order to persevere. I needed to find JOY amidst the trials.

The JOY of the Lord is our strength.

I needed JOY to keep going and get through every day.

As I said, healing is my word this year for several reasons. Some I’ll share and some are private.

One is, I need physical healing in my body from multiple things.

But I also need healing from this eating disorder I’ve struggled with for so many years. I’ve been set free from using the diuretics and laxatives everyday, praise God! That is a miracle in itself 🙏🏻🙌🏻 But I still have my daily struggles. He’s not done with me yet and he’s not done with you either sweet friend. He’s been delivering me from glory to glory but I’m ready to be COMPLETELY FREE! COMPLETELY HEALED! Maybe that’s you too!

There are relationships in my life that need healing…Ones that I can’t do anything about.

Loved ones who need Jesus.

Loved ones who are sick and need healing.

Loved ones who are making wrong choices.

Loved ones who are heartbroken.

Loved ones who just need a miracle.

Relationships that need restoration.

Ones that only God can fix it.

One thing I know though is that nothing is to big for my God and nothing is impossible for Him!

He’s the God of the IMPOSSIBLE.

He’s the WAYMAKER!

Verse of the Year:

Bless the Lord, O my soul, and forget not all his benefits, who forgives all your iniquity, who heals all your diseases, who redeems your life from the pit, who crowns you with steadfast love and mercy, who satisfies you with good so that your youth is renewed like the eagle’s. Psalm 103:2-5

God bless you sweet friends and if you need prayer, I would be honored to pray for you. Have a blessed and wonderful day.

Big hugs,

Nicole💗

Song of the Year:

Waymaker- Leeland

Even when I don’t see it, You’re working
Even when I don’t feel it, You’re working
You never stop, You never stop working
You never stop, You never stop working
Way maker, miracle worker, promise keeper
Light in the darkness, my God
That is who You are
Way maker, miracle worker, promise keeper
Light in the darkness, my God
That is who You are

https://youtu.be/iJCV_2H9xD0

Home For The Holidays- Some Of My Favorite Things

Welcome to the Hopkins Homestead Traditional Christmas.

The smell of Christmas is in the air. Yep you guessed it, Bath And Body Works “Winter” plugs in and their “Fireside” candles are my favorites. I stock up enough to last me all year long.

Did I mention I’m addicted to Bath and Body Works? My husbands jokes and says he’s created a Bath and Body Quicken category in our budget🤣🙈 He simply doesn’t appreciate me, I’m saving him so much money. I only buy them on sale and always have a 20% off coupon….he should thank me😜

My tree isn’t up yet, it has to go in the corner and I have to take my favorite chair out. It will go up first part of December as well as the outside decorations😍😍Yep, that’s a Christmas movie on the TV. I had to have some unexpected surgery last week but I’m gonna say if you have to have surgery this is the best time to recovery, all the Christmas movies on TV, keeps your heart happy and laughter is good medicine.

Our builder put tile around the fireplace but we decided to change it several years ago. We had our Worship Pastor change it out to the stone. It’s the same stone that’s in the church. The same church our daughter was married in. I think it’s just the little touches that no one may even know about that make your house a home. Sweet reminders to me💗

One of the things I always hope you feel when you come in our home is love, joy, and peace. So I try and surround myself with sweet reminders.

I’ve always loved opening our home for family, friends, ladies smalls groups, and company parties. It’s one of the things that makes my heart happy, to serve and love on others.

Another Kirkland’s picture, purchased on clearance a couple years ago.

Actually Kirkland’s has prolly thrown up in my house🤣 Love and Hope 💗💗 There’s a funny conversation piece in the bathroom you can’t see, it’s a Dirty Santa gift……an emoji Pooh 💩 plunger. It always gets the laughs and the occasional text or post🤣🤣🤣I’ve had these little mailboxes since our girls were little. They maybe old but I just can’t part with them. I paid $4.91 for both….after Christmas deal!😱 Store in the original box.

You can’t have Santa 🎅 without a sleigh. The sleigh and present lights up real pretty. A gift from a dear friend.

Special gift from a friend😍

The Sant clause picture below was another after Christmas deal from Kirkland’s a couple years ago, ridiculous price. It’s bigger than it looks. Side note…. I think I need to move my table over, it’s off center 😬

This was a little table I had that was super cute already but I wanted to chalk paint a bedroom set and I had never done it, so I thought I’ll try it out on the table first before I destroyed a bedroom suit, LOL. It actually turned out great, I did it like 4 years ago. Chalk paint is so easy and changes the look of everything.

The little Santa and deer are very special to me because it was my mother in laws, who has since gone on to be with the Lord. We miss her dearly.

I was so excited when I came across that Santa and deer picture at Kirkland’s a couple of years ago, it just made the entrance to our home so much more special to me and a reminder of loved ones who have passed.

This our Snowman ⛄️ it’s on its last leg I think. We bought it the same time as the mailboxes, $4.91 😱 I’ll continue to do what I can to save Frosty ☃️ I love him 😍

A great find from last year on eBay. Vintage Fitz & Floyd Santa cookie jar, perfect condition and original box. So cute and great deal!😍

This guy has always been one of my favorites too, bought him same time as the Snowman and mailboxes. $14.91😱😱😱 Still looks great! The dogs kinda freak out at first and my grand dog, Gus will dart past it like a bolt of lightning because he’s scared of it. He’s a bulldog with irrational fears 🤣 It’s so funny.

New gift from a precious friend. It’s very special to me😇

These jars get used all time, I just change the look for different seasons. Bought them years ago from Kirkland’s. Would love to find another set somewhere.

The red polka dot gift is actually doubles as a drink dispenser, it’s just too cute to not use as decoration. Another after Christmas deal years ago. I think we paid $4.91 or $9.91. Either way it was a steal! I always think of the Grinch when I see it for some reason. I love the Grinch with Jim Carey.

The little hot chocolate station doesn’t look as cute as usual, it’s just out. There’s so much more stuff in the attic I couldn’t get it all down and go through. But it will get the job done this year. I keep Hershey kisses in there but it might be missing a few 😉😋

It’s Elf, need I say more! 🎄😍 My oldest daughter bought me the picture a few years ago. I love it! The Elf candy dish I got at Hobby Lobby last year….it might be missing some candy too😉

#TheTable, many a meal has been ate here with family and friends. Old stories told over and over and new ones. Lots of games, birthdays, and holidays.

This is one of the many things my ever so talented middle daughter has made me. Love it so much!

This is another things she’s done for me. I love it😍

There’s so many things you can do to make your house feel like a home and don’t cost that much. Especially when you have a daughter with a silhouette 😉 But seriously you can find this kinda stuff on Amazon, Etsy, and other online sites. Buy and apply and it just makes it so homey.

A fresh coat of paint can completely change a room.

Throw pillows on your couch and if your tired of your olds ones now you can buy pillow slip covers. Or even go on Pinterest to show you how to make them. How easy is that?!?!

I love some Kirkland’s too, I mean really who can resist?!?! You can always find good sales and coupons for them.

Then there’s TJ Maxx, Hobby Lobby, Home Goods….Ohhhh my word! It’s like Heaven.

Hope you enjoyed our little Home For The Holidays and Some Of My Favorite Things.

Making your house a home can be so fun and honestly not so expensive if you are patient and look for sales…..you can create you and your family a little haven. Something you love coming home too and sharing with others.

I also suggest saving some monies for after Christmas shopping, you truly can get some of the best deals! Just FYI 😉

I hope this holiday season is filled with love, peace, and joy. God bless you sweet friends! Happy early Thanksgiving and Merry Christmas!

Big hugs,

Nicole💗

Come Forth

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Have you found yourself in a place you never thought you’d be and you feel like you’ve lost your way?

You only feel pain and despair. Your heart is full of sadness. You feel so far from God, and you drifting aimlessly through life. You doubt God, and all you see is just darkness.

We’ve all been there at some point.

Life can be messy no doubt but as we approach the holidays for some it can be much worse. TV and movies depict a perfect, joyous life, with miracles happening just when you need it. I’m not knocking Hallmark Christmas movies, in fact I’m quite the fan of them but I’m just saying is what we experience isn’t always that perfect life we see on the screen…. all wrapped up in a pretty red bow 🎁

– Maybe you’ve experienced the loss of a loved one.

– Maybe it’s a broken relationship.

– Maybe the children you’ve longed for but it hasn’t happened yet.

– A lost dream.

-The loss of a job.

– Maybe you just dread all the hustle and bustle that the holidays bring.

– Or maybe it’s something as small as the in laws or your crazy uncle Eddie, lol!

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We all are going through something, big or small.

If you’ve fallen and lost your way precious one, allow me to speak life into your darkness. You are not to far gone for God to come down to that miry pit and swoop you up. You are chosen, loved, and fully known. The Lord is near, He’s close to the brokenhearted. He sees your pain, and He sees each tear and has collected each one in a bottle.

Psalm 56:8 “You keep track of all my sorrows. You have collected all my tears in your bottle. You have recorded each one in your book.

Psalm 112:4 “Light dawns in the darkness for the upright; he is gracious, merciful, and righteous.”

If you call on Him, He will come running. He will shine light into your darkness.

You are not forgotten.

Come forth from the darkness my friend.

You were made to live in the Light.

To the doubting voice, allow me to speak to those places of your heart that have lost hope that God can restore what’s broken and shattered in your life. He is the God of restoration and He has a great plan for your life. What the enemy meant to harm and destroy God will work for your good. He will take your mess and give you a message. You may have drifted off track but just jump right back on, he’s the God of second chances, third, forth, tenth, or a hundred. He does not relent.

Gods not disappointed in you, quite the opposite…He’s cheering you on. When you are weak precious one, He is strong. He can give you strength to get through another day.

Nehemiah 8:10 “The JOY of the Lord is your strength.”

Come forth from the doubt that has overtaken you.

You were made to live in the confidence that God has you right in the palm of His hand and He will restore to you what the enemy has stolen.

To the voice of sadness that’s overwhelmed you, I speak victory. Though sadness has lingered on, I say you will not give up for the battle is already won sweet friend. To the voice that says “Just give up” I speak strength to your inner man to keep moving forward and not give up. Gods not done with you yet. You will live and not die. You will press on to all the good things God has for you.

Draw near to God and He will draw near to you. He will give you joy for morning and beauty for your ashes.

Isaiah 61:3 “and provide for those who grieve in Zion– to bestow on them a crown of beauty instead of ashes, the oil of joy instead of mourning, and a garment of praise instead of a spirit of despair. They will be called oaks of righteousness, a planting of the LORD for the display of his splendor.

Come forth from the grief and sadness that has tried to engulf your life.

You were made to live a life of joy.

Let me just say, you can still live a life of joy in the midst of a storm. Joy isn’t the absence of problems, it’s the calm delight in the midst of a storm.

Consider it pure joy, my brothers and sisters, whenever you face trials of many kinds,

James 1:2-4 “because you know that the testing of your faith produces perseverance. Let perseverance finish its work so that you may be mature and complete, not lacking anything.”

Battle plan:

Praise, praise, and more praise because praise breaks the chains that bind us. Praise gives you strength to keep going. Praise changes the atmosphere.

Build up your support system around you. Friends, loved ones, support groups, or counseling if you need it. You won’t make it alone, you were built for relationship. We are better together.

When all you see is only hopelessness, change your focus and declare You O Lord are a shield around me and the lifter of my head.

When you find yourself wondering aimlessly, remember God is with you and He will direct your path.

When that grief and sadness kick in again, remember He gives JOY for mourning and beauty for your ashes.

When you are weary His word says “Come to Me, all you who are weary and burdened and I will give you rest.”

When your life has been full of broken promises, His word say “God is not man, that he should lie…” Get in the word and claim His promises for your life.

Maybe you don’t know or even feel it at this moment but Jesus loves YOU at your darkest sweet friend. While we were still sinners Christ died on the cross for you and me.

Come forth the Victory God has already planned for you.

Come forth the Breakthrough for your life that’s already been set in motion.

Come forth spirit of God and do what only You can do.

Come forth and show Your glory Lord.

I pray this holiday season will be one of rest, gratefulness, and JOY UNSPEAKABLE.

Big hugs,

Nicole💗

Breakthrough-Red Rock Worship https://youtu.be/6ni5_JGRrgs

To Forgive Or Not Forgive…That Is The Question

We all have situations in our lives when we have to choose to forgive. Take a minute and just think of a time where you were wronged or where someone hurt you, you got it? Now remember how it made you feel mentally, spiritually, and physically because it does all 3. It can run the gamut.

What happens when we don’t forgive?

Unforgiveness, pain, or stress can cause heartburn, high blood pressure, migraines, all kinds of sickness, sleep problems, anxiety, depression, and worsen pain. It can also cause us to put up walls, not trust others even when they were not the offender. It can cause us to live in fear, shame, and rejection. Puts distance between you and God, and other people and soooo much more.

Once that offense happens unforgiveness, bitterness, resentment, anger, and more can all set in. I’m quite certain we’ve all experienced them at some point in our lives. It’s what we do with when it’s pops it’s ugly head out that matters most.

We can choose to let it makes angry, unhappy, grumpy, miserable, sick, basically it’s like drinking poison and expecting the one who harmed us to die. I’ve been there myself to often and my friend it’s not a fun place to be.

  • Unforgiveness steals your joy.
  • Unforgiveness actually can make your body sick.
  • Unforgiveness also opens the door for the enemy to work in your life.
  • Unforgiveness can hinder your prayer life, and keep your prayers from being answered.

So what’s our other choice? Because we do have another choice, it’s not easy by any means but it is the one that’s best for us and that’s….forgiveness!

I think we get confused, it doesn’t excuse the person or what they did that harmed you, it’s for yourself! It’s for your peace and your joy.

The wrongs that have been done to you can make you bitter or better, but not both. I’m choosing the latter. And yes it’s hard but it’s so worth it!

You may have to do it over and over and over again until one day it just is better and that person or situation no longer has power over you.

I found myself there the other day over a certain situation and I had the choice on what I would do. I’m happy to say after some shed tears, yes Lord 70*7 I choose to forgive, for myself and Lord as hard as it is to say, would You bless my enemies.

Matthew 18:21-22 “Then came Peter to him, and said, Lord, how oft shall my brother sin against me, and I forgive him? till seven times? Jesus saith unto him, I say not unto thee, Until seven times: but, Until seventy times seven.

Matthew 5:44 “But I tell you, love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you.”

What the enemy meant for harm and to destroy, You Lord will work for my good. It’s a promise!

Obviously, God has something so much better for us. Today I can even say thank you for the situation because it’s just given God more of an opportunity to shine in our lives. It’s all for His glory!

Ya know, I share some of my crazy Jerry Springer things or my brokenness and struggles not to air my dirty laundry or make you feel sorry for me but in hopes that maybe through my pain, my trials I can encourage and help someone else along the way! That’s my hearts desire. I never want my pain or tears to be wasted, and I want Him to receive all the glory. I’ve been through some stuff, just like you but I choose to let it make me better and you can too!

So today, I say choose forgiveness sweet friend, not for them but for yourself. God sees what’s going on in the lives of his precious children and don’t think He will not bring vindication and victory in your lives.

It takes time to restore and it may look different than what you think it should look like. But it’s durning those times of restoration that our faith and trust grows and we grow closer to God.

Never doubt God has a plan, He wasn’t caught off guard by what happened to you. His word says, “He will do exceedingly, abundantly, above and beyond all you could hope, ask or think.” Amen!! He loves you with an everlasting love and He will work it all out for your good.

Have a blessed and wonderful weekend! God bless you!

Big hugs,

Nicole💗

He Brings Restoration

The Prodigal Son-We all know the story of the Lost son who finds his way home. Its a beautiful story of God’s grace.

No matter where you are today precious one, or what you have done, that same unconditional love is waiting for you. He’s calling for you to come home. He’s waiting for you.

What are you waiting on?

No decision you’ve made, no problem to big, and no pit is to deep that God can’t get to you. All you have to do is call His name and He will swoop you up in his arms. He will take ALL your pain, shame, bondages and in return He will give you joy everlasting, healing, and freedom!

Your return to Him is something to be celebrated. He has a fancy robe, a fancy ring and some kicking shoes, and a feast like none other…..ALL just waiting for you.

What are you waiting on? Come home!

I’m not saying everything immediately gets better or that there are no consequences for your actions but what I am saying is that God is on your side and He WILL restore to you what has been lost or stolen. Sometimes it takes a long time but you will NOT be alone. God is with you every step of the way. He won’t leave you nor forsake you. He will not in any way fail you nor give you up nor leave you without support. [I will] not, [I will] not, [I will] not in any degree leave you helpless norforsake nor let [you] down (relax My hold on you)! [Assuredly not!] Hebrews 13:5

Sweet friend, He brings restoration! He makes ALL things new. Come to the party, He’s waiting just for YOU!

Big hugs,

Nicole💗

Restoration by David Brymer
https://youtu.be/yBhqrcfp87k
You bring restoration

to my soul
You’ve taken my pain
called me by a new name
You’ve taken my shame
and in it’s place, You give me joy
You take mourning and turn it into dancing
You take weeping and turn it into laughing
You take mourning and turn it into dancing
You take my sadness and turn it into joy
hallelujah, hallelujah
You make all things new, all
things new

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

When God steps in, Miracles happen!

When God steps in, MIRACLES HAPPEN!! He’s in the miracle making business.

What are you in need of my friend? Do you have dreams that you’ve let die over the years?

I don’t know about you but I’m believing and expecting some great things this year! I need physical healing and there are loved ones and friends who need Jesus and some JOY! I’m believing God to use me in a greater way.

Don’t be afraid to ask God for BIG things!! He has planted hidden dreams and plans in your heart, ask for them to be revealed. It may look impossible, and in the natural it is BUT WITH GOD ALL THINGS ARE POSSIBLE!!

When God steps in, MIRACLES HAPPEN!! He’s in the miracle making business my friend.

So don’t go telling God how big your problem is, tell your problems how BIG YOUR GOD IS!! Pray bold prayers and EXPECT BIG, BELIEVE BIG and God will move on your behalf!!

Ask God to show Himself strong in your life because NOTHING is to difficult for our Faithful God!!🙌🏻

Big hugs,

Nicole 💗

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💗

Count it ALL Joy

Sometimes in life it’s just one thing after another! I know you’ve heard people say, and maybe you’ve said it “And the hits just keep on coming” or “It’s always something…I can never catch a break” But what if God is speaking through those trials, trying to teach us something and we just don’t see it.

His word says He will test our hearts, emotions, and thinking. When the pressures of life arise, then you see what’s really on the inside of us. God is looking to see if we will hold up to the pressure. It’s the Refiners fire, molding and shaping us into His image. Will we pass the test…Or go around the mountain again?

Well the awesome thing about God is that there is no pass or fail…..you’ll just get to retake the test, you’ll get to hike around that mountain AGAIN!! Been there done that, bought the cd and T-shirts lol.

The test and trials of life are so we can learn who we really are and what’s on the inside that needs to come out, and our great need of a Good Good Father. God is not impressed by what we say we know or what we say we will do, He wants to PROVE us under pressure.

I remember years ago when our house flooded in the basement the first time (yes I said FIRST time) Sean and I were not very happy and rightfully so but I don’t think we handled it very well either lol.

Trial=Mr. and Mrs. Grumpy Gills 😂😂

Not long later it happened again that time I hit my knees and asked “OK Lord what do you want me to learn from this?” And my attitude completely changed. I wasn’t happy about the trial but I sure didn’t want to behave like I did before and I had to go through it anyways.

Nothing I could do would change it, I had to go through….so while I’m going through I might as learn something and not let the devil steal my joy!!

And then wouldn’t you know it a year or so later YES IT HAPPENED AGAIN!! But this time I actually laughed about it and said Lord I know you have this, and devil you are under my feet!

So today as I go through these trials, whatever they are…air conditioning goes out, washer breaks, trouble with vehicles, doggo problems, and others that are more serious I choose to take the test and pass…..Lord I don’t want to go around the same stupid mountain AGAIN!!

Help me, my trust is in You Lord and not what I see going on around me. For Your word tells me that You are for me not against me, that what the enemy meant to harm and destroy, You will work ALL things out for our good!

I also know You Lord have a great plan for my life and my family. Sometimes when we are going through trials we have to remind ourselves of God’s promises, remember past victories. Trust in a God that loves you and knows what’s best for you. He sees and knows what we can’t see or know. Trust you will be victorious…You already are!!

You are destined for greatness, no matter what those trials look like.

God calls YOU his own, He calls you righteous (in right standing with God…not perfect) and He calls YOU OVERCOMER. He loves you and he’s working behind the scenes on your behalf.

Have faith, press into Jesus, stand firm, and speak life precious one!!

Big hugs,

Nicole💗

JOY

What an amazing Christmas service last night! I love when God brings confirmation of something he’s spoke to you.

As I mentioned in a previous post God has been speaking the word JOY to me for the last few days and yesterday I received a Joy picture from a friend out of the blue.

I have already been praying about what my word for next year would be and decided yesterday my word was JOY. So last night at the service wouldn’t you know the first song was JOY to the World and then Pastor Chris brought a powerful word. Then he started talking about what the word for 2019 was…..I already had tears in my eyes and was saying to myself he is fixing to say JOY….then he says it’s JOY! Goodness the tears just flowed, I was completely blown away. He just amazes me.

God is so good! Connect to the source (Jesus) and your life will change in amazing ways. He’s speaking sometimes we just need to be quiet enough to hear. Be blessed!

Let you light shine for all the world to see!

Merry Christmas y’all!

Big hugs,

Nicole❤️