Tag Archives: Trophy of Grace

Word Of The Year- Courageous

Good morning y’all! Hope you are doing well today. Do you do a Word Of The Year? I’ve been doing it for many years now and I love looking back to my words and the years and seeing how they fit, it always blows my mind.

This year after much prayer I’ve decided that COURAGEOUS is my word. Why did I choose it? Well, I’ll be honest there were many reasons why I choose it but manly because of one 4 letter word…..FEAR.

Fear has gripped me since I was a little child. I didn’t have what I would call a stable home life. It was one of chaos. Don’t get me wrong, I know my mom did the best she could with what she knew. But in her own ways she taught me to be fearful of so many things. Still to this day she tries to put her fears on me, only today I know better and don’t receive it. Over the years I have walked through many things and learned to “Do it afraid” but 2020 showed me there was still some fear in me that needed to be dealt with.

I refuse to live my life in fear.

God kept speaking to my heart Joshua 1:9 “Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous! Do not be terrified or dismayed (intimidated), for the Lord your God is with you wherever you go.

DO NOT BE AFRAID. BE STRONG AND COURAGEOUS.

Fear is from the devil and the devil is a LIAR! It starts off as a little thought and before you know our emotions are all wrapped up i it and it becomes soooo strong and can actually overwhelm us. For some it cause panic attacks and others it can cause to shrink back. That’s why we have to be so careful with our emotions, they are fickle and ALWAYS CHANGING. We can’t be ruled by our emotions.

Proverbs 23:7 tells us that “as [a man] thinks in his heart, so is he“. I like what Joyce Meyer says: “Where the mind goes, the man follows.” That is so true. God wants us to walk by faith and the devil wants us to walk in paralyzing fear.

We have to meditate on the Word of God and renew our minds to be free from fear and be COURAGEOUS.

Ephesians 2:10 talks about how when we were born again we actually become recreated in Christ Jesus, [born anew] that we may do good works which God predestined…for us…[living the good life which He prearranged and made ready for us to live] So let’s think about that for just a minute, if we are “recreated in Christ” whatever Jesus is…..we are too my friend. He is strong and IN HIM we are strong.

1 John 4:17 says As He is so are we in this world.

You are all the things Jesus is.

So the why do we shrink back in fear? False. Evidence. Appearing. Real.

I think it’s because we look at ourselves and what we are not. We look at how far we have to go. We look at our circumstances and think NOTHING WILL EVER CHANGE. And finally, I think listen to what others think or have said to us or about us. They try and put out our fire on the inside to make themselves feel better but COURAGE is acting against fear. Acting against the naysayers. Acting on what God says about YOU. Not letting fear control you.

Do It Afraid my friend.

Be Strong and Courageous.

How Can I Be Courageous?

1. Put a name to your fear. I learned in Alanon how to name my fear and do a Fear inventory. It’s actually an AA step but my Alanon sponsor used the AA Big Book with me as well. I may not have been an alcoholic or drink but I was raised in it and lived with it so of course you pick up the “ISMS”

2. Surrender. This may take doing over and over again. Nothing is wrong with that, often times we give it up and take it back. Give back to God again.

3. Speak God’s Promises over your life. His promises are YES! And AMEN!! And they are for YOU my friend.

4. Renew Your Mind. Casting down imaginations, and every high thing that exalteth itself against the knowledge of God, and bringing into captivity every thought to the obedience of Christ; 2 Corinthians 10:5

So this year when those fearful thoughts come to my mind I will put a name to my fear. I will surrender. I will speak Gods promises over my life and keep renewing my mind.

I WILL BE STRONG AND COURAGEOUS AND KICK FEAR TO THE CURB! And I hope you will do.

What is your Word Of The Year and why? I’d love to hear from you.

Big hugs,

Nicole💗

Fasting and Eating Disorders

The kind of fasting I want is this: Remove the chains of oppression and the yoke of injustice, and let the oppressed go free. Share your food with the hungry and open your homes to the homeless poor. Give clothes to those who have nothing to wear, and do not refuse to help your own relatives. Then my favor will shine on you like the morning sun, and your wounds will be quickly healed. I will always be with you to save you; my presence will protect you on every side. Isaiah 58:6-8

I’ve learned so much as I walk out and get free from ED (eating disorder) 21 days of fasting and prayer have always been one of my favorite times of the year but also a time that caused me great pain and confusion. Over the last year though I’ve learned why.

Fasting can be very triggering for someone who suffers from an eating disorder.

This one word….Fasting….can cause my world to fall apart completely.

We study the life of Christ and his spiritual disciplines and we learn how important fasting and prayer are and how they can break the chains that bind us.

Prayer changes everything.

However, when one has an eating disorder fasting can destroy any and all progress you have made.

Restricting is NEVER GOOD under any circumstances.

Restricting TRIGGERS even done under the best of intentions.

Most people that do 21 days of prayer in January they might do the Daniel Fast, food altogether, sugar, 1- 2 meals a day, etc. But in my brain, that simple suggestion to skip or restrict a meal can flip a switch that cannot be easily turned off and send me spiraling.

I can remember over the years when I started realizing I was struggling in this area I just didn’t know why or how or what to do to help myself. 21 days of prayer and fasting would roll around and I decide to do Daniel fast and fail miserable. Enter shame and guilt.

Then I’d decided to fast sugar, same thing, I’d fail miserably. Enter more shame and guilt. I’d ask myself time and time again “Why can’t I do this?”

I know people mean well but there are some people that will shame you for not fasting what they’re fasting. That happened to me countless times. Let me just say I don’t need someone else heaping more shame and guilt on me I’ve done enough of that myself. You should NEVER shame anyone for doing something differently or not doing something you are doing because you have no idea what they are going through.

I read somewhere, “In many cases, asking a recovering eating disordered individual to fast for a single meal would be like inviting a recovering alcoholic to drink a beer: It is absolutely disastrous.” Let me just say it’s VERY TRUE!

I’m so thankful in so many ways for 2020. I believe I’ve grown more in my eating disorder which is mind blowing because during a pandemic eating disorders as well as other addictions and disorders were skyrocketing. Not to say, I didn’t have my challenges but I praise God He was moving and working in me and through me to gain more freedom instead of losing freedom.

So as we start this season of 21 Days of Fasting and Prayer, FOOD IS NOT AN OPTION FOR ME and even though it’s taken me a really long time to believe this….It’s ok!

I know we are called to Fast and Pray it’s all over the Bible. It was through 21 days of Fasting and Prayer when God finally said “Nicole, now is the time to deal with this secret problem you have.” He told me to throw out my diuretics and laxatives that I had been abusing for sooooo many years and I was set free right there! Haven’t touched another laxative or diuretic since. So I KNOW fasting and prayer work. It’s just mine and maybe yours needs to look differently and ITS OK.

We have to protect our own recovery. I have worked soooo incredibly hard to get to where I’m at and I have such a long way to go but you best believe I’m protective of myself.

Fasting is simply laying aside SELF. Who couldn’t benefit from that, right?

Fasting is clearing out the clutter that we’ve let in and allowing God in those places. I’m sure there are many areas we can come up with to give up or Fast from that don’t involve food.

Fasting is about growing closer to God.

More of Him and less of me.

Fasting is NOT a diet and some people use it to lose weight at the beginning of the year but don’t work on the drawing closer to Him part.

Ideas of things you can FAST:

Social Media

Gossip

TV

Video Games

Online Shopping 😱🙈 my hubby would prolly like me to do this one LOL😜

Secular Music

Negative Self Talk

Don’t Eat Out

There’s so many things you could Fast instead of food. It’s not about what your giving up it’s that you are dying to self so that Christ can be glorified through us.

Maybe, just maybe, me walking in my recovery, following my meal plan for someone with ED….maybe MY FAST. See now I’m learning self care and how to nourish myself….that’s a sacrifice and takes a lot of time and prayer.

So yes, I’m excited about 21 Days of Fasting and Prayer! But I WILL NOT be fasting food in any way. My ED recovery is to precious to me and I’ve come to far for that. I look forward to seeing what our Mighty God will do during this season.

I’m believing and expecting great things for you and for me. God bless you and I hope you have a wonderful week!

Big hugs,

Nicole💗

I still believe You’re moving. I still believe You’re speaking God, I believe You’re working All things for good. I fix my eyes on Heaven God, I receive Your vision God, I believe You’re working All things for good. We sing come alive in the name of Jesus. Come alive in the name of Jesus. This is a house of miracles. We bring everything to the feet of Jesus. Everything in the name of Jesus. This is a house of miracles💗🙏🙌💯⚓️

Some Storms Clear Your Path

Good morning sweet friends! Happy Saturday!

I don’t know what you might be going through, but I just wanted to encourage you today. The storms of life come to each one of us but Jesus is there with you…every step of the way. You may feel alone but you are not alone.

It’s because of your trials you are being made stronger with every wave crashes against you.

Keep breathing my friend.

Just take one more step.

Don’t stop.

I can promise there will be times when we all want to quit. Wanting to quite is human nature and totally understandable. You just want the pain or the problems to go away. Been there, done that…..bought the T-shirt.

We all get weary and tired, often times it’s during the weariness we stop doing the life giving things that help keep us going. We say to ourselves, “What’s the use?” I totally get it. But when we’re tired we don’t always make the right decisions because our mind is cloudy and our feelings are all discombobulated. Then we forget our purpose and that’s never good!

Lots of things happen in the middle of our trials and it’s especially important to not quite and keep going. With each crushing blow we can doubt the love of God. Have you ever doubted the love of God? I know I have. We can also doubt he can cause anything to work out for our good! I’m guilty of thinking , “There is absolutely NO WAY God can turn this around or make it turn out for me good.” We can think he’s forgotten us too. Oh, but can I just tell you “Precious one, He hasn’t forgotten YOU. He sees YOU and Oh how He loves YOU and with a resounding YESSS! He can work ALL things out for your good…..And He will!”

This moment, this trial, this storm….it’s time to find your BRAVE.

It’s time to keep going!

It’s NOT time to quit and give up.

YOU ARE ANOINTED FOR HARD.

Understandably, you may look defeated and even feel defeated but YOU ARE A CHILD OF THE KING. Walking in VICTORY AND PURPOSE.

DEFEAT IS NOT YOUR NAME!

OVERCOMER IS YOUR NAME!

Perseverance is in your blood.

You were born for such a time as this.

We gotta get in agreement with His word and say what He says about us.

Prophecy to those dry bones!

Speak life to the broken places in your life.

The power of life and death is in YOUR TONGUE.

Hope y’all have a blessed and wonderful weekend.

Big hugs,

Nicole💗

The word says
“For the spirit of heaviness”
“Put on the garment of praise”
That’s how we fight our battles (yeah) This is how I fight my battles. It may look like I’m surrounded. But I’m surrounded by You. This is how I fight my battles🔥🙌💗🙏💯

Enter In

Good morning y’all! Hope you are doing well. I feel like I have a word from the Lord for you today. So much is going on around us in these crazy times but God says its time to ENTER IN sweet friend!

Enter into the promises of God!

Enter into His Presence!

You are about to see the supernatural come to pass! You are right on the edge so DON’T GIVE UP!!

Keep PRESSING IN!

Keep asking, keep seeking, and keep knocking!!

Those things you’ve been praying for, that breakthrough it’s going to supernaturally come to pass!

God is working even when you can’t see it.

We need to stand on the promises of His Word because NOTHING is to big for Him.

Whatever you’re going through, it’s NO match for our Almighty God!

One word from You
Things change on Your authority
Your word, it’s true
Things change on Your authority
One word; from You.”

The enemy has come only to steel, kill, and destroy! Oh BUT HE came that we may have life to the full, till it overflows.

Are you overflowing? Don’t worry if you can’t answer yes, you are not alone.

If I’m honest right now no I’m not in that overflowing part of life He died for me BUT I’m in that pressing and contending for part of life.

Lots of things have happened the last few months, things that have been extremely difficult but I’m trusting God with all that is within me and I KNOW that he works ALL things out for my good and He will for you too sweet friend.

I can’t explain why but sometimes we just gotta contend a little longer.

As we are contending for the things we are believing God for, let our posture be on our knees as we look up to the One who has the power to change things, heal things, and restore things. I don’t know about you but I need some things in our life changed, healed, and restored. The good news is God is able! He is trustworthy. He is still in the miracle making business.

Contend, pray, and believe just a little bit longer and ENTER INTO His presence as you do and things will change.

I declare you are walking in the God’s authority and the plans of the enemy are destroyed and annihilated in Jesus name! As you release the promises of God over your life, your words are full of resurrection power and none of them will fall to the ground!

Decree it with confidence my friend! For your declarations will truly come to pass! I am strong! I am fearless! No matter what am faced with only good can come out of this! God works ALL things for my good. NO weapon formed against me will prosper! Amen!

Hope you guys have a blessed and wonderful day! If you have any prayer requests please let me know I’d love to pray for you.

Big hugs,

Nicole💗

One word from You
Things change on Your authority
Your word, it’s true
Things change on Your authority

Will Heaven not prevail and strongholds not be moved?
Will spirits not be silenced and cower at His rule?
For if my God is for me then what have I to fear?
And I will not deny Him the glory that is His
Will Heaven not prevail and strongholds not be moved?
Will spirits not be silenced and cower at His rule?
For if my God is for me then what have I to fear?
And I will not deny Him the glory that is His, oh
Heaven will prevail and strongholds will be moved
Shout it out
Spirits will be silenced and cower at His rule
I know my God is for me so what have I to fear?
For nothing will deny Him the glory that is His

One word from You
Things change on Your authority
Your word, it’s true
Things change on Your authority

Heaven will prevail and strongholds will be moved
Spirits will be silenced and cower at His rule
I know my God is for me so what have I to fear?
For nothing will deny Him the glory that is His

That Girl Was Me….

That Girl Was Me….

https://nikhop320.wordpress.com/2018/06/26/that-girl-was-me/
— Read on nikhop320.wordpress.com/2018/06/26/that-girl-was-me/

September is National Suicide Prevention month so I thought I’d reshare you story. I hope it will bless and encourage someone.

Big hugs,

Nicole💗🙏

My Passion And My Struggle

Hey y’all !! What’s up? What’s up? I haven’t been here in a while, lots going on in our neck of the woods. How about y’all?

My hubby is STILL working from home y’all! Prolly no plans to go back in the office till the first of the year.

Imma lose my mind y’all 🤣🤣🤣🤣

My Daddy is in the process of moving here so we are trying to find him a place and get him settled.

Had some close family members with some serious health and my grandmother past away about a month or so ago. No one was able to be with her and she died all alone and I think that just made it more difficult. There are some other things but I can’t share them. Just a difficult season here, which I know it is for many of you.

Had a lot on my mind as we’ve being going through all these different things. Add in my health issues and school, no alone time, being stuck at home 🤪 and the Rona I’ve found myself frozen at times, maybe you can relate to that.

Some of you know I’ve been in school to become a Holistic Health and Wellness practitioner which I’m so excited about this journey the Lord has had me on. It’s just taken me a little longer than I thought it would but it’s ok Imma get there. It’s ALL in Gods timing.

Extending grace to myself is so much harder than it is to do for someone else. I’ve had a lot going on around me and IN me. Some of you know I’ve struggled with ED…….eating disorder. Sometimes ED screams so loud and other days I feel victorious and it’s so quite. I’m in counseling with a nutritionist who is awesome but imma just say it’s hard work and it’s an every day battle.

A battle to NOT weigh myself everyday.

A battle to eat lunch or not eat lunch.

A battle to not restrict food.

A battle to not eat a bunch of cookies or a big cup of Cheeseballs.

It’s just a battle.

I know the battle belongs to the Lord but sometimes we’ve done things for so long they become ingrained in us and they become a habit and it is a process of overcoming.

So where am I at today? And this sooooo soooo important to recall these things.

I’m not where I wanna be but I’m not where I use to be either.

Well….I’m no longer abusing laxatives or diuretics. I haven’t done that in 2 years or more. That’s a big ole W!!! 🎉

There were days I would wake up and decide I’m not going to eat today and I wouldn’t. Now I’ve come to realize that restricting food was a form of punishment to myself. I can tell you that thought hasn’t crossed my mind in months, PRAISE THE LORD!! 🙏🙌🎉

I’m not weighing myself everyday. Y’all literally don’t even know what an amazing accomplishment this is. I would weigh myself everyday, sometimes 2-3 times a day. In order to do this though I had to remove the scale from the bathroom and outta my sight. The first week was so hard I almost got up in the middle of the night to weigh myself, I know it sounds crazy. But that’s ED for ya! I did really well for about 2 or 3 months and not even sure what happened but I decided to go to it’s deep dark hiding place and pulled that evil scale out and stepped on it. THAT WAS A BAD MISTAKE FOR ME! It set me over the top because I had actually gained a little weight. I got in all kinds of fear and old patterns started showing up. Imma do this, Imma do that. I’m not gonna eat this or that. Imma exercise for X amount. That’s ED behavior and it’s what I’m trying to overcome.

But here’s the thing, I’m finally allowing my body and metabolism to heal from all the dieting and self destructive behavior I’ve done to my body so that’s going to happen before it gets better. You can’t put your body through hell for years and years and expect it to perform a peak condition in just a few months. NO it took me a lifetime to get here. It’s a healing process kinda like how our hearts have to heal after being broken. I could just choose something quick and fast because so often quick and fast works, we see results but its temporary and we find ourselves right back in the same place 6 months or 2 years from now at least that’s been my experience. At this place in my life I’m choosing healing and finally getting to the root and freedom even if it takes me a lifetime.

So my whole purpose when the Lord lead me to my counselor, Hope who lead me to the nutritionist, Amie. I said to her I don’t want to lose weight…..well I mean the flesh part of me does but the inner man of me wants freedom and healing and to finally have a healthy relationship with food AND the scale AND love my body AND not curse it.

Far to long I’ve gained my worth and value over what I saw in the mirror and what number I saw on the scale. You may not be able to relate to that particularly. For you it might be how your house looks, the clothes your wear, your job or title, car you drive, your kids, neighborhood you live in, etc. At some point most of us at have tried to find our value in other things. I’m hear to tell you it will LEAVE YOU EMPTY and searching for more my friend!!

Only Jesus can feel that hole that we try so desperately to fill with other things.

Another BIG W 🎉 is I’m eating lunch almost every single day. I haven’t done that in yeeeaaaarrrssss y’all! That’s incredible! But let me tell you how scary that is. To add in eating lunch….a meal I haven’t ate in years AND NOT WEIGHING MYSELF. That’s straight up dope right there!! Lol 😂 But also sooo scary.

I’ve felt for so many years the Lord pull me to Health and Wellness Coaching and Holistic things because I’ve been through so much health wise and it’s always fascinated me.

It’s been my passion AND MY STRUGGLE.

Only GOD can turn, a MESS into a MESSAGE, a TEST into a TESTIMONY, a TRIAL into a TRIUMPH, a VICTIM into a VICTORY.

Let me ask you, do you know what your passionate about?

What causes you pain?

What has been your struggle?

Have you been suffering alone?

Let me just say that’s exactly what the enemy wants you to do is isolate yourself and make you feel all alone when in reality there are many others with the same struggles you have. You just need to find someone you can be vulnerable with, that’s why small groups are so important. Gotta get that plug in lol. We are better together!

This is what I can tell you, it may not make sense but what you’ve struggled with, what has caused you agonizing pain, what’s caused you to isolate is more than likely also something your passionate about and I’ll go even further to say that it could even be YOUR CALLING! Of course, only you know that. But very often that’s the case.

For me sometimes the voice of doubt and insecurity is so loud in my ears….Did God really tell you to do this Nicole? People want somebody who has it all together and knows their stuff. That’s what I tell myself but truth in my heart says, I want someone who’s been in the pit themselves and who knows exactly where I’ve been or where I’m at. I’m willing to bet that’s what you want too.

I read something today that so spoke to me because there are so many days as I go through this process that I feel unqualified and I feel like why on earth would someone ever listen to me I’m STILL STRUGGLING and quite honestly it may always be the “throne in my flesh” but I WILL continue on my journey of wholeness and freedom.

This was the devotion blog. “Currently, I’m in a season where anorexia is trying to win again. Let me share some truth with you. What ever battle you’re facing today, whether it’s comparison, doubt, pride, lust, self harm, fill in the blank ____. This does not define you! My eating disorder does not define me. It’s apart of my story and my story is still being written, Your story is still being written!”

This is as real as it gets right here folks. She’s STILL struggling and she’s STILL helping and encouraging people. I LOVE THAT SO MUCH! “It’s part of her story,” just like it’s part of MY STORY AND YOUR STORY. We don’t have to have it all together to help someone we just need to be willing and available.

What I hope and pray people see is the real me, the one who will sit down with you and take the mask off and say “Hey, this is my struggle too and precious friend you’re not alone.” This is me in my brokenness….my passion and my struggles!

I AM A TROPHY OF GRACE AND SO ARE YOU SWEET FRIEND!

God bless you and know that I am praying for you.

Big hugs,

Nicole💗

Chicken Egg Roll In A Bowl

Y’all!!! This is delish and it’s so easy! It’s also gluten free, low carb, and keto friendly. Winner winner, chicken dinner🤣

Do you love Asian food? Goodness we do. We have the best Chinese restaurant here called Panda House and they have THE BEST gluten free menu! I love them!

But when I want to make something at home this is one of my go too meals.

An interesting difference is I use Coconut Aminos. What are Coconut Aminos you ask?🤔 Basically, it’s a healthy alternative to soy sauce. I have Celiacs so I can’t have gluten which is in soy sauce. Nowadays they do have gluten free soy sauce but it’s awfully salty if you ask me plus my daughter has an allergy to wheat and soy lol so that’s kinda how I came across Coconut Aminos.

Amazing benefits if you ask me! Why not give it try and start adding it to you daily meals.
(Above image borrowed from Dr. Axe)

Ingredients:
4-5 Chicken Breast- cut bite size or shedded if you like.
2 Packages coleslaw mix
1/2 medium onion, chopped
2.5 Teaspoons mined garlic
1 Teaspoon ginger- optional
1 Scrambled egg small pieces- optional (Its very tasty)
3-4 Tablespoons Trader Joe’s or Bragg’s Aminos (To taste) OR Soy Sauce
1-2 Teaspoons rice vinegar (optional)

Directions:
Cook the chicken breast until done, and cut or shred it, put to the side.
2 Tablespoons of Kerrigold butter. I put in a little bacon grease too😉 Add onions, garlic to pan and sauté.
Add coleslaw mix and cook for about 15 mins, then mix in chicken.
Add ginger, Trader Joe’s or Bragg’s Coconut Aminos, and rice vinegar (optional)
Cook another 5-10 mins.

ENJOY!😋

Other varieties are using roll of Jimmy Dean HOT sausage, shrimp, or you can use a combination.

Health Tip Of The Day:

Try making 1 change this week and just be consistent with it. If you mess up it’s ok, just simply start again. Pick one and work on it till it becomes a habit.

Progress not perfection.

– Drinking half your weight in water for one week.

-Exercising or walking 20-30 minutes 3 days for one week.

– Cutting out sugar for one week.

Have a great day!

Big hugs,

Nicole💗

The Body Of Christ Needs You & Your Gifts

Hey y’all!! How’s it going in your neck of the woods? I’ve been spring cleaning…UGH! Washing drapes, cleaning walls, floors, linens…it really needed to be done. I really need help with all this though, now my back is a mess as I sit on my heating pad and write this lol.

I was just wonder if you truly know how special you are?

Do you know that you have gifts and talents that someone else needs?

Sweet friend YOU have been anointed for such a time as this. God has a great plan and purpose for you, a plan that only you can fulfill.

Someone out there needs the gifts and talents that only you have, they need you to step out into your destiny so they can be changed and set free!

The Church….the body of Christ needs YOU.

There’s so many areas you could serve in and we will talk about some of them. Some you may have never thought about and others maybe you don’t have in your church yet but maybe you could start them.

It’s great to go to church but it’s a whole other level when you are serving in your church in the capacity you are called too. You become part of a family, a team, and you grow spiritually. You have ownership of your church, it’s kinda hard for me to describe. It’s just different then just going to service and rushing out. I LOVE MY CHURCH! I’m pretty sure it’s the best church on the planet💗

Areas To Serve In At Church:

1. Kids or Nursery- This may well be your calling to work with children or babies, what a blessing that is if that’s you. It’s so needed. Me however, you would find out real quick that was not my gifting LOL🤣🙈

2. Leading a small group. That’s what makes a big church small. It’s the life of a church. It’s where relationships are made. Masks are taken off, you can become the real you with a group of people, heal from past hurts and get freedom.

I love small groups and I love leading ladies small groups. I’ve led ladies small groups for abt 10 years or more I guess. For the last 2 semesters I stepped out and been a Small Group Coach and loved it. It’s been challenging but an amazing experience. My passion and my heart is definitely with ladies small groups.

3. Greeters. Maybe that’s you! You like smiling and welcoming everyone. That’s me, I love being a greeter too! I love people and I love hugging 🤗

Some of my greeter peeps at Christmas!

4. Helps Team. Maybe you prefer to work behind the scenes. You enjoy helping to clean, plan events, organize, or do parking team.

5. Worship, singing, sound and technology. Those are all also a amazing gifts but singing yeah that’s not mine, LOL. I love singing so much but you don’t want to hear it LOL. But hey it’s a joyful noise though, right?🤣

6. Prison ministry. What a blessing that is and such a need.

7. Visiting the elderly and shut ins. Such a great ministry. They love to have visitors or people to come sing to them or even do a craft with them.

8. Ushers. These guys are great, they are responsible for seating guests and maintaining order in the service.

9. Church Security. Are you a cop or security officer then what better way to serve at your church then helping to protect those around you.

10. Prayer. Maybe praying is your strength and interceding for others is your gift. That’s incredible. We need you! Prayer Warriors Needed!!

11. Lawn Care. You might be great at yard work so this is right up your alley. You can help spruce things up around the church. Pressure wash, cut the grass, plant flowers, weed eat, edge, lay pine straw, etc.

12. Sign Language Interpreters. Let me just say what a beautiful blessing this is and how it is so needed. Our oldest daughter is hearing impaired and wears hearing aids. She does wonderful but having an interpreter is such an added blessing.

13. Special Needs Children. This too is such a big need. You have many parents that aren’t even able to come to church because they have a special needs child and the church doesn’t offer anything for them. I’m so thankful our church has a wonderful program.

14. Dream Center Volunteer. It’s an outreach ministry center where they are changing and transforming lives. Dive in, I’m sure you can find something here you could do.

15. Celebrate Recovery. Maybe you’ve struggled with and addiction or life issue in the past and you’ve found freedom. With CR you can lead and come along side others who are struggling and help them find freedom too.

There’s many other things you can do, this is just to name a few to get you started thinking.

We need all these areas and many more to function as the body of Christ. I don’t look at one being better being than the other and I hope you’d not either. See God has placed certain gifts in you and without you doing your part, the body of Christ just isn’t quite right without you.

It NEEDS YOU!

It needs YOU to function in proper order. Whether you’re a greeter, a worship leader, nursery person, small group leader, coach, or someone who cleans things up, hear me…YOU ARE VALUABLE and you do what God has called you to do. No shame or pride, do it unto the Lord sweet friend!

SWORD OF THE SPIRIT:

“Each one should use whatever gift he has received to serve others, faithfully administering God’s grace in its various forms.” 1 Peter 4:10

So then, as we have opportunity, let us do good to everyone, and especially to those who are of the household of faith.” Galatians 6:10

Love must be sincere. Hate what is evil; cling to what is good. Be devoted to one another in brotherly love. Honor one another above yourselves. Never be lacking in zeal, but keep your spiritual fervor, serving the Lord. Be joyful in hope, patient in affliction, faithful in prayer. Share with God’s people who are in need. Practice hospitality.” Romans 12:9-13

And the King will say, ‘I tell you the truth, when you did it to one of the least of these my brothers and sisters, you were doing it to me!’ Matthew 25:40

Feed the hungry, and help those in trouble. Then your light will shine out from the darkness, and the darkness around you will be as bright as noon.”
Isaiah 58:10

for the equipping of the saints for the work of service, to the building up of the body of Christ;” Ephesians 4:12

As each one has received a special gift, employ it in serving one another as good stewards of the manifold grace of God. 1 Peter 4:10

Only, as the Lord has assigned to each one, as God has called each, in this manner let him walk. And so I direct in all the churches. 1 Corinthians 7:17

It’s time for YOU to rise up precious one, you are called and anointed for such a time as this. If you don’t know what your called to do, that’s ok no worries, just step out and find out. Try different areas until you find the right spot.

Your destiny awaits you!

God bless you and happy Saturday!!

Big hugs,

Nicole💗

God Is The Difference Maker

Hey y’all!🤗 How’s it going in your neck of the woods? I had my infusion Tuesday so I’ve been resting the last couple of days. It went better than last month praise the Lord!

We are all called to be difference makers but today I want to remind you that God is the DIFFERENCE MAKER in your life!!

God is the GAME CHANGER in your circumstances.

Difference Maker means One who has an impact or effect; One who brings about change. Yep that’d be my God!! He’s The ONE, who makes an impact and bring about change in our lives.

God’s promise is true for you, “I will give you a new heart and put a new spirit in you; I will remove from you your heart of stone” Ezekiel 36:26

I ALONE AM THE DIFFERENCE MAKER!

Whatever you need in your life Gods got it! You feel lost or broken, cry out to Him….He is near. You’re having trouble in your marriage or with your kids….call on the Difference Maker he’s got it! He knows just how to fix it!

Game Changer means a newly introduced element or factor that changes an existing situation or activity in a significant way

Do you need a Game Changer factor in your life changed in a significant way?

Do you have a work situation?

A family situation?

Alcohol or drug problem?

Health issues?

Financial needs?

We all need something.

Gods the Game Changer.

He’s waiting for you to ask Him to come into that situation, that problem and allow Him to do his work. He’s got just the right element to change that situation and completely blow your mind. He wants to do exceedingly, abundantly, above all we could hope, ask or think….

You need to stop looking at what you can’t do or what you don’t have and look at what GOD CAN DO!! God’s presence and power, His Anointing is what pushes you into your destiny! It’s what changes EVERYTHING!

When you hear nothing is ever gonna change, don’t you believe the lies of the enemy! Talk back to the devil! God can use ANY situation for YOUR GOOD!! See your worth and value is based on WHO YOU ARE IN Him and NOTHING ELSE!!! Remember that when that lying spirit is whispering in your ear.

You are NOT to far gone my friend. God WILL use what the enemy meant for harm and turn it to your good if you will let him and He WILL complete what He has started in YOU.

He’s the God of completion.

He’s concerned about what concerns you. My friend, He WILL establish and ground YOU and strengthen YOU!!

He is FOR YOU NOT AGAINST YOU!

He’s the Difference Maker and the Game Changer.

Big hugs,

Nicole💗

Divorcing ED- Life With An Eating Disorder

Hey y’all! Hope you guys are doing well. Things have been hopping here. Hubby working from home also means home projects right. I swear that man can’t sit still for a second, then he sucks me in lol🤣

I thought I’d let you in on a secret…..lean in real close. I’M DIVORCING ED! There I said it!

Secrets out now.

No! ED is not my husband’s name. ED is someone who has been with me for too many years to count.

ED is the eating disorder I have struggled with for what seems like a lifetime but I’ve decided we are breaking up for good and getting a divorce! He doesn’t serve me well anymore, well he never really did, he was just how I coped.

Do you know ED too?

ED…..I.e. sin….took me further than I ever thought I’d go and kept me longer than I ever thought I’d stay.

I have been in counseling with a nutritionist who deals with eating disorders and Imma tell you how wonderful, hard and challenging it’s been.

My first experience with a nutritionist when I was finally ready to deal with ED didn’t go well. She would say things like “You need to only eat this or that.” or “If you drink that Dr. Pepper your only hurting yourself” Even better was the time I didn’t like one of the supplements she gave me, it was like horrible mud like substance you drank with a hint of mint🤣🤢🤮 she said “I guess you just don’t want to get well.” Are you kidding me?? Lady, I guilt myself enough I don’t need more guilt and condemnation or rules and regulations from you, that’s what got me here to start with. So needless to say that didn’t last long. I knew she wasn’t good for me. She was setting me up to fail. Inevitably I was gonna fail or make a mistake but failing wasn’t a bad thing nor did failing make me a failure….she was not teaching me that though. It’s all part of the process. Plus, she was not celebrating the small victories I was making.

This time Amie, my nutritionist now she is amazing! What a gift she is. She challenges me but also celebrates the small victories with me. The truth is if I eat 3 meals 1 day that’s amazing considering for many years I haven’t done that.

If I wake up and tell myself I’m not gonna eat today but then go through the process of talking to myself and on purpose choose to make the decision to eat regardless of what my feelings are saying, that’s another victory!

If I go 2 days and don’t weigh myself that’s another victory. I’ve gone 5 so far, 5 DAYS OF NOT WEIGHING MYSELF. That is nothing short of miracle to me.

I’m learning though if slip up it’s not the end of the world, just get back up and start all over. Being perfect is so overrated. Not that I ever was but it was something so engrained me and I learned to try not to rock the boat, be as perfect as you possibly can they will love and accept you THEN. How misguided I was.

What I look like, how I dress, the car I drive, the house I live in, or the job I have…none of that matters or has eternal purpose. Having a relationship with MY JESUS is what matters. That is what’s life changing and as I walk this out and I feel like I can’t do it anymore I cry out to Him one more time, and one more time, and one more time. He’s there waiting to pick me up, and sweet friend He’s there waiting for you. You have access to the King.

I mentioned to someone the other day I was seeing a nutritionist for my eating disorder and the first thing they asked was “Wow! How much weight have you lost?” I just thought to myself “Oh my word! What’s wrong with people?” That’s the whole problem. Weight, food, exercise, not eating, binging, the scale, all of it turned into idols. I’m not trying to lose weight, of course I’d like too I’m a woman lol but my main goal is to have a healthy relationship with food.

To not be afraid to eat this or that.

To not be afraid to eat 3 meals a day or a snack.

To eat lunch and not be afraid.

To not weigh myself everyday….I’ve been a slave to the scale for as long as I can remember.

Anyone relate to that? 🤣🤣🤣

That’s our culture though. We think if we lose enough weight or if we are the perfect size we will be happy and all of life will fall into place and we’ll have no problems. That’s simply not true. But if you watch the Jenny Craig commercials they’ll have you believe “Because of Jenny Craig, I’m a happier person, a happier mom, a happier wife. I’m more confident.” Well I was a size six and it didn’t change what was going on on the inside. Until the root is addressed you will repeat the cycle and that’s true for anything. I just hate the media plays on our emotions especially women, you are just not quite good enough….YET! Try this and maybe you will be. I’m tired of listening to the lies! THE devil IS A LIAR!

How about you try some Jesus instead of all the worldly things it has to offer. Sorry for my soapbox. Finding our worth and value from the mirror or the scale will never fulfill you.

But having a relationship with Jesus will.

Back on topic, lol, for me most days I would eat a small breakfast, never lunch, and eat dinner. Some days I wouldn’t eat at all, I would consciously make a decision to not eat today. Punish myself for the shame and guilt I carried of living with this secret, and other secrets and trauma from my childhood. I was also fearful of lots of foods that in moderation are actually healthy for you.

One of the things I’ve been working on is incorporating lunch into my schedule. I know, sounds simple but for someone with ED, not so simple. But I’ve done pretty well, not every day yet but 4-5 out of 7 I’d say. That’s HUGE! Even if it’s something small.

Progress not perfection.

Forward motion.

My nutritionist asked me how I felt about not weighing myself everyday and did I think that was something I could start to work on. Immediately, tears streamed down my face and I said “ Yes, I will do it.” The scale and I have had a meeting together every morning for yeeaaarrs, sometimes weighing myself more than once a day. Despite how unhappy it made me, I still have always been drawn to it even though I knew it wasn’t helpful to me. So last week I hid it in the closet so I won’t see everyday lol. The first couple of days were really hard and I almost got up in the middle of the night to weigh myself. Crazy I know. But that’s the bond ED and I have. His clutches run deep. Have you ever experienced anything like this? It’s powerful, BUT MY GOD IS BIGGER.

I’m divorcing ED to have a relationship with me, to get to know me and a deeper relationship with my Savior. To get my voice back instead of shoving things further down. I’m overcoming the misguided self. To heal the proper way from past hurts and trauma. It’s hard work and it may take a long time and it may be painful but I’m up for the job. I can do ALL THINGS through Christ who strengthens me and so can you sweet friend.

Your struggle may not be ED, it may be drugs, alcohol, shopping, pornography, or something else, we all have something. I urge you to give it completely over to the Lord. Press in and contend for your freedom. He will set your shackles free. FREEDOM IS THERE FOR THE TAKING. You are a new creation IN CHRIST. What the enemy meant to harm and destroy God will work for your good.

NOTHING AND I MEAN NOTHING IS TOO BIG FOR HIM!!

I have worked on this blog for 2-3 days and was set to release today but after I watched our church service this morning I was simply blown away again by my God. How he loves me (you) so much, and how he confirms what he’s placed on my heart to share. I’m even more certain of what He wants for me.

I will tell of the mercy of the Lord and proclaim the great things He has done for me and continues to do.

The Misguided Self- Life With ED and My Broken Past (click below)

https://nikhop320.wordpress.com/2019/10/16/ive-had-an-epiphany/

Sword the Spirit:

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.

Proverbs 31:30 Charm is deceptive and beauty is fleeting, but a woman who fears the Lord will be praised.

Romans 14:17 For the kingdom of God is not a matter of eating and drinking, but of righteousness, peace and joy in the Holy Spirit.

Romans 12:1 Brothers and sisters, in view of all we have just shared about God’s compassion, I encourage you to offer your bodies as living sacrifices, dedicated to God and pleasing to him. This kind of worship is appropriate for 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.

Psalm 145:18 The Lord is near all who call out to Him, all who call out to Him with integrity.Psalm 55:22 Cast your cares on the LORD and he will sustain you; he will never let the righteous be shaken.

1 Corinthians 10:13 The only temptations that you have are the same temptations that all people have. But you can trust God. He will not let you be tempted more than you can bear. But when you are tempted, God will also give you a way to escape that temptation. Then you will be able to endure it.

Romans 8:26 In the same way, the Spirit helps us in our weakness. We do not know what we ought to pray for, but the Spirit himself intercedes for us through wordless groans.

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.

Philippians 4:13 I can do all things through Christ which strengtheneth me.

Psalm 29:11 The Lord will give strength to his people; the Lord will bless his people with peace.

Psalm 147:3 He healeth the broken in heart, and bindeth up their wounds.

How I Need You- Highlands Worship

You fashioned me, formed my heart,
Searched my soul, and know every thought
Love so great, but never too far
Through the storm, You’re the calm, every war, You’ve already won
Life’s secure in Your loving armsJesus, Jesus, oh, how I need You
You stay the same, You are good in Your ways
Jesus, Jesus, oh, how I need You
You are enough, all my trust is in You, LordYou are powerful, God above it all
I believe in You, I believe in You
You do miracles, the impossible
I believe in You, Jesus

See I’m contending for my freedom from ED every day and renewing my mind. What are you contending for? Would love to hear from you.

Big hugs,

Nicole💗