Breakthrough

Our definition of breakthrough often differs because we are not all seeking and desiring the same things out of life. The season of life that we are in also determines the nature and magnitude of the breakthrough we may be needing and also the degree to which we hunger for it. When we are younger we have more faith for certain things, because we are not marred by the realities of this world. But as we grow older and mature we become skeptics to what God can really do in and through our lives. But the truth is wether we are young or older God remains the same and so our faith should remain child like.

Every good and every perfect gift is from above, coming down from the father of lights with whom there is no variation or shadow due to change. Hebrews 1.17.

I have been in a long season of waiting and trusting for certain things to bear fruit in my life. I must say it has been a rollercoaster of note but as I have waited and trusted I have seen breakthrough in areas of my life I was not even aware needed breakthrough. Short of the long is I am grateful for the waiting because in it I matured and learnt golden nuggets that I know will go a long way.

As I move towards the light at the end of the tunnel I have faced great resistance, and been discouraged at times just by life’s circumstances. The past two months I have encountered flames and keeping up the faith has been hard  I won’t lie, but at the same time I really feel that God is refining me before I receive what I have been waiting for.

At times at the verge of our break through we face the most resistance because the enemy wants nothing more than to see us fail.

I have really had to trust in God, not only his word but also his promises over my life. There is a Bethel song that I am currently obsessed with called called Yes and Amen. I am actually listening to it as I write this post, it has been the soundtrack for what my own words often have failed to express to God in this season and has been the plug to continually seeking and trusting him.

Patience is not easy but it has also been a key towards receiving what God has promised me. There have been times in the waiting were people have offered me counsel that has not been appropriate to my situation because of their impatience over my own life and there has been times were I have really have valued words of wisdom from others. Trust me people can really be impatient with your own life, its actually crazy but lets not dwell on that. The key is to stay woke, and align any advice with what God has already told you.

I believe it is really okay to be selective when it comes to who you let speak into your life because not everyone wants to see you win.

In the spirit of always keeping it short and sweet, I really hope you never lose your fire in the pursuit of the breakthrough that God has promised you. It is often when we are so close to breakthrough that the fiery darts come to distract us, but keep up the faith for the joy set before you.

With love

Ethel

 

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Setting a Standard

We are a month into 2018, its February the month of love and I am thoroughly enjoying all the Valentines memes and banter on social media. It also seems as if we have clearly moved on from January disease, well at least on social media. I can safely say that the year has been kind to me so far and I have already learnt a lot in the past month that was January.

Well since the year has begun to move so swiftly, I have been thinking “deep” thoughts as one should about the decisions that we have to make in life. In 2018 I want to refine the way in which I make my decisions. I am realising more and more that the decisions I make now, echo into my future as well as into eternity and I don’t know about you but I really want to live my life well.

Inorder to make quality decisions that not only benefit me but those around me and ofcourse those in my future I have set myself on a course to make gold standard choices. I would best describe these as uncompromising decisions, that are not based on emotions or desparity but on what aligns with God’s best for me.

So what is God’s best… for every person God has a mandate, a purpose a blue print of what they should be living in and the more we seek Him daily the more we discover his plans for us and he in turn aligns us with his will.

Setting a standard before hand will go a long way in not compromising.

3 Keys to quality decision making.

1. We partner with God, as I have already mentioned above in order to make quality choices we have to be abiding in God. Before I make a big decision, I pray and ask for the wisdom to walk out my decions well.

2.I make lists, at times logic is your best friend and writing down the pros and cons and weighing them out is key, -personally seeing things on paper often gives me clarity on whats best.

3.Share with a friend or someone who is wiser and will hopefully be unbiased. We all have blind spots and at times it is better to share or ask someone to pray with you during your decision making process. The bonus is they can then also hold you accountable to the decision you would have made.

But he knows the way that I take and when he has tried me, I shall come out as gold. Job 23:10

Writing this post has actually spurred me even more to make golden choices and I hope you have been encouraged too as much as I am to make quality choices that will pave the way to greener pastures in life.

With Love

Ethel

 

Road blocks and Re-envisionment

Once in a while we get to a point were we feel stuck, and we may feel like we are carrying the weight of the world and are constantly having to motivate ourselves to get through each day. It may be that we are faced with lack of job satisfaction, unemployment, sickness in family, grief, divorce, diagnosed with a chronic illness or in  debt the list can go on and on. We live in a world of instant gratification and the patience to work through all these things is often lacking. We want a quick remedy, a quick fix to make everything A-ok.

This morning as I thought about certain seasons that I have gone through in life, seasons of sheer happiness and on the other hand rather bumpy, trying seasons I thought of this passage in Ecclesiastes 3. 

There’s a Right Time for Everything

There’s an opportune time to do things, a right time for everything on the earth:

2-8 A right time for birth and another for death,
A right time to plant and another to reap,
A right time to kill and another to heal,
A right time to destroy and another to construct,
A right time to cry and another to laugh,
A right time to lament and another to cheer,
A right time to make love and another to abstain,
A right time to embrace and another to part,
A right time to search and another to count your losses,
A right time to hold on and another to let go,
A right time to rip out and another to mend,
A right time to shut up and another to speak up,
A right time to love and another to hate,
A right time to wage war and another to make peace.

 

We all go through seasons of celebration and of sorrow or of contentment and discontent with our lives, however when the tough seasons come they always seem to last for the longest time.I have learnt that in those seasons having perspective is very important, it is good to take a step back and look at the situation objectively.

At times we are called to go through a storm to access the keys and tools to our purpose.

How do I personally re-envision myself?

  • I don’t always get to this place first, but asking God for wisdom and guidance for  me personally as a Christian is important because he sees the extent of the situation better than I do.
  • Speaking to friends and family, I often ask for advice from friends and family that I trust will give me sound advise. I know that these people know me enough to give me guidance that will be to my benefit. Surround yourself with people who will positively contribute to you life journey.
  • I look at the situation objectively and try to see how I can learn from it, whether there is an immediate action I can make to improve the situation or something I can do in future to not be in the same position again, especially if its something that is not beyond my control otherwise I remind myself that somethings are just not for me to fix.
  • I love to write and journal so I often journal my thoughts just so I can process them.
  • When faced with a tragedy or huge disappointment I have learnt allow myself to grieve, for as long as it takes, in order for that thing to not hinder my progress in the future. What you don’t work through will always resurface.
  • Lastly I engage in activities that remind me how good life is and how blessed I am to have the life I do. So that may be spending time with family, recreational activities, art and music what ever it is that helps you to relax.

When the storm finally passes, celebrate it with thanksgiving.Someone once said to me, when the season is over, what ever you would have gone through or faced you want to be able to say, I was faithful and I did not waver under pressure.

With Love

Ethel

No does not mean convince me!

I love quotes, I look for them on Instagram, on Facebook, on social media statuses and I screenshot them. Quotes are the reason my phone memory is forever begging me to relieve it from its daily constipation. To prove how quote crazy I am I currently have 807 screenshots in my phone and more than half of them are quotes.:

This particular quote:

Screenshot_2017-10-21-12-56-26-1

which I saw on Instagram has been ringing in my head for the past 2 or 3 weeks now, it is simple but says so much.

I used to be one of those people who struggled to say no, I always felt if something was asked of me, or if there was an event of some sort I had to drop everything and find myself there. #caretakerspiritalert #fomo. 

Have you heard of the term care taker spirit?

A person with a “caretaker spirit” is basically the non famous version of Olivier Pope, they love fixing everyones problems they take on illegitimate responsibilities. They are the jack of all trades when it comes to helping others, even when no one has asked them for help. I bet you are asking yourself well what’s wrong with that this person is an aspiring Mother Theresa, they love to help others. Let me try and explain this as best as I can.

I am at all means not saying that it is a bad thing to be a helper, in fact its human nature to want to help others to want to lend a hand and this is something we should be doing often. God calls us to love one another and to physically help others.

James 1:27New International Version (NIV)

 Religion that God our Father accepts as pure and faultless is this: to look after orphans and widows in their distress and to keep oneself from being polluted by the world.

I am however saying it is good to take a step back and see if you have the right tools to help the person or if you really do need to commit to that event. I mean you can not be doing everything and anything. Ask yourself is this a legitimate responsibility? Do I really need to go to that event? Is what this person is asking of me reasonable or are they taking advantage of your kindness and your willingness to help and always be there for them?

Boundaries are very important. If you have set boundaries in your head no one can convince you into doing something that is not for you to do.

In every relationship/friendship, there is a give or take. My friend once said to me, you need to ask God what his mandate is for each and every friendship/relationship is, in order for you to be effective. This statement has shaped the way I approach my daily interactions with people, the key to how I have found balance in my interactions with people. To be honest I am still growing at it.

You can not give the same amount of energy, time and resources to each and every person in your life. You will simply deplete yourself and that is when it becomes a chore to love and help others.

Signs of a YES MAN

  • Obviously they can not say no
  • Spend majority of their time wondering how they can fix situations that are not theirs to start with. Let God do his job honey – your job is to pray and wait for Gods instruction to do something if necessary.
  • Find reasons to justify why you need to do something
  • You are never rested
  • Me time has not seen you in ages
  • You are forever missing the promised land cause you stay in other peoples business

You can not be flapping to and fro like a moth searching for light, that just leads to ineffectiveness in the kingdom. Child, Jesus did not die for you to remain ineffective. Stay woke, don’t be convinced into doing things that are not yours to do.

With Love

Ethel

What were you doing?

You were in university for four years and you are still single what have you been doing? Most girls from where I am from have most likely been asked this interesting and some what confusing question. By the time you are 23, like me, it is somewhat a requirement for you to not only have an education but to also have a man thats husband material.

On my return home I was asked this question numerous times, I was initially taken a back but after the 3rd person had asked me the same question I then realised it was a norm and expected it. On two occasions I was even sat down in order for them to explain why it was important for me to be in a stable relationship at this point in my life.

To be honest it was not on my agenda to find love in college however I did keep my eyes open for potential princes, seeing that by the age of 18 my grandmother and aunt had already been asking me if I had that special someone in my life. I have always desired to get married young at some point 21 was my perfect age for matrimony. A little bit ambitious if I do say so myself.

Over the past 2 years I have watched my friends marry, some jump from relationship to another, some have children but this area of my life has somewhat been stagnant. I mean don’t get me wrong the drought has not been that real, I have had several crushes here and there but nothing worth mentioning or getting deep about.

Anyway I digress, for a while after being asked that peculiar question over and over again I began to think that I was either invisible to men or something was seriously wrong with me. I also developed this fear of never getting married and began to envision my eggs slowly depreciating. How crazy is that?

I will be 24 soon and I will most probably still be single on that day since my birthday is in a few days time well unless God sends Angel Gabriel to my husband to tell him its time. I am not going to lie as I am becoming a year older I have thought about my relationship status still noted as single on my Facebook. But I am also content in my singleness as I know that I will never get these years back.

As women we can be pressured into thinking that we have to take matters into our own hands in order to trap a man to want to marry us. Marriage has been displayed as an achievement a next chapter to complete in ones book and we can therefore feel like we are missing the mark if we are not yet married at a certain age.

My encouragement to all the single ladies is to take time to work on yourself while you are still single, we want the ‘perfect’ husband but what we need to keep in mind is that we also need to be the ‘worthy’ wife, a fragrant offering to our husbands. Do not be too caught up on the times, the age and in comparing yourself to others. It is good to take sound advice from family and friends however it is better to wait faithfully in God
until the day comes.

The father alone has authority to set those dates and times, and they are not for you to know. Acts 1vs 7

 

With Love

Ethel

 

A Journey to Wholeness

Wholeness, a term used among christian circles -in my opinion not often enough- meaning fully finding your identity and security in God as an individual and being comfortable in who you are, were you are at spiritually, emotionally, physically.

Acts 17vs 28 In him we move and have our being.

We all have this inherent desire in us to belong, a continual thirst to be complete to be whole, lacking nothing. Many of us in our busy day to day lives may not even be aware of this desire as it may be pushed back in our daily pursuits to climb the corporate ladder, meet deadlines, or look after families etc. Some of us may be aware of it but are unable to attain it because we simply do not know how, or we may be are afraid to start the journey as it my bring up hurts from the past.

Personally I only discovered the concept wholeness in its fullness this year. God has been working on me and in me on so many different levels. It has simply been a year of spiritual growth. One issue he has been focusing on this year has been this topic of wholeness. It came about when I least expected it.To say the least I was shook because I always thought I had it all together. Thank God, he revealed to me that I needed to be continually perfected and made whole in him.

How does one know they are not whole ?
• continually need to be affirmed by others
• jump from one relationship to another
• neediness, or as my friend calls it the Peter Pan Spirit
• continuously react form a place of being emotional
• struggle to be at peace, anxiety

My journey to wholeness has not been easy in fact it has been so messy. God started revealing to me the root of my insecurities, worked through past disappointments from previous relationships, friendships and disappointments from unfulfilled dreams or prophecies. I had to read the word, listen to talks on wholeness and identity in order to access the keys to my wholeness. It was a renewal of my mind, body and soul as I began to see God as the one who completes me, not people not relationships not achievements but God.
Being whole, complete in Christ gives you access to healthy relationships, as you understand yourself and who you are, you are able to understand what you need and who you need to compliment who you already are rather than to complete you.

Through his power to bring everything under his authority, he will change our humble bodies and make them like his glorified body. Philippians 3:21

With Love

Ethel