Promoting giving back. Promoting servant leadership. Promoting giving others tools to expand their life which in turn will expand the lives of those in their world. Promoting selfless service. Promoting love!
If you haven’t had a chance to learn about Storyteller Pens, then please click on the following links and you will see a beautiful example of love!
You can reach Mike Allen through the Facebook page or email him at Mantech_2@yahoo.com
Being a true servant of God can sometimes be exhausting and lonely but it can also be very rewarding. If you can support Storyteller Pens and Guatemala with the purchase of a pen for that special someone or for a gift for a business partner, maybe even for yourself, then “THANK YOU”.
Everyone can have a place in this servant process. Drop Mike a message and encourage him and his team in their efforts to bring hope to a community/country that doesn’t have much.
Thank you for reading this and thank you for caring for others.
America’s Got Talent, The Voice, American Idol, and America Ninja Warriors are just to name a few of the TV shows that highlight talent that people have. I sit back and watch these shows and wonder………. “why was I not gifted with these talents?”. Athletics was never my thing, in fact I joined band in 5th grade mainly because you didn’t have to do PE if you were in band. Now, understand, I stayed in band until I graduated, so I loved it despite my initial reasoning. As for singing, I joke with my kids as I sing along with whoever is on stage at the time and say, “I’m going to try out!” and my kids give me that “you got to be kidding” look. I wouldn’t make it through the initial phase.
But talent isn’t all about voice or athletics. So much more! God has gifted each of us in various ways. So Yes, I have talents, gifts!
In Matthew 25, the bible talks of talents of the biblical times, the Ten Virgins, Bags of Gold and the Sheep and the Goats. These stories/parables are about how we use what God has given us. Are we prepared, planning ahead, using the talents when needed? Are we thrifty, careful but capable in using our talents so to use them wisely to create more abundance? And do are we generous with our talents, giving them to others in need, while still taking care of our own needs?
From the teachings of these stories/parables, I’m to understand that with whatever talents/gifts, whether it be financial or otherwise, I’m to use them, not hoard them for a later date. I’m to share my gifts through relationships and help build others up so they too will be willing to use their gifts. So, I pray each day that HE will show me how he wants me to use what he has given me for his glory. Showing others how magnificent HE is!
So I ask you………… “How are you using your gifts?”
If you are unsure what your gifting is or how to go about using them, please comment on this post or go to my home page and contact me. I would love to walk through this journey with you.
Deuteronomy 31:6 Be strong and courageous. Do not fear or be in dread of them, for it is the Lord your God who goes with you. He will not leave you or forsake you.”
You know initially when reading this scripture years ago, I thought, “yea right, surely he is not talking to those like me who have suffered at the hands of others”. Surely he understands why I’m fearful, shamed, guilt ridden and anxious all the time. Never filling like I can measure up!
Yes, he was and is talking to me! I realized that with the Jeremiah verse.
Jeremiah 29:11 For I know the plans I have for you, declares the Lord, plans for welfare and not for evil, to give you a future and a hope.
So now I’m told, “Be strong and courageous, He will not leave you” and “I know the plans I have for you, to give you a future and a hope”. Do I believe him yet? I started to grasp what he is telling me. He has a plan! A real plan! Not my plan! And while he is working on my plan through me, he wants me to be brave!
The last couple of years, he has been showing me glimpses of His plan but I really didn’t know why, so I wouldn’t move. Then he pushed harder. Putting things in front of me that lead in the direction to fulfill the plan that he has laid out, time after time, I wondered. But why would he put the same things in front of me if he didn’t mean for me to jump on board with him. About this time, I was beginning to come around in the belief that he would give me what I needed, strength, courage, knowledge, wisdom, patience, stamina and the list goes on.
But there were still some pretty tall hurdles to jump if I was going to follow the path of his choosing. And what do you know, as soon as I accepted the offer to move forward with him, he provided the way regardless of the hurdle.
So I’m being brave. I’m going back to school! Didn’t really like it the 1st go around but here I go again. This time it’s a little different, I’m an adult and it’s actually something that I’m interested in! But Satan……….that stinkin’ ole Satan, loves to strike when the strikings good. He loves to poke fun at me in my vulnerable spots. He wants to stop me because he knows I’m heading in God’s direction and he doesn’t like that. I have to admit, I let him get to me sometimes but I quickly tell God what’s going on and Satan leaves. I’m learning to do that quicker and quicker. Maybe, just maybe, oneday I won’t let him get to me at all.
If you’re interested in what my Brave is, feel free to go to my home page and check it out. If you are interested in allowing me to walk with you as a coach, please feel free to contact me.
I hope to hear from you and I do ask that you pray for me as I journey down this path that God has me on. I can’t wait to see what the next chapter God has written looks like.
When I think about the last number of years or really the last number of days, it seems like they have sped by me with the speed of light or maybe even with the craziness of all the lights coming at me at one time, in multi-color. In many way it just seems like yesterday when I thought my parents, who had to have been in their thirties, were ancient! And now I’m almost twice that age. What does that make me, prehistoric!
Anyway, point being, life happens quickly it seems and comes at you from all directions. For many years, I simply lived that life making it through the day. Not really giving it a thought, except for just how I was going to make it. And now……………… I have decided………God is pushing me………to make it with a purpose.
I’ve learned a valuable lesson which helped me find my purpose. I’ve learned that God loves me. Yes, little ole, simple me! I could go through all the things that I’m NOT or those that I am. But those things would be my perception of me not God’s perception of me. And honestly, HIS is all that matters.
You know that until I realized how much God loved me and what my value was in HIM, I saw no value in myself and honestly didn’t even really love myself. Until this……..
Mark 12:30-31 Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind and with all your strength.’The second is this: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’ There is no commandment greater than these.”
So this is my purpose, “Love my neighbor as myself”. You see, I couldn’t do that until I loved myself.
I challenge you to take a good look and see if you love yourself as God loves you. Because if you don’t, you can’t love others.
I pray that you will study the scriptures, find His love and live your LIFE with purpose.
Everyone loves bubble wrap! Something about that popping sound that brings out the happy, joy filled, care free, expectant child in each one of us.
The anticipation of that sound keeps us at the edge of our seats just waiting to hear it. I wonder if I went and purchased a box of bubble wrap if it would carry away all the many fears, worries, struggles and painful things that I have had and still do in some way carry around within myself.
Some how I doubt it. That happy, joy filled, care free, expectant child inside, has be ripped away as I’ve aged and as I’ve lived this life. But wait, even though bubble wrap won’t do it, I know, I’ve experienced, I’ve held on to, the ONE thing, the ONE person that would.
Psalm 55:22 (NIV)“Cast your cares on the Lord and he will sustain you; he will never let the righteous be shaken.” Be sure to cast your fears or worries on God. If you feel stressed or worried, do not allow yourself to be shaken. God’s grace is enough.
I’ve heard and read this scripture so many times but somehow I really didn’t understand it. I was still searching for something external that would carry away all my pains. Although they may have carried them away, it was only temporary and sometimes I came out of it with even more pain.
I have had many pains and struggles through out my 58 years here on earth and I’m sure that there will be more. Some of those pains became real for me as a child and I was still carrying them around. The load got heavier and heavier with every day that I carried them. I have done well over the last several years to free myself of some of that load. Actually, it wasn’t “I” who freed me, it was God. But I had to allow HIM to do it. I had to understand that HIS Grace is Enough for me.
I had to understand and realize that there will be those pains and struggles that are solely mine and with my change and my repentance, God’s grace will allow me to let go of those things. But there will be pain and struggle in our lives that are caused by others and our change and our letting go will not affect that actions or feelings of the other. I had to understand that God’s grace will and does still cover me in those pains and struggles. Because He reminded me that I am not responsible for others or their actions and feelings. That is something that they will wrestle with God over.
So for me, I have casts my care to God. I fully understand that His Grace is enough and I can lean into Him to find that happy, joy filled, care free, expectant child. I do have much RELIEF in my soul.
We all do it! Drive through the fast food establishment that we love and grab us a meal that satisfies our hunger pains and sustains us. At least for a little while.
We do it even though we know that it may not be the best nutrition. And it may not truly satisfy our deepest desires of our taste buds. But it’s fast and it’s cheap.
It’s fine, I guess, that we all do the fast food line thing. But in other aspects of our lives, such as in our relationships, is the “fast food” method the best?
I would have to say, “NO”!
The fast food method in our relationships is not sustainable, they are superficial. They do not satisfy our hunger pains from the need for love (closeness), they leave us empty and a huge hole inside.
Think about it! If we were truly wanting a meal that would sustain us in the long run and totally fill us by satisfying our internal need for nutrition, then we wouldn’t go to a fast food establishment. We would choose a place where we could sit down, relax, share some meaningful conversation and enjoy a well balanced meal. All of which would totally fill our desires as a human being.
The same goes for relationships. Fast food relationships just won’t cut it! God placed deep in our souls, the desire real lasting relationships. Ones that fill our hearts desires, satisfy our nutritional love hunger pains and create meaningful and beautiful conversations.
Fast food relationships are just as it says, fast and not lasting. Nutritional, long lasting, deep filling and perfectly satisfying relationships take time.
Which would you choose?
Do you know how it feels to have that type of relationship?
Are you willing to be one that gives more than you take?
If you’d like to search deep inside yourself to discover how? Contact me and I’ll journey through this process with you.
You can find my email address on my “Contact Me” link.
I have found myself waking in the night, mind racing, thoughts tumbling around in my head and they won’t stop. I lie still, trying to do the tricks of my past so sleep will come again. It won’t! Counting backwards is not working this time. I am totally engulfed in my thoughts. They will not leave me.
Engulf is a verb that means being completely surrounded, soaked, or covered. Fire, snow, smoke, flood waters, or even violence are a few things that could engulf you.
Obviously, there are things that I need to pray to God about. Things that are weighing heaving. Things that I’m feeling a burden for. Things!
So, I get up, sit on the edge of the bed and start praying. I start with giving HIM praise for all he is and all he does for me. And that’s a long list! Then, remind him of my failings. Like he has forgotten! Then I remind myself, he may have not forgotten but he has definitely forgiven. Then I lay it all out there. Handing it over to him. Asking for his guidance and wisdom. Asking him to show me clearly what I can do with these things. Asking him to help me let go or move, which ever he needs me to do. Telling him my fears and dreams. Asking for his help.
Last night as I go through this process of listing all that is on my mind. I realize that there are 3 real areas of burdens. While speaking through these burdens with him I notice something. I notice that each burden has a completely different level of control for me.
The first burden is one that I’ve been wrestling with for a while and I have leaned heavily into him for guidance. I have moved and moved and moved, with nothing! The burden has not left me but my acknowledgment of having ABSOLUTELY NO CONTROL of the situation is real. Apparent! I have to let it go and let Him deal with.
The second burden is one the is very close to home. I see suffering and stress to others as a consequence. I feel a load of uncertainty with it. And I do have some control over it. Even though it may not be much, I have some. But the burden is, what does God want me to do with that control? How is he asking me to move and when is the appropriate time. The burden is real. The need for clarity is real. Leaning in is where I’m at.
The third burden was in total control of myself but I’ve allowed someone else to take that control. Yet, I’m still the one burdened with it.
Don’t we all do that? Have burdens that keep us up at night. That we at some level have had, do have or should have control of , yet we don’t.
For me, my burdens are felt deep within. For the most part you would not know that I carry the burden, but on the inside, I’m feeling them. My physical health takes a toll when I carry around burdens. I turn to food to try to engulf my burdens. So my body is suffering. For some of you it may be other things that you turn to, trying to engulf your pain.
But last night, while I was processing another sleepless night, I realized it at yet a new level. “I need to be engulfed by God”, allowing his grace to cover me totally and give me peace, so that I don’t over eat and loose sleep. I need to let his words engulf my thoughts. I need to allow the Holy Spirit to engulf my body so that I can hear him more clearly on what my next move is.
Romans 6:14 For sin will have no dominion over you, since you are not under law but under grace.
What burdens are you carrying around with you that you should allow God to engulf? When are you going to take the step to let him?