You Are NOT an Old Shoe!

(Overcoming Feelings of Rejection)

Have you ever felt like you who you are, isn’t good enough for anyone? Are you tired of relationships that don’t work and leave you feeling lost and confused? Are you feeling used, and now forgotten…like a dirty, broken shoe?

images We have all been rejected at some point in our lives, and it doesn’t feel good. Sometimes we don’t know why, which feels even worse, but it’s not a death sentence. We don’t qualify for every job, or relationship, or opportunity, that’s the reality of life, and that is why there is so much out there. There is something or someone right for you too.  On the other hand, there are a lot of broken people in the world; a lot of people carrying around past hurts and disappointments using rejection as a way to feel more powerful and be more popular, or get farther ahead etc.  Don’t lose yourself caring about someone who doesn’t mind losing you, or something never meant for you.

Healing can happen if you let it. It doesn’t come the day you decide you want a divorce. It doesn’t come the minute you find out you didn’t get the job. Rejection is one of the worst feelings of the human experience. Over time, fMRI studies have shown that the areas of the brain that become activated when we experience rejection, are the same areas activated when we experience physical pain. This is why rejection hurts our feelings so much. We are actually experiencing pain! [Psychology Today]   Many people don’t move on for a year or two – or more if ever –  after a divorce. Applying to jobs after six rejections letters doesn’t happen the same day. No one wants to be the one the one that wasn’t chosen. No one wants to be the shoe tossed in the corner unnoticed and unwanted. Rejection is not the end of the world, acceptance gives us hope, and a sense of worth.

You are a perfect work of art!  You exist because you have a great purpose. your value was determined by The Creator, not your neighbor, your Ex, or “that group of women” at work or in the church. You were not created to be sport for any man, so make today the day you RISE UP and stop living like an old shoe!   You are not worthless! You are attractive, and useful!

If you continue to tell yourself you’re never going to find the right one for you, you never will. If you are determined to believe that you aren’t qualified for a promotion or a better life, you’ll never be motivated to pursue anything. If you keep saying your whole life feels like one big rejection, you will only feel more rejected. Essentially, you have rejected yourself.

Conversely, if you speak words of life and acceptance to yourself, you will feel capable, empowered, and accepted in spite of the opinions of others.  Not everyone is going to like you, want you, care about you, or appreciate your worth, no matter what you do. That is also part of the human experience.  Some people just don’t like anyone who is not them because they believe they are the epitome of beauty, intelligence, and status. No matter what you do, you will always be less able, less attractive, less worthy, less likeable, less everything. It’s not you – its’ them!  Don’t let their insecurities rob you of the joy meant for you!  Not everyone can see your value, because they are trying so hard to make you see how your life is better because of them. You cannot make someone love you, but you have the power to become someone who can be loved.  You can be the person someone else wants to hire and be around.

Don’t rehearse the hurt.

See it as a new start.

Move on to something new.

Take time to improve yourself and keep it moving.

Not every venture is going to be successful. Not every date is going to lead to a second or third. Learn from your failures, don’t get angry or depressed. Life is hard, and rejection is likely, but your worth is not in the opinions of others. Whatever is meant to be, will be.

Surround yourself with positive people, plan positive experiences, make great memories and live knowing you are strong enough, good enough, smart enough and valuable enough!

 

Be Good, Be Gracious – Be A Blessing to Someone Today!

Shaunna

 

 

 

Your Time in the Cocoon

Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewal of your mind, that by testing you may discern what is the will of God, what is good and acceptable and perfect. Romans 12:2


Why Am I Going Through this? I’m A Good Person! Right now, you may be going through something that is undesirable, dark, lonely, and hopeless. “The struggle is real!” you keep professing to everyone every chance you get. You are in a cocoon. It’s not necessarily cocoon-02because you did something wrong.  You’re most likely in a place of growth. You were not meant to stay on one level in life. God wants to elevate you and keep you rising. The journey includes the struggle, allow yourself to be changed for better.

The frustrating thing, for humans anyway, is that cocoon seasons come when we least expect them.  Caterpillars don’t know their day or time. In their lives, like ours, presumably, all is well, and then things start changing. Their time of merely crawling is about to be over, but they don’t know it. The caterpillar is forced into a dark, lonely, hopeless place. Movement is restricted, options are removed, and comfort is something that used to be.  Sounds familiar, right?

Personally, I often feel as though I’m always going through something, and I watch those who don’t even believe in God or care about others, get favor and comforts ahead of me. However, I am reminded today, that I’m always going through, because I’m always growing, always improving, always advancing. That is the type of person I am; needing change, desiring more.  When we pray for elevation, what we see in our minds is instant elevation. We don’t consider the changes and growing pains required for the journey. Going to the next level will always be an uphill climb, so don’t listen to the people who don’t understand your growth and darkness. It is in the darkness of the cocoon that things shift and change into something greater.

How Long Will I Be in the Cocoon?  That depends on you. The average time for a caterpillar to be in a cocoon, is about 2 weeks. However, the length of time also depends on the species, (reference.com).  So, your time depends on the type of person you are. Are you patient, prayerful, hasty, ungrateful, faithful, vengeful?  God knows your timing; no man can define it for you. We emerge when we are fully prepared to do so. Butterflies are not able to exit the cocoon until their wings are strong enough to push through the confinement. When you are strong enough, you will breakthrough.

What Can I Do To Get Stronger? “If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness. 1 John 1:9. Confess your weakness and admit that you cannot get to the next level without going through the process.   Pray continually and worship regularly; focusing on God keeps you from focusing on your cocoon-01circumstances. Keep it moving; hiding from life is not an option on the path to growth. Be determined to make it; having an attitude of success will greatly influence your time in the
darkness. Remember that you are not experiencing something uncommon; it will be easy to fuss and cry and blame everyone else for your struggle, don’t give in, (1 Corinthians 10:13). BELIEVE!  If you don’t believe it will get better, it will not because all you will ever see is the struggle. Have faith (all you need is faith the size of a mustard seed – Matthew 17:20) that you will emerge better, stronger, and wiser. Believe in the good, and the good will come.

Is Your Struggle Beyond Your ABILITY to Pray?

iH3_QIEMPhilippians 4:6; “Don’t fret or worry. Instead of worrying, pray. Let petitions and praises shape your worries into prayers, letting God know your concerns. Before you know it, a sense of God’s wholeness, everything coming together for good, will come and settle you down. It’s wonderful what happens when Christ displaces worry at the center of your life.

We go through a lot of things in life; we meet a lot of challenges, and face many disappointments. We chase after the wrong things and find ourselves on the wrong side of progress…  Welcome to the human experience! There is not one among us who isn’t going to be angered, disappointed, cheated, wronged, overlooked or is going to do everything right.

So, you are going through somethings right now; I want you to answer the question I asked above, is your circumstance beyond your ability to pray?

I am not asking is it beyond your desire to pray. The truth is, nothing is beyond your ABILITY to pray unless you are not alive. If you can talk about your situation, or cry about it, or worry about it, you can pray about it.

God does really hear every prayer, and receives every praise. No matter what your life looks like right now do those two things, PRAY AND PRAISE. Even if your prayer is, “God, I don’t know how to pray,” he understands that. That’s where the Holy Spirit comes in and helps out.   When you are at your wits end, when you are burned out, bitter, tired of dead ends, when none of your words are right, the Holy Spirit has the right words, and the right answer- PRAY for help. When nothing about going forward seems worth it, PRAY. God will help you see value in your circumstance, if even to just draw YOU closer to him. God never wastes a struggle. Sometimes the solution to the problem we face, is the change God is trying to make in US, not someone or something else. (That revelation made me pause for a second too!)

There is nothing too hard for God, not even your situation. There is no problem too big for God, not even yours, but while you are sitting there trying to figure out how things went so wrong, or why you cant seem to create the change you want to see, remember that the change, the blessing, the breakthrough, the elevation and promotion come AFTER you pray. It is not your job to change people. It is not your business to hold all the answers. It will never be up to you to control all things. It IS up to you to PRAY if you want true victory in your situation. The God of Armies (Jehovah Sabaoth), the God who desires to fight for you, wants to hear from you today. He is a healer, he is a helper, he is a peacemaker, he is a provider, he is a protector, he is a way maker, he is a burden lifter, he is a yoke destroyer…Yes, there IS power in the name JESUS to break every chain!

Will you stop now and pray?

Don’t Kill My Confidence!

Look at the picture again…those words were scratched into a rock in the Grand Canyon. His trip proved to be impossible for him; the challenges of the journey wearied him. The way was rough, disappointing, and hopeless.

Don't let someone else's failure keep you from fulfilling destiny.
Don’t let someone else’s failure keep you from fulfilling destiny.

But he wasn’t the last to make the journey. Many have rafted down the Colorado River that runs through the Canyon far beyond the point of this inscription.

I want to encourage someone today to move past the negative.  There will always be a person, or a team of people who think you will never get past their unrealized dreams or their failures.  Don’t let the fact that someone else failed, never tried, or gave up keep you from pressing on. You were created for excellence, greatness and success! Let another’s lack of determination, faith and confidence inspire you to go farther and reach for more.

Are You On The Edge?

Joshua Chapter 3:14-16

“… So it was, when the people set out from their camp to cross over the Jordan, with the priests bearing the ark of the covenant before the people, 15 and as those who bore the ark came to the Jordan, and the feet of the priests who bore the ark dipped in the edge of the water (for the Jordan standing-at-the-edgeoverflows all its banks during the whole time of harvest), 16 that the waters which came down from upstream stood still, and rose in a heap very far away at Adam, the city that is beside Zaretan. So the waters that went down into the Sea of the Arabah, the Salt Sea, failed, and were cut off; and the people crossed over opposite Jericho…” (read full chapter online)

Where is 2014 leaving you? On the edge of despair, on the edge of anxiety? On the edge of wellness?   Perhaps you are wondering what will become of your life, your marriage, your health, your family, your status, etc once you cross over to 2015. Can you trust God enough to show up for you.? Can you trust him enough to turn the raging sea ahead you a dry road to cross on? Maybe you are wondering if God will finally deal with your persecutors. ‘

Consider the Israelites who were facing the Jordan river, they may have been wondering too, if their leader and their God would be with them when they got to the other side and would have to face Canaanites on the other side.  Just like the Israelites, this is your opportunity to activate your faith, and then move.  The promised land would not bet theirs if they stopped and refused to step over the edge of the river bank, or if they didn’t really believe in the one to whom they entrusted their lives.

Also, just like the Israelites, exercising your faith will allowed  you to see that God is indeed with you all the time, even in the messes and questionable times.

If you are facing a test right now that is leaving you  ON THE EDGE, move forward knowing that your situation  will not be the first case God fails. God’s promises to help you, heal you, care for you, provide for you, and promote you, are not conditional, and are not time sensitive. Reach out to him, his strength will uphold you. Draw nearer to him, and he will draw nearer to you (James 4:8).

Relying on Him will help you move from where you are to where He wants you to be on the edge of hope, promise, prosperity, and elevation.

Guarded

 

dusty-bibleProverbs 4: 11-23

“… Keep hold of instruction; do not let go; guard her, for she is your life…”

I’ve always been a guarded person, something that doesn’t appeal to everyone, but this text is very important. God’s instruction ought to be the very life we live and care for; a life that is guarded, and carefully lived. Today’s verses [that discuss instruction and wisdom], speak to my own desire to hold things (and people) that will help me do better, and live, well close to me. We are advised to hold instruction and guard it. Instruction is life, but it is not something that comes and lingers, it is something that we ought to pursue, keep close, and protect.

Where does instruction come from? The Word of God; the Bible. Learning is a process of taking in information repeatedly. Read your Bible daily, not just for 5 minutes, take your time, immerse yourself in the Word; get to know it, and apply it to your life.

Dust off your Bible and go to church. If you haven’t been to church in a while, find a good faith walking, Bible teaching church and get there every week. Church is where you will get the necessary instruction for a prosperous, victorious life.  Attend Bible study, become a member of a Cell Group, show up at Sunday School each week. Sunday school is NOT just for children, it is for everyone who desires spiritual growth. Guard, treasure, and appreciate instruction; commit it to memory so it becomes your life.

The devil Never Wrote a Book

bible clipartTo whom are you listening; God or the devil? If you choose not to listen to one you are listening to the other. Simple. When you sit and worry about how bad things are, how pporly someone has treated you, how horrible you are feeling, your focus is not on God. When those things dominate your thoughts, you find yourself in a rut of believing the many lies the devil plants in your mind. You will believe that there is no hope, that you are worthless, that no good happens to you, only everyone else. You will talk yourself into believing the promotion you were denied wasn’t worth it anyway. You will tell the world that that what everyone else has is far better than that many great things you have.

Those are lies, thoughts and ideas that you will never find in the word of God. God will definitely tell you the truth about who you are, and what your life is about, but he does not beat you into submission by making you feel bad about yourself. Why would you follow someone who only makes you feel bad about your life? God’s words are designed to be truthful, and helpful; they were written to give hope, and healing.

Think about the thoughts you have. Are the depressing, frustrating, or anger provoking? If they are then those are not from God; he never whispers in your ear that you are going to fail, that people hate you and what you look like, wear, and represent. No! The Bible says, “…in all these things we are more than conquerors through him that loved us.” Romans 8:37. God’s written word says “There is therefore now no condemnation to them which are in Christ Jesus, who walk not after the flesh, but after the Spirit,” Romans 8:1. This means that no matter what your circumstance, you win! You will be able to conquer whatever it is because of Christ.

You don’t have to listen to the negative things that are being said. Someone told me long ago, that what I think about, I bring about. If I choose to believe I am worthless, attitudes, ideas, and actions that are worthless will manifest themselves in my life. If I think I cannot accomplish anything good, I will not be motivated, encouraged, or compelled to do anything good. The written Word of God says, “For as he thinketh in his heart, so is he…” Proverbs 23:7. If you think about how depressed you are, you will only become more so. If you think someone to be a problem in your life, you will always see everything but the good in them. If you want to feel bad (or worse) keep talking about how bad you feel, or how angry you are. The more you tell people you want to forgive someone but just can’t, you never will.

Did you ever stop to think about how likely you are to believe a lie than the truth? We all do it, usually thinking we are being humble. We tell ourselves we don’t deserve compliments or nice things. We reject gifts saying, “I can’t accept that.” Why not? You deserve good in your life, good you didn’t work for. God blesses us through others so stop talking your way out of your blessings.

God wrote down his gifts, directions, and promises. That we know to be a truth in our world. If it is noteworthy and important, it is written. The devil never wrote a book filled with good things or created illustrations of overcoming adversity. He never wrote about choosing a way that brings abundant life. No one has ever said, let me go back to the devil’s diary and read about how worthless I am. You’ve never seen flyers that say, let’s get together every week to discuss our failures, heartbreaks, frustrations and find out how we can have more of that. The devil talks a lot, but he only talks and presents ideas of destruction, oppression, distraction, and confusion. Why would you want that to be the voice that rules you?

God wrote is word as a guide to redemption and salvation. The devil only runs his mouth, and as long as you keep listening, he will keep talking. Speak words of life into your situation, not words that will only make you feel bad. The written Word of God says, “We demolish arguments and every pretension that sets itself up against the knowledge of God, and we take captive every thought to make it obedient to Christ,” 2 Corinthians 10:5.
When you hear yourself say, this is too hard, this is never going to work, I’m not going to make it, I’m so mad, I’m never going to forgive that! Stop. Rethink your way into the next moment.

Boast in the Lord. I AM more than a conqueror, I CAN do this [Romans 8:37]. I HAVE NOT been given more than I can bear, this is not too hard for me,[1 Corinthians 10:13]. Christ has given me his peace, I WILL NOT be upset or angry [John 14:27]. I want God to forgive me, so I WILL choose to be forgiving, [Matthew 6:15].

To whom are you listening? You can stop the darkness of the devil with the word of God. Read your Bible daily. Get up earlier, read during break times, or buy Bible CDs for your commute. Make time for God and there will be no time to entertain the devil.

Be good, be careful, and be a blessing to someone today!

God bless you!

Shaunna