Friday, April 29, 2016

Characteristics of a Woman of God Part One: The Virtuous Woman

What makes a woman of God? Is it the way she dresses? Is she modest? What about the way she speaks? Does she speak words of truth, kindness, love, and encouragement? Or maybe it's her actions? Does she reach out to help others? Is she giving? Does she give to those in need or does she expect someone else to take care of them?

A true woman of God is a true worshipper of God. It shows through her words, her actions, and, yes, even the way she dresses. She is strong, faithful, submissive, modest, she knows her worth, and sticks to her truth. Thankfully we can learn to grow into such a character. God provides us with a perfect template for a true woman of God. He also gives us many biblical women figures that we can model after, but the main passages that God has told me are Proverbs 31:10-31 and Titus 2:3-5.

This will be a two-part post. Today's post is part one and it will focus on The Virtuous Woman (Proverbs 31). Part two (which will be posted next Tuesday!) will focus on The Woman Who Leads Other Women (Titus 2).

So lets go!

When reading Proverbs 31:10-31, twenty main traits of the virtuous woman stood out to me.

  1. She is valuable. (31:10) She is more worthy than rubies and diamonds. Just like such precious stones, they are just as beautiful as they are rare. They are treasures that one would really have to dig up and find. Just like diamonds are made under pressure, sometimes the most beautiful women are created by the toughest adversity. It shapes and strengthens them; they become unbreakable. They know their worth and where they come from.
  2. She is trustworthy. (31:11) She puts her husband's heart at ease. He trusts in her. He trusts in her abilities. He knows that he will never lack anything good in life because he knows the woman that God blessed him with. (Proverbs 18:22) Her friends and family trust her as well.
  3. She is good. (31:12) She is good to her husband, her children, and to everyone else, even to strangers. Most importantly, she is good to God (because by being good to others, you are being good to Him [Matthew 25:40]). This goodness she has inside of her never seems to wear off. It follows her all the days of her life no matter how ungodly this world gets because a virtuous woman stays rooted in God, who is good. She allows the goodnes of God to flow through her.
  4. She is hardworking. (31:13) The woman of virtue is no slacker. When she needs to, she seeks work and pursue it. She is a productive woman who works for others as if working for the Lord. She is not afraid of hard work. She handles responsibilities and gets things done.
  5. She is provisional. (31:14) It is mainly the husband's job to provide for the family. The virtuous woman, as the man's helper (Gen. 2:18-22), helps her husband to provide food for the house. She goes great lengths to find the best food she can and put it on the table.
  6. She is a homemaker. (31:15) Wow! "She also rises while it is yet night." The virtuous woman is highly dedicated to her work and loves a good, early start to her day. She wakes up a dawn, says a prayer--I'm sure--and begins with her hously duties. If you have your own business or if you work from home, this point can also apply. This just reminded me of my late grandmother's domesticity. Now my grandmama was one of the strongest women of God I've ever had a pleasure to know. She truly loved the Lord with all her heart! Every summer I would stay at her home in Virginia with my cousin. Every morning--and I mean every morning--she would rise at 5am, go into the kitchen and turn on her favorite gospel station on the radio. Sometimes her habits would wake me and my cousin right out of our sleep! She would then begin cooking breakfast while worshipping God and spending some well needed alone time with Him. Of course as I got older, I respected her routine more and more. It is also a woman's job to keep the house in good shape (in a practical sense) by doing tasks such as cleaning and cooking.
  7. She plans wisely. (31:16) The virtuous woman is a planner. She is considerate, conscientious, and thoughtful. She is self-controlled and is careful not to act on impulse. Surely she asks God to intervene in her decision making so she can stay on the righteous path that He has for her. "From her profits she plants a vineyard." She is rewarded for her wise choices.
  8. She is strong. (31:17) The virtuous woman is a confident soul who looks to God for strength when she is weak. She wears strength; she puts it on before she begins her day. "And she strengthens her arms." She embraces a good challenge and welcomes it as an opportunity to grow stronger and closer to God.
  9. She is content. (31:18) The virtuous woman looks around at her possesions and is content with what God has blessed her with. She looks at where she is in her life and is thankful for the present moment and for how far God has brought her. She does not covet others for what they have nor does she compare herself with other women or compete with her. She is at peace with herself and with her life even with the flaws because she serves a God who is flawless.
  10. She is selfless. (31:20) She is mindful of the poor. She is compassionate and filled with empathy and love. She has a huge heart for the needy and gives without even thinking twice about it. She is a reflection of God's heart, Whose eyes are always on the needy. She allows God to work through her so she can bless the poor and nurture them. She does not leave people helpless, but the God in her leads her to reach out.
  11. She sees the big picture. (31:21) Intuition. This wiman is sensitive to what God tells her and does her best to be prepared for whatever life throws her way.She is a visionary who works towards what God has destined for her. She is not afraid nor is she doubtful of the challenges ahead because she puts her trust in God. She knows that He will be there.
  12. She is creative. (31:22) She has a unique sense of style when it comes to dress. She is expressive. She embraces who she is. She is well put together and is modest with her clothing.
  13. She makes her husband look good. Her man is not ashamed of her at all. Her character seems to have quite an influence on him, his friends, and the church. Because of her popularity in the community, her husband is also well-known. He is very proud to call her his wife.
  14. She is gifted. (31:24) She uses the talents that she was given to bless others and she knows how to use them to serve God and others. She is a generous entrepreneur who is serious and dedicated to her business but also keeps God first in Her life above all else.
  15. She is optimistic. (31:25) She has a positive outlook on the future because God is already there. She has no reason to fear the unknown...but instead, she looks at the mysteries of tomorrow with joy.
  16. She is wise. (31:26) This woman of virtue speaks wisdom. Her primary source of wisdom is God; He is the Living Word. She also gains wisdom from experience, failures, and mistakes. She does not hold back anything the Holy Spirit is prompting her to say. She just opens her mouth and speaks words of encouragement and wisdom to those who encounter her. She lives and she learns.
  17. She edifies others. (31:26) The virtuous woman is always kind to others. She has a heart that is full of kindness that bleeds onto her words. She is a humble woman who lifts up others and not herself. She genuinely praises others and make them feel great. She encourages, uplifts, and inspires others.
  18. She is praised. (31:28) She is praised by her husband, by her children, by her friends, by other women, and anyone else involved in her life. She is praised for her character, her faith, her words, and her good works.
  19. She is rare. (21:29) It is very rare, indeed, when great virtue meets great beauty. She stands out like a rare diamond. She is a unique thinker and a unique leader.
  20. She is God-fearing. (31:30) This is one of my favorite verses in the Bible because it talks about how meaningful it is to have a relationship with God. It does not matter how attractive a person is or how charming, those qualities are empty if that person does not love or serve the Lord. Being God-fearing is the most vital trait of a woman of God. Not only is she favorable and beautiful but she has a relationship with the Lord, and that makes a woman stunning.
Of course the standard of a Virtuous Woman that God gives us is the perfect one and we may never reach this perfect standard. But the goal, though, is to get as close as we can possibly get while staying in touch with our uniqueness. In no way is this post telling you to be perfect, but in every way I am encouraging you to be the best woman of God that you can possibly be.

**Part 2 (Titus 2) will be posted next Tuesday!

Thursday, April 21, 2016

Sola Scriptura: Knowing God Through Scripture

Have you not known?
Have you not heard?
The everlasting God, the Lord,
The Creator of the ends of the earth,
Neither faints nor is weary.
His understanding is unsearchable."
                  ~Isaiah 40:28

Photo Credit: Pinterest

I find it amazing how much of God's character is revealed in this one verse. We get to know who He is mostly by means of prayer, meditation, and reading His word.

The verse above tells me me so much about His character. God has told me to segment this verse for a richer understanding.

"The everlasting God..."
I would like to begin with this line, although it is not the first one. This segment tells me that God is eternal. He was here at the dawn of creation and will be here even until the end of age! He is with us when we laugh, when we cry, when we travel, when we are lonely, when we are away from our family and friends, when we are afraid, when we fail, when we are vistorious, when we are rejected, when we succeed, when we are lost, and when we lead.

I could think of many, many, many, more. He is eternal. His love is eternal. His knowledge (for us, especially) is eternal. His presence is eternal. His word is eternal.

God ain't going nowhere. But we must keep Him close. We must keep Him first in our lives.

"...the Lord..."
The Lord of all. The Lord of all things living. The Lord of all the earth. The Lord of the universe. Lord of all Lords. Jesus is Lord. Lord above all.

"...The Creator of the ends of the earth..."
"Creator" is the key word. The Lord has created all things (Colossians 1:16-17). He created you. He created me. He created the earth, the planets, the sun, the stars! He created Heaven. He created nature, the weather, rainbows, and all creatures. He created language for all to speak. To speak to Him, to speak to one another, and to rebuke the enemy.

He created the ends of the earth. A God who created this entire world by speaking everything into existence has thought to create you! The same God who created mountains, waterfalls, sunrises, the moon, and stars created you and me! We are so small compared to the footprints of His glory. So small. Yet He lives in us. He wanted us! He called us! He saved us!

The fact that the same God who created it all with such majestic beauty is the same God who created us and lives in us should make us feel like so many things:

  • Loved
  • Beautiful
  • Strong
  • Courageous
  • Valued
  • Blessed
  • Accepted
  • Secure
Secure, because a God who created the world in only a week will never stop looking after you. He will always protect you. He will always provide. He will never forget about you, dearly beloved. He loves you like crazy!

"...neither faints nor is weary..."
How incredible is it that God, who created the entire universe out of nothing in 7 days, never gets tired? Unlike us mortal beings who get weary from a normal day (work, school, parenting, chores, cooking, etc.), God doesn't even pant after looking after billions of people!

We may faint and become weary with exhaustion--mentally, physically, emotionally, and even spiritually--but we serve an eternal, loving God who never does. Just like we feed off the energies of those around us, we must take our weary souls elsewhere, isolate ourselves, come near God and feed off of His revitalizing presence. It is He who can refill us. He is our source of strength. We lay our burdens on Him and He will lift our souls. Rest in Him and He will renew your strength. 

"...His understanding is unserchable..."
The knowledge of God is so vast, so deep, so lofty that we cannot comprehend it with our mortal minds. His love for us is the same way. It runs so deep and so wide that we cannot begin to make sense out of it. All we can to is praise Him for this gorgeous love and let it consume us.

No one can fully fathom His ways, how He works. We may not always know why God does what He does or how He does it, but that is one of the many things that makes Him so wonderful; He fills us with wonder, He keeps us wondering. Because we are not meant to fully understand God's ways, we call some some things "miracles," because miracles cannot be explained. They just are. Sometimes the most beautiful things in life cannot be instead, we can just marvel at them.

God is marvelous...

Wednesday, April 20, 2016

Wake Up Ladies: Dorcas, the Generous Disciple

Scripture Passage: Acts 9:36-42

"Dorcas" = gazelle, a small, graceful, and swift antelope with glowing eyes.

Many individuals turn out to live up to the meaning of their names and Dorcas from the book of Acts is no exception. Dorcas (or "Tabitha," as it is in Hebrew) was a dedicated disciple of God who was very generous, charitable, and faithful with her work. She seemed to be quite graceful, much like a gazelle. Very selfless with a huge heart for God and others, she, being highly gifted with her hands, made tunics and clothing to provide for those who desperately needed it. Dorcas was a very modest and simple woman of God who allowed His goodness to flow from His heart through her hands (I love how many endless, unique ways God uses His people!). She was not afraid to use her God-given abilities to bless others--especially those in need--and, therefore, give back to the Lord (Matt. 25:40).

Also important to note: God's glory is revealed in Dorcas' story. I'm not talking about what God did through her talent, but what happened after Dorcas died. The news reached Peter and he went and found her body in the upper chamber. When Peter saw Dorcas' body, he knelt down and prayed for her to wake up. What happens next is incredible. God puts life back into Dorcas' body and she wakes right up! When the tidings of this miraculous moment spread throughout Joppa (the town in which they lived), the people were amazed and became believers of God. Just witnessing miracles (unexplained occurences) will convince an unbeliever that there is a God. One thing this passage tells me is that the glory of God can be seen in anybody's life and His incredible glory is enough to birth believers all around.

What Can We Learn From Dorcas? 

  • Being a disciple, she was a true follower and worshipper of God
  • Humble (crafting clothing for others with the work of one's hands is a humble task)
  • Served God with her talents; she put her heart in everything she did (Col. 3:23)
  • Selfless 
  • Grounded (never forgot where she came from and why God put her on the earth)

Wednesday, April 13, 2016

Sola Scriptura: Knowing God's Power

Credit: Christian Media Ritchie

"For I will at this time send all my plagues upon thine heart, and upon thy servants, and upon thy people; that thou mayest know that there is none like me in all the earth."
~Exodus 9:14

While reading these passages of Moses, Pharaoh, and the plagues of Egypt, I always wondered, "why did God express His anger on Pharaoh and his people if He knew that He was going to harden Pharaohs heart? What is God doing here?"

I finally got my answer while reading chapter 8 of Exodus. God spoke to me subliminally. God wanted to show Pharaoh His power (Ex. 9:14). God also wanted to show Pharaoh that He is the one and only God and that there is none like Him (perhaps because Pharaoh did not know God [Ex. 5:2]  nor was he acquainted with His mighty power).

But Pharaoh was stubborn. In fact the more stubborn he was, the mightier God's power was in Egypt.

The ten plagues of Egypt. This was all part of God's plan for Moses (his calling to lead the children of Israel out of Egypt), for Pharaoh (to witness God and His power), for the Egyptians (the plagues being God's judgement), and for the Israelites (for deliverance out of the hands of Pharaoh). At the beginning of Exodus, Pharaoh was overwhelmed with the massive amounts of Israelites in Egypt; they were too many (Ex. 1:7-14) so he made them toil as slaves. But the more they were burdened, the more they multiplied. The Israelites then cried and groaned because of their heavy burdens. God heard them and He had a plan for them to be delivered.

God then wanted to use Moses to execute that plan--to bring the Israelites out of the land into the wilderness so they can serve Him. But God knew Pharaoh's heart and that he needed to be humbled and more believing. Pharaoh's people suffered terribly because of his stubbornness. He had to see over and over again that God and His power are real and it was only because he refused to let God's people go. The more Pharaoh refused God's command, the more God unleashed His wondrous power. But Pharaoh finally released the Israelites after the tenth plague, only to change his mind about it later.

God's power is also manifested in Moses who was believed to have had a stuttering problem (Ex. 6:12). He was not very eloquent and very fearful, but God still chose to use him anyway and He gave moses the words to say to Pharaoh. God also gave Moses power in his rod to show Pharaoh God's mighty power. This shows that when we are at our weakest, God is at His strongest (2 Corinth. 12:9); I cannot stress this enough! He used someone like Moses to lead the Israelites out of Egypt (by means of splitting the Red Sea in half and ultimately drowning Pharaoh and the Egyptians) into the land flowing with milk and honey. A new law--The Ten Commandments--was then established by God.

It is amazing how God works. He can use anything for His glory. Anything! In Exodus, He used flies, locusts, and frogs under His command. He used a bush to speak to and call Moses. God used the forces of nature (hail, fire, waters to blood, and darkness) to show His limitless power. I also love how God kept Moses, Aaron, and the Israelites untouched by all of these plagues (because they were God's people).

A few more insights I pulled from this:

  • There is nothing too big or too small that God cannot handle or use for His glory. He never ceases to amaze us..
  • God used Pharaoh's situation as an opportunity to show everyone who He is (and also to expose Pharaoh of his ignorance and stubbornness).
  • God has wonderful reasons behind everything He does. Anything we go through is only for our good and for His glory to be seen.
  • God uses ugly circumstances for His stunning beauty to pierce through the darkness of the situation.

Tuesday, April 5, 2016

Wake Up Ladies: Anna, The Prophetess

Hello everyone and welcome to my newest blog series, Wake Up Ladies: A Biblical Women Blog Series. Because my blog is all about teaching women of God and empowering and encouraging them with devotions, teachings, and personal stories, God has told me to focus more on the women in the Bible in a way that we, as women of God, can learn from and be influenced by them. The mission of this series is to teach about the women in the Bible and encourage today's women of God to live in such a way. I believe one of the most important things in learning to be a true woman of God is learning from the best (and yes, even the worst) women in the Bible. I will be posting a new episode bi-weekly on Wednesday mornings. I'm so excited about this and I pray that you will be blessed, encouraged, and positively influenced by the studies of these women!

Here is my first official episode of the series: "Prophetess Anna."

Main Passage: Luke 2:22-38 (v. 36-38, especially)

'Anna' means: favor, grace

Anna, a strong and faithful woman of God, was a prophetess who was believed to have known the Messiah had arrived right when Simeon presented Him in the temple (v. 27-32). She often talked about Jesus and His coming to those who looked for Salvation in Jerusalem.

Photo Credit:

84 years of age and widowed after 7 years of marriage, Anna was an extraordinary woman of God who led by example. She was heavily connected to and committed to her service in church and the church itself. She was so devoted to God, was a woman through whom God spoke, and served Him through prayer and fasting day and night.

That eventful moment when baby Jesus was presented in the temple, Anna gave thanks to God right then, at that moment, because she knew that the Son of God had come. She knew who he was. Because of this, she wanted to tell others about Jesus (witnessing) and His saving power.

Anna was a very selfless woman who valued God and others above herself. She served God with all her heart and served others with love and faithfulness.

What Can We Learn From Anna?

  • Committment and dedication to God, especially, and her service to others
  • Her love for the church and faithfulness to her work (v. 37, "she never departed from the church")
  • Serves God with prayer day and night and with fasting
  • Was not afraid to speak to others about Christ; she warned them of His coming. She wanted lost souls to know Him before His glorious return
  • She thought about others and put God and others before herself
Although every woman of God may not be a prophetess, we can still emulate Anna by her strength as a woman, a teacher, by her faithfulness to God, the church, and others, especially lost souls.

Thursday, March 31, 2016


I'm not perfect. I'm so far from it. I even remember pouring me tears out a couple of months back because I yearn for perfection so badly sometimes.

People. Many people describe me or perceive me as "perfect." But why? Perhaps it is because I'm quiet, caring, sweet, "religious," intelligent, sensitive, and well-behaved. I'm also in college succeeding academically, lead a Bible study there, and am currently writing my first book.

That seems perfect, does it not? they say.

But perfection is boring.

Lately I've had an experience that greatly humbled me and reminded me of the grace of God. This was just last week to be exact.

Last week was a little off. I was a little off. It was an emotional roller coaster for me. I was not feeling my best physically or emotionally. I also caught myself more focused on my flesh and not enough on the Spirit. Because of this, my work was affected.

Basically I've been battling the enemy. I let him seep into my head and feed me lies.

Last Wednesday was my breaking point. Up until that day, the devil has been attacking my mind by filling it with all of these negative self thoughts: "you're not good enough;" "you're not attractive enough;" "you're not fit enough for your calling;" "you'll never be that successful."

I was dealing with a sense of inferiority. I was feeling insecure about God's calling on my life. I was doubting the effect that my blog, my writing, and my teaching can have on my readers and followers. I was starting to feel the heat of fierce competitors on social media (other bloggers).

To top it all off, during that week I had posted something on social media (an exerpt from my previous blog post) that was dangerously misinterpreted. I was told that my post "gave more props to the enemy than the Almighty Father." That hurt. Really bad. So I graciously explain my post saying that I never meant for it to be read that way. I forgave the person who bashed me, but I knew it was the work of the enemy. 

This really made me begin to question my gift of encouragement. "Maybe I'm not really that good..." But I try brushing and praying it off before bed. I ask God to forgive me. He knows that I was not coming from a bad place. Not at all.

The next day...

I was preparing to draft my new devotional post. I posted a sneak peak of it on my Instagram account. But then something else happens.

I get told by someone else that my post was showing unbiblical points! I was so suprised and disappointed in myself. So I shamefully delete my post and cancel my blog post for that week.

The fact that I was told that i was making unbiblical points was not a work of the enemy. It was a loving act of correction. But the thoughts that followed after that correction were of the enemy. Again...

Everything was starting to build up. Negative thoughts cloud my mind, tears pour like rain from my eyes.

"I am not gifted."
"I dont' have what it takes to spiritually teach."
"Why did God even choose me?"
"I'm an idiot."
"Why am I even doing this?"
"I'm a nobody."

These thoughts...from the lawless one.

I cry and cry for almost two hours. Trying and failing to cry out to God, to bring myself to pray.

I'm feeling down and purposeless for the rest of the day.

Until that night. God beckons me outside a little after midnight. He shows Himself to me with the full, large, white moon peeping through my bedroom window (Lord knows I love the moon). When winding down at the end of the day, I normally sit in my bedroom with all of the lights turned off in complete silence (or listening to relaxing or gospel music) drinking some decaffinated tea because it soothes and relaxes my mind and body. But that night, God led me to a different venue.

Photo Credit: Pinterest

So I grab my tea and sit out on the front porch right under the moon. It is so beautiful. God is so beautiful.

I take in the moment of beauty and tranquility. The cool breeze caressing my pained spirit, the quietness stilling my soul, the moonlight gently beaming on me as an expression of God's love.

I close my eyes, take a deep breath, and send up a silent prayer. It went something like this:

"Heavenly Father,
Please forgive me, Lord, of all of my sins. Reveal Yourself to me, Father. Be my joy, my peace, my strenght. May You release me of my burdens and these negative thoughts and replace them with Yours, Jesus. May I wake up tomorrow morning with a renewed heart, spirit, and mind. I love you so much, Lord. I pray this in Jesus name, 

I also thanked and praised Him. I felt Him so present at that moment. My spirit already lifted.

I sip the rest of my sleepy tea and go back inside and slip into bed. I fall asleep with Jesus on my mind.

Remarkably, I wake up the next day with such a refreshed spirit. Feeling healed. Feeling loved. The negative thoughts of the enemy...GONE. The Lord faught the enemy while I was peacefully asleep! The whole day was a blessing. Even the day before was a blessing. Being humiliated can hurt like crazy, but it is just a loving reminder of God's grace.

Even I fall victim of the enemy's attacks, we all do. I doubt myself sometimes. I tend to get nervous and anxious very easily. I have days when I don't feel like praying. I have days when don't feel like being nice to people at all. I have days when I don't feel beautiful. I have days when I am more led by my flesh than by the Holy Spirit. I am very imperfect. I am human.

But God loves me like crazy regardless!!

His strength is so beautifully manifested in our weakness.

He shows us His best when we are hurting and burdened. He loves the broken (Psalm 34:18).

It is all about having faith.

Be thankful at this time! From the words of my aunt Tracy (a prophetess who I spoke to in the midst of this): praise God because the enemy likes to attack those who are the closest to God and who are doing great things for His kingdom. If the devil ain't on your back trying to break you apart from God, you're already right where he wants you to be! And what a dangerous place to be in!

Stay faithful,
Stay obedient,
Stay close,
To God,
And He
Will keep

James 4:8--"Draw near to God and He will draw near to you. Cleanse your hands, you sinners; and purify your hearts, you double-minded."

2 Corinthians 12:9-10--"And He said to me, "My grace is sufficient for you, for my strength is made perfect in weakness." Therefore most gladly I will rather boast in my infirmities, that the power of Christ may rest upon me. Therefore I take pleasure in infirmities, in reproaches, in needs, in persecutions, in distresses, for Christ's sake. For when I am weak, then I am strong."

Psalm 34:18--"The Lord is near those who have a broken heart, and saves such as have a contrite spirit."

Vicki Yohe--"God Loves the Broken" (I encourage you to listen to this beautiful song!).

Friday, March 18, 2016

No More Shy Christians!

"Greater is He that is in me than he that is in the world." ~1 John 4:4

Hello everyone and welcome! Today I will be talking about shyness in Christianity, how it can be dangerous while living for God, my personal experience with it and how God has delivered me, and how to be delivered from that bondage of fear.
Credit: Getty Images. I deeply apologize for the watermark
God calls us all to live boldly and proudly for Him by living out His will and His desires for our lives. Boldly, meaning we cannot let fear rule our lives. Think about this: if we are constantly bonded by fear, how will God be seen, felt, and experienced in this world? What if all Christians were like that? Stiff and frozen with fear every time they had to witness to others, evangelize, pray publicly, show (uncommon) kindness to strangers, or even talk to God? If that were the case, then this world would be in a far worse state than it is already because there would be no display of God's love or character. That is why God gives us gifts, a will, and a purpose for our lives, to bleed His beauty through this cold world and through other people.

I touch on fear so heavily because shyness is stemmed from fear. Shyness is a fear of social rejection. I know a lot about shyness because I used to be incredibly shy when I was growing up. I'm only a little shy now, but, thankfully, not nearly as shy as I used to be. Later on in this post, though, I will express how God helped me overcome my fears.

One may probably think, "so, if shyness is such a bad thing to have as a child of God, then why is it that He creates shy people?" Here is the answer: God does not create shy people, but it is the world that breeds shyness. God does create quiet people--like myself--but not shy people. Shyness is a fear that is learned from worldly experience. This fear comes from the enemy and he uses this fear to trap our mind, our willpower, and, ultimately, our actions. Satan doesn't want God's love to be shown in this world. That's why he can make the strongest children of God into the shyest ones just so they don't make an impact! But that does not case. It should not be the case. And if God has anything to do with it, it will not be the case.

I want to say this to you now: the only force stronger than fear is love (1 John 4:18--"There is no fear in love. But perfect love drives out fear, because fear has to do with punishment. The one who 
fears is not made perfect in love"). Know that shyness is a learned fear and anything that is learned can be unlearned. And yes! Shyness can be unlearned.

So what are some Godly ways to combat shyness? Here are some ways that I believe will definitely help (personally, I have used these tips!): 

  • It is always best to begin with God and His word. Try looking for Bible verses that speak on fear and anxiety and courage. Here are some wonderful scriptures to start with:
    • Isaiah 41:10--"Fear not, for I am with you; be not dismayed, for I am your God; I will strengthen you, I will help you, I will uphold you with my righteous right hand."
    • Philippians 4:6-7--"Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be make known to God. And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and minds in Christ Jesus."
    • Philippians 4:13--"I can do all things through Christ who gives me strength."
    • 2 Timothy 1:7--"For God gave us a spirit not of fear but of power and love and self-control."
    • 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."
    • Proverbs 28:1--"The wicked flee when no one pursues, but the righteous are bold as a lion."
    • 1 Peter 3:13-14--"Now who is there to harm you if you are zealous for for what is good? But even if you should suffer for righteousness' sake, you will be blessed. Have no fear of them, nor be troubled."

If it helps at all--and this is something I do--write scripture on PostIt notes and put them on your wall or on your nightstand. That way the verses can be stored in your heart. If you feel comfortable, speak those verses over yourself out loud or speak them in your head daily. This serves as a positive affirmation and will, therefore,  help you to believe the power of God's word and will ultimately help you to live out His word. (Proverbs 23:7--"For as he thinketh in his heart, so is he.")

  • Pray and ask God to deliver you from your shyness and to give you a spirit of boldness.
    • Warning: the answer to this prayer may be the last thing you want, but exactly what you need. 
Expect God to put you in some uncomfortable places to grow you (check out my Instagram post on "getting uncomfortable" here). He may put you in situations where you will have to do something daunting such as public speaking, speaking to strangers, or any new life experience you may not be comfortable with. Now before you have a near anxiety attack and run for cover, remember that God is only wanting to strengthen and mold you into His image. Just trust Him and know that nothing but the best can come out of these experiences. A diamond cannot be made without pressure.

I've experience this personally over the past year when I asked God to give me a spirit of boldnes so I can be a better witness for Him. Over time--well, last year--He has placed certain people in my life and put me in situations where I had to be a light for Him. For example, I told the last roomate that I had (who stopped going to church for a while) about how God has moved in my life up to that point. I even invited her to come to our weekly bible studies that my group and I did on campus (all this actually happened on the day we first met!)! Before I moved out, she told me that I really had an influence on her and--not that I'm bragging, I promise--that I was her favorite roomate (and she was definitely mine).

Another experience when I had to float outside of my comfort bubble was my first time leading bible study that same year. (I tell my in-depth story about this in one of my previous posts, "Face-to-Face: Use Your Voice.") Long story short, I anxiously overcome my public speaking challenges and speak and teach for God's glory! God was putting me in situations where I had to be bold for Him. Intimidating? Very! Impossible? No. But rewarding? Incredibly! There is nothing like making God proud.

  • The last tip is to take initiative! Now, I know this sounds absolutely terrifying to shy people (hey, it frightens me just writing it!), but it is worth the trouble. Sometimes  we have to be the ones to step forward in faith, to make that first move. This will be the toughest step, so brace yourself! Make that phone call, start that conversation, apply for that job, register for that class, speak up during that class discussion! Make sure to start off with the smaller challenges that way you will be able to take on the bigger challenges. We have to want to be bold for Christ because desire minimizes fear. God wants us to take a leap of faith.
I recently had a similar experience with taking initiative. Just a few weeks ago, I hade to make several phone calls (one of the most nervewrecking things to do as an introvert). I was on a job hunt. I love work and productivity and helping others, so having a job was something I really wanted. After weeks of not hearing back from any of the companies that I applied to, my sister advised me to call in and check on my application statuses. I internally groaned at at the thought of it of it but I remebered how badly I wanted--and needed--a job. So...I made the decision to call those places that I applied to.

As much as I dreaded doing so, I couldn't be happier now because I got scheduled for an interview (yikes!) and will be working at David's Bridal next week! Praise God!

So there you have it! The three tips that I suggested above will be great helpers in tackling shyness and the enemy for putting that fear in you.

One final thing I want to add before I finish: does God love shy people? Yes! But what He doesn't love is how we let our shyness hinder us from doing what is right in His sight. We let the enemy win by letting our fear take over. Ask God to expose you of what makes you shy. What scares you the most? He will help you to comfront that fear and conquer it.

Think about this: what if Jesus was shy? What if He let shyness overtake Him? It's a hounting thing to think about isn't it? Thanfully, though, Jesus was not that way. He was driven by the intense love He feels for His Father and the intense love He feels for us. He was not phased by fear. Neither shoudl we be phased by fear. It is human to experience fear, but it is nothing but Satan trying to keep us back from being who God called us to be. He des this because he is intimidated by the God in us. We are God's children! We must show the enemy why we intimidate him.

I pray that you, my lovely readers, will take these words and lock them in your hearts and be the best witness, teacher, artist, singer, and the best child of God that you are destined to be! We all have something beautiful, rare, unique, and extraordinary to offer to the world. No one can do it better than you can. So take off that obscure veil of shy and see your life for what God created it to be.

Love you all,


Wednesday, March 9, 2016

15 Ways to Saturate Your Daily Life with Prayer

15 Ways to Saturate Your Daily Life with Prayer

Photo Credit: Carpenteria

“Pray without ceasing…” ~1 Thessalonians 5:17 

Greetings! This past weekend, God has told me to publish a post about how to get more prayer into our lives. So as I’m sitting under a hooded dryer deep conditioning my hair, I was led by the Holy Spirit to go on and draft out these prayer tips. I grabbed my composition journal and a pen and said a prayer for the Lord to give me prayer helpers to write down and share. Immediately, God took my pen and began writing for me.

Prayer is a strong necessity for a healthy relationship with God. Prayer is communicating with our Creator, the Lover of our souls, our Savior. Think if it, rather, as seed and a flower. If that flower has no seed, how is it expected to grow and flourish? In the same way, how do we expect our relationship with God to grow and blossom without prayer? What is a relationship without communication? Below, I have listed 16 ways to increase and strengthen your prayer life. I pray that you will find these helpful!

1.     Pray in the morning. This is the perfect time to thank God for giving you a new day. This is the perfect time to lift Him up and glorify Him for who He is and for giving you breath and another chance at life. Pray and ask God for His presence and guidance throughout your day. Pray for wisdom, strength, and courage to face any challenges that day brings. Ask God to help you live that day in a way that is pleasing to Him. Ask Him to use you for His glory to touch someone’s life and to help someone in need (part of my morning prayer!). Ask Him for daily bread. Anything you have to say to the Lord, say it. He wants to hear from you in the morning! I personally love to talk with God before I speak with anyone else in the morning. He comes first!
2.     Ask God to help you plan your day. This is a golden tip snatched from a devotional by Proverbs 31 Ministries. If you’re the type of person who likes to make “to do” lists—very much like me—this is a great time to send up a prayer. As you are planning out your day (or your week), ask God what goals He has for you. You can just ask, “Lord, what are your plans for me today? What do you want for me to accomplish?”  He will reveal His plans to you. Just this past Sunday, I was composing my “to do” list for this week. Right before I even wrote anything down, I prayed and asked God what goals He had for me this week. Moments later after clearing my mind, I began writing down tasks! After your list is done, it helps to ask God to help you accomplish those tasks. Ask Him for the strength and the time to complete them.
3.     Use your smart phone. Being that we live in such a technological advanced society, this tips—in my opinion—is one of the smartest (no pun intended for ‘smart’ phone). I know how accustomed we have grown to having our eyes and our hands glued to our mobile devices; why not take advantage of their convenience? I was advised by a close friend of mine to set daily prayer reminders on my iPhone. I thought that was a grand idea. Right now I have four reminders telling me to pray for others, be thankful, and to repent. They always remind me to pray when I get too distracted. Prayer apps also work wonderfully! Especially if you prefer to write your prayers. Try Prayer Notes, Echo Prayer, Prayer Prompter, just to name a few. They also allow you to set prayer reminders. I believe that this tip is ideal for those with busy or fast-paced lifestyles. I hear people say all the time that they are too busy to pray. If you are one of those people, I am here to tell you that there is no such thing. Our prayers don’t always have to be as long as, say, Psalm 119! In fact, God is pleased even with the shortest prayers (as long as they are heartfelt)!
One of my prayer reminders. Super convenient! Photo Credit: ME!

4.     Try to pray when you complain. This is very difficult to do—I have a tough time with it myself—but it is not impossible. There is good in every situation; we just need to ask God to see certain things the way He would want us to. For instance if we complain about having to wake up early every day for work or for class, we could choose to moan about it or we could turn it around and be thankful that we have a job or have an opportunity to learn and better ourselves. So whenever you catch yourself complaining, try and ask God for forgiveness and ask Him to reveal the blessing in the situation.
Photo Credit:

5.     Pray while reading the Bible. I do this every day. At times the Bible can be difficult to understand (especially for beginners). Before diving into God’s word, thank Him for this time with Him. Invite Him to be a part of your study time and pray for wisdom and understanding. Ask Him for Godly insight and to help you meditate on His word.
6.     Pray whenever you are alone or have a minute to yourself. Driving alone? In a waiting room? In a shopping line? Take those moments to pray. Pray about anything. These are great moments to thank God for being alive and getting you through your day. Whatever is on your heart at these moments, share it with Him.
7.     Pray for others. This is one of the greatest expressions of love as a child of God. Pray for those far and near. Pray for loved ones and strangers. Pray for any victims you’ve seen on the news. Pray for your coworkers and boss. Pray for your teachers. Pray for the sick and homeless. Pray for those who don’t know God. (1 Timothy 2:1-4)
8.     Pray whenever you have difficult decisions. God is our source of wisdom. Whenever we face even the smallest decisions, we should come to Him. No decision is too big or too small for God to handle. Ask Him to lead you to the right choice that will keep you on His righteous path. (Proverbs 3:5-6)
9.     Pray when you are happy. Gratitude, gratitude, gratitude! One big mistake that people make, many Christians even, is talking to God only during times of trouble or sorrow. God is to be communicated with and exalted at all times. Of course, there is nothing wrong with praying during times of distress, but that should not be the only time when you pray. Pray when things are going well! In the morning when you get dressed and cook breakfast, thank Him for providing you with clothes to wear and food to eat. Thank Him for the little things. Pray for God to keep showing Himself to you and in the lives of those around you. Say, “thank you Lord” when you are having a good day (and on a bad one too!). Praise Him for His goodness, His faithfulness, His love and His favor.
Credit: Facebook
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10.                        Find a good time to write to God. If you are a morning person, or an evening person, or whatever kind of person you are, use that perfect time to sit down in a private place and write letters to God. This is one of my favorite methods whenever I cannot bring myself to say my prayers—sometimes writing is just easier for me. Writing helps get thoughts together, so keeping a prayer journal (either digital or physical) is a beautiful idea. You can record prayers and how God has responded to your prayers. Having a prayer journal also helps to keep track of answered prayers and is good for when you want to look back on prayers and see how God has intervened!
11.                        Pray when you are afraid or doubting. The antidote to worry is prayer! Lord knows I can be a worry wart and thankfully during those times of fretting, He has taught me to turn to Him at the first sight of worry. Please don’t make prayer your last resort, but your first response. Personally, I experience a sense of peace and hope over my spirit when I give my worries and fears to God. Thankfully, I don’t find myself worrying too much these days. Glory to God!!
12.                        Wake up early; arrive to work or to class early. Before anyone else wakes up or arrives to work or to class, make time for God. He is worth it! But make sure you are well rested because the Lord would really want for you to care for the body that He has given you. I recently started waking up as early as 8am to have time with God by means of prayer, worship, Bible study and a podcast sermon (that is, if it’s Sunday and we could not make it to church) and coffee (I gotta have my coffee!). It’s the perfect way to begin your day.
13.                        Be more dependent on God.  What inspired this one was the story of “The Fall” (Genesis 3) spoken about in the YouVersion reading plan, Christianity is Not What You Think. In short, the reason why God placed the Tree of Knowledge in the Garden of Eden and forbade Adam and Eve from eating of it was because God wanted intimacy. He wanted them to completely rely on God for knowledge, wisdom, and decision making. He never wanted man to have such lofty wisdom because if they did, they wouldn’t need God. That’s what God desires today. He wants us to be intimate with Him and come to Him first for guidance and comfort before we go to anyone else. Dependency on God leads to much prayer. For example, I prayed before writing this blog post, during writing, and I’m pretty sure I’m going to pray even after I publish it! Communication with God is golden. There is no such thing as too much prayer!! (John 15:5)
14.                        Repent. Repent whenever you feel convicted. Repent after you know you’ve committed a sin. I personally repent up to five times a day! Serisously! I love being clean in God’s eyes and He knows I’m a neat freak! It is best to repent every night before bed. Sometimes I repent when I wake up. (1 John 1:9)
15.                        Pray before bed. Praise God for getting you through another day. Thank Him for the challenges He has helped you overcome. Again—and I cannot stress this enough—repent of your sins; ask for forgiveness. Give Him any burdens that your day has brought. Ask Him for a well-rested night and to reveal Himself in your dreams. Ask for His protection while you and your loved ones sleep.
Well, there you have it! Below I have listed some references and resources that could definitely aid your prayer life.

**I love reading plans! If you are interested in Bible reading plans on how to strengthen your prayer life, here are the ones I found very helpful:
·        Talking With God In Prayer
·        Pray
·        30 Day Prayer Challenge
**Also you can observe how people in the Bible pray, such as:
·        Jesus
·   Rebekah
·        Job
·        David

**Feel free to follow my blogging account on IG: @livingabeautifullife_blog and my personal account (I recently created a new one) at @brittmichelle___

**Also if you have any questions, prayer requests, or anything you want to talk about feel free to either email me at or you can comment below!