Categories
Encouragement for Women Fight the Good Fight Run Your Race Seasons

I Have Loved You

Happy Thursday, Loves! Today’s post will focus on the phrase, “It is what is.” I have found myself using this phrase quite a bit the last few months trying to explain certain things out of my control and then one day I saw something on social media that said “It is what it is util it isn’t.” That caught my attention. I Googled the phrase It is what it is and found this article: https://www.inc.com/peter-economy/the-stupidity-of-it-is-what-it-is.html

It is an awesome read about the phrase and why he feels it is stupid. He quotes Army officer Major Andrew Steadman in the article, ‘”Here’s the problem with It is what it is. It abdicates responsibility, shuts down creative problem solving, and concedes defeat. A leader who uses the expression is a leader who faced a challenge, failed to overcome it, and explained away the episode as an inevitable, unavoidable force of circumstances. Replace It is what it is with “This resulted because I failed to do __________” and you get an entirely different discussion.’

I admit I’ve used that phrase quite often lately, and it just didn’t sit well with me. I’ve shared in previous blogs that I am in therapy for my mental health, and I am going to share a little bit more about that right now and give you the reason for this blog title today. My therapist suggested EMDR therapy due to certain triggers and responses in my life. I had heard of this therapy before and knew a little bit about it so it didn’t surprise me when she brought it up. I just didn’t know if I was ready (here’s a link with information if you want to read a little bit about the therapy https://www.emdr.com/what-is-emdr/ ). I knew it was a call to action in every way for my mental, physical and spiritual health, a call to change. God was making a way for great change in my life and now it was up to me to either be courageous and brave or stay stuck.

I chose to be brave. I had my first EMDR session yesterday and in the interest of word count and time and the sensitivity of the subject I will leave out all the intimate details, but I will say there was a moment during the appointment where this verse came up in my mind as if God was whispering it over my entire soul,

“The Lord has appeared of old to me, saying:“Yes, I have loved you with an everlasting love; Therefore with lovingkindness I have drawn you.” Jeremiah 31:3

I am still basking in that reality that God has had His hand on my life always, during every good and bad thing I have experienced. He was there. He is here. He sees it all. I am on the road to healing during this time of therapy, and I needed to know that He is with me. I am writing this to tell you today that it doesn’t have to be It is what it is. You can take His hand, trust Him and let Him walk you through to the other side of dealing with whatever needs to be faced. How it has worked and how it looks in my life is not turning my back on the appointments even when my heart is pounding out of my chest and my throat is closing up at the very thought of whatever is on the other side of healing.

My prayer for all of us is that we don’t settle for the status quo in our lives. We can proclaim a victorious, “It was what it was, but now it is not” over whatever change God wants us to embrace. The only reason why I can even write these words today is because of that verse reminding me that He has loved me with an everlasting love.

Dear reader, know this truth today, He has loved you with an everlasting love. He has called you. You are His and because of this truth our lives don’t need to be It is what it is any longer. He has given us the power to live on the other side of whatever haunts us. He has given us hope.

With all my heart,

Sonia

P.S. If you have any song suggestions, please send them my way! I love to listen while I write 🙂


Categories
Encouragement for Women Seasons

The “DIS” and the “UN”

Nothing like a fresh color to fight discouragement too 🙂

Let me start out this Friday post with words that start with “DIS”: discourage, disorder distract, disappear, dissimilar, disadvantage. Now let’s look at words that start with “UN”: unwell, unhappy, ungrateful, untrained, unwilling.

Looks like these aren’t great prefixes: ‘dis’ means apart and ‘un’ means not! Ok, why the word lesson for us today, right?! I think it’s because I’ve had the word “discouraged” rolling around in my head since yesterday. Don’t get me wrong, I’m grateful over many, many things, but I’ve been battling discouragement. Maybe you have too!

I’ll just be honest here and list a few of my discouragements (in no particular order): estranged relationships, finances, weight, school, work, hormones, writing (I love it, I’m doing it right now!! It can be discouraging to find time not to mention the feeling that you’re just not a good enough writer & it’s just a waste to put all the time and effort in). Do you see it, the theme, the “dis/un” life going on right now!

So what do we do with this when there is SO much to be thankful for? How do we battle the world and our own minds that tries to keep our focus on the negative?

We can turn to His Word, I promise, we can. I just did to help me write this for my heart and yours and found this verse when I typed in HOPE:

Psalm 61:2-5 The Message

God, listen to me shout,
bend an ear to my prayer.
When I’m far from anywhere,
down to my last gasp,
I call out, “Guide me up High Rock Mountain!” You’ve always given me breathing room, a place to get away from it all,
A lifetime pass to your safe-house, an open invitation as your guest. You’ve always taken me seriously, God, made me welcome among those who know and love you.

We can turn to worship (thank you A.D. for sharing this a while back): https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=Iooys8xC3QA

We can turn to Him in prayer, anytime – anywhere. It can be a simple, “I need You, Lord!”

You can text/call that friend, those friends, you know those ones that will pray for you at a moments notice!

Bottom line is we have a way out of it, a way into hope, a shift of focus that God gives us. It’s also okay to be patient with yourself if the discouragement is deep and long. God knows!

I just wanted you to know for this “before weekend read” that it’s okay to be discouraged and to be un- whatever because the truth of this hope we find in Jesus is truly unending and that is an “UN” that changes everything. Have a beautiful weekend full of hope. With all my heart, Sonia

Categories
Uncategorized

Road Work Ahead…Expect Delays!u

images-4

I was driving home from the beach around 9:00pm last week and turned onto a road that leads me to the freeway when all of a sudden I see this black lit up road sign that has this flashing across it: “ROAD WORK AHEAD. EXPECT DELAYS”. I’ve seen road signs like this before but for some reason this one seemed large and magnified to me – almost like I had put on 3D glasses, and this sign was the focal point. And then the thought struck me….this is what God has been trying to say to me all along, but it took a dark night, road work and a big flashing sign to get my attention! Basically He spoke to me through that sign to say that He is going before me to make a way for wherever I need to go so: THERE ARE GOING TO BE DELAYS – EXPECT THEM! There’s road work to be done (and not just road work, but heart work too). This was so profound to me because there are so many loose ends, so many things up in the air, so many situations needing resolutions, so many answers that I’m still waiting on and this constant feeling that I’ve been on an airplane just circling over a landing strip but haven’t gotten the green light to land yet. Have you ever felt that way? I don’t know about you, but I am unfortunately quite famous for jumping the gun when I shouldn’t and not jumping when I should especially when I feel like this. I am a “fixer” among all the things I listed in the first blog post so when things feel out of control – like delays – I try to “fix  it” by changing something so I don’t have to wait.  We all have a bit of “fixer” mentality – some more than others – I tend to lean more towards the “major fixer mentality” hence the timing issue I seem to have. There are several reasons for that. Since I’m the oldest, it was up to me to blaze the trail for my two younger sisters, and, for whatever reason, I also felt it was up to me to beat up anyone in elementary school who would give them problems. I think I was 8 years old when I first beat up a boy. He had been teasing one of my sisters at school because she had burns all over her face from an accident while helping my mom in the kitchen. I think he said something like he couldn’t eat his lunch because my sister’s face made him lose his appetite, and he got everyone at the lunch table to laugh at her. My sister relayed this story to me through her tears so I waited after school for the boy, and then beat him to a pulp. Even now, as I write, in the back of my mind somewhere is the default thought, “Don’t mess with my sisters!” I now know that the protective nature I have isn’t a bad thing when I’m “fighting” the way God calls me to – through prayer and being connected with God. I felt like I was always fighting as I grew up which led to me to lead a double life. There was the sweet, loving Sonia that helped people and brightened up a room and then in my private life, there was a whole other thing going on. It was rage. Merriam-Webster defines rage as “a sudden expression of violent anger.” As I write that word and its definition, tears are filling up my eyes. It’s a sad truth that sometimes the very people that look so loving to the outside world can be extremely hurtful to those closest to them behind closed doors. That was me. I was this person who couldn’t handle my emotions and would fight in explosive and damaging ways. At the expense of those I love, I put on a facade for the world to see and would take out all my frustrations and broken heartedness on them. It didn’t matter what self-help book or doctor recommended treatment I would try, nothing seemed to help. This went on for years. I am ashamed to say that. Before I go on, I want to say that I don’t want to use this blog for any sort of pity party or justification for things I’ve done so I’ll spare you the history lessons as to why I think this rage manifested in my life, but I will say that every wrong behavior has a root. And yes, I had some roots. I know for this reason and many others God has to deal with my mind and heart. During one of my outbursts my husband said, “God can heal you!”  To which I responded, “No He can’t! If He could have He would have done it already”. I am learning that spiritual, emotional and physical maturity is essential, but the spiritual and emotional growth must go hand in hand. That’s why I need to “Expect Delays”. I’ve got some growing up to do, and God has to point out the narrow road for me as I go. This takes time. It takes His perfect time. So today the Lord gave me this verse in my morning Bible reading (for those of you reading through the One Year Bible format you’ll recognize this from today): Proverbs 21:19 Better to dwell in the wilderness, than with a contentious and angry woman. The Lord knows I can go from “zero to contentious and angry” in less than a second so He gave me that gentle yet profound reminder because a little later in the day my husband and I would hit a bump in the road. I would love to say I stayed quiet and remained still before the Lord, but I wasn’t. I got angry and upset. I always wish that I was that girl who could just cry it out and her husband would love her and comfort her, but not me. I just got puffed up with ugly rage boiling up and out of me, BUT the good thing – the new thing, – was that it was over as fast as it started. In the past, this would be an all nighter and maybe go on for a few days, thankfully this was not the case this time. I allowed myself some vulnerability and said I was sorry. But more than that I looked to God. I had a conversation with Him in my spirit letting Him know how I was feeling and asked Him to help me. He did! He does…for all of us as we call on Him. Not only are we to look at the signs that say “Expect Delays” but also “Under Construction”. We are a work in progress! Five years later, in my walk with the Lord, I am as often the raging woman anymore. He is working in me, and I need to be patient with myself and others, and WAIT ON THE LORD. I’ll end this post here, but I wanted to also thank all of you who wrote me words of encouragement and support. It means so much to know we are all in this together 🙂 Please listen to this song (and dance too – it feels really great!). Stay blessed and thank you so much for reading!

With all my heart,

Sonia