Where’s Your Joy?

We’ve all been guilty of it…Mistakenly placing our hope, our joy and even sometimes everything that makes us who we are, in the wrong things. If you are in that place right now, you’re probably asking yourself “how did I get here?” There’s nothing wrong with taking some time to reflect on that question because you can’t resolve a problem without first figuring out how you got there. However don’t allow yourself to stay in that place so long that you remain stagnant and aren’t moving from how to now. How do you do that? I’m glad you asked…

 

After you’ve taken the first step of reevaluating how you got there, you then want to GET BACK TO THE BASICS. Yes, the word is where it’s at! I believe it’s rather significant that the word joy is written in the bible over 216 times. So what does the word say about joy? Here are a few scriptures…

 

 

Psalm 5:11-12 But let all who take refuge in you rejoice; let them sing joyful praises forever. Spread your protection over them, that all who love your name may be filled with joy. For you bless the godly, O Lord; you surround them with your shield of love.

 

Psalm 63:5-7 You satisfy me more than the richest feast. I will praise you with songs of joy. I lie awake thinking of you, meditating on you through the night. Because you are my helper, I sing for joy in the shadow of your wings.

 

Romans 15:13 I pray that God, the source of hope, will fill you completely with joy and peace because you trust in him. Then you will overflow with confident hope through the power of the Holy Spirit.

 

Galatians 5:22-23 But the Holy Spirit produces this kind of fruit in our lives: love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control. There is no law against these things!

 

 

These scriptures remind us of the truth, which is that our joy is not in man or the material things of this world but our full source of joy is found in God. It is very imperative that you continue to renew your mind on a DAILY basis. There have been times where I’ve had to check myself to do just that. I became so busy existing by working God around my schedule instead of working my schedule around God.

 

 

 

Finally, SET SOME STANDARDS! By doing this, you are making it a point to hold yourself accountable in not returning to that place of confusion and to continue keeping the main thing the main thing.

 

Today, I challenge you to dive into the word of God to see the wonderful things He’ll reveal to you about the true meaning of joy.

© 2012 De’Andrea Reese All Rights Reserved.

What Are You Waiting For?

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I remember growing up as a child, I was very quiet, shy and was always caught with a book in my hand. I felt by reading those books I was in some way able to escape the world I was living in by jumping into a life full of adventure that lied within those pages. I will never forget the day I was outside reading Tales of a Fourth Grade Nothing and my father said, “Nikki, what are you waiting for?” As a child being asked this question you quickly think, uh oh, what did I do? With a look of confusion on my face, he asked me again but this time more stern “Nikki, what are you waiting for?”
He then began to tell me how much he loved me and how he saw so much greatness inside of me. The potential was there but more importantly, I had to be the one to see those things inside myself. It was at that moment that I began to see everything differently. I loved to write poetry and short stories so I began to spend more time perfecting my writing skills. I submitted some of my writings in different competitions at school and even had the opportunity of having my short stories published in middle school and high school. I pushed myself more academically and greatly excelled in that area as well.
My “aha” moment took someone near and dear to my heart telling me that they believed in me and that I was destined for greatness but that I had to stop living in fear of failing. So my question to you is what are you waiting for? Are you waiting for an increase in your finances, for God to bless you with your husband or wife, for better circumstances? What are you waiting for? Are you waiting for your children to act right, for your marriage to get better, for your health to get better? What are you waiting for? Are you waiting for God to do awesome things in your ministry, for His promises to manifest in your life? Whatever it is that you are waiting for, God has already provided.
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Sometimes we tend to be stagnant in our walk by saying we are waiting on God. We believe that we have done all that we are supposed to do and we are just waiting on God to show up and provide. The thing is, 95% of the time God is actually waiting on us to be obedient to what He has already told us to do. Many of us have become so spoiled by our iPad’s and Smart Phones that we now have this microwave mentality. We want the quick fix blessing. We want the breakthrough but we refuse to go through and let alone break a sweat in order to receive all that God has promised us.
So what is it that God has been telling you to do that you still have not done? Did He tell you to cut some people out of your life that you are naively holding onto or did He tell you to put your pride aside and seek to mend that broken friendship/relationship that you gave up on too soon?  Is He asking for more of your commitment, obedience, more of your time and sacrifice? Whatever it may be, what are you waiting for?
The time is now to step up and step out on faith. No longer can you sit on the sidelines and watch your life pass you by. The only one that can hold you back and stop you from succeeding in life is yourself. I challenge you to let go of fear, worry or whatever it may be that is holding you back and get in the game. I truly believe that you are destined for greatness but in order for you to reach greatness, you must first believe in yourself.

© 2011 De’Andrea Reese All Rights Reserved.

From Unforgiveness To Freedom

“When you forgive, you in no way change the past – but you sure do change the future.” -Bernard Meltzer
Forgiveness has been a struggle for many, whether it is dealing with forgiving others or forgiving ourselves. However, to overcome unforgiveness you must first address the root of the matter and deal with it head on. For some, harboring unforgiveness is about past hurts from failed relationships, childhood abandonment issues and church hurt. Then there are those who struggle with forgiving themselves from decisions they have made in the past that have now caught them in a whirlwind of bitterness and resentment. So often, we hear about people who want to forgive but they are unsure of how to take the first step towards forgiveness. Here are a few that will help you to let go of unforgiveness and start living your life.
STEP 1: Acknowledge That You Haven’t Forgiven
There are people walking around in unforgiveness because they refuse to acknowledge the rotten root. They would rather sweep it under the rug or dress it up and call it something that it clearly is not. By doing this, you are prolonging the healing process, as well as stopping yourself from being able to move forward in life.
STEP 2: Acknowledge Your Roll in the Situation
It is very easy to point the finger at everyone else’s faults and their specific position in the matter, however this step involves taking ownership of what is yours. Look at the situation realistically by seeing it from the outside in. Many times when we do this, we begin to see everything in a new light. We see where we should have spoken up, when we should have removed ourselves from a situation or simply listened more.
STEP 3: Set Yourself Free
Forgiveness has nothing to do with other people but it does have everything to do with you. Meaning, you cannot allow someone else’s actions to determine your happiness and peace of mind. I am in no way minimizing the hurt you may still be feeling to this day, but there is no way you can successfully push forward in life if you insist on hoarding junk from the past. Know that whoever you are harboring unforgiveness towards is living their life, all the while you are the one choosing to be held captive. If this has been an ongoing struggle for you, I challenge you to seek God’s face in the matter, study His word and finally allow yourself to receive the freedom that is yours through Christ Jesus.
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Here are several scriptures you can reflect on pertaining to forgiveness..
But when you are praying, first forgive anyone you are holding a grudge against, so that your Father in heaven will forgive your sins, too. Mark 11:25


Instead, be kind to each other, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, just as God through Christ has forgiven you. Ephesians 4:32


But if we confess our sins to him, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all wickedness. 1 John 1:9

Though we are overwhelmed by our sins, you forgive them all. Psalm 65:3
But the Lord our God is merciful and forgiving, even though we have rebelled against him. Daniel 9:9
He has removed our sins as far from us as the east is from the west. Psalm 103:12

© 2011 De’Andrea Reese All Rights Reserved.