The Woman Who Walks With God…

…Will Always Reach Her Destination!

There’s something in the air or it’s that time of year again. Why all this hustle and bustle in early November? Maybe it’s a sense of entitlement or a lack of social etiquette? People are more rude, and they’ve become rather shrewd while loving to feud!

As I was running late to meet with an old friend for a dinner date, I could barely get halfway across the street before these trick-or-treat peeps decided to greet! These special peeps wanted to receive their treats that were more than just sweet; drug candy! Nothing was going to get in their way.

Always leave space for grace…

All I can say, there better be a day that I will get to vaycay. Maybe it’s time to wrap up the beach and put it underneath the tree and just be!

All I kept thinking to myself was: “Who let the animals out…”

As I wrapped my mind around this window of chaos and decided to continue across, my cell phone alerted me to a text message. It was my girlfriend canceling one minute before we were supposed to meet up for dinner.

Come on, one minute beforehand? What, you couldn’t have called thirty minutes beforehand when you were supposed to be in the car driving?

And then to text? This technological luxury has become an “out” for absolutely no accountability. What’s next, automatic replies?

Hmmm…

I got really angst because this reminded me of this girlfriend that had a tendency to do this repeatedly. One time she called and told me she was deathly ill and had to cancel, so I continued onto my day without much thought.

Then lo and behold, sitting at an intersection, I happened to look over and saw her driving a brand-new vehicle that everyone “but me” told her not to buy. In my heart, she is a big girl and it’s her life, so she can decide whether or not to splurge and buy herself a gift. I can only offer my opinion when asked.

Let me share, she almost had a stroke trying to run from me at that stoplight. I will forever laugh at how shame couldn’t get her from zero to sixty fast enough! Busted!

Something is wrong when we’re too ashamed or embarrassed to share our lives, gifts and blessings. It took her three weeks before she reached out after being busted. Friendships are supposed to celebrate the good times while supporting and helping one another shoulder the tough times, right?

I mean, I’ll jump in the passenger seat and get chauffeured around in your fancy-pants car any time; why be ashamed? No comparison or competition here, only celebration. I’m a beloved who’s had it all and lost it all.

I don’t want that kind of relationship with ANYONE. These comparisons and competitions are robbing us of beautiful friendships and lives full of peace and joy as we celebrate each other. Especially rejoicing with one another the blessings of God!

I don’t want the anxiety and anger that comes from dishonesty and guilt. If I have to prove myself to you, then that’s a relationship that is filled with deceit and betrayal. Where’s the freedom in love in that kind of arrangement?

The Bible exhorts us to “let your gentleness be evident to all…” (Philippians 4:5).

Blameless 1 Corinthians 13.13

 

When we sojourn in thriving relationships, we’re not going to be walking in opposite directions. We’re going to be traversing in the same direction. If we are not, then how are we supposed to hear each other and engage in life through intimacy in listening and sharing? Communication is vital to intimacy.

In today’s society, social media presence and “likes” seem to define our time, worth and value. God forbid, we should put our phones down for a couple hours! Are those hundreds of friends there when you’re sick? Do they really know what’s going on inside your bleeding heart that’s on the other side of the screen?

Are you freakin’ stinkin’ kidding me?

Isn’t that how we are with God? We just call upon Him when times are tough and then when that trial period concludes, we don’t think much about Him until the next catastrophe rolls in. Talk about a marriage of convenience! Prayer is not a flippant quickie; it’s a privilege!

Blameless Please Jesus Please 2

The woman who walks with God will ALWAYS reach her destination! She doesn’t walk away from Him once her needs have been met. Since she regularly walks with her Lord, she knows God’s deep mercies and tender heart. In fact, she mirrors His attributes because she walks so closely with Him each step of the way. 

God isn’t just a flippant prayer-for-relief line. God is our creator, the lover of our souls, the one who calls us His masterpieces and pursues us as His precious treasured daughters.

Life with God is more than a box of chocolates. It’s a journey where only One gets to carry the key to our lockets. We can radiate His Great Love and peace sojourning towards our destination until we walk through those pearly gates.

With all the beautiful festivities ahead, maybe we can emulate our Lord by spending time supporting and encouraging one another as we celebrate each other with grace and gratitude. We’re all trying to reach the finish line gracefully!

Until next time…

Thank You For Being Beautiful You!

 

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If The Pope Can Do It…

Confession or Humility?

What Pushes You To Your Knees?

What pushes you to your knees? How about who meets you there when you’re down? And when you’re done confessing your burdened heart, are you met with love and acceptance or judgment and condemnation? 

Being Fully Known and Fully Loved!

If we’re going to be totally honest here, I’m sure WE WOULD ALL AGREE that when we fess up and own up to our mistakes and less-than-stellar facades, we are met with anything but love. But why is that?

We all need “safe people” that we can shed a layer or two while being fully known and fully loved. At least I do…

The Pope accepts he’s imperfect. He even proclaims he needs forgiveness daily. If Pope Francis admits his hardships and imperfections, being the Bishop of Rome, with ALL power, prestige and influence, why are we so afraid to?

I don’t know about you, but when I’m pushed to my knees, this is where I find my real home, my comfort and my safe refuge. This is where my Lord meets up with every kind of crazed vomiting I could possibly upchuck. And sometimes…

Well, let’s just say projectile vomiting isn’t very attractive. In fact, it’s nasty, but sometimes a girl’s just got to release and purge…

This is where I am fully known and fully loved and accepted. This is the only place where I’m fully known and fully loved without judgment and condemnation. What a beautiful comfort it is. This is why the high maintenance side of me is constantly sitting at the feet of Jesus; I can be nasty!

That’s kind of sad, really… Even tragic. Why can’t we be fully known and fully loved in our own homes and communities?

If I profess with my mouth that there is freedom in exposure because of this Great Love and the confidence I receive while engaging in a relationship with Jesus Christ, why am I getting a sick feeling in knowing now is the time to push aside the preaching and teaching and REALLY start digging up the terror of truths at the bottom of the grave that I dug to keep all the deep hurts buried?

Why are we fearful in sharing our adversities, our tragedies and heartaches when it is here where our relationship with the Lord deepens and where we find where our great riches in life are?

Do you think the Pope gets discouraged by the actions of God’s people, especially those that betray others by acknowledging their beliefs, but not in their practices?

I think he does. I believe that’s why he’s been called to his position today. He appears to love and rule without an iron-fist governance. He can love through action, not judgment and condemnation, and correct without terrifying threats.

Do you think he feels betrayed when his friends (other priests) and family abandon and reject him like we do? Do you think he becomes embittered and immobilized because others mock and jeer him, especially when it comes down to his faith? That is called persecution, after all.

I believe he would pray for the offenders, be grateful for the lean times, the mean times, and any other times that draw him closer to our Lord.

I’m trying…

Adversity keeps us on our knees and deepens our trust and relationship with God if we don’t become embittered.

Heartaches are what has kept me close to my Lord. So for that, I am eternally grateful!

These beautiful truths penned by Timothy J. Keller are so fitting and remind us of the freedom and beauty found when we’re vulnerable enough to be fully known and fully loved:

To be loved but not known is comforting but superficial. To be known and not loved is our greatest fear. But to be fully known and truly loved is, well, a lot like being loved by God. It is what we need more than anything. It liberates us from pretense, humbles us out of our self-righteousness, and fortifies us for any difficulty life can throw at us.

There’s Freedom In Exposure

I want to be known and loved so I must continue to allow exposure! I’m a work in progress, as we all are, and I consider myself vulnerable and transparent, but I admit to covering over my deep hurts. I have been healed and have forgiven my violators, but it’s still uncomfortable to share such relentless grief and heartache.

With all the ongoing tragedies, I am sensing God to be calling us outside of our comfort zones by summoning us to unite and connect together to mirror His Love instead of hiding behind our closed doors in fear of being fully known.

Blameless Animated Heart

God gave me gifts and abilities to use for Him. These gifts may have come from the sprinkling of pain and suffering, but God allowed me to walk through these valleys so I could use these tools to effectively help others. They were given to me as a gift to be utilized for His service. To be a reflection of His Love.

I may not like the suffering I feel going through trials, but once I have walked through it, I can actually say this deepened love I have for the Lord would never have developed had I not had tragedy and heartache.

Until next time…

Thank You For Being Beautiful You!

Blameless Isaiah 46.4

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Peace In A Violent World…

Can It Really Be Achieved?

According to Isaiah 26:3, God will keep in Perfect Peace him whose mind is steadfast, because he trusts in you!

With all the strife, division, violence and destruction in today’s world, whether you are a part of it or have been effected (all of us), where do we go to seek shelter and refuge for peace?

The threat is real. Not even our congregations, a place of worship, is safe and sacred anymore. Can we really experience God’s perfect peace in turmoil?

I believe we can be steady and stable during the surrounding chaos if our trust is comforted with God’s mighty power and unchanging love. We don’t have to be shaken by all these cataclysmic events.

I loved how the Country Music Awards last night opened their ceremonial procession with singing Amazing Grace and extending words of peace and harmony! It is fitting, timely and full of truths.

The only Truth we can hold onto right now in a world that is full of destruction is God’s amazing grace! 

We Need To Love The Best We Can And Bloom From Our Roots

How do we love each other and unite together in a world where people would rather kill than sit down and communicate to express our thoughts and feelings or even agree to disagree?

I’m trying to lean into the Lord myself knowing Jesus wept by putting ALL my trust into Him so I can live in peace. I’m a beloved encountering many tragedies myself. But sometimes with all these worries on my plate, all I want to do is run away to my refuge located at the beach and hide while denying reality. 

Blameless Trust Your Path

The beach is my safe spot, my refuge, a place where I experience life-sustaining peace. This is where I get to meet and connect with my Lord freely and uninhibitedly. The presence of each sunset that the Lord magnificently paints just for me brings immeasurable peace as I engage in this period of stillness for rest, reflection and renewal.

I don’t know how my contribution towards “change” is going to look, but I’m not going to allow fear or worry to hinder my moving forward and trust my path. This is going to require God’s perfect peace; peace to hear, to guide and to direct each step.

God’s Love reaches to the depths of our discouragement, our despair, and even death. We are never lost or singled out from His Great Love. Tragically, we have chosen to remove God from our lives and homes and then we wonder where He is when calamity strikes.

I know what the Lord has done for me and what He has done through me. Let me share, His love builds bridges where division has separated and divided.

God’s love reaches every corner of every single one of our experiences!

God’s Love is immeasurable, like the ocean. With its vastness, you realize you’re but one part of many contributors to this magnificent portrait being painted. God’s peace is orchestrated through this opera of brilliant blue-jeweled water as the ocean music soothes with its gentle rippling waves. The air is heavy with ocean spray as the sea song of waves soothe and cleanse the soul.

This reinforces we have power, TOGETHER, with all the Lord’s holy people, to grasp how wide and long and high and deep is the love of Christ, and to know this love that surpasses knowledge (Ephesians 3:18). 

Blameless Psalm 84.12

We wonder why our world is where it is today with all the death, destruction and division when we’ve removed God completely from our lives and homes unless we want to cast blame. I don’t have all the answers, but we can no longer sit back and do nothing.

In order to contribute to change, we need to step out and come together understanding WE EACH MAKE UP and have A PART and responsibility FOR CHANGE through common ground. That takes trust!

Common ground is having 75 courageous women coming together one after another in bringing awareness of the heinous acts against women that Harvey Weinstein violated for decades. It took beloveds who were brave enough to stand up for the rights and justice of others and say enough is enough to initiate change. We can’t let fear and worry paralyze!

Coming Together, Praying Together, and Changing The World Together!

Change can be beautiful. This is where God turns our ashes into beauty. It starts with one bold and determined beloved. Where that bridge is built, others will come. It may initially be awkward, but through Love Himself, all things are possible!

Thoughts and prayers need to be lived out WITH actions! Prayer initiates action, not complacency. This requires peace to trust the One leading. I personally am not going to stop loving the unlovable, nor am I going to stop reaching out extending my heart and hand to those who need to witness the hands and feet of God in action because of fear or worry.

Blameless Darkroom Negatives

We can have a significant voice in this world. Peace overrides worry and fear. Worry only produces negatives in its darkroom. We can be gentle, firm and confident with peaceful spirits when we live out our lives trusting in the One Who is in control and Who will bring vengeance to those who try to kill, steal and destroy.

Until next time…

Thank You For Being Beautiful You!

Blameless Beautiful When We Come Together

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Simple Things Really…

 

Living Each Day As If There Is No Tomorrow!

We’re Singing In The Rain, When Most Think We’re Insane; What A Glorious Feeling, It’s All About Healing…

Just Singing, Singing In The Rain!

Ever notice those parents or grandparents that are squealing with delight and having way too much fun, more so than even the kids appear to be?

Do they know something we don’t?

I admit, there have been many times where I fulfilled the desires of my childlike heart and blamed this free spirit and craziness on the kids and grandkids, but not anymore. We are not guaranteed our tomorrows, and there’s a little girl deep inside that wants to come out and play.

Well, today was no exception…

Maybe that’s why I’m sick now!

Between the excitement from this weekend’s rain that had refreshed my soul with an internal temperature I could not control, well… WE just had to go out and play! 

Yes, it was all my idea so I will take credit for all the glares and stares.

Actually, I do declare they were just sentiments of wishful thinking and admiration in that they weren’t out there with us having fun.

Social media checking, television watching or cleaning the house was apparently way more important than playing in the rain and exploring the innocence and beauty of living life today.

Welcome to the freedom found when experiencing life with Grammy Tammy in Wonderland!

Not only did we go out and play and cause quite a commotion, but we were greeted with not one, not two, but three quack-quacks who were more curious than us!

Sojourning with the Lord this side of heaven can be quite an exhilarating ride when we humble ourselves enough to embrace a childlike heart and live life freely for each new day given without worry and apprehension. That can be kind of hard these days with all the tragedy and heartache, but it can be experienced. God’s sprinkling of love is available for us each and every day.

 

Blameless Rainbow That Keeps Giving

Like this past weekend, it was almost as though the ducks took on our role of experiencing this phenomenon called exploration with a childlike heart filled with joy, curiosity and wonder (inquisition at her finest!). That is, until the wild turkeys had to bombard us with claiming their turf in the surf!

If the turkeys only knew what consisted as part of the main focal point on Thanksgiving, they would have danced alongside of us. Gobble-gobble.

Misery may love company, but us quack-quacks love to play and sing in the rain. At least I do! And sometimes… well, let’s just say the little girl in me comes out to play in a profound way at times. I love a great adventure!

For instance, as my friends can all attest, backseat driving was never more comical than an adventure with me occupying that space. I am the one in the backseat exclaiming during an obnoxious stop light that is sitting idle in red tempting our patience (and my bladder), “In the name of Jesus, turn green so we can go before I go.”

Oh, and it worked, too. What a memory for a carload full of “established” women. The adventures of Tammy in Wonderland. Depends undergarments never looked so good!

Good Morning, Sunshine

You know that old song, Old MacDonald had a farm…

Indulge me here, please, as you sing along!

Old MacDonald had a farm
E-I-E-I-O…

And on his farm he had a duck
E-I-E-I-O…

With a quack quack here
And a quack quack there,
Here a quack, there a quack
Everywhere a quack quack!

Old MacDonald had a farm
E-I-E-I-O!

You know, I am really liking this being me kind of thing… There’s freedom in just being!

Grammy Tammy’s a big kid now!

I pray that your week ahead is filled with an outpouring of refreshment similar to the cleansing rains we have been blessed with here in Northern California. And with more storms approaching, I pray you will take the time to love much and to sing and dance in the rain as your week is sprinkled with new life and childlike wonder that will restore your soul with God’s amazing grace!

I’ll be singing and dancing somewhere; you know me!

Until next time..

Thank You For Being Beautiful You!

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When Your Child Asks For Prayer!

A Labor Of Love…

A Mother Holds Her Child’s Hand, For Just A Short Time, But Holds Their Hearts Forever!

As I sat in the chilling and all-too-familiar courtroom making small talk with the surrounding attorneys, fear of doom ushered me right into a place of needed defibrillation. My broken heart could not restore stable rhythm. These palpitations were caused merely by fear!

This courtroom battle is tied with an umbilical cord all around it.

I cherish these rare glimpses of his presence. They fill my depleted heart with warmth and comfort that only he can deliver. I couldn’t wait for this sustainable joy to be released throughout the courtroom when his presence entered.

You see, this joystick I was waiting for is packaged in a 6’5″ bundle of sunshine shackled in chains along with a bright orange county jail uniform. Those brief two- to three-second eye contacts with “I love you, mom” mutters had become the norm and the only visualization I would be blessed with each month for 14 straight months. 

I became more acquainted with every inch of his blonde hairline and the back of his head that I once cupped and rubbed as I nursed him, along with witnessing his body language displaying defeat and despair. Weekly visits consist of 30-minute video visitations where I try and share the love with matching colors. Blondes do look great in orange!

Blameless Sons

From the outside, this photograph above that was taken at Disneyland almost 20 years ago portrays a beautiful family happily on a treasured holiday. What you don’t see is the pain behind the facades painted so brightly. We were as tight and challenged as The Three Musketeers, but without the help emotionally, spiritually, physically and financially from a father figure and familial support, the tight rope became weakened and the roles somehow became displaced.

The payback for surviving this labor of love is oftentimes bittersweet. One must undergo grueling pain and hopelessness before the miraculous occurs!

My heart leans into my source of peace and power for the electrical stimulation to jolt my heart back into normal sinus rhythm by remembering the story of Hagar and Ishmael in the book of Genesis. They were basically cast away, cut off, because they threatened the heir with their existence.

As Hagar leaned in and called out to God in her distress, God met her right where she was and comforted her. She called God “El-Roi,” which in the original Hebrew tongue means “The God who sees” (Genesis 16:13).

Blameless Jail

I don’t know where you are today, but you are seen by God!

In this bizarre season of despair and fear the past 14 months just waiting for a court trial date, knowing your son feels unseen, worthless, not understood, nor defended, rips this mother’s heart to the core because there’s nothing I can do anymore except to trust the One who is writing my son’s story and to love and support him all I can.

I can do this because I know the Lord hears my relentless cries and pleas for help similar to how God heard Hagar in Genesis 16. God met Hagar right where she was. God continues to meet me right where I am.

People judge. People ostracize. Family ridicules and forsakes. Church members gossip. People fear you. Friends walk away. People demand YOU SHOULD BE DOING X, Y and Z, but fail to do anything except criticize and point fingers. Families divide.

Where’s the Love?

Whatever happened to “innocent until proven guilty” and “unconditional love”?

God is meeting my son right where he is. This wilderness is exactly the place where my son is seen by God. Not only seen, but now my son understands, “I have now seen the One who sees me.”

He can’t run or hide from God in jail. All he can do is look up and see how much God loves him and accepts him just the way he is. He is finally seeing that there is nothing he has to do to be loved by God. It’s not by belief systems, performance, denomination, works, conformity, you name it. His life matters and is worthy to be loved.

I no longer follow the Lord out of fear;

Instead, I follow the Lord out of Love!

I have walked quite a journey with the Lord; learning to follow Him through Love rather than follow Him out of fear. I have learned the meaning behind God’s attributes; His heart, His grace, His deep mercies and His will over time. He has never forsaken me. I am able to trust Him like a child in His provision.

There is nothing more torturous, more indescribable, than the shame and guilt a mother often feels when her child does something wrong, says the wrong thing, doesn’t act a certain way, or cannot fulfill society’s standard of perfection.

When a mother has to come to terms with the imperfections and the incomprehensible conduct of a world demanding perfection with no shortage of flaming arrows of torture, emotional darts of judgment and/or condemnation, life can be brutal at best.

With so much hate in the world, how does one scurry up enough compassion and devotion when your life feels defeated and hopeless?

God knew the solution to my need because He saw me. In simple words, my son said, “Mom, will you pray for me? I need those prayers!”

Mom, will you pray for me? I need those prayers!

The strength found in this umbilical cord that is sustaining and holding together this labor of love is powerful… Power of Prayer!

Ask a mother who’s been pushed to her knees due to a corrupt justice system, excessive force within our correctional facilities, bullying from law enforcement usurping their power and authority, and carrying shame and disgrace from the casting of judgment and condemnation.

I am not going to fear our story, especially when we’re right smack in the middle of it!

Until next time…

Thank You For Being Beautiful You!

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Dear Younger Me…

Blameless Dear Younger MeBlameless Dear Younger Me 5

… I Forgive You!

Every Decision To Live For God Will NEVER Leave You With Regrets!

Dear Younger Me…

I forgive you for not loving, even abhorring, the beautiful beloved God created you to be…

I forgive you for living your life trying to blend in and be accepted where you did not belong…

I forgive you for believing that you had to do anything but “Just Be” to be loved…

I forgive you for trying to look and act like others while burying the uniqueness, value and qualities your true self radiates..

I forgive you for giving away your innocence and purity to a boy who was dared and did not care…

I forgive you for hiding underneath your umbrella of protection due to the insecurities built around rejection…

I forgive you for allowing fear to cheat and defeat you…

I forgive you for allowing the lies of the enemy to rule over your life and live in strife…

I forgive you for not prancing through the poppy flower fields and for not dancing everywhere you pleased…

I forgive you for not believing you are enough as you plowed through the rough stuff…

I forgive you for trying to question and destroy the life that God intended as His prized possession…

I forgive you for every slash of your wrist that you could not resist to prove you did exist…

I forgive you for calling down the rapture as you drove yourself off that cliff that God decided to capture…

I forgive you for not living, laughing and loving instead of striving…

I forgive you for not fulfilling your marital vows promising to love until death do you part instead of building…

I forgive you for believing you must perform and conform to be loved…

I forgive you for allowing your life to be buried underneath every shovel full of shame and guilt instead of being carried…

I forgive you for believing you were not worthy of unconditional love…

I forgive you for allowing being orphaned to be equated with an abortion…

I forgive you for every assault and violation that you felt you deserved to receive…

I forgive you for not standing up and demanding your voice be heard in objecting to your uncle’s constant hands all over your body that resembled more like worms squirming through dirt…

I forgive you for choosing alcohol, drugs, depression and denial as a vice to numb the pain instead of receiving the grace and peace that only God can offer…

I forgive you for having to lay down on the bed just to zip up your jeans…

Blameless Tight Jeans or Friendship

I forgive you for NEVER wanting to wear those jeans again… (Yep, that’s what it looks like!)

I forgive you for your mistakes and failures and feeling like a disgrace…

I forgive you for not believing that you are chosen, pursued and loved beyond measure that would have ushered God’s favor of healing into motion…

These imperfections, mistakes and failures are what led you to be the beautiful beloved and considered highly favored of our Lord Savior.

Without these imperfections, choices and decisions, you would have missed out having this relationship with our Lord, not knowing or receiving His grace and tender mercies, much less embracing the beauty derived from the alchemy of transformation that salvation offers.

God gave and forgave much so you could see the strong, joyful, bold and courageous beloved that you are today in being His prized possession!

For that I am grateful!

One last thing: I do forgive you for living a life without God. Now you embrace and cherish every decision to live for God will never leave you with regrets!

Until next time…

Thank You For Being Beautiful You!

Blameless Living For God

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Soaring Above The Division!

Blameless Soaring

When We Understand Both Sides, How Do We Find Resolution?

My brief trip to Tahoe was amazing. Talk about prayers that moved mountains. It was infected, though, with “Christian issues” that I could not get out of my head or heart through prayer requests

I would love your input and understanding. I hate the evil in the world!

Children are so amazingly trusting and one of the main reasons why our Lord wants us to have a childlike heart engaging in our relationship with Him (Matthew 18). Children love and trust easily because they are not tarnished with adult feelings of shame, guilt or the insecurities that develop because of fear.

God holds us parents accountable for how we affect our child’s ability to trust, whether it’s hindering or influencing. There is no judgment or stone being cast here. I was a single mom working two jobs while raising my kids and let me say, I made my fair share of mistakes.

I did the best that I could do with the tools that I was equipped with! Admittedly, I transplanted my own fears and shame onto my kids.

Sunday at church, there was this beautiful family with lovely children sitting where every person coming into the congregation would pretty much have to walk past. They were sitting basically where they were showcased, right smack in the middle of the church, with no chairs in front of them and a ten-foot open space designed to guide you to your seats.

These children were “perfectly” groomed and “perfectly” acting. Every parent’s dream, right? They were greatly admired and easily acknowledged.

Being Grammy Tammy, I understand now why older folk love to acknowledge precious children. Children bring life through their gifts of innocence, wonder and infectious smiles.

I went up and introduced myself as we commonly do each week; getting to know our body of Christ. As I approached, the children’s eyes lit up. The mother, sadly, became agitated and quite angry with me when I tried to engage in a conversation. She was adamant that her children are NOT ALLOWED TO SPEAK TO OR ANSWER STRANGERS!

Talk about shutting me down. I felt assaulted. I’m not used to that kind of reciprocation. My presence was not WELCOMED! Mama hissed and her claws of warning hurt like hell.

I do respect that. I get it our world is unsafe, is getting crazier, and we need protection. I also admit that I am not comfortable with my own grandchildren going into the children’s church unless I know the person teaching. That means I am still transposing my own fears and control.

Churches have always been targets for evil and not a place to let our guards down. There’s just more awareness of it today; thank God! The enemy prowls around like a roaring lion looking for someone to devour (1 Peter 5:8).

Where do we meet in the middle to teach our children that fear has no rule in our lives? The way the mother approached this (yes, I am judging here), she is setting her kids up for failure by sequestering them because of her legitimate fears.

They were sitting in a spot that had eight to ten feet of open space around them to be displayed! Look, but don’t stop and say hi and share the joy?

If she’s really worried about strangers, shouldn’t they be sitting with chairs in front of them as a protective barrier? Just sayin’…

When I was in youth ministry, many of the high schoolers were home schooled. What a gift to give your children, but…

Keeping your children sequestered from the real world until they are 18 and then sent off to college just seems to be another invitation to disaster. How will they fight off the lures and temptations of the world if they’ve never been exposed to it beforehand?

Being a parent is hard, but I believe children need to be exposed to reality gently so they can watch how their parents react to situations and people, how the culture operates, and the peer pressures that are placed in society.

This mom was clearly adamant about her children being “protected” and that is her duty however she chooses to do so, but that anger slayed me right in half. I was overwhelmed with shame. I felt almost like loving on others and engagement were a crime.

Blameless Proverbs 22.6

So how do we steer children to Christ through our words, our examples and our acts of kindness when we refuse to allow them engagement with the world where we’re present?

As I turned for my chair in a pathetic sulk, I blessed those babies with the biggest smile I could blast and left the mother with a hand gesture:

Blameless Love Sign

Don’t I wish!

As I sat down and composed my pout, a young couple sitting in front of me looked, smiled and said hi. They had their three-year-old princess daughter named Alexandria with them. When the worship music began playing, this precious little girl captivated me. She extended both of her arms in the air so angelically as she swayed to the music. She was mirroring her parents’ actions perfectly.

As I praised God for this precious little girl worshiping the Lord freely and uninhibitedly until she left for children’s church, my heart tugged believing we should be instructing and teaching our children to engage in society without fear while protecting them with caution.

The Body of Christ is meant to gather for community, fellowship, to teach and encourage others to emulate the life of Christ that we all make a part of.

How are we emulating our Lord by teaching our children that everyone else is to be feared? Isn’t that developing division instead of building community and unity?

I get both sides, I really do. I am just trying to rise above the division while loving like Jesus in a world that is full of fear and evil.

Until next time…

Thank You For Being Beautiful You!

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Christians Don’t Have Issues, They Have Prayer Requests!

Checking Out Time

If Christians Don’t Have Issues, Then I’m Off To Lake Tahoe To Pray!

Someone’s Got To!

Seriously… Christians don’t have issues, they have prayer requests???

For whatever reason, I cannot stop laughing my assets off about this comical and engaging statement. You don’t have to walk very far to find humor here.

Sadly, this seems to be the attitude today in the church with all the hypocrisy and facades of some.

For the record, I am a Christian and I have issues. I’m not afraid to admit my imperfections, so…

This just glorifies my Father! I am only as strong as the grace extended and received!

Isn’t that where grace comes into play, anyways, into our issues?

There’s no need to hide from it or stuff it down further. Talk about emphasizing and making our “buts” bigger! But, but, but, but God…

Blameless Don't Get Dressed Without It

These issues are going to be there until we deal with them or buy new jeans. And buying a new pair of jeans each week is going to cost A LOT MORE than just monetarily! God will eventually tire of our “buts” and put us on a diet.

I’m going to try and pack lighter and clear out the garbage through prayer and application. I’ve been carrying around quite a load that I need to leave in Lake Tahoe. Time to dump and unload. My strength needs to focus on the present, not the funk from past hurts!

Our naivety believes our “image” is safe behind our facades. We need to take a look in the mirror. It follows us like a 5:00 o’clock shadow. What flows from our mouths exposes our hearts, and I want mine to flow out love.

There is freedom to gain when we admit our struggles and release them. This could be carrying around fear, shame, guilt or those horrible insecurities that lead us into actions and behaviors that are contrary to a loved and treasured child of God.

For me, the fear of judgment and condemnation interferes with my trust factor in allowing a sister and brother from another mother to shoulder my pain while holding me accountable. Betrayal issues hinder the blessings intended through community prayer! 

PRAYERS are meant to pull us in TOGETHER as we lean in to God to UNITE and claim the power of PRAYER!

That’s the beauty about prayer, we are leaning into God and snuggling in tight. He loves it when we are close enough to hear His heartbeat and gentle whispers. My heart loves and thrives on His heavenly smile.

The accountability partnership is powerful, if only we’ll trust. I want my attention or “issues” to be covered in prayer so I can love and love well while concentrating on emulating my beautiful Lord without tarnishing Him or my own character.

Admittedly, I have “issues” regarding abandonment and rejection due to being orphaned and abused that still gets triggered today even though I have received healing and forgiven my violators.

Let it go… Let it go… Let it go…

Sometimes it’s hard to let go of the assaults against us. But if we let go of the pain of the past, we can lose that weight and give God room to move on our behalf to bring healing to our souls. What a great way to increase our faith while becoming lighter!

And we all want to be lighter, right? I know I do.

No room for all that dirty laundry and heavy baggage to carry around. It stinks in more ways than the obvious.

Life becomes beautiful and more peaceful when we quit talking about the past and making it worse than it actually is/was. Surrendering that bitterness and rage offers a yoke that is easy and the burden light.

This peace delivered is similar to the beauty found in watching a dove fly off towards freedom!

Blameless Dove

Doves are a symbol of hope, care and purity. Letting forgiveness clean and heal our beautiful hearts is freeing like the dove.

Totally breathtaking…

We’re only as powerful as those we do life with! This weekend, this tiny, yet potent, beautiful beloved delivered a sermon about the junk we accumulate through life that weighs us down. Her message was as powerful as her authenticity in being a treasured daughter of our Lord God Almighty.

That’s what I am striving for, being authentic through word and deed as I sojourn this side of heaven.

Thank you, Janice Bird. I want my life to be as powerful and impactful for the kingdom as yours. Talk about an attitude to boot!

I have issues just like everybody else does. I am choosing, though, to work through those in deep prayer while escaping to Lake Tahoe. I just hope the intensity of my prayers doesn’t pull the surrounding mountainous terrain into the lake tomorrow. I plan on moving mountains with my prayers.

Stay tuned!

Until next time…

Thank You For Being Beautiful You!

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She Sat All Alone…

Blameless Belong All Alone

…Hiding Behind A Facade She Could No Longer Wear!

She sat all alone with her long brown hair covering her face. At first, it appeared as if she might be praying. But after a few minutes, the presence of her motionless body became awkward. I decided to break through the intensity of the silence by walking up to her and gently touching her hand.

After cutting through the tension, I softly spoke whereas not to scare her. Victims easily startle. “Excuse me, my name is Tammy,” I offered, as I reached out for her hand. That’s when her beautiful tear-stained blue eyes met up with mine. She wasn’t praying, she was hiding behind the facade that she could no longer wear and did not know how to react, much less breathe. 

Fear vs. Freedom

As we began to talk, I quickly gathered this beautiful heart was encountering the fight of her life: Fear vs. Freedom! I remember my own exact moment where my bloody screams for help were not met, nor my pleas to find someone, anyone, to listen to my voice and believe my story as a victim of violence.

My emotions were wrapped up so tightly, the moment anyone even brushed by my person, the unraveling would begin. The power that came from the turbulence unraveling knocked everyone down in its path.

Is that why no one would help? Possibly. Or was it because people were too afraid to get involved in the exposure underlining my veil of shame?

Two Minutes To Spare

My new friend had no idea that as she vomited out her fears, assaults and desperation right before me, God had already put into place a legal team and safe refuge. Talk about provision! You see, as she was freaking out, God already had all of us into place. Each person brought their own tools of grace and experience. No surprises here!

From the initial contact stemming from a friend about a friend of a friend, the next 37 hours would already be laid out with the right people, provision and plan of attack until the last tear dropped.

With two minutes to spare, this beloved’s greatest needs were being met with Love, kindness, and compassion that only victims of heinous crimes would understand. God knew and that’s why He divinely orchestrated all of us together.

Even if we would have had the time to meticulously and carefully plan everything accordingly to fit into place, including traffic from one courthouse to another, documentation preparation, legal team, court appearances, services conducted at the jail, and medical attention, it would have been chaos and met with resistance.

As I sat there nibbling, even chewing, on some of the words flying off the pages of the legal documents, hearing stories of tragedy and heartache from lost souls who have lost their power to fight and plow through to freedom was all too familiar and chilling.

Offering an extending hand to try and console victims with protection and guidance requires more than a big box of tissues and patience because with their issues, they are so emotionally spent and beat up, it’s hard to stop the blood from pouring out. They have cried so much, their tears are no longer clear. They are blood red.

For these violated beloveds, all they want is for their voice to be heard whether it’s appropriate or not. Now that they know they’re being heard, it’s hard for them to stay on point and quiet down. Someone cares. Someone listens. Someone hears. Someone believes. Someone supports. Someone understands.

Someone sticks around long enough to pour love into the torture and remove the handcuffs that have bound and held them captive.

Now there is eye contact that comforts instead of shames. Life that is loved and not harmed. New world filled with hope. Justice prevails. Healing begins. Lives restored. New life begins.

God’s Orchestration Is Always Perfect

Being at the end of our rope does not mean all hope is lost. We’re never lost to God, EVER!  We may move away from Him, but He is right there alongside of us. How else would a random stranger whom you’ve never met before be available for you right at this precise moment, an emergency one to boot, who could help you conquer these mounting legal issues along with comfort and understanding?

blameless-at-the-end-of-the-rope-1

When You’re At The End Of The Rope, Look Up.  God Is At The End With Hope!

Isn’t it funny how we may feel at the end of the rope, but when we look up, God is standing there at the end with hope? God’s Love and intervention never fails.

With two minutes to spare, we both looked at each other and smiled and laughed. God took care of the whole traumatic mess. Every “i” was dotted and every “t” was crossed. Not only did we share tears, lives, and bread, but we were blessed with new friendships. We now share a ray of light and hope in each other’s lives as we came together as a team and watched God show off amazingly all because God loves to give!

Talk About Provision and Protection!

Blameless Rainbow That Keeps Giving

I have been refined through many trials of suffering. Now I get to marvel and see how God has transformed my own life through the reflection of the beloveds God puts in my life to help bridge the gap between women escaping a violent environment and being assaulted to Beautiful Beloveds living in peace and freedom. When those shackles are removed, there is power knowing their voices will continue to be heard!

We all can be richly blessed in helping others when we allow ourselves to be inconvenienced and our lives to be interrupted with two minutes to spare.

Until next time…

Thank You For Being Beautiful You!

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Take The Time To…

Blameless Hebrews 6.19

Before It’s Too Late, I’m Taking Time To…

Live, Laugh, Love!

Care to join me?  I don’t know about you, but I’m numb, sad, angry, walking and living in smoke-filled ruins all due to the tragedies and heartache that seem to accompany each step sojourned this side of heaven. 

Between funerals, our roaring fires in California, the earthquakes in Mexico, to the tragic shootings in Las Vegas, along with the hurricanes that flooded and destroyed the south and surrounding tropical islands, it’s been a rough few months.  It hard to see the beauty, walk in the hope and remain joyful.

I have decided that before it’s too late, I’m going to take the time to live, laugh and love by utilizing some self-compassion and kindness on myself.  My heart and soul needs to be poured into and restored with a whole lot of sunshine.  Abiding in all hope!

Good Morning, Sunshine

Today I’m Going To…

Today I’m going to…  Take the time to remember that God loves me and He goes before me to prepare the way.

Today I’m going to…  Thank my Lord for His protection and provision even when I don’t understand everything as it develops.

Today I’m going to…  Take as much time as I need to receive the love and comfort that is being offered and poured into me.

Today I’m going to…  Tell someone, anyone, that I love them and that their life matters by pouring the love that is richly sprinkled over me into their lives!  What a privilege God gave us to be able to love!

Today I’m going to…  Stop and think.  Really think.  What a concept!  To be still in complete silence with absolutely no influence or distractions from TV, internet, or my phone.  Now that’s a source of power to plug into!

Today I’m going to…  Choose to be happy.  That’s a choice that we ourselves make, choose to be happy!

Today I’m going to…  Take the time and be okay with, maybe even fall back in love with, who I am and be comfortable in my own skin.

Today I’m going to…  Remember that being a people-pleaser robs me of my worth and value along with the boundaries that are meant to hedge in my protection.  My life shouldn’t be performed with a “me-focused” striving, it’s about being “Jesus-focused.”

Today I’m going to…  Be me!  Be beautiful me!  There’s power in acceptance.

Today I’m going to…  Go outside and play.  Unleash the little girl that still exists inside my beating heart.  Skipping along while singing a song is said to be the fountain of youth.

Today I’m going to…  Laugh out loud, even giggle, until it hurts my belly.  It is, after all, music to our souls.

Today I’m going to…  Dance in the streets or retail stores and grab someone to join along with me!  Now that’s grocery shopping!

Today I’m going to…  Read several different books.  After all, reading is the fountain of all wisdom.

Today I’m going to…  Pray.  I want to unleash that power that has been neglected.

Today I’m going to…  Be friendly and purposely engage with others to help them achieve a glorious smile.  After all, a cheerful heart is great medicine.

Today I’m going to…  Give to someone in need.  Life’s too short to be selfish.  Needs are everywhere we look.

Today I’m going to…  Take some time and work.  God gave me these gifts for success.

Today I’m going to…  Look in the mirror, without makeup and clothes on (hardest one for me), and thank God for creating and molding me, battle scars and all, into His beautiful masterpiece!  I can’t love unless I first love myself.  And that’s so stinkin’ hard!

Today I’m going to…  Cry!  Death and destruction surround my life so I must mourn that which is lost.

Today I’m going to acknowledge this amazing hope that we have which is a strong and trustworthy anchor for our souls.  Talk about reassurance of the love and encouragement that is ours when we find shelter in our Lord. 

My prayer is that we take the time to mediate on a few of these self-compassion elements and apply them to our lives.  We are imperfect beings living in a world that demands perfection, and it’s hard not to get caught up into those expectations.  When we apply kindness, truths, comfort and understanding to ourselves, we are caring for the truly important and beautiful beloveds we are.

We have this hope as an anchor for the soul, firm and secure.  It enters the inner sanctuary behind the curtain… (Hebrews 6:19).  That’s hope that is secure and totally immovable just like the anchor that holds the ship stable in a violent storm.

Until next time…

Thank You For Taking The Time To Be Beautiful You!

Good Morning, Sunshine

 

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Impossible? Wait, The Word Says Im-Possible! Tammy Tangent Tuesdays

Blameless I Am Possible

Impossible = I’m Possible

My God Says All Things Are Possible 

Tammy Tangent Tuesdays

Don’t ever tell a precious three-year-old, much less any treasured daughter of the King, that anything is impossible!  Apparently, this adorable beloved knows full well she’s loved and called.  And as such, she expects nothing short of encouragement and freedom to be and do all she was designed and created to be.  Her response, “Impossible means I’m Possible.  Watch me!”

Sigh….  Be still, my heart!  ♥♥

Hello Beautiful!  I pray that you’re allowing the Lord to send down His angel armies to help shield you from the enemy and to help fight your battlefields.  I know God has reached down in a powerful way helping me walk through the death of a dear friend while fighting my own fears and anger these past couple of weeks. 

With so much destruction surrounding us, we need some love to help navigate through all this evil and hate and help in pulling us through it.  I know it seems as if I’m crawling towards the finish line now.  Panic can be brutal and quite paralyzing.  How can we fight our battles when we can’t move?

God Calls Us His Beloveds Because He Designed Us To Be-Loved! 

Oh, what an amazing luxury, being a treasured daughter of the King, to be able to call upon and reach out towards the Lord God Almighty for help and to be loved.  That’s why God calls us His Beloveds, because He designed us to Be-Loved!  It’s that time again, it’s Tammy Tangent Tuesdays!

Reaching out to God to Be-Loved and Be-Healed is the greatest gift we can give to Him!

I don’t know about you, but sometimes I become so frustrated with life and people, whether it’s due to the daily mundane tasks or posing challenges or the maniac reactions of others, but Blameless Childlike Faith Matthew 18.3I just become irritated and weary in doing good.  I stumble as I fumble.  I want that child-like heart like my granddaughter who awakens sick with a high fever and snotty nose and yet, she is so excited to just embrace this new day, she does not allow any interference of negativity or worry to influence and alter her cheerful attitude.  She is ready to rumble and tumble.

Talk about embracing life with a childlike heart.  No wonder the Lord tells us in Matthew 18:3, Truly I tell you, unless you change and become like little children, you will never enter the kingdom of heaven.

And let me share, if she has even half the feistiness of this Grammy Tammy, she will turn right around with one hand on her hip and her other hand and pointer finger flailing through the air with great attitude boldly proclaiming, “Well, I’m possible.  Watch me.”  Now that’s spunk and attitude worthy of practicing.

Nothing Is Impossible! 

After all, the Word says I’m Possible!

Famous words from the beautiful beloved, Audrey Hepburn, “Nothing is impossible.  After all, the word [Word] says I’m Possible!”  What Audrey Hepburn probably didn’t realize when she made that statement, or maybe she did, was that she was announcing very loudly what both Mark and Matthew state in the Bible that with God, all things are possible.

Impossible?  No, I’m Possible!

We know Truths in the Bible are important when they’re emphasized by several individuals or the message’s importance is stated three times like John seems to do frequently when he points out the unique significance.  He may act like a nagging wife at times, but those truths are heard and well received! 

Both apostles Matthew and Mark point out in Matthew 19:26 and Mark 10:27 how “Jesus looked at them and said, with man this is impossible, but not with God; all things are possible with God.”

Weekly Challenge:  Let’s approach this week with a childlike heart and trust in our Papa God believing that nothing is impossible.  Instead, let’s walk out, “after all, the Word says I’m Possible instead of impossible.”  Every time you catch yourself saying, “This is too hard, God, it’s impossible,” let’s put the Great I Am in front of the Possible and walk boldly exclaiming, “I’m Possible.” 

Until next time…

Thank You For Being Beautiful You!

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Sailing… Takes Me Away To Where I’ve Always Heard It Could Be…

Blameless Psalm 84.12

 

Just A Dream & The Wind to Carry Me…

Trusting Your Future To The One Who Died For You!

The devoted and reassuring words spoken from His heart as He leaned in close delivered only what this treasured daddy’s little girl needed.  I snuggled in tight as I gave up the fight and did right by surrendering into His everlasting arms.  God’s Spirit gently whispered sweet affirmations deep into my heart, “You are my precious beloved.  I paid a dear price for you and 19679409_477832245885368_6598606206936840494_ono one will ever take that away from you.  For I know the plans I have for you, plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future (Jeremiah 29:11).”

As I left His presence, my heart was full knowing hope does not disappoint us, because God has poured out His love into our hearts by the Holy Spirit, whom He has given us (Romans 5:5).  You see, I fell in love with this man who died for me and so I was able to set sail confidently without any fear of harm.

The wind represents the Holy Spirit

I don’t know if you’ve ever been sailing, but to me sailing offers great solace and freedom to just be.  This peace and tranquility you receive while being in sync with the navigation system offers smooth sailing.  This is comparable to how we respond to life’s crises in hearing the gentle whispers of our Lord offering comfort and strength.

The beautiful lyrics of Christopher Cross’ “Sailing” sums up my sentiments exactly:  “Well, it’s not far down to paradise, at least it’s not for me.  And if the wind is right, you can sail away and find tranquility…  Sailing takes me away to where I’ve always heard it could be.  Just a dream and the wind to carry me, and soon I will be free.”

The Holy Spirit works like the wind beneath a sailboat.  Sailing depends on and engages with the wind to propel it on the surface of the water to get it to its desired destination.  Sailboats use the force of the wind to guide its progress.  We need the Holy Spirit’s guidance and sometimes force to direct and steer our lives when we become confused or complacent.

Sailing romances the wind.  You can flirt with the wind by observing it and have fun by dancing or even wooing it.  It’s playful!  This playing around with all the different wind directions equips you with the skills to sojourn more freely.  You adapt to its governance by learning the subtleties of its constant changes and acceptance. 

What a romance, accepting and adapting to its constant changes knowing the wind blows wherever it pleases.  You hear its sound, but you cannot tell where it comes from or where it is going.  So it is with everyone born of the Spirit (John 3:8). 

Wind cannot be controlled, it just must be accepted and adapted.  And with the world being filled with hurricane-strength evil, we need to change our hearts filled with hate and replace and unite together with love.  We cannot accomplish this until we love and trust God with our lives that walk and know Him.

Romancing the wind is similar to loving and trusting our Lord!

Our soul’s interaction with God is synonymous with the wind and sail.  We can accept the serenity of what is while following God’s lead which offers peace and protection or we can go at it alone seeking to control and manipulate the outcome leading to destruction.  We cannot control what the Lord allows to enter into our lives, but we can control our attitudes and responses.  Our role and focus should be with knowing and understanding His gentle whispers and breezes by sensing His direction before we set out for sail. 

How do we do this?  It takes time to learn, but the benefits bring lasting rewards like peace.  We cannot always control life.  Storms sweep by literally blowing us off course, thereby changing the direction abruptly requiring tacking, which is the turning of the boat’s head directly into and through the wind in order to make progress.  That takes resolve and practice to master.  But when we’re receptive to the changes and adapt to its current, we can work with it and gain smooth sailing again.

When we don’t know what the future holds and have dreams tucked into the folds of our hearts, a relationship with the Lord and brave prayer opens the doorway for the Spirit’s help. 

When I’m in pain or fearing the future, I often feel as if I can’t trust anyone.  The only one I have learned and experienced to trust, one whom never leaves or forsakes us, is My Lord.  God is not human, that he should lie, not a human being, that he should change his mind.  Does he speak and then not act?  Does he promise and not fulfill (Numbers 23:19)?

The Holy Spirit leads like the wind beneath our sail.  We would bode well to surrender all our dreams to the Lord and graciously follow His directive.  As Psalm 84:12 announces, Lord Almighty, blessed is the man who trusts in you.

Until next time…

Thank You For Being Beautiful You!

 

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We Are Beautiful When We Come Together! Tammy Tangent Tuesdays ♥

Blameless Beautiful When We Come Together

Alone We Are Scared, Together We Are Strong!

Be The Reason Somebody Smiles Today

smiley face umbrella

City In Mourning

As tears poured into Las Vegas late Sunday evening from our loved ones ascending to heaven smoldering the carnage and evil burning throughout this land, one thing is apparent:  We are lacking enough umbrellas in this storm to protect those who are left.  Because evil showed its face, we need love to step in and cover the sorrow from the tragedy and heartache overwhelming precious lives.

We Are Beautiful When We Come Together

Hearing our loved ones and/or friends did not survive this terror or were injured opens the flood gates of Hoover Dam wide open leaving us breathless and drowning in sorrow.  This grim reality enhancing how short life can be is something we all need to ponder and chew on.  And how dare we let those precious lives who were sandwiched between this evil not be grieved and mourned.  Their lives matter!

Lest we forget, “Why, you do not even know what will happen tomorrow.  What is your life?  You are a mist that appears for a little while and then vanishes (James 4:14). 

For all the victims healing from their injuries and the friends and families who have lost their loved ones due to the hands of evil, our hearts are heavy and we grieve right alongside of you.  I hurt, too!  ♥♥♥

To those we lost, we unite together for strength and build a connecting bridge in our hearts as we grieve this excruciating pain in losing you to heaven.  We want you to know, as a reminder and memorial built around our forever love for you, your tears saying goodbye as you were ushered to heaven will not be shed in vain. 

We promise to take our pain and be the reason that somebody smiles today in honor of your life.  We realize God’s Love is an action, not hate, and that our love for you is moving us into action.  What a grandeur celebration!

Alone We Are Scared, Together We Are Strong!

Lifelong Challenge:  We choose to grieve and then celebrate your precious life by pouring love and life back into others uniting as one.  We are beautiful when we come together and declare we will be an umbrella for another for all the times we cried together; we will be that light in the darkness that mirrors your contagious laughter and joy; we will donate blood in your name so another may live forever with your honor running through their veins; and we will continue to live and walk courageously in life as we cherish your memory that will forever be tucked in the folds of our bleeding hearts. 

Being God’s Umbrella and Rainbow During A Storm!

Be The Reason Somebody Smiles Today

Let it be known that we will confront this sorrow together because alone, we are scared.  Together we are strong, so we will comfort one another with our tears, prayers and presence.  We promise that your life will live on and never be forgotten.  Blameless Rainbow That Keeps GivingThrough smiles, a hug, a touch, a prayer, being present, opening the door, letting others in during traffic, an acknowledgement, buying someone’s coffee or groceries or dinner, just a loving act in honor of your life will be recognized as our tribute to you declaring your life.

There are not enough umbrellas or rainbows in this world right now that could shelter us from the tragedy and heartache that have affected so many.  The tears pouring out of heaven after this tragic Las Vegas massacre requires all of us to come together to shoulder the pain. 

We are a nation in need of grieving to heal.  This is not an appropriate time for your political satire, nor to take anything away from the loss of life in order to bring up this inappropriate debate regarding gun control right now, nor to cast blame politically and/or religiously.

Be The Umbrella That Keeps Radiating Beauty

We are beautiful when we come together.  Let’s offer resiliency and offer hope.  Bringing love and light into a very dark and blue period radiates our Lord.  Blue smileyIt’s truly a time to come together, offer hope, grieve together, bring peace and decide now to include unity, to believe it, to support it, and to walk in love as we get rid of division while bringing faith and love back into our communities.

Every life matters and stepping out together through love outside of our comfort zones stomps the evil.  We can’t give up and let hate rule.  When we all come together and link arms, you won’t find a stronger wall built around and interlinked together to stomp and crush evil underneath our feet.  Where there is hate, Love more.

Jesus is weeping over our sorrows and He is capturing every tear and placing them into a bottle.  Christianity can no longer hide in darkness.  We are called to be a light, to stand out and not blend in, and bring love, hope and peace to a world that is so in need of our Lord’s Great Love! 

Only God’s peace has the power to usher in healing.  It’s time to share the love, bring unity into our communities, and realize we need each other! 

Until next time…

Thank You For Being Beautiful You

Enjoy Mandisa’s appropriate song for this tragedy “We All Bleed The Same“. 

 

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Why Can’t I Be Accepted As Imperfect?

Blameless Because He Lives

Because He Lives, I Can Face Tomorrow!

Imperfections and All

There was this amazing piece roaming around Facebook that one of my beautiful girlfriends posted.  She is as stunning and beautiful physically as her compassionate heart.  She’s not afraid to post things that promote the truth and/or validity of her cause, nor does she relent while crying over spilled milk. That is called a tender heart… A beautiful heart… One that is highly imperfect and yet still beats!

This post was actually quite simple and silly, really…  Along with requiring a picture of yourself above the proclamation (can’t run and hide now) in being imperfect, it was just acknowledging through admittance that we, as women, moms, sisters, grandmothers, sometimes fail.  Not only that, but we don’t always say or do the right things or have any answers to interject.  Moms may know it all, but… We just plow through each day offering our love and support, whether it’s enough, right or wrong.

We admit that we don’t walk around with hourglass figures tucked in nicely (tucked??? more like smashed in) under our Spanx shapewear or even have perky breasts that our underwire push-up bras present. Those days are long past.  The only thing perky after birthing and nursing children is our blessed children themselves.  And when you look into their eyes, they’re far more valuable and worth every sagging inch of the bosoms resembling utters. Talk about a beautiful distortion; imperfection and all.

It’s okay and rather fulfilling to acknowledge that, admittedly, I’m not the most beautiful woman in the world, but I am me and I am a Beautiful Beloved.  Beauty lies in the mind of the Be-Loved and how she makes others feel!  And there is only one me with all my unique qualities and characteristics that radiates this love and light into this dark world that is so needed.

Even with this admittance, I have secrets that I’m somewhat ashamed of, but they have made me the Beautiful Beloved I am today. With all these battle scars delivered during these wars and costs of imperfection, it has given me a history that ushers me into the direction of those who need loved on.  It is because of my Lord’s Great Love (1 John 4) that I can face tomorrow.  That’s the meaning behind:

There is no shame in our game; Jesus is His Name!

I am imperfect and I accept that.  Even promote that!  How about even proud of that?  I am not ashamed that I am quite different than anyone else, nor am I ashamed of my gender and who God designed and created me to be.  I am a voice of reason for those who have lost theirs; that’s beauty and significance right there.  All due to my imperfections.

I have a big mouth and oftentimes the deliverance is not appropriate and/or filtered.  This allows me the opportunity to learn humility by apologizing and acknowledging my need for forgiveness when my imperfections have gotten the better of me.  Isn’t that called growth anyways and how we learn?  Why do we always have to be perfect?  Who defined perfect anyways?  Is that the meaning behind, “It’s my way or the highway”?

I love to be silly.  Girls just want to have fun, you know!  And even though I’m getting older, it doesn’t mean that the silly little girl inside of me doesn’t emerge from time to time and loves every minute of it.  As Cyndi Lauper sings, “Girls just want to have fun…” and I’m following right alongside of her dancing without any mercy.

I refuse to live another day putting on this “image” or “facade” any longer, but rather walking confidently knowing I’m made in God’s image.  There’s freedom in loving the Beautiful Beloved God designed and created us to be.  I am who I am, who God created, and I make absolutely no apology for who I am.  You can either love me, like me or sadly even hate me. 

One thing is certain:  My love is unconditional and if I love you, I will love you with my whole being and heart, but that will entail acceptance of imperfection!

Because He lives, I can face tomorrow, imperfections and all!  Thank you, Jesus!

Until next time…

Thank you for being Beautiful You!

 

This post was first published on Medium.com.  I am merging venues that are compatible to make my life simpler in this daily challenge of writing… ♥♥

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When A Great Multitude Is After You!

F.E.A.R.

Trudging Through the Valley of the Shadow of Death

† C-R-I-S-I-S

This Battle Belongs To The Lord!

“Do not be afraid or discouraged because of this vast army.  For the battle is not yours, but God’s” (2 Chronicles 20:15).

When fears of reality set in.  You can either face everything and run or face everything and rise!  I’m running…

Or wanting to!!!

What was once lurking in the shadows to kill, steal and destroy is now looking you square in the eyes!  You look to the left, to the right, even behind you, but this enemy has one thing on his mind:  Destruction, and you’re already suffocating! 

It has been said that:

Crisis leads us to seek God and to experience Him!

That all-consuming feeling of dread with no solution in sight.  You’re panicked.  The chest tightens.  The heart’s erratic pounding attempts to blow out your eardrums until the hyperventilation cuts off all oxygen to the brain ushering in tingling that rages throughout your body and renders you paralyzed; all stemming from the test delivered by the multitude

That’s fear delivering a full-blown panic attack initiated by facing the reality of these crises which surround me.  Their relentless push against my faith leaves me utterly deflated.

Crises come in various forms.  The intense difficultly and important decision-making requirements from this vast army can be health-related, relational (good ‘ole family funk), financial, vocational, legal, or even spiritual.

My panic attack included all the above.  And after the bad hair date with my dreamy surgeon, where’s a girl to go to get massive reconstruction these days?

Where’s the faith, hope and love that is at the heart of this girl’s life when battling the enemy whose affliction and agitated fear has plunged me into quicksand?  

God Fights Against Our Vast Armies

I know God has delivered me from the shackles of fear, Perfect Love casts out all fear (1 John 4:18), but I am truly trembling.  I understand that difficulties strengthen our character and deepen our trust in the Lord as we lean and press in.  I also know they equip us with greater confidence that helps us grow, but this girl is nearly six feet tall already, so…

Overwhelmed By Circumstances

No matter how loud or hard you scream for help (I have a big mouth!), I never thought that the quicksand could take me under.  The swampland has never succeeded before, but it nearly did this time, and I experienced and felt things deep inside that I don’t remember ever feeling. 

Just because I’m seasoned in my faith walk and madly in love with my Lord does not mean I do not get overwhelmed by circumstances like new Christians.  Especially when it hits all at the same time.  I sink quicker!

When there’s absolutely nothing we can humanly do, problems everywhere, hurricanes and earthquakes to name just a few, one thing after another, along with being surrounded by those against us, that’s when we have to look up and see God standing there reaching out saying, “Treasured daughter, look to me.  Grab my hand.  Keep breathing.  I am right here.  You are not alone.  Nor are you left to battle this crisis alone.”

What happened to your faith?  Why did you take your eyes off of me and focus on this raging storm surrounding you?  Nothing has changed except your focus. 

I had never felt the weight of this kind of crushing crisis.  And I’ve lived through my fair share.  That’s when the Lord guided me to 2 Chronicles 20.  He reminded me of His Truths with absolutely no sugared-coated serendipities!

Testing sucks…  Especially in the form of crisis.  You know, this feeling of dread and hopelessness that I felt was overwhelming.  Between the panic that overwhelmed my body and the lack of oxygen going into my brain, it made my body quiver and shake.  It clouded over any natural fight-or-flight response.

I started to react with old behaviors where I would deny it and run like a mad dog or even reach for a bottle of Jesus Juice (wine) to numb the feelings that were raging throughout my body, but this time I am facing these crises head-on and I hate every second of it.

During our crisis, we need to see and experience our God.  When the enemy invades and we feel completely hopeless, we are inviting, even leading, God to intervene on our behalf and speak into the situation.  That means adjusting to God’s lead, not the other way around, darn it!  That includes feeling the pain, experiencing it and letting it go.

Face the Facts with Faith

As Rick Warren said, “Face the facts with faith.  Faith is not denying reality, faith is facing the facts without being discouraged by them.” 

God is greater than our problems, but being phony and denying how we’re feeling and thinking is a flat-out lie.  Worst-case witnessing, Christians lying, even denying, the truth of their realities.  How else can we learn?

Faith is facing the facts without being discouraged by them.  This is why I try and remember to faith the fear!  This battle belongs to the Lord. 

My proclamation:  Beloveds who choose to keep their focus on our amazing Lord walk through crises courageously because they know that heaven rules and earth will never have the last word!

Until next time…

Thank You For Being Beautiful You!

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I Just Washed My Hair and I Can’t Do A THING With It!

It’s Hard Being Me!

For Girls Only

What was I thinking???  I succumbed to the pressures of his relentless requests.  Between his text messages, phone calls, church attendance and his random notes tied around bouquets of roses (which stole my heart ♥♥), I don’t know if I was feeding into his vanity with my polite attentiveness or allowing his tenacity to usher in a one-up.

Honestly, I have not been out on a “real date” in over ten years and I was more than comfortable with that.  My picker had malfunctioned and led me down a path of heartache in the past, but you’ve got to give a girl credit for risking everything for love a couple of times, right?  Especially with her rejection record.  Talk about courage and strength!

And no, don’t ask me who it was.  For my eyes only!  I will share, he was indeed a tall, dark drink of water who wears a uniform sometimes 24 hours a day!  Oh, my palpitating heart! 

Ha!  That could mean anyone from First Responders to UPS drivers.  I’m bad, I know…  A girl’s got to keep SOME secrets, you know!

Oh, and in case you are still trying to figure it out, don’t forget that seasonal shopping is upon us and Santa Claus wears his uniform 24/7!

I’m so bad…  And I’m loving every minute of it!!!  My blog has been way too serious.  Now it’s time to have some fun and be me!

Life is and should be a box of chocolates!

Normally whether I’m in court, doing chaplain work, barking at our INJUSTICE system or running around town, my look consists of a dress and long blonde hair.  In court the suit wins, but around town, the long hair tucked behind the ears is who Grammy Tammy is. 

Gotta keep a youthful appearance, right?  I like the easy-breezy side.

So getting ready for this long-awaited date with “the” tall, dark and very persistent handsome man should require a little extra prepping time getting ready, right?  Well, I showered and got ready like any typical day except I gave myself an extra 30 minutes to prepare for perfection. 

Oh my!  Fatal mistake number one.

Once I finished blow drying my hair, it looked amazing; never looked better.  It almost resembled a straight iron along with the soft curls.  Only us girls know what that looks like. 

So I got dressed and brushed my teeth for the last time.  Gotta have spearmint breath, right?  Yes, even us grandmas worry about that same stuff, girls; especially me!  It’s kind of an OCD thing with me. 

I glanced over at the clock and realized I had 40 minutes until I had to leave to meet my date.  Well, shoot, with that amount of time left over, I glanced at myself in the mirror and thought I could do better. 

So I brushed the hair out along with the curls and combed in the frizz.  I added some hairspray and low and behold, my beautiful perfection turned into a breeding, raging bird’s nest.

Come on, girls, we know what we do with our hair when we keep on messing with it?  Think about a silky, thin-haired blonde with hairspray and a back-comb; oh Lord, have mercy!  Can I hear the screams from a bird’s nest?

Blameless Bad Hair 7

Do I hear a meltdown?  Yep, you got it!  Oh, it was so much more.  Not even a bottle of Jesus Juice (wine) could have taken away the sting from the pain that I saw looking back at me.

And now the clock strikes past and I am late…

What’s a girl to do when meltdowns ensue all in the name of love and vanity?  She throws the hair behind the ears instead of up in a tight bun and dashes out the door leaving behind a trail of tears.

Now we welcome the Gene Simmons’ look from Kiss, you know, the black racoon eyes.  Just beautiful!

Here God tells us in His Word that our beauty is to be adorned with the lasting beauty that is found in our hearts, filled with a gentle and quiet spirit (1 Peter 3:3-4) and not the hair, makeup, jewelry and fine clothes that we put on and believe beautifies us.

God never said natural beauty was full of chaos and meltdowns.  This exit resembled more like ravens fleeing from a comfy nest!

After the meltdown and feeling less-than beautiful for my tall, dark drink of water, I rose to the occasion, bad hair day and all. 

Here my Romeo dared to be late (strike three) or he was hiding, sitting at the bar laughing his assets off as to how I looked with my bird’s nest and racoon eyes, and my mountain of irritation was at full bar. 

Once my Romeo announced his arrival, our eyes met, and the evening and chaos was met with anything but good times.  Our restaurant was surrounded with mirrors and every mirror was filled with an admirer:  Romeo and My Hair! 

My nest gave birth to the definition of Carly Simon’s song, “You’re So Vain.”

You walked into the party
Like you were walking onto a yacht.
Your hat strategically dipped below one eye
Your scarf, it was apricot.
You had one eye in the mirror
As you watched yourself go by.
And all the girls dreamed that they’d be your partner
They’d be your partner,

and

You’re so vain.
You probably think this song is about you
You’re so vain.
I’ll bet you think this song is about you
Don’t you?
Don’t you?

Until next time…

Thank You For Being Beautiful You!

 

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Find The Gold In Everyone! Tammy Tangent Tuesdays

 Blameless Gold

It’s Easier Than You Think!

He who seeks good finds goodwill,

but evil comes to him who searches for it.

Proverbs 11:27

Hello Beautiful!  I pray your heart is overflowing with joy and love this week as you saw how easy it is to be the hands and feet of God bridging the gap from last week’s challenge.  The simple random act of that little boy laying his life down creating a bridge so the little girl could walk over safely was eye opening, wasn’t it? 

Laying down one’s life is exactly what Jesus did for us and can be mirrored when clothing ourselves daily with courage and kindness.  It’s that time again; it’s Tammy Tangent Tuesdays!

Why is it so hard for us Beloveds to encourage, inspire and compliment one another and even be the recipients of such blessings?  Why do we push these gifts away while being suspect of motive?  It appears we’ve become more concerned with spending exhaustive amounts of time looking for the dirt in others instead of seeing the golden nuggets that they are.

If we clothe ourselves daily with compassion and human kindness, we won’t have to look very far or even closeup to see the gold in other beloveds.  Encouragement through compliments and support is something we all desire and need on a daily basis and yet, it is becoming suspect when one chooses to speak words of affirmation.

I love to spend time meditating on the Word because I need daily (more like minute by minute) inspiration and guidance so the Lord can spread His umbrella of protection around my heart.  I’m a Beloved just like the rest of us who can turn at a moment’s notice and hiss at others while allowing my attitude to destroy and tear down others instead of building them up.

My jolts of joy need building and that takes a lot of time with my Lord.  When I leave His presence, I am filled with His Love knowing I am precious in His sight, I am His masterpiece, and I was designed meticulously with unique qualities that no one else has or could offer, so I leave feeling refreshed, restored and beautiful.  With this blanket of love and confidence, I get to change the atmosphere and do so by identifying all beloveds as Beautiful. 

I mean, come on, who doesn’t want to be addressed and affirmed as beautiful, right?  I know I can never hear it enough.  And since I’m single, that means I need a double dose of being called beautiful so I can absorb and reciprocate it with the spreading of love. 

People that know me or have met me embrace the gift that they’re going to be referred to as beautiful whether they like it or not.  This includes whether I am walking into a meeting, church, or even at my doctor’s office.  I try to sprinkle love by welcoming beloveds with a smile and the greeting of “Hi Beautiful!” 

We’re in a culture and society now where the fertile soil is ripe for receiving seeds of encouragement and love which will blossom into beauty through the depositing and cultivation of celebration.  This can be done through the power of words.

What is sad, though, with all the darkness and division today, rarely do beloveds get to hear building words of inspiration from a stranger or even their friends and family that they’re considered beautiful.

Why are we suspect when someone calls us beautiful?  Why do we feel uncomfortable and almost awkward when receiving not only the Truths about ourselves, but positive reinforcement as to who God designed us to be?

I will admit, some of the initial reactions from Beloveds are quite comical.  When I say hello for the first time saying, “Hi Beautiful, how are you,” they look confused and perplexed.  They have even become somewhat suspicious or awkward by such a greeting.  You would think I had leprosy or was some weirdo dangling a you’re-being-robbed note by their expressions initially, but then that fear turns into a beautiful softening of their aura.

giphy2

We need more of God’s outpouring of Love to blanket others especially when being referred to as beautiful creates fear.  I don’t know about you, but when we feel treasured and pursued, the world becomes a more beautiful place and we’re able to radiate His Love and change the atmosphere.  Being told we’re beautiful changes everything!

Can you imagine a world where beloveds are running around and engaging with one another confident?  How about even celebrating each others’ lives as beautiful?  Talk about powerful.  The comparing, the competing, and the criticizing could be turned into supporting, celebrating and encouragement instead.  Now that’s a beautiful world!

Blameless Proverbs 11.27

Weekly challenge:   Let’s challenge ourselves to be an inspiration to ALL BELOVEDS we cross paths with this week by identifying them as “Beautiful.”  Let’s encourage each other with words of Truth, words of praise, words of encouragement and support.  Let’s shock and change the atmosphere everywhere we go.  This domino effect will usher the world into the presence of what the kingdom of God is like this side of heaven wherever that love travels to.  That’s an easy bridge to construct, all in the name of Love.

Where’s the love?  Let your words release the brightness of the Lord and let it fly. 

giphy3

Until next time…

Thank You For Being Beautiful You!

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The Eyes Tell A Story More Powerful Than The Tongue!

Blameless Life

Do Our Eyes Reflect Spiritual Light Or Darkness?

The eye is the lamp of the body.  If your eyes are good, your whole body will be full of light (Matthew 6:22). 

I was feeling sassy and playful.  Confidence oozed from my pores.  I finally had that skip back in my step.  I had allowed discouragement and what I perceived as “defeat” to rob me of my strength and joy.  But my eyes were screaming, “I’m back…”

I thrive pursuing a blameless life emanating joy because I love my Lord who gives me comfort and courage, but attack my character and/or a loved one’s, that temptation to leap and pounce on the prey that stands before me becomes my greatest sin and battlefield.

This Beloved was graciously rewarded with joy that could not be contained.  The intensity when God stretches your faith and trust by using you as His vessel to shake up an evil and corrupt justice system is hard not to rejoice and celebrate over.  Vengeance belongs to the Lord!  But… the containment found in the eyes tells the story of a longing fulfilled. 

Our hearts mirror our souls and are reflected by our thoughts and what we see and hear!

We have to protect what we see and hear daily and what we allow into our lives.  Sometimes we don’t have that choice and that can usher adverse effects on the condition of our souls.  When we have a growing, intimate relationship with Jesus, our eyes are more radiant because they’re fixated on Him and not our problems.  When we become discouraged and defeated, that glow and twinkling loses its brilliance.  As hard as we try to hide our feelings, we forget how our eyes speak with their own language. 

Can we say animated???  You bet!  Daggers…  Venom…  Deadly…

Seriously though, I was skipping merrily along with jolts of joy because the Lord took victory in using the weak (me, me, me) to take down the strong (usurping authority).  I was radiating confidence that this wounded warrior only dared to dream about (1 Corinthians 1:27). 

So now when God ushers me into situations that are way over my head and expertise and full of fear, I won’t freak out as bad because I have this faith-building deliverance that strengthened my faith.

A person’s thoughts are discovered and exposed by examining the eyes!

Let’s face it, when we’re upset, our eyes are a dead giveaway.  We don’t need to open our mouths.  There is more fire and toxicity than light.  Have you ever looked in the eyes of a person filled with rage?  I sure have.  Let me share, it is frightening.  All you see is a blank stare filled with death and glazed-over fire.  There is no flicker of life in those eyes.  When you encounter a person filled with joy and the love of the Lord, their eyes twinkle and radiate their soul’s health.

I used to struggle focusing on the Lord when I lived in darkness filled with fear, despair and depression.  Life can be really hard at times, but until I claimed and received the Lord’s outpouring of Love that permeated my heart, His light could not be radiated.  It is up to me now to keep the rekindling process alive so I can thrive and not just survive.

Blameless Beauty of a Woman

The true beauty of a Beloved is seen through her eyes!

I don’t know anyone that would enjoy spending time in the presence of a beautiful woman with hate in her heart and eyes filled with darkness.  The true beauty of a Beloved is seen through her eyes and how she makes others feel!

Have you ever noticed the person you were talking with seemed to have a twinkle in their eyes when they were talking?  Maybe there were tears overflowing from the ducts of their eyes or a redness that shadowed the whites of their eyes.  Paulo Coelho wrote, “The eyes are the mirror of the soul and reflect everything that seems to be hidden; and like a mirror, they also reflect the person looking into them.”

I want my eyes to project the strength of my soul.  That doesn’t mean they won’t gush tears from the sorrow of my soul from time to time, but I want them to radiate my soul’s beauty and strength that is found within the eye’s twinkling.

Always pray to have eyes that see the best, a heart that forgives the worst, a mind that forgets the bad, and a soul that never loses faith!

When people look into your eyes, do they see life or death?  When you speak, do your eyes twinkle with sincerity and excitement or do they radiate judgment and darkness?  Our eyes speak louder than anything that could flow from our mouths, filtered or not.

When life takes me through turbulent storms, I want immediate relief and an umbrella of protection.  When the waves are constantly pounding me up against the rocks in the raging sea and I find myself struggling not to go under, my soul clings to:

You Are Much Stronger Than The Storm!

Faith and trust enables us to see through the Lens of Love Himself with no borders and/or boundaries leading us to sojourn confidently while taking risks and living in peace that surpasses all knowledge.  What story do your eyes show?

Until next time…

Thank You For Being Beautiful You!

 

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Clothing Ourselves With Compassion and Human Kindness!

giphy

Our World Needs Us Dressed and Ready To Bridge The Gap With Love and Human Kindness! 

Tammy Tangent Tuesdays

Hello Beautiful!  I pray you are embracing this week realizing just how beautiful you are along with being blessed.  After all the tragedy that has developed around the world these past few months between the riots, terrorism attacks, earthquakes, raging fires and the destructive hurricanes, there are a lot of hurting and down-and-out beloveds that areBlameless Blossoms True Beauty Within suffering and in great need of some human kindness.  If we could only remember that living in peace blossoms the true beauty within, we would be reminded how important it is to get dressed daily in God’s Great Love.  It’s that time again, it’s Tammy Tangent Tuesdays!

Admittedly, last week I was full of woe and worry.  This week I am filled with gratitude and determination to make a difference in the lives of so many hurting beloveds.  I was fortunate enough to come through all of these natural disasters unscathed, but I have many friends who were on the receiving end to all of this destruction and were wiped out completely.

Where do you go or even start to clean up when the whereabouts of the front door to your home is nowhere to be found or it’s buried beneath six feet of water?  Talk about overwhelming.  Many don’t even know how to start cleaning up because of the emotional layers filled with turmoil, much less not having the necessary means to maintain sanitary conditions like clean and running potable water and electricity to make the environment habitable.

Colossians 3:12 reminds us to start each day as God’s chosen people, holy and dearly loved, clothed with compassion and kindness, to name just a few.  The only way we can be dressed with compassion and kindness is to layer these virtues with His Great Love.  Love holds these virtues into place like glue.  When we let Love guide our life, the peace of Christ will rule in our tender hearts. 

So in order to eliminate the terrible duo of fear and loss, how about we work together in being kind and compassionate.  A few ways to promote compassion can be:

  1. Start with Yourself (focus on your strengths and positive qualities first).
  2. Communicate Verbally and Non-verbally (eye contact, body inward, and listen).
  3. Touch (a gentle touch goes a long way.  If appropriate, a hug or shoulder tap).
  4. Encourage Others (positive reinforcement and praise).
  5. Express Yourself (nodding, tears, laughter, and a sincere smile go a long way).
  6. Show Kindness (expecting nothing in return).
  7. Respect Privacy (no gossiping and respect personal space).
  8. Learn How To Advocate (speak up and defend others’ rights).
  9. Volunteer (help in cleanup, babysit, running errands, making phone calls).
  10. Consider your words carefully (think before you speak, empathize, a loving attitude).

Love Holds Compassion and Kindness In Place

Without love, none of this can be accomplished.  God’s kind of love is not a feeling, it’s an action that moves forward.  God’s Great Love is selfless, requiring to love whether we feel like it or not.  Where there’s anger, a sign of love is to show compassion.  Where there is malice, kindness shows the love that exists in our hearts. 

Let Love Guide Our Lives

Let’s start letting love guide our lives.  Laying down one’s life to act as a bridge so another beloved who is filled with fear can walk safely over to the other side is where the love is at.  That’s what Jesus would do and did for us.

Weekly challenge:  Let’s be proactive by getting and staying involved in the needs that are overwhelming other beloveds in our world today where we can step in and help with.  Whether we’re on the east coast or west coast, strong bridges can be built through love.  Whether it’s a small monetary donation, a prayer, a sincere smile, a listening ear, dropping off water and groceries, doing research or even someone who joyfully changes the atmosphere wherever they go by pouring out the Love that only us Beautiful Beloveds can radiate.  Together, one by one, piece by piece, we can make our world beautiful again!

Until next time…

Thank You For Being Beautiful You!

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Is Clamoring For Attention Worth Turning You Into A Zombie?

It’s a Cat Fight and It’s Bloody!

The harvest is plentiful but the workers are few (Matthew 9:37).  If this is the case, why are so many of us Christians turning into zombies ushering us into pathetic cat fights that stampede other beloveds all in the name of competition? 

This competition is ugly and it clouds over the glory of our Lord.  It resembles more of a beat-up, scary soul.

There are so many souls just waiting to give their lives over to the Lord and become part of the body of Christ, but they need joyful and merciful beloveds to guide them. 

Having a zombie-like appearance and/or competitive spirit detracts beloveds from comfortably entering and engaging in a relationship with Jesus Christ.

Where’s the love and joy that welcomes and encourages the radiance of God’s glory?  Are our zombie-like appearances detracting others from engaging in the body of Christ or is it the clamoring for attention that makes others sprint from the church?

I know all too well what it is like to serve until I collapse.  I love people and there’s nothing more that warms my heart than meeting the needs of others, but sometimes it becomes too much and I need to check my motives before burnout develops.

There’s nothing wrong with setting boundaries and alerting others that the demands are robbing us of our joy.  When our service is guilt-driven instead of our cup overflowing with grace, that’s when the Spirit is announcing it’s time that we need refreshment and restoration ourselves.

I know we worry about letting others down, or we will relinquish being perceived as a leader, or that our leaders will turn their backs on us after our sabbatical.  Trust me, there are plenty of organizations needing volunteers where you will be received with great love, acceptance and acknowledgment.

There’s nothing worse when you enter a congregation filled with burned-out leaders that walk around resembling zombies.  Where’s the joy and excitement coming together?  They may look your way; but they look through you, not at you.  They throw out a forced smile and can’t wait until the service is over so they can literally rush out.

Where’s the love that takes the time to engage in a relationship or even remembers your name?

If only we could remember that our position or title does not indicate our worth or value; instead, God will be able to utilize our beautiful selves in changing the atmosphere somewhere else or usher us into a completely new area created just for our unique gifts. 

The Lord mentioned that the harvest is plentiful, but the workers are few, because He was announcing there would ALWAYS BE plenty of positions available.  God’s always hiring!

Are we more interested in the labels and titles that puff up our egos that announce we belong and have power or are the job responsibilities in being a servant too demanding? 

Better yet, as we knock out other beloveds in order to be a part of the pastoral clique, have we once thought about the responsibility and commitment that is needed to undertake and fulfill these highly competitive roles in the church?  Everyone wants to be a part of the leadership in our churches, but they don’t want to do the work.

As a concerned beloved pointed out, “Have you noticed how the church is full of beloveds clamoring for attention in their feat of competition?” 

Beloved, there’s plenty of positions available.  We need to be conscience of the fact that we’re not glorifying our Lord when we’re overwhelmed with commitments and just going through the motion resembling zombies gnashing our teeth rather than the radiant beloveds full of joy and grace.

That’s scary stuff.  Who would want to come inside?  I sure wouldn’t!

Funny thing about climbing the ladder in the church, God has thousands upon thousands of jobs just laying vacant with unlimited perks and great blessings…

No need for a cat fight.  We don’t have to shun or belittle another because we fear they will take our position or push us out of ours… 

There’s a whole world outside of our congregation’s four walls that wants and needs to be loved on.  I’m asking the Lord of the harvest, therefore, to send out workers into His harvest. 

I’m just trying to be a vessel myself that pours much-needed love and encouragement into others’ lives; that’s my gift and something I offer freely.

Ask the Lord of the harvest, therefore, to send out workers into his harvest field (Matthew 9:38).

Let’s stop trampling others.  I don’t know who let the animals out, but maybe we could run our race more victoriously after we undergo a heart transplant before we stampede and take others out. 

Until next time…

Thank You For Being Beautiful You!

 

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When A Mama’s Heart Is Broken

When A Mama’s Heart Is Broken! 

Don’t You Ever Touch My Son!

 

All I can do today besides cry and pray is to blog:  “Don’t you EVER touch my son!” 

And I mean ever…  Ever again…  NEVER!!!  And may I repeat, EVER AGAIN!

When mama ain’t happy, ain’t nobody happy!  And that’s an understatement.  Don’t ever cross paths or get in the way of a mama bear protecting her young.  Only a mother’s love can shield her young.  And that “young” includes grown men, too.  To this mama, he’ll forever be my baby boy. 

My heart is broken and filled with justifiable anger.  Why do people slander others?  You either need Jesus or a job; probably both!

Words from another are maliciously and methodically attacking my child.  Why do people insist on talking about others and acting like gossip is an acceptable thing to do?  If you even knew my son, which you don’t, you would never speak such ill words.

Gossip is destructive and even more powerful than any nuclear war or tsunami could deliver in wiping out a nation much sooner than any national disaster could. 

The words spoken from our mouths reveal our faith!

Precious beloveds, there is already way too much devastation in this world.  People need more love, not hate.  My God, take those torturous daggers and flaming arrows and throw them in the pit of hell.  The fruit of Thy Mouth loudly announces your faith.  Fruit produces L-O-V-E!!! 

Beloved, you are hurting my Lord.  It’s obvious that your heart needs healing.  Please stop justifying non-believers’ opinions as to why they want nothing to do with Christianity!

Gossip hurts.  My son needs support and love, not the lies that are pouring out of your mouth.  Where’s the love?

Why do some Christians believe that gossip is not a sin and totally acceptable and forget that its penalties carry the same as adultery and murder?

I lean heavily on what the Bible says especially when it emphasizes the rarity in sharing what God hates.  Proverbs 6:16-19 says:

There are six things the Lord hates, seven that are detestable to him: haughty eyes, a lying tongue, hands that shed innocent blood, a heart that devises wicked schemes, feet that are quick to rush into evil, a false witness who pours out lies, and a person who stirs up conflict in the community. 

Please write these words on the tablet of your heart because you are fulfilling all but one that God hates through your gossip.  All you’re doing is hurting my Lord and my son who has received enough destructive comments.

You can talk about me all you want because what you think of me does not change who I am, nor what I was called to do, or where my worth and value derive from.  I am loved and a daughter of the King of kings with royal blood running through my veins.  You cannot change that no matter how hard you try.

But… when it’s regarding my sons, this just confirms the fact as to why people want nothing to do with Jesus and those of us who radiate His Great Love.  Stop!  You’re giving my Lord a bad wrap and His Love took enough of a horrific and torturous death for our sins. 

Piss me off, but remember what Jesus said in Matthew 7:21 about walking out our faith:

Not everyone who says to me, “Lord, Lord, will enter the kingdom of heaven, but only he who does the will of my Father who is in heaven.  Many will say to me on that day, Lord, Lord, did we not prophesy in your name, and in your name drive out demons and perform many miracles?  Then I will tell them plainly:

I never knew you.  Away from me, you evildoers!

God does not will hate or gossip.  Quite the contrary!  God wills love!  Maybe you could start utilizing your energy by praying and asking our Lord for His forgiveness and learn from Jesus how you can build up others instead of tearing them down.  Your words are hurtful and full of lies. 

Since you are attacking my child, obviously you have a problem with me because you’re still talking about us.  If I did something to you, let’s talk so you can find peace and quit tarnishing someone who is already dealing with enough tragedy.

I pray you will take that “extra time” that you have and read what the Word actually says.  I am choosing to believe that you just do not know Jesus like you proclaim looking down that rather long nose of yours!

Living out our faith requires humility, patience and being trained up and equipped.  Others will know that we love Jesus and are His disciples simply by our love for one another (John 13:35) while forgiving others for the words that flow from their mouths and actions.  Love does not include back-biting and gossiping and being involved where we have no place, nor belong.  Jesus’ disciples mirror love like He did. 

God gives.  God gave us Jesus as an outpouring of His Love and His beloveds follow His example.  Let’s pour out love into others’ lives.  Being poured out is not taking away or stripping another of their dignity and self-worth.  Words are powerful and should not be used as a weapon.

Until next time…

Thank You For Being Beautiful You!

 

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Threesomes Are Never Okay! Ask Hagar and Sarah!

Blameless Pulling A You

Shame Leaves You Feeling Utterly Alone and Forsaken!

Genesis 16

As the beautiful nurse attempted another I.V., she said, “Hey, you’re a chaplain, right?”  My reply, “Well, once a chaplain, always a chaplain, I guess,” not knowing where she was going. 

As she slammed the needle into my vein, she inquired rather nonchalantly, “It’s okay to give my man a threesome for his birthday, right?”

I nervously laughed and replied, “I know I’m a hard prick, but you almost made me pee my pants.” 

Then nothing but still silence

Can I hear awkward? 

It gets worse.

She wasn’t kidding either!

She continued, “I’m serious.  I mean, he’s my husband and in the old days men had many wives.  I’m kind of bi-curious anyways, so…”

Bi-curious???

I looked both ways, expecting my medical team to come out and scream, “Surprise!  You should have seen your face.”  They didn’t, and she was dead serious. 

God tells us to be ready and know what His Word says in and out of season, but this upset me.  Where’s our moral compass?  I’m trying not to judge here.

All I could do was grumble underneath my breath for God to give me “wisdom.” 

I shared how hard it was on me when my husband had numerous affairs and the damaging effects it had on our marriage and children along with sharing the lasting effects that the threesome related in Genesis 16 delivered. 

Threesomes are never okay.  Besides the obvious reasons, when a man is with another woman, a scornful woman generally retaliates!  You can’t run from the effects; just ask Hagar and Sarah.  It led to shame and feelings of despair for all parties, not to mention the cursing onto future generations!

Sarah’s friends got on the bandwagon by mocking Sarah for having a barren womb that was considered a disgrace in those days and encouraged her to fulfill this void, this “promised” descendant through another woman.  This lure prompted Sarah to take matters into her own hands and forego waiting on God’s timetable.  She reacted by seeking out another woman into her marriage bed.

Who needs friends like that???

As my friends know all too well, I may be wounded and joyful and can relate with the best because of it, but there are times that what flows out from my mouth needs some filtering, and in a girlie kind-of-silly way!  Just don’t let a tall, dark drink of water walk by.  I may be old, but I am far from dead!

Anyhoo…  Truth be told, with the selfish, spoiled brat side that is constantly at war with the loving and gracious side of me, I was at a loss for words.  Shock turned into embarrassment and then I became flustered which led me agitated with my medical team prompting my snap.

Do you get that way?  Please tell me you do.

As of late, with being overdue for my Florida vaycay that seems to constantly be pushed off, it appears I’m having more and more of those days where even the slightest squeak of a mouse sets me off. 

With my mind bouncing and spinning, spending way too much time occupying the wrong hood (bad neighborhood mindset), the exhaustion is setting in and the demands vying for my attention are making me feel more like I need an exorcism performed than the much-needed rest.

Normally I would scream and get on top of a chair when encountering the tiny varmint, but right now since I’m in THAT MOOD, I am ready to get down on my hands and knees and go whisker to whisker with these dirty little rats who appear to be having way too much fun!

Why when we get in a funk, in that lonesome place, where we hide underneath our covers or isolate behind closed doors engaging in our own pity parties, feeling like we’re not good enough or even loved, do we run away from our problems instead of facing them head on all because of Master Guilt and Shame?  We want to be validated, but…

Maybe it’s because we intervene and run ahead of God’s timetable like Sarah and Abraham because we’re such control freaks.  We forget to trust and call out to the One who knows exactly what we’re thinking (scary!) and loves us just the way we are and FORGIVES! 

We have a good, good Father; the One who loves us and promises never to leave or forsake us.  He cherishes us, even gets jealous for us as He chases us down just to pour love into our depleted and dry bones.  He understands our mistakes and needy minds that are in search of the Living One who sees us. 

Wanting a threesome is similar to what Hagar and Sarah did.  After the fact, their void and rushing ahead of God’s timetable turned into being ashamed, despised and rejected due to their actions while they both pointed the finger at others for the subsequent repercussions. 

Hagar ran away and hid while partaking in a pity party.  But God saw her and her pain and He received her.  The desperation in being a substitute wife; talk about shame!

We all run ahead and give up on God’s timetable from time to time when it doesn’t appear He is working or fast enough or when life seems dull.

If you think giving your husband over to another woman to conceive an heir is going to tap into God’s promises while proving your girlfriends wrong, you need a couple of Xanax and a couple of beers partying with the mice! 

Sarah strikes out and blames Abraham for succumbing to peer pressure and the subsequent mess instead of humbly accepting her involvement in prompting this mess.  She even proclaims, “You are responsible for the wrong I am suffering.  I put my servant in your arms, and now that she knows she is pregnant, she despises me” (Genesis 16:5). 

Until next time…

Thank You For Being Beautiful You!

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There’s No Place Like Home! Heavy-Hearted Days

Blameless No Place Like Home

There’s No Place Like Home!

Heavy-Hearted Days

1 Peter 1:6-9

“In all this you greatly rejoice, though now for a little while you may have had to suffer grief in all kinds of trials.  These have come so that the proven genuineness of your faith—of greater worth than gold, which perishes even though refined by fire—may result in praise, glory and honor when Jesus Christ is revealed.

Though you have not seen Him, you love Him; and even though you do not see Him now, you believe in Him and are filled with an inexpressible and glorious joy, for you are receiving the end result of your faith, the salvation of your souls.”

 God Bless Texas!

There’s no place like home…  There’s no place like home… 

No matter how hard or how many times you click your heels (or cowboy boots), that yellow brick road will lead you home.  It won’t happen fast enough, nor be quite like the one you’ve had to flee from (I’m so sorry), but your journey filled with faith will lead you home.

Tears flow uncontrollably as I sit back and ponder a life well-weathered.  As I try to separate myself from the tragedies of the storm-ravaged Texas, the amazing Houstonians remind me of the great hope and faith this California girl fell in love with and what the Texan community offers.  Especially in tragedy!

We have to applaud the compassionate pursuit of the beloveds coming together rescuing one another during their own tragedy filled with shock and dismay.  Their lookout on the flooded horizon promises only what the Lord could deliver; that they may have power, together with all the Lord’s holy people, to grasp how wide and long and high and deep is the love of Christ (Ephesians 3:18).

Where’s The Love? 

The Houston Way!

These people have lost everything.  Yet their focus relies on the journey, not “what was.”  They may be rescued from the flooding waters overcoming their homes, but this flooding only directs them to a place of unknowns filled with temporary provisions requiring possibly sleeping on cement floors alongside of total strangers where food and water is scarce.  This emulates homelessness, doesn’t it, lacking expected provision?

Yet their testimony and attitude embodies gratitude and grace that we all can learn from and mirror.  They don’t complain about the slim provision or carry anger filled with resentful hearts.  They are grateful for the moment and the safety of refuge.  They have no idea where they’re being led.  They just know they have to trust the leading from those who are being utilized as God’s hands and feet. 

And with alligators and snakes seeking refuge right alongside of them, we have to applaud and praise God for those masquerading angels that are aiding in the relief efforts as the flooding continues.  But will hysteria develop as shelters become overwhelmed with maximum capacity and limited resources leaving them scrambling?

Blameless Alligator

God is our refuge and strength, a very present help in trouble.  Therefore we will not fear (Psalm 46:1). 

Fear…  Fear is a torturing juggling act!  To not fear is especially hard to remember when we’re suffering under cataclysmic conditions with no time to process along with not knowing what tomorrow offers.  When tragedy strikes and you lose your home, your valuables, your vehicle, your job, your connections, your normal mundane schedule, not to mention how you’re going to feed and care for your children and pets, and losing your life-line phone charger (hello!), the emotional storm capsizes the very vehicle of protection in the middle of this raging sea.

I have walked through these fears of the unknown with living in a temporary shelter for protection along with my children and let me share, it is HELL!  While you are still processing the shock, you are grateful for the roof over your head, but being sandwiched between the protection from the elements and the people leading the way that YOU DO NOT KNOW or TRUST, leaves little room for sweetness in-between wading through great loss.

Between the lack of privacy, personal space, co-ed restrooms, much less the freedom to shower to purge the remnants of evacuation, humidity, lack of running water, let alone essential feminine hygiene products that are usually at our disposal, strips away each and every layer of pride head-on. 

Being thrust into having to trust and rely on others with the same heart and motives that we do requires total faith and commitment that will usher and protect us during the unknown.  It’s imperative that we walk by faith and not by sight, but how do we trust God with all our Blameless Giantshearts and souls during a time that we are forced to face these scary giants in our lives?

Will we believe these giants are blessings reaching down from heaven or will our exhausted and wrecked hearts believe they’re the enemy coming solely to steal, kill and destroy? 

These beloveds right now are praising God because they’re being rescued from their flooded homes.  They rejoice because they have been reunited with their families.  They don’t know where they’re going to go next, nor do they know how they’re going to find the provision to get them to their respective jobs or where they’re going to be living next week.  Now, that’s a faithful servant requiring great faith.

We would bode well to pray and honor these beloveds through donations of any size to those who have lost everything.  They’re living out their lives during this tragedy with the whole world watching them.  They deserve support and encouragement.  These beloveds are testifying to what trials filled with desperation, extreme loss, faith and unity delivers:  V-I-C-T-O-R-Y!

When our lives and provision feel hopeless and depleted, feeling they’re falling apart, even though it’s easier said than done, we need to remember that our lives are falling into place somehow and some way.

Until next time…

Thank You For Being Beautiful You!

Blameless Beautiful You

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Faith vs. Fear? Faith The Fear!

blameless-jail-3

Faith vs. Fear?

Faith the Fear!

“The first time I was brought before the judge, no one came with me.  Everyone abandoned me.  May it not be counted against them.  But the Lord stood with me and gave me strength…”  2 Timothy 4:16-17 NLT

 

Inmates!  When you think of this infamous title, what comes to mind?  Losers?  Prisoners?  Convicts?  Rejects deserving punishment? 

Better yet, what comes to mind when you hear of excessive force being used by correctional officers along with inmates’ Constitutional rights being violated? 

Who cares?  Hmmmm…

Anyone that knows me or has been following my blog for even a little while knows about my 110% complete devotion and support for ALL of our men and women in blue who have taken an oath and who selflessly sacrifice their lives to help protect and serve their communities. 

Okay, most of them anyways…  There’s always going to be a rotten apple in the barrel that infects and spoils the good ones.  Enough said!  I was married to a dirty cop so I know how that story goes…

That one bad apple didn’t stop me from going through the law enforcement chaplaincy academy after the fact and even serving as a chaplain for the past seven years, nor did being a victim of heinous crimes myself hinder my advocacy work and passion for the rejected and unloved. 

But when a beloved son finds himself in mayhem, I became sandwiched between our justice system and this corrupted force by witnessing firsthand violation after violation causing pain and turmoil to this mama’s child and others by the COs (correctional officers) not following the laws and the rules demanded by our U.S. Constitution.

Where’s the love in this world anymore?  We have become bullies hiding behind the power given to us through lack of governance, social media and our computer screens.  We have become fixated and thrive on corruption and crime and “colluding” and even become energized by real-life drama.  Talk about egotistical people without a moral compass.

When our three-year-olds are more familiar with the word “collude” instead of “loved,” we need to take a step back and examine how we are allowing the actions of others to influence our lives.  This includes how we utilize social media to peek, watch, stalk, gossip and even “date others” which is nothing more hazardous than to one’s “selfie.”

What happened to the meeting of minds face to face and loving our neighbors as ourselves?  Would you protect yourself by letting another brother be blamed for the fall?  If a child was getting hurt, would you intervene to protect them or would you click Facebook first and turn your video on and record instead of protecting them?

Every person is a child to some mother or father, so…  

What if this person was sitting in county jail awaiting trial; considered innocent until proven guilty, right?  Here he’s hurt, harassed, hazed, and even refused his Constitutional rights.  He’s put into a cell with another human’s feces on the walls.

Would you just ignore the inhumane discrimination because inmates are considered “losers” in jail or would you stand up for their rights and scream awareness against those who are abusing and usurping their authoritative powers?

This is frightening to come up against, but my God commands we work for justice.  Just because someone is in jail does not mean they’re dehumanized or any less of a Beloved.  God loves us all just the way we are, mistakes and all. 

These inmates have to do the time for their crimes, but between overcrowding, inhumane conditions, and being subjected to excessive force violates their Constitutional rights and it must be stopped.

What happens when you find yourself in the middle of Corruption versus Dedication?  Justice versus Usurping Authority?  Commitment versus Constitution?  Innocence versus Injustice?  Faith versus Fear?

I want to preface that I still stand behind law enforcement knowing full well there’s plenty of rotten apples, but when you find yourself having to go against some of those you once believed in and supported, the betrayal leaves you mad as hell with a passionate pursuit to end all this physical, emotional and spiritual harm. 

I had no idea advocacy meant I would find myself right smack in the middle of an exposed corruption ring within our correctional facilities through excessive force and inhumane conditions while a beloved child was at the core of just a minuscule part of it.

Between healing from surgery and going through further treatment alongside of this corruption case, writing is going to be sporadic and take a backseat as I fulfill my duties being a mom and an inmate advocate and making sure justice prevails.  There’s a mama’s heart that would love to react with my cast-iron horns fully emerged while spewing out flaming arrows, but…

I don’t know what emulating my Lord looks like exactly because each day there’s a new violation and I haven’t always reacted in a positive, loving manner with the COs with all of these emotions.  When your child is under the umbrella of abuse and injustice and his Constitutional rights have been violated again and again, you better believe I’m going to Faith the Fear boldly and courageously!  And I do not care WHO YOU ARE!

I am choosing to love my son mirroring the words penned from Paul in 2 Timothy 4:16-17.  I want him to feel the love of the Lord alongside of him through support, encouragement, visitation, phone calls, unconditional love and especially being an advocate demanding his due rights so he knows he’s not alone. 

Someone has to stand up for these inmates.  The system is slow and corrupt and families and friends dwindle away real quick.

I firmly believe hope replaces discouragement while trust overcomes doubt because my God is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to His power that is at work within us (Ephesians 3:20).  That’s being His hands and feet!

Until next time…

Thank You For Being Beautiful You!

Blameless Beautiful You Bouquet 2

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Two Are Better Than One… Tammy Tangent Tuesdays

Blameless True Friends 1

Two are better than One,

because they have a good return for their work:
If one falls down,
    his friend can help him up.
But pity the man who falls
    and has no one to help him u
p!

Ecclesiastes 4:9-10

Tammy Tangent Tuesdays

Hello Beautiful!  I hope you are having an amazing week realizing just how beautiful you are.  I pray you were able to rest in God’s grace and be cleansed by His lathering of love.  It’s amazing what refreshment does to a parched soul.  Living in peace blossoms the true beauty within.  It’s that time again, it’s Tammy Tangent Tuesdays!

God designed our lives for companionship, the need for others, not living in isolation and going at it alone.  Loneliness was never a part of God’s orchestration, instead He created the beauty found in intimacy with Him and one another.  We need each other!  Let’s challenge ourselves this week to be a true friend with childlike intentions.  Let’s share Blameless Blossoms True Beauty Withinour story with another Beloved the struggles we are feeling through the lens of Truth and Trust as we embrace this gift in what vulnerability offers while being raw and candid.  The healing that will come from this transparency will be liberating, but it will also bond you to the one you’re sharing with.

One thing I have learned by allowing my life to be completely exposed (and I’m talking about being totally naked here with nowhere to hide) through the transparency, rawness and complete vulnerability is we all struggle with insecurities, feelings of shame, defeat, fear, anxiety, depression, you name it!  We’re all imperfect beings living in an imperfect world so why hide behind our struggles of imperfections that are intended to help us grow and become even more radiant!  When we share our lives with another Beloved, it offers peace knowing someone else is shouldering the pain.  This is how God turns our ashes into beauty.  Living in peace blossoms the true beauty within!

When we open up our lives by sharing areas of weakness that are uncomfortable for us to talk about, it paves the way for God to bring healing and support needed to battle and conquer our darkness.  We are also blessing the other person we’re sharing with because if we are opening up our hearts, that expresses to the other person that they’re loved and worthy of trust.  When we share our lives and struggles with one another, it not only unlocks our fears and the suppressed pain, but it gives God the room to bring healing to that area we didn’t want touched, much less exposed. 

We need community and we need each other; that’s how God designed us.  Sharing our stories offers intimacy and it opens the window to see clearly through the lens of how God intended true friendships to be.  No matter how old we are, there is still a little girl residing within our tender hearts who wants to love and be loved and play.  

Seeing through the lens of a True Friend is acknowledging the need for others.  In fact, a true friend is someone who sees the pain in your eyes while others believe the smile you’re wearing!  Blameless True Friends 1This requires sharing the good, the bad and the ugly.  You’ll be blessing that other person by sharing your struggles because they’re probably going through similar trials themselves.  Trust is a treasure chest filled with golden nuggets. 

This is the beauty found in connections.  Sharing leads to trust.  Trust leads to healing.  Healing then brings peace and beauty out of the ashes.  True friends make our good days better, but they also offer strength to make the hard times lighter and easier through their love and support.  We just have to reach out and Be-Loved!

We all have hundreds of acquaintance-type friends between social media and through our own channels of networking.  We also have friends that have been in our lives for years, yet for whatever reason, the friendship remains on the superficial side without vulnerability because of past betrayal or through gossip and hurts.  Let’s embrace our friendships or even cultivate new ones enjoying the benefits of being a true friend first so we can get to a new level of deeper understanding and intimacy together.

After all, Ecclesiastes 4:9-10 reminds us: 

Two are better than one,
    because they have a good return for their work:
If one falls down,
    his friend can help him up.
But pity the man who falls
    and has no one to help him up!

Weekly Challenge:  Challenge yourself this week to reach out and share your story with a friend or a new friend and watch the bond of that transparency and vulnerability remove the veil of shame that you’ve been hiding behind.  When we share our hurts, others will share theirs as well.  There’s nothing in our lives worthy of shame to hide behind.  We have been redeemed and we are Beautiful Beloveds, royal heiresses to the kingdom of God.  Let’s claim what freedom being the real beautiful “us” offers.

There is no shame in our game; Jesus is His name! 

Until next time…

Thank You For Being Beautiful You!

Blameless Basketful of Flowers 1

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When You Have Been Abused, Abandoned and Rejected, What Is Next? Part 3

Blameless Live Laugh Love 1.1

When You Have Been Abused, Abandoned and Rejected, What Is Next?

Part 3

Be imitators of God, as dearly loved children and live a life of love.   Ephesians 5:1-2 ~ Live, Laugh, Love

Today was the day I decided to take complete power back and away from my abusers by talking about it.  They no longer rule or have any power through their threats of shame over my heart.  I was hoping that the love found through healthy communication mirroring 1 Corinthians 13:4-13 in being patient and kind, keeping no record of wrongs while not being easily angered, would bring some sort of fresh resolution or even repentance through changed behavior, but…

Someone has to stop generational strongholds of abuse in order to bring justice.  That requires awareness of behaviors and COMMUNICATION as we faith the fear.  Investing precious time into our relationships not only shows love, but it also revives honor. 

This is why I love running to my Bible for guidance because I need calm over chaos.  I refuse to exist in that world anymore.  I want to be more like my loving Savior so I can learn to love better and forgive easier.  Ephesians 5:1-2 tells us to be imitators of God, as dearly loved children and live a life of love.  I choose to live this way the best I can because Love sees through the lens of Truth!  I choose to live, laugh and love much while others live in rage and bitterness.

Being imitators of God that Ephesians 4:29-32 states is hard.  It means to try not letting any unwholesome talk come out of our mouths (especially when we’re upset), but only what is helpful for building others up according to their needs, that it may benefit those who listen…Get rid of all bitterness, rage and anger, brawling and slander, along with every form of malice.  Be kind and compassionate to one another, forgiving each other, just as in Christ God forgave you.

Discounting a person’s voice is not only disrespectful, but where’s the love in that? 

Communication takes at least two voices, right?  Well, unless you’re living in the wounded warrior world, that world-of-one torment that engages in battle with thyself and rips your opponent apart in your mind and exhausts you like any real battle would!  All that does is exposes our hearts by holding us captive inBlameless Bee Kind 1 our cells of hell filled with nothing but rage and bitterness.  No wonder we’re angry people.  It also prohibits us from being present because we’re always present in the wrong neighborhood.

I’ll share an excerpt of what my last wounded warrior world was like next time!  It’s sad, but we also have to laugh at times at how we destroy ourselves and waste valuable energy.  Here the honey bees with the stingers say, “If we’re going to die, we’re taking you down with us.”  Who needs the enemy’s affliction; we destroy ourselves by cultivating the hurt that is brewing inside our hearts.  We need to be kind to ourselves.

My speaking coach/mentor challenged me to narrow my writing and speaking skills towards the passion that ignites me to work tirelessly starting up my nonprofit organization, Blameless and Forever Free Ministries.  My heart’s desire and hope is to help meet the needs of those who are hurting by building a bridge between church and state for the oppressed.

Being a survivor myself saved by nothing short of grace after decades of torment, it took me awhile to understand why I have such a gift of love for all beloveds and why forgiveness comes easily.  When you have been hurt much and forgiven much by Love Himself, it makes it easy to pour love into others and situations that need a covering of peace and inspiration.  Plus, I don’t want anyone to suffer all alone because all lives matter!

I have watched far too many Beloveds try and go at it alone and all they are doing by being shackled to shame and guilt is refusing the power that is available to them:  Freedom!  God Blameless Freedom Found in Exposuredid not design us for isolation to hide when we’re embarrassed and humiliated, He designed us to need others and to be seen.  We need the power of our friends’ strength to encourage us to the finish line.  There is no shame in our game; Jesus is His name!

With this recent heartache of rejection and my failed attempts at reconciliation, the stinger was easily removed because I didn’t hide in isolation from this “supposed shame” being rejected and unloved; therefore, its infection was thwarted in spreading.  I knew I was loved by God and I needed the help of others to process sharing my heart or depression would have sunk in.  This vulnerability of exposure removed the stinger before it did more damage.  I bounced back rather quickly because my faith radiated who God says I am, along with walking alongside of girlfriends who helped open my eyes to see through the lens of Truth. 

Friendships pull stingers out and bring healing to the sting before its infection spreads through love and support.

I don’t know about you, but I can spend way too much energy judging myself more critically and harsher than any abuser while believing the lies of the enemy.  If only we could remember to spend our energy being the radiance of His Perfect Love!  God does promise us His blessings, but many of these gifts require our active obedience and participation.

This is where God unveils His destiny in bringing beauty from my ashes through His purpose and plan for my pain.  Now I get to love on others who are considered unlovable.  I get to be a voice for those who lost theirs through abuse and abandonment.  And now I’m honored to walk alongside of the masses who are walking through disease and death because I’ve walked victoriously through it myself.

Tasting and seeing the Lord is an invitation to experience the gift of His grace.  “I sought the Lord, and He answered me; He delivered me from all my fears.  Those who look to Him are radiant; their faces are never covered with shame” (Psalm 34:4-5).  Today I’m living in freedom and flying free of yesterday’s guilt, today’s fears, and tomorrow’s grave.  All because God loves me just the way I am.

There’s something about freedom…  The purity of the innocence in letting go and yet the boldness in knowing your life matters!  We all want to know our lives matter.

Until next time..

Thank You For Being Beautiful You!

Blameless Freedom 2

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I Need A Bath! Tammy Tangent Tuesdays

Blameless My Peace I Leave With You

I Need A Bath!

Tammy Tangent Tuesdays

Hello Beautiful!  I pray you’ve been having a blessed week filled with strength to keep pressing in along with a huge supply of patience sojourning this side of heaven.  It’s that time again; it’s Tammy Tangent Tuesdays!

I don’t know about you, but I’m filthy and stained!  I need daily cleansing.  I’m not as white as snow as I’d like to be.  I’ve been wallowing through the muck and yuck of mundane tasks on top of demanding peeps.  I need the purifying cleansing that only being bathed in God’s peace can accomplish! 

When we rest in His grace and are cleansed by His living waters, God bestows His Love that lathers up and washes away the filth that is clouding our lenses and keeping us in the wrong neighborhood (mindset).  Those little irritants can add up quickly when we allow them to brew inside our hearts.  It’s amazing how easy it is to become bitter and impatient, snapping on those who dare come within a few feet of us.

Bathing In His Love

God wants us to bathe in His peace as He lathers us with His Great Love, His grace and His tender mercies.  We would bode well if we made it a part of our daily regimen, bathing in His soothing waters of life and peace through prayer and time spent in His Word.  God wants to give us the simple pleasures of life, like bath time. 

Light a few candles and immerse yourself into how faithful God has been bringing you through the day or through the tough month.  Immerse yourself into these purifying waters and take a deep breath and reflect.  This is probably one of the hardest areas for us busy women to accomplish, but it’s so worth the discipline. 

One of the fruits of the spirit is self-control (Galatians 5:22-23).  This governs our decisions and lifestyle choices and attitudes.  This radiance is where we witness the changes in our character that emulate more of the life of Christ.  Rest is a weapon God uses to bless us with.

Blameless Bathtub

We can never forget that Rest is a weapon God blesses us with.  After all, even God rested after the sixth day of work.  The enemy hates when we rest because he wants us stressed out and preoccupied!

God was up to something unique when He added the element of rest to our lives.  If the Lord God Almighty rested on the seventh day (Genesis 2:2-3), that means His Beloveds need rest for restoration and reunification.  How else can we get refilled?  Goditude mindsets take discipline.  After all, we need solitude time to be still and snuggle in close to the Lord.  We can’t let ourselves feel guilty when we take our own time out!  There’s comfort found here, even Jesus took time out for solitude (Mark 1:35). 

This is why I love Ephesians 1:4, it reminds us of what God foreknew, For He chose us in Him before the creation of the world to be holy and blameless in His sight.  In love…”  There’s no way being holy and blameless can be accomplished when we’re overwhelmed and stressed out.

Needs are endless with the pulling and tugging on our time and hearts.  I am trying to be a Beloved that understands this need to practice the discipline of solitude.  Bathtubs help Beloveds push pause, so let’s take a bubble bath and get cleansed so the filth of our days and our exhausting journeys won’t rub off onto others! 

If we’re going to be radiant in a dirty and polluted world, we need self-control to be still and allow our minds to be renewed so we can walk in love.  As St. Augustine said, Love grows within us…“for love is the beauty of the soul.”

“Since love grows within you, so beauty grows.  For love is the beauty of the soul.”  St. Augustine

Weekly Challenge:  The Lord wants His Beloveds radiant.  Let’s make a lifetime discipline choice this week to allow ourselves 10, 15 minutes each day to become one with the Spirit in order to quiet our minds while washing away the filth of each day.  This will empower us with the ability to think His thoughts. 

Lord, we enter your presence with thanksgiving and praise.  We love you, Lord.  For your Love is good and endures forever.  We pray that you would refresh our bodies as you renew our strength.  As Beloveds, we yearn and crave to be restored.  We desire to be more like you and we thank you for the transformation taking place as You renew our minds.  Thank you for this quiet time of reflection as you awaken us to our need to be at rest while we’re still working this side of heaven.

Until next time…

Thank You For Being Beautiful You!

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When You Have Been Abused, Abandoned and Rejected, What Is Next? Part 2

Blameless New Beginnings 1.1

When You Have Been Abused, Abandoned and Rejected, What Is Next? 

Part 2

Violence, pain and suffering is predominant in the world today.  Why do children hate their parents?  Why do parents slaughter, use as weapons of mass destruction, or even sell and reject their own children?  How do wars between brother against brother and sister against sister ignite?  Where’s the love?

Hurt People Hurt Others

Jesus came to redeem our hurts, our lives, our families, by and through His blood which cost God so much.  I don’t know about you, but I’m in need of His daily transfusion of blood to cleanse my own soul and wash away my sins.

Needed:  Daily Blood Transfusions

Sadly, the world is full of sick, evil and hurt people whose hurts have never been worked through along with mental illness that has been swept underneath the rug for generations.  Instead of being diagnosed and treated, it has advanced into a full-fledged epidemic.  It’s tragic because there is no shame in having mental illness.  Anxiety, depression, addiction and eating disorders and rage are prevalent because they have been shamed for far too long.  This world may demand perfection, but as I say in my advocacy:

There is no shame in our game; Jesus is His name!

Being vulnerable where deep hurts are involved is more than uncomfortable, but I know there are many Beloveds who need to hear how God’s amazing grace sustained me so they can lean in and press through themselves.  It is hard when the world beats down on you Blameless Crown Tiarra 7making you feel insignificant and irrelevant, and you don’t know where to turn or even if you’re important enough to be seen or matter.  We all want to know we’re enough.

We can’t claim victory when we’re weaponless, have dull blades on our swords, so exhausted we can’t even see or think straight, not to mention when we’re starving and freezing cold.  This is where we get the option to either believe the lies of the enemy or allow God to pour out His Love into our depleted souls by tenderly affirming us.  The way He reaches down and coddles and comforts us next to His beating heart reassures us of our meaningful existence and His Great Love that is found in the beautiful pages of scripture.  I can’t advocate enough for the strength and peace received through peeling the pages of the Bible wide open.  Life literally pours out and ushers you into a relationship that offers freedom and acceptance!

When we’re wounded, even the slightest hiss will send us hiding!

God wants to wrap His everlasting arms around us tight until we slowly release our grip as we become aware and realize how loved and valued we are.  We are so cherished, God pursues our lives.  Us girls love to be pursued, don’t we?  I know I do!  He even serenades over us as He rejoices over our existence (Zephaniah 3:17).  I don’t know about you, but I have never been serenaded so the realization of this warms my tender heart and soul.

God designed us to need and be receptive to this kind of Great Love so we can realize where our worth and value derive from.  His Love is that good, fulfilling and rewarding.  And it never ceases.  There’s nothing we can do to lose His Love either.  For us Beloveds who have been rejected and abandoned, that is nourishment to feast on for our depleted souls. 

Seeing ourselves from God’s perspective opens the pathway of our hearts and knocks down the barriers of pride that hinders our confidence.  This way we don’t have to stay hidden, humiliated and ashamed because we were rejected, in our protective shells.  We can stand tall, with feet fitted firmly in the ground, knowing our worth and value.

This is why I constantly share why I go to the Bible first when in distress.  The Word is alive and active.  When I’ve been attacked, forsaken and rejected, thrown out as discarded leftovers, my heart is shattered.  I need guidance, grace, and reassuring tender mercies of love and worth thatBlameless Hebrews 4.12 (2) will help remind me and give clarity to who God says I am.  That is why the Bible is so powerful.

We can’t lose sight of the fact that hurt people hurt others.  Victims of heinous behaviors would be repeating the same thing to others if we didn’t have this loving and powerful Word of God to equip us with the ability to withstand the flaming arrows of the enemy along with the ability to forgive.  This allows us to reach out with compassion to others.  We need to share our testimonies of strength and deliverance.  Hebrews 4:12-13 clears up any miscommunication about the benefits of the Bible:  “For the Word of God is living and active.  Sharper than any double-edged sword, it penetrates even to dividing soul and spirit, joints and marrow; it judges the thoughts and attitudes of the heart.  Nothing in all creation is hidden from God’s sight.  Everything is uncovered and laid bare before the eyes of Him to whom we must give account.”

Beautiful Beloved, being victims of another person’s pain confuses what true, healthy love and behaviors are.  Our worth and value comes from the Lord God Almighty, not anyone else!  This will help us understand why many of us feel unloved and unwanted.  We will do just about everything and anything to fulfill that void.  When others fail to meet our expectations and afflict pain onto our already tattered and fragile lives, we often look outside of ourselves for this very reason. 

God created us with unique qualities that NO ONE BESIDES US has, and without that quality, there would be no beauty in the bunch!  Please do not allow anyone to rob you of your gifts, beauty and talents.  The world needs you!

Until next time…

Thank You For Being Beautiful You!

Blameless Live Laugh Love 1.1

 

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When You Have Been Abused, Abandoned and Rejected, What Is Next?

Blameless Getting Away 1

When You Have Been Abused, Abandoned and Rejected, What Is Next?

Part 1

I’ve been abused, abandoned and rejected.  Now what?  What does that say about me when others treat me as rubbish and waste?  We only discard filth, so does that mean I’m not worthy to be loved, honored and cherished?  Who discards their child with contempt anyways? 

Disclaimer:  This blog series for the next couple months may trigger some Beloveds that have been a victim of abuse.  Abuse and rejection are hard areas to heal.

Who wants to vocalize and admit they’re a victim of abuse, abandonment and rejection?   Not me, but it’s something we need to talk about and share with one another, so…

We all desire to be loved, accepted and belong.  I am no exception.  Admitting I was thrown out as waste and unwanted droppings automatically labeled me as a reject, unwanted, refused, loser, no value, screwed up, refund demanded!  What does that say Blameless Clearance Rack 3about me as a Beloved, my worth and value, and every decision I would make subsequently thereafter? 

When you’re not wanted and abandoned, that rejection tears right through your heart, mind, body and soul.  Plus, you don’t know how to love or be loved; instead you become one whom must perform to others’ expectations in order to be loved.  WRONG!

I’m glad I’m a Beloved who chases after my Lord, even though He never leaves our side.  Otherwise, I truly don’t know how I would have walked through such a lonely, hopeless and heartbreaking journey, much less become the bold and courageous Beloved I am today.  God turned my ashes into beauty.  I know I’m God’s treasured daughter who was once found at the bottom of the dump, but God meticulously cleaned me up and now I’m crowned skipping merrily in freedom, confidence and wholeness.  What a beautiful assurance of His Great Love.  That’s called a beautiful exchange!

As the torturing fire of acknowledgement burns the pit of my stomach as I write, my mouth regurgitates “I’ve been rejected, AGAIN!”  The reality of such an abominable tragedy to any child is overwhelming, but the power from the eruption of St. Tammy’s Emotions exposes an even deeper level of loss and insecurities.

I am so grateful the Lord didn’t consider me scraps that are thrown out to the pigs.  Instead He chooses to love, cherish and relentlessly pursue me so much that He even extended His loving arms down from heaven to protect me when I drove myself off that cliff 37 years ago and redeemed my life with His Great Love.

God doesn’t kick His children to the curb or throw them away like a piece of deplorable regret.  In fact, He calls His children His masterpieces and works of art!  His Love never ceases and He will never forsake us either.  There’s nothing we can do to lose that Love.

When We’re Considered A Piece of Deplorable Regret!

I am not the only person who’s been rejected and abused, much less abandoned.  My heart genuinely grieves for the Beloveds that have been violently tormented.  My teeth grit just thinking about the unconscionable behavior of others.  It’s hell that no one could even begin to understand unless you’ve walked through the valley of the shadow of death yourself. 

Emotional trauma caused by those who profess to love you is the hardest journey to walk through victoriously.  It can cause other mental health issues such as depression, addiction, eating disorders, you name it, just to escape and numb the pain that afflicts the heart and mind.  I know, alcohol makes a great numbing agent, or did!

This is really hard for me to talk about.  Dealing with the tragedies of life and facing it head on is something that is outside of my comfort zone without Mr. Denial, but…

When one is discarded like rubbish, though, this torment leaves a permanent marking from the scorching cauterization of the branding iron.  This imprint of “rejected” forever tarnishes one’s worth and value tragically and effects behaviors regarding life, love and choices and decisions.  Even effects our relationship with God.

God is a God of love and mercy, compassionate and gracious, slow to anger, abounding in love (Psalm 103:8) who never leaves our side.  I’ve been healed by the touch of God and now I understand why I passionately want to help the unlovable because all lives matter and deserve to be loved. 

One thing is absolutely certain besides my tangent:  No one is unlovable and removed from the touch of God!

My bestie lovingly reminded me of the worse offenders to help soothe the sting of my abuser’s manic explosion.  She shared, “Some moms sell their children as sex slaves for rent money and to satisfy their own drug fix.”

We are not the labels our offenders branded us with!

The greatest gift God gives us is family and friendships.  If we’ve been orphaned, God brings us friendships to fill those vacancies and walk alongside of us being the hands and feet of God, along with offering their precious hearts and time.  The love, hope and affirmations we receive from our relationships cultivate our beauty to bloom right where we’re planted.  That’s how we thrive and not just survive.  Investing precious time into our relationships not only shows love, but it also revives honor.

Because we are loved immeasurably more than we could ever imagine, the torturous time feeling invisible and insignificant, you know, overlooked because we are tossed out with the rest of the trash, God sees us.  He not only sees us, He is even proud to be seen with us and calls us the apple of His eye (Zechariah 2:8).  Blameless Crown Tiarra 7To know we are His prized possession and treasured Beloveds should empower us to walk bravely and take risks with confidence knowing He will never leave us. 

When only Love could make a way, being immersed in God’s mercy and love creates a wholeness and contentment of heart.  Knowing we are called His treasured daughters enables us to forgive our offenders.  People are full of pain and pride and sickness.  Shame cripples and shackles.  It’s a powerful membrane.  But we don’t have to stay entangled in the Black Widow’s web of destruction.

Honestly, even though I am at a great place in my life spiritually, professionally and emotionally, admitting that I’m orphaned and not wanted is a hard pill to swallow.  It’s hard to admit that.  It does leave a sense of loss to my heart, but I’ll allow this pain to help others.

Until next time…

Thank You For Being Beautiful You!

Blameless New Beginnings 1.1

 

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You Don’t Have To Change A Thing, You Are Beautiful Just The Way You Are! The World Needs What Only You Can Offer!

Blameless Different Culture of Women Final

You Don’t Have To Change A Thing,

You Are Beautiful Just The Way You Are!

The World Needs What Only You Can Offer!

Sitting amongst a loud and crowded restaurant, it was hard not to overhear the many conversations blaring from the lively group of young adult beauties.  Between the excitement of the 4th of July festivities to their summertime travels, one thing was apparent:  They spent more time comparing and competing and criticizing than celebrating the beautiful beloveds they all were.

What is it about us beloveds spending time engaged in conversations that are filled with comparisons, criticism and competition instead of celebrating each other and our lives?  Why can’t we just be, imperfections and all, instead of the superficial boasting of lies?

Being honest here, I am older and wiser being Grammy Tammy, but due to my own battle scars and stitches and imperfections, I was feeling a bit envious myself because I no longer possessed that youthful appearance equipped with perfect skin and a sculpted body; but I only wonder how most Beloveds feel once they get home and process all those destructive comments spewed out through jealousy, comparison and competition?

To Everyone Wishing They Were Someone Else,

We Need You To Be Your Beautiful and Unique Self!

We all want to be seen and heard!  I get that.  We all want to believe that we’re loved and valued.  And we are!  But why do we label others that are different than us?  Why do we size each other up before we even get to know what’s below the superficial facade?  There’s beauty underneath all these differences and scars.

I spent years wasting my own youthful beauty instead of enjoying it by creating this ditzy-blonde alter ego because my intelligence intimated most men coupled with the physical beauty I possessed at the time.  The girls hated me and the boys were afraid of me!  Talk about stepping stones leading to strongholds of insecurities and destruction of any self-worth and value. 

But to defame my God-given gift of intelligence just to fit in and be accepted is similar to what many Beloveds are doing nowadays with hiding behind their perceived imperfections in being different because of the color of their skin, the size of their bodies, and the differing cultures and attitudes similar to the competition and demands dictated by society leading to all these cosmetic surgeries.

My body back then had to be rail thin; in fact, at my old height of 5’11”, I weighed in at 135 pounds, wore a size 3, and I was considered three pounds overweight for my modeling.  Talk about creating a body image struggle at its finest hour.  God forbid to be caught dead in a bikini three pounds overweight at a size 3?  We have been taught to be something we’re not instead of embracing who God designed us to be and the beauty that lies and radiates within.  Look at all the joy and fun we are missing because of this mindset.

Who determines what beautiful is anyways?  Is it a Victoria Secret model with stunning long legs and a sculpted face like Gigi Hadid?  How about a humanitarianism beauty likeBlameless Walls Beautiful Definition Angelina Jolie?  Better yet, how about the beautiful Duchess of Cambridge, Kate Middleton herself, the royal princess loved by all? 

My definition of beautiful is that being beautiful has nothing to do with looks.  It’s how you are as a person and how you make others feel about themselves.  I call and identify all Beloveds I encounter as Beautiful.  Just ask any of my friends, doctors and associates.  Those are spoken words worth repeating because they’re truthful and they build up!

We have to stop the labeling.  We have to stop the comparing.  We have to stop being somebody we were not designed and created to be.  We all have imperfections.  We cannot continue to tear down one another.  We all are uniquely designed with qualities that only WE HAVE!  God designed us to be the only person with our unique qualities.  Now that’s something to embrace and celebrate and be confident about!

How about we start celebrating a new nation this Independence Day determining to believe and behave that all lives matter, realizing our need for each other, to learn values and attributes that the other person can teach, to enjoy the qualities and gifts that others offer, and to celebrate the life and beauty of each Beautiful Beloved.  God designed us all differently for a reason.  Without each other, there is no beauty in the bunch.   

When I was the “perfect 10” by society’s standards, educated model with it all, I hated everything about myself and even tried to destroy it because I didn’t feel I belonged or fit in, and I wanted to be noticed and loved.  And yet with that yearning to be “somebody” at any cost, I was willing to destroy it all in order to be sculpted into something else that society deemed worthy of love.  That is when God proclaimed that He was the sculptor, the Divine artist, and He created a masterpiece who was already beautiful.

Why is it when we have straight hair, we want curly hair?  Better yet, I remember being flat chested and wanting large breasts.  Well, now due to child bearing and age, gravity has blessed me with large breasts and I don’t want them.  You know how hard it is to find blouses that accommodate a larger bust without making you look pregnant?  Hello…

Blameless Without Each Other

Let’s celebrate this Independence Day by embracing our newfound freedom in accepting each other, every color and culture, our bodies, our beauty, our value and uniqueness, and the Beautiful Beloveds God designed us all to be.  No more running and hiding from our beautiful selves.  No more apologizing for who we are.  Let’s embrace the uniqueness that no one else has except for us.  Our lives matter, each one of us.  God designed us all unique with value that no one else has or can offer.  Thank you for contributing your beauty to the bunch.  The world would be dark and gloomy, not to mention flavorless, without your beautiful self.

Enjoy listening to the amazing lyrics and words from other beloveds in this video from Alessia Cara’s song, “Scars To Your Beautiful.”

Until next time…

Thank You For Being Beautiful You!

 

 

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It Takes More Than Courage To Be Kind To Yourself! Tammy Tangent Tuesdays!

Blameless Beautiful Be-Held

It Takes More Than Courage To Be Kind To Yourself!

Tammy Tangent Tuesdays!

Beauty exists in the mind of the Be-Loved and Be-Held!

Hello Beautiful!  I pray you’re having a blessed week so far filled with strength to press through with an abundant supply of tender mercies that we all need to remember our worth and value sojourning this side of heaven.  It’s that time again; it’s Tammy Tangent Tuesdays! 

I don’t know about you, but I have a tendency to believe that beauty exists solely in the eyes of the beholder rather than remembering that it exists in the mind of the Be-Loved and Be-Held!  And as I’m walking through some health issues, the appearance of infection and scars have left me wanting to hide behind closed doors until I’m healed completely.

How does a Beautiful Beloved remember that our beauty exists in the mind of the Be-Loved and Be-Held?  If our very own Creator reminds us to be gentle and kind to ourselves as we Blameless Walls Beautiful Definitioncelebrate how He created our inmost being by intricately knitting us together in our mother’s womb, how do we not praise Him for fearfully and wonderfully creating us while being awakened to how His beautiful works of art are seen and are enough (Psalm 139:13-14)?

I don’t know about you, but quite often lately, I am having to focus on who God says I am by how valuable and beautiful I am in His sight, especially since my battle scars have left me with more imperfections and somewhat deformed looking due to an infection.  That requires discipline with self-compassion and kindness.  I am trying to remind myself that being Beautiful has nothing to do with looks.  It’s how you are as a person and how you make others feel about themselves.  Being kind to everyone includes OURSELVES and that more often than not is dependent upon the COURAGE to love ourselves that a lot of us neglect.  Guilty as charged! ♥♥

Sadly, so many of us tender hearts have a tendency to forget just how valuable and beautiful we truly are.  I know for myself, this past week has had me screaming like a horror film fit for Halloween.  I was starting to feel like nothing but Blameless Mirror Wickedbare, dry bones falling out of the mirror just for a taste of something sweet as I glanced and saw what horror a rough week, or month for that matter, had done to a Beautiful Beloved.  The only bubbly I was holding onto was the ongoing battlefield going on in my brain and my deflection in trying to control it!

How can we claim and exude that confidence in knowing we are blossoming right where God has planted us which requires love and attention that we are supposed to embrace in the nurture and care of our own self when all we’re left with is being dry and brittle?  It’s okay to cry.  It’s okay to scream.  It’s okay to be disappointed.  We just have to remember to speak words of affirmation to ourselves filled with love, patience and grace.  Consoling our bruised and tender souls offers healing and is needed for a reason as we learn to be kind to ourselves.

Since I proudly wear my crown and say I’m high maintenance (gotta have me my Jesus time so my brittle bones can dance with life), that requires consistent nourishment (hello… feed me, feed me, feed me 🙂 ); you know, tender loving care that consists of peace and compassion, along with that gentle and consistent touch that the Word of God offers to heal our depleted hearts.

I have come to the conclusion that us Beautiful Beloveds can only walk in our beauty when we learn to practice the delicate art of kindness and self-compassion.  When we do so much for others and teeter across that fine line of forgetting ourselves, we need to pull the reins tightly and bask into some dedicated “ME” time. ♥♥

Never forget, Beautiful Beloved, being kind to yourself in words, thoughts and deeds is just as important, if not more beneficial, to our communities as being kind and loving to others!  Think thoughts that are true, pure, lovely and affirming when you’re talking to yourself.  It’s okay to allow the peace and healing to begin!  It’s called self-compassion; and you’re so worth it! 

Weekly challenge:  This weekly challenge is solely dedicated to being Beautiful You.  Let’s take care of self!!!  It’s our week to be kind to ourselves with compassion.  Let’s never forget that beauty doesn’t exist in the eyes of the beholder, it exists in the mind of the Be-Loved and Be-Held!  Let’s be refreshed, rejuvenated and restored this week.

Until next time…

 

Blameless Flower 6.6

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When Words Pierce Our Armor And Hurt Like Hell

Blameless Prepared For Battle

When Words Pierce Our Armor And Hurt Like Hell

Are You Prepared For Battle?  The Enemy Is! 

Manic Explosion vs. Armor of God, Part One!

If recovering from a fierce infection that attacked the heart’s chamber with erratic arrhythmia wasn’t jolting enough, the deep lacerations from daggers of hate and rage that accompanied a manic explosion would.  Who plans an attack on others while they’re in the hospital?  The enemy does, especially when your relationship with Jesus exposes their lies.

Family and friends are usually a great source for consolation and encouragement during traumatic times, but words from a meticulously planned attack were intended to take me out.  Patients are vulnerable to many infections during hospitalizations.  When random attacks from a family member announced their concern by delivering calibrated electrical shocks more powerful than any defibrillator left me stunned and infected. 

The explosion of this manic shrapnel left me bewildered and injured.  The slamming words of hate and bitterness increased the pressure of infection that laid beneath the sutures holding the weak and tattered heart together.  Hurt people hurt people; we all know that.  But how does a beloved swim against the current in a raging storm when the flaming arrows of the enemy refuse to cease?

Why is it people use the word “love” as a means to exercise control and manipulation?  God calls love an action, not a feeling or means for abuse.  When people are trying to keep the fuel lines of anger going while we work ever so hard to bring peace and forgiveness, they become desperate and exaggerate our imperfections to keep the truth from being exposed.  But when the offensive armor of our sword is sharpened, the injury afflicted willBlameless Forgiveness Even When It Hurts sting, but life-giving courage offers us to see clearly through all the bloodshed, carnage and death.

Her words pierced as she vomited words of rejection.  Her own shame caused from humiliation that the exposure of truths and confrontation delivered left her pride to declare “Done.”  I was shocked that she would choose my second hospitalization to download her shame and guilt.  Maybe it’s because her absence is normally the rule and she needed justification, I don’t know.  This time something was different.  So different that even my own reaction shocked me.

I used to run after unhealthy love and relationships.  I would do anything (understatement, hello!) to receive this conditional love of abuse in order to be affirmed and belong.  Everyone wants to be acknowledged and loved, but that longing becomes intense when we’ve been orphaned.  The cravings can be insatious when we are depleted of the affections that the covering of love is supposed to offer.  Abandonment and rejection can lead us down a path that is dangerously unhealthy.

Even though I may be orphaned, the love of my good, good Father in heaven has adopted me and claimed me as His own.  He has poured so much love over and through my heart, soul, body and mind as He relentlessly pursues me, His love has captured me and brought healing.  My relationship with my daddy enables me to keep my sword sharpened so that when the enemy attacks at the most inopportune time, and we’re talking here about a slivering and sneaky enemy who moves about lurking for someone to ambush (like in the hospital), we can raise our shields of faith to withstand these flaming arrows.

Oh sure, the words stated hurt.  I cried a bit in the hospital in order to release enough of this toxicity from further damaging my heart, but between the love, touch and prayers offered from fabulous friends, I was able to keep self-controlled long enough until I got home.  Then once I got home, I cried me a Noah’s Flood as I tried to process and understand this affliction that erupted from an emotional plague.  Some things are better left unknown.

So what are we supposed to do when others have manic episodes exposing their true bleeding hearts?  Yes, we are to forgive them, no doubt; but how do we get to that point where we’re able to forgive?  That forgiveness doesn’t necessarily mean we will continue to engage in a relationship with them, but how can we become free from the toxicity that was poured out?

For me, that required surrendered time in prayer while being immersed in God’s Word to understand this pain.  God blessed me with an amazing bestie who knows my heart and celebrates my life through the good, bad and ugly.  This allowed me to be vulnerable Blameless Crown Tiarra 7without fear of judgment in order to process through the pain while receiving comfort and peace. 

I didn’t have to spend weeks or even months reliving this trauma in trying to understand how cold and bitter another beloved’s heart was through hurtful words and why they were spewed out.  Trying to tarnish another beloved’s character only exposes your own depth of rage and bitterness.  That energy and focus stays on who God says I am, His Treasured Daughter.

Every day as I am overcoming, I am becoming more and more like Him.  Pain is inevitable, sadly.  I am learning to be true to myself, react with love and continue sojourning this side of heaven without the lingering effects of pain caused by others.

You see, I am trying to embrace the fact that I am a Beautiful Beloved chosen and pursued by the Lord God Almighty, just like you!  God is the one who holds the key to my heart.  Nobody can strip me of my identity and worth; not family or ex-husbands.  They didn’t give me my identity to begin with so why would anyone feel that they could actually take it away, especially through threat and coercion?  They may try as they are crafty, but the more I know and love my good, good father and the more I realize how much He truly loves me just the way I am, their daggers and threats cannot penetrate my armor.

Because we are loved by our amazing father, nobody can take away our acceptance.  Nobody can take away our love that is freely given.  Nobody can take away our identity.  Why?  Because it was never theirs to give us in the first place.  That love is given by our Lord and no one else.  That’s what He did for you and me.  We are unconditionally loved by Him.  That’s what He does, He gives.  He doesn’t demand we conform to His way or the highway, He loves us just the way we are!

You know, it’s not about what our family did or does, nor what our friends do or did.  We need to remember where to place our focus and receive our affections.  It’s about what God did for us.  If we can just remember that it’s about what God did for us, we won’t concentrate on the afflictions that others cast upon us.  We will live bravely knowing we are the Bride of Christ and have royal blood running through our veins while being unconditionally loved.

Until next time…

Thank You For Being Beautiful You!

Blameless Don't Leave Home Without It (3)1

 


 

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Be A Warrior, Not A Worrier! Tammy Tangent Tuesdays

Blameless Warrior Not A Worrier 1

 

Be A Warrior, Not A Worrier!

Tammy Tangent Tuesdays

John 14:27

“Peace I leave with you; my peace I give you. I do not give to you as the world gives. Do not let your hearts be troubled and do not be afraid.”

Hi Beautiful!  I hope you received the many prayers I offered up last week asking our Lord to cover you with undeniable peace and joy.  After all, that is the Holy Spirit’s work in our lives.  If you’re peaceful and full of joy, that just radiates His glory.  It’s that time again; it’s Tammy Tangent Tuesdays!

How do we go about our daily lives claiming this peace that Jesus offers us in John 14:27?  First of all, I pondered this a lot in the hospital.  I don’t know about you, but when I’m fretting and worrying about things I need to do and fix, like when we’re in the hospital, my focus leaves abiding in the comfort and strength of my faith and the Lord’s grace and promises.  Instead it binds and holds me captive and restrained, wrapped up and spun tightly in the torment of worry.

I personally have to remember David’s proclamation in Psalm 18 that God promises to give us strength to meet these challenges that threaten our peace so we can walk through them victoriously instead of focusing on the wished-upon elimination.  This is where we get tripped up and frustrated, expecting them to be eliminated.  How else are we going to grow?  “You armed me with strength for battle (Psalm 18:39).” 

The Lord arms us with His strength by equipping us with the Armor of God (Ephesians 6:13-18).  He does not want His beloveds discouraged and defeated.  There are two major pieces I don’t dare leave my bed without putting on every day after prayer.  Prayer is the upmost vital connection and instrument that activates the other pieces.

The first piece is the breastplate of  righteousness.  This breastplate protects our heart which is the very seat of our emotions, you know, our self-worth and trust.  And secondly, our shields of faith protects us from the enemy’s flaming arrows that come in the form of insults, temptations, or even setbacks.  This helps us see and move beyond our circumstances knowing that victory is ours for the taking.

Our lives are full of battles, filled with stresses and anxieties.  The Lord knows this; that’s why He gently nudges our hearts and invites us to open up His Word and engage in a relationship with Him.  His desire is to cover us with His Great Love that equips us with the courage to boldly walk through our battles.  How can we trust Him if we don’t take the time to get to know Him?  Talk about Love that transforms us into Warriors, not Worriers!

God reassures us that these battles are against the powers of this world, the enemy, which are led solely to disrupt and create barriers that cause doubts against the love of our Lord, but how He desires to help bring peace to our weary souls. 

He gave us Matthew 6 which caters to worry and anxiety.  He created the mind and knows how powerful the forces are that control it; worry and anxiety.  He offers help, but we have to take action by getting to know Him.  That requires engaging in a conversation for guidance called prayer.

God gave us courage-infusing and peace-giving passages that all faith walkers need to boldly proclaim warrior status.  For instance, Proverbs 12:25 proclaims the obvious, “An anxious heart weights a man down, but a kind word cheers him up.”  1 Peter 5:7 reminds us, “Cast all your anxiety on Him because He cares for you.” 

When we carry all our worries and struggles by ourselves, it relates that we have not trusted God with our lives.  Letting God have our worries empowers us to not be distracted.  This opens the door of our heart to receive the peace that He promises, thereby positioning our hearts and minds to hear directly from Him.  This way we learn to overcome as we become more like Him.

I don’t know about you, but I become weakened when I suffer; and when I suffer, I fret and worry and find myself parked in the wrong hood, you know, the bad neighborhood of our mind.  Emotional attacks do far more damage to me than removing any vital organ.  These emotional fears usher in worry and anxiety that rob me of my peace, hinders hearing my Lord’s voice, and zaps me of the strength that being a warrior offers.  Sound familiar?

Weekly Challenge:  Overcome anxieties and worry this week by spending some time each day, ten minutes or more, engaging with the Word and getting to know our amazing Lord.  This way we can learn to trust Him as we become equipped with His graces in order to be a warrior, not a worrier! 

Everyone has at least ten minutes to devote daily.  This way you will find yourself with more time to dance gracefully because you cast all your cares and anxieties on Him and it enables your beautiful mind to peacefully and freely waltz.

Until next time…

Thank You For Being Beautiful You!

Blameless Crown Tiarra 7

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Thank You For Allowing Me To Be Daddy’s Little Girl For Just A Little While Longer!

Blameless Ballet Innocense

Thank You For Being Such A Great Father!

Happy Father’s Day

Thank You for allowing me to be Daddy’s Little Girl for just a little while longer!

Simple words really…  “Thank you for being such a great Father!”  If they are so simple, then why did hearing those eight simple words take my breath away as it tore into and exposed the deep recesses of my bleeding heart?  How could the innocence and the purity of gratitude produce such intensity and fervor?

As we huddled together in prayer and reflection before setting out to love on the less fortunate, we generally tried to conclude each prayer with praise and gratitude for our own daily provision.  The beautiful and genuine words spoken from a full heart could have easily been overlooked had I not been still and present in the moment. 

Repeating the words that the tender heart spoke with passionate praises and gratitude to God were gentle whispers of “Thank you for being such a great father.”  As I absorbed and digested every consonant and vowel from these simple words flowing from a pure heart, I dropped to my knees into a puddle of tears that developed due to my convicted heart.  

Blameless Daddy SafeAs I fell to my knees in total awe and adoration while pondering this Great Love of the Father that had sheltered me the whole time as I sought refuge by clinging ever-so-tightly to, I wondered when, if ever, I actually conceived or even truly grasped the concept that God was my daddy, my protector, my redeemer; the father I had always craved for, much less thanked and appreciated for being such a great father.  Have I taken His Love for granted without truly realizing what all He’s done for me and what all it cost Him?  That actual awareness flooded my heart and dropped me to my knees!

If we dare to admit honestly, we often take God for granted and push away His blessings.  While that may be true, God nonetheless is always there for us.  He listens to our needless complaints and every whimper while capturing all our tears and holding them as precious in a bottle (Psalm 56:8).  He always walks alongside of us while holding our hand, reassuring us not to be afraid (Isaiah 41:10-13).  He promises to never leave us (Deuteronomy 31:8) and never will; and He gently caresses and strokes our faces while comforting us with affirmations and reassuring value of “I love you just the way you are.” 

So why would a tender heart so loved and acknowledged, one who is always hanging onto those strong and powerful legs ever-so-tightly, not realize that God is the perfect father to the fatherless (Psalm 68:5-6)?  Does this mean I took His role for granted through assumption, which we all do at times, or is it because I have always believed I needed to behave or perform a certain way in order to receive His love and, therefore, became too exhausted to just encounter this Great Love affair that is freely offered to anyone who asks and dares to receive?

These simplistic, yet powerful, words evoked such a posture from a girl who has suffered great loss like so many tender hearts today who mourn the loss of a father’s love without the realization of how loved she really is!  Coming from a girl who loves to sing praises to the Lord constantly because of His overflowing joy, I am giddy as I now skip along in life and travel with the Lord as He gently leads and romances my every fiber.  What a love affair!  I love to praise Him for all His wonderful gifts, but thanking him for being such a great father? 

Wow…  It hit me.  God is my daddy.  God’s Love is so amazing and fulfilling, I hadn’t realized my tight grip had become loosened and I was now enjoying the father/daughter waltz with God leading the orchestration and my joy could no longer be contained due to gratitude (Colossians 2:6-7).

As much as I care to admit, I almost feel as if this adoration for God, through vocalization or church attendance, becomes lip service almost at times and not from the heart that Matthew 15:8 talks about.  I mean, if we truly perceived His majesty and His power and His Shekinah glory, our attitudes and mindsets would be so different, so innocent and childlike, so full of awe that we would earnestly seek out that precious time to bow before Him in deep reverence and appreciate life and all its trials and tribulations with grace and dignity.  We would approach life without fear and love more and judge less!  How we take God’s sovereignty lightly and our inheritance for granted!  God owes us nothing; yet gave us His only son to suffer a horrendous death on the cross at Calvary so we could be reconciled to Him (1 John 4).  Now that’s love!!!

If that isn’t enough in and of itself to say thank you for being such a great father, I don’t know what is.  What father (or person) exists 24 hours a day with a belt full of power tools just waiting for us to call upon Him for help?  God loves to help us; if only we would allow Him the opportunity to have Blameless Daddy Pinksome room to fix all of our problems before we decide to intervene because we know it all (don’t we wish!) or we’re too impatient and take over by becoming that contractor or doctor who botches things up and causes more problems due to our own services rendered.

You see, He has to tap into the artery to pull out the hurt to enable the healing process to begin while occupying the spaces with new life and vitality that once were broken and filled with disease (pain)!  This was major heart surgery that could only be accomplished by the Great Physician with a drill bit six feet in length (well, I’m 5’10”, close enough ). 

We can’t give up on God and His timing, He slowly and magnificently brings healing during the transformation process, but only when we become fully surrendered and ready to receive.  How easy it is to sit back and bask in His amazing love and omnipresence, but never grasp how wide and deep His love truly is (Ephesians 3:17-19).  His love surpasses all knowledge and wisdom.

Being depleted of the Father’s love creates deep wounds that oftentimes develops into depression, addictions, isolation and, sadly, suicidal tendencies.  I became depressed as a teenager and my depression became severe enough that I attempted to take my own life by driving myself off of a cliff over 37 years ago, all due to the fact that I wanted to be loved and feel loved. You can read about that suicide attempt here.

I know you’re scared and how you want to be loved.  I also know how easy it is to numb that pain through drugs, alcohol, food, work and even isolation.  It hurts!  God wants in, He’s tugging on your heart right now saying, “Let me in, Beautiful Beloved.  Let’s waltz together!  I love you just the way you are.  You don’t need to do a thing except receive my love by believing.  My love is patient, my love is kind, my love does not easily anger and it keeps no record of your mistakes or perceived failures (1 Corinthians 13).  Get to know me!  Receive it; it is free!  I love you, child of mine!”  That’s the definition of a Good, Good Father!

Let’s embrace this Great Love of our Heavenly Father.  We’re not only safe and secure snuggled up next to our daddy, but we know He loves us just the way we are and there’s nothing we can do to change or lose that Love.  That comfort and reassurance should give us the confidence knowing we don’t have to conform to others’ leading, we don’t have to look a certain way, we’re allowed to voice our feelings and thoughts, and we are loved just the way we are!!!  Now, that’s love worth pursuing and it’s unconditional!

What are you waiting for; He is waiting for you with open arms and a six-foot-long drill bit!

Let’s allow these simple words, “Thank you for being such a great father,” to be on our lips and in our hearts as we pour out our praises and tap into His Great Love by letting Him take the lead in our dance as we waltz together!

Until next time…

Happy Father’s Day, Papa God; and to every Father!

 

 

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Thank You Sutter Roseville Hospital For Hiring Radiating Nurses

Blameless Nurses and Doctors

Thank You Sutter Roseville Hospital For Hiring Radiating Nurses

Tammy Tangent Tuesdays

Hi Beautiful!  I pray you’re having a blessed week so far filled with all the love and strength you need to sojourn gracefully while waltzing this side of heaven.  It’s that time again; it’s Tammy Tangent Tuesdays!

This past week required tapping into my own reserve tank for resources that can only be found in the depth of my soul.  No sooner than I clicked “publish” on last week’s Tammy Tangent Tuesdays challenge, I found myself in the hospital requiring emergency services that no one is ever prepared to deal with.

When one resents provisional occupancy at any hospital, had it not been for the expertise and call of Dr. Attarwala, along with my beautiful emergency room physician, Dr. Anna Nguyen, and my remarkably hard-working, never-stopping R.N., Mr. Noah himself, who even tolerated my Noah’s Flood, I would not have graciously accepted reality that wheeled me up to my new home on the cardiology floor.

Who would have known my new home would be equipped with even more amazing RNs, like Ethan and Renee, who kept me comfortable and medicated; their beautiful assistants, like Kanesha and Rita; the many LVNs; the heartwarming dietary clinician who served me special plates of veggies that induced me to finally start eating after four days; and the many housecleaning beloveds who catered to my constant upkeep.

My joy would have been robbed had it not been for all y’all.  I went through these deep waters victoriously because you helped me stay afloat and not drown during this raging river of difficulty.  Please take to heart, you are God’s hands and feet.  I noticed how exhausted you were with the relentless alarm of the monitors; how you gave up your break because you didn’t want to leNurse's Prayerave my care; the chaotic crisis that left you unable to empty your bladder; the unpredictable state of my vitals that left you bewildered and feeling inadequate; the grace exhibited when having to share bad news which was reciprocated with anger and piercing vocals; the sound of your growling stomach while others complained how time-consuming it was when you had to gown up and off each time you entered my room.

There I was laying on my gurney in complete silence, afraid of each breath as I faced the fear of the unknown.  As I contended with the physical pain, you sat down next to me reassuring me with words of comfort and warmth as you held my cold hand saying, “I’m so sorry.”  Your compassion and your love ushered me into the presence of my Lord as I met face to face with my faith.  This stilled the tears and replaced it with joy.  It also replaced my fears with peace and strength, and it turned the physical pain into laughter.

Caring for one is called love; but caring for hundreds, that’s nursing!

Tonight I took the opportunity with an exhausted mind to embrace being still as I inhaled every bit of the picturesque view of heaven that was being painted and awaiting my arrival.  My heart and soul rejoiced as I witnessed a soothing and vibrant sunset.  This just reaffirmed that there is beauty and solace right before our very eyes during the dark times, but it requires trust and courage to open up and peek through the lens of Love Himself while allowing God to display His majestic glory.

Sadly, registered nurses hear more grumblings and complaints than hearing words of praise and appreciation from less-than-wonderful patients, situations, and demanding job duties.  Yet, they still find the grace to showcase genuine concern for patients and their family members. 

This led me to want to dedicate this week’s Tammy Tangent Tuesdays to all the amazing RNs, Radiating Nurses, who give so much more than dedication and expertise to take care of their patients.

Thank you for radiating light in darkness which helps patients hang onto all hope!  When we’re in the hospital, we’re completely exposed with nowhere to run and hide and that becomes frightening.  And when the lenses of our journeys look bleak, we oftentimes take for granted the beauty that God orchestrates to sprinkle the love and pour hope into our situations that we need to bravely navigate through all the debris!

R.N.s Equal Radiating Nurses

Radiating Nurses not only care for their patients, but they share the gift of comfort and grieve right alongside of us.  They offer hope when they question treatment and interject Blameless Nurses Prayeroftentimes by being our advocates.  They bring peace during the chaos, and they extend a healing touch just when it is needed.  They are gifts and the vessels God utilizes as conduits in being His hands and feet; so let’s tell them thank you for their service.

Weekly challenge:  Let’s thank all the Radiating Nurses we cross paths with by either writing out words of gratitude and encouragement through letters or cards (better yet, tell their shift supervisor), offer tokens of love by handing them flowers and sharing how they brightened up our day, offer them prayers and praise, gift card, hugs, or even Sutter’s highest reward, nominate them for a Sutter Star for their service and performance.  Simple and random acts of kindness and appreciation go a long way!

Until next time…

Thank You For Being Beautiful You!

Beautiful You

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Where Is The Love? Cardboard Stories! Tammy Tangent Tuesdays

Blameless Homeless Cardboard Stories

Where Is The Love? 

Cardboard Stories!

Tammy Tangent Tuesdays

Hi Beautiful!  I pray you were able to sense the unique stories that every Cardboard Story related.  Even as I write this, my heart is so heavily burdened.  This sense of loss is clouding over how I generally start these Tammy Tangent Tuesdays.  Tears just pour down my face hearing the testimonies of each individual beloved.  Homelessness is real and more predominant than most people even dare to understand.

I have walked the trails personally and frequently.  I have ministered to these tender hearts.  I have clothed, broken bread with (eaten together while listening), even given temporary shelter and employment to some of the homeless.  It’s heartbreaking.  I can even identify with most of these precious loved ones and their stories.

I may not speak four languages, nor have I built robots, or received a scholarship to play baseball; but I have lost it all and started over.  I have a son who courageously battles life with epilepsy.  I was a single mom working two jobs not knowing if it was going to be enough to keep a roof over our heads, and my sons and I escaped a violent environment. 

I understand their pain and their sense of loss and desperation.  And let me share, without embracing the hands and feet of God, I probably would have ended up like the many beloveds who are finding themselves homeless and without hope.

Where’s the Love?  If God created His Beautiful Beloveds to glorify Him, how does one look at society with all the tragedy and loss surrounding so many beloveds and see love and grace being extended?

You know, I don’t know.  It breaks my heart.  I’ve suffered greatly myself, but I also have encountered the hands of God reaching down to help me back up.  He’s a gracious God, slow to anger not wanting anyone to perish, and that’s where we get to be His vessels by being the hands and feet of God to those who are in need.  What an honor!

A picture speaks a thousand words.  Nothing needs to be said further.  There’s a lot of homeless beloveds in our communities today, working and not working.  When I shared last week that I was hearing and witnessing a lot of beat-up beloveds who needed a lot of Love, His Great Love, to be poured into and have their souls nourished with support and encouragement, I was not talking about these beloveds whose stories are written on cardboard boxes.

Since being the hands and feet of God can and should be relatively easy, especially with the many gifts the Lord has blessed each of us with, why are we allowing this epidemic of homeless beloveds to continue?  It’s not going to go away; it’s common life now.  We all can make a difference.  As Mother Teresa said, “If you cannot feed a hundred people, then feed just one.” 

Blameless Homeless Plate For One 2.2

For those of you that missed my last homeless couple updates, Tammy and Dave are now in their respective three-month programs with CARE.  They did get split up, but it’s a small sacrifice to pay to get back on their feet.  They taught me a lot about how limited resources are for those without under-age children.  We need more resources to bridge the gap between church and state.

Tammy and Dave are one of a few homeless couples that I have fallen in love with, ate meals together, loved on, temporarily employed and put in a hotel while ministering to them as best as I could.  One person can make a huge difference.  One life at a time!

 Blameless Homeless TD

Weekly Challenge:  I know most of us can’t afford to feed a hundred people, but this weekly challenge is to buy a prepared meal or two, a bagged lunch with extra milk (milk is a great source of protein and calcium that they desperately need), and hand it to a homeless person with a little tag or handwritten note just saying, “You are not forgotten.  I will pray for your protection.  There is hope!”  It is such a small token, but one that is greatly needed.

Please take a few minutes and look them in the eyes and smile.  They are not to be feared, but loved on.  They are just so full of shame, that is why they struggle with making eye contact and look down.  I’m sure you can appreciate that.

I pray the Lord will open your eyes to the many beloveds who are homeless and in need; and that you become blessed as you minister to the less fortunate being God’s hands and feet to those who need to be touched by His Great Love! 

Until next time…

Thank You For Being Beautiful You!

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How Does One Go From This To… Clearance Rack?

Blameless How Does One Go From This To...

How Does One Go From This To…

Clearance Rack?

When You’re Rejected, Returned, Refused & Recluse!

Rejected?  Returned?  Refused?  Now I’m going Recluse!  Or at least I want to.  I understand why so many tender hearts isolate and go at it alone.

Do you ever feel like the words and opinions of others portray a mental depiction that you thought was developed from your own insecurities being illuminated or hanging out in the wrong neighborhood again? 

Here you are, unbeknownst to you, an infamous motion picture star of a 3D finale.  You’re hanging on a clearance rack for all to see marked down.  Returned and Refused!  Examining you at every angle, nausea sets in due to the lingering stench of their dragon’s breath.  They’re that close.  It makes you want to projectile for many reasons. 

After their relentless review of every imperfection at the cost of each bad angle and exaggeration, they chuckle while announcing the attached “clearance” price tag regarding your worth and value is now stamped “zilch.”  Rejection at her finest hour!

  Infamous Star of Rejection

Being considered “detestable” and “unloved” and “infamous” is a torturous form of rejection to be labeled.  These labels come in many forms, but it’s mainly developed through the words and lies of hurt beloveds who are threatened or want attention, fear being exposed, or even jealously.  They keep these fuel lines of anger, gossip and deceit going by tarnishing our character to make themselves feel better. 

Used Goods on the Clearance Rack

Buy me, buy me, buy me!!!  Sad pleas coming from a Beloved whose Jesus already paid a huge price for.  My redemption cost much.  When our motives are pure and we walk our faith, the flaming arrows from the enemy Blameless Clearance Rack 3are relentless.  Our mouths may be a small member of the body, but its destructive power will do more damage than any tsunami or even a nuclear war could afflict (James 3:5).  Those natural disasters have no power over what the destruction of the tongue can do.  The enemy uses this powerful member to divide and destroy one another by pitting us against each other.  Our tongues speak and spread division and destruction.  How can we celebrate each other when all we’re doing is competing and comparing and criticizing everyone offensively?

Let me share, Beautiful Beloved, when I was hurting due to the lies and actions from others, my Lord assured me that He hears, hurts and hates those words being stamped “no good.”  Our loving Father highlights Proverbs 6:16-19 announcing, “There are six things the Lord hates, seven that are detestable to Him:  Haughty eyes (pride), a lying tongue (hello), hands that shed innocent blood (betrayal), a heart that devises wicked schemes (exaggeration of faults), feet that are quick to rush into evil (gossip mongers), a false witness who pours out lies (covering their assets), and a man who stirs up dissension among brothers (drama queen).”

After unleashing my Noah’s Flood into my bestie’s lap that nearly took her out due to the force of the download, did I again realize that women are ferociously catty and instead of Blameless CEOswanting to celebrate each other’s (CEOs) lives, they spend exhausting amounts of time criticizing each other while comparing each other all in the name of jealousy.  Here I’m trying to love and encourage them through support and they’re devising wicked schemes to take me down.  As much as it hurt, and trust me, it hurt and felt like hell unleashed on my heart similar to Edward Scissor Hands shredding it; that’s when the Lord reminded me, “Are you seeking the approval of man or me?”  

Praying for people who have slandered us and continue to spread lies is another form of persecution where the Lord wants us to walk through this darkness exhibiting and exposing His light through love.  This is where Tragedy Meets His Majesty revealing His magnetic glory. 

If only I can remember to count this friction as pure joy, it will strengthen me as I persevere and allow His magnetic glory to be clearly revealed (James 1:2).  The world first hated Jesus (John 15:18-25) and I am a part of His Army of Hope, so…

I’m being honest here, sometimes it is hard to pour out love when others’ venomous tongues are sneaking around to kill, steal and destroy.  The pain afflicted by a few was intense.  It was pain that I hadn’t recognized in quite a while and didn’t know what to do with the infection from the venomous bite.

Processing this pain requires intimacy with the Father to unleash His fruit.  The fruit of the Spirit clearly announces what’s going on in our hearts and behind these poker faces, but it breaks my heart how we’re hurting my Lord by our hardened hearts and lack of relationship with Him.  We leave our Bibles unopened.  We just hang out in the four walls of our deception. 

Purification of our hearts are needed when we’re not walking out what we say we believe.  Congregations are not holding tanks or places to perform to gain worldly power and media prestige.  This burden of Godly anger is something I am finding hard to keep restrained.

Those stings of rejection that were repeatedly gnashing at my body and penetrating through my armor made me feel like I was being set up to be hung out to dry.  Here I was living out what Proverbs 31:8-9 says about “Speak up for those who cannot speak for themselves, for the rights of all who are destitute.  Speak up and judge fairly; defend the rights of the poor and needy” and people reacted by attacking my loved one and spread lies about his precious life.

But…  I give you permission to continue to poke, prod and hang me out to dry as you continue to squeeze the life of Jesus out of me because its splashing will get on you and effect you.  That’s a sprinkling of His Love that goes deep into your soul and its fragrance is nothing but pure sweetness.

I choose to bear witness to my Jesus and love you.  I choose to forgive you.  I see how this school of pain has developed perseverance and character in me.  You may have “intended to harm me, but God intended it for good to accomplish what is now being done, the saving of many lives” through an explosion of pure magnetic glory (Genesis 50:20).  I rest my case!

Until next time…

Thank You For Being Beautiful You!

Blameless Tragedy Meets His Majesty (2)

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Dear Treasured Pearl Of Suffering, You Are Not Alone!

Blameless Treasured Pearl

 

Dear Treasured Pearl Of Suffering,

You Are Not Alone!

“The kingdom of heaven is like a merchant looking for fine pearls.  When he found one of great value, he went away and sold everything he had and bought it” (Matthew 13:45-46).

Suffering Produces Character!

Dear treasured pearl of suffering, if your heart will bare only one thing, please just know how loved and precious you are!  I love you and God loves you, and we both see you.  I mourn this dark period right alongside of you.  I hear your pleas for help and the cries of your heart.  I’ve been where you are.  I understand how cold and lonely it is swimming through the fluidity of unknowns.  Grace is extended freely from Love Himself.  The powerful force of acceptance that you yearn for is waiting to catch you.

As much as it pains me to release you back out into the ocean, I have done all I know to do. I will continue to love you to eternity; but I personally cannot be your savior.  That is Jesus’ job and one in which only He is qualified for, paid the full price for, and died for!  I am a mere mortal, prone to make mistakes, with my own broken blood vessels chasing after His heart.

Every Beloved deserves to know and experience that she is not only loved and valued by the God who magnificently created her, but awakens to the Truth that her worth is as priceless as the treasured pearl.

Matthew 13:45-46 gives us a stunning rendition of God’s Great Love during the struggles of life using the analogy of a pearl with great price.  Pearls are created when a foreign substance like sand, a wound, creeps into the oyster through either a crack or hole in the Blameless Oysterhard outer shell that protects the tender insides from harsh elements.  Surrounding storms and crashing waves weaken the outer shell which causes cracks and broken shells.

Divinely, the oyster doesn’t expel the irritant.  Instead it decides to persevere through the adversity by painstakingly covering and bathing its wounded foreign object over and over from its own secretions inside the shell.  This perseverance produces character.  This beautiful pearl would never have developed had it not been for the oyster’s endurance to withstand the pain.

What an unfathomable example of redemption and an example of beauty found after suffering through adversity.  The alchemy developed through this period of unwanted and uncharted territory is nothing short of miraculous, designed specifically to bring out the brilliant treasure within. 

Sometimes when God is developing and refining us in our school of pain, we often perceive it as humiliation and punishment in order to bury us.  These opposing forces not only strengthen us, but the surrounding storms develop brave hearts who persevere.  This process and development is coming straight from Love Himself.  After all, Jesus is like the merchant, He values us so much, He sold everything to buy and redeem us.

Suffering in loneliness only enhances the sting of rejection.  Anxious knots hold it captive.  The pressures from life combined with waves of unforgiveness and lack of community create a powerful force similar to an undertow that makes us feel as if it’s pulling us back out into the raging sea like a tsunami. 

When we feel we’re drowning in the crashing waves that have beat and pound us to the bone, we can’t lose sight of the extending hands and feet of God that are trying to hold us as we actually develop strength that ignites treasured pearls in this school of pain

To see the true beauty of the treasured pearl, the oyster must die first that was working hard on its own journey with the adversity so the treasure buried beneath the surface could be found.  Talk about vibrant beauty being found, the pearl of suffering!  God is there right alongside of us not wanting anyone to perish.  Please fathom one thing:  Tragedy leads to His Majesty!  

Beautiful Beloved, don’t let the fears of yesterday’s guilt and today’s fear pull you into tomorrow’s grave.  Leave what happened in the grave.  We all yearn to be surrounded by love, life and community.  We must tackle our Giant of Fear and move forward.  Perfect Love casts out all fear and God’s Love never leaves or forsakes us.

When we’re washed up on the shore all alone, battered and torn, the outside appearance of our circumstances are not reflective of who God says we are.  He knows and sees what’s developing on the inside of our broken and decaying forms, treasured beauties.  It will require work and trust as we walk out that faith being surrendered, but it will produce character and patience.  Seeking God is similar to prying open the oyster; its mysterious marvels are worth the discovery.

Relationships are built on time and communication.  During the turbulence of the storms, fears and insecurities hinder our bearing threshold that needs to be firmly grounded in the gospel so we will see these gifts of friendships that are honest, open and transparent and that can make riding the waves so much easier.

I pray as you’re choosing to sit at the feet of Jesus, you will be able to see the love in His eyes while hearing His beating heart that shares what a treasured daughter you are and how loved and precious in His sight you are.  God sees you as His prized possession, His treasured pearl.  That’s worth claiming!

Until next time…

Thank You For Being Beautiful You!

Blameless Pearl Treasure


 

 

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Just Because…

Blameless Beautiful Flowers 1

Just Because…

I thank my God every time I remember you.  In all my prayers for all of you, I always pray with joy because of your partnership in the gospel from the first day until now, being confident of this, that He who began a good work in you will carry it on to completion until the day of Christ Jesus (Philippians 1:3-6).

Tammy Tangent Tuesdays

Hi Beautiful!  I pray you enjoyed the festivities celebrating and sharing your respect for our Fallen Heroes and their families.  Such selfless acts of valor and courage, all in the name of freedom!  I have to say, what an honor it is for me to be sojourning this side of heaven with y’all as we walk faithfully through each day radiating that Beautiful You!

I only hope that the many prayers that went out last week asking that our Lord would cover you with an outbreak of undeniable peace and joy that changes the atmosphere became obvious as you noticed all the beauty and wonder surrounding your presence.  Being highly favored is a gift!  It’s that time again; it’s Tammy Tangent Tuesdays!

God created His Beautiful Beloveds to glorify Him.  After all, He calls us His works of art and His masterpieces (Ephesians 2:10).  Oh, what love!  Sadly, though, I’m hearing and witnessing a lot of beat-up Beloveds in our communities who need a lot of Love, His Great Love, to be poured into and have their souls nourished with support and encouragement.

Being the hands and feet of God can and should be relatively easy, especially with the many gifts the Lord has blessed each of us with.  Let’s tap into this creative gift by writing notes of praise and gratitude encouraging one another to keep pressing through while affirming the blessings that their lives have graced us with. 

I’m going for the handwritten card, you know, writing out a short affirmation of love and encouragement expressing how much their life and friendship has blessed me with.  I don’t know about you, but what a grand diversion and huge golden nugget to forever hold onto and tuck away in the fold of our hearts seeing words of love and appreciation when picking up and going through our mail. 

Seeing words of affirmation saying, “I see you, Beautiful.  You’re such a Brilliant and Magnetic Light.  I love you and thank you for blessing me with the gift of friendship”; or to the single parent, “You’re doing a great job.  Keep loving those babies,” etc.  Not going to share all my ideas.  Ha!  You get the point!

What a great way to also model to our children and grandchildren how being God’s hands and feet is fun and rewarding while blessing others.  There are many military personnel, cancer patients and even teachers who would thrive and bloom with some summer love. 

God wants His children to serve one another and that does not mean inclusive of the four walls where we worship at.  Get out, move out!  Move outside those four walls!  There is a whole world in need of His Great Love. 

When we serve out of His Love, the kindness and gentleness of our gratitude for the alchemy given through our salvation will be illuminated without seeking to please ourselves.  A refreshing sprinkling of love that nurtures and sustains!

Being the hands and feet of God has never been more gratifying!

Weekly Challenge:  Pick seven special people, and it does not necessarily have to be family and/or friends, that you want to pour love into, honor and acknowledge.  This includes doctors, nurses, pharmacists, waitresses, law enforcement, first responders, pastors, you name it!  Write them a short message sharing that they’re not only enough, but that you appreciate them for their valuable contribution and wanted to let them know that their lives radiate love and how you can’t thank them enough for being a part of your life sojourning this side of heaven. 

This could be in the format of a handwritten card, an email, a letter, text (please don’t ♥♥♥) or even a social networking posting!  We all love seeing it in words to go back and ponder and be encouraged.  This will be a token of love they will forever carry in their heart. 

Until next time…

Thank You For Being Beautiful You!

 

Blameless Beautiful You Bouquet 2

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Honoring The Fallen! Never Forgotten?

Blameless Never Forgotten

 

Honoring the Fallen!

Never Forgotten? 

Courage is Contagious

—0o0—

Billy Graham proclaimed, “Courage is Contagious.  When a brave man takes a stand, the spine of others are stiffened.”

 

Honoring the Fallen!  Never Forgotten?  Hmmm… never forgotten?  Really?  Where in most Memorial Day celebrations, unless you’re with a family or community of inactive or active service personnel, do you hear stories of valor and selfless acts of bravery that proclaim this great caliber as to why we celebrate Memorial Day?    

Forgive Us For Not Recognizing Our Fallen!

Sadly, it seems there is more recognition geared towards retail sales advertisements along with the hustle and bustle ushering in the first big holiday announcing summertime.  These preparations for the festivities are great; you know, family gatherings, coming together, barbecuing, boating, camping, traveling with the additional three-day weekend, but what about carving out time to honor the fallen which is the sole purpose of Memorial Day?

There is nothing wrong with the excitement in getting together with our family and friends to unwind and celebrate; we all need that!  But what about the fallen heroes and their families that have lost so much, their precious and valued loved ones, due to their sacrificial service for our freedom?  How are they being remembered?  They are searching for this gratitude and consolation in our festivities that have seemed to be glossed over.

Where is the tribute and honor that should be at the forefront of our celebrations for our fallen heroes on Memorial Day?

Where is the dedicated time for this tribute and recognition that brought us freedom?  Where does the honor, the respect, the remembrance, and the salutation fit into our celebratory festivities this Memorial Day weekend?  After all, our great nation was built on the freedom that these fallen heroes died for!  That deserves recognition.

The ocean tears that have been released by mothers, fathers, wives, husbands, families, and the many innocent children that look for comfort from a nation that pauses to think about, honor and celebrate what their loved one selflessly gave to have this freedom extended is non-existent and quite neglected.

If you’ve ever had to comfort a grieving soul who just learned of their loved one’s death, there is nothing more dreadful and heartbreaking than delivering the piercing words, “I’m sorry, but your loved one was killed in the line of duty serving his/her country.” 

Being honest here, when I was raising my children, I looked forward to having an extra day off with the announcement that summertime was near.  Any excuse to celebrate was quite a gift.  Memorial Day just meant getting the boat ready and the family together for a couple of Blameless United States Flag Last Breathdays spent on the water without any further forethought.  Tragic!
Where is the honor, recognition and respect geared towards our fallen heroes and their families acknowledging how they dedicated and sacrificed their lives?  This is the pure definition of what is called a beautiful exchange.  Can we start teaching our children and share with our families the significance of what Memorial Day deserves?  We can testify to this valor of great sacrifice by sharing a few of the following quotes:

“The willingness of America’s veterans to sacrifice for our country has earned them our lasting gratitude.” – Jeff Miller

“The legacy of heroes is the memory of a great name and the inheritance of a great example.” – Benjamin Disraeli

Can we maybe start proclaiming how we’re proud to be Americans and express our gratitude for the meaning behind Memorial Day.  This honor will offer golden nuggets of comfort to the fallen and their families to carry close to their hearts reminding them thatBlameless Memorial Day. In case you thought it was National BBQ Day their lives mattered and stood for victory and won’t be forgotten, nor were their deaths in vain!  Maybe while we’re vacationing, we can even share with others the significance while honoring the millions of soldiers who lost their lives.  Speak it while engaging with others.

There is nothing wrong with celebrating, but putting at the forefront what all of our Fallen Heroes have achieved will keep their legacy alive and one in which will never be forgotten.  It’s a gratitude for blessing us with a privilege that we often take for granted.  We are reaping the harvest from the seeds they dropped during their bout of courage and dedication.  What a gift that keeps on giving, but it needs watering and cultivating! 

By the way, Memorial Day originated way back in the late 1800’s, but was enacted following the Civil War where many Americans started honoring the soldiers who lost their lives by decorating their graves.  Beautiful, isn’t it?  It wasn’t until 1971 that it was deemed a National holiday and celebrated as such through the passing of the National Holiday Act. 

“Those that die for a good cause… hover as a cloud of witnesses over the nation.”  Henry Ward Beecher.

Blameless Fallen Heros

Let us never forget our fallen heroes and their families.  After all, as John F. Kennedy stated,  “Ask not what your country can do for you — ask what you can do for your country.”  

Fallen Heroes, We Will Never Forget Your Sacrificial Service & We Thank You!

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Arise and Shine, Beautiful! Good Morning!

Blameless Isaiah 60.1 morning

Arise and Shine, Beautiful, for your light has come, and the glory of the Lord rises upon you!  ~ Isaiah 60:1

Good morning, Beautiful!   I don’t know about you, but isn’t it a beautiful affirmation and assurance knowing every day when we open up our eyes, there is someone so excited we’re finally awake solely because they just want to love on us and be in our presence? 

Oh, how we all desire to be loved like this.  That’s what makes this world flourish:  L-O-V-E!

We can’t forget about being serenaded by our Father God as He also rejoices over us (Zephaniah 3:17) singing, Good morning, Beautiful.  Arise and Shine, for your light has come, and the glory of the Lord rises upon you (Isaiah 60:1).

Can we say amazing love?

I’ve been sitting in literal quiet for the past couple of hours this morning with my comfy blankee and coffee.  I feel like the royal queen herself.  It seems so foreign and almost uncomfortable to be laying here in the still embracing the magical hymns orchestrated by the “happy birds” along with Mr. Owl’s in sync whoot, whoot… pause three seconds… whoot, whoot!  Talk about rhythm without missing a beat. 

I’m like a little girl going through the doors at Disneyland unrestrained when my frogs start chiming in with their chorus filled with ribbits and rolls.  This Acapella is priceless!  Yes, a little secret, I collect frogs.  I did say I was a tomboy who always wore a dress, so…

These birds have been doing the happy dance with their lyrical enticement the past few weeks.  I don’t know if it’s because spring has arrived and has ushered in all these amazingly beautiful colors and fragrances or it’s because the grounds and foliage are covered in a new coat of vitality and strength.  These luscious oak trees are flowering with both topical growth and tillage nourishment due to the sprinkling of Love from all the rain we’ve received here in Northern California this past year.

I will admit, even the oak trees seemed to be swaying back and forth atop their newly toiled ground while doing their happy dance yesterday in sync with the gentle breeze.  Or it could have been from the side effects of the anesthesia, but I’ll choose my childlike wonder.  I kind of know how they feel because with all this rain, they won’t have to constantly dig deeper and deeper to be sustained while having their roots nourished.

These hundred-year-old oak trees survive and thrive each year by trusting and remembering where their daily nourishment comes from.  They know how to instinctively reach out towards the light for their needed manna to survive while digging their roots deep for stability.  Since they have been blessed with an abundant provision, their roots can now focus on rest and restoration and gratitude for being sustained during their lack and depleted times.

Sitting in total silence while resting and not rushing or feeling frazzled and ready for a breakdown to get out the door as fast as I can is refreshing and a much needed change in my life.  I don’t want to be that woman who gets slammed into the rocks by the crashing Poppies, lupine, and oaks, near El Portal, CA, USAwaves of an overwhelmed life.  I want to be present and sing my own tune each day as I skip along with a childlike heart and grownup responsibilities. 

Maybe that’s why I felt guilty and somewhat uncomfortable for laying in bed enjoying the concert.  I still am, actually, as I write my good morning greetings to all of you Beautiful Beloveds.  Not that I need(ed) an excuse to lounge around in bed in my nightie, but I can actually admit had I not been recovering from a surgical procedure, I’m not sure who would have won the tug-of-war this morning.  Guilt versus Need?  Better yet, more like Guilt versus Gift?

Doctor’s orders that I lay low and push through the pain, but even if I wasn’t recovering from a procedure, why would I feel guilty about picking up and receiving God’s gifts for me today?  Every day He lays out these precious gifts knowing exactly what we will need.  Rest and restoration is quite a gift, to say the least!

God doesn’t just want us to see these gifts and pick them up, but He wants us to open them with delight and a childlike heart.  There’s nothing more exciting than opening up a gift with childlike expectations.

How about you, do you feel guilty if you take the time to be still and quiet and do absolutely nothing but be refreshed like myself?  Or are you one of those women I definitely envy and want to become more like that can relax her heart, body, soul and mind as healing overwhelms and restores her soul? 

I’m trying and I’m learning, as slow as it is.  Old habits are hard to break, but with God, all things are possible, right?  Let’s lift up our eyes to see the hands and feet of God reaching out towards us just to meet and love on us just the way we are.  Peace is a Divine gift!

Until next time…

Thank You For Being Beautiful You!

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Who Is Tammy Ingram?

Great Question…

Who is Tammy Ingram? Well, for starters, I’m a Beautiful Beloved (we’re all beautiful ) who was once a hot mess that has been saved by nothing short of God’s Amazing Grace! There is no one quite like me, that’s for sure, and when you get to know me rather quickly, you will find out that I’m just a girl who loves Jesus and wants to have fun with my faith, family, music, dance, and everything the beach offers.

I have absolutely no image to project or facade to hide behind here except to share through vulnerability and authenticity from someone who was once rejected in every sense of the word and now is truly loved, precious, pursued and derives her worth and value from what only my Lord offers.

One secret: I want EVERYONE to experience this Great Love Affair with the Lord God Almighty that is available by simply believing and to waltz through life with confidence and freedom knowing the love of our Father God. There’s no judgment or condemnation coming from me, just simply sharing life and strengths that this beautiful transformation from salvation offers.

I love Jesus! He is my rock, my world and my grand Sustainer. Without Him, I actually could not exist. I am sojourning this side of heaven being His treasured daughter and work of art, you know, His masterpiece (Ephesians 2:10). I love knowing I’m a masterpiece!

You can read my “Meet Ms. Tammy Ingram” page that was written to announce my presidency in my nonprofit organization called Blameless and Forever Free Ministries that I am organizing in California if you want the long and extensive worldly side about me. It does shed a bit more about me, but…

This girl just wants to have fun. Come join me as we sojourn this side of heaven celebrating each other!

Love and Blessings,
Tammy Ingram, a.k.a. F.I.N.E.  *:D big grin
P.S. A lot of people ask me about my acronym that is attached to my signature. Since you’ve read this far, I’ll share.
During my law enforcement chaplaincy academy tenure, the director explained that since us chaplains have a tendency to say we’re “fine” after experiencing and witnessing crises and traumatic situations as part of being on the first responder team, she was adamant in announcing what that acronym really meant in a humorous tone. Being the silly girl that I am, I adopted it and ran with it…
It means…
Freaked Out
Insecure
Neurotic
Emotional
Until next time…

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