Tuesday, March 31, 2020

The Emotional Struggles of Downsizing

I kept going back and forth on whether I wanted to publish this post on moving from a bigger place to a smaller place. I tend to do that a lot, I think because it's difficult to be vulnerable on such a public platform. 

But then I thought that maybe there's someone else out there who needs someone to relate to. Life just isn't going your way. You thought at your age you'd be in a much better financially. You have to make sacrifices just to make ends meet. Friend, if this is you, you are not alone! 

One of the hardest sacrifices we had to make last year was downsizing, and that was (and is still) very emotional. 

An Emotional Move

I think most people can relate to the stress and just overall mental toll moving has on a person. The months leading up to it, packing, and despite how much I thought I prepared, once the time came, there was SOOO much to do in such a little time span.

Friday, January 31, 2020

Resources for Survivors of Abuse

Last week, I asked my blogging colleagues for resources to help survivors of abuse. I was blown away at how many people responded. I'm saddened at how many women have endured so much pain, but also encouraged that they're using their experiences to help other women escape dangerous situations and heal from their trauma. 
Here are some statistics on domestic violence
I am so thankful to never have gone through such an ordeal myself. And I've heard that their are pastors, leaders, and even counselors who have absolutely no experience with this give terrible and even life-threatening advice to victims, telling them they must stay and go back to their abuser. 
If you have ever received such advice, I want to say that this is absolutely NOT of God! Through out Scriptures we see God has a special place in his heart for women and children, especially those who have suffered. 

Wednesday, January 22, 2020

2 Tools You Need for Your Bedtime Routine

Creating a Bedtime Routine

For the past several years I've been convicted of sticking to a bedtime routine in order to get a good night rest and wake up ready to tackle my duties for the next day. Yet I lack the discipline to implement them. Yes, that's present tense because I do still lack the motivation and discipline to actually stick to them daily. BUT, when I do the tasks of my bedtime routine, I've noticed I fall asleep faster and stay asleep longer (that is as long as my children don't wake me up). The two most important tasks of my bedtime routine are :
  1. Journaling my thoughts and prayers, and
  2. Listening to the Abide YouTube channel as I fall asleep 

Why Journal?

Do you ever struggle to fall asleep because you have endless thoughts swarming through your mind?

Sunday, December 15, 2019

Why Even Close Friends Don't Satisfy Loneliness

My Past Struggles with Loneliness

6 years ago, I was desperate to have the number of friends that I do now. At that point in my life, I didn't have anyone to really confide in or pray with. Although my husband and I attended church and were part of a life group, I didn't connect with any of them outside of our weekly meetings.

Despite Having Friends, Loneliness Lingers

Today, I can barely keep up with the friends that I do have. So many friends that I consider dear to my heart, but I struggle to keep regular contact with them for various reasons, mostly lack mental energy (I am very much an introvert, so most interactions exhaust me), but to an extent lack of time.

Please don't mistake this for popularity, because I am quite awkward and definitely not very well known among my community circles. And I'm pretty sure those who do know me from afar don't envy having me as a friend.

Yet, despite having a full slate of friends, I still feel lonely at times.

Wednesday, May 22, 2019

Why I Hate the Term "Best Friend"

The Natural Desire for a Best Friend

I think people have a specific longing for a best friend. For another person we can relate to. Someone who knows our heart, our darkest secrets and brightest victories in life. Someone to help us get through life's storms. Even the most shy and introverted of us, I think if we're being honest, long for that. For most people, it's a position that cannot be filled by a spouse, parent or child. It has to be a friend.

I think the desire for a close, trusted friend is a natural longing that God wired into us.

Why I Hate the Term Best Friend

When I was growing up, whenever someone referred to their best friend, I always had a ping of jealousy. Even if it was a girl I didn't really care to know, if she referred to someone as her best friend, I felt left out. Alone. Excluded.

Monday, May 20, 2019

34 Bible Verses About Storms

I'm guessing pretty much everyone would agree that life is full of storms, trials, complications, and frustrations. Using The Strongest NASB Exhaustive Concordance, I compiled this comprehensive list of Scriptures about life's storms. I pray that God makes some of these verses stand out for you to memorize and use to endure whatever storms life blows your way.

A lot of these verses have great applications for facing storms in life, and offer hope despite doubt and fear, even in today's world, thousands of years after the divinely inspired authors wrote these verses. However, sometimes it's difficult to understand how it's applicable when you don't fully understand the context of the verse. So in parentheses next to several of the references, I've included little blurbs that attempt to give at least enough context to glean more value from the passage in regards to its real life application. (Some of the blurbs are taken from the headings of the NASB).

Thursday, May 9, 2019

My Top 5 Favorite Coping Mechanisms for Depression & Anxiety

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Carrying out this list of coping mechanisms does not come naturally to me. It takes effort for me to devote time and energy into something positive. My default nature is to allow my thoughts to control my actions, usually leading to just sitting around feeling defeated and sorry for myself.

If you can relate, let me encourage you that it really is worth the effort.

My Negative Coping Mechanism

If I must be honest, my go-to mechanism for coping with any unwanted feelings is TV. Getting lost in a screen of make-believe provides an immediate distraction from envy, jealousy, self-pity, loneliness and the plethora of other negative thoughts that enter my mind on a daily basis. 

Watching TV isn't a bad thing in and of itself. But it certainly isn't an adequate coping mechanism, and often times it causes even more unwanted thoughts (because even what is considered "clean TV" today stills contains a number of innuendos and indications that make it easy for the imagination to fill in the blanks and fantasize).

As God is slowly transforming me to become more like Him, He is helping me to discover better coping mechanisms for feelings of depression and anxiety. Here are my top 5 favorites:

Thursday, April 18, 2019

Hope in the Dark: Clinging to the Lord in the Midst of Trials

Guest post by Cailin Davis at Purposefully Portioned

When Trials Come

Trials are never enjoyable experiences. We all know that. 
But certain trials are worse than others.

Some trials are simply a source of irritation, such as discovering a flat tire or getting a leak in your roof. While others are a source of great pain, such as divorce, illness, or even death.

Minor trials do have a way of clouding our days and distracting us from our relationship with the Lord. But the major trials sometimes seem to block the out light completely.

It’s in the midst of the dark trials that God often seems absent at best and cruel at worst. And it’s underneath their consuming shadow that we often begin to question and doubt His love and goodness.