Authenticity Encircles Authenticity

As you become authentic, you will begin to see and be drawn to others who are authentic. As you begin to walk this road, you may also realize some people in your life seem to walk away or even fade away. Realize this for what it is, and embrace it; be okay with it.

Don’t judge them for not continuing in your journey. Don’t slander them for not being loyal and true. Don’t even worry about asking too many questions of why? Or why not?

Some weren’t meant to travel this same road with you. Some don’t wish for the changes you’ve chosen to indulge like a sweet dessert. Others just aren’t where you are and will never understand the transformation until they themselves come to that crossroad in their own lives…and that is okay!

Be you. Be authentic. Encircle others who are authentic. Let go of that and who you must.

Live! … And don’t just survive in living…

THRIVE in your authentic self!! 💕

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Knowing You and Letting Go

When you’ve gotten to know you, only then, can you let go of who you are not. Because this is such a simple statement, this may sound silly or even a little cliche; yet, it is so very true. When you don’t truly know who you are, you can’t rightly let go of who you might have been pretending to be.

Often, when we start pretending to be something, or someone, we’re not, we lose our true identity. We get lost in the fantasy, the struggle and the desire to be that other person, and that facade will become a false reality for as long as we will live it. It becomes a place of comfort and security while, in reality, the fallacy eats away at our very being.

Everyone around us can see it. Anyone who gets close and is tuned into reality will recognize the fake for what it truly is, and more often than not, those people will eventually remove themselves from our orbit without us ever realizing why they left. To me, this is one of the saddest places to be in life, because that person is so wrapped up in their own lies that he/she can’t even recognize reality until the painful truth slaps them in the face either by tragedy, self-harm or broken relationships that bring about a sense of desperation for truth.

So, tune into the real you. Stare hard into that mirror in the morning and be that the little boy on Hook, who wiped Peter’s face until he could find Peter Pan. Find YOU. Embrace YOU, and learn to love YOU. Then, you will become authentic, and others will be drawn to that new you. 💕

Knowing YOU

I’ve been sharing for the last few days on the subject of authenticity. This is such a great word, and everybody is better off when we all embrace it to it’s fullest. Yet, as I posted those blogs, I started thinking how maybe some people resist authenticity, not necessarily, because they like to be fake, but rather, because they don’t really know themselves.

It made me think of the movie, Runaway Bride, when Julia Roberts’ character has to go “find herself” before she can commit to what she’s purposed to do. (Trying not to give any spoilers here! 😜) Now, I’m not a big advocate of dropping all your commitments to go “find yourself,” because I think, too often, this is used as a cop-out to simply be lazy or rebellious toward the commitments you’ve made. However, my point is this…

You can never be authentic until you truly know and embrace who you are!*

So, get to know that person staring back at you in the mirror every morning. Stare hard. Stare long. Ask questions and answer them, even when they’re hard ones that scream for honesty.

What are my likes? What are my dislikes? Why do I laugh? Why do I cry? What do I believe? For what, in what, or in whom, do I hope? In whom, or what, do I put my trust? When am I the most scared? When am I the most lonely? When am I the most confident and why?

There are a gazillion questions to ask and answer. This may take awhile. Even if it takes the rest of your life, don’t stop asking and never stop answering.

That’s the only way you can truly realize who you are. Draw out that heart within. Reach down deep and find the depths of your soul. Is it shallow, or are the measures endless and complex? True self-evaluation and self-analyzation helps to recognize, acknowledge, challenge and change those things that need alteration and improve those things which are just needing tweaking or strengthening.

Having a mentor, a life coach or just a truth speaking friend will also help you to find yourself and be the “true you,” but these thoughts will be held for another day.

Now, get out there and get to know YOU; so, you can let that authenticity blossom!! 😉

*Note to the wise: the real truth in who you are can, actually, only be found when you come to know the Creator of who you are, and that, my friend, will be a full post for another day very soon; however, you can start on that path of discovery today: Proverbs 9:10; John 1:1; John 3:16

A Trade Off

Sometimes, I have to remember that I don’t have to continue in my weakness, thinking somehow, it’s going to magically turn into greatness. When the Scripture says, “I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me,” (Philippians 4:13) that’s what it meant!

I am only strong when I admit my weakness and allow Christ to rule and reign in my heart AND in my actions! I am only refreshed when I throw my weakness into His greatness! I am only encouraged and able to carry on when I release my pride and stop pretending to be strong and realize I am only strong because of Christ living inside of me!

Thank you, Jesus, I don’t have to muster up some pretend faith to be a valiant warrior when I am just a truly, the warrior is a child. Thank you for trading my weakest moments with Your strongest power! Thank you that you are able! You are faithful, and You are strong! ❤️

The Weight of the Broken

So many broken hearts all around me today. The weight of it all tugs on my own to weigh me down. My mind swirls with the endless possibilities, the various scenarios, circumstances, and outcomes.

One heart is trampled after years of devotion, self-sacrifice and provision. Deceit and lies run rampant. Another is captivated by mistrust and fear, threatening to become the self-fulfilling prophecy through the tears. Still another is full of anger, bitterness and rage while pretending to love and adore a fantasy fabricated within the mind.

Oh dear Lord, how do we help them? How do we stop the bleeding? Can we even intervene? The pain is so great. The brokenness seems beyond repair. Is there any glimpse of hope to be found?

The questions thrash about like tornadoes through my head. Twisting and turning without end. We look to a book, a counsel, a song or a situation to correlate, to somehow make sense of this unfathomable reality.

Yet, no answer can be found in the carnal. No solution can be brought forth in mere words. No ears have the capacity to hear the true heartbeat of the broken.

The only answer is Jesus. The only shred of hope is Him. There is no guarantee of tomorrow. There is no promise of reconciliation, or even redemption, without His mercy and grace.

It may sound too cliche. It may sound like just another punchline, but I have found He is the only source of Truth. He is the only anchor that holds. He is the only Rock that stands when the whole world falls apart, and you’re wondering if you can even take the very next breath.

I can’t even walk without holding onto His hand.

He is all I need. ❤️

Like a Bomb or a Flower?

I saw this photo the other day, and it made me think about its meaning…

A flower is…

Beautiful. Delicate. Created by the Master Designer. Needs water, soil and sunlight to grow and survive. Some grow perfectly on the windowsill while others flourish in a great garden. Some attract bees, insects and spiders, but most all invite a gentle touch, a sweet smile and a deep inhale and exhale of stress relief. Some open up with beauty in the early morning hours and close up to shield their fragility as the sun sets. Some can weather the worst of storms and then be crushed by the tiniest of hands.

Flowers can represent friendship, love, jealousy and celebration. They can bring healing with their fragrance and comfort with their beauty. They can bring joy to brighten a home and peace to a grieving soul. They have even been known to bring healing to an ailing body and peace to a tearful spirit.

A bomb is…

Intense. Intriguing. Resilient and steadfast for the moment. Needs human hands to be created, moved or altered. Needs nothing to remain as it is, only a man’s touch to flip the switch. Once set, it is just as fragile as a flower under a combat boot. Some are extremely complex. Some are too simple to be described. Some are designed by madmen, while others are constructed by a genius of authority. Some are made to bring harm, while others are invented to protect the innocent and defend the weak.

Bombs can represent danger, fear, desolation and destruction. They can also present honor, courage and perseverance through the darkest of nights. They can’t bring healing, but the when used properly, they can bring deliverance from fierce enemies. They can’t bring love, but when executed with precision, they can bring guardianship against terror. They can’t bring peace, but when stored and presented with life, liberty and pursuit of happiness in the forefront, they can create almost a holy hush that no one dare to unravel.

As a woman, I will choose to be both, a flower and a bomb. Yet, the only way to be perfected in each of these is to be submitted to and placed within the hands of Almighty God. For, He is the only entity who controls the air I breathe and protects the ground on which I walk. He is the only Deity who can bring gentle restoration to the bones and a fierce security to the mind, all in the same nanosecond. Within my own strength, I can be too breakable and too dangerous for anyone’s well being; yet, with His divine wisdom, I, and all those around me, are safe within His grasp, because of His eternal love, grace and justice.

Be Resilient Like a Chicken Nugget

Friends and I were laughing as one shared the hilarious story of “slinging food” at her children on a Wednesday night on the way to church, because as a school teacher, she leaves school at 4:45, goes down the road to pick up child #4 drives across town to pick up her other day three children and husband from home, drives through fast food to get everyone chicken nuggets and make it on time to Wednesday night church! 😂 We all laughed till our sides hurt as she shared all the “mom tactics” to having children clothed and in their right minds with a dinner in their tummies, and her own self in her right mind; so, they could behave and have fun while in the evening program. One of the statements she made was, “Let me tell you. Those chicken nuggets are resilient! They bounce off windows and don’t splatter. They are easy to handle for little fingers. You can get the 20 for $2.50 and have change to spare, too!”

It was such a comical moment, and, honestly, I’m not a great fan of chicken nuggets, but our kids loved them in their early years, and that simple statement made me start thinking…

Chicken Nuggets ARE resilient! We could learn a lot from that little nugget…

1. They are crunchy on the outside and soft and juicy on the inside. It’s ok to have a little tough skin to survive through life’s ups and downs, but be sure to stay soft on the inside. Keep your heart humble and your soul full of grace and love. Don’t be so tough on the outside that you harden all the way through. Nobody wants to encounter all that.

2. They don’t fall a part easily. In this day and age, we’ve got to have a little strength to who we are to survive. We can be, and need to be, cushy soft on the inside to bear the fruit of love, joy, peace, patient and with those other fruit of the Spirit. However, all the hyper-sensitive, can’t disagree with someone for fear of “hate speech” actually makes us a weak people and a crippling nation. Toughen up, people. Be resilient and live life full of strength and grace!

3. They come in large quantities for inexpensive prices. Be able to give the good parts of yourself away to lots of people and don’t be too demanding of what they give back. Now listen, I’m not giving you permission to be used and abused. If you tend to be a doormat, please understand, this point isn’t for you. What I’m talking about is giving your love in a hug, an encouraging word or time spent with a friend. I’m talking about sharing laughter, making a memory or spending time with those you love. Share these things in large quantities, and don’t be demanding of a condition to be met for you to share it. People need to know you care.

4. You can’t eat just one. Be the kind of person who is contagious, magnetic and engaging to those around you. Be the sort of friend others aspire to be. Be the type of leaders others seek after. Be the person of whom others just can’t get enough.

5. They are great in just about any sauce or condiment. Diversify your tastes, your likes and your knowledge. Extend your horizons. Learn something new. Try, taste, or even listen to something different than before. You never know, you might like it, and you may even find a new friend along the journey.

Yes, It Matters

So many hurting souls, wondering if anyone cares. So many broken hearts, believing no one is there. So many desperate minds, consumed with empty thoughts. So many lonely bodies, searching for someone who can’t be bought.

Too many children losing their innocence in the mire. Too many mommas overwhelmed with competition and strife. Too many daddies forgetting where their home is. Too many elders forsaking legacy for the abyss.

They ask if their heart is worthy. They desire for more and get less. They pursue the instant pleasure, never realizing their prison cell. They seek for answers, for value, for meaning. They receive nothing but words of demeaning.

Hear me now.

I scream it from the mountaintops. I write it on the wind. I paint it in the sunset. I sing it through the waterfall.

Your soul matters to the One who created. Your heart is full of strength and value. Your mind can, by Him, can be easily understood. Your body can be full of vitality and livelihood.

Hear me now.

Yes, It matters.

YOU matter.

Penned – MG – 7/02/18

In An Instant

Too often, we take for granted what we have right before our eyes. We get into a routine, and we expect everyone who’s in our little orbit to always be there tomorrow. We expect to wake up in the morning, and everything be the same.

We have no guarantees.

All we know can be gone in one instant.

Car wrecks, terrorist attacks, earthquakes and floods happen in the blink of an eye. Breakups, broken promises, angry flare ups and heartaches may take days in the making but take only a moment to occur. Crushed dreams, destroyed relationships, words unspoken, volumes that can never be erased come in a split second.

We have no guarantees.

All we know can be gone in one instant.

Are you ready to say goodbye? Do you cherish the one you’re with? Will you make the moment last? Could you build the memories of a lifetime?

We have no guarantees.

All we know can be gone in one instant.

Don’t be one day too late…

Penned – MG – 7/2/18

Look Inside

You wonder why she did it. She had a man. She had the money, and she had the babies. What more could she need? But what’s inside, we never see.

You ask why he pulled the trigger. They were innocent. They had dreams, and they hoped for a brighter tomorrow. Why the hate that he would breed? But what’s inside, we never see.

You question why so many are broken. We search for an answer. He squanders his years on sex, drugs, power and an alibi. She relinquishes her rights for deceit, slander, lies and control. How are they consumed with what others have decreed? But what’s inside, we never see.

Inside is a hopelessness. Broken hope brings the promise of life, when below the surface, the reality is death. Lost hope promises beauty, strength and all riches; yet, behind the veil lies only destruction. Forgotten hope declares a better future will surely come; although its well worn path is only a graveyard of mud and bones.

Come beyond with me, and I will show you a better way. I will show you life in abundance, joy overflowing and hope everlasting. Come inside, and you will see.

Penned – MG – 6/6/18