Saturday, April 25, 2015

You Are Beautiful!

Women have it tough! Between all of the unrealistic expectations we're bombarded with in the movies, on tv and magazine covers, plus the ones cast upon us by our own circles, it's no wonder why we have such a hard time living up to those expectations.  We're too light, too dark, too short, too tall, our hair isn't long enough, thick enough, the list goes on and on.  The beauty and fashion industry has capitalized on this.  According to the article Trends in the Fashion Industry Over The Past Ten Years, the author states: "By spending billions of dollars exhorting anti-aging products and using super-skinny, air-brushed models and celebrities to pitch them, the beauty industry has created an ideal woman in the minds of anyone who watches TV or picks up a magazine.  The ideal woman is thin with flawless skin, no matter her age. And she has drawerfuls of products that miraculously make her that way."  Even for those who have a pretty healthy self esteem it can be a challenge to maintain it.  But I assure you, it's not impossible.

The first step to seeing ourself as beautiful is to see ourselves how God sees us. In Genesis 1:27 it says "So God created mankind in his own image, in the image of God he created them; male and female he created them." We were created in His image!!! He wasn't just the maker, He was the mold. And because He is beautiful, we are beautiful. It's kind of like when you see that good looking couple and think "wow, they would make cute babies." Logically, because of good genes the child of an attractive couple would also be attractive. In the same way, we as children of God bare the same genes of our Father, of our Creator, in who's image we were created. 

Secondly, it's so important that we understand the true concept of beauty not just for ourselves, but for our daughters. What are we teaching them true beauty is? Are they seeing us obsess over the latest and greatest in fashion or cosmetics while never seeing us obsess over seeking God's presence? Let's pause for a moment to read what it says in 1 Peter 3:2-4, "Do not let your adornment be merely outward---arranging the hair, wearing gold, or putting on fine apparel---rather let it be the hidden person of the heart, with the incorruptible beauty of a gentle and quiet spirit, which is very precious in the sight of God." This passage doesn't forbid or condemn the practice of maintaining our outward appearance. But it does tell us that the emphasis shouldn't be placed on it. In other words, keep it in perspective ladies. Remember that true beauty comes from within. I love how the apostle Peter refers to it as "incorruptible beauty"; the beauty of a gentle and quiet spirit. See this beauty isn't about appearance, it's about character. 

This is why I can honestly say that I have the most BEAUTIFUL friends I could ever ask for. They are the women and mothers I strive to emulate. When I look at them all I see is beauty. When I am with them I know I am in the presence of beauty. Not only because they possess qualities of external beauty, but because there is an incorruptible beauty that dwells in them and radiates from within. And I want to be around that as much as possible, just in case it's contagious. It just infuriates me when we do anything less than encourage and motivate each other. We as children of God have to be careful of not falling victim to the ignorance of this world. That if we're not a size 4, or a certain height then we're not beautiful. We must stop tearing each other down and rather build each other up. We need to ask God to allow us to see as He sees in order to love as He loves. Remember, if He is beautiful and we were created in His image, that makes us beautiful too. 

I encourage everyone to ask God for His vision, to see through His eyes. Take inventory on when it was the last time you told someone they were beautiful. Whether it be your wife, your sister, your friend or your mother, anyone. Chances are it's been a pretty long time since they've heard it. Those words said in an instant have the power to break down barriers of self loathing and worthlessness that have been there for years. Rather than using our words to destroy each other, let's use them to build each other up. You never know the difference you can make in someone's life, or the difference it could make in yours. Remember, the world we create today is the one our children will live in tomorrow, so let's make it a kind one.

Love and blessings,


Thursday, November 28, 2013

A Day of Thanks

Thanksgiving Day. A day of love, family and reflection. A day where most of the country stops the hustle and bustle of their busy lives and spends it with their loved ones.  Of course we all know Thanksgiving Day should be every day... but today is a great day to reflect over the past year, congratulate yourself on goals met and start setting some new ones. What are you thankful for? Perhaps you just got a promotion, or a new house. Maybe you got married this year, or became a new parent. Or maybe your year hasn't unfolded quite as you'd envisioned. You may have been laid off, or been given an unexpected diagnosis from your doctor, maybe even had your heart broken. It may not seem so now, but you can be grateful for that too. 

We've all heard Psalms 23. It's one of my absolute favorite chapters in the Bible. But like many things that we see, hear and do on a regular basis, we tend to take it for granted. "The Lord is my shepherd, I shall not want..."(v.1) You may be thinking, "I know, I've heard it a million times, I get it. He takes care of me." But take a few minutes today to really reflect on that entire chapter. You may have heard it all your life, but you have also breathed all your life and still need that next breath of oxygen to live as much as you did the day you were born. Lamentations 3:22-23 tells us, "The steadfast love of the Lord never ceases, His mercies never come to an end. They are new every morning, great is Your faithfulness." The word of God is life. When we take the time to reflect on its truths, it, like the oxygen we breathe, gives us life. It's the one book that we could read every day and take something different from it each and every time. 

Back to Psalms 23. The first verse in itself could be a whole study! I shall not want! Meaning not only does He know and meet my needs, but He knows my needs even before I do! That's God! Before you lost your job He was already paving the way for your next one. Before you became ill, God already had your cure. Before your last relationship fell apart, God was already preparing the one who would take their place. When God is your shepherd, you shall not want! That alone brings me so much peace. If I as a parent find joy in providing the needs for my children, and am constantly thinking ahead to make sure they continue to have their needs met, how much more does our Heavenly Father find joy in meeting our needs? I could almost feel Davids conviction when he says "I SHALL NOT WANT." Period. If the Lord is my shepherd and I allow Him to lead me, instead of me trying to stray and be the one to call the shots, He will supply my EVERY need. And He will do it in a way so much better than I could have ever dreamed it for myself.

For your ease and convenience I'm going to post it right here, so you can read and meditate on it today. Maybe even do a few internet searches on it. Quick tangent: It was pretty annoying when I did my initial search on "The Lord is my shepherd". The first 2 search options were: the lord of the rings and the lord of the flies. Seriously? If the world sought God the way we were created to then it wouldn't be in the state it's in. But back to topic. I've included the entire chapter below. I encourage you to take 5 minutes (or more) from your fb/ig/twitter time and maybe after you've eaten and are digesting that delicious meal, you can also digest on the truths of the passage below. Reflect on how relevant it has been for you and how you believe it will be for you in the future. 

Have a wonderful Thanksgiving with your friends, family and loved ones, and remember to thank the One who blessed you with so much love.

Be blessed! 


Psalms 23
The LORD is my shepherd, I shall not be in want. He makes me lie down in green pastures, he leads me beside quiet waters, he restores my soul. He guides me in paths of righteousness for his name's sake. Even though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil, for you are with me; your rod and your staff, they comfort me. You prepare a table before me in the presence of my enemies. You anoint my head with oil; my cup overflows. Surely goodness and love will follow me all the days of my life, and I will dwell in the house of the LORD forever.

Monday, October 28, 2013

Joy cometh in the morning

How do you deal with disappointment? I'm not talking about finding out the sale item you went to the store for is sold out or someone else getting to an awesome parking space at the mall just before you could. I'm talking about realizing that something you had your heart set on, invested your emotions on, clocked lots of prayer hours on... didn't turn out how you thought, or hoped it would? Maybe at first you find yourself in a state of shock unable to completely absorb the scope of your disappointment. But what happens when that shock wears off?

I've learned that disappointment is a part of life, but it doesn't have to rule your life. A good friend once told me after having gone through a disappointment of my own "Mope about it today, you might as well since you've wasted most of your day doing it. Feel mad, sad, disappointed ... But after tonight you have to let it go. Tomorrow is a new day." That advice changed me forever. It was like a light bulb went on inside of me. See before that moment I felt bad about feeling bad. Like if I was disappointing God by not being joyful no matter what the circumstance. But it was in that moment I realized it's ok to feel, to be human.

The Bible says in Psalms 30:5 "Weeping may endure for a night, but joy cometh in the morning." That kind of joy only God can give. He doesn't want puppets, he wants a relationship with each and every one of us. Like a parent who lovingly and carefully picks up a child after falling and scraping their knee, our Heavenly father wants to heal our hearts and mend our souls. For some of us there's nothing like going through these tough times to draw us closer to Him.

If you find yourself disappointed by someone, a circumstance, or even yourself, and can't understand how God could let it happen, it's ok. God never asked us to understand Him, He just asked us to trust Him. Know that this terrible feeling won't last always, and that joy will surely come in the morning. Allow yourself to feel, and to heal. But when you wake up tomorrow, shake it off and say what David said in Psalms 28:7: "The Lord is my strength and my shield! My heart trusts in Him and He helps me. My heart leaps for joy and with my song I praise Him." 
Be blessed!

Tuesday, July 30, 2013

For God so loved you, because you are His world!

Hi guys! It's been a week since my last post. This was something I was inspired to write. Hoping someone is touched by the message. I know I was.

We've all heard the verse "For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten son, that whosoever believeth in Him shall not perish but have everlasting life." John 3:16. Sounds amazing, but what does it mean?

One of my all time favorite shows as a kid was "Little House On The Prairie". Don't laugh. We all have skeletons in our closet. Haha. Even to this day I get super excited when I happen to catch it on tv. Okay okay I don't happen to catch it, I watch it every day I can on the Hallmark channel from 5-8pm. As a matter of fact I'm watching it now and proud of it! lol It's something I'm happily passing on to my kids to enjoy, since there are so few programs out there that display Christian values the way Little House does. I get so excited when it comes on that it makes the kids shout "yay, little house on the prairie!!" And there is just something about that Charles Ingalls. Lol. Sure he's handsome but it's more than that. There's something about him that when he shows up in the middle of a crisis that would make you say, man, everything is going to be alright, because "Pa" is here. I don't know how he's gonna do it, but he's gonna make it all ok!

I was never one to feel sorry for myself, but at times I would get sad that I didn't have a relationship like that with my dad. I always wondered what it would be like. It doesn't matter how strong we think we are, or how much we may think we have it together, a fathers love is irreplaceable. But one day I realized that I had the best Father of all looking over me from the day I was born, and who will there with me even after death.  Regardless of how present or absent your father is, you need God too. You need Him whether you realize it or not. He gave it all so that you could have life, and have it abundantly.

I don't know what you're going through in your life right now, but I can guarantee you, He is the answer. Like Charles Ingalls, He's ready to save the day. He loves you so much that He gave it all just for you! I challenge you to seek Him, to truly reach out to Him. It's not hard, He's right there next to you. Just talk to Him. Tell Him what's on your mind. Romans 5:11 says: "So now we can rejoice in our wonderful new relationship with God because our Lord Jesus Christ has made us friends of God." Wow! God, who made the heavens and earth by merely speaking it into existence, who placed each star in the sky and placed the sun with such exactness so that life on Earth would even be possible, who put red in the ruby and blue in the ocean, is the very same God who wants to be your friend, your best friend. He is the ultimate BFF! So what are you waiting for? I can go on and on, but there is nothing like experiencing it for yourself. This is what He created us for, to have a relationship with us. Find a quiet place, shut out all distractions, and talk to Him. I guarantee you He will not only listen, but speak to you as well. 

I leave you with Psalm 73:28 "But as for me, how good it is to be near God! I have made the sovereign Lord my shelter, and I will tell everyone about the wonderful things you do." David had an amazing relationship with God. But it wasn't exclusive to David. God longs to have that kind of relationship with you too! Just open the door to your heart and invite Him in. It will be the best decision you'll ever make.

Be blessed! 

Patricia Lynn

Wednesday, July 24, 2013

17 Though the fig tree does not bud

    and there are no grapes on the vines,
though the olive crop fails
    and the fields produce no food,
though there are no sheep in the pen
    and no cattle in the stalls,
18 yet I will rejoice in the Lord,
    I will be joyful in God my Savior.
19 The Sovereign Lord is my strength;
    he makes my feet like the feet of a deer,
    he enables me to tread on the heights.

Habakuk 3:17-19

I can't think of a better way to inaugurate my blog than by citing this verse. We can all relate to confronting trials and tribulations in life. Some of us may have even had to deal with more than our fair share. But this blog is not about feeling sorry for yourself. Just the opposite! It's about remembering that God is always there to hold your hand through those tough times. It's about experiencing peace through your storms, a peace that surpasses all understanding. It's about rejoicing in Him when everything around you tells you to give up in despair. 

2 Corinthians 4:18 says: "So we fix our eyes not on what is seen, but what is unseen, since what is seen is temporary, but what is unseen is eternal." Your human eyes can only see what is before you, but your spiritual eyes can see so much further! The prophet Habakuk understood this concept very well. Though my human eyes may see no grapes on the vines, no food in the fields, no sheep in the pen or cattle in the stalls, my spiritual eyes see that the Lord is my strength, and for that I will be joyful and will REJOICE IN HIM!! Love that! So powerful!

I truly hope and pray that this blog will be a blessing to all who read it. There will be days devoted to sharing a biblical passage that may have impacted me in a special way. Other days (brave days I'll call them) I will get up close and personal, and share personal experiences from my past, present, and hopes for the future. I'm sure this will be a constant work in progress, just like me, just like we all are. 

In closing, keep singing your joyful song because no matter what life throws your way, God is good and His mercy endureth forever!

Be blessed!

Patricia Lynn