Sunday, January 12, 2014

WEEKLY DEVOTIONAL: Letting Go of 2013 & Living in 2014

I would like to first start off by thanking everyone who has contributed to the growth and progress of this blog from the bloggers, guest bloggers, those who visit this blog, those who have "liked" the Facebook page, those who follow us on Instagram and Twitter, those who have applied our blog posts to your lives, and those who have passed the word along. We are extremely thankful and grateful for you!!! Thank you and continue to pray for us as we tackle on another year of pursuing the word of Christ -- it's not easy but we are all living testimonies that it is more than WORTH IT.

This week I feel like it is more than appropriate to focus on "LETTING GO" especially with 2013 behind us and 2014 ahead of us. We have 11 more months to make this year the BEST year yet! How can we accomplish this??? We can start by changing our attitudes like Jael said, but also by LETTING GO of any and everything that may have hindered us in 2013. The Bible makes it clear that when we hold onto old things, we block our future blessings. When I think of this topic I think of life as a drain. When we fail to remove old things or when we refuse to let things go our water supply (fresh blessings) cannot be easily accessed by us. They are temporarily on hold until we properly address what issues/people/things are blocking our water supply (blessings).

I have already claimed this year 2014 as the year of Peace and Prosperity and I'm expecting God to do some great things not only for my family and me but also for everyone who is connected to me. I'm claiming myself as a blessing magnet -- my prayers, my touch, my presence, my spirit, my talents will place individuals in a particular place to be blessed. I'm not sure how but I know that God will handle the rest I just have to be willing to put in my work. In order for me to expect so many great things from God I have to learn how to LET GO. I need to LET GO of things that I cannot change, I need to LET GO of things that I can change but should not change, I need to LET GO of things that are not beneficial to my life, I need to LET GO of things that are not perfectly aligned with my purpose (including any slight distraction that can serve as a possible detour). 

 Damita Haddon - No Looking Back

So How Do We LET GO in 2014?

1. Forgiveness

   Let all bitterness and wrath and anger and clamor and slander be put away from you, along with all malice. Be kind to one another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, as God in Christ forgave you (Ephesians 4:31-32)

   Probably the biggest obstacle that we have in terms of receiving our blessings is that we expect God to move in our lives when we struggle with forgiveness. Often times I thought that forgiveness was about forgetting what someone/something did to me but I was wrong which is why I probably delayed my blessings at one point. Forgiveness is not forgetting, forgiveness is understanding. Forgiveness is realizing the people are human and they make mistakes, but that everyone like you and I deserve a little compassion. The Bible tells us to forgive as much as 77 x 7 (Matthew 18:21-22) which basically means to forgive without ceasing. We can't expect God to bless us today if we're too stuck harboring the mishaps of yesterday. Let's forgive as freely as Christ forgives. LET IT GO

2. Acceptance

   Trust in the Lord with all your heart, and do not lean on your own understanding. In all your ways acknowledge him, and he will make straight your paths (Proverbs 3:5-6)

   Sometimes we have to accept things in life just as they are. We are not God. We are simply trying to be more like him everyday and in doing so we can't trust our human thinking (doing so won't get us very far). When it comes to people who constantly abuse us, mistreat us, or even use us sometimes we can't try to change people we must just accept people for who they are. In accepting them we must make a conscious effort to hold them up in prayer as well. That was something that I had to realize in 2013. There are so many times where I can replay a situation over in my head and refuse not to accept the final outcome (whether it be a relationship, an employment opportunity, or any situation) because it wasn't how I wanted it to happen. Things don't always go as planned and I need to start realizing that it is what it is, but it's not over until God says it's over. As with any self-help program the first step is acknowledging/accepting you have a problem. Acknowledge/Accept that problem/issue/outcome. Move on. LET IT GO.

3. Knowing Your Worth

   Not that I have already obtained this or am already perfect, but I press on to make it my own, because Christ Jesus has made me his own. Brothers, I do not consider that I have made it my own. But one thing I do: forgetting what lies behind and straining forward to what lies ahead, I press on toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus (Philippians 3:12-14)

   Just as a woman in general we often times struggle with our self-worth. I see it all of the time especially through the media. I just wish every woman (men too) would understand how valuable she is to the world and especially to God. For 2014 we have to start to reinforce our valuableness to the world because believe it or not, there are KINGS AND QUEENS in each and every one of us because we are CHILDREN OF THE MOST HIGH. When we know our worth, people/things cannot interfere with our purposes and they surely do not block our blessings. We are all striving to be more like Christ and if we keep our goal of being rewarded in Heaven in mind then we will not fall victim to situations that block our blessings. Some people/things look great and possibly even temporarily make us feel great, but that doesn't mean that they are valuable to us. In terms of relationships, if their plans do not coincide with your plans or somewhat align with your plans, then maybe they are not that valuable to us. Knowing your worth is knowing that you cannot entertain people who lack vision. Knowing your worth is also knowing that you are far too special to God to harbor old feelings about anyone/anything else. Greatness is in your Bloodline regardless of who is and/or is not in your life (God is your father) -- remember that! LET IT GO.

4. Trusting God

   For I know the plans I have for you, declares the Lord, plans for welfare and not for evil, to give you a future and a hope (Jeremiah 29:11)

   For 2014 let's start to trust God; not halfway, but 100%!!! Let's give God all of the glory and the honor. Let's trust his plans for our lives and pave the way for our blessings to flow. God's plan for your life will ALWAYS be far greater than any plan you originally planned for yourself and that's a fact! I can remember old relationships/friendships/people who came into my life and left. I remember being angry, sad, depressed, and even hardened at the fact that many of them left. During those dark times I clearly wasn't trusting God because I was so stuck in my feelings. If I knew back then what I know now, I would have handled those situations so much better -- I would have been smiling from ear to ear like I am now lol. Sometimes you have to look at situations from God's perspective. If something did not work out then maybe God had something better in store. If someone left you abruptly then maybe God was protecting you from something. If someone is causing you heartache and pain then just maybe God is preparing your heart for a greater love. Those moments where you lose all communication and contact (I'm talking about no interaction through social media, no bumping into them on the street, and no contact information for whatever reason) are completely cut-off are probably for your benefit. When things like this happen, God is usually giving you time to strengthen your faith to allow you to properly walk away from situations that no longer serve you any purpose. Sometimes the greatest thing that God can do for you is to remove someone/something from your life. Sometimes we just have to take that leap of faith and trust God with our hearts. Before you try to take matters into your own hands, try to trust God. LET IT GO.

5. Think Positive About the Future

   “Remember not the former things, nor consider the things of old. Behold, I am doing a new thing; now it springs forth, do you not perceive it? I will make a way in the wilderness and rivers in the desert (Isaiah 43:18-19)

   In order to reap the blessings of the seeds that we sow we have to start speaking things into existence. It may seem silly but it's not. It'll gradually build your faith in God and if it's God's will then you'll walk in your purpose. Think about your future when you're in certain situations that leave you bitter, heartbroken and/or confused. There will always be a light at the end of the tunnel. God doesn't want us to focus on old things or the things that hold us back. Believe that when things don't work out the way we see fit, that God is preparing our future. Just as the saying says, "This is Just a Setback Preparing Me For My Come Up." Speak positively over your future regardless of how your situation looks -- there is power in your tongue. LET IT GO.

This week let's start LETTING GO so that we can be fully prepared to receive our blessings!! I say this because I was reminded in bible study that when we come to God we are new creatures. That means that our slates are clean. God doesn't hold what we did yesterday against us. God doesn't hold what we did this morning against us. God doesn't hold what we did a second ago against us. That's not who he is. Doesn't it make sense for us to adopt his attitude and forgive and to LET GO. We deserve to live a life that isn't chained to the weight of the world. We deserve to live this kind of life because we have God on our sides. I encourage you to LET everything GO because we should not hold ourselves prisoners to a past that God has already pardoned us for. LET GO of the bitterness in your heart. LET GO of the anger. LET GO of the frustration. LET GO of the doubt. LET GO of those who do not add value in your life. LET GO of those who do not share your vision or any positivity. We can start by:

1. Forgiving Others
2. Accepting Situations/People for who they are
3. Knowing your worth and not letting any person/thing determine that
4. Trusting God with our situations because we cannot do it alone
5. Thinking Positively about the future -- Learn from the past and watch God work!

Israel Houghton - Moving Forward

Thank you Heavenly Father for always being who you are and never giving up on us. Even when we fall short you're still there. Thank you for your undying love. Today Lord we ask that you give us a heart of peace that will transcend throughout this year. You have already prepared the way before us and so we trust you to deliver on your promises. We ask that you prepare our hearts. minds, and souls to be ready for the blessings that you are about to bestow upon our lives, because we are expecting abundantly and exceedingly above all that we can imagine. In doing so, we are praying that you help us to let go. We want to let go of yesterday and focus on what you have prepared for us tomorrow. Today Lord we choose to forgive all who have hurt us. Today Lord we choose to accept people and situations for who and what they are. Today we choose to know our worth and refuse to let people determine it for us. Today we choose to trust you with all of our situations because you can see the beginning and ending. And Lord today we choose to speak positively over our prosperous futures of letting go! Lastly, Lord we ask that you continue to guide us and lead us in our purpose. We are excited about the future. Thank you for your unconditional love. We love you. Amen.


1 comment:

  1. Awesome Jamera!! Start the year off right and with a clean slate. Thank you!!