Learning to live.

Recently I celebrated my birthday. I again evaluated what living looks like. Last year, Being diagnosed with stage IV metastasized breast cancer raised a lot of questions inside my heart.

Questions like:
What have I accomplished in my lifetime?
Had I truly stepped out in those areas, I always thought I would have done so once I had time? What Does living look like?

With these questions swirling around my mind, I heard a word drop into my heart:

Living isn’t just crossing dates off a calendar and going from event to event or celebrating birthdays. Living is doing what you enjoy and doing and asking me (God) to join you. Do it for me, not the world.

Had I already forgotten these words? I always thought I needed to plug into a ministry of some kind for most of my adult life. And that mindset to ‘do’ ministry only causes me more internal demands. It is not that the “ministries” in themselves demand something from me; I place demands on myself.

That belief only made me scattered and frantic, trying to make a difference. This only caused me to be insecure with myself, and it became very evident to my husband and those around me.

Suppose three people speak into your life on the same day, each saying your value isn’t in performance. Then, maybe one should step back and reevaluate everything they are involved in.

This happened to me just this week. Even though the Lord dropped it in my heart last year, living isn’t striving; it’s being. Why is it so hard for me to learn this? Sure, we will one day give an account of what we did, good or bad. However, because the blood of Jesus redeems me, I’m unpunishable. What’s that I said? We are unpunishable.

This is a crazy mindset to get when we’ve been trained to follow the rules, and that emphasizes rules rather than relationships.

Again, I’m living with rules, to-do lists, and performance. When will we break this off of ourselves, or shall I say, when will I break free from this mindset?

Living my life. Who knows how many days we have here on earth? God knows, but I don’t. Last year, I started to declare that I will live out each day the Lord had written before the first day I breathed life.

Psalm 139:16 NIV – Your eyes saw my unformed body; all the days ordained for me were written in your book before one of them came to be.

Today, I am incredibly blessed with four sets of cancer-free scans, I get checked every three months.

The crazy thing is, was when I was going through treatment, I permitted myself to enjoy every day. Once my scans were clear, my mind was set on, It’s time to get busy!

And busy I got. A close friend recently asked me what things I’m involved in. After
I shared what I was passionate about and trying to do, and she asked me if I was Joan of Arc. She was serious with her question. I thought it was absurd for her to ask me that, but after honestly thinking about all I had mentioned, I realized this was ridiculous. Who do I think I am? And even felt somewhat embarrassed.

How did I again get my mind so entangled with performance? I never thought I placed my value in my title or what I did for employment. But now that I am not employed as the world defines it, I do not receive a paycheck, I feel embarrassed when people ask: what do you do?

What do I do? I am an author, and I am writing my third book. It is about what I learned, still learning, as I walk through the diagnosis I received last year. Many people would interpret my stage IV cancer as a death sentence, but in a sense, it was a gift for me to step back and reevaluate my definition of ‘living’ compared to how the Lord sees it. Today, I am stepping back again to remind myself of this.

The Lord encourages me to cultivate my creativity; I paint with words and am learning to paint with watercolors. It was even dropped in my heart to design and sell greeting cards to help pay for my writing endeavors.


We can get involved in many things, such as honorable causes and standing for righteousness. My sweet neighbor lady encouraged me to pick two things I enjoy doing and set my mind on doing those things without distractions (do only tasks that align with those two things). After three months, ninety days, see where you end up. If those two things you have been doing fulfill you, keep moving forward; if it doesn’t, pick two other things.

So here I am, fifty-nine years old and learning to live. Bottom line, when I meet God in heaven, I want him to say; Well done, my Georgia girl, Well done.

The liar pulls at the threads.

Today, as I proclaimed Psalm 91, I got a nudge in my Spirit when I declared verse five.  

I will never worry about an attack

of demonic forces at night,

nor fear a spirit of darkness

coming against me.

Then I heard: That this statement is only sometimes true for you.

I stopped and thought about why the words wouldn’t be true. 

Then I heard; you have allowed a negative imagination about the people in your life to cause you to worry. You think the darkness of the world has more influence on the mindset of those people than the Holy Spirit. You believe they’re blind in different areas of their lives.

That’s been double-minded. You pray prayers of faith, asking for MY Spirit to stir in the hearts and draw them to me. Yet you have these imaginations authored by darkness to hang out in the subconsciousness of your mind. 

You have partnered with the lie. The lie that darkness is stronger than the Spirit that lives in you. How can this be my child? You’ve allowed this doubt and fear to elevate above my name. Do you believe that darkness can rise above your prayers? 

1 John 4:4 NLT

But you belong to God, my dear children.

You have already won a victory over those people (antichrist),

because the Spirit who lives in you

is greater than the Spirit who lives in the world.

Either you believe or you don’t. It would be best if you repented of this because a house divided cannot stand. 

Severe that cord of iniquity with your BLOOD-bought authority. Cut it off your children, and cut it off your grandchildren. It (negative imagination) will no longer be in your family line.

As I was processing this, I could imagine myself as a piece of fabric with many small fine threads sticking out. These tiny threads hanging out look innocent enough, but they destroy the fabric when they get pulled on. 

Threads in a fabric are often interconnected with one another, and when the liar tugs on those threads, the fabric becomes strained. In some cases, the thread may even break if pulled too hard. It makes me wonder, what if I am one of those threads in the Lord’s fabric? I wouldn’t want to cause undue pressure on the other threads by allowing the deceiver to pull on me.

I went before the Lord repented, renounced agreement with the liar, and cut off the lie in my subconscious. As I did this, I saw myself as soft cashmere, warm, inviting, and comfortable. Thank you, Lord, for showing me this today. 

So, do you entertain any evil Imagination against the people in your life?

2 Corinthians 10:4-5

For the weapons of our warfare are not carnal, but mighty through God to the pulling down of strongholds, casting down imaginations and every high thing that exalts itself against the knowledge of God, bring every thought into captivity to the obedience of Christ,

Oaths, Vows, and Promises

Have we ever thought about the vows or oaths we’ve made in our lifetime? I have, and truthfully, I know that I have made vows and uttered oaths under my breath in ignorance.

This week in my reading, I paused and pondered lines found in the book of Matthew. Again, I reiterate that I am no Bible scholar, but these things come to my mind.

We are told not to take the name of the Lord our God in vain (Exodus 20:7). Reading in a book by Tony Evans, I learned that taking God’s name in vain is the opposite of hallowing it. The word “Vain” means empty or without meaning.

In the past, when I spoke, I swear to G-d…  you fill in the blank. I have not only taken God’s name in vain, but I have also unknowingly made a binding vow.

So, who knows about these vows and promises we have made? All of heaven (Deuteronomy 30:19). And not only heaven but also the accuser. Most of us know that we have an accuser who goes before the court of heaven to accuse the brethren; that would be us believers (Revelation 12:10).

Yes, we are covered by the Blood of Jesus, but what about our vows and oaths? Don’t you think those are binding? 

Sure, we can say; I didn’t mean that but read Matthew 5:33-37

Again, you have heard that it was said to an older generation, ‘Do not break an oath, but fulfill your vows to the Lord. ‘But I say to you, do not take oaths at all—not by heaven, because it is the throne of God, not by earth, because it is his footstool, and not by Jerusalem, because it is the city of the great King. Do not take an oath by your head, because you are not able to make one hair white or black. Let your word be ‘Yes, yes’ or ‘No, no.’ More than this is from the evil one.

I believe these verses support that oaths are binding even when spoken foolishly in everyday conversation or privately. A promise is a promise, and there are no loopholes in God’s eyes to allow a person to back out on their word.

What if our very own vows keep us from moving forward in different areas of our lives? What about those sayings: “I cross my heart and hope to die”? Or even those pledges and promises we agree with our hands on the Bible? Do you believe it is only binding with those in the room when saying such things? Nope, again, we have all of heaven witnessing our words.

I remember when I was just sixteen years old, I was in the hospital hysterically crying. The doctor who was caring for me got right up in my face and said: “why don’t you just grow up and stop your crying.” In that moment, I made a vow, under my breath, that I would never cry again. And up to here recently, I struggled to cry. When I felt the emotion rise inside me, a few tears would steam down my face but would stop quickly and even though I felt the need to cry, the tears would never come. Then I started to believe that I was some cold person because I couldn’t show my tears when such emotions were expected. Thinking everyone around me thought I was some heartless person, I would become uncomfortable and excuse myself.

Spoken from a child confused, scared, and without comfort I made this vow. And this one (1) vow has caused me so much pain because I was unable to process sadness.

I ask you, do you want the vows you’ve made without ‘thinking’ to be binding in the heavens court?

So! What do we do about all the foolish words we have spoken in ignorance? What about the vows we have made and consciously know we have not carried them out?

HERE ARE THE STEPS THAT I TOOK

I went before the Lord, knowing that I can only do so because of the righteousness of Jesus, confessed that I had irrationally made an oath without knowing what I was doing, and asked God for forgiveness.

God is faithful and just and will forgive our sins.

1 John 1:9 If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness.

Then I looked deeper and noted any lies the accuser had bound me with my vow. I was a cold heartless person.

In the mighty name of Jesus Christ, I just said I cut off this bondage off my life. Seeing that sins are passed down generationally (Exodus 20:5), I declare in Jesus’ name that the bondage is cut off my children and grandchildren (and on, if it applies to you).

I then confessed to God that I didn’t even know about all the reckless vows I had made over the years, but asked that God nullify them with the blood of Jesus.

I then ask the Lord to slow my mouth down, ask Holy Spirit to give me wisdom before speaking, and thank King Jesus for his redeeming blood. These steps are done by faith.     

So, let us all “think” before we utter a vow or pledge.

Psalm 15

Lord, who may dwell in your sacred tent?
    Who may live on your holy mountain?

The one whose walk is blameless,
    who does what is righteous,
    who speaks the truth from their heart;
 whose tongue utters no slander,
    who does no wrong to a neighbor,
    and casts no slur on others;
 who despises a vile person
    but honors those who fear the Lord;
who keeps an oath even when it hurts,
    and does not change their mind;
 who lends money to the poor without interest;
    who does not accept a bribe against the innocent.

Whoever does these things
    will never be shaken.

Learning to love.

Bob and I sat around a table with other couples the other night, making small talk. One person asked the couple sitting to her left how they met. Everyone enjoyed the shared memory, and the smiles on the couple’s faces moved my heart. When it came to “our” story, people at the table looked surprised when they learned that Bob had asked me to marry him shortly after we met and looked even more surprised when I shared my response and thought process about making a lifelong decision. I, of course, said yes, but in my head, I thought, What the hell, let us see how long this will last.

I admit that is an outrageous thought, especially when people do not understand my life’s “back story,” this is not the time or place for it. But I will say that I was taught that being female meant not having value other than to be at the beck and call of the men in her life, to serve them(.)

The only understanding of “love” that I had was performance earned. I felt my life was disposable and allowed people to treat me that way. Once the person who received my love was tired of me, I was tossed aside without remorse.

The word “love” was used too often when I was growing up without experiencing the love described in the Bible.

With that said, one could understand my thought process when giving Bob my answer. However, to my surprise, Bob showed me the love described in 1 Corinthians 13.

Verse 1-8: Love is patient and kind. Love is not jealous or boastful or proud or rude. It does not demand its own way. It is not irritable, and it keeps no record of being wronged. It does not rejoice about injustice but rejoices whenever the truth wins out. Love never gives up, never loses faith, is always hopeful, and endures through every circumstance.

I am not saying that I experienced these attributes every day of the thirty-six-plus years we have been married. Because Bob didn’t experience this love growing up either, it wasn’t modeled to him.  

So, how can I explain our being together this long?

Mentors.

People placed in our lives who taught and showed us what love looks like and prayed for us. And most of all, the Word of God (Bible).

There are a lot of people in the world today who think that God is in Heaven, ready to harm, hit, and curse anyone who does not follow the “rules” or toss them out when they quit performing. This does not describe who God is. As I have explained before, GOD is LOVE.

Bob desired that our marriage would look different than the ones he watched his parents have. But it wasn’t until we both learned that God loves us (first) that our relationship started to grow.

A mentor once described it this way: Look at a triangle. Bob, imagine yourself on the bottom left corner, Georgia on the right, and love (God) on the top. By keeping your eye on love moving toward Him, what happens to the lines on the left and right? They come together.

If you can relate to my ‘back story’ and want to learn about love (God) as described in the Bible, pray for a mentor who knows GOD and is willing to invest in your life. Bob and I were (still are) blessed with such wonderful mentors.

With that said, Happy Valentine’s Day everyone.

My journey this morning.

The first thing I did upon getting up was declare that I could see and am 100% healed in my body. After saying this, I realized that I allow some ailments to continue to harass my quality of life. Then a question was dropped in my heart: Can salt water and fresh water be together yet separate?

This led me to the passage found in James chapter three. Most of us have quoted verse eleven: Can fresh and salt water flow from the same spring? The first few lines of this chapter show us that this analogy refers to our tongues or words.

Wanting more understanding, I decided to read at the beginning of chapter three, and verse two caught my attention.

Anyone who is never at fault in what they say(a) is perfect (mature), able to keep their whole body in check (b).

(a) 1 Peter 3:10 For whoever would love life and see good days must keep their tongue from evil and their lips from deceitful speech.

(b) James 1:26 Those who consider themselves religious and yet do not keep a tight rein on their tongues deceive themselves, and their religion is worthless.

Of course, I want to see good days, and my whole body healed and functioning as original design. However, I know that my words do not always agree with God’s words, especially if I am saying I can’t see, but on the other hand, I am saying that I am 100% completely healed; I am just waiting for it to manifest in my body.

I am waiting for God to do something, but HE has already done it. He is waiting for me to “partner” with Him.

I had a stirring in my spirit about who I have been partnering with; asking Holy Spirit for wisdom, I realized there was something that I had to repent for and break a partnership off with my blood-bought sword. 

I won’t go into the details of the moment highlighted to me, but it was when I snickered about a comment about another person. Though I didn’t say the words that poked fun at this individual, nor was he even around to hear the sarcastic remarks. It is what I empowered with my agreement.

Poking fun – to mildly taunt or mock someone or something. Bully. Torment. Ridicule. To be Contemptuous, scornful, sneering, sardonic.

Some might think I am splitting hairs here and shouldn’t be so serious. But God’s word is HIS word, scripture, and I need to apply it to all areas of my life.

Simply put, we are to follow the example that Jesus showed us. Do we read about how a crowd was ‘poking fun’ at another person, and Jesus joined in on the mocking? No.

My knowledge of the scripture (not that I am a scholar), Jesus was more and likely the center of the mocking and ridicule. Wasn’t the crowd sneering when Jesus was being scourged?

I end this by saying if I expect the word of God to work for me, I need to thoroughly look at his word to understand how to apply it and align with it.

Today, I see more clearly that another veil (layer) of deception has been removed.