Bio and Booking Information

Wednesday, May 27, 2015

God isn't Santa Clause

As I laid in bed before daylight this morning I didn't want to get up and I couldn't go back to sleep. I tossed and turned and decided to spend the next few quiet moments taking some much needed things to Jesus.  I asked for some pretty bold things, repented of some things and while I was talking to Him I thought how I must sound like a broken record at times.  I picture God saying "well here comes Holly again with the same thing she asked me for just a few days ago".  Now I know that God isn't like this but when I am asking Him for the very same things over and over I often wonder what He thinks.  I am learning a few things about my prayer life as well as prayer in general and I want to share with you. 

#1 It's not the words that you use that move the hand of God - 

Matthew 6:7

"When you pray, don’t babble on and on as people of other religions do. They think their prayers are answered merely by repeating their words again and again."

When we pray with empty words and promises to do something in order to get God to bend to our request we have made it about us. It's easy to pray for other people because we want them to change rather than loving them where they are and praying for our words, actions and lives to be an instrument of hope and change in their lives. Praying with intent of allowing God to do what He wants and wills is an act of surrender. Prayers laced with surrender takes the power out of your hands of trying to manipulate and rightfully places God in charge no matter the outcome.  When we pray for others we essentially stand in the gap for them therefore we must make sure our motives in praying reflect that. I never want my prayers to sound like a never ending song. I have so many women surrounding me that are numb, or their marriage seems to be failing apart along with others who have no desire to pursue Jesus any longer based on what seems His inactivity.  I believe that when we let our words reflect the desperation of our hearts God reaches in and our hearts begin to shift.  Pray with words that are not rooted in religion but instead rooted in the very love you have for Jesus. 

2. Prayer is essential to your growth

I want nothing more than to see my church grow, to lose weight, to get a new car and to have my girls grow in their passion for Jesus. I pray on a regular basis about my needs and the things I want to happen not realizing all that God is doing in me through this season I am in. I believe it's the things that keep us in desperation for Him that also brings maturity to our faith. We grow when we are depending fully on Gods strength & His provision to carry us, mold us and grow us into who He created us to be.  When you feel as if you have no words to reach the heavens know that God already knows,  so just praise Him and thank Him for the process.  We crave completion and prayer is our connection to the ONE and only completion we will ever obtain. God doesn't allow us to stay where we are instead He uses every word spoken or not spoken, every tear cried on an altar or words written in a journal to move us and to grow us so we must allow our prayers to stretch us. 

3. What is it that you truly need

God isn't Santa clause. That's a tough reality for many including myself to swallow at times. When you need healing to come or a financial miracle to take place it's easy to beg God with open arms for the result we want. For the girl who wants that perfect guy to the guy who needs that acceptance letter to prove himself to his parents that he is enough I get it. We crave to be known in a world that pushes that concept in every area of social media to books that line the shelves in every store. We need for things to workout and through prayer our wants become the very driving force of our communication with God. The depth of our faith is measured by how much we trust God. When I lose, or when I don't get what I want my response clearly shows the condition of my heart and just how much I truly trust my Creator. He tells us in Romans 8:28 that ALL things work together and yet we usually forget that when things don't go the way we plan. If I am honest with myself I have wanted some pretty shallow material things and while praying I have tucked them in between the words of my needs. If I ask myself what it is that I truly need it's not those things at all. When we allow our need to be known to connect with a want we will eventually be in the danger zone of pride.  

4. Pray as if you are free 

So many times I find myself saying I'm sorry for past sins and yet live as if I was never forgiven. Freedom is the very reason Jesus died (Galatians 5:1) and we have to come boldly Into His presence and stand in our redemption.  Struggles are real but Gods redeeming grace and love will always win. 

These are just a few truths that God seems to be showing me in this season of my life.  There are days where we can feel the weight of our daily stress or thoughts that push us towards defeat and instead of throwing our hands up in complete surrender we ball our fist and shake it at God. The beautiful thing about freedom is that it blooms out of our surrender. God wants you to freely walk in the fullness of His power and presence. Defeat is not an option when you are choosing to walk in the One who has already won!   

How can I pray for you today? 

Wednesday, May 13, 2015

spirit lead me where my trust is without borders.....

Kids are so curious and yet have no idea how much they inwardly crave boundaries to ensure safety.  Teenagers know boundaries ensure safety yet push them with intent to bend them.  As adults we create them within the context of how they benefit us by acting as if they don’t exist or enforcing them with the intent of measuring others by them.  As I was writing this morning I was listening to Oceans in the background and as I heard  “spirit lead me where my trust is without borders” my heart began to surface the areas of distrust in my own life and as I began to confess those areas of unbelief tears began to stream down my face.  You see God isn’t mad at me when I don’t trust Him nor does He ever do anything to spite me because I choose not to trust.  To trust God without borders simply means there is absolutely NOTHING out of His reach.  There is no sin that can’t be redeemed. There is no marriage that can’t be restored. There is no sexual past that can’t be healed. There is no hole that He can’t fill. Our longing for more is what creates boundaries within our hearts. We seek to fill the shallow places within our lives that only leave us with a deeper longing for more of something else.  When we choose to allow our unbelief to guide the direction of our words and ultimately our feet we will never end up in a place of contentment. Jesus has to be our go to when everything falls apart and when everything is going incredible.  We can fake happiness by wearing a plastic smile all day or we can let our love for the Creator be the driving force behind our unstoppable and relentless Joy. Circumstances can crumble but Joy will not be shaken. Circumstances can leave you sobbing in desperation buy Joy will not be shaken. God’s protection over His children is something we can’t fathom to the point we fill like we have to stick our nosey selves in and begin manipulating the outcomes of our lives.  

My heart aches this week for so many women who have expressed such frustration towards God. They look at the walls closing in on them as a punishment from God.  Ladies hear me say that God’s silence in your chaos isn’t punishment but a call to trust Him without borders.  Ladies your marriage that seems to be falling apart isn’t a punishment from God but a call to trust Him without borders. To the girl who is starving herself because her peers are telling her she isn’t good enough and the mirror reinforces it God isn’t mad at you, He is calling you to trust Him without borders. 

In the beginning of time the enemy distorted God’s truth and today he uses religion to distort the beauty of God’s word in our lives by creating this expectancy of perfection that is paired with rules.   When we begin pursuing God alone we can identify truth and we can identify the lies from the enemy. We respond differently in every situation no matter chaotic or not. We can’t be shaken or moved because our deepest roots are within a God that will never be shaken.  Today I believe some of you including myself have to lay down manipulation once and for all. By creating boundaries that only benefit us blurs the beauty of the immeasurably more that is just around the corner. 

Trusting God without borders is calling you and I into deeper waters and that is scary.  Psalm 34:4 says “ I sought the Lord and He heard me, and delivered me from all my fears.”  What represents your “deeper water” this morning?  Maybe it is finally forgiving someone that hurt you in ways that have left you wounded. I am so sorry for that pain but I know that God is a God that heals and provides restoration.  Maybe it is finally letting your money be His money.  I know you need things and want things to better your family and so does God.  Maybe it is embracing a new season without fear of “what if”. God loves you more than you could ever imagine and He wants you to walk out of this season and into a new one with your heart positioned to hear from Him and to just walk with Him and I promise your faith will deepen.

 Lets trust Him ladies without any strings attached. I believe that when we do a joy that is unexplainable begins to stir within us and passions are birthed and dreams take flight. Others are blessed because our lives aren’t about us but about God. Our families are strengthened and our marriages gain momentum.  God isn’t calling you out where He isn’t but instead He is taken you places you can never imagine. My prayer for you is that those borders you are afraid to come to or to cross over will become land to possess in JESUS NAME! 

Joshua 1:9 “ Have I not commanded you? Be strong and of good courage; do not be afraid, nor dismayed, for the Lord your God is with you WHEVEVER YOU GO.”  

Thursday, May 7, 2015

God uses silly things including photo booths

Last week Richard and I made a trip to my home away from home Anderson SC. We went there to help celebrate 20 years of Clayton King ministries. His faithfulness to loving God and loving people blows me away & Sharie's heart is no different. They are literally changing the world!  It was decorated so beautifully and the food was outstanding. They also had a photo booth with lots of props. Richard and I along with Joseph (Clayton and Sharie's youngest son) grabbed a few things and I would say whether to smile or to make a face. We laughed through most of the pictures and not one picture had all of us actually smiling.  A few days passed and I found the pictures I had taken and as I looked at them I started laughing and I also learned a few things. The way I took the first set of pictures is how I often treat God.  He will show me clarity and direction and because I'm fearful or can't understand or see the end result I often choose to do what makes me happy or feels comfortable acting as if I heard nothing at all. I remember looking at the screen and saying "ok on this next picture smile" but because I was looking at my body and making sure I was standing at an ok angle I missed the flash and Joseph and Rich we're smiling and I looked like a zombie hahaha. I had a desired outcome and yet it was the opposite that actually happened. 

I am also learning that Gods provision is a step of trust without questioning His means. I must choose not to manipulate the areas I can or can't see. In the picture I would try and position a prop to hide certain areas and I realized that it has nothing to do with what people can see but everything to do with my heart. We try and maneuver and change things to fit into our lives the way we think God should provide but we really can't manipulate the hand of God no matter how hard we try.  Today there may be areas of your life that you don't trust God and I believe He is calling you to let go of the unbelief because you will never move forward until you do.  

Later in the evening my friend Mollie and I decided to jump in the photo booth. We grabbed glasses. hats, and a sign and because we had done it before we knew how long to wait before the flash and we knew how to get the pictures we wanted & yes they were so cute. I believe that when we know God in a way that requires ultimate surrender the outcome just flows out of that and because the anticipation of that outcome is removed you enjoy the moment. We step back and no longer chase a dream we just chase our Creator. Your dream is not what defines you nor should it dictate your attitude and the posture of how you worship God. Instead those dreams are a tool designed to bring glory to God and to deepen your trust and love for Him. 

God used something as simple as a photo booth with silly pictures to remind me that no matter where I stand,  I stand with my heart surrendered and positioned for whatever the outcome may be. So choose to smile today because you have a God that loves you more than you could ever imagine! 

Psalm 34:5 those who look to Him are radiant with Joy, their faces will never be ashamed.