Act With Freedom

act with freedom

Loyalty flows through my veins like a sanguinous river. If you are in my circle, something drastic has to happen in order for me to show you the exit sign. However, this is not always a great thing. My heart is often heavy because I will go to the 15th round, bloodied and bruised because I believe people are worth my effort, oftentimes regardless of what it costs me.

In recent years, I have been setting firm boundaries. Mainly because I have to. I have to guard my hours and minutes like a mother hen watches her nest. However, my heart is the same. I want to build deep connections with the people in my life. Those who I believe God wants me to pour into and build relationships with.

But, anytime you are in relationships, anytime you choose to link arms with another human being, you will hurt them and they will hurt you. Bottom line.

Please tell my you know what I’m talking about? Have you ever poured yourself into a relationship, job, ministry, child, project, or cause? Invested everything and every resource that you possibly could….only to be disappointed in the outcome?

I have done this more than I could possibly recount.

I was attached to the outcome. I had something in mind that I wanted to see happen. I wanted different results. And when I didn’t get them, I was hurt or afraid or bitter. Maybe I wanted more for them than they wanted for themselves… Maybe I wanted something from them that they couldn’t possibly give me… Maybe I put them in the wrong position in my life…

In all the examples I can think of, I acted with expectation. One of the first things I learned in graduate school was that “unmet expectations lead to frustration”. In other words, frustration is always the end result when you don’t get what you want. Well, duh. I knew what this felt like, but I had never taken the time to process it mentally, only with my heart, until recently.

As I was pondering what it means to “act without expectation”, my mind shifted over to this question: How in the world does one “act without expectation”? Or better yet, is it even possible to act without expectation?

The life coach in me started processing questions that would help me unearth the treasure hidden deep inside this enigma.

1) Would I do what I am about to do if no one noticed? Root = desire to be recognized

2) Who am I trying to impress or gain favor with by what I am about to do? Root = desire to be loved/liked

3) Is what I am about to do going to increase the chances that another person will think I am okay, good, normal, acceptable, etc.? Root = desire to be accepted.

4) Will I be upset or frustrated if there is no mutual reciprocation of my actions? Root = being a human being

This is such a difficult topic. There has been much research on altruistic behavior. And to put it nicely, it is very rare to find people who act purely based on altruism. When most of us do things, we expect something in return. Plain and simple.

After all, we are human beings. We need and want to be recognized, loved, liked, and accepted. Right? We are all born with these basic emotional needs.

But knowing that we have these needs and learning to manage them are two separate issues. So how do we act without expectation in our relationships?

I believe the answer is completely radical to our human nature. We can’t act without expectation (well, maybe some of us can, but I’m not one of them). When we act we expect things. What I am learning to do and what I would encourage you is to not act without expectation, but to act with intention. And when you act with intention, I would encourage you to answer these questions:

1) Is what I’m about to do or say kind, gracious, and necessary?

2) Would I still say or do this if I gained nothing? 

3) What is my motive behind my words and or actions? To make me look worthy, acceptable, and lovable, or something else?

4) Am I willing to accept the fact that my actions or words may not be reciprocated and be okay with it?

If you spend some time pondering these questions, I believe you will be able to discern whether or not you are acting with the wrong expectations or if you are acting with intention. If you check your intentions or motives before you speak or act, your frustrations will decrease as you realize that you and only you are responsible for your motive. When you release the outcome, you release yourself from emotional hell. You are not responsible for other’s actions, words, or motives.

Then you can act with freedom, instead of with expectations.

I am learning and living this right along with you. I pray we can both act in freedom and not be tied to the uncontrollable expectations of others. The only person you will ever be able to control is yourself. And that is more than enough for one lifetime!

 

Concerned But Not Consumed

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I started posting the following thoughts last Sunday afternoon on Facebook, but it turned into a dissertation. Then I remembered something…I have a blog! **{Pastors beware, your congreation really does listen in church on Sunday mornings!}**

Our pastor at Discovery Church in Clayton, NC, shared this little tidbit last Sunday and it was a “big aha” for me:

“Concerned and cautious, but not fearful.”

Pastor Monte was discussing an acronym that we can use to help us avoid temptations. I think he was reading a quote when he said we should be “concerned and cautious, but not fearful”. Sorry, I don’t remember who he was quoting. But, I will never forget what he said.

“Concerned and cautious, but not fearful.”

As a life coach, I coach clients through fear all the time. I have a front row seat in women’s lives when they conquer fear and slay their personal dragona. In my own personal life, fear is a hurdle I have to manage every day of my life. Some days are better than others.

I have been pondering since Pastor Monte shared from from his heart last Sunday morning. Here is what God has showed me so far:

When I am afraid, I react.

When I trust, I am cautious and wait.

When I am afraid, I create the absolute worst outcome in my head.

When I trust, I am concerned but not consumed.

That’s it friends! When I trust, I am concerned, but not consumed! Have you ever been consumed by something?

  • The insect bite that you know with certainty will leave you crippled by evening.
  • The move to another city that will leave you with zero friends and alone for the rest of your life.
  • The looming decision that feels like an emotional and mental leach that may very well suck the life right out of you.
  • The relationship you can’t fix and it feels like your heart may burst and you will never be loved again.

Do you see a pattern of fear that leads to the worst possible scenario? Can you imagine how Daniel felt in the lion’s den? I am sure he was afraid, but he was not consumed. He was concerned and he trusted his God who delivered him from sure death.

Fear is just fear. It is powerless without us. Our imaginations provide fuel for the flame that is fear. We are the ones who give fear power. The emotions we attach to it turn it into a monster. It consumes us. Just like a raging forest fire.

My favorite reminder when I am facing fear is this:

“When I am afraid, I will trust in you.  In God, whose word I praise, in God I trust; I will not be afraid. What can mortal man do to me?” Psalm 56:3-4

I say this verse over and over again. I meditate on it. I let it consume me instead of fear. I can remain concerned without being consumed, but only if I choose to let my imagination rest and my trust roam.

What or who do you cling to when fear tries to consume you? I would love to hear from you!

 

On Being a Mama…

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They don’t tell you everything. The sleepless nights. The emotional and mental drain. The struggle not to yell every.single.day. The sandpaperish difficulty of different temperaments trying to all live together under the same roof.

Or maybe they did and I couldn’t imagine it so my brain and heart didn’t have a framework for it all.

Either way, it’s not at all what I had pictured. But to be honest, I don’t remember what I had pictured. I don’t remember many things these days. And when I do it’s usually too late to do anything about it.

Their mess is everywhere. They talk with their mouths full of food. The toilet paper roll is always empty. I don’t remember the original color of the upholstery in my car. They always have my iPad. And when I finally do find it at the end of the day, the 1% battery life makes me want to scream for the 432nd time that day.

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Being a mom is the most exhausting job I’ve ever had. It is draining in every imaginable way. Part of me feels guilty for saying that. The rest of me says AMEN.

This weekend we celebrate mothers. But, Mother’s Day is one of those holidays that frustrates me, like Valentine’s Day and National Ice Cream day. Yes, I ordered my mom flowers just like you probably did. I fell prey to the pomp and circumstance of it all. But, deep inside of me, I question many things:

 

Did God really know what He was doing when He picked me to be a mom to my daughter and son? {Some days I wonder.}

What makes being a mama so hard? {Am I the only one who questions this?}

Why do I care so darn much? {This…this may be where I find a lot of answers to my questions.}

I was praying this week about being a mama, because lots of days lately praying is my lifeline and anchor, and I asked God to show me the answers to these questions.

Now, let me warn you. Be prepared for a massive enemy assault of epic proportions when you pray and ask God to reveal things about you and your children. They will have quite possibly the worst week of their lives. And so will you.

But as I was seeking one day (and cleaning out my inbox), I read this post on Ann Voskamp’s blog. She had a guest poster on May 2nd, Elisa Morgan. Here is an excerpt from her writing:

“I didn’t know then what I do know now: that every child’s journey is his or her own.

God is guiding and shaping their individual lives and the lives they individually influence.

No parent, no matter how dedicated, expert, present and loving can produce a perfectly healthy and happy adult. Such a feat is simply not within our power.

At the same time, every parent is divinely used to affect the journey of every child – toward this and away from that, even if with opposite from intended results. (“If you say don’t go there, there I will tread!”  “If you say head over here, I will head over there!”)

And I didn’t know then what I do know now: that every child of every parent is God’s instrument in the life of his or her parent.

My children have been His chief tool for the shaping of meshaving off the certainty, molding a softer version, raising up a gumption necessary to face another day.

Evidently, they needed me – who I thought I was and who I’ve become – to mold their beings.

And certainly, I needed them – who they were and weren’t, who they are and aren’t, who they will be and won’t be – to become who I was, am and who I will be.” Elisa Morgan

This is what branded my heart with fierce conviction: EVERY CHILD OF EVERY PARENT IS GOD’S INSTRUMENT IN THE LIFE OF HIS OR HER PARENT.

Ouch. Gulp. Tears.

Not only do they need me, but I need them. Oh how I need them so. I have never ever been broken so much. Being a mama IS the most exhausting job I’ve ever had. It IS draining in every imaginable way. And I need Jesus more as a mama than I’ve ever needed Him in my life. I can’t do this in my own strength and He knows that all too well. 

I have so many rough edges. God knows just the right grade of sandpaper that I need. And right now, they are grades 3 and Kindergarten!

They need me. I need them. We both need Jesus.

“Oh Father…guide us. Show us. Be gracious with our fragile hearts. We can’t do this in our own strength. You are our strong tower. We run to you and we are safe. Remind us of your truths as we speak them over our babies. Help us to stand firm in the storms and to praise you. And thank you for making us mamas. And Lord, for those who want to be mamas, will you grant them grace today? And in your time, make them mamas? Clinging to You today, Father.” 

Builder of Our Dreams

“…we do not dream independently, and God does not sign off on our dreams. He is the builder of our dreams. We bring him our blank canvases, hand them over, and say, “Whatever you must create to display your glory, do it.” — Jennie Allen, Restless

She called me out of desperation, so she said. I think it was more inspiration. Preferences, right?

“I can’t sleep at night. I am excited and afraid all at the same time. Don’t you have some fancy word for that…ambivalence? Is that right? What if this is what God wants me to do? What if this is what I was made to do?” Her usually methodical cadence of speech seemed to be stuck in fast forward due to the cacophony of emotions she was experiencing.

To her cascade of questions, I responded with a simple question, which turned her desperation into aggravation: “What if?”

After zero pause to consider my question, she responded with frustration, “Lizzie, that’s why I called you! Don’t do this to me. Just tell me what you think I should do!”

The life coach in me knows that even if I think I know what’s best, I don’t have the answers for my clients or friends or family. They have the answers. I have lots of questions. If I ask open and curious questions, they will find their answers.

As the silence grew between her aggravation and my curiosity, my thoughts turned inward and I jotted down a few notes from the past couple of years. I have hiked the mountain of fear and doubt my friend is hiking.

It’s only been 2 years since I painted my first canvas. 24 months. 730 days. And a few sleepless nights.

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God was building a dream inside of me for 35 years. I had no idea. In the spring of 2012, hibernation complete, something inside of me awakened. I knew during my first acrylic painting class that I would never be the same. I could feel an internal trembling. An ache or desire that had never been expressed. Something not unlike the early labor pains I had already experienced with my daughter and son.

Something was ready to emerge. To breathe. To wake up and live.

If I’d known two years ago what the Lord was going to do from April of 2012 to now, I would not have believed it. Habakkuk 1:5 says:

“Look among the nations! Observe! Be astonished! Wonder! Because I am doing something in your days– You would not believe if you were told.”

Had I known I would gain new friends, open an art studio, sell paintings, go to art shows, teach people from ages 4 to 84 how to paint, travel with my paints and brushes, and watch people freely express with their creative genius, I would not have believed it.

I’ve also lost dear friends, messed up dates on the calendar, had to start over on several canvases, caused kids to cry, and paid good money to my massage therapist to help with the tension my muscles hold on to.

Lord, whatever you must create to display your glory, do it.

So brave. So crazy. So hard. So life changing. So glad I let go and let God. Just like my friend above, who leaped and discovered she had wings. And then her desperation dissipated into celebration.

Here are a few curious questions that helped turn my desperation and aggravation in to inspiration as God has been showing me what colors to use on my blank canvas since April of 2012:

What keeps you awake at night?
What are you most afraid to do?
What is God building inside of you?
When you think about your life, what’s missing?
If you look at your life right now, what pattern is developing?

And remember, buildings take time to build, canvases have many layers and often need time to dry before you can paint the next layer, relationships will change, and most of all, so will you. Be kind and patient with yourself. You are a masterpiece…one stroke of the Master’s brush at a time.

 

Playing God

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“You know, Lizzie, it’s really hard to hear God sometimes when you’re good at a lot of things.”

I don’t think my friend knew she was releasing an emotional earthquake and the tsunami that soon followed. Because what I heard and what she said were two completely different things. What I heard the Holy Spirit say to me was, “Lizzie, it’s really easy to play God when He has equipped you to do great things.”

Now, let me make this very clear. I believe EVERY person on planet Earth has been CREATED to do GREAT things. Every. Single. Person. You, me, your brother, your mother, your kids, your neighbor, the man at the homeless shelter, the kid who dropped out of high school, the kid who achieved perfection on the SAT, and every one else in between.

I’m not special or on the A-team. And neither are you. But we are both on God’s team and we have been uniquely created to do good works for Him and His kingdom.

Okay, now that the air has oxygen in it again, let’s carry on.

If I were a superhero, I would probably be the Incredible Hulk. No, I don’t turn green when I’m angry, just really red! However, I have something in common with the Incredible Hulk: self-sufficiency.

The struggle that drains me the most is doing things in my own strength. Consumes me. It started about 37 years ago when I was born. Probably even before then. Definitely before then. Self sufficiency is my strong suit. Call it what you want, perseverance, stubbornness, determination, controlling, etc. It can be such a struggle.

But, the crazy thing is that one of my top five strengths on the Strengths Finder Assessment is just that, command. Command leads me to take charge. To be compelled to move forward. So what makes this an issue? What is the struggle? Isn’t that a good thing? How can a good thing get me in so much hot water?

Well, yes it is a very good thing. But, and this is a very large but, the problem develops when I’m driving and I’m telling God where I’m going and what I’m gonna do. Yes. I do that. Often. Well, to be honest, less often that I used to, but still too often.

And it gets me in a lot of trouble. I get in over my head and I drown in very hot water. Then I’m like, “God, help!”. I can be like impetuous Peter. Or zealous Paul. Or managing Martha. All in the same 5 minutes!

Playing God or acting as if you are in control of your life is truly an illusion of epic proportions.

I know what Peter felt like when he started sinking. When he took his eyes off Jesus and attempted to walk on water in his own strength. I get a sinking feeling in the pit of my stomach when I know I’m operating out of Lizzie’s strength and not in the all sufficiency of Christ.

Self-sufficiency is sort of like drinking salty water. You’re drinking a lot of water, but you’re still thirsty. Your tank seems full, but you are running on empty.

Then you crash and start thrashing wildly in the waves that have enveloped you. Or hopefully, you realize before you crash that you are trying to run the show and you decide to stop before you crash. That’s where I’ve been in my walk with the Lord.

Recently, I was trying to make a decision about something and I kept hitting a brick wall {crashing}. I was trying to figure everything out in my own strength. I went to God and prayed about my struggle. He showed me that my struggle had nothing to do with what I thought it was about and my true struggle was with my heart. My heart wasn’t in the right place. Once I repented and submitted my plans to the Lord, He quickly revealed to me what His desires were for me. And much to my delight, they lined up with my desires. {Sidenote: I am positive every situation will not end this way, but this one did.}

In this process of stopping to PRAY, I learned four valuable actions that help me release control of my life to the Lord:

1) Pause – this forces me to stop right now, in the present, and take notice of who or Who’s driving.

2) Release – giving my plans and desires, my past, to my Father.

3) Acknowledge – knowing Who is really in control and telling Him that I am not in control of my life by repenting.

4) Yield – trusting that whatever He has for me is the very best. This is where I surrender the future and all that it holds to my Lord.

This 4 step intentional process of PRAYing was transformational for me. It has forever changed my view of one of my greatest strengths and weaknesses. When I play God, I am in control. I am driving. When I Pause, Release, Acknowledge, and Yield, it is no longer I who live, but Christ who lives in me! (Galatians 2:20)

From this day forward, I plan to focus on PRAYing and walking in Christ sufficiency instead of my own strength. For when I am weak, He is strong:

 “And He has said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for power is perfected in weakness.” Most gladly, therefore, I will rather boast about my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ may dwell in me.” II Corinthians 12:9

I am sure there will be lots of waves, but I plan to walk on water!

 

 

 

Post 13.1 Ramblings

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Honestly, I was not looking forward to the inaugural Rock’n’Roll Half Marathon this morning. I trained, but didn’t know if my training had prepared me for the hills of downtown Raleigh, NC.

However, God showed up in so many ways. His presence was palpable…in every way. I was not looking forward to running and pacing by myself. And guess what? I didn’t have to. Some how, in the sea of 12,000+ runners, I “stumbled” upon a friend who paces just like me. Coincidence? Nah. Not even close.

As with every race, I learn something about myself. Here are a few things I learned or observed today:

1) When using the port-o-potty before the race, do not look in the potty. Trust me on this one.

2) Aquafor is amazing. Saved some skin for me today.

3) 75 degrees is not an ideal temperature to run a half-marathon. I prefer the 50’s.

4) I only like one type of hills and it is spelled HEELS. TarHEELS to be specific. Downtown Raleigh is very hilly. Don’t believe me? Run the RnR next year.

5) The best part of my race was coming up at the intersection of Lake Wheeler and Umstead Rd. My biggest cheerleaders were waiting there and cheering me on.

6) My heart hurts for the 2 runners who died during the race today. I know our days are numbered, but it seems so unfair. I pray they knew where they would spend eternity.

7) Runners are a unique family. We come in all shapes and sizes, colors and ethnicities, training levels and athletic abilities. But one thing’s for sure. We are all for each other. We all want the same thing…to cross the finish line.

8) Every time I run, I count it a joy and a blessing. Many of you know I was run over by a tractor when I was 2.5 years old. My pelvis was broken in three places and I had to learn to crawl and walk all over again. My Physical Therapist was my great Grandma. She wouldn’t give up on me and would tell me over an over again, “you can do it!”. Honestly, I probably shouldn’t be alive. Every step I take is a reminder of what almost wasn’t. I pray I make the best of it.

 

9) Everybody needs a cheerleader. I can’t begin to describe what all the people cheering on the sidelines did for me today. I had many friends who watched the entire half-marathon to catch glimpses of 2 or 3 of their friends. That is love and friendship at its best. Grateful.

10) Food never tastes as good as it does after a long run. Your body is in need of nutrition. I was craving BBQ chips and a Coke after my race. I haven’t had a soda since October of 2007. I have no idea why I was craving Coke. I indulged in the BBQ chips and had a big glass of tea instead of the Coke. Just perfect.

At the end of the racing day, my heart is happy, my body aches, my mind is still racing, and I am looking forward to a hot bath with epsom salt, baking soda, and lavender.

I hope whatever “race” you enter, you savor every moment. Even the visits to the port-o-potty!

Walking on Water

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I didn’t learn to swim until I was 34 years old. One month to the day before I competed in my first triathlon. I do well under pressure. Most of the time.

Now, instead of swimming. I’m walking. On water. And it is probably the first time ever in my life I have not tried to figure out what the heck I’m doing and why. I am enjoying the scenery as long as I keep my eyes off the waves.

Soul Graffiti Art Studio opened for business in late October 2013. I didn’t have tables or chairs until 3 days before the first class. Pressure, yet again.

Sometimes I feel like I’m gonna crack or fail or sink under the waves. I hold my breath. Or take shallow breaths until I realize my chest feels tight. Remember that word, pressure? Yes. And when I feel that way, I know it’s time to pause. Center myself and ask me a series of questions:

1) Who do you belong to? (the who)

2) What is your calling/purpose? (the calling)

3) Where are you headed? (the vision)

4) What is your part? (the obedience)

5) What do you need to let go of right now? (God’s part)

These questions help me keep my eyes off the waves and on the One who “gives the sun for light by day and the fixed order of the moon and the stars for light by night, who stirs up the sea so that its waves roar— the Lord of hosts is his name” (Jeremiah 31:35).

And most often, I lose balance and shift from my center when I try to do HIS job. I can’t control the waves. But, He can. What is my part? What is your part?

Tonight, I am resting well. Resting because I’ve done my part. Now, while I sleep the Lord never slumbers. He’s got my back. And yours.

My new website!!!

“The chief beauty about time
is that you cannot waste it in advance.
The next year, the next day, the next hour are lying ready for you,
as perfect, as unspoiled,
as if you had never wasted or misapplied
a single moment in all your life.
You can turn over a new leaf every hour
if you choose.” 

Arnold Bennett

It’s finished friends! Hope you enjoy what you see. I was ready for something fresh, new, and clean. And my web designer, Contessa Siegner, was up for the challenge. However, she may have regretted partnering with me on this project! I am so glad she is on my team. If you need an excellent web designer, you can learn  more about her offerings here.

I am so thrilled with the new lizziebranch.com. Hope you will like Kairos Coaching, LLC on Facebook by clicking here and sign up to receive my weekly blog meanderings in your inbox by subscribing via email on the homepage of lizziebranch.com.

Life is full of surprises these days. I am walking on water and enjoying the sights and sounds above the waves. Thank you all for your support through the years. There are lots of fun and exciting things on the horizon. One of those is the Soul Graffiti Art Studio website. That is Contessa’s next challenge, if she’ll accept it! Until then, you can like Soul Graffiti Art Studio on FB by clicking here.   

Let me know what you think by commenting on FB or leaving a comment here!

Hope you come back often and enjoy what you find.

 

Out With the Old and….

….in with the NEW!!

Who said it? You know, the quote about the only thing we can depend on in life is change?? Well, some big changes are on the horizon for my website. www.lizziebranch.com will be down for a week or so for a major renovation!

My website will be in the capable hands of my fantastic web designer, Contessa Siegner. Once the new site is ready for its debut, I will post again and give you a virtual tour!

Much love my friends. See you again very soon!

be well,

Lizzie

Dreamer’s Manifesto

“The problem I have with haters is that they see my glory, but they don’t know my story…” — Maya Angelou

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When you know in the deepest recesses of your heart that God has created you, called you, and commissioned you for more {the stuff dreams are made of} you will encounter many people on this thrilling adventure who will try to convince you otherwise.

People will try to thwart your dreams. Lean into your dreams.
People will try to convince you to stop. Press on.
People will say good bye. Let them go.
People will say mean things about you. Know His truth about you.
People will try to justify their actions. Speak truth.
People will hurt you. Forgive them to set you free.
People will slander your name. Know who you belong to. 
People will make you question your choices. Stand firm.
People will not understand your motives. Remember your vision.
People will be jealous. Work harder.
People will knock you down. Get up.
People will try to sell you short. Stand tall.
People will doubt you. Never doubt Who you believe in and the purpose for which He made you.

They will try to convince you of many things that are contrary to what you know. They will attempt to destroy your destiny, the very reason blood pulses through your veins. God’s vision for your life is what helps you continue walking when you want to collapse. Vision is what gives you reason to get up one more time. It sustains you, energizes you, and realigns you.

Never, not for one minute, give them any space in your mind. Don’t allow their cruel words to take root in your soul. For something is already growing there. Your dream, your vision, your very life. And these people are like weeds who will eventually choke the life out of your dream…if you let them.

No matter what or who comes your way, never forget who made you, who you are, and where you are headed. It will not be easy, but it will be the only thing that will give you rest for your soul. To know that you fought and won, bloodied and bruised, but valiant. Don’t ever let anyone take that from you. Your very destiny depends on it.

There will be few on your journey who will help you with weed control. They will be your team mates, your tribe. You may already know who some of these individuals are. If not, don’t pick them. Wait for God to show you who they are. He will. I promise. When the time is right, you will see your team forming.

Some people will love you. Love them more.
Some people will respect you. Respect them too.
Some people will offer to help you. Let them.
Some people will be very generous. Pay it forward.
Some people will show you the way. Mentor others around you.  

While you wait, love others. Serve others. Give of yourself. Be grateful for what and who you have in your life. Be mindful of the seeds you sow. Plant, water, and tend your land. You will harvest in due season.

You will begin to believe what they are saying about you. Memorize His truth about you.
You will want to isolate from others. Build a team.
You will doubt what you heard Him say. Trust His word.
You will question your choices. Remember you are chosen.
You will feel like an idiot. Look at all giants who came before you.
You will want to give up. Keep your eyes on the prize.

And the prize my friend, bigger than any dream you could ever dream, is obedience. Full throttle, wide-eyed, bigger than life obedience to the One who made you for this very moment. What God told you in the dark, bring forth into the light.

He will never leave you.
He believes in you. 
He created you for greatness in His Kingdom.
He knows you and loves you.
He is cheering you on.
He is your prize and you are His beloved.

I believe in you. I know you can do it. What or who are you waiting for? Today is the best day to start living your dream. Today. Right now. Get up and do one thing right now that will allow that light inside you to shine bright.

You won’t regret what you did, you will regret what you didn’t do.

Shine on, beloved. Shine.

 

“Nothing can dim the light which shines from within.” — Maya Angelou