Archive for the ‘Motivational’ Category

Wednesday’s Word

Wednesday, June 21st, 2017

Welcome to Wednesday’s Word @ Coffee Hour with Chicklit Power and Trench Classes United. I’m so glad you joined me today. Grab your coffee and come on in.

Well, summer is in full swing, right?! The seasons seem to be rolling right into each other, one right after the other, and as they do, I declare in my heart to do something different, not let life pass me by without my involvement. One way to ensure that that doesn’t happen is to soak myself in His Word, His love letters to us. There is nothing like some Biblical principles and promises to splash perspective on anything we are going through!

I remember when I was intimidated by the big book; and I know many are, right? Where do we start? Do we hold it in our hands and let it magically open up on its own, allowing the wind to open the pages and settle on a portion of scripture? Do we follow a one year reading plan – oh my goodness, I must say, those aren’t for me; I get too curious as I’m reading and often go off on research detours! Well, I thought it would be fun to do a Biblical exercise with you; one that I guarantee is life-changing!

In July my church will be doing a summer of Psalms and when I heard about that, it took me back to when I first began reading the Psalms: I would read it silently to myself, then read it aloud, let my heart hear the words, and then I would rewrite it according to what was happening in my life. In other words I would put myself and my circumstances in there. Guess what? Everything about you and me is already in there, but let me tell you, there’s power when we do this. Scripture is alive and doing this helps it to come alive in our life!

So, I thought I would try this with you for a few Wednesdays. So today is the 21st so let’s go to Psalm 21.

Many Bibles will offer a description of who wrote it and why, so we see that this Psalm was written after David won a big battle, so it’s a Psalm of praise. So before we start, think of a time where you experienced a victory, a victory that at the time seemed so amazing, and that includes a long-awaited answer to prayer. Remember how you felt? Do you have that in mind? Good. It’s so important that we remember these victories because when we are in a spiritual desert, it’s those remembrances of victories that can quench our thirst.

Here’s the Psalm:

“1The king shall have joy in Your strength O Lord; and in Your salvation how greatly shall he rejoice.”

Let’s stop there and rewrite it now

_______ (put your name in there) shall have joy in Your strength, O Lord; and in Your free gift of salvation how greatly shall I rejoice.

“2You have given him his heart’s desire, and have not withheld the request of his lips.”

Now, if you are in the midst of a battle or unanswered prayer, it could be written something like this:

Rewrite: You will give me my heart’s desire and You do hear the request of my lips. Let’s go on to verse 3 & 4.

3For You meet him with the blessings of goodness; You set a crown of pure gold upon his head. 4He asked life from You, and You gave it to him – length of days forever and ever.”

Rewrite: For You, oh God have met me with blessings of goodness and when my time on earth is done you will set a crown of pure gold upon my head. I have surrendered to you and in exchange you have granted me eternal life, length of days forever and ever.

5His glory is great in Your salvation; honor and majesty You have placed upon him. 6 For You have made him most blessed forever; You have made him exceedingly glad with Your presence.”

Now, I know we aren’t kings going into battles trying to take the land, but we each have a victory to win, a battle that He waits to fight for us, a sort of promised land of our own, so with that in mind, let’s rewrite these two verses:
Rewrite: My reward is great for it is within the gift of Your salvation; You have called me Your own, and have given me honor, though sometimes I don’t feel it in this world, I know You have called me blessed forever and when I am in Your presence, I am exceedingly glad.

Now, notice, I was honest, so you be honest, too. Share your heart, your burdens, cry out to Him.

7For the king trusts in the Lord and through the mercy of the Most High, he shall not be moved.”

Rewrite: For I do trust in you Lord, and because of Your grace, mercy which fills me with strength, I shall not be moved; my faith shall not waiver!

Let’s do one more verse and then I’ll let you go to finish up on your own.

8Your hand will find all Your enemies; Your right hand will find those who hate You.”

Let’s pause here a second and let me ask you: Do you have any enemies?  Most of us don’t like to think that we may especially because “enemy” is such a strong word and involves hatred. There is beauty in this verse, for if someone deems you an enemy, then they are an enemy of the Lord also! Let me show you:
Your hand will find all those who deem me their enemy for if they hate me, then they cannot love You, and only You can see into their heart.

Your turn, go ahead and go on to verse 9; have some fun with this and don’t try to be grammatically perfect.

Loving the Psalms,

Evinda

Tuesday’s Trench Truth and Invitation, Too!

Tuesday, June 20th, 2017

 

Welcome to Tuesday’s Trench Truth at Trench Classes United and Coffee Hour with Chicklit Power. Grab your favorite break-time beverage and join me for a moment of truth and an invitation, too.

 

Have you ever felt left out in a crowd of “friends?” or lonely despite being in a crowd? You and I are born with God-given desires: To love and be loved; to be accepted…and accept. One thing that interferes with these God-given needs is our own self-value. How do you see yourself?

I’ve come to learn this truth and I see it play out over and over again:

The more insignificant we feel in the lives of significant others, the more significantly we fear!

Join us to learn how to live fearlessly, embracing who we are meant to be and setting others free!

 

Registration is NOW open.

Hope to see you there.

Evinda

 

Monday’s Musings….

Monday, June 19th, 2017

Welcome to Coffee Hour @ Chicklit Power and Monday’s Musings @ Trench Classes United. Today’s blog is written by a special guest…someone I’ve known since she was about knee-height to me! She holds a special place in my heart and I saw this post she had written last week and asked if I could share it. It is so transparent, so what we represent at Trench Classes United. I pray you will enjoy it as much as I did. Who can’t relate to “turning down the volume of the His voice?”

Today I battled with my own flesh, trying to escape the Lord’s convictions about going to the river. Wanting badly to go, I simply decided to turn down the volume of His voice. I do that when I don’t like what I’m hearing, or when God is trying to move me in a different direction than I planned. It could be something He wants me to do or something He wants me to stop, a turn He is asking me to take or one He wants me to avoid.

If He’s moving me where I want to go, I am happy to listen to Him. It’s when I don’t like where He’s moving me that I suddenly grow deaf.

I got home tonight after going about my day as though I were going to go to the river tomorrow and I’m not sure what I was doing when I heard Him say loud and clear “NOT YET”!!  I stood still for an endless moment.

There was no mistaking it!

In this situation and many others, it has felt as though God holds the button for His volume control, no matter how hard I try to snatch it from His hands. I’ve learned that He will use whatever alarm He needs to use to wake me up. He didn’t say I can never go to the river again, He said just not yet.

The Lord didn’t allow my fleshly desires to overpower His will and my commitment to be fully submissive to Him. Letting go requires a death of sorts, as we mourn the loss of a life we were clinging to and embrace the dream of a God who is clinging to us.

Saying yes to God means saying yes to a bigger life, and He won’t settle for less. He doesn’t want us to either. Turn the volume up!

Love,

Breanna

 

Faith Filled Fridays

Friday, June 16th, 2017

Welcome back everyone to another Faith Filled Friday…

Have you ever fallen…and looked up to see others not only looking but laughing? Well, I have, just the other day, and as I fell in front of a bunch of people and heard the giggles… a thought came to me.

When I fail, when I fall… doesn’t it really offer proof of my dedication to keep trying? That I am still working hard toward a better life? Surely if a wave had an epiphany to realize it is not a mere wave but in essence the ocean itself… then maybe even one’s clumsy falls have an enlightenment to itself as well? The act of getting up itself is a mighty spiritual thing.

I am trying to add positive things to the negative thoughts that sometimes pour from my mind. Instead of an explanation point at the end with negativity, I am really trying to emphasize the good that is coming because of it. One of my goals in this life is to try and get to a point where I direct more feelings of happiness and positive directions instead of only redirecting the bad that has happened. It’s a start to change the mindset and this is a different step.

I admit this is very difficult step for me. I have so many things go wrong and I feel the failure in deep emotions… but hey my friendly morning crows will still show up in the morning… LOL Ha’… see I just did it. 🙂 Seriously, though, I have two crows that come by every morning. It seems that I have earned their friendship and have earned their trust. I feed them some grapes and popcorn…. I just know that they look forward to seeing me.

Lately when something happens to me that really hurts me, I finish the sentence or statement by putting that out there about those two crows. I have no doubt that God has sent them my way. At least I hope He did, for they have been a much needed source of comfort.

Trying to be more positive for me is a sort of homecoming I want to realize in my own life. Thriving…fishing for an ending that shows hope, and redirects energy to at least realize a possibility that despite what might be holding me down, or holding me back might just be a resistance much like a head wind where thought it is grueling, soon enough more muscle helps you push through. A place where once you push through, you find yourself upon that enlightened wave that realize its true genetic structure is so much more… the ocean within me.

Much love as always everyone…

 

~John

 

Thursday’s Trench Truth and Invitation Too

Thursday, June 15th, 2017


Welcome to Tuesday’s Trench Truth,and Invitation, too @ Coffee Hour with Chicklit Power and Trench Classes United. Come on in for what I hope will be an eye-opening truth for you!

If I were to ask you, what is the difference between responding and reacting, what would you say? It’s kind of thought provoking when you apply this principle to your personal interpersonal communications with others.

To react means we jump forward…without any thought or prayer, and to respond is to step back, put some thought and/or prayer into the situation and determine if you even need to respond.

Would you say you’re a reactor or a responder?

What about when it comes to life’s challenges and/or hurts; do you react or respond to them? Do we step back and invite Him into the situation or challenge, or do we move forward without any thought, prayer or planning? I don’t know about you, but my old propensity was to jump forward without prayer and planning, and usually that was followed by a mistake or regret!

What would it take to change from reactor to responder? For me, it’s been a change of one thing first: putting Him first, first thing in the morning, getting to know Him, His character, His principles and promises. He has turned me into a responder and He can do the same for you!

Join us to learn how to respond to life’s challenges by Living Fearlessly, Forgiven and Forgiving, because a life lived forgiven is worth living! Registration is now open!

Wednesday’s Word

Wednesday, June 14th, 2017

Dressed to Impress…or Eternal Success?

Colossians 3:12

12 Therefore, as God’s chosen people, holy and dearly loved, clothe yourselves with compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience.

Thank you for joining me for Wednesday’s Word & Coffee Hour @ Chicklit Power and Trench Classes United.  Summer is in full swing, huh?!

It was a workday and I stood in my closet in Yucaipa, California trying to anticipate what the weather would be like later on in Los Angeles. Hmmm, I wondered aloud, what to wear? I was trying to focus on the task at hand, but my head was wrapped around a new discovery: someone who I thought was a friend had un-friended me on Facebook and I was just a bit irritated! J I don’t want to give the enemy any more credit, so I won’t elaborate on this, but I am certain that you understand the feeling of rejection followed by frustration when this type of thing happens on social media. What a way to go into your day, huh? And yet, there is the fact that everyone is given freedom of choice, and we are not His puppets on a piece of string dangling from heaven. Oh, sometimes don’t you wish others were? J

As my hands ran through the hangers of clothes, my mind was racing, and yet there was a smile on my face because that earlier discovery of rejection did not overtake me, nor did I give in to the temptation to message that person to ask what the heck or defend myself. Instead, I actually put her first on my prayer list for the day. J

Oh, back to the “what-to-wear” dilemma!

I was preparing for an all-day video deposition, so I knew I’d need to not only feel comfortable but confident. Video depositions are quite a bit more challenging because you have to get every “okay,” every “hmmm,” every false start, and every sound, which can be challenging to write, let alone spell on our little court reporting machine. J J

My eyes skimmed over a couple of skirts, and I pulled a couple of sleeveless blouses off the hangers to see how they would look, and then a colorful sweater to finish each of the outfits off. I put my first choice on…and didn’t like it at all! Then I put the second choice on, and it just didn’t do anything for me. “Ugh, is it going to be one of those days?” I groaned aloud.

I hung them all back up and went back into my closet and gave one more glance at my skirts. I saw my pleated navy blue with off-white polka dots, quickly picked out a crème colored lacey top, and grabbed a navy blue sweater off its hanger and determined to like it. Wisdom has taught me to give more attention to how I am dressed internally than externally, and I can really work myself in a tailspin if I spend too much time in my closet.

My thoughts returned to the day ahead. As I get older, I’ve noticed that there are times that it takes a lot more energy to remain patient with attorneys and witnesses. You would think that with almost 27 years of experience that wouldn’t be the case, but then again, it’s just more opportunity for me to rely on Him, and invite Him into the deposition with me.

I quickly did my makeup, and hair, and then put on the outfit I had chosen, grabbed my blue strappy pumps and headed downstairs with the words of wisdom in Colossians 3:12 echoing in the hallways of my heart and I am grateful for the reminder that while I may need to feel confident and comfortable in my earthly outfit, I truly need to dress for eternal success more than I need to dress to impress.

I can be confident not because of what I wear externally, but because HIS word says I am dearly loved and I had spent the time I needed with Him that morning to be reminded of just that! Living like I am “dearly loved” will clothe me with compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience, even for those fast-talking witnesses and attorneys who sometimes cause me to want to throw my computer and run away. Something tells me that if I turn my focus on my eternal outfit, my external outfit won’t matter so much! I’m off for another day on the record!

Dressed for Eternal Success,

Evinda

 

Monday’s Mantra

Monday, June 12th, 2017

Welcome to Coffee Hour @ Chicklit Power and Trench Classes United. It’s another Monday and hopefully our Monday’s Mantra will make Monday a fun day and not a mundane day! Grab your coffee and come on in.

Have you ever yearned for heaven, or wondered what it would be like? In our connection group last week, we were discussing heaven and there were a couple of very profound questions we had to share our answers to. One of the questions was what would we ask Him when we get there, and then what do we expect to be freed from once there.

It was a powerful discussion where we each shared transparently. Many of us had questions and a genuine lack of understanding about death and abuse of children. I mean we talked about some pretty emotionally excruciating tragedies that we all are either walking through or that our friends are walking through.

As I listened, tears in my eyes mirrored the tears in the eyes of everyone there.  I realized that oftentimes, in our humanness we want to understand these things, and the truth is that we cannot. We cannot wrap our brains around the why, or the how, much less know HIS thoughts and understand His ways. This is when faith is moved from “park” to “drive”!

The truth is:

Faith is not a denial of painful circumstances; it’s the ability to allow Him to work in and through the painful circumstances.

Coffee Hour Friend, are you going through something that is requiring you to take your faith out of park and move it into the drive position? He has much to reveal to us in His time, and one thing we can count on is that though we don’t understand now, we will then…when we are face to face with our Abba Daddy whose plan has always been to offer us a hope, not to harm us, to life us up, not beat us down.

Faith-ing thru the journey,

Evinda

 

Faith Filled Friday

Friday, June 9th, 2017

Welcome back to Faith Filled Friday. It’s good to have you back. 🙂

Yesterday I read something that really stood out to me. It said: “I myself am made entirely of flaws, stitched together with good intentions.” These words were a total gift for me. My entire lifetime I have wanted to help people, to be an instrument of love. I noticed at a young age it was the only way I ever really felt good. Seeing a smile on a person’s face was just a beautiful sort of motivation to me.

The more I thought about what I read, the more I realized that it’s not merely good intentions I am stitched back together with, but the very actions of love I have projected by helping my fellow man. I admit that at times I put down something I should have completed so that I could help another. Or I give so much I have little for myself…this can be a flaw, but I will always believe in my heart that God is pleased with me for following my heart in loving other’s…even perfect strangers.

In the end when stitches are pulled from their host we are left with scars that are not only visible on the exterior, but felt on the interior. These scars that span incredible distances and time are in fact the very teachers that carry sisterly lessons. Doesn’t Jesus carry the scars in the palms of his hands and feet? For some reason I find that comforting that Jesus walked, lived and even died amongst us for us. The older I get the more I realize just how special that really is.

Our inner and outer scars are surely reminders into marking and remembering the struggles in life we have been through. For me they are the bookmarks that tag the very chapters of survival through incredible fear, pain and heartbreak; still here, still living and most importantly, still loving. They bear witness in an innate ability to keep from turning jaded or bitter. How blessed I am to not turn to such things despite almost being the victim to it.

I will never be perfect, far from it. In fact I wear that transparency like a suit. And although scars are the bookmarks of celebration that we made it through, every breath of healing eventually brings me back to my favorite chapter of all: “Blessed to be Alive.”

~John

 

P.S. I shot this week’s picture while in the assistance of a little one that needed some help. These moments are surely gifts when you realize that God himself has trusted you with his precious wildlife. Several birds, ducks, horses, dogs, cats, a turtle & one seriously soft rabbit! All part of one huge blessing! 🙂

 

 

 

 

Thursday’s Trench Truth and Invitation, Too!

Thursday, June 8th, 2017



Happy Thursday! Thanks for stopping by for our moment of truth coffee hour @ Chicklit Power and Trench Classes United. Grab your coffee and come on in.

Over the Memorial weekend, my husband and I traveled to Sacramento for the city’s traditional weekend-long jazz festival and the family’s traditional birthday party for mom (my mother in law). I’ve been in this family for almost 13 years now, and life always has something to teach me when I’m with them. This weekend was no exception. I mean, it’s not like I didn’t know this before, but this particular weekend, it really hit me with a new sense of appreciation: This family loves to laugh…over anything and everything. And I thoroughly enjoyed laughing with them, being in the moments that took my breath away because I laughed so hard!

These words are inspired from that weekend and include an invitation for you to join us for a night of laughter!

Laughter…often unannounced, surprising, beautiful, and absolutely free

And yet it has no price tag when it takes up residence inside of you or me

And releases unabashedly, for others to see and involuntarily experience

Have you ever been captivated by laughter, giggled until you were delirious?

Oh, what a feeling of reckless freedom that makes you suddenly unaware

Uninhibited, ignorant to the stressors of life, not bound by a single care

It’s in those moments of time we gain our strength to face our tomorrow

No matter what the day may bring to us, even a measure of pain or sorrow

Laughter will be waiting to turn the tide in our next tomorrow

Join us for a funny fundraiser with Squeaky Clean Comedy!

Evinda

P.S. Join me today at 10:00 PST for Coffee Hour Live @ www.facebook.com/Evindalepins Let’s talk about what we want to talk about after this series of Loving the Unlovable!

 

Wednesday’s Word

Wednesday, June 7th, 2017

Your Heart Can Beat against You!

     Jeremiah 17:9:

The heart is deceitful above all things, and desperately wicked. Who can know it?

Thanks for joining us for Wednesday’s Word at Coffee Hour @ Chicklit Power. Grab your coffee and your strand of faith. Trust me when I say that this Word definitely tied a knot in my faith…and in my heart!

Spiritual warfare is real! For weeks preceding our current trench class my heart has been heavy, and as we entered into this new trench, though I remain the main teacher, God has decided to take me back down in the trenches for more healing in a part of my life. The oppression has been incredibly real, which requires me to press in even harder, longer into my Jesus.

And when I do, one by one all of the silent questions I had been asking myself over the preceding weeks begin to surface, questions that planted seeds in my heart: “Why is this so hard?” “If this was really of/from God, surely I wouldn’t be this stressed out so maybe – well more than maybe — I’m on the wrong path.” “Maybe I made this whole crazy journey up. Maybe I’m supposed to just go back to working as a court reporter and forget this whole ministry thing.“Maybe since I’m having troubles of my own, I shouldn’t teach.”

Before long, I have filled my head with all sorts of negative thoughts, and it doesn’t take much time until my heart joined the party and had me buying them all as if they were truths. And then I began to “feel” these truths! What an incredibly sneaky process. The heart really can beat against you!

I love this truth that though whispered, cut through the dark with a bright ray of sunshine, filling my heart with hope:

God doesn’t call the perfect to any calling or ministry; He perfects those whom He calls!
The crazy part is how quiet the truth is. I wonder, does God whisper to me to quiet my brain so I can hear him?  Oh, no one knows me better than He does! But as soon as I get up and teach from the trench, all those lies fade into the atmosphere and disappear.

I just love how He ministers to us just the way we need it, when we need it for the reasons we need it! See, the heart only knows what we tell it so therefore, if we buy some lies and deposit them in there, the heart will take them, just like a thief, and deposit them into our emotional being and rob us of so much…so very much.

Are you catching what I’m throwing? Oh, let me tell you, Coffee Hour Friend, our hearts are quick to deposit every last one of those stinking-thinking thoughts we think, dropping them in there like a swooshed-in basket ball; nice and heavy they drop right in!  Before we realize what’s happening, our heart takes those lies to the bank, and robs us of all our joy, and strips us of our confidence in His purpose for our lives.

What sort of lies is your heart trying to get you to buy? Oh, that we wouldn’t even lend an ear to things that are not of Him, and not be fooled by the robber who waits to steal our joy and derail us from our calling. Instead, may we be a people that drop to their knees and give those lies up!

With my heart cleaned…

Evinda

P.S. Join me Thursday for Coffee Hour Live and Step 10 to Loving the Unlovable at 10:00 PST www.facebook.com/EvindaLepins