Love Abounds: Embracing Yourself in Love



Photo by Pixabay from Pexels

I wonder, how often do we actually embrace ourselves, all of our self? 
How much happier would we be if we decided to live our lives fully, not running from any part of who we are, but accepting and embracing all of us? What beauty could occur when we merge the pain that has caused us to rage, with the pain that has caused us to withdraw and be timid? What would we discover when we accept what we have been through, who we have been in the past, who we are now and the potential of who we have yet to become?
I can relate to running from parts of me. Running from memories that caused me pain, feeling stuck and paralyzed while attempting to hide from myself. Afraid of myself. Afraid of what would happen if I stopped being afraid. Fear of fear is a doozy, and kept me trapped in a viscous cycle. 
I have learned in order to be my best self, I must accept and embrace all of myself. The part of me that feels afraid at times, overwhelmed at times, overjoyed, delighted and stressed.


There aren’t any parts of me that aren’t worthy of love, compassion and support. Angry me deserves just as much time and attention as happy me. Stressed me deserves as much validation and compassion as peaceful me. Even in my darkest moments, I deserve respect and kindness. Oftentimes we are told we must consistently behave a certain way to receive kindness and love, when that’s simply not the case. God loves us always and in all ways.

Jeremiah 31:3
The LORD appeared to us in the past, saying: “I have loved you with an everlasting love; I have drawn you with unfailing kindness.


God loves us when we are sad, mad, confused, hurting and heartbroken. There is never a time when our Father does not love, care for and empathize with us. We are His Beloved Children, and He wants us to love and treat ourselves the way that He loves and treats us. God wants us to run to Him, confide in Him, and take refuge in His love, at all times, not just when we have been on our best behavior and life is going good. When we learn to allow God to embrace all of us, and allow ourselves to be loved by Him, we can embrace and love ourselves. There is no need to be afraid when there is love, and there is no better way to live, than in love.
                                                           
1 John 4:18
There is no fear in love. But perfect love drives out fear, because fear has to do with punishment. The one who fears is not made perfect in love.

Prayer for Emotional Healing

Dear Heavenly Father, Jesus and The Holy Spirit, 
You see my heart. You see every broken part inside of me. The pain. The anguish. The loneliness. The things that I’m unable to heal on my own. 
Comfort me. Fill me with your love, your presence, your spirit. Make me whole in you. Reside in my heart, filling all of the broken spaces inside of me with your love and grace. 
Heal my emotional wounds. Help me to love as though I have never been hurt. Surround me with your presence as a constant reminder that I am never alone. Provide me supernatural comfort reminding me that I’m always loved and cared for. 
Show me that I am yours. Put my heart back together, using your love as the glue. 
In the name of Jesus, 

Amen

Thoughts on Forgiveness


Pexels.com

Forgiveness is a word that makes people shudder when heard, because it can sometimes feel like forgiveness is condoning the hurtful behavior of others. Hurtful behavior that has caused wounds within our hearts and has seemed to affect us adversely, causing us great pain. It is the fear of feeling the same pain that makes us react so strongly towards forgiving a wrong that has been inflicted. We fear the pain, and feel as if letting go of the pain and negative emotions towards the person that caused this action, will mean that we will experience the same pain. We feel as if holding onto the anger and resentment will right the wrong that was done.

 Our anger and hurt is what got us through the the initial moment of hurt, of pain, of trauma; but once that moment is past, we are left on a new path but carrying the baggage of a previous destination, with no room to pick up the new emotions and energy that are needed for the current leg of our journey. If we continue to hold onto old negative feelings we deprive ourselves of the ability to receive the blessings, healing and comfort that God is providing us in every moment that we need it. It can be hard to hear God’s voice and feel His presence when we feel clutched in the throes of despair, but just because it is hard for us to hear and feel God, He never leaves us.

Pexels.com
The human journey can be grueling. Filled with ups and downs and very little love, let alone unconditional love. The type of love that can be counted on through thick and thin. These precarious, loveless, circumstances that many of us find ourselves in from time to time, can begin to harden our hearts to love as a whole, which in turn hardens our hearts towards our Loving Gracious Creator. God can never turn His back on us, but we sure do turn our back on him every so often. More often than I am sure any of us are willing to admit. I am sure God’s heart must ache when we allow ourselves to suffer by turning from Him, to nurse the wounds we procure in our journey of life, alone. Yet, He is continuously patient and loving with us. He continues to shine love down on us, even stronger when we are attempting to go it alone.

If we allow ourselves to trust in this constant love and surrender the burden of hurt, pain, anger and resentment to God, in exchange for renewal, healing, strength, and a greater understanding of ourselves and the world as a whole, we can move forward in our journey of life with the correct luggage. The type of luggage that is feather light and does not cause the wearer to tire, because it is filled with hope, faith, and so much love that the luggage floats and carries you along your journey. Whatever we need, we can always ask our Heavenly Father for and He will provide in accordance with His divine will which only wants the absolute very best for you.

Pexels.com

Allowing yourself to let go of hurt and pain and anger, is the true definition of forgiveness, and allows God to work on our behalf because God respects our free will and waits for you to ask for what you need so He can provide it for you. God loves you. He loves me. He loves us and He wants us to feel an increase of His love by allowing ourselves to forgive by releasing all toxic emotions so that we can receive His love.

Shed The Layers: A Journey of Healing and Self Love

I am happy to announce that my first book is available for purchase through Amazon! The ebook version is free through Kindle Unlimited. This was an incredible labor of love. I learned and grew so much from the process of writing and publishing this book of poetry and prose. I encourage you to leave me feedback through my email or directly through Amazon, if you choose to read it, as I would love to hear what you think. The link is provided below!
This book is a journey of poetry, prose, affirmations and mantras into the depths of healing, self discovery and self love. A poetic tale of realization and release of the things we allow to accumulate over our souls, dulling our views of ourselves, and subsequently, each other. This is a book of reunion, with ourselves and our Creator. A book that offers words of medicine to facilitate a deep inner healing. I invite you to journey with me, to release what holds you bound and to discover who you truly are, and the potential that you hold, underneath all of the layers.”

Through the Storm, Rainbows are Found: My Journey through Postpartum Depression

Pexels.com

I have had 4 children in 5 years, including a set of twins. I also have had three different births, a c-section, a VBAC with an epidural and a VBAC without any pain medication. Each of my pregnancies and deliveries taught me so much.  I had always envisioned pregnancy and the postpartum period to be filled with bliss and peace. A time where I would be connecting with myself and my unborn on a deeper soul level, and while this connection did occur, I also suffered from severe morning sickness and a whole host of other health issues, which included postpartum depression after each pregnancy.

Because my pregnancies were fairly close to each other, it felt like I would get breaks from the depression, only to be hit with it again. My postpartum depression would come in waves and has been one of the hardest things I have ever gone through. It robbed me of my ability to connect with myself, with my family, to think clearly and make decisions. I lost my ability to reason, to remember and to be patient. Postpartum depression filled me with guilt, shame, and self loathing; as well as decimating my self esteem to a point where I was unable to feel like I was doing anything right or even able to look at myself in the mirror. I also suffered from Postpartum anxiety, intrusive thoughts and the desire to self harm.

My youngest child is almost two years old, and I am just now walking out of the dark forest that is postpartum depression, and into the full light of wholeness and healing. It has been a very long road, but one that I was able to walk and gain strength from. Taking medication for postpartum depression wasn’t an option for me, so I followed my inner guidance and intuition to take the steps needed so that I could heal.

Prayer, positive affirmations, mediation, rest, connecting with God and allowing His love to surround, fulfill and uplift me, yoga, tea, writing, and being patient and gentle with myself when my methods didn’t seem to be working fast enough, or at all, helped me to recover and have a deeper love for myself through this process. Depression is an illness. It is debilitating and can be quite destructive, but it is possible to make it through and become whole. It is possible to feel like yourself again, and to just feel again.

I am living proof, that the greater the storm the more beautiful the rainbow. I can now face any storm with the confidence that trouble doesn’t last always, and that through every storm, rainbows are found.

Hindsight is 20/20 : Living and Learning Life’s Lessons


Pexels.com

How do we know the roads to take, if we have never travelled them before? The words in the phrase ‘Hindsight is 20/20’ embodies the crux of the human experience. It takes into consideration that once we begin our lives here on Earth as infants, we are starting fresh. Inherent knowledge that is within us, will be revealed throughout the course of our lives, but no one has access to a personal handbook or manual for life’s trials and tribulations, for heartbreak and pain, and for accepting and relishing the good times and expressing gratitude. These are all lessons we learn, not by sitting in a classroom, but through experience, which is the greatest teacher of all. 

Pexels.com
To learn the lessons that our soul craves, the very lessons that we signed up for before our physical bodies were formed, we must be involved in situations where the lesson is learned. These lessons are taught everyday within our lives. We can learn so much from the reactions that we have to minor disturbances that disrupts our everyday calm, and also to earth shattering events, from which our lives are changed forever. 

Until we experience these lessons by living them out, we will not know what the right path is for us. Until we experience the effects that a negative reaction can have on those close to us, we will not know that the positive reaction is the one that is most beneficial. Trial and error. That is the song of life. This is nothing to be ashamed of and should be embraced wholeheartedly, because from these trials and errors, comes invaluable knowledge that will be needed along our soul path. 

Pexels.com
When you come out to your car to find the battery is dead and you must wait for a jump, you are being taught patience. When confronted with a situation where you have to share your feelings on another’s actions, you learn that all truth can be communicated in love. In communicating through tough issues where disagreements can occur, you realize that reciprocity and mutuality is important, as all people have thoughts, feelings and perspectives that should be respected and acknowledged, even if they are not agreed upon. Receiving an incorrect order at a restaurant can turn into a lesson in letting go, and an opportunity to demonstrate kindness. It is one thing to read about love and a whole other thing to receive and give love in action. 

The list goes on and on and most of these lessons aren’t even realized until one is looking over the situation in hindsight. When reviewing your life for lessons to be learned, do not count out hindsight to reveal the lessons that may have first appeared to be hidden. 


Place Of Worship


“Go find your place of worship
Look into your pain and find your praise
Every low place in your life
Prepared you for your high place
Every tear you cried is water for
The garden of your victory
And even though you’re in the valley,
Victory comes through your adversity
Go find your place of worship”
Place of Worship – Marvin Sapp

Pexels.com 
Where is this place of worship? Where can we go when life gets to be too much? Where do we turn when answers are unable to be found? Is it possible to gain, and maintain, peace and harmony when unsettling circumstances and situations seem to be a constant threat?

Worship as defined by Merriam-Webster, is “…reverence offered a divine being or supernatural power;” When engaging within an active relationship with our Heavenly Father, worship can become a place. A safe haven, a refuge and a shelter.  Through the act of worship, the act of providing our God with our undivided, loyal, and loving adoration, we create a secret place of rest. This place of rest is available to us always. Worship is one of the keys to unlocking this sacred place, as worship allows us to tap into the divine love of our Creator that surrounds us constantly. Though we are always surrounded by this divine love, we sometimes have a hard time feeling this precious life giving energy and have to be reawakened to its presence. Worship helps us to do this.

Pexels.com
God desires a relationship with His People; His Creations, that were created with, and by intention, and not by chance or cosmic mistake. He desires our conversation, our time, our adoration, appreciation and praise, and He deserves all of these desires. He is never too busy for us. He will never put us on hold and ignore our cries, questions, or pleas. Even if this has seemed to be the case in the past, it is simply not true, as it is out of God’s character to be anything but the utmost good. He desires nothing but the best for each and every one of us.

Our happiness is of utmost importance to Him, and He finds us all deserving of His love, mercy and grace. God does not give in the way that man can give. He does not give with stipulations and invisible strings attached. He gives effortlessly, generously, and from the never ending well of love that He innately is. What God gives to you is yours. What God desires for you is yours.

Just like cultivating any other meaningful relationship within your life, time and effort on your part, is needed. Take the time out of every day to meet God on His terms, and experience the sacred space of worship that can transform your entire being. Take the time out every day to genuinely speak with and listen to God. Allow yourself to be taken into His presence, and bask there.

The Art of Surrender

Pexels.com
Let us face the facts of life on this earthly plane head on. It is not always easy and can sometimes be down right hard. There seem to be a billion and one things to do at all times, and not enough time or energy to get it all done. Humans are driven to continue to do more, be more and experience more at all times. While this is not a negative at all, the constant busyness and hustle and bustle of daily life, can serve to inhibit our connection to the Great Divine.
It is important that we slow down and surrender to feel the fullness of God’s glory in our day to day lives. In order to do this, we must let go. Let go of our expectations. Let go of the plan that we have created for our lives. Let go of our to-do lists. Let go of the million tiny and big thoughts that swirl through our minds constantly. We have to let go of the idea that we are in control. Let go of the notion that we have to be in control of every moment of every day.
We have to give ourselves permission to cast our cares unto the Lord. We have to give ourselves permission to surrender our desires, thoughts, needs, and wants to God, and have faith that He will do just as He has promised, and that He will take care of us. We have to remember that our true nature is love, and surrender unto that love. We have to give ourselves permission to slow down and breathe. Breathe in the security that is the Lord, the security that allows us to surrender so that we can be made whole. Surrender is a gift that we can give to the One who gives so much to us consistently and constantly. Surrender allows us to release the need to have all of the answers, all of the power, all of the control, in favor of allowing our Heavenly Father to take the lead.

Pexels.com
Because God is the epitome of good, of love, and of light, we can always be sure that surrendering to His will, and way, will only manifest good, love and light within our lives. Letting go, allows God the space He needs to work things out in our favor. We can hinder our own blessings and miracles by our desire to hold tightly onto things which we are not meant to hold tightly onto. We produce stress, and unwanted dis-ease, by thinking that we have to be God in our individual worlds and get it all right all by ourselves, when in fact, God wants nothing more but to ease our burden and to make our hearts light.
We cannot lighten a load that we refuse to let go of. Surrender is a constant process, we have to begin each day with a heart that is willing to let go and give to God. We have to make the conscious decision to let go of worry, anxiety, disappointments, irritations and the million other emotions and situations we may encounter, in favor of a lighter heart, a clearer mind, and a spirit that is filled with love and joy.


When Momming Gets Tough

“The sacrifices of God are a broken spirit, A broken and a contrite heart— These, O God, You will not despise.”
Psalms 51:17 NKJV

As a mom it feels like there are some days that just bring you to your knees. And not even just one day in our continuous parade of constant motion, but sometimes, it’s several days strung together where you feel like you just can’t go on. You’re so tired. There’s so much to be done. And you want to enjoy the moments and not just rush through them, but there doesn’t seem like there is time for a break. Not when you have little people clinging to your every limb, word and heart string. Little people who absolutely need you in every single way and are pretty much helpless without you. Even going to the bathroom does not provide solace of time alone, because there is a little person screaming looking for you, or trying to bust the door down or heck, even sitting on your lap while you pee.

At the end of these days, cooking dinner can feel like you’re climbing Mount Everest, and you pass out in bed just to wake up and do it all over again. Relentless. That is a great word to describe motherhood. It doesn’t stop, doesn’t pause, doesn’t give you the moments that you so desperately need sometimes to just sit and catch your breath. In these moments it’s so easy to want to succumb to the feelings of overwhelm, to just cry, because it all feels too much. But in these moments we are the perfect living sacrifices to our wise and benevolent Father, for we realize that our strength just isn’t good enough.

Our strength isn’t enough to lift us up and give us what we need to carry on, for if it was we wouldn’t get to the impossible place of overwhelm that we so often find ourselves in.
The days when we feel like we are just barely keeping ourselves afloat, are days that we should rejoice for everything that is making us feel this way. For we are being humbled. Our spirits and hearts are being broken, to help us to realize how much we need Jesus and how He can help us if we cast our cares onto Him. We realize that God can work best through us when we are not in the way, and just as we will always do anything for our babies, we are God’s babies and He will do anything for us. That includes carrying us when we need to be carried and offering us a rest in Him that cannot be achieved elsewhere.

I believe motherhood is designed to make us lean on God so that our children can lean on us. Being a mother is a job that we can not do on our own and we absolutely need the help of God to do. We must allow God to take care of us, so that we can take care of others and to do this, we must be humbled.