Preaching to Me

Have any of you ever sat through a sermon and felt like the preacher was preaching just to you? No matter how crowded the church is, it feels like it’s just you and the preacher….. He is just nailing point after point and you feel like there’s a big sign over your head pointing you out. You are just praying that he finishes soon so you can run out of the church as fast as you can. I’m not going to lie, I’ve felt this before.

But not this past Sunday.

Quite the opposite actually. I did feel that Pastor Rick Bezet, of New Life Church (Greater Little Rock campus), was preaching directly to me, but I didn’t want to run out of the church….

God was working on my heart. He used Pastor Rick to reach me in a setting where I was completely engulfed in His word and surrounded by a faithful and understanding community of believers.

This particular message was about our words. We cannot control our words, but we can control our hearts. If our hearts are full of sinful wants and desires our mouths will surely speak them. The tongue is the hardest to tame.

James 3:1-12

We have to let go of the words that hurt us. They are not from God. He did not intend for us to hear that we weren’t good enough, smart enough, skinny enough, pretty enough or whatever other lies that are living in your heart. We have to forgive the people who said these things to us. We have to return to the goodness of God and remember His call for our lives.

Sometimes it praises our Lord and Father, and sometimes it curses those who have been made in the image of God. James 3:9 NLT

Father God please help me to only speak things from a clean and pure heart. Please help me to forgive the things others have said to me and please let others forgive me for the things I have said to them. Help me to be more careful of my words. Amen.

with love, Jana

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Thank You Lord

After a recent fellowship with a new friend, I feel lead to reflect on how truly blessed I am and give thanks to the One who makes all of it possible.

10 Things I’m Thankful For

Scenery.

Sunrises, sunsets, oceans, mountains, forests, animals, etc. God made us a beautiful place to live! I’m reminded of His goodness anytime I look out and view this world with a thankful heart. One of my favorite places to catch a glimpse of His beauty is on my way home.

Starbucks (& double star day)

Thank you Jesus for grande iced white chocolate mocha with no whip cream in the summertime! Starbucks is my jam since their coffee is more like a dessert and they offer an app that lets you earn rewards. During the month of June, I was blessed enough to have had my drink paid for twice! If that’s not a gift from the Lord, then I don’t know what is.

PTO.

Praise the Lord for Paid Time Off! As much as I love my job, I love my sanity even more. Sometimes when you love something so much and let it consume your everything you get burnt out. It is so refreshing to come back to work with a renewed excitement after a few days off.

Love. 

I just love love! How could you not? I am so thankful for the everlasting love that the Lord shows us. And one day, when the time is right, God will present me with the man He made for me to love. But until then, I will keep on loving Him and everything He provides for me.

Books. 

I have become quiet the book hoarder over the past few months. Books are an amazing escape and they typically help me learn something new and improve my life – yes I love self-help books! My friend Colleen noticed that I have been getting into reading a lot more lately and recommended that I get a library card (why didn’t I think of that?). So I am thankful for the public library system!

Family.

The Lord knew I needed a family who constantly supports me, makes me laugh and feeds me. I don’t think I can emphasis the “feeds me” part enough….. But really, God gave me an amazing family. I couldn’t imagine my life without being close to them. Even though they joke that they found me under a rock or that my siblings are going to sell me when my parents die, they are my foundation and I am so thankful to have them. I know I don’t say it enough, but I appreciate and love y’all!

Friends.

I am so extremely thankful for good friends! I have such a love and support system from them that I hope everyone experiences in this life. Thank you guys for always listening to me complain about my latest inconveniences, liking ALLLLLLL of my Instagram pics, getting tattoos, running marathons without training, spending every holiday with me and letting me know that I’m not a loser for not having a valentines date for the 3rd year in a roll (but who’s counting?), pushing me to better myself, and so much more!

Fellowship.

Thank you Jesus for taking away what I thought I needed and giving me what I truly need: fellowship. Thank you for putting inspiring people in my life and giving me the opportunity to grow deeper with You in a loving and supporting community.

Prayer.

Thank You Lord for letting us have free and constant communication with You. Thank You for hearing my prayers and giving me the answers and comfort I need. Thank You for allowing me to grow closer and more intimate with You. Thank You, thank You, thank You Jesus!

Fashion.

Lord knows I’m thankful for clothes and makeup and all things frilly and girly! Lord also knows that my bank account is less thankful. The good Lord has provided me with my dream job in the fashion industry and with all the fashion necessities that go along with this. I am thankful that my God is bigger (and more abundant) than my bank account!

 

thankful heart.jpgImage via Pinterest.

Lord please give me a thankful heart each day. Help me to see all of Your marvelous works even on my darkest of days.

with love, Jana

Difficult Seasons

I am going through a very difficult season in life. I have grown apart from friends who I thought would be with me for the rest of my days and have learned hurtful lessons the past few months. I trust what the Lord has in store for my life. So no matter what He takes from me, I will rejoice in knowing that He has something even more amazing planned for my future!

5 Scriptures for Difficult Seasons

The Lord is close to the brokenhearted and saves those who are crushed in spirit. Psalm 34:18 NIV

Jesus replied, “You don’t understand now what I am doing, but someday you will.” John 13:7 NLT

In the same way I will not cause pain without allowing something new to be born,” says the Lord. “If I cause you the pain, I will not stop you from giving birth to your new nation,” says your God.
Isaiah 66:9 NCV

Delight yourself in the Lordand he will give you the desires of your heart.
Psalm 37:4 ESV

Blessed is she who has believed that the Lord would fulfill his promises to her!”
Luke 1:45 NIV

difficult seasons
Image via Pinterest

Lord give me the strength I need to make it through this trying season. I trust that Your plan for my life is better than anything I could dream up for myself. Help me to be patient in my waiting. 

with love, Jana

You Are Beloved

Heartbroken. Unworthy. Not enough. Fake.

I have been feeling so empty lately. Longing for something to fill the voids of my lonely heart. In my desperation, I allowed fear and earthly approval make a home inside of me. I let things and people so deep in my heart that I didn’t realize the damage they were actually doing.

If you find yourself in a season similar to the one I’m in –

  • Listen to Beloved by Jordan Feliz. Keep this message close to your heart at all times.
  •  Remember God is for you, never against you. He is with you when you go through deep waters (Isaiah 43:2).
  • Pray. God always answers prayers. Maybe He doesn’t give you the answer you think you want, but His plan and His timing is always better than anything we could ever imagine.

God restores broken hearts. He makes us whole. We are worthy – worthy of love, Gods grace and mercy, and so much more.

romans 9 25.jpgImage via Pinterest

God help me to remember that I am Yours and that You alone fill my heart with purpose and love. Help me to show Your love and goodness to others today.

with love, Jana

Ephesians 2:1-10

We are Made Alive with Christ and are no longer bound to our sins and desires of this world. Verse 3 really hits home with me: following the passionate desires and inclinations of our sinful nature. Lord knows I’ve followed my wants of this world. But it is by Gods mercy and grace that I’m saved.

God saved you by His grace when you believed. And you can’t take credit for this; it is a gift from God. – Ephesians 2:8 NLT


Image via Pinterest

Father God, thank you for allowing me to freely share your love and grace. Keep me close to Your spirit so I know the difference between what is from You and what is from this world. I thank you for your grace.

with love, Jana