Archive for June, 2010

A Little Bit of Willingness, Goes a Long Way

Here is a story from a student at SWITCH. May this touch your heart, and challenge us to be willing to be used by God.

My life before SWITCH I was living with my grandma. I was always sad and upset. I really was just always scared of my family. I was being sexually abused by 3 different family members: My grandpa and my two brothers. My grandma was always mean to me. She abused me physically, emotionally and mentally. DHS would come to our house all  the time but my grandma would teach us to lie so nobody would find out how our life really was. I hated myself, and my life. I wasn’t even sure if there was a God. My life was so terrible. My grandma had adopted me when I was 6. My mom was into drugs and still is. I don’t know who my dad is, and I haven’t met either of them. My grandma would always hit me, and yell at me. She would tell me that I am not good enough. She would put me down so much that eventually I started degrading myself. I would believe all the lies she would tell me, like, I’m a slut, and a whore, a fake. I was never able to accept compliments. I thought I was ugly and disgusting. I was always giving in to people and letting them use me. I was so lost. And I couldn’t stand up for myself. I couldn’t trust anyone enough to tell them what I would go through every day.

Since being a part of SWITCH I met Aymee Farris, my SWITCH leader. I told her about my life at my grandmas. I told her everything. DHS got involved and I ended up going to foster care. Aymee, went through the foster parent program so she could be a foster parent to me, so that I could come live with her. She started bringing me to SWITCH after I started living with her. After a few weeks I recommitted my life to Christ. Aymee and I talk a lot about forgiveness and I don’t hate myself. I am learning about God and growing closer to Him. I have been very scared lately though because I thought I was going to get sent back to my grandma’s. Yesterday, we went to court and my grandma gave up her rights to me. I am still living with Aymee, and she is going to adopt me!! A lot has changed since I started going to SWITCH. I am figuring out who I really am. I am becoming a new person. I am getting a chance at a new life. And things are so much better. I am learning so much so fast and I am able to enjoy myself. I am no longer allowing people to take advantage of me. I am not scared anymore. I don’t have to go home to abuse every day.
I am becoming a new and better Christian and person. I am actually happy.


Smart Vs. Bold-Which One Are You?

I wrote this post about a year ago, but it’s always a great reminder:

I read in a book recently that, “Often in the real world its not the smart that get ahead, it’s the bold.” Which I’ve seen to be so true as I continue to get older.

“We all have tremendous potential, and we all are blessed with gifts. Yet, the one thing that holds all of us back is some degree of self-doubt.”

“…excessive fear and self-doubt {are} the greatest detractors of personal genius.”

Most people “know the answers, yet lack the courage to act on the answer.”

That’s why… “Often in the real world its not the smart that get ahead, it’s the bold.”

What about you? Could you use a little more boldness? Is God calling you to do something and you’re held back by fear?Would you rather be smart or bold? 

–Quotes taken from “Rich Dad, Poor Dad”—Robert T. Kiyosaki

A Surprise Delivery!

Late last night marked the arrival of my newest nephew, Beau Wrightson Meadows. Why is this particular arrival so surprising? None of us knew if the baby was going to be a boy or a girl! We waited, gathered in the hospital waiting room until 11:15pm when he graced us with his presence. This is the very first male Meadows grandchild. Finally, the Meadows name will be carried on!

photo1Right after he was born!

photo2The happy family!

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The Antidote for Control

If you’re anything like me, giving up control can be a difficult thing. When we got married, Cody took over our finances. I was always better with money, in my opinion, but I realized this was an area I should let my husband oversee. As frightening as it was at first, since my husband thinks the Apple store is more like a candy store, I let go. My confidence in his ability to oversee our resources brought more respect to him than anything I could say in words. Trust

But it was more than confidence that allowed me to take my hands off the steering wheel, and let him drive. It was trust. I trusted my husband to take care of us, to make sure we were tithing, giving, saving, paying off debt, and paying bills on time. This trust didn’t come overnight. It was built overtime. It was built through love.

Trust is the antidote for control. When we learn to trust God with our lives we will realize we need to give up our elusion of control. He’s ultimately in control of our lives anyway, but he’s a gentleman. He will wait, patiently for us to realize his rightful place in our lives.

But how do we get to a place where we trust God? I mean, trust Him completely, with every aspect of our lives. Well, it takes time, but not just time like the span of a couple years, it takes time spent, time spent and invested in Jesus and your relationship with him. Cody and I didn’t just date for a year, we spent time together, everyday of that year, getting to know each other’s hearts, minds, dreams, fears, strengths and weaknesses.

The more time you spend with Christ, the more you’ll learn to trust Him. You will begin to see that He always has your best interest in mind. You might even see that in his love, he withholds the things we’ve been trying to control until we learn to submit under his leadership.

Trust is the antidote for control. So let me ask you: Do you trust Him? Do you trust that He knows what is best for you? Are you willing to give up the control and allow Him to do miraculous things in your life? When you are, you will walk into a life free from the worry of control, a life full of trust.

Share your thoughts on trust, in the comments below.

The Need for Control

FearIt all started back when wearing fig leaves was cool, back when Adam and Eve and their choice to eat the infamous forbidden fruit caused our demise. We’ve all heard the story before: the rebellious woman ate the fruit and gave some to her passive husband. If you’ve read any John Eldridge books you’re familiar with the fall of man and what it has done to the hearts and minds of men and women since that moment. What’s interesting to me, if you continue to look at women throughout the Bible, you’ll often find a controlling tendency under the innocence.

Take a look at Sarah, Abraham’s wife. Since she thought she was barren, she took it into her own hands to make sure her husband had a child. She gave her maidservant to her husband and they had a child. But was that God’s original plan?

What about Rebekah, Isaac’s wive? Wanting her favorite son to have the father’s blessing, she disguised Jacob and sent him to his father once Esua was out hunting.

Rachel, Jacob’s wife was barren. In her fear and worry, she demanded he give her a son. When she still could not conceive she too gave her maidservant to her husband to bare a child.

Where does this need for control come from? I believe that every woman who has a tendency to control fears something. Fear is the fuel behind control. Show me a woman who controls and I will show you a woman who fears something.

The single woman who tends to always control the relationships she’s in fears being alone. The problem is, the more she controls, the more destruction she brings to those relationships.

The wife who controls her husband fears that one day he will leave her. The problem is, the more she controls, the more he may want to leave her!

The woman who controls her children either fears that they won’t turn out right, or that something bad might happen to them. The problem is, the more she controls, the greater the risk of them rebelling, or growing up without a mind of their own.

Fear fuels our need for control. It is the root of control. Insecurity–not being sure, certain or secure, makes us do things that are not healthy for our relationships. Tomorrow, we will look at the antidote for control.

Until then, share your thoughts on fear. What do you fear? Do you find that you try to control things because of your fear? Think back over the last month. Have you tried to control situations, people, outcomes? Why? What is the root of your fear?

Control–The Daughter of Insecurity

Control. It’s a funny thing. Elusive, though it may be, the minute we think we have it, is probably the minute it couldn’t be farther from our grasp. When we think we have it we feel a sense of security. But if we were to take the rose-tinted glasses off, we’d realize it is a false security, one that only hushes the whines of our worries for a brief moment. Control is the daughter of insecurity. And buying into the lie that we are in control will only keep the chains of insecurity wrapped tightly around us. Puppeteering

As women, control is our security blanket. If we think we’re in control than we feel better about the situation. If we know we’re not in control, we will do anything to try and take it back. A few “hypothetical” stories will help us grasp a better understanding and might shed some light on our own tendancies to take control.

There was a woman I once knew who was so controlling she repelled everyone around her. Her children were the main recipients of her controlling behavior, however her controlling nature always found a way to overflow into the other relationships around her. As a successful business woman she used the thing she felt would bring her the most security: money. She used money to control those around her, including her children, friends, friends of her children and anyone she felt like she needed to control. This woman never smiled.

Early in my marriage I noticed I would often use my emotions to try and make my husband do what I wanted. I quickly found out, he wasn’t falling for my covert manipulation. When I realized this was a form of control and ultimately a form of insecurity I had to do some soul searching. Since then I always check myself to make sure I’m not using my tears, anger, or silence to control my husband and make him do what I want.

If control is the daughter of insecurity than worry and fear are the sisters of control. These illegitamate children of insecurity must be stopped. In the next few posts we’ll be taking a more in depth look at why we feel the need to control, and the andadote for taking care of our controlling tendancies.

In the mean time, share your thoughts on the subject of control. Do you find yourself trying to control people around you? Where does this need come from? How does this affect your relationships?

The Dusty Golf Shoes

When I was younger I wrote an essay called the Dusty Golf Shoes. In celebration of Father’s Day, I would like to rebirth the high school essay in honor of my dad, who I affectionately call “Daddy-Honey.”

The Dusty Golf ShoesGolf Shoes

My siblings and I always loved to play outside. Whether it be HORSE on the basketball court, or skating with our old worn out, blue roller skates on the bumpy drive way, being outside was the best. One hot summer day in particular I remember pulling out our old roller skates. Matching the sizes was always an issue, with six to seven different pairs that we had on hand.

On this day, my sisters and I had all the skates pulled out of the shelf that was in the garage. When I went back to get the rest of them I noticed another pair of shoes I had never seen before. They looked like they were once white, but a thick layer of dust covered their leather face. They were smashed from living under the weight of roller skates for who knows how long. The tassels on the top of the shoe looked chewed, maybe from a mouse or another critter that found the leathery texture tasty. I pulled them out and dusted them off a little. They were big. Much bigger than my feet and the laces were stiff and brittle. I took them out to my sisters who were already putting on their skates.

I ran around to the back yard where my mom was planting some pots and pulling weeds out of the flower beds.
“Mom, look what I found!”
She turned around and wiped the sweat off her forehead with the back of her hand, “Oh, those are your dad’s old golf shoes.”
“I didn’t know dad played golf.”
“Well, he used to.”
“Why doesn’t he play anymore?”
“Well, it’s usually pretty expensive, plus your dad likes to spend his free time with you kids.”

I can honestly tell you, at that moment, a lump formed in my throat. I don’t remember how old I was, but I was old enough to realize my dad’s sacrifice. I got a funny feeling, almost an embarrassed one, like when you walk into someone’s serious conversation and you don’t realize it until they ask you to leave. But dad never said anything about us kids interrupting his life. He never talked about how much he missed his life before us, or how much he’d love to do the things he once did.

I thought about him, working out in this heat, to provide for all us kids. Working hard so that our mom could stay home with us, homeschool us, and take care of us. The thought stopped me dead in my tracks. What other things has dad sacrificed? Do I even know what he likes to do in his free time? Does he have a hobby? Something he does just for himself? I wracked my brain but came up with nothing. I looked at the dusty gold shoes again and felt overwhelmed with thankfulness for my daddy.

To this day, I have remembered this moment. This was the moment I realized that a true man is one of self-sacrifice. A true, Godly man is one who will lay down his time, his hobbies, his life for the ones he loves. It has been the guiding light that led me to my own Godly, self-sacrificing man in Cody.

The Dusty Golf Shoes are just a picture of the sacrificial life my dad has led, and whether he knows it or not his life has taught me more than I can say in words. So this is a tribute to my Daddy Honey. Thank you for giving up your life to be the best dad in the whole wide world. I love you so much.

Happy Father’s Day!

David After Dentist

This is a hilarious video of a kid coming off laughing gas from the dentist. We showed it at SWITCH last night during offering to fill a gap in our experience. Our kids loved it! It will make you laugh!

My Mid-Year Resolutions

Every year around this time, I like to make some mid-year goals, or resolutions. Most people wait for a new year to roll around, but I like to see if I’m hitting my targets and compare myself to where I was the last time I made my mid-year resolutions.

Here are last years mid-year goals: March 2009Target

Physical: It might be funny to say, but I’d really like to I WILL get into a two-piece bathing suit this summer. I’ve never worn a two-piece and been comfortable in it. This year is the year to be different. I can honestly say I’ve reached this goal. I wouldn’t say I’m completely comfortable in it, but I think that has more to do with my frame of mind than it does the way I look. Of course I will continue to work hard so that I can enjoy this summer in my own body.

Financial: I’d like to I WILL pay off my car by the end of the year—December 2009. Paid off my car December 2009.

Writing: I WILL have the first draft of my book written by December 2009. Did not accomplish this goal. I blame it on the wedding!

Ministry: I WILL be revamping my website to upload videos and get on a speakers rotation so that I can have more opportunities to speak. This will happen by July 2009. I uploaded some videos to my web site and revamped the look, however I’m still working on getting some speaking engagements outside of LC.

For this year’s mid-year resolutions:

Physical–Continue working hard and eating healthy. I will lose 10-15 pounds by the end of July 2010.

Financial–Cody and I bought a Toyota Sequoia a couple months ago. We’d like it to be paid off by the end of this year, or by January of 2011.

Writing–Continue blogging everyday (Monday–Friday) for the remainder of this year. Get more readers, commenters, subscribers and Twitter followers to spread my message of overcoming insecurity. Complete one chapter of book by the end of this year.

Ministry–Start a small group for women around Overcoming Insecurity and Identity in Christ by August 2010.

How about you? Want to make some mid-year resolutions so we can keep each other accountable? It’s a good practice in self-discipline and follow through. Why not take a crack at it? Leave your resolutions in the comment section. What do you need to do to make sure you hit your target?

5 Ways to Make Sure You’re Always Insecure

Freedom from insecurity is a lot of work. Probably more work than you’re willing to give. The easy thing is to stay insecure and never allow yourself to break out of the chains that bind you.

Here are 5 sure-fire ways to make sure you always stay insecure.

5. Be a self-centered person. Always think everything is about you.

4. Worry constantly about what others are thinking of you. (Afterall, since it’s all about you, they are always thinking about you.)

3. Put others down any chance you get. If you don’t feel secure, no one else should.

2. Never believe or speak positively about yourself–you wouldn’t want people thinking you are prideful.

And the number one way to always make sure you’re insecure:

1. Believe every lie that comes your way. If you’re thinking it, it must be true.

Follow these simple steps to ensure that you will never find freedom from insecurity.

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