Run YOUR Race

You know those days—those hard days—when you feel completely defeated as a mother? I was having one of those days not too long ago. I was struggling in every way. I felt like a failure. I was comparing my son to others. I was comparing myself to other mothers. I thought for sure I was doing everything wrong. I was tired. My mind was filled with doubt, fear, frustration, and confusion. Can anybody relate? I needed to hear from God. I needed His guidance, perspective, and encouragement.

I took some time to try to be still in God’s presence, to quiet my mind, so I would be able to hear God speak to my heart. Practicing stillness before the Lord is my daily lifeline, but on this day, I was only restless. My mind was racing, and my heart was troubled. I could not quiet my soul. I knew Satan was trying to tempt me to give up. I kept pressing in, pushing back the noise and seeking the Lord. Eventually the noise parted, my mind became quiet, and I felt at peace, like I was resting in His arms. And then I heard His still, small voice whisper guidance, perspective, and encouragement that would forever change me as a mother. [Read more…]

I’ll Never Be Free From This Financial Mess!

At one point in my life I didn’t believe financial freedom was possible. My husband and I were $250,000 in debt including a mortgage, two school loans, another small loan, two car loans and $40,000 in credit card debt. We were struggling to make ends meet even though we were both working two jobs. No matter how much money we brought in, we could never seem to get ahead. Life was very stressful. We were drowning in debt and were exhausted from living life this way. We were in an overwhelming financial disaster and had no clue how to get out.

Can you relate?

We started praying. God could have answered our prayers by performing some sort of financial miracle, but He didn’t. And you know what? I am really glad He didn’t. Instead, He answered our prayers by revealing to us some important truths about the situation we were in, and how He was going to guide us out of it: [Read more…]

Submission…Is It Worth It?

What do you think when you hear the biblical command, “Wives submit to your husband (Colossians 3:18)?” How does it make you feel to be told that you are supposed to submit? If you have a negative reaction, you’re not alone. I spent many years of my marriage resisting this biblical command. Thankfully, God has changed my heart, and I have come to recognize that biblical submission is truly beautiful.

As I look closely at my past mindset, I can see four primary reasons I resisted submitting to my husband:

  • I thought I was more spiritually mature than my husband. I was the one spending more time with God and studying the Word. Tim wasn’t seeking the Lord like I was. It is safer if I lead, right?
  • I liked being in control and was determined to have things done my way. I thought my way always made more sense, or was better, or I would manipulate Tim into believing my way was best. I felt more peaceful if I was controlling everything and everyone. God wants me to feel peaceful, doesn’t He?
  • I wanted independence and freedom to live life and make my own decisions without having to “ask” for permission. I am an adult, and I should be able to do what makes ME happy…right? Doesn’t God want me to be happy?
  • I was fearful of submission. I didn’t trust Tim to be the leader. I had a list of all the things I needed from him, or to see flowing out of him, before I would dare submit to him. I mean, who really submits to someone who is a jerk at times or who is consumed with things other than God. God wouldn’t expect me to submit to someone like that, would He?

After many years of discontent, struggle, and distrust in my marriage, God began to reveal the truth about submission: [Read more…]

How to have a Beautiful Marriage

Encourage one another

Tim came home for his break this morning and I was sharing something with him that I was struggling with and he encouraged me, discerned the situation and told me exactly what to do. I was immediately uplifted. I looked at him, smiled and said, “what would I ever do without you” and jokingly said, “don’t ever leave me.” He said, “I would never leave you baby.” Then about 10 mins later he started sharing something with me that he was struggling with and I encouraged him, discerned the situation and told him exactly what I thought he should do. He immediately felt uplifted. He looked at me, smiled, and repeated exactly what I said just a few minutes earlier, “what would I ever do without you,” and then jokingly said, “don’t ever leave me.” And I said, “I will never leave you baby.”

I share this because marriage can be beautiful if you are willing to communicate your heart openly to one another. Truly take the time to listen to each other. Respect each other’s biblical roles…wives submit (respect) your husband, husbands love your wife and let her play her role as your helpmate. Encourage one another in the word of God. Uplift one another. Be each other’s greatest fan, greatest support and biggest cheerleader. Speak the truth in love. Pray together. Have the hard conversations together. Don’t go to bed angry. Enjoy life together. Like I said marriage can be beautiful. Tim and I weren’t always like this. To be honest about 10 years ago we were about to file for divorce but we decided to keep trying. Something in us just couldn’t let go of each other despite how bad our marriage was and how divided we were at the time. Over the years as we have placed God at the very center of our marriage we have grown, our marriage has transformed into something beautiful and our love has deepened for each other. [Read more…]

How to Prepare for the Storms of Life

I am amazed…but not really… 😉 that just a few nights ago Tim and I were talking about the what ifs. What if there was a large earthquake and there was a tsunami threat to Hawaii where we currently live. We talked about how that would play out if we were hit by a tsunami. Well as of two hours ago Hawaii is under a tsunami watch due to a large earthquake in Chile..(update…the waves created by the earthquake settled down before arriving to the islands.) We figured major power outage for us and prices going up and supplies running low. That night we felt lead to go through our emergency kits.  We also felt a prompting to go to the store to get more supplies, food and cash…just in case the leading of the Holy Spirit was correct 🙂

I love living tuned into the presence of God. He promises to take care of us and supply all our needs. We need to just take the time to stay plugged into Him daily and listen to Him. This is why I wrote the book Living Still, to teach you how to stay in step with the Holy Spirit…how to live in the presence of God daily…how to hear and listen to the Spirit of God. Times like these I am so grateful I choose to be still with God as often as I do so I can be prepared and peaceful in the midst of any storm and be His light to all who are around me during a time of need.

So the key to being prepared for the storms of life is to take the time to be still and listen to God…to keep your ear tuned into Him. Do you need help learning how to do this, then take a look at my book Living Still.  I am confident it will encourage you and help you.

Be Love, Give Love

Abby

The Power and Beauty of Truly Submitting to My Husband

Why is submission such a hard word for us ladies to swallow…to deeply embrace as a command from God? What causes us to be disobedient to what God has asked us to do as wives? What causes us to resist this bible verse…wives submit to your husbands? (Ephesians 5:23 & Colossians 3:18) I can tell you what caused me to resist it for years. Maybe some of these will ring true to you as well.

  • I thought I was more spiritually mature, so I believed I couldn’t trust Tim to be the leader.  I mean I was the one spending time with God more and reading the bible and other powerful books to help me grow as a Christian. Tim wasn’t seeking The Lord like I was. Tim would suggest something for our family and I immediately would counter it with some self-righteous comment. I mean I hear from God more because I am spending more time with Him.  It is safer if I lead. God would rather I lead, right?
  • I had control issues and I wanted things my way and done my way. I fought so much with Tim over this. I thought my way made more sense or was better all the time. I would even throw comments in like “that is not the way my dad taught me to do it” and immediately I would try to control Tim’s every move and resist him in every way. It was My My My Way.  I was determined to have my way in everything.
  • I wanted independence and freedom to live life and make decisions the way I wanted without having to “ask” for permission. I mean I am adult and I should be able to do what makes ME happy…right? Doesn’t God want me to be happy? Tim was holding me back from my true happiness and I felt controlled by him saying no to something I wanted to do. Before I really learned the beauty of true submission I rebelled so much and went ahead and did things the way I wanted or I manipulated Tim to believe that what I wanted to do was the best.  Isn’t that what Sarah did to Abraham and how did that turn out? (Genesis 16)
  • I thought if Tim would do this or that then I would feel more comfortable submitting to him. I was fearful of submission. I didn’t trust Tim to be the leader. I had a list of all the things I needed from him or to see flowing out of him before I would dare submit to him. I mean who really submits to someone who is a jerk at times or consumes with things other than Jesus. Jesus wouldn’t expect me to submit to someone like that would He?

So those are my main reasons I resisted submitting to Tim as the head of our household…as the leader of our home and family.  Now let me share what I experienced and what I have learned since I understand more clearly the beauty of true submission to my husband and why God ask me to do it. I hope my experience can save you some stress and pain. I hope you will grab onto this wisdom and apply it. [Read more…]

Why I Deactivated My Facebook Account

Recently I deactivated my Facebook account. Why you might ask?

To be honest I have been pondering doing it for awhile now….months. I have literally wrestled with whether or not to let my Facebook account go. I have found myself so torn between the amount of time it takes away from me being fully present with my 4 year old son and my husband….my family…my number one ministry. You see I love encouraging others. I love to write uplifting posts on Facebook but the domino effect that happens after I post something was the big problem. The likes, comments, shares, messages sent to me regarding the post was so great but very distracting and time consuming. I loved knowing that what I felt lead to write was having an effect on others and people were being encouraged and touched but not at the cost of taking precious time away from my number one ministry. To be honest I began to feel like I was becoming more drawn to Facebook to help people than I was to my own family at times. I reached for my phone first thing in the morning to see what was going on in the Facebook world and at night I was snuggling up with my phone and Facebook. My time with God was slowly but surely getting pushed to the back. I was justifying my time on Facebook because, well…I was encouraging people….I was reading some good stuff on Facebook at times too, like bible verses and other inspiring post, so that should count for my time with God, right? In the midst of writing positive posts and reassuring others, it seemed I was getting sucked into the 24/7 reality show of the life of my “friends”. My mind was becoming noisy and chaotic again. And when my mind is noisy and chaotic, fears rise up within me. It was becoming an addiction. I felt convicted many times that something needed to change. I hungered for that deep place of stillness again.

[Read more…]

The Traffic Jams of Life

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Recently I got stuck in a major traffic jam. To top it off my husband, who had  just been released from the hospital after having shoulder surgery, was in the passenger seat and my 4 year old was in the back seat.  The traffic was so thick and barely moving for hours. For long periods of time it wasn’t moving at all. There was nothing I could do. The situation was completely out of my control but how I responded to it was in my control.  I chose to remain calm and peaceful. For a couple hours, both Shia and Tim were asleep. I took advantage of the stillness time with the Lord and He began speaking to my heart. He said, “this traffic jam is much like your journey in life as you are growing in Me. Little by little I chisel away the junk within you. It takes time and lots of patience as you trust Me, the master potter, to mold you as I see fit. Sometimes you feel you are moving at snail speed in life, while other times you feel you aren’t moving or progressing forward at all.” There were times during the traffic jam I did gain speed up to 20 mph, I was hopeful it was over but it was for such a short time and then back to 0-5 mph. At this point I did want to cry in frustration, no one likes to be slowed back down in life when you just gain some momentum. But I regained my focus and chose to stay calm and peaceful. The Lord began speaking again. [Read more…]

God Will Reveal Himself To You

God is Love

I was struggling today. My heart was heavy. I was weary. Fear was trying to take over me. I needed comforted. So where do I run? I run to my God, my loving Father in Heaven. I chose to be still and I asked Him to lead me to verses that would comfort me. I was going through my bible reading verse after verse, searching for those verses that would speak directly to my heart. I was searching with all my heart….like I was searching for hidden treasure. I knew God was able to speak to me through His word. I had to just keep searching for those treasures. I had to remain in that “place of stillness” until I found it. Here are the two verses (treasures) that spoke directly to my heart.

Childen Need Respect, Time, and Love

Children are the most important work

Something that aches my heart…to hear a child say mommy, mommy, mommy, watch me, look mommy, look, mom, MOM, MOM, mooommmmmmmyyyy (or daddy) and the child is ignored and then answered with an intense WHAT!! I have learned that children need our time and love and if we give this to them wholeheartedly, without them having to demand it, and we are fully present regularly, then their love tanks feel full and this nagging like I mentioned above doesn’t occur as much, if at all. [Read more…]