July 18, 2016

Fighting from Victory, not for Victory

Count yourself lucky, how happy you must be—

    you get a fresh start,
    your slate’s wiped clean.
Count yourself lucky—

    God holds nothing against you
    and you’re holding nothing back from him.
When I kept it all inside,

    my bones turned to powder,
    my words became daylong groans.
The pressure never let up;

    all the juices of my life dried up.
Then I let it all out;

    I said, “I’ll make a clean breast of my failures to God.”
Suddenly the pressure was gone—

    my guilt dissolved,
    my sin disappeared.
These things add up. Every one of us needs to pray;
    when all hell breaks loose and the dam bursts
    we’ll be on high ground, untouched

~Psalm 32:1-6~

My first thought as I read this passage was GRACE. Oh, what grace is extended to us. My next thought was this...

Why do we choose to focus so heavily on the battles we loose instead of fixing our gaze on the war He has one?
My Dad is a history buff. I had this ruler when I was younger that had all of the presidents with the years of their presidency listed on it. I use to love calling out a random year and having my Dad tell me who the president was. {:not once was I ever able to stump him}. I also use to always have to weigh out whether it was worth asking a history lover like him a question for my history homework in high school or college because I knew it would probably come with a 20-30 minute lecture to answer the question - instead of the short one sentence I needed. 

What I learned either from history class or my dad's lectures was that while winning battles were important in winning the war, losing a battle didn't mean losing the war. 

This life is a war. And well, if you are a Christian this war got a bit more fierce. There is a war for your possession at this moment. Heaven has an agenda for you in this life, but so does hell. 

The good news is, if you belong to Jesus, the victory of the war has been sealed. Your eternity is secure through your belief in Jesus. One day there will be no more waring your health, finances, relationships, addictions, pride, and the list goes on and on. But, for now we are left to fight the battles on this earth.

In the war against our flesh to stop drinking, stop lying, stay in church, be committed to our spouse, to be the person we are called to be, there are battles that arise that we will have to fight. And I hate to be Bitter Betty, but in this war we are going to "lose some battles". It is ultimately because we are part of fallen and sinful humanity. When you loose a battle Satan would love to tell you that once you have lost the battler it is all over. You are done for. Toast. But, that's not true. You may have lost a battle to something you struggle against, but there is still a war to win.  

How do we wage this war? Through the Holy Spirit. He is your ever present help. Through Him you have been given authority and power to fight the battles. The power that lives within you, because you possess your helper, Holy Spirit, means you are stronger than any stronghold or temptation that comes against you {:1 John 4:4:}

We may not win every battle, but because of Holy Spirit in us we can win the war against the battles we face. 

Like I mentioned earlier, the victory is won. We have the incredible advantage of fighting our battles from victory and not for victory. The victory is already ours in Jesus because when he died and rose again he took the penalty of sin, shame, sickness, and death so that we could live with all of the benefits of Christ {:Psalm 103:}. When we get a revelation of fighting from victory and not for victory we can fight our battles with confidence and not condemnation. We have confidence not in ourselves but in the work of the Jesus and we are not condemned and written off because of the battles we lose. 

It is so much easier to fight the battles when you have the confidence of victory. What mindset will you fight the battles with you are facing? 

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July 14, 2016

In My College Kitchen - Sweet Potato, Apple Skillet {:Paleo, Whole 30, AIP:}

I mentioned to you at our coffee date earlier this week that dealing with my autoimmune condition since being in Australia has been a bit trickier to say the least. I have been dealing with chronic fatigue {:like two naps a day fatigue:} and inflimation, weight gain, foggy brain, hair loss, and all sorts of other weird symptoms that no one told me comes along with an unmanaged autoimmune condition. 
While going to school here I have learned that my body does not manage stress well. Due to the high amounts of cortisol in my body and my efforts of working hard and eating healthy just weren't enough. I am relearning my body and a huge part of that has been incorporating an Autoimmune Paleo lifestyle. At the moment I am still on the elimination process where the amount of foods I can have is quit limiting, but I have learned just what a valuable resource Pinterest can be! 
I shared with you my favorite lunch to take with me on the go. Today I am sharing my new go-to breakfast. It is easy, cheap, and I can usually make enough for an entire week in less than 30 min. 
Try it and let me know what you think below.
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