Wednesday, February 19, 2014

When you meet a blog friend in real life...blessed!

     Hi blog friends! How are the each of you doing? Boy, do I have a lot to tell the each of you! First of all, I just got home from California last weekend, and I had an amazing trip. I went to California Adventure and Disneyland with one of my best friends, and was able to attend my first communication conference with her and watch her present her research on blogging. Here are a few pictures from our trip:

{below: Julia and I in the front row, having a blast on the "Tower of Terror" ride at Disneyland. I was just a little bit scared...maybe ;)}

{below: reunited with Tigger at Disneyland! Love that guy!}

{below: Julia and I hanging out in one of the Disney shops, trying on Minnie ears!}

{below: Julia and I hanging out with Goofy in Disneyland! He was such a gentleman ;)}

That pretty much sums up some of my favorite parts of the trip, but we also did a lot of other fun things! :) Julia and I had a blast together. I felt that somehow her and I became closer friends throughout the trip, and I think thats because both her and I are falling more in love with Jesus. It's a funny thing, isn't it? The closer we get to the creator of the universe, the better the relationships are that we have with other people that are centered around Christ. 

Also, your not going to believe this one! One of my favorite bloggers, Katie from Hope Engaged, and I were able to meet in real life! It was CRAZY and a total God moment! The Lord totally blessed us beyond belief. Heres the story: When I was traveling to California, I had randomly commented on one of Katie's pictures on Facebook, telling her that I would love to make candles with her sometime (she had posted a picture about how she wanted to make soy candles) and that I also wished that her and I lived closer so that we could do so. Katie commented back, and mentioned how she wished the same thing and ALSO how she saw that I was on my way to Disneyland/California through one of the pictures on my Facebook page. She asked if I was free to meet up, and I told her yes! At first, she didn't think she would be able to, but then it ended up working out! I was so thankful. Here's a picture from our adventure together:

Katie and I had a blast hanging out for about an hour, just talking about life. I told her a bit about my testimony and how Jesus changed my life, and she told me about her family and also more about how her and Kevin met. It's crazy how natural everything felt with Katie, and also how it feels like her and I have been friends for awhile yet that was my first time meeting her in person. God works in BIG ways my friends, through any source! I am amazed to see the way that God is using technology to His advantage to bring His followers together. Wow. It still doesn't seem real! I really hope that I get to see Katie again sometime soon, she is such a light for Jesus and one of the sweetest people ever. Love that beautiful lady!

Anyways, I'm off to run some errands. I hope you all are doing great, and seeking Jesus above everything else. He is SO SO good! Let us not forget how special it is that we have the opportunity to have a relationship with God Himself!


I love you guys!


Sunday, February 9, 2014

Authority over the enemy

Hi blog friends! How are the each of you doing? This weekend has been a crazy weekend. We had a GIGANTIC snow storm here in town, and it was so bad that they cancelled last Thursday and Friday of school. I bet my students were happy when class was cancelled on Friday! haha. Also, the snow isn't even gone yet. It's still so bad outside that they cancelled church this morning, for everyones safety. So this morning I had my own little church service with just Jesus and I, in my bed with my comfy blankets.
Jesus and I talked about a lot this morning. I poured my heart out to Him, as lately I just have felt robbed of my intimacy with Him. The closer I get to Jesus, the more spiritual attack I notice from the enemy. The enemy hates my intimate relationship with Christ, so I'm not surprised this is happening. Thankfully we have power in the name of Jesus to call out the enemy. We have AUTHORITY over Him. 

"Look, I have given you authority over all the power of the enemy, and you can walk among snakes and scorpions and crush them. Nothing will injure you." 
Luke 10:19

I'll be honest with you, I haven't felt that kind of authority lately. I feel like I have been letting Satan have way more power of me than he deserves. I feel Jesus revealing this truth to me, and also that He desperately wants to reclaim His territory back over my life. I am so thankful that God is faithful to do this in my life. No matter how far we stray away from the Lord, He is faithful to restore and strengthen us once again, as long as we continue to live our lives for Him and rely on Him completely. 
Today, I have a lot to do. I have an assignment I need to complete for my graduate class, and it's making me kind of nervous. In my devotional this morning I read about in Luke 10: 38-41 where it talks about Mary and Martha, and how Martha comes to God with a heart full of lists, and Mary comes to God with a listening heart. Man, did I feel convinced as I read this passage this morning. Lately, I have been coming to God only with a list of things that I need to get done. Instead, I need to be more like Mary, and simple sit at the Lord's feet and give Him the chance to care for me. I need to simply just tell the Lord what is on my mind and what is bothering me. 
"But the Lord said to her, "My dear Martha, you are worried and upset over all these details! There is only one thing worth being concerned about. Mary has discovered it, and it will not be taken away from her." 
Luke 10:41
Do you ever feel more like Martha than Mary? How can you work on coming to God with more of a listening heart instead of a "listing" heart? Also, do you realize how much authority we have in the name of Jesus? Call out Satan on all of his evil lies! We are OVERCOMERS! 
I love you guys!
Love always, Jess

Friday, February 7, 2014

F A I T H over fear

Do you ever feel like fear consumes you? Like, whatever your going through, you may never reach that point where you overcome it? That's how I have felt lately. Lately, I've been having an issue with falling to sleep. Either it takes forever for me to fall asleep, or I have to take a sleeping pill. It's been driving me crazy. Last night, I hardly slept at all. It's been pretty rough. I've prayed about it, cried about it, freaked out about it, and more. 

I know partially the reason behind my lack of sleep is a spiritual attack. Another big reason is that I am in grad school and teaching two public speaking classes, which both put a lot of pressure on me. Satan uses whatever I am worried about that day or am over thinking about as bate to get me to worry even more and not fall asleep. 

 I googled "Bible verses about fear" and so many different encouraging verses came up. It's crazy how powerful the word of God is.
Even though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil, for you are with me; your rod and your staff, they comfort me
Psalm 23:4

I also love this one, which says: 

In peace I will lie down and sleep,
    for you alone, O Lord, will keep me safe.
Psalm 4:8

What fears are you tackling lately in your walk with God? Remember, we are conquerors in Christ! It may not always be easy, but God promises to give us strength to get through it all if we simply just trust in Him. Funny that when we turn our fears to God's word and what He says about them, they fade away. He is good my friends, and He loves us oh so much. 

I love you guys! 

Love always, Jess