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    Hoping in a Help That Never Came

    My sister and I were cruising along on the highway, not a care in the world, until we heard a disastrous sound from the back of the car. Later, on the shoulder of a road in the middle of small-town Illinois, we discovered the reason for the disturbing sound. A blown-out tire. My sister and I didn’t know what to do, at first. We were on our way to Missouri for a spring break getaway, still eight hours away from our destination, and this was the last thing we expected. Now we were stuck, on the side of the highway, unable to escape or continue on, in desperate need of…

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    Be Who You Are — Free

    Picture this: The scene is a musty old prison, and in one cell sit two inmates. They have committed different crimes but are still sentenced to the same punishment – the death penalty. There is no hope for someone to bail them out; instead, the captives sit in their warranted guilt. As they await the day that death will come, the torment of confinement eats away at them. Bereft of salvation, all that is left to linger is inevitable fear and psychological torment. The four peeled walls around the convicts are all they know. Incarceration is the new normal, hammered into their corrupt minds. One day, as the two inmates…

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    To Grow Again

    In reflecting on the past year, I have come to a realization. Man, oh, man. I was in a forest fire. Last year was the most difficult time I had ever had to endure. The year was complete with broken relationships, a death in the family, countless health issues, financial burdens, and traumatic experiences galore. All in all, the spiritual warfare was evident and tangible. I say all this not to evoke pity or sorrow from you, but to truly illustrate how the year, in a vague sense, was an inferno of trials. By giving a brief rundown of these things, I guess I am painting fire in a bad…

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    “He Won’t Give You More Than You Can Handle,” and Other Lies I Have Believed

    Acts 10:9 About noon the following day as they were on their journey and approaching the city, Peter went up on the roof to pray.   The struggle continues. The season in life that I find myself in is not a pleasant one. I have spent much of my time with God lamenting, mourning, or simply crying over the brokenness of this world and the fact that I must suffer through the effects of it. In all honesty, it seems like more than I can bear. The thing is, I had always convinced myself that God would never pile on more than I was capable of handling. In fact, other people…

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    Faking Until Breaking: The Beauty of a Broken Soul

      Recently, I suffered a loss. Yes, I suffered. My grandfather ultimately was the “victim” of death, per se, but death takes many more hostage if grief is not dealt with in a healthy manner. I was held captive by this trauma that so quickly seemed to plague my life. After sitting by my grandfather as he took his last breath, I was left feeling all sorts of emotions that I could not make sense of –selfishness, sadness, anger, confusion. My own mind seemed foreign, at times. Most of all, though, I felt the need to fake fine. There are many lies and preconceived falsehoods about emotional weakness. Some may…

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    A Fleeting Wreck

    I was just cruising down the highway, nearing closer to the exit that led to home. I sat back, relaxed in my silver sedan, as I began to merge into the right lane mindlessly, as I had done countless times before. It seemed that this lane-change would be no different from past times but, oh, how wrong I would be in a matter of seconds. Mid-merge, compromised in two adjacent lanes, my car coasted at a comfortable sixty miles-per-hour. And just like that, a truck appeared in my peripheral vision. It was inches away from me; most would say too close for comfort. I knew at that moment, it was…

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    God’s Plan is Perseverance, Not Escape

      Over the past few weeks, I have been tested. A lot of my quiet times have consisted of journaling out how I was feeling because, honestly, I couldn’t focus on much else. Today, in fact, I was writing yet again, and while I reread my raw emotions scribbled on the page, I realized I had to combat these negative feelings with scripture. I was done wallowing in disappointment and discontentment. Strangely enough, Jeremiah 29:11 had really stuck out to me during my times of struggle this month, but I had never read it completely in context. I had seen it as a comforting scripture, but not for the reasons…

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    Deflecting Death- The Breastplate of Righteousness

    Continuing on with the Armor of God, the next piece of the armor is the Breastplate of Righteousness. …with the breastplate of righteousness in place…  Obviously, the breastplate was designed to protect the vital organs. The heart and lungs were guarded by this piece of armor; without the breastplate, a soldier would unquestionably meet their demise. With the utilization of a breastplate, attacks to the main sources of life would become ineffective and futile. The blows of the enemy would bounce back. The breastplate would deflect it, rendering the weapons and attempts of the opposing side virtually useless. Without fitting ourselves with the breastplate, we leave ourselves susceptible to certain…

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    Gird Em’- The Belt of Truth

      Happy March, everyone! I am aware that I posted nothing in February, but I assure you it was for a good cause! During the last month, I have been delving into Ephesians 6, studying more in depth the individual parts to the Armor of God. Lately, I feel like the spiritual battle has been evident in my life, and reading about the Armor of God really spoke to me in that sense. This begins a series of posts all about The Armor of God, so stay tuned for the rest to follow! As a little preface before I dive right in, I feel it is necessary to keep in…

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    Distracted by the Wind

    Over the past couple of weeks, I have felt a strong inclination to study out distractions more in depth. It is something that seems so minuscule and unworthy to address at times, after all, distractions seem to be temporary and fleeting most of the time, right? The new job that demands your attention, the difficult classes that require your full concentration, a relationship that commands devotion, and just figuring out what the future may hold can cause anxiety or apprehension. All of these examples seem to take our minds to a different place, seemingly for just a short amount of time. That’s the problem though; the word “short” is a very…