True Success

Worthy Thought: True Success is ready and waiting for you.

What a Promise!

We are doing a Psalm and Proverb Daily Challenge with some of our Divine Connections ladies.

This was one of my favorites and worthy of sharing. True Success is ready and waiting for us when we find Christ.

~ XXOO Michelle

Basic Training 

In the military, you begin by going through Basic Training. Basic skills are taught such as physical fitness, marching, marksmanship, rifle maintenance, and war maneuvers.  

Perhaps the greatest objective of Basic Training is to teach young recruits to fear the commands of the drill sergeant more than any other thing.  
Swift and severe punishment is given to those who would dare disobey his orders.  


This aspect of training is critical to the success of the military’s mission, for war involves great fear and danger, and if the soldier gives in to fear and disobeys an order, he threatens not only his life but the lives of countless others.

In the spiritual life, there is a corresponding objective. As we begin our journeys with The Lord, he trains us diligently to heed his words, for disobedience to his words and inner voice will result in the endangerment of everyone that is associated with us.  

It is written, “Watch your lives and doctrines carefully, for if you do so, you will save not only yourself, but everyone that hears you”.  

Our lives and doctrines must line up with the precepts of the Lord, or many others will be led astray from the devotion to Christ and the faithfulness to his words that are critical to the success of the mission of the church.

The objective of military training is to produce a military that operates as a single unit and can accomplish great objectives. The objective of spiritual disciplines is to create a church that can move and pray as one, a church that hears and responds obediently to The Master’s voice, a church that lives and breathes to bring glory to the Father and salvation to men.  

This is no small undertaking and must not be taken lightly, for Our Father is un-distractibly devoted to this objective.  

He will not be denied.  
No matter how long it takes, his will will be done; the church will be disciplined and perfected to live and move as one.  

It is to our advantage that we get onboard early and enthusiastically, for then we will avoid many un-necessary growing pains.

~ Brad Heilhecker 

Restoration Stories- Jaydee Graham 


My story may be much different than others you may hear. It’s the kind that seems painful, raw, jaded, but disastrously radically beautiful and that is exactly what it is, beautiful. I think at times what makes me extraordinary is that I consider myself a lioness and am currently combining my warrior traits with the beauty of love and vulnerability and my truth. Quite the combo, if I must say, but a beautiful one at that.

I carry warrior qualities, I’m a fighter for what I’m passionate about, I chase after my dreams to succeed and better my family’s lives but I also am a work of art, a rare find, and a source of beauty through a jaded and difficult journey. 

This isn’t to boast it’s to state that even those with hard times, difficult pasts, who have failed numerous times and had to repeatedly be humbled and get back up…that those people are beautiful also and capable of dreaming, doing, and succeeding. YES!!!

I also like to say that once I found my voice in the midst of being silenced and the midst of finding my true and authentic self that I now have the power and capability to ROAR my truth and to set myself free from the “bondage” that I have been entangled in.

The one thing I would love to tell, especially women, is that “You are worthy”. 
In times society wants to make us seem mediocre, small, microscopic and that our views, stories, our voices don’t matter. 

Well, I’m telling you that you can achieve your dreams, you can accomplish your goals, you most certainly have a voice and I encourage you to “roar” as a lioness and be the women that you are intended to be whether the world sees it as capable or not.
 

· Fight for your life, your dreams, and your soul, the love for yourself, your families safety and your voice.

 

· Love yourself

 

· Take each day at a time

 

· Don’t judge your journey amongst others

 

– dont rush your healing

 

· Offer yourself abundant amounts of grace when you do fall

 

· Find those who will support you back up

 

· keep going!

 

When I was young I began to explore the world and found myself on my different paths. At a young age I began to explore the world of sex, drugs and alcohol. I was not aware how this could deeply affect my life, my view of self, my view of others, my safety as well as my success as a woman in this world.

In high school I became very enraged and angered by my inability to be able to explore the world as I chose. I was uninterested in school and began falling behind, at one point having a .66 in high school and didn’t even think graduating with my high school degree would be possible nor did I desire it.

I was uneducated, wasn’t aware of what I was getting myself into and didn’t have the resources that were crucially important for me to succeed or protect myself.

I, like many, did not have any experience in relationships, drug or alcohol abuse or sexual encounters, ultimately this lack of educational resources prohibited me from making knowledgeable and educated decisions or be fully aware of what decisions I was making and how it was ultimately killing me.

The year of my enlightening journey was not easy; I found myself in a residential care facility for troubled teens for 7 and half months of my life with the intent to form respect, self-direction, counseling and ultimately support.
This time I was pulled from my current high school suddenly and found myself living in a home of 13 teen girls and went from being able to speak to anyone the way I chose, to having to ask for permission to even speak, eat, go up or down the stairs, in or out of rooms and in and out of the house.

I found support among women who were older than me. They heard my cry and desire to explore this world and ultimately understood who I was. I found support among the women who I lived with and shared difficult moments with, who were living in the same world of chaos, frustration and pain as I was. I began to see that I was not the only one struggling tremendously through my teen years.

Upon completing the program, I moved home and chose to shake these restrictions and feel free again. This turned into drug and alcohol abuse, consistent unhealthy relationships and ultimately choosing sleeping on friend’s beds and couches due to running away from home. 

I found myself waking up numb, and in random homes, several pregnancy scares and continual drug use.
Still, within my soul I knew there was more. I knew I was worth more. I knew my life meant more and that one day I would be able to find it.
 

I began to research how to enroll myself into school and had a friend drop me off at a University for yet another chapter of my life. Unfortunately, at this school my drug and alcohol use continued because it was much easier to obtain. I began to lose sight of the course of life I truly knew I needed to be on.
After one semester I was already back on academic probation, struggling to find financial assistance to stay in school and was once again losing hope. I was living a life of numbness. I worked hard but was so caught up on seeking social acceptance that I did not realize where my life was heading.  
I stayed numb.

At this university, I sought out the party scene and began to experiment sexually and dive into pill usage on a whole new level.
In a sense I was walking around with my eyes closed just trying to get by and manage life, thinking at times I had everything I had ever wanted, but so incredibly lost at the same time.
One evening, I found myself on my bathroom floor with a positive pregnancy test in my hand.
I remember leaving the University hospital, alone, on a very rainy day and getting in my car, after being told once again that I was pregnant and close to 6 weeks along.
Thinking….“Wait, I am only 20, not even close to being done with school, I am lost, completely unhappy and I am now growing a human being in my belly, when I can barely care for myself.”

For one second within the confines of my car I felt instant peace.

This was my day of awakening.

A child was growing in my belly and I had to radically change my life….


On this day I chose to better my life, not for me but for this soul that was begging me to be succeed, to be healthy, to be a powerful woman, an example, a mother, and for this,

I owe my son…my life.

At this point my mind, heart, and soul were focused on bettering our lives. My life became about becoming self-sufficient, growing together, and pressing forward to achieve my goals and dreams so that my son could have an example and a beautiful life

It is never too late to be what you might have been. – George Elliot

I can tell you right now, it is NEVER too late to become more, to become better, to be who you were intended to be.  

We made our way back home, to be closer to family. We had been and were in a very toxic environment but I was able to find support and guidance and began to dive into studies. After a strenuous and difficult journey, I came to a realization; I had been silenced.

I had been an independent woman, strong willed, and felt no shame in declaring who I was or what I thought and slowly I found myself silenced, unheard and ultimately speechless.



One evening, I was on my knees weeping by my bedside begging for the lord to give me a sign and give me the power and voice to step away, for good, because I honestly couldn’t do it on my own. 
That night I had a very raw and real dream about my own life, but it was not happy, nor did it end well.

The next morning, I awoke from my own nightmare. I walked away from abuse and never went back. 

I had tremendous support in my mother, who had seen me weep in pain for years. We both began weeping, in relief.

I found my voice and knew that I wanted to be a survivor, not another statistic and that I wanted to help others overcome and find their voice as well.

My real friends came to my side and I was close to completing my bachelor’s Degree.

On Mother’s Day, with my son in the stands, I graduated with honors, Magnu Cum Laude and walked straight into my graduate degree, a one-year advanced program for obtaining my Masters in Science of Social Work.

I have walked with my classmates again, after a long year in the Master’s program and obtained my MSSW the summer of 2016.

I never imagined the life I have today…with not one, but two diplomas.

Life has radically changed and I have been incredibly blessed.

We have been so incredibly blessed with such love and support in our journey.

I would have not made it this far without the support of my incredible mother, who is our biggest fan, The Family Scholar House program, my peers and those in my cohort, teachers who supported and empowered me, case workers, advocates on our behalf, my sisters and even bystanders, who without knowing, empowered my weak spirit.

I have been empowered by women within the community who have challenged me to speak out and share my story. They have helped me see my real beauty and my inner-warrior and to use my voice. They have also blessed me with the opportunity to speak my truth to others as an outlet and support to those who may be going through or who are healing from the same things.

Most important, I would not be here without my son, who has given me my passion, my drive and has instilled in me the real meaning of love within my heart. He is my heart outside my body and the reason I found the drive to strive to be the woman I am today.

I am now asking you to listen, to empower and to advocate for those who are uneducated in regards to violence and their harmful current situations whether it be physical, emotional, verbal, sexual or mental abuse, as well as those who you are witness to violence in an extent that has drastically changed their lives. Many people have been silenced and are living in silence, so please offer them the opportunity to be heard and to find their voice once again. 

Choose to be that one person who makes a personal impact on another’s life that empowers them to be the person they were intended to be….so at this time please stand and face forward if you are able to commit to this…you are making a commitment to assist in diminishing the cycle of violence within this community, empowering those who have difficulty seeing any strengths within them, who have spent many nights and days weeping, bruised, naked, alone and emotional drained, who have spent days or even years in silence, who have difficult carrying for their children due to the abuse they are undergoing amongst the bills they are unable to pay, you are giving them an opportunity to be heard, to hear themselves, and to help them find safety and hope, you are allowing them to see support and to feel the presence of someone who sees them as more than just a statistic but yet giving them an opportunity to grow, flourish and be the beautiful soul that they have been trying so hard to be…. and recognize that you are not alone and others will be at the same time choosing to say no to violence and taking a stand in allowing survivors voices to be heard.  

You are WORTHY. 

Your journey is worthy. 

Your freedom is Worthy. 

Your Voice is Worthy.

My passion is to empower others by using my journey and my voice and so I began The Soul Grind, which is a place of self-exploration, radical self-love, soul searching, and some powerful empowerment! 

A community where your voice is heard and your soul can grow and flourish in the company of some beautiful other humans on the same journey. 

The Soul Grind pours love on wounds and allows you to be heard and also it emphasizes the importance of combining all of that with a big cup of coffee!

Join us! Let’s hear your ROAR.

~ Jaydee Graham 

Connect with Soul Grind- 

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Instagram: thesoulgrind

Crown Your Efforts With Success


In everything you do, put God first, and He will direct you and crown your efforts with success.~ Proverbs 3:6 

I have seen this verse many times. It was one of my verses from my dreams last night and I almost skimmed right over the word and lesson God was trying to convey to me.  

God has been speaking to me for almost a year that I should be intentionally focusing and living Christ first- Christ center; In everything! 

It is not always easy living this way because the world pulls and tugs at us to distract us.  

Being in my second fast in May and removing many distractions and intentionally trying to keep Christ first and practice uncomfortable obedience,was hard.  

Here are some things I learned….

 

God will ask you to change your thinking, clear out warped perceptions, bring you out of your comfort zone, have you say no to some good things to make room for greater things.

He will have you learn to wait, trust, cling to Him. He will ask us to be bolder and braver and not sugar coat or withhold back anything because of fear. 

 He will ask us to remove, decline, and obey him in some pretty hard things while he is helping us get rid of our fleshly behaviors.  We won’t always understand what He reveals, but that is where Trust and Faith are built. 

It is such a different way to live when we stop focusing on the world and our flesh and filter everything by – is it Christ honoring? Is Christ in the center of this? Is Christ first place?  Am I being Obedient? 
When we obey Christ in everything-what God views as a success- may not be what others see. 
So through this verse God showed me:

What the world may view as success or even what I can view as success, is sometimes the exact opposite of what God views as success
The image today is the one of the beauty queen blunder where Steve Harvey announced in error the wrong winner and on a very public stage the crown was removed from one and placed on the real winner.  

Talk about Awkward! 

I actually saw the interview with the host Steve Harvey and the actual winner. It was really sad how the public reacted so ugly to a simple human error. People were calling for boycotts, some got death threats, the real winner couldn’t enjoy her success because of the threats of angry people and had to go into hiding.  

What could have been a life lesson for many- was missed in all the anger and resentments -so they don’t ever see the lesson.  
So it is with us, We can miss many life lessons because of anger, judgement, offense,negative influences, resentments, criticisms and fear.  

Those things have a way of clouding our views.  We won’t be able to see or hear clearly when those things get in the way. 

So always put God first! 
Do what is right.  Do what God says to do.  Don’t let the world change you- let the Word change you. 

If we keep God first and center, He will direct us and crown our efforts with success, even if the world doesn’t see the success in the situation.  
       ~XXOO Michelle Bollom 

13 Destructive Mindsets That Will Stifle Your Growth in 2016

  

This is a great list and a great blog to check out!  I hope you are off to a wonderful start in 2016.   XXOO Michelle Bollom
Be sure to give Dream Big Dream Often a follow! 

I want you to be determined and resolute in your mind that 2016 is going to be your Year of Growth.  I want you to visualize in your mind the goals you want to achieve.  I want you to feel the success.   I want you to feel the emotion of being scared.  I want […]

http://dreambigdreamoften.co/2016/01/06/13-destructive-mindsets-that-will-keep-you-from-growing/

Reblog Meet & Greet

  

Thank You Dream Big Dream Often! 

Please check it out and support your fellow bloggers.  XXOO Michelle Bollom 

Christmas Meet and Greet 12/25It’s the Meet and Greet Christmas edition at Dream Big!! Ok so here are the rules: Leave a link to your page or post in the comments of this post. Reblog this post.  It helps you, it helps me, it helps everyone!  So don’t be selfish, hit the reblog button. Edit your reblog post […]
http://dreambigdreamoften.co/2015/12/26/christmas-meet-and-greet-1225/

It’s All His Stage 

  
Spent today in a conversation

In the mirror face to face with

somebody less than perfect

I wouldn’t choose me first if

I was looking for a champion

In fact I’d understand if

You picked everyone before me

But that’s just not my story….



I may not have chosen me, but I am so glad God did! He thinks I am perfectly imperfect. 



I am a natural encourager. As far back as I can remember I have loved to encourage people and help them recognize their own awesomeness. I am a great cheerleader just without all the backflips and high toe jumps. 
Since coming to Christ and knowing that He definitely is all about Restoration, and the transformation He did in my own life, I love to share God’s awesomeness with others too.

True to who You are

You saw my heart

and made

Something out of nothing



I am not a nobody, I am just somebody that simply said yes to God. 


I’m not living for applause

I’m already so adored

It’s all His stage

He knows my name oh, oh,

He knows my name oh, oh



“It’s all His stage” 

and thankfully it is big enough for us all!   



I don’t live for the applause or count likes or followers. When God downloaded Restored Ministries to me in February 2014, I said,

Lord if just one person is encouraged or inspired and comes to know You deeper, I am good. I told God that I wanted to be obedient to what He asked me to do and not run ahead or try to force things on my own. I want to follow His flow.  



Almost 2 years later, God is still faithful. He is still blowing my mind with Divine Encounters, and appointments and connections. 
Each day God brings so many people across my path, online and off, to pray for, encourage, inspire, serve, help, mentor and love, etc.  
He knows my name, and my heart, and what He has called me to… I don’t have to force others to understand or support it.



Of course it is important to advertise, don’t get me wrong, we should share and ask others to like what we are doing, but ultimately I trust God to bring who He needs to bring in His perfect timing. I don’t need my name in lights, I am already famous in my Father’s eyes. 

                 ~XXOO Michelle Bollom 

He Knows My Name – FRANCESCA BATTISTELLI 
LYRICS:
Spent today in a conversation

In the mirror face to face with

somebody less than perfect

I wouldn’t choose me first if

I was looking for a champion

In fact I’d understand if

You picked everyone before me

But that’s just not my story

True to who You are

You saw my heart

and made

Something out of nothing
[Chorus:]

I don’t need my name in lights

I’m famous in my Father’s eyes

Make no mistake

He knows my name

I’m not living for applause

I’m already so adored

It’s all His stage

He knows my name oh, oh,

He knows my name oh, oh
I’m not meant to just stay quiet

I’m meant to be a lion

I’ll roar beyond a song

With every moment that I’ve got

True to who You are

You saw my heart

and made

Something out of nothing
[Chorus]
He calls me chosen, free forgiven, wanted, child of the King,

His forever, held in treasure…

I am loved
I don’t need my name in lights…

I’m famous in my Father’s eyes…
[Chorus]

May The Force Be With You 



 

Thanks to Amy Tippins for sharing her story with us from Her personal blog

  

 1 John 4:18

There is no fear in love. But perfect love drives out fear, because fear has to do with punishment. The one who fears is not made perfect in love.

Where fear resides God cannot…unless you invite Abba to take away the fear. 

 For the past 2 years I have lived in fear. Fear that I would never be financially stable enough to become a parent. Fear of my business not being successful enough to support my family. I fear that I will run out of the mental bandwidth to handle a business and a child. I fear I will never be chosen by a birth mom. Yes, I have strong fears and sometimes they drive me to tears.

What I can attest to is that when I turn my fear over to God and asked for him to calm my heart, He always seems to come through in a way that is so much greater than I dreamed.

Society beats fear into our subconscious every step of the way in life. Growing up, it was preached to me that “certain types of girl” blessing from God never include “happily ever after” or a family. Guess what, THIS “certain type of girl” who goes against what is accepted as a “good Christian girl” found a love that accepts me in all of my faults and wonderful characteristics. I held out for what I am worthy of. I pushed forward and trusted in God despite my fear.

Fear is darkness. Think of one of the most classic movies, Star Wars, Luke lost his ability to use The Force when he allowed fear to entire his mind. When he feared his father then darkness (and sin) entered his mind and heart. When our hearts and mind fill with fear, then our actions become selfish, divisive and counter-productive to building love in our lives. To be fair, fear is as old as sin….it is the source of all sin. I lost the inability to fight fear at birth and so did you.

Most days, I have to say “This one isn’t under my control”. That scares me, but it is ok because I am not in control of this world. Somehow, when I whisper those words and ask God to fill my heart with faith then he fills my heart with peace. Most importantly, I know he won’t fail me when I invited him into my place of fear.

Fear is limits

God provided my perfect donor, a man who loves me so much that some days I shake my head at my worthiness of him, and God saved my house from going onto the auction block over a year ago. When I took the path of gratitude in my business, he tripled our business in less than 2 weeks. Yep, I think once I learned to say “Oh, I so do not have this handled” and say it with peace in my heart then he handled everything far beyond what I thought was possible.

My Abba (Father) covers my fear with His love, He is bringing my child home, and he has been creating a business that will is covering our financial needs. Yes, I don’t need to live in fear, BUT I am only human. So, He will be patient with me in the meantime and whisper into my ear “I know the plans I have for you”.  ~Amy Tippins 

The Key To Success

IMG_0500.JPG

When you’re busy pleasing God you will have no room to please people.
Pleasing people for fear of upsetting them is not truly loving them. Being a people pleaser allows you to operate in a false, non-genuine state. You walk on eggshells, you feel guilty for their sadness and obligated for their happiness. It is exhausting! People can be addicted to the response they get from other people trying to agree, encourage and build them up. It is a draining never-ending cycle. It takes up valuable energy and time and prevents you from doing what God wants you to do.

Jesus did not say that we have to coddle and please people; He said to Love people.

The best way to really love someone is to be honest with them and set boundaries. You don’t have to buy into their drama.

Those that matter will appreciate your honesty, respect the boundaries, be willing to grow, and change. Those that don’t – well, it just may be time for the ole “Gift of Goodbye!”

Not everyone is going where God is calling you.

Not everyone is beneficial to our growth. Sometimes the sucker branches have to be pruned to allow for new growth and better fruit to develop.

It is time for us to stop being distracted by those “sucker branch” people, find our words, set boundaries, and stop compromising our true self by trying to please people.

Let us get busy doing and being all God wants us to be! ~XXOO Michelle Bollom

Live your God ordained life, not just a counterfeit version to keep people happy. ~ Joyce Meyer

So that you may live a life worthy of the Lord and please Him in every way: bearing fruit in every good work, growing in the knowledge of God,~ Colossians 1:10 NIV

For we speak as messengers approved by God to be entrusted with the Good News. Our purpose is to please God, not people. He alone examines the motives of our hearts.~ 1 Thessalonians 2:4 NLT

“I am the true vine, and my Father is the gardener. He cuts off every branch in me that bears no fruit, while every branch that does bear fruit he prunes so that it will be even more fruitful. ~ John 15:1-2 NIV

A Dangerous Trap

 

Fearing people is a dangerous trap, but trusting the LORD means safety. ~ Proverbs 29:25

For God has not given us a spirit of fear and timidity, but of power, love, and self-discipline. ~2 Timothy 1:7

 

Fear n. noun 1. A feeling of agitation and anxiety caused by the presence or imminence of danger. 2. A state or condition marked by this feeling. Living in fear. 3. A feeling of disquiet or apprehension. a fear of looking foolish. V. verb 1. To be afraid or frightened of. 2. To be uneasy or apprehensive about. Feared the test results. 3. To be in awe of; revere.

WOW! That first verse really gets me. I love the straight forwardness and simplicity of it. What I love even more is how God used that verse to speak to me in some areas where I was caught in that trap of fearing man. I would not consider myself fearful. My family and I used to love the show Fear Factor. We used to laugh and say we could win as long as we did not have to eat the cockroaches. I also had people call me fearless and brave because I rapped in front of almost 30,000 people with Grammy Winner Mandisa. 

(You can view video proof on About Page at my website http://www.restoredministries.org)

I really felt no fear doing that. I am however, a recovering Approval Addict.  I spent a lot of my life performing to gain approval and did not speak up for myself or rock the boat and pretty much operated in a false self; most of my early life.

The characteristics of a False Self person are: limited ability for love/ intimacy, Needs to be in control, lives in illusions, not in reality. Birthed in fear; very insecure, unable to express needs, and prone to addictions and compulsions. Yep, that described me well. It wasn’t until my life was out of control and I finally surrendered to God and allowed God, The Holy Spirit and His word to transform my life did my True Self began to emerge.

True Self, Characteristics are: Great capacity for love/intimacy Does not need to be in control, gives other people freedom, rooted in God’s truth, identity is in God; trusts in God, lives according to personal values/beliefs and is peaceful. I am pretty much all of those True Self characteristics now thanks to God and Recovery; but I still honestly sometimes have a problem trusting God fully, which when you don’t trust God, you essentially are living in Fear. I didn’t feel fearful about situations or life in general, but God specifically wanted to show me some lessons on Fear of Man and that type of Fear, what I thought was a thing of my past; was indeed still keeping me trapped. He used two situations in the last year to bring that lesson home.

The first lesson He taught me on Fear of Man was on tithing. I have prided myself in being a cheerful giver and for almost 10 years I have followed the Biblical rule of at least 10% is given back to God in your tithe each month. I would increase the amount from time to time so I knew I did not just give 10%. Then God started showing me that I was giving out of pride. Really, God? Pride? God we can never give enough back to you… Really? God you would never asks us to adjust our giving, only to keep increasing it, Right? …Wrong!  God was asking me to review my budget and to lower the amount of my giving so that I could save for a better safeguard for my family in case of emergencies or repairs. I really thought that could not be God speaking or asking anyone to ever lessen their amount of giving so I shared this with my close friend, one of my Iron Sharpens Iron girlies that God likes to use us with each other to help us get some big God Lessons. As we talked about it, I got some clarification, and when I took it to the Lord, I got an even bigger clarification. I looked at our monthly budget and found that I was giving 18.5 % each month. I was not putting anything back for my families safeguarding. The bible instructs us to give 10% and I practice that with my children also. Some think it is harsh to make your child give 10% of all pet sitting, Birthday, or Christmas money they earn back to God, but I know in the 4 years my children have done it, that it has made for much better kids, I just wish I would have started earlier in my life and in theirs. They don’t always have to give to our church in the offering, sometimes they choose a charity, or they like to bless strangers. I think God loves all ways we give back to Him and He honors cheerful giving. So I took this knowledge I had uncovered to my husband. I told Him that this was what God was speaking to me about. He thought it should be a simple decision to lower that amount to ensure that we are paying ourselves also so that we can have a safeguard in case of emergencies and to simply obey God. I wish I could say that I did obey my husband and even God right away, but, No, I dragged my feet and wrestled with God over this decision for six more months because I was fearful our church and pastors would look at us differently if we lowered our tithes. God made it unbearable for me until I finally wanted to Obey God more than be trapped by my Fear of Man. God has blessed that decision so much and I am so happy to have God decide what He would have us give and not what I thought I should because of my pride.

When I thought I had no more problems with fear, the Holy Spirit began to speak to my heart and told me that fear was indeed crippling me. The fear of man, the fear of their reactions, fear of opinions, all were hindering me from stepping into God’s full plans for me. God was asking me to take some great big steps for Him. I was so excited, but not everybody was as excited, encouraging, or happy for me. Many did not understand. Some had strong opinions, some began to distance themselves from me, and it started a wave of unfriending when I started posting on social media what I was doing for God. I wasn’t so much bothered over the unfriending’s and unfollows as I was that out of almost 1000 friends, less than 100 had actually supported me by “liking” my new Ministry Page.

(Yes, Liking a page is showing support for someone in the Social Media world & Yes I break the so called experts rules and solicit likes for my page.  How else can it grow and reach people?)

Well, that nasty fear of man, as God’s word says, is a trap! I found myself fearful of posting what I felt God would have me post, or write what I felt He wanted me to write, I was unsure of what I should do, so most days I did nothing. I had committed to God months before that if He wanted me to step out and trust Him, I will do it. I wanted to be totally obedient to Him, no matter what that looked like. So now after I had declared that and stepped out for God, I was bound by this trap of fear of people’s opinions, counting Likes, unfriending’s, unfollowing’s, comments, lack of comments etc…? I was allowing the enemy to plague me with fear. I had stopped being a warrior for God and became a worrier.  I want to be a warrior, not a worrier.  Was I going to embrace each step that God would give me on this journey and not get bound to the vicious trap of comparison and competing? Guessing and second guessing God? I spent many days and nights taking it all to God. This is what I felt God spoke to me about this 2nd Fear of Man lesson.

The world would be much better off if we would collaborate more and compete less.

God’s garden is big enough for us all. We need each other and God designed us to work together. We all have different gifting’s and abilities and strengths that are needed to advance His Kingdom and share Christ with this dark world. Some people just won’t support you, in life or with Likes. Keep Asking, Keep Seeking, And Keep Knocking. Don’t let the voices in your head and the voices of the crowds of naysayers discourage you to not fully step out for God.Don’t let the fear of people’s reactions keep you from taking action. Trust God. Obey God in the small things and everything. Keep going even when you don’t understand.  Your success is not defined by Likes & Followers, It is defined by God. 

 

I so want my hearts cry to the Lord to reflect what the song Oceans by Hillsong United, says.

 

You call me out upon the waters… The great unknown where feet may fail… And there I find You in the mystery …In oceans deep My faith will stand …Your grace abounds in deepest waters… Your sovereign hand Will be my guide ..Where feet may fail and fear surrounds me …You’ve never failed and You won’t start now ,,So I will call upon Your name And keep my eyes above the waves ..When oceans rise My soul will rest in Your embrace …For I am Yours and You are mine …Spirit lead me where my trust is without borders …Let me walk upon the waters …Wherever You would call me… Take me deeper than my feet could ever wander And my faith will be made stronger …In the presence of my Savior

 

I want to trust God, to rest in His embrace, to answer His call out upon the unknown waters. Where His promises to never leave me or fail me are so believable that I will trust without borders. My faith will be made stronger when I stay in the presence of my Savior.

I want to Trust God so much that there is never any room for Fear.

Here are some amazing affirmations that I choose to keep reminding myself of when I start to let the doubts of others discourage me.

It is not the crowd that calls you but God that calls you. And when you get to heaven you’re not going to have to answer for the crowds you’re only going to have to answer for yourself. Don’t get so hung up on the fear of what people will think that you let it paralyze and keep you from your potential and purpose for the Lord. Not everyone will understand why or how God calls you. It is ok. You don’t have to justify what God has called you to for anyone. You only need to worry about an audience of ONE! The Heavenly Father! If He called you, He will carry you through.

I leave you with this great quote.

Fear of the unknown is a dream killer. It causes people to freeze in time and one day they will wake up and realize that their opportunities have been seized by someone who was willing to look fear in the face and take the leap of faith. ~ Adonis Lenzy                                                                                                                                     

  I hope you are inspired to look fear in the face and take that leap of faith. Don’t let Fear be a dream killer anymore; remember you are fearless in Christ. Step out Big! Be Brave! XXOO ~Michelle Bollom

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