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Merry Christmas

merry christmas - snowman

I wish you many celebrations of joy and that you’ll be filled with awe as you celebrate the birth of Jesus!

Praying you’ll have a fresh revelation of Jesus’ love for you!

Grace and Peace to you during this holiday season.

Merry Christmas! 

Evangeline

God's Love

You Can Rest With Confidence in God’s Love

The more I learn of the love of Jesus, specifically His love for me, I am astounded by its depth, height, width and length. I see more clearly now that His love for me covers everything. It is complete and perfect. There are no holes in His love for me, no void spaces. So if nothing is missing in God’s love for me, why am I not always confident in the victory that love has won on my behalf?

Confidence Matters

Maybe I need to look more at what He’s done instead of what I’ve done or what I need to do. I can sometimes have a l-o-n-g “to do” list to correct my circumstances. Maybe I neGod's loveed to allow Him to be in control and do the work so I can rest. Everything that He’s done is based on His love for me. Every  bit of punishment inflicted on Him before and at the cross was because He did not want me to experience it. Every bit of scourging was endured for me. Every sickness and “condition” was taken on by His body for me. He satisfied every requirement of the Law so I wouldn’t have to. He left nothing undone and did everything perfectly. What a love!

No matter the circumstances that I find myself enduring, I’m determined to choose to look to Jesus’ love for me (Hebrews 12:2). To have confidence in His love (1 John 5:14,15). And to trust His love (Psalm 91:2). I’m determined to rest in the knowledge that His love for me has done everything necessary so that I continuously live a victorious life.

What is it that gives you confidence in God’s love for YOU?

 

 

 

 

 

Images courtesy of Ponsulak and Gubgib| FreeDigitalPhotos.net

 

Thanksgiving – Thankful for What?

   Thanksgiving

It’s Thanksgiving Day here in America. It’s a time when we celebrate how God began to form a nation with very humble beginnings. It’s a time to be thankful for many blessings, especially the freedoms we enjoy here in America.

But, when you’re facing the difficult struggle of infertility, what is there to be thankful for?

It’s so easy to get caught up in all that’s going wrong, the disappointment that comes month after month, the emotional drain of it all, the possible health scares, the financial toll and the marital problems that tend to stealthily creep in. But this Thanksgiving Day, no matter where in the world you are, make a DECISION to look for the things in life you can be thankful for.

Start by remembering that God is with you. If you’ve asked Jesus into your heart, He has promised to never leave you and to always bless you with His unfailing grace. Continue to rest in knowing that God is for you and not against you (Romans 8:31). Be thankful that He has given so many examples of women who overcame infertility,   who stand as reminders of what His loving power can do in seemingly impossible situations. Be thankful that He’s also given you  promises in the Bible that relate to your fertility. Thank Him that you can count on Him to make good on those promises (Isaiah 55:11).

Even during the moments when you doubt  His ability, willingness, and timing, stand firm in being thankful that  He still loves you. Believe that He loves you unconditionally, just as much as He loves Jesus (John 17:23).

Be thankful that there is nothing too hard for God, especially infertility (Genesis 18:14)!

Focus Friday – Love in Marriage

Maintaining a successful marriage takes work under “normal” circumstances. It is especially important to work at maintaining a strong, hope-filled, and love-based marriage during the stressful circumstances added by a season of infertility.

Here are important some keys about love, as God intended it to be experienced between husband and wife. Focus on how love REALLY is and not as it’s portrayed on television, in romance novels, and online. Focus on God’s love for you and how He wants you to love your spouse.

Get more tips and encouragement in my ebook, Infertility Sucks! How to Maintain Hope in Your Marriage During Infertility.

 

Love and Marriage

 

An Adoption Story of Hope

I subscribe to a number of emailed newsletters that help me become a better author, a better business woman, and especially, a better person. I recently received one from life coach, Valorie Burton. In it, she shared exciting and encouraging news—along with her struggles of conceiving over the age of 40 and a miscarriage. This is her personal story of how her dream to become a mommy has come true. I share it, with her permission, because I think it will encourage you to not give up hope, even if adoption is is not the path to parenthood that you choose.



 Valorie’s Story:

My lifelong dream has come true. Our lives have changed dramatically and beautifully in the last month. Since marrying my husband in 2013, I’ve been a “bonus” mom to two sweet, energetic, loving little girls. And now, God has seen fit to expand our family with a beautiful baby boy we’ve been privileged to adopt!  That’s right. I’ve become a mommy.

If you’ve read my books or followed me for a while, you know this has been a dream deferred, but I have never given up on the vision I’ve sensed deep in my spirit for marriage and family.  At times, I have felt frustrated, helpless, and discouraged, but I refused to give up hope. I could not.  To give up hope would be to give up on God. As I stand in the midst of this vision of love that has unfolded, I feel led to share my lessons learned so I can encourage you to persevere towards your own vision – whatever that vision might be:   

  1. Keep hoping.
    Without hope, there is no vision. When you stop hoping, you start settling. Be relentless and focused. At times, it may even appear you are delusional to keep hoping. So what! Keep believing in your vision and make your decisions, whether about relationships, finances, career, that honor your ultimate goal.
      
  2. Don’t let disappointments become your destination.
    Separation and divorce. Navigating the tumultuous dating landscape of Atlanta. Trying to conceive over 40. Miscarrying twins. All have been my reality in the last seven years. Each could have become a bitter destination, except for this: I refused to see my disappointments as a permanent destination.  Some were devastating detours. I had to stop journeying for a while and recover. But I made a decision to be better and not bitter after each one. I made a decision not to get stuck staring at the obstacles before me, but to look up and remember the vision in my heart. That vision compelled me to keep hoping and keep moving forward.
      
  3. Be open to a path that looks different than you expected.
    It is easy to be rigid about how your dream must come together. Don’t. Be open to divine orchestration. Let go of your need to control the “how” of your vision so you can stay focused on the “why” – which leads me to this last point …
      
  4. Stay focused on the PURPOSE of your vision more than the excitement of it.
    At points, I began to doubt whether I would ever become a mother, and before that, whether I would ever find the kind of love I believe in.  A transformational message emerged from my doubt, though. I asked myself, “What if you never marry?” “What if you never have a child?” And I answered my “What if” questions. Here’s what I realized:  The world would not come to an end, so I better learn to be happy regardless of the outcome! If I didn’t get married or have children, I would live my life single without children and I would choose to have an incredible life. There are many women I greatly admire who are single without children – and happy, purposeful, loved and loving. So then, what would be the purpose of marriage and family in my life?  That is the question I needed to answer for myself.  I don’t believe that having a child is about me becoming a mom. I believe it is about having the blessed opportunity to nurture and grow a child God has seen fit to place in my care.  What an honor. It is about him, not me.  And perhaps that is the shift in thinking that shifted my life and brought us this amazing, perfect little boy for us. 


A Call to Action for you:  Don’t give up on God (Genesis 18:14). Stay connected to Him through His promises found in His Word. Hear His quiet voice within you giving you wisdom about how to proceed along your path. You can find more encouragement in A Seed of Hope: God’s Promises of Fertility.

A Seed of Hope
A Seed of Hope: God’s Promises of Fertility by Evangeline Colbert

Focus Friday – No Barrenness

Focus on this scripture throughout the day. Be comforted knowing that barrenness is not what God desires for you. God’s desire is for you to experience a fruitful, abundant life– in your body and in ALL areas of your life.  Believe it is true for you because God’s Word is Truth.  Speak this Word to yourself throughout the day.

Focus Friday- No Barrenness

March Madness 2014

March Madness 2014Have you gotten caught up in the Madness? Did you do a bracket hoping to win the $1,000,000,000 contest?

There are only 16 teams left to play for the college basketball championship so I thought I’d share this previous March Madness post with you.

 

I enjoy watching basketball games. It was especially fun to watch when my 2 sons played at the YMCA and later for their high school teams. Whenever the college basketball tournament, known as March Madness, rolls around, I get excited. At the very beginning of the 3-week tournament, I print out the bracket sheet that shows all the team match-ups. I like to use it to predict (more like guess!) who’ll be the winner of each game and the overall champion at the end. It’s fun, especially when my husband and children develop their own bracket sheet to predict winners because we can compare who made the best guesses as the tournament progresses. Of course, whatever we predict at the beginning does not have to necessarily come to pass by the end of the tournament.

This is slightly similar to how God does things. He declares the end of things from the very beginning, except of course, what He says ALWAYS comes to pass, it is not a guess. Isaiah 46:9, 10 states, “For I am God, and there is no other; I am God, and there is none like Me; declaring the end from the beginning, and from ancient times things that are not yet done, saying, ‘My counsel shall stand, And I will do all My pleasure.'”

I’m grateful we can count on God’s ability to always perform what He has promised. His words are power-filled and He has spoken so that we can experience his best. His faithfulness is truly a blessing for which to be thankful because He has made a way, through Jesus, for every believer to be a champion in life by maintaining confidence in His promises and predictions.

What promises of God do you declare and count on Him to perform on your behalf?

 

Focus Friday

Focus on the following scripture throughout the day. It’s God’s Word and it’s what He desires us to believe. Believe it is true for you because God’s Word is Truth. Use it as an affirmation. Speak this Word to yourself throughout the day. Personalize it by putting your name in it!

“And this hope will not lead to disappointment. For we know how dearly God loves us…”

Romans 5:5 NLT

coming soon

Wearing Hope

Today’s post is from guest-blogger Kristi Scorza Sobieski. I met Kris at a local authors group meeting and was so encouraged by her. You can read more of her thoughts at her blog, Planted Oak. How will you wear HOPE?

M with open-handed offering tells me i am beautiful.

wearinghope1

i smile pretend acceptance, hoping he can’t see a turning-against-and-into-myself cringe.   in the way is weight gained  from swallowing food’s false comfort and i cannot accept the gift of his truth.

because beauty surely requires whole.  this body has been stretched to scarring and i cannot see past the parts of me that no longer match my past pictures-in-frame beauty.  beauty worn with the ease of someone who has always been able to see something in the mirror i can be friends with. but now this body feels misspent and lacking in the letters to make up b-e-a-u-t-i-f-u-l.

i take his words and pretend to swallow.  finding a door to close,  tears come hot.  i look at what is M’s to give and cannot believe it is mine to receive.  i take his words and crumple them up in soft, accepting tissues. along with love for myself they are left thrown away.

but truth’s nudge is wet-nose-pet-me-insistent and two days later i am digging through the discard pile for M’s words.  they don’t belong there. because his love has the same heart in better or worse. his seeing me beautiful is birthed from promises kept and love’s choosing.

promises made to me are mine to wear.

wearinghope2

i slip you’re beautiful on and it is an awkward fit.  i keep putting it on. i brush teeth and same remember daily how he sees me. who i am to him. it is beginning to feel like i am worth the wearing.

and hope? it is the same.

given by a god who keeps promises. who plans good.

open-handed hope, it is his to givemine to daily slip on until i feel the truth fit of it.

wearinghope3

for i know the plans that i have for you, declares the lord, plans for welfare and not for calamity, to give you a future and a hope.

jeremiah 29.11

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kris scorza-sobieski

people lover. writer. encourager. wife. mom. missionary kid from png. kris blogs at plantedoak.com  sharing glimpses of god in the everyday…

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Grieving What Never Was

Persevere in HOPE!