Oh boy!

The Christmas Lights went on for the first time tonight! Take a look at Mom, Dad and my handiwork:

Happy holidays !

I am Eryka

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Perspective of Glory

God’s most recent word to me concerning my time here on Earth is simply, “Polish My Gems.” He has made me a leader that women feel comfortable following. I didn’t ask for it – God made it that way. Realizing my influence has influenced me to be more intentional about my example. My mom being ill recently showed me that there’s a power working in me that’s much greater than anything I can comprehend or explain. Where I am weak, He is most definitely strong. (2 Corinthians 12:9)

GEM has had several meanings in my life over the past year. To sum it up, being a GEM basically means that God’s Glory Encompasses Me. His glory surpasses my abilities. His glory is greater than my worry. So, as I grow, I share. It’s my pleasure to teach and to speak of what God is doing and has done in my life.

The 3 P’s

Perspective. That’s how I see it.

Position. That’s where I see it.

Purpose. That’s why I see it.

I could give the devil credit and say that “he’s been busy.” I could easily blame myself for being human and prone to sin. I could point fingers at people and say they took advantage. I could blame doctors for not knowing or supervisors for pushing too hard, but still… none of them are God.

My mom is home now. She’s resting and healing. She’s learning that even she has to rest sometimes. Walking through this recent episode with her shows me how much like her I am. I too struggle to sit down and be still. I too get busy being busy and neglect myself. But I too have been humbled by a recent injury and have had to face that I too need to rest sometimes. Mom is going to be okay. She’s already okay.

The situation scared me. Around family I was the communicator and the one to take charge, but every time I was alone I had a mini meltdown. I went to pray and words wouldn’t form. I found myself repeating ‘Jesus’ over and over. I didn’t have fancy words or scripture on my tongue. Maybe I should have, but I didn’t. I just had this knowing that God was in control and that only he could really do something.

I was positioned in Christ, under the headship of the Father. I chose to acknowledge Him over and over although fear was riding my back. I had to choose Him over and over even though circumstances told me to freak out. My position is as God’s child. He’s responsible for all things concerning me. The Bible says He will perfect that concerning His. (Psalm 138:8) That means He will do whatever it takes to keep me through any and every storm that comes my way. It’s His pleasure. Perspective taught me that. I had to choose to see things from a place of knowing that all things work together for my good. (Romans 8:28) It’s easy to give in to what the doctor does or doesn’t say. It’s easy to crumble at the sound of bad news and just accept it. What’s hard is choosing to operate from a place of victory even while still running the race. Ultimately, it was Purpose that drove me to choosing to stand and trust God. Purpose reminds me that I am not my own and I am here on this Earth to fulfill an assignment. Purpose helps me to cut off relationships that hinder or distract me. Purpose is the motivator behind me pressing through even when it seems I’ve got nothing left in me. Purpose drove me to church although I hit a trash can and broke the mirror. To God be the Glory! Purposekept me going in the direction of the assignment although my mind, heart and body were fighting against me.

Overall, I am so grateful. My secret Santa got me some amazing jewelry. My mom ordered a gift for me weeks ago that just so happened to arrive while she was in the hospital which blows my mind because it’s the timing proves that 1. God is always thinking of me and 2. He knows just how and when to send us blessings that make the biggest difference in our heart. A neighbor blessed us with groceries for the family. Mom was discharged from the hospital a day earlier than expected. There are so many things to praise God for. He keeps on getting better and better.

God’s glory is His presence on a thing. It’s his stamp of approval. It’s his way of shining a spotlight on us. I’m convinced that He does things for us out of Love, but the larger purpose behind it all is so that He can receive the glory and we can witness His glory at the same time. Did I need the items I received as gifts today? Not necessarily, still God saw fit to add to me anyway. Did mom need to fall sick just 15 days before retirement? Definitely not, but she’s the oldest member of her family and to be honest, she’s not always honored or respected as such. She’s received many calls and visits from loved ones I know she has longed to connect with. I believe God used this experience to show her how much he thinks of her. I’m grateful he brought her through and I am excited to continue becoming this Gem that God spoke into existence.

It ain’t over yet! Glorrryy!!

I am Eryka

24

What a difference two dozen hours can make. Last night this time, my mom was in the hospital. Tonight, she’s peacefully sleeping in her own bed.

Was it a stroke?

Was it a bad reaction to medication?

Will it happen again?

My mind has so many questions, but I’m not sure I want answers to any of them. It doesn’t matter why it happened or how. What matters is that it happened. Growth is a process. It’s not always beautiful. It’s not always easy. But, it’s always beneficial. A newborn baby has no idea how to stand, let alone run a marathon but with growth over time, he learns just how much those little legs can actually do.

I am grateful. Tonight, I am very very grateful. I’m grateful that I have purpose. Purpose is the small voice in my head that encourages me to be strong even when I would rather crumble. Purpose is the smile that decorates my face while my heart is simultaneously breaking. Purpose helps me accept the painful, ugly phases of the process.

Trouble doesn’t last always.

There’s a time for weeping, but also a time for joy.

I am excited to see where the road leads next.

I am Eryka

Written 12/9/17 @ 9pm

#EPIC2017

Oh yes! It’s about to get real EPIC around here! Every year towards the end of the year, I seek God for a vision for the coming year. Last year, God impressed #EPIC2017 on my heart for this year.

Epic means big, grand… powerful even. It’s December. Has this year been Epic?

Well, overall it has been! The acronym for Epic is Evolutionary Power Impacting Change. I’ve definitely been changed this year, quite a few times actually.

I’ve let go of old friendships. I killed off old voices who enjoyed feeding me lies of insecurity. I’ve transformed from one who eats the meat of the word to one who prepares a meal based on the meat and serves it to others. My interaction with the other sex is very matter-of-fact-like. I now show up knowing who I am, who sent me, and what role I play in this thing I’m in. Sure, there’s much that I don’t know, but that’s why I have the Holy Spirit. God knows everything.

It is currently 2:50 AM. When I began writing this post, I did not know how drastic my day would change just moments later. The entire message was to embrace the now because now is all you have, and God is so God…

So, at 8:45 PM or so I sat down to write this post. My mom called for me just as I typed “God Knows everything.” She said her leg was hurting. I began rubbing the place where she said the pain. Within seconds, she said there was pain in her chest. Then she wasn’t saying anything at all. Then her eyes were in the back of her head and she was sweaty. Within seconds. I called 9-1-1, the paramedics came and she’s currently stabilized and spending at least one night in the hospital.

When I sat down to write this post the first time, I was in my head about what could happen within the next few weeks to really exemplify #EPIC2017. I was dreaming up ideas of reconciling with an old flame or meeting a new one. I had no idea my mom would suddenly fall ill. I also didn’t expect my counseling session to be interrupted last Wednesday by Mom being rushed to the hospital. It seems there’s a pattern. While I’m out in La La land venting about my emotions or lost in my thoughts, my Mom is transitioning. She’s retiring in weeks. She’s turning 65 this Tuesday. She’s not the 35 year old woman who birthed me anymore. She’s seasoned and refined and so much better, but she’s older. The body, mind and spirit changes over time. Looking back, I can see how Epic 2017 has been to my mom. She too has evolved and grown. God is intentional.

My mom hasn’t ever been ill to the point of being down. She’s the one that’s bedside to everyone else. As bad as I needed it to, The world didn’t stop when she did. In fact, my world kinda begun. I’m used to being the youngest person in the room. I’m the baby of the family. Tonight, I realized that anything can happen at a moment’s notice and I must be ready. It’s time that I step up and grow up in my world. It’s time that I take more of a leadership role – not only behind the scenes, but also publicly. In a sense, I feel as though I’m becoming the Woman of the house. I was imagining the title would come with a husband, but instead it comes with purpose. Daddy still needed tending too. The home still has its chores. There’s still life to be lived. I’m becoming a woman capable of continuing my mom’s legacy in and out of her presence.

The baton has been passed to me. As I take it, and run, I know Jesus is with me and has sent angels before me. I bind all insecure thoughts and emotions that may rise. I bind the spirit of neediness. Everything I needed to hold me together and get me through this evening was within me. No other sibling showed. No one was there to hold me and wipe my tears. I had to be strong for mom and for dad. I had to Man Up and though I had my moment, it was with God. He’s really, really here with me.

So what do the coming 22 days hold? Only God knows, but I’m anchored and prepared to play my role.

Keep my mom in your prayers please.

I am Eryka

What time is it?

My Pastor often reminds me that there are 3 Times to recognize in life.

He Time. That’s the time we set aside and dedicate to God. It’s when we pray and commune with Him like a child with their Father. It’s where we share and learn from Him. It’s where our relationship with Him gains it’s fire.

We Time. That’s the gift God gives us through fellowship. He allows us to connect with one another and create memories, share lessons and encourage each other. Community has its time.

Last, but equally important as He Time, is Me Time. That’s the time we take aside from everything and everyone. This is where we get silent. It’s where we refresh. It’s where we tend to the most gentle cries of our own heart. It’s also time that I am too guilty of skipping.

Tonight, I attempted to do some work. The computer was not having it. I found myself making an awesome cup of hot cocoa and resorting to my own little corner to pen this post. It’s cold and I love chocolate! As a kid, I asked my parents for cup like every night! Without realizing it, my inner voice had been asking for a warm cup of incredible chocolate and I had been ignoring myself. Tonight, I stopped to listen to what I had to say.

I want chocolate!

I heard the little voice in my heart scream to my brain and my feet and hands effortlessly fulfilled the request. I’m happy. It feels good going down. It warmed my insides. It calmed my spirit. The anxiety has faded. It’s amazing what a few moments of silence with yourself can do.

Bundle up!

Hump Day

I’m not going to sell a dream that being saved means the body automatically stops desiring the touch of another human. I won’t even say that keeping myself is an easy task… read back a few posts and that’s more than evident. Lol.

Today is Hump Day. I feel like being humped.

Thank God for Grace! May God’s grace be sufficient to cover all your and my desires today and always.

I am Eryka

Balancing Act

This photo is intriguing. It appears to be one rock on top of another… or is it one rock supporting 5 others? Whatever it is, it sure is balanced.

This recent foot injury has brought me much wisdom, mostly because I’ve been still and in one place. I’ve been able to speak to God again and I’ve made myself more open to just waiting. But two weeks ago, this balance was lacking. It’s easy to pile one assignment on top of another, especially when they’re enjoyable or “easy” to accomplish. A big lesson I learned recently is, Ease doesn’t mean necessary. There are a lot of things that are easy to do, but should I devote time and energy to them all? Probably not. The proof? Simple, easy tasks when piled one on top of another disrupts any chance balance has of existing.

Sure, the rocks seem to have made it work, but I’m no rock. I’m way better! I’m a soul in a human body. I get to walk and speak and go and see. I get to exist on this planet and hopefully add something beautiful to it. Each day has enough responsibility in it without my trying to be Super Woman. When I hurt my left foot, I was helping my Mom decorate. There were other things I should have stopped to do, but thinking I could do it all, I piled more things to do onto myself until my left foot made me sit down.

I tried to “be strong” & tough it out. I wrapped it and walked around on it for hours cleaning and baking and doing everyday activities. Eventually I went to the ER for an X-Ray. They were very specific in telling me to stay off it, still I decided I could go inside the pharmacy to get my medicine, while on crutches. I tripped leaving out of the store and sprang my right food. That’s not balance. That’s pride. I was so determined to be okay when I needed to acknowledge that I was hurt and allow myself to heal.

So, for the last ten days I’ve been in constant pain. I have cancelled everything that could be cancelled. I have been saying “No” left and right and to be honest – it feels good. I’ve been massaging my feet, cleaning my space, writing and praying more and reading for enjoyment, not just to study. I’ve found balance. I wasn’t even searching for it… but I should have been.

Sure, I’m great at a lot of things, but that’s no obligation to always do all of them. I deserve breaks too! Jesus rested. God made rest a commandment. He set aside an entire way called The Sabbath. Yes, work has its season, but so does rest.

While at rest, I’ve learned to be more humble, ask for those things I really need, and I’ve even gotten better at being quiet! To God be the Glory! It’s easy to stay the same, but growth requires change and change is a productive balance.

Love is balanced. Love understands the need for attention but it also awards space. It supports without enabling. It appreciates without codependency. I am Love, therefore I must keep my balance. If I tip too far in any direction, I fall into trouble and it’s just not worth it.

I don’t have all the answers. I have no clue what tomorrow holds, but for the first time in forever (*Frozen is a great movie*) I am not interesting in trying to figure it out. I’d rather be surprised. I like it that way.

As for my feet… well, they’re healing. It’s been rough but God is faithful. People have turned their backs and seemingly forgot me, but He’s been here the entire time! He keeps me going. He gave me strength and energy to sing with our choir 3 times this past week. He gave me the courage and strength to recite poetry a few nights ago. He keeps showing up to give me courage and strength. He keeps proving that He’s never not with me!

Answers I do not have, but balance like Victory – is mine!

I am Eryka

Whose house?

So I’m that girl that sees the best in others and I intentionally highlight the best in others as often as possible because I believe everyone is important. I’m the girl who falls head over heels at the idea of what a man could be, all the while knowing he may never care to actually live up to that standard. Being nice comes natural to me. Liking people is the only option. I don’t make enemies because I believe every human is my relative. The same God spoke life to us all, right?

My point is… I’m a sappy Lovey Dovey Woman. I’m emotional and romantic and sentimental and all the traits that follow. I appreciate expressions of love and I love affection. I said all of this to say… not everyone is this way. Some people have never experienced Love and they’ve not yet received Christ, so they simply don’t know Love. One cannot express or give what they’re not familiar with.

The absence of love is not necessarily hate, so these people can be hard to identify. They repel Love and loving situations because they’re foreign to it. It’s not their faults. Unfortunately their parents may not have known Love properly and in turn they weren’t able to pass it on.

I’ve been loved fiercely my entire life. God put me in the right family. He knew which man and which woman to bring me through. Have they lived perfectly? No. Who has?! But they continue to learn and lead with Love. What they didn’t know 30 years ago, they’re figuring out. Where they failed in the 90’s, they rose above it in the 00’s. Basically they never seem to give up on Love.

I’m grateful. Love is the fertilizer that grooms me. Love is the soil that warms me. Love is the hand that prunes me. Because of Love, I Am. I can’t help but to show love. It’s who I am. It’s what I do. It’s all I ever hope to become. Love is all encompassing. It’s all inclusive. It’s eternal. I pray that everyone who has not known Love for them self encounters Christ and surrenders to His Love, but I refuse to stop Loving simply because someone else may not know how to receive it

Love is patient and kind. Love is faithful. It took time for me to get here and it’ll take others however long it’ll take. Each has its own process. The more I grow in Love, the better I become at sharing it.

Love is the owner of this house.

I am Eryka

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