Category: obedience

Get off your phone !!

Hi all,

Well, it’s the beginning of a new year (wasn’t that just the other day??) so, as per usual, there’s lots of talk of ‘New year, new me’ and ‘what are your new years resolutions?” etc etc.  Now, I don’t really do ‘new years resolutions’ so to speak, but anytime is a good time to want to improve.   One thing I DO do tho is listen to Holy Spirit prompting….  and this leads me to this blog.   Buckle up peeps… here we go…

Something that has been apparent to me is how much time is spent on our phones.  To be fair, there are a lot of logical reasons why this is so. ..  Email, banking, camera/photos, calendar, ah duh… the fact that it’s a phone (Ha Ha), your Bible app, YouTube, plus so much more…  there’s plenty of reasons we’re on our phones that aren’t necessary.  Social media being the most obvious.  Don’t get me wrong, I’m a social media girl thru and thru.  I have a FB, Insta (actually I have a couple of each) & YouTube channel for crying out loud, but there’s a healthy amount of use, as well as a healthy quality of use.  (to do with the quality issue..  just one point peeps… BE KIND ALREADY !!)

Let’s look at a few of these that could be limited, if not eliminated.    Emails CAN be checked only on a desktop.. heck, it’s how we used to do it.  I actually don’t have my main family email address on my phone, but I do have my personal one on there.  The major reason for this is actually purely practical.  If there’s an email, say ticket confirmation, or a barcode etc, then I’ll have that go to my phone, simply for ease of access.  But, in reality, I COULD own a printer and not need to do this.  Personally I don’t find emails to be something that keeps me on my phone anyway, but hey, everyone’s different.

Calendar… Now, same thing, it’s not like a sit there for any length of time looking at my calendar (that’s just stupid), but it is certainly handy if making an appt while out, to be able to see when in fact you’re available for said appointment.   I have made the decision this year though to buy a planner and use that also.  So that when I’m looking at the week ahead, I can do it in there.  Yes, it seems like some double work, but it’s not really.  This big planner I’ve begun to use this year is an A4 ‘day to a page’ type, as I wanted to be able to journal in it if desired too.  I’ve done some YouTube & blog planning in there, and hope to continue that practice, so when you’re in the planner every day using it, it’s not really an additional thing to be doing to check out what’s in the week ahead.

Camera/Photos.. well, that’s pretty much impossible to not use, or even minimise.  It would be one thing if the camera in your phone didn’t take great pictures and video, but the new phones take AMAZING photos now.  So in some ways, when using it for that purpose, it’s really just like you’re using a camera.  Plus with a FB & insta page to promote, it’s just far too convenient to take your photo on there in 2 steps, you’ve done it.  As opposed to downloading photos off your camera to your PC, and then uploading to your page.

OK.. so doesn’t sound like we’re making too much progress at this point, but let’s hit it where it hurts…  Personal Social media usage.  There’s a really simple way to greatly reduce your time on social media…  delete the apps off your phone and only do your social media surfing from your desktop once a day.  I do have Instagram on my phone for my business account, and all posts automatically share to my FB business page, so that’s easy peasy.  If you don’t want to delete it all together, then simply sign out of it, so that it’s that little bit harder to ‘just jump on for a quick squiz’.

Banking .… I know this one is super doper convenient.. and sometimes actually is necessary (how did we ever survive without it?), but in reality, it’s not too safe to be doing banking from your phone anyway.  So, in short, do your best to only do banking from your desktop.

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The BIGGEST one that’s been on my heart in this regard is using the Bible App.  Just keeping it real… I get hung up on the streak… lol.  Yep, I just admitted that.  I was literally nearly at 400 days in the app in 2018 and then I went to Europe, lost a day in disappearing day land, and opened the app on landing to that terrible sight of the big fat number ZERO !!  Arrrggghhh.  Anyway, so I’m listening to Sadie Robertson and going old school and using an ACTUAL BIBLE !!.  Thanks Sadie !!!  If you wanna hear Sadie’s message, click HERE !!  It’s only been a couple weeks, but I LOVE it !!  It really is a different experience.

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With the Bible app, but also others as well…  it’s so easy to be distracted by other notifications….. even if on your phone for something perfectly reasonable.  So, my next tip is to turn off your notifications.  I don’t have them turned on, even for my business pages.   I just check in morning and night… and if I post something, than I can clearly see if something is there that needs addressing.

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Another suggestion with the bible reading, which I have found super beneficial, is this… when you kinda don’t have the option to use your actual bible, or for some reason it’s not possible..… use the audio option in the app.  I not only found this solved the interruption issues, but I also found that I ‘read’ so much more of the Word since starting this.  You’ll have your verse of the day come up each day you go in… but at the bottom it says ‘read entire chapter’…  when you’re literally holding your phone in your hand, it’s far too easy to just read that one verse and think you’re good to go.  But listen to a chapter a day.. and you’ll be amazed how it’ll boost your day ahead.

Another issue re using the bible app is the bible studies.  Now, if it’s going to be the only bible study you do, then of course do the ones on offer in the app… but if I could encourage you in anything.. it’s to do an ACTUAL HOLD IN YOUR HANDS bible study.  If it’s got a workbook to go along, then even better… if not, then simply journal.

Watching YouTube…  while it’s super easy to catch up on a lil YT on your phone… can I just suggest that you do it on a desktop, or on a tablet where you’re not signed into anything that will cause you to be sucked into other apps. (This applies to reading blogs too… LOL. Are you on your phone right now??? ha ha ) This seems to work really well for me.  I don’t even have social media on my tablet…..  it’s basically just for YouTube watching really.  I actually don’t watch any TV…. the only show I watch is The Crown, so basically I do some binge watching every 2yrs and that’s it.  LOL.  I prefer to find some really great vlogging families on YT, and follow their lives.  It’s way better than watching some fictional show.

For your info… my fave vlogging families are 2 in a Zoo, Alex & Phil Congillere, Loftis party of 6, Grace for the Millers, The Mills Family, & This Gathered Nest.  All of these families are really wholesome Christian families, 3 of them being Pastors.

Another thing that keeps us all on our phones is messaging/texting.  When did it become ‘uncool’ to actually pick up the phone and RING someone?  I’m sure I don’t need to tell you the dangers in misunderstood texts, and what that can lead to.    So, all I can say on this one is RING, DON’T TXT.  (I know, easier said than done.)

I’m really excited to see what improvement I can see come about though these simply changes…  and I’d love to hear how it’s improved your life too.

Blessings

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Why are we so selfish?

Hi all !!

I’m actually not posing the question in the light you may be assuming….  so read on, and maybe you’ll end up as thoroughly confused as I am.  🤣 #sorrynotsorry

Why, when we KNOW that God’s plan is the absolute best for us, that His ways are best, that His grace is sufficient, do we still hurt/get mad/get sad when things don’t run the course we kinda want them to?

I’ll use a very real example…. DEATH !!  When my Dad went to be with the Lord at 5.55pm on April 15th, 2017,  I fell to the floor and wailed.. like FULL ON wailed !! Now, if you’ve followed my blog for awhile over on my ‘Lovely Shiloh’ blog site, you’ll know that I received a vision from the Lord of this moment… if you haven’t read it, you find it HERE.   I’ve asked myself so many times since… Why was I so upset?  This was literally the moment my Dad had craved his ENTIRE life….  he was going to meet Jesus for crying out loud…  why, if I love him as much I know I do…  why was I not fist pumping the air with the biggest smile on my face for what he was experiencing at that moment?

I fully realise that this is a question that has a very obvious answer, but still… when I don’t doubt a single word in God’s Word, when I know his promises are true, when I know Romans 8:18 to be true… WHY did I not see this for the moment it was… the greatest moment of my Dad’s life?

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Spoiler alert… I don’t actually have the answer to this, other than the obvious ones…  ‘The level of grief you experience reflects the level of love you have for that person.’ & ‘you crave the physical presence of that person in your life.’  These are both wonderful things as it speaks to the relationship you had with that person.  I don’t need to go into how much my Dad meant to me… it’s been covered in several other blogs…. but as a general explanation… He was my rock, my greatest supporter, my example, my friend.. and the best Dad a girl could ever ask for.

When it comes to the loss of a loved one, I think perhaps it’s enough to WANT to have that type of faith level, even while knowing that it’s perhaps not possible to be 110% selfless in this regard (& this regard only, to be clear).  It is certainly easier nearly 3yrs later to be ok with God’s plan for Dad… I mean heck, it was easier once the initial sting went… but there are still days, moments of days, when I so crave the presence of my Dad.  Oh the comfort felt knowing that I will see him again !!! 💜

You can also ask this question of yourself in other regards tho. Why am I so selfish that I want this one, or that thing.. when perhaps that isn’t what God wants for me?  Even if we’re very self disciplined and accept the opening & closing of doors in our lives as the Lord wills, it’s pretty much impossible to not feel emotions over each situation.

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I think it’s only a positive thing if we are striving to be 100% happy with WHATEVER God’s plans are for our lives.  I think it’s the growth we strive to achieve in how we react to things that defines the speed at which we mature in the faith.

I give the example of a close friendship of mine that very sadly came to an end a few years ago.  It’s only now, several years later, with a new friendship formed with that  person, that I can see God’s hand in that situation.  Why those things had to happen.   To be clear, how I always reacted during the hurt of that time did not need to happen, but that’s the biggest thing to come out of what was a terrible time.  I was not in a place, was not spiritually mature enough, to accept/see God’s will in the situation.  He was dragging me away kicking and screaming… and man was I kicking and screaming.

Through pain comes growth !  Such a true statement.  It’s part of my testimony now… and we all know.. we don’t up with a testimony without a test or two.  Sad, but true.

Wouldn’t it be wonderful if we could just learn this stuff quicker than we do?  ha ha.  #wishfulthinking

I’m thankful for God’s Word that gives me such encouragement at all times, but mostly in those times when perhaps I’m not understanding God’s plan.

“When I look at your heavens, the work of your fingers, the moon and the stars, which you have set in place, what is man that you are mindful of him, and the son of man that you care for him?” Psalm 8:3-4
“Many are the plans in a person’s heart, but it is the LORD’s purpose that prevails.”
Proverbs 19:21
“But if God so clothes the grass, which is alive in the field today, and tomorrow is thrown into the oven, how much more will he clothe you, oh you of little faith!” Luke 12:28
“For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways, declares the LORD. For as the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways and my thoughts than your thoughts.” Isaiah 55:9
“For this God is our God for ever and ever: he will be our guide even unto death.” Psalm 48:14
“Trust in the LORD with all your heart, and do not lean on your own understanding. In all your ways acknowledge him, and he will make straight your paths.” Proverbs 3:5-6
“Have you not known? Have you not heard? The LORD is the everlasting God, the Creator of the ends of the earth. He does not faint or grow weary; his understanding is unsearchable.” Isaiah 40:28
“The fear of the LORD is the beginning of wisdom all those who practice it have a good understanding. His praise endures forever!” Psalm 111:10
Forever Thankful !!
Blessings Peeps
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Participating in Halloween ! WHAT !

Hi all,

So the question on everyone’s lips is… so are you? or aren’t you?  I am beyond surprised myself to say that I AM allowing my kiddos to participate in Halloween this year, after NEVER having let them before.  Now, don’t get me wrong.. are we going all out, decorating the house.. buying costumes… NO !  However, I’ve told them that they can trick o treat in the neighbourhood if they so wish, and can organise their own ‘costume’.  I will also purchase (only good quality.. coz i’m funny like that) lollies to hand out at the door.  Will I slip in some tracts?? Maybe.  😂🤣😂 Jokes, I probably won’t.  But will I be praying my butt off that seeds are sown that evening?  HECK YES !!

Oh wait.. in regards to decorating… there will be a pumpkin at the front door on the night, but that’s it, and really it’s more about how much I love pumpkins.  😊

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I have always been very anti-Halloween.. mostly because I was brought up that way.  Of course you can find all sorts of articles that can paint it one way or another.. and trust me, I’ve read a LOT of them over the years.  A few months ago, I began to think about possibly allowing the kids to participate, and I was VERY surprised at those thoughts.  I mean, I’ve been avidly against it.. in every way.  The Holy Spirit does love to ‘throw us a loop’, as I’ve found several times in my life.  Homeschooling being the biggest one to date!

I have always just thought that Halloween has demonic parts to it, so therefore I wanted to stay away all together.  But, what I believe God has been teaching me is this…   I have taught my children of the very real existence of the spiritual realm, while also hopefully teaching them how to function in it. (before you freak out, the spiritual realm is not solely bad, it’s also where the Holy spirit and the angels operate.. hence LOADS OF GOOD !!!! ).  By then keeping my children from participating in something that, yes, has spiritual elements, I’m not trusting the Lord to work in and through them to make good decisions around it.

I believe I could be teaching my children some negative things by painting Halloween to be this absolutely terrible thing.  The last thing I want to do is instill fear in them.  I also do not want to teach them superstition, or that it’s good to isolate oneself from a perceived ‘bad’ celebration, when in fact very good things could come from it.  I want to have faith in the Lord’s work within them, for them to have confidence in their own ability to discern for themselves what a situation holds for them (good or bad).

I also believe that it does come across negative for those houses that don’t participate.  I have always thought this, no matter how strongly I felt against Halloween.. for this reason, I pretty much ALWAYS planned to be out that night… so that we weren’t actually home to ‘turn people away’.  I do see that pure joy is brought to children who are blessed with lollies at people’s doors.  It also can’t be ignored that it is a great neighbourhood event that brings about meetings and conversations that perhaps would never have happened otherwise.

The biggest thing though for me is coming to the realisation that, for an aware believer, the enemy only gets licence to play around in your life, if you ALLOW it.  It doesn’t happen by accident.

We really need to remind ourselves that spiritual darkness is everywhere.. in books, TV shows, movies, games, politics… and even Christian celebrations like Christmas and Easter.  If we don’t learn/know how to safely live our lives with these things in play, we could be opening ourselves up to trouble… and let’s be real..  we all have enough of our own troubles… we certainly don’t need additional.

So, to wrap things up…  I am choosing to see this Halloween (just taking it one step a time…  not signing up for life long Halloween celebrations, just to be clear.LOL) as a very possible outreach for our family.   The Lord will use the evening as He wills and I am making myself open to that, rather than restrict Hm.

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Disclaimer… I do not, by any means, expect other believers to be completely onboard with this.   I so strongly believe that we are all convicted in different areas and at different strengths (for want of a better word).  If you had told me earlier this year that I would happily allow my children to participate in Halloween, I would not have believed you.

Isn’t God Fun !!

Blessings

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Thankfulness vs Pridefulness

Hi all,

I’ve been thinking on this topic a little of late, so thought I’d share some thoughts with you.

I first started really thinking on this due to the 30day squat challenge I’m currently doing.  I’m on day 29, so basically finished, but I said in my insta post today that I was ‘quite proud of myself’ for having reached this point and having done EVERY day’s set amount of squats.  As I said in the post, I really did wonder if I’d give the tick that I’d done the amount for that day, when maybe I hadn’t quite done the total.

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I thought this, not out of a fear of laziness on my part, but the fact that when, on day 1, and only 50 squats were required,  I’d look forward to those big numbers of over 100 for most days, & wonder if I’d achieve that every single day.

To be where I am now, one day from the end, and having achieved every day’s amount is quite amazing to me.  I’m blown away by what my body has achieved.

As I’ve said before, I do love accountability… it drives me, keeps me focused and on track…  so these types of challenges are really great for me…. and making them public just cements my desire to achieve it.  But not so that I can hear ‘well done’ from others… but so that they can maybe see themselves doing the same, achieving similar benefits etc.

So, this is what lead me to the train of though in regards to accomplishment.. and whether being proud of your achievements is showing a lack of humility.

We know that being humble is a BIG BIG BIG part of being a follower of Christ.  In order to become a Christian, we need to be humble enough to admit we’re a sinner, die to self, love our neighbour as ourselves.. and heaven forbid (🤣) , love our enemies.    It’s hard to do those things if you are prideful.

When we think, and being right in that thought, that being prideful is a sin… then what do we do in a situation where we feel proud of an accomplishment?  I think the key is to constantly remember that we only achieve the things we do, in and through the strength of our Saviour.  Several days of this squat challenge I remember verbally thanking Jesus for giving me the strength to actually do some 200+ squats, as there have been days when I simply could not have done it on my own strength.

I particularly think of a day late last week when I had a bad head cold.  I am still amazed, looking back, that I still did the amount for that day.  Thankfully though, the absolute worst day of the head cold did happen to be a rest day in the challenge (Praise Jesus !).

Another important distinction is that having DElIGHT in your achievements is not being prideful… knowing that your work will result in further good things is something to delight in.  Delighting in the fact that your body has achieved something you doubted , or didn’t know, it could do, is also recognising the amazing God created body that you are blesssed to have.  The fine line though would be if you are delighting in others NOTICING your achievements.

“So I saw that there is nothing better than that a man should rejoice in his work, for that is his lot,” (Ecc. 3:22).

To clarify, we need to pull that apart a little, as if we enjoy others raving about our achievements simply because we like others to think well of us, than that’s pride right there.. but if others can gain by witnessing our accomplishments, than that is furthering God’s work through us.

Another big thing .. and one that seems to be a very notable point with me, is the difference between Thankfulness and entitlement.  I’m not entitled to a strong, healthy body that allows me to achieve these things… I am THANKFUL to have a strong healthy body that can achieve these things.  Constantly finding the path that leads back to Jesus is your sure fire way to stay humble.

“Naked I came from my mother’s womb, and naked shall I return. The LORD gave, and the LORD has taken away; blessed be the name of the LORD,” (Job 1:21).

Blessings peeps

Respect the temple

xox

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In a great headspace !!

As I was walking Cooper this afternoon for his normal late afternoon walk, it occurred to me, that other than the sometimes yuckiness of life….  hormonal teenage outbursts, middle aged husband emotions (😂),  continuing to grieve my Dad, the still unreconciled extended family situation, plus normal ‘life’ stuggles…  my life is in a really fantastic place.  I know that this is all because of Jesus, our ultimate peacemaker.

 Peace I leave with you; my peace I give you. I do not give to you as the world gives. Do not let your hearts be troubled and do not be afraid. John 14:27

I‘m very blessed to have pretty much always had a very strong surety when it comes to my faith.  I don’t struggle with doubt, or unbelief in any areas…  and I KNOW, beyond a shadow of doubt, that this strength in my faith is what places me in this great place in life.  If I made the mistake of looking at things logically, maybe I’d struggle to not get depressed about it.  BUT, I know that God’s plans are the BEST plans, so even when something doesn’t happen, or not happen, when I think it should….  or something doesn’t come together that I wished had…. or God pushes me down a pathway I was hesitant (understatement) to go…  I have the confidence in knowing that God’s got this !!  

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What I was most thinking about when this came to me on my walk this afternoon was my health and fitness journey.  I know I covered this in the last blog, but I’m really finding the social media outlets not only a tool of accountability, but a great encouragement.

I had to buy 3 major pieces of equipment in order to dive into this ministry that God has for me….  when the 2nd arrived a couple of days ago, I said to my husband… “This is getting real, when the 3rd package arrives, I actually have to do this.”  Like I said in the last blog.. exciting, but scary !!  🖥📸💜🏃🏽‍♀️

Another thing that had me pondering where I’m at, is the people that we’re surrounded by.  It’s a no brainer that we do our best when championed on by loved ones and friends.

As iron sharpens iron, so one person sharpens another.  Proverbs 27:17

I’m very blessed to have really wonderful people around me, but like most people, I also have those around me that are kinda hoping I fail….  those that think this is just a faze.. and I’ll just go back to the unhealthy weight and food choices that were my life 3+years ago.  I also have people in my life who choose to see something about me that simply isn’t me.   All I can say about that is…hey… haters gonna hate.  Move on, but pray for them like crazy.. coz happy people want the best for others… unhappy, or damaged people… do not.  So, whatever way you look at it, those that maybe don’t champion you on in your life….  or worse, outright speak negatively about you..  need our prayers more than anyone else.  

 

Back to the possibility of back tracking in fitness… even if solely for physical comfort, I’d need to stay off dairy and big amounts of meat intake…..  which is a BIG part of having a healthy body…. so even if I were to let the physical exercise go, I’d still be far healthier than I was previously.  Having said that, I kinda LOVE my walks, my workouts, my clothes (😂), so I can’t see me going away from this healthy lifestyle.

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In order to keep it real, I’m not saying I never get down… coz man, I do !  I was in a real funk a couple of days ago for an evening and a day… and I just couldn’t explain it… It was near the anniversary of my Dad going Home to the Lord, but I really didn’t think it was that.. it was different….  and low and beyond.. the dreaded monthlies arrived today… so waa laa… explanation found !!  🤔

On this front, I actually received a letter with a surgery date for my much dreaded Hysterectomy, but as it was going to clash with my daughter’s 18th b’day & party, I had to let them know I couldn’t do that date… so back onto the waitlist I go.  Heartbroken?? NOT

As it’s Easter Saturday (is that actually an offical thing?? I don’t think so.. but anyway)… so in just 17mins… it’ll be the time my Dad went Home on Easter Saturday 2017.  Last year, it was rough, as easter fell BEFORE the date of the anniversary, but his year, it’s already passed, so it seems a lot easier.  However, I”m choosing to not dwell on it, so there’s that.

In regards to my blog pages, I’ll just let you all know that I will be consolidating my two pages.  I’m halfway through blogging my Europe trip with my sister last year, so I’ll finish that off before wrapping the page up… but after that, this will be my main blog page, so as to best facilitate this new health, wellness and fitness ministry.

My entire homeschooling journey, as well as Master 14s ADHD diagnosis & journey are over on Lovely Shiloh, as well as travel blogs, preparing for and then grieving the loss of my Dad.. and general life.  Feel free to go check them out, but there’s 248 blogs over there as we go live…..  so just a bit of reading for you.  Here is the link.  😀

I’m wondering if there’s a way to make a copy of all blogs…  without literally printing them all out.. if anyone knows of a way, please tell me, as I’d love to do that.

OK..    that’s it for now.

Blessings Peeps.  xox

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Something’s in the pipeline

Hi all.

It’s cooling down here in Brisbane, which is great !!  Getting out to walk/run, or even just doing a workout in general is just so much more enjoyable.  I kinda (like a LOT) hate being hot.   So, PRAISE GOD for Autumn !!

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As you all know, I’m on a journey of being more obedient to the Holy Spirit and allowing him to work through me with my passion for Health & fitness.  As I revealed in my previous blog, I’ve started a instagram, solely for my health & fitness posts.  Check it out here if you haven’t already.  I have been blown away by the response, and what an encouragement it has been to me.

(For those already following, I did have to rebrand ever so slightly, as the original was just too close to the Fab Fit Fun box company.  Whoopsie ! )

Back to the obedience journey…  some equipment has been purchased, leaps of faith have been made, and confidence found that I didn’t realise I had.   Not too sure when I’ll fully reveal this particular Holy Spirit prompting… but I’ll say it’s BIG.. and it’s something I NEVER thought I’d ever be doing.

I’m so reminded of Isaiah 54:2 Enlarge the place of your tent, stretch your tent curtains wide, do not hold back; lengthen your cords, strengthen your stakes.

It’s actually really fun (while also being scary) to 100% get onboard with God’s plans for you.  Like I said, I’m being taken down paths I never thought I’d trod….  and learning so much on the way.  Making new friends, learning new skills…  moving my tent pegs out further.  

Another passage that was highlighted for me these past few weeks… which I really think has basically became the mantra of my life 3 years ago, is I Corinthians 9:26-27 So I do not run aimlessly; I do not box as one beating the air.  But I discipline my body and keep it under control, lest after preaching to others I myself should be disqualified.  

Now, HELLO.. if that isn’t some accountability scripture right there, I don’d know what is.    Ever since I put my very first health and fitness related blog up 3years ago (read it here), I was very aware that I was making myself more accountable in that area.   I knew that while any info I shared was all to do with me, my journey, my experiences etc etc, there were other people that would quite possibly take the suggestions on, or make similar changes in their lives.

The responsibility of this did not go un-noticed by me.  I wouldn’t call it a weight, but it is a constant ‘presence’.. something for me to constantly bear in mind.

1 Thessalonians 5:11 is a constant reminder for me of what I ultimately need to be doing in my health & fitness outreach.  Therefore encourage one another and build one another up, just as you are doing.  and Proverbs 27:17  also reminds me that I’M actually being helped greatly throughout this journey, as I connect with others who are likeminded Iron sharpens iron, and one man sharpens another.

I’d really love your prayers as I walk further down this new path.  It’s exciting, but it’s also nerve racking..  so yes, any prayers would be appreciated.

Blessings Peeps !!

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