August 23, 2017

Besotted

Posted in Uncategorized tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , at 3:28 am by Broken & Brave

Have you ever heard the story of  “Cyrano de Bergerac”? It was a play written in the late 1800’s about a man named Cyrano. Cyrano was a soldier in the French army. He was extremely gifted and talented. Cyrano was a passionate and strong-willed man known for many pursuits and ambitions. He was known as a magnificent duelist, poet and musician. However, Cyrano had an enormous nose. The size of his nose, so caused him to doubt himself, that he felt he could not dare to dream of love. He was hopelessly in love with his cousin, Roxane, but never dreamed that she would ever have interest in him. He had so much self-doubt of his appearance that he failed to acknowledge his own worth as a man by the measure of all he was gifted in. He didn’t feel he was good enough to have her love.

Do you ever feel like Cyrano? Isn’t it true we are our own worst critics! All of us, not a person is excluded from this sad truth. I imagine this is because we know ourselves the best. We know our own private thoughts about ourselves. We remember every hurtful word ever spoken over us. We know our darkest secrets, or maybe not so dark secrets. We know our every flaw and shortcoming. Sure, we are aware of our strengths as well, but most people, even if they never verbalize it,  do tend to measure themselves by their areas of weakness. For some people this painful awareness becomes a major stumbling block to true victory in life, much like Cyrano. Let me now transition to another man by the name of Nehemiah.

Nehemiah, like Cyrano, was a man of action. Nehemiah was not a soldier like Cyrano, but he did serve a King. In fact, Nehemiah was the cupbearer to the King of Persia (Neh. 1:11). Nehemiah was of Jewish descent and longed to go the aid of his people who desperately needed help rebuilding the walls of Jerusalem. Nehemiah sought the King and received permission to go to the people and build a wall. What he did was so much more…he built an ever-enduring legacy of leadership amongst a people who were broken down in heart and spirit. A people much like Cyrano.

What was the difference between Nehemiah and Cyrano (aside from one being a character in a play and the other an actual figure in history)? Nehemiah revered his King, but he also knew that he had FAVOR with the King. History states that Nehemiah was very frightened to speak to the king of this matter, he prayed, mustered up the courage, and acted despite his own self-doubts.  There is a King in heaven who favors you! Would you like to know how?

Yours is a heart that intoxicates Him. When we seek him out it’s like clouding the judgments of man, which tend to be harsh, but opening the gates that release healing waters. Waters so pure and clean a path is carved in the darkness for God’s pure light to pour out with such force that it breaks free all who are bound by captivity. The result is freedom from the past, freedom from broken heartedness, freedom from heaviness, freedom from pain. So may I ask, “why are you so hard on yourself?” Maybe it’s time to look fear in the face and just stop being so afraid. It is time to stop being like Cyrano, focused on his nose attached to his face, and to look out and beyond to future things. Who said you weren’t enough? Why can’t you be a person after God’s own heart? You can have favor with both God and man. Favor is favor and is as blind to flaws as romantic love.

God is respecter of no man, but lover of all. We do not need to earn his Favor. We do not need to convince him to love us. Imagine, for just one moment that you, too, were like Nehemiah. You are cupbearer to the King. What kind of drink offering would you bring?

He longs for your praise and adoration of who He is. Not because he has ego that needs to be engaged, that’s not it at all. Journey through your imagination with me for a moment and dare to dream of a love so deep because the Lover of your Soul is enamored with you. You don’t have to hide your flaws and imperfections because he knows them, each and every one. His eye and mind are on something entirely different. He is captivated when he catches your gaze and He is enamored by your smile. Like a mother with a newborn child, she glows with radiance as she looks upon her child. She knows the child isn’t perfect and the child will have setbacks and failures in life. SHE DOESN’T CARE. All she is focused on is the love in her heart and the desire to care for and nurture a love so rare it must be Divine, it must be Sincere, for why else would her heart swell? Why else would her joy be so grand? Why else? She is in love.

When we pray to God and offer simple gratitude, our heart to his, it is like a fragrant flower releasing its sweet pollen…an aroma so pleasing… our prayers to Him. Your prayers do not have to be long or wordy. There is no need for big words, religious rituals or even a hint of eloquence to our speech. It simply needs to come from our heart. Try it and see for yourself. You are the one who will feel blessed and lifted up. Your mood when heavy will lighten. Your perspective will begin to brighten. Your heaviness of heart will dissipate. You may begin to believe in yourself and see past the nose upon your face into the realm of unlimited potential.

You are a glorious crown in the hand of a King. There is no shame, no defeat. No awkwardness of appearance like we see in the example of Cyrano. There is only a covenant of Love He desires to keep. So, approach His Throne and approach others with the confidence of Nehemiah. God loves you and longs to lavish grace and tender mercies upon you.

He is besotted.

Blessings be yours this day, and forevermore. -Nicole

Advertisements

July 1, 2017

The Wonder of Woman

Posted in Uncategorized tagged , , , , , , , , , at 10:51 pm by Broken & Brave

“She stretches out her hands to the distaff, and her hands hold the spindle.”
Proverbs 31:19

In the Book of Proverbs 31 we find the blue print for God’s kind of Wonder Woman. The woman of strength God is after is not only unafraid to get dirt under her fingernails and get busy with her work, she is resourceful. In modern times women don’t use a spindle or distaff. We don’t spin our own wool into garments. But we are all weavers. We are hemming and sewing and capable of creating panels that attach each area of life, each duty, and each relationship to each other. We hold things together and if we do it right, we make everything around us better because we added value, luster and created a Shine.

We live in a day and age where the modern day heroine is considered to be “boss” or more poplar right now “badass”. Women are incredibly unique. We possess so many attributes of resilience and strength. I applaud the tenacious female who works hard, isn’t afraid of the struggle and possesses a deep passion and grit to get after it, whatever her “it” is. But let us not forget some of our greatest virtues. We possess incredible softness and femininity. There is true strength in gentleness. We possess the roar of the lioness and we must use our roar to applaud the victories and champion the hopes, dreams and aspirations of others. We hem people together, inspiring them to live, love and work together as a unified community. We encourage. We nurture. Then we do it all without gloating. We know the true source of our strength and our hope. We create. We conquer-both our fears and our goals. We are the serene voice of empowerment to men, giving them the supplemental Strength they need to believe they can do anything.

There is something lovely, strong, yet gentle about God’s woman of honor. It is our honor, ladies, to pursue her daily.

Champion of Virtue…
I believe in you.

~Nicole

IMG_0505

November 16, 2016

Time Under Tension

Posted in Uncategorized tagged , , , , , , , , at 6:56 am by Broken & Brave

It takes a long time to build muscle and change your shape. With consistent effort, good nutrition and faithfulness you begin to see some fruit of your efforts right away, but for long term wellness you’ve got to stick and stay. Your reward is in the constant and deliberate application of it. You’ve got to be patient.

The same is true for Soul Strength. You must nurture your own heart, feed it good stuff, always be expanding your mind and growing your soul. Be open to new ideas and opportunities as they unfold. Be mindful that not every good idea is God’s idea for your life just like not every fitness protocol is the same from person to person. Seek soul strength, find wisdom, pursue it diligently like you were a Bride preparing to fit her wedding dress– ironed and pressed.

Be patient with the process.

Everyday is a great day to get better. You’ve got this! ~Nicole

“Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind and with all your strength.” Mark 12:30

img_8251