Selah~Day 129 “Self-Pity: One of the Devil’s Favorite Weapons”

One of the enemy’s favorite weapons: SELF-PITY!

Since I started this 10,000 Reasons journey, people have asked me different questions like, How do you stay consistent? What will you do when this journey is over? Have you noticed an increased attack from the Devil? Has the enemy attacked your emotions like crazy? I can answer each of those questions with general responses, but I am going to “vent” on the last question for a moment.

My purpose for taking this journey 129 days ago was to get my emotions in check. I don’t want to be a person who is led by emotions or feelings. As a human and furthermore a woman, I have emotions and feelings. At some times, they are heightened. God gave me these emotions and feelings. But, He doesn’t want them to control my life. I also realize they can be misleading and mis-managed. So, when my life was flooded with emotions of doubt, despair, discouragement, anger, fear, hate, bitterness, loss, grief, and on and on and on, I had to make an immediate decision to not allow the devil to use those feelings and emotions as ¬†weapons against me. So, Selah~My 10,000 reasons journey, A journey of thankfulness~ was going to be the BEST weapon of choice to defeat the enemy.

Because of this journey, I have made a decision to be VERY PRESENT in every moment of every day. With every moment, I am looking for a way to Bless the Lord. So far, I have never had a difficult time in finding ways to Bless Him. With God in your life, every moment~even the tough, yucky, and disappointing ones~you can find God in the mix and a way that He is working on your behalf. Being very aware of every conversation, every interaction, and every moment has its down-side too. There are times when I haven’t looked for the positive in the situation, but rather allowed my weapon of thanks to be weaker than the enemies weapon.

Self-Pity is one of the devil’s favorite weapons to use. And this week, I found myself at times waving the white flag of surrender to it. Self-Pity does not play favorites. Everyone is invited to its party. While there, you can hang out with some of the most popular guests there: “No One Cares About Me, I Can Never Do Enough, No One Understands, I Am Just Not Good Enough, Everyone Else is Better, God has Forsaken Me, People Just Don’t Understand Me, Why Should I Even Care.” And, the invite list goes on and on and on.

If you go to this Pity-Party, your feelings and emotions will mis-lead you and mis-manage you (think about it…self-pity is one of the MOST EXAGGERATED emotions)! Your perceptions will be seen through a jaded lens and you WILL NOT fight with the right weapons, instead, you will retreat, draw back, isolate, hide, and eventually become INEFFECTIVE for yourself, your family, and most importantly for the purpose that God has for you.

Urban Dictionary says, “Self-Pity is easily the most destructive of the non-pharmaceuitucal narcotics; it is addictive, gives momentary pleasure and separates the victim from reality.”

Self-Pity is a negative emotion and one that always makes you a VICTIM and not a VICTOR. It is not a friend, but rather a foe, who never allows you to deal with the adverse situation. If you party with pity, you will never defeat the enemy. You will always be subject to his control.

So, the next time you have an invitation to Pity’s party, tear it up and throw it away. DO NOT go there. Besides, the company is horrible, the atmosphere is icky, the music depresses, the food is stale and gross, and the party favors are not fun to play with.

My 28 Thanks:

1. Self-Pity didn’t win today.

2. I can control my thought life.

3. I say “No” to Pity’s Party.

4. I planned out the rest of the KidMotion sermon series for the year! Wowzeers~I have never been so busy and I have never been so far ahead. God is good.

5. Judah asked me to play “Jesus is Alive Right Now” so he could sing to it. He sang that song and did the motions! My preschool team is AMAZING. Preschoolers are the church right now too! Judah loves Jesus.

6. Miss Olivia, Pastor Marc and Talena’s daughter, hung out with me today in the KidMotion room. She is the sweetest little girl. She has a sensitive spirit to the Lord.

7. The people at Wacky World are awesome to work with. Bruce gave me an A+++++ on my homework assignment. I can’t believe I am going to get to work with this great group of creative genius.

8. People who can think outside the box.

9. Coordinating multiple busy schedules is frustrating. But, the Lord always provides insight and works it out. I think my calendar is set.

10. A meeting that usually takes two hours, only took one hour.

11. Open conversation that leads to solutions.

12. Gary built me the coolest boat out of a pallet board. I am talking about Paul’s shipwreck on Sunday and if you are going to have a cool shipwreck, you have to have a cool boat!

13. I found a craft that I had purchased in the summer, but didn’t use. The craft works perfectly for Sunday’s small groups!

14. Everything is ready to go for Sunday!

15. My car got a much needed check-up. This check-up included: new brakes, oil change, new roters, new brake pads, tires balanced, etc…

16. My family will be safe when traveling in my car and we had the money in savings to pay for that hefty expense.

17. I needed one more main ingredient for dinner, so Gary ran to the store. We have an awesome grocery store right down the street. I love convenient City life.

18. GOALS! Each year, we have to make both professional and personal goals to work towards accomplishment in the coming year. In January, I put on my personal goal sheet, “I want to spend more time in the kitchen cooking for my family.”

19. I spent time in the kitchen once again. I have a most beautiful kitchen.

20. I made a Chicken Tortilla Soup without a recipe and it was awesome. I also experimented with some new spices and they were great.

21. Judah ate some of the soup. I can’t believe he ate soup…

22. Family walk around the neighborhood.

23. Judah loves numbers. I hate numbers, so I am so glad that my son loves them. Everywhere we go, he calls out the numbers that he sees.

24. While walking the neighborhood, we stopped at EVERY mailbox so Judah could figure out the house number. It was super cute.

25. Judah and I had fun playing in the rice pool again. Play time is always a time to build relationship and make eternal investments.

26. Gary gave Judah his bath tonight.

27. I changed my thinking tonight.

28. The Lord knows my heart and my intent.

Selah~Day 128

My 28 Thanks:

1. It was a beautiful, stress free morning.

2. Judah was so excited to wear his new school t-shirt. I love the way he pronounces his school’s name.

3. Judah was so excited that he got to ride to school with mom-mom and his cousins. He even told me that he didn’t want me to pick him up, but rather

4. My mother-in-law took Judah to school for me, so I didn’t have to go into work super late.

5. When I pulled away from my in-laws home, Judah came running after me with open arms. I stopped the car, got out, and was greeted by one BIG hug.

6. Ethan and Evan, my nephews, had to hug me too. I love sweet, loving boys.

7. I was able to spend an entire hour brainstorming future sermon series for KidMotion.

8. I had lunch with my friend, Debby. We always have fun, interesting coversations. She makes me laugh.

9. Debby is a beautiful example of God’s handiwork. Her story makes my heart smile.

10. When I picked Judah up from school, his teachers told me that he is a kind, well-mannered boy. It is such an honor to hear good things about your child from people outside of your home.

11. I met Kristy Starling today in person. I found out she lives in my neighborhood. She is as delightful in person as she is on Twitter. I love the music her band, Warr Acres, produces for the Lord. I listen to them often on Spotify.

12. Worship Music.

13. New friendships.

14. The A/C broke in our baby room. And, it was warm. The leaders could have moved to another room, but they were concerned about upsetting the nine little ones. So, they stayed and sweat it out. I have the best, most caring nursery leaders in the world.

15. My entire team was gone from the church at 9:00 p.m. They love the new dismissal schedule.

16. My 6th grade girls are so helpful. They stepped in and help out in our exploding 3s class. They were a huge help.

17. Kids Ministry has an awesome, kind security team who makes us feel safe and cared for while ministering at church.

18. Gary resisted most of the HORRIBLE food items at the fair except for his beloved cinnamon roll. And, a sweet family bought him the cinnamon roll. Then, when they walked away they told Gary that they appreciate what he does to serve the public.

19. Firemen are well-respected and treated kindly. The public probably treats firemen the best all civil servants. It is unfortunate, but I am glad my husband is a fireman and not a police officer.

20. Gary and I are teaching Judah to respect all authority. Every time we see a police officer, we tell Judah how thankful we are for police men and that they are our friend and protect us. We also encourage Judah to say hello. I am glad that we are training our child to respect people and positions of authority.

21. Because Judah had a 3 hour nap, he was in a great mood on our way home from church.

22. When driving at night, Judah and I play a fun car game. We take turns calling out the colors of the street signs that we see lit up. He loves seeing orange lights!

23. For a late night dinner, I had home made Ezekiel bread and Trader Joes Jam. Danielle blessed me with several Trader Joes items and it is truly delicious!

24. My home alarm system is top notch!

25. My sis-in-law got a great deal on an almost brand-new SUV. It was an unexpected surprise blessing. She is excited!

26. Gary enjoyed working at the fair for 2 shifts. He made around 20 calls today. He was busy.

27. Judah, me, and Disney Jr.=late night snuggle time.

28. When I lay my head down to sleep at night, He is with me. I can sleep in sweet peace.

Selah~Day 127

My 28 Thanks:

1. I began my day with a discussion on Dr. Mark Rutland’s book, ReLaunch.

2. Dr. Mark Rutland’s wisdom.

3. Everyone has vision inside them.

4. Several of us went to a memorial service for a precious woman of God. She lived her life sold out to the Lord and now she is dancing on streets of gold.

5. Her service was sweet and honoring. There was more than enough great things to say about her. I want to live my life in such a way!

6. Because of Jesus, we don’t have to be afraid of death.

7. Paul’s words…To Live is Christ, but to die is Gain.

8. Pastor Travis gave me a tour of their new annex area. Super excited for them.

9. Surprise lunch with some of my teammates.

10. Pastor Ted paid for our lunch.

11. Service at chik-fil-a can’t be beat. They are a company who all understand the vision of their leader and it shows in their attitude, actions, and service.

12. My brother started his adventure in the Colorado wilderness. We always thought he would be a true Jeremiah Johnson. Excited for him to have this opportunity.

13. My sis-in-law, Madison, reported that Gatlin is loving his new daycare. I know this is a huge relief for a mom. Madison is attending nursing school full-time. I am proud of her.

14. My sister-in-law and brother-in-law offered to keep Judah this weekend, so Gary and I can have a weekend getaway.

15. My husband is so sweet. He always listens and always cares.

16. When I got home from work, Gary had made baked chicken, rice, and veggies. He also made banana, chocolate chip bread.

17. Everything tasted amazing and I didn’t have to cook.

18. Instead of cooking, I sat in a swimming pool filled with rice and played with my little love.

19. Judah loves for me to play with him.

20. Judah told me, “Mommy, I am not afraid of the mumber anymore!” Mumber=thunder!

21. Sunsets are beautiful…even in Oklahoma. We have the prettiest sky!

22. Judah loves Bible Stories.

23. Bible Stories are even better when re-told from a 3 year olds perspective.

24. The way Judah pronounces Shadrach, Meschach, and Abednego, makes me smile big.

25. There was lots of laughter in our home tonight.

26. My home is peaceful.

27. Gary prays over his family every night.

28. Rest does a body good.

Selah~Day 126

My 28 Thanks:

1. I didn’t feel good at all when I first woke up this morning. But, I was determined to get out of bed and get ready…something my mom swears by! The more I moved around, the better I felt. By the time I left for work, I was feeling much better.

2. I am glad that I am not always moved by how I feel.

3. Judah and I enjoyed a sweet conversation this morning while getting ready for our day. I put him up on the bathroom counter so I could fix his hair. While brushing his hair he said, “Mommy, are you going to come back for me today?” I looked into those beautiful, blue eyes and assured him that I would always come back for him. That little boy has my heart.

4. Judah walked into his class without crying.

5. Judah’s teachers always greet us with the sweetest smile and the warmest of voices. They have the most gentle spirit. You can feel it. I want to go into their classroom too.

6. Christian Education.

7. When I left the school, I saw Judah playing with a new little friend.

8. My mother-in-law picked up Judah for me today, so I didn’t have to leave work early.

9. Judah was able to play with his cousins for a while after school.

10. It only takes me 180 seconds to get to Judah’s school from our home.

11. I worked in overdrive this morning and got two events in progress. All you have to do is START! I am feeling accomplished tonight.

12. Pastor Marcia always helps me out and gives me advice.

13. Today, I was able to step in and help out Pastor Marcia.

14. I got to help a family today. They lost their mom on Saturday and I was able to be the shoulder to lean on as they made funeral arrangements.

15. Dustin taught me a super simple way to scan and email documents today. I love learning new and easy tricks of the trade.

16. The new kids ministry re-design sketches are AMAZING. I can’t wait for my church family to see what the future is going to look like.

17. My voice is slowly returning to normal.

18. The leftovers were as good tonight as they were fresh yesterday. And, I hate leftovers.

19. I actually enjoyed cooking yesterday.

20. My brother-in-law is in route back to the USA for two weeks R and R. I am so thankful for his service and so excited for him to see his family tomorrow.

21. Our church is blessed with awesome volunteers who want to build the Kingdom of God with us.

22. Pastor Ted purchased us all an Easy Button. I am glad that he was in a light-hearted, good mood today…especially since my fantasy team slaughtered his fantasy team…but, who is keeping score, right? I only checked the app 500,000 times! Ha Ha Ha

23. Gary was super excited that he didn’t get loaned to another fire station today. He gets to stay put at station 8.

24. Today, Pastor Marc had another door open for ministry to a Moore School football team. Favor isn’t Fair, but it is falling on Pastor Marc!

25. My mom still calls to check on me and see how I am doing.

26. Turnaround Leadership.

27. Judah fell asleep in my arms tonight.

28. Wisdom.

Selah~Day 125

Even though the weather has been absolutely dreamy this weekend, I have felt under it. Sore throat, itchy eyes, achy body, and ear aches, have put a damper on the usual energy I have for my days. But, regardless of how I feel, I choose to praise Him. He deserves to be praised just because of who He is…not for what He has done. I will praise Him through every circumstance and rejoice in my healing!

My 28 thanks:

1. I think that if I drink enough water, I will flush out all the bad germs in my body! I love water. I crave water.

2. Cough drops.

3. I had the strength to teach today in KidMotion.

4. My voice held up for the entire morning.

5. The kids continue to love Shine A Light. They rock that song! I love to watch kids worship Jesus.

6. Miss Deborah conquered a personal “stage” fear today and did the Big Idea segment.

7. A mom text me after service and said that her daughter was retelling the entire Bible story today from KidMotion. I love hearing that kids learned and loved kids church.

8. One of my leaders told me that an encouragement card I sent to her last week came at the most needed of times.

9. All of the Kidz Ministry service went well.

10. My KidMotion leaders loved small group time this morning. I love our large group/small group model. It is the way to go.

11. I love the opportunity to make one-on-one connections with our kids. Small groups give us that opportunity.

12. I love spending time with my 6th grade small group. The kids were so funny today about the shoe game I wanted them to play. Middle Schoolers are WEIRD! Ha Ha Ha

13. I made homemade chicken spaghetti.

14. I didn’t need a recipe. I used my memory, Baby!

15. Gary and Judah loved my chicken spaghetti.

16. We will have lots of yummy leftovers.

17. Mrs. Pam wanted to use Judah’s fingerprints for one of her art projects. It was so sweet of Pam to want to use Judah for her project.

18. I talked to a couple today who is interested in serving in Kidz Ministry.

19. Gary and Judah have an amazing, fun relationship. They play so well together. Gary gives Judah 100% all the time.

20. Judah was in a super funny mood today. He laughed and made us laugh all afternoon. We are thankful for laughter.

21. Gary took Judah to the store and gave me an opportunity to catch up on work in quiet.

22. Some of my family had a wonderful, relaxing time at Broken Bow this weekend. I am from a most beautiful part of the State.

23. It appears that I remain undefeated in fantasy football. Tomorrow, I will pour on the smack talk!

24. Pastor taught on Psalm 91 tonight. It has always been one of my most favorite passages.

25. I laughed a lot in church tonight. Pastor told some funny stories. It is even more fun when he is the “butt” of the jokes.

26. I don’t have to be insecure.

27. No evil shall befall me or my family.

28. No plague shall come near my dwelling.

Selah~Day 124

My 28 Thanks:

1. Judah and I spent a wonderful, quiet morning together.

2. Holly came over and transformed my house into the fall season.

3. Fall decorating is so fun.

4. I love having people in my life who can see potential in a mess.

5. My fall decorations survived a year-long life stuffed in plastic tubs.

6. Judah and I joined Gary’s family for Disney on Ice. It was my first trip to the fair since I was a little girl.

7. I stayed calm in the sea of people. This is huge for me people.

8. We found free parking.

9. Laura drove. I enjoy being chauffeured.

10. We had great center section seats.

11. Gary worked the fair on the OCFD bike team. He got to come and watch some of the show with us. It was a nice surprise.

12. The kids had a blast. I think they enjoyed the spinning light toys more than the show. But, the adults enjoyed the show. I still love Beauty and the Beast the most!

13. My husband is so sweet and handsome. I love watching him serve others in his job.

14. Gary loves to help people.

15. Zach got settled into school and got a great bed in his apartment with 4 other roommates.

16. Pastor Ted and Tami are doing well after dropping Zach off for school.

17. Excited that several of the young people I serve with have great future ministry opportunities.

18. When we came back home from the fair, Judah said, “Wow, my house looks beautiful!” It was so sweet and cute. Judah loves the fall too.

19. I love hearing about personal growth and spiritual growth in the lives of other people. Growth is the will of God.

20. God created interesting people.

21. I never smoked a cigarette in my life. I am so thankful that I do not have an addiction.

22. The weather was absolutely beautiful.

23. Judah and I chose to go home after Disney on Ice. We drove separate, so we didn’t have to stay at the fair with the rest of the State of Oklahoma!

24. Gary was able to walk us out to our car. He always makes me feel safe.

25. Jesus changed the life of woman at the well.

26. Your story is powerful-you should to tell it.

27. Judah loves to cuddle and snuggle. He is my buddy.

28. Rest.

Selah~Day 123

My 28 Thanks:

1. Fridays are my sabbatical.

2. I had a beautiful morning walk.

3. The Bible is truly food for thought.

4. When Jesus comes into your life, you change.

5. John 4–Jesus spoke so sweetly to the Woman at the Well. He treats the sinner and the saint with the same amount of love and compassion.

6. Jesus knows the depths of my heart.

7. Jesus sees your potential, not your past.

8. Zach came over for a farewell visit.

9. Judah got to ride his bike outside for a really long time. He loves playing outside and I love watching him.

10. Judah grins ear to ear when I cheer for him.

11. Judah was super obedient this morning, so we blessed him with a trip to Toys-R-Us. He wanted an etch-a-sketch.

12. Timeless toys that never fade out. I had an etch-a-sketch too.

13. The employees at 405 Imports are so fun and kind. They have the coolest furniture from India. Gary, Judah, and I love to look at the furniture.

14. Family lunch at Pei Wei.

15. We found a Spider Man costume at TJ Maxx for Judah. It was only $20.

16. We had fun doing arts and crafts on the living room floor together.

17. We took a trip down memory lane and spent time on Campus Corner in Norman.

18. Gary filled my car up with gas. It’s the little things that make marriage so awesome!

19. Judah gives big hugs.

20. The weather was so nice.

21. We spent more time outside than inside today.

22. Judah make everyone hold hands when we pray.

23. I drank a lot of water today.

24. My yard looks beautiful.

25. Gary gave me a back massage.

26. I have a special pillow that keeps my neck in perfect sleeping position. I truly can’t sleep without it.

27. Judah wants me at night.

28. Judah has a cute lisp. Eventually, it won’t be as cute, but right now, I LOVE IT!