White As Snow

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Whatever the enemy has thrown at you today, cast it aside, do not listen. Those sins are forgiven, they can’t hold you captive anymore. What was once stained red like crimson is now “white as snow!”

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But Grace

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So, last night about 10:00, I realized it was Friday.  That’s when I also realized I had not completed my post for this week.  Talk about a big “OOPS!”  As a blogger, I often found myself asking forgiveness from my readers when I hadn’t posted as often as I’d liked. I felt the need to explain myself. When I realized I was apologizing for “life happening,” I stopped.


And it does, doesn’t it?


Life happens.


Why do we apologize for having a rough week at work?  Why do we apologize for being sick? Why do we apologize for putting the needs of ourselves and our families before other things?  This week, between a constant headache and crazy schedule at work, I’ve felt pretty terrible. I’ve neglected my housework and my ViBella business. As you can tell, I’ve neglected my writing as well.

The important thing we must remember when “life happens” is to show grace…..grace to ourselves and to others.


The ultimate picture of grace is Jesus Christ.  When we fall, He picks us up.  When we fail, He redeems. When we hurt, He comforts. Whatever happens in life, Jesus is there for us.  How are you at showing grace?  Do you live by a NO EXCUSES motto, or do you say, “Girl, I understand!”?  My prayer for all of us is that we can let go of that Wonder Woman image we want to bear and just bear the image of grace.

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What Are You Waiting For?

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Ephesians 3:20-21 Now to him who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to his power that is at work within us, to him be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus throughout all generations, for ever and ever! Amen

What are you waiting for? Doesn’t that question stop you in your tracks? It does me. When I heard that in my spirit, I immediately took out a pen and paper and began to write. Here are a few items on my waiting list:

  • Prayer Requests for Salvation and Healing
  • Live stronger in my relationship with Christ
  • Find joy again
  • To see our Sunday School grow
  • Financial Freedom
  • To be at my goal weight
  • To go on that dream vacation with my family
  • To cultivate stronger relationships

So what does your list look like? We all have different things we are “waiting” for. But do these things cause us to live in a place of anxiety, discouragement, fear, laziness… I could go on and on with another list of reasons why these things may not have come to pass yet.

Here’s the shocking thing though, ya’ll… The Lord just revealed to me that possibly the reason a few of these things have not come to pass just might be because of ME.

Obviously, some of those prayer requests for healing, salvation, and such are all Him but these other things… I have to admit, for most of those, I have a part to play in whether I see them come to fruition or not. When Christ changed my perspective of my part in each one, the anxiety lessened, the discouragement backed away, fear disappeared as courage rose up, and laziness turned into determination.

Let’s seek the Lord’s guidance in where ‘our’ part is in each one and then leave the end result up to Him. This is what our relationship with Jesus is all about. Laying the list of burdens at His feet. Seeking His face for direction. Taking up our mats (See John 5 for more) and proceeding with that ‘thing’ He is telling us to do next. Now that I know the part I play in all of this, the next step is obedience.

Let me ask you one more time.. What are you waiting for?

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I am totally a morning person.  My favorite thing to do is make a pot of coffee, check out the sunrise, and read my Bible.

Morning is just a special time. It’s quite for the most part (I’m usually the only one up). The beauty of the sunrise amazes me.  Although the view out the back door is the same, the image is always different.

And morning reminds me of renewal.  A fresh start.

There’s so many ways to connect that thought to Christ.

Joy comes in the morning.

Morning by morning new mercies I see.

He makes all things new.

The earth is filled with His glory.

I like to think that God is a morning person too.  Its full of beauty and peace and so is He. I’m thankful for mornings, not just for my routine during this time, but for the new start.  Waking to the realization that God has blessed me with a new day, and regardless of what the day brings, He is in it. He’s ordained it.  Because I know, “This is the day that the Lord has made. I will rejoice and be glad in it.” And I can rejoice each morning because of Him.

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The Fairytale Love

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While we are in this week of Valentine’s Day, many people concentrate on the idea of a fairytale love, or lack thereof.  We work so hard to meet an idealistic, Hollywood portrayed, Disney princess kind of love story and are sorely disappointed when it doesn’t pan out even close to this picture of so called love.  Our culture especially damages a lady’s view on romance because we idolize these fantasies of Prince Charming and living happily ever after.  When reality actually sets in or the first blemish appears in our love story, we are not equipped to handle it because we refuse to believe that could be a part of love.

Love that’s not perfect….does that even exist!?  If it doesn’t, then my marriage should bow out now.  I like many of you was sucked into believing that my love story would be infamous for its powerful culmination and the perfect Prince Charming of a husband that would spend his days thinking of another romantic gesture to surprise his wife.  I find it very ironic how long I idolized the fantasy and how quickly that idea was altered.

I am not knocking love or marriage, but rather I want us to have a healthier view of a perfect love (because we can only get that from Jesus) and an imperfect marriage.  Now, I have only been married for eight years, but in that short time we have endured many trials and been exposed to our countless flaws that I feel we have a bit of a grip on God’s intention for our love story.

In a fairytale or romantic movie, the guy always says the right thing, buys the gifts, prepares an elaborate date, and swoons over the lady in his life.  These are all good things, until these acts become the focus of the definition of love and then we tirelessly lose in an effort to maintain these actions.

My husband is far from perfect (but I’d say much closer to perfection than I am).  I get so annoyed when he goes on a rampage through the house throwing things away just because he doesn’t like clutter (or keeping things for very long).  The majority of the time he chooses the negative outlook on any situation (he would call it being “realistic”) which makes me disheartened.  The way he drives like a grandpa, whether we are in a hurry or his wife is in labor, always emotes anger on my part.  We have fought over how to squeeze the toothpaste tube to parenting differences and everything in between.

However, when I think of love from my husband, I think of the nervous 19-year-old on our first date who was too worried about messing things up that he couldn’t even eat his meal.  I am reminded of a college student who would drive 2 hours at 4am on a Saturday morning to visit his girlfriend for the day before driving 2 hours home that night.  Love cleans your wife’s hair out of the shower and never even saying anything about it.  Nursing your wife back to health, working full-time, caring for a baby, and doing all the household chores; that’s love.

Having a perfect marriage, happily ever after love story doesn’t exist because we are superficial in our idea that roses and chocolates define what love really is.  So, no matter what Hollywood says or Walt Disney portrays, how well Richard Gere and Julia Roberts act, or what Nicholas Sparks writes in his next novel, a fairytale love like these do not exist.  Marriage is hard work.  Love becomes a daily choice rather than a thoughtless magical moment.  I am grateful for the love my husband shows to me in how he displays Christ’s love in our relationship.  In the season of love, look no further than Jesus’ perfect example and his unfailing love.  When a man treats you like that, a romantic movie loses its passion.

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Praise through the Pain

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The last few weeks have been hard. Like the kind of hard that leaves you unsure of what life will look like in the coming months. It’s an unsettling sitting on the edge of your seat, hands over your eyes, while looking through your fingers. Know what I mean, anyone?

It would be easier to retreat to your room, pull the covers over your head, and stay there till brighter days come. Unfortunately, we cannot do that can we? We must move forward, keep getting up out of the bed, putting one foot in front of the other.

As I was praying today, I asked the Lord, “What do I do when I feel like I am in a pit?” I began combing aimlessly through the Scriptures, my mind not focused or able to settle. Then, the Lord stopped me:

Ephesians 5:19-20 “Speaking to one another in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing and making melody in your heart to the Lord; Giving thanks always for all things unto God and the Father in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ..”

So, I started to praise the Lord for every thing I could think of. Thank You for a warm home, thank You for running water, thank You for food in my cabinets, thank You for words to thank you with, Lord!! I just started praising!

It was hard at first, but as I thanked the Lord I began to be encouraged by every Scripture I could find on praise and every song I could sing on praise. The sadness shifted and even though my circumstances did not change, my perspective did.

You may be going through a season that is painful too. It may seem like burdens are stacking on top of each other and you keep telling yourself, “Just one more thing and I am going to lose it!” Start speaking to yourself in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs. Tell yourself of the great, faithful, and mighty love of our God!

Praising through the pain,


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True Love

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Next week, dozens of roses will be delivered to women everywhere.  Expensive chocolates will be bought, and cards will be sent. Eventually, all of those things will end up in the garbage.  For some, feelings well be hurt because they didn’t get that diamond ring they were anticipating and that expensive meal they waited hours to get just wasn’t worth it.  The problem with Valentine’s Day is it focuses on “stuff” to make us feel loved.  It doesn’t focus on the One who offers real true love.


As women, we want to be loved and to know without a shadow of a doubt that we are truly loved. Unconditionally loved.  We are emotional creatures and the slightest thing will cause doubts to creep in about our lover’s intentions.  Why?  Because of our worldly desires.  Our desires should be Christ centered.

When we focus our hearts on Christ, we experience real true love.  We receive a love that is faithful. We receive a love that is unconditional.  We receive a love that will make our dreams come true.  Jesus loves us so much that He gave his life so that we can spend eternity in heaven, eternity in peace.  Why would we not accept that gift?  If you were starving would you deny the food and water placed before you?  If your house was burning, would you deny the hoses that would extinguish it? Then why would you deny Christ who offers you more than this world ever could?


This Valentine’s Day, as candies and cards are exchanged, I pray that you focus on the true love only found in Christ.  The things of this world will disappoint, but Jesus never will.

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The Flu

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Everyone’s heard about it.  Actually, almost everyone has had it.  The dreaded and dangerous flu that has been going around this season is no joke.  It is crippling even the healthy and even claiming lives. Scary is an understatement, especially for me.  With a 4-year-old and a 7 week old, I am frightened that they will contract some strand of this nasty virus and face what could be traumatizing times.  I have even gone so far as to almost become barricaded in our home with our new baby, attempting to shield her from any unwanted germs (or a wandering touch).  It’s serious, y’all.

Some may call me overprotective or even a little bit silly for keeping her in this bubble.  But I am adamant to do whatever I can to keep my girls safe and well.  My 4-year-old has even had to resort to applying a layer of vaseline on her dry, chapped hands before bed at night from washing them so much.  I know that there is only so much I can do to keep my babies safe.  I understand that even in all my attempts for them to stay well, there is still a chance sickness could find our home.  Does this however cause me to throw up my hands in defeat and give way to any and all germs because my efforts could still be thwarted?  Absolutely not.

Sin is like the flu.  It is running rampant in our world and even has crippling effects.  Sin can be dangerous, nasty, traumatizing, and could even claim lives.  But God has offered us a remedy.  A treatment for our sin sickness.  Jesus Christ came to overwhelm our sin.  His death on the cross creates the cure, but we must still remain vigilant daily to thwart the effects sin can have if we don’t try to stay away from it.  In Proverbs it says, “Give us clean hands (YES!), and give us pure hearts.”  Our hearts’ sin problem is cured when Jesus becomes our Savior.  But may we remain adamant about trying our best to have clean hands from our daily sins so the sickness does not overtake us.  Will I stumble?  Absolutely!  Does that give me a reason to throw my hands up in defeat?  Absolutely not!

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The Smile Button

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Psalm 118:14-16

The LORD is my strength and my defense; He has become my salvation. Shouts of joy and victory resound in the tents of the righteous: “The LORD’s right hand has done mighty things!” The LORD’s right hand is lifted high; the LORD’s right hand has done mighty things!

As I read these passages and I recall all the hard seasons, the Holy Spirit hits the smile button. There has never been a time that the LORD has not been my strength and defense. I thank Him as I type for His faithfulness.

Kristen Dimarco said, “If you want to experience the faithfulness of God, you have to have been in a position of where you needed God to be faithful to you.”

We may not be able to smile at the circumstance or the hurt or pain of a hard season. What we can smile about is the faithfulness of our God. That’s where the smile button is.

Maybe you’re like me and this is a really hard season. There may not be much that makes you smile right now. What I have found is that no matter the ‘thing’ or ‘circumstance’ I am learning to think on those things that are eternal and not allow my joy be present according to the situation. I used to question how Paul had learned to be content in any and every situation, it’s so hard and yet so simple. Paul knew strength and joy only comes from our Father. How do I tap into that? Through prayer and speaking God’s Holy Word over my circumstances. It’s an instant push to the smile button!



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In God We Trust

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For those of us who are military families, uncertainty is just part of life.  We often live a life of “hurry up and wait.”  Uncle Sam could knock on our doors at any time. Military families live with a lot of unknowns, yet it’s important for us not to place our faith in the government, but in Christ alone.


When my husband found out he was going to be deployed back in 2012, we began making preparations.  Then, his orders were rescinded.  Whew! He wasn’t going to be deployed…..or was he?  There was talk that he would go and talk that he would not.  I really dislike the unknown, so I made it a point to be in constant prayer, that whatever he was called to do, I would support him, and I would not stress and worry because ultimately, God was in control.


Needless to say, my husband deployed.  Throughout that time, there many unknowns.  Yet, through prayer, God sustained me during that time.  He provided for my family in so many amazing ways.

Whether you are a military family or not, life is still full of uncertainties.  It is important for us not to put our faith in government, in our financial advisors, or even in our doctors.  Our faith should be placed in Christ.  He is the one with the answers. He is the one who is unchanging.  He is the one who knows our pasts, is with us now in the present, and will remain beside us in the future.


So, Sister, I pray that whatever you are going through, that you will place your faith in Christ.  Trust Him to care for you and provide for you.  He will stand with you on the mountaintops and walk with you through the valleys.  Why? Because He is faithful and true.

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