capacity · courage · cultivation · humility · keep moving forward · mature · overcome · Perseverance

The Gumption to Overcome

For the past few weeks, I’ve been thinking about the topic of overcoming. I’ve been mulling over it in my spirit and soul, aiming to connect to truth to help me move forward. After much thought and consideration, I sat down with Holy Spirit and asked Him. I said, “Will you teach me how to be better at overcoming? I am struggling in my soul with pressing past this moment of maturity.” 

Holy Spirit responded back, “Remember last Saturday when you were absolutely ready to quit? You walked around in tearful circles all day, feeling weighted down by what your soul sees and thinks, verses what your spirit sees and believes. And then, then at 10:30 pm your human spirit said, ‘No, we will keep pushing the boundaries of this soul. We will keep going because we have the capacity and the capability to keep going.’

So, you see overcoming is more for the soul, than the spirit. Human spirits (like yours) that are developing, growing and maturing with Me are actually very good at overcoming. They aren’t operating from a place of immaturity so they will eventually overcome through the strength of their maturity. They see the wealth Heaven has and they are prepared to take that next step in faith and watch the path appear. But so often here, the soul struggles. The soul gazes at the world around it and thinks, ‘I’ve come this far. I don’t want to go any further because it will be difficult.’ The soul wrestles with stepping out into faith because the soul will be required to grow more, to evolve and change. There is always much more ahead for the soul in terms of catching the new wave that’s coming from the spirit.

Overcoming is the ability to keep going, to endure, to persevere up until the last push where you move up and over that hill, mountain or obstacle in front of you. It requires a certain measure of fortitude and gumption from the spirit and the soul. They must work in tandem with each other and with the needs of Heaven. Those who overcome are like a rock that can’t be moved. They are a pillar in the kingdom that is sturdy and steady and ready for whatever might come around the corner and try to push them over. Actually, overcomers can’t be pushed over. They’ve summitted the mountain and now they have the knowledge, understanding, wisdom and revelation to go forward. 

Overcomers defy logic because they are faithful in believing in the unseen realms of life. They are truly part of My plan to move the heavens and the earth. To bring heaven into the earth realm. An overcomer is a special type of person, Amanda. Lots of people toss the word overcomer around, but they are few and far between because so much fortitude is needed to cultivate into one.” 

I asked, “What does an overcomer look like in the spirit?” He said, “Oh, they are majestic in the way that their spirit glitters and glistens. They have a stamina and aura about them that is concentrated in My glory. They know that it is because of Heaven and the faithfulness of the Lord that they’ve made it to the place of finishing… To the place of overcoming. They also speak differently than most. They have a sound that comes from their mouths that radiates the frequency of life and of courage. I see them as someone I can immensely trust with the things of My kingdom. I have a strong affiliation for them.”

Then I asked, “What level of humility is required in overcoming? I feel that it is a bedrock for the overcomer.” He said, “Good question. Very good question. Humility is such a special language of the overcomer. Knowing when and when not to speak is so vital. They must not multiply and sow seeds of slander, death, unbelief, confusion, doubt or anger.

Humility is the bedrock of the overcomer because they have the capacity to rise again the next day. They have the agility within them that says, ‘I am not there yet, but I will get there. I must just keep going.’ They are very used to failure upon failure. They are used to trying it a million and one times until they get it right. They aren’t afraid of failing or the process one takes to reach any given destination. They’ve pretty much sold out to waking up every day with the gumption to go.”

Then I left the conversation. I mediated on overcoming more and found myself thinking about my significant weight loss of 100-pounds 14 years ago. Choosing to keep moving forward was challenging for me in that season. I didn’t want to keep going. There were moments when I wanted to give up and just throw in the towel. But you know I always felt this overwhelming feeling deep down inside of me. I remember being 20-years-old, laying on the floor next to the treadmill in my parent’s house. As I laid there in pools of sweat, my soul overwhelmed with getting “there,” I felt my spirit move deep down inside of me. She believed I had what it took to keep going. So, I did.

In the midst of these thoughts, I heard Holy Spirit say, “Amanda, do you see? You can overcome your present obstacles because you have a track record with overcoming. You’ve risen above the desires of your soul and finished the race so many times. Overcoming isn’t new to you. It’s more so different now because of the expanse and growth of your spirit. Greater responsibilities are being asked of you, so your soul must expand to meet them. Your human spirit, is capable of the expanse though. It is capable of expanding far past the outer reaches of what it knows. 

Jesus was the ultimate overcomer. He not only went to the cross, but He did it after He was in the garden of Gethsemane taking on the sin, iniquity and transgression of mankind. He did that and THEN He had the gumption to go to the cross. He had the strength, capability and capacity to do an extremely challenging thing and then cross paths with the next one, which was the cross.

Which is why overcoming should be a lifestyle of the maturing child of God. It is a marker of maturity. A marker that says, ‘I am now stepping into the next thing because I am overcoming.” 🌱

courage · focus · heart · keep moving forward · process

Brave at Heart?

Life is wearisome and burdensome a lot of the time. I’ve come to believe it’s only truly embraced and fully lived by the brave at heart… Those who are constantly willing to lay down all that they have to grow, evolve and change… Those who will not sub-come to the pressures of normality, but will set the tone for new ways of a fuller life.

That’s where I constantly rest in life… Choosing to follow the Holy Spirit and pave this way so I may find more wholeness and freedom through Jesus Christ.

Am I tired of it? Yeah. Is it a constant battle and fight from within? Honestly, yes. It’s constantly a fight for me to let go of my ways of life so I can pursue God and life in a higher way.

However, if I don’t do it… If I don’t practice this lifestyle of laying down and picking up… Well how will I ever reach all that He needs me to be? How will the dreams, visions and realities of life He’s given me ever come to fruition if I don’t keep moving forward?

And I don’t know what version of God you place your faith in today. I don’t know the areas of life He has and hasn’t freed you of; however, I do believe that it’s important that we take a risk with the God that brings us every ounce of freedom and life that we deserve. I believe that it’s vital that we grow in the ways of the Spirit… Not in the ways of the church, religion, social standing or pop culture… But in the ways of the Spirit of God. 🌷🌱 #cultivatelife

courage · faith · follow · wealth & finances

Would You Risk It?

You know… As a girl raised in America I’ve had just about everything I could ever really need or ask for. I watched my parents struggle as they successfully created the business my father owned and operated. And then I sat back and wondered how we went from living in a very small house to a house bigger then we ever needed. It seemed as I got older we were just able to afford more and so we constantly did more. I mean that is the “American Dream” right?

However, when my father died life got really challenging for my family to manage. From my perspective, it seemed like God needed us to completely abandon this love, adoration and comfort we’d all attained for money and things so that we would focus on Him and Him alone.

Now I know what you’re thinking, “Oh Amanda, I know what loving money is and I don’t care for it that much.” The crazy thing is, most of us rely on and have faith in our jobs, bank accounts and savings accounts more than God.

You see I believe the majority of us live such a comfortable life. We have everything we truly need, but then we’ve bought a lie that we don’t have enough. We believe we’re doing something wrong so we consume more. It’s a constant vicious cycle that none of us are really brave enough to end because we’re all too afraid.

However, over the past five years I’ve learned (and continue to learn) that I only really need faith in God to live, survive and thrive. I don’t need all of these things society tells me I need. I am content with learning and growing and attaining spiritual wealth. I believe it’s what we’re truly designed for.

And I don’t know why I am sharing this. This area of my life is something I keep very private; however, if we really truly have faith in God… Then can we take the risk and cultivate a lifestyle based on our needs rather than our constant desire for what we want? 🌱🌷 #cultivatelife

courage · faith · fear · follow · process

Risky Business

I used to think I knew faith. I used to think it was simply believing in what I couldn’t see and the impossible.

However, over the past year of life I’ve really realized faith is a lifestyle of risks. It’s choosing to step out into uncertain, unknown and uncommon territory. It’s choosing to simply follow the Holy Spirit with boldness and a heart full of confidence and courage.

To me, that’s what Jesus meant when He said, “You only need faith as small as a mustard seed.” We only need to step out of our comfort zone and do the tiniest thing… The thing that’s different from the way we usually live life.

And it’s not always easy because taking risks asks that we literally leave our old lifestyle behind and pursue something greater and more fulfilling.

But… Well if we don’t step out… If we don’t jump off of the edge of the cliff, then why even believe in life and the divine at all? Why even consider God, Jesus and the Holy Spirit in the tiniest bit if we don’t have the courage to step forward and move with their lead? 🏔🌷 #cultivatelife

courage · Fullness of Jesus · love of god · value & worth

Worthy Queen?

Yesterday I shared about how I’ve been facing this deep feeling of unworthiness lately. Then this morning I came across the image below and thought, “Wow, this image truly captures how I feel right now.”

You see in areas of my life I can only seem to focus on the places where I don’t seem to add up and make sense. But, right now, I’m so deeply pushed by the Holy Spirit to press past this place of unworthiness. Because I believe when I get past this place I’ll realize that the things I feel about value and worth will actually help me understand a deeper level of Jesus and His love for me.

So much of the time it’s easy to get caught up in the idea that we are flawed and full of holes… But you know, if we didn’t look like the photo above then there’d be no real reason for Jesus and eternal life. Because even if the reasons I feel unworthy never go away… Well I believe He can still bring beauty and life to the places that appear to be lacking and filled with shame and unworthiness.

And I don’t know if what I’m saying makes any sense at all. I’m really just a human that feels deeply frustrated that I’ve put so much value into the way one person has viewed me in the past. And I just want to let it all go now… So that the way God and Jesus view me and see me is the only thing I hold value and worth in as I continue to cultivate life. #cultivatelife #justlive #value #worth

assignment · challenge · courage · discipline · faith · fear

Sky’s the Limit… Right?

Over the past week or so something has been troubling my heart. Nothing bad has happened, but all of a sudden I feel very distant from God…

You see for almost a decade I feel as though I’ve been climbing this very, very tall, but bumpy mountain range. Now when I began my journey I had thoughts about what life would be like when I reached the top where the sky rested. I just knew in my heart it would equate to an authentic relationship with God, something to cherish and hold close to my heart. Something that reflected closeness and reality.

And, as I’ve climbed, I’ve definitely felt close to Him. At times I’ve looked parts of the sky straight in the eye and thought, “Gosh, I’m finally here. I’ve finally cultivated a relationship with God in this area of my life.”

However, at this place in my life… Well, I’m coming to what seems to be the highest point of the range I’ve been climbing. And, for some reason… Well I don’t feel the way I thought I would.

You see instead of feeling close to God, I look out at the journey below and look up at the sky above and I realize that there’s so much about God that I don’t know at all. In a way, the sky intimidates me because I know in my heart it stretches so far upward and sideways. And all of those thoughts and feelings about reaching the top and being close to God have somewhat disappeared because I realize that I am so very distant from who He really is.

Now, in this moment, well I feel two distinct things. Half of me is in awe that there is still so much to learn about Him (I mean, I’ve been at this concentrated journey for a decade. That’s a long time). But then the other half of me feels a little lost and a little confused because I don’t know where to go from here in my relationship with Him. It’s all very puzzling to me.

And, sure eventually the Holy Spirit will point the way. But right now I can’t help but sit here amazed, yet questioning God and who He actually is.

capacity · courage · develop · faith · forerunner · process

Another Leap

Another leap of faith with God is verbally in the books… From my mouth, to His ears… I’m gonna follow what seems crazy and strange again. Because I’ve chosen to leave doubt and fear right where they’re at.

And well… This leap means so much to me on so many levels of life.

Mainly? Well mainly it means I’m choosing to trust God again in areas of my life where I’ve felt utterly disappointed.

You see, in the past I’ve found myself following the Spirit and what He’s said for my life, but then I’ve taken the fullness of what He’s said out of context. I’ve placed my guidelines around what He’s spoken. And in doing so, I’ve expected things that were not for that season of life. And… as a result, I’ve found myself hateful, angry, bitter and disappointed with God. He didn’t fulfill things the way I wanted them done or when I wanted them done.

However, experience has taught me that God never breaks His promises… And, when it’s time, He will fulfill all that He’s spoken to my heart.

So, that’s why I find myself here. I hear what He’s saying and I want to doubt because the past hasn’t happened like He said or like I envisioned, but then He’s saying, “Now. Now it is actually time for so much of what I’ve promised you years ago. So much of what you’ve hoped for and dreamed about.” Meaning, I’m choosing to let the past be the past. I’m choosing to let go of the anger, bitterness, resentment, hatefulness and disappointment towards Him. I’m choosing to simply take a leap of faith again.

And yeah, I’m aware I might get let down; however, if I don’t leap with the Spirit’s lead, I’ll never know what happens when I hit the ground.

courage · develop · expansion · grow · process · seasons · Spirit · warfare

She Swings a Sword

Have you ever willingly walked into a season of life before unaware of what’s ahead? Knowing deep in your heart it’s the best thing you can choose to do, but then also hating the fact that you have to set aside your own life?

That’s where my life has been for a year and a half… Completely glued to the reality that my family lost more than we could seemingly navigate through on our own.

And yes, I’ve complained for a good portion of this journey at home in Shreveport. I’ve been angry and frustrated with God. I’ve questioned Him up and down for His plan and way with my life.

You see, for almost 8 months now I feel like I’ve been at war with God. An inward struggle has been taking place inside of me. A real wrestling with the Almighty that’s caused me to hold Him to His words about life, truth, grace, restoration and Jesus.

It’s like He’s been standing in front of me on a training field with a sword, pushing me every way possible to learn how to fight back and defend myself with His truth in my hands.

And I’m not entirely sure what the training ground is preparing me for because I haven’t seen the battlefield He’s taking me to yet. But, I do see that the world is the darkest version of itself it’s ever been. And so I know that a great war is eminently approaching.

So, more than anything, I’m grateful that He’s pushed me past my limits. I’m cheerful for the opposition that’s taken place in my soul. And though He’s never harmed me or taken me into a truthfully harmful place, He has positioned me to become a warrior… A warrior who gracefully, yet powerfully swings a sword of life and truth in the face of fear, darkness, death and destruction.

anointing · courage · faith · family · follow · healing · listen · miracle

Walking with Healing…

The environment I grew up in was one where healing was a common thing…. Probably from the age of two, I was taught that healing is real… And that it’s meant for our world…

Because of my grandmother’s story, I was encouraged to learn all that I could from her about the power of healing…

And over the years I’ve seen lives transformed externally as well as internally…

Well… Three weeks ago I hurt my foot… Unsure of how it happened, I ran on it for 3 days anyway (I am very hardheaded)… Of course the pain was there… And it increased every time I put pressure on it… But I just kept hoping it would go away… Thinking, “oh this won’t last forever”…

By the third day, wearing heels wasn’t even an option… So I settled for sandals and went to church…

Before church even started I heard God start in on me, “Tonight Amanda. I need you to do this tonight”… And by the tone in His voice, I could already tell it wasn’t something I particularly wanted to do…

As the service went on, I knew what He needed and I argued with Him… Back and forth we went over it all… I finally came to a place in my heart and said, “Ok, God… If this is what you want, then you give me your peace and boldness to do it”…

By the end of the service, I decided, “Well, I guess I’ll do it”… So I got up, walked over to the person and spoke exactly what the Holy Spirit put on my heart for the man…

Like that it was done… No more words were spoken, just an in and out type of job…

On the walk back to the car, Bridge and I discussed how happy we were that I finally did this (God put it on my heart 9 months ago)… So I was just happy it was over…

As I sat down in the car, I stretched out my legs and realized… My foot, the pain… It was gone… I rolled my foot around, searching for pain… But nothing was there…

Just a perfectly healthy foot… That ironically was made well, 41 years to the night my grandmother went searching for an answer for my father… But then found herself miraculously healed…

Of course Bridge and I laughed about it all… Especially the irony…

But really, in truth… Well I realized so much that night…

Most importantly, somewhere in the midst of that hour and a half, I let go of a piece of myself… I set my own goals aside for a moment and just followed through with God’s… My thoughts that are always focused on my agenda were laid to the side long enough for me to actually deliver a message for God…

And, in response, my foot was healthy and whole again… Like nothing ever happened before…

And I guess this moment inspires me… Because it’s caused me to look inside of myself and wonder, “Why is my selfish agenda so important?… Why do I constantly need to fulfill what I want?… And how can I create and live a lifestyle that is about fulfilling what God needs?… Also, how can what God needs become what I need too?”…