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.” 🌱

faith · Fullness of Jesus · humility

Humble Faith

“Humble yourself Amanda.”

That’s what I hear God saying in this moment.

“Humble yourself so you can move forward with Me.”

And I’m not always the best at being humble. It’s honestly something I find myself making a mental note to pursue everyday.

However when I discovered the area that needed humility.. I thought, “This is strange… Strange but interesting.”

You see, my faith needs humility. My belief system and very way of taking a risk with God needs to be brought low.

Because I’m learning that I still operate off of a belief that I have to keep working really hard in my giftings in order for God to bless what He’s given me.

For some reason I don’t want to just embrace the gifts of God. I keep pushing them away with this attitude that says, “I got this God. Let me work. I’ll give you the glory and the credit, but let me work myself into the ground until I’m exhausted. But then don’t forget I deserve something in return too!!”

It’s really twisted.

And in this moment I don’t know what to do about it all. However, I’m pretty confident that the solution is Jesus. It’s simply believing that all that God has given and all that He continues to give is wrapped up in the lifestyle I pursue with Jesus. Because I don’t deserve the freedom and giftings I have, but then in the same breathe I do. I do because He made it possible for me to cultivate this lifestyle! 🌱 #cultivatelife #justlive

capacity · expansion · freedom · Fullness of Jesus · higher way · humility · kingdom · process · righteousness

Upside Down Kingdom

What happens when you realize you’re wrong? How do you move forward when you see that the picture… The truth… The reality was upside down from what you imagined it to be?

That’s where I stand… Again realizing that my ideals and opinions have been upside down in so many ways…

You see for close to three months God’s been telling me, “Let go of your opinions Amanda. Let go of them and then you will move forward with me.” Funny thing is it’s a challenge to let go of my opinions in an opinionated culture. But I’ve tried, really I have…

And then yesterday something hit me like a school bus going a million miles an hour. Because I realized that I’ve been viewing Him all wrong. You see I set out on this quest to gain a clear and pure perspective of God, but then my ideas of Him are that He’s high and I am low because He is a King on a throne in Heaven somewhere. And, using the world’s ideas of monarchy, well they are high society. So reaching the heights there kingdom is nearly impossible. However, I’m realizing that God isn’t the kind of King we see in movies and on thrones around the world. No, instead He is a King that stands at the foundation of the mountain, or the entrance of His Kingdom’s gates. He’s not on some lofty hillside making Himself incredibly difficult for us to reach.

Now, His knowledge, understanding and wisdom is definitely more sophisticated and complex, but His heart for us is simple. It’s to the point. It’s almost one dimensional in a way because it’s right in front of our face at all times. He loves us and there’s nothing less to that. There’s no judgement or hate or condemnation or spite or even confusion. He just loves and cares for the condition of our heart.

And I know in my heart there’s so much more to discover from this point! However, this is an understanding I’ve needed because the wiring in my brain was off. My opinion led me to believe I’d get to this place in following Him where I’d discover the “top.” But really, what I’ve discovered is that the “top” is relational. And that He isn’t a King waiting for me to climb high and come into His throne room… No instead He is a King that is humble enough to stand at the foundation of His kingdom and say, “I’m right here Amanda. Come as you are into my Kingdom so that we may cultivate life together .”

assignment · challenge · darkness · develop · faith · humility · seasons · surrender

Immovable Mountain?

What happens when the situation… When the problem… When the mountain wouldn’t seem to move?

How do we react when we know God is working, but we can’t seem to understand why He can’t show off and make the big problem instantly disappear?

All these years of following and He still continues to be the strangest, yet most fascinating mystery to me. I’ve never met anyone like Him, and I hope I never do.

Since the year’s started I’ve gotten pretty adjusted to living in today, without planning ahead. Each day is basically a mystery waiting to be solved. However, the sell of my family’s home still continues to baffle me. It’s still ours. We still live in it and pay for it. We are still patiently waiting for the buyer to come.

And though I’ve spent a good amount of time wrestling with God over His lack of “magic,” I’m now coming to a place where I’m actually grateful it hasn’t sold yet. Because, rather than see the mountain disappear, I’ve had to follow God up and over it. Which has been a wild adventure for my insecurities, fear and shame.

You see it’s been a steep and very challenging mountain to climb. One that has required more of me than I ever imagined I could give. And, just when I begin to think I can’t take another step forward, I look down and remember who’s holding my hand. I remember that I’m following the steps of the God that is greater than all of the problems in front of me. And though I’d like them to disappear, conquering them with His help has been so much more fun!

He’s shown me that there’s nothing to really, truly fear at all. Nothing can destroy me when He’s got my back. And I believe my time in Shreveport has become a place where I’ve had to wrestle with God over who He actually is. And as the wrestling is coming to an end, I am able to step back and realize this is the very place He’s always wanted me to be. In a place where I will not stand down because I will hold Him accountable to His words and promises as He pushes me to be the very best version of myself possible.

And I don’t know what this entire season of life is meant for in my future. I keep telling mom I don’t understand why it’s necessary to be so strong in Him and His ways. But, I do see that His lack of moving this mountain of problems is quickly becoming the greatest mountain of purpose.

humility · pride

Prideful Conditions…

You know those moments in life when you think, “Gosh I really should’ve listened to what I was told? If I had I won’t be living with this pain now.”

Yeah… That’s exactly what I’m thinking right now…

In the past 72 hours we’ve experienced freezing weather, snow and ice… Well mom has been locked inside for two days, convinced she needs to stay off the roads and out of the crazy conditions…

If you know me, then you know there’s no way I’m staying in… I have things to do… Places to go… People to see…

So for two days I went about my business, and every time I left the house mom said, “Amanda be careful out there. Black ice is dangerous.”

In my heart, I knew what she was saying was true… But in my head I kind of mocked her a little… I mean, I know she cares about my safety… But come on mom, I get it…

Well… Her first day out, she takes 10 steps walking to her car and BAM… Down on the ground she goes. Black ice.

When she finally told me the story, all I could do was laugh… I mean, after all the caution she gave me and then she slips and falls… It was hilarious…

Later that night I was leaving a house to head home… I just made a comment about how cold it was and then took a step down the stairs… Next thing I knew, BAM… I was on the ground…

All I could do in the moment was laugh… I mean, it really was funny… After all of mom’s caution, my mocking/jesting mind and then I end up on the ground…!

After I scooped myself up and got into my car to drive home I started to think… “Geeze, I wasn’t really paying attention when I walked out that front door… I should’ve looked around…” And that’s when God (He’s always on time even when I don’t want Him to be) said, “Yeah, pride Amanda. You didn’t listen to your parent and the pride in your soul got the best of you.”

As funny as the story is, He was right… The pride in me kept saying things like, “Can’t mom just let me be the 29 year old I am. I’ll be fine. I’m responsible. Why does she think I’m going to be so dangerous and careless in freezing conditions?”

Ironically… isn’t that how we are with God a lot of the time? He says, “Don’t do that. It’s dangerous in these life conditions. Be cautious. People out there are reckless because they don’t know what they are doing. I’ve brought you too far to see you caught up in pain again. Please, be safe. Stay alert and aware of your surroundings.”

But we don’t listen… The pride of our heart says, “I know what I am doing. I’ll be fine. It’s not like I am going to end up in that much trouble.” And, because we don’t listen to Him we end up like me… An icy fall and a bruised hip… Pain that wasn’t ever supposed to be in our lives is now there, and we have to wait until it heals…

disappointment · healing · humility · restore

After the Anger… 

What happens when you realize the anger you’re feeling towards God is really just your misinterpretation of Him?..

That’s where I’ve been for 3 days now… 

A place of discovery… A place of humility… A place where being teachable is necessary for moving forward…

Because there’s an area of God’s personality that I thought I knew… I was convinced I understood Him… Because this part of His personality that I know, well I’ve always known… Right?!?!

But now I’m at a place… A place that is showing me I’m wrong… Wrong because this part of God’s personality was taught to me by someone else… It wasn’t given purely through a connection to Him, but through a second hand account…

So now I am left in this middle ground area… A place where I no longer want to assume He heals and performs miracles the way I thought He did… But open to the ideas and reality that there’s so much that I don’t know… So much that He has to teach me…

And becoming teachable hasn’t always been the easiest place for my heart… My heart used to be filled with pride and argonance… Believing so strongly that I had all the answers… But God, Life and good friends have helped my heart become a breeding ground for humilty… 

And so I truly hope, in this moment, that He will guide me past the unknown and into what is true, authentic and real about His miraculous, healing power… 

But until then, I am grateful that I’m no longer angry with God… 

humility · pride

Humble Moment

IMG_0867

What makes the west coast different from the south?…. Well the fact that no one really cares about you the way they do in the south…

I’m so used to “southern hospitality”…. So accustomed to meeting people and learning about them…. It’s engrained into me to care and to want to know about others and make people feel welcome and loved….

But out here….. Out here life is so very different… Especially in L.A….. People don’t really care…. There’s too much focus on self….

And I find myself loving my southern roots that much more… I find myself appreciating the place I was raised…. It’s just so much different than this place….

And I don’t know where my life is going from this point…. From this moment….

I don’t know where this year of my life will take me….

A year ago…. Well a year ago…. I was in Dallas trying to make a business… A dream a reality…. I was sick too… Mentality sick and stressed…. Losing too much weight… Overwhelmed…. And I wanted to kill my best friend…. If he didn’t kill me first….

Dad was still alive too…. He was alive and I still had a whole, complete and functioning family….

Life’s different now… It changed shape… And it’s evolving so much… Sometimes I feel like it evolves everyday….

New thoughts… New people… New experiences…

And I’ve been encouraged to discover myself…. To truly live in this moment and break me down… To not allow myself to become distracted with the things that are around me…. But to be consumed with what’s inside of me… To really become a friend of myself…

And honestly… It’s a challenge… It’s so much easier to allow myself to remain distracted…

But… this morning I’ve allowed myself to take a solid glance at what I’m gaining in the moment…. and once again…. I feel blessed…

A long with bitterness, jealousy and judgment…. I struggle with pride…. Having this “know it all” attitude… It’s really ridiculous… And I’ve made excuses for it for years… I’ve also had friends help me dig my way out of it all and truly embrace humility…. But I know deep down that it’s still a struggle…

It used to take effort to ask questions when I didn’t know the answer…. and I used to hate being wrong… I’d always act like I had the answer or knew what someone was talking about….

Today things are a little different…. but I see this opportunity to seize humility again…. So I’m going to take it….

We hired a new nanny…. She’s from New Zealand (the country I want to travel to the most)… which is cool to begin with…. A long with being so friendly and kind…. She’s also 19… And it’s never struck me until this moment….

In moment I am trying to accommodate the mother of the children better… I am trying to meet her expectations and learn how to be better…. Which can be challenging…

And I find myself asking someone 7 years younger than me how to do my job better… because she is a better nanny than I am… She’s better with the children and they listen to her more than they listen to me….

So in this moment…. I find myself asking someone younger than me “how?”… How can I be better? How do you handle the kids? What causes them to listen to you? What does the morning routine look like to you?

And… in the midst of it all… I can see myself growing some… Or I can see that I have grown… Because I am willing to ask questions to be excellent and accomplish what’s in front of me… I am willing to go out of my way… To lower the gate of pride and embrace humility… to admit that I don’t know, so I need someone to teach be how… to teach me a better way… And in this case it’s ways and tricks I don’t know or haven’t stumbled upon…

And it’s so helpful… and I love that we can do life like this together… That others can help us in ways they don’t even realize… While she thinks she’s helping me with the children… She’s really helping me become a better, more humble version of me…. And honestly, I’m ok with that…