Growth… Growth & I have a love/hate relationship.
Wait… Let me rephrase that. Growth, as amazing as it is, feels like a antagonist in my life sometimes. Do I crave it? Sure I do! I crave growth and the results that come from following through with where I’m being led to develop and mature in life. I crave the feeling of becoming a healthier vessel from the inside out!
And, over the years, I’ve read so many books… You know the ones that encourage you to “Think and Grow Rich.” The ones that encourage you to focus on self-love, manifestations and such… And while those methods for growth have worked in my life, none of them have been as powerful or as long-lasting as following the Holy Spirit and His supernatural growth track.
His system… His ways… His ability to lead me in the best direction, customized and centered around what I need to grow is the most powerful and pure thing I’ve ever encountered.
And sure… Sure it’s filled with a lot of walks through valleys and continual climbing of mountains with a lot of highs and lows… However, the greatest part… The most amazing piece about following the Holy Spirit is the relationship that’s birthed within the process of following. It’s a feeling that’s greater than any self-love or love from another because it meets me at the very core of my spirit, heart and soul. It’s God’s love. His perpetual love makes the growth process worth every inch of the journey.
And I don’t know who I’m speaking to when saying this, but God (in His very essence) is completely interested in growing with US. He needs us as much as we need Him. And if we (I’m mainly speaking to myself) can just continue to follow with a pure and steady heart… A heart that wants to be free from all of the darkness, sickness, depression, fear and anxiety we’re feeling… Then I believe He will continue to help us grow into the most beautiful trees of LIFE… Trees of LIFE firmly planted within His garden of LIFE! 🌱 #cultivatelife #keepmovingforward
“But the disappointment God… It’s SO heavy. I don’t want to feel it anymore. I don’t want to carry it anymore. Plus… Paired with the anger… The anger that’s still consuming 10% of my heart… Well the anger really makes the disappointment feel all consuming at times.”
This is me. This is me working through more brokenness with God. And… Well… You’d think, at this point, my healing would be complete in this area. But… it’s just SO deep. All of it. The brokenness touches every layer of my essence… From my human spirit, to my soul and then impacts my body in ways that it shouldn’t.
And I’ve forgiven. I’ve forgiven and chosen to move past a lot of the pain and heartache. But sometimes… Gosh sometimes I feel like the disappointment will never go away. And then I can’t seem to quite understand “why?” Why did it have to play out like this?
Actually… I’m not stupid. I understand “why,” but then I’d rather live in the deception of the past. The deception and manipulation was just so fanatical and illusive… Almost like I was living in a dream I’d never wake up from and have to take responsibility for.
But… Then… Well, I woke up from that dream several years ago and was forced to enter a world of truth and disappointment. And, some days (though they are few and far between) I still feel like I’m still waking up to an undiscovered layer of truth and disappointment.
So… what am I to do with layers upon layers of continued disappointment? Well that’s what I’ve been asking God.
And… Do you know what He keeps showing me?
Of course, it’s been way too simple for me to process at once. But everyday I hear Him say, “My love for you woke you up from the fanatical, illusive dream. My love for you drove out the lies, deception and manipulation you both created. My love protected you. It empowered you. It’s given you the ability to constantly move forward, one whole and complete step at a time. And maybe you still feel angry and disappointed. I don’t blame you. The deception was deep; however, keep focusing on My love. Keep your eyes anchored to My heart. For inside of it you will discover the healing your heart is seeking.” 🌱 #cultivatelife
I’ve had this awkward sensation in my left side for about 4 months now. At first it concerned me because it was so strange, but then I heard Holy Spirit say, “It’s supernatural.”
So, I’ve gone on with life… Knowing that He’ll make sense of it all in His timing.
Well a few nights ago I let go of this desire I had inside of me… It was this desire my heart had to belong. But it’s wasn’t a healthy kind of belonging. It was a twisted, territorial desire to belong to man-made love. Man-made love that is sick and polluted with insecurity, jealousy and envy and all that’s foundationally wrong in this fallen world.
So I let go of it.
And when I did, the sensation in my side stopped in its tracks. It completely halted. And I haven’t felt it since.
And then… Then I felt this love… This love from the heart of God. A part of His love I’ve never truly felt before. And it was the most incredible sense of belonging I’ve ever felt. And it wasn’t something structured from self-love or man-made love. It was something much higher… Something so rare and pure, yet so innately humble. A form of love that comes from realizing that there’s something much grander than me… And this grander being is obsessed with every piece and part of me. And it gave me this confidence… This confidence to fully step forward into my destiny that’s unfolding in front of me right now.
And I don’t know… I don’t know if you know Father God’s love. But I do hope, I hope that you fully step forward in faith into it. Because His love is so deep… It’s so concrete… It’s so wild and mysterious. It’s something far greater than we could ever give to one another because it has this insane ability to heal every part of the heart that sickness and disease has cultivated inside of us. And it’s available. It’s readily available to every single person on this planet. And it grows… When it’s cultivated properly, it will grow into the most beautiful thing you and I will ever truly experience 🌱♥️ #cultivatelife #justlive
What’s real? What’s true? What’s eternally lovely and ever-growing? That… That is love.
However… It’s not human love. For human love is too faulty. Too futile. It’s too fatal.
You see this love, this love is pure. This love is whole and complete because it’s structured for one place and one place only.
What’s that place you may ask? That place is the heart.
Deep beneath the surface of the skin… Beneath the layers of the ill-beaten soul lies the heart. And it… It is THE prime real estate of the spirit. A place so deep and intimate I’m convinced no man or woman can fully know it.
You see I believe our hearts are created to contain a love that’s so powerful, so magnificent, so great that we cannot help but constantly be overrun with the joy of the Lord when we are consumed with it.
For this love… His love… It brings healing. It brings peace. It brings restoration. It stops anxiety and depression and calamity of all sorts in its tracks. It can stand on every single battlefield and win the war when darkness seems to overshadow life.
It’s the love of Father God. It’s the love that Jesus walked this earth in. It’s what I feel coming off of Holy Spirit when I’m in His presence. It’s the sweetest, most beautiful thing I’ve ever known. And it’s made… It crafted for me and for YOU! ♥️🌱 #cultivatelife #cultivatelove
Have you ever loved someone so much you’d practically do anything for them…. Even when you don’t want too because the thing you’ve been asked to do requires more of you than you’d really like to give?
Actually that’s where my relationship with God constantly stands. You see it’s become this place where I listen and I follow, even when it’s NOT what I WANT TO DO.
Because I remember being 17 years old. I remember my grandmother speaking into my life. I remember her saying, “Amanda I see where you’re headed in life. I see you on a path. You will stay very close to God. Your feet will never get off of His path.”
His path to life is an interesting one though. I spend more time with Him than anyone realizes… And I feel like in this time He takes all that I am that’s ugly and makes it beautiful. He completely uproots the negative, leaving love, peace and joy inside of me. You know, enough to leak out and share with others.
And I guess I’m sharing this because I want you to know that being loyal to your relationship with God is very fruitful. Yeah, it’s a constant choice of staying true to what He’s asked… But it’s also filled with more life and love than I ever imagined I’d encounter.
So if you know Him… If you’ve spent time in His presence and can hear His voice, than please be encouraged to keep cultivating that relationship. It will produce more fruit in you than you can fathom. And He’ll most likely ask you to do things you never saw yourself doing before. 🌱 #cultivatelife #justlive
Truth be told I’m not the best at being selfless… If I hadn’t moved home 2 1/2 years ago to help my mom move forward in life, I don’t think I’d be able to be in this moment right now… A moment where I’ve been able to totally lay down everything I want in life to help manage my sister’s art as she follows her dreams in New York City.
And I know this chapter won’t last forever, but lately I’ve found myself wanting to be selfish. A moment happened the other day that forced me to say, “There’s no ‘ME’ involved anymore. Where I am is a result of following the Holy Spirit’s lead, and so a life of selflessness is what’s been cultivated in my heart.”
You see I’ve come to learn and truly believe that selflessness is the most accurate measure of loving someone. Because when we can let go and lay down all of our self to be there for another, well it kind of kills off our ego, pride, envy, jealousy, anger, bitterness and hatred. Selflessness can’t coexist with any of those things because real, true love can’t coexist with any of those things.
And I don’t know if I’m making sense… And I also don’t know what will come from my choices over the past 2 1/2 years, but I truly hope that following Him has led me into a lifestyle that makes helping others cultivate life that much simpler.
🌱 #cultivatelife #justlive
Five years ago today I watched my dad take his last breath. All in one moment the reality of death made his appearance in my life.
You see it was evidently clear that I was starring at my dad, but then at the same time I wasn’t.
Every part of him (the smile, the jokes, the instigation I couldn’t stand, the love, the brilliant gifting that made him unique)… It was gone. His essence… His soul… His spirit… The aura that filled his body was gone. And so he was gone.
And so that was the moment… The moment I realized life… Life really, truly is temporal. And our bodies…. Our bodies really are nothing more than the vessel we use to travel in while we’re here on earth.
So now you might be thinking, “Amanda, why are you sharing this?” Well… To be completely honest with you, I just really care about the health of people. Actually, let me rephrase that…. I care about the inner health of people. I care that we are alive on the inside. I care that we thrive on the inside. I care that we find grace, love, forgiveness and healing; and then that we maintain that healing long after our moment of transformation.
You see in today’s culture I believe it’s so easy to get caught up in our outer appearance, race, sexual orientation, religion and political background… But don’t forget, before any of that can matter, we are all intangible on the inside first and foremost. We’re all created with some type of God-spark that makes us eternal and immortal.
And so I guess that’s why I’m writing this…. Because I want to remind you and encourage you to look past the surface of what you can see and shift your focus to what you can spiritually feel. Because the health of that “thing” inside of you, that “thing” we all so casually overlook, is what is truly alive in life. 🌱 #cultivatelife
I promised myself I’d pursue more of God’s love … I promised myself I’d pursue more of His love so the brokenness inside of me would mend and I could be made whole.
But I haven’t known where to start.
And then He spoke to me. He spoke to me and gave me a simple solution for my healing.
He told me, “Amanda, I may be able to read your heart and mind, but what’s greater is when you choose to become vulnerable with Me– that’s a special, intimate bonding moment because then I’m not probing around like an intruder… No you’ve given Me direct access to your heart.”
And so I’ve been doing this for a few days now. I’ve really been focusing my attention on what He’s spoken. And guess what?.. I feel lighter. I feel stronger. I feel healthier in my heart than I ever have before. I also feel like the broken areas are being filled with Him and His love.
So if you feel like I’ve felt for a while now, then please know there’s a simple solution for your heart. You need to intentionally express yourself to God. Don’t just assume He knows because He’s God and He “knows the desires of your heart and your every thought.” No, go further than that. Actually lay it all out there for Him. Lay it out there for Him and watch how He responds and fixes what needs mending. ♥️🌱 #cultivatelife
It might be a simple truth… But broken things can be moved. Broken things can be shaken, tossed and turned in several different directions at once.
Which is why I believe the only way to take something broken and make it immovable and unshakable is to let God heal it. His perfect love contains the power to heal the most broken of hearts.
You see I thought my brokenness was gone. I’d given so much of it up. So much to the point that I was convinced that I was so whole in Him. But then… Then an intruder came in and shook me around a little. And, rather than staying secure in Him, I let my guard down. I let it down and discovered there was brokenness deep, deep inside of my heart. Brokenness that God’s been trying to heal.
It’s a challenge to let Him heal it though. Sometimes we can live with pain for so long… So long that we become reliant on the pain because it gives us a false sense of life and security.
But I can’t keep holding onto all of this brokenness anymore. It’s hurting me. It’s causing me to stay weak in others and the past, rather than strong in Him.
So I guess I am to pursue more love. More love than I’ve ever known. He keeps telling me to pursue love. That love will fix what hurts so badly. 🌷🌱 #cultivatelife
Unfortunately, it’s been quite a challenge to accept God’s love lately. I’ve just been so caught up in pain, anger, bitterness and sorrow. And, for a brief moment, I almost let them talk me into hardening my heart.
You see… I could feel this wave of emotion and constant thought trying to push their way into my heart so that they could completely own it. I knew the feelings and thoughts weren’t my own though. In my heart I knew they belonged to an outside threat. Something wickedly supernatural that was begging me to follow it over the love of God.
And I do suppose the pain, anger, bitterness and sorrow are a direct result of loss. Sometimes I just feel like I’ve lost so much that I focus on my losses far more than my gains. I look at the past and how painful things have been, rather than focusing my attention to the present where love is.
However, I’m happy to report that my heart hasn’t been overtaken by these dark forces. Instead, I’ve chosen to place my constant focus on forgiveness, grace and love.
And… Honestly, that route has been a challenge too because life and death keep giving me reasons to become angry, bitter and somewhat jaded. But, well I just can’t stand the feeling of their presence anymore.
You see I enjoy feeling the love of God and then giving it back to others way more than I enjoy sulking around like the plague. And so I hope, I genuinely hope the pursuit of forgiveness, grace and love I am focused towards takes me places I never imagined to go. I hope they open avenues, windows and doors I never dreamed of walking through . And… most importantly, I hope they remain my constant way of life. ♥️ #cultivatelife