Confidence · Mind · Spirit · truth

The Persevered Life

Perseverance. Oh gosh, I hate perseverance. Actually, that’s not true. I hate the initial feelings of perseverance. You know… The feelings that make you think, “I’ve come so very far. I am so very weary. And… I’ve still got miles upon miles to go.”

And, if I’m completely honest, choosing to persevere can be completely overwhelming and, at times, all consuming for the heart and soul. However, I’ve learned that there is a way to successfully press through without running yourself empty while doing so. 

Perseverance takes peace. Meaning we must be in divine alignment with the Holy Spirit and His will for our lives. Our entire being: spirit, soul, heart & body, must be completely about His love, joy and peace. We must be fixated on Him satisfying our every need.

Perseverance takes patience. I know… I know… Patience is one of my least favorite things because I am a person who loves to cut corners and take things into her own hands; however, I’ve learned that a lifestyle of patience follows a lifestyle of peace. Meaning, it’s a lot simpler to get where we’re going when we have peace undergirding our ability to wait.

Perseverance takes endurance. We have to be able to get up and go!! We have to answer the call no matter the challenge at hand! And sometimes the task at hand is extremely challenging, and so we’d rather cut a corner or skip it. And other times the task is extremely weighty… Meaning we must have a great capacity to carry it. Which is why it’s so important to be prepared to get up and go at all times, in all seasons of life.

Perseverance takes focus. Listen… If we are truly living life in the will of God, then we MUST keep our eyes on the page He’s given us. And… If He’s spoken something to us, we must hold on to what He’s said and not let it out of our sight. 

You see I say all of these things in this moment because I feel somewhat weary about things I’m choosing to continue to believe for… And, I feel slightly overwhelmed about the miles upon miles that I have left before I reach my destination.

So I need… Actually I have to remind myself of these things… Of these truths. I have to speak to my heart & soul and remind them that I need to pursue peace, remain patient, endure whatever is ahead and continue to stay locked in on the plans set before me… And, even if those plans shift course, I have to remain steadfast to them.

Why? Well because when it’s all said and done it will be worth it to finish. It will be worth it to reach the destination He’s pushing me towards.🌱🛡⚔️ #cultivatelife #keepmovingforward 

Confidence · dominion · heart · power · Spirit

My Word is: Faith

Corey Rives Visual Art

For the past several days I’ve been searching for the best word to describe my experience with 2020… And as I’ve fumbled through the list in my head and heart, the one that’s continued to pop up is “faith.”

And if you’re anything like me, faith might sound so simple. However, it’s my faith and belief in God that’s helped me truly rise above all of the continued uncertainty and chaos of 2020.

And… If I’m 100% honest, I’d have to say I’ve had more peace inside of my heart this year than all years past. 

And while that may sound odd to you, it’s not for me…

Why? Well you see my very being is completely adamant about living a lifestyle of faith. And it’s not a stagnant word, lying dormant in my heart. Instead it’s a key that’s perpetual, living, active and divinely present in my daily life.

My choice to place things I can’t control in God’s hands has taken so much pressure and burden off of my own shoulders. Pressure and burden He never created me to carry… For I am not strong enough… Only He is.

And I see 2021 heading down an increasingly cataclysmic path… One where we must use the ultimate amount of faith that’s rooted deep within our spirits, hearts and souls in order to move forward.

You see I believe more things will feel out of our control than ever before; however, when we choose to constantly engage in relationship with Father God, Jesus and Holy Spirit… When we choose to activate our spirits and then live a lifestyle of constant and continual faith… Then and only then will we find ourselves in a place of peace and harmony.

And the peace… The peace will rise straight from the ashes of our deepest fears decreeing and declaring, “My God is stronger than this, and His Kingdom is more equip than all that I am facing. So I WILL march forth… I WILL place all of my worries, fears, doubts and cares on Him… And HE WILL show me how to consistently and systematically use the power, dominion and authority He has equip me with to fight forces of darkness and all that’s of evil nature.” 🌱⚔️🛡 #cultivatelife 

Spirit · truth

The Thrill of Peace

You might oppose me when saying this… But there’s something so thrilling about darkness. Yes, it’s uncomfortable and intolerable. Of course it can feel like a constant circus of chaos and a cave of deep despair. However, in the midst of the darkness, I’ve learned that it is COMPLETELY possible to be fixated on peace and immense joy.

You see I’ve learned surrendering our current darkness to God in exchange for His peace is possibly one of the most powerful things we can do.

We’re literally saying, “Hey God, I am not smart enough, wise enough or understanding enough to carry or solve what I’m experiencing… So I’m gonna give it to you. I’m gonna leave my current circumstances in Your hands. And every time I think of them, I’m going to remind myself that I’ve given You the reins to craft up a solution.”

And sure… Sure sometimes His solutions take many moments to become tangible and complete; however, His solutions always offer up abundant life, light and immense amounts of joy.

And it’s also so comforting to lean into the truth that a being far greater than us loves us, cares about us and is willing to stand up for us when life is caving in at every corner.

So, if you are or have ever experienced darkness so black that you can’t see your hand in front of your face, then be encouraged. Be encouraged because you’re not alone. Many people have walked this road before, and I’ll bet that the ones who’ve trusted in God’s ability to provide solutions have found peace and immense amounts of joy in the midst of the chaos. 🌱 #cultivatelife

Confidence · soul · Spirit · truth

And Then God Got Quiet

“And then God got quiet… And He stayed quiet… And I didn’t know what the silence was for or what would happen next.”

He’s quiet. Yeah… We’re definitely having conversations about the world and my world. But… For the most part He’s super still. He doesn’t have much to say other than, “Mirror me. Cultivate an environment of peace Amanda. Let My peace rest deep down inside of you.”

And I believe He’s looking deep into my heart more than anything right now. I believe He’s searching for the darkness that’s rooted deep down in there… He’s looking for the negativity, the gossip, the judgment, the ugliness that’s hiding in my soul.

His peace actually feels like a flashlight… One that’s probing around, demanding all darkness to filter to the surface so that it can be drawn out quickly.

And I don’t know if I’ve ever experienced THIS before… This intrusive, peaceful, deep cleaning of my soul. Usually He drags out the truth or the love to straighten me out… But this time, this time He going with the peace.

And it’s different. I don’t hate it. It’s actually a lot easier to embrace than truth and love because it’s so constant, still and eternally captivating.

And I don’t know if I’m making 100% sense. But I did want to share what’s happening inside of me right now. Because I hope you feel His peace too. I hope, in the midst of the chaos, confusion and calamity… I hope that His peace grabs a hold of your heart, filters through the nonsense and then gives you a sense of confidence to stand tall with a pure and faithful heart.

soul · Spirit · truth

Keep The Peace

Keep the peace…. Even when life’s circumstances push you to the limit, remember why you have it… Remember to stay focused on the One that can’t be shaken, moved or truly manipulated.

Keep the peace. Keep it down in you. Hold on to it tight and don’t let it go. I know things can get crazy, hazy and confusing as hell at times, but I hope and pray peace keeps you anchored, grounded and completely secure.

Oh and don’t forget…. You know… The One… The One that holds the peace. Don’t forget about Him.

Always, always, always keep your entire self: spirit, soul and body focused on Him.

You know I never understood that when I was younger… I never understood how my mother, mentors and grandmothers seemed so sure of God. But now… Now that I have a more developed relationship with Father God, Jesus and Holy Spirit I more so get it. I get what it means to feel fear and choose peace. I see why it’s vital to trust the words of Holy Spirit over what millions upon billions of restless, insecure sources spew out.

And I know our world (and maybe even your own personal world) seems to be spinning into a chaotic mess… A mess that we cannot afford to control… But… Well… Keep the peace 🌱#cultivatelife

soul · Spirit · truth

Come Up Here

”Gosh… It’s so beautiful up here. Up here above the chaos below.” That’s what I said to God as I peered out the window from the airplane. It was flying high above what looked like Heaven below.

And He’s been saying, “Come higher with Me.” And I’ve been arguing back, “No. No. NO! Because I don’t know what’s up there. And I have to let go of SO much more of what I want in life. This isn’t fair!”

God’s will… His view of what my life should continue to look like… It’s so freaking complex and misunderstood by my human mind. And… Honestly, it really takes me living through my spirit, rather than my soul and mind to continue to follow Holy Spirit where He’s leading.

But, through the deep struggle in my soul, I push through and relentlessly follow.

And now… Now I can begin to see what He’s been talking about… The reasons why He’s been asking me to, “come higher” and “cultivate life from a state of Heaven.”

And I know it sounds a little strange, but this place we just climbed to has more peace than I ever fathomed could be cultivated within myself. It’s just this constant, weightless feeling that I can’t describe with any single word but “Heavenly.”

Nothing really bothers me up here. My eyes are focused on Him and His will and I’m not overtaken with fear, stress, anxiety and worry. It’s just so still… Even though I have no clue what “next” is.

And I don’t know if this is where you are today. I don’t know what your relationship and path with God look like; however, I just want to speak from a place of encouragement and experience when saying this… Keep following Him. I know He’s frustrating and sees things in such a different WAY than we do, but when we truly trust and follow through wholeheartedly, I believe the destination is so incredibly rewarding. And no, no it doesn’t ever consist of a destination of power, fame or fortune. But it does consist of what we need for basic living… Which are the tools to continue to LIVE and cultivate a healthy lifestyle with Him 🌱 #cultivatelife

Confidence · Spirit · truth

Sharp Objects

I had a dream about a month ago… I was standing in my living room and from the kitchen a dark figure was standing at my counter throwing knives, swords and other sharp objects at me. In the moment I didn’t know what to do…. So I reached my hand out and surprising caught each one of them by the handle on the other end.

I had a vision this morning… I saw glass and shards of metal coming at my heart… Trying to really penetrate and tear apart this whole and complete substance God’s placed inside of me.

When the vision began, I immediately thought of the dream… So I asked Holy Spirit about both of them. He said, “Amanda, the dream was a foretelling of you handling the shards and metal in the vision. For too many years you’ve allowed manipulation, deception, fear, lies and toxic behavior to tear you down and penetrate your heart. But that’s over now. Now it’s time to stand firm and confidently and courageously catch every sharp tool darkness throws your way. It’s time to be the fortress, in this area of your life, I’ve created you to be.”

And with that… Well I just felt peace. Peace that showed me this chapter is coming to an end because I will no longer be stunned with pain, rejection, fear and confusion of the past.

And I don’t know why I’m sharing this… This is kind of deep and very personal to me on several levels of life. However, I do want you to know, we weren’t created to live in darkness, pain, fear and rejection. Yeah…. Sure we can become so familiar with the darkness that it seems like we should lie down and embrace it as home. But I believe what’s stronger than the darkness that incases us is the light that comes out of us when Jesus truly steps into our story, heals our pain and restores us to full capacity.

And I don’t know about you…. But who wouldn’t want that? 🌱 #cultivatelife

Spirit · truth

Isolation: The Reality

This is it. This is a cultivated life. It’s a tree, firmly planted… Growing in isolation from the rest of the forest… One that’s nurtured well, develops, matures and grows properly in due season.

Is the isolation enjoyable? Well of course. It’s nice to live in peace. Is it frustrating? Only when I allow it to be.

But I do believe living in isolation is healthy because it promotes so much time with God…. Time that would otherwise be spent distracted by the noise, nonsense, chaos and division that goes on in this world.

But can I tell you what mainly frustrates me about living in isolation? The reality… The reality that I cannot seem to escape the will of God. It’s just there. It’s constantly there looming over my head. And I know I cannot completely move forward until I follow through with the next step.

But you know… Sometimes I don’t want to take the next step because I feel like it’s leading me absolutely nowhere. It’s like I’m walking down a dark pathway that leads to a wall… And I think “Oh great… Now what?” And then the wall opens up as a passageway to the next step… But then I fear to take the step because I just don’t understand where all of the following is leading. I just can’t seem to wrap my mind around what it’s all about.

However, if I don’t… If WE don’t keep following, well then we shut Holy Spirit out. We limit Him. We place Him in a box that says, “Do not touch.” And when we do not touch the things of Him anymore we become very stagnant, much like the chaotic world around us and so disconnected from the spirit that lies deep within.

And I don’t know about you… But I’d rather live in isolation with God all the days of my life then become completely disconnected from Him and the things of Him. 🌱 #cultivatelife

Spirit · truth

Ever-Growing

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

Confidence · Mind · soul

What Gives God?

How can I confidently stand firm on God and His words and His promises when I have days like yesterday? Moments where I feel impatient and start to flip flop about the promises.

And what about the “bloom?!” God promised I’d see a bloom in my life, but now I feel like He meant the trees around me!!

What gives God? Where are your promises? What’s your delay? What’s the delay? And why do I still have to be still?

In the stillness there’s still growth though… There’s still constant and consistent movement and life.

And even though my soul flips back and forth everyday… I still have hope. I still have joy. I still believe cultivating LIFE in the Kingdom of God is the best way we can choose to live life! 🌱 #cultivatelife #justlive