Devotionals

  • She Could Only See the Broken Image!
    There I stood, looking in the mirror for a little more than an hour with tears running down my face. Why was the reflection in the mirror so troubling to me? Why did she cause me to loathe mostly everything about her? Why did she force me to second guess every decision I made in life? Why did she not know her worth? Why had she made so many dumb mistakes? Why did she continuously engage in self-deprecating behaviors? Why, why, why, why, why???  Pretending keeps you in a cycle of brokenness. At the age of 24, I had what most people would consider a “perfect” existence. I was married to the then love of my life; I had a job (not a very good paying one, but I loved it), we lived in one of the more affluent apartment complexes in the city, we had two cars and never went without anything. So why on earth was I standing in the mirror crying for over an hour? Simple, I did not like myself at all!!! The reflection in the mirror only made me yearn for everything that I was not. Up until this moment in the mirror, I had successfully pretended to be something I was not. I somehow managed to fabricate a confidence level that had some people believe I was well put together. When in reality, I was a hot mess!  Emotional Garbage  Before meeting my ex-husband, I had a past, and that past caused the accumulation of emotional garbage. I was not aware of this emotional garbage until I got married. Gary Thomas states in his book Sacred Marriage that, “Being married forces you to face some character issues you’d never have to face otherwise.” My first marriage exposed the character flaws I possessed and the junk that came with me.  Where had these issues arisen from in my past? As I stood in that bathroom tearing apart every God-given body part, I wept because deep down inside, I never felt loved or accepted by my father, and I never felt good enough for my mother. When I was a young girl, I would often cry in silence because I longed for the day that my dad would hug me, tell me I was pretty, spend some time with me, or even come to any of my school performances. I wanted my father to be present in my life because he lived under the same roof as me. Was that too much to ask? The feeling of not being good enough came when I was at times compared to my cousins. I know this comparison was not malicious, but it hurt nevertheless and had a lasting impact upon me. These comparisons drove me to want to study the dictionary for hours on end to be just as smart as my cousins. As a child, my mom told me to go outside to play, but I declined. In my mind, I had to write and memorize a certain amount of words and definitions in my vocabulary notebook before playing. Yes, I was that nerdy kid who studied the dictionary. I thought that if I studied more than usual, I would be good enough for my mom and that the cousin comparisons would cease. They eventually did, but the lingering effects remained.  What goes in will come out. I recall hearing a story about a coffee mug and its contents. A lady was drinking coffee, and as she held the coffee mug in her hand, someone walked by and bumped her, and her coffee spilled out. The narrator of this story used the example of the coffee to speak about emotions. She stated that whatever the contents were in that mug on that particular day, they would have spilled out. And so are the emotions we carry. If given the right trigger, whatever feelings embedded inside of us will surface and show us exactly who we are.  Year 24 was the year I got bumped, and the contents of my mug came spilling out. The years previous to that, I liken to a bowl of oatmeal that you are carefully watching as it rotates in the microwave. If you are an oatmeal person like myself, you know that if you turn your eyes away from the bowl for a second, it will bubble over, and you have a mess on your hands. My life from the age of 21-23 consisted of me carefully monitoring my emotions like that bowl of oatmeal.   The reflection that doesn’t reflect the truth Now, don’t think that I didn’t have any blow-ups emotionally, because there were plenty. I have stories for days! Some stories will have you picking your jaw up and closing your mouth. However, from 21-23, I was determined to navigate adulthood, marriage, and self-growth like a champ, so I made sure not to let the real me bubble over and create a mess. Although I never saw a happy person when I looked in the mirror, I was not about to let the outside world know that I wasn’t satisfied with my life and myself. Honey, I had to keep it together at all costs.   Comparison sucks the life out of you. This constant need to keep it together caused me to develop an unhealthy relationship with comparisonitis. I tried emulating every person I perceived as “having it together.” Emulating others seemed like a good idea, but in retrospect, it worsened my ability to see myself as anything other than broken. I was secretly competing with these individuals, and they were none the wiser.  This constant invisible competition wore me down all because I had no understanding of who I was in Christ. I didn’t know how He felt about me or how much He loved me. I could not wrap my mind around any of those thoughts because I just couldn’t. If I can be honest, I wasn’t as concerned about what He thought about me because I perceived Him as I viewed my earthly father- a big ole meanie! Because I likened God to my father, I honestly felt that God only loved me when I behaved well. My broken view of myself and God played a significant role in many of my decisions later in life.  The world was my standard. I took my cues from the world as to who and what I should be. The world became the mirror in which I looked to find my value and worth. Looking in a mirror riddled with flaws and ever-changing standards exhausted me to no end.   The world didn’t create me, so why was I taking my cues of what I should be from such a flawed place? Simple, my thinking was defective and not renewed by the Word of God. God was the only one who could show me who and what I was because He created me. But I didn’t go to Him because I felt He was very similar in character to my earthly father. So the next best thing in my eyes was the world. The world would tell me and show me tangibly how to measure my worth, even if it meant placing unrealistic expectations in my mind.   These unrealistic expectations would keep me in the chains of mental bondage for years. I kept myself in this self-imposed prison out of fear of being rejected by God; who I felt didn’t love me. It took me standing in the physical mirror in my apartment, crying for over an hour, dissecting everything about myself to be able to hear God’s thoughts about me. My broken inner man was now malleable enough for God to start the process of restoring my heart.    How often do you look in the world’s mirror and try to live up to the unrealistic beauty and success standards? How often do you find yourself feeling less than because you have not accomplished what the world says you should achieve by a certain age? My dear sister, I am here to tell you that the world’s mirror will never give you an accurate depiction of you because it did not create you, nor can it reflect your real identity. You will only find your identity in Christ. Once you begin to look in His mirror, which is the Word of God, you will know that He Brilliantly Created you like no one else.  Let’s stay connected!  SUBSCRIBE to my EMAIL LIST, so you never miss a blog post!
  • A Reconciled Heart
    Hey There! Thank you so much for stopping by my blog. It means a lot to me that you came here to sit and “chat” with me. I started this blog because I genuinely have a heart and passion for seeing women become the best versions of themselves. I love seeing my sisters happy and smiling and whole! I have learned many things on my journey and want to share some of those things with you. My life has not been perfect, and because of that, I can share with you lessons I’ve learned and how I overcame them. You are probably wondering why I titled this blog A Reconciled Heart; well, let me tell you. Reconcile means to restore friendly relations between or cause to exist in harmony. My heart was a hot mess and did not have peace for a long time, but God restored it, and I am thankful for that. I desire that through the pages of this blog, I can help someone become free from the things that have held them captive. I will not put on a fake persona behind a screen and make you believe that I have it all together because that would be a lie! And I can’t help you if I am not entirely authentic! I am still growing every day and want to continue this journey with you right beside me. I will not leave this earth and not help those God has designed for me to help, so I am putting my life out here on the table for you to see. My blog may not be for everyone, but I pray that my journey will bless those of you who are my assignment. Grab my hand, and let’s take this journey together.   Please be sure to Follow Me on IG: @a_reconciledheart Subscribe to my email list to stay updated on my latest blog posts!
  • WHO DO YOU RUN TO?

    God is our refuge and strength, a very present help in trouble. – Psalm 46:1 KJV

    In September 2018, as I scrolled through my Facebook feed, I was inundated with posts regarding Hurricane Florence. Many of the posts were requesting prayer, while other posts informed friends and family of their safety. And of course, there were posts making fun of grocery stores being emptied at alarming rates of bread, milk, and water. During times of natural storms, we as people have a tendency to run to the grocery store. We do this, to ensure that our pantries are filled with natural food to feed our bodies as we wait out the storm(s). After scrolling through my timeline I heard the voice of God ask “Where do you run when storms arise in your life?”

    Some of us run to Facebook to seek advice, some to friends or family. Some of us don’t run to anyone at all, but instead, try to figure things out on our own. Believe me, I have done all of the above!!! I am a strong-willed, self-sufficient type of girl—my daddy raised me that way— so I often try to figure things out before asking for help. But God reminds me daily that He is always present to help! He reminds me that He will never leave me nor forsake (desert or abandon) me. He will never Quit His job or Resign from His position of being God, so I need not worry during my storms! It is God’s desire that during our spiritual storms we run to Him, The Bread of Life and The Living Water!!! It is the Word of God that will be our nourishment during the storms and trials of life! Read Matthew 4:4

    Prayer:
     Lord, we thank You for always being with us and never leaving us! It is most beautiful and reassuring to know that we can call on You and run to You for everything we need!! We thank you for always being faithful to watch over us and help us during our times of need! We love You and ask that You forgive us for the times we ran to every other source before coming to You! We ask that when trials and storms arise in our lives, that you remind us by Your Spirit that you are the help we should seek and the ONLY help we need!! We thank you for hearing this prayer, in Jesus’ name, Amen!!