30 Day Cleanse Recap!!

lightstock_366519_download_medium_moriah_faithAlrighty,¬†folks! It’s time for the big “I’m a better person now and maybe next time we’ll all go vegan” post!!

So, if any of you weren’t aware, on December 23rd I challenged myself to 30 days of cleansing my life. And in case you weren’t fooled before, it was more of a “discovering my weaknesses” challenge.

I had set the ending date on the day of my SAT test (it went well, Praise God!) and included studying for that as an educational challenge in addition to the health, fitness, spiritual growth, social media fast, and general life reassessment *ahem*

My first step, as you may remember, was quitting the job that I had for the last year. Thankfully the transition to being unemployed has been amazing for my emotional well-being. Not so much for my bank account, but anyways. That post is coming later this week. ūüôā

The health and fitness part was an interesting challenge because I’m a total foodie AND stress eater. However, my love for running seems to make up for that… for the most part. My siblings and friends dragged me out nearly every day for a 4+ mile run. I was kind of a failure with the muscle fitness routine I had planned (sorry, HannahūüėĘ) but did get in quite a few workouts.

On to the social media fast. My main reason for doing this was to eliminate stress and to get back the time I would spend scrolling through other peoples business. I was about 95% succesful with that. I experienced less stress and spent more time doing things like writing, running, and talking to people in real life. The funny thing is, a LOT of people got engaged, married and had babies in those 30 days! Thanks, Facebook.

Now here’s the Jesus part! And I really hope you’re still reading. God has done some seriously cool things in my life this last month! He moved in hearts during coffee dates where acquaintances became new friends and old friends became closer friends because Jesus was there. He brought me to meeting several new people through unusual circumstances. There was even a total “God moment” where I found myself holding a friend who was bawling on my shoulder for ten minutes. A week later, she and I got to talk about how God was already using some really terrible situations in her life for good! What’s more? Over the last weeks, I’ve sensed God’s presence so much more. I’ve felt His smile in the sunshine and the rain and the sunsets that dip below the treeline. As a penpal of mine wrote me today “the difference is Jesus.” The difference is always Jesus.

So, I just wanted to give y’all a couple of examples of ways that we can tweek our daily routines to live healthier, happier lives and serve our God better! Always remember, the better YOU are doing physically/emotionally/spiritually, the more you can improve your environment and the living quality of those around you!

Is there something small that you want to challenge yourself with in this next month? Leave your thoughts in the comments!!

Blessings,

Moriah

Worship

For our challenge this week I want to address this question: What does worship look like?

The woman at the well asked Jesus a similar question; where should we worship?
His response?

Don’t worship here or there. That’s not important. But worship in spirit and truth. That is what God desires.

I wondered for the longest time, “what is this ‘spirit and truth’ He is talking about?” This last week, I think I’ve accquired a deeper understanding of what this is and what it looks like. My cross country coach talks a lot about worship, and I want to share a few things that stem from some of his recent teaching on it.

So we have to ask the big question; What does that look like in normal, everyday life? Here are a couple of ideas…

It starts with your attitude; an attitude of worship that exemplifies itself in everything we say and do.

Radiate His joy – Honestly, I’m not a pro at this. My normal thinking face appears to some people as anxious or upset. But there are ways to radiate joy that have nothing to do with that bright yellow, smiley face we all automatically think of. Walking through the grocery store a few days ago, I was struck with a thought. You remember that “love your neighbor as yourself” passage, to which the lawyer replies “who is my neighbor?”. Well, contemplating that, I wondered what difference it would make if we literally love everyone around us as ourselves. And I mean “literally” in the literal sense of the word ūüėČ This takes humility and sensitivity, but I think the closer we get to that, the brighter our light will shine. If we can just love on the people around us, value them and brighten their day a little, that is one way to worship our Creator. If putting this in action doesn’t put a smile on your face, I think you may need help.

Live like it’s your last day – …or if it helps, live like it’s your family member, friend, co-worker’s last day. You pass someone on the street. It’s their last day. What do you do? How do you treat them differently? This is similar to what we were talking about earlier, but we’re going to take it a bit further. I know several people who have gone through some very tragic losses among their loved ones. Sickness, accidents and death can be very depressing. But I think they can also serve as a “reality check” for a lot of people. A common theme that I’ve heard and seen from grieving family members and friends is this; live every day like it’s your last. Picture it in your mind. What would you say or do differently?

Words & Meditation – My older brother, seeing that I was struggling with anxiety, once challenged me to think and speak 10% of what I normally do. That’s 90% less than I’m used to, and trust me, that’s really difficult. Out of the heart, the mouth speaks, and too often for me, that had been complaining, arguing and whatnot. I was challenged to think about the words I say and the thoughts that consume me and ask myself whether or not those were of true importance. Even King David prayed “May the words of my mouth and the meditation of my heart be pleasing in your sight, O Lord, my Rock and my Redeemer.” Let us pray that prayer every day.

The act of worshiping “in Spirit and in truth” may mean different things to different people. But I see it as a fullness of Christ that is lived out in a very real way and brings glory to God.

What stands between us and a life full of worship?
What is another way that you can worship God throughout your day?
Are there steps that you can take to cut out negativity in your thought life?

Blessings,

Moriah

Don’t Question The Potter

“Woe to the one who quarrels with his Maker – an earthenware vessel among the vessels of the earth!¬†Will the clay say to the potter, ‘What are you doing?’ or the thing you are making say, ‘He has no hands’?” ¬†Isaiah 45:9

When life throws you lemons…
Do you get frustrated?¬†Do you question God, “Why would You let this happen to me?”
Here’s my question; do you really have to know why?

Imagine a potter creating something unique and special with his clay. Suddenly, the clay jumps away from him and says¬†“What are you doing with me? I don’t want you messing up my life. I want to be in control.”

A few verses down from the aforementioned scripture, God says “It is I who made the earth, and created man upon it.¬†I stretched out the heavens with My hands and I ordained their host.”

Don’t you think the Creator of the universe,¬†the One tells the sun when to rise, knows what He’s doing?

I know it’s hard to submit our will to His, to “let go and let God”.¬†But in reality, that’s what life as a child of God is all about.

Looking to God and giving up our problems, our struggles and our will.¬†Giving up all the pressure, the stress, the worries, the situations we can’t control. Just give them up.

The King of Kings says that He is our shield, our rock, our stronghold. He is everything we need if we just let him take this stress and pain.

That means waking up and letting go, because when we were in need, He provided for us. When the waves were crashing down, He cleared the storm. When we were tired He carried us through.

God gave up everything for us when He sent his only son, a part of Himself, down to this dirty earth to be killed by wicked men and to exchange our putrid sin for His righteousness.

Now all He asks is for us to leave everything that holds us back. Just follow Him and be moldable clay that He can use for His purpose.

So when life gets tough, don’t question the Potter. He knows what He’s doing.

Blessings,
Moriah

The Ultimate Relationship

For years she had struggled. After several broken relationships and many nights in tears she was about to give up. She had given her life to the Lord two summers ago but she still had this longing, this deep, intense longing for someone. Someone who would fulfill her. Someone who would be there for her emotionally. Someone who would love her unconditionally.

Then one day…she realized that that person doesn’t exist. Sorry, this isn’t a Cinderella story, it’s not a¬†fairy tale. There isn’t a prince to sweep her off her feet. This is the story of an average Christian girl, living an average life, coming to the end of fantasy and falling into reality.¬†

The truth that she discovered is that there is only One who can truly satisfy. The One who made heavens and earth, who brings rain in the Springtime and crops in the harvest, the One who gave His life for us and brought us out of bondage. He is the One we were made for. Our destiny is to be with Him.

These human relationships that we have now are temporal and can never fill the void in our hearts. Give yourself to Jesus. Let Him be the love of your life.¬†Don’t keep spending your life going in circles, wishing and waiting.¬†Your time is now, your Prince has come.¬†You have a life to live for Him, a world to tell of Him.

When your deepest passion is Christ, your value is because of His grace, your purpose is found in His will, there is meaning in living and reason to love. So let’s get our lives on track and turn our focus back toward Him.¬†

Blessings,
Moriah

Would You Deny Jesus?

Peter was a fisherman who was called to follow Jesus. He spent a good portion of his life learning from Jesus but in the end, when his life was at stake he denied Jesus and said “I do not know Him.”

Do you follow Jesus only when it’s easy? When you’re at church it’s not that hard to live like a¬†Christian. But what about when you’re with friends or¬†acquaintances¬†who are unbelievers?¬†What about when people are mocking Christianity or doing sinful things? Will you be bold about your faith even when your reputation or social status is at stake? Or will you care more about what others think of you, keep your mouth closed, stay safe and let what happens happen?

In Foxe’s Book of Martyrs, John Foxe¬†chronicles¬†many of the countless stories of Christians who stood strong in their convictions even when it
meant certain death. They would not back down because they knew that what Christ had done for them was unimaginably greater.¬†Not only did Jesus suffer physical pain, but He suffered separation from God because of our sin.¬†It’s because of His unfathomable grace that we live today, free of the guilt and sin of times past and walking each day with Him.

So why shouldn’t we be bold about our faith? God’s grace changed our lives and it can change others. Let’s be more open about what Jesus did for us and share His love with those we meet even though it’s not comfortable, safe or easy.

2 Corinthians 4:13
But having the same spirit of faith, according to what is written, “I believed, therefore I spoke,” we also believe, therefore we also speak.

Blessings,
Moriah

Joy

Joy is a thing that while utterly¬†necessary, it is greatly diminishing in our world today. Most people just go about their day minding their¬†business¬†(and other people’s), trying to finish some project or accomplish some dream, never stopping to be joyful. You don’t have to be a millionaire to have joy, and you don’t have to have a lot of “free time”.

Joy is something that you can have while you are in the middle of doing a hundred other things. But as you all know, it is hard to have joy when you are busy and when there are so many other things to focus your time and energy on. I think that joy is something you have to practice in order to be good at it. It is different than happiness in that you can be joyful even during sad times.

I know of a sweet, Christian woman whose husband died recently and left her with several young children. It was a very difficult and sad time in her life because she had lost her best friend, provider, protector and the leader of their family. This woman had always been full of joy before, but many thought that would change after her husband’s death. Not so. For this woman, joy had become second nature, it was her habit. Joy had become a part of her because of the love of Jesus so that not even the death of one so close could take it away from her.

I want to challenge you today to be joyful. So many things are going on in the world make me want to feel the opposite of joyful: angry, bitter and discontented. But we just need to realize that with Jesus in our lives, there is no reason why we shouldn’t be the happiest people in the world.

So cheer up, smile and just be thankful for everything that you have been blessed with through Jesus. You’ll give others joy too when they see it in your life.

Blessings,                                                                                                                             Moriah

The Greatest Gift

Merry CHRISTmas readers!

I would like to tell you the true story of the greatest gift that was ever given.

In the begining, there was nothing. Nothing that is, except for God. Then, God made man¬†and gave him a set of rules to live by. Man disobeyed God’s rules and sinned which made God very sad.¬†God wanted man to live with Him in heaven one day but that was impossible because man was polluted by sin and he couldn’t get rid of it.

But God loved man very much so He sent him a gift. That gift was Jesus, God’s son. Jesus lived a pure¬†and sinless life.¬†Jesus wanted man to follow¬†God and obey Him but man didn’t want to. Man’s sin nailed Jesus to a cross. Jesus took man’s sins on Him and He died.

But that’s not the end. Three days later, Jesus rose from the dead. Death couldn’t hold Him. God offered man forgiveness. He is willing to forgive even the worst sin. But there’s a catch. Man has to confess his sin and repent (turn from his ways) and accept God’s gift.

Romans 5:8 says “God demontrates His own love toward us, in that while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us.”

When Jesus left this earth, He promised man that He would return someday. Then there will be a judgement where God will seperate his followers from the rest. God’s followers will recieve eternal life in heaven. But the rest will recieve eternal punishment.

Have you accepted God’s gift?¬† If not, this Christmas is the perfect time to do it. If you have any questions, feel free to ask in the comment section.

Blessings,

Moriah