30 Day Fast for Me-2

30 day fast for me.

Day 2

By definition, fasting is to refrain from eating food. To abstain or deprive yourself as you become closer to God. I have heard of fasts where the person abstains from something that has a hold on them. Almost like one does during the Lenten season.  Giving up something that you have let control your time and mind. This is the type of fast I’m doing. As I’m abstaining from caffeine and fb I am able to transfer those urges or time to studying about prayer and listening to God and His plans. It is hard when normally I turn to a Coke or mindless scrolling through fb when I am stressed.  I now take that time to pray, read my selected scriptures and calm down with God’s help. It becomes a lesson on releasing my control and letting God take over.

I’m also not eating after 7. I thought this was going to be an easy one until I really looked at my habits and how even if I have had dinner earlier,  I  am ready for a snack before I go to bed. Normally it would be a half of a pb&j or chips and salsa. Salsa is healthy, right?  I wasn’t going to worry about the food aspect of a fast because I normally eat pretty good. My only hiccups are cookies and chips.  I love chips. But if they aren’t in the house or if I’m broke too cheap, I don’t buy them. If they aren’t there I don’t eat them, but if they are……… So this has also been part of my lessons. How to control my eating habits. What to eat, when to eat and what to do when those goodies are around.

10 years ago I did a similar fast when I was dealing with sexual addiction issues and my relationship with God was (in my eyes ) on shaky ground. He is always there for you but at that time I felt so removed from Him and thought that everything I had gone through removed me from His sight. At that time I read 2 books called, “Get out of that Pit” by Beth Moore and “Every Woman’s Battle” by Shannon Ethridge”. These along with my Bible and journaling helped me out of the pit I had gotten into. I also gave up Coke at that time to have something to abstain from. It was just as difficult then!! Now I’m studying a book on prayer. It’s by Priscilla Shirer, a inspirational speaker and one of the stars from the blockbuster War Room. It teaches strategies to use prayer in the battle of your life. I can’t wait to delve into it and share all that I learn.

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Vision for 2016

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My vision of 2016! Last week I attended a Vision Board Party. What’s a vision board?  It’s a large poster board with pictures and words that convey what your vision of your year or future looks like. It’s those things that you want to work on or aspire to. It’s those dreams that you have. The purpose of the vision board is to put those items on paper for you to see.  Once the thoughts and dreams get out of your head and are in front of you, then you know what you are working with and where to then go from.

My vision of 2016 is a time for a change. Isn’t that everyone’s New Year saying? But I need a change in job, health, and mindset. The purpose of my board is to constantly remind myself to do for ME. At the top/center it says “Can do energy “. I need to constantly remind myself that I Can Do, in all arenas (ministry,  writing,  marriage, motherhood). Another part of the board says”feeling good”. I want to work on feeling better, day to day. I need to do those things that will help me feel better; be it eat and drink better, move my body even though the arthritis is plaguing my joints or relax and just say no. At the left is says “turn a girls night into a girls weekend”. I have been so negligent of my female relationships. Those ladies have been with me through thick and thin. I miss the dinner club, movie nights or just chatting over a glass of wine. My marriage relationship and raising my child are both important parts of me but those connections to your “girls” are times when you can be refreshed.  I put “Get Organized” on there because the correlation  between a messy house and a cluttered mind is too great. I don’t want to write when my desk is covered with stuff and I just want to lie down when my bedroom is cluttered. Getting organized, purging and putting everything in their place will help clear my mind and help my vision take form.

I know that with Prayer and Love of myself these changes can happen and as I change other aspects of my life will come around. Especially when I have “Belief” in myself and want to ” Live my Best Life ”

A vision board does not have to be on a BOARD. It can be writing on notebook paper,  pictures, words and quotes put together in a binder or as my niece and daughter said “It’s so much easier on Pinterest.” I like the going through magazines looking for words, pictures and quotes that touch me and the method of cutting and gluing. Do what works for you.

What would be on your vision board?

Pulling back the Shades…..

The movie 50 Shades of Grey is planned to hit theaters on Valentine’s Weekend! Woo Hoo! Not. I along with some other 350 women are campaigning for folks to Pull Back the Shades on 50 Shades.

I believe this “mommy porn” or “supermarket erotica” is leading ladies and men towards a slippery slope.  Many argue that this is a “love story” and all the sex mentioned is consensual.  I take issue with both.  I don’t see it as a love story. Where is the love? The acts may have been consensual, but there are times that she does not want to participate.  In reading different articles, I noticed that the BDSM community is not even in favor of the books or the film, for the way the lifestyle is portrayed. No I haven’t read the books, so why do I care? I care because I’ve been there.

Let me clarify. I’ve been in situations that seem exciting, sexually, but have led me down a dark path that only God could get me out of.  I jeopardized my marriage and myself for pleasure sought elsewhere.  50 Shades and other erotica can open doors to various avenues of pornography, online affairs, and the like.  What I’ve learned is that God wants something different for us. He made sex for us to enjoy, especially in the confines of marriage, and wants us to have true intimacy with our partners.

This book “Pulling Back the Shades” written by Dr. Juli Slattery and Dannah Gresh, shows that we can be Sexual and Spiritual at the same time.  That those things we were taught as young people in church, those “don’t’s” shouldn’t keep us from having fulfilling sex lives.  When you expose your heart and head to those other images, it is difficult to make a true connection to someone and you have an empty feeling.

I am speaking from my viewpoint. it is strictly my opinion. I know what happened to me and would like to keep someone from making the same mistakes I did.

In response to The Daily Post’s writing prompt: “Be the Change.”

The Daily Post ‘s Prompt from Jan. 2 excited me. What change so I want to see come from my blog?

I want people to take away a sense of hope.  Like the tagline states,  “There is always a silver lining. You just have to look for it.”. Many times we let our past and present cloud how we perceive what is going on or what is going to happen. Our imagination can be our downfall aa it goes haywire! There can be a silver lining i. Thw most horrible cases, just enough for you to remember that there are forces bigger than you at work and if you stay on the side of good, blessings will come your way.

Folks should understand that the storms do not last always. That is something my Mama would tell me as a little girl. I didn’t understand then, but I do now. Life will bring storms, hurricanes and tornadoes.  Even tsunamis!  Real and figurative.  You can survive them and tell your story for those whose turn is coming.

That’s what this is about. I have had my storms and I know more are on their way but I also know that I will be able to walk away from them smiling and straightening my crown because it takes more than that to knock me down.

Continue to smile and look at the positive. God has bigger and better for you and He wants you to have it!

I’m so ashamed……

This was my New Year resolution.  Do something new, daring, out of my comfort zone. While enjoying the Blogging 101 I was suddenly stopped in my tracks by my ignorance in blogging/interweb terms. I felt all of my 44 years in not being up to date with the new things. I actually started looking for the Blogging for Dummies just to help me.

But then I gave myself a pass. So what
if I can’t embed a song or quote right now. A week ago I didn’t even know how to set up a blog! I got upset that I couldn’t keep up with a course that clearly tells you to take your time. Why are we so hard on ourselves? Haven’t I learned that whatever is for me will manifest as long as I take my time and follow it through?

So here we are again. And the thoughts are flowing like lava!!

Be blessed today!

Blogging 101- what’s up!

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Hey Bloggers! 

How is everyone doing in this cold? We’ve been assigned for #3 to connect with our neighbors.  I did it and found some great blogs, who in turn have followed me. I’m loving this sense of community and like minded spirits. So now #4. Write to your dream readers.  Well who, pray tell is that?

There ia alot to this new assignment and I am learning things in the blogiverse bit by bit. I will be writing to my dream reader soon.

Be blessed and warm!

A sliver of silver……

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Good morning!  I’m loving this class because it is getting my creative juices flowing and making me write. Don’t they say that once something is done for 21 days it becomes a habit? I hope so. That way this dream can progress to becoming a reality.

Anywho, the assignment for the day is to change the title and tagline of our blog. Right now I really like mine so I will let all know why I chose them.

Embracing Hope. We all need a little hope in our lives. With all that happens from day to day, minute to minute, even second to second, hope is what keeps us moving forward. Sometimes hope is the only thing we have to hold onto. And sometimes hope holds onto us. That’s why we can fully embrace it. Isn’t great when you embrace someone you can fully feel the hug from either side and if you happen to need more all you have to do is give a tighter squeeze?

Why don’t we look for the silver lining in things?  Why is it easier to dwell on the negative all the time? I may sound like Pollyanna but I truly believe there is something good in everything. Is there evil in this world? Definitely!  But the goodness can outweigh it and can turn it for good. Some things do happen that we cannot explain or end up opposite of what we think. Even in these instances we cannot let the negative of the situation win out. Look for that silver lining, however small it may be and you  will find the hope you need that things will get better.

Many times in my life I have had to find the silver lining. I have had to look through tears and storms.  I’ve had to look up from dark pits of despair.  But I have always found a bit of silver and embraced the hope to keep me waking up to another day. That is what I pray this blog will be about.  To share those things that have happened and let you see how hope has played a part in getting me through.

I pray that anyone reading this is able to find that sliver of silver, however small it may be, and hold onto it as a life raft to help them navigate those choppy waves.  The sea will become calm again if you are embracing hope.

I did it! Blogging101

They say you only have one chance to make a great impression but I believe that you have many. As you grow and evolve who you were in the beginning won’t always be who you end up to be. I’m Carroll Ann. A Preacher’s wife AND daughter, working mother of a teenage daughter and a proclaimed Daughter of the King (not Elvis or Mike). I am interested in all that life gives and how we respond.  I believe there is always a
silver lining.  Some may think that is naive but I live a life of being thankful for it all. Good and bad. I love to write and am jumping into the blogging world  to see if I really have what it takes. I want to share tidbits of my life and hopefully help someone through some of theirs. We are all here to help each other survive and become better versions of what you saw in that first impression.

Xo

Carroll Ann

#blogging101
#preacherwives
#silverlining