To You Before I Knew You

I’m going to share my heart about the relationship I had. I get that 90% of other normal women don’t share these thoughts publicly and I am not seeking to gain attention. I share because maybe out there reading this there’s a woman (or man) who is in similar shoes as I am and they need to identify with someone.

I’ve been doing really well in these past few weeks. I’ve healed up from the physical pain of second degree burns on my arms and legs and my heart has not had the oozing blisters that matched my legs. In fact, I’ve never been better. I’m at peace,the light has reignited in my eyes,and I feel incredibly restful. Truly this has been my experience after thinking I could never get over the anger , hurt,and embarrassment of job loss. I couldn’t fathom that the tightness in my chest would ever truly leave me room to love again,whether romantically or I’m every day relationships. There was a small point where I even wondered if my legs would lose the sting that lingered long after the wounds had healed. As if like magic my life was restored to the real Nicci. The Nicci I truly am when I’m in the center of God’s will. The Nicci who isn’t laden with anxiety and fear of the future. The Nicci that loves to laugh,enjoys all things rainbows,and who leaves people happy not burdened. That’s who I am when I’m walking with the Lord. No, none of what I just listed is Spiritual or really conveys my relationship with the Lord but it does represent the joy that is in my heart. It’s like that kids song “I’ve got the joy,joy,joy,joy down in my heart!” Truly I had forgotten what not fretting about the future felt like.

Then today something slowly crept up and I’m not sure how I feel about it yet. Out of the blue I had a strong nagging urge to write a letter to my future husband. WHAT? SERIOUSLY?!? Ok, let me stop right here and say it’s totally cool if that’s your thing but for me I’ve always thought it was really really bazaar. I dismissed the idea for a while but that same little voice that said “Nicci get your pen and paper and write to your (then) boyfriend. You have to be honest with him.” So I picked up my blue zebra pen and the closest homemade card and just started writing. *take deep breath* it was so very therapeutic. I didn’t really feel that I particularly needed it at the time. My prayer life isn’t “Lord give me a husband. Or Lord surly you could work something out with my exboyfriend and I!” In fact any time I have the slightest inclination I say “Lord take those thoughts from my heart! Father please sustain contentment in my life.” So when this almost relief type feeling washed over me as I poured out a small but lovely letter to my future husband I was shocked.

Well let’s fast forward a little bit. The day my now ex boyfriend messaged me for the first time I picked up a blank journal and wrote a prayer. Included in that prayer was “Lord take this from me if it is not your will. I don’t want to harm myself or this gentleman by causing us to not follow your will. I don’t know what you have for us but thank you for the opportunity.” I still maintain those thoughts.

Today I took my letter and went to place it in the journal that is no longer blank. It is filled with several journal entries/prayers….and the letter I wrote that day God told me that I must draw a line in the sand. My fellowship was more than where I sat on Sunday. I had made my choice.

I’ll tell you what. I could hardly look at it as that conversation started playing over and over in my head. For a split second I closed my eyes a wished I could turn back time. I could be planning a trip to be in his state. I could be loved by someone of the opposite sex. I would have the hope of having that wedding this fall and I could wear a dress made of the white eyelet that I bought on impulse. There was the desire to keep a home and please my husband. Yes,for a split second I could imagine I had made another choice. Even now as I type there is very present the yearning of lost hopes and strong desire. Something was awakened in my heart with that relationship that I had tailored away for so long because I didn’t think anyone could ever love me because of my past,my looks,or any other of those lies that Satan brings up. So I’ve loved and lost but I’ve also lived and gained!

Going through the moment of having to choose God’s will, which was my prayer from day one,and coming out the other side I know that the Lord is actively providing. Is it a husband? Well no not exactly but He’s given me a way out of the deep despair of lost hopes. He’s given that new(really an old one) prayer of contentment! I am thankful that when I pick up that journal to add a new letter,entry,or prayer yes, there might be a quick stab of what might have been but if I pick up those five pages front and back I’ll quickly be reminded why I made the choice that I did. No, not because there was anything wrong with the man I love or even myself but rather because God said “Do you trust me?” He even gave me the command to save that emotion fill letter even when I thought it was a bit extreme! He wanted me to have no doubt of His ability to provide. I have it as a reminder!

For now I rest in that provision. If it weren’t for the horrible burns I’d never would have made a choice. If it weren’t for that choice I would still be rotting in bitterness and anger! He has provided a way out of my sin! Oh what cause for joy. So dear one if you’re reading my rather dairy post of a blog know this. Whatever hard thing you’re going through you will be ok! It very well might be what God uses to move your life forward. I was blessed to have a relationship while the hard part of being fired took place.It gave me the comfort I needed and the support of prayers that carried me through the days I wasn’t sure how I’d go on. Likewise the absence of the relationship dug up and cleansed my filthiest parts and restored my soul to a place of acceptance and I gained my meness back as well! God is good! Don’t forget it it!

Much love,Pilgrim Nicci

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See That I’m a Follower of Christ by my Actions

This was written in 2016 but I just found it today.

I heard it said something like this. Don’t know I’m a Christian just because I post Bible verses that aren’t just John 3:16. See that I’m a follower of Christ by my actions.

Hopefully by my actions others can see that I’m following Christ. I get lost and take a longer way sometimes but when I catch up my Jesus is still there on the road of life. The worlds view of Christianity is that we are all striving for this euphoric place in the sky. No, the kingdom of God is within each of us. Once we accept our inheritance we then realized that kingdom living looks nothing like world living. Sure there is a Heavenly home that does await us but there is also a kingdom right here and right now! The peace that comes from knowing Jesus is right here within me. Having contentment because I am in constant communication with my God. Oh and don’t get me started on the love! Now I don’t want to paint a false picture here because I’m not perfect. The love you can have for others is overpowering! It’s true that I get so mad at people I want to punch them ( I know not a kingdom living thought) but Gods grace has countless times said to me ” Nicci you stop right now and step into their shoes.” Then you begin to love.

So friends don’t think I’m a “Christian” because I say so. Observe me ( or others claiming Christ) and see if it holds true.

Do you pray? I mean really pray? Are you constantly communicating with God? Not just at meal time or in a preset devotion. It should be as easy as if He as sitting right in front of you.

What is your language like? Do you cuss, scream, or have filthy thoughts come out of your mouth regularly?

Where do you put you glory? Do you give glory to God or do you try to bring glory to yourself? What value do you put on Money, beauty, status ?

How do you treat others? Are you willing to help someone even if it comprises yourself? Do you talk behind people’s backs? Do you even secretly hate them?

Are you submitting to your local church body or even to the laws of this country? Do you put your trust in the leadership at your church? Do you truly believe that God has placed them there?

Where does your money go? Do you think the beggar on the street is just out to get free booze? That single mom down the road from you, do you offer to bring her dinner? Or are you judging her and don’t want to condone “her sinful actions “? Do you spend your money on entertainment or fancy new gadgets but never on another?

Do you have a song in you heart?

At Odds:The Victory is Yours

Folks let’s talk about Spiritual battle real quick. It is something raging all of the time. The Spirits are at war EVERY SINGLE DAY. It’s not that all of a sudden they switch their attention to the unsuspecting Christian. There is sin,temptation , doubt, and fear around EVERY CORNER! Jesus didn’t say “Let’s go on a jolly good walk in the park to find the gold at end of the rainbow.” He said take up your cross(cause/mission) and follow me”. He says follow and we follow. That can be follow me into a sweet time of fellowship with likeminded believer or it could also mean follow me into battle against the false teachers disguised as brothers and sisters in Christ. Then He can lead us into obvious blessings that overflow and then right into blessings that don’t always immediately feel like blessings. He’s GOD and has the right to lead us,call us,and command us into whatever season He needs us in to put us in the best position for battle against the adversary! He allows the shots of fiery lies to be shot our way by Satan to strengthen us and to prove His strength. It hurts! Ouch oh it hurts! It hurts so bad that it is downright tempting to walk off the battlefield hands thrown up in surrender to the wrong king. I think there is the misguided assumption that when you become a Christian that it means a warm fuzzy life carefree from pain and suffering. Like some how Jesus acts like a bandaid from all our sorrows. WRONG! He IS our healer but healing spiritually isn’t really anything like being healed naturally. It’s far grater but so are the wounds that the healing must be delt with.

As this spiritual battle continues on and the lies of Satan are being shot with cannons at lightning speed there are some things that you can do to to bring victory in the name of Jesus Christ.

1)Make sure that you’re in the Word. Cliche as this sounds it’s really your only basis to go into battle. Without it you’re useless and might as well give up the fight. You’ll be a sitting duck and very little help to the kingdom. In fact you can bring great damage to the fight at hand.

2)Let others know that you’re facing this war. Partner in prayer with as many as you can. A war is never won alone. It takes a mighty army of people all laboring together with the indwelling of the Holy Spirit.

3)Confront every single lie head on. Is Satan telling you something about a thought someone has about you? Go ask them directly if what he is telling you is true. They’ll appreciate you coming to them. Is Satan discrediting your value? Read the Word and see what the Lord has to say about you. Are the attacks coming in the form of past sins being brought up? Recall the moment you laid them at the foot of the cross. Read what Jesus has done for you and when the Holy Spirit entered you!

4)Get sleep. This one really isn’t spiritual at all but Satan does attack when we are weak. If you’re weary and worn out physically it can be prime time for lies,nightmares,and imaginations to swell up.

Be of good cheer dear ones as we as brothers and sisters unite against the one who fell! If a Christian family member comes to you battle weary, walk along side them to lift them up to continue the good fight. Soon they will be the one to lift you when you have been wounded and the positions of battle have been changed. Go forward with the mighty armor of God knowing what Ephesians 6:12 says “For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places.” You have the power of Jesus Christ walk in all confidence as given the example in 2 Timothy 2:3-4 “thou therefore endure hardness, as a good soldier of Jesus Christ.

No man that warreth entangleth himself with the affairs of this life; that he may please him who hath chosen him to be a soldier.” We can be pleasing to the Lord by our faithful battle not with others but with Satan alone. He WILL GO DOWN!

https://m.youtube.com/watch?feature=youtu.be&v=nlpSl3yadO4

Diary post: Pep talk to the stressed mess

We get this moment only once here on earth. So often we let it go unnoticed. Maybe it’s the flowers that bloom and quickly fade away or it’s the passion of a new believer that on fire for Christ do we fully embrace the magnitude of our God in both of those moments in time or do we long for the next moment while this one phases away? Let’s stop and truly smell the flowers in an act of praise! Let’s embrace the new saint and bless them on their journey. Let’s fully live alive in the new life we have been given! We have a purpose let’s not waste it!

———/ This is totally a pep talk for myself as I’m coming out of a season of well..let’s just say it…juggling too much. It’s showing in my health big time as I realize I was just stretching myself too thin and the balls began to drop. Stress, it’s something I had heard about but didn’t really think affected me all that much. Peeps listen up, if your body,work,and whatever else is telling you to stop and live in the moment by all means DO IT! Don’t allow stress to make you something you don’t even recognize. Don’t go through the motions of life! LIVE…truly live! I knew something was off but it wasn’t until last week when essentially I was fired(contract not renewed after six years)from my long time job that I realized I didn’t even recognize myself. Honestly I was relieved,sad but relieved. Stress! I had everything to look forward to but moment by moment I wasn’t fully feeling every joy that surrounded me. In fact I was becoming numb to the things I was passionate about in life. Praise the Lord for the closed door,as sad as it is! I feel the door to life being reopened as I’m focused on one day at a time(in reality not just in the words I say). God is good and freedom to live is worth more than gold!

Take the Risk

Hi I’m Nicci and I’m in a relationship with a man I’ve never met. Is that a risk, sure. Is it worth it,100% yes!

This is a post that honestly should of been written in my diary..unfortunately I don’t have a diary so you get to read it instead.

Here’s the deal folks I’m someone who processes things by talking it out. I just want to “talk out” something. I was very happy single. In fact it took a bit for me to even wrap my mind around what God was doing in my life. I know that this thing of being in a relationship in such a unique way seems odd to my family and friends. Hey I’ll give that to you all. However thank you for those that have supported this new experience in my life. I never in a million years would of expected to A. Be in a relationship. Or B. Have it come about so radically different than the norm. I can say 100% that this has been a God thing. I have no clue what my tomorrows may hold but in this season of life I am so incredibly happy to see where the relationship that God has stitched together is with Mark and I is at. I truly am getting to experience what it is to be treated with respect,love,and kindness.

I’m all for being absolutely content where God has placed you. However don’t be afraid to take the risk of the unknown…it very well may be God answering those prayers you had laid at the foot of the cross years ago. I know if my tomorrow finds this to be all gone from me that this was worth knowing that there are good godly men out there who aren’t afraid to go for what they want. It would be sad and heartbreak would take time to get over but not because the pain wasn’t worth it. Rather because the blessing is so rich! Something I also want to encourage women of all ages is to first view your man as your brother in Christ. This will make your relationship that much more rich. Take time to get ask those hard questions and be willing to answer them yourself honestly. Get into the Word together and don’t shy away from praying for each other together and separately. It’s not a cheesy suggestion but rather something that can bloom organically as you seek the will of the Lord. Something I wouldn’t trade for the world is the fact that all Mark and I can do is communicate. This special time of just getting to know each other is more than going to get coffee or dinner. It’s an act of intentionality that has helped us get to know each other in a purposeful way.

Get yourself a Mark..just not mine.

“Cause you are sweet and I am chunky “

Snippet:A Call to be Bold

Do you ever wake with that certain kind of feeling deep in your chest? No, not a heart attack…but rather that undeniable pull away from this world and into the boundaries of the Father’s kingdom. When your eyes pop open , you’re ready for the day, but the awareness is oh so close that this is not your home. Homesickness for a place where you belong but have never seen is what propels you forward as a pilgrim desperately waiting for that time when the waiting is over. Yet strong is the desire not to walk alone. Not only do you desire to have company but so others can have the hope that is figuratively within your beating chest. So you walk out the door with a mission. “Lord show me someone’s soul…even just one soul is worth the fight”.

How is it we can be engulfed in the enormous reality of what our Lord is and what His love does yet we the church are such silent and timid characters almost acting ashamed of the promise we claim? I am speaking to you directly as well as myself. Who are the lost and what is it they they let slip away so casually? Do we truly care for them as we are deeply devoted to our God? We were asked on Saturday who of your brothers and sisters in Christ would you die for? I personally want to change that question. I ask, who of the lost souls are you willing to watch die? Are we willing to die for the life of one that is yet to be our sibling in Christ? Oh that gets a bit more difficult doesn’t it?

You see, I believe I can say fairly confidently that I would die gladly for a few things. 1) That Jesus Christ is Lord of Lords. 2) The Word of God is infallible and was inspired by God Himself. 3) That there is ONE bride of Christ that is the church. So if I (and you) have unshakable faith in those truths then I cannot wrap my mind around why we would go through this life with the yearning in our hearts for the fulfillment of His plan all the while turning a blind eye as the world and its citizens are perishing.

I was so encouraged by a woman who I would call a more quiet type come up to me with such zeal last night as she shared what she had learned about Jesus and the church . This woman is a born again sister of mine who is very intelligent YET there was a great desire to keep learning and sharing about our Jesus! I have never heard this woman speak with such awesome boldness and excitement before! Oh Lord let me be willing to do the same! Show me who is dying and let my response be appropriate!

Snippet:Don’t Be Content With Darkness

There is light and there is darkness. Contrary to popular belief you won’t find a middle ground between the two. It doesn’t matter if you went into the water and came out sopping wet. This thing called church membership and community living has absolutely no value without the Holy Spirit causing the old man to be laid off and new life to spring forward.

Which side do you find yourself on? Do you sit in darkness but look nice on the outside,content to look nice and catch a few of the church life benefits? Or rather do you live a fulfilled life in the kingdom reflecting the light,life,and love of the Lord Jesus Christ?

Do not be pleased to be hypocrites. The world will call the pretender’s bluff and rightfully so. The truth will be found and judgment will come when the bridegroom comes for His perfect bride spotless without blemish or wrinkle. He will not be content with an unlit soul insiders a dead body.