A Purpose-Filled Journey

God has great plans for us. But, you probably already know that. It’s the final destination or what some of us consider to be our purpose that has many of us confused. But, I am learning that I am discovering my purpose … Continue reading

Prayers of Faith

PRAYERS

This month, my pastor is doing a series on Prayer. Since it was announced that we would be focusing on prayer during worship services and bible studies, I have been thinking a lot about prayer and what makes our prayers effective. And one thing that keeps resurfacing during my meditation time is FAITH.  That led me to wonder how a “regular prayer” is different from a prayer of faith.
Verses on which to meditate:. 
Therefore I tell you, whatever you ask for in prayer, believe that you have received it, and it will be yours. 
Mark 11: 24
Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen.
Hebrews 11:1
If you believe, you will receive whatever you ask for in prayer.
Matthew 21:22
Before I forget, if you are in the Atlanta Area and want to hear an awesome word, from an anointed man of God, I invite you to to come visit us this Sunday.  

IMG_5512.PNG

In my life, here is what I have learned about faith:
– Faith gives you supernatural confidence.
– When we take a leap of faith with God, we have everything to gain (and nothing to lose but fear.)
– Faith allows us to believe that God has a plan for our life.
– .Faith allows us to genuinely believe that ALL things work together for our good. 
– Faith allows us to be genuinely happy for the achievements of our family and friends because we know that if God is blessing them, He most certainly can and will bless us.
– Faith reassures us that in our loneliness, God is enough.
– Faith calms us despite discouragement and anxiety.
– Faith allows us to pursue our respective purposes with reckless abandon even when we can’t see where we are headed.
Additional Verses on Which to Meditate:
But let him ask in faith, with no doubting, for he who doubts is like a wave of the sea driven and tossed by the wind.
James 1:6
Without faith, it is impossible to please God.
Hebrews 11:6 (I’d really just recommend reading the entirety of Hebrews 11. It’s all about FAITH!!
Knowing what I know about faith and about prayer, here are my tips:
1) Always Pray (1 Thessalonians 5:17) – Remain in constant communion with God. 
2) Don’t Lose Heart (Luke 18:1) – Persevere; you already have the victory. 
3) Give Thanks in All Circumstances (1 Thessalonians 5:18) – Praise God for His goodness. 
I pray that your prayers shift from “regular prayers” to prayers of faith. Remember, God is not a man that He should lie, not a human being that he should change His mind. He will do just what he said!
A Prayer For You:

Dear Father, I thank you for each reader of this post. I pray that each reader will have full faith and full trust in You. I know that if we abide in you, you will abide in us. And that if you abide in us, we will fulfill our respective purposes and live blessed lives. Grant us the desire to spend time in your word and in your presence. Increase our faith so that we are comfortable coming boldly to your throne. Increase our faith such that we pray prayers of faith and know that what we ask will be done. We know that you are a God who is able to do more than we could ever ask, think or imagine. For that, we are thankful. Amen.

Peace,
Signature - Nefertara aqua
P.S. I’ve been away for so long because, well, life happens. But, in large part, because I am building a law practice. I entered private practice with my dad in January of this year. It is definitely an experience. But, I would’t trade it for anything. If you need a great lawyer or two, give us a call. If you’re in Northeast Georgia, call our Elberton Office at 706.283.9732. 

Business Card - front and back

30 Things to Do Before You Die

by Shannon Kaiser (With Commentary by Me.) 🙂

#repost

A Facebook friend and law school classmate posted this list yesterday morning. I liked most of the things listed and thought I’d share. Maybe someone will find the list helpful.

  1. Stop worrying about debt. (But, definitely seek to get out of it.)
  2. Forgive your ex[es]. (Forgiveness is for you and your sanity. It also provides a sense of closure.)
  3. Stop trying to control your outcome. (Leave that to God.)
  4. Look in the mirror and love yourself unconditionally. (This is a definite do.)
  5. Leave the job you hate [or just don’t like as much any more]. (Do this one sooner than later.)
  6. Find your purpose and live if full heartedly. (This is a cornerstone of true happiness.)
  7. Adopt a furry friend [at least once in life]. (Be it a from a rescue organization or from a breeder.)
  8. Don’t feel guilty about holiday weight gain [or weight gain that results from memorable times].
  9. Trust that everything is in the right order.
  10. Travel to the place you keep thinking about. (If you don’t, you will one day regret it.)
  11. Try something that scares you daily.
  12. Be open to change.
  13. Let go of your past.
  14. Stop trying to change people.
  15. Stop looking for [the] answer outside yourself. (You know yourself better than you realize.)
  16. Stop thinking you did something wrong. (Don’t be so critical of yourself.)
  17. Be your weird, crazy beautiful self. (One day it will pay off.)
  18. Follow your heart. (One day, this too, will pay off.)
  19. Risk everything for love. (Sounds good in practice. It also sounds scary. But, ultimately, I think it’s worth it.)
  20. Reject rejection. (Keep forging ahead.)
  21. See the world as a beautiful, safe and loving place. (Be optimistic. After all, happiness is your birthright.)
  22. See everyone as equals. (You are no better than anyone else; s/he is no better than you are.)
  23. Give up all attachments to stuff. (Easier said than done; but, the more you do it, the less tied down you will feel.)
  24. Recognize [that] the journey is the reward. (We learn so much along the way.)
  25. Stay hopeful and optimistic in difficult situations.
  26. Welcome life lessons. (It’s all in the journey. See #24.)
  27. See the opportunities in every challenge rather than give up.
  28. Live your values. (Stand on principle. Don’t go along to get along.)
  29. Inspire others by your own bigness. (It is surprising what others see in you that inspire them to see greatness in themselves.)
  30. Play with the world. (After all, the world is your oyster.)

Signature - Nefertara pink pretty

P.S. Check back in a few days for my personal commandments.

Word of the Year – 2015

Happy New Year!!! Better late than never. Right? Right! Instead of New Year’s Resolutions, I’m all about a word of the year (at least for the past 2 years). 🙂 2015 will be the third year I have chosen a word of the year. I actually chose this word before the end of 2014, but I just haven’t taken (I won’t say I haven’t had, because we all know we make time for the things we want to make time for.) the time to sit down and complete the post.

The purpose of a word of the year is to choose a word that reflects what you most want to change about yourself or a word that reflects what you want God to do in, through or with you and then concentrate on that word for the entire year.

For 2013 my word was surrender.

For 2014 my word was praise.

For 2015 my words are Discipline/Focus.

I felt that discipline and focus were so interrelated that I could not separate them. After all, you need discipline to focus on areas of your life that need attention. Therefore, I have 2 words this year.

Discipline (n): an activity, exercise or regimen that assists you in developing a skill.

Focus (v): to pay particular attention to.

My focus verse for the year is Titus 1:8 Rather, [s]he must be hospitable, a lover of good, self-controlled, upright, holy and disciplined. 

In that context, disciplined means to exhibit a controlled manner of behavior. At this point in my life, I feel that I truly need discipline so that I can focus on accomplishing my goals – deepening my walk with God, building a client base for my legal practice, launching a marketing plan for Sugarcoated and resuming my exercise regimen. All of these things are essential to my happiness and health (mental and physical).

I need to be disciplined as it relates to the way I go about accomplishing my goals. If you, like me, need the discipline to focus OR need to be disciplined as it relates to your life’s goals, here are three steps that will help you:

  1. Fix Your Focus on God
  2. Accept God’s help
  3. Adopt a Plan

In such a busy world, many of us can’t, don’t or won’t focus on God because of ringing phones, pinging text messages, meeting reminders, the requirements of personal and home life and the chirping Facebook, Instagram and Twitter notifications. These things get our attention before God.

We don’t seek and accept God’s help because we live in a world where we seek instant gratification. We try to figure things out for ourselves.

We don’t adopt plans because we fly by the seats of our pants. We’ve all heard the phrase, “When you fail to plan, you plan to fail.” We try one method for a while, then we see that someone else is going about it a different way and we decide to try their way.

We all need more focus in some area(s) of our lives. What do you need discipline to focus on? If you like me need discipline to focus, here is a prayer for you to pray.

Dear Father,

Give us a heart that surrenders to you and your will. Grant us the discipline necessary to focus on you, your purpose for our lives and our goals. Bring about focus so that we aren’t distracted by the details and busyness of our lives. In your son, Jesus’ name we pray. Amen.

Wishing you Blessings throughout the New Year,

Signature - Nefertara cursive aqua

P.S. We have lots of Valentine’s Day Items (for men AND women) available. Check out our site by clicking here.

Heart Soap - single

 

Fearless in Your Faith

faith blocks

Merry Christmas!! What better day to talk about faith than today – the day of Jesus’ birth. Mary and Joseph both had strong faith. God sent angels to prepare Mary and Joseph for Jesus’ arrival. Mary and Joseph believed what the Angels said and had faith that God would do just what he said. Earlier in history, Abraham  (Jesus’ ancestor), left everything that he had and everyone he knew (except for his wife and nephew) to obey God’s command. Out of their obedience and faith, greatness and miracles occurred.

Many of us profess to have faith in God, His will, His power and his timing. But, faith is also something that a lot of us seem to have a shortage of when things become uncertain (or so we think) or there is change in our lives.  We often give God our plan(s) and then become confused when He doesn’t lay our lives out the way we gave it to him. When the rubber meets the road, we talk to our friends about the possible outcomes of various situations. We worry. We doubt. We question whether God is going to answer our prayers and supply our needs.

In the past few days I have determined to be more fearless in my faith. Last week I gave my letter of resignation to my boss. Initially, it was a difficult decision. But, it was the right thing to do. When I first joined the office, I had a 5 year plan. I got comfortable and outstayed my 5 years by 2 years and a couple of months.  I am leaving because I have become uncomfortable. It was all God’s doing. He had to push me out of my comfortable position in order to effect change in my life. I am leaving to go into private practice with my father, something I used to talk about doing all the way through college graduation. But, I never did. A few months ago when I decided to take this huge leap, I began to have doubts and what ifs. What if I don’t make enough money? What if I don’t have enough clients? What if this?  What if that? What if, what if, what if?  But, because of my decision to be fearless in my faith, I feel better and better (read: less stressed :-)) with each passing day.

But, then I had to remind myself that God is NOT a God of what ifs. He is a God of provision (Jehovah Jireh). He is not a God of maybe. He is I Am.  He is not a God of uncertainty.  He is a God of certainty. Being fearless in your faith means you have expectant faith. Expectant faith sustains you. Expectant faith gives you peace. Expectant faith changes lives. I reminded myself that God is not a man that he should lie (Numbers 23:19). I also reminded myself that God’s word will not return void; it will accomplish that which he sends it to do (Isaiah 55:11).

Today, I encourage you to have expectant faith. Expectant faith is the best type of faith. It means that you believe that with God, all things are possible (Matthew 19:26) AND that He will give you the desires of your heart, if you delight in him (Psalm 37:4). We have to be more like Mary, Joseph and Abraham – believing that God will do just what he has promised.

I am stepping out on faith and walking deeper into my purpose. I am purposing to have Faith in God’s timing. I am purposing to have faith in God’s plan for my life. I am purposing to be fearless in my faith. I invite you to do the same.

Dear Father, thank you for going before us in every difficult situation and decision. Thank you for the ability to rely on your word during difficult times. Thank you in advance for increased faith. I pray that every act that is prompted by our faith in you brings glory to you. In Jesus’ name. Amen.

Wishing you Christmas Miracles and Blessings,

Signature - Nefertara pink pretty

God is Good for It

image

When I was a child, one of my favorite things to do was to be read to by my parents at bedtime. One of them (I can’t remember which) bought me a book entitled “A Promise is a Promise.” They used it to teach me about the importance of keeping promises. Over the course of my life, I’m sure I have broken a promise or two, as you probably have too. When someone breaks a promise it hurts. It hurts your feelings. It hurts your heart, especially if you are especially close to the promise breaker.

Often, the devil tries to test your faith, especially when a promise is broken. Someone may promise you a job or a promotion, but then they change their mind. Another person may promise to do something for or with you, but then flake. Your spouse or partner may loyalty and faithfulness, but then he or she has an emotional or physical affair. People can be fickle, especially as it relates to loyalties, affection and likes and dislikes. But, something that we can rest assured of is that God never breaks a promise. He is not fickle. We can ask him for something that His word tells us is ours (ex. the desires of our heart) and know that he will make good on that promise. The answer or response we want may not come as quickly as we like. So, we wait and we wait. Then we wait some more. Sometimes we get anxious or impatient and try to take matters into our own hands. That never works – at least not long term. No amount of planning, plotting, manipulating or scheming can ever get us (and keep us) where God’s grace and mercy can take us. He always make good on his promises. He is faithful. His word is tried and true.

If we delight in The Lord, he will give us the desires of our heart (Psalm 37:4). He is not a man that he should lie nor the son of man that he should change his mind (Numbers 23:19). If we don’t have what we want or what we feel we need. Wait on God. He is good for it. We only have to:

  • Wait Patiently
  • Wait Expectantly
  • Wait with a Heart Filled with Praise

As I was working on this post, I decided to share some tried and true verses. These verses are those that I have tried and as a result, know their promises to be true.

Malachi 3:10 (NIV) – “Bring your whole tithe into the store house, that there may be food in my house. Test me in this,” says The Lord Almighty, “and see if I will not throw open the floodgates of heaven and pour out so much blessing that there will not be room enough to store it.”
1 Corinthians 1:9 (NIV) – God will do this, for he is faithful to do what he says, …. and he has invited you into partnership with his son, Jesus Christ our Lord.
Philippians 1:6 (NIV) – Being confident of this, that he who began a good work in you will carry t on to completion until the day of Christ Jesus.
James 4:7-8 (NIV) – Submit yourselves to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you. Come near to God and he will come near to you…

I don’t know about you, but I don’t mind waiting on something when I know that with God, a promise is a promise and that he is good for it.

P.S. About the sunflower – I made sunflower centerpieces for a baby shower today, and I have become obsessed with their beauty, resilience and sturdiness. So, I thought I’d brighten your day by sharing with you.

REMINDER:
Visit our show – A Kingdom Creation – for all of your natural products and party supply needs.

Purposeful Pursuit

It has been a while. I know. But, during the brief hiatus, I have still been writing, I just haven’t been sharing. I have also been doing a lot of thinking. I have been thinking about my life and my health and how those are tied to and reflective of my relationship with God.

A few months ago, I REALLY wanted egg nog. I craved it so much that I went to 4 different stores looking for it. The only problem was that I didn’t NEED it. It is full of calories and sugar that I definitely don’t need in my life. As I was driving back home from the 4th and final store, this thought came to mind – wouldn’t it be great if we pursued God with such intentionality.

The human side of us/our flesh causes us to pursue things we want that aren’t good for us. They aren’t intrinsically bad either, but we want them before God is ready for us to have them. The human side of us causes us to be impatient – seeking immediate gratification. You see that cake – you want it. You’ll figure out how many minutes of cardio it will take to burn the cake off later. You see that purse, car or house – you want it. You’ll figure out how to actually afford it after you’ve walked out of the store, driven off the lot, or signed the mortgage paper work. You see that guy – you want him. You try to convince God of how perfect you two would be together. The Holy Spirit encourages us to draw near to God. Draw near to God and he will draw near to you (James 4:8). As we draw to God, we will learn to be more patient and more reliant upon God’s perfect timing.

Sometimes, we get so caught up trying to adhere to our plans, dreams and goals that we fail to purposefully pursue God, pray for his will and be obedient to his direction. Today, still yourself before God, pray and listen for his direction and be obedient to His will.

What’s Next
Over the next several days, I invite you to journey with me as I offer tips to use in our purposeful pursuit of God and his will for our lives.

We will look at Purposeful Pursuit of God in:
1) Our Hearts
2) Bible Study
3) Prayer
4) Everyday Life
5) Our Purpose

There will be a key verse of scripture for each post, along with a hashtag in the event you want to tweet or post a status related to the way you are purposefully pursuing God. Today’s hashtag is #purposefulpursuit.

Be blessed,

Signature - Nefertara pink pretty

P.S. Mothers’ Day is just around the corner. We have gift sets ranging in price from $15 – $50. Visit the ‘Gift Sets” section of our website – www.akingdomcreation.com – to view the options.

Welcome to March

imageWelcome to March! Today is the 1st day of National Women’s History Month. The theme for this year is “Celebrating Women of Character, Courage and Commitment.” And since National Women’s History Month is rarely acknowledged on a grand scale, I thought it would be a good idea to share scripture and biblical examples of character, courage and commitment.

CHARACTER: a set of qualities and traits that are distinctive to a person. The Proverbs 31 woman was a woman of noble character who worked hard, helped the poor and feared The Lord.  If you are praying and asking God to develop and strengthen your character, remember Romans 5:3-4. “…but we also rejoice in sufferings, because we know that suffering produces perseverance; perseverance, CHARACTER; and Character, hope.”

COURAGE: the ability to do something despite fear; the ability to confront fear, danger or uncertainty. Queen Esther and Rahab were COURAGEOUS women. Queen Esther saved her people and Rahab hid the spies Joshua sent. If you are praying for courage, memorize Deuteronomy 31:6 and 2 Timothy 1:7. “Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid or terrified because of them, for The Lord your God goes with you; he will neither leave you nor forsake you.” “God did not give us a spirit of fear but of power and love and self-control.” (2 Timothy 1:7)

COMMITMENT: dedication to a person, cause or activity. Ruth was committed to God and Naomi. If you are striving and praying to be more committed in any area of your life, make Ephesians 6:7-8 verses of focus. “Serve wholeheartedly, as if you were serving The Lord, not men, because you know The Lord will reward everyone for whatever good he does, whether he is slave or free.”

Our character dictates our thoughts and actions. We have courage to stand in the face of adversity. We are committed to glorifying God in all we do. And though we are not perfect, and we stumble from time to time, it is important that we attempt to be and do better than the day before. Each day we demonstrate our character, courage and commitment as role models, entrepreneurs, mothers, educators and leaders in our community. Our lives and work should inspire girls and women to reach their full potential. We encourage them to love and respect themselves and others. We encourage boys and men to not only love and respect themselves, but to respect, cherish and love their mothers, sisters, friends and wives. As Kingdom Chicks, we are called to be women of character, courage and commitment. 

Have a marvelous March!

Signature - Nefertara pink pretty

A Few Tidbits:
1) Be sure to check out our website – http://www.akingdomcreation.com. This weekend, in recognition of National Women’s History Month, our whipped cocoa shea body butter is 15% off (no coupon code needed).

image

2) March is National Craft Month, so I have plans to share a few new crafts with you before the month is over.

Great Work

“…I’m doing a great work. I can’t come down. Why should the work come to a standstill just so I can come down and see you?” – Nehemiah 6:3 (MSG)

My great work isn’t your great work. Your great work isn’t my great work. But both are great works. Nehemiah’s great work was rebuilding the walls of Jerusalem. Sandballat heard of the great work that Nehemiah and his men were doing and became upset. He wanted to do all he could to prevent Jerusalem from being restored. As a result, he invited Nehemiah away from the safety of the city to meet him so they could “resolve the conflict.” Sandallat’s invitations were potential distractions that would’ve caused the work to come to a standstill had Nehemiah accepted.

In our lives, our Sandballats/distractions cause breaches in our respective walls/lives that prevent our great works from being completed. The breach or the thing that could cause you to fail and your work to remain uncompleted could be hanging out, bad habits or relationships (platonic or romantic). Your great work can relate to many areas of your life.

If the great work that God has called you to do isn’t completed it could change your life. The thing is, if Nehemiah had come down, he would’ve been killed. Sanballat and his many (four) invitations were distractions. In addition to the invitations, there were also threats of invasion and other danger. But, Nehemiah and his men continued working. They watched and prayed. If Nehemiah had come down the wall probably would not have been completed, and the people of would not have had their legacy restored. Nehemiah was focused. His heart and mind were set on the great work God had called him to do. We should be the same way.

I have started saying aloud, “I am doing a great work, and I CANNOT come down.” I think about it. I say it. I mean it. I am at a point in my life where friends, fun and excursions, though important, cannot be distractions from the great work I am being called to do.

For we are God’s handiwork, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do. – Ephesians 2:10

I am doing a great work, prepared just for me, and I cannot come down. Another way to say it, You/I/We are doing great things that God called us to do, and we cannot be turned around. Right now, you may not be certain of what your great work is, but believe that everything you do works together for your good and God’s glory.

God is calling us out of our sins and away from distractions to do great things. What has God called you to do? What does your heart or gut tell you you must do? Don’t be deterred from God’s plan for your life. Don’t be distracted from the vision God gave you. Don’t ignore God’s will for your life.

Will you join me in doing great work and not losing focus or being distracted?

Peace,

Nefertara

P.S. I have added two new recipes – Almond Flour Carob Chip Cookies and Seared Ahi Tuna, plus a new craft – all-natural deodorant. Check them out, and try them out.

P.P.S. Friday is the last day to use the promo code HDew10 to receive 10% off the Honey Dew Facial Scrub, which you can purchase by clicking here.

What Every Christian Woman Wished Every Christian Man Knew

I am a Christian woman. I do not profess to speak for all Christian women, but I think what you will read below are issues of common consent among those of us women who are Christians. Men and women are different – physically, emotionally and relationally. But, it is important that we understand each other. In an effort to assist in this, I thought I’d share a few things we wish every Christian man knew.

1) We are not perfect just because we love God. Learn to accept our imperfections. We accept yours.

2) Selfishness is unattractive.

3) Apathy is extremely unattractive.

4) Ambition is sexy. Just keep that in mind.

5) Don’t be jealous of our relationships with our fathers. They set strong examples of a what a Christian man is supposed to be and do. One day, your daughter will love, respect  and admire you the same way.

6) We are not afraid of strong men. Just because we are capable (and required to before you came into our lives) doesn’t mean we want to do everything ourselves.

7) Please go easy on the alcohol.

8) Authentic Christian women are nuturers. That does not mean we are auditioning to be your wife. But, it doesn’t hurt if you take notice.

9) We are not like the other women who have hurt you in the past.

10) We live out loud. That doesn’t mean we’re uncouth, unraised or anything else that makes us bad people. It just means that we live and love on purpose.

11) Make us feel safe – emotionally and physically – and our world is your oyster.

12) You don’t have to be the preacher or a deacon, but actively pursuing God is a must!

13) We want to be included – not just in the fun, easy parts of the relationship, but the hard stuff that shows you trust us and the not so easy stuff that builds the character of the relationship.

14) Don’t gas us up – as my friend says. Do what you say. Say what you mean. It is not necessary to make promises that you can’t keep or say things simply because you think we want to hear them. Simply put, actions speak louder than words.

15) Just because we are domestic goddesses and can whip up a gourmet meal in minutes,keep the house clean and look nice, all while working full time – making it all look effortless does not mean we don’t want to feel appreciated.

16) Christian. Men. Lead. Point blank, period.

In return for understanding and realizing these things about us and our thought processes, we will do our very best 1) to show our appreciation more, 2) to make room for you to lead, 3) not to nag and 4) not to allow outsiders to influence our behavior, especially within the relationship.

What do you think of his list? Is there anything that should be added? If so, feel free to post it in the comments. And share it with your favorite Christian Man. 🙂

Peace & Blessings,

Signature - Nefertara pink pretty