Motivational Monday: Diving Right In
Updated: Jan 21, 2020
Faith and God are a HUGE part of our daily lives in the Barnsley house. Without Him, I'm not sure I'd be here right now... I've been through a lot of trauma the last few years and He is ultimately the Healer that pulled me through all of it.. I am forever thankful and grateful to Him for His loving arms that gives me the chance every morning to fulfill my mission and purpose on this earth. He has brought joy, peace, love, forgiveness and understanding that I may not have understood if I didn't realize the ultimate sacrifice His Son Jesus paid for us. There has been no better gift received than that of Eternal life with Him...
Now, I understand some of you may not be believers or have different religious beliefs, and guess what? We can still be friends!!! Don't click the X for this page yet... Don't let this world tell you that because someone might have not come to Jesus yet, or beliefs are different that we should separate ourselves and get angry or divided over it... We for one are NOT called to judge anyone, but to love... Another reason I wanted to start this blog was to communicate that we are all looked at the same through God's eyes. No matter what differences we have, no one is better, no one is worse... He loves us all the same.. NOW THAT MY FRIENDS IS GREAT NEWS! Because we are still in January, I always love to have a couple of tools and books in my back pocket that help direct my focus for the year. Here are some of my suggestions! If you've read any or are going to read any, please comment to let other readers know what your favorites were or whether or not you liked a particular book.
I want you to know that I am not preaching, I'm not a Bible scholar, I'm no expert at all... I just want to share a few ideas and books today with you that I have found SO helpful in not only my walk with Christ, but in life, love, motherhood, friendships, everything!!!!
First of all, a friend of mine, Laura (after picking her brain about how to read the entire Bible) gave me the coolest little guide that she got off of Amazon that looks like this:
When you open it, it gives you some Old Testament reading and also some New for each day... It honestly takes about 20 minutes per day to read! So, it's totally doable.. Since these little inserts come in a pack of 25, you can either share with friends or send me a message and I'll mail you one! :)
Now here are a couple of books that I HIGHLY recommend! I've read them all and loved them all for different reasons...
Now that I mentioned how I'm working my way through reading the entire Bible in a year, I wanted to highlight this book, Women of the Word. This isn't a thriller, romance novel or any of the type.. It literally helps to teach how to and why the importance of studying God's word is. It lays out a plan for you to deepen your knowledge and equip you in a way that is going to transform your heart. I read this in a book study and while there isn't much discussion, it's precise in the way that the information is delivered to help us learn the Bible more clearly and deeply.
Words can't describe how much I LOVE this guided journal!! I was given this from my Mentor Mom Jennifer, and I just think it makes a great gift for any woman in your life. It's "a joy- inspiring guided journal designed to help you discover your hopes, nurture your dreams, and invest in those things you hold dearest." -Emily Ley. It's divided into 52 weeks, so you can take your time on this as you are reminded that God gives us abundant grace we can "pour all over ourselves." You can find this journal here! It's only about $8.00!!! That's a deal!
This book, No More Perfect Moms is honest because as we know all moms have their rough days and stages of motherhood. It talks about how we feel like we fall short because of those things that bring us down. "The Perfection Infection attacks when we compare our insides to other's outsides." - Jill Savage She helps to restore grace and love with our family and find the freedom when we embrace what our reality looks like! So good, mamas! So Good!
In His Image: 10 Ways God Calls Us To Reflect His Character by Jen Wilkin is a life changer.. I happened to read this in a small group through our church and it's a book that makes you stop and think, and question, and wonder and because of how beautifully written it is, it makes you choose to be better, more like Him. We will NEVER be perfect, but while we are on this earth having been given the gift of life, why wouldn't we choose to be the best we can be for those around us, ourselves and mostly to honor God. In her book, you'll look at ten characteristics of who God is: holy, loving, just, good, merciful, gracious, faithful, patient, truthful, and wise. You'll read about these characteristics and reflect on how you're doing in those areas. I know a lot of people don't want to talk about past hurt, trauma, pain, weakness, sin, etc. but knowing that none of us are perfect or will ever be, we can talk about it, read about it and help better understand how we can become free of the bad and full of the good.
Wow! All I can say is wow about this book! I literally couldn't put it down because I kept thinking to myself, "Yes! This is dead on!" Neil T. Anderson does a great job in Victory Over the Darkness by making you think, "What is stopping you from really walking in the joy of the Lord?" - Anderson. Whether we like to think about it or not, there is a lot of darkness out there that we need to overcome and conquer to find our identity in Christ, free ourselves, win the battle of our mind, become more spiritual and discover what God actually thinks about us. This book uses scripture as the backbone to help guide it's readers. I LOVE this book, it's probably a top 5 for me actually because it puts things into reality of how they actually are!
Oh boy.. I left this one for the last book.. Soul of Shame. The title sounds a little daunting and scary doesn't it? I'll be honest, our Christian Marriage Counselor/Pastor recommended this book for my husband and I to read through and discuss together. Whether we really know it or not we all carry around some form of shame with us... It could be related to the past, or recent events, relationships, etc. Shame is the ultimate killer of all joy.. Did you hear that friends? SHAME is the ultimate killer of all joys in our lives.. Curt uses biblical wisdom, neuroscience research and powerful stories that doesn't hide our shame but enables us to name what is keeping us from freedom and wonder. When reading this book, you'll be digging deep, but ultimately you can help yourself find that freedom you so deserve. This book has discussion questions in the back to go along with each chapter... It's good stuff! It really is!
Now, hopefully you can find a book that appeals to you and set some intentional goals to either sit and read and take some time for yourself or buy the audio version to listen to. Here's to a great week ahead and taking time to finding ultimate joy and freedom!