The Eye of the Storm

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Written by: Kim Johnson – immysister.org

Sometimes, I just have to sit back and praise God for no reason at all. When I think of all the times God should have turned His back on me and He didn’t, I am just plain ole grateful. And even in my brokenness, when I went through Hurricane Katrina (figuratively speaking), and I thought I wouldn’t survive, God was right there extending me grace and mercy.

Humph…just thinking about life. Storms. God; and how they are all intertwined, I am awed. For instance, let’s look at Hurricane Katrina metaphorically. According to an article I read, the storm crept up on Louisiana early in the morning, causing catastrophic damage and death. Well, in my mind’s eye, I imagine everyone was sleeping, feeling warm, safe, secure, and not a care in the world. Then out of nowhere the category 3 storm hit with 100 -140 mile winds per hour. The storm was devastating, kind of like the storms that enter our lives; suddenly, swiftly and from out-of-nowhere.

When trouble (storms) enter our lives, it can almost be hard to catch your breath. The intensity almost knocks the wind out of you and you find yourself asking God how can you make it through? The thing is this sister’s, even in the middle of the most horrific storm, there is a calm region at the center called the Eye of the Storm. And during that time there CAN be sunshine, you can even see a rainbow, but you have to hold on tight to God’s hand and His promise.

In the bible, James writes that we should consider it all joy when we encounter various trials (James 1:2). Pastor Charles Stanley breaks it down even further, he say’s “there is nothing joyful about trials in and of themselves. The key to finding joy in adversity is where we place our focus. If we concentrate on our circumstances, we will become disheartened and discouraged. But when we fix our eyes on Jesus, we learn to rejoice in our difficulties, because God has promised to work through them to strengthen our faith, bring us into closer fellowship with Himself, and teach us endurance (pg. 1475).

Sister’s, what I am basically trying to say is this, you may not understand your storm, but know for sure, that even in the middle of your raging emotions, you can find peace. Call out to God, reach out to your sisters, read the bible, talk with someone and most importantly, know that God is working it out for you.

Sister to sister do you hear me? What are you going through?

References
FEMMA. (2017, August 28). Hurricaine Katrina Fast Facts. Retrieved from http://www.cnn.com/2013/08/23/us/hurricane-katrina-statistics-fast-facts/index.html
Stanley, C. (2009). Life Principles. La Habra, CA: New American Standard Bible.

 

Do you have a Dream or Vision?

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Written by – Kim Johnson – Author of I Am My Sister (Women Helping Women)

Sisters… Knowing who you are is as essential to living, as breathing is to your very existence. When we know who we are, we don’t allow the opinion of others to influence us or define who we are. In that matter, neither do we allow negative views from people to interfere with the dreams or visions that God lays on our heart.

One of the things I have had to learn the hard way is, keeping the visions and dreams that God gives me, to myself. I have also learned that, not everyone smiling at me is really happy for me. Shucks! I have shared things in my excitement (in the past), that I wish I hadn’t. I have had people tell me, “it won’t work,” or question if I have the time, or tell me that I should charge people, as well as, suggest that I simply shouldn’t waste my time; they have even gone as far as to ask me, if I were sure that I heard it from God.” I used to get downhearted and confused on what I should actually do. And even stupidly, sometimes changed my mind, and did what they suggested.

However, today, I march to the God beat. I realize now, that when God gives me a vision, that vision is for me alone, and that other people may not understand it, or see it. In the bible, Moses tells the story of Jacob’s son Joseph, who was a dreamer and how he was sold into slavery (out of jealousy) shortly after he shared his dream with his brothers (Genesis 37:1-35, pg. 46).

In one of my bibles, Pastors Charles Stanley breaks down that scripture into laymen terms, which I’m grateful for, because I was able to get his translation down into my gut. Stanley wrote, “When God reveals His will to you, others may not understand what He is doing and may criticize or oppose you because of it. However, obey Him anyway. The trials you go through may be difficult, but they are necessary to mold you into the person God wants you to be. And like Joseph, you will be able to say to those who are against you, “You meant evil against me, but God meant it for good in order to bring about this present result, to preserve many people alive (Gen. 50:20, pg. 50).

I guess, what I am trying to say sisters is this, God say’s you are a masterpiece. You are beautiful and wonderfully made by Him. When God lays a dream or vision in your heart, go for it and have no fear or worries! God got you.

Sister to Sister, do you hear me! Do you know who you are? Are you doing what God wants you to do?

Reference:
Stanley, C. (2009). Life Principles. La Habra, CA: New American Standard Bible.

Standing Still and Having Faith

waiting-on-godWritten by –  Kim Johnson – immysister.org

One of the hardest lessons that I have had to learn, is standing still and having faith. In fact, this lesson I am still working on. Prior to now, practically all of my adult life has been filled with, ups and downs, highs and lows. If a thought entered my mind, I went with it; Man o man, how crazy is that. Fortunately for me now, I can see that I have had a blessed life, in spite of myself. And I thank God for being the ultimate parent, because, no matter WHAT! He still loved and adored me…But God!

So, as I write this blog my sisters, I wonder about your thoughts on standing still and having faith. I find that standing still is so hard to do. Standing still when faced with adversity. Standing still when your heart hurts. Standing still when you are grieving. Standing still when you are financially broke. Standing still in the face of bills needing to be paid. Standing still when you are sick. Standing still when you don’t know what to do. How can I willing just stand still when my life depends on me moving, how do I do this?

The bible tells us that in order to stand still, all we have to do is, “be alert. Be firm in the Christian faith and be courageous and strong” (1 Corinthians 16:13); and that, we can do all things through Christ, who strengthens us” (Philippians 4:13).

And that we also must have faith, say’s Jesus. In the Book of Matthew 17:20, He says, “I tell you the truth, if you have faith as small as a mustard seed, you can say to this mountain, ‘Move from here to there’ and it will move, nothing will be impossible for you.” Faith is a gift from God, and to have Faith, you must have a connection with Jesus Christ. Just by believing that He truly is listening, you have Faith! It’s that easy! Faith is very important, as everything that was done in the Bible was by Faith. We must read the Bible day and night, as it is very important in our “Faith” (Wilki).

I tell you my sisters, when we stand still and have faith in God, we can hear when the Lord is talking to us. We also will understand that no matter what we are going through, or faced with, that our Father will guide us through it and that we will be alright.

Sisters do you hear me! What are you going through?

 

Bibliography
Chery, F. (2017). Standing Firm. Bible Reasons.
Stanley, C. (2009). Life Principles. La Habra, CA: New American Standard Bible.
Wilki. (n.d.). How to Have Faith in Jesus. Retrieved November 1, 2017, from https://www.wikihow.com/Have-Faith-in-Jesus