Wednesday, February 29, 2012

The Blessed Life...

"Give and it will be given to you: good measure, pressed down, shaken together and running over will be put in your lap.  For with the same measure that you use it, it will be measured back to you."
 - Luke 6:38 (NKJV)
     As I continue seeking God's Perfect Will for my life (NOT just His Permissible Will); this book was suggested to me on several occasions.  Thank God for a Spirit-Led Husband and good friends who know my heart, and love me enough to point me in a Divine Direction!  So, it was after prayerful petition that I dove into this Wisdom Packed study; and how Greatly Blessed I am for it!!  There is MUCH to be said about Obtaining and Maintaining a Blessed Life, and I am just beginning to get a grasp on the power!  Along with seeking God's Perfect Will, I have been led to consider my Heart Condition.
     Now, if you follow my posts, you'll see that I have taken a Stand for my Health this year; but this kind of Heart Examine has gone beyond my physical body and into the Supernatural Realm.  I have begun to notice the impact my attitude has on every choice I make, and more importantly on my results.  Another Scripture that has been on my heart lately is found in Colossians 3:23 - "And whatever you do, do it heartily, as to the Lord and Not to men".  Notice, it does not say "and SOME of what you do" or to do it "sort of"; it says WHATEVER you do, do it HEARTILY - which means sincerely, without restraint.  What wise counsel!!  I began imagining what my life would be like if I did EVERYTHING  Heartily as to the Lord, and I felt joy and peace in new and exciting ways.  I even began to consider that if I approached my Fitness and Nutrition "as to the Lord" the burden of my flesh may be replaced by worship.  
     This week, I have purposed to do everything as an Act of Worship as to the Lord; and have been blessed with new energy, peace, and joy!  I have been filled with a new vitality, even in the little things - like not drinking soda or consuming large amounts of sugar.  I've also found this same vitality as I sow into my family's "Love Tanks", and I've experienced the abundance that is promised in Luke 6!!!  I am clear that I have more work to do in this area, but I am certainly grateful for a new opportunity to Give and Live On Purpose!!  Please join me in continuing to Dive Deeper into The Blessed Life!!

Tuesday, February 21, 2012

My Big But...

"So then, because you are lukewarm, and neither cold nor hot, I will vomit you out of my mouth!"

     Along with having been the "Queen of Denial", I have grown a Big But!  Now, of course I am referring to the endless number of excuses I can generate, and/or the ease of validating bad habits and wrong thinking.  This Big But has become quite the obstacle, and distraction - to say the least!  When did I become so quick to  develop "But" responses, I don't even remember; but I do remember being quite good at it even as a Young Woman being asked to complete my Chores.  Here's the funny thing about my Big is not a statement of Honor!  In Revelation, when Jesus was speaking about The Lukewarm Church, He was clearly Not Pleased by their indifference!!  My Big But places me in this category of Lukewarm Indifference.  When I throw out a Big But, I am neither choosing in or out, I am simply delaying the inevitable or looking for another option.  YUCK!!  
     As I've taken a Stand and made a New Commitment to my health, I have been reminded of just how many bad habits I have adopted to prevent me from Obtaining and Maintaining Health and Wellness!  Likewise, as I've sought wisdom about why I would settle for Lukewarm Indifference over Excellence, the Holy Spirit quickly brings to mind the Scripture in Colossians 3:23, "And whatever you do, do it heartily, as to the Lord and not to men!"  What a sweet reminder!  Additionally, I was shown the Lies of the Enemy that I have allowed to creep in and take hold that say; "I'm not good enough", "I don't deserve to be healthy", "It's not really worth it", "I'll never achieve the goals I set", "I'm destined to have High Blood Pressure, Diabetes, and Cancer" - just to name a few.  It is at this point that I now have a choice to make.  I can either continue to walk in sin by giving the Adversary such Power in my life, OR I can rise up in the Authority God has given me as His daughter and take captive my thoughts and responses!!  Now, I realize that just by choosing to align with God's desires for my body and my life, does Not mean the Adversary will stop trying to plant such nonsense; it Does, however, mean that I no longer have to settle for less than God's Very Best! 
     Recently, Lysa Terkeurst from Proverbs 31 Ministries wrote a blog about this very topic entitled, "But God Verses".  In her post, she encourages us to follow every "But I" statement with a "But God" statement of truth to decrease the size of our Big But.  She provides a list of Scriptures that include "But God..." to add to our arsenal of tools.  I am grateful for her time and research, and commit to implement this practice immediately!  By acknowledging my "Big But", I find forgiveness and grace as I align with what God says about me rather than what the World would say or what the Adversary would like me to believe!  Likewise, I now have the opportunity to Choose as to the Lord in ALL areas of my life.  I am no longer bound by my Big But, I am, instead free to make wise choices about my health - again honoring the Powerful connection between my Body, Soul and Spirit!  As we begin this Lenten Season, I am inspired to lay down bad eating habits and replace them with The Word of God!  I invite you to join me in this quest towards a more Healthy Lifestyle, leaving our Big Buts Behind (pun intend...LOL)!  May God Richly Bless us as we surrender to Him and ALL that He has for us!!

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

Mrs. Jeff Baker...

"Love NEVER Fails!"

     22 years ago today, I began a Love Journey that has been the best of times and the worst of times; and through it all, I have learned that "Love NEVER Fails!"  It was a wet, winter Wednesday morning in Utah when I became Mrs. Jeff Baker, and I will never forget the warmth that overtook me as I dedicated my heart to my Handsome Prince Charming!  I was able to be married in His Mother's wedding gown, at the same location where my Parent's and Grandparents were married - SUCH a joy!!  We were married at 8:10 am and left directly after the ceremony for our Honeymoon Suite; then enjoyed our Reception three days later - Best Plan Ever!!
02/14/1990 - SLC, UT
     I have now been Mrs. Jeff Baker for more than half my life, and I can honestly say that I am honored to carry the name of Such a Valor Man of God!!  It hasn't always been easy, but it has certainly been worth it!  As I pause to reflect the many years I have been a wife, I am humbled by the Many lessons I have learned - generally the hard way.  I have learned the heartache of distractions, the value of Forgiveness, the mercy of Grace, the joy of Restoration, and the peace of Renewal!!  I have not always cherished this title, nor have I always brought honor and respect through my choices.  I have, however, grown in confidence as a Daughter of God which has enabled me to Honor the Wife that I am!  
     Along the way, I have discovered several resources that have SO blessed me as a wife.  Two of my favorites are:  "The Power of a Praying Wife" by Stormie Omartian, and  "The 5 Love Languages" by Gary Chapman.  We have gained wisdom and understanding about what God says for Husbands and Wives, and through the love and support of our Pastors, Drs. Tom and Maureen Anderson, we have developed a Kingdom Marriage!!
     Today, I want to encourage you that no matter where you are at in your relationship, God desires you to know His Love!  He is faithful to fulfill that which we commit our hearts to, and He is able to breathe life into our marriages!!  I can now relate to the Shulamite Girl in Song of Solomon as she declares, "Let him kiss me with the kisses of his mouth - for your love is better than wine!"  What a blessing it is to love and be loved with Such passion!  I LOVE that He's Still the One!!

     This Valentine's Day, I invite you to join us as we begin the "Love Language Challenge"!!  We have learned the value of working our commitment, and investing in our marriage; and so it is with great anticipation that we step into a 5 Week Journey of sowing Love into one another!  May your marriage be Richly Blessed, and may you know the Joy of Being Deeply Loved!  I am Grateful to Celebrate God's Very Best for me, and continue to thank Him for the opportunity of being Mrs. Jeff Baker!!
Mr. and Mrs. Jeff Baker
Celebrating 22 Years Together!

Thursday, February 2, 2012

Wellness Update - Week 1

"For I will restore health to you And heal you of your wounds, says the Lord."
- Jeremiah 30:17
     Have you ever experienced a time where nothing seemed to go as planned or expected?  This has been one of "THOSE" weeks for me!  The moment I declared commitment, opposition arose.  Now, this in and of itself did not surprise me - having some understanding about how the Adversary works; but the change of direction that has occurred did.  This kind of sudden change in the past would have sent me into an emotional eating frenzy!  I am happy to report that with the love and support of my Sweetheart and Godly friends; I have been able to continue implementing better habits to support my overall wellness!  My Sugar Addiction, however,  continues to rise up loud and clear; so, I continue to pray through moments of craving.
     In Galatians 5:22-23, we learn that the gifts of the Spirit include Self-Control.  Now, as a Spirit-filled daughter of thee King, I want to bear good fruit!  Likewise, I know that God Is in ALL areas, amen?  So. how can I honor Him in some areas of my life and not ALL areas?  This humbling thought brings me to my knees!!  I begin to seek forgiveness for trusting God as my provider, but not allowing Him to restore my health!  How can I stand for God as my physician, and not include my addiction to sugar?  The joy of reflecting is that I can make new choices based on truth, rather than denial!  So it is, that in spite of Big changes this week, I choose to place my trust in God to heal my wounds and restore my health!!  I will continue to drink more water and less soda.  I will continue to exercise at least 3 days per week, and I will eat smaller meals every 3 hours.  These wise choices will require great Self-Control as I better support my body, and I thank God that He is faithful!