This is the Year| By Jasmine Beard

Year after year, people make resolutions, set goals, and even come up with a plan to change for the new year.

I am all about plans and goals, but I definitely do not think they have to be designated just for the beginning of the year.

Then the Lord answered me and said: “Write the vision and make it plain on tablets, that he may run who reads it.” Habakkuk 2:2 (NKJV)

It is never too early or too late to evaluate your life and start again, dream again, and redo something you have failed at in the past.

For the past two years I have planned to read the One Year Bible. And both years sometime around March, I have gotten so far behind in my Bible plan that I forfeit it all together and settle for shorter more attainable Bible reading goals.

You would think this year I wouldn’t even put reading the One Year Bible on my goal list.  But come November of 2019, I had already purchased the one year Bible and by December I was already questioning my decision. I would think to myself, “why did I even buy that?”, “I probably won’t finish it, just like every other year.”, “maybe I should have committed to reading the One Year Bible on my phone, that way it would be easier to face defeat when I don’t complete it.”

It was in that precise moment that the Holy Spirit quickened me, He said, “with that way of thinking and speaking to yourself you will fail, change your thinking.”

Phew! 

Past failures can leave us hopeless and can stop us from even setting goals.

We think to ourselves, “maybe I am just meant to be fat”, “maybe I am always going to deal with fear and anxiety”, “I will never be able to follow a budget”.

And believe it or not those words have power. I mean God used words to create the earth and all its livelihood. And even Adam created the names of animals by his words.

So, do not discredit the power of your words. Whether spoken out loud or inwardly they can have a major effect on your mind and can be the demise of you not finishing or accomplishing the goals you so desperately need to.

“Death and life are in the power of the tongue..” Proverbs 18:21 NKJV

This is the year.

It is the year that you can accomplish that goal and can be free from what you have always wanted to be free from.

Some of my biggest accomplishments goal wise have been because of God’s grace carrying me to the finish line, amazing accountability, and mindset.

Today, if you know that you are not capable of achieving that goal. Change your way of thinking to think “I don’t have to achieve this goal, but God can through me.”

If your goal involves better health, a better financial state, a life free from anxiety, guess what? God desires that for you too and will give you the grace to complete it.

So trust God, change the way you speak about those goals, and surround yourself with community that will hold you accountable to your goals.

“But he said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ’s power may rest on me.” 2 Corinthians 12:9 (NIV)

It Gets Better: A Letter to the Old Me| By Emily Lawson

Dear Old Me,

I see you. I feel your anxiousness. I feel your worry; how deep it goes in your chest. I know that your head tries to tell you that you need to lose that weight. I know it tells you that you are not as pretty as her. I know it tells you that you do not have the skills. 

I know it tells you that they do not care. 

And I also know it keeps those words on a repeat soundtrack at all hours. Day and night. 

I also know what you have been through. You have overcome so many things already. You’ve been to the darkest of days and back in your life.

Yet, that lonely feeling stands. It reminds you every day of the times you have failed and been failed by others. Your mind tells you that God has no idea where you are. You are one in millions. There is no way that He can feel the need to help you. 

But, honey, God sees you as ‘one in a million’. You are unique and perfect. He created the you that you are and cares enough to send His only son to die on a cross for YOU. God is so much greater than the thoughts that the devil puts in your head. 

My grace is sufficient for thee; for my strength is made perfect in weakness.” 2 Corinthians 12:9 (KJV)

That means YOUR weakness.

His strength is the PERFECT thing that comes from admitting the weakness you feel. 

Your significant other is not always available. Your best friend needs sleep, too. Your social media friends will not quite get it on the level you need.

Your mind is a dangerous prison, love.

Mentally: It holds you in a controlled environment and in some ways that provides comfort. You are in a place that is familiar, and you have grown used to the numbness. It is mostly in your control. But on bad days, you just need to reach a little further than it is letting you, and the chains around your neck dig a little deeper. That restraint makes you feel like you are never going to make it out alive. 

Physically: You are tired. And not an “Oh I couldn’t sleep last night” tired, but an “I can feel it in my bones, and it isn’t going to change” tired. You are tired of faking the smile for others. You are tired of trying so hard to be “normal”, and it is weighing down your shoulders and making it harder to get out of bed. 

You need help.

And asking for help does not mean that you have failed. It means that you have WON. It means that you have finally stepped back, let go of control, and held to the hand of Jesus to drag you out of the pit that your head has held you captive in all this time.

Now, listen to Him. 

Rebuke the devil from off your back. Tell him he has no place. Take hold of your Savior’s hand and let him break those chains. 

Get out there. Seek the help. Talk to the doctor. Take the medication. Get on the path that helps you be the best you. 

For your family. 

For yourself.

For Jesus.

Recovery is a road, but you have got a friend to walk down it with you. Through each step, He will place your foot. Each bump, He catches your arm. Trust in Him.  

It can and WILL get better. I am telling you from the other side.

Your mental health is so important, and you are worth every bit of effort. 

Never forget that. 

Love, New Me

Follow Emily’s Instagram @the_modest_wife and/or email her at modest.wife@gmail.com.