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Strength, Courage & Wisdom Book Club

Best selling author Valorie Burton unlocks the secret to your personal happiness. She reveals 13 happiness triggers – choices that can boost your joy right now, even in the midst of deadlines, dating, marriage, parenting and squeezing in a workout or girls night out. Throught these happiness triggers, you will learn how to bounce back from stress and adversity faster, enjoy deeper satisfaction in your marriage and friendships, maximize career opportunities and increase your income and fight off illness. We’re kicking things off on March 1st.

Click below to join in.

https://www.facebook.com/groups/732626267442849

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The Makings of You

Hi there & Happy Valentine’s Day! I hope everyone is doing well and feeling great! I am excited to share today’s post with you. As promised, I am focusing on song lyrics this month and creating a quick, snippet of inspiration based off of a line or verse.

I heard a little of “The Makings of You,” by Curtis Mayfield the other night and I’ve been listening to it since that day. Beautiful song! For all you lovebirds out there, I recommend playing it for Valentine’s Day. It might score you some extra love points. You can thank me later.

I am inspired by the lyrics, “these are the makings of you, it is true, the makings of you.”

Your presence excites me

The thought of you makes my heart pound

And when I see you, I anticipate the moment that you acknowledge me and say hi

You are wise and kind and gentle with your words. Your affection cannot be duplicated

Your gaze of admiration makes me giddy and vulnerable all at the same time

You have that effect on me

I want to know all about you

How you think and why

You embody love, humility, strength and wisdom

You make me better, not just me but everyone you meet

“These are the true makings of you”

Go in peace and find somebody to make you feel giddy and vulnerable all at the same time. 

~Peace

 

 

 

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God’s Hand of Blessing

Psalm 18:35 NIV You make your saving help my shield, and your right hand sustains me; your help has made me great.

I’ve often referred to the Hand of God as my hand of protection. It wasn’t until reading a recent devotional from Pastor Joel Osteen that I began to meditate on the phrase “God’s Hand of Blessing.” I’ve witnessed countless interventions in which God has protected me from dangers seen and unseen but somehow my mind always connected those valiant acts of kindness as protection instead of blessings.

Several weeks ago, I was diagnosed with breast cancer and much to my delight, I was diagnosed in the very early stages of development (blessing). On April 8, 2015, I had planned to spend a fun-filled spring break day with my daughter but God had other plans for me (blessing). For several weeks I had experienced a constant nudging to have a mammogram performed (blessing). I’m so thankful that I obeyed the Lord’s instructions, which led me to the local mammogram mobile unit in my community and several follow-up appointments (blessing).

I’m ecstatic over these series of events because: 1. I didn’t have an authorized referral to get a mammogram, but God saw fit to give me favor with the nurses and they granted me access to what I needed. 2. Through numerous test and observations, it was concluded that the cancerous cells were confined to one location. 3. I was able to have genetics counseling which paved the way for my daughter and future grandchildren to be aware of any threats. and 4.I’ve learned the value of true friendship. I understand now more than ever why it is important to surround yourself with wise counsel. We all need friends to laugh with but we also need those friends that will cry with us, pray with us, encourage us and hold our hand as we take a walk of faith through a stormy season.

I’m so thankful for the many blessings that God has given me by simply waving his hand in my direction! To God be the Glory!

Peace and Blessings,

SuGa

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Things Remembered

Philippians 3:13-14 NKJV- Brethren, I do not count myself to have apprehended: but one thing I do, forgetting those things which are behind and reaching forward to those things which are ahead, I press toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus.

Oftentimes we can be hard on ourselves for bad decisions that we’ve made in our past. If we’re not careful we will allow our entire life to be defined by a few bad choices that we made during a weak season in our life. Maybe it was a bad breakup or a financial investment gone wrong, or maybe something as simple as a lapse in judgment on our part. Those choices can have a profound affect on us and how we conduct our everyday life.

We view some mistakes as being more difficult to bounce back from than others. Sometimes we’re embarrassed and think how could this have happened to me and then there are those other times when we worry about what others will think of us because of our misstep.

In those times I am comforted by verses 13 and 14 in Philippians Chapter 3 because they say so eloquently say the words that I often have trouble reciting. The word makes it clear that we will make mistakes, but it’s how we bounce back after the mistake that will determine our outcome. In those two versus I found three declarations to help get me through the tough times: I don’t understand, I will not forget and I will press on.

File those missteps in your “things remembered file” and press on toward the victory in Jesus Christ. He doesn’t want us to get stuck in our past, we’ve been purposed for greater things ahead.

Peace and Wellness,

SuGa

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Different on Purpose

John 15:13 KJV: Greater love hath no man than this, that a man lay down his life for his friend.

How would you spend your time if you knew someone purposely died for you? Would you live any differently? Would you make different choices? What if someone loved you so much that they willingly gave up their life so that you could live a victorious one. How would you remember them? Would you resolve to live your life by honoring them or would you chose to live on your own terms and disregard their honorable act of sacrifice.

For the millions who have accepted Christ and made the choice to devote their lives to him, let’s make it our business to live different on purpose. I know it can be easy to get caught up in the everyday messiness of the world and heaven knows that we are far from perfect people but effort goes a long way. When God created the Heavens and the Earth, he put forth the effort. When Adam and Eve found themselves unclothed in the Garden and God gave them covering, he put forth the effort. When God raised Lazarus from the dead and restored life to him, he put forth the effort. The same effort was exhibited when God gave us his only begotten son. All throughout the Bible we find God always putting forth effort on our behalf.

How are you repaying him?

When God created you, he put forth the effort so that you could fulfill a void that exists in this world. Without your time, talent and influence, there is a need that will forever be unfulfilled. What can you do to live different on purpose to ensure that God’s word is fulfilled in your life.

My different on purpose looks like this: Personally, I like to sprinkle a little SuGa into the lives of believers and seekers. Prayerfully I give myself away to be used by God. Purposely I share the message of Christ with others with the hope that they will share with someone else.

Make the effort to live different on purpose today.

Peace and Wellness,

SuGa

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Peace Begins With You

Peace Begins With You

“If it is possible, as far as it depends on you, live at peace with everyone.” Romans 12:18, NIV

Today’s scripture reminds us of our call to peace as declared by the Lord. With all the issues and trials that many of us face each day, it can become a tall order to live at peace with everyone.

Just thinking about this makes my stomach a bit nausea because Lord knows I’ve had my share of run-ins and bump-ups with others. At first sight this scripture can be overwhelming, but wait…. Did you notice the first four words of the scripture? “if it is possible”

Hmm, are those four words the get out of jail free card that excuses us from putting forth the effort to live in peace with everyone? Or maybe it’s an important component of a formula that we can use to help live out this declaration from God.

I believe the words if it is possible allow for a bit of self reflection for those who have been called and chosen to live the life of a peculiar people. The word does say that we’ve been set aside for a purpose.

First, we understand as a child of the Most High God, “all things are possible through Christ who strengthens us.

Second, the words If it is possible allow us to evaluate our personal belief system and to challenge the way that we handle and process information. We have the opportunity to align our thoughts and actions with how the word says we should reflect the image of Christ. We can then identify opportunities for improvement and make adjustments as necessary.

My personal belief is that peace begins within each of us. If we expect to begin the process of living at peace with everyone else, we first have to be at peace with ourselves.

Third, put the formula to work!

As Far as it depends on me / If it is possible = live at peace with __________________.

We all experience some type of conflict within our personal and professional lives. If you have a desire to move beyond the strife understand that you have the power within to live at peace because all things are possible in Christ!

Take your effort, divide it by the infinite possibilities in Christ and reap the rewards of peaceful relationships in all areas of you life!

My intuitive nature reveals to me that God wants me to do everything within my power to live at peace but he doesn’t expect me to accomplish this without his help.

Peace and Wellness,
Suga

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Heartbeat

Psalm 126:5 NIV – Those who cry while they plant will joyfully sing while they harvest. The person who goes out weeping, carrying his bag of seed, will come home singing, carrying his bundles of grain.

God has promised to replace our tears with joy and our weeping with singing. Our job is to remain loyal in our obligations. Whatever responsibilities that God has entrusted to us, may we run our race whole-heartedly and never give in to weariness.

Trust and believe that God appreciates our willingness to complete those small tasks. Your current assignment may seem insignificant, but in due time, God will multiply your efforts and your faith will produce a harvest.

It may be rough going for you at the moment and you may feel like your current assignment is lasting a long time, but never has God forsaken those who love him! In fact, the word says that your name is written in the palm of his hand! We are reassured by God’s word that we are the apple of his eye and I firmly believe that he is concerned about every aspect of our lives.

Do you remember in the book of Genesis when God came down from Heaven to see about Adam and he asked that one simple question, “Where are you?”

Answer God and let him know where you are today. Make a decision to dedicate every waking moment of your day to God and watch him move in your life. Whatever concerns you, concerns God.

Personal Reflection:

During my quiet time, when all is still and my mind isn’t racing, I love to sit and listen to the sound of my heart beat… “thump thump”, “thump thump”, “thump thump”. Those thumps are soon replaced with the phrase…”go God”, “go God”, “go God”

Each time I repeat this phrase I am humbled because God loves me so much and I am reminded by every heartbeat that God is always with me, he is always in control and I am reassured in the fact that everything that I am and will ever be is all because of his love for me.

I pray that you find encouragement in each heartbeat.

Much Love,

SuGa
    

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“Intimidated By My Treasure”

Many of us start each year making resolutions and setting lofty goals that we never complete. I personally have made some of the same resolutions since 2011 and I still haven’t completed them to my satisfaction.

This year I am challenging myself to do things differently. My goal is to stop being intimidated by my treasure and to start being the best version of me that I can possibly be.

I am determined to stop delaying my destiny, to stop sabotaging my success and to stop settling for less than God’s hand-picked best for me and my family. It’s time to stop being afraid of the treasures that God has blessed me with and to maximize every opportunity. You may or may not know that your treasure is your gift, purpose, calling or ministry. To discover your treasure, ask yourself, “What’s that one special thing that I do, in my very own special way that positively affects others. What makes it a treasure is that it is your unique gift. Someone else may do the exact same thing, but they can’t do it with the same flare that you have. Maybe it’s your ability to listen intently, it could be that you’re musically gifted, or that you have a great eye for fashion. Whatever it is, it’s yours!
I challenge you in 2015 to stop being intimidated by your treasure. Stop dumbing it down, stop getting sidetracked and stop making excuses! There are songs to sing, books to write, businesses to develop and so much more. God will always make room for your gift. All you have to do is put forth the effort.

Psalm 3:5-6 says Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways submit to him, and he will make your paths straight.

Trust that God had great things in mind for you whenever he gifted you your treasure. How will you use it impact this world?

SuGa

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Your I Am Will Track You Down

So I recently read a devotional from Pastor Joel Osteen that says, “whatever follows your I Am will track you down!”

This statement made me strongly consider the types of adjectives that I’ve been using to describe myself and more importantly which of those descriptions were trying to track me down!

I thought of the numerous times when I’ve declared “I’m tired, “I can’t,” “I’m not capable,” “I can’t handle it,” etc…

My list could go on for days…

And then I thought about my Heavenly Father who is known as the Great I Am, and his I Am is followed by words such as: “great,” “mighty,” “all-powerful,” “everlasting,” and most importantly….”love!”

So I had to ask myself, “do you want tiredness tracking you down or would you like motivation to catch up with you? Do you want to spend your life being incapable or would you like to walk in full confidence knowing that you are well able?

I’ve decided to change the words that I complete my “I Am” sentence with.

Today, I am highly favored, I am a royal priesthood and a chosen people! I am wonderfully and uniquely made and as it says in Luke 1:45 “I am blessed because I believe that what the Lord has said to me will be accomplished!

Now it’s your turn, what words will you use to complete your “I AM” sentence?

~SuGa

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But God Didn’t Lose Me

What happens when things don’t work out the way that you planned they would? What do you do when your happily ever after turns out to be a miserable disaster? Do you give up and retreat or do you allow God to do a new thing in you?

Honestly, I lost my way for a while. I thought that I was prepared for any circumstance that would come my way. I was packing scripture and my faith nozzle was on full throttle.

But, I lost my way….

Instead of living the life of a purposed woman. I became doubtful and my self-esteem was a distant memory. No longer did I study my word and allow God to renew my spirit daily. I grew further and further away from God.

But God didn’t lose me…

God reminded me that I am his chosen child, bought for a price and created with very intricate details. He reminded me that his love will never fail and that he is always available to me. God reminded me that no matter where this journey called life tries to take me, He is my way-maker, mind-regulator and a friend who sticks closer than a brother.

I am so thankful to know that God will never leave me nor forsake me, no matter what!

If you are someone who lost your way for a while or feel that your life took some unfortunate turns and you’re looking for a way out….remember that God is your way out, your way up and your way over!

Praise God for renewed strength and new mercies.

Prayer: Dear God, I thank you so much for coming to see about me. I stand in awe of you and your compassion for me, the least of these. You saw fit to restore peace and promise in my life and I love you for that. I thank you for renewed joy, in Jesus name.

SuGa