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The Spirit Gives Life!

“Mother Nature was in full fury this week, but so was the compassion”

Martha Raddatz from This Week ABC NEWS

When I heard those words I had to stop and write it down because it was exactly how I was praying. My heart gets heavy when I hear of one more story of natural disasters, and we had a scare of our own this last week when a neighboring hill caught on fire and we watched with our neighbors to determine if the flames were going to jump the hill and head towards us.

But even in the midst of our discussion as we stood there pondering the question, I received no less than 10 texts or phone calls from friends or relatives making sure we were okay and asking if they could help. It surprised me and filled my heart with a warmth and comfort as I responded to each one, updating them and letting them know that if I needed them they would hear from me right away.

One of the questions I always want to ask of God is “why?”, but then knowing I will probably never receive an answer to that question, moreover,  I want to see people’s hearts and spirit of love and giving. Because the world is so crazy upside down half of the time, we have to level it out with our hearts. Some of the best of people come out at the worst of times. While I hate watching people suffer on T.V.; the women standing at the top of their houses with the water rising up to them, or the man caught in his truck with a river of water rushing through the windows and the streets looking like a rushing river headed over the falls, the next shot is of someone giving of themselves. The news reporter who shouts to the woman ” I’m coming for you, don’t worry!”, or the brothers that get their own boats and go back and forth around the city to help those that are stuck, or the football player that gives of his time and money to help because he has the ability to make a difference.

I love the human spirit and the Holy Spirit that lives within all of us. If we choose to feel it and use it, we can move mountains. Never give up on that! We each have the ability to give of ourselves and to others at any moment, not just in emergencies but in every day life. Open your eyes to what other people need of you today. You will be surprised how much you can be an encouragement by your simple act of love, patience or understanding. A kind word, an opening of a door, a smile….

Let your spirit soar!

Have a great week!

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BROKENHEARTED

Recently I have heard stories of some pretty hard times that have left women brokenhearted in their spirit, and if truth be known, I have recently experienced this myself.  Some were job-related, others were more personal like a love lost, or a broken friendship. But the heart still feels the same; a crushing, actual pain in your heart that literally feels if it was possible to break a heart, it would fall to the ground in little shattered pieces.

I used to try to control every tough situation when I was younger and most of the time I could manage to diffuse a rough moment in time with my family. I was known by my mom as “the peacemaker.”  Sometimes when you are labeled by your parents at a young age, you tend to take on that label as part of your personality. While there is nothing wrong with that in some areas, it can lead you to take on roles that you aren’t prepared for.  So for years, I tried to fix things anytime someone was mad or frustrated at someone. I would ride in on my white horse and save the day! I am pretty good at fixing disputes and take great pride in being an encourager of women, but there is a part that I was forgetting in trying to make everything 100% all the time.

I am not God! I can’t fix every broken heart or upsetting thing that happens around me. And I was reminded of that recently when I couldn’t fix something in my life that I wanted to resolve so bad. So I went to the one person who could; my Father God. And as I poured out my broken heart to Him, I poured over His word and found a couple of verses that helped me:

“Psalms 7:10”

My shield is with God, who saves the upright in heart~

“Hebrews 6:16”

For people swear by something greater than themselves, and for them a confirming oath ends every dispute~

In life we can’t always fix every problem or situation in a nice neat little bow and let the angels sing as we go on our way. The truth is sometimes life gets really messy and ugly and our hearts are shattered. It doesn’t mean we shouldn’t try to resolve disputes or disappointments; but we need to know that God has plans too! He will protect us from the things we made need to step aside from or end. He will find a way to change what we think is the right direction to handle something and turn us the other way around so our life can get back on track the way it’s supposed to. He protects us from more harm if need be, and covers us with His grace and love.

So while I mend my broken heart for now, I just settle into His words and let them wrap around me like a warm blanket on a cold day. I don’t need to control anything, just breathe and listen to His warm, calming voice in my heart, that day by day heals itself back to whole again.

Have you experienced this kind of hurt this week? I hope these words help you to heal and that you soak in God’s word to keep you steady in this crazy off balanced world.

Leave me a comment below if this post touched you today…………

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Avoiding Roadblocks

I’ve been trying to walk my dogs early in the morning; for one because it has been really hot here and the temperature reaches into the 100’s, and two because I am trying to avoid other people out walking their dogs, or just general traffic so my sweet crazy Lola can walk off leash because, well, she is a complete crazy tugging animal when I have her on the leash but as soon as I let go, she walks right beside me like an angel! But that story is for another time, or maybe it really ties into this story after all.

We all hit roadblocks in our life; the loss of a job, or the anger of a friend we have disagreed with, or a marriage that has hit the skids, or a family member who has made us feel worthless. Maybe it’s a family thing or a professional thing that seems to knock us off our game. We feel stuck, frustrated, afraid and quite frankly it can paralyze us. The frustration can lead to anger, fear and other human emotions that we don’t like to feel and it can lead us straight to giving up on life.

I have been helping some women who have some real roadblocks in their life, and it can feel completely hopeless, but for the fact that roadblocks can become life lessons depending on how we look at them. Sometimes, those things that frustrate you the most are great opportunities to stop, think, and meditate on how you can work that situation out differently this time.  Maybe you could NOT react to a certain situation the way you normally do and “turn the other cheek” as they say and do something opposite this time and see how it works. It could lead to a “breakthrough” instead of a roadblock where you could crash right through that brick wall and break it down once and for all.

Ask God to show you where you could walk around, walk through or just demolish that roadblock from you life in a way that is pleasing to Him, the one that matters!

In Luke 22:42 it says “Father, if you are willing, remove this cup from me; yet not my will, but Yours be done”

Just as my Lola was fighting to break free from me, when I released that pressure of the chain from her, she was able to relax, calm down and walk by my side with confidence. You can do that same thing if you let God remove that roadblock or chain that is holding you back from becoming the amazing woman you can be in spite of the occasional setbacks of life. Don’t give up! Breakthrough….

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Selective Sight

My husband was looking for his reading glasses one night while I was in the middle of cooking dinner. As I watched him search room to room and back again, I could see the look of frustration on his face. I knew he needed my help, but I was busy making sure dinner didn’t burn!

I tried coaching him from the sidelines “maybe they are in your office?” “Did you check in your truck?” “retrace your steps!” “I know they are somewhere, I saw you with them just a bit ago.” Unsuccessfully we attempted this cat and mouse game of “Where are my hubby’s glasses?” until I decided he needed a fresh set of eyes to guide and help him. I found the glasses in our bathroom sitting on a magazine clear as day and when I came out and showed him he was shocked! He responded with a “I looked there and didn’t see a thing!”

It was at that moment I realized that when we go into a panic mode of doing things in life we can become blind to the things right in front of us. Sometimes we need others to come along side of us to slow us down and see more clearly. We can make bad decisions from rushing through something because we need to do it now, or are too impatient to stop and clear our heads, minds, and sight!

I always have people pray over me before my speaking engagements so God can help me clear my mind to the words HE wants me to speak.  If I went out and spoke blindly to people out of fear, insecurity or self imposed ego the message would be quite different and not in a good way.

There is a verse in the Bible “Search me God, and know my heart; test me and know my concerns. See if there is any offensive way in me; lead me in the everlasting way” Psalms 139:23,24

Don’t go through life blindly rushing around with your own agenda! Ask God to guide you and help you see clearly the path He has for you. It’s a much better plan than any plan you may have alone.

What have you searched for in your life this week that has left you frustrated or upset? Do you need to search in a different way or look for it somewhere else? Ask for help with someone who’s opinion you trust to help you come up with a better plan.

Leave a comment here or on my “Mama Mantelli” Face Book page and have a blessed week!