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Led By The Spirit Summer Challenge #11 Self-Control

Week 11 Challenge: Target one area of your life this week that you would like to get under control. Ask your Good Morning Girls to pray over you concerning this area. Go through the Nehemiah 2 steps, then give your success over to God.

I don’t know about you……but I love a good cupcake every now and then…..especially if they come from Sprinkles or Dimples…..ohh my goodness…….a little slice of heaven on earth!!! Going inside either of those stores, makes me exercise my self-control!

Is there an area in your life you need to exercise self-control? Is it with your eating habits? Your spending? Your words? Your thoughts? Your computer or TV time? We all have areas in our lives we need help gaining control of. YOU ARE NOT ALONE! Don’t allow your past attempts to discourage you from trying again. With God’s help you can experience success! Some of our world’s most successful people have experienced failure. If failure is part of your past, then you are in good company….

“I’ve missed more than 9000 shots in my career. I’ve lost almost 300 games. Twenty-six times I’ve been trusted to take the game winning shot and missed. I’ve failed over and over and over again in my life. And that is why I succeed.”
~ Michael Jordan

You Can Have Victory

We are called to be bond servants of Christ alone, not to anyone or anything else. Beth Moore, in her book Living Beyond Yourself, says “the key to self-control is the refusal to allow our enemies (the flesh, the world, or Satan) to rule or hold us captive in any way.”  Is there anything in your life that you feel is ruling you, holding you down or making you a prisoner? Beth goes on to say “Christ has given us the victory over our flesh, our world, and our accuser…they cannot presume authority over us. In the life of a believer, they can rule only where they are invited” I think for some of us we need to un-invite some of our desires. We need to take a stand and tell our flesh, the world or Satan, that Christ is in charge of our life and they are no longer welcome.

Take a good look at your life. Are there any broken down walls? Ask God today to help you gain the self-control you need to repair those walls. Remember any area of our life where we do not have control is an open invitation to our enemy. Satan’s weapons are our greatest temptations. When you start to feel tempted, take that temptation captive and give it to God. Ask Him for the strength to overcome that temptation. (1 Corinthians 10:13)

Steps To Victory

Taking a look at Nehemiah 2:1-20 lets look at the steps we need to take to have victory over our enemies and gain the self-control in our lives that we desire.

1. Enlist a few accountability partners. (vs 12)
2. Perform an honest self-examination. In what areas do you lack self-control? (vs 13)
3. Admit that you have experienced internal or external disgrace in your areas of self-indulgence. (vs 17)
4. Don’t put it off any longer. Begin immediately to cooperate with God’s diligent work with you in your areas of captivity. (vs 18)
5. Give it to God, then keep giving it to God over and over until you have overcome. (vs. 20)
(Note: These steps came from Beth Moore’s book, Living Beyond Yourself)

Week 11 Challenge: Target one area of your life this week that you would like to get under control. Ask your Good Morning Girls to pray over you concerning this area. Go through the Nehemiah 2 steps, then give your success over to God.

Remember, you are not alone in your struggles, you are not alone in your failures……we are in the trenches with you……fighting with you…..praying for you!

Love God Greatly!

Led By The Spirit Summer Challenge #12


Week 12 Challenge: Write a letter or send an email to someone who exhibits some or all of the Fruit of the Spirit characteristics in their life. Encourage that individual by telling them all you see in their life, how they are exhibiting the Fruit of the Spirit and being like Christ.

Today I’m concluding our series on The Fruit of the Spirit. Thank you so much for joining me on this weekly journey! I hope you have learned as much these past 11 weeks as I have! My prayer for all of us is that we will take what we have learned and allow God to change us into His image more and more each day.

Brief Overview

Week 1: Stay connected to the vine. In order to grow in our faith and relationship with Jesus, we need to be connected to Him. In John 15:5 Jesus tells us that He is the vine and we are the branches, we need to be connected to Him we do this by being in God’s Word on a daily basis.

Week 2: Love others like Jesus did. Remember that love is an act of obedience, an action, not a feeling. Love those God has placed in your life whether you feel like it or not. By doing so you are honoring God with your obedience and becoming more like Christ.

Week 3: Being joyful and being happy are not one in the same. Being happy depends on your circumstances. Being joyful is in spite of your circumstances. Our salvation is what brings us joy not our circumstances.

Week 4: True peace comes from knowing that God is in control and our future is safe with Him. We must learn to “take every thought captive” and hand our fears over to the one who can conquer our fears. We need to trust that God is in control and our future is safe with Him.

Week 5 & 6: We learned that being patience with others involves forgiving each other of wrong doings, hurt feelings etc. As we respond more patiently with each other we reflect Christ. We also learned that we are not to judge others but to leave the judging up to God. We were reminded that God’s kindness, tolerance and patience leads to people’s repentance.

Week 7: We are reminded to look for ways to be kind to those in our lives. The highest compliment we can receive is to be described as “too nice.”

Week 8: We learned that goodness is putting God’s love for others into action. Acting on God’s nudging, loving others even though we’ve been hurt. We are called to do good to everyone God has placed in our life.

Week 9: Exhibiting faithfulness in our lives means believing in God’s character- He is who He says and believing in God’s promises- He will do what He says. Faithfulness involves pleasing God with our lives by faithfully walking with Him day by day, trusting Him each step of the way.

Week 10: Gentleness involves being obedient and submissive to the will of God in our lives…just like Mary and Jesus did.

Week 11: The key to self-control is the refusal to allow our enemies (the flesh, the world, or Satan) to rule or hold us captive in any way. Because of what Christ did on the cross, so many years ago, we can have victory over these areas……we just need to give them to God, again and again until we overcome them.

Week 12 Challenge: Write a letter or send an email to someone who exhibits some or all of the Fruit of the Spirit characteristics in their life. Encourage that individual by telling them all you see in their life, how they are exhibiting the Fruit of the Spirit and being like Christ.

Please join me again next Monday when I discuss God’s grace in our lives. Our last Monday together for this session will be on August 16th.

Chat with me in the comment section, I’d love to hear what God taught you through this series!

Love God Greatly,

Led By The Spirit Challenge #10 – Gentleness

Week 10 Challenge: This week we will learn gentleness is being submissive to God’s will. Looking at your life, are there any areas in your life where you are resisting God’s will? Ask God to reveal them to you and pray for an obedient heart that desires to do God’s will over your own. As a group, pray for each other in this area of your lives.

“Gentleness has been described as being gentle or meek, being lowly or humble. It is a form of self-control which Christ alone can give and it manifests itself in a submissive spirit toward both God and man.”- Elizabeth George

This morning I’d like to share with you two beautiful stories that illustrate gentleness in action. Both stories I’m sure are very familiar to you, both involve individuals being gentle, submissive and obedient.

The first story is found in Matthew 20, where Jesus is entering Jerusalem… “See, your king comes to you, gentle and riding on a donkey…” Jesus entered the city that would one week later crucify Him, GENTLY…He came riding on a donkey, submitting to His Fathers will for His life and obeying it all the way to the cross. Jesus demonstrates how we are to respond to God’s will for our lives…by submitting to God, obeying God’s will for our lives and responding gently. Jesus did not enter Jerusalem as a warrior ready for battle but as the King who is meek, gentle and peaceful.

Our next story is found in Luke 1, Mary is told that she will be with child, how does this young woman respond? By being humble, she knows her place, “I am the Lords servant.” Then by being obedient, “May it be to me as you have said.” Because of Mary’s obedience there are those who do not look upon her so kindly, some viewed her as an unwed mother and even her fiancé thought of breaking off their engagement. Mary’s obedience to God’s will for her life cost her a lot, yet she continued to obey and did so gently…not lashing out at those who did not believe her innocence.

How Can I Walk In Gentleness?

1. Accept- Accept everything in your life as allowed by God.

2. Pray- Prayer develops the proper posture of gentleness in us- kneeling, submitting to God.

3. Refuse to complain and grumble- To complain, one wise believer notes, “is an accusation against God. It questions God’s wisdom and God’s good judgement. God has always equated complaining with unbelief.”

4. Refuse to manipulate- Let God resolve the issue for you.
(Note these steps came from Elizabeth George’s book: A Woman’s Walk With God)

Jesus and Mary were able to walk in gentleness by submitting to God’s will for their lives and so can we with God’s help.

Week 10 Challenge: This week we will learn gentleness is being submissive to God’s will. Looking at your life, are there any areas in your life where you are resisting God’s will? Ask God to reveal them to you and pray for an obedient heart that desires to do God’s will over your own. As a group, pray for each other in this area of your lives.


Love God Greatly,

Led By The Spirit Summer Challenge #9 Faithfulness

Do you walk with Him?

Week 9 Challenge: As we work on being more faithful in our lives, make a list of areas in your life where you are struggling to be faithful and target one of those areas this week. Some examples might include: tiredness, laziness, hopelessness, procrastination, and apathy just to name a few. Pray over that targeted area and if you feel comfortable, ask your Good Morning Girls to join you in praying over that area in your life for you. Ask God to help you have victory and to show you the steps you need to take in order to do so.

As we move through the Fruit of the Spirit, we have learned that love, joy and peace grow through great sacrifice. When looking at patience, kindness and goodness we learned to treat others the way Jesus did, by doing good to them and putting our love into action. Now we change gears some and instead of focusing on others, we now focus on ourselves, this week dealing with faithfulness in our lives.

“And without faith it is impossible to please God, because anyone who comes to him must believe that he exists and that he rewards those who earnestly seek him” (Hebrews 11:6)

I don’t know about you but I want to be a woman who pleases God and earnestly seeks him. In Hebrews the 11th chapter, the bible says it is impossible to please God without faith. What type of faith pleases God? In Hebrews 11:1 we find out, “Now faith is being sure of what we hope for and certain of what we do not see.” Two words describe faith: sure and certain. These two qualities need a secure beginning and ending point. The beginning point of faith is believing in God’s character- he is who he says. The end point is believing in God’s promises- he will do what he says. When we believe that God will fulfill his promises even though we don’t see those promises materializing yet, we demonstrate true faith. How can you demonstrate true faith right now in your life?

In order to live a faithful life, we need to do these 3 things
* Desire to live a godly life- make that choice and commit to it.
* Look to God- Seek him, go to God in prayer.
* Follow God’s Word- what is God saying to you?

In the Book of Genesis and in Hebrews we read about a man named Enoch. We don’t know a lot about this man, but what we do know is very crucial for understanding what is important to God. Enoch is described as a man who pleased God and a man who walked with God. Enoch is listed right along side Noah, Abraham, Joseph and many others as heroes in the “Hall of Faith.” Obviously pleasing God and walking with God is VERY IMPORTANT! What are some ways you can please God with your faithfulness and walk with him?

Here are a few examples of ways to walk in faithfulness
* Call upon God in prayer. (Psalm 138:3)
* Be faithful in small things. (Luke 16:10)
* Rely on God’s strength. (Philippians 4:13)
* Fight self-indulgence. (1Corinthians 9:27)
* Eliminate laziness and idleness. (Proverbs 31:27)
* Begin at home. (Proverbs 31:27)
* Be faithful in all things. (1 Timothy 3:11)
(Note: these examples came from Elizabeth George’s book, A Woman’s Walk with God)

When I think back to Enoch and how he is described, what I love most is what God loved most about this man. Enoch pleased God and walked with God. Enoch is not described as having any special talents or skills. He wasn’t valedictorian of his high school class and he wasn’t described as a great leader…….no, for the most part he sounds pretty ordinary. What Enoch did well, we can all do well. We can have faith in our God because of who He is and because of His promises. We can please God with our lives by choosing to walk with God daily. That’s what Enoch did and we can do the same.

“By faith Enoch was taken from this life,…before he was taken, he was commended as one who pleased God.” (Hebrews 11:5)

Week 9 Challenge: As we work on being more faithful in our lives, make a list of areas in your life where you are struggling to be faithful and target one of those areas this week. Some examples might include: tiredness, laziness, hopelessness, procrastination, and apathy just to name a few. Pray over that targeted area and if you feel comfortable, ask your Good Morning Girls to join you in praying over that area in your life for you. Ask God to help you have victory and to show you the steps you need to take in order to do so.

Praying for you all this week!

Love God Greatly,

Led By The Spirit Summer Challenge #8 Goodness


Week 8 Challenge: Since last week we focused on showing kindness to someone God has placed in your life, this week I’d like for you to choose someone who has previously hurt you and ask God how you can show goodness to that individual. When God starts nudging you or giving you ways to love on them…….. obey and put your goodness into action! Then leave the results up to God.

This is my dad, he is a man who exhibits goodness. He is a man who has seen hard times, orphaned as a young child, he and some of his brothers were forced to enter an orphanage because they had no one to take them in. Yes, my dad has seen hard times, being half Cherokee and Mexican (he is technically my step-dad but that is a whole different post) he grew-up in an era when it wasn’t okay to be a “half-breed.” He has had people say things to him that would injure anyone to the core. Yes, my dad has seen hard times, volunteering to go to Vietnam to serve his country, experiencing the cruelty of war and accepting God’s salvation in the midst of a battlefield. Yes, my dad has seen hard times, but because of all he has been through he exudes goodness. I have seen him be kind to those who have mistreated him. Don’t get me wrong, my dad is a very strong and brave man, but God has done a mighty work in his life and I just love the fruit of goodness his life produces! He has many reasons to be bitter, to be angry with God, to have unforgiveness in his heart and to seek revenge…but he does non of that, instead he seeks to do good to others. I would love to be more like my dad one day!

1. What is goodness?
Goodness is God working through us to do good to others. Elizabeth George explains it this way, “Goodness follows through on those wonderful thoughts of kindness, thoughts which came when we were praying, caring, noticing and planning to act. Goodness takes the step from good intentions to actively serving others.” Goodness is the end result of patience and kindness. Goodness is putting God’s love for others into action, even being able to love the very ones who have hurt us. God’s goodness can only come from God being active in our lives. God’s goodness is able to overcome evil with good. (Romans 12:21)

2. Choose goodness
Exhibiting goodness is an action and a choice. We have the choice to act on God’s nudging. How do you react when someone hurts you? How do you react when someone disagrees with you? We need to remember we are Christ’s examples to the world! When we are wronged, hurt or disagreed with, we need to remember we represent our Savior. Don’t kid yourself……others are watching. They want to see if this “Jesus” we talk about really makes a difference in our lives. We are called to be a light to the world. To let our light shine before men in such a way they they may see our good works, and catch this………GLORIFY our Father who is in heaven. (Matthew 5:16) We need to choose to allow God to give us His goodness for those who have hurt us. I’ve said this before, we can not do this alone…..it can only be done with God’s help. But we can be victorious over our flesh and not repay insult for insult, but give a blessing instead. (1Peter 3:9)


3. Mission Impossible? Not with God!
In Galatians 6:10 God gives us a special assignment. We are told to do good to ALL PEOPLE, especially to those who belong to the family of believers. Did you catch that? We are to do good to everyone God has placed in our lives, Christians and non-Christians. If God has placed that person in your life then He has a reason for it and you are to do good to that person…..whether they deserve it or not. Looking back, I have failed this assignment at times, but that’s what’s so wonderful about the God we serve. He forgives us. He gives us grace. He allows do-overs.

4. Teach what is good/Do what is good
In Titus 2, Paul tells us to teach what is good to the younger generations as well as set an example by doing what is good. (Titus 2:3 & 7) We are called to be examples to those God has placed in our lives by doing good to them. We first need to start in our homes. Do we do good to our husbands, children and other family members? Our home is our domain, do we do good to all who enter it? If someone is visiting you or working in your home, you have a special opportunity to do good to them and to be a beautiful example to your family. I have personally had the pleasure of opening my home to many different individuals these past few months as we’ve had different projects worked on in our home. I can honestly say, with each guest I have tried my best to do good to them, to pray over them and to be a “light” for my Lord. Again, you never know who is watching and what difference you can make in that individuals life. They are in your life for a reason……even if it’s just a short amount of time. Do good to them!

Week 8 Challenge: Since last week we focused on showing kindness to someone God has placed in your life, this week I’d like for you to choose someone who has previously hurt you and ask God how you can show goodness to that individual. When God starts nudging you or giving you ways to love on them…….. obey and put your goodness into action! Then leave the results up to God.

Please know I’ll be praying for you all this week! I know this can be a very tough assignment…..go to God first in prayer concerning who! Remember…….you are loved!!!!

Love God Greatly,

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