What can I get out of this blog? —

Let’s lay life’s cards out together.

You have made it to the blog where there is no expectation of perfection, no judgment, and all positivity. Take my testimonies and stories of my life and personal experiences, opinions, and suggestions and feel free to apply them to your life. With God by my side and guiding the words I bring to you, He can make an iconic impact on your life and your heart. This is the time to make for you. Relax your mind, read, and enjoy.

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Prayer is the key to a positive mind and heart. —

The greatest way to honor and stay faithful to God is by staying consistent in prayer. This helps strengthen your faith, but most important prayer blesses you endlessly.

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Let’s Read —

These books other than the Bible are some of by my favorites that have guided me, inspired me, and encouraged me.

The Battlefield of the Mind by Joyce Meyer
-This book discusses the battles we face mentally and how to overcome negativity and to focus on God and his greatness.

Wife After God by Jennifer Smith
- This book is a guide and encourages wives to be a wife of God, to help inspire you to be the wife God created us to be. While this is a book, there are questions and scripture that you can make a Bible study out of this.

Fervent by Priscilla Shirer
- This book is based off the movie “War Room” and discusses the strategies on praying not only indefinitely, but specifically for God to receive that genuine prayer you need so you can receive God’s answers and blessings.

The Love Dare Bible Study by Michael Catt, Alex Kendrick, and Stephen Kendrick
- These authors are the creators of the movie Fireproof, a movie that shows the battles you face in marriage and how to take all of those battles and giving them to God. This study is wonderful if building and strengthening your marriage to help you and your spouse to overcome those battles and how to overcome satan’s attacks on marriage.

Almost Making it to Heaven  —

On August 24, 2015 at about 5 pm, I was scheduled for an emergency c-section to give birth to my baby boy, my first child. I had never had surgery before, never given birth before, I had no idea what to expect. I had been in labor all night and had no progression past 5 cm of dilation, not to mention he was almost two weeks late. So c-section it was.

In the process of labor I had two epidurals that both had failed, lasting maybe 15 minutes. Therefore when surgery came to the table, fear flooded my mind. Little did I know that this fear would turn into my reality. It came time to go back to the surgery room where I climbed onto the table myself because the epidurals had failed, I was full functional below the waist. As I’m climbing onto the table, the nurses tell my husband they have to leave the room. Immediately I begin having a panic attack assuming they are not going to allow my husband in the room. I didn’t want to do this alone...so I panicked. I was in such fear I couldn’t even ask questions. That panic attack ended up being so bad that I passed out shortly. Minutes go by while I am unconscious, and during that time of unconsciousness, I start to feel. I remember my eyes being closed, and me feeling the strangest feeling I had ever felt. That strange feeling very quickly turned into the most painful feeling I had ever felt. Immediately I woke up. What I was feeling felt like someone was lighting my abdomen on fire. The sensation was so intense that it felt like my body screaming. Suddenly, I felt a feeling I will never forget. The feeling of the cut. At this moment I realized what was happening. I was feeling the c-section happen. That fire, that screaming pain was the doctor cutting me open. I began screaming in pain, crying for them to stop, begging my husband to make them stop. What was happening was already in process, there was no stopping. They had to finish the procedure to retrieve my son. The anesthesiologist was holding my head trying to calm me and my hysterical husband. In the midst of my screaming I heard the anesthesiologist say to my husband, “I can’t give her anything more, I’ve given too much”. It was then that I had passed out a second time.

When I passed out the first time, I remember nothing. I only remember waking up. This time was very very different. I remember everything, every single detail. I remember myself “waking up”. When I “woke up”, I laid there on that same table, but there was no pain. In fact, there was nothing. I was the only person, the only thing in that room. I looked around trying to figure out where everyone was, what was going on, and what had happened. I took a look to the right of me where I then saw three of the brightest lights I had ever seen. Have you ever been sitting in a room with the windows open, and the sunshine is so bright outside that all you see is white light coming from the windows? That’s what I was seeing. I was amazed by these lights, I couldn’t take my eyes off of them. In such awe of what I was seeing, I reached my hand out to grasp the light. Then I heard a voice without physically hearing it say, “not yet”. And before I could reach the light, I woke up.

I heard my sons cry for the first time, and it was the most beautiful sound I had heard. I was sobbing hysterically, but not from the pain anymore. I was hysterical by the sound of my son, and by the realization of what I had just seen. I looked at my husband and he kept calling for me saying, “Kourtney...come on honey listen for Brayden...listen for Brayden.” The only thing I could say was “oh my gosh...”.

Time passes by and I am closed up and sent off to my room. It took an hour of calming me down and medication to ease the pain and me in general. After having calmed down and finally holding my baby boy, I was able to ponder on what I had seen. It sent me to tears. The reality of what had happened was I was dying giving birth to my son. When I thought I woke up, I hadn’t. Those lights I was seeing, those were angels. And that voice telling me it wasn’t time, that was God.

To this day telling that story leaves me trembling simply because not only was I physically dying, but I was so close to making it to heaven. A woman who was full of sin, newly christian at the time, almost made it to heaven. I had the honor of seeing that what I believed was true. What I believe is real. That moment of my life changed me forever and inspired my faith. I obtained evidence that only so many people have lived to share their experience. That is the most honorable feeling as a Christian for me.

Death in the process on Earth was painful for me, but in that moment of going to heaven, there was no pain, no panic, not questions asked. Just peace, trust, and the overwhelming feeling of amazement.

God is with you always. Jesus never leaves your side. And I can testify for my faith that it is real, my God never fails, and I can’t wait to finally see His face one day.

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My Testimony of Accepting Christ —

I remember being a small child around three attending a church in Navasota, TX. Those memories are vague due to the fact that I was so small. My family and I went often, I even remember my mother’s baptism. I can’t remember when we stopped going, but those times of Sunday school did come to an end for years to come.

As I grew older, I always questioned what exactly God was. I didn’t know who He was other than knowing people worshipped Him and believed that He was the creator of heaven. I knew who Jesus was, but never KNEW Him. The thought of Jesus and God being two different beings confused me. Christians worshipped Jesus because He died on the cross, but they also worshipped God. I was ignorant to the understanding of the concept of what being a Christian was.

My teenage years came where I grew to be independent in my own form. I was a broken child who was lost. I was in a broken home that wasn’t physically broken yet, I held responsibilities that were too heavy to carry, and I had no one who could relate to me let alone listen. I turned that confusion of Christianity into almost hate. I saw kids in my school who devoted their lives to this imaginary person who you couldn’t touch, couldn’t hear, and couldn’t see. Yet their lives were so full of life, joy, love and happiness. I was so envious of their spirit. The envy I had became jealousy and that jealousy became hatred. I hated Christians. I hated their happiness. I hated their willingness to worship and serve what I though was so ridiculous. I believed in science and nothing more and if you believed in this God, you were a fool. I hated everything. My life, myself, my surroundings, my choices, my addictions, everything. I turned to self harm to just feel something, to see if I was numb. I turned to drugs and alcohol at such a young age to feel some of that joy and excitement I envied so much. The higher I got the less I cared. The more drunk I got, the happier I was. I took these addictions and used them in my every day life to feel something. To fulfill the emptiness in my soul. So I thought.

Years of tearing myself down occurred. Every single day, every chance I got, doing whatever I had to do to pay for these addictions. I was 17 years old working two jobs, going to school full time, providing, and supplying. I had friends, but I typically didn’t have the mental capability to speak to anyone in a proper manner. I was a broken person wrapped around satan’s finger. I attempted suicide, I contemplated on how I was going to die and tried to even plan it out to the time and place where I would not fail my attempt. I never did follow through.

On April 9, 2014 I met this boy named Phillip. Phillip was this tall, handsome, baseball playing, jeep driving, sweet talking guy who was a stranger. I met him on an online dating website that I had just for fun. I received the cheesiest message from him before I planned on deleting the site from my phone. He was so cheesy, that I had no choice but to give him a chance. Little did I know that from that day on, my life would change forever. Phillip and I dated for several months. We spent every waking moment we had together. We were simply inseparable. We were no perfect match though. Phillip was a Christian as well as his entire family. I was an atheist who smoked, drank, partied, and had no morals. I was what would typically be shunned by Christians. Of course his family didn’t know I was the way I was, but I certainly knew the drastic difference between us. Phillip’s mother and father both always spoke of God, Jesus, blessings, prayer, and church. Majority of the time I would I tune them out while respectfully letting them believe what they wanted and not judging. Every once in a while though I would listen.

Phillip’s family began to invite to me church. I wanted to be with the boy who I was absolutely head over heels for at all costs, even if it meant sitting in a church. I remember my first time going to church; I was scared. I told Phillip, “If I step foot in that church I will light on fire”. He just shook his head and giggled. We would go quite often and I would sit through services patiently. The more I attended church with him and his family, the more I would listen to the sermons. The words that the pastor would say suddenly started to make sense and I was able to understand where usually these words were foreign. I grew curious, began asking questions about who Jesus was and His story. I wanted to know what Christians believed in and why. I wanted to know why these people were so obsessed with God. I needed physical and factual proof to even question what I believed. I began doing research by watching YouTube videos, reading articles and testimonies, and asking Phillip and his family questions. I was searching for something I had hated for so long, but why?

One night while in my room, I had been watching YouTube videos on what Christianity was. In one of the videos I watched, the creator started to talk about this movie “The Passion of the Christ”. I had Netflix, so I decided to just shoot my shot and see if the movie happened to be on there. And sure enough, it was. I made the decision to open my mind and watch the movie in hopes I would find the answers I was looking for as I was a “seeing is believing” type of person. I watched that movie from beginning to end. I did not once take my eyes off of the screen, not even to check my phone. I watched the movie thoroughly and closely. I saw who Jesus was, I saw what He had done, I saw a form of love I had never seen before, and I had finally understood who Jesus was and His story. Seeing Jesus suffer broke me. Seeing Him die on the cross left me absolutely speechless, and seeing Him rise again sent me to tears. I sobbed and sobbed harder than I ever have. That was the very first time I felt condemned and felt God’s presence. I surrendered for the first time. I took all of that hate, frustration, anger, pain, brokenness, shame, my addictions, my whole life and surrendered it all to God without a second of hesitation. I could finally see the truth. I finally knew why all those kids in my school were full of such joy, I finally knew why people worshipped God and praised Jesus, I finally felt a sense of genuine and unconditional love for the first time in my entire life. It was the most overwhelming feeling I had ever experienced. I prayed for the first time. I prayed to God and told Him I was so sorry for being so ignorant all this time. I begged God to forgive me for hating Him, I begged God to forgive me for all of my sins, I begged him to take away my addictions, I begged him to take my life and turn it into what He wanted for me. In that moment of prayer I felt free, as light as a feather, and genuinely happy. I was so overwhelmed with joy that all I could do was cry. I called Phillip and told him I had just surrendered my life to God. He was so excited and happy for me that he went and told his mom. My life from then on was changed for all eternity. I was saved!

Did I face obstacles after accepting Christ into my heart? Absolutely. Satan was not happy that he had lost me. He hated that I gave my heart to God and tried over and over to take me back. Once you have God on your side though, satan doesn’t stand a chance. From that day on I was blessed in more ways that my mind could have ever dreamed. That cheesy boyfriend turned into my husband, who then gave me a beautiful baby boy who is our son. That broken girl turned into a woman of God who dedicates her life to Him and worships and praises Jesus indefinitely, and even volunteers at that same church. I obtained a family who supported my walk with Christ and showed me love that is so Christ-like. I received the gift of friendship, opportunity, love, and an ever lasting life with God. I was baptized and saved, so I can spend eternity in heaven with my Lord and Savior one day. I went from thinking Christians were fools to being crazy about God. To teaching my son about the Lord and taking him to church every single week. To sharing my testimony in hopes of bringing not only other people to Christ, but bringing the blessing of the Lord’s presence to them. And you want to know what’s crazy? I’m only getting started!

Dear Heavenly Father,
I thank you for never giving up on me God. I didn’t deserve your love, your grace and protection, yet you never left my side and fought for me. You love me so much that you took all of my sin and threw it away like it never existed. You took a broken life and mended me together with the love of your son Jesus Christ who died on that cross for ME. You are the almighty Father, King of Kings, the greatest blessing I’ll ever receive. God, you are amazing and perfect in all your ways. And I will serve you here on your earth, and in heaven. I love you, Lord. Thank you for blessing me endlessly.

It’s in your son’s name I pray.
Amen

Don’t Drown

Joshua 1:9

The stereotype created for Christians is that we are the happiest, most successful, carefree, positive, and just “has it all together” kind of people. The keyword in that is “stereotype”. We are human. As humans with functioning feelings and emotions, we have our downfalls. I am not always the happiest person on the planet. I am not always positive, carefree, worry free even though I truly wish I could be. But that wouldn’t be normal. It is ok to not be ok sometimes.

There are days where Satan attacks, and as Christians that is going to happen because Satan is here to steal, kill and destroy. I sometimes can be perfectly fine, and then all of a sudden be slammed with this feeling of fear, being overwhelmed, doubt, and even sadness. Whether it’s feeling like I am failing as a mother, failing as a wife, a daughter, a daughter in law, a granddaughter, an aunt, a friend, you name it. Sometimes it’s a feeling of “I can’t keep up”, or “I can’t do this anymore”. We sometimes question when we will finally catch a break. That’s when God comes in to scoop me off my feet, dust me off, and hold my head up to remind me “hey, I’m still here and I still love you”.

There are things I have done in my life that make me doubt my worthiness of being a Christian and to face Christ one day. That’s Satan’s favorite attack on me. God’s favorite come back is making satan leave and reminding me that I am worthy of His love. God created us all individually one by one, so perfectly divine in His eyes. Every flaw we think we have is what God see’s as gems. If we could only see in ourselves what God see’s, there would be no doubt, depression, and fear. Look at yourself in a mirror. Truly take the time to look at yourself, every detail about you. What you see in your reflection is greatness, strength, heart, and reason. You were created to be on this Earth for God’s reason. To show the world what an amazing gift you are from Him. Every time you take a breath, feel your pulse, feel that thumping of your heart from your chest, that is the precious life God has given you.

You can do this. You are worthy of God’s love. You are strong. You are powerful. You are loved. You are protected. You are cherished. You are important. You are amazing at all that you do because God chose YOU. God chose you and only you to be YOU. Be who you were created to be and live your precious life to very fullest.

Father,
I pray over whoever is reading this right now. I pray that you take those negative thoughts or feelings and remove them from their heart Lord so they can see your light of love. I pray that you show them they are worthy of your love and remind them that the life you have given them is so precious to you. Thank you Lord for blessings us all with the gift of your grace and mercy God for even when we feel we don’t deserve it. You are a good good father Lord and your love is so precious to us.

Amen

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