Tag Archives: grace

#30daysofthanksgiving – Day 15 – An Open Letter To My Haters…

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Dear Haters,

Today I am thankful for you.  You make me want to be the best that I can be for Jesus.  I don’t want to ever be seen for what I do but what He does though me.  So when you bring up my past and say you used to be “this way”…well thanks.  That means that I must be so far removed that you must be trying to remind me of who I used to be when I was not making the best decisions or when I used to be selfish.  Yes people,  I was very selfish and I made very stupid decisions.  But when I chose to follow Jesus it was wiped out and every day I am just thankful to have breath in my lungs.

Haters out there remember this:  You don’t have the final say over me.  Christ does.  My past is gone and I’ve been set free.  Grace is real and I’ve found my comfort within Him.  So, when you try to tell me I can’t do this because of this or you used to do this so blah blah blah…well it fuels me.

So, I must be mad at the haters right?  No…I’m way past that.  In fact, I forgive you.  Because my life is not about remembering where I was…it’s about where He wants me to go.  So the same grace that God has given me though His son I now pass onto you.

Stay classy haters and I love you all,

Jimmi

P.S.  This is a letter I have wanted to write for a long time.  It’s not about anyone specific (so don’t get angry if you feel guilty) but I hope and pray that someone understands that when they are up against so much that people can’t hold them back.  God loves us so much and wants us to go so far for Him with our faith.  So keep going friends,  Don’t give up.  NEVER EVER GIVE UP!

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You can’t do this journey alone

Well… I feel like I shot myself in the foot with this one.  I know I post many things on Facebook and Twitter and honestly there is no secret message i’m trying to share with you.  I’m not trying to get something off my chest.  I don’t have a beef with anyone.  All I want to share with people is that God’s grace is real as the nose on your face….unless you had plastic surgery.  

I want to use this post to get some things off my chest. If it does not make sense…ask questions. 

Over the past few days I was working on some content for something  (more on that later) and the main thing behind it was that in this journey of looking for who we really are does not have to be done alone.  For so long I did things alone.  I’m not talking about being away from God but I’m talking about being away from other human beings.  I have gotten better over the past year or so but there are some things that I kept from people.  That’s just not right.  So I want to share two big things that has happened to me in the past 60 days.  

Big Thing #1:  For a long time now I’ve been part of a really great Twitter rally on Tuesday nights called #POTSClive.  Just a beautiful time where people can get together and share their story and go deeper.  Though that outlet I met some really great people and have had the chance to learn so much.  I’ve been stretched beyond my comfort zone.  I found my self praying for each and everyone involved though out the week.  Heck I even have it on my calendar so I don’t ever miss it.  Izzy (my daughter) even knew that on Tuesday nights Daddy has a “meeting on Twitter”.  

#POTSClive is something I always look forward to every Tuesday night and it made everything start to make sense with all that I had been going though.  (divorce, becoming a single dad, work stuff, among other things)

I wanted to give back to this organization.  I wanted to let this organization know what they have done for me. So I chose to contact them to see if I could use the skill-set that God gave me and help spread the message of God’s grace.  Some of you may not have caught on but I work with all things technology.  So because I took a chance and reached out I get to help spread God’s message of grace every Tuesday night via #POTSClive.  I get to help create the same type of content that helped inspire me to live out my grace story.  The questions I get to ask are the same questions I would ask myself.  I’ve also realized that sometimes God requires us to answer some very hard questions to go deeper in our walk with Him.  

Some of you may be like oh big whoop.  So what?  Well I didn’t tell anyone.  I was afraid I would come off as selfish.  In all honesty…I used to be a selfish person.  I used to try and see what was in it for me.  Not in everything but in the things that matters most.  But I was living in fear of things I don’t have control of.  

What does the Word say about this?  

God is love. Perfect love casts out all fear. 1 John 4:18

Boom!  So in all reality….me fearing the worst of people’s reactions is not trusting God.  So I’m done not trusting God.  

So to be clear…God has given me an awesome opportunity to work with People of the Second Chance using the skill set that God has given me to spread the message of God’s love and grace.  

If you are upset you didn’t know…well from the bottom of my heart I’m sorry.  I just let fear get in the way.  

So take example of me…don’t try to do your journey alone.  God didn’t design us to be alone.  So let’s all walk together…let’s walk this journey together. Who’s with me?  

I know I said I had 2 big things to share.  I’ll save the other one for my next post.  Still working though some thoughts on it because it affects more than just me.  

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Who you gonna call?

Italo Calvino said: The more enlightened our houses are, the more their walls ooze ghosts.

We all have a past.  We did things that when we look back on them now…we’re embarrassed, hurt, maybe even ashamed. Those are our ghosts.  They live in the walls of the house we built.  At that point those feelings put us in bondage.

It’s very easy to live in the bondage of our past mistakes.  They cloud the mind like fog clouds a road so you can’t see it.  But that’s it right there…that is what the goal of living in your “ghosts” is.  They want to make the future look so hopeless that it makes it not worth it to continue.  They want to strip you of your self worth.

Here’s the great news… they don’t have to continue to live there rent free.  The memories and the thoughts that we allow to hold our soul hostage has no jurisdiction over the rest of our life.  They can be evicted and told not to come back.  They can be given a pink slip and be told to leave.

The only way of letting this happen is give into the grace that Jesus gave to all of us.  We have to accept that God loved us so much that He sent His son to this earth to die for our sins.  (John 3:16)

I won’t lie to you.  There will be some foot work that needs to be done.  There may be some relationships that you may need to get rid of.  There will still be pain but know you won’t have to go though it all alone.  You will have a family to stand with you.  You won’t have to go though an “extreme home makeover” by yourself at all.

Image credit: “love Don’t live here anymore…” – © 2009 Robb North – made available under Attribution 2.0 Generic

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Open letter response to Starbucks CEO Howard Schultz

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Dear Howard Schlutz,

You can argue that guns are the issue all you want but until we get to the root of the real problem we will always have these situations. We have to look at the heart and help people that are hurting. We have to look at ways to improve the mental health system and end the hurting in people. I say instead of trying to police people and their choices to carry a gun why not give to many projects out there that stand to improve mental health awareness. You probably won’t ever read this but at least I did my part. #mytwocents #starbucks #myopenletter

Photo Credit: http://onlyhdwallpapers.com/nature/coffee-grass-starbucks-desktop-hd-wallpaper-329861/ (careful, website had many popups)

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Book Review: Soul Detox: Clean Living in a Contaminated World by Craig Groeschel

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For a long time I had been looking for a book that helped me make sense of many things going on in my hamster wheel of a brain.  Seriously…my brain does not turn off.  The switch is broken.  But, I think it’s also “START”-ing to get stuck towards awesome mode but that is another book I need to start and share a review on another time.

I got the chance to listen to Craig share his heart about leadership while attending the Catalyst Conference 2012 at Atlanta.  Much of what he shared was amazing to me.  If a man can communicate like he does he sure must write well too.

I was right.

Right away Craig is able to help put focus on everyday behaviors that must be stopped right away.  Not only are some of these behaviors toxic for ourselves but for others as well.  Craig uses his own ideas and thoughts to help make us better people.  Not just that, he is able to help us find where we can find grace for our lives instead of carrying the baggage of yesterday.

Many of us live each day knowing that there are things in our life that are eroding our soul.  These things tear us up on the inside and we don’t even know where to begin.  This book goes though many of those things that we give the control of our lives to and Craig explains in deep detail on what to get the control back and live under God’s grace.

Each chapter not only speaks to not just how we handle ourselves but also the type of people we allow into our lives.  Craig starts with toxic behaviors then moves to the toxic emotions they create then moves to the toxic influences we must avoid. This is not just a book that talks about finding religion but points towards Jesus the entire way.

Thanks to this book I am able to slow the hamster wheel down just slow enough so I don’t get tripped up into my thoughts.  It helped me bring to life some of the emotions that I allowed to imprison me for a long time.  Thanks to Soul Detox I know I can walk each day in God’s grace and know that I can live my second chance that who I was is not who I am.

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