When You Don't Know What To Do

What do we do when we don’t know what to do?  How do we win the battles life throws us into?  

Success leaves clues and we find them in the story of King Jehoshaphat whose country is about to be attacked by foreign armies.  (2 Chron 20)

Alarmed, he “resolved to inquire of the Lord” (20:3) praying “For we have no power to face this vast army that is attacking us.  We do not know what to do, but our eyes are upon You.” (20:12). 

Instead of focusing on circumstances he focused his attention on God seeking an answer and it came via a man named Jahaziel who said “Listen, King Jehoshaphat . .  this is what the Lord says to you.  Do not be afraid or discouraged for this vast army FOR THE BATTLE IS NOT YOURS BUT GOD’S.” (20:15) 

“You will not have to fight this battle, take up your positions, stand firm and see the deliverance the Lord will give you. . . . Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged. Go out to face them tomorrow and the Lord will be with you.” (20:17) 

“Have faith in the Lord your God and you will be upheld . . . (20:20)

Within this story is our battle plan when we face hard choices, not sure where to turn, are discouraged, stuck, confused or frustrated, experience loss or are wounded by others.

Jehoshaphat realized his problems were too big for him but not for his God and neither are ours.

In faith he tells God “ . . . You will hear us and save us.”  (20:9) 

He cried out to God for help and God showed up reminding Jehoshaphat this battle wasn’t his but his Heavenly Father’s.

He then commanded Jehoshaphat to “take up your positions, stand firm and see the deliverance the Lord will give you (20:17).  

God also told him to boldly “Go out to face them”because “the Lord will be with you.” (20:17).

God didn’t tell Jehoshaphat to deny or fear the circumstances but to face them reminding him he wasn’t alone in his fight and neither are we.  

God also didn’t make Jehoshaphat’s problems disappear but instead used them to show Jehoshaphat His power, His protection and His presence.  

So what “positions” were Jehoshaphat and his people to take? I believe it was Worship.  

Jehoshaphat “appointed men to sing to the Lord and praise him . . .  and they went out at the head of the army saying “Give thanks to the Lord for His love endures forever” (20:21).  

Instead of picking up their swords, these men fought with the weapon of worship. 

While they were worshiping, their God was fighting for them and “the Lord set ambushes against the men . . .  and they were defeated.” (20:22)

By trading their worry for worship and putting praise before the problem, God solved the problem and He will do the same for us.  

God fought and won while they worshipped and praised Him. 

By trading our worry for worship, we move our focus from the problem to the Problem Solver allowing Him to fight for us as He did for Jehoshaphat.  

I don’t know what battles you may be fighting today but I do know you aren’t alone and “this battle is not yours, but God’s.” (20:15).  

He sees, He knows and He cares.   He loves you unconditionally and will fight for you.  

And one more thing – after the worship came the blessings (20:24-25), joy (20:27) peace and rest. (20:30)

Sandra Hubbard

Week 8 – We Listen

Have you ever noticed how loud life seems to be sometimes? 

Traffic, tv commercials and social media are constantly screaming for our attention. 

What if we turned down life and really began to listen?

In week 8 of 52 Weeks of Chic we practice the Art of Listening.  

Listening is a critical part of our overall wellbeing.  It asks us to turn down the noise, silence the distractions, be still and quiet with just ourselves. 

For years I found it impossible to be alone or still for any lengthy amount of time. 

When not surrounded by others I needed my phone and/or tv on “for the noise” or to be busy doing something or going somewhere because deep down I was afraid of what the silence might bring. 

I have met other women who also avoided silence or being alone.

Years pass without many of us ever really knowing what we want from life because finding out might include hearing painful truths or facing fears.

It’s easier to mindlessly do what everyone else is doing and hope for the best.

However when we take time to listen, our desires and goals will begin to surface.  We will never get what we want if we never take time to find out what we want. 

Listening to our bodies informs us of her health status, when she’s exhausted or sick, in need of self-care or medical attention. 

Listening improves conversation. So often we begin formulating our response while others are talking and fail to really understand them because we didn’t fully give their words our attention. 

Listening reveals the beauty of this playground we call earth.  

When walking in nature I would have music blaring in my ears until one day when I forgot my earbuds and was forced to listen to nature instead.  

I never knew there was a symphony playing – rustling leaves, running brooks and songbirds.

Listening reveals our beliefs allowing us to embrace encouraging, helpful thoughts while tossing those that keep us stuck, angry or defeated because we choose our thoughts, they don’t choose us.   

Listening encourages our spirits, protects our health, cultivates stronger relationships and teaches us truths.

Learning to listen is like any other art form requiring practice, patience and discipline and this week we focus on LISTENING. 

So I encourage you to turn off, log out, get still, be quiet and listen.  

Listen to your heart, to your dreams, to nature, to the silence and to the Lord.  

Listen to understand, for inspiration, instruction, encouragement and truths.  

Just listen.

Sandra Hubbard

 

Everyday A Gift

Today is God’s gift to us.

This past weekend I had the joy of attending our grandson’s third birthday party in Kentucky. 

He is without a doubt pure, walking sunshine.   If happiness had a face it would be his!

On the way over we noticed traffic at a complete standstill on the other side of the interstate and eventually saw the remains of a horrific accident.   

According to local news reports, ongoing construction had halted traffic.  

A semitrailer was stopped as was the car behind it.  Sadly the driver of a truck following the car didn’t realize traffic was stopped and forcefully slammed the car into the backend of the tractor trailer tragically killing three.

The images haunted me all weekend and on the way home I learned more about those deceased.  A grandmother, grandfather and their two year old grandson walked into eternity that day.   

I have witnessed accidents before but this one shook me to my core as I suddenly understood the brevity of life.  

Each morning God places in our hand His gift of one more day.

The gift of today doesn’t come with a guarantee of tomorrow and I sadly wonder how many “todays” I have taken for granted as I squandered precious time on matters that in the grand scheme of life was meaningless – worrying, angry, ungrateful – moments I allowed to mar the gift.

Today I mourn for a family I never knew who taught me perhaps one of life’s most valuable lessons and that is that each day is a gift, unearned and unmerited.     

Please know I am not trying to depress anyone.  

But I am pleading with us all to fully grasp this beautiful experience called Today and never take it or others for granted.

This family had names – the Brashers from Sardis and their two year old grandson Benjamin.  In a split second their families were forever changed.  

A mom will never see her son graduate or become a husband or father.  A daughter lost her mom and her child in an instant. A grandfather will never take his grandson fishing or throw a baseball with him because those tomorrows will never become todays.  

Let us step back from the busyness of life for a moment and appreciate this moment called Today.   

Don’t delay your happiness or dreams waiting for “one day when” because now is the time and today is the day.

Yes today is the day to hug tighter, love harder, laugh more, forgive, apologize, say thank you, appreciate the little things, slow down and savor moments, call loved ones to say “hello” and maybe just log off for a while and live life in real time because once Today is gone, she never returns.  

How I regret the time I killed and the energy I wasted stressing, worrying, angry or turning mole hills into mountains that stole so many of my Todays.

This morning God has placed in our hands His most cherished and valuable creation and that is Time only asking that we treasure it for the priceless gift it is and steward it wisely.  

I also ask that you remember this precious family in your prayers in the days ahead as they grieve an unimaginable loss.  

Sandra Hubbard

Be Bold Be Kind Be You 

Week 7 – We Connect

This week we focus on creating connections.

Often women tell me they are craving connection and often feel “connection starved” as social media has become their main source of community replacing face-to-face conversation.

Social media was never intended to be our primary source of communicating. 

Hours scrolling through the lives of others is a cheap imitation of connection leaving us feeling lonelier and more isolated than ever. 

I once believed my world would fall apart or I would miss out if I logged off, let the laundry wait or didn’t get everything done on my to-do list to scheduled time with friends.

I was wrong. 

My world didn’t fall apart and my home didn’t turn to chaos.  

In fact, I began to appreciate my world more.

Connection with friends empowered and energized me.  

Do you have a friend you haven’t talked with in a while? Schedule a lunch, coffee or after-work meet up.

Want to meet new friends? Join a small group, attend networking events or volunteer.

And if you meet someone you want to get to know better make it happen.

I met someone in January  and immediately knew she was someone I wanted to know. 

She was positive, ambitious, disciplined and energetic – all traits I admire – so I invited her for coffee. Three hours later I knew I had met a kindred spirit and came away motivated to step up my game, raise my standards and dream bigger.

It is easy to get consumed with “busyness” convinced we simply don’t have the time to invest in connecting with others but in reality we can’t afford not to.

This week commit to creating time with friends, either by scheduling a lunch, meeting after work or going for coffee and make Connection a priority.

Seek out opportunities to connect with old friends and new ones.

Cultivating connections not only betters us individually but also as a community but it only happens when we connect.

Sandra Hubbard: Christian Inspirational Speaker/Writer/Instructor

PeaceMaker or PeaceBreaker

Which one are you?   It’s a hard question to answer if we’re being honest.

Why does it even matter?  Because it’s the difference in living a blessed life or one filled with scarcity and drama. 

It isn’t always easy to be the peacemaker.  One can only do so much. 

Paul knew this well when he wrote “If possible, so far as it depends on you, live peaceably with everyone.” Rom 12:18  

So while we can’t control our co-worker’s actions, the cashier’s attitude, rude waiters or others’ hurtful words we can control our reactions “so far as it depends” on us, it is our responsibility.  

As unfair as it feels, their bad behavior is not permission for us to behave badly as well.   

Hey, I get it.  In our hurt we want to lash out and speak our minds. 

But, have you ever noticed The Golden Rule of “Doing unto others as you would have them do unto you” comes with no guarantee? It never says “and they actually will.” Matt 7:12

Being helpful, giving, understanding or forgiving because that’s what we want from others doesn’t mean that’s what we are going to get.  That’s out of our control. 

“As you would have them do unto you” means you give what you want to receive with no guarantees of getting it back.  

So, what’s the difference between a peace maker and a peace breaker?

A peace maker recognizes gossip as assumed, potentially hurtful truths so she refuses to share it.   

A peace breaker freely passes on rumors regardless of its peace-disrupting potential or truthfulness.

“A gossip separates close friends.” Prov 16:28

“Keep your tongue from evil and your lips from telling lies.” Ps 34:1

The peace maker upholds her promise to keep a secret and remains quiet.  

The peace breaker promises not to tell yet shares the secret at the first opportunity. 

I meet many women who struggle to develop meaningful friendships because their trust has broken and trust is hard to regain once it’s been violated. 

A peace maker thinks before acting when blindsided with ugly words or behavior, remaining in control of her emotions instead of allowing temporary anger to permanently destroy a relationship or wreck her day.  

A peace breaker in a fit of momentary hurt loses her self-control and reacts giving no thought to the fall-out awaiting her once the moment has passed.  

Words spoken (or texted) cannot be retrieved. 

Better a patient (in control) person than a warrior, someone with self control than one who takes a city. Prov 16:32

Self-control is just that powerful! 

The peace pursuing woman gains access into God’s presence enjoying rich blessings and fellowship with Him. 

Blessed are the peacemakers for they shall be called the children of God. Matt 5:9

Being a peace maker or peace breaker is a daily choice.

Creating a peaceful life means consciously choosing to pursue each moment from a place of peace.  

By refusing to spread the rumor or discuss the friend or co-worker when they aren’t around we promote peace.

By keeping the secret, not replying to every negative social media post or comment, staying silent when the cashier has attitude and not giving the stink-eye to the bad driver who cut us off we promote peace. 

Today let us pursue peace in a world so desperately in need of it.   

Because we are peace makers.

Sandra Hubbard

Week 6 – We Take Action

The Power of “Positive-Impact Action” 

In January we excitedly chose our Word of the Year and created a detailed, written picture of “that woman” in our journals brainstorming ways we could embody that word. 

Now what?  

This week we focus on taking “Positive-Impact Action” (PIA) to create the results we want.   

Positive-Impact Actions are doable actions that transform our ideas of how life could be into reality.  

Every woman I know wants something – to do something and/or become something. 

Be it losing weight, landing a promotion, meeting her soulmate, starting a side business, being debt free, learning a new skill, traveling or simply getting her home organized, we all have desires.   

She may want to become healthier, more elegant, disciplined, focused, optimistic, energetic, positive, stylish, fun, grateful or calm  – the possibilities are endless. 

But without effective actions she remains stuck, frustrated and discouraged.

Last year my word was “disciplined” because the lack of it showed in every area of my life. 

Consistency and structure were missing as I had no “stick-to-it-ness” whatsoever.    

After choosing “discipline” I created specific goals that could only be achieved with discipline then brainstormed Positive-Impact Actions each goal needed to be achieved. 

For example, I adore the world of personal development, growing and evolving as a woman, but felt “stagnant” (due to lack of discipline) so I decided to read 52 motivational books in 52 weeks that would inspire growth. I then brainstormed actions needed to accomplish this.  

1) Get a library card (one of my wisest investments) 2) Schedule time to read daily even if it meant not doing everything on my to-do list that day 3) Read areas I held a strong interest (leadership, women’s entrepreneurial studies, inspirational biographies) but remain open to other topics  4) Give myself permission to quit any book I found boring which happened often and  5) Celebrate when I reached this goal – and this is critical. 

I have never seen a team win who didn’t celebrate when they win so girl when you win Celebrate!

Without a goal that required commitment and consistency along with creating specific Positive-Impact Actions I would never learned the art of discipline.  

Lack of discipline was my story for years. Start then quit.  

WHO or WHATever your desire may be, set goals along with Positive-Impact Actions that will result in achievement.  

Whether your word is “confidence” “abundance” “adventurous” “simplicity” “fun” “healthy” “community” “optimistic” or “transformed” seek out opportunities to embody that word.  

By creating goals then taking Positive-Impact Action, it is only a matter of time until you are that woman!

Vision boards, affirmations and daily writing your goals are wonderful but until Positive-Impact Actions are taken, they will never be realized.  

Look at your Word of the Year and/or your goals then take actions that will have you celebrating at this year’s end! 

Sandra Hubbard 

Shake It Off

A sailing trip that began smoothly ended up a shipwreck on the island of Malta.

The cool night breeze demanded a fire so Paul “gathered a pile of brushwood and as he put it on the fire, a viper, driven out by the heat, fastened itself to his hand.” (Acts 28:4)

When the friendly islanders saw the snake dangling from his hand they assumed “This man must be a murderer for though he escaped the sea, Justice has not allowed him to live.” (Acts 28:4)

But Paul shook the snake off into the fire and suffered no ill effects. 

The islanders expected him to swell up or suddenly fall dead but “after waiting a long time and seeing nothing unusual happen to him decided he was a god.” (Acts 28:5-6)

From Genesis to Revelation, the Bible refers to Satan as the “Serpent.”  

“Now the serpent was more crafty than any of the wild animals God had made.” (Gen 3:1) 

“That ancient serpent called the devil or Satan, who leads the whole world astray” (Rev 12:9)

A venomous snake has just latched on to Paul biting him with all his might.  

Paul should’ve been terrified and could have died but neither happened. 

He simply shakes the serpent off and moves on.  No panic, fear or flinching.   

No attempts to reason with, understand, communicate with or ask the serpent  “why?”    

Acts 28: 1-6 is a textbook case of how knowledge and faith in God’s Word kills the enemy.  It’s “Defeating the Enemy 101.”

Paul was a man educated in the scriptures.  (Heb 3:5) 

He knew that “no weapon formed against you shall prosper.” (Isa 54:17)

“You will tread upon the lion and the cobra, you will trample the great lion and the serpent.” (Ps 91:13) and “In your Name we trample our enemies.” (Ps 44:5) 

For most, a deadly snake bite would evoke uncontrollable panic but Paul knew God’s Word said he would trample the snake and he does with a swift flick of his wrist.

No serpent was going to keep him from fulfilling the calling on his life.  

Satan comes to steal, kill and destroy (John 10:10) but his attempts on Paul’s life failed that night because Paul’s actions said “No devil, not today!”  

No debate or discussion. 

Satan’s venom is filled with fears and poisonous lies shrouded in distorted truth because he knows doubt, unbelief and deceit are faith killers, joy stealers and destiny destroyers.  (Gen 3:1-5) 

“Girl, you have always tried to (fill in the blank___and never have.  What makes you think you can now?”  “You have always been ____.” 

“It’s just who you are, in your family, the way it is.” 

“You can’t” “What if you fail” “You aren’t ____ enough.” “Your sin is too great or your mess too messy to be forgiven, for you to be healed, restored or loved.”   

All lies.  

Even Christ calls Satan “a liar and the father of lies” proclaiming that lies are his “native language”  (John 8:44)  

So whatever Satan is telling you is a lie – always has been and always will be.  

James tells us to “resist the devil and he will flee from you.”  (4:7). 

Paul’s slinging off the serpent is equivalent to us swinging the “sword of the Spirit which is the Word of God” (Eph 6:17) and that is how we shake off the serpent that is Satan.   

Interestingly, Paul never suffered a single symptom of the snakebite. 

His faith in God’s Word provided the antidote which will always render the enemy’s venom powerless.  

Never listen to Satan and “resist” giving him your attention.  Don’t allow him to linger in the sacred space of your mind for even a second. 

Don’t try to reason with him and absolutely do not fear him.  He thrives on fear, chaos and drama.  

Quickly and firmly shake him off with Scripture because while our words may not scare Satan, rest assured he is terrified of the active, alive, sharp, powerful Words of his Creator – God Almighty.  (Heb 4:12)   

No Devil. Not today!

Sandra Hubbard – Christian Speaker/Writer/Teacher

Week 5 – Our Table of Excellence

This week we are creating the ultimate party list of those we want sitting at our  Table of Excellence, that intimate space consisting of those who influence us most. 

As much as we want to be friends with everyone, not everyone needs to be our friend and because we become who we spend the most time with, we must choose wisely.  

Today we take a hard look at our friendships and their impact on our well being, spiritually, emotionally and mentally.

I get that we all have bad days and being supportive of our friends during those times is an honor.

However, if the friendship drains us or has us developing less than desirable habits (gossiping, complaining, excessive drinking, drama, reckless spending, etc) then as difficult as it might be, for the sake of our future we vacate her seat at our Table otherwise we will become her without ever even realizing it.  

I have been there ya’ll.  I have had those friends and sad to admit I have been that friend and hold no grudge against those who quietly vacated my seat at their Table in times past.

We all have full schedules and the time we have to spend with friends is limited so let’s seek out women who embody traits we desire and inspire us to step up our game. 

This is your Table of Excellence and you get to choose who is invited to occupying that valuable seat.  

There are people who sat at your table in 2019 who do not need to be still sitting there in 2020. 

So who are you inviting to your Table of Excellence? 

Sandra Hubbard 

Growing in the Wild

It’s unbearably hot, dry, desolate and lonely, a scary place with no signs of life on the horizon. 

Spiritual growth is non-existent, circumstances are dire and despair is overwhelming.  

But for God’s grace, death would be imminent.  

The Israelites were living their worst nightmare with long days and sleepless nights in a dangerous desert filled with uncertainty.

This vast wilderness was home to God’s children for many discouraging years after departing Egypt. 

Their actions and reactions during their wilderness journey revealed me to myself in ways I am not proud of.  

They complained and whined at the harsh living conditions and doubted God though His presence was evident with a cloud, fire, manna, quail and water.  

Wild, ferocious animals never ventured into the camp because His protection surrounded them.  

And as if their griping and doubting wasn’t hurtful enough to Him, they turned from Him choosing to worship a worldly, cheap imitation god instead of the God who had provided and protected them time and time again. 

Forty years of countless miracles, protection and provision came and went without any experience of spiritual or personal growth. 

You would think they would emerge from the desert with astounding faith, maturity, wisdom and knowledge gained from having a front row seat to incredible miracles but it never happened.

It’s easy to sit back and judge the Hebrew children.

How is it that they repeatedly witnessed God’s love, His faithfulness and miraculous displays in the worst of conditions and never learned to trust Him?

Until one day God kindly pointed out I was just like them.   

Oh the truth hurts . . . but as I often say, it also heals!

In my wilderness moments I conveniently forgot all the times God intervened when I was drowning in messy circumstances, many of my own making.   

All those past miracles were forgotten the minute I found myself back in the wilderness.  

It was much easier to blame and complain while stubbornly intent on handling the mess my way even though my way wasn’t working and never had. 

One morning after a throwing a spiritual hissy fit about my current undesirable circumstances wondering why I wasn’t experiencing any progress He boldly, clearly and firmly replied “My daughter, if you cannot grow in your wilderness you will never be able to grow on your mountaintop.” 

Ouch! He was right. 

And THIS was a turning point in my life.  

Those wilderness struggles I whined over were actually opportunities to create spiritual and emotional growth and learn life-changing lessons.

When we choose to look for those lessons,  express gratitude for our blessings instead of focusing on what we lack and remember the countless times God rescued us even though He didn’t have to, we become wiser and stronger,  spiritually and emotionally mature.

The wilderness becomes a proving ground for promotion and prosperity.

But if we cannot grow in our wilderness we will never be able to grow on our mountaintop. 

Sandra Hubbard

Week 4 – We Upgrade

Who doesn’t love an upgrade?  

Whether it is going from coach to first class or a plain hotel room to the presidential suite, upgrades move us from the mediocre to the magnificent and the boring to the beautiful.

2020 is the year of the upgrade.

This week we begin replacing the average with the absolute highest quality and excellence.   

Beginning with our internal world or mindset, today we consciously begin tossing the “crap-thoughts” that leave us feeling defeated replacing them with life-giving beliefs that result in success because a negative mind will never produce a positive life. 

Life is simply a reflection of the mind.

Those “I’m a failure,” “I can’t do this” “I am so stupid, fat, ugly, unlovable, etc” thoughts only produce failure, zero confidence and no self-worth just like we believed. 

Emotions like thoughts are a choice meaning we get to choose our emotions – angry, bitter or resentful or happy, forgiving, positive and loving.  Our choice. 

We are also going to be renovating our external world.

Let me be clear – without an internal upgrade an external upgrade won’t make much difference.  An exquisite life begins with an exquisite mind. 

From health and relationships, thoughts and beliefs, personal and spiritual growth as well as our surroundings and possessions we begin tossing the cheap, broken dated, expired, unused and unhealthy to create space for only the finest.

However, if you upgrade nothing else this year, commit to upgrading your mind and health because both functioning at maximum levels result in incredible energy, happiness and productivity. 

Personal and spiritual growth results in an upgraded mind and begins with investing our precious time.  

Hours spent scrolling social media or watching junk tv are replaced with reading or listening to informative, quality, inspirational material that fires up our faith and and determination. 

Any area you seek growth in (health, finances, spirituality etc) there are books, blogs, videos and sermons available if you are willing to commit your time.  

You will always be your best investment so this week focus on ways you can invest in you.  

Quality health requires quality foods, portion control, ample hydration, exercise you enjoy (walking, gym etc) and understanding the difference between genuine hunger and emotional eating.   

Processed foods (hello Doritos), dehydration, eating on the run or eating our emotions (using food to numb negative emotions instead of addressing issues) results in weight gain, mental fog, guilt, low self-esteem and lethargy.  

Schedule time to detox your fridge/pantry replacing processed foods with produce, schedule exercise, invest in a water bottle, resolve any issues that normally have you reaching for the cookies, set some lofty but attainable goals and crush them! 

Quality relationships leave us inspired and energized instead of emotionally drained and we become who we spend the most time with. 

This year seek out those living the life you want and watch your life transform. 

Let me say the “finest” of material possessions doesn’t mean expensive or require going into debt.  

For costly items you deeply desire save for it and reward yourself paying cash for your purchase.  However many high quality items come without the high price tag.   

Let’s replace our dated, cheaply made, “never wear it” clothing with quality pieces we feel gorgeous in that reflects our unique style.

In 2020 we are upgrading our surroundings.  

From cars to closets we allow only the necessary, the beautiful and the quality items to remain. 

Clean, organized spaces allow us to breathe, regroup and relax – the benefits of upgrading.  

If you lack in organizational or decluttering talents, simply contact me and I will connect you with women who thrive in those areas and would be happy to assist you as you upgrade and refine your environment. 

So, let’s begin today creating a first class mind and a first class life because we are first class!

Sandra Hubbard – Christian Speaker/Writer/Teacher/Life Coach 

Heart Sick

My goal with The Chic Creative is to empower, inspire and educate women in spiritual and personal growth with complete honesty and authenticity.

2019 was an incredible year but it wasn’t without difficulties.  

I battled daily with what I now know are “heart issues.”   

I spent years living with deeply embedded hurt and resentment that consumed me. During this time I suffered with ongoing physical exhaustion, bodily aches and extreme mental fatigue but didn’t know why.  

Although I was exercising regularly, getting plenty of sleep and hydration nothing improved.  I overhauled my diet, consulted my doctor, invested in nutritional supplements and still fought extreme lethargy daily. 

This year I challenged my readers to join me for 52 Weeks of Chic – weekly experiences that would promote spiritual and personal growth. 

In Week 2 I asked them (and myself) to fully and finally forgive – others and ourselves – no matter how difficult it might be.  

And because I believe we cannot ask others to do what we are unwilling to do ourselves, I too had to forgive.  

Over the years I had constructed a wall of anger around my heart that simply wouldn’t budge because I couldn’t forgive. 

I was bitter and couldn’t deny it.  

While writing Week 2 of the 52 Weeks of Chic regarding forgiveness I had to stop mid-way through and finally face my unwillingness and inability to forgive.  

The time, resources and efforts I invested into people whose actions made it clear they held no desire to enjoy a relationship with me left me angry . . . deeply.  

“Forgive them God?  Absolutely not!” as my bitterness spewed forth in a torrent of words, emotions and tears.  Scabs were being ripped away leaving the wounds exposed . . .and it hurt.

No amount of denial would change the fact that I was holding onto resentment  – lots of it. 

But I was determined to press on until forgiveness came.  

I refused to allow unforgivness to steal another day, year or decade.  

I was heart sick and it stifled my creativity, consumed my thoughts, robbed me of peace, left me feeling like a spiritual fraud and I realize now was the cause of my health and emotional issues.

My heart which is the wellspring of life was contaminated and it was literally making me ill, exhausted emotionally, physically and mentally. (Prov 4:23) 

Now I understood why exercise, proper nutrition and rest alone were not working.

I was trying to fix an internal problem externally and I was paying the price of not properly “guarding my heart.”  (Prov 4:23) 

Scripture says “the mouth speaks what the heart is full of.” (Luke 6:45 NLT) 

Words begin as thoughts birthed in the heart and a diseased heart produces poisonous thoughts then toxic words that create a miserable existence.

A horrific case of heartsickness was the cause of my constant fatigue and mental fog.  

The prescription? Forgiveness.

If I wanted to be restored and enjoy excellent health I had to choose to forgive.  Yes forgiveness is a choice.

It was time to forgive and with God’s grace I finally did.

Now my energy levels are increasing daily, my joints and muscles no longer ache, my mental fog has lifted, my relationship with God and myself is improving and I feel better overall.  

No, circumstances haven’t changed.   But I have. 

My once infected, sickly heart is now whole and healthy.    

You may not struggle with unforgiveness.   But if you do, today you get to choose to forgive. 

Let the past go, let the resentment go and then let them go.  

Cry, kick and scream your hurt out if you must.  God isn’t afraid of our pain. He is the healer of it.    

Just forgive.  

Your heart, mind and body will become your greatest asset instead of your worst enemy.  

Unforgiveness is a soul-sucking, energy draining, joy stealing thief that hinders any spiritual growth, abundance or blessings. 

Forgiveness however guarantees freedom, energy, clarity, focus and overall wellness!  

How I wish I had known years ago the root cause of my physical and emotional struggles was my unwillingness to forgive.

If you do nothing else in 2020 – forgive!

Sandra Hubbard

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Week 3 – We Stop Shrinking

Week 3 of 52 Weeks of Chic – We Stop Shrinking to Make Others Comfortable 

Do you work hard towards a goal yet avoid telling others when you succeed?

Ever remain silent when you want to speak up because you don’t want to upset anyone?  

Do you adjust your personality or downplay your achievements around around certain people? 

This week we finally stop shrinking to make others feel better about themselves. 

Today let’s embrace and express ourselves exactly as we are vowing to never again water down our personality, skills, accomplishments, strengths, gifts, talents or desires for others.

To be anyone other than who God created us to be leaves us feeling frustrated, confused and even fake as we lose our identity in the needs of others. 

An insecure woman’s confidence can and should never come at the expense of yours.  

The wise woman always allows the achievements and confidence of other women to inspire her, not spark envy and jealousy within her. 

A woman’s self-worth is an inside job and it is no one’s (friend, husband, boyfriend etc) responsibility to make her feel valued, beautiful and worthy. Neediness has killed relationships that otherwise could have thrived.

So this week we stop shrinking who we are to make others feel better about themselves!

It’s a fact that we will always be too much for some people and not enough for others.  

The wise woman understands this and focuses on simply being herself and refuses to water herself down so others feel better about themselves.  

Just Be You!

Sandra Hubbard – Christian Speaker/Writer/Teacher/Life Coach 

Word of the Week:  The old life is gone; a new life has begun. 2 Cor 5:17

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