For those of y'all who don't know, I am a Registered Nurse and have always been very interested in the body and how it works. Over the years, I have also become increasingly more interested in overall health and wellness and how the things we do and eat affect every part of our lives.
Saying that, as we continue forward, you may begin to see more posts about health and wellness and how we should view and treat our bodies.
These posts will fall under the category: "A Better Way to Wellness"
Growing up, my Dad used to always tell us, "If you don't have your health, you don't have anything."
I used to think that this statement was a bit extreme even though - from what limited understanding I had of health at the time - I did believe it to be true.
As I've grown and continued to learn more and more about our bodies and the miracle that they are, I've come to believe that this little piece of wisdom that my Dad used to preach to us when we were younger, is not only true, but that it is also of extreme importance.
Where I think we have gone wrong is our limited definition of what our health really consists of.
In a conversation with my roommates the other day, I compared walking through this life with walking through a minefield...
There would be some seasons of life where we would be walking in between the buried land mines, but we were bound to step on a few along the way.
That was my life advice for our conversation that we were having about all the many changes that life brings and all the hard things we seem to have to go through to learn and grow.
To which my roommate so lovingly and semi-sarcastically responded, "Wow, Anna. That was really helpful."
If you know me well, you know that I can tend to take a slightly critical view on things. I'd like to say I am a realist, but I also know I can lean towards the overly critical.
So the sarcastic admonishment from my friend was well deserved.
And while it has been said before - and with great truth - that we are either preparing for a storm, walking through one, or coming out of one, we as Christians can not use these phrases as an excuse to have a negative view on this life we've been given.
Growing up in the Arizona desert, rain can come to feel like just as exciting of a phenomenon as snow on Christmas Day.
Things aren't much different here in Texas.
When it rain we immediately have to drive 10mph on roads where the normal speed limit is 65mph. We take videos, don't leave our houses, and will use it as an excuse to not go to the grocery store, run errands, or skip church.
You think I'm kidding...
Nevertheless rain is not something we can go without. Not even in Texas or Arizona.
Single-minded. That has been my word for 2018. I wanted my thoughts to be solely focused on the Lord and what He had for me and not so easily distracted by comparison or lustful or selfish thoughts. I hesitated to even post this tonight because I have been everything but single-minded today. I have been worry-minded, prideful-minded, and self-minded. Currently, I am getting to be a part of @hayley.e.morgan’s latest book launch team and I just wanna talk about it for a second. Because she has some good stuff to say about this.
The subtitle of her book “Preach to Yourself,” is: When your inner critic comes calling, talk back with Truth. As it turns out, I’m not the only one that struggles with the whole “single-minded” thing. Turns out we all have 50 million lies and temptations running around in our brains, distracting us and keeping us from fully being who God created us to be.
The good news is, we don’t have to continue to let the lies in our heads rule us. Today I let the lies and my flesh rule me. But His mercies are new every morning and I do not want to continue to do that. And I don’t want you to either.
I’ll leave you all with an encouraging passage from her book tonight:
“Our loud minds can be quieted with God’s loving-kindness. Our wrongheaded thoughts can be put to death, and we really can live a life dwelling on - incarnating, really - resurrection truth. In order to live in this wholehearted and clearheaded integrity, we need to submit our beliefs and our thoughts to a God who is able to make sense of it all. I have tried, and I am convinced that trying hard is not enough. This kind of life change will require that we partner with a supernatural God.
I need to tell you that you have the opportunity to be living, breathing examples of Jesus walking around in the world. We do! But our flesh is not inclined to agree. And our brain, that beautifully complex organ that holds our thoughts is quite literally flesh! Unreformed by God, we’ll go about our days frantic, worried, dour, or fussy. This is not the way of Jesus. This is not a Christlike representation of Him to a broken world.” @hayley.e.morgan
Let’s not grow weary friends.
The truth is y’all, people are hard. And to be completely honest, I’m one of the hardest. I can be extremely impatient and irritable and in my own pride justify my irritable responses by telling myself that I’m either in the right or just in a “mood.” But the truth is, there is no excuse. There is no excuse as to why I am so quick to be short with the those who are closest to me. The only honest reason that exists is the sin in my heart that causes me to be unloving and unkind and seek my own selfish desires. Thankful however for His Spirit that is also at work in me, through Jesus, who is constantly convicting me, growing me, and making me more like Him. He’s also using difficult people like me to do that. If you want to grow, find friends who aren’t trying to please you, who love you, and who love Jesus even more. Allow them to tell you the truth you need to hear. Confess when you fall short. Seek forgiveness and know you’ve already been forgiven. Oh, and if you can, travel the world with them. #abetterway #community
It’s the most wonderful time of the yearrrrrr again!! 😂❤️🏈 #sicembears
I feel fairly confident that I was supposed to read this book in high school and I also feel fairly confident that if I did, not even an ounce of the truth it is filled with really sunk in. This story is an incredible testimony to the power and love of God and the work that He can do even in the darkest of places - even in a concentration camp in Nazi Germany. I hope to cling to God’s Word in the Bible as tightly as Corrie and her family did. They knew the power it held, the sustenance it provided. And she clung to it, smuggling it from camp to camp and sharing it with everyone around her. If you don’t recall reading this book, I hope you will pick it up again. And I thought I’d share some of my favorite quotes here:
“But as the rest of the world grew stranger, one thing became increasingly clear. And that was the reason the two of us were here. Why others should suffer we were not shown. As for us, from morning until lights-out, whenever we were not in the ranks for roll call, our Bible was the center of an ever-widening circle of help and hope. Like waifs clustered around a blazing fire, we gathered about it, holding out our hearts to its warmth and light. The blacker the night around us grew, the brighter and truer and more beautiful burned the word of God. ‘Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? Shall tribulation, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or peril, or sword?...Nay in all things we are more than conquerors through him that loved us.’”
“And so I discovered that it is not on our forgiveness any more than our goodness that the world’s healing hinges, but on His. When He tells us to love our enemies, He gives, along with the command, the love itself.” #WhatImReading #ABetterWay #TheHidingPlace
Sometimes you dress up like princess to remind yourself that you are one 😂. But then you take awkward candid pics cause taking yourself too seriously is overrated. Thankful for these beautiful fools. They love me, encourage me, challenge me, and point me to Jesus. Plus they’re fun. #roommates #cindarellaballet
Missed the first day of school pics cause, well, I’m just not used to getting back into this whole school thing yet! (And this whole online school thing is throwing me for a loop but I guess we’re gettin all futuristic and stuff now 😜). All that to say, I do have big and BRIGHT hopes for this new season of learning that I am entering into. Thankful we serve a God of second chances who’s willing to give me another chance to be grateful for this time and for my education, instead of just striving to get through it, like I did so much of nursing school.
If you think you’ve messed up too many times or gone too far off the path, guess what, He’s not just a God of second chances, He’s a God of third chances and fourth chances and fifth chances. Because He knows we need as many as we can get on this side of heaven! So don’t give up. Because He hasn’t given up on you.
School for me has always been that thing that reminds me that I am below average (based on my grades). But this time, I’m choosing to see it as a tool that the Lord is going to use to equip and train me to better do the work He has set before me. So what is that thing that you have let tell you your worth? What is that thing that you have let define you? Is it your relationship status? Your job? Your broken marriage? Here’s my best advice: give it to God. Tell Him you don’t want it to define you anymore. And let Him work.
I definitely don’t have this down perfectly yet. But I know He is working. And I know if He has called me to it, He will carry me through it. And I know the same is true for you tonight.
Baylor, I just couldn’t get enough of you and I’m excited to see what is in store 🐻💛.
So...I’m pretty sure this is called “striving”. Which is definitely not what we are supposed to do. But honestly y’all, it is so hard for me to sit still. Even when I know lots of things are about to be happening, even when I have a general timeline of what’s about to go down - I just can’t stand to sit and wait. My brain constantly feels like it is going a million miles an hour with about 5 different life plans that I think might work out great for me. .
And there, I think is why I struggle so much to sit and wait. Because I’ve mistaken who this whole life story thing is really about. I’ve believed the lie, that I am the one who makes things happen for me. And that I am the one that this life depends upon. I’ve believe the lie that I am the main character of this story. When really, nothing could be further from the truth. God doesn’t want us to slam into door after door, and fall on our faces in exhaustion because we have been relying on our own strength. He wants us to rest in Him and to wait on Him before we move forward. And while we may still hit some closed doors, when we are abiding instead of striving, we can trust that He is making a way. He has always been making a way for us to get back to Him. Independence and self-reliance was never supposed to be the goal.
But I have good news - if you’ve believed that lie like I have, He will still meet you when you’re lying flat on your back looking straight up where He’s been waiting for you the whole time ❤️.
Praying we would stop striving to achieve all the things we think we want and that we would start abiding in the One who promises to give us infinitely more than we could ever think or imagine. #abidedontstrive #abetterway
Thankful for the little glimpses of heaven we get in this life that we live between two gardens. Y’all, @lysaterkeurst has a new book coming out in November called, “It’s Not Supposed to be This Way.” And from what I’ve read of it so far, it’s everything, anyone who’s hurting or struggling or walking through something difficult, needs to hear. So basically, it’s exactly what all of us need to hear. It’s not a pretty little neat story with some helpful life hacks either. It’s a story about real life. Real pain. Real hurt. And a real hope.
We may live among the brokenness between the world we were intended for, and the renewed and restored world that is to come, but we have a God who loves us and is working through even the broken things for our good and His glory. It’s these views that remind us that even though we can’t always see the whole picture, or the 50,000ft view, we have a God who sees it all. From the beginning to the end. And I’ve actually read the end of the incredible story He is writing. Spoiler Alert: His goodness wins. Our pain, it’s not permanent. ❤️🙌🏼
Y’all can preorder @lysaterkeurst’s new book here: It's Not Supposed to Be This Way: Finding Unexpected Strength When Disappointments Leave You Shattered https://www.amazon.com/dp/0718039858/ref=cm_sw_r_cp_api_q8pABbB1662F4 #itsnotsupposedtobethisway
Thank you to everyone at Baylor Grapevine who made my first few years of being a nurse so special. It’s been a wild ride, but I would not trade it for the world.
Thankful for these friends who know how to have fun and know how to talk about the hard stuff. Who know how to explore and get lost, but who will also come find you if you wander off track. Friends who know your worst thoughts and still remind you of the truth about who you are. Friends who are not afraid to call you out but also never fail to show you grace when you’ve messed up. These are the kinds of friendships we were created for. They’re still messy, and still broken, but they’re beautiful because of the One they are centered around. Wouldn’t be where I am today if it wasn’t for relationships like these.
I sometimes struggle when I get on social media and see all the successful writers and online business owners killing it at what they do. I struggle because I think, “Everyone’s already done this thing I wanna do, why should I even keep writing?” The same thing happens at work or within my group of friends when I hear everyone talk about going back to school to be a Nurse Practitioner or Physicians Assistant. Does the world really need another provider? Isn’t the job market too crowded already? Isn’t healthcare going broke anyways?
Doubt is a tool that the enemy loves to wield and use on us as we begin to pursue God in every part of our lives. He will tell you that you aren’t good enough or that the world doesn’t need you. He will tell you that you aren’t smart enough and that you will probably fail. He will tell you that there’s already someone out there doing that one thing better than you ever could, so why even try?
But here’s the truth. Yes, most things have been said, done, written, and taught before. But no one has ever done it quite like you. No one has ever written the stories, cared for the patients, or taught the people He has in front of you right now. So go out there and do that thing that you do. Whether you’ve been called to teach, preach, care for, or create. Just get to it. Whether you show one person Christ’s love through your work, or one million people - our job is to be faithful. Our job is to know Him and make Him known. And our work is a very unique way - and a unique gift - that each of us have been given to show others His love. Stop letting comparison win. Stop letting doubt creep in. Cling to truth. And do what you’ve been called to do. For as long as we live in this broken world, someone will need you to show them that Jesus loves them too.
Happy Birthday @molliehu!! Thanks for traveling across the world with me, intentionally pressing my buttons to grow my patience, always making me laugh, and for trying to see the positive in every situation first. Excited to see what the Lord has in store for you this year and to see how He continues to grow you. Can not wait to hear stories about all the kids you’re going to get a chance to show Christ’s love to as you start teaching this year. Love you!