Moving Forward Part II

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As we embark on this journey of rediscovery let’s look at our first action step.

  1. Remember to use this time to reflect on the promises of God for your life and to evaluate where you currently are.

Many times we become anxious when life doesn’t seem to line up the way we think it should.  Reflecting on the promises of God will calm our minds and give us peace. In the Scripture when we see the word promise, it refers to a legally binding declaration that gives the person to whom it is made a right to expect or to claim it. According to Scripture, we know that God cannot lie. This gives the believer the assurance that whatever God has said concerning you and me has to come to past. God is not a man, that He should lie, Not a son of man, that He should repent. Has He said, and will He not do? Or has He spoken, and will He not make it good? Numbers 23:19. Just reading this Scripture gives me a double boost. I receive a huge injection of confidence just knowing that I serve the One who makes good on His promises.

In Numbers 23:19, unlike the other gods, who were often portrayed  as imaginative and easily influenced through witchcraft, Our God was and remains unshakeable. Balak commissioned Balaam to curse Israel in order to deliver the Moabites from possible enslavement and persecution. God’s hand was upon Israel and she would not be cursed.  Notice the words would not this means it is absolutely impossible, no way, and nothing you or anyone else can do to change it. God’s promises are sealed.

Your present situation may look differently from what you desire it to look like. But as you focus on what God has promised, you will notice your mindset shifting toward thanksgiving. Regardless of the place you are mentally, physically, emotionally, or financially remember what God has said concerning you no man can change it. The psychic Balaam became the mouth of God.  There was nothing Balaam could do to bring harm to God’s people. There is nothing the enemy can do to stop what God has planned for you as long as you remain obedient to the Word of God.

What do you do while you are waiting for the manifestation of the promises? You pray, wait, and continue to work. There is much work to be done in the Kingdom. I am confident that God has much more for me in my writing and speaking. There are doors that will be opened to me in the future and it’s important that I do not rush and push what God has not opened. It is also vital that I do not lose heart in the process. My faith is in God and what His Word says concerning me, so I don’t allow the circumstances of life to sway me. There will be times when we need to catch our breath but we must never give up.

Evaluation is good and necessary but remember God has the final word. So while I evaluate my life to see what I can do differently and in some cases better, I do not lose sight on the One who holds my life in His hands.  The Lord will fulfill his purpose for me your steadfast love, O Lord, endures forever, Do not forsake the work of your hands. Psalm 138:8 (ESV) The psalmist tells us that God will complete His purpose as it relates to each of us. Be assured that you will never get to a place where God will leave you to go it on your own. He will finish what He started in you.

 

Evelyn Johnson-Taylor PhD

To learn more about Dr. Taylor

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Moving Forward

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“Being confident of this very thing, that he which hath begun a good work in you will perform it until the day of Jesus Christ.”  (Philippians 1:6)

 My prayer focus for 2019 will be in the areas of rebuilding and restoring. 2018 was a year of untold challenges for me. My fifty-eight year old husband went home to be with the Lord on June 20, 2018. When I say “I lost my husband last year,” some will respond by saying “he’s not lost you know where he is.” While that is true — he is not misplaced or nowhere to be found — the loss that I am speaking of is the effects of his death and the lack of his presence that accompanies it. The best way to verbalize this is by using the word loss.  There is a void and I miss the contributions he added to my life daily.

In this new season of my life, I am confident that my purpose remains intact because I know God has a plan for my life. I know I have a Kingdom Assignment, and I know what it is.  There are times in life when we need a moment to refocus. Perhaps you have experienced a death last year.  Not necessarily of a loved one, but death of a dream. Maybe you are feeling confusion regarding your purpose or simply experiencing a void in an area of your life.

Don’t be discouraged by where you currently sit in life. Let us go on this journey of rediscovery together. I am confident that after we have spent quality time with God, we  will reach a new destination stronger, more powerful and with more confidence than before.

There are a few action steps I would like to share with you during our journey of what appears to be silence, but God is at work.

  1.  Remember to use this time to reflect on the promises of God for your life and to   evaluate where you currently are.
  2.  Seek to be in the presence of God daily.
  3.  Position yourself in a space that is easy to hear the voice of God clearly.
  4.  Meditate on this truth: He who has begun a good work in you is able to complete it.

“Being confident of this very thing, that he which hath begun a good work in you will perform it until the day of Jesus Christ.” (Philippians 1:6) Apostle Paul uses the word confident, meaning he is convinced. There must have been some previous occurrences for Paul to already be persuaded of God’s faithfulness. This message to the Philippians was a proclamation that he remains persuaded that God was going to do a good work among them. Not just one of them, but among all who believed on the name of the Lord. The word until notes progress toward a goal and shows that a time is coming when God will absolutely finish His work not only among the Philippian believers but among our generation of believers as well. I am praying for your strength for the journey and restoration for the next phase of purpose.

What has God started in you that you are waiting for Him to complete?

Evelyn Johnson-Taylor Ph.D.

To Learn more about Dr. Johnson-Taylor

Caring for the Caregiver

 

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Caregivers must be intentional about caring for their own health. In the process of caring for someone else, it’s easy to neglect yourself. Just as you make a schedule for your loved ones, make a schedule for yourself. Schedule down time for yourself even if it’s sitting outside in the fresh air.  You are valuable, if you do not take care of yourself how will you care for others?

My husband has an aide that comes three days a week, it’s only for an hour or so but that an hour that I can use to get out of the house. She will call and let me know when she is on her way and I immediately begin to gather what I need so that I can walk out the door as soon as she walks in. I usually use that time to get in some form of exercise.

Exercise has several benefits, one of which is that it improves your mood while also decreasing anxiety and stress.  During exercise your body releases chemicals that improve your mood. As little as 30 minutes of exercise can have  positive results on an individual.

I know from personal experience that I am happier when I exercise. I walk away from a workout with a feeling of accomplishment that I have done something good for myself.  While we as caregivers are busy doing for others, do not overlook yourself. If you want to have something to give to the one you care for be sure to nourish yourself, otherwise you will be empty. You will have nothing for yourself and certainly nothing to give others.

Caregivers start moving.

 

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Evelyn Johnson Taylor

To learn more about Evelyn

Effects of Exercise Study

Caring for the Caregiver

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My book See Me Hear Me Know Me from The Heart of a Caregiver I share my journey of being a caregiver for my husband. Next month will be 10 years that I have been his caregiver. It has been quite an interesting journey to say the least. With the fluctuation of his condition you would think it would make my job easier.  Well, sometimes it does but to be honest most of the time it does not. It’s the not knowing what to expect that has been one of the great challenges for me. One day he is quite independent than the next day he is dependent.

Scott, my husband has just come home from nearly a one-month stay in the hospital. With this new discharge brings new challenges. When I wrote this book, my goal was to give a voice to caregivers. To add validation their emotions and let them know that they are not alone.

 It has been one of my great joys to hear from caregivers who have read the book and to learn how much it helped them. Sharing our story has opened doors for me to speak to Caregiver Support Group where I have met some amazing individuals. Caregivers work hard doing a job that no one really asks for.

2 Corinthians 12:9 NIV “But he said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ’s power may rest on me.” 

The answer that Apostle Paul received in this Scripture is not the answer we seek when we go to God with an issue, but it was a good answer. The Apostle was assured that God’s grace was sufficient for all his needs. Even in his infirmity that could have hindered his effectiveness, the grace of God was sufficient. As caregivers, know that whatever demands your role as a caregiver puts on you, the grace of God will see you through. His grace is often in the form of tools and resources that come to assist caregivers.  Be wise and take advantage of every opportunity to receive the help you need. Caregivers must take care of themselves so that they can continue to care for the most vulnerable among us.

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Evelyn Johnson-Taylor PhD