Discover Your Battle Cry!

This is a battle cry.  The following words have been inspired by the #BattleReadyBook written by Kelly Balarie.  I am here.  It may not be fancy.  It may not wet your eyes with brilliant “me too” glory.  You may think I need to repent by the time that I’m finished.  And maybe I will.  But what if I spilled my guts anyway?  I mean what if I just poured out my story, exactly as it wants to fall out of me.  What would that look like?  Would you want to see all of that?  Well, I hope so.  Because here we go.

I’m here anyway.  That’s where it starts for me.

I’ve heard so many stories that sound better than mine.  These women seem braver and realer, and whatever the something else is that could be better than me.  You name it, I think it.  Do you feel that tension?  Do you recognize that pull toward the something ugly and competitive that lives deep inside me?  It’s called insecurity.  And the being here in this vast mass of anointed from heaven, stamped-by-God voices that are sure to surround me presses into me, face to face and butt up against that ugly inside me.  Hard.  It’s all around me.  The reflections of my own inadequacies are everywhere I look.

That is, when I’m all on my own.

But Jesus…

He changes the script.

So in spite of all that, I’m here.  I’m showing up and connecting.  I’m building others up, whether I see the benefits or not.  Which I totally do!  There’s a blessing in store for me to support someone else.  There always is.  The blessing is mine for the sharing of God’s wealth.  That’s how it works.  Can you believe that?  It’s true.

Whether I deserve it or not, I want it.  Whatever God has for me.  Because it’s there for the taking.  It’s there for the receiving.  I don’t want to miss what He has for me anymore.  That’s what I was doing before when I counted myself out, before I even stepped out.  Why not try something different now?  Why not come out to play with everyone else- win or lose- cause I can’t lose?  I get to put my voice out there, within the mix of the masses.  I can let it out, for whatever it is.  It can count!

This is me showing up, and reaching out.  For whatever God has.  All of it.  For myself and the others that I get to champion.  What an honor!  I’m taking hold of the victory that was won for me at cavalry.  We are.  This battle belongs to the Lord Almighty.  He’s the King of kings and the Lord of lords.  I’m on the winning team!

My enemy may try to get in my head.  He talks a big game.  But that’s cause he’s scared.  I do not battle all alone.  I march out with an army.  This enemy has discounted me for far too long.  This showing up is me- and ALL my Battle Ready sisters- rising up!  Together.  We are a mighty army.  A force to be reckoned with.  It’s time that our enemy fear US.

We’ve got business to do!

What I’m doing here, these declarations about what God has for me- and not just everyone else- this isn’t natural for me.  I have to  push back against the voices that tell me nobody cares what I have to say, that I’m too this or too that.  This is me, pushing back.  WITH all of you.  It’s us!  WE are the push back that the enemy fears.  Just showing up is how that happens.

Good stuff is for others, but it’s for me too.  And I don’t know if you know this, my friends.  But the same is true for you.

#BattleReadyBook by Kelly Balarie is full of resources to help you discover your very own battle cry.  It’s available for purchase at https://amzn.to/2NbzQrc  And make sure you visit http://www.iambattleready.com for your free Battle Ready bonuses!!

Taking Action

Do you ever wonder where it all takes form?  Where does this Christian life start to move things?  I think maybe it all dials back to relationship.  The Bible teaches us that the Word comes to life in practice.  “Do not merely listen to the word, and so deceive yourselves.  Do what is says.” James 1:22  Our relationships are where we carry that out.  We can’t practice loving God and others completely, without inviting others into our walk.  Maybe for you, that’s a challenge.  It is for me.

This is where we must persevere to see the fruit of our labor.  It serves well to establish some techniques that will help us to push through the things that are unnatural to us.  Because that’s where we tap into God’s supernatural power.  Sure, it takes a little tenacity, but this is where the good stuff starts to surface.

It might feel a bit weird at times because faith in action compels us to do strange things that may not get any feedback at all.  But it’s never wasted.  Any time that we’ve trusted God with our feet serves purpose, and has value.  He blesses that.  Whether we see it, or not.  It grows up our faith vision.  Which is really cool at night.  Meaning, it’s quite helpful when we find ourselves trekking through the dark.

Are you getting that, Friends?

Maybe you’re like me, and you catch on to things a little later than most.  I was always late to the party.  By the time I arrived, the parties were over.  I got used to doing life solo.  Maybe that’s you.  But that’s not how God calls His girls to do life.  Not anymore.  We’re His kids!  He wants to lead us into MORE.  He wants us well watered and deeply rooted in our walking with Him.  That happens more abundantly within the nourishment of healthy community.  We’re missing out if we’re doing it solo, and He wants to help!

Will you let Him?

Connection starts HERE.  It’s always right here, wherever that is for you.

Reach out to someone.  Ask God how He’d have you trust Him, to try something new.  You’ll be surprised to see how He shows up for you, Friend.  You’re His treasure.  He wants the very best for you.

Do you believe that?

His promise is true.  His promise is for YOU.

Can We Be Friends?

So who are we, and why are we hiding?

Maybe it’s just in my imaginary ideas, but I envision you a lot like myself.  And for me, I feel like maybe sometimes the room just isn’t quite big enough for me to let myself into it.  Is that true for you too?

You see, I have a lot of great ideas.  They just come out a little too late to share them in a normal way.  I am the queen of after-thoughts.  Hello, it’s me again.  With one more thing to say.  After the conversation is over.  And it just goes on… forever.  It’s great.

I think I’m really funny.  Inside my head.  Of course, that’s a place where there are sound effects and my timing is great.  And the people there actually get my jokes.  In real life, that doesn’t always happen.

By far, the hardest thing for me to manage is the super scary stuff that I think to myself is definitely best kept neatly tucked away.  I keep that stuff safely hidden on the inside, where I reason that no one can use it against me.  That’s the stuff that tries to run my life.  And can I tell you something funny?  That’s the very part of me that in my own experience is the most helpful to someone else.  That’s the stuff that connects us to others.

The stuff we’re scared to let out is the part that makes our stories matter.

I’m learning to tap into that power, and that’s the magic I hope to share with you here.  You have a story, and I want to hear it.  “They overcame (the accuser) by the blood of the Lamb and the word of their testimony…” Revelations 12:11  That’s how YOU overcome the scary stuff that wants to run your life.  You let it out, into the world.  You draw power from the blood of the Lamb.  You take cover in God’s grace, and His truth about you.

We want to hear your story.  The world wants to know you, friend.  We want to know the you that you’ve kept locked up on the inside.  Let her out!  She wants to play and make friends.  And maybe tell a joke that doesn’t quite land.  Or even braver than that, maybe she has a really sad story to tell that people may not understand.  She might need to invite someone into her pain so she doesn’t feel so alone anymore.

We’re not called to carry our burdens alone.  We’re made for community.  Everybody needs a friend.

Can I be yours?

Because you’re already mine.

Thanks for stopping by, friend.  Come back soon!

Take Cover

Security.  Confidence.  They’re heavy words.  It’s difficult to spill words onto a page without forcing them into a usable mold.  But I know that’s exactly what this practice is about.  It’s the necessity for a space to simply exist.  As I am.  As you are.  Without effort.  Or analysis.  And editing.  Which I’m already doing.

It’s about moving the existence of self from our heads to the space that we occupy.  I need to experience the space I’m consuming.  I need to exist in it.  Maybe you can relate. I too often feel trapped inside the walls of my head.  Confidence seems to be the key to unlocking that door.  I just don’t quite know how to take hold of it yet.

I seek validation from myself and others to convince myself I’m ready for things.  But just as easily, I convince myself I’m not ready, and we’re back at square one.  The only cure for me seems to be just going for it, unsure.  With as little time possible spent inside my head.  So that’s the practice I’ve been attempting to cultivate.

Still it’s not a total cure, in seeing how unsteady I feel from the outside.  I’m reeling inside until someone relieves the pressure with awkward validation.  I say it’s awkward because I don’t know how to accept it.  It’s probably more awkward for me than for them.  But I question and doubt if they really meant it.  Sometimes I wonder if their compliments are concealing something else entirely.  Perhaps a threat.  And while all this is a learning curve that comes with due frustration, I’m still finding it’s better out here than in there.  At least out here I can navigate the threats and use them to learn and to grow. In there, I’m just hopelessly stuck.

So what does all this say about me?  What truth lies exposed beneath these rambling thoughts?

Deep insecurity.

For which, I’m not even sure there is a cure.

That’s when I consider the miles I’ve come walking with Jesus into my own skin.  And clearly there is One.  Only One.  And perhaps that’s the biggest challenge of all.  I seek so many other answers to this never ending equation for which there’s only One answer that counts.  It’s so simple, it’s too simple.  And over and over, I near miss it entirely.  When will I learn that Jesus alone is the answer I crave?  Every answer, to every question.

“Pick something you like, and see how it grows.”  Thank you, Emily Freeman.

Everlasting Daddy, hear my prayer and answer.  Teach my soul to start with Jesus every time.  In everything.  More than anything else, I want to see Jesus take form and grow in every part of  my life.

It seems that Jesus is teaching me something.  Maybe the problem isn’t that I retreat but how.  By default, I retreat back into my head.  That’s where I feel safe.  But that’s the most dangerous place of all.  It’s there that my insecurities eat me alive.

Maybe growing into this Jesus within me retreats from out here, from the outside.  In Him.

“Keep me safe, O God.  For in you I take refuge.”  Psalm 16:1

“… in YOU I take refuge.”

Not me.

Maybe that’s exactly the point.  To meet the world, just as we are.  Without a single answer if only to say, “We’re here.  And we’re covered.”

Because of Jesus.

The Blessing of Being Battle Ready

I know what it’s like to feel trapped by the limitations I build in my own mind. I’m discovering that the cure for that is stepping out. And our trials are the key. #BattleReadyBook by Kelly Balarie has challenged me to trust God’s heart, and let faith lead my way in the dark.

 

TITLE: The Blessing of Being Battle Ready

By: Kelly Balarie

 

I was in the waiting room for the MRI. All that was going through my mind was thoughts of, This is horrible. I am never going to survive. I am not going to be able to walk. There is no way out of this. I will be scared to death in that loud machine. I hate needles and they’ll put one in me.

 

All I could see there was me. It was me and my problems. Me and my trauma. Me and all the horrible pain that was ahead of me.

 

Add this to the fact that I was a new mom. My kid had been up screaming all night long. I had been pacing the hallway with him. I had been the one trying to hug him all day long as he screamed his head off. I think he had acid reflux.

 

I also had a mole that needed to be taken off my chest. We didn’t know if it was cancerous. The doctor gauged my chest. The scar still remains.

 

Did anyone ever tell you that we have an enemy that roams around like a sneaky, conniving villain in the night, searching out ways to steal, kill and destroy?

 

He’s likely come after you.

 

But, may I tell you? Battle Ready women, built up in the Lord, strong in their mind – those who renew their thoughts – know something that others don’t.


They know: It doesn’t matter what the enemy does; It matters what Jesus did.

 

You see, above our problems, our mayhem, our issues, our dents and dings of life, is a victorious King who reigns and rules. He sees everything. He knows our every tear. He sees our every way. He is a help in a time of trouble. He is our refuge and our strength. He is our way and our life.

 

He is Overcomer. He is Victorious. He is equipping us with all we need to fight the good fight today. We are not crushed, ruined or abandoned, we are raised up with Christ Jesus in the heavenlies.


Jesus brings resurrection life no matter what situation we’re in. Battle Ready women are not driven by their wide-ranging emotions but by heartfelt dedication to God’s truth, His promises and His purposes. This changes everything.

 

Rather than seeing the issue, they see the Provider. Rather than seeing the MRI, they begin to see the other woman in the room that they can minister to. This happened to me. I lifted my head there and got to know a woman with bone cancer. She was in so much pain. I prayed for her before she went into her MRI. I told her about Jesus.

 

Battle Ready women do the awesome and amazing work of God. They let not their issues hold them back. They’re all in. They go for it.

 

Are you Battle Ready? Are you ready to let peace, passion, life and freedom take over?


Come join me.

 

 

About Battle Ready: Train Your Mind to Conquer Challenges, Defeat Doubt & Live Victoriously

 

“The best time to be strengthened against the Enemy’s tactics of doubt, disappointment, and devastation is before he makes his first move toward us. We all desperately need the biblical guidance and preparation found in Battle Ready!”

Lysa TerKeurstNew York Times bestselling author and president of Proverbs 31 Ministries

 

 

Battle Ready is a hands-on scriptural plan that teaches you twelve easy-to-implement, confidence-building mind-sets designed to transform your thoughts and, therefore, your life. You’ll gain practical wisdom, like how to

· make new habits stick in just five steps
· disarm the seven most common attacks that plague women
· exchange self-limiting thoughts for purpose-driven, love-releasing thoughts
· implement thirty-second mind-lifters that deliver peace
· create boundaries so you live life full of what matters

 

Buy Battle Ready here: https://amzn.to/2l5qQrw

 

To get Battle Ready freebies – printables, devotional reminders, a customizable daily Battle Plan and the “Find Your Battle Style” quiz, visit: www.iambattleready.com  

 

 

To order the companion Battle Ready Daily Prayer Journal that will help you practically change your thoughts, then your life, visit:

 

 

Kelly Balarie, an author and national speaker, is on a mission to encourage others not to give up. Through times of extreme testing, Kelly believes there is hope for every woman, every battle and in every circumstance. She shares this hope on her blog, Purposeful Faith, and on many writing publications such as Relevant, Crosswalk, and Today’s Christian Woman. Kelly’s work has been featured on The Today Show, 700 Club Interactive, Moody Radio and other television and radio broadcasts. When Kelly is not writing, she is chilling at the beach with her husband, a latte, and 2-toddlers who rightfully demand she build them awesome castles.

Recruiting Season!

I recently discovered something I don’t do as well as I should. I think it’s one of those things that will really enrich my life if I practice more of it. I think you’ll agree. Are you curious?

It turns outs out I’m so addicted to checking things off my list, that too often I fail to take pause for celebrating wins. Which is sad.

When I take inventory, I see a lot of milestone moments that haven’t gotten the recognition they were due. There were risks I took to follow God’s lead into new and blossoming friendships. Others were less noticeable, and maybe more personal to me, but just as significant. Many times, these are the journeys that happen in books. A book is an adventure that happens inside me. It’s my favorite kind!

Last summer,  I went on an adventure with Kelly Balarie called “Fear Fighting.” It totally changed the course of my life. It was one of those God appointments. You know, when everything syncs up at that perfect timing for you to hear just what He’s saying to you in that specific moment. You know there’s a reason, so you listen up. And I did.

If you don’t know about Kelly Balarie, believe me. You need to. She’s awesome! You’ll love her. Now that you know that, you must know the very latest, this just in, thing.  Kelly has a new book coming out THIS summer!! You don’t want to miss this adventure my friends. It WILL change your life. She’s doing all sorts of giveaways and fun stuff for pre-orders because she wants to bless you friends! So don’t miss out on the #BattleReadyBook by @KellyBalarie to be released July 3rd. And don’t forget to claim your bonuses for pre-order at iambattleready.com.

I really want you to come along with me. It’s going to change the way you see the world you live in. I promise. Kelly is super relatable and fresh. I’m so excited to see where God leads from here! And anything good is always better with friends. That’s why I’m saving you a seat, right next to me!!

See you there.

Go For It!

Assuming you’re like me, there’s a million reasons you’re waiting to start on the path to your thing.  And there’s always a thing. Trust me.  Something that maybe feels too far off to admit that you can’t stop thinking about it.  But it’s there.  It never really goes away, no matter how well you cover it up.  It just won’t go away.

It’s way too far off as it is to make sense of your path, and that probably freaks the bananas out of you! So it’s discouraging to consider possibility over trying something totally new to you.  But if you’re honest, I’m guessing there’s something that’s closer.  Something you can do.  Something right in front of you.  Still, you’re waiting.

Maybe you’re waiting for something better to offer, something special or new.  But the truth is… you may never find the thing that feels special or new.  People everywhere are doing, and have been awhile, the thing you want to do. “…There’s nothing new under the sun.”  Ecclesiastes 1:9

But there’s ONE thing, something special, that whatever it is will never have without you.  Maybe something you haven’t actually considered.  And you already have it.  That something special is you, Friend.  It needs you.  WE need you.  Just be honest.  And be you!

Start doing your thing, as only you can.  You know you want to.  So what are you waiting for?  Say yes!  Say yes to your thing… say yes to God.  He’s the one that put it there.

Maybe that’s exactly why you can’t get it out of your head.

Second Guessing

Are you waiting for permission to live deeply? And true?

Granted.

Consider this an invitation to submit, to the thrill of creation… within you!  It comes with one word of caution.  Don’t ignore the voice that speaks you into existence.  God’s guidance is there to preserve the very breath that IS you.  Jesus said it this way.  “What good would it be to gain the whole world, yet forfeit your soul?” Matthew 16:26

God would love nothing more than to witness you stepping into the fullness of life that He lovingly sets before you, day after day.  Don’t settle for anything less than exactly that!  Resist the urge with every fiber of being you are to shrink into lesser offers than God’s very best.  And beware.  Because there are threats on the path to your destination.

They will try to convince you there’s something better than what God has for you, on the other side of trust.  These foes don’t want you to arrive, and they’re working against you.  They’re tricky too.  But the sheep know the voice of the Shepherd, and His is the only voice you can trust.  That’s a promise.

Anything other than that knowing voice in your spirit that aligns with God’s Word and His plan is a trick.  Even if it seems right.  Don’t sell out for second best, friend.

Jump into life.  All in.  Both feet, and head first.  Go for it!

You don’t have to travel alone.  Your traveling companion knows every step of the way.  Every inch.  Just start with yourself, and let God lead the way.  To a new day!

What’s Behind Your Curtain?

Today God moved me to consider the spirit of obsession He built into my wiring.  At first, I wondered if it was something I should surrender, if I could fix it somehow.  Classic control freak.  Then I recalled how it was there as a child.  How it had always been there.  Maybe that’s how He intended it.

As a girl, I took delight in mapping out my future.  Full detail.  Super precocious, and charming of course.  Although, something disturbed me when it caught my attention today, as I pondered.  It was the smallness of my tiny vision.

As a child, with the rest of my life still ahead, my best years yet to come… this glitch in my wiring could have easily been channeled into something with promise.  Anything.  But I dreamed of McDonald’s.

I would work there and rent a studio apartment for $300 or so, making little more than minimum wage (at the time just barely $5 an hour… maybe less.)  All according to my strict timeline.  I used newspaper ads to build my research, and I had a five-year plan at the ripe age of twelve.  But I didn’t plan for school.  College wasn’t part of the dream.

Tragic, really.

I didn’t leave much room for trial and error in my rigid plan.  But I did most of what I set out to do exactly as I had intended.  The fact that no one thought I actually would just ensured my pre-written fate.  I was more determined than ever to prove I could run my own life.  My only goal.  And a poor one.  But I did it.

By this time, I had acquired many things on which to fixate my attention.  I moved from one fixation to next, quite effortlessly.  I was always armed with something to obsess- or someone.  I guess it was my way of coping with the very little to no control I had over anything at all.  I micromanaged my own little space, where no one was allowed to come all the way in.  Sounds dreamy, doesn’t it?

And well, it was in a way.  I grew accustomed to a life that was trapped inside my own head.  A perpetual daydream.  Where I made the rules.  Can I point out the obvious?  The world I invented didn’t really exist.  And I was quite lonely really.  I should furthermore remind you of the smallness of vision that ordered my steps.  That is, until God…

“But God,” quoted famously as the pattern interrupt to save life after life.  Over and over.  “But God.”  I’m no different than the others.  God rewrote my script.  Which leaves me here today pondering the possibilities at the thought of surrender, over this life-long crutch of mine.  That’s when God stirs in my heart.  Once again He is speaking.  I listen.

It’s difficult for me to share anything I’ve learned without touching on lessons I’ve learned from a person or book, in some way or another.  Recently, I read a book called “Whisper” by Mark Batterson.  He mentioned a similar feeling over his competitive streak.  I discover here in this moment of stirring as I lean into God, He could be inviting me to a call that looks different that the one that I’ve been expecting.  Could the thing I’ve spent my entire life fighting be the very thing that He wants to use for His glory?  Maybe He doesn’t so much wish to remove it, but rather to sanctify it.  And use it.

God gave Paul a thorn in his flesh.  Three times he pleaded with the Lord to remove it.  But he didn’t.  Perhaps this is mine.  And that’s okay with me Lord.  Maybe my quirky obsessions were part of Your plan.  Built into YOUR vision- made for glory.  YOUR glory.  Something altogether bigger than me.

Can I be too obsessed with God and His heart?  His people and ways?  I think not!

May my obsession be for You alone, my Lord.  And my God.  You are God enough for me.  Even me, as me.

Let me “fix” my eyes on Jesus, the author and perfecter of my faith…  Hebrews 12:2

Can you relate to my struggle?

Friend, if you answered yes, can I tell you… you were made for more… so much more!! Perhaps the very thing that’s been in your way, God would love nothing more than to turn it inside out and upside down to turn your whole life around.  Maybe, just maybe He’s hiding your very best and biggest smiles inside the very same bottomless pit you call your frown.  Maybe the place you don’t want to look is exactly where you’ll find your joy.

Just look to your Maker.  The answers you seek just may be hidden in the way that He made you.  He’s laid out a path that’s intended to lead you to Him.  And He won’t let you down.  That’s a promise, my friend.  And brace yourself for a game changer.  Cause it’s not a promise from me, but from God.

He is faithful.  Will you let Him show you just how faithful He is?  Take hold of the promise.  He has set eternity in Your heart, dear sister.  Have you laid hold of that fact? It’s there to teach you how to grab hold of your Maker.  Will you go to Him… with your  whole heart?  He’s faithfully waiting to receive you.  With arms wide open, just as you are.

“It’s how He made you.”

 

Are You Hiding Too?

On the outside, it may not look so much like I struggle.  But trust me.  I do.  I’m more naturally an introvert, meaning internal.  ~Inwardly bent.~  You may not see it.  But the struggles are there.  They’re just hiding from us.  To be clear, us includes me. 

That’s why  it’s monumentally important for me to connect.   Now wait for it… On purpose.  I need you guys, and others to do life alongside me.  If only for this one invaluable reason.  You expose me.  To me.

I can’t address what I don’t even see, much less confess it.  And missing out on that would cost me something I truly can’t afford to miss out on.

Grace.

So its awkward.  I’m awkward.  But I must.  I must get out of my head.  And connect.  I owe it to myself.  And I owe it to Christ.  He gave me His life.  For exactly this.

Don’t miss out on the good stuff, my friends!  Grace is where the best stuff in life comes to life.

It’s here that I seize VICTORY!

Over myself.  And my faults.  I don’t have to live in bondage.  To me.  Or to anything else.

And you don’t either!

Grace is free.  Let’s not sell ourselves short of it, Friends.  We’re in this thing together.  Let us lean into that fact.

Even if it is a fight, let us fight the good fight, of faith.  Faith in what Jesus can do when we trust Him enough to join hands with the “one anothers” within our own reach.  They’re there.  They’re everywhere… If we look for them.  And reach out to them.

Chances are, they’re fighting too.  You may not see it.  But we’re all fighting something.

Sometimes, if we don’t push back against those thoughts in our heads, we very easily fall into the trap of fighting each other.  And that’s just what our enemy would love for us to do.  If that’s you, please allow me to warn you.  There’s very grave danger in fighting the wrong fight.  I am 100% on your side of this battle we wage in our heads.  I don’t want you to miss out on the freedom God has for you!  You’ll find it in grace. Grace that our enemy would rather we didn’t know we need.

Let me encourage you with all the love I have in me to push back against that impulse to hide.  Come out and play.  Do life with your friends.  Your sisters in Christ.  Fight the good fight.  It’s a fight worth the risk.

Trust me.

I’m fighting it too.

Friend, I’m here to encourage you.  There’s a whole force of sisters in your corner.  If these words stirred something up inside you, I’d love to invite you back!  Just sign up with your email, to hear more from my heart to yours, whenever God moves me to share.

You don’t have to fight alone!

So don’t.