My friend Vickie invited me to share my story on how I came to Christ at her church, in which her husband pastors at (Pastor Schmidt). I had it on my calendar for several weeks and wondered if I should make notes on what to say. I decided I did not want to make notes or think much about what I was going to say at all! I felt for my first testimonial, it would be best if I did not try to premeditate what I would say. I was hoping I would connect to the Holy Spirit and have Him work through me. When I testified this morning, I think He did work through me at times. My hope is for the Holy Spirit to work through me more and more as I strengthen my relationship with God.
My previous blog was about letting go of ego-centered Vision Boards, and this morning when I testified, it felt like an extension of that. Beyond looking past ego-centered Vision Boards, I can even let go of how the very next moment will unfold and trust in God. It felt freeing.
In the past, I tried hard to try to appear perfect, sound perfect, and be perfect. Now, I don't concern myself with that as much because I know I am not perfect and never will be perfect and that is okay. At the same time, I do not allow myself to be a passive Christian and just say, "Oh well, I was born a sinner and there's nothing I can do about it!" To me, this is not what being a Christian is about whatsoever! Through the help of His Grace, my faith, and studying his Word, He can help to purify my heart more and more and shape me more into the image of Him. As a Christian, this is how I strive to live. I will NEVER be a perfect example, but I want to spread the Good News and have God use me the way He wants to use me.
Here are a few photos of me testifying this morning and a video of my entire testimony on YouTube with lots of imperfections on my "delivery" but nevertheless the essence is there! Enjoy <3
If you want to follow along, I opened my testimony with Psalm 71.
I used to be OBSESSED with vision boards. And I mean OBSESSED. Ever since I watched the DVD and read the book The Secret in 2006, I made vision boards frequently because it seemed that most of what I wrote down and drew out manifested! It seemed like I was able to manifest boyfriends, massage therapists, chiropractors, private drivers, car detailers, trips to other countries, and beautiful places to live relatively easily - at least easier than my peers.
So why in the world would I STOP using vision boards if they seemed to work so well? Well, several reasons:
1) I BECAME A SPOILED BRAT
Once in awhile things on my vision board wouldn't manifest or they wouldn't manifest as fast I wanted them to, and this would frustrate the heck out of me. And this would make me lose sight of what I did have. I admit, I got a bit spoiled with most things on my board manifesting quickly. Even though I was good at manifesting most of what was on my vision board, I wanted EVERYTHING to manifest quickly! I had no concept of "God's timing" and "God's will" for me. Everything was about what I wanted, my desires. My world became self-centered, not God-centered.
2) I WAS HAPPY THINGS DIDN'T WORK OUT ON MY VISION BOARD
Even though most of what I put on my vision boards came true, some things didn't come into fruition. Although I would throw a fit in the beginning, overtime, I was often THANKFUL that things didn't work out and something else happened instead. For example, I remember being accepted into Ballet West's Academy Ballet; however, my family didn't want to help pay for me to attend, and I ended up not going. I was angry for many years about this. Until later, I discovered that I liked Vaganova ballet training SO MUCH MORE, and if I had gone to Ballet West, the ballet technique I would have learned there would have conflicted with what I am learning now. So I am THANKFUL my original vision didn't work out for me!
3) I REALIZED IT WAS SO MUCH EASIER TO LET GOD LEAD!
For me, I realized creating Vision Boards stemmed from a place of wanting to CONTROL the outcomes of my life, and sometimes even the outcomes of other people's life. And this is a definitely a problem. Like I said, sometimes, it seemed like I was successful controlling outcomes. But sometimes I wasn't, and when I wasn't, this was devastating to me. I became ATTACHED to my vision, and attachment can cause a lot of pain when things don't go according to plan. And so when I started to let go of what I wanted for myself and others, life became SO MUCH EASIER! This is not to say I believe in becoming a vegetable and never taking action - NOT AT ALL! It is important to take action towards God's will for ourselves. That's the difference! Take action for God's will, not our own. And the way to tune into what God wants for us is to develop a relationship with Him through having faith, praying, and studying His word.
I want to make clear that I am NOT bashing Vision Boards, goal-setting, etc. I think getting clear on personal goals is great and making Vision Boards can be helpful. However, the fine line for me is to NOT GET ATTACHED to my personal vision and to stay open to the bigger vision (God's vision). When I do this, life is more brilliant and more fulfilling. I feel a sense of freedom from letting go of what I want and trusting in what He wants for me, which is always something greater than I can imagine! Every day, I have to be cognizant of whether I am following my will or His will. It is easy for my ego to creep in and try to trick me saying, "Oh this is God's will," when in reality it is my ego's will!
Be careful! Be vigilant! And most of all, be honest with yourself. If we tune in with the Holy Spirit, we will know the truth of where our behavior stems from!