Author: LaToya Edwards

Stepping out in Faith

I am not a risk taker. I don’t go searching for adventure. I like to have a very detailed plan and a backup plan. I find comfort in not having to guess about anything. I want to know exactly what I need to do to get from point A to point B.

God doesn’t always work like that.

In my experience God just says go or do.

I want to be obedient to His calling on my life. I want to serve and be a blessing to many people. But I also wants to know all the details. I have a hard time taking that first step when I don’t know the end game.

Stepping out in Faith

This season has been a lot of me learning the value in stepping out on faith. This is good. 

I feel like I’ve been standing on a the edge of the cliff waiting for God to do something wonderful in my life.  Over the past year there have been times when He has given me clear and specific directions to follow. But the closer that I get to the edge of the cliff the less of the plan He chooses to share.

Honestly that has caused a lot of fear and anxiety. I’m worried that I have misheard His directions. I’m worried about failing. I’m worried about making a mistake.  I’m afraid that if I take that step off the cliff I’m going to fall.

I’m having a crisis of faith.

Faith shows the reality of what we hope for; it is the evidence of things we cannot see. Hebrews 11:1 NLT

I definitely believe that God is going to fulfill every promise that He has given to me. I know that He is able. But I have been struggling with those things that I can’t see. My human eyes are having a hard time catching up with my spiritual eyes.

LaToya Edwards - Faith

I have to remind myself that God’s ways are not my ways. And that if I could figure out the way to victory on my own I wouldn’t need Him.  That’s where trust and surrender come in.  Those are two keys to blind faith in God.

So I keep walking, one baby step at a time towards the voice of my Heavenly Father. He simply says “Come, my daughter”.   I know that like Peter, as long as I keep my eyes on the Lord I will be safe.  And I also know that if I fall He will be right there to catch me. Stepping out on faith is a blessed thing.

If God has promised you something, hold onto His word. Trust that He knows the way even when you can’t see it. Take that leap of faith knowing that you will be safe in His loving arms.

Finding Joy in the Pain

It had been a very hard week. It seemed like the days just kept getting harder and harder. I was emotionally drained and exhausted.  I just wasn’t sure how I was going to make it through one more setback, one more decision, or one more day.  I wasn’t even time for lunch yet.

joy in pain

Count it all joy, my brothers, when you meet trials of various kinds, James 1:2 ESV

I was having a hard time counting it all joy in that moment. I was definitely meeting trials of various kinds: financial struggles, health issues, my kids, my own attitude, and my extended family.  How in the world could I find joy in all the pain and heartache that I was going through.

for you know that the testing of your faith produces steadfastness. James 1:3 ESV

One thing that I have learned about hard times is that God will use these opportunities to see if we really believe what we say we believe. He wants to see if we will continue to stand firm on His promises when things look hopeless or if we will give into fear and doubt.

I’ve learned that faith is a muscle. The more I use it the stronger that it gets. When I consistently believe in God for the small things He often blows my mind by coming through in ways that I never imagined. When I was struggling financially and my work continued to get less and less I thought for sure God has lost His mind.

Here I was, praying for a financial miracle, working as hard as I could to provide and be a good steward of the limited resources that I had and it seemed like I was being punished for my good works. Lord I need more money why is my client load dropping?

I didn’t know it at the time but God was setting me up for a divine intervention. Over the course of a few days different people blessed my family with enough money to carry us through for  a while. And when that provision ran out God did it again and again. And one day I realized that I was no longer worried over my finances.

more peace and joy

And if God was going to take care of my finances then surely He would take care of the rest as well.

And let steadfastness have its full effect, that you may be perfect and complete, lacking in nothing. James 1:4ESV

Those were some hard days and a hard lesson. But in the end I was able to stand firm and say with certainty that my God is a provider! That is something that no one can ever make me doubt or question no matter how hard things my be. And this is why we can count it all joy.

When we make it to the end of the trial we will know God on a much deeper level then we did before and we will have more peace and joy than we know what to do with.

What real love looks like

It had been a very hard day. Actually there had been many hard days recently. I was worn out and exhausted but my son needed to talk to me. There has been many sleepless nights in our little home over the past year and a half as we tried to heal and move forward from life with an unsafe person.

My sweet boy had looked evil in the face and he was struggling to understand why God would let this happen if He really loved us. And as the months have gone by with (what seems to him) no answers to our prayers he has been asking some really big questions.

Real Love

When someone tells you that they love you but they keep hurting you it’s confusing. Doesn’t matter if you are in your 30s or barely into your teens.  Our painful experience had done more than damage our hearts … it has made us question God’s love for us.

My heart broke for my son that night because he was echoing the cries of my broken heart as well. I had spent many nights asking God why He allowed so much suffering in our lives.  I pulled my boy close and I opened my Bible and began to read.

Love is patient and kind; love does not envy or boast; it is not arrogant or rude. It does not insist on its own way; it is not irritable or resentful; it does not rejoice at wrongdoing, but rejoices with the truth. Love bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things. 1 Corinthians 13:4-6 ESV

 

We began to talk about the person that had promised to love us but then hurt us.  We asked if he had been patient or kind and worked our way through the rest of the verse.  It was something that we had done many times before. While this person had promised to love, honor, protect and provide those words ended being empty promises. When held up to the light of the scripture the truth was clear.

 

I turned the pages to a different verse:

 

Anyone who does not love does not know God, because God is love. 1 John 4:8 ESV
God wants more for you
My sweet boy looked up at me and sighed. “So God does love us Mama? And {that other person} did not?”  The truth of God’s real love was beginning to take root in his heart. And through a few tears we share all the ways that God was all the things that we read in 1 Corinthians.

 

Sweet friend, I don’t know what you are facing today. But I want to encourage you to remember what real love looks like. Teach it to your children. And when something less than comes around, hold on to the truth that God wants more for you!

 

We hope this devotional series is blessing you in your motherhood and your walk with the Father. Please enjoy this printable coloring page, take a few minutes to slow down…breathe…remember God wants more for you!
Be blessed! 

Praise Your Way to Victory

When you are going through the hardest time in your life the last thing that you want to do is praise. I can relate ….

I sat in the pew at a new church for weeks. I was desperate for the Word and a safe place to warm the bench while I started to heal from church hurt and other things that had been going on. So I sat.

While worship service went on I sat and looked around. I wanted to join in with the singing and praises but my heart was too broken and heavy. I was worn out just trying to get to church on Sunday morning. My burdens were weighing me down and no matter how I tried I could not lift my hands or sing.

So I sat.

Until one Sunday the worship leader said something that started to shake the chains off my heart and voice. “Your victory is in your praise. The size of your praise will determine the size of your blessing.”

praise brings peace

I was desperate for breakthrough in my circumstance so I took a chance. I stood up. Lifted my hands and began to mouth the words. After the first song I was able to whisper the words. By the third, the tears were flowing and I was crying out to the Lord. By the end of the service that burden was lifted off my shoulders.

Do you know that praise confuses the enemy?

Don’t allow the devil to steal your praise. It is what focuses your heart on God and helps to bring you peace and victory. When you are praising the Lord you are not worried about the devil or your circumstances. You are solely focused on the One that loves you and will see you through. (If you aren’t then you aren’t doing it right)

The devil doesn’t understand praise. He doesn’t understand how you can praise when your world is falling apart. He doesn’t understand why you would thank God for all the hard times you’ve been walking through. That’s a good thing.

We want to confound and confuse the devil. That’s one way to resist him. And when we resist him he has to flee.

Praise your way to victory

There’s a story in Joshua about a group of people that found a great victory through praise in obedience to God.

So the people shouted, and the trumpets were blown. As soon as the people heard the sound of the trumpet, the people shouted a great shout, and the wall fell down flat, so that the people went up into the city, every man straight before him, and they captured the city. Joshua 6:20 ESV

I’m not sure what you are dealing with sweet mama, but I do know that you will begin to walk in victory when you start to praise. Praise God for His goodness. Praise Him for all that you need Him to be right now. Don’t stop praising until you feel at peace.