Tuesday, March 04, 2014

Loving the Journey, No Matter Where God Leads You by Susan Tolles, Guest Blogger and Life Purpose Coach® Student Founder, Flourish Over 50 Certified Dream Coach and Professional Speaker "We can make our plans, but the final outcome is in God’s hands." Prov 16:1 There has been no time in my life when this verse has been more evident. You see, recently a 22-year journey searching for my birth mother came to an end in a very unexpected way. My quest to find my roots and discover my medical history began in 1991. As a young mother, I also wanted to thank my mother for the painful decision she made, one that I knew must have broken her heart. My search took many twists and turns over the years, hitting dead-ends and involving many volunteer helpers called “search angels.” Knowing that God's timing was obviously different than mine, I waited patiently for a big break, accepting that His plan for my life might not include connecting with the mother who had given me up for adoption when I was 10 days old. With my vivid imagination, different scenarios played out in my mind--would she be there with a loving embrace, or would she reject me? Would she still be alive? Would I have brothers and sisters to bless my life? Of course, I preferred the fairy-tale ending, when I would live happily ever after in a close relationship with my birth mother and several half-siblings. October, 2013 was the time God had chosen for "the big reveal." DNA testing I had done in the spring finally connected me with several cousins, and I began tracing them to a woman who I had considered a possible match over 20 years earlier. So many emotions ran through my heart and mind as I thanked God in awe for what He was doing. Why now? What was His plan? Would this be the fairy tale ending I'd dreamed of? As the clues rapidly opened up, what I found left me speechless. My birth parents had married, and I had three full siblings--two brothers and a sister. God's blessing: my sister's faith in Christ is strong like mine, and one of my brothers is also a Believer. God's challenge for me: my mother and oldest brother have turned from God. My mother says she does not want to meet me, so I count it as her loss, not mine. The new journey has begun, and I am anxiously awaiting what God has planned. The unexpected outcome has brought joys beyond my greatest expectations, and has taught me lessons about myself, my faith and the way I look at the future. Our lives take us on many journeys, often taking us to places we never imagine. What is important is to love the journey God has lays out before us, embracing the highs and lows and occasional unexpected detours, anxiously awaiting what is around the next bend. No matter where you are on your current path, remember these things: • Love the life God gives you, and be content knowing that He loves you--that's all that really matters. Discover the purpose He has for you, fulfill it with gusto, and live a life that is pleasing to Him with joy and dedication. You never know what He has in store, farther on down the road. As Paul said in Philippians 4, "I have learned by now to be quite content whatever my circumstances....Whatever I have, wherever I am, I can make it through anything in the One who makes me who I am." Personally, I never thought I was inadequate or incomplete. Though there was a "puzzle piece" missing from my life, I knew I didn't need to be anything more in God's eyes. If I never found that missing piece, I would still be content in being His child. • Love the timing He has for you. After searching for several years, I acknowledged God had a different plan, and was able to let go of the obsession that had developed through my hours of research. Surrendering to His timing erased the frustration and disappointment that I felt over and over, every time I hit a dead end. For your journey, remember that God has a plan, and He has the end in sight from the very start. Be obedient, seek His guidance, and wait patiently. His timing is perfect, no matter how long it takes. • Love the outcome He provides for you, no matter what it is. I never imagined that I would have full siblings, and my fantasy stories certainly never included a mother who rejects God. However, I am thrilled to have a sister to share the rest of my life with, and a brother who has welcomed his new "big sister" into his family with open arms. Even if I never meet my birth mother face to face, I now have the answers I sought for over 22 years. This is how God wanted it to be right now, for His plan. I am blessed beyond measure at this destination I have reached. This is a new beginning, with joys already celebrated, and surprises yet revealed. Now, more than ever, I am open to where God is leading me, and how He will use me to affect the lives of others. It is all part of His plan, and I am ready for the ride. What about you and your current path and learnings? Would love to hear from you, so leave a Comment for me and others to enjoy!

Thursday, February 13, 2014

NEGATIVITY: WHAT'S YOUR EXPERIENCE WITH IT?

GUEST BLOGGER FOR LIFE PURPOSE COACHING CENTERS INTERNATIONAL®: DR. JOHN FERNANDEZ, LIFE PURPOSE COACH® Are you a glass-half-full or glass-half-empty person? Personality does have an impact on how an individual responds, but we should emphasize that the Word of God should have a greater impact than personality. We see negative responses quite often in our dealings with others. Sometimes we may “inadvertently” utter a negative response ourselves. But what is a negative response or negativity anyway? We get a clue about this from many scriptures; for example, Philippians 2:14-16 says: “Do all things without grumbling or questioning, that you may be blameless and innocent, children of God without blemish in the midst of a crooked and twisted generation, among whom you shine as lights in the world, holding fast to the word of life, so that in the day of Christ I may be proud that I did not run in vain or labor in vain.” Notice that it says “do all things” not “most things” or “some things.” Paul also tells us in Ephesians 4:29: “Let no corrupting talk come out of your mouths, but only such as is good for building up, as fits the occasion, that it may give grace to those who hear.” I think these are amazing verses that call for heroic responses from us. While still on this earth we can’t always be 100% vigilant over our words and attitudes; we need a better approach. Ezekiel 36-26a gives us the answer: “And I will give you a new heart, and a new spirit I will put within you.” We then learn from Galatians 5:22-23 that “the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control; against such things there is no law.” As a Christian, we have the power of the Holy Spirit to resist negativity and respond with the fruit of the Spirit. We are called to rest in the Lord and yield to His Holy Spirit. But God also commands action on our part (Phil 4:8): “Finally, brothers, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is just, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is commendable, if there is any excellence, if there is anything worthy of praise, think about these things.” We do still fail from time to time, but it is our pursuit of excellence in the little things that will yield great benefits for the Kingdom of God. James 1:2-4 tells us: “Count it all joy, my brothers, when you meet trials of various kinds, for you know that the testing of your faith produces steadfastness. And let steadfastness have its full effect, that you may be perfect and complete, lacking in nothing.” In pursuing excellence, we seek to take every thought captive (Rom 12:2): “Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewal of your mind, that by testing you may discern what is the will of God, what is good and acceptable and perfect.” We are called to walk (Eph 4:1-3) “in a manner worthy of the calling to which you have been called, with all humility and gentleness, with patience, bearing with one another in love, eager to maintain the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace.” We can succeed because (2 Tim 1:7) “God gave us a spirit not of fear but of power and love and self-control.” So let us “give thanks in all circumstances; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus” (1 Thes 5:18). And we are called not to “be anxious about anything” (Phil 4:6a) but to “trust in the LORD with all your heart, and do not lean on your own understanding” (Prov 3:5). Negativity is not from God. It's a failing of our human nature, and something that Satan uses against us and the Kingdom of God. We need to live one day, one moment, at a time, giving our wills and our lives over to God. The Holy Spirit will lead us if we let him, and get out of his way. We must be constantly living as John the Baptist expounds in John 3:30: “He [Christ] must increase, but I must decrease.” Pray that your thoughts, words and attitude of your heart be always guided by the Lord, and that you are always a peaceful, loving, gentle, joyful and positive Christian witness. WHAT ARE YOUR THOUGHTS? BLOG WITH US! (Dr. John Fernandez, Life Purpose Coach®, TEXAS www.corpuschrisitlifecoaching.com. EMAIL: fernandezjm@sbcglobal.net

Wednesday, January 08, 2014

I have this intense (overwhelming) feeling that 2014 must be a serious year of prayer. With so many people so sick with so many different ailments (ranging from flu and pneumonia to brain tumors and other cancers, depression, etc.) and problems (ranging from unemployment to caring for elderly parents or rebellious teens; sub-freezing temperatures or drought or tornadoes; marital unfaithfulness; suicide rates; etc.) - THIS MUST BE A YEAR OF PRAYER. I'd love to hear and pray for your prayer requests and praise reports. [Post them here!] My selfish prayer is that this 4-week bacterial sinusitis and viral bronchitis will pass soon, so I can pray more heartily and report back to my employer...Our Lord Jesus Christ who reigns supreme! How do you feel about the world's current need for fervent prayer? Blessings, --Katie Brazelton, PhD, MDiv, MA --Bestselling Author/Speaker (8 Books/DVDs) + Life Purpose Coach® --Founder, Life Purpose Coaching Centers International® --Strategist and Consultant, Church-Based, Life Purpose Coaching Centers! --Board Member, International Christian Coaching Association --Board Member, Rockbridge Seminary --Educational Dean, Full Circle Outreach, a substance abuse treatment center --See Facebook, Twitter, Linkedin, Founder's Blog, Character Makeover Blog --COMPLIMENTARY E-NEWSLETTER...www.LifePurposeCoachingCenters.com

Tuesday, August 13, 2013

To whom or for what are you grateful -- and why?

To whom or for what are you grateful -- and why? For example, for your recovery from a shopping addiction or eating disorder; your personal space; your income; your faith walk; your hope; your family and/or friends? How could a Life Purpose Coach® or a Certified Recovery Coach help you move from the next step after gratitude, which is desiring to discover and fulfill God's plan for your life?

Monday, July 08, 2013

Is God calling you to be a Recovery Coach?

"What is a Recovery Coach?" Such a coach specializes in helping clients recover from addictions and related challenges that anchor their souls and prevent them from moving forward with life purpose, i.e., due to issues involving anger/rage, depression, alcohol or other substances, gambling, sex, pornography, abuse, shopping, eating disorders, relationship problems, anxiety, stress, enabling, etc. 
However, to be clear, a Recovery Coach is not an Intervention Coach (that niche or specialty area is offered as one of our advanced recovery classes). Nor is he/she a Sober Companion who monitors the daily life of an addict or a Sponsor who is a go-to volunteer, a recovering addict with a strong desire to give back to the recovery community by helping others. More specifically, our Recovery Coaches help clients answer the age-old question: "What on earth am I here for?" by using...

The Twelve Steps for Believers©: Where Recovery and Purpose Intersect; a personal copyright granted to Life Purpose Coaching Centers International® by Alcoholics Anonymous®--for use with Christians. 

(You can see God's hand in that!)


If God is calling you to be a Recovery Coach, join us on a Tele-Conference Call on Monday, July 29, 5:30-6:30pm Pacific Time, to introduce the course to you and to get your questions answered. Just go to our website and use the CONTACT FORM or post a comment here, and we'll get back to you with the CHAT details for the 29th.

Pre-requisites for taking this Recovery Coach course this fall are LPCCI's Course #101+201+301 or the LPCCI Professional Master Life Coaching course. (If you need to work on your prerequisites, please let us know right away! You still have time to meet the very important, foundational, non-negotiable requirements this summer.)

Monday, February 11, 2013

My son keeps telling me to lighten up this BLOG!

My son keeps telling me to lighten up this BLOG!

So...I know I'm not supposed to post questions like this: Did you shave today? What's your fav TV show? What did you have for lunch?

I'm sorry, but I just don't know how to lighten it up, without going to this other extreme! Somebody jump in here and help me before I make a fool of myself. What fun question do you suggest I try -- one that others would enjoy hearing a response to from me and other readers!?

I'll take all the help I can get in this cyberspace mindset,
Katie

Tuesday, February 05, 2013

Prayers Appreciated

Final edits happening from now through March 8th on my newest book, One Year Recovery Devotional: Where the Road to Recovery Intersects with the Pathway to Purpose. Prayers appreciated, especially if I have to juggle Jury Duty the week of March 4th. Tyndale has six layers of editors doing their thing, as we speak -- checking in with me (via one source) weekly for my input. It's a remarkable process, but it's also stressful. Only the Holy Spirit will see us through to cover and interior design -- and onto the bookstore shelves and sites! Thanks for your prayers, Katieb