As I am officially two weeks away from the launch of my book, I am amazed at how much the enemy wants to get a foothold in my mind.

Me holding my proof copy. I life-long dream come true!

I am a planner…sort of. I used to be fairly detail-oriented when I was younger and then I had 3 kids in four years, and it felt like organized chaos at best most days. However, as they got older, I have returned to being the organized one–in areas that matter to me anyway. One is the events and activities on the calendar. I hope I’m not alone here, but I thrive in our merged, color-coded calendar world. I love seeing the week ahead planned out with margin to make spontaneous adventures. But here is the temptation that I feel constantly invited to: You don’t have time/resources/abilities to accomplish the things on your calendar. This isn’t going to go well. If you were more organized/knowledgeable maybe you could be more successful.

What a lie! or a half truth anyway. See, I don’t actually have all of the things that can guarantee success, but I am in relationship with the One who does.

When life feels rushed or stressful, how is your thought life? Do you know how to flip the script?

We demolish arguments and every pretension that sets itself up against the knowledge of God, and we take captive every thought to make it obedient to Christ. 2 Corinthians 5:10

The discipline of taking my thoughts captive, the very act of being aware of what I’m thinking, is a journey in and of itself. It takes practice and time to form the habit, but it is a worthwhile venture.

This week I am taking that half-truth captive and telling it that I have a Heavenly Father who does not exist in time. He has gone before me to place provision where it is needed. I surrender to Him and His ways. He is in control.

When life gets stressful, what are your go-tos to manage the season? I have a few key disciplines that I can’t throw aside:

  1. Non-negotiable time in the Word. I need scripture to start my morning out in a way that reminds my flesh that I am submissive to Christ and His call on my life. I work hard to not touch my phone until I have had time in God’s Word. This also allows me to have set-aside time with the Holy Spirit abiding with Him from the start of the day will always be a winning decision.
  2. Practice gratitude. I write two sentences in my journal focused purely on gratitude. Simple, yet powerful.
  3. Drink plenty of water. When I am stressed or running a busy schedule, I find myself drawn to coffee. Hot when it’s cold out and iced in the summer months. Either way, too much caffeine kills my adrenals and ramps up the anxiety. After my first cup, I chose water…twice as much as the coffee I just had. No more coffee until the water is gone!
  4. Move my body. For me, running is a great stress reliever. I get out for a walk or run at least once a week and try to do small workouts another couple of days. Endorphins are a powerful thing, friend!
  5. Communicate with those around me. If I am feeling overwhelmed, it goes a long way in my home if I am lovingly clear with my husband and kids that I am in a tough season. If I do this in a calm moment, I can often avoid an explosive outburst when I feel the people in my home are not giving me grace…it is amazing how much more accomodating they are when they know what’s going on inside.

I would love to hear what your go-to list for support looks like. I pray you are able to contend with the invitation from the enemy when he tries to defeat you in the arena of your mind. Comment below and share your list with me. These practices take time to put into place, but that’s life: an incredible journey of becoming. For those of us following Christ, we are looking to become more like Him. More holy.

I love helping others discover ways to connect with their Creator. He designed you with proclivities and desires and a personality as unique as your fingerprint. In my new book The Fabulous Journey: Saying Yes to Becoming Holy I unpack a new way to look at the antiquated term sanctification. I also help you unpack ways to pursue growth in your relationship with God. It isn’t a cookie-cutter formula, but suggestions for areas to focus on.

Maturity takes time, it’s a long road, but a fabulous journey.

Graham Cooke

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