Have Faith In Your Future And Path In Life

Finding A Wonderland In The Wilderness

Give careful thought to the paths for your feet and be steadfast in your ways.

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We all have a path in life.

It's not always one that is as clear as a cloudless sky, but rather it's not as dark and clouded as the bottom of the ocean as we think. Though, it can definitely feel like that at times. We all struggle with figuring out what we want out of life. We struggle with how our lives are supposed to be lived to their full potential. We struggle with what our path has in store for us and how it'll lead us through life.

Throughout my life, I've had faith. A faith in humanity and most of all, a faith in my God. A God who doesn't let me down and won't. A God whose existence isn't one that's that apparent in today's fast-paced society. Yet, He is the one who has defined our paths long before we know them and yet our lives are this exploration of how we live them and what we live them for. Yet, we are supposed to "give careful thought to the paths for your feet and be steadfast in your ways" (Proverbs 4:26), but we don't. We live our lives like race cars on a track racing around and around and sometimes not giving thought to where we go and where we are headed or even should be headed. And I'm not talking about cars.

I recently talked about my hopes and fears, and despite the fact that they're something I face almost every day, it never gets easier articulating them. I have fears about my future, as do most people. I have fears about what I'll do with my life. I even have fears about the "here and now" aspect of life - but I also have hopes about what the next year will entail and the adventures that await.

It's hard to know exactly where you're going when you're stuck at a crossroads - wandering through a fog that doesn't seem to end, a tunnel that just ends. However you want to describe it, they all get the message across. And even with the fact of knowing that I'm not alone in this life, it doesn't make it any easier to face. Our life is supposed to be filled with these wonderlands throughout the wilderness that keep us safe, even if only temporary. Some wonderlands are these mirages that give us a false sense of security or hope, even. They fill us up, only to find out it was short-lived, while others are longer lasting and will accurately give us aspects of our lives that we need to fulfill to be full. This isn't to say that our forests can't be filled with an abundance of joy and fulfillment. But more times than not, our wildernesses seemed to leave us surrounded by these feelings that aren't always happily faced.

Personally, I find my wonderland in my faith. I find my wonderland in the little joys of my life - from the people I meet to the goals I strive to achieve to the excitements in life that leave you full of content and almost a sense of prosperity. I find happiness in knowing the people in my life. I find comfort in having no idea where my life will lead me. But sometimes the wilderness presents us with a crossroads where you feel surrounded by a forest that just seems to repeat itself, making you feel lost. It leaves you feeling barren and in a haze of confusion. However, getting through the dark parts of the wilderness leave you to thrive in the wonderlands. Walking through that dark forest surrounded by trees that seem to never end should only give you hope towards finding that next wonderland.

Our paths in life aren't always defined by what we do, but how we get there, even if it's only two steps forward and one step back. Our paths are there to guide us through life and the feelings of being at the bottom of the ocean are there to help us rise up and move on. Our path reveals itself in due time and sometimes the struggle is worth the end result.

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17 Empowering Bible Verses For Women

You go, girl.
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We all have those days where we let the negative thoughts that we're "not good enough," "not pretty enough" or "not smart enough" invade our minds. It's easy to lose hope in these situations and to feel like it would be easier to just give up. However, the Bible reminds us that these things that we tell ourselves are not true and it gives us the affirmations that we need. Let these verses give you the power and motivation that you're lacking.

1. Proverbs 31:25

"She is clothed with strength and dignity and she laughs without fear of the future."

2. Psalm 46:5

"God is within her, she will not fall."

3. Luke 1:45

"Blessed is she who believed that the Lord would fulfill His promises to her."

4. Proverbs 31:17

"She is energetic and strong, a hard worker."

5. Psalm 28:7

"The Lord is my strength and my shield."

6. Proverbs 11:16

"A gracious woman gains respect, but ruthless men gain only wealth."

7. Joshua 1:9

"Be strong and courageous! Do not be afraid or discouraged. For the Lord your God is with you wherever you go."

8. Proverbs 31:30

"Charm is deceptive, and beauty does not last; but a woman who fears the Lord will be greatly praised."

9. 1 Corinthians 15:10

"By the grace of God, I am what I am."

10. Proverbs 31:26

"When she speaks, her words are wise, and she gives instructions with kindness."

11. Psalm 139:14

"I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made."

12. 1 Peter 3:3-4

"Don't be concerned about the outward beauty of fancy hairstyles, expensive jewelry, or beautiful clothes. You should clothe yourselves instead with the beauty that comes from within, the unfading beauty of a gentle and quiet spirit, which is so precious to God."

13. Colossians 2:10

"And in Christ you have been brought to fullness."

14. 2 Timothy 1:7

"For God has not given us a spirit of fear and timidity, but of power, love, and self-discipline."

15. Jeremiah 29:11

"'For I know the plans I have for you,' says the Lord. 'They are plans for good and not for disaster, to give you a future and a hope.'"

16. Exodus 14:14

"The Lord himself will fight for you. Just stay calm."

17. Song of Songs 4:7

"You are altogether beautiful, my darling, beautiful in every way."

Next time you're feeling discouraged or weak, come back to these verses and use them to give you the strength and power that you need to conquer your battles.

Cover Image Credit: Julia Waterbury

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What A Blessing It Is To Have Been Loved By A Grandpa Like You

No one could ever replace your contagious giggle and radiating love.

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To my newest angel in heaven...

Grandpa Norb, I just wanted to write to you to let you know how great it is to be loved by a grandpa like you. With 4 children, 4 children in-law, 10 grandchildren and 9 great-grandchildren, we all know in our different ways your love for us. While you are no longer here, I am certain that you will always be watching over us and in our hearts.

Knowing you for 20 years, I can't imagine feeling more loved. Every holiday gathering started with you wishing a Merry Christmas, no matter the actual holiday. You always welcomed with a hug, and said goodbye with open arms, a kiss on the cheek and a whispered reminder that I am always in your prayers. Even with you no longer with us, I know you'll be watching over and praying for me as I carry on my steps in life.

Like a sunflower, you were always bright and smiling when I saw you. You showed your excitement when I walked in the room and made me feel lucky to be around you and overjoyed to know you just through your smile. You were the patriarch of our wonderful family standing tall and showering us with radiating love and goofiness.

Among us all, you loved Grandma with your whole heart and were married for 68 beautiful years. Watching her say goodbye has been one of the hardest things to see, but completely overpowering, the love you had for each other. As long as I knew you, I don't think I ever saw the two of you apart. The unconditional love that you had and always will feel for each other is one that I envy to have in my own relationships.

As almost two weeks have passed since God brought you to him, this is my goodbye to you. I will never forget the last good day I spent with you and Grandma together. I will think of you when I see yellow sunflowers standing tall and bright, and during thunderstorms as if it is you Grandpa Ray bowling together up in heaven.

I feel incredibly lucky to know you and have been loved by you for 20 of your 94 years, and I will always miss you.

Love,

Blondie.

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