Kelly Elders

What’s In Your Womb?

If you have ever been pregnant or close to someone who has then you know the anticipation that comes with pregnancy. We think of all the possibilities of what the baby will look like, what they will become and whether it’s a boy or girl. It’s a very exciting time for everyone involved.

What if we could walk with the same excitement of what we are carrying today. Each one of us are full of possibilities, dreams, potential, gifts and something to give. Yet, many of us walk along in life acting as if our womb is empty. We indulge in what we want not understanding it’s feeding what’s within us. Are we consuming things that will cause healthy growth or feeding something that will debilitate the dream within us? When we recognize that we are carrying something so precious we do everything to make sure we not only have a smooth delivery but a healthy strong baby. We eat better, we try to stay fit and read everything about the process! We need to have that same way of thinking when we carry out our dreams. You are pregnant with a promise and God intends to give you something that will bless you, your family and everyone connected to that dream.

Isaiah prophesied in Isaiah 7:14 that a young virgin would give birth to a son and call him Emmanuel, God is with us. I am sure this must’ve been the craziest prophecy since it didn’t even seem possible without a man. I am sure many young girls hoped they would be the special one. Maybe they grew up dreaming they would be the chosen girl as their parents shared the prophecy with them. Generation after generation waited for one young girl to give birth to their long awaited Messiah.

At this time only one young virgin would be chosen when today we are all called to take part. We each have been given something to carry and to carry to full term. We are challenged to give birth to something assigned to each one of us individually. It has our DNA on it and God has included us in the creation of something beautiful. It was beautifully designed around you and handcrafted to only operate through you.

So be intentional about what you are carrying on the inside of you. Get fit by renewing your mind with the word of God, feed your soul and read every resource concerning your dream. Feed your mind the knowledge needed. You are well able!

I’m Included!

GOD IS INCLUSIVE!

 

photo-1455215540020-876b3233799f One of the many reasons I love God is that He is inclusive. He is always including us into His story. We sometimes believe that God needs us to carry out His plan and purpose. The truth is God is God all by Himself. If He wanted, He could call forth an army of angels and clothe them with skin and they could save, deliver and heal as they spread the Word of God all over earth, yet He included us. He doesn’t even have to subject Himself to our economy, He is a creative God and could just make things appear, but He included us.

God is not limited to us but His desire is to move through us!

He includes us in His vision and invites us to take part. His hope is we will grab ahold of every opportunity set before us and run.

It’s time to partner with Him and carry out His purpose. We need to Change our way of giving to get and instead start giving to further His vision. He wants to share heaven, power, provision, favor and so much with us and all we need to do is link up with His plan. We bring our obedience and God brings everything else! For our own lives, we need to link up with Him and step out into whatever He has for us. I no longer have to be focused on the outcome just focused on my obedience. The outcome is up to God. He says one plants, one waters but He brings the increase or growth (1 Corinthians 3:7). We just obey by being available, willing and doing all that He says. Sometimes God isn’t so concerned with the outcome as much as He wants to see if you will do what He asks, when He asks. Don’t get me wrong God is all about increase but wants us to obey and trust in Him no matter the outcome.

I have decided to change my focus from the outcome to obedience. I don’t need to look at the outcome to decide if I have succeeded. I succeed when I am obedient to Him. How freeing is that? Don’t measure your success by your outcome but by your obedience. We tend to measure victory by how many people showed up, by how many people responded, by how much money did it produce but what if it was just about you being obedient?

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In Ezekiel 3:11 God instructed Ezekiel to go and say no matter the outcome.

“And go to the exiles, to the sons of your people, and speak to them and tell them, whether they listen or not, ‘Thus says the Lord GOD.”

Ezekiel’s obedience wasn’t based on the outcome but on his obedience to God. God wants us to be included through our obedience. He wants to fulfill His purpose on this earth and He has invited us to take part!

Choose today, to be determined to just obey and let God be responsible for the outcome!

3 Things About Marriage

Recently, we celebrated 29 years of marriage and it’s been eventful! We have had the opportunity to grow through some hard times whether it was financial hardship or staying committed we came through stronger and much wiser. I thought I would share some things I tell my daughter about marriage and things I wish someoe would have told me when I got married.

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Never Marry Someone’s Potential

So many times I may hear a person talk about how much potential someone has and though I believe everyone has potential I wouldn’t recommend you marry their potential. The problem is that not everyone will fulfill their potential. When you choose to spend forever with someone you have to accept them for who they are in that moment. It’s funny how men will marry a woman and never want her to change and a woman will marry a man hoping they will change. Ask yourself, if they never changed for the better would that be okay? Do you love them without trying to fix or repair them? You cannot always be the hero of their story. I married at the young age of 18 (which I don’t recommend) and thank God we were able to grow up together and accept the changes and the unchanged. Neither of us had any idea what our changes would look like or what areas would stay unchanged but one thing both of us had was commitment even though it was shaky at times. Our commitment first to God helped us never give up and here we are  29 years later and I am grateful for the good and even the worst of times. It’s made us stronger and much more appreciative and it helped me to learn to be a protector of our marriage. You will protect what you value.

Love & Forgiveness

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I had this understanding that marriage was all about staying in love and if you had love you would always be together. Every romance movie gave the impression it just works out in the end with no morning breath and a beautiful sunset into happy ever after. No one mentioned the many opportunities to forgive and the perseverance marriage takes. There is no greater relationship to learn to forgive than marriage. It’s not only because of the love you are able to forgive but the choice to forgive. If you can’t forgive the one you should trust the most in this world then you need more understanding of the fullness of God’s love. Things will be said that you can never take back, you will be disappointed at times and even wonder if it’s worth it but if both people can keep a servant’s heart, I guarantee it will be worth it. I wish I would have been free to love and be loved without holding back. Always testing the boundaries, not believing I could be loved forever and believing something bad was just around the corner seemed to hurt our relationship. It took many years to believe he would never leave or that he really could love me with all my flaws. So many of us go into relationship with abandonment and rejection issues that we begin to sabotage our relationships and then when they don’t work out we use it as proof that we are not worthy of love. You are worth being loved so much so that God even told husbands how they treat you is important.  

“In the same way, you husbands must give honor to your wives. Treat your wife with understanding as you live together. She may be weaker than you are, but she is your equal partner in God’s gift of new life. Treat her as you should so your prayers will not be hindered. 1 Peter 3:7 NLT

God loves you so much that He cares how you are treated! Can you believe He says this? He won’t even answer some prayers if you are not treated well by your spouse. I believe this goes both ways. In this time and culture women were not revered by men so He highlights it for the men but I am sure God would also tell the women that our prayers can be hindered if we mistreat our husbands. So be vulnerable to love knowing God cares about how you are loved.

Same Love, Same Team

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“Let love make you serve one another” Galatians 5:13 (TEV)

Sometimes we can forget that we are on the same team. There’s no winner unless both win. If you are so set on always winning then you truly love yourself more than anyone else in the relationship. Marriage is all about serving one another and meeting each other’s needs. You can be the best volunteer in church and serve every Sunday but if you don’t serve your spouse you might not understand servanthood. Serving starts in the home. If both husband and wife lived meeting the other’s needs you will have found the secret to a happy marriage. It has to start with someone so why not you? Remember, you are fighting for the same thing, a healthy marriage. Somehow we need to get rid of the feeling that we are going to get misused or it’s never going to work in our favor. That would be manipulation if you are only loving for something in return. The scripture says, “Perfect love casts out fear” 1 John 4:18. If you still carry some fear to freely love your spouse then you need to grow in God’s love. No one is keeping count on who loves who more and shows it more often. Sometimes we just need to realize we love each other differently and accept love differently. The best way we learned to understand our love languages was when we read the book “The 5 Love Languages” by Gary Chapman. I was loving the way I wanted to be loved instead of loving the way my husband needed to be loved. He was showing me love the way he desired to be shown love. When we have a heart to serve we will go to great lengths to learn to love in their language.

Whether you are single, married or starting over it’s never too late to improve your relationships or future relationships. Be Loved & Love Freely!

The Power of a Woman’s Influence

Never in history has the world embraced women the way it has in the last twenty years. They have risen to business and political positions and arenas that only men have obtained. Though the wage gap is still an issue we have come a long way since the 50’s. Sometimes the church seems to be behind in this area of women leading. Very few women lead or are allowed to lead in main roles in the church. We see this predominately in denominational churches due to misinterpreting of the scriptures. Sadly, women have allowed what people say to keep them from operating in their gifts and influence. Many women didn’t allow this belief system to stop them but they found an avenue to give even while it was prohibited.

“If we look at the history of revival movements, it is clear that whenever there has been a deepening of spiritual passion and holiness in the church, and a corresponding call to evangelism, women have responded to the call to ministry even when it was culturally unacceptable for them to do so. This was true during the Second Great Awakening in the United States, which unleashed an army of women to fund missionary movements and to lead the abolitionist cause. It was also obvious in the early days of the Pentecostal revival, which mobilized women preachers to blaze trails in foreign and domestic mission fields. These women, including healing evangelist Lilian Yeomans, Carrie Judd Montgomery, Minnie Draper, Ida Robinson, Aimee Semple McPherson and Florence Crawford, started churches that still flourish today.” Ministry Today

From the very beginning of mankind we (man and woman) were given influence to be fruitful, multiply, replenish, subdue and have dominion. The serpent described as the most cunning and crafty creature used by Satan to come after mankind to stop the purpose of God. Lucifer understood the power of influence especially because while he was in heaven he was able to convince a third of the angels to leave a perfect God in a perfect environment towards rebellion. Now that’s influence!

He used this same influence to deceive Eve and used her influence to lead Adam into sin. So why didn’t he approach Adam instead of Eve? Not because she was easier to deceive but I believe he was not only out to destroy our intimate relationship and the purpose of God but to rob women of their influence. After Eve was deceived she then used her influence towards Adam to take part and then sets into motion in society and culture that women can no longer but trusted or given the responsibility of influence.

Thank God for Jesus who came back to give women their rightful place and influence! We have a responsibility to use our influence wisely and as He directs. Jesus demonstrates over and over again in the new testament of how important we are as daughters to Him. He revealed himself as Messiah for the first time to the woman at the well and used her influence to draw a city to Christ. The first ones he sent to tell of His Resurrection were two women, Mary of Magdalene and Mary. He came to liberate us, not over men but along side of one another to be the church that God always intended us to be. When we fully understand our influence and use it responsibly we will see the Church like a city on a hill that cannot be hidden (Matthew 5:14).

If you want to increase your influence let’s look to see if these are a part of your character and identify where you can grow.

TRAITS OF AN INFLUENCER: By Dr. Karen Keller

Confidence You have to know who you are and whose you are!

“The FIRST requirement for being an influential person is knowing yourself” Dr. Karen Keller

When people see how confident you are in His Word, confident in His acceptance and in the Gift He gives you and confident in your Purpose the right people will connect and follow.

2. Commitment is the underlying force behind achievement. The more determined you are to reach a specific goal, especially in the face of adversity, the more likely you will succeed.

No one likes a quitter nor will follow one.

3. Courage is your strength to face difficult circumstances (or even difficult people) head on.

When things get tough you get stronger

When things get tough you show God greater

When things get tough you shine brighter

4. Passion is the fire in your spirit for what you do. It is the expression of your enthusiasm and your eagerness, and starts the engine for your success.

Passion is like a torch, it’s meant to see, lead and light others.

5. Empowering is your ability to support peers and share knowledge with them. It also includes how you reward people who make a contribution.

Not afraid to give power away

Surround yourself with those who maybe more gifted and have more wisdom or more knowledge

Propel people forward even if they pass you

6. Trustworthiness is a high virtue and is fairly self-explanatory. It is worth noting though that of all the influence traits, this is usually the most crucial. Lose trust, and you instantly lose influence.

Can God trust you and can others trust you?

7. Likability is more than being friendly. It’s your capacity to create positive attitudes in the people around you, and focus those attitudes towards a common goal. It is how positive people feel about themselves when with you.

I love being around people who make you feel better when you leave their presence. We should all desire to be that person.

We are called to be Influencers and to influence the world around us towards Christ!

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