Don’t Box with God!

A little over a year ago, I listed a house to sell. In a short time, I was heading out of the country and really wanted to be in contract by the time I left. No problem! I just KNEW it would be an easy sale. The house was only a year old! I prayed, had it staged, invested in a great marketing system, and scheduled my OPEN HOUSE dates. I honestly expected to only have to do one OPEN HOUSE though. I knew this particular floor plan was limited in this development and was in high demand.
The most ridiculous things started happening. And I do mean ridiculous. I fell out of contract before the ink had a chance to dry. At that point I had been in real estate for twelve years and had never heard of such a thing that happened, happening. JUST BIZARRE!!! Then, there was all of this interest, but no bites for no particular reason.
I go out of the country trying to manage phone calls while I’m a whole day ahead and busy with a full schedule. When I returned, the client was in danger of losing her deposit and another house that was being built, because her offer was contingent (upon the sale of this subject property). It was a MESS that made NO SENSE!!! I WAS STRESSED OUT!
Finally, one Saturday morning I prayed, “Father, I need you to show me what is going on. In warfare I have You on my side and I don’t struggle like this. I’m out here getting mollywapped, and that is leading me to believe I’m not fighting the enemy, but that I’m fighting YOU. I know I can’t win a fight with you! Am I fighting You? Are You keeping the house from selling???”
*ding*ding*ding* I had finally asked the right question. I offered the right prayer. He revealed the house hadn’t sold, because He wanted ME to move into it. Only this meant a relocation. A relocation I hadn’t planned for. A relocation I didn’t want!
I asked Him to confirm it while I was out of town that weekend at a prayer retreat. I vowed I would obey His answer, I just needed to be SURE. He confirmed. I cried for a week before asking Him to deal with my heart concerning the matter. I was expecting to relocate, but I thought it would be to Dallas or LA. I wanted my heart’s desires to match His. I didn’t want to obey grudgingly.
Two months later, I was out!!! And let me tell you this. It wasn’t until the morning after I spent the first night in the house that I walked out of my bedroom and realized I NEEDED the move. I had been suffocating and didn’t even know it. I had become so used to my atmosphere, that I didn’t realize the season was up, and that staying longer would have put me out of alignment with the next leg of my journey. Time was of the essence. There were connections that needed to be made, and relationships that needed to form. And my face needed to be in the new territory for the hand shakes and dinner dates to happen. If you’ve ever traveled, you know that “connecting flights” are critical and are the reason you do or don’t get to your destination on time. Sure, we’d all like a direct flight, but sometimes paths need to cross, a person critical to our journey is flying out from a different airport, and is en route to wrap up an assignment in a city we aren’t designated. The connecting flight the two of you have in common reveals the next move to and for you both!
Lots of supernatural occurrences happened throughout this transition, but I will abstain from sharing for now, due to the length of this post.
My point: Because of our humanity, we don’t like to suffer. We don’t like discomfort. And often times when we encounter discomfort, setbacks, suffering and/or a lack of fulfillment, we assume it has to be the enemy. Not so!
Sometimes it is God! Sometimes, He’s pushing us to higher heights, deeper depths, and a place of humility and service that is outside of our comfort zones and realms of familiarity. We’re being pushed out of the nest! Sometimes the pain and inconvenience is TOTALLY GOD!
Look at Jesus! NOTHING was comfortable or convenient about His trip to the cross, yet it pleased and glorified God.
Submit, surrender, and don’t give up. He’s got a plan for you, and it is GOOD even when the process FEELS contrary.
Oh and let me tell you this…. the house that wouldn’t sell? Yeah, the one I live in! There hasn’t been ONE month that has passed since I submitted and moved in, that someone hasn’t called to buy the house. Some are rather aggressive asking when it will be back on the market! What can they offer!!? When God holds something up, He holds it up! When He releases it, He releases it! He holds the POWER!!! When we strive with Him, we WILL NOT win!

Guilty!!!

I’m guilty. I don’t just mean in the past, but lately. I’ve been guilty of frustration. Guilty of impatience. We do know that patience isn’t waiting right? We’re going to wait regardless when it comes to what only God can release. Patience is actually waiting with the right attitude. We can murmur, complain and pout while we wait, or we can trust, praise and rejoice in the promise that is on the other end of our wait.

I became frustrated, because I couldn’t understand the point. I couldn’t understand why He has revealed some of the things He has, if CLEARLY some of the things aren’t coming to pass any time soon. Sometimes, when hope hurts, you’d just rather not know. Ignorance can be bliss at times. But when He reveals His plan and purpose you have to deal with the burden of conforming to His divine schedule. So I ask questions like… why did you show me if I was just going to remain irritated by the process? Why did I even have to know?

He had a talk with me today to remind me that it isn’t about my conveniences, but His purpose. And He also reminded me that cooperating with Him during the process is the same as cooperating with Him for the plan itself. A sous chef doesn’t get the credit, but certainly has responsibilities and must take orders and execute as the meal is prepared. The longer a sous chef works beside an executive chef, the more they learn, and the better they become.

So AGAIN, my heart has been restored. I needed it restored AGAIN. And I told Him tonight, that I commit to his purpose AND His schedule (ARRRGGGGHHHH it’s KILLING ME…. I guess that’s the point). I desire to execute my role in His plan with complete synchronicity, virtue and excellence. I am walking this out WITH Him. It’s His plan., so it will be accomplished in HIS time. Inhale… Exhale… Inhale….. Exhale…

Psalm 119:133 is my anthem right now. No iniquity!!! No iniquity tied to doubt, fear, frustration, impatience, bitterness, intolerance, pride….. NO INIQUITY!!! (If you read the scripture you’ll get what I’m saying)

We should feel honored to have a role at all!

Perspective is key….Selah

Seasons Change…

Seasons change. I have loved people that I’ve had to release, whether because of death, marriage, miles or just the expiration of a season. As life shifts, sometimes configurations change. You’ve heard it before, you have some relationships for a reason, some for a season and some for a lifetime. Not all endings are bad and bitter.
That said, I cherish the moments, use my words, write letters, send messages and give gifts. I know I mustn’t hold on and prolong anything beyond the season for which it is purposed. I must yield to His plan and respect His course. My endeavor is to make sure that when one reflects across the miles and memories, the sunsets and secrets, the gifts and gains, when a person remembers me and thinks of our time and season of doing life together, they remember honesty, safety, laughter and loyalty…and they simply remember being loved. ❤️❤️❤️ #kelsimarie

Missed Opportunities…

I remember one day at church many years ago, the Holy Spirit told me to go ask an older gentleman…a seasoned elder in our church to lay hands and pray for me. I came up with every excuse imaginable. I was embarrassed to ask. I was afraid of how I would sound. What do I say? Then I said, “Okay, next Sunday…I’ll ask next Sunday.”
God knew, but I didn’t know that would be the last time I saw Him. You really never know when an opportunity will expire…when your season with a person will end.
I’ve repented. But that doesn’t change the fact that I’ll never know what he would have imparted. I’ll never know what God’s intentions were. I’ll never know how my obedience would have affected my life. My flesh would love to believe I didn’t miss out…that it’s all good…that somehow, some way, SOMETHING has made up for it. But I know God and I know He ALWAYS instructs with purpose.
Years later, I stopped by my parents’ house and my father surprised me and wrote a check. I looked at the amount and said, “Thank you Daddy!” I was in a rush!!! I got to the door and had a fleeting thought to run back and kiss him and tell him I loved him. I didn’t. I was running late. I told myself I’d just come back in a few days. It was the last time I saw him. He passed two days later.
My lesson…there ARE missed opportunities!!!
Sometimes people know what they can’t tell you. Some time later I told my mom I wished I had turned around and run back. What harm would 90 more seconds have done? She told me she asked him what prompted him to write me that check that day. His response, “It’s the last gift I’ll ever be able to give her.”
Friendships expire. Seasons change. Doors close. People die. Folks move away. Life carries people in different directions. Winds of change are often unexpected…. The BEST we can do is maximize moments, make sure people know we love them and that they’re appreciated. Leave a good mark, something that makes people smile when they think of you or remember you.
And WHATEVER He is telling you to do. DO IT!!! Sometimes we’ve only got ONE SHOT to get it right and divinely timed for purpose. Mediocrity and settling present opportunities all day, everyday, as long as you’ll take them.

A Sowing Assignment…

I remember someone who broke my heart told me later that he was engaged. He said after seeing the pain on my face when he hurt me, he committed to never hurt a woman like that again. For a long time, I wondered why I had to be the “sacrifice”. With time, I realized he wasn’t for me. And if our interaction and my pain helped him become a better person, and contributed to a woman being treated well, then it wasn‘t in vain.
I had a crush on someone once and the Lord told me he didn’t belong to me.
I put my feelings aside, and helped him see the light in someone else. They’re very happily married now.
I had an ex (we were able to salvage our friendship) call and ask me to go ring shopping with him, because he wanted to propose to his girlfriend and trusted my taste. I did. And I picked out a ring I would have liked for myself.
I could go on, but sometimes you just have to plant seeds and expect God to water your garden. He doesn’t forget any of our labor. He bottles every tear. He sees every desire.
The ONE who is for you won’t walk away and will not risk losing you. He’ll see his future in you, and hopefully some people will have poured into him, preparing him for just you!!!

Jesus IS the middle….

The truth for a Christian, whether you’re ready or not, whether you like it or not, is that Jesus IS the ministry of reconciliation. He is SUPPOSED to be the CENTER of EVERY relationship you have, whether it’s marital, friendship, parental, sibling or otherwise. He will allow EVERY relationship you have to suffer and fall apart, just so that He can reconcile it and be the center of it. No, not to be mean, but because only through Him….only by Him being at the CENTER of the relationship, can you experience the FULLNESS of the blessing the relationship is intended to be. He HAS to be the center!!! I’ve been ruminating this revelation for about three months.
Here’s an example:
Isaac was a promise for Abraham. Sometimes we desire a promise so much and wait so long that when it manifests, we idolize the promise. We serve it and have a greater affection for it than we do God. Sound familiar? God desired to be the CENTER of Abraham and Isaac’s relationship. He has to be the middle, the reconciler. And when Abraham lifted the knife, he proved his faithfulness to God. He chose God over his son, therefore God gave his son back to him (provided a ram in the bush). At that point God became the mediator, the CENTER of the relationship, His rightful place. With order established, every future blessing God intended for Abraham to have through Isaac, could be given. He HAS to be the CENTER!!! Make Him the center so that He doesn’t have to SHOW you He’s the one keeping it together!!! (One of the many things I’ve learned from Bonhoeffer ❤️)

Accountability is Freedom…

God taught me a lesson a LOOOOOONG time ago that I’ve never forgotten. I, Kelsi, I (emphasis on me) injured a sister at my church and in her pain, she basically yelled it from the mountaintops. Some of what she told people was the truth and some of what she told people were lies. C’mon she isn’t the only one to ever embellish a little due to the sting of pain. In my pride, I was appalled. I began to tell others….”How dare she go around telling people these things!!! She is ruining my reputation! It is so mean for her to tell others what is between she and I- and now she’s started lying!!!”
One day in prayer, the Holy Ghost impressed upon me to STOP and He showed me my fault- my fault alone. At that moment, I realized that the genesis of ALL of it was my transgression against her. I basically overlooked what I had done, to be angry about how she “mishandled” it. With my own sin illuminated before me, I sincerely repented and didn’t look towards her faults anymore. And guess what? In return, for my [now] clean hands, the parts that she shared that were lies, were eventually exposed (yes, it took YEARS). GOD HATES SIN no matter who the culprit is.
You cannot step over your mess in hot pursuit of pointing out someone else’s (Matthew 7:5). You cannot set your own faults aside to deal with how someone else is handling your faults. Your pursuit should be to live above reproach and a life worthy of your calling. With clean hands though, you can plead mercy, especially if others can be hurt. Yes, all of us have been lied on, and someone bearing false witness is a different topic. Here I am referring to when you KNOW you have done wrong, but choose not to take responsibility, all the while, playing victim, angry and upset that someone shared it.
The next time someone gossips about you, before becoming indignant, repent for whatever TRUTH there is in what they are saying, next become resolved that you will not give the enemy anything else to work with, and finally, ask that the truth of the matter be exposed and any lies dispelled. I learned this SOOOO early in my walk with Christ. And I will teach here that you CANNOT be a mature christian without understanding this fundamental element of integrity.
Sometimes if you don’t start none, there won’t be none….. (improper use of english language noted).

It’s OVER!!!

So, there’s been road work by my home for the past 22 months. The detours have caused delays and visitors to the area to become lost. Businesses have complained about the losses in profits – it has just been a mess! The kind of mess that had me checking the city’s website for a completion date and always noticing it needed to be updated more often. THIS WAS ONLY SUPPOSED TO TAKE A YEAR!!! 

When you want to go west, a windy road will lead to the freeway eventually. If you want to go east, EXPECT DELAYS!!! There will be a train crossing your path, but only when you’re in a rush. 😊😉

Well eventually, as you can imagine, I no longer needed to follow the detour signs. I had the detours down pat. I stopped looking to see if any progress was being made, I just followed the detours as the blocked road and extra time driving became what I was used to. 

Then it happened….A few days ago, I noticed a car in front of me go straight as I made my right to follow the detour. Don’t they see the sign! They’ll have to turn back! Don’t they see all of us turning right, taking the detour!!!??

Wait a minute, the car disappeared! Wait! Hold on! ….

I made a u-turn in the middle of the street (sorry) to see where this lone car wandered to and… ALAS! I drove straight through!!! We have access again!!!

Wait, how long have I had access? How long have I been following the detours, because I didn’t LOOK to notice there were no more signs up?

How often do we become so used to delays, messes and dysfunction that we no longer look for the completion date, the END that was promised? 

I knew this situation was prophetic and I immediately repented and prayed. I repented, because somewhere along the line, I stopped expecting the road to be complete. Somewhere along the line, I became tired of being disappointed every time I looked for a “through street” and I just stopped checking! I had been taking detours longer than I had to!!! 

I asked the Father to OPEN MY EYES and reveal every place in my life where I have stopped expecting, become stagnate and accepted delays and detours as though they belong in my life, and thus extended and strengthened their presence. Some stuff is no longer blocked!!! I wanted to share this experience and prayer so that you too will look for the changes you stopped expecting to see. There are some areas where you are no longer hindered. You have FULL ACCESS!!! Drive right on through- LET’S GOOOO!!!!! 

IT’S OPEN & OVER!!!

To The Open Heart on Valentine’s Day….

To the Open Heart This Valentine’s Day….
I was talking to one of my brothers in the Lord last night and he was sharing with me a recent revelation God gave to him about true Godly manhood and the masculinity revealed through responsibility. Divine masculinity that isn’t being taught and is missing in too many adult males around us. He shared that a man’s responsibility, even as a husband, isn’t contingent upon “feelings”. If Jesus was led and motivated by His “feelings”, He would never have drank from the cup. Conviction had to trump convenience and feelings. I appreciate these conversations we have because it becomes so OBVIOUS that the word of God is the skeletal framework of these revelations. I won’t share any more about his revelation about masculinity, as it is His to share. My spirit leaped because I understood, and in that realized that I was being understood.
You see, I made this vow to God a long time ago that I would give Him my life and really LIVE ON PURPOSE and by His design. It was then that I knew with certainty that I wouldn’t exist to pay bills and die. I decided that I would agree with God concerning His will for my life and do my best to partner with His plans and bring glory to His name.
If I am to partner with His plans, then I cannot partner with those who don’t partner with His plans- even if it means walking alone at times. If God’s plan looks like “this”, then I can’t marry someone whose life plan and pursuit looks like “that”.
We don’t choose one time to live for God, we choose to live for God CONTINUOUSLY, one opportunity at a time, overcoming by His strength, one temptation at a time, siding with Him, once choice at a time. Victory doesn’t mean there are no injuries, but it does mean you are at least TRYING to aim right and that there are more hits than misses. There should ALWAYS be measurable growth.
So tonight, I am saluting those who make the inconvenient, unpopular and often misunderstood decisions, in an effort to remain in the will of God. I salute you because it is a lonely place. There are those who have walked with you that will fall asleep on you (won’t you pray with me for one hour?). There are those who will tell you that it doesn’t take all of that. There are those who will tell you that since you only live once, you might as well do all that makes you feel good, DESPITE biblical principles such as those shared in Romans 8:1-5.
So to those who could have continued to stay on a job that allowed them to be rich, but chose to start all over, even if it meant less pay, to do things God’s way, and WAIT for the fruit of that decision, I salute you and can relate. Napolean Kaufman still had good playing years left in him in the NFL when he left to pastor (just in case you needed an example).
To those who desire to be married, but have had to forego opportunities to do so, because they haven’t YET met one that God said He endorses and fits well into His plan for their lives… I salute you and can relate.
For those who have had to endure public scrutiny whether at a dinner table or a board meeting, because they have defended the truth while everyone else was in agreement and slapping fives over a lie, gossip or demonic agenda… I salute you and can relate.
For those courageous enough to walk away from their desires, to pursue God’s desires for them…. I salute you and can relate.
Jesus set the example of sacrificial love and commitment for the sake of doing the will of the Father and THE WAY hasn’t changed. Nobody said it would be easy, but in the END, it will be worth it.
There are so many decades we’ll spend here. And there is an ETERNITY we will spend… somewhere else. Are you willing to sacrifice here to reign with Him there? You aren’t alone.
HAPPY VALENTINES DAY…..where is your heart…..really?

Shifting Your WAIT…

If you’ve worn high heels, you’ve done it. You know how it is once your shoes have hit the expiration hour. After standing in the bliss of praise and worship your soul awakens to the reality that your soles hurt and that what could have been a full day in those beautiful shoes is cut down to another hour or two at best! And what about when you have to wait in line while your feet hurt? Oh, you really play the shifting game then. The balls of your feet begin to sting.  And here you go…..left, right (ouch, no that hurts!), left, left, left, right, left. Okay, now a little time on the back of the heels, and then back to left, right, left…. While you converse or wait, you continue to shift your weight wondering if anyone notices. One thing about having had your feet hurt, you can identify someone else whose feet hurt. You look and nod in sympathy— yeah, you know the walk, you know the stance, and you know the “shift”.  We have become masters of shifting our weight when standing still hurts too badly.

Some of us need to apply the same principle to our faith and learn to shift our wait. How we wait… where we wait, begins to apply pressure to our “emotional space”- the same way our weight applies pressure to our feet when it’s hurting us to stand still. Some thoughts become strained, some hopes become worn; the same way gravity pushes our toes to the front of our shoes causing discomfort, there are times when our souls have a propensity to go forward; there’s an ache for a movement of some sort, even if just to get out of the painful space; yet it isn’t time to move, so we stand still and wait. Our concerns apply the same pressure to the “hopeful place” in our hearts. You feel pressure, stinging, aching pain and once it’s REALLY bad, you begin to lose some sensation.

Have you ever gotten to a point where you felt it may be easier to just not expect the change, to just not be excited, to just not believe at all? At last, it ‘s time to shift your WAIT. Don’t carry the weight of the wait. Cast it into the Father’s care. Hand it over to Him and each time you take it back, give it to Him again. You can’t do much with anything that is out of your control. Whatever your change is, it will happen SUDDENLY. One day you will wake up and it will be the day you won’t have to wait any longer!!! One day the wait will be over.

Wait on the Lord; be of good courage, and he shall strengthen thine heart; wait, I say, on the Lord. Psalm 27:14

Wait on the lord, and keep his way, and he shall exalt thee to inherit the land: when the wicked are cut off, thou shall see it.

Psalm 37:34

I waited patiently on the Lord; and he inclined unto me, and heard my cry.

Psalm 40:1

Thee wait all upon thee; that thou mayest give them their meat in due season.

Psalm 104:27

Say not thou, I will recompense evil; but wait on the lord, and he shall save thee. Proverbs 20:22

In your patience possess ye your souls. Luke 21:19

Take, my brethren, the prophets, who have spoken in the name of the Lord, for an example of suffering affliction, and of patience. James 5:10

And to knowledge temperance; and to temperance patience; and to patience godliness. 2 Peter 1:6

The Lord is not slack concerning his promise, as some men count slackness, but is longsuffering to us-ward, not willing that any should perish, but that all should come to repentance. 2 Peter 3:9

Knowing this, that the trying of your faith worketh patience. But let patience have her perfect work, that ye may be perfect and entire, wanting nothing. James 1:3-4