I haven't always been the best person and I am certain I am not the best now, but praise to God I am not the Carmen I once use to be.
I didn't always know how to love (still working on that area) and I definitely didn't know how to forgive or let go.Throughout my college years I unknowingly walked around with a bitter heart. I would do things and not even recognize that it was because of hurt, anger and flat out bitterness. Like many girls I had loved without FIRST consulting Christ and it ended in heart break and a lot of anger towards people who were not at all to blame. I, Carmen, had allowed satan to creep up in my life and taint one of the greatest things ever given to me -- MY NAME.
I don't credit satan at all, because unfortunately for his sake he was not at all succesful in his attempt and now I am a force to be reckoned with -- ready for war, because now more than ever I know that Christ named me. My past does not determine me, but they give layers to my testimony. A true testament to Christ and his miraclous healing power. By his stripes I am healed and by his mercy I am forgiven.
I know my name!
Do you know your name?
You are a masterpiece. God's Creation.
"So God created mankind in his own image, in the image of God he created them; male and female he created them." Genesis 1:27 (Application Study Bible)"For we are God's handiwork, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do." Ephesians 2:10 (Application Study Bible)
Now that I know Christ saved me (I saved You) and named me, I boast with great joy when I read scriptures like the ones above. I am God's handiwork, meaning I was created by His own hands. I am God's masterpiece, His workmanship, a work of art, and let me not fail to mention I was created in His image. For this very reason I can feel positive about who I am in Christ.
When you know your name you want to do all you can to live a life that is pleasing to God. Earlier this summer, while I was studying Proverbs I came across a scripture that totally convicted me. "Wine and beer make people lose control; they get loud stumble and fall. And that is foolish." Prov. 20:1 (ERV) I remember sitting in room thinking this is it, I will not drink ever again, and I told God that I didn't want to do anything to taint my name. Of course, we as humans, try to reason with ourselves, and give excuses as to why we can have just one drink, or that Jesus turned water to wine. Well for me, I determined that none of that mattered, what mattered was my name, and I no longer wanted to taint my name, and be led astray. God is faithful, and now I just no longer have a taste for alcohol, period. I choose Christ, even if that means going against the grain. I have a name to uphold.
I don't want anyone to think I am judging them, because more than anything I seek to be transparent with all who read my post, and show them that God can free us from things that draw us away from Him. I want to show you that you are precious in God's sight and you have a name to uphold. You have an image to protect, and if we desire to be a positive influence it begins with our own life. As a follower of Christ Your life is your greatest ministry. People may not immediately be receptive of what you "preach" but they will be moved by your life.
Don't Give Up On Your Name
I say this because I know the plans that I have for you." This message is from the Lord. "I have good plans for you. I don't plan to hurt you. I plan to give you hope and a good future." Jeremiah 29:11
Don't lose hope. Don't give up on your name. You haven't received the call you've been praying for. You haven't seen your name in the credit. Your name hasn't been written on the contract. It's okay! Don't give up on God. He saved you for this moment. He named you. I have been guilty of rushing my seasons, just ready to fulfill God's promises, and live out my name. Yet, we have to appreciate every season. God is working things out for you. He's given you so many promises in His word, cling to those promises.
"For no matter how many promises God has made, they are "Yes" in Christ.
And so through Him the "Amen" is spoken by us to the glory of God."
2 Corinthians 1:20 (NIV)
Peace, Love, and Christ
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As always we are on this journey together. :)