You won’t catch us with a dirty living room carpet!

I say that with great pride.

Only because it’s a recent accomplishment tho, and the credit goes to the 3 year old in the house.

The floor in our house gets swept daily, but I couldn’t usually say the same about my living room carpet.

Mostly, because it’s a big hassle to drag out the vacuum, plug it in and then do all that in reverse after vacuuming for only about 30 seconds.

So, you know, I convinced myself that it’s only slightly dirty, or I used the ‘well it’s already Wednesday and I’ll be cleaning on Friday’ line, or the ‘I just cleaned this thing yesterday! Or maybe it was yesterday’s yesterday, maybe even yesterday’s yesterday’s yesterday🤔 either way it feels like I just did it!’

My point being: the carpet was more often then not dirtier then I wanted it to be.

Then one time… Kyna asked if he could vacuum.

That was a no brainer. “Of course you can!” I said, while thinking that even if he only gets half of it clean it will look much better then it did.

It turns out, however, that he is really good at vacuuming carpets. The thing was spotless!

Awesome, I’ll get him to vacuum it sometimes. Good plan, Grace. Why didn’t I think of that?

My enthusiasm was short lived however, when he started asking if he could vacuum it multiple times a day.🤦‍♀️

He would finish it, then ask if he could do it again 20 min later.

This lasted about a week before I concluded that if I wanted my sanity to survive this excessive vacuuming dilemma, I needed a solution.

So I told him that every day when we get back from dropping Kenz off at school, he could vacuum the carpet, but that was the only time he was allowed to do it. Only once a day.

The next day we get home and I hear the vacuum start. My first thought? “Why are they playing with the vacuum?!”

Thankfully, I remembered the rules that I had set in place before I spoke.

Every day since then (over a week now) he has dedicatedly vacuumed the carpet, and he doesn’t ask to do it outside of that.👏

It’s amazing.

My always dirty carpet is now my always clean carpet.

It’s not all smooth sailing though.

He is very interested in testing just how capable this vacuum is by seeing how big pieces it can pick up.

”I got a really big price that time!” He says.

I warned him that the vacuum can break if he drives over something that’s too big to fit.

“I’m being very careful!” He says.

I’m over here hoping that he doesn’t try to pick up something that will get stuck and wreak havoc on my vacuum, but in the meantime I’m really enjoying the clean carpet!🙂

Spiritual Warfare: Are You Equipped For The Battle?

The battles in the spiritual realm are no joke.

They are real and they are more powerful then us mere humans.

I don’t understand it all. Not even close actually, but I know that every time I find spiritual breakthrough it’s immediately followed by enemy attacks. And the bigger the breakthrough, the bigger the attack.

Here’s my stories:

• I met Jesus. The real Jesus, not the legalistic one I’d been taught about.

Then, the two most important people in my life told me my salvation wasn’t real because if it was I wouldn’t be doing ‘this or that.’ (Church rules, basically)

I wavered. My faith was young.

• We sank our life savings into D.T.S. because we wanted to learn the truth of who God is. (The truth. Not the Amish or ex Amish version of him.)

We came home broke and everything that could possibly break down did exactly that. We dumped hundreds into our vehicle and house that summer. And we were broke, remember?

The doubts set in. God, himself sent us to DTS. Why wasn’t he helping us out now?

We wavered. Our faith was still young?

• I got set free from the spirit of rejection and anxiety.

Soon after, I had this incredible urge to rid my life of anything that made me feel even remotely guilty while simultaneously drenching myself with the word of God.

It was the Holy Spirit, I knew. So, I did it. I took it so far as getting rid of social media. I listened to the Bible on audio for hours each day.

The battle that followed my newfound freedom was unlike anything I ever experienced and I hope to never repeat it.

The devil doesn’t play fair and he knows your weaknesses.

He attacked our church. This came in the form of people speaking against our church while a situation going on inside the church made me question everything our church stood for. (My faith in our church and what we stand for has been restored. Strengthened even.)

He attacked our business. A drop in sales, to a credit card machine malfunction that caused us to lose a couple hundred in one day, to someone literally spreading lies about us to our employees made me wonder what on earth was going on?! (All relationships and finances are still intact.)🙂

He attacked our school. When too many kids for 1 class, but not enough for 2 classes enrolled for 1st grade they called 6 families and said our kids won’t be able too come back. Yup, we were one of those families. But it was the malicious words and gossip that got to me and made us want to pack up and move clear across the country. (In the end a solution was found and we were able to send Kenzie back to the same school.)

He attacked my family. It’s personal, but trust me, it was ugly.

I didn’t just waver. I crashed. Hard. I doubted everything I ever stood for. I doubted my faith. My relationship with God. With the things that were said to me, I doubted that I was even a half decent human being. I doubted, y’all. I literally doubted everything.

The only thing I had, that proved to myself that I wasn’t the self absorbed idiot that I had been accused of being was the fact that when God asked me to practice holiness on a higher level then ever before, I had done it. I’m not perfect. I’m not without sin. But in that moment… there was nothing in my life that I thought I maybe shouldn’t be doing… Not even ‘too much social media.’  And that is what I kept going back to every time I battled through the mind games of ‘do I even know God?’

I didn’t just waver. I crashed. I was angry at God. He used that time to point out areas in my life that needed improvement, which is fine really. I don’t mind growing and learning. But why on earth did he have to deliver it in such an ugly, downgrading package?!

I didn’t just waver. I crashed. Was my faith still young?

It’s not. My faith is anything but young. I can give you countless testimonies of how God came through for me since I met him on the Mississippi shores. My faith has maturity. It has weathered enough storms to know who God is.

Then why did I crash?

Because I underestimated the power of the power of the devil.

I now understand that when breaking free from the things holding me back, when learning new things about God, I need to be fully equipped for battle.

I need to fast.

I need to worship.

I need to be fully immersed in the word of God.

And most important of all:

I need to have a daily, deep connection with God.

I already did all that but my biggest revelation after the whole ugly ordeal was that if I want to survive the storms, my pursuit of a relationship with God must be bigger then my pursuit of the things of God.

Both are important, but the things of God are only doable if my relationship with God is fully and firmly established.

I’m currently still over here licking my wounds but what the devil hasn’t yet realized is that I’m also plotting my revenge. I will get back up again and when I do I will be stronger then ever because I have a whole boatload of knowledge that I didn’t have a year ago.

I don’t understand it, but I know that fasting is a tool that the devil is powerless against.

And I know that the closer I walk with God, the less power the devil holds over me.