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Contributing Writers Archives - Trayer Wilderness
No-Bake Double Chocolate Oatmeal Cookies

No-Bake Double Chocolate Oatmeal Cookies

Ok, I confess… It is nice to have a healthy sweet treat… There I said it!

I am on a no sugar diet, but every once in a great while I cheat…

The Importance Of Healthy Raw Ingredients

For most of you, you know that I utilize only organic, non-GMO raw ingredients in our mostly from-scratch diet and I have even taken that a step further when it comes to watching my sugar consumption. There are other great healthy and tasty alternatives to organic cane sugar. I utilize organic coconut sugar a lot in our kitchen and truly you do not forfeit the taste!

If you are making a healthy anything in your kitchen, the only way it is truly healthy is if the ingredients you are putting into it are the healthiest they can be! 

As you may also know, I go after the heart of my Men by means of their belly!

Yesterday, I decided along with our New Year’s meal that a sweet treat was in order and I decided something quick and simple was our favorite no bake recipe.

No Bake Double Chocolate Oatmeal Cookies Recipe

1 stick of butter (non-dairy Earth Balance)                      1 cup organic coconut sugar
3 tbsp cocoa                                                                    1 cup organic chocolate non-dairy chips
1/2 cup evaporated milk (organic cashew milk)

Mix together and bring to a boil. Boil 1 minute or until all ingredients are melted together.

Note: I put the cashew milk in the pan first to boil a bit to get extra water out to create my own evaporated milk and then I add the other ingredients.

Then add 1/2 cup Earth Balance peanut butter, 3 cups organic gluten-free quick oats and 1 tsp vanilla.

Drop by tsp or tbsp on non-bleached parchment paper and then refrigerate.

These are a quick, simple and healthy snack for the whole family!

What are your favorite quick and easy desserts?

New Beginnings

New Beginnings

2019 is here!

2018 went SO very fast, it is hard to believe another year is passed! We are thankful for the new year though for a New Beginning!

New Beginnings is our theme for the new year. We embraced 2018 focusing on Living With Intention. Living by our terms and remembering much clearer why we embarked on this off-grid journey in the first place.

Our year was a rough year for our family as it may have been for you and yours too. It is easy to get tired, weary and even lose faith while you go through rough times, but I hope as we walked this year together that you gained hope, perseverance and were encouraged when we wouldn’t give up and kept our focus on the Lord! You know each day is a gift, right?!
We are gifted daily with a New Beginning and we need to remember that when we do get knocked down that we just need to get up, brush ourselves off, keep moving forward and always looking up!

Despite going through a rough spot, having a heart and mind focused on gratitude can make the world of difference. When you keep your eyes focused on the daily blessings and keep your thoughts, minds and self-talk monitored so that a negative can quickly be corrected and replaced with something positive your world and life will change! Initially, it may not be easy, but as time goes on I think you will see how easy it really is! This is the perfect time of year to look back over a gratitude journal to remember all the amazing things that happened throughout the year! If you don’t currently use a gratitude journal I would like to encourage you to start for 2019 because it will be an aid for your New Beginning!

Here are my means of setting goals:

  1. Think longterm. Visualize what your life looks like one year, 5 years and 10 years from now.
  2. Break your long-term goals into short-term goals and set a timeline to achieve them.
  3. Take small, doable actions toward achieving them every day.
  4. Re-evaluate often. Don’t be afraid to change course, make new goals or even scrap old goals if they no longer fit your longterm vision for your future. If things aren’t working it is perfectly ok to change the angle of attack.
  5. Keep moving forward no matter what. Don’t look at the entire staircase and certainly, DON’T look back. Just look forward at the next step, and take it.
  6. If you fall down or face setbacks, get back up and start again from wherever you are. As long as you keep moving forward in the direction of your goals so much as you can, you WILL eventually hit your mark. Be persistent & resilient. Remember the sky is the limit and planning + action equals anything you set your mind to!
  7. Having an accountability partner or app is a great tool and way to keep us on course.

Every day is a gift and a new chance to start over and get it right, but a new year offers new hope in ways that other days of the year just can’t. Remember, every year will bring ups and downs so rather than focusing on a new year turn your focus to each day. How is that for breaking it down – clearer picture – baby steps – one day at a time.

My wish for you this year is that you dream big. Set big, scary goals for yourself. Have a vision. Talk nice to yourself, encourage yourself and show yourself grace.  Make a plan. Take small actions every day toward achieving them and don’t let anything or anyone hold you back from seeing them through.

God bless! Tam ♥ †

Are you in?  Are you joining me?

How I Treated Anaphylaxis Without The ER

How I Treated Anaphylaxis Without The ER

 

PLEASE Note: The protocol below is what has worked for me. I recommend that if you have similar symptoms as I mention below that you seek medical attention, but I am sharing the below in the event that you are experiencing the same and there is no medical facilities available to you. I am not a medical doctor and I am merely sharing my experience. I do expect you to do your due diligence and seek medical attention for yourself or your loved ones!

I have been on a natural medicine journey since I was fourteen and I have learned so much over the years,but I have learned so much about the body and healing specifically over the last three years on my healing journey. For those of you that are new to following us, I had life-saving surgery in 2016 and since have become a huge advocate to help save the lives of others. You can read that story here.

Through this process of healing from biotoxins, heavy metals and silicone I have learned a lot and experienced a lot. As a result of my illness, my immune system is impaired and things that never would have bothered me before have become life-threatening to me now. While I walk this journey, I have been sharing this process and what I have learned in an effort to help others with the same illness as well as others that may experience the same thing as a result of other immune system impairing illnesses.

Eye Drops That Nearly Killed Me

As I write this it is Sunday, December 9th, two days prior on Friday our family visited the eye doctor just for a yearly checkup that was WAY overdue and to get the obviously new prescription that was needed – especially for me as I have been unintentionally lengthening my families arms so that I can see! 🙂

They administered the eye drops, first the numbing eye drop. When I started to dab the drops with a tissue and realized they were fluorescent yellow something deep within me twitched. These were to aid the doctor in checking my eyes under the blue light as well as numb the eye so they could administer the second drops to dilate my pupil. . We went about our appointment getting all our eyes checked, glasses picked and then went about our day.

On the way home I experienced quite the headache and suspected it was a result of my pupils being dilated and it was a bright day so I didn’t think much of it. Got home, enjoyed dinner and then I sat and watched a movie with the Mountain Man Jr. As I was watching the movie, I realized that my hands were getting really dry and sore and that my body was beginning to hurt all over as though I might be coming down with something. Being we were at the clinic where there were sick people it was very likely I was coming down with something. I treated myself with essential oils and natural cold remedies as a preventative measure and went to bed.

When I woke on Saturday I realized right away that I was lucky to have woken at all. I woke with a very strong tin taste in my mouth indicating heavy metals and my face and hands were EXTREMELY swollen. Had my hands been any more swollen I would have needed to cut my ring off my hand. That ring normally nearly falls off my hand so I had swelled greatly. I instantly realized that it was not the onset of a cold, but a reaction to the toxins that were in the eye drops.

Now I would like to point out here that in my younger days when the Mountain Boy Jr. was only a couple of days old I had a routine allergy shot that went south. I am guessing because my body was recently stressed with his birth that I had a negative reaction to my weekly allergy shot that I never had a problem with prior, but as a result of that shot I needed an adrenaline shot so I truly KNOW the severity of such a situation, but over the last three years I have also experienced the same situation MANY times and I was able to naturally work through it.  Not to mention, I have NO idea how my body will react to anything else that might be administered at the ER including an adrenaline shot!  So, I’d like to make it VERY clear that if YOU are experiencing such symptoms, if medical assistance is available, PLEASE do NOT mess around!

What Worked For Me

OK back to this situation, I started treating myself to try to remove the inflammation and fluid by drinking dandelion and milk thistle tea. The dandelion is a diuretic and the milk thistle would help my liver to process all the toxins. I also added nettle and red clover. The nettle will help with allergies and excess histamine in my system and the red clover is an aid in cleaning the blood.

Since my surgery, my body reacts to anything foreign in a very drastic way so something as simple as eating a food with a GMO can be deadly so I only eat if I am 100% sure that the food I am eating is safe. It makes eating a bit overrated, but I would much rather be safe than sorry otherwise I can expect at least a minimum of 4 days down on my back as a result. So since we have experienced this before, I also got out my peppermint, lavender and lemongrass essential oils. Those together, rubbed on the chest also help with extreme allergies and can be used in place of an EpiPen, but I recommend you seek medical help if available to you. We do have an EpiPen available as well as Benadryl, but they are only used as a last resort because we have no idea how my body will react to them. The EpiPen specifically.

I personally avoid taking anything man-made because more often than not, my body will react poorly to it. We have opted not to seek medical attention because if a medical doctor is not familiar with my illness (which most are not) they will start pumping medicine into my body via pill or iv and my body could very well react poorly to those as well causing me to be in a worse condition then when I arrived.

After waking on Saturday, I also took:
1. Milk thistle supplements in addition to the tea
2. Nettle & Quercetin supplements for the allergy or histamine reaction
3. Metallo Clear which is a metal detox to help get the metals out of my system (I have a mutated gene that keeps me from breaking down metals)
4. Activated charcoal which will help bind and absorb the toxins that are now in my guts. I prefer to use liquid bentonite clay and psyllium husk daily, but I had run out. The benefit of taking the bentonite clay and psyllium husk daily is because I am regularly detoxing and it binds the toxins and keeps them from reabsorbing into the body. If the body can not rid the toxins fast enough, additional sickness will occur as a result of reabsorption. It is also a safe-guard for times like this that I am accidently administered something that my body will fight which again would have absorbed it and eliminated the extra days of sickness and struggles. The bentonite clay and psyllium husk are great to take for anyone detoxing and those with Lyme disease to absorb and bind the die off.
5. I also drained my face of fluid and drained my lymphatic system.  The drain your lymphatic – I did this video to demonstrate what you need to do first to successfully drain your lymphatic and this is a great video that shows you how to drain your face.

  1. I also used Magnesium Oil on my neck and chest to loosen those muscle that so badly wanted to tighten.

  2. I incorporate regular, bentonite and coffee enemas into my healing routine and this is something that will help rid the body of the excess toxins quicker as well.

I did ok during the day Saturday, but as we went into the evening I started to wheeze, my tongue and chest were getting heavy and I realized I had a build up of histamine in my body. When you lay flat at night it increases the swelling and reaction so I slept propped up. I avoid taking medication at all costs, but because my symptoms were worsening I needed as many antihistamines in my body as possible so I took a Benadryl. I was also drinking olive leaf, nettle and holy basil tea because they are antihistamines and would help in lowering my histamine levels. I readministered the essential oils as well and was still drinking a LOT of tea and taking quercetin and nettle capsules as well which is a natural form of Benadryl. The Mountain Man also gets up in the middle of the night to go to the bathroom so I asked him to wake me so we could check my condition and readminister whatever might be necessary.

I slept till noon on Sunday which does not happen often, but I was very swollen still. So I knew I had to do additional things to get the fluids out of my system. When this has happened in the past it usually takes a minimum of 5 days to get full relief of the symptoms. I also learned in the past that if my body was swollen to this degree trying to take a hot soak to relax my body is not the best choice under these circumstances because the heat increases the swelling and the histamine reaction.

I did two ionic foot baths to help pull the toxins through the feet. I then rode my exercise bike vigorously for 11 miles to work up a good sweat. When I completed that I was able to remove my ring from my finger and had eliminated some fluid. I also drank over 90 oz of fluid throughout the day. Water Water Water….and tea. I did two harmonic quad foot soaks (more on this later) which will help remove the toxins as well from the body and following those soaks I rode the exercise bike again for 14 miles. I was experiencing great relief at this point, but I was still not out of the woods.

I took a hot shower and then ended the shower with a cold shower/soak. This evening I am starting to feel human. Michael on our Facebook page suggested a homeopathic remedy Belladona which was actually a good recommendation. It works very well with asthma symptoms. It is a supplement that I do have on hand also, but have gotten accustomed to what works best for me and have just stuck with that.

We talk and educate ALL the time on the importance of being prepared in every aspect of our lives and this is a perfect example why it is SO important for us with our location to have a fully stocked herbal pantry and also having the knowledge and resources to know what to use for what and to know your body well enough to be able to read it and accommodate it.

Here are a couple of books I feel you should have in your hardcopy library:

  1. Be Your Own Doctor
  2. Natural Remedies Encyclopedia

We are SO careful what we put in and on our bodies and I have to say, I honestly never considered the toxicity of those eye drops. Not everyone’s body is as sensitive as mine, BUT the more you remove toxins from your diet and your homes the more effected by toxins you will become. It is important to remove all this garbage from our systems and it is also important for you to consider the effects of things in the future.

Sunday evening my eyes were just a touch swollen and my hands are almost back to normal. Knowing what to do when things happen is very important. This was a freak incident, but since my surgery freak incidents are common for me so being on alert is important. One of the benefits I have in ensuring my good health is our lifestyle. We know our well water is safe and toxin free, we know where our food comes from, I do not experience the heavy frequency from grid power and my life is what I make it and is influenced by me, not outside things that I cannot control so I am nestled in a safe haven and able to heal myself. There is definitely a time for western medicine, but I choose to practice eastern medicine before turning to something I have lost a LOT of faith in.

Something else I want to mention is that I allow God to guide me. The holy spirit plays a huge role in my ability to self diagnose and the intuneness I experience with my body. It is important that you do not panic in any situation, but stay calm and assess the situation. By choice, I am very open-minded and very intune with the holy spirit which has helped me greatly on my healing journey.

As I stated above, it is important that you seek medical attention for such a situation, but if you are unable to seek medical attention these are some ways that you can aid your body.

Just a little side note.  I am posting this on our website on December 27th which is 20 days after this incident and I am still having struggles with my lymphatic system clogging and having to continue heavy metal detoxing as a result of something as simple as eye drops so PLEASE be an advocate for yourself and your family!   Also be aware how toxic things are in our world and seek healthier options.

Love and prayers,  Tam ♥

#TrayerWilderness #FaithLedPreparedness #EmbraceOffGrid #BreastImplantIllness #BII

7 Most Important Things On Our Homestead

7 Most Important Things On Our Homestead

Welcome to our homestead. Although you visit our homestead virtually, we want you to feel welcomed and a part of the family.

We treasure our visitors and enjoy being led to share our knowledge, inspiration and offer you encouragement on your daily walk.  We enjoy getting to know you and for many of you, your willingness to share too!

So when you visit, no matter if you are listening to a podcast, reading a post or watching a video – our prayer is that your visit here will be memorable, peaceful and that you will walk away with knowledge and encouragement.

“May the Lord bless you and keep you, and make His face shine upon you.” (Numbers 6:24-26)

Our Goal

Our goal here on our off-grid homestead is to walk a walk that causes others to ask where our hope, faith, and perseverance come from! (1 Peter 3:15)

Living With Intention

2018 became a year we began Living With Intention and in doing so we put our focus on what was the MOST important to us.

What Is Most Important To Us

The 7 most important things on our homestead are what help hold us together, strengthen our bond and enable us to walk the walk…

  1. Faith & Trust – Our home is lead by God and our focus is heavily on him for everything we do. We choose to walk in faith and be disciples for him. We are not perfect, but we strive to be the best that we can be.  We have found spending time in the Word daily and building on our Faith and Trust muscles create a stress-free and worry-free life!  I enjoy using Jesus Calling as a go-to devotional and I would be lost without my Inspire Journalling Bible.
  2. Head Of The House – The Mountain Man is the head of our house. He is our prayerful rock. I do submit to him as I am called to do, but as his helpmeet and willingly as his equal. We walk side by side and work together. This is a subject that causes heated discussions at times because of how it is taught, perceived and unfortunately because of misuse. I, as the woman, am supposed to submit to him (which means in many ways not just in the one that is usually the first to come to mind) and that does not mean abused or that somehow I am a lesser person. He as the head of the household is also supposed to treat me like the church. When these dynamics are put together properly and as they are supposed to be, an amazing relationship is formed and is able to grow! We need to nurture our men into good healthy leaders that walk with confidence, strength and a willingness to protect!  Our men are meant to be the leaders of our homes and our protectors.  We also, as a team (husband and wife), need to focus on the health of our marriages being supportive of one another and spending quality time with each other.  Communication is key!  Keeping those homestead fires burning is important!
  3. Family – Our strong family bond is important to us. We have experienced and walked through a lot of adversity and trials, but through those experiences, our bond has gotten so strong that together we are unstoppable and unbreakable!  It is important to build each other up and to help our youth to be strong, independent, faith-led individuals that know how to manage money, and have the skillsets to take care of themselves.  Our son is high functioning autistic with Asperger tendencies and he is no exception – our lifestyle has afforded him some great opportunities and we have taught him that the Sky Is The Limit.  Austin has overcome 98% of his autism and Asperger tendencies as a result of God’s grace, our persistence and devotion to seeking answers, natural remedies, and our lifestyle.
  4. Living Debt Free – As many of you know, the last three years have been extremely hard for us financially as a result of my life-saving surgery in 2016 and the healing protocol that I have been on since.  We have been fighting against filing bankruptcy all year and are prayerful that we will get out of this mess and be debt-free within the year without having to file.  Having goals and plans regarding your future and finances is important and so is doing your due diligence in keeping a working budget and being 100% devoted to not giving up.  We use EveryDollar and YNAB as our budgeting solutions and also LOVE following and learning from Dave Ramsey.  Prior to my surgery, we were heavily focusing on a debt-free life, but life through us some lemons and we now need to make some lemonade – in other words, we are NOT giving up, we are making the best of our situation and trusting God for an amazing outcome!  One of the reasons I feel that a lot of people fail at budgeting is because they have Tithing and Saving on their budget, BUT those two things, out of fear, continue to get pushed to the bottom of the budget.  Without tithing we are not honoring God the way we are supposed to – he should ALWAYS be paid FIRST and TRUST ME, he will provide!! Without saving, we don’t have anything to fall back on in emergencies and emergencies WILL happen.  So how do you get past this hang up you ask?  Great question – you start strengthening your FAITH and TRUST muscles and just DO IT!!
  5. Health & Our Food/Bounty – We choose to take good care of ourselves. Our body is a temple and we choose to treat it as such. We get enough sleep, drink plenty of water, exercise and are very conscious of not only what we put in our body, but also what we put on our body. Taking care of ourselves is an important aspect of being able to accomplish the things necessary on our homestead – when we are running like a well-oiled machine we are able to accomplish a lot!  We choose very carefully what we put in our bodies.  Today’s food is poison and it is important for us to do our due diligence and either seek out or grow the best possible food we can put in our bodies.  This goes hand in hand with our health.  Many of the sicknesses, illnesses, and diseases today are a result of our poor quality food.  I have learned first hand how drastically GMO’s can harm the body and result in illness as well as how sensitive our bodies become once we have removed all the garbage.  We grow, forage, hunt and harvest from the wild as much as we can and we purchase all non-GMO, organic raw ingredients for our from-scratch diet.
  6. Serving Others – We are all called to serve and love others.  When we take our focus off of ourselves and turn it toward others there is great growth and joy found in this!  It is also a matter of the heart when you take time to help and assist others.  We enjoy and feel led to be a light to others in whatever way we can!
  7. Enjoying The Journey – In society today, we could very easily be led to believe that it is meant to be all work and no play, but in order to be the best we can be – we need to take time away to enjoy life. To take this a step further, it wouldn’t even be that we need to step away to enjoy life – what really needs to happen is that we need to slow the pace and Live With Intention. Live life by our terms – not by societies terms. We don’t have to be running at the speed of light and keeping up with the Jones’s – we need to learn to focus on what is most important to us!  We must make our most important things in our life non-negotiables on our schedule and we need to guard and protect them. By doing so, you are more likely to enjoy the journey because you are focusing on the things that give you the most joy.

Once our attention is brought to the most important things in our lives and we start to focus on those things, life becomes much sweeter, richer, fuller, and SO rewarding!

So I ask you today, what are the things that are most important to you?

What Does It Really Mean To Live Off-Grid

What Does It Really Mean To Live Off-Grid

There is a lot of confusion as to what it really means to live Off The Grid. So many people I spoke to in the beginning of our journey would apologize to me when I said that I lived off-grid.

Honestly, that really surprised me and it took me a little to figure out how they were thinking. In their eyes, I was living a lesser life with NO power or modern conveniences. I believe many think that if you live off grid, you live in a shack, are dirty and unable to take regular baths and are deprived in some way, but they could not have been more wrong.

Living off the grid means that you are choosing to severe your connection and ties to the modern grid and either live with no power at all or power your home with either batteries, a generator or a form of alternative energy. It could also be a combination of the above.  It also means in ways seeking a freedom from today’s modern society and being able to create your own lifestyle of sorts.  It also means a much lesser dependency on society and government as a result of or that may actually be the initial intention, but either way I believe it slowly occurs regardless!

We aspire to eventually live a life with no power, but for right now we are utilizing a 48-volt solar system with 16 panels and 16 batteries along with a generator backup.

We embarked on this journey in 2010 and to date, we have NEVER been without power. The local power grid has been down so much over those years that we lost count and often times didn’t even know the rest of the world was without. One time we had a breaker blow on the system which kept us from pulling power from the sun, but our batteries were full and our generator kept us powered up while we waited three days for our new breakerS to arrive.

On our off-grid homestead, we make it a practice to have 3 backups of our most important necessities and that breaker has been added to our list.

Living an off-grid lifestyle is something I could never turn my back on. I passionately love living this life of freedom not to mention the health benefits of not having power lines even remotely near our home.

Our lifestyle creates a simplistic mindset that just keeps digging its roots deeper and deeper into our souls.

We really haven’t had to give up anything that was of any value to us and living in a conservative fashion helps keep us from feeling like the rest of the world that is trying desperately to keep up with the Joneses only to continue going deeper and deeper into debt and unhappiness.

Joy is found in the still quiet moments, in contentment and joy produces happiness. I have found my joy in this lifestyle and will never turn back.

For more on our lifestyle and an in-depth at off-grid living, check out my book How To Embrace An Off-Grid Lifestyle.

Faith Through The Storm

Faith Through The Storm

What does that look like exactly and really how is that possible?

I will say, it does take practice to have complete and total faith through the storm. It is a process I believe that we mature and grow into – if we allow ourselves to be CHANGED!

I have been through a LOT of challenging things in my life and today, I look forward to the next challenge. Not that I look for the uncomfortable places in life, but because I know that through the uncomfortable circumstances that we travel, amazing things happen and amazing growth is experienced! I would not be the warrior I am today if I did not believe that!

I too used to say “WHY ME LORD, WHY ME?”, but today I say “SHOW ME LORD, GROW ME LORD!”

The saying ”God will not give us more than we can handle” is actually not in the bible directly, but I have been guilty of hanging on to those words and thinking to myself, “WOW, God sure must think I can handle a LOT”. Those words have helped me more than a time or two to grab those boot straps and put on my big girl panties!! But the truth is God loves us and will protect us.

“Dear friends, don’t be surprised at the fiery trials you are going through, as if something strange were happening to you.” ‭‭1 Peter‬ ‭4:12‬ ‭NLT‬‬

Peter shares with us above that as Christians we should not be surprised when fiery trials come our way, but I love best how James puts it…

“Dear brothers and sisters, when troubles of any kind come your way, consider it an opportunity for great joy. For you know that when your faith is tested, your endurance has a chance to grow. So let it grow, for when your endurance is fully developed, you will be perfect and complete, needing nothing.” ‭‭James‬ ‭1:2–4‬ ‭NLT

I don’t know about you, but James words greatly empower me. The Bible is loaded with amazing guidance and I LOVE pouring myself into it. I used to greatly struggle to try to read and understand the Bible, but while I was sick I purchase the NLT Inspire Bible that just speaks to me! I encourage you to make it a practice to read the word – it is SO powerful and comforting!

Sure, we all want God’s will to line up with our ideals, BUT that is not always the case so rather than worrying about an outcome, I have just learned to trust that the outcome will eventually be bigger, better and more amazing than anything I could have possibly imagined!

In my opinion, worry is a waste of life, time and a good mind. Don’t get me wrong, I used to worry about EVERYTHING, but I have found such a peace with the close walk I have with Jesus and I have found a better use for my time.

“Can all your worries add a single moment to your life?” ‭‭Matthew‬ ‭6:27‬ ‭NLT

Do you know what to do when you feel worry and stress setting in? My suggestion is that you pull closer to God – pause and take time to give your worries to him. I also dive into his word and if I struggle to absorb his word at that time, I turn to a devotional that I have used for years, Jesus Calling (they also have a child and teen version of this devotional) which is written so well and just seems to be pertinent ALL the time. Then you are no longer carrying those weights – he will carry them for you!

“Give all your worries and cares to God, for he cares about you.” ‭‭1 Peter‬ ‭5:7‬ ‭NLT‬‬

The storms we go through in life have the ability to change us. We can grow positively or we can grow negatively, but that my friends are a choice.

The truth is, without change there is no growth. When we have the right attitude every experience-positive and negative- becomes an opportunity for progress.

“So all of us who have had that veil removed can see and reflect the glory of the Lord. And the Lord—who is the Spirit—makes us more and more like him as we are changed into his glorious image.”
‭‭[2 Corinthians‬ ‭3:18‬ ‭NLT]‬‬ (http://bible.com/116/2co.3.18.nlt)

I’d like to encourage you to view your storms and valleys in a positive light. I know that sounds crazy, but I promise you, through the storm, good things will be gained, progress will be made and transformation will take place. In order to be the full persons/warriors that we need to be and become, we need to walk out our walk in faith. I look at the storms and valleys as my challenge in life to improvise, adapt, overcome and TRUST.

I know I have referenced James above, but he just puts it so well… Can you tell this is a favorite verse?

“Dear brothers and sisters, when troubles of any kind come your way, consider it an opportunity for great joy. For you know that when your faith is tested, your endurance has a chance to grow. So let it grow, for when your endurance is fully developed, you will be perfect and complete, needing nothing.” ‭‭James‬ ‭1:2–4‬ ‭NLT‬

There is also something I believe that many Christians overlook and that is the power we have been given in Christ Jesus. We have the power to send the enemy packing and not to listen to his lies which is 99.9% why our storms and valleys are so tough. We allow him to cause us to worry! I have learned to view it very differently, you see, I see him for what he is and I laugh at him! When you start to do that – it is quite amazing to see how sad and lame his attempts become. He knows that he can no longer get you, trust me, he will continue to try, but once you see the spiritual attacks for what they are, they no longer have any power over you! It is an AMAZING thing!

As a friend shared with me the other day and I believe this 100%, ”Life is 10% circumstance and 90% perspective”! Think about that a bit… (Thanks Brent!) Our perspective on life can be a Game Changer!

So, please remember that the negative things you experience in life are NOT from God, but from the enemy trying to trip you up.

“Jesus came and told his disciples, “I have been given all authority in heaven and on earth. Therefore, go and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit. Teach these new disciples to obey all the commands I have given you. And be sure of this: I am with you always, even to the end of the age.” Matthew‬ ‭28:18–20‬ ‭NLT

So stop worrying and stop trying to figure God out and just simply TRUST him!

“My thoughts are nothing like your thoughts,” says the Lord. “And my ways are far beyond anything you could imagine. For just as the heavens are higher than the earth, so my ways are higher than your ways and my thoughts higher than your thoughts.” ‭‭Isaiah‬ ‭55:8–9‬ ‭NLT‬‬

“That is why we never give up. Though our bodies are dying, our spirits are being renewed every day. For our present troubles are small and won’t last very long. Yet they produce for us a glory that vastly outweighs them and will last forever! So we don’t look at the troubles we can see now; rather, we fix our gaze on things that cannot be seen. For the things we see now will soon be gone, but the things we cannot see will last forever.”  2 Corinthians‬ ‭4:16–18‬ ‭NLT

As you go through varying storms and valleys in life, keep your feet firmly planted and keep your eyes focused upward!

Gandhi said, “You may never know what results come from your actions, but if you do nothing there will be no results.”

In other words, stay persistent and keep moving forward rather than staying stagnant in the storm. Put your faith in HIM, push forward, never ask why and NEVER GIVE UP!

Mark Twain said, ”Courage is resistance to fear, mastery of fear, not absence of fear.”

What are some ways you cope through your storms?