Podcast Interview

I’m up for air. Fresh, virus-free air.

For the past 6 days I’ve been nursing my youngest daughter back to health after a bout of the flu. My kingdom baby was miserable. Mommy was miserable too. Matter of fact, the entire house was miserable. But we did what we had to do.

Sleeping on her bedroom floor.

Listening to her breathe at night.

Forcing down nasty medicine.

Praying and decreeing. Praying and decreeing.

Repeat.

I’m thankful that she came through because in this flu season some children haven’t. We can never take anything for granted.

It just so happens that on her first real day of recovery I was invited to do an interview on the podcast “Read You Later” with Lasheera Lee. I’m posting the podcast below for Disciplined Women to enjoy. What I want to share with you, however, is this.

Being a disciplined woman, for me, has meant doing what needs to be done in the season it needs to be done. It means stopping and trusting God to maintain one thing while I deal with another thing. Here’s what I mean.

When my daughter contracted the flu, everything stopped. Everything.

No professional work. No ministry work. No personal work. . . Everything stopped. As someone who is used to multi-tasking and doing a lot all at once, stopping everything requires discipline. I am learning to train my mind and heart to focus on the right thing at the right time. This past week it has been child, health, family, home. Nothing more, nothing less.

Now, for you, this may be easy. If that’s the case, you don’t need discipline in that area.

I do.

I need discipline to TRUST GOD with the other things while I deal with the main thing. There may be times when it’s flipped. I have to trust God to deal with the main thing, while I deal with the other things. How do I know when to do what?

My spirit knows.

So, essentially this is about listening to my spirit, which is led by God’s Spirit, and being disciplined in obeying what it says.

A word of caution: I did not say listen to your emotions. Your emotions or your feelings are not your spirit. Don’t do something because you merely “feel like it” or you get uncomfortable. And definitely don’t do anything because you fear what others will think or say.  That’s not your spirit. That’s your impatience and your low self-esteem.  Your spirit should be guided by the wisdom of the Holy Spirit.

Task #5 : Journal about when you’ve been moved by feelings when you should’ve been moved by the spirit. How did you know you had neglected the spirit of wisdom? How are you disciplining yourself in that area now?

Enjoy the podcast. I am the last interviewed about 30 minutes into the show, but the entire show will bless you.

 

Stop Beating Up on Yourself

On this journey to becoming a disciplined woman, we must realize that it is God who makes us better. It’s God who breaks us and molds us and shapes us and refines us. If we could do it, we would have done it.

God makes us better! 

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So don’t beat yourself up if you are not where you want to be or you are not who you want to be right now. The most important thing you can do is to decide to seek God’s help in the process of becoming who you are supposed to be.

When I started this Disciplined WomanJourney in 2018, I heard very clearly from God that so many of us are not where we can be because we aren’t disciplined in our pursuit. What does that mean?

We pursue God every now and then.

We pursue better in ourselves when it’s convenient.

We pursue more knowledge of God only when we are going through hard times.

We pursue a deeper, more accountable relationship with God’s people until it becomes uncomfortable.

God showed me women who are in desperate need of better but who are also in desperate need of discipline. He said, “If they will just pursue me wholeheartedly –when they want to and when they don’t want to, when it’s cold and when it’s hot, when it is fashionable and when it’s not — I will do it!

You don’t have to do all things and every thing right now in order to be a disciplined woman. You just have to 1) decide to be disciplined, and 2) make one disciplined decision at a time. Just one. They will add up. They have to. You can’t do better each day and come out worse. One disciplined decision at a time. Okay?

Task #5 – Make a disciplined decision today in terms of your pursuit with God and the seed you sowed at the beginning of 2018. Just one disciplined decision. Do you need to call someone? Do you need to read something? Do you need to write something? Do you need to delete someone? Do you need to ask for advice? Do you need some alone time? Make one disciplined decision and then journal about it. If you are willing, please share.

With a disciplined love,

iamdrmichelle

 

Celebrate What God Is Doing

gallery-1473796416-child-marriage-knotLast week my husband and I celebrated 22 years of marriage. To be honest, we hadn’t always “celebrated.” We loved and liked each other, reflected on the day we married, and maybe went out to dinner, but no real celebrations. Why? We were either too tired, too busy working or taking care of children.

There’s really no excuse not to celebrate your anniversary. No excuse!

We know that now.

After year 20 we started being more intentional about celebrating us. We go hard for others all the time and constantly neglect us. We’d always joke with our married friends who took vacation to the beach or excursions on a cruise that we planned to be like them when we grew up. So. . . that’s what we had to do: GROW UP.

Truth be told, there was really nothing holding us back from celebrating but the fear that things couldn’t go on without us. But that’s really arrogant, isn’t? As if God couldn’t or wouldn’t maintain His kingdom while we took a few days to love on each other.

God can. God will. God did.

So, I took some time away to celebrate with the love of my life. I know for a fact that it pleased God to see the two He joined together enjoy sweet communion with each other.

The scriptures say that “it’s the Father’s good pleasure to give us the Kingdom” (Luke 12:32). He’s given it to me and Tacuma. He’s orchestrating our lives and filling our days with His purpose. He’s keeping His promises and revealing His glory through us day by day.

He’s doing it. Not us.

Moving forward, we will be disciplined when it comes to honoring and thanking God for our marriage. We will be disciplined in stepping away from the day to day and allowing Him to move and shift things according to His will.

Because, beloved, it ain’t about us; it’s about Him.

When we honor each other and what God is doing in our lives, we honor God.

Take a moment to watch a little bit of our journey to 22 years of marriage. We hope it blesses and encourages you.

 

The First Time, Every Time

26169044_1578979082168695_860518013559370719_nI’ve learned over time that discipline is the difference in achieving my goals and not achieving my goals, in possessing the promises of God and not possessing the promises of God. Sheer discipline. That’s it. Nothing too fancy or too complicated. Just follow instructions the first time, every time.

I’m trying to get my soon-to-be 4-year old to do just that. Boy, I tell you. This child is a humbling challenge. Our first daughter complied a lot easier. This one. . . she’s the gift of humility that keeps on giving. Loving and rearing her, I have to remind myself that she possesses all of my stubbornness and “matter-a-fact-ness” too. She is ME.

Daily, we talk about following directions the first time, every time. But get this. When she does it, she reminds us that she did it. In her cute, 4-year-old voice, she says: “Don’t you like how I followed directions the first time?”  Then shines a flirty smile . . . But wait, there’s more. She goes on to say, “Does that mean I get a special treat?”

Girl, bye!

“No, you don’t get a treat because you did what I asked you to do the first time.”

Can you believe the manipulation? The sneakiness? The nerve? In no uncertain terms do we reward our child for doing what she is supposed to do, just because she did it one or even a few times.

God probably feels the same way.

“I put some money in the collection plate, God. Bless me right now!”

“I went to church, God, heal my body.”

“I was nice to someone who was mean to me. Pay off my debt, God.”

And God says, “Girl, bye!”

Sure, God rewards his children, just as I reward my daughter. But this is how it works.

  1. Go to God. Develop a relationship with Him. Stay in Him. Connect and commit to His Body (which is the church). Seek Him, not just the answer to your prayer or the supply for your need. Seek Him. Do these things consistently so it’s not like you just want something without giving anything.
  2. Believe in Him with all your being. How do you do that? Hear and obey the first time, every time. That’s faith.

Hebrews 11:6 reads: But without faith it is impossible to please Him, for he who comes to God must believe that He is, and that He is a rewarder of those who diligently seek Him.”

Another word for diligence is discipline. Make this the year you are disciplined in your seeking, in your connection, in your commitment, and in your obedience. . . the first time, and every time.

Shout out to Disciplined Woman Sharon for sharing her journal with us. It even has the mustard seeds in the center bullseye. We declare and decree right now supernatural increase from the seed you’ve sown and the diligence you display. It is so, in Jesus’ name.

I’m so excited for you all. Talk soon,

Dr. Michelle

 

When Seeds Fight

imagesYou’ve heard of “fighting words” haven’t you? When someone says something, usually about your mama, and you get ready to rumble in the streets. We’ve passed the days of fighting words, hopefully. I want to bring your attention to “fighting seeds.”

I don’t know very much about gardening, but one thing I do know is every plant can’t grow together and still blossom or produce good fruit. There’s such a thing called “plant incompatibility.” The website “Gardening Know How” explains it this way:

Determining plant incompatibility can be a guess and check situation since soil types also have an influence on what plants should not be planted together. There are a few basic rules of thumb when it comes to plants to avoid being near one another. First, check that your garden plants are all about the same size and have the same light requirements. Planting very tall plants like tomato next to bush beans, for example, is a very bad idea since the tomatoes will very likely shade out the beans. . .  Plants that need a lot of water will cause those water haters nearby a great deal of discomfort; the same goes for fertilizer. It’s always a good idea to plant things with similar nutritional and water needs together, unless they’re fiercely competitive. . . Last but not least are the plants that are allelopathic. Allelopathic plants have the capability to chemically impede the vital systems of competing plants. These plants are usually weeds, but many landscape and crop plants have been observed leaving behind allelopathic chemicals.

If every plant can’t grow together, then every seed can’t be sown together. Seed Incompatibility may be the reason for our delayed harvest. Check this out:

Deuteronomy 22:9 says, “Do not plant two kinds of seed in your vineyard; if you do, not only the crops you plant but also the fruit of the vineyard will be defiled. ” (NIV) Now, here it is in the Message translation: “Don’t plant two kinds of seed in your vineyard. If you do, you will forfeit what you’ve sown, the total production of the vineyard. “(Msg)

I know we don’t follow all the Old Testament laws and many of them are specific to the historical times and don’t pertain to us today. But. . . spiritual laws ALWAYS pertain to us. They transcend time, space, and religious doctrine. The spiritual law of sowing and reaping remains. Seedtime and harvest time remain. The natural consequences of planting tomatoes next to beans, mirror the spiritual consequences of sowing incompatible spiritual seeds.

So how does this look in the life of a disciplined woman?

A disciplined woman understands that you can’t plant every seed and reap every seed within the same season. It’s very similar to the blog I wrote over 3 years ago called “The All of Right Now.” Scroll down and read it if you haven’t.

As we begin this journey together, you may be tempted to sow a seed for your business, and a seed for your marriage, and a seed for you ministry, and a seed for your health, and a seed for you friend, and a seed for your finances, and seed for your _____________(fill in the blank.) We want it all, and God can handle it all. But, we can’t.

Psychologically and physiologically we can’t save everybody and save everything all in 2018. That ain’t even our job. Lord knows, many of us have been there and done that, and we have the anti-depressants to show for it.

I’m not saying you shouldn’t write down your dreams or pray about God working in every area of your life. You should. What I am saying is the spiritual discipline called sowing and reaping requires a specific seed to meet a specific need. And, when you sow that seed, tend to that seed. Don’t let your mind and emotions get you caught up tending to a handful of other seeds you’ve been wanting to plant too.

If you need to deal with depression in this season, deal with depression, not your friends and family who don’t understand you.

If you need to deal with forgiveness in this season, deal with forgiveness, not the education you still regret not completing.

What’s the one or two most important seeds right now? Let’s work on those and trust God to keep you through the rest. He will do it, beloved. What you must avoid is seed incompatibility. You don’t want your seeds competing against each other. Remember Deut. 22:9 “Don’t plant two kinds of seed in your vineyard. If you do, you will forfeit what you’ve sown, the total production of the vineyard.” So, as you study, pray, and meditate on these lessons, let the Holy Spirit direct you to the areas of your life that need to be dealt with right now.

Task #3 is to go to your journal and to draw a bull’s eye. After prayer (preferably in the spirit), write the one or two seeds you are sowing this year. They may not take the entire year to manifest, but only do one or two in the center of the bullseye. In the other circles, write down the areas where you need God to keep you in peace as you process your targeted seeds. Keep this bullseye near you, with you everyday. If you are feeling crafty, go ahead and clue a mustard seed in the center of the bullseye. It may sound corny, but in faith and with discipline, it works!

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As always, disciplined women share in the comments. If you know how to post a pic of your bullseye, feel free. I’d love to see them.

Love,

Dr. Michelle