Crash the Chatterbox Session 1

Crash the ChatterboxHola Divas! We had the great pleasure of starting our newest Bible Study….Crash the Chatterbox! If you missed it….you MISSED it!  Don’t worry, we will recap the Bible Study right here on the blog! So here goes….

Inside your head is a chatterbox.

The “Chatterbox” is the voice in our heads that utters lies. Lies unfortunately we believe. The chatterbox can be non stop, intimidating, insinuating, irritating and tiring.

The voice we hear quickly manifests into thoughts.

Thoughts that turn into emotions and reactions. (We reviewed a worksheet that listed how we react when we believe a thought. The worksheet is part of a process called “The Work” by Byron Katie. See the worksheet HERE.)

In Crash the Chatterbox: Hearing God’s Voice Above All Others, Pastor Steven Furtick focuses on four key areas in which negative thoughts are most debilitating: insecurity, fear, condemnation and discouragement.

He also teaches four confessions to CRASH THE CHATTERBOX.

  1. God says I am-to overpower insecurity
  2. God says He will-to overpower fear
  3. God says I can –to overpower discouragement
  4. God says He has-to overpower condemnation

During session one, we focused on insecurity.

The chatterbox tries to make us feel insecure by attacking our identity:

-You’re not pretty or smart.

-You are not talented enough.

-You will NEVER get over ________.

-You are stuck and never going anywhere.

-You will be alone FOREVER.

To CRASH the chatterbox when it tries to make us insecure about who we are, we have to say OUT LOUD who God says we are.

God says I am fearfully and wonderfully made. (Psalm 139:4)

God says I am the head and not the tail…above and not beneath. (Deuteronomy 28:13)

God says I am his workmanship. (Ephesians 2:10)

God says I am redeemed. (Romans 3:25)

It would be easy to repeat these confessions if the chatterbox is always forthcoming. But the chatterbox is a master of deception. It tells a little of the truth but distorts things.

Pastor Furtick gave us an example of this in Chapter 1:

Forthcoming:

Perhaps you should take steps toward spending more focused time reading your Bible, because God has so many promises and truths He wants to reveal to you today.

Distortion:

If you really loved God, you’d spend more time reading your Bible, like people do who have their priorities in order.

Both statements contain of seed of truth. The difference is the first statement has an undertone of AFFIRMATION. The second statement has an undertone of CONDEMNATION.

We can never tune out ALL the chatter—the lies in our minds—but we can learn to tune IN to God’s voice. The chatterbox says we are worthless and rejected, but God says we are His beloved children through Christ.

Watch the highlights of Pastor Furtick’s message “I know I am”.  (Be sure to watch even if you attended Session 1…this video is different from what we watched in our actual study.)

To be prepared for our next study, please read chapters 1-7 in the Crash the Chatterbox book.

Join us in person!  RSVP on our meetup page.

Five Minute Friday-Yes

Hola Divas! Happy Friday. One of the most requested things from our blog have been the Five Minute Friday posts. Sooooo, they are back! Each week, Kate Motaung posts a one-word prompt on her blog and women from all over the world write from their hearts for five minutes then share their words.

If you have never read our Five-Minute Friday posts in the past, you really need to check them out! Today’s word is YES.

Five years ago, I said YES to teaching an eight week session of ZUMBA at the Kernersville Parks and Recreation Center.  Nothing major, just 8 weeks.  I remember thinking “if I can get fifteen people to consistently come to class”…. When over fifty people came to the kick-off class and we had forty-five people stuffed in the small upper room of the gym on our first official class, I couldn’t believe so many people said YES.

To God be the Glory!!!!

My yes was and is bigger than me.

The women who said YES were not my family or close friends.  My family and friends had said YES to so many of my adventures (Amway, Mary Kay, etc)….so God filled our classes.

He ALWAYS chooses us.

From the very moment I stepped on the platform to teach, I knew this dance thing would be part of my ministry.  Yet, I wasn’ t planning anything because, I only said YES to an eight week session.

Half-way through our first session, ladies began to ask: “when is the next session?”.  So I said YES again and again and again until it has been FIVE years of leading the most awesome group of ladies on the planet.

Leading?  I said YES to an eight week session of ZUMBA……that’s it.

But God had other plans.

Plans for our class to serve as a safe haven for women weary from everyday life.

DFD-Belong

Plans for our class to include a Christian Fitness Program (Devoted Fitness). {Oh, and even though some other instructors told me I would probably lose some people when I started playing Christian Music….more people said YES than ever!}

Devoted Fitness

Plans for our class to study God’s Word together. {Can you imagine several crazy women come at 8:30 prior to our Saturday class for Bible Study?…They just keep saying YES!}

Plans for our class to travel together.

Dance Fit Divas Beach

Plans for new friends to be made.

Laura, Becky, Alexis

But for me personally, God had plans for me to pour out my “seriously-don’t-have-it-all-together-life” into other women.

Dance Fit Divas Free-80s

Really????...because I only said YES to an eight week session of ZUMBA.

Honeybee Festival

For I know the plans I have for you,” says the Lord. “They are plans for good and not for disaster, to give you a future and a hope. Jeremiah 29:11

Five Minute Friday-Here

Hola Divas! Happy Friday.   One of the most requested things from our blog has been the Five Minute Friday posts. Sooooo, they are back! Each week, Kate Motaung posts a one-word prompt on her blog and women from all over the world write from their hearts for five minutes then share their words.

If you have never read our Five-Minute Friday posts in the past, you really need to check them out! Today’s word is HERE.

Sometimes, getting to your destination is a reason to celebrate.  As you get settled, you take a breath and happily announce..”I’m HERE!!!”.

At other times, HERE is an emotion.  Someone asks you how you are and you simply respond…”I’m HERE“.

HERE can be a destination, an emotion, a way of specifying your location, or a simple answer to let your teacher know you are in class.

Most of all….HERE is the only place we can be right now.

Although I know this, I spend a lot of time rehashing feelings and happenings from old destinations and worrying about those I have not yet experienced.

All my thinking can get pretty noisy.

Perhaps that is why I like the music in our classes so loud.

It makes it kinda hard to do anything but shake, smile and sweat with a great beat and beautiful faces surrounding you.

80’s Class July 9, 2015

But what seems so simple…a dance fitness class, is actually part  of our preparation for our next assignment.

As we take care of ourselves, we are better equipped to take care of others.

And I heard the voice of the Lord saying, “Whom shall I send, and who will go for us?” Then I said, “Here I am! Send me.” Isaiah 6:8

 

Zumba girls

80’s Party July 9, 2015

 

Five Minute Friday on Saturday-FREE

Hola Divas and happy weekend!  One of the most requested things from our blog has been the Five Minute Friday posts.  Sooooo, it’s back…a day late but back nonetheless!  Each week, Kate Motaung posts a one-word prompt on  her blog and women from all over the world write from their hearts for five minutes then share their words.

If you have never read our Five-Minute Friday posts in the past, you really need to check them out! Today’s word is FREE.

Earlier this month, we had an 80’s party during class.  To say it was a blast is a complete understatement.  The Divas went all in with costumes, make-up and a boat load of sassy-ness.

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Look at the smiles…these ladies were FREE……for one silly moment.

With every thing going on in our country, FREEdom has seemed hard…polarizing even.

But there is something liberating about shaking your hips, sweating, hooping and hollering with a room full of other women…and it all starts with a prayer.  Yep, that’s the way the Divas get down.

God’s word is true….”For where two or three are gathered together……there am I in the midst of them”. (Matthew 18:20)

I caught a glimpse of what being FREE really means standing on stage, watching beautiful women of all sizes, shapes, colors and life circumstances dance to a rendition of Gloria Estefan’s 80’s hit “Conga”.

FREE was that exact moment.

Divas Dancing

FREE was not thinking about anything else but being fully immersed in what was happening and being so thankful for it.

Dance Fit Divas Free-80s

 

 

 

 

How to decide what is best…Your Move Bible Study

Has life EVER provided you with a circumstance that you NEVER thought you would be in and there was a decision that had to be made quickly?

Unless you live under a rock and never leave your rock palace, it is impossible to evade trying times and the split-second decisions that come with them.

So what do you?  How do you decide what is best?

Options-Decisions-Choices

In our newest Bible Study, Your Move by Andy Stanley, we have been learning how to make sound decisions when the time frame is short, options are limited yet a Diva still has to put on her big girl panties and make a decision.

Throughout the Bible study,  we are challenged to ask ourselves four questions to make sound decisions with God’s help.

Session one, Andy inspired us to get gut honest with ourselves and ask….

Why am I am I doing this….REALLY? Stated another way….Am I being completely honest with myself? Or …what is the real reason I am making this choice?

Determining our true motives for leaning towards one decision over another is very important because as Andy reminded us, we spend tremendous amounts of time and energy deceiving ourselves.

There is a Biblical answer for why we can rationalize and convince ourselves to do things that are not the best for us:

The heart is deceitful above all things and beyond cure. Who can understand it? Jeremiah 17:9 (NIV) 

I don’t know about you, but I have sweet talked myself into a plethora of bad decisions:  unwise and unnecessary purchases, dietary indiscertions, over booking my schedule, procrastinating, surfing the net or flipping through Facebook (just to name a few).

Taking a few moments to ask ourselves (“Why am I doing this…REALLY?”) enables us to get gut honest.  For example:

I am surfing the net because I don’t want to clean up, prepare for the next day, or finish the report.

I feel lonely and shopping makes me feel better.

I am afraid.

When we ask ourselves why….it allows the Holy Spirit to guide us towards the best decision.

After we determine WHY we are doing something, session two suggested we ask ourselves:  “What story do I want to tell?”.

Image source:  http://threadling.com/

Image source: http://threadling.com/

In every decision-making environment, transition period, or drama producing activity, we are writing the script for our future story.

To illustrate this point, Andy used the story of Joseph (Genesis 37-50).   Joseph faced family betrayal, slavery, and imprisonment.  Often, he was forced to choose between no win options.  Yet despite difficult situations, Joseph made choices with God-centered integrity and faithfulness and he was later rewarded.

When Joseph was finally able to reconcile with his family he said these words:

You intended to harm me, but God intended it all for good. He brought me to this position so I could save the lives of many people. Genesis 50:20

WOW.

This morning, we discover the third question Andy suggests we asks ourselves….”Is there a tension that needs my attention“.

Join us in person for Bible Study in Kernersville, NC get the details on our Meetup Page.

Or if you are too far away or you have schedule conflicts…get the handouts HERE.  You can also watch the actual video messages from Andy Stanley  You Tube. Click HERE for the session one message.

Word Theme, Playlist and Schedule Changes

Last weekend, we had our normal “Soulful Saturday” class featuring Devoted Fitness  and Zumba toning but we added a twist.  Each diva was asked to bring a white t-shirt to class so she could write her “word theme” for 2015.

DSCN2213

Sometimes a single word can change everything.

At the beginning of January, many people make resolutions for how they want the year to be.  By January 31, resolutions have been abandoned for one reason or another and the feelings on inadequacy, “what’s the point”, and why try rear their ugly heads.

We ended the first month of 2015 by declaring a word theme for the year to help keep us focused but be flexible to allow life to happen.

We started the first day of February with dance, praise and POWERFUL WORDS!

One glimpse at these smiles and you know God is GOOD!

Several people have asked me for Saturday’s playlist…find it HERE.

WE DO NOT HAVE CLASS THIS SATURDAY (February 7, 2015 or March 7, 2015) DUE TO A SCHEDULING CONFLICTS… check our calendar HERE.

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The Best Yes…Playing Your Part

 

TheBestYes_1024x1024

Hola Divas! Welcome to our fall Bible Study…..The Best Yes by Lysa Terkeurst!  I don’t know about y’all but September is the “real” New Year for me.  It is the beginning of a new school year, new extra curricular activity schedule….new traffic patterns, new car pool….simply put, the “real” new year. As such, what better time to critically evaluate how we spend our time?

 

 

The Best Yes will help us:

  • Cure the disease to please with a biblical understanding of the command to love.
  • Escape the guilt of disappointing others by learning the secret of the small no.
  • Overcome the agony of hard choices by embracing a wisdom-based decision-making process.
  • Rise above the rush of endless demands and discover your Best Yes today.

During our first session together, we learned what the “Best Yes” is.

The Best Yes is us playing our part…. at school, at home, at work, wherever we are!

So how do we get this “Best Yes”?

We find our Best Yes by asking God what we should do with our schedules….big things and little mundane things.

When we ask Him, He will guide us.

Isaiah 30:21  Whether you turn to the right or to the left, your ears will hear a voice behind you, saying, “This is the way; walk in it.” 

We ask God…sometimes.  But often, we need an answer now or we become so busy… asking God simply slips our minds.

I so desperately want to hear God’s voice directing me on which steps to take…don’t you?

Lucky for us, Lysa provides us with a process for arriving at our best yes!  Read chapters 1-3 and join us later this week as we read through God’s Word and discover what steps to take towards our “Best Yes”.

Wonder Woman

 

 

Made to Crave Bible Study-Peace

Made to Crave Bible Study

Hola Divas! It seems like FOREVER since we have gotten together!  We were not able to meet at our normal time two weeks ago due to an event at the Rec center and then we had a BIG SNOW. Sooooooo, let’s spend a little time getting back on track!  If you are just joining us…your timing is perfect!

For our current Bible Study, we are reading Made to Crave by Lysa TerKeurst.  Made to Crave is the missing link between a woman’s desire to be healthy and the spiritual empowerment necessary to make that happen.  We have had a blast laughing at each other and learning from each other! It has been nice to know that we ALL struggle with something..especially when it comes to food choices.

When we meet in person (just before our Soulful Saturday classes at 8:30am), we watch a video devotional by Lysa TerKeurst that goes with the book.  With each session, Lysa gives us a word for the week.

During the first week, our word was EMPOWERMENT.  Lysa’s main point for week one was for us to change our perspective about making healthy food choices.  We have been moving from feeling deprived…..

Deprived to feeling empowered…..

empowered

One method we shared to help with feeling empowered was the Plate Method.

Plate Method

Did you catch that half of the plate is veggies?  Just checking! (LOL!)

For the next session, we talked about being Determined NOT Desperate.

When we are  desperate,  we want instant gratification.  We become laser focused on what we want. We see what we want. We think about what we want. We simply MUST have it or we couldn’t possibly live on!

In desperate times, we just might do, say, eat, or give away….ANYTHING!

girl-eating-chocolate-cake-280X280

 

For this week’s session, our word is PEACE.

Peace Sign

Often, how peaceful we feel is tied to our decisions.  Our decisions about what we eat and what thoughts we allow to take residence in our minds.

When we start a healthy eating plan and then have an indulgence, we begin to feel guilty.  When we step on the scale and it does not reflect all of our hard work for the week, we feel defeated, frustrated, and angry.

There is NOTHING peaceful about feeling guilty, frustrated, defeated, or angry.

scale

As you prepare for our time together this week, reflect on 1 Corinthians 10:23 (AMP)

All things are legitimate [permissible—and we are free to do anything we please], but not all things are helpful (expedient, profitable, and wholesome). All things are legitimate, but not all things are constructive [to character]and edifying [to spiritual life].

We CAN have, eat, or think ANYTHING we want….but not everything we acquire, consume, or ruminate over is constructive.

As you go about your days this week, ask yourself this question about EVERYTHING:

Is this the wise thing to do/eat/think about? (Taken straight from Andy Stanley’s Best Question Ever)

Oooh, challenging huh?  Not should I eat this, do this, think about this, go here, date him/her..but is this the WISE THING TO DO?

Remember, everything is permissible but not all things are helpful!

When you get weak, think on this:

For God is working in you, giving you the desire and the power to do what pleases Him. (Philippians 2:13)

Please make sure you have read through chapter 6 to be prepared for this week’s discussion!

Dancing Makes it All Better

With all of the snow, we had to cancel class this week.  I know it has only been a week, but it seems like EONS since we have danced together.  Perhaps it was just me, but being “snowed-in” became “not-so-fun-anymore” half-way through day two.  To add insult to injury, my sweetie and I were separated due to a business trip so we were not “snowed-in” at all! Plus, today was/is Valentine’s Day…and I am alone.

Without a simple little Snow Dance Challenge that made me laugh until I cried, I might would have cringed as I watched everyone’s posted pictures of their Valentine’s gifts.

Instead of cringing, I had a song of praise in my heart! God has surrounded me with some awesome people…who love to Dance.  Annnd, if you didn’t know……..Dancing makes it all better.

Dance

One of our “divas” challenged some of us on Facebook to dance one of our class routines in the snow since we couldn’t have class.  She and her daughter posted their video early yesterday morning and that started a firestorm of “Snow Dance Videos“.

Several ladies from our class posted videos and then ladies and GENTS from other classes and cities began to post.  With each crazy dance video, God reminded me how much HE loves us.  What a blessing to be ABLE to go outside and dance around like crazy people and then POST videos that confirm our craziness on the world-wide-web!

If you are one of those “non-dancers” who just don’t believe that hopping, salsa-ing, shaking, doing a jazz square, or simply doing the bird dance will make you happy, I challenge you to read up on the Cebu Detention and Rehabilitation Center in the Philippines. Once infamous for its gang violence, the prison is now famous for its dancing prisoners.  Dancing is MANDITORY for Cebu prisoners.  If prisoners refuse to dance, they lose privileges!

cebudancinginmates

The prisoners’ hard work has spawned one of the unlikeliest hits on the Internet — a reworking of Michael Jackson’s 1980s smash hit video “Thriller.” Filmed by the prison boss, Brian Garcia, the video has drawn more than 56 million hits on YouTube. But more than just internet fame, Garcia says there has not been a violent incident in nearly a year and a half. “They are just not hostile anymore,” he says.

The dancers are a mix of accused murderers, rapists and drug dealers. They are led by a choreographer who is accused of mass murder.  Authorities at the prison say that dance gives the prisoners a renewed sense of worth and confidence, helps them learn to work together, allows them to exercise and increases their self-esteem.

A movie will soon hit theaters called “Dance of the Steel Bars”.  “Dance of the Steel Bars” is a story of corruption and redemption featuring the real life stories of the CEBU prisoners.

Through a silly little “Snow Dance Challenge” we danced together virtually and felt so good we couldn’t help but smile and perhaps we too became a little less violent:)

You turned my wailing into dancing; you removed my sackcloth and clothed me with joy…… Psalm 30:11

Dancing makes it all better.

If you STILL don’t believe it… watch my Snow Dance Video: (Click HERE if you cannot see the video in the post.)

 

Determined….NOT Desperate-(Made to Crave Bible Study)

Made to Crave Bible Study

Hola Divas!  Welcome to week three of our bible study, Made to Crave by Lysa TerKuerst.  If you are just joining us, you may want to check out previous Made to Crave  posts or visit our Meetup Page

During each session, Lysa gives us a theme word.  For the first session, the word was empowerment.  Our word for this session is Determined.

Webster’s online dictionary defines determined as: having made a firm decision and being resolved not to change it. 

Determined is a mindset.

At the opposite end of the “mindset spectrum’ is desperate.  Desperate is defined as: feeling, showing, or involving a hopeless sense that a situation is so bad as to be impossible to deal with.  

As Lysa so eloquently put it…Desperation breeds defeat. 

When we are  desperate,  we want instant gratification.  We become laser focused on what we want. We see what we want. We think about what we want. We simply MUST have it or we couldn’t possibly live on!

In desperate times, we just might do, say, eat, or give away….ANYTHING!

girl-eating-chocolate-cake-280X280

In Genesis 25:29-34, we find an exchange between two brothers illustrating what desperation can do:

One day when Jacob was cooking some stew, Esau arrived home from the wilderness exhausted and hungry.

(Can you say set up for desperation?  When I arrive home after working all day exhausted and hungry…the best intentions in the world just may not be able to keep me from  running to a drive through instead of cooking a healthy meal.)

Esau said to Jacob, “I’m starved! Give me some of that red stew!” “All right,” Jacob replied, “but trade me your rights as the firstborn son.”

(Do we have some sibling rivalry going on?  Jacob did NOT have Esau’s best interests in mind.  However, Esau’s defenses were down…he smelled the soup, the saw the soup, he wanted the soup, he simply had to have the soup. So….. he went straight into crazytown-manipulation-drama-king mode:

“Look, I’m dying of starvation!” said Esau. “What good is my birthright to me now?”

I am sure NONE of you have eeeevvvver  gone into drama queen mode (the attitude, pouting, noodle-necking, sulking, silent treatment, oh no I am fine…just about to die), when you desperately wanted something.

pout

Divas, we have to be careful with desperation…it breeds defeat. We want …..and we want ….and we start manipulating to get what we want and before we know it….desperation turns our manipulation back on us,  and WE GET PLAYED!

But Jacob said, “First you must swear that your birthright is mine.” So Esau swore an oath, thereby selling all his rights as the firstborn to his brother, Jacob. Then Jacob gave Esau some bread and lentil stew. Esau ate the meal, then got up and left. He showed contempt for his rights as the firstborn.

Divas would you trade your inheritance for soup?  

soup 

One method of handling “physical” desperation is to not allow ourselves to get soooo hungry we become desperate.

Part of the homework for this week is to determine in advance what we are going to eat so that we are not caught off guard…exhausted and hungry!  If you need help, check out our post on the plate method and plan out at least 3 days worth of meals.

Maybe you don’t have a food issue.  Where do you become so desperate in your life that you make “feel-good right now” decisions with painful long-term consequences?

Come on back later this week as we talk about “spiritual determination”.

Keep us posted about how things are going in the comments section!