Happy Hour 3/26/2015

Michelle Teague collage

 

I woke up in the middle of the night with this verse going through my mind: Matthew 6:33-“Seek first the Kingdom of God and His righteousness (Him, His Word, His ways, His Provision, His total forgiveness, His Love, His understanding, His insight, His direction…) and all things will be added to you.” And before I could go back to sleep…I felt like the Lord said, now…read/say this verse over emphasizing each word from beginning to the end… SEEK first the Kingdom… Seek FIRST the Kingdom of God…Seek first THE Kingdom of God… Pretty much figured out my job is to seek all things Him and He will take care of all things me.  :-)  ;-)

READ MORE: About Michelle Teague

Jer 616 promise

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Toxic Tuesday Guest Post: Toxic Family Part 2

Toxic Tuesday biochem hazard smallToday I am once again turning to, Ron Corzine, of SCOPE (Simple Concepts of Practical Equipping) to help us sort through family discord in part 2 of Dealing With Toxic Family Members. The Bible offers practical applications for any problem, conflict or question; forever and always. We can count on God’s word.

“So what do we do about toxic family members?  First let me say I hope you are not thinking that just a few quick steps or applied principles with fix all your toxic relationships.  It won’t be that easy.  So often we think if we can just do a couple of little things, then everything will begin to get better. Maybe – maybe not.   I am going to approach this by suggesting at least four prayers you can begin to pray. This is really the place to start.  Today we will look at the first prayer.” ~Ron Corzine

Continue Reading: Dealing With Toxic Family Members: Part 2

For Part 1: Dealing With Toxic Family Members—READ HERE

Happy Hour 3/19/2015

 

Michelle Teague collage

Wow! God has given this next generation a very special anointing of His Spirit to lead them and guide them in ALL things the future holds. Be constantly in prayer over them—they are rising up to His call with boldness and courage! I stand in honor and amazement…if we are not “for” them…I believe we are against Him.

 

About Michelle: READ HERE

 

Jer 616 promise

Toxic Tuesday Guest Post: Toxic Family

DEALING WITH TOXIC FAMILY MEMBERS

 

Toxic Tuesday biochem hazard smallToxic family members have existed since the first family—go read through the book of Genesis for multiple examples. Unfortunately the examples don’t end there. The Bible is full of sin, dysfunction, rebellion, murder, betrayal and more; among and against family members.

I’m grateful God loves the unlovely, calls the unqualified, forgives the sinner, and gives purpose for the pain; which is often self-inflicted by foolish souls. He takes the smallest bit of faith, smaller than a mustard seed, and credits it to us as righteousness.

In today’s society, functional families are the exception because dysfunction is rampant in every demographic across the globe.

The good news is: It’s never too late to begin the detoxification process; by faith!

Today I am once again turning to, Ron Corzine, of SCOPE (Simple Concepts of Practical Equipping) to help us sort through family discord. The Bible offers practical applications for any problem, conflict or question; forever and always. We can count on God’s word.

Here are excerpts…

Definition: toxic is when two people are stuck in a way of relating that is poisonous to one or the other. It’s affecting them both. They just can’t seem to move on. It only causes hurt and more hurt. It can be destructive physically, spiritually, and emotionally. That’s what it means to be toxic. That’s what we’re talking about.

So you don’t say, “How poisonous is it? Are you more toxic than I am?” No. You do something about it. When it’s toxic you have to act. You can’t just leave something that’s toxic alone and expect it to get better. It doesn’t! You have to do something about it.

CONTINUE READING: Dealing with Toxic Family Members

 

 

Happy Hour 3/12/2015

—with Michelle TeagueMichelle Teague

Happy Hour 4

 

 

About Michelle READ HERE

Jer 616 promise

 

 

Lack of sleep

Toxic Tuesday: TOXIC SLEEP

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Are you aware the computer screen stimulates our cognitive processing? It does! And it has been scientifically proven that when the brain’s electrical activity increases the neurons start to race. I don’t know about you but I don’t want any part of my body racing right before bed time. I want to slow down, relax, and turn my mind off to any distractions.

I recently came to the realization that my adrenal glands are fatigued and my cortisol levels are not balanced. I’m not blaming this on electronics but when electronics accelerate our brain responses, the stress hormone produced by the adrenal gland, cortisol, is freed to produce anxiety; tension.  How many of us think, “I’m ready for bed. How can I stress myself out and ensure a restless night of sleep?  Better yet, bring on the insomnia!”?

Allow me to explain to you a bit of information about the hypothalamus. I learned this vocabulary word after my son, A.J.’s, severe traumatic brain injury. His sweet little brain was squished in about every direction which damaged his hypothalamus. One more reason he is a walking, talking, answered prayer. I referred to his hypothalamus as his, “Hippothalamus” just for fun.

Back to the hypothalamus: This area of the brain controls several sleep activities and delays the release of melatonin; a sleep-inducing hormone. When the blue light  from the computer screen, or your tech gadget of choice, passes through the retina into the hippo the melatonin’s release is shut down.

Back to A.J.: He had a difficult time sleeping for several months after his accident because his hippo was not working properly during the healing process. His hippo is now healed!

As technology takes up more of our time; down to our last moments of the day, we are actually sleeping less and we are resetting our internal clocks. Our hippo isn’t relaxing when it’s processing is supposed to be slowing down and feeling weighty, creating heavy eyelids for bedtime.

As I have recently learned through the diagnosis of an auto-immune disease; a minimum of 6 hours uninterrupted sleep is essential to good emotional and physical health; and a total of 7-9 hours sleep achieved each night. Take good care of your brain chemistry and it will take care of your body.

 

Here are a few tips to unwind for restful sleep:

  1. Plan 15-30 minutes of technology free time before going to bed. Be old-fashioned: Read a paper book.
  2. Keep the bedroom free from all tech gadgets; including TV’s and iPods/MP3s.
  3. Keep the room as dark as possible. This contributes to increased melatonin production.
  4. Don’t set the snooze button to gradually wake-up. Use the alarm, once, and maximize sound sleep.
  5. Don’t use Tylenol PM to achieve sleep. Why? Read this Medical article. Plus, Tylenol PM causes irreversible memory loss.
  6. If you must use technology before bed buy a pair of amber blue light eye glasses and use them 1-3 hours before bedtime. These glasses filter/ eliminate the blue component of light and allow melatonin to naturally produce.

Dear Sleep

Happy Hour 3/05/2015

—with Michelle Teague

Michelle enjoyed warm, breezy temps last week.
Michelle enjoyed warm, breezy temps last week.
And came home to, brrrr!
And came home to, brrrr, this week!

 

“Sometimes after we have been praying for something and/or someone and the prayer is not answered, or we don’t see it being answered the way we expected, or in the time frame we were desiring we begin to wane in our faith. We wane in our expectancy and wane in our hope.

One time when I was praying about a situation like this I felt God speak to my heart, ‘Daughter, I have heard you. I am answering this prayer. You have fought long enough. And now, I ask you to simply rest. Let me have all of your expectations of how this will turn out…how this will happen…and when you will see it answered.’

I asked Him, ‘How in the world do I do that?!’

And I felt Him say, ‘With praise. That will help you take your focus off of what is going on around you. And in the praising…your heart, your mind, and your eyes will see things in an entirely new way. One of the BEST weapons you have on that little warrior belt of yours…is Praise. The enemy cannot stand in its midst…he cannot stand to hear you praising Me, especially in these situations.’

From that day on…Praising Him became my preferred weapon of choice!”

 

About Michelle—READ HERE

 

Jer 616 promise

Toxic Tuesday: Warnings and Red Flags

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Toxic Tuesday: Warnings and Red Flags

I’ve found a few articles written by other bloggers that I know will appeal to the GiveMe Chocolate readers. I’m finding the, ‘cream of the crop,’ articles to help you possibly avoid toxic relationships. I posted one such article recently, “Ten Toxic Traits.”

A question I have often been asked is, “How do we protect our children from abusive, toxic personalities?”

I wish I had an answer. If only there was a full-proof way to avoid such relationships. A 100%—fully healed—heart back—guarantee for those who find themselves living in such a relationship. There isn’t. Christians who are mature, prayer covered people with a daily relationship with God can find themselves in an abusive, toxic relationship. In scripture we find a God-ordained toxic marriage between Hosea and Gomer; recorded in the book of Hosea.

I found another well written article, “Deal Breakers: Advice to Unmarried Women (and Daughters)” at Visionary Womanhood: Because to live courageously, we need to see clearly. The article was written to help women avoid marrying abusers.  In today’s world, full of self-centeredness, pornography, and personality disorders; specifically, narcissistic personality disorder—it’s becoming increasingly difficult to recognize false advertisers; also known as: A wolf in sheep’s clothing, a street angel and home devil, a biblical fool, a toxic person—an abuser.

Occasionally I can see the search terms entered when people stumble across my blog. Take a look at what some of the search terms are:

  • How to avoid toxic people
  • Help for an abusive Christian marriage
  • Interacting with narcissistic people
  • Why do I allow abusive Christian people to bother me
  • Abusive missionary husband
  • Help for abused missionary married to narcissistic personality disorder
  • How to thrive in an abusive relationship with pastor missionary
  • Difference between immaturity and controlling abusive boyfriend
  • How to confront an abusive person
  • Christian therapeutic separation
  • Covert narcissists
  • Toxic relationships in scripture
  • Does the Bible say I have to stay in an abusive marriage
  • What would Jesus do in an abusive relationship
  • Christian narcissistic personality disorder
  • Leaving a toxic relationship
  • Biblical fool modern-day narcissist
  • Wives that predators choose
  • Emotionally toxic people
  • How to protect from crazy makers
  • Detachment in verbally abusive relationships marriage
  • Scripture to help me trust God to handle abusive person
  • When a narcissist invades your boundaries
  • Writing a letter to someone toxic in your life
  • Manipulators abusers defending yourself
  • How to keep calm and walk away from abusive relationship
  • How to pray for someone in a toxic relationship
  • Biblical fools
  • What does the Bible say about divorcing the mentally ill
  • Traits of a crazy maker husband
  • How toxic people keep you off guard

And the above are just a sampling from a list far too long to include here.

 

“An abuser doesn’t introduce himself like this, “Hello – it’s nice to meet you. I’d like to take you on a whirlwind romance, sweep you off your feet, marry you, and then abuse you until death do us part.” Tweet This They follow in the footsteps of their father, the devil. They enter your world like an angel of light. A thing of beauty and wonder.” ~ Visionary Womanhood

You NEED to read this! For yourself or for someone you know or love. There are excellent points to ponder, clues to look for, applications to be made, and at the end; there is a humorous video to break the mood of this heavy topic.

 

Be empowered: Advice to Unmarried Women and Daughters

 Happy Hour with Michelle TeagueMichelle Teague

One day when I was a young wife and mother…I was talking to God about some things that were heavy on my mind…things/issues/people I was having trouble with. By the end of that conversation…He gave me some of His wisdom and insight, which I have applied, to and over, MANY things frustrating me, causing me to feel pain, hurt, etc. (basically anything negative coming from inside of me, or from without). IF I will just run my “stuff” to Him and through Him…no matter what it is, where it came from, and/or who it came from…it will be turned around for good…in my heart first, then outward. In other words… my job is to take it ALL to Him FIRST (even before my husband, girls, friends, and family), so I can receive His understanding, peace, joy, etc… then, others won’t be having to deal with my junk, and I won’t have to, therefore, deal with more junk. ;-) And anytime I have honored Him in this…He has never failed me.  :-) 

‪#‎HeisSOfaithful‬‪#‎runitthroughHimfirst‬ ‪#‎grateful‬ :-)

More about Michelle…(click here) 

Jer 616 promise

 

 

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They hate you because they hate Jesus in you.

“If the world hates you, keep in mind that it hated me first.” John 15:18 (NIV)

They cannot tolerate your calmness in the storm, your resolve to listen only to your Savior in trust and obedience, and your ability to not allow their arrows to penetrate your heart, soul, mind and strength. Little does the abusive person know; Jesus is deflecting the arrows from ever reaching you as your gaze it set on Him.

Mindset of abusive people:
self control or lack thereof

 

 

 

Happy Hour with Michelle Teague…

Michelle Teague

I have had the pleasure of knowing Michelle for sixteen years and I’m blessed to call her friend. I taught her youngest daughter at a Christian Moms’ Day Out program for three years. I grew to know her more closely the following three years through our local homeschool group where we spent time in each other’s home for play dates between our children. Although we each moved away from Stillwater, Oklahoma, to different states we have maintained a long distance friendship through the years.

Michelle is now from the Franklin, Tennessee, area where she lives with her husband, Rick. They have three daughters, one son (in-law), and two of the sweetest, cutest grandbabies; each with personality to the max!

Michelle’s heart for the Lord is beautiful and her ability to hear from Him and apply His words, heart and ministry in a mentoring, life coach kind of way to a hurting world is a top priority to her. She is a breath of positive purpose served with joy, encouragement, tenderness and love; steeped in prayerful communication with her Abba Father.

Michelle loves the Lord and has a passion, drive and heart for God’s children to live life to the fullest. She often encourages her Facebook friends, through the tool of social media, by sharing lessons the Lord is teaching her. I will pass her nuggets of wisdom on to you.

I’m confident that Michelle’s relationship with the Lord, her history, her ministry training and gifting, her compassion, and her prayer life make her a great mentor for the GiveMe Chocolate audience.

I love her and you’ll soon see why!

 

“If we don’t think, plan, dream bigger than ourselves…then, we are better able to take credit for whatever happens in our lives…making it easier to leave God out. SO raise the bar SO high there’s no doubt WHO really did it!!”  :-)   ~Michelle Teague

 

Look next week for: “Happy Hour with Michelle”

Kick back after a hard day of work and enjoy the intoxicating goodness of true Love and Wisdom. The GiveMe Chocolate ‘Bar’ won’t put a dent in your wallet!

 

Toxic Tuesday: Ten Toxic Traits

Pride vs Humility

This is straight-forward. The below article describes how the traits of legalism, hypocrisy, guilt trips, nitpicking, maligned motives, guilt by association, ridicule, flattery, intimidation and pressure, and gossip look in a real life setting.

I’m referring to traits of people in the church; not the world. Ouch!

Unfortunately, I can recall times in my life when I participated in some of these sins. I hope you cannot say the same, and I pray you are not on the receiving end of these weapons. Talk about unneeded stress!

May the scriptures taught in this article jolt all of us awake to the finished work of Christ on the cross; His love, His mercy, His forgiveness, His ways.

I urge you to read through these one at a time; asking God to show you any truth He wants to teach you, any area He wants to clean, any healing He wants to offer. He is able; and best of all, He is tender!

Enjoy;  but more importantly, apply this quick read: Simple Concepts of Practical Equipping: Ten Toxic Traits.

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Bleeding Hearts

A Valentine’s Day thought…

“A Happy Good Valentine’s Day thought..

Bleeding Hearts

Do you believe God is who He says He is in the Bible?

Do you believe He can do anything He wants; including but not limited to acts recorded in the Bible?

Do you believe God can heal the sick?

Do you believe God can raise the dead?

 

If God can heal the sick and raise the dead—

He can heal a sick, broken or dead relationship.

It may take time; or it may be instant, complete and permanent.

 

Do you lack belief in any of the above areas?

Pray for what you lack!

Act in faith—

Your faith demonstrates there is another option though you cannot not see it with your eyes or hear it with your ears. You can’t explain it but you see it with your faith. It exists because your Father in Heaven can do whatever pleases Him; and your faith pleases Him.

 

Below is a post from Beth Moore’s Living Proof Blog:

 

A Valentine’s Post: I Believe and I Don’t

 

I believe in romance.

I believe in the love between a man and a woman.

I believe that love can be sustained for a lifetime.

I believe in falling back in love over and over.

I believe in making up.

I believe that good marriages are wed of soft hearts and hard heads: a tenderness to love and be loved and a tenacity too bone-headed to quit.

I believe that laughter lasts longer than sex.

I believe that many people marry people they do not love.

I believe that desperation gets confused with affection.

I believe that many couples divorce that could have made it.

I believe that God can resurrect hearts that are stone-cold dead and create love between a couple ex nihilo.

Continue Reading: Because life’s just not always great. But, man, it can be good.

Thought for the day…

 

“This year, let us ask God to dissolve all our hopes into a single hope: to know Christ and to be found in Him. May this be a year of desire radically transformed, a deeper, truer, knowing of Christ as our All-Sufficient One.”

~Elisabeth Elliot

 

Toxic Tuesday: Identity Declaration

Toxic Tuesday biochem hazard smallI’m sure you have heard a pastor, teacher or professional counselor talk about reprogramming the old tapes in your head with new tapes; removing the negative thoughts, bad words spoken over you, and perhaps lies told about you. For the sake of keeping up with technology lets throw the tapes out and hook up to iTunes with some Beats wireless headphones.

When we keep our eyes and ears fixed on God and His word we find our listening experience personal and real. The Beats’ brand advertises to the secular world what God alone does for us on a spiritual level—similar to Beats, God cancels out the external noise making claims over our lives and makes it mute to our heart, soul, mind and strength while He speaks good words over us.

Do you have toxic people in your life? Are you involved in difficult relationships or impossible circumstances? If so, I’m certain you need to hear words of truth and encouragement.

Here is some good medicine for reprogramming the negative thoughts, or tapes, in your head. Don’t consider or believe the lies you have heard. Place the Beats headphones over your ears and listen to the declaration below. Memorize the words so you can speak truth over yourself when toxic opinions, hurtful words, or the out right lies of other people attempt to take over your thought life.

This truth applies to both women and men.

Beth Moore, Living Proof Live, September 2014
Beth Moore, Living Proof Live, September 2014

Click here to download this song to your computer from the Living Proof blog.

Let me leave you today with personalized scriptures to pray out loud over yourself or your situation.

How precious to me are your thoughts, God!
    How vast is the sum of them! Psalm 139:17 (NIV)

I demolish arguments and every pretension that sets itself up against the knowledge of God, and I take captive every thought to make it obedient to Christ. 2 Corinthians 10:5 (NIV)

Thank you, Jesus, that Your yoke is easy and Your burden is light. Matthew 11:30 (NIV)

… whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable—if anything is excellent or praiseworthy—I will think about such things. Philippians 4:8 (NIV)

Thank  you, Lord. You are my strength and my defense;
    You have become my victory. Psalm 118:14

Tell the ungodly opinions and beliefs to take the issue to your Heavenly Father and to vanish from you in the name of Jesus!

Father, Your word says, “You will keep in perfect peace
    those whose minds are steadfast,
    because they trust in you.” Thank you. I receive Your peace. Isaiah 26:3 (NIV)