Thursday, 17 September 2015

Standing on his promises

It was the summer of 2005. I had just graduated High School, and was on a mission trip in West Virginia with my youth group. We got to witness to the less fortunate, show compassion to the homeless, and grow in God with each other. It was a time in my life that I will never forget.

One particular memory stands out for me at this very moment in my life though. We gathered in the "kitchen" area to do a drama for some folks that had stopped by to be fed, physically and spiritually, when mama K asked me to share a word for these people. I had literally 10 minutes to prepare and I was scared. But I obeyed because I knew she wouldn't have asked me if God had not asked her first.
 So I said God, what am I supposed to say to these people who have lost all hope in life? Who don't know where their next meal will come from, nor do they know where they will sleep tonight. So I ran up to my room and tore open my bible, going through all the scriptures I knew of, NOTHING came to me. I was starting to panic! But then a bookmark fell out of my bible (out of the millions of bookmarks I had in my bible, this one fell out at this moment). It was a graduation gift I got, funnily enough.

I took one look at it and I heard God say THIS is what I want you to speak to these people! So I thanked God for speaking to me and rushed downstairs. I was still scared, but I knew God would give me the words to say and he did. I don't remember what I said, but I will never forget God speaking to me.

This memory came to mind today because I am struggling with my job. I'm struggling with my co worker who doesn't believe in God and is letting the enemy use her to come against me in every way possible. I have anxiety everyday that I have to go to work wondering what will she do to me today? In a constant battle not to burst into tears at the end of a very long day, sometimes even before I open up my email at 7:30 in the a.m. I have anxiety so bad that I am sick to my stomach most mornings.
I have been praying so hard for God to give me a new job, but with no degree or experience, I am stuck. I have been in constant prayer, I've prayed over this lady's desk, I've laid hands on her chair, I've rebuked the devil every morning before I go into work, NOTHING. I have come to a point of just giving up. So I came home today, sick with anxiety and exhaustion and I got out my bible and I prayed harder than ever over this lady. I rebuked the devil so loud, I'm sure my neighbors thought I was a crazy woman.

After I was done I was reading a book my brother got for me and I came across this very same scripture (see above picture)  A peace came over me, as I was reminded of how I was desperately searching for something to say, and God took over with a simple bookmark that fell out of my bible 10 years ago. Who knows if what I said that day to those people ever made a difference, all I know is that I was obedient and now I must be obedient again and remain steadfast in my faith and in his promise, the very same one he had me tell those people about back then, holds very true to my circumstances now.

I don't know where God wants me in the long run. I don't even know if things will change where I am at, but I do know this is just a stepping stone for me. This job is not where God wants me to remain. 

Please pray for me as I go TDY to San Antonio in two weeks for training for my job. (Ironically enough, the headquarters for Human Resources is located in San Antonio;it's also Jose's home town) and who knows, maybe God will open a door there for me, or at least plant a seed for something for the future. I don't know, but I do know God is Sovereign. His plans are to give me hope not anxiety..I will keep following that promise until I get to where I am supposed to be.

Tuesday, 8 September 2015

Battle Cry

I felt you today God, when you woke me up with lungs full of air, waiting to take my first breath of the day that you made just for me.

 I saw you today Jesus, in the passenger seat of all the lost and hurting people that I pass going into work. They have no joy, no smiles cross their sleep filled faces, just sadness and weariness for the day that lies ahead.

I heard you God, while my co worker looked down on me, silently she screamed for love and acceptance, so a smile is what I gave as you reminded me that the meek will inherit the earth. Matthew 5:5

I waited for you God, when my strength and hope were running dry, you showed up with a reminder that Greater is he that is in ME than he who is in the world. 1 John 4:4

I saw you again Jesus in everyone that I passed in the hall today, everyone that stopped by my office, their faces forced to smile, their eyes screaming for help. They walked seemingly alone, never knowing of the savior that walked before them in every step they took.

I needed you God, when I heard something disheartening and discouraging, it gave me anxiety and made me angry. 1 Peter 5:7

I'm still wearing my armor God, the one I suit up with every morning before I leave the house. Ephesians 6:10-18

I felt you God as you confirmed through your word, that everything is going to be ok. Genesis 50:20

I'm waiting on you Father, as you revive my spirit, and renew my strength. Isaiah 40:31

I'm listening for you Jesus, for your command to tell me it's time to fly.

I'm ready God, to go into battle, suited up, and ready to fight. I cannot lose because no weapon formed against me shall prosper. Isaiah 54:17

Here I am God, I worship you as I sit here and revel in your sweet spirit. A peace has come over me, and I know that the battle is not over, but the WAR has been won.

You are my Revival, Jesus on you I wait. I'll lean on your promise. You will renew my strength.
-Lauren Daigle

Saturday, 25 July 2015

Cloudy Days and Sunset Rays

"Clouds come floating into my life, no longer to carry rain or usher storm, but to add color to my sunset sky."
-Rabrindranath Tagore

Today I woke up with hope. I looked out the window and it was a beautiful morning. I told myself, today is going to be a good day. But as the day wore on the sky quickly changed from beautiful and warm, to dark black clouds and a strong chilly wind. Along with it, so changed my mood. I was feeling depressed, hopeless, and numb. A continuation of my yesterday that I had hoped I could have slept off and started fresh. It wasn't so. After I cleaned the house, I crawled my depressed butt back into bed, I planned on staying there until I woke up tomorrow. 
But like he always does, God had other plans. I was just about to doze off when my husband came in and asked me to take a walk with him. So I begrudgingly did. After our walk we went out to eat some chinese and I told him a bit of how I was feeling. He asked me questions and he let me just talk. It really did help, but not quite enough to get me back to my normal self. I still had plans to come home after dinner and crawl into bed until morning.
As we were driving home, the sun was setting and it was beautiful. So I went upstairs to take a picture and to just stare in awe at the beautiful sky, when God spoke to me. He said, "can't you see without the clouds the sunset would not be as beautiful." And I, as always, was humbled. The dark clouds were still in the sky nearest me as they had been throughout the day. But in the distance where the sun was, the clouds lit up with colors from the sun despite them being so dark just moments before. Had I gone straight to bed like I had planned, I never would have heard God speak to me and I wouldn't be writing this blog for you to read.
Today was a bad day for me depression wise. It's been a bad month to be honest with you. But throughout all of it, God has always been there.  I hold on to my faith knowing that God WILL help me through it and when I finally emerge from my dark place, my "sunset" is always beautiful. I know I will always struggle with depression, there is no escaping this awful disease. But I refuse to become a victim of it and I fight every single day to not let it swallow me whole. I am a better person because of my dark clouds. I see things on a deeper level because of my depression. I can appreciate my good days more than the people that have only good days. I can empathize with people who also struggle with depression and in turn, find friendships that I never expected to happen. I can share my story of strength, and I can know the power of a simple smile and a hug. 
Maybe that's why I love sunsets so much. I feel so much peace in knowing that they are always God's sign to me that he is still there, and he is showing me his love and his promises even though I am in a very dark place. 
If you struggle with depression, come find me. We can watch the sunset together knowing that tomorrow will bring a new day, with new hopes and new revelations waiting to be discovered. We just have to take the time to be still and listen. 

My sunset, My promise, My hope in the MIDST of my dark clouds.
Thank you Father.

Thursday, 2 July 2015


    Robin Williams had it right when he said "I used to think the worst thing in life is to end up all alone. It's not. The worst thing in life is to end up with people who make you feel all alone."

I have been experiencing this, this past year, but it all came to a head yesterday.

     A funny thing happens when you are silent. You see less of yourself and more of others. People forget you are even in their presence when you don't talk, but they also fail to remember that you are watching them and in your silence, their true colors scream the loudest. My heart is broken because I thought I mattered, but I saw yesterday that I was nothing more than an obligation.

    You see yesterday was my 28th birthday, something I don't broadcast because my theory is, if you can't celebrate me in my everyday life, then you certainly don't deserve to be in the know about my birthday and celebrate the one day that is mine and mine alone. If you know when my birthday is, then I consider you someone very special in my life that I want to celebrate my day with. Because I know you genuinely care. But I made the mistake of letting the wrong people know when my birthday was and they turned the day into a day about them and made me feel the most alone I have felt in a very long time. (and I've been alone pretty much my whole life)

 I don't consider myself a selfish person, so I didn't think it was too much to ask that I get some recognition. But it was. Comments were made by these people like "Man I really don't want to be here" and "Ok, let's hurry up and get to the house so I can change out of these clothes." And happy birthday and all that junk. And they are the ones that offered to take me to dinner. There was no dessert, there was no singing of Happy Birthday, there was just complaining and rushing. My birthday dinner ended up in tears. Don't worry, none of it was Jose's doing. I'm not telling you this to make you feel sorry for me, because although I am quite hurt, I am ok. I am ok because it was the reality check I so desperately needed. I feel more empowered and more secure about who I am. I have come too far in my journey of self-discovery to have anyone detour me into thinking I am less than the extraordinary human being that I have fought so hard to become.

      Pity party aside, I came home last night to the most beautiful sunset, with beautiful pinks and soft orange undertones, and light rays that reached out for miles. And I was gently reminded that I do matter, to the only one that will ever matter. And in my silence, he hears everything I never have to say. My Jesus, My Savior, My creator, and My confidant. I feel like God was saying Happy Birthday Melissa, I created this sunset just for you. The beauty that you see displayed in front of you is nothing compared to how beautiful you are to me my precious child. And while I watched the sunset, my husband wrapped his arms around me and sang Happy Birthday as tears of joy ran down my face. I was joyful to be so blessed to have ended the day with all the love in the world, in one small bedroom overlooking the west, all wrapped up in my best friend and my Jesus.

     In the end, God had it right when he said this: Fear not, for I am with you; be not dismayed, for I am your God; I will strengthen you, I will help you, I will uphold you with my righteous right hand. Behold, all who are incensed against you shall be put to shame and confounded; those who strive against you shall be as nothing and shall perish. You shall seek those who contend with you, but you shall not find them; those who war against you shall be as nothing at all. For I, the Lord your God, hold your right hand; it is I who say to you, "Fear not, I am the one who helps you."
Isaiah 41:10-13 

 She is more precious than jewels, and nothing you desire can compare with her. Long life is in her right hand; in her left hand are riches and honor. Her ways are ways of pleasantness, and all her paths are peace. She is a tree of life to those who lay hold of her; those who hold her fast are called blessed. Proverbs 3:15-18    

                                                     My Birthday Sunset

The love of my life

Saturday, 16 May 2015

Growing Pains

When life is sweet, say thank you and celebrate.
When life is bitter, say thank you and grow.

I've been doing a lot of growing this past year. Growing up in God, and growing up in myself.
I've had to come to a lot of harsh conclusions that I didn't want to face, like I'll never have friends because people can't handle my honesty. So I've had to get comfortable just being alone with myself ALL the time. It's lonely and it's hard. But I have also become accustomed to the silence, and in the silence, I have found me.
Since I have been here in England, I have lost myself. I have become insecure about my body, insecure about my personality, and insecure about my definition of success. But it was because I kept comparing myself to other people that I came across. Then one day I got fed up. Tired of my mood swings, exhausted from my deep depression episodes, sick of being stressed out because I could not stop caring about what others thought of me. Am I too fat? Am I too sensitive? Am I so ugly that no one wants to be my friend? Am I too pretty that no one wants to be my friend? Will I ever be good enough? Do I talk too much? Am I too quiet? Am I too negative? Am I too stupid for my job? These are real questions that I have been torturing myself with for the past 3 years that I have been over here. Until my wonderful husband said to me with all the love in his heart, "I miss the Melissa you used to be when I first met you." "You used to be so confident, and happy, and independent."

OUCH! Talk about a slap in the face with the truth stick! But it got me thinking, he's right. I've never really cared too much about what other people thought of me because I knew in whom I was rooted in. I will shamefully admit that I have forgotten that I was created in GOD's image. I AM fearfully and wonderfully made.

Who am I to ever say woe is me because no one likes me, woe is me because someone that claims to be my best friend lies to my face because they don't know that I already know the truth, woe is me because I don't have any friends...MELISSA ANN GARCIA! When Jesus was on this earth, he was the most perfect man, yet he remained alone. He was persecuted, condemned, crucified, but did NOTHING to deserve any of it. He washed the feet of Judas after knowing and saying out loud that he would betray him. He shared his bread, his last meal with those that claimed to be his followers, but when it came right down to it, they let him down, they betrayed him, denied him, even after all the miracles he showed them, after choosing them to be his disciples, after all of that he was left alone; to suffer alone, to die FOR THEM.

Why? Because he knew he had a purpose. It wasn't about him, it was about them. All of them that needed him, so they could CHOOSE him and be with him eternally, he did it for them. This earth is temporary, this pain is temporary, this life is temporary. But Jesus...Jesus is ETERNAL. And to live for him and to suffer here on earth for him, I will gladly do. It is NOTHING compared to the sacrifice he made for me. Father, forgive me for my selfishness and my pride. It's not about me God, it's about you. When people lie to me, when people use me, when people hurt me intentionally for their own sick amusement and satisfaction...through my tears, through my pain, I WILL love them anyway. I will love them and be kind anyway, because I might be the only "Jesus" they will ever know.

I will sacrifice my heart so they get to choose salvation or eternal suffering. God created me in his image, he created my heart to be sensitive and caring like his, he created me to cry and show I am weak so I can lean on him to forever be my strength. These people that take and take and take from me, I will let them take because I know my source will never run dry. They take because they run out, I give because they need it. O Father, I understand now and I praise you for my struggles. My heart breaks for those that do not know you. Show me God, show me how to love them like you love me. I pray they only see YOU in all that I do. When they hurt me 20 times, Father, let me forgive them 21 times. Forgive me for my shortcomings, forgive me for making this about me, I am but an extension of you. Use me God for your purpose. In these things I pray Amen.

So if you're reading this and you've ever hurt me, I forgive you. I forgive you because I need God more than I need your approval. I forgive you so my cup will be filled with love so I can share it with you. I love each and every one of you. ALL of you! Thank you for showing me what I'm truly worth by driving me into the arms of my Father every time you brought pain to my life. Because of you, I see that we could all use more of Jesus, and I will be the person to show him to you.