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Thoughts and Ideas

Free Book Promotion

From October 26-30, 2020, I’ll be running a free book promotion for my Hoarding book. It’s a subject that has brought me decades of shame, but I’m bringing it into the light because if we keep hiding our weaknesses, we aren’t fulfilling the scriptural mandate to “boast about” our weaknesses, “that the power of Christ may dwell in [us].” I want to live out this scripture. I’m boasting about my weakness!

I’m a recovering hoarder. I fall off the wagon occasionally, and it hurts — a lot. I hate being less than excellent at what I do, so when I begin to fixate on how poor my domestic skills are, I simply quit trying. That’s a bad idea, isn’t it? So check out my little mini-book of quick and easy instructions to begin to turn it all around. It’s a very limited, practical message. I think it will bless anyone who struggles with giving up hoarding, collecting, or stockpiling stuff that is keeping them from fully living their lives.

The Hoarder’s Guide to Getting through Today

Remember, it’s Monday through Friday, from October 26 – 30 that it will be free. Once you purchase it on any of those days, it’s free for you forever. (If you don’t have a Kindle device, buy it anyway. I will explain how to use the app without a Kindle device in an upcoming blog/YouTube video tutorial.)

Categories
Thoughts and Ideas

Blog is such an ugly word

I don’t know who created it, but it sounds so very blah. I would have called it digijournal or something equally multi-syllabic, considering all that it can be. A blog isn’t just a place to write. It opens up the reader’s personality to you, and it makes a friend, albeit an unknown one. I like blogs, and they’re how I’ve gotten to know and love some very precious people.

Anyway, that’s it for now. Nope. No theme. No, not a single moral of the story. Just a quit paragraph or two. Not much of a blog post, really. lol. I’ll get better at it. I promise.

Just kidding. You want to know a random fact about me? My grandparents had a dog named Linda. That’s my first name, but when I moved in with them at a year and a half, they decided that I was going to have to be the one who got a new name. They began calling me Stephanie right then and there, and it’s why I’m known as Stephanie Orsini to this day. When I asked, somewhat indignantly, why they would switch my name and not the dog’s, I was told that they assumed I was the one with the higher IQ. Oh, boy, they got me there!

See? You learn all about people on these bloggy things.

Categories
Thoughts and Ideas

Chosen and Loved

Check out this bible verse.

“Every branch in Me that does not produce fruit He removes, and He prunes every branch that produces fruit so that it will produce more fruit. You did not choose Me, but I chose you. I appointed you that you should go out and produce fruit and that your fruit should remain, so that whatever you ask the Father in My name, He will give you.” (John 15:2‭, ‬16 HCSB)

This means something special to me. Of course, I’m excited that God promises to answer our prayers. Hooray! This is good news. But there’s a different view we can take of this Bible verse. Let’s take the focus off of what it tells us that we can do through Christ, and instead, let’s take a moment to think about who he says we are.

According to this verse, God isn’t just working with volunteers. When you have volunteer efforts, you Vann offer expect low grade results. “Beggars can’t be choosers,” we often say. But he didn’t wait around for someone to reluctantly raise their hands and volunteer to join him. Instead, he deliberately searched for the people he wanted. He chose us. He chose you.

As the chose chosen few, we can trust that we’re designed to do quality work. Because he selected is with great care, even with all our flaws, God knows we’re going to really give a great outcome. But here’s the catch. It’s not because of what we are capable of, and he didn’t consider our past as proof of what we can do. he’s not impressed by what we’ve done. No, our success is guaranteed because of who he is.

God has all power, all knowledge, all ability. He’s the greatest and the best. He’s good. And he chose us! Isn’t that amazing?

He’s also kind, compassionate, and loving. Unlike other leaders, he’s more interested in giving us his love than in measuring the outcome of our efforts. I feel this deeply and personally. That world around us judges us by our successes, but he judges us by his grace. Like a baby receives love long before it shows any potential, God loved us before we did any good works.

I just love him. If you love him, just tell him that.

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Categories
Thoughts and Ideas

Here am I. Send someone else.

I’ve literally prayed that prayer.

Yes, I know that’s awful. I remember the verse that states that he who puts his hand to the plow and turns back isn’t worthy of God. I get it. I understand so much. But my estimation of how effective I can be as a vessel of honor to God… Well, let’s just say that I believed for a long time that I was God’s only mistake.

I am tired today. I took on more than I could handle and I’m way behind. I feel like a failure. And I’m constantly being reminded that any success I’ve had lately isn’t mine. It’s been all a series of dumb luck events combined with people taking up the slack for me. I’m ineffective. I’m poor. I’m weak. I’m a blowhard who can’t back up her words. In short, all my righteousness is like filthy rags. I am nothing.

The good news for me is that your righteousness is also filthy rags. Not because you’re bad. It’s because everyone’s righteousness looks unacceptable to God. None of us has what it takes. That kinda levels the playing field, doesn’t it? It does! And I’m so glad about that.

I’ve got a mission waiting for me tomorrow. I’m going to have a lot of new things to do. And when I do them, I’m going to be joyful because I’m going to findmy success in Christ’s gracious love for me. Join me. Believe, like I do, that it’s by his grace by faith that we’re saved, and we never could earn it. Rest in that beautiful reality. God loves you. He can carry you through.

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