Sisters For Sunshine

Receive God's Warm Love Through Reflection

Weekly Song: Steady My Heart

Kari Jobe’s song Steady My Heart is an empowering worship song! God is here with you, bringing you security and comfort, healing and love. He gives balance in your heart and in your life. Trust in him.

Wish it could be easy, Why is life so messy? Why is pain a part of us?
There are days I feel like, Nothing ever goes right, Sometimes it just hurts so much

But You’re here, You’re real
I know I can trust You

Chorus:
Even when it hurts, Even when it’s hard, Even when it all just falls apart
I will run to You, ‘Cause I know that You are, Lover of my soul
Healer of my scars, You steady my heart [x2]

I’m not gonna worry, I know that You’ve got me, Right inside the palm of your hand
Each and every moment, What’s good and what gets broken, Happens just the way You plan

You are here, You’re real
I know I can trust You

Chorus

And I will run to You, And find refuge in Your arms
And I will sing to You, ‘Cause of everything You are

You steady my heart [x2]
Chorus

I’m not gonna worry, I know that you’ve got me, Right inside the palm of your hand

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Blessings and offerings

Yesterday’s bible readings at mass covered the popular story of the five loaves and two fishes that ended up feeding thousands, as well as a similar story in 2 Kings about twenty barley loaves feeding a hundred.

“A man came from Baal-shalishah bringing to Elisha, the man of God, twenty barley loaves made from the firstfruits, and fresh grain in the ear. Elisha said, “Give it to the people to eat.” But his servant objected, “How can I set this before a hundred people?” Elisha insisted, “Give it to the people to eat.” “For thus says the LORD, ‘They shall eat and there shall be some left over.’” And when they had eaten, there was some left over, as the LORD had said.” – 2 Kings 4:42-44

“One of his disciples, Andrew, the brother of Simon Peter, said to him, “There is a boy here who has five barley loaves and two fish; but what good are these for so many?” Jesus said, “Have the people recline.” Now there was a great deal of grass in that place. So the men reclined, about five thousand in number. Then Jesus took the loaves, gave thanks, and distributed them to those who were reclining, and also as much of the fish as they wanted. When they had had their fill, he said to his disciples, “Gather the fragments left over, so that nothing will be wasted.” So they collected them, and filled twelve wicker baskets with fragments from the five barley loavesthat had been more than they could eat…” – John 6:8-13

It’s so amazing to think that this small amount of food could feed the people more than enough!

God reminds us that He alone provides for all our needs. He nourishes us and blesses us more than we can imagine. 

What are some daily blessings that you see in your life, from God? How does He “feed” your soul?

Our priest also reminded us that though these stories talk about God giving us enough to sustain us, blessing us, it also suggests what we need to do on our part. We accept His blessings, yes, but we also need to think about how we can share in His blessings. What can we offer? 

It’s like a give and take. The blessings we receive need to go out and be shared as offerings to God, to help out His people. There’s always more than you think that can be shared!

Lord, thank You for giving me enough. You provide for all that I need and more. Please help me to see opportunities around me to share Your blessings with others. Help me to give out some of what You gave me, in the hopes that other people may see Your goodness and be nourished as well. Amen.

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Recycled Post: Hand-picked by God

This post comes from April 2014:

“You have searched me, Lord,and you know me. You know when I sit and when I rise; you perceive my thoughts from afar. You discern my going out and my lying down; you are familiar with all my ways. Before a word is on my tongue you, Lord, know it completely. You hem me in behind and before, and you lay your hand upon me. Such knowledge is too wonderful for me, too lofty for me to attain.

Where can I go from your Spirit? Where can I flee from your presence? If I go up to the heavens, you are there; if I make my bed in the depths, you are there. If I rise on the wings of the dawn, if I settle on the far side of the sea, even there your hand will guide me, your right hand will hold me fast. If I say, “Surely the darkness will hide me and the light become night around me,” even the darkness will not be dark to you; the night will shine like the day, for darkness is as light to you.

For you created my inmost being; you knit me together in my mother’s womb. I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made; your works are wonderful, I know that full well. My frame was not hidden from you when I was made in the secret place, when I was woven together in the depths of the earth. Your eyes saw my unformed body; all the days ordained for me were written in your book before one of them came to be.” – Psalm 139:1-16

God has hand-picked us and intimately created us.

Before we even are born, God knows us. It is so hard to even know who I am sometimes, hard to completely accept myself, and here we see that God loves everything about us and knows exactly, every detail, what we will do and who we are.

We are hand-picked by God to live a special life like no other. He plans everything, and stays with us through the trials and triumphs. Sometimes, we think God may not be as present in tough times, but remember that He is there.

God knows our strengths, our weaknesses, our quirks. He loves us as we are. That is a beautiful thing to think about! I am in awe at how much God delights in me, loves all of me. And I can call on Him at any time, because He has chosen to stay with me always.

Remember that God is all-knowing. Nothing is an accident. Everything is all for His purpose for you, and God can see everything about you, scars and all.

Prayer:

Lord, thank you for choosing me before I was even born. You handpicked me just because you love me. You have all the details under control and am writing my special story. I pray that I may embrace who I am and live the life you’ve called me to. Amen.

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Weekly Prayer: For those who are grieving

This week there have been a few community members who’ve passed away, as well as my former classmate’s mother who passed away from cervical cancer at a young age of 59. It’s hard to understand death, especially when it happens to someone young. We can only trust in God during these times – He is right – and we should have peace with Him. I pray for comfort and healing for those family and friends who’ve lost a loved one:

Father, I pray for those in my community who are grieving.

They’re hurting for many reasons, and I ask You to help them through this season of loss. I reach out to You, the Father of compassion and the Source of every comfort, asking You to touch them with Your unfailing love and kindness. Be their God who comforts them as they’re going through their struggles, and bring them through the tough things ahead. Come alongside them in their pain, and strengthen them so they’ll one day be able to help others who face the same struggles. (2 Corinthians 1:3–4; Psalm 33:22; 1 Samuel 20:14a)

You’re close to people whose hearts are breaking, those who are discouraged and have given up hope. May You who see their troubles and grief respond when they cry out. (Psalm 34:18; 10:14a, 17)

When they’re hurting, help them find their joy in You, for it’s Your joy that will be their strength. Help them to trust You as their God of hope. Fill them with Your joy, peace, and hope by the power of the Holy Spirit. Help them experience the love, joy, and peace that are the results of His life in them, no matter what they’re going through. (Nehemiah 8:10b; Romans 15:13; Galatians 5:22)

May they sense Your presence in this hour of need. In Jesus’ name, Amen.

“Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of compassion and the God of all comfort, who comforts us in all our troubles, so that we can comfort those in any trouble with the comfort we ourselves receive from God.” – 2 Corinthians 1:3–4

May your unfailing love be with us, Lord even as we put our hope in you.” – Psalm 33:22

“But show me unfailing kindness like the Lord’s kindness as long as I live, so that I may not be killed…” – 1 Samuel 20:14a

The Lord is close to the brokenhearted and saves those who are crushed in spirit.” – Psalm 34:18

But you, God, see the trouble of the afflicted; you consider their grief and take it in hand. The victims commit themselves to you; you are the helper of the fatherless. You, Lord, hear the desire of the afflicted; you encourage them, and you listen to their cry.” – Psalm 10:14a, 17

“Nehemiah said, “Go and enjoy choice food and sweet drinks, and send some to those who have nothing prepared. This day is holy to our Lord. Do not grieve, for the joy of the Lord is your strength.” ” – Nehemiah 8:10b

“May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace as you trust in him, so that you may overflow with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit.” – Romans 15:13

“But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, forbearance, kindness, goodness, faithfulness…” – Galatians 5:22

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Weekly Song: Strong (Cinderella)

Disney has touched so many hearts with their movies. Disney movies aren’t just for kids! The messages and magic will make anyone smile and sing along. I love how they have been recently converting animated classics into real life versions. Cinderella was a beautiful rendition of the classic – can you believe the original was made in 1950? This real life one portrayed the innocence and beauty of Cinderella so well. I loved all the characters and actors, and the magic was still there! I previously wrote about the Cinderella moive back in March, but wanted to touch over one of the end credit songs and reiterate the message again. One of the theme songs at the end of the credits was sung by Sonna Rele, “Strong“. Sonna describes the meaning of the song to be “about personal strength, belief in yourself and the importance of having courage and kindness in your heart,” and went on to say “It’s a beautiful song that embodies the core values of the movie and I feel very proud to be a part of it.” To reiterate the message of the movie, I thought that this article here had a good analysis, discussing the core message and the song’s meaning (though please forgive them on some grammatical errrors/writing).

“The movie gives us an important message, ‘Where there is kindness, there is goodness and where there is goodness, there is magic.’ …Cinderella tackles so many situations in her life with grace, patience and poise….Despite all the evil treatment, our hero Cinderella does not victimize herself, she does her best to help herself, sings, keeps cheerful, etc…”

Sonna’s song Strong reminds us that we need to keep our spirits high, stay strong, and do the best we can for ourselves, doing what we think is good and right no matter what/who tries to get in our way. Take charge and embrace your life!

STRONG, Sonna Rele: In a perfect storybook, the world is brave and good A hero takes your hand, a sweet love will follow But life’s a different game, the sorrow and the pain Only you can change your world tomorrow Let your smile light up the sky Keep your spirit soaring high Chorus: Trust in your heart and your sun shines forever and ever Hold fast to kindness, your light shines forever and ever I believe in you and me We are strong When ‘once upon a time,’ in stories and in rhyme A moment you can shine and wear your own crown Be the one that rescues you Through the clouds, you’ll see the blue Chorus A bird all alone on the wing Can still be strong and sing Sing Chorus

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Recycled Post: Making Mistakes

Today’s recycled post comes from March 2014:

“…forgetting what lies behind and straining forward to what lies ahead…” -Philippians 4:13
“Cast your burden on the Lord and He will sustain you…” -Psalm 55:22
“If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness.” -1 John 1:9

Do you dwell on other people’s mistakes, or are you often harder on yourself?

When I make a mistake, I tend to dwell on it too much. I wish I acted differently. I overthink other scenarios of how I should have handled it, and I feel guilty, embarrassed, ashamed, less confident, and disappointed.

It takes courage to look at a mistake and move forward rather than dwell on that past error. We need to learn from the mistake and remember how to act next time. We especially need to let go of such high expectations and be kinder to ourselves. Sometimes we are our own worst critic.

God tells us to be still, to hand over our worries and mistakes to Him. May we find comfort and strength in God, and let Him only be the one to fix everything. He’s the only one that can heal us and forgive us. Ask for His forgiveness today!

Womenworking.com says this about mistakes and moving forward:

“As gracious as we may be to others, we often forget to give that to ourselves. Maybe we haven’t been taught how to do this.  But what we don’t know, we can teach ourselves. 

Here are a few ways I have learned to give to myself:

-Acknowledge all I do in any one given day. And really take that in.
-Be kind to the little girl within me, like any child, she wants to be loved.
-Not see others as the cause of my problems, but look to myself for what isn’t working in my life.
-Understand my humanity, and the humanity of everyone else on the planet.  When I make mistakes, take responsibility for them and move on.  If I could have done better at the time, I would have.

YOUR MANTRA: I AM WORTHY OF ALL GOOD THINGS AND DESERVE THE BEST.”

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Weekly Prayer: For our Pastors and Church Leaders

Pastors and church leaders have a lot of responsibility with organizing services, planning music and church events, and being there for the community. Let us reflect on all the good the bring to make the church active and healthy. Here’s a prayer for pastors and church leaders for the wisdom and direction needed to lead a church.

Dear God,

I want to lift my pastor and all of the church leaders up to you in prayer. They need Your wisdom and direction for Your church. Please keep them humble and always relying upon You to give them the perfect wisdom and direction that they need. Help them to consider information offered by others and also to come to You in prayer as they evaluate and organize church services.

Remind them of Your servant Solomon, who when he was to become king, prayed only for Your wisdom, and because of his humility, You granted even more than wisdom.

I pray this in Jesus name, Amen.

“So God said to him, “Since you have asked for this and not for long life or wealth for yourself, nor have asked for the death of your enemies but for discernment in administering justice, I will do what you have asked. I will give you a wise and discerning heart, so that there will never have been anyone like you, nor will there ever be. Moreover, I will give you what you have not asked for—both wealth and honor—so that in your lifetime you will have no equal among kings.” “-1 Kings 3:11-13

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Weekly Song: Fight

I recently heard Evynne Hollen’s cover Rachel Platten’s song, Fight, and I loved the powerful words expressed. Fight is about being strong, overcoming those things that brought you down, and starting to fight back!

For me, fighting back means to be more confident in social situations, to be more comfortable with who I am, and to work hard at accomplishing things that I didn’t think would be possible. It’s more of an inner fight, to be stronger internally.

What do these lyrics mean to you?

Fight Song
Like a small boat, On the ocean
Sending big waves, Into motion
Like how a single word, Can make a heart open
I might only have one match, But I can make an explosion

And all those things I didn’t say, Wrecking balls inside my brain
I will scream them loud tonight, Can you hear my voice this time

Chorus:
This is my fight song, Take back my life song
Prove I’m alright song, My power’s turned on
Starting right now I’ll be strong, I’ll play my fight song
And I don’t really care if nobody else believes
‘Cause I’ve still got a lot of fight left in me

Losing friends and I’m chasing sleep, Everybody’s worried about me
In too deep, Say I’m in too deep (in too deep)
And it’s been two years, I miss my home
But there’s a fire burning in my bones, And I still believe
Yeah I still believe

And all those things I didn’t say, Wrecking balls inside my brain
I will scream them loud tonight, Can you hear my voice this time

Chorus

A lot of fight left in me

Like a small boat, On the ocean
Sending big waves, Into motion
Like how a single word, Can make a heart open
I might only have one match, But I can make an explosion

This is my fight song, Take back my life song (Hey!)
Prove I’m alright song, My power’s turned on
Starting right now I’ll be strong (I’ll be strong), I’ll play my fight song
And I don’t really care if nobody else believes
‘Cause I’ve still got a lot of fight left in me
Now I’ve still got a lot of fight left in me

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God loves YOU and ME

God made each of us unique, with different personalities, looks, interests, and opinions. He loves YOU, and He loves ME!

It’s amazing to think that there are trillions of people on the earth, and we all have to live with each other, learn to work with one another, love one another, and tolerate all types of people and beliefs. Sometimes it’s just hard to love myself, let alone other people!

It is a challenge, but to follow God and make the world a better place, we need to focus on including everyone in our circle of love. 

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I hope that each day we wake up and remember that God wants us all to love one another, no matter who we are.

“Here there is not Greek and Jew, circumcised and uncircumcised, barbarian, Scythian, slave, free; but Christ is all, and in all.” -Colossians 3:11

“May the God of endurance and encouragement grant you to live in such harmony with one another, in accord with Christ Jesus, that together you may with one voice glorify the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ. Therefore welcome one another as Christ has welcomed you, for the glory of God.” -Romans 15:5-7

And, most importantly, we should wake up and remember to love ourselves, the special person that God created. We were made by God, made for a purpose, made to use our uniqueness to His advantage!

“You are altogether beautiful, my love; there is no flaw in you.” -Song of Solomon 4:7

“For you formed my inward parts; you knitted me together in my mother’s womb. I praise you, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made. Wonderful are your works; my soul knows it very well.” -Psalm 139:13-14

“So God created man in his own image” -Genesis 1:27

Celebrate and embrace your personality and BE YOU. We were made by His love! Then celebrate and embrace the differences around you. God calls us to love ALL of His children!

This might help you interact with other people that are different than you:

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Recycled Post: Water and Air

This post comes from February 2014:

“I am clean, clear, and refreshed. I sparkle as I drink my life-giving water.” -Dr John Demartini

“Inhale. Exhale. Inhale. Exhale. What a wonderful gift of life. Inhale. Exhale. The beginning and the end. Inhale peace, exhale confusion. Inhale faith, exhale worry. Inhale love, exhale anger. Breath is the gift of grace. As long as we have it, we have the divine opportunity to go it again.” –Iyanla Vanzant

Water and air are necessities for life. Every morning when you wake up, take a deep breath and tell yourself, ‘Good morning, I’m alive and well.’ And when you take a glass of water, doesn’t it quench your thirst and make you feel clean and well?

God is the ultimate necessity for not just living, but living well, living a life of purity, goodness, love, joy, and hope. He gives us His living water and offers us cleansing and forgiveness. And He breathes on us His holiness, His spirit, so that we may no longer live, but have Christ live in us.

Thank you God for making us alive and well, for quenching our inner thirst, for guiding us, even in the little things like helping our bodies breath oxygen!

All is well! I pray for good health in body, mind, and soul.

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Weekly Prayer: Shyness and Insecurity

“If you are insecure, guess what? The rest of the world is, too. Do not overestimate the competition and underestimate yourself. You are better than you think.” – T. Harv Eker

My husband and I both understand each other well because we are both shy and can often doubt our abilities. We talk about shyness and introversion every-once-in-a-while, and how we need to accept who we are but also how we need to work at being more confident. There’s always room for improvement, to overcome insecurities and doubts.

So today I decided to share this quote. I think as a shy person, one of the feelings that I harbor is insecurity and timidness. I often don’t act upon my feelings because of it, and as a result I fall short, when I know I could have done it. If you feel the same way, I hope this prayer will give you more confidence in who you are and will inspire you to act with boldness. You are better than you think!

Dear Heavenly Father,

Your grace is so powerful. Your love is beautiful. Your presence is peaceful. Thank you for today, for giving us time, for giving us precious life to do your will, and for giving us people to love. Sometimes my own skewed perspective of myself hinders me from doing things. I need courage. I need to be less insecure. Please deliver me from my insecurities. Lord, I ask that you help me to view myself as you see me. I pray that I will see myself as valuable, worthy, lovely, and beautiful. I pray for myself and for others who battle insecurities. Be our strength and help us overcome, in Jesus name, AMEN!

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Weekly Song: Bright

Echosmith’s song, “Bright”, is a lovely song about love and how the people you love can make you feel alive and beautiful. I know that my husband, my parents, my sister, and those that I love bring such happiness and light into my life; they help me shine my best.

I think the universe is on my side
Heaven and Earth have finally aligned
Days are good and that’s the way it should be

You sprinkle star dust on my pillow case
It’s like a moonbeam brushed across my face
Nights are good and that’s the way it should be

You make me sing oh, la, la, La
You make a girl go oh oh
I’m in love, love

Chorus:
Did you see that shooting star tonight?

Were you dazzled by the same constellation?

Did you and Jupiter conspire to get me?

I think you and the Moon and Neptune got it right

‘Cause now I’m shining bright
, so bright

Bright, so bright

And I see colors in a different way
You make what doesn’t matter fade to grey
Life is good and that’s the way it should be

You make me sing oh, la, la, la
You make a girl go oh oh
I’m in love, love

Chorus
And I get lost (oh) in your eyes

Chorus

Bright, so bright (repeat)
And I get lost in your eyes tonight

Here’s the “softer” version of their song featuring violinist Lindsey Stirling.

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