SPIRITUAL DETOX: Week 12, Hope vs. Hopelessness

Has anyone besides me ever felt stuck?  If you have felt stuck, has it ever pushed you to the point of panic?

I have an issue where this can occur physically in me. It is technically called a phobia.

I have claustrophobia! I did not develop it later in life, I knew from a very young age I had it.

I actually knew that I suffered from claustrophobia before I could even put a name to it, let alone a definition. I simply knew that I lost my ever loving mind when someone pulled the covers over my head! 

When my sister’s would be playing and do this to me, I would develop SuperHero strength and kick them off the bed with one thrust of my foot and free myself from the covers in a rage of anxiety and fear!

I had an abnormal reaction to being in an enclosed or narrow place. That is the exact definition of a phobia by the way! 

 After my sister’s ran from the room screaming that I had “erupted,” I found out that my Dad suffered from the same phobia.  My Dad being my Dad, and believing that you must be in control of yourself at all times, decided to teach me how to control my phobia.

He would tell me to relax and breath deeply and think about a favorite place or activity. Then he would place his very large, very strong hand over my face holding me down so I could not move.  

Now, before you run and file a ‘child abuse suit’ against my Dad, I knew that he was doing this to help me. He suffered from the same gripping fear and knew what it felt like. He also knew that maintaining my self-control and focusing on what I could control, AKA: Me, and not on what I could not control, AKA: what was happening to me, I could learn to not fly into a panic and instead of feeling hopeless and stuck, I could have hope in my ability to calm myself through it.

I want to be clear here, this did not cure me! A real phobia, is a real phobia. It is something that by definition is “ABNORMAL!” It is not logical and it does not make sense to anyone not inflicted with it. As a child I made sure not to hide in tight closed spaces when playing ‘hide and seek.’ I never crawled to the end of my sleeping bag at sleepovers, and let’s just say, my sister’s knew never to play the ‘pull the sheets over Lisa’s head game!’  

But as an adult, my phobia reared it’s ugly head when I was taking my children to ‘Breakfast with Santa Claus.’  This was one of my favorite traditions we shared as a family. Macy’s department store put on a yearly ‘Breakfast with Santa Claus’ in their downtown store.

My Mom always gave the grandkids their special Christmas outfits early so they could wear them to the breakfast. We had been out of the country for awhile on the Mission Field, and I was so excited to be home and taking my children to this family tradition!

We pulled into the large multi-level parking garage and entered the elevator marked ‘Macy’s!’ We pushed the button and the doors closed. The elevator moved slowly and then we felt an abrupt jerk! The elevator had come to a stop, but the doors were not opening.

I had my children with me, I needed to maintain self-control! I breathed deeply, told them we would be fine, and looked frantically for the BIG RED EMERGENCY button!

I pushed it, NOTHING! I pushed it again, NOTHING! I pushed it again and again and again, Still NOTHING!

Panic began to set in!  I grabbed for the phone in the elevator but no one picked up!  The store was not open yet. They were opening early for the Breakfast with Santa Claus, and in case you are thinking what I’m thinking right now, there was no need to fear about lack of cell phone coverage, we didn’t have cell phones yet!

My phobia at this point was in full swing. The Big Red Button wasn’t working! The emergency phone wasn’t working! The store was not opening for hours and we were STUCK! I felt completely HOPELESS and had no way out.

I began to breath. To practice the self-control my Dad had taught me years ago. As I did, oxygen returned to my brain, I could think more clearly, and I knew what to do.

PRAY! Ask God to take my HOPELESS situation and restore HOPE to it.

I did, and He did! We still do not know how the door got opened, but it opened!

There is no logical answer for it. The big red button went unanswered, the phone rang and rang and rang with no one on the other end of it, and the store remained closed. However, our elevator door opened after twenty long, excruciating minutes. 

God restored our HOPE after we trusted in His trustworthiness!

Friend, whether you have a phobia like I do or not, we all get STUCK! Getting STUCK makes us feel HOPELESS.

Why am I in this situation again? Why can I not seem to change this situation? Why do I feel tossed about by this situation to the point of sheer HOPELESSNESS?

The answer is, because we are listening to the lie of the enemy and not to the Truth of Jesus!

Lie # 12 – I am hopeless, I can never change.

Truth # 12 – With God’s help I can change. I serve the God of HOPE!

And this HOPE will not lead to disappointment. For we know how dearly God loves us, because He has given us the Holy Spirit to fill our hearts with His love.     Romans 5:5

This Hope is a strong and trustworthy anchor for our souls. It leads us through the curtain into God’s inner sanctuary.”    Hebrews 6:19

Bottom line…We must detox the lie of the enemy that we are HOPELESS!

If we belong to Jesus, He has given us the gift of the Holy Spirit, and we are filled with HOPE!

Paul writes in the book of Romans that our God is the SOURCE of HOPE!  If we “take a deep breath,” maintain our self-control and detox the lie of the enemy and trust in Him, we will overflow with confident HOPE through the power of the Holy Spirit!

I pray that God, the source of HOPE, will fill you completely with joy and peace because you trust in Him. Then you will overflow with confident HOPE through the power of the Holy Spirit.”    Romans 15:13



I am hope filled when I am filled with the Spirit of God!

We all get stuck sometimes and panic can set in quickly. It is what we do at that moment that matters. Do we allow the LIE of the enemy to take root and render us frozen in panic and fear? I AM HOPELESS?

Or, do we breath deeply, speak a prayer, detox the lie, and allow the power of God’s Holy Spirit to fill us with confident HOPE?

The choice is mine, and the choice is yours! 

Speak Truth Love

SPIRITUAL DETOX: Week 11, God cares about me, and my problems.

Do you ever feel like you are one of “those” people?

You know, the ones that are always at the top of every prayer request list. The ones who walk around with their head bowed out of a “poor me” attitude. The ones who seem to have that dark cloud that follows them wherever they go. Even if the sun is out and there is not a cloud in the sky, they carry an umbrella!

The ones who live life with a “cup half empty” attitude, instead of a “cup half full” attitude. 

I feel like that sometimes, and I hate it when I do! I want to be that person who lifts others up. Who shines her joy at all times and who others do not run away from when they see me coming!

But life happens, and this world does not always serve up iced buttercream cupcakes on a silver platter followed by a cappuccino chaser. Alougth, I would love it if it did!

God knows that and He cares! God cares about my problems. The very best part is that He not only cares about my problems, He is right there with me going through them.

Give all your worries and cares to God, for He cares about you.”    I Peter 5:7

Another version uses the word ANXIETY, instead of worries.

Anxiety…sound familiar? Anxiety in our world is at an all time high!  We are not simply treating adults for anxiety these days, we are treating children as well and even animals.

Anxiety is an epidemic in our culture and is raging out of control!

Why, you might ask?

The answer lies in the following verse:

Be alert and of sober mind. Your enemy the devil prowls around like a roaring lion looking for someone to devour.”   1 Peter 5:8

Anxiety is defined as: “Distress or uneasiness of mind caused by fear or danger or misfortune.”


I heard a brilliant Pastor recently preach a message on fear and anxiety! (I happen to be married to him! Great perk!)  He quoted a statistic that over 85% of what we worry about never even happens!

You do the math! That means we are wasting a lot of valuable time with fear, worry and anxiety. Not to mention the myraid of issues and problems that stem from our worry and anxiety!

So you ask HOW? How do we handle fear anxiety and worry? 

We DETOX the lie of the enemy that says, “God helps those who help themselves, He doesn’t care about me and my problems.”

And we live out the TRUTH, that we are to “give all of our worries and cares to God, because He cares about me!”




Lie # 11– God doesn’t want me to bother Him with my problems. God helps those who help themselves.

Truth #11– God cares about me, and my problems.

Detox the LIE by replacing it with God’s Truth! God cares about every single detail of your life my friend. He knows we live in a world full of fear, trouble, struggle and a whole lot of other negatives. He knows that it produces anxiety, worry and stress in us. But our loving, gracious, all-powerful God has provided the antidote! When we look to Him, trust in Him, Pray to Him and give Him our worries, He cares for us and allows us to stand firm in our faith.

Allow God’s TRUTH to be louder in your life as you give Him your cares and feel Him care for you!

Speak Truth Love

SPIRITUAL DETOX: Week 10, God gives me His strength and protection, I am not alone!

The young seventeen year old girl placed her suitcases in the trunk of an old greenish pacer. The pacer would be recalled for it’s make and model just three years later. However, the wide body design would provide a much welcome space for this young girl to sit quietly, wrapped in a comforting blanket her grandmother had made her, and pray silently that God would stay close to her as she made the 48 hour trek across the middle of the United States to the Bible College she would be attending. 

As her suitcases hit the floor of the trunk and the echo of the metal hitting metal as the trunk closed rung in her ears, she gulped as she realized she was now alone for the first time in her life. As the car pulled away from her grandparents driveway, her heart sank just a bit lower than it had as her car, only one week earlier, had pulled out of her driveway at the home she had grown up in from fifth grade through High School graduation.

This was real, it was happening! She was leaving her home and family and driving half way across the country to attend a Bible College where she knew NO ONE except the driver of the car she now found herself in. Looking out the window of that pacer she watched as the hot, cotton fields of Arizona gave way to the red dirt mountains of New Mexico. It was dark now, night had come, but the stars reflected the light that softly lit the carved mountains that began to look more like statues as the car passed one after the other until the first light of dawn appeared. The car stopped for gas and snacks at a truck stop and then continued on through the flat plains of Kansas and Oklahoma finally arriving at it’s destination…Ozark Bible College. 

The girl wasn’t sure she could bring herself to open the car door. She sat there for what seemed like an eternity contemplating the truth that lie ahead of her. She was alone now. She had made this choice believing God was calling her to full-time Christian study. She had left her family that she adored and cherished. Her mom and her sisters, all three of them, had been her life for all of her seventeen years. She missed them so much already that her heart ached with a greater pain than she had ever experienced before! She left her Dad behind also with their relationship being anything but good. She left behind her beloved Northern California with all of it’s natural beauty, it rivers, lakes, streams, mountains, and remarkable trees! She was alone, truly alone in a foreign place. Fear gripped every inch of her being. Somehow, she reached for the door handle and pushed the door open to face her “new normal.” 

She heard that familiar metal sound releasing the metal on metal and opening to reveal her suitcases lying there on the trunk floor. This was real, she was now in Missouri! She pulled her suitcases from the trunk and carried them down the cement walkway leading to ‘Beaver Dorm.’ This would be her “home away from home” now. She entered room 33 and was greeted by the cutest little texan gal with a strong southern drawl! “Hi there, my name is Lexi, what’s yours?” “Lisa,” I answered, “Hi.” She continued talking in that adorable southern accent, but her words began to blend together as my mind spun out of control.

What have I done? Me, the one voted, “Least likely to leave home,” in her High School yearbook! Me, the traditionalist that held family traditions right up there with the 10 commandments! Me, the one who prioritized God first and family next!


Was it too late to race back to that ugly, green pacer and put it in reverse and go HOME?Everything in me cried for comfort, normalcy and the known. I was faced with exactly the opposite, and I was ALONE!

Somewhere in my panicked state my cute little texan roommate had exited. I didn’t see her go or remember her leaving but my eyes were now drawn to her reentering our dorm room.

She stretched out her hand toward me and handed me a small 3 x 3 inch plaque. Through my blurry, confused eyes I made out the reference at the bottom, Philippians 4:13!

She then placed her two hands on my two shoulders and prayed, “Dear God, please let Lisa know that she can do anything in your strength. Amen!”

Then she left the room again. A quiet strength filled my body, from the top of my head to the bottom of my toes, I suddenly knew I was not alone. Not here in that dorm room hundreds of miles away from my family and home, and not any moment of any day since!

I can do all things through Christ who gives me strength.” Philippians 4:13 (NAS)

This became my Life’s verse. From that day forward I felt God’s presence filling me with His strength and His protection. That day I replaced the lie of the enemy that I was alone, that I had to be self-sufficient and “pull myself up by my own bootstraps.” NO, God was with me wherever I was. He was my strength and He would protect me.

Do you struggle with loneliness or fear? Do you struggle with inadequacy believing you have to do it on your own? Replace that LIE with God’s TRUTH my friend.

LIE #10 – I have to be self-sufficient and I am alone.

TRUTH #10 – God gives me His strength and protection, I am not alone!

But He said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ’s power may rest on me.”  II Corinthians 12:9

When you are “not enough”, He is MORE THAN ENOUGH!

When you are weak, He is STRONG!

When you are lonely, He is your COMFORTER!

When you are afraid, He is SUFFICIENT!

His power is perfected in our weakness! 




As I write these words and close this Blog post, I am confident that the God who spoke those words of TRUTH over me 41 years ago and has faithfully worked them in my life regardless of my circumstances, will do the very same for you!

You too, My Friend, “can do all things through Christ who strengthens you!” Amen!

Speak Truth Love

SPIRITUAL DETOX: WEEK 9, I have a future, and I am useful in God’s kingdom!

Today’s LIE is one I find myself having to DETOX over and over and over again!

We shared last week about the lie of being UNQUALIFIED. The feeling that we are “not good enough.” This week we are talking about the LIE that I believe follows the LIE of feeling UNQUALIFIED, or at least it does in my life!

I, by the grace of God, shake the LIE of feeling unqualified, and as soon as I do the next lie creeps into my thinking…

I am not useful in God’s Kingdom. I do not have a future in this life.

Sure, I have an eternal future. I know that Jesus Christ is the One and Only Son of God. I know that God sent Him to die for my sins. I know that He died on the cross and that His shed blood covers my sin, and brings me into a right relationship with God. I know that because Jesus died for me, I will live forever with Him in HEAVEN, some day…but do I have a future here on this earth now?

The answer is YES, I do! I have a future! God desires to use me and has plans for me!

For I know the plans I have for you,” declares The Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.”  Jeremiah 29:11

This verse is a popular one and can be taken out of context. It can be the “Go To, Genie in a Bottle,” if you will. The verse that we tend to quote when we make a decision to make a change, or not make a change. To say Yes to something, or No to something. To basically do something we want to do, or not do something we do not want to do.

However, we need to remember the context in which Jeremiah is speaking these words. This verse is Jeremiah speaking to an exciled group of God’s people in Babylon! He is telling them that they are going to be in exile for 70 years, but that they are to still see their place in God’s kingdom work as vital and important! They are to put down roots, they are to have godly marriages and to raise a godly heritage! The promise that God is with them and will continue to bless them and bring them a future with hope and purpose, is for all of them as a group of believers!  The assurance that God is with them no matter what happens and the Truth that God wants only good for all of His people, is the heart of this verse.

So, in case you think, like I often tend to do, that God has no future for you in the earthly work for His Kingdom, look at this list from God’s Word, that keeps company with you and I!

*Abraham was too old, but God used Him in His earthly kingdom work as the father of a great nation!

*Moses was a murderer who stuttered and stammered all over his words, but God used him to rescue His people from slavery!

*Rahab was a prostitute who God used to hide His spies, and from her lineage came Jesus Christ Himself!

*David was a liar and a murderer, but God used Him as one of the greatest leaders of all time and called him, “A man after His own heart!”

*Jonah was a coward who tried to run away from God, but God chased after him and used him to proclaim His message of Truth to a desperate people!

*Peter denied even knowing God, but God restored him and made him the “Rock” upon which He built His church!

*Timothy was young, but God used him mightily to teach and train His people and God filled him with His wisdom!

LIE # 9– I am not useful to God in His kingdom work here on earth!

TRUTH # 9– I have a future! I am useful in God’s kingdom!

Being confident of this, that He who began a good work in you will carry it on to completion until the day of Christ Jesus.”               Philippians 1:6

Friends, until Jesus Himself returns, GOD HAS “WORK” for us to carry on with!

DETOX the LIE! Do not allow the enemy to whisper his poison in your ear. The enemy who wants to thwart the work of God! Who uses any thing he can twist and manipulate to cause us to deny the TRUTH of God!

Speak God’s Truth over your life and watch how He will use you for His kingdom work.

You have a future! You are useful in God’s Kingdom! Ask Him today what He has for you to do.

Paul goes on in the book of Philippians to tell us that we must forget the past and look ahead to the future!

Forgetting the past and looking forward to what lies ahead, I press on to reach the end of the race and receive the heavenly prize for which God, through Christ Jesus, is calling us.”      Philippians 3:13-14

The end of the “race” here my friends, is the end of our earthly lives. The “prize” is Heaven and life eternally there with God and Christ Jesus. Paul is urging us to “PRESS ON,” to not give up running our race here on earth. To work hard at the future God has given us while we are still here!  Then, when we have run that race, we will receive the prize of eternal life in heaven!

It is a LIE that you do not have a future. It is a lie that you are not valuable to God’s kingdom work here on earth!



I have a future and am useful in God’s kingdom!

You have a future and a vital role to play. So DETOX the Lie, hold firm to the TRUTH, and “press on,” to run your race here well!

Together we can do it! The beauty of God’s plan is that we were created to build a community and run this race together!  


Speak Truth Love


Last year my phone rang, I picked it up with no expectation, just a friendly conversation.

I answered the caller in my typical, high pitched, happy voice, “Hi, how are you?”

The caller on the other end answered respectfully, but not with the amount of enthusiasm I expected. Obviously, something else was on his mind, and he was anxious to cut through the pleasantries.

He got right down to it with his next statement, “A job opening has presented itself, and I believe you are right for it.”

I froze right there and then! I should have responded with the correct “christian” answer, “I will pray about it.”

But something took me over and I blurted out, “I am not the one!”

I didn’t take time to pray, I didn’t take time to stop and think about it, I didn’t even let him explain what the job position was. I was simply overtaken by a horrible feeling of being UNQUALIFIED!

Me, on staff at a church? Oh, No!

I have been in ministry for over 30 years alongside my husband. I have seen what my husband has gone through and I have felt the stinging pain of rejection and negative comments way too many times. I am unqualified! I am not enough!

I have served overseas and have been criticized for the way I dress, raise my children and cook. I AM UNQUALIFIED!

I have taught Bible Studies and have been rebuked for being a woman and for my style.


I have lead small(and large), groups with my husband and have been told they are non-essential. I AM UNQUALIFIED!

My list is much longer, but you get my point.

God was calling me to a position in His church and because of past hurt, pain and rejection, I was rendering myself UNQUALIFIED, before I even bowed my knee to Him to ask for His plan.

Have you been rendered UNQUALIFIED by the church or by the world around you? If so, that is not God’s voice you are listening to.

That is the lie of the enemy!

God’s Truth says YOU ARE GIFTED BY GOD! You can and will accomplish great things through Him and the power of the Holy Spirit living in you!



A spiritual gift is given to each of us so we can help each other.

I Corinthians 12:7

Very truly I tell you, whoever believes in me will do the works I have been doing, and they will do even greater things than these, because I am going to the Father.

John 14:12

After coming to my “spiritual” senses and praying through the next two days, God affirmed in me that I am qualified, because HE equips me!




I LOVE my job at church and I thank God for gifting and qualifying me!

Detox one of satan’s greatest lies friends, that of being unqualified.

He uses past hurts, pains and rejections to render us defeated!

Replace the lie with God’s Truth, YOU ARE GIFTED AND QUALIFIED! Allow Jesus to render you QUALIFIED!

Speak Truth Love

SPIRITUAL DETOX: WEEK 7, I am of matchless value!

Identity and Worth-are there two greater values in life?

Identity is defined as; “the state or fact of being oneself, and not another.”

Do you realize the FREEDOM in this definition?

This is not defining what you should be, what you should do or how you should do it!

No! Identity is clearly defined as YOUR state of being YOURSELF!

The problem is, we let the other little word, WORTH, get in the way and steel away our FREEDOM of being ourselves.

Worth is defined as many things, my favorite definition is; “excellence of character or quality as commanding esteem.”

Friends, so often we get caught up in the other definitions of WORTH…

“usefulness and importance…”

“wealth, riches, property or possessions…”

“good or important enough to justify…”

Now, these definitions are true in part, they are just not whole or complete until you add a clarifying piece to them. 

Who is it or what is it that defines the WORTH?

As believers in Jesus Christ, there is only one clarifying piece to determine our WORTH, that is the person of Jesus Christ!

This is what He says about you…

You are His child!

But to all who believed Him and accepted Him, He gave the right to become children of God.”                                                                                                   John 1:12

He has adopted you and brought you to Himself! You belong to Him!

God decided in advance to adopt us into His own family by bringing us to Himself through Jesus Christ.”                                                                                     Ephesians 1:5

You are a daughter or son of The King! You are chosen, selected, adopted and made family by The King of Kings Himself.

Truth Bomb


Your identity and worth is found in Him and Him alone!

So stop defining your worth by how much you do, what you do, or how well you do it. Begin to realize that your identity is in Christ, and because of that your worth is PRICELESS, LIMITLESS, MATCHLESS!

Lie #7 – I am worthless!

TRUTH #7 – I am of matchless value!

Detox the Lie and speak God’s Truth over your life!

Your identity is in Christ and Your Worth is Priceless!

Speak Truth Love

SPIRITUAL DETOX: Week 6, God is close to me!


Have you ever taken a hike, bike ride or a walk and realized that you had gone too far?

I have! My husband and I had just moved to Northern California from Southern California and were excited to explore the many hiking trails in our new home.

We selected a beautiful trail that began at the ocean near Bodega Bay. The trail was clearly marked and looked like it would be a nice 6 1/2 miles. We parked our car at the trail head and began the steep first mile of the hike. There was quite a bit of huffing and puffing (mostly on my part), as we reached the top of that first mile peak. The trail leveled out after that and we walked along at a nice, easy pace. As we hit the 3 1/2 mile mark, it looked as if we were in the middle of nowhere. We were up very high, not even close to ocean level, and there was dry brush all around us. The coolness of the ocean air was gone, and the sun was hot!

We could see no signs of the trail ending, and there was no where to go but forward. The hours rolled on and eventually the trail turned downward and ended in a cool redwood forest. It was the completion of 6 1/2 miles and we were stuck! I realized in that moment that we had GONE TOO FAR!

Instead of turning around at the half-way point and hiking back to our car. We had GONE TOO FAR, hiked 6 1/2 miles, and found ourselves carless, and having to face the 6 1/2 mile hike back to our car! 

Have you ever been there? Have you gotten yourself further and further away from God, and instead of CALLING out to Him and allowing Him to come near, you just keep going further and further away?




You are never too far from God! You may feel like God is not near. You may struggle to gain or regain that intimate oneness that is possible between you and God. You may even feel that God has “left the building,” but The Truth is, God is near to you if you call out to Him!

The Lord is near to all who call on Him, to all who call on Him in Truth.                                                                                                                   Psalm 145:18

If you have called on God and told Him you believe that He is The One True God, and you believe in His One and Only Son Jesus Christ as your personal Lord and Savior, then GOD IS NEAR TO YOU!

Are you struggling to believe that God cares enough to be near to you when you do not necessarily deserve His presence?

Friends, I’ve been there. But the Truth is, the God of the universe does not stay near to you because you “deserve” it, or your behavior dictates it! God stays near to you because He passionately loves you! God’s character of Love deems us worthy even when our behavior does not.

Do not let the lie of the enemy penetrate your mind and heart and keep you away from your loving God!

LIE #6: I am alone! God is not near!

TRUTH #6: God is close to me!

True, our sin did once separate us from God, but when we chose God, He chose us! And, because He is God, He will never leave us. He is always close!

Once you were far away from God, but now you have been brought near to Him through the blood of Christ.”                                                         Ephesians 2:13

If you have believed the lie of the enemy, and allowed yourself to wander away from God’s presence, DETOX THE LIE! CALL OUT TO HIM! He is close and He will come near to you!

Happy Mid-Summer Friends!

Stay the course. Continue to detox the old lies and replace them with the Truth.

God’s Word is the Truth!

Speak Truth Love