Fake Christianity…

Why are we even paying attention to those who call themselves Christians but ignore what and who Jesus paid attention to? Why do we continue to give credence to those who claim Christ but don’t reflect Christ in their attitude or actions? Why do we allow the amplification of “Christian” voices that spew separation and fear?

“What kind of deal is it to get everything you want but lose yourself? What could you ever trade your soul for?” Matthew 16: 26, MSG

Inhale Peace, Exhale Poverty…
Inhale Passion, Exhale Poverty…
Inhale God’s Promises, Exhale Poverty…
Just Breathe

#JustBreathe
Reflections with Renita

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Home

I’ve now lived in Chicago longer than any place since I started my military career. I thought after 27 years of moving every two to three years, it might be difficult to stay in the same city. But not only have I been in the same city, I’ve spent these last nine (!) years in the same building.

So this last month as summer has lingered and I prepared to move into my own place, I’ve spent my mornings on the roof, enjoying the amazing view and being grateful for having a place to call home.

“Home is where you make it.” ~ Anonymous

Inhale Gratitude, Exhale Entitlement…
Inhale Peace, Exhale Chaos…
Inhale Home, Exhale Loneliness…
Just Breathe

#JustBreathe
Reflections With Renita

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Precious Present

Every anxious thought we have about what might happen, every moment we spend replaying and regretting an action we took or something we didn’t say…every time we give into anger over something done to us that we perceive as negative, we stray away from the precious present.

Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own.” Matthew 6:34, NIV

Inhale Present, Exhale Past…
Inhale Now, Exhale Future…
Inhale Peace, Exhale Frustration…
Just Breathe

#JustBreathe
ReflectionsWithRenita

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Protected

This week, between traveling in traffic and sleeping in a hotel, I experienced insomnia. I felt like I was in a thick fog and found myself moving like the walking dead. And because I was physically tired and mentally drained, I became emotionally exhausted. With my emotional energy depleted, I started to feel sad.

It was a personal manifestation of all I know to be true about holistic health; that a glitch in one system impacts all other systems. So I thank God for spiritual protection and for guiding me to the tools and the pathway to wholeness.

Therefore put on the full armor of God, so that when the day of evil comes, you may be able to stand your ground, and after you have done everything, to stand. Stand firm then, with the belt of truth buckled around your waist, with the breastplate of righteousness in place, and with your feet fitted with the readiness that comes from the gospel of peace. In addition to all this, take up the shield of faith, with which you can extinguish all the flaming arrows of the evil one. Take the helmet of salvation and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God. And pray in the Spirit on all occasions with all kinds of prayers and requests.” Ephesians 6:13-18 MSG

Inhale Protection, Exhale Illusion…
Inhale Peace, Exhale Chaos…
Inhale Prayer, Exhale Uncertainty…
Just Breathe

#JustBreathe
Reflections With Renita

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Perfect Peace

We try so hard to understand what is beyond our comprehension, to explain what we don’t fully understand. What if we just rested in the flow and trusted in the All-Knowing…

You will keep in perfect peace those whose minds are steadfast, because they trust in you.” ~ Isaiah 26:3 NIV

Inhale Peace, Exhale Strain…
Inhale Rest, Exhale Fatigue…
Inhale Trust, Exhale Weariness…
Just Breathe

#JustBreathe
Reflections With Renita

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Vengeance

One of my favorite shows is OWN’s “Greenleaf” which follows the deeds and misdeeds of a family leading a mega-church in the south.

The midseason cliffhanger saw the primary character in a life and death struggle with the show’s primary villain. Her inability to forgive led her to interpret her antagonist’s actions incorrectly, which led to heightened emotions (in this case panic), which led to actions that may lead to results contrary to what she wants.

She has looked for peace in his punishment, but peace can only come through forgiveness…

Then Peter came to Jesus and asked, “Lord, how many times shall I forgive my brother or sister who sins against me? Up to seven times?” Jesus answered, “I tell you, not seven times, but seventy-seven times.” Matthew 18: 21-22, MSG

Inhale Forgiveness, Exhale Punishment…
Inhale Peace, Exhale Revenge…
Inhale Truth, Exhale Vengeance…
Just Breathe

#JustBreathe
Reflections With Renita

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Happy

Never, ever again will you tell me it takes you to make me happy.” ~ Carly and Martina Shipp.

These are some of the lyrics from a song I recently heard called “Make Me Happy.” Now fifteen, the authors, musicians Carly and Martina Shipp, wrote the song when they were thirteen. Watch the video here!

Like a lot of the songs I discovered when I visited their website, it is a call to chose empowerment from two young people who are very clear about who gets to make that choice. And I just marveled at their ability to recognize this powerful concept…they are responsible for their own happiness.

“Happiness depends upon ourselves.” ~ Aristotle

Inhale Clarity, Exhale Confusion…
Inhale Happiness, Exhale Discouragement…
Inhale Peace, Exhale Chaos…
Just Breathe…

#JustBreathe
Reflections With Renita

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Deeply Loved

If only we could see ourselves as God sees us, innocent and blameless, we would stop beating ourselves up, stop projecting our shame onto others, stop hiding in fear. We could be fearlessly vulnerable from a place rooted in conviction and connection and fearlessly loving from the knowledge that we are deeply loved…

We cultivate love when we allow our most vulnerable and powerful selves to be deeply seen and known, and when we honor the spiritual connection that grows from that offering with trust, respect, kindness and affection.” ~ Brené Brown

Inhale Innocence, Exhale Shame…
Inhale Innocence, Exhale Blame…
Inhale Innocence, Exhale Fear…
Just Breathe…

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One Step…

“If I take,
Just one step,
He will do the rest…” Donald Vails

Every version of “The Hero’s Journey” story, features a scene when the hero takes one giant, scary step of faith into the unknown or battles his fear in the face of a tremendous, potentially life-ending threat. In “Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade”, our hero is guided to a deep chasm with no visible way to get to the other side. He calls on his faith, steps out into the abyss… and on to the bridge, which magically appears underneath his foot. crusades1

That’s the kind of courage that can force us forward in the face of fear, the kind of confidence that can compel us to step into what we can’t see… the kind of conviction that we can trust what we know to be true despite evidence to the contrary.

It’s the kind of faith we’re asked to have in order to live the lives we’re called to live.

Inhale Courage, Exhale Doubt…
Inhale Belief, Exhale Doubt…
Inhale Truth, Exhale Doubt…
Just Breathe…

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Choice

We are given free will to make our own choices.
We can choose to believe, or not…
We can choose to love, or not…
We can choose to live in and on purpose, or not.

I’ve made my choices, I’ve done my part and I’m thanking Him for all the rest.

Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.” Philippians 4:6-7 NIV

Inhale Stillness, Exhale Stress…
Inhale Calm, Exhale Chaos…
Inhale Peace, Exhale Chatter…
Just Breathe…

#ReflectionsWithRenita

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