Believer's Battles

The Importance Of Self-reflection…

Well it has been quite a while Ladies and Gents. Amongst the uni exams, holidays, working all hours and generally doing life, I have really felt uneasy because I haven’t posted in so long!

Within such a busy time in my life, I have realised that I have run around so much and have not processed events that have happened. Sometimes you can be too busy for your own good:

‘In vain you rise early and stay up late, toiling for food to eat— for he grants sleep to those he loves.’
Psalm 127:2

I needed to sit down and really think about the past few months. Process and self-reflect. I realised there is difference between the two.

Processing to me would mean you sit down and think about what you’re going through currently or what you went through and the effects. How an external effects the internal. A lot like David did when he cried out to God in the moments of his down fall.

Self-reflection however is when we look at experiences, events or a time period and assess the internal.
it is defined as serious thought about one’s character and actions.
We usually ask ourselves a lot of questions in self-reflection, however in process you usually go through a timeline of events and consider what has happened. Paul is a fantastic example of someone who self-reflected.

Let’s speak in real terms.

I went to get a cheeky Nandos with some good friends of mine a couple of weeks ago. It was lovely to see them all again whilst enjoying my extra hot chicken with extra hot sauce (cannot get anything less!)
To add to the silence created by the munching of very hungry people;  I posed a question that required some self-reflection:
‘ Guys, what would you say would be the biggest change in you this year?’

A lot of people do not self-reflect. This worries me; why?

In a world that is moving so fast and time is running away, how do we measure true change?
In a world that puts you in boxes, how do you identify your uniqueness?
In a world where we are told to conform how do you stand out?

Delve into self.

As believers in the perfect example ever of how to conduct ourselves; we have a standard to uphold. People are not far off when they say: ‘ What would Jesus do?’
If we asked ourselves that after every interaction with people we would realise how we don’t naturally do what is best. However there are always steps to rectify situations that get a bit OTT.

Another personal anecdote (it’s been a long week lol)…

I recently had a disagreement with a friend over something quite silly. It was an over-the-top reaction to a minor issue. We talked it out and it was put to bed.
However I did a self-reflect within my JesusTime that night and I had to ask these questions:
What made you react that way?
Are there any underlining issues?
What else going on within you contributed to the situation?

These questions brought up more than the situation and I know the steps to take in order to promote healing to both parties now. Especially when there is a disagreement, self-reflection is needed. It would save the destruction of great relationships. It is not always the person in the wrong who did the wrong.

‘..within my JesusTime that night’

Where do you allow Holy Spirit to speak to you about these things?
Holy Spirit comes to reveal truth to us.
If we are not having consistent regular time with the Trinity; we can miss these very important moments in our walks. Keeping to time has always been an issue, God honours a person who will avail themselves to the process of change.

Self-reflection enables the practical application of the Christian principles. It is important so that we can gauge where we are and what the necessary steps are to become more like Jesus, in order to please Our Father.

‘Examine yourselves to see if your faith is genuine. Test yourselves. Surely you know that Jesus Christ is among you; if not, you have failed the test of genuine faith..’

Let us examine and probe our ways, And let us return to the LORD.

(2 Corinthians 13:5; Lamentations 3:40)

Have you ever had a moment where you have to stop and hear yourself talk because you don’t sound like you? You sound mature and grown up? I find that to sit down and think about yourself as a person, I end up coming into such a time of thankfulness to Our Father. How He changes your heart!
God is always working on the inside. Through the sanctified work of the Holy Spirit, your insides are being ‘jumbled-up’ and ordered again.

I thank God knowing that He knows what changes need to happen and where within me I need to think on. Our journeys as believers is measured by the degree to which we become more Christ-like.

Process is from the outside in; self-reflection is from the inside out.

In all your ways acknowledge Him! (Proverbs 3:6).


Blossom Into,

Reflectors & Changers.

Gina x

The Heart Series

The Heart Series: My Prayer for the heart

my prayer for the heart
Ezekiel 11:19 ‘….. I will remove from them their heart of stone and give them a heart of flesh’. 

Since the beginning of the year, my heart has been going through a ‘processing season’. I’ve had to come to terms with the Holy Spirit telling me about myself (not fun but very necessary). This last month, I have discovered that I am selfish, I do not love like Christ, I still hurt over things in my past and that I do not deal with issues effectively… Ouch. Conviction has been very real. I’ve been fighting within myself about the next few posts, let me be real honest. However, I would be doing an injustice if I wanted to come across all ‘put together’. I’m as broken as the next.

This is what I will call an introduction to the ‘Heart Series’.

Seasons of refinement are so necessary for the heart. They are so necessary for you to grow and develop into the person God needs you to be. How did Father let me know I needed to work on these things? Through the time I spent with Him.
One morning, in my quiet time, I asked Father: ‘So what should a heart be like… since mine is so messy at the moment?’
I grabbed a pen and paper and I wrote this prayer down….

I pray we realise how much we are LOVED.
I pray you realise the outpouring of love over you; coupled with grace and favour.
I pray your heart rejoices in the fact that He has given you all that you need in this time. He has prepared you for such a time as this and He is preparing you for a time to come.
Know that, He is a faithful God and that His mercy endures forever (Psalm 136:1).
I pray you experience His love through the community He has provided for you and moves you to a place of fellowship to know a level of love you have never known before.
I pray that your heart heals. I pray you come to a place of liberation. Know that, He wants, and will deal with all that is within your heart. He search the heart and examine our minds (Jeremiah 17:10).
I pray that today, if you hear his voice, you do not harden your hearts (Hebrews 3:15). May your heart be open to allow God to go deep within, and may you be willing to receive the deep revelations He will show you and I pray you know that you love because He first loved you (1 John 4:19).
I pray you choose love that endures as Christ paid the ultimate sacrifice for you. You are precious, God PURSUES YOU! I pray you seek peace and pursue it (Psalm 34:14). Know that you are blessed, strong and protected under the shadow of the Almighty (Psalm 91:1)

I pray your heart is broken, that all the pain, hurt that has built up is exposed. A  broken spirit;  a broken and contrite heart, O God, you will not despise (Psalm 51:17) – that He puts a new heart and a new spirit in you, pouring in His perfect love which casts out fear (Ezekiel 11:19, 1 John 4:18). For you have not been given the spirit of fear but of power, love and of a sound mind (2 Timothy 1: 7). In your hearts set apart Christ as Lord (1 Peter 3: 15). You are more than a conqueror, (Romans 8:37,) who can deal with anything because you can do everything through Christ who strengthens you. (Philippians 4: 13).
I pray you come to know that God doesn’t do seasonal wins, He only does total victory; for ALL of you – Body, Soul and Spirit. That he has won the victory through the epitome of love embodied in the bearings of the cross. 

I pray you realise this is His will for your heart – start living in His will! He who has started a good work in you will continue until completion,  until the day of Christ ( Philippians 1: 6); have hope in that! He never fails and will uphold you with His right hand (Isaiah 41: 10).
I pray you become man after God’s heart such as David, I pray you have a blessed assurance that God is your friend as Abraham. (1 Samuel 13:14, James 2:23).
I pray your journey is spirit-led as Moses, recognising that He leads you step by step and He clears the path for your coming. Be strong and courageous (Joshua 1:9).

For all the glory and honour is yours Almighty Father,

Through Christ our Lord who lives and reigns forever and ever,



Tough Change


Took the time to really process…

Happy Monday all! To kick start the week, here’s a post I wrote on Saturday after an eventful time…

Tough Change

Currently I’m sitting in Starbucks™ with a freshly made Chai Tea Latte and a croissant, with my bible alongside me. I’m at a place of peace at the moment. It was not like that a few hours ago. This morning all my plans were wrecked. I could be annoyed and feel some type of way but given God has been about that YOLO life lately, I’m no longer surprised…

So I’m in a season of tough change, which involves a lot of personal growth. Now I understand we are all growing and God works on us all the time, but this season has been a ‘I’m-going-to-do-things-so-you-can-finally-see-phase’ from Father. Let me explain.

I clearly remember a time in prayer last year where I was in my room and in earnest prayer said: ‘Father, I want to be used by you, make me a worthy vessel, take away anything in me that is not of you and place things in me that can and will be used for you kingdom’.
One little tip: Watch your mouth, He hears it all!
So God took me up on my offer.
Holy Spirit started to reveal to me that I’m judgmental, fearful, doubting…etc. Well, I was fine with those. Of course conviction and discipline is not fun at the time, but I recognized these things had to go. Here’s where God took it down a path I didn’t like. I was convicted over the obvious, which was understandable, but now Father wanted to tell me that my own traits that build my character are not right either? – Tough change.
Anyone who knows me knows that I am a planner. I am a strategic person, who works by organized methods. I’m that person who will plan the journey and back, and write out each phase of the journey and consider all outcomes of any situation.
This is my ‘pride trait’. The one thing I could bank on to pull me through; having a clear sense of direction.
So tell me why I am now being convicted over my own trait that has got me through messy times? I can honestly say at one point I felt attacked. Multiple(s) of people would say: ‘Gina you don’t need to plan this’, or ‘whoa you’re overly organized, relax’.
I took these comments with a pinch of salt and brushed them off. I failed to see there was any problem – Pride.
A friend one day asked me: ‘So if I asked you to go for a coffee would you go?’
‘I would have to look at the schedule’ I replied.
One Sunday of planned coffee ended up in a whole car journey to the coast of Kent (Broadstairs, beautiful place). I remember feeling so tense on the way there, it wasn’t planned. There was genuine anxiety at one point.
On another occasion, a library conversation ended in a spontaneous trip to a historic castle…at about 10pm… but that’s just the extent that Father needs to go to teach me a lesson.

Through all the spontaneous ventures one thing struck a chord with me. My friend, Tim said:

‘In order to grow, God will put you in uncomfortable situations’.

I realized I had been so comfortable planning every aspect of life. Father knew and needed me to change. So he used a number of people and random unexpected moments to grab my attention.

The fact that Father knows what He has placed in me, yet still refines, opened my eyes to my own pride. It was, and still is, painful to the ego. However in all things, we give thanks because God just wants us to see ourselves how He sees us. God has the purest love that deals with aspects of my life and own areas in my personality that would be contradictory to the amazing plan He has for my life.

Father wants to deal with every aspect of you. From our weaknesses right through to our strengths because we are not, and will never be, perfect but there is beauty in the freedom and liberation of acknowledging and working on those weaknesses. He needs us to focus on Him, to realize how in everything He gets the glory and we are to trust Him:

Jeremiah 29:11 – ‘For I know the plans I have for you, plans to prosper and not to harm, plans to give you hope and a future’.

These ‘plans’ are not our own. We need  to be able to humble ourselves to deal the tough change:

2 Chronicles 7:14 – ‘ If my people, which are called by my name, shall humble themselves, and pray, and seek my face, and turn from their wicked ways; then will I hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin, and will heal their land.’

It will work out and make you a better you. Everything is prep, training for the life He needs us to live in order to walk out our purpose.

We are always trying to gain control in this life and we give ourselves a false sense of security. Trusting Him in the small things such as the plan for your day is significant start.
These beautiful scripture apply so much to the eventful time this morning.
According to my own plans I should be in Hertfordshire, on a retreat day with a friend. Being a genius in hindsight, this was not Father’s plan for my day.
It started with confliction. I was debating with myself whether I should go; I ended up reasoning and saying: ‘I’m spending a day with my Father; of course He wants me to go and do that’.
However something didn’t sit well with me. So I continued with that train of thought, convincing myself successfully. So we both got ready and off we went.
First barriers were physical ones. The train station was shut. So we got on the rail replacement bus. Got to the next available station and the train we were waiting for just decided to delete itself off the train schedule, oh and the next two trains after that. We were stranded for a while. In my conviction of my own plan (I wanted to go on this retreat) I stated ‘Nope a train will come’. Indeed it did but now we are tight for time. We had a set coach set off time.
At the interchange now in a station full of people, what would make this day even better; if I lost my friend right? Yeah that happened and I walked around the station for about 20 minutes. I was confused. I asked God: ‘really, at this time, how convenient?’
The Underground, having no reception, hindered communication at the time. Turns out she had got on the tube. At the time I eventually spoke to her she was nearly there and I said I’d just make my way home.
I smiled and laughed for bit thinking: ‘It was not the plan today, was it Father?’
Peace filled my heart. I had felt so panicked and conflicted but His perfect peace is confirmation.

On the way home I took a detour (hence my presence in Starbucks™). I took a walk around London and now I am sitting here writing in full flow, uninterrupted and at peace. Something I wanted do the whole week.
So you see God had to alter my plans for His will to be done. I wrote the post I was ‘too busy’ to do.
See… so it actually all works out in the end.

As I take the last sip of my Chai Tea and finish my croissant, I can gladly say – Father ‘messed’ up my plans today and I totally okay about it.

Have a blessed week,

Gina x