6 Simple Rules For Happiness Devotional

Truly, I have an obsession with Cracker Barrel.   It’s our favorite family style restaurant, but the best part is finding all the cute little gifts in the nooks and crannies of this charming country store.  I walk around, looking for that little treasure, inspiring quote or yummy scented candle.  Recently, I found this precious wall art quote:  6 Simple Rules For Happiness.  The words spoke to my heart and made me remember how blessed life is and happiness is simply around us.  If we just take a look.  

1.  Free Your Heart From Hatred

Although we may not understand why bad things happen in this world, we must restrain our heart from becoming bitter.  Hate is a deep root that slowly becomes like a slow drip.  Before we know it, our heart can be drowning in it.  It’s easier to hate those who hurt us, but it’s bigger for us to love.  Choose love.  


2.  Set Your Mind Free of Worries
Pray.  Release. Repeat.  Bring your cares to God.  Lay down your burdens.   If He carried the weight of the world, then I know He’ll carry you.   It’s so much easier to trust God with everything, so choose to set your mind free of worry and doubt.  I take time to read a book and sip on my favorite hot beverage.  Quiet prayer time in the morning or through out the day is important to help free yourself from worry.  It’s the little things that help us remember to trust God with all of our hearts . . . daily.   



3.  Live Simply

We can learn so much from our children when it comes to living simply.  Children breeze through their day with no cares of the future, because they know their parents are taking care of them.  Our Father God is taking care of everything in our lives.  Sometimes, we can’t see it because we have too much chaos in the midst.  Clear the clutter in our hearts.  Living big is living simple.  We serve a BIG God and all he wants from us is our hearts.  



4.   Give More

The world says take, but God says give.  Give and it shall be given to you, good measure, pressed down, shaken together and running over shall men give into your bosom (Luke 6:38).   During this season, as a family we like to give and bless whom the Lord directs us.  Hadara had so much fun shopping for the Christmas Child shoe box and packing it full of gifts!  It’s been said that we can’t out give God.  His heart is immense.  If only we can learn to give out loud like Him?  It just takes a little bit.   We CAN give the gifts of time, treasure and talent to bless others every day.  

5.  Expect Less

Less is more.  Living simply brings more peace and joy to our lives.  Right now, the Lord is teaching me how be giving without expecting anything back in return.  That can be hard.  We are so wired to have a “take” mentality versus a “give” mentality.  With Jesus as my example, I’m learning to open my heart and share the LOVE.  


6.  Always Forgive Others 

Men will disappoint us but God never will.  Yet, how many times have we disappointed God?  
Too many to count.  During a homeschool lesson on forgiveness, Hadara drew this precious picture of Jesus above which I shared on Instagram.   We talked about how it’s hard to forgive and why it’s important to forgive.  Unforgiveness separates us from God.  It destroys our relationship with Jesus and others.  I think the tears that Hadara drew flowing from Jesus’ eyes, describe forgiveness beautifully.  Sometimes in order for us to be happy, we must shed some tears.  When we fall on our face before Jesus and seek His forgiveness, tears fall like rain.  Blessings come through many tear drops.  Jesus was and is our greatest blessing of all! 

For His anger is but for a moment, His favor is for life; Weeping may endure for a night, But joy comes in the morning.  Psalm 30: 5

Even when it’s painful, choose to forgive.  When we are offended or persecuted choose to forgive.  When the tears keep flowing, choose to forgive.  When you believe you are right, choose to forgive.  Choose to forgive and be right in God’s sight.  


Happiness is a decision.  We must decide to free our hearts from hate, worry, learn to live simply, give more, expect less and always choose to forgive.  These are simple truths we can use to live out a blessed and happy life!   What are some rules of happiness you live by?  

Blessings and Shalom,

How to Keep Going When You Feel Like Running Away

 

I remember a commercial when I was little about bubble bath.  The commercial didn’t focus on the product, instead it focused on a overwhelmed mom who needed to get away.  She needed an escape from her daily grind, the kids and chores.  Can you guess what commercial I’m talking about?  “Calgon take me away!”.   I might be dating myself, but as a child of the 1980’s, seeing this commercial made a lasting impression.  When I became a mom, I learned early on that escaping from our troubles is not that easy, nor is it something a bath can remedy.  
 
What do I do when I have a desire to escape?  
Psalm 139: 7 tells us that we can never escape from God’s spirit and never get away from His presence!  We may want to run away when things gets hard or the pressure is high, but we must recognize that we cannot escape from God.  
 
Psalm 32: 7     You are my hiding place; you protect me from trouble.  You surround me with songs of victory.  
 
Psalm 46: 1     God is our refuge and strength , always ready to help in times of trouble.  
 
Psalm 57: 1      Have mercy on me, O God have mercy!  I look to you for protection.   I will hide beneath the shadow of your wings until this violent storm is past.  
 
When we feel like giving up, are we running to God or from God?  
When we have to escape, it should be into the arms of our loving God.  He is good.  When troubles comes, he is a strong refuge.  And He knows everyone who trusts in Him.  (Nahum 1:7).  

How does God provide ways of escape?  God provides physical and miraculous ways to escape.   In Genesis 7:7, we are reminded how God provided an escape for Noah, his wife, sons and their wives from destruction.  They went aboard the boat. 

In Genesis 19: 17, the angels warned Lot and his family to run for their lives, do not stop anywhere in the valley and don’t look back!  Escape to the mountains, or die.  

When the children of Israel were trapped at the Red Sea, God provided a path for the water and it was parted.  They crossed the dry land over night escaping their death.  Leaving slavery and their old life behind.   (Exodus 14:21)  

The Lord helps us escape from evil into a relationship with him.  Relationship requires intimacy and when we run to His mercy seat, He covers us.  

Proverbs 14: 27     Fear of the Lord is a life-giving fountain; it offers escape from the snares of death.  

God helps us escape from the wrong way to the right way.  
1 Corinthians 10: 13 tells us that God is faithful.  He will keep the temptation from becoming so strong that you can’t stand up against it.  When you are tempted, he will show you a way out so that you will not give in to it.    

Instead of running from God, when life gets hard, we must run to Him.  We must read and memorize these Bible verses.  His Word reminds us to run to Him on a daily basis.   Instead of using things to escape like sinful habits, relaxation or a vacation, let us first run to the arms of Jesus.  Where mercy meet us, His shalom finds us and His grace covers us.  

Keep going, keep the faith and finish the race!  

Blessings and Shalom, 







This article is a part of my Women in the Word series where you will find Bible encouragement  on Wednesday twice a month.  I hope it’s a blessing to you.  

How to Overcome Jealousy, the Evil Root {Women in the Word}

I have a problem.  I look around the blogger world and find sometimes I just don’t measure up.  No matter how hard I try, I just can’t keep up.   Basicly, it’s hard to be someone I’m not.  Yet, daily I find myself getting caught in the trap of comparison.  Jealousy creeps in and before I know it, I’ve grown a field of evil roots.  Yes, it’s hard to admit.  I’m writing this post because I feel it’s something many of us struggle with, yet the one thing we fail to admit.  

When I was in high school choir, I was jealous of the girl who sang better than me.  

When I became a Christian, I was jealous of the woman who knew more Bible than me. 

When I attended homeschool co-op groups, I was jealous of other moms who had many children, because I only had one.  

Do you ever get jealous?   Jeolousy is an evil root to deal with, but it can be defeated.   The Bible tells us in James 3:16, “For where there are jealousy and selfish ambition, there will be disharmony and every foul practice”.  Jealousy brings about other sinful habits and curses in our lives.  We have no peace or shalom when we harbor jealousy.  How do we overcome this evil root?  By destroying it at the root and making sure it doesn’t shoot up again.  We must change our thinking and intentionally execute a strategy.  If you’re struggling with jealousy today, here are 5 ways you can overcome jealousy in your life! 

1.  Be honest with yourself.  Admit you have a jealousy problem.  Confess it to God and ask forgiveness.   
James 5:16 Therefore confess your sins to each other and pray for each other so that you may be healed. The prayer of a righteous person is powerful and effective.

2.  Don’t compare yourself to others.  Instead put your focus on Jesus.  When our eyes look away from Him and start looking around at others, we become like Peter.  Peter walked on the water, but began to sink when he took his eyes off of his Master.  You are unique and special in Jesus’ eyes.  His approval is all that matters.  When you’re looking into Jesus’ eyes,  you can see yourself the way God sees you.  All insecurities vanish, when we remember we are a daughter of the King.  

Hebrews 12:1-2 Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses, let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles.  And let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us, fixing our eyes on Jesus, the pioneer and perfecter of our faith . . . “. 


3.  Rejoice over the success of others.  Instead of feeling sorry for yourself for what others have and you don’t, be happy for them.  We must not be selfish.  One day, you will be celebrating a success, and will appreciate others celebrating with you.  This can be hard for women especially,  but complimenting another woman for her success brings true joy to yours and her heart.  It’s a win win situation.  
Romans 12:15 When others are happy, be happy with them.  If they are sad, share their sorrow.  

4.  Be an encourager of others.  Jealousy can drive a wedge between relationships.  It’s important to keep encouraging one another.  Instead of allowing jealousy to win, fight back with an encouraging word, or action.  Have you heard of the phrase, “kill them with kindness”?  Well, I say, “Kill jealousy with kindness!”.    
Hebrews 10:24  Think of ways to encourage one another to outbursts of love and good deeds.  

5.   Continually evaluate your inward heart.  What helps me is studying Bible verses to keep my heart where it’s suppose to be.  When I have the Word of God fresh in my mind, I can choose to make better decisions about my feelings and actions.   
Romans 7: 22  I love God’s law with all my heart.  

2 Corinthians 4: 16  This is why we do not lose courage. Though our outer self is heading for decay, our inner self is being renewed daily.

Romans 12:2 And do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, that you may prove what is that good and acceptable and perfect will of God.

Jealousy may be an evil root, but with God’s strategy, we can conquer it daily.  

How are some ways you deal with jealousy?  

Blessings and Shalom, 






Please comment below or share here how this article helped you.  Thank you!  

Women in the Word {The Fear of the Lord}

Yesterday during Bible time in homeschool, Hadara and I were studying Proverbs 15:6.  It’s not one of those popular verses in the Bible.  In fact, one that I hardly knew existed.  However, this one is packed with punch and spoke loudly to me.  

Now, let’s read Proverbs 15: 6

Better a little with the fear of the Lord than great wealth with turmoil. 

As we talked about what turmoil means, I looked it up.  It’s not a pleasant word.  One that I would want to stay far from my life or anyone’s life for that matter.  

Turmoil, a state of great disturbance, confusion or uncertainty.  Trouble and mayhem!  Who wants that?  

The fear of the Lord is the key here.  Without the fear of the Lord in our life, we can manifest turmoil in our life.  So, even if we have little, as long as we have the fear of the Lord we have everything!  For what shall it profit a man, if he shall gain the whole world, and lose his own soul? (Mark 8:36).  Wealth is not bad, but without the fear of the Lord in your life, riches are meaningless.  You have nothing! 

So, let’s flip it!  The opposite of disturbance and confusion is peace.  The opposite of uncertainty is having complete confidence and trust in the Lord for our present and future.  Since we know we are His and no matter what happens in our life, we have one destination and that’s to be with Jesus!  

Proverbs 9:10 says, “The fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom and the knowledge of the Holy One is understanding”.    Isn’t it wise to choose peace over turmoil? 
Blesssed assurance over uncertainty?   A sound mind over being disturbed? 
Definitely!  

Without Jesus in my life, I remember a time when I was very disturbed, confused and very uncertain about my future and my eternal destiny.  That was not a fun or good place to be.  It’s a painful place.  Lonely and fearful.  

Yet, my life changed the moment I chose to walk in the fear of the Lord.  I ponder why many do not choose this path when it’s a beautiful path of love, joy and peace.  Jesus calms the storms in our lives.  Yes, there will be storms, but during those times, I don’t want to be apart from Him.  For He is my safety and my strong tower when the waves come crashing in. 

As a woman of God, we must remember daily that the fear of the Lord is a very important key in our faith walk.  As mothers, it’s important to teach this to our children.  It’s important to check our hearts daily to see if the fear of the Lord is prevalently living and existing in our lives and hearts.  I think this verse is actually a good test to see where we are and to be intentional in our faith walk.  

When I feel disturbed, confused or uncertain, I must pay attention.  I must get alone with God and ask Him. Do I still have the fear of the Lord?  Whether I have much or little.  During a time of feast or famine.  I must seek Him.  

Today, I encourage you to seek the God of peace, Jehovah Shalom.  If you are battling a time in your life of turmoil, I pray that you seek His peace.  May you and your family be sheltered in His peace today.  No matter what you’re going through.  

I hope this encouraged you, because I felt led to share and hopefully it will help you like it helped me too.  Have a beautiful day! 

Blessings and Shalom, 

How Moms Can Start the Day Off Right!



Good morning Ladies! 

It’s been a while since I made a Women in the Word video for you.  Well, today’s the day!  I decided to keep it short (although that’s hard for me, but I did it) and post this early in the morning for you, so you can use this video as part of your mommy morning devotional.   

Every day starts off with a new chance to love your husband, children and others.  No matter what happened yesterday, today is a new day.  Joy comes in the morning right?  Well, maybe that’s  a challenge for you?   Today, I want to share with you moms how you can start your day off right-God’s way!  Thank you for taking time to watch today’s video.  I pray it blesses and encourages you in your life right now.  Please tell me what you think or how it encouraged you, by commenting below or on my YouTube channel. Be sure to subscribe to my YouTube channel for more encouraging weekly videos!   

Have a Beautiful Day!  

Blessings and Shalom,  











Women in the Word: Do You Dream? {What the Bible Says About Dreams}

I’m a dreamer.  I’ve always been one since I can remember.  Twelve years ago, I learned to pay attention to my dreams.  Some dreams are God’s way of speaking to me at a time when I’m ready to listen.  Did you know, you are more willing to listen to God when you are asleep, oppose to being awake?   When you are going about your daily schedule, you can be distracted from hearing God’s voice.  Distractions cause us to lose focus on hearing the Holy Spirit.  God is always speaking to us, however are we listening?

Looking back at my dreams I had when I was a child, teenager or as a young adult, I can see how the Lord was either warning me or giving me direction.  God can speak to anyone in dreams, whether you believe in Him or not.  Whether you are a Christian or not.  I can attest to this, because I was not a believer in Jesus when I received dreams from heaven.

What about Joseph?  
The Bible tells us that Joseph was a dreamer.  God also connected him with people who were not believers, yet they were dreamers.  Genesis chapters 40-41 tells us about:

Cup Bearer, Baker, and Pharaoh.

All dreamers who had been given a dream from God.

Cup Bearer was given direction.

Baker was given a warning.

Pharaoh was given a warning and strategy for the future.

However, they did not understand what theses dreams meant.  What good is a dream from God if you dismiss it, or can’t interpret it?  As God’s plan for Joseph’s life unfolds, we see the importance of a dream’s message.  For, it changed his life.  

I’ve been learning how to interpret dreams for ten years now.  The Bible says in Acts 2:17,  “In the last days, God says, I will pour out my Spirit on all people. Your sons and daughters will prophesy, your young men will see visions, your old men will dream dreams.

Dreaming is just the beginning.  Understanding the dream is another challenge.   I don’t know why God speaks to us in metaphors or symbols.  I mean, why doesn’t He just come out with it?  I believe it’s because He wants us to dive deeper.  As deep calls to deep the Bible says in Psalm 42: 7, “Deep calls unto deep at the noise of Your waterfalls; All Your waves and billows have gone over me”.  
God desires for us to

  • ask Him for interpretation of the dream. 
  • draw close to Him for an answer in prayer.
  • talk back to Him- a two way conversation. 
  • bless others as we share our dreams.   
  • give us the opportunity to figure it out for ourselves.  

Isn’t He a good God!  How Great is our God?
Great enough and loving enough to show us insight and a plan for our lives.  
As Jeremiah 29:11- 13 says, “For I know the thoughts that I think toward you, says the Lord, thoughts of peace and not of evil, to give you a future and a hope.  Then you will call upon Me and go and pray to Me, and I will listen to you.  And you will seek Me and find Me, when you search for Me with all your heart”.  

But I Don’t Dream.  
 
Are you one of those people who never dreams?  Do you want to dream?  My husband Ruben never dreamed before, or if he did, he couldn’t remember them.  Then, Ruben asked God to help Him in this area.  Within a few months of studying God’s Word on dreams and desiring more of God, Ruben began to dream.  Soon, he began to interpret my dreams and his own dreams.  Doing this together as a married couple, has also helped us make wise decisions for our future and avoid disaster.   It also showed us how to pray for situations and intercede for people.  It’s simple my friend, ask the Lord to speak to you.  Most of all, ask Him for ears to hear and eyes to see that you shall remember upon waking.

But I dream, I just don’t know what they mean? 
Do you want to find out what they mean?  I suggest, once upon waking, write your dream down or record it.  I keep a dream journal (composition notebook) set aside for my dreams.  I start a new one every year.  It’s great because you can use these journals to interpret or refer back to past dreams.  Sometimes God gives us a few puzzle pieces that we need to connect into a bigger picture by referring back to past dreams.  Also, Ask Holy Spirit to show you what your dreams mean to you.  Remember, dreams from God are personal.  So you can’t compare another dream to yours, or interpret your dream according to another.  Get a good biblically based dream Book to help you learn more and guide you with symbolic meanings.   I suggest my two favorite books: 

Understand Your Dreams Now:  Spiritual Dream Interpretation by Doug Addison


Seeing the Voice of God by 
Laura Harris Smith 

The Lord says, “Call to me and I will answer you and tell you great and unsearchable things you do not know” (Jeremiah 33:3).   It’s time to go to the next level!  We are living in a day when we need to hear the voice of God for every direction and new decision in our lives.  Don’t discredit your dreams!

God is speaking to you, take time to listen. 

Blessings and Shalom, 







Do you dream?  Has a dream from God changed your life?  Please share by commenting below.  

Week 5-Women in the Word: Join Us Today Live!


Good morning Woman in the Word! We’re LIVE! 

Today we’re meeting for our last online bible study of this series.  I can’t believe it’s already here. 

I hope you’ll join me today LIVE in the comfort of your own home. 11 a.m. MST

Remember if you have a Google + add Little Pink Casa to one of your circles so you can join me during our LIVE Google + Hangout Women in the Word Bible Study.  


Click HERE to join our Live Google + Hangout at 11 a.m. MST for Bible Study. 

We are covering chapters 11, 12, 13 and 14 from the book, “How to Build a Strong Christian Home” by June Fuentes.  Topics include serving as a family, how to be a wise woman and guarding the home. We will also learn the secret to a happy home


Download your FREE PRINTABLE WEEK 5 BIBLE STUDY SHEET to take notes.   

Watch below LIVE on youtube or to watch later at your own convenience.  

Today is also National Day of Prayer

Take time to pray and seek God’s face.  We have so much to pray for and ask the Lord to intervene on our behalf. 

Never underestimate the power of prayer. 




Thanks for joining me today!  

Blessings and Shalom, 




Inspired here?  
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Week 4: Women in the Word! Watch Live Today



Good morning Woman in the Word! We’re LIVE! 

Today we are meeting for our online bible study and I’m so excited!  

I hope you join me today LIVE in the comfort of your own home. 11 a.m. MST

Remember if you have a Google + add Little Pink Casa to one of your circles so you can join me during our LIVE Google + Hangout Women in the Word Bible Study.  

Click HERE to join our Live Google + Hangout at 11 a.m. MST for Bible Study. 

We are covering chapters 8, 9 and 10 from the book, “How to Build a Strong Christian Home” by June Fuentes.  Topics include influence of a Godly atmosphere in your home, influence of entertainment in your home and tips on how to make memories in the kitchen.  

Also download your FREE PRINTABLE WEEK 3 BIBLE STUDY SHEET to help you with taking notes.  

Watch below LIVE on youtube or to watch later at your own convenience.  

Thank’s for joining me today!
Blessings and Shalom


  Encouraged here?  Receive more Biblical encouragement every week-Subscribe! 

Week 3-Women in the Word: Watch Today Live!


Hi Woman in the Word! We’re LIVE! 

Today we are meeting for our bible study and I’m so excited!  

I hope you join me today LIVE in the comfort of your own home. 11 a.m. MST

Remember if you have a Google + add Little Pink Casa to one of your circles so you can join me during our LIVE Google + Hangout Women in the Word Bible Study.  

Click HERE to join our Live Google + Hangout at 11 a.m. MST

We are covering chapters 6 and 7 from the book, “How to Build a Strong Christian Home” by June Fuentes.  Topics include teaching the Bible in the home and tips on how to have intentional conversations with your children.  

Also download your FREE PRINTABLE WEEK 3 BIBLE STUDY SHEET to help you with taking notes.  

Click below to watch LIVE or to watch later at your own convenience.  


Thank’s for joining me today! 

Blessings and Shalom



Week 2 Women in the Word: Watch Now Live!

Hi Woman in the Word! We’re LIVE!  

I’m beyond ecstatic that you are joining me today LIVE in the comfort of your own home. 

Remember if you have a Google + add Little Pink Casa to one of your circles so you can join me during our LIVE Hangout Women in the Word Bible Study.  

Also download your FREE PRINTABLE WEEK 2 BIBLE STUDY SHEET for notes.  

Please feel free to comment below on this blog post:  

1.  Where are you from? 

2.  What did you learn today? 

3.  Any questions you may have?