Plugged In?

In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. -John 1:1

What are you plugged into-the Word or the world? If you are plugged into the world, you are much more susceptible to the enemy. And, he is out there seeking to kill, steal, and destroy. He wants to devour anyone he can get his hands on. Peter urges us in 1 Peter 5:8, to “Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil walks about like a roaring lion, seeking whom he may devour.” What a perfect opportunity for him to slither in when our focus isn’t where it needs to be.

With distractions and temptations at our every whim, along with a society pulling us in constant worldly directions, it’s easy to succumb to the world, leaving openings for the Satan. I don’t know about you, but I’m not up for playing tug o’ war with the enemy. And that’s exactly what we are leaving ourselves vulnerable to when we are not plugged into the Bible and dwelling in His presence. I recently came across this quote by Jarred Wilson, which says, The closer we are to the Shepherd, the safer we are from the wolves.

We must close the gaps, inching ourselves closer to our Shepherd day by day, moment by moment, arming ourselves with His Word, and clothing ourselves with rest of the armor of God. By making a conscious effort to die to ourselves daily, choosing God, and living out His Word continuously, we remain plugged into Him. It’s not enough to just read the Word-we must live it and breathe it. We must apply it in our everyday lives, not just as an after thought.

Do not love the world or anything that belongs to the world. If you love the world, you do not love the Father. Everything that belongs to the world—what the sinful self desires, what people see and want, and everything in this world that people are so proud of—none of this comes from the Father; it all comes from the world. -1 John 2:15

Cheer On, Cheerleader!

Therefore encourage one another and build each other up, just as in fact you are doing. -1 Thessalonians 5:11

Are you being a cheerleader in your loved ones lives? Encouraging others is something God calls us to do. Recently, my husband and I watched Life Below Zero: Port Protection. One of the women on the show, Timbi, was holding her tongue and mentioned she was trying to be a cheerleader for her husband in order to help keep him on track with his projects. I could see she was frustrated, but at the same time she bit her tongue and proceeded to continue to motivate him. She stood by his side and cheered him on to move forward with their projects, despite his mistakes and setbacks. This made me think about how God has called us to act. As Christians, we are called to uplift others. Proverbs 18:21 says, The tongue has the power of life and death, and those who love it will eat its fruit.

Being a perfectionist and being very particular about how I like things done, I’ll be the first to admit, it’s easy to pick. What’s harder is choosing the higher road by setting expectations aside and building others up. This can be extremely challenging. When we want something done a certain way or expect something to get completed to our satisfaction and it’s not, how much more difficult it is to hold our tongue and speak words of encouragement. I’m not saying we can’t ever express our dissatisfaction or our feelings, but we need to do it in a way that is not tearing others down. This is something I am definitely working on.

So, the next time we are tempted to get upset about something someone did that wasn’t up to par with what was hoped, let’s remember to bite it and build them up. Whether it’s a friend or a coworker, a family member or neighbor-we can look for the good and choose our words carefully-words that speak life, and not death.

Let no corrupting talk come out of your mouths, but only such as is good for building up, as fits the occasion, that it may give grace to those who hear. -Ephesians 4:29

Shine His Love

Above all, keep loving one another earnestly, since love covers a multitude of sins. -1 Peter 4:8

Are you so caught up in the busyness of life and the world that you are forgetting to let your love shine? If we aren’t careful, we can easily get swept up in the day to day, overlooking and missing the most important opportunities to give and show the love of Christ. These moments are everywhere. And if there’s one thing we could all use, it’s little (or a lot) more love. Sometimes, spreading that love can be as simple as a smile. Let’s be the light that brightens and changes lives. And let’s make sure that everything we do and say, is done in love.

Dear Lord, let us keep our eyes and hearts open to these moments and remember why we were put on this earth. I pray that we can be a vessel of your love, shining bright for those who need it most.


In the same way, let your light shine before others, so that they may see your good works and give glory to your Father who is in heaven. -Matthew 5:16

Fear as an Idol

for God gave us a spirit not of fear but of power and love and self-control. -2 Timothy 1:7 ESV

Can fear be an idol? This is something I recently began pondering. If we are drowning in our fears, instead of hiding in God, I believe it absolutely can be. When we are in fear, we are not trusting our Creator. And mistrust, is the opposite of having faith. If we are so frightened and wrapped up in our fears, we are not walking in faith-not believing that our Father has everything under control. When our fears are elevated to the point of interfering with our relationship with God, fear has become an idol. We must instead, give these fears to God and choose trust. By handing each thing we are afraid of over to Him, we can rest in peace knowing that he has us. He has our lives and those around us in his palms. This doesn’t mean we won’t have hardships, of course. He, however, will give us the strength to endure those trials, blanketing us with His peace along the way.

So do not fear, for I am with you; be not dismayed, for I am your God. I will strengthen you and help you, I will uphold you with my righteous right hand. -Isaiah 41:10

Slow Down

Presence: It’s a hot topic in my world. In a previous post a few months ago, I mentioned that this theme was popping up over and over in my quiet time with God. About the same time that this word presence first made its presence, I wrestled with God regarding my addiction to caffeine. It was a tough addiction to shake. Having chronic illnesses that cause an abnormal amount of fatigue, it was easy to justify my coffee consumption. My Dr. was even on board with two cups a day. So, when I felt like God was telling me to lay off of the coffee entirely, I fought doing this. Then, my husband helped me to realize the reason. It clicked. God wanted me to slow down and stop busying myself-to be present in Him because that is what is most important. Caffeine, being a stimulant, made me feel more energized and in turn, more productive. It helped me to do more. But doing isn’t always necessarily the best or right thing. Deepening our relationship with our Savior and relying on Him for our strength, is though. The world will tell us otherwise. And unless our focal point is Him, it can be difficult not to get sucked into the doing and keeping up with the Jones’.

Busyness can be a distraction. It can divert us from what our focus really needs to be on. I was playing Martha, when I needed to be Mary. My priorities were backwards. I was trying so hard to do, that I was not really listening to how He wanted me to do. I was doing in my own strength, when what He wanted for me was to stay in His presence, depending on Him-not caffeine. With today’s technology, it’s too easy to become inundated with the portrayals on TV and social media showing us what life “should” be like. If we aren’t intentional, how quickly our eyes can wander from Him. Wandering eyes, can mean more worldly tasks added to our plates. And if we can’t slow down on our own, God will find ways to slow us down and remind us what really matters-our relationship with and dependence on Him.

He wants us to know Him on a heart level. In order to do this, we must get to know Him better. So, how do we deepen our relationship with Him? We must spend time in his presence. When we set the busyness and distractions aside, instead of our relationship with Him, and we walk with Him in each moment, seeking Him with all our hearts, minds, and souls, all else will fall into place. So, let’s slow down, look up and remember to send prayers and praises to Him throughout each day.

“Martha, Martha,” the Lord answered, “you are worried and upset about many things, but few things are needed—or indeed only one. Mary has chosen what is better, and it will not be taken away from her.” Luke 10:41-42

My Quiet Time With God – Free Printables

Need help being consistent with counting your blessings and getting quiet with the Lord? Use one of “My Quiet Time with God” printables below. One of my goals this year was to teach our girls to spend time daily with God in order to begin growing their relationship with Him, so I have been creating “My Quiet Time With God” printables that will help them do just this. I’ve had so much fun making them that I decided to create a men’s version, women’s version, boy’s version, and girl’s version that the whole family can use. Just click on the links below to download and print each free pdf. Then, start each day in His presence by digging into His Word!

*These are for personal use only. Permission is not granted to sell the “My Quiet Time With God” printables.

Clothe Yourselves in Patience

Being a type A person, patience is definitely not my strong suit. I’m a pretty impatient person (my husband would laugh, saying that ‘pretty impatient’ is an understatement). I truly don’t understand how those B types work. My younger brother, however, is a type B personality to a T-one of the most laid-back people I know. Here’s how we differ. When I was on the phone with him one night, he was sitting in the Walmart parking lot and he told me that my fifteen-year-old niece just came back to the car from shopping and had lost his debit card. In the most peaceful, nonchalant way, he tells her “well, Jordan, that’s why I didn’t want you to take my card” and then remaining completely calm and unhurried, tells me he’s going to have to go inside and look for it. There was not an ounce of anger or frustration in his bones. I laughed when I got off the phone with him, thinking wow, I so would not do that. I’d be kinda freaking out. My impatient self would have been in the store already frantically running all over the place looking for it. We are total opposites, as you can see. I am not patient like that, but I’m really trying.

It’s a weakness God has been working with me on for quite awhile now and I’m definitely seeing the fruit of it, just not as quickly as I’d like (haha). I really don’t like waiting, but it seems that the more I hate it, the longer I have to wait, because God is going to teach me this lesson. And it’s not so much about the actual wait, as it is my attitude in the waiting. That’s even more difficult. And as for learning this lesson, it’s just a matter of how long it will actually take due to my willingness. So, I try to roll with it and accept it, but that doesn’t mean it isn’t hard. Since I’m more aware of my impatient nature than ever, I thought I’d dive into the Bible and see what He has to say about it. He tells us how to be patient. Here are 10 things we can learn about patience from His Word:

*Be patient in affliction

We will have trouble in this world, but He says to be patient in affliction, so when we are experiencing distress, we endure it and we accept it for the time being. It doesn’t mean it will be easy, or that it will last forever, but patiently accepting our suffering, will help us grow to be more like Him.

Be joyful in hope, patient in affliction, faithful in prayer. -Romans 12:12

*Be patient, bearing with one another in love

Be patient with family members, friends, the grocery store worker scanning groceries at a sloth’s pace, the guy flying past you on the road flipping the bird, the neighbor that drives you absolutely bonkers, your worst enemy. Let’s look at each person who crosses our paths, as there to teach and grow us. Be patient with everyone you come into contact with, so you can show the love of Christ. This will glorify Him and it will help us to live more peaceable lives.

Be completely humble and gentle; be patient, bearing with one another in love. -Ephesians 4:2

*Love endures with patience

Love is an action and one way we can love on people, is to show patience. Patience isn’t needed when life is easy, it’s the stressful times and under some of the toughest circumstances, where we are given chances to show love by being tolerant. Let’s look at our stressful moments as opportunities to live more like Christ, rather than just struggles to wade through while getting to the other side.

Love endures with patience and serenity, love is kind and thoughtful, and is not jealous or envious; love does not brag and is not proud or arrogant. -1 Corinthians 13:4 (AMP)

*Wait patiently for Him

We quiet ourselves before the Lord, and in the waiting, we put every piece of ourselves and others into His care. Then without worry, we trust Him to move in His time.

Be still before the Lord and wait patiently for him; do not fret when people succeed in their ways,when they carry out their wicked schemes. -Psalm 37:7

*Patience brings peace

Will you be a peace-maker or will you stir up strife? Will you put the fire out or will you fuel it? A calm attitude with self-restraint will help bring about peace, rather than stoke the flames.

Hot tempers cause arguments, but patience brings peace. -Proverbs 15:18

*We wait patiently in hope

I love how the amplified Bible translates Romans 8:25-we wait eagerly with composure-eagerly meaning we wait expectantly. And when we can’t see what’s ahead, we still hope with anticipation, while using self-control and not allowing our worry or emotions to run amuck.

But if we hope for what we do not see, we wait eagerly for it with patience and composure. -Romans 8:25 (AMP)

*Whoever is patient has great understanding

The wise are slow to anger and keep their emotions in check, showing self-control. Don’t be a fool and fly off the handle. Before I homeschooled, my daughter’s fourth grade teacher taught her something invaluable that I, in turn, learned as well. She taught her class a saying that she lives by and I just cherish this teaching! Whenever frustration, anger or impatience arises, let’s remind ourselves to: PAUSE*BREATH*LOVE.

Whoever is patient has great understanding, but one who is quick-tempered displays folly. -Proverbs 14:29

*Better a patient person than a warrior

Again, this is about having self-control. And for some of us that grew up fighting our way through life, this may be harder to do than others, especially if we’ve endured trauma. Letting anger take over though, will defeat us in the end. It is better to step back and show self-restraint, than soldier on.

Better a patient person than a warrior, one with self-control than one who takes a city. -Proverbs 16:32

*As God’s Chosen people, clothe yourselves in patience

As believers in Jesus, we were chosen to glorify Him and so we need to suit up, wearing the traits he instructs us to put on-compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience. And if we struggle with some of these? He tells us in His Word that when we remain in the Vine, we will bear much fruit-these traits He calls us to clothe ourselves with. And all of these traits really work together. Being patient can be a humble act and a form of kindness. And in showing patience, a gentle answer or attitude can go a long way in keeping the peace. So, let’s become more like Him, by remaining in Him, and in doing so, we can fulfill the duty we’ve been given.

Therefore, as God’s chosen people, holy and dearly loved, clothe yourselves with compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience. -Colossians 3:12

*Patience is better than pride

Pride causes more damage than good. Let’s therefore set aside our pride, ending matters before they start by patiently humbling ourselves.

The end of a matter is better than its beginning, and patience is better than pride. -Ecclesiastes 7:8

Fresh Juice on Squeezin’ Lyme

*Fresh Juice on Squeezin’ Lyme will consist of post updates I will write on occasion regarding what I’m learning while battling persistent Lyme disease and other chronic illnesses.

Praise the Lord, my soul, and forget not all his benefits— who forgives all your sins and heals all your diseases, who redeems your life from the pit and crowns you with love and compassion, -Psalm 103:2-4

Having health is an incredible blessing. As someone who lives with persistent Lyme disease along with other chronic illnesses that go hand in hand, I have my good days and I have my really, really terrible ones. (In a previous blog post here I shared my backstory and my journey of motherhood battling persistent Lyme disease) My quality of life has improved in the past few months, due to some new treatments. It has been such a long time coming-twenty-seven years long, and recently I’ve had more good days than bad, which I am so very thankful for. I still have to pace myself throughout each day, but I’m able to do much more than I was. When I am feeling well, I need to remember though, not to take those precious present moments for granted, because they aren’t guaranteed.

The other day, was a stark reminder that I am still living with these insidious illnesses. Not only are Lyme disease and these other conditions complex, Lyme is especially stealthy and symptoms will hit when I least expect them. Feeling like I had the full-blown flu and bedridden the majority of the day, I could hardly stand to be in my own body. It’s days such as these, that I can’t forget how truly blessed I am when the fatigue has subsided and hasn’t sucked everything from me and my joints aren’t aching constantly, when I can smile and laugh because I am able to live somewhat, rather than just survive. These aren’t illnesses for the faint of heart. Fighting persistent Lyme disease, along with other chronic conditions requires the endurance of a warrior, but more importantly, it requires God’s strength. Lyme disease is tricky to treat and often needs a multi-faceted approach.

Trying to describe life with Lyme to others who haven’t gone through it themselves, is an extremely difficult task. Just touching the surface of this illness, it would best be described as “pure suffering and misery”. To say the very least, it can be unbearable. It’s a kind of bodily torture where thoughts arise as to whether continuing to exist with these symptoms is even possible. The fatigue and weakness is incomprehensible to those who haven’t experienced it. The I-don’t-know-if-I-can-even-crawl-out-of-bed-the-few-feet-to-the-bathroom-and-back-to-bed, kind of fatigue and weakness, could be mentioned, but is an understatement. There have been days in the past, where help was needed and it seemed like death was sitting on my doorstep waiting to devour me. And on more than one occasion, I have actually thought I was dying. Those were the times I couldn’t fathom how anyone could continue to endure that amount of agony day after day and still be alive. While there are many other symptoms, fatigue and weakness are two of the biggest I’ve fought on a daily basis for as long as I can remember, until more recently.

I thank God for the new treatment regimen that has made my life and those around me a little easier. And while I don’t ever want to experience the debilitating symptoms I’ve gone through for years with these chronic illnesses, the really awful days do help me to remember that the present moment is just that-a present from My Father. Health is easy to overlook and not think twice about, until it’s gone. It’s those days though, when my symptoms let up and I feel healthier that I can see just how rich I am. To have health, is to live, not just survive. And that is a huge gift.

So let’s remind ourselves to live wisely and cherish each moment we do have, thanking Him for the present, because we will never have those same moments again.

Be very careful, then, how you live—not as unwise but as wise, making the most of every opportunity, because the days are evil. -Ephesians 5:15-16

Fuel Your Walk Friday

Fuel your walk with some Jesus and Joe.

I love Jesus and I love me an iced cuppa fresh cold brew halved with vanilla almond milk, so I recently started something new on my blog called “Fuel Your Walk Fridays”. What better way to combine the two and perk up the beginning of your weekend, than to “Fuel Your Walk” with some Jesus and Joe. Once a week, I will be posting a little snippet, thought, or questions to ponder in relation to your walk with Christ. So grab your favorite mug, pour yourself a delicious cuppa Joe and get comfy as you let these questions percolate in your mind:

In His Word, 1 Timothy 6:12 says to Fight the good fight of faith, lay hold on eternal life, to which you were also called and have confessed the good confession in the presence of many witnesses.

Living in a world fraught with unrest and strife, how will you continue to fight the good fight of faith? In your life, what does fighting the good fight look like to you? And in the midst of that fight, how will you be a light for others?

Copyright © 2021 Aimee Phillippi

Once Enslaved, Now Free

No temptation has overtaken you except such as is common to man; but God is faithful, who will not allow you to be tempted beyond what you are able, but with the temptation will also make the way of escape, that you may be able to bear it. -1 Corinthians 10:13

I haven’t talked about addiction on my blog before, but as a recovering addict, it’s high time I do so. Growing up, I had a healthy fear of drugs and alcohol. Alcoholism runs heavily in my family, and after dabbling with drinking in my younger years, I realized I could be in real trouble with it, if I didn’t stop. Drugs, on the other hand, just plain scared me. I prided myself on never trying a drug in my life (yes, not even marijuana) and choosing to stop drinking when I did. It’s really not about which drug a person chooses to use though. Each drug of choice is just a byproduct or symptom of underlying pain, shame, and other demons. And my pride eventually caught up to me because little did I know I was becoming addicted to other things and even people. The “drugs” I chose, I couldn’t stop on my own without God’s help.

One of these drugs is food-especially sugar, but it took a long time to acknowledge it, because for many years, I maintained a relatively healthy body weight. My relationship with food, however, was far from healthy. Until I admitted that I was a food addict, and really worked on growing my relationship with God through a twelve-step program, I couldn’t break free and stop compulsively overeating. Held captive, food had its grip on me.

All forms of addiction are imprisoning, but food, it seems, is a slightly different ball game. Unlike being able to set down the bottle or needle, and never use again, our bodies need food for fuel. There is no setting down the food and never touching it again. Sugar, yes. Food altogether, no. And as many, many food addicts can attest to, diets, restricting food, and overexercising just don’t work. Trying them all, I attempted to starve myself, I engorged myself and then vomited, I pushed my body too hard, exercising more than it needed, and I took prescription diet pills-which later were taken off the market due to some very serious side effects. It harmed my body in the process and I was still a slave to food. For some time, I was able to control my eating, but as addiction goes, it got progressively worse. Becoming a compulsive overeater and sugar addict, I couldn’t stop.

So, how do we stop compulsively putting those extra bites in our mouths daily? We work the twelve steps with God’s help, along with the use of other tools in a twelve-step program. After trying a few twelve-step programs for food addiction and continuing to relapse, the one that my Heavenly Father brought me to that has helped me break free the most, is a program called “Full of Faith”. In this program, along with working the twelve steps, each day I use a tool of planned eating that keeps me on track and gives me a daily reprieve from overeating.

No longer craving foods or sugar that my body doesn’t need, God has freed me. At my heaviest, I weighed sixty-five pounds more than I do today. In doing my part, by continuing to work my program and growing closer to Him, the weight melted off and I have come to accept and love the body God gave me.

It was for this freedom that Christ set us free [completely liberating us]; therefore keep standing firm and do not be subject again to a yoke of slavery [which you once removed]. -Galations 5:1 (AMP)

*For those of you struggling with food addiction, I highly recommend this excellent program: http://www.fulloffaith.com/