The Power to Change The Hardest Day

Written by Jackie Tinkler

It had been a long day at the home office and I decided to take a break. Facing deadlines, fixing problems and relational conflicts have taken their toll and I just didn’t want to fight it anymore. I’ll pick it back up in a minute.

Most of us in truth fight battles everyday. Oh, my battles may look a little different than yours, but the underlying theme is the same. Feel bad, worry, condemnation, press on my reserves, live in fear, diminish my faith, steal my joy and my personal favorite, overwhelm my soul.

So, what do I do when after I “Raise a Halleluiah”, bind the enemy, cast my care and claim scripture verses?

I recently traveled for business to Nashville, Tennessee. It was really the first time I had ever stayed away alone. Completely alone. When I tell you that hotel room was a lonely box, I mean it was awful. I prayed all the way over, and I even had others pray for me, and yet my eyes couldn’t help but see the sterile orange and gray walls before me. “Oh Lord, get me through these three days.”

I knew I had to face this and I couldn’t leave. There would be times of isolation when not attending my training, so something amazing came to my mind. Jackie, change the atmosphere of the room. I know it sounds crazy but I took out my most favorite clothing pieces and hung them on the outside of the door, I displayed my costume jewelry like it was on display at an outdoor French market. (put away of course when I had to leave the room) I opened the pages of my favorite magazines to inspiring photographs and piled my books, notebooks and bible on the bedside table as if they were being displayed on the most opulent bookcase. Praise music and Christian teaching filled the air 24/7 through the day and night. I changed the atmosphere and was able to do what was hard to do…stay.

You might say “Who would go to that kind of trouble” This girl! Why? Because God gives us the grace to do what is hard.

Jesus changed the atmosphere from storms to peace with one word. He changed the atmosphere at a wedding when it looked like everyone might go home. He changed the atmosphere on the darkest day of his life and came back resurrected in power.

You know what? God’s love will always intersect our hardest days. His sustaining power, his amazing grace gives us what we need to face those not so fun days and no matter what it looks like, we always have the power to change it.

Jackie Tinkler is the Co-Founder and Ministry Development Director of Something More and lives in Birmingham, Alabama. She has been ministering to women for 20 years as a Women’s Ministry Director, Counselor and Producer. She is co-writing a Women’s Small Group Study “Something Beautiful” and when not leading women to freedom can be found worshipping at Church of the Highlands, decorating her friends homes, enjoying time with her family and chocolate lab Nelson or sitting in the balcony at the Alabama Theatre.

Sorry, I Can’t Today, I’m Binge Watching and Eating Popcorn

Written by Jackie Tinkler

Recently, a friend of mine and I were talking over a delicious Shrimp Po Boy and Fried Green Tomatoes. As we enjoyed our lunch, we found ourselves commenting about how some days we just don’t feel very “up”. After we shared all of the vitamins, supplements, lotions and potions we were taking to feel good, it hit me. I said ” You know, I bet you will feel much better when you pick up that paint brush again”

It made me think of endless days of energy as a kid when I pretty much had no responsibility and had hours to color. I loved to color! Why don’t I color anymore? ( The Notebook anyone?) Remember when there was less to do? Now we have bills to pay, errands to run, meetings, dinners, obligations, climb the ladder of success, pray for and check on everyone, expectations….yada yada yada. I’m sure you can add to the list.

The problem is we don’t take the time, and I mean, it’s there and will require TAKING SOME THINGS OFF OF THE CALENDAR. It’s called “down time.” You may have heard of it or you may be thinking “but my kids need me to run them everywhere lady!” I get that, why not grab an adult coloring book, your favorite book, bible and journal and get lost in someone else’s story while you wait?

I remember Joyce Meyer telling a story where she was complaining about being overwhelmed and God reminded her that she was the one in charge of her calendar!

In this season of empty nest for me, I’ve decided if it includes fellowship, God’s call, smiling, getting lost in the moment, growing spiritually, adds enjoyment and pleases God, then I’m in. If it overwhelms, vexes my spirit, makes me unhappy or feel pressured to be there or has no fruit….then it goes! Nothing more gets added to my calendar of ministry, family time, sacrifices and responsibilities unless these apply. I’ve also learned to schedule in rest. Say this with me “Sorry, I can’t today, I’m binge watching and eating popcorn” Sorry, I’m creating a masterpiece” “Sorry, I’m dancing in my living room”, or “Sorry, I’m spending extra time with God today”.

The truth is we are no good to anyone stressed out, overwhelmed, unhappy, and sick.

Paul knew the value of wholeness when he said “We’re the best of friends, and I pray for good fortune in everything you do, and for your good health and that your everyday affairs prosper as well as your soul” 3 John 1:2 The Message

Take a moment to comment with those things you used to do and loved! What will it take for you to enjoy those things again? I challenge you to go to your calendar and take one thing off and add in something you have been meaning to do!

Time is too precious and believe it or not, God does want us to enjoy life!

Jackie Tinkler is the Co-Founder and Ministry Development Director of Something More and lives in Birmingham, Alabama. She has been ministering to women for 20 years as a Women’s Ministry Director, Counselor and Producer. She is co-writing a Women’s Small Group Study “Something Beautiful” and when not leading women to freedom can be found worshipping at Church of the Highlands, decorating her friends homes, enjoying time with her family and chocolate lab Nelson or sitting in the balcony at the Alabama Theatre.

Seriously, It’s the Little Things

Today, my sweet husband of 24 years woke up with a sore throat and cough. I knew something was up when I got up to a very dark house and no movement. He is usually up very early singing with the birds (yes, morning person!) I found him in the guest bedroom under a pile of pillows and one very large dog. I hate to see him sick, but selfishly I thought, I don’t want to catch this! After I got over myself, I got dressed, threw a ball cap on and drove to the corner drugstore to pick up some Airborne and M&M’s to help him feel better.

When I returned, I removed the top from the Airborne and put the M&M’s in a little glass cup and carried it in to him. By now, he had decided to work from home and he looked so cute sitting at his desk in his plaid shirt and L. L. Bean slippers. I joyfully placed his “meds” on the desk and commented that no one at work would do this for him, of which a GIANT smile came across his face and I mean GIANT SMILE!

You see, its in the little things we do that mean the most. In this world of doing everything large, where we feel we have to one up, go over the top, and strive to impress, none of that compares to Jesus’ words where he said “It’s best to start small. Give a cool cup of water to someone who is thirsty, for instance. The smallest act of giving or receiving makes you a true apprentice. You won’t lose out on a thing.” Matthew 10:42 The Message

I learned a sweet lesson in all of this! Just be sweet, just be kind, keep it simple and just eat M&M’s… they make everything better.

Jackie Tinkler is the Co-Founder and Ministry Development Director of Something More and lives in Birmingham, Alabama. She has been ministering to women for 20 years as a Women’s Ministry Director, Counselor and Producer. She is co-writing a Women’s Small Group Study “Something Beautiful” and when not leading women to freedom can be found worshipping at Church of the Highlands, decorating her friends homes, enjoying time with her family and chocolate lab Nelson or sitting in the balcony at the Alabama Theatre.

When It’s Hard to Forgive

Written by Jackie Tinkler

The anger that arose every time this person’s name was mentioned was huge. I mean, they have caused me pain and unnecessary loss and I am right to feel this way. There is absolutely no way I can move forward in a relationship with this person and there is no way I’m going to like them anytime soon.

Every chance it came up in conversation, I said something to bring them low, not in a malicious way, but as way to continue to keep my guard up. After all, everyone would agree with me. The hilarious part of this is that I thought God agreed with me too. He saw what was going on and I’m sure God feels the same. This person has hurt me and they deserve it. WRONG!

Are you feeling it too? Someone has hurt you in a BIG way and you can’t let it go because you deserve justice. So, we harden our hearts and tell all they did every chance we have. The walls of bitterness keep us protected and keep the “bad” people away from us because we are not going to give them an inch.

While sitting at my kitchen table one day and talking with a friend, I let it all out. I told her everything I was feeling and I heard myself say these words” I am justified!” The very second I said the words, I realized where my heart had been; I had been walking the road of anger and unforgiveness. I could not believe it! I can’t tell you how justified I felt in my anger. I was blinded to how much I had let it in and how miserable I felt. And even though, what they did or continue to do is not right, I did not have the right to not forgive. In the same second I said I was justified, I said these words too “I guess, I need to give them a break” as my voice broke.

I realized how ugly my thoughts were and how sad it made me to think I was hurting them and God. How can I not forgive, when my Savior Jesus forgave me. How can I not extend grace when he gives me grace every day? Jesus was betrayed too. Jesus was slandered, rejected, overlooked, and at times, not even his family believed in him. So, I say again, How can I not forgive, when he forgave much worse.

I asked God to forgive me at that very second! I was truly broken by the words “I am justified.”

I was set free that day, really free. Now, when this persons name is mentioned I’m filled with a compassion I hadn’t had before. I let my Jesus heal me and take the pain to fill me with his love. I now pray for this person regularly and find ways to bless them. I’m not required to be their best friend, but I am called to love them.

All I can say is Jesus, thank you for giving us a break. You paid it all and loved us extravagantly when we didn’t deserve it.

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Jackie Tinkler is the Co-Founder and Ministry Development Director of Something More and lives in Birmingham, Alabama. She has been ministering to women for 20 years as a Women’s Ministry Director, Counselor and Producer. She is co-writing a Women’s Small Group Study “Something Beautiful” and when not leading women to freedom can be found worshipping at Church of the Highlands, decorating her friends homes, enjoying time with her family and chocolate lab Nelson or sitting in the balcony at the Alabama Theatre.

May I Have This Dance?

Written by Jody Davis Lybrand

How do you perceive God?
The Lord God is with me. He is The Mighty Warrior that rescues, defends and preserves me. He takes great delight in me and He is filled with gladness as I draw near to Him. His love quiets me with a great peace. We dance a dance of joy as He sings a triumphant song over me. (Zephaniah 3:17, my translation)
Can you envision that? Almighty, creator God, maker and sustainer of all that is…dancing…with YOU!  Is that possible? Does He love that much? Or do we think of God as the Great Grinch and Party Popper?
Consider creation, we see the majestic mountains, turquoise oceans and blue or starry skies. We have magnificent diversity of trees and beautiful flowers! Would God give us such wonders if he didn’t want us to take joy in it? Would He give us the ability to laugh, to enjoy music, then say don’t? Could it be that we need to reassess our perception of God?
I wonder if we think, out of some innate sense of guilt, God is out to get us.
Yes, we are all born with a sin nature that separates us. (Romans 3:23) But remember to balance that with the great sacrifice He provided to bridge that vast chasm. (John 3:16)This selfless act of God and the belief in Jesus is a gift called grace, amazing grace, supernatural grace, abundant grace, sufficient grace! This means we receive “the total cancellation of our sins—all because of the cascading riches of his grace”. (Ephesians 1:7b TPT)
Just as He communed with Adam and Eve, He longs for that with each of us. He wants to be that real to you. He wants to do life with you!

What if we looked at life as one long dance. Could you think of a better partner than your Creator? The one who knows everything about you, loves you, cheers for you and wants the best for you. Remember, above all, God is love. Its not something he does, it’s who he is!

He loves you without limits! He lavishes us with his grace and mercy! His request is waiting. All you need to do is turn to him, accept and believe it.
Read that first verse again!   Picture yourself accepting His outstretched hand, spinning around the dance floor of life and all eternity!

 

Jodi Davis Lybrand is a lifelong resident of Shelby County. She is married and has raised two wonderful sons, has a beautiful daughter-in-law and 3 of the most adorable grandchildren ever!
Her favorites include playing with those awesome grand sweeties, enjoying long walks and sunsets, visiting with friends, old and new, painting and working on her bucket list!
A Bible teacher for 30 years, teaching preschool to senior adults (before she was one!) Jodi jests that she can teach you a Bible lesson in sixty seconds or sixty minutes! Most of all she loves to encourage people through the truths found in God’s holy word.

 

Bring on ‘The Happy’

Written by GeNeise Fuller – aka Lady Ge’

pink and yellow flowers

As a Something More Writer, I understand more and more the mission of bringing ‘The Happy’ into the lives of hurting women.
Let’s face it; all of us go through things in life that’s sometimes isn’t pleasant. I call them ‘Issues of Life’ (Prov. 4:23b).  Which means, we all endure heartache, pain, disappointments, set backs, loss, on and on.

I am realizing more and more in order to get to ‘The Happy’, you have to deal with the pain; and that my friend isn’t easy at times. But I have a little slogan that help keeps me Free in my thinking, and it says, ‘If you want to be healed, you’ve got to be real!’

You have to get to the point where you’re willing to open up (to a trusted source) and let someone know what’s going on with you! For example, in order for a Doctor to properly diagnosis you and possibly prescribe medication, you have to tell him/her where you hurt; where the pain is located. If you’re not upfront and honest or if you keep silent, two (2) things could possibly happen:
  1. The doctor won’t be able to help you at all, especially if you are silent.
  2. You may get a wrong diagnosis if you are not honest and that can be harmful or even worst, fatal!
In my Newly released Book: When Is It MY Time? A Poetic Courtroom Battle with God, I surprised a lot of people with the content. It was a side of me that anyone rarely saw because I was the one who often brought ‘The Happy’.
This Book of Poetry expresses raw feelings and raw emotions without holding back. I was hurt, disappointed, angry and fed up!  I was asking God, When Is It MY Time? When is it my time for love, for the abundant life and for that right relationship! I wanted some answers so I created a courtroom style setting and presented my case to the Only One I knew that could answer those questions.
One of the greatest things about it all is that I was open and honest with God. I did not approach Him with disrespect but as a woman with true and raw emotions searching for answers to my question. And God, with His great love, mercy and wisdom, comforted me, gave me hope for my life and put me back on ‘straight street’ sort of speak.
The book was freeing for me because I wasn’t afraid to tell my story. Do you know why? Because ALL of us have gone through hurt, pain, loss, disappointment and so on. With that, I knew I wasn’t alone in telling my story. The details of it maybe different from yours but the emotions are the same.
In conclusion, I want to leave you with these three (3) ‘GeNuggets’ that has set me Free! It allows me to Bring ‘The Happy’ everywhere I go. I invite you to give it a try.
  1. Realize that you are NOT alone! You are not the only woman going through or have been hurt. So, no one can legitimately judge you.
  2. Find a trusted friend or organization to share your pain or struggle. Better yet, share them with the Lord first. Open up to Him and He will lead you to the right person or place.
  3. My Motto for my Facebook Live Group, Thirsty Thursdays (Poems that Heals) is, “Keep Your Head Up and Do You!” — When you keep your head up, the enemy has a hard time keeping you down. And, when you Do You, You are being true to whom the Creator created you to be. No one can do you better than you! You are a Masterpiece! Recognize The Power of YOU! *
Listen, I would love to know how you’re doing. Let’s stay connected.
Cheerfully,
Lady Ge’

IMG_6152GeNeise Fuller is a Singer/Songwriter and Poetry Therapist. Her innovative music is filled with words of Hope, Joy, and Victory and her poetry incites raw boldness and healing to readers and listeners alike. Her GeNotes’ blog posts are written articles designed to help encourage and empower hurting women. She is also Founder/CEO of A.C.C.E.S.S. Organization, Inc. A company that is Approaching the Cause of Children Exposed to Secondhand Smoke through Education, Visualization & Communication as well as a dance coach and dancer. She has written a book “When Is It MY Time” launching Spring 2019.

 

Connect with me at:

Facebook.com/geneiseink

Twitter.com/geneiseink

Instagram.com/geneiseink

geneise@geneiseink.com *For details of the Poem: The Power of YOU!

www.geneiseink.com For Book details: When Is It MY Time?

Why finding out “Less is More” finally gave me the life I’ve been looking for

alphabets camera card desk

Written by Jackie Tinkler

 

“He must become greater; I must become less.”

John 3:30 (NIV)

 
 I’m a “stuff” girl.    A blank wall, an empty corner, an unaccessorized table top, well, it appears like something is missing.  I’ve tried to go “minimal” or “neutral” but I always end up putting all of my “stuff” out again.
A few years ago, I asked a decorator friend to restyle my home.  After about an hour of walking from room to room, ooing and ahhing about wall colors, accessories and pillows, she suddenly turned to me and said…”You don’t need another thing, Jackie. You already have enough.” I said, “I don’t need another thing? Are you sure?”  My heart sank, because I was SURE I needed something more!  Just something that would make it that much better than what it already was.  To be honest, I already had way too much!
What it really needed was “less” not more.  A concept I was just not familiar with or liked.  Somewhere the  voice of my heart screamed  “This isn’t enough!”  The idea of having it all or having more fulfilled a void I didn’t even know was there.  As I heard the Lord whisper… “make room,” I cringed a little. What I didn’t realize was if I cleared away the clutter, it would give my “home sweet home” a new life.   I reluctantly cleared away my things and left only what I absolutely loved, and you know what?  As I stepped back, holding my breath, I saw it for the first time… the warmth.  Not because of the stuff left in it, but because my eyes could now focus on the beauty from the things that truly brought value.

Dear sister, are you in a season of want? Are you covering up your pain with stuff?   Maybe if you make room for something different, something unexpected…something more, you will let go of the disappointment when no one called, the hurt when you found out they lied, the betrayal when they were unfaithful, or the pressure to be and do more.

Let your heart be filled with authenticity again.
Photo by Bich Tran on Pexels.com

Hear God’s whispering ” Sweet lady, you become less and I’ll be the More” 
Here are three ways that will help you unclutter your heart and mind:
  1.  Clear away all things that are taking up room that compete with your beautiful purpose.  This includes those things you are doing that are bringing no value or fruit to your life.
  2.  Ask Jesus what “piece” of your life has been hidden beneath the chaos that brings Him the most Glory.  What is it that blesses the lives of others but you have not made time for by bringing it to the forefront.
  3. Find a quiet place or time to reevaluate your priorities.  There will be things you need to declutter, clear and purge to  make room for God’s something more.

Lastly…

“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.”  Hebrews 12:1 NIV
If you let it go, God will give you MORE than you could have ever imagined or dreamed. 
white and pink flowers beside a canister

Jackie Tinkler is the Co-Founder and Ministry Development Director of Something More and lives in Birmingham, Alabama. She has been ministering to women for 20 years as a Women’s Ministry Director, Counselor and Producer. She is co-writing a Women’s Small Group Study “Something Beautiful” and when not leading women to freedom can be found worshipping at Church of the Highlands, decorating her friends homes, enjoying time with her family and chocolate lab Nelson or sitting in the balcony at the Alabama Theatre.

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