All posts tagged: creative motivation

Declaring All the Reasons You Can

It is easy and practically the given norm of humanity to find all the reasons why we ‘can’t’ and shouldn’t do a thing that has been burning in our hearts to do. We can come up with the typical lists of why’s that range from financial restrictions, age, gender, and the all too famous stumbling block, time. We see and feel the burn for more, given to us by Christ Himself, swirling within us, and yet, like Moses we begin to tell the God of Creation who has called us to ‘speak’ that our mouths don’t work, as if when He called us and put that fiery seed to go forth in us, He didn’t know the so-called odds against us. In fact, it is because of those very odds that the Lord has called us to go forth and to do things that are seemingly impossible, things that take us out of our comfort zones, things that the word and statistics say we are disqualified to even pursue. “But God chose the foolish things …

A Reason to Rejoice

“Rejoice always.” ~I Thessalonians 5:16 I‘m sure that whether you are a Christian or not, you have heard that the shortest verse in the bible is John 11:35, “Jesus wept.” While this is true on one hand, there is a verse that rivals it for the two-word title and that is a passage found in I Thessalonians 5:16, “Rejoice always”. While the two verses seem to have a world between then in meaning, I want to encourage you of how they both give us a reason to rejoice and empower us to do so in the Lord God Christ Jesus. In John 11, we find Christ Jesus at the tomb of His beloved friend, Lazarus who has passed away, and Jesus, fully understanding the grief of those around Him wept along with them. He being, fully God, and fully Man took on the role of complete friend and shared in the sufferings of those around Him even though He knew what He was capable of doing as the God of all creation. Even with His …

Think on These Things: The Art of A Focused Mind

“Finally, brethren, whatever things are true, whatever things are noble, whatever things are just, whatever things are pure, whatever things are lovely, whatever things are of good report, if there is any virtue and if there is anything praiseworthy—meditate on these things.” ~PHILIPPIANS 4:8 To think on things that are ‘good’ in the face of those things that seem to weigh our minds down seems like a call to ignore reality. If not this, many of us struggle to figure out what exactly to think on, defaulting to just, “Jesus is Good.” Now, there is nothing wrong with that thought, because it is absolutely the truth, and we oftentimes, especially in the midst of trials, need to remind ourselves, but I believe that there is a deeper meaning to it all, both the good things and Christ being the Best Thing! THINK ON THE WORD AND PROMISES In the face of hardship and tragedy, we are to think on the Word and Promises of God that He has already spoken over our circumstances. If you …

Into Rich Fulfillment: The Journey of Change

“…We went through fire and through water; But You brought us out to rich fulfillment.” ~PSALM 66:12b Trials are something that the Lord in His grace and tender mercies toward us, His beloved children, assured us we would all endure. He tells us this truth many times over in His Word, not only to assure as that we will face the process, but to encourage us that we will make it through each and every one of them and that if we hold on to Him in faith, we will come out into richness. But why the trials? Let’s be honest, none of us looks forward to struggle or resistance. The very thought of doing so goes against our human nature. But there is beauty and benefit within the struggle. Just like when one decides to pursue a healthier lifestyle, that transition is often a struggle, to say the least. Changing one’s diet, making a point to walk more, to take the stairs instead of the elevator, to go to the gym and actually lift …

Upgrade: Taking on the Mantle of Next

“And so it was, when they had crossed over, that Elijah said to Elisha, “Ask! What may I do for you, before I am taken away from you?” Elisha said, “Please let a double portion of your spirit be upon me.” So he said, “You have asked a hard thing. Nevertheless, if you see me when I am taken from you, it shall be so for you; but if not, it shall not be so.”  Then it happened, as they continued on and talked, that suddenly a chariot of fire appeared with horses of fire, and separated the two of them; and Elijah went up by a whirlwind into heaven. And Elisha saw it, and he cried out, “My father, my father, the chariot of Israel and its horsemen!” So he saw him no more. And he took hold of his own clothes and tore them into two pieces. He also took up the mantle of Elijah that had fallen from him, and went back and stood by the bank of the Jordan. Then he …

The Triumph of Transition: The Glory in Going From One Dimension to the Next

“It’s not all easy, but I think it’s all awesome.” ~KRIS LANGHAM I am pretty certain if anyone sat down and told a caterpillar the work that it was going to take not only for it to transform into a butterfly but just to able to break free of the future environment that would keep it safe–which would also soon become the very thing that would potentially hold them back and captive–that they would rethink the whole metamorphosis thing and likely stick to a flight-less existence. But then…maybe not. I think the guaranteed results of flying would be too much to resist. Nevertheless, transformation takes time and transition. Being able to fly is a right that comes from gaining power and strength from the struggle found in the process born of transition itself. If a caterpillar never struggled to break free of its cocoon–the place that once was its protection while in transition–it would never have the strength to take to the skies. There are dreams and greatness in each of us, but to see …

Taking Hold of Greatness: Being Willing to Take Steps Backward

“Sometimes doing great work requires taking several steps backward.”         ~CANDICE COATES I don’t know of a single human being throughout the span of time who has not desired some level of success and greatness. I am not talking about the greatness that world conquers sought, the empty success that only leaves you with an insatiable high for more in all the wrong ways, the kind that leaves victims wounded, and bloodied in your wake. I am talking about the great work of authentic meaning and self-expression. I am talking about that work that comes from an honest and sincere heart, that one that you can whisper to God with a smile and say, “We did good, eh?” Be it your art, your writing, your marriage, your conquering of the daily grind whereas you force yourself to say, “This is the day the Lord has made, and I will rejoice and be glad in it! I will do well today no matter the odds, no matter the discomfort.” This is the great work I …

The Secret of the Stars: Reaching For Your Dream

“No pessimist ever discovered the secret of the stars, or sailed to an uncharted land, or opened a new discovery for the human spirit.” ~HELEN KELLER The only ingredients that you need to fail in this life are Fear, Doubt, and Pessimism. All three of these are the poison that saps out our creative power and imagination. When Christ Jesus created the heavens and the earth, He did so by speaking. He spoke from His imagination. Proverbs 23:7 says as a man thinks in his heart, so is he. Proverbs further goes on to warn us that we will live by the fruit of our lips and above all else, to guard our hearts for out of it flows the source of our lives. (PROVERBS 12:14, PROVERBS 18:21, PROVERBS 4:23) When our hearts are filled with pessimism and doubt, we speak with negativity and bring forth the fruits of failure. But when we speak with faith, when we allow ourselves to dream, imagine, and do by faith, we are giving life to victory. We are …

Waging War with the Right Tools: A Word on Effective Advancement

“There are many plans in a man’s heart, but the Lord’s counsel will prevail.” ~PROVERBS 19:21 Idon’t know what to do. I seriously don’t know what to do.” These were the words I recited more than a few times during the 2019 year. I don’t know about you, but last year was a year and season of gaining new territory, creatively, physically, mentally, relationally, and spiritually. These are all great places to take possession of land but I also felt like, not only was the year truly moving at an accelerated pace but that some of the difficulties, trials, and tests I was facing were far out of my realm of knowledge or understanding. My head was spinning. Though joyful and often times happy, I was overwhelmed. I was anxious. I was out of my element. None of my usual ‘go-to’s for success an any of the aforementioned categories were working. I literally told the Lord I didn’t know what to do and He was basically like, “Of course not. This is new territory AND …

Preparing to Prosper in What Looks Like a Drought

Scrolling through the Stories feed on my author’s Instagram account, @candicecoateswrites, I came across a comedic meme that read, “So in the middle of the Civil War, someone was like “You know what this country needs? A delicious steak sauce.“.” If you are not familiar with what steak sauce I am talking about, it is good ole’ A1 Steak Sauce. Now here is the thing, the sauce, which started to get more widely known in 1862, was actually created by a European chef in Europe and wasn’t even introduced to America until 1895.** Although not American in origin, and actually created three decades before the Civil War, the idea and even deeper truth behind the comedic meme still stands.** What is that meaning? That we must be willing to create and pursue our vision even in the midst of tremulous times. We must have the faith to plan beyond the drought. NOT HINDERED BY THE MOUNTAINS A beautiful example of this can be found in the life and love story of Black American Nurse in …