When you hike further than you knew you could…

This year, I did something I had never done before. I hiked to the peak of a mountain. I had never been hiking before, and being a flatlander, I certainly had never been so high above sea level. On that hike, God did a lot in me. In my every step, He stripped away fear, taught me how to enjoy process, what it means to focus with determination without over-exertion, and worked deeply into my soul the reality of relying on His strength and protection.

The day before Thanksgiving, I went on another hike. I was super excited, thinking that it was going to be a walk in the park. I had no idea that it would be hilly-er, and a longer distance than my first hike. I also had no idea I would dunk my foot perfectly into a stream and have to hike the way with a sponge of a shoe. Lol.

I keep an open dialogue with God at all times. Somewhere along the way, I had a specific chat with God, wondering if I did not conquer this trail, would it mean I accepted defeat? Would it mean I am weak? Would it mean I am giving up? What would I be giving up? Would it mean I am smart for saying I cannot do it, or would it mean I simply do not recognize my own strength, and the strength available to me from Him?

“It wouldn’t be defeat, Cassidy. But you’ll have to face this again, eventually. Why not now? Why not?”

All I could think was, “I conquered that other mountain. This one is easier! I know I can do it!” and settled it in me that as long as I had the available time to properly pace myself, I would do it. 

Instead of dealing with fear, God dealt a lot within me about the lie that I am a burden to others. I felt like a burden to the whole group, especially those who stayed behind with me. God would catch me every time I would make a negative comment about myself, 

“Well, if I’d just exercise more

Well, if I’d brought more water–

Well, if I’d remembered to eat–“


“Yeah Cassidy, if you’d done those things, it would’ve been a bit easier. But you didn’t. So quite beating yourself up. These people are willing to stick by you and help you, to carry your things, and share their food. They could go ahead, but they choose to stay by you, to help you. You are not a burden!”

I realized I was not alone, and that these people enjoyed being around me regardless of my weakness. I had to change my mindset to the fact that even when I need others’ help, I can still add value to their life. It does not mean I am a burden. It just means they are recieving from me in a different form. 

In one simple moment of turning the corner, I realize it was all worth it. “Finally. We made it.” The view was stunning. The people, even more amazing! “Yay! You made it!” 

On the way down was easy peasy!
The next day, I find out that it was a tougher hike than my first mountain. I was stunned and in awe. God said,

“See! You’re stronger than you know!”

Just because mountains in life seem like they should be easier to hike, does not mean that they are. So when you are feeling weak, just remember every other mountain, hill, or rock you have conquered. You will soon find yourself conquering rougher, and tougher things with God.


-1998girl

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Purity Week!

Ahhh, Purity Week!

Recently here at BSSM, we went through what is known as “Purity Week”.

Other names for it are “Freedom Week”, “Redemption Week”, “Sex Week”, and “Moral Revolution Week.” (At least, those are all the different names I heard it called.) I like all of them, honestly, but my favourite is Purity Week.

Purity is probably the topic I am most passionate about. I love talking about it because it is such a sensitive topic in the church. I love all the vulnerability surrounding it, and I love shedding light on it.  I absolutely LOVED Purity Week because they shed light on so much that the world misuses in the dark! They are so open and vulnerable about EVERYTHING. I cannot even count how many times “sex”, “orgasm”, “masturbation”, “penis”, “vagina”, etc were said during Purity Week. I love it! The world wants to pervert all of it, but the truth is that God created us, He designed sex, and it is a very good thing! And purity does not just remain something for sexuality, it is a lifestyle.

So, here is my story regarding purity, and only a bit of what I learned during Purity Week:

Purity, sex, and everything else has always been an open, safe topic at home. Growing up, Daddy & Momma always said that if I ever had any questions, I could ask them. So, I am thankful to say I was given a safe environment to talk and learn about it as much as I wanted to.

At around 12-13, I began reading the Bible on my own and searched out scripture regarding sex, sexuality, purity, etc. My main reasoning was because I wanted to know what the actual line was for any sexual activity outside of marriage. I have never done anything sexual with a person, but at that age I did have lust in my heart and had an addiction to masturbation since I was 7. (Glory to God, I was totally and completely freed from it earlier this year!) Unfortunately, instead of going to Daddy & Momma with my questions regarding my issues, thanks to anxiety, I searched the internet to see if I was normal and what the world had to say. The world tried to convince me that masturbation was healthy and normal, and that as a Christian everything but sex was ok before marriage. I found different answers in the Bible, though.

I quickly learned that we are not supposed to lust after people, that we actually do not have to, and that any sexual activity outside of marriage is impure. Eventually in my struggle with addiction to masturbation, I asked God why I felt it was not right. “God, why isn’t this right even though I’m not lusting after anyone when I do it?” He showed me that it is because masturbation is not what we were designed for. It is a cheap cop-out to what he wants us to freely and fully experience and express inside the safety of the marriage covenant. 

Purity week confirmed a lot of what I already knew, and brought more depth to it.

They taught me practical things, such as the importance of getting your needs met in a healthy way. This means:

  • feeding yourself decent food, 
  • getting enough rest, 
  • having a bedtime, 
  • having community around you to help keep you accountable. (Accountability is described here as “Account for your ability, not your disability.”) 
  • Making sure you are cultivating healthy, intimate relationships with both genders. (Intimacy here is not a sexual thing.)

They also taught the sacredness of sex. That:

  •  inside of marriage it is not about getting to a goal, but about getting to know each other. 
  •  sexual intimacy is spirit, soul, and body. It bonds you in every way. 
  •  porn ruins your sexuality and skews your view of sex and people.

I also love the way they answered one of the most asked questions: “Why does God give us a sex drive way before we are able to get married and have sex?” It is because we are supposed to learn how to manage our sex drive! Because when you do get married, you will have to manage it even more so! Your spouse is not your sex slave, and you will also be choosing your spouse every single time there is temptation to run after someone or something else.

I do have to say, though, my favourite thing I learned during Purity Week is that Christians are actually supposed to have the best sex lives!! Haha I love it!! You know why? It is because, just as I said earlier, God created us, He designed sex, and it is a very good thing!

-1998girl

61 days

I have not blogged in a long time for the simple fact that I forgot about it. Every now and again the idea to blog might pop up, but I would shrug it off thinking I did not have anything worthy of writing about.

I thought about it, and decided to go to my pages to look over what I had previously posted. God showed me–rather, reminded me that I actually have a gift of writing and taking pictures. I share these things on regular social media, but God showed me there is something special about my blogs. They are specific domains set aside to show off these gifts of mine, and in that way, glorify Him. 


Because I shrugged my shoulders, saying, “I have nothing worthy of sharing.”, not only did I choose to believe an outright lie, therefore empowering the liar; I withheld glory that God deserves to recieve. Glory that He can only recieve through me using and celebrating these beautiful gifts He has given to me. He gave them to me knowing that only I could express them in my own unique way. How beautiful is that?

I love this process, though, of taking something once thought to be negative (such as equating the celebration of one’s gifts to arrogance) and flipping it over to God’s perspective. To a place where He is speaking only love and life to you. It is certainly a testament to the renewing of my mind. On that note…


I made it to my dream school, Bethel School of Supernatural Ministry. The journey so far has been utterly amazing. In fact, I feel as though I may never, ever have the proper vocabulary to express just how intensely amazing and exciting it really is. It is not just about having my dream come true, but also the fact that it is the exact fulfilment of this scripture that I declared over my life for quite some time:

Ephesians 3:16-21

I pray that from his glorious, unlimited resources he will empower us with inner strength through his Spirit. Then Christ will make his home in our hearts as we trust in him. Our roots will grow down into God’s love and keep us strong. And may we have the power to understand, as all God’s people should, how wide, how long, how high, and how deep his love is. May we experience the love of Christ, though it is too great to understand fully. Then we will be made complete with all the fullness of life and power that comes from God. Now all glory to God, who is able, through his mighty power at work within us, to accomplish infinitely more than we might ask or think. Glory to him in the church and in Christ Jesus through all generations forever and ever! Amen.

(Emphasis and edits by me.)

I mean, honestly, come on. That is ridiculously awesome. 

I have been here since August 28th, registration day was the 30th, a party with my Revival Group on the 31st, and the official first day of school was September 5th.

In the 61 days that I have been here, my life has been completely transformed. There are certain days that I regard as larger markers, such as the 28th, the 30th, the 31st, the 5th, and so on. However, every single day God marks me in a new and unique way. He is always loving me in ways I did not know before. He is always showing me new things (rather, things new to me) about himself and myself. He is also always showing me how to express myself, which is actually the fulfillment of the very first word of encouragement/prophecy I received here. (It was given to me by one of my lovely third years upon meeting him the very first time.)

A few of those things God has been showing me, though, in no particular order…

  • The more I love my body, the better I treat it. When I choose to see my body as the beautiful work of art it is, personally formed and fashioned by the King himself, I treat it better by joyfully being active, and enjoying good foods 90% of the time. (The other 10% of the time I am enjoying food that feeds my soul, such as chocolate. Lol.)
  • I love people, A LOT. Super duper immensely and intensely. Somehow I always have in mind that each person is so loved by God, that there are people out there who would give anything to have just a second with them, and I feel this intense honour for each induvidual.
  • There are people out there who absolutely and genuinely love me. People who would give anything to have just a second with me. 
  • God loves me absolutely. The God of the universe gave everything, his all, all of himself, all of his eternity, just to have a second with me.
  • Vulnerability is different from transparency. I love both, but vulnerability is basically showing your junk and your greatness for people to speak into your life to help and celebrate you. Transparency can be used like a glass wall. You can let others see everything, but not allow anyone in. 
  • Grace means the world to people. It is vitally important that you extend grace everywhere. Beginning with your own thoughts, “Oh, I do not like it when they tap their foot–wait, grace!–they actually could be nervous or something.” Practicing it in the little things will prepare your heart for the bigger things, such as when someone intentionally tries to hurt you. Your heart will already be in the position to say “Hey, that was not right at all, but you are actually better than that, and I love you and forgive you.” You can see them for who they are in Christ and not get caught on the things that are less than their identity in Jesus. There is a reason we are saved by grace through faith. 

I could go on and on and on and on and ooooooonnnnnnnn about all the stuff I have learned here in school. All the stuff God is speaking to me right now, and all the heart surgery he is doing on me. I honestly am beginning to have a slight understanding of how, if everything Jesus did was written down, the whole world could not contain all the books. It is totally possible for the world to contain my entire life and thoughts, but I feel as though I could write about a million blog posts just off these 61 days. 


In these 61 days, I have faced an interesting financial situation, of which through family and friends I have been totally supported. I have heard more languages than I can count on one hand. I have slightly settled into my household, enjoying every moment with my roomies, who are basically my sisters now. I have connected with my amazing Revival Groupies, whom I love dearly, and are family to me. I have worshipped harder than I thought I ever could, danced freer than I ever knew was possible, loved more than I ever have in my entire lifetime, hiked a freakin’ mountain, and gone so much deeper with God. I have seen, and heard, and experienced so much. I will have testimonies for the generations. 


Taste and see that the Lord is good. Oh, the joys of those who take refuge in him!

Psalms 34:8 NLT


-1998girl

Luke 6:38

​Give, and you will receive. Your gift will return to you in full—pressed down, shaken together to make room for more, running over, and poured into your lap. The amount you give will determine the amount you get back. ” -Luke 6:38 (NLT) -1998girl

Fight

“God does not create a man and put a dream in him. He creates a dream and wraps a man around it. You are God’s dream in the flesh!” 

-Lou Engle


Dreams are much more than mere ideas or ambitions. When you are aligned with the Father’s heart, you fight for your dreams, which means you fight to fulfill destiny.


When you are in a battle, you do not sit there. You do not stay still, you do not get overwhelmed, you do not break down. You move. You fight. You do every single thing in your power and ability to trample the enemy.


I wonder, though, how many battles we have lost because we focus on the enemy instead of God?


Think about it. 


If we are always thinking about God…worshipping Him, talking with Him, praying with Him, reading with Him, walking with Him… We actually would not be focused on the enemy at all during a battle. We would just be running him over. I dunno about you, but whenever I am super excited to see someone and they are across the room, not a single person between us stands a chance at getting in the way. People might get trampled, honestly lol.


And maybe that is how we are supposed to fight. It is in the midst of our pursuit of God that we trample upon lions, cobras, fierce dragons, and serpants. 


-1998girl

When bad thoughts come in swinging

Today was one of those days that things like disapointment, discouragement, depression, and anxiety really tried to get at me.

Even though I have been delivered from axiety and all that stuffs, there are still days they do not just “come knocking at my door” as simple, quiet, passing thoughts. Instead, they burst in swinging with everything they have. 

“You’re stupid!”
“Life sucks…”
“Nothing matters!”
“Everything matters, be obsessive!”
“You can’t laugh!”
“You shouldn’t laugh!”
“You can’t do anything right!”
“Worry about what others think of you!”
“They don’t care!”
“I hate this!”
“I hate myself!”
“Don’t do that, they’ll be annoyed by you!”
“They don’t actually like you!”
“Shut up! Clam up!”
“Don’t be yourself!”
“You bug people too much!”
“You’re too enthusiastic and optimistic!”
“They don’t want to be around you!”
“No one loves you!!!”

However, they are no match. I disagree with these thoughts, they are not true. Every time I am attacked like this, I find that the answer is simply to marvel at the goodness of God. Spend time with Jesus. Rest in His presence, in the heart of the Father.


1998girl

Mind-boggling

As of lately God has had me focus in on Psalm 91. Particularly the part where it says “…so you won’t even hurt your foot on a stone.”
How many times to people stub their toes?!

Yet the truth is “If you make the Lord your refuge…”

“…so you won’t even hurt your foot on a stone.”


The more I focus in on it, the more I want to cry pure tears of joy, because all I can think is ..“Wow, God, You are THAT good…” With all honesty, I find this mind-boggling. And it is absolutely amazing!!


I am not putting the full scripture out there because I want to encourage you to go read Psalm 91. Do not just read it. Speak it. Declare it. It is pure truth. It is important that we get this truth down in our hearts! It is not about memorizing it well enough to quote every word, period, comma, and quotation mark. It is about getting God’s truth settled in you so much that when you are squeezed by lies, nothing but God’s truth comes out!!



-1998girl