“This is why you must take up the full armor of God, so that you may be able to resist in the evil day, having prepared everything, to take your stand.”
My 5 year old son enjoys math and will randomly ask me different addition problems throughout the day. Recently, he was asking me what eight plus eight equals. I told him that it was sixteen and very confused, he looked at me and said, “No, I said what is eight plus eight?” I gave him the same answer, and then he questioned me again, saying, “Are you sure?” At that moment, because he kept doubting me, I started to doubt myself too, thinking maybe I told him the wrong answer. After taking a moment, I reassured him that sixteen was, in fact, the right answer.
As I sat there, finding it humorous that I let my 5 year old cause me to doubt a math fact that I had been taught my whole life, I realized how easily it is for us to be swayed in our thinking. Whether it’s our culture, the enemy, or our personal worries and unbelief, it is so easy for us to doubt the truth of God’s Word. We can easily find ourselves questioning things that we know to be true, some of which we have been taught our whole lives.
God knows that we will deal with doubt, which is why, in His wonderful grace, He reminds us all throughout the Bible to be steadfast and on guard. We can do that by daily reading His Word, memorizing Scripture, and spending time in prayer so that we will not be easily swayed by other teachings or beliefs that are thrown at us. Ephesians 6:13 says, “This is why you must take up the full armor of God, so that you may be able to resist in the evil day, having prepared everything, to take your stand.” When we are consistently reading the Bible and spending time in our relationship with God, it will strengthen us for when those doubts try to creep in. We will more easily be able to spot the lies in our thinking and combat them with the truth. Even Jesus was tempted by Satan in the wilderness to deviate from the truth, but Jesus fought those lies by quoting Scripture.
It’s like the familiar story that is told about the person whose job it is to recognize counterfeit money. The way they become so good at it is by taking time to truly study what the real dollar and coin look and feel like. That way, when something counterfeit is in front of them, they can quickly realize it, because it differs from the real thing. In John 10:4-5, Jesus gives a similar illustration about sheep with their shepherd: “The sheep follow him because they recognize his voice. They will never follow a stranger; instead they will run away from him, because they don’t recognize the voice of strangers.” When we are so familiar with truth, it will be easier to flee from the lies of this world and not doubt the Word of God.
My precious husband, Bill, and I have been planted in Fort Myers, Florida for almost 35 years. As a newly married couple, God most graciously had placed people in both of our jobs to share Christ with us. Its hard to believe it has been almost 34 years since we asked Jesus into our hearts! Bill and I have been blessed with four children, 3 daughters, then a son. These blessings came quickly, all within 6 years!! During these years I'm so thankful I was able to be part of women's ministry classes at our church, helping me to grow in my walk with Him. Then came the day when I was asked that question that stretched me way outside of my comfort zone...will you teach a class? Its hard to believe that I have now been teaching more than 20 years. Bill and I love to travel, most of the time going to visit our 9 grandchildren, oh ya, and their parents! I also love reading, walking and hanging out with some very special young moms in Beloved that bless my socks off!
Julie is a Kansas girl who resides in sunny Southwest Florida. She's been married to her husband Sean for 23 years and they share two boys ages 21 & 17. She enjoys baking and biking, but her absolute favorite thing is snow skiing which is a little difficult to do in a sandy 80 degree land.
She became a follower of Christ at age 10. She loves studying and teaching God's Word. She has a passion for encouraging moms to love and follow Jesus.
Beth grew up in a loving home; however, in her early 20s she faced a very lonely time. During that time, she cried out to God and asked “If You are real, please show yourself to me!” God met her where she was and she trusted in the Lord Jesus at that time. Her life verse and desire is “no matter what happens, to conduct herself in a manner worthy of the gospel.” Philippians 1:27
Beth now resides in Tampa, Florida with her husband Larry. The Lord has blessed them by blending their family of five children. They currently have eight grandchildren and are hoping that there will be more grandchildren in the future.
Donna accepted Jesus as her Savior at the age of nine and has been amazed at God’s goodness and faithfulness throughout her life. She has been blessed to have had many mentors through each season of life, who have shown her what trusting God looks like. Donna and her husband, Bryan, make their home in central Arkansas. They have five grown children and are grandparents to wonderful grandchildren. Donna enjoys spending time with her family, laughing with friends (usually over coffee), going for long walks with her husband, and reading a good book (which may also be accompanied by a cup of coffee).
Sarah is a true Florida Cracker. She was born and raised in Southwest Florida. At the age of 6, Sarah accepted Jesus as her Lord and Savior, and she hasn't looked back since. Hebrews 13:8 is one of her favorite verses, "Jesus Christ is the same yesterday, today, and forever." Eating delicious desserts, spending time with her family and friends, and teaching people about Jesus are a few of the things she enjoys to do in her spare time.
Sarah has been married to her best friend and husband, Brandon, for 7 years. They have been blessed with one beautiful, determined son, Asher, who keeps them on their toes. Sarah and her family live in the Tampa area. They love exploring their community together, family hugs, and eating pizza whenever possible.
Katie Flint just recently moved back home to Fort Myers, Florida with her husband, Ryan and two children, Collins and Madden. At the age of 5, Katie accepted Jesus Christ to be the Lord and Savior of her life, after attending Vacation Bible School. Through each phase of her life, God has shown her that He alone is trustworthy. The verse that has been her life source is Psalm 46:10- “Be still and know that I am God.”
She is a stay-at-home mom and enjoys exercising and baking. She has been married to her husband Ryan for almost 9 years, who is her high school sweetheart. They enjoy trying new restaurants, family trips to the beach, and relaxing at home.
Marsha grew up in a small rural town in upstate New York. In 2006, after finishing college, she moved to sunny SW Florida where she met her, now husband, Shawn. Together they enjoy spending family time with their two fun-loving toddler boys Zachariah and Kairos.
Marsha enjoys living an active lifestyle, which is helpful, considering that her favorite hobby is baking.
Though she attended church as a child, Marsha was not saved until adulthood when her eyes were finally opened to the love and mercy of Jesus Christ.
Since being saved, God has placed a loving burden on her heart to share the truth about God’s healing grace with those who may feel like forgiveness is not possible for them.