Godly Leader

Hey ya’ll! ūüôā

It’s been a min. since I last wrote a post on here, but I wanted to share something that God put on my heart about one month ago. I had just attended the Freedom Challenge Estes Park climb. What is the Freedom Challenge?, you might ask.¬†The Freedom Challenge is a movement of passionate women dedicated to freeing oppressed and enslaved women and children all around the world. We do this by participating in physical challenges that test our limits, while raising funds and awareness to combat these dark, social injustices and set women and children on the pathway to freedom.

My physical challenge that week in Estes Park, CO. was to hike about 30 miles in 3 days. For those who know me… you know that this is no simple task. (My exercise pretty much consists of walking to the french press in the morning.) ūüėČ During the hikes, the Lord revealed Himself to me in ways that I could not have expected. One of the things He did was push my heart and test my understanding of what it meant to be a Godly leader. Here are just a few things I wrote down in reflection on the plane ride home:


  1. A Godly leader listens to the needs of the people they are leading.

    James 1:19- “Understand this, my dear brothers and sisters: You must all be quick to listen, slow to speak, and slow to get angry.”

2.  A Godly leader lifts up those that are leaders themselves and gives them opportunities to use their gifts. 

1 Thessalonians 5:11- “So encourage each other and build each other up, just as you are already doing.”

3. A Godly leader blesses people with the words of their mouth. 

Ephesians 4:29- “Don’t use foul or abusive language. Let everything you say be good and helpful, so that your words will be an encouragement to those who hear them.”

4. A Godly leader is patient and waits for those who are not yet leaders to be matured through Christ. 

Ephesians 4:2- “Always be humble and gentle. Be patient with each other, making allowance for each other‚Äôs faults because of your love.”

5. A Godly leader is aware of their weaknesses. 

2 Corinthians 12:10- “That‚Äôs why I take pleasure in my weaknesses, and in the insults, hardships, persecutions, and troubles that I suffer for Christ.¬†For when I am weak, then I am strong.”

6. A Godly leader is aware of their strength. 

Habakkuk 3:19- “The Sovereign Lord is my strength!¬†He makes me as surefooted as a deer,¬†able to tread upon the heights.”

7. A Godly leader is more concerned with the growth of those they are leading than with promoting themselves. 

Romans 12:1-3a. “We who are strong must be considerate of those who are sensitive about things… We must not just please ourselves. ¬†We should help others do what is right and build them up in the Lord. ¬†For even Christ didn‚Äôt live to please himself.”¬†

8. A Godly leader is continually filled up with Jesus, so that they can continually pour out to others. 

Romans 15:3- “I pray that God, the source of hope, will fill you completely with joy and peace because you trust in him. Then you will overflow with confident hope through the power of the Holy Spirit.”

9. A Godly leader prays for those that they lead. 

Romans 15:30- “Dear brothers and sisters, I urge you in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ to join in my struggle by praying to God for me. Do this because of your love for me, given to you by the Holy Spirit.”

10. A Godly leader is able to identify and separate truth from lies. (in their own life and in the lives of those they lead)

Romans 16:17-18- “And now I make one more appeal, my dear brothers and sisters. Watch out for people who cause divisions and upset people‚Äôs faith by teaching things contrary to what you have been taught. Stay away from them. ¬†Such people are not serving Christ our Lord; they are serving their own personal interests. By smooth talk and glowing words they deceive innocent people.”


Needless to say, sitting on the plane and having God whisper all of these truths into my heart was just a little on the convicting side. I pray that you who are reading this will also be convicted and challenged to be a Godly leader in the ways that He desires you to be.

To Him be the glory forever ‚̧


Abbey Nicole



Music/Ministry Update!

Dear friends,

2016 was an incredible year. There is so much to thank God for! I am so blessed to have you all as friends and prayer partners. I wanted to send an update to tell you how the Lord is moving in my life in 2016/2017. I am currently working in North Georgia as an elementary school teacher at a two-room schoolhouse. I teach all subjects to nine students ranging from first-third grade. We also have piano lessons where I teach fourteen students piano after school. This year we were able to see one precious girl come to know Christ. That in and of itself makes every difficulty worth it. It has been a wonderful first semester teaching, and I am looking forward to continuing with the school for the 2017/18 school year. I am also taking classes for my Master’s degree in Biblical Counseling. I will have completed one third of my degree by December 2017.  I am looking forward to seeing how the Lord uses my education and my teaching ability to help further His kingdom.

As many of you know, I spent the first half of 2016 at a music missionary training school through Operation Mobilization Arts in Italy.  I cannot say thank you enough to the people who supported me to attend the school. I can easily say that that trip changed my life forever. I learned so much about my own spiritual walk, how to use my music to share the gospel, and how to be a voice for the voiceless.

One project that I had the pleasure of working on was the music video for the song I had written, ‚ÄúSparrow.‚ÄĚ This song was written to raise awareness about human trafficking. I had written the song prior to attending Italy as a response to a mission trip I went on in China where we worked and prayed for women in Chinese brothels. I sang my song, ‚ÄúSparrow‚ÄĚ for the leaders of Operation Mobilization Arts while in Italy. After they heard the song, they talked to me about putting together a music video to raise awareness for their anti-human trafficking umbrella, The Freedom Challenge. We started working on it as soon as we returned back to ATL, and the video was completed in December 2016. All of the proceeds from the song go to The Freedom Challenge. It has been amazing to see how the Lord has been using ‚ÄúSparrow‚ÄĚ to make a difference in the world!

That brings us to today. What ministries is the Lord laying on my heart to partner with in 2017? I have three opportunities coming up that I need your prayer about.

  1. My church in Canton Georgia, Revolution Church, has a mission trip to Cambodia coming up in February of this year. They have a ministry in Cambodia called ‚ÄúProject Sparrow‚ÄĚ that works with victims of human- trafficking. (what a coincidence, right?) The Lord has made it very clear that I am to go on this trip. Cambodia is one of the top countries for child prostitution. Sparrow project‚Äôs ultimate dream would be to build a local church that would double as a school for these children and also as a rehab center for the women coming out of human trafficking. I would be going on this trip to serve the women and children in Cambodia and also to be praying about a potential long-term future ministry opportunity with Project Sparrow.

2. The second ministry opportunity I have is to return to Moldova at the end of May. I have been invited to attend the Operation Mobilization Arts Leadership Conference in Moldova. It would be about one week long. We are also trying to partner with The Freedom Challenge and work with the orphans in Moldova that have been rescued from human- trafficking. Moldova is regarded as the poorest country in Europe and is primarily a source country for victims of human trafficking, who are frequently forced to become sex workers in the Middle East. It’s estimated that one in every one hundred has been trafficked to date. I have a heart for this country because this was the place that I went on my first international mission trip in 2011. I cannot wait to return and see how God is at work over there.  (Please note that the anti-human trafficking side of this trip is tentative, but we will for sure be having the Arts in Mission leadership conference.)

3. I have been asked to lead worship at The Freedom Challenge women‚Äôs conference outside Denver Colorado. This would be toward the beginning of July. I would participate in the ‚ÄúFreedom Climb‚ÄĚ in Estes Park, CO.¬†¬†The mountain climb would raise money and awareness about human- trafficking for The Freedom Challenge. They have asked me to attend and lead worship for the conference, and to also sing ‚ÄúSparrow‚ÄĚ for the women who attend to encourage them to continue to make a difference in the world of anti-human trafficking.

I know in my heart that the Lord wants me to attend each one of these three trips. I feel very called and I know that He will provide the prayers needed and also the finances. I ask that you all would be praying if you would like to donate funds to help me attend any one of these mission/ ministry trips. Feel free to contact me with any questions about these opportunities.  If you would like to donate any amount of money, you can send checks made out to Abbey Sellers to my mailing address. (Contact me)

Donations for the trip to Cambodia next month are tax deductible, so if you would like to donate to that trip online, you can click HERE¬†and select the ‚ÄúDesignated Giving ‚ÄĚ button.¬†¬†After you type in the amount you would like to give, make sure you put that the donation is for ‚ÄúAbbey Sellers- Cambodia‚ÄĚ where it asks for the description.

If you would like to meet up and talk with me as well, feel free to text or call me and I would love to meet up with you.

I pray that you have had a very Merry Christmas and I look forward to hearing how the Lord is working in your life!


Many Blessings and a Happy New Year~

Abbey Nicole

End Slavery


Image 5-17-16 at 12.47 AM


Well, friends! It has been a few months since I wrote a blog post. The last time I wrote was during my first month in Italy at Incarnate School of Art & Mission! God has done so many wonderful things in my heart and mind through being in Italy. It will take me several blog posts to unpack all the different facets of my three months overseas, so let’s get started with the first one ūüôā

During my time in Italy with Operation Mobilization Arts, one thing that all of us artists at Incarnate were required to do was have studio time each week. In this studio time, we were required to write music that either told a story of people that we had been talking to, or focused on a specific aspect of what the Lord was teaching us that week/month. Each of these pieces had to be performed in front of the rest of the school. I love to use music to tell stories and I love getting to share them with others!

About 4 months before going to Incarnate, I sensed the Lord telling me to write a piece of music that told a story from the perspective of a woman trapped in human trafficking/prostitution. The song is called, “Sparrow.” When I arrived at Incarnate, I performed the piece for our school portfolio share. I had no idea that Operation Mobilization had a specific ministry dedicated to raising awareness about sex slavery. This ministry is called, “The Freedom Challenge.” Over the course of the 2 months following my portfolio share, I got together with some of the leaders in OM Arts and we began forming an idea. The idea was that we would record “Sparrow”and make it into a music video, using footage from some of the OM teams¬†that work with oppressed women. While in Italy, I recorded the video portion of the song, and will be recording the music for it in a few short months! This song will be used to raise awareness about human trafficking and to also call churches and believers to make a difference in the lives of the desolate.

“The Freedom Challenge” is a ministry of OM that provides ordinary people, like you an me to participate in what God is doing in the world of freeing slaves.


The following is an excerpt provided by “The Freedom Challenge.”


5 Reasons We Should Fight for the Freedom of Enslaved Women


By 1888, all countries had officially abolished participation in the transatlantic slave trade.

But, slavery still exists.

In fact, there are 30,000,000 slaves worldwide.

80 percent of them are women.


That means there are 24,000,000 women and children that have been forced into labor or indentured servitude; or that have been trafficked and sold; or that have been forced into marriage as a child bride.

24,000,000 women like us are told their lives belong to someone else.

24,000,000 women like us live without hope.


This. Should. Not. Be. Reality.


The truth is..

1. Women are¬†made in the image of God. ‚ÄúGod created mankind in His own image, male and female, He created them‚ÄĚ (Genesis 1:27). We were created to be creative, purposeful, spiritual, intelligent, relational, moral beings.

2. Women are the hub of family and community. Whether women are breadwinners, co-breadwinners or stay-at-home moms, their role in the family is substantial. Mothers are the emotional backbones of the family. This is more than just a nice thought. Study after study has shown that a woman has tremendous impact on her family, affecting everything from the healthcare to academic performance of her children.

3. The enslavement of women (and all humans) is against God‚Äôs plan. When Jesus died for us, He gave us freedom from the slavery of sin. As freed slaves, it is our job to ‚Äúset at liberty those who are oppressed‚ÄĚ (Luke 4:18). Enslavement destroys the very humans created in God‚Äôs image. Enslavement kills human potential.

4. Women should not be sold. Human Trafficking is a $32 billion dollar industry. To put that in perspective for us, that is 8x more than the biggest company of the Inc. 5000 list in 2015.

5. Women are in crisis globally. Imagine every woman in America ages 18-24 was enslaved. Now add the entire population of New Zealand to that number‚Ķ and the entire population of Jamaica…and the entire population of Fiji. That‚Äôs how many women are enslaved worldwide. Does that break your heart like it does mine?


We can do something about this. We can tackle this problem as a church. We can join movements like The Freedom Challenge to raise funds and awareness. We can free women together. We can provide restoration to women together. We can challenge ourselves in the name of sisterhood and freedom.


Freedom Challenge, in conjunction with Operation Mobilization USA (OM), is on a mission to free 1 million slaves and has already raised over three million dollars for the cause to date. OM works in partnership with believers and churches around the world and that’s key.

If you’re interested in an organization of free women fighting for enslaved women, it’s an incredible example of what we can do when we work together.


Together, we can make a difference.

Join me in spreading the word!

Italy Adventure: Week 1

Italy is amazing. I am learning so much already and I’ve only been here less than a week. There are close to 30 students here at Incarnate. Incarnate is a school for Christian artists who are interested in pursuing missions while incorporating their talents that God has given them. There are about 16 different nationalities of people here at the school, so literally there are students from all over the world! This picture is the view I have right when I step out of my door in the morning.

This week was orientation where we got a sense of how the school is going to work on a weekly basis. Yesterday we had a special worship time dedicated to prayer specifically for the people of the city where the school is located- Isola Del Gran Sasso. We are praying that we will be able to be a light in this community. I am here for 11 short weeks, but I know that the things I am learning will stay with me for a lifetime. I can’t wait to see how the Lord continues to stir my heart for Him and watch as He reveals His desires for my life. Tomorrow is our Sabbath day and I am looking forward to the rest and also exploring the area. I thank you for those of you who have been praying for me! I can feel your prayers. ūüôā

I just want to leave a few Bible verses on here that the Lord has been using to speak to me specifically this week:


“Cease striving and know that I am God;

I will be exalted among the nations,

I will be exalted in the earth.” Psalm 46:10


“They passed through the Phrygian and Galatian region, having been forbidden by the Holy Spirit to speak the word in Asia; and after they came to Mysia, they were trying to go into Bithynia, and the Spirit of Jesus did not permit them; and passing by Mysia, they came down to Troas. A vision appeared to Paul in the night: a man of Macedonia was standing and appealing to him, and saying, ‚ÄúCome over to Macedonia and help us.‚ÄĚ When he had seen the vision, immediately we sought to go into Macedonia, concluding that God had called us to preach the gospel to them.” Acts 16:6-10


‚ÄúYou are the light of the world. A city set on a hill cannot be hidden.” Matthew 5:14


Isaiah Chapter 2


“I know the Lord is always with me. I will not be shaken, for he is right beside me.

No wonder my heart is glad, and I rejoice.

My body rests in safety. For you will not leave my soul among the dead or allow your holy one to rot in the grave.

You will show me the way of life granting me the joy of your presence and the pleasures of living with you forever.

In Your right hand there are pleasures forever.” Psalm 16:8-11



” For the LORD your God is living among you.

He is a mighty savior.

He will take delight in you with gladness.

With his love, he will calm all your fears.

He will rejoice over you with joyful songs.” Zephaniah 3:17



“They worshiped together at the Temple each day, met in homes for the Lord‚Äôs Supper,

and shared their meals with great joy and generosity.” Acts 2:46




In case anyone is wondering- Italian coffee is most certainly the best I’ve ever tasted. My barista heart is satisfied. ‚̧

Packing List: Three Winter Months in Europe

As I am preparing to leave for my three month journey to Europe, I decided to write a travel packing list! I am a very fashion conscious person in general so I wanted to bring things that were cute, yet functional. This might be more stuff than what you would typically pack, but I think this will be just right for 3 months ūüôā

Side notes:
If you are traveling with expensive electronics, it is HIGHLY recommended to purchase travel insurance/health insurance. I purchased mine through Allianz Travel Insurance.

Make sure¬†that your passport is up to date and that it doesn’t expire before you need to return.

Additionally- because most of the time I take my guitar with me when I fly, I prefer to fly Delta airlines. They allow me to carry on¬†my guitar as if it were a “carry- on.” Delta allows you to have one carry on and one personal item with you on the plane. I make my back pack my personal item, and my guitar my carry- on. I have never had any issues. Some of the things on this list are specifically for musicians, but I added them anyways.

Prior to leaving, also make sure that you have contacted your bank and told them what countries you will be staying in so you can use your debit/credit card in Europe. Also contact your phone company to determine the best way of paying for international use of your phone.

Without further adieu, here is my packing list for 3 Fall/Winter Months in Europe:

Checked bag


1 rain jacket with hood
1 wool Jacket
3 pairs of jeans
1 pair of black jeggings
1 dress- neutral color
2 pairs of leg warmers- black/cream
2 scarves- black/cream
5 tank tops- two white/ one black/ one navy/ one burgundy
3 sweaters- one burgundy/ one patterned/ one white and gold
1 vest- hunter green
1 long sleeve shirt- black
4 cardigans- 2 grey/one navy/ one burgundy
2 tee shirts- burgundy/black
2 pairs of tights-cream/red
Clothes for sleeping
Enough underclothing for 2 weeks
5 pairs of socks- hiking, knee high, fuzzy, etc.


Hair gel
Body wash/Lotion
Eye makeup remover
Face wash
Nail clippers


Hiking boots
Black boots
Black flats
Brown boots
House slippers


2 pairs of gloves
2 belts- black/brown
2 pairs of sunglasses
2 hats (beanies)
Portable luggage scale
Sewing kit
Recording headphones/adapter plug (for music stuff)


Inflatable neck pillow
Macbook Pro
Chargers/ Cables
Re-usable water bottle
Makeup bag
Wallet with Drivers License
Travel Insurance card/paperwork
Books to read
Hand Sanitizer
Travel size lotion
Cough Drops
Pack of cards
Anti nausea medication
Make sure you have the address and the contact information for where you will be staying in Europe. (You will need this to fill out your customs form)

Guitar/ Case

Guitar (obviously) ūüôā
Extra batteries
Extra strings

Hope you’ve enjoyed this post! Let me know in the comments if you have anything you would add to the list. Happy Traveling!

-Abbey ‚̧

Mr. Right

Why is it so hard to find “Mr. Right?”¬†

I have had my fair share of discussions with fellow young Christian women over the years about the struggle to find a “good Christian guy.” They have dated so many different people in hopes of somehow stumbling¬†into “Prince Charming.” They have an old laundry list¬†of broken hearts and heart breakers.

Now. I do want to say. This post is not titled “Signs To Know That He’s The One.” This is not some check list to compare your significant other to. This is also not titled, “How to Find God’s Match for You.” This is truth from God’s word regarding the character of a man of God, that will hopefully provide some guidance for young women when faced with making decisions in this area.

So why do Christian women struggle with dating the “wrong¬†guy?” I think it can come down to a¬†problem of¬†forgetting¬†what a true man of God looks like, and most importantly- what he acts like. I have compiled a list of 10 things that stick out in the Bible the most to me in regard to the character of a man of God.¬†No man is perfect in all of these areas, but these are definitely good guidelines to follow and¬†things to look for.

A man seeking after God’s heart…

1. Studies the Word  

“But as for you, continue in what you have learned and have firmly believed, knowing from whom you learned it and how from childhood you have been acquainted with the sacred writings, which are able to make you wise for salvation through faith in Christ Jesus. All Scripture is breathed out by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, and for training in righteousness, that the man of God may be competent, equipped for every good work.” 1 Timothy 3: 14-17

What does this verse tell us? It tells us that wisdom comes directly from God. God has spoken to us through His word. Therefore, wisdom can be gleaned from the Word of God. This is very important to know. Men of God should be eager to hear what God has to say in order to teach others, correct bad behavior, train others to follow after God, and in order to be fully able to carry out the eternal task that the Lord has for them. If a man has no interest in learning what God has to say through His given Word, then he is probably not a true follower of our Lord Jesus Christ and/or is in rebellion against God.

2. Prays 

“We cannot know what prayer is for, until we know that life is war.”

This was a quote from a book I read yesterday that really stuck with me. Prayer is one of the biggest ways that we wage war against the devil. If someone doesn’t spend time in prayer, then they more than likely don’t realize the importance of it. In order for a man of God to effectively be led by God, and in turn lead his spouse, he must pray as if his life depends on it.

Matthew 6:9-13 says, “Pray then like this: ‚ÄúOur Father in heaven, hallowed be Your name. Your kingdom come, Your will be done, on earth as it is in heaven. Give us this day our daily bread, and forgive us our debts, as we also have forgiven our debtors. And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil.”

A man of God knows that the Father’s name must be hallowed and praised ONLY. He will be about¬†the Lord’s work and will acknowledge God as the ultimate provider for him and his family. He will trust in the Lord to keep Him from temptation and forgive him¬†when he sins. Ladies, you WANT a man who will pray not only for himself, but for you as well. This is a demonstration of how a man views¬†himself in light of God.

3. Perseveres

‚Ä®“More than that, we rejoice in our sufferings, knowing that suffering produces endurance, and endurance produces character, and character produces hope, and hope does not put us to shame, because God’s love has been poured into our hearts through the Holy Spirit who has been given to us.”¬†Romans 5:3-5

How a person responds when things don’t go their way/ when there are bad things happening, is a good indication of who they truly are. When life squeezes you tight, what’s inside is going to come out. How a man handles the trials of life is very important. As Christians we should all take shelter in the Lord when the storms of life are raging around us. We should always direct out focus on Him. Our suffering produces endurance and through that, our character is developed. Men of God will buckle down when things get tough. They will not give up. They will fight because their hope is in the Lord!

4. is Filled with Integrity

The¬†definition¬†of¬†integrity is this: “the quality of being honest and having strong moral principles; moral uprightness. The state of being whole and undivided.”

‚Ä®”Finally, brothers, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is just, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is commendable, if there is any excellence, if there is anything worthy of praise, think about these things.” Philippians 4:8

‚Ä®”Let your eyes look directly forward, and your gaze be straight before you. Ponder the path of your feet; then all your ways will be sure. Do not swerve to the right or to the left; turn your foot away from evil.”¬†Proverbs 4:25-27

I cannot stress the importance of this. As women of God it is SO important to know that the man in our life is living a life of integrity. He needs to be honest and have an unwavering sense of what is wrong and what is right. His heart must be wholly devoted to God. Undivided attention must be given to Him. He should strive to keep his heart from evil and to be a man of his word. His ultimate satisfaction needs to be rooted in the honorable, pure, lovely, excellent things of God.

5. Lives Intentionally

“But my life is worth nothing to me unless I use it for finishing the work assigned me by the Lord Jesus–the work of telling others the Good News about the wonderful grace of God.” Acts 20:24

A true man of God will seek to bring glory to the Father in everything that he does. He will go out of his way to proclaim who the Lord is to everyone around him through his action and words. As Christians, this should be our number one goal. We should intentionally share the gospel with the world around us. A man who is listening to the heart of God will also recognize the desperate need that the world has FOR Him. His heart will be burdened for the lost and those who are eternally perishing. He will realize that success is not measured in what he has or what he can do, but it is found only in the saving grace of Jesus. He will live his life in a way that demonstrates the need for worship in every tribe, tongue, and nation.

6. Serves

“For even the Son of Man came not to be served but to serve, and to give His life as a ransom for many.‚ÄĚ Mark 10:45

I don’t know of any¬†greater example that we should follow than that of our Savior.¬†Men and women of God need to¬†have a servant mentality. If we are considering getting into a¬†relationship with¬†someone, we should consider how they¬†spend their time. Do they give it to others? Do they make time to help others? Do they only use their time to enhance their own life? Do they¬†only have time for themselves? The are questions that need to be answered. A true man of God realizes that he was placed on this earth not for his own benefit, but to glorify God. God is glorified when we are about His business. If we are¬†never about the Lord’s¬†business, then we are being selfish. A man of God will give of his time, money, talents, and¬†spiritual gifts in order to¬†enhance the kingdom of God. He will take out of his own life to give to others.

¬†Ephesians 6:7, “Serve wholeheartedly, as if you were serving the Lord, not people”

7. Upholds Purity

‚Ä®”Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be¬†transformed¬†by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God‚Äôs will is‚ÄĒHis good, pleasing and perfect will.” Romans 12:2

‚Ä®”How can a young man keep his way pure? By guarding it according to your word.” Psalm 119:9

‚Ä®”But put on the Lord Jesus Christ, and make no provision for the flesh, to gratify its desires.” Romans 13:14

A man following God knows how very important it is that he upholds purity. Not¬†just for himself, but for his significant other as well. That being said- if there is a man in your life who does not value¬†purity of heart, body, and mind, then you need to be very cautious of continuing a relationship with him. A lack of self-control when it comes to physical purity is not a good sign. It is an indicator that they are not truly letting themselves be transformed by the Lord! If we are putting ON Christ then there will be NO room for selfish¬†gratifications. It is a daily choice to choose Christ instead of immorality. It is a choice to NOT¬†continue in our old pattern of thinking and to RUN to Jesus. We will only¬†know what the Lord’s will is for our¬†lives when we are allowing Him to¬†purify us from the inside out. You want a man who wants what Jesus wants.

8. Forgives/Peacemaker

‚Ä®“Bearing with one another and, if one has a complaint against another, forgiving each other; as the Lord has forgiven you, so you also must forgive.” Colossians 3:13

“Be kind to one another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, as God in Christ forgave you.” Ephesians 4:32

Forgivness. It is easier said than done sometimes. As Christians we have a command from the Lord to forgive others when they have wronged us. We are told to look to God for our example of how to forgive. He forgave us from our sins and rescued us from being forever separated from him by our sins. If God can forgive ALL of ours sins, how much more should we forgive those who have sinned against us? A man of God will seek to be at peace with all people. He will admit when he is wrong, ask forgiveness, and forgive those in need of it.

9. has Christian Fellowship/Accountability

“Iron sharpens iron, and one man sharpens another.” Proverbs 27:17

“And all who believed were together and had all things in common. And they were selling their possessions and belongings and distributing the proceeds to all, as any had need. And day by day, attending the temple together and breaking bread in their homes, they received their food with glad and generous hearts, praising God and having favor with all the people. And the Lord added to their number day by day those who were being saved.” Acts2:44-47

“Bear one another’s burdens, and so fulfill the law of Christ.” Galatians 6:2

Fellowship with other Christians is a vital part of the Christian life. Church, the body of Christ, is where we receive encouragement, love, and accountability. Surrounding ourselves by people who are following the Lord just like us is so important. We can help one another out when we are struggling, give to the poor and needy, and keep each other on the straight and narrow path of righteousness. A man of God will realize his need for christian brotherhood and accountability. He will seek after having a mentor and will put people in place in his life to hold his accountable to spiritual growth. He will want to be around people who believe like he does in order to encourage them/ be encouraged by them. A man of God will seek after people he can minister to and fellowship with on a regular basis.

10. Loves

“Love is patient and kind; love does not envy or boast; it is not arrogant or rude. It does not insist on its own way; it is not irritable or resentful; it does not rejoice at wrongdoing, but rejoices with the truth. Love bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things. Love never ends. As for prophecies, they will pass away; as for tongues, they will cease; as for knowledge, it will pass away.” 1 Corinthians 13:4-8

“And above all these put on love, which binds everything together in perfect harmony.” Colossians 3:14

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

Love is the greatest characteristic of a true man of God. Love is what defines us as believers in Christ! Love is what makes us different from the rest of the world. Love is what saves us. Love is what forgave us. Love is the only reason that I am even sitting here today writing this blog post. Love IS God. It will be the only thing that lasts and the only thing that makes relationships worthwhile. A man of God will demonstrate love because it will be an overflow from his heart/ time spent with the Father. He will have no other choice but to show that love to others. Husbands are called to love their wives as Christ loved the church. They must be willing to give up their lives for her and protect her at all costs. Men of God should demonstrate with their words and actions how much the women in their lives are cherished and valued by their creator, and encourage her to be the best woman of God that she can be. Love is the ULTIMATE sign of a follow of Christ. It is the greatest of all gifts and should be what we truly desire. My prayer is that we would be people who recognize this as a reality. May all that we do be done out of love and may we reflect that love to the world around us- whether we are single, dating, engaged, or married.

In Christ Alone,

Abbey ‚̧

India: Trusting and Listening to God

So. I would like to start off this article by asking you to not judge me. I am going to be completely transparent with you, so it is only natural that I would ask such a request. I am going to tell you a story about myself that I am not proud of, but it brings God glory so I am obliged to tell it.

At the beginning of Fall 2013, I was all signed up for my classes. I had my semester schedule and I was ready to go. The day before classes started I checked my email and realized that my art class had been cancelled. Now. Those of you who know me know that I do not handle sudden change very well. Being the researcher that I am, I immediately went onto the school website and searched for every class available that I could take to replace the cancelled art class. After many tedious mins. of searching, I finally came across the ONE class that fit into my schedule: Intro to Missions. I will just be honest. I wasn’t too terribly thrilled to have to take this class. Something about sitting in a class for 3 hours a week talking about the mission field and how to live a missional life, just wasn’t all that appeasing to me. I know. Appalling, right? I am a “great Godly girl.” There is no reason on earth why I shouldn’t want to take this class!! But nevertheless, I didn’t. Little did I know that taking this class was just a small part of the greater picture that God had for me.¬†

Syllabus day came and went. Within the first two weeks of class my professor, Dr. Pruitt, had already talked to the class about 2 different mission trip opportunities with the school. One of the trips was to Pittsburgh I believe, and the other was to India. As he handed out the flyers about the trips, I didn’t even take one. That’s right. I didn’t take the flyers. I had made the decision in my mind that I wasn’t going to go. Without even asking God, you say? Without asking God. I didn’t want to go Pittsburgh or India. End of story.¬†

If only it were the end of the story. ūüėČ

A few more weeks went by. The Pittsburgh trip came and went. At the end of missions class one day, Dr. Pruitt asked me if he could speak with me for a moment. I saw no reason why not, so I agreed. Dr. Pruitt looked at me and asked me if I had been praying about the India trip. I was a little taken aback by this question, and I responded that I had only briefly thought about the idea. He then proceeded to tell me that God had placed me specifically on his heart, and that God told him to ask me to pray about going to India. Dr. Pruitt then told me that there was one female spot left available to go on the trip, so if I wanted to go I would have to sign up very soon. 

Clearly, I was very surprised. I hadn’t even been considering going to India. I hadn’t been talking to my professor or friends about going, and I CERTAINLY hadn’t been talking to God about going. Why would I? I didn’t want to go, after all. I left class that day with the thought of India in the back of my mind. I told myself that I would pray about it later that day. I ended up praying, but not praying¬†sincerely about it. I just kinda tossed up my prayer and told God that if He wanted me to go He would need to make it very very clear, because I wasn’t feelin it. I went along about life never choosing to think about it again. ¬†

The funny thing about God is that if He truly wants to get your attention about something- He will. And so the story continues. Over the next two months I tried my very best to avoid thinking about India. I didn’t talk to my friends about. I talked to absolutely no one about the possibility of going there. But for “some reason” (God) I could never escape it. I felt like India was all that people talked about these days! I remember sitting at a table with a friend that I hadn’t talked to in months and having him telling me out of the blue all about this movie he had watched about missionaries in India. I would go to my friends dorm rooms and they would bring up things about their own personal trips to India and how much they loved it. They would tell me about books I needed to read that were about missionaries in India. India, India, INDIA.¬†

I still didn’t get the picture. I am too stubborn.¬†

At this point in the story, about 2 months had passed since my first conversation with Dr. Pruitt. It was now time for Thanksgiving break. I went to the lake-house and had a great time. Not once did I think about India. On my way home, I programmed my schools address into my GPS. I started to follow the directions and for some reason (God) my GPS rerouted and took me a different way than it normally did. I decided to follow it, in case it was avoiding some bad traffic located somewhere else. About 35 mins into the drive, I started to get concerned that I might have been lost. I started looking around for city names or road signs so I could get an idea of where I was. In the distance, I saw a water tower and decide to look at what city/county I was in.  As I stared up at this ginormous water tower, I saw the words clearly written on it: CURRY COUNTY. As I read it, I literally laughed inside. I hate curry. With a passion. Ironically enough, I had been joking around for years that I could NEVER go to India because everything there tastes and smells like curry. The people there literally live and breath curry. So.. as I read those words on the water tower, my thoughts instinctively went to India. 

Now. I don’t want to make you all believe that I am one of those people who walks around all the time “looking for signs” from the Lord. I believe that His word, the bible, is the NUMBER 1 way that He reveals Himself to us. I do however believe wholeheartedly that He uses things/people in our lives to get our attention and make us think. This was one of those times.¬†

When I got back to school, I decided it was time to tell 2 of my friends about everything that had been going on in my heart and mind for the past 2 months. I told them that I was going to truly pray and read the Word for 2 days about what I needed to do regarding the India trip. I still wasn’t too convinced that God really wanted me to go, but I was willing to consider it. 2 days was all that the Lord needed.¬†

At my college, we have a concrete cross that stands at the top of the hill on campus. I had previously made it a habit of walking up there almost every night just to clear my head and talk to the Lord. I did the same thing for these two nights. The first night I remember talking to Him about India and crying because I didn’t know what He wanted for me.¬†I boldly told the Lord that I wanted another sign. I asked Him to make it immensely obvious.¬†The second night I walked up to the cross and I sat in silence at the foot of the cross for almost an hour. I was waiting on the Lord. I told Him that I wanted His peace and direction. As I was sitting there, I felt a light rain drop on my shoulder. I looked up into the night sky and it started raining harder. I sat in the rain until I couldn’t take the cold anymore. I decided to move to the nearest place for shelter- the library porch. I got to the library and sat down on the bench. I put my head down and just listened to the rain. As I was about to get up to leave, something in the moonlight caught my eye. I looked down on the ground right next to my bench and noticed something I had never seen before. Carved into the ground, plain as day, was the word: INDIA. I started crying and I knew what my answer was.

But that didn’t matter. I still wasn’t going to go. I had been rebelling for so long about this, that nothing was going to change my mind. The next day was the last day of my Intro to Missions class. Dr. Pruitt told everyone in the class that he had a surprise for us if we went to his office to pick it up. He and his wife has purchased Christmas coffee mugs for everyone! I took forever to pick out my mug and I was the last one in the office. I finally made my choice and I started to my way out of the office door. As my body reached the door, the Lord told me to at least ask Mrs. Uys, the Missions secretary, if there was a spot available on the trip.¬†Surely there would be no spots left! The team was leaving in 3 months, and it was always a popular mission trip at our school. I turned around and slowly made my way to her desk. I meekly asked her if there was another female spot still on the trip. She got on her computer and checked. She looked up and smiled as she said, “Why, yes. There is one spot left.”

I was astonished. I told her that I felt like I was suppose to go on the trip. I was hesitant and added that I had no money to make the down payment. She quickly handed me all of the paper work and told me that we would deal with the money later once the papers were signed. I sat down and filled out the papers. As I stood to hand them to her, I heard Dr. Pruitt come out of his office. ¬†He stood in the doorway and grinned. “So you finally decided to go on the India trip?” I told him that I knew that God was wanting me to go. He looked at me and said, “Well that’s good, because a gentleman came into my office a few moments ago and¬†anonymously paid $500 towards YOUR personal trip to India.” He laughingly added that it wasn’t him. I felt like a hammer had hit me. I sat down in the chair and started to cry uncontrollably. I had been fighting God for so long about going to India. This was yet another extension of His grace to my disobedience. I glanced up and saw Mrs. Uys. She was glowing as she said, “Abbey, if you wanted a sign- this was it.”

I knew she was right.

God is good and will provide for every need. Sometimes we just need to step out in faith and trust that He has it all under control, even when we don’t see the bigger picture. And by sometimes, I mean: ALL THE TIME.¬†

Look to the Lord and HIS Strength; Seek His Face Always. 
1 Chronicles 16:11