Thursday, 24 April 2014

U - Using blessings to bless others

My blessings:

A car

Access to finances

Ability to work

Australian citizenship

No disabilities/having overall health
Access to education

Freedom to practice Christianity

A supportive family

A house


Access to food and water

Being a 21st century female

How I use them to bless others:

Providing lifts to others who do not have access to a car 

Putting into the money offering at church/helping my mum by paying my own insurance and phone/buying needed things for others such as food.

Using my physical abilities to support others who don't.

Teaching others.

Telling others about Christ and providing bible verses and Godly encouragements for those who are hurting / serving in multiple children's ministries

Supporting others just as I've been supported my whole life.

Providing a safe place for those to come to when it is needed; a blessed house.

Passing clothes on to others who have none or little.

Sharing my access to food and water with others in the sense of hospitality.

Encouraging other young girls and women to hold themselves in strength in dignity in a world where women used to not have either...

I encourage you to look at your own blessings and evaluate how you could use them to bless others.

Your Starfish Story is still being written. . . Have faith

T - Tattooed and Christian

One concern from other Christians about me is the fact that I have tattoos. They tell me it's a sin, and that I should have them removed.

Other Christians support me and are proud of my tattoos,  saying that they give me an evangelistic edge; when people ask me about them,  I  am able to share parts of my testimony and what God has done for me.

The bible does say to not mark one's body,  however religious research has found that it was in reference to markings found in Pagan traditions... this same passage states that a person is not meant to shave, nor cut their hair.. should we also not participate in these bodily activities too?

Leviticus 19:23-28 23 “When you enter the land and plant fruit trees, leave the fruit unharvested for the first three years and consider it forbidden.[f] Do not eat it. 24 In the fourth year the entire crop must be consecrated to the Lord as a celebration of praise. 25 Finally, in the fifth year you may eat the fruit. If you follow this pattern, your harvest will increase. I am the Lord your God. 26 “Do not eat meat that has not been drained of its blood. “Do not practice fortune-telling or witchcraft. 27 “Do not trim off the hair on your temples or trim your beards. 28 “Do not cut your bodies for the dead, and do not mark your skin with tattoos. I am the Lord.

The old testament is one that was wiped by Jesus dieing on the cross. The old covenants are gone and the new is enforced. . Think about it. We no longer stone people to death because they cheated on their spouse (that's murder). We no longer sacrifice animals to connect receive forgiveness from God (that's animal cruelty) and women no longer marry their rapists if they are single (that's just morally wrong and thank goodness).

Jesus has saved us from such old testament practices and laws. 

My tattoos aid my evangalistic ministry and I am proud of them. 

Your Starfish Story is still being written.  . . Have faith

Wednesday, 23 April 2014

S - Skin-picker: Dermatillomania

For as long as I can remember, I've picked at my own skin. During winter, I would pull the loose skin from my lips and this would continue throughout the seasons. My fingers would be bleeding from their sides and I have never had beautiful long nails... 

During my teenage years, I began picking my feet. Bleeding toes and heals dug into made walking difficult.

Recently, I began picking at my arms and I've created various scars.

I have Dermatillomania, a psychological condition in which one obsessively picks at their skin.

everyone with 'Derma' experiences different things. Some may idly pick during everyday activity, where others may purposely seek out the mirror to rid their face and other various skin areas of bumps or lumps; things that in their mind, don't belong under their skin.

We are not drug addicts. We are not freaks. We are not self hammers.

We are people who suffer from something in our minds. Something that we can't escape. 

We are people who simply need support, guidance and love. 

My struggles vary. Today I began picking my lip again, which I haven't done in months, however my arms are scarred and my feet are throbbing along with my fingers. It's not easy, but it's me. I'm getting there... I will survive this. I always have,

Your Starfish Story is still being written. . . Have faith 

R - Radicated Christians

It takes guts to travel. It is venturing into the unknown, the unfamiliar and adjusting to new environments in short spaces of time..
However, this is the case when it comes to staying in one place too.

To be radicated, is to stay in one place. To be planted, rooted. 

When we stay in one place, we experience an extensive amount of change, we meet many people, and we become part of the history within that place.

To stay, is to have faith in the future of that place. It's to have faith in our future selves that develop within that place. 

I personally am dying to travel. I want to explore and experience many cultures. But I have always had something keeping me home. God wants me here.

I know one day I will travel. But right now, my ministry serves its purpose right here in the place that I was born and grew up. 

I am involved in multiple childrens ministries, each of which I serve a valued and strong purpose. That is worth more to me than any crazy adventure overseas. 

One day I will leave for a while.. But right now, I'm Radicated.

Your Starfish Story is still being written. . . Have faith 

Q - Queries and Questions

During my A - Z challenge, questions have been presented to me by multiple people about various topics. For "Q", I will be answering these questions and adding more as they are presented.

Do Christians sometimes poke fun at unbelievers?

I believe they do. I myself have found humanistic judgements on others coming out of my mouth or sitting in my mind, which I have begun shutting out of my life. I can't say anything for other Christians, but due to them being human too, I believe it does happen from some.. But certainly not all :)

Do you believe more heartbreak could be avoided if we were able to contact our younger selves before mistakes are made?
I do agree with this, however if we didn't make mistakes, we wouldn't learn and grow. Humans are beautifully resilient :)

Is profanity a sin itself? Which words?
The bible says "do not let any unwholesome talk come out of your mouths. Only what is helpful for building others up according to their needs, that it may benefit those who listen" Ephesians 4:29

Anything negative words that harm others is profanity and should not be used. Something that is a humanistic struggle.

Sometimes the hardest part of change is the anticipation of it... 
I agree. Not knowing the outcome of change is something I struggle with terribly. Thankyou for that revelation :)

Why did you get re baptised as a Christian rather than be catholic?
I chose to be re baptised for the sake of wanting to do a public deceleration of my faith. I was first baptised as a Catholic at the age of four, which was hardly my choice, nor a deceleration.

I don't believe my choice was based on religion, however I adore the sense of community and freedom within Christian churches. Prayer is free, traditions are not requirements and it is also less formal. Just simply comfortable for me :)

Please send more questions to be added to this post. I adore sparks of curiosity :) 

Your Starfish Story is still being written. . . Have faith 

P - Putting together God's puzzle pieces

                 All puzzles are different.

                                                                      Some are easy.

                               Some are difficult, with many pieces and a hard picture to follow. 

        What people don't seem to realise is that all puzzles are easy or difficult for different people. 

Can you remember your first puzzle? Maybe 10 pieces? Some characters or animal images? 
Do you remember how difficult it was for you? Probably not. It was a small trial in your life which, over time, you resolved. You learnt how to fit the pieces and the stress of learning faded as quickly as it came.

As you get older, the puzzles recommended for your age bracket become more difficult with detailed images to follow and many more pieces to place.

This is what it is like with God. 

As we become older Christians, we come against various trials which become more and more difficult. It takes patience, practice and guidance to put the pieces of these trials together in order to see the beautiful image/plan God has for us.

Keep putting the pieces together. It is all worth it in time.

Your Starfish Story is still being written. . . Have faith

O - Overcoming Dad's Death

On the 21st December I lost someone very special to me. Someone who young ladies need in their lives. My Dad.

Due to a condition called Pancreatitis, I lost my Dad way sooner than I should have.

But blessed I am, because I was born into the strongest family this world has ever seen.

My family; my mum, my 5 siblings and our spouses were called to the hospital. We were told Dad was not going to make the night due to severe problems with his pancreas and we were asked to say goodbye to Dad.

I had held it together through the night as we waited for his "sleep" to settle. I had decided not to go see him on his hospital bed as he was unconscious and I did not want to see him that way.

Before I knew it, I was running to his bed. I told him I loved him and cried the hardest I've ever cried in my life.

He taught me so many things. I have his eyes. His stubbornness. His sense of humour. His passion for people. He created friends wherever he went, which he held for life. He taught me that one chocolate is never enough, especially before dinner and late at night. He showed me the world of cars and taught me how to cook a mean BBQ. He taught me how to drive and never once criticised me on how I was going, despite his hand placed firmly on the handbrake ready to halt the car. I love you, Dad. 
"I love you too, you know that". 

My dad wasn't an amazing man. He IS an amazing man.

Take heart if you have lost a loved one. It's not the last of them. They are still around. Still supporting you, and still deeply love you.

Your Starfish Story is still being written. . . Have faith