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DETERMINATION…not a word that has featured too frequently in my vocabulary over the years! It’s a word that NEEDS to feature more, and thankfully it IS! My #determination has been increasing over the last 3 years as I have been on a journey of weight loss, getting married, immigrating, job hunting…however, it has also been mixed greatly with feelings of defeat and insufficiency.

2014 was a new start for me in many ways…new focus, new priorities, new determination. Now a leader of a Proverbs 31 Online Bible Study Facebook Small Group, I began the year preparing for the new study beginning on January 19th – Made to Crave. My M2C journey began on January 2nd.

It has filled me with fresh #determination and every day I feel more #empowered to #craveGOD above all else in my life. It has also found me more appreciative of LIFE, and the things I have in my life…rather than what I do NOT have.

Following my 4th knee surgery in 2013, I resigned myself to never being able to have the level of fitness I desire, I allowed myself to be defeated. At the beginning of January I received a flier for the 2014 @swimathon. I had completed this in 2012 – the 1 mile swim that time. It was what I needed to prompt me into ACTION! Filled with #determination, I went for a practice swim – my first since my surgery – realized it didn’t hurt, and promptly registered for the longest distance, the 5km (200 lengths). I am full of #determination to complete this – not only to raise money, but also to focus my mind on what I CAN achieve with STRENGTH from The LORD.

This week, I set myself my biggest goal – 200 lengths in the week. Monday = 75 lengths. On Wednesday I went to the pool without a plan really, but I found myself just swimming…and praying…and swimming. The LORD was strengthening me with every length and I was #empowered. I felt Him saying – “Just keep going!” Had my parents not been picking me up, I don’t know when I would have stopped! As it was I stopped after 125 lengths with my last 10 lengths being my fastest…I hit my goal for the week and it was only Wednesday!!!!! I was overflowing with #DETERMINATION!

“For I can do everything through Christ, who gives me strength.” Phil. 4:13 NLT

Today, Thursday…I went for a walk and insisted on being the one carrying my 9 month old nephew on my back, in his back carrier, as I suddenly thought of The Biggest Loser and how they are made to carry a weighted vest to illustrate what they used to carry around.

It was noticeably more effort, and when we got in I weighed myself fully clothed with baby on back! I was carrying an additional 40lbs of weight on that walk but still 20lbs less than what I used to carry. It was a POWERFUL message – I am free from that weight and burden – it symbolizes anxiety that I used to carry and have now cast aside and broken free from. It was an emotional, but empowering experience and I have even more #determination now to continue on this journey – not only to be as healthy as possible, but also to continue to grow closer to God every single day!

“Cast all your anxiety on him because he cares for you.” 1 Pet. 5:7 NIV

Praise the LORD for helping me on this journey and getting to where I am…full of #determination!

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