Layla’s Light Blog – Encouragement

Self Analysis

dog in mirror

If someone were to ask you how you describe yourself, what description would you give? How do you think others would describe you? Would the two descriptions be equivalent? Most likely, your perception of yourself would be much different than how others perceive you. Unfortunately, most of us focus on what we think others notice about us; instead of how we have impacted other’s lives. It can be difficult to see the physical evidence of how you have influenced someone else. Whether the influence has been good or bad; the truth is, we have a great influence on other people. Our character and our reaction to the situations we face are an example in our daily lives. Our faith walk is a ministry in itself. Do other people know you for your negative, grumbling, or frustrated attitude? Are you abrasive to others, forceful, or pushy? Or, do other people know you for your commitment to praying, trusting in God’s will, helping others, and living your life in the most positive way possible? Do you people see you smiling when they approach you, and welcoming in your demeanor?

We all face trials and tribulations throughout life. We all have the same opportunity to make a difference in life. Let us all do our best to look at the positive things we each hold within us. Let us focus on nurturing our spirit so that we can be a positive example of this world. Help us help each other; by building each other up with encouragement and hope. Jesus led by example. May we determine to wake up each day, and allow Jesus in our hearts, so that we can be molded into His image daily.

Do not let any unwholesome talk come out of your mouths, but only what is helpful for building others up according to their needs, that it may benefit those who listen. And do not grieve the Holy Spirit of God, with whom you were sealed for the day of redemption. Get rid of all bitterness, rage, and anger, brawling and slander, along with every form of malice. Be kind and compassionate to one another, forgiving each other, just as in Christ God forgave you. EPHESIANS 4:29-32

Therefore encourage one another and build each other up, just as in fact you are doing. 1 THESSALONIANS 5:11

God is with us.

Layla

© Layla Freeman 2018
Author of HOPE IN THE STRUGGLE and Layla’s Light 
All Rights Reserved 
P.O. Box 669 Claremore, OK 74018 
http://www.laylafreeman.com
laylaslight@cox.net
Facebook – Layla’s Light
Twitter – @laylaslight

Layla’s Devotional Book available for purchase at the following: 

HOPE IN THE STRUGGLE  – $9.95 

AMAZON – Hope In the Struggle – https://www.amazon.com/Layla-Freeman/e/B01M0VNTIM

Light of Hope  –  400 N. J. M. Davis Blvd. Claremore, OK 74017 / 1801 N. Hwy. 66 Catoosa, OK 74015 / 918-373-4560 

Stonebrook Day Spa– 1875 N Old Hwy 66 A, Catoosa, OK 74015 (918) 379-6838

Cozy Cottage Store – 518 W Will Rogers Blvd, Claremore, OK 74017  (918) 283-2232


She Brews Coffee Houses 414 West Will Rogers Boulevard Claremore, OK 74017  (918) 923-6020

The Value of Thanks

thankyou

Uplift, encourage and praise people. Give people recognition. Do you realize how much just a few words of encouragement can change a person’s entire day? How often do we hear words of praise? Many of us work hard at helping others on a daily basis. So often, the jobs that people do, are jobs of service to other people. How often do you take those services for granted? Waitress, nursing, teaching, counseling, law enforcement, cashiers, bank tellers, ministry, postal workers, construction, road service crew, bus/taxi drivers, you name it; the list is endless. Every job we do is a service of some type. Recognize what other people are doing to serve you. These people work hard. People need to be recognized. Taking these people and their services for granted, is selfish on our part.

God desires us to love one another. God asks us to encourage one another and build each other up. 1 THESSALONIANS 5:11. Let us focus on being positive and encouraging. Say thank you. Tell someone you recognize their hard work and effort. If you will speak uplifting words to at least one person each day, you will be a part of what God calls us to do. Love and peace. Encouragement and hope. These are the things of value. These are the things Jesus taught us. Let us focus on being a source of hope to someone today.

 If it is encouraging, let him encourage; if it is contributing to the needs of others, let him give generously; if it is leadership, let him govern diligently; if it is showing mercy, let him do it cheerfully. ROMANS 12:8

But encourage one another daily, as long as it is called Today, so that none of you may be hardened by sin’s deceitfulness. HEBREWS 3:13

God is with us.

Layla

© Layla Freeman 2018
Author of HOPE IN THE STRUGGLE and Layla’s Light 
All Rights Reserved 
P.O. Box 669 Claremore, OK 74018 
http://www.laylafreeman.com
laylaslight@cox.net
Facebook – Layla’s Light
Twitter – @laylaslight

Layla’s Devotional Book available for purchase at the following: 

HOPE IN THE STRUGGLE  – $9.95 

AMAZON – Hope In the Struggle – https://www.amazon.com/Layla-Freeman/e/B01M0VNTIM

Light of Hope  –  400 N. J. M. Davis Blvd. Claremore, OK 74017 / 1801 N. Hwy. 66 Catoosa, OK 74015 / 918-373-4560 

Stonebrook Day Spa– 1875 N Old Hwy 66 A, Catoosa, OK 74015 (918) 379-6838

Cozy Cottage Store – 518 W Will Rogers Blvd, Claremore, OK 74017  (918) 283-2232

She Brews Coffee Houses 414 West Will Rogers Boulevard Claremore, OK 74017  (918) 923-6020

Are you sad?

sadness

What does it mean to be sad? Does it mean we are weak? No. Does it mean our faith is not where it should be? No. Sadness is a human emotion that we all face at some point in our life. Sadness is an emptiness that we need to be filled. Often times when we face times of sadness, we tend to withdraw. We isolate, seclude ourselves, and reject others. This is the time when we need to pray. This is the time when we need to pick up our Bible more than ever. Why is it so hard to pray or seek The Word when we are sad? The enemy uses this time to manipulate our thoughts.

Our greatest weapon is prayer and the Scripture. Even if we don’t feel like praying or reading God’s Word during our sadness, it’s the most powerful thing we can do. Whispering prayer to God gives Him the opportunity to enter into your heart. We must invite God in. We have been given free will to live our lives as we choose. God will not invade that free will, therefore, we must ask God to come to us. We must pray. Even if it’s three words muttered under your breath. “God, help me,” or “guide me through”, it is a prayer that God will hear. Reading God’s Word points us back to the Cross. It brings our spirit to the surface. It opens our hearts to allow God to nourish our soul.

Sadness is ok. Maintaining the sadness is not ok. You have the control and power given to you through Jesus, to overcome. Give yourself the gift of love, through prayer and the words in scripture that are written in love. Remind yourself that you are loved more than anything on this earth. Your Heavenly Father created you in His image. Seek Him in prayer and through His Word and He will lift you up in due time. I assure you, God is with you, always.

My son, pay attention to what I say; listen closely to my words. Do not let them out of your sight, keep them within your heart; for they are life to those who find them and health to a man’s whole body. Above all else, guard your heart, for it is the wellspring of life. PROVERBS 4:20-23

The Lord will guide you always; He will satisfy your needs in a sun-scorched land and will strengthen your frame. You will be like a well-watered garden, like a spring whose waters never fail. ISAIAH 58:11

God is with us.

Layla

© Layla Freeman 2018
Author of HOPE IN THE STRUGGLE and Layla’s Light 
All Rights Reserved 
P.O. Box 669 Claremore, OK 74018 
http://www.laylafreeman.com
laylaslight@cox.net
Facebook – Layla’s Light
Twitter – @laylaslight

Layla’s Devotional Book available for purchase at the following: 

HOPE IN THE STRUGGLE  – $9.95 

AMAZON – Hope In the Struggle – https://www.amazon.com/Layla-Freeman/e/B01M0VNTIM

Light of Hope  –  400 N. J. M. Davis Blvd. Claremore, OK 74017 / 1801 N. Hwy. 66 Catoosa, OK 74015 / (918)-373-4560 

Stonebrook Day Spa– 1875 N Old Hwy 66 A, Catoosa, OK 74015 (918) 379-6838

Cozy Cottage Store – 518 W Will Rogers Blvd, Claremore, OK 74017  (918) 283-2232

She Brews Coffee Houses 414 West Will Rogers Boulevard Claremore, OK 74017  (918) 923-6020

You are…

Praise versus criticism. Think about how these two words have affected you in your life. How much influence did words of praise have on you, instead of words of criticism? When we receive praise for things in our life…no matter how small the subject…it creates a positive mindset. Advice is necessary for certain situations, but it can be presented in a context of careful wording, using “suggestion” instead of criticism. Words are very powerful, and the effect of properly used words can have a lifelong impact. Criticizing someone can be hurtful and create pain and sadness. Choose to be a positive, praise-filled person. The more you practice praising someone for the things they do, the more you find fulfillment within your own spirit. Positive breads positive. No matter what the situation, you can find some kind of positive within it. Let us look to the wisdom of Jesus, taught to us very clearly in the words of our Bible. Jesus was very careful with His words.  May we all strive to be careful how we use our tongue.

My lips will not say anything wicked, and my tongue will not utter lies. JOB 27:4

Likewise, the tongue is a small part of the body, but it makes great boasts. Consider what a great forest is set on fire by a small spark. JAMES 3:5

With the tongue, we praise our Lord and Father, and with it, we curse men, who have been made in God’s likeness. Out of the same mouth come praise and cursing. My brothers, this should not be. JAMES 3 9-10

God is with us.

Layla

© Layla Freeman 2018
Author of HOPE IN THE STRUGGLE and Layla’s Light 
All Rights Reserved 
P.O. Box 669 Claremore, OK 74018 
http://www.laylafreeman.com
laylaslight@cox.net
Facebook – Layla’s Light
Twitter – @laylaslight

Layla’s Devotional Book available for purchase at the following: 

Hope in the Struggle – $9.95 

AMAZON – Hope In the Struggle – https://www.amazon.com/Layla-Freeman/e/B01M0VNTIM
Another Chapter Bookstore – 9455 N Owasso Expressway, Owasso, OK 74055  (918) 609-5946

Stonebrook Day Spa – 1875 N Old Hwy 66 A, Catoosa, OK 74015 (918) 379-6838

Cozy Cottage Store – 518 W Will Rogers Blvd, Claremore, OK 74017  (918) 283-2232


She Brews Coffee Houses – Claremore, OK  (Downtown & within The Vessel) 

Downtown – 414 West Will Rogers Boulevard
Claremore, OK 74017  (918) 923-6020

South – 1301 West Country Club Road, Suite 100
Claremore, OK 74019 (918) 965-1121

Difference Makers

make a difference phrase on blackboard

As we look around us, we can hear and see so much suffering in this world. It is heartbreaking to observe the brokenness in so many world situations. This makes me ask myself the question, “What am I doing to make a difference?”

In all the ‘busyness’ we create in our lives, are we being purposeful in helping this world? No matter how hard you try, there is no way of tuning out of the world. World tragedies are happening all around us, and we cannot ignore this raw pain. It’s heartbreaking to see the evil, and the devastation surrounding us. So, what can I do to make a difference? Love. Pray. Be available. Trust God. In all the days Jesus spent on this earth…He loved. Jesus prayed. Jesus was available. And despite the suffering, the persecution and the horrific things Jesus faced…He trusted God. If I can learn to show love despite what the world says, I can make a difference. If I can pray for everyone…selfless, heartfelt prayers, seeking God in every situation…regardless if I know them or not…I can make a difference. If I can make myself available to help, to listen, to grow, to guide, and to learn, I can make a difference. If I can purposely trust God, regardless of what I may see, feel or hear, and show others how powerful it is to truly TRUST GOD, then I can make a difference.

Why? Why do I need to make a difference? Because Jesus asks us to be the example. We are the disciples of Christ. You and I can and will make a difference in this world if we make an effort to decide to just be true loving people. God is with us in all that we do. He will guide us toward peace and hope if we seek Him. I want to know, that when I die, I made a difference to someone. I want to be remembered for being a light, a positive, spirit-filled, caring person. I choose to live for Christ. I choose a life of joy despite what the world says. I pray you will walk along-side me and seek the peace of God that surpasses all understanding. Love one another and make a difference.

Better is one day in your courts than a thousand elsewhere; I would rather be a doorkeeper in the house of my God than dwell in the tents of the wicked. For the Lord God is a sun and shield; the Lord bestows favor and honor; no good thing does He withhold from those whose walk is blameless. O Lord Almighty, blessed is the man who trusts in you. PSALM 85:10-12

Jesus said: “But the Counselor, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in my name, will teach you all things and will remind you of everything I have said to you. Peace I leave with you, my peace I give you. I do not give to you as the world gives. Do not let your hearts be troubled and do not be afraid.” JOHN 14:26-27

God is with us.

Layla

© Layla Freeman 2018
Author of HOPE IN THE STRUGGLE and Layla’s Light 
All Rights Reserved 
P.O. Box 669 Claremore, OK 74018 
http://www.laylafreeman.com
laylaslight@cox.net
Facebook – Layla’s Light
Twitter – @laylaslight

Layla’s Devotional Book available for purchase at the following: 

HOPE IN THE STRUGGLE  – $9.95 
AMAZON – Hope In the Struggle – https://www.amazon.com/Layla-Freeman/e/B01M0VNTIM

Light of Hope  –  400 N. J. M. Davis Blvd. Claremore, OK 74017 / 1801 N. Hwy. 66 Catoosa, OK 74015 / (918)-373-4560 

Stonebrook Day Spa – 1875 N Old Hwy 66 A, Catoosa, OK 74015 (918) 379-6838

Cozy Cottage Store – 518 W Will Rogers Blvd, Claremore, OK 74017  (918) 283-2232

She Brews Coffee Houses 414 West Will Rogers Boulevard Claremore, OK 74017  (918) 923-6020

Sharing the Love

Bible love

How often have you poured your heart into something and hoped it would generate a stirring in many hearts for Jesus? You have written messages, blogs, cooked foods, or create a tangible item, in hopes that when you handed it over…it would mean as you intended it to. You prayed over these things and prayed that once you had given the message, food or item, it would impact lives. It is not easy being the encourager, the messenger, the vessel. Sometimes you find yourself with zero response. You begin to question whether anyone heard, read, or noticed? You wonder if any of your efforts are making a difference. You ask God, “why am I not seeing the fruits of my offerings?” This world is not about us. Shocking isn’t it? As much as everything we are surrounded by screams “self, self, self”, this world is not about us. This world is about Jesus. Our Savior. Our Redeemer. The One and Only. When God calls us to be a vessel in His honor, He does not tell us we will win a trophy when we achieve a certain amount of results. God calls us to action, to tell the world of The Savior Jesus. We are the messengers. We are God’s children, and His love is everlasting. We know of the salvation and eternal life we have in Jesus. Allow it to be our heart’s desire to let the world know of the Gospel. Allow God to use you to share the good news. We will never know the impact we have had on other people. It is not up to us to try to see any type of ‘results’. The results that we can count on, is the knowledge that we are making a difference for the Kingdom. Planting the seeds of salvation have a harvesting effect you can only imagine…until eternity.   

Those who are wise will shine like the brightness of the heavens, and those who lead many to righteousness, like the stars forever and ever. DANIEL 12:3

But when the time had fully come, God sent his Son, born of a woman, born under the law, that we might receive the full rights of sons. Because you are sons, God sent the Spirit of his Son into our hearts, the Spirit who calls out “Abba, Father.” So you are no longer a slave, but a son; and since you are a son, God has made you also an heir. GALATIANS 4:4-7

God is with us.

Layla

© Layla Freeman 2018
Author of HOPE IN THE STRUGGLE and Layla’s Light 
All Rights Reserved 
P.O. Box 669 Claremore, OK 74018 
http://www.laylafreeman.com
laylaslight@cox.net
Facebook – Layla’s Light
Twitter – @laylaslight

Layla’s Devotional Book available for purchase at the following: 

Hope in the Struggle – $9.95 

AMAZON – Hope In the Struggle – https://www.amazon.com/Layla-Freeman/e/B01M0VNTIM

Light of Hope Offices: 400 N. J.M. Davis Blvd. Claremore, OK 74017 / 1801 N. Hwy. 66 Catoosa, OK 74015 / 918-373-4560  www.lightofhopeinc.org

Another Chapter Bookstore – 9455 N Owasso Expressway, Owasso, OK 74055  (918) 609-5946

Stonebrook Day Spa– 1875 N Old Hwy 66 A, Catoosa, OK 74015 (918) 379-6838

Cozy Cottage Store – 518 W Will Rogers Blvd, Claremore, OK 74017  (918) 283-2232


She Brews Coffee Houses – Claremore, OK  (Downtown & within The Vessel) 
Downtown – 414 West Will Rogers Boulevard
Claremore, OK 74017  (918) 923-6020
South – 1301 West Country Club Road, Suite 100
Claremore, OK 74019 (918) 965-1121