UPDATE

It’s been so long. I know I’ve abandoned my blog. Forgive me. I just edited my About Me too explaining this. I sound redundant. But I’m back. If you care. Or if you don’t I really don’t mind. 🙂 I started this years ago and I just can’t not use it ever again. It’s always nice to have something to call your own. I think I’m finally starting to think more like a mom, even though I don’t have any kids. This is my baby. I need to nurture it. I think God would really like that. He was the one who prompted me to start this anyway. So yes, Im back. I’m alive or at least trying to survive. Life got busy. Reading some of my old posts makes me crack up. I’ve gone and deleted ones that just sound immature. Err. I’m still growing and every year gets better and better. What matters is I keep walking in faith and part of that is keeping up with this blog. I’m so glad 2018 has been great towards me so far. I’m learning to expand in ways I only dreamed in the past. And having this blog will push me to share the Lord’s goodness. I’m grateful. And so should you, for whatever circumstance you might be in, know that it only takes gratitude for the things you already have, because with God all things are possible. While I’ve been gone, on my free time, I would read so much on health because I knew I wasn’t living my best. I’m always led to the cold truth that my relationship with Christ is directly related to my overall wellbeing, and the topic of health has definitely stepped up on my list of values. So I’ve been doing a lot of independent research, specifically concerning women’s health. If you are only following this blog because of the Christian-based content, you might want to unsubscribe. I would just like to warn you that I’m incorporating all things related to diet/weight loss (recipes, tips, and health in general). I will be sharing my weight loss journey in hopes of helping many other women struggling to lose unwanted weight. Lastly, I am a portrait artist who has committed to using my talent not just when I feel like drawing or painting. I’ve been blessed to appreciate detail in everything and with this gift, how can I suppress it? I’ll be posting all my artwork here. Check out my GALLERY. So that’s me for now. I hope you all are doing great this year. And I pray you receive blessings every day. BE BLESSED! 🙂

By His Grace, Sheela (via sheelaleigh.com)

 

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Sorrows Into Joy

 

Even after all these years of being a Christian, I still struggle with trust. In all my relationships, God wants me to dearly cling onto Him. When I’m at my weakest (usually a few days out of the month…) I’m reminded of traumatizing experiences in my past. But without a relationship with the Lord, I would be clueless as to how He could turn my sorrows into joy. I’m so grateful for my trials. Anybody who has been physically and/or verbally abused by a parent, guardian, or partner, remember He only gives what you can handle, and it’s in His will you come out of it a much stronger person. You wouldn’t be the faithful and strong person you are today if you never acknowledged God was watching over you.

James 1:2-4, 12 Count it all joy, my brothers, when you meet trials of various kinds, for you know that the testing of your faith produces steadfastness.  And let steadfastness have its full effect, that you may be perfect and complete, lacking in nothing. Blessed is the man who remains steadfast (or perseveres) under trial, for when he has stood the test he will receive the crown of life, which God has promised to those who love him.

Romans 5:3-4 We rejoice in our sufferings, knowing that suffering produces endurance, and endurance produces character, and character produces hope.

By His Grace, Sheela (via sheelaleigh.com)

 

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How He Transforms Lives

If you’ve noticed lately that things have been causing you grief because nothing is going your way, God will continually put you in the same situations until you begin to be convinced that He’s trying to get your attention. He wants you to know that He’s about to make some changes in Your heart and He needs your mind to focus on gaining more faith in His ability to do so. This is how He transforms lives.

NOTE: This will be a future vlog and/or series.

By His Grace, Sheela (via sheelaleigh.com)

 

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CONFIDENCE SERIES (VIDEOS)

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Have you ever realized the difference between your confidence and God’s confidence in you? Do you lack confidence in yourself, even as a Christian? I do at times.

My confidence is proud of the strong person I have become because of my past…as if I am the only one who has endured more pain and suffering than anyone else I know, and I haven’t even experienced a midlife crisis yet. I subconsciously put the focus on me and next thing I know I’m having anxiety.

So I pray to have God’s confidence. His confidence is a quiet and humble, comforting peace. It assures me that He is guiding me and good things are to come. It’s a simple and solid truth that says, “Be still my child, let Me work things out for your good because you cannot do this on your own.”

Watch this playlist on the CONFIDENCE SERIES…

 
  1. Put Your Confidence in God
  2. Self-Confidence | Value in God
  3. How to Overcome Self-Doubt & Improve Self-Confidence
  4. Overcome Self-Doubt Bible Study | Self-Confidence
  5. Guided Christian Meditation | Peaceful Relaxing Prayer (for Confidence)

If you’re learning to put your confidence in God, these are the key things to remind yourself:

  • Nothing is too great for Him to accomplish (Jeremiah 32:17, 27; Luke 1:37; Matthew 19:26).
  • I am rich and am blessed in Him (2 Corinthians 8:9; James 2:5; Matthew 5:3; Hebrews 13:5; Romans 6:23).
  • I have nothing to fear (John 14:27; 1 Chronicles 28:20; Isaiah 41:10-13).

4

God’s confidence is a bold and peaceful assurance. He gives it to those who genuinely seek to exchange their understanding for His wisdom. He refines their character and gives them a renewed outlook on life only if they are willing to change their ways. 

I know that it’s His confidence working in me when my walk, my smiles, my laughs, and the way I talk are in tandem with His joy. I notice that I have a different, much brighter glow about me when my thoughts give Him glory and credit for making me the person I am today. I have to remember that.

Want to build your confidence in God? I’ve put together this free list of affirmative questions as a supplement to help you reevaluate where you are in your spiritual walk. 

>>>31 JOURNAL PROMPTS FOR BOOSTING YOUR CONFIDENCE<<<

Jeremiah 17: 7 But blessed is the one who trusts in the LORD, whose confidence is in Him. 

By His Grace, Sheela (via sheelaleigh.com)

 

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Unusual Dream

The other night I had a dream. I was driving a truck pretty fast on a pretty empty freeway. I don’t know why I was speeding. I felt I was not rushing to go anywhere. But for some reason my heart was calm. As I’m typing this, I’m realizing it was God behind the wheel. The truck in my dream went off onto a ramp but the ramp was not a complete path. I found myself up high in the air and I looked down to see an entire neighborhood. It was beautiful. The truck went into nose dive and still my heart was at peace. I felt like I was flying.

I woke up but still remained calm. I laid in bed and kept my eyes closed, but it didn’t take long for my mind to somehow come up with it’s own interpretation. I really just wanted to keep sleeping. The fact that I remained calm throughout an experience that would have terrified another even if it was only a dream, tells me God is preparing peace in my heart if He did take me to be with Him today.

adobe-spark-post (16)Last month, I was in Los Angeles visiting my boyfriend when one afternoon, my brother Isaac texted me about what happened to our mom. I called her as soon as I could but I guess she was busy on her phone chitchatting to someone else about it. She was held at gun point, not once but twice at her job where she had just started as a pharmacist on call. There were two other workers with her. She ran to the register where the panic button was. The two robbers of course demanded for her to open the register, and in her honest reply, she didn’t know how. They wanted Oxycontin as well, which she then told a lie. She didn’t have the access she said. The boys ran off only with the panic button and an iPhone of one of the workers. Hahahaha! We never got word from the investigating officers if they ever found those kids, but I doubt it was even difficult at all tracking the phone down. This calls for a verse or two from the Bible and I pick Ephesians 6:4 -​ Fathers, do not provoke your children to anger, but bring them up in the discipline and instruction of the Lord. Proverbs 22:6 – Train up a child in the way he should go; and when he is old he will not depart from it.

Back to my story about my mom…When I had her retell the story to me, she said she felt at peace while everything happened so fast. She might have appeared panicked at first but she said she felt a sense of calm in her heart. She knew that if anything were to threaten her life again, she was positive she was going to heaven. I want to say I guess I know how it feels like now to know that I am going to heaven whenever I will have to face death. When I fully woke up that morning after an unusual dream, I remembered thinking, “Thank You for not taking me yet, You know I still have so much I want to do and I want to do them for You.”

By His Grace, Sheela (via sheelaleigh.com)

 

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Made In His Image

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The first 10-20 minutes of your morning sets the tone for the rest of your day. I’ll be honest, I don’t read my Bible everyday, but I still try to fill my head with positive things so it’s actually a joy getting up out of bed. Looking through Tumblr is sometimes a distraction, so I change things up. I don’t know about you but this one’s a must for me. How do you spend the first few minutes of your day?

NOTE: This will be a future vlog and/or devotional.

By His Grace, Sheela (via sheelaleigh.com)

 

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Lace Up

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Father God, I love focusing on You. I know I don’t do it all the time, but when I do I remember how awful life is when I don’t. Every time You bring me to that point, I’m so grateful because I get to choose to want to change again. And every time I want to trade my heart for Yours, You do this wonderful thing that transforms my mind. It’s an awakening that doesn’t get old. And when that happens, I’m better than yesterday and wiser than before. If I have fallen off track, You make ways for me to get back on. You’re always rooting for me and You know that I have what it takes to keep following You. Your grace is enough for me to do Your will. Wherever I turn it’s there to remind me just how awesome Your will is, that is Your plans are greater than mine. When I focus on You, I care so much more about the people in my life. I feel alive when I love with that love You freely give. Thank You for Your glory.

So I’ve been feeling the blues these past couple of  weeks. I can’t blame God but I am angry because my hormones drive me crazy and maybe I’m mad at the weather too. I’m not my usual self. I haven’t got the energy to get up early to do my morning jogs because it’s cold. Well I know my body will warm up once I get going but still it’s so chilly leaving the comforts of my own blankets. There’s four of them because one is not enough, and for some reason my bedroom is also the coldest room in the house. Wow, I feel so much better than when I started. I take it that God is truly pleased when I journal or blog. Why did I even take a break? Oh yeah, I was feeling the blues. I’m trying to do so much at once. I’m trying to finish my first e-book and the site that allows me to do this for free can only give me 30 pages….that’s including the book cover and an intro and whatever else I need before page 1 actually starts, so I’m only left with 27 pages and my subtitle indicates that it’s a prayer for every day of the month. How is this going to work?! I really don’t know what to do now and I keep tweaking every sentence. I’ve been spending my mornings clearing the clutter in my parents’ office. The loft is next and these folks definitely don’t know how to keep things tidy. My aunt came to visit over the holidays. She made me turn the first floor upside down with her. I give this lady an applause. She gets away with being a dictator because she did put order in the house. It was long overdue. So she’s gone and now I’m left with a couple rooms upstairs. It’s about time. I mean the rest of 2016 will look so much brighter for my family if every thing has a home and place. There’s so much to organize. I hope to make it in time for summer when we’re going to have our first garage sale. And I’m constantly thinking if I see less clutter maybe that should help me finish my book, because then I can really focus. I really don’t want to put another project aside…who knows, I’ll go off starting a new one because that’s what I tend to do, which now brings me to overthink. Am I decluttering because I’ve run out of sentences to write? It’s a Christian book I’m asking God to help me with but I’m realizing my focus is not on Him. My focus is making everything perfect. I’m also realizing my relationships aren’t as great as they were two weeks or so ago. I think I’m making it about myself again. I’ve got to start jogging. I keep telling myself to make more videos on my channel, but every day I’m still figuring out the best position for the lights, what backgrounds to use, how to set it to achieve the highest definition….my mind is bombarded with ideas and I want to do them all at once. I keep disappointing myself trying to make everything so perfect. Why must I have to eat five times a day?! Can’t I just have one big nutritious breakfast without going nuts for sugar later on?! It’s good I went back on Facebook. I have a friend who all these years still loves me and cares for me when I thought I had disappointed her badly. And another really nice friend all the way from London, whose kindness encourages me. He also told me about a pastor who I have grown to really enjoy listening to. His name is Paul Washer. I don’t know why I’ve never heard of him before. Anyway, pastor’s good. He makes me feel awful in a good way. So yeah, I tend to make things about me, but God as my witness knows my heart, and I’m still trying to get to know His. I’ll be running in a mini marathon today and will be part of the world’s biggest gathering of leprechauns for a cause. My sister got us registered for the St. Baldrick’s Foundation. It’s just awkward that this is happening before Valentine’s Day. This should be very good for me. This gives a good chance and reason to lace up.

By His Grace, Sheela (via sheelaleigh.com)

 

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Heart of Worship

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I believe we are, some more than others thirsty for truth. The ones who are the least aware of it, suffer the most. We show that void in the way we treat others, we show it in the way we cope with challenging situations, how we go about our day, how we handle our money, or how we talk to ourselves. We’re always searching to alleviate a hunger, a longing, a desire, a need, and we do it through endless resources the world provides. Spiritually, we are made to worship. Even atheists look up to something or someone influential. Biologically, we are made to procreate and work. So with that, it’s deeply rooted in us to strive for achieving greatness. But because we can’t physically and mentally do it all on our own without some sort of help, we turn to things and people that give us hope for guidance. We are after all the most intelligent animals. We are the only ones that cook our food. And now I turn it over to God. He made all the billions of neurons in my brain, all the hairs on my body, all the sand in all the world, all the stars I can’t even see, and everything else that’s just impossible to count. How the heck did He have me in mind before I came to be?

It’s faith that only God can grace a person with, and with it only He can give the ambition to walk by it. It matters who and/or what you worship. Is it a thing, a tangible object of perceived luck or power? Is it a person of great intellect and charisma, or an idol who enlightens you or awakens your third eye? Is it anything that takes up a lot of room in your heart, an obsession, whether it’s a burden in any way or a source of pride? Is it a trend, or principle that you feed most of you attention to? These are the very things we worship. But if you believe God graced you with the faith that all praise and worship belong to Him and Him only, then be joyful. He allows you to see that your problems are even smaller than a grain of sand. The more you worship Him, the bigger your faith is. The bigger your faith is, the bigger God reveals Himself to you, and the smaller every matter becomes.

Make God bigger than anything else. That includes, thoughts, ideas, and suggestions, that don’t point back to Him, situations that keep you up at night, people who do or say things that don’t encourage your spiritual growth, and things that only satisfy the mind and the flesh, but not the heart and soul. Whatever it is, submit it to the Lord, because if He isn’t the motive behind it all, you are choosing to put something else above Him. Make Him bigger than your emotions that come and go. God never comes and goes. As doubtful as we can be at times, He is always guiding us. He is persistent in reminding us through trials and victories that people and things will perish, but God will always remain. Set your mind on things above. Set your mind on Him because everything about Him remains. His ways are perfect. His love is unconditional. His presence abounds. His promises are true. His grace is sufficient. His forgiveness is complete. His mercy endures forever. His name is powerful. He does not change.

We become slaves to anything we magnify, meditate on, or give devotion to. That is what worship is. God calls us to be bondservants for Christ and not for any other “god”. He says you cannot serve two masters at once (Matt. 6:24). What things, people, or principles are taking up room in your heart? I believe that chronic anxiety, worry, stress, and fear stems from a divided heart, a heart that is not in tune or in harmony with God. A heart that is not solely sold to God is a heart conflicted with changing personalities, mood disorders, and depression. Don’t let the ways of this world conflict your heart. Let God convict it through complete commitment to Him. Let your heart be filled with Love. He is the only God who can make a person whole. And it is only when you are whole that others perceive you as a person of integrity.

1 Corinthians 6:17 But whoever is united with the Lord is one with Him in spirit. 

1 John 4:18 There is no fear in love. But perfect love drives out fear, because fear has to do with punishment. The one who fears is not made perfect in love.

Proverbs 4:23 Above all else, guard your heart, for everything you do flows from it.

By His Grace, Sheela (via sheelaleigh.com)

 

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The Purpose of Prayer

One of my favorite daily devotional books is called My Utmost For His Highest. It sums up everything I wish I could have put into my own words. God inspires great authors and He allows Oswald Chambers to encourage me to have a closer relationship with Him.

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“…one of His disciples said to Him, ‘Lord, teach us to pray…’” (Luke 11:1)

Prayer is not a normal part of the life of the natural man. We hear it said that a person’s life will suffer if he doesn’t pray, but I question that. What will suffer is the life of the Son of God in him, which is nourished not by food, but by prayer. When a person is born again from above, the life of the Son of God is born in him, and he can either starve or nourish that life. Prayer is the way that the life of God in us is nourished. Our common ideas regarding prayer are not found in the New Testament. We look upon prayer simply as a means of getting things for ourselves, but the biblical purpose of prayer is that we may get to know God Himself.

“Ask, and you will receive…” (John 16:24). We complain before God, and sometimes we are apologetic or indifferent to Him, but we actually ask Him for very few things. Yet a child exhibits a magnificent boldness to ask! Our Lord said, “…unless you… become as little children…” (Matthew 18:3). Ask and God will do. Give Jesus Christ the opportunity and the room to work. The problem is that no one will ever do this until he is at his wits’ end. When a person is at his wits’ end, it no longer seems to be a cowardly thing to pray; in fact, it is the only way he can get in touch with the truth and the reality of God Himself. Be yourself before God and present Him with your problems – the very things that have brought you to your wits’ end. But as long as you think you are self-sufficient, you do not need to ask God for anything.

To say that “prayer changes things” is not as close to the truth as saying, “Prayer changes me and then I change things.” God has established things so that prayer, on the basis of redemption, changes the way a person looks at things. Prayer is not a matter of changing things externally, but one of working miracles in a person’s inner nature.


This is a book I highly, highly recommend for anyone who struggles to focus on the Word like myself, or anyone who just wants to step up their walk with God. It’s 365 pages for every day of the year and the lessons never get old. It’s available on Amazon as an e-book, which I should have bought before purchasing from Barnes & Noble. :/ Anyway, here is the link to save you 6 bucks… My Utmost for His Highest.

By His Grace, Sheela (via sheelaleigh.com)

 

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Thank You

It’s one thing to know I am alive. But to know Your presence, I am aware of the Holy Spirit living in me. You have not given up on me. No matter how much I have hated myself or despised this world, You don’t fail to remind me that You and I have a relationship. That commitment I made was the best decision You’ve ever revealed to me. That is probably the number one thing I am grateful for besides the countless blessings You’ve poured out on me. I am so small in this world, but Lord You prove to me through Your perfect love that my life matters so much to You. I am instantly humbled but confidently assured my life is in Your hands. I feel small yet great because You fill my heart with the richness of Your love. I gladly take it all, the joy, the peace, and the wisdom that comes flooding with Your love. It replaces my pride, fears, and sadness. What more could I want? To know You is to be filled with Your goodness. I am overwhelmed by Your grace. Grace came down to pursue my heart. When I discovered it was You, I fell madly and deeply in love. I realize You’ve never stopped chasing after my heart just to show me I am always in Your thoughts. You want my undying attention in all that I say and do so others can see You when I obey. My reward is You as You light my way. To know You is to seek Your face. Shine that light on me and I will reflect it back to You. These things would mean nothing if Your will never convicted me, but they matter to me because You’ve renewed my mind. You bring me back to the heart of worship, so with my utmost praise, I honor that Your will be done. I love You Lord. Amen.

By His Grace, Sheela (via sheelaleigh.com)

 

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