5 Things That Will Help to Strengthen Your Walk With Christ.


img_1429-1

I love 2 Timothy 3:16. So much so that I have made it my laptop screensaver to remind me. All Scripture is INSPIRED by God and useful to teach us what it true and to make us realize what is wrong in our lives.

There are so many things that we can do to strengthen our intimacy with Christ and this serves as a reminder to me to really make sure I dig into The Word and the truth daily. As I reflected on this Scripture today, I really started to think about things I do daily to strengthen my walk with Christ and I had to share these with you.

Below are 5 things that you can start TODAY to develop and strengthen this most important and precious relationship. The highest priority of your life is intimacy with Christ. This to me is so powerful and I hope these 5 steps help you to develop this intimacy.

  1. Study The Word DAILY. Ok, so I know this seems so obvious however, it is something that can easily slip through our busy lives if we allow it. Taking time to read and study The Word needs to be a routined habit and a part of each and every day. I personally have struggled with this at times during my life. It is so easy to get busy with life, family, business and goals that we shuffle Gods INSPIRED Word to the back burner. I do know however, that when I make this time to read Scripture and really study it, my whole day and outlook changes for the better. My suggestion is to carve out time  EACH DAY to study The Word. Make it a priority by waking a little earlier or finding a slow time during your day and literally designating this as your ‘special’ time in The Word. Even if its 30 min of focused time meditating on Scripture, it will compound its effectiveness in your life. You will be so pleased at what God teaches and reveals to you and how you open yourself up to GROW.
  2. Prayer. I had to learn to pray. Truth be told, I would pray first thing in the morning or at night while still in bed and I would find myself dozing off. I would wake and think “Oh my goodness, I totally fell asleep mid prayer!” How would you feel if you were conversing with someone and they just conked out? It would be pretty difficult to communicate. The same holds true with our relationship with The Lord. I had to learn several things here; I had to be AWAKE when I talked to Him and I had to do it when my mind and body was alert. Now, I find that I can literally pray (talk) to Him at absolutely any time of day! I speak to Him while I’m driving and I pray with my husband during the morning devotional time we set aside. The key is to be alert and to pray with an awakened heart. He loves you dearly and wants to communicate with you. This is a big piece of developing intimacy with Christ.
  3. Meditating on Gods Word. This sounds like it would go with #1 but true meditation is different than just studying Gods Word. Meditation requires us to get alone with God and to practice quiet stillness. We must practice LISTENING. What are His desires for us? What are His plans? How easy it is to practice studying The Word but to miss really connecting and listening to the WILL of God. So many times in our own chaos and fast paced life, we miss the most important piece of all. LISTENING to Christ and what He desires to tell us. Meditating daily gives Him time to really speak directly to our hearts.
  4. Nurture Your Temple. As 1 Corinthians 6:19 says ‘Don’t you realize that your body is the temple of the Holy Spirit, who lives in you and was given to you by God? You do not belong to yourself.’ WOW! I mean, this says it all. Taking care of your body and your temple is just another way to honor The Lord and to develop your relationship with Christ. When you feel good and you have energy, you can better do His work. Alex and I so firmly believe in this that it is our life work to help people rebuild their health and bodies. It is not about vain conceit but about being functional and able to do the work that we’ve been called to do.
  5. Take Account of Your Lifestyle. You know, when I really started to get serious about strengthening my relationship with Christ, it required me to look at my lifestyle. Every single thing from what I read, watched and participated in had to be filtered through one single question”Is this something that will honor Christ?” Each thing that you allow into your mind and heart is either used to build up His Kingdom or to break it down. Our world does a great job of grossly skewing our perceptions and we can pretty much justify anything. When you purify your daily walk, it purifies your relationship with Christ and allows Him to better get through to you.

In conclusion, I want to make sure you understand, we are not saved by works. As Ephesians 2:8-9 states ” For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith-and this is not from yourselves, it is the gift of God- not by works, so that no man can boast”

Nothing you can ever do in this world will buy you salvation. It is your faith and belief in Christ alone. Accepting His FREE gift and allowing Him to reside in your heart.

These 5 things above are ‘purifiers’ that allow us to really grow into the strong faith filled Christians we were MEANT to be. They have helped me to personally transform my relationship with Christ from just something I have read or heard about to someone I KNOW DEEPLY and LOVE WHOLEHEARTEDLY.

I pray that you are able to incorporate these things into your daily life and to develop a rich, meaningful intimacy with Christ unlike anything you have ever experienced. Just know, He knows YOU and He knows your heart. He will meet you right where you are.

God Bless,

Ashley Poptodorova

1462498274221

 

 

 

 

Let God Breath Life Into Your Dreams


il_570xn-551241132_aw35

So many times in my life, I sought to stretch and reach beyond my limits to achieve my dreams. I felt that pushing myself, motivating myself and doing things out of my own strength was necessary to produce results in my life. So many times I fell short and my strength dwindled. My drive was there but I was exhausted from the sheer effort I put forth only to see little return. I was doing things on my own strength and this never landed me very far.

Through many a trial and also many an ‘overcoming’ circumstance I have grown through this mentality to have a much different perspective. God has provided me with so many experiences to learn some very tough lessons and this is why it is on my heart to share this post about DREAMS with you.

My fresh perspective on my dreams is one that is pretty much against what the ‘world’ says is necessary to succeed. When I succumbed to The Lords plan for my life and laid it all at His precious feet, this is when life changed for me. Every single day, I make a conscious effort to lay my thoughts, dreams, desires and deepest passions at His feet.

I began to realize that my DREAMS were a part of His divine plan for my life and that these were birthed in me through Him. This means that The Lord knows the perfect place, timing and circumstance to bring my deepest burning desires to fruition. I know that this is so much easier said than done, but trust me, I have learned this through a lot of kicking screaming and hurtful circumstances.

Even knowing this truth, I tried to take my dreams and my life in my own hands and to no avail. Some of the greatest blessings of my life I lost because I tried to control out of my own sheer will and I did not rely on Gods precious timing.

This is my story and why we should allow God to work in each crevice of our lives and fully TRUST Him and have faith.

Back in 2012, Alex and I made the decision to sell our business. We had worked hard to build and grow this business for close to 8 years and it was blessed by The Lord and from no effort of our own. We worked hard but it was God that chose to bless it again and again. He placed us right where He wanted us for us to prosper and grow. We had pure well meaning hearts and an eager drive. God CHOSE to use this and to bless our work. He blessed our business, touched countless lives through it and we matured through our 20’s learning some of the richest lessons you could imagine.

Still, I had a burning desire in my heart to write and travel the world speaking.  I always felt like there was more. Instead of trusting where God had me in that season of my life, I chose to act out of my own will. I knew that The Lord blessed me with this talent of writing and speaking and I felt overwhelmed at times from the stresses of running our business. Now, I know and understand that this stress stemmed from our own lack of maturity and mismanagement in areas but then, I thought it was the ‘circumstances’ bringing on my stress.

Without really consulting with The Lord, Alex and I took it upon ourselves to sell our business. I remember we were given advice from mentors and those close to us not to sell and our clients were pretty devastated.

We didn’t seek out Gods will for our lives and we took our dreams into our own hands. Alex wanted to finish school to become an N.D. (Naturopathic Doctor, he is just months away now) and I felt like this was the perfect time for me to sit back and start writing the book that I feel has always been a part of the plan for my life.

Shortly after selling, I landed some amazing speaking engagements and travelled cross country for them. I was ecstatic! Why had I waited so long? My second true engagement ever was to over 500 people and I had the time of my life! I loved it. I felt like my dreams were finally coming true.

What I missed however, was that my dreams had been coming true for a decade! God had His perfect plan and in my eagerness, I rushed it. I took matters into my own hands and I thought perhaps my help was what he needed to speed things up. I failed to see that The Lord had me just where He wanted me and that He was maturing and growing me to step into all that He had planned for my life since before I was born. 

Not even one year later it became clear that things were not going to go as planned. Without going into detail (it is not important) we ended up losing the business we worked almost a decade to build. We fought it out in court and fought until we had no more strength, stamina or finances to fight. We were devastated and had to endure some of the ugliest months of deception, lies, betrayals and loss that you can ever imagine.

God was teaching us one of the largest lessons we would probably learn to date in our marriage and LIFE.

What is the lesson? Let Him breath life into the DREAMS that He created and formed for you. Who knows our most intimate desires more than Him? No one.

Who loves us and cares for us more than Him? Who cares for the divine PURPOSE on our lives more than Him? No one.

Fast forward almost 4 years later and God has given us back that which was stolen. Not without lessons learned and us having to prove ourselves. He has rebuilt our marriage, our business, our home and our finances. He has breathed life back into the places that I felt were dead.

Today, I still have the deep burning desire to write and speak all over the world. That DREAM is still in me but I am trusting God to see it through to it’s completeness.  The Lord blesses me with just enough to know that He sees and He cares.

He sees my deepest wishes and desires and I know He cares. After all Alex and I have been through, I know this truth: I cannot give that which I do not have. I need the lessons, experience, faith and trust and KNOWLEDGE of Him to fulfill this dream. I need to grow in His wisdom, strength and to be fully ready to take on the magnitude of this dream.

What is your deepest desire and biggest dream? Trust that though you may not be where you want to be in this process or perhaps you feel you are ‘ready’…  God knows the perfect timing for your dream to come to pass. He knows when you are ready and when you are not. He knows what needs to be done and the precious precise timing for it to come to pass.

I praise God that He cares for me, my life and my marriage enough that He gently held us in the palms of His great hands during these most trying times in our lives. I thank Him that He cared enough to teach us the error of our ways and that He gently reminded me in the deepest parts of my heart that it is HE who breaths LIFE INTO OUR DREAMS. I am thankful to Him for second (and third) chances and that even when we fail or fall short, it is He who helps to pick us back up. I can’t wait to see all that He has in store either for my life or my dreams either.

NO matter how grand and giant our plans and dreams are, they pale in comparison to the perfect, beautiful, grand plan the Lord has dreamt up for us. I long for this, His best. 

The Letter


It is amazing how one of the biggest moments of your life can come down to one written letter. A letter that you do not know how to write. Have you ever thought SO many ‘thoughts’ that you felt your mind would explode? I experience this every day but when that pen hits the paper, […]

[Continue reading...]

The Cost of Transparency


Based on my previous blog entry this week, I felt led to post this. The cost of transparency is GREAT. When you are real, raw and open you will face trials and persecution. You will displease people. You will not be popular. Feelings will get hurt at times and nerves will be touched. Transparency can (more […]

[Continue reading...]

God uses everything. This is my story.


Many times in my life, I have stopped to just ponder the power and impact of my life. Am I making a ripple in this world? Am I using the most of my God given talents? Is my life worth something? These are questions that I believe we ALL face at some point in our […]

[Continue reading...]

A Love That Covers ALL.


You are loved. How many times in life have you felt abandoned, sad, discouraged or unloved? Are you feeling this way right now, in this very moment? This is for YOU. So many times in my life, I was left searching for so many things to fill the hole in my heart. I had so […]

[Continue reading...]

Becoming a Prayer Warrior, my Life’s Purpose. Ashley Poptodorova


I really feel that The Lord has been putting “prayer” on my heart for sometime now. Seeking out the deeper, more meaningful purpose of prayer (besides just my waking & bedtime routine) has become a mission to me. I want to understand prayer through Gods eyes and how to pray in a way that it […]

[Continue reading...]

When God Blesses.


Have you ever experienced a totally unexpected awesome blessing from God? I love when this happens! The most exciting, adventurous and unexpected blessings of my life have produced the greatest JOY in my life and have ONLY come from Christ. When we are patient in our lives and focused on His word, it is amazing […]

[Continue reading...]

Take Your Thoughts Captive: The Importance of Stopping Negative Self Talk & How to Begin Loving Yourself.


I want to talk to you today about your “self talk”. This is just one component of your life that is vitally important to your physical & emotional health. It has a greater impact on you than even the words spoken from others. You see, you can avoid those who speak negativity into your life. […]

[Continue reading...]

Gain Control of Your Health: 6 things to start doing immediately- Ashley Poptodorova


Hi Fitness friends and health buffs! Alex and I wanted to provide you with our top 5 things that you can start doing immediately to gain control of your health. Remember, being healthy is so much more than just hitting the gym! It is about how you feed, nourish and care for your body. The…

[Continue reading...]
%d bloggers like this: