Monday, December 11, 2017

Looking for a way in...


Triumphant Victorious Reminders



As Paul greeted in every letter, so I echo, "God's grace and peace be unto you in Jesus name". His supernatural power to empower us to rise above shame and sin along with making our crooked paths straight. That alone amazes me. 

As my husband reminded me this morning, just think, GOD is always looking for a way in - never a way out. His love wants to bleed into our relationships with family, friends, coworkers, neighbors, etc. to cause us to fight FOR one another in prayers of His Word and covering. 

As we look for a way IN to keep our relationships; some may have co-parts that don't and are looking for a way OUT. It is now my prayer for those to begin to look not for a way out; but press INTO HIM! It takes brave ones to look for a way in. 

Jesus is our greatest example. 

How do we not quit? 
How do we not allow weariness to make us want to give up? 
We focus on Jesus Who doesn't know quit - HE has wit to make us laugh with no fear of the future because HE is our future and HE has our future. 

HE has you, your future, your children and HE is your faith to faith. HE is your glory to glory. He is your perpetual increase. 

Today I am reminded that we are runners of faith that run with and to Jesus Who is our Finish - we are no longer runners that run from hard - we are equipped to do hard WITH HIM so when others watch you and marvel, it is so we can glorify HIM yet again. 

The Triumphant Victorious Reminder is simply this: Miracles take place in the midst of hard; never the easy.

Friday, December 8, 2017

Questions/Ponderings...

Triumphant Victorious Reminders
www.LetsTalkStudio.com



If you told me who you were, would you be able to do so without describing what you do?
Think about that question.

Who are you really?
What is it about "you" that causes the earth to be wow'ed by your place in this world?
What is it about "you" that causes the earth to be wow'ed In this time?

Let me help you with those questions...this is who you really are...you are a child of the Most High God. He doesn't want to just be known as "Master" - HE now wants you to know HIM as "Father"/"Husband" (Hosea 2:14-15).

How about God? Would you be able to describe WHO HE is, for WHO HE IS?
Or would our assessment and description of GOD be a list made up of what HE has done or how HE has "performed"? Yikes. Just asking that to myself causes me to be quickened to our GOD, as there is no one like HIM...NO ONE!

Do you know that HE knows you?
Do you know that HE loves you?
Do you know that HE is ETERNALLY faithful to equip you with HIS grace so that you can share with others how much HE loves them?
Do we know HIM intimately?
Do we really know HIM?

These are questions I have been asking myself; ponderings causing another level of awakening of WHO GOD truly is and WHO HE truly is within me.
That TRUTH in and of itself is daunting, isn't it?
It leaves me awestruck to say the least.

Here's another question I ask myself, and now I ask you:
Is the focus of "the call" on your life wooing you away from The Heavenly Father? What?!! Yes! Believe it or not, if we are not careful and our focus is more on our call, then we could be led astray by what we "think" we need to do in our call.

Wow! To even ask that causes a paradigm shift of sorts.
Think about it, so many of us are focused on what we believe GOD has called us to, that we forget to continuously be mindful of The AUTHOR of our life; THE ONE WHO HAS CALLED US. When we are continuously mindful of Holy Spirit, HE will show us how to do what HE has called us to. Here's how...when we begin to become familiar with HIM, investing time with HIM in prayer, even our questions - ask HIM and watch Holy Spirit guide you through The Word of God. In this we will realize our purpose is simple, it's to be a minister of GOD's reconciliation. We will all display and convey that uniquely, but just as it says in 2 Corinthians 5:11-21, as Christ reconciled us back to The Father, so that is what we are to do for others.

This life is an intentional assignment in which we get to have intimacy with GOD to walk intentionally in every area because we have the freedom to do so in Christ. Crazy! Amazing!

The bottom line...we are sons and daughters of GOD...ministers of GOD'S reconciliation.

This is not to be haphazardly redundant, but to be intentionally redundant...Again, In HIM our calling is profoundly simple - to be ministers of GOD's reconciliation.

Here's the TRIUMPHANT VICTORIOUS REMINDER today:
We get to point others to the FATHER by how we treat ourselves and one another.

Friend, let me remind you - you have GOD's approval - and HIS PRE-approval of you, even before you began living for HIM is the very TRUTH that will cause us to want to go higher in HIM and help others to do the same.

"Christ died for everyone so that those who receive his new life will no longer live for themselves. Instead, they will live for Christ, who died and was raised for them. So we have stopped evaluating others from a human point of view. At one time we thought of Christ merely from a human point of view. How differently we know HIM now! This means that anyone who belongs to Christ has become a new person. The old life is gone; a new life has begun! And all of this is a gift from God, who brought us back to Himself through Christ. And GOD has given us this task of reconciling people to Him..." - 2 Corinthians 5 (Excerpt 2 Corinthians 5:15-18).
.

Saturday, September 23, 2017

Me, Narcissistic? What?


Transparency; yet I don't feel condemned; walking in greater Freedom...

"Me, narcissistic?" Wait Lord! Is this really You God? Or is this the enemy hurling accusations?

Then I heard, "Why do you pray for them?"

Me: Because I am tired of this. They make life so difficult for people.
Holy Spirit: Teresa, why do you pray for them?
Me: Lord, is this a trick question?
Holy Spirit: Teresa, what is your motive in praying for them?
Me: Lord, I don't know. I thought it was because I was supposed to. Lord, may I ask, where you're going with this? 
Holy Spirit: Yes. I want you to know the motive of your heart and I want you know MY motives so you echo MY heart.
Me: Okay Lord. I'm scared to know my motive.
Holy Spirit: You will never loosely say someone is narcissistic again because what I Am about to show you.
Me: Okay Lord.

Oh my goodness! All that unfolded was heart opening which caused my eyes to see HIM in ways that still causes my heart to beat with passion.

Amazingly enough, I learned that many times when I prayed for people it was so that "my" life would be easier. I was praying for people to be freed so "my" life would be toxic free; I prayed for them because of what "I" wanted. I was seeing them as an obstacle and not as a person that just needed to be freed and delivered; just like I do. 

Meanwhile, it's funny because the freedom and deliverance that I need may not be as "ugly" as someone else's, but I still need to walk in God's freedom and deliverance that is ongoing, perpetual and unfolding! When Holy Spirit highlighted my heart, it actually was so incredibly freeing and suddenly Holy Spirit made me aware to pray for people with God's passion to believe they would be set free from the lies of the enemy and walk in truth so they are no longer robbed in this life!

Again, it's crazy because I wasn't praying to desire freedom for them; I was praying for them to live free so I wouldn't be embarrassed by them! I was getting upset when they were doing and saying things so much so that I was even praying that God would remove them from my life. It's such a humanistic way of seeing it. It's seeing it with poverty mindset, with lack and now as my mindset has shifted, I am seeing how Holy Spirit is changing my prayers to believe that they will be respectful in life and show honor so they are not robbed of living a blessed life. Simply wanting them to be FREE in Christ and getting to live a blessed life.

Think about this: I was "loving" people because of what they could do for me and how they made me feel and even look, instead of befriending them because I was simply honored to be their friend no matter what.

Just think...we have even gone into relationships whether in friendships or marriage because of how the other person made us feel; and then many times we want to leave the friendship or relationship because they don't make us feel the way we used to. I was using people to fulfill an insatiable appetite of wanting to be fulfilled versus wanting to be there for people because God simply loves them because He loves them and I could stand in that place as a vessel for His glory!

In these moments, I am being free as Holy Spirit is so kind to keep my motives in check; when I'm doing good things to make me feel better, I simply get reminded to do it for the "God reason" and that's because I can do what's good because it's good and pleasing to the Lord and it helps someone else.

Remember, even when we let go of relationships because we know we must; our prayers for them change. We plead for them with God's love and that's because of who they are to God.

Saturday, August 26, 2017

Since my last entry...


Has it really been that long? Since May?

How incredible to know that my last entry bookmarked the end of a school year and now a new one has begun. I was thinking back...all that has gone on since May.  From the people I didn't know and would get to meet, wondering how I never knew them all my life until now; to those I've met up with for a cup of coffee or flown to see; times of celebration; abrupt loss of someone well loved; hilarious surprises; depressing disappointments; seeming failures and anticipated victories. Yet in all of those moments, each one required availability. Being available to the people within the moments and people making themselves available to me within their moments. Seasons pass filled with memorable moments, each of them rolled up like a scroll filled with lessons to be learned. If you look a little closer you can see the lessons in the midst. In the middle of life's "day to days", each of them gained our attention. Some gained our laughter and tears while others fueled our worries and fears. Yet all the while GOD made HIMSELF available at every moment beckoning us to draw near. I have been learning that what I considered a disappointment, an interruption or an attack was another opportunity for me to see abundance instead of lack. With that said, yielding one of the greatest weapons as it changes paradigms, perspectives and causes crooked things to be made straight. Do you want to know what that weapon is? It's one I talk about often, it's the beautiful weapon called GRATEFULNESS.  When we finally grab the weapon of gratefulness, it is for the purpose of being able to effortlessly praise GOD so that HE is recognized in the midst of it all. Gratefulness brings us to our knees in awe of HIM and HIS splendor and majesty. Today's Triumphant Victorious Reminder leans me into hear how Holy Spirit wants us to see how HE turns our disappointments that are on people and even ourselves; and make them into divine appointments with HIM. Divine appointments to see HIS character of unending, unparalleled EXCELLENCE that makes the most integritable human being on earth still look reckless in comparison to HIM.  Love people because HE does and it's only HIS doing through us. As Bob Goff might say, "We don't hold onto love like it was in short supply; we give it away freely like we are made of it...we're rivers not reservoirs."Scripture References: Ecclesiastes 3:1-8; Philippians 4:6-9; Psalm 100:4; Isaiah 64:6; Ephesians 3:20

Thursday, May 18, 2017

Here's what's new...

Triumphant Victorious Reminders
Inspired by Holy Spirit
Written by: Teresa Ann

To say it's been a while since I last posted on Triumphant Victorious Reminders is definitely an understatement. Since my last post however some great things have unfolded during that time. As some may know, I love to encourage and celebrate others and so with that, GOD has brought me on this extraordinary journey to "spotlight" seemingly ordinary people who possess extraordinary GOD stories!

So without further ado, here's the revealing...

LET'S TALK with Teresa Ann is officially aired and I wanted to personally invite you to watch and listen to the "Motivational Monday" from this past week along with watching past interviews with amazing women who have stories of God's rescue, redemption, restoration and reconciliation.



Oh yes and feel free to click here to check out our new website. What's even more exciting is coming soon there will be an online shop with my branding partner and friend of 30 years, Celina who is the "creative" behind LET'S TALK with Teresa Annand founder of Pearls In Bloom. Celina is that friend who never got embarrassed of me when I would do those immature, irresponsible things before my walk with Christ, yet she was the one who would be embarrassed "for" me and continuously give me truth and defend me even when I least deserved it! This woman is an amazing friend and I thank GOD for her on a daily basis. Anyways, her upcoming site will be linked to mine at LET'S TALK and you will find it's a place where you can find great gifts for friends, family and even yourself as each gift will leave a lasting mark of God's handiwork of WHO HE IS! You will find that each item is a reflection from each of my past interviews!

This is larger than what I could have ever imagined and this journey reminds me of Ephesians 3:20, "HE is able to do the exceedingly abundantly above all you could ever hope, dream or imagine ACCORDING to that power that works within us." Now that's amazing - we see the crazy abundance when we realize HIS power is at work within us to be revealed in the earth for HIS glory!

Besides my incredible husband, one of our biggest supporters is JJ McKearnen. JJ's the one who you want in your corner. He's the one GOD sends to those who are in need of encouragement and a "sideline" shout to "Keep going!" So J.J.,  this is a BIG "Thank you" to you for all you do for others! You are truly a blessing!

Lastly, to each of my TVR readers, thank you for your continued support, feedback and subscriptions to this current blog along with my new website. Please feel free to visit, subscribe and share my new YouTube channel. Please know and remember that your support is incredibly helpful and greatly appreciated!

www.LetsTalkStudio.com
https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCU7bi3JmdRQB8vxopnNcYOQ/videos
Instagram: @Lets_Talk_Studio

Monday, April 10, 2017

Motivating Versus Deactivating

Triumphant Victorious Reminders
Inspired by Holy Spirit
Written by: Teresa Ann



When a team of people are not stirring in prosperity and creativity, it is most likely not just the fault of the team - it might be a combination of both the team and the leader.

Are we leading others by manipulation, lies, intimidation and/or fear?
Are we insulting them in front of others and actually believe the lie that they will be greater producers due to humiliation?
Or are we leading by encouragement and recognizing our family/teams strengths and allowing them to thrive?

A leader gives the "why" to what is expected so understanding comes and fewer mistakes are made when they know the reason.

A true leader takes time to appreciate their people and highlight the victories and wins; acknowledge the mistakes and teach the team how even in the fails, there's a learning lesson of what not to ever do again - every fail can become a win if and more importantly when we learn from them.

The triumphant, victorious reminder in all of this is that many times acceleration to success are usually disguised from the learned mistakes.

No more shame - now get up in Christ and do this in HIM - strength will be revealed in HIS great joy and watch HIS grace be revealed yet again!

Scripture References:
Romans 8:1

Tuesday, March 7, 2017

Who's writing your story?

Triumphant Victorious Reminders
Inspired by Holy Spirit
Written by: Teresa Ann


Many times when we pray, we pray from a place of fear. A fear of loss, a fear of "the going ons" in life not going the way we would hope or want. However today, when we pray, let's proclaim that we know WHO we are praying to...then from that place of knowing WHO we proclaim - doubt has to go and faith emerges to be fixed on GOD the AUTHOR of our lives. HE already has plans - HE already knows about the trouble to come and HE already has the plans to overcome; plans for a good future and a hope - and although trouble comes in the midst - if we stay fixed on HIM - trouble only has to be a fleeting part of the unfolding story.
Think about this, "trouble" has for far too long been the main character of so many chapters of the lives we have written - YET GOD has a STORY - HE'S not playing catch up with us...quite the contrary, we are catching up to HIS unfolding story of GRACE.
HE must be the MAIN CHARACTER of our stories - from the fleeting tragedies to the passing triumphs - HE must be our story - HE must be the MAIN EVERYTHING...HE must BE the SETTING, THE INTRODUCTION, THE PLOT, THE HERO AND THE END - we live because HE authored us to be a part of HIS story; not the other way around. So now when we pray, let's keep that in mind. HIS pen is writing.
Will we let HIM write our stories? Let's remember that The "Kingdom of God is righteousness, joy and peace in the Holy Spirit".
Psalm 139:16, "You saw me before I was born. Everyday of my life was recorded in YOUR book before one of them came to be."
Scripture References:
Jeremiah 29:11
John 16:33
Psalm 139:16
Romans 14:17

Monday, March 6, 2017

Lesson of Repentance

Triumphant Victorious Reminders
Inspired by the Holy Spirit
Written by: Teresa Criswell
(Repost: Written January 18, 2012)

"Or do you despise the riches of His goodness, forbearance, and longsuffering, not knowing that the goodness of God leads you to repentance?"
~ Romans 2:4 ~

Slipping back into time, it was 1988; my eighth grade year. My parents experienced grueling frustration as they were continuously receiving reports from my teachers of me carrying on in class, not taking my classes seriously and consistently getting into trouble for being one of the 'class clowns'.

In hind sight, as a parent myself, the acting out wasn't their greatest frustration; it was my overall attitude of not caring, which to say the least, my grades mercilessly reflected.

Meanwhile, during this time, I still remember my wonderful dad. I shake my head in awe as my dad continuously believed in me. He would even say in the darkest times of my life, "Teresa, God has a great plan for you." I can still remember being in the awkward 'skin' of a young teenage girl; it was one of those situations where I sadly could not receive his words because of the inner turmoil stirred by insecurity and unworthiness stemmed from not knowing the value from within. The concerns of what the outsiders thought was more important to me than the ones who loved me the most.

Reminiscing this particular moment my eighth grade year is in regards to my dad (Including my mom and sisters) who never gave up. Although there were times he was justifiably on the brink of seeing no hope in sight, I can still remember that moment in eighth grade as though it were this very moment.

I remember it like this:
Dad set his schedule aside and asked me to come down to the light and airy family room. He brought two chairs and placed them in the middle of the 'love-filled' room adjacent to the red brick fireplace. He had me take my seat as he walked away for a moment into another room. When dad came back, he was holding a medium sized cardboard box with certificate frames inside. He had my full attention as I wondered, "What is he doing?"

Curiosity detained me in the midst of my dad's quiet demeanor. He sat down and now we were practically knee to knee. He looked at me with his soft hazel eyes, framed by his glasses and began to speak life into me. I remember how he began to one by one, show and tell me of his accomplishments backed up by the certificates in his possession. One of his accomplishments that I still remember so vividly was the one in which he graduated number one in his class for morse code in the ARMY. For a moment I was captivated by this untapped perseverance, integrity and tenacity that I had not yet chosen to experience for myself. Looking back, I am still in awe of my dad who chose to possess these attributes even after the setbacks of his own choices and did not allow his original choice of becoming a high school drop out stop him from pursuing the greatness that God placed within him. Dad revealed in his story as he patiently spoke to me how in one moment I could make a choice to turn it all around for good. He was showing me the power of repentance.

This reminder of this teaching moment from my dad with me, reveals a glimpse of how the goodness of God leads man to repentance. It was the goodness of my dad and his love expressed over me that enabled me to finally receive the message of God's rescuing power from sin and myself by turning away from my old ways and clinging to the new ways that God abundantly provided, revealing life and prosperity in my spirit from Jesus Christ. My family believed in God for many years, in spite of what it looked like, they would not allow my actions to trump God's promise as they continued to pray His abundant life to finally be received by me.

Perhaps there are those of you who may know part of my story as it took more than a decade to finally get to the point that I truly knew in my heart I needed to be rescued from one of my greatest enemies ~ myself. This incredible beginning took place on March 6, 2003. Actually, let me back up, interestingly enough, it was five months before my incredible beginning that my dad and mom flew to  Michigan to come see us and gift me with a ring that he designed just for me in October of 2002 (He also did this for my sisters who were already following after Jesus).



I remember when I put it on my finger my dad said, "Whenever you look at this ring, say a prayer for your mom and I." I remember thinking, "Yeah right...they know I don't pray." Well, I truly believe that the ring I still wear 'til this day was truly a 'point of contact' from my parents prayers of hope in God over my life to be redeemed and restored back to Him. The moment from my eighth grade year was a defining reminder of discovering the power of repentance; allowing God's Holy Spirit to rule and reign over my life.

I am reminded that my dad took on a glimpse of the perseverance, integrity and tenacity of Jesus Christ which was victoriously revealed at the Cross of Calvary. Death, hell and the grave shook in fear as they surrendered all power to Jesus as God raised Him from the dead!

The reminder set before me is realizing yet again God's glorious power as He sent His Word Jesus to become a mere man to pay the debt of sin as He 'suffered long' even while we are known to be 'quick to quit'.

We must remember when we find ourselves being faithless, get rid of doubt and allow faith to rise up as we remember that He is still faithful even when we aren't (II Timothy 2:13).

Wednesday, March 1, 2017

Awakening Reminders

Triumphant Victorious Reminders
Inspired by the Holy Spirit
Written by: Teresa Ann♡



Pic courtesy of Mikey McCall


Reminder to Ponder:

What if it was never about just you or me?
Have we ever considered that it wasn't solely about what we desire or "need"...but more about others and WHO they need?

I think of Desmond Doss, the real life character from the movie, Hacksaw Ridge...he never prayed for GOD to protect HIM, instead HE prayed, "GOD! I can't hear YOUR voice...Please LORD, help me get one more...help me get one more." In that prayer, he alone by the power of GOD saved over 70 men on what some consider as the bloodiest battlefield of World War II while never using his weapon. To see the character of a man immovable; he was steadfast to the core of believing in this GOD WHO is righteous and just - no matter how often he was mocked, threatened, and beat for his faith in GOD; he remained true to see the value in every human being - even to the point of saving lives from the warring enemies.

Does his life sound familiar? His life reminds me of JESUS and WOW how the Spirit of Jesus operated through Desmond.

Are we upset because we haven't found people who have come alongside us?
Are we growing dissatisfied because our spouse doesn't "fulfill" our needs?
Are we angry because we see others in church or in our community being surrounded by friends, but we're all alone?

Those questions alone reveal the crying out for self - versus the crying out for someone else. Perspective must shift as we reflect on JESUS WHO is FOR US and in that we begin to ask:

Have I found someone I can come alongside and give my best to as JESUS has for me?
How can I fulfill the needs of my spouse as The Spirit of GOD has fulfilled mine?
What can I do to surround someone else and be a friend so they don't feel alone?

Truly think on these things with a grateful heart. For in doing so it causes us to make sure we never allow the "numbers game" become a game in our heads. Remember, it isn't about the number of people we know that matters; it's about each individual knowing they simply matter.

Triumphant Victorious Reminder:
"There is no greater love than to lay down one's life for one's friends."
- John 15:13


Reflection From God's Word:
To lay one's life down is not just about physically dying for someone - but are we willing to lay down our pride for someone else, even if we feel they don't "deserve" it?

Prayer:
Father, in the Name of Jesus, by the power of your Holy Spirit - I am aware of YOU and YOUR greatness - YOUR power - YOUR glory. Even the heavens declare YOUR glory, and I want my declarations to cause the heavens to take notice of my awe of YOU. I surrender my life to YOU GOD by saying YES to JESUS and allowing YOUR HOLY BREATH, revealed by YOUR HOLY SPIRIT to be more moved by YOUR LOVE for others. I give you my desires and receive the GREAT EXCHANGE of YOUR DESIRES GOD. I love you with my everything so YOUR LOVE can pour over me and flood my soul so I can love myself with YOUR VAST LOVE so I am loving others with YOUR LOVE that flows through me like a rushing river. Thank YOU Father. I love you Lord. In Jesus mighty name - Amen.





Friday, January 20, 2017

Did you know?

Triumphant Victorious Reminders
Inspired by the Holy Spirit
Written by: Teresa Criswell



So much has happened over the last 13 years of my life since I FINALLY said, "Yes to Jesus!"

All those moments being drawn to go deeper into the roots of GOD and HIS righteousness and wanting to know this GOD who in HIS love and redemption extended HIS mighty hand and said, "Let's do this...you may not believe in ME, like you want, and you may not believe in yourself, but I believe in you for I see what's about to bloom and the fragrance of MYSELF you will leave behind..."

That alone is a "doubt destroying" thought into a "faith exposing" life in wanting GOD more and more as HE beckons us to draw closer to WHO HE IS.

Did you know there was a time I was so far away that I truly thought life didn't matter?
Did you know that the very words you read were never even a thought in those moments of waywardness?
Did you know I was so deceived in my waywardness that I thought I was on my way to fulfillment?

BUT...
- Do you truly know that no matter how far I went - it didn't change how close HE was?  Like my middle sister would tell me so often, "Teesa, remember you can take a million steps away from GOD, but take one step back and HE's right there..."
- Do you truly know that I can't imagine my life without THE WAY and HIS name is JESUS?
- Do you truly know that fulfillment will never come except through The Fulfiller of Abundant Life Himself - the ONLY ONE who can COMPLETE US when others only have the ability to compliment...big difference wouldn't you say?

Today, be encouraged and lean into HIM by reading and hearing the WORD OF GOD...be aware of HIS SPIRIT that makes the WORD come alive and while you're at it...go visit my most recent YouTube channel, "Let's Talk TV Show" - it's just starting and so thank you for overlooking the "amateurity"...

Let God have the last word over your life and no one else...now that's a victorious and triumphant reminder of how to live!

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZvAoBsVPZdw&t=403s