Graceful Perseverance: By His Authority – 12/16

Welcome to this week’s blog. This week let’s focus on God’s authority over the heavens, and on earth and in our lives. The words I write are my personal interpretation that are supported and backed up by scripture.

Then Jesus came to them and said, All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you. And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age. – Matthew 28:18-20.

Do you know and follow the commands of Jesus, Lord and Savior? By His authority, we are to obey His biblical instructions all the days of our lives. His commands are clearly laid out in scripture and apply to all people of all colors and of from all nations. Keep in mind, He asks this of us because He is the ultimate creator of heaven and earth and everything in it. Every man, woman and child is subject to God’s leading authority. And, if anyone shall resist His authority, they will incur judgment. By obeying His commands, we will find comfort and knowledge that as we fulfill His commandments, He is always with us. There should be no fear of doing wrong or to fear our enemies because He is by our side. I have given you authority to trample on snakes and scorpions and to overcome all the power of the enemy; nothing will harm you. However, do not rejoice that the spirits submit to you, but rejoice that your names are written in heaven. – Luke 10:19-20.

Let every person be subject to the governing authorities. For there is no authority except from God, and those that exist have been instituted by God. Therefore whoever resists the authorities resists what God has appointed, and those who resist will incur judgment. For rulers are not a terror to good conduct, but to bad. Would you have no fear of the one who is in authority? Then do what is good, and you will receive his approval, or he is God’s servant for good. But if you do wrong, be afraid, for he does not bear the sword in vain. For he is the servant of God, an avenger who carries out God’s wrath on the wrongdoer. Therefore one must be in subjection, not only to avoid God’s wrath but also for the sake of conscience . . . – Romans 13:1-7.

When Jesus left his disciples, He left them with a very important set of instructions during His absence that they were to fulfill until His return. Two thousand years ago the disciples were under the authority of Jesus when they were told to go and make more disciples. These historical instructions still apply to us today. All of us are to go out and baptize when we’ve been given authority to do so, and teach everyone why and how to obey God’s commandments. The historical instruction was worldwide then, and remains the same today.

Whether we are traveling to our next-door neighbors or down the street or to our neighboring cities, states and countries, we are to make disciples just as Jesus’ disciples were instructed too two thousand years ago. This is not an option, but a command for those of us who call Jesus Lord and Savior.

Just as God gave His son Jesus authority over heaven and earth, Jesus has instructed the same upon all believers. Draw them near. Lead them to me.  When Pilate took Jesus and had Him flogged he said to Jesus, Don’t you realize I have power either to free you or to crucify you? Jesus answered, You would have no authority over me at all unless it had been given you from above. Therefore he who delivered me over to you has the greater sin. – John 19:10-11.

Who has authority to forgive sins or heal each other? Not even the Pope has authority over God to forgive sins or perform miraculous healings unless the authority has been given to them from above. It’s easy to tell someone their sins are forgiven, but it’s a lot more difficult to miraculously heal someone. It is only through Jesus’ words and actions that He has the power to forgive and heal. As humans, our words lack meaning if our actions cannot back them up or we haven’t been granted the authority to do so by God. We can say we love God or others, but if we are not taking practical steps to prove our love, our words are unfulfilled and pointless without actions or instruction from God to do so.

But I want you to know that the Son of Man has authority on earth to forgive sins. So He said to the paralyzed man, Get up, take your mat and go home. Then the man got up and went home. When the crowd saw this, they were filled with awe; and they praised God, who had given such authority to man. – Matthew 9:6-8.

Blessings until next week,

Debra M. Pauli
Unstoppable Believer

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Graceful Perseverance: The Witness – 12/09/2018

Welcome to this week’s blog. Who is the “witness”? As I always do, let’s turn to the authority on the subject together. Open your bibles and turn to Isiah 43:10-11. You are my witnesses. Who is the Lord referring to in His word? . . . You are my witnesses, declares the Lord, and my servant whom I have chosen, so that you may know and believe me and understand that I am He. Before me no god was formed, nor will there be one after me. I, even I, am the Lord, and apart from me there is no savior. – Isiah 43: 10-11.

I  believe you and I were both created in God’s image. From inception we were designed and predestined to be His witnesses. We are to live out our lives by example for others. The means by which we fulfill this responsibility is by sharing our faith, His miracles, His blessings and His light. As far as the north is to the south and the east is from the west, we are to reach all. Whether you are a Christian and you believe in an eternal life or whether you haven’t found the true meaning of your life; henceforth, you have no hope in an eternal life beyond this life, we are all still His witnesses. This is not my declaration, but His undeniable promise throughout His word.

As a witness today, my greatest joy is to share who God is and what He has done in my own life with the world. As Christians, we all share the same responsibility of being God’s witness through our life experiences, our words, our actions and to live by example. You may not see God today, but nor do I, but if I am a true witness, you will see Him reflected in me. In the same way, let your light shine before others, so that they may see your good works and give glory to your Father who is in Heaven. – Matthew 5:16.

There was a man sent from God whose name was John. He came as a witness to testify concerning that light, so that through him all might believe. He himself was not the light, he came only as a witness to the light. – John 1:6-8.

We live in an unbelieving world. But the promise of scripture leaves no confusion with God’s intent for His believers, His witnesses. Jesus Christ is the true light, believers or witnesses are mere reflections of His light. We are to present ourselves as the light to others, even in the midst of darkness. We are to point others to Christ, the light. As witnesses, we have received the power of the Holy Spirit, the helper who lives in us and will remain in us to the end of this life. But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you, and you will be my witnesses in Jerusalem and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the end of the earth. – Acts 1:8.

I am honored to be a witness to the light. My heart honors Christ the Lord as holy. I am always prepared to defend Him with kindness and reverence against anyone, for any reason, who may or may not know the light. For you will be a witness for Him to everyone of what you have seen and heard. – Acts 22:15. 

But in your hearts revere Christ as Lord. Always be prepared to give an answer to everyone who asks you to give the reason for the hope that you have. But do this with gentleness and respect, keeping a clear conscience, so that those who speak maliciously against your good behavior in Christ may be ashamed of their slander. – 1 Peter 3:15-16.

I am always willing and prepared to share with others what Christ has done in my life. My testimony is miraculous, exactly why I am a witness today. I believe our lives take many different twists and turns, depending on our choices and then the outcome. I know at times in my own life, I have made a mess when I’ve taken control while anxiously awaiting my prayers to be answered. I’ve proven it over and over again in my life that when we take matters into our own hands, rather than entrusting the grace and strength of our Lord, Jesus Christ, our creator, and the Holy Spirit our helper, we experience a greater level of suffering.

You then, my son, be strong in the grace that is in Christ Jesus. And the things you have heard me say in the presence of many witnesses entrust to reliable people who will also be qualified to teach others. Join with me in suffering, like a good soldier of Christ Jesus. – 2 Timothy 2:1-3.

What falls from my lips is the truth. This truth lies within my own life experiences and the faith I’ve acquired through trusting my creator. He promises to never leave me or forsake me, but to see me through the pain and suffering of this fallen world. Let my role as a witness help teach you that until you’ve established and pronounced a holy relationship with the one and only Savior, Jesus Christ, Lord of Lords, your face will continue to turn away in deception. A truthful witness saves lives, but one who breathes out lies is deceitful. – Proverbs 14:25.

Blessings until next week,

Debra M. Pauli
Unstoppable Believer

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Graceful Perseverance: Deliberate Brokenness – 12/02

Welcome to this week’s blog. The most powerful blog topics are our real life experiences that are occurring in the moment, our real time situations.

How can any of us gain understanding of what is happening to us in our lives? Why does God allow suffering, hardships, pain and sickness in our lives? Many believe if there is a God, none of us would suffer, experience hardships or sickness and pain in this life.  In order to understand what God is doing in any area of my life, I first need to understand His convictions whether I like them or not. Why does suffering, hardships, pain and sickness continue to repeat themselves in my life, in your life? This question applies to all of us.

For we do not want you to be ignorant, brothers, of the affliction we experienced in Asia. For we were so utterly burdened beyond our strength that we despaired of life itself. Indeed, we felt that we had received the sentence of death. But that was to make us rely not on ourselves but on God who raises the dead. He delivered us from such a deadly peril, and he will deliver us. On him we have set our hope that he will deliver us again – 2 Corinthians 1:8-10. 

Many of us continue to live a self-life independent of God and His will for our life. We believe if we pray daily He will answer our prayers. We believe if our prayers aren’t being answered in our timeframe, then we must take matters into our own hands, independent of God’s plan and purpose for our lives. Many people desire to live independently of God’s plan for their life. Many people tend to run from His process of breaking us down to build us back up for His purpose. Our characteristic tendencies are to avoid His process of reducing us to ashes at all costs. His plan is to simply build us back up for His glory, not ours. We were never created for our own personal gain, but for His glory, for His purpose.

In order to try and understand what God is doing in each of our lives we often find ourselves arguing with God and asking the same repetitive question “God, if you claim to love me why do you allow this hardship to keep happening in my life?” Why can I not stop this vicious cycle in my life? The good news is, God does have a purpose for our suffering, our repetitive hardships. Behold, I am doing a new thing; now it springs forth, do you not perceive it? I will make a way in the wilderness and rivers in the desert – Isaiah 43:19. His ultimate purpose is to bring every area of our lives, not just some areas, to submission of His will so that we learn to fully trust in Him and His plan for our lives. He desires us to live in full trust of Him and not of our own understanding of this world. This brokenness is the path to His blessings. I am a witness to this.

Proverbs 3:5-6 – Trust in thee Lord with all your heart, and do not lean on your own understanding. In all your ways acknowledge him, and he will make straight your paths.

Are there certain areas of your life in which you refuse to surrender self-control? Is it this area of your life that has God has targeted for brokenness? Surrender the inner desire to control your life and stop living independently of God.

The Holy Spirit, the spirit of God, indwells in me. In my life, He continues to target all areas of my life. For many, many years I have hindered God’s purpose and design for my life. Until I truly surrender my “self-will” control to Him, He will continue to allow hardships to be repetitive in my life. I know today what areas of my life I need to surrender body, soul and spirit to Him. He promises to live out all that is within me, because He is living through me. He has shown me what it means to “die to the self” to “lose this life” and submit to His will for my life.

More than that, we rejoice in our sufferings, knowing that suffering produces endurance, and endurance produces character, and character produces hope, and hope does not put us to shame, because God’s love has been poured into our hearts through the Holy Spirit who has been given to us – Romans 5:1-21.

Remember who you were made for? Christ, not self. He desires all of us to become living, walking expressions of Christ. Not just Sunday reflections. By this we to learn to no longer respond to “self-will” but submit to His will. Surrendering means you will be renewed day-by-day with momentary light afflictions that will bring great joy and peace to your life. I am a witness to this. Surrender and let God have His way with you! You will discover that God’s ultimate plan for your life supersedes your independent streak from Him. He will break us over and over again, in order to make us more like His son, Jesus Christ, our Lord and Savior.

Galatians 2:20 – I have been crucified with Christ. It is no longer I who live, but Christ who lives in me. And the life I now live in the flesh I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me.

Today I remain the master’s art, who molds me, shapes me and breaks me down to build me back up until I become more like His son. I no longer fear the loss of things of this world that are temporary compared to what God has willed for my life. I won’t allow myself to miss out on His blessings in this life or my eternal life with Him. I am totally and completely dependent on Him and His will for my life.

Blessings until next week,

Debra Pauli
Unstoppable Believer

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Graceful Perseverance: The Sword of the Spirit – 11/25/18

Welcome to this week’s blog. Just as soldiers must put on their full armor before going into battle, Christians and alike need to also learn to defend themselves against the evil battles of this world.

Every day we must be prepared to put on God’s full armor against those whom we come up against in battle. The Sword of the Spirit is the Word of God. I’m referencing scripture, the bible, God’s instructions for our lives. It will be your greatest defense against Satan’s attacks, his trickery, his temptations in your life. Whether you choose to believe or not, all of mankind, in every corner of the universe is in the midst of spiritual warfare. We are in the middle of a spiritual battle between God and Satan. For thousands of years now Satan has been relentless in his efforts to overthrow Christ as the ruler of the world to come. But Jesus skillfully and intentionally uses the Sword of the Spirit, scripture, to deflect every one of his attacks even today as Satan seeks to destroy and kill each of us. This truth is why there is so much evil in this world.

Not if, but when we face battles in our lives, we must put on our full armor, the Word of God, His scripture, teaches us that when we do this, Satan flees. When we turn to God and ask for his protection against attacks from those who are evil in their ways, those who attempt to lie, deceive, mock, destroy, judge, condemn and persecute us, it is God’s promise that helps us overcome this evil in our lives. When we say “Let’s see what God says about this . . . watch Satan run away.” God will ultimately have his way with evildoers.

Ephesians 6:13-17 tells us to – Take up the full armor of God, so that you will be able to resist in the evil day, and having done everything, to stand firm . . . and take . . . the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God.

The Sword of the Spirit, God’s word, is a military metaphor to help us understand that Christian believers are up against Satan and his followers in daily battles that can only be overcome by the sword, our armor. We must always refer to the Word of God to discern our actions, thoughts and attitudes that are contrary to God’s way. We must use the Sword of the Spirit to demolish any evil strongholds in our lives. This is the Christian battle, and this is how we need to use scripture as our defensive weapon, our armor.

The armor of God is the gospel of peace, is our shield of faith. As Paul tells us in 2 Corinthians 10:3-5 – For though we live in the world, we do not wage war as the world does.  The weapons we fight with are not the weapons of the world. On the contrary, they have divine power to demolish strongholds. We demolish arguments and every pretension that sets itself up against the knowledge of God, and we take captive every thought to make it obedient to Christ.

The Sword of the Spirit shows us in the days Jesus Christ came in the flesh, that the enemy of every Christian believer was and still is Satan, as he’s relentlessly trying to separate us from God, the master, the creator of Heaven and earth. In scripture Peter warns us –

Be alert and of sober mind. Your enemy the devil prowls around like a roaring lion looking for someone to devour. Resist him, standing firm in the faith, because you know that the family of believers throughout the world is undergoing the same kind of sufferings – 1 Peter 5:8-9.

Why is the Sword of the Spirit your greatest defensive and offensive weapon against evil? Because God’s word can and does penetrate darkness, changes hardened hearts and protects us against those who choose to engage in evil thoughts and acts. The Sword of the Spirit also helps us discern the difference between good and evil. The word of God is living and active and sharper than any two-edged sword, and piercing as far as the division of soul and spirit, of both joints and marrow, and able to judge the thoughts and intentions of the heart – Hebrews 4:12.

Do you desire to become better informed, better prepared for the battles and more knowledgeable in God’s word? Or maybe you consider yourself already skilled and trained in using the Sword of the Spirit as your offensive armor. Either way, see what scripture tells us once we’ve chosen to put on our armor, and choose to live by the Sword of the Spirit – I have kept my feet from every evil path, so that I might obey your word.  I have not departed from your laws, for you yourself have taught me. How sweet are your words to my taste, sweeter than honey to my mouth! I gain understanding from your precepts; therefore, I hate every wrong path – Psalm 119:101-104.

Blessings until next week,

Debra Pauli
Unstoppable Believer

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Graceful Perseverance: Thanksgiving in the Holy Word – 11/18

thanksgiving2Welcome to this week’s blog, a holiday week. It seems appropriate to call attention to the English word “Thanksgiving,” the French translation “Merci de donner,” the Italian translation “Grazie dare,” and the Spanish translation “Gracias que dan.”  Such a beautiful word is wonderful to practice out loud with family and friends this holiday season.

I thought it would also be very interesting and enlightening to identify the word “Thanksgiving” in the Holy word (NIV), a universal book shared by many cultures and nations. The first scripture that jumped out at me was Psalm 100:4 – Enter his gates with thanksgiving and his courts with praise; give thanks to him and praise his name.

thanksgiving3Exactly. Give Him thanks and praise and not just one time a year, but daily. Pour out your thanks to the one who created you, the one who protects you and watches over you, the one who will never leave you or forsake you.

Holy Bible and Rosary BeadsScripture tells us the true meaning of Thanksgiving focuses on the relationship between God and man. Thanksgiving begins with acknowledging God as faithful and earnestly giving Him thanks, in advance, for His abundant blessings. Philippians 4:6 speaks of prayer and petition – Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God.

Everything the Holy word instructs is around the act of giving thanks, the grateful acknowledgement of benefits or favors, especially to God. Thanksgiving is an expression of thanks, to our Heavenly Father.

Yes, Thanksgiving is a universal, public celebration in acknowledgement of divine favor or kindness. Thanksgiving is a day set apart for giving thanks to God: above all that He has blessed us. He calls us to glorify His name and give thanks that we have a Heavenly Father watching over us.Group of People Holding Cross and Praying in Back Lit

Scripture clearly defines Thanksgiving as a time to praise God. It’s a reflection of adoration, sacrifice, praise and offerings. Thanksgiving is an act of worship, a grateful prayer to God. Psalm 42:4 says “These things I remember as I pour out my soul; how I used to go with the multitude, leading the procession to the house of God, with shouts of joy and thanksgiving among the festive throng.”

According to scripture, long before the colonists celebrated their successes, Nehemiah assembled two great choirs to give thanks for God’s faithfulness in rebuilding the wall. According to Nehemiah 12:27 – “ . . . The Levites were sought out from where they lived and were brought to Jerusalem to celebrate joyfully and (to give) dedication with songs of thanksgiving and with the music of cymbals, harps, and lyres.”

I believe Thanksgiving should be an “attitude of the heart” that reinforces our intimate relationship with God.

Psalm 50:23

Psalm 92

thanksgiving1Happy Thanksgiving, and may the Lord bless you and keep you, may His face shine upon you and give you peace. May you spend the day with family and friends reinforcing the multiple blessings we receive from our Heavenly Father, as well as carrying out persistent prayer and petition throughout the season.

Blessings until next week,

Debra Pauli
Unstoppable Believer

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Graceful Perseverance: The Power of Christian Love

Welcome to this week’s blog. What legacy do you want to be remembered for? What do you want to pass down to your sons and daughters and their offspring long after you have returned home, your eternal resting place?

I want to leave Christian Love behind for those who knew me and remember me by the love I demonstrated throughout my life. They will know me and remember me by the way I loved my fellow man. Some days this idea feels like a tall order to fill, and can often feel overwhelming, but surely, I know I am not alone in this endeavor, for the Lord is with me. Nothing in this world gives me greater joy than to become more and more like Jesus every day and to be remembered by my acts of Christian love.

First John tells us that if we are truly Christians who have accepted Christ, and genuinely trust Christ as our Savior, this evidence  will be manifested through our love for others. First John 3:14 tells us “We know that we have passed from death to life, because we love each other. Anyone who does not love remains in death.” And in 1 John 3:18 it tells us, “Dear children, let us not love with words or speech but with actions and in truth.”

How clearly do our actions say we really love others? The greatest act of love is giving oneself for others. How do we show Christian love to others? How do we lay down our lives for others? How do we serve others without expecting something in return? The old cliché is “I would lay down and die for you!” But in truth, it would be harder to live for them than to die for them.

Real love is not a feeling, it’s an action. It produces a selfless act of kindness towards another fellow man. This type of love, a biblical love, motivates us to put others’ desires before our own. This is a principle Jesus not only taught to his disciples, but also throughout scripture, and continues to demand from each of us today, even 2,000 years later.

With hometown conversations in the coffee shop, passers-by on the street corner, within my church fellowship family and within my family and friend circles, they will all know and remember me by my Christian love.

When I pray for and love others unconditionally, I display a steadfast faith in Christ that is noticeable by all. I can call myself a child of God when I extend myself to others in love. Ephesians 4:2With all humility and gentleness, with patience, bearing with one another in love.

There are three essential commands from Jesus:

  1. Believe in Christ
  2. Love thy brothers and sisters
  3. Live moral and upright lives

There are also four other moral principles I choose to live by: prayer, acquiring the understanding of biblical reasons for hope, becoming the salt and the light for Jesus and sharing the gospel with others.

What does Jesus say in scripture about Christian love?

As the Father has loved me, so have I loved you. Abide in my love.  If you keep my commandments, you will abide in my love, just as I have kept my Father’s commandments and abide in his love.

These things I have spoken to you, that my joy may be in you, and that your joy may be full. This is my commandment, that you love one another as I have loved you.

Greater love has no one than this, that someone lay down his life for his friends. You are my friends if you do what I command you. No longer do I call you servants, for the servant does not know what his master is doing; but I have called you friends, for all that I have heard from my Father I have made known to you.

You did not choose me, but I chose you and appointed you that you should go and bear fruit and that your fruit should abide, so that whatever you ask the Father in my name, he may give it to you. These things I command you, so that you will love one another. – John 15:9-17.

Blessings until next week,

Debra Pauli
Unstoppable Believer

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Graceful Perseverance: A Cross at the Side of the Road

Welcome back everyone to this week’s blog. Yesterday, 4/21, was my 3rd son’s birthday. He would have been 34 this year, but has been celebrating his birthday in Heaven since 2005. Happy Birthday Bryce Lee. Mamma loves you son!

This week seemed appropriate to write about the cross at the side of the road, where a mother loses her son long before his time. Yes, for those of you who know me on an personal level, July 21, 2015 will be the 13th anniversary of Bryce Lee return to home.

Thirteen years have passed since I had written my third book in the memory of Bryce to help grieving parents and families cope with the many levels of pain that death’s suffering leaves behind.

Why we Cry for a Soul set Free” is the story of how I dealt with the death of my third child, one of the most traumatic experiences a parent can go through. Bryce Lee Haugen was the third of my four sons and the bravest human being I’ve ever known. Bryce was my special child; he had been diagnosed with epilepsy and mild mental retardation at a very young age. With his limitations, his life was a challenging one, but despite the treatment he sometimes received from those who couldn’t accept or understand him, he always looked at life in a positive way and loved people unconditionally.

Aside from the book I wrote in 2005, there has been tremendous healing and transformation that has taken place in our family since that day. In this blog I am not going to write about the powerful message you get from my book because each of you can read the book and gain your own perspective. But what I did want to emphasize in this week’s blog is the common practice of “no helmet” while riding four wheelers, motorcycles, dirt bikes, scooters, mopeds, any motorized vehicle and the important message I have for all of you, whether you are the driver or the passenger in any of these situations. Truthfully, Bryce was not wearing a helmet when riding his four wheeler, but if he had, I know without a doubt that he would still be with us today.

In this world there is such a heavy emphasis on “status symbols”. What I mean by this is just this, we as humans consciously believe that the home we live in, what we drive, our job title, not the richness of our soul, but the richness of our bank account, the clothes we wear and who are social circle happens to be are all “status symbols” that we use to compare ourselves to others, to judge each other, and what we see as “important stuff” rather than “unimportant stuff”. Actually because we get so fixated on the status symbols of this world our souls shrink and life becomes this big masquerade, and all of us us are simply “actors on stage” worrying about what our outside looks like, without concentrating on fixing the inside.

I’ve seen this too many times…if not most of the time. Bikers on Harly’s who are pimped out in leather chaps, biker’s gear that makes them look “cool” on their bikes – and every time it’s without a helmet. Helmets don’t fit into the dress code when riding a motorcycle because helmets don’t make us look cool on our bike…am I wrong? This is a prime example of “status symbols” where we worry more about what we look like on the outside, rather than what we look like on the inside. And as a result of concentrating only on our outward appearance, we jeopardize our physical safety so we look good and impress others. And then when a tragic accidents occur such as Bryce’s or on a motorcycle due to the fact that they weren’t wearing helmets, everybody scratches their heads in awe and wonders how in the world something like this could happen.

Yes, my son was in a tragic four wheeler accident, along with two other vehicles on a major highway without a wearing a helmet. And the crazy part of that is everyone walked away without a scratch except for Bryce. Did he own a helmet? Yes, years prior to his accident I bought him one and insisted that he wear it. Did he wear it consistently when he rode his four wheeler? No. And the reason was because he was teased and made fun of by others when he did put it on. So again, my son was vulnerable to what society considers important – status symbols and not looking like a dork.

As a result of falling victim to the weight of the world, my son’s life ended before his time. He died twelve hours later at St. Mary’s Hospital in Rochester, Minnesota from a very horrific highway accident due to the simple fact that he was not wearing his helmet.

When the phone rang that July evening to tell me my twenty-one year old son was fighting for his life, my heart was shattered into a million pieces within seconds. While the rest of the world was sleeping peacefully, Bryce was fighting for his life. Despite twelve hours of intense medical attention by a staff at the Mayo Clinic and St. Mary’s Hospital professionals, Bryce died from “cerebral edema with herniation” on July 21, 2005 at 6:30 p.m., a time that will be forever instilled in the memories of my family. We had lost a son, a brother, a loved one.

If you get nothing else out of my blog this week…please, I pray that all of you will take the initiative and enforce a helmet anytime you have the influence or authority with family and friends and even strangers…Trust me, you do not want to visit a cross on the side of a road or a cemetery in order to express your love to someone who has lost their life before their time. After the tragic that my family had endured, would you please listen to my words and the pain of my heart to please put on the helmets before riding…it’s a choice that each of us has, and it will not only preserve lives, but will allow loved ones to remain here on earth without being forced to leave before their time.

Blessings until next week,

Debra M. Pauli
Unstoppable Believer

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Graceful Perseverance: Where is God?

Welcome back to my Sunday blogs everyone! Cup of coffeeTo date, there are 289,311 followers of my faith based blogs. How exciting leading into the second quarter of 2018 and inspiring this many people around the world.

It is my hope that everyone had a very blessed Easter season! It’s mid-April, a new season the Lord has blessed upon each of us. How awesome that He has given us another year to do His work. What is it that the Lord has put upon your heart to do for His glory this year? How has your relationship grown with the Lord, our Savior, so far this year? How will you praise Him? Will you let Him into your life for the first time or continue to grow your relationship with Him? Will you become a light in this jaded world? These are my words of encouragement for you today.

Here’s how the Lord wrapped up in the past year of my life. As a self-publishing author and speaker since 2003, I have published my 6th book, a faith based book you can curl up with in your favorite chair in front of the fireplace, with lit candles all around you to add to the ambiance to set the mood to read a powerful testimony of conviction of Where is God? a faith and hope based book of encouragement.January blog 2016

In this book I have expressed my innermost feelings about various personal issues that have permeated my life. I have experienced many traumas that most people have never experienced and perhaps, may never in their lifetime.  Yet, with my tragedies behind me, I have come to be a blessed child in Christ Jesus.  I confess to you today, I stand at the foot of the cross because He is my light, my strength, my spirit and where hope is found even in the darkest and stormiest corners of my life. I turn to the cross to calm my fears and my contention. The power of the cross fills the depths of me with peace and brings me comfort because it is when I stand at the foot of the cross I find myself enriched by the love of Christ. The power of the cross is His gift of love and righteousness.IMG_20150822_192923804

There are six parts to this book, each filled with a power message. Each page is filled with inspiration for all of us, followed by chapter scripture relative to each section of the book. In each chapter, I reveal a message from my soul all of us need to embrace. I chose not to walk the path of destruction. I love Christ very deeply and as a result wish to share my deep-rooted relationship with all of you. I know all too well that God is alive, and I am inspiring each of us to turn to Him, to trust Him, and to follow His plan for our lives. I inspire you to vehemently turn away from your own understanding and probably false perceptions and your worldly biased opinions of our secular society and turn to the Lord today.

Until next week’s blog, go to www.debrapauli.com to see my other faith based books or email me at debra@debrapauli.com as we are all in this thing called life together. Each week and with each book, it is my intent to encourage each of you, pray for all and continue to change lives one book at a time.

My prayer for you – May God bless you and keep you. May His face shine upon you and give you grace. May you go about your day and everything you do, you do in the name of our Lord and Savior, Amen.

Other books published by Debra Pauli: www.debrapauli.com

  1. Where is God?, a testimony of conviction (2015)
  2. Once Upon a Man, frog or prince (2013)
  3. Saving 3 Leaves on a Tree, me, myself and I (published TBD) (2006)
  4. Why We Cry for a Soul Set Free, in loving memory of Bryce Lee (2005)
  5. “…and then there was LIGHT”, my spiritual cleansing (2nd Edition) (2004)
  6. A Survivor’s Closet, how my memories as a little girl became the diary of one of the most horrific, severe child abuse stories in Missouri history (2003)

Debra’s self-publishing timeline: 2015, 2013, 2006, 2005, 2004, 2003

5books 2016

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Graceful Perseverance: Protecting Your Craft

Welcome back, everyone! This week let’s chat about our unique craft and how we protect these crafts or gifts once recognized.Cup of coffee

What one craft or gift can you list that you feel you are good at doing? If you struggle answering this question, it would help for you to start a list of those gifts you thoroughly enjoy. If given the choice, would you walk away from your day job to pursue this craft at full speed? What crafts or “God-given gifts,” do you perform with little or no effort because it feels so natural and easy for you.  Again, start your list now because you will need to refer back to this list when we have completed this exercise.

progettoLet’s dive deeper into the true definition of what it means to protect our craft. I believe each and every one of us is the recipient of God-given gifts that were intentionally and deliberately designed and planted in our DNA makeup long before we were born.

O Lord, you have searched me and you know me. You know when I sit and when I rise; you perceive my thoughts from afar. You discern my going out and my lying down; you are familiar with all my ways. Before a word is on my tongue you know it completely, O Lord. – Psalm 139:1-4.

Today we may recognize these gifts as a bigger part of our lives because they were always a part of the bigger plan for our lives. Do you realize our creator knows the count of every hair on our head? He knows what will fall from our lips before we speak. He knows our every thought.Little girl with red guitar, sitting He knows the desires of our hearts. All pain and suffering goes through His hands before He allows us to feel pain and suffering. He understands better than we do why we struggle and trip on hindrances every day. He understands our earthly struggles to survive in this broken world. He knows our deepest recesses. He understands the complexity of each of us because He uniquely designed each of us for His purpose, for a bigger plan. But the wonderful thing about His knowing is there are no details of our lives that are hidden from Him. He truly sees us through the eyes of grace.

Painters brushesHe designed us to be far better than we believe we could ever be. Because He’s the one who created each of us, He knows better than we do what our full capabilities entail. We are the ones with blinders on. We are the ones who lack trust in His design. We are the ones who lack trust in our ultimate purpose while we are here. But it is He who truly knows our craft, because He’s the one that planted these seeds deep into our being with the intent that we would water and care for these seeds, and watch them grow into something beautiful that brings Him glory. We are the ones who fail to follow Him and look to His guidance in fulfilling His ultimate plan for our lives.

Fashion designer studioI truly know without any doubt why He created me. He created me for a very specific purpose that no other soul walking this earth can fulfill but me. The same applies to you, your family, friends, peers, constituents, leaders, etc. He’s blown His breath of wind, fire and light into every living creature for us to pursue His plan for each of us. So how do we recognize the gifts or crafts He’s individually assigned to each of us? And how do we master these crafts?Fashion design

Trust Him daily, even hourly. Learn to converse with Him. He’s your Heavenly Father who is already standing by your side.

O Lord Almighty, blessed is the man who trusts in you. – Psalm 84:12

He will speak to you from the depths of your being. Be still and quiet and remove the external noise. Shut down the chatter in your head. Block out the worldly distractions. Allow the stillness of silence to grab you so tightly that all you can hear is the soft whisper of His voice. It is in this moment when He will reveal your crafts to you. These are the gifts you need to protect above anything else you do in your life. Remember, your God-given gifts are intended for you to pursue, master and protect for His righteousness. Your gifts will help others.Making bracelet of colorful beads Your gifts will reach out to others and give them something they need at the perfect moment in their lives, just when they needed it most. You will inspire, motivate, enlighten and change the lives of millions when you focus on your gift. You protect your gifts by keeping your eyes looking upward and trusting your council knows what He’s doing above all else.

How’s your list of gifts shaping up? Pin it up on your vision board. Allow quiet time in your life so your Father can council you and steer you toward pursuing your crafts.

Book shaped word cloud

Here’s my list of “God-given gifts”: daughter, mother, wife, grandmother, lover, friend, peer, constituent, leader, inspirational woman, mentor, life coach, author/writer, motivational speaker, spiritual teacher, martyr, disciple, inspired God girl every day and all for His glory.

God Bless,
Debra Pauli
Unstoppable Believer

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Graceful Perseverance: The Power of the Cross!

Welcome back everyone! This was Holy Week, when all things are made new and He has risen. three crosses at sunsetWe’ve grown to know and love this seasonal Friday as “Good Friday” or as originally called “God’s Friday” by many Christians. Good Friday is also known as the dawn of the darkest day on earth, a dark and excruciating day on Mount Calvary.

The power of the cross represents Christ absorbing the wrath of our sin. With a crown of thorns piercing His head and blood stained brows, Drops of BloodHe was tried, falsely convicted as a criminal, dressed in rags, beaten and then nailed to a wooden cross because of our sins, bitter contemplation and actions.

Pontius Pilate said to Jesus, “Do You not know that I have power to crucify You, and power to release You?”

Jesus answered, “You could have no power at all against Me unless it had been given you from above. Therefore the one who delivered Me to you has the greater sin.”

Jesus was slain by the ones He came to save. For that reason we must stand at the foot of the cross knowing we stand in forgiveness. Many of us see and feel the depths of His pain painted across Jesus’ face, bearing the weight of our sinful nature. He cried out “Father, into your hands I commend my Spirit,” and then He died on a wooden cross. The dead are raised to life, therefore Jesus spoke into the wind: “It is Finished.” All the earth would hear the cry of this victory through a massive earthquake and an empty tomb three days later.genesis cross

As daylight vanished, the religious leaders falsely accused Jesus and demanded He be put to death by sundown. The ground beneath them quaked as Jesus spoke I am, and you will see me, the Son of Man, sitting at God’s right hand and coming back on the clouds of Heaven.” When asked if He was the King of the Jews, Jesus replied, “My kingdom is not of this world. If it were, my followers would have fought to prevent my arrest by the Jewish leaders. But my kingdom is from another place.” It is written in His wounds and suffering that we have been made free. The Son of God sacrificed His life so that our lives would be ours to live and conquered through His self-sacrificing love.

ilustracion con cruz y fieles. Iglesia Cristiana.The power of the cross is the cornerstone of solid ground because the Son of God, who took on flesh for us, died so that we would have an everlasting life with our Heavenly Father.

I stand at the foot of the cross because He is my light, my strength, my spirit and where hope is found even in the darkest and stormiest corners of my life. I turn to the cross to calm my fears and my contention. The power of the cross fills the depths of me with peace and brings me comfort because it is when I stand at the foot of the cross I find myself enriched by the love of Christ.

The power of the cross is His gift of love and righteousness. The body of Jesus laid in the ground but on the third day the tomb was found empty.Prayer. On that glorioius day, He had risen and returned to the clouds of Heaven to be with His Father.

God’s wrath against sinners was subsequently satisfied for every sin of man was forgiven. Sin would no longer have a grip on God’s children. No power in Hell, no guilt or shame, no scheme of man would have a grip on God’s children. Nothing can pluck God’s children from His hand. We are Christ, heaven and hellHis and He is ours until He calls us home. It is through the precious blood of Jesus that we stand in the power of Christ in victory.

God Bless all in this joyous season,

 

Debra M. Pauli
Unstoppable Believer

NIV – Matthew 26:53-54, Mark 10:33-34, John 12:24-28, 18:11, 19:10-11

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