Superabundantly

shutterstock_136524851Now to Him who, by the power that is at work within us, is able to [carry out His purpose [and] do SUPERABUNDANTLY, far over and above all that we [dare] ask or think [infinitely BEYOND our highest prayers, desires, thoughts, hopes or dreams]. Ephesians 3:20 AMP

This verse has become my favorite verse of all times in the bible!! I see it coming true in so many ways and more to come! Beyond the beyond…My favorite verse has been escalating with anticipation and expectation! For more! Beyond what we can see. Having faith to believe and see God carry out His purpose through you and me. Does that get you excited? It does me too!

Being the word girl that I am, I am always compelled to get a definition and search thesaurus for more depth of the meaning of words. I looked up superabundant and this is what it says: Abundant to excess. Exceedingly or abundant. More than sufficient. Overly abundant. Bountiful. Extravagant. Lavish. Lush. No end. Open handed. Overflowing. Plentiful. Prolific. Superfluous.

Something inside begins stirring and inspires me to dream, ask, and pray for more! Beyond what we can see.

I just went to get our mail from the mailbox a little bit ago, and the first word that I see is an advertisement to a large store that seriously has more than you could ever need, want or ask for in one place! A girl going into register for a bridal showers dream! Amazing gadgets and gizmos of all sorts and kinds… Yep, that’s right! Bed Bath & BEYOND!

So this mailer catches my eyes instantly with the words BEYOND in bold, bright, yellow letters. I smiled and laughed and said God you are so clever! You know that you are preparing my heart for this post and you have been graciously sharing your heart with me for more of you! And then you send this mailer to remind me even more!

So I have been thinking about you. Yes you. As you are reading this post you may be miles and miles away from me. I may not be able to reach out and give you a big sweet embrace. But my words can reach out to you. There is a stirring in my heart for you. To ask God for more. Be brave. Dare to ask, think and go superabundantly in your requests. If I had a big jar that you could place your request in, what would you ask God for? Put some thought into it. Something maybe you have been dreaming of for a long time? Praying for? Wishing for? Hoping for something?

If you could put that something into words… what would that be? I am going to even take it a step further and ask you to write out your requests and give them to God. What is something BEYOND your reach that it can only come through Gods open hands. New doors are ready to swing open. Gates are going to swing wide. Hearts are being stirred to ask, dream, imagine far above and beyond!

I am praying and believing for you and the requests that you are making! Looking forward to the God winks He will send your way. You know what I mean. Those surprises that come your way and you know only God could orchestrate something like that!

Maybe a relationship restored. A healing you have been believing for. A sweet encounter that only God could have set up just for you. A delivery in some way that is out of the ordinary. Something extraordinary. A hearts desire that is waiting to be fulfilled. Winks can come in so many ways. I am asking Him to send you God Winks of all kinds!

May He do Superabundantly ABOVE and BEYOND in your life! Believing for an Ephesians 3:20 life for you and the ones you love. In your children, family, friends, church family… it stretches endlessly and infinitely beyond what we can see. God loves to work behind the scenes. In those moments you think that nothing may be happening. You have been waiting and waiting for your prayers to be answered and you think He may not hear you. Oh sweet child, He does! He Hears you and loves to answer you in His timing! There is beauty in the waiting. When the right time comes and your long-awaited prayers, dreams and hopes are fulfilled one by one… you can thank Him for answering…& then just begin to ask for more and more BEYOND!!

Written by Salina Duffy

A Peanut for Christmas?

shutterstock_92219029We were going to be pregnant together, my oldest sister and I. I was due September 4th and she September 6th. This was particularly exciting given I’d had a miscarriage the month before and she had two before considering fertility treatments. For my sister and her husband there was another aspect of importance. My brother-in-law, who had been adopted at birth, would finally have one blood relative—something he thought he really wanted.

Imagine the blow when my sister miscarried—again. She and her husband now needed to decide what to do next, and I felt the guilt of carrying my child to term “without her.” The fantasy I’d had of calling her every day to share our experiences—our sonogram visits, the first kicks felt—fell away like sand through my fingers. I also knew the birth of my child around her uncompleted due date would be, for her, a poignant moment of grief.

Then God lay on her heart to adopt. Because of her husband’s desire for a blood relative, this idea had previously been pushed aside. But God had other plans for him.

My sister researched some organizations and settled on the idea of an open adoption. She and her husband attended an information session to learn more. They sat through stories from adoptive parents about their experiences. They listened to them recount the same fears and insecurities my sister and her husband had about adoption. They also had a chance to experience the unfathomable love these parents had for their children.

This touched my brother-in-law most deeply. You see, he’d grown up in a family where one sister had been adopted, like him, and the other had not. You could imagine the lingering questions he might have had about his parent’s love. But now, he heard the depths of emotion these people had for the children “not of their blood,” allowing for a better understanding of his parents’ love for him.

God is amazing, isn’t He?!

They decided to adopt then and there. And God continued to show Himself as only He can. Within months, they were chosen by a birth mother whose first name also happened to be the same as what they’d planned to name their child. She also loved animals—which further endeared her to my sister—and her due date was the same as one of my sister’s miscarried pregnancies. Their only concern came with the knowledge that this young woman had epilepsy which required her to be on heavy medication. However, she chose to reduce the amount she normally took in order to lower any potential impact it might have on the baby she would not raise.

That September my son was born. My sister and her husband came to “meet” him and held him, not with the knowledge of what they would NOT have, but an expectancy of what was to come. I mean it. I have the pictures. You can see it in their eyes! It was exciting for us all.

Then the birth mother went into very premature labor. My sister and her husband, whose goal it had been to be there for the birth, flew out to Texas just in case. Doctors were able to delay the birth, which was good because the baby’s lungs were not yet completely formed, but there was no guarantee for how long. So my sister stayed.

You may not think it a big deal my sister stayed in Texas for a month by herself, but considering she’d suffered from agoraphobia (a fear of public places) not too long before, it was. Somehow, God was working in the details and strengthening her every step of the way. My sister is now a mental health therapist herself.

My beautiful niece, who I like to call “cousin peanut” (cuz she was shaped like one back then), was born on Christmas Eve. A joyous holiday for my sister and her husband, but one the birth mother will not remember well, because she had spent most of that day either having a grand-mal seizure, recovering from the effects of it, or being run through neurological tests to assure her wellbeing. All this because she had chosen to reduce her medication so much. She had put her health at risk so this little “peanut” would have a better chance.

No one can say my niece is not loved! She was loved first by the woman who risked much (in the age of easy access to abortion) and gave her up so she could have a better life. She was loved by the parents who’d raise her every day. And she is loved by her extended family (us) who couldn’t wait to meet her.

My sister and her husband later considered trying to grow their family some more, but they chose not to. Why? Because they couldn’t fathom loving another child, biological or not, as much as they did the “peanut” God gave them that Christmas.

Written by Connie Almony

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Connie’s experience includes working as a Christian Counselor in Columbia, Maryland. Though she no longer counsels, she continues to work with wonderful people in this field. She has been married almost twenty years and has two beautiful children who inspire her to become all she can be.

Connie hosts the blog Living the Body of Christ created to encourage readers to use the gifts God gave them. She also writes for InfiniteCharacters.com, a group blog dedicated to guide writers in their pursuit of a dream, and readers in their pursuit of a good read.