Challenges Won't Stop Me

Melony Brown

Challenges. Uggh. Life is full of challenges. How do you navigate those unexpected turns in your path? You could crumble and believe life isn't fair, giving that challenge permission to defeat you. But that's not you who you are. Neither are the courageous women who our host, Melony Brown, interviews. These women chose to fight to overcome life's tough challenges. They share their stories, as well as the strategies and habits that strengthened them and helped them maintain a 'challenges won't stop me' mindset.Throughout the season, Melony publishes video solocasts to share messages and resources to strengthen you for your current challenges and those that are right around the corner. Discover what kind of journey navigator you are when life's tough challenges intersect your path. Take the quiz at journeyonquiz.comInterested in sharing your overcomer story? Email me at melony@melonybrown.comMy book "Challenges Won't Stop Me: An Interactive Survival Guide for Overcoming & Thriving" is available on Amazon. read less
Religion & SpiritualityReligion & Spirituality

Episodes

102: I'm Not in Control. God Is. a mindset interview with Jessica Roberts
May 10 2024
102: I'm Not in Control. God Is. a mindset interview with Jessica Roberts
Jessica Roberts shared her story of being wrongly accused of drug conspiracy and sentenced to serve 27 months in prison in episode 101. If you haven’t listened to it yet, it would be helpful as Jessica refers to her story several times throughout this interview. While in prison, Jessica realized she was not in control. Her story had many similarities to Job’s story in the Bible. It was clear that God is in control.  Throughout the stories Jessica shares, you’ll hear her wisdom, humor, determination, passion, and faith. Choosing to return to prisons to train and encourage male and female prisoners strategies for successful re-entry into society is a statement about God’s powerful work in her. Notable quotes from this episode with Jessica Roberts: ·         “As long as you have Him on the inside, it reflects on the outside. And you will have the mindset of overcoming, conquering, determination, and just a pressing forward in spite of your circumstances.”·         “You are judged by the company that you keep. Be mindful. Be mindful of the company that you keep and separate because unfair things do happen in life.”·         “God is Almighty. The things He can do is limitless . . . We as human beings are limited, but God is not limited.” Bible verses: ·         Job 42:12 “And the Lord blessed the latter part of Job’s life more than the former part.”·         Genesis 50:20 "You intended to harm me, but God intended it for good to accomplish what is now being done, the saving of many lives."·         Romans 8:28 “You intended to harm me, but God intended it for good to accomplish what is not being done – the saving of many lives.”  Connect with Jessica Roberts:Her website: https://www.jessicanroberts.comOn Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/jessica.roberts.3591On Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/jessicanicole8726Send me a COMMENT or QUESTION!
101: Not Built to Break: being wrongly accused & incarcerated didn't stop her with Jessica Roberts
May 8 2024
101: Not Built to Break: being wrongly accused & incarcerated didn't stop her with Jessica Roberts
When you hear a story about someone in prison claiming to be not guilty, do you ever wonder what that would be like if it happened to you? I know not all who claim to be not guilty are, but Jessica Roberts was wrongly accused AND given a 27-month prison sentence. Was she upset? Yes. Did she feel wronged? Yes.  She could have fallen into negativity and anger, but she chose a different response. In today’s interview, Jessica Roberts explains, "My attitude was to remain as positive as possible and play the cards we were being dealt. I was determined not to break. I was not built to break." Jessica is the author of Triumphant! One Woman’s Journey from Prison to Purpose. She describes herself as a re-entry activist with a passion to help promote smooth re-entry into civilian life for men and women who are soon to complete their prison sentence. Jessica describes her childhood and young adult years as ‘being a good girl.’ She had no desire or intention to become ‘a bad girl,’ but being at the wrong place at the wrong time with the wrong people led to her being charged with the crime of drug conspiracy.  As difficult as prison was, God met Jessica there and changed her life. She shares about how reading the book of Job while in prison impacted her. Instead of never going near a prison ever again, Jessica is passionate about following God’s call to minister to male and female inmates, pointing them to Jesus and offering them hope. Notable quotes from this episode with Jessica Roberts: ·         “That’s when the spiritual side took over because I was raised in the church, but I didn’t have a personal relationship with God . . . when I became incarcerated and when my mother and father and no one could help me, God was taking the blinders off little by little. I began to see things in the different light, from a different perspective. Job lost everything, but God would not let the devil take his life. He was tested and tried, but He would not let him take his life. It resonated with me really, really deep.”·         “In the shower, I just would cry out to Him – ‘I have to go through this. I must go through this. Be with me. Never leave my side.’ And so, I found comfort in that and that’s where that strength came from. I’m in prison physically, but not mentally or spiritually.” Bible verse: ·         1 Corinthians 15:33 “Do not be misled. Bad company corrupts good character.” Connect with Jessica Roberts:Her website: https://jessicanroberts.comOn Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/jessica.roberts.3591On Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/jessicanicole8726Send me a COMMENT or QUESTION!
100: God Is Bigger Than the Worst Kind of Evil: Columbine 25th Anniversary with Kacey Johnson
Apr 20 2024
100: God Is Bigger Than the Worst Kind of Evil: Columbine 25th Anniversary with Kacey Johnson
Where were you when the news hit about President Kennedy's assassination (November 22, 1963)? When the news hit about MLK Jr's assassination (April 4, 1968)? When the news hit about planes hitting the Twin Towers in New York (September 11, 2001)? Where were you when the news hit about the Columbine school shooting in Littleton, Colorado (April 20, 1999)? I remember it clearly. I was teaching at Garrett Middle School. It's hard to believe the deadliest school shooting occurred twenty-five years ago. The lives of twelve students and one teacher were taken that day. Twenty-one others were wounded, including Kacey Ruegsegger Johnson.  In this interview, Kacey shares her story of being shot in the library, her recovery, and how those challenges prepared her for the challenges she would face in the following years.  Kacey’s daughter, Logan, was diagnosed with aniridia, or the absence of irises in her eyes. She knew what she’d learned would help her parent a child with disabilities. She said, “Only God could have known that the injuries I sustained at Columbine would turn into a huge blessing with regard to my parenting journey.”Kacey is on the Board of Directors for the Limb Preservation Society. Notable quotes from this episode with Kacey Johnson:  ·         "In that most horrific moment of my life also came the proof that I love a living God and that He's bigger than the absolute worst kind of evil that was right in my face. He's bigger than that. It gives me so much to live for."·         “I’d become comfortable in the trauma I knew and how I was just surviving it. I didn’t know how to get out of the surviving and into the thriving. And I wanted to be thriving as a parent and not just surviving.”·         “God has ultimately transformed the shotgun slug that tore through me into seeds that have grown to produce very good fruit in my life. The fiery missile of hate that burned through my body has not had the pleasure of destroying me, and what was ultimately meant for evil will continue to be choked out by all the beautiful good that is still to come.”Bible verses: ·         Romans 8:2 “For the law of the Spirit of life has set you free from the law of sin and death.”·         Romans 8:28 “And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him.” Connect with Kacey Ruegsegger Johnson:Her website: https://www.kaceyjohnsonspeaker.comOn Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/KaceyRuegseggerJohnsonOn Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/kaceyjohnsonspeaker Send me a COMMENT or QUESTION!
99: Get Real to Heal: a mindset interview with Grace English
Apr 5 2024
99: Get Real to Heal: a mindset interview with Grace English
Dr. Grace English joins me again to discuss the mindset of getting real to heal. She is a speaker and the director of the Deep in the Heart Conference, which is held in Texas every spring. Didn’t catch her story interview in episode 98? She refers to it several times, so I would encourage you to listen to it before you listen to this episode.When she found herself getting extremely anger with her two-year-old daughter, Grace began to realize she’d stuffed her pain. She shared, “Not until I really got real and had true confession and repentance over my sin of abortion and acknowledging the humanity of my baby did God free me from that guilt and shame.”Grace knows getting real to heal is hard, but she believes it’s the way for God to heal your heart.Notable quotes from this episode with Grace English:·         “I think we have many idols in our life. He’s a jealous God, and He doesn’t want to be put second on the back burner. When we think other things in life are more important than Him, then that’s when we get into trouble.”·         “I have had to just get really real with the Lord. God, this really sucks. And He’s like, ‘I know it does, but I’m writing your story and there is going to be purpose from this whole journey.”·         “The Lord can’t use that pain and that loss to minister and speak to you unless it rises up to the surface.”Scripture references:·         Luke 4:18-19·         Romans 8:1·         Galatians 5:22-23·         Nehemiah 8:10·         John 13:7·         Philippians 4:7Connect with Grace English:On Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/grace.s.englishOn Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/gracecenglishAbout Deep in the Heart: https://deepintheheartministries.comSend me a COMMENT or QUESTION!
98: Speaking the Secret Breaks Its Power: overcoming emotional infidelity with Grace English
Apr 3 2024
98: Speaking the Secret Breaks Its Power: overcoming emotional infidelity with Grace English
We are discussing emotional infidelity on the show today. It’s a topic no other guest has covered. During my interview with Dr. Grace English, she shared the following statistic from Shannon Ethridge’s book, Every Woman’s Battle: “More than 90% of women have had emotional thoughts of another man that’s not their spouse.” Grace explained that she has struggled with emotional infidelity for many years. Dr. Grace English is a speaker and the director of the Deep in the Heart Conference, which is held in Texas every spring. In Ethridge’s book, Grace learned a love-relationship addiction stems from a childhood in which you weren’t nurtured. Not having a good relationship with her parents left her with a father-daughter wound and a mother-daughter wound. Sharing her struggles with two close friends led to her realizing that speaking her secret broke its power. In this episode, Grace explains why speaking our struggles is the first step in breaking the stronghold it has over us.Notable quotes from this episode with Grace English:·         “Me sharing it [emotional infidelity] with a friend actually opened that door where the power of the secret is broken when it’s spoken.”·         “He [God] can’t speak truth into my life if I refuse to acknowledge the truth of what is actually happening to me.”·         “Somebody needs to speak light into the darkness. Shine the light because so many times we want to hide in the dark.”Scripture references:·         Matthew 5:28 reads, “But I say to you that everyone who looks at a woman with lustful intent has already committed adultery with her in his heart.”·         1 Corinthians 10:13 reads, “No temptation has overtaken you that is not common to man. God is faithful, and he will not let you be tempted beyond your ability, but with the temptation he will also provide the way of escape, that you may be able to endure it.”Connect with Grace English:On Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/grace.s.englishOn Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/gracecenglishAbout Deep in the Heart: https://deepintheheartministries.comSend me a COMMENT or QUESTION!
97: Meanwhile: Meeting God in the Wait with Carol McLeod
Mar 6 2024
97: Meanwhile: Meeting God in the Wait with Carol McLeod
Are you in a meanwhile?My guest, Carol McLeod, describes a meanwhile as "the test of faith between a crisis and God's visible intervention."What do you do or say during the time between when a crisis intersects your life and when you see God's visible intervention?My guest is Carol McLeod. She's an overcomer, an award-winning author of sixteen books, host of the Significant Women podcast, international speaker, Craig's wife, and Marmie to her ten grandchildren.Carol and I discuss several snippets of her Bible study about the life of Joseph titled "Meanwhile: Meeting God in the Wait."I gained so much insight and understanding about those months or years in the meanwhiles - in the waiting - when I worked through Carol's powerful Bible study.Notable quotes from this episode with Carol McLeod:"Just as God has a plan for your life, so does the enemy. His ugly plan is that you, as a believer in Christ, will live out your earthly days in the dit of despair, in the pit of hopelessness, and the pit of unending depression. There is no potential for growth or nourishment there. The devil is unable to take eternal life from you, so he endeavors to take abundant life from you.""Joseph spoke generously because his life had been refined by human pain and he saw the unprecedented and miraculous plan of God unfold."Bible verses:2 Corinthians 5:7 "We live by faith, not by sight."Psalm 138:8 "God will accomplish what concerns me."John 16:22 "... no one can take away your joy ..."Genesis 50:20 "You intended to harm me, but God intended it for good to accomplish what is now being done, the saving of many nations."Jeremiah 29:11 "For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future."Carol's Bible study, Meanwhile: Meeting God in the Wait, is available on Amazon and wherever books are sold.Connect with Carol McLeod:On her website:  https://www.carolmcleodministries.comOn Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/carol.b.mcleodOn Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/carolmcleod_Get your ticket to the 20th annual women's conference: Overflowing: Living Abundantly in a Broken Culture HERE. Send me a COMMENT or QUESTION!
95: I Was Made for More: 7 year sobriety anniversary with Honey Duncan
Feb 20 2024
95: I Was Made for More: 7 year sobriety anniversary with Honey Duncan
My guest, Honey Duncan, is celebrating her 7th year of sobriety today – February 20, 2024. It took just one pain pill to cause her descent into addiction. While that pain pill helped with her back pain, it also helped numb her emotional pain. She liked how that pill seemingly solved her problems. She quotes actor Russell Brand in her interview. He said, “Drugs and alcohol are not my problem. Reality is my problem. Drugs and alcohol are the solutions to my problem.” Four overdoses scared her, but they were not her rock bottom. Jail was. While there, Honey decided, “I was made for more.” Jail was the needed ‘wakeup call’ to take recovery seriously. Today is a day of celebration. One in which Honey will give all the credit to God for breaking the stronghold of addiction. Notable quotes from this episode with Honey Duncan:·         “I don’t know at what point I gave up on being worthy. But I was like I’m never gonna be worthy, so I might as well be bad.”·         “There’s no running away from your pains. You have to confront them and overcome them.”·         “The only person my anger is hurting is myself.”Bible verses:·         Romans 8:28 “And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who[a] have been called according to his purpose.”·         Ephesians 6:12 NLT “For we are not fighting against flesh-and-blood enemies, but against evil rulers and authorities of the unseen world, against mighty powers in this dark world, and against evil spirits in the heavenly places.”Connect with Honey Duncan:On Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/honey.h.duncan On Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/honeyd/Send me a COMMENT or QUESTION!
94: The Grace of the Impossible: a mindset interview with Sara Cormany
Feb 9 2024
94: The Grace of the Impossible: a mindset interview with Sara Cormany
During the difficult days of Sara Cormany's journey, she developed a mindset of seeing God's grace in seemingly impossible situations.Sara believes God has done the impossible in her life. His grace allows her to understand the hard times were necessary in growing her faith and trust in Him. The years of living with a chronic illness, the neurological residuals she now has after a stroke, the pain and grief of miscarriages … Sara sees how God worked in and through those impossible challenges. She poured out her heart to God, which strengthened her relationship with Him. This grace of the impossible is a gift from God. This gift allows you to see all the ways God was with you, protected you, fought for you, and surrounded you with love during your difficult days.Notable quotes from this episode with Sara Cormany: ·         “The just hard … just every single day over the last year, and it is no mistake that God would be bringing this book out into the world now. Because I was able to look at His faithfulness and see how He worked through our impossible years ago. And I think that’s what He does. When we are able to look across the landscape of our lives and see His faithfulness through our hard things in the past, it gives us the hope to keep pressing on in the future.”·         “Without God … the grace of the impossible, or the impossible, is nothing but an obstacle. But with God, it’s just the beginning of what’s possible.”·         “When we can be vulnerable and we can be honest, that builds relationship. And knowing He is big enough to handle our hurts and our pain and our frustration, it keeps an ongoing conversation so that we can truly know His heart.”Scripture references:·         Matthew 17:20 “Truly I tell you, if you have faith as small as a mustard seed, you can say to this mountain, ‘Move from here to there,’ and it will move.”·         1 Samuel 17:48 “As the Philistine moved closer to attack him, David ran quickly toward the battle line to meet him.”·         2 Corinthians 12:9 “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ’s power may rest on me.”Connect with Sara Cormany: On Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/sara.cormanyOn Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/saracormany/Her website: https://saracormany.com/ Send me a COMMENT or QUESTION!
93: Required Deeper Faith and Trust: health-related limitations haven't stopped her with Sara Cormany
Feb 8 2024
93: Required Deeper Faith and Trust: health-related limitations haven't stopped her with Sara Cormany
My guest, Sara Cormany, is a speaker and author of the newly released devotional, Even When: Experiencing God During Difficult Days.The daily fight with a chronic illness became too much to bear, forcing Sara to leave her role as a high school drama and speech teacher. In 2011, Sara’s life-impacting disease became life-threatening.Unaware of the seriousness of her symptoms, Sara continued living as normally as possible for six weeks before being given the news that she’d suffered a stroke. Post stroke, Sara says she has a ‘wonky brain’ and a ‘wonky body,’ but be assured that her wonkiness doesn’t stop her from continuing to pursue her dream of teaching. Now, she teaches through the messages in her book and when she shares messages with audiences.Notable quotes from this episode with Sara Cormany: ·         “When you’ve gone through life thinking, oh, I just have a weird body, but nobody is that woofed about it, so I guess I won’t be either. To words like strokes and death, and it just changed the game. And it requires deeper faith and deeper trust that God, you’ve got this.”·         “He grows beautiful things in and through my story.”·         “I continue to thank Him even in the hard … that’s part of the journey and that’s part of the utter dependence on God.”Connect with Sara Cormany: On Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/sara.cormanyOn Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/saracormany/Her website: https://saracormany.com/ Send me a COMMENT or QUESTION!
92: The Curse of the Easy Button video solocast
Jan 26 2024
92: The Curse of the Easy Button video solocast
In this first video solocast of season six, I'm excited to share some insights I've gained through the hard challenges of my journey. *Please note that this episode is a video solocast. Please visit my YouTube channel @MelonyBrown to watch it. In 2005, the office supply company, Staples, launched a marketing campaign which introduced the 'easy button.' The easy button would solve frustrating situations. The downfall of the 'easy button' is it trained our culture to be frustrated by anything that was hard, or time-consuming, or took too long to obtain. Going through the drive-thru is easier than preparing a home-cooked meal. Ordering cleaning supplies, wrapping paper, and dog food on Amazon is indeed less-time consuming than making a trip to Target. Unfortunately, the 'easy button' marketing campaign has permeated our mindsets. Not just about our errands but about the hard challenges we face in life. John 16:33 reads, "In this life you will have trouble. Take heart, for I have overcome the world." James 1:2-4 reads, "Consider it pure joy, my brothers and sisters,[a] whenever you face trials of many kinds, because you know that the testing of your faith produces perseverance. Let perseverance finish its work so that you may be mature and complete, not lacking anything." Matthew 19:26 reads, "With man this is impossible, but with God all things are possible.” Jeremiah 32:17 reads, "Nothing is too hard for you." When we are going through hard challenges, we see several of God's responses in each letter of the word hard. H - God helps. Check out these additional verses: 2 Samuel 22:36, 2 Chronicles 32:8, Psalm 46:1, and Psalm 121:1-2. We often don't see God helping us. Hebrews 11:1 reminds us, "Now faith is confidence in what we hope for and assurance about what we do not see." A - God is active.Check out these additional verses:Isaiah 64:4, Deuteronomy 23:14, and 2 Chronicles 36:22. R - We receive many blessings from God. Those blessings are activated by hard challenges, which is often how God strengthens, develops, and grows character traits in us. This one is different from the other three letters. You receive blessings when you accept Jesus' salvation. Challenges activate those blessings, which can lead to your growth. Think fruit of the Spirit from Galatians 5:22-23.D - God directs. Check out these additional verses:Proverbs 20:24, Isaiah 48:17, and 1 Kings 17:9. What is the purpose of hard challenges? Your growth is the purpose of hard. Your growth is what makes hard necessary. Your growth is the outcome of hard. Your growth is valuable because you are invaluable to God. In the last third of this episode, I share several hard challenges I've faced and how those challenges activated my growth. *I do not share this to boast about myself. As Paul said in 1 Corinthians 1:31, "Let the one who boasts boast in the Lord.”2 Corinthians 12:9 reads, "My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ’s power may rest on me." Moyamoya disease is a rare cerebrovascular disease that affects 1 in 2 million people. It is characterized by strokes, mini strokes, and migraines. Philippians 4:7 reads, "And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus." Ephesians 6:17 reads, "Take the helmet of salvation and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God." My books, Challenges Won't Stop Me and Keep Moving Forward, are available at www.melonybrown.com.books.Send me a COMMENT or QUESTION!
91: What Healthy Boundaries Do You Need to Establish? with Cherie Denna
Jan 5 2024
91: What Healthy Boundaries Do You Need to Establish? with Cherie Denna
Cherie Denna joined me for episode 90: Didn’t Fit In. Didn’t Belong. A dysfunctional childhood didn’t stop her. Cherie is an author, speaker, and writing coach. In episode 90, she shared about growing up with members of the mob and members of an outlaw biker gang as her family. She witnessed excessive violence, suffered abuse, and never felt like she belonged. If you missed Cherie’s story episode, be sure to listen to it!In this interview, Cherie joined me to discuss the habit of healthy boundaries and why we need to establish them. Notable quotes from this episode with Cherie Denna: * "The Holy Spirit is our protector.” * "Being in God’s Word. There’s a reason why it’s described as a sword. Having that boundary is key. Above any other type of boundary that I could possibly adopt in my life because it all starts with what’s up in my head. What I’m thinking. What I’m focused on is going to determine what I speak and what I do.” * "We can forgive, but we do not necessarily have to be reconciled to that person.”Scripture references:Luke 18:7 “And will not God bring about justice for his chosen ones, who cry out to him day and night? Will he keep putting them off?”Connect with Cherie Denna: On Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/cheriedenna On Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/cheriedenna/ Her website: https://cheriedenna.com/Cherie's memoir, Beloved Outcast: The Quest for True Belonging, is releasing in February of 2024. Send me a COMMENT or QUESTION!
90: Didn't Fit In. Didn't Belong. a dysfunctional childhood didn't stop her with Cherie Denna
Jan 3 2024
90: Didn't Fit In. Didn't Belong. a dysfunctional childhood didn't stop her with Cherie Denna
Excited to kick off season 6 with Cherie Denna's story interview! Cherie Denna is an author, speaker, and writing coach. In this interview, she describes her dysfunctional childhood, which was comprised of mob members from her mom's family and outlaw bikers from her dad's family. Violence occurred daily. Additionally, Cherie and her sister were abused by her stepfather. At 17, she knew she had to get away from that toxic environment. She began to process the violence, abuse, and fear she experienced in her childhood home. The resulting trauma caused PTSD, suicidal ideations, and infertility. Many years later, Cherie accepted an invitation to a ladies retreat at a church from a friend. This event became a turning point for her. She accepted Jesus and discovered her identity and belonging in Him. Cherie's memoir, Beloved Outcast: The Quest for True Belonging, is releasing in February. Notable quotes from this episode with Cherie Denna: * "Just the nature of the culture of belonging to a mob family and being associated with outlaw bikers. Everything had to stay within the family. Nobody outside the family can be trusted." * "I grew up immersed in fear." * "I knew I had to get out of there. I thought I was running from it all. You can't. You can run from the environment, but the after effects of all the trauma goes with you." * [Jesus] set me on a whole different path. I had a way now through Him - through Christ - to truly learn who I was born to be. And who I truly belonged to." Scripture references:2 Corinthians 5:17: "if anyone is in Christ, he is a newcreation; the old has gone, the new had come!" Connect with Cherie Denna: On Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/cheriedennaOn Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/cheriedenna/Her website: https://cheriedenna.com/Send me a COMMENT or QUESTION!
89: Surrender Leads to Transformation: Fulfilling Your Purpose and Potential with Mimika Cooney
Sep 22 2023
89: Surrender Leads to Transformation: Fulfilling Your Purpose and Potential with Mimika Cooney
Excited to have author, speaker, podcaster, and personal trainer for your mind, Mimika Cooney, join me.While Mimika could have chatted about any of the numerous topics she's written about in her ten books, we focused on the topics covered in her soon to be released book, Unlock the Mind of a Champion: How Ordinary People Achieve the Extraordinary. This book can be pre-ordered on Amazon and purchased on September 28, 2023.Surrendering, or yielding to the power of another, is a challenging topic. Being forced to surrender leads to fear, anger, and resentment. Surrendering your will to Jesus leads to transformation and personal growth. Jesus will never force you to surrender your will. When you freely surrender your will to Jesus, you will find freedom. Mimika shares an analogy about breaking a wild horse so as to become a winning racehorse. You may wrinkle your nose at being compared to a racehorse, but listen to her explanation and you'll understand why her analogy is a powerful one!Mimika also describes how God will give you elastic time to complete the tasks He's given you. She encourages us to allow God to stretch us.Enter Mimika's drawing at www.mimikacooney.com until October 6 for a chance to win a signed copy of her book and other goodies to celebrate the release of her new book, Unlock the Mind of a Champion: How Ordinary People Achieve the Ordinary.  To learn more about Mimika Cooney, visit her website at www.mimikacooney.com.Check out her YouTube channel at www.youtube/@mimikacooney for videos and resources. Send me a COMMENT or QUESTION!
88: God Writes Straight by Broken Lines with Maggie Rowe
Aug 23 2023
88: God Writes Straight by Broken Lines with Maggie Rowe
I met today's guest, Maggie Rowe, at the 2023 Blue Ridge Mountains Christian Writers Conference. I enjoyed chatting with her between speakers and taking her class. I truly enjoyed reading Maggie's devotional, This Life We Share: 52 reflections on journeying well with God and others. I knew from the first sentence of the Introduction: "Let's take a road trip!" that Maggie and I likely have a love for journeys in common.Later in the Introduction, Maggie wrote, "The word of God will serve as our map." I could hardly contain my excitement as a map represents the Word of God in my book, Challenges Won't Stop Me! As I read through the devotion topics (anxiety, peace, joy, waiting, gratitude, friendship, parenting, hospitality, faith, prayer, etc.), I realized she covered topics that would interest a person in all stages of life, both male and female. In this episode, Maggie and I discuss two devotion topics that related to overcoming challenges. In the devotion, "Reflection 8: Finding Peace in the Midst of Pain," she shares how a tour guide during a trip to Israel explained the definition of Gethsemane, which is gath (press) and shemen (oil). When Jesus was being crucified, the weight of all sin pressed heavily on Him.While we won't face the challenge of crucifixion, most of have experienced the weight of our challenges pressing heavily on us. Maggie shared how we can experience God's peace during pain.In the devotion, "Reflection 10: God Writes Straight by Broken Lines," Maggie shares this quote by Ann Voskamp: "The seed breaks to give us the wheat. The soil breaks to give us the crop, the sky breaks to give us the rain, the wheat breaks to give us the bread. And the bread breaks to give us the feast." It's in the breaking that we grow.My favorite part of this devotion is the Portuguese phrase, Deus escreve certo por linhas tortas, which translates, "God makes straight by broken lines." I love what Maggie shares about this phrase and how it relates to facing challenges and fighting to overcome them.This Life We Share: 52 reflections on journeying well with God and others and Maggie's other book, Life Is Sweet Y'all: Wit and Wisdom with a Side of Sass, are available on Amazon and wherever books are sold.Learn more about Maggie and connect with her at www.maggierowe.com.Be sure to enter the drawing for a copy of Maggie's book, This Life We Share, by subscribing to her website at www.maggierowe.com between August 23, 2023 and September 1, 2023. A winner will be announced on September 1, 2023!Send me a COMMENT or QUESTION!
85: How Can It Be Good for Me if It's a Four Letter Word? a video solocast from Hawaii
Jul 19 2023
85: How Can It Be Good for Me if It's a Four Letter Word? a video solocast from Hawaii
THIS EPISODE IS A VIDEO SOLOCAST. TO APPRECIATE IT BEST, PLEASE VIEW IT ON MY YOUTUBE CHANNEL @MELONYBROWN.NOTE: This video solocast was recorded in Hawaii, which has a constant breeze blowing. My husband, Jeff, added noise reduction effects to lessen the wind noise, but it didn't remove all of it. Words are composed of letters in various combinations. A list of words will likely come to your mind when I tell you today's topic is a four letter word. Most people will think this four letter word is a curse word. Or a word that is profane or obscene. A swear word. Many avoid using four letter words in conversations, especially if little ears are present.Even though the four letter word I'm discussing in today's vide solocast is not a curse word, some dislike it so much that they still would deem it a curse word.What is this four letter word? WAIT. Yep, you see why some would throw it in with the other four letter curse words. In our fast lane, microwaveable, 4G, lightning speed society, we don't like to wait. In fact, Jen Wilkin, author of Abide: A Study in 1, 2, & 3 John, shares, "We have turned waiting into an enemy that is to be removed. We think waiting is something to be mitigated. It's not something to be sat in. We should be good at waiting." Essentially, we try everything we can to make waiting less harsh or severe.MIssionary and author Elisabeth Elliot said, "He [God] makes us wait. He keeps us on purpose in the dark. He makes us walk when we want to run, sit when we want to walk, for He has things to do in our souls that we are not interested in."As much as we might like to say curse words when we have to (are forced to) wait, many benefits are found in waiting.I share several of those benefits in this episode, as well as several Bible verses about waiting. Listen in to discover the benefits of waiting. Thank you for listening/watching this episode!Send me a COMMENT or QUESTION!
84: Strategies for Fighting Insecurity with Brenda Underwood
Jun 28 2023
84: Strategies for Fighting Insecurity with Brenda Underwood
Brenda Underwood, business life coach, joined me again to share some effective strategies she's learned to implement when she's feeling insecure.In episode 83, titled "Danced with the Devil," Brenda shared some experiences from her traumatic childhood that filled her with fear, rejection, and insecurity. When she encountered God, she immersed herself in reading and studying the Bible. It was in God's Word that she discovered courage, acceptance, and security. Her validation comes from God. She encourages us to "embrace the jewel that God created you to be."Brenda speaks aloud the following verses to combat the enemy when he is roaring and spewing lies:1 Corinthians 12:3 ". . . no one can say, 'Jesus is Lord,' except by the Holy Spirit."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."Galatians 1:10 "Am I now trying to win the approval of human beings, or of God? Or am I trying to please people? If I were still trying to please people, I would not be a servant of Christ."Brenda shared, "The Holy Spirit whispers, and the enemy roars."Learn more about Brenda or connect with her at breakthroughforlife.com.Send me a COMMENT or QUESTION!