My Story | Age 16

I’ve alluded to my personal story in previous posts, but I wanted to take the next several weeks and share with you in detail the struggles, trials, and triumphs of the last 5 years! I want to take September & part of October to reflect on all God has shown me through these valleys and mountaintops.Story1

At 16, I was almost a year into my chronic headaches. I was a year into those beginning feelings of loss. Loss of health. Loss of physical ability. Loss of capability. Loss of confidence. To this day, I’m not certain whether or not I needed to feel those emotions, but I did and they hurt.

Moving from a physically-able body to a chronically-pained one proved to be a difficult process. I internalized the struggle and fought vainly to overcome it. I spent so much time in pain that I barely made room for anything else. In effect, I worshiped my pain.

 

In the summer of 2012, I worked in Leadership Live at Ironwood Christian Camp — a program for teens to learn about the ministry and apply that same knowledge to actual labor. I also grew up at this camp, but that is a story for another time.

Anyway, I worked 6 weeks with 10 other girls, crammed into a tiny room, while serving in the camp kitchen! Surprisingly, I loved it. But my pain remained deep and perplexing.

Continue reading “My Story | Age 16”

Be a Good Steward of Good Times

Once upon a time when I was engaged, I learned something significant … but let’s back up the story to December 23, 2014.

engaged!Ben said he was going to take me to his favorite place. So on Tuesday, we walked behind his house and over the bridge. We strolled along the creek as we admired all those childhood tree-fort ruins.

We spread out a blanket and sat. Ben looked nervous, so I made light conversation, enjoying the breeze. After awhile, we walked closer to the creek and stood. Ben bounced with nervous energy. I didn’t say anything, but I could see the outline of the ring box in his jacket pocket. So, I waited.:) Continue reading “Be a Good Steward of Good Times”

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by Takiela Bynum 2013©

The Scarless Letter

Hello Beautiful.

I know you are carrying the weight of the world on your shoulders right now. Family issues, the kids at school, boy drama, grades, and the list goes on. Add sex (pregnancy scare or worse), drugs, or alcohol into the equation and it upgrades your life from bad to worse.

You’ve isolated yourself and are drowning in depression. Numb from any feelings of hope, craving death. You pick up a razor and start to cut, ultimately leaving scar after scar until…red-eye-liner-swatch

Does this sound familiar?

When I look at you, I see the past me. My prayer is that when you look at me, you’ll see the (possible) future you. Twenty years ago I was fifteen and dealing with the issues of life. Feeling lost and I would often embrace thoughts of eternal sleep. My mind had grown tired of the endless troubles going on in my life at that time. I wanted to escape. I wanted peace. I began to cut. My only hope was that one day I’d hit a vein that would take me out of my misery…forever.

Understand that no one told me that my life wouldn’t always be filled with hurt and pain. I didn’t know that I’d have a life bursting with more joy that I could ever imagine. I wasn’t aware that every scar I put on my body, I’d have to give an account for one day (to my children). My present hurt prevented me from seeing my future hope.

When you’re in a hopeless state of mind, you may not realize it, but you’re telling God that even He is incapable of solving your problems. It’s too complicated for Him to resolve. You’re saying things are the worst it could ever be and will always be this way, ultimately shutting out the only One who can bring you out.

Your future in Christ is much brighter than any darkness you will ever endure. (Read Roman 8:18) No one shared that truth with me which makes me obligated to share this vital information with you.

Today let’s make a pledge, from this day forward we’re going “scarless!” We can’t do anything about the old scars but we can choose not to make new scars. Let’s put down our razors and pick up scarlet red eyeliner. When or if we ever get the urge to cut, use the red eyeliner. It’ll help remind you of the blood Jesus shed on the cross for you and it’ll also wash away…never leaving a scar.

I, (insert name here), being of sound mind and body, here do pledge to God and all who love me on this month (insert month here), of this day (insert day here), in this year (insert year here) to bury all self-harming ways, never to be exhumed again! In the sight of God and all witnesses, I promise if and/or when I get the urge to self-harm, I’ll replace my instrument of destruction with an instrument that represents hope, a scarlet red eyeliner pencil, instead. I will do this in remembrance of the blood Jesus shed on the cross for me, (insert name here). I am committed to the “scarless” pledge. With God nothing is impossible.

Find an accountability partner, someone who will help you commit to this pledge. Know that you have fans cheering you on and praying for you in heaven and all over the earth. Even though I’ll already be praying, if you’d like me to pray for a specific person/situation or if I can help in another way comment below publicly or email me privately (takiela@takielabynum.com). Take the “scarless” pledge today!

 

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Our prayer team and Takiela love taking the concerns of others to the throne of God. Yes, we pray each week on Throne Room Thursday. However, because life doesn’t have a pause button, we have committed to pray everyday with and for each of you. If you have a prayer request you’d like to submit, no matter what day it is, please send it to us.

Let us stand in agreement with you and make our petitions known to the Lord – Phil 4:6. The all powerful Lord tells us that where two or three are gathered in His name He is in the midst of them…imagine if you had an entire team of godly women praying on your behalf?!

How can we pray for you today?

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Unleashing the Lioness

I praise you, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made; your works are wonderful, I know that full well.”

This particular verse in Psalms (Psa.139:14) is quoted numerous times, however, I often wonder if we are grasping the full meaning of this Scripture.

Young women do you realize that you are the living sum of both fear and wonder? That statement in and of itself is powerful: fear plus wonder equals YOU.

When I think of the fear coupled with wonder my soul is automatically drawn to the lioness. The lioness is strong and sleek, the step in her stride is with profound purpose. She is simply stunning. With her paw (hand) she is capable of killing and caressing and with her roar (voice) she will seize and capture you simultaneously. She too is the embodiment of both fear and wonder.

Her beauty is often revealed in her strength, her beauty is undeniable and her power is un-disputable; her serenity is fierce. Her splendor brings exultation to her Creator; her essence makes glorious His praise.

You, young women, are fearfully and wonderfully made, indeed.

As the glorious beauty of His creation you have the power to dispel darkness at any given moment. The Holy Spirit in you far exceeds the might of any opposition you may encounter in the world according to  I John 4:4.

God is not glorified when his daughters are faint, weak, or cower in defeat. It’s like a lioness thinking it’s a grasshopper. How can her father, the King of the jungle, obtain the honor due to him when his daughter thinks she’s powerless?

We, young women, are the daughters of the Lion of Judah, created to make his praise glorious! We must take our rightful place in the kingdom of God! We are victorious, we are over comers, and we are more than conquerors through Christ Jesus our Lord and Savior.

Now is the time, unleash the lioness!

Prayer: Heavenly Father I come before you today with thanksgiving and praise. I thank you for conquering sin, death, and the grave. I thank you that you are all powerful. Forgive me for when I doubted the power that you’ve given me. Forgive me when I didn’t see myself as a lioness and daughter of the Lion of Judah. Help me to walk as your daughter, the lioness. Help me to remember the true meaning of Psalms 139:14 – I am the living sum of both fear and wonder. When opposition comes, bring this truth back to my memory. Enable me to stand victoriously in Christ Jesus. I ask these blessings in your son’s Jesus name, Amen.