Life to Your Soul


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Life to Your Soul Turns 3!

Wow. Can you believe it? We’ve reached a new milestone today. Three years ago today, Life to Your Soul was created with high hopes of becoming a platform for spiritual enlightenment. To my amazement we have expanded through health resources, prayer calls, and reached people from all over the world! To my friends in India, I say thank you. To those in the U.K., thank you. Those who have viewed in China, I thank you. To those from the Philippines, thank you. To my friends in Jamaica, thank you. To those here in the U.S., I say thank you. And to each and everyone of you no matter where you’ve tuned in from, you have become family and a special part of this journey!

Because of your support, Life to Your Soul has come to life. This is no longer just a blog but a revolution! We have uplifted others suffering with depression, anxiety, peer-pressure, fear, and discomfort. LTYS is a movement that will continue to empower & inspire many in new and innovative ways. There are current revisions underway and much great news to come.

Thank You.

 


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Free: The Process – Prayer Call

This week we’ve started The Process series on the prayer call. This series will focus on different stages in our walk with God.

Many of us know that we are free because of Christ’s redemption but do we live free? For some of us, freedom may seem to be experienced when the bills are paid, debt is cleared, or a nice house is purchased. But freedom is truly much more than that.

Now the Lord is the Spirit, and where the spirit of the Lord is, there is freedom. 2 Corinthians 3:17 ESV

Here are some of the points we discussed:

  • Freedom starts in the mind Philippians 4:8John 14:13
  • We are no longer bound to our past 2 Corinthians 5:17
  • Freedom is a choice. “Fear is present when we forget that we are a part of God’s divine design. Learning to experience authentic love means abandoning ego’s insistence that you have much to fear and that you are in an unfriendly world. You can make the decision to be free from fear and doubt and return to the brilliant light of love that is always with you.” – Wayne Dyer
  • Fear paralyzes.
  • Freedom is a process. Isaiah 40:31

Listen to the call below!

06/20 – Prayer Call

Check out this week’s featured song!

If you would like prayer, submit your request here.


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Be Still and Know – Prayer Call

This Tuesday’s call we focused on listening for God’s voice in our lives and watching Him orchestrate in every day situations.

  • What to do when you are presented with many opportunities
  • How to know if God has opened the door for you
  • Not being hasty
  • Resting in God’s peace
  • Understanding and accepting the process

 I shared my testimony of overcoming hastiness and how rushing can prohibit the full manifestation of what God is giving you.

Whatever it is, take a step back and pray for guidance and clarity.

The scriptures we focused on are the following:

“Be still, and know that I am God! I will be honored by every nation. I will be honored throughout the world.” Psalms 46:10 NLT

“No one can serve two masters. For you will hate one and love the other; you will be devoted to one and despise the other. You cannot serve God and be enslaved to money. “That is why I tell you not to worry about everyday life—whether you have enough food and drink, or enough clothes to wear. Isn’t life more than food, and your body more than clothing?  Look at the birds. They don’t plant or harvest or store food in barns, for your heavenly Father feeds them. And aren’t you far more valuable to him than they are?  Can all your worries add a single moment to your life? Matthew 6:24-27 NLT

Check out the link below!

06/13 – Prayer Call

We’d love to pray for you! If you have any prayer requests, submit here.


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Be Still and Know

Did you know that you have purpose? Did you know that God’s plan is freely working together for your good? Here are some truths that I have learned along the way.

You were called with a purpose.

No, you’re not here by chance or circumstance. You were really born with a purpose. The eagle’s purpose is to soar. He catches a certain altitude then he spreads his wings and soars across the open sky.

God designed you with a lifetime of worth and value. Think about all the things you naturally do. You cook, you sing, you program, you design, you plan. You are uniquely you!

Your life does NOT equate to your mistakes.

How many times have you bashed yourself for making another wrong choice? Another mistake. Another missed opportunity. I don’t think I have enough pages to write how many times I have. You replay the scenario in your mind cringing every time you get to the negative part.

Similar to the popular game Sonic, you cannot go backwards. You can only move forward from here. Press forward!

…Forgetting the past and looking forward to what lies ahead, I press on to reach the end of the race and receive the heavenly prize for which God, through Christ Jesus, is calling us. Phillipians 3:13,14 NLT

Walk in your freedom.

Get to the place where you collide with God’s grace. It is freely given. Not by works as stated in Ephesians 2:8. A friend of mine has many tattoos. She previously doubted getting them and wanted to have them removed. When I saw her regretting, I told her that they were beautiful. That they were now apart of her and so she needed to rock them! She received the exhortation and walk confidently. When you get to that place of embracing grace and new life, your past can no longer haunt you.

“Whom the Son sets free is free indeed.”

Pray without ceasing.

Don’t think that because you’ve experienced this new life that trials will not come. As stated in 2 Timothy 3:12, “Everyone who wants to live a godly life in Christ Jesus will suffer persecution.” But take heart and don’t be discouraged. When troubles come your way, consider it an opportunity for great joy. For when your faith is tested, your endurance has a chance to grow. Pray for God to direct you and keep your heart transparent before Him.

Hardships often prepare ordinary people for an extraordinary destiny. – C.S. Lewis

Care about others.

While you are walking in freedom it is not healthy to harbor bitterness in your heart. According to Dr. Kathy J Marshack, If that bitterness is left unresolved, you will begin to see the negative affects not only on your physical health, but your entire life.

I’ve experienced much pain in the past; to the point where I had been harboring bitterness toward those who did me wrong. It became habitual for me to stuff my problems inside instead of addressing them. I did not release it to God and people so my relationships and health were affected. Care enough for yourself and others to release your burdens. Have a talk with someone trustworthy. Ask for advice. If God leads you to, tell the person whom you have the issue with. Because we are loved, we should choose love in all situations.


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Kissed by the Sun.

This week I went on an adventure. To discover the wildly beautiful. My voyage took me very far. From the plains of Maryland to the great wilderness. I went in pursuit of God’s nature. What I discovered was far more pleasant than I anticipated. Journey with me on this voyage through photographs.

First stop, on the trails to wonderland.
Beautiful, vibrant, trees collide with plastic, orange dividers. I feel welcomed as I journey down the trail. 

Next, I was greeted by this Royal Paulownia tree. Royalty welcomes me.
I had to take a closer look at this massive tree. It consisted of deep ridges so detailed that there was no doubt they were handcarved by God. Observing the plants at the base, everything pointed upward so I decided to look up.

What a wonderful sight. Such beautiful ridges and deep indentations. As I studied the patterns in the ridges, the leaves waved down below. I wanted to get a full perspective of the height, so I stooped down low.

I thought I’d just be observing the height of the tree but the base of it allured me as well. Nestled together were chiseled rocks and dandelions. Like little cousins, they were huddled together next to the tree.


The foliage stood tall as I knelt a little closer. I embraced each patch of green goodness.

My gaze then shifted to a bench area. The shadows created contrast in the green grass and bench.

There I sat, taking it all in. This was a moment of reflection. A moment of gratitude. A moment of peace. 


Then I realized something.


Here comes the sun, do do do do… 

The sun peered out between the branches and I felt this overwhelming warmth on my face. I was delighted!

Not only had I been welcomed by the greenery, the sun said hello with it’s warm rays. It was God’s way of showing me the harmony in all of His creation.

I hoped to capture the depth of these clustered leaves in contrast to the top of this tree. It was full but yet separated.


Then it was time to go for a swing. Woodchips, wind, and the faint creeking of metal on my swing as I swayed back and forth.

Then I rested under a tree. I had been wanting to do it lately but was too reserved. 

I clinched the grass in my hands. I planted my feet deep in the blades. I loved every bit of the moment. 

Some moments that I did not get to capture was the discovery of this beautiful, wooden chapel near the forest and a mellow deer kneeling down to eat plants.

Over & Out,

A Nature Lover

“Just ask the animals, and they will teach you. Ask the birds of the sky, and they will tell you. Speak to the earth, and it will instruct you. Let the fish in the sea speak to you. For they all know that my disaster has come from the hand of the Lord . For the life of every living thing is in his hand, and the breath of every human being. The ear tests the words it hears just as the mouth distinguishes between foods. Wisdom belongs to the aged, and understanding to the old. “But true wisdom and power are found in God; counsel and understanding are his.” – Job 12:7-10 NLT

*All pictures taken on a Galaxy S7 🙂


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The Heart of Worship

“God is a Spirit: and they that worship Him must worship Him in spirit and in truth.” John 4:24 KJV

Worship is a total experience. Once the music starts, the whole atmosphere changes. Voices raise, hands stretch out, feet are swayed on. Everyone comes together in expectation waiting to experience God’s presence.

Worship

  1. to honor or reverence as a divine being or supernatural power
  2. to regard with great or extravagant respect, honor, or devotion

20170519_130338Worship is not just a gathering with others. Worship can become a lifestyle. On the morning commute to work, take time to reflect on God’s goodness. How immeasurable is His love and how faithful He has been to us. My gratefulness and worship now expand beyond Sunday service. I’ve caught myself worshiping in the market, in the car, on the job in the bathroom, and many other various places. I get so filled just thinking of how bound I was by fear and how free I am now by Christ’s love.

“Enter his gates with thanksgiving, and his courts with praise! Give thanks to him; bless his name”

Psalm 100:4 ESV

You don’t have to perfect yourself. Let Christ’s love do the work.

20170524_084617Take the first step in your transformation process. Once we experience God’s presence we go on a clean sweep rampage. We tend to try to clean our own lives and fix everything including those around us. God admires our zeal, but it is not our job to be the quicker-picker-upper.

But if we are living in the light, as God is in the light, then we have fellowship with each other , and the blood of Jesus, his Son, cleanses us from all sin.

1 John 1:7 NLT

The truth is we all have had moments of worship in our lives. It is through dancing. It comes with singing. Through ministering before others. Worship comes from the heart.

Let all that you do be done in love. 1 Corinthians 16:14 ESV

Whether that’s singing, teaching, fasting, modeling, dancing, constructing, cleaning, typing, styling, or anything else; do it in love.

We can’t worship in spirit and in truth without love. No matter what you do may your heart be humble. Give your burdens over to God and reach out to Him. He’s waiting for you.

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Thank you Father for your love. Thank you for giving me access to your amazing grace. Your peace is like none other. You are the best thing that has ever happened to me. I can come freely to you, knowing that you will not judge me but you will embrace me. I appreciate your ultimate sacrifice. I appreciate your guidance. I surrender to you. Every pain, every scar, every thought, and every intention. Cleanse me for only you can. Heal me and I shall be healed. I receive your gift and I choose to worship you with a heart of gratitude. Forgive me for ever doubting you. Forgive me for ever thinking my plan would be better than yours. Make me over. Change my walk, my talk, and my thoughts so that I may please. With you, I am free. No more chain hold me down. In Jesus’ name I pray, Amen.

If you prayed that prayer and would like more information on worship and salvation, click here.

Peace and Blessings!

Whom the Son sets free is free indeed.


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A Love that Abides – Prayer Call

Oh, what a fun-filled experience we’ve had on Tuesday’s prayer call. Here is a list of what we expounded on:

Check out the link below!

05/23 – Prayer Call

If you have a prayer request we’d be delighted to pray for you! Submit your request here.


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Walks with God

I started out walking to the bus stop. Persistent, driven, and focused on getting to work. But all of the sudden, my busy morning commute turned into a peaceful stroll with the Savior.

I felt God in the wind. Heard His voice in the trees. Felt His warmth in the sky’s sun rays. Oh what bliss. Time stood still as we strolled. Moments like this were not always so evident.

I’ve always been on the go. If you ask my parents they’ll tell you how much of a busybody I was. Whether to work, school, family functions, or church it didn’t matter. I was ready to go. Always running late but always on the go.source.gif

One day, I was spending time with family downtown. We were exploring the scenery and checking out the quaint shops. But when it was time to go I quickly turned into the energizer bunny. I power-walked pass the crowds in pursuit of my destination. Then I heard voices calling from a distance. “Shantel.” When I turned around, my family was still far behind me. I had walked ahead of them as soon as we left the store. As I stood there, I thought to myself, Man, this is not good.

“Why are you rushing?”

I suffered from panic attacks and social anxiety. I thought, while in crowded, public spaces that the whole world was staring at me. It was difficult for me to enjoy outings with my family. I wanted to be free but fear paralyzed me.

Those who live in the shelter of the Most High will find rest in the shadow of the Almighty.

Psalm 91:1 NLT

I recall contemplating calling out of work one day because I was afraid that people would stare as I crossed the streets. Now, here I was strolling down the street, taking in the scenery, listening to the birds chirp on my way to work.

Healing is ready and available to you. I know how it feels to be in that “dark tunnel” of fear. You feel stranded, distant, and alone. But you are not alone. The God of peace will rescue you. Just reach out. Don’t carry that burden by yourself. #Release. You have help in the refuge of God’s arms and those he sends to encourage you. Don’t be afraid to reach out for help. You are not a mistake. Your life is far from over. Surrender.

I am free from that anxiety that once surrounded me.


God,

We thank you for revealing that you are able. That You have the power to heal and deliver. We take comfort in knowing that if we stretch out our hand to You, You will save us with your Mighty arm. You are compassionate God. As stated in Zephaniah 3:17, You will rejoice over us with joy, quiet us with Your love, and rejoice over us with singing. Your grace is enough. Send others in our paths to pray for us and guide us in encouraging others. Fear is already defeated and we believe that we are victorious through the blood of Jesus Christ as stated in Hebrews 9:12. Thank you for saving us. Amen


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What A Love

I recall having this demented idea of love. I thought that love was similar to what you saw in the movies. The main character would be an emotional wreck.

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Then out of the blue, someone would come to her rescue. And they’d live happily ever after, right?

Lights, Camera, Action!

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I loved love. Studied princesses like the bible, observed wardrobe choices, and fancied the royal lines. In order to be great, you would have to hang out with the great, right? I needed to know what it took to live happily ever after.

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What really fascinated me was the concept of the royal kingdom. There were so many people called to serve in it. You had paupers, handmaids, royal guards, florists, and many more. They all seemed like a close-knit family. I envied their royal lives.

I grew up impoverished. Although a family of seven, mom and dad never wanted us to see their struggle. Sometimes I would go to school and see the girls with the latest accessories and clothes. I’d wish for those things. My childhood consisted of wanting the finer things in life. So I would pray for them.

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I didn’t want to be seen as impoverished so I would believe for greater things. Fancy houses, cars, watches, you name it (in my Shirley Caesar voice). Lacking did not set right with me. But I realized within myself that something was lacking.

I couldn’t grasp it but something was missing. Although it was nice to dream for great things I was not fully satisfied.

Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness, for they shall be filled.

Matthew 5:6 NKJV

I came to learn that what was missing was Jesus in my life. After an encounter in His presence, I fell head over heels. I learned that I was a part of a royal family!

His love took away my shame and gave me a new hope. I was able to utilize faith in every area of my life and trust Him to move in the areas that were still a work in progress.

Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; old things have passed away; behold, all things have become new2 Corinthians 5:17 NKJV

Release negativity, bitterness, self-righteousness, doubt, and fear. Your Glorious King has commissioned you. He has called you as His own. Accept your royal heritage!

Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a huge crowd of witnesses to the life of faith, let us strip off every weight that slows us down, especially the sin that so easily trips us up. And let us run with endurance the race God has set before us.

Hebrews 12:1 NLT

We are no longer impoverished people. The King is here and He is here to stay.I am so glad to know that He loves us and accepts us as His own.

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But you are a chosen generation, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, His own special people, that you may proclaim the praises of Him who called you out of darkness into His marvelous light.

1 Peter 2:9 NKJV

*Most pictures featured are from one of my favorite movies, Princess Diaries.


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Hallowed Be Thy Name

Um… Hi God. It’s me Shantel.

Prayer has been incorporated in my life for as long as I can remember. It would be in the wee hours of the morning when mom would call us to pray. Tired, cranky, and half-sleep we’d gather in the living room of our home. Mom would begin thanking God for all of us, for clothes, shelter, and food.

After thanking Him for all of those things, mom would praise God for His goodness. As a child, I did not understand why she’d lift her voice and cry out at that point. I also couldn’t comprehend why we were up so early. But as the tears rolled down mom’s face, I knew she was sincere.

As I got older, prayer had become more of a chore in my eyes. We would pray before church, during service, before bed, and early in the morning. Prayer was a central focus in our home but not in my heart. But soon things started to change.

Then Jesus said, “Come to me, all of you who are weary and carry heavy burdens, and I will give you rest.

Matthew 11:28 NLT

My world seemed to be crashing down during high school years. I battled with low self-esteem, depression, peer pressure, and a sharp tongue. Eventually, my problems had reached their boiling point. I was not eating right, was not focused in my classes, had lost motivation even at home. Prayer seemed to be my only option. As I sobbed in my bedroom one day, I tried to muster up the words to say.

God, nobody likes me… 

I wanted to be accepted by God although I was broken inside. He was my only hope.

Will you marry me?

That question came from a place of emptiness inside. I was ashamed and realized that although I had participated in prayer and gone to church, I did not know God for myself. This was my chance to experience Him personally.

As I laid there, I felt a sense of relief. It was almost as if God had whispered Yes. in my ear. Somehow I felt His love. My tears of sorrow and shame turned into tears of joy.

Come close to God, and God will come close to you.

James 4:8 NLT

I began thanking God for loving me and caring about me. My whole outlook had changed. I had become confident in my prayers and eager to learn more about it. I would volunteer in church to lead prayer. God encouraged me to pray for my family, friends, peers at school, and those who had done me wrong.

God restored me and took away my guilt & shame. I am thankful for this powerful resource that we all can possess.


Prayer is a very important portion of a believer’s life. It is something that we should not avoid. God desires a relationship with us. Check out the following quotes and scriptures about prayer.

  •  Rejoice always, pray without ceasing, in everything give thanks; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you. – 1 Thessalonians 5:16-18
  • Don’t worry about anything; instead, pray about everything. Tell God what you need, and thank him for all he has done. Then you will experience God’s peace, which exceeds anything we can understand. His peace will guard your hearts and minds as you live in Christ Jesus. – Philippians 4:6,7
  •  And we are confident that he hears us whenever we ask for anything that pleases him. – 1 John 5:14

If you have a prayer request, fill out the form here.

Enjoy National Prayer Day.


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A Jewish Heart

I will claim you as my own people, and I will be your God.Then you will know that I am the LORD your God who has freed you from your oppression in Egypt.Exodus 6:7 NLT

Growing up, I became fascinated with the Jewish people and their culture. I admired (and still do to this day) their biblical names, practices, and attire to name a few. Even in movies (hint: Prince of Egypt) Hebrew people stood out as a special group.

shofar_still_life Continue reading