DIY Spa Pedicure (and why I don’t go to the nail shops anymore)

I want to share with you guys how I do my own pedicures at home but first I want to briefly explain why I don’t go to the Asian places anymore. So I no longer go to the nail shops (or eat at most Chinese restaurants!) because these people (the owners of these establishments) are obviously worshiping false gods. And you may think that I’m being a little dramatic but why do think there are alters in these places?? Religion is really commercialized in the western world but people in different cultures are very serious about worshiping and paying homage to their ancestors and gods (aka demons). For some, it’s just common sense. But for many of us, things like this have to be brought to our attention. So I’m challenging you to examine yourselves. How is it that you (if you’re claiming to be of God!) are so comfortable amongst such profane things in these shops and with eating food sacrificed to idols? Just something to think about.

 

But anyway, my DIY Spa Pedicure! Now I’ve been giving myself pedicures for the past 2 years now and it is so easy and inexpensive. Here is a list of the things I recommend you have, as well as the steps to my little pedicure routine.

 

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1. A foot bath

Now I started off with one of those plastic dish tubs from the dollar store! Just recently, I worked my way to a real foot spa tub. So if you don’t have the budget to go all out, don’t worry about it (neither do I!). The plastic dish tub worked just fine. Honestly, the only reason I upgraded was because the water didn’t stay warm enough (or for too long).

2. A manicure set (or you can create your own by purchasing the items individually)

Just make sure that your set includes a nail clipper, emery boards, tweezers and a manicure (or cuticle) stick.

3. A pumice stone—this is a must! I got mine from big lots. I used to have a really good one from TJMaxx!

4. Some kind of foot soak. I just use a couple drops of Eucalyptus Essential oil

5. A moisturizer (preferably something creamy. If you’re interested, here’s the recipe to my DIY Lavender Body Butter that could also be used as a foot cream!)

and 6,7,8,9,10. Anything else you would like to personalize the experience. For instance, I like to light a pretty candle and add a handful of beautiful flower petals to my water. You could use flowers from your garden or buy them from the clearance section of your super market!

My routine

So first I RELAX, and soak my feet for about 10-15 mins. Then I cut my toenails and rub a little extra virgin olive oil into my cuticles (to soften them up). After soaking my feet for a few more minutes, I work on my cuticles then exfoliate the bottom of my feet with the pumice stone to my liking. Next, I file and shape my toe nails. I don’t wear any nail polish so this is the end where I would just pat my feet dry and apply something moisturizing. That’s it! And I always feel like a brand new woman.

So, I hope you consider all these things and let me know about some of your own natural beauty tips and/or routines!

With love, Brandi

♥♥In case you’re interested, I also blogged on..

Why I don’t wear make up and hair weaves

How I dress now after my encounter with Jesus

My Natural beauty tips for Christian women

How I care for my daughter’s natural hair

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Time for a trim! Which I do as often as she needs them.

My daughter Janelle is 8 years old, and she has some beautiful, long and healthy natural hair. But her hair hasn’t always been this long or this healthy because when I was in the world I didn’t know how to care for my own hair let alone hers! So anyway, I want to share what I’ve been doing just in case any of you are also on this healthy hair (and hair growth) journey.

1. I wash and deep condition her hair weekly

Every Sunday, I wash her hair and deep condition it with a hydrating hair mask. And after I’m done I dry it with an old maxi skirt (or t shirt). I do not use dry off towels, and I finger detangle her hair while I’m applying the deep conditioner.

2. Moisturizers and protective styling

Either every morning or every night before bed (depending on how her hair looks and feels) I apply a moisturizer and an oil to seal her hair. We both use the Mielle Organics Avocado hair milk as well as some regular avocado oil from the grocery store. This is a must! Because dry and frizzy hair is a recipe for breakage.

The next thing I do is also very important. I believe that protective styles and deep conditioning is what has done the most for her strands (meaning restoring them and retaining their length). So I keep her hair protected in loose buns, which she loves just as much as she enjoys wearing her hair down.

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3. I model godly femininity before her

Now ya’ll know me (if you follow my blog!), everything we do needs to be done to the glory of God. Raising godly daughters in this perverted and superficial world can be very challenging, especially when we have struggles and insecurities of our own. So I teach my daughter (from the bible and by being) that beauty as we know it is not of God (It’s seduction and deception!). I teach her that true femininity is about being modest (godly) and helpful (not hindering or competitive!). Now of course, she still wants to put on a floral dress and do something cute to her hair (we all do!) and there’s nothing wrong with that as long as it doesn’t become an obsession or our identity is found in all of that. Also, I make sure that I’m kind to myself, and that I compliment other women and their unique features (like freckles etc.) in front of her. That way she can learn to embrace the diversity which in return (or subconsciously) will encourage her to love and to embrace herself.

So yeah, I hope that these things help you on your journey. May God bless you and all of your beautiful daughters 🙂

Much love, Brandi

♥♥By the way, here’s some more natural beauty tips for Christian women 

Vain belief vs Saving faith

You say you have faith, for you believe that there is one God. Good for you! Even the demons believe this, and they tremble in terror.” (James 2:19. NLT)

So in a previous post I talked a little bit about false converts from the new age, and it inspired me to just address false converts in general. Because unfortunately, there are millions of people who think that they are “saved” (or in right standing with God) just because they believe in the God of the bible or in the idea of Jesus Christ. But I’m here to remind you that “believing” is not enough. We have to believe unto righteousness.

Romans 10:9 says that if we confess with our mouths and believe in our hearts that Jesus  is Lord and was raised from the dead then we’ll be saved but your pastor left out the next and most important thing!

So let’s read it, starting at Romans 10:8 “But what does it say? “The word is near you, in your mouth and in your heart” (that is, the word of faith which we preach): (*verse 9:) that if you confess with your mouth the Lord Jesus and believe in your heart that God has raised Him from the dead, you will be saved. (*NOW VERSE 10:) For with the heart one believes unto righteousness, and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation.” (Romans 10:8-10, *my own interjections)

You see, we have to believe UNTO righteousness. Like James said, all that Faith without works stuff is DEAD! And I’m not talking about our own self righteous works or efforts to try and appear godly to our own selves (or before men!). I’m talking about the POWER OF GOD that should be working in you to accomplish all that pleases Him.

Dear friends, you always followed my instructions when I was with you. And now that I am away, it is even more important. Work hard to show the results of your salvation, obeying God with deep reverence and fear. For God is working in you, giving you the desire and the power to do what pleases him.” (Philippians 2:12-13, NLT)

So if we’re denying God in our works (by the way we’re treating others and living out our lives), then we are either false converts or reprobate. And quite frankly, children of the devil.

They profess that they know God; but in works they deny him, being abominable, and disobedient, and unto every good work reprobate.” (Titus 1:16)

See salvation, and being a true believer doesn’t come from knowing of God (like the demons do!). It comes from hearing the truth and loving the truth (which is Jesus and his message or “gospel”) and loving the Father. And when we truly love God we obey Him and His commandments aren’t burdensome (1 John 5:3). We will begin to do what is good and right not because we’re forced to but because we’re in agreement with Him therefore He empowers us.

“And we are His witnesses to these things, and so also is the Holy Spirit whom God has given to those who obey Him.” (Acts 5:32)

This is not only how we come to repentance but CONTINUE therein. When you truly have faith, you will no longer abide in this world or by it’s corrupted “beliefs” or value systems. After learning the ways of the Lord, you’ll become ashamed and remorseful behind how you have been living/sinning. And if you truly believe that Jesus died in order for us to overcome all of this, then you will believe to the point of abandoning  your life as you knew it to go on and wholeheartedly follow him.

So again, the result of faith is not going to hangout at some event called church on Sundays.  True, saving faith results in a (from the inside out) sanctification process. It’s being the butt of every joke. It’s losing all of your friends and family members because they’re offended by the TRUTH. So I hope you understand. Don’t be like those who have a form of godliness but deny the power thereof. From such turn away.

With nothing but love, Brandi

♥♥By the way, I created a page where you can read along (or just watch and listen!) to the bible with me. If you’re interested, here’s the link 🙂

“So then faith comes by hearing, and hearing by the word of God.” (Romans 10:17)

Bible reading: Galatians

Hey guys 🙂 I hope everyone’s week is off to a great start! So this morning I read Galatians on the bible reading page of the blog and I also wanted to share the video on the home page because this letter is very informative. Today, people who aren’t even Jewish are going back and attempting to keep the law of Moses. If you aren’t careful, and deeply rooted in the Scriptures you could be blown away by this wind of the whole Hebrew roots movement (which is a false doctrine). So, if you’ve ever wondered (because I know I have!) what you should or shouldn’t be doing (or observing!) in Christ, join me because Galatians is a good place to start. Much love and prayers!

Your sister, Brandi

♥♥ Click here for more read along videos like this this one

False new age converts and witchcraft in the church

I pray that your love will overflow more and more, and that you will keep on growing in knowledge and understanding. For I want you to understand what really matters, so that you may live pure and blameless lives until the day of Christ’s return. May you always be filled with the fruit of your salvation—the righteous character produced in your life by Jesus Christ—for this will bring much glory and praise to God.” (Philippians 1:9-22, NLT)

So I’ve been wanting to address this for some time now because every time I sign into YouTube, somebody gotta “testimony” of how Jesus delivered them from the new age. And I’m not saying that God isn’t saving people, I’m just saying that the majority of these people are delusional.

Many false Christs have arrived (especially in our minds!) so if you’re coming out of the new age, I beseech you to truly examine yourselves and the God you’ve come to know.

You see, I’ve studied witchcraft in the past so I know (personally!) all the demons and haughty mindsets that come with that. And if we can just be honest, the reason we got into all of that in the first place was because we wanted to play God and try to create an escape from our mediocre lives (or past and present traumas). But how many of you know that wanting to be like God was satan’s sin (and what also caused the fall of man!). It’s like an addiction. Once you’ve dabbled in the occult for some years (unless you’re completely of the devil) you’re going to want something better and more powerful. And I believe that this is how many of you ended up “coming to Christ”. You heard a false gospel of “love” aka tolerance and now you think you’re riding off into the sunset with the POWER of the holy spirit. But in reality, you’re still not HOLY (set apart from the world), now you’re just an intellect or a “spiritual” person that goes to church.  And I’m not trying to rain on your parade but going to church and reading the bible with a carnal mind does not make you a follower of Jesus Christ. Neither does letting Joel Osteen and Joyce Meyers make a merchandise of you!

So what am I saying? What am I suggesting to you? I’m telling you to examine yourself because YOU could be a false convert. And don’t be offended and all in your feelings about this. I was a false convert from 2012 to 2016ish!

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Look at me (in the stripped shirt) doing some “Christian yoga” (2015)

Witchcraft has infiltrated the church because church people don’t truly know or fear the Lord. We have created God (in our minds) to be who we want (and FEEL) Him to be. That’s why we’re steadily attempting to “sanctify” profane things. We wanna slap a “Christian” label on something bad as if that declares it holy (Christian rap, Christian yoga, Christian witches etc.). But God ALONE has the authority to declare what is holy and what is not. And He already established all of that. He doesn’t change with the culture! And this goes for all of us. Because witchcraft isn’t always blatant. Just rebelling against the ways and commands of the Lord in general is considered witchcraft.

So Samuel said: “Has the Lord as great delight in burnt offerings and sacrifices, As in obeying the voice of the LordBehold, to obey is better than sacrifice, And to heed than the fat of rams. For rebellion is as the sin of witchcraft, And stubbornness is as iniquity and idolatry. Because you have rejected the word of the LordHe also has rejected you from being king.” ( 1 Samuel 15:22-23, NKJV)

So let us learn a lesson from King Saul, just simply learn and obey the ways and commands of the Lord. If He will reject our thoughtful sacrifices then we know that He is still not accepting strange fires (please read). Don’t follow people or even your own heart (which the bible says is deceitful and wicked above all else—Jeremiah 17:9) into worshiping God (or yourself!) however you want. Read the bible and take it literal. Don’t rely on the demonic theologian’s and ungodly scholar’s interpretations. PRAY to be filled with the holy ghost. He will teach you everything you need to know ( 1  John 2:26) and those apart of the true body of Christ will edify and confirm what He’s already told you. The commentary (and the average church!) is full of vain imaginations of man. Where do you think all of these self serving attitudes and false doctrines are coming from?

See to it that no one takes you captive through philosophy and empty deception [pseudo-intellectual babble], according to the tradition [and musings] of mere men, following the elementary principles of this world, rather than following [the truth—the teachings of] Christ.” (Colossians 2:8, AMP)

So, if you’re serious about worshiping God (not only in “spirit” but IN TRUTH!) and being a follower of Jesus Christ, I pray you take heed to what I’m saying. May the Lord be with IN you all.

 

With love, Brandi

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Which means following the examples of truth, righteousness and sufferings  he has set before us.

 

Modesty thrift haul and more!

Since we’ve been talking a little bit about modest apparel and natural beauty, I thought it would be appropriate to share what I just bought from the Goodwill with you.  I am currently building a small capsule wardrobe so when I finish, I’ll share all the looks and details as well♥

Much love and prayers!

Brandi

♥♥If you’re new (or just interested!), here’s a few more posts on Modest apparel 🙂

How to choose Modest apparel

How I dress now after my encounter with Jesus

My Headcovering experiences

My go to headcovering style (tutorial)

My go to Headcovering style+a mini Headcovering haul

Hey Guys! So I thought I would share a very pretty and classy low bun headcovering tutorial in case anyone is new to covering their head during public worship (or just wanting more options!). Also, if you’re interested, here’s a link to my Headcovering experiences♥ 

Much love, Brandi Collins

♥♥Here’s a few more posts on Modesty:

How I dress now after my encounter with Jesus

How to choose modest apparel

Why I no longer wear any makeup or fake hair

My natural beauty tips for Christian women

 

Loving the unlovable (Encouragement for struggling stepmothers)

(Featured image provided by Pexels.com)

“Though I speak with the tongues of men and of angels, but have not love, I have become sounding brass or a clanging cymbal. And though I have the gift of prophecy, and understand all mysteries and all knowledge, and though I have all faith, so that I could remove mountains, but have not love, I am nothing. And though I bestow all my goods to feed the poor, and though I give my body to be burned, but have not love, it profits me nothing. Love suffers long and is kind; love does not envy; love does not parade itself, is not puffed up; does not behave rudely, does not seek its own, is not provoked, thinks no evil;does not rejoice in iniquity, but rejoices in the truth; bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things. Love never fails.”

( 1 Corinthians 13:1-8, NKJV)

Whew! That passage of scriptures right there will end your life if you think that you are some great or mature woman in the Lord but hate your step children. You guys, I have been holding off on this post for SO long now because I know all about this struggle. I have a step daughter who lives with us and who honestly, gets on my ever lasting nerves. I have wished her away plenty of times. I have even tried to divorce my husband behind her. So trust me, the things that I am going to share are real, and a little hard to hear but necessary. And I can’t promise that by the end of this post that you’ll adore your stepchildren (because I’m still working on it!). But you will know how to endure your suffering and what is unacceptable on your part as a woman professing godliness.

So first things first, a quick “disclaimer”. I understand that not everyone is struggling as a step parent. This post is for those of us who are. Also, it takes a certain level of discernment and maturity to acknowledge that even children can be used by the devil. People typically think that the children are always innocent but we ALL were born into sin and shapen in iniquity.  HOWEVER, we can not try to blame others for our sin like Adam did. So in this post, we are going to just focus on ourselves and take accountability for our own thoughts and actions (or reactions!).

So anyway,  let’s begin with the marriage. If you believe that your marriage was a match made in heaven, then you definitely need to honor (and enjoy!) it and let NO ONE (not even yourself) destroy it. Like I said, I tried to leave in the beginning. Thank God my husband loves me like Christ loves church and understood that no one, not even our children should come before our spouses. Now just for the record, even if you know that God DIDN’T join you two together, you still have to honor that covenant. Concerning stepchildren in general, divorce is not an option.

Now that we’ve gotten that out of the way, let’s talk a little bit about love. Love is a term that has been really abused and misused. We live in a deceived world where we have been taught (ultimately by satan) that love is a feeling. Love is not a feeling or a “liking”, it is an attribute of God. It is an action or a deed, meaning a process of something selfless being done. Not knowing this can really hinder you in growing to love your step children. I remember being really discouraged because I thought that I would never love my stepdaughter because I didn’t like her or FEEL like I loved her. If you’re sitting around waiting on your feelings to line up with the commands of God, then you will be waiting forever or even worst, double minded. There will be times when we have to go directly against our feelings. And God will change our feelings when we learn to THINK and act differently. This is how we become sanctified. Our flesh will NEVER be willing to submit to the laws of God.

 “For those who live according to the flesh set their minds on the things of the flesh, but those who live according to the Spirit, the things of the Spirit. For to be carnally minded is death, but to be spiritually minded is life and peace. Because the carnal mind is enmity against God; for it is not subject to the law of God, nor indeed can be. So then, those who are in the flesh cannot please God. But you are not in the flesh but in the Spirit, if indeed the Spirit of God dwells in you. Now if anyone does not have the Spirit of Christ, he is not His.  And if Christ is in you, the body is dead because of sin, but the Spirit is life because of righteousness. But if the Spirit of Him who raised Jesus from the dead dwells in you, He who raised Christ from the dead will also give life to your mortal bodies through His Spirit who dwells in you.” (Romans 8:5-11, NKJV)

This is another lie I believed. I believed that I was being fake when I would force myself to act in loving ways. Hear me, we are never being fake (or even hypocrites) when we are trying to obey God in spite of our feelings. That is the whole point of crucifying our flesh and dying to self. We can love people whether we FEEL like it or not because true love is not a feeling it is the power of God. And if we claim to have His spirit then we can (and will!) love. Otherwise we are liars.

Dear friends, let us continue to love one another, for love comes from God. Anyone who loves is a child of God and knows God. But anyone who does not love does not know God, for God is love. God showed how much he loved us by sending his one and only Son into the world so that we might have eternal life through him. This is real love—not that we loved God, but that he loved us and sent his Son as a sacrifice to take away our sins. Dear friends, since God loved us that much, we surely ought to love each other. No one has ever seen God. But if we love each other, God lives in us, and his love is brought to full expression in us. And God has given us his Spirit as proof that we live in him and he in us. Furthermore, we have seen with our own eyes and now testify that the Father sent his Son to be the Savior of the world.  All who declare that Jesus is the Son of God have God living in them, and they live in God. We know how much God loves us, and we have put our trust in his love. God is love, and all who live in love live in God, and God lives in them. And as we live in God, our love grows more perfect. So we will not be afraid on the day of judgment, but we can face him with confidence because we live like Jesus here in this world. Such love has no fear, because perfect love expels all fear. If we are afraid, it is for fear of punishment, and this shows that we have not fully experienced his perfect love. We love each other because he loved us first. If someone says, “I love God,” but hates a fellow believer, that person is a liar; for if we don’t love people we can see, how can we love God, whom we cannot see? And he has given us this command: Those who love God must also love their fellow believers.” ( 1 John 4:7-21, NLT)

And I think its worth mentioning that we need to accept the scriptures as they are. We begin to deceive ourselves when we try to ignore what they say or try to justify ourselves. I remember being so wicked while reading this thinking that I was only commanded to love by brothers and sisters in Christ not bad kids or unbelievers. But guess what? That’s how people deceive themselves. By picking and choosing what they want instead of taking in the full counsel of the Word. Jesus told us to pray for those who persecute us and to bless our enemies. So when it comes to hating ANYBODY including our stepchildren there are NO excuses. Hatred is a murderous spirit. and we know that no murderer has eternal life within them.

• “You are of your father the devil, and it is your will to practice the desires [which are characteristic] of your father. He was a murderer from the beginning, and does not stand in the truth because there is no truth in him. When he lies, he speaks what is natural to him, for he is a liar and the father of lies and half-truths.” (John 8:44, AMP)

• “We know that we have passed from death unto life, because we love the brethren. He that loveth not his brother abideth in death. Whosoever hateth his brother is a murderer: and ye know that no murderer hath eternal life abiding in him. Hereby perceive we the love of God, because he laid down his life for us: and we ought to lay down our lives for the brethren.” ( 1 John 3:14-16)

You see, we love by laying down our will (and satan’s will!) for the benefit of someone else. And as wives, it is our duty (which is a moral and legal obligation) to wholeheartedly assist our husbands in raising OUR (which includes theirs!) children up in the fear and admonition of the Lord. And speaking of passing from death to life, that is the resurrection! THAT IS THE POWER OF THE GOSPEL. We were dead in our sin but now we have been raised to life in the spirit. Now, in Christ, we have the power to overcome ALL spiritual wickedness. And how to we do this? We DO this by DOING what is good and right. Especially when doing what’s good and right is the hardest!

If it is possible, as much as depends on you, live peaceably with all men. Beloved, do not avenge yourselves, but rather give place to wrath; for it is written, “Vengeance is Mine, I will repay,” says the Lord.  Therefore “If your enemy is hungry, feed him; If he is thirsty, give him a drink; For in so doing you will heap coals of fire on his head.” Do not be overcome by evil, but overcome evil with good.” (Romans 12:18-21, NKJV)

Now it all seems simple but if you’re anything like me, you’ve let the situation (or in my case, circumstance) plague you with resentment and bitterness. This is a very dangerous place to be in. And I’m going to be honest, if you (or I!) die in this place we’re going straight to hell. So we have to climb out of this grave. And not just for ourselves, but for our husbands or for any other children in the situation because bitterness is contagious.

Pursue peace with all people, and holiness, without which no one will see the Lord:  looking carefully lest anyone fall short of the grace of God; lest any root of bitterness springing up cause trouble, and by this many become defiled;” (Hebrews 12:14-15, NKJV)

So, if you have bitterness in your heart don’t throw in the towel. There is hope. Confess your sins to the Lord (acknowledge them as wrong and hate them) and consider these four tips that have TREMENDOUSLY helped me out.

1. Pray

Prayer is tried in true. And that’s all I have to say about that.

2. Remember the golden rule

One of the greatest commandments is loving others as yourself. If we do not care for our stepchildren as we would (or do) our own then we will be in BIG trouble. Another thing I do is imagine a step parent hating and even possibly mistreating my children. Now if you love your kids like I love mine, then trust me, those thought’ll get you right.

3. Cast down vain imaginations

Stepchildren (and babymamas and sometimes even grandmothers!) can make your life seem UNBEARABLE. But that is a lie. Not only are there other people in the same situation but some of them have overcome it! Besides, God will not suffer us to be tempted beyond what we can bear. Sinful thoughts are what make painful emotions (and annoyances) unbearable.

No trial has overtaken you that is not faced by others. And God is faithful: He will not let you be tried beyond what you are able to bear, but with the trial will also provide a way out so that you may be able to endure it.” ( 1 Corinthians 10:13, NET)

So, we have to take every thought captive. We have to stop replaying events and conversations in our heads over and over again. We have to stop imagining things that haven’t even happened yet! THERE IS NO FAITH IN THAT.  So let’s allow God to transform us and eventually our situations by the renewing of our minds.

• “For though we walk in the flesh, we do not war according to the flesh.  For the weapons of our warfare are not carnal but mighty in God for pulling down strongholds, casting down arguments and every high thing that exalts itself against the knowledge of God, bringing every thought into captivity to the obedience of Christ,” ( 2 Corinthians 10:3-5, NKJV)

• “Finally, brethren, whatsoever things are true, whatsoever things are honest, whatsoever things are just, whatsoever things are pure, whatsoever things are lovely, whatsoever things are of good report; if there be any virtue, and if there be any praise, think on these things.” ( Philippians 4:8) 

4. Fear God (And of course, this is last but not least.)

Ultimately, we must work out our salvation with fear and trembling. We must believe that all of those scriptures concerning love and treating others right also applies to us. God is no respecter of persons. We will be judged righteously. It’s no surprise to God that your spouse had a child (or children). So, welcome this kind of circumstance if not as anything else, as discipline. It is better to suffer in doing what is right than to be punished by God for doing what is wrong ( 1 Peter 3:17). When we obey God instead of contending for what we want (or think we deserve), we become those living sacrifices that are pleasing and acceptable to Him. So, let us worship our God and be good stewards of everything (including EVERYONE) He has entrusted to us♥

I hope this post has encouraged you in your situation, and if you know a step mother who is struggling PLEASE share this post with her. The struggle is REAL. And more importantly this could be a matter of spiritual life and death. God bless you all. Please email me if you are compelled to and also keep me in your prayers as well.

Much love, Brandi Collins

DIY Lavender Body Butter

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Last week I shared some of my natural beauty tips as well as my must have beauty products. So I thought that I would also share how to make my DIY body butter that was mentioned. I do not buy lotion or use anything other than Shea butter (or carrier oils) on my skin. So here’s the recipe and of course, you can tweak it to your liking.

Ingredients:

1/2 cup of each raw Shea butter and unrefined Coconut oil

1 Tbsp each  Jamaican black Castor oil, Avocado oil, Extra virgin Olive oil

About 7-10 drops of 100% pure Lavender Essential oil 

Directions:

Melt all of the ingredients (accept the essential oil) in a double broiler or in a glass Pyrex boil on top of a medium sized saucepan (with about an inch of boiling water).

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When everything has melted and blended together, turn off the heat and stir in your drops of essential oil(s). When the bowl is cool enough to handle, store in the fridge (or in the freezer if you’re in a hurry!) to solidify for a couple of hours.

When your mixture is solid. Bring it to room temperature. You don’t want it completely soft but you should be able to leave a little finger indent. Then, whip your mixture on high speed until you’ve reached your desired consistency. For me, that’s about 10 minutes.

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Again, you can adjust this recipe to suit your needs. Each and every ingredient in this mixture works wonders for my hair and skin (together and separately). Also, I like a creamy (and slightly oily) body butter because I have thirsty hair and skin. So if you find this recipe a bit too greasy, don’t use as much of the carrier oils or just keep your body butter stored in the fridge. Anyway, I hope you try it. And if you make any homemade hair and body products let me know. I’m looking for a good DIY deep conditioner.

Your sister, Brandi

♥♥ By the way, here’s some relevant posts:

My natural beauty tips for Christian women

Why I don’t wear any makeup or fake hair

How I dress now after my encounter with Jesus

How to choose modest apparel

My Headcovering experience

Abusing Grace and Once saved always saved

Well first of all, let me just start off by saying that we can not abuse grace. We are either continuously maturing in the Lord and being sanctified or we are deceived. And like the apostle Paul, I would not have you to be ignorant concerning these things. So I want to talk a little bit about Grace and how it doesn’t just “cover” sin but it cures it.

In Romans, we learn that the freedom of God’s grace doesn’t allow us to be lawless but frees us from the bondage of sin to be servants (or workers) of God and righteousness (aka DOING or should I say living out good works).

  For the sin of this one man, Adam, caused death to rule over many. But even greater is God’s wonderful grace and his gift of righteousness, for all who receive it will live in triumph over sin and death through this one man, Jesus Christ. Yes, Adam’s one sin brings condemnation for everyone, but Christ’s one act of righteousness brings a right relationship with God and new life for everyone.Because one person disobeyed God, many became sinners. But because one other person obeyed God, many will be made righteous. God’s law was given so that all people could see how sinful they were. But as people sinned more and more, God’s wonderful grace became more abundant. So just as sin ruled over all people and brought them to death, now God’s wonderful grace rules instead, giving us right standing with God and resulting in eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord. Well then, should we keep on sinning so that God can show us more and more of his wonderful grace? Of course not! Since we have died to sin, how can we continue to live in it?Or have you forgotten that when we were joined with Christ Jesus in baptism, we joined him in his death? For we died and were buried with Christ by baptism. And just as Christ was raised from the dead by the glorious power of the Father, now we also may live new lives. Since we have been united with him in his death, we will also be raised to life as he was. We know that our old sinful selves were crucified with Christ so that sin might lose its power in our lives. We are no longer slaves to sin. For when we died with Christ we were set free from the power of sin. And since we died with Christ, we know we will also live with him. We are sure of this because Christ was raised from the dead, and he will never die again. Death no longer has any power over him.When he died, he died once to break the power of sin. But now that he lives, he lives for the glory of God. So you also should consider yourselves to be dead to the power of sin and alive to God through Christ Jesus.Do not let sin control the way you live; do not give in to sinful desires.Do not let any part of your body become an instrument of evil to serve sin. Instead, give yourselves completely to God, for you were dead, but now you have new life. So use your whole body as an instrument to do what is right for the glory of God. Sin is no longer your master, for you no longer live under the requirements of the law. Instead, you live under the freedom of God’s grace. Well then, since God’s grace has set us free from the law, does that mean we can go on sinning? Of course not! Don’t you realize that you become the slave of whatever you choose to obey? You can be a slave to sin, which leads to death, or you can choose to obey God, which leads to righteous living. Thank God! Once you were slaves of sin, but now you wholeheartedly obey this teaching we have given you. Now you are free from your slavery to sin, and you have become slaves to righteous livingBecause of the weakness of your human nature, I am using the illustration of slavery to help you understand all this. Previously, you let yourselves be slaves to impurity and lawlessness, which led ever deeper into sin. Now you must give yourselves to be slaves to righteous living so that you will become holy. When you were slaves to sin, you were free from the obligation to do right. And what was the result? You are now ashamed of the things you used to do, things that end in eternal doom. But now you are free from the power of sin and have become slaves of God. Now you do those things that lead to holiness and result in eternal life. For the wages of sin is death, but the free gift of God is eternal life through Christ Jesus our Lord.” (Romans 5:17-6:23)

You see, people who love the world and their sin more than they love Jesus want to believe that grace excuses sin but it doesn’t. We are not saved by grace alone. We are save by grace THROUGH FAITH, which produces fruits of repentance and holiness (living separate from this world and set apart for God.)

 For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God: Not of works, lest any man should boast.” (Ephesians 2:8-9)

And the whole point Paul was trying to make (and MADE for those of us who aren’t trying to justify sin and weaknesses which we’ll talk about in a minute) was that we can’t  be proud because we’re overcoming sin and living (and thinking!) right because we didn’t (and couldn’t) quicken ourselves. God changed us! Therefore all glory belongs to Him. And this, my friends is the power of the resurrection. We WERE dead in our sin (remember the wages of sin is death but the gift of God is eternal life). So for those of you who claim to be in Christ but are still comfortable with sin and in living a worldly lifestyle, you may have a form of godliness but you are denying the power thereof. From such TURN AWAY (2 Timothy 3:5)!

Now concerning our sinful natures, yes, we are susceptible to this world. Paul said that no good thing dwelt in his flesh but the difference (between him and these hyper grace believers) is that he knew sin would hinder him in serving the Lord and ultimately cause him to go to hell (be “a cast away”). He didn’t want to remain that way. He tried to pray his thorn away but God assured him that even in that, His GRACE WAS SUFFICIENT. We too have serious issues and unpleasant circumstances that get the best of us but in Christ we have the power to bring those things into subjection and walk in righteousness (continuously doing what is good and right).

Nothing excuses sin and God does NOT tolerate it. If you are truly struggling with something then either your will is behind it or you haven’t been truly born again. Trust me, I’ve had to come to terms with both! So I hope you consider what I’m saying. Let go of all traditions of men (and doctrines of devils!). There’s no such thing as once saved always saved, we have to ABIDE in the HOLY Spirit we’ve been given.

With nothing but love, Brandi

For the grace of God that bringeth salvation hath appeared to all men, Teaching us that, denying ungodliness and worldly lusts, we should live soberly, righteously, and godly, in this present world; Looking for that blessed hope, and the glorious appearing of the great God and our Saviour Jesus Christ; Who gave himself for us, that he might redeem us from all iniquity, and purify unto himself a peculiar people, zealous of good works.” (Titus 2:11-14)

Amen♥♥

3 natural beauty tips for Christian women+ my must have natural “beauty” products

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Now if you didn’t know,  I don’t wear any make up or fake hair. I believe all of that stuff is ungodly and you can read more about that here. But just because I don’t wear makeup or dress in certain ways, doesn’t mean that I don’t have or understand the desires we as women have to look and feel pretty.

I never said that holiness equates to homelyness. No, we’re not supposed to obsess over our outward appearances but it is not a sin to look nice or presentable (according to what’s nice and presentable to God of course). So, I just wanted to clarify that and share 3 ways that I personally take care of my physical appearance.

1. By embracing our uniqueness

Let’s face it! We are called to be different. We are God’s very own representatives on the earth and God is HOLY. When you accept that painting your face is not of God and how we are told not to “fashion” ourselves after this world, then the holy Spirit can (and will) begin to direct you on what is and isn’t lovely and/or appropriate for those professing godliness.

“And so, dear brothers and sisters, I plead with you to give your bodies to God because of all he has done for you. Let them be a living and holy sacrifice—the kind he will find acceptable. This is truly the way to worship him. Don’t copy the behavior and customs of this world, but let God transform you into a new person by changing the way you think. Then you will learn to know God’s will for you, which is good and pleasing and perfect.” (Romans 12:1-2, NLT)

As individuals,  we also have to accept what we were born with. For instance, I would prefer super long and thick healthy hair but my hair is super thin and currently shoulder length (I’m working on it!) but the point is, we may never have someone else’s skin tone, hair texture, body type etc. So we have to be content with who we are and in what we have.  And if it’s something you can naturally fix like your weight or my hair length then we have to be PATIENT. It didn’t take one day to gain 100 pounds  or to damaged your skin (or in my case hair!). So it’s going to take more than one day, one month or possibly even longer than one year for us to properly heal.

2. Eating well

Now this is also a very important tip. And as Christians, we should understand the concept of “FROM THE INSIDE OUT”. God, in all of His kindness and wisdom provided everything we need (through WATER, and every herb bearing seed and trees) to look and feel good physically. In addition to Genesis,  I know this to be true because I’m a vegetarian and I usually eat my food raw or cook every meal from scratch (And I’m not saying there’s anything wrong with eating meat. There’s not!).  Now I don’t do much physical exercise other than indirectly through household chores, but my husband has been my motivation to start working out.  He looks (and says he feels) SO good just from doing daily push ups and of course, eating well.  If you’re into fitness, I would love to hear what works for you. And if you’re interested in what to eat (or in what I eat) just let me know and I’ll share all of that in an additional post.

3. Using Natural Products

Now this goes hand in hand with number 2 because the products we use on our bodies are just as important as what we’re eating.  I try to just stick with organic products that can also be used to cook with. But of course, just like every other woman I get enticed by lovely smells and by beautiful packaging 🙂 So whenever I do buy commercial products, I just make sure to read all of the ingredients and labels. You will never look and feel your best if you’re continuously dumping poison into your skin and gut.  So I encourage you to just stop and think about that. You may think that someone vain is the most beautiful thing you’ve ever seen but just wait until they take off all that make up and weave and all of that “trendy” clothing. It’s a deception. They don’t even want to see themselves like that. They might even be a man! It’s all lies and stumbling blocks. Beauty as we know it is NOT of God.

But anyway, that’s a whole’nother post. I  hope that you’ve enjoyed this one, and I want you all  to know that embracing (godly) femininity isn’t a crime, It’s a must!

With nothing but love, Brandi

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Now I literally just “woke up like this” (clear skin)

 

♥♥Here’s a list of my favorite, must  have products

Skincare:

African black soap and Shea Moisture’s Olive oil and Marula baby wash

My DIY Lavender body butter and my DIY Peppermint (or lemon) sugar scrub
Raw Shea butter
Unrefined Coconut oil
Avocado oil
Extra virgin Olive oil
Sweet almond oil
Castor oil
Vitamin E oil or capsules

Essential oils (100% pure essential oils can be expensive so I am slowly but surely building my collection. I have a few essential oils mainly for DIY household cleaning products but the ones I often use for bath and body are Lavender, Eucalyptus, Lemon and Peppermint.)

Hair care:

I am currently using ( and loving!) Shea moisture and Mielle products on my hair.  I definitely plan on making my own but for now it’s just trail and error. I  also use some of the oils on my hair that were mentioned above.

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♥♥Side note: If you’re interested, I also blogged on how I dress and How To choose modest apparel!

Delusion, the part of God’s judgment we overlook

 Even him (* The Antichrist), whose coming is after the working of Satan with all power and signs and lying wonders, And with all deceivableness of unrighteousness in them that perish; because they received not the love of the truth, that they might be saved. And for this cause God shall send them strong delusion, that they should believe a lie: That they all might be damned who believed not the truth, but had pleasure in unrighteousness. But we are bound to give thanks alway to God for you, brethren beloved of the Lord, because God hath from the beginning chosen you to salvation through sanctification of the Spirit and belief of the truth:” ( 2 Thessalonians 2:9-13, *my own interjection) 

So I just got through reading an article on Lauren Daigle. And I don’t know why i’m saying that like I didn’t literally just learn about her 5 minutes ago! So if you don’t know who that is, it doesn’t even matter. Just know that she is a sell out. And that’s what all of these so called Christians are in the entertainment industry. They claim to be of God but either compromise or cower out and deny our Lord when they’re confronted on sound doctrine. But anyway, what inspired this post was the fact that she (like many others!) don’t want to offend or call sin what it is. But we can not side step sin. People  have to know the truth in order to be saved. And for those who know (or have been exposed to) the truth but still choose to reject it (because they love sin and the world too much), God will (if He hasn’t already) turn them over to themselves. And this is something we rarely ever think about. We always talk about hell and the lake of fire but we forget that the wrath of God already abides on the unbelievers.

He that believeth on the Son hath everlasting life: and he that believeth not the Son shall not see life; but the wrath of God abideth on him.” (John 3:36)

So, I just wanted to share my thoughts with you. May the Lord be with us in these “unbelievable” times.

Your sister, Brandi

(Romans 1:16-32) “For I am not ashamed of this Good News about Christ. It is the power of God at work, saving everyone who believes—the Jew first and also the Gentile. This Good News tells us how God makes us right in his sight. This is accomplished from start to finish by faith. As the Scriptures say, “It is through faith that a righteous person has life.” But God shows his anger from heaven against all sinful, wicked people who suppress the truth by their wickedness.They know the truth about God because he has made it obvious to them. For ever since the world was created, people have seen the earth and sky. Through everything God made, they can clearly see his invisible qualities—his eternal power and divine nature. So they have no excuse for not knowing God. Yes, they knew God, but they wouldn’t worship him as God or even give him thanks. And they began to think up foolish ideas of what God was like. As a result, their minds became dark and confused. Claiming to be wise, they instead became utter fools. And instead of worshiping the glorious, ever-living God, they worshiped idols made to look like mere people and birds and animals and reptiles. So God abandoned them to do whatever shameful things their hearts desired. As a result, they did vile and degrading things with each other’s bodies. They traded the truth about God for a lie. So they worshiped and served the things God created instead of the Creator himself, who is worthy of eternal praise! Amen. That is why God abandoned them to their shameful desires. Even the women turned against the natural way to have sex and instead indulged in sex with each other. And the men, instead of having normal sexual relations with women, burned with lust for each other. Men did shameful things with other men, and as a result of this sin, they suffered within themselves the penalty they deserved. Since they thought it foolish to acknowledge God, he abandoned them to their foolish thinking and let them do things that should never be done. Their lives became full of every kind of wickedness, sin, greed, hate, envy, murder, quarreling, deception, malicious behavior, and gossip. They are backstabbers, haters of God, insolent, proud, and boastful. They invent new ways of sinning, and they disobey their parents. They refuse to understand, break their promises, are heartless, and have no mercy. They know God’s justice requires that those who do these things deserve to die, yet they do them anyway. Worse yet, they encourage others to do them, too.”

Knowing God is knowing His ways

“With all my heart I have sought You, [inquiring of You and longing for You];
Do not let me wander from Your commandments [neither through ignorance nor by willful disobedience].” (Psalm 119:10, AMP)

If you’re anything like me, you have this desperate desire to know God  more intimately. And if He’s drawing you to Himself then you MOST DEFINITELY have this same longing for Jesus too.

A few months ago, I decided to get serious about seeking the Lord.  So I  google every scripture I could find on seeking God and printed them out. As I began to read through the packets I created, I began to realize (or rather it was revealed to me ) that seeking God meant learning and walking in His ways.

When we learn right from wrong (in His eyes) and what is true and what is not, we are walking with Him if we allow those laws and truth to govern our lives. But if we believe that we know God and are still walking in darkness, then we have deceived ourselves. We aren’t in fellowship with Him or His Son. We don’t even know them!

Whosoever abideth in him sinneth not: whosoever sinneth hath not seen him, neither known him.” ( 1 John 3:6)

Or “This then is the message which we have heard of him, and declare unto you, that God is light, and in him is no darkness at all. If we say that we have fellowship with him, and walk in darkness, we lie, and do not the truth: But if we walk in the light, as he is in the light, we have fellowship one with another, and the blood of Jesus Christ his Son cleanseth us from all sin.” ( 1 John 1:5-7)

So, if you are seriously seeking the Lord, I encourage you to read all of Psalm 119 because here we find David (a man after God’s own heart) loving God through learning and obeying His law.

With love, Brandi

♥♥Side note: I created an additional page to the blog where I will be simply reading through the New Testament. If you’re interested, be sure to check that out. I would LOVE for you to join me!

Preparing for the end of the world and NO pre-trib rapture

For then shall be great tribulation, such as was not since the beginning of the world to this time, no, nor ever shall be. And except those days should be shortened, there should no flesh be saved: but for the elect’s sake those days shall be shortened (*Shortened not escaped). Then if any man shall say unto you, Lo, here is Christ, or there; believe it not. For there shall arise false Christs, and false prophets, and shall shew great signs and wonders; insomuch that, if it were possible, they shall deceive the very elect. Behold, I have told you before. Wherefore if they shall say unto you, Behold, he is in the desert; go not forth: behold, he is in the secret chambers; believe it notFor as the lightning cometh out of the east, and shineth even unto the west; so shall also the coming of the Son of man beFor wheresoever the carcase is, there will the eagles be gathered together. Immediately after the tribulation of those days shall the sun be darkened, and the moon shall not give her light, and the stars shall fall from heaven, and the powers of the heavens shall be shaken: And then shall appear the sign of the Son of man in heaven: and then shall all the tribes of the earth mourn, and they shall see the Son of man coming in the clouds of heaven with power and great glory. And he shall send his angels with a great sound of a trumpet, and they shall gather together his elect from the four winds, from one end of heaven to the other.” (Matthew 24:21-31, *my own interjection)

Now, before I write (or type up!) anymore posts on being prepared for the end of time, I  thinks it’s very important to let those of you who may not know that there will be no pre-tribulation rapture. Not only is the term “rapture” not in the bible, but the idea of it goes against what the Bible actually teaches (making it a false doctrine). And the danger of being misinformed about the second coming of the Lord is that you will not be prepared for his arrival or for what is coming upon the earth FIRST.

And war broke out in heaven, Michael [the archangel] and his angels waging war with the dragon. The dragon and his angels fought, but they were not strong enough and did not prevail, and there was no longer a place found for them in heaven. And the great dragon was thrown down, the age-old serpent who is called the devil and Satan, he who continually deceives and seduces the entire inhabited world; he was thrown down to the earth, and his angels were thrown down with him. Then I heard a loud voice in heaven, saying, ‘Now the salvation, and the power, and the kingdom (dominion, reign) of our God, and the authority of His Christ have come; for the accuser of our [believing] brothers and sisters has been thrown down [at last], he who accuses them and keeps bringing charges [of sinful behavior] against them before our God day and night. And they overcame and conquered him because of the blood of the Lamb and because of the word of their testimony, for they did not love their life and renounce their faith even when faced with death.  Therefore rejoice, O heavens and you who dwell in them [in the presence of God]. Woe to the earth and the sea, because the devil has come down to you in great wrath, knowing that he has only a short time [remaining]!’ And when the dragon saw that he was thrown down to the earth, he persecuted the woman who had given birth to the male Child.  But the two wings of the great eagle were given to the woman, so that she could fly into the wilderness to her place, where she was nourished for a time and times and half a time (three and one-half years), away from the presence of the serpent (Satan). And the serpent hurled water like a river out of his mouth after the woman, so that he might cause her to be swept away with the flood. But the earth helped the woman, and the earth opened its mouth and swallowed up the river which the dragon had hurled out of his mouth. So the dragon was enraged with the woman, and he went off to wage war on the rest of her children (seed), those who keep and obey the commandments of God and have the testimony of Jesus [holding firmly to it and bearing witness to Him].” (Revelation 12:7-17, AMP)

So here we see that the great tribulation is the wrath of satan. It is not the wrath of God which of course we who are in Christ are not appointed. And I think that’s what people who believe in a pretrib rapture are arguing. They think that Jesus is going to come gather us together with him in the clouds which he WILL (on the LAST day) but their timing is off.

But I would not have you to be ignorant, brethren, concerning them which are asleep (*dead), that ye sorrow not, even as others which have no hope. For if we believe that Jesus died and rose again, even so them also which sleep in Jesus will God bring with him. For this we say unto you by the word of the Lord, that we which are alive and remain (*on the earth!) unto the coming of the Lord shall not prevent (*precede) them which are asleep. For the Lord himself shall descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of the archangel, and with the trump of God: and the dead in Christ shall rise first: Then we which are alive and remain shall be caught up (*or “raptured”) together with them in the clouds, to meet the Lord in the air: and so shall we ever be with the Lord (*Eternity). Wherefore comfort one another with these words.” (1 Thessalonians 4:13-17, * my own interjections)

In context, Paul was not encouraging us with a false sense of security from end times persecution. He was encouraging those who were grieving over the death of believing loved ones. There will be nothing occultic (secret or hidden) about the return of Jesus. Everything is going to go down publicly and globally, once and for all on the same day.

Behold, he cometh with clouds; and every eye shall see him, and they also which pierced him: and all kindreds of the earth shall wail because of him. Even so, Amen.” (Revelation 1:7)

All of creation will see and the ones we admire (like the angels, prophets and apostles etc.) longed to know more about the end and this blessed generation of the faithful saints. Praise God, for letting us play a major part in history instead of trying to carnally ESCAPE these things.

How pampered (in the western world) and self righteous are we? To believe that we are too good or “holy” to  go through tribulation and be persecuted. God shows no partiality. Besides, there are true believers with obviously more faith and dedication than us (Americans) being martyred RIGHT NOW in other countries for testifying to Jesus and his gospel. Why haven’t they been raptured? I’ll tell you why, because the rapture is false doctrine. We who remain on the earth until the last day WILL experience the greatest tribulation we’ll have to endure in order to be saved.

And as he sat upon the mount of Olives, the disciples came unto him privately, saying, Tell us, when shall these things be? and what shall be the sign of thy coming, and of the end of the world? And Jesus answered and said unto them, Take heed that no man deceive you. For many shall come in my name, saying, I am Christ; and shall deceive many. And ye shall hear of wars and rumours of wars: see that ye be not troubled: for all these things must come to pass, but the end is not yet. For nation shall rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom: and there shall be famines, and pestilences, and earthquakes, in divers places. All these are the beginning of sorrows. Then shall they deliver you up to be afflicted, and shall kill you: and ye shall be hated of all nations for my name’s sakeAnd then shall many be offended, and shall betray one another, and shall hate one another. And many false prophets shall rise, and shall deceive many. And because iniquity shall abound, the love of many shall wax cold. But he that shall endure unto the end, the same shall be saved.” (Matthew 24:3-13)

So, I hope you pray about these things. And will be overjoyed when his glory is revealed because you were a partaker of his sufferings.

With nothing but love, Brandi

♥♥ These things I have spoken unto you, that in me ye might have peace. In the world ye shall have tribulation: but be of good cheer; I have overcome the world. (John 16:33)

 

Preparing ourselves for Tribulation and Judgement

“Beloved, think it not strange concerning the fiery trial which is to try you, as though some strange thing happened unto you: But rejoice, inasmuch as ye are partakers of Christ’s sufferings; that, when his glory shall be revealed, ye may be glad also with exceeding joy. If ye be reproached for the name of Christ, happy are ye; for the spirit of glory and of God resteth upon you: on their part he is evil spoken of, but on your part he is glorified. But let none of you suffer as a murderer, or as a thief, or as an evildoer, or as a busybody in other men’s matters. Yet if any man suffer as a Christian, let him not be ashamed; but let him glorify God on this behalf. For the time is come that judgment must begin at the house of God: and if it first begin at us, what shall the end be of them that obey not the gospel of God? And if the righteous scarcely be saved, where shall the ungodly and the sinner appear? Wherefore let them that suffer according to the will of God commit the keeping of their souls to him in well doing, as unto a faithful Creator.” (1 Peter 4:12-19)

As we’re approaching the end of time, I am beyond obliged to share the gospel. It’s like the majority of Christians are fooling around waiting on some rapture but by the grace of God I am here to remind you of what the Bible actually teaches.

We WILL go through the tribulation, and I’ll talk more about that in the next post because that is what the (which I believe is this) last generation of believers have to endure in order to be saved.

“Then shall they deliver you up to be afflicted, and shall kill you: and ye shall be hated of all nations for my name’s sake. And then shall many be offended, and shall betray one another, and shall hate one another.  And many false prophets shall rise, and shall deceive many. And because iniquity shall abound, the love of many shall wax cold. But he that shall endure unto the end, the same shall be saved. (Matthew 24:9-13)

But like I said, we’ll talk about that in another post. Today, I just want to warn you that JUDGEMENT IS COMING. Are you ready? Are you prepared to stand before the Son of Man? And I’m talking about blamelessly. Not with all those excuses you’ve been telling yourself.

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The heart is deceitful above all things, and desperately wicked: who can know it?
 I the Lord search the heart, I try the reins, even to give every man according to his ways, and according to the fruit of his doings.” (Jeremiah 17:9-10)

Personally, I’ve been working on getting my own self together. So I want to share 3 areas with you that I am targeting.

1. Repentance and holiness (being set apart)

Little children, let no man deceive you: he that doeth righteousness is righteous, even as he is righteous. He that committeth sin is of the devil; for the devil sinneth from the beginning. For this purpose the Son of God was manifested, that he might destroy the works of the devil. Whosoever is born of God doth not commit sin; for his seed remaineth in him: and he cannot sin, because he is born of God. In this the children of God are manifest, and the children of the devil: whosoever doeth not righteousness is not of God, neither he that loveth not his brother.” (1 John 3:7-10)

The deception is REAL. We have professing Christians out here living sinful lifestyles and scoffing at holiness. It is time to lay aside every weight and sin that weighs us down. And if there are any idols in our hearts we need to surrender them NOW. It is also time to forgive. Seriously, this is the last call to come separate and purify ourselves.

So you must live as God’s obedient children. Don’t slip back into your old ways of living to satisfy your own desires. You didn’t know any better then. But now you must be holy in everything you do, just as God who chose you is holy.  For the Scriptures say, ‘You must be holy because I am holy.’ And remember that the heavenly Father to whom you pray has no favorites. He will judge or reward you according to what you do. So you must live in reverent fear of him during your time here as “temporary residents.”” (1 Peter 1:14-17, NLT)

2. Prayer (and taming the tongue)

Praying consistently (and fervently) is also something that I am working very hard on. It takes discipline AND DESIRE to spend most of your time talking (and trying to listen) to an invisible God. But prayer builds faith. Which is vital now and will be when you’re drinking your cup of suffering.

Also, I want to address talking too much. Some of us (especially me) are displeasing God by being mouth almighty. A word to the wise is—Silence. Because we will give an account for all these malicious, idle and careless words we’re speaking. So, we would do good to SHUT UP. And remember that ALL liars will have their part in the lake of fire (Revelation 21:7-8).

O generation of vipers, how can ye, being evil, speak good things? for out of the abundance of the heart the mouth speaketh. A good man out of the good treasure of the heart bringeth forth good things: and an evil man out of the evil treasure bringeth forth evil things. But I say unto you, That every idle word that men shall speak, they shall give account thereof in the day of judgment. For by thy words thou shalt be justified, and by thy words thou shalt be condemned.” (Matthew 12:34-37)

3. Productivity

I remember when God first starting dealing with me concerning the end times. I became so fearful like the servant who hid his talent in the ground. But God let me know that He still expects us to live good (as in peaceful) and productive lives. So we have to make it our business to carry out the commands as well as any individual tasks we’ve been assigned. For me, that’s edifying others through the blog and being a good steward of the gifts and people He’s entrusted to my care.

So, I hope that you consider these things. May the Lord finish the good work he started in us all!

With love, Brandi

♥♥Side note: I created an additional page to the blog where I will be simply reading through the New Testament. If you’re interested, be sure to check that out. I would LOVE for you to join me!

“So then faith cometh by hearing, and hearing by the word of God.” (Romans 10:17)

Obsessing over demons and conspiracy theories

Do not participate in the worthless and unproductive deeds of darkness, but instead expose them [by exemplifying personal integrity, moral courage, and godly character];  for it is disgraceful even to mention the things that such people practice in secret. (Ephesians 5:11-12, AMP)

Now I purposely shared the amplified version because I think that in “exposing” evil or in being “enlightened” we can get a little too caught up and miss the whole memo.  YES, demons are real and things like population control and the New World Order are obviously not just theories. But as followers of Jesus Christ, revelation and understanding are given so that we can overcome. People of the world are also interested in these things but the difference is (or should be!) that we aren’t afraid or obsessed with these things. The entire world is under the trickery and wrath (TRIBULATION) of the devil. IT IS WRITTEN! Therefore we know these things ARE and WILL come to pass (happen).

So, the point of this post is just to remind you not to get lost in the rabbit holes. Studying demonic entities and governmental conspiracies (or ungodly celebrities etc.) is as Solomon would say, ALL VANITY. At the end of the day, these things are not edifying. And I know from personal experience that they produce more fear (and idolatry!) than anything.  So, if we must, let us simply expose these things by living out the gospel of Jesus Christ. Not by telling any and everyone who will listen to our fascinations. The bible says that it is a SHAME to even mention what these occultic people are doing.

And have no fellowship with the unfruitful works of darkness, but rather reprove them. For it is a shame even to speak of those things which are done of them in secret.” (Ephesians 6:11-12)

So again, we need to just simply accept the truth about these things and move on. Not being ignorant of satan’s devices. And remembering that knowledge puffeth up but true wisdom (and understanding) will cause you to fear God and live right in the midst of it all. I hope you understand what I’m saying.

With nothing but love and lots of prayer,

Your sister, Brandi

Put on the whole armour of God, that ye may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil. For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places. Wherefore take unto you the whole armour of God, that ye may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand.” (Ephesians 6:11-13)

♥♥Side note: I created an additional page to the blog where I will be simply reading through the New Testament. If you’re interested, be sure to check that out. I would LOVE for you to join me!

“So then faith cometh by hearing, and hearing by the word of God.” (Romans 10:17)

Forsaking family for Christ

“Think not that I am come to send peace on earth: I came not to send peace, but a sword. For I am come to set a man at variance against his father, and the daughter against her mother, and the daughter in law against her mother in law. And a man’s foes shall be they of his own household. He that loveth father or mother more than me is not worthy of me: and he that loveth son or daughter more than me is not worthy of me. And he that taketh not his cross, and followeth after me, is not worthy of me. He that findeth his life shall lose it: and he that loseth his life for my sake shall find it.” (Matthew 10:34-39)

Now I’m not going to go all in depth on this because everyone’s situations and circumstances are different but what I will do is remind you that at the end of the day, coming separate from the world includes ungodly family members. And this seems to be where a lot of us either compromise or draw the line because quite frankly, we ourselves are still worldly or we’re COWARDS and are ashamed of the gospel. And I know because this was something that I struggled with. I didn’t want to keep coming off as a “know it all” or offend. But the truth is what it is and besides, I  was sick and tired of my spirit being vexed after interacting with certain family members.

I’ve learned that family can be a MAJOR hindrance to your relationship with the Lord, especially those who claim to be Christians and/or are church goers. They may have a form of godliness but their carnal mindsets (and ungodly lifestyles!) deny the power thereof. FROM SUCH TURN AWAY! And if you want to make your close friends and family members an exception to the rules, then you have a bigger problem on your hands and it’s called idolatry.

How can two walk together lest they agree? It doesn’t matter if they’re your mother or your brothers if they don’t believe what you believe (meaning what  is taught in the Bible). As Christians we should be following the examples of Jesus Christ and he considered his family to be those who DO the will of his Father.

As Jesus was speaking to the crowd, his mother and brothers stood outside, asking to speak to him. Someone told Jesus, “Your mother and your brothers are standing outside, and they want to speak to you.” Jesus asked, “Who is my mother? Who are my brothers?” Then he pointed to his disciples and said, “Look, these are my mother and brothers. Anyone who does the will of my Father in heaven is my brother and sister and mother!” (Matthew 12:46-50)

So don’t let anyone make you feel guilty about leaving your family behind. Remember when Jesus told a disciple who wanted to care for his father first to let the dead bury the dead (Matthew 8:18-22). We have to leave our civilian affairs behind. Like those enlisted in the military, we belong to the kingdom of God now! Family will try to own you and demand your loyalty. Even over what is fair, and what is right or what is TRUE.

So, we have to make sure that our identity is in Jesus Christ, and not in our families or in anything else. Sever those ties!

With nothing but love, Brandi

Are you ready for the return of the Lord?

Take care, brothers, lest there be in any of you an evil, unbelieving heart, leading you to fall away from the living God. But exhort one another every day, as long as it is called “today,” that none of you may be hardened by the deceitfulness of sin. (Hebrew 3:12-13, ESV)

(Featured image provided by pexels.com)

Have you ever been doing something (whether it was good or bad) and you were just so focused that you hadn’t even realized that someone was standing right there? Well there’s this misconception that that’s how it’ll be when the Lord returns but that’s not what the scriptures teach concerning the elect.

We are told time and time again to be watchful and ready so that day doesn’t catch us off guard like that. And even though we don’t know (and we won’t know!) the day or the hour, we have been informed of all the things that will precede his arrival.

Now I don’t know if you’ve noticed but prophecy is rapidly being fulfilled. It is more than likely that we are that last generation that will experience the Lord’s second coming. And I’m not here to draw you into any end times rabbit holes.  I’m just here to remind you that we need to get ourselves together.

Many are caught up in the affairs of this world (trying to live their best lives now). While others have turned away from sound doctrine unto fables and just straight up LIES (doctrines of devils). But to those of you who still have an ear to hear, it’s the same ol’ message it’s always been—Repent for the kingdom of God is at hand.

We have been fooled by wolves (and by Hollywood!) into thinking that Jesus is passive. We’ve forgotten about the lion because we’re so busy exploiting the lamb. But make no mistake about it, sin and worldliness are NOT, have never been and will never be acceptable to God the Father or His son, Jesus Christ. WE HAVE TO TURN FROM OUR WAYS, and we have to abandon this world’s satanic systems and customs. As well as any idols which can be anything that we love, trust and/or esteem more than God.

The bible is clear. So beware of all these unbelieving Christians scoffing at holiness as if righteousness (living right, according to God’s standards) is impossible or better yet, optional. DON’T FALL AWAY.  Be watchful AND PRAY as you fix your minds, hearts and lives on the Lord. He’s coming back, REAL SOON.

I love you guys,
Brandi Collins

Do this, knowing that this is a critical time. It is already the hour for you to awaken from your sleep [of spiritual complacency]; for our salvation is nearer to us now than when we first believed [in Christ]. (Romans 13:11, AMP)

3 Tips on making a godly marriage work

So yesterday was my anniversary and in honor of us entering into our 4th year of marriage, I thought it would be fun (and helpful!) to share 3 things that have strengthened our relationship.

1. Being selfless

My husband and I have both come to the knowledge and understanding of the Lord Jesus Christ. So self denial (denying the flesh) has been essential to every part of our lives, including (or especially!) our marriage. We are ALL selfish and self absorbed by nature but unfortunately most of us don’t even realize that we are and have always been until we get married. So, with that being said, my first tip is to put your spouse’s needs above your own without conditions and without any expectations.

2. Communication

Now my husband and I talk and have always talked about any and EVERYTHING, to the point where we had to repent and start holding each other accountable for idle conversations and just straight up gossiping. But at the end of the day, we have to express ourselves in order to make sure that we are on the same page (or at least working toward the same things). Also, we have to not only acknowledge but HONOR the fact that men and women usually communicate in different ways.

3. Integrity

There is so much peace and joy in the home and in the marriage when you and your spouse are trustworthy. And this doesn’t just happen because you’re in love. You have to fear the Lord and walk in His ways first.

4. Encouragement (A bonus from my husband)

As I ran through an overview of this post with my husband, he told me to mention how it is also important to allow your spouse time to grow. Looking back,  I can’t even believe that my husband and I hooked up because we are nothing like the people we once were.

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This is a witness to the fact that God can and will change those who are willing. And it only gets better as you’re continuously being refined and conformed to the likeness of Christ. So basically, what he’s saying is, let God be God (and let satan be satan!). Our jobs as wives are to HELP not accuse or hinder our husbands.

So, I hope that you consider this post and if you have any tips on a healthy marriage please let us know!

Much love, Brandi