Welcome to my blog!

 I am so EXCITED you are here!!  

Please join me:


I will be offering a series of transformational insights that GOD has helped and challenged me with.  

For you teens & young ladies, I have NOT forgotten my teen, college, and single years! 

I remember how tough and uncertain those seasons were. 

I'm here to offer support as 

 you're going into that season, 

or coming out of that season!

For all I know, you may be sitting smack dabb in the middle of that season & wondering how you even got there!!

Choosing to follow God has been my greatest of blessings, and yet my largest of challenges.

I never knew how much I needed HIM, until I really realized I needed HIM! 

There HE was, just being there dripping in GRACE and MERCY for a sinner like me!  My sins led Jesus to the cross, but HIS blood continually cleanses me, as long as I am ABIDING with HIM...and yes I am so very THANKFUL!!  

I will be sharing bits and pieces of myself and how God  continues transforming me with HIS amazing power!  

WE  will deal with a myriad of issues, struggles, disappointments, joys, and everything in between.  

I am a firm believer in encouragement & teamwork.

It has often been said, "By people we are torn apart & by people we are put back together!"

...But God is the ULTIMATE fulfiller to the many pieces in our puzzle. 

HE is truly ALL we NEED!

I am still a work in progress, and don't know everything, nor have I arrived spiritually.  I will NOT be writing  from foolish pride or arrogance.  

My sincere desire is to share, encourage, challenge, & help heal the hearts of women & girls everywhere!!

WE all need or are looking for something to complete us, fill us, or move us!

Choose now, to commit, to being encouraged, challenged, & motivated to either start, or continue on this journey of TRANSFORMATION 

with me, and many others, who will love themselves and their Creator enough to seek change & find answers to life's challenges!

Let's do this TOGETHER!!


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​Transform with Travena​​​

It is here where we will transform together, decide to take this journey with me!

(Thursday Ladies' Transformation) 

"Truth & Love Made Me Do It!"

August 22, 2017

"...If ye continue in my word, then ye are my disciples indeed; And ye shall know the  TRUTH, and the  TRUTH shall make you FREE."                     John 8:32 KJV


Before I knew HIM:


All I knew, was that I wanted to be FREE!!

Life seemed to have derailed me.  Life was pulling at me, snarling at me, damaging me, bewildering me; confusing me, tiring me, ailing me, hurting me, frustrating me, and harming me!!!


I was tired of feeling uncertain, anxious, sad, and lonely.  I was caught like a hamster on a wheel, going around & around.

Why?  

Because that's what everyone else was doing, but I really wanted to  STOP, I  just didn't know how!  All I knew, was that life was consuming me, and I felt as if I had nothing really significant and solid to hold onto.


Sure, I knew who God was, and that He was in heaven, but I didn't truly know this illusive being.  

I didn't know if He was pleased with me, or mad at me!

 I didn't know how to connect with HIM!

 I thought I did, through prayer...right?

I wondered if He cared about me?  I wondered if He thought of me?  I wondered if he knew me? 

I wondered in the grand scheme of things, if He was there to just pounce on me, or leave me wandering like a thirsty person lingering lost in the desert.  

I wondered so many things!  

Did He know how hurt I was when my mother died, did he care?  I wondered if he were mad at me, when He took my brother. 

I wondered, how I could get to know Him, and if He wanted to know me.

I had so many questions, and felt somewhat disrespectfully guilty for entertaining my thoughts. 


"Do not judge me by my successes, judge me by how many times I fell down and got back up again."

                                                - Nelson Mandela



Learning to know Him:


I am often judged falsely by others.  Many assume if you have written a book, that you must have it "all together".  Many perceive that your life "must be perfect" as you serve Jesus.   Many view you as their guide for all things godly, because "you really seem to be so in love with Him."

  

This judgement of me is boggus and far from the truth.  


Yes, I do LOVE Jesus with a full & complete heart!! 

Yes, my heart swells with excitement to speak of HIM!!  

Yes, I now have the tools to serve HIM, but it was not always that way!!


NO, I am NOT perfect!   Let me repeat, I AM NOT PERFECT, nor have I ARRIVED spiritually!!

 

I cry when people hurt me.  I feel sad when my prayers aren't answered.  I get anxious when I'm in a storm, and satan looms in my thoughts. 

I feel pain when I sin against God.  

 

I am just Travena, a girl who wanted to know who GOD really is. 

I am Human.  I am authentic.  I am in disarray at times!  My desire to be a godly wife and mother have moments of sheer failure. 


I wanted to know that He was near...me.   No, I still don't have EVERYTHING in my life all together, nor will I!


I just didn't one day decide to write a book or speak to women & girls about Jesus.  

This life I live, right now, was chosen for me by God. 

As He was preparing me for this season, He drenched me in trials & struggles I am living through even now.   

He showed me how futile and fragile my life is, through a complicated & difficult pregnancy.  I had no other recourse but to TRUST &  OBEY. 

 I have stumbled before my enemies, but HE lifted me and sat me upon the ROCK that was higher than I.  

He has tested my faithfulness, as He did Abraham, through trials of health, finances, my son, my husband, family, and friends.  


"Yea, and all that will live godly in Christ Jesus shall suffer persecution."  

                                                      2 Timothy 3:12


When a christian chooses to consistently and faithfully follow GOD, it is then Satan decides to declare war on YOU!!  


Trials are not optional, they are coming, it's just a matter of WHEN?


Satan maneuvers, plans, and plots while moving people to create situations to cause us to drift, slip and fall.  


"And the Lord said, Simon, Simon, behold, Satan hath desired to have you, that he may sift you as wheat.  But I have prayed for thee, that thy faith fail not:  and when thou art converted, strengthen thy brethren."  

                                              Luke 22:31-32



Satan would have killed me, had it not been for the prayers of Jesus.  As I have persevered I am able to tell others my story, so they will be encouraged! 


This journey of mine, has not been a bed of roses, nor a walk in the park.  I have experienced loss, hurt, anguish, frustration and many times of sadness because of evil people being used by satan to attempt to cause me harm.  I have made bad choices and learned to live with them.   


I didn't land here overnight!  

God is NOT finished with me yet!

I  didn't initially love the Bible, nor did I enjoy reading it.  I didn't want to go back to service a second time on Sunday.  

I did not want to complete all of the lessons in my new converts class.

I did not want to be at Bible Class on Wednesday night, after a hard day of work. 

I don't want to always be nice to people, who are deliberately unkind to me.  I don't want to always pray for my enemies. 

I don't want to always have to choose my words wisely. 

I don't always want to let another person in front of me at the grocery store.  

"Then Jesus told his disciples, "If anyone would come after me, let him deny himself and take up his cross and follow me."

                                             Matthew 16:24


 ...but because of my "on purpose" study, prayer, & alone time with God, He continues to rescue me from my own selfish desires.  He is ever lifting me and pushing me toward His will, and not my own.   He delivers, comforts, strengthens, and fortifies me toward higher ground!!


I owe Jesus my life!  I choose to obey Him, follow Him, Trust Him, because he has been so good to me.  I Trust His promises, because He has never lied to me.  He has proven is LOVE over and over to me.  He has been patient through HIS grace and mercy to save me!


I realize HE has my best interest!


   "For I know the plans I have for you, declares the LORD, plans for welfare and not for evil, to give you a future and a hope."   

                                              Jeremiah 10:23 ESV



  • I understand  my life is no longer mine and that self denial leads to increased faith.  Self denial also increases my ability to say "yes" to God and "NO" to Satan!!
  • I have been lifted, renewed, & motivated because of His word... His truth.  I now know who my real enemy is! 


"Consider it pure joy, my brothers and sisters, whenever you face trials of many kinds, because you know that the testing of your faith produces perseverance."  

                                                         James 1:2-3


Decide right now to STOP believing lies from Satan!!


  • I never have to feel unworthy, lost, confused, desolate, frustrated, hurt or sad.  
  • I 've learned to NOT wallow in self pity, pride, or anger.  


"Let this mind be in you, which was also in Christ Jesus..."  

                                       Philippians 2:5


 I am determined with all that is within me to  make Heaven my home, by using this blog to enrich the lives of the lost, and to be there in the lives of women & girls, so we all can land safely home.  

I WILL KEEP choosing HIM every day!  

God and His word is my TRUTH! 

His words are the very FOUNDATION of my life.  


"Your word is a lamp to my feet And a light to my path." 

                                                   Psalm 119:105



TRANSFORMATION: 


For all of those searching for truth; For all of those struggling to hold onto truth; For all of those questioning the TRUTH....


 It is this TRUTH that allows us FREEDOM,

HONESTY  and GROWTH!!


Jesus Christ is the greatest & only being that stood  CONSISTENTLY  for  TRUTH!


He told the TRUTH in LOVE to all people; even though it was not popular.  He suffered ridicule and many times of danger, because HE stood for TRUTH!

I am a christian today, because of His TRUTH!  

It is because of His TRUTH, I can conquer error with the word of GOD.!

His TRUTH gives me the wisdom to look sin in the face and repent!

His TRUTH gives me the POWER to deny myself & follow HIM!

His TRUTH creates in me a clean HEART and renews a right spirit within me!

His TRUTH makes my burdens lighter & my FAITH stronger!

His TRUTH helps me to have a forgiving spirit, which enables me to PRAY for my ENEMIES.

His TRUTH gives me the LOVE and COURAGE to Speak up when subtle liberalism is being imposed on CHRIST Church.

His TRUTH gives me the nerve & love to talk with the accused and not gossip behind their back.  

His TRUTH helps me to choose to LOVE Him through obedience each day.  

His TRUTH gives me HOPE, as RUMORS of DEFAMATION swirl to hinder my CHARACTER amongst the hearts of those who know me.

His TRUTH gives me STRENGTH to remain FAITHFUL, when all others are drifting away. 

His TRUTH gives me the STAMINA to take up my bed and WALK.  

His TRUTH helps me to look death in the face and know where I will spend eternity.

His TRUTH helps me to know that HE is the RULER, CREATOR, & JUDGE of ALL.

His TRUTH reaffirms my FAITH in HIS ability & POWER to save ones soul from the fire.  


A friend shared this scripture with me:


   "From henceforth let no man TROUBLE me:  for I bear in my body the marks of the Lord Jesus."

                                                  Galatians 6:17

I will stand for TRUTH as long as I stay faithful to GOD!  No  man, situation, or circumstance, can take away my certainty of God's TRUTH.  

The words of GOD will Stand Forever!  His TRUTH is eternal.  

I will bare the marks of JESUS as I am commanded to STAND on HIS word only,

Everything else is sinking sand.

I will rest in the certainity of HEAVEN being my ETERNAL home, not made with hands.  

I look forward to the day when I see the face of GOD, and all those who look forward to HIS appearing!!


"If ye then be risen with Christ, seek those things which are above, where Christ sitteth on the right hand of GOD.  Set your affection on things above, not on things on the earth.  For ye are dead, and your life is hid with Christ in GOD.  When Christ, who is our life, shall appear, then shall  ye appear with HIM in glory."

                                                  Colossians  3:1 -4     



TRANSFORMATION: 

  • Hold onto TRUTH
  • Grow in TRUTH
  • Live in TRUTH
  • Search for TRUTH from the scriptures
  • Drink down  TRUTH
  • Ask GOD to help you want to LOVE, ADMIRE & OBEY TRUTH
  •  STAY in TRUTH
  • RELISH in TRUTH

Please know that TRUTH & LOVE will build you into what God has purposed for you.  

When you feel yourself slipping, MOVE toward TRUTH, as you find a quiet spot to saturate yourself with GOd and his beautiful word.  


Love, 

Travena​



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(Teen Transformation Tuesday)

"When You Think He's The One!"

August 20, 2017  

I love fall, with its welcomed colors of orange golden hues &  brisk cool air.  You can just smell the hint of a new season subtle, and slowly notifying us that change is coming!

By early morning, dew has settled on wet leaves, and the thought of grabbing my favorite sweater due to the chill, in God's beautiful morning breathes life into me as I begin my day.

The newness that the change of season brings makes me happy inside.


Fall reminds me of many fond memories from my young adult single days.  On this particular fall day, I was preparing for Sunday morning worship. As I ran from the shower in my big fat terry cloth robe, to keep from the crisp yet cold air that billowed through our house.


 I was excited to pull my favorite blue fall suit from my closet.  This suit had meaning, it was special, it was the one I had worn in a family picture of just me and my brother.  The few times I wore it, reminded me of him and moments of us laughing and smiling together before the camera. It was the last picture we would take together before he passed.  

I heard my roommate "Mom" yell from the kitchen, "Little girl, are you up and about ready to go?!  Mom knew I hated mornings, regardless of the day of the week.  I was just not a morning person.  I hesitantly responded, "Yes, Mom, I'm about ready!" She replied, with her usual sweet fondness of me, "Just wanted to make sure you were about ready to go, because I'm leaving a little earlier this morning."  

Mom was always on time for everything, "better to be ten minutes early, than ten minutes late," she'd say.

Shortly thereafter, I left home to participate in worshipping my Lord.  I've always LOVED Sunday's and knowing I can attend Bible class and worship gives me a renewed sense of purpose and planning.


This particular Sunday as I was sitting in Bible class, there was a new face in our class.  He was very tall, dressed in a nice navy suit, and making some interesting Bible based comments.  An hour later, class dismissed and people were scattering to take bathroom breaks, greet and hug one another before worship was to begin.  


At the end of the sermon, our Minister welcomed our visitors and the tall gentleman, I had listened to in class stood up as a visitor.  As worship ended, I dispersed to chat and fellowship with my church family.   I eventually headed toward the exit door.  Our Minister was standing by the door with the tall gentleman and said, "Travena, before you go, I'd like for you to meet my new friend." We shook hands and I welcomed him to our congregation.  While we were speaking we slowly began to walk outside, and that's when he asked for my number.   He was very nice and polite.  I willingly gave him my number and permission to call me.  


To make a long story short, he called many times and we went out on a date a few weeks later.  My heart reveled in my attraction for this tall christian gentleman.  

Little did I know he would become a part of my life for the next five years.  I was happy being single, and welcomed the idea of dating.  As a new babe in Christ he helped me grow spiritually. He had grown up in the church; whereas I was baptized at 21.  Conversations with him were intriguing and full of godly wisdom.  I hung on every word he shared with me about the Bible and living as a christian.  I thought early in our relationship that I had been blessed beyond measure.  He was faithful,  a constant server in his congregation, college educated, and seemed rather fond of me.  

As our dating years progressed and the newness settled, at times he seemed to become less interested in consistently coming to see me, or taking me on a date.  I would bravely speak to him about it and he would blame his preoccupation with work, being there for his Dad, and eventually going back to school.  He went about his life and I went about mine.  I had a demanding job in the medical field, and was enjoying my singlehood & serving the Lord through teaching; as well as hanging out with my church family  


His time spent with me had to be based upon his schedule, & I would  drop any plans I had when he wanted to go out.  Our Bible study time together started out as consistent, but later it became more sporadic.  We would pray together initially, and then I noticed, he no longer wanted to pray together.  


I prayed about it, assuming I may have done something wrong.   I asked my sister what she thought, and others over time began to say things like, "He's not the one for you!  "You've been dating for awhile, does he have commitment issues?"

I had a personal motto I compiled before I started dating as a new christian:  

1)  Always pray and have Bible study with the person you're dating 

2)  Stay prayerful, during my season of dating: asking God to reveal whether or not this person is someone I should or should not be with.   

3)  Pray to have a continual receptive heart in the above, so my eyes remain open & not my emotions


Although we dated for five years, and I felt at times, he was the rich man and I was the beggar. Just attempting to be satisfied with crumbs from his table.  God helped me to grow tired of this "so-called" relationship and I thankfully decided to end it!  I felt so free and light.  As if a huge boulder had been lifted.  I was able to breathe fresh new air and it felt really good.  

I didn't understand how trapped I had started to feel waiting.  Waiting for him to come around; waiting for him to call; waiting for him to pop the question.  In this season of my life, I learned to stop waiting.

I allowed God to fill me with His word.  I learned to serve others through many works in the church.  I learned to enjoy my new life as a new christian, and whether or not he decided to come around was irrelevant.  You see, during this season I learned to love God bigger and greater.  I learned to pray to Him with deepness and meaning.  I learned what to ask Him for and to wait for His answer.  I learned about me.

A favorite passage I would quote in my private prayers was from Psalm 139:23 "Search me O, God and know my heart, try me and know my thoughts, and see if there be any wicked way in me and lead me in the way everlasting."

I had given so much of my time, effort, friendship, and hope to that relationship which had drained me emotionally.  


I realized during his unannounced hiatus that I didn't need to be in a relationship that failed to treat me as his sister-in-Christ.  

The scriptures in Galatians 6:10, command us "As we have therefore opportunity, let us do good unto all men; especially unto them who are of the household of faith."  I was to be preferred and treated with kindness.

  

We are also advised in Romans 14:13 "...that no man put a stumblingblock or an occasion to fall in his brother's way." 

I learned that good christian relationships don't hurt.  To quote my sister, "Relationships don't hurt, if you're more hurt than you are happy, then it's time to move on."


I love my church family with a pure heart.  When I love you I really love you.  I learned that just because a person is a Christian does not mean they will always do and say the right thing, (I don't) every time, but being a faithful christian does mean that we answer to God for EVERYTHING we do.  We need to be careful of what we are doing, how we are treating others, and personally judge our motive for what we do or don't do.  


I hold NO bitterness or animosity toward him, because just as I told him,  "I refuse to lose my soul over you, anyone, or anything." 


Today and everyday, I thank God for hearing his voice through others during this season.   

I thank God for answering my prayers for clarity in realizing he was NOT the ONE He had for me!

I thank God for the courage & love to speak with him; while treating him as my brother-in-christ, as I chose to end our relationship.  

God answered and delivered me.  

I mention in my book  "Traveling Toward Transformation"  of how Satan sent me two gifts prior to my engagement to Will.

 

The first gift was a phone call during the Thanksgiving holiday from him (my ex), and a month earlier a phone call from my college boyfriend (who kept an old phone number of a relative and much to my surprise found me).  

Satan likes to give unexpected subtle gifts that often catch us off guard.  He uses people, creates situations, and attempts to derail our thoughts toward circumstances that he feels will keep us from staying focused on God & what He has best for us.  

In his futile attempt to derail me, he failed miserably.  I told my former college boyfriend to never call me again, unless he was calling to ask for a Bible class or to inform me he was getting baptized.  The recent ex-boyfriend, was advised not to call me again, because I was in a serious relationship that would likely lead to an engagement.  Calling me was disrespectful to him  and to me.

  

I took so much from that relationship:

  •  How I did NOT want to be treated!
  • How I did not want to be IGNORED!
  • How I did not want to be someones second or even third choice
  • How I would not be taken for granted, but RESPECTED and VALUED
  • How I would not settle for just anyone
  • How I would stay prayerful, if I decided to date again.
  • How I would continue to saturate my life with God

I must say, after those five years of a debacle, I really didn't want to date for a while and had pondered with becoming a missionary on foreign soil.  I had desired to do that for many years and felt this would be good timing, (before you think that was drastic) but God had other plans.  Shortly after our breakup, God working in my favor, introduced me during a single's get together to this intelligent young man; with whom I had grown fond of his Father.  He had been away at college earning a degree.  

He made me laugh.  He lightened my serious side. He would eventually become one of my dearest friends.

There were so many things I learned from him: 

  • He cared for my soul
  • He loved to make me smile
  • He would confront me in my bad behavior
  • He stopped by to bring me my favorite chicken salad, for no reason at all
  • He cared about my thoughts, my dreams, my goals
  • He wanted to introduce me to his friends and family
  • He made me feel important and cared for
  • He was confident and secure in my love for him
  • He never asked me to do or participate in anything that would bring shame to the church or God
  • He studied and prayed with me on every date
  • He appreciated and valued me
  • He sent me flowers to work, drove to Nashville on his off days, just to surprise me and take me to lunch. 
  • He was EVERYTHING I could ever dream of or pray for in a Christian man. 
He sincerely cared for me and has continued to care for me even now.  To make a long story short.  Our "just let's be friends date"  was Halloween weekend of '98, by Christmas I knew I loved him and he loved me, by February of '99 he asked my Dad for my hand in marriage, and on June 12, 1999 we were married.  


We don't have a perfect marriage or life, but we are both committed to God first and each other second.   Our glue has been God and I really love & like him an awful lot.  We still have fun together and enjoy each other.  

I always say, however they are when you are dating them, will be how they are when you marry them. 

 

It is true 18 years later. I truly received what I saw in him years ago.  Thank God for His plan and NOT mine.  What an unhappy travesty my life would have been, had I re-opened those earlier gifts from satan.  His plan would have worked for me to have had a miserable life and marriage. 

TRANSFORMATION:

"When YOU Think He's The One, GOD knows different!"

  • NEVER settle for anything less
  • NEVER accept crumbs from the rich man's table.  You deserve better and God wants you to have better
  • NEVER close your ears to the godly voices of those around you, because they really do have your best interest at heart
  • NEVER allow someone to walk on you
  • NEVER date a taker, but date a giver
  • NEVER allow someone to pull you away from what you know to be right; even if they wear the name Christian
  • Accept your change of season with COURAGE
  • Be PREPARED to receive your blessing by allowing GOD to become your #1  and only
  • Don't expect ANYONE to be EVERYTHING you need and want, only GOD can do that
  • TRUST that GOD will see you through
  • NEVER harbor anger or bitterness, because its hard to hate someone you are praying for

Be the ROYAL, SPECIAL, VALUABLE, CHOSEN STAR that GOD created you to be! 


If TOADS come around, you'll know who NOT to kiss!!!


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"I NEVER knew how STRONG I was, until I had to FORGIVE someone who wasn't sorry, and accept an apology I never received."            - Unknown

September 26, 2017

As I lay under this magnificent tree, with a slight gentle breeze touching my face and fall leaves falling over my arms.  I look up toward her and witness this magnificent tree as a pillar of strength; with the God given ability to withstand the many seasons of change.  I feel her roots firmly planted in the earth's surface.  I see her capacity to offer shade and quiet to all those who care to take in her beauty.  I see an enduring emblem of survival and stamina.  I see her as consistent, brave, and sure.  She is the magnificently beautiful Oak Tree.  


No one wants to be hurt!  No one wants to be the target of someone's evil plan!  No one wants to be aggravated, uninvited, excluded, or mistreated...no one!  

Yet, at times we may find ourselves walking and living in all of this exclusion, evil, negativity and hatefulness!  


What must we do?  What can we do?  When you know you have been the victim of another's planning & plotting of your very demise; it is not easy to understand or accept.  


FORGIVENESS such an unused and fearful word to the majority of us.  What is FORGIVENESS?  

"the action or process of  forgiving or being forgiven."  

Webster gives this definition:  "To stop feeling anger toward (someone who has done something wrong); to stop blaming (someone); to stop feeling anger about (something); to forgive someone for (something wrong)."


How do you STOP feeling some kind of way toward someone, whom you know deliberately planned and plotted to do EVIL and HARM toward you and those you love?  


As a genuine christian FORGIVENESS has always been something I've experienced from God.  He forgives me on a daily basis, as I repent.  My thankfulness for HIS forgiveness has not halted me in forgiving others; regardless of their motive toward me or others. 


However this most recent maliciousness toward my family and those I love, has been a challenge. This challenge is one that I am prayerfully & convicted toward learning from.  


Matthew 6:14-15  ESV  

"For if you forgive others their trespasses, your heavenly Father will also forgive you, but if you do not forgive others their trespasses, neither will your Father forgive your trespasses."  


     I need FORGIVENESS! I choose NOT to withhold it from others! 


FORGIVENESS from GOD is conditional on whether or not I choose to forgive others.  I know that I need forgiveness...ALWAYS.  Who would I be to withhold forgiveness from another and thus lose my soul?  


My faith was tested in most recent months.

I can truly say, as I look over all that has happened, I have been tested beyond anything I could have ever thought possible, because of the intentional and calculated motive of another.  


The inflicted pain and sorrow deposited upon the lives of me and my family have been the hardest of pills to swallow; because it was inflicted by the very ones who call themselves christians.  


My futile and declining ability to wrap my brain around the purposeful evil of people has rendered me speechless.  I am reminded, that these individuals have been taught & obeyed the same truth; yet continue to walk toward the evil that plagues their very life.  


To say it breaks my heart is an understatement.  As I write this, I still find it very hard to grasp the profoundly pernicious and vile behavior of those who claim to love Jesus!


Then, I look at myself, and all of the times I have sinned & fallen short.  Amidst all of these thoughts, I personally have NOT sought to consciously and intentionally hurt my spiritual family, through calculated plotting and maneuvering.  

You see, when you truly LOVE God, you don't set out to hurt or damage another, because of your own selfish ungodliness.  You seek to teach through example of the LOVE you are experiencing through Jesus! 


My efforts are never to DIVIDE, but to REUNITE 

souls toward GOD!  I am NOT perfect, but I would not set out to presumptuously hinder the soul of another.


Galatians 4:16

"Have I then become your enemy by telling you the truth?"


God's TRUTH saves and RECONCILES man back to GOD!  It's not ME, but GOD speaking through me!  This is LOVE not HATE!


It is God's TRUTH that moves to CONFRONT, so one's  soul is NOT lost for eternity. 


When we boldly decide to practice sin on the continuum, we HINDER our INFLUENCE and CRUCIFY Jesus all over again.  


Romans 6:1-4

"What shall we say then?  Are we to continue in sin that grace may abound?  By no means!  How can we (christians) who died to sin still live in it?  Do you know not that all of us "who have been baptized into His death? we were buried therefore with Him by baptism into death, in order that, just as Christ was raised from the dead by the glory of the Father, we too might walk in newness of life."  


As a "new christian" we are to walk toward a new life in Christ, not grieving the Holy Spirit through deliberate disobedience.  This means we are no longer allowed to do, or say whatever we want.  All that I do must meet God's approval & if it does NOT, I must still choose HIS way and NOT my own.  


2 Corinthians 3:2

"You yourselves are our letter of recommendation, written on our hearts to be known and read by all."  

People rather see a life lived in fellowship with God, than lifeless words spoken.  


Galatians 6:10

"So then as we have opportunity, let us do good to everyone, and especially to those who are of the household of faith."  


This passage let's me know that I am to do good to all men, but most specifically to my church family first.  This means correction for when one has fallen away from God.  


TRANSFORMATION:  


"I never knew how strong I was until I had to forgive someone who wasn't sorry, and accept an apology I never received."  


  • Many will do wrong to you and never acknowledge their wrongdoing.  
  • Many will speak to you with a handshake and smile while never offering an apology. 
  •  Many will expect you to be a doormat without ever offering you an explanation for their behavior. 
  • Many will see their evil plan as merely doing what was necessary to secure their future. 
  • Many will never ever apologize.  


Whenever I am wrestling with something I always go to the Bible for answers.  I seek God fervently in prayer.  My goal and prayer is to do all that God commands of me and to ultimately go to heaven.    Allow me to share a passage that is helping me during this time of trial:


 Jesus clearly states how to deal with a brother or sister in the church who is consistently walking in disobedience.

  Let's look at Matthew 18:15


"If your brother sins against you, go and tell him his fault, between you and him alone.  (Just the two of you) If he listens to you, you have gained your brother.  But if he does not listen (continues to live in sin) take one or two others along with you, that every charge may be established.  By the evidence of two or three witnesses.  If he refuses to listen to them (those two or three) tell it to the church.  And if he refuses to listen even to the church, let him be to you as a Gentile and a tax collector (you withdraw from that person in love, encouraging them to repent as you see them)."


Unfortunately, we had to withdraw ourselves from these individuals because of their refusal to acknowledge their sin and repent.    We don't hate them, but because we love their soul, we have chosen to obey God in prayerful hope that repentance will occur.  


The Bible has the answer for EVERYTHING, if we will only adhere to it.  Obedience must be ABOVE all that we THINK, FEEL, and DESIRE


GOD saw, heard, witnessed, and was saddened by the wicked and sinful choices of HIS children against His own children.  VENGEANCE is HIS, not mine.  HE does NOT need my help or evil thoughts.  HE will repay them for their wrong doing and refusal to repent; in HIS time.  


I will choose not to wallow in it; be overtaken by it; tripped by it, or hurt by it.


Romans 12:9-10; 14,16-21  ESV

"Let Love be genuine.  Abhor (hate) that which is evil; hold fast to what is good.  Love one another with brotherly affection.  Bless those who persecute you; bless and do not curse them.  Live in harmony with one another.  Never be wise in your own sight. Repay no one evil for evil, but give thought to do what is honorable in the sight of all.  If possible, so far as it depends on you, live peaceably with all.  Beloved, NEVER avenge yourselves, but leave it to the wrath of GOD, for it is written, VENGEANCE is MINE, I will REPAY says the LORD.  To the contrary, if your enemy is hungry feed him, if he is thirsty, give him something to drink, for by so doing you will heap coals on his head.  Do NOT be overcome by evil, but overcome evil with good."    




MY PERSONAL LETTER TO SATAN: 


  • You expected me to be OVERCOME by the EVIL done to me and my family, but your little plan to use God's own people against His own people FAILED to work!
  • You thought you would DESTROY my family by this evil, but you FAILED again!
  • You thought you could come into my thoughts with hurt and anguish;  hoping I would give in and give up, but your planned FAILED once again!
  • You thought I would retaliate in anger against those, you used to HURT me, but you FAILED to keep me under your foot!
  • You thought I wanted to be accepted by evil people, so you worked in them to neglect  and hate me, but your planned FAILED again!
  • You thought I would still be harboring anger, bitterness, and wrath, but you FAILED to accept how much I truly LOVE my Father in Heaven.  You FAILED again!
  • Satan, you see I hate you!!  You must've forgotten that!  I DON'T hate God's people! I LOVE each of them & want them to REPENT, but you want them lost and they don't see it!  You FAILED with me...again!!
  • You thought having them neglect to love me as their sister would cause me to GIVE up and be weakened.  You failed again!
  • You thought persecution would cause me to STUMBLE and FALL.  You forgot that God is holding me UP with his mighty HAND!  You FAILED again!!
  • You thought I TRUSTED in MAN, but you failed to realize that GOD is my Strength my HELP & REFUGE in times of TROUBLE!  You FAILED again!
  • You wanted me to be QUIET and not CONFRONT wrongdoing.  You should've remembered GOD does NOT allow me to be quiet in the midst of SIN!  You FAILED again!!
  • You forgot I will NOT lose my soul over ANYONE or ANYTHING!! NOTHING is worth my soul!! You FAILED again!!
Satan, you are a WORTHLESS, HOPELESS, MISERABLE, EVIL, LIAR!! Everything God told me about you is TRUE.  

The next time you seek to devour me and my family, be ready for us to WIN against your devices, because we serve a  GOD in Heaven who is more POWERFUL than any man or evil you could use against us!!  


FOR ALL OF US


Be encouraged to STAND against SATAN through practicing FORGIVENESS; even when you feel it may be the HARDEST thing you have ever tried to do.  Practice FORGIVENESS even when they never say their sorry!   Don't let your HURT be so great that you react and allow satan to win against you. 

I Know that satan uses people and creates circumstances to cause us to DRIFT and become agitated.  Move yourself AWAY from people who choose to walk with satan.  Let us ALL strive daily to WALK with GOD and LIVE like HIM.  STRENGTH comes from SATURATING ourselves in HIS word.  Take solace in HIS word and there will be NOTHING to stop us!!  JESUS went through even MORE than us.  HE made it and so CAN we!!!


Love

Travena 



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Random Days of Thankfulness!!

An upcoming random series of THANKFULNESS and encouragement! 

 I will be presenting interviews with various people that have blessed my life and I am certain will bless yours.  

Join me in this Transformational Thankfulness series and be blessed!!  

The Power of an Unexpected Friendship!

November 27, 2017

"My command is this:  Love each other as I have loved you.  Greater love has no one than this:

to lay down ones's life for one's friends."  

       John 15: 12-13


Have you ever met someone and felt as if you've known them forever?  Have you ever experienced the love of God through one of His children?  If you answered yes to any of these questions, then continue reading. 


I have been blessed in the meeting of many people over the last 27 years.  I consider it a rare and godly find when I meet someone for the first time and we connect on a spiritual level.


        "Therefore, as God's chosen people, holy and dearly loved, clothe yourselves in compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness, and patience."

  Colossians 3:12


Unbeknownst to me, losing my Mother at an early age seem to keep me in search of the very thing I had lost.  My  natural gravitation toward golden women in the church, with a sincere desire to sit at the wisdom of their feet has always been a blessing to me.  


I was blessed, to be asked to speak at the Waukegan Church of Christ in Illinois earlier in the spring of this year.  I remember the call received from Sis Sandra Atwater and little  did I know that God was forging a lifelong friendship of two kindred spirits.  Two ladies who love God, and consider it an honor to teach women about God.  Two ladies that are both Authors.  Two ladies who love God tremendously.  


The above picture is of me and my dear friend, Sister Sandra Atwater, and boy do I love this woman!!  

She is spunky, loving, kind, and one who will encourage you toward growth and spiritual maturity.  I am reminded of Naomi and Ruth, as I enjoy being in her presence, holding her hand, posing for a picture, speaking with her via phone, or just listening to the little moments of her day.  


I have been blessed by God in having her as my friend and mentor.  As I traveled to Illinois, it was her voice that was searching for me at the airport.  It was her love that picked me up from my hotel and offered her hospitality.  Her love personally arranged my visit, travel, and accommodations, to have me as their Guest Speaker for their Ladies Day.  I thank the women of the North Shore C of C for their beautiful hospitality! 

We had spoken often via phone and I was finally able to meet the Lady I had grown to instantly love.   Her fresh beautiful & kind face met me with a hug  & the most gracious smile at the airport. 


She treated me as if I were her own daughter.  To watch her work in God's kingdom was a rare find.  She has this way of influencing you to work for the Lord.  First you see her doing it and you think,  "I can do that!"


    Sister Sandra Atwater is:  

Kind

Loving

Talented 

Giving

Friendly

A Leader

A Mother

Wife

Author

Teacher

Loves God


Sister Sandra truly loves me and I know it, because I have experienced it first hand.  

My life has been blessed by knowing this beautiful christian woman.  When I think of her an instant smile comes across my face and precious memories  of conversations flood my spirit.

The bond we share as Sisters-In-Christ comes only from knowing and loving God.  I always say, "she must really love God, because she truly loves me!"


My prayer is that, as we are blessed to have a godly christian women come into your life, that you will recognize it and be thankful for it.  

That you will listen to her advice and her experiences to gain wisdom and insight. 


Our friendship was unexpected and we met because of my book.  God has the providential and unique way of giving us what we need, just when we need it the most.

She has encouraged my walk with Jesus.  Her prayers have lifted me.   I am grateful to God for having our paths cross. 

Her friendship & love has enriched and blessed me.


Thank you for loving me.  Thank you for being a warm and welcomed christian example of serving the Lord with gladness.  Thanks for being genuine and authentic.  Thank you Sis Sandra Atwater for being my golden star that shines so brightly within my heart.  I love you!!



Love

Travena 


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 Travena Rogan and travenarogan.com, 2017​

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