Updated: Feb 3
Have you ever felt stuck?
Are you stuck in certain emotions, habits, and negative behaviors?
Over the last decade, I've realized that I have the same behavior and unwanted outcome in so many areas of my life. Can anyone relate?
Let me take you on a journey of my childhood. I was born as a Hungarian girl in Szovata, Romania, under communism, where Ceausescu was the dictator.
Just imagine everybody you would see looks unhappy, oppressed, and overworked. The city I was raised in was tiny.
Approximately 3000 people, with 95% of the population being Hungarian, are just like us. But we were hated and persecuted by the Romanian government.
I recall going to the grocery store once a month to pick up the assigned amount of sugar, flour, and essential food that the government allowed for each family. We couldn't just go to the store and buy food, candy, or toys.
We were given just enough items to survive, and we had to grow the rest.
My parents were handymen, who painted houses, churches, etc., and my grandparents had a farm out in the country—barns filled with horses, cows, pigs, chickens, and fields filled with vegetation to harvest.
My earliest memory was at the age of 4-yrs-old when my mom took me to my first day in kindergarten.
What a day... I was not too fond of it.
I can recall my mom pushing the door from the outside while I was pressing against it from the inside. I didn't want to stay. With many tears shed, I endured and started to like my new environment.
After a couple of days of me adjusting to this new schedule, my mom had to work (she didn't have a choice), and I had to catch the bus home a couple of times by myself.
As previously mentioned, we lived in a small town. Everybody knew everybody. So it wasn't a big deal for the grown-ups to travel by themselves, but it was a massive deal for me, as a 4-year-old child!!!
But, like anything, we get used to uncomfortable situations and adapt to them.
Here I was, feeling like a big girl, going to kindergarten Monday through Friday and going to my grandparent's farm in the country Friday after school till Saturday evening.
Oh, how much fun that was.
Imagine huge mountains; (Like Colorado Mountains, not Oklahoma Mountains lol) filled with beautiful forest. Endless fields filled with wildflowers and stunning views. That, my dear sisters, was my backyard. I loved it.
Every morning my grandpa let the horses loose, and they roamed the fields throughout the day. Then he started to milk the cows and brought me a fresh, foamy-filled glass to the breakfast table. We had home-baked bread (I can still smell it, yum), homemade jelly, cheese, and fresh vegetables.
Everything was fresh and homemade.
But all of that came with a vast price and laborious work.
The government-controlled everything, including what we farmed. Ughhh. I hate communism.
But all of that didn't affect me at that time. I lived my best life.
I was going into the forest alone, pretending to live in my fantasy land.
The humongous trees were my companions. We had deer, wild hogs, wolves, and bears outside our backyard, but none of that phased me. I felt freedom; I felt happy there. And because I was just a child, I wasn't aware of all the danger I was around.
God was always with me.
One day my grandma asked me to go and find the horses and bring them back home before dark.
The horses stayed together as a pack, so it was easy to lead them back. I had to grab one of the horses and lead it, and the rest would follow.
Well, that day, the one horse didn't want to cooperate with me and kicked me in my head. Fortunately, my cousin was out painting, and he saw it and ran to grab my grandparents. I had a little incident and had to be taken to the hospital for a concussion.
Just imagine this, me in the back of a horse wagon, being taken to the hospital. LOL. What a sight. My grandparents didn't have electricity, running water, a car, or phone in the country.
But we had God!
No matter what happened, I had a praying grandma, and she prayed all the way to the hospital.
After a couple of days in the hospital, I was back on my feet, running around in the forest.
That was my paradise, for sure.
Around a year later, I was home with my parents, and my momma was doing laundry.
Like in the tub, washing the clothes, and hanging up outside on a line. (Little House on the Prairie was my reality). Hahaha
Anyway, as the clothing was drying, my mom ironed them and gave them to me to take to my closet.
My room faced the street nearby and was located on the corner of the main road. As I stood in my room, climbing up on a chair to reach the shelf to put up my clothing, I heard a very loud sound. At that time, I witnessed a car running into the house, right into my room, and heading toward me. All I could do was scream. My mom ran into my room, totally terrified. My room looked like a war zone. Huge bricks everywhere. I remember my mom grabbing me, holding me tight, and telling me to breathe. Because I was in shock, I stopped breathing. Fear overwhelmed me! Well, the driver of this vehicle was a drunk police officer. Because he was a government official, there were no charges or even an apology.
With love and God, we overcame this attack as well.
You may wonder, Stella, why are you telling us all this?
Because I want you to see that complex, challenging times can come, but we don't have to stay stuck in them.
As a child, I could shake off the trauma quickly (or so I thought). But now, as an adult, I can see all the seeds of fear, anxiety, & feeling unprotected marked my mind and created unhealthy habits.
Like, I wouldn't go by myself in a forest, or I wouldn't ride a horse, or I didn't like to be by myself. All those seeds were sown into my subconsciousness (my thought life) very early in life. Yet, through the power of the Holy Spirit, I faced many of my fears over the years and conquered them, or still conquering some, one step at a time.
Let me fast forward a little.
In 1989 a revolution broke out in Romania. By that time, my dad had escaped Romania and gone to Germany. Only my mom, baby brother, and I were in the house. People were running all over in a panic; I didn't understand what was happening. All I can remember is that all the town's men went to the city gates and told the women to lock the doors and not let anybody in. We had knives underneath our pillows at night, and for days we did not leave the house until it was safe again.
I will tell you more in detail another time.
In 1990 we could leave Romania and joined my dad in Germany.
You talk about culture shock!!!!
Now that I had it!!! A total culture shock!
Everything looked colorful and beautiful. But the best memory I have was the stores!!!!
Oh my goodness!! The stores had unlimited supplies, everything you could imagine you could find in the store. And the best part was the shopping carts. WOW.
I never saw that before. I was allowed to push the shopping cart throughout the store and grab anything I liked (what we could afford).
It was like heaven on earth.
I thought this was the best life I could ever have dreamed of.
I spent the next 12 years of my life in Nurnberg, Germany. I quickly learned the language and helped my parents with all the paperwork and essential life skills. In the beginning, I was the only one who spoke enough to communicate, and I felt like I had become an adult.
As years passed, I started working, modeling, and traveling the world.
It was fun.
Yes, fun for the moment.
I ended up using cocaine to keep up with the party life.
Modeling and putting up a facade that wasn't me, was hard.
But I thought I had to do all that to make good money and be someone special.
After years of pretending, I fell into a deep depression. But I still never realized that it had to do with my lifestyle.
As you read my life story, you can see all the bad habits or fears created and the reason behind my actions.
But I didn't.
I worked harder, partied harder, and never wanted to commit to a serious relationship because I'd witnessed my dad cheating on my mom multiple times and abusing her mentally, emotionally, and physically. And because of that, I ran from love. I was afraid to become like my mom, and I committed never to trust a man because all men must be just like my dad.
Can you see the wrong mindsets?
Can you identify my wrong behaviors?
Now, decades later, and being born again, I can too!
It took the miracle power of God, His mercy, grace, and my surrender to be where I am today.
When I was 24, I met my husband, David, in Germany.
He asked me to marry him; I said "Yes," but I didn't mean it. I was terrified.
I didn't even know how to communicate; I barely spoke English. (The flesh doesn't need communication, LOL).
After a couple of months, David received orders to go to Fort Sill, OK.
I planned to divorce him and move on. I never wanted to come to America.
After a year had passed, David came back to Germany to visit and asked me to give this marriage a chance. I decided to go with two suitcases, check out the U.S., and then return home.
Well, our plans are not God's plans.
As many of you know, I've been here in the States for 18 years and love it.
I arrived in May 2004, and in June 2004, the Lord Jesus got a hold of me.
I had to cross the ocean to hear and respond to His call.
I gave my life to the Lord Jesus Christ, and because I had a spiritual heart transformation, I fell in love with Him. I wanted to know Him, and I desired to not just know about Him but to know Him more intimately. That's when I started to learn English by reading the Bible.
The rest of my amazing journey with Him, I will share with you another time.
The reason I am sharing my story is my desire is for you to see that with God NOTHING is ever IMPOSSIBLE!!!
As we trust Him and surrender to His leadership, He will guide us into His perfect will.
All we have to do is allow the Word to transform our lives.
This blog title is "The Power of a Transformed Mind "because the key to a successful, happy, fulfilled life is only possible through a surrendered heart and a transformed mind.
Romans 12:1-2 AMPC
"I appeal to you therefore, brethren, and beg of you in view of [all] the mercies of God, to make a decisive dedication of your bodies [presenting all your members and faculties] as a living sacrifice, holy (devoted, consecrated) and well pleasing to God, which is your reasonable (rational, intelligent) service and spiritual worship.
Do not be conformed to this world (this age), [fashioned after and adapted to its external, superficial customs], but be transformed (changed) by the [entire] renewal of your mind [by its new ideals and its new attitude], so that you may prove [for yourselves] what is the good and acceptable and perfect will of God, even the thing which is good and acceptable and perfect [in His sight for you]."
Today, I shared some complex and very intimate parts of my life. The reason is, for you to see, that I had a choice, just like everybody else on this planet does.
I had had reasons to stay stuck because of the many legitimate traumatic events I'd been through—reasons to be the victim. To always think of myself as less than others or feel like I am never enough or not worthy at all.
But I refuse to live my life as a victim. My life is not my own, and I gave up my life on this earth to live Christ's.
Galatians 2:20 AMP
"I have been crucified with Christ [that is, in Him I have shared His crucifixion]; it is no longer I who live, but Christ lives in me. The life I now live in the body I live by faith [by adhering to, relying on, and completely trusting] in the Son of God, who loved me and gave Himself up for me."
I had to allow the Holy Spirit to help me on this journey I am on.
I needed help and still need help daily mentally, emotionally, physically, socially, financially, and spiritually.
I was raised in a dysfunctional family, but that didn't give me the right to be a victim.
Not having a Christian dad, doesn't give me a pass to not fulfill the commandments as a Christian wife in my life.
I had to dig.
I had to pray and fast.
I had to ask God to help me by the power of His Spirit.
I read Christian books concerning being a Christ-like wife.
Christ paid the price for me, but I had to do my part and seek.
Not just as a trustworthy wife, but how to be a Godly mother, a good friend and a faithful follower of Christ.
This goes for every area of my life!
I had to dig for it.
I am still digging to learn more how to renew my mind and change the way I think, act and speak.
Have I arrived? Not!!!
As I live my life surrendered daily to Christ, I trust Him to transform me from the inside out and lead me on that narrow path He has set before me.
I have to make a conscious effort to think about what I am thinking about.
When certain negative situations arise, I must ask the Holy Spirit to help me not pick up old behaviors but act humbly like Him.
I've recognized how much I've grown in my mindset over the last couple of years.
This is because I still have a long way to go.
I still have to fight condemnation, guilt, discouragement, anxiety, depression, and insecurity regularly. But I am so grateful I am not where I used to be.
I know, without a shadow of a doubt, that the Word of God is the power of God unto salvation and that we each have a role daily to work out our soul salvation with fear and trembling.
Ladies, my prayer is that through this blog, you were encouraged to allow the Holy Spirit to help you transform your thought life and lead you into His good, acceptable, and perfect plan.
Why not focus on your heart and mental state in 2023?
Why not prioritize your own life first? Your life with God in the driver's seat.
Because if you are not okay, how can you be the best you for your family, friends, co-workers, and community and fulfill God's plan?
Let's take the first step and commit to consciously putting off old habits and mindsets and creating new patterns and perspectives through the Power of The Word!
The second step is dedication!
You MUST dedicate your time to worship, prayer, the Word, and declaration and to allow God-anointed teachers to teach you.
It takes a minimum of 21 days to break an old habit and 21 days to create a new one. So don't give up after a couple of days!
Even when you don't feel like it!
Remember: Faith is not a feeling!
Remember: Faith is not a feeling!
The third step is to put what you learned into daily action.
Write on sticky notes and post them on your mirror, kitchen cabinets, or car dash, or create reminders on your phone to think about your thoughts.
Example: One of the weak areas of my life is health. (Probably because of all the trauma from my childhood, including a double aneurysm). Because I know it is my weakest area, I put up healing scriptures all over my house, carrying them with me. I declare healing and health daily over my life because I need my mind to be anchored in that truth until it gets down into my heart and becomes my reality.
Know your weak areas and start working on them daily.
Remember, the most challenging transformation is the mind.
But you have the power to take your thoughts back and transform them!
P.S.: You are not alone. If you need a sister to walk with you, don't hesitate to reach out to the Fully Loaded Women's Organization. We have God-assigned and anointed ladies ready to lock arms with you and walk alongside you.
I also want to take this moment to THANK my awesome big sis Jamie Southerland. Twinkie for your encouragement, support, help, and love. I couldn't have done this without you. Love you eternally!