A WHIFF of heaven is a website designed by women for the biblical encouragement of women.
This journey began for a woman crying for a deeper experience with God. Twice she was spared from death — each time the Lord told her to keep using her voice to reach others.
Below is her story
[This is a written response to a former student’s inquiry regarding her abrupt choice to quit teaching.]
“I was told by a specialist that I had cancer and it involved two body systems. The outlook was poor. Thinking over my life… I knew I hadn’t been fully faithful to God. I had often sought to have what the world offers and neglected what God asked.
Through prayer, I surrendered my life to God. I told Him that I would rather be laid to rest in death if it could bring more people to a full commitment with God — than to live.
However, I told God that if He could change my heart and fulfill the meaning of my name (which means messenger) than to spare my life. I was anointed and my husband and I went to a Christian lifestyle center in Alabama.
There, I committed to completely live God’s ways — taught in His word. This included regular: fresh air, exercise, water, rest, abstaining from the harmful/temperance with the good, a healthful balanced diet, sunshine, and ultimate Trust in God’s word — believing and acting like I believed it.
These were changes for me. Previously, I taught health class but I didn’t live what I taught. I am sorry for the poor example I lead. I wanted and sought a relationship with God but the constant rules and regulations associated with traditions of humans, made me pull away time and time again. When I was committed I was… but far more honestly I didn’t follow through Until the next time I needed to be committed.
________, I no longer want to hide my sins of claiming to be what I wasn’t, because now I am learning through trials to become what I truly wanted.
We left Alabama after a month’s treatments following the plans and developing habits… I had a long way to go. Lol [laugh out loud] I still have a long journey ahead with much change. But the doctors overseeing my case and blood work etc at that time said, “it was more likely that they had cancer than I!”
Processing that information was impossible. I was so tired and so weak. God healed my cancer but didn’t restore my health. I am so glad He didn’t! I have had to learn to keep walking in His ways for life and it has allowed me to grow closer than I have ever been before.
My health is better. I was able to go backpack camping for the very first time last summer! I rarely have headaches. Whereas, when you and I were together they plagued me five days out of seven. The extent often left my stomach void of contents. I have gained back some weight and people are beginning to say that my face has a different look — one of life or a soft glow.
Leaving my job in NY began a journey of growth.
I have learned and am learning:
How to study the Bible better,
What I believe for myself,
A comparison Bible helps me read and understand,
What a relationship with God looks like without the “faking,”
To stop all pretending,
A reason for what I do, and
Unless God convicts me personally, I don’t need to feel pressured.
We each have a journey. What I cling to as more important than God is different from what you might have blocking your vision/heart. So if I am convicted that garlic isn’t something He wants in my life — I have to let it go. Whereas garlic might be just what God asks you to add to your life.
The standards/traditions humans set in order to “be following God” aren’t even close to helpful. They actually become an ever widening gap. People can’t be everyone’s “perfect.” Someone will always say others aren’t: holy, reverent, a “true” christian.
If you have given God everything He prompted you to give.
If you have taken everything He has given you to take.
Then you ARE His perfect.
Only His opinion matters.
Through trials, God is opened my eyes. He is showing me how to care and give grace to others. First He had to teach me who HE really was and what He required from me. Then He had to teach me to allow myself grace.
He never gives me more than what I can handle. During some trials, in order to resist the temptations of the enemy, I literally ran out of my house crying. This journey hasn’t been easy or automatic. However, I would not change a thing except! that I had understood and given up myself to Him sooner.
My life was once plagued by fear, worry, and a desperation for accolades. Now I find it full of peace, rest, and true acceptance. Burdened before to be all to all. Freed now to allow my trying through Jesus power to do great things in His timing and way.
Now I seek to point up and give encouragement to others who are seeking or adrift. Those in need of a new: picture, understanding, reason, and desire for God.
I am still learning to choose to count blessings to myself/others when I want to talk about: “how bad,” “how wrong” and “how mean.” Discovering when I refuse to talk and think the negative the discouragement and sorrow is forced from me.
It’s like what the Bible teaches. Satan cannot be where God is. When I choose or force myself to seek God above self and gloom, all the dark thoughts and depression/discouragement vanishes like a mist in the sun. Although it isn’t always fast it does happen as I continue to step forward, eyes up in faith.
In closing God has started me on a journey to help women find Him and link “arms” with those who have found Him. Vulnerably, I pray via text, email, Facebook messages, and snail mail for women. I also send encouragement in other forms: scripture, song lyrics, short stories and photos. Just last week, I took the first shaky steps in setting up a website towards an actual ministry for this endeavor.
I can testify of God’s real, powerful, answers to prayer in the short time He has been using my (unskilled at writing) hands to send out His hope to others.
A “perfect” writer — I am not. Nor do I try to pretend. I just give of what God gives me.
Father, thank You for this woman [and the others reading along]. Thank You for bringing her this far through her education/life. You know how hard she has struggled. You know when she feels like giving up. Father direct her into whatever plans You have for her. I know that You gave her the gifts and talents she has been using. I know that You won’t place her in a yucky, hated, boring, un-useful or unproductive job/role where what You gave her will be wasted. Thank You for preparing an adventure for her. Help her to see past the mirage of this life and the ever illusive “American dream.” Help her find: Your purpose, enjoyment, and the peace she seeks.
In Jesus name amen.
After the woman’s second experience facing death. She prayed the scripture below as a prayer of renewed surrender. It was then the Lord broadened her understanding about using her voice for Him. Slowly the ideas for awhiffofheaven were unfolded to her bit by bit. The Lord gave her only a step of faiths worth when it was needed.
What began from one woman’s choice to encourage another woman through texting prayer and pointing up to God in every trial and calm period has ignited a wildfire among women to choose the same. She and others are the women behind this site.
The Lord answers the surrendered prayer.
“I told you my plans, and You answered. Now teach me Your decrees.”
Psalms 119:26 NLT
What will you do with your voice?