A Word of Encouragement

Tuesday, March 26, 2013

Hello everyone!

Have you ever faced something that seemed impossible?  Have you ever thought, "I'm just not good enough?"

I remember my very first year of competitive speech and debate with the NCFCA league.  My mom told me that she had requested for me to debate a champion competitor, Kaitlyn Johnston, at the next club meeting.  I literally had a breakdown...I was crying and screaming, for I was so terrified of debating against someone who was that good.

Reflecting back on the success I've seen in my final year of competition, I am reminded of where I began, not so very long ago.  I started as a nervous young girl, who lacked confidence in herself.  And when I did not reach a certain level of success, I deemed myself a failure, even though I was really just an inexperienced novice.  Now I see how the Lord has used the NCFCA to teach me invaluable life lessons about patience and waiting for His timing.

Apologetics Finals, Jacksonville Qualifier 2013

Colossians 3:12 says, "Therefore, as God’s chosen people, holy and dearly loved, clothe yourselves with compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience."

Now, whenever I go into a round, I remind myself that my worth is not defined by a ballot or a trophy. Nothing I do or say or accomplish will ever label me.

I don't want to define myself by the things that I do, whether that's debate or speech or writing.  Instead, I am defined only by the fact that I am a daughter of God.  I am a child of the one true King.  Every debate round is for Him alone—every award and every speech.

Philippians 4:13 says, "I can do all things through Him who gives me strength."

I really felt God's peace and strength this past week at the Jacksonville tournament.  I was very sick on the day of Finals and I could barely speak that morning, for I was losing my voice.  And yet God was faithful and saw me through to the end.

Just remember that even though we can't see the end of the road, God is waiting there and knows the reason why, even when we may not understand.  In my round against Kaitlyn, I promised myself I would never debate again...(My mother said otherwise!)  Now I am so thankful that I continued, that I pushed myself to new levels and overcame the challenges.  It was difficult in the moment, but I am stronger today because of it.

I wish you every blessing,


For more information on the NCFCA, please visit www.ncfca.org
For more information on Region 8, please visit https://www.facebook.com/ncfca8?fref=ts

With Andrew Carleton, one of my best friends and a fellow servant leader from Legacy for Christ speech and debate

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  1. Incredible post, Ciera. You are exactly right!

  2. Wow. I never would have guessed you'd be kicking and screaming like me. Ha ha! I'm so proud of you! You did such an amazing job last week and I have no doubt that you'll do even more amazing things in the future. God bless! <3

  3. Love your words of wisdom Ciera!