Couponing for the Rest of Us

7-day Doubt Diet Day 3: Trigger Points #Renee Swope

 

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If you haven’t signed up, don’t put it off – YOU are worth it. You’ll need your own copy to read (its free HERE) as I won’t copy each day’s entire devotion. We’ll go through the devotion each day together, sharing scripture, encouragement, doubts, fears, and insecurities that have taken up residence in our hearts. If this is your first time joining us, I want you to know I do not have it all together and I have faced doubts and insecurities my entire life.  We are in this together  it’s a “sharing” thing.
 

 

  Food for thought: The LORD turned to him and said, “Go in the strength you have .… Am I not sending you?” (Judges 6:14 NIV)

 

On Day 3 Renee beings by asking, “Maybe you’ve sensed God leading you to participate in a ministry, but doubt has convinced you that you’re not smart enough or gifted enough. Perhaps you wanted to have kids, and now you have a family but you doubt you really have what it takes to be a good mom. Or maybe you’ve wanted to change jobs and now have the opportunity to do just that. But you don’t want to go because you’re afraid of failing at something new.

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Then she turns to a story in the bible about Gideon, from Judges chapter 6.  His doubts and insecurities told him that he wasn’t anointed, God didn’t call him, there was a mistake he would fail.  As you read the chapter you see that he begins to make progress as he changes his thoughts to reflect God’s thoughts.

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Then, life happened and Gideon faced a conflict and defeat.  He didn’t believe that he was the warrior that God said he was.  Instead he believed,“But how can I save Israel? My clan is the weakest in Manasseh, and I am the least in my family” (Judges 6:15).  The angel of the Lord said he was a great warrior and Gideon tel  Why would he struggle when the angel of the Lord is standing in front of him?  His past spoke louder than the promise of his future.

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Hurts, insecurities and broken dreams from our past have a powerful influence over our thought life.  We have a filter in our mind that has been shaped by our life experience.  Everthing we hear has to go through that filter before it reaches our ears.  Recognizing those things that trigger our emotions is the focus of todays devotion.

 

I began to ask myself what negative emotions do I experience the most.  It didn’t take but a second for insecurity to raise it’s ugly head.

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Those of you who don’t know me, I am six foot tall.   When I was a little girl people called me BIG BIRD, and it wasn’t meant as a compliment.  I desperatly wanted to shrink so no one would notice me .  I was so tall for my age people would say things like, “My, you are tall.  Do you think you’ve stopped growing yet.”  “You are two heads taller than so and so, aw she’s so cute look at her and her cute little feet isn’t she a doll.”

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At school on picture day I always knew what was coming, “Oh dear, honey you need to get in the very back you are so much taller than everyone else, even the boys.  My Lord, that’s right keep backing up.  Just as far back as you can go.”

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What good is a 6ft tall teenager who doesn’t have an athletic bone in her body.  I can’t count the number of times I’ve heard,”I bet you play basketball don’t you.  You’re so tall, of course you do how silly of me to ask.”  I hated PE class, especially when we played basketball.  My PE coach in Middle school was particuarly hard on me.   One day as we were playing basketball,she screamed at me for missing a shot, “Knight (my maiden name) you should be better than that.  You are 6 foot tall how did you miss it.”

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I got the ultimate confidence booster when I was in the 10th grade.  I made the varsity cheerleading squad in the 9th grade.  I had hoped that I’d graduate from BIG BIRD status to one of the cool girls.  I remember walking into class after the bell rang and seeing a picture of a girl drawn on the desk in a cheerleading uniform.  Her legs looked like a giraffe – with the words “how did she make it” scribbled out to the side.  Yes, they were referring to me and I began to ask myself the same question.  The next year I didn’t even try out.

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Now, I’m all grown up and you know what, I hate sports.  I haven’t thought about those situations in years.   I don’t have to they are engrained in me as truth now.

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Like Renee, my insecurities and fears have kept me from trying things.  You want me to go hiking, no thanks.  A climbing wall – fantastic everyone below can laugh at me while I’m suspended in midair with nothing but ropes and my long legs tangled in the rope.  When my kids ask my to play basketball or softball – I start to panic inside.  No!!  I don’t want to.  I don’t want them to see how bad I am.  My husband played golf in college. (Yes, I married an athlete – good in every sport) He would love if we golfed together.  In December we’ll celebrate our 15th anniversary and guess what, my doubts have convinced me not to try.

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In Chapter 1 of ”A Confident Heart,”  Renee shares what God revealed to her after he spoke to her about her “shadow of doubt”.  She said, “ As I stood there in my bathroom, I knew I needed to get honest with God too. I needed more than just a quick fix. I wanted to figure out what triggered my self-doubts.”

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Damaged emotions and insecurities from our past have a powerful influence over how we see ourselves today.  Do you see a pattern of doubts or insecurity that is rooted in your past. 

   

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A Message from Renee
Excerpt from The 7-day Doubt Diet:  Day 3

Conflict, criticism, and comparison are three triggers that lead me into that yucky place of uncertainty……

When I find myself standing in the shadow of doubt, I ask Jesus to show me what triggered my emotions. Then I process that trigger point through the filter of God’s perspective and promises. I ask Him to show me what lie I believe that needs to be replaced with His truth. I then ask Him to change the way I’m thinking, which changes the way I’m feeling, and eventually transforms the way I’m living.

Over time, I’ve learned to rely on God’s power to defeat my insecurities, which has empowered me to fulfill His calling on my life. And so can you! God calls us to live beyond the shadows our doubts, but it is not always about what He wants us to do as much as it is about what He wants to do in us as we learn to completely depend on Him.

Doubt Diet Tip:In the same way emotional triggers make us want to eat a half-gallon of ice cream or a whole bag of chips, we have emotional triggers that cause us to doubt ourselves. Ask God to show you your most common triggers and help you process them through the filter of His truth.


Giveaway & Reminder: New Devotion Series Begins 9/8

Girls, I am so excited that this week is finally here. We were planning on starting our 7 day Doubt Diet Devotion series tomorrow but have postponed until Thursday September 8th.

Renee emailed me today, to give us another copy of her book to give to one of our readers before we start our devotion together.   I think she’s as excited as we are:)

How to enter:

  • Go to Renee’s website here and sign up to receive the free 7-day Doubt Diet devotion.
  • Leave a comment below letting us know that you signed up.
  • Already signed up? No problem leave us a comment letting us know.

The giveaway will end Wednesday night at 11:59pm est.  Open to residents of the US.  The winner will have 48 hours to respond after the announcement before a new winner is chosen.

Dates to Remember:

  • Thursday, September 8th - The first day of our devotion series, we’ll start with an overview of ch1)
  • Friday, September 9th – Giveaway opens up for entries. (details later this week)
  • Wednesday, September 14th at 9:30pm – Live facebook chatt with the Renee Swope,  author of A Confident Heart.
  • Friday, September 16th – 4 Winners Announced copy of A Confident Heart.

Join us as we share our hearts and encourage one another.  Don’t forget to sign up here to receive the free devotion and chapter 1.  Then, leave a comment for your entry in the giveaway.

A “New Creation Makeover” – I’m game how about you?

.I (Kasey) am going to go ahead and warn you – this might get ugly.  First, I’m gonna be brutally honest about myself and second this is going to be a really long post.   I don’t have it all together, not even close.  I’ve got all kinds of  junk – issues – situations whatever you want to call it that I deal with, and an abundant supply.  However, hands down THE BIGGIE is that I am extremely insecure and afraid of being criticized or made fun of.

The first time Kelly and I were on TV, I thought I would surely die.  Not because I didn’t know what to say – I talk more than 5 girls put together.  No – I was terrified that by “putting myself out there,”  hundreds maybe thousands of people would criticize, and make fun of me. Even worse, with today’s technology the opportunities are endless - rewind, pause, record… uh-huh and watch it over and over again.  Not only was I putting myself in a very vulnerable position, but one that could be revisited any number of times after the fact.

Sounds silly, I’m sure, to many people – but very real to me.  It wasn’t cool being the only 6ft tall chick at school, and mu nickname “Big Bird” wasn’t meant to be flattering.  I’m sure no one else has crazy insecurities and fears right?  Like my friend Kristin for example -a Godly wife, mom to 5 children, the kindest person I have ever met, she has the  most beautiful blue eyes and I am certain her house is always spotless.  I admire her, look up to her, I think she’s “supermom.”

This week she started a blog, which surprised me because I just knew in all her free time she played special games with her kids and read them books all day.  As I began to read, I quickly realized she doesn’t have it all together and she’s not afraid to admit it.  I’d like to introduce you to my friend Kristin, a precious woman willing to bare her soul on a purposeful journey to a total makeover….from the inside – out!  (For the record…..I still think she’s the “stuff,” no matter what she says)

Is there anything in your life that you want to change. Something you have said you were going to do or have even started but quit. Do you want to get in shape, get healthy, get organized, get closer to God, start drinking more water, get control of your finances, or if you are a new mom. . .even a goal to shower every day is a good goal! LOL!

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Chattanooga Times Front-Page Story: Rising Food Prices & Struggling Families *Please Read*

Image & Quotes courtesy of Chattanooga Times Free Press

I don’t know how many of you read the somber article “Biting Our Budgets” on the front page of Sunday’s Chattanooga Times, but it stopped me dead in my tracks.  I saw the story again last night on the news.  The rising cost of groceries is an issue gripping more and more families every day.  Sadly, families who used to “just get by”…. well…  they simply aren’t anymore.

I felt something catch in my throat reading the grim statements below:

“We ain’t got nothing to eat. “We usually just try to struggle through it, but we couldn’t make it this month. I never thought it would come to this.” – Tron Coots, 33

“Every time I go to the grocery store, the prices go up.  I find ways to buy groceries with the money I have one month and, by the next month, it isn’t enough.” – Gina Headrick, 26, mother of 2

Doesn’t that make you want to cry?  I mean, seriously!  We need to reach out to these people!

The article went on to reveal some sobering facts:

  • February had the largest monthly increase in food costs in 2 1⁄2 years
  • Gas prices rose more than $.40/ gallon this year
  • Food banks have seen a large increase in families dependant on them for monthly boxes of supplies

Graph above shows rising cost of commodities from August 2010 – Feb 2011.  Includes Cereal, Vegetable Oils, Meat, Seafood, Sugar, Bananas, and Oranges Price Indices. – Courtesy of IndexMundi.com

Here’s the deal, guys.  I feel extremely blessed to have learned about couponing in time to help steer my family off the road we were headed down.  And I know that we couponers, as a whole, are doing okay in an economy where many are not.  We’re pushing through and weathering the storm.  We’ve taken it upon ourselves to learn new survival tactics.  And strangely enough, couponing is a HUGELY effective survival tool.

Don’t you wish we could reach out to folks who are drowning?  Teach them how to keep their heads above water,  show them how to ride it out?

We do too!!

I would love you all to tune in at 4:15 pm as Kasey & Kelly go live on the air with David Karnes on radio station WPLZ 95.3 FM.  If you don’t live in the Chattanooga listening area tune in here to listen online.  I’m also putting the word out on Facebook – for people to flood Time2Save’s facebook page with their personal testimonies.  Just tell your story, honestly, briefly – and show how things can be different.

Just imagine if someone who NEEDS to hear this comes to the website or the Facebook Page to find out more – and is met with the confidence and encouragement of our community of readers and friends.   What kind of hope might be kindled in someone, just by reading your story and connecting on a personal level?

Please take a moment – leave a testimony here in the comment section – and if you will, on our Facebook page here as well.

Thank you!!

(We ask that you keep your comments positive, without judgement of those from the story.)

A New Couponer’s First Big Trip: Bi-Lo Savings!

My friend Tessie JUST started couponing this week. She has been a single mom of 3, and a full-time nurse, for the last few years – and just didn’t have the time to coupon. She still doesn’t really have extra time, but since getting married recently she’s decided to hop aboard the coupon bandwagon and this is her very first week!

She was so excited after a trip to Bi-Lo on Monday, that she brought her van full of groceries over to show me – here’s how she did!
(Tessie, I’m so proud of you honey!!)

(2) Kelloggs Corn Flakes
(2) Oscar Mayer Lunchables
(2) Red Baron Pizzas
(4) Wyler’s Mixes
(2) Sargento Cheese
(1) Sprite Zero 2-Liter
(1) Kool Aid Jammers
(1) Vitamin Water
Pork Chops Family Pack
3 lb Ground Beef
1 Gallon Milk
Total Before Coupons/Savings = $65.90
Total AFTER Coupons/Savings = $29.64!

Tessie didn’t have tons of coupons to start with, so she kept her eyes on the prize by looking for BOGO items and closeout deals with store coupons attached.  This is a great way to save on things like meat or dairy items!

Okay , now it’s YOUR turn!  Feel free to share any deals you’ve picked up this week that you’re proud of!

Couponing at 18: Elizabeth’s Journey {Part 9}

Meet Elizabeth – a sweet girl we know, who recently started couponing. We all kind of want to be her momma:)

Hey everyone!!!!!

I hope that you are having a great week. Last week I found three freebies at Bi-Lo!  My free items include: butter, hot cocoa, and Maruchan Yakisoba noodles.

I was very excited about the free hot cocoa, because of the cold weather. It is always nice to cuddle up in a blanket, pop in a movie, and drink some hot cocoa. This would be a great idea for a family to spend time together.

Don’t forget to spend some time with your family, and tell your family you love them.

Your thrifty friend,

Elizabeth

Time2Give: ♥Carter’s Big Give!♥ (Sent in by his Mom)

This Time2Give story was sent in by Andrea – she’s holding a local coupon swap for the Chattanooga/Cleveland area on Feb. 3rd. Attendees are asked to bring non-perishables for The Caring Place – a local outreach program for the needy. Read all about it HERE!
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Deuteronomy 16:17
Every man shall give as he is able, according to the blessing of the LORD your God which He has given you.

As a child my Grandmother drilled this into my head.   As the owner of a restaurant, she never lets anyone leave hungry. I don’t remember a time when she hasn’t been the most giving person I know.  This week, I decided that it was time that my 7 year old learned the value of giving – in a real, hands-on way!
So, I got online and ordered (20) coupons for $.50/1 Maruchan Yakisoba noodles.  I gave them to my son, Carter, along with $15, and said “Let’s go shopping.” When we arrived at the store, he got the buggy, talked to the store manager to make sure that they had enough, counted out (40) individual meals, and off to the checkout line we went. I gave the cashier my BiLo card, and the fun began!
Carter told the bag boy that he would bag them and he brought his own bags. Afterwards he handed the lady his coupons, made sure that she took off for bringing his own bags. The grand total was….. $2.85!!!!
He was very excited about taking all of these meals to The Caring Place in Cleveland, TN last Tuesday (1/11). Carter understands that everyone doesn’t have it as easy as he does, and in his own words “ I don’t like to be hungry, and I don’t want other kids to be! “ Needless to say I am one very happy mother!
If you have small children, and have a large stockpile of things, or can get free items that you will not use – use it as a teachable moment. Let them do all the work, even though it’s not much, that way they know the value of giving!

Publix: Great Reader Trip!

We got this great email from reader, Becky, today – and I wanted to share with you! Have you made any great trips lately??

Hi Girls!
I am a very frequent visitor to your site, and I got a ton for very little today at Publix.  I thought I would share it with you.

I bought:
10 LARGE tubes of Colgate toothpaste
30 jars of Beech Nut Baby Food
5 4-packs of YoPlus yogurt.

My subtotal was $51.80, and my total before taxes was $7.50.
I paid 14% of what those products would have cost if I had waited until my husband mentioned on his way out that he needed toothpaste!  Unbelievable!  I am a stay at home mom and it helps me to feel like I am contributing financially.  Thank you so much!

-Becky

See all our Publix deals & matchups HERE.