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Welcome to Surrendered Faith Blog!

Updated: Oct 29, 2023

What exactly is Surrendered Faith? What does it mean?


It can mean something different for you than for me.


Simply put, it’s a lifelong journey with our Heavenly Father. As each season of life passes by, He takes us deeper and deeper into a trusting relationship with Him. With each lesson life throws at us, He refines our faith to a place where we freely surrender our lives to His care because we know His plans for us are good. He will never leave our side in our darkest hour of need. He will celebrate with us the moments of joy life offers.


Cheri Leyva sitting on the ground smiling, while holding her Bible

When My Journey Began.


For me, my journey began in 1990 at the first Harvest Crusade in Southern California. When I said “Yes” to the invitation to invite Jesus into my life. I had never felt peace and joy like that before in my entire life.


That moment, saying yes, and surrendering my life to Christ, marked the beginning of my journey.


God began His work in my heart by on changing my mindset around His love for me.


Jeremiah 31:3 says, “I have loved you with an everlasting love; I have drawn you with loving-kindness” (NIV).


I read this verse. I heard over and over that God loved me, but I didn’t really believe it. Until one day, Jesus met me in a vision. He sat beside me in a beautiful garden and declared His love for me. There was no guilt, no shame, no condemnation. Just His pure love for me! From that moment on, I never doubted His love.


My heart finally got the message that my head already knew.


A New Name. A New Destiny.


A few years later, in my quiet time, I was studying Peter.


I came to John 1:42, “Jesus looked at him and said, ‘You are Simon son of John. You will be called Cephas’ (which, when translated, is Peter).” (NIV).


I asked God, “If you were to change my name, what would you change it to?” God is in the business of changing names and when He does, He changes destinies. I heard Him say, “Faith”.


I believe in that moment my destiny shifted, and I stepped into a new destiny.

My faith grew. It wasn’t always easy.


Mostly it grew through the difficulties life threw at me. Divorce, single parenting, managing finances on a single income. But I always saw God’s faithfulness to provide for me and my children. With each prayer I wrote to God, pouring my heart out to Him in a form of a letter, I always signed off, “love, Faith”.


Until one day, I understood the true meaning of surrendering completely to the challenges of life.


Trusting that whatever the outcome, God has me in His loving arms. He never takes His eyes off me.


Surrendered Faith.


It was during this season of life that I began posting my prayers anonymously on a Facebook page called Surrendered Faith. Someone I loved dearly was sinking deeper and deeper into the pit of addiction. I watched this beautiful boy lose everything until he had nothing. In and out of rehab, in and out of jail, homeless, sleeping in his car, and I was completely helpless.


When you have absolutely no control, all you can do is surrender and trust God is in control.


I may have been helpless, but I wasn’t hopeless.


I did the work I needed to do to set boundaries in love, learning the difference between loving this person and enabling them. I felt God’s promise that everything would be ok. He would be ok and that one day he would be free from his addiction. This season of life took 5 years, but today this beautiful boy has been clean 8 years and has become a wonderful husband and father who loves his family and God. This season taught me what it means to fully surrender, trusting God with everything I hold dear. With each prayer written, I signed off, “Surrendered, Faith.”


The journey to surrendered faith didn’t end there.


My Rock Bottom.


I had been so focused on caring for others and working tirelessly that I didn't realize I had work to do with myself. God had more work He needed to do in my heart.


I think the hardest and most courageous work someone can do is to turn inward and focus on their “junk” and that’s what I did.


Cheri Leyva sitting in a chair looking off into the distance

I had been stuffing, numbing, and avoiding my feelings for so long that I didn’t even know I had any. This is when I hit my “rock bottom” and reached out to a Christian counselor. For 2 years did the heavy work of connecting with myself.


I remember her first question to me, “How does that make you feel?” I had no clue and couldn’t put language into how I felt.


So, she had me start with sad, glad, mad, and afraid. Since then, I have expanded my emotional vocabulary.


This was by far the hardest season of my life, but the most rewarding. There were days I thought I was going to lose it. There were months, I wasn’t sure my marriage was going to make it.


But God was faithful to walk with me through this season of darkness of the soul.

From the ashes came beauty (Isaiah 61:3).


I saw myself as God sees me and I actually loved what I saw. I replaced the lies that I was unworthy of love, unlovable, and invisible with God’s truth.


I am a cherished daughter of the King, full of faith, kindness, and strength. Created to bring heaven to earth in each moment of every day.


My story of surrendered faith isn’t finished.


I know God is calling me to so much more than I could ever imagine. There is going to be joy and laughter, sorrow and pain along the path, but I know He will be with me every step of the way.


Embracing the Journey Ahead.


Which leads me to today. The right here and now. This blog!


Funny thing is this blog also started back in 2011 when I was posting prayers on Facebook. I would write a few posts, but it never took off. I never forgot about it. Never cancelled it.


God was working things out in my heart to prepare me for this day. I had to do the work in my heart before I could ever help anyone do the work in theirs. The education in psychology at Liberty University, the years of personal counseling, the training I received, and the connection I have with the Holy Spirit have equipped me to do the work God has called me to.


This is where science and psychology meet Surrendered Faith.


I pray as you follow me on social media, subscribe to my newsletter or blog, that you will find resources and encouragement that will draw you closer to God and yourself. That you will discover your own story of Surrendered Faith as you walk with your Heavenly Father on this journey called life.


Until we meet again, embracing the journey God set before us!


Cheri


Quiet Reflection with picture of hands in prayer and a Bible


Quiet Reflection


Take a moment to reflect on your journey of surrendered faith.

  1. Where do you see God's hand moving in different seasons of your life?

  2. When were you first aware of His everlasting love?

  3. If God were to change your name, what would it be?

  4. What are the lies you believe about yourself? What is God's truth? (hint: you will always find His truth in scripture)

  5. What is God working out in your heart to prepare you for the next chapter in your journey with Him?

Please share in the comments below what God is doing in and through you! I would love to hear how He is working in your life. If you want help answering some of these questions or want to go deeper, let's talk. Book a complimentary session today.


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2 comentários


I am so excited to continue to read these posts! God has been working mightily to remind me that I can trust him with all things.

Curtir
Cheri Leyva
Cheri Leyva
23 de set. de 2023
Respondendo a

It has been a blessing to watch you grow in your trust relationship with God. You have replaced fear with peace and grace. You are beautiful, my friend! ❤️

Curtir
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