10.30.2015

6 Struggles Girls With High Standards [For Herself] Can Relate To


1)  You sometimes think you don't need any help and are tough enough to handle a situation.
It takes a lot for us to admit that we need help.  We're strong individuals, who have confidence, and people know this (and even compliment us on it!).  So when we actually have to ask for help, in our minds, it's as if we're getting on our knees, crying and begging for assistance.  Not cool.

2)  You are constantly raising the bar, not only for yourself, but for others as well.
We don't settle and we can't stand it when other people do.

3)  To you, 'good' can be - and usually is - the opposite of perfect.
Basically, when something is 'good', it's just a settlement, not a goal that was reached.  And this is hardcore FAILURE in our eyes.

4)  You sometimes forget that pain is part of life.
But when we embrace it, it's like the reality of it absorbs into our flesh and we become stronger because we admitted to a weakness.

5)  You absolutely hate the word 'bored'.
One of our biggest pet peeves is when people are complacent and are constantly complaining about how their lives 'aren't exciting enough'.  Or when you ask them what they're up to and they respond with, 'Nothing.  I'm bored.'  WELL THEN GET UP AND DO SOMETHING.

6)  You sometimes find it difficult to not point out how people can do and be better.
We see potential everywhere.  This can be a strength and a weakness because, for example, we are more often than not very optimistic creatures...but we also give way too many chances.  There needs to be a healthy balance of encouragement but no, you can't walk all over me when I do encourage you.

10.23.2015

Everyday Blessings // 39


>> having encouraging conversations with customers
>> submitting a manuscript
>> planning a surprise party for one of my sister's birthdays (above pic is from that day)
>> writing my Christmas wishlist
>> cherry pop tarts
>> my newest movie poster (Jurassic World, because Chris Pratt)
>> new jeans from American Eagle that fit perfectly
>> unplanned movie nights with a bestie
>> discovering new rap artists (and absolutely loving them)
>> White Chocolate Blackberry mocha
>> starting a new Bible study
>> buying my ticket to Peru!!
>> inspiration
>> girl nights
>> fresh, clean towels
>> ordering pizza at my work
>> scratching things off my bucket list
>> Young Living essential oils
>> a new blog design is in the works!
>> Green Tea London Fog
>> daily encouraging verses from dear friends
>> the relief of admitting to not being okay
>> making new memories
>> three fundraisers planned for the Peru trip
>> starting a new book
>> actually having time to read
>> this autumn weather
>> today is day #39 of my sabbatical

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How has your October been so far?  Anything you're looking forward to in these last couple of weeks?

10.19.2015

October Skies


Autumn is in full swing upon us
The wind flirts with the trees
Making them blush different shades of
Yellow, oranges and reds
The Master Artist boasts of His splendor
As He strokes the skies with His perfect brush
Painting them all sorts of brilliant colors
The evening air is crisp
Making me thankful I work in a warm coffee shop
I wrap my fingers around my pumpkin spice latte
And bury my nose in my scarf
Autumn is in full swing upon us
And the October skies are gloriously radiating
The colors of my heart.

10.14.2015

This Is the Kind of Man You Want


I will never forget the time I met a lady in Seattle.  The meeting was completely unplanned by me, but divinely planned by Someone else.

Our conversation was about her daughter's recent engagement.  She was very emotional about it, as it was her oldest daughter and they had a very close relationship.  While talking about her daughter and soon to be son-in-law's love story, the mother paused, looked me in the eye and said,

'The biggest mistake you can ever make is to marry someone who doesn't love Jesus.  Don't even give a man like that your attention.  The first thing you need to love about him is how much he loves the LORD.'

I've repeated that to myself over the years.  And it has proven true in many different scenarios.

There's a large difference between a Christian guy and a man of God.  And you should look for, pay attention to, the latter...

Fall in love with a man who loves Jesus above all else.  Fall in love with a man who is desperately in love with his Savior before he even knows of your existence.  Fall in love with a man who is not ashamed of the Gospel, not ashamed of his love for the LORD, not ashamed to make a public display regarding his love for the truth and for salvation.

Fall in love with a man who knows that God is the best foundation for a relationship - because not only is He the strongest, but He is also the Author of all love stories and your relationship should be a testimony of His grace and forgiveness.

And how will his relationship with God affect you?

He will treat you as the daughter of God that you are.  He will respect you.  He will pursue you.  He will treasure you.  He will worship God with you.  He will pray with you and for you.  He will walk beside you during the best and worst moments of your life.  He will be honest with you.  He will take the leadership role in the relationship.  He will help you in keeping your purity, maintaining your standards, sticking to your boundaries.

He will not lead you astray.  He will not pressure you.  He will not control you.  He will not challenge your standards and boundaries.  He will not force you into doing anything.  He will not seek to pleasure himself.  He will never interfere with your relationship with God.

And if you and he are both actively seeking the LORD as individuals, your relationship will blossom and flourish with your pursuit of His will for you and your lives - together or not.

And as difficult as this sounds, you want a man who will pursue God so fully and so whole-heartedly that if he is distracted from His Savior or his calling in life, and you are that distraction, he may need to put you to the side for a bit.  He will choose to loosen his grip on the woman he loves for the God he loves.  If you are a woman after God's own heart and want a man who pursues the same, you will honor and love this characteristic of him.

What really matters is that he loves the LORD.
And he will love you the best through the love he receives from God.

And that is something you will never regret.

10.12.2015

Choosing Who To Love


Sometimes hate is what we receive in exchange for our effort to love.  It seems unfair, doesn't it?  The love in our hearts should be - deserves to be! - returned with the same kind of love.  Right?

But that doesn't always happen.

And when it doesn't, we feel heart-broken, unappreciated, and hurt.

Sometimes we choose people to love.  And by doing so, we think that if we love them, they will love us and everything will work out just fine and dandy.  But when that love isn't reciprocated, we feel discouraged.  

Love is much more than just a feeling. It's a choice. 

Sometimes we choose to love the person who is not concerned with loving us the way God would have them.  When this happens, and we continually try to love them, we are headed for heart-break every time.  We think that by accepting their demeaning behavior towards us, yet still doing what's right, then it's okay to take their blows.  We think that if we keep loving and forgiving them like Jesus does, then their behavior towards us will just magically change.  

But are we called to have faith in people?  No.  Sure, it'd be great if through our love, God touches someone's heart and life and they have a miraculous turn-around.  But our hope shouldn't be in that.  And the only way to end a cycle of being unappreciated and beaten down is if we walk away. 

If that person really wants you to stick around, they will do everything in their power to make you stay.  But if not, you're not losing much.

God knows our hearts, though.  Regardless of how we try to show our heart's love to others and they don't understand and see it, God does.  He knows all the love that we have for others.  And all the love that we've given.  He has every bit of it measured and poured into a treasure chest.  Your treasure chest - in heaven!  And in due time, you will reap what you have sown.  Those who have done wrong against you, or hated you instead of loved you, will receive what they deserve as well.  According to God's will.  He is the reigning King of this world.  He is the only One with the power to deal out consequences and rewards or punishments.

Don't grow weary of showing love.  Love is the greatest of them all.  Without it, this world would be a much darker place.

10.05.2015

5 Reasons Social Media Is Not A Healthy Habit



1)  Social media causes us to be selfish.
Even if we don't realize it at first, we are always more interested in how WE appear, how WE look to others, how others perceive US, and always needing to look OUR best.  Am I right?

2)  Social media causes us to be prideful.
Yes, you love how many likes you get on that Facebook post.  And you love the fact that you gained two followers today on Instagram.  And it's cool to see that over 50 people have seen your snap story.  You feel popular.  You feel liked.  You feel good.

3)  Social media distracts us.
It's a common sight to see people on their phones - whether while walking, eating, or visiting.  Why?  Is whatever is on your phone more important than investing in reality?  When we're bored, stressed or want to get our minds off of our own lives, we just tend to default to our social medias.  We want to distract ourselves from whatever is worrying us.  We find relief in watching, and scrolling through, others' lives.  And without even realizing it, we get our minds off our own problems by taking advantage of them...not on God's always ready, always willing, and always loving ears and arms.  Social media is so accessible and instant, and we use this as an excuse to not talk to God.  How horrible is that?


4)  Social media causes us to compare ourselves to others.
And when (not 'if') we find ourselves lacking in certain things, we beat ourselves up and strive to a standard of perfection that is worldly, not godly.

She's way prettier than I am.
She always posts the best pictures.
How can she always look so perfect?
He eats way healthier than I do.
He's always getting to travel.
Why can't I look that good in the morning?
My room is never that neat.

5)  Social media becomes our identity.
Separating your online identity from reality can be a bit of challenge sometimes.  Even when people try to be 'the same online as they are in person', this isn't always the case.  The more likes you get, the more important you feel.  We post pictures on Instagram in hopes that our followers will like and comment on them, and through that, we feed our ego and remind ourselves that 'Hey, it's okay.  Our followers like us.'  But how often do we turn to God for our worth and value?  Do we not go to Him for evaluation and identity anymore?  It's difficult to not base our significance on how many likes we get on our photos and posts or when our blogs don't receive as much attention as we thought it would or wish it did, when social media is the outlet for personal glory.

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I am not saying that social media is evil and we should delete all our accounts and apps.  Social media can be - and is - very useful and convenient, but I believe must be used in moderation.  I still have my blog, Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and Snapchat, but am currently taking a sabbatical so have chosen to take a rest from using my social medias.  They were causing to be distractions for me and each of these 5 points could apply to my life in regards to them.

We can long for our popularity on social media to grow so that we can feel all sorts of good about ourselves, but the truth is, the hole in our heart that seeks fulfillment and value is a piece of our lives that only God can truly filly and satisfy.

10.03.2015

Everyday Blessings // 38


>> spontaneous 5-hour road trip
>> reuniting with a friend I haven't seen in over a year
>> visiting Ashland shop, restaurants and cafes
>> giving leftover lunch food to a homeless hippy
>> putting finishing touches on my poetry collection manuscript
>> spending over $20 on loose leaf tea (so happy!!)
>> getting to see another one of the 7 Wonders of Oregon - Crater Lake
>> leading worship at a church
>> hour long chats with a friend I haven't talked to in a long time
>> getting my friend hooked on 'Sherlock'
>> being greeted by all my family when I finally got back home
>> still planning my Peru trip
>> journaling
>> continuing my sabbatical (one month to go!)
>> accountability partners - having one and being one
>> cool nights, warm pajamas, hot tea, and cozy bed

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Can you believe it's October already??  What are you looking forward to this month?  What was one of your favorite memories of September?