2.05.2016

Yet beautiful...

Instead of typing out all of the things that were boiling in me and that I wanted to just say and not care if they were hurtful, I chose not to. Because that's not my heart. My heart has nothing but good intentions. Those words aren't who I am or who that person is. Those words won't make a difference. Those words would only cause destruction and hurt. Those words would linger in my mind with regret. Those words weren't worth wasting my breath.  

In times of frustration and hurt, we are faced with two options; to say what we are feeling in that moment or to take a deep breath and know we shouldn't always say what we are feeling. Anger brings feelings of lies. Anger brings words that are hurtful. You can apologize all you want, but you cannot take the words back. They haunt. 

Maybe you got let go from a job, maybe a friend betrayed you and just hurt you more than you thought possible, or maybe someone woke up one morning and decided they didn't want to be with you or even worse, they knew they didn't want to be with you but they continued to stay...whatever it was or is, it's okay.

In the hurt you feel, in the anger that boils in you, God is working. God is doing something.
 God is taking care of it all. 

Aligning up your path to His so you can walk out what He has planned. 
It hurts, I know. It hurts so bad. And you think the hurt won't be leaving anytime soon. You replay scenarios over and over and over again in your mind- wondering what you could have done differently. Dissecting every single word that was spoken...just looking for meaning in each one. But you're not going to find meaning in the words. You won't find any answers at all. A lot of times in life we will never get answers for certain situations. You just have to accept that. You have to just trust God and who He is and know He has a plan for you. 

Put the phone down. Get off of Instagram and Facebook and Snapchat. Stop constantly refreshing just looking for a sign of life. Just stop. Press into God. Spend time with Him and just let Him give you peace and guidance for the situation.

He is the only one who can take away your hurt. He is the only one that will comfort you when all you receive is silence. He is the only one that will be there when you lose people. 
He IS the ONLY. 

Whatever battle you are facing today, I am praying for you. I myself am facing a battle, but with encouragement and prayers and spending time with God, I am full of peace. I know that I am on the path He wants me on. I know that all of this is coming together for my good. For His glory. 

Don't be discouraged. Remind yourself that these struggles and pains have a purpose! That God is using them in your life to promote you! He is taking away the good and replacing it with the great. Trust. 

Your worth is not defined on that relationship, that friendship, or that job. Your worth has nothing to do with why that person walked away. You have meaning. You have purpose. There is better coming. 

Don't let the bitterness that the enemy provides for you, get used. Know your heart. Know what's in your heart. Evaluate it. If your heart is full of kindness, then let the kindness flow. (Stand up for yourself, of course, but that doesn't require ugliness.)

There is so much joy in these circumstances you are facing... The Lord is with you each and every step of the way. 

Lord, You have saved me from the empty things I use to chase. 

"and perhaps the butterfly is proof that you can go through a great deal of darkness, yet become something beautiful." 
{ credits: Sarah McCallister }


1.26.2016

His

Not good enough.
You're not good enough.
While your list of abilities is impressive, we've found someone who better fits our needs...aka You're not good enough.

You're not good enough.

These 4 words. 
They haunt us.
They eat their way into our brains and continually replay themselves over and over and over again.
Making you believe them.
Turning situations into what they're not. 

I know I've heard them...many times. Have you? How did you feel? How do you feel when you think about those words?

I'm pretty sure I've heard those 4 words more in the last month than I have in my life.

Applying for jobs after graduation...application after application....it's either silence received or "while you're very impressive, we've found someone else to fit our needs.."...YOU'RE NOT GOOD ENOUGH. 

These words. 
Once you are told this, you never forget it. 
While you may think you've forgotten it and you think you are good enough, one day a situation arises and these thoughts start producing other thoughts in your mind. Whether it's not getting invited to a social gathering with friends, or not being asked to be apart of an event, not getting a job, not getting what you think you deserve, someone else being chosen over you.... these simple little things are turned and twisted into something totally different. And we react. We react in ways we never thought were possible for ourselves. We jump to conclusions, we say things hastily. We get hot and our heart races and we just want to scream or cry....or both.
It's discouraging. It hurts. It's a feeling only the worst words can describe. It's raw.

These 4 words have power. 
If we believe them long enough, they will have power over us.
They will destroy us. 

But, if we remind ourselves of who we are and whose we are , well, that's the game changer. 

God says we are HIS.
We were made in HIS image. 
We were hand woven. We were made specifically for a purpose.
We were each made unique.
We were each made with flaws. Flaws that make us beautiful.

The enemy will be the one who uses those 4 words to destroy you. 
BUT, we have God's word to remind us of how worthy and good we truly are...


"I am born of God, and the evil one does not touch me" -1 John 5:18

"I have the Greater One living in me; greater is He Who is in me than he who is in the world"
1 John 4:4

"I am God’s workmanship, created in Christ unto good works" -Ephesians 2:10

And when you have a past that haunts you, remember this:

I am a new creature in Christ -2 Corinthians 5:17

When those words creep in and you feel uneasy, you CAN overcome.
The world does not define you. The world may tell you that you're not good enough, but the world's opinions do not matter. 
The God who placed the stars in the sky and knows them all, created YOU. He loves you. He wants you. 
You are HIS.
You are good enough.


I am the daughter of a KING
Who is not moved by the world
For my God is WITH ME &
Goes BEFORE ME
I do NOT FEAR
Because I AM
HIS


Photo Credits: Sarah McCallister



1.16.2016

But God...

So, what do you do when you're just not your "normal" self? And by normal, I mean, the you that feels good. The you that has thoughts that add to the quality of your life. The you who doesn't live in constant fear. The you who can breathe. 

For the past week, I have lived in constant fear. A constant fear that makes me sick. When a daily drive home took a turn for the worst, I also took a turn. I literally live in a constant fear full of anxiety. Someone leaves the house and I am overcome with anxiety. Me driving all the back roads avoiding the interstate to get where I am going, still full of anxiety. They say the odds of getting hit by an 18 wheeler again are slim to none...but tell that to the guy who was struck like 9 different times by lightening...(Yes, its in the Guinness book for 2015). 

You see, I now have a feeling of what goes through someone's mind right before they die. After getting hit and my car spinning down the interstate, I looked up and all I could see was the concrete wall and I just knew that was it. I just knew it was about to happen. I was going to die. And the person on the other end of the phone was listening and would be haunted forever. But God...

But God.

But God. 

But God. 

But God stopped my car from hitting that wall. With just enough room between the car and the wall to squeeze out of the passenger door of my car. God had His angels and hands around me as that 18 wheeler was pushing me t-bone style down the interstate. God was directing my car as it was spinning through the 
6: 25pm traffic on the interstate and cars where dodging me. God. God. God. 

You guys. I'm not really sure I can find the words to tell you what my heart feels now...what my heart wants to say. I just can't find the words.  I don't think the word Thankful even touches what I want to say. But thankful, I am.

I feel like mentally and emotionally I should be better by now. One week later. It shouldn't bother me to be behind the wheel. It shouldn't bother me to pass an 18 wheeler. It shouldn't bother me. But it terrifies me. Terrifies me. I can't breathe. My heart stops and then races uncontrollably. Tears stream without me even realizing it. Loud noises bring me to a halt. I stop breathing and start sweating. 
Then I have to remind myself that I am okay. I am safe. 

I feel like an annoyance to others. I feel like they think I am being dramatic. I want to say "well, you try being hit by an 18 wheeler twice, and then having it push you down the interstate and all you can see is the grill of the 18 wheeler, and then your car sliding down the side of the 18 wheeler, and then spinning across lanes of traffic and all you see is that a concrete wall is what is going to stop the car."...But, I would never ever want that for anyone...

The fact of the matter is, is that I am going to have to take my time. And by that, I don't mean months and months and years. I mean just some time. Some time to really grasp that I have to keep living life and having quality thoughts. I can't live in constant fear of it happening again. I can't keep not doing things I want to do because I am terrified of driving on the interstate. I mean, I could, but then I would only be making myself miserable and missing out on so much. 

It occurred to me that night when I finally grasped what really happened, that God isn't done with me yet. I still have a purpose. I still have a path to walk out the plan that He has for my life. I am still breathing. I am not hurt. I am healthy. I am wanted. And I am loved. 

I think many of us can relate to this. There is something in our lives that we are scared of. Something that we let hinder us. Life wasn't meant for us to live it like that. 

Just remember that God isn't done with YOU yet. 
HE has a plan for you.

Take your time healing. Take your time facing what you fear. There's not a timeline to be okay. The people who care and love you, will be there with you. They will understand and they will do what they can to encourage and help. I am so thankful I have people like that in my life. Patient, understanding, and loving. 


God didn't bring you this far to abandon you.

When I am afraid, I will trust in you. -Psalm 56:3

10.25.2015

always hopes and perseveres

Has your world shifted lately? Could be a big shift, a little shift...any size of shift. Either way, it's a shift. And when our worlds shift, it's uneasy, it's weird, it's hard, it's sad, it's exciting. I am sure the list could go on. Shifts in our world means that God is just working in your life. 

My world has shifted. Right now, it seems like a gigantic shift. A shift that I can't quite grab hold of. Right when I feel like I catch my footing, I fall back down. I get back up, only to fall back down again. My world has shifted before, many many many many many times. But this shift is different. I can't tell you how or why. But I can tell you that it just, it's different. My heart is aching a different ache than it's ever experienced. I'm not sure what ache this is or why it's different. But it's different. None like before. And I think that is why this seems so huge and just like I can't get my grip...all while reminding myself multiple times a day to breathe. Constantly trying to smile when I feel the tears coming. And always shooting down the thoughts that try to creep into my mind. Not so great yet, but I'm working on it. I don't know what is going to happen. I have hope.

I think the biggest thing for me is that, I am scared. There are so many things going on in my life right now. I graduate college in almost a month exactly. I really honestly have no clue what I want to do. My classes this semester are so overwhelming. But somehow I have come back from the pits and have been taking care of business in them. I just have so many changes that are coming. I am soon to enter a new phase of life and the people I want with me, may not go with me into that phase...and it breaks my heart. Now my heart has hurt before. All of our hearts have hurt at one point or another in our lives. But this is the pain that you can feel. You feel it in your chest and your mind, and you have to catch your breath. It's a scary pain. I never thought that I'd be where I am today at 26 years old. Not even in the same book. I always imagined I'd be married with babies by now. But God had other plans for me, and that my friends, I am so thankful for. But that is what is the scariest of all. I have no idea where my life is going, or what God is doing. My little heart is so confused and it just wants to have that familiar hug that it's come to find comfort in. But it can't have that hug. 

God will definitely turn your world upside down and all around in order to fit the puzzle piece in. 

He's working in my heart, and He is working in your heart.I believe that 100 percent. No doubt about it. I know He is. And I know that this work that's being done in our hearts is just to set up for things to come. To take the hurt that's been held onto, and to heal it. To refresh your mind and your soul. To give you rest and peace. To make you feel complete again and able to open up. What's in the past is in the past. People in the past, stay in the past. We learn from the past. We figure out who we want, what we want, and then we stick to that because we know. Confusion will come but....

I've learned recently to not make permanent decisions based on temporary feelings, temporary emotions, and temporary changes.  Prayer is what you should do when those temporary things crawl into your mind and your heart. God is the only one that can bring clarity and direction.

I'm not really sure how this phase of life I am in is going to end and enter into the new phase. I don't know who is going to be with me and who will have to stay in my heart only. All I know is that I have loved in this phase. 

If you're reading this, I hope you're in my next phase. I hope that you're one of the people I get to share my heart with. My struggles, my excitement, my fear, my love,. my laughs and my tears, my life...I want to share that with you. And, if you're not in my next phase, just know that there will always be a place in my heart that is only for you. My heart and my soul have smiled bigger than they ever have. I have laughed harder than I ever have and I was fearless. Adventures were made wherever life was that day. And my memories are stored in my heart. I have loved with my whole heart. For the first time in my life, I was actually living for the day and that, I am thankful for.

Friends, just remember that when your world is rocked and shifted, to just hold on tight. Hold on to God's promises. HE is what and who will keep you steady.  Things may look hopeless now or like they can't be fixed...but they can be! 
Restored and renewed. 

No matter what happens in your life, never stop loving. 

 Remember, love always hopes and always perseveres.

10.22.2015

Let them know

I'm not really sure where to begin. All I know is that life isn't fair. And that unfair things happen to people. And what is really sad, is that people don't think about what happens when they make certain decisions. Why? Because they only think about themselves. They don't think about the other person involved, they don't think about those around them. But that's okay because we are human. We, are our first priority. 

I've learned in the years that actions truly do speak louder than words. 
I've learned that my heart is in fact, going to hurt. And tears will come. 
I've learned that not everyone who says they will be there, are there. 
And I've learned that some people may not be the best at explaining emotion or helping others understand something, and that's okay. 

Let's just say that, my heart is hurting. And nothing is really making it feel better. I'm not really sure how people can just close a door that you've been standing in. Just patiently, so very patiently, waiting in. Sometimes I think that the heart God gave me was meant for someone else. How can I, of all people, deal with things that are in my path? I look back at trials and struggles before, and remember so vividly how I felt during those times. But this, this is a different feeling. It's a feeling that's so wrong and so scary. Life really does pass us by so quickly. And I've learned that people aren't in your life forever. So to really appreciate the people that are in your life, while they are in your life. To realize that it is okay to be cared for. It is okay to let people love you and be there for you. Even if that's something you're not very used to. Or if it's just been so long since you've had people like that in your life... it's okay to be afraid. But don't let your fear drive you away from something that is good. 

As I sit here on my bed, a big t shirt, a messy ponytail, and tears streaming down my face uncontrollably, I am just overwhelmed. So much emotion, so much fear, and so much hope. There is so much to be thankful for and so many reasons to smile, but yet tonight, my heart is choosing to let some tears out. Confusion isn't something I would wish on anyone. It's not a good feeling, it's a state of numbness,..that's what I believe confusion is, You think one thing but yet it's not that...it's something completely different and it just leaves you  in a state of numbness. Just know that God is not the author of confusion. We don't always get answers we ask for, but we do get the answers that He wants us to have. I am thankful. My heart is thankful. 

Tonight, before you go to sleep, make sure the people that you care about, know that you care. 
Whether it's a simple hug or a goodnight text.
 I don't care if you are angry with them, or not speaking, or laying right next to them..just make sure they know...because you never know if their tomorrow or your tomorrow is guaranteed. 
And a life full of regret is not a life you want. 

10.12.2015

What I want

I turned 26 on Saturday. 26. . 
Here lately, I've really taken a step back and evaluated my life. Who I am, who I feel God created me to be. Where I'm going, what I was made to do. 

I wasn't made to be a people pleaser.
I wasn't made to live my life according to other's opinions.
I was made to love.
I was made to be a light. 
I was made to share my heart.

But sometimes, like usual with life, our actions don't match up to our hearts. We feel one way but act a different way. Afraid of being judged by the world. Afraid of not being accepted. Afraid that we might mess up. Stumble over our words, forget our purpose. You name it, we will find a way to be afraid of it. 

I've realized that my heart is big. I've felt emotion my whole entire life. I've always been an emotional person. But lately, I was doubting some things. Like is it a bad thing that I feel things so strongly? Is it a bad thing that when I love others, I really love them? Or how about this one: does God really have a purpose for how my heart feels and reacts and yearns?  No, no, and yes, Those are my answers. 

So this is what I've come to...

I want my heart to be beautiful. So beautiful. That when people look at me, they actually see a beautiful heart. A heart that is so in love with it's creator. The creator of the universe. The One that knows all the stars in the skies and each strand of hair on my head. The One who intricately wove me together. The One who placed my passions in my heart. My fears, The One who loves me..forever and always. I want my heart to be beautiful because others see God's light.They see His love. 
I want them to see that my heart cries for others who are not as fortunate as me.
I want them to see the love....
For the hurting, and the healed. 
For the ones who are alone. Feeling so forsaken. 
For the ones who are so totally confused about who they are...because the world has told them to be a certain way or they won't be accepted. 
For the ones who have no idea what God is doing in their lives but that they know there is a blessing coming after the storm they are walking through. 

**I don't want these things to show to others to be like "hey look at me"..
I want these things to show, because they can start a fire in someone else's heart. To strike a chord that reveals a passion they didn't realize they had. 

I just want love to radiate from my heart. The mornings that I wake up and my mood isn't exactly great, and I want to be rude to my mother, my sister, or someone dear to me- I want to make the decision to change that..I can't show love through a bad attitude. 

When you see a beautiful heart, a beautiful soul...you don't ever forget it. 
The light that radiates off of love is intoxicating.
I want to seek God continually. Never ever stopping. I want to be full of HIS love.  

I have a feeling that my 26th year is going to be a year of unexpected. A year where I am put in even more awe and astonishment of my God. Life will change this year.. how do I know? Well, every year, life changes. Every day it changes. But God doesn't. He never changes. He's steady and constant...unlike the world today.

The past year, I have watched God take things from ashes and make them beautiful. I have stood there banging on doors that He closed only to finally realize that they were closed for a reason. I've watched plans unfold on my journey just in the last year. I've lost ones I loved and I've gained people to love. It was a pretty amazing year. 

My goal for my 26th year is to become more of the woman God created me to be and intended for me to be. To find my purpose. I want to become more and more like the Proverbs 31 woman.
I want my heart to show God's love. 

So,

Welcome to my year of discovering. 


8.19.2015

it's like a summer storm..

Anxiety.
It't not a joke, it's not just some excuse..it's real and it's a battle.

Around this time last year, or a few weeks off, I decided to share and talk about my battle with depression. It wasn't easy, at all. But it's something that I know I don't face alone. 

If you haven't read that post, you can read it here

Since that post it has been a rollercoaster of a battle. Somedays I am great and other days I am not so great. I chose the route and got off my medication for it..I really believed that it was something I could learn to overcome. With time it has gotten easier but there are still some days. 

Along with depression came anxiety. I never really realized it. 
In the last several months my anxiety has been something out of this world. Thankfully, I have a great support system of people who listen, who care, and who love me. These people are patient with me. I know when I send 7 texts in a row with my thoughts that they may be slightly irritated, but they don't let that affect how they respond. I am thankful for this. I am thankful for them.

Anxiety is an evil thing. It can ruin many many things..friendships, relationships, daily life..the quality of life. It rules your thoughts and your emotions. It's like a summer storm almost. Creeps up unexpectedly and BAM hits hard, does some damage and then rolls on out like it was nothing...only to return later.

Simple statements spoken by someone get super twisted and turn into something so negative, when it wasn't a negative statement to begin with. Anxiety makes your mind feel crazy..out of sorts. It makes you feel not normal..like there is something wrong with you. 

Many times I think to myself, why can't I just be normal? Why do I have to live in constant fear? In an uncomfortable state of being?  Constantly wondering if that next text message that comes through is the end all of something. Or that phone call is just bad news waiting to be dropped on you. Anxiety brings such a negative style to your life. And you want to be positive. You want to be happy and feel free and relieved of it. But it just comes back. Your mind plays tricks on you. Makes you think things that were never even thought up in the situation at hand. It's rough. 

An anxious heart weighs a man down, but a kind word cheers him up. -proverbs 12:25

Thankfully, I'm not alone in this. A very close friend of mine struggles with anxiety too..and it's always so comforting to have each other to text or call. We've sat and talked on the phone forever about some tiny little thing that wasn't anything at all, but my mind made it a big deal and turned it into a volcano. She patiently sits and listens and then helps me back down off of that thought. And vice versa with her texting me or calling me to help her. And in all of this helping one another I've realized that anxiety is something I can overcome. Something that she can overcome. Something that you can overcome. I'll give her words of advice and it's almost like something clicks for not only her but for me as well. If only I would listen to myself. 

We have it in us to beat this. I fully trust that we do. It's just how badly do you want to beat it? How badly do you want to be able to change that thought process when it starts? 

It's gotten to the point where when I feel anxiety creeping in and I feel my thought process starting to take a dive, I make it a point to try my best to stop it. I make it a point to take a deep breath and a step back and be rational. To look at whatever the situation or tiny thing it is and break it down...and to be logical and state the facts. And today for instance, she noticed that in a conversation we were having. It felt so good to know that I am making progress. Some days it'll be easy. Some days it will be really super super super tough. But it's possible

 Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God.
 And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.- Philippians 4:6-7 

My relationship with The Lord has grown even more in these last few months. I'm so thankful that that is a relationship that doesn't have a limit. Doesn't have a "fill to" line. It just goes deeper and deeper and deeper. And I know that God has had His hand in this process. He steadies my crazy beating heart and He brings a calm and a peace when I start to feel anxious.

I know it's not easy living with someone who battles this. We wake up in constant fear. Fear of someone leaving us, fear of not being good enough, fear of someone changing their mind, fear of being hurt...fear of many many things. SO, I just want to say thank you to the people who choose me on a daily basis. Who choose to love me, support me, care for me, and to listen to me. Who choose to be a part of my life. Words will never be able to tell you how thankful I am for you guys.

 They will have no fear of bad news; their hearts are steadfast, trusting in the Lord.-Psalm 112:7 

photo credits: Sarah McCallister