Being Brave

I have been so blessed by her books and I feel so honored that my words are featured on her blog.

Annie is a wonderful woman of God and someone I look up to and can count on to lead me to His feet with some real tough girl issues.

Thank you so much, Annie. 🙂 I have been reminded of how important and empowering it is to encourage women to talk about being brave!

To read my story, head on over here.

Hello again, (blogging) world!

It has been a painful few months, learning to cope with loss and stress and major life changes, so I’ve been laying low and devoting time to prayer and recovery. There are some wonderful little treasures that have helped me in my journey toward healing and I’d love to share them with you.

Books are my go-to companions during tough times and here are some lovelies.

1. Let’s all be brave : Annie F Downs

2. What your heart needs for the hard days : Holley Gerth

3. Gone Girl : Gillian Flynn

4. msrosiebea on YouTube. Her makeup channel is fantastic!!! (sorry couldn’t link up to the video on YouTube, because this computer is a bit funny, just type “msrosiebea” in the search bar and enjoy)

5. The Londoner Blog So gorgeous. So delicious. So London.

6. Ballet Beautiful and FitnessBlender Kickboxing workouts. These are two different workouts but both really great for toning your body to look lean (Ballet Beautiful) and not to mention, therapeutic (Kickboxing 😉 )

Top these off with some great coffee and chocolate lava cookies (or any cookies, really) and prayer of course and you’ll be feeling better in no time. 🙂

Day 8: SAY

I can still feel the scars. The ones I try so hard to hide, glossing over them with quick wit (usually) or loud guffaws. I never quite forget them though. How do you? The medicinal sweet words that are taken back, the promises that fall short, the blazing angry fire? How do you undo the sins of your tongue that is just as slippery and poisonous as that snake in Eden, the same slimy lies that wind your heart the wrong way and twist your precious will?

It is so difficult, both to erase the past and to speak in love and humility. It is a battle fought everyday but let me tell you, if you are growing tired, PLEASE hold on, it is so worth it. We may never be able to have complete all-time control over our tongues on this side of Heaven (don’t panic!) but Jesus came down here and he knows mighty well the struggles we have to face and the pressures and tribulations of this earthly life. So don’t try to go at it alone, ask Him for help.

Before you say the thing you are dreading, before you say the things you shouldn’t and when you want courage to say the right thing, STOP and say a quick little prayer first. Ask Him to direct your words.

Then boldly say what he places on your tongue. I will be cheering you on in prayer and I hope that you will do the same for me.

Linking up here.

Currently {Volume 5}

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THINKING || about being faithful with the little things. It’s so important to just.get.started. I am trying so hard to be diligent and intentional with the everyday things like exercising, being healthy and learning while being loving and positive.

LISTENING || to the clickety clack of my keyboard and Phillip Phillips again (I cannot get gone, gone, gone out of my head, it is SO romantic!)

DOING || I am beginning a course on game theory at Coursera.com! I have been waiting for this for weeks and I cannot wait to start! Also just signed up for the blessed is she devotionals and I am looking forward to more meaningful (and extended) prayer time thanks to these beautiful devotionals.

THANKFUL FOR || About the wonderful gift of life and just being able to breathe and dance and sing and read and all these little but incredibly important everyday blessings that we can enjoy! I am SO grateful to be alive and happy!

Join/Hop on over to the Currently series link-up?

Five Minute Friday {New}

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I see the clouds fade, they were so dark and compelling. Now I see just plain clear sky. It’s the same old sky that transitions from coal black to sunflower orange to baby blue to lipstick pink to midnight blue and then back to black. The old sky is somehow birthed new and evokes new thoughts, expressions and wonder from the depth of my aching soul. There is transition everywhere you look, leaves turning over, puppies shedding hair, babies learning to walk, the elderly forgetting their keys. As the earth tumbles each day around its ring, we change. We are made new. We are presented with this as a gift. And by the loving grace of God, we are also bestowed the transormative power of the renewing of our minds (Romans 12:2).

New is different, new is scary, new is sometimes clean and sometimes confusing.
God himself made everything new, abolishing old laws, practises and traditions. I don’t know if you are struggling with embracing change or are unwilling to let go of the past that binds you or actions and habits that hold you back.

That was the ‘old’ you, step now into the new. Live in the ‘now’, for that is the ‘new’ that God has given you. Abandon all fear, everything here is new and fresh and god-given. Remember that whatever is ‘new’ to you is something He already ‘knows’.

Godly women

I have thought many times about writing a post such as this.

A while ago, a girl that I used to know very well when I was really really young, sent me a text message telling me my facebook profile was ‘indecent’. Just to clarify, there is nothing about alcohol on there, nor any indecent exposure or foul language. I was simply wearing shorts in a photograph that my friend (who is studying photography) had taken of me for a assignment. She went on to criticize me and I listened quietly, until she poked at my faith. The girl who launched her unnecessary tirade is from a small town (as am I) and thinks herself to be a very very godly young lady.

Before you conclude that this post is to badmouth her and to justify myself, please bear with me.

Jesus loves you and Jesus loves me. He loves her too. Women are intrinsically nurturers, lovers, mothers, artists and anchors. And while these are characteristics of all of us, we do each of these things differently. We are so quick to pass judgement and to divide each other on the very subjects that should unite and bind us together. Why do we do it? I don’t claim to be any different, I have caught myself thinking and saying things that are insensitive and hurtful to other women.

Could we maybe consider that what makes a godly woman is just that : God placed in and ahead of her. And isn’t that enough for us to appreciate and exalt her every effort, although it may be different from what we are used to?

Can we, as a mature community of God’s daughters learn to accept women who love God: yes, all their gifts, art, pasts and weaknesses? Can we look just at the heart, the part that loves God and let our first instinct be to motivate rather than mock, love rather than laugh at, empower rather than embarrass and build rather than break?

Can we pray for the strength to do this? Together.

Currently {Volume 4}

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Thinking about // the blessings that I so often take for granted: my passions that I let sit unattended, my heart that I neglect, my body that I treat like a stranger, and friends that I neglect and the bad habits that I have fostered and grown into full looming terrors. I am becoming increasingly aware that it is my responsibility to take care of treasure these things God has placed within me and within my reach. Every day, I must wrestle with my inclination to procrastinate and laze around.
Listening to // Gone, gone, gone by Phillip Phillips. It’s such a sweet, romantic song. Through the week, I listened to Casting Crowns’ album Thrive and it has a beautiful collection of songs!
Reading// A million little ways (Emily p freeman) and the time travelers wife (Audrey Niffenegger) and both are tugging gently at my heart to live and love with intention and passion.
Thankful for // Answered prayers and restored health. It seems every time I partake in this beautiful link-up, I am less than my usual self. But I am gradually making small changes toward focusing on my health and wellness. Also thankful for my little adopted puppy, Wally, who is so loving and animated and always making me smile.
Loving // this great website with courses that are so wonderful and inspiring! I am beginning a self-paced course on Competitive Strategy today and I am really looking forward to it. Also loving that the flowers I planted on Wednesday are in happy bloom 🙂

Linking up with amamacollective

A love affair

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The cold rolls off my shoulder and I rub my palms together in glee. I stand facing a warm fluttering skirt of ocean that extends, twirls and teases coasts all over this great big world and today, my little feet. Oh, the joy! To feel the salty kisses tickle my toes and the wind hug me, undoing the tense, tangled strings of my heart. It won’t be long before I fall (quite literally) head over heels. I am intensely aware of my imperfect smallness relative to the great, indescribable beauty of his creation. And yet, I don’t quite understand. He looked at all of creation and deemed it good but after He created us, He exclaimed it was very good (Gen 1:31). Have I got it all backwards? Could it be that I am bigger and somehow more valuable than this gurgling, exquisite ocean? He called me beautiful. He breathed his life in me. Not in this magnificent ocean, that breathtaking mountain or that delicate finely dressed bird. Me. Even as I am writing this, I can feel my heart quicken and my eyes grow wet. My love affair isn’t with the coquettish sea but its Creator. He gave this ocean to me, and I see it afresh as symbolic of his deep, unending love. I tuck this moment warm in my heart and in treasuring this truth, I feel His hands slip into mine.

Linking up with the Still Saturday community

Five Minute Friday {Hold}

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Suddenly everything is different. People have drawn conclusions, drifted apart, returned home. I stand in a world of uncertainty. Things change. All of the time. I am constantly trying to grasp, adjust and adapt. It is exhausting.

Shifting equations leave me nauseous, craving for that warm me-shaped dent I left in my bed this morning.

Economists have this caveat that they love (and I’m one so I am fascinated by it as well), “all else being equal” or “ceteris paribus” if you insist on being pedantic. And this constant condition is key to forecasting, as setting a constant enables scientists or investigators to dig deeper into other interesting areas. The constant tethers them yet enables their ideas to take flight. Ah, that kind of equation I could begin to love. And economics isn’t such a dull subject after all now, is it?

In the messy equation of life, Jesus is constant. The Bible tells me so (Big hug if that is one of your favourite songs too!). He holds me firm and assures me that He will never leave nor forsake me (Deut 31:6), and that allows me a unbelievable freedom.

In his warm graceful embrace, I recieve permission to go out into this world and explore. Without a constant, an equation is usually a random mix of confusing values yielding inconclusive, unreliable results. Without Him, I am a bumbling mess.

The constant nature of God’s love dulls the chaos and sets me on a clear path toward clarity of thought and action.

It is like a root, allowing me to spread my arms and reach toward the heavens. He not only allows me freedom but provides me with direction and strength.

I am held front-centre in His gaze (Ps. 32:8) and etched in the palm of His hand (Is 49:16).

Jesus being who He is, unchanging and forever, that is a truth I can hold on to. Because He held me first. And holds all things together.

Linking up with Five Minute Friday today.

Currently {Volume 3}

 

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Thinking about: The beautiful gift of communion. My weekend was filled with lovely things (buying cupcakes at a park with my two lovely cousin sisters, hanging out with my mamma, long overdue skype conversations with friends who live (toooo) far away), allowing me to engage and reconnect with beautiful people. I am convinced that God is at the heart of all of these relationships and I am so grateful to have a wonderful group of lovely people in my life.

Reading: Graceful and The Museum of Innocence by Orhan Pamuk. I loved reading regularly immensely through college but sadly, allowed distractions to get in the way after so I am glad that I am consciously making time to read more.

Loving: This AWESOME bible study. I am also loving that I got to work super early today to get a head start on work and writing and I am glad that my week is starting off on a great note! 🙂

Looking forward to: Planning a great vacation with one of my friends from graduate school whom I haven’t seen in 3 years! Also, cleaning my room and organizing my closet so that I can de-clutter and donate.

 

Linking up with amamacollective!

A Mama Collective