A Dream or Reality?

In a nutshell, I am the worlds most indecisive person ever. 

Senior year of high school, I remember one occurring  question. 

"What are your plans after graduation?"

Honestly, I didn't know and I most certainly did not want to just apply for a community college with no passion & then drop out at some point where I've lost my will power to drag myself into the unknown. I've seen it happen plenty of times. So I thought I'd take a year to just work & figure out who or what I wanted to be. 

A year came by so quickly. Then 4 years, then 5, and now I've been out of school for over 10 years. How did that happen?!

Its strange. For a season there, I was inspired to go into beauty school & become a cosmetologist. I enjoyed the thought of pampering others. After that I fell in love with children. I committed to working in a day care center, as a nanny, family assistant, and a local non profit shelter for women & children over the course of 7 years. I absolutely loved it! Don't get me wrong. Through my infertility God had gave me fresh eyes to see that He was using me to love & care for children in this season.

I even considered pursuing education in Early Childhood Development. But I still felt unsure. For some reason, just in the depth of my soul, I could just feel something else budding. Through out these past 12 years, a small but constant passion was rising & I just wasn't sure where it would lead me. Was it just a hobby? An obligation? Or a dream? A vision? I found myself creating, planning, & decorating events, weddings, and parties. Opportunities that brought out the R E A L me. Styling hair and makeup for friends, curating arrangements for photography, and just about anything that inspired me to inject my creativity into it. 

It wasn't just the fact that I loved being able to share my gift of creativity but it was also being able to bless others with it. To pour my heart & soul into special projects & to see people just receive it with so much joy & to essentially be blessed, that's it. And after every event and opportunity, I had a sense of purpose & passion. I found joy & contentment even in the midst of the chaos that comes with planning anything that had to do with community, good conversations, & service. I love infusing beauty and intricacy into everything that God allows to fall in my path, taking great care of it, knowing that it’ll only last for a moment.

dreams becoming reality

I can honestly say that I don't regret the years in between. The short but long years of the nitty-gritty. I believe that in order for us to come to a place where we can embrace ourselves and whom God has created us to be, we have to go through trials & testings. I know my prayers haven't been completely answered yet. But why do I have to be unfaithful on my part, even if I'm still in a season of waiting? I also believe that our dreams and desires can align with God's purpose for us. I'm so glad that I didn't give in to peer pressure & just pursued a degree of some sort right after high school. Where I stand, I see a BIG God. And I believe that my dreams are not impossible. They may seem far fetched. But my God is Greater. 

I may not have a business in event/wedding planning or own my own craft studio. I may not be a certified teacher or a professional make-up artist. But I know in due time, God will open doors that no man can shut. He will continue bringing opportunities in every season that I remain dreaming & trusting. I believe it. My God promises me that He can make my dreams a reality. I trust in Him and I believe that if I'm faithful on my part, He will be faithful on His. I'm willing to just give my all & let Him do the rest. 

I believe that this year, He is moving me in a much more bold & courageous direction. That means doing something I don't feel too comfortable about. Jotting down an action plan. Setting doable goals for myself & letting Him take care of the undo-able. Saying yes to the best opportunities. Connecting & surrounding myself in a community that will encourage me to spread my wings & grow. But most importantly, to be moving in expectation. We can move closer to Gods will that way. 

I received encouragement from a new friend I met & she said something that really convicted me to dive-in all or nothing.

So here goes nothing. I'd rather live trying than not at all. Are you still dreaming? What are your dreams? Will you dare to dream BIG with me? Will you work towards those dreams & make them a reality?

Lets do this together. 

“God expects you to have enough faith and determination and enough trust in Him to keep moving, keep living, keep rejoicing. In fact, He expects you not simply to face the future; He expects you to embrace and shape the future--to love it and rejoice in it and delight in your opportunities. God is anxiously waiting for the chance to answer your prayers and fulfill your dreams, just as He always has. But He can't if you don't pray, and He can't if you don't dream. In short, He can't if you don't believe.” - Jeffrey R. Holland

Are You in a Season of Waiting?

Good Morning, you may have found yourself in a season of waiting. Whether it be for a new job, new opportunity, a long awaited child, or the return of a loved one. Maybe not by choice nor by plan. But by God's plan. I know how hard that may be. To completely have full trust in Him. It's easier said than done. It seems impossible right? Trust me, there are days where infertility leaves me feeling so lost & confused. Thankfully the Holy Spirit works in us & around us daily. Boy oh boy, do I need His daily reminders. 

Trust in the Lord

If you find yourself in a season of complete stillness & you're having to learn to wait on the Lord, I hope some of these truths encourage you today.

 

Prayer is important.

But most times, we're so desperate for quick answers from the Lord, that our prayers become desperate demands. Often times, it even seems as if our prayers aren't being heard nor answered and this results in feeling like our faith is fading away. We have to be careful not to force God's name under our "genius" thoughts & ideas. A lot of times, we somehow think of things and assume that maybe God himself has never thought of yet. This is where our human nature kicks in. We roll on out with every possibility of a solution for our situations. But have we ever thought that maybe, just maybe, this might just be a Divine Delay? That maybe there is a purpose in our waiting? 

It doesn't take faith to help God, it takes faith to believe in His promises.

We so often think that we somehow have a say in what God is doing in our lives. We can believe in Him as much as we claim we do, but faith comes in the seasons of trials & tribulations. When you've lost all control or hope for what's to come. I mean, faith would not exist if everything went perfectly the way we wanted it to be. It's when we're at our wits end that we see God most glorified. In the midst of confusion & pain, what does it look like to believe that there is hope? We have hope. His name is Jesus. Our faith grows when we remember to cling on to His promises. Remember, its not about our performance that matters, its His promise. And if you don't know what His promises are for you in this season, then I encourage you to pray & ask God to reveal a Bible sibling that you can resonate with to help you better understand what God can also do for you. 

Remember, He is the same Yesterday, Today, & Forever!

 

Divine Plan.

This season of barrenness in any area of your life could just very well be a divine plan for you to find some time of solitude with Him. When your plans don't work out, God wants to use your disappointment as an opportunity to transform you according to His divine plan.

 He wants us to experience complete dependency on Him, away from all the noise & chaos of the world. Therefore at times, we feel like we're in a barren land. All we see is complete wilderness and at times we see it as if it were a curse of some sort. But the thought that maybe God has something beautiful planned out never crosses our mind. It is a true testing of the heart when we're in a barren land. We can never be fully prepared for where God wants to take us until we are at peace with where God has us currently. Embrace where you're at. Rest in the assurance of knowing that your God has more power than anything else you may face in the wilderness. 

"In order for you to pursue the plans that I have for you, I have to break you down to the core element and the understanding that you are nothing without me. Because my grace is sufficient & my power will be perfected in your weakness." - GOD

I am convinced and confident of this very thing, that He who has begun a good work in you will [continue to] perfect and complete it until the day of Christ Jesus [the time of His return].- Philippians 1:6

What is something you are waiting for? What are you learning in this season of waiting? I'd love to know & pray for you. 

Joy-full Weekend

This weekend was so eventful. Packed with so many great things. I went out with my sister for a Zumba charity fundraiser for a local children's organization. Got to see my nephews & hang out with my sisters. I had a long over due lunch date with a good friend. Dropped off starter kits at church  for the arrival of Refugees that will be arriving in our area. I had great conversations filled with laughter & tears over a delightful dinner with beautiful women. I pushed myself out of my comfort zone to be more intentional at church- catching up with fellow brothers & sisters in Christ.  

There are no words to describe how full my heart is in this current moment. If only I could just make time stand still. I feel as if I'm at the best time in my life right now. Everything feels perfect. It's impossible for perfection though. I know, I know. My weekend was packed to the brim but I don't regret any of it. As I'm typing this, I'm literally struggling to speak. I've somehow lost my voice from this awesome praise worthy weekend. Besides the soreness of my throat, I feel so optimistic & joy-full. 

I do not regret a single thing that I scheduled myself for this weekend. Why? Because every bit of it were the best decisions I could've ever made. To be in commune with people. To fellowship & hear what God is doing in the lives of others. In every moment of my weekend, I was just constantly reminded of God's unfailing love. 

Two big things also occurred this weekend though. Saturday morning I woke up to find out a relative had passed from her battle with Breast Cancer. Then, Sunday after church, Roger & I payed visit to our dear friends who are now new parents! Their baby girl had decided it was her time to make her big appearance into the world. 

From beginning to the end of this weekend, I've just seen God's gracious hands over all the overwhelming events that has happened. God calls us to mourn with those who mourn. But to also celebrate with those who celebrate.

"Rejoice with those who rejoice [sharing others’ joy], and weep with those who weep [sharing others’ grief]." -Romans 12:15 

What a blessing it is to be included in the beautiful picture God is painting with our very own lives. In a moment of grief & sorrow, God also gives us reasons to be joyful & celebrate! There is hope in Him alone. To love as He first loved us is hard. But we can begin following in His compassionate footsteps by asking God to give us His heart. To break our hearts for what breaks His. To love through His eyes. 

When people die, there is so much pain that no one but the Father can comfort. When we face what seems like the darkest season's of our lives, Jesus lights the way for us onto the Hope we can have in Him. When new doors open for us to walk through, fear & anxiety rushes in but God tugs at our hearts & says," Follow Me, & I will lead the way." 

In the midst of all that we face, I pray it may be a reminder to you that from beginning to end, God has everything in the palm of His hands. He is still in full control no matter what you face. He will raise you up & honor you. He will protect you from harm. He will heal the brokenhearted and He will be with you, holding you with a gentle & loving firm hand. 

Such beautiful promises. What ever season you are in right now, I pray that God will surround you with people who will love, embrace, listen, encourage, cry, laugh, celebrate, mourn, & pray with you. When you completely submit to Him, He will provide for you, everything you need. 

Including the very people or community you need to do life with you. 

How was your weekend? What season do you find yourself in right now? 


Who's Your Best Friend?

Roger & I have been married for 10 years now and one thing we've definitely learned is that we need friendship. 2015 was a hard year, I mean, when is life nor marriage not hard? You'll always face new challenges. I wish someone would've told us on our wedding day how important it is to stay friends in your marriage. 

I honestly don't know when we lost that important factor of our marriage, but I guess once marriage happened, it was all about figuring out how to make it through life.We stopped asking questions. Stopped getting to know each other & we began to just conform to this normality of what we thought marriage was supposed to be. A Relational Retirement. 

Last year, Roger & I literally felt like we came to a point where our marriage was going to end. Not because someone cheated or because we didn't get along. Most people I know would probably conclude & compromise at the fact that they "fell out of love" with each other. For us, it was because we didn't feel connected. Here we were, married at this point for 10 years & yet felt more distant than ever. Don't misunderstand, we love each other passionately. But at some point we stopped having conversations & fell into this autopilot setting of just going through the motions of life with no intentionality. 

It really affected us. With lots of prayers & encouragement from a close couple who knew of our struggles, we started pursing our marriage through God's eyes. We started praying for one another & for our marriage. It took time, patience, trust, & courage. Each day we stepped a little closer towards each other in our friendship. Slowly but surely, we started having more in depth conversations. It was like getting to know him all over again. Don't assume that when you get married, your spouse will remain the same person they were from the day you said "I do." 

As we grow in the years of marriage, we also mature over time. God is constantly working through us, changing & challenging us to become the best versions of ourselves to glorify Him. And so, therefore, we have to learn to embrace each others changes as well. I started to learn so many new things about him that I had never known before. And like any relationship, trust had to be nurtured into our marriage. Even though you're married to each other, the enemy knows how to pull you away from one another, influencing you to be secretive & to keep things to yourself. 

I believe that when we unite in a holy matrimony, (a marriage that is set apart from others), we ought to both know each other inside out. To see each other in a way that no other person could. To be so transparent about your life, emotions, struggles, & celebrations. The only other being that should know you so deeply would be God himself. There is something beautiful about becoming "One." In marriage, we get to experience the intertwining of 2 souls & 1 spirit. God himself blesses couples with His Holy Spirit.  Don't ever assume that marriage is only a physical life accomplishment. It's so much more than that. 

Roger & I have learned so much about what God can do through marriage. We asked God to teach us to communicate well, to be open & transparent towards each other & to know how to extend grace & to be able to love one another. He definitely answered us. Little by little, He began to reveal to us, the victory we have in our marriage. God was reigniting our love & friendship towards one another in such a new & fresh way we had never experienced before. 

"The best relationship is when you can act like lovers & bestfriends at the same time."

Don't get me wrong. Girlfriends are a must-have in every woman's life. But to have a best friend in your spouse, it has to be the most amazing & special thing God has every created! So believe me when I say that I know God has bigger plans for your marriage. He knows you desire a relationship with your spouse. If you do, then run to Him. Plead for your marriage. Cry out for your spouse. Go to God on behalf of your marriage & pour out your heart on Him. He WILL answer you. In His will & perfect timing, He will honor you for your faithfulness,not just to your husband, but your faithfulness to Him. 

Are you best friends with your spouse? 

Have you ever thought about praying for your marriage?

Know that in order for our marriages to thrive, we must make sacrifices & invest in them as best possible. 

How can I pray for you and your friendship with your spouse? 

Let me know in the comments. I'd love to pray over you. 

Have a blessed weekend!