Saturday, April 30, 2011


Pin It Now! I hide from others. I hide from myself. I hide from the truth. I hide from reality.

I hide insecurity.
I hide deceit and hate.
I hide trouble and instability.
I hide doubt.

I hide imperfection.

Everyone has something to hide- as much as we may try to deny it, we all have something in life that we are 'ashamed' of. We all carry something within us that we believe is better kept inside than shared with others. We all carry doubts and insecurities- and what is funny, is that despite the fact that we all do it (we all put our hands in front of our faces sometimes) we think we are all alone.

Here's the truth- we all hide. But what are we really so afraid of? Ae we afraid to let people in? Are we afraid to let people know that we are insecure and unsure? Are we afraid to open ourselves up to hurt and failure?

For me, life has always been a never-ending battle with myself. Sometimes, I hide what I am truly feeling/thinking for fear that it will lead to something far more dangerous. I have the habit of hiding my emotions- and doing it rather easily/without notice. I encourage you to evaluate what you are hiding in life. Who are you hiding it from- and wouldn't it just be so great to let it all go?

So here it is... here's what I am hiding.

I am not perfect. I will never be perfect. I am scared. I wish I could be 100% sure about my future. I dread making mistakes. I long for true love.

"Thou art my hiding place and my shield: I hope in thy word."
Psalm 119:114


ps. a 'lighter' post for tomorrow- I promise. :)

Friday, April 29, 2011

Classic Beauty.

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Sorry I have been a little lax the past few days.. guess the summer vacation mindset hit me a little harder than I anticipated. Anyway- back to your inspiration!

It's only fitting that today's post has something to do with the Royal Wedding (seeing how that is all I have seen on television for the PAST WEEK).

Yes- Kate's dress was absolutely beautiful. It was classic but modern, modest but a little sexy, and very fitting. Inspired by Kate and William, today's post is about treasuring beautiful moments. For me, there are very few events more beautiful than a wedding. Something about the elegance and beauty of weddings gets me every time. I think the promises that weddings stand for are extremely sacred and beautiful.

I promise to live by your side for a lifetime.Is there anything more genuine or beautiful?

It is important for us to remember to treasure those beautiful moments in life. The moments that we make lifelong promises. The moments we agree to give our hearts to others. The moments we promise to love another person as much as we love ourselves.

Although I haven't been married yet... I truly hope that my wedding day is beautiful, inspiring, and very emotional. I know I will be crying my eyes out and an absolute emotional mess. It will, hopefully, be the greatest day of my life.

Remember your wedding? Did you plan for months/years? Was it everything you hope for- and more? What was the absolute best moment of the day?

Treasure those memories... They are once in a lifetime.

"Most importantly, love each other deeply, because love will cause many sins to be forgiven."
1 Peter 4:8


Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Days Like Today.

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It's days like today where I truly believe that life is good.

Life is good when:

I get to be around people I love.
I get to talk to close friends in other cities.
I get to accept a summer internship at a Grand Rapids Magazine.
I realize that I won't have to study for tests for four months after tomorrow.
Everything around me seems to be going well, my loved ones are healthy, and I have nothing to complain about.

It is times like these that I take for granted. It is so easy for me to miss to beauty of goodness is life when things are going well. Today, I realize that I am so blessed with how my life is turning out. I could not be more thankful for the people, relationships, and opportunities that have opened up for me.

Why is it so hard for us to be thankful when things are going well? I think it is because we expect things to work out a certain way. When we pray, we expect that God will gradually 'check off' our life to-do list. We are discouraged when something veers off course, or when someone hurts you in an unexpected way. I encourage you to let go of those expectations, and instead... just be grateful for how your life has played out.

We truly do have a lot to be thankful for.

"For God did not give us a spirit of timidity (of cowardice, of craven and cringing and fawning fear), but one of power and of love and of calm and well-balanced mind and discipline and self-control."
2 Timothy 1:7


Monday, April 25, 2011

New Time Slot.

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So it seems like it may work better for me to update right before the clock strikes midnight this summer. It's actually the time where my head starts spinning and I drive myself crazy thinking about random, troubling, inspiring happenings in life-- and it helps to get all these crazy thoughts out before bed... so here's to a new writing time for summer 2011!

Today got my thinking about expectations.
We all have expectations for our lives. Whether they be career oriented, education, family life, or spiritual... we all expect our lives to turn out a certain way. And let's be honest, we are a little upset when things don't go as planned.

Okay- if I am being completely honest- I get freaked out when things go awry. Something about deviating from a safe, predictable plan really scares me. I find comfort in having my future planned out- knowing what is going to happen next. There's only one problem. 99.99% of the time, life doesn't happen exactly as planned. We are forced to 'go with the flow' (some of the hardest words in my vocabulary) and take a step outside normality. So today, I encourage you to do whatever you can to be comfortable with 'going with the flow,' in fact, I encourage you to purposefully step our of the flow. 

You may find it exciting, challenging, thrilling, emotional...
you may hate it, you may love it.

I promise you it will be worth it. Although we build these expectations for life (eating well, exercising, reading more, begin happy, volunteering, relaxing, worrying less, thinking positively), to say they will happen 100% of the time is pretty unrealistic.

Instead- I encourage you to strive to live a good life, free from expectations. Live to seek beauty, to treasure relationships, and to grow as an individual. Let go of the thoughts and emotions tying you down-- FLY FREE.

"We have escaped like a bird out of the fowler's snare; the snare has been broken, and we have escaped."
Psalm 124:7


Sunday, April 24, 2011


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I'm back!! I decided to take a break the last few days... life has been pretty hectic (in a good way of course)! Here's a quick update- 
Friday: moved out of freshman dorms for good (can't believe the year went that fast). 
Saturday: Summer job-hunting and watching my incredible sister play college volleyball. 
Sunday: Easter- a perfect day with the family (church, home-cooked meal, ice cream, drive around the neighborhood with the sister, walk with my mom, and pizza time tonight, couldn't have been better). It's days like these where I realize how I truly couldn't live without my family by my side. I am so luck to be surrounded by such incredible people and role models.

Anyway- on to the real point of my blog, my daily inspiration...

There is something so beautiful about the promise of easter. Not only does it remind us of God's eternal love and Jesus' ultimate sacrifice... but the day itself just reminds us that there is something more. There has got to be something more than this beautifully broken life. There has got to be something great waiting beyond Earth. 

God is that greatness. 

I think it is easiest for me to see God's beauty and love in the faces and joy of the people I love. I look down at my sisters in church and smile at our inside jokes. I am overjoyed when my brother agrees to wear a cute, dressy polo to church that I picked out for him. I love to hear my family laugh and talk and chat and just love each other. Isn't that what life is all about? Love and laughter and joy and happiness?

Why can't everyday be as beautiful as easter? Sure, I know Easter is a holiday, but why can't we have a part of it every day? Today,  I pledge to make everyday a small part of easter. I pledge to see the beauty in small moments, in the eyes of my family, and in the arms of people I love.

I hope you had a great, relaxing Easter sunday and I encourage you to carry that feeling with you every day. God isn't only by our side today-- he is there every single days of our lives.

"Jesus said to her, "I am the resurrection and the life. He who believes in me will live, even though he dies; and whoever lives and believes in me will never die."
John 11:25-26


Thursday, April 21, 2011


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Why is it so hard to be positive in the face of hardship? Why do we turn to negativity as a coping mechanism? Instead of instinctively telling myself- "you're going to ACE that exam," I ultimately fall victim to the thoughts that keep telling me- "it's going to be so much harder than you thought" or "you didn't study enough."

Today is the big day. Exams start. The funny thing is, at this time tomorrow... I will be done. 24 hours from now the majority of my worries and doubts and anxiety will be gone. Why is it that so short of a time can foster such extreme fear and anxiety?

Today- I choose positivity. I studied hard this semester. I paid attention in class. I understand the material. I am intelligent. I can do well on my exams. I WILL do well on my exams.

I choose positivity over weakness. I refuse to believe the negative thoughts that tempt me to doubt myself. I believe in myself and I believe that despite whatever happens, everything will be okay.

My life does not depend on a few exam scores.
Today, I encourage you to choose positivity. Whenever you encounter those negative thoughts- throw them out. Refuse to let them control you. We are often capable of so much more than we give ourselves credit for. Choose to be optimistic.

Back with updates later. :)

"Do not be afraid, for I am with you. Do not gaze about, for I am your God. I will fortify you. I will really help you. I will really keep fast hold of you with my right hand of righteousness.”
Isaiah 41:10 


Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Compliments! :)

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What is one of the most rewarding, healthy, feel-good things you can do? 
Give yourself a compliment
Often times, we are too busy putting ourselves down that we forget to pat ourselves on the back. You deserve a round of applause, just for being you. It is important that we take time each day to acknowledge just how special and talented we truly are... yes, it may seem like bragging about yourself- but a little ego boost and compliment can do wonders for your self-esteem.

I encourage you to pause today in the midst of chaos, in the midst of your crazy everyday life... to realize how great of a person you are. Yes, we all have flaws. We all make mistakes. We all screw up. But you are so much more than those mistakes. You are beautiful and you are worthy of true, deep love.

How can we tell ourselves how great we are without seeming ego-centric? I encourage you to journal, write a few things down that you are proud of in your life. Not only will it help you de-stress.. but you may also just find yourself saying, 'hey, I am pretty great.'

Today- I realize that I...
I work really hard.
I am a pretty good role model for my younger siblings.
I have most of my priorities straight.
I value success, but I also value failure.
I am special, unique, and beautiful... just the way I am.
No number on a scale can ever tell me how beautiful I am, it comes from within.

What makes you awesome? Pat yourself on the back, it really does help when we feel worthless. It helps us to realize that we do make a difference. We are worth the world.

"The Lord doesn’t see things the way you see them.
People judge by outward appearance, but the Lord looks at the heart.”
1 Samuel 16:7


Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Soon... It Will Be Summer.

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In light of yesterday's post about snow in April, I thought it would be good to follow up with a post about how excited I am for SUMMER! I am officially on summer vacation next wednesday after my last exam, but I will be moving out of college dorms forever on FRIDAY! It is so strange/weird/exciting/scary that my first year went so fast. Am I really almost a sophomore already??
Doesn't that picture just scream peace, quiet, happiness, and love for summer? There is something so beautiful about sand and footprints and jumping into the horizon. (Have you ever noticed that most inspirational pictures you come across are of people jumping in the air- funny, huh?)

Today my inspiration for you is to find a way to live like it's heaven on earth. Yes, I know it is quite the concept... and hard to imagine. But, if we strive for a life that is as beautiful as what is waiting for us beyond this life... I truly believe that we can come across beauty on earth. Today, in order to create my own heaven on earth, I pledge to:

1. Take study breaks. Finals week can really take a mental toll.
2. Tell the people in my life how much I miss them and how much I am looking forward to seeing them soon.
3. Appreciate the beauty of the sun, the clouds, the wind, the warmth, the chill, everything outside.
4. Read a little of my inspiration- the bible and my new book, "Cold Tangerines"
5. Take some quiet/alone time to just think and thank God for life.
6. Laugh, smile, and appreciate friends.

What is going to make your heaven on Earth? I encourage you to find out... Life on earth can be extremely beautiful and fulfilling, if you are willing to put in a little effort. :)

"Do not let your hearts be troubled. Trust in God; trust also in me. In my Father's house are many rooms; if it were not so, I would have told you. I am going there to prepare a place for you. And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come back and take you to be with me that you also may be where I am."
John 14:1-3 


Monday, April 18, 2011

Expect the Unexpected.

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Snow in late April... you have really outdone yourself this time Michigan. Snow... and my summer vacation starts on Friday (sort of). Is this a joke- or is this reality?

I have a hard time expecting the unexpected. I am one of those people who craves routine, who craves simplicity, who craves predictability. It is hard for me to embrace change... to be okay with deviating from the norm. Sometimes, it scares me to do something different than I usually do. The question is- why am I so scared?

I think the unexpected things in life are often the most fun. The trouble is, most of us are so concerned with what is safe- with what we are comfortable with, that we are scared to experience the unexpected. We are too scared to step outside what seems normal.

Today, I encourage you to embrace the unexpected. Try something new. Talk to someone you wouldn't have approached normally. Make someone's day by showing them that you care for them. When an opportunity comes to embrace something different than the norm... JUMP RIGHT IN.

I encourage you today to let go of fear.
Be strong and courageous.
Be independent and beautiful.
Be open to possibility.
Be ready for something you aren't ready for. (Don't you just love paradox.)

"Don’t copy the behavior and customs of this world, but let
God transform you into a new person by changing the way you think.
Then you will learn to know
God’s will for you, which is good and pleasing and perfect."
Romans 12:2 


Sunday, April 17, 2011

Stop. Breathe.

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Sometimes I think we need a reminder to just stop and breathe. We often get so caught up in life that we forget to appreciate the beauty of a single moment. We forget to realize that we can't re-live moments or memories in life. 

It sounds so simple, right? Just breathe... in and out. In goes oxygen and out goes carbon dioxide. It is no natural... yet life can make us feel like we are holding our breath. We hold our breath in the face of stress, danger, anticipation, and excitement. 

Why is it so hard for us to do something so completely natural and healthy?

I expect a lot of myself. It is one of my biggest strengths and one of my biggest weaknesses. When I start to break down, mentally or physically, I forget to breathe. I forget the natural beauty of life. Everything is wiped away and replaced with something artificial and temporary.

Breathing, relaxation and peace are eternal. They will never fail. Although my body may fail me at times, my spirit will not. I encourage you to breathe, because every little thing is going to be all right. Breathe, and appreciate the beauty of moments passing you by. And finally, don't be afraid to take a break, everyone needs them.

More BREATHE artwork tonight... I need the inspiration :)

"You have made my life no longer than the width of my hand. My entire lifetime is just a moment to you; at best, each of us is but a breath."
Psalm 39:5


Saturday, April 16, 2011

Days Like These.

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It's days like these that it is hard for me to be thankful. It's days like these that it is hard to see the sunshine. It's days like these that make life seem dark. It's days like these that make me miss home.

I absolutely hate being sick. It is not the kind of stomach sickness that comes and goes... but the kind that stays in your head for a few days. It is the kind that makes your head hurt and your body ache and your eyes droop. It is the kind where even a twelve hour sleep feels like six.

When I am sick it is so hard for me to be optimistic. I think that is true for any hard thing we go through in life. We think about why it has to happen to us, why it has to happen the week before finals... why me, why now? It is so hard, in times of sickness, for us to be thankful for the things we do have, the things that will never leave us in hard times, the things that are always right there next to us. 

So today, I am learning a lesson in what it means to be completely optimistic in the face of sickness. 

I thank the Lord for a time to rest.
I am thankful for friends and family who care about me and are concerned about me even though they are far away.
I am thankful for the chance to spend the day under blankets and watching feel-good TV.
I thank the Lord for a chance to have some alone time, some time to clear my head and ease my mind.

It is days like these that are hard. It is days like these test us... it is what we do with that test that defines who we are and what we can withstand.
"Let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts, since as members of one body you were called to peace, and be thankful."
Colossians 3:15


Friday, April 15, 2011

Finding Peace and Quiet.

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There is something so serene about walking across a college campus at 8:30 am on a friday morning. While everyone is sleeping off the events of thursday night, only the lucky few freshman to have early morning spanish on mon/wed/fri trek across the diag. Despite finding out that 8:30 is a lot earlier in college than it is at home, I actually like having early morning classes (a blessing and a curse that my classes don't start until 10 next semester). I like being alone on my walk to class, I actually find it peaceful and relaxing.

Today's topic of inspiration is finding peace in everyday life. Although it is easy for me to find peace and relaxation in the early morning hours (thank goodness I am a morning person), it is often hard for me to find peace and quiet in the midst of a busy college town afternoon/night. How can I be quiet when there is so much going on around me and so many different people and things to watch?

I think it is extremely difficult to find peace in the midst of commotion. It is probably one of the biggest challenges we face in life. It is hard to take time out of our busy day to be quiet. It is hard for me to realize that quiet and alone time keeps me sane. Clearing my head in times of high stress really keeps me from feeling extremely overwhelmed. So how do we do that if it is so hard and there are so many distractions in life?

Here are some 'finding peace' tips that I find useful in my life:
1. Take a few minutes right when you get up in the morning to appreciate the dawn of a new day.
2. Take care of yourself and nourish your body. Making yourself look 'presentable' and dressing in a cute outfit actually boosts self-esteem!
3. READ! My favorite stress-reliever (Try Cold Tangerines- my book of choice at the moment for appreciating the beauty of every day.)
4. TALK to friends and family DAILY.
5. Enjoy some part of nature- it really does help.
6. Take a minute to feel the sunshine (assuming it is a nice day), to watch the sunset, to get lost in the wind, and to find yourself in the midst of commotion.

I encourage you to find peace today. Countdown: 6 days until 3 exams and 7 DAYS UNTIL HOME. I will definitely be craving peace and quiet for the next week. Wish me luck. :)

"Now may the Lord of peace himself give you peace at all times and in every way. The Lord be with all of you."
2 Thessalonians 3:16


Thursday, April 14, 2011

What Matters?

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Do you have a hard time prioritizing? If you are anything like me, I tend to stress over things that may not matter much in the end. I worry about my daily troubles... things that will have absolutely no significance tomorrow. I convince myself that my world will end if my day doesn't go according to plan.
Sometimes when I find myself in times of high stress (hello finals?) I like to take time out of my day to remind myself what matters most to me in life. What can't I live without? What makes me wake up each day with a smile and what motivates me to get out of bed. 

What do I live for?

I live for God's glory.
I live for family.
I live for friends.
I live for laughter, love, and learning.
I live for joy.
I live for knowing that everything in my life has made me who I am.
I live for living God's grace and showing others the power and wonder of his love.

I live knowing that life is supposed to be hard, life is supposed to challenge and test us, life is not perfect.

I know, easier said than done right? Sometimes, it is so much easier convincing myself that my life depends on what happens on Gossip Girl that night or what grade I get on a paper.

Here's a secret for you: 50 years from now, I won't care at all what grade I got on my freshman year women's studies exam. Hopefully, I will be living with family and friends that I love and can share life with. Shout-out to all of you back home and in different cities... Please know that I love you and appreciate all you do for me. (AND I WILL BE HOME SOON). :)

"The Lord is good to those whose hope is in him, to the one who seeks him."
Lamentations 3:25


Wednesday, April 13, 2011


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EXAM time, the time of year I love the most... NOT. I always get so worked up about final papers, exams, tests, and grades. I somehow convince myself that it is the end of the world if I get bad grades. I constantly have to remind myself that I am no less of a person with an a- or b+. I am great, I am doing great things, and I am capable of great things despite a final percentage.

Although exams haven't officially started yet (next week...), I am already starting to feel the pressure. I don't even want to think about this weekend when everything will start to gather and will overwhelm me like a flood. So this morning I am taking a moment t remind myself (and you) to keep calm

Keep Calm and Carry On. It seems so simple doesn't it? Think again.

Exam week is only a week. A week out of my long life. Although they are important, exams will NOT be the death of me. In fact, it helps if I just go about life as normal with my daily routine (I am obsessed with daily routines). If I remind myself that it will be SUMMER VACATION in a little over a week, everything suddenly looks so much brighter. On a side note... I can't even believe that I am almost done with my first year of college. So crazy.

Today, I encourage you to keep calm. Find a place of comfort and peace in the routine of every day. Carry on with life despite hardship, it will be over soon.

"The name of the LORD is a strong tower; the righteous run to it and are safe."
Proverbs 18:10


Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Who To Inspire?

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I'll let you in on a secret--- I am always scared that people won't agree with what I have to say. I fear judgment, I fear denial, and I fear questioning. When I started this blog... I wasn't sure how much I wanted to share, how much I wanted to put myself out there. I am naturally a quiet person, and I do keep a lot of my emotions to myself.

It's hard for me to let others in.

But, I will tell you another secret--- writing these posts forces me to connect with a side of myself that I rarely listen to. It forces me to think about what I want other people to know about me (without having to tell them face to face). It is weird to think that every sentence I write can be seen by anyone in the world, but it is also kind of cool. People can get to know me through my writing without ever actually getting to know me in person. Although I do consider myself an awkward person sometimes, writing feels so completely open and natural. People can read my posts if they want... and maybe it will even help someone out, give them a bright moment in a dark day. 

My initial purpose in starting this blog was to find some inspiring aspect of life every day and report it online for others to see. I wanted it t be an outlet of peace, comfort, and solitude in a world full of everything else. Through writing almost every day, my attitude has changed a little bit. Instead of just searching for inspiration, I try to think about little pieces of advice/messages that might help me think a little more positively about life. I have started to focus on what my writing may actually be doing in people's lives (or at least what I hope it is doing in people's lives).
I hope I am inspiring someone. It doesn't matter who it is or how big of an impact it makes... all that matters is that my writing is reaching someone and that it helps them smile or laugh.

I aim to inspire. I aim to be a source of comfort in the midst of the depressing and dangerous news we are constantly bombarded with. If I have ever inspired you, I am truly grateful. 

Please know...You are my reason for writing. You are special to me.

"Whatever you do, do everything for the glory of God."
1 Corinthians 10:31


Monday, April 11, 2011

Alone Time.

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I admit that I am one of those people who loves alone time. I love to spend time being quiet, thinking about who I am and what I want in life, away from the pressure of other people and relationships. I love just sitting in solitude. Isn't it relaxing? If you haven't tried it... try spending 5 minutes today just sitting quietly, it will do wonders for your stress level I promise.

Because I like to spend time a significant amount of time being alone... I 
occasionally get to the point where being alone seems to consume me. I start to think that being alone all the time is natural: CAUTION- it is a great thing to have positive relationships and to be around people. The important part that I am still learning is how to balance the two.
Yes, it is important to have alone time... but we need to accept that being around others and having friendships is a great part of life! Relationships help us grow, give us people to count on, and help us cope with hard situations. Knowing that there are people that care about us... people that are interested in our lives makes life so much more comforting.

When I start to go into a period of 'extended solitude' I get a little lonely (sometimes without even noticing). I miss talking with people, laughing, and experiencing life with others by my side. I sometimes start to think that I am alone. But then I am reminded that I am NEVER alone. I have incredible people in life that will never leave my side. I owe everything to my family and friends for being there for me all these years.

I am not ALONE. You are not alone. God will never leave your side.

"Casting all your anxieties on him, because he cares for you."
1 Peter 5:7


Sunday, April 10, 2011

Proving What to Whom?

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We all do it. We are constantly analyzing how our actions and ways of life are being perceived by those around us. We try to 'live up to' unrealistic expectations, false images of beauty and perfection, and ideals of being a good person.

What happened to just being good enough... exactly the way we are.
Instead, I focus on proving myself and my worth to everyone around me. But what am I trying to prove, and who exactly do I have to prove myself to?
I am plagued by self-doubt. I try to remedy that doubt by proving myself to those around me... and ultimately proving myself to God. But who is anyone else to judge? We are in complete control over our life and over the person we want to be... and when we put our faith in something higher than ourselves we have to learn to trust that being ourselves is good enough.

Grace ensures that we are accepted as ourselves despite what we do. What does that mean? Every good deed done with intentions to make a good impression, every impressive act that you think will build your credibility, every attempt at establishing a good reputation... it is all un-neccesary. We are already loved by grace, we don't need to prove our worth. We were created with the idea that by being ourselves, we will do great things- not that we have to do great things in order to be ourselves.


"Everyone who believes that Jesus is the Christ has been born of God, and everyone who loves the Father loves whoever has been born of him."
1 John 5:1


Saturday, April 9, 2011


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BIG NEWS: The sun in shining for the first time all week. Happy, happy day. I have been living in a time warp of rain and clouds recently, and this afternoon my soul loves to see a little sun. Doesn't sunshine just make you happier?

I also got to see more family today... I think my grandparents played a role in bringing some Florida sun to Michigan, even if it is still in the mid 40s.
We don't get sunshine every day. In fact, sun peeking through the clouds in the midst of rainy season is a pretty rare thing. So if you are lucky enough to have some sun today... take advantage of it. Take advantage of the beautiful light that can instantly boost your soul.

When I think of the sun in my life, I not only think about the actual rays, but I think about the people in my life that act like the sun to me. They make me happy, they make me grow, and they make me such a better person.

Who acts as the sun in your life? Who are the special people that can make you reach for the sky- that can make you strive for beauty? My family and friends are my sunshine... my only sunshine. They definitely make me happy when skies are gray. Okay, a little cliché, but couldn't be more true.

Thank you all for being such an important part of my life. I don't know what I would do without you.

"Consider the lilies of the field, how they grow; they toil not, neither do they spin. And yet I say to you, that even Solomon in all his glory is not arrayed like one of these."
Matthew 6:28-29


Thursday, April 7, 2011

Finding Your Heart.

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Why do we sell ourselves short? We do we accept anything less than we are worth? Why do we settle when we know that we deserve the world? Why do we doubt ourselves?

I love this picture. There is something so real about it... something so genuine. It also makes me think about how I treat my heart... do I really give it the respect it deserves?"Your heart is a superstar. Treat it like the celebrity it is." 

I trust that God puts our deepest desires (and his) in the depths of our heart. I truly believe that what we want most out of life... and ultimately what God wants for us, is somewhere in our heart. We just have to know where to find it. Believe me, I know it can be tricky to look into your own hearts. It is a vulnerable place, an honest place, a place that doesn't hide anything for us but also risks the world. It is a place to build our faith.

I encourage you today to really look at your own heart and your desires. Are you really listening to your heart- pausing to reflect on what is really important to you in life, or are you listening to everyone around you, social pressures, and the stress of everyday. If we can learn to put all of this 'outside' stuff aside, and learn to live on what our hearts tells us alone... wouldn't that be so beautiful? What if God speaks to us through those little 'heart urges' we feel? You know, that gut-wrenching feeling that something is pulling at your heart strings... What if that is God's way of saying- hey, I am here- listen, trust, relax.

Listen to your heart today. Trust in what it is telling you. Relax- everything is going to be okay. :)

""Whatever you do, do your work heartily, as for the Lord rather than for men."
Colossians 3:23


Wednesday, April 6, 2011

HIGH five.

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Do you ever have those days where you feel like you are on such a spiritual high? Like nothing else matters because you just feel so great? It feels like God is just walking right alongside you... and you can feel him holding your hand, fingers laced in his, him guiding you exactly where you need to be.

Yes, well... they are rare. But yesterday was definitely one of those days.
Just take a second to imagine it...
A day where you get into great conversation with people you love.
A day where you feel God's presence in everything you do.
A day when prayer just seems to flow out of you.
A day when you realize how truly blessed you are.
A day when being grateful feels so natural.
The perfect day.

Yes, they are few and far between... but when we do have them, isn't it great to acknowledge just how great they really are?

It is in the incredible days where it is easiest to see God's presence and goodness. Now, my challenge for you is to make each and every day a good day... okay a little unrealistic, but try to incorporate some incredible part of your life into each and every day. We may love the incredible days, but it is when we see beauty in the rough days that we truly see why we need faith. :)

See beauty in the rain... it is out there, you just have to look for it.

"Do not let your hearts be troubled. Trust in God; trust also in me. In my Father's house are many rooms; if it were not so, I would have told you. I am going there to prepare a place for you. And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come back and take you to be with me that you also may be where I am."
John 14: 1-3


Tuesday, April 5, 2011


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Why do we always think that being strong is denying our true emotion? Why do we equate tears with sadness, weakness, and depression? Sometimes, there is no denying that you just have to cry. It is such a great way to release emotion, to remind yourself that you are allowed to feel.. that you are allowed to be weak.

I am one of the first to admit that I LOVE to cry. A great romantic movie, an inspiring athlete, a recovery story in the news... I am an emotional train wreck waiting to happen. But isn't that 'sign of weakness' just a sign that we know that there is something deeper pulling at our heart strings? 

Don't tears take the attention away from ourselves and turn in towards what God is doing in our lives?

I encourage you to not be afraid to cry. Don't consider it weakness, don't run away from your emotions, don't deny your soul from letting go. It is in times of weakness and stress that we truly realize what makes us strong. Take advantage of the times you feel weak and worthless, and them remember that you are NEVER weak and worthless in God's eyes.

You are always loved.
One of my favorite quotes of all time: :)

Just thought I would throw that in there... seeing as how I have so many incredible people in my life that I know are in my life for a specific reason. I thank the Lord for leading me to relationships and incredible people. And, I know that I would always feel comfortable sharing a good cry with them. The people in my life help turn my weakness into everlasting strength and growth.

"Whom have I in heaven but you? And earth has nothing I desire besides you. My flesh and my heart may fail,but God is the strength of my heart and my portion forever."
Psalm 73: 25-26


Monday, April 4, 2011


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Have you found your 'place' in life? Do you still feel lost- like there is nowhere you truly fit in or people you really connect with? Are you blessed with an incredible community, great friends, strong faith, and countless blessings and opportunities?
"Follow your PASSION, find your PLACE"

It's hard to believe that we all have a specific 'place' where we fit in life. Is it possible to have several different places, several groups of friends, a few places where you feel totally comfortable and at peace?

I sure hope so.

Yesterday, I started thinking about how truly blessed I am to have found a community at U of M. I was not the most outgoing person in high-school, and have been known to value alone time and family a lot... (but that's NOT always a bad thing). However, coming to school, I was a little nervous about having to start from ground zero and make new friends. I was lost without the people I had grown up around, the people that knew me, the people I trusted and depended on. Despite this anxiety, I truly did find INCREDIBLE people, organizations, and community at U of M (surprising how fast I did it too, considering how HUGE the campus is). I thank the LORD for making me outgoing, encouraging me in the first few months of school to pursue new friendships, new activities, and new passions. It is through him that I found friendships in my sorority, Younglife, and all over campus.

Only he could give me such an incredible first year of school. How am I truly this blessed? :)

Are you blessed with an incredible community- if so, let them know! If you are still searching, don't give up hope... they are out there!

"But even if you should suffer for what is right, you are blessed. Do not fear what they fear, do not be frightened. Take Courage."
1 Peter 3:14


Sunday, April 3, 2011

Be Glorified.

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Have I ever expressed just how much I love Sunday afternoons? They are such an easy excuse to relax, go to church, nap, snack, and read :) oh, and catch up on some TV drama on Hulu.

Although today was rather rainy, I did get up early to go to church, and then spent the rest of the day in my sweatpants hiding away in my room. It was such a great way to spend a rainy day- underneath my blankets, watching some feel good television... I can't complain.

Anyway, today I experienced the wonder of good worship music. Music is so important in my life- and good worship can literally make my day so much better. There is so much power in the lyrics, so much emotion behind the chords, and so much beauty behind the way it is all put together. I get so caught up in music- and often times I let it take me places that nothing else can.

I encourage you to listen to some of your favorite music today. Blast it- let the whole world hear... okay, so maybe not that loud, but really let it be an emotional outlet for you. I use several songs to express just how broken I am without the love of Christ- I cannot even tell you how good it makes me feel to love and praise the Lord through song and worship.

Embrace the wonder of music. Let the chords and the harmony vibrate in your soul. Get taken away by the glory of sound. And through all this- know that the most beautiful song to sing is your own.

ps. the post is a little shorter today because I have things to do tonight- back with a vengeance tomorrow! :) I hope you have a great, relaxing sunday.

"Sing to the LORD, all the earth; proclaim his salvation day after day."
1 Chronicles 16:23

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