What Came From Being Outside Of My Comfort Zone…

“Great things never come from comfort zones”
I seen this quote today and it totally resonated deep within me. It seems as if for the past few months very few things I have done have been within my comfort zone. You see, I’m an introvert and I thrive in small, routine based settings. And for the last three months my life has been anything but what I’m used too.
We left our small church, my husband is head coach of a high school football (which came with rebuilding a program and me being a big part of the booster club), I’m volunteering as a leader in a teen/young mom group, our children are all starting a new school, I went to my first writers retreat w/new people and 90% of the people I have been interacting w/as of lately are new.
Although at times all the new things that are going on make my head spin and cause exhaustion, it’s all exciting! It’s exciting to do things that in the past would cause me to either shrink in fear or be stagnant,knowing that to move and do something different would push me to new limits.
Throughout it all, I’m thankful.
I’m thankful to be in a place where I’m forced to see and do things differently than before. Being outside of my comfort zone has caused me to grow and nurture the woman that I am destined to become. New opportunities and relationships, a changed mind and a beautiful portrait of what’s to come came from being outside of my comfort zone…xo

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The Joys of Doing Something New…

This weekend I am on a writing retreat!! It’s seven of us total, in a little comfy house out in the middle of nowhere.
There have been many great moments. Many moments of honesty and vulnerability shared amongst people who can on some level relate to or empathize with the impactful, sometimes heavy words, that flow from your heart.
One of the best times for me was when we discussed what it means to be a “writer”.
I didn’t realize the fear that I had when it came to calling myself a “writer”. Blogger, okay I’ll go with it. But to really say that I was a writer was something that I wouldn’t do because to me it signified a sense of accomplishment. Being a writer used to be something that I felt was unattainable. Something that I wasn’t worthy enough to achieve because I haven’t finished and published a book that has sold thousands upon thousands of copies…
But you know what I learned?
I learned that I’m a writer because that’s what I do-I write. I best express myself with words and that is my God given artistry…
More than anything I’m coming away from this retreat KNOWING that I am a writer and being confident in the fact that I will finish my book, I will finish many books, because it is my duty to share my artistry with the world…

A Better Tomorrow…

I wish I could say that I have perfectly behaved children at all times but I can’t. Our son had the worst attitude because he couldn’t go to football practice due to the rain and while volunteering today his twin sister decided that she was going to stand in her self-made puddle…of pee.
And our youngest barely reaches my kneecap but can throw a tantrum that most kids could only dream of…
But instead of me sulking and mentally calling myself the worst mother ever, I’m choosing to not freak out.
I’m choosing to smile and be pleasant when I really want to yell and flee from my home.
I’m choosing to clean up the messes, wash the clothes, hand out the consequences, give the speeches…and continue to believe that I’m a good mom and because God gave me these children, he’ll give me the grace to handle the everyday things that come up with love and compassion.
So, cheers to a better tomorrow! Xo
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Monday Motivation: You Are So Much More Than Just

Happy Monday!
When people used to ask me what I did for a living, I used to say, “Oh, I’m just a stay at home wife and mom”…Just! Just a stay at home wife and mom, that was seruously my answer.
“Just” put so many limitations on me. “Just” kept me in a box, confined to a life of average…until I realized that I am so much more than “just”.
In addition to being a SAHWM, I am also a blogger, (soon to be) author, volunteer leader w/teen and young moms, encourager and lover of creativity, to name a few 😜
So, this week I hope that you dont see yourself as “just” one of the roles you’ve been given in life.
I hope that you see yourself as a valuable, purposeful person in addition to a success at whatever roles you have been so blessed to be given…You are so much more than your”Just”!!! Xo

Monday Motivation: I Had a Choice To Make…

Yesterday I had a thought…I can either be upset because I didn’t have what I wanted or I can be grateful that I had what I needed.
Growing up I always felt jealous and insignificant because I didn’t have a family like everyone else. My mom was single, raising 3 daughters and a granddaughter alone, watching a son being completely submerged into street life, doing all that she could to keep a roof over our head and food on the table, all while dealing with her own issues on top of alcohol being more of a daily need instead of an option.
To add to her frustrations throw in one daughter who was in and out of prison, trapped in a horrible relationship and trying to escape through drug use. And then there was me…pregnant at fourteen and pretty much a replica of all that my mother was and didn’t want me to be…then multiply the demons inside her by at least a hundred when she decided that the only answer was to make me get an abortion.
Somehow over the years I never considered how all of this affected my mother emotionally. I only thought about her issues with alcohol and how I didn’t have the typical loving, affectionate mother that I thought my peers had.
But yesterday something turned…something changed. And I realized that my mother was incredibly strong. She could have gave up when she was beaten unconscious by my father or when she realized the struggle and lack that came with being a single mother. She could have gave up when she realized that she was an alcoholic or when she found out that one of her daughter’s had started smoking crack and that the other was fourteen and pregnant.
There were so many times when my mom could have chose to throw in the towel, but she didn’t. She was always a hard and faithful worker. She was at her last job for over fifteen years. No matter how many times we moved, we always had a roof over our head and a meal every night. My mother thought enough about me, us, to do whatever she had to do to keep us with shelter and more importantly with her.
I didn’t recognize that early on. I had to be important to my mom because she did everything she could to keep me cared for…she gave me what I needed and what she could… for that I am thankful.
It has been good for me to see things from a different perspective. For so long I focused on all that was wrong instead of the things that my mother tried so hard to get right. And it all came down to me making a choice…a choice to look at my life from a different angle and to be genuinely thankful for the view!

Monday Motivation: At the Very Least…

My husband spoke last night and one of the things that really stood out was the question” at the very least, what are you doing?”
So, as today’s Monday Motivation, I ask you(and myself :)) that very question “What’s the very least that you could be doing?”. And this could be in any are of your life.
-What’s the very least you could be doing to achieve your goals?
-What’s the very least you could be doing to build your confidence?
-What’s the very least you could be doing to get healthier, have better relationships, communicate better, to love others more, to live the life you really want?

The list could go on and on, but the way to the answer is the same. Action. No matter how small, do something today that will put you on the path to be being your best self…even if it’s the very least you could do, it’s something and that means progress!

Mommy Declarations!

Hi All!! I have such a heart for Mothers! I know first hand what it’s like to be so caught up in being a wife and mommy that it can be hard seeing myself doing anything else. Specifically the things that I am gifted to do…created to do. For the past week I have been making my declarations everyday and I can see the difference. I’m taking the time to change my mind and my actions are following.
I pray that whatever it is that God has called you to do that you do it…all while being the best wife, mother, sister, friend (and whatever else you are!)ever.
You can do it!  

Today will be a great day! Everything that I need to get done will be done w/out dread, with excellence and on time.

My children call me blessed! I am a mother after God’s heart, therefore I speak positively into the hearts of my children.

I am loved. I am beautiful. I am God’s daughter. I am confident in myself b/c I have complete confidence in my Daddy God!

I walk in my God given purpose on purpose daily.

I live under an open heaven! Every blessing that God has for me I recieve, with a grateful heart.

I am blessed to be a blessing.

I am productive. Everything I put my hands to is blessed.

Today Was One of Those Days…

My day started out a little rough! An unknown car in my driveway at 5am, 3 kids that insisted on arguing and playing “karate kid” while they were supposed to be getting dressed, the irritation that comes w/seeing that the help you tried to give someone just isn’t helping…
Then you add to that the police coming to my house b/c of our home alarm going off and getting my oldest to school 30 seconds before her arrival time….and you can probably understand why at any moment I could have screamed!

However my saving grace was me continuing to tell myself that “great things are happening for me today and all things are working together for my good”. And the fact that today was also the first day of “BSF”; a weekly women’s bible study. We meet once a week for the school year; there’s a time that we all pray and worship together and then we break up into small groups and go over our weekly lessons that are focused on the book of Matthew. Afterwards we come back together worship and have a time of teaching and encouragement.
I was so glad to be a part of this bible study because of the diverse, authentic women that are involved. Just to hear people voice that they have been so busy w/life that they need time to get re-grounded in the Word and w/God is refreshing. It’s just so heartwarming for me to see women w/o the masks on say what’s in their hearts and just seek to be more intimate w/the One who loves them like no other…
So if everything that happened this morning was all so that I could press and be in the presence of some great women and a grace giving God, then I consider it all worth it! The enemy’s plan was to get me so frazzled that I would miss being in a place that my steps were ordered to be…I won b/c I didn’t give in and give up. So for that I’m thankful that Today Was One of Those Days…a great day, a grace day.

I’m Thankful…

To make a long story short, we had to take my car back to the dealership for some repairs and the loaner they gave me is an older version of what I already have.
Today I had some errands to run and by they time I got home I was exhausted and my hands were full b/c I had groceries and a baby to carry into the house. A few hours later I came back to the car to get water and I noticed that I had left a ton of stuff in the front seat and honestly it was a mess!!

My first thought was to leave it b/c heck, I didn’t feel like cleaning it out and it wasn’t MY car. Then I pricked by the Holy Spirit to be thankful. Be thankful not b/c I was having car issues but b/c even in that, God still provided transportation that was adequate for my family. So needless to say, I cleaned out the loaner vehicle and from here on out I’m going to keep it like I keep my own car and continue to be grateful through the process!

Having thankfulness at the forefront of my mind and heart has completely changed my perspective…what about you? What are you thankful for?

BE YOU!

One of the best ways for me to quiet myself and get alone w/God is to clean.  And that’s what I was doing for awhile today…cleaning!  Maybe it’s the nesting kicking in full gear or just me craving more organization in our home, either way I got some things accomplished domestically on this day all while be able to reflect and thank God for where He has brought me too!

While I was cleaning, I was just thinking.  Thinking about the person that I am and strive to be as a 32 year old child of God, wife, and soon to be mother of 4.  And I can honestly say that a lot has changed over the years.

I can remember back when I first made a commitment to give my all in my relationship w/God.  A lot of things changed.  The way I talked, where I went, who I hung out with and even the way that I viewed people.  And most of this was for the better~I made a lot of changes b/c I felt a certain conviction and I no longer wanted to just please me, ultimately I wanted to please God.

And with the good changes and transitions, there were some not so good things too.  One of the biggest things that I struggled w/for most of my life was highlighted and even heightened in a sense…insecurity.  From as far back as I can remember I had always felt that I wasn’t good enough, pretty enough, smart enough, popular enough…and the list could go on and on.

And w/me being a new Christian, I felt this all over again and my list of insecurities grew.  I didn’t know enough, I wasn’t social enough, I was too quiet, my testimony wasn’t big enough, I wasn’t important enough to hear from God like others, I didn’t look saved enough, I couldn’t pray like the others…

And w/my list of “I AM NOT ENOUGH’S’ growing, so did Operation “Be Someone Else”.  I attempted to do, be, and conform to what I saw around me.  Everything that I envied in other people I tried to take on for myself.  In no way  am I saying that a person cant admire or even aspire to take on a personal quality that they love about someone else, I’m just saying that I tried to BE someone else other than who God created me to be.

And w/this trying to be someone that I wasn’t came even more unhappiness.  I was very unsure of myself, my gifts and even who God had called me to be.  I was a people-pleaser. I looked to other people to validate me and when they didn’t, I was broken.  I was constantly  afraid of disappointing others.  I couldn’t make decisions without checking w/others.  I was always offended.  Lastly, I put more into the words and opinions of others than I did into my relationship w/God.

I am so glad to say that all that has changed.  I can remember one day when the Holy Spirit told me to “eat the meat and spit out the bones”.  For me this meant that I was to take only what I needed to help me grow, the edifying things from those around me.  This one phrase caused the light bulb to go off in my heart!  I was no longer in bondage to the words and thoughts of others!

Slowly, I came to realize that God didn’t make a mistake when He created me.  I am an introvert and I am okay w/that.  For a long time I thought that since mostly all the people around me were extroverts, I was defective.  But soon, I realized I wasn’t.  I have a quiet spirit.  I love to spend time by myself.   I like to watch people and how they respond to others.  I don’t like to respond too quickly.  I am who God made me.

However, I realized that God can work through my personality if I let Him.  There have been many times when God just opens me up and gives me the opportunity to have some very meaningful conversations with people, and in those moments I know it is Him at work.  And in these times, I am so thankful b/c more than anything I know that I have made a genuine connection w/someone…even if it was for just a moment in time.

The point  of this whole post is this~Be YOU.  Be the you who God created you to be from the beginning of time!!!  Yes, being You may take you taking some w/God and totally renewing your thinking, but it is so worth it!  Having a true, authentic relationship w/God and to know yourself and love who He created you to be is the best gift that you could possibly give to others and yourself!  BE YOU!!!!!  The true you.  The God centered and created You…just BE YOU:-)