Wednesday, November 30, 2016

what the supermarket lady taught me about love

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Yesterday I casually complimented one of the check-out ladies in the supermarket and it couldn't have had a more profound effect.

It wasn't anything big - I just said that I liked her hair bow.
But this lady just lit up. She beamed at me and we chatted
for a few minutes. I could tell that it really meant something to her.

I don't say that to pump myself up, it's just that now it's got me thinking. 

I've been reading 1st John lately, 
and it's all about love. 

Specifically, showing Jesus' love to others. 
1st John reasons that if Christ loved us so much that He died for us, we in turn should pour that unconditional love out on others.

But I'm selfish.

And most days, I'm a fighter, not a lover.
But Christ always lavishes me in love. And lately He's just been
absolutely hammering that issue of love into my mind.

What does love look like?

I don't really know the specifics yet. I'm still learning. 

But I have noticed something - love changes the way I think. Because at the end of the day, what I put in my head, and what I fixate on in my mind, really matters. This can be powerful, or it can be damaging.

So maybe my frame of mind is essential to love. 
Maybe it begins here. Maybe my mindset is everything.

On the days when I have drenched myself in Scripture, I can fight my way through the fires of this culture. I have a better line of defense against the lies I tend to feed. And I can see clearly that I was made to love, and to be loved - this is what I was born for. 

I wasn't created to wish that I looked like someone else. 

I wasn't designed by my Maker to compare myself
to friends or family or celebrities, or even myself of the past. 

 Why do I so often choose anxiety and pride and a 
billion other lies instead of God's warm arms?

Well, I am here. 

I exist.

And so do you.

Do you want more?
We're not getting any younger.
Every day that passes is a day that we'll never have back.

And I wonder, today, did I live to get by? 
Did I live for the deadlines?
Or did I love?

Goal: I want to see the beauty in others and in who God has made me to be and to smile, because none of us are bulletproof. 

I want to embrace these vulnerabilities, even in those moments I have to smile to keep from screaming.

He loves us. Don't forget.

To see the beaming smile of the check-out lady when I complimented her hair bow - maybe that was it. To see someone else feel known, appreciated. To truly see someone even when they might feel invisible. Maybe that is love. 

Prequel to the Love Series. What that is, remains to be seen. 

+ Yo yo yo my blogging people - has anyone else noticed the changes with Blogger lately? A new design? Is it just me? AM I GOING MAD?! 
Also, what is one way that you like to show love to people around you? 
Baking cookies is always acceptable.

Thursday, November 24, 2016

you know it's thanksgiving when...

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For photo credit, click here.
Happy Thanksgiving, my people! 
May your day be full of turkey, family, and giving thanks for all the glorious things that make life worth living 
You know it's Thanksgiving when...
1. You wake up with an extra spring in your step because 
2. Your mom is cooking in the kitchen from the crack of dawn
3. You can't stop thinking about eating pie and it's only 10:30 a.m.

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4. The Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade is on
5. Your dad is making hot cocoas with frothy whipped cream for the family
6. You're snuggled up in a cozy blanket on the couch
7. Christmas music is already playing and the Christmas tree is up because 

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8. Your news feed is filled with nothing but Thanksgiving posts
9. Someone stands up and prays a very tender-hearted Thanksgiving prayer
10. You can't wait to see your all your relatives because family is the best
11. ....but there's at least one or two awkward family moments because family is also crazy 

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12. You not only eat turkey and stuffing, but 3 turkey sandwiches, 17 slices of pumpkin pie and 2 dozen dinner rolls 
13. You go with your cousins for a walk around the block after dinner to walk off The Bloat

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13. Someone forgets to bring someone's Absolute Favorite Dish and a mini-breakdown/counseling session is held in the kitchen
14. Your uncle inevitably asks about school/boys/life accomplishments, leaving you to awkwardly mumble into your eighteenth piece of pie 

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+ Happy Thanksgiving, friends! I hope your day is the best. 
What are you most excited to eat today? I can't be the only one stoked for those dinner rolls, yo.

Sunday, November 13, 2016

i've been thinking too much: positivity edition

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Hey, y'all. I wanted to share something with you that has been on my heart as of late: positive thinking.

As a self-proclaimed Serial Overthinker, I have a lot of thoughts. A LOT. Which could potentially be a wonderful thing, provided that I'm thinking about something beautiful, like the mountains, or music, or cozy coffee shops.

But more often than not, the thoughts swirling around in my head are worries and fears about schoolwork or my body or the future, which in turn affects my mood and the way I view the world around me. And how I see others and myself changes how I treat people. 

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Something I have been learning about in my entrepreneurship class is direction. The direction in which we choose to approach a problem or goal can determine the outcome.

FOR EXAMPLE: If I wanted to learn to play the violin, but came at it thinking that I wasn't going to be very good, or that I couldn't do it, I might not be as successful in my violin lessons. 

This was so interesting to me: the way we think about things affects how we act. Perspective is so vital. Our thoughts influence how we hold ourselves, how we speak to others, our outlook on the day. So, I've been contemplating how my negative thought patterns are actually keeping me from living that full, joyful life that Christ died to bring me. 

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Changing my negative thoughts to positive ones is still something I'm thinking about, and I admittedly haven't figured it all out yet. But I'm excited to keep moving forward.

Thinking joyfully. Having a mindset of thanksgiving and prayer instead of trembling with fear and anxiety. Being grateful. Seeing myself and others the way God does. Replacing worry with the Word. Celebrating with others instead of envying them.

+ Blogging fam, I'd love to hear your heart on this matter. How do you approach positive thinking? How do you get rid of negative thoughts? Do you struggle with this, too? What encourages you?

Sunday, November 6, 2016

slytherin problems & jon foreman up a tree

Hey,'s November. Can you believe it? 

I can't. Not only is it barely cold where I live, but I only just had my first Pumpkin Spice Latte of the season a few days ago, and I've yet to wear any of my *seasonal sweaters.* Alas, fall, why do you taunt me so?

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Anyway, I've missed you all so much. I'm struggling to stay as closely knit in the blogging community as I feel I used to be, and this is largely because of the following excuses:
Work (gotta go to work, yo)

School (can't miss school, brah)

School Work (ain't no joke)

Writing my novel (AKA not writing my novel 
and watching YouTube videos and sleeping instead)*
*Literally. I told myself I would Be a Good Writer and Actually Participate in NaNoWriMo this year, but I ended up not writing anything on Nov. 1. Oh, the promises I've broken. *screams internally while giggling slightly and foaming at the mouth*

Meanwhile, cool things have been happening, such as that time I met a girl dressed in a Ravenclaw costume in the elevator at Halloween who promptly asked my Hogwarts House and when I said Slytherin recoiled instantly as if I had just threatened to bite her. 

I don't get it, why don't people think I'm friendly?? I'M SO INVITING


Distracting Side Note: According to this Hogwarts House hybrid quiz, I am half Ravenclaw and half Slytherin. So really, she shouldn't have been so scared.

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As you can tell, I've been having Way Too Much Fun with my Harry Potter class. Reading through the sixth book now, can't wait to finish!!

Other glories of October-November include collecting more vinyl, eating pumpkin oatmeal, buying some books at a library book sale and seeing Switchfoot and Relient K live. They were great, especially Switchfoot. The energy was insane; I mean, these dudes aren't in their 20's anymore, but they still brought it.

Also, Jon Foreman crowd surfed to a tree at the venue and then climbed it and continued the set.

Oh, Jon.

+ How has your fall been so far? Any notable experiences? Anything I can pray for you about?

+ BONUS JONAS! If you want a sad fall song to cry yourself to sleep to, click here. If you prefer a sunnier tune, click here