He is Fighting For Us

I just needed to share this song with you this morning. Because I’m having a tough morning. You know? I miss my family, I miss my old life, I am second-guessing everything, and honestly trying not to cry so I don’t ruin my makeup before work. Oh right—work. Gotta go do that thing all day. 
“Mighty is the One, who is strong to save, He will make a way….
Our God is fighting for us always, our God is fighting for us all…Our God is fighting for us always, we are not alone, we are not alone.
So I guess I just wanted to tell you, that if you’re having a morning, or week, or month like my morning, that you are not alone. You are not the only one there. God surrounds us with His light, and He is fighting for us. 
ALWAYS. 
Even when we don’t see it, feel it, or really even want to believe it.
Rest in that truth today, my dear friends. 

inCourage Community: Christian Singleness

I talk a lot about community here. I talk a lot about digging into life and setting down roots and really embracing the fellowship of the family of God. But I don’t talk too terribly often about Christian single-ness. I don’t usually talk about being the one who sits alone in church, or who watches Netflix on Friday nights or how often I practice the art of buying myself flowers 😛

Christian Singleness. Even saying it makes you cringe right? There is so much stigma surrounding singleness in our culture: if you’re “secular” and single—it’s great and you are pretty much given a free pass (unless you happen to be Prince Harry. Ahem.) If you’re Christian and single, and “of marriageable age,” (whatever people seem to think that means these days) they are constantly asking you if you have a boyfriend/ring/wedding date yet. 


This is where (in)Courage Community sessions step in. (in)Courage is one of the ministries of DaySpring, and they rock! They are starting a series of 40 community group sessions on different ‘seasons’ of life, different journeys and places along the Christian road, and asking leaders to encourage others along the way. They paired me up with Julie. Julie and I…well, we’re single girls, and we have been for awhile. We’re different ages and stages in our own lives, and we live on opposite sides of the country. But we’re hoping to build a community of like-minded women who want to approach Christian single-ness, not on tiptoes around stigma, but by embracing it with a heart of compassion and purpose.

We understand that this season–it isn’t just a season of waiting. Yes, we wait, but we are also preparing, growing, encouraging, and…working on contentment. We’re single. But that doesn’t mean we have to be lonely, hurt, jaded, bitter, unhappy, stagnant, waiting for life to begin, or any of those things. God still works in single people’s lives, friends. God still gives us tasks to accomplish, people to love and nourish, lives to build into…he gives us tough lessons to learn and he gives us MANY, MANY blessings. We’re here to encourage each other in this time. Let’s make it a fruitful time, so that we aren’t wasting it wishing and waiting. We can wait purposefully and with intention.
The first session runs October 2nd-December 2nd and doesn’t require any commitment from you. That just means that Julie and I will be actively participating in our group, offering encouragement in our unique ways, and seeking to connect with you. This is all so exciting!

 Join our community on Facebook!
We can’t wait to get to know you.

Psst….If our group/season of life isn’t the one for you, find the rest of them here!


Selah

This isn’t new, but it’s new to me. And it might be new to some of you, so I had to share. This story and song really spoke to my heart tonight.

Saturday Scones

An early morning baking. Bringing scones and a pink travel mug of hot tea to go garage sale-ing with friends. Reading a great magazine, Life: Beautiful. Have you seen this before? It’s the Christian version of Martha Stewart Living. I really enjoy it!! I urge you to find a copy, or perhaps subscribe. I found my copy, believe it or not, at Walgreens (!). Then perhaps a drive-in movie with the boyfriend? Enjoy a perfect Saturday, honeys!

Monday Mid Day

Monday Mid-Day (my fun font in the title doesn’t have a dash, sorry it looks weird) pick-me-ups!!

A beautiful song even more beautiful played live:

Princess Kate’s most gorgeous dress from June 9 (she looks so beautiful, but a bit too thin. Eat something at the next gala, Kate!):

{more pics of her outfit here, found on a google search}

A scene from a pretty picnic that I had with the boy yesterday:

{Lucy’s gluten-free cookies in the late-afternoon sunlight)


Also check out Jen’s adorably-adorable outfit today. I love it so much!!

Free Music Download!

Now I love free, and I love music, and I love Jesus. So, Good Girls, what’s better than a free 10-song Christian music download from the Creation Christian music festival?

Well, having this cold go away before the weekend would be better. And that rhubarb-white-chocolate ice cream sundae I have plans to make soon might also trump. But other than that, this is such an awesome thing!! The songs rock!!! Brandon Heath, Tenth Avenue North, Francesca Bastitelli (why is her name so darn hard to spell? I tried three times!), The Museum, KJ-52, and Chris August, and more!

Download it to your iTunes NOW!!!! Click HERE!

Delight in the Lord

Be faithful to enjoy the small things, dears. Be faithful to keeping your eyes open, your heart open, your self open. Keep space within yourself, so that you can be free to admire, to dream, to enjoy—to delight and to be delighted. I’ve been reading a book that said that our opportunity is to delight those around us. Can you imagine: families, workplaces, communities, where the sole purpose of fellowship with each other was to delight one another? How is that possible?! Well, when we delight in the Lord, He fills us to overflowing with joy. He is so faithful to overflow my life with joy when I spend quality time with Him. He allows my heart to be able and willing to delight others when I take delight in Him.
3 Trust in the LORD and do good;
   dwell in the land and enjoy safe pasture.
4 Take delight in the LORD,
   and he will give you the desires of your heart….
 23 The LORD makes firm the steps
   of the one who delights in him
;
24 though he may stumble, he will not fall,
   for the LORD upholds him with his hand.” 
Psalm 37
We have a joy that is untouchable, because our joy lies in Heaven. This world cannot take it away. Our struggles cannot overpower our joy.  
Our joy has RISEN!
And that, my dear friends, we must share.

Simplify to Exemplify

Simplify Your Life to Exemplify Christ is my new motto.

The importance of this has really come to the forefront of my life lately. How we need to have our lives ordered: temples of God, where there is space for him to enter, without us needing to sweep an armful of junk aside.

I’ve been reading about ordering my life from The Gentle Ways of the Beautiful Woman (wow, there’s a title for you!) by Anne Ortlund. Goodness, I have lots to learn from that title alone, not to mention the whole {rather thick} book.

After sifting through my life and reading lately, I’ve come up with a few guidelines:

1.) Simplify your thoughts.
2.) Simplify your commitments.
3.) Simplify your surroundings.
4.) Simply your devotion to Christ-like living.

One: Your mind is a temple of the Holy God. “Take captive EVERY thought, and make it obedient…” 2 Corin. 2:5b The Bible also reiterates over and over again how our minds are one of our most powerful (and therefore vulnerable) assets as human beings. There are many others who discuss this topic better than I do!

Two: Simplify what you devote your time to, where you invest your life. Think depth, not breadth. Another book, Only Angels Can Wing It, suggests these qualifications to any commitment: 1.) Will it matter in a week, month, or year? 2.) Does it fulfill a need of mine or of someone I love? 3.) Is there someone better suited to this who may be excited about the opportunity?

Three: Simplify your surroundings….I can breathe when I have a clean home, a made bed, and clean dishes. When we aren’t consumed with the “dailyness” of life getting away from us, we can be at rest in our minds and focus. We can have time to be still, space to listen.

Four: This one I made up entirely, I think. Be like a child with your faith. Come to the throne in awe, with a heart full of wonder. Realize that this is a relationship, not a rat-race with the others at church to see who is the “most Christian.” Live your life focused on GOD alone. Spend time getting to know where he wants you to put your thoughts and commitments.

~Discipline, you see? *my word for the year* The fruits of the spirit, right? Clearing out our lives so we are less likely to get lost in our negative thoughts, our commitments, or our messes. I’m working on it!