Put On Your Crown, Ladies

Wednesday, September 23, 2015

She x Eclectic-0831She x Eclectic-0836She x Eclectic-0830Dress c/o: SheInside | Shoes: Dolce Vita | Crown & Pictures c/o Kim Jurgens
For some reason, I think so many of us tend to go through life forgetting how valued we are. I get how this happens, but yet still it boggles my mind that it's so difficult for us to keep a grip on it. Now, I'm going to spin things a little differently than you're probably used to hearing about how we value ourselves. I usually try to identify with what I believe to be is the majority of my audience. However, this particular post, might be geared towards a few one-percenters. Or maybe even this post may just be for me.
I've always had a lot of self worth. I've always known I wasn't perfect - being messy by nature with a quick tongue, I never thought that was a possibility for me. But I've always known my worth. If anything, the struggle of entitlement has laid heavy on my heart. I never thought I wasn't worth it. I would more so be frustrated by the fact that other people couldn't REALIZE how worth it I was! But this is where it gets odd. Despite my knowledge of my worth, I would walk into situations with timidity, unsure if others would understand the value I knew I had. Will they like me? Will they think I'm worth it? Will I fit in? Many times the answer was no. Now looking back, thankfully many times when it counted, the answer was yes.
It wasn't until very recently that I even realized I'd been doing this my entire life. Like honestly, since playground days. I've always liked me. But contrary to my previous beliefs, I've also always been hyper conscious of how others perceive me as well. This isn't to say I've based my entire life around others opinions. I'm not say going to say I haven't made my mistakes, but what I will say is that fundamentally how someone viewed me never really caused me to go down a different path or set my whole life off track. But what it did do, was cause me to have different perceptions of my value and eventually instilled a sense of fear in me. As time has gone on, the knowledge of these perceptions made me to feel more guarded. Made me feel like I had to be more careful with who I shared my feelings with - because how someone handled these intangible, precious things would tell me all I needed to know. With who I would let see all the parts of me and love me all the same. And with who I would in return. And as time has gone on, I've realized the number dwindled down to zero. I think everyone has pieces, but after too many times of getting my feelings handed back to me twisted, broken and mangled it honestly didn't seem so worth it any longer to so openly share pieces of what made me, me. So I started closing doors. I wore unforgiveness like a badge of honor, that eventually turned into my very own scarlet letter. And I didn't let God come into my heart and take it. I stored them up, like I was getting ready for hibernation. I allowed other people's views and treatment of me to affect my perception of trust. And thus unfortunately to affect the way in which I viewed trusting God.
The other day, two friends - one new and one old so graciously opened up to me about things they were feeling. One cut not too deep, but obviously not the first time it had occurred. One a gnashing wound. I saw such beauty in them being honest in the moment about what was hurting them. In that very moment, in their hurt, choosing to open themselves up yet again. This was truly amazing to me. When I've been cut, even recalling the situation weeks or months after causes me to twinge (twitch + cringe) deep inside. And here they were, ripping off the bandaid, wounds open and blood spilling in all it's freshness. And it's occurring to me now, that they get it. They get that you take the hurting thing to the Father, right then and there - at the earliest point that you realize it and you're able or even once you realize you can't handle it anymore. And you ask him to take it. And His blood, in all it's freshness pours over it. It pours over you. Over the situation. Over the hurt, the past, the present, and the future. And instead of seeing some mess of sorrows and disappointment and rejection and fear, you find it's miraculously all clean.
And that's the gospel my friends. When Jesus came and gave his life to die for us on a cross, the veil was torn. No longer were we here and God over there - distant from us. He is up close and personal and we are even able to have Him dwell within us. IT IS A GIFT. We are FREELY given. And when He sees us, he doesn't see the shame. He doesn't see someone who deems themself useless or entitled. He doesn't see someone marked by bitterness and resentment or someone who had it coming. He doesn't look at us and see us marked up with sin. He sees His son Jesus. He sees us righteous and clean. He sees Himself dwelling within us and He calls us his sons and daughters, heirs to the kingdom of Heaven. So put on your crowns ladies, because whatever you're facing, whatever you're struggling with, whatever it is you're going through, whatever it is you have allowed yourself to believe of be consumed with for far too long, let me tell you something: it doesn't matter. God has made the claim for your value and He has called you royalty.
She x Eclectic-0834 She x Eclectic-0802 She x Eclectic-0826She x Eclectic-0832
with all the best I can give,

long dresses

"Fight Bravely"

Monday, August 3, 2015

This blog, I miss it.

I feel like I haven't touched it in so long and in that time so many things have happened. So many thoughts have been bubbling in my mind and things have been placed on my heart. And I think today, it finally came to the point where I knew I had to share.

I've been reading this book called Anything with an awesome group of ladies, and it's been shaking me and my mentality up when I really felt like I was entering a little slump. There's this line that says "It should not surprise us if life is hard, especially if we love Jesus. We are at war - not in heaven. And yet it always does surprise us... There is freedom in understanding that heaven is coming and we are not there yet. We're called to live, instead, aware that we are at war with a ruthless enemy who is trying to destroy us if we are living surrendered to Jesus."

Isn't this true?! It's crazy how entitled I can feel when problems and hard times arise, when I should pretty much be expecting them to be knocking at my door.

It goes on to reference Ephesians 6 saying "First, remember who you are fighting. You are not fighting flesh and blood, the people hurting you- their sting- you are not fighting them. You are fighting rulers and authorities and cosmic powers over this present darkness. You are fighting the forces of evil in heavenly places."

Again, how true is this? How often do we let ourselves get wrapped up in people and the hurt they cause us? Allowing ourselves to build resentment or anger towards people when they aren't even the true problem at hand. It gets so easy to focus on the pestering things in front of us, and take our eyes off of God Almighty, who resides within the hearts of those who love Him. Which makes me think about how we are so quick to downplay the gravity of that word. ALMIGHTY. Mighty and able to do ALL things. Wow.

Then, in visiting The Upper Room and hearing Psalm 46 again last night (which was so soothing to my soul) I was reminded of these words:

"God is our refuge and strength, an ever-present help in trouble. Therefore we will not fear, though the earth give way and the mountains fall into the heart of the sea, though its waters roar and foam and the mountains quake with their surging...God is within her, she will not fall; God will help her at the break of day. Nations are in uproar, kingdoms fall; he lifts his voice, the earth melts. The Lord Almighty is with us; The God of Jacob is our fortress."

Sometimes it's easy to forget just how BIG He is. The zillions of things he watches and tends to and heals every second of every day. It's truly amazing. Like really, what is more amazing than Him and what He's done and continues to do every day? And to be able to have HIM reside in my heart tells me that I can do a lot more than my mind tells me I can.

I've been reeeallly blessed to have some amazing women praying over me the past couple of weeks and helping walk through all of this and unfold these realizations. Not everything is going to make sense. Not everything is going to be easy. But with the insatiable knowledge that we were made for so much more than our carnal minds can typically fathom, it's kind of a really incredible honor to be able to partake in something so grand. On top of this, I see that I'm so blessed to be reminded that through hiccups, and less than pleasant feelings is an opportunity to receive so much grace, more understanding, and more of Jesus.

"Count it all joy my brothers, when you meet trials of various kinds, for you know that the testing of your faith produces steadfastness." James 1:2-3

So I leave you with this. Words Jennie Allen​, the author of Anything, felt the Lord was telling her at a particularly difficult season in life.

"You protect yourself with me. You bind truth to the front of you so when darkness comes you remember me. You remember I am bigger. You remember I win. You remember I am with you today and forever; even if you can't see me, I am there. You put my Word, my truth, in front of you. Protect yourself with me and my righteousness. And then, you run. Let your feet carry you into battle, building my name, sharing my love, telling my story, showing my glory. Go. Run. Fight. Do not just sit there feeling sorry for yourself. Run and fight. Let your shield be faith. See, if I am real to you- if you believe you stand behind the God of the universes- you won't need to be afraid. You may get tired but you won't forget why this war matters if you don't forget me. You'll fight bravely, like someone who knows she fights for a cause worth dying for. You'll keep fighting if you see me. You have me with you - I am in you. Fight bravely because I am for you and I am with you."

See What Others Can't See (ASUS + She, In The Making)

Thursday, June 18, 2015

I got the opportunity this month to work with ASUS USA on their See What Others Can't See (#SWOCS) Campaign for the ASUS Zenfone2. I was so excited when I first received this ASUS product, and my excitement just continued from there once I saw all of the amazing features this phone has. This camera phone sports 13 megapixels and has an aperture that can go as low as 2.0 so it was a photographer's dream to receive one. Not to mention the amount of space this phone has allows me to take large, high-resolution images non-stop. Which is exactly what I did. It is perfect for someone who is shutter happy like I am.

I was so glad I got to take this phone on my trip to Miami with me and document all of the amazing stops we visited.  And even after that, it's been my trusty companion for everything from product shoots to hanging out with friends or a day at the museum. It's been such a treat to take this phone through my everyday life and document the way that I "see" things. Being a creative, having the ability to have tools which allow you to express your creative voice and also try new things is invaluable. Which is one of the reasons I've found this phone to be such a treasure. With it's unique settings and the ability to even shoot in manual mode, it's tweaked my creative thinking and allowed me to push limits on what I thought a camera phone could do. I have included some photos of all of the above below, so click through to continue reading and make sure to enter the See What Others Can't See Contest for your own chance to win a Zenfone2!




Tuesday, April 14, 2015

Lately, I've been eating a lot of lies. Like a lot of lies that I've been telling myself. It's really weird because I've always considered myself as someone with a lot of self-confidence and hopefully a lot of humility. But recently, it's been seeming that I've blurred the lines and in the process, lost the true definition of humility. In this process, I feel like in my earnest quest of remaining humble, my self confidence has been something that's been consistently attacked. 
I hear myself discounting myself again and again and again and again. I don't even notice it until moments afterwards oftentimes, when I discount my gut, my talents, anything. And it makes me SO UPSET. It has always upset me when I see my friends and people who surround me do that to themselves and so it makes me mad that I'm 1) creating that example as well 2) fueling that mentality instead of believing in myself and 3) discounting who God created me to be and the gifts and talents He bestowed in me.

I'm not perfect and I never will be, but that's the glory of it all. I don't need to be and I also don't need to remind everyone every step of the way of how un-perfect I am. "I'm a treasure, in the arms of Christ." God still considers us so valuable and gives us so many opportunities, to learn, grow, excel, and to use our gifts for something bigger than we are. I don't need to go around town shouting things like "I'm the best this or that!" but I do need to take a moment when I'm complimented to humbly accept instead of talking myself into inadvertently criticizing each gift I've been given.

Let's think of it this way. If your best friend gave you something especially crafted for you, you could tell he/she put a lot of thought into it, thought about your heart and your personality and the person you were created to be and created this incredible gift just for you, how would you treat it? Would you go around saying "Aww, it's not that great. I bet yours is better. It's not that special, you could easily have it too."? Or would you say "Wow, I've really been blessed with such a great and caring best friend and I feel very fortunate that someone who cares this much about me would give me something as precious as this, that gives me this much joy and fulfillment."?

It's the same thing my friends. God is that best friend and the gifts He's given you are not to be ignored or taken lightly. They are valuable; they are treasures. They're meant to help, aide, and guide you in the directions He leads; in pursuing your dreams, in fulfilling your calling, and in walking in your purpose.

So here's another post, written by me, directed towards me, that will hopefully encourage someone other than me out there!

lots of hugs,

A Day In The Life

Monday, April 13, 2015

Today, I got the opportunity to be featured on Chelcey Tate's blog series "A Day In The Life"! Discussing my daily routine, some of my favorite blogs, and how I got started in all this fun, creativeness! Check out the interview here and also enter for a fun little giveaway!

playing it cool

Sunday, March 29, 2015

jeweled top | jeans | similar shoes | glasses | photographer: my sweet mentee clarissa 
coat is a European find c/o Mrs. Catherine!

I think I've been trying to play it cool, when really things have been all over the place, in the best way honestly. 
However, despite all the goodness entering my life, my thoughts have been drifting back a lot to perception - specifically other's perception of me. When I started blogging and sharing my thoughts and feelings, or what have you, in this little corner of the internet,  I never really considered it. I knew I wanted to put my voice out there into the world. I knew I always had this innate desire to connect with someone I would have never met otherwise - or possibly would never meet- but to feel connected nevertheless because there was this a similar belief that pumped through our veins.  But I never thought twice about what I was writing because I just wrote about what rang true to me. About what was placed on my heart, about what I believed, about what stages I was going through. And over time, it suddenly turned into this amazing place where I've received an overwhelming community of support and love and some pretty incredible friendships.  It's pretty magnificent what Jesus can do with the internet.

 But over time, especially in this year, I've realized there have been times where I've been hesitant to share more of my heart here. Where I'm at. Where I'm going through. Whether it be because I'm nervous for some unforseen reason, or I'm afraid how it will be taken, or because I think maybe it's just not what people are interested in seeing. But fear -- well, that's not how this place started out. I earnestly want this to be a place where people can come to feel understood, and not alone in this crazy journey, but I also want it to be a place where people leave feeling more than that. Whether it be more inspired, more refreshed, more knowledgable, more interested in something new, or just like they're more than enough. 

So as this little corner of the internet grows, I just wanted to share my heart regarding this blog with you.  I want to keep it centered around that mission. And I want to thank you so much for being a part of this journey. I've been saying this for a while now, but I promise -- much more goodness is to come!

love you guys,

31 Bits X She, In The Making

Monday, March 23, 2015

I was recently given the opportunity to collaborate with 31 Bits, an incredible brand that helps make our world a better place by empowering people to rise above poverty. I have been following 31 Bits for years now and have always admired their mission and beautiful pieces. I was so honored when they contacted me and asked me to style the Creative bracelet from their Classics Collection. The Creative bracelet is for "women who can't be contained by rules or tradition, that are too busy creating masterpieces. Everything they touch turns to gold!" Each piece is handmade out of 100% recycled paper and helps support women artisans in Uganda. I feel so fortunate to have been able to collaborate with such an amazing brand. Check out the collection here and learn more about the 31 Bits mission!