A Ray of Light

There are certain people in this world who absolutely radiate light. After spending the last week feeling pretty low, yesterday I got to spend the afternoon with my dear friend, Brooke. This girl completely embodies the beauty and love of Christ in all that she does. Whether she is snapping pictures for her up and coming photography business, Poeima Photography, or just spending time with friends, Brooke’s desire to further the kingdom of God is apparent in all that she does. I feel so blessed to know this lovely lady and I am so excited to see God using her in incredible ways in this world. Check out her work below and prepared to be absolutely STUNNED by her ability to capture each moment perfectly.

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Finding Joy…(even in hard times)

Life has been really hard lately. I’ve found myself in one of those lulls where all I want to do is curl up in a cozy blanket, eat cupcakes, and feel sorry for myself. YEP…I’ll be honest, it’s been on of those kinds of weeks.

A few weeks ago, I started this blog with The Joy of Sharing, where I shared my hearts greatest desire to share my life with others and spread light into the lives of those around me. But, after feeling sorry for myself all week and consuming copious amounts of coffee and chocolate,  I realized I wasn’t doing anyone any good by sharing only the good parts of life. Reality check: everyone has struggles.  I realized that I am not meant to share only the good parts of life, but also these struggles.

The other day a good friend shared a verse with me that opened my eyes and put everything I was going through into a better perspective.

“Not only so, but we also glory in our sufferings, because we know that suffering produces perseverance; perseverance, character; and character, hope. And hope does not put us to shame, because God’s love has been poured out into our hearts through the Holy Spirit, who has been given to us.” — Romans 5:3-5

I read this and my heart was completely undone. God is challenging me because He loves me. The circumstances of my day, my week, my month, my life will never outweigh God’s love for me. He is the only thing constant, unchanging, and never-ending, and it is Jesus alone that will satisfy my every need, want, and desire. I am designed to find contentment and fulfillment through God alone.

So, I admit it…finding joy in times of darkness is really hard. And I confess, I can often find myself consumed by the darkness around me and the circumstances of my day. But, when I look to the cross, I am blinded by the glorious light of Christ and I find my heart overwhelmed with pure joy.

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Mondays…

5am is my least favorite part of Mondays. With my alarm buzzing away in my ears, I am forced to drag myself out of my warm, cozy bed and face the day in a permanently under heated apartment. Through halfway closed eyes I stumble to the kitchen in a sleepy daze repeating to myself…”need. coffee. now.” Glamourous, huh? Everyone thinks I’m a total morning person…which I completely am, but catch me on a Monday before I’ve had my coffee and you will see a whole new side.

Mondays…ugh, right? What if I told you I actually love Mondays. It’s okay if you think that’s weird…because I even think it’s weird. Maybe I don’t enjoy the 5am wakeup call, but Mondays are probably my favorite day of the week. A fresh start, a new week, what’s not to love? Now I get it, Mondays usually mean “back to the grind” for most, but I feel like Mondays set the tone for your whole week. I mean, if you catch a bad case of the Mondays, your Tuesday probably won’t be too great either, and chances are if your Tuesday wasn’t very good, Wednesday isn’t looking too hot either….seeing a trend here?

What if we all made a commitment to make Monday our best day….couldn’t that change everything? Maybe this is crazy, maybe we’re all just wired to truly dread Mondays. BUT, try it….see what happens. Set a goal, buy yourself a coffee, run an extra mile, eat a donut, buy a new book, take the long way home…anything to make YOU find a little more joy in Monday.

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The Joy of Sharing

There is so much joy that can be found in sharing with others. I’m not talking the first grade version of sharing; “Here friend, you can have one of my Oreo’s today!’ I’m talking sharing of a deeper kind. One that comes out of a pure, selfless, and loving heart. Over the last few years, I have really come to know what this means and what it really looks like.

I have always been one to share my thoughts, opinions, and ideas with anyone who will listen for two seconds. I don’t like keeping things to myself, I want to spread anything good that I stumble upon to everyone around me. Whether it’s a new recipe, a hidden gem of a store I found, a book I liked, a good song I heard, a hairstyle I tried, running shoes I like, a fun craft idea, to name a few….I want to tell the world. Now, I know that probably seems silly to some, but that’s me!

I know that my recommendations may often go unnoticed or unheard, but if I can bring the slightest bit of happiness to just one person, then I find myself overjoyed. You see, this is how I try to live my life in SO many aspects. Although I know I am just one simple girl in a world full of creatives, artists, intellectuals, and dreamers…I am a sharer, I am a do-er, I am a giver, I LOVE people, I love bringing others happiness, I love sharing, I love giving…these things are my hearts greatest joy.

It is my hope that I can be a light to those around me, a ray of sunshine through the clouds, a beam of hope in dark moment, a spark that can ignite something…what that something is, I’m not sure. But God has placed it on my heart to be a sharer in this world where we can all too often be consumed by our own selfishness. You see, it would be selfish of me to feel this way and not pursue this calling to share my life, my thoughts, my opinions, my hopes, and my dreams with the world.

One of my favorite Bible verses is a true testament to this joy of sharing.

 “You are the light of the world. A town built on a hill cannot be hidden. Neither do people light a lamp and put it under a bowl. Instead they put it on its stand, and it gives light to everyone in the house. In the same way, let your light shine before others, that they may see your good deeds and glorify your Father in heaven.” — Matthew 5:14-16

So here I am, getting ready for what feels like it could be a great adventure…and I’m going to let my light shine.

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