Posted in Devotion, Encouragement, Hope, Jesus, Life, Love, Uncategorized

New Year, New Worries?

Hello 2018,

This is something I have been trying to write in my head for days now. Waiting to have something good, a nugget for this year. A way to better myself in the new year. Well I am not one for New Year’s resolutions. I’ll tell you this, everyday is a new day, an opportunity to change yourself for the better. Or some days, the not so better. You feel? However, each day the sun rises because He is faithful. And that gives each of us a brand new day to change, grow, and learn, about God and about ourselves.

This year I’ve been trying to think about who I want to be, more specifically what kind of person, friend, girlfriend, daughter, student, and sister. I’ve been trying to think about what needs evaluated in my life to get better. I’ve been praying some big things for 2018. Most of which are going to play themselves out in God’s perfect timing. My boyfriend is job hunting, and that’s tough. My parents are working really hard for my mom’s business to flourish. My sister is in high school, and we all know how many trials there are there. My brother is becoming a young preteen and growing to become the person he will be. For myself, it’s my first full year attending OT school (I survived 1 term, what’s seven more?)

God is good. God is good. God is good.

All of those things will work out for HIS timing. Maybe not in the way we’d expect, but none the less. They bring worry. Worry of not fitting in, not making the money you need, not being able to find a job, not passing. All of this is just to say thinking about all of these things, and the uncertainty of life is just so prevalent right now. I am in the process of reading a devotional called Flourish: Live Loved. Live Fearless. Live Free. By Margaret Feinberg. After a long prayer about how I wanted this year to go, I open the devo only to read something that slapped me so spiritually hard across the face, I smiled. He is good.

I challenge you if you’ve read this before ask God to show you something new. He sure showed me…

“So do not worry, saying ‘what shall we eat?’ or ‘What shall we drink?’ or ‘What shall we wear?’ For the pagans run after all of these things, and your heavenly Father knows that you need them. But seek first his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well. Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own.” -Matthew 6: 31-34

Did you catch it? Mostly people focus on the do not worry about tomorrow… but here read it again.

“So do not worry, saying ‘what shall we eat?’ or ‘What shall we drink?’ or ‘What shall we wear?’ For the pagans run after all of these things, and your heavenly Father knows that you need them. But seek first his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well. Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own.” -Matthew 6: 31-34-

HE KNOWS!

Friend he sees you, and your concerns, worry, and doubt. He hears you and he will provide. He is faithful. That stuck out so much this morning! I hope it can encourage you too. He knows what is to come, for tomorrow, for this week, for 2018, and forever. That is freeing. It gives us so much more time to feel joy, and enjoy this good good life. And if you’re like me and don’t know what you want out of this year yet. Shoot for one thing first. His plan. And then Joy. You won’t regret it.

Happy 2018, may it be the best year yet! Full of growth, new beginnings, challenges, and joy! Always Joy.

XOXO,

Alie

Posted in Encouragement, Food, Uncategorized

Smoothie Bowls and Sundays

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For the Smoothie: Blend all ingredients together, pour into a bowl.

1/2 cup frozen blueberries

1 banana

1/2 cup frozen strawberries

Small handful of baby spinach

Unsweetened Vanilla Almond Milk (enough to blend to whatever consistency you prefer)

Toppings:

1 kiwi sliced

A Few chunks of frozen pineapple

Chia seeds

Flax seeds – whole

A sprinkle of frozen raspberries

ENJOY!

It is really that easy!

 

“Delight yourself in the Lord and he will give you the desires of your heart.”

-Psalm 37:4-

XOXO,

Alie

Posted in Encouragement, Hope, Love, Suicide, Uncategorized

You Matter to Me

Hey y’all,

I’ve been thinking a lot the last week about life. How precious it is, how fast it goes by, and how we need to make every moment count. There was news from my home town that a boy committed suicide, he was a friend of my younger sister’s boyfriend. When I got the text from my mom, my heart broke. For the family, for my sister and her boyfriend. For the kid who thought his life didn’t matter. The boy who had so many things going on in his mind, that he felt there was no other option.

Friend, if that is you today, can I tell you, I have been there…

I know what it’s like to feel like no one cares, to feel like you’ll never find love, like no one likes you, like you are an outcast, like you aren’t enough.

Can I tell you that those things come from the enemy? Those things are anything but true. Why? Because he comes to kill, steal, and destroy.

Kill your dreams… You can’t do that, you never will be good enough

Steal your joy… No one loves you, or will ever love you, you have nothing, no reason to be here

Destroy your Story…Nothing you do will ever make a difference, you will always stick out. 

Friend, I feel your pain, I do. If anyone hasn’t told you today, I care about you. Truly, I do. I also have good news! God cares about you too, and all those things are lies, whispered to you by the enemy. Who would do anything to get you to believe him, over the word of God!

BUT…THIS IS WHAT THE GOOD NEWS SAYS!

He comes to give hope and a future! (Jeremiah 29:11)

You are fearfully and wonderfully made! (Psalm 139:14)

The joy of the Lord is your STRENGTH! (Nehemiah 8:10)

You can laugh with no fear of the future! (Proverbs 31:25)

You can be strong and courageous! (Joshua 1:9)

He so loved YOU, that he gave his son to die for you! (John 3:16)

In him you can find rest! (Matthew 11:28)

If you don’t believe it, or feel like it could be true for you, let me just tell you that half of this life goes on up top. In your mind, there are a lot of brilliant dreams, plans, hopes, goals, and aspirations.

You are the only YOU.

There will never be anyone else just like you, because you are here on purpose. You are perfectly made by the creator of all things. You have a purpose, that only you can do! You may be sitting and hearing all the reasons why you can’t. But can I tell you one thing, the Lord will never lead you astray. He will guide your path, and give you the purpose he designed for you, if you let him!

About 8 years ago I found out we were going to be moving to FL, I thought my life was ending! My parents were the worst, they were trying to take away my whole life. Etc Etc. I wanted to go back “home” so badly, on the way to FL, I was in the lowest of the low mindset, mind you, there were other factors to this. But, I just felt like there was nothing left for me. Hopeless. Thoughts of taking my life crossed my mind, many times, thankfully a friend talked with me, and adjusted my thinking. Made me realize how much there was to be thankful for, and to look forward to.

Looking back over the past eight years, and thinking about all of the wonderful things that were yet to come, overwhelms me with feelings. In those eight years, I have met the man of my dreams, graduated from high school, community college, college, and now am attending graduate school (for a major a few years ago I’d never even heard of)! I joined a sorority, I made friends, I’ve had jobs some good, some not so good. I’ve had birthdays, and parties with people that I care about. I’ve grown, realized how much of life there is to enjoy.

Friend, a few years back, I never would’ve dreamed that I would be where I am, and it hasn’t always been easy. I still struggle daily with insecurities, but I am always working on them, asking God for guidance.

Please know, if you are considering that there is nothing left here for you, there is. SO MUCH. God has big plans for you. I believe in you, I care about you, and so does He. You are on purpose. You have purpose. Be strong and courageous. Reach out, ask for help, I so glad that I did.

You are so loved.

XOXO,

Alie

Posted in Encouragement, Hope, Uncategorized

Pencil in Time

Hey friends! It’s been awhile. There are so many great things I could tell you about graduate school, life etc. But I wanted actually talk a little bit about all of those, and the main thing TIME. Which most days, seems like we don’t actually have enough of!

Grad School has taught me a few things:

  • There is no more “I don’t read textbooks,” you kind of have to, too bad, so sad. Bleh.
  • They tell you not to work during grad school because holy moly, it is a job.
  • Having that said “job” is literally reading/note writing/ lecture watching/lab doing/note writing, and repeat, day in and day out.

SOOO? My question to you is what things in your life do you need to do or accomplish? (Stay with me there is a point). Let’s look at one week. Job, bills, gas, groceries, eating healthy, gym time, school/work, kids?, family? significant others? time for leisure? drive time. That is just a few of the things that some people deal with daily, not to mention the little things around the house like laundry, cleaning etc.

As of the last few weeks have progressed it became very clear this stage of my life was not going to be like undergrad. There is no more “Sure I can do this later and go out for awhile,” because it is so lengthy and important that there is no time…. or is there?

See friends, over the last couple weeks I’ve noticed, that I want to make time for fun things too, and not feel the chaos or guilt of thinking I should be studying. So I’ve been making myself wake up EARLY! OH GOSH. I know….not what you want to hear right?

Stay with me though….

We have so many roles, tasks, and things to accomplish in our daily lives. But during all of this you have to also achieve peace. Peace knowing that the King of Kings is guiding your path. That he put you here on purpose.

Waking up early, is a lot easier when you realize who you are living your life for! Sure, when my alarm goes off the first thing I think is well, I could just skip that and sleep more. But oh, when I get up, get to the gym, shower, make coffee, have my quiet time with my bible, have more coffee and get to start my day, all before 8:30! To me that is just a glimmer into my life that is to come when I take on other roles. Like wife, employee, mother. These are things that successful role models in my life, do all the time!! I used to think they were insane for getting up early. Now….I’m one of them.

I am not saying it’ll be easy. BUT, it will be worth it. Y’all…there are never any regrets you could have with getting up to make the most of your day. I challenge you to try it. And if you are struggling, just remember it is habit forming, it will take time!

Also remember to call on the Lord, and ask him for help in this. It may seem silly, but if you truly want to live your life for the Lord, let him guide, mold, and shape your habits to best glorify him! Maybe there are some he wants to clean out of you? There was some in my life.

If you’re like me this morning, and up before the sun, I hope your day is smooth sailing and full of blessing. And if you are not up that early this morning, I pray that maybe this speaks to your heart, and your need for a better routine. Find time for the things that matter, before you spend 20 years developing things that are going no where.

“Do not grieve, for the joy of the Lord is your strength.” -Nehemiah 8:10b-

P.S. Here’s a picture of what beauty you get to see when you’re up before the sun!

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XOXO,

Alie

Posted in Uncategorized

Live Every Day Loving and Being Loved

A lot has been happening in the last couple weeks! We moved some of my things up to my new condo, my grandmother turned 80, and we’ve had lots of family in town! I love that we got to end my time at home, and my eight month “spiritual retreat” with a bang.

Having family around, is one of the most crazy, fun, and tiring things ever. And with my family, it is anything but quiet. We’re loud, we love food, and the conversations are ever filled with laughter. It makes my heart so full. What makes your heart feel full?

Something else that made my heart so happy is the surprise party for my grandma who is EIGHTY! Holy wow, when did that happen?? We’ve had this secret planned for like five months, and we got her good! She had no idea! And she couldn’t believe we did it.

On a side note…. does this woman look eighty???

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Also, this is the best picture I had with them all night considering I was behind the camera most of the time and my mom doesn’t like using my “fancy camera.” HA!

Point being, just having all the attention on her and celebrating was great. But my favorite part of the night was after we’d played her a video of everyone who couldn’t be there (she loved it)!

I went and asked my grandpa what he thought of the video. And he sat silent for a second only to say, well it was good. But, November 18th, 1956 was the best day of my life. (It’s their anniversary). He followed that by saying it is going to be 61 years this November, and that he’s thankful to be here, and that this year is better than last.

Two things about this, this man does not get emotional. He loves his wife, kids, and family, but he’s not always one to be sappy. I think his 82 years has brought that out of him.

But the second on is that last year, he was in the hospital, for a few weeks, and came out of that weak. We all weren’t sure if that would be the last times we got to spend with him. His first few days were spent there, while my other family was in town for my grandma’s birthday.

He talked a lot to my mom about how he felt bad for ruining the day for her. When we all got home that night before her birthday, I stayed up late making her a cake, that I know, that next day when she blew out the candles, even without her saying so, she wished for him to get better.

My grandparents have never really been outwardly affectionate people, but those few moments of little notions of love (deeper than you can post about on Facebook), are the ones that fill my heart with the fondest memories.

I know that someday they will not be with us anymore, but I hope I can live a long happy life, where I can look back and say that my wedding day, and every day since, has been among the best days of my life.

Friends, our time is short. But I want you to know today, that you are loved. So so loved.

“For God so loved the world that he gave His one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life” -John 3:16-

XOXO,

Alie