Tag: faith

When You Know Better, Do Better

Lesson Learned from Grace to Serve – Part 2

The older I get the one thing that I continue to be astounded by is the bad, immature, and selfish behavior by those around me. I’m not talking about children or even teenagers, but the adults that I encounter on a regular basis. On a day to day basis, I am appalled by the lack of basic social manners and decency towards each other that is displayed. (see my post here about kindness) Scrolling through social media, at times, I’m surprised to see how many of my high school classmates are still behaving just as they did when we were in high school.

Not that I am sitting in a place to judge anyone, but most of my classmates and I are 40 years old now or older. Something about us should have changed and matured a bit. We should be making wiser choices and setting positive examples for the younger ones who are coming up under us.

The same thing applies to us in the Christian life. As my pastor said in Part 2 of his series, Grace to Serve, we have to start to grow up in our relationship with God AND with other people. Day after day, year after year, there is no way we should be the same.

But this is not something that magically happens. When you wake up on your next birthday, you don’t automatically just become a better person. (Ask any child how they feel on their birthday and they’ll tell you “the same as yesterday.”) Getting older doesn’t guarantee wisdom, maturity, nor good, sound judgement. Now, we’re all entitled to our mistakes, but does that mean we should be able to make that same “mistake” over and over again?

Does it mean that we can go through life completely oblivious to how our words and actions impact others?

Of course, it doesn’t. Hence the title of this post: When you know better, do better! 

What is your ultimate goal in life? Is it just to please your own selfish nature and then die? Is it to gain a bunch of worldly wealth and then die? Is it just to have all the fun you can have regardless of the consequences and then die? You know the reasoning that You Only Live Once. Some of us have used it as a justification to get away with anything and everything instead of as an opportunity to live a rich, fulfilling life where you worked not only to make yourself happy but to positively impact the world around you.

Every day we have the choice of whether or now we will remain the same or if we will become a better version of ourselves. Pastor told us that we are to work towards maturity in God, that we are to bear much good fruit, and that our ultimate goal is to be more like Him (Jesus).

I’m not sure what that looks like for you, but for me it means being a better person each day, striving to make a positive impact wherever I go, choosing how I will react to situations, and purposely, intentionally choosing to love those who are difficult to love.

I am working to do my part while here on earth and part of that deals with leaving childish things behind and behaving as a grown woman. Thinking, speaking, and reasoning like a grown woman. I may be a child of God, but that doesn’t mean that I shouldn’t “grow” up.

I will seek the counsel of wise people. I will adjust my attitude, my mindset. I will work hard to see people the way that God does, to serve them for Him. I will work hard to help others achieve their goals. I will not allow greed, jealousy, envy, selfishness, or insecurities to rule me. I will let love be my guide: love for God, love for myself, love for others. I will not rely on myself to do it all either because I know that I can’t do it all alone. 

But most of all, I will strive to be more and more like Jesus every day. That is the ultimate goal! Choosing to become more and more like Him is a true sign of maturity. 

Boss Lady Moves Interview #1: Sabrina Hayes – Pursuing Her Calling

Boss Lady Move – making a major change in your life in order to pursue your dreams, your passions, your goals and become your own boss

We all use social media for many different reasons whether it’s to keep up with good friends, reunite with old friends, to be nosy and spy on other people’s lives, or to just be “social.” However, social media has changed so much over the last few years and so have the reasons that people use it. It has gone from just a way to socialize to a way to interact with like-minded people, a way to learn something new, a way to connect with people around the world, and a way to grow your business.

This is how I met Boss Lady Sabrina Hayes. After becoming a consultant with Thirty-One Gifts, I quickly realized just how much I did NOT know about direct sales. And although my director, Nikki Lee, was extremely helpful, I knew that I could not solely rely on her to learn everything about how to run my business. As a matter of fact, it is because of Nikki Lee that I found out about these Facebook groups where I could interact with other Thirty-One sisters, learn and exchange ideas with them, and where we could congratulate and encourage one another. Then I stumbled upon a Sabrina Hayes’ video where she was sharing her ideas, and everything changed.

Sabrina was a Thirty-One leader and guru. Everyone wanted to be a part of the Facebook group that she helped to run, The Big Pink Playground. I, too, tried to suck in as much knowledge as possible and used a few of her ideas to help grow my business. But I could tell, as others could as well, that there was something different about Sabrina, something that made people want to just sit down and listen. That’s why when she announced to us through heartfelt tears that she was leaving Thirty-One, we were all in shock and very upset. Why would she leave something that she obviously was so skilled at doing? Why would she leave when she was at the top of her game and killing it? What would we do without her?

Well, the Sabrina-withdrawal was short-lived. Sabrina also announced that she was leaving Thirty-One because her heart was in ministry, and she could not ignore her calling from God. While we were devastated that she was leaving the company, most of us were happy that we would not completely lose the wisdom and insight that comes from listening to her. In addition, most of us were just downright in awe of her and her decision to make such a big move and to pursue her dream. Who leaves a career when they are at the top, seem to love it so much, and are loved and admired because of it?

Sabrina Hayes did. And she started this beautiful ministry called Sanctuary Girl and eventually became the owner/CEO of The Affirmation Shop. Here is some information from her website about Sanctuary Girl.

The mission of Sanctuary Girl is to minister to women through the weekend retreat experience in a way that brings them into the safety and security of truly resting in who they are in the eyes of God:

Strong | Loved | Powerful | Redeemed | Enough

Discovering God’s Word, His affirmations of us as women, the innate gifts that He has endowed upon us each individually, and enabling the fellowship of women from all over the country together to lift each other up and fill those empty places through the retreat experience, is the mission of Sanctuary Girl.

I’ve attended two of her retreats, and let me just say that they are life-changing! (Read here about one of my revelations that I got while there.) Once you go, you’ll never be the same. Her retreats have a way of connecting a group of women who are essentially strangers and giving them the opportunity to talk, pray, cry, reflect, and laugh. No one leaves a retreat the same way that they came. No one. This is why I had to interview her for this series because not only did she make a Boss Lady Move by abruptly leaving Thirty-One and starting Sanctuary Girl, she also created a positive brand which includes inspirational clothing, jewelry, home decor, and other accessories including one of my favorites, the Sanctuary Girl Faith Planner. I admire her for all that she has been able to accomplish over the past year as well as her willingness to step out on faith. She has been a huge factor in my quest to make my own Boss Lady Moves.

Enjoying the Santa Monica Pier on my second retreat

 

  • Who has been the biggest source(s) of inspiration for you? Jesus. I pattern everything I do and say after Him. He is the only one I desire to emulate. Hands down.
  •  What would you say is a Boss Lady Move? Just taking a leap. It’s about more than just getting stuff done. It’s being bold enough to even take that first scary step. That’s a boss.
  • What motivated you to make your Boss Lady Move? There was more to my life, my gifts, my purpose than what I was doing before, and in order to do that, in order to pursue that, I just had to jump. I am so happy that I did.
  • What is the best advice you’ve ever gotten? Fear kills more dreams than failure ever will. That kicked me in the butt.
  • What three tips would you give to a woman wanting to make a Boss Lady Move? 
    • Gather your tribe. Surround yourself with women who are positive, believe in you, and won’t let you fail.
    • Put God first. Otherwise, you are relying on your own strength and by doing this, you will fail. You can’t do it without Him.
    • Have an open mind. Success doesn’t always look like you think it will. Be willing to learn and try new things.
  • Describe your typical “work” day. I always starts with quiet time. If my thoughts with God aren’t right first, then my day doesn’t go right. After that, I try to spend only one hour on each task in order to avoid the day becoming mundane. For example, I may spend one hour organizing my shop, one hour reading something informative, one hour doing outreach, and another hour on social media planning. It keeps my mind active instead of being focused on the same task for a long period of time which may cause me to grow bored.
  • What are your future business plans? I’m working on creating a Sanctuary Girl business planner tailored to CEO’s who have a strong faith focus for their business. I’m working on launching the 2019 Sanctuary Girl retreat schedule. I also have planned some exciting new twists for the Sanctuary Girl Faith Planner. Stay tuned.
  • What are your best resources when you look for information to help you with supporting your business? I like to tap into professional human resources, people who specialize in and are knowledgeable about things/topics that I don’t know about. I look to them to fill in the gap of things I need. Human resources are so necessary.
  • What do you do to “get away” from it all? Immerse myself in British dramas.  If I can’t go to the beach, I find some mid-century British shows or movies on Netflix to watch like a great Jane Austin movie. Once I find a good series or movie, I am done. I can spend all day watching.
  • What was one of your biggest mistakes and how did you overcome it? Taking on everything for myself; I am self-sufficient and have to have control. I’ve learned that you have to have a well-structured team and must be willing to delegate and let go. Otherwise, you will run yourself ragged. For example, I’ve come to the realization that I have to give up some control on the Sanctuary Girl Retreat details, planning everything and doing everything. I’ve got to let go and let others do. After getting advice from one of the women in my tribe, I am currently working on building a retreat team. Where do I need the most help? Which women can I place in charge of administrative details such as registration? Who would be good for  planning the kitchen and meal details? And if I find really trustworthy women, having them lead a session while I take a break. Taking this advice will make your life so much easier. You can’t do it all.
  • What is a piece of one-word advice you want to leave for the ladies, one word that needs no explanation but can serve to motivate or encourage other women, one word they can look at and act upon ? FEARLESS

Defining Moments

This past Friday I had the honor and the pleasure of attending an induction ceremony and tea for a girls organization that I had the privilege to help start as well as advise when I was a teacher at my previous school. The organization, P.I.N.K. (Positive Influence Nurtures Knowledge), was originally created by a wise and beautiful woman at a local elementary school, and one of her old members begged my friend to start a chapter at our middle school a few years ago. I heard about the idea and jumped right on board, and the rest is history. Being an adviser for P.I.N.K. was one of the most rewarding things that I have done in my adult life (kind of like parenting but to 30-40 young ladies at one time).

This year we were inducting 20 new members, and I was so excited to be on the other side of the table, not the one putting everything together, but as a speaker on a panel coming to encourage and impart wisdom to the new and old members.  I didn’t plan a speech or anything of that sort because I knew that once the conversations at these events start, they just keep rolling seamlessly.

We had gotten to our Q&A session of the tea when one of the young ladies, after hearing stories of the challenges and hard times that we had all overcome, asked a very thought provoking question. She asked  “In order to grow in life will there have to be more bad times than good?”  Apparently in conveying our stories, we had given her the impression that in order to it make to where we were as guest panelists and successful women, that life would have to be more hard than easy, more bad than good. Two other presenters spoke up before I could, and because we were running short on time, I didn’t have the chance to respond. But here is what I wanted her to know. Maybe she’ll get the chance to read this some day.

No, there will not be more hard times than easy and more bad than good. It’s really all about your perspective of and approach to life each and every day. When I look back over my life, I can definitely point out more happy than sad days, more laughter and smiles than tears, more peaceful moments than those spent in pain.

The bad days or hard times cannot be avoided and yes, they do help us to grow. It’s all in our responses to these moments that can make all the difference in our lives. 

We can grow from “good” moments as well. For example, if something that you’ve tried to do turns out positively, you’ll repeat the process to continue to get good results. You will learn through that process. You will grow.

However, the moments that seem to have the biggest impacts are those hard times or what I will call the defining moments of our lives. I believe that the reason most of us point these moments out when giving wisdom to others, the reason why they stick out in our minds the most, is because they are the moments that change us the most, the moments that truly make us who God created us to be.

These defining moments stick out because we are usually in a make or break situation where the decision we make or the lesson we learn will have a lasting impact on our lives. 

They can be the beginning of a chapter of our lives that will lead us to success or even the ending to one that will take us away from negative things such as a toxic relationship.

The reason we are so eager to share these stories is because we don’t want you to be blindsided by them. If we came in and told you that life would be all unicorns and rainbows, you’d be mad at us when it didn’t turn out that way.

Defining moments often come as a surprise. They interrupt your normal life. They may even knock you off your feet. But I dare you to do this. I dare you to welcome these moments and use them for the learning experiences that they are meant to be. Let them be temporary interruptions and not how your story ends. That way you can add words such as courageous, strong, bold, wise, indomitable to your list of words you use to describe yourself.

We want you to be prepared and understand and remember that this too shall pass. That you will come out on the other side of this stronger than you’d ever thought you would be and that one day, you will be standing in front of a room of young ladies, or on the phone with one, or holding your own daughter’s hand as you tell your story of overcoming adversity, so that she will understand that the strong, beautiful, positive, successful woman that she knows wasn’t created overnight.

But she also wasn’t defeated by the storms of life. If anything, she always found a way to come out on top. That is our humble prayer for you and why we are here today. So that you may always come out on top. 

 

 

 

 

 

…So Plan Accordingly

We all live pretty hectic lives, but I feel women are especially focused on and stressed by all of the day-to-day tasks that need to be accomplished. Whether we are wives or mothers or single ladies or career women, we all attempt to have it “all together.” In the midst of this, many things get overlooked, forgotten, pushed aside. Our perpetual to-do lists are constantly on our minds as we race back and forth from place to place, appointment to appointment all the while neglecting the things that are truly important to us, the things that make us feel like women, that make us happy, that give us our sanity. We struggle with how to organize it all so that all of it (or most of it) can actually get completed each day.

One way that I’ve learned to try to “get it all done” is by taking time to plan out my days, my weeks, and my months while taking time to reflect on how well they went, what I could have done better, what I need to change, and what I should continue doing. I’ve used many different planners to try to achieve this, but none of them took into account one matter that has become more and more important to me within the past few years: my faith. I know some people are wondering how a planner can help with my faith. Well, it’s my pleasure to explain.

Since I switched to my Sanctuary Girl Faith Planner, my life has changed. For a while, my relationship and time with God were separate from my daily to-do list. It was almost as if it that time was something separate from my “real” life. However, since getting my planner, my perception has changed. With this planner, I cannot write my plans for the day without noticing the columns indicating whether or not I have spent time that day journaling, reading my devotional(s), reading my Bible, and praying. If you enjoy utilizing a planner as much as I do, you’ll understand that there is a sense of satisfaction in being able to check off or cross something off your to-do list; seeing that little check mark or that line drawn through the task is (excuse the expression) a high for me. Knowing that I have checked off those four columns each day makes me feel even better than usual because I know that that represents quality time spent with God, time that sets the tone for the rest of my day, preparing me to deal with the other items on my to-do list or situations that I may have to face. That time is not something separate from the rest of my life; it’s an integral part of it. (more…)