Monday Mantra

Monday Mantra

Good morning! 🙂

I know you may not be ready for that heavy a dose of optimism this early haha, but that’s part of my point in being this sunny on a Monday. I want to help you start the week off right, in any way that I can. Starting Monday off strong can lead to a more productive and more pleasant work/school week, all it takes is a change in attitude–truly, it is that simple.

So, here are a few words that I strung together after class last week. Think on them. Meditate on them. Use them to turn “Ugh, where did the weekend go?” into “Here’s a fresh start on a new day”:

Laugh, smile.

Live, love.

Hope, dream.

Forgive, forget.

Learn, grow.

Grin, bear.

Fall, rise.

Try, do.

Cry, hug.

Hurt, heal.

Grieve, breathe.

Seek, praise.

Share, trust.

Dare, believe.

Aim, succeed.

You, me.


As promised for my “Monday Mantra” series, short and sweet! I hope the words themselves spoke volumes to you, and reach you wherever you are today, whenever you are! You are beautiful and you are loved ❤︎

Body Image

4 Reasons Why It’s Not About the Pounds Lost: Rethinking Your Resolutions

Hello there! 🙂

As some of you may have noticed, this week has been a busy one for me! I’m in the midst of my last semester at a community college before transferring to a four-year university in the Fall. Presumably, I will be transferring for Elementary Education–but that is a whole ‘nother can of worms lol.

This afternoon after school, I was snacking on oil-free popcorn (yes, you can grow to love the, how shall I put it, simpler taste; it doesn’t leave you feeling gross like buttery movie popcorn does. I can’t eat the stuff, it tears up my stomach so bad! Buuut part of that could’ve been my past tendency to binge it… Honest confessions of a former binger friends). As I sat there with my second batch–no, I did not eat enough to feed an army, but yes, I did burn the first batch because I am t-totally-TERRIBLE in the kitchen–I pondered over how, not long ago, I would have had a complete guilty complex because I ate the popcorn.

Then the guilt would’ve had me reaching for another handful of popcorn to shove those nagging thoughts away, and it would have been a binge-for-all.

And then I would have anxiously checked the scale the next morning to see how severely my snack had derailed me from my health course.

Of course, I never gained ten pounds from a bag of popcorn. But it didn’t keep me from checking each morning.

Like 90% of Americans, maybe you too decided to start a weight loss journey this New Year’s. Maybe you’ve already dumped it; maybe you’re still trudging along. Like I used to, you may constantly be checking the scale, making sure you haven’t gained an ounce.

When you see that you haven’t, it’s great! Everything is fine and dandy, and you can go about your day unscathed, having averted disaster. But if the number has gone up at all, if you’ve gained anything, you deflate like a child’s balloon, leaving you depressed and insecure the rest of the day.

I know that’s how it was for me.

In case you are still stuck in that mindset, I want to give you a couple reasons why your health journey and resolutions shouldn’t be about a number. Our confidence and sense of wholeness in self was never meant to come from a scale, but in God’s love. He loves you–yes, you reading this right now–more than you could possibly imagine. It is that love, the love of a father to his beloved child, that is meant to strengthen us.

P.S. Your weight can shift because of water retention. It’s literally always fluctuating.

Instead of some number on a scale, it is about the life gained:

  1. How you feel: As you lose any extra weight you may have, get your body moving, and eat better, you will probably notice that you are feeling better. (If you aren’t there yet–don’t quit! You’ll get there if you give it time, I promise!) You’ll have more energy, you’ll sleep better, and you’ll be less stressed. And who doesn’t need less stress?
  2. How you feel about yourself: Your body will thank you when you take care of it. You’ll be less bloated because you’re no longer consuming junk foods (which your body was never meant to handle anyway) and you’ll wake up refreshed. It’s like you’re a car that’s just been given an oil change and wash–because you’re clean on the inside, now you can operate at your personal best and run smoothly out on the highway of life.
  3. How you feel towards others: Now you’re operating at the best you that you can possibly be! From this point, you’ll find that your relationships improve. The insecurities caused by food disorders and obsessions can destroy personal relationships, whether it be with your parents, kids, spouses, or friends. Because family outings often come with fast foods or other uncontrollable circumstances, your reliance on the scale will force you to shut out those friends and family, to avoid anything you cannot control. Letting go of the scale can be step one in repairing those relationships, or even preventing future damage.
  4. How you look: Last–and least. Take a second, if you will, and notice how this was not my “Reason number one!” for why you should ditch the scale. Yeah, I’m pretty sure everybody has, at least once in their lives, wanted to see ab lines in the mirror. (Honestly, abs were the only thing I had on my mind the first three months of my fitness jourey, so trust me when I say I’ve been there too.) I used to measure my fitness success on only two things: if I could see ab lines in the mirror each morning and what the scale said. Fitness isn’t about appearance. It’s about being able to take the dog on a walk and not be miserably winded in the first five minutes. It’s about being able to keep up with the kids on the playground. It’s about living life to the fullest. However, if you do take proper care of your body–loving it each step of the way–you will see signs of physical improvement, which can be quite rewarding.

Consider each of these the next time you sit down to determine your resolution progress. Evaluate the why behind your goals.

Are you working out and eating right just to see a number drop? Or are you doing it out of a love for yourself?

Thank you very much for reading my dreamers! I hope this helps you during your own journeys. You are worth so much more than some number. You are beautiful and you are loved ❤︎

Monday Mantra

Monday Mantra

Hey guys 🙂 Welcome back dreamers, and a warm hello to all who are new!

If you read my last post, “3 Steps to Promote Productivity Today“, you’ll recall that book I mentioned (The 7 Habits of Highly Effective Teens). Within, it discusses this concept of a “mission statement”–I won’t get into it too deeply right now, but as the title suggests, it’s this concept of developing a statement for yourself.

It can be a list of goals you want to accomplish. It can be a set of your personal beliefs that you wish to uphold throughout the day–religious, moral, or otherwise. It can be a pick-me-up message for when you’re feeling low.

Whatever it is, it’s your’s! Make it into whatever you want! And once you’ve written it out, put it somewhere you’ll see it often: a memo in your phone, a note in your planner, wherever you’ll have quick and easy access to it. I’ve got mine taped up on my bedroom door. Nothing fancy, just a homemade poster colored in crayon.

But it works. And it’s powerful.

Anywho, this mission statement idea got me thinking. So, I’ve decided I might like to try a new category (if you couldn’t tell by the headline lol) called Monday Mantra. These will be short posts with the goal of optimism, both for you and for me. (Well, obviously this one isn’t as short, since it’s introducing the concept.) We all know how Mondays can either make or break a week sometimes, and I swear 90% of people dread ’em.

On the contrary, I think Mondays can be a great refresher. New day, new week; new goals, new challenges. Starting Monday off right can be the little push you need to carry you through whatever life throws at you this week.

And I’d be honored to help give you–and me–that push.

In that respect, I’d like to share with you my own mission statement, just in case you’re curious or need a little umph! of positivity when life’s tossing you down extra hard ❤︎


  • I will not complain.
  • I will ban all negativity from what I say, from what I listen to, and from what I watch.
  • I will not worry.
  • I will do more of what makes me happy.
  • I will grow in wisdom and knowledge.
  • I will promote productivity.
  • I will Be Still and Know.
  • I will have compassion for others.
  • I will love those who love me. I will love those who hate me. I will love all.
  • I will PRAY.
  • I will smile.
  • I will cry when I need to cry, fall when I need to fall, but always get back up again.
  • I will have compassion for myself.
  • I am beautiful. I am loved. I am strong. I am smart.
  • I will remember to scatter sunshine along my way.
  • I will not feed anger. I will trust and be at peace.
  • I will make every room, this room.


p.s. I gave that book to my brother… I don’t even know where it is now.

Thank you very much for reading, I wish you the best possible Monday! You are beautiful and you are loved ❤︎


Finding Purpose

3 Steps to Promote Productivity Today

Good morning bloggers! I’ve got a concept today that has been heavy on my mind lately–heavy in a good way though.

Have you ever been scrolling through your phone (for me, it was usually Instagram), to suddenly look up and not know where the past half hour went? The past hour? Even more?

I understand that things like Facebook memes and Netflix are a necessary part of some people’s relaxation routines. They’re what help you unwind and brush off the weariness of the day. Believe me, I used to do the same thing: I’d get home from school, toss my bag on the bed and plop down, phone instantly in hand to “take a break” from the hectic hustle and bustle.

But when does it go from a little relaxing to laziness?

I have finally entered an awareness of how I spend my time (in just a minute, I’ll share some tips for you to do the same), but the rest of my family is still caught in the idleness trap.

Yesterday, I was downstairs working on homework before deciding to clean. After cleaning, I did a little reading. The time continued to pass, and you want to know what my brother was doing? Scrolling through his phone. Sure, there were occasional breaks to eat–but guess where his phone was? That’s right: still in his hand. In the bedroom, on the couch, at the island, the phone was always at the ready.

At this rate, the world is going to be filled with mindless human drones by 2050.

Take a second and think about your typical day. Of course, there’s school or work, but I’m talking about outside of that. What do you usually do when you get home; how is it that you spend your spare time? Take the dog for a walk, do some yoga, read a book? Or hit the couch with the TV remote and smartphone for the next three hours?

And we wonder why there aren’t enough hours in a day.

  • I want to make it clear that I don’t bash the TV or phone, or you for enjoying them. Hey, I do too! In this post, I hope to increase your awareness of where your time is going in a given day, and if the things it’s going to are actually beneficial or not.

I’ve been reading the book The 7 Habits of Highly Effective Teens lately (actually, I just read it all the way through for the first time and am going back for seconds!). Combined with my increased Bible studies, it really opened my eyes. I don’t want to look back on my life and remember a phone screen. I don’t want to regret missed opportunities and precious moments because I was simply wasting them away doing… nothing.

And I don’t want you to either! So here are some of the things I’ve been doing to be a little more productive each day–steps that you can implement into your everyday life:


Set an alarm:

It sounds cliche, I know. And all you night-owls are probably rolling your eyes, like yeah right. But this has been the key component of my increased efficiency levels for the past year. This is going to sound crazy, just bear with me, but I get up at 5:30 every morning.

Every. Morning.

I got up at 5:30 on Christmas. I got up at 5:30 on the weekends I could’ve slept in. I get up at 5:30 each day, and it has made a world of difference in how I go about my day. By starting off with that one small commitment to myself (instead of hitting snooze for the next two hours), I’ve now opened the door to making bigger commitments and accomplishing bigger things. It is the season for setting and achieving goals after all.

I know it’s hard–and I know 5:30 is just too early for some of you (which pertains to the next step). Pick the best time, just make sure it’s still relatively “early” in the morning. It’ll take a while to adjust, but I promise it is well worth it. You’ll realize that, huh, you do have more hours in a day, you’ve just been sleeping them away.


Get enough sleep:

Have you ever seen a car rundown on the side of the road, because it ran out of gas? Its owner was too busy to remember to take proper care of it, leaving the owner stranded.

You guessed it: the car is your body. In order for you to get anything done in a day, productive or otherwise, you’ve got to be refreshed and rejuvenated enough not to break down in the middle of the day. It makes sense.

While the exact number of hours will vary from you to me (under 6 I turn into a cranky evil monster; 7-8 and I’m great), it’s best if you find the optimal amount–and stick to it! Let your family members know you’re going to bed at a certain time. That’s the only way I got mine to leave me alone long enough for me to fall asleep (I go to bed at no later than 9:30, while they stay up till 11). If you let others know, you’ll be better able to successfully stick to your self-appointed bedtime.


Lock the phone away:

Put it in a dresser drawer. Leave it upstairs for once. Banish it from your bedroom.

Whatever your chosen course of action, set a time today to get away from technology. For some of you, this may be no biggie; for others, this is like going without your daily coffee–impossible. If you normally live and breathe your phone, take 5 minutes to clear your head every hour.

Not much, just 5 minutes.

Soon, you’ll be able to turn that small 5 into 15, then 30, then an hour, until you realize there are actually other things you want to do with your time. Find a hobby you enjoy. (Since you’re reading this, I’ll suggest blogging! Though, that may not help with getting away from technology… oops.) Hand-write a story. Draw a puppy. Go for a walk. It doesn’t matter what it is, it only matters that you’ve taken the time away from your phone. It really is freeing when you see that you don’t need to be on it every second.

Wait for that moment. It’s well worth it.

Alright my dreamers, that’s all I’ll touch on for today–but I could talk so much more about the joys of being productive! The feeling of accomplishment that comes with more efficient use of time is indescribable, and I hope you get to feel it too. Thank you for reading! You are beautiful and you are loved ❤︎

Finding Purpose

Why You Shouldn’t Share All Your Resolutions

Hey there 🙂

Welcome back to my blog faithful followers, or hello for the first time to any newcomers! I hope you decide to stay and chat awhile with me. Today, we’re talking about, you guessed it, resolutions.


By now, you might be a little sick of the word (don’t worry, I am too–I actually don’t believe in the whole resolution thing, but that’s another story). Whether you wrote them off a week ago, banned them from your life, or are still strictly sticking to ’em, resolutions are pretty much everywhere right now.

Your’s may be a health journey, mentally or physically–or both. It might be a promise to quit an addiction. A vow to your significant other. Goals for your blog. Whatever it may be, it is a resolution or goal that you’ve set for you.

That’s right. For you.

Which is why I want to caution you against sharing your goals with just anyone and everyone.

In a lot of cases, accountability is a great thing. Going to the gym, for instance, is a whole lot easier and more enjoyable when you’re implementing the buddy system.

But when your resolution, your goal, is just a wee itty bitty baby, not even taking its first steps yet, sharing it with the world could actually damage it.


Just today, when I got home from school, I made the mistake of sharing a new character idea for a book I’m writing with my brother. I ignored that teeny voice in my head that was warning me not to, because I was so desparate for someone else’s affirmation. Here’s what was wrong with sharing this part of my goal (i.e. writing a book):

  • Yes, I have mentioned to both family and friends (and on here with you guys) that I one day want to write a book. Though I have been very vague on here, I’ve been sharing with my immediate family the details of this book. I don’t know about you, but my family is very critical. And when these ideas for my story are precious newborns, if I rely on my family’s approval to determine whether they live or die, it is so detrimental. The problem is that I am seeking other’s justification for what I am doing for myself. My goal is for me–just like your goal is for you, no one else. It’s tempting in the beginning to share, I know. It is so hard not to spread your enthusiasm with every ear in listening range. And that’s a good feeling! I’m glad you’re excited–as well you should be 🙂 But protect that excitement from the cold of the outside. Don’t let your newborn baby freeze to death before it can even crawl.

You will face opposition. You will face judgements. People will ask why in the world you want to do that, they’ll rub their noses at you and tell you it’s no good, it’ll never work out.

That’s what my brother did.

Against all better judgement, I presented this newborn character idea to him–nonchalantly on the outside, like I didn’t care what he thought, though I was, of course, begging him to like it on the inside. Like any wonderful, loving younger brother, his answer was “Cool! You’ve got this sis!”



No, like any real brother the first word’s out of Danny’s mouth were: “You know how hard it’s gonna be to get them to publish you right?” (I’d told him the specific publisher I have in mind. Another mistake, obviously.)


That one question, paired with his bad attitude, came this close to squashing my poor baby into oblivion. All because I was sharing what I shouldn’t have been.

Until you have grown the maturity to back up your resolution or goal, don’t share it with everybody. Maybe don’t even share it with your family–maybe especially don’t share it with your family. If you’re going to share it, only share with a select few people you trust to both give you honest feedback and kind encouragement:

  • You see, constructive criticism can be a beautiful thing for a goal–it can transform an inkling into action, a newborn into an infant. The right criticism can open your eyes to some of the mistakes you may be making. But because the criticism is coming from the right person/people, it builds you up where others might tear you down.

Right now, I don’t really have anyone to share my manuscript with. Not anyone who would build me up, anyway. While I’ve got–and you’ve got–a Father who delights in every single one of our dreams and cheers at every baby step we take, for now I can’t share my goals with anyone else. You may not have anyone else either.

And that’s okay. Sometimes it’s better to let our goals grow bigger and stronger before we let them walk on their own. If not sharing your resolutions means you won’t be at risk of letting somebody else destroy them, then it’s not a bad thing to keep them to yourself. It’s actually a beneficial thing–it’s not their goal anyway, they shouldn’t get to tear it down!

I do believe in the power of friendship and community, even if it didn’t sound like it I promise lol. And because of that, I am asking for a little help. (Which is taking more guts than it probably should.) The book I’m writing is geared towards young adult girls, like 12+, but I don’t have anyone that age around me to read and contstructively criticize. What are your suggestions? Anywho, thank you all so much for reading! You are beautiful and you are loved ❤︎

Body Image

5 Tips to Combat Overeating

You did it again.

You’re sitting, staring at an empty bag of chips. An empty tub of ice cream. An empty pie plate.

You don’t know how it happened again, but it did. Now, all you know is the guilt sitting as heavy in your stomach as the frozen lump of mint chocolate chip.

I’ve been there too. For me, it was triggered by a cranky sweet tooth and a severe case of boredom.

First, I’d have a bite of the chocolate bar in the fridge. One bite would turn into half the King size bar. Second, it’d be a couple chips to combat the sickly sweet with some salt. Then, next thing I know I’ve eaten half the family size bag, some crackers, and a handful of pretzels. And I don’t even remember what most of it tasted like. After the flavor faded, it became purely mouth feel, eating to fill the void.

Do you want to stop the vicious cycle? Do you want a healthier relationship with food?

I know I did, every time I found myself staring at the decimated remains of my binge–which was, naturally, followed by forbidding myself from eating anything else the rest of the day. But if you’ve been there, you know it’s not as easy as simply stopping.

It’s taken me a year to develop a healthy relationship with the food I put it my body. A long, long year of so many trials and a much larger number of errors that I can’t possibly name them all. And because I know people just like that me, people like you right now, suffer that same cycle of eating-and-punishing, I want to give you some tips I’ve learned to combat overeating:

(As always my friends, I am not a professional, certified health expert or dietition. These are just my own opinions and things that have worked for me–and will hopefully work for you.)

Out of sight, out of mind:

This was, and still is, the most essential to me. If you get home from work and there’s a box of cookies right there on the counter, how much more likely are you to just grab a cookie… and then two… and then three, before you dig into the fridge for something healthy? Yeah, that’s what I thought.

Make your home a safe zone. There are enough temptations on your way to school/work, at school/work, and then on the way back home again that you shouldn’t have to also fight them at home. During a moment of sheer willpower, toss out all the chips and cookies and crap that’s sitting around. If it’s not there, you won’t be able to eat and then binge on it now will you?

Don’t wait until you’re starving:

Your stomach’s announcing the mating call of a humpback whale. The TV is blaring doughnut ads. Your coworker is chowing down on Domino’s. Then, he offers you half.

What do you do?

See, when you’re hungry, those brave resolutions you made somehow magically vanish. Poof! Your self-control weakens to a point of nonexistence. This is the thing that can still get me today if I’m not careful. Therefore, I don’t go more than two hours between meals. For some of you, this might sound crazy–and for you, it might be. I eat a bunch of smaller meals throughout the day, but you may need the routine of a standard “three meals a day”. Find what works for you. Just let it be what keeps you satisfied enough between meals that you can, even reluctantly, say no to that sprinkle-covered confection.

Change of scenery:

You know the spot. In my case, it’s the end seat at the kitchen island. This spot is where every single one of my binges have occured–and can still occur, if I’m not careful. Maybe it’s your sofa, your bed, or your dining room chair; wherever the spot, pinpoint where you tend to be when you fall prey to your unhealthy eating habits.

Now, you know the spot. Next, walk away from it. Leave the binges there. Leave the cycle there.

Find a different spot. I merely moved one seat to the left at the island. Sounds silly, right? But it works. You see, you play with your brain when you eat in a different location. You’re no longer at the “scene of the crime” anymore, and if you don’t repeat the bad habit you started out with, your brain won’t know to send the message to mindlessly stuff your face with Doritos. It sounds so small, but try it. You’ll see the difference it makes.

Take a breath:

One of my dad’s most common statements throughout all of my childhood was “Breath Jordan! Taste your food.”

I wish I had listened sooner.

I don’t know if it was because I didn’t want my food to go cold, I don’t know if I constantly had something else I wanted to do after my meal, I don’t know why, but for some reason I have a horrible tendency to shovel food in without thought. This is something I’ve only very recently begun to battle. However, the importance of chewing more and pausing for breath is highly significant.

When we’re just shoveling food in mindlessly, we’re not truly paying attention to what we’re putting in our bodies. Food is fuel. A bag of Lays honey-barbeque is not going to nourish you or energize you for the day. But if you sit down on the couch, TV on, one hand scrolling through Instagram and one hand immersed in a chips bag, you’re not going to think about it. You’re going to grab, chew, repeat.

The purposeful mentality you’re attempting to cultivate is so much deeper and I won’t go into detail here, but it all starts with a breath. Take five seconds–that’s it, five seconds.

1… 2… 3… 4… 5.

Stop and actually think about what you’re eating. Think about if you want to continue down that awful binge or starvation spiral.

“Put the spork down”:

Rio 2 had it right here.

You can even time it with your breaths–every time you take a breath, set your spoon/fork down. Or vice versa. Whichever. The point is to disengage your fingers from the utensil. This goes right along with purposefulness, mindfulness, and taking breaths.

Meals were never meant to be mindless snacking. Filling the void. Repairing a broken heart. These are all holes in our lives Jesus wants to fill with his love ❤︎  These are not holes meant to be filled with food, but somehow, that’s what happens. I am just as guilty of it as you. I’m going to do it again, I’m going to mess up–and so are you. Sure, you can look up all the “Quick Fix”‘s you want, try all the diets, and buy all the fitness programs. But until you make the choice for yourself to eat healthier and love your body, none of it will work.

It’s not a quick fix. Mistakes are as much a part of the process as the workouts and the healthy eating. Heck, they might even be more important, because that’s how we learn. You will fall. It won’t be easy.

But it will be worth it.

Let me know if any of these tips helped you! Health journeys are hard, and all the diet fads choking us on social media today aren’t helping. You’ve got this though; I believe in you! You are beautiful and you are loved ❤︎


Battling Depression

8 Promises for Your Suffering Today

  1. Blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.
  2. Blessed are they who mourn, for they will be comforted.
  3. Blessed are the meek, for they will inherit the land.
  4. Blessed are they who hunger and thirst for righteousness, for they will be satisfied.
  5. Blessed are the merciful, for they will be shown mercy.
  6. Blessed are the clean of heart, for they will see God.
  7. Blessed are the peacemakers, for they will be called children of God.
  8. Blessed are they who are persecuted for the sake of righteousness, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.


Hey there!

So, as some of you may have noticed, this week has been a busy one for me! It was the first week back to school–new classes, adjusting schedules, handling our mini-farm, new people; pretty much sums up the transition into a New Year, don’t you think? We enter January with this bubbling, “Get it done!” attitude–which makes it so much harder when things go downhill.

As most of us know, the post-Christmas season is the most depressed season of the year (“It’s the sad, saddest season, of allllll”). Winter blues combined with a dose of debt does not a happy you make (what is that phrase from anyway? do any of you know?). So, when we’re already stressing about money and bills and wondering how things could possibly get worse…

You guessed it. They somehow do.

Even if you’re one of the few who are feeling fine and things are going great, I know you have still suffered at some point in your life–whether you’re 13 years old or 73 years old. And no doubt you’ll suffer again (sorry, I didn’t mean for that to sound as gloom and doom as it did, I just mean that we all know life ain’t easy).

For those of you not feeling so fine, I am right there with you. My parents are fighting–either yelling or not talking, with me as mediator–, my brother just went through a “mutual” breakup with the girl I honestly could’ve seen him marrying (which means, surprise! he’s extra moody with me), and the control freak in me makes me think it’s all my fault and I’m the one who has to fix it all.

Sure, your problems may be more severe than mine; mine may be more severe than your’s. Regardless, we all hurt. We all suffer.

But we are never suffering alone.

You may not believe in God the way I do, and I won’t try convincing you on whether he exists or not today. That’s ultimately up to you to decide to put your faith in him or not, so I won’t push. But since you’ve made it this far, I’d like to expand on a few of those eight promises (otherwise known as the “Beatitudes”) I listed at the beginning and for you to hear me out–just for a little while. All I ask is for your attentive eye, lest I bring you a small amount of comfort in your hardship today.

I’d like to specifically highlight the two that spoke out most to me, in my personal pain:

“Blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.”

“Poor in spirit.” Worn down. Broken. Tired. Hurting. Does that sound a lot like how you’re feeling, even right now as you read? Yeah? Me too. I can’t give you an explanation to why you’re suffering–I can’t even give the reason for my suffering, because I just don’t know it all. But I can give you the words of Jesus. Jesus promises one day, those of who are hurting will have eternal rest in heaven, peace with him, if we but only ask him into our hearts. Even more, we can receive that peace right here, right now, if we let him in–whether you’re sitting in your office chair, laying on the couch, sitting on a bus, or in the school library.

Yes, the things in your life will still hurt; he never promised life would be easy, and boy do we know it’s not. But if we focus on the blessings amidst the struggle, just one at a time, slowly we can build up an inner peace that no earthly trial can tear down. Think of your daughter’s smile. Your dog’s wet kisses. The coworker who held the door open this morning. That stranger’s smile. While the bruises from life’s punches are still very real and very there, they can be gently bandaged, one bandaid at a time, when you start to say a thank you to God for the little things.

“Blessed are they who mourn, for they will be comforted.”

“Mourn.” Weeping over a lost loved one. Broken-hearted after a really bad breakup. The situations are endless, but the word “mourn” speaks heavily and clearly across them all. To mourn is to reach a state of sorrow wherein it feels like there’s no hope left, there’s no happily ever after. When we’re mourning, we’re reminded that we aren’t guaranteed a tomorrow, a happily ever after here on earth–on earth. There is, however, the hope of eternity in heaven, a happily forever and ever in the arms of a father who cares so, so much about you. Yes, little ol’ you. Hurting you. Broken you. Angry you. Mourning you. He looked at this great big world with grand canyons and breath-taking mountains and roaming hills and decided it needed one of you too. Because he loves you. Rest in that love. Be comforted by his love.

And in case you’re wondering, no, I have certainly not perfected this practice myself–nowhere close! I had a point yesterday where all of life’s punches seemed to come into mind at once, and bam! suddenly I was crying–really crying, you know the sobbing, breath-hitching, uncontrollable kind that seems to pause for a moment and then starts back up again full force. In these moments, I imagine God with wings–yeah, yeah, I know, it sounds a little weird, but hear me out: I like to imagine God with these HUGE wings, bigger than any birds you can think of, that can wrap all the way around me with room to spare. For me, it’s the perfect visualization of God’s comfort when I’m hurting: he is not only holding me in his wings, close and warm and loved, he is also blocking out the pain from outside–all the negativity and despair and depression and cold. And when I’ve finally stopped crying, I can smile a little (even with the tear stains, running nose, and red face), knowing that the pain brought me closer to him.

That may just sound like I’m messed up in the head and all sorts of whacko to you, I dunno. Wings may not be your thing, but they sure work for me–and if it helps you, I knew it was worth sharing, even at risk of sounding crazy lol. I do hope this brought even the smallest measure of peace to you today, in your pain, even if it’s just in knowing you’re not alone.

“So be truly glad. There is wonderful joy ahead. Even though you have to endure many trials for a little while.”

1 Peter 1:6

You are beautiful and you are loved ❤︎