Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Love Is a Journey

Dear Readers,

I am so sorry. I truly wanted to squeeze a post or two before today, but sickness and no internet stopped me. Wow this is the last day of February! When one  starts something you have to finish it, right? So I guess you could call this a goodbye post:)
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We've talked about what love is, isn't, what it does, God's love, and loving others. Love is so much more complex and goes way deeper than anything I have written this past month. There is no set formula for love. Love is a thing to experience anew everyday. 

Love is a journey. There will be bumps in the road. Twists and turns. We may have to make some u-turns to get back on the love road. It is a long journey, one which you may constantly ask yourself, "Am I their yet?"

We are not perfect, but love is. Jesus is Love. So with the love and grace from Jesus we will walk in love towards one another and continue on this journey.

"Let us not become weary in doing good, for at the proper time we will reap a harvest if we do not give up."
Galatians 6:9

So ladies I hope to leave you with something to think and act upon. I pray that each of you may walk in complete love. When you love God above all else, your love for others will fall into place. What more can I say Live In Love!

"Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind and with all your strength." Mark 12:30


P.S. I hope to post about my giveaway/ remembrance gift soon, so stay tuned.

Friday, February 24, 2012

A Lovely Future

The Wedding
You're invited to my wedding
I'm going to be a bride
God made this match in heaven
When He laid my sins aside

The groom I'll have is perfect
He led a sinless life
Then gave himself to save my soul
So I could be His wife

The wedding feast will be quite grand
I hope that you'll be there
He gave His life for your soul too
It's a brideship we can share

My wedding lamp is filled with oil
For the groom I long to see
He'll soon be coming in a cloud
In all His majesty

Patiently I wait for Him
In hopes He'll soon return
Hoping all the world gets saved
And no one has to burn

There is a job been given me
While I await the groom
I must tell this sinful world
He's risen from His tomb

He'll be coming back one day
He'll come to take His bride
And those who have refused His love
Will have no place to hide

Those of us who live for Him
In whom He does abide
Shall all be at the wedding feast
For we shall be His bride

Because the bridegroom's perfect
And I've been born again
We'll soon be on our honeymoon
And it shall never end.

Author Unknown

Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Love Triumphs- Guest Post

One of the things I love about blogging is "meeting" new people. You get to establish new friendships with people you have never met and that are from different places. I decided to do something different for the Love Challenge and have invited Aimee, to do a guest post on how love triumphs. I really enjoy reading her blog which is written with a passion and love for the Lord that is so beautiful.  Be sure to head on over to read more of her writing over at her blog All Filled Up.  

Without further ado Aimee shares:

This is the story of how love saved my life.

When I was five years old, my dad divorced my mom. Everything changed in one day. My mom brought my siblings and I to live with my grandparents across the country until we could find a house nearby. Although I didn’t really understand all that was happening, it started to become clear when my dad mailed me a small snapshot of him and his new wife just after they were married by the Justice of the Peace. I stared at that picture for hours. Why would my daddy want to leave my family for another one?

During elementary and middle school, I especially struggled with not having a father involved in my life. My wonderful church was filled with complete families: a father, a mother, and usually three or four kids. Why couldn’t I be like them? It seemed so un-complicated. They didn’t have to worry about handling step-families, chaotic visitation schedules, and all the challenging emotions that come with divorce. Besides all that, I missed my dad.

But one morning, God came into my life in a new way. I got up in the morning and went to have my quiet time like I did every morning. Today’s assigned passage was in 2 Corinthians. It said, “and I will be a father to you, and you shall be sons and daughters to me, says the Lord Almighty” (2 Corinthians 6:18). Did it really say that? I re-read it. Yes, it said that God is my Father. He made me his daughter! I am not fatherless after all! He took over the role that my earthly dad forsook.

Ever since then, I live differently. I used to live like my family was incomplete. Now I live in light of the fact that my Father is the king of the universe! I live for Him, because He sacrificed his life just to adopt me. That is how God’s love saved my life. His love broke through all the odds and rescued me from my despair. What Satan meant for evil, God’s love made better than it was before.

Your parents might not be divorced like mine, but God still wants to be your Father. He loves you more than anyone – more than your friends, more than a boyfriend, more than you yourself do! He will never let you go. Today ask him to reveal himself to you in a new way. Ask him to show his Fatherhood to you.

Once again thanks to Aimee for guest posting.  Wow!  That is the God we serve...another reminder that love never fails.  Love triumphs!

Monday, February 20, 2012

Love Who You Are

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Warning do not read this! Until you go and look at yourself in the mirror (then come back and finish reading.) What do you see? Someone beautiful? Or just plain Jane?

As girls, we have the tendency to never be truly satisfied with ourselves. What we have is not good enough. She has bangs well I need them too. I'm too fat. I'm not that pretty. The list can go on... 

I honestly believe that the Lord created us in a very unique way. The Lord made us so detailed that we actually have to take time to prepare ourselves in the morning. We can not go outside without looking at the mirror to see if we look presentable. So even if you try to avoid looking at yourself, guess what, God made that impossible:)

I praise the Lord that no one looks like me and I do not look like them (except my mom.) Try to imagine a world only filled with brown wavy haired brown eyed girls. That would get very boring. 

"So God created man in his own image, in the image of God he created him: male and female he created him. Genesis." 1:27

The word create is used 3 times in this passage, so we know it is important. One meaning of create is to produce through artistic or imaginative effort. So we were not thrown together. God did not make a mistake when he made you. God took time and dedication to making you unique and beautiful just the way only you can be.

"Before I formed you in the womb I knew you, before you were born I set you apart; I appointed you a prophet to the nations." Jeremiah 1:5

How beautiful to know that God knew us before we were ever born. He knew me, Alicia. He knows my mistakes, my joys and sorrows. He has set me apart from all the other brown eyed girls. He knows who His little Ali is. He made me just the way I am for His glory and purpose. The same way He knows me He knows you too. You are beautifully His.

Challenge: First, grab a piece of paper and write out Jeremiah 1:5, but instead of the "you's" fill your name in. Then, read it over to yourself. I would also advise you to make a list about yourself with the following captions and then fill them in: Strengths, Weaknesses, Likes, and Dislikes. I found this list to be an encouragement to my life. It allows YOU to see YOU in a completely different light.

Friday, February 17, 2012

Smile Jesus Loves You

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Smile Jesus loves you is a very popular saying. We see it on shirts, stickers, magnets, Bible covers, and lots of other places. We are all familiar with the saying, but do we live it? It is easier to quote this than live it.

"In the same way, let your light shine before men, that they may see your good deeds and praise  your Father in heaven." Matthew 5:16

We as Christians, have the opportunity to share the love of Jesus with those we meet. Many times we  think that shinning your light means evangelizing, winning souls for Jesus. In part it does mean that. We should share the Gospel with the lost, tell them that Jesus loves them and died on the cross for their sins to reconcile them to God. 

Jesus answered," I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me."
John 14:6

As I previously stated, there is a great importance in preaching to the lost, but not all will be saved through your preaching. I believe the other part of letting your light shine talks about your testimony. The way you act tells a lot about who you are. If you are rude and demanding at the store, the clerk can not see Jesus through you. However, if we are kind, patient, loving, and gentle others can easily see Jesus in us. 

Being rude has a lot to do with pride. We want to prove that we are right at all costs. According to 1 Corinthians 13 we know that love is not proud.

Humble yourselves, therefore, under God's mighty hand, that he may lift you up in due time. 1 Peter 5:6

Challenge: Purpose to walk in humbleness towards others. Being patient with their mistakes, and forgiving with their faults so they may see Jesus in you. Smile and tell someone Jesus loves them. 

Wednesday, February 15, 2012

True Love Waits

It was my sincere desire to have finished this post yesterday, it being Valentine's Day, the day where the world celebrates love.
In our era, waiting for true love is a joke. Everyone has a boyfriend or girlfriend. The youth throw themselves at each other, not caring for the after affects.

"Now flee from youthful lusts and pursue righteousness, faith, love and peace, with those who call on the Lord from a pure heart." 2 Timothy 2:22
The youth today are not fleeing from their lusts, they are giving into them. We have to be set apart, and set an example to others. It is a joy to be completely pure for your future spouse. To save your first kiss, hug, and even an I Love You is a great victory. Without the Lord's help we can do nothing.

Of course we live in a world were there are guys and temptations. We see them at church, in our neighborhood, and basically every where.

Treat younger men as brothers, older women as mothers, and younger women as sisters, with absolute purity. 1 Timothy 5:1, 2

How can we, according to 1 Timothy treat men like brothers? What do we have to do to be treated as sisters with absolute purity. Towards men, we should treat them with respect. To be respected you have respect others. Many times girls are disrespected because they do not set boundaries with their male accuantices. So you should never be overly friendly. You should always know your place, and never take or allow liberties. Following these rules makes it all the more easier to remain pure in thoughts and in actions.

"She was a richly ornamented robe, for this was the kind of garment the virgin daughters of the king wore." 2 Samuel 13:18b 

We see that Tamar, David's daughter was dressed differently because she was a virgin. As daughters of the King of Kings, we are to distinguish ourselves among others. We can not act like all the rowdy girls, dress like loose women, and participate in their sinful practices. By following these principles we do not become a stumbling block to others, and we can live pure lives before God.

I have noticed that purity rings have become more and more popular.

*A purity ring is a ring that symbolizes someone's commitment to God and to themselves to stay pure until they get married.- source

*A purity ring is the symbol of a commitment between one person, male or female, and God, or another person. That commitment being to maintain the purity of mind and body until they take the vows of marriage.- source

I do not have one, but hope to get one when I turn 15, this upcoming birthday. Daddy I hope your reading this:) I know you do not need a reminder to eat or sleep, but I think this is more of a testimony to others. It shows the youth that yes, with God's help we are  choosing to wait.

Challenge: What more can I say then... Choose To Wait! I thought this would be a cute thing to do, go "window" shopping and choose the type of ring you would love to have.

Monday, February 13, 2012

Biblical Romances

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As young women, we can sometimes dream about our future husbands, weddings, and our future love stories. All the dreaming we do can not make it a reality. How wonderful to know that God, the Creator of romance, has already written each of our love stories. None of them are the same, each is different and unique. Many times, throughout the Bible, we see the romantic side of our Lord. Only God could be so creative to make them each unique and special.  

Adam and Eve: They were the first couple ever. I could just picture Adam longing for someone to accompany him, then God giving him Eve. Imagine his first thoughts when he saw Eve. What could Eve been thinking when she first laid eyes on Adam? (It's not like she had any one to compare him to.)

Abraham and Sara: The fact that Sara followed Abraham without question shows her deep love and trust in her husband. Sara demonstrates her love for her husband by wanting to give him a son.  Abraham loved Sara by not taking another wife, even though she was barren.

Isaac and Rebekah: This was a couple that the Lord brought together, from different places. After the death of Isaac's mother, the Bible says that Rebekah was a comfort to him. The Bible states clearly that Isaac loved Rebekah. When Rebekah was barren, the Bible says that Isaac prayed for her, and the Lord opened her womb.

Jacob and Rachel: We could probably say that this couple had a case of love at first sight.  Jacob loved Rachel so much that he was willing to work for her for 7 years, but to him it was but a short time. 

Boaz and Ruth: I personally believe that this is the most romantic story of the Bible, besides God's love for us. Ruth a foreigner, meets a man named Boaz who treats her kindly. Through that kindness they eventually get married. This is a story with a lovely woman and a dashing hero. It is the ideal love story.

David and Michal: Before they were married, Saul finds out that his daughter, Michal is in love with David. We can not fault the girl, the Bible says David was ruddy and handsome. Then when Saul wanted to kill David, Michal warned him and saved his life.

Solomon and the Shulamite: This is a very profound book. Through the descriptions they give each other, we can see their deep affection for one another. 

"I am my lover's and my lover is mine." Songs of Solomon 6:3

Hosea and Gomer: The fact that Hosea married Gomer knowing that she was a prostitute shows his deep and sacrificial love. After he marries her, she turns back to her wicked ways. Later, Hosea goes and redeems her, thus showing such unconditional love towards her.

So ladies, we can plainly see that God is romantic. Of course, these are not all. If it is his will for us to marry, He will write our love story. In fact, he already has your love story written down. All we have to do is walk according to his perfect will.

Saturday, February 11, 2012

Book Review- Heart of Gold

Although in the midst of the Civil War, Shannon, a true southern belle at heart, knows what sacrifice means. Since the Civil War broke out, her life has been filled with hardships and daily sacrifices. Shannon spends her days nursing  wounded Confederate soldiers. When her father feels called from the Lord to pastor a church in Grand Coeur, Idaho, she feels that leaving her Virginian home is too much of a sacrifice.

Matthew Dubois is the best stagecoach driver for the Wells Fargo Company. He leaves his job temporarily for the sake of his dying, widowed sister and son. As  his time spent with his family increases, he becomes more attached to his new family. While his sister weakens, he comes to the realization that he is about to inherit her son, and his dreams of returning to stagecoach driving are dashed. His only solution may be, to find a wife who will care for the boy.

Despite her initial reluctance to move with her father to Idaho, Shannon ends up leaving with her father. She is determined to change her father's mind about staying. Everything is not up to par compared to her lovely Virginian home. The people are unrefined and the landscape is so rugged. Shannon is definitely out of her comfort zone.

When Matthew and Shannon's paths cross, they are quick to judge one another. Shannon knows Matthew is not a gentlemen. She wants nothing to do with the likes of him. Matthew thinks Shannon is spoiled and thinks her self better than everyone else. However, he thinks she will make a "pretty" good wife.

To be of use, Shannon starts nursing a dying woman, who lost her Union soldier husband. Shannon, a staunch Confederate, wants nothing to do with a Union sympathizer. Alice feels that Shannon is the best choice for a wife for her brother, so she sets out to play matchmaker. As time progresses, Shannon becomes more open and friendly with Alice and her family.

Is it the Lord's plan to unite this very different couple? Will they see one another through the Lord's eyes or each others'? Or will an misunderstanding separate them forever?

The Heart of Gold was a very enjoyable read. Many of the scenes were predictable, but the journey to the end was enjoyable. This book was slow paced, however, it was not boring. I personally found this book to be a very pleasant and inspiring. I enjoyed the fact that the author continuously used the Bible throughout the story. The characters were easy to picture with their many real life emotions and flaws. There was an instant love for the characters, even when some of their bad characteristics came out. This book had just the right amount of romance, suspense, and action to make this book a worthwhile story.

I would recommend this book to all those who want a comfortable read, and not something overly dramatic and action filled. You can purchase this book at CBD or Amazon.

I received this book for free, from BookSneeze, in exchange for my honest opinion.

Thursday, February 09, 2012

Love Challenge... Update.

So this is day 9 of of the Love Challenge. This has been a soul searching challenge. I hope it has been a blessing in your lives as it has been to me. So far I've learned that I need more help in demonstrating God's perfect love. What about you? 

I have done the first challenge, Sisterhood. I did not get any pictures of my little sister doing my hair because the camera died. I got some pictures of the hairstyle I did for my little sister (These are on my I touch.)

I have completed the Patience journal challenge. Like I stated before I'm not very patient:(
I shared how much I love and appreciate my BFF here.
I have not written my love letter yet, but will work on it.

Since I am so loving, I have decided to host a giveaway. It is more like a remembrance present for those who have participated in this Love Challenge. I will post more about it when the time comes, so stay tuned ladies.

February Bible Memory Verse

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"Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. It is not rude, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no records of wrongs. Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres. Love never fails."
1 Corinthians 13: 4-8

Wednesday, February 08, 2012

Love Letters

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Many times throughout history, we see that letters were written as the means of communication. The Apostle Paul wrote many letters to different churches and people as well. 

Writing letters had many benefits back then. First, it helped people with their writing skills. People had to communicate very effectively  what they saw and felt through a letter. It also helped in your penmanship skills. Letters kept families and friends together. 

Writing letters is so last century, right? Why write a letter and waste money on postage, when you could just send a free email?

When you send a letter to someone it is more meaningful. It shows you took out of your time to do something out of the ordinary just for them. (Do not get me wrong, there is nothing wrong with emails:) 

Since this is a Love Challenge, I will focus on writing love letters.

"A Love Letter is a romantic way to express feelings of love in written form"... "the letter may be anything from a short and simple message of love to a lengthy explanation of feelings."-Source

First of all, when writing this type a letter it is for friends only(or close family members)! At our age, it is very inappropriate to write love letters to boys. You can however, write to your future spouse. I have never done this, but think this is such a cute and romantic thing to do. Then when you are older, you can show him your prayers for him and thoughts about him.

Love letters are meant to encourage and uplift your fellow friend. To share the love of Jesus with them in a personal and intimate way.

"...but let us encourage one another --and all the more as you see the Day approaching."
Hebrews 10:25b

Challenge: Now, since we all know how antiquated letter writing has become, I encourage you to write a Love Letter to someone. Write the letter expressing your love towards the person. It could be your mother, sister, friend, or even God. This is a way to share an intimate moment with that person, sharing your thoughts and emotions with them.

Monday, February 06, 2012

Book Review- Promise Me This

Annie is a bitter young girl. She has endured the death of both parents, been subjected to the cruel treatment of her aunt, and the sudden death of her brother. To her horror, she finds out that Michael survived the Titanic tragedy because of her brother's life sacrifice. She vows  to hate Michael Dunnagan for the rest of her life. 

Michael never dreamed of sailing on the Titanic, nor loosing the "brother" that had showed him love. Now bound by a promise to Owen, he travels to New Jersey to fulfill Owens dreams of a thriving garden business and to bring Annie to America. Michael tries to heal Annie's grief stricken heart through his letters.  

When Annie finally turns to God, she knows she must forgive Michael and love him,  but she knows she can't.   Their mutual love for Owen and gardening as well as  an unforeseen tragedy upon Annie's life commences a correspondence between the two.  As Annie and Michael begin cultivating their correspondence relationship, she begins to forgive him for living instead of her brother. They are both surprised at the budding friendship that has sprung forth. Can love blossom amidst their rocky beginning?

As Michael works to bring Annie to America, to fulfill the promise he made to Owen, Annie suffers in the hands of her aunt. When Michael acquires enough money,WWI erupts in Europe, and Annie's letters suddenly stop. Will Michael do the impossible to find the woman he's grown to love?

As an avid reader, stating that this book has topped all my other reading selections demonstrates that quality of the writing in this book.   Cathy kept this book lively. By reading the back of the book some may think too much information was given, but the back says nothing compared to all the twists and turns the author throws upon the reader. I was kept in suspense during the majority of my reading.  At one point you would think you knew what was going to happen and something came out of left field and surprised you. Even with the suspense, the author was able to make this an emotional story as well. There were many times when I wanted to shed tears but the desire to know what would happen next stopped me.  The Bible related parts were interesting. It did not feel like you were reading a sermon or a fake plot. Rather, it  was thought provoking, heart searching, and soul cleansing.  Promise Me This is a collaboration of clean romance, plot twisting suspense, and Biblically-based teaching combined to deliver a  satisfying ending. I recommend this book to all readers.

I received this book free from Tyndale publishing, in exchange for my honest review.

You can purchase "Promise Me This" at CBD or Amazon and find out more about Cathy here.

Saturday, February 04, 2012


Best friends, where would we be without them? Almost everyone has one. It could be your sister, cousin, or just someone you met.

"A friend loves at all times, and a brother is born for adversity."
Proverbs 17:17

Friends love at all times. Friends are there for you. Good friends will bring godly correction to you. Friends are good listeners. Best friends share the best times together. They share inside jokes. Like all relationships, there are the usual bumps in the road, but true friends will make up pretty fast. 

We are all thankful for the friends that have come into our lives, right? Well we may be thankful, but it is more impacting and touching when you actually tell the person.

Challenge: Choose one Best Friend (because of course, you can have more than one:) and tell them how much you appreciate them, love them, and love spending time with them. Since we live in a pretty modern society I will do a blog post for my bestie.

My Best Friend/ Cousin/ Almost Sister commemoration goes to: 

I'm thankful for all the years we have spent together. We go back super far! Kianna "knew" me before I was even born. We are only 3 weeks apart.

I'm thankful for those special memories we share. Me putting some wildflowers in her hair. 

I'm thankful for all the silly times we have shared. Us being our silly selves.

 Some actually landed on her head!

I'm thankful for your beautiful inward qualities (and beautiful little face too!)

  I'm thankful for the godly woman you are becoming.

I'm thankful for you and I Love You!

Thursday, February 02, 2012

Love Is... Patient

   ''Blessed are the peacemakers: for they shall be called sons of God.''
Matthew 5:9.
Wait... Didn't I say love is patient not a peace maker. Well actually these two words correlate. When you are not walking in peace, you are walking in discord and arguments. When does one argue with a person? We argue with people when we've lost all sort of patience with them.   

Patience is to be mild and slow in avenging, to be longsuffering, slow to anger, slow to punish.  When things happen to us that are not to our liking, our first and natural (fleshly) reaction is to lash out and lose our temper. When we are impatient we become, quick to avenge, quick to anger, and quick to punish. We are so quick to do evil and not good. Dropping the issue, or asking for forgiveness does not come to us in the heat of our anger.
"Behold, how good and how pleasant it is For brethren to dwell together in unity!"
Psalm 133:1

When we live in peace, life is more pleasurable. Haven't you realized that when you walk in peace you seem lighter? You actually smile. To live a life filled with peace, we must deny ourselves. We must do what we do not want to do. We must also turn away from our anger and surrender all of our emotions to Jesus.
"Turn from evil and do good; seek peace and pursue it."
 Psalm 34:14

It is easier for the flesh to walk in anger and discord. We do not want to live like that right? The above Scripture states that we must pursue peace. Pursue is a verb. It is an action word, meaning we must DO something. 

You can start by confessing your emotions to God. Talking about your impatience and anger shows that you recognize your faults, this allows the Lord to begin ministering you. Then you need to purpose to stop. 

So ladies what can we do to remember to stop being impatient? 

Challenge: I got this idea prior to a Bible study I did with my mom. You should make an impatience journal. The one we used had 5 columns which included: Situation, People Involved, How I Expressed Irritation, Scriptural Principles I Violated, and What I will Do Next Time. This journal allows you to see how many times you get impatient. I was so surprised at how many times I got impatient in one day.

Wednesday, February 01, 2012


Sisters. Where would we be without them? Sisters are their for you, through thick and thin. You share inside jokes. You share parents. You even shared your mommy's belly. So make your relationship a worthwhile one. 

"A friend loves at all times, and a brother is born for adversary."
Proverbs 17: 17

There are countless benefits to having a sister.  One of the joys in having a sister is you can count on her being there for you. In most cases, sisters will defend each other till the end. 

However, because of the fact we are so close to our sisters, we tend to grow accustomed to them and take them for granted.   We tend to grow careless at loving them like we do others. For those who have younger sisters, it is easy to become bossy,  impatient, and expect to be obeyed immediately. I know I tend to be quicker to judge my sister for every little thing that bothers me.

Love is patient. I am horrible at being patient with my little sister. I tend to want things NOW! Love is not easily angered. You may not think it, but yes, I do get angry easily with my little sister. Love is not rude. I get so accustomed to my little sister that sometimes I do not think about her feelings and will ignore or shush her. I know I need to work on my relationship with my sister, but what a blessing to know that I can start afresh.

I want to love Sara and treat  Sara with the love that Jesus shows me. He never looks down on me when I do not know something. He never shushes me. He is kind, caring and so loving.

With every relationship, you need to cultivate it. You need to spend time with your sister to learn to love her. So I encourage you sisters to spend some good quality time with your sister(s).

Challenge: For those of you who have sisters let your younger sister do your hair and then you do hers. It is a fun way to spend time with each other. Ladies remember to stay patient with you little sisters even if they knot up your hair or yank hard:) Then come back and tell me how it went. I will try to post some pictures when I do this.