I forgive you.

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I forgive you.

I forgive you because I know you don’t hurt me from a cruel place, you hurt me from pain you are feeling.

I forgive you for misplacing your anger and resentment and aiming it at me.

I forgive you for blaming me for things I had no control over or knowledge of.

I forgive you because you are broken, and it’s okay.

I forgive you because I love you.

I love you because in these broken pieces, you will find a way to put yourself back together again- you will see the masterpiece that you truly are.

I love you because you are not less than, you are enough, you are so enough that the word “enough” doesn’t even begin to describe you.

I love you because you have grown and blossomed right in from of me.

I love you because you make me a better person, you make me want to grow and love myself for who I am.

I love you because although we want the best for each other we don’t feel as though we need each other.

I love you because it feels effortless and we don’t have to force it.

I love you because you are beautiful on the inside as well.

I love you because you showed me how to love me.

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Choices

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When I can’t sleep my mind starts to run WILD. Not in like a crazy way, like dark things but in the way that I start to wonder what to eat for breakfast then I wonder what to wear tomorrow, followed by wondering what the next year will look like. This is usually very late at night, because of course, when I want to fall asleep my brain is LIT.

I try to watch a show that is boring so I can fall asleep but no that doesn’t help. I try to listen to soothing music but then I have to use the rest room because there’s usually some water noises in there somewhere. I try to read but then I get really into the book I’m reading and eventually I just have to put it down. It’s not often that this happens honestly, but when it does I end up thinking about every decision I have ever made in my life up until this point.

The other night this was the case, and as I pondered over my last 24 (young)  years of life there have been some very powerful moments and it’s interesting to see how even little choices brought me to where I am today. To joining a club in high school brought me to my current church and I still have the same leaders I did in the club as I do in church and it makes me so happy to say that because the leadership at church is amazing and so LOVING which is what makes us all feel like a family.

Then I look at family and how we have grown in the last couple years. It’ll be four years in June that I lost my mom and it still feels as recent as the day it happened.  Thinking back to that time brings up very real and very raw emotions. I think back to all that day – my heart quickens in rhythm as my eyes begin to well up with tears- and my heart breaks all over again. I miss her every day and there isn’t a day that I go without thinking about her. She was so smart and hard working, shes the reason I am the way I am today and why I work so hard. My three nephews get bigger everyday and soon I won’t be the tallest in the family anymore. It’s hard to imagine that one day I will have one of those of my own but I feel it’s bound to happen. My mom had three girls, now it’ll be all boys.

My life hasn’t been perfect up until now but it has been filled with some pretty perfect moments. Everytime I got to hug my mom and see her smile make it all worth it. As mother’s day approaches it brings those sad feelings up again but I know she wouldn’t want it to be that way, she would tell me to celebrate my sisters and tell you Vee how much I admire you. The boys are so loving and pure – and so motivated because they see how much you love and encourage them.  Jen I know you’re probably reading this and were waiting to see if I’d mention you- of course. Aiden is such a great person, he’s getting so big and I know how much he has in store for his future. His complete life is you, because he see’s your hustle and I admire that about you.

Every single day God gives us another opportunity to make an impact. In someone’s life, or just someones day. What do you choose to do with that?  I don’t know about you but I’m pretty happy about the choices I’ve made so far.

I challenge you to make a choice you were scared to make before but now you grant yourself the courage to take.

-xo

Do Not Become Consumed

a0dacc5b96bdb17f3d67b3b67f51aa3cGrowing up in the 21st Century has been interesting to say the least. Our phones weigh almost nothing, there’s robots who greet you at the airport, and if something cool happened but you didn’t snap or take a photo of it- did it even really happen?

I have been victim of social media for years now, at first it was neat to see what your friends would post and we were just teenagers but now that I see what social media has become it’s quite intense. People’s lives have been ruined by it, relationships have been torn apart due to things that happened on Instagram or Snapchat. Some people even only post what they want people to see when in reality they live a completely different life.

On the other hand social media has done great things and celebrities that have this immense platform have now taken it into their hands to spread positive things rather than just selfies. It’s clear to see that social media can either bring out the best in someone or just the vain in someone. I have taken a vow to stop posting that many pictures of myself and to instead post the beauty that surrounds me. For example, this past weekend I went to my church retreat and I barely had phone service and it was AMAZING. I’m so thankful for it because I was able to be fully immersed in the experience and appreciate all the breakthroughs that God was giving me. I have never felt more at peace that I did after coming home from the retreat, and a lot of that came from disconnecting to the outside world and connecting with God and building that relationship.

I want you to take this into consideration; does posting your every move really matter? Who are you posting it for? To flaunt or to brag? What if you took a break from technology every now and then. Try to to disconnect and I promise you that using that free time to journal or write in your prayer journal will definitely benefit you in the long term. We should not allow the outside world to consume us because these earthly things are all temporary whereas Jesus is eternal and will always provide and fulfill us. Those likes or reposts or comments won’t fill those voids that only God can fill.

Lastly, I used to add a prayer at the end of my blogs (completely optional) and I feel like I should bring that back.

Prayer:

God, I thank you for all the blessings you have brought into my life,
I thank you for the relationships that you have allowed to grow and I pray that these relationships that I invest in will bring into fruition more love and hold you at the center of it all.
I pray that these earthly things like my job, my clothes, technology, etc. will not consume me and control my life – I will keep you as my anchor always and remember that I should not allow myself to become overwhelmed.
I pray that the person reading this feels your love and remembers everyday that they’re not alone, ever. That you, God are always with them in the good, the bad and the unknown.

 

-xo

 

New Beginnings | #SelflessYear

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As another new year commences I begin to plan out my goals for the year as so many of us do. Although many like to make a list of all the resolutions they plan to complete this year, I know the majority of them will fall through within the first six months. The reason so many of our “resolutions” don’t work out is because they’re focused around materialistic things. For example: losing weight, making more money, being more successful, changing your wardrobe, etc.

I’ve also come across many posts about how people want this New Year to be their “Selfish Year” meaning they want to focus on themselves, they want to grow more, and they want to know who they truly are. My question to you is this; in all this time after all your struggles how has ONLY depending on yourself worked out? The reality of it is that we are only human; we can try so hard to carry the world on our shoulders but it’s too much. I read this quote once that read;

“That Mountain that you carry on your shoulders you were only meant to climb.”

This struck such a nerve with me! How many times did I try to take on tasks I knew were out of my league, how many times did I say “I don’t need any help, I will do it on my own”, how many times did I push others away? In 2016, God really showed me the complete opposite. When we put God before anything else, we lead such a worry-free life. There’s no need to stress over finding something that is destined for you because it will find its way to you on its own.

When we let God lead the way, you will find all the “resolutions” you want to accomplish. He will always bring you happiness and success because He wants the best for you. Numerous times last year when I let go of things and put them in God’s hands they ended up working out because it wasn’t me trying to control everything. The only thing I can control is what I do for others. So, my goal this year is to make it my Selfless Year! What does that mean you may ask? Well, I want to make this year the year of helping others. Sure, I’ve donated in the past, I’ve helped out at feeding the homeless but to be honest it was never whole-heartedly. I plan to help at numerous drives, shelters, etc. this year with your help! Send me (in the comments below) name or links to your favorite shelters (all kinds), food drives, etc. so I can get started ASAP! Additionally, I will be documenting about all the events using the hashtag “#SelflessYear” so stay tuned for that! Thank you in advance and I can’t wait to see what this year has in store for us all!

Xoxo

A Year in Retrospect: 2016

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Picture Credit: Erick Lopez (click name)

 

This year has been a roller coaster to say the least. As the year came to an end all I see in my feed are things like “I can’t wait for this year to be over” and although it definitely wasn’t an easy year it was one that I will appreciate in many ways. There were quite a few lows for me this year and it was in those times that I really couldn’t rely on anything other than my  faith and trust in God to get my through it.

To be honest, this year taught me just how much trusting God gets you. I don’t mean this in the sense that God is a wish granting factory- because He isn’t. What I mean is that if you pray about something, or for that matter just let something go and give it to God then He will do something great in your life.

At the beginning of the year I was unhappy at a job I didn’t love, I was worried about my financial situation and stressing over the repairs for my car of five years. Fast forward to the end of the year and I’m at a job I love and continue to learn more and more daily, with a steady income, and my new car which is saving me a ton in gas and repairs! I am so grateful for all God has done in my life, and when asked how I did it- I honestly just say “it wasn’t me, that was all God” but that is the honest truth. I am still learning and working on my relationship with God and I’m so blessed for all He continues to do for me and those around me.

One of my biggest prayers this year was that God blessed the people I surround myself with and to see where all my friends are brings tears to my eyes and the biggest smile to my face. To see the people I love most getting their dream homes, bringing life into the world, and becoming one with their soul mates- I couldn’t be happier for you guys.  Although I didn’t do any of those things I’m not worried about it because I know God has big things planned for me and His timing is perfect so things will happen when they have to.

It’s crazy really because 2016 held a lot of pain but the joy that came out of it is unbelievable.  I was able to get a new job, my car, move to a new place, and travel. These are all things I prayed over 2016 and I have BIG goals for 2017 so I am excited to see where God is taking me and what is in store for us all. Overall, this year wasn’t easy at all and I’m sure many of us can agree with that but it’s definitely a learning experience and one I won’t take for granted!

Here’s to new experiences, growth in all areas of our lives, and to promises being fulfilled.

BRING IT 2017!  

Gratefull.

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Hello again,

If you’re like me your first thought was just like mine. Is that a typo? The answer is NO.

It’s been a while since my last post and I’ve been thinking a lot. Not because I didn’t want to write anymore but because I want what I write to actually be something that matters. I’ve never been into seeking validation through social media of any sort, so when I started this blog it was really always about having an outlet for myself to express what I’m feeling or what I’m going through. So, to bring this back to the topic at hand- I’ve been focusing a lot on being grateful.

I don’t know about you but when something I have been asking for (or in my case praying for) comes to fruition, I feel so overwhelmed that I go through about a hundred emotions at once. There’s always a little bit of doubt that I don’t deserve said thing but at the end of the day I remind myself to be grateful no matter what.

I have now even made it a part of my daily routine that the first thing I do before I even open my eyes is to thank God. I have been through a lot of loss in my life (which I will speak on in a future post) and it has shown me the importance of every day or every fresh start I am given. It’s so easy to wake up and groan a little because of all the things you have to accomplish but all that does is discourage you. Wouldn’t it feel so much better to open your eyes with the realization that this day is a whole new start? That yesterday was yesterday and it no longer affects today. The choice is truly yours. Now, I’m not saying that every day will be perfect because that is not realistic and I try to be realistic because that’s life, shit happens and things go wrong. You might not have any influence over those things but you can decide on how you let these things affect you.

Let me tell you a little story, when I was in the works of getting my new job I had landed the interview and I had it the next day. I wake up the next morning and remembered I had to print a fresh resume because I know it’s key to bring it to the interview but I was out of ink so I had to go to Office Depot to print it and when I get to my car I put the keys in and NOTHING. It won’t turn on; it doesn’t even make the clicking noise to tell me it’s the battery- nada. Initially I freaked out and started to panic and texted all my friends to see what they were doing today. My best bet was to hitch a ride to El Segundo (which is near LAX in case you don’t know) and pay for the gas but no one was free. So, I sat there for a good five minutes before I stopped myself and said out loud “No, this will not stop me.” Next thing I did was get an Uber to Office Depot, and another back to my house. I get ready and look in the mirror before ordering an Uber to El Segundo, I say “You Got This” and head out- I made it thirty minutes early and was hired within two days.

This was just one of many times in my life when God has had my back and I am so grateFULL, I am full of joy, full of love, full of peace, and full of grace. I am not always worthy of all the blessings in my life but I truly am grateful for them all. My point is to always be grateful for all the things that are happening in this season of your life right now, whether it’s good or bad. If it’s good then you can be grateful for having the opportunity to have it in your life, and if it’s bad then you will be grateful for where this storm or situation leads you. Either way, there will always be something you can take from it and learn from it. I’m personally in a really good place, and I’m just blessed so now I’m just trying to enjoy it every day.

xo

When Opportunity Knocks 

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This week has been full of enlightenment. I am insanely grateful for every moment that I am blessed with. I’m so lucky to be surrounded with like-minded individuals who always want to see me do better, who encourage me to pursue my dreams as well as setting high expectations for myself.

It is so easy to become content; in life, in your job, with your partner, or simply with yourself.  While I don’t think there is anything wrong with being content, I do think that being content for too long can be harmful. We should always be setting new goals for ourselves, wanting to better ourselves and pursuing things that are out of our comfort zone. Comfort zones are just that, comfortable. It’s like sitting on a comfortable couch and watching tv; at first you say it’ll be for one show then next thing you know you’ve been on the couch for hours with a large portion of your day wasted. This is what we do in life, we stay content and we waste portions of our lives.

I was blessed enough to receive a great blessing in relation to work this week and it was a reminder that we should always be pushing ourselves to do better, and aim higher. There is always something you can do to become greater, practice only makes you a better version of yourself. I know much of the hesitation in regards to this is fear; of failure, of not getting the position you wanted, of being rejected. Why do we see failure as a bad thing? In my eyes I see failure as a motivation. It shows that I actually tried. You must grow to embrace all your obstacles and let downs because they are in reality redirections.

I feel as though often times God creates a fork in the road and when we think we should go one way he closes that door and instead opens two more. I recently heard this from a wise man who said “there will always be great opportunities in life, but they won’t always be right for you.” God is always one step ahead of you. It’s okay to not know what is ahead of you, just be excited because God will only have good things in store for you. You need to let go of being content and learn to embrace the new opportunities that God has in store for you.

(The following is optional)

Prayer: God, thank you for always worrying about me and my success. Thank you for always keeping the good people in my life and showing me who is not healthy for me to be around and finding a way for them to exit my life. You know what I need before I realize it and I am so grateful that you will always have a plan even when I don’t. I thank you and I love you. In Jesus’ name, amen.