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What's Your Worth? God's Top Priority

My favorite new place in the world is snuggling with my 3-month old as she takes a nap.  Every time we snuggle, I kiss her on her forehead and cheek whispering the words “I love you” over and over even though she has no idea what that means.  She is such a gift!  She has no idea how much she means to us, how much we wanted her, or how much we thank God for her every day promising to take care of this precious gift He has given us.  She has no clue of her worth yet.

As a single girl, I didn’t always know my worth either.  I had no idea how much God loved me, how much He had for me, or how much He actually thought of me throughout the day.  After all, I was single and my purpose would begin after I got married, right?  Because I believed that for a bit, I found myself feeling anxious believing I would be the last one married, the last one to have kids, the last one to reach my career goals, the last one to……the list goes on.  It wasn’t until I finally rested in God and allowed Him to snuggle with me, kiss me on my forehead and cheek while whispering how much He loved me, did I realize how much I was worth.  I was worth a whole lot come to find out!   Because my daughter knows we have food just for her, she instinctively opens her mouth when it's time to eat never doubting that we’ll have enough.  Just like her, all I needed to do was be open for all the good things God had just for me.

Once I knew my worth, I no longer settled for less.  I didn’t settle for a date with just anyone, drama filled relationships, unhealthy friendships and so much more.  I didn’t settle for who I was either.  I was worth the effort to be molded.  As I embraced my value, I was constantly amazed how much He entrusted me with.  He had plans for me; things I had better be doing even while I was single.

As my daughter grows up, I can only  pray I show her daily just how much she is worth.   I pray that while she is single, she understands God has a plan & purpose designed especially for her by His own hands.  This is exactly how God feels about you!  He wants you to know how much you are worth to Him; how valuable you really are!  All you have to do is open your mouth just like my little girl and receive what God has for you, now, while you are single.

Embrace and enjoy Snuggling with your Heavenly Father as He gives you little kisses on your forehead and cheek while whispering, “I love you” over and over again!

Jeremiah 29:11 (NIV) For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the LORD, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.

{Originally published 2011}

[title subtitle="Book: Now, While You Are Single: Walking Out Your Purpose Before You Say "I Do""][/title]

Now, While You Are Single is a practical guide to help women discover and embrace their true identity in Christ through a journey of healing, ultimately revealing God’s purpose and plan for their life while they are single. 

Purchase for you or as a gift here!

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[title subtitle="Design Labs"][/title]

Single ladies! We will be hosting Design Labs in the Austin area this summer featuring Heather's book. Follow us on Facebook for dates & times.

Anything You Can Do, I Can Do Better!

I was 17, walking from the girls bathroom to my Geology class during passing period.  I had an extra spring in my step that day – I looked so cute!  I’ll never forget the grey shirt with black velvety stripes, the black pleated skirt ala Britney Spears coupled with my new patterned opaque tights and Mary Jane shoes.  I spotted a couple of girls at their lockers looking as cute as me; but my boobs were bigger and my waist smaller and I thought to myself, “I look way better!” No sooner was I seated at my lab table then the Swedish exchange student walked over to me and said, “Kala…” he didn't have to finish his sentence.  I knew immediately that I had walked down the hallway with my skirt tucked into the back of my tights and I was completely mortified!  As a teenager I cringed at the event, as an adult I realize the lesson I was being taught.  I wasn't better.

“Let us not become conceited, or provoke one another, or be jealous of one another.” Galatians 5:26 (New Living Translation)

More and more employers have put an emphasis on teamwork in the workplace, leaving little room for those who do not play nice with others.  I recently transferred into and new job and replaced someone who was great.  While it’s easier to find the things that he did poorly and showcase MY strengths, the real challenge is focusing on his wins and reminding myself that I am building upon that.

My way, his way… neither is better or worse.  We lead differently plain and simple, we have a different approach to business, training and communication.  I'm certain that I will be able to take my job to another level, I am also certain that a great leader can step away to let another shine; and for that I'm grateful for this chance.

“Don't be selfish; don't try to impress others.  Be humble, thinking of others as better than yourselves.”  Philippians 2:3 (New Living Translation)

Stoplight Prayer:  Father in Heaven, thank you for the talents you have given me.  Help me to recognize when I am being selfish and when I’m frustrated, show me the bigger picture so that I can move on.

Believe in the Greatness of Others

 Daniel, who was called Belteshazzar, was shocked for a bit. What he thought about frightened him.

The king declared, “Don’t let the dream and its meaning scare you, Belteshazzar.”

Then Belteshazzar answered, “Sir, I wish the dream to be for those who hate you and its meaning to be for your enemies!

Daniel 4:19

Daniel has every reason under the sun to not be for Nebuchadnezzar. However when he is given the interpretations of this dream his response seems to be filled with love and care for this king. A king who not only worships a different god but has renamed Daniel with that god's name. It seems Daniel has more than insight into his dream, but sees the greatness inside of his king.

A few years ago there was a popular bracelet circulating in the Christan community.  WWJD what would Jesus do? The idea being that you would see this bracelet, and remember to act the way you would think Jesus would act. I'm not sure if it worked or not.

I think today with  global concerns, our political climate, and economic worries maybe the question we should be asking ourselves is "what would Daniel do?".

No, I am not trying to be political. You did not hear me say anything about how we would vote. I am saying that maybe we should take a hint from Daniel and believe the best in people. In our country. In our economy. In our world. When we open our mouth to speak about such things are we speaking life or death? If we are the prophets of our own lives, and if we are the sons and daughters of God, made to bring hope and life and light to the earth than what are our words bringing? Are we cultivating honor respect and love? Are we like Daniel, sad when thing happen to people different than ourselves? Are we compassionate to those who don't worship our God? Because the truth is people do not care about what you believe until they believe that you care. The love of God sees the greatness in all of us.

 

Do you find it easier to agree with the negative things going on in your daily life or to speak hope?

Lord,

Thank you for your goodness. Allow us to have eyes to see your goodness in all of your creation.

Amen

Block It Out - Hot Trend

Color! It's everywhere this fashion season. But it's being used in a more un-common way than before.The new trend is "color-blocking".The concept couldn't be easier to comprehend: wearing articles of clothing in chunks, or "blocks" of color.

The idea is to piece together vibrant colors you normally wouldn't think "match".

This can range from a casual capri, to a tailored skirt, or just a fun and funky bag.

I've also noticed, I've spent less on purchasing clothes because I can mix-and-match pieces more so than before. You can go weeks without having a repeat affair.

And saving money always makes a girl happy

Be bold! Throw caution to the wind and trying pairing a few things together. There's really no way you can go wrong.

 

1.) I love a polished pencil skirt at the office and yet there's still room for a little jazz.  A V-Neck sweater follows the same tailored effect, but the blocks of color come in way of green and lilac and small hints of red and gold in a belt and necklace.

2.) Neon's like this yellow are a must! The richness of the blue on bottom, heighten the concept while still keeping a classic look. It's been paired with a red purse and longer necklace with hughes of orange. (Hint: Necklaces should hit either above the breast line or below, but never on. This keeps "the girls" from becoming a main focus)

3.) Going for a more casual look? Try your color in a skinny capri. Here, it's paired with a less vibrant blue and then a burst of yellow in the belt and necklace off-set the combo.

When I Was Young

  When I was a little girl my Dad would pick me up from ballet and take me to Baskin Robbins every week.  He sat in a big swivel chair and I sat right next to him in a kid size chair eating my daiquiri ice sorbet with a tasting spoon.  It was sour, not alcoholic and boy was it tasty.  I remember him brushing my hair, putting it up into pigtails and braiding them.  My hair, always adorned with the hand painted hair ribbons he made for me.  My favorite memory is singing show tunes with him in the kitchen, me singing the part of Annie and my Dad singing the lines of Daddy Warbucks.  “I don’t need anything but you,” we would sing together.

I can’t say that my Father is a man of many words.  Perhaps it comes from growing up with 3 sisters, or perhaps it’s 35 years of living with my Mom and 2 daughters.  That being said, when he does share nuggets or stories I listen.

A stubborn fool despises his father's discipline, but whoever appreciates a warning shows good sense.  Proverbs 15:5  (GOD'S WORD® Translation)

Despite the relationship you have with your father it’s important to understand that his life experiences are things you can learn from.  Sometimes you learn what you should be doing and sometimes you learn to walk in the opposite direction.

Each June we have the opportunity to celebrate and honor our fathers.  Take the time to truly honor both your earthly and heavenly fathers.  This is one seed you want to plant.  I believe I’m reaping my harvest now, I see it every week when my husband takes our daughter out on a daddy /daughter date to Starbucks and Toys R Us.

One of the greatest things my father said to me, while broken hearted in my early twenties, was, “Honey, if he doesn’t like you then he must be gay.”  You see, not all nuggets of wisdom have to be so serious!  I’m tucking that one away for my own daughter… when she’s 25!

Stoplight Prayer:  Father in heaven thank you for my Father & Husband.  Help me to find ways to continue to honor them even when they are difficult and make me want to scream.  Please continue to guide & protect them and they continue to do the same for us.

Seeing is Believing....AFTER You're Obedient

  "For the word of the Lord holds true and we can trust everything he does,"

Psalm 33:4

 

Trusting in the Lord doesn't always look like a bright idea. Hear me out on this. Although we may know deep down inside that it's right, to other people, it may look odd, confusing or even crazy.

Are you willing to look a little crazy to get the best from God?

When the Lord told Noah to build an arc, there wasn't a drop of rain in the sky. It was probably a  picturesque day.

Despite what people thought of him and all the mean things they said both behind his back and to his face, Noah did what God asked him to do.

Time flew by and eventually a great flood came over the Earth. Noah was prepared. Who's laughing now?

Doing what God asks us to do may not be easy, but He always has our best interest at heart.

He gave Jeremiah one of the most popular scriptures to prove it. "For I know the plans I have for you. Plans to prosper you and not to harm you. Plans to give you hope and a future."

 

Dear Jesus,

What you're asking of me is not easy and you know it. Although I want to do what  feels right to my flesh, I'm going to make every effort to walk in obedience . Jesus, I'm doing this for you and I thank you in advance for the reward I'll  receive because of it.

Genesis 22:18

Psalm 25:3

Own It

It was at my last New Year's Eve party that it happened. I'd spent all day cooking food and cleaning and planning so that I could have my friends over. As people started trickling in, I noticed that one of my closest friends seemed a little grumpy. So I stepped up my game and tried to make sure she had a good time. Towards the end of the night, our conversation took a quick turn into Sassy City. And in front of everyone, she snapped at me...Cue the awkward silence. I had no idea how to react. So my simple reply was, "Ok", as I angrily walked out of the room. After that, I didn't mention it for months. Even when she text me an apology right after she'd left. Big mistake.

You see, I thought that not saying anything about it and "letting it go" was the proper thing to do. I thought, "Well, I shouldn't get this mad about things." And I didn't want  to make the situation worse by bringing it up again. But, inevitably, my frustration came out in a big way months later. Not only did it come out, but it came out stronger than it should have because by that point, I'd held it in pretty long.

What I'm learning is that sometimes, it doesn't matter whether you should or shouldn't feel a certain way. What matters is that you feel it! Yes, ideally, we'd always be patient, forgiving, understanding, and all that jazz. But, we're human. And sometimes,  you just can't force yourself to feel those things. So, try to recognize when it's beneficial to speak up and own your feelings a bit more.

Now all you sassy ladies, don't go to the opposite extreme either. This does not mean you should give every emotion you feel free rein. Don't just confront people whenever and however you feel like, because that really doesn't accomplish much either.

Communication truly is an art form and it's tricky to learn. But your relationships deserve your honesty. Proverbs 24:26 says, "An honest answer is like a kiss on the lips." So the next time you feel yourself stifling your feelings of hurt or frustration, just try and address them in some way before they consume you. Because the only thing worse than an uncomfortable conversation with someone about how you feel is unresolved tension that eats away at your relationship!

I've Been Robbed

  While meeting with a co-worker during a one on one brainstorming session I presented a few ideas and she shared hers.  We had some great thoughts and after several hours of collaboration decided she would present the best one to the boss during their next meeting.  Trusting her turned out to be a big mistake.

 

“ ‘Do not steal.  “ ‘Do not lie.  “ ‘Do not deceive one another.  “ ‘Do not defraud your neighbor or rob him.  “ ‘Do not hold back the wages of a hired man overnight.  Leviticus 19:11 & 13 (New International Version)

She presented the idea as her own and made it seem as though I just pulled some data together at her request.  To make matters worse, our idea is being rolled out to the entire company and it looks like it’s all her.  Did she want the glory?  A reason to ask for more money?

If you have been the thief in a situation like this it’s time to face the music.  Apologize to those you have hurt in the past and don’t do it again.  The bible reminds us throughout both new & old testaments that stealing leads straight to death.  In this case I’m thinking it could be a career ender.

Perhaps you, like me, have been the victim.  If that’s the case forgive and move on.  Remember that you reap what you sow and God’s got your back.

In case you’re wondering I have a new approach for idea sharing.  Either I share in a larger group setting or I send an email after a brainstorming pow-wow recapping the discussion.  Save a copy, print a copy… just in case.

Stoplight Prayer:  Father in heaven, thank you for blessing me with the job that I have.  Help me to work together with others and give us the opportunity to shine.

Hungry for More:  Proverbs 10:2 tells it like it is and 1 Timothy 6:3-10 reminds us what happens we think about money.

What Not To Wear

Spring is here, or if you’re a Texan you can say spring never left.  If you’re like me you’re packing up your sweaters and suede boots and pulling out the spaghetti straps and open toe sandals.  But sometimes enjoying fashion can be tricky during work hours. Like a gold ring in a pig’s snout is a beautiful woman who shows no discretion.  Proverbs 11:22 (New International Version) 

In the Old Testament, pigs were unclean & untouchable animals, so the idea of putting something as extremely valuable and beautiful as a gold ring in a pig’s snout would be an incredible waste.  To show no discretion means to be without taste, tact & grace.  It seems a bit extreme, comparing an indiscreet woman to a pig, but it sure does put God’s perspective on the subject into place.

God has set some rather high standards for women.  We are to be noble of character, hard working, giving, crafty, wise and modest.  It’s a tall order, but in true God fashion the order has its purpose.  He’s put these expectations in place to keep us out of compromising situations.  If you think that dressing provocatively is not YOUR problem, think again.

The decisions you make each morning standing in your closet can have more of an impact than you know on someone’s marriage, friendship, employment status or their walk with God.

Whether you work in an office or as a cashier in a grocery store these  “What Not To Wear” basics still apply.

  • Keep your cleavage out of the workplace.  The only girls people should be seeing are the ones you birthed.
  • Perma-wedgies are not sexy.  Skinny jeans are great, but if stopping at the drug store on the way home for yeast infection medication is probable, then you probably shouldn’t wear them to begin with.
  • Your husband is the only one who needs to see your v-jay-jay.  So while super short skirts & shorts may have their place in fashion, knee length is more appropriate.
  • If you have to get a bikini wax to wear low rise anything – they are too low!  There is no need to show off your thong or booty crack.

Allow me to remind you that charm is deceptive, and beauty is fleeting.  God may have blessed you with curves and beauty but he created you to be so much more.  When you’re getting dressed in the morning, whom are you thinking about?  Your clothes do not define who you are, your character does; and dressing inappropriately is a direct reflection of your character.

Stoplight Prayer:  Father in heaven, thank you creating me and giving me this body to serve you.  Help my sisters and I to make wise decisions before we step out the door each morning so that we are not stumbling blocks in each other’s lives.

Still Hungry?  Proverbs 31 defines a woman of noble character and 1 Peter 3:3-4 reminds us that beauty is more than what is on the outside.

A Special Valentine's Message

Ahhh… Valentine's. The love holiday. For some it brings smiles, roses, candy and a nice dinner out. For others it brings knots to the stomach, tears, feelings of failure and anxiety. No matter which camp you find yourself in, I would like to share an idea that could potentially make any girl’s Valentines extra sweet and special. There's the coolest verse in the Bible found in a tiny little book tucked away in the depths of the Old Testament. Song of Solomon 1:2 says, “Let Him kiss me with the kisses of His mouth- for your love is better than wine.” I have pondered the exquisite beauty of that analogy. Even if you don’t like wine, you can appreciate the fact that one type of fruit, the grape, can make 20+ different categories of wines, and each of those are not exactly the same. If you look at music, there are 12 main notes on a piano, that repeat. And how many different songs are there? An infinite number. Simple songs, complex songs, short songs, long songs, happy songs, sad songs. The possibilities are endless, just like with grapes and wine.

It’s the same with God’s love. The sheer vastness of all the dimensions of His love is amazing. Not in an overwhelming way, though, because God knows just how to pair His love with your circumstances.

Some need His tender love, the comforting kind that lets you take a deep breath and rest in His loving-kindness. Some need His tough love to say, “No, you need to cut this out of your life if you want be healthy and grow.” Some need His Shepherd kind of love because you're walking through the valley of the shadow of death and you're afraid, and you need to remember that He's right there with you and His love can cast out that fear. Some need His Father’s love, to realize that you belong; you're a part of His family. Some need to know Him as Lover of your Soul. He not only fought for your soul, but He's deeply in love with you. His desire is towards you. Some need His faithful love, because you haven’t had an example of faithful love and you desperately need to know that He's still there and that nothing can separate you from His love- not your feelings, not your circumstances, not your loneliness. Nothing, can separate you from His love.

He wants you to know that He loves you this Valentine's Day and He wants you to experience a new dimension of His love. Try it. Carve some time out to spend with Him this year. A special Valentine's date. You and your Creator. If you need some inspiration, try putting on “The Very Thought of You” by Natalie Cole and sing it to Him. Write Him a note.  Have a moment, Woman to Creator. He will meet you there.