31 Days to #ASimplerJoy: God-Sized Dreams

Youre-Made-for-a-God-Sized-Dream-by-Holley-GerthI met blogger Holley Gerth at Allume last weekend.  Unbeknownst to her, she’s been encouraging me to pursue my God-Sized Dream, via my inbox, for some time now.  You can read all about it in her book, You’re Made for a God-Sized Dream: Opening the Door to All God Has for You.

A God-Sized Dream isn’t necessarily big or worthwhile in the eyes of the world.  It might be small to others.

“The size of the dream isn’t what matters…It’s not about what you do as much as how you do it.  It’s about pursuing life with passion and purpose and going wherever he leads” (pg. 12, You’re Made for a God-Sized Dream)

Surreal.  When you get to meet someone in person that you have “known” from afar…a writer, an actor, a musician, or an athlete.  She was taller than I expected.  There was a brief hug and a kind smile with the necessary niceties of an introduction in a hotel lobby.

But I feel like I got to know Holley better by talking with people who have been encouraged by  her message.  I had an accidental lunch with Mandy (there were so many wonderful “accidental” meetings at this conference).  I told her about the ebook I wrote this summer.  Y’all it is available on Amazon.  Now that is surreal.

Next week I am going to share all about Prodigal Confessions: 10 Principles that Lead Us Back to the Father.  The eBook was slightly painful in the too long to get it all ready for you department, but I also sat in the God’s timing is perfect chair all the while, knowing.  And in the end, Monday morning quarterback that I am, I can see how He has crafted the perfect timeline for this book to debut and has placed it right in the middle of my story.  Perfect.

When Mandy asked me about my God-sized dream, I told her about how God teaches me when I write and about all that I learned this year, writing about integrity, generosity, humility, confession and reconciliation.  I was excited.  She was excited for me.  And she told her friends.

Mandy invited me to meet her friends later in a conference room; they were seated in a cozy circle of chairs and invited me to sit among them.  They write for God-sizedDreams.com.

The God-sized Dream Team included some familiar faces like Holley Gerth, Carey Bailey, Kayse Pratt and, of course, Mandy Mianecki (my new friend).  I was encouraged by the reception I received from Kristin Smith, Mel Schroeder and many more warm hearts.  What amazing and generous women.

The meeting spurred me on.  I have been wallowing in uncertainty about this writing thing.  And this publishing thing.  And this speaking thing.  But I realize now that it is my God-sized Dream.

Whatever it looks like from the outside, God’s plan for my life is not too big, not too small; it is just right, for me.  And feeling comfortable in my own skin is #ASimplerJoy.  It is just a whisper away, a confession of His wisdom.  It is an exhale.  It is made possible because Jesus died to make me whole.  He lets me a small play a part in HIS big plan, and I need to stay there.

How about YOU?  What is your God-sized Dream?  Is there something you would LOVE to do…but somehow you keep getting stuck?  Pray about it and talk with the people who know you best.  Or email me – I would love to pray for you.  Just remember that God has created you for His purpose, and pursuing His purposes brings us peace.

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31 Days to #ASimplerJoy: The Precious Gifts

Friends

#ASimplerJoy for me?  Reflecting on answered prayers for deeper relationships and growing friendships.  In my real life, and online, the Lord has brought me through some rough patches, some lonely times, some heartbreak.  And He has gifted me in these last few years with several very precious people who fill my life and heart.  

Every now and then my online life and my real life collide.  God seeded Carey Bailey into my life during one of my rough patches and she has participated in some of my pivotal moments this past year.  I am so grateful for His lovingkindness, her friendship, and her ministry.  Today we also remember that the gift of God’s Word and deeper relationship with Him brings #ASimplerJoy.  And so we Pin God 1st.
November Pin God 1st

Last Spring I read a life giving book called Love Idol by Jennifer Dukes Lee.

In fact it is on my “must read yearly” book list because it reminds the recovering perfectionist in me that “life is not a one-act play, and I don’t have the energy anymore for rehearsed performances. I have accepted the lead role in my very own reality show. It is called life and it’s all improv. No scripts allowed.” (pg 137 Love Idol )

Good stuff, huh?

As the holidays approach it can be easy to fall into the trap of finding your worth and values in all that you do, produce, and create rather than living in the truth that “life in grace is about a Savior, not gold stars on a chart.” (p 136 Love Idol)

I thought what better way to enter this season of table decorating, lots of cooking, gift giving than to keep our mind centered on the truth through the scriptures referenced in Love Idol.

Meet Pin God 1st: Love Idol Edition

Just a reminder that the goal is to do your reading before you check any form of social media. If we have some minutes to spare for pinning and status updates then we have some minutes for God. Amen!?

Pin God 1st - November 1-15

November 16-30

DOWNLOAD FROM GOOGLE DRIVE HERE

I use a technique called praying the scriptures (Lectio Divina) when reading. Here is a sheet that can walk you through that process. It can take a bit to getting used to reading it 3 times in 3 different ways but once you practice you will begin to feel like there is no other way.

Lectio Divina - Helper Sheet

 

P.S. – It has been a long time since I have done a give a way around this blog so I am excited to link arms with a bunch of ladies to provide something fun, fun for you! Get entered to win ALL these goodies!

 

Kayse giveaway

a Rafflecopter giveaway

  • Kayse is giving away a collection of Martha Stewart Office items!
  • Britta is giving away a ConAir Power Facial Cleanser!
  • Jennifer is giving away a “Be Still” print!
  • Monica is giving away a Let It Go (by Karen Ehman) Study Pack!
  • Erika is giving away a super cute coffee cozy of your choice!
  • Carey (that’s me!!) is giving away Cravings, a daily devotional for moms!
  • Kristin is giving away 2 books by Angie Smith – For Such A Time As This & Audrey Bunny!
  • Anna is giving away a candle, tea, and chocolate!
  • Bethany is giving away a Ginger & Lime Sugar Scrub & a 5ml bottle of Wild Orange Essential Oil!
  • Jamie is giving away a Better Homes & Gardens Cookbook!
  • Amanda is giving away a framed print and a $10 gift card to Starbucks!
  • Leeann is giving away a set of linen notecards!

IMG_1814-2Carey Bailey is a woman who loves to dance around the living room with her husband to Michael Jackson, loves Blue Bell Pralines and Cream ice cream, loves reading to her kids in a tree house, and loves having Jesus as her BFF!

She is self professed candy junkie but sugar will never match her deep desire for helping women satisfy their cravings for abundant life. She does this through life coaching, speaking, and by sharing a one-of-a-kind devotional she authored, Cravings {The Devotional}.

You can connect with Carey through her web-site, facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, or Instagram.

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31 Days to #ASimplerJoy: Deeper Waters

Friends

This year I have been to two blogging conferences (thank you, Sweetie!). I have met some wonderful bloggers and writers. Meeting with people who are nerdy about the same stuff as you feels like a long drink of lemonade on a hot dry day.

And collaborating with other writers…same sweet drink.

At The Declare Conference I had the joy of meeting Denise Hughes.  She is a writer, writers’ coach, and the host of a future retreat called Deeper Waters (coming next summer to California).  She also has a heart for reading the word of God.

Denise started Team 365 this year to encourage women to read through the Bible together.  We use the One Year Bible, NLT (amazon.com link).  And I am so very grateful that Denise has invited me to write with Team 365.  I am so thankful for this amazing opportunity!

I was able to meet and fellowship with some of the other writers, including Denise, at the Allume conference this past weekend.  This meeting of the hearts really blessed me.  The women gathered at DeeperWaters.us are lovely, just lovely.

If you are interested in reading through the Bible, you can join us any time!  This is more than a reading program–it is a community.  Sign up for email there and every weekday you will get a devotional based on the daily reading.

Team 365 is an answer to prayer and #ASimplerJoy for me!  And I hope it can be for you too.

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Image Copyright: rez_art / 123RF Stock Photo

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31 Days to #ASimplerJoy: Fellowship & a Giveaway

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I have met some really generous people in the blogging world.  One who has been very kind to me is Kayse Pratt.  Kayse has an amazing blog (just beautiful) and a booming essential oils business, yet she still finds lots of creative ways to bring people together for fellowship online.  <sigh> I love that!

Not long ago, Kayse suggested that a group of us should combine our efforts (and prizes) to host giveaway (scroll down to enter!).  We are definitely better together, so one grateful winner will enjoy ALL of the following prizes!  :)

  • Kayse  is giving away a collection of Martha Stewart Office items!
  • Britta (thats me!) is giving away a ConAir Power Facial Cleanser!
  • Jennifer is giving away a “Be Still” print!
  • Monica is giving away a Let It Go (by Karen Ehman) Study Pack!
  • Erika is giving away a super cute coffee cozy of your choice!
  • Carey is giving away Cravings, a daily devotional for moms!
  • Kristin is giving away 2 books by Angie Smith – For Such A Time As This & Audrey Bunny!
  • Anna is giving away a candle, tea, and chocolate!
  • Bethany is giving away a Ginger & Lime Sugar Scrub & a 5ml bottle of Wild Orange Essential Oil!
  • Jamie is giving away a Better Homes & Gardens Cookbook!
  • Amanda is giving away a framed print and a $10 gift card to Starbucks!
  • Leeann is giving away a set of linen notecards!

This post is the perfect addition to the last week of my 31 Days to #ASimplerJoy.  This week I want to share how some of my favorite online friends bring me a #ASimplerJoy.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

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31 Days to #ASimpler Joy: How to Be Still

Sometimes I get my day started without spending quiet time with God.  I do spend time with God daily…it is just not always quiet.

I read scripture daily before my kids get up.  Every morning the kids and I do a devotional at breakfast together.  And I LOVE to write about God’s Word at work in my life.

But quiet time? <crickets>

Part of my Tiny Habits Challenge this week is making sure that I insert some quiet time with the Lord BEFORE I start my day.  One of my tiny habits this week is to set my prayer book out, (opened) first thing.  My unpredictable morning routine means that I need something  simple.  And here it is:

book pic

The publishers quick overview explains just why I love it so much.

This is a guide for praying Scripture back to God, organized into two parts: a daily growth guide that takes the reader through three months of daily affirmations on the Attributes of God, The Works of God, My Relationship to God, The Character I want to Cultivate, and My Relationships to Others

I have had this book for years.  My sweet Momma gave it to me.  I have used it off and on since I received it.  I can spend a leisurely time if I like, or I can have a focused quiet time for five minutes that really puts my mind on God.  Each daily affirmation is scripture, phrased with “I” statements, making it very personal.  I know that starting my day with this practice again will be #ASimplerJoy.

How about you?  What do you do for quiet time?

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