Tuesday, January 19, 2021

A Daily Reminder

 God created you to be the most incredible balance between soft and strong. And you have the incredible ability to be so many things to so many people. But sometimes being a friend, a wife, a mother, a sister, a partner in Christ can truly be exhausting.  

Because your Father in Heaven has gifted you with talent, created you with compassion and loves you beyond measure take solace in the Lord’s word and promises.  

Something I’ve learned over the years is sometimes I strive in pain. Not because I want pain but because I know unless I find a way to do that (strive in pain, disappointments, setbacks) there will always be a false illusion that once I get to where I’m going or accomplish what I’m working towards “I’ll be happy.” But if you can’t find happiness in the ugliness then you’re not going to be able to find/see it in beauty either. 

Saturday, January 9, 2021

Dating with a Purpose

 With all the things we do in life with purpose, for a reason, with an end goal, then why not date with a purpose? One important principle that dating operates on is purpose. The million dollar question when it comes to purposeful dating is why do we date? At the end of the day , the purpose of dating is to make a clear pathway to marriage. So dating with a purpose is essential if you want to find someone to create and sustain a healthy relationship with. Hopefully the end goal of your dating is marriage, but dating is necessary to be a bridge to get you to your end goal. 

Although the end goal of dating is marriage that doesn’t mean that after one date or the first person you go out on a date with, that you have to marry that person. Dating is more like interviewing someone for the most important role as your partner. That does not mean showing up to your date with an application and interview questions (because that’s a surefire way for that date to end quickly 😁) but you should have an idea of what you want. Dating shouldn't be for temporary companionship to alleviate loneliness or to meet physical needs. Dating takes you to the next level towards something greater and better - a God-honoring, purpose-fulfilling partnership.

Here's some freebies for my single ladies that helped me when I was dating:

1. Know what you want. (what are your relationship intentions)

2. Know who you want. (have a general idea of what you want in a partner, but don't be so picky that you miss a great possibility)

3. Create a deal breaker list. (just something to keep you accountable for the things you will not tolerate; i.e. someone with a history of violence)

4. Cultivate relationship awareness. 

5. Cultivate self-awareness. (finding and maintaining a healthy relationship is close to impossible if you lack self-awareness)

6.Don't be attached to the outcome. (take your date(s) one step at a time)

Lastly, this should probably be a freebie... but make yourself available girlfriend. As Christian women we hear other women say "they are waiting on God to send them their husband" or they quote Proverbs 18:22 "a man that finds a wife, finds a good thing." While I'm not debating the scripture what I am asking is where is that man going to find you, or where is God going to send him? If you are just at home or work then you'll probably be waiting a long time my friend unless he's a delivery driver. Why you wait on the Lord.... make yourself available to be found. Be open to "unconventional" ways to meet people. I'm not talking about anything that causes you to sin when I say unconventional but just be real with yourself, you might not meet your future husband at church. My husband and I met through a dating website. So get out there girlfriend, have some fun, and date with a purpose.

Check out the Dating with a Purpose episode on the Embrace Your Diva Apple Podcast. 

Saturday, December 19, 2020

Self Care is Essential

 Being successful (and I’m not talking about just women who are entrepreneurs; mothers, students, daughters, friends, etc...)often comes with a massive to do list. As women, we do so much for others and we simply do not put ourselves first often enough. But without giving our body, our mind and our overall self a break, and taking care of us, we cannot possibly be successful in every role we find ourselves in. Take time for you! Not just on the weekend, but everyday of the week. Unfortunately I cannot guarantee that everyday will be like a day at the spa, but setting aside 15 minutes a day to do something for yourself is OK and beneficial. Believe me you are much more useful, successful and lovable at 100% than you are at 0%.

So what are some things you can start to do to take care of yourself and show yourself some love? And this is by no means in any particular order.

1. Value Alone Time
Alone time can allow you to recharge and re-calibrate. It gives you opportunity to be with yourself and reflect on who you are, what you want and what you're doing or not doing. You can meditate, reflect in gratitude or even pray but whatever you do make time for this.

2. Eating Healthy
Trust me, I need to work on this one too but I've also learned not to punish myself if I have a mini cupcake or a slice of cheesecake sparingly. I mean really... it's not the end of the world. But it is important to nourish our bodies with good, healthy foods. I meal prep to make it easier for me and I make sure not to grocery shop when I'm hungry. Remember those 5 basic food groups you learned about as a child: breads/grains, fruits, veggies, milk/dairy, and lean meat/fish. Well they are still good for providing a well balanced diet.

3. Sleep
I know you might be saying to yourself.... "like well duh" but believe me sometimes we take a good night sleep for granted or maybe you overdo it and sleep the day away. Do you know that your sleep and your mood go hand in hand. Have you ever not gotten enough sleep and just went to work or school or had a simple conversation with joy and enthusiasm? Chances are the answer to that question is no! Good sleep makes you feel happy, healthy and strong. Get you a good sleep mask, throw on some ocean sounds (whatever works for you even no music/sounds), pray and close those eyes girlfriend.

4. Treat Yourself
Think about it, what does that look like to you? I'm a working wife and mother who also volunteers at my church (my life is not like The Real Housewives of... no disrespect) but it's not. So treating myself sometimes is taking a nice relaxing bubble bath with my candles and a book at the end of the day. There are lots of ways to treat yourself. You can buy yourself something (even if it's a latte at Starbucks), get a massage, eat that piece of cheesecake (don't worry it's not the end of the world), or take a relaxing bubble bath. I'm not talking about things that need to be grandiose or expensive, I'm just talking about making yourself a priority and treating yourself to something nice. I mean why not, you deserve it.

5. Exercise
No, that is not a foul word. Your physical being is a part of your self-care. I only, just like you have this one body. It's not like when we get tired of the one we are in, we get to pick out a new one. We only get one and we have to take care of it. I'm not telling you to become a gym rat but I am encouraging you to move a little so you can build a stronger, healthier you. 15-30 minutes a few times a week.

There are many more ways to incorporate self-care into your daily routine and make it habit, but these are just a few. If you have some suggestion than please share, let's encourage one another.

As God’s daughter He considers you precious, worthy, and valuable. Do you see yourself that way? Is you value and worth found in running yourself ragged? Or always saying “yes?” Absolutely not! It’s a balance that comes from taking care of yourself mentally, spiritually, emotionally and physically. While serving others out of the overflow of your heart. So find ways and take some time each day to show a little bit of love to yourself.

Friday, December 11, 2020

Jesus and Java

 God does His work on this earth with ordinary women (like you and me) in our ordinary-everyday situations. And He can take an ordinary situation, with ordinary women, kick it up a notch and do some extraordinary things.

Not a day goes by that we're not in need of God's grace and peace. Every morning we need His Spirit to fill us again, to strengthen us for what's ahead. Every day we need a fresh word that He speaks to our hearts, to help keep our focus on what's more important. Trying to run this race of life without Jesus will do nothing but drain us dry.

And the week can be crazy believe me with deadlines and schedules trying to get everything done before the weekend. And we can sometimes lose focus of what's most important. But even for those times... His grace is there. He waits for us. His patience and His peace never run dry.

Jesus covers our past, secures our future and gives us all that we need for this day too. He promises that as we come to Him, and allow His truths to nourish and saturate our lives, we will be satisfied. We will have all that we need to live abundantly and freely in this life. So grab that cup of Java girlfriend and a whole lot of Jesus and make today an amazing day.

Sunday, December 6, 2020

The Road to Freedom: Surviving Depression

 Another sleepless night, no desire to get out of the bed and get breakfast made before I had to be out the door to get my daughters to school, get myself to school and then to work after class. This had been the story of my life for the last 6 months, it was like Groundhog Day or being on a hamster wheel that I just couldn’t get off of. 

I knew something was wrong and I knew I didn’t want this to be life forever but I had no desire to put forth the effort for change and I didn’t even know where to begin if I did. I was battling with depression and didn’t know how to cope with everything in my life. Rewind to six months prior: I was in college, working a full time job, balancing home, school, and work life pretty successfully I thought. But on October 21, 2003 things changed drastically. I lost my significant other in a tragic event, and was now a 21 year old single parent trying to figure out how to do life, manage time and keep it all together. The truth is I couldn’t. Everything that made sense before,  was now foreign and a challenge to figure out.

Fast forward six months to where I’m still trying to get off of this hamster wheel. I was sad all the time, I didn’t sleep, didn’t eat, I lost a lot of weight and was down to 102 pounds. When I didn’t have to be in class, at work or being mommy to my daughters I spent most nights just crying. I needed something and that something ultimately was Jesus!

See God wants to help us as His daughters to live free from depression. He wants to fill us with His joy, hope and expectation of good things for our lives. Trust me if you are battling with depression right now, it’s not an overnight process. It took a lot of prayer, time, effort, energy and vulnerability to get to a place of freedom, joy and peace. But I had to take the first step and make a decision. I know as Christians we shy away from the subject or even the idea of depression. We sometimes forget our sisters in Christ are human just like us. Created by God with feelings and emotions and deal with a plethora of challenges at times in life. 

Depression is real and God desires you as his daughter to be whole: that’s all 3 parts that make you up: your body, spirit and soul. Greater is He that is in you, then he that is in the world (1John 4:4) The Great One is inside of you and that is the difference between you and the world. You have a relationship with the One that can heal and restore you. Now I understand that you might not feel like it today and that’s okay… But just know when you are ready to make the decision, God will be there to see you through and help you pick up the pieces and reclaim your purpose. 

You are God’s beloved daughter. You were created with dignity and strength. You are beautiful , fierce and special. You have purpose, influence and a future. You are an overcomer and depression does not have to rule your life. NO MATTER what you are going through, God is always willing and ready to help you get through. He will take your pain and turn it into something great. 

You are not alone girlfriend and if you are experiencing depression or feel you may be then I encourage you to reach out to a counselor, therapist or social worker. If that seems intimidating then reach out and talk with a friend, pastor or family member you can be honest and vulnerable with. 

I have chosen you and have not cast you away: Fear not, for I am with you; be not dismayed, for I am your God. I will strengthen you, yes, I will help you, I will uphold you with My righteous right hand. (Isaiah 41:9b-10) Remember you are not alone and you are loved. 💋

Sunday, November 29, 2020


What or who defines you? Do you want to be defined by the world, pop culture or social media? Or do you want be defined by God? As young ladies and women we can allow ourselves to get caught up in the world around us; what’s hip, cool or even the “in” thing. We try to emulate what we see on tv, in magazines and/or celebrities we follow. But God not only designed you for a unique purpose but to be uniquely you. Following trends I promise will leave you empty, but following God will never leave you empty but fulfilled. “For we are God’s handiwork, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do.” (Ephesians 2:10) Not only is a “God-defined” woman made by the Creator Himself, but He already has prepared a way for you to walk in. 

The verb define according to Webster’s Dictionary means to make up or establish the character of. How exhausting to try and keep up with social trends and take it one step further and try to be defined by those social trends too. I’m sure you’ve heard of the ever-present need to “Keep Up with the Joneses.” Well the problem with this is that there is no Jones family to keep up with. You can't keep up with an existential standard that doesn't exist and women will find themselves much like a hamster running on the wheel of life, chasing some impossible standard, that will leave them forever going in circles. Social trends change, pop culture changes, people even change. But God does not change, “Jesus Christ is the same yesterday, today, and forever.” (Hebrews 13:8)

A God-defined woman does not need anyone to prove her worth. She laughs without fear of the future. She forgives easily. She speaks with wisdom and faithful instruction is on her tongue. She is clothed with strength and dignity. This is who you are as a young lady or woman when you allow God to define you and not the world. It is who you are in Christ. It is the way He chooses to see you, even when you don’t feel this way. If you lose faith today, I want you to know that you are not defined by people’s opinions, by social trends, pop culture or even your own opinion. You worth is far more than rubies because of the One person who died in your place to win your heart. 

Friday, July 17, 2020

Woman of worth

It's important as women to live our truth but in that we must not use our past as a crutch. Your past, your trials, your truth, your story... makes you uniquely you and brings hope to other women that they too can rise above situations, obstacles and people. So be unapologetic of who you are, if who you are is a woman of purpose, inspiration and worth. Because you are NOT broken, you are just a beautiful mosaic of battles you've won.