The Attitude Check

Philippians 2:3 – “Let nothing be done through strife or vainglory; but in lowliness of mind let each esteem other better than themselves.”

Jesus Christ is love. If we truly want to reflect Him, we will be what He is. We will never be as perfect, but we can try! Christ put others before Himself. The scripture above is a reminder that He desires us to uplift, encourage, and even put the needs of others before our own.

Ephesians 4:31-21 – “Let all bitterness, and wrath, and anger, and clamour, and evil speaking, be put away from you, with all malice: And be ye kind one to another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, even as God for Christ’s sake hath forgiven you.

‘But, Charity- I’m just sassy. I’m just sarcastic. I’m just real.’, you may say. But, scripture clearly says that if your attitude reflects bitterness, wrath, anger, clamour (aggressiveness), or evil speaking (gossiping)- you’re doing it wrong. God does not want that a part of your “personality” or nature.

Proverbs 29:11 – “A fool uttereth all his mind: but a wise man keepeth it in till afterwards.”

It is not wise to say everything that comes to mind. You must practice self-control and maintain your emotions and temper. Before you speak, you need to contemplate on it and ask yourself- “would God approve of what I am about to say?” If you feel it is necessary to say what is on your mind, the verse says keep it in until afterwards. So, after dwelling on it and seeing if it would be beneficial to share… then you may speak at the appropriate time.

Ephesians 4:14-15 – “ That we henceforth be no more children, tossed to and fro, and carried about with every wind of doctrine, by the sleight of men, and cunning craftiness, whereby they lie in wait to deceive; But speaking the truth in love, may grow up into him in all things, which is the head, even Christ:”

It’s good to be honest and speak truth, but scripture says to do it in love. If one of my friends come up to me and asks, “Do you like this dress?”, and I think it’s the most hideous thing I’ve ever seen, I will give her truth IN LOVE. I will word myself in a way to not hurt her feelings but be honest in that I am not a fan of the dress.

Mark 3:25 – “And if a house be divided against itself, that house cannot stand.”

Don’t let a bad attitude and an unchecked spirit divide the Kingdom. Division, offense, and “drama” amongst the people in church displeases the Lord (1 Corinthians 1:10-11).  God is coming so soon. We do not have time to get caught up in bad feelings, gossip, jealousy, and judgment. His Kingdom is more important that all of that!

No one is exempt from an attitude check! Even I have to self-reflect from time to time and make sure that my frustration or anger doesn’t get the best of me, especially in how I treat others. We must check our attitudes and see if there is any area in us that isn’t truly reflecting Christ. And if there is, we mustn’t be afraid to acknowledge it and work on changing it. As I continue to work on myself, I also encourage you to not forget your daily Attitude Check.

Charity Huba

Remember Your Roots

Dear Fellow Apostolic Girl,

Remember your roots. When you look at a statement such as this, you may think that I am referring to remembering your family tree and heritage. But in this case, I am referring to the roots that have sustained us and built us up from our personal pasts and experiences. The roots that grew as a result of your testimony.

Often times, we look at our past, and the mistakes we’ve made, or what we’ve been through, and try to bury them away. We want to hide from those feelings so we push them away from us. Many times, we were put through a time of trial or testing and in that time, we learned some hard life lessons, or grew from hard experiences where we had to learn to trust on the Lord. For those of you who may be going through something like that right now, let me encourage you that there is a bigger picture that goes beyond what we can see or comprehend. Proverbs 3:5-6 says “Trust in the Lord with all thine heart; and lean not unto thine own understanding. In all thy ways acknowledge him, and he shall direct thy paths.”

We often use the scripture from Jeremiah 29:11 “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 a hope and a future.” Let’s look at that scripture in a different translation to give more perspective. “For I know that thoughts that I think towards you, declares the Lord. Thoughts to prosper you and not to harm you, thoughts to give you a hope and a future.” The Lord can map out our lives according to His specific will, for each moment in time. No matter how much He has done this, He will never force you to follow His will, so… when we step outside the will of the Lord, we then take control of our own lives, and may get caught up in something that was not planned for our lives. BUT the mercy and grace of the Lord is never-ending and never-failing. Praise God! There is always room for another chance for us to fall back in line with the will of the Lord. And when we do, the result is a testimony of what the Lord brought you out from.

Victor Jackson said this, “God factors your failures into your future.” What an incredibly true and encouraging statement. As a child, I was always told that “God uses the bad things that happen, for good.” And it is true. He takes those experiences and trials we’ve been through and uses them to reach others. Sometimes, I think to myself that the Lord may have put me through something for the sole purpose of being able to reach others who are going through the same thing. The important thing to realize, is that no matter the mistakes you’ve made, the trials you’ve suffered, God can and will use it as a testament of where He has brought you from, and it then becomes your job to share with others as the Lord leads. Our testimonies should be used as an encouragement to those around us. They give us opportunities to reach and relate to people we would have never related to before. Testimonies glorify God and are a constant reminder of His grace, mercy, and mighty works.

I challenge you to share your testimony, and let it be a constant reminder of who God has called you to be, and where you would be without His love. I challenge you not to hide from your past, but to share your experiences with those who are in need of hope, encouragement, advice, and love. Most importantly Sisters, I challenge you to trust in the Lord, and let Him direct you.

Bethany Marsh

 

Celebrate Love

Valentine’s Day is a day of celebration for love and the only way to enjoy it is you must have a boyfriend! Wrong! Yes, this day is a celebration of love but it is not just between a boy and a girl. It is about spending time with your loved ones like your friends and family. As a single young lady, it was hard for me to be “single.” I would always joke with my friends that I was on a record setting “single” streak; Single September, Only Me October, No Man November, Don’t Date December, Just Me January, and Forever Alone February. This joke made for some great laughs but there was always this discouraging voice in my heard declaring that I was truly forever alone. Would there ever be someone I could love during this holiday? I would see couples together and roll my eyes because I was again reminded that I was single. I then began to question if I should even celebrate Valentine’s Day.

The year it all changed for me was when God gave me the revelation that all my other girl friends were also single and it was not because of anything we had done wrong – it was because we were not in that season of our lives. God answered my question and said, “I have given you numerous friends and family to love. Do not miss out on this time with them just because the world deems this a ‘couples’ holiday.” Ever since that moment, I treat Valentine’s Day like I do any other holiday and I make sure to be surrounded by family and friends that I love and who love me. I chose to not wallow in self-pity (I can be very dramatic sometimes) and instead celebrate with all my friends!

God will place people in our paths for us to love and to be loved in return. God has shown us this promise – when He brought together David and Jonathan in 1 Samuel – of always bringing special people in our lives at the moment we need them. So instead of looking at this holiday as a reminder that you are “single” like I did,  learn how to show God’s love to all those around you. And if you are reading this but you are not single, it is always a good reminder to remember all your friends and family that might want to share your love on this special red and pink holiday!


Valentine’s Day is perhaps my most favorite holiday besides Christmas! I am a romantic at heart and am very sappy when participating in the festivities. I want to share with you a couple things that always brighten up my Valentine’s Day!

First, we all know that a great outfit can set our entire mood throughout the day (FACTS. HA!). For every holiday I always dress in festive colors and for this holiday, anything pink or red goes! Here, I have paired a red Zara shirt with a Target jean skirt and a pink purse from TJ Maxx. This is a simple but festive outfit to run around town in or have a Valentine’s Day brunch with my girls!

PICTURE ONE

Another tradition I enjoy is getting my friends Valentine’s cards. You can buy these Valentine cards (or others like these) at TJ Maxx for a reasonable price. These specific ones are the brand “Meri & Meri” and cost only $7.99. Valentine’s Cards are simple but perfect to let all your friends and family know you were thinking of them!

PICTURE TWO

I pray you enjoy this Valentine’s Day with all those you love and who love you! Please share some great ideas you do for Valentine’s Day in the comments below.

 

Alisha Eason

Enjoy Everything

To give some background on what this phrase means to me, this phrase of ‘Enjoy Everything’ became a sort of motto for both my family when, 8 years ago, my 19 year old cousin was killed by a drunk driver in a hit and run. In his pocket there was a To-Do list for the next day, one thing to do was pay a ticket and there were a few other things. But, the last thing on his list was simply Enjoy Everything. In hindsight, this phrase and the simple yet powerful reminder it provides has been applicable to my entire life.

This sentiment of “Enjoy Everything” can be applied to the various situations we all have gone through and will go through. Good or bad.
As I prepared this, I sat down and read Ecclesiastes; most people are familiar with Chapter 3, the first verse states-

“There is a time for everything, and a season for every activity under the heavens”.
The chapter continues and goes through different situations and conflicts. I won’t go through all of them, but I definitely encourage you all to read Ecclesiastes. It only takes about 10 minutes, and it is so applicable- at least for me, to this season- and it serves as such a great reminder on perspective.

Each season and moment in our lives has rewards, heart breaks, and challenges. I think, for those in this college season in our lives, we can think of something that fits each of those categories. Maybe the reward of A’cing an exam or utilizing a student discount. Maybe the heart break of failing a class or being away from your family. For those in a season of Middle or High School- maybe the reward of winning a sports game or making a team. Maybe it’s the heartbreak of losing friends who you thought would be with you forever.

Obviously, there are worse things and I am sure each one of us has been through our own personal seasons of heart break, of challenges, and of rewards. But, I want to encourage us to enjoy everything in every season. Even if that season is watching as doctors turn off life support. Even if that season is burying someone you love. Even if that season is losing everything you have.

I know I sound crazy- I am telling you to enjoy things that break your heart into a million pieces and that change your life. But, here’s the thing- God is working for our good, always. My dad, and I am sure you have heard this if you have been to church or around Christians, always says, “God is good, All the time”. He is good and He is working for our good. When we are in the thick of the situation, of the challenge, it is hard to see the good and it is hard to imagine there could be anything good about it. But, God.
God sees the big picture, God is shaping us; He is molding us into who we are destined to be. When God breaks us, He is still there- He is holding us and crying with us, His heart breaks with ours. Then, in His perfect timing, He picks us up and makes us into something even better. In Ecclesiastes, it also says that a sad face does good for the heart.

We can trust Him. Why? Because we have a promise, His promise.
His promise in Romans 8:28, that He will make something good out of the storms that bring devastation in our lives.
His promise in Isiah 66:9, that He will not cause pain without allowing something new to be born.
His promise in Jeremiah 33:6, to heal us and give us abundant peace and security.
He is working for our good, always.

I don’t know if any of you can relate to this but, a lot of times I find myself neglecting the season I am in, planning and dreaming for the future, thinking once I get there I will be happy, content, and can finally enjoy my life. But we shouldn’t be waiting to enjoy the next season, we should enjoy the one we are in.
As much as we don’t like to think about death and our lives coming to an end, at least I don’t; we only have a certain amount of time on the earth to make a difference and to live our earthly lives. Some people have a longer time, some shorter. When we are laying on our death bed at the end of our lives we won’t have a “next season” to plan and wait to enjoy- besides Heaven of course.

Each new challenge, each heart break is a chance for us to grow and to let God do what He wants in us and through us. Throughout my life, growing up, I never, ever thought what I have gone through to be part of my testimony and may be able to help someone else one day. I wouldn’t change a thing about my life or experiences.

Enjoying everything takes faith. Faith doesn’t mean everything will be great, it’s believing God knows what He is doing even when. He has our back, He promised and He can’t break His promises.
This ride of life may be bumpy, but we can have peace in the fact that He is working for our good.

sabrina hope

 

It Takes Time

Remember when you were a kid and you would get a cut and want it to go away as soon as possible? So, you’d pick at it or try to cover it with a band aid. Your parents would get on to you and say that you’re just making it worse or you’re just making it heal slower. Well, they were right.

The more you try to pick on your wounds the more it will take longer to heal. Covering it with a band aid won’t help either because no wound heals overnight. They say that time heals all wounds. It’s true.  You see, healing does take time. It doesn’t have a timeline.  But what does this word “healing” actually mean? According to Google, it means, “the process of making or becoming sound or healthy again.” So now the question is, how long does someone have to wait until they can finally say “I’m healed”?

Healing happens over time. It’s something that cannot be rushed. It’s an everyday process. You got to be patient with yourself and push yourself to be brave enough to heal. Healing is hard and I will tell you this, there will be days where your mind will be full of questions and you will feel desperate for answers that do not exist. There will be moments where all hope is lost and you will feel like you have not made any progress. Healing is messy and can get ugly. Sometimes it can be breaking and painful. But, there will also be days when you feel free and hopeful, even when you thought you had no hope left. There will be moments where you will feel supported and loved by the people around you and that healing won’t be too far away. And those moments are the ones you should hold on to.

Healing also happens when you’re alone at night or when you’re sitting in your car at a red light and suddenly you remember everything that hurts, and it feels like you’re getting stabbed in the chest repeatedly. Now your whole body just feels heavy, your heart and everything inside you hurts. Because, healing is pain, but it is also triumph. To be honest, you will always scar, but it will serve as a reminder that you made it!

The bible says  For I reckon that the sufferings of this present time are not worthy to be compared with the glory which shall be revealed in us.” -Romans 8:18

It takes time. It takes pain. It takes hopelessness. It is not an easy process. But, healing will come. And when this pain is over, the joy that He will bring in your life will be incomparable. He has a plan for your life. God brought you this far and He will get you through.

So this New Year, I pray for everyone that’s in the process of healing. Don’t give up on yourself! Keep pushing. Give your broken pieces to the Healer. Little by little, every day, as healing slowly finds its way to you and as your wounds become scars which will be proof of how gracefully you healed, your heart will be full of joy, hope and love. You will be better than okay.

francesca vitug

Called to Be Hungry

God does not call the fed. God does not call those who are full. God calls those to the table who have a hunger to serve. We are not mighty. We do not have power because money, fame, talent, and etc. God calls those who bow to him. He calls us when we lay down those worldly powers and humble ourselves to his throne. We are called to be hungry for more of Him. Call unto His name and He will bless you abundantly!

You can never do enough for the kingdom because God always has more for you. Think of it as this way. We eat everyday because if we don’t, we’ll be hungry. So, we fill up until we’re full. But, we’re never completely full because we eat everyday. That’s what God is calling us to do everyday! To be fed in His Word. To be hungry for His love and wisdom daily.

Proverbs 25:21 KJV says, “If thine enemy be hungry, give him bread to eat; and if he be thirsty, give him water to drink.”

He even called you to bless and feed your enemies this truth. So answer the call. If you fill your free time with social media or games, then you’re not fulfilling your call. If you fill yourself up with the wrong thing, you’ll find yourself still hungry, still hurting, still worrying, and still filling up with the wrong things. So stop and answer the call. God has called the hungry. And we all have a seat at the table.

As this new year starts, I am reflecting on the wisdom God has given me. I am very blessed for my family and friends and church that God has placed in my life. 2018 will always hold a place in my heart because it’s the year I answered the call to be hungry for more. As we see in Isaiah 65:13 KJV, it says, “Therefore thus saith the Lord GOD, Behold, my servants shall eat, but ye shall be hungry: behold, my servants shall drink, but ye shall be thirsty: behold, my servants shall rejoice, but ye shall be ashamed.”

I find myself feeling empty some days. Not knowing why I serve the God I serve. But, when I turn to His word and pray at night, all that shame and guilt goes away. All because, I am called to be hungry.

Check out Chelsea’s personal blog: (Gracefully Made)

chelsea hockensmith

 

Becoming An Auntie

January of 2019, I will be an aunt for the very first time. It seems surreal to imagine that my sister, so young and still blossoming, is about to produce a little human that will forever change her parents’ lives, our family’s lives, and most definitely mine.

We three girls dreamed of that day. We would talk about it, joke about it, and even plan for it (typical girls that had their weddings planned at age eight). Now, it’s actually happening. It kind of terrifies me because I almost feel caught off-guard and unprepared after all these years knowing that one day this would come.

Am I going to be a good aunt? Or the crazy aunt you try to avoid at family gatherings? Will I be a good example, someone she will want to model her life after? Will I be proud of who I am and what I represent to her? Scary thoughts…

I think Ella being born in January, the start of a new year, is perfect. New Year’s tend to be the time everyone finally does some self-reflection. It’s the time when people attempt to eat healthier, be wiser with money, accomplish dreams they have yet touched, and grow closer to God.

I am honestly self-reflecting myself and it’s kind of bothersome. I really am not where I want to be and it’s no one’s fault except mine. Although I’m not ashamed of my current situation, I know I could be and do better! Spiritually, physically, financially, occupationally, and so on. It’s time to live the life I really want to be living and be what I really wish I could be.

With God, all things are possible. No, I am not perfect and I know I will hit road blocks on my way to my dreams and goals, but Jesus is always in control. He simply asks that we do our best and never stop trying.

“And whatsoever ye do, do it heartily, as to the Lord, and not unto men”

-Colossians 3:23

“Whatsoever thy hand findeth to do, do [it] with thy might; for [there is] no work, nor device, nor knowledge, nor wisdom, in the grave, whither thou goest.”

-Ecclesiastes 9:10

I have an easy going nature and a care-free personality. But, I am feeling a sense of urgency! I pray that this blog inspires you to feel the same way. Life is so precious, and is promised to no one. Take advantage of every day and use it in pursuit to be greater and better! Spirituality is most important and then following that, your witness, your relationships, education, and occupation.

May your 2019 be blessed and prosperous! I believe in you, ladies. More importantly, so does God. He’s excited to see what you do with this new year!

blog highlight charity