A little encouragement…

Romans 8:18 (KJV)

18 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.

Amplified Bible (AMP)

18 [But what of that?] For I consider that the sufferings of this present time (this present life) are not worth being compared with the glory that is about to be revealed to us and in us and [a]for us and [b]conferred on us!

Have you ever cried out to God because you felt like the sacrifices you’re making are not producing the results you’re feeling it should?

Have you ever wondered why those that do nothing, or who lie cheat and steal, are seemingly getting the upper hand OR everything you’re sacrificing for?

Are you ever tempted to give up because things aren’t working the way you think they should?

Well- I’d like to be the first to welcome you to the club.

Have a seat.

Thanks Pinterest

Right Here….Looks comfy doesn’t it?

Let’s talk TRUTH for a moment.

If you are anything like me, when you begin putting in work on a project, a goal, in the gym or with your spiritual life (or anything at all for that matter) you are HYPE. You’re full of focus, faith, energy, vigor, and zeal! You cannot wait to see the results. Often times, those results don’t come as quickly as we hoped. Sometimes days….weeks…months…years..AND EVEN decades of us “putting in work” pass and still….

No results.

No progress.

NOT-A-THING .

And as that time goes by our faith wavers, our focus blurs, our energy fades, vigor is-well- nonexistent, and zeal turns to disdained irritability.

AND we think….

“Why am I doing all of this work if it’s amounting to

N-O-T-H-I-N-G?! FORGET THIS!”

To work hard and see no results, produces anger, frustration, and even bitterness. Bitterness towards our efforts, ourselves, others, and even towards the Lord. It wears us down. It wrecks our faith. It even causes us to question our purpose and self-worth.

That’s a fact. It’s truth. It’s biblical! Proverbs 13:12 says this:

Hope deferred maketh the heart sick: but when the desire cometh, it is a tree of life.

Right about now you’re probably thinking “GOODNESS…this post was supposed to encourage me!”

Well I have some GOOD NEWS!

The good news is…I have a little more truth for you.

God promises in his word that we will indeed reap harvest comparable to what we have sewn. Galatians 6:7 says

Be not deceived; God is not mocked: for whatsoever a man soweth, that shall he also reap.

One thing I know is that God is faithful to his word. We may not see it. We may not feel it. But, one day in this world AND in the world to come (Mark 10:29-30), we will see the results of what we have worked so hard for. The glory will be revealed to us, in us, for us, and it will be conferred on us.

Stand in faith and expectancy. Keep praying. Keep moving. Keep working. Keep pressing. Keep praising.

Through some encouragement from one of my sweet friends in DC (I’m still reading that email you sent me…over and over!), I spent some time this morning writing down 3 things I REALLY need the Lord to do in/for me. After I did that, I wrote down three prayers thanking Him for doing those things and I prayed that those things would be used to benefit His kingdom and bring Him glory. I will read over those 3 things everyday until it comes to pass!

Now, I charge you to take that step of faith with me. Write down three things you need the Lord to do in/for you. THEN write down three prayers thanking Him for those blessings and pray that those very things would bring glory to His kingdom.Do it daily until it happens!

Mark my words (and yours). It won’t be much longer.

And when it happens please, be sure to let me know!

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Maybe….just maybe we should keep our mouths shut?

Exodus 14:13-14 Amplified Bible (AMP)

13 Moses told the people, Fear not; stand still (firm, confident, undismayed) and see the salvation of the Lord which He will work for you today. For the Egyptians you have seen today you shall never see again.

14 The Lord will fight for you, and you shall hold your peace and remain at rest.

 

Life can throw many curve balls.

Sooooo many things we expect to go well don’t.

Great plans yield horrible results.

We are injustice and slighted.

People we trust betray us.

Our names are run through the mud for no conceivable reason.

Our actions are misinterpreted and our words are taken out of context.

 

AND

 

BOY

 

DOES

 

THIS

 

HURT

 

Especially when we have tried our best and worked our hardest.

Especially when our intentions are honorable.

We meant no wrong.

We meant no harm.

I mean we really, really meant well.

 

We were actually only doing what was just AND what was right.

 

Why can’t people understand this?

 

As a result of feeling disenfranchised, we work hard to try to make wrongs right. We jump through hoops to make others understand that we meant no harm, that our intentions were pure, and that they have things all wrong.

 

Even so, at times, it seems like the harder we try the worse things seem to get.

 

They blow up in our faces….

 

AND

 

BOY

 

DOES

 

THIS

 

REALLY

 

REALLY

 

HURT

 

IN these times

 

SOMETIMES….. it’s best to keep our mouths shut (and our hearts open to God in prayer).

 

Sometimes our words just add fuel to the fire.

 

Moreover, we often bring to a halt, our blessings and progress in life when we continuously attempt to fight our own battles. Maybe just maybe God is trying to teach us something through this situation. It may be something you may need to be mindful of personally (your mindset, your approach, your perspective). It may be something about the relationships involved (is this a person you need to be in relationship with). 

When we fail to take every need to God in prayer we simultaneously fail in solving the problem by taking matters into our own hands.

The Lord knows what we have done (he also knows what others have done). He knows our intentions and our hearts.

HE knows who we are, even if others fail to see it.

If you are in a situation where it seems that you can’t win and you have done your best, leave it at that. That’s really all you can do.

 

Leave God space to do what he’s longing to do. Let this situation teach you what it was meant to teach you. TAKE HEED to the situation’s advice. Learn the valuable lessons from this. Ultimately, let God fight your battles.

I promise you that no injustice will go unnoticed. 

HE keeps record of it all.

He will fight for you.

You need only to be still. (SO hard I know)

 

Take a moment right now to pray and meditate. Pray for wisdom and understanding. Pray for peace (trust me, you’ll need it…because sometimes you’ll want to tell people about themselves lol). Even so, ask forgiveness for taking matters into your own hands.

 

THEN..

 

Sit back, relax, and watch God work on your behalf. 

IMG_20140703_121418_resized

Whose business are you minding?

In all sincerity, I realize that I get thrown off track in life A LOT, because I’m not doing one simple thing…minding my business.

Not in the being a nosey busy body kind of minding my business but, the “look at how great others appear to have it”, or “look how awesome they look”,  ORRRRR look “how well things are going for them”. You know, the oh-so common, “woe is me my life sucks their life is so great” type of not minding my business?

My question to you (and to me) today is: Whose business are you minding?

As people, we have the tendency to look at others and measure our lives by their life’s standard.

Believe me I spent my whole graduate career researching Leon Festinger’s “social comparison theory” and I’ve spent most of my life comparing myself to someone else. It happens. It’s common.  We do it more than we realize or care to admit.

We see how great things are for others and wonder: “Why am I the only one riding the ‘struggle bus’ ?!”

However, we seldom take into consideration that we are only privy to a portion of other’s lives. ONLY the portion, mind you that they often carefully, present to us. You know the picture perfect social media image we look at with jealous disgust? Yep. That one!

One of my new favorite quotes says:

Image

We look at the perfectly constructed image others share with us, compare our life to theirs, and struggle with UNNECESSARY insecurity and self-doubt.

Truth is, EVERYONE whether they will admit it or not, is riding their own “struggle bus”. Their struggle isn’t the same as yours BUT in some way they are dealing with something!

Comparison is a slippery slope. Constantly comparing ourselves to others is emotionally, mentally, and spiritually (and every other “lly”) taxing and detrimental.

We get ourselves in a LOT of trouble trying to be, do things, say things, buy things, or go places we were never intended, by God, to be, do, say, buy, or go. All because, we are comparing our walks with the walks of others.

The word of God tells us, clearly, that this process is unwise and ultimately leads us to behave unwisely.  2 Corinthians 10:12-13 (AMP)  says:

12 Not that we [have the audacity to] venture to class or [even to] compare ourselves with some who exalt and furnish testimonials for themselves! However, when they measure themselves with themselves and compare themselves with one another, they are without understanding and behave unwisely.

13 We, on the other hand, will not boast beyond our legitimate province and proper limit, but will keep within the limits [of our commission which] God has allotted us as our measuring line and which reaches and includes even you.

Plain and simple, the interpretation in my head says that we should not compare ourselves to ANYONE point blank. Period.

We are who we are by God’s grace and  we should keep in the limits that God has allotted to us. We are to use  His standard as a measuring line. Not someone else’s. Often, not even ours but, HIS.

The challenge: Take a moment to “check yourself”. How many times have you compared yourself to someone else, today? Write it down and read it to yourself.

Think about…

Why you’re making these comparisons?

It’s almost a “sub conscious” reaction. Right?

How do we stop this?

Here’s my suggestion get a notebook! In it, make a list of  things the word of God says about you and what you should be.

Write down things you do well, goals you’ve accomplished, prayers that have been answered etc! Write down every great thing about you and your life. If you need to, solicit help!

Pray and ask God what he expects of you. Make a list of those things.

Begin comparing yourself to that measurement. If you see a need for change, set goals and work on improving yourself.

In times of self-doubt, insecurity, and seasons of feeling worthless, go back to that list!

In the coming hours, days, and weeks I will be praying that God would continue to reveal to me, and to you, what measuring line he desires us to compare ourselves to so that we may walk in both destiny and fulfillment.

Live it up,

Sass with Sensibility ❤

 

 

The fulfillment of life

Lately I’ve been on a search to live a more fulfilled life. You know? I want to get up in the morning with purpose and to go to bed knowing that I have accomplished that purpose…or at least I’ve moved one step closer to it.

I want to hear the voice of the Lord more clearly and walk in his purpose fully (because fulfillment is found in Jesus right?).

I don’t want to spend time focusing on what I’ve lost, what I don’t have or, what I may be missing out on. I want to focus His plan for my life, right now.

Not too long ago I had a conversation with one of my friends Shannon. Typically, Shannon calls me at my office early in the morning because one, she knows I get to work at the crack of dawn and two, because she says, ” I want to hear your voice!”. These early am conversations are always full of laughter, complete randomness, and often, absolutely make my day.

This specific conversation was about getting back to using our talents and abilities to fulfill purpose and to live a more fulfilled live. She challenged me to list things that I am good and love to do. The list was to serve as the beginning of finding fulfillment.

When I thought of it, I spent my 28th birthday making a list of things I felt I needed to do this next year to bring about more fulfillment and “life”, in my life. I totally forgot about that list until now!

After some brainstorming, and petitioning of her help, I came up with this list:

  1. Teaching/Speaking
  2. Writing
  3.  Entertaining, Event Planning & Coordinating
  4. Prayer (specifically intercessory prayer)
  5. Now this one really doesn’t have a name lol but I am very resourceful. I can take whatever I have and typically make whatever I need out of it. I guess you’d call it being crafty?
  6. Traveling..Oh I can sure plan a great, inexpensive trip!
  7. Fashion, in respect to knowing what looks good together (typically lol) and dressing to fit ones body.
  8. Singing/Worshiping I’m not the best singer in the world by any stretch of the imagination LOL but I am a worshiper. I love love, love, a good worship service whether I’m leading it or singing from the congregation.
  9. This one doesn’t have a name either lol but, I am definitely a people person! It’s rare that I meet a stranger. I have an interesting ability to connect with people and to bring people who normally wouldn’t be together, together.

(the list will continue to grow but right now, this is what I’ve got)

Great a list…ummmm….Now how in the world do I use these to live a more fulfilled life?

That’s what I’m going to figure out! 🙂 My plan is to spend the coming weeks intentionally living in purpose.

Since this list is a mix of both the “spiritual” and the “natural”, I thought I’d start this journey to fulfillment by combining the two!

I will be spending the next couple of weeks blogging (and possibly vlogging), weekly (or more often) about this journey and sharing it with you! My plan is to include some random thoughts (that are often hilarious and inspired by my friend Wendy LOL), fashion posts, some real-life real-talk devotionals, a lot of sass, and even a little sensibility.

You’re more than welcome to join me! Subscribe to the blog and buckle up! This should be a fun ride!

Live it up,

Sass with Sensibility

Purpose

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

8 Reasons Why I’ve Chosen To Keep My Cookie In The Jar

As much as I try to avoid the topic for fear of looking crazy, I haven’t been able to get wanting to share my thoughts on why I’ve chosen not to have premarital sex off my brain for weeks.

From the moment I had a procedure done last year, where I had to ingest radio active eggs to test the rate of digestion of my stomach (yeah another topic for another day lol), I’ve wanted to write this blog post.

Why did a procedure make you want to write a blog  post about premarital sex? I’m glad you asked!

As with any test where radioactive waves or x-rays are involved  there are a series of questions you must answer right to have the procedure done… There are a whole set of them where you have to verify you don’t have any medical conditions that would interfere with the testing AND (for the ladies) you MUST verify that you aren’t pregnant.  Before my gastric emptying study I had to go through those two sets of questions. After the first set all was well…. I passed! THHHennnn we got the the pregnancy ones.

Now, I’m use to going to the “lady doctor” (and other doctors) and having to answer the “Are you pregnant or is there any chance you can be pregnant?” questions. I’m use to getting the crazy looks  when I say”No I’m not pregnant and I’m 100% sure I’m not “. I’m use to the side eye “Why?”…THEN having to have a 10 minute conversation about the reasons behind me choosing not to have sex before marriage. So after the converstation about “why the choice”, this time around, the tech looked at me, looked at the form, and looked back at me in shock. She said “Oh wow. Well there’s no spot on the form for not being sexually active being a reason you’re sure you are not pregnant!”.

You read that right. There was NO spot on the form where you could check “I know I’m not pregnant because, I’m not sexually active”. I had to write it in. By hand. I thought “WHAT?! Am I a unicorn?! Is it this rare to not be giving up the cookie?! (Steve Harvey reference lol). *Side Eye* Must be. BUT NEVER have I not seen an “I’m not sexually active”  box  on a medical form. Maybe I AM a unicorn. I’m ok with it. Unicorns are fabulous and so am I lol

So in light of the situation I thought I’d share my reasons for choosing to wait until marriage to have sex. I would love to tell you that my reasons for waiting to have sex until marriage are solely biblical, and although heavily influenced by biblical principles, they are not. Majority of them are really…. very practical.

So why have I decided to wait?

1. My Mom….

She kinda put the fear of her in me. Yeah I’m kinda scared of my Mom. She was one hundred percent honest with us growing up. I distinctly remember her telling my sister and I “If you have a baby I am not raising it. I will love you. I will love your baby but I am not raising it. You will raise it.” <- That was all the warning I needed.

My Mom had my sister and I at a young age and never really got to do what she wanted to do with her life. My Mom is all about giving whatever you are 100% of you. So she’s spent most of her life fully dedicated to raising responsible, independent, fearless, accomplished black women.Both of my sister and I have Masters degrees and great jobs. I credit my mom for that. No, my Mom doesn’t regret having us nor did she tell us children end your life lol She was real with us and pushed us to accomplish our goals and dreams before having unprotected sex (or sex period) which couuulllddd lead to having children.

OHHHHHHH and the physical/biological 411 of what really happens when people “get busy”. YEP she gave us that. What comes out of where? And he wants to put it where? Naahhh son. For a preteen hearing that was  ummm gross. So I decided then and there…I’ll wait…

2. I’m selfish….

Yep I’m selfish and I’m not willing share my body with anyone at this point. (I also have nakie-phobia which I’ll discuss at another time lol) I’m not ready to be fully vulnerable with someone at this moment in time. Yah know naked and unashamed? I’m noottt quiitee there yet. lol

Which leads me to my next points

3. I seriously haven’t met anyone worth ending the wait for…

No one worth being naked and unashamed with. Not one worth, as my favorite Christian comedian KevOnStage says”givin up the drawls” for. There have been opportunities but, none worth the trade off.

4.  I fully understand that my worth is not defined by men, sex, and children…

I’m sure sex is a lot of fun, marriage is great (and will happen for me..I’m not a shewoman man hater), AND babies SOOOO are adorable. However none of these are what defines me as a woman. It’s not about how many men I can have chasing me, or how many I’ve slept, who my husband is, or how many kids call me Mommy. Nope. My worth is found in HIM and in doing what He’s purposed for me in the season He’s purposed it.  My life is all about who God says I am and THAT is not predicated on how many times I give it up. I don’t need to give it up to feel like I’m enough. Shoot I’m phenomenal WITHOUT giving up the goodies!  Just imagine how blessed my future husband will be to have the WHOLE package. Dude better be praising God in advance for the blessing of me #word

5. From what I hear from my hilarious friends sex, for the first time, is not as glamorous OR COMFORTABLE as the movies depict.

Fun and pleasurable?…Eventually… lol I’m 100% sure of it. Glamorous? Eghh I’m not sure about that one at this point in life. I’ll tell ya when I get there.

Now  for this next set of reasons please don’t get me wrong I know that not all sexual encounters end with pregnancy. However I understand that birth control (and other random methods) are not 100% fool proof. I also know my track record: If people say it only happens to one out of a bazillion people it will happen to me.  For example this slow digestion thing referenced above…. typically happens in seniors…like senior citizens. I’m not even 30 yet!

I know I will be the one on three birth controls (exaggerating) using condoms, having sex when I’m not ovulating, I would still happen to get pregnant. Yeah, it would happen cause I’m me. Then I’d be prego with quads or something!

So here’s my next set of reason:

6. I’m selfish…

Oh yeah I said that already BUT this time it’s different. I am realllyyyy selfish and I’m not ready for children. Oh I loveeee babies! I have spent most of my life heavily involved in raising my family’s and friend’s little ones. IT IS  A JOYFUL process to have a little baby’s unending love… BUT maaannn it’s HARD WORK!  There’s something extremely joyful in babysitting, giving the kid chocolate (or tea in my nephew’s case lol), and sending them home to their Mom!!

At this moment, as a young UNMARRIED professional, I am not ready to be a Mom. Especially a single parent Mom…Let’s be real babies don’t make dudes stay.

For me, right now, developing into the woman I want to be and being a “dog Mom” is hard enough work lol. I love to travel (yes you can travel with kids but you can’t always pick up and go).

I want to eventually work a job that involves traveling, meeting new people, and exploring the world. I dream of one day meeting my husband in an airport LOL

I want to get my PhD one day.

I love to shop and I understand I don’t make enough money to pay bills, support my shopping habits, and care for a baby. Not at this moment.

Now for the more biblical reasons

7. I believe that abstaining from fornication is pleasing to Jesus…To me it’s that simple.

For scripture reference use 1 Corinthians 6: 9-11 18-20:, Hebrews 13:4, 1 Peter 1:6, & Mark 7:20-23

He’s said it may times in His word that the covenant of marriage is the only place where sex is honorable.

Jesus also admonishes us that our bodies are His temple and they are to be kept pure and holy. I want to be holy.

The bible also tells us to flee fornication and sexual immorality…I’m not sure about you but ummmm there’s probably trouble in something Jesus tells you to FLEE from.

Not one with unrepentant sin(s) will make it in to heaven… Adding fornication to the list of sins I already have to deal with overcoming???! It’s not worth the risk for me.

8. I want to honor my future husband by keeping my view unclouded…

It’s as simple as that. I don’t want to have to force my future husband to have to live up to the expectation of another man’s sexual performance. At this point I have NO one to compare him to. I want to keep it that way.

Additionally, I don’t want him to have to sift through years of meaningless sexual relationships to earn my love and trust.

Relationships are already hard.

Sex is complicated and right now at this moment; January 29th, 2014 9:28am. I’m not ready.

There you have it my 8, very personal reasons.

Until next time & xoxo,

Sass with Sensibility