What I learned about Jesus from a chicken

We have chickens, yes we are chicken people.

We converted an old playhouse to a coop and we receive about five eggs a day from our fluffy, feathered females. Our pets/breakfast makers have actually taught me a lot about Jesus… let me explain.

Jesus spoke in parables often. It was His way of making confusing things more simple. He keeps things on a third-grade level for us, and this is yet another reason why I am such a big fan of His.

One of the parables Jesus used most often (35 times to be exact) refers to you and me as sheep. It made sense to the 1st century Christians because many of them owned, or at least worked with
sheep. Fast forward to today.  Including myself, I know approximately zero people who own sheep.

I do, however, have chickens and in a lot of ways, I think the two are very similar. They both travel in flocks for safety, they both find trouble without a guide, and they both have an insatiable curiosity for what is on the other side of the fence.

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Our birds live at the equivalent of a chicken Ritz Carlton. They have an abundance of food, water, chicken friends, extracurricular activities, and ample free range space in our yard. Despite their chicken paradise, these less than brilliant animals always think we are holding out on them.

About a year ago, our favorite chicken, Lucy, (I am told we should have named her Teriyaki) learned how to get to the top of the neighbors eight-foot private fence. She would fly to the top, see the neighbor’s dog, get scared, and then come back down to safety. Despite our best efforts to keep her down and safe, she always found a way to perch on the top of the fence. Early one morning, either her curiosity got the best of her, she thought she could handle the dog, or perhaps she didn’t think at all. Regardless, she flew to the other side of the fence and became a puppy play toy until her death.

Lucy saw the threat of the dog and knew she was safe in our yard, yet she still thought she “knew better” and wanted to see what was on the other side of the fence.

If you think I’m about to compare chickens to you and me, you are correct.what chickens taught me about jesus

“When He saw the crowds, he had compassion for them, because they were harassed and helpless, like sheep without a shepherd.”- Matthew 9:36

Jesus gives us everything we need in Him. He came to bring us life and bring it to the fullest (John 10:10). Yet, we often think we can find our own better, more fulfilling life “on the other side of the fence.” We see the threat of temptation, but we think we know better and can overcome on our own “chicken strength.”

Maybe Jesus really is a good shepherd. Maybe we really don’t have everything in this life figured out like we think we do. Maybe the one who made every cell in our body knows what is best for us and simply wants to protect us from the “dogs on the other side of the fence.”

I am prone to wander.  I am prone to question God is good.  I am not proud of it but I have even questioned if my shepherd really knows better than me?
I am just like a sheep and a chicken. I become convinced that my inadequately microscopic view on my life is all there is to see.

Lord, thank you for being a good shepherd. Thank you for protecting me even when I think I know better and thank you for bringing me back to the safety of your flock when I wander astray.

Thank you for being a good good, father.

Sorority girls can change the world available on Amazon

 

It’s all Jesus’ fault.

I never wanted to be the one to put myself out there, speak up on controversial topics, or share all the God awful things I never got caught doing in college. Yet here is the thing…this is where the good stuff happens. In our mess, in our brokenness, that is where a big God does his magic. He takes a former oh so typical sorority girl and turns her into someone who can write a book… what the actual heck is that about?!

I have never been more sure that I am right where God wants me to be. Speaking, blogging, and writing to the most amazing women on the planet, telling them they’re the change the world needs to see. This is why I say, it’s all Jesus’s fault really.

So here I am guys, terrified, yet absolutely ecstatic to be a part of this amazing ride. Here is what’s going on with my new book,”Sorority Girls Can Change the World”

sorority girls can change the world

Photo credit, Ashlyn Cathy

On January 27 th , I was able to interview with the amazing Athena Dean Holtz from Always Faithful radio out of Seattle, Washington. It aired live in the Seattle area and is available for download on iTunes.

I was able to share “Sorority Girls Can Change the World” with executive officers of Alpha Delta Pi in Atlanta Ga.

I met the Comfort Colors’ corporate team at a trade show in Orlando Florida, where I got to hear first hand that sorority girls are indeed what took them to a $100-million- dollar company almost overnight (sneak peek of chapter 2)

I was able to do an interview on the Life is a Marathon podcast.

And the most exciting news yet….

Because of your incredible support by sharing and liking the book, it is officially available in print on Amazon!

sorority girls can change the world on amazon

You amazing ladies, who share it with your sorority, are making this possible. Thank you for all you do!!

Stay in touch to see where God leads next! Instagram: @sororitygirlscanchangetheworld

 

 

 

To my single sisters on valentines day

I know it’s cute for Christian girls to pretend like Jesus is your Valentine.  That’s precious and everything but I know deep down a dozen roses and Ryan Gosling telling you you’re beautiful wouldn’t be bad either.

Your heart is made to be romanced. You crave for the hero rush in and tell you you’re worth fighting for.  This is a beautiful thing and part of the way you are created.  Don’t be ashamed of it.  Be proud of your feminity. Woman was literally formed from man.  We were made to compliment each other.  It’s ok to want this in life….but don’t rush it.

Remember being single is just a season of life.  Right now most of the country is covered in snow.  Your toes are frozen and you have forgotten what it’s like to lay by the pool.  But before you know it you will be cranking up the A/C longing for a cold day in the snow.

This is the same with singleness.  It is a season of life.  You can wish it away or you can make the most of it.
According to my calculations on an earlier post, there is a   .0016 chance that you won’t get married.  Chances are in your favor you WILL find your prince charming.  But until then why not enjoy the season of being responsible for you and you only?

When you meet the man of your dreams there are some areas you hope he has figured out that you won’t have to work through together.  And your dream man is hoping the same about you.  Why not take this season of singleness to take the following 3 areas of life and sharpen yourself.  Here are the areas you will look back and appreciate most:

Get out of debt

No one wants to say, “hey babe, guess what, I have thousands of dollars in bills that come with me!” When you get married that becomes BOTH of your debt.  Do both of yourselves a favor and work on that now.  Rachel Cruz has some excellent resources for college students to get out of debt.

Protect your body and your heart

If you have read any of my other blogs you know I am most passionate about this subject.  I have never met someone my age who wishes they would have dated more guys or slept around more.  Nothing good comes from sharing your body with multiple people. You were made to become ONE with ONE.  When you step outside of those bounds, the scars follow you into marriage.  There is no erase button to the decisions you make today.  Sex is the concrete to a relationship.  Concrete is not made to be moved, ever.  Save your heart and body for your husband, you will both thank me later.

Pray for your future husband

You may not know anything about him right now but if he is breathing, he needs prayer.  Wouldn’t you hope he is doing the same for you?
I hear the pusback, “but this is too hard, I can’t, I won’t, I’m scared.”
Yet don’t you hope your future man is debt free, not sleeping around, and praying for you as well?
Enjoy this season of singleness.  Don’t rush the seasons, bask in it, enjoy it and give thanks for this time to become the future wife God made you to be.

I had the incredible opportunity to interview with top 100 Christian Blogger Athena Dean Holtz, host of Always Faithful Radio.  Join us as we chat about how Sorority girls can Change the World!

The interview can be found through your podcast ap or online at link below.

http://www.kcisradio.com/Show/AlwaysFaithful.aspx

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Appearance:Always Faithful Radio Inverview
Outlet:Always Faithful Radio
Location:Seattle, WA
Format:Radio

https://www.amazon.com/Sorority-Girls-Can-Change-World-ebook/dp/B01N1TKAX8/ref=s9_simh_gw_g351_i1_r?_encoding=UTF8&fpl=fresh&pf_rd_m=ATVPDKIKX0DER&pf_rd_s=&pf_rd_r=PRJ4SA4QXJ6AHY27BKM9&pf_rd_t=36701&pf_rd_p=9f840529-d6e7-463b-ab2b-3aa605b03263&pf_rd_i=desktop

17 Things I love

I am a typical goal setting, competitive type A who always wants to do 17 things at once.  But that usually just makes me busy, not better.

I don’t want to miss this one shot at life.  My 90 yr old grandmother once told me the precious words that forever ring in my ears, “people miss so much when they are in a hurry”

It’s a process that I have not mastered but I am starting to list 3 things each night before I go to bed that I am thankful for.  Day by day I am learning how much I have to appreciate.  I am learning to take it slower, smell the roses longer and just enjoy the simple stuff…like….

1) The smell of rain

2) The way a 7 year old with 4 missing teeth says “sea shells”

3) The way Bryan enjoys stories about our girls as much as I do.

4) My amazing singing voice when I am alone in the car and the radio is turned up REALLY loud (amazing is a relative term in this sentence).

5) How a tiny seed can grow into a great big plant, just because God said so.

6) This adorable key necklace made by my friend Susie Miller that reminds me to pray for my sisters trapped in modern day slavery.

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7) 80’s music

8) Chai Tea Lattes

9) My friend Faith Williams who unapologetically chases Jesus with all of her adorable 20-year-old self. Writes with wisdom of someone twice her age at her beautiful blog  and manages the sorority girls can change the world insta account. Because she is also really good at PR.

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10) Anyting written by Mark Batterson.  I have read this one in particular 3 times

11) Less clothes in my closet and more donations to people who don’t have as much

12) A Bible with notes and highlights all over the pages

13) Friends who invite me in even when their house isn’t perfect

14) These two amazing women who are speaking to college women about our great big God at Georgia Southern University!

Jordan Lee (soul Scripts) And Stephanie May Wilson (lipstick gospel)  If you are not already following them.  Please click on their names and fix that ASAP.

Stephanie Mae Wilson and Katie Bulmer

15) Friends that get me. You know the ones. You don’t have to explain anything because they totally get you. I love them.

16) Fake eye lashes.  OMG I know I’m a total diva but I’m obsessed and I don’t care what you think

17) Cuddles with Bryan on the couch watching “this is us” on NBC

What are you loving this time of year?

Losing my jewels

When I turned 7  years old my grandmother decided to give me a sapphire (my birthstone) ring.  I am not sure how or why but somehow this was decided upon as a good idea.

I currently have an 7-year old who, until recently wanted to be a mermaid when she grows up.  I can’t imagine trusting her with such an expensive piece of jewelry.  But never-the-less, when I was 7 my grandmother thought I could handle the responsibility of taking care of this expensive gift.

You can imagine my 7-year-old-self receiving a piece of jewelry that sparkled and glittered and made me look like a princess.  I CHERISHED IT!

My mother who was certainly grateful but I’m sure slightly terrified that her 7 year old has been trusted with this the ring sat me down to make sure I understood this responsibility and to also give me a rule in how to care for it.  

I was given only one rule.  The rule was to make SURE the ring was kept in the safe place.  My ring had two safe spots, it stayed on my finger most the time but when I went swimming or took a shower, it stayed in my jewelry box, on the second shelf, where it was safe.   Those places were determined my “ring’s safe place.” And didn’t need to be anywhere else, EVER.

A few years went by and the magnitude of what I have been trusted with faded and I became careless with my gift. 

One day we went to the beach. Right before I ran to the ocean I looked down at my hand and realized my ring was still on my finger.  I had this inner turmoil in my mind, my mom said the safe places were my finger and my jewelry box.  My jewelry box is back home in Atlanta and I’m afraid if I leave it on I will loose it in the ocean…also I heard somewhere sparkly things attract sharks?  Either way I’m not going in the ocean with my ring. 

I didn’t tell my mom but I told myself JUST THIS ONCE, I’ll take it out of the safe place.  I put my ring in the pocket of my mother’s cover up hanging on the back of the beach chair.

You know where this is going….

Later that day I was searching everywhere.  Tears falling on the sand as I searched every inch surrounding the beach chair desperate to find what I lost.

 I was careless ONE time.  I thought I knew better, I thought I could do as I wanted and have no consequences. My gift was lost.

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Photo credit Ashly Cathy 

God has given us each a gift,  A RARE, precious, expensive I would even say sacred jewel, and that is our body.

 Our body, made to be shared with a life partner is given to us as a gift.  We don’t realize how rare, expensive and precious our gift is.  And sometimes we think we can take our bodies “just this once” out of the safe place it will be fine and there will be no consequences.

God gave us ONE rule regarding our sexuality.  Keep it in its safe place. Just like a fire, in a fire place it is beautiful and helpful.  In the middle of my living room, a fire is destructive and leaves scars. 

‘Flee from sexual immorality. All other sins a person commits are outside the body, but whoever sins sexually, sins against their own body. Do you not know that your bodies are temples of the Holy Spirit, who is in you, whom you have received from God? You are not your own; you were bought at a price. Therefore honor God with your bodies.’ 1 Corinthians 6:18

Do we think God gave us this command because He is mean and doesn’t want us to have any fun?  Or maybe it’s because He genuinely knows what a precious jewel you have been trusted with and he knows the consequences when it is taken out of the safe place.

 You were designed to become one with one.  Your body is treasured, cherished and unique.  Sex is a gift to be shared in the safe, trusting and mutual respect of the covenant bond of marriage.

You are worth immensely more than what our culture has taught you.  You are a jewel my friend.

I got to be a part of an amazing team of bloggers, writers, and lion chasers to help launch Mark Batterson’s book, “Chase the Lion.”

This book was incredible.  Today is the day to find your inner brave and chase the lions in you life and this book will help you get there!

Appearance:“Chase the Lion” by Mark Batterson Book launch team

What if Mary had said no?

Thank you  Foreverymom.com for re-posting this on your site!

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What if Mary had said no?

Have you ever considered this?

Mary who is engaged to be married is being told by an angel that she is to carry the Lord’s son.  There are about a million things she can be worried about.

Not only is she facing possible execution, her fiancé leaving her, and ridicule…  In the unlikely event that everyone believes her, I think it would be totally valid for her to think: What about me and my plans?  I am about to get married!!  I don’t want to have to alter the wedding dress!  I like being a regular girl, everyone is going to ask me tons of questions!   I really am too busy for all this right now!  God can you find someone else?

Can you imagine this in today culture?  What with all our “plans and schedules”  I’m afraid we would just be too busy for such a task!

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But instead of any of these excuses she says:

 “I am the Lord’s servant,” Mary answered. “May it be with me just as you say.”

I think Mary “got” something that we often just don’t comprehend.

It wasn’t about her.

She had the amazing privilege to be the mother of Jesus because she was willing to be “the Lord’s servant.”

This is HUGE

And her self-sacrificing doesn’t end there.  Imagine you have agreed to carry God’s baby and it comes time for you to deliver.  I don’t know but I’m thinking maybe an angel comes and offers a big palace for me to deliver and it is a totally

Imagine you have agreed to carry God’s baby and it comes time for you to deliver.  I don’t know but I’m thinking maybe an angel comes and offers a big palace for me to deliver.   Totally pain-free child birth complete with people fanning me and feeding me grapes would also be nice.

But as we know, she has to make a long journey on a donkey only to find there is NO ROOM for them at the inn and she has no choice but to deliver Jesus in a manger.

You would think Mary would be shouting,
“UMM HELLO HAVING GOD’S SON HERE??? Can someone ELSE sleep in the manger for crying out loud?!!”

Yet Mary knew this wasn’t about her…it was ALL about Jesus. 

Every piece of her story, her pain, and even her frustration was all part of the beautiful story that we still remember today and will remember for generations to come, not because of her, but because of Jesus.

While I certainly believe Mary was the one God choose but what if she had said no.  She would have been free to do live her own little “important” life not to be “inconvenienced with the fear of being stoned and shaming her fiancé and family.   Yet her own little plans and agenda would have died with her generations ago and we would never even know her name.  

Making His name famous, furthering His kingdom, and doing HIS work.  His name is the only one that will last through the generations.  Why is it so hard for us to realize this?

Father my own little Kingdom is just laughable really.  Take my oh so important “plans” and use them for YOUR glory.  My plans and kingdoms will fall, but your Lord never will.

Mary was truly the Lord’s servant.  She put her own plans, fears, and excuses to the side.  None of that matters when the God of the universe has other plans.

Sorority Girls Can Change the World book release

Guys, it’s official.  “Sorority girls can change the world” is ready to read!

This is a book to all the girls looking for their happily ever after realizing dang Cinderella’s castle was so much farther away than they thought it would be.   To the girl that is longing for significance but keep coming up empty.  I hear you, and I wrote this for you.

If you are reading this book,  I have prayed for you before you read this.  My prayer is something in these pages will help you to realize your incredible power of influence and the world changing potential within you! If you know a sorority girl that could benefit from these words I hope you share it with her too.

Here is what the readers are saying

“This book is full of so many truthful stories that all college girls need to be reminded of.”   Caitlyn Fears Phi Mu

“Love!! Can’t wait for this book to be in the hands of every college girl.  So much truth in these pages” -Jenny Way Alpha Delta Pi

Sorority Girls Can Change The World, is a book of hope, encouragement, and love. May it stir your heart as it has mine.  -Kiley B. Ward Kappa Kappa Gamma

Sign up for my newsletter and I’ll send you a free copy of my book

 

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I’d love to send you a free copy of my book!




What has 1.7 million listeners and downloaded in 205 different countries?  Why the “life is a marathon podcast” of course!

And yours truly gets to be a guest speaker Thursday December 15th!  Subscribe to the podcast and get ready to listen as we talk about being brave in an ocean of social pressure.  Let’s encourage each other and light some fires within our friend groups to stop settling for status quo, start questioning the way ‘it’s always been done” and start living the life we are created to live.

Let’s be brave!

Listen for free here!

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Date:December 15, 2016
Appearance:Your Life is a Marathon podcast
Location:Richmond, VA
Format:Podcast

https://www.amazon.com/Sorority-Girls-Can-Change-World-ebook/dp/B01N1TKAX8/ref=s9_simh_gw_g351_i1_r?_encoding=UTF8&fpl=fresh&pf_rd_m=ATVPDKIKX0DER&pf_rd_s=&pf_rd_r=PRJ4SA4QXJ6AHY27BKM9&pf_rd_t=36701&pf_rd_p=9f840529-d6e7-463b-ab2b-3aa605b03263&pf_rd_i=desktop