Loving Who God Made You To Be

Hello there lovelies!

Today we have a guest post from my friend Cori. She was one of the first people to volunteer to write a blog post for this new blog post series I wanna do throughout the year and I LOVE what she has to say.

I hope you all receive some encouragement from this lovely gals words of wisdom.

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Well, it’s a new year again and our social media is filled with “New year new me” posts and new years resolutions that will last a couple of weeks.  Now don’t get me wrong, I don’t see anything wrong with trying to better yourself, but when its all about me, me, me I think we might just be missing the point. My resolution is to grow closer to Christ and to love who He made me.
        The world tells us that it is all about you. You do you. You only live once. I agree to make the most of your life but when your life revolves around you and you only that isn’t exactly what God has planned. God tells us to live humbly and to always put your neighbor before yourself. He tells us to give a homeless man the clothes off our backs if he doesn’t have any. He tells us to pray for our enemies and love them no matter the harm they’ve caused you.  That may not be very easy, but that is what we are called to. There is a difference between loving who God made you and being a self centered jerk
        Now my life hasn’t been that easy. I was sexually abused, I’ve harmed myself and did for many years, and I even attempted suicide. Growing up I’ve had major self esteem problems.  I would look at myself in the mirror and hate everything about my reflection. I would cry at night because I wasn’t good enough for society or even myself. It wasn’t until recently, actually, that I realized  I wasn’t living how God had planned. It took a mental hospital being waved over my head for me to finally get my act together.  My point is this: God made you who you are for a reason and you are perfectly and wonderfully made. He planned out every inch of you, beautifully, inside of your mother and God, the God of the universe, does not make mistakes. (Psalms 139:13-18)
        Now I pray that in this new year you learn to love yourself for who God made you. Not for what the world wants you to be. Serve your Lord with all your heart soul and mind and love every bit of yourself because the creator of everything there ever was and is to come made you and that is pretty amazing if you think about it.
    Now I still deal with all of these things today. I am not saying that life is gonna be a bundle of joy on a sunny day. Life sucks, there’s no other way to put it, but it is so much easier to have hope and to love who God made you to be then to dwell on things and to try to be this perfect person society makes the standard out to be. You will never be perfect. You will never be “Good enough” , but you know what? That’s why Christ died for us. So that in Him we are good enough and always will be. God doesn’t look at us for all the bad things we have done.  He looks at us as perfect, just as He made us perfectly.

“Lord help me to love who You made me to be. Help me serve you in any way that i can in this new year. I pray that in the new year i grow spiritually and grow to love others more than myself, thank you for all these blessings, i pray that my self esteem will be high this year. In your name I pray , Amen.”

Yours Truly,
Cori Heck
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When Things Don’t Go As Planned

Over the past few weeks I’ve come to realise that things so far haven’t gone how I planned. But I guess things never really do…A photo by Rosalind Chang. unsplash.com/photos/qtIsUwoP94s

 

I’m a planner. I plan things and I make lists… I guess you could say i’m a ‘lister’ (only some of you are going to get this and that’s okay)

 

So when things didn’t/don’t or aren’t going as I hoped and planned I often feel lost and/or frustrated.

Why do I do this? Why do I make lists all the time if it frustrates me half the time?

Because it helps me feel like I have MORE control over my life than I actually do.

 

As much as I wish that my lists and planning just went how I wanted I know that’s not how life works. I can pout and be miserable about it but it doesn’t change that fact. So I’ve actually started moving away from planning every little thing in my life and just ‘going with the flow.’ Things like being with my friends and my boyfriend has made me realise the importance of just letting things happen and the relief and relaxation that comes with it.

Learning to just LIVE in the MOMENT. 

 

I’ve learned this all when it comes to my everyday life as well. (Not just more important or significant days or events in my life) ESPECIALLY during my move and the transition to moving and being in a new place. Only now as I’m slowly starting to feel like myself again after feeling not very much like myself (in this transition of moving and a new job.) as, once again, things didn’t go as I planned.

 

I still haven’t really made any friends and being more introverted is also part of my problem. But this is causing problems cause I’m getting bored and stressed out in my own tiny apartment. Adjustment is a lot harder than I EVER would have thought. It feels I’m climbing a mountain I don’t want to be or stuck in some hole going in circles over and over and over again.

 

But despite this all I’ve learned to just trust in God (I’m gonna share the lyrics to a song that’s been helping me a lot at the end of this post) and that my moving here is all part of some plan and as much as I wish I could just make a list to sort it out, I know I can’t and I have to be patient.

 

Lean on God and just let life be…

 

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When You don’t move the mountains
I’m needing You to move
When You don’t part the waters
I wish I could walk through
When You don’t give the answers
As I cry out to You
I will trust, I will trust
I will trust in You

Truth is You know what tomorrow brings
There’s not a day ahead You have not seen
So in all things be my life and breath
I want what You want Lord and nothing less

~Trust in You by Lauren Daigle

Thus Begins A New Chapter

As one chapter comes to an end, another begins.

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I feel like this last week has been me adulting like crazy.

I’ve been meeting with some of my best friends.

I’ve been setting up power and internet stuff.

I’ve been buying furniture and dishes.

I’ve been trying to change my cell phone plan to better fit this next step in life and SO much more.

 

Why?

 

Because I’m moving.

Away from home.

To a new job.

With a new apartment.

 

I will still be around and blogging so don’t worry about that 😉 but yeah. I’m moving. I’ve been living with my giant lovable family for 19 years so this is a weird experience for me as I’m also moving 6 hours away from my family. I’m gonna miss them like crazy but I’m thankful for technology so we can talk frequently and stay connected but I’m also so excited.

I’ll  be moving in with me bookworm, writer and nerdy fangirl bestie so that will make the transition a little easier so thats exciting. (Our tea and book collection combined will be envied by all for sure.) I’ll be moving to a new town and away from the nosy people I’ve had major run ins in town this summer. (#villagelife)

But by moving to a new town it means I’ll (once again saying it) be far from my really good friends, my family, and my church family. I know I will meet new people but I know that even when I do, they won’t ever replace the people I have met here.

The people who have impacted and changed my life.

It’s kinda what I’ve been dwelling on but I know that I’m not leaving forever and so my family and my friends who have become my family will see me again. With that I just want to say this:

No matter where you go, your family and friends will still be with you. Their love goes with you wherever you go. SO if you are called to go across the world then go. Or if you are called to move across town then go. If you are called to another town, city, or village, then GO.

Just do it.

Go.

Have fun. Enjoy life and know that as this new chapter in your life begins that the people you know and love go with you in your heart.

The Dying of a Dream… But thats okay!

Ever since I was a little girl I’ve wanted to get married and honestly its something I still want to do one day. I’ve always dreamed about the wedding venue, what my dress would be like, what my Fiancé/husband would … Continue reading

Book Review – The Sound of Emeralds

Hello Readers!

I’m back with another book review! It might be the last one for a couple weeks cause I won’t have much reading time but I promise I’m working through like 3 books right now…

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So, with that said. Lets get on to this review!

Sound of Emeralds

 

What once was blazing hatred has turned to lasting love, but could the union of a wild heart with that of a lady ever result in more than heartache?

With the help of an old friend with uncertain loyalties, Dirk inches ever closer to clearing his name. Gwyneth throws her faith into good tidings and the promise of a future as a family. But an old evil comes to call, just as tragedy rips apart a fledgling truce. Enemies from the past and grief for the future threaten to tear asunder what God had brought together…

As the date of Dirk’s trial approaches, his fate and his family hang in the balance. Will he be proven innocent of Gwyneth’s parents’ murders—or separated from her forever? How much pain does it take to erode a love steadfast?

 

So basically this book broke my heart, then broke it again…..then broke it AGAIN.

Rachelle has this wonderful way of making you feel the pain and emotions these characters feel even though you may never have felt it before. She just gives this insight that radiates off the characters that you can’t help but sympathize for them and feel their pain and sorrow…or even their joy and happiness too! I just LOVE how Rachelle’s stories are just so true and filled with love and a true picture of what that really is. Especially during hard times and grief. (as this novel captures perfectly.) Honestly, the story was fabulous but what I keep going back to was the emotion and the accurate portrayal of true love and what it actually is. I feel like most novels can twist the idea of love into some almost – impossible, once in a lifetime thing and if you miss it, well too bad. Not to mention love and relationships where two people are in love is conveyed as absolutely flawless and perfect. I mean I’m no expect with love and relationships but to me that seems wrong. But do Rachelle’s books have any of that wrong-ness? NOPE.

anyways

Many tears were shed and much heartbreak occurred while reading this book and I was honestly afraid for how it was gonna end (Can I just say the end/epilogue was PERFECT! ❤ ) but in the end my heart wasn’t as broken and I was able to glue and sew as many pieces together as possible. The feels in this book were absolutely insane and sad and heartbreaking ok?

and what rating do I give a book that completely shattered my heart?

5 stars of course!

 

Honestly this entire book series should get a million and one stars because it is by far one of the best Historical novel series I’ve ever read. I mean…I haven’t read much in this genre but what I’ve read in this genre, The Steadfast Love Series is by far the best…so If you haven’t read it yet you probably should.

BookLook Bloggers

Hello Lovelies!

Just popping in to talk about something called BookLook Bloggers. Basically BookLook Bloggers is a website where, once you have a certain amount of blog followers, you can request books (physical copies and ebooks) for review. Pretty cool right?

Something even cooler (yeah yeah, I know thats not used properly) is that I finally applied today and got accepted!

excited

I kept meaning to apply for a while now but have been crazy busy!  But now I finally just sat down and did it and already I’ve requested some paper back books to read! So, it will be a little while before they come (3-4 weeks cause I’m in Canada but YES they ship worldwide!) but by then I should have life together somewhat and I’ll be almost done school at that point which means REVIEWS AND BOOK READING ALL OVER THE PLACE!

….Or maybe. I know it will for sure be more often because I’ll be free from the clutches of High School. From there I’ll be working but minor details my friends, minor details.

Is this something you’re interested in and want to check out? Well you can click the link I provided above or (hopefully if this works) click this blog button and it should take you to the website.

 

I review for BookLook Bloggers
At this point I’m off to my nannying job but I just had to come tell you all because I’m excited! I’ll let you know what books I requested in another post 😉

Until Next time!

Adriana G.

 

Cover Reveal! ~ A Lady Unrivaled by Roseanna White

Hello Lovely People!

Its been forever and a year ago that I’ve done a cover reveal (or it feels like it) but FINALLY I’m doing one now! Today I’m going to be revealing the cover for Book 3 of Roseanna White’s Ladies of the Manor series and I’m super excited to show you the cover because IT. IS. STUNNING!

BUT! Before I show you it, its time to tell you lovely people about the series first.

 

Fangirling

SO! The Ladies of the Manor Series take readers back in time to Edwardian England, when automobiles and electric lights were all the rage, but the old way of life still ruling the land. Lords and ladies, maids and valets…and in this case, a dose of danger and mystery to take them all on their journey to love.

“With the momentum and drama of a modern thriller and the charm and intrigue of an Edwardian upper-class romance, White balances hearty helpings of names, ranks, and family history with highly entertaining situations and plenty of humor.” ~Booklist on The Reluctant DuchessBlurb for A Lady Unrivaled

“White Is Quickly Becoming the Top Name in Edwardian Romance! Lady Ella Myerston can always find a reason to smile–even if it’s just in hope that tomorrow will be better than today. All her life everyone has tried to protect her from the realities of the world, but Ella knows very well the danger that has haunted her brother and their friend, and she won’t wait for it to strike again. She intends to take action . . . and if that happens to involve an adventurous trip to the Cotswolds, then so much the better. Lord Cayton has already broken two hearts, including that of his first wife, who died before he could convince himself to love her. Now he’s determined to live a better life. But that proves complicated when old friends arrive on the scene and try to threaten him into a life of crime. He does his best to remove the intriguing Lady Ella from danger, but the stubborn girl won’t budge. How else can he redeem himself, though, but by saving her–and his daughter–from those dangerous people who seem ready to destroy them all?” ~Amazon Review/Blurb

 

Author Bio

Roseanna M. White pens her novels beneath her Betsy Ross flag, with her Jane Austen action figure watching over her. When not writing fiction, she’s homeschooling her two children, editing and designing, and pretending her house will clean itself. Roseanna’s novels range from biblical fiction to American-set romances to her new British series. She lives with her family in West Virginia. Learn more at www.RoseannaMWhite.com

 

and now! with all this lovely info shared about the series and the author that is BOUND to have you dying to read this story its time to reveal the cover! So without further ado. Here is the BEAUTIFUL and STUNNING cover for A Lady Unrivaled!

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TA-DAAAAAA!!!!

 

Links for A Lady Unrivaled

Find it on Amazon | Find it on Christian Book | Find it on Goodreads | See the Pinterest Page

Cover Reveal ||The Sound of Silver By Rachelle Rea

Hello Readers!

Today, I bring you a cover reveal of the next book in Rachelle Rea’s Steadfast Love series! (I reviewed the first book, The Sound of Diamonds, recently.)

I’m super excited to share the synopsis and cover for book two called The Sound of Silver! So, with that said, lets get going!

THE SOUND OF SILVER WILL BE RELEASE OCTOBER 15th 2015

Synopsis:

The stalwart saint and the redeemed rebel. One is fighting for faith, the other for honor…

After Dirk rescues Gwyneth from the Iconoclastic Fury, she discovers that faith is sometimes fragile—and hope is not as easy as it may seem. Gwyneth continues her quest to learn more about the love of God preached by Protestants she once distrusted.

Meanwhile, Dirk’s quest is to prevent his sullied name from staining hers. Will his choice to protect her prove the undoing of her first faltering steps toward a Father God? Once separated, will Dirk and Gwyneth’s searching hearts ever sing the same song?

Now that I’ve shared that, it’s time to reveal the cover! Can I get a drumroll?

*drumroll*

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The Sound of Silver Purchase Links :

Barnes & Noble: coming Oct. 15
Amazon Paperback: pre-order link coming soon
Kindle: pre-order link coming soon
Books a Million: coming Oct. 15
Diamonds on Goodreads: coming soon

Want to buy book one? Well, look no further!

The Sound of Diamonds Purchase Links:

Barnes & Noble: http://is.gd/qhoCTc
Amazon Paperback: http://is.gd/7z9vls
Kindle: http://is.gd/EZ7DJ1
Books a Million: http://is.gd/M2y5P2
Diamonds on Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/24348955-the-sound-of-diamonds

About The Author:

Rachelle ReaRachelle Rea plots her novels while driving around the little town she’s lived in all her life in her dream car, a pick-up truck. As a freelance editor, she enjoys mentoring fellow authors in the craft. A homeschool graduate and retired gymnast, she wrote the Sound of Diamonds the summer after her sophomore year of college.

 

Website: http://rachellerea.com/
Blog: http://rachellerea.com/blog/
Facebook: http://facebook.com/inspiringdaring
Twitter: https://twitter.com/RachelleRea
Pinterest: http://www.pinterest.com/rachellerea/
Amazon Author Page: http://www.amazon.com/Rachelle-Rea/e/B00RZHIL1Q
Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/8144149.Rachelle_Rea?from_search=true&search_version=service

Turning Point Blog Tour

 

Turning-Point-Front

Hello Readers!

So, I nearly forgot about my post for today but then…I didn’t. So it’s all good and I’m excited to share this with you all.

I’m here to tell you about this awesome set of books (7 of them, in fact) perfect for your summer reading. For a limited time, the Turning Point collection is featuring seven full length young adult novels for only 99 cents available at Amazon, Barnes & Noble, iTunes, and Kobo! 99 cents people! I’ve yet to get my copy…But I think you all know by now not to follow my book buying example, becasue I never have money to afford books…or almost never…..

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Here are the titles in the set!

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Turning Point: 7 Young Adult Inspirational Novels in One Set Making it easy (and super cheap!) for you. All your summer reading is right here in this one set. Get seven full-length novels from some of your favorite authors.

 

By Darkness Hid, Jill Williamson

Given the chance to train as a squire, kitchen servant Achan Cham hopes to pull himself out of his pitiful life and become a Kingsguard Knight. When Achan’s owner learns of his training, he forces Achan to spar with the Crown Prince–more of a death sentence than an honor. Meanwhile, strange voices in Achan’s head cause him to fear he’s going mad. While escorting the prince to a council presentation, their convoy is attacked. Achan is wounded and arrested, but escapes from prison–only to discover a secret about himself he never believed possible.

 

 

Whisper If You Have To, Staci Stallings

Secrets. Alison Prescott has collected a boatload of them in her short lifetime. Moving to a new school in a new town was supposed to fix everything; however, when she meets a new set of friends, keeping those secrets might just ruin everything including her fledgling relationship with the school’s basketball star, Chad Dourozette. How far will Allison go to keep the secrets she can never tell anyone?

 

 

It’s Complicated, Laura L. Smith

There’s a reason Facebook has the Status Update, It’s Complicated. Follow four college roommates, Claire, Palmer, Hannah, and Kat as they maneuver crushes, confusion, and the crisis when pushy boys go too far. Complicated as it is, these four friends will pull through, guided by the strength of their friendship and the power of God’s love.

 

 

Failstate, John W. Otte

A fledgling teenage superhero competes on a reality TV show for a government vigilante license. When one of his competitors is murdered, Failstate sets out on a quest to avenge her death. But will his superpowered lunk of a big brother ruin everything?

 

 

The Wishing Pearl, Nicole O’Dell

Sixteen-year-old Olivia Mansfield can’t wait to escape the confines of her home, which promises nothing but perpetual torment and abuse from her stepfather. When poor choices lead her to the brink of a complete breakdown, Olivia comes to a crossroads. Will she find the path to ultimate hope and healing that her heart longs for?

 

 

Mardan’s Mark, Kathrese McKee

Abducted by pirates and taken behind enemy lines across the Great Gulf, Princess Srilani is determined to save her sisters and younger brother, the crown prince, from captivity. She convinces their caretaker, Aldan, and his brother slaves to share the perilous journey home. This ragtag group of unlikely heroes sets out on a quest — pursued by cutthroat pirates, merciless priests, and marauding soldiers — to return the heir to his kingdom before war breaks out. In this epic adventure fantasy, Srilani and Aldan risk everything to save a prince and a nation, discovering along the way that death is not their deepest fear.

 

 

Glass Girl, Laura Anderson Kurk

After her older brother Wyatt is killed in a jealousy-fueled incident and her mother disappears, Meg Kavanagh decides surviving is easy—it’s living that takes guts. She believes she’s to blame for Wyatt’s death, but when Henry Whitmire steps in with a secret, will Meg forgive herself enough to accept the good things in life like the rush of first love and the power of mercy? – See more at: http://jillwilliamson.com/turning-point-blog-tour-information/#sthash.mqPPTgv6.dpuf

Standing Out in Your Writing {And What Not to Include}

 

Standing Out in Your Writing {And What Not to Include}

 

Hujambo! (That’s Swahili for hello!)

Thanks to Adriana Gabrielle for allowing me to post on her blog! I feel blessed for this opportunity!

So I went back and forth a few times while debating what to write about. I mean, there’s so many options. But I had to settle on something close to my heart—it’s one of my passions. Something important. Something that needs to be thought about.

But first, so you know where I’m coming from, let’s play a get-to-know-Rachel-game!

I’m going to list five things about me below:

1. I am in love with Jesus Christ, my Redeemer and Creator.

2. I am called by God to make a difference through the written word. A favorite term I’ve heard is Warrior of the Pen.

3. I’m an army brat. I’ve moved about ten times and they’re still racking up. I’ve been to nine schools (and homeschooled for a few years). I’m about to head to my tenth this fall (and hopefully the last…)

4. Jazz is my jam.

5. I could eat rice and beans three times a day…every day. But I don’t.

So today’s post is about standing out in our writing and being different. And, if we want to stand out and be different and make a difference…what we should leave out of our writing.

There’s a lot of popular fiction out there, aye? We’ve got contemporary YA, dystopian, steampunk, apocalyptic, sci-fi, fantasy…the genres go on and on.

And I have a problem.

A lot of popular fiction that people rage about (in a good way) is filled with worldly ways. Chock full of swearing, drugs/drinking, and inappropriate relationships…and these things are viewed in a good light.

I don’t know about you, but this stuff bothers me. Last year I tried to pick up a popular YA book that I really wanted to read. I wanted to see what everybody was going on about.

Let me tell you. I read about five pages and I had to put it down. There had been at least ten swear words (hint: not darn) and a few times where God’s name was taken in vain.

And I found out later that there was definitely some pre-marital inappropriateness going on in the book. I’m relieved I didn’t read it.

But there was a catch in my spirit, y’all. I wondered how my God-loving friends could be reading this and celebrating it. I wondered why they weren’t bothered by this blatant immorality.

As a Christian I’m supposed to be different than the rest of the world. My life is an example. What I read, listen to, watch, and write…should be monitored so that I’m not filling my head with the junk that’s already so prevalent in the world.

Words are influential. They impact people. They can save lives. They can also destroy them. It’s our duty to ensure that our words are full of worth. That our words are full of truth. They should encourage and speak life and love. They should stand out like a lamp on a hill.

Under no circumstance should they blend right in with the rest of society’s words.

That’s a red flag.

We have a responsibility to the people reading our stuff. We have a responsibility to tell them about our Heavenly King. We can’t let them down. We can’t let the lost continue in their brokenness just because we want to fit in and not cause a stir.

Jesus went into the temple with a whip, y’all. He wasn’t afraid of making a stir.

We can save lives.

If our writing glorifies anything on this list…we’re doing something wrong:

 

1. Swearing. Okay, people are already surrounded by this continually throughout their days. Do we really want to give them more? Are we going to look like the rest of the world? God’s Word says to keep our tongues from filthy talk, and to keep our minds on things pure. {2 Timothy 1:16; James 5:12}

2. Sex. Really? Really? Do you need to have inappropriate scenes in your books? Is that going to make anybody feel better? Are you going to stand out and make a difference? No. You’ll be just like everybody else. And trust me, that isn’t a good thing. The Bible has all the answers you need about this one. From staying pure before marriage to steering clear of sexual immorality. It’s chock full of warnings and cautions.

3. Drunkenness. The Bible doesn’t say it’s bad to drink. Jesus drank wine. But it does say we shouldn’t get drunk. Don’t support this in your writing. {Ephesians 5:18}

4. Drugs. Why? Just why? Drugs don’t bring good. Solomon talks about trying all the stuff under the sun and how it came to nothing. I’d say drugs definitely can fall in that list.

 

If your writing portrays any of things, be sure the characters receive consequences from their actions. Be sure the things portrayed are known to be bad. Make sure readers don’t perceive that you are pro these things.

I have characters who partake in lifestyles I am against. But I don’t glorify that. It is known that these things are wrong. There are definitely consequences.

Being a writer means we get to dabble in things we’d never be able to do in real life. But that isn’t an excuse to dabble in things that go against God.

There are ways to express real life without gory details. There are ways to express real life while still retaining the innocence of yourself and your readers.

“Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is—His good, pleasing and perfect will.” Romans 12:2

Basically, if there’s something in your writing that goes against what God’s Word says, there’s a problem. If you’re glorifying something that’s wrong, you aren’t making a difference. You’re just adding to the noise. And I’m pretty sure most of us want our writing to stand out.

If you’re not sure, check your Bible.

God Bless! I hope to hear what you think!

 

Rachel Lester is a daughter of the King. Soon she’ll be off to college to follow God’s call on her life to be a writer and missionary. Rachel has been writing since she was a wee thing, but only during the past few years has she really delved deeper into the realm. She’s fought battles, especially with fear, but Christus Victor! She enjoys reading, almost anything outdoorsy, rockin’ out to jazz, and eating rice and beans. She has a passion to reach those who are broken and tell them the Truth. Rachel loves Jesus Christ, her Author and Redeemer.

{2 Timothy 1:7}

You can find her writing blog here: http://waterandpen.blogspot.com/

And you can find her young women’s Christian blog here: http://nolongerstone.blogspot.com/

Find her on Pinterest at: https://www.pinterest.com/waterandpen/