Just Wait…

Two of my least favorite words: “just wait.”

I heard these words from so many people when Jordan and I were engaged and just married. “You just wait until you’ve been married a few years. The new will wear off and you’ll be just like the rest of us’ Or my favorite, ‘You just wait…enjoy the honeymoon stage while it lasts!” I never will forget how discouraging that was to hear. Why must people tear others down? Why can’t you just let people be happy?

And now we are hearing it again, but for a different reason…”You just wait…you’ll find out soon enough!” (Pertaining to ANYTHING child related – behavior, eating habits, how I’ll never sleep again, school activities, tantrums, how our house will never be clean again, how expensive babies can be, and the list goes on and on…). Don’t you think we’ve thought about all of this? My husband and I are 30 years old. And while we don’t have a real clue what we are about to get ourselves into when Grayson arrives, is it really necessary to make us feel defeated as parents before we even get started? I know that I won’t get much sleep the first several years (I’m already getting good at running on 5 or 6 hours or so just due to pregnancy). I know that my child will not be perfect and he will act out in the most inopportune moments, and he’ll probably say things that embarrass us from time to time. I know that boys will be boys, and we will probably have broken windows, messy floors, stinky clothes, and lots of jokes about bodily functions.

But I prayed for that.

I admit – after wanting to be a stay-at-home mom for so many years (that’s all I wanted to do when I was in high school), I totally changed my mind when I graduated college and started working. It took me a long time to get mentally ready – well, as ready as you can be – to start trying to have kids. But once God showed me that the time was right, I prayed for those things. I prayed for the sleepless nights and dirty house. I prayed for the chaotic schedule that we’re sure to have that will completely throw off my beloved, familiar routine. However, I also prayed for the snuggles, and the “I love you Mama,” and getting to see my husband be a dad. So let us enjoy it – even if for a short time. Let’s turn the “just waits” into “Just wait until you lay eyes on your son for the first time’ and ‘Just wait until you get to hear those sweet baby giggles.”

I know life is hard. And I know I don’t know how hard it can be just yet. But life is too short to “just wait” on the bad things and focus on the hard times. So for now, I’ll “just wait” on Baby Grayson to get here and for my life to be changed forever. And I’m completely ok with that.

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Are You a Hopeful Christian? Or Are You a Believing One?

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Yesterday I prayed a prayer that I have been praying for months now. I pray it multiple times a week. It’s on my prayer wall. I have even asked others to pray it with me. But do you know what was different about yesterday’s prayer?

I realized that this entire time I had just been “hoping” it would be answered. I was hopeful that something would happen. Up until yesterday, I don’t think I truly BELIEVED that anything would come of it. As awful as it sounds to say it out loud, I didn’t believe that God was going to answer my prayer.

How guilty are we of doing that, though? How many times do we pray a prayer and “hope” that God will take care of it, but then we never actually give it over completely to Him? Why do we feel that we need to care those burdens around with us when God wants to take them off our shoulders?

Now, God may not answer my prayer in the way that I see, but He WILL answer it. And He will answer it in His timing and in His perfect way. Last week, I attended a leadership conference where I had the privilege to hear Lysa Terkeurst speak. She shared an amazing story about God’s perfect timing, but the one thing that she said that has stuck with me is this: “There’s what I see…and then there’s what God is doing.” We do not get to see the big picture, but God is always in control of it all. We only get a small piece of the puzzle BUT when we trust and BELIEVE that He is going to see it through, God will show up and show out.

So from now on, I am fully believing that God is going to answer my prayer. It may not be today, tomorrow, or next week. It may not happen for another few years. But when it does (and it WILL), I cannot wait to tell you all about it.

Worth the Wait

I can’t believe it’s been a year. It seriously seems like just yesterday! Almost one year ago, on February 6, 2016, on a hiking trip by a waterfall in Gatlinburg, Tennessee, Jordan asked me to be his wife. I honestly don’t remember everything he said that day because I was too busy smiling and nodding and happy-crying.

I had waited a long time for him. I had honestly reached a point in my life that I had given up on finding a husband. I had finally given everything over to God and told Him that I was content and at peace with it, but if He had other plans, then I would gladly follow. Only a few short weeks passed by, and then I met Jordan.

I had been on some terrible dates before I met him. I had also been on dates where everything “should” be right. You know, where the guy has a great job, nice house, goes to church, treats you well…but you just aren’t feeling it. I would get so discouraged when my family or friends would ask how my dates had gone because I never had good news. I felt like something was wrong with me. Eventually, though, I realized (after lots and lots of prayer), that you just can’t force those things. If a relationship doesn’t come from God and God is not in it, OF COURSE it won’t feel right. God is trying to tell you something when a date (or relationship!) doesn’t go as well as you hoped – He isn’t in it, and that man is not the one for you. I truly learned patience through this process. I learned to trust God and I learned to trust HIS timing.

I feel that so many young ladies settle. They settle for the one they “should” be with according to material matters. They never wait and find the one that was MEANT for them. The one that God made especially for them.

If you are still waiting on your meant-to-be, I encourage you to keep waiting. He’s out there. God has a plan for both of your lives, so the decisions you may make trying to force something that isn’t right will affect not only you, but the man God made for you. I’ll share with you the verse that I clung tightly to during my waiting period.

“Delight yourself in the Lord, and he will give you the desires of your heart.” – Psalm 37:4.

Cling to Jesus during this time. Wrap yourself with His love, stay in His Word, and surround yourself with His people. Your time will come soon enough. Right now, delight yourself in Him, and He will hold true to His promise to you. Your meant-to-be will come and you will KNOW beyond a shadow of a doubt that he is from the Lord. I did. And I am so glad I waited.

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How’s the Married Life?

“So how’s the married life?”

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I wish I could count the number of times I’ve been asked that question over the past two weeks. Each and every time, I smile and say “It’s wonderful! I couldn’t be happier!”

…but then, I am almost always met with the words “Enjoy it while it lasts.”

 

How discouraging, especially for a newlywed. I have waited twenty-eight years for this. I actually had to wait twenty-six years just to meet the man God made for me. Why put a damper on my excitement?

Better yet, why does it have to be this way? Why does the happiness have to end? Why do couples have to grow stagnant and forget why they fell in love with each other in the first place?

 

IT DOESN’T HAVE TO BE THIS WAY.

 

Maybe – just maybe – it goes deeper than that. Maybe couples forget their first true love instead, Jesus. Once they forget to put Jesus in the center of their relationship, everything begins to fall flat. Now, I understand that Jordan and I will hit rough times. I understand that we will get angry with each other and disappoint one another. But I never, ever want to enter into the place of constant bickering and misery that I see so many couples in today. I want to continue to date him. I want to continue to love him more each day. Most importantly, I want to continue to grow together in Christ.

Dear friends, I encourage you that if you are in that stagnant stage, do not grow bitter and spread your unhappiness to others. I ask that you examine your heart and have a real discussion with your spouse to make things right. Marriage is meant to be a beautiful thing. It is a true gift from God, and a gift that I do not intend to take lightly. It may have taken twenty-eight years of patience, but from this point on, the smile I wore on my wedding day never has to leave again.

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“Therefore what God has joined together, let no one separate.” – Mark 10:9

Probiotics: All Health or All Hype?

Just Thrive has provided product for this review. No monetary compensation was provided. All thoughts and opinion are my own.

Just Thrive

As someone who has battled digestive issues for the past few years, I am always a little skeptical when it comes to new “miracle” products. I have tried several probiotics in the past and, for the most part, I’ve been left feeling disappointed and discouraged. When I was offered a sample of Just Thrive probiotic, I had high hopes since all of the reviews I’d read were full of positive feedback, but the twinge of caution remained in the back of my mind.

 

I have been taking Just Thrive for one full week now, and I can already tell a huge difference. Not only have my digestive issues improved, but I have also seen a difference in my skin. I have had keratosis pilaris on the upper part of my arms since I was child and have tried every over-the-counter cream on the market to clear it up to no avail. I have also cut out dairy and gluten from my diet, which helped to lessen the redness to an extent, but not completely. In just one week, I have noticed a drastic change in the appearance of arms. The redness has reduced significantly.

 

As an added bonus, I have noticed my immune system is stronger than before. I have a pretty resilient immune system already from eating clean and incorporating Shakeology into my daily diet. But, I do still get the occasional “summer cold.” Last week, I felt as if I was coming down with one, but I was able to fight it off even though others were sick around me.

 

I am now a firm believer in Just Thrive and will continue to take it daily. I have also been reading great reviews on how this product has helped acid reflux sufferers, and I cannot wait to have my fiancé try it out, too! If you’re looking for a high quality probiotic to include into your routine, definitely give Just Thrive a try!

Healthy Swaps for your Favorite Summer Foods

Happy Friday, friends! For today’s edition of  Friday Favorites, I would love to introduce you to some of my favorite summer foods!

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Growing up in the South, summer was always a special time of year. Swimming in my grandparents pool, eating lots of grilled hamburgers topped with tomatoes straight out of the garden followed by homemade ice cream, and catching lightening bugs in the late afternoon are some of my fondest memories. When I made the decision to get healthier and change my eating habits, I did not want to miss out on the fun times by not being able to eat all of the yummy summer dishes. Thankfully, there are healthy versions of all of the foods I grew up on, and they are still just as delicious!

To download your copy of my 5 Healthy Swaps for you Favorite Summer Foods e-book, just click the link below!

5 Summer Swaps

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Countdown to ‘King’dom

We are less than 60 days away from saying “I Do,” and the craziness is kicking in at full speed! Here are just a few of the exciting updates I have to share along our journey 🙂

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•I listed my house on Thursday, June 30 and an offer was made on it ONE week later. We accepted, and I signed the contract on Monday! Now it’s a mad dash to get my house packed up and everything moved before the closing date!

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•I had my first bridal shower on Sunday, which was hosted by my home church. We received so many wonderful gifts that we can’t wait to use in our new home! It was especially nice to catch up with friends and church family that I do not get to see often. We are blessed beyond measure!

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•Beachbody Summit is in less than TWO weeks, and I am thrilled to get to spend some time with two of my best friends in Music City! We will spend time strategizing for our upcoming VIP Membership group, eating some yummy food (Loveless Cafe, here we come!), and attending conferences on all things health and fitness! It will start Wednesday with PIYO certification with Chalene Johnson herself, and I could not be more excited!!!

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•We have started getting down to the nitty-gritty details concerning the ceremony and reception. We are looking forward to putting our music playlist for the DJ together this weekend. If you have any suggestions on wedding songs to include in the ceremony or favorite dance music for the reception, I’d love to hear them! 😉

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