30 Days of Gratitude Challenge + Free Gratitude Journal | #GratefulGlow

Faded Fall (1)

Can we get real for a second? Something I truly struggle with is being grateful for where I am in life, what I have in life, and the plan God has for my life. In a world that revolves around social media, it can be really challenging to be thankful for where you are on your journey and the various blessings God has given you.

There was a point where I was so unhappy almost everyday because any time I got on my phone or was out running errands or even at work, I was finding something that someone else had that I didn’t. This made me feel like I needed to get those things so that I can finally “make it in life” or to find happiness. Can you guess what happened?

I went out and bought those things that other people had and yeah in the moment I felt SO COOL..but then a couple days or weeks pass by and I was on to saying “oh I need this and then I will be happy” – again, and again, and again. It was a never ending cycle. I was completely and totally driven by this world, that I forgot what it meant to find happiness in God. I forgot what it was like to enjoy the journey that I was on without a care for what people thought of how I dressed or what material things I owned. Not only was I unhappy, but I was making those around me unhappy by my constant complaining about ‘not having this’ or ‘I need that’..

I am so thankful to God for the people he has placed in my life to help bring me back down to reality and show me that material things aren’t what give me happiness and fulfillment.. only God can truly do that for me. So I committed myself to starting everyday by doing my Bible study and writing in my gratitude journal. I would write down 5 things that I was grateful for, coming up with something new each day. From the simple things like “my morning cup of coffee” to bigger things like “having a roof over my head”, but all things that I had begun to take for granted.

Now, I’m not perfect and will never claim to be – I still have my days where thoughts start to creep into my mind like “I need these new pants – girl #TreatYoSelf” but then I am quickly brought back down to reality and I simply thank God for the clothes he has already provided me with, above and beyond what is truly needed. I have noticed a huge change in my mindset and happiness, and I want to share that with y’all because sharing is caring 😉

I have created a 30 day gratitude challenge that will help to refocus and re-frame your mindset to what truly matters in life, and to help you be grateful for the life that God has blessed you with. If you are interested in joining this challenge with me (yes girl, I’m doing it too because you can never be too grateful!), then simply click here to download the journal!

This printable gratitude journal is complete with a little inspirational story from me, a journal page for each day of the challenge so that you can write down your gratitude and pray over it AND daily verses to give you that extra little boost when Ulta sends you that email saying they have 30% off your favorite brands and you know the Lord is testing you because the last thing you need is another eye shadow palette.. Oh, was that a little too real?? My bad.. But you get the picture 🙂

I hope that you will join me on this challenge so that you experience the changes in your mindset and overall contentment with life, just like I have. Let’s get our #GratefulGlow on boo ❤

xo, Bri

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a note for the girl who is hurting

You are not alone – God is with you always. He is your rock. Your steady hand. Your should to cry on. Lean on Him and let Him carry you to solid ground.

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“I can do all this through him who gives me strength” {Philippians 4:13}

How could this happen? Why is this happening to me? What have I done to deserve this?

Sound familiar? I’ve been there too. You’ve been dealt a card that you didn’t want and definitely didn’t ask for, and you feel like it can’t get any worse. The weight seems unbearable. You may cry and scream. You may even feel broken. But you aren’t.

You are strong.

God has a plan, and even though you don’t know what it is you can rest assured that it is nothing short of perfect. He never promised easy. He never promised a life without hurt and pain. But He did promise perfect. He promised His perfect plan in exchange for your ultimate trust in Him.

So let go and let God. Let God work on your behalf. Let him transform your hurt into something breathtakingly beautiful. Don’t make it harder on yourself, but surrender everything to Him who is there with you every step of the way. Let Him take the burden so that you can feel light and free to live each and every day glorifying Him.

xo, Bri

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How could this happen to me?

I had been injured before. I had played through the pain. But this was unlike anything else.

It’s the start of the season and I was in my element. Enjoying every minute of being back on the court. That was until the third set of our first home match on September 8th, 2015. I get thrown in the game and I am as anxious as can be. I finally get set the ball. I jump in the air ready to kill it. I make contact. and I land back on the ground.

All I will ever remember from that day is the intense popping I felt in my knee as my foot made contact with the ground. One. Two. Three pops and all I can think to do is fall backwards and scream in complete agony.

“You’re going to need your ACL repaired. You will be out for the rest of the season.”

Words I never expected to hear. Me? Needing knee surgery? But I have never had knee problems like that!

One excruciating surgery later and I am finding a new home at the physical therapists office. And I hated every minute of it. I hated the pain. I hated the crutches. I hated the scar that now covered the length of my knee on my right leg. I hated the fact that this happened to me. How could this happen to me? 

I sat at home and felt sorry for myself. And I cried. I cried out to God asking Him why He let this happen to me? And then I cried out to Him even more when I felt like He wasn’t answering me. I was angry.

I would get letters and get well soon cards with warm wishes for a “speedy recovery” and to “trust in God’s plan” but I couldn’t understand why I should trust His plan when He couldn’t even tell me why this happened in the first place?! This continued for months as I went to and from physical therapy, sat at home, watched TV, and shouted at God for letting this happen to me when things had been going so well!

I finally stopped yelling and I started grumbling. And then my grumbles turned into half-hearted prayers asking Him to take my pain away.

And then it clicked. He wanted my attention. But I had to stop running away from Him. His goal wasn’t to push me away. It was to pull me closer to Him so He could show me just how much I really needed Him. And I did..but not until Fall of last year.

I had still been having issues with my knee, had gone in for a second procedure, was still going to physical therapy, and had yet to find relief for my pain over a year later. Until one day I broke down. As tears streamed from my eyes, prayers poured out from my heart asking for God’s help. Asking for Him to heal me. Telling Him how much I needed Him.

I finally took my focus off of my pain and put it on Him. The one thing He was wanting me to do all along.

God doesn’t want us to focus on the things of this world…they are fleeting. But His kingdom is forever! Just like Paul wrote in 2 Corinthians 4:16-18, when we focus on Him our spirit is being renewed each day even though we are growing older on the outside. We will go through trials but they are only momentary and have nothing on the eternal glory that is waiting for us! We simply have to stop focusing on ourselves and what is going with us in this world and put our focus back on God.

Now, I’m not saying that you should stop showing up to work or quit doing your homework assignments, but the emphasis we place on the newest iPhone or the cutest clothes or even the struggles that we have should be far less than the emphasis we place on God and His Kingdom. If we shift our focus, He will give us the strength to get through our troubles and He will provide our every need like Christ says in Matthew 6:33 “But first seek his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well”..

I hope that my story was an encouragement for you and that you continue to seek God and His Kingdom no matter what season you may be in. Place your focus on Him and watch how your life transforms.. I would love to hear from you and how God used a difficult time in your life to pull you back to Him so make sure to leave a comment below! And don’t forget to subscribe so that you don’t miss another post!

Until next time..

Kat

I thought this would be easy…

“Oh that comes so easily for me, I really don’t have to try”

I can’t even keep track of how many times I have said this very statement, and it’s multiple variations..

It’s like I have lost touch with what it means to work hard for something. To have your sights set on a dream and give it your all to achieve. You see, I have fallen into this mindset of life is good when things come easily. But when something is challenging and it requires hardwork and effort, I go running for the hills – not returning until a later date when it won’t take as much of my time and energy.

It’s pretty sad, but it’s the truth. I could sugar coat things and make myself seem like this glorious person, but what good does that do?

The truth is, I thought this would be easy for me. When I started this blog, I was so excited! I was ready to share my thoughts and journey with you all, and ultimately bring others to know Christ. But then I realized how much time and effort goes into making sure my posts are done on time and are being shared on social media. In addition to making sure that I am truly living the life that I sharing with you all…I started to feel discouraged because it wasn’t coming easily for me..

I’m not perfect and will never claim to be.

There are days when I miss my bible study. There are days when I fail to pray to God during the times that I should. I get frustrated. I get discouraged. And there are days when my spirit tank is running on E. But that isn’t God’s fault.

I thought because I wasn’t able to pump out a blog post in 20 minutes or less, I was failing. I was no longer inspired. God didn’t want to use me anymore.

All of these lies were flooding my brain and I believed every single one of them. And this ultimately led to a downward spiral which can be simplified to: it wasn’t coming easily for me so I should just run away from it. I was being a coward….

David & Goliath. A story most of us have known since we were children. This little tiny kid kills this big giant – all with this little, bitty stone. It was Philistines v. Israelites and Goliath was team Philistine. When he came out for battle he was rocking all this fancy, bronze armor – as if his height of 9ft wasn’t intimidating enough.  He walks out and shouts to the Israelites to send someone out to fight him. He wagers that if the Israelite can defeat him, then the Philistines will become their servants, but if the Israelite gets defeated by him then they will become the Philistine’s servants.

Yeah, I’m sure we would all go sprinting towards the chance to knockout some giant, right? NOT.

That’s exactly what happened. Saul and the Israelites got scared and knew that they would be defeated in a split second. Meanwhile David gets sent on an errand by his Dad and just so happens to walk up on the crowd that had gathered to see the showdown between Goliath and some brave soul. Fast forward a bit and David is telling Saul that he can defeat Goliath just like he defeated bears and lions protecting his sheep. Saul, lacking all faith in David, sends him to meet the beast. He attempts to put him in a set of armor but David is not quite big or strong enough to handle the extra weight so he tosses them aside and takes his sling and 5 stones to battle.

As you could guess Goliath is laughing to himself as David walks over to fight him. But this story is inspiring because David wasn’t discouraged. And he definitely wasn’t a coward. He knew that this wouldn’t be easy but he kept going – he never turned back. And the most inspiring part of it all comes in verse 47: “….for the battle is the Lord’s and he will give all of you into our hands”.

David was successful because he didn’t turn his back. He pursued the Giant and trusted in God to take care of the rest!

So now, as I find things that come up in my everday doings…I think to myself – if David can trust in God to help him defeat a 9ft Giant, I can trust in God to help me with my not-so-9ft Giants. If we put forth the effort, God will see it through. Whatever daunting, energy sucking, effort taking task we have in front of us that might be, in our opinion: discouraging, hard, or just down right not fun – give it to God for it is His battle and He will give all of that task into our hands. But we have to change our mindset from “this is too much work so lets just give up” to “this is going to be a lot of work but I know that God is in control”.

So I challenge you this week…face your giants. And I promise that I will too.

I hope that you found this post to be an encouragement and if you did, please share it with someone else! Spread the love and encouragement so that we can all be the light

XOXO,

Kat

P.S. don’t forget to like, comment, and subscribe so you don’t miss another post! and go follow me on all of my social media accounts where I post daily encouragement!

 

Rolling Around in My Own Self-Pity

I’ll admit..when things aren’t going the way that I had planned or life feels as if it is falling apart, I shut down. Instead of automatically reaching out to my Heavenly Father, I give into the temptation of feeling sorry for myself.

“It’s all messed up”, “I will never get it right”, “I suck”, etc…

Phrases that leave my mouth a little to frequently. But it gets worse. Not only do I shut down and feel sorry for myself, but I shut out those who are trying to help me realize that everything will be okay. 

When I get into the deep, deep trenches of my own self-pity, this is when I begin to believe the lies of satan. He tells me that I didn’t deserve to get that job, that I am unworthy of happiness, that my friends are better off without me. I start to believe him and these lies start playing in a loop in my head. Repeating over and over until I have successfully avoided everyone trying to tell me otherwise.

It’s funny how one thing going wrong can spur a week of “nothing ever goes my way”. Your mind becomes so focused on what is wrong that you can no longer see what is right. Constantly complaining about what you don’t have instead of looking at what you do have (see my previous post here). My mindset becomes so distorted that I start blaming myself for things that I have zero control over!

Do you find yourself feeling this way? Like nothing ever works out in your favor? Do you believe the lies that satan is telling you? If you are, then stop. I know it’s easier said than done, but we have to stop feeling sorry for ourselves. What good has it done us? I can tell you personally, it has only made my situations worse.

If you start to feel sorry for yourself, ask yourself “was this something I had control over?”. Last week I had an exam for one of my classes that I felt I had truly prepared myself for and was confident that it would be a cake walk. Went into class, got the exam and instantly started to beat myself up because I had already identified about 5 questions that I was unsure of. I tried to calm down my anxiety so that I could focus on the exam and I did the best that I could with the knowledge that I had. I did the BEST that I could.

It’s as simple as that, if you do all that you can in your power and you give whatever situation it is your absolute best, then stop believing the lies telling you that you didn’t! When I pity myself, I fail to stop and simply talk to God about what it is that I am going through. He wants to hear from us! He wants us to call on Him! But He also wants us to stop pushing away those who are trying to help us.

NEWS FLASH: God uses those who are close to us to help encourage us! So instead of pushing away that friend who is trying to tell you that it will be okay and they are proud of you for the hard work that you did put in, listen to what they have to say and let them pray for you! You will feel so much better doing this instead of feeling sorry for yourself!

But also know that I am praying for you, that you may be able to change your mindset and kick the lies of satan to the curb! I know it isn’t easy, and this something that I struggle with too but it is nice to know that you have someone you can struggle with. Know that we can overcome these feelings of sorrow and self pity, and we will come out even stronger!

I challenge you, if you find yourself in a self-pity party, stop for a moment and be thankful for what has worked out in your favor, and realize what you do have is far greater than what you don’t.

1 Thessalonians 5:18 “Give thanks in all circumstances, for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus”

Don’t forget to comment, like, and subscribe so that you don’t miss any of my future posts! And if this has been an inspiration to you, please share it – you never know who might be in need! 🙂

XOXO,

Kat

Leaving My Comfort Zone

Have you ever been afraid to step out and do something you typically wouldn’t do? I have been like that multiple times. A sense of sheer fear that I would be judged, ridiculed, mocked, you name it. But then, one message changed my heart.

“…the Lord is with you, mighty warrior” {Judges 6:12}

In Judges 6, the Israelites are calling out to God to rescue them from Midianites. An angel of the Lord came down to Gideon where he was working to hide crops from the Midianites so that his people might have something to eat. The angel approached him and said those very words “…the Lord is with you, mighty warrior” {Judges 6:12}.

Gideon went on to question this message he has just received, stating that if God was really with them, then why was this happening? The Lord then tells Gideon to go and save Israel! So Gideon is like what? Do you not see how weak my people are? There is no possible way we could save Israel! I mean, I can’t really blame Gideon because I would be a little shaken up myself if God just up and told me to go save the country! Why would he trust me, of all people, with that task? The mere thought of that is uncomfortable…But the Lord reassures Gideon that he will be with him and they will accomplish what they are setting out to do together.

This message is so powerful to me and I try to reference it whenever I feel like I am being pulled out of my comfort zone to do something that I know I should be doing. It reminds me that the Lord will call on us to do certain things for Him, but we have to trust and believe that He won’t just call on us and then leave us! Because just like He was with Gideon, He will do the same for us: he will be with us and we will accomplish it together. It doesn’t get much more powerful than that!

If you look at Joshua 1:9, it says “Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous. Do not be frightened, and do not be dismayed, for the Lord your God is with you wherever you go“. We have to be able to step out in confidence knowing that God has our backs at all times. I will be honest and say that I have struggled with reaching out to others and inviting them to church or simply asking them if they know of Jesus Christ. I clam up and fear that they will get upset or offended. But I am continuing to get better at this because I know that this is something I should be doing as a child of God. We are supposed to encourage others and bring them to know Christ! And now when I go to speak to someone, I know that God is still with me and He will give me the words to say.

I took a huge step out of my comfort zone in starting this blog. I have never been a fan of writing and I didn’t know if anyone would actually read it. Even though it has been challenging, God has been with me every step of the way and this is something that I have to remind myself of when I feel discouraged or I don’t know what I am supposed to say. God is meeting me where I am to help me get to where I need to be. And He will do the same for you!

I hope that you were able to find encouragement in this post and if you did, please make sure to like, comment, and subscribe to my blog so that you get notified about my future posts..

As you continue on with the rest of your week, continue to remind yourself that God is right there with you every step of the way! And as always, continue to be the light 

XOXO,

Kat

Getting a Fresh Start

We wait for a new year, new birthday, new month, heck we even wait until “tomorrow” to start fresh, but why not just do what we are supposed to do from the beginning?

We often say “Oh yeah I’m gonna start being nicer tomorrow” or “I’m gonna start praying next Monday, this week is just going too be rough so I don’t really have the time” or my personal favorite, and one that I find myself saying too often “I have so much that I have to do so something has to go, I will just find time another day to read my Bible because that can wait“…

Well we say “tomorrow”, “next week”, “next month”, “some random Tuesday in July” but when that time rolls around, we continue the cycle of excuses… soon enough, these excuses begin to take over our lives and we no longer realize what we are doing..it’s normal for us to say these things and not really think about the consequences.

So here’s the deal.

Regardless of the fact that it’s a new day, month, year, etc. life goes on. However, each day is a gift and we must make the most of that day. Each new day is an opportunity to be better than the day before. We have to be diligent in what we do and continuously give thanks and praise to our Heavenly Father! Each day should be a mission to seek His face and follow His word.

In Ecclesiastes 11:5-6 it says that we can’t understand the works of God and that many things are left unknown, but even in that unknown we shouldn’t stop working. We need to continue sowing our seed and “let not your hands be idle” because we don’t know which seed will bring forth success or not.

To me, this means that even if we are unsure of what the future may hold, we should:

  1. Trust in the Lord to provide for us and lead us in the right direction
  2. Continue to work in preparation of what may be ahead of us by doing what we have been taught from the word of God

So why are we waiting until tomorrow to see what God has in store for us or, if you are pessimistic, what disaster may be coming your way. Instead prepare yourself by doing what is right and good based on the word of God, and strengthening yourself through reading his word and staying in communication with him (yes, I mean praying).

For example, I am about to graduate in a couple of months and I don’t know what the Lord has in store for me right after graduation. There is a lot of unknown in this situation, but I am preparing myself for what may happen. I can’t just wait around for God to give me a job; He is a very practical God. So, I am applying to jobs and going to interviews, all while still trusting that He will place me in the job that is the best fit for me.

In Proverbs 28:19-20 it states “He who works his land will have abundant food, but the one who chases fantasies will have his fill of poverty. A faithful man will be richly blessed, but one eager to get rich will not go unpunished”.

We need to be working our “land” and remember that “The sluggard craves and gets nothing, but the desires of the diligent are fully satisfied” {Proverbs 13:4}. We also need to stay faithful to God who is good and will, in due time, bless us abundantly.

So the next time you think “I will start looking for a new job tomorrow” or “I will start my bible study next week”, ask yourself “why wait until tomorrow to start what you could today”. Something that really struck me in a sermon one Sunday was “the Word is action oriented, therefore we must live “miracle”, not expect “miracle” to happen”, so don’t wait to just be handed that new job or wait until your time is right but actively sow your seed and pursue God!

I hope that you found this inspiring and you will begin to actively pursue God and His will for you. It isn’t easy, trust me I know, but it is well worth the reward. Please comment below something that you have found to be continuously pushing back until “next ” whenever, and let me know how you plan on changing that..

Don’t forget to like, share, and subscribe to my blog so that you don’t miss any of my future posts!

As always,

be the light