27 My Birthday Wish: Everyone make an ARK today!

Act of Random Kindness

Thank y’all so much for the birthday wishes and blessings. I am so thankful for my family and friends. 27 wow! I’ve grown so much as a person. I used to be so shy and timid. I remember crying, when my parents made me go play with other kids. Now, especially this last year, I have become confident with my, voice, actions, and what I want with life. I am healthy and ready to spread the love of God to others. I know everything doesn’t always workout the way you plan it, but it’s still God’s plan and I give him all my love and trust. So, friends and family…y’all know I am very big on “paying it forward.” I said “I” so many times in this article. For my birthday wish I ask everyone to make an ARK today.

An Act of Random Kindness.

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It’s no secret that I’ve faced and over come some traumatizing obstacles. Without a few, ARKs I’ve experienced I may have lost all hope. So whether you’re religious or not everyone go pay it forward today and make an act of random kindness. The tiniest act can make a world of a difference in the big picture. And again, thank y’all for all the birthday love!

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Music Ministry Monday: Pray for those that hurt us

Today’s already January 19th! For me, it seems, everything has changed just as fast as time is passing this year. Of course, somethings don’t turn out the way we want them to. Some choice words were said to me, in avoidance of another subject. These words, man oh man, they sure like to linger in my thoughts. They suggest I compromise my morals. Every now and then, resurfacing, my sight blurring as emotional feelings start to take over, and the tears start building. I want to break, yell and scream, “what is wrong with you? I am a person, I have feelings, I am someone’s sister, someone’s daughter, someone’s granddaughter, someone’s cousin, someone’s relative! How about put one of your relatives in my shoes. My shoes that feel heavy from the weight of disrespect and disappointment.” Instead, I sigh, hold back on those water works and let out a prayer.

This prayer is not for me, it starts for the person that said those words, then grows to everyone that intentionally inflict a negative emotion or mannerism to another person. First, for forgiveness, then for peace to their hearts. Fitting, that today we, honor and remember Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. On my drive to work this morning, I heard an excerpt of a speech he gave on why not to be violent. He said

“pray for your enemies, pray for those that hurt you […] rather a scarred body than a scarred soul.”

Other quotes I’ve seen today,

“the ultimate measure of a man is not where he stands in moments of comfort and convenience, but where he stands at times of challenge and controversy,” and “let no man pull you low enough to hate him,” and “I have decided to stick with love. Hate is too great a burden to bear.”

Unfortunately, in my disappointment and heat of the moment I did utter the word hate. So I apologize and pray for my own peace.

Going into my third week of the K-Love 30 day challenge, “Broken Together” by Casting Crowns, is a somber song with an insightful message of truth. It’s lyrics unfold a story of understanding your own and another’s brokenness and then moving forward with faith.

Also, “Words,” by Hawk Nelson reiterates that message to speak with the love and grace of God.

“Words can build you up words can break you down. Start a fire in your heart or put it out. Let my words be life let my words be truth. I don’t wanna say a word unless it points the world back to You.”

I joke with my friends, and call it “Regina George” syndrome. Yep, “Regina George,” from the movie “Mean Girls.” It’s a terrible thing, that I really don’t understands , how cruel and unpleasant some people can be. While people like, In this older article I wrote , and some these random ones I found online,

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taunt others, I pray for them. Whatever has them so broken or hurt, whether intentionally or medically the can’t help it, I sincerely pray they find peace. And I ask everyone reading to join me in this not so typical prayer.

I strive to be as much of a disciple of Christ, as possible, but I am not perfect. I have flaws, and sins, I am human. When those emotions and words start to cloudy my thought, I throw my hands up to God. As a Catholic, a Christian, a follower of Christ, we are supposed to live, not by feelings but, by faith.

 “The Lord gives his people strength. The Lord blesses them with peace. Psalm 29:11

Austin feeling a little more like home: Catholic Young Professionals Happy Hour

Say what? Yep, you read that right! Austin, Texas is starting to feel a little more like home.

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Austin is an interesting city, I was captivated with the live music, delicious eats, and all the new things to explore. Very quickly, after moving here, I was over it. The long lines, traffic and very strongly opinionated hipsters every where. Hardly anyone living here is actually from Austin, or even Texas. For this born and raised San Antonio, Texas girl, it has definitely been a learning cultural shock experience. Some of my co-workers tell me “this is Austin, not Texas.” Well, I sass right back to them ” Bless your heart, since Austin is in Texas, I guess by your logic, that makes Texas even better.”

If you’ve read any of my previous articles, you read of my homesickness and how much I miss the community. Well, remember that St. Ignatius retreat I went the other day? There was also announcement about a Catholic Young Professionals happy hour. I mentioned it to my friend, Vanessa, and we decided to go ahead and check it out.

Upon running toward the entrance of the W Hotel to escape the cold, we noticed a pretty big crowd in the window. I mentioned to Vanessa that the group we’re looking for is probably a lot smaller. But after wondering around, we found out that large group was actually the Catholic Young Professionals happy hour group. My heart jumped for joy! As we mixed and mingled I was so excited to meet so many people, a community, that shares the same faith.

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Prayer to St. Joseph the workman, was recited in a great warming unison.

O Glorious St. Joseph, model of all those who are devoted to labor, obtain for me the grace to work conscientiously, putting the call of duty above my natural inclinations, to work with gratitude and joy, in a spirit of penance for the remission of my sins, considering it an honor to employ and develop by means of labor the gifts received from God, to work with order, peace, moderation and patience, without ever shrinking from weariness and difficulties, to work above all with purity of intention and detachment from self, having always death before my eyes and the account that I must render of time lost, of talents wasted, of good omitted, of vain complacency in success, so fatal to the work of God. All for Jesus, all through Mary, all after thine example, O Patriarch, St. Joseph. Such shall be my watch-word in life and in death. Amen

This was followed by an exciting announcement, of the Emerging Leaders Program. Applications will need to be submitted by January 30, 2015. Candidates selected will have the opportunity to meet and learn with leaders in different occupations  and learn to excercise their faith. Kind of reminded of the Marianist LIFE camp (minus the actual camp) from high school. I am definitely interested in applying.  The rest of the time was spent with a little more mixing and mingling. I learned about other churches in the area I have not attended, but mostly excited about this communtiy.

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More information can be found on their Facebook Group:Young Catholic Leaders in Austin

Music Ministry Monday: “Something Beautiful”

Good Day y’all! It’s Monday and the weather isn’t so great outside. My pup and I definitely didn’t want to get out of bed, but you know the world continues on. image

Last week I started the K-Love 30 day challenge, listening to Christian music for 30 days straight. It’s actually a challenge I take every year. I find it just a great way to start my new year off with positive thoughts and God in my heart. So far one of my favorite songs is “Something Beautiful,” by Steven Curtis Chapmam.

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In the song, Chapman, tells a story of something most people experience in life. A story of having a plan that doesn’t always turn out how you want it to. Through a catchy lyrics he explains we need to trust in God,

“so put it all in the hands of the Father. Give it up, give it all over to the only one who can turn it into something beautiful, something really beautiful”

This weekend I had an opportunity to attend St. Ignatius’s Young Professionals retreat. It was short, just Saturday afternoon, but time well spent. The Deacon had us read a few different verses and then had create a Spirituality Timeline. Asking us to think back and write our story, events, relationships, moments, challenged, sadness, happiness that define us. Ultimately, answering, if you were God, how would you see yourself or describe yourself?

Our small group discussion really opened my eyes to the fact that pretty much everyone feels lost sometimes, but eventually when you look back even as crazy aimages things may have been or may still be, it is something beautiful God already planned for us. Of course,

“For I know the thoughts that I think over you, says the Lord: thoughts of peace and not of affliction, so that I may give you patience and an end,” Jeremiah 29:11

Detox Water: Refresh

Since it’s the start of a new year, and I certainly ate my fill of holiday fest food, I decided some detox water is necessary. For this simple and delicious recipe, I used Strawberries, Lemons, and Fresh Mint Leaves.

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Strawberries help replenish vitamins, and also contains anti-aging properties that helps with healthy skin.

Lemons help get your digestive track going and aid in cleaning out toxins

Mint help soothe stomach cramps and also aids in smoother digestion.

Simple, refreshing, and cleansing. Enjoy

Hello 2015 Inspire: The Best Is Yet To Come

Last night I said goodbye to the year 2014. I have to say it was a pretty good year. Saw snow for the first time, learned how to snow board, attended Music Fest 2014 in a never endings blizzard. Quickly learned I don’t like cold snowy weather.

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Started a new job, with one of the top tech companies. Finally moved into my studio and started living on my own … with no roommates. At first, all the changes were exciting and happening so fast. It was exhilarating becoming independent. You know, having my own place, doing whatever I wanted, not worrying about having pants or bras on, going to concerts and on hikes weekly, and paying my own BILLZ.

Austin is a great weird city, but after a few months of living here, I realized I was over the allure of the weirdness. Homesickness kicked in for tradition, rich culture, family and friends. Even though I mostly work Monday through Friday 9am to 6pm, I’m busy the entire time. I planned my grandma’s 80th birthday celebration from Austin.

In mid September I finally went home for a weekend to celebrate a few birthdays. I was really surprised how encouraging my friends and family were. They reminded me of all the hardships I went through, and that it was great that I was able to get away to make a better living for myself. Hearing those encouraging words from friends, and family helped me push through my homesickness. Occasionally, the homesick blues come and go.

One special person, really turned around my thoughts towards relationships, this year. If you’ve read some of my previous post, you’d know I run for the hills away from them. This person has been one of my best friends, can match my wit, but also encourages me to do my best in whatever I do. He’s by far the hardest working person I know and his success shows it. I admire him and I am also inspired. You know that phrase “don’t get to busy making a living, that you forget to make a life.” Although those last couple of months, of 2014, were probably his toughest for work, some how he managed to say hi to close friends and family every now and then.

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So going into 2015, I review some of my stats for this blog and I noticed some of the most viewed articles are about my faith. This year one thing I am focusing this blog on is to inspire. My Faith is what makes me who I am. Every article I write or picture board I post will be to inspire others. Not everything will be about faith, some about Texas, music, arts, culinary, and fashion. I encourage everyone to explore and find what ignites their passions and inspires them.

Every I take K-Love’s 30 day Challenge: To listen to nothing but Christian music for 30 days. It’s a great time of reflection and revelations for me. Some of my previous articles reveal a little about some of the hardships I have endured, over the years, and every year this challenge reminds me that walking by faith with God in my heart, I will overcome.

My job allows others inspiration to come true and sometimes make a good huge impact on the world or just for a one person. That inspires me to do my best in my work. Since I’m contracted one of my goals is to get directly hired. If that does workout, my alternate plan is to find a job back home in San Antonio. My family is everything to me and I never realized how close i was with them.

As you can probably see started writing this a few days ago and picked it up again today. Either way, hello 2015 my year to inspire.