June 1, 2010 I published the last issue (at least for a while) of Girl Talk my teen girl magazine. Since this blog was originally designed for the purpose of publishing weekly devotions for the magazine and later the magazine itself I decided to create another blog that isn’t connected to Girl Talk.

I’ll probably still publish book reviews or other items here now and again but you’ll more often find me at Trusting Him with Today. I hope you’ll stop by

Feb 25, 2007

There’s power in belief

No one can make you feel inferior without your consent.
Eleanor Roosevelt

As I watched American Idol this season (okay guilty as charged) I was taken aback by the comment the “dreaded” Simon made to Camille, one of the contestants. His comment to her was that she lacked self-esteem and until she really believed that she deserved to be in the competition she would not succeed.

I found this totally surprising because after beating out thousands of contestants to make it into the top twelve you’d think she’d be totally confident in her abilities. Unfortunately, this was not so. A few weeks later Camille became the fourth contestant to be voted of the show. That night even before her name was called she had defeat written all over her. She just couldn't find that self-confidence that she so desperately needed.

Interesting enough, the same night Simon made the comment to Camille he told Jennifer, another contestant that she had gone as far as she could go in the competition. He didn’t even believe she could improve. Jennifer however, did not allow Simon’s comment to become her belief. Week after week she tried to improve her performance and the same night that Camille sang her last song Simon told Jennifer that she had proved him wrong. She was also told that she had given the best performance that night.

Two young ladies, same competition, same opportunity to succeed but one had something extra, belief in herself and in her dream.

Jennifer Hudson nevertheless, did not win the contest. She was the sixth person voted off. But, she was voted of to the dismay of all the judges, even the “dreaded Simon.” Her confidence and belief combined with her talent had taken her further than had been predicted.

What do you believe about yourself? Do you believe that you can do all things through Christ who strengthens you? Or, do you think that everyone else is better than you? If you do you need to change that thinking and BELIEVE IN YOURSELF!

Here’s something I wrote just for you!

Believe in yourself,

Believe in your dreams

Believe that you CAN succeed!

Believe that if you work hard

There’s nothing you can’t do.

There’s power in belief young lady,

Believe that God will make your dreams come true.


I can do ALL things through Christ who strengthens me” Philippians 4:13

Girl Talk Magazine June/August 2004

Vol. 5 Issue #1

I wrote this article for GT magazine two years ago and I thought tonight, when Jennifer Hudson is up for the prestigious Oscar, would be an appropriate time to share it again. There is definitely power in belief!

Feb 13, 2007

The Beauty of Innocence... Forming Friendships

“This was the bestest day ever!

These spontaneous words came from my eight-year-old niece after I’d taken her and an eight-year-old cousin out for the day. The two of them had met briefly before but had never spent anytime together until that day. However by the end of the day they were fast friends.

I wondered what it was that cause children to form friendships so quickly. Then it came to me; it’s their innocence. When children meet each other they are not thinking, “Is she trustworthy? Does she talk a lot? Is she honest…? Or the many other thoughts that come to mind when we form friendships as teens and adults. They simply think, “you’re nice, fun etc. I like you, let’s be friends.

Children are also quick to forgive. I had to brake up a few little squabbles between my niece and cousin during the day but within five minutes they were friends again.

I have found some of the most beautiful expressions of innocence as I watch children develop friendships. Children in their innocence bring friendship down to the simplest form. Is it any wonder Jesus said in his word, "Truly I tell you, unless you change and become like little children, you will never enter the kingdom of heaven? Matt 18:3 NIV

For more thoughts on this week's Carnival of Beauty topic visit Bethany at A Picturesque Life.
Visit Sallie at A Gracious Home

Feb 8, 2007

Let Your Light Shine Part 4

Both girls grew quiet and reflective. They began to realize the importance of light, not a flashlight a candle or a lamp but the inner light that comes from knowing Jesus Christ. They realized that the light that shone from within them could lead someone to choose a better path in life.

How do I let my light shine, you may want to know. Well there are several ways in which you can let your light shine.

Let your light shine by being proud of who you are and the light that is within you. Whatever you are ashamed of you will hide away. You can relate this back to your relationship with God. If you are too intimidated by your friends to let them know that you are a Christian then you will simply try to blend in with them and try to put Jesus into a neat little box in your heart that you only bring out when you're alone. However, your relationship with him should be something that you're proud off, something that you want to show off to the world.

In Matthew 5:14-16 (NIV) Jesus said,
14 "You are the light of the world. A city on a hill cannot be hidden. 15 Neither do people light a lamp and put it under a bowl. Instead they put it on its stand, and it gives light to everyone in the house. 16 In the same way, let your light shine before others, that they may see your good deeds and glorify your Father in heaven.

As Christians God is expecting us to let our light shine. The job of light is to defeat darkness so when you try to hide your light away and try to fit in with your friends you're really not being true to who you are. God didn't call you to blend in, he called you to stand out, to be a true witness for him to win souls for his kingdom.

Let your light shine by setting boundaries for yourself and sticking to them no matter what pressures and temptation you're faced with. As a teenager, I always had set boundaries for myself (along with my parents many rules and regulations). I decided that there were certain things that I was not going to do no matter who was doing it. Consequently, when I was faced with temptation to do something like take a drink for example, it wasn't as difficult to say no as it would have been had I not already made up my mind it was simply something I was not going to do.

Let your light shine by living an exemplary life before your peers and others. This goes back to setting boundaries for yourself. There may be times your peers may pressure you or expect you join them in something that goes against your personal value system. However, if you consistently say no and stand your ground they will respect you for sticking to your beliefs. They may even want to know what it is that makes you different... perfect opportunity to witness.

Remember also that in verse 16 Jesus said:
In the same way, let your light shine before others, that they may see your good deeds and glorify your Father in heaven.

As I emphasized during this series, actions often speak louder than words. So I encourage you to think of some good deeds that you can do that will help draw the people around you who may not know Jesus Christ as lord and savior of their life closer to Him. I remember in high school a classmate taking her free time to help tutor me in Accounting which thanks to her I passed with a pretty decent grade. I also remember another classmate whose Christian walk I was impressed with. I remember that she invited me to a Christian Student Movement meeting and it was there that I accepted Jesus as Lord.

Remember, some people may never enter the doors of a church so their only encounter with Jesus may be through you. Make it a positive one. Take care of the light that is within you. Stay connected to the source Jesus Christ. Take time out of your busy schedule to fast, pray and stay in the word.

Feb 3, 2007

Let Your Light Shine Part 3

Matthew 5:16
Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father which is in heaven.

It seem that no sooner that the words came out of Alicia’s mouth that she saw a bright, steady light in the distance. As the light came closer towards her she heard a voice calling her name...I’m so glad to see you Alicia cried as she hugged them, thank God you had a light because my batteries are dead.

The light you burn is not just for you, your light gives others hope.

In the story Alicia’s light went out. However, K’deidra had a light and because she let her light shine she was able to lead Alicia to safety. It was K’deidra’s light but at that time Alicia needed it more than she did.

I have had more than one experience in my life where I needed someone else light to guide me, to give me hope. None comes to mind so much as a few months ago when my beloved mother died. I was devastated and after only one week off, I had to face a class of 26 fourth graders. I would have been totally unable to cope had it not been for one of my colleagues stepping in. She took over everything except my classroom duties. She made sure all of my copies were made, she did most of the final exams for the grade level, she even spoke to my students when their behavior was more than I could handle. Everything she could do to assist me she did, without ever having to be asked or even expecting thanks. This went on for at least two months until I slowly began to come out of my grief stricken state.

At that time my friend didn't try to help me with a lot of comforting words, that wasn't what I really needed at that time. I knew my mom was home with Jesus, but I was missing her here on earth. My friend let her light shine by relieving me of whatever burdens she could so I was able to do what I had to do. At that time I needed the light that she let shine into my life. It ministered to me, soothe me and let me know that someone cared.

This is what God requires of us as Christians. We are to be an example of Jesus Christ here on earth not just by our words but by our deeds as well. We do this by letting our light shine where ever there is a need and trying to influence the world around us in a positive way while not allowing ourselves to be influenced in a negative way. As the world watches us and sees the life that we are living then it will draw them to Jesus Christ.

Stay tuned for part 4

part 1
Part 2

Feb 1, 2007

Let Your Light Shine, Part 2

Read part 1 here

Life Lessons from the story Alicia's Light

Quotes in italics are from the story Alicia's Light in Part 1

"As the evening grew darker Alicia became more and more afraid. She was totally lost and had no idea which direction to turn. ... Consequently, Alicia ended up missing her turn to K’deidra’s house and walking down a dark deserted looking area. "

1. Good people can sometimes end up in bad situations.

Alicia had been to her friend’s house many times before but that one night she got lost. She also thought she was prepared in case of an emergency, but she wasn’t. When she really needed it to, her light did not shine.

What about you? As teens and young people there are many times you may feel that you are prepared to handle a lot of situations that may arise in your life. However, there may be times when the situation may be beyond you. For example you may hang around with friends who do not have the same values as you. They may encourage you to drink, swear or participate in whatever they’re doing and you may say no nine times out of ten. But, what about that one time when you’re not strong enough and you give in? You had been strong around your friends all along but that one time you got distracted, you wanted to fit in so you gave in.

There are times you may feel that you are prepared for something but you may not be as ready as you think. For instant the big debate these days among young people is that they want more freedom, they want to date, they want to enjoy life. However, can you handle the freedom? Are you as strong, as prepared as you think you are?

“Oh my goodness" Alicia thought to herself, "I forgot to check my batteries and they’re dead. What am I going to do?"

2. Be sure to evaluate yourself every now and again

Alicia had a flashlight, she was certain that she was prepared in case of an emergency. Unfortunately, when she needed her light it was of no use to her because her battery was dead, she had not checked her light. How often do you evaluate yourself? Do you check yourself to see how strong your beliefs and values are? Can your beliefs and value system stand the test of peer pressure? Do you evaluate yourself to see if you have strong boundaries for yourself? If you wait until you’re faced with peer pressure and other temptation before you try to set boundaries or decide what you will and will not do you would have already lost the battle.

"Jesus help me!” Alicia cried, tears streaming down her cheeks. I’m scared, I don’t know what to do help me.”

3. When you're in trouble seek help.

In the story when Alicia realize that she was lost and that she really couldn’t get herself out of the situation she called for help, in that situation she called on God. Who do you call to when you need help? There are some situations you will find yourself in as a young person that will be totally beyond your capabilities. However you have choices, you can stay in it and let it totally overwhelm you or you can get help. God has placed people in your life who are capable of helping you to get through any situation you may find yourself in but, it’s up to you to utilize that help. If you hold your problems to your chest no one can help you.

Check back on Saturday for Part 3

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