Archive | Relationships RSS feed for this section

“She Laughs without fear of the future” Proverbs 31:25

11 Jan

These words hit me like a slap in the face.  As I sat on my bed, overwhelmed with wedding planning, these words jumped off the wall at me.  The verse “She is clothed with strength and dignity, and she laughs without fear of the future” is printed on wall art that hangs above the desk in my bedroom.

It’s so easy to get caught up in the worry and fear of what could happen, what might not work out and what could go wrong with wedding plans, marriage preparations, and marriage itself.  It’s so easy to get lost in the stress and caught up in the fears of something going wrong.

BUT.

The Holy Spirit stopped me quick in my tracksHe asked me to trust in GodTrust God radically and like none other.  Because when we put all of our trust in God, and trust in HIS POWER and HIS PLANS, and when we do our part to carry out God’s work in our lives, when we are STILL. AND KNOW THAT HE IS GOD (and that we are imperfect and yet perfectly imperfect wonderful human beings), God is glorified.  If we allow the fear and worry to grip our minds, and when we allow the fear to creep in and take ahold of our otherwise peaceful lives, the glory is taken from God.  God does not want that.

God asks us to Trust Him for His plans are greater than ours, and when we sense that peace leaving our hearts, we must remind ourselves that God is in control.  We don’t have to be the conductor for the orchestra that directs every instrument.  We have to be that one single instrument that plays that one part, and the conductor, God, will take care of the rest.

I worry about not having enough time for planning and organizing everything for our wedding.  I worry about not having a house yet.  The fear of the future causes my head to spin “what if this happens?” “what if that happens?”  About every imaginable fear and worry runs through my head.

But for what?

What it boils down to is a lack of trust in God’s plans for my future (Jeremiah 29:11.)

My fiancé B. and I have taken classes regarding fertility and cycles, and we’ve read about St. John Paul’s II’s Theology of the Body, and we have been living as single people.  We have read books on good marriages and gotten advice from fantastic couples, and have prayed so many prayers for our future marriage.  And still I have this fear of the future.  I have been charting and watching my cycles and trying to remember to take my vitamins, exercise when I can, etc.  I dream of having children and being a wife and mother.  Oftentimes when I think of being able to be a mother someday, it makes me cry just thinking about it – in a good way – because I want it so badly.  I pray that we can have children – children who are healthy, happy and holy.  I need to trust God.

B. and I, like every other couple on the planet, are not perfect.  We mis-communicate, misunderstand each other, and assume instead of talk through things.  I am afraid of the “honeymoon phase” wearing off and “getting used to” each other.  We don’t want to ever take each other for granted.  But we do forget to say and do those things that show each other how much we love and cherish each other.  Does that mean we are failures?  No.  It means that we are human.  And thankfully, we can step back, look at the situation after the fact, and laugh at ourselves. 

“We are clothed with strength and dignity, and we laugh without fear of the future.”

Join us!

Advertisements

Three Reasons to be thankful this season – and some thrilling news!!!

24 Nov

pecan-pie-2

(My first pecan pie was a success!  Ps., I kinda cheated and bought the crust, but the rest is all home-made.  YUM!!)

With Thanksgiving Day just hours away, I’m sitting surrounded by clean laundry waiting to be put away, running shoes, books, and card-making supplies.  I feel overwhelmed, but in the peaceful sense of the term.  My heart is overwhelmed with grace and gratitude.  The rain is trickling down from the trees outside, cars rush by splashing through puddles, and the scent of baking lingers in my kitchen.  There is a certain quietness in the air and my heart thanks my Creator for this peaceful moment.

This holiday season might already be filled with cheer, or perhaps not, but either way, allow me to share with you three reasons you should allow yourself to be thankful this season:

  1. In choosing to focus on what we have instead of what we don’t have, we find our attitudes and perspectives shift immensely.  We have more peace and less stress by our attitude of gratitude.
  2. Blessings surround us.  I may have a lot to accomplish around the house (laundry, dishes, bills, etc.) but I can’t complain.  I have a washer and dryer, money to pay the bills, and warm house, a roof over my head.  The world is a messy, crazy place to be, but God has filled it with family, friends, the beauty of nature, stunningly beautiful architecture, great music and delicious food.  We all have our dislikes and annoyances, but that’s expected and that’s okay.  There is so much good to focus on in the world and so much good happening, that rather than zooming in on the craziness, let’s zoom in our focus on the blessings and the goodness that we would otherwise miss if we didn’t stop to look around.
  3. We have a God who loves us – each and every single one of us in the entire world – with His whole heart.  His heart thirsts for our love.  He calls us out of our sin into his loving, merciful arms – who can resist???  This is the best blessing that we have.

 

img_0039

 

There is something else I am incredibly thankful for this season.  A month and a half ago, my boyfriend B., took me on a hike.  It was a beautiful day, and the falls leaves were just starting to change color.  We started out at the park with a picnic lunch.  We then hiked through a beautiful woods, up the mountain to the top where we climbed up onto boulders to get a view of the valley and the deep blue lake below.  Then B. took me to a lookout where we were surrounded by the beauty of the woods, overlooking the lake.  While we took in the beauty of nature and the peacefulness of the moment, he asked me to MARRY HIM!!!!  I said “YES!!!!!!!”  AHHHHH!!!   WE ARE GETTING MARRIED!!!  We couldn’t be more excited!!!  My heart is so full of love for B.  He is a man of virtue and he is courageous, prayerful, strong, and handsome.  He is so much fun and always makes life an adventure.  He challenges me through his own example to be patient, kind and generous.  Please pray for us as we prepare for marriage that we continue to be sacrificial and selfless and that we may glorify God in all that we do.

Here we are the day of our engagement feeling like we were on top of the world

(cause we pretty much were on top of the world while on top of that mountain 😉 )

engagement-photo

 

My prayer for you, my dear reader, is that you may know how blessed you truly are and that you count your blessings this Thanksgiving season.

“Now the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace in believing;

that you may abound in hope, and in the power of the Holy Ghost.” – Romans 15:13

Happy Thanksgiving!

Worthy Of A Beautiful Marriage

27 Sep

It is 1:03 AM.  I can’t sleep.  So, I got up and put my laundry away, put my room in order, and decided to blog.

Life has been amazing.  Amazingly good, amazingly stressful, and amazingly blessed.  Everything to becoming an insurance agent over the summer, to answering phone calls about insurance questions and claims (EEEK!) to dating the man of my dreams and growing as a couple, to planning our future together.  This summer has been incredibly wonderful.  There are so many things I could write about at this wee hour of the morning.  I could write about my job, or I could write about the presidential debate, or I could write about my new hair-do.  But, I have something far more important I want to write about right now.  I want to write about marriage.

Although I am not yet married, I love talking about marriage.  I see it as an opportunity, a journey, a cross, a blessing and a GIFT.  I hope to always see marriage in this way.

Marriage is a journey whereby a man and a woman commit their lives to each other to grow in holiness and share in the joys and struggles together – to help each other carry their crosses and rejoice in their blessings – to help each other get to Heaven.

In my opinion, there are far too many people who see marriage as a day where the couple signs up for long-term misery.  In the past several years, I’ve had co-workers tell me not to get married because “life is much easier when you’re not married.”  That is so sad to hear because that gives marriage a bad rap.  I’m not denying the fact that marriage is hard.  That is a given.  Any noble cause such as marriage is hard.  It takes a lot of work and a lot of selflessness.  I just had it on my heart to write about marriage and remind you that it’s good, and imperfect, and even though it’s hard, it. is. beautiful.

Once a very wise man told me that marriage is not 50/50.  It is 100/100.  We give everything for the sake of the other person.  We withhold no generosity, kindness, charity or patience even when we are tired and feel like we have nothing left to give.  If life were more about giving of ourselves as much as we could, can you imagine what an amazing world this would be?  It would be simply amazing!

My boyfriend B. and I pray for each other every day.  Even though he lives out of town, we still find ways to have date nights on a regular basis.  We love each other through the good and the bad, the laughs and the misunderstandings.  We carry each other’s crosses and work stresses, and we share each others joys and blessings.  We pray together and ask God’s blessings on our lives and our future together (and we pray for our forthcoming engagement this year!  I’m so excited I can hardly wait!!!!)

I have been praying for my future marriage for years.  I have dreamed of my wedding day over and over again, and have dreamed of having my own children. I want it so badly that it sometimes makes me cry.  I pray that I may be a good and holy wife and mother, and an obedient daughter of God.  I pray for married couples and for couples who hope to be married someday.  Marriage is good, beautiful and holy.  It is hard and it is difficult.  It is all a GIFT from GOD.

I pray that you may find peace, love and joy in your marriage.  God is there with you through the good and the bad.  Because He loves you.

You are worthy of a beautiful marriage. 

image

Cherry blossoms in Washington, DC, photo taken spring 2016

A Valentine Love Story

15 Feb

Valentine’s Day has always been a fun day for me.  Getting pink and red valentine’s as a little girl was always so exciting.  Grade school through high school, my cousins, siblings, friends and I would make valentine’s for each other and send them in the mail.  It was thrilling to receive a big envelope in the mail stuffed with valentine’s decorated with cute pictures, hearts and the question, “Will YOU be my valentine?”

In college, valentine’s day was special, but a little awkward at times.  I wrote home when I could, and would write special notes to my friends on campus.  My mom knew that I didn’t have a boyfriend and that valentine’s day was a bit challenging for me.  As I saw classmates receive roses and go on lovely dates with their boyfriends, I sat and wondered when that would happen to me.  My dad wrote me notes telling me how much he loved me.  He said to keep smiling because it would make someone’s day 🙂

The awkwardness of valentine’s day in college rested on those random notes or single roses that I would find in my mailbox from a secret admirer.  One time I even got a personalized poem from a guy who apparently saw me around campus and possibly even in class, but I had no idea who it could have been, nor did I ever find out who the secret admirer was... (Awkward, but hey, I got cool poem :-) )

pink-heart

Those college days were special when I would receive a package from home, stuffed with letters and notes from my parents and siblings.  At the time, my youngest brother wrote me the most adorable notes and according to my mom, he would “claim” me for when I came home next (meaning, that he needed his special one-on-one sister play time.) These notes always made me cry, not because I was sad, but because I loved seeing how much my family loved me by this gesture of their love.  I knew they loved me, but the fact that they made me valentine’s and sent them to me while I was several states away, was one of my favorite things.  One valentine’s day in particular, I received a diamond necklace with matching earrings from my mom.  *gulp.*  Oh the love. (*sniffle!*)

Valentine’s day, for many, is simply just another day.  Flower shops and card-making company’s capitalize on this day.  I *could* just brush it off as just another day and write it off as just another cheesy day for spending money on your loved ones, but I can’t just brush it off.  The long-held tradition of making this a special day on which my family and I write little notes to each other or do something extra special for each other remains.

Valentine’s day still holds a special place in my heart.  Yes, I look back with fond memories on those college days and smile at my secret admirer(s) (whomever they were), and, yes, I continue to write love notes and do little acts of service for my loved ones.  Valentine’s day shouldn’t be limited to one day.  Every day should be valentine’s day.  We should show our love for each other every day.  How will you show your family, friends, neighbors and c0-workers your particular love for them this week?  Perhaps there is someone in particular who needs our patience and a little more care?  A little more kindness and a few more prayers?  Will you join me?

sacred-heart-of-jesus

Let love be genuine; hate what is evil, hold fast to what is good; love one another with brotherly affection; outdo one another in showing honor.  Never lack in zeal, be aglow with the Spirit, serve the Lord. Rejoice in your hope, be patient in tribulation, be constant in prayer.”

Problem Solving and Conflict Resolution: Real Time talk

2 Feb

Oh hey!  It’s Rachel! 🙂  The author behind this blog.  Today I am hosting a discussion on problem solving, which is ironic because I really despise don’t like conflict.

You should also know that I am TERRIBLE with confrontation.  I will avoid it like the plague and then fumble through garbled up words (otherwise known as word vomit) and then humiliate myself beyond repair.  So there’s that.

When I get really upset I tend to shut down and then avoid talking about the “problem.”  *Gulp.*  I need your help!!!

conflict resolution

(Bahahah!!!  I just thought this was funny.  Quite the angry face, eh?!)

SO.  Today, I need your advice.  Big time.  I need to know what to do with when conflict arises and how to approach difficult situations.  Here are a few questions to jump start your advise to me 🙂  (Really, this is not just to get advice, although it kind of is, but it’s also to stimulate conversation about problem solving.  When I realized how ironic it was that I was hosting this topic, I decided not to write on it, but to ask for your suggestions regarding what to do when you really just don’t know how to handle conflict and problem situations.)

Comment below!!

Let’s talk about problem-solving. Not just solving the problem of finding a husband, but how to approach the negative parts of a relationship. Conflict arises in every kind of relationship: romantic, familial, friendly, professional. The best defense is a good offense, so what are your tips for managing conflict? Are you non-confrontational, or do you have a fiery temper? How have you worked through problems in previous (or current) relationships? Have you learned to “fight fair”? Do you have advice for avoiding or working through conflict?

Here is the link for linking up with me today:

Thanks in advance for your advice!!!

~Rachel

A Drop in the Ocean

"We ourselves feel that what we are doing is just a drop in the ocean. But the ocean would be less because of that missing drop." ~ Blessed Mother Teresa

The Veil of Chastity

Wisdom and Hope For Single Girls!

Held By His Pierced Hands

The only life worth living is a life worth dying for.