Decisive Decision Making

The older I get the more I realize just how important the decision making process is. Sometimes even the simplest of decisions can make or break a situation. That’s why it’s crucial to make the RIGHT decision the FIRST time. It’s a funny analogy but decision making is actually a lot like learning to wear make-up. You start out with a little bit of lip gloss, then you move on to master eye-shadow and then the works but if you don’t practice and apply it properly you just end up looking silly! I remember when I was younger I had the most difficult time making decisions – and it didn’t matter how big or small. I hated worrying about if I was making the right decision or not, so many times it was simply easier for me not to make a decision. The thing I didn’t realize though is that even when I didn’t make a decision I was still deciding.

Indecision is a decision. When you live indecisively you can miss out on some great times and opportunities. For me, the fear of failure ended up paralyzing me to where I would DECIDE not to make any decisions for my life. Ironic, right? Know why decisions seemed so scary to me and like such a big deal? Because I wasn’t fully TRUSTING God like I need to. When you trust God to guide your decisions you take the YOU out of the equation. Much of the time God is just waiting for us to open the door for Him to work miracles in our life. Unfortunately though, oftentimes when we’re so afraid of making the wrong decision that we over-analyze everything and rely on our own smarts instead. In turn, we end up making bad decisions when all we had to do was trust God with it all in the beginning!

Pray. Whenever a tough decision presents itself praying should ALWAYS be the first step you take. God created you, He knows your past, He knows your future, He loves you and only wants the best for you! Pray for Him to give you wisdom and (here’s a BIG key) TRUST that He will show you the right path to take!

Take a Breath. Before you make an important decision try clearing your mind instead of thinking through it and rationalizing a solution yourself. While you’re taking a breath, read your Bible or listen to some Christian music so you can gain some perspective and encouragement.

Follow your peace. As a Christian, peace is one of the greatest tools that God gives us. It helps to direct us along the journey of life. Remember to NEVER step out farther than your peace can carry you — meaning if you don’t have peace, DON’T do it! God’s path for your life will never call for you to live out of peace, stressed out and confused. Just trust Him and rest in His peace.

Flex them muscles! As I mentioned earlier, good decision making takes practice. Every new good habit starts with baby steps so start small. Start employing God’s wisdom in even the day’s simplest decisions like where to eat lunch or where to park. I guarantee you will be amazed by the little miracles that start popping up and how eventually decision making won’t seem so scary. Once you’ve learned how to incorporate and lean on God in the smallest of decisions, you’ll find yourself doing the exact same thing with big decisions! And that’s exactly how God has called us to live!

Trust in the LORD with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways submit to him, and he will make your paths straight.

Life Outside The Box

From the beginning of our lives, society has taught us that we need two things if we want to be happy – an education and a good job.  It tells us, “Make sure that you work hard in school or you’ll go nowhere.  Get good grades because you need to get into a top University.  Be sure to pick a career that will make you lots of money so you can have a nice life.”  Don’t get me wrong, I’m not saying that you shouldn’t go to school, study, or work hard and I’m by no means saying that hard work and dedication is a bad thing.  The point that I am making is that this is the mindset for worldly success.  The world tries to lay out one path for you to take.  It teaches you how to rely on your own strength and wisdom.  It teaches you to think inside the box.  There was a time in my life when I believed all of these things too.  I mean, that’s how everybody else does it, right?  WRONG.  While the world may operate this way, as Christians, were called to operate a different way – Gods way!

Sure, we can live like the rest of the world and create a nice life for ourselves in our own strength.  Or we can live for God and let Him shape our lives into something even greater!  Maybe the amazing future that God has for you includes college; then again maybe it doesn’t.  Either way, don’t get sucked into thinking there is only one road for you to take.  Don’t listen to the lies telling you “you’re really behind everyone else.  You already missed your chance for something amazing, so why even bother?”  Don’t continue to beat yourself up over missed opportunities.  The thing we all need to remember is that we don’t make our own opportunities.  We don’t create our own talents.  We don’t create our own knowledge or even gain it from textbooks.  ALL of these opportunities, gifts, talents, and blessings for a good life come from one source and one source only: GOD! 

Don’t put your faith in things so temporary; put your faith in God.  By doing so, you won’t have to worry about creating the perfect life for yourself.  Just listen to God, be faithful, and everything will work out!  God knows everything that you need and He is there for you always!

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Go on, I dare you, live life outside the worlds box.  Live with God and watch amazing things bloom in yourself and your life!  Shine on! 🙂

*Photo courtesy of “God Is in the Small Stuff” by Bruce & Stan (Barbour Publishing) www.bruceandstan.com

 

Make Every Day A Special Occasion

The other day I had a personal breakthrough.  I walked into my closet to get dressed, saw a new outfit that I wanted to wear, and I put it on to start my day.  For most people this may not be a great accomplishment but for me it was.  You see, ever since I was a little girl I would save outfits, shoes, jewelry, and other things for “special occasions”.  I remember when I was like 4, I wanted this pair of flats that looked just like Dorothy’s from the Wizard of Oz.  I love them so much that I begged my mom to buy them for me.  When she did get them for me, I rarely wore them because I was saving them for special occasions.  This thought process followed me all through my life that is until recently.

As I stood in my closet the other day I thought to myself: “Why am I waiting for some other day to be special?  Why can’t today be special too?”  Everyday is a gift and we should all treat it as such.  Today may not feel as exciting as the thought of going to a concert on Friday, but make it special!  Go out of your way to celebrate today.  Celebrate who you are, who God created you to be.

“This is the day that the Lord has made. I will rejoice and be glad in it.” – Psalms 118:24

While this mindset may seem innocent when it comes to what you wear, imagine what would happen if we let it sink into other areas of our lives.  What if instead of being a giving person, we think “well it’s Christmastime so I’ll give to a charity now.”  This is a fantastic thing to do, but don’t let your love for others stop after you put away the tree and lights.  What if we thought “I don’t feel like smiling today, maybe tomorrow will be better.”  That smile that you held in because you were waiting for a better time may have made someone else’s day. 

One thing that I have learned is that we need to make even the most mundane day feel like a blessing, because it is.  None of us are promised a tomorrow so why not live today to the fullest?  Take a chance.  Tell your loved ones how much they mean to you.  Spend your time wisely and do something incredible with your life! You can do it, after all:

 “I can do all things through him who gives me strength.” – Philippians 4:13

I challenge you to make the most of every day.  Do what you can to change boring into phenomenal!  Make someone’s day a little brighter.  You have what it takes to change this world for the better to get out there and shine the light! 🙂

EXTRAORDINARY

Unpredictable

What does the future hold?   No one really knows, but we sure like to pretend that we do sometimes.  In our heads we think we have life all figured out.  Nothing can surprise us because we know where we’ve been and we know where were going.  We’ve made plans – good plans at that!

I remember back when I was in high school, I thought that my life would go like this:  graduate high school, go to college, graduate college, get a job, and get married.  I had everything figured out.  I had a plan and I just needed to complete it one step at a time.  But then when things didn’t seem to go according to my plan, it was the end of the world!…well my world at least.  To my surprise, I had overlooked one major factor……GOD.  I was so self-focused that I left Him out of the equation.  I thought I could accomplish all of my goals in my own strength, at my own time.  Sometimes I felt so confused about what steps to take and I would get so frustrated when I took them in my own strength yet there didn’t seem to be any open doors.

The thing that I had horribly overlooked is the fact that God is unpredictable!  The reason He is unpredictable is because He can do anything and everything!  When there is no way He will make a way.  When there isn’t an open door, God will open a window, if its part of His will for your life.  We should all be thinking: “Whew, what a relief!  I mean the same God who made the universe and put the stars in their place is in control of my life?  AND He wants all things to work out for my good?  He wants to bless ME?” ….Mindboggling, I know, but its 100% the truth!  Refuse to think that you have life all figured out and that you don’t need God, because the reality is that you do.  The only thing predictable in life is that God and life are unpredictable.  You don’t know what life will throw your way.  At the same time, you don’t know what amazing things God has in your future!

I love the Francesca Battistelli song called “Unpredictable” that speaks to this very issue we all have: putting God in a box.

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Sometimes, because our strength, courage, endurance, wisdom, and talents are limited we think that God’s are too.  Because of this we put Him in a box, thinking “There is no way that dream will happen.”   We think in the real realm when we should think in the Spiritual realm.  God can make anything happen; all He requires from us is faith the size of a mustard seed!

“He replied, “Because you have so little faith. Truly I tell you, if you have faith as small as a mustard seed, you can say to this mountain, ‘Move from here to there,’ and it will move. Nothing will be impossible for you.”   – Matthew 17:19-21

It can also be a challenge to think that someone else knows us what’s better for us and knows us better than we do ourselves, but that’s God.  He created us and loves us more than we could ever imagine, so why would He want to limit us?  Why would He want us to be unhappy?  Seems to me like we have no reason not to trust God with everything we have!  Every idea, every dream, every problem, we should lay them all down at His feet and trust that He will make everything for our good in ways only He can!

Step out in faith that God has amazing things for you.  When you start to feel anxious because you don’t know what the future holds, refuse to get stressed out about it.  Instead of stressing out, just say a simple prayer like: “God, I trust You with my future.  I refuse to worry about it; I’m laying it in Your hands.  While I don’t know what’s ahead, I know that You do and You will give me everything I need to succeed.”  By saying a simple prayer like that, it takes the weight off your shoulders and allows God to work through you.  Be determined to develop an unshakable faith so you can live in peace even at life’s most unpredictable moments!  That way when you start taking steps God can direct you, rather than relying on you or someone else to be that direction.  Whether or not your dreams seem possible at the current time in your life, remember, nothing is impossible with God!

On The Rise – Meet Brittney Borowski!

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Meet Brittney Borowski!

Brittney is a talented photographer and devoted Christian.  She spends her time taking beautiful pictures of nature, weddings, friends, and family!…

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We recently caught up with Brittney to get to know her better!  Check out our question and answer session:

Q: How did you get interested in photography?

A: When I was 7 years old, my family and I took a trip to the San Diego Zoo! And as we talked past the bear exhibit, I took my first picture with my dad’s film camera. I actually still have that picture.

 

Q: What are your favorite things to take pictures of?

A: I love taking pictures of God’s creations. And that can be really anything. I like to find the beauty. So whether it be people, down to the oceans or up to the mountains. Everything has beauty.

 

Q: What are your hopes for the near future?

A: I hope to continue to further my photography business that glorifies God! Taking pictures for churches, and hopefully maybe becoming some kind of church advertiser or something J

 

Q: Do you find it difficult being a Christian in the world today?

A: Oh my goodness, yes! It can be very difficult. I feel as though my faith is under attack all the time. But I have learned the more you go out and be a disciple, it can get a little easier because that is when you see God really move! It is the most encouraging way to stay strong in the world that is trying to tear us down. Remember this: The world is not our home, we are just merely walking through it. Our destination is HEAVEN.

 

Q:  What great moments have you experienced along your journey so far? Any challenges?

A:  There are challenges every day. Whether it be in just school, family or spiritual battles. These challenges can always be overcome. I don’t believe in the saying that people say now a days that goes something like this: God won’t give you anything more than you can handle. Even though some people back this up with 1 Corinthians, we have completely twisted that beautiful piece of scripture. The truth is that God might give us something that we can’t handle so that we look to Him! I think that is even more beautiful. We are not meant to go through these trials alone.

 

Q:  Do you ever travel to different places to take photos?  If so, what has been your favorite location to photograph so far?

A:  I kind of go all over! I love to travel. I have family and friends all over the world. I just recently went to Fort Bragg California and fell completely in love! God is BEAUTIFUL.

 

Q:  What Bible verses inspire you the most?  Do you have a favorite?

A:  My favorite one is 1 Peter 4: 1-4 (Since therefore Christ suffered in the flesh, arm yourselves with the same way of thinking, for whoever has suffered in the flesh has ceased from sin, so as to live for the rest of the time in the flesh no longer for human passions but for the will of God. For the time that is past suffices for doing what the Gentiles want to do, living in sensuality, passions, drunkenness, orgies, drinking parties, and lawless idolatry. With respect to this they are surprised when you do not join them in the same flood of debauchery, and they malign you). This verse helped me stand out in a good way and get through the temptations of high school.

 

Q:  Do you have any advice for aspiring photographers?

A:  Use your gift to inspire others. To boast through Jesus and for Jesus. Experiment always with different styles J

 

Q:  What do you like to do to in your free time?

A:  I love reading, drawing, photographing, singing (worship) and blogging! I am sure there are many other things, but that is what I find myself doing most frequently.

 

Q:  When did you decide you wanted to be a photographer?

A:  Right after that first sound of the shutter when I used my dad’s camera! J

 

Q:  If you could describe yourself in 5 words, what would they be?

A:  Sinner, BOLD, Compassionate, artistic, consciousness

 

Q:  What steps did you take / are you taking to learn more about photography?

A:  Looking at photographers who inspire me. Testing out new things. Looking up YouTube videos!

 

Q:  After people fall in love with your pictures (which they obviously will!), how can they get their own copy of them?

A:  Right here! All kinds of other goodies for sale 🙂 society6.com/BrittneyBorowski (http://society6.com/BrittneyBorowski)

 

Q:  What would you say to encourage others who are trying to follow their dreams?

A:  Pray. Pray. Pray. That YOUR dreams align with HIS dreams. If you need encouragement, reach out to people. I am always available for help J just message me!
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I fell in love with Brittney’s pictures from the moment that I first saw them on Instagram and I am sure you will too!  Not only is she able to capture beautiful moments in time, she is able to spread God’s love in a captivating way.  She is such an encourager and I love her passion for God!  It’s incredibly refreshing to see a young woman with a drive to live for God and to be a light in the dark world we live in!  Keep on shining Brittney! 🙂

To learn more about Brittney, check out her other pictures, or order some of her amazing merchandise be sure to visit:

Website – http://www.brittneyborowski.com/#0

Facebook – https://www.facebook.com/BrittneyBorowskiPhotography

Pinterest – http://www.pinterest.com/brittzyboo/my-photography/

Society 6 – http://society6.com/BrittneyBorowski

Instagram – http://instagram.com/brittzy#

Tumblr – http://hecallsmelovely.tumblr.com/post/61735658015/by-brittney-borowski

Happy Thanksgiving!

Happy Thanksgiving! 🙂

I love this holiday!  Not just because of the turkey, shopping, and football though.  Don’t get me wrong, these things are great, but there is so much more to be grateful for!  I’m most thankful for my family, puppies, friends, and of course the fact that God is amazing!  God is so good to us every moment of every day and I am SO thankful for His unconditional love.  I mean think about it, you could do the worst thing in the world or be a completely horrible person and He is still going to be there for you.  He loves us no matter how flawed we can be.  That’s what unconditional means – there is nothing that we could ever do could separate us from His love and I am so grateful for this.

“Nothing Can Separate Us from God’s Love – What shall we say about such wonderful things as these? If God is for us, who can ever be against us? Since he did not spare even his own Son but gave him up for us all, won’t he also give us everything else? Who dares accuse us whom God has chosen for his own? No one—for God himself has given us right standing with himself. Who then will condemn us? No one—for Christ Jesus died for us and was raised to life for us, and he is sitting in the place of honor at God’s right hand, pleading for us.

Can anything ever separate us from Christ’s love? Does it mean he no longer loves us if we have trouble or calamity, or are persecuted, or hungry, or destitute, or in danger, or threatened with death? No, despite all these things, overwhelming victory is ours through Christ, who loved us.

And I am convinced that nothing can ever separate us from God’s love. Neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither our fears for today nor our worries about tomorrow—not even the powers of hell can separate us from God’s love. No power in the sky above or in the earth below—indeed, nothing in all creation will ever be able to separate us from the love of God that is revealed in Christ Jesus our Lord.”  -Romans 8:31-39

God loves us so much and that is truly something to be thankful for! I hope that you all are having a great day full of family, friends, good food, laughter, and blessings!