community brew

Generosity

generosity It's time for another Community Brew post today, hosted by Madison of The Wetherills Say I Do and Rachel of Oh Simple Thoughts! This month's topic is all about generosity. Just like last month, I know that I'm a day late posting this due to my crazy finals schedule these past few days, but I'm super excited for this month's topic, which I think is especially fitting for this time of year.

Christmas time is a very busy time. All the preparing and running around can make you feel more stressed than relaxed. Still, every year, I see something different in the way people act this time of year. They're more generous. Now I'm not saying that people are selfish during the other three seasons, but I see all this gift giving making a positive impact on people's lives.

I've been impacted by someone's generosity very recently, and it got me thinking about a few things, which I'll get to in a moment. First I'd like to share the story (because we all like stories, right?) :)

Yesterday morning was my last final for the semester (yay!). Turns out, I didn't completely study all the right material and my confidence on the test was shattered as I looked at the first page of the test. Needless to say, the test didn't go over as well as I had hoped. A little depressed, I went to the campus bookstore to return my rented books (a.k.a. get rid of the book for that class) and pick up a package that had arrived earlier in the week. When I went back to my room to open it, I discovered that it was from my "secret elf" Charlene of the Great Christmas Exchange! Excitedly I opened the box and smiled from ear to ear when I discovered what she had chosen for me: a beautiful mug from Crystal Faye with my blog name on it, a Kate Spade notepad, a box of green tea, and a sweet Christmas card. I'll be showing photos of these amazing gifts later in the month, don't worry.

Back to the story. I nearly cried of happiness because of the thoughtfulness she had put into the gifts. She discovered what I liked and tailored it to fit me. Her generosity truly made my day!

Someone else gave an amazing gift of generosity over 2000 years ago. God gave us his only son to die for us, the ugly sinners. We weren't deserving of that, but did that matter to God? No. He did it out of his love for us. That's what generosity is. It's selfless giving, modeled after the great gift we were given from God.

So I encourage you to show generosity this season and then continue to do so all year round. If you need some ideas, I've listed a few here:

10 Ways to Be Generous

  1. Buy someone a meal: at the cafe, restaurant, or the person behind you in the drive through.
  2. Volunteer your time
  3. Leave a platter of treats in the lobby of your office, dorm, or apartment building. Extra credit if you include a handwritten note and a list of ingredients (for folks who are plagued with allergies)
  4. Buy an Amazon gift for a random stranger (you can search for wishlists here)
  5. Leave a generous tip for the waiter
  6. Compliment strangers
  7. Tape quarters to parking meters
  8. Sponsor a child in a third world country
  9. Donate your stuff
  10. Offer to help carry groceries for the elderly or moms with young children
What are your thoughts on generosity?
blog-signature

Seasons in Life

Seasons in Life | The Kardia Blog

I am so excited to bring you another Community Brew post today, hosted by Madison of The Wetherills Say I Do and Rachel of Oh Simple Thoughts! This month's topic is all about Seasons. I know that I'm a day late posting this due to my crazy busy schedule these past two days. Nevertheless, I always look forward to these posts because I get to share from my heart.

Esther 4:14 || Isaiah 40:31 What has God taught you about seasons in life? How have you learned to move from one season to another? What is your current season in life and how are you learning to grow in that season?

When I think of seasons, I think changes in life; changes that may sometimes push you out of your comfort zone or changes that you eagerly accept.

I absolutely love what Madison had to say on chasing seasons. As a person who loves dreaming about the future and what's in store, I find that I have to learn to slow down and cherish the season I'm currently in. I have so many dreams I want to fulfill, such as graduating college with a double major in only four years, getting married, decorating a house, starting a business, growing my blog, the list goes on and on. As much as I want to be in control of the path of my life, that is completely out of my hands and in God's only. What I've learned over the past few months is that God has His own timing, and things don't always go the way you thought they would. You may stay in one season longer than another, or you may change between multiple ones in a short amount of time. But if you're constantly wanting to get to the next season, you'll never fully enjoy what's happening in the moment or learn what God is trying to teach you.

Right now, I really want to move on to the next season in my life, but I can hear God saying "Not yet", because I have some things to learn. Things like patience, priorities, and not being wasteful. So if I had to choose one word to describe the season I'm in currently, it'd be growth. I'm learning to be a leader, learning to work with people, learning to apply things in life. I'm growing in my spiritual life day by day and growing in knowledge as I go to classes and study every night. Yet the one thing this season has really taught me is patience. It's not all about me and what I want. Just because something doesn't go the way I wanted it to doesn't mean it's ruined. That's being selfish. God's using this season of growth and learning to mold me.

So take time to reflect on what season you're in. Don't try to rush God's timing. Seasons in life will come and go, but your memories of those seasons will stay with you forever.

 What do seasons mean to you? What season are you in? 

blog-signature

P.S. Why gratitude matters.

Gratitude

Gratitude | The Kardia Blog Today is my first post as part of a linkup called Community Brew. Two of my favorite bloggers, Rachel of Oh Simple Thoughts, and Madison of The Wetherills Say I Do, began this linkup to give bloggers the opportunity to open up, be honest, vulnerable, and build community with others. Sometimes the prompts are on marriage, sometimes they are about life in general, but today's topic is on gratitude. I'm really excited to talk about this topic because its something that has been on my heart lately.

Earlier this month I shared my September Goals, and one of the things on my list is to begin a gratitude journal. Honestly, I've be slacking on that. Life has been a whirlwind these past few weeks. I feel like I've been barely able to keep up with everything. Between work, classes, friends, homework, hobbies, meetings, and projects, I don't have much time to relax.

And I don't like it.

I'm constantly doing one thing or another. Sometimes I want to scream and cry because it's just too much and I wonder why I'm spending so much time on things like homework and meetings. I get frustrated with my teachers because I have too much due on the same day. I wish I didn't have to go to work or class at 8:30 in the morning and just sleep in instead. Then I stumbled across this saying:

Gratitude | The Kardia Blog
It's so true. I took a moment to be by myself and sat outside earlier today. I spent the time in conversation with God, not complaining about how busy I am (although I did ask for peace, guidance, and the strength to complete things efficiently), but being thankful for all that He's done for me. I felt so much more alert and prepared the rest of the day. My outlook on things had changed; I was more positive.

How little time we spend being grateful for what we're blessed with.  We let life bog us down and take our focus away from what truly matters. My personal verse to remind me to take time to be thankful is Colossians 3:15-17.

15 And let the peace of God rule in your hearts, to which also you were called in one body; and be thankful. 16 Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly in all wisdom, teaching and admonishing one another in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing with grace in your hearts to the Lord. 17 And whatever you do in word or deed, do all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through Him.

I'm excited to share that I will be using my gratitude journal beginning today! I want to be more intentional on taking time to be grateful.

10 Things I'm Grateful For:

  1. The crisp air of early fall mornings.
  2. The chance to get a good education.
  3. Conversation dates with my girl friends.
  4. A warm bed to fall into every night.
  5. The sunlight that streams through the trees.
  6. A loving family.
  7. Laughter that brings me to tears.
  8. New friends
  9. Kind strangers
  10. A God who loves me

community brew link up
What are some things you are thankful for? How do you show gratitude even when you feel burnt out?

blog-signature