i am a lot of things. respectful of differences. disturbed by inequality. informed on truth. and aware of reality. but there is one thing that i am not: silenced by popular opinion. so often we either cower to not offend or the opposite – speak out with disregard or disrespect. but i would argue that there’s mellower middle that still moves the needle. admittedly, i sit back and observe at times, because frankly i've found that quiet kindness changes more hearts than combat. but as of late (like today), i've opted to step out in faith, be bold + in kindness share a little piece of my heart (now babayyy). sorry, had to.
rewind: when i had a tug on my heart, oh probably 3 years ago, to create this new product that blended faith + fitness, you can imagine that it was pretty far outside my comfort zone. i mean, who am i? i love this quote from my friends at Good News Feed that challenged me to my very core:
“God uses the unlikely to do the unthinkable.”
whoa. like, mind blown. before you sit there and think just for one moment, “yeah, but…” [fill-in-the-blank] trust me, my qualifications for this are nil. sure, i went to sunday school, perfectly primped in my can-can + black patent-leather shoes, complete with pigtails. and yes, i read the Bible because it’s the bomb – but i heavily rely on my little tabbies that tell me where to find the books and i'm so not one of those who can rattle off scripture on-demand. and who am i to preach with my history of multiple eating disorders and former president-of-the-perfectionist club title, with a dandy divorce under her belt??
who am i?
well, let me tell you: i am a child of God.
in fact, who am i NOT to?
who better to?
what i've found in my sometimes-wobbly walk with God, is that He doesn’t call the prepared – but rather, He prepares the called. like this is the Guy that hung out with prostitutes + tax collectors (apparently, they weren’t well-liked back then either) and the poor and the misfits. let's be real: Jesus could’ve dined with dignitaries, but chose to slum it with the sinners. just to clarify, i'm not self-identifying as an aforementioned lady-of-the-night here or anything, but we all have our own laundry list of sins. and this world wants us to stay in that place, feeling shame for our past. but here’s what i know from personal experience: God isn’t concerned with my past – but He’s extremely interested in my future. in fact, i've found that He’s allowed immense amounts of pain in my life because with Him and through Him, He’s transformed those struggles into my strengths; turned pain into my purpose. see, that’s the amazing thing about the God that we serve. i don’t have to be perfect because i'm saved daily by His grace. i don’t have to have it all together because His mercies are new every day. but why-oh-why would this matter to me? or furthermore, my business?
in a church service this past spring, may 21st to be exact, God used the sermon to nudge me toward action. the message was this: so often we allow our pain to become our prison; it literally holds us captive from living the life that we’re created for. but this is where God comes in. if we allow Him to work in our heart, He can use our pain to serve as a platform to live out our purpose. but not for us to perch on-high for worldly praise – but for His glory. literally, in my journal that day at church i wrote: “launch faith journal in october.” so, i'm like 1 month late. (i blame boats for not sailing fast enough. or that i procrastinated. or both.)
two days after that message, i took action. i sketched, doodled + designed the vision that had come to me so clearly after years of not knowing what this might look like. my first step before any of that: i sought counsel. emailing my long-time friend, michelle myers, founder of she works His way + Cross Training Couture, i basically said, “it’s go time.” we literally met virtually (meaning vis-à-vis social media) back in 2010. i reached out after reading her book “the look that kills,” and since then we’ve become business buddies + prayer partners who have collaborated umpteen times to bring Truth to an industry inundated with lies that our worth is connected to our worldly bod. and here’s the kicker: to this day, we’ve still never met in-person. like i would go to the ends of the earth for this girl, and the only fist-bump we’ve exchanged is in emoji-form. how strange + yet awesome is that?
what would follow were months of calls, drafts, prayers, texts, and even a few tears as she gently guided me in creating and collaborating on what we’re revealing today: our fitspiration faith + fitness journal. for so many years, i compartmentalized my faith into this tidy little bucket over here – that’s where i would toss in my to-dos of going to church, reading the Bible, going to life group. yay me, checking off the goody-goody list! (except when i didn’t.) and then over in a completely opposite corner were my healthy obsessions, like my fitness, clean-eating, and my physical appearance – which in and of themselves aren’t bad – except that’s not what God wants. He wants oneness with us. do you ever think, “well, why would God care about my fitness? isn't it kinda vain?” without Him, yes – it can be. not always, but it was for me more often than i care to admit. or, “is God really concerned with what i munched for brunch?” yes, in fact He is…because you’re His. and anything that brings you closer (or takes you further away) from Him, matters deeply. and that includes our fitness, our food, and even (actually, especially) our goals. what challenged me to the very core, was the fact that i was spending hours planning workouts, fitting in a sweat sesh + prepping food, yet when it came to time with God, days would go by where i was “too busy” to spend purposeful time in prayer or block off time with the Bible.
this changed immensely once i started using my fitspiration journal because it was a daily prompt to track health + gratitude, which for me was always a reflection of God’s blessing on my life. then i noticed something: the right-hand side of the page was always a prayer and a little doodled-design of a verse. then i started seeing pic after pic on instagram by YOU (our faithful followers), also using this space for scriptures. fast-forward six months and ta-da: the tool that we designed to provide you with a specific space for daily grace, gratitude + #soulgoals. here’s what i love: it’s a real + raw way to dial in your healthy disciplines to tend to the very temple that God gave us, while first focusing on the Father.
our earthly bods are a gift from God, so being healthy isn’t just physical – it’s a spiritual discipline. what better way to honor our Creator than tending our temple with daily fitness, nourishing our bods with healthy fuel + setting goals that glorify Him?
a few important things to note about the fitspiration faith + fitness journal:
"it is more blessed to give than to receive." [acts 20:35]
$1 from the sale of each journal will be given to she works HIS way to further their mission of supporting business-minded, Jesus-loving women in their walk with Christ + serving others. download the swHw app for free daily devotions!
order now + get it in time for Jesus’ birthday party
you can order online now + use code SHIPITTOME through 12.01.17 and we’ll ship it to you for free. but note: they will NOT ship until 12.01. free shipping is my gift to you for my procrastinating because they’re still on a boat somewhere. (pray for waves.)
join us live
mark your calendars + join michelle and i this tuesday, november 21st @ 9am PST / 12pm EST on facebook live as we dive into a discussion about all things faith + fitness. RSVP or stream live here: “are you seeking perfection? or your Perfecter?”
share your heart with me.
i feel a wee-bit exposed + vulnerable over here, just baring my lil' spirit-filled soul. and my prayer is that it sheds even an ounce of hope or joy on your heart, no matter where you’re at in your walk. comment below + let me know how i can be praying for you, and rest-assured michelle + i will have a special prayer sesh just for YOU.
maybe you already have a rock-solid relationship with God. or maybe you run from it fiercely because frankly, life has hurt you so many times that it’s easier to flee than have faith. or perhaps you’ve never even been given a chance to experience God’s crazy love. let me tell you this: i personally have parked my hiney in each of the above camps. like wallowed in my woe-is-me, “where is He?” pity-party of one. only to be amazed time and time again how the God of this universe shows up in the most loving, sometimes hilarious, but always incredible way. like, usually when i least deserve it. because let’s face it – none of us do. but the one thing i know for sure, that when i don’t feel close to God – i’m the one who moved. and He’s always there waiting patiently with open arms. or in this case, a fresh new page of possibilities for you to write your story.