Thursday, February 2, 2017

My Most Influential Self



Did you know that I recently attended the Influence Conference in Nashville? It was my first time attending after wanting to for YEARS, and it was the last conference. The timing was certainly perfect for me, and I feel like I saw and heard exactly what I was supposed to see and hear.

On the morning of January 14, I walked into a gorgeous church in Nashville. I was eager to meet more faces that I'd only known online. (I got to meet several at an Influence Network member's only event the previous night!) I was expectant and hopeful to hear something that rang true from each of the incredible teachers. Obviously, I heard more than I could even jot down in my notebook. 

Jess Connolly was the first speaker, and her words rocked my world. It has been weeks, and I am still thinking of them daily. (Partially because I knew I needed to write this post and wasn't making the time to do it. Tonight seems like the right time.)

Jess described a retreat she had attended where they described their broken selves and their ideal selves. 

My broken self is the junk-food loving, reality tv binging, spending money because I like stuff, responsibility procrastinating self. 

My ideal self is the 30-year old who has a great skincare routine, accepts my body for how it is, loves my job, is able to balance my checkbook to the penny, is a spectacular wife/daughter/sister/friend, is the perfect balance of introvert/extrovert, is always appropriately energized, and is, like, SO CUTE. 

BUT, as Jess pointed out, "My ideal self is not my most influential self. Who is your ideal self? Picture her. There is freedom in stopping trying to be her! Influence has nothing to do with worldly assignment but has everything to do with being an eternal ambassador."

It was really as Jess was telling us these things aloud that I realized I compare myself most to my ideal self. Sure, my ideal self is made up of the best components that other people share on Instagram, but I'm stuck in the hamster wheel of trying to only be that girl.

So, on IF: Gathering Eve, it only seemed appropriate to go back over the notes I took during her talk and write this post. (I do wish I could just let you hear her entire talk for yourself. It was BEYOND.)

Here's what I'm shattering about my ideal self:

I don't fit into the clothes I fit into when I was 22, but I'm tired of blaming my anxiety meds or my metabolism for the body I have now. I either want to learn to exercise to get a banging body and/or I want to accept the one God gave me. I feel certain there's a healthy balance.

I sometimes go right to bed without taking my makeup off. This doesn't mean I'm failing as an adult.

If I wait until my home is clean and just how I always hoped it would look (#Pinterest), I will certainly miss out on loving others well in a comfortable space.

I can't wait until I grow up and turn into my dreamy, ideal self. That's not who I'm made to be. This life really isn't about me after all. Jess said, "We were put on earth to bring people into the marvelous light - not for any other reason."

All of that to say, we are created to be FREE in the Lord. The gospel is true, and it's for all of us. Go in to the weekend with this in your mind.

Love you,
Jessica
@jesstinybird


Sunday, January 1, 2017

Farewell to you, 2016.

In 2014, my word of the year was hope. My word for 2015 was purpose. 2016 was marked by the word unafraid. 

My word for 2017 came to me earlier than normal, but I was glad. My word for 2017 is home. There are a few reasons behind this. 


  • I want to remember that this world is not my home.
  • I want to do some work around the house to make it a calmer, more peaceful haven.
  • I want to spend time learning how to rest intentionally, and this means saying no to some of the good things that have previously filled up my calendar in order to learn how to be still with the Lord.
Here we are friends - in a brand new year we've all been waiting on. Just remember that our hope isn't in the date on a calendar.

Happy New Year to you! Hope it's the best yet!

Love,
Jessica
@jesstinybird

Sunday, October 23, 2016

Soft Surroundings

I've had this little space on the internet for just over four years. As with most things in Mississippi, the blogosphere is slower. For the first time ever, I got invited to attend an event as a blogger. Needless to say, my heart was filled to the brim!

Friday, I went to Renaissance to the opening of Soft Surroundings. Until I was invited to the opening, I hadn't heard of the store. However, the crowd inside let me know that I was one of the only ones who wasn't already familiar!



The store offers clothing, accessories, beauty, skincare, gift books, home decor, and so much more!



There were fresh flowers all around, and I loved that touch! It made it less like a store and more like the home of a friend.














my time. my place. my self.

Love,
Jessica
@jesstinybird

**Many thanks to Soft Surroundings for the invite to the store opening and the gift bag from the event. All opinions are my own!**

Friday, September 30, 2016

Blog-tember Day 30 // Humans of New York

Friday, Sept. 30: Picture this, you've been stopped on the street by the photographer of Humans of New York, and he asks, "What advice would you give to a large group of people?" Share a picture of yourself along with the advice.





Love yourself and love others. Accept grace and share grace with others. Everyone is going through life doing the best they can. If they aren't doing good things, maybe they are still doing what they think they need to do to get by. Let's be gentle with each other. Let's listen and empathize and love each other.

Love,
Jessica
@jesstinybird

P.S. Thanks for reading this month! Still sad I missed a couple of days/prompts. Definitely trying not to fret over missed posts...or spilled milk. ;)

Thursday, September 29, 2016

Blog-tember Day 29 // My Fab Five...er...Three!

Thursday, Sept. 29: Your Fab Five. Share your favorite bloggers/besties and tell us what you love about them! Share a link and give a shout out.

Happy Thursday, friends! I'm sharing three women who totally inspire me! Many of my in-person friends don't blog and/or are super private on social media, so I'm sharing three who do!



My IRL friend Jess blogs at To My Own Beat about Jesus, her family, adoption, and lots of grace. You won't be sorry that you've found her blog, I can promise. Pour yourself a mug of cocoa and read her witty and honest posts.


My spectacular friend Hannah uses Instagram as a mini-blog to share about her family! She is SO busy with work and family and life and yet still manages to love her people well. 


My friend Kasia blogs at Kasia's Kitchen! She's getting married VERY soon! She loves fall and Harry Potter and Starbucks and pretty nails. She's amazing.


Love,
Jessica
@jesstinybird


Blog-tember Day 28 // Top 5 pictures of my year so far!

Wednesday, Sept. 28: The top five pictures that illustrate your year so far.

So far, 2016 has been busy, beautiful, and FULL!


Also, it's actually day 29, but I forgot to post yesterday!!!



Several of my favorite ladies at IF:Pinelake in February!

I celebrated turning 30 in May! 

Jordan and I went to New Orleans in June and got to go to WWE Raw! SUCH a fun night!

In July, we went to Amarillo to surprise my dad for his birthday! It was wonderful!

I made this new bestie in August/September! So thankful for the amazing friends my job has afforded me!

Love,
Jessica
@jesstinybird

Tuesday, September 27, 2016

Blog-tember Day 27 // ALL THE FEELS

Tuesday, Sept. 27: Something that made you laugh or cry recently. It could be a video, a picture, a post, a memory. Anything that moved you.

First, I'm still sad about the two days I didn't follow the prompt and the one day I missed posting altogether. Geez. #LetItGo

Today, I can share along the lines of the prompt because I always have lots to laugh and/or cry about. Hahahaha!  :)

Wanna know what moved me? Last week and tonight?

This Is Us.


Y'all. This is the most brilliant show I have seen in quite some time. It has made me laugh, and it certainly could make me sob, but by some miracle, I haven't yet.

Anyone else watching?

Love,
Jessica
@jesstinybird