DreamWard Bound With Where I am

success

I took some time today to figure out where I am with my goals, what I am doing, and what I can change. I know that I don’t want to push myself too much. I don’t want to burn out like I did before Christmas. I do want to keep on keeping on with them. I do want to work towards my goals, challenging myself as I do.

I realized that for now I need to have a more relaxed format and although I will be trying to do more and more as time goes on I am only going to do a little with each category of my life that I want to focus on.

With God and the Bible I have been listening to an audio Bible instead of reading it. I allow myself to relax and have even fallen asleep listening to it. I know this is not ideal, but at least I am listening and going through the Bible. Now when I try to read it I will at least have some knowledge of all the books. I am also starting to listening to two podcasts on my way to work. At least I am trying to start listening to the podcasts, but technology is fighting against me.

Next, I did have a goal about my family. I want to talk to them more. I realized though, I want stronger relationships with everyone in my life. That is why I am going to still try to contact my family members at least once a week, something that I still have not mastered, but I am also going to be intentional with the people around me. I going to try to encourage my BJJ classmates more, help my friends, and talk to people more. I am going to try to be intentionally more friendly and more open.

As far as my novel goes I am going to be focusing the most sit down alone time to that. I want to keep my deadline and to do that I have to edit 1.5 chapters a week. I am planning to spend most of this weekend with my characters and story. Hopefully I will be able to polish it up nicely and only have to go over it one or two more times. I want to be finishing up with it this time next year.

My health is next on the important scale. Since I have started Brazilian Jit Jitsu I have found a want and almost need to be healthier. I want to push myself harder to be healthy in my eating and activities. I am not going to jump right over to the super healthy side of things. If I do that I will wind up giving into the not healthy eating patterns that I fall into so often. Instead I will start gradual and listen to my body. I will be eating more salads and vegetables. I am also doing a 100 day exercise  challenge, which I mentioned in another post.  I did revise the challenge, since I did not have enough space to safely do any sort of rolls. As it is I have to reset my shrimps and hip switches at least 3 times. I am doing the challenge though. I am at day 15, so far. My fitness and health will be steps towards being in the best shape that I can be. It will be a long journey, but I am on it.

Now, there is my acting. It is on the back burner and I am not really focused on it as a career or really an actionable goal at the moment. However, that does not mean I am doing nothing with it. I am still going to my improv group almost weekly. I have had to take a few weeks off in this new year. It seemed like I was either sick or burnt out by Thursday. I am getting back in the rhythm of life it seems, though. I am even leading a group this coming week. Since, this is my only outlet for acting I will be intentional with it. I am going to focus on growing my skills, learning more about improv and hopefully leading when needed.

Finally, there is this blog thing that I am trying to do, also. I love writing and seeing people visiting what I wrote. I enjoy the feedback, even if it is mostly just likes. I am learning what people like to read and what is the most interesting to them. I am also learning what pulls them in and how what I say affects the stats of the site. This blog is a learning experience for me just as much as it is about the writing and making me focused on my writing.  Although I am learning and enjoying having this outlet, like I said last week I believe, I need to not have this be my main focus. I will be trying to do at least two posts every week, one being the DreamWard Bound posts and the other being my weekly writing prompt posts, that have been a lot less than weekly.

Those are all the thoughts I have now. I know this post is longer than my recent posts. I am sure I will go back to basically having no updates next week. It is the whole thinking about my DreamWard journey, that makes this one long.

I do hope you enjoyed this and like always, please, let me know what you think.

Precious

Hello, today I decided to do the daily prompt.  This is a mostly unedited poem. Please let me know what you think.

Precious

Who is precious?

Who can do no wrong?

There is only one.

With love flowing out

he came to the ground

with all the power

of the earth he owned,

He humbled himself to save every soul;

he came to rescue everyone.does no wrong

Yes my precious lives far above,

yes the one who can do no wrong

wrote the rules of the universe in our hearts.

He is love and truth.

He rescues those who, 

by the free will he gave,

chose to walk away.

He is in my precious.

http://dailypost.wordpress.com/2013/12/12/daily-prompt-my-precious/

God's promise

A note before the poem:

I’ve been reading Psalms and Proverbs lately. This is a poem that came out of that study. I hope you enjoy it and please tell me what you think.

God’s promise

Walk hand in hand with me,

I’ll show you everything I see.

Place your hope in the hand of mine

and I’ll carry it even higher.

Love me now

and I’ll show you my forever.

Love you forever

and I’ll show you my Heaven.

Only

walk hand in hand with me

and I’ll lead you where you should go;

showing you all you can be

helping you to truly grow.

So walk hand in hand with me

I’ll show you everything there is to see

walk hand in hand with me

and I’ll teach you which way to go,

how to grow.

I will teach you you’re always in my hand

I’ll never let you go.

Isaiah 55:8 painting

 

I am very happy about finishing this painting this week. I have been working on it and kept making mistakes, but in art mistakes are simply was of improving a piece of work. Mistakes in art work, brings out depth and character.

I am also happy about completing this piece because I love the verse. It is Isaiah 55:8 and states, “‘My thoughts are not your thoughts neither are your ways my ways’ declares the Lord.” If you know the verse you may also know the verse that follows, which says, “just as the heavens are above the earth my thoughts and ways are above yours.” That is why the verse  written in the skies above the earth.

Isaiah 55_8 001  Isaiah 55_8 010Isaiah 55_8 008

Please note: this painting is being sold in an auction on eBay.

Title: Isaiah 55:8

Size: 10 inch by 8 inch

Medium: acrylic painting on canvas

Reason: Isaiah 55:8 was the first verse I memorized and is a piece of scripture that I hold dear to my heart. It reminds you that God knows more about everything than I do and although his ways and thoughts are different from ours, he knows what is good.

My Artist Statement: I, Tiffany Joy, work with acrylic paint, polymer clay and the written  word to spread basic truth and highlight God’s love in hopes that I can someones day and spread the loving gospel of God.

My Tesitmony

I have not shared my testimony/ story in a while so I figured I would share it with everyone.

I grew up in a small town with a rather large family, which included 3 sisters and 4 step-siblings. I would only see my father on the weekends and my relationship with him was not ideal.

After graduating high school I went to college 2 hours away. I felt what I thought was freedom. I could do pretty much anything and not fear my mother finding out. I still got good grades and still graduated on time, but I partied and stayed up till all hours of the night. Some nights the sun would rise before I left my friend’s house.

Like I said I graduated on time from college and then the question was raised, ‘Now what?’ I decided to go to California with a group of friends. We wanted to live the Californian life. We wanted to own a night club, computer business, and whatever else seemed like fun.

We drove for six days to get to our new home that just fell into our laps. It was a great big house close to the ocean. Everything was looking good, for a time.

Of course, it was not long before things went down hill. Our friend that we moved out there for found himself needing to move to New York, very badly and within a month of the move he went to live with his parents. The five that moved out there were now on our own. We did not have jobs or friends out there. We only had the four bedroom house.

Things started to get rough and we started to fight with each other. At one point my friend, Ryan threatened to move out. He did not actually move out but we all were not happy campers.

Someone one day came up with the idea of studying all the different religions to find the one main truth. We
figured there must be a through line in all the religions. It’s not like we thought knowing the different religions would help, we were more curious. We assigned the different religions among our group. However, the only person that actually looked into his assigned religion was, Justin, who chose Christianity/ the Bible, since he already had one from his grandmother.

One or two others in the group talked with Justin about God before my encounter with God. The time line gets a little blurry because once God came into our group He came rushing in. The time in between each of us accepting God and the Bible to be true was no more than two months, maybe even shorter. That is five friends in two months.

Each one of us had a very clear moment when God came into our hearts. Notice I do not say, ‘When I found Jesus.’ I did not find Jesus, I did not find God. I was not looking for God or Jesus. I did not want that boring religion filled with self-sacrifice and rituals to be true. Thankfully God is not a god of religion or rituals. He is the God and so much more than anything we can fully understand.

He found his way into my heart one day as I was meditating on the cliffs in Santa Cruz, California. I did not think I was praying and did not bring anything. I had taken the walk with my friend and roommate Marc, who had brought Justin’s Bible (the only Bible in the house). After I asked the universe to send me a sign about what is true, something like a small voice in the back of my soul told me, ‘Pick up the Bible.’ I stood walked over to Marc and asked him to see the Bible that was next to him. He handed it to me or I picked it up and walked back to my area.

I did not flip through the pages or pick a verse to read. I did not want this to be true. I let the wind blow the pages. When the wind died down enough for the pages to stop flapping, the Bible was about open about half way. My eyes did not fall on the first line of either page though. I remember it was about half way down the page that I started to read. I read the verse, “Oh, hear me Lord in my meditation and deliver me from the evil doers.” It was Psalm 64 in the New King James Bible. The Lord did hear me in my meditation. Than as I accepted the Bible to be true something like a light or breath or a new life came into. I could have ignored it and said that it was nothing, but it was something special. It was indeed a new life and it was because I was open to any idea, even the ones I did not want to be opened to.

Since that day I’ve taken leaps and bounds in my journey, but have fallen and slipped. I pray honestly, earnestly and full hearten at times, yet other times I hardly pray at all. My life is not prefect, actually it’s far from it, but it is a true and full life. I do not have a husband or stable career path. I am not saved from the dangers in the world, but I am alive and have a God who I can lean on. I do not know where my life is going. I only know the next step I need to take is because life is a journey filled with little steps and you may trip and stumble but God will catch you, all you need to do is trust in him.

If I could tell you one thing I’ve learned it’s just that; life is a journey filled with steps and the only way you can get to your destination, your destiny, is to trust is the Lord our God, who loves you and has saved the world. All you need to do is be open to his guidance and love.

Proverbs 31

When I lived in California I had a mentor/ friend who gave advice that was simple to say, but hard to follow. Just recently  this friend, Janet, went to be with her heavenly Father in heaven. I know that she is with God because she did not only give this advice but lived it. She was a proverbs 31 woman and wanted me to be one too. That was her advice, “Be a proverbs 31 woman.” It was a simple, after reading the scripture I knew what she meant. You see proverbs 31 describes a strong, energetic, hard working woman who gets up early and stays awake working late.

For a while I have been saying, one day I’ll be that way, one day I’ll change into that. I had been saying that for more then a year; thinking I had all the time in the world to grow into kind of woman. However, when I heard that she had passed away from this life, I realized I did not have all the time in the world.  No where in the Bible does it say to wait until you are ready to follow God. It may say wait on God’s timing, but I was waiting for my own timing.

Realizing that time is short and knowing that I wanted to live for God fully. I started to read Proverbs 31 over and over. I have read it in at least 3 different translations. As I have studied it, almost every day, I have realized I am finally starting to realize what it means and  am becoming that type of woman.

I have posted the entire passage below, but there are a few verses that stuck out at me (these are from the ESV translation).

 

The first is only the first half of verse 15 which states, “She rises while it is yet night.” She is an early riser. I have not been too fond of this, but have been trying to wake up earlier and to my surprise it makes all the difference. I am not just waking up when I get to work, but already awake and ready to work. This allows me to be in a good mood for most of the day. I also realized that I have more time in the day. I can even write this blog right now, because I woke up early.

The second is “17 She dresses herself[b] with strength and makes her arms strong.”   She is strong. In the NLT the same verse says “She is energetic and strong, a hard worker.”  I sometimes feel society wants women to be girly and not strong. It always seems to surprise people when I don’t mind doing the hard work that takes muscle. I’ve never been a girly girl and thought that Christian women were suppose to be ‘lady’ like. Although, I have meant non-lady like Christian woman, who I love, I had thought that they were suppose to seem weaker. This is not exactly true though. We are suppose to be strong, hard working women. We should have a strong drive to work and help out physically.

The next verse that stood out to me was the second half of 18. “Her lamp does not go out at night.” This was easy for me and I was really happy to see this. I am a night owl and love staying up late. Of course it is harder to do when you remember verse 15 which says you should also rise early. Still this means more time for everything you want/ should be doing.

My favorite chunk of verses, the one I think sums the whole passage up is 25-26. “25 Strength and dignity are her clothing, and she laughs at the time to come. 26 She opens her mouth with wisdom,  and the teaching of kindness is on her tongue.”  A proverbs 31 woman is smart, dignified, kind and laughs. This paints a picture of happiness and contentment for me.

Studying this has begun to change my life. I can see the changes and feel them. I am taking charge with my writing and art work. I am working harder to be the woman God wants me to be, which is all that can be asked. I hope that by sharing this it will strengthen you and teach you that being a Biblical person is being strong, smart and awesome.

Here is the scripture I am referring to:

The Woman Who Fears the Lord

10 [a] An excellent wife who can find?
She is far more precious than jewels.
11 The heart of her husband trusts in her,
and he will have no lack of gain.
12 She does him good, and not harm,
all the days of her life.
13 She seeks wool and flax,
and works with willing hands.
14 She is like the ships of the merchant;
she brings her food from afar.
15 She rises while it is yet night
and provides food for her household
and portions for her maidens.
16 She considers a field and buys it;
with the fruit of her hands she plants a vineyard.
17 She dresses herself[b] with strength
and makes her arms strong.
18 She perceives that her merchandise is profitable.
Her lamp does not go out at night.
19 She puts her hands to the distaff,
and her hands hold the spindle.
20 She opens her hand to the poor
and reaches out her hands to the needy.
21 She is not afraid of snow for her household,
for all her household are clothed in scarlet.[c]
22 She makes bed coverings for herself;
her clothing is fine linen and purple.
23 Her husband is known in the gates
when he sits among the elders of the land.
24 She makes linen garments and sells them;
she delivers sashes to the merchant.
25 Strength and dignity are her clothing,
and she laughs at the time to come.
26 She opens her mouth with wisdom,
and the teaching of kindness is on her tongue.
27 She looks well to the ways of her household
and does not eat the bread of idleness.
28 Her children rise up and call her blessed;
her husband also, and he praises her:
29 “Many women have done excellently,
but you surpass them all.”
30 Charm is deceitful, and beauty is vain,
but a woman who fears the Lord is to be praised.
31 Give her of the fruit of her hands,
and let her works praise her in the gates.