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Wednesday, November 26, 2014

It's The Holidays and You're All Alone!


One of the many challenges of being single is dealing with loneliness during the holidays. I've been there....couples everywhere....parties to attend alone....dealing with family pressure, etc, etc, and BA HUMBUG!

Being single and alone can zap the holiday spirit and turn your focus off the true meaning of Thanksgiving and Christmas. One year I was so not into Christmas that I didn't put up a tree nor buy presents. I realize that some people generally don't, but I usually love the festivities of Christmas. The next year my girlfriend encouraged me to celebrate. She went with me to buy a new tree and helped me decorate it. We had such a good time that the following year I invited her family over for Christmas Eve. We exchanged presents, had a good meal and so much fun. That year turned out to be the first year of an over 25-year Christmas Eve tradition. The tradition expanded to include my family and some close friends and now Christmas Eve at my house is the standard. Adding a husband to the mix now makes it even more special.

My advice to singles is to put the focus back on the true meaning of Thanksgiving and Christmas..being thankful and Jesus Christ. Don't focus on your marital status...focus on giving of yourself just like Christ gave to us!

Here are some tips:
  • Help serve Thanksgiving meals to the homeless or support some community event for the less fortunate.
  • Create your own Holiday tradition with family and friends.
  • Prepare a holiday meal for a needy family.
  • Attend a watch night service at your church or communtiy church on New Year's Eve as opposed to partying. Doing so can help you focus on the New Year and steps to create a better You!
Don't let this holiday season zap your spirit because you are single. Use your singleness to encourage someone else this holiday season. Remember...it's not about you!

Making Your Own Holiday Traditions

Monday, November 10, 2014

Making Your Own Holiday Traditions

The winter holiday season is upon us and it is a time when simple pleasures often mean the most. Sitting by a warm fire with cousins on a cold night. Opening a homemade gift from a child. Savoring the aroma of a delicious holiday bread baking in the oven. Reading a heartfelt, handwritten message from someone you love. Gathering several generations of your family together to sing a holiday song that has special meaning for all of you. These and other simple pleasures can bring you close as a family.

Identifying What Gives Your Life Meaning

Enjoying simple pleasures begins with knowing your values, or what's most important to you and your family. Everyone in your household may have a different idea about this, so it's worth taking time to sit down together and talk about the things that you find most worthwhile. As you explore simple ways to celebrate the holidays, get as many ideas as you can from your family. They'll be more likely to enjoy the simple traditions you come up with together if everyone is involved in the conversation.

Things To Do Together

The holiday season abounds with simple pleasures that everyone in your family can enjoy. Most communities offer festive activities that cost little or nothing, and you can find others in the beauty of the natural world -- the winter sky, the evergreens in a local park, the first frost on a windowpane.
  • Take a winter nature walk in your neighborhood. Notice which animals are out and about, which ponds have frozen over, and how many different types of evergreen trees you can spot. The National Audubon Society has chapters in many states and has ideas on outdoor activities to do together as a family.
  • Go star-gazing. Make the most of a crisp, clear winter night by looking at constellations, the patterns of stars in the sky. Search for "Star Attractions" on the National Geographic website .
Organize a winter sports outing. Depending on the weather, you might go sledding, ice-skating, or hiking along a trail in a community park.
  • Bake a holiday bread or cookies. Make it a family project, with one person choosing the recipe, another shopping for ingredients, and everyone chopping fruit or nuts together. Make an extra loaf or batch to take to an older neighbor or family that could use extra cheer this year.
  • Invite relatives to join you for a potluck holiday brunch or buffet instead of a formal sit-down meal. Serve punch; hot mulled cider; or coffee, tea, and hot chocolate instead of more expensive drinks. Just remember that if you've had relatives over for a sit-down meal in the past, they may expect this again. It's thoughtful to let them know well in advance that you plan to do things differently this year.
  • Sing songs of the season. Invite relatives and friends to join you in a holiday sing-along and to bring any instruments that they play. Search online for free or low-cost holiday song apps for your computer or smartphone if you need the words, music, or ideas on what to sing. Or take part as a family in a similar event at a house of worship or community center.
  • Share holiday memories in a cozy setting. Gather around a fireplace. Linger over a candlelit holiday meal. Pile into a big bed in your pajamas or bathrobes on a holiday morning. The warm setting will help to inspire warm memories that everybody can enjoy.
  • Read a holiday story together. Ask a children's librarian for suggestions that might interest your child or teenager. Or try a picture book like Chris Van Allsburg's The Polar Express (Houghton Mifflin, 2009), Eric A. Kimmel's Hershel and the Hanukkah Goblins (Holiday House, 1994), or Karen Katz's My First Ramadan (Holt, 2007) or My First Chinese New Year (Holt, 2012).
  • Go to a free holiday concert, recital, or pageant. Check the calendar of events in your local newspaper or on its website to learn about the options. Talk with your family about these and try the one that sounds most interesting to all of you.
  • Take part in a toy, food, or clothing drive. During the holidays, many communities have drives to collect toys, food, or warm clothes for families that need them. Call the mayor's office to find out which organizations sponsor these collection drives in your area.
  • Call an animal shelter and find out what pets need at holiday times. If you or your children love animals, your family might like to help abandoned pets at holiday times. Call a local shelter and find out if you could volunteer for a few hours or if the shelter would appreciate gifts of food, chew toys, or similar items.
  • Reach out to help others. Ask each family member to research a charity or an aid organization of their choice, dedicated to helping others, and then present their idea at a family dinner or meeting. Listen to each other's ideas, and vote to decide on which philanthropy to help and the amount of your donation.
By enjoying simple pleasures, you'll be sending the message that what's most important at holiday times is being together as a family -- not spending money on costly activities or gifts. This will bring you closer as a family and remind you that, whether your budget is large or small, you will always have many wonderful ways to enjoy each other's company during the holidays.


Need help with your Holiday budget?  Cick here:

Tuesday, November 4, 2014

JewelScent Giveaway

The Holidays are upon us.  It's time to mix and mingle, give and receive and love with all your heart. 

 

One way you can share your love is giving a JewelScent Product.  JewelScent offers scented candles, aroma beads, wax tarts, soaps and body scrubs....all with a hidden ring inside valued between $10-$7500.  SAY WHAT?  Yes... a gorgeous ring is a bonus of this high quality product.  







Want to try the product for free?  I'm giving away a free wax tart as my first Holiday Shopping Giveaway of the season. 

 Winner will be selected December 1 and we will then move on to my second giveaway!  click on the Rafflecopter below to enter!

 JewelScent will make an awesome unique Christmas gift for friends and loved ones!

 If you would like to browse and/or  purchase a JewelScent product, click here! 

 a Rafflecopter giveaway

Friday, October 10, 2014

Love Your Solo!

In the same way, a woman who is no longer married or has never been married can be more devoted to the Lord in body and in spirit, while the married woman must be concerned about her earthly responsibilities and how to please her husband. I Corinthians 7:34

 

Now that I have a few years in marriage, I understand when people say that marriage takes time and work. You need extra energy to coordinate schedules, maintain the house and find time to keep Pappy happy- especially if you work outside the home! I also now understand how marriage can take time away from God.  When I was single, I was able to study, pray and worship in my home and at church when I pleased.  If I didn't feel like doing something around the house, I wouldn't.  This is one of the things I miss from my single life.  Don't get me wrong, I REALLY don't want to go back there.  But I do miss my faithful quiet times with God.  


What a great advantage for singles- the freedom to study, serve and worship God as you please.  Enjoy this time. Love this solo life right now!  Find your purpose in God and pursue it with your whole heart; for when you become one with someone- it's no longer you but us!  Take advantage of this opportunity to enjoy life now fully surrendered to God and walking in purpose.

Monday, September 8, 2014

Confessions of a Single Woman: I Wanted A Man for the Wrong Reason

 


Tamara Davis



Returning Guest Author Tamara Davis
In my last "Confessions" post, I spoke of meeting a guy and really believing I was ready to be married. I went on to share it didn't work out and why. God showed me that marriage would not deliver me from my issues because that’s His job. He also showed me marriage would not rescue me. Even after the Lord corrected me on all that, I still had one more reality to face. I wanted a man for the wrong reason. My reason for wanting to be with someone was birthed out of years of rejection by man after man. I wanted a man just so that I could say to people "I have someone.” I used to dream about changing my Facebook relationship status and the feeling of accomplishment that went along with it. I wanted the news to somehow filter back to my exes that this treasure of a woman was now taken. I wanted to stick it to every man that had ever done me wrong. Yes, I, Tamara, who loves God with everything in me, secretly wanted revenge.

I say secretlybecause I would never SAY this out loud or admit this to anyone. But how many of you know that God looks on the heart? He knows the secret things hidden away and wants to get rid of those awful secrets. I pray and speak Psalms 51:10 over my life because having a pure heart and a heart towards God is high on His priority list, as it should be on ours. Once I admitted my secret to myself, God began to work in me. He already knew I felt this way but He was waiting for me to be honest and real about it so He could pluck it up because what He did not plant, He will pluck up. (Matthew 15:13) He wants the glory in everything so wanting a man for my own selfish reasons will not bring Him honor or glory. I have often said you cannot conquer what you don't confront and the time arrived for me to conquer this.

The process of plucking was painful and took a while but it was well worth it. I first acknowledged that I didn't know why I should want to be married. I then listened out for God to show me in His word, through sermons and through sources from Him, not the world, to let me know why I should desire to be married. I also allowed God to renew my mind and cleanse my heart from bitterness, blame, emptiness and sadness. I started spending more time with Him and my desire for Him grew more and more. I began to desire wholeness more than I desired a man. I opened my heart for God to be my everything and my more than enough. This went on for months and still continues! I was recently out for a walk one day, just meditating on all the great work God has done in my heart and for the first time in my life, I said out loud "Lord, I no longer want a man so that I can show and tell PEOPLE I have one. Lord, I am ready to boast in You so that I can tell people ‘Look what the Lord has done! It is marvelous in my eyes!’” In other words, I want a husband for the glory of God, not for the glory of Tamara. I want to tell the world about my process of being made whole! This, my friends, was another major milestone in my deliverance. Talk about a renewed mind?!? My heart is now free! I wish you all could see inside my spirit because it is the most beautiful feeling in the world to be free. Hallelujah!!!

Friends, if you secretly or outwardly feel this way, you are NOT ready for a relationship. You’re not ready because you’ll make your mate your God, hurt a good person or end up getting yourself in a hurtful situation. It is imperative that you allow the Lord to be your everything. This doesn’t apply to just marriage. If you feel this way about a job (wanting a good job just to prove somebody wrong), a degree (want a college degree just to “show them”) or things (got to have all that stuff just to impress people who probably aren’t even paying attention to you), your heart is not right. I implore you to pray Psalms 51:10 over your life and let the Lord cleanse your heart. The Lord wants us to enjoy everything His word says we can have but He doesn’t want us to have the wrong motive for why we want it. I do not believe God will give us anything our hearts can’t handle. Sure, we can go out and get it on our own, but it won’t be the best because it’ll be of the flesh and the flesh profits nothing. (John 6:63) Every good and perfect gift comes from the Lord, not from the works of our flesh. (James 1:17) The Lord has promised us strength to make it through anything, especially during the challenging times of singleness. If you are like I used to be, please start the conversation with God and partner with women who have successfully walked out their singleness, whether they are married now or not. We're here for you! Please know, however, when you ask a woman of God to help you, you should get answers based on the word of God, which will be contrary to the comfort of your flesh. Ask me how I know...

Let's pray:
Father, Almighty, loving God, I praise You for Your wondrous love and power. Lord, I lift up every single person reading this. I pray that You renew us with strength every day. I pray that we begin to develop the most loving, intimate relationship with You we've ever had. By way of Your Holy Spirit teach us how to surrender to the power of Your love. Fill us everyday with Your presence, love and care. Show us how much promise You have on our lives, with or without a spouse. Lord, nobody can love us like you can, even the most love filled mate can't do it. Thank You for loving us like only a Father can love His children! In the name of Jesus, Amen.

Want to hear more confessions from single women?  Consider these titles:

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