Habits of Grace

For help keeping grace in mind and practical ways to dig deeper, check out David Mathis’ book habits of grace. 

I love that this book is all about enjoying Jesus in our real lives. Mathis’ focus is three-fold:

My translation…

  • Read his word, remembering that he wants to speak to you
  • Use what you’ve read to speak to him, believing that he wants to hear from you too
  • Ask others about their struggles and joys in seeking him through these “means of grace,” not to compare, but to listen and to learn more about who Jesus is 

Business Brainstorming

Help us vote on a company name, tagline, 2nd unique line and website first lines!

Pick one selection from each of the four categories below… or you can also suggest new ideas!

Potential Company Names

  1. J&J Content & Copy
  2. J&J Creative Content
  3. J&J Strategic Content
  4. J&J Cognition

Potential Taglines

  1. Content Strategy for literacy products
  2. Content Marketing for literacy products
  3. Stories that sell literacy products
  4. Literacy that sells literacy
  5. Creating content that sells literacy products
  6. Growing companies that sell literacy products

2nd Unique “line”

  1. Promoting literacy from beginning to end
  2. Dream. Focus. Achieve.
  3. Stories to grow

Potential Website Opening Lines

  1. We write stories to help you, your organization or business grow. We specialize in helping companies strategize and write marketing content for literacy products.
  2. We help companies selling literacy products grow their business.

Little Chirp

I have a number of children’s books up my sleeve… in case I ever have an unexpected moment! 😉 Some of them have been floating around in my mind for quite some time, but recently Little Chirp emerged, fresh and chiper, a whole story written and sketched. Maybe you’ll get to meet him someday!

Writing in the Future

Missed the first two posts in this series? Click on the links to first read Writing Past and Present

So I’ve mentioned that I’ve been working on a book and this blog, and that I’m open to freelance writing. What I didn’t tell you is that I’ve also been training to be a copywriter! I’m absolutely loving the challenge and learning I’m experiencing from this unexpected new direction. I’m planning to “launch” my new business this spring so stay tuned!

NON-FICTION BOOK

When I say I’m working on a book, I actually mean, I was working on a book, but that has taken a backseat to life, work and lately, an opportunity to learn how to earn some income from writing. This surprise investment adventure appeared suddenly, but has been exciting!

You see, last year found me constantly juggling what I wanted to do with what I realistically had time for… not to mention, houses are expensive! While I hoped writing would eventually earn me some side money, it was a hobby, limited to non-work time.

It was that classic scenario – I’ll never make money at this if I don’t put some time in, but how can I put time in unless I have some unavailable?

AWAI

Then I stumbled on American Writers and Illustrators Inc. More specifically, their Accelerated Program for Six Figure Copywriting. It sounded too good to be true, but I decided to dive in, re-arranging priorities a bit so that I could start the self-paced program with some regularity. My goal is to earn some side money, working within limited hours, so I have time to do other things – like finish my book!

Between life and the holidays, I’ve finally settled into a realistic rhythm for myself with this Copywriting program. Now, three months in, I’m about halfway through the 90-day program. The learning curve has been steep, but fascinating. I’m been more and more impressed with AWAI and gaining clarity about what “the writer’s life” looks like for me. (If you’re interested, check out their free webinars. This one is a good introduction to the copywriting world.)

BONNEJOURNEY

The awesome thing about blogging is you can schedule your posts in advance, so as long as I stay ahead, I don’t have to write as often as I post. I’m surprised at how much Bonnejourney has taught me though – from voice to technology – and I plan to continue with it. Still, it is primarily something I enjoy, something I fit in after work, not something practical in terms of income.

Lately, all of these writing pieces seem to be coming together…  writing of the past, present and future are blurring a bit. I’m still working out the details, but I SO APPRECIATE the opportunity to share this journey with you. Enjoy today!

Facebook Facelift?

Social Media

I have such a love/hate for social media. I love that I can instantly connect with friends in faraway places. I hate that merely signing in makes me feel a bit like I’m in Times Square – flashes of color everywhere and very little empty space.

Social media has slowly and suddenly claimed a place in our culture and this trend is only projected to grow. How we use it is up to us – individually and culturally. How do we use social media in a way that takes advantage of all of the positive aspects while not allowing it to consume too much time? How do we balance face time with real time?

I know I’m not alone in asking these questions and I’d love to hear your thoughts on social media in today’s culture.

Time to De-clutter

In the meantime, as I’ve been de-cluttering my closets and pantry shelves after owning them for a year, I realized that it’s been over 15 years (as in never!) since I’ve de-cluttered my online media presence. I started wondering what it would look like to do a facebook facelift… Maybe start a twitter account – mostly because the little bird is so cute!

Basically, actually take the time to consider and choose what I’m “on” and what “active” means for me in this season. Is it possible to have a balanced online presence? Active accounts that are used for good, but tools vs. life-suckers? As more apps come – to press in or delete?

What do you think? How do determine the role media plays in your life? Have you ever done a facebook facelift? What does that even mean?

 

Thrive

Two Books, One “Problem”

So a couple weeks ago I mentioned the nonfiction book Godspace. I’ve also been reading Thrive and it has been interesting to me how many overlapping themes both books have covered. The two books are written from two very different perspectives with different goals and in many ways are not the same at all.

Thrive

The author of Thrive is the cofounder of the Huffington Post and a highly successful business women in today’s culture. She was inspired to write this book asking us to consider (and re-consider) our culture’s definition of success and the impact it has on our “true” success. She explores an alternative definition, success based on more than money and power, encouraging readers to get sleep, unplug, and give to others. 

Same Difference

Here is one common theme – the importance of self-care, as distinguished and equally necessary to pouring out. The question: How do we define success?

Both authors shared from both their experience of culture and their own personal lives. Both were passionate about what they wrote and backed up their stories and ideas with outside perspectives.

A Second Revolution

I enjoyed the many and diverse quotes sprinkled throughout Thrive, including those of a more classical tradition. Huffington is of Greek ancestry and also shares about the important people in her life, especially her mother, sister and daughters. She says that it is going to be the WOMEN in our world who primarily lead the revolution for us to SLOW DOWN and to REDEFINE what really matters. She suggests that the first women’s liberation movement was just that – the “first” – and that now a second is needed.

Recommend

I did not agree with everything Huffington wrote, but I found her writing intelligent, her perspective on culture spot on and her candor refreshing. If you are looking for a perspective that challenges the status quo (and simultaneously reflects everything about it), give this book a read. The questions raised in both books are good ones, even if the solutions are only partially shared.

I’d love to hear your thoughts on the ideas discussed in either book!!

Reflecting on 2017

2017 was a difficult year. Challenging relationships at work, messiness in community, concern over friends and family who were struggling with various challenges of their own led to a physical response.

“Stress” we call it, but often we are unaware of just HOW MUCH damage it can do. Unconsciously and consciously, I absorbed the anxiety, the “cares” of those around me until I felt unwell. Feeling thus lead to more worry about “What was wrong” only exacerbating the root.

I felt gratitude over tests stating I was healthier than ever, but still I struggled to believe everything was okay. I have no doubt there was a spiritual element to all of this throughout, both reason to confess and circumstances that were just hard. I may never fully understand, but some things I have been reminded of –

There is VALUE in recognizing our limits – stating our boundaries, asking for help…

Sometimes, patient endurance despite seemingly random, but nonsensical circumstances is all you can do…

and finally, our thoughts, words, and actions impact our perspective, so choose carefully.

You are loved, even in the midst of your struggle, and I encourage you to keep paying attention (listening!) to the One who made you, learning to rest in Him.

From last January
Beloved

From the Listen series
Where is the voice of love in my struggle?

From the Rest series
Learning to Rest

GodSpace

One of my favorite authors has a new book out!

I was especially pumped about GodSpace before reading it because it promised to include topics that Keri Wyatt Kent has written about previously, in books which have challenged and encouraged me, while expanding in new directions.

Topics such as: Sabbath, Hospitality, Worship, Simplicity, Gratitude, Generosity, and Critical Thinking.

I was especially curious to see the big picture of how creating space for God connects to each of these topics from her perspective – years spent living and writing – knowing that I am particularly passionate about this concept and some of it’s implications.

I started reading GodSpace over the break, and I have not been disappointed!

It reaffirmed ideas I’m particularly passionate about in ways that encourage me to pursue living, reading and writing in a way that is unique to me. It also fleshed out inherent challenges in each of the topics presented, many of which I have or am wrestling with, and thus, also serves as a reminder that all of life is a journey. I appreciated hearing from someone who agrees spiritual practices are worth writing about, and who has gifts that are both similar and distinct from mine.

Highly recommend!

That’s a (Rest) wrap!

Last week wrapped up our series on Rest. If you missed a week, here are all of the posts in one place for your convenience.

How was this topic for you? Share with us what has been encouraging, challenging, etc.