The Ultimate Artist

The Ultimate Artist

Hello, folks. Today I’m going to be talking about something that God has really put on my heart the past couple of weeks, and my hope is that every one of you can take something away from it. To start off, I would like to give you a little background on what’s been going on in my life recently.

So a month ago I was diagnosed with having gastritis, and in order for me to feel the best that I can, I have to eat healthier. It has definitely been a challenge, especially since I am a HUGE snacker (no shame), but it has gotten progressively easier to pick up trail mix over a box of Cheez-its. This type of change has not only been evident in my physical life, but my spiritual one as well. A couple of Sundays ago during worship at my church, they were playing “Closer” by Bethel. The song chants for God to take us in and let us have a deeper understanding of who he is. During this song I prayed to him asking, “What can I do to be closer to you?”  and he replied with “Read the bible.” This struck me right in the heart because I think deep down inside I already knew the answer, but since I’m the stubborn little nugget that I am, God had to remind me how important it is to read the word.

At this point you’re probably thinking, “Wow Kassandra, that’s awesome! But please explain what in the world your eating habits have anything to do with your talk with God.” Well my friends, here is your explanation.

Reading the bible is a lot like eating healthy; our spirit needs spiritual food just like the flesh needs real food. What is spiritual food? Well, it can be just about anything that influences you. Just like you can decided whether to have Whataburger or grilled chicken for dinner, you can also decide on what words you choose to listen too or read. I know, tough blow, but it is absolutely true for all of us. We have free will to choose if we want to feed our spirit with sensual music or worship music, to go out every weekend or spend some quiet time with Jesus. If we ever want to have a more intimate relationship with God, we have to spend time with him. So that Sunday night I did exactly that and the results were eye-opening.

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I want you to observe the girl in the picture above. I’m sure when most people look at her they think, “Wow shes so pretty!” “Her tattoos are so cool,” “She looks genuinely happy.” Those are definitely thoughts that I had, but on top of those some may also think, “Dang, I wish I was her and I had her life.” I’m here tell that no, you don’t want her life. Why? Because you are God’s MASTERPIECE. Ephesians 2:10 says, “For we are God’s masterpiece. He has created us anew in Christ Jesus, so we can do the good things he planned for us long ago.” Humans are God’s most beautiful and treasured creations, and the greatest part is, is that he has created every single one of us for a divine purpose. Just like there are no two paintings that are exactly the same, the same goes for people. Yes, people have similarities, but no one was created identically inside and out (Unless there has been some secret cloning device created that no one knows about).

As an 18-year old about to go to college, it has been a journey finding out what I am going to do with the rest of my life. It has been especially difficult to do because there have been plenty of people who have told me, “You can do better than that” or, “You’ll probably change your major,” but I have realized that in the end those comments don’t matter because God has spoken to me and given me visions of becoming a Psychologist. His design for my life tops whatever anyone else thinks is best for me. With that being said, no matter what he has put in your heart to pursue it is NOT greater or lesser than what he has planned for someone else.

“There are different kinds of spiritual gifts, but the same spirit is the source of them all. There are different kinds of service, but we serve the same Lord. God works in different ways, but it is the same God who does work in all of us.” – 1 Corinthians 12:4-6

You are special, and you were made for a specific purpose. It only took God seconds to declare what he wanted on the Earth, like water, land, sunlight, animals; but he took his time creating what your laugh would sound like and how strong your love for chocolate would be. Nobody can ever take your place, and you cannot take anyone else’s. Friends, the Lord has put something inside of you that makes you different from any other person on this Earth, and as long as that passion glorifies him, he will smile at his masterpiece.

 

With love,

Kassie

8 Ways to Relax

8 Ways to Relax

Relaxation: something we all crave but somehow can never seem to truly get a hold of. This whole year has just flown by for me, and I feel like all I have done is work, study, write essays, and stress. The waves of my life have finally calmed a bit, and now that I have had time to reflect, I have realized it is time for a mental and physical detox.

Today, I am going to share with you 8 ways to relax! I feel that it is an important element of life that many tend to neglect, which is why I am bringing it to attention. So let’s get started!

1. Take a Bath

I know some may be skeptical about “swimming in their own filth,” and believe me I was in that same boat, but taking a bath is something I have grown to absolutely LOVE . If you’re ever worried about feeling dirty, just jump in the shower right before and take a quick rinse!

The warmth of a bath is just so comforting, (especially with a couple of lush products) and it actually helps relax your muscles! The other reason I love baths is that it’s also a time for me to unwind mentally. I’ll watch F.R.I.E.N.D.S. or Bob’s Burgers for a little laugh, which brings me to the next point.

 

2. Laugh a Little

Nothing helps relieve your furrowed brows more than laughter. Whenever I get home from a rough day of school or I know I have heavy homework assignments to do, I always pull up a couple of YouTube videos to make me laugh. Jenna Marbles and Nigahiga crack me up and always put a smile on my face. What makes you laugh? A funny friend? Embarrassing baby photos? Whoever or whatever it is, get that giggle source ASAP.

 

3. Have a Movie Marathon

We all have that one movie series we could watch over and over. Pull that guy up on the T.V. with some popcorn and candy, and you’re all set! Movie marathons are great because you kinda have a little escape from reality. If you want to make it a more fun experience, invite a friend! Y’all can put the movie on mute and make up your own dialogue. Whether you want to cry your eyes out over a Lifetime movie or laugh your head off with your bff, a movie is always a great way to chill out in the most comfortable setting!

 

4. Read a Book

This is somewhat similar to watching a movie in a sense that you escape the real world for a little while. I understand this isn’t everyone’s cup of tea, but I can honestly say I never feel more at peace than when I am reading a book. (Only exception is when I’m in God’s presence, of course)

 

5. Take a Walk

Taking walks are so awesome. First off, it’s a source of exercise so you release endorphins, which can improve your mood! Secondly, what is better than taking a stroll and admiring God’s beautiful creation?

Nothing, that is what. 😉

 

6. Listen to Chill music

Many studies have shown that music affects your mood, so why not listen to chill music when you need to chill out? Personally, I love listening to soft worship, Bon Iver, or instrumental music- especially in the car. So go ahead and make a playlist of songs that help you chillax. Whenever the nerves get to ya, you can just turn on the tunes and wa-lah!- good vibes instantly.

 

7. Pray

Prayer is the most powerful thing you can do if you are seeking relief. The comfort of God’s presence, and just even talking to Him can make any situation better. I always feel 10x better when I leave my situations in the hands of the Father and ask him for peace. He never fails to give it to me.

 

8. JUST BREATHE

All of the tips above mean nothing if you don’t actually take the time to take a step back and breathe in-and-out. You can’t truly relax if you are “reading” and also thinking of all the things you need to do in the back of your mind. Trust God in that He is bigger than your stress or your mountains. Believe me, God can crush those mountains like they’re grapes.

 

I hope that these tips were helpful! Like I said in the beginning, relaxation is needed, especially in a time such as this where everything is so fast paced. So go on- kick back and relax!

Much love,

Kassie ❤

 

He Takes it All

He Takes it All

The other day my friend, Nina, and I were discussing the topics of this bible plan we had been reading on YouVersion. If you don’t know, YouVersion is the ultimate digital bible. You can read the gospel solely on its own or you can do bible plans, which are daily lessons that follow with scripture. Her and I have both been in a really rough season lately, and the plan, “Finding God in the Ruins” spoke to both us, so we decided to kinda do it together. Nina was a couple of days ahead of me, and when she completed the last day she immediately contacted me. It took so much willpower to keep her from spilling the beans, but she never did and I am so glad she didn’t.

Y’all,

Did you know that when we are suffering God is too? When our hearts are broken from the hurtful words of a loved one, or even when we are physically hurt, God is there taking the pain too. To some this may be a “duh” realization, but when Matt Bays shared that I was blown away. I have always thought of God and pain like this: Here I am, being kicked when I am already down, and God is here but he is watching on the sidelines. I always knew something was wrong with that image, but I didn’t know how to make it right.

The truth is, Jesus is lying down beside us with no resistance and tears in his eyes. What hurts us hurts him, and that is because of what he endured on the cross. This image really came across to me when Nina and I were discussing the lesson. She said, “He is there with those girls who are in dark alleys getting raped; He is right there with them under those men.” What is even more eye-opening is that Jesus takes EVERYONE’S pain. There have been many times where I have felt so defeated and hurt, and when I imagine that pain times 7 billion, it is hard to fathom that Jesus willingly carries that for us. After this revelation, the relationship between God and pain has finally made sense to me. He is not a God who sits and watches on the sideline. Jesus walks towards us, takes our hand, and whispers, “I am here.”

 

Click here to watch the video that comes with the lesson. I really encourage downloading the app and doing the entire bible plan! Doing bible plans has totally helped strengthen my relationship with God daily, and I’m sure they would help you too.

Much love,

Kassie