Hello lovelies! I meant to get this posted sooner but, as you may or may not know, I've had the stomach flu pretty badly, so I haven't been up to much posting (which is why there was an absence from the Weekly Princess Inspiration over at www.thekingsprincessmagazine.weebly.com) :( I'm still not feeling the greatest, not 100% better, so prayers would still be appreciated. :) <3
Anyways, just quickly before I lose my energy for the day, I just wanted to drop this quick post to remind everyone of the contest deadline for the story contest I'm hosting, "Once Upon a Time"! The deadline is quickly approaching and the last day to submit entries is this coming Tuesday, February 28th, 2017! So if you want to enter but haven't yet, make sure you get it in before this date! :D
Can't wait to read your stories <3
Have you ever stood in front of the ocean, shielding your eyes, squinting, to see how far it goes?
But you never find the ending, do you?
The ocean is one of my favorite places in the world. Hearing the thunder of waves crashing into the sand that squishes between your toes and feeling the cold water hit your ankles. These are things I love.
And so many times I've stood in front of the ocean and looked out, trying to see as far as I could. But I've never found the end of the water. It seems to go on forever.
And you know the love of Jesus?
It's like that.
His love is strong and beautiful. His love goes as far as what you can see and even beyond that. His love really does go on forever. There is no beginning and no end. He has and will love you forever.
And maybe that's why I love the ocean so much. Because it reminds me of His great, unending love. It reminds me that the one who created something as beautiful and powerful as the ocean, loved me enough to make one of me too.
But you know what?
Sometimes we forget His love.
Because the world is so distracting, isn't it? Sometimes it distracts us so much that we turn away from the greatest romance of our lives because the world has caught our focus instead.
We get caught up in the love of this world. The temporal, fading love this world offers us that will never last. The love we see in Hollywood and the love we see in the media. We reach for it in every way we can, thinking it'll make us complete. By dressing to impress, flirting to get attention, and going from one boyfriend to the next, searching. Searching for that endless love.
We get caught up in the dreams of this world. The cheap, plastic dreams that promise if you get a good education, a good job with benefits, and climb the corporate ladder, then maybe you'll make your mark on the world. We reach for it by constantly wearing ourselves out working so hard to make that next sale, make more money, get that big job. Searching for something to satisfy.
We get caught up in all of it. All of these things that we think will satisfy us. All of these things that we think will fulfill us. We get caught up in it because somewhere along the way, we got distracted from the Lover of our soul that whispers His love to us in everything.
That rainbow after the storm? It's His promise to you. That hot summer day where the sun kisses your cheeks and makes you feel free? It's His whisper of joy found in Him. That ocean stretching farther than you could ever see? It's His promise of unending love.
So here's my question for you, dear heart.
You know the truth. You know His love. You know how much you mean to Him. You know that He is the true Lover of your soul. You know that He is crazy about you. You know that nothing you ever do will ever make Him walk away. You know that you make Him smile. You know that His love is everything you will ever need.
So is He everything that you want?
Are you willing to make Him all that your heart desires, whatever that means?
Maybe it means letting go of your earthly ideas of love to grasp a hold of this crazy, radical love He is offering to you. Maybe it means walking away from a dream of this world to take a hold of His great and holy dreams for your life. Maybe it means losing things close to you to stand with Him. Maybe it means being rejected by the world so that you can find your acceptance and identity in Him.
Here's what I promise you.
He is all you will ever need. He is everything.
Run back to Him, dear one. Whatever has distracted you or taken you away from Him, run back to His arms. Remember that He is your true Lover.
Let Him be all that your heart ever wants.
And next time you stand at the ocean? Let those crashing waves remind you that His love never ends.
His love is everything.
"But what things were gain to me, these I have counted loss for Christ. Yet indeed I also count all things loss for the excellence of the knowledge of Christ Jesus my Lord, for whom I have suffered the loss of all things, and count them as rubbish, that I may gain Christ and be found in Him, not having my own righteousness, which is from the law, but that which is through faith in Christ, the righteousness which is from God by faith; that I may know Him and the power of His resurrection, and the fellowship of His sufferings, being conformed to His death, if, by any means, I may attain to the resurrection from the dead. Not that I have already attained, or am already perfected; but I press on, that I may lay hold of that for which Christ Jesus has also laid hold of me. Brethren, I do not count myself to have apprehended; but one thing I do, forgetting those things which are behind and reaching forward to those things which are ahead, I press toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus."
So, I'm a bit late getting this post up (ah, this week just flew by!), but I have some super exciting news to share with you anyway! :D
I've had the honor of joining the writing team for Christ Centered Girls magazine as some of you may know (www.christcenteredgirls.wordpress.com) and I absolutely love this ministry! The founder of CCG, Kylie Jacobs, is an absolute gem! To find out more about CCG, feel free to check out their website! :)
But the exciting news I have to share with you is that CCG just released a brand NEW issue, the February/March issue!! It's such a fun, uplifting issue and you should totally check it out! :) You can view the issue at this link (don't forget to submit your email address to receive future issues straight to your inbox!):
This issue features interviews with The George Twins, Carmen Justice (formerly from 1GN!), and Christi Given! All of these interviews were super fun to read through. :)
This issue also features lots of fashion/beauty advice and some delicious smoothie recipes! The DIY Valentine's Day gift ideas were also a blast (I know Valentine's Day is over now, but you can still use them to surprise someone special!)! Kylie also has a special article featured on staying pure which is super encouraging! There's also an article on faith/fear which is encouraging as well! And much more!
So, as you can probably tell, I'm excited and think you should check this out! :)
Yay, for the new CCG issue!! ♥
Okay, so here's the truth.
Most single people, especially single girls, dislike Valentine's Day.
Can I even go as far as to say that some singles even hate Valentine's Day?
They dread the cut-out hearts, the roses, the cards, the heart balloons at every store. Their heart aches to see the couples walking hand in hand through the park or sitting laughing at the mall as they share a milkshake. I mean, let's face it, even Snapchat has caught the "love bug," and has filters all about hearts and pink.
So what's the single girl to do on Valentine's Day?
Hide out in her room until all the roses and chocolates disappear off the grocery store shelves? Avoid going to the mall or parks to avoid seeing the cute couples? Even turn away from love altogether?
Well, girl, let's get one thing straight.
You don't have to hate Valentine's Day.
That's right. You heard me.
As a single lady, you do not have to hate Valentine's Day. It does not have to be your most dreaded day of the year.
In fact, I'm going to even go into the unknown territory of assuring you that you can party and celebrate this day just as much (if not more so) than any couple can!
Now before you stop scrolling through this post and claim me as a weirdo, let me explain.
You see, you're a princess.
If you've been following this blog or my magazine ministry at all, you know I strongly believe in the royal identity of each and every one of God's children.
As children--daughters--adopted into the family of the Most High God, our identity has changed too.
We are no longer the sinner orphans with a future of death and shame. We are His redeemed princess with a future of life and hope, because of Him.
Girl, get excited!!
Do you have any idea what this means?!
We are His PRINCESS! His chosen one! His loved one! And He is our Prince Charming! He is our one true Love, the only Lover who could ever satisfy our soul.
You know that desire inside of you to be loved? That desire you've sought to quench in every way you can think of? Boys, money, popularity, internet. And you know how you walk away every time feeling more empty than before?
It's because those things were never meant to fill you, dear one.
The only One who can ever fill your heart is the One who knows your heart better than you do. Jesus, your Prince Charming, is the only Love that can ever make you complete.
His love is all that can satisfy.
So, dear beautiful girl, won't you let me take your hand and look deep into those gorgeous eyes of yours as I tell you something very special?
You are amazing. Having a boyfriend does not define this. Whether you have a boyfriend on Valentine's Day or not doesn't define your worth. You are worth so much more than that. You are beautiful. And if any guy has ever made you feel less than that, do me the honor of turning your back on him and letting him know that Jesus thinks you're heart-stopping gorgeous, because that's just how He made you. And, darling girl, you're loved. Loved, loved, loved. So much more than you could ever imagine. So much more than you can comprehend. And so much more than you even know that you need.
He's crazy about you.
And honestly? His love is all that matters on Valentine's Day, because earthly love could never come close to His love for you.
So won't you join me in changing the world's mindset on Valentine's Day?
Why don't we make this Valentine's Day the best of them all?
Here are just a few ideas...
1) Spend your day with Jesus. Read His love letter to you, the Bible. Write your own love letter to Him. Sing worship songs at the top of your lungs. Declare His goodness from the rooftops (not literally, I don't want you to fall or anything)!
2) Give love away. Because Valentine's Day isn't supposed to be an exclusive couples holiday (sorry, couples, but it's actually not just about you). Give flowers to your mom. Send chocolate to the girl who feels forgotten. Hug a friend who feels lonely. Smile at the person down the street.
3) Tell someone about Love that will never leave. It's inevitable you probably know someone with a broken heart on Valentine's Day. Maybe their heart wasn't broken by a boyfriend or girlfriend exactly, but maybe it was broken by a hard situation. Won't you tell them about Jesus' love? His love isn't meant to be kept to yourself. It's meant to be given away.
4) Party! Oh, girl, live it up today. Buy that chocolate (you know me, get it fair trade!), splurge on that dress you've been wanting, get those flowers! Oh, and who doesn't love celebrating with some pizza?! Get those friends over and celebrate! You're a princess! Your Prince Charming adores you! Celebrate His love. ♥
Girls, let's make this the best Valentine's Day ever.
Let's show the world that Valentine's Day is, yes, all about love, but we know the greatest Love that could ever be. Let's introduce the world to His love tomorrow.
Oh, and don't forget that chocolate. (I've already eaten a whole bar of it).
Happy Valentine's Day, fellow single princesses. ♥
Girls!! I have some super exciting news! :D
As most of you lovely readers probably know, since last August I've been interning with an AMAZING magazine ministry called Crown of Beauty. I had the privilege of helping with our latest issue, the GLOW issue that came out last month! If you haven't had the chance to check that out yet, I highly encourage you to do so, it had some incredible articles in it!
Crown of Beauty founder, Livy, asked me if I would be interested in heading up the next issue of the magazine and I am so thrilled to be on this adventure! Me and my team are excitedly working on this issue, the BRAVE issue! (Super, super excited that the issue theme is bravery!)
But we want YOU to be excited too because we have a fun, special way for you to get involved in this issue! We are having a Cover Girl contest and all the details you will need can be found right here:
If you are a young lady who wants to share your story of a time when you had to be brave and show courage despite your fear, we'd absolutely love to hear your story! But hurry and check it out because the contest won't be up for very long!
Below I have the video I made for Crown of Beauty, sharing about how I got connected with them and a little bit more about our contest! Check it out :)
Okay, so to be honest, writing the dedication for my books is one of my favorite parts. No, not because it's the least difficult part. You see, writing the dedication isn't that easy for me.
Since I was eight I've been writing stories and "books." I was twelve when I finished my first actual book (yes, it was a real book! 100 pages, haha!). At this point, I began writing dedications for each of my books to come. All 13 of them. But the three books I've published have been the most special to dedicate.
I dedicated my first book, I Dare You, to my twin sister. And rightfully so, because she inspires me and encourages me to always pursue my dreams. She was the writer I always wanted to be like. My second book, The King's Princess, was dedicated to the faithful subscribers of my magazine, because that book would've never happened without their support of the magazine! My third book, Worth it All, was dedicated to my Rachel, and I wouldn't have dreamed of dedicating it any other way. No explanation needed there.
You see, the dedications in my books are so special to me because these books are my heart and soul. My books contain pieces of my life and all of my stress, tears, and joy poured into writing them. The person I'm dedicating the book to has to have played a vital role in my journey of not only writing, but also in my life. (So if one day I dedicate a book to you, know how special that is ;))
Yet if you have any of my books, you also know that in each one of them the dedication is also to my King, my Jesus. :) I have chosen to dedicate every one of my published books, and all the ones to come, to Jesus first. Because without Him I am literally nothing. Without Him there is no point in the book or even in living.
The other day as I was looking at my dedications and thinking of how much they mean to me, this thought crossed my mind...
What if we lived our lives like a dedication?
When you're dedicating something to someone you're telling them that you're giving it to them, you're honoring them with it.
So what if we lived our lives like a dedication to Jesus?
What if we chose to give Him every part of our lives and honor Him with it?
Living a life of dedication to Jesus isn't always easy. It'll cost you. You won't always understand His plan. You won't always have mountain top experiences. You will walk through the valley and the fire.
But just like writing a book that causes lots of stress and tears throughout the process?
It'll be worth it in the end.
So I dare you this week to focus on how you can live this dedicated life to Jesus. If your life was like a book to the world, would it be obvious to the readers that the dedication was to Jesus?
Make Him your all-consuming passion and your all-consuming desire. Make everything you do something that brings Him honor.
Dedicate it all to Him, because He gave it all up for you. ♥
Calling all my writers out there!
Once upon a time...
The way every great story or tale usually begins. The way all of the fairytale princess movies have started out, until they famously end with "happily ever after."
It can be so easy to read these great tales and sigh as we close the book, wishing that we could have our own "once upon a time" tale of heroism, adventure, and romance.
But the truth?
Your once upon a time has already begun. Your great tale of heroism and adventure is awaiting you. Every day with Jesus is an adventure and the greatest romance of all time as you fall deeper in love with the great Prince who died for you. Your story is being written by the greatest Author of all time and your "once upon a time" began on the day your first cry entered this world.
Yet the story that fills your pages is up to you every day. Will you choose His path? Or your own? What will your great "once upon a time" tell?
Dear, writers, I have a special announcement for you! Today I am announcing my first "Once Upon a Time Story Contest"! The contest ends February 28th, 2017, so check out all the details today! :) If you're a writer who enjoys writing fiction, this is just for you! Ready for the details? Here we go...
Begins: February 1, 2017
Deadline for entries: February 28, 2017
Winner announced: March 18, 2017
Maximum of 2,000 words. Fiction story can be anywhere between that word count, but cannot exceed that amount.
Type your story in a Microsoft Word document in Times New Roman font and font size, 12.
Only include story title and story content in your first document.
In a separate document include story title, your first and last name, and your age. You may also include a short bio and picture for the blog to be used if you are chosen as a winner.
Our judge will not know the authors of the stories when she is judging, which is why we need two separate documents. Do not include your name in the document with your story, but do not forget to include the story title!
The story theme is what I wrote above! Use this to launch your story ideas and plot. Whether you want to write about princesses, or your very own once upon a time adventure, use the above paragraph to create inspiration!
Please submit all entries to: firstname.lastname@example.org
If you have any questions, contact me using my email address or the contact form here on my blog!
Grand prize: Winner's choice of 1 copy of either of my three books, "I Dare You," "The King's Princess," or "Worth it All." Winner's story featured right here on my blog and also featured in my monthly e-magazine, The King's Princess!
Runner up: The runner up will have their story featured on my blog and will also receive a PDF version of my first book "I Dare You."
Are you ready, dear writers? Get set...go!
Our Special Guest Judge for the Contest!
Our special guest judge who will be judging the stories for the Once Upon a Time Story Contest will be...MacKenzie Morganthal!
I'm so grateful, Kenzie agreed to judge for this contest! Kenzie has been a writer for over ten years and has authored her first debut novel, Not Abandoned which released on May 30, 2015. She has lots of wisdom to share regarding writing and I know she will do a great job as a judge for this contest!
Thank you, Kenzie!
Isabella Morganthal (20) is a homeschool high school graduate who loves Jesus with all of her heart. She is a drummer, writer, creative arts director, and modern-day abolitionist.