To my radiant, brave, and bold sister,

First of all, I love you.  I love you for being a woman because it’s honestly the greatest superpower in life. Men will never understand the beauty we hold and the strength we carry. It’s such a gift but it’s also the reason we’re ALWAYS confused, emotional, and in need of chocolate. Amen?

taylor_swift_high_five
Me & You

Let me be the one to remind you that darling, you are not like the rest.  You, unrepeatable, never to exist again, you.  Sure as women we can agree on our moods and emotions changing but aren’t we more than that? You are an unrepeatable work of beauty. You will leave others breathless.  Not one thing, person, or object can embody what you do. Own it!

Anything God has revealed and said in scripture is the most trustworthy, realest, and purest love you will hear out of someones mouth and it’s power probably frightens you, but you need to let it be the treasure of your whole heart.

I’m not sure where you are right now, what you are doing, who you are with, or what is attacking you. Reading this either makes you turn away, laugh, or feel unworthy to be loved so much. You feel that way because, well, it could be negative thoughts, anxiousness, hurts, school stress, that boy that hurt you, insecurities, body image, the memory of a bad sports game, purposelessness, lack of love, thinking you need a boyfriend, loneliness, or all the above. Most of only care about being Instagram models, anyway.

Some thing, some person, some breakup, some family chaos, some experience has probably numbed you and made you feel hurt and defeated. As a result you stopped believing in a beautiful life for yourself. You will always see the beautiful life Sally has, or the gorgeous hair Molly has, but never your own.  You’ll edit and filter and post until you convince yourself it’s good enough and you’ll watch the likes flood in. I have been there and I spent so many days living like this. My only desire now is to redeem the time lost thinking those ways.

My days were spent comparing myself to other girls and wishing I had a man in my life to pick up the pieces. Put on a smile and never let any small circumstance defeat me was my theme song. Truth is, I was exhausted and totally unhappy.

God’s great power and mighty strength Has revealed the Truth that sets all this unhealthy expectation for womanhood free. Through scripture and Jesus we hear, know, see, and embrace the powerful Love that takes away our burdens and hurts.  Jesus longs for us to hear Him say, “You are free to dream again, I’ve covered the cost.”

Honey, sweetie, darling, my sister; the problem isn’t you, your body, your looks, or your failure… the problem is that you think these things are definitions of your worth.

I need you to begin –or renew– a beautiful, ongoing relationship with God. Being on an adventure with God will involve doubts, worries, and fears so bring them along. In fact, that’s what makes for a more fulfilling adventure and relationship! In His hands, in His words, in His spirit is healing love that will take away all the hurts that hurt you. It holds all the love you ever thought a man would give you. Do not ever think any boyfriend or man can do what God has already done. Mainly because most boys will spend their nights playing video games and your over here crying alone.

I write this to you because I need you to know you are beautiful even if you don’t feel it.

Listen to this: I laugh to myself when people tell me I look good in a picture because usually I reply with a comment like, “Ha, in that picture I felt like a bloated crampy mess!” And not saying that in a cry for attention, I realized some person, some child, some teen, some friend, some adult looks at any one of us and believes we are the most precious person to exist. So like please realize the negative thoughts, anxiety, bloated stomach pains, and messy hair can never tell us our inherent beauty is just “gone.” Objectively they ARE painful realities in their own ways, but they are not who we are.

I think, so often, we mistaken truth for what feels good, but the firm perfection and unchanging Truth of what God says about us is more solid than your emotions, insecurities, and moods which change every three hours (…every three minutes). Whereas God has yet to change at all.

When we pray and think of God we give Him permission to breathe into us His love, purpose, and strength. This is what makes us so beautiful. All insecurities run away in fear of His might. All unloved memories from old friends and boys fade at the realization that God is in awe of us. The secret isn’t to turn off the desire for love, the secret is to ask Him to love us several times a day.  We need Him to do this and you need to justify that this is more than OK.

If opening your heart to the one who loves you the most sounds terrifying then you’re in the right place. Everything up until you read this was probably so unloving that you’re a little paralyzed. An invitation to God’s love, peace, and purpose are not offered anywhere else in life. That’s precisely why we must turn to the only source: Him.

I need you to know, darling, that I write this because His love for you is the most radiant thing you could ever wear, choose, and live for. You won’t ever need to explain yourself when you are covered and protected under God’s strong arm. You will radiate a bold strength that you won’t need to explain to others. They will be so drawn to you that it won’t matter what you’ve settled for before His love.

How do we fill ourselves with God’s Love?

  1. Slowly read Scripture until something hits you.
  2. Let God look at You.
  3. Go to Mass, Confession, & Adoration.
  4. Tell Him what you’re afraid of.
  5. Speak about your loved ones.
  6. Pray for an enemy.
  7. Tell Him about your failures. Ask for help. Listen.
  8. Ask Him to show you the next step.
  9. Promise Him you trust Him. (Ask for the desire to trust Him)
  10. Receive the Eucharist as often as you can

Daily Changes:

Your relationship with God is the strength that touches your heart and changes you, but there are also things you can do in life to be able to see Him more clear. Sometimes we don’t accept God’s goodness because we train ourselves to accept the love we think we deserve. There are small ways to change this.

  1. Surround yourself with good friends.
  2. Don’t seek/wait for gratification from others (likes, posts, constant social media)
    instead,
  3. Receive compliments from others when they come
  4. Don’t respond to upsets by saying, “I hate my life.”
  5. Be mindful of what you watch, listen to, read, and hang around. Everything you put into your body is shaping you.
  6.  Workout; move your body, it is precious.
  7. Cry when you need to (please)
  8. Do not isolate yourself or remain unattached to your loved ones
  9. Dream about your future
  10. Don’t Hook-up meaninglessly

One of my favorite quotes is by a woman named Saint Theresa Benedicta of the Cross. She said, “The woman’s soul is a fashioned shelter in which other souls may unfold.” If you look deep into the truth about what your body expresses and does you will see that it is a creative force that can lead others to hope and even bring new life into the world. Women are the ones who inspire others. Women are the ones who motivate men to be mature (right?) Women are the ones whose entire presence can calm others. Until women take time to let God love their hearts she will never feel this strong.

Wake up sis!  It’s time for a life of passion, zeal, and love. A life Jesus showed us was capable of living. Jesus did it. He won freedom from hurts for us. We just need to let Him in our heart to feel, know, see, and embrace it. 

Walk with purpose, be radiant, be bold, be brave, be YOU. Live an unshaken strength that changes the world. As you walk down the hallway–wherever you are–hear the sound of your pump up theme song playing in the background. Because when you walk confidently with the Lord you can see and hear Him look down on you, nod with affirmation, and say; “that’s my girl.”

Proud of you, sis.

Xo,
Shannon

Pray this daily until you believe it in your heart.

I am a daughter of the Most High God.
I am a princess in my Father’s House.
I am made in the image and likeness of God.
Jesus is my beloved and I am His.
I am beautiful and precious in His eyes.
He has given me dignity, value, and worth.
I will place my hope in Him
and the power of His ability to resurrect the dead stuff in me.
I am greatly loved and greatly blessed.
The Holy Spirit has chosen to dwell in my heart.
The Spirit of God lives in me.
I have a blessed Mother who loves me with a mother’s heart.
I will walk in this Truth,
I claim this identity as my own today, tomorrow, and the rest of my life!
Amen. 

¹Psalm 45:14, ²Jeremiah 29:11, ³Zephaniah 3:17