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Monthly Archives: May 2015

Life is Like a Cup of Coffee

This may fit better with Wise Words Wednesday, but it is Fun Friday where anything can happen!

I sit here in a local coffee shop with the Oklahoma sky raining once again outside. I’m being productive today: making phone calls, scheduling, planning, and getting work done. Then I take a moment to peruse youtube for some motivation when I found this very fitting video.

Life is like a cup of coffee….

Please check it out before you read past this line.

I have recently graduated college, and I’m looking for the kind of life I want to live. There is pressure on getting a good job, there is pressure of making good money, and there is pressure to make an ideal life for myself.

However, I don’t want to forget how to live a good life and enjoy it. I don’t want to become self-focused, especially to the point that I forget those around me, I forget to enjoy the small moments, or that I forget the most important mission of my life: to love God and bring glory to Him.

I will enjoy the coffee despite the cup it is from.

Will you?

-Steph 🙂

P.S. I’d love to hear your thoughts and what you got from the video.


Impact of Music

Who doesn’t like music?

I honestly can’t think of a single person out there who dislikes music. Sure, they may not like singing or dancing but music all together? I don’t go to concerts. I’m not a concert type girl. Seriously, all I’ve seen is one Winter Jam and NSYNC in my whole life. However, I went to one two weekends ago and…wow. I give major credit to the artist, who came to entertain and did so incredibly. It is more than that though. It is more than the artist, the concert. It is even more than how the songs affect me.

imagesAs I stood amongst the crowd, I thought about the moment. Here we are, a sea of strangers, sharing this moment together, these emotions together. A song can affect each person differently–mean something different to each and every one of us–and here we are feeling it, experiencing it, enjoying it together in that moment.

And that moment, knowing someone else is be moved by this song like I am, makes me feel more connected. Connected to the music, connected to other people, connected to life.

I had the simagesame pull from music earlier that day but in a different situation. I have not been a part of a worship team in long while. No reason in particular; just not the opportunity or drive for it. Well that opportunity came a knocking when the interns took over the worship for youth group that week. I had no idea what effect it would have on me.

I know this post may come across as cheesy, but I am honest. Up on stage singing with some phenomenal musicians for the glory of my heavenly father, I felt unbelievable. I felt like I was a solid part of that team. I felt like I was closer to God in those moments. I felt solid in who I am.

“I think music in itself is healing. It’s an explosive expression of humanity. It’s something we are all touched by. No matter what culture we’re from, everyone loves music.” –Billy Joe

Music makes an impact.images

Whether it how the lyrics in the song match your emotions, how the beat of the music makes you feel, or how you feel in a moment on stage or in the crowd…

Music moves us, changes us, connects us.

-Steph 🙂

P.S. I’d love to hear your thoughts on music and how it has impacted you!

Broken Vessels

IMG_3349For Wise Words Wednesday, I am glad to introduce my first guest blogger, Brandi Schneider.

Brandi is an incredible person whom I have known for more than ten years now. I know that I can always look to her for an excellent conversation, advice, or real talk. Even if her words rub someone the wrong way, she is always blunt and honest in a way that comes from a truly caring heart.

She works for a nonprofit organization called “Project Semicolon”, and she is a part of the Paradigm Shift and 20 Camp teams. I appreciate Brandi for all that she does, for what a great friend she is, and for her openness in all her blog posts. I hope you enjoy these wise words from her:

We are broken people. We live in a broken world with other broken people and we have a nasty habit of breaking others. Broken things need to be fixed. But not on our own. No no. Our habit for breaking others should be indicator enough that we aren’t in the business of repairs.

But I want so desperately to be in the business of repairs. I try to be. Sometimes I succeed. Oftentimes I fail.

I wonder what, if any, good can come from my brokenness. So much so that I convince myself that nothing good can come from it. So in the frenzy of trying to fix myself, I break others along the way. I don’t mean to. Sometimes I’m not even aware of it.

But as I prepare to lead worship tonight, the lyrics begin to wash over me. “Take this heart Lord, I’ll be your vessel. The world to see your life in me.”

This song is about brokenness. And the grace that is found in and through it.

My brokenness is beautiful to Him.
Your brokenness. It’s beautiful.

We can’t fix our brokenness. And I’m not sure that should be our goal anymore.

The more and more I recall the broken moments of my life, the more I realize that there was such beauty found within them. Like a diamond waiting in the rough. The brokenness created something so beautiful.

Let Him take your brokenness. Let Him refine it, press it, then make it beautiful.

Stop trying to repair something that the Father desires to mold into something beautiful. Stop breaking people along the way. And stop trying to fix them before they’ve found their beauty.

The sorrow may last for the night, but joy comes in the morning.

I pray that you have found some kind of hope intertwined through my words. I hope you close this feeling refreshed and encouraged.

I would love to connect with you, so feel free to check me out over at or at

Until next time,

Stories of a Solo Traveler

This last weekend I got to go on an adveimage(2)nture all on my own. Now, I’ve traveled on my own before–really only road trips, but on a plane to Chicago, being all on my own became distinctly real.

Like every trip I’veimage(3) been on, I started instagramming my adventure. That is when I came up with the hashtag: #solotraveler. My mind was racing; this could be really fun! Tips and stories of traveling solo. I don’t do it often; in fact, I very much prefer the company of others being the extravert that I am. Yet, there is something about being on one’s own that can be empowering with the sense of independence and adventure.

Anyways, here are my first few tips based on my solo trip to Chicago:

  • Don’t be afraid to travel solo, just be wise about it. Preplan, be confident, and avoid dangerous situations. For example, I got to my hotel right before sunset to avoid being on my own walking the streets of Chicago at night.
  • Headphones are always handy-plane rides, bus rides, talking on the phone while looking at google maps, and fitting in (often times in big cities, such as New York City and Chicago, locals alone have headphones in.
  • Never forget gum when flying. My ears have suffered :/
  • Never be afraid to chat with your seat buddy on a plane because you could always make a new friend. If it doesn’t go well, resort to headphones.
  • Research great apps for your trip. They can save you money, save you time, and overall make your trip smoother. For example, the app “citymapper” made traveling around Chicago such a breeze to the point that I got asked for directions.
  • Lighten the luggage is smart. I was only on a two day and one night trip, so I managed to get all my stuff and the workshop in one backpack. It helped when I couldn’t check into my hotel for hours after landing in Chicago, and gave me the chance to I explore the city with just my backpack.
  • Invest in a good backpack. It is helpful to only be responsible for a backpack, so you might as well get one that lasts for a long time. Also, a backpack can also help one fit in. I got asked for directions by someone because I looked like a local university student. Made my day 🙂
  • Be wise on what you pack. The minimum if you can. I try to stick to carry on only when flying, and for a woman, that is hard. An excellent tip I’ve received is stick to one color scheme. I focus on a neutral–black or brown–and work around that (expect a packing post eventually 😉 )

That’s all for now. Do you have any traveling tips or stories???

-Steph 🙂