Pursuing Your Passions in a World of Judgment.

In today’s world, people are able to pursue passions of all types. And today’s world makes it even easier to pursue most passions. But how do you pursue your passions? Its simple, but it’s also terrifyingly hard. 

The first step to pursuing your passion is discovering your passion. You have to have something in order to pursue it. When I thought of passions, I would always think of my hobbies. And let me tell you something, hobbies are way different than passions. 

Hobbies are things that you enjoy doing in your free time. They can range from painting to singing or even to acting. Think of all your hobbies, now how many of these are you willing to one, dedicated an hour a day on and two, invest financially into.

When I say invest financially, I’m not talking about buying canvases and paint. I’m talking about finding lessons and investing in resources that can help you better yourself. For me, this was writing. It might take you a few tries to find your passion, but once you have it you’ll know what it is. Praying to find your passion can also provide comfort.

Okay, now that you’ve identified your passion, you need to chase it. You need to find what you’re good at and what you’re bad at. Spend lots of time and evaluate yourself. If your planning on pursuing it as a career, you should almost treat it as a part time job. You are your boss, and as your boss you need to figure out what your employee needs and what they provide to your team. 

Unfortunately, we must now look at the downside of pursuing your passion. You’ve managed to chase it, you just barely have a hold of it so now you must face it. Not everyone is going to support, like or love your passion. You’re going to have people who say you can’t do it and sometimes, you’ll be that person. 

Let’s take art for an example. You don’t have to wait until college to get better at your passion. If you practice your art at least an hour everyday, you’re going to continue to build and get better. You’ll be WAY ahead of the game by the time you get to college. But everyday for a whole hour?

That’s going to seem like a lot at first, but if you continue and make it a routine that hour will go by in no time. There will be times when this might take time away from your phone or peers so people might get upset. They might even get jealous that you’re getting better at this passion, but don’t let that stop you.

I’ve learned the more people that put you down, the easier it is for you to doubt yourself. Self doubt will be a common visitor in the beginning. But it’s only a visitor, not a permanent resident. When self doubt comes to visit you, don’t break your routine. When you work on your passion on the days you don’t want to, that’s how you know it’s a passion.

 Once you’ve faced your passion, you need to tackle it. You need to continue to grow. Find opportunities to showcase your passions. Maybe even find competitions, scholarships or way to volunteer your talents and passion. 

Pursuing your passion isn’t easy, but it is worth it. Don’t go into it with this unreal mindset thinking it’ll be fun 24/7 and that if you don’t feel like doing it everyday then it’s not a passion. I believe in you, and so do so many others. Don’t let the handful of people who put you down stop you! You are unique, and God made you to pursue your passion.

When God Uses Others To Be An Unexpected Light

Hello and welcome back! I’m so excited for today’s post! I didn’t post as much as I would have liked too last week, so I’m going to share where I was. And since I’m writing this on a Wednesday, I’m also going to throw in a “Writing Prompt Wednesday.”

So last friday I had the chance to go with my philanthropy group to our local Night To Shine. Night To Shine is an event that christain athlete Tim Tebow created. One day a year, churches from all over the world host their own dance for special needs kids and adults. Its a HUGE event and it was an AMAZING thing to be a part of!

So our group had gone last year, and I don’t think I really got into it as much, I ended up in the bingo room just kind of passing time. But this year I was able to be a buddy. If you are a buddy, your assigned one special needs guest for the night. You eat with them and then continue to follow them and interact with them throughout the night. And my buddy was awesome!

We talked during dinner, but right after we ate instead of going anywhere he decided he wanted to stay in the dining room and find others to socialize with. It was an eye opening experience to just watch the way he interacted with others. When he introduced me to his friends he would introduce me by saying, “Yes, this is my date and she’s beautiful! Do you know her?”

Now the first thing my buddy wanted to do was go on the limo ride. While waiting in line to get on the limo, he looked to me and said, “There are ladiesss.” Of course I thought he meant on the limo, but next thing I know he has a group of 5 cheerleaders around him and is taking a group photo with them. He was quite the ladies man. 

Then on the limo he decided to ask the other people if he could see pictures of their “handsome other half.” We had ladies pulling up pictures of their families left and right and my buddy sat there complimenting everyone of them. Ofcourse, right after he asked me the same question. My answer was no, but he said “Okay, do you want a boyfriend?” I told him we could hangout tonight and his response was “My girlfriend wouldn’t like that…… HAHA! Got ya!”

All through the night he was a party animal on the dance floor. He was twirling and even dipping some of “the ladiesss.” It was amazing to see what God was doing with his life and how he was just pure happy. We even took a picture together and when I asked him how I should pose, he said, “Don’t pose, just rock it!” 

The only time I saw him even slightly sad was when I told him I had to leave. We were checking out and he proceeded to introduce me to his mom! She thanked me, but I felt like I should have been thanking her. I am so thankful I was able to spend that time with my buddy and how eye opening the experience was. So thank you God!

Weekly Challenge: Reach out to someone who sits alone or just doesn’t feel like they fit in and be a light to them!

Writing Prompt Wednesday:

I feel God’s Presence most when……

I feel God’s presence most when writing and when I’m going through tough times. I always find ways to praise God in my writing. He has a way of pointing things out to me through words. I also feel his comfort when going through tough times and his guidance as well.  

This week I was eager for God to…….

This week I was eager for God to introduce me to some like minded individuals at school. Won’t lie, this week came through and power kicked me all the way to China and then sent me back with another kick. I am eager to just find a group of people I can be around almost everyday and just fit in. But I also know God is doing what’s best for me, so I just have to wait and learn from the experiences he provides to me.  

Feel free to answer these in the comment section below!

Until next time! 🙂

Stop Wearing Satan’s Custom Masks.

Okay, so that header might have been a little harsh. But let me explain.

Masks. We all own masks. They’re never endless, interchangeable, and convenient. They help us hide our insecurities and emotions. They’re meant to make us look better, and sometimes even worse. And by now you’ve probably realized, I’m not talking about the masks you get at the party store. 

The masks I’m referring to are the masks of emotions, personalities, traits. And trust me, they’ll cost you much more than a mask from the halloween store. These masks are never sorted, they’re thrown in a room and shuffled around in a never ending pile. 

Some people have more masks than others. Some people only need one mask to completely cover them. Others wear different masks on different days to mask different things. Everyone’s masks mask something completely different. But today, I’m here to be completely transparent. In this post, I’ll tear off every one of my masks and dissect it very carefully. 

This is going to get pretty deep, but please stay until the end, there is a lesson in all of this.

When I wear my mask, I’m portrayed as this very academically talented student. I make others think I’m in the top 20 of my class and that I spend every moment of my time studying and striving. But when I look at my Spanish test and place it in my binder with complete confidence, I’m trying to hide the fact that I completely bombed that test. 

When I wear my mask, I’m a great friend. I’m always there when others need me and I try to be supportive. Now this mask doesn’t fool everyone, me and my friends have our issues. Some of them are bigger than just petty fights. But if I’m honest, I really could be a better friend. We push each other because we care, but we don’t know when to drop it. 

When I wear my mask, I’m shy and quiet. Some of you may think, “ You? Shy and quiet?”  Well, yes. Until you know me and I can put this mask down, I am very shy and quiet. Half my teachers always kid about how I could talk if I wanted too. And sometimes their jaws drop when they find out I’m in speech and debate.

When I wear a mask, I am working hard in my spiritual life to grow. And wow, the truth really does sting. Sometimes, I’m overwhelmed, anxiety takes over and I don’t get out of my comfort zone. I read my bible, do devotions, but when it comes to taking action I’m not the strongest by any means. 

But when I take my mask off? 

When I remove my masks I am an average student, in the top 50 of my class. I am still in honors english classes, but that’s my only strong point really. Math, spanish, and some science I always seem to be struggling with. And that’s okay with me, as long as I try my hardest. But sometimes, it’s so much easier if others think you’re doing better than you really are. 

When I remove my mask, I’m an okay friend. I know I could do better, we all do. I’m there when it matters and they always have someone to come too. But I pick and poke, I’m not afraid to admit it. But you know what, I’ve acknowledged that and I am working on that. I hope my friends can work on it with me.

When I remove my mask, I’m a total theater nerd. Yes, others know I do theater and yeah, I’ve gotten some pretty good parts. But what people don’t know is I LOVE listening to broadway music, looking at musicals online and watching how all the costumes for popular shows are out together. 

When I take my mask off, I am proud to say I am overly involved in my community. I tend to mask this cause I almost feel like I’m bragging when I say it. Not a lot of people see my involvement in my community, but you know what? I’m proud of it, and here I am being transparent about it. And yes, I almost deleted this part 4 times cause I was scared of “bragging.”

When I take my mask off, I’m really a social butterfly. I’m as outgoing as I want to be, and I can go pretty far. I’m an extrovert who tends to sink into introvert ways. 

When I take my mask off,  I am so deep into the word of God. I love dissecting it and looking at the words. But actions are not my strength and I know it! I own it, and I work on it. I am going to get out of my comfort zone! I am praying for the opportunities to do so, because God provides!

My mask makes me look somewhat put together, but what’s behind that mask? A work in progress, a perfectly imperfect work in progress. You know, I was very transparent. And wow, some people know a lot more about me now. 

But you know what God loves? He loves you. He doesn’t like these masks. The masks are a creation of satan. It’s another way to bury you in Satan’s lies and rumors. Live out of your comfort zone! Take your mask off!

Now, I’m not saying it’s as easy as waking up tommorows and saying, “No more masks and hiding emotions and traits.” It might take some time to ease into it. But as christain author Brett Harris says, “Start with one dish… and another… and another until your on a roll.” You could replace the dishes with any word you’d want and it still be true, but today we’re going to replace the dishes with masks. So let’s work, one mask at a time.

This week’s challenge: Work on taking your masks off and stepping out of your comfort zone. Be who God created you to be, and express it not as much as you’re comfortable, with but even more than you’re comfortable with! If you’re scared about judgment, check out my last post “Serving God At School ” where I talk about the judgment teen christains are faced with and how to get past it. 

Serving God At School

High school is a very intimidating place for every teenager. Kids fear being bullied, wearing the right clothes, being judged, failing classes. But those of us who have a strong faith have a guide through it all. We have the power of prayer to guide us through. But often today, opening up and showing your faith can lead to even more judgment. 

Let me back up real quick and ask you a question. How often do you see other teens serving in your high schools? Personally, I’ve seen 3 ways of service at my school. 3 might be a small number, but I’m happy just to see any service. We have a group putting up bible verse sticky notes from time to time, we have a student church group that participates in activities, and finally we have a yearly “Prayer at the Pole.”

Prayer at the Pole is one of the small ways church is brought to the schools. I went to this event for the first time last year to sing with the choir and I did not regret it. You see all these kids who you know had a faith, but then you see their friends standing beside them. The friends that talk down on God and don’t have that relationship. And even though they might only be there because of their friends, they still listen to a short sermon and pray with their fellow students. 

Now you see how others are serving in you school, but how are you personally serving? This question opened my eyes and quite frankly, made me feel kind of bad. I mean, I like to think I’m one to speak God into others and show my faith. But when it comes down to it, I often stay in my comfort zone due to the fear of judgment and being looked at as weird. 

I still have served in some ways. When my friends bring up controversial topics, I can often find a God side of the argument and speak my thoughts on it. I’ve carried my bible to school when I feel I need to get out of my comfort zone and push myself. I wrote a letter to each of my teachers to make them feel appreciated. Even just setting a kind example can create an opportunity to express your faith. 

Other ways you can serve are praying over your lunch and putting around sticky notes of encouragement. These are easy things that don’t take much time. Don’t get involved with un-godly things, it may seem cool and like no one will care at the time but God is always watching. Praying over your teachers and showing your friends the forgiveness that God often gives us can open up so many doors. 

Dealing with judgement and pressure is never easy. But we can push through because we know that God is watching over us even in the hard times. One day, you’ll take your experiences and learn to grow from them. You’d be surprised by what you learn form expressing your faith. 

If you don’t express your faith at school, start today! Don’t live under the pressure of others. Society’s pressure and views seem really important in the moment, but it won’t matter in the end. But you now what will? How you lived for God and portrayed his name. 

Weekly Challenge: Start praying over your school lunch! I’ll do these challenges with you and report back in the next post!

Tuesdays post topic: Hiding Behind A Mask

First Introduction!

Hello and welcome to my blog! I’m finally committing to a goal of mine and I am so excited to not only share my words but practice consistency through this platform. I have so many post ideas running around in my head, but I figured I should probably start out by introducing myself. 

Now let me make this clear, this is not about me personally. I give all the glory to God. But when I read blogs, I would like to know the person writing them and what God has done in their life.

So hi! I’m Courtney, but I go by both Courtie and my alias Writer With A Cause. I am a 16 year old girl whos growing in faith. I have 2 amazing parents,1 overly techy brother, few friends my age and 2 adorable cats!

God has given me many gifts such as writing, speech and debate skills, an amazing theater family and a strong philanthropic mindset. I work a part time highschool job and consider writing to be my 2nd part time job. I may not make a profit but it’s definitely work, just not the kind that makes you wish the clock was going faster. 

That’s all I have for today, I just wanted to give you guys a bit of an introduction. Who knows what will come of this blog, but as long as 1 person sees it and connects to it, it’s a success. These posts will become longer and more meaningful as I begin to post. You can expect posts Tuesdays at 5 and Saturdays at 4. 

See you soon!

Writer With A Cause.