Meet Dylan

Dylan DavidsonHey Everyone! I’m Dylan, and I am the newest member of the creative writing team for the Whatever Girls Ministry. I’m so excited to be writing to you all and I hope I can give you young ladies some insight into the mind of a Godly young man. I’ll be talking about things like: what a young man looks for in a Godly young woman and how guys view dating and relationships. I’ll use some of my personal experiences as an example, but before we get into all of that, I want to take this time to share with you my life story and the impact The Lord has had on my life.

My story started 21 years ago. I was born into a Christian family who all believed in The Lord. I’m the oldest of three; I have a younger brother and sister. On a side note, we were all homeshcooled. Some of my hobbies include playing the drums, card games, mixed-martial arts and pretty much anything that involves being outside. I was born and raised in Spokane and I’ve never gone too far from where I call home. I recently got married this last June, to my lovely bride, and my words cannot express how blessed I am to have her by my side. You will hear about her a lot and get to know her.

I grew up in the church; I have always known who God was and how much He loved me, but it wasnt until I was about 18 that I truly realized and understood who God was and how much I desperately needed Him. Coming to this realization was not an easy journey and I struggled with my faith right when I got out of high school. I struggled with pride, arrogance and self-entitlement. I reached a place of complete brokenness, and that was when God grabbed me and pulled me back up. I’ve never experienced grace the way I experienced it at that point in my life. Since then, I’ve striven to live my life in a way that glorifies The Lord in everything that I do. I’m human and I fall short and mess up on a daily basis, but that is the incredible thing about God’s love and grace, He wil give you a second chance, and a third chance, and a fourth chance. His love is unconditional!

That’s my story. It’s not too exciting and there’s nothing very flashy about it. It is a testimony about someone who thought he had it all figured out and thought he could do it all on his own, and then God used all of that against him to bring him out of his own selfish mindset. Because I went through a time where I was in a very selfish, prideful mindset, I have a huge passion for young people. I have a passion to share my story and help students, ladies and gentlemen alike, to stay close to The Lord and always lean on Him for everything. Proverbs 3:5 says to “trust in The Lord with all your heart, and do not lean on your own understanding.” That’s a verse that I try to live by every day and it’s a verse that I encourage others to live by.

That’s all I have for now; I hope you enjoyed my story. I’m very excited to begin this journey with all of you! Until next time, may the force be with you!

Dylan

 

Notes to Teenage Me (Part 4)

Notes-to-Teenage-Me-Image-3

Notes to Teenage Me (Part 1)

Notes to Teenage Me (Part 2)

Notes to Teenage Me (Part 3)

 

February 22

Dear Diary,

When I have his full attention, I glow. When he ignores me, I sit and wait until he does.

I feel so wimpy. So insecure.  So dependent.

Why can’t I have some of the social fascination Lisa has? I don’t tease. I don’t act mad. I don’t nag. I’m b-o-r-i-n-g.

What can I do to be more entertaining? To hold his interest?

C

To Teenage Me,

How I would love to convince you that he’s not worth your worries. Sure, he’s a nice boy. But that just it: he’s a boy. b-o-y. Not G-o-d. Not someone who deserves to determine how you feel about yourself.

You don’t need to be “more” entertaining. Or “more” anything. Don’t worry about all those things you “don’t” do. Focus one what you do do that makes you you!

And when the time is right, God will bring you a m-a-n who will make you forget every b-o-y you’ve ever wasted tears on.

But even he will not be the determiner of your worth. That role is God’s alone. And He says you’re worth saving and rejoicing over!

Zephaniah 3:17

Love,

Your Future Self

P.S. If you’ve not heard the song “Worth More Than Gold” it’s worth your time!

 

May 17

Dear Diary,

You remember that dress I loved and wanted to keep so bad, but I couldn’t afford it so I returned it?

MOTHER. BOUGHT. IT. FOR. ME!!!!!!!!!!

I know it’s silly.

But it means the world today.

C

To Teenage Me,

How totally marvy!!!  (Ooops…my 80s are showing!)

Seriously, what a lovely surprise.

Hard as it may be, don’t let this one surprise trigger secret expectations for more. Enjoy it for what it is: a gift of love.

And in a few years, when Mother refuses to help you pick The Dress, please think back to this day.

Remember that people give love as best they can. Sometimes they can; sometimes they can’t. Only God gives–and loves–without fail.

James 1:17

Love,

Your Future Self

 

September 2

Dear Diary,

I had an appointment with Dr. M today. My parents reported strange eating habits and quick escape from the dinner table to the bathroom. They suspect bulimia.

Dr. M recommended counseling, but I don’t want to hash through a bunch of pain and tears!

Ugh.

C

To Teenage Me,

Oh girlie, none of us want to hash through pain and tears! It’s so tempting to believe that everyone else needs counseling, but “not me.” That it may help others, but “not me.”

Yes. You.

You’re caught in a destructive cycle of trying to meet your needs through food. You need help. Now.

Yes. You.

The sooner you face this truth and turn to the Truth, the sooner you will be free.

John 8:32

Love,

Your Future Self

 

 Your Turn!

  • What would you like to say to my “Teenage Me”?
  • What would you say to your “Teenage Me”?
  • Post a diary excerpt that shares what’s on your teenage heart!

Martha, Martha……Ohhhh Martha

By Kim Chaffin

I tend to be an over-planner. That over-planning side of me has worked to my advantage when it has come to organizing a party. However, our greatest gift can be our biggest downfall.  I can get so wrapped up in every detail, that I miss enjoying the event, and I actually take offense if someone is not putting in as much effort as I am.  That is something I really need to work on.

This last June my daughter graduated and I could put my party planning skills to work.  We planned a joint party with some of our best friends at their house. My sweet friend knew I loved this kind of thing, and so let me run with it.

My husband is wise, and he said to me as the party drew near, “You have yourself so wrapped up in this, that you are not giving anyone else anything to do, and I don’t want you getting so caught up in this that you miss enjoying the party, or get mad that we are not helping.” What he said made sense.

The night of the party we were way ahead of the game. Everything had fallen into place: the weather was perfect and the yard was spectacular.  Krista and I had a plan in place as to who was going to do what during the party.  That night we were given an unexpected gift.  Krista’s sister and a friend of ours wanted to see Krista and I enjoy the party, so they planned on taking care of everything that night.  Okay, I have to admit I almost hyperventilated as I let go of the control.

Recently, I was reading the story of Mary and Martha and I saw I was a Martha. I can be so worried about all the details, that I miss the amazing party or fellowship that is going on right in front of me.  The name Martha means Lady of the house, and I have that down to a fault. Martha branded

Luke 10:38-42 (NIV) As Jesus and his disciples were on their way, he came to a village where a woman named Martha opened her home to him.  She had a sister called Mary, who sat at the Lord’s feet listening to what he said.  But Martha was distracted by all the preparations that had to be made. She came to him and asked, “Lord, don’t you care that my sister has left me to do the work by myself? Tell her to help me!” “Martha, Martha,” the Lord answered, “you are worried and upset about many things, but few things are needed—or indeed only one. Mary has chosen what is better, and it will not be taken away from her.”

Krista is a Mary, and Mary means wise woman or lady.  Krista knows there is work to be done to prepare for the guests, but she has always had a good balance of knowing that to be face to face with her guests, enjoying their presence, is more important.

As moms, it is so easy to get caught up in the Martha role that we miss out on the most important things.  Don’t forget to take time with your kids, doing nothing but spending time with them.  Don’t be worried about the fingerprints on the windows, someday they will be gone. Better yet, make fingerprints on the windows with them as you watch the snow with your kids.

As moms, we have the greatest ministry, our children.  When we show our children we have a healthy balance in our time, they will learn from that.  If they see the dishes sitting in the sink while we sit with our bible open because we are drawing into Jesus, we are showing them the importance of fellowship with the Christ.  Something Mary understood.   Yes we do need to get the jobs around the house done but we can’t forget to have a healthy balance.  Our children watch and learn from us in all we do.  When they see us just sit at the foot of Jesus in prayer and study, we are making a lasting impression on them.

I have to say I had the most amazing time at the party when I stepped away from the control and just relaxed.  Dancing with my mom and my daughter was so much fun; I had a great time in fellowship with our guests.  It was a perfect night and I could have missed out.  I am learning to find a healthy balance of being both a Mary and a Martha.  What about you?  Are you a Mary or a Martha?

Kim

 

Do You Hear Him?

By Lynn Cowell

Do You Hear Him?

With a very busy day ahead of me, a dark cloud of stress hung overhead. Having written my “to-do” list, I asked the Holy Spirit to help me hear His timeline so I could get it all done!

Tackling number one, I felt a nudge on my heart, “Start with worshipping Me.” I don’t really have time for that, Lord! But peace came as I made a decision to start the day right.

Setting my list aside, I turned on worship music in my living room. As I listened to scriptures woven throughout the lyrics, I saw again how His Word was exactly what I needed to start my day.

This year, I am purposing to listen. Dictionary.com defines listen as: to give attention with the ear; attend closely for the purpose of hearing.

To listen, I have to be focused on hearing, purposefully and selectively, because what I hear has the power to change to me.

Romans 10:17 says, “So faith comes from hearing, and hearing through the word of Christ.” (ESV)

When I hear God’s Word, set to music or taught, my faith grows. I need, then, to put myself in a place where I can hear (not just read silently) God’s Word. I’ve begun to look for new ways to hear Scripture.

One of those ways is reading the Bible out loud. This has a few great benefits. I stay awake (a serious consideration when it’s early in the morning or late at night!). Side note: the other day my daughter asked me if I shouldn’t start praying with my eyes oopen because I tend to fall asleep…even on my knees!) When reading God’s word outloud, anyone who hears me also gets to hear God’s Word! And my faith is built.

When little children first learn how to read, what does their teacher make them do? Read out loud. Why? Hearing builds comprehension; it helps us understand the material better.

The same is true when it comes to reading God’s Word. “Faith comes by hearing.” Reading out loud helps build our comprehension of what Scripture is telling us, as well as our faith. This is good for us and our children!

We can read the Bible out loud to children or better yet, have them read to us! Even if just for a small pocket of time: on the way to school, after dinner, before bed, or coming home from sports practice.

Keep a Bible in the car, by your kitchen table, or near the TV. I once heard a great author say he grew up in a home with books everywhere. In every room, on every table, there was a book. It became a natural thing to just pick them up and see what each page held! Let’s do the same with God’s Word and make it easily accessible.

Hearing God’s Word is important. Let’s start listening today by turning on some praise music, reading Scripture out loud and listening to sermons. Our faith will begin building quickly!

Pray this prayer for help today: Lord, I need to build my faith for all that You have given me in this life. Holy Spirit, whisper to me, showing me pockets of time when I can hear Your Word for myself and for my children too. Amen

Lynn Cowell
Do you need a resource to help a teen girl in your life build her faith through hearing God’s Word? Lynn Cowell’s new book Devotions for a Revolutionary Year – 365 Days of Jesus’ Radical Love for You can help you do just that! Short devotionals, only 2-3 minutes each, can go a long way in helping her learn God’s truth.

Sign up for Lynn’s FREE “7-day Faith Builder” – a week’s worth of free devotions to share with your daughter, or another girl you know, to help build her faith and confidence.

 

Hope for those who are boy-crazy

By Tracy Steel

I spent the majority of my teens and 20s swooning over countless young men. I was boy-crazy.

Perhaps a certain boy is on your mind 24/7. Maybe you believe that having a boyfriend will make you 100% content and satisfied. If so, I pray you’ll consider reading Paula Hendricks new book, Confessions of a boy-crazy girl: On Her Journey From Neediness To Freedom. What follows is a portion of my story and review of the book.

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By the time I finished reading the fourth paragraph (not the fourth chapter mind you, but literally the fourth paragraph) of this book, I was hooked.

On page 18, Paula confesses:

“… I wanted off my merry-go-round ride that never stopped its perpetual spinning. It went something like this:

  1. Spot a cute boy (we’ll call him Boy A).
  2. Dream about Boy A.
  3. Do whatever it takes to make Boy A notice me.
  4. Even though Boy A doesn’t pursue me, hang onto my dream of Boy A…
  5. Mend my broken heart by hating Boy A and finding another cute boy (Boy B).
  6. Replace Boy A with Boy B.
  7. Dream about Boy B.
  8. Make sure Boy B notices me.
  9. Hang on to my dream of Boy B until he…
  10. Move on to another cute boy—Boy C.

The truth is, I went through an entire alphabet—and more—of boys over the years.”

I so get this.

My list of dream hunks spanned the entire English alphabet, as well as the alphabet of several foreign languages. By the time I entered my late 20s, I wanted to be married like everyone around me. I found myself on this same merry-go-round of thinking and feeling. I was incredibly unhappy, and God’s presence seemed to elude me no matter how hard I prayed or no matter how hard I tried not to “like” another boy.

Is there hope for those that day dream about a boy after boy? Is there hope for those who need to have a boyfriend ALL the time (and who will do anything to get one?)

Absolutely.

Confessions of a boy-crazy girl, is full of wisdom and encouragement for young girls who want to break the habit of moving through an alphabetical list of love interests, and for those wanting freedom from heartache and hopelessness. I love how this book combines snippets of Paula’s personal journal entries with solid Biblical teaching. Paula addresses issues such as temptation, beauty, jealousy, and the danger of forcing a “happy ending” in an honest, wise, and sometimes, humorous manner.

Teen girl, if you feel rejected or guilty for having boys constantly on your brain, or fear spending the rest of your life alone, you are more normal than you think. You are NOT beyond the saving and redeeming work of God in your heart either. I am proof of this.

Overtime, my need for male attention decreased as my desire for God’s affection increased.  When God decided it was time, He brought my husband into the picture. Was I perfect in every way when I met Chad?

No way.

Yet, God helped me find deeper security and contentment in His love for me so I could freely love the husband He has given to me.

The merry-go-round in my mind has ceased…

How did Paula’s journey from “neediness to freedom” end? Did God finally bring Mr. Right into her life? You will have to read the book to find out! I believe the final sentences of this book will truly inspire your heart- especially if it is occupied with Boy “C” or “Q” or “Z” right now.

Enter to win a copy of Confessions of a boy-crazy girl

The author has graciously donated an autographed copy of this book- thank you Paula! We would like to give it away to one of you. Simply comment below. We will us Random Number Generator to pick and announce the winner on February 23, 2014.

The Winner of an autographed copy of Confessions of a boy-crazy girl is Jo Cook Millett!

Jo look for an email from Whatever Girls to claim your prize.

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