5 Bloggers Who Will Inspire You

inspireTo inspire another is a beautiful thing.

And these five bloggers consistently bring it. Obviously they’re not alone when it comes to inspiring so watch for more bloggers to be highlighted here in the future.

But today, I’m delighted to introduce you to the first five bloggers brimming with inspiration:

 

 

 

 

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Beth Saadati // Bittersweet: Because Sweet Still Follows Bitter…Even in Loss. This is a blog no mother ever wants to create. It’s vulnerable. It’s heart-wrenching, and yet quietly inspiring. You see, it’s a story focused on the aftermath of Beth’s 14 year old daughter, Jenna, who committed suicide three years ago. She speaks of loss, her words as heavy as her heart. But Beth’s story, above all, radiates great Light and insight for parents and teens.

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Merissa // Little House Living – I admit she had me at the vintage Mason jar on her blog header. Frugal living tips, garden tours, and recipes from scratch soon followed and I was hooked. I hope to begin embracing my own simple kind of rhythm as we move forward in our plans to trek across town to the foothills.

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Helene // Helene-In-Between – When Bloglovin’ pops up in my inbox, I’m scanning the list for this site. Boundless blogging tips for writers, and non-bloggers are sure to enjoy her travel posts. Beautiful pictures, timely tips, and fun giveaways will inspire you for days to come. {You’ll definitely want to follow her on Pinterest.}

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Kenzie // Hello Neverland – Everything about Kenzie’s site inspires — the white space, the clean lines, the content. It’s all there and more. Some of the subjects covered on this site: Faith, Writing/Journaling, Intentional Living, Clean Living, Creativity, etc. Her recent book review on More: Find Your Personal Calling and Live Life to the Fullest Measure by Todd Wilson is excellent.

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Joshua Becker // Becoming Minimalist – “Let’s be known for the lives we live. Not the things we buy.’ His words on this site, as well as his books, are simple, to the point, and a tad convicting. Okay, who am I kidding? For people like me, it’s more than a tad, but I need to receive it in bits so it’s not overwhelming. His latest book, The More of Less: Finding the Life You Want Under Everything You Own has arrived in my mailbox. Now to find it under all my half-packed boxes. 🙂

 

 

Have you visited any of the sites above? Do you have a favorite blogger who inspires you? I’d love to hear more! Who knows? They may end up on the next blog featuring inspiring bloggers. Please share in the comment section.

 

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3 Ways to Fill A Mug with Encouragement

A Cup of Encouragement

The sooner we stop believing the lie that we must offer some grand gesture to make a difference, the sooner more souls will find rest⎯the kind of rest a good, good Father desires for His children.

Maybe you remember the above quote from last week’s post? There, I shared a simple way to put our desire to encourage into action. If you didn’t catch last week’s post, you may want to read it here before reading today’s.

Okay, now let’s get started! There are obviously a multitude of creative ways to fill a mug for another but let’s begin with three. (Watch for more in July!)

 

3 Ways to Fill A Mug With Encouragement and A Prayer

 

Be still and know that I am God __ Psalm 46_10Do you know a frazzled mom (school is out, after all!), or a neighbor going through a difficult time? Or maybe a friend or co-worker seeking God for particular answers? Once you’ve purchased a mug, enclose a note, along with 4-5 individually wrapped tea bags (read the tea box carefully – if it says “sachets” the tea is not individually wrapped.) The note can be from you, encouraging the recipient to take a few moments to sip and savor the tea during their time with God, including the verse above. Or, the note could read something like this: “I look forward to My time with you. Love, Jesus” Psalm 46:10.

BlogCreatedMugMaybe you know someone struggling to find their way creatively, albeit cooking something new for the family, a project at work that refuses to budge, or an artist/writer wrestling the proverbial block to the ground. A mug is the perfect fit for a set of colorful pencils.Try finding a mug taller than it is wide so the pencils will have more support. Take the pencils out of the box and put them sharpened end up. On the enclosed note, one idea might be to write something like: “God created you to be creative. Like Father, like Daughter/Son.” Of course, nothing says you can’t attach an adult coloring book with the mug but the point here is to keep it simple. The colored pencils and your note of encouragement is sure to bring a smile to his/her face.

BlogLightofWorldmugJust in my circle of friends, three have received a cancer diagnosis this past year. In the past six months, two friends have lost an adult child. As a person who struggles with depression I know how tightly the darkness can cling, wanting to swallow me whole at times. Maybe you, or someone you know, struggles as well. Whatever form darkness takes, the Father stands ready to envelope us in the light of His love, mercy, and grace. Oh, what a glorious light! There are no shadows, no shifting lights of “what if’s” in His light — only the purest form of love. One that would choose a temporal but excruciating cross so that we might not have to endure an eternal one. In this mug, place an unscented candle, perhaps wrapped in tissue paper, inside the mug. {Unscented because fragrance isn’t a friend to everyone, and we don’t want a candle scenting the mug.} On the note, simply write John 8:12, “I am the light of the world. Whoever follows me will not walk in darkness, but will have the light of life.” It doesn’t get any more encouraging than that, unless you add a handwritten sentence letting the recipient know you are praying for him/her…and then pray.

For all of the above mug ideas, be sure to encourage the recipient to pass it on, and most importantly, stay sensitive to the Spirit’s leading. He may want to change it up…and if so, to God be the glory! These are simply ideas.

Is there one of the three above ideas that resonates with you today? If so, I love to hear about it. Please share in the comment section. Thank you!

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When Ministry Begins With a Simple Mug

A Cup of EncouragementIt needed a creative title. Or so I thought until this verse came to mind.

“But encourage one another daily, as long as it is called Today…” Hebrews 13:3

Suddenly, having a carefully crafted title for this mini-ministry involving mugs didn’t matter all that much.

Because at every turn, we find people in need of encouragement.

So, how do we become more intentional in observing those around us who are in need of spiritual refreshment? Here are four ideas to get us started.

Pray. We can’t be everything to every person {Whew! What a relief!} but we can pray for the Holy Spirit to expand our spiritual vision and sharpen our discerning senses.

Watch. It’s one thing to pray for the Holy Spirit to open our eyes but it’s another to remain alert to His workings. When we pray, we’re to do so in expectation that He will answer. We don’t know how or when, but why bother praying if we’re not going to believe He is at work in and through those prayers? Yes, we pray first, but then we remain alert⎯sensitive⎯to what God may doing around us each day.

Listen. We must spiritually-hone our listening skills. This may will mean talking less and listening more.

Act. As God leads, we must be willing to follow through with what He begins, whether that’s approaching a person letting them know we’re praying for them, fixing a meal for a busy mom, or simply sharing a mug filled with prayer and encouragement.

So, for the past several weeks, snippets of an idea have been forming into what I’m sharing today. I pray it will continue becoming whatever God wants it to be, but so far, it goes something like this.

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Purchase a mug. TJ Maxx and Ross offer an array of mugs, all under 5.00 each. Ideally, I try to spot one with scripture as we know God’s Word never returns void. He alone knows how His words brimming with life will touch another.

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Pray over it. Who might God want to encourage through this small gesture of caring? Pray, trust, and act.

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Fill it. Two things will be included in my mugs. A note letting the recipient know I’m praying for them, along with a specific scripture reference, and an inexpensive but thoughtful treat to enjoy during their time with God. Practically anything can be shared in the mug {more on this next week!}. One of my mugs is filled with tea bags and another one, Hershey kisses. {Next week I’ll share ways to tie simple items to scripture.}

blogsharemugShare it. You can hand it to the person, leave it on their doorstep, or mail it. In the past, I’ve left gifts on friend’s front door stoops with a gift signed simply from Jesus, because ultimately, the glory is all His anyway for it is His love that compels us to love in return.

blogpassitonEncourage the recipient to purchase another mug and pass that mug on to another person. This could be written on the card that you’ll enclose, or you can share the idea when you hand it off.

Consider how many people in our community could be encouraged by a simple mug and a sincere gesture.

Ministry in a mugThe author of Hebrews exhorts us to encourage one another daily because he knew the weight of this world would beat heavy on our exhausted souls.

The sooner we stop believing the lie that we must offer some grand gesture to make a difference, the sooner more souls will find rest⎯the kind of rest a good, good Father desires for His children.

Cou●rage: mental or moral strength to venture, persevere, and withstand danger, fear, or difficulty.

So, who do you know, or who will you cross paths with this week, that is need of mental or moral strength to be the spouse, parent, son, daughter, friend, or fellow God-glory seeker He has called them to be? They might need a hug, financial assistance, babysitting help, or they might simply need encouragement in the form of a Psalm 46:10 moment, with mug in hand.

What’s one simple way you encourage others?

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