Women Helping Women: An Intimate Chat with A Mentor

Recently, my friend Rachel and I got the chance to sit down and have tea with a wise woman named Renee. Renee has poured out so much over the years into our local church and college ministry group. Her writing has also been published on our blog, Simple Everyday Style, and she is full of seasoned wisdom and life experience. The conversation with Renee was so intriguing that Rachel and I lost track of time, and so we wanted to share with our readers some of the highlights of the conversation as recorded in our interview.

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Your Uncensored Thoughts on Beauty

Every woman wants to be beautiful in her own way.  She may have smile lines around her eyes, or use a walker to move because she is elderly, but she still wants to be attractive in the way God created her.

What makes you feel beautiful?

When I asked women at my church this same question, the responses varied. Here is some of what they said:

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Fundamentals of Personal Finance: Part III

Part III: Riding the Train; Implementing your Plan

dsc01434 Mind the gap.  Mind the gap.  Oswald Laurence’s voice echoes through Embankment station of London’s Underground Northern line.  You’ve surveyed the map and made travel plans.  Now it’s time to hop on the train and ride.  Becoming a passenger is the first step to implementing your plan.  Having mastered complex concepts, it is not the time to forget the basics!  You’ve so carefully chosen rail line, so you must be sure to “mind the gap” and not fall from the platform when you board.  Here are some final points to guide and encourage you with your personal finances!

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Fundamentals of Personal Finance: Part II

Taking visual notes: no art experience necessary

Hello, friends. Our study of personal finance fundamentals continues. We are making use of an analogy with the London public transit system. Part I of this three-part series was about Understanding the Map, and covered the fundamentals of finance. This part is entitled:

Planning your Trip: Making Goals and Choosing Investments

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Fundamentals of Personal Finance: Part I

Have you ever wanted to get your finances organized and your money invested, but you did not know where to start?

This three-part personal finance series is for you!

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Clinging to Hope in Dark Times

God is good.

One doesn’t need to turn on the news anymore to know that we are in tough times. Log  on to Facebook, scroll the news feed on your cell phone, or attend a social function and you inevitably hear of the latest shooting, terrorist act, or issue of moral decay.

If you have ever felt desperate for hope amidst all of the dark news, then then you are in good company. As the times get darker, more and more people will feel desperate for hope. This is actually a good thing; I have been encouraged lately in remembering that difficult times and persecution often result in God moving in unprecedented ways.

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Confessions of A Mind Dater

This guy you know… he talks to you. He invites you to hang out in groups and seems to enjoy your company. You are becoming friends. You can’t help but wonder: Is there something else going on here? Is he interested in that way?

And so you start to picture yourself dating him. Is this someone I could see myself with? And you evaluate him. “He likes pizza, too! Wow, it was meant to be…”. You analyze every characteristic of his that you can observe, constantly changing the verdict a thousand times. “I think that he is someone I could date” and two hours later: “Oh, what was I thinking? This is ridiculous. I don’t know ….”

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How to Know God’s Will

Young people today are inundated with choices. I once took a graduate psychology class, and the professor talked about a new phenomena called the ‘quarter life crisis’. No longer do we have just the mid-life crisis. Oh, no. Supposedly when you hit the age of 25, you face the possibility of a “crisis of choices”. Think about it: today’s world presents young people with a plethora of options: studying abroad, internships, graduate school, working overseas, teaching English in another country,  marriage questions, dating questions, missions, etc.

Amidst all of these options, one defining question surpasses them all. Everyone wants to know: What does God want for me?  Do I major in Political Science or Business? Do I attend graduate school or do an internship? Do I marry this person or not?  Do I move to Thailand or stay in the U.S.?

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Will You Please Like My Post?

If you have ever felt like social media was actually pulling you down, instead of simply being a fun, cool, and practical tool (as it was meant to be), then read on, my fellow social media addict! And if social media has never made you feel discontent, then you can probably skip reading this article.

Relationship Status? It’s Complicated

The first time I got on Facebook years go, I was enthralled from the get-go. It was an easy way to stay in touch with long distance friends and overseas contacts. It also gave me a sense of connection to others during the long work week. Finally, I got to travel vicariously (and for free) to other countries through the videos and photos of people I followed. Bottom line? Facebook had its definite perks, baby. Like double espresso perky.

Then, as time passed, I noticed something funny.  Every time I logged on, I would see that so-and-so was on an exotic trip living the high life, that Suzy got an amazing job and her own apartment, and Johnny Smith had met the love of his life. Soon I realized I was feeling incredibly discontent. Why? I was seeing only one dimension of the reality of other people’s lives.  I was comparing my ho-hum, everyday life with other people’s “amazing” online lives!

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Your Biggest Keys to Less Worry

This past spring, I unexpectedly had to find another place to live in the space of about two months. It was a stressful time, and there were many weeks where I began to think: “Can God really be trusted in this?” During those months, I pursued new living situations through the Internet, my church community, and girlfriends, but everything fell through over and over.  I knew I had to find a place by early June, but as the spring came to an end, and I still had no place to go, I began to feel a rising sense of anxiety in my heart, like a balloon that was about to burst. I knew I wasn’t going to be homeless, but I sure was feeling lost and abandoned.

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