Friday, January 30, 2015

((on loyalty and hope))

To be completely honest, it has been a really discouraging few weeks on the business side of Oh, Sweet Joy. I've gotten stiff-armed by countless boutiques, even ones I've worked hard to build a solid relationship with. Between passive and indecisive emails that just lead me on and don't give me a distinct answer, wholesale orders not being followed through with, being completely ignored and just all around bad timing with exciting opportunities that don't get to play out...I'm just feeling  defeated. I try so hard not to wrap my identity up in my brand...but I have to admit it's really difficult not to take things personally and not wear my heart on my sleeve. It's one of those situations where I'm like, "What does it even look like to find my identity in God? How does that tangibly play out in my life?"  I keep asking and pleading with the Lord, "What is it you're trying to show me and teach me here, God?" 

And I still don't know. However, some things that keep coming to the surface are:

1. "When we know God and are loved by him, the seasons of life are no longer threatening or crushing because we know that he is good and loving." This is from Chase's sermon this past week, which you can listen to here, if you're into that sort of thing.  When my hope is in God and not the stepping stones of success I try to lay out for myself, I cannot be threatened by a season where things aren't working out. It definitely isn't time to throw a pity party, but instead an opportunity to remember truths that I know and need to choose to believe. 

2. I value loyalty way too much, especially when I feel that I've been nothing but loyal. When it's not reciprocated I feel betrayed and unloved. But, how dare I demand loyalty of someone to anything or anyone other than God? It's pretty gross to see that in my heart. It's eye-opening and convicting, to say the least, that I want someone to be more loyal to me and my brand than anything else...and if I'm not careful, that can quickly result in an entitled attitude of "Give me your endless support like I've given you or you're dead to me." Ew.

So, like I said, it's not time for a pity party, but I would love some encouragement and truths that uplift you or even punch you in the gut to snap you out of it when you're defeated and deflated. I'm hoping the comment section below can be something I refer back to when life doesn't go as planned...which is often, isn't it? ;)



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  2. My personal mantra this week has become, "Don't take it personally." I'm trying to squelch my apparently repressed inner emo self and remember that people are people. I don't value them because of they way they treat me but because God values them. I feel ya.

  3. I so needed to hear number 2. I have always struggled with feeling like I give way more than I get in relationships and it inevitably leads to bitterness and feeling jaded about people in general. Especially lately, more often than not, I'm wallowing in the thought that people aren't loving me as well as I love them. When really, every need I have has already been met in God. Revelations like this are a punch in the gut, aren't they? Yeesh.

  4. We also have had a rough week that has helped me learn some truths. We lost a set of twins we were hoping to adopt earlier this week. Yesterday, I wrote more about finding hope in His plan for us even when we're going through something difficult ( if you'd like to read it). Isn't it funny how life's little tragedies bring us closer to God, which isn't a tragedy at all?

    Praying for you, friend. Thanks for your words and inspiration! -Jess

  5. I've been sitting deeply in Philippians 4 after memorizing these verses:

    Not that I am speaking of being in need, for I have learned whatever the circumstance to be content. I know how to be brought down and I know how to abound. Regardless of the situation, I know the secret to being content, whether hungry or well fed, in abundance and need. I can do all things through Him who gives me strength.

    I'm in a discouraging season with much betrayal and hurt and hard times and my faith is being hella tested. Yet I'm reminded as I speak these verses over myself, daily, multiple times a day, and always as the entire things, that doing all things through Christ doesn't mean that I'm strong now.

    It means I am needy. And that, that's a good set of news to my heart. Even if I want God to tell me to buck up, He won't. He'll simply point me to the finished work of the cross and gently help me out.

  6. THANK YOU so much for sharing these timely words of wisdom. I often read your blog but haven't commented before but I have to say that this TRULY hit home with me! It's been a discouraging couple of weeks for my business also as I had taken about 5 weeks off for medical treatment (I am fighting Advanced Late Stage Lyme Disease and Cancer) and had hoped to "restock" my shop with more items than I was able to due to my health. In addition, like you, I have experienced SEVERAL shut doors, indecisive emails, and a couple of wholesale orders that didn't come to fruition. I have definitely felt that the last couple of days I couldn't put into words what I was feeling and this summed it up PERFECTLY.

    For me when I am most discouraged and feeling defeated I have been challenged to truly confront who God is. I realized with startling reality two years ago (when my health severely declined and I became bedridden at a young age) that I was memorizing tons of scripture on having hope in the Lord and trusting in Him. I realized that while these scriptures encouraged me I wanted to KNOW who the Lord was... the names of Jesus, specifically. Working on memorizing, meditating, and understanding WHO He is has been such a strength to me through these past difficult years.

    Thank you again for sharing and for touching my heart with this post!
    Many Blessings,
    Rebecca :)

  7. I'm a big fan of 1&2 Thess during times like these but especially 1 Thess 5:16-18

    "Rejoice ALWAYS. Pray CONTINUOUSLY. IN EVERYTHING give thanks. For this is the will of Christ Jesus for you."

    I'm also a fan of plugging in my earbuds and blasting Lauren Daigle "O Lord, O Lord"


  8. This hit home in so many ways. I am the exact same way with loyalty..

    "how dare I demand loyalty of someone to anything or anyone other than God?"

    Thank you for being so vulnerable and bold in your writing. What a blessing it was to stumble upon your blog!


  9. I know this is waaaaaay late but here I am now, just popping on to your blog in months,

    I just read this morning from I Peter 1...that the trial is precious....even though it hurts (though it be tried with fire).

    It really spoke to me in a fresh way. :)


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