Purposeful Pages November 2016

Purposeful Pages Meme

Linkup info: Amanda’s blog / Hannah’s blog

And now, for the final Purposeful Pages installment. I’ve really loved participating in this linkup! Hopefully you got to know me a little better and found encouragement, inspiration, or motivation through my answers to many of these questions.

If you want to read or reread any of the previous installments, here they are:

July 2016:  a novel snippet, hanging out with Mary and Aragorn, and “licit”

August 2016:  3 books I was dying to read (only one of which I’ve actually read since then…), my blog’s name, and my dream road trip

September 2016: inspiring people, my theme song, and my blogging habits

October 2016: why I write, banned books, and my Myers-Briggs type

I’m not going to copy and paste the description again. You can read it in any of those four posts or on Amanda’s or Hannah’s blog. If you’ve been following me for any length of time you’ve likely read it before, so let’s just get on with the questions!

November 2016 Questions

Question One // Is there an organization, website, or collaborative blog that you encourages you?

The Rebelution. I think that actually fits under all three of these categories. It started when I read Do Hard Things in middle school, then I found the website. It’s an incredible book, blog, community, and movement that is really changing lives. Whether in the posts, the discussion forums, the comments, or whatever else, it’s full of similar-minded people striving to live their lives for God. You can’t get much more encouraging than that.

Question Two // When do you feel the most empowered to live life to the fullest?

Right after I read a book/blog post or listen to a song that has that sort of message. A few examples that come to mind:

Do Hard Things by Alex and Brett Harris 🙂

Don’t Waste Your Life by John Piper

“Do Life Big” by Jamie Grace

Question Three // Who is an author that has impacted you deeply?

If you have read my blog for a while, I’ll give you a chance to guess what my answer to this question is…

C.S. Lewis! Mere Christianity, The Chronicles of Narnia, The Space Trilogy… it’s all so beautiful and some of the best literature/nonfiction I’ve ever read. Narnia has been a part of my life forever and as I’ve gotten older the others have become just as fundamental in my understanding of the world. Mere Christianity especially is a book that I plan to reread often.

For more: The Trinity According to C.S. Lewis / C.S. Lewis: God Outside of Time

Question Four // Love. What Bible verse has shown you the depths of God’s love recently?

“To him who loves us and has freed us from our sins by his blood and made us a kingdom, priests to his God and Father, to him be glory and dominion forever and ever. Amen.”

-Revelation 1:5-6

I just love the connotation of God’s people as priests, and what a personal nature that gives our relationship with Him. Also, yes, I am reading in Revelation at the moment. I absolutely love it! It’s such a beautiful book literature-wise and has lots of passages like the one above that just encourage me and lift me up.

Question Five // What words do you love the sound of?

Oh man. I know I have a favorite word (definitely in Latin, and probably in English too), but I can’t think of it right now. If I do think of it I’ll update this post!

Question Six // When do you feel most alive?

When I perform for the glory of God. Dance, singing, piano, acting, anything…it can all be done to bring glory to God, and that is when I find the most joy and fulfillment in it. I love performing on stage in general, and the extra layer adds so much more to it.

Question Seven // How has blogging impacted you?

Blogging is something that I cannot imagine my life without. It has given me a platform to share encouragement and sort out my thoughts on topics and issues. I have learned how to articulately express my beliefs. I have discovered that there are far more people in the world who think the same way than I ever realized before. I have learned that friends who I have never met in person can be just as wonderful as the friends I see every day. And I have learned how much I truly do love to write and express my thoughts through writing.

Question Eight // What do you wish you could tell your five-years-younger self?

Enjoy the next few years of your life. Homeschooling and private school are incredible blessings, whether you might like them at the moment or not. Appreciate them. Public school is nowhere near as good. Plus, these years fly by. Before you know it, you’ll be a junior and have to start thinking about the rest of your life. Enjoy the last little time that you get to be a child and stop being impatient to grow up.

Question Nine // When you think of joy, what comes to mind?

A full, heart-stirring, soul-lifting love that overflows into the lives of others. A smile here, a greeting there that warms the hearts of those who go by. A life lived to the fullest with no room for regrets, every moment seized to use for God’s glory. The ability to get through all circumstances, no matter how hard, leaning on God for courage and support.

Question Ten // What kind of legacy would you love to leave?

I want to leave a legacy of putting God before everything and putting Him into everything; of loving learning and education and believing in its value; of valuing life, people, and morality; of using every gift for His glory; of joyfully living life like described in the previous answer. I want to leave a legacy of faith and trust and joy.

 

So there you have it! The last installment of Purposeful Pages. Let me know how you liked this linkup, and be sure to follow Amanda and Hannah! If you participate, leave your link in the comments, or just share your answers to some of these questions! 

love, grace

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Purposeful Pages October 2016

Purposeful Pages Meme

Linkup info: Amanda’s blog / Hannah’s blog

It’s time for this month’s installment of Purposeful Pages! I love this linkup and am always excited to answer the questions. It gets me thinking and helps you learn more about me while also hopefully taking away some kind of advice or truth.

What Exactly Is Purposeful Pages?

Purposeful Pages is a monthly link-up designed to unite bloggers on answering questions about life, blogging, the Bible, writing, and books.

October 2016 Questions

Question One // What is something (or who is someone) that has encouraged you to grow in your faith?

The fellowship group at my school has been a very important part of my life since freshman year. It’s been a place where I can go each week to unwind, enjoy conversation with other awesome Christians, and learn more about God’s truth. Now that I’m a leader, it’s great to be able to affect the lives of others through the things we talk about as well.

Question Two // Has blogging showed a side of you that you normally don’t see?

I don’t think so. This blog seems to me like an expression of who I actually am, just slightly more polished than real life. I purposefully don’t try to be super sarcastic or funny in my posts, even though that’s something I like in a lot of other bloggers, because that’s not how I am in real life and it feels sort of fake.

Question Three // What inspires your “creative genius?”

I always feel more inspired to write after I read something good. The author’s genius seeps into my soul and makes me long to pour out my own words on the page. Even if I haven’t written in a long time, reading kickstarts my motivation.

Question Four // Why do you write?

I hope to be published someday, because I want to write to share truth with the world. I want to write to inspire and uplift those who read. Mainly, though, I write because there’s no way I can’t.

Question Five // Your house is on fire, and you only have time to save one thing. Do you grab your hand-written manuscripts or your cat?

My cat, of course! It’s a living thing. Those manuscripts probably were really bad anyway, and I can always come up with more stories out of my brain. I can’t recreate my cat out of my brain.

(Not that I have a cat, but, you know, for the sake of the question)

Question Six // If you could ban any book, which one would it be, and why?

Twilight. Do I really need to explain?

Question Seven // What is your Myers-Briggs personality type (if you know it), and what unique aspect of your personality makes you who you are?

I am an ISFJ. For those that don’t know, that means I am introverted, sensing (or more focused on the concrete over the abstract), more emotional than logical, and super organized. I think one unique part of my personality is that I am very organized, good at time management, etc. and yet I am also very creative. Stereotypically, those two things don’t go together, but here I am!

Question Eight // Did you have any kind of “breakthrough” point in your life, whether it had to do with writing, blogging, art, or anything else? If so, would you like to share about it?

…no…not that I can think of off the top of my head.

Question Nine // Are there any hobbies that you have that don’t fit the stereotypical you?

Hobbies? What hobbies? Who has time for hobbies? Definitely not me. Other than reading, writing, and playing piano, none of which fit this question.

Question Ten // Even if you haven’t written an official life purpose statement, can you tell us in a few sentences what you feel called to do with your life right now?

I feel called to study hard in school and work toward college to the best of my ability, trusting God to take care of the details. I feel called to cultivate my dancing to the best it can be as a possible career path. I feel called to continue writing on this blog, to share my thoughts with the world. I feel called to live every day in the moment and enjoy what God has for me in that day.

 

I hope you enjoyed this month’s Purposeful Pages! If you have a blog, be sure to join the linkup, and if any of these questions intrigued you, please share your answer in the comments! See you next week! 

love, grace

 

September Purposeful Pages

Purposeful Pages Meme

Linkup information: Hannah’s blog / Amanda’s blog

It’s time for another round of Purposeful Pages questions! Be sure to check out my previous ones for July and August if you haven’t seen them yet.

What is Purposeful Pages?

Purposeful Pages is a monthly link-up designed to unite bloggers on answering questions about life, blogging, the Bible, writing, and books.

September 2016 Questions

Question One // How have you been growing spiritually this month? What has God been teaching you?

God has been teaching me that it’s okay to not be perfect all the time. I know I’ve blogged about this before, but I still struggle with perfectionism in the tiniest little areas of life, even when no one is watching. Recently God has reminded me that seeking fulfillment in exact perfection will never work, and that I need to relax and seek fulfillment and happiness through Him.

P.S. Amanda published a great post today that reinforced everything I’d been thinking about. If you’re struggling with perfectionism too, I highly recommend it!

Question Two // // When you’re under stress, what actions do you take that help calm you and keep you sane?

Cry? Haha. Well. Um. Moving on.

Actually, I gravitate toward playing the piano when I’m overstressed. It helps me calm down but still feel kind of productive at the same time. And it’s super therapeutic!

Question Three // Who are some people that inspire you, and in what ways do they do that?

William Wilberforce, for being basically the biggest goal-achiever in history.

C.S. Lewis, because his writing is on a level unlike any other author ever.

Elisabeth Elliot, because she had such a beautiful heart.

Gabby Douglas, because her book inspired me to work hard for my dreams.

Misty Copeland, because she’s a dancer who has made it where no one thought she could.

Question Four // Have you learned any tricks this past month that have helped you in your blogging journey?

It’s okay to take a break. Not a trick, but something I learned that is so true. Having some time off from blogging helped me so much and guess what? All of you lovely followers are still here. In fact, for some reason I gained quite a few followers while I was on a break (maybe God reminding me that it was okay to step aside and not be online all the time?).

Question Five // What is it about a book that makes you keep on reading? If you’re a writer, how can you  incorporate that into your own books?

If I want to know what happens to the characters. Nothing else grips me quite as much as characters that I care about. Obviously the plot has to be well-done, the writing has to be good, etc., but if I don’t LIKE and care about the characters the book has less chance of survival than a spider crawling across my floor at night (read: none).

 

Question Six // What’s a book cover (or album, movie, etc.) that describes your life right now, and why?

Image result for dancing through it

This is a hard question. But I think “dancing through it” describes my dance life and pretty much my entire life right now. I’m trying to push through the busyness and still enjoy every day. And in dance class…”just get through it” tends to be an often-replayed phrase in my mind. (As much as I love it, it’s difficult!)

Question Seven // Do you have a song in mind that you’d consider your current theme song? (Or a book, movie, TV show, etc.)

“First” by Lauren Daigle

Question Eight // If you’re a writer, how do you see yourself incorporated (most of the time unknowingly) inside your stories?

I think all of my stories are very clean, innocent, because there are things that some Christian writers deal with that I’m completely uncomfortable writing about. I have a feeling my protagonists tend to come across as very innocent as well, which I think is a reflection of my own values.

Question Nine // How have you seen aspects of God’s character through other people recently?

Someone held the door for me today and that was really nice. And I think that counts, because it’s a form of showing love to people and really brightened my day, and chivalry is growing more and more obscure.

Question Ten // How long, on average, does it take you to put together a blog post? Are you the morning person working at 5 am, the afternoon blogger, or the night owl up until midnight trying to throw things together?

I am definitely the afternoon blogger. Well..right now I’m the evening blogger, but that’s because I wasn’t home most of the day. But I tend to do my blog posts during the day around the same time I’m doing my homework and other “desk-work” type things.

Typically I would say it takes me anywhere from 30 minutes to an hour, sometimes longer if it’s a month-in-review or something that requires a lot of research, pictures, or linking. I’m a pretty fast blogger.

 

So there you are! I hope you enjoyed this post and learned something about me through the questions. If any of the questions interest you, share in the comments below! And if you have a blog, you should definitely join the linkup! 

love, grace

Purposeful Pages August 2016

Purposeful Pages Meme

Linkup information: Hannah’s blog / Amanda’s blog

I was on hiatus when this month’s Purposeful Pages came out, but now I’m going to finally participate! I had lots of fun with this last month and am so excited to do it again!

 

What Exactly Is Purposeful Pages?

Purposeful pages is a monthly link-up designed to unite bloggers on answering questions about life, blogging, the Bible, writing, and books.

 

August 2016 Questions

QUESTION ONE // WHAT BOOK OF THE BIBLE HAS TAUGHT YOU THE MOST THIS MONTH?

Recently, I’ve started reading a Psalm or two before bed every night, and am realizing how much I love the Psalms. If you need encouragement and strength, go to the Psalms. If you need to be reminded of who God is, go to the Psalms. If you want to better appreciate the beauty of the Bible, go to the Psalms. It’s the best way to end the day!

QUESTION TWO // HOW WOULD YOU REACT IF YOU WERE IN THE POSITIONS OF EITHER ESTHER, IF YOU’RE A GIRL, OR DANIEL, IF YOU’RE A GUY?

Ooh. I like to think I would do what Esther did and be brave and stand up for herself…but no one knows how they would react in a situation like that until they are actually there…

QUESTION THREE // IF YOU COULD HAVE A BOOK CHARACTER FOR A SIBLING, WHO WOULD IT BE, AND WHAT MAKES YOU TWO ALIKE?

Elsie Dinsmore. It’s no secret how much of a role model I’ve always found her, and maybe just by being around her some of her incredible love for God would rub off on me?

QUESTION FOUR // IF YOU’RE A NOVELIST, ANSWER: HOW WOULD YOUR MAIN CHARACTER MOST LIKELY SPEND HIS OR HER FRIDAY NIGHT? IF YOU’RE NOT A NOVELIST, ANSWER: HOW WOULD YOU MOST LIKELY SPEND YOUR FRIDAY NIGHT?

Going with the main character of my Alice in Wonderland retelling, Helen:

In England, she would spend her Friday night at home with her father and sister reading and keeping an eye on the house. If her brother William dropped in, she would be obliged to entertain whatever girl he brought with him.

In Wonderland, she would get dragged to a lavish dinner party by Adelaide, her royal friend.

QUESTION FIVE // WHAT ARE THE TOP THREE BOOKS YOU’RE JUST DYING TO READ?

  1. The Five Enchanted Roses collection (neeed to reeead)
  2. Wicked by Gregory Maguire (because I saw the musical this summer, it’s great and I want to see how the book compares)
  3. Dear and Glorious Physician by Taylor Caldwell (a vintage book I picked up on a road trip that’s about the man who wrote the gospel of Luke…how cool is that?? Plus vintage books are cool anyway)

QUESTION SIX // CAN YOU BRIEFLY SHARE THE STORY BEHIND YOUR BLOG’S NAME?

My blog’s name comes from Philippians 4:8, which I actually shared in my last post:

“Finally, brothers, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is just, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is commendable, if there is any excellence, if there is anything worthy of praise, think about these things.” -Philippians 4:8

I want to encourage us to live out this verse, to think about things like those, and to live lives that are honorable, pure, lovely, commendable, excellent, etc.

QUESTION SEVEN // WHAT DO YOU CONSIDER TO BE YOUR BLOG’S “BRANDING,” OR SIGNATURE? WHAT SETS YOUR BLOG OR SOCIAL MEDIA PLATFORM APART FROM OTHERS?

That’s a hard question.

I definitely think my writing style is different from a lot of blogs I’ve read. I try to be professional and helpful in the majority of my posts while still being inspirational and coming across as a person. (How am I doing?)

QUESTION EIGHT // WHO ARE A FEW OF YOUR FAVORITE BLOGGERS?

Cait, who I recently discovered and makes me laugh out loud while reading her posts. I’ve followed Deborah O’Carroll for a long time and really love her blog(s). Katie Grace is another one who makes me laugh a lot. Emily is great. Schuyler makes me think. Olivia, who hasn’t posted in a while but still has lots of great stuff in her archives. And of course Amanda, who co-hosts this linkup and inspires me so much!

QUESTION NINE // IF YOU COULD GO ON A ROAD TRIP OF YOUR DREAMS, WHERE WOULD YOU GO AND WHO WOULD YOU SPEND TIME WITH?

I would gather my sisters and all of my closest Christian friends together, add in a sprinkling of Christian blogger friends who I would love to meet in person, and throw in my dog for fun. We would start in Florida to visit Disney World, Seaworld, and Harry Potter World. After that we would make our way up the East Coast, stop at the Outer Banks for a while, and then stop in D.C. to see some shows and visit some museums.

Once out of D.C., we would continue north, stopping in Baltimore and Philadelphia before reaching our final destination: NYC. There we would stay for a couple of weeks and take in shows and city life galore before heading home. (Can you tell I love cities?)

QUESTION TEN // USING FIVE WORDS OR LESS, TELL A STORY.

That day, she won life.

(hmm…new story inspiration? maybe…dystopian? we’ll see.)

 

I hope you enjoyed this month’s Purposeful Pages! If you have interesting answers to any of these questions, share them in the comments, and if you have a blog, be sure to participate! Visit Amanda or Hannah for more information. (If you participate, leave me the link. I’d love to read it!) 

love, grace

Purposeful Pages July 2016

Purposeful Pages Meme

Aaand it’s here!!

The first Purposeful Pages link-up was launched by Amanda and Hannah on Saturday, and today I finally get around to participating! I’ve been so excited about this ever since it was announced and am so happy the time is finally here.

 

What Exactly is Purposeful Pages?

Purposeful pages is a monthly link-up designed to unite bloggers on answering questions about life, blogging, the Bible, writing, and books. Visit Amanda or Hannah’s blogs for more info!

 

July 2016 Questions

QUESTION ONE // WHAT VERSE AND CHAPTER OF THE BIBLE INSPIRED YOU THE MOST THIS PAST MONTH, AND WHY?

“And Mary said, ‘Behold, I am the servant of the Lord; let it be to me according to your word.'” -Luke 1:38

This verse inspires me so much; this whole passage does, actually. Here’s Mary, a teenage girl engaged to be married, and an angel appears to her and basically tells her that her whole life is going to change.

She must have been terrified at the thought of what she would have to go through in terms of what people would think of her, etc. and the idea of being the mother of such an important child, and yet this is how she responds. She trusts that God knows what He is doing and can take care of her. I want to have that kind of trust!.

QUESTION TWO // WHAT’S A BOOK (FICTION OR NONFICTION) THAT YOU READ OR CONTINUED READING THIS PAST MONTH THAT REMINDED YOU OF AN IMPORTANT TRUTH?

Rose in Bloom by Louisa May Alcott reminded me that the things the world values are not always the things that will make you happy or do the most good. Rose is such a role model for me! She’s not afraid to be different from those around her if she knows it isn’t the best for her to follow their example.

QUESTION THREE // DO YOU HAVE ANY GOALS FOR YOURSELF THIS MONTH? IF SO, WHAT ARE THEY?

I haven’t really been setting specific monthly goals for myself, but there are some things that I want to do:

  • Get back on pointe after a minor injury I had this spring
  • Finish Camp NaNoWriMo with a rough draft of 30,000 words
  • Stick to my blogging schedule (so far, so good!)
  • Read a bunch of the books on my summer to-read list

QUESTION FOUR // HAVE YOU DISCOVERED ANYTHING NEW OR CHANGED YOUR BLOG AROUND THIS PAST MONTH?

I don’t think so. Unless you count my new Mon/Wed/Sat posting schedule.

QUESTION FIVE // WHAT IS YOUR FAVORITE BLOG POST THAT YOU WROTE IN JUNE?

Probably 6 Ways to Use Your Summer Well. I don’t know why, I just really enjoyed writing that one. I also really like Thoughts From a New Harry Potter Fan and How to Take Sermon Notes.

QUESTION SIX // CAN YOU SHARE ONE QUOTABLE THING FROM YOUR NOVEL/BOOK (IF APPLICABLE) THAT YOU RECENTLY WROTE?

My book is still in the rough draft stage so there probably isn’t anything even remotely quotable in there, but let’s see…

Keeping her out of the way was exactly what Helen had intended to do. So how did she find herself standing with Adelaide against the doorway of the king’s secret council room, eavesdropping?

“It’s for everyone’s good,” Adelaide insisted. “If we don’t know what’s going on we could have a war sprung on us. Besides, I’ve heard the prince is very handsome.”

As if that had any relevance to what they were doing right now. It’s not like they could see what was happening.

QUESTION SEVEN // WHAT BIBLICAL CHARACTER WOULD YOU GET ALONG WITH THE MOST, AND WHY?

Hmmm…

Can I say Mary again? I think I would really like hanging out with her.

QUESTION EIGHT // FAVORITE NEW WORD UNEARTHED FROM THE DICTIONARY?

Licit, adj: Conforming to the requirements of the law, not forbidden by law, permissable

We all know about the word “illicit”. I just thought it was cool that this word existed too. Who knows why it didn’t catch on like illicit did.

QUESTION NINE // IN THE BLOGGING WORLD, WHAT’S ONE THING YOU HAVE LEARNED ABOUT YOURSELF?

That I am much more comfortable sharing my beliefs and opinions when it’s behind the comfort of a screen. In person, I can be very shy about sharing opinions contrary to the norm, but for some reason I have no problem sharing things like that on a blog for the whole world to read.

QUESTION TEN // WHAT FICTIONAL CHARACTER WOULD YOU SPEND THE DAY WITH, AND WHAT WOULD YOU DO?

…can I pick like twelve characters instead of one? No?

Then I’m going to go with Aragorn from The Lord of the Rings. Just because recently I started thinking about him like he really existed. And then I realized he didn’t and became really sad.

 

So there you go! The first set of Purposeful Pages questions. I hope you enjoyed this! I sure did! 

If you have a blog, you should totally participate! Go to one of Amanda’s or Hannah’s blogs to get the full details. Definitely leave me the link to your post so I can read your answers! 

If you don’t have a blog, feel free to answer these questions in the comments! 

love, grace