Today, I turn 25.

A whole quarter-century…! This blows my mind.

One whole quarter deposited in the piggy bank of life already.

If I thought that time flew before, these past few years, it’s basically felt like it’s going at lightening speed with each birthday that comes around. It’s truly a blessing to see this new year; so many young adults don’t make it to this age, so I’m extremely grateful for yet another day to enjoy life’s simple joys, and to celebrate another milestone birthday.

Birthdays are always a time for me to reflect back on the past year, consider what values I’ve learned or honed, and make goals for how I want to grow at my new age over the next year.

For some reason, 25 feels like a new horizon: all the 24-and-below years neatly packaged away and left behind to enter solidly into the mid- and upper-20’s. So a few months ago, I thought to myself on what I’d want going into 25. All I knew right away was that I wanted to keep knowing God deeper, and growing in my faith and relationship with Him. It’s what brings me the most joy and satisfaction, what informs my life, and what motivates me to pursue growth as a person. After that, I thought a bit more on what values I particularly leaned on over the past year, lessons that stood out to me as good life advice for myself to continue pursuing in this new year and beyond. Here are some of those thoughts.

Love people hard.
Loving people always comes with consequences that accompany that vulnerability. However, it’s completely worth it. Especially if those loved ones are your family, or friends. It’s such a privilege to have close, supportive, and loving family + friends, and I couldn’t be more grateful for mine. They always push me to be better, and inspire me in my faith. For me, loving them often comes in the form of appreciating them as much as I possibly can amidst the craziness of life from so far away. It’s not extravagant usually, but I’ve found that often, the simplest encouraging words over the phone end up meaning the most. Continue reading

Worth It

I’m declaring it Tori Kelly Tuesday, y’all, so that I can pass along the wonderful and timely reminder that whatever is meant to be, will be. All that hard work will pay off and it’ll all be worth it – be inspired, determined, and don’t ever give up.

(And I also wanted to share the loveliness that is Tori Kelly’s music and voice, of course.)

Merry Christmas Eve!

It looks like the next couple of days will be very musical over here on the blog! I meant to post this about two weeks ago, but this post became a casualty of final exam preparation… oops. Seems like pre-scheduling my posts as much as possible in the future to keep them consistent will be my best bet going forward! But moving on…

A couple weeks ago, I woke up to the song Lord I Need You playing in my head, and I couldn’t resist singing it over and over in both my quiet time and in my head throughout the day (isn’t it awesome when the Lord puts a song in your heart? Since He knows my love for music, it’s almost daily for me!). Later that day, I was browsing on Instagram for a study break and happened to visit Sadie Robertson’s profile (she’s the daughter of one of the main people on Duck Dynasty and actually recently published a book, Live Original). Lo and behold, she had just posted a video of the Daraja Children’s Choir singing Lord I Need You at her church that past weekend! Seeing as that was the weekend right before my final exam period began, the song was such a wonderful reminder for me to recognize just how much I need the Lord in my life, in all facets.

Continue reading

Happy July!

Happy July!

Today officially marks the second half of the year…and it came so quickly (in my opinion) that I’m still a little shocked I was flipping my calendar over to this month last night. Well, with this new month come new things: namely, my new website!
I have finally moved over from my original simplechara.wordpress.com site to my own, self-hosted site: thecharalife.com!
Over the past few months, I’ve wanted my blog to be an avenue for joyous encouragement for anyone who might come across it – hence the name “the chara life”. As I talked about in this previous post, chara is the Greek word for “joy,” a virtue that is unfortunately seen less and less in our chaotic society today. I had the wonderful opportunity to study joy in my personal devotions in May, and from that study I’ve found that joy isn’t only a virtue – it’s truly a lifestyle that one pursues. And so, thecharalife.com was born, as a space that aspires to be chock-full of as much inspiration – whether it be hilarious, thought-provoking, smile-inducing, or calming – as possible.
Each week, I’ll be posting new content (I’ll explain more on the different features as they come), hoping that they’ll offer as much joy and inspiration to you as they have to me.
I hope you’ll join me on what’s sure to be a wonderful and lovely journey! I’ll be living and learning along the way, so it’s sure to be an exciting ride.