#goals | Medgina’s Musings

#goals

by Medgina Saint-Elien

Hey guys! I hope everyone had an amazing start to the New Year.

One of the first things I thought of doing was writing down a list of goals that I want to achieve for the year and would help me in the future too.

I have a love/hate relationship with “goals” because it’s become a movement and not in a positive “go get ‘em tiger” way.

A girl posts a picture of her hair. #goals. A guy posts the details of what a perfect girlfriend would be. #goals. A litter of puppies in a basket. #goals. Do you catch my drift?

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JUST BE HELD

justbeheldRemember that childhood song, “He’s got the whole world in His hands?” It started out with God holding the whole world in His hands, and then went into how He has you and me in His hands, and sisters and brothers, tiny babies, and just all of us! He has the whole world in His hands.

God in all His mighty, in all His busyness thinks of the tiniest creatures and lovingly holds and tends them. Reflecting back, I’m realizing the simple song held so much power. It was a small declaration that availed to much.

In a world where the hustle and bustle is the norm, when do you ever take rest? You have this to do and that and you have to “glo up” and then you have to climb the ladder to success. You have to go to work, go to school, go to church. You have a doctor appointment, you have to take your child to school, you have to finish up on a special project. You have all these things to do and so you stuff them into your day, hoping they’ll all fit. No – you make sure everything all fits and then you do the same thing the next day and the next.

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None of the Lights

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As a child, my classmates would ask me what I got for Christmas. And sometimes, I would lie. (Sorry, guys!)

christmas15-14I would lie because sometimes, I didn’t get anything. When I did, it wasn’t like racks on racks on racks. We didn’t put up a Christmas tree, we didn’t put up lights.

I would hate the last part because I thought the people driving by would think we weren’t Christians. Our neighbors knew we were but the young me felt like because we didn’t have lights on our house, they’d think we weren’t really what we said we were. Because Christians would definitely have their lights up for Christmas, wouldn’t they?

My parents taught me that it isn’t the stunning decor that represents our faith, but our hearts!

christmas15-8My two favorite memories include waking up to lights of different sizes and colors twinkling around my room. My aunt had gotten me a small pink Barbie Christmas tree! I loved the tree and used it until that bad boy wore out.

The other memory is going to my church banquet every year. We’d dress up in gowns and suits and eat dinner during entertainment. And when the clock struck 12, we’d say “Merry Christmas” and there’d be hugs and kisses all around.

The church banquets weren’t complete because my mother wasn’t there. I’m not sure if any of those times she was in the hospital, but I do remember her being home and telling my siblings and I to “go, go, go” because she didn’t have the strength to and still wanted us to be kids and have fun.

We’d come home and show her so much love! Christmas spirit runs rampant in my house! Think warm scents, feasts of food and loud holiday music.

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As I work at the mall these holiday seasons and see people spending like crazy, kids and teens yelling at their parents, and parents clutching pages of wish lists, I’m like…wow. There’s nothing wrong with getting and giving gifts but sheesh! Do not let consumerism consume you. Give with a happy heart and be grateful for whatever you do get! I personally think that’s one of the best parts of Christmas: giving something you know someone will appreciate!

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Every Christmas, I have appreciation. What I thought I was missing shows me that I can live without them. I can give and get as long as these material things don’t reign over the reason for the season.

I know I could’ve asked to decorate our home or hint at gifts but I didn’t feel like it mattered as long as I was with my family.

I can enjoy seeing all of the lights, singing Christmas songs, and watching 25 Days of Christmas on ABC.

And if you ask me what I got for Christmas, I can say “nothing” when my answer is just that. But what I do have is a Savior. And He came for all of us – the biggest present in the world and all we need to do is accept Him.

So Merry Christmas everyone! Remember to celebrate Jesus. I hope you enjoy your eggnog, get all that you want and make beautiful memories with the beautiful people you have in your life! Love you all.

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Photos by Steven DiGiuseppe

Worth It

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I considered not posting this look because my belt was slightly crooked. Extreme? Yes. But I wouldn’t had really done it. What my issue is: is the fact that the thought even came to mind!

On my contributing post on the Bronze Bombshell, I talk about how hard I am on myself when it comes to the material I put out. I can’t procrastinate if I tried and trust me, I’ve tried (just as a little experiment lol). Upon getting any assignments, I must complete it or at least start it as soon as I have the time. I literally have to. Oh, I work on breaks and holidays, too. Not like a maniac but I have this thing where I have to do at least one project in a break period, or else I feel like I wasted time. 

I just don’t like giving myself unnecessary stress. So to avoid it, I do what I have to…early. 

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Of course, I do like relaxing. I love relaxing but in the midst of school, work and blogging, I have to tell myself to take a break…to just c h i l l.

Being a hard worker is great, but always having to perfect that work sometimes isn’t so much. 

I actually didn’t know I worked myself too hard until this year. My friends told me!

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My parents raised me with the mentality that my best is always enough and I took that and ran with it. All throughout elementary, middle, high school and now my last year in college, I always sought out to perfect my work. If I got a B+ on a paper, I’d do a rewrite to get an A. (I did that this past weekend.) If there’s an extra credit opportunity, I always always take it. I loveeee extra credit! Again, this isn’t a bad thing.

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Now, there are different forms of perfectionism. As I was writing this post, I was trying to determine if I was one (perfectionist) wholly and did my research and was like “wait, all of this isn’t me!” Let me not put myself in a box. So, I’ll just be talking how any form of overwork can be a negative.

An issue can be that you seek approval from others and feel the need to please them. An issue can be that you think negatively of yourself and not give yourself enough credit. An issue can be that you’re not being satisfied with your looks so you constantly make up yourself to ensure you’re looking your very best. An issue could be thinking you have to fix yourself before God can fully love you and prepare you for your future. Or your issue could be something like mine – needing to learn how to gift your body with a break from going too hard at work.

Whether it be with work, looks, or whatever, every single human being need to come to a realization that our best work won’t always be perfect, but it is the best you can do and that’s enough!

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I work so hard because I don’t like the notion of settling, yes. But I also work hard because I know where I want to be. However, no matter how hard one works, it doesn’t mean success will come faster. Success comes when God allows it to. That doesn’t mean to procrastinate, no no no. Efficiently do your part and you’ll see God has been doing His all along.

His love goes over and beyond our limitations. His grace lets us be imperfect in every aspect of the word and is sufficient for us. His strength is made perfect in our weakness (2 Corinthians 12:9).

The world’s view on “perfection” isn’t what we ought to strive to be. As Christians, we were made to be mirrors of God’s love to everyone we come across. While here on this earth, we participate in a journey of personal transformation in loving Christ more, others and ourselves.

The road isn’t easy, nor is it a popular route. But it is worth it.

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Hat & Accessories: ALDO/ Belt: SheIn / Skirt: Thrifted / Shoes: G by Guess

Photography by Cassie Ettman

#PRAYFORPARIS

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How do you react when tragedy is heard around the world?

In hate?
In fear?
In terror?

This past Friday, the world was faced with devastating news of the Paris attacks. Several suicide bombers and gunmen hit a string of popular venues including restaurants, bars, a stadium and concert hall – leaving over 100 killed and even more wounded.

The nation is reeling and the rest have been pulling together in solidarity for the country.

We’ve experienced terrorist attacks on our homeland and have continued to witness the world get more dangerous and engulfed in hate and evil. Because we are so exposed, it doesn’t mean we should stop feeling. Desensitization prevents us from acting proactively.

Seeing photos, learning the names and hearing personal stories from survivors and from those who lost loved ones can evoke heartbreak and a feeling of helplessness but there is something you can do.

Turn to prayer.

Whenever something tragic happens, everyone is quick to say “pray for this” but I have a few issues with the way we go about this.

My youngest sister brought up my first point: “Who are they praying to?”

Her question was half rhetorical but she still sort of expected some answer. She understands that many aren’t believers of Christ but she had no idea how they could pray if they believed their prayers aren’t going anywhere.

My issue is that society says it, but doesn’t do it. We have become a generation where we consider raising awareness through a hashtag, a like, or a repost is enough. But it’s not.

Prayer is.

The power of prayer is matchless to any act you do in life. It’s an open conversation between you and God. It’s your main-line of communication. You call, He answers. It may not be in the answer you want, but one thing for certain is that Christ always picks up.

He never misses your call. It’s never dropped or ignored. He loves to hear from you because it’s as simple as this: He loves you.

It’s normal to feel a vast array of these feelings when disaster like this strikes. It’s human nature. It’s normal to have questions. And it’s even more normal to react based on these feelings.

However, don’t allow your feelings to lead you to irrational behavior. Violence doesn’t solve a thing, but add on to the circle of hate. Stay vigilant and put your hope in Christ. Your prayers are going somewhere. If you can turn to Him when disaster hits, you can surely stay with Him during the calm.

Okay, maybe you don’t know what to pray. I came up with 3 definites on my own list:

  • For Muslims to be protected from the backlash of hate. Yes, we may not share the same religion, we share the same race. Prayer for humanity is integral in our faith.
  • For the broken hearts of those affected
  • For love.

I came across this perfect article that goes more into detail about how Christians should pray when terrorism strikes. One point I loved was where the author mentions to “Praise God that He is sovereign, that He has ultimate control over all, and that nothing takes Him by surprise (Isaiah 45:5-7). On behalf of yourself and others, ask God for a passion and love for Christ that DRIVES OUT FEAR (1 John 4:18).” What I particularly loved the most was the beautiful prayer that they had and I knew I had to share with you all:

God of faithfulness, we come to You in anguish
after the targeted attacks on our nation.
We are filled with anxieties and questions.
What words of supplication
can we bring before You,
what prayer, what deeds?

God, we need Your grace
to center our minds and settle our hearts.
We need Your hope
to sustain our passion for justice
and our will to be peacemakers.
We need Your wisdom to help us recognize
your presence dwelling within us
and within every being you have made.
We need your courage
to live as children of light, hope and love,
putting away all darkness, fear and hatred.

Take from us all longing for vengeance.
Fill us with compassion for victims of violence
throughout the world.
Give us a love that is not withheld
even from our enemies.
Grant that our leaders may act justly.

Be with us in our prayer.
Help us to truly believe,
not only in Your abiding presence,
but also in the power of prayer
to move mountains.

Pull us from the grasp of violence.
Guide our steps in Your way of peace.
Amen.

#prayforparis isn’t just a hashtag. It’s not just a temporary movement. It’s an action that should be done fervently. Prayer won’t change what happened, but it can transform our reactions to such hate. It soothes the hearts of the broken, wipes the tears from the weary and lovingly hugs those in despair. Jesus can.

So pray for Paris. Pray for the United States. Pray for this world.

Christian Instagrammers To Follow

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I don’t know about you but it’s really difficult to keep your eyes “on things above” when corruption is all up in your face and page and Instagram and…life.

Nudity. Porn. Profanity. There’s just some things you shouldn’t have on your feed. And that Explore Page?! Bruh.

Just be aware that even in our relaxed time, it’s so easy to slip and fall into sin. Even when you don’t intentionally look, it’s BAM. And you’re spiritually beat. 1 Corinthians tells us all to be alert and to stand firm in our faith! So keep guard, guys.

With that being said, you may need an Instagram sweep. Every once in awhile, I unfollow negative influences on my timeline whether it be Instagram, Twitter or Facebook. You might have to do this to clean up your own feed. You can follow who you want, but as a believer, I find importance in following other believers as well. We need encouragement and reminders in this immoral world. We need to be exposed to the Word on social media to be strengthened and become more equipped and more unashamed in Jesus Christ.

As much as the world has different artists, it’s refreshing to find people who are just as talented and artistic but most of all from the same faith. It’s rare to find but these people exist, guys – they EXIST! They’re boldly living for Christ with their gifts and simply seeing their posts on their personal style, art or everyday issues is super inspiring.

And so I encourage you all to get some positivity, hope, faith and Jesus on your timelines! A little bit goes a long way. I’m so happy to have found these gems through my own Instagram and I hope you take it upon yourself to support them, too! Continue reading

Shedding Light Onto Your Fears

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Fall is here and while the weather isn’t what I expected so far, I will forever have love for this season. Everything looks so cozy even when there’s a crispness in the air.

The one teeny (yet popular) detail I don’t like about fall is Halloween. While I don’t celebrate, watching all the decorations go up gives me the chills….hehehe. Seriously. ☹

Now if you know me, you’ll know about my fear of basically everything. I know, I know. Medgina? Afraid? The answer is a solid yes. I can’t sleep in the dark or watch a scary movie or listen to a scary story or breathe at a normal pace if a cat is five feet away from me (long story). My fears have prohibited me from doing soooo much and I didn’t realize it.

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