Real Life: Influence

Influence is defined as, “the capacity to have an effect on the character, development, or behavior of someone or something.”

Influence is powerful! I had the opportunity to teach at an event for women this weekend with Total Woman U (one of my passions!). One of my fellow teammates during her session said, “We teach with out lives. We’re constantly influencing others whether we mean to or not.” I can’t even fully grasp how true this is! 
I’m passionate about transparency. Where there is transparency – real, raw, Biblical community happens. Transparency in community is nothing but influence! In and out influence. In this beautiful, messy kind of community we’re constantly influenced by others and influencing others. It’s magnificent. 
I don’t know about you, but I want that! If you ever get to experience it, you want it more and more! I’m in the more and more craving stage now and NOT mad about it at all. First God gave me an amazing accountability partner, almost a year and going strong – messy, difficult and all. In the last month God lead me to a new small group. Just after meeting with them three times, I’ve been beyond blessed! I reconnected this week with an old college roommate, nothing but transparent, raw, real conversations – beautiful! Enough you say? NO! 🙂

Today I joined The Influence Network. It’s an online community full of beautiful believers living out their lives transparently in their day to day on goings and on the internet! Bloggers! Bloggers committed to using their words to influence others. 

My friend, fellow blogger, fellow church member, fellow instragramer, fellow teen drama show lover, and fellow nail polish addict Jessica, of Meet the Magnolias, told me about this network. I’m brand spanking new, but I want to jump in and get involved.

The Influence Network is having a link-up meet-up! And so, this is me participating. 

1 photo that you love of yourself:

First professional photo shoot! It was with my aunt and girl cousin. At first I felt weird about the individual shots, but I’ve never loved a picture of myself so much!

3 things about yourself:

1. As I mentioned above, I am highly passionate about transparency! I grew up in the great state of Mississippi. Mississippi has given me some things I’m proud of – my hospitality, my cooking roots, my accent, my good hair, my ability to make great sweet tea. But Mississippi, the southern culture, and particularly the southern church women culture, taught me some things that ended up not being good for me that took me years to overcome, Southern women and southern church women are not taught to be transparent AT ALL! They learn to save face at all cost and that the most important thing, other than “cleanliness being next to Godliness” is that at all times you must appear to have it all together. LIES! Oh how much I love everything I’ve learned and become that is opposite of this! It’s not Biblical, it’s not healthy, it’s not normal. Get thee away from me shame! So much power in transparent, raw, ugly, hard, accountability  There is FREEDOM! Told you I was highly passionate about it, I’ll shush about that one for now.

2. I love cooking and baking. You might be saying duh, but I can’t introduce myself without saying that! Allow me to somewhat briefly expound on that. I LOVE IT! Not only do I have a blog dedicated to it, I’m for real obsessed ya’ll. I recently realized that all but one of the things I collect has to do with cooking. I collect cookie cutters, days of the week notepads (used for writing down meal plans), aprons, cookbooks, kitchen towels, cloth napkins, unique silverware, mason jars, cool dishes and owls. And truth be told, many of my owls are kitchen item owls! I am also in the beginning (VERY BEGINNING) stages of planning/dreaming about opening a bakery.

3. I’m almost 30, single, and beyond ready to mingle. I thought it would be funny to say that, and yes, it is true, but a big part of who I am and where I am right now this year is being fervently committed to prayer for my future husband, that God will allow him to find me, and that my purity will be protected. There have been years where I lost hope, years where I tried to take things into my own hands, and other unfortunate years. But what there hasn’t been is years where I drew close to God in this area and allowed Him to do whatever He wanted with this desire. The closer I get to Jesus, and at times the more I beg Him to take away the desire to be a wife, it only get stronger. Know any single Godly guys? JUST KIDDING! Kinda…

1 thing you’ve learned on the Network:

Being a blogger, wanting to blog, wanting to talk about Jesus on your food blog, wanting to connect with other bloggers, it’s not weird! I’m not as dorky as I thought I was, okay maybe I am, but not for those reasons! I’m not alone. I’m not the only one struggling with grief. I’m not the only one who wants to be proud of the gifts and talents she’s been given (writing, cooking, baking, blogging) but sometimes feels weird about it. And most importantly, I’m not the only one who feels passionate about transparently living out her life.

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4 thoughts on “Real Life: Influence

  1. Nadine says:

    I feel ya on the “wanting to be proud of gifts yet feeling weird” aspect for sure! I love that I can be excited about the things I'm excited about on the network.
    Welcome friend!


  2. Annie says:

    I completely agree with your first thing! I was raised Southern Baptist and we were definitely not taught to be transparent! I'm thankful we've had the opportunity to see differently, to see that God cherishes and desires our vulnerability and the community we build from that.


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