From Masters to Masterpiece..

Today is the day!

I am excited!  For real,  I am beyond excited!  More like ecstatic and overjoyed.  I remember the day I received my acceptance letter into Howard University in 2012.    At the time I was working full-time as an Administrative Security Technician at the Environmental Protection Agency.  My husband and I had just celebrated our 9th year of marriage and we were privileged to be raising our amazing four children whose ages were 2, 5, 7, 13.

Before I get into the true purpose of this blog I wanted to share a quick testimony.  While I initially started the masters program part-time, mid way the Lord pressed upon me to leave my full-time job and become a full time student.  This thought was frightening to me!  In my eyes having two incomes was without a doubt needed to support a family of six.  I had repressed the thought and continued to work full time and take classes in the evening.

Just like a ball you push down in water -once you let go it floats back to the top.  For me each time I would push the thought down it would resurface even louder.  Finally instead of ignoring it I began to pray about it and did that consistently for a couple of weeks.  One evening my husband came home from work and I told him I wanted to share something that was on my heart. I’ll never forgot his response.  He said, “Whatever your feeling lead to do, I will support you.”   Well there you have it!   I stayed on my job for a couple more months and put in my resignation letter two weeks before the fall semester began.  For the first time I was enrolled as a full-time grad student.

The decision felt wrong.  I felt like I was doing the wrong thing.  It didn’t feel right because I couldn’t see how this would pan out,  yet deep down inside I knew it was what I was supposed do.   Two days after leaving EPA  I received a letter in the mail stating that I was chosen to receive a donor scholarship which would cover my tuition for the upcoming school year -including my books.  What?!?.. {Insert shout right here!}   If I had not taken that leap of faith the Lord would not have been able to show me how he wanted to provide for me.

My greatest takeaway – Faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen.  The opposite of fear is faith and for once in my life I had chosen faith.   This was growth for me because throughout my life and well into my adult years I battled with fear and self-confidence.  Fear of the unknown and a low self-esteem that left me walking around aimlessly, wandering with no true purpose.  I’ve battled for years with not knowing who I was and what my true purpose was in this world -which leads me into the heart of this blog.

Today is more that just receiving a master’s degree.    Today I celebrate the fact that at 37 years of age I am completely aware and accepting of who God has created me to be – In his word he calls me HIS MASTERPIECE.

My desire is for my life to be an open book.  I’ve had struggles in my marriage and challenges raising my children, we’ve struggled having one income and one car.  We’ve struggled with decision-making and maintaining balance.  In spite of each challenge I have learned to tap into God’s love for me, his thoughts about me and the way he sees me which is not contingent upon any of my outside circumstances.    I’ve made the decision to unpack my bags and live in this space.  Living in his love long enough to personalize it and embrace it as my own.  This understanding has  less to do with me and everything to do with HIM.

If you have ever been one to struggle with your self-esteem or purpose in life, I encourage you to begin to search the scriptures to find out God’s thoughts about you.  Once you can stand in the knowlege of Christ’s love- for you- that’s when purpose and destiny really begin.    Psalms 139 is a powerful reminder that we are fearfully and wonderfully made, marvelous are thy works and my soul knows right well.

God’s desire is that we come to know more about him so that we can know more about who we are.  This is where we are able to live most authentically.  God pursues and loves us always! When we don’t feel good about ourselves, when we’ve gained weight, when we’re not the best husband or wife, parent, sister and friend and even when we are.  There is nothing that can separate us from Christ’s love – not even ourselves!  The world is waiting for you to make your mark on it.  God wants to show you who you are at the core and the world needs your impact and influence.

Today as you master other areas of your life know that you are richer in knowing that you are Christ’s Masterpiece, one that has been called to re-present HIM on earth as only you can!

With all my love,

 

Kristin C. Jennings, MSW

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Yoga

For a while now I’ve had a niche to take a yoga class.   This month I’ll be starting a beginners class that I’m super excited about.   I’ve heard it’s great for balancing and centering your body and even helps with quieting the mind.  I’ll have to let you know how my experience went and hopefully maybe next time, you can join me!

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Family Ties..

Family Pics2-008

Family is everything!  Most people who know me understand the value I place on family and their importance in my life.  This year all of my children will be involved in an extracurricular activity.  Between daily homework assignments, weekly basketball games, piano and dance practices, I will need extra energy to carry me through.

To be fully present and in the moment,  I am aware that my diet and exercise regimen can make all the difference.    Life will always be busy for us all.   In spite of the busyness we must take the necessary steps towards staying healthy so that we can function at our fullest potential.

I’m looking forward to remaining consistent this week so I’ll have the endurance and vibrancy to cheer my babies on from the sidelines….their biggest and greatest fan!

 

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Holiday Leftovers..

With Christmas falling in the middle of the week,  many families have gone back to work.  After the hustle and bustle leading up to “Christmas Day” has simmered,  some unwelcomed post holiday blues can try and “settle in.”

If you find yourself with the blues don’t use your holiday leftovers for comfort.  Take note of your emotions and how you feel.  Jot them down in a journal or diary to honestly share your feelings with yourself.    Being aware of your emotions makes you more conscious of some of the food choices you make and why.     This can help you to pin point  if you may be eating emotionally by identifying feelings of loneliness, sadness or boredom.

Do enjoy yourself a nice leftover turkey or ham sandwich or even a small bowl of mac and cheese,  but be sure to eat out of hunger and not just to fill a void.   You will feel much better about yourself as you consciously make better choices..

Enjoy the rest of your holiday season as we await the arrival of 2014,  my absolute favorite time of year..

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My Purpose

Welcome to Inside Out With Kristin!    The purpose of my site is to communicate the importance of nurturing the entire being.   A cultivated mind, body, and spirit is the pathway towards a healthy individual both inside and out.

Understanding the different components and how to keep them balanced not only benefits you as the individual, but brings life and value to all those you come in contact with.

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Back to Basics…

As I walked out of the doctors office,  I knew it was time to make some changes.  “Mrs. Jennings, you should be exercising at least 3-4 times a week, drinking plenty of water and taking a daily multivitamin,  coupled with omega 3 fish oil.”

“As you get older,  your metabolism slows down, so it’s vital to develop more of an awareness of your calorie intake and output.”   Her words echoed in my mind for weeks until I had finally decided today was the day.   With determination and accountability,  I thrust myself into weekly walking and calorie counting.

This was just what I needed and it felt great!    I was going strong, 4 months to be exact and then it happened!  After becoming bored with my routine, and transitioning from a  grueling summer schedule back into work and school,  I subtly began to fall back into old habits.   In spite of my rut, I have decided to get back to basics and recommit.

But it’s the holidays,  you say!   Yes, although this is true, I’ll be bringing you some great tips on how the next couple of weeks don’t have to go down in history as guilt ridden and full of regret!   Believe it or not it’s the absolute perfect time to get back on track! How and why you ask? Be sure to stay tuned in…

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