The Lost And The Found

There’s this story in the Bible, about a boy who leaves home. It can be found in the book of Luke, in chapter 15, verses 11 through 32. You might have heard it before- or not, but I’m going to tell it to you now!

Continue reading “The Lost And The Found”

Current Favourites

Hey there, you! Yes, you, sweet friend! How are you doing? How is your life at the moment?

This is a post I’ve wanted to do since like January haha- I was going to write it in February and call in ‘February Favourites’ but I never got around to it (clearly) so I’m writing it now, and giving it a much less attractive title! Anyway, I thought it would be fun to share some of my current favourite things- from foods to movies to books and more!

Let’s get started!

PODCASTS

I love a good podcast, so I thought this one would be a great one to start off with! Last fall I was really into listening to one each morning on my way to school, but recently I haven’t listened to so many. However, a few content creators I love have recently started podcasts, so how could I not share them with you? A few I’ve been loving are Coffee With Rach, The Have Faith Podcast, and Jess Sharing Joy. And a handful of my old favourites include The Girl Defined ShowTruth Talks With TaraWOAH That’s Good Podcast and She Lives Purposefully.

FOODS

Oh my gosh, where do I even start, haha! Okay, so a few foods I’ve been loving recently (and always) are sushi, smoothie bowls and avocado and fried egg on toast. As for drinks, oh my gosh, my friend got me into vanilla chai tea and it is SO GOOD! I brew it in a 1/3 mug of boiled water with a tiny bit of honey, then I add hot milk to the next 1/3 and finally frothed milk and cinnamon on top. I repeat: SO GOOD! And another one, if you know me you know I can’t get enough whipped coffee- it may be out of trend now but it is still as delicious as ever!

BOOKS

I recently read Girl Defined by Kirsten Clark and Bethany Baird, and Live by Sadie Robertson… and I loved them! I actually published a post the other day with my top five books for teen Christian girls, and those two featured! The other day I finished Concrete Rose by Angie Thomas and I’m about to start Karen M. McManus’ newest book The Cousins. 

PURCHASES

a few of my newest pineapple island bracelets!

I LOVE friendship bracelets of all descriptions, and recently I got a new order from Pineapple Island. I have always loved their jewellery- it is so simple, summery and gosh-darn adorable!!! And bonus, I have a code for you guys to get 20% off any orders from there! Be sure to use the code MEGAN20 at checkout if make a purchase (which I would recommend haha). I’ve also bought a few summer clothes (can not wait for summer) and a handful of books!

(P.S. If you do use my Pineapple Island code, please know that I may earn a small commission from any purchases made.)

MOVIES

If it’s not a 90s or 00s high school romance, I don’t want it! Seriously! My sisters and recently re-watched a classic favourite of mine- A Cinderella Story– and oh boy, do I love it every time! Another couple recent re-watches of similar genres are Clueless and 10 Things I hate About You. So I know these next couple of movies don’t fit the ‘90s or 00s high school romance’ criteria, but they’re what I’ve watched most recently! On a family movie night a few weekends back we watched Harriet, the story of Harriet Tubman. It was moving and interesting- definitely recommend. And I know I’m sappy and cheesy okay, but I was SO excited when the third To All the Boys Movie: Always and Forever, Lara Jean came out on Netflix. If you haven’t watched those, please do!

WORSHIP SONGS

I am constantly adding songs to my Spotify playlists- most lately I’ve been adding tons to my worship one. A few of my newest additions include I Belong by Orphan No More Co, Battle Belongs by Phil Wickham, Now I See by The McClures, Fierce by Jesus Culture, and Hold On To Me by Lauren Daigle.

SEASONAL THINGS

You guys! I am SO unbelievable excited for summer! It’s coming, and I CAN. NOT. WAIT!!! So I wanted to share a few things that are getting me excited for spring and summer! Firstly, I’ve been making the most of hot drinks because I won’t be enjoying them for much longer! Secondly, I brought a couple of summer dresses the other day which I can’t wait to be able to wear! Trees are beginning to blossom here in London, reminding me that bright, green trees will be on the way soon! And some days I’ve left the house without a jacket! So, slowly but surely, winter is turning to spring and spring to summer, and that brings me so much joy!

Sweet friends, I hope you’ve enjoyed this little dump of my current favourites! Do you have any new favourites? Or anything you’ve been loving lately? Let me know in the comments below!

He Will Rise

Today, Jesus lies dead in His tomb.

Grief. Mourning. Anguish.

The followers of Jesus were heavy-hearted on this day. They felt pained; their bodies weary and their eyes lifeless- as if they could weep no more. Other people went about their daily lives, but Jesus’ friends and family mourned. They mourned and they grieved for their friend… brother… son… teacher. The Messiah, the Christ lay dead in a tomb: tried, convicted and crucified for a crime He never commit.

Yesterday, Jesus was crucified.

Humiliation. Agony. Betrayal.

He was dressed in a scarlet robe; on His head was placed a crown of thorns. He was brutally mocked by the soldiers- they laughed and they pointed. They flogged him. Then He was made to carry His own cross- the very tree on which He would die. He carried it on his back up to the place of the Skull. There, He was hung on the tree. Sharp nails were stabbed through his hands, his feet. They pierced His pure, pure skin. His perfect body was overcome with agonising pain that he did not- could not– deserve. On the cross was hung a sign: ‘Jesus of Nazareth, King of the Jews’. It was written in three languages so that everyone could understand what He was being crucified for. So that everyone could laugh.

Jesus was scorned. People laughed shamelessly, whilst the sinless Son of God hung on a cross, His body slowly becoming weaker and weaker. The soldiers tore from Him His clothes; they cast lots for them.

Finally, His earthly flesh could take it no more. Jesus mustered every last bit of strength from within Him and with His last breath He cried out to His Heavenly Father.

‘It is finished’.

Then the curtain in the temple was torn in two and truly, it was finished.

But tomorrow, oh, what a glorious day! Jesus will rise!

Victory! Celebration! Triumph!

Death is beaten! It is not the end! Jesus will rise, He will triumph over the grave!

Tomorrow, life will be breathed into Jesus’ lifeless body. Slowly- slowly, He will stir, He will wake up and He will rise. He will do the humanly impossible. He will come back from the dead- destroying death and making life possible! What a perfect display of the perfect power of our perfect Lord!

Oh, what a glorious, glorious day!

The Crucifixion is undeniably the most incredible, most undeserved, most powerful act of love to ever be shown. There has been no greater display of love than this; there never will be.

The very Son of God came to earth as a mere man so that he could save us. He was blameless; perfect; holy. Yet still, He accepted death without a fight. It was the most painful death imaginable. It was undeserved. He hung on a cross at Calvary and willingly took upon Himself the sins of man and the wrath of God. He spilled His own pure blood so that He could free us from the clutches of sin and death.

Jesus Christ died a death of unimaginable horror. And He did it for us: it was the ultimate sacrifice. He poured His perfect, perfect love out over us. He paid our debt in full- He bought us at a price; a high, high price. He saved us, and now we are free indeed!

Today, Jesus lies dead in His tomb.

But have hope, dear friend for tomorrow, He will be risen!

Life Update + Things I’m Thankful For

Hey, hello and hi there, sweet friend! How are doing today? What’s new with you?

I’m so happy this sunny day because my exams are finally over and today is my last day off school before a couple of weeks off! We get done around noon today so me and my friends are going to get sushi which I’m super excited about! Covid restrictions have relaxed a little here so that we can now all meet up outside, which is great! Other than exams being over, nothing much is new with me since I’ve been so busy with school this past month or so!

Here in London, spring is in full swing- daffodils and other little flowers are popping up all over the garden, and the mornings are so bright and sunny! This past weekend, our family worked in the garden for a little while- we got out the table and chairs, washed the patio and my dad mowed the grass! The temperature changes every day but the sun is warm and some days it’s mild enough to not need a coat! I really just can’t wait for summer!

So in this post, I wanted to share a few thoughts on gratitude- not enough to do a full post, but just some things I’ve been thinking about recently.

Let me ask you, when was the last time you stopped and thanked God for everything you have?

When I say, ‘thanked God for everything you have’, I don’t mean a quick thank you prayer before you reel off a long list of please, or a few thank yous to make you feel better about all the sorrys you really should be praying.

No, I mean a moment when you’ve sat with the Lord and dwelt on the blessings he has poured out on you. Maybe tears have even come to your eyes as you realize how much more you have than you need and how comfortable you are… how He provides for your every need and more.

Life can be so busy and hectic sometimes that we don’t really think to stop and be grateful- even for just a moment. We’re so focused on the next thing and then the next that we barely have a chance to catch a breath- let alone be grateful.

But I think gratitude is really important- more important than one would first assume. You see, if we don’t take time out of our days to thank God for all the good things we have, we often forget. And when we forget how much we actually have, it can be all too easy to slip into the greedy mindset of wanting more. More, more, more!

A few weeks back, I was having a quiet morning at home while my sisters were at school and my parents were working. I was working on the blog and suddenly I was overcome with gratefulness.

This is the list I wrote on my phone, complete with the lack of capital letters and punctuation:

REASONS I’M HAPPY RIGHT NOW

  • im listening to awesome music
  • i had a great breakfast
  • im ALIVE
  • jesus loves me
  • it’s a new day outside
  • im getting sushi later
  • i have the best friends
  • i get to see a, s, t, l and c tomorrow!
  • i have a great family and doggo
  • ive been so blessed with my online platforms
  • summer is coming
  • god made this new day
  • there are flowers in the garden
  • im so loved
  • once again, im having sushi later
  • god has a plan for my life
  • i don’t have any exams today
  • i have the day off school today
  • only four more exams
  • i slept really good last night
  • theres flowers in the kitchen
  • i watched gilmore girls last night
  • im going to read my bible in a bit
  • i am so blessed!

This list wasn’t the most extensive thing. But it’s just a reminder to me that I can be thankful always, for everything and anything- be it big or small, important or not so much.

So, sweet friend, the thought I want to leave you with is this: are you going to make time today to be truly grateful?

P.S. You know I love to hear from you in the comments- what have you been up to lately? What are you grateful for today?

Just Be

I pride myself in having a very accurate memory that stretches quite a ways back. I can often remember details of conversations from months ago, and I can remember lots of specific instances from when I was quite a lot younger.

I think one of my earliest memories; certainly my earliest church memory, is sitting on the end of a pew in church, squished next to my mom, watching my dad go up on stage- either to preach or do the welcome. In my memory of this moment, all the typical church background noise is drowned out and I was focused completely on my dad- I was so excited to see him up at the front of the church!

A few years after that, my family left that church and my parents planted a church in the backroom of our house. The next ‘chapter’, if you will, of my church memories are all from home.

I remember things like jumping on my bed with my friends and sister after my mom finished teaching Sunday school in the dining room. I remember the alphabet spaghetti some of the moms would heat up for the kids whilst the adults were finishing the services. I remember sledging in the winter and go-kart building in the summer with our church family.

Then we got gifted a building. I remember what the tiny Sunday school room looked like before the building works made it more modern. It was a strange lime green colour. I remember the first coffee bar we had- it had wheels so it could be moved out of the way after the service. I remember my friends of all different ages- my best friends who I still see today, the friends who passed through church and the unlikely friendships that I formed because of church.  

I remember lots and lots of things from church over the past years. But most of all, I remember how simple everything used to be.

How I didn’t care what everyone would think of me if I danced in fancy dress during the service because I was only five. How no one at school would judge me for knowing I went to church because it was just something I did. How it was never a struggle to read my Bible or pray because it was just something my parents did with me every night.

As we grow up, things become more complicated. It sort of feels like loving Jesus isn’t as simple as it used to be.

Now, it matters what our opinions on abortion and gay marriage are. It matters if we read the Bible daily because our relationships with God are not our parents anymore- they are our own. It matters if we do our school work and our chores without grumbling because that is part of honouring the Lord.

And sometimes, it can feel overwhelming. Like we just want everything to pause- just for a moment- so we can just be in the presence of the Lord. So we can just be still and be.

And friend, if you ever feel like this too, I want to encourage you that you can just be. You can forget the worries of the world and sit at the Saviour’s feet for a minute and breathe.

Of course, these other things are super important! Having Biblically grounded opinions on abortion and gay marriage is important. Reading the Bible daily is very important! And honouring the Lord in everything we do and working without grumbling is an important attitude. It’s a way we can show little bits of Jesus to the people around us.

But if, for just a moment, you need to sit in the presence of the Lord and rest there, that’s okay too.  

Matthew 11:28-29 says, ‘Come to me all who are weary and burdened and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls.’

When we feel weary; when things are complicated, we can turn to Jesus and find true rest. We can turn to Jesus and just be. 

5 Books for the Christian Teen Girl

I love to read. I haven’t done an awful lot of it recently, but that doesn’t change the fact that I love to read. From mysteries and murders, to, well, more mysteries and murder, I love a good book!

So, I thought it would be super fun to do a post sharing a few of my favourite books… except not just any books. Not mysteries and murders at least. No, these are better! These are the five books I would recommend to the Christian teen girl or young woman trying to find her identity in Christ in this strange age in which we live. These five books are game-changers! Each one of them taught me something about strengthening my faith and standing firm in my identity. Each one of them inspired me in one way or another. And now, I want to share them with YOU!!

Continue reading “5 Books for the Christian Teen Girl”

Your Will Be Done

Okay, so here’s a fact about me: I am one of those people who always needs to know the plan.

When I say always, I mean 120% of the time.

Whether it’s a leisurely day in the summer or a busy Saturday afternoon, I need to know the exact movements of every member of my family and the precise timings of the day- virtually to the minute! But, it doesn’t just stop there! If there is no plan, I will make one, and if I can’t make one, I start to stress!

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The Joy of The Lord

What makes you happy?

For me, it’s lots of little things. Like the way the sun streams gracefully through the window in the spring. And how bees knock up against your window and then fly away again, reminding you summer is on the way. And the taste of soft-serve ice cream from an ice cream truck somewhere along the British coastline. It’s how my puppy’s face looks all smushed up when he wakes up from a nap. It’s how my cousins and I put frozen yoghurt on our noses in the summer, just because. It’s walking into a coffee shop and smelling the coffee beans. It’s eating lunch every day with my friends and all their different smiles and laughs.

But sometimes, when these things are stripped away, I no longer feel happy.

Like when a friend or a family member leaves. Or when I have to say a goodbye I’ve been dreading. Or when I hear disappointing news. These things hit me in the very centre, and suddenly, I don’t feel so happy anymore.

But before too long, the sun will come streaming through the window again, casting pretty shadows on the counter and reminding me that there are, in fact, still things to be happy for.

And that, my sweet friend, is just what happiness is. It’s ever-changing; not at all constant. Some mornings, you’ll wake up overflowing with it, but other mornings, you’ll have to remind yourself to look for it in the small things. And other mornings still, it might not even be there at all.

And although those dark and difficult mornings where we roll out of bed, completely lacking any happiness, may get us down, there is still hope. There is still hope because we can hold on to joy.

Psalm 16:11 says, ‘You make known to me the path of life; you will fill me with joy in your presence, with eternal pleasures at your right hand.’ (NIV) I love this… that in the presence of the Lord there is a fullness of joy- a joy that comes not from placing our happiness in earthly things but from being with the Lord.

Even when we feel void of happiness and even when things aren’t going our way, we can still feel joyful. This joy we can feel- it might not stop us feeling sad, but it can stop us from feeling despaired because we have this fullness of joy when we are in the presence of the Lord.

And what’s even better is that this fullness of joy gives us strength! Nehemiah 8:10 says, ‘[…]Do not grieve, for the joy of the LORD is your strength.’ (NIV)

With this knowledge, we can be joyful even when things are difficult. We can dance our way through trials and sing in the middle of the storm. Our hearts can be full of joy even when we stumble and fall. We can lift our hand and praise God in the valley because His joy gives us strength.

This doesn’t mean that difficult times won’t still be difficult. Because they will be. They will ask more of us than we could imagine, they will test us in ways we never expected and they may hurt us like never before. It might be a struggle to get out of bed in the mornings or to check things off your to-do list, or to smile when someone asks you a question. But, amidst the struggle, there is joy. A joy that comes from being in the presence of the Lord. And there is a strength to be found too. A strength that comes from this fullness of joy.

So let the joy of the Lord be your strength, sweet friend. Look to the Lord and bask in His glorious presence, and be filled with joy. The joy of the Lord.

Smoothie Bowl Dump

Hey, hello, sweet friends! How are you doing today! I can’t believe it’s still only Wednesday, how is your week going?

Here in London, spring has definitely arrived- it’s a lot milder outside and the cherry trees are just beginning to blossom! With the change in weather has come a change in other things too- fewer winter clothes, more outdoor activities and different foods- most namely breakfast! The winter just seemed a little too cold for smoothies and refrigerated food first thing in the morning, but now spring is here smoothie bowls are back on the table (literally)!

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Follow pt. 2

Simon Peter. Andrew. James. John. Philip. Bartholomew. Thomas. Matthew. James. Thaddeus. Simon. Matthias. 12 ordinary men who gave up their lives; their homes; their everyday-normal at another man’s call to ‘come follow me’. 12 boring, normal, not-extra-special, sinful men who were called to be the closest earthly friends of the extraordinary Jesus Christ.

What I love about the calling of all of Jesus’ disciples it that Jesus barely bats an eyelid at how ‘normal’ they are. He called Levi (Matthew)- a tax collector; the lowest of the low. He called Simon Peter, Andrew, James and John- fishermen; people who caught fish and cleaned nets for a living. None of the 12 He called were particularly special. None of them were rich or famous. None of them were royalty or nobility- the kinds of people you’d expect a King to spend his time with. No, instead, Jesus called tax collectors and fishermen and sinners.

And you know what’s awesome?! He calls us too!

Like we talked about in part 1 of this post, we live in an age full of this ‘following culture’- a culture where we are surrounded by people to follow; people who inevitably influence us in some way or another. It’s practically impossible to avoid the pull of the ‘follow’ button, and before we know it, we’ve added another influencer to our list of people who influence us through what they say, do, post, write and wear.

And even though it’s not always bad to be influenced by other people, it can become bad when we begin to get led in the wrong direction… away from Jesus; away from the cross.

So whilst it’s okay to follow other people, we need to make sure we’re following Jesus first and foremost. It can be tough, but every single day we need to choose Jesus… we need to reject other people and follow Jesus before we even think about following anyone else.

In order to put Jesus first, we need to be wise and discerning. Set boundaries and limitations. If you feel someone is leading you away from Jesus, unfollow! It’s really that simple. Just hit the unfollow button, and don’t look back. If you find it difficult to get in the Word before you check Instagram or even your WordPress reader, then set boundaries. Don’t go on your phone/laptop before, say, 9 am. Only check your WordPress reader 5 days out of 7. No Instagram on Sundays. It’s precautionary measures like these that help us stay on track to following Jesus, not other people.

The truth is, it breaks Jesus’ heart when we follow other people before we follow Him.

The was a time in my life a few years ago where I thought I had to ‘have it all together’ before I could be a Christian. I thought that until I could ‘be less sinful’, I didn’t have to read my Bible or pay attention in Church. I thought I had to better; more disciplined, before I could get baptised. But, friends, this is NOT the case! Jesus calls us to follow Him right here, right NOW! He doesn’t want us to waste a second… it doesn’t matter how sinful we are or how messy our lives are. We do NOT have to clean ourselves up before we turn to the Father, he wants us just as we are!

That is the kind of love that Jesus has for us, shown in Romans 5:8- ‘But God demonstrates his own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us.’

WHILST WE WERE STILL SINNERS, He loved us. He loves us. And he calls us, just like that, to follow Him.

Just as Jesus called to these men ‘come follow me’, He calls to us too. And just as Jesus didn’t care that these men were poor and sinful, He doesn’t care that we are. When we respond to His call of ‘come follow me’, He takes what little we have and rejoices.