quantity over quality

​Confession time: I do not attend a church regularly.

Yes, you did read that right. I, Suzy, am not a member of a one specific church, and only visit one about two to three times a month.

Crazy, right? But it’s true, and very discouraging.

I feel a lack of my faith by not being part of a worshiping community regularly. I go to a homeschool co-op, and all my friends there attend pretty much every event or fellowship their church has.

But not me.

I’m home alone pretty often, as my family’s in a small financial crunch at the moment, and everyone except me works almost every day. Including Sunday.

The church I visit is an hour away from my house, but it’s the closest one that matches my family’s theology. We go to the morning service on Sundays when we can, but no more than that. Never Sunday school, never youth group, never retreats or potlucks.

It’s a little hard to bear sometimes, as a couple years ago we left a church I’ve been a part of for most of my life. I’d grown up there, knowing practically everybody there by name. It was a small church-only around 200 people at most-so if there was an event, almost everybody took part. It was a great community and had nice people.

Somewhere along the way, either my family or the pastor changed sight of how the Word should be taught, and we had to leave. This was the very year I’d first become part of their youth group. It was an awesome group, with yearly mission trips and fundraisers, game nights, amazing leaders and youth pastors, very encouraging teaching, and just overall some of the best people to be around. My four older siblings all gotten to experience that through their entire junior high and highschool lives.

But I didn’t.

I’m just little ol’ me, sitting at home and wondering what to do with my life. 😛 I try my best to watch recordings of sermons online and read a couple Christian books and study them (I personally really enjoy Saved Without a Doubt by John Macarthur and Do Hard Things by Alex and Brett Harris), but it’s not easy when you aren’t regularly meeting with fellow Christians to talk about His Word.

It’s not exactly something I can control, as I’m sure my parents don’t like it just as much as I do, but I still feel like I’m not strong enough in my faith because of this. I don’t feel adequate for God, and at times, I wonder if I’m a Christian at all.

This problem has been troubling me for some time now, but a couple weeks ago the pastor we’ve been visiting said something that really spoke to me.

It’s not the quality of your faith that matters. It’s whether you have any faith at all.

This encourages me so much. I still try my best to study the Lord’s Word, even if it’s infrequent. I still praise my Savior and think of Him when I’m troubled. I still believe He died for my sins.

And to be honest, that’s all you really need. Yes, it’s important to go to church, worship with other believers, and hear the Bible being preached, but it’s not necessary. It’s not about how much you believe in God that makes you a Christian or sends you to Heaven. It’s about if you really believe in Him in the first place.

I just thought this was so uplifting, and really wanted to share it with you. Because if there’s anyone out there in a tough spot like me, just try to remember this and it’ll all turn out for His good in the end. 🙂

He has a plan, and it’s our job to believe in it.

– suzy –

Jesus replied, “Truly I tell you, if you have faith and do not doubt, not only can you do what was done to the fig tree, but also you can say to this mountain, ‘Go, throw yourself into the sea,’ and it will be done. -Matthew 21:21

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a welcome to May 2017

april was an amazing month.

it was a month of new beginnings, of spring weather and blue skies, of smiles and celebrating God’s gift to us of life beyond this world. for many writers, it was a month of busy wordsmithing. for the dreamers, it was a month of imagination and goal-setting and daydreaming.

we gained almost thirty followers after posting for three weeks, designed a simplistic header and button, established a schedule among the contributors, and kept better equipping ourselves to provide you with inspiration and encouragement once a week. in May, we hope to continue improving and developing this up-and-coming collab blog.


the young and dreaming is a blog that has been in the works for months and months, and we finally were able to welcome you all here a few weeks ago! if you were able to take some time and look around, you’re probably aware that we currently have four wonderful contributors — Ashlynn, Bella, Josie, and Suzy. here are the two posts that they wrote for this month, not counting Suzy’s welcome post.

// A Blessed Day: Resurrection Sunday →  Bella’s wonderful reflection on the amazing sacrifice that Jesus made for us, and the fact that he is not dead but alive and loving us more than ever!

// {Never Ending} → Josie’s beautifully written post on how each and every one of us is fearfully and wonderfully made.

thank you to each and every one of our amazing followers and readers! we love you all so much regardless of who you are.

let’s look forward to a wonderful May and all of the memories that we’ll make. ❤

-with love from everyone at The Y&D-

p.s. help us reach fifty followers this month by displaying our button on your blog sidebar or button swap page! you can copy the code in the box and paste it into a page, post, or sidebar widget.

{Never Ending}

2 Corinthians 4:16:  Therefore we do not lose heart. Though outwardly we are wasting away, yet inwardly we are being renewed day by day.

Do you recall the day someone told you that you have an obnoxious laugh, that your style in clothes was odd, or that you were annoying and your opinions were stupid?

I’ll bet you remember it perfectly.

Now, every time you start to laugh at a joke, you hold yourself back. When you get dressed in the morning, you double check to make sure you fit with the trends. You never disagree with anyone and keep your mouth shut half the time.

During each one of these incidents, their words still ring in the back of your mind.

I let their words in. I let them get the best of me. — Worth it by Cimorelli

For many of you, insecurities fill your mind every day. Your hair is the wrong type or color, you’re not skinny enough, you have too many pimples; basically, you believe you’re a waste of space

So, you try to find a way to cope.

You change your appearance. You keep yourself busy. You lose weight. You act out. You refuse to let yourself cry.

Everything should be perfect then, right?

Wrong.

Pretty girl, don’t need to hide the part of you that you don’t like. Turns out, it’s my favorite thing about you. — Freckles by Maddie Wilson 

You’re still depressed, and you don’t know why. It’s never enough for anyone, and you still aren’t happy with yourself.

Oh, darling, you were never meant to change. You cannot find your fulfillment in what other people think; it’s a never-ending search. However, our fulfillment comes from God our father. Everything else will end in hurt, pain, and disappointment.

Psalms 139:14a: I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made.

He made you: your smile, your laugh, your complexion, your style, your weight, your height, your personality, your talents — the Bible tells us we were even made in God’s image.

Song of Songs 4:7: You are altogether beautiful, my darling;
    there is no flaw in you.

In God’s eyes, everyone is beautiful. Think of yourself as God’s work of art. He spent time on you, crafting every part of you.

Romans 6:23: For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.

And when you get saved, your sin has been wiped clean.

I know this is a thing that a lot of people struggle with insecurities. Sometimes, it originates from people’s words. Their insults stick to us and we remember them for a long time. Even after they’re practically forgotten, we still feel insecure.

When things get hard, we try to find ways to cope, but at the end of them, they never seem to work. However, God gives us our worth, and can I say: you all are very, truly amazing. Like a piece of a puzzle — when one goes missing, the whole picture is ruined.

I hope you enjoyed this second person story/poetry/Bible verse/song lyric compilation! Share your thoughts in the comments below.

~Josie

A Blessed Day: Ressurection Sunday

Tommorow is a glorious day.

Jesus, our Lord, will rise from the dead, bringing new hope.

Matthew Chapter 28, Verses 5-7 says,Then the angel said to the women in reply, “Do not be afraid! I know that you are seeking Jesus the crucified. He is not here, for he has been raised just as he said. Come and see the place where he lay. Then go quickly and tell his disciples, ‘He has been raised from the dead, and he is going before you to Galilee; there you will see him.’ Behold, I have told you.” 

What a miracle, right? Jesus, the Son of Man, was raised from the dead! He died on the cross so we didn’t have to, and now, three days later, he rises, showing death is not the end. If we believe, we will go live with him in Heaven after we die, and have eternal life.

How cool is that? God loves us so much, He was willing to send His only son, and sacrifice him for the sake of the world. No matter what you’ve done, you’re never so far gone that He can’t reach you. He loves you unconditionally, and always has, and always will. Easter is a great reminder of His unfailing love, the lengths He’s willing to go for us, and the hope Easter gives us. Jesus’ ressurection gives us wonderful hope, hope in him, and hope in our eternal home.

bella's-signoff.jpg

welcome

hey there, readers! i’m suzy, and i’ve been given the pleasure of welcoming you to this brand new blog. thanks so much for stopping by! we’re all glad you stumbled across this small corner, and we hope to grow it into a flourishing community soon. you may be wondering what exactly this blog is and what it’s about, so i guess i’ll just jump right into it.

about the blog

the Young & Dreaming-or Y&D-is a collaboration blog of teen Christian girls. we all share a love for Christ, and want to spread our love to as many as we can. and that’s why we are here, with this blog as our window. it’s a place where we can share our thoughts on the troubles and triumphs of life. to give encouragement when needed and brighten someone’s day. we want to give quality posts about our one and only Lord and Savior, for He is the brightest light.

who we are

the contributors here are girls varying from ages 13-17. as of right now, there are four of us authors including me, Ashlynn, Bella, and Josie. there is also the creator of this blog, but she wishes to be unmentioned at the moment. you know who you are, and you rock, girl. 🙂

what we believe

each of us has different beliefs about details of our faith, but when it all comes down to the rock hard truth, all of us believe that Christ is the son of God, who died on the cross to pay the penalty of all our terrible sins. we believe He was crucified, and raised three days later, returning to His rightful place at the right hand of our Father.

what you’ll find

using that as a basis of this blog, our posts will be about anything and everything that’s encouraging and inspiring. you’ll find thoughts, poetry, prose, articles, reflections on Scriptures, musings, etc. about once a week. some material may be lighthearted and cheerful, while some may get into the deep discussions. but with this in mind, everything will be quality-filled emphasis on optimism, faith, and encouragement.

and of course, that doesn’t mean all our readers have to be Christian either! we welcome anyone who needs a little inspiration, no matter what your beliefs.

why to follow

there are plenty of other Christian collab blogs out there that post about everyday with plenty of followers. and we know that they are all fantastic blogs with an awesome purpose, but what sets us different is we strive towards quality over quantity. the Young & Dreaming will spend time on each post, so that we can provide quality content that helps with any struggles you might have in life. if you’re having a gray day and just need a little push to keep going, you’ve found the right place.

let’s do this

so come along! join us dreamers on our ever-changing journey. we don’t know where our paths will take us, but we definitely know Who guides them.

– the Young & Dreaming team –