Reflection is

Well, sometimes not quite as simple as we’d like it to be.

Especially if your year was as hectic and crazy as mine. One thing 2023 taught me was that things can always go left pretty quickly, and it’s up to us to call on God to make it right. Not our capabilities. 

I learned this fast when I found out I was pregnant in February. On my trip to Texas to connect with family and friends, I was tired for the majority of the trip. I'm talking depleted, mentally and physically. What tipped me off to the pregnancy was when I cooked my favorite take-out dish for my brother and friend. I couldn’t even eat it 🤢 It tasted that weird. I had to ask them if everything tasted alright to see if I was tripping. 

As soon as I returned home I took a pregnancy test and sure enough, it was positive. During March and April, I had killer morning sickness (I mean I felt like I was dying, baby boy put me through the wringer), and I was diagnosed with prediabetes. Sure, I'd put on some COVID weight, but I never expected to be pre-diabetic. It put me at high risk for gestational diabetes, which is terrible for pregnant moms and their babies. So, I needed to make a shift in my diet and a lifestyle change.

This was one of the first major shifts in my life during 2023. 

A positive change was my husband (then boyfriend) and I faithfully attended premarital counseling and decided to commit our lives to Christ. Hubby was baptized on April 22nd for the first time, and I recommitted.

Shortly thereafter, I remember the Pastor asked us about potential wedding ceremony dates during one of our sessions. He wanted to know where we planned to tie the knot. I told him we were going to pop by the courthouse and his response was:

“Oh no, you’ll have it here at the church.”

We were blessed with a free venue for our small wedding, the first of many blessings that would trickle in throughout the year. Another positive was I completed my copywriting internship with a pharmaceutical marketing agency, and they selected me for the position. My official start date was May 1st.

Little did I know God was positioning me in His timing.

During this time in my hometown, Michigan, my Grammy was dealing with what we thought was “Long COVID”. It turned out to be lung cancer. She was in the hospital within two weeks of her diagnosis and her health plummeted.

The day I decided to fly out I was pushed by my late Auntie Charlotte’s spirit. She’d passed in 2016 and the only time I’d ever interacted with her spiritually was the night before her passing. I believe your loved ones can cross barriers or realms in a variety of ways; whether it be dreams, scents, or memories.

I vividly remember cooking in the kitchen and I got a whiff of my Aunt's perfume. I believe this was her way of telling me I needed to go see my Gram one more time. So, I booked a flight home on April 26th. Everything happened so fast, it honestly is still hard to process.

The following night, I got into a major altercation with my brother. He had a mental break while we were on the road and ended up fighting/carjacking me with my two-year-old in the backseat. Once I got the police involved, they intercepted my brother quickly and luckily the baby was safe, no one had gotten hurt. He ended up getting hospitalized, it was either a mental institution or jail and I wasn’t pressing charges.

While that was happening, my Grammy was transitioning from this Earth. It all happened on April 27th. Two traumatic events, simultaneously. It was life-changing to say the least.

I can attest to the fact that God can heal your traumas. 

He was the only one who helped me cope with losing my Grammy and my brother on the same night.

The turnaround was insane. The following week I had my wedding on May 7th. Our Pastor even mentioned pushing the date back, but I was grateful for the timing of things because I was able to attend this positive event amid a sad time. My Grammy's funeral was the following week and we decided to turn it into a family road trip (flights were mad expensive at the time).

Our stop in Gatlinburg was nice as always, I would even say it’s become a new tradition, and the service turned out to be beautiful (even though the preparations for the funeral were messy🙃).

Once everything died down and we were on our trip back home to Tampa, I had another unexpected loss that hit really hard. I lost my first copywriting job, not even a week after my Grammy’s funeral. I originally took it too personally and toxically blocked every single person who followed me from that company, until one of my teammates got in contact with me. 

They laid her off too, she was a bomb interior designer. So I figured they truly were cutting people to aggressively prepare for the cold front in sales. This is when I learned that God had better plans for me.

Emphasis on God’s timing.

I transitioned companies smoothly without a hitch. He’d covered me, yet again. While I thought this opportunity was going to be a second source of income, He had different plans. Being content with whatever I had in any circumstance was a big learning curve for me, but Philippians 4:11 spelled it out nicely.

As our year continued, we finally made it to summer. My daughter stayed with my mom for the majority of the summer, giving my husband and I a break to figure ourselves out and prepare for the arrival of our second child. This time also gave me the space to dive into my relationship with God without any distractions, which was truly critical to my spiritual journey.

I was productive in creating a space for just us, and I was beginning to develop a consistent prayer life that showered blessings on us in ways I didn’t expect. 

  1. I was gifted numerous baby boy clothes and items from a cousin out of the blue, once she found out I was having a boy 💙

  2. A couple we bought Rin’s kiddie desk from gifted us a ton of baby items and shoes (they also had a baby boy)

  3. I could finally stomach food and was no longer at risk of gestational diabetes

So, not only was I on the way to a healthier lifestyle, but I was moving forward in my career and my marriage. Creating an atmosphere of positivity for my family and a space of healing was the ultimate result of dealing with those losses. It was a major highlight of God's provision.

Though this year was full of loss, God showed me that He was right by my side through it all.

I didn’t have to worry because everything was perfectly placed according to His timeline and His provision is unmatched. I lost my job and Grammy in the same week, then gained a new position and a supportive husband to lean on.

I started to learn how to be joyful through the storm and how to maintain my peace of mind with Him (2 Corinthians 13:11).

As the summer drew to a close, I prayed hard about second income opportunities.

I even thought I would land a position with a faith-based company as a copywriter, but I learned about humility and killing my pride instead. 

We’ve already discussed how your words have power even when we think they're harmless. A small “venting” sesh can block your blessings if you’re not careful. In this instance, I recklessly complained about the tediousness of the company’s application process and how they were just trying to squeeze “free work” out of applicants. I felt I shouldn’t have had to go through so many rounds of interviews. They'd seen my work, I completed their assessment, and we chatted via Zoom…what more did they need?

Then, I complained about how much they were putting applicants through just to lack a competitive salary, and I was in a space of criticism and condescending thoughts. I felt like it was too much work for them to ask of me in the beginning stages of the hiring process. So guess what?

I didn’t get hired 🤣 

God revealed something major to me during this process, and that was to be humble.

To put my pride aside, even if I felt something was tedious or a little too extra.

Thank you for revealing areas of arrogance & pridefulness in my heart. Jesus, who is Your Almighty Son, became a human & DIED for us. He is the epitome of sacrifice & humility. Help me to exude the qualities of servitude, humbleness, and sacrifice in my life. 💗

This experience changed my heart posture towards receiving and pursuing opportunities.

Now granted, there were other aspects of the position that didn’t sit well with me, the main one being that this opportunity wasn’t remote. I wasn’t 100% sold on uprooting my family with a newborn on the way, even though the monetary incentives were there. So it just wasn’t a good fit, and it wasn’t His plan for me.

I was grateful He closed that door because another opened later down the line that was perfect timing and exactly what I needed. God provided clarity on a decision and option I had pursued since mid-July. He forced me to practice patience, and to let go of this nagging sense of urgency and rushed feelings I had towards securing more income.

He forced me to slow down and trust in His timing.

September rolled around and I finally heard back from the opportunity that allowed me to work overnights, gave me the days I needed off for church, and aligned with starting the second week of my maternity leave. He provided a role for me that would not compromise my values, and it was exactly what I asked for.

There is nothing more perfect than God’s gifts (James 1:17) and I’m just happy to be on the receiving end of such love and provision. Keep in mind the timing, I know I keep coming back to that but it’s so wild to me that His timing is literally always right 👏 on 👏 time 👏

Thank you Father. Thank you Jesus 💗 for the opportunity to work overnight 10pm-6am with Wed/Saturdays off 💗 It allows me to continue my church sched & work sched after maternity and your timing is always perfect 🙂 I’m so grateful 💗


It also wasn’t just me that was being shown so much love 💗

He showered our entire family with blessings this year.  My hubby started a new position that covered our budget plus some, we found an amazing daycare for my daughter that is economical and enriching,  and we had a plan that felt more aligned with His plan than ever before.

So while 2023 may have been trying times, keep in mind that there is opportunity in our weakness for God to make moves we’d never thought could happen in our lives (2 Corinthians 12:9). We just need to call on Him. 

As the year draws to a close, my biggest answered prayer was starting this blog.

I also received another copywriting opportunity from the Lord to advance my career. This time with no searching of my own.

My prayer for you is that you reflect on the ways God’s timing is perfect in your life. What are some prayers He's answered for you?

“The Lord is not slow in keeping his promise…Instead, he is patient with you” 2 Peter 3:9 (NIV)

🗣 Speak this affirmation when you want to see the blessings in your life.

Tune in to my blog every week for faith-based content!

© Keep It SIMPLE | CourCollabs, 2024