The design of my Heart comes from a very deep and personal journey I have been on after losing my little 10-year-old sister from a very brief and tragic battle with Leukemia. Jordyn had a beautiful soul that was unique to her. She was funny, sweet, joyful, and humble. She was so loving and kind to those around her. I loved her caring heart that was expressed frequently throughout her day. Her attitude and actions influence me to become who I truly am and to be a light for others. There are no words to describe how much I miss her.
Although I would do anything to bring her back, there was nothing I could do. I started to talk to God about my feelings and that is what started this journey I have been on.
I read a verse that talks about what it is like in heaven and about a beautiful river that flows from God: “Then the angel showed me the river of the water of life, pure as crystal, flowing from the throne of God and of the Lamb…” (Revelation 22:1) The following verses continue to describe how beautiful heaven is and then ends with an invitation from Jesus to come to this river for healing, for peace, for whatever it is we need.
I closed my eyes and imagined this beautiful place. What at first seemed so very far away began to come closer as I realized that through my faith in Jesus he brings his presence into my heart. It was there I felt him ask me to come on a journey with him.
I began to use a creative process to document and process what I was feeling and discovering, which led to the creation of my heart design. This has become very meaningful to me as it is a visual reminder of the many lessons that have helped me on my journey.
For a year I have been on a journey with Jesus that started at the river where we talked about a lot of things and he began to fill my heart with his spirit. He then invited me to walk with him and we started to walk alongside the river and eventually start the difficult deeper process of climbing the mountain. The journey was so big, but I took it one step at a time. Recently I have gotten to the top of the mountain. Here at the top of the mountain I feel God is reminding me of the many things that have helped me on my journey so far. I am also spending time thinking about how I can be a light for other girls.
The first thing I see is a glorious sunrise casting light on the mountain peaks. I feel the sun will always remind me of Jesus, the Son of God. Every morning I look forward to the sun coming out and giving a fresh start to a new day. During my journey I went through many different struggles and sometimes weather would affect my emotions. Whenever I would be in the sun I felt a sense of peace come over my sadness. Though the sadness of losing my sister never goes away, the sun reminds me of the goodness in life and opens my heart to the Lord.
The next thing I see is a beautiful blue river. I feel the Holy Spirit represents the river that flows down from the top of the mountain. During my journey I walked along a path that followed the river. The sound of the trickling water comforted my soul as the Holy Spirit flowed like water into the cracks and crevices of my heart to bring healing and peace. At times the path may even stray from the river, but the river is still there no matter where I go. I feel like the Holy Spirit is a good friend, always calling me back, because the river will provide life for my soul.
Lastly, I see the most beautiful and magnificent mountain range. I feel the mountains represent God, our Father. There is a mystery to God and many things still to discover and search out. I may leave God in my shadows to pursue something that I want, but God is always there for me, waiting for me to pursue something with him. The mountains call out to me. He invites me to come and explore and discover new things in my faith. When I do, he gives me a new perspective to help me continue on in my journey.
When the comfort of the sun, the healing waters of the river, and call of the mountains all come together, they remind me of the many experiences that have molded me into who I am as a daughter of God. They also fill my heart with his presence and help me get through difficult days.
The Bible says that God bestows on each of us a Crown of Beauty. This is also very meaningful to me and many of the other girls who are part of our organization, A Pearl for Every Girl. “P.E.A.R.LS.” represents the process we go through on our spiritual growth journey: Purified. Empowered. Anointed. Rooted. And filled with Life to Shine for others. The crown represents our identity as a daughter of God.
If you are ever experiencing a difficult time, or feel like pieces of your life are missing, or feel like waves of fear are washing over you…my prayer for you flows from these three verses that have helped me:
My favorite verse since I was little has been Psalm 32:7, “You are my hiding place; you will protect me from trouble and surround me with songs of deliverance.” During hard times, remember that God is the rock you can always lean on for support. When you have a relationship with God, he reveals a hope to us that gives us a sense of security and peace.
“Now may the God of Peace himself sanctify you completely.” (1 Thessalonians 5:23) My prayer is that you find your identity in God and not in the difficult times you go through and that the peace of God will wash over you and comfort you no matter what you are experiencing.
Lastly, remember that each person has a completely different story. Love each other and do not tear each other down, because you never know what is going on in someone’s heart. When your heart feels broken, know that God’s love will help fill it up and heal the cracks within it. “May your unfailing love rest upon us, O Lord.” (Psalm 33:22)
I hope that as you open your own heart to the Lord you will experience the comfort of the sun, the healing waters of the river, and a desire to explore the mountains before you. It doesn’t mean your journey will be easy, but I believe he will create something more beautiful than you ever thought was capable. “Whoever believes in me, as the Scripture has said, ‘Out of his heart will flow rivers of living water.’” John 7:38
The photo below shows how I have used the process of art and creativity on my journey and how these creations have made their way onto T-shirts, Stickers, Greeting Cards and Journals to help raise funds for providing special gift bags to encourage young children going through difficult treatments in Children’s Hospitals across the county.
SUNSHINE SESSIONS FOR GIRLS AT J GIRL RANCH!
Last year while I was having my own personal prayer time I felt like God was putting on my heart to do something special to help young girls in our community learn how to connect with God and grow in their relationship with Him. This summer we are hosting three unique sessions. Read more about this HERE.
*the proceeds from the small fee for the events will go toward shining for children in the hospital, read below for more details.
SHINE for CHILDREN at RADY CHILDREN’S HOSPITAL in SAN DIEGO, CA!
In 2017 I had a dream to create gift bags for children in the hospital. It broke my heart watching my sweet little sister have to go through such a very difficult experience and I wanted to do something to help encourage other girls who are going through a similar experience. I wanted to do something to help cheer them up and give them something inspiring to do as they were in their beds for prolonged periods of time.
In 2018 I made my first connection with a Children's Hospital in San Diego, CA called Rady Children's Hospital. I have already been able to provide a beautiful gift bag filled with special items for all the girls ages 4-18 who are going through chemotherapy for cancer treatments. They loved the bags so much and it filled my heart that I was able to do something that helped them on their very difficult journey.
I am filling each bag with about $200 worth of gifts including creative supplies, a beautiful journal, a cozy blanket with inspiring words, a t-shirt I designed, a cup of courage mug and more. I also partnered with a San Diego based company, Pura Vida, to create a special bracelet I designed with a message of hope I wrote for each girl. I am also including a new line of greeting cards I have created which I am also selling in boutiques, grocery stores, gift shop and resort shops to try and raise funds for providing more bags. (through Ahava River greeting cards).
I started to think about what else I could put in the next round of bags. I decided to spend my summer creating an activity book filled with pages the girls can color and have little activities to do that will cheer them up and give them something inspiring to think about. The process of creating and using color is a very healing experience so I wanted to make something special that flowed from my heart and filled with inspiring words and messages to encourage the children.
We hope to publish this sometime in the Fall of 2018.
Thank you for taking time to read about my mission to encourage children. I hope you will consider joining me. I would like to shine for as many children as we can!