September has come, sweeping the first brave leaves from the tips of trees and heaving the scent of an approaching harvest into the gold-tinged air. Let’s gather gifts like a kid picking new pencils for the school year. As redemption seeps through the foam on every beverage in sight, infusing warmth into the deepest places of our hearts, we’re invited to join the blessing of offering ourselves to one another in grace and truth. I suspect Jesus has a special affection for surprising His people during this season. Shall we seek Him together?
Some September gifts to point you toward
Art: Beloved Society
I absolutely fell in love with these beauties the first time I saw them. Beth designs a vast array of Jesus-hearted women in a way that just shouts happy, allowing for imagination and accessibility while prompting simple pleasure in God’s workmanship. Want to shop her stuff? Between the totes and stickers and mugs and art prints and just about anything else you could wish for, I guarantee you’ll find a treasure worth keeping. You can also grab tons of ideas on how to use her creative ladies in Bible study and journaling at Illustrated Faith.
Blog Post: What to Do When Your Story Isn’t Neat and Tidy by Ashley Hales
Our culture gravitates to before and after shots, but have you been feeling the discomfort (to put it gently) of the in-between? As much as we would love to live in the happily ever after right now, our plot lines are often mingled with pain. Ashley compassionately explains the daily rhythm of deaths and resurrections (because she’s walked through them, too). She knows how to “sit in the pain of unknowing” and calls us to awaken to the promises of a good God walking out our stories with us.
Believe it or not, I was tipped off about this fun resource—available on both iOS and Android—by a speaker at a major women’s conference. The basic idea is that you can use any picture on your camera roll (or one of their free images, which are pretty much all Pinterest-worthy) and add trendy text in a variety of styles and fonts (my favorites right now are Crisp Apple and September Issue). Hello, adorable customized wallpaper that helps me memorize Scripture!
Video: Navigating Ambiguity
Stanford Design School asked students their thoughts on the topic, and the responses are really interesting. Although the participants point to what they learned through a class setting, believers can relate through the local church. Reality typically operates much more in a grey area than in terms of black and white, and we can choose to embrace the opportunity to lean into God and His family, or we can rail against it.
Decluttering Plan: 52 Weeks to an Organized Home
In my mind, September is the perfect chance to bust some clutter that has built up over the long, lazy days of summer. This plan, which my mom and I are working through together (at our own pace, because life), breaks up what might easily seem an overwhelming task into completely doable bites over the course of a year. And we’re not just talking about surface-level change, either. Challenges are designed to help create order and efficiency from the bottom up. Routines, digital information, and email all need to be dealt with (along with more obvious things like the craft stuff piled high and that closet you’re afraid to open). Tally ho!