If we were having a {Coffee Date!}

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Hey y’all! I’m so happy to be back with Jenna + Jenna today spilling my heart over coffee.. & this here blog! I hope that you all have enjoyed your week, the good & the bad that life brings along. Coffee makes everything better, right? Which is why this Coffee Date Link Up is one of my faves!

If we were having coffee, I would take you to this new and modernly rustic local coffee shop where I live. I would order a venti-sized pumpkin flavored latte with extra cinnamon.  I would tell you about all the highs + lows in my life & laugh about this vlog I did last night with some other lovely bloggers…

 

I would probably let you in on these little not-so-secrets:

+ I’m exhausted. And this blog is getting the bad end of the deal. I’m so thankful for  a job but it has totally turned my normal routine & schedule upside down. But, on the bright side…. that just means I am learning to be more organized. And that will be good for me.

+ Oh, I would get excited & tell you about how I am in the process of revamping my entire blog & I would show you pictures of the amazing blog design I am waiting for.. did someone say coral and teal? Eeee!

+ After asking how your week has been, I would tell you in a high pitched tone that my mom, brother, & sister are coming into town for the day & I am SO excited to see them after two weeks of being here at home. We’re going to eat lots of food and try not to spend so much $$ at Target.

+ My hubby & I are going to Canada next week for a mini-getaway and I would ask you… have you ever been to Canada?! Montreal to be exact. I hear they have maple syrup & tons of resturants, ay!

+ Last but certainly not least, I would tell you that God is good. And faithful. Oh, and trustworthy. He has given me strength when I thought I couldn’t go on. He has given me peace when my mind has been in some bad places. He has given me joy in trials. I would pray with & for you and ask if we can get a refill on those lattes?!?!

How have you been, lately? And what would you let me in on if we were having coffee right now?! You are loved, lady!

-Katie

Also linking up with:

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IMG_6444.JPG Can’t forget the Faith and Fellowship Blog Hop!

The Golden VLOG! Volume 1 – Intro!

Hey y’all! I am so glad that you are here! So, I’m SUPER excited to be linking up with Faith from Mrs. G and the Artist for her very awesome & first edition of The Golden Vlog! It’s just a fun way to grow in community with other bloggers & to share with the world who we are & what we do! I hope you enjoy my awkwardness & hope you don’t mind my rambling too much! Don’t you just love this hilarious thumbnail below?! HA! Oh my…

 

 

 

{check out this link if you aren’t able to view that one: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=c4BkuzYWE5Y }

I hope you enjoyed it! Now you know a little bit more about me! Hopefully you were able to stick it out until the end! Shew, you must really love me then 😉 See y’all on the flip side!

(do people even say that anymore?!)

You are loved!

Katie

Wednesday’s Words {Worth & Identity}

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Yesterday, I broke a kitchen glass. Oh, and I also washed my husband’s shoe with his work clothes. HOW DO YOU WASH A SHOE?! Only I would know. Apparently. This is what happens when I wake up and go straight to the laundry room without putting in my contacts or getting a cup of coffee down first. This morning, I forgot to add a vital part to our Keurig coffee maker which turned my nice hot cup of coffee into a murky cup of water and no time to make another cup… on my 5 AM work day. Needless to say, I’m not perfect. Surprise, surprise. Later that evening while my husband and I were getting ready for our double date, I asked him if he thought I was a good wife or not. “Of course, you’re the best.”

I am a wife but my identity and worth isn’t found in that vital & important role. I am a sister, daughter, & friend but my worth doesn’t depend on how “good” of a friend or sister or daughter I am. I am a nanny and a youth leader but my identity isn’t based on those roles. I am the worst of sinners and I tend to be negative at times but those things do not define me.

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Who I am, the essence of Katie, is found in Someone greater than I could ever be. My worth is found in Jesus Christ. HE makes me holy, righteous, & beautiful. He is the One who gives me worth, identity, and purpose. And the amazing part? I did nothing to deserve or earn it.

“For we ourselves were once foolish, disobedient, led astray, slaves to various passions and pleasures, passing our days in malice and envy, hated by others and hating one another. But when the goodness and loving kindness of God our Savior appeared, he saved us, not because of works done by us in righteousness, but according to his own mercy, by the washing of regeneration and renewal of the Holy Spirit, whom he poured out on us richly through Jesus Christ our Savior, so that being justified by his grace we might become heirs according to the hope of eternal life..” Titus 3:3-7

Jesus Christ saved me and you.. not because of works done by me in righteousness but according to His own mercy.

Because of His love for me, I have purpose and worth.

I can rest in that love that gives me identity. I am no longer my own. I was bought by a price by Jesus who paid the price for my sin. My worth is found in what Christ did on the cross. He made me alive by dying for my sin and then conquering it when He arose from that grave. With that declaration of an empty tomb, my soul came alive.

My identity? Yes, I am a wife, sister, daughter, leader, friend.. But because I was saved by God’s great mercy, I am now…

alive eternally & dead to sin {Romans 6:11}

holy {Hebrews 10:10}

righteous {Romans 4:5}

blameless {1 Corinthians 1:8}

free {Galatians 5:1}

whole {Colossians 2:10}

not condemned {Romans 8:1}

LOVED {Romans 8:35}

And YOU are loved!

-Katie

Today, I am linking up with Jenni & Martha Kate again for Wednesday’s Words! Also, this was my 200th blog post! Awesome!

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Also linking up with The Artsy Cajun with..

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And Simple Moments Stick

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Wednesday’s Words {Intro to Me!}

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Hey Y’all! I’m so glad that you stopped by. I’m currently sitting on my back porch with a bowl of cotton candy ice cream while my favorite pup is underneath me with her own bowl of peanut butter. It’s a good day. I’m so excited to start this new link up with Jenni from Frankly My Dear & other sweet blogging girls for a good dose of encouragement and community! It’s a brand new community starting TODAY & it’s the perfect replacement for my Wifey Wear Wednesdays I believe!

This week, we were asked to share a little about ourselves & what God is doing in our lives! So, let’s do this.

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I’m Katie. I have a huge love for Jesus, my Savior & BFF, and I daily strive to life my life for Him in all aspects.  A year ago, I was overly blessed and full of JOY to marry the man of my dreams. His name is Joe and he is utterly perfect for me. I still pinch myself at times to make sure this isn’t all a dream. He is romantic, tall and handsome, and takes me on trips all over this green earth. We are super-duper in love and you would quickly learn that if ever you were around us for at least two minutes. He is the most selfless, wise, hilarious, caring, & faithful man I know. He is my joy. We live in a cute house in a fun city and we serve at our local church home & eat way too much good food. Oh, and we also have a Siberian Husky whom we adore & call our child.

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I have a slightly obsessive love for hot tea, coffee, sunshine, Mexican food, spending time early in the morning in the Word, laughing, & reading books. I love Jesus, my big family, & my friends who are as dear as family. I just accepted a job as a nanny during the week after being a SAHW for the first year of our marriage. One day I will write about all the things that I learned from that season of life. I also adore this blog space. The community that it possesses is irreplaceable. I am in the process of growing my blog and I just love meeting new ladies who love Jesus & adore coffee as much as I do. It’s such an awesome thing. I started this blog almost two years ago while sitting in my formerly favorite coffee shop back in my hometown. I have a huge heart and passion with sharing Jesus’ love with everyone I meet. With that passion for Him and a passion to write since I was young, God led me to start this blog over a hot cup of African Sunset Red Tea. He knows the way to my heart. You can read way more in-depth of what and how He spoke to me about this blog here.

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God has been showing me what it looks like to truly follow and live completely for Him. Honestly, I am growing {being stretched} more right now than I ever have in my walk with Christ. He is teaching my husband and I what it looks like to truly die to self and live for Christ even when it’s hard and complicated. I am slowly learning that He is worth it. In my personal life, God is teaching me to open my hands and let Him have the control, the insecurity, and the fear that I have been clinging onto for years and years. He is teaching me that opening my hands means that I am trusting Him for who He is.. GOD. I can’t play God anymore by trying to be in complete control over my life and the people in it. Trust, faith, believing. Surrender. That’s what I’m learning.

Oh, and did I mention that I love chatting with you so let me know that you stopped by! See ya tomorrow dearies for our Romans Summer Bible Study! We’re going over chapter 14.. here’s a sneak peek.. freedom & love!.. you know it will be good!

You are loved!

Katie

Summer Bible Study: Romans // Ch. 13

HEY! I’m so glad that you are back! I can’t wait to dig into scripture with you. If you have never joined us before, we are on chapter 13 of our Romans summer bible study. There are only a few more chapters left but it isn’t too late to hang out with us today! If you missed Romans 12, you can check it out here! This journey through Romans has grown me to love being in His Word. It’s such a comforting joy to relish in His truth. I pray that you & I would have a greater desire to study and truly live out what we learn from Him in His Word. Let’s jump right in!!

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Romans 13: 1-7

What is this passage saying?

Paul is instructing his readers to submit to authority. Although Paul seems to focus more on the government side of the authority, we can apply his words to any authority we may have in our lives. I remember when I was a teenager {Lord, help us all} and like any 14-year-old, I didn’t have much respect for my parents, much less any other higher-ups. Without getting into all of the stories of doorslamming, yelling, and eye-rolling… I did not have the attitude of submission. Most people don’t. And that’s exactly why God places that word, submission, all throughout scripture. In God’s eyes, when we submit to our parents, our boss, our teachers, or any other “authority figure” in our lives, we are really submitting to God. When government seems crooked, our boss is a jerk, or our teachers & parents are unfair, we are called to respond in a respectful and loving way.

How can I practically apply this truth in my life?

Let’s ask God for His perspective on this subject. As hard as it is, this glorifies God. There is no higher than God and we can rest in that fact. God Himself has appointed the rulers in this world for His reasons. His ways are higher than our ways and His thoughts are higher than our thoughts. {Isaiah 558-9} We can trust that God is the only One to judge and He is in control of all things and people, including authority.

Romans 13:8-10

What is this passage saying?

Paul goes on to speak about LOVE. At the end of verse 7, Paul tells us that if we owe someone something, we ought to pay them back no matter if it is taxes or honor. He then goes on to say something amazing. “Let no debt remain outstanding, except the continuing debt to love one another” We are called to love one another above all other things. Respect, submission, honor… all of those things stem from the love that we should have for one another.

How can I practically apply this truth in my life?

Before we can truly love anyone, we must know God. Did you know that?! Those aren’t just my words, either. God Himself speaks through John and tells us this in 1 John chapter 4:

“Dear friends, let us love one another, for love comes from God. Everyone who loves has been born of God and knows God.  Whoever does not love does not know God, because God is love. This is how God showed his love among us: He sent his one and only Son into the world that we might live through him. This is love: not that we loved God, but that he loved us and sent his Son as an atoning sacrifice for our sins.  Dear friends, since God so loved us, we also ought to love one another. No one has ever seen God; but if we love one another, God lives in us and his love is made complete in us.”

Loving others is what God has called us to do. Period. How are you loving others? How are you loving your spouse, your children, your family, your friends, your coworkers, your actual neighbors, and even complete strangers?

Loving someone means putting their needs above your own.

Love is knowing God, experiencing His love, & sharing His love with others.

How are you loving?

Romans 13:11-14

What is this passage saying?

I picture Paul getting really excited while He is talking about love and how love is the fulfillment of all the commands from God. Then, He starts to quiet down and starts to talk s-l-o-w-l-y because He REALLY wants us to hear these next few lines. Picture a tall dude named Paul standing in front of you and a crowd of people. You know that His Words are actually God-breathed and then He says this…

“And do this, understanding the present time: The hour has already come for you to wake up from your slumber, because our salvation is nearer now than when we first believed. 12 The night is nearly over; the day is almost here. So let us put aside the deeds of darkness and put on the armor of light.

…and all is quiet before he screams…

WAKE UP!

Wake up. Friend, fellow sibling in the faith, we are almost out of time. This life we are living in simply a vapor. We are here today and gone tomorrow. Are we aimlessly going through life, like we are halfway sleeping? Eat. Sleep. Work. Play. Repeat. We do not have time for simply this! God put us on this earth and called us His own not so we could indulge in our desires, sinful & fleshly. No. He created us for ONE PURPOSE: to glorify Him. We already learned that by loving others, we can glorify Him. Another way? By putting aside, throwing off, the deeds of darkness (sinful things) and putting on the armor of LIGHT.

It’s time we stop flirting with sin. It’s time to destroy it. To shine His light ALL OVER this world & it’s darkness.

Paul lays it out for us pretty clear:

“Let us behave decently, as in the daytime, not in carousing and drunkenness, not in sexual immorality and debauchery, not in dissension and jealousy. Rather, clothe yourselves with the Lord Jesus Christ, and do not think about how to gratify the desires of the flesh

This is radical, my friend. Because all of those fans of Jesus think it’s perfectly fine to be wallowing in their sexual immorality and jealousy and drunkenness and straight up sin. God has given you one purpose, and that purpose has nothing to do with your own self. It’s all about our lives and our will being handed over, being traded with God’s…. with love, selflessness, with joy unspeakable, hope, with JESUS.

How can I practically apply these truths to my life?

Spend time with God. Pray to Him, talk to Him, listen for Him. Sing to Him, cry out to Him, whisper to Him. Ask Him questions.

All of this is done in vain if we do not know Him. Loving others is impossible without knowing God’s love. The ability to put our sin to death is impossible without Jesus’ blood covering it.

“Submit yourselves therefore to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you.  Draw near to God, and he will draw near to you. Cleanse your hands, you sinners, and purify your hearts, you double-minded.  Be wretched and mourn and weep. Let your laughter be turned to mourning and your joy to gloom.  Humble yourselves before the Lord, and he will exalt you.” Those verses from James 4 changed my life forever. God spoke those words to me when I was a rebellious 18-year-old searching for purpose when my world was falling apart. He spoke truth, conviction, and hope into my soul that night. I haven’t been the same since. He can change you too. Be willing. And be ready to have your world turned upside down. When He speaks to the dead, life & beauty rises. He has a purpose for you. Glorify Him. He is worth it.

Summer Bible Study: Romans // TEN

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Hey there! Have you enjoyed studying Romans? I sure have! God has shown me many different things about what righteousness and faith really look like. More than that though, I feel as if I am in a season of the testing of my faith right now. So many things are bidding my action to faith and it has been a beautiful mess learning to have faith in all things, good & bad. I love that God doesn’t leave us alone to deal with our problems. He is with us and speaks right to us with His Word and I’m thankful that He has been doing just that while studying Romans. He is teaching me to truly live out what I study even if I fall a thousand times in the process. What has God been teaching, showing, or challenging you with through the study of Romans? Let me know in the comment section below!

Today, we are in Romans 10; a short yet powerful chapter of salvation for all people.

 

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Romans 10:1-4

What is this passage saying?

Paul is expressing that his heart’s desire and prayer to God is that the Jews who were placing their faith and hope for salvation in their works would come to know Christ, be saved. He says that they have that zeal yet they are ignorant of the true salvation that Christ bestows. The Jews that Paul is talking about were so focused on doing good works in order to become righteous, right before God. They didn’t accept the truth that Jesus had just paid their debt in full on the cross. Like we have talked about so often in the former chapters, that is true faith, believing in Him who paid our ransom for sin and made us righteous through His blood.

How can we practically apply these truths to my life?

Zeal, or passion, and true knowledge of salvation go hand in hand in knowing God and serving Him. We can’t simply have passion without knowing anything about Jesus because that just makes like any other person without Jesus. We can’t only have knowledge since passion is what moves us to desire God. Head knowledge doesn’t mean salvation. You have to have the heart behind it. You must be moved {zeal for God} to repentance {knowledge of your sin & Christ’s forgiveness}. Passion & wisdom, zeal and knowledge. They go hand in hand!

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Romans 10:5-13

What is this passage saying?

Paul is quoting Moses from back in the OT {Leviticus to be exact} about how right standing before God is impossible if based only on the law. “To hope for a righteousness based on obedience to the law requires perfect conformity in every detail–an utter impossibility.” In verses six and seven, Paul speaks of righteousness by faith as if it were a person asking a question which is actually a quote from Deuteronomy 30. Isn’t he a pretty cool writer? “Do not say in your heart, “who will go into heaven?” that is, to bring Christ down or, “who will go down to the abyss?” that is to bring Christ up from the dead. On the contrary, what does it say? The message is near you, in your mouth and in your heart.”    He is meaning… you do not have to go on a soul-searching adventure to find salvation, Christ. It is right here. Right in front of your face. It has clearly been revealed by God to man through His Word. It is by faith alone that you are saved.

How can I practically apply these truth to my life?

This is the message of faith, the gospel, the salvation of mankind: if you confess with your mouth, “Jesus is Lord”, and believe with your heart that God raised Him from the dead, you will be saved. {v. 9} Salvation is by faith in Jesus alone. You cannot earn your way to new life, freedom from sin, and eternity with Jesus. You can only have faith in Him for those things. Have you repented of your sin and asked for forgiveness? Do you really believe? Salvation is more than words. It’s a total giving away of your self to Jesus. It’s confessing that Jesus is Master over your life and you choose to give away your rights to Him. That’s what it means to confess that Jesus is Lord. It’s a way of life. It’s a daily pick-up-your-cross-and-follow-Jesus kind of decision.

One believes with the heart, resulting in righteousness, and one confesses with the mouth, resulting in salvation.” {Rom. 10:10}

This salvation is available for all people. The white, the black, the rich, the poor, the needy, the prideful. All ages, all races. God is holding out in Hand for all of mankind.

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Romans 10:14-21

What is this passage saying?

God uses people, you & me, to make His name known to all the earth. There must be messengers for Christ going to the lost and unbelieving. Without messengers, people won’t hear. And those people hearing must be paying attention and believe. We, mankind are just like Israel. We are God’s children, chosen and loved. Yet, we continually choose our own way. We choose our own way. Some ears are bent on not listening. The point Paul is making is that we are all disobedient, whether we “look” good on the outside or not. Jew or Gentile, we are all in need of Christ.

How can I practically apply these passages to my life?

Thankfully, God is in control and we are not. He does the sending, the convicting, and the heart-changing. But as Christ followers, we have responsibility. Jesus has called each one of us out of the boat, out of our comfort zones, out of the norm to take the message of salvation to the ends of the earth. How are you on mission in your life for Christ?

 Then Jesus came to them and said, “All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you. And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age.” {Matthew 28:18-20}

When I was younger, I remember someone in my church asking a question that has stuck in my heart through all those years.

“Who is your one?”

We need to have at least one person in our life who we are doing life with, leading them to the Lord we follow. There doesn’t have to be anything fancy or formal. Just an intentional relationship where Jesus is the center and purpose. We are all called to lead others to Christ and you can do just that without going across the ocean to a third world country. Get out a piece of paper and start writing down people who come to your mind. Is it a family member, a neighbor, coworker, the girl in your class, a fellow new-mom, a church friend?

Let me ask you, who is your one? Your two, your three? Are you spreading the love of Christ?

“How beautiful are the feet of those who bring good news!” Romans 10:15b

You are loved

-Katie

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/pages/Hot-Tea-And-The-Empty-Seat/481525375276865

 

Coffee Break // when you want to give up

The Lord is my light and my salvation; whom shall I fear? The Lord is the stronghold of my life; of whom shall I be afraid?

One thing have I asked of the Lord, that will I seek after: that I may dwell in the house of the Lord all the days of my life, to gaze upon the beauty of the Lord and to inquire in his temple.

I believe that I shall look upon the goodness of the Lord in the land of the living! Wait for the Lord; be strong, and let your heart take courage; wait for the Lord!

 ‭Psalm‬ ‭27‬:‭1, 4, 13-14‬ ESV

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There are people in my life going through heart breaks, health issues, job loss, and confusion. I have known hopelessness, sleepless nights, & worry.

Some say life stops for no one and but I say that we have a Great Father & Protector who would stop time to save us.

Realize that God is on your side. The Lord is your Light in the darkness, your salvation when you feel like giving up. He is the one and only one who can guard your life and protect you with His right hand.

Have faith. Keep praying. Continue to trust.

Even when you can’t see the light. Even when you have been praying for years. Even when you want to give up.

My husband has had a tough month at work. While is it easy and natural to want to give up and think that God mustn’t care that we are struggling, our faith in God in these hard times is vital. If we had faith in God when everything was going great, is that really faith at all? We must have faith that God will work all things out for the good of those who love Him. His Word proclaims that truth.

“And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose.”

-Romans 8:28

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Father, help me to have faith in you. True, unwaivering, undoubting faith. Please help all of your children who are struggling to find peace and hope. Lead them beside still waters, comfort their hearts. I pray for all of your children who are not struggling right now. I pray that their faith will be increased in this season so that when storms do come, they will stand strong through faith in You. You are so good & gracious. Amen.

You are loved

-Katie

**If you want to link up with Hot Tea and the Empty Seat’s Coffee Break Pick Me Ups {every other Friday}, upload this below pic to your post {a psalm with some encouraging words} & be sure to link back to Hot Tea and the Empty Seat’s blog! { http://www.hotteaandtheemptyseat.com } Then, comment below to let me know that you are linking up! Can’t wait to hear from you, friend!  

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