Thursday, 29 January 2015

The assurance of victory

“Get out of your country,

From your family
And from your father’s house,
To a land that I will show you.
I will make you a great nation;
I will bless you
And make your name great;
And you shall be a blessing.

Genesis 12:1-2

When God called Abram to leave his homeland and his family, He assured that He would bless him, that He would be with him.

Whenever God calls us for the sacrifice, for the challenges and even for the unknown, He also does the same to us. He assures us that He will be with us and He will honour our decision

So there is nothing to fear. All we need to do is to obey, just like Abram did.

In this fast, God also guarantees the victory to us. Do whatever God is asking of you and don't doubt at any moment that the greatest of the blessings are already coming your way.

You will become the blessing, just like Abram did!

See you tomorrow!

Tuesday, 27 January 2015

Secret #9: Enemy No. 1 for Single Women

Anxiety - the number one enemy for single women.

Sadly to say but I already saw some ladies who were once in faith but they let themselves fall because they entertained anxiety and started taking care of their love life with their own hands. Those who are still with us, I advice you to NEVER FOLLOW THEIR FOOTSTEPS! Never ever exchange GOD for anything or anyone and keep Him in the first place in your life at all times!

Perhaps you are a person who fights for your love life and you think that when you are attending the Therapy of Love meetings, you see more ladies than men... but dear friend, do not look at what your physical eyes could see!!!! So do not get frustrated! Just keep on doing your part and for sure that God will do His! Who knows that person is being prepared yet or he is not in the country where you are?! Always TRUST GOD!

Ah, in addition to the tips that Mrs. Nanda gave in the book, if you have not done it yet, but start attending the Friday services also, we do not know but sometimes there are evil spirits trying to work and block or destroy your love life, use your faith and keep fighting! Anxiety is also from the evil one, so tying it up is the best way to fight against it!

I remember that my husband came to my life in a time that I was not worrying about my love life. I was not praying to God for a man to be with for the rest of my life like I used to but it was the time that he came. When I received the Holy Spirit, I also surrendered to God my future and was not worried to be single... Anyways, everything happened smoothly between my husband and I during our dating period until we got married, but every day, I was always on a self-check and I kept asking myself:

"Why am I doing this?"
"Why do I want to serve?"
"Why do I want to be in Godllywood?"
"Why do I want to be an assistant?"
"Why do I want to give my best?"

And inside of me, I made sure that the reason was not "because I want to marry the Pastor" NOOO! It was never like that! My reason was because I am keeping the vow that I made with God since I surrendered my whole life to Him (which I am keeping up to now), and because I want to give glory to His Name.

Dear single friends.... I have a question for you:

"Why do you want to get married?"

It is a very important point to check on ourselves what is our motive...
If you want to get married because "you want to be happy", I'm sorry to tell you that you are hoping for a wrong reason... and you can even receive the blessing and get married, but your everlasting happiness may be at sake.

Many got married for this reason and how many times we saw that instead of having a "happily ever after", their marriage became "crying all the days of their lives"? Because the marriage "didn't work out" or one party betrayed the other or many other reasons...

Don't get married for selfish reasons. Perhaps you might check and change your intentions, below are only some examples:

I want to get married because...
"I want to glorify and honor God through my marriage!"
"To be an example to other ladies that keeping myself pure until marriage is the best choice"
"To prove to them that GOD is faithful to fulfill His promises"
"To prove that God never forsake those who are faithful to Him"

And kindly keep this passage:

"An inheritance obtained too early in life is not a blessing in the end." Proverbs 20:21 (NLT)

In other words, a blessing received in the wrong time could be a burden or a curse... so never be anxious regarding your marriage! God does not ignore you, He is at work on your love life, be sure of that!

PS. To our single friends... I was moved to make a purpose - to fight together with you for your love life through CHAIN OF PRAYER... if you want to join us in this purpose, kindly leave your comment below.

Many kisses, remain in faith!

Jessica Shigeoka

DISCLAIMER: The "40 Secrets for the Single Woman" is a book written by Mrs. Nanda Bezerra. I did not write the 40 Secrets, what I am writing in this blog are my own experiences and how I identified myself with each Secret found in Mrs. Nanda's book. :) Find out more about it here.

Tuesday, 20 January 2015

Secret #8: The Baggage

Imagine that you need to travel by plane, and you are carrying a very heavy bag without rollers, and need to walk a lot in the airports...  It is so inconvenient and tiring, right? Not to mention that you are bumping the people around you on the aisle of the plane while carrying your big bag, you also walk slowly, and it even takes all your energy!

It is very much the same when we are carrying a lot of sentimental baggage! It makes us stuck, it is hard for us to move forward, and we can even affect the people around us by being an unpleasant person to be with...

Sentimental baggage are like the following:
- living in the past
- depression
- regrets
- bad memories
- bitterness
- failures
- traumas
- fears
- disappointments
- grudges
- complexes
- betrayal
- doubts
... or  anything that puts us down or feelings that distracts us a lot.

Most of the time, we do not notice how these baggages are affecting us and the people around us.
When a man and a woman decide to get married and live together, only then they will know who they truly are. Each one is carrying their own baggage - from their past, their mentality, their family, or their background that are very different from each other.

This is what happened with me and my husband... When we were dating, we spoke with each other A LOT, in order to get to know each other better.

I had my past, I had a family background that was very different from his. My husband grew up in a Christian family, so he had his parents as role models... My parents did their best to raise us, and I believe that they could have done for us much better if they were also enlightened by the Word of God in our younger days. And the fact that we are coming from different cultures - him, as a Brazilian-Japanese and I am a Filipina.

My husband and I spoke about almost everything when we were dating! I opened to him my past, my flaws, my weaknesses, my culture, my dreams, no secrets at all! And he did the same... So, we understood each other much better.

I learned that TALKING and hiding no secrets between couples is a big help to avoid these baggage from affecting your relationship.

For example, sometimes a person is always jealous, perhaps because she had an experience that she was betrayed in the past... Or sometimes a person is easily affected by the words she hears, maybe because she has a very low self-esteem... Or sometimes a person does not know how to show love, perhaps because s/he never experienced love at home... And the people around her do not understand why she is reacting in certain ways, because she is carrying baggage that no one knows about.

First of all, we need to make a DECISION and use our FAITH that we will no longer carry these baggage inside of us anymore.

(If it is something too deep or too much for you to handle, it could help a lot if you could talk to someone about it, someone you know that could help you out and I suggest that you talk to the servants of God...)

Dear friend, we are still in January, you can still make a fresh start!

When I entered this year of 2015, there are many things in me that I decided to leave behind in 2014... Those extra-luggage that I had been carrying, reasons why I was not able to do things how I was supposed to - such as insecurities, immaturity... everything that hinders me from reaching my goals.

And by the way, leaving behind our baggage would not only help us to keep a healthy relationship, but it also plays a big role on our salvation!

For the one who is also carrying a lot of luggage can not enter into the kingdom of heaven!

"Make every effort to enter through the narrow door, because many, I tell you, will try to enter and will not be able to." Luke 13:24

Jessica Shigeoka

DISCLAIMER: The "40 Secrets for the Single Woman" is a book written by Mrs. Nanda Bezerra. I did not write the 40 Secrets, what I am writing in this blog are my own experiences and how I identified myself with each Secret found in Mrs. Nanda's book. :) Find out more about it here.

Tuesday, 13 January 2015

Secret #7: Pretty Woman

Did you know that words have spirit?

Have you noticed your reaction when you hear a compliment about yourself? How about when you hear negative words? Did you notice a difference on your feelings? One word can either make us happy, excited, sad, angry, hopeful or hopeless, am I right?

Words are so powerful - we often hear that quote saying that words can either make you or break you. This is the reason why we must be very careful about the words that we speak, think many times before we let go of our words!

Throughout my life, I heard many people saying that words hurt more than a punch on the face... because we never forget words and it is something engraved in the heart forever. (I say, only if you allow them to...) Words can really affect us, whether it is a comment about our appearance, our work, our character, what we do for a living or even what we believe in...

I was also a person who used to allow myself to be affected by the words that I hear about me... I used to see myself as someone who is pretty on the outside but rotten on the inside. You have no idea what names people used to call me, for the name "Jessica" before did not have a good reputation. Until when I reached 20, I decided to close my ears from other people's negative words and at the same time, I started changing the way how I lived my life.

It was not easy... I recall that I tried many things for me to change this. The first step that I took was to divert the channel of the words that I hear, instead of paying attention to the negative ones, I focused more on the positive ones.

Next was, I started searching the internet for daily affirmations or positive quotes to acquire positive thinking, it was good and helpful but still, it was not enough to combat some "heavy" days I had.

I also met and was set free by the Word of God. It was a great change in my life, but something was still lacking...

Even after receiving the Holy Spirit and being a wife, I still had signs of "low self-esteem" left inside of me. I was not even aware that it was visible... but thank God someone helped me. :)

She read me Jeremiah 1:4-10... Then I prayed to God what I would do about it. I discovered a powerful weapon to finally overcome this, it is nothing but FAITH.

All the time, I need to use FAITH in order to overcome my own self, my own thoughts, and my own feelings.

Words can only hurt us if we allow it to penetrate in our hearts... It can make us suffer forever.

On the other hand, the words that come out of our lips are also our responsibility. We must always be conscious of what we are speaking and seek for God's wisdom and guidance when is the right time to speak and when is the right time to be silent, especially when we need to speak the truth to someone. Do not forget that in the same way that words can put down our own self-esteem, our own words can also destroy other people's self-esteem.

Mrs. Nanda suggested in the book: to get into the habit of complimenting other people. I confess that my jokes used to be very hurtful, to the point of making my classmates cry back in college. :)))))) But when I learned to start appreciating others, I found out how much fun it is to spread sincere compliments, starting with the people who are closest to me!

Jessica Shigeoka

DISCLAIMER: The "40 Secrets for the Single Woman" is a book written by Mrs. Nanda Bezerra. I did not write the 40 Secrets, what I am writing in this blog are my own experiences and how I identified myself with each Secret found in Mrs. Nanda's book. :) Find out more about it here.

Tuesday, 6 January 2015

Secret #6: Confidence

Men do not like women who acts as if he ties him up with chain on the neck...

Let me explain... This happens when a woman becomes too clingy and sticky with the man. She wants to be with him ALL the time, she calls him ALL the time, she watches what he is doing ALL the time, she checks who he is talking with ALL the time, she literally tracks his steps ALL the time, she wants to control him ALL the time. If this woman could get into his thoughts and control his mind, for sure she would do it!

Funny, right?! But at the same time, I can imagine how annoying it is!

"This attitude in women will surely lead to a failed relationship. And worse still, when the relationship does break up, you are left feeling lonely, lost and with no self-esteem..." (Extracted from 40 Secrets)

Mrs. Nanda nailed it! I used to have this attitude, and I already learned not to commit the same mistake in my married life... The tips that were written on the book were exactly what I did to change that attitude - I kept myself busy with the things of God, discover new things about myself, and explore new skills that I never thought I could do.

For those who are not yet in a relationship, bear this in mind so in the future, you would know what to do...

For those who are in a dating status and thinking to continue to the next level, keep in mind that in the future, you can not keep your husband with you 24/7. Of course that he needs to work to supply your needs, if one day you would have children, it will require even more of your time from each other... but be careful not to be a "begging wife" in the future because this kind of attitude of begging attention all the time will push him away from you; make him want or eager to be with you instead...

Real happiness does not require begging for attention, do you agree?

I am happier when my husband do things without me asking him to do... I love it when things happen spontaneously, and not because I dictated it to happen.

It is a case to case basis... but for example, right now, my husband and I are in the situation where we are together almost 24/7, LOL. We have no one else but each other! So there is no way for me to beg even more of his attention, right?! But I love it, I really do, I do not get tired of being with my love! :) But did you know that even though we are together almost 24 hours a day, my life still does not revolve around him?

How am I able to do that? First, because I know my priorities... Second, because I know how to place myself in his shoes that means, we know that both of us need space and we respect that... Third, I am learning to be balanced - knowing when to give him space and knowing when to give him attention. And fourth, I do not compare my relationship with others. ;)

To enter into a relationship, especially marriage is serious, but does not mean that our world must revolve around that person, if we do, we are giving them the power over us and we lose our self-confidence...

Do you remember the previous secrets "Self-love" and "placing God on the top-list"? These are also essential to avoid this!

Jessica Shigeoka

DISCLAIMER: The "40 Secrets for the Single Woman" is a book written by Mrs. Nanda Bezerra. I did not write the 40 Secrets, what I am writing in this blog are my own experiences and how I identified myself with each Secret found in Mrs. Nanda's book. :) Find out more about it here.

Saturday, 3 January 2015

Asian Hair: Colours that suit you

I always heard from my friends " you're so lucky to have asian hair!" I agree that having a hair like this has its advantages, it's straight and thick naturally and it's less hassle when trying to arrange it, but as most women, there are times I feel like doing something different with my hair
We, who have straight hair, can't wait for an opportunity or occasion to make some curls :) #loveit!
Well who can understand women, they are never satisfied... if their hair is straight, then want to add some curls to it, if curly, they want to make it straight... 
Another thing that can tire us is the hair colour. I wanted to change, but did you know that not all colours suit the asian hair?
Obviously in the media, you will get everything... even some blonde asian... and some people think it's nice, but in my opinion it looks too fake.
I have researched and I found some nice colours for asian hair, and I will leave here my personal opinion.
As the asia skin is a bit yellowish, the hair must be with hot tones, nothing like greyish or silverish colours. So let's see: 

Black is the natural colour, so it goes without saying that it looks so elegant. Take a look at the ex-miss universe, which by the way is so pretty:

Brown is also really nice, it can be chocolate tones, or a little lighter:

And to change the look but not so radically, what about some highlights?
They can be in redish tones.

Very gorgeous, but be careful. For highlights of these tones or lighter, you should still leave the hair beneath, dark, as it leaves a natural colour to it.

And never dye your eyebrows, please! :)
Or it can be in honey tones, like the one I have done:

Did you like it? Are you thinking of changing your hair?

Be also careful to go to a good professional, ou to use a good dye. Our hair looks chic on its natural, and if you choose a bad colour tone, or a professional that don't know how to work well, you can end up making your hair look poor and ugly :(

Isabela Nascimento

Tuesday, 30 December 2014

Secret #5: Self-Love

It is interesting how easy it is to see and confess our weaknesses but it is very hard to see our potentials.

I had a personal issue regarding this topic of "self-love" because I really did not know how to love myself before... and for me to be able to identify "Why?" I needed to dig the past and find out its root. It was not easy but it was the best way that helped me to put an end on my insecurities and complexes.

It's very easy to say to someone, "You must learn to love yourself" but I understand how hard it is to apply it especially if certain circumstances happened to us from our past, and sometimes we do not even recognize how much the following situations might have been affecting us why we lack self-love...

Here, I wrote some reasons that I could think of why people, especially women find it hard to love themselves...

- Probably they faced sexual abuse, and the worse is that there are cases that the abuse are from the people closest to them like father, grandpa, relatives...
- Maybe their parents, instead of being thankful for having them as their child, they are the ones who curse the child and wish they were never born...
- Probably the person grew up in a broken family and was left neglected
- Perhaps the person was a battered child
- As we live in the world where negativity prevails, we grew up in an environment where we feel less of ourselves, we only hear negative words from people who are surrounding us and make fun of us...
- As we are growing up, we start to be influenced by media which always try to impose the idea that if we don't have long slender legs, or white soft skin, or straight blonde hair, then, we are ugly.
...and the list goes on.

All these things contribute why many of us end up thinking negatively about ourselves, we diminish our worth!

When I was still studying, I remember that I was not competitive and was always pessimistic about myself. I always had this thought that others were better than me, that I couldn't do this, I culdnt't do that, that I couldn't lead, if so and so was here, he would know what to do, etc... etc... I did not believe in myself!

Secondly, I had no self-value that I easily fell in love with guys who were not worthy or below standards!

I was only able to find a way out of this and I have learned to value myself when I finally had a personal encounter with my dear God! I found out the real meaning of the cross, that I'm so important for my Lord Jesus that He died on the cross for me (and for you) to give us life, light and to rescue us from the hands of the devil! His love is incomparable, I can't find the right word to express it! No one else can ever love me like He does! As a result, I learned to value myself, I learned not to seek approval from others. I learned not to seek love and appreciation from the wrong sources... I learned to believe in myself that I can do all things! That all things are possible! That I can excel! And I can shine my own light as long as I am with my Jesus!

I can say that I became a more pleasant person to be with... I have learned to find out the root of my lack of self-value, and I was able to cut it out. I accepted the love of God and I love Him above all. Second, I learned to value myself that's why I am able to love others without expecting anything in return, even if sometimes they reject the love or don't appreciate... Well, I am happy to love them anyway! :)

How can you start loving yourself?

Why not start by deciding NOT to say/confess anything negative about yourself?! (Ex: You would sacrifice not to say, "I can't" , "I am too short" , "I am too young" , "I am too old" , "I am too fat" , "I am weak", "I am only like this" and so on... And you will start focusing on your qualities/potentials and everyday, you would say something good about yourself in front of the mirror, can you do that?!)

Remember, believe in God and believe in yourself! ;)

Jessica Shigeoka

DISCLAIMER: The "40 Secrets for the Single Woman" is a book written by Mrs. Nanda Bezerra. I did not write the 40 Secrets, what I am writing in this blog are my own experiences and how I identified myself with each Secret found in Mrs. Nanda's book. :) Find out more about it here.