This past weekend has been one of the most amazing and inspiring weekends for me in a LONG TIME! There were so many small and large details that contributed to its overall success that I naturally had to share it with ya’ll to give you the same encouragement that it gave me! 🙂
It started with a bi-annual three-day retreat that my church (The Rock Churches) puts together every year called “The Encounter.” In summary, it is a retreat in which men and women come together to have a experience with God, address and conquer past issues/pain, and grow a closer relationship with Him. I have been going to this retreat for about four years, however this year was VERY different. The first day we learned about Jesus and the cross, including what each nail that he took meant for our healing both physically and spiritually. The second day, we learned about self-esteem (viewing yourself the way God views you), conquering forgiveness and overcoming spiritual attacks. Both of these days were equally amazing and gave me with so much guidance! However, the third day was what brought it all home and put the icing on the cake! I was able to witness one of my sisters (in Christ), Martina Calcagno, get ordained as a pastor and given leadership over our European church locations! 🙂 She moved to New York for dance and started coming to our church about three years ago. After attending the church for about six months she was determined to start/open a location in her home country of Italy! Not only did she start a church, she opened THREE LOCATIONS in Italy (all three are growing and flourishing daily!)
Martina is a young woman in her mid-twenties who’s a part of a traveling ballet dance company. She made time in her busy schedule to teach weekly bible studies to her family, and because of the continual growth the bible study became a church service. She eventually returned to her country to lead the service as she continued to start bible studies in other parts of Italy. They all yielded the same results! Her story and journey to becoming an ordained pastor is one that I have been fortunate to witness up-close and I could not be more inspired and motivated!
This weekend was an awesome lesson that no matter how busy your schedule may seem or how many excuses you may use as to why you aren’t walking in your full potential, YOU CAN DO IT! You don’t need more time, you just need to MAKE the time to do it! There are no acceptable excuses because God is with you and will always guide you into your victory! Our lives and everything that happens within them are not a surprise to God, he knows our capabilities and our weaknesses. If you trust in him he will lead you into a life that you couldn’t have imagined; a life that accomplishes goals, breaks barriers and lifts you to new heights!
Pictured below is Martina Calcagno at the Ordination Ceremony! She is the ray of sunshine sitting down with a huge smile on her face (per usual!)
We are officially half-way through 2017, and so far I’m feeling pretty good! Recently, I sat down with a small group of women that I’m close with and chatted about how we felt about our year thus far. We had all written a set of goals (and even made vision boards!) filled with things that we planned to accomplish this year. We decided to revisit those goals to check in on our progress in order to hold each other accountable. As we all went around in a circle sharing our successes and pitfalls during the first half of the year, I noticed a common word used to describe what we felt was our drawback…COMPLACENCY!! God had blessed each of us in different ways during the year, however; we realized that we had in one way or another become complacent in our blessing. We knew this because God had given each of us various revelations/signs showing that He had more for us and telling us to keep moving forward and higher. It was as if we had small pieces of a puzzle, but when we came together and shared our stories our pieces formed a unified picture and message.
Complacency is something that many people either do not realize they are dealing with or don’t know how to move forward. It’s easy to get comfortable and relaxed in your current place and/or situation when you know that going to a higher level will require you to become uncomfortable and step out on faith. I will be the first to admit that I have been there many times, but thankfully God did not allow me to stay in the situation too long. He placed me on a path that I had no choice but to go higher. Even when I wanted to turn back and go back to my comfortable place, it was as though my past had suddenly become a barren desert that was no longer appealing to me. He changed my vision so that I could see my complacency the same way He had viewed it all along, dry and barren with no sign of direction.
As quickly as God blesses you and moves you forward, know that to whom much is given much is required. God is always desiring us to go higher and to new levels in Him. In doing so, He gives us the wisdom, strength and perseverance we need to be properly prepared for our next level of blessing and responsibilities.
2017 is your year of VICTORY!! God will only take you as high as you allow him! Be open and willing to change, advance and move in whichever direction He leads you. Time to say sayonara to complacency! 🙂
Striped Crop Top: H&M || Tulle Dress: Forever 21 || White Denim: Tory Burch || Heels: Forever 21 || Handbag: Gap || Rings: Forever 21 || Scarf: Crossroads Trading Company
At the beginning of this year I re-launched my YouTube Channel! 🙂 There are many features that will be apart of this channel including beauty & hair tutorials, style videos, uplifting testimonies of faith and best of all, Center Stage!
Center Stage is a feature on the Chrissy Joy Style Channel in which I interview various men and women within the fashion & entertainment industry that have uplifting and inspiring testimonies of how they got to where they are at the pinnacle of their career. I believe that everyone has a story of perseverance, faith and hard work that allows them to succeed in their career and my goal is to share their story with YOU to keep you going and working toward the beautiful calling that God has over your life! 🙂
Todays Center Stage feature is on designer, boutique owner, and style philosopher, Jerome LaMaar! From becoming the Creative Director of Baby Phat before the age of 20, to showcasing his collections at New York Fashion Week, and dressing the likes of Beyoncé & Mariah Carey (to name a few). Jerome has paved his own lane in the fashion industry and done so with style and gratitude! Check out his story below and take a tour of his South Bronx gallotique, 9JBX!
Let me know your thoughts on Jerome’s story and if inspired you in any way! 🙂
It’s Mayyy!! The sun is shining, the pools are opening and the cherry blossoms are in full bloom! I love everything about spring time which means I have been bopping around these NYC streets with a smile on my face for the past few days. The only thing that has been playing with my emotions lately has been the temperature of the weather! One day will be a high of 85 degrees and the next the high will be 60 degrees. The current scenery in NYC looks like spring but the temperature makes it feel like it’s fall.
This thought has been reigning in my mind for the past week, until God showed me how this current weather situation can be applied to other areas of my life. On Tuesday night, one of the ministers at my church made a statement that has been food for thought for me! She said that sometimes God can tell us we are in a certain season but the conditions that come with the season say otherwise. The season may feel and even look like your past season, yet God keeps telling you that it is a new season of endless possibilities. It is in those moments that you must learn to believe in what your (God) calendar is saying. The forecast of your life could lead you to believe that you are in the middle of hurricane season with no end in sight, but if your (God) calendar tells you that you are in the middle of spring with endless blossoms and flowers, BELIEVE IT!!
God cannot operate when doubt is present, but when you can walk with your head held high in the middle of hurricane, wearing a bright floral sundress and a smile, you wont need God to reassure you of your new season, because you will already be smelling the flowers! 🙂
New York Fashion Week was very interesting for me this season. It started off cold and nasty but ended on a brighter and less messy note. I only attended about 2.5 days of shows (even though I originally planned to attend 5 days) due to being sick on the first day and booking a styling gig on the last three days of shows. At first I was annoyed at how everything I’d planned seemed to be getting derailed and flipped around. Many of the shows that I was most excited about seeing…I missed!
I forced myself to change my perspective on day four. This was the day that I was offered a styling gig for the remaining three days of Fashion Week, but wondered if it would be worth it to miss the rest of the week. However, God showed me that this was exactly what I had been praying for, but in a different package.
One of my goals for the year is to have multiple streams of income from various jobs (styling, blogging, contributing, commercial modeling, etc.) I wrote within my goals that I wanted to always have money coming in from one of these areas. God quickly reminded me of this when I accepted a styling job during a time that I really wanted to see my favorite designers new collections come down the runway (up close and personal.) He also reminded me that I don’t have to always be on the scene and in front of the lights to have an experience. I was not at the shows for the majority of this season, but the time I attended was memorable. I made awesome connections, caught up with old friends, and made new ones. It was the perfect example of how sometimes less is more!
This season, I only have two looks for my NYFW Style Diary, but I am in love with each look and had fun putting them together! They’re both layered looks that include pieces from Brooklyn vintage boutique, Shirley and Alice! Check them out below and let me know which one is your favorite! 🙂
Jumpsuit & Jacket : Shirley & Alice Vintage Boutique || Silk Printed Scarf : Crossroads Trading Company || Bag: Ralph Lauren || Sunglasses : Sunglass Spot || Booties : Zara
Jacket : Shirley & Alice Vintage Shop || Turtleneck & Long Button Down: H&M || Lace Skirt: Crossroad Trading Company || Shoes: Converse || Sunglasses : Mahps Vintage