Hi everyone! It has been way too long since I have written a blog post and honestly, I missed it. For the most part, I use my IG account to share my everyday life (or as much as I think I should share). All that to say, I really wanted to share a small part of the current season I am in.
I feel like most people think I am living my best life simply because I am in the city of many dreams, the city of the creatives, the city of angels. And do not, seriously, get me wrong, I love being here. BUT. Everything in life comes at a cost. Whether Christian or not, there are sacrifices you have to make and decisions you have to choose in order to move forward.
So… This last season I have endured probably the toughest test of my faith (still am). I am not the strongest person in the bunch, but what I am finding is that as long as I am standing on God’s word, I can withstand anything. Some would dare to say withstanding the hits of life makes you weak; you should protect yourself, fight back, do all that you can to make it work, etc. etc. but honestly there is only so much you can do on your own that at a very opportune time, you will crack. And I have.
It all started at the end of February, when I had a crazy feeling I would need to transition from my current job then to another. I ignored the feeling, tried to ride the wave, and boom. On March 29th I was laid off.
Compared to most popular reactions, I was very excited to not be a part of the company because I disliked my position. I was not growing and I was simply not thriving in my skills or talents. Like anyone would, I began to apply to jobs I was most certainly qualified for (or at least I thought) and got a few calls back.
Interview after interview, I did not receive any follow up and did not land a thing. Month after month, I cried and waited and prayed, and doubted, and feared, and you can only imagine. I was near depression. Those 3 long months of April, May, and June without a job IN LOS ANGELES have been the hardest. I was stressed. For sure not financially stable. I had to catch rides in order to save gas. Did I mention my car had the most issues during those three months, totaling up to more than my rent??? I even had to ask my younger brother to help me pay a bill I just could not afford.
Most of you know that I like to think things through (sometimes too long) when making decisions and man… staying in LA has been the hardest yet most growing choice I have made. During that dark time of my life, I have evolved into a passionate, relentless woman who believes the impossible can still happen despite circumstance.
I now work part time, thank God, but it is still hard. Trying to get out of debt and feed myself on a budget is VERY hard. But you know what, I simply want to share this reality because it is not always what it seems. I used to be so open about my wounds and pains in the past, but recently I have only shared highlights of LA living because I felt shame in the reality I am in. Of course, not everyone needs to know the details of my life, but I do believe that by being real in the process I can absolutely encourage someone in a similar situation.
Throughout this time, I have learned that my contentment cannot be established in a job, people with access, money, or possessions. I have developed the most raw and organic way to Jesus’ heart by being very very very open with how I have felt and I would not trade those beautiful moments with Him for any career. My soul is refreshed with His sweet reminders of old promises I forgot about and I cannot wait to see them unfold.
During this time though, I have been working on my personal brand, and a project that is very dear to my heart. You will soon know about this so stay tuned!
As many of you know, I recently moved to California for an internship with the amazing Bianca Olthoff and her ministry, In the Name Of Love. With only one month to figure out if I should have came, how it was all going to be provided for, etc., God has blown me away with everything that has been happening.
Last year I mentioned to God how I wanted to visit the West Coast before I officially moved to NY. Although NY didn’t work out, I still desired to come out to the sunny state of California. During spring break, I remember trying to plan out a birthday trip with the girls out to LA and seeing who would want to join me. That trip also did not happen but needless to say, I am now in the city of Angels every weekend. What is life?!
Call it luck or coincidence, I know this has been God all along. I might have missed His direction or made it all up in my mind, I don’t know. What I do know is that His favor and protection have been with me all along. People wish of going places and working towards them, (in which I do too) but when you have God on your side, some things just fall on you because He loves you.
This summer I want to challenge how you see God. I want you to simply ask Him to reveal Himself to you. Not in any specific way; just ask Him. He knows what way will speak to your heart more than I can try to suggest.
God is a God of wonder, of grace, of mystery, and of so much adventure.
I really believe He wants to show us more of who He is. Sometimes this new perspective comes when we ask for those desires we have deep in our hearts. Speak them out! Do you want to travel around the world? Ask Him to make a way and provide right opportunities. Have you thought about starting a book? Begin to write it out and ask Him for wisdom on how to publish it. You’ve never had your own car? Oh, He can make it happen. One of my intern sisters got a car as soon as she came out to California. Trust me, He can do it ALL as we seek Him and obey Him. He will never f a i l us. He will always desire to leave us with wonder.
Pray for me as I am in a new land with new expectations. I am praying for all of you my readers. You are all so amazing! And I cannot wait to share more adventures in the future.
As always, follow me on IG / SnapChat to see what I am up to! Til next time!
As many of you know, I planned on moving to New York City about 6 months ago. I began this plan literally one year ago, had a budget, found a roommate, and expressed a lot of faith for my vision to take this concrete jungle by storm.
Needless to say, with wise counsel in my life, I decided that last November was not God’s best time for me to move to NYC. I did go to explore, connect with others, and to be re-inspired by the city that never sleeps.
Very shortly after my 2 week stay, I experienced a rough season. I was questioning if I heard God, if I was going crazy for even trying to go, if I looked stupid for even saying a word about my vision to people, the list goes on and on. My mind waged war within. I wanted to live for Christ wholeheartedly but I was so heartbroken. Where was God in this situation?
I slowly began to drift away from trusting Jesus and His plan for my life. I began to disobey the smallest things because I was careless. In my mind, since God did not care about my plans, I was not going to care about His. But even then, I knew deep inside that God was looking out for me, even when I didn’t see it. I forced myself to stay in church, to serve every week, to invest in others’ visions with what I could, and to simply be faithful with what I had.
I wish I could say it was easy and that I was joyful this entire time, but I would be lying.
It was HARD. Actually, it sometimes still is hard.
I felt like the last one picked out on a team, like God forgot about me and my desires, like everything I had done was unnoticed, etc. And even THEN, I still was faithful with what I had.
A few weeks before my birthday, I was tagged on an IG post for a summer internship and it caught me off-guard because I honestly did not think I was qualified for it. The person that tagged me encouraged me to apply and that same night I filled out that application.
The same week of my birthday, I got an email saying I was one of the girls being considered for the duration of the summer internship. So I interviewed and I just let God take care of everything else. I took a vacation in Miami for my birthday, and it was as if the enemy just wanted to destroy my entire hope. My purse, wallet, cash, and camera got stolen. (blog post here) And you can only imagine how I felt. But even THEN, I praised God and declared Him faithful in my time of loss/violation.
As much as I wanted to just say forget this faith walk, I kept surrendering everything to God. I experienced so much loss in the last year that I felt I had no better option than to continue surrendering my plans and will to Him. Through all my emotions/faith being shaken, I got a second email saying I would get another interview opportunity that would determine my plans for the summer.
I got excited yet nervous because I was not expecting to be a part. I felt like this was too good to be true, too good for me, too big and amazing for little ol’ me.
(WHY DO I UN-QUALIFY MYSELF SO MUCH?!)
As the second interview ended, I prayed and surrendered everything to God all over again. I left my plans in God’s hands. I did my part and now it was up to Him to do His. I only wanted to be accepted if this was part of His plan for my life. And guess what?
I am still beyond overwhelmed trying to make sense of why I have clothing piles laying out everywhere as I try to pack. It would take another 30 minutes for me to type up all the emotions I have had experienced in the last four weeks when I found out I got in the internship. Talk about excitement, expectation, faith, joy, hope, anticipation, a little bit of nervousness, man.
The only thing I can say is that GOD IS FAITHFUL. He is able. He is gracious. He is our Shepherd.
Can I just brag on Him? I literally don’t know how this happened. Six months ago I was crying and questioning everything in my life, and now I am rejoicing and thanking God for His unexplainable plans. Wow. WOW. W O W. My mind is blown.
If you have been questioning God’s plan for your life, know He HAS you. He really does. Even when things do not make sense—trust Him. Even when all hell breaks loose—TRUST HIM. Even when everything seems to be going in the opposite direction—TRUST HIM. I saw myself in New York City and now I am going to Cali. LOL. God is funny. But oh so intentional; who knows, maybe this is a stepping stone? Maybe this is needed before NYC? I do not know. And you know what? That is okay. We have to learn how to be okay with not knowing it all. I have tried and tried to figure out my life and I fail every single time. That is part of having FAITH. It is not faith when you see it all; it is faith when you don’t see it all and still trust.
I cannot wait to get to California. This is my first time going to the West Coast and yooooo….. I am about to be tanning everyday. LOL. But really, I am going to have a blast and I cannot wait to share my journey with you all!
Join me in my California journey starting next week. Check out my IG and FB for more updates. Until next time!
Many of you have been wondering why I haven’t moved as I said I would have by now. Although there are multiple variables in this equation, there is one major reason for the slight adjustment of my plans. At first, I hesitated to even say what I am about to express because I didn’t want to be embarrassed, I didn’t want to feel as if I could not meet deadlines, and among a plethora of other thoughts, I did not want to appear weak. But I know I have to because it is my responsibility to help others out in the same situation I am in or will be in.
About two months ago, I had a meeting with my dear big brother/mentor/pastor/spiritual father. As I met with him, he was excited to hear me step out on faith but he also wanted to help me by guiding me with wisdom. So, what did he do? He gave me homework that included writing my vision, goals, and practical steps to achieve them.
I did my homework and a few weeks later, I presented the assignment to him. I was nervous but at the same time, I rested assured in what God had given me to accomplish in NYC. Needless to say the meeting was successful but it also gave me a different perspective.
My leader believed I should give my move a little more time before I jumped out on faith due to multiple factors not being solid YET. I say YET because they were/are being worked on and the answers have not been a solid YES. God is not a God of confusion (1 Cor. 14:33), and lowkey I was confused about some decisions I needed to make. Like a good leader, he did NOT force me to make the decision, but he confidently suggested that going to New York for two weeks would be a great time to EXPLORE the land to see what it was like, to see the people, the strongholds, the issues, the neighborhoods, the transportation, and everything in between.
Then Moses sent them to spy (explore, scout) out the land of Canaan, and said to them, “Go up this way into the South, and go up to the mountains, and see what the land is like: whether the people who dwell in it are strong or weak, few or many; whether the land they dwell in is good or bad; whether the cities they inhabit are like camps or strongholds; whether the land is rich or poor; and whether there are forests there or not. Be of good courage. And bring some of the fruit of the land.” Now the time was the season of the first ripe grapes.
As soon as I got home, I prayed. But deep in my heart, I knew that this was the best decision for NOW. I took a couple of days and made my decision. And this decision gave me courage. I believe I would have added so much pressure to my life I would have been forced to get a side hustle to earn money, to find a home because hotels are oh so expensive, to make friendships happen, etc. Pressure is good in the right context; but this would have been too much too soon. Who knows what else could have happened if I would have moved on October 28th foreal!? We will never know.
Wow. What a journey it’s been so far! Honestly, I have learned so many things from being in the middle of this leap of faith. The main thing I have learned is to be led by God but also consult with leaders you TRUST. The Word says in Hebrews 13:17 to “Obey your spiritual leaders, and do what they say. Their work is to watch over your souls, and they are accountable to God. Give them reason to do this with joy and not with sorrow. That would certainly not be for your benefit.” It is not because they rule your life; it is because their responsibility is to watch over your souls. Even if they make a mistake, they are accountable to God and God can restore it all. God honors submission/obedience. And truly, I would rather submit to someone whom I believe hears from God than to go out on a whim and pretend like I know what I am doing. Yes, it sucks to not be in the city right now, BUT I am thankful for leadership that cares about me and my future.
I encourage you to reach out to the people whom know your journey, your heart, and have your best interest in every aspect of life. Also, time is KEY but don’t feel pressured by it. I know I was. My mind has changed a little and I now use deadlines as markers to guide me along the right path. OH yea. Before I forget, know that it is okay if you do not meet a deadline.
Your purpose is still YOUR PURPOSE.
Your calling will not be taken back (Rom. 11:29); God is bigger than our plans and His will ALWAYS prevails (Prov. 19:21). If you have been stuck or feel like there is a delay, know that God is literally working it all out because He cares about it all (Rom. 8:28). Focus on HIM, not the task. HE is our reward (Gen. 15:1). And will always be.
If you have any questions, suggestions, comments, or would like to contribute to my move, contact me at email@example.com or via social media (IG/Snapchat: @timagstyle).
The date of my move is TBA but trust me, you guys will know!
Hello everyone. As many of you know, at the end of August I announced that I would be moving to New York City on October 28th. Guess what?? I am HERE!!! WOO HOO! I cannot believe I am in the place I will call home VERY SOON!
*car break sound effect*
You might me wondering, what do you mean very soon? Well…. Let me catch you up on some things.
I have always wanted to move to the city. Since I began to be interested in fashion, around my 9th grade year of high school, I was interested in this big city. The fashion, for the most part, but also the hype of why so many people wanted to live here. So… as I began to truly dedicate my life to Christ, God began to show me more than just the city; He showed me purpose for the city.
My first ambition was to come and look good. Show my fashion sense and just live here because it was the thing to do. Reflecting on this motive, I see how selfish and lowly I was thinking. I was thinking from a worldly perspective instead of a heavenly perspective. Through seasons of maturing in my faith, my confidence, and in serving others, I have been molded for a greater purpose than just myself—to build God’s kingdom in the fashion industry.
Just like you, I have many questions on how it is all going to come together, on how the resources are going to come, on which people to connect with to get things done, etc… BUT the bottom line is that I am willing to do what it takes to move forward in my life and to help others do the same. I want the industry to see Jesus in a way they have never seen it. Whether I get rejected or accepted, my conviction of Jesus being Lord of all will remain.
I was blessed to have two of my best friends come transition me in this trip and I am thankful they are friends that are willing to sacrifice for me.
Moving on kids…
Regardless, I have not made the transition to NYC yet. But my hope and dreams are still unshakable. I will be back soon and cannot wait.
I pray this post encourages people who want to move, who want to be entrepreneurs, who are afraid of what people will think, who do not know how your plans are going to workout. Know that it is okay to be at that place and that things will work out. Be diligent and faithful with what you have, and the Lord will add the increase.
If you know me, you know that I love to connect with people on purpose. God connects us with people for specific reasons. Adam and Eve. Ruth and Boaz. David and Goliath. Jesus and the 12. Paul and Barnabas. The most fun and divine (seriously) way I have connected with people is through social media. I was connected with one of my big brothers on myspace and I turned my heart to Jesus months later. I love social media! Anyways, I am glad to say that recently I have connected with another awesome person — ALEXA FROM VIRTUOUSBEAUTYXO.COM.
She reached out to me and wanted to feature me on her page! I was like, ME?! But of course I said YES. I am so honored to be featured in my soul sister’s website! She is absolutely in love with Jesus, beautiful, driven, hilarious, and intelligent. Without further due, here is the link to the article! VIRTUOUSBEAUTYXO.COM
My 24th birthday is next week, April 7th! I cannot believe this year flew by. Before I celebrate, I wanted to share 7 things I have learned as a 23 year old since there are 7 days until my 24th!
I sound like a grandma, but seriously, I love reflecting and preparing for the next season in life. I guess that is where God has graced me with His wisdom. & no grey hairs! Glory. lol
Love past what is visible
Enjoy the moment
Always remain flexible
As a new-born believer, I have had many instances where people “offend me” and I have had to deal with it internally and externally. In reality, I take offense against what was spoken (or not spoken!) and let it affect my heart. Drawn out confrontation caused the pain to be deeper than if it was done in a more immediate manner. But even then, I realized that I was focused more on my pain than on the forgiving power of Jesus. I had to eventually repent for holding people in contempt. Jesus tells us that if we “forgive those who sin against [us], [our] heavenly Father will forgive [us](Matt. 6:14). Because He forgave me, I am empowered to forgive others myself and should every time I take on an offense.
The biggest fear I faced this year is probably the most rewarding yet. As I have previously talked about it in my First Quarter post, I decided to attend Victory Bible College 2 weeks before class started. How in the world did I make that decision so late? Let me tell you about my faith walk.
During the summer time, I was in a rough state. God was so kind and good to me though, He allowed me to go to the city of my biggest dreams for the low low. (insert shouting and praising music) I took this time to think through my life, reanalyze my dreams, and the Holy Spirit changed my complacency into courage. I decided in this trip that my deepest desires where not too big for God to fulfill, so I began to be attentive in my quiet time with Jesus for direction. During this time, I was also offered a job position that I had been qualified for way before I graduated college and it SEEMED so good I did not want to pass up the opportunity again. So I thought this season was going to be easy breezy, I was getting more Jesus, and I was going to be getting more money. LOL. Cool, sounds like a piece of cake right? Well…. During a conference, VBC’s school director made an announcement about attending and my spirit was quickened. It was surreal but at the same scary because this was not part of my plans for the fall. Needless to say, I applied, got accepted, and decided to attend. I remember waking up the morning of orientation and telling God how little money I had, expressing all my fears, and releasing my anxious thoughts. But I went. I went in faith, not knowing where the money would come from, not knowing what to expect, not knowing anyone in the program. Guess what though? I am about to finish my first year, have new friends for life, am expecting miracles, and have no debt to the school. Did I mention I have an awesome GPA? Hallelujah!
Whatever God tells you to do, GO FOR IT. He already made a way possible.
There are IG posts about it. People’s businesses and organizations encourage it, marketing agencies use it for their strategies —DREAM BIG. If you have ideas, plans, and desires that have not been done yet; go for it! It is powerful when you continue to repeat that dream in your mind because it begins to match what is in your heart. Because of that, you are able to move past excuses, self-limitations, and you begin to make moves.
My professor, Dr. Miranda mentions that when the picture in your heart matches with the picture in Heaven, miracles happen. This is how the Kingdom of God is manifested in our daily lives. So now, I am dreaming, visualizing, and walking by the Spirit in order to see my dreams come alive.
LOVE PAST WHAT IS VISIBLE
We all know people that can be annoying, that irritate our last nerve, and that we just want run from right? We are all different, therefore those differences can ultimately bring us together or draw us apart. Most of the time, we do not know how to treat those different from us, so we immediately want to avoid interaction with them. From coworkers to family, they can strike that one nerve that has the ability to send you to another language. But what I have learned is that love sees past the action and sees the heart. I might not see it physically, but what I do see on the outside reflects things that are going on internally (Luke 6:45).Just because someone does something I don’t agree with should not mean I cannot be the light or show them love like Jesus did. Jesus looked for the lost, not avoid them. Jesus was attentive to what was needed internally, not what was expressed externally.
ENJOY THE MOMENT
Our generation has a tendency to want the next big thing, including myself. The iPhone. The Snapchat update. The new Yeezys. The best filter for your IG post. A better job. But in the midst of this, we can lose the fulfillment of the present moment. This year alone I have avoided social media more than any other years of my life. Don’t get me wrong, I love social media; I oversee my own, my jobs, and my local church’s. But this entertainment can distract us from the NOW moment. 100% devoted attention is so rare these days! Let’s live life to the fullest in the moment.
A roof, bed, shower, clothes, and food. A car without a note! Education! Going to Walmart without people in your face! Shopping in the mall with your girls without restraints. Reading the Bible without someone holding a gun to your head! Cmon. So many things we have access to are beautiful privileges we should be thankful for daily!
ALWAYS REMAIN FLEXIBLE
I love the example of the rubber band. I have personally seen this myself as God was reminding me to stay flexible. When I braid my hair, I use tiny rubber bands that hold it together. There was one day I picked up a rubber band that was old. I had not used it probably in 2 months, so when i picked it up to use it, I began to stretch it and it immediately broke.
Two things learned from this example: when a rubber band is not used consistently, it loses resistance power. It begins to be stagnant and can no longer be used for its purpose. And once the stagnation begins, it dries quickly to the point of breaking within one attempt of use! In every season, I have learned that we need to remain utilized, stretched, and able to draw back to our original position, spending time with the Lord for refreshing.
This post was longer than I planned, but I love to share what God teaches me with you guys. I cannot wait to show all of you my next fashion post, and of course, my birthday shoot. 😀
It has been about two months since I have written a post… I know, I know! All the consistency I had going and then I crash. What happened? Let me catch you guys on what has been going on in my life.
The month of February was full of tasks, rethinking, and analyzing the vision I have for my life this year. In short, February was grind time internally and at home. I had plate full of school work, multiple shifts on same day basis, and the free time I did have, I spent it myself to rest. It was a busy month but of course, I took time to majorly enjoy it in two different occasions.
“But wait, aren’t you single?”
Well…. Here is the big announcement..
I AM. lol
This year, instead of being grumpy, feeling lonely and forgotten about, God reminded me to have fun on February 13th. According to some women, this day is called Galentine’s Day. I saw the idea on my job’s IG. I began to think and asked one of my friends if she could host a “Galentine’s” party at her house. She loved the idea and to my surprise, it turned out to be an event for multiple single ladies I know. The idea came out of the blue (more of the Holy Spirit lol) but in return gave me an opportunity to embrace singleness, sisterhood, and the simple things in life.
During this time we all enjoyed yummy food, snacks, and took pictures like no other. I loved every single moment and I didn’t even remember I was single! I felt comfortable in my own skin, around the gals, and completely free! (In which reminds me of the importance of friendships that allow you to be YOU and YOU alone. Cherish those :D)
Then two weeks later, the turnup was R E A L. Three of my good friends and I took a weekend trip to one of the most beautiful spots in America—Miami, Florida.
We decided to do a night flight for convenience with everyone’s schedules, more like mine lol, and because airfare is usually less expensive. It was the first time for me flying at night and I actually loved it!
Previous to this trip, I had never been to the beach before, so that was another great FIRST checked off my list. The water was perfectly blue, the sand was powdery soft, and the eclectic culture was BEAUTIFUL. I think one of my favorite precious memories there was enjoying speaking Spanglish naturally with all my Cubans, Dominicans, and Argentinians. AHHH! Just thinking about it makes me smile all over again.
Here is the Miami 2016 Vlog to get a better feel of the trip 😉
We definitely bonded as friends/sisters and cannot wait to travel some more together and individually.
2 Major Keys I Learned Overall: a. Take a vacation at least twice a year. b. God is consistently working, even when you are on “break.”
COOL MOMENT: WE ALL GOT TO MEET CHAD VEACH! He just released his new book, Unreasonable Hope, about God’s grace in situations we don’t comprehend. He gets to share his faith journey with his lovely daughter, Georgia. And I found out he is MEXICAN. So practically, we are like best friend cousins now. haha.
In conclusion, I have definitely been doing things that I enjoy not only as Fatima the cool Mexican, but also as the single, secure, adventurous, and young person that I am. Through the month of February, I realized that being me is fine. I am enough. I am perfect the way I am because God is with me and for me.
I have embraced much of my flaws, my weaknesses, and this is leading me to come out with a video about my journey of Singleness.
Yes, about me being s i n g l e.
I have always rejected talking about this topic because it has such a negative connotation, my girls and I are in the same boat, and people always ask me why I am not in a relationship.
Dude, I don’t know why. LOL. But what I do know is that I am finally truly accepting this awesome time of my life and being purposeful in all the decisions I make to extract the best out of it. 😀
This video will be up within the next month, probably after my birthday weekend! So bare with me as I prepare, record, edit, and then share.
Last but not least, thank you all for being in my life, accepting what I let you guys see of my life, and encouraging me to continue to do what I love to do—inspire you all through my daily walk. Whether it is fashion, the Word of God, or just a random hello in person that connected us, I am grateful for all of you following this blogger/vlogger.
In my DJ Khaled’s voice, “JUST KNOW” it will only get better from here.
Wow. Can you believe that in about 3 days a new year will be here? Although I am beyond excited for what is to come, I have been reflecting a lot on what happened this past year. For me, 2015 has been a rollercoaster of growth, emotions, tests, explorations, and most importantly, self-discovery. It was a year full of transitions from relationships, to jobs, education, and even mindsets. There wasn’t a specific “season” or a month were it all was bad or great; the whole year seemed like I was growing. I was being stretched like a rubber band; at most times painful because I resisted, but at times comfortable and fun because I had reached a new level of flexibility without breaking due to so much tension around me.
Despite all of the craziness, God has shown me His grace, comfort, faithfulness, joy, and unstoppable favor with Him and with man. Throughout the entire year, I knew things where going to change and not just because; but for the good and the perfect will for my life. I have definitely changed. I am not in the place I want to be, but I am not the same person I was last year. Testimony after testimony, I will proclaim the goodness of Jesus because He sustained me in one of the toughest years of my life. God is indeed good. I absolutely believe the best is yet to come. I believe 2016 is going to be the year of exponential success, prosperity, and abundance. Not just monetarily, but in love, in relationships, in serving, and in purpose.
I pray that you reflect on this year, evaluate where you are, and remain hopeful on what is up for 2016. Don’t beat yourself up if you are still the same or even if you slid back into things you didn’t realize. Make the choice today to move forward; you are loved and you are great. 🙂