AHEM!!!!

Let me clear my throat, folks! It’s 2020 and I made it!!!
Whew! Cheers…to…THAT! I know I’m not alone here.

In case you didn’t know, I have been living for 32 years (I just turned 33), and I have been blogging here for the past 8-ish. My embarrassing archives will go ahead and remain. Since it’s been a while, it’s a new year, and I see a few new faces here, I figured that is a good reason to re-introduce myself…kind of! So AHEM!!!! I present to you…

20 Fun Facts About Me

1. Give me a dance floor or karaoke and I come alive! No, seriously. I have a list of categorized songs that I can pull up right now. No alcohol necessary. Let’s go!

2. My personal bios are so difficult for me to write. A wise artist once told me that “we’re never just one thing”, and this statement couldn’t be further from my truth. I have done, can do, and will do so many wonderfully creative, tough, and humbling things. I also don’t necessarily believe that my identity comes from the things that I do (it changes in seasons!). One of my favorite roles, however, is being an aunt. I love my nieces and nephew so much, and another one is on the way! Yeee!!

3. I live an unconventional lifestyle serving God, and I love how His plan keeps unfolding for me. He knows me so well! The spontaneity and adventure life with Him brings is priceless!

4. Pre-200I went by the nickname, “Nikki” instead of my birth name, “Chan’tel”, and though most know me as Chan’tel in this stage of my life, “Nikki” occasionally burns my ears. In my younger years, my birth name felt more like a jacket too large to fit into. I often wonder how biblical characters like Abraham or Paul adapted to their name changes. 

5. My legs are probably hairier than yours during the winter 🤷🏽‍♀️, ’cause who’s not shaving unless they have a pedicure or massage appointment is ME! Too much information? I’ll spare you a photo of evidence.

6. I am finally admitting that I am a Yelp nerd. It’s a fun hobby for me that began with a heart to pay the favor forward after moving to a new state in 2011 (around the birth of this blog). Now, it continues to keep me exploring (gets me out of the house!), writing (good practice!), and somehow over the years has come with so many perks! (It’s neat to be elite).

7. Less is truly more for me. Less stuff (one could say I’m a minimalist) and less people (I can count my friends on one hand). I’ll take an experience over material possessions any day and a good friend with heartfelt conversation over many fans. Theee best!

8. I’m super low key. Partly because I think it wise and partly because I have issues with broken trust. I like living for me (and God) and if folks don’t know what’s going on, then I don’t have to hear their unsolicited opinion. I like to share information with purpose, not just because somebody’s nosey. What are your thoughts on this?

9. If you ask me what my favorite color is, I’ll say turquoise (also my birthstone) to keep the conversation short. It’s complex though. I like it all, and especially like wearing muted colors and earth tones. Accessories in coral are super cute too! Confused yet? I am woman, ha! Did not God create the rainbow?!

10. I’m pregnant…with purpose. And honestly, sometimes I feel overdue. Pray for your girl. I feel like I have been a spiritual doula for so many and now I’m in need of my own. Oh, so many dreams and goals. Oh, so many.

11. I often draft and prayerfully schedule out nearly all of my blog posts in advance. This means that most of my writings, though timely, are not written in real-time. I often minister to myself while reading along with y’all. It’s amazing. This post was written recently in November 2019.

12. I’m one of those people who listens to Christmas music year-round. Annnd?!

13. I’m naturally introverted, but the Holy Spirit is so good at balancing me out that many are convinced that I’m not. Oh, but I am!

14. My preferred methods of communication are written or video chat, and heartfelt over small talk. I don’t like talking on the phone, but I do because it’s unrealistic to avoid it completely, ha! Plus I have loved ones who prefer it.

15. My heart has been broken way more than it should have because not until recent years, have I learned how to guard it properly. I learned the hard way that hearts aren’t meant to wear on your sleeve. NonethelessI will forever love hard.

May the Lord teach and re-teach us how to guard our hearts appropriately and help us discern the motives of others and their interests in connecting with us. You, and all you encompass are beautiful. People will always want your pearls, so clutch them because they are precious.

16. I am single by choice and have not met anyone that has made me want to change that choice. For now, I’m enjoying the perks that may one day be missed.

17. I’m more of a no grey type of person. I’m all in, or all out. If you know me, then you know. No games. No gimmicks.

18. Some of my dearest relationships are long distance and I think it’s for the best. Maybe I’d be distracted from my God-given assignments if my sister-friends were all living in my current city. Miss them and look forward to reunions! I strongly relate to Paul in the bible and the longings in his letters.

19. The beach, sunrises, sunshine, iced lattes, hot tea, dark chocolate, smoothies, real fruit bars, leathers, bites, and twists. Belly laughs, random road trips, snail mail, instrumentals, handmade gifts, gel pens, hands-free purses and backpacks, naps, leather, lace, rainy days, foot massages, scenic hikes, surprise checks in the mail, frozen yogurt, hot sauce, hot wings, In-N-out burgers, tajín, karaoke, line dances, an awesome sale on things you need, kids, and Jesus please. These are more than a few of my favorite things.

20. A few months ago I decided I was going to stop waiting for certain circumstances to change before I started living fully the way I’ve been wanting to. I snipped some strings, sold some things, and now I’m soaring and catching wind! Weeeeee!! No limits. Let’s go!

 

©2020 • Chan’tel Nikole Grayson

#Jesus, #Tea, and #Me.

Hi lovas — Happy New Year!

It’s Friday night and I’m bundled up in my warm ugly snuggie looking thing. Just Jesus, tea, and me.  All I need, but more importantly, finally, all that I want.  There’s no place I’d rather be forever, than here in his love.  I’m head over heels.

I’m so content with where I am, who I am, and all that I stand for that creates this casserole of a me –to God be the glory! I like who I see in the mirror more each day.  I casually think back on old relationships that I could very well be in right now and I praise God for nights like this where I’m eternally grateful for what isn’t and what is.  I have no regrets and am at peace knowing that I’ve made decisions that were best for me.  Every decision you make is a destiny decision.

A little less than a year ago, I ended a pretty serious relationship with my most recent ex (I gratefully don’t have an array).  It  was sad and challenging at first, but a blessing to say the least.  The timing was divine and allowed for the protection of my heart and perspective on it all.  Had it been sooner or later, things would have been all jacked. My entry, “The Results Are In…” was a beautiful result of the end.

The enemy makes me sick perverting everything in sight.  But, what the enemy intends for harm, God faithfully turns around for good.  Geesh, Where would I be if not for the unmerited favor of God upon my life? I’ve learned so much about what I want and need in a relationship.  I’ve learned the bottom line.  What will absolutely work and what will absolutely not.  It saves me so much time and heartache.  I like to think of it all as God’s little evacuation plan.  All  it required was that I evacuate.  He took me to safety, showed me who I was, and re-defined my definition of “settle” and “standard”.  A definition not so much according to what I’ve been through, but according to the respectable woman I am.  I’m still learning.

keep calm have tea

Have you ever missed someone who was in the same room as you?  That’s how I was beginning to feel in my relationship with God as I got deeper in this relationship with this man of God.  I felt like God was so far, when truthfully He was just right over there in the corner watching me and missing me back.  It showed me that even being in opposite corners of a room is way too far for me.  I’m a Rae sheep and I can’t do far in the slightest; it’s agonizing.  I need to bump up against My Shepherd’s side when He walks.  I need to feel when He’s moving at all times.  I don’t want a jacket, I need His warmth.  It’s funny ’cause I’m a huge daddy’s girl on earth as well.  So big kudos to him for how great of a relationship I’ve been able to develop with my Heavenly Father because of his great example.  As a little girl, If he was grabbing his shoes, guess who had hers…yup, Nu Nu haha.  He had cereal, I waited patiently on his lap to drink his milk afterwards (yuck lol).  I was content in his presence.  Check out my post, “Fathers” for more on this — you can see the nostalgia even then.  I missed My Abba :(…

If God is love, then we should never be in love and missing God.  (1 John 4:8)

To each its own, and to each its walk, but If you’re a Christian, I want to ask you this…Why consciously choose to be half anything? Set a standard for yourself before you do for anyone else.  Stop talking about how you’re not gonna settle for anyone and start with not settling for you.  We have work to do and by God’s grace we can do it.  Choose this day whom you shall serve and serve well (Joshua 24:15).  For me and my house, we will serve the Lord.  Ha…the way this world is looking I just might be the only one in my house. Haha jk.  Seriously though, just grow.  Less talking and more doing.  Wanting what you need and all you need is a mature thing to want, and you have to kill your flesh to accomplish it.  Not easy it, but worth it.

Need > Want

Need > Want

“I have learned over the years that when one’s mind is made up, this diminishes fear.” – Rosa Parks

Do I want to get married to a man who loves the Lord as much as I do and is truly ‘about that life’? Absolutely.  Do I want children to laugh, play with and make me sound like my mother? Of course.  Does it seem impossible? Yup lol (just being honest).  But I’m safe in God’s hands.  I know what I want, I know what I need, and I know what I’m promised.  God is faithful.  It is my prayer that one day my man will find me on this narrow road that me and a few others travel and meet me in my Savior’s arms (Matt 7:13-14).  But until then, it’ll be just Jesus, tea, and me. Not too shabby, eh? 😉