537

We have this tendency.
to sugarcoat
to walk on eggshells
to keep the peace
or at least I do
…perhaps its the product of being the 2nd of 4 kids ( woop woop middlekids)
…maybe its the result of so desperately not wanting to be associated
 with the group of Christians who speak/behave 
ignorantly, pompously, arrogantly, & without compassion.
I definitely don’t want to cause any more damage
that’s why I’ve stayed so much more silent than I’d prefer to be,
because I don’t want to write off anyone from Jesus
…but neither of those things are a sufficient excuse to remain fearful 
of expressing 
of educating
of making people think outside their box
but TODAYS #ThressaThursday

 is wise,
 compassionate,
 hilarious 
and 
audacious
she has NO problem expressing her opinion,
** at least not that I know of
and makes you want to ask questions about that Jesus that she follows.
Time spent with her can be laughing hysterically,
like talking with a best friend you had all your life,
 or immensely thought provoking
but truly every interaction with her has left me wanting to be as audacious as she.
the very first time, she probably has no recollection of,
but I have never forgotten.
I was a student at Nyack college desperately seeking what to do with my life
what major to choose
she listened intently
she asked intentional question
her response wasn’t superfluous 
but concise
maybe its the reason I remembered it after all these years
” Thressa, wild mustangs are fast and strong, but when trained,focused and disciplined
they are faster,stronger, healthier then ever before,
likewise machine gun shoots their amo everywhere, but a rifle is used to hit the target”
okay so maybe I can’t recall it verbatim
& my knowledge on guns and what they do is so minimal it’s nearly obsolete
but the point is this
she didn’t sugarcoat
she didn’t tiptoe
she didn’t tell me what I wanted to hear
(quite frankly at the time I was annoyed because I just wanted her to 
do the “simple” thing and tell me what to do with my life)
yet her sound advice still resonates in my mind
as it has taken me years to realize the truth & power in her words.
yes I ended up choosing a major and graduating and that’s all well and good
but her priority wasn’t just giving me a major
it was giving me a vision
the past few years has been me discovering that vision
and often it’s been hit or miss 
 but I’m way closer now then I was then
because I’ve been honing in on being disciplined, focused,
training myself to acquire a vision.
But it’s not just those words she spoke
it’s the audacious way she lives out every day life.
When I see the things she posts online
I feel as though I am right there with her 
because she is consistent
with expressing herself 
educating others
& provoking people to think outside the box 
online as much as she does in person
Jamila,
you turned 40 this week
in case you didn’t know you are audacious and that inspires me
(and I’m CERTAIN that I am not the only woman who is inspired by you)
**I’m sure there are also men who are inspired by the way you live and challenge people to think.**
The purpose of this blog series of mine
 is for me is to look for the strengths in others that reflect Jesus, 
so that I may be more like Him, by encouraging someone who’s already rocking that trait.
Choosing a person, a word, and an application.
The first week was intentional, because Jesus is so intentional in everything He does,
the second week was humilty,because in all His majesty he still serves us with loving kindness,
and this third week  is audacious because that’s so much of who He is.
Jamila you are so wise hilarious compassionate and audacious unlike so many people who are speaking on behalf of Christ. 
As I nudge Greg as I read your status’ and say 
“YES… THATS EXACTLY IT” or ” WOAH MIND READER” or
“OHMYGRACIOUS JACKSON IS THE CUTEST BABY TO EVER EXIST” or
” THANK YOU” 
or ” INTERNET NEEDS MORE OF THAT”
I’ve come to the realization that you inspire me to be audacious.
not pompous, not arrogant, not ignorant, not without compassion,
but A U D A C I O U S.
because this world is severely lacking in people like you,
and this is such a winning character trait that is such deficit.
My application in attempts to be more A U D A C I O U S,
is to post more content that is thought provoking,
both on the blog, status instagram, all forms of social media.
To utilize these outlets for people to see
that there are  A U D A C I O U S  Christians out there,
who may not be as hilarious as you 😉
but through reading my posts/seeing my pictures can say
” woah who knew Christian’s could actually be compassionate, educated, wise 
 & audacious”
happy 40th Birthday Jamila
thank you for being A U D A C I O U S

audacious

[aw-dey-shuh s] 
1.

extremely bold or daring; immensely brave; fearless:

an audacious explorer.
2.

extremely original; without restriction to prior ideas; highly inventive:

an audacious vision of the city’s bright future.
3.

recklessly bold in defiance of convention, propriety, law, or the like;insolent; brazen.
4.

lively; unrestrained; uninhibited:

530

The evening is coming to a close,
and I’m typing against the clock as I seek to be intentional writing my #thressathursday piece
 I’ve gotten used to this person as a part of my life.
But God knows if this person were to move away I would be at an irreplaceable loss
 Equal parts generous, as they are hilarious
 knowing when to listen, and when to speak
consistently willing to serve others
 whether that involves patients, coworkers, family, or friends.
This person brings the love of Christ to everyday people CONSTANTLY
now you are free to think what you’d like but I see so much H U M I L IT Y in this person,
in my experience in our unanticipated friendship,
 this person doesn’t ever really seek the limelight
in an age where everyone yearns to be seen or heard,
she seeks to make sure others are seen or heard.
It was inspiring to see the way she loved,revered, and enjoyed being around her mother.
It’s interesting 
we humans think we know people simply after we meet them.
then all of a sudden
they become a major part of your life
before you know it,
its evident how much you didn’t know.
When you get to know people
TRULY know people
you become inspired.
And oh how it’s in the everyday
The little daily things;
 helping you move in, 
crying sobbing to  parenthood together,
living out the whole iron sharpens iron thing,
doggie play dates,
discussing national & international news
Home Goods adoring,
laughing at your on point impersonations of everyone,
the frustrations+ annoyances+pains + prayers shared
you see each others weaknesses and strengths
and rejoice for the gift that you received ,
 that you didn’t think anything of to begin with.
 Steph Raj 
if you didn’t already know 
you exude  H U M I L I T Y
haters gonna hate
and maybe they’ll/you’ll even disagree
but Steph 
you give without expecting anything in return
you aren’t one to act entitled
you are a constant source of comfort and laughter to friends near and far
you inspire me, because at the end of the day,
 you know who you’re really serving and ultimately know you got nothing on Him,
so you live to boast for Him.
Steph,
 your H U M I L I T Y is inspiring
along with your kindness, compassion, humor, and gentleness
my prayer is that Christ would lavish you with rest, joy, dreamjobs, & community
THANK YOU STEPH RAJ
Never look down on anybody unless you’re helping them up. Jesse Jackson
Humility is not thinking less of yourself, it’s thinking of yourself less. -C. S. Lewis

 FOR HELPING OTHERS UP 
FOR THINKING OF YOURSELF LESS
FOR STILL BEING MY FRIEND EVEN AFTER I POST THIS =p
*as far as application goes,
 I intend to practice humility daily , by asking myself:
IN ACTING THIS WAY,WHO’S NAME AM I TRYING TO MAKE KNOWN ?

523

  with THIS POST begins my second blog series, 

it is a series about the people in my life who
        
i n s p i r e     m e

once a week 
for however long it lasts
every Thursday 
  *times of day will most certainly vary*
                         I will highlight
                       O N E   PERSON 
                   
                                – and the-
                        
                       O N E    WORD
          that best describes how this person inspires me
                                             
                                      – along with-
 
                 O N E  APPLICATION
  
    because often 
being inspired 

isn’t  enough
we need to  be

intentional

to A C T  on it
I came up with this series idea entitled
#ThressaThursdays
( super creative i know = P )
this past Monday, when Greg & I decided to take a 

spontaneous trip

 to Jersey because I had off work for two days.
2/3 of my brothers were home 
which we were delighted about
& we got to spend time with the lovely blondes that
 are Cam, Mamae, & Tia Nubia. 

 This weeks

word & person

 is 

Brendan & intentional
 now as you can see in these pictures
he is scarce
not because he doesn’t like photos
( because we DaSilva’s love being in pictures)
but because he had committed to other arrangements in which he had to be intentional
in following through with
it has always been this way
even when we were kids
 he was intentional 
in being a bratty little brother & pushing my every button

 he is intentional in working out

he is intentional in his work ethic

he is intentional in pursuing his dreams
( ex; road trip cross country summer of 2015)

he is intentional in his relationships
…truly every time I’m home he’s spending time
with people he’s connected with that he’s known since his diaper days, or as random as just a brief crossing of life paths then BAM before you know it they’ve got a Brendan for life.
he is intentional still in his annoyance
he is intentional when he apologizes
he is intentional in romantic gestures simple & grandiose –> that’s his girl Cam, who I freaking adore !

he is intentional in sharing God’s love with others
he is intentional in telling you the truth
he is intentional in acting confident on the dance floor…even though we all know the truth 😉
he is intentional 
on being a kick-butt 
brother in law to my 
querido Greg

he  is intentional in focusing on his studies ( while his fun- loving sister *that would be me* is gallavanting around New Jersey with his girlfriend)
he has always been intentional in appreciating my best friend Grace  
& is intentional in remembering her value to me

                                   he is intentional in serving my mom as a thanks for all she’s done for us

he is intentional in his relationship with Jesus

 

 

  Brendan, my intentional brother
I look to you and am inspired 
by the way you live so INTENTIONALLY.
When I forget who I am & who’s I am
your  I N T E N T I O N A L living reminds me
It sounds ridiculous, & don’t get it twisted I’m not saying you’re always right.
I’m saying you’re INTENTIONAL living ,
the way that you’re all in in everything you do,
inspires me.
It motivates me to be INTENTIONAL
It shows me Jesus constantly.
You work hard play hard apologize hard and love hard
because of this gift you have of living intentionally.
NEVER. LOSE. THAT.
NEVER. WATER. YOURSELF. DOWN.
My prayer is that your time relationships resources rest & laughter would be maximized,
as you continue to live so intentionally.
As for me,
I am being INTENTIONALLY (  & have already begun)
by rekindling old friendships that for a while I’ve been saying ” one day ” to
by making time to converse with the man experiencing homelessness as you would
by considering my time and brainstorming how to maximize my time, this life,
in order that I too may live
in·ten·tion·al·ly
inˈtenSH(ə)nəlē/
adverb
  1. deliberately; on purpose.

516

This past Tuesday marked ONE YEAR of Greg working at Water Street Mission.
This past Saturday marked ONE YEAR of when we listened & where led into the land of Pennsylvania.
I wasn’t necessarily thrilled,
 to move YES, 
for Greg to get this job YES,
to know we following where God into unfamiliar territory YES
to Pennsylvania…ehhh, not so much.
but oh how a year changes things.
Into the land of Pennsylvania we went,
discouragement.
sickness.
rejection.
despair.
frustration.
confusion.
fears.
tears.
worries.
came R A G I N G in 
on different days
 for both of us 
on different levels
 for different reasons.

but often I’ve found that 
when you’re following God into those unfamiliar territories
its not all rainbows & butterflies
it’s more like storm-clouds & mosquitoes...
its scary,tiring, and unclear
and honestly just flat out annoying 
 oh how exhausting it can be 
defeating, until you realize 
the storm-clouds bring that revitalizing rain that nourishes
& the mosquitoes eventually die or get eaten by birds
& then you realize all these things made way for
joy.
confidence.
trust.
true friendships.
reconciliation.
gratitude.
hope.
kindness.
simplicity.
wonder.
contentment.
Sure enough in this past year
of where I had to learn how to stay and give thanks 
to bloom where I’m planted & adjust,
 God has us moving yet again.
Same state, same city, different house.
and this time around

I. AM. THRILLED.

to be staying in Lancaster,
to have grown so much by following, 
& to be beside Greg through it all 
as Jesus continues doing His leading thing.
If you haven’t picked up on this yet,
 I like to record data, reflect,chart growth, & apply the learned data.
( as evidenced by the making of this blog 😉 
Last, year before we moved I wrote a post called Come On In 
which featured pictures from our very first apartment as husband and wife.
I wrote it for three reasons;
1) to have record of our cherished first living space as husband and wife, 
2) to have photographs of it,
3) to give you readers who are already a part of our lives as you’ve been reading
a little glimpse into our humble abode.
As we prepare for another move, I figured why not keep up with the tradition?

Below you will find photos of our cherished 2nd living space as husband & wife 
( now featuring a dog & cat that weren’t part of the fam when we 1st moved in)
T H I S    A P A R T M E N T
was our refuge during the storm-clouds & pesky mosquitoes
a place where for the past 10 months
 we grew and cried and laughed and tried 
a place where we welcomed everyone
but naturally not everyone who follows our story 
was able to make it over
but dear friend/reader ( freader? )
worry not
once again

we. invite. you. 
to COME ON IN Lancaster city edition 😉
check out our apartment sweet apartment.
these spaces that have beheld our deepest tears & deepest chuckles.
where forgiveness + gentleness + patience now abound, after much practice 
we are moving soon
but this apartment 
with all the character that it has is;
 part of our story
part of God’s provision
part of making me a better woman + Greg a better man
& part of turning all our guests into family.
so though we are physically moving,
may you look at these photos and be moved
to appreciate the space you’re in
 to soak up each room 
and to say thank you for all the solace its provided.
Thank to You, Jesus, for the courage your provide for us to follow,
we’ll commit to doing so for the rest of our lives.
Thanks to you 351, valeu*.
* Brazilian Portuguese translation for it was worth it/it’s been real
Thanks to you freader, for following our journey,
come on in.
Up the stairs
the porch where lots of Greg brewing & lady eating 3 pound of raw cornish hens took place ( another storyfor another day)
the mudroom

an aerial of the mudroom
the kitchen 

where I 1st held Dorcas’ baby Jack,& where Greg tapped + kicked his 1st keg 

not pictured:all our dear friends who sat & shared in eating our food in return for their laughter around this table

                       what sealed the deal: IN HOUSE LAUNDRY ( back when we were deciding between which apt to get )
 it’s those
 bare
necessities
living room

 i spy Lady

birthdays,brunches, job promotions, & a new year all celebrated in here
Lady put your records on
Thankful for a bedroom with so much natural light

The TV room
tchau amigos sempre seja bem vindo =)

a month in the life: J A N U A R Y (510)

“a month in the life” posts are my first
 – but hopefully not last 😉 – 
series on the blog this year!
No reason to leave all the retrospecting to January,
that’s just greedy,
& its about time January learns to share.
I stumbled upon this awesomeaw3rfdc
( Lady made that typo with her nose & I just couldn’t delete it.)
 as I was saying
 this awesome idea
 via 

LOVE, The Olives 

 the blog of

 a lovely young woman who I grew up going to church with Tiffany Oliveira

she featured this series but calls it “this month”
A N D
I

LO V E D

I T !
so obviously 
to spice up our count up
I’m partaking in this intentionally reflective ” a month in the life” series
eager to see how each months ING’s are filled out

so CHEERS
 to this NEW year
to this NEW series
 – and of course –
to our SAME Jesus 
who makes makes it all possible
FEELING : excited to start my first blog series. 

LEARNING : quality over quantity.

PRACTICING : Greg’s Portuguese, after our trip to Brazil he’s only more driven to become fluent.

MASTERING : the use of  the espresso machine Greg got me for Christmas, he loves me a LATTE 😉

EATING : Commonwealth on Queen cuisine on the reg ( woo-hoo for farm to fork food)

LISTENING: to the “Whatever is Lovely“s Spotify playlist 
as I color like crazy while meditating on Jesus’ truth

PLAYING : Settlers of Catan ( & winning)

FINISHING : up our lease in this apartment * only 2months left ! *

READING : “Levanta-se e Ore”, because Greg’s not  the only one 
who needs to be practicing his Portugese

WATCHING : the STAR WARS SAGA. yes, I’ve never seen them. 
yes, we’re watching them 1,2,3,4,5,6.then 7.
yes, I want a happy ending for Anakin Skywalker/ Darth Vader

WEARING : Dock Martins, Elephant Pants ash got me, & my NJ
 *personalized to Rutherford* home-T Bryann got me 

WORKING : full time at Commonwealth on Queen & Greg is working on his Portugese

WALKING : Lady from the car to the dog park because she need’s the exerciseand asimple walk won’t around town wont tire her out

TRAVELING :drumroll please, to & from work this month… gotta work hard to play hard

DESIRING : more of Jesus, & more iron sharpens iron friendships/community

CELEBRATING : all that 2015 was, & all that 2016 will be

————————-

oh. my. gracious.

that was so fun.

thankful for a routine husband who will keep me consistent with this year round

as for you & I,
our only mission,
our only assignment,
“ALL WE HAVE TO DECIDE 
IS WHAT TO DO WITH THE TIME GIVEN TO US”- J.R.R. Tolkein
& not for nothing, but this year we get 366 days 
 make ’em memorable
FELIZ ANO NOVO. //.