A Little Hope Filled Update

Hey there friends! This post is a little like a newsletter just for you! I have all kinds of exciting new ideas and a fresh vision for Hope For Her Heart and some more news about She Matters Journal!

So you’re probably wondering when you were going to read another blog post from H4HH, well they are back! I do apologize for the unintentional sabbatical, but we’re picking up right where we left off with the Women of the Word series! The first of the series was “Eve: The Nature of Womankind, The Life-Giving Mother”. The latest piece is about two women are a little bit of a “compare and contrast”: one story, two wives, and two different perspectives. The newest blog “Sarah and Hagar: When Jealously Makes its Plan, Promise vs. Compromise”. The next one is a two-part segment “The Matriarchs: Women Birthed a Nation” in the works is also about three women: “Rebekah: A Mother’s Mischief and A Brother’s Deceit”, a mama who picked favorites between her sons and helped her son Jacob steal his twin brother’s birthright. The other women are Jacob’s two wives who happen to be sisters, “Rachel & Leah: A Tale of Two Sisters-Love & Duty “. If you get a chance, pop on over to “like” or “follow” our social media pages: Facebook & Pinterest ( search Hope For Her Heart Ministry), Twitter (@hope4herheart) and Instagram (@hopeforherheart). I also have a lot of new ideas and fresh perspectives, you’ll just have to wait and see! I would like to ask you ladies for your input, what are some topics and discussions you would like to see on Hope For Her Heart? Leave a comment on this post or email me at heatherhopeforherheart@gmail.com.

Lately, it has been super, crazy busy in life….sometimes a tiny bit overwhelming but the Lord is my strength! Since February, I was promoted to Assistant Director at the childcare center I work at. It has kept me extremely busy the past six months without a lot of training and hands-on learning. I have lost tow dear family members, my cousin Crystal in a car accident and my Uncle Earl in August to a long battle with cancer. In February we gained a new pastor at my home church. Since, April I have had the honor and blessing of being the Children’s Director at my church. Also, I’ve been helping plan a baby shower for my newest niece, Ava due to arrive in September, co-planning with my bestie Phyllis, a bridal shower for one of our dearest and best childhood friends, Joanna getting married in December, being a bridesmaid in my nephew’s wedding, (4 weddings between to attend from September-December!) helping out with VBS at church with Kailey & Kelsey, and also working with She Matters Journal (more about that in a minute!), and of course spending time with my family, friends, and my sweetheart Wes. I have not stopped writing, I’ve been working on material little bits at a time when inspiration comes. This season of life has also been so full of every emotion: from over the moon happy, joy, laughter through tears, stress, struggles, lessons, busyness, quiet time of restoring my soul, and so many answered prayers and so much goodness!

So, let me tell you about She Matters Journal. My cousin (more like a sister really) Bridgett started a subscription box a little over a year ago called She Matters Box-a monthly box of goodies and devotional gifts to help women grow in their relationship with Christ. Fast forward a year later, the “box” has now reformed and evolved into a quarterly journal called She Matters Journal. The very first fall issue is on the website now! You can order yours or gift someone you love with one. I have the blessing of working with a team talented and beautiful women: Bridgett Martin, Megan Goff, Erica Peake, Shannon Nicks, Danielle Morris, Marianne Martin, Lindsay Lybrand and now Katie Watson. Many stories of hope, testimonies, strategic bible study and journaling tips to dig deeper in the Word as well as plenty of space to answer reflection questions, and journal your thoughts and prayers. Order yours at http://www.shemattersjournal.com as well as cute shirts and tote bags!

There are so many ideas, hopes, dreams, and visions I have for Hope For Her Heart- the bigger picture. As I mentioned in my last blog article “There She Goes Dreaming…Again”, when you let God take hold of your dreams in His hands, He makes them bigger than you would’ve imagined. So, pray with me along this journey and tag along for the ride! I’m so thankful for each and every single one of you sisters!

-Love, Heather

 

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There She Goes…Dreaming Again. {a release and preview from the newest She Matters Journal}

There She Goes…Dreaming Again.

Have you ever had a dream? Not the kind that wakes you up at 2am or even the kind of fairy tale wishes like we dream up when were kids (thanks Disney, for making us all wish on stars). But a real, raw gut-wrenching, sparks a fire in your soul, and pulls at every nerve and fiber in your heart kind of dream? You can’t sleep, can’t think straight until you express it on paper or share it with someone, like a well-kept secret bubbling over and bursting at the seams. That kind of dream. According to Google, there are many different definitions. There are three that stood out to me: 1) an involuntary vision occurring to a person when awake. 2) A vision voluntarily indulged in while awake; daydream; reverie. 3) an aspiration; goal; aim: I love the emphasis on voluntary and involuntary, because sometimes your dreams take ahold of you and sometimes you have to grab ahold of them. An aspiration, a goal, a vision. Well for me, there was a dream that began a little over two years ago for me and has not let go of me ever since…all thanks to God.
This “dream project” or “vision” is something that God laid on my heart in the spring of 2015. He has not let me shake this idea loose from my heart or mind. After much prayer and a leap of faith that started as a small platform, I launched a blog ministry called “Hope for Her Heart” in June 2015. I have found that launching a blog to share and encourage others is the best way to express myself and spread the hope. What hope you ask? The hope found in Jesus Christ. The verse that God laid on my heart just kept whispering to me when I would try to lie down at night and it would keep me awake. I would be at work and daydream; it was a constant thought running through my mind. Hebrews 6:19 states, “This hope we have as an anchor of the soul, both sure and steadfast, and which enters the Presence behind the veil.” In this world, our hearts are hungry and our souls are searching. But for what? Something or someone to believe in, whether we realize it or not. The stranger on the street at the stoplight, the next door neighbor, the classmate behind you in your college, the girl whose locker is next to yours who gets bullied, the busy mommy with two toddlers in the Wal-Mart check-out line, the mom in the home room class who has PTA duty with you, the widowed elderly woman, the broken runaway pregnant teenager, the war-torn veteran struggling with PTSD, or even the family who sits on the same pew as you every Sunday. Each person has a story to tell, and each person needs someone to hear them. Searching for hope, something sacred, strong, and secure to hold onto. The Word itself says we have hope as an anchor for the soul. That hope is in Jesus, He’s sure and steadfast. He’s the one who tore the veil so we could enter His presence.
What defines you? Who defines you? Is it what you do that makes you who you are? You can be a doctor, lawyer, aunt, teacher, sister, musician, scientist, entrepreneur, manager, mom, daughter, coach, grandmother, or anything. We each wear multiple hats, because as women let’s face it…we are the queens of multitasking! Although multitasking can sometimes lead to overwhelm. Let’s just be honest for a minute, we could probably run circles around our male counterparts and coworkers backwards and in high heels! But of each role we play in our busy lives, every role is important but these roles aren’t what define you, the real you. These are things that drive and challenge you, and thrive to do what you know you have been called to do. Do you ever wonder why you feel so driven by and drawn to these certain passions?
Maybe you were born to be an artist using your God-given talents and passions for a great and beautiful purpose. You could be a lover of the classics, with a creative force inside you that can’t be tamed. You may have an eye for color or the aesthetics of natural beauty whether it’s abstract or not. You find beauty in everything, especially details. God is the maker of beautiful things, what a great way to glorify Him! You could have a distinct style and eye for fashion; you know what works and what doesn’t. You know how to match together a coordinated ensemble just with the snap of your fingers…and boom! You’re a fashionista! You could be called to be a famous designer. What could possibly be a better way to share about true beauty and modesty than using your inner passion for fashion? (See Erica’s story “Rags to Rubies” pg. )Do you have a love for science and how things work? Or what about a fascination with how the human body works? You may have the intelligence and dedication it takes to study medicine. Combine that with a love for people and wanting to help save lives, maybe you were born to be a doctor! God still works miracles in many ways, He might use you! Do you have a nurturing touch and giving heart that loves to care for others? You could be a nurse! If you have a passion for teaching others and helping them learn and grow, you could be a teacher! Has anybody ever told you that you’re “argumentative”? Use that feistiness for good! You may have a passion for debating and proving the right thing, and a way of creative crafting your words into solid logic. You can confidently defend what you know because you’ve done your homework and want to preserve justice. Maybe you were born to be a great lawyer.
There once was a man in the Old Testament, who was made fun of and called a dreamer by his own family. This man was Joseph. We see his story in Genesis as a young boy unfold into the plans that God unveiled before him in his dreams. The boy who dreamed became the man who lived out those dreams and visions. His own brothers resented him because of his God-given gift of prophetic dreams and interpretations, they hated him even more when they found out that he would be in authority one day. Joseph was beat up and picked on, thrown into a pit and left for dead, sold into slavery, and then his father was told he was dead. He was a slave, then a head servant, accused and thrown into jail, then set free only to become right hand man to the king. Through it all, Joseph remembered and never lost sight of his dreams.
Our dreams change throughout our lives as we grow and change. When I was a little girl I dreamed of being an Olympic figure skater or gymnast, and I had never taken gymnastics class or been on the ice at the point in my life. There was just something so graceful and fun about gliding or flying through the air. I also dreamt of being a country music star when I was little girl and that dream stayed with me well into my high school and early college years (probably because I fell head over heels in love with my guitar at 15 years old!). I wanted to go to college in Nashville and make in the music city. I still love music, I singing and playing but my dreams have changed obviously. I dreamed of being a fashion designer when I was about 10 years old, part of that dream became real when I designed my own pageant dress my sophomore year of high school for our Miss Falcon Pageant. But once again, my dreams changed. I never had a set plan or idea of what I wanted to do with my life at the pivotal time every teenager is excited for and nervous for at the same time…graduation! I knew I was going to college, but really who has it all figured out at 18 years old what they want to major in and do for the rest of their lives?! Not this girl! My dreams changed and my majors changed with them! I went from wanting to pursue a music career by majoring in music, to wanting to be a teacher pursuing music education (combining the two passions), then on to elementary education, but somehow one summer my heart and mind changed. It was the first summer I became a camp counselor at Camp Robinson, I was 19 years old. I had eight young girls in my care and counsel, to pray over them and play and guide them spiritually. I was at the altar praying over my kids and the camp deans, our local pastors were praying over us as counselors and said “if you feel the Lord calling you to ministry in your heart we’ll pray for you.” I felt the Lord whispering to me “You want to be a teacher; I want you to be a different kind of teacher.” Ministry is my first calling and passion, teaching is my second. So at age 20, I started at Columbia International University studying Youth Ministry and Family Culture, and a Bible degree. After many years of student teaching, volunteering, ministering, camp counseling, discipling and hanging out with kids and teens…I graduated in 2014. I have been a preschool assistant teacher, lead toddler teacher, and now an Assistant Director at a child care center. I am now currently serving as the Interim Children’s Director/Youth Director at my church. When I let my dreams and desires of my heart fall into God’s hands, I get to pursue both of my passions: teaching and ministry.
You may have a calling in your heart to be in ministry! If God calls you to teach or preach, then you go forth in that boldness to proclaim the Gospel! Ministry isn’t just in the church, or just being a “pastor”. God can use girls and women just like you, for anything! You may be called and prepared in your heart to be a loving mother and godly wife one day, or you may already be a wife and mother and want to grow more. Your ministry is your family! Maybe you’re an elderly lady, a seasoned and experienced woman of virtue and integrity that can pour wisdom and discernment to ladies of this next generation. Don’t put ministry in some type of stereotypical box, or believe that there is some cookie-cutter form of a career! Ministry is what you make it, the mission field is everywhere. As my friend Megan once said “Ministry is not a scary word!” No matter where you are in your, whether you think your mediocre minimum wage job as a cashier at the grocery store or Chick-Fil-A like I was; you make such a difference in the way you carry yourself and interact with others. You make that being a stay at home mom, or a caretaker of an elderly loved one that your “job” isn’t a big deal or that it will change the world. Guess what? You are making a difference in your loved ones life by compassion and care. And yes you little mama, you are responsible for shaping and forming the mind and protecting the heart of your little flock-your children. You’re ministry has already begun; God starts it from day one we just have to meet Him in the middle of our mess to realize it. I encourage you to step into your mission field every day with boldness!
God promises in Psalm 37:4, “Delight yourself in the Lord and He will give you the desires of your heart.” The dreams and desires that He plants in your heart, the Holy Spirit soaked ambition that’s encoded in your DNA is what HE uses to fulfill HIS purposes, all part of His greater plan. A plan greater than one we can devise for ourselves. Your goals and dreams that you set for yourself maybe well equipped, detailed, and thought out however, if we don’t put our dreams and desires in God’s hands instead of our own then they are in vain.
Just like every woman and girl is created differently; your life, your purpose, and your dreams are all different! Guess what else?! It’s okay to not have it figured out! Life is a beautiful unfolding plan. Jeremiah 29:11 says “For I know the plans I have for you, says the Lord; plans for a hope and a future not for destruction.” When the prophet Jeremiah wrote this, the Israelites were in a time of captivity and exile. They felt stuck and trapped, and felt as if they had been waiting forever for something to happen! God kept His promises, and He still does! He will use the waiting period to prepare you for the big things He has planned for you. It’s who you are in Christ that defines you, not what you do…what you do is what drives you to be all that He has called you to be! Go ahead girlfriend, walk in your purpose! (*snap snap*)

So now it’s your turn…here’s your chance to write down your dreams and chase them! Here are some questions for your heart and mind.

Write Your Story (for a little added inspiration, check out one of my favorite songs “Write Your Story” by Franscesca Battastelli)

*What are some of your dreams you have for your future?

*What are somethings you dreamed of being as kid? What did you want to be “when you grow up”?

*What is the one thing you wish you could just turn over to God and let Him have control over?

*Spend some time reflecting on Psalms 34:7 and Jeremiah 29:11 write down your prayer.

*What are some practical steps you can take to reach your dreams?

CHECK OUT THIS STORY AND MANY MORE OF MY DEAR SISTERS ON THE SHE MATTERS TEAM!
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Go support Bridgett’s dream and mine! She Matters Journal. Headshot photo credit goes to the amazing Lindsay Lybrand! Lindsay Anne Photography (check out her work on Facebook, Lindsay Anne Photography. https://www.facebook.com/lindsayannephoto

The Dreamer, Heather

Just a lil bio from yours truly, the author.creator.founder: Heather Hutto

My Name is Heather and this is why I Started “Hope For Her Heart”

Welcome to “Hope For Her Heart”! I would like to take a moment to introduce myself. My name is Heather. I’m 25 years old and a May 2014 graduate of Columbia International University (also known as CIU, shout out GO RAMS!) where I obtained and earned a Bachelor’s of Science in Youth Ministry & Family Culture with a specialization in Family-Based Ministry. I am the Girls Ministry Director aka “Girls of Grace” at my church since October 2014. This ministry includes all girls 1st-7th grade. I have also helped lead, mentor, teach many different ages in children’s and youth ministry at my church and throughout our summer camps for many years now. I work two part time jobs, one at Chick-fil-a and the other at Family Christian Store. I thoroughly love working for two great companies, but my heart and passion is teaching and ministry to children and teens. Ministry has been one of the greatest “teachable moments” of my life, it’s humbling and hard. It’s a beautiful way to get know and love people the way we are called to love. Ministry can be anywhere and everywhere. Open your eyes as well as your heart and you find where you are called to minister to others!

Here are a few little snippets about me. I am blessed to have been raised two wonderful godly parents who have taught me so much, always encouraged me, and prayed for me. I’m so grateful for them. I’m the youngest of three daughters. My sisters are great, I love them! I’m an aunt to six awesome nephews who are really more like my brothers since we grew up together. I am also a “great aunt” to three sassy nieces and four rambunctious nephews, all of them are just as sweet and loving as they are mischievous! I am a Clemson Tigers fan as well as a huge Kentucky Wildcats fan! GO BIG BLUE! I am definitely a Southern girl to a T…I love college football and basketball, sweet tea goes good with everything, country music is three chords and tells stories of the heart, anything camo, pearls and cowboy boots go with anything, flip flops are a necessity, and if it doesn’t move monogram it! Number one southern lady rule, always use your manners and be classy, but never afraid to be sassy! I love being outdoors, a true country girl at heart! I love to fish. I enjoy playing my guitar and piano. I consider music and art one of God’s greatest gifts to me personally; it is my outlet, my expression, my escape, as well as a way of worship and connecting with God. I am determined and dedicated when it comes to hard work and reaching my goals but I also love to cut up, goof around with family and friends, and I have a crazy sense of humor. I love to have fun. Life shouldn’t be so serious all the time. I have always had a passion for fine arts and performing arts. Ever since I could talk, I have been singing and I love it. In addition, whether it is poetry, short stories, songs and lyrics, or just writing thoughts and prayers in my journal, I absolutely love to write. When I start writing, the words keep flowing from my mind, heart and soul (another reason I started this blog!) I also have always had an interest and passion for drawing, sketching, and photography. Art is so therapeutic!

I love people, and try my best to see everyone through the eyes of love and grace, as Jesus calls us to “love thy neighbor as thyself”. The greatest commandment, aka number one life rule “Love God. Love People.”, simple as that. I love to talk and build relationships, but I love to listen twice as much as I talk! That’s why God gave you two ears and one mouth! Everyone has a story to tell, every life and heart is different but we are all created by a magnificent and beautiful Creator, our Father. Now that you know a little bit about me, I’d love to know more about you as well! Feel free to share stories, testimonies, thoughts and comments! This is a community and fellowship of sisters in Christ!

The purpose of this blog ministry: Hope for Her Heart, is just exactly what it means. Simple truths that give hope to women and girls everywhere. Who is she? Whose heart is being sustained by hope? Hope, here is something for every woman at every stage in their life. Encouragement. Love. A place to grow and share with other ladies. Every woman has worth, and needs encouragement, for SHE is a princess, a daughter of the King. This is HOPE FOR HER HEART. Eventually, one day I would love to build this simple blog ministry into a non-profit organization and ministry where women and girls can work together, caring for the needs of other women and girls who are hurting and struggling. Pray for this ministry, and I pray that it encourages YOU!

-In Christ Love, your sister Heather

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