Today, Jena speaks to us about how sharing helps us grow and her own journey of sharing, the book that is helping her wrestle with her fears, the thing that makes God’s voice quieter in our lives, and an incredible list of books she recommends.
A one-sentence bio of yourself: I’m tenacious, passionate, and love to learn and grow.
Inspiring biblical passage of the moment: “But whoever listens to me will dwell secure and will be at ease without dread of disaster.” Proverbs 1:33
Spiritual growth focus at the moment: Fighting fear with faith, and feeling my feelings! Whoa. That’s a lot of “f’s”!
“Fighting fear with faith, and feeling my feelings!”
Profession: I’m very left and right-brained, so professionally I work as a Business Development Director for a Financial Planning Firm. My degree is in Finance and Management, and as of June, I have worked in the finance industry for ten years! I’m also a business owner, so I also “work” as a professional photographer. I enjoy it so much, it’s hard to consider it work even though being a business owner is arduous work.
When did you first encounter God? I grew up going to church with my grandma, and I recall first encountering God when I was about 5th grade. It wasn’t until I was in my 20’s that I started to live for him.
What has helped you grow spiritually in this season? I started my blogging/IG journey in January and taking what I’m learning and sharing it with others has helped me to grow, in this season. It helps me process and allows the truths to sink deeper into my heart. I also love the fact I’ll have what God is teaching me documented to look back to in the future.
“Taking what I’m learning and sharing it with others has helped me to grow, in this season”
Just read/currently reading (and what has it taught you?): I’m often reading multiple books at a time. I’ve thankfully improved on my reading habits this year so currently reading the following books.
The Artisan Soul: Crafting Your Life Into a Work of Art Book, by Erwin McManus. This book is rocking my world when it comes to creativity. Learning how God has created me to be creative and redefining creativity in light of God’s design has brought me such new life and freedom!
Fierce Faith: A Woman’s Guide to Fighting Fear, Wrestling Worry, and Overcoming Anxiety, by Alli Worthington. My husband is a law enforcement officer, and started night shift at the beginning of the year which has brought up fears I’ve been wrestling and trying to fight with faith. This book has helped to provide practical tools and gospel truths to help in this season.
Multiply, by Francis Chan. Discipleship is a topic God is helping me to grow in. I’m apart of IF: Discipleship Collective and have been reading this book as part of the learning material.
Growing Kingdom Character: Practical, Intentional Tools for Developing Leaders, by Tom Yeakley. I’ve read this book before but going through it a second time. One of my favorite books when it comes to digging deep into Kingdom Character. SO many scripture references and practical ways to grow. I think this book will be one I refer back to often.
Women Code, by Alisa Vitti. One of my many passions includes health and wellness. I’ve been learning so much about hormones and health from FloLiving, and this is a book written by the founder, and it’s SO helpful to learn about how the female body works and ways to encourage health. I love all the resources they put out, and her book is chalked full of education on the topic!
Top three essentials: My Bible. My planner. My phone.
How did God speak to you recently? I started The Artisan Soul book this past week, and he’s been speaking a ton to me in regards to creativity. I’ve come to learn if I seek to draw close to God he will draw close to me. He wants to be abundant and is willing to pour out His wisdom in our life. It often is sin in my world that makes His voice quiet in my life. James 4:8 is a verse that brings light to this concept for me. “Come close to God, and God will come close to you. Wash your hands, you sinners; purify your hearts, for your loyalty is divided between God and the world.”
“It often is sin in my world that makes His voice quiet in my life.”
Hobby: I have self-diagnosed hobby A.D.D., but currently, I enjoy Bible journaling, lettering or project life, when I have the extra time to create. But don’t hold me to that, I’m sure I’ll find something new to try and fall in love with before too long!
Top three practical tips for staying spiritually strong: Studying God’s word daily. Create a habit and be fierce to stick with it.
Surrendering your heart to God. The world will call our heart away from God. Surrender to Him and allow him to be what you desire most.
Submitting your will to the Spirit. The Spirit is alive and active inside of every believer. Submitting what I want to do to Him to lead and guide the way builds so much faith. Listen to the Spirit, do what He’s calling you to, and He will strengthen your faith, every time.
Your favorite person in scripture? Jesus is my favorite person, so I pick him.
What do you want people to learn about God when they look at you? I see God taking a message one person is sharing and tailoring it into something particular to what that person needs in that season. So, you can say I want people to learn whatever God has for them.
Favorite season? Summer! I love the sun and being able to be outside on a daily basis!
Favorite holiday? I’d probably say New Years Day or my birthday. I love fresh starts and the beginning of a new year. I feel like both of those days gives me the opportunity to be introspective and dream about the future!
A dream you have? To build a training course to help people with life planning and developing their One Beautiful Life with Jesus as their foundation.
A special tradition you and your family engage in or keep: I’m not one who connects with any traditions. Which I think this is a good thing with my husband’s job we don’t get traditional holidays. Life tends to always look so different each year for us, so I find holding strong to traditions end up setting us up with expectations that can’t be met, and I see often God wants to create new things, so I hold those things very loosely and let Him lead the way.
A question you will ask when you get to heaven? I’m an inquisitive person and often like to take in everything. I can’t think of a specific question I’d ask, I think I’d end up taking everything in and seeing where it led me.
Things you want to raise awareness about: I feel like God has given me a passion for the mission of living our One Beautiful Life well. Living it for Jesus’ name which is an upside down kingdom. I want to raise awareness about living boldly for him and living this life, while it will never be perfect, with excellence in a way that gives God the glory and points people to him.
What is on your nightstand? My “war binder” which is my prayer notebook (this is my YouTube video that walks through it), a big stack of books I’m reading, some bobby pins and earrings.
Define Christianity in a sentence: Surrendering your heart to Jesus and responding in faithful obedience to the Spirits work in my heart.
For more Jena:
Until next time, keep witnessing!