My Seven Deadly Sins

Many of us know them, religious or not. Regardless of our admittance, we all have committed at least one (prob more than that) of the seven deadly sins. Here is the breakdown:

Wrath: an angry emotional response due to feeling threatened

Example of the week: My roommate called me out for an event not to be mentioned, in front of some visiting friends. In the comfort of my own home, I felt threatened and reciprocated the sass with a retort of my own.

Greed: inordinate desire to possess wealth, goods, or objects far beyond what’s needed for survival and comfort

Example of the week: I really want that fat paycheck, but instead I am only getting $4 due to other people not paying. Come on people. I depend on you.

Sloth: spiritual or emotional apathy; also known as laziness

Example of the year: I don’t want to go to school, do my homework, or go to church.

Pride: inflated sense of one’s personal status

Example of the day: This directly relates to my greedy needs of green cash money. I was recently told I’ve made history for selling ads this past week. Feeling all high on my horse, I expected a bigger paycheck. Still hotheaded about this.

Lust: intense emotion or feeling of want; can take in any form such as lust for knowledge, sex, or power

Example of the week: Well, this is a little awkward. Sorry I want to be loved, it was Valentine’s weekend.

Envy: feeling a lack of a superior quality, achievement, or possession; usually wishes to inflict misfortune on others

Example of the week: I envy a particular person’s wit and humor and wish that it would rub off on me and vanish from this person’s outstanding vocabulary.

Gluttony: over-indulgence to the point of extravagance or waste

Example of the week: Chocolate. Enough said.

Tah dah! Now I’ve shared how wonderful (terrible?) of a person I am. I’m impressed if you read all that. Props to you. However, my post today isn’t necessarily about THE Seven Deadly Sins, but MY Seven Deadly Sins.

  1. Greed: already explained above
  2. Gossip: a girl does what any girl would. read Cosmo and talk crap
  3. Gamble: nope, not with a dice or cards or sports, gamble with people’s emotions
  4. Careless: my motivation for school and work have been flushed down a toilet
  5. Self-centered: my way or the highway
  6. Shy: I understand that this isn’t usually seen as a “sin” per-say, but I shy away from commitment, accomplishments, and unknowns
  7. Poor body image: chocolate + scale = oh no!

My goal for the week, month, year, whatever, is to improve on myself and chip away at each of my deadly sins. Hasta La Vista Sin City! So naturally, like any Pinterest-obsessed 20-something-year-old, I found some tips and tricks to kick my booty into gear and shape up. Get ready for some kooky solutions!

  1. For greed, eat one plain avocado without salt.
  2. For gossiping, tape your mouth shut with zebra pink duct tape.
  3. For gambling, flush your phone down the toilet.
  4. For carelessness, type with only one finger.
  5. For self-centeredness, make a cake, but don’t eat any of it.
  6. For shyness, raise your hand whenever the teacher asks a question.
  7. For poor body image, throw away half your closet.

Alright, alright, I’m kidding, but I would love some serious advice. Please comment below if you have any ideas or want some advice from me or other followers.

Monday Blues, but Posi-Vibes

I’ve been having a rough transition getting back into the school grove since Fall Break. I’m feeling a little unmotivated, stressed out, and blah. And I am seriously questioning where I am going in life. What am I even good at? Why did I pick this major? Will I ever actually get a job? Anyway, my overthinking will be the death of me. So today… I’ve decided to give us all a little motivation. Sending positive vibes your way.

1. Drinking tea makes you feel better, remember that. If you don’t believe me check out this page and also check out this photo that explains what tea cures what problem! qsOU4D7

2. Tell yourself you are creative, important, and are interested in creating a radiant future. And believe that you can.

3. Tell yourself “I have friends that love me.” Dig deeper and look at the small things that make you feel better and be a little more thankful to those around you who support you in little ways or big ways too. Maybe write them a small thank you note.

4.Congratulate yourself for your own accomplishments. You aced that super hard test! You are a star! You didn’t do as well as you thought? Who cares? You tried. Gold star! Did you get out of bed today? I am so proud of you.

5. Say it aloud. “Fear is a feeling; it cannot hold me back.”

6. Know that you can control your thoughts. It takes practice. It takes time. And let me tell you it sure as hell takes a lot of energy, but you can do it.

7. Just think. By reading this you’re already taking a step in the right direction. You are learning so much more about yourself and are appreciating life in little bits. And that is rad. It really is!

8. Exercise to maintain your physical and mental health. Just do it.

9. Somewhere, anywhere, I don’t care where. Write it. Write I am worthy. Write it on your body, in your planner, in your wallet, on your ceiling. Seriously, but if you can please write it in sharpie.

10. Lastly, write all of this on your mirror or somewhere that you look at everyday. Write this in your own words. Look up more. Make up your own. Just make sure to remind yourself, daily, that you are beautiful, wonderful, and loved.

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P.S. This is the verse of the day. I just looked it up and I am so glad it complements my post today.

The word of God is living and active. Sharper than any double-edged sword, it penetrates even to dividing soul and spirit, joints and marrow; it judges the thoughts and attitudes of the heart.
—Hebrews 4:12

Love,

Tara

It’s a Story to Tell…

It’s a story to tell… it’s the motto of the day. 

            These past few weeks have been filled with adventure, insanity, and chaos. It has been crowded with set backs and terrifying moments, but significantly outnumbered by the infinite amount of incredibly blessed moments. The beginning of each year introduces a new rhythm that sets the pace for the upcoming semester. I have a feeling that this year is going to be unbelievable in a hectic, but good sort of way. Here is long-story-short breakdown of how things have been going so far.

            Where did I leave off? How about I just start off with recruitment.

No surprise here, recruitment was off the wall crazy. It was way more fun than I thought it would be so props to my girls Aubree and Kelly for being the best recruitment chairs ever. Workweek and recruitment week are the two most insane weeks of the year. It is crazier than spring break…. For those of you who don’t get to experience the whole TCU recruitment process, you have no idea what its like underneath it all. It is incredibly hard to explain. Like when you ask someone who studied abroad (because like everyone did this summer), “how was it?” and they can only respond with one-word answers like “amazing.” How would I describe recruitment? Crazy. But it is so much more than that. Imagine cheer camp mixed with boot camp combined with an uncanny amount of estrogen. There is no real way to explain this week of drama and excitement. All I can tell you is that THETA is the best sorority and my sisters are truly talented and remarkable girls. TLAM!

            Next, school begins… of course. My schedule really couldn’t get much better. I mean two night classes AND a Friday class. It’s awesome. Alright, even though my calendar is not all that great, so far my classes have proved to be promising. Class is my favorite place to meet new friends. It gives me chances to have unattached relationships. I like knowing people that no one else knows. I don’t mean for that to sound creepy in any way, but I hope some of you will understand. For me I like it because it gives me a new viewpoint and perspective of everything that’s going on around me. It keeps me balanced and open-minded. I like that

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            With that in mind, I would like to share my indescribable experience in the music industry thanks again to my good friend Aubree who always provides us with a good challenge. This week’s was a music video. A legitimate one, kind of. An MTV2 music video that we were asked to come be a part of. I will spare you the details, but share some pictures that will explain the “it’s a story to tell moment.” It is one worthy of being told in person, but hard to explain in written words. I guess you’ll have to tune in on MTV2 to catch yo girls making a cameo in Willstrumental’s “Bout It Bout It.”

        Mixed with all this craziness with new beginnings and hectic schedules, I have found some lovely silver linings. A worthy list of breathtaking and delightful experiences. Through these past weeks I have strengthened relationships and bonds with new and old friends. I have been reminded about why I chose Theta and why I chose TCU and my friends. I have entered the long path of classes needed to complete my major. I have met with friends and family that I haven’t seen in forever and I finally got to settle into my new house with my unique and awesome roommates. Speaking of houses and family and friends, I have one more little adventure to share.

            Lucky for me I was able to travel down to San Antonio to my grandparent’s house to see part of my extended fam. Cousins and cousins and more cousins and aunts and uncles. The whole shebang. You’d think it would be one of those over the top family gatherings, and you’d be right because it was exactly that. I can’t believe that a group of 20-something-year-olds would get together and wreak havoc. How many girls does it take to open a trundle bed, to finish a basket of candy, to overflow the pool with an abundance of colorful floaties. It was nuts how many absurd activities brought us together. We wrapped up each night with looking at old photos from when we were little kids and then we would begin the next day with reenacting the pictures.

            During this great weekend, I was overwhelmed with all the fun and awfully tired from the sun. I was exhausted and unable to comprehend the call I had received from my dad. You can imagine how unbelievably shocked and panicked I was when I found out my mom was seriously ill in another country. I tried to stay calm and show how brave I was, but that night I crashed a little earlier and prayed a little harder. I prayed my little heart out for her. Thank you to everyone who sent her out in their prayer groups. Cid, you are doing great and have a strong support group that never stops praying for you. I love you! It’s your “story to tell.” 

 

Finally, throughout this entire crazy and emotional short journey I was able to experience some precious moments of solitude (believe it or not) and enjoy alone time with my homeboy, Jesus. My biggest “oh snap” moment was when I reread my Jesus Calling book for the reading of August 29. Yes, I’ve read it multiple times to understand it and then believe it. I’ll leave you with that. Remember through all your craziness, there is always an anchor. Find it.

 

“DEMONSTRATE YOUR TRUST IN ME by sitting quietly in My Presence. Put aside all that is waiting to be done, and refuse to worry about anything. This sacred time together strengthens you and prepares you to face whatever the day will bring. By waiting with Me before you begin the day’s activities, you proclaim the reality of My living Presence. This act of faith–waiting before working–is noted in the spirit world, where your demonstration of trust weakens principalities and powers of darkness.

The most effective way to resist evil is to draw near to Me. When you need to take action, I will guide you clearly through My Spirit and My Word. The world is so complex and overstimulating that you can easily lose your sense of direction. Doing countless unnecessary activities will dissipate your energy. When you spend time with me, I restore your sense of direction. As you look to Me for guidance, I enable you to do less but accomplish more.”

 

Luke 12:22-26; Ephesians 6:12; Proverbs 16:3

 

Enjoy your week!

Tara McQueen

A Powerful Playlist

So my friend’s college fellowship has established a theme for their 2013-2014 academic year. It’s called Personal Spiritual Playlist, which is essentially a “playlist” (or set) of “songs” (or activities) under different “genres” (or spiritual disciplines) that bring 1. joy and 2. me closer to God. 

1. Prayer/ Worship
. Continue finding bible verses that directly affect me per each day. For instance when I am feeling alone and scared I pick up my bible and read Psalm 23. I write down a few words that remind me that God is always there for me and then I continue to write a small prayer thanking him for his guidance and asking for his forgiveness and help for the upcoming day. I have never done this before, but this past week and a half have seemed much more lovely with God by my side.


2. Service
. Similar to my friend’s service I plan to fast for one day a month. For me it is to act less selfish in life and prove my will power to be a strong believer of God. I am choosing to do this on the 13th of every month, as it has an important meaning in my life and I need God to always be with me on that day to give me strength and hope.

3. Obedience. 
I plan on keeping my friends on track with our weekly routine of going to church. I vow to be a strong believer and behave like a Christian rather than just saying that I am one.

4. Rejuvenation
. I recently have been cleared by my doctor to run. I find that running is typically one of my best stress reducers. I will encourage myself to “run it out” when I feel that I can’t handle the pressure of the world. Like my friend I too enjoy writing, whether it be for this blog or anything else really.

5. Fun
. I think this may be my hardest challenge on this playlist. I wish there was a secret recipe for fun, but because there isn’t I am deciding to make one. I’ll keep you updated when it starts looking like it is complete. Wish me luck!

6. Belief. When I find my self in times of trouble I need to remember to hold my wrist. Feel God’s presence there on that cross and remind myself that I am never alone and I can make it through whatever situation that comes my way. Believe in Him and believe in myself.

7. Heaven. I promise to be the best angel I can be. I promise to listen to and help my friends and family, be there for them through thick and thin. I hope I can go above and beyond and constantly remind them how much they mean to me.

Perfection

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Polished nails. Professionally blown out hair. Tanned skin. Toned Stomach. Proper posture. Intelligent. Sophisticated. Poised. Respected. Ambitious.

 We strive to personify our own perspective of perfection. We can’t deny it. I do it all the time. As much as I hate to admit I care what other people think. It is a form of security to get validation from our peers. A gold star in other words. Am I living for myself or are my friends puppeteers gradually stringing me on from one impossible task to another?  My precious alone time is the single ounce of freedom I get hiding from this discombobulated world.  It is the one place I am not looking for the ever so lovely gold star. Without the intruding thoughts of others and that is when I am content. Alone. I suppose that seems rather depressing.  I absolutely hated the idea of being lonely. I have recently discovered that being alone has a small relation to being lonely. In fact I feel more content and secure. I am not obsessing over the small things that dictate my life. When I am alone it as if everything is possible even the ability to change some of the things I can’t control. I am absorbing the solitude and letting go of the expectations.

As soon as I unravel from my cocoon of self-worth, I step out into the intimidating universe before me. I enter this judgmental door to the outsiders. I let in all the criticism, pessimism, and nihilism that society holds us with. How silly and presumptuous are we to have the audacity to even try to label this world and their assumptions and societal views of perfection. We can’t be perfect at everything. We have to remember to share ourselves with the actions and fill ourselves with the thoughts that better suit us and not anyone else. We can try to want to love running or rigorously working out till our bodies ache, but do we really love running or the idea of it. We should no longer pretend to be something we are not. It can’t be healthy to pretend in front of ourselves. We have the ability to love whatever we want and we are capable of making our own decisions and following our own plans for living the way we ought to.

If you are a believer of Christ I have a word of advice that I was blessed with hearing the other day. If we are followers of societal nature what is holding us back from following the Lord’s plans for our future? We may not seem perfect in the eyes of our peers or even our own eyes; but the truth is we are perfect in God’s eyes and that is always enough.