Liberate 2013 – Graces Covers My Idolatry

Liberate is a Christian conference done once a year at Coral Ridge Presbyterian Church. Rick and I went again this year. You can find my post about last year’s conference by clicking here. If I am being honest, I enjoyed last year’s better, but this is not to take anything away from this year’s. Last year’s might mean more to me because it was my first time and it was a huge awakening. This year, though, was a grand reminder I needed.

It was all about grace, as always, as it always should be. Who can get tired of that message when you know how much of a sinner you are and how much God loves you despite it. That’s an amazing grace!

I’m not going to go into too much detail of the conference per-say, but I will relate it and apply it to my personal life. I hope this helps you just as much.

Lately  I  we have been going through what many would call a “dry season”. I say we not to speak on Rick’s behalf, but when I go through something, he goes through it as well. Whether good or bad, that’s marriage. We just got married a few months ago, Rick works like crazy at his job and with his own personal company (it’s tax season), I’m going to school full-time, our weekends have been booked this entire year thus far, and in the midst of that we try to find time to be together. We are just crazy busy. That’s a good enough excuse, right? Wrong.

I have become the idol of my heart. No, not Rick my idol, but Jas has become the idol of Jas. Self-obsorbed in my feelings, my wants, my needs, and what Rick needs to do in order to be a good husband and satisfy me. ME! ME! ME! This is where grace comes in.

Is my behavior acceptable. No, it’s not. Does God love me any less for it? No, He does not. That’s grace. He came to die to set me free. To set me free of needing to be accepted, of needing things done my way, of needing to be in control. He came to take my place, because there was no way I could live the life and death that Jesus did. That’s grace, and through that grace I need no longer worry. The death on the cross is the completed work of Christ on my behalf. COMPLETED! It covers past, present, and future sins. He died for this very moment. My moment of selfishness and idolatry.

That is the never-old, never-not-needed message of the gospel that I heard throughout this weekend. When I sin His grace goes further. Though I’ve known this for quite some time now, it’s a whole other challenge to believe it and having faith in this.

This experience will past and my high will die, but His word remains forever. As I try to rest on that, I’ll fail at it daily. It’ll be okay though. I can dust myself off knowing His grace has set me free.

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Our Valentine’s… Washington D.C.

This past long weekend was spent in DC for us. It was my Valentine’s gift and our first stop to conquering the US of A! I must say, it was so beautiful. The antique style architecture had me falling in love. The people their are extremely kind, unlike Miami, and we got to see snow for the first time together! From the monument, to memorials, to museums, and the nightlife/food, it was just all around awesome. Way too cold at times, it was still a great change of pace soaking up all the history. Here are some photos of the trip.

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Epcot!

This past weekend Rick &I traveled the world… through a Disney theme park. We went to Epcot for a friend of ours birthday. It was my first time there, and our first trip as a married couple without counting our honeymoon (Rick loves to mention all of our first). I had been eager to go since I missed out a high school senior trip to Epcot due to illness. No surprise there. It was pretty cool to travel to the different countries and explore what they are best known for. We shop, ate, drank, and of course rode all the rides. Here are some pictures from our trip…

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Vacations All I’ve Ever Wanted

One of the things Rick and I immediately spoke about when we got married is traveling and taking many vacations during our first year. You know, before the babies come along. Like most people, I really want to travel the world. Our little honeymoon mishap was a HUGE blessing in disguise (see Mrs. Vazquez Is Back for a quick reminder). We got a ton of airline vouches. With that, we had decided to go to Europe for 10 days for our one year anniversary. I was ecstatic, but soon realized there was no way I could take that many days off during my internship. I realized I had to put my dream trip to Europe on hold. Though sad, Rick and I got another idea that I am just as excited about.

This year we are going to be traveling the US! In the end, I want to check out my backyard before I go across the world. Some places on our mind is the northeast, (New York, New Jersey, Boston, etc.) California, and Vegas. First on our list is Washington D.C. next week! That’s right, next week! Rick got time off and we decided to start our adventure. I must say, I am BEYOND excited! I have been dying to see D.C. since I couldn’t go on my fifth grade trip. I am fascinated by all things political and historical. I get to see it all up close and enjoy some real winter weather. Time to go shopping for some coats and scarves!

I’ll post a blog on our trip with photos once it’s over. For now, I’ll be leaving to Epcot for my friend’s birthday for the weekend to travel the world that way. Ha!

Happy Chrismahanukwanzakah!

I am going to cram all the holidays into one post. Yes, thats Thanksgiving, Christmas, and New Years.

Okay, so Christmas was a month ago and Thanksgiving even longer than that! This post is old news, but I am trying to catch up and stay up to date! If you’re over the holidays, then you can skip this one, but if you’re so curious to see how our first holiday season went for us, then stick around!

Thanksgiving: We always split our days in two. Lunch at Rick’s sister’s and dinner at my mom’s. It’s been this way for as long as I can remember. Then the next day we do a Friendsgiving, which was at our house..

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Christmas: We do a yearly secret santa gift exchange amongst our friends. We spend a little time at my mom’s for Christmas Eve and then the rest of the night at home with Rick’s family where we open gifts. Christmas morning was spent at home and then some time at my mom’s. I was lucky enough to get the guitar I have been wanting for YEARS! Time to become the next Taylor Swift…

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New Years: We decided to throw a party at our house with our friends and family…

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That’s our first holiday season married in a nutshell!

Don’t Call It A Comeback!

I’ve been hear for a year!

I am so sorry it has been over a month since I last blogged. I got very caught up with the holidays, working on our house, and going back to school full-time. Rick & I have truly been nonstop! I have a lot to catch up on and to continue to blog about, I just hope my crazy schedule and busy life gives me enough time to keep this thing up. I would sure love to! I hope to post a REAL blog post tomorrow.

Until then…

  • I made a slight change to our title and added OUR. I wanted it to be more personal.
  • I also changed our header photo. It is a much more recent photo of us, and it’s the most important day of our lives together. It was the day we decided to do this thing forever.
  •  As for Rick &I, we couldn’t be happier and we are doing great. 🙂

Oh, the places we will go…

I really can’t believe it’s already been a month since I have gotten married! Time is flying by so fast. I know it’s just a month, but I still can’t believe I am married!

How has the first month been you may (or may not) ask? AWESOME! Marriage is awesome. We haven’t even fought yet, which is a miracle for us! Haha! I know this is just the beginning and hard times will come but for now we are letting the good times roll. I can honestly say it has been the best decision I have made thus far. We are both just so happy…

Had I not gotten married, I would have been graduating today. Sad? A little. I can’t lie, but my time will come. I think every decision I have made to make Rick and I work and be happy has been worth it. I have time to study and graduate, but to be in a stand still miserable relationship because you know you’re ready for the next step? AIN’T NOBODY GOT TIME FOR THAT! Everything happens for a reason, and though I would have NEVER pictured my life to turn out this way, I’m glad it did.

I love you Rick. Happy 1 month anniversary. To making it a year! ❤

A Year Ago Today

A year ago today, Rick got down on one knee and asked me to be his wife. Yes, a year ago! Time has really passed by quickly, and it has me being nostalgic.

I had no plans on getting married ever, especially at 22! I just thought that life wasn’t for me and I wanted to save myself from any trouble. Obviously, God did a huge work in me to be able to say yes to Rick, but the work wasn’t complete until we were officially engaged. That’s when I was really able to let go of the past, be happy with my present, and look forward to the future. So if you are anything like how I was, I just want to say there is hope. Just remember, love covers a multitude of sins.

I’ve also looked back on the time Rick and I were engaged. Everyone said to enjoy this time, and we did when we had our parties, but the planning… WOW! To be completely honest, it was a nightmare. What I learned and my advice to you is don’t have a long engagement! When you ask and she says yes, it is because you both know you want to spend the rest of your lives together. If you know, then get to it! Making the process long just makes the frustration longer. Everything just stretches out and takes forever and anger starts to build. It wasn’t such a fun journey and it was extremely difficult, but so worth it!

Now Rick and I are married! We know it won’t be perfect and at time it’ll be extremely difficult, but love covers a multitude of sins. We know we are going to fail each other, but we still must love on each other and remember the covenant we made before God.

Our Photographer: Ricky Stern!

I don’t want to make this post just about my pictures. I really want to give credit where credit is due.

Pictures was our #1 priority when it came down to the wedding. Besides Rick and I becoming one, it would be the only thing that would last after the wedding. We are both also really big on having nice pictures. We wanted someone PERFECT who can capture the most important day of our lives together beautifully. I know PERFECT is a big word to live up to, but I think he was just that.

We went with Ricky Stern Photography. He is not only amazingly talented behind the camera, but has such an amazing personality that he is not too scared to show. He made everyone feel so comfortable and had us all laughing. Aside from being amazing on the wedding day, I was able to see all of my pictures in one week! What a quick turn around time. I then got my DVDs full of pictures a couple days later. ALMOST 700 PICTURES! That is just unheard of. All of this for an amazing price too! Seriously, doesn’t this all just sound PERFECT!? I 100% recommend him to everyone! He will be my go-to guy whenever I need a photographer.

This is what Ricky Stern had to say about us (and a few of our pictures) on his blog:

http://miamiphotographer.net/blog/2012/11/25/miami-wedding-photographer-jasmine-ricky-at-sunset-cove-and-club-of-knights/

Finally, a glimpse at my day through the lens of Ricky Stern. Every time I look back, I can’t help but smile…

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Our Wedding Trailer

For our wedding Rick &I knew we just had to have a videographer. We just wanted something hard copy and we love trailers. After the wedding we would realize it’s much more important than cool. There was so much we missed that now we will get to see it all.

Choosing a videographer was a VERY difficult decision. Not only did we realize it cost an arm and a leg, but we wanted the best quality and good work. That is when we came across Mr. Alan Button of Artistry Wedding Films. We were recommended to him by a friend, whose wedding trailer we LOVED! We ended up going with him.

He is an extremely hard worker, talented, flexible, and really good at what he does. We are so happy we went with him and we now have something we can share with all those who couldn’t make it.

Anyways, here is our trailer which we can honestly say we LOVE! We hope you love it too.