And the WINNER is…

Congratulations, Lindsey Stevens from Georgia! She is the winner of Noonday’s Day 15 of the Blog Train Giveaway! What item did she win?! Great question! The beautiful Mukisa Necklace:

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The Mukisa is handmade by our artisans at African Style in Uganda. I love this necklace! The colors are amazing and this necklace is so fun to pair with Noonday’s Stacked Arrows necklace and/or the Escalera Block bracelet

What’s on your Noonday Collection Valentine’s wish list?

Life’s Cakestand

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What a perfect opportunity to get on this Noonday Blog Train! It’s my first blog in…ahem…six months! Six months! It’s not that I haven’t wanted to blog/write/post. It’s just life has been a little fuller 6 months with exciting, scary and new seasons in the life of our family.

In July my husband made a career transition from church high school ministry to Young Life staff. Still in the similar category, but all new and different at the same time. That was transition 1. Transition 2, in July I had my first Trunk Shows as a Noonday Ambassador. I feel called to this role and position as being one small part of advocating for the oppressed and orphan care [more about Noonday in a bit]. Lastly, transition 3, our oldest, Canyon, started kindergarten. ALL.DAY.KINDERGARTEN. Yikes! The Big Leagues and this mama are still getting used to having him gone all day. His two little sisters are too. These transitions were added to the normal whirlwind of birthdays, family issues, camps, working at the preschool, parenting, and commitments. You know, the norm.

So, this fall and winter gave been a time of transitions and sincere self-evaluation. What I am finding is that I more than not, try to fly solo. By flying solo I mean, without seeking the One who desires what is best for me and loves me perfectly. Jesus, how gracious you are. How broken I am.

A few years ago my mom gave me this darling, lime-ish green ceramic cake platter. It had this delicate scalloped edge and sat in my kitchen in this little awkward corner on the counter. With a few little items like an old mason jar and a cute bowl full of lemons or limes, it somehow made that little corner a little bit nicer and less awkward. One day, I dropped a large cookbook on my dear cake stand and it broke in half. I was so bummed and actually still am a bummed about it to this day. I have yet to even replace it. I suppose I could have super-glued it back together but, since I wasn’t going to take the time and effort so, in the trash it went. After all, it would never be the same.

So often in life we deem things un-useful when they are broken, or at least not useful to their fullest. I am so thankful this isn’t how Christ sees us, as we are all broken. From the small cracks to the completely shattered, we are all not perfect. In each area of our lives where we aren’t quite fully put back together or fixed, our amazing God is there every step until we are whole again. No matter how long it takes, using His super-glue an pieces us back together.

Thrown out. I am thankful this isn’t what Christ does with us when we are broken. No matter how broken we are. Christ sees us all as useful. Useful to further His kingdom. Useful to share of His unfailing love.  Worthy, in all our brokenness, to call us His own, and USE us at the same time through His redeeming grace and never ending love.

Often, there is a stigma that we have to have all our “stuff” together to be effective in this life. That we can’t really walk by someone else in the midst of our own failings and shortcomings in life. Thank God that is NOT the case. He uses each cracked and shattered one of us.

This brings me to Noonday Collection. From a young age, the oppressed, poverty stricken and orphaned weighed heavily on my heart. This has only increased as I have gotten older. I discovered Noonday Collection looking for a gift for a friend that had some depth, a story. A couple of months later I became a Noonday Ambassador. Noonday provides opportunities to the oppressed and supports orphan care. That’s the heart of the company. It creates work, empowerment and a sustainable income for our artisans. Noonday offers amazing handmade jewelry, accessories and home items. Each piece comes with a story. A real story.

The artisans each have a story. Often of brokenness from socioeconomic status, abuse, sexual violence, HIV/AIDS, and/or poverty. Living a life of oppression, a life most of us cannot fully comprehend. Being a part of Noonday has merged my story, full of cracks and missing pieces with the stories of Noonday artisans.  As an ambassador, I am blessed with the opportunity to advocate for the oppressed and share the amazing items and artisan’s stories. The stories that, a million miles away, have spoken loudly to me and are melding with my story, and creating a new one.

Noonday’s heart is that every child deserves a home. Through Noonday, families are given sustainable income to support themselves which in turn supports orphan care by allowing families the ability to stay together and not have the children be burden of being one more mouth to feed. Noonday Trunks Shows can also be fundraisers for adoption! Have a fun Trunk Show where you get to try on the very stylish jewelry and accessories, hear artisan’s stories all while raising money for an adoption of a child to have a forever family. Another chapter in a story.

When something is broken we have a choice to either fix and repair it or throw it out and get rid of it. I am thankful that our God pieces back together our broken stories and blends them together to become even a more significant one.

Now onto the GIVEAWAY! Yep!  A Noonday Collection Giveaway! The amazing item on this giveaway is the MUKISA NECKLACE. This is a necklace I LOVE and wear often. It is made of hand rolled paper beads from Noonday’s artisans in Uganda.

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TO ENTER

COMMENT: Make a comment on this blog

PURCHASE: Go peruse the AMAZING items of the Noonday Collection and if you see something you like and make a purchase, come back and let me know what item(s) you purchased and why. You will love the items, trust me!

HOST A TRUNK SHOW: Schedule to Host a Trunk Show and not only get entered, BUT also be a VOICE for the oppressed. Contact me or visit the ‘Host a Show’ webpage to connect with an Ambassador to host your own Trunk Show. You won’t regret it!

*Entrants will be chosen at random **Giveaway ends Thursday, January 17th at midnight ***Winner anounced Friday, January 18th, 2013

GOOD LUCK!

Enjoy the next handful of days of the Noonday Blog Train by visiting the blogs of:

Jan. 16- Jamie Rives
Jan. 17- Marian Taylor
Jan. 18- Annie Phillips
Jan. 19- Audra Kay Koning
Jan. 20- Tara Eichstedt