Sharing some notes of encouragement in case this is a challenging moment, rough day or stormy season for you, dear sister. Thanks for visiting Joy within and I hope something you read, watch or listen to inspires, encourages & refreshes you today.

From the blog

How busy is your life, and how loud is your space?
Before this stay-home season, were you always on-the-go, and was the tv, radio, a podcast episode or playlist always on rotation?
Not a quiz; just a gentle prompt asked by a former hot-footer. Your answers to those questions aren’t my business but your health is my concern.
Sometimes it seems like we in the west are competing to see who is more busy. Being productive is healthy and there are times when you gotta pump the gas pedal to get moving and gain momentum, but being overwhelmed with work can affect our quality of liferead post
Have you ever had a moment or walked through a season when you knew what you were called to do – a time when you understood how you serve best, shine brightest and live lightest?
What’s your beautiful design?
What are some activities that harmonize with whom you’re made to be? Not necessarily who you aspire to be (because that can change with seasons) but who you’re uniquely moulded to be. They don’t have to be glamorous or high-volume at all. In fact, they’re more likely to be things you can do without feeling the need to idly check your phone, look at the time constantly or measure its value by money.
Is there purpose in the pace you’ve set? Read post
The words, “I’m an entrepreneur” can sound like a Top 10 hit in your ears when you say it the first few times. No harm in that.
But i do remember how attached i became to my business, as if it was an appendage that i couldn’t quite shake off, even when i wanted some air. It almost became a fixture on my mind, engraved into the daily design of any given day. What looked like success came with insomnia, marathon migraines and a golf-ball sized missing clump of hair for a few months awhile back (thankfully, i have a thick crown and that’s a distant memory.) Read post
She hated my guts, at that point in time. With the receiver still perched in her hand, the woman who thought I wanted her job eeked out the exact words I’d just said to another caller,
You’re welcome. Hope you have a bright rest of the day,” and hung up with a cold smirk. Though each revised word seemed sweet enough, she was glaring across the office at me with a sour look the whole time.
Has anyone ever borrowed an aspect of your personality they otherwise react negatively to when no-one else is around?
Abrasive: showing little concern for the feelings of others; harsh.
Gentle: having or showing a mild, kind, or tender temperament or character…read post
Hi sis, how are you today? The answer isn’t really my business but i still care. By the way, guys who are subscribed to this blog and reading now, y’all are always welcome here. No offense intended when you see ‘sis’ ok?
All of us have been through something – a challenge, encounter or storm of some kind and measure. Coming out of that season can cause us to tip-toe our way around certain people and similar environments, become defensive, turn into workaholic fanatics, pump up the volume on our introvert nature, develop unhealthy habits or worse yet – plant a seed of bitterness (which we don’t want to encourage at all.) Overcoming tough times can also help refine our character, build a stronger sense of patience, cultivate compassion, apply new healthy boundaries, strengthen faith and usher us into a life of prayer. Some rough seasons end with a near-instant breakthrough to brilliance while growing beyond others is a journey made up of a series of steps…read post
So, sometime ago i shaved off one side of my hair. i thought i’d give this ‘artist-look’ to kick it up a notch…and so, i shaved half of my hair (then in locs) off.
But check it – years and care after, without any conscious effort, both sides of my curls are even. Sweet sis, what have you lost? What’s been stolen from you?
Listen up. You can get it all back. Everything you lost can be restored – an’ get dis – like it was never lost in the first place! read post
He was sitting on a broken chair in the middle of a roundabout on the outskirts of town.
i walked over, handed him something and said, “God loves you” before crossing over to head to pay a bill. He looked at me surprised as said – kinda harsh in a way, “KNOW!” Instead of responding piggily, i smiled..then thought about it. He sounded surprised – probably because i’d assumed he didn’t think or know so – but why? – cause he was sitting on a brek-up chair doing seemingly nothing in town? – cause his clothes were raggedy? – cause he was homeless?
That convicted me, but also made me joyful for him. He knew God cares about him. And so, the day went on. The next morning, the same man was on the front cover of the online local paper. He’d been given (get this) – A HOUSE! A house y’all! Yeah, i saw him sitting on the broken chair one time since then, but the point – the lesson (for me too) was and still is – sometimes you have to declare a thing to see a thing…read post
She was standing there at the crossroads by a traffic light in town a few years ago – looking beautiful and all dolled-up.
Waved, smiled and was gonna pass by since my mingling-days have been left behind (lovin’ it.) Then recognized something like sadness in her perfectly-lined eyes.S topped to speak for a bit. She opened up and said she was on her way home to take pills and say goodbye to everything. A mother of many…broken by disappointment from…read post
Today, some brief but pressing thoughts interrupted my day like flashcards begging to be sewed together as a blog post. So, here it is.
You know how I keep sharing reminders that you are meant for more than your career? I say that not to be poetic, but to gently nudge all of us out of the tendency to define ourselves and our worth by what we do, know, or have. Putting up appearances is essentially acting, but even pro actors have work hours and off days…read post
There isn’t a woman I know who doesn’t have a journey of bright highlights and heartbreaking challenges, beautiful smiles and oceans of tears, bestie memories and betrayal let-downs, wonderful surprises and painful trials, confidence-injections and insecurity battles, celebration moments and passing storms, things to look forward to, things to breathe past and things long gone.
Whether we’re friends, polite acquaintances, former amigas, barely on waving terms or otherwise…whether your bank account is temporarily bald, pockets are packed or wall is stacked with awards…whatever your skin-tone, accent, native language, social status, ambitions or address…
We’re all works in progress…read post
Quiet moments are becoming more rare and valuable in an ever-growing noisier-by-the-minute world where news is blaring, playlists are pumping, IG stories are baton-passing, gadgets are always going, and phones pinging in stereo. 

Being comfortable in purposeful moments of quiet can overflow graciously into areas of life where others may lean more towards restlessness. Proactivity is important but patience is still a beautiful fruit. What compels you to ‘be still’ while taking in something? Read post
The world is noisy. If it isn’t the news, it’s notifications or people voicing opinions and asking interview-style questions left, right and center. It’s not that it bothers me; more like it unappealing and can be more than a little unnerving – the noise of it all.
It’s not that I don’t have thoughts or express them (there’s this blog and 100+ songs after all)…it’s that words matter and using a filter brings the best results. We’re also extremely prone to having and harbouring negative, ungrateful thoughts so refreshing the mind is a daily thing. Also, if you’ve ever been around anyone who says every single thing that comes to mind regardless of what temperature, flavour or volume their mind, mood or mouth is set to or what time of day it is, you know just how valuable guarding your mind and checking your heart posture is. Read post

Encouragement from Guest Writers. We are made in plural for a reason; to love, encourage and kindly correct one another.