Truth // This is who YOU are

Let's face it, it is the middle of the school year & some of us are just plain pooped. As the world continues to spin around me I am refreshed & revived by this truth, so I thought I would share it with you. Believe me, this is no fancy smancy blog post with big complicated words, but simply the written truth & what has been on my heart recently.

This is who YOU are.
1 Peter 2:9 "But you are a chosen people, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, a people belonging to God, that you may declare the praises of Him who called you out of darkness in to his wonderful light". 

Instead of writing empty words, I just want to challenge you to mediate on this scripture. You are chosen. You belong to the King. You are called to declare the name of the Holy One who has pulled you from the pit of darkness into His marvelous & eternal light. Wow. What a great reminder of who we are & what our purpose here on this earth is! Let's take on this week with spiritual tenacity. Be a prayer warrior.

Sarah Delanie 


If God is For Us

Constantly taunted by this world and all of it’s duties and expectations it puts on us, I’m thankful for the breath of fresh air that this verse holds. It pushes me forward on to new things, new adventures, & new experiences. Knowing that my Savior fought for me + all that I am, even if it’s broken, is just such a blessing to think about.

When we remember that Christ urges us to walk worthy of our calling (Ephesians 4:1) and that He is for us, we can truly do powerful things for the Kingdom!

Take heart, my friends, and walk worthy of your calling, fully embracing the role Christ has set before you!

xoxo // Ciera Chante


We Want YOU

Have you ever walked into an ice cream shop with just four flavors? No? What planet do you live on?! (just kidding....) But, why not? Because it's too limited. Vanilla, Chocolate, Rocky Road, and Cotton Candy, aren't the only ice cream flavors in the world. 

As such, Ciera, Mackenzie, Sarah, and I, aren't the only girls in the world chasing our entrepreneurial dreams :) There are so many other young women (read: YOU!) who have ideas, experiences, thoughts, and visions that we don't have. It's unique and utterly beautiful.

We want to make Shine & Soar Magazine (and blog too) an ice cream shop of sorts with many different young women sharing their hearts, stories, creativity, and talents in it. Can you imagine the yumminess of the variety of all these flavors combined into one magazine/blog? I die. 

So how do we make that happen? Submissions y'all! This is what we're looking for specifically right now:

New Beginnings

This is the theme of Issue One, which is launching in early March. We're looking for articles (and photographs/graphics!) that are about a new beginning in your life. Maybe it's about the time it really sank in that you were made new in Christ, moving, transitioning from school to working, going pro, starting a new business, or a day where you decided to live differently....and did. We're also looking for poems too! Oh, how I wish I could write amazing poems. Since laying out a 50+ page magazine without a good amount of photos is really hard, we'd love to feature your photos too! Specifically, spring photos, senior/female portrait sessions taken outside, or any other photographs pertaining to new beginnings. See our Contribute page for more details on actually submitting your photos/articles.

The Blog

We're also looking for submissions to feature on our blog. On Wednesdays, we're doing lifestyle posts. If you have an outfit, office, bedroom, recipe, blog, or book you want to share, write up a post on it and send it to us. But, another unique feature we want to do is Behind The Scenes. Yep! We want to know what you do, what your regular day is like, and sneak peeks! Show us the inside scoop on your awesome life ;) On every other Friday, we'll be featuring a Life Story of one of you. A story in your life that taught you a lesson or a theme running throughout your life story. See more details on the Contribute page.

We're so excited to collaborate with you and feature your work + talents! Here's to creating an ice cream shop of a magazine filled with amazing flavors of young Christian women entrepreneurs :)

xoxo Bethany Aleshire


Abide in Jesus

Abide in me, and I in you. As the branch cannot bear fruit by itself, unless it abides in the vine, neither can you, unless you abide in me. // John 15:4

I've been soaking up all this time without school to grow. To start 2013 off right and intentionally. Watching Passion 2013 pretty much all day and all night for the first four days of 2013, was so good for my spirit. It cracked me open. It revealed to me how deprave and unholy my heart and life is. How I'm focusing my identity on who I try to be/look like, instead of who God tells me I am. This heart change is good y'all. So hard, but so good.

One of the main convictions I had is how many days in 2012 WEREN'T started off in His presence or went without the thought of "How can I glorify Christ today?" running through my head. I would open up my computer before the Word, I wouldn't pray before I made a decision or started a meeting. If I want my life to flourish spiritually, I need to start my days out in God's presence. Point blank.

Satisfy us in the MORNING with your steadfast love, that we may rejoice and be glad all our days.
// Psalm 90:14

Let me hear in the MORNING of your steadfast love, for in you I trust. // Psalm 143:8a

O LORD, in the MORNING you hear my voice; in the MORNING I prepare a sacrifice for you and watch. // Psalm 5:3

But I will sing of your strength; I will sing aloud of your steadfast love in the MORNING.
// Psalm 59:16a

(emphasis mine)

I need to throw myself out of bed (yes) and get into His presence. I need to spend sweet time alone with Him reading the Bible, praying, meditating on scripture. To be fully satisfied, content, and filled with joy. That's the only way that my soul will be satisfied, nothing in this world can fill that void.

The whole passage of John 15 is utterly beautiful, but this verse stands out to me because it's solely focused on abiding in Christ. We can't bear fruit, we can't live life, without abiding in Christ. How can you live life without knowing the ONE who made you? Without knowing your purpose on this earth is to glorify Him?

We can't grow spiritually on our own. The branch can't grow fruit on it's own, can it? We can't force ourselves to grow spiritually. It has to be you setting aside time in your life and in that time surrendering it to the Holy Spirit's power to grow you.

So as today starts the first full work/school week, abide in Jesus in the morning, in every waking hour. Go to bed half hour earlier to wake up a half hour earlier. It is possible :) Don't let another year pass by without spiritual growth in Christ. It will be your biggest regret of all.

xoxo Bethany


January. First. Fresh. New. Beginning.

 January. First. Fresh. New. Beginning.

Being a teenager and chasing after some “unordinary” dreams & visions can get frustrating at times. We get lost in the shuffle of life & usually have no idea where to start. Guess what? I have a resolution. 

Aligning Your Dreams. It is all to easy to chase after our own dreams. We forget all to often that when we chase our “selfish” ambition, it will fall through the cracks & leave us empty, wanting more. Aligning your dreams with Jesus’ will for your life will SHINE & SOAR about the rest. It will radiate exuberantly in your heart and in the lives of others. Seek the Lords face & allow Him to guide you. He will give you a dream that has never been dreamt before.

Hebrews 12:11-13 For the moment all discipline seems painful rather than pleasant, but later it yields the peaceful fruit of righteousness to those who have been trained by it.Therefore lift your drooping hands and strengthen your weak knees, and make straight paths for your feet, so that what is lame may not be put out of joint but rather be healed.

Making Goals. A great way to organize your thoughts is to write them down in a journal. Write down your goals, no matter how big. Write down investments, whether that be a new lens, editing software, laptop or sewing machine, giving yourself a vision will help inspire you to keep moving forward. Set a deadline, be determined & know that if it is the Lords will, it WILL happen. Find peace in knowing you are not in control. 

Isaiah 26:3 You will keep in perfect peace him whose mind is steadfast, because he trusts in you.

Prepare. Be steadfast. When we call upon the Lord, seek His face and are willing to follow in His foot steps, there is NO holding back. Press, press, press deeper into His presence. It is not easy & often times messy, but there is beauty in the mess of it all. Jesus does not desire ordinary for our lives. He calls us to realities that look crazy to this world & others around us. Are you ready to walk worthy of your calling? 

Colossians 1:10 And we pray this in order that you may live a life worthy of the Lord and may please him in every way: bearing fruit in every good work, growing in the knowledge of God,

Pray. I promise you have heard this more than once. Lay your heart our before the Lord & listen. Where the spirit of the Lord is there is freedom, peace & joy. 

1 Thessalonians 5:16-18 Be joyful always; pray continually; give thanks in all circumstances, for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus.”


xoxo // Sarah Delanie 


Off on an Adventure | A Fresh, New Year | 2013 Planning

   We are about to start a fresh, new year filled with promise. So, as we embark on this adventure, this is the advice I have for you…dream and plan. Close the doors of the past and move forward, because God has more up the pike for you. Don’t stumble over what is in the past, and never, ever second guess who you were created to be and where your talent lies. Tear down the fear that stops you from being bold,  and be hopeful for the future Christ has given you. Most of all, don’t fear the unknown, and always remember that God's plans are perfect. 

The heart of man plans his way, but the Lord establishes his steps // Proverbs 16:9

The Process....

1. Look back
What worked in 2012 and what didn't? Whether its daily bible studies or business, we can all look back on this year and learn. Be honest with yourself and use that to make this next year better.

2. Pray over 2013
Seek out what God is calling you to short and long term, and center each of your goals on Christ. 

3. Make a list
Whether big or small, it is so important to write down your dreams for 2013. Find and write down the blessings in each of your goals too! Invest in a planner that is functional and beautiful (pretty things make work so much more fun!) and write down your 2013 goals in depth, in achievable steps.

   *One of my plans for this next year is to blog goals monthly. Writing them down and accomplishing them quickly makes other goals seem that much more attainable.

4. Create a deadline 
Give yourself time constraints monthly and write goals down on a calendar. Look through your goals weekly to stay focused on what you have planned.

2013 is going to be big. Let's do this.




The New Year // Ciera Chante

So, the new year is here… The time for resolutions and goals and plans. And for us, entrepreneurs, that means evaluating what worked and what didn’t in the past year, ways to better client experience, & to streamline workflow.

To determine what went on my list of goals for 2013 (business & personal goals), I started praying & planning.

I decided on these guidelines for my goals:

  • Something I need to do.

Those things you say you’ll start on next month and it just keeps being put on the backburner. It could be working out, getting a business license, etc.
  • Something I want to do.

What you want to do for your own pleasure. Take a painting class? Learn how to sew? Take a vacation?
  •  Something for my soul.

Something that will get you refreshed. It could be journaling, vacationing, having a dance party with friends, etc.
  •  Something to improve.

What do you need to work on? Organization? Productivity? Physical fitness?

All of these sort of coincide & overlap with one another, but when I keep these guidelines in mind when writing my 2013 goals I have a list of things that will help me throughout the new year.

I don’t know about you, but I’m more motivated when things look pretty & are organized. Bonus points if there’s checkboxes to mark off what I’ve accomplished… that’s satisfaction, at it’s finest. So, for you organizers, list makers, & go-getters, I created this spiffy little goals sheet.


The New Year // Bethany Aleshire

2013 is here and we couldn’t be more excited! It’s a new slate, a fresh start, a brand new beginning. Yet, any day can be that if you believe it is. As 2013 begins, each of the women on the Shine & Soar team will be giving you a peek into how they plan for the new year so you can get inspired + do some planning and dreaming as well. Happy New Year to all of you wonderful ladies! xoxo

Hey you :)

How is your 2013 dreaming + planning going? I wanted to show you how I plan. I'm not an entirely goals driven gal, I'm more of a vision gal. I have a vision of who I want to be and what life I want to live, that drives me. Last year I wrote down a list of goals without figuring out the WHY behind them, why I wanted them. And I barely touched that list for the rest of the year. Oh how different I want this year to be! 

This is how I planned my 2013. It's not perfect, but it is a continual process for me.


I didn't do this step as much as I should have, but without God's guidance, our lives are wayward. Pray for His guidance on what you should do, accomplish, and be in 2013. Sit in His presence.


What happened in your 2012? What did you accomplish? How was your spiritual life? What were you grateful for in 2012? Blankly put, what DID work and what DIDN'T? Write it all out. You'll get clearer. It can be hard for those of you who had a hard 2012 (I'm with ya here) to look back on it all. Write it down quick and praise God for bringing you through it...then focus on what was good in your 2012.

3//How do you want to FEEL?

Life is about how you feel living it, not about how it looks. Write down all the feelings that you're interested in and then narrow it down. Why do you want to feel ____? Look up the definitions and get intentional with each five or six words you choose. I want to feel influential, creative, genuine, love, bold, and alive. All of my goals come out of that. How do I feel genuine? Well, I make it an intention of quality> quantity with my interactions with people, hug a lot & tight, be honest in all my writings, and do random acts of kindness for others. Bam, right there are intentions/goals for 2013. 

4//Get Inspired

How can you plan your new year without getting into the mood. Visually, lay out your 2013 on Pinterest. Images that inspire you towards living, pictures of your goals (lenses anyone? :)), verses that set your heart on the right track. My board is here. Pin your vision of how you want your life to look like in 2013. Let it be beautiful :)


Now like I said before,  I treat a new year as a new slate and a continuation into who I want to become.   What kind of life do you want to live? What is God calling you to be? What is the meaning of your life? What is your mission in life (not your purpose, which is to glorify God in everything)? What kind of person do you want to be? Set out a vision for 2013 in pictures and words. Write down in a story format (or poetry, whatever your gift is) who you are on December 31st, 2013. Maybe it's a scene in a coffee shop as you review your 2013. Make this serve as an inspiration and motivation for you to work hard towards that goal. Derive goals from the person you want to become & life you want to live.


What do you want to create in 2013? What big projects do you want to see come to life? Start your design business? Shoot a styled shoot? Launch a new website? A book?

7//Word of the Year

Now after you've looked back on 2012 and created your vision for 2013, think about the word you want to LIVE in 2013. Is it something like faith, create, authenticity, boldness, or steadfast? Mine is a mix of two this year. Be and Boldness. Why two? Because boldness is pretty much the word of my life and I want to continue in that, but Be is the focus for this year. I'd love to know yours, comment below with it! This word wraps up all my planning + dreaming for 2013.

8//Other resources

Here are some other inspiring ways people are planning for their 2013 + resources for you to do the same!

Marie Forleo's MarieTV 2013 + 2012 New Years Videos

Now go out there and start making strives on your goals, walking in your vision, and just doing. Even if you do fail at things, you are still making progress. Go out + do!

xoxox B