Honesty

Lauren Scruggs Kennedy Foundation Q&A

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Hey friends, Melissa here! I am so excited to share a Q&A with Lauren and her two co-founders of the Lauren Scruggs Kennedy Foundation. Lisa Curlee and Ashley Bonnin Igo are two incredibly strong and God-centered women who also have prosthetics. Together with Lo, they have partnered to help provide beautiful prosthetic coverings (like they have) for other women who have experienced limb loss. Keep reading to learn more about LSKF and the three beautiful hearts behind this incredible foundation with a life-changing purpose.

LO 

Do you remember when the dream for LSKF was first placed on your heart? Tell us about that!

I received prosthetic arms about six months after my accident, and I was so grateful because all of the arms were covered by my insurance. At this point, I had not yet met any one who had lost a limb or anyone who wore a prosthesis, so I thought my coverage story was normal. Shortly after, I started meeting so many girls, and they each would share their story of not being able to afford a good quality prosthesis. I came to realize how rare my story was, and these stories broke my heart. I had experienced such renewal and wholeness from this physical object that produced such internal healing effects, and I wanted every one to have the opportunity to experience that. From that point on, I started praying with the intention of wanting to make that possible. I soon after met my two precious friends, Lisa and Ashley, who both lost their legs and had the same passion I did, and the process of creating LSKF began. God has been in every single detail. It has been so humbling and powerful to be a part of.

How did you get connected with Ashley and Lisa and how did the three of you become the LSKF team together?

Ashley and I initially met on Facebook, and we became quick friends! She lived in Dallas and had never met any one who was missing a limb, so it was extra special getting to connect with each other! I met Lisa at the Beautifully Flawed Retreat that Bethany Hamilton hosts in San Diego. I am so thankful for her because she is full of wisdom and is my mom’s age, so she has experienced many seasons of life without a leg. I can ask her any question or express any fear of what’s ahead in the future, and she speaks so much truth into those thoughts. She has the most beautiful family and the deepest faith. The three of us had such a similar passion to bring hope, ignite faith, and restore dignity in girls and women by providing beautiful cosmetic coverings for prostheses. We are so honored to walk alongside girls in their prosthetic and healing journey. We all know through our own experiences that not feeling alone is one of the biggest components of restoration!

What has your prosthetic covering meant to you on a heart level and why do you think you feel called to share that gift with others?

Because I was used to having two hands my entire life, my prosthetic arm made me feel whole again because I felt as close as I could to having two hands again. It is high quality and looks so realistic, so it also gave me confidence to enter back into reality. It is such a gift, and even though it is a physical object relating to outward appearance, it has helped ignite so much healing and acceptance in my heart. It has brought so much renewal and is a physical reminder of God’s goodness and beauty in pain. It also is something positive in the midst of loss!

LISA

What has the journey of LSKF been like so far?

My journey with the LSK Foundation has been incredible, joyful, and humbling at the same time. In some ways it’s been a continuation of a life journey, marked by God revealing Himself in many ways and through so many people. It’s been an honor and a privilege to meet others from all walks of life that have helped us from the beginning to make this happen. I’ve loved working with Lauren and Ashley, our advisers, donors, sponsors and especially the women that we have been able to serve and hopefully improve their life journeys. For those women that wear a prosthesis and desire it to look real and natural, it’s more than exciting to see how this gift can change the way they feel loved.

How did you know that you were called to be a part of LSKF?

As in most life journeys, years of experience can be the best teacher and often our “calling” is completely unexpected. It was over 30 years after my accident at age 16 that I began to ask the Lord if He could use my specific story to help any women of any age that had experienced limb loss. I had never even met another female that had experienced anything similar to my story. I had no idea until attending a retreat started by Bethany Hamilton and Lauren in 2013 that there are many girls and women that were also experiencing the same kind of struggles, fears, isolation, and insecurities that I had much of my life and had also never met anyone who could relate. As the Lord gave Lauren, Ashley and I the same vision for serving women with prostheses, He also showed us that this was a unique way to encourage, love, and listen to their hearts and their stories. I am so grateful to be able to watch the recipients of LSKF so far and share in their excitement and hope for the future.

What is your biggest prayer for the future of LSKF?

My prayer for the LSK Foundation is to not only provide the opportunity for many more girls and women to have a beautiful prosthesis if they so desire, but also just to be there for those that have experienced limb loss, with or without a prosthesis. As we share our stories and life experiences, I pray that  the Author of our stories receives all of the glory.

ASHLEY 

What is your favorite part about being part of LSKF?

It’s really hard to put into words the impact that LSKF has had on my life. Before getting to know Lauren and Lisa, I hadn’t even met many women who had lost a limb, much less be able to call them friends. The LSK foundation has revealed an amazing community of women that I am so grateful to know, and who we are so blessed to be able to serve. It’s such a comfort to share a life experience with them and truly demonstrates to me how the Lord cares for us in ways we could never imagine.

Why is the foundation so near and dear to your heart?

In addition to the amazing community it has fostered, seeing the joy that having a beautiful prosthesis brings to these women is like no other experience. Each step in the process is so worth the day we get to gift the final prostheses and see their faces light up in amazement. I love getting to be a part of something that represents hope and healing, not just from a physical standpoint, but also spiritually. Through the gift of these silicone coverings, it is our prayer that our recipients know and experience the love of Jesus Christ who is our ultimate comforter and healer.

Tell us about the dynamic between you, Lisa, and Lo! How fun is it working on this mission together?

Since we’re all in different cities, we put in a lot of phone time! We each have different gifts that really allow us to work so well together. I’m the painfully honest task master of the crew 🤣 and am thankfully balanced out by Lo’s sweet disposition and Lisa’s gracious spirit.

Worship Song On Repeat

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There is something so powerful, beautiful, and truth-filled about worship music that makes listening to it a real spiritual experience and we thank God for that! We have talked about our love for worship music on the blog before by sharing our Spotify playlist + including lyrics to songs in our faith posts. Today we want to discuss one of our favorite worship artists as of late: Will Reagan of United Pursuit. His latest album, Tell All My Friends, is currently on repeat, but there is one song by him in particular that has been causing me to pause and really meditate over the lyrics and that is a track titled “Nothing I Hold To“.  Turn it on ASAP and read our thoughts below!

“I lean not on my understanding,
my life is in the hands of the Maker of heaven”

Proverbs 3:5-6 immediately comes to my mind when I hear those lyrics. No matter how many times I hear this truth and read this promise, I am just forever blown away by how awesome it is that we have the Maker of everything- heaven and earth- in constant care of and control of our lives, enabling us to be free from having to rely on our own limited understanding. Thank you, Jesus!

“I give it all to you God, trusting that you’ll make something beautiful out of me”

Giving it all and then trusting. Trust, trust, trust! As Isaiah 64:8 reminds us, we are the clay and He is the potter. We are His work and He is forever working on us and refining us to be the beautiful masterpieces that he designed us to be. It is by surrendering our lives to Him through trust that we reap the fruits of His promises to us.

“I will climb this mountain with my hands wide open”

What a beautiful picture this is. May we all take each day as an opportunity to climb the mountains, go through the valleys, and journey through life with hands wide open- available and ready for whatever He calls us into, guides us out of, and leads us through. Even though it sounds scary not to hold on to anything, that is actually the best way. Our hands can be open as we stay close to Him, since he enables us and strengthen us through any circumstance that we will ever go through.

Are there any worship songs that are especially speaking to you right now? We would love to know in the comments below. And thank you, Will Reagan (and all other worship music artists) for writing such incredibly beautiful and true lyrics about the good Lord that speak right to the heart of His children!

images by Felicia Lasala 

THE OUTFIT (c/o)

dress | sunnies | bag | shoes

That Mother-Daughter Relationship

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There really is nothing quite like a mother-daughter relationship. It is a beautifully messy, totally unique, and completing transforming relationship that develops over time as we continue to come into the women that God created us to be. As daughters, we are so blessed to have mothers that have always inspired us, taught us, challenged us, forgiven us, loved us, laughed with us, cried with us, and simply just been there for us with all their love, strength, and patience…day after day and year and year.

There is so much my mom has taught me just by being herself. I have learned the beauty of femininity, how to make a home cozy and comfortable, how to be strong and resilient with grace, how to be firmly rooted in faith in Jesus, how to love others well, how to be healthy from the inside out, and so much more. I have witnessed her doing these things with such joy my whole life and without knowing that it was happening at the time, I was learning the art of becoming a woman because of the way she lives and loves.

Sending warm wishes to to all the moms and daughters always, but especially this mother’s day weekend. Enjoy it! xo

Images by Felicia Lasala 

THE OUTFIT (c/o)

shorts | tee  (on sale!) | kimono | slides

Adjusting to Shifts

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It’s interesting to think about the word settled because right when we start to feel settled, it seems that life always surprises us or the season we are living in takes a turn that requires some adjustment. To illustrate, after my accident, I moved out of my parent’s house into an apartment with my best friend. It was located in such a cute area of Dallas, and I must be honest, it was the most adorable place. It was extra cozy, and Anna’s mom is an interior designer, so she gave our home the perfect touch. Anna and I live at such a similar pace, where cooking healthy meals together and watching Friends in the evenings at home was our version of heaven.

After two years of the most lovely living experience, I got engaged, moved to Los Angeles, and got married within an eight month time span. Life went from positive to positive attached to a lot of new with so many emotions swirling about; I was grieving the loss of living near my family, living with my best friend, being in a city that was my comfort, leaving behind my daily routine and a church that I loved. BUT I was so excited to marry Jason and start a life together in beautiful sunny California.

This shift has been such an incredible blessing but simultaneously one of the hardest adjustments of my life. I entered into a city where people didn’t know the details of my stories and my heart. I battled and still battle loneliness and had to have grace and patience with myself to feel acquainted to a new bustling city (much needed even after four years). Self compassion is sometimes the hardest of them all, no?

The lifestyle here is much different than Texas and getting familiarized with it + re-learning how to make new friends takes more intention than the ordinary. Not to mention, I faced learning how to communicate better while expressing a new level of vulnerability, and I learned how to trust my husband first rather than the community I had for so long depended on. So many good yet intimidating things that I couldn’t hide from. (insert wide-eyed emoji here).

These last few years have been a time of accelerated growth with the realization that I am not in control. Shifts in life are hard, yet so beautiful. I am reminded daily to live with a grateful heart, face difficulties head-on, and accept the shifts that come our way. Embracing life’s changes only enrich our character and extend our compassion. And in it all, we must learn to relax. Pressure on ourselves never does any good.

What are some life shifts that have been hard, yet growing? I would love to hear from you in the comments below.

This post is in collaboration with The Refined Collective Series. Be sure to check out the other ladies in this wonderful group! Kat, The Refined Woman, Brynn Watkins, Jackie Viramontez, Sarah Shreves

Images by Felicia Lasala 

THE OUTFIT (c/o)

shorts | tee  (on sale!) | kimono | slides

Praising Our Great Provider

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Do you sometimes just rest in awe of how awesome God’s provision truly is? When we dwell on this, our hearts undoubtedly overflow with amazement, gratefulness, and humbleness, and before we know it, we are giving and living in a state of praise for our great, heavenly, perfect Provider.

Even though our circumstances might not always look or seem like it, the Lord knows exactly what we need, when we need it, why, how much, and everything else- in every single aspect of our lives! How incredible is that? Praising Him for how wonderfully he cares for all of His children both requires and causes a thankful, open, appreciative, trusting, believing heart.

Lately, I have been spending time in the Old Testament and seeing how God led Israel out of Egypt is truly mind-blowing. He made promises to them and fulfilled those promises, leading them out of slavery and into the Promise Land. In His time and His way, God made a way for His people because of His immense love for them. Even though they weren’t aware of His plan, He carried it out, gently yet powerfully leading them out of bondage and into freedom with Him!

The same is true for us. He loves us more than we could even begin to imagine and is providing for, caring for, planning for, preparing for, and making a way for us, leading us to His best at all times. Rejoicing in the simple yet heart-changing Truth that we are His children and He is our Father is a way of life and is no doubt the best life!

What we need and what we want are vastly two different things. Being grateful for everything, trusting completely (especially during hard seasons), and following Him even when you aren’t so sure is always, always, always the way. Just think- He knows us better than we know ourselves, so I would much prefer He provide for me than rely on my own “strength”!

So don’t worry, saying, ‘What will we eat?’ or ‘What will we drink?’ or ‘What will we wear?’  For the Gentiles eagerly seek all these things, and your heavenly Father knows that you need them.  But seek first the kingdom of God and his righteousness, and all these things will be provided for you. (Matthew 6:31-33 Christian Standard Bible) 

“But seek first the kingdom of God…and all these things will be provided for you”. We are to seek Him. That is all this verse requires of us. A heart that is seeking Him is one that is believing, praising, trusting, and prioritizing Him. God is so good and we are in His loving, protective, wise, perfect hands.

I recently heard this song by Housefires and listening to it really puts my mind in such a sweet, peaceful place. A place of reassurance that He always satisfies us. Any want, desire, aching, longing, and dream…He is our answer and the way!

Come to the water, all who are thirsty
Come and drink
Come to the table, all who are hungry
Come and feast
Those who are weary, those who are needy
Come receive!

-Come To The River, Housefires

Favorite Bible + devotional:

Q&A With Lauren Curry: The Beauty Of Moving

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Hey friends! We are so excited with be chatting with our dear friend, Lauren Curry, today on LSK. Lauren manages our Pinterest page & you can read this post to get to know her a bit more. Read the Q&A below to hear about her move to LA and what the big life transition has shown her about the goodness and greatness of God. She shares extremely inspiring words about trusting the Lord to lead you in your life in His perfect time, how important it is to find a Church community that you love, and how Jesus comforts and provides in the sweetest ways. Regardless of if you are moving soon, have moved, or never moved, this is a must-read!

What inspired you to move to LA?

I had been visiting California 4-5x a year since my uncle and brother had both moved from California to Washington State around 4 years ago. Since they left, I had really been finding reasons to visit since they moved. When I was in college, I interned in California 3 summers in a row and literally every time I came to LA, I felt like my heart was exploding because I loved it so much. It sounds so dramatic, but it’s true! It was this past September when my dad had finally sat me down and said, “God told me that this isn’t your place anymore and that you need to move to LA. So I think you need to move as soon as you can, like in the next 2 weeks”.

So literally, I think I moved 2 1/2 weeks after my dad had sat me down without any full time job or any idea what I was going to do in LA, but I knew that it was the right timing.

 

What was the biggest challenge in moving to a new city and how did the Lord help you with the adjustment?

The biggest challenge for me was feeling lonely for the people that I had left in Washington. Whenever I would talk to my family who was celebrating a birthday party all together or see my friends back home on social media hanging out and having fun, I would, to be honest, ask myself why I did the hard thing.

Through this, the Lord really has really surrounded me with such amazing people, but He has also been teaching me how to do things alone. When I got to LA, I realized a lot of what I had to learn was that sometimes there’s areas of your life and things you need to grow in and do alone so that God has space to lead you to new places.

What are 3 of your favorite things about the city?

1. I LOVE the restaurants and coffee shops in LA. One of my favorite things in the world is finding new coffee shops and discovering new eats and LA literally has a never ending list of amazing places to go for food or coffee. Living here makes me wish I was a professional food critic.

2.  I really admire how the mindset in LA is to dream big. Everyone you meet here is here to really chase and pursue a dream. It’s really inspiring to live in a city that doesn’t put rules on what you can accomplish- I think it’s helped me really to start thinking outside my comfort zone.

3. I really just love my Church. I’ve been going to Mosaic in Hollywood since I moved and it’s literally been a lifeline for me. I’ve met some of my closest friends from LA through Mosaic and it’s really just allowed me to grow more and make my faith my own. As a follower of Jesus, it’s so important to surround yourself with a Church community who can be alongside you when life feels hard.

What has been the biggest gift about transitioning to LA?

God’s timing, 100%. Before I moved, I kept making excuses for why maybe I shouldn’t. I was scared that I was going to relocate myself and then end up with no job or no community, or realize that maybe this isn’t the place that I was supposed to be. But literally the day I moved to LA, I could feel God’s favor on my life. Doors kept opening for me and God’s timing was so perfect in every detail. So much has happened for me in the past 6 months and it was all stuff that, before I moved, I was desperately trying to organize on my own rather than allowing God to bring it to me when I was ready for it.

Biggest piece of advice you would give someone who is considering a relocation?

Have a tangible, genuine faith in where God can take you.

When you know and believe that the Lord has called you to greater places, you must also understand that He will truly protect you and guide you to where you’re supposed to go, while giving you what you need along the way. It’s not always going to make sense and it’s not always going to be on your timeline, but He truly has the perfect place for you at the perfect time and when He calls you to that, take action with the thought that He WILL provide for you and give you exactly what you need, when you need it. Before I knew I was moving, I prayed for MONTHS that God would give me 3 things: My place, my purpose, and my people. Months later, I’m truly reaping the seeds of those prayers, so I would challenge anyone who is confused or scared to pray for those 3 things and I promise, you WILL see that prayer come to pass.

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