26 December 2012

10 Tips For Planning A Wedding

This year I have had the privilege to be involved with so many weddings, I am even shocked at how many it has been (6 Weddings this year), but I am so thankful for the beautiful marriages I have been able to witness.

Below are some photos from the wedding I styled on Saturday, I didn't have my camera with me for the whole day so please excuse the quality of some of the photos. 

As a result of being Chief Bridesmaid (once this year) and Maid of honour (twice this year) I have learnt SO much about marriage and wedding day preparations! The preparations required for the lifestyle and also the planning for the wedding day- which is the first day of your marriage in a sense.

The clutch and heels I wore for the wedding. #MOH
Clutch had the brides things and a few of my items too. 
I have kinky twists again. I made them curly to have more bounce.
Protective yet also very easy to style for the wedding. 

The learning has not stopped but what I have learnt so far, I wanted to share with you lovely readers, as it may help someone out there, so hope you enjoy it. Comment and share also. Here are 10 tips I have put together for planning towards the Wedding day.... this is in no particular order, but just the order they came to me...
1) Keep the main thing, the main thing; Be COVENANT focused!

PLEASE remember that the day is about the vows you're going to exchange to your love. Everything else you plan should compliment that main focus. The dress, cake, venue etc play a big part in the overall look, however the most important thing to keep at the forefront is the covenant you are looking to start. 

So many people spend hours and hours looking at colour schemes, invitations and wedding dresses and next to no time actually going through the vows, studying what it is they are about to commit to. Doing the research for things for the day is not a bad thing, but it should not mean no studying goes into the marriage preparations. 

Get to know those vows; study them word for word. Make sure you are COMPLETELY confident about what you will be saying 'I do' to, because once you say it, there is NO going back :D...Praise God!
The wedding day is about pronouncing those vows and the marriage is about living out those vows forever more. 
Me with MR and MRS E. !!!! <3 Praise God!
Serving Mr and Mrs E. was an absolute PLEASURE! I would do it again, if I had to.
 It was so much fun! Thank you. 

2) Come as YOU are

The wedding day doesn't have to be stressful or complicated, it just needs to be you, and have God heavily involved in it! Coming from an African background I have witnessed many weddings that have cost more than the couples could afford, to the point that loans are taken out...all to keep up appearances, and to who?! People that will not even be there the day after the wedding day?!
That is not wise. 

As long as God is the centre of everything (music included) you shall have the atmosphere right and whoever does not agree with your plans, that's between them and God. Your aim is not to please your guests, but to exchange your vows and bring pleasure to God for your union, so come as you are.
Your husband or wife to be is going to be there for you and no one else, so faking it to the people coming, doesn't help anyone and doesn't benefit your relationship. 

Ladies...when it comes to your make up, hair and nails, less is more.  
This is an important day and you want to look great in the photos and all, however you do not want to over do it, as that takes away from the understated elegance, one can bring on the day. 

Let your husband to be, see the you he has grown in love with. Do not come on the wedding day looking like a completely different woman; let your husband to be, recognise his wife. 
Love you and come as you are. That's who he is choosing to marry, so let him see you. (",) 

Enter marriage in style; Start as you mean to go on...with a gentle and meek spirit, loving heart and modest (yet stylish) presentation.

Make up and kinky twists by AJ. Woop! 
I am so not used to wearing make up like this, but it looked nice.

3) Keep the devotion consistent & remain prayerful. Sounds obvious but not everyone does it.

If there is ONE thing you want to keep consist in your relationship, it's the time you spend in God's presence. Stay in the word, read together, study, do whatever you need to, but don't get disconnected to the Source that will bring more life into your lives. Ask God for favour on the weather, let Him fill your heart with the the right desires and trust Him on every decision. 

Proverbs 3:5-8 makes it clear that we should acknowledge God in everything! That also includes choice of who makes the cake, who to invite, seating plan, who should be in your team... the lot. Be sure to ask ask ask God. Ask Him to confirm if the decisions you are making are in His perfect plan for you and trust His leading. When you do make decisions be sure to commit them to the Lord, as He directs the individual steps and makes every plan sure.

Proverbs tells us don't be wise in your own eyes, this applies when planning towards your marriage.

AJ Styled by Nash Amber.

The make up artist for the bridesmaids and the gifted hands behind my kinky twists.
She worked on me and  I worked on her. THANK YOU!! Was great working with you.

(My brother at the back, poking his head. Thank you Sir.)
Me and the beautiful bride, my sister and friend, Mrs E! 
MOH and one of the best men; my very own brother!
Always a pleasure serving alongside him.
 
Black tube top was worn with the dress; modest dressing is always the one. 

4) Be grateful & thankful for your supporters.

Not everyone you expect to support your ideas and even your marriage may do so, therefore appreciate, be thankful and grateful to God for those that believe in His plans for your lives.

No matter who is coming against you and making things difficult and challenging, God's purpose for you both will stand. He loves you and will see it through, if this relationship is His plan for you. 

God will send people your way to assist you and support you. Allow the people He sends, to help you and support you. You are not alone and so don't believe the lies that no one wants to help you. Be specific in your prayers about the type of help you need, so that when it does turn up you can identify it for yourself.

Don't resist help, because that's pride.

Bridesmaids styled by Nash Amber
6 Bridesmaids, 1 Chief Bridesmaid and 1 Maid of Honour <3
Styled by Nash Amber 
5) Speak to other married couples & trusted counselors. They can/will teach you so much! 

Please be open to learn from other couples that have been where you are and are further along the way. Now you may not have any people around you that you believe can help you to have this godly courtship & marriage, but there are people that have written books...such as Cornelius & Heather Lindsey, Joshua Harris, Myles Munroe and others, that have great material you can both study, as you plan and transition into marriage. 

A wise man learns from his mistake, but an even wiser man learns from the mistakes of others.
 Be wise. Ask questions. Seek for Godly counsel.

6) Keep it clean, keep it holy. Don't let the perversion of this world, get in your relationship. 

Your relationship is God's plan for you and so it is a precious responsibility He has entrusted you with. Do not abuse His trust. Do not cast your pearls among swine. Keep it holy. Keep the boundaries where they need to be and honour Christ all the way through.

Until that WEDDING ring, not engagement, but WEDDING ring is on your fingers, keep respecting each others personal space and do not put any confidence in your flesh. Be safe and be wise.

Remember that, what God has given to be shared between a husband and wife is worship! It's a deep level of ministry and a great gift to be enjoyed in the right time. Even up to the very last day...keep the boundaries where they need to be. It protects you and your relationship and keeps out any ungodly soul ties that can be formed in acts of disobedience.

Thumbs up for JESUS!!! I LOOOOVEEEEE THIS Lady!
7) Enjoy it! 

You only get married once, therefore don't let the time go by with stress. Enjoy it, laugh, build good memories. If things don't go to plan, pray, reflect, see where you've gone wrong and ask for more grace in that area. Grace is His empowerment, to do what is right; to do the will of God.
So ask for grace and He shall bestow it unto you.

8) Lady, it is not YOUR day!

Your spouse may do something not so great or make a decision without consulting you and you can feel like 'you're ruining my day!' *cry, cry, cry, sob, sob,sob*....  

Lady, it is NOT your day...same way it is not your marriage alone...the marriage and the wedding day belongs to both of you! The world and other people have so much focus on the bride; making sure you are happy and satisfied etc. However the men also have desires about this day, so it is YOUR responsibility Madam, to make sure it does not turn into 'my day' but stays 'our day'. 

Correct those that bring the wrong vibes to your day & marriage too. Be sure to keep your husband to be, included and involved where ever possible. Not all men may want to be so heavily involved in the little bits and bobs, but most will really appreciate you including them.

Treat him as you would want to be treated. #Love


9) Have a Wedding day running order

On the day itself you will not be able to run around to ensure the things you have planned take place, so before the wedding delegate tasks to trusted people and write down your plans. Make it plain and simple, so that someone else can see your vision and run with it. 

Others that will want to help you, will really appreciate it, so that they can run with the tasks you ask them to do and not have to bother you with questions that may appear silly to you on the day, such as where are the order of services, where does your Auntie sit, how are the photographers getting to the park etc.

Make sure you give your plans over to whoever is coordinating the day for you, well in ADVANCE to give them a chance to actually get their head around your vision. 
MR E and his wife closely behind him. #Family

10) Forgiveness is keyyyy!

I cannot emphasise on this much more! Learn to forgive and keep forgiving. Your spouse may do things that really jar you, things like forget the colour scheme, your Aunts name, or just get things really wrong...learn to forgive, be patient and move on. Do not allow any footholds to be created in your anger. 

This also goes for family members; Dad, Mum, and all the rest. Sometimes they don't realise what they are doing and other times some members of your family deliberately do and say things that just does not help. No matter what people say about you, aim to live peaceably with all. Address whatever the Lord leads you to, and ask for discernment, to know what is really going on in situations, so that you can handle it accordingly. 

Do not allow anyone to ruin your (you and your husband's) wedding day or meddle into your marriage. Not your hair dresser, bridesmaids, flower girls, Pastor, driver etc. NO ONE! Forgive! Forgive! Forgive! Release them all back to God and enjoy your beautiful day! 

Some of my people...they went in on the dance floor. 
______________
So there we have it, the 10 tips for planning a wedding day to aid you in your marriage preparations.

1) Keep the main thing the main thing; Be COVENANT focused!
2) Come as YOU are. 
3) Keep the devotion consistent & remain prayerful. Sounds obvious but not everyone does it.
4) Be grateful & thankful for your supporters.
5) Speak to other married couples & trusted counsellors. They can/will teach you soo much! 
6) Keep it clean, keep it holy. Don't let the perversion of this world, get in your relationship. 
7) Enjoy it! 
8) Lady, it is not YOUR day!
9) Have a Wedding day running order
10) Forgiveness is keyyyy!

Please share with anyone you believe will benefit from these tips. 

My Wedding projects that have been keeping me busy.
One newly wed and another bride to be, both in the same roof.

One wedding styling is completed, as she is now MARRIED...
now I have my next STYLING project to do. 
2013 <3 I am EXCITED! 
6 Bridesmaids styled by Nash Amber. [2012]

I shall do a post for being Maid of honour/ Chief bridesmaid and bridesmaid very soon...

Hope you have a GREAT wedding day and an AWESOME marriage. 
Grace and peace be multiplied to you and your household!

Thanks for reading.

N A S H A M B E R

29 November 2012

The Potters Wheel

This is a special post to me and I could literally write a book on this one experience and go into detail on how a few verses have changed my heart and perspective in life, I am going to attempt to keep it short and sweet. If you do have questions, please ask/ comment just below and I will expand. 

I have mentioned before about me being in a state of brokenness, pain and hurt in the past. I used to ask myself, how does one become whole after being broken so many times and wounded countless of times...is it even possible? I cried and poured out my heart to God so much on this subject!! Then the Lord used His word to minister to me! 

Jeremiah 18:1-6 

1 The word which came to Jeremiah from the Lord, saying, 
2 Arise, and go down to the potter's house, and there I will cause thee to hear my words. 
3 Then I went down to the potter's house, and, behold, he wrought a work on the wheels. 
4 And the vessel that he made of clay was marred [ruined] in the hand of the potter: so he made it again another vessel, as seemed good to the potter to make it. 
5 Then the word of the Lord came to me, saying, 
6 O house of Israel, cannot I do with you as this potter? saith the Lord. Behold, as the clay is in the potter's hand, so are ye in mine hand, O house of Israel. 

God instructed Jeremiah to go where the potter was, and then likened what that potter was doing to how Israel was to Him; being IN His hand. What stood out to me was verse 4 & 6; the fact that the clay was already IN the hand of the potter when it got ruined…BUT the potter didn't dispose of that clay…he simply took it and started over and made it into something else.The question the Lord asked him was and still is a lot of things! #HOPE 

We are that clay in God’s hand. We can be reused and reshaped into something GREAT for Jesus. I was deeply comforted in the fact that the clay that got spoiled was not done away with, but was reused! It gave me so much hope, from where I was, and even till this day, I remind myself of that. 

Being a visual learner, I really wanted to understand this in practice, so I said 'I want to go to a pottery class'. I want to understand HOW this process works so I can fully get the experience. 

I wanted to go for my 22nd Birthday but it didn’t happen. For my 23rd my sister remembered that I wanted to go and organised it for me! I went to the Pottery class with her and it seemed to have come at such a perfect time! Everything just made sense, especially as we had been meditating on Psalms 139, which again is about how HE knows me/us and formed us and so much more! 

Only once I actually started renewing my mind on how I view my Maker and the capabilities He has, was I able to rest and know that I am NOT a challenge for Jesus. Renewing the mind with the Word is a must if you want to be transformed and come away from a corrupt and negative mindset. 

As a result...of me growing in faithfulness to Christ, studying, believing (no matter how I felt), praying and declaring His word over me; Change took place and is still taking place. 

Thank you AdeLady for a BEAUTIFUL & THOUGHTFUL birthday gift! I LOVE YOU DEARLY!
......

The beautiful wheel


Preparing the clay





Air has to be needed out of the clay so that it is supple when it is ready to be shaped...
So when you feel hard pressed at times, it could well be you going through this part of the process.



Me giving it a go
Now the experienced potter teaches me and shows me how it's done. He made it look so easy, that was so not the case...It showed me how easy it is for God to reshape us, because HE is an EXPERT! Through years of experience, this gentleman is now able to just do this craft, so how much more God, who is in eternity. He is FULLY able to deal with any of us. That is SO comforting.



God is so specific and for Him to liken us unto clay and Himself the Potter was so deep to me, especially as clay simply MOULDS to the potters shaping. The gentleman shared that the clay will take form of the shape of my hands, therefore my hands had to be firm. 

But now, O LORD, thou art our father; we are the clay, and thou our potter; and we all are the work of thy hand.~ Isaiah 64:8






He said he can shape it into ANYTHING he chooses. Reminded me that the Lord has many choices with us! 


No make up me...woop
He made it look so easy! 
Made by other people - We got happy when we saw the little cute sheep.
Jesus said 'My sheep hear my voice, and I know them, and they follow me:
And I give unto them eternal life; and they shall never perish, neither shall any man pluck them out of my hand. (John 10:27-28And a stranger will they not follow, but will flee from him: for they know not the voice of strangers.' (John 10:5) 

Do you hear Him? Are you a sheep?
Hand made and so pretty.
N A S H A M B E R as the potter


Ready......Steady...

GO!
The wheel has to spin round so fast! Messy business!
This requires SO much technique. Just by being the 'potter' (hehe) for those hours, I really saw how GOD KNOWS what He is doing, because HE is totally skilled. Not one of us were rushed, but HE held us and still does hold us FIRMLY in His hands, as long as WE are willing to stay on the wheel. 


Hardest part for me, was getting the shape to stand up right. The guy said to us, that we must move our fingers, ever so slowly as ANY quick movement could potentially cause the clay to be marred/ruined. 


I was trying so hard to get the skill right...


...but I moved my hands too fast and look.... It was ruined, within a matter of SECONDS! Reminds me of how in life, it can take you years to build something, but seconds or minutes to destroy it. It is so key that we remain diligent in allowing God to mould us slowly but surely, with His word!


I asked him, what will happen to the clay as it got ruined, and the man explained that the clay can be used again, but it first has to be put back into the bag to dry up a bit and also 'rest' for a while until it is ready to be used again!

I was thinking OK! That makes sense, as sometimes in life, it seems like not much is happening with you. God just needs you to be replenished before He picks you up again to remold you. There is a cooling off period even for clay, so how much more us. After taking us away from situations in life, He needs us to just chill for a while, before we get back onto that wheel and begin to be shaped into the NEW vessel! #Exciting! 



Second time round. I was not about to have another model be ruined in my hands. 
Hands were so firm this time! 



I was so not impressed, it was not going right for meee..I thought it was going to crumble again!
Ever felt like that about your life?...Make sure you have a good attitude through your processes in life, it helps you to move along a lot quicker.



Notice how the clay didn't start questioning me about what I was making, and why I was making it that way. It didn't present to me a list of all the qualities it would like to have and demand I make it like so, or compare itself to another vessel...It simply moved with me. 

That's how we should be with God! Trusting Him and moving with Him, without questioning Him on why He is doing what He is doing, and projecting how we don't agree or like what He is doing.

Romans 9:20 But indeed, O man, who are you to reply against God? Will the thing formed say to him who formed it, “Why have you made me like this?” 21 Does not the potter have power over the clay, from the same lump to make one vessel for honor and another for dishonor?

Thanking the Lord for the eyelashes He made me with! #Perfect
As I start to get it.
Psalms 37: 4 Delight thyself also in the Lord: and He shall give thee the desires of thine heart. 5 Commit thy way unto the Lord; trust also in him; and He shall bring it to pass.

HE GIVES YOU THE DESIRES!!!! HE BRINGS IT TO PASS :D 




Check the skills! I picked it up well, second time round. Thank you Jesus, for second, third, fourth and more chances. First time was a shambles, it totally fell apart, but for me on my second time, I GOT it!

DO NOT GIVE UP. Psalms 37:5 Commit thy way unto the Lord; trust also in him; and He shall bring it to pass.






My Product! Oh YES! I am sure Jesus smiles just as much, when He finishes with us and presents us.

Being confident of this very thing, that He which hath begun a good work in you will perform it until the day of Jesus Christ: ~ Phil 1:6


AdeLady as the potter.




She got it right first time round! :D 
She is so BEAUTIFUL! Inside and OUT!



The potters! :D 

I will not forget this experience. I had so much FUN, and plan to go back to finish what I started!

Another passage that helped me to make a decision to simply BELIEVE God was the story of the guy by the pool who had been in the same condition for 38 years (John 5:1-9).Now at age 22 I felt like that guy...being in the same condition, feeling helpless forages & believing the lie that I was too broken to be fixed! It just got LONG!

At the time when I was entertaining the unhealthy brokenness, The Lord put it to me like this...Do YOU want to be well Nash?...Do you wantto change or are you going to just sit there complaining about all the reasonswhy you are there in the same place, same brokenness, same warped mind-set?... Do YOU really want to be whole?

My answer was and still is YES and I have been prepared to make any changes necessary to be shaped into the Original Nash He formed. 

What about you? What is your decision? What lie have you been believing above His truth? 
Do you want to be whole? 

I would LOVE to hear from you. Comment, ask questions, or simply share what you have got from this post. It is always nice to share what we get from His word.

With Love

N A S H M B E R