Uncomfort Zone

“Get a sketch pad, a pencil, and some colored pencils.” Me? Lord, you know I don’t draw. This obviously was going to be a new challenge in my life. For those who know me, know I do not draw well. But if God asks me to do something, I am going to do it. So I bought a sketch pad, a pencil, and a box of colored pencils. They sat in the bag from the store on the floor by my desk in my office for days. Saturday morning God said, “Sketch.” Lord, I have about 15 minutes before I have to get ready to head to a Rolling Shack event at Providence. “Sketch.” I went to my office, pulled out my pad, pencil, and colored pencils and just sat. People, I cannot draw and I need to make something happen in 15 minutes. If I could design anything, what would I draw?  I immediately thought of a high end boutique in La Paz Bolivia that I visited. I love fashion and this dress there caught my eye. It was color blocked and it had a “deconstructed” feel to it. Ok, here goes. I started drawing, erasing, drawing, erasing…. Then I thought man I really love this pencil thing. I can erase.  I cannot remember the last time I used a pencil. For me, I express myself better with words than pictures. I started writing words; deconstructed, frayed, flowy, and Aguayo.  I kept drawing. My 15 minutes was up. I thought, I didn’t really accomplish much and ran down the stairs to go get ready. As I was running down the stairs, I started thinking what if I took the deconstructed thought process and brought it to Sutisana's Se Llama Llama shirt in a form of an Aguayo pocket. Then what if I took this embroidered llama theme that we were going to use on the men’s polo shirt and brought it to this idea?  By the time I got to the shower, I realized that we had the makings of our next Se Llama Llama collection. 15 minutes spent drawing, led to a new design idea. Hmmm….

Sunday morning I woke up and looked for my sketch pad. What if I took some time and really sat with my pad, a cup of coffee, and some music, what would happen? My attitude changed. Now I had the power of a pencil. If I drew something that didn’t work for me, I could erase it. Nothing was permanent. Now THAT opened my world. Boris from Dunamis is coming to visit us on Friday. He is bringing our tagua nut prototype rings. What if I sketched some new designs? I didn’t know if I could do this. Marisa, you have an eraser. I just started drawing. One idea, led to another idea that led to another. What I realized is that I enjoyed doing this. Who would have thought?!?!  I sent a picture of my drawing to Boris with 2 rules. You know me, I love my rules. 1. Boris, you cannot laugh at my drawings. I never claimed to be an artist. 2. If you don’t like the designs, just say it. Honestly it won’t hurt my feelings. This is a collaboration. But to be honest, it's really not about whether these designs make it to production. It's about my willingness to try something new, something I feel uncertain of. This is where I grow.

Isn’t it amazing how the world teaches us to live in our comfort zone? It’s easy, safe, and there is little fear of rejection. For me, that world is numbers and finance. There are rules in that world and everything can be, well, predictable. God is asking me to step into my “uncomfort” zone. This has been an ongoing place called The Marketplace. This is an unpredictable world where I can be easily ridiculed, rejected, and the risk of failure is high. But something amazing happens when you decide to step in your “uncomfort” zone, you realize a whole new you that you didn’t know existed. When God calls you to play in the “uncomfort” zone, you quickly realize the world’s rules don’t always apply. He wants you to dream without borders. This is where you not only grow, but this is where you soar.

What is God asking you to try that is so outside your comfort zone? There is a part of you that wants to try it but then the other part of you is petrified. Are you afraid that people will think you are crazy? News flash, they probably already think that! Are you afraid of failure? Failure isn’t always a bad thing. Failure can lead you one step closer to realizing a dream. I challenge you as you head into this week to get into your “uncomfort” zone. Amazing things can happen when you try something new.

Have a great week guys!

 

 

I will instruct you and teach you in the way you should go; I will counsel you and watch over you. Psalm 32:8

God impressed this verse upon my heart before I stepped foot out of the country to go to Bolivia. A lot of people didn’t know what I was doing when I went to Bolivia. Heck- I didn’t know what I was doing when I boarded the plane-literally! The plan was I was going to design the entire Fall 2016 Collection for SutiSana with Word Made Flesh Bolivia. Am I a designer? No.... Do I have a fashion background? No. Can I even draw? No. Here I was boarding the plane with a notebook of sketches and designs. Were they going to work? I had no idea. Would I be able to get the raw materials necessary to make these “ideas”? Your guess was as good as mine. All I knew for certain was Psalm 32:8, God had this.

A beautiful thing happened in La Paz every morning about 3 am. I would wake up and ideas would start coming. I would start to write and create. All the designs that seemed like a mishmash of ideas had a common thread. It was all about a journey. I have to admit, it was good! God showed me a lot on this trip both personally and professionally. God helped me truly “experience” greater is He who has created me to be. I needed to go with what He gave me even when it went against the norm. This truly was a collection that God created. Remember Guys, my background is in finance. He gets the glory for this collection, I just got to work on it. We still have more from this collection that we have not unveiled yet.  That’s coming soon.

Do we really believe Psalm 32:8? Will we listen when He instructs us? When I 1st felt God wanted me to go to Bolivia, I didn’t want to go. I fought it for a couple of months. Then I bought my ticket and said I will create 1 bag and help with business ideas. A couple of weeks before I was to go, I found out I was the designer of the entire collection!! Now I really didn’t want to go! I was given the ability to single handedly destroy an entire income generating project!! GREAT. I had to quit hyperventilating and say “God, you have a plan for me in Bolivia and you are going to tell me what to do.” Does trusting God look pretty? No, actually at times it looks downright frightening. For me, it never gets easier. The assignments appear to get harder! Way to sell following God, Marisa! But I will say this, the adventure is amazing!!

As you head into this week, really think about what God is calling you to do. I speak from experience, if it is so beyond you- yep that’s Him. Then do it.

Have a great week!

 

 

God Given Momentum

Everyone who knows The Marketplace from its inception knows what an uphill battle we have faced. We heard so many "NO'S", "this idea will never work", "you will fail", "you don't have enough resources in time and money"... I could go on and on but I think you get the picture. Instead of being discouraged by each obstacle, we chose to let it fuel the fire. You see, I believe obstacles are not a bad thing. Hear me out on this. Obstacles let you know what you are made of, and that you are on the right path. You got the enemy running scared!

For us every time we approached an obstacle, we didn't look at it as a STOP. Instead we looked at it as a way to be more creative. Here is a picture image. All of us are standing back looking at this hurdle, scratching our heads, and discussing the best possible course of action. Sometimes we didn't have a clue so we just waited. We knew God was in this and He would either remove the hurdle or give us the momentum to clear it.

How you view obstacles in your life will determine the outcome. You make that choice. It can either defeat you or propel you. Just as Elisha prayed in 2 Kings 6:17, O Lord, open his eyes so he may see. We pray the same prayer before we attempt the hurdle. That prayer changes your perspective. We realize that we are not in it alone and we have the power of the Lord's army behind us. I would like to say we looked like this dancer every time we cleared a hurdle but that would not be true. Often times we just barely made it over!

Whatever obstacle you are facing this week may seem insurmountable. But try this, as you look at it ask God to open your eyes and see things the way they really are. This could be a game changer for you.

 

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Cornelius, NC 28031

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