Tag Archive | Beauty

5 Time-Tested Tips on Wedding Planning

While preparing for my own wedding, I had two dreadful dreams.

First, our wedding day finally came. All our guests were so excited to witness our most awaited day but to our surprise, there were no flowers in our wedding venue. In my next dream, my groom and I had finally exchanged our vows but when it was time for us to exchange tokens of love (i.e. wedding bands), our officiant informed us that the rings somehow are missing!

What horrible dreams they were!

Thank God the opposite happened on our wedding day. Of course, there were elegant multi-hued flowers and setting that day. Needless to say, we had our wedding rings secured in the right place!

Now, how many more days or months do you have before you tie the knot with the man you want to grow old with?

Yes, it’s fast approaching and it is but natural to feel some tension as you look at your calendar and budget. I would like to share with you some consoling and unwonted wedding planning tips I personally learned in my own journey of wedding planning.

I also earnestly hope you’ll read until the end because there’s a special surprise for you over there. But for now, let’s start with these ones:

1. Pray for God to bless and anoint every detail of your wedding. 

The best stress buster is prayer.

There are things that you may overlook but as you entrust everything to God, He will help you remember things that need to be done.

“Commit thy works unto the Lord, and thy thoughts shall be established.” Proverbs 16:3

2. Focus on what’s important.

Why are you getting married?

Yes, it’s because you want to mark this as a memorial when you commit your relationship to God before the presence of the people you love.

I hope you also have God’s glory in mind, first and foremost.

Pray that God would draw people’s attention to Him as you and your groom honor each other with your vows.

3. Trust that God will provide all your needs.

For this reason I say to you, do not be worried about your life, as to what you will eat or what you will drink; nor for your body, as to what you will put on. Is not life more than food, and the body more than clothing? 26 Look at the birds of the air, that they do not sow, nor reap nor gather into barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not worth much more than they?27 And who of you by being worried can add a single hour to his life? 28 And why are you worried about clothing? Observe how the lilies of the field grow; they do not toil nor do they spin, 29 yet I say to you that not even Solomon in all his glory clothed himself like one of these. 30 But if God so clothes the grass of the field, which is alive today and tomorrow is thrown into the furnace, will He not much more clothe you? You of little faith! 31 Do not worry then, saying, ‘What will we eat?’ or ‘What will we drink?’ or ‘What will we wear for clothing?’32 For the Gentiles eagerly seek all these things; for your heavenly Father knows that you need all these things. 33 But seek first His kingdom and His righteousness, and all these things will be added to you.” Matthew 6:25-33

Deciding to marry your best friend is a leap of faith. You may not have all the exact money you need but as you pray for God’s provision, He will use people. 

My husband and I were in awe of God’s tremendous blessings upon our wedding preparation. Since our friends were excited to see us finally walk down the aisle and be pronounced as husband and wife, they offered help which we did not expect. I am persuaded that God was the One who burdened them to help us in their special ways.

Please remember to give them thank you notes later. 

4. Do things part by part.  Now that you have committed all your plans to God, it’s time to implement them. Try to sit down, take a deep breath and make a check list. Make sure you have the list of the following:

  • Legal Documents–Secure your documents (e.g. Birth Certificate, Certificate of No Marriage [CENOMAR] in the Phils.) and check them off as soon as you finish. 😉 This might help you if you are a Filipino and this one if you’re in the USA. Since my husband and I are from two different countries, he had to ask his parents to send him a notarized CENOMAR from Bangladesh. We had to ask them to send it by mail.

The point is wherever you are from, take some time to visit websites that will help you get your documents ready so you can apply for your marriage certificates.

  • Entourage–Involve your close friends and family members. One of the tips I learned from my married sisters in Christ is to ask your friends and family members to be a part of your entourage by approaching them personally and handing them a note so it can serve as their reminder if you think that they are pretty busy.

You may also ask them to be in-charge of their dress’ cost and let them know that you would count it as their early wedding gift. 😉

  • Guests–This is one of the most challenging decisions to make–choosing whom you should invite. Everyone wants to see your wedding and you also want everyone to witness your special day of exchanging vows with your husband to be. In our case, we asked at least two members of our friends’ and relatives’ families to come.

Take advantage of this ceremony to preach the gospel to your loved ones who are not sure of heaven. Ask your pastor to include the gospel in the ceremony. Wouldn’t it be nice if someone would tell you later that your wedding day became the day of his/her salvation?

  • Delegation–You might be good at multitasking but you don’t have to do everything by yourself. Welcome help and ask your friends and family members to aid you if they are willing and available. In our case, we had our delegates fully in charge of music, flowers, food and event planning.

Our wedding coordinator was kind enough to take care of looking for a good reception venue and we got it a reasonable price of Php 5,000 (around $113)! Learn to communicate with the people whom you have delegated to undertake certain responsibilities and it will contribute a lot to what you have been waiting for! 😉

  • Wedding Program–Borrow a few people’s wedding program copies and try to revise the order of the ceremony according to your preference. You may ask your pastor or someone trustworthy to do this for you as well.
  • Suppliers–I assure you that God would lead you to the suppliers you need. Ask your flower suppliers if he collaborates with a credible catering service. More often than not, they will give unsolicited (in a positive sense) suggestions on how you can avail of different wedding services at reasonable prices!

Don’t forget to take a break and give attention to all the other people around you. 😉 Spend time with them and talk about stuff other than weddings.

5. Expect the unexpected.

Yes, you read it right. On your wedding day proper, there are a few details that won’t work as planned but take it as part of your wedding story. Let it go and relax. Enjoy your day and make your guests feel welcomed to your wedding party.

I know, there may be things I forgot to list down but I do hope that the aforementioned reminders would calm your soul. 🙂

Now, here’s the surprise I told you about. I asked a few of my married friends and fellow bloggers to share their stupendous wedding pieces of advice with you and here they are:

“List every detail, even to the simplest one. After everything is planned, everything is listed, BE FLEXIBLE, RELAX 🙂 Expect disaster or any tiny error. Things will not really go as planned sometimes. A realistic expectation is better than a super perfect wedding but with a bride who can easily go insane with just one tiny detail or delay in the schedule.” -Mrs. Daisy Mae Aguinaldo Eugenio

“It’s been three months since our wedding day and we don’t regret that a big part of our wedding budget went to the photo and video expenses. As many people would say these are the only things that will really stay with you when the wedding is over. Once in a while my husband and I browse our beautiful pictures or watch our heart tugging wedding video and it never fails to bring us back to that very special day. It still gives us chills in a good way. These memories can also be passed down through generations. So I advice to hire good and professional photographer and videographer that’s within your budget.” -Mrs. KC Suk De Guzman

“Leave it to your wedding planner. Focus on your husband to be. The color of your flowers don’t matter so much as your love for each other.” – Mrs. Abra Marie Carnahan of Cafe Mom

“Don’t get lost in the little details so much that it takes your mind off the big picture. In the end the marriage is what matters most, not the wedding details.” -Mrs. Kay Cee Groves of Moral Morsels.

“You will need a small purse the day of the wedding. Be sure to fill it with make-up for touch-ups, gum, a small mirror, safety pins, bobby pins and a small perfume. I thought I had everything planned, but had forgotten this majorly important item! I figured my mom would have everything I needed, but I failed to realize she wouldn’t be with me at all times.” -Mrs. Jessa Nowak of In Wealth and Health.

“Number the RSVP cards and save the names and numbers in a spreadsheet. People constantly forget to RSVP with their name and we got blank cards back.” – Mrs. Abra Marie Carnahan of Mere Breath

“Be prepared for the worst but expect for the best. You are to begin a life together. You will have bitter-sweet experiences. Yes, you will see flaws and faults along the way but you must also believe and trust God’s work in both you and your partner. Both of you are work in progress so be willing to let God work. God will be the One to mold your husband, not you. So there’s assurance that He will be better. And remember to allow God to work in you first before you expect your partner to be better. Most of the time God wants to change us first before we expect the change in our partners. He wants us to be fully dependent on Him as we allow Him to deal with every area in the relationship.” -Mrs. Cath Quizon

“Just be yourself. While it’s great to look at wedding blogs to get inspired, sometimes you end up copying, or trying to make your wedding like someone else’s. Take a step back. Remember that, aside from the fact that the primary goal of a wedding should be to picture Christ and His bride, this day is about you and the man you love. Celebrate what makes you unique… don’t try to impress others or think that you have to make your wedding fit into a certain mold.” -Mrs. Julia Potts Valle

“One of my friend’s advice? “Open your legs.” I hope I’m not shocking you, but it was so funny. Especially with her strong Dominican accent. You don’t have to use that – just thought I would add a touch of humour here.” -Mrs. Jennie Lawlis Goutet of A Lady in France

Think carefully about what you want your wedding to say about you and your future husband. Even though this is “your” day, you want everything that is done to glorify your Lord. In addition, your wedding should reflect who you are – music that you have chosen, colors and styles that you prefer, vows that mean something to you, traditions (even new ones) that reflect your personality. Your wedding says something about you – it can be a testimony of God’s grace in your life, and a meaningful event that speaks of who you and your groom are as individuals about to become one. Mrs. Ruth Bachorik

“Ask around at your church to see if anyone does cakes, photos, or other services. We were blessed with our church family’s talents. Look online for deals (80% of our wedding supplies came from online for much less than we would have spent on it finding it in stores).Take time to savor every moment of the special day, it flies by fast. Don’t forget, your wonderful groom to be will not ever be enough to fill your God-shaped hole. That’s my top advice, you can use any or none of it….Don’t lock your knees…people pass out in ceremonies all the time when they lock their knees while standing….” -Mrs. Robbi Bittle of About a Chick.

Eat a full meal before you put on the dress! Even if you have a dinner afterwards you will either A) be too nervous that you will make a mess on your uber expensive dress or B) like Samantha Ford-Godette said, be too busy to eat at all! My wedding day I got a handful of almonds, one bite of cake, and a bag of jalapeno chips.” -Mrs. Amy Dickerson of Accidental Happy Baker

Please get these words of wisdom “with all thy getting.”

Before I forget, congratulations on your wedding! May God bless you and your husband-to-be!

Please keep in mind these consoling and unwonted tips on wedding planning. I hope they indeed helped you! ❤

Written with lots of love,
Nance 😉

What Makes a Woman Beautiful?


That’s one of the English words I learned as a child. It was one of the challenging words for me to spell back then too! 😉

Kidding aside, this word is one of the most encouraging words anyone could hear. Consequently, becoming beautiful is what most of us strive to be–we want to be beautiful in and out.

Women, especially, even invest in becoming physically attractive.

According to a survey done by Worldwatch Institute, $8 billion are spent on cosmetics ALONE each year by American women.  Please note that cosmetics ranked second in American’s top commodities. I am sure that it’s the same way in Asia or in other parts of the world.

One report even stated:

“If you look at the entire worldwide cosmetic industry, sales reach about $170 Billion dollars a year. It’s distributed pretty uniformly around the world with ~$40 billion in the Americas, ~$60 billion in Europe, ~$60 billion in Australia & Asia, and another $10 billion in Africa. The Western world spends a bit more per person but India and Asia are quickly catching up.” -Worldwide Cosmetic Market

Please refrain from thinking that I am against make-up. No! I also love buying a few cosmetics. Nothing wrong with that. 🙂

By now, I am quite confident that you can agree that ladies place a high value on how they look before others. I am sure that you, just like me, are also one of those women who endeavor to keep yourself physically clean and beautiful. That’s wonderful!

It’s also part of being a good testimony to those unbelievers of Christ. Besides, even one preacher once said to this effect, “If the barns need painting, paint it!”

“If the barns need painting, paint it.”

The question though is “What really does make a woman beautiful?” Is it just the cosmetics and variety of beauty regime that beautify a woman? Is it surgery? How about shoes, accessories, and apparels? To some degrees, the ones I just mentioned, indeed, can affect how one looks. I don’t want to sound too dogmatic.

One popular celebrity, Audrey Hepburn, ascertained beauty this way though,

“The beauty of a woman is not in the clothes she wears, the figure that she carries, or the way she combs her hair. The beauty of a woman is seen in her eyes, because that is the doorway to her heart, the place where love resides. True beauty in a woman’s reflected in her soul. It’s the caring that she lovingly gives, the passion that she shows & the beauty of a woman only grows with passing years.”

She also worded one indispensable beauty tip,

“For beautiful eyes, look for the good in others; for beautiful lips, speak only words of kindness; and for poise, walk with the knowledge that you are never alone.”

This is quite an inspiring encouragement, isn’t it? How much more pertinent it is if we can learn about the kind of beauty that pleases God, the Master of Beauty. What does He think about beauty? I am persuaded that God, as our Creator, knows how to teach His creatures to REALLY be beautiful, not only before men but most importantly, before His eyes.

1. A surrendered and submissive woman is beautiful.

Paul wrote,

“Therefore I urge you, brethren, by the mercies of God, to present your bodies a living and holy sacrifice, acceptable to God, which is your spiritual service of worship. And do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, so that you may prove what the will of God is, that which is good and acceptable and perfect.” Romans 12:1-2 (NASB)

This is an encouragement for all women, whether single or married. It is God’s desire that we surrender our whole being to Him.

Being submissive and surrendered to Him doesn’t always mean leaving one’s career and being in a full-time ministry. It just means being sold-out for God!

In addition to that, surrender and submission entail dependence on God as we try to make a difference in this world.

It means trusting His word in every decision we make.

It means displaying our recognition of His thoughts to be better than ours even if taking a stand for Christ leads to our persecution.

Needless to say, it also means doing the tasks He has called us to do in our field with a cheerful spirit. (I need to work on this myself!)

Only then can we be beautiful in His sight.

2. A woman who speaks kindly is beautiful.

 She opens her mouth in wisdom, And the teaching of kindness is on her tongue. Proverbs 31:26 (NASB)

It is one thing to speak kindly to lovable people and another thing to speak words of kindness to people who don’t deserve our benevolent treatment.

King Solomon describes that a virtuous woman who is also beautiful in God’s eyes utters words of kindness.

It’s challenging I know, but God’s grace is enough to enable us to choose words kindness over nasty ones when we face difficult people.

“Did you mean that I have to speak words of kindness to people who criticize me day in and out?” Yes, we must if we want to please our God. Again I say boldly, “Yes, we must do so.”

One key to keeping our speech sweet is by saturating our mind with teachings of God’s word.

As it has been said, “Garbage in, garbage out.”

What would come out of our mouth is rooted from the things we allow to run through our minds.

3. A woman devoted to God’s Word is beautiful.

What is our priority in our life? What priority in life would make us beautiful and commendable in God’s sight?

Jesus Himself commended Mary, the sister of Lazarus and Martha, for not keeping herself busy with the work of the Lord but with the Lord of the work. Mary thought that there is only “one needful thing” in this world –to spend time at the feet of Jesus Christ.

Being a woman, I guess, entails the curse of being crazy over details (or maybe that’s just me). When we think of projects, we think of details. When we think of wedding plans, we think of details. Many women are perfectionists and detail-oriented because that’s how our brain works.

Admittedly or not, we tend to focus on work too much when we are tasked to do something. Consequently, though, we SOMETIMES forget that “one needful thing” God expects from us–a quality time of conversation with Him which includes Bible reading, meditation, and prayer. 

Perhaps you say, “I’m busy. I can’t afford to do that. I need to cook breakfast early in the morning, prepare my kids’ lunch and clean up our home. I also have to do an eight-hour job. I have no more time.”

You are not the only one who struggles with this. I do and everyone else! BUT God wants us to lovingly spend time with Him every day consistently.

Only then can we reflect the beauty of God that stems from a heart that is right with Him. I assure you that when we start our day right with God then He will give us a joyful countenance. It is a joyful countenance that comes from knowing that He will help us as we fulfill our tasks daily and face our trials with an assurance of His help. He will give us songs even when our heart is heavy.

I remember one little notepad posted on my friend’s office desk which says something to this effect,

“God stretches our time when we give him the first part of our day.”

I have proven this myself and I am sure you did too. Let’s pray for God to help us do this consistently until He comes.

4. A modest woman is beautiful.

Yes, remaining modest is one of the struggles women have in this generation. Why? I’m sad to say that Satan tempts women to compete in showing as much as skin as they can.

Unless we are surrendered to the authority of God’s word, we will always fall into the pit that Satan has put before us to make insipid (i.e. immodest) fashion style.

Remember this important verse:

“I also want the women to dress modestly, with decency and propriety, adorning themselves, not with elaborate hairstyles or gold or pearls or expensive clothes, but with good deeds, appropriate for women who profess to worship God.” (1 Timothy 2:9-10)

The verse is clear enough. God desires that the beauty we portray in public radiates, not because of our dresses and accessories but rather, because of the good works resulting from our worship of Him.

Now, I may have written much more than usual but I believe that we need to hear these reminders from the Bible.

Every day is a challenge to reflect the beauty of God and we can only do that by His grace. It’s one thing to be beautiful in people’s eyes and it’s fully another thing to be beautiful in God’s sight.