Friday Quote

ftcquote

“And don’t be wishing you were someplace else or with someone else. Where you are right now is God’s place for you. Live and obey and love and believe right there. God, not your marital status, defines your life …”

1 Corinthians 7:17 (MSG)

Happy Friday, Friends!

Following,
Ginger

From the bottom of my heart.

thanks

Thank you!

I don’t know if I have the words to say how much I appreciate the kind words and responses that you’ve sent my way since the release of my book. To say I’ve been blown away would be putting it lightly. So I figured I’d just say “thank you” face-to-face. Check out the video below. (If you’re reading through e-mail click on the link!)

Thank You, Thank You! from Ginger Ciminello on Vimeo.

Today I concur with the Apostle Paul:

We felt so strongly about you that we were determined to share with you not only the Good News of God but also our lives. That’s how dear you were to us! 1 Thessalonians 2:8, GWT

Thank you, friends.

Following,
Ginger

The Story of a Story

About two and a half years ago I left my job working in youth ministry at a church to begin working full-time as a writer and speaker. It has been an exciting and crazy journey. I am so thankful for the countless MOPS groups, youth ministries, camps, and schools that have allowed me the opportunity to come and speak. In between speaking prep and connecting through this blog, I have been working on a manuscript. It has been a labor of love, although I certainly haven’t loved every minute of the process. I’ve confessed to you before- I don’t really see myself as a writer but I do believe I have a very specific message to convey.

I lived my entire high school journey in expectation of my senior prom. I had the dress, the heels, and the perfect hair but I didn’t have the date. At the last-minute, I recruited a friend to accompany me. He was to pick me up at the house, escort me to dinner, and drive me to the dance. He was supposed to bring me a corsage. Instead my date arrived to the dance after 10:30pm. (He had a good excuse!) He rushed in to find me standing at the bottom of the escalator that had already delivered my entire senior class to their “Night to Remember.” I had waited by myself for over an hour because I was convinced that I couldn’t enter the dance until I had my date and my corsage. (I did not have a good excuse!) I danced to only three songs that night and spent most of my prom thinking, “No one will ever want me.”

Since that time God has laid those words heavily upon my heart. If I truly am a daughter of the King, then I know the response to my own lament. Not only does Christ want me, but also He has given me an abundant and exciting life. His love provides the courage to live adventurously regardless of any dating status.

That’s the inspiration behind my book, Forget the Corsage.

 cover

Forget the Corsage is a reminder to stop waiting for life to happen to us, but instead to go and live life to the full right now. It can be tempting to buy into the lie that real living starts when we graduate, get the perfect body, find Mr. Right, and land our dream job. But the truth is that we are waiting for something that has already been given to us from God: life to the full.

Who is the target audience? You. I told my first readers that the book was geared toward young women, but then everyone told me that window was too narrow. Not only was the age gap to small, but so was the gender gap. Although I’m addressing women in the book, I think guys could find it interesting and helpful as well.

What kind of book is this? This book is in the form of a spiritual memoir. You will find it filed under “Non-Fiction Religion/Spirituality.” It is written in first person so that the experiences could be shared directly and straight from the heart. I wanted to connect with the reader in a very personal way. This is the story of a young woman who believed two lies:

(1.) That she was unwanted and undesired

(2.) That her life would only begin when she found “The One.”

This is also the story of a God who taught her fragile heart to trust that His good IS good.

Where can I find this book? The book is currently listed with Westbow Press, Amazon.com, and Barnes and Noble. I’m hoping to get the book into some local bookstores near my home and to some of the places I speak most often. (Hello, Texas!) The book is available in hard back, soft cover, and ebook. It is currently available for order!

What’s next? I’m hopeful that I will develop a way for you to order the ebook straight from this website. I have a webpage for my book that is almost finished. (I was holding revealing all the details about the book until EVERYTHING was done, but when is EVERYTHING ever done?) The new site will keep anyone interested with information about book signings, speaking engagements, and any new developments with the book.

I’m honored and blessed by the response that this little book has received so far. Thank you for the love you’ve shown through texts, Facebook, Twitter, and personal e-mails. You’ve made my year!

 Screen shot 2013-09-09 at 4.07.43 PMScreen shot 2013-09-09 at 4.07.30 PM

Much of the next steps are going to be grassroots efforts and require a lot of work, but I’m excited for the coming months. If you are interested in being a part of this next phase, feel free to contact me through the CONTACT GINGER tab at the top of the page! In the meantime, spread the word, snag a copy of the book, leave a review of the book on one of the websites, and know that I’m looking for opportunities to speak to groups and share this message!

More to come …

Following,
Ginger

Life Starts Now

dear me

Dear Eighteen year-old me,

I’m looking down at my sleeping daughter as I write this letter to you. You won’t believe the journey that has led from 18 to being thirty-one. It has been an incredible ride. I have so many things that I want to tell you. I could talk for hours and hours with lessons learned and mistakes made… but I know the experience will only serve to grow you and teach you. So instead, I’ll summarize some main points that I hope you learn sooner than later. For starters:

1. Don’t get that perm in two years when you move overseas. Yes, England is damp and wet, but perming your hair won’t fix that. I repeat. It will be 2002. DO NOT GET A PERM.

2. When those guys say, “I don’t think we should date any more,” let yourself be sad. That’s fine. But then repeat these words to yourself: “Rejection is a good thing.” I know it sounds harsh, but relationships end in one of two ways: rejection or marriage. You didn’t want those to be marriage. Trust me.

3. You can spend years trying to “find” yourself, but if you identify yourself with an anchor other than your heavenly Father, you will end up in a road that leads to nowhere. Finding my identity in the Lord has been the most freeing and exciting discovery of my life.

4. Who you are is more important that what you want. Let me see if I can explain. I wanted to be in a romantic relationship but it felt like zero guys were interested. So I decided I needed to lose weight to fix that. Long story short, don’t sell out who you are for anything. Don’t let your story get hijacked by bad decisions.When I know the WHO I want to be it helps me choose my “WHAT AM I GOING TO DO?” Set your heart and mind on who you want to be … a woman of integrity, honor, compassion, and inspiration. Stay true to your identity in the Lord.

5. You can trust the Lord with the desires of your heart. I know it’s confusing when things don’t happen in your timing or within your parameters, but I want to remind you that God loves to give you GOOD gifts! He’s not waiting to throw your decisions in your face or spoil your plans. His good IS good.

6. Your heart is worth guarding and sharing. Ugh. That word “guard” has become such a touchy one. So here’s what I mean. Love yourself enough to protect your heart from unnecessary hurt. Don’t be careless with your time, your body, or your emotions. But don’t wall yourself up from experiencing real relationships either. We have to risk big to win big. Share, give, and receive love with your heart … just don’t settle for the cheap version.

7. Your mistakes don’t define you. I stand here and acknowldege a long list of life mess-ups. I could label myself easily, stand before you and declare:

Hi, I’m Ginger and I’m a recovering food addict.

Hi, I’m Ginger and I’m a liar.

Hi, I’m Ginger and I’m deceitful.

Hi, I’m Ginger and I’m a recovering bulimic.

All of those statements have been true of my life at one time or another, but I am also united with Christ. His past is my past and His future is my future! He calls me Beloved.

Hi, I’m Ginger and I struggle with food and body image, but I am IN CHRIST.

8. Get out of your comfort zone! Sure, it’s safe to sit by yourself, watch t.v. and spend all of your Saturdays at the library, but growth comes when you are willing to take on challenges. I know you like to hold your cards close and are afraid to share too much, but you have got to get past that fear. This life has too much waiting for you and I don’t think it will be found watching reruns of “Everybody Loves Raymond.”

9. God isn’t hiding. I know you want to hear from Him, but don’t make it complicated. He’s not holding out on you. His Word promises that if we seek Him we will find Him. Hayley Dimarco says, “You cannot seek anyone with all your heart in your spare time.” True that. Give Him your time and attention and then be patient. Sometimes He wants you to take a step even if you don’t know what the path ahead looks like. Be brave and keep seeking.

10. Life starts now. Oh, Ginger. This is the message I want you to get through your head and into your heart. Your life will not start when some guy to rides up on a white horse and invites you to be the heroine of his story. You ARE the heroine. Your heavenly Father has given you an amazing life to live, so why are you stuck waiting for someone else to confirm that truth? Life is not on hold until you find “the one.” Life does not start with a corsage, a diploma, a ring, a job, or even the perfect group of friends. Real life begins with Jesus.

Love,
This Ginger

– – – –

These are the truths I would tell my eighteen year-old self. Those main points (really, rethink the perm) are what I would share with any woman if we had the chance to sit down and share a cup of coffee and an hour of time together. So, of course, those are the points that shaped my first book. I can’t wait to share Forget the Corsage with you.

 forget the corsage

More to come…

Following,
Ginger