Blog

Join Me at the Speak Up Conference {& Giveaway too}

Hey Friends —

I’m curious…what is it you are most afraid of?

speakingFor me, for many years I joined the millions of people in the world with a fear of public speaking.

When I was in elementary school, I peed my pants at school often. (TMI? Sorry.)

Why?

I was too afraid to raise my hand in class. The thought of everyone looking at me was just too much for this shy, insecure, red haired  girl.

Lovely, huh.

After I came to know Jesus, I sensed the Lord wanted me to share my story of addict to overcomer.

I was terrified.

The thought of getting up in front of a room full of women and talk about my former rebellious lifestyle made me want to lose my lunch. Literally.

In 2003, I first heard about Carol Kent’s Speak Up Conference. I knew I should go, especially if I was going to follow God’s lead and speak in front of people.

However, the thought of going to this conference TERRIFIED me, and I chickened out. I couldn’t do it.

Friends, it took me 4 years to gain the courage to face my fears, until finally in 2007, I attended the Speak Up Conference for the first time.

Can I just tell you….the Speak Up Conference changed my life. Literally.

(Recap here.)

Would you believe I’ve been back to Speak Up every year since?!

You betcha!

The tools, instruction, encouragement, and presentation pointers have been crucial to me in my ministry and personal life.

Me, Carol Kent, Jennie Dimkoff

Me, Carol Kent, Jennie Dimkoff

And not only do I attend every year, for the past seven years I’ve been a part of Carol’s Speak Up leadership team, and have the joy of teaching workshops and encouraging fellow speakers.

(This year I’ll be teaching three workshops, leading one keynote devotion, and meeting with lots of speakers 1:1. I’d LOVE to spend time with you!)

You can tell I don’t have fun with this amazing group of leaders at all.

speak-up-laugh-300x192

Speak Up Conference Leadership Team

Kidding. It is a highlight of my ministry year always! (I may or may not bring confetti wands with me.)

Sweet friend, if you dream of speaking or writing, I’d love for you to prayerfully consider attending the Speak Up Conference this July 13-15, 2017 in Grand Rapids, MI.

Whether you sit in PTO meetings, serve in your local GEMS Girls’ Club, lead your local Bible study, dream of writing a book, or simply want to be more comfortable talking in front of others—I think everyone can benefit from the principles at this amazing conference. You will learn, laugh, network, and come home equipped, inspired, and empowered!

You can learn more about the details of the amazing Speak Up Conference here.

If I could, I would pay for everyone I know who senses God is calling them to write, speak or lead in ministry to attend. Since I’m not able to do that (bummer), I can go to Bonnie (the Speak Up Administrator) and ask how we could help interested participants attend.

Drumroll please…

I’m thrilled to announce I have a $200 partial scholarship to giveaway!

Can I get a woo hoo?!

To Win my Speak Up Conference $200 Scholarship Giveaway: Please leave a comment in the comment section answering this question:

Why would you like to win a $200 scholarship for the Speak Up Conference?

Extra Entries:
•Follow my blog *She Sparkles*
•Share about this giveaway on FB
•Tweet about this giveaway including a link to this post

Please be sure to leave me a comment to let me know your extra entries.

RULES: Starts today, Monday, May 1st and ends Friday, May 5th at 9 PM. Winner will be contacted the week of May 8th.

If your email address is not connected to your ID, please leave your email address with your comment or email it to me at cindy@cindybultema.com with the subject “Giveaway”.

Thanks so much for stopping by my blog, *She Sparkles*! God’s richest blessings to you!

 

 

Disclosure: I was not compensated in any way for this review (I just love the Speak Up Conference) and, as always, all opinions expressed in this post are fully my own.

3 Tips for Social Media Sanity for Kids

social media basket

Hey Friends —

One of the hardest challenges for me as mom has been navigating social media— especially with my gang.

My Gang

As you know, John and I are blessed with 4 kiddos— ages 13, 14, 15 & 22.

Most of our daily conversations go something like this, or so it seems:

  • “Phones away, please.”
  • “Ahem. Phones away.”
  • “I said, ‘Put your phones away.'”
  • “No screen time until your chores are done.”
  • “If I see your phone one more time, it’s gone for a week.”

Am I the only one?!

I’ve spent much time studying, implementing, reworking, praying, talking to other moms, pinning, & praying more. Here’s what I’ve learned so far.

3 Tips for Surviving Social Media with Kids

1. Set Boundaries

My rule for the kids & their friends: Everyone is welcome, but check your IPod/iPhone at the door.

My rule for the kids & their friends: Everyone is welcome, but check your IPod/iPhone at the door.

If clear boundaries are not set, my kids would text/watch Youtube videos/face time all day long. AHHHH!

Boundaries we’ve set include:

  • Time limits (chores first, limited time, etc.)
  • No technology in bedrooms
  • Phones/iPods go in Mom’s basket when friends come over (have you ever noticed you’ll have 4 kids together and they’ll all be texting each other rather than talking.) Crazy!
  • Sign a Social Media Contract. I found a great one here. (You can download it for free.)
  • Passwords must be known by a parent at all times, and yes, I will check, read, be in your business, and stalk you on-line. Get used to it. 🙂

2. Stay Involved

As I mentioned, yes, I read their texts, posts, Instagram pictures, etc. I am that mom.

It drives my kids crazy—but, yes, I do stalk my children.

I’ve also found it very helpful to discuss social media with other involved moms to learn about apps to stay away from, websites to watch out for, etc.

untitled1We’ve also been having a lot of family time to discuss “hot topics” like cyber-bullying, porn, internet crime, and more.

In fact, last year over ice cream we read this book together as a family. Good stuff!

What ways have you found work best to stay involved with what your kids are doing on-line? I’d love to learn from you too!

 

3. Share Kindness

In our  “selfie generation,” (read this!) I’m trying to survive social media by reminding my gang to use social media for good.

Rather than only playing games and taking selfies, I remind my kids to share kindness through social media. I’m asking,

grandma rule“Who can you encourage? How can you be helpful to someone today? In what ways can you spread joy?”

And yes, they usually roll their eyes at me—but I’ve also seen them leave some group chats that were headed south quickly.

And remember “The Grandma Rule”: “If you wouldn’t show it, say it, or text it to grandma, don’t post, type, or send it!”

 

Additionally, I’ve learned I need to model healthy social media skills myself.

Screenshot 2014-07-19 00.31.19I can’t remind my gang of time limits and then text away all day myself. I must also set boundaries and limits — and then stick to them!

For more Social Media Strategies with Kids, check out my Pinterest page here.

Your turn, friends!

How are you navigating the ever-changing world of social media, especially with our children?

Are there apps you’ve found to be helpful— or not so much — with your kids?

Do you set time limits or boundaries? Stalk your kids on-line? I’d love to hear from you!

Thanks so much for stopping by, sweet friend! Have a wonderful, joy-filled week!

CindyBultema_Signature

 

 

 

5 Strategies for a Season of Sanity and Peace

Hey Friends —

Happy April! How are you these days? Really?

True confession time.

My life is a little bit nutty these days.

Ok. More like big time.

The GEMS team

Our full family calendar + my new full-time job at GEMS Girls’ Club (which I love) + full March speaking calendar + making meals (why do we have to eat dinner every night) + book launch stuff + one million emails (or so) + trying to figure out what to wear to work every. single. day (how do people do this?) = one frazzled, overly committed mama.

But no more.

Instead I’ve been intentional and prayerful about creating different choices and habits for 2017.

God knew I would be entering into this full season, and I trust He’ll give me wisdom moving forward. And as I prayerfully reflect on the life of Jesus, I’ve noticed 5 things that Jesus didn’t do, and maybe I—maybe we—shouldn’t either.

WJDD – What Jesus Didn’t Do

1. Jesus didn’t worry about what everyone else would think.

We don’t see Him wrestling with people pleasing. Jesus was never like, “Oh no, they’re going to be disappointed if I don’t have coffee with them, FB message them back, or bring a meal.”

Jesus made choices He knew would not please others. He was intimately aware of His specific purpose and calling, focusing on His specific Kingdom assignment, He didn’t need the approval and admiration of others.

2. Jesus didn’t compare Himself with others.

Jesus wasn’t on FB or Pinterest thinking – “I wish I looked more like Peter (built like a rock), or had fast running legs like John.”

Nope.

Jesus’ days were not filled comparing or competing, but only completing the work God assigned to Him.

3. Jesus didn’t overfill His days.

We don’t see Jesus running from need to need, demand to demand, sun up to sun down with too much to do and no space even to take a breath.

His pace was one of purpose, not persistently hurried and rushed.

Jesus took time to rest, pray, celebrate, breathe, and enjoy the company of those closest to Him.

He said “no” to good things to save strength and energy for all the God things to accomplish.

4. Jesus didn’t fill His days with “should’s.”

Isn’t this good news? I couldn’t find even one “should” in the Gospels (not even in the original Greek). Never did Jesus say….

  • I should serve since no one else is willing.
  • I should try and return every FB message within 24 hours.
  • I should send out one more email.

Jesus was closely connected to His heavenly Father, and He knew what assignments were His to complete. He did so joyfully—letting go of all unrealistic expectations and “should’s,” even if it meant that He would disappoint others. (ouch)

5. Jesus didn’t do everything Himself.

In the Bible, we observe Jesus training and equipping others to help Him complete His work.

Would it be perfect? No. Clearly His disciples were still learning. Yet Jesus saw the value of involving others to help, and experienced the joy of watching His disciples use their gifts and talents for His Kingdom work.

In other words, yes, my kids should cook dinner for now on. 🙂

Ok friends, your turn.

As you look over the WJDD list, are there any surprises?

Which is the hardest for you to carry out in your everyday life?

What one strategy could you implement in your life this season? I’d love to hear from you!

Let’s pray: Oh God, thank You for Your love and grace in our lives. Thank You for Jesus and His perfect example. Help us, Lord, to learn from His pace of purpose, and pursue a life of intention and peace. For Your glory alone. In Jesus’ Powerful Name. Amen.

In Freedom,

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...

BlogButton

Cindy_Headshot I’m Cindy—wife, mom, GEMS ED, speaker, author & overcomer. I love coffee, celebrations, & all things sparkly, and believe being real is the only way to live. Once upon a time I was a hopeless addict, but God... {Read More}

Live Full Walk Free

GEMS Girls’ Club

Cindy is a Compassion Ambassador

Cindy’s Interview on The Harvest Show

    Let’s Stay Connected!

Archives

Read More Testimonials

.............................

Cindy Bultema is a breath of fresh air!

"Cindy Bultema is a breath of fresh air! With vulnerable openness, gut-level honesty, down-home humor, and timeless biblical truth, her spoken and written words will inspire you to take an action step toward fresh faith and renewed hope.

Cindy ministers on and off the platform with personal warmth and genuine compassion. As a speaker, author, and mentor to many, Cindy has my highest recommendation!"

 

Carol Kent, Speaker and Author
President, Speak Up Ministries

5.0
2015-03-04T13:50:57+00:00

Carol Kent, Speaker and Author
President, Speak Up Ministries

"Cindy Bultema is a breath of fresh air! With vulnerable openness, gut-level honesty, down-home humor, and timeless biblical truth, her spoken and written words will inspire you to take an action step toward fresh faith and renewed hope. Cindy ministers on and off the platform with personal warmth and genuine compassion. As a speaker, author, and mentor to many, Cindy has my highest recommendation!"  

Cindy mentioned each woman at least once by name throughout her sessions.

"As women's ministry leaders know, finding a speaker who is Right AND Relevant is quite a task.

God led us to Cindy last spring as a speaker for our fall retreat at Mackinac Island. Even then, I did not realize what a gifted messenger she would be.

With almost 70 women present, Cindy mentioned each woman at least once by name throughout her sessions. She did not shrink back from telling her testimony, as difficult as it must have been. And she opened the book of Revelation to our ladies with insight and application like few women I have ever heard.

Thank you, Cindy for marking this retreat as a milestone in women's ministries at Woodside Bible Church. Praying we will never be the same."

 

Shari Hulcy, Women's Ministries Director
Woodside Bible Church, White Lake, MI

5.0
2015-03-04T15:14:15+00:00

Shari Hulcy, Women's Ministries Director
Woodside Bible Church, White Lake, MI

"As women's ministry leaders know, finding a speaker who is Right AND Relevant is quite a task. God led us to Cindy last spring as a speaker for our fall retreat at Mackinac Island. Even then, I did not realize what a gifted messenger she would be. With almost 70 women present, Cindy mentioned each woman at least once by name throughout her sessions. She did not shrink back from telling her testimony, as difficult as it must have been. And she opened the book of Revelation to our ladies with insight and application like few women I have ever heard. Thank you, Cindy for marking this retreat as a milestone in women's ministries at Woodside Bible Church. Praying we will never be the same."  

Experiencing Cindy speak will awaken you…

"Experiencing Cindy speak will awaken you to timeless truths of scripture made relevant to your life today.

Her amazing story of transformation, coupled with her solid biblical teaching -- not to mention her contagious smile -- will find you walking away in love with her perfect Savior."

 

Karen Ehman, Director of Speakers for Proverbs 31 Ministries; Author

5.0
2015-03-04T15:15:47+00:00

Karen Ehman, Director of Speakers for Proverbs 31 Ministries; Author

"Experiencing Cindy speak will awaken you to timeless truths of scripture made relevant to your life today. Her amazing story of transformation, coupled with her solid biblical teaching -- not to mention her contagious smile -- will find you walking away in love with her perfect Savior."  

Cindy’s enthusiasm for the Lord is contagious…

"You will find no one more highly motivated to see lives changed by God’s love and grace than Cindy. Cindy’s enthusiasm for the Lord is contagious and many women have testified that she has ministered to them from the message she delivered.

Cindy’s personal testimony has been one of transformation for God’s Glory. She continues be used by God through her testimony for the many women who have had similar life circumstances and for others who can see what God can do!"

 

Suzanne Reinink, Director of Adult Ministries
Sunshine Community Church, Grand Rapids, MI

5.0
2015-03-04T15:18:34+00:00

Suzanne Reinink, Director of Adult Ministries
Sunshine Community Church, Grand Rapids, MI

"You will find no one more highly motivated to see lives changed by God’s love and grace than Cindy. Cindy’s enthusiasm for the Lord is contagious and many women have testified that she has ministered to them from the message she delivered. Cindy’s personal testimony has been one of transformation for God’s Glory. She continues be used by God through her testimony for the many women who have had similar life circumstances and for others who can see what God can do!"  

Several attendees have continued to comment on how great she was months after the event.

"Cindy came to Texas and lead three sessions during our overnight Fall Women’s Retreat. Each Biblically based session was well thought out and touched each of us as she dove into finding balance in our unbalanced world. She made sure to tailor the message to our audience of multi-generational women in all stages and phases of life. However, it was in the ‘down time’ that Cindy deeply connected to several of the ladies who were so moved by her messages that they later were able to share private tears together. It was lovely to see God’s hand of healing being brought to the ladies of our church through Cindy’s powerful words and gentle spirit. Several attendees have continued to comment on how great she was months after the event. Cindy will be a great addition to your event/retreat too."

Andrea Sellers, Director Women’s Ministry, Redeemer Lutheran Church, Austin, TX

5.0
2015-03-04T15:23:46+00:00

Andrea Sellers, Director Women’s Ministry, Redeemer Lutheran Church, Austin, TX

"Cindy came to Texas and lead three sessions during our overnight Fall Women’s Retreat. Each Biblically based session was well thought out and touched each of us as she dove into finding balance in our unbalanced world. She made sure to tailor the message to our audience of multi-generational women in all stages and phases of life. However, it was in the ‘down time’ that Cindy deeply connected to several of the ladies who were so moved by her messages that they later were able to share private tears together. It was lovely to see God’s hand of healing being brought to the ladies of our church through Cindy’s powerful words and gentle spirit. Several attendees have continued to comment on how great she was months after the event. Cindy will be a great addition to your event/retreat too."
5.0
5
Hey friend —
 
Join my email newsletter list and receive these FREE A to Z Scripture Cards, along with a printable envelope.  Woo Hoo!
 
Sweet blessings to you!

You have successfully subscribed! Check your email for instruction on how to get your free downloads!