24 June 2015

Stay the path!

For full outfit look - check out my Instagram and Facebook.
Wearing - Zara (currently retailing in stores and online)

I've been soaking into some great teachings over the past weeks and I thought to just quickly share some of them on the blog. 
  1. Pastor Sophia Barrett of !Audacious church preached a message on : "Never been this way before." : what are you allowing to come before your eyes and into your heart that distances you from the presence of God? 
  2. & then I turned to an old favourite, Bishop T.D Jakes who preached on the message : "The instinct to shift." - a great listen!
  3. Last but not least, one of my current favourites, Pastor Brian Houston of Hillsong Church sharing on a message I've already shared on the blog : Calling over Comfort - a message I absolutely love and just had to hear all over again. Do have a listen.

I've also had music I've been endlessly playing including the 'we will not be shaken' - Bethel Music album, I encourage you to have a listen, the lyrics will invariably become your lifeline (literally).
All links are clickable (click on title) and I hope you will find these resources useful as they each bring a different and unique message.
 Commit to the path
Don't fear the road
& don't draw back from it
Stay the path! - Bobbie Houston 
(Romans 5 verse 4)
Be blessed and thanks for stopping by.

15 June 2015

Bling Tea Party 2015

At my church, !Audacious, we love a good party and we sure know how to throw one.
Friday gone (12 June) was our annual ladies Bling Tea Party and the theme was SEASIDE and so the beach was brought to us (literally)
To create the vibe, the lounge and foyers were specially decorated with beach umbrellas, towels, chairs, blankets, straw mats and all things seaside and with just over 500 ladies, the sold out party was packed and ready to kick off. 
In the main church, the tables were set to a standard with the cutest sand buckets, paper pinwheels, pink straws and monochromic tumblers and ice cream cups.

Altogether it was a great night to see into the summer with girlfriends, catching up as well as making new friends. With tonnes of entertainment lined up and yummy eats, the night was packed full of fun and in between was a great opportunity to visit the stalls that lavished with goodies. 
So grateful for all the men that lovingly served the ladies so well catering to every need in the room and for the vision and the hearts our leaders carry. Some of the inspirational stories that were briefly shared on the night were so uplifting for people in different walks of life.
It is such a privilege to be in a good church with good fun ("fun" others would seek elsewhere).
I always say, find a good church and you will find a happy place (click here for a recap).
For a day is His courts is better than a thousand elsewhere, Psalms 84 verse 10. 
 I encourage you to join us for these and many other events that we have at my church. If you may recall, last year in October I shared on the blog my first ever Bling Conference experience (if you need a recap click here ) and this is happening again this year on the 16th-17th of October. Our host, Pastor Sophia Barrett and guest Pastor, Sheryl Brady will be bringing special teachings under the theme Unashamed and it would be great if you could join us.
Thank you for passing by.
Stay blessed.


6 June 2015

Interview : Lily-Jo

Lily-Jo is a pop soul singer songwriter from Manchester, UK. She comes from three generations of musicians and grew up singing in church. After studying Performing Arts at college she went on to perform backing vocals alongside the likes of Damon Albarn, Nenah Cherry, De La Soul, Roots Manuva, and Shaun Ryder. 2014 saw Lily-Jo transition to the front of the stage as she released her self-titled debut mini EP with a gig at Glastonbury Festival and a whole range of national and local press coverage including BBC, UCB, and Premier. Lily-Jo has a passion to inspire hope within people and writes songs that she hopes will create positive vibes. 
It is truly a privilege and an honour to have her join us here on our site.
Brand new EP launch is almost here. Tell us what that means for you.
It's so amazing to finally have my very own EP! I can't tell you how many times I've tried in the past to make a project like this happen and it's never seemed to work out. There were a lot of shut doors, yet this has been so easy and straightforward to complete. That's what happens when you work with pro's! I was signed late last year to independent Manchester record label LIGHT and they've really driven the project forward. The team have really got behind me and worked really hard.
I am personally looking forward to your launch party happening on Tuesday the 9th of June here in Manchester, any other dates we need to keep our eyes peeled out for?
I am doing an EP launch party in London too at The Bedford, Balham with Premier Radio! Really looking forward to that. I'm playing a few of the festivals too. My website (here) has all the details of upcoming shows and appearances.
You have released two EP's so far in your career, any reason why that is so, any chance of a full album in the near future?
The first mini EP that I released was completely self funded and so three tracks was really all I could afford. It costs a lot of money working with producers and musicians and because it was my first record I almost needed to check it was viable and that people liked my music before investing thousands into something that wasn't going to fly. Off the back of that mini EP I got signed so it was well and truly worth doing. In this industry you really have to invest a lot of time and money for little return. Music is a very expensive hobby until it begins to pay off. The label were keen to put five tracks out and see how I went down with crowds before investing into an album. Hopefully an album will come.
Is music what you have always wanted to do?
Music is what I always wanted to do! I love music! I always wanted to be a performer. When I was 16-18 I did a GNVQ in Performing arts at college and from there I toured with a pop band called Nu Image. Those days were really fun! I never thought I'd have my own solo project necessarily but this is the way it's all turned out and I'm really happy.
Pop soul singer songwriter, where does your motivation or inspiration come from?
My inspiration comes from the people in my world. My family, my friends. I also find that my work as a counsellor is really significant as it helps me to see and feel the world through numerous peoples lives and experiences. Bring me back from my New EP is a song that has most definitely been inspired by the many people I see who suffer from depression, anxiety, self harm, loss. I really hope that my music can help to bring healing & freedom to people just like my role as a counsellor does.
What does a day-in-the-life of Lily Jo look like and how do you manage to balance everything with your walk with God?
I find that I have to be super organised in order to fit everything into each day. Each day I am managing a home with a husband, two kids, and a dog, a solo career, and counsellor job. God is very much in the centre and a part of everything I do. 
 I think having a balance and an abundance of patience are real keys that help! I also have amazing support from family who live close by, without them there is absolutely no way I could do what I do. Social media is also a great tool that I use a lot which can be done from home. I try and eat well and exercise well in order to keep healthy enough to maintain the busyness.
    Live shows and radio, how do you overcome the nerves, if any?
Nerves are a pain! I do get nervous. I find smiling helps! I find talking to myself positively in the mirror helps (I try do this when no one is around! I say things like 'you can do this!' 'you've got this!' etc.
 Lastly, what would your advice be to those like yourself trying to start a career in music? 
You got to always be ready for any opportunity that might come up. It's all about good preparation, always be on top of your game. Rehearse as often as possible, keep as healthy as possible by following a really great diet, research people you love and find out how they got where they got. I like to film myself and watch it back or perform in the mirror. It's painful to watch or listen back but that way you can see your flaws and make them better. Always ask people you trust for some good critical honest feedback. Again, painful but helpful!!!!  
 Lily-Jo's brand new EP is out on iTunes Sunday 7th of June. To purchases tickets to her launch party (Manchester and London) click here. Lily-Jo is also available on (clickable links) :
 Facebook , Twitter , Instagram , You Tube , Sound Cloud , Google , Pinterest , Tumbler.
Thank you for joining us as we shared another "Hear Their Story" on the blog.
Stay inspired.
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