Thursday, December 23, 2010


Welcome to another Lets Chat Friday. Today my guest is Shawn Boreta and we would like to wish you  all a Merry Christmas. Since Friday is Christmas Eve I am posting early so everyone can be sure to catch our chat. It is one you do not want to miss.  Shawn is one of those ladies the Lord has placed in my life. She is one I look to every morning for inspiration. Shawn is one who has helped to inspire the theme of  my newest addition to blogging entitled  Simply Robin. What better way is there to begin the year than by  giving thanks 365 days a year?  I find myself blessed  to be surrounded by Christian women who impact my life daily with challenging me to live more abundantly for Christ. Through every struggle there is hope. Shawn has a smile that can turn a frown upside down. She has this joy that is contagious and I love that about her. Life is not perfect, but she chooses to see the cup half full. She chooses to let go of fear and embrace faith. Shawn is not only a passionate writer, but an amazing artist. You can find photos of her magnificent pieces here throughout our interview.  I hope this interview inspires you today. I pray you are blessed and find yourself asking these same questions of your own life. Challenge yourself today to be the best you can. To be the woman or man God has called you to be. Sit back. Grab you a cup of hot chocolate and enjoy our chat.

(Robin) Shawn, tell me a little about yourself.

(Shawn) I love people. I love the interaction, the warmth and the fellowship, as well as the challenge of people. I started my work life waiting on tables, serving people – and today I love people, being with, and relating to them, serving them.

It is very interesting how things have changed through the years, and how I would have written my story so differently years ago. And yet today, as I ponder “about Shawn”, my mind wanders back to many of the same descriptions of me I have always used; wife, mother, friend and someone who loves change… and as a child, I would have said a “gymnast,” plain and simple. I prayed over the last several days about writing this, and I asked God for clarity to give an accurate portrayal.

“The walk of righteousness or walking circumspectly is effortless, if we live in the Spirit and WALK IN THE SPIRIT.” ~Galatians 5:16-25

Many years ago, someone said to me, “we have just dumped a 1000 piece puzzle in your lap, and over time, you will put this puzzle together – color will be added, you will start to see the straight edges, images will become clearer with time, and eventually you will start to see what is being created.” That is what my life is.

“We know that all things work together for the good of those who love God—those whom he has called according to his plan." ~Romans 8:28

God says, “Here are millions of puzzle pieces laid out before you. Some pieces are colored, some white, some torn, some textured, and some are ready to go into place, others ready to be removed. But in the end, all the pieces will be set - two choices; the first is a puzzle that never completes, the second is one with perfectly laid pieces, all in their proper places.”

“For I know the plans I have for you," declares the LORD, "plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.” ~Jeremiah 29:11

So, to tell you about me, I would have to start with my creator, because I am in direct relationship to who He is, and what He has done in my life. I am purposed! Indirect, by my calculations, but then I would have landed somewhere unknown because I am directionally challenged – however, very DIRECT, according to God – and, as I share my life, my testimony and my journey with others, I am reminded that the start was that of an out of sync, frightened, unsure, arrogant and insecure girl. And, today, I stand a mighty woman of God. Sure of my faith. Sure of my walk, and knowingly following His lead through the road, desert, paradise or whatever else He deems necessary – with open eyes, ears, heart, mind and objective.

(Robin) Since you have walked with the Lord, has there been a time you struggled in your faith? If so, would you please share?
(Shawn) On March 26th, 1965, I was delivered physically into this world – and on October 30th, 2002, I accepted the greatest gift ever given, and was born into the family of God. Since then there have been many storms; and through my trials, I am strengthened and through my strengthening, I become closer to who God intended me to be. Like many of us, my Christian walk began with scars of my past, thoughts that were flawed and beliefs that hindered. But through the years, God delivered message upon message until I finally listened. He is so faithful, even though I had been so resistant.

I believe my struggle is the same as many others, it is not realizing who I am in Christ, and what that truly means. It wasn’t until God gave me the gift of writing daily about gratitude that the “light” went on, and His love was revealed. As a new Christian, saved from a background full of guilt, works and relying on the approval of others, it took some time to understand grace.

The true breakthrough came when God told me to be grateful for what I have through a friend’s posting, I felt a nudge to take a challenge of giving thanks during the month of November in 2009 – this is how God revealed himself and performed open-heart surgery. Today there is restoration, renewal and healing. Through the exercise of giving thanks daily, I have grown to love the idea of thanksgiving and gratitude in my life. I have learned to love myself more; I can now laugh at my mistakes, cherish my enemies enjoy the struggles and know that there is truly light, not just at the “end of the tunnel”, but through the entire journey, if I just look for it.

Today, I no longer struggle with who I am, for I truly know that I am a child of God, daughter of the King. I can do anything because I have God. If I am tired or weary, all I have to do is call to Him, and He’s got me. My life has a plan and purpose – I am important and significant, because He thought of me in the beginning of time, and has loved me that long.

I was very uncomfortable praying, would struggle, even when I was alone.

Now I pray all the time, and love praying with others – Colossians 1:10-14.

I could never be quiet, always had to have something on or someone with me.

Now I love being still and alone with God.

I loved God

Now I am passionate about God, and KNOW who I am with Him in my life.

For years I have been unhappy with how I looked.

Now I accept who I am as He perfects me.

I shared my faith once in awhile, but only when comfortable.

Now I am very comfortable sharing my testimony.

I complained all the time; I was afraid, doubtful and felt it was everyone else’s time to “do great things” or “win”.

Now I am so grateful for where I am and how I got here – Joshua 1:9.

I worried all the time; and made my circumstances worse.

Now I know how to give everything to God.

I felt like the world was against me – so many things went wrong.
Now I am living for God’s purpose and God’s plan.

I was plagued with depression, illness and exhaustion – couldn’t understand “why me”

Now I am encouraged every day that everything I experience is to make me strong – because there are great things for me to accomplish.

(Robin) Has there been an "aha" moment in your life that has changed your perspective?
(Shawn) The power of words, especially the ones we speak to our mind, hold so much power, the power to change our circumstances, our health, our finances, our relationships, begins with how we think.

“For we know, brothers loved by God, that he has chosen you, because our gospel came to you not simply with words, but also with power, with the Holy Spirit and with deep conviction.” ~1 Thessalonians 1:4-5

The “aha” moments are so many. In fact, He just keeps them coming. I have heard the saying before that “through my misery, I found my ministry”. For me that is true, but I will also say “that through my need to be encouraged, I found the ministry of encouragement, and that is how the Lord encourages me every day”. On November 3rd, 2009 I took the call from the Lord to listen and give thanks. On May 26th, 2010, I heard him tell me that others needed to hear what I wanted so desperately to hear, so He gave me Wonderfully Made; a Face book group that is pure edification and encouragement delivered by God’s children, through His word or the words given to them. It was that morning, on that day, that I understood the Psalm 139:14 verse, that I had read a thousand times, and today is embedded deep within my soul: “I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made; your works are wonderful, I know that full well.”

(Robin)  Do you have a favorite Bible story, verse, song or hymn that gives encouragement when struggles come?
(Shawn) I knelt to pray, with the list of people and things to pray for, I overwhelmingly broke down. It was like all the emotions of the past 40 years, the ones I thought I had dealt with, were right there on the surface. The picture in my mind was Hannah, when she was in the temple and Eli asked if she had been drinking.

I have referred to Hannah so much in this past year, not because I could relate to her pain of not having a child, but her desires to come transparently and naked emotionally before God. To lay all the hurts of her being, and the entirety of the desires of her heart before His throne. And, in my words, I begged before God on many occasions that His will would be my heart’s desire – to remove what is not of Him, and replace what is.

“Hannah was praying in her heart, and her lips were moving but her voice was not heard. Eli thought she was drunk.” 1 Samuel 1:13

When I first became a Christian, I heard and read Proverbs 31, and when I am overwhelmed, I run to that passage and for some reason do not feel so busy after reading it, but I’m completely blessed by the reading.

I am grateful for this last year, where I have experienced God’s mighty power through His word, His people and revelations in me. I am in love with my God and His word, my prayer every day is that someone can find the same love.

(Robin) What is one thing you look for in a close friend and what is one quality you hope others see in you?
(Shawn) “May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace as you trust in him, so that you may overflow with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit." ~Romans 15:13

Friendship is a gift, and I know that God gives us relationships to cherish. I look for honesty, loyalty and grace. I used to train people, and my favorite disclaimer was, “we will be spending a lot of time together; most of the time you will like me, but there will be times when I will not make you happy; know this, your best interest is my concern, so, if I do something you don’t like, tell me; don’t harbor anything. Be upfront and honest, that’s all I ask – and I will do the same.” I am human; I will disappoint people, and they will disappoint me, and knowing that is the key.

There is harmony in friendship, with a walk in the same accord, and understanding of where that person has been and is going, as well as the ability to build and maintain rapport. There is a compliment in friendship that God fully orchestrates when they have the right focus – and our gifts are even better when we live cooperatively with others within the body.

“He who walks with the wise grows wise, but a companion of fools suffers harm.” ~Proverbs 16:20 (NIV)

“Faithful are the wounds of a friend, but the kisses of an enemy are lavish and deceitful." ~Proverbs 27:6 (Amplified)

“Just as lotions and fragrance give sensual delight, a sweet friendship refreshes the soul.” ~Proverbs 27:9 (The Message)

I heard in a teaching once, and I have always known deep in my soul my entire life, “friendship is the core of our being.”

“Jonathan said to David, ‘Go in peace, for we have sworn friendship with each other in the name of the LORD, saying, ‘The LORD is witness between you and me, and between your descendants and my descendants forever.’’” ~1 Samuel 20:42

I have come to realize that the friends I have in my life right now are the friends who push me to become better, they want what is best for me and I am learning more than ever in my life. I love who God has created me to be – I love what He has for me – and I love who I get to grow with. I may not always know what is next, but He is surrounding me with the greatest people, to continue preparing me for greatness.

(Robin) What are a few of your favorite books you have in your collection you would share with a friend?
(Shawn) I have read so many business or self-help books over the years. There are many that I could list, but quite honestly, it is God’s word that enthralls me; God’s word that challenges me and inspires me. May I just say, “I highly recommend it for everyone.”

(Robin) When life seems to go crazy, what is one thing you do to bring comfort and peace?
(Shawn) Jeremiah 33:3 says, “Call to me and I will answer you and tell you great and unsearchable things you do not know.”

I love music – the soft strum of a guitar or the roll of fingers on a piano. And, I am grateful for music. What a magnificent gift that God gave us! Some of my earliest memories are of me singing as a child. It seemed there was always music playing. There is a comfort in music. So, when the world gets crazy, I run to music.

Every morning I look forward to listening to worship music, and every weekend, we have music playing all the time around the house.

I look forward to the perfect music of heaven, and every once in awhile, when it is quiet from the noise of the world and His music is playing in the background, I get a glimpse, a sense of how awesome that will be.

(Robin) What is one thing about yourself you admire?
(Shawn) Just one? That too, has changed over the years. It is my ability to change and adapt; it is loving the possibilities of tomorrow as I love and live today. Today, I admire the God visible in my life. And, this is not said with any pride or conceit. It is a fact that before God, there was much doubt in my life, many moments of melancholy, feeling unworthy, guilty – and as I become closer to my creator, I am becoming a woman who desires the things of the world much less; and greatly desires a life that reflects God greatly. I know that my life is rich – and my wealth is in the mind; a powerful change from where I was just a short time ago.
“Every God-begotten person conquers the world's ways. The conquering power that brings the world to its knees is our faith. The person who wins out over the world's ways is simply the one who believes Jesus is the Son of God.” ~1 John 5:4-6

(Robin) What are a few of the things you love surrounding you?
(Shawn) I love to spend time with my husband, my daughter and my friends, who are truly my family. I love to create, so having a room in my house that is just me is so important. This is the room that warms me when I am cold, inspires me when I am uninspired; and where I can always go to be with God.

(Robin) What are your deepest passions?
(Shawn) My greatest desire is to see others realize how special they are, and for them to realize that they were created by a mighty God with a specific purpose. My desire is to get to know people where they are and watch the Lord change their life, and mine too, because of it.

(Robin) What is the best advice ever given to you?
(Shawn) Get to know God’s promises and know that He loves me greater than I will ever comprehend or could ever imagine. Be flexible and begin to love change. The greatest change has been the changes of my mind.

My mind is being used in ways that I never thought possible. God is using others to help do His work, imagine that. I am grateful that so much wisdom is passed on, out of love – this love runs deep in the true body of Christ, and I am grateful that after so long, I understand that I have a place that is uniquely designed by my creator. My uniqueness, talents and bubbly self is specifically qualified because it was blessed before I was even born.

Albert Einstein said, "You can never solve a problem with the same kind of thinking that created the problem in the first place”.

“We demolish arguments and every pretension that sets itself up against the knowledge of God, and we take captive every thought to make it obedient to Christ." ~Corinthians 10:5

(Robin) In the legacy you leave, what is one thing you hope out shines before all others?
(Shawn) When the Lord takes me home, or we all go up together, I want to leave behind reminders of my life and the God that I strongly stand for. My legacy is the work God has done in me – whether it be my art, my writing or just the memory of how I lived for those who God is working on in my life; those who do not yet know Him. I want the words that God gave me to filter through and marinade is someone else’s mind as well, or for them to take a look at the colors and verses in my art and say, “Yes, Lord, yes”.

(Robin) What are you currently working on?
(Shawn) I am currently resting in the Lord. For the first time in my life, I am at rest with where I am going. My entire life I have worked toward something – I have chosen a path, and took off toward it. There is a peace that is available to everyone, and that peace eluded me for most of my life. When my adult life started, I was very young; just 18, on my own, and living away from the people and things I had known my entire life; independent, ambitious and tenacious are words that I would have used for my younger years. I have always worked on me. So, in this time of rest, I am working on being who God designed me to be. I used to scoff and laugh at people when they would identify themselves as the “daughter of the King” or “child of God”, not understanding what that meant.

I am growing in the word, by sharing His word with others.

(Robin) How do you define success?
(Shawn) It is truly my desire to be God’s ambassador. And through the years, months, weeks, days and down to each hour of my journey, I want what I reflect to be attractive. I want so much to glorify God in my work and have it completely evident in all areas of my life. And, I pray that my personal mission statement is apparent to those around me – exemplify God as I fulfill the obligations of my family and helping others reach their dreams for their families.

Success will be, when I hear my master say, “Well done”.

Oh, how I long to hear my master say,“…Well done, good and faithful servant! You have been faithful with a few things; I will put you in charge of many things. Come and share your master's happiness!” ~Matthew 25:21

Shawn, I think all I can say after that interview is, "Amen." What a blessing you are. I am so thankful you stopped in to share with us. So many nuggets to take away and ponder on. This is one I will have to come back to and read again on those days I am finding myself in need of encouragement. Blessings to you sweet friend. Again, Merry Christmas to all my readers. I know Shawn would love to hear from you. Leave your thoughts, prayers and questions for Shawn. Check out her links below to see just all she is involved in. 

Giving Thanks Daily on Face Book 
Giving Thanks Daily on Blogger
Wonderfully Made
Equip His People Ephesians 4:11-13
My Testimony
Cherish My Enemies
Beauty From Ashes
Ezine Articles


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