blog, feature, Girlz in Action

More with Marjorie Jackson

IMG_0848.JPG

Three-time young author Marjorie Jackson recently released The Devoted Life, a devotional journal that she both wrote and illustrated. Hopefully, you’ve had the chance to read her interview in the Winter 2019 issue of Girlz 4 Christ Magazine. We had a few more questions to ask Marjorie, so here’s a little more insight into her life:

Q: Many of our readers want to know more about the process of becoming an author. Tell us about your experience.

My experience of becoming an author and landing a publishing deal is such an only-God kind of story that I can’t really explain much of how it actually happened. The Lord literally opened doors and put me in contact with the right people in ways that I could not have done on my own. I give Him full credit for this opportunity, and I am so, so grateful.

I have always loved creative writing (note the distinction—I can’t stand technical, research writing!). The cliché “practice makes perfect” holds true, and while my writing is far from perfect, I’ve grown up journaling, writing creative short stories, little devotional blurbs, and imagining ways to share God’s Word in an engaging, simplified manner to people my age. It’s been a passion of mine for a while. That would be my best advice: find those passions that God has given you and then do something about them. Use your talents to get behind whatever message God is putting on your heart. I don’t know what that looks like in your life, but in mine, that has looked like using my love of written, verbal, and visual communication to share God’s Word with my peers—let God get all the glory in that. A surrendered “yes” to the Lord’s plans for your life will often lead you towards places and opportunities you’d never imagine!

IMG_0871.JPG

Q: You seem to have such a positive outlook on life. Your Instagram is full of you smiling in just about any situation! Why?

While I am a firm believer that social media is not a great gauge of knowing what someone’s life is actually like (it is, after all, just a highlight reel), I would attribute the positivity and joy in my life to the fact that there is always hope. Even when life throws unexpected disappointments or challenges our way, as it often does, we have innumerable blessings to count as we reflect on who Christ is, the people He has strategically positioned in our lives, and the favor He has resting upon us. One of my favorite passages of Scripture to cling to is Psalm 16. As the psalm talks about, I want my confidence and any good in my life to be rooted in God—anything or anyone else is too shaky and fickle to put full trust in. Also, I fill my life with a lot of laughter and surround myself with a lot of fun, spontaneous, positive people. Life is too short to be down for too long. 🙂

Winter 2019 G4C.jpg

Read more in Girlz 4 Christ Magazine. Click here to snag a free subscription!

blog, feature

What’s Your Goal?

We all have goals. They’re a major driving factor that gets us through life. And here at Girlz 4 Christ, we not only want you to have goals, we want you to ACCOMPLISH them!

Have you ever wanted to do any of the following?

  • Read the Bible cover to cover.
  • Plan a trip to another continent.
  • Become a writer.
  • Get a straight-A report card.
  • Earn extra money.
  • Or anything that takes motivation and hard work?

If so, you’ve come to the right place! We’re excited to announce the theme for our Winter 2017/18 magazine issue: Going for the Goals!

We want you to help us design this issue so it can best help you reach your goals. Where is your stumbling block? Is it difficult to figure out what your goals really are? Is the day-to-day grind too much for you? Let us know what your goals are and how we can help you.

Girlz with Goalz

If you want to get a head start on your goals, we have the perfect eBook for you. Girlz with Goalz, our step-by-step workbook, can bring you from formulating your dreams to becoming a success! To celebrate our upcoming issue, we are giving this book away to everyone who makes any size of donation to the Girlz 4 Christ ministry. Just click here to safely give through PayPal, and we will send your downloadable Girlz with Goalz eBook to your email account.

You can also contribute to our GoFundMe fundraiser for a free eBook if you prefer.

PS: If your goal is to become a writer, we have an exciting way for you to do that! You can become a published writer by contributing an article to our “Going for the Goals” issue. E-mail G4Csubmissions@gmail.com for more information or to send your work in. (If you are a photographer or illustrator, you can contribute your work, too!)

blog, feature, Fun 4 Girlz

Hitting the Breaks

Earlier this year, I came up with an idea I thought would revolutionize Christian television production. Along the same vein of The Office and Parks and Recreation, we needed to shine a light on the world of ministry through a mockumentary of those front-line workers. I created characters, ministry jobs, and early versions of a script. Unfortunately, while writing is my forte, I do not have an in with anyone working in Hollywood.

Little did I know that, around the same time, a new mockumentary-style Christian series was in the works. I admit it might even be better than my show idea. Hitting the Breaks premiered last month. I watched it on Pure Flix and am hyped to tell you about it.

Hitting the Breaks is the first original sitcom series from Pure Flix. We would like to invite you to watch this series for FREE by signing up for a free trial of Pure Flix’ streaming service. To celebrate this comedy, we wrote this review comedy-style as well.

The Premise

Lightning McQueen… I mean, Randy Wilcox’s car

In case you forget why this mostly-normal Christian family ended up in an anything-but-normal Colorado Rockies town, just listen to the theme song. The title sequence begins with the opening sequence of Cars 3. (That’s also the same scene as the final race of the first Cars movie, but I digress…) Without giving away too much of the setup of the show (or the Pixar Cars franchise), there’s an accident on the racetrack. This forces driver Randy into a midlife crisis of early retirement and moving his family cross-country to his recently inherited hotel, which is where we first meet them in the pilot episode.

Serenity Inn from Hitting the Breaks
Quaint, quiet, and no cell phone tower within miles to disrupt the scenic view!

The Wilcox family walks into The Serenity Inn, their new home in Colorado. Oh no! What happened to the Wi-fi and cell service? I guess it lacks those features to make what otherwise looks like a just-built hotel set seem old and dilapidated. They never get those services, so I guess they won’t be able to read this review. Or watch their own show.

When it comes to the topic of finances, this modern-day Petticoat Junction is mysterious . Why did Randy’s father die and leave his estate conveniently at the same time that Randy also flirted with death and needed a place to move to? Why is Randy concerned about money when he has free housing and presumably a professional athlete’s savings account? How can a hotel that never has a paying guest afford to keep on a maid? (Although this does explain why she never does any work- there’s no one to clean up after!) How can Randy quickly get hooked up with an endorsement deal when he wants several thousand dollars, but can’t drop a hundred bucks to replace a falling-apart floor rug that everyone complains about? And the most mysterious of all: why are Christian films notoriously low-budget, but Hitting the Breaks is actually a good show?

Speaking of Christianity, this is an original series created by and available exclusively through the Christian entertainment company, Pure Flix. But don’t expect the characters to awkwardly pause the story line to give their testimony. Instead you’ll see the Wilcox family and some of their friends living out their life with Christ through Bible studies, church events, reading, and prayer. For them, Christianity isn’t a separate part of their lives that they focus on for two minutes but ignore the remainder of the episode. It’s how they live their whole lives. That’s a good takeaway for all of us.

Wilcox Family from Hitting the Breaks Pilot
Accurate depiction of how kids feel when they have to move to the middle of nowhere.

But although there are mysteries and faith themes, Hitting the Breaks is a comedy. You’ll be reminded of that every four seconds when the laugh track goes off. Sometimes it gets so cheesy that you’ll want to grab tortilla chips and make some nachos. The characters even acknowledge this a handful of times while breaking the fourth wall.

The Characters

Is it Brother White? Is it Holy Man Undercover? No! It’s a racing star you’ve never heard of!

Randy Wilcox is played by that ever-present actor in nearly every Christian movie, David A.R. White. Instead of his typical portrayal of a pastor or an Amish man, David branches out in this show as a retired race car driver. The word “retired” might be a bit harsh, since he’s only middle-aged with daughters still in school. But what can you do if you have a family full of women who convince you that your line of work might be dangerous after your last race ended in smoke and shambles?

Coincidentally, I was also in a car crash shortly before Hitting the Breaks premiered. (I’m not a race car driver; I just share the road with people who think that a red light means “keep going!”) I even got the same lingering injury as Randy: a shoulder in so much pain that I couldn’t raise my arm. But since Randy’s arm was instantly cured by falling off a roof, I am definitely jumping off a building now. If anything goes wrong, I’ll just send my hospital bill to the production company. (Not everything you see on TV is meant to be impressionable, kids!)

Charlie Wilcox Hitting the Breaks
I think she’s the only person in this whole TV show that has any idea what’s going on.

Charlie Wilcox is Randy’s wife. Actress Andrea Logan White is also the real-life wife of David A.R. White. In Christian film world, that means it’s okay for the couple to share a bed unlike the sitcom couples of the 50s, and kiss each other without pulling Kirk Cameron’s stand-in stunt from Fireproof. Yay for realism!

Delancey Wilcox Hitting the Breaks
While watching Hitting the Breaks, try to get a screenshot of her without a sarcastic look. I dare you.

Delancey Wilcox is the oldest daughter of Randy and Charlie. Since she’s a teen, the writers gave her typical teen traits like being obsessed with boys and shampoo. Wait, shampoo? Is that a legit obsession? I started working on this teen magazine (that you should subscribe to) as I was aging out of my own teen years. All this time I guess I forgot to include a much-desired magazine section dedicated to shampoo. If you’re a teen girl with a shampoo obsession,  please leave a comment at the end of this post. I need your help with an upcoming article.

Darcy Wilcox Hitting the Breaks
She may be a preteen, but her IQ is higher than the rest of the town’s combined.

Darcy Wilcox is basically a female version of Brick Heck from ABC’s The Middle. Book brainiac, youngest child, remembers everything, socially awkward… you get the picture. I almost expected her to repeat words in a whisper. Maybe they’re saving that for season two.

Bernie and Sky
Sheriff Bernie and non-cranky-vegan Sky appear to be best friends. Not sure what they have in common.

Other Characters abound in this Rocky Mountain town. A fan favorite is Sky, a vegan-restaurant-owning/ motorcycle-riding/ friends-with-everyone twentysomething who knows the rest of the townsfolk are unusual without realizing that she’s a different kind of offbeat as well. The bumbling cop Bernie makes Barney Fife look like a SWAT Team agent. Then there are two old guys who continually wear bunny costumes. It’s weird how quickly you get used to that.

Tim Tebow in Hitting the Breaks
Tim Tebow makes his appearance. I wonder how many people watched the entire series just to get to this point?

Let’s not forget the special guest stars! There’s Alyson Stoner, and Morgan Fairchild, and Carrot Top, and IS THAT TIM TEBOW? LET’S FREAK OUT LIKE EVERY CHARACTER DID IN THE SEASON FINALE!

The Recommendation

Wilcox Family Hitting the Breaks
Your new favorite TV family. Do they have room for one more? I’ll see if I can make a cameo in the next season.

Joking aside for a moment, you probably know that there are fewer and fewer sitcoms airing that the whole family can enjoy. Two of the three family-friendly shows I alluded to above (The Andy Griffith Show and Petticoat Junction, which also has episodes available to stream on Pure Flix) were first filmed in black and white. The other mention, The Middle, is in its final season as television networks turn to edgier shows with more shock value. I’m glad that Pure Flix is stepping up to fill this widening gap. We need more shows that are funny, entertaining, and hold to God-honoring, family-friendly values.

Although Hitting the Breaks is only available on Pure Flix, we have a special deal for you. If you click here (or on any other link in this post) you will get a free month of streaming on Pure FlixHitting the Breaks has ten episodes, so you can easily watch the entire first season during your free trial, even if you’re not a binge-watcher.

Question: What kinds of things do you enjoy in a sitcom? Also, do you have a favorite kind of shampoo? I really want to know!

Don’t forget to check out our movie reviews for Princess Cut and I’m Not Ashamed, as well as snag a free Girlz 4 Christ Magazine subscription!

Reviewed by Jessica Lippe. All photos are from Hitting the Breaks/ Pure Flix. This article utilizes affiliate links. All opinions belong to the author.

 

blog, Fashionable Girlz, feature, Girlz in Action

Winter JAMmin’ with Sadie Robertson

Maybe you’ve seen her when you tuned into some episodes of Duck Dynasty. Maybe you were appealed by her fashion lines with Roma Boots, Wild Blue, and Sherri Hill. Maybe you watched I’m Not Ashamed or God’s Not Dead 2. Maybe you read one of her “Live Original” books. No matter how you found out about Sadie Robertson, now you can see her live at Winter Jam 2017. Sadie called up Girlz 4 Christ’s editor Jessica Lippe before she started preparing for a Winter Jam show that night in Jacksonville, Florida.

Sadie Robertson in God’s Not Dead 2

G4C: What do you speak about on the Winter Jam tour?

Sadie: This year at Winter Jam, I’m bringing a modern-day twist to David and Goliath story. Nowadays we need the message of the challenge. I think it’s great for me as a 19-year-old speaking to a lot of teens. It’s good to be in that situation that I feel serves God. I’m excited about doing that.
G4C: How do you prioritize time with God in your busy schedule? 
Sadie: Well, God IS my busy schedule. I feel like I would not have this schedule without God. There’s no rhyme or reason as to why I should be able to do this or how I got this opportunity besides it being God. So, I think with that, everything has to be done in His name. Everything has to be done in prayer. Everything has to be brought to Him. It’s just been great because I don’t think anything can get too busy for Him.

G4C: Do you see yourself continuing as a speaker, or are there other career prospects you’re interested in? 
Sadie: I would love to continue as a speaker. That’s my passion and that’s where I feel like God is really leading me right now as the best way that I could glorify His kingdom. I hope to continue on in that. But if God opens a different door and says, “hey, I need you here”, then of course I would have to follow because I’ve got all my trust in Him. So I guess we’ll see, but I do love speaking!


G4C: Who’s the most original person on tour with you?
Sadie: Probably Britt Nicole. She is awesome. She’s just as powerful backstage as she is onstage, and I really respect her for that.

Britt Nicole is joining Sadie Robertson at Winter Jam!

Sadie Robertson shared much more, including her feelings about the end of the Duck Dynasty TV show, her New Year’s resolutions, and her favorite Easter tradition. You can read it all in the Spring 2017 issue of Girlz 4 Christ. Click here to get a free subscription that includes this upcoming issue! 

Sadie Robertson acting alongside Masey McLain in the movie I’m Not Ashamed

In the mean time, you can page through our Summer 2016 issue when we interviewed Sadie’s brother and sister-in-law, John Luke and Mary Kate Robertson. (While asking Sadie questions, we found out that she and John Luke both have the same favorite episode of Duck Dynasty!) And of course, you can see Sadie Robertson at a Winter Jam event near you!

Sadie Robertson modeling Roma Boots Photo by Meshali Mitchell

Written and interviewed by Jessica Lippe

blog, feature

Girlz 4 Christ Magazine: Winter 2016/17 Sneak Peek!

We’re only one week away from the official start of winter, which means we’re only one week away from the release of the Winter 2016/17 issue of Girlz 4 Christ Magazine!

Here are a few things you can expect in this jam-packed issue:

-Learn 66 ways you can read the 66 books of the Bible this year!

-Find out about The Penny Story and how you can get one of these cool “worthy” bracelets (featured on the cover).

-Meet our friends across the pond! One 18-year-old shares her experience living on the Isle of Wight in England, and we review a book about an Englishman walking the Camino in Spain.

-Read an article written by a fashion designer for the stars!

-Of course we can’t forget about Christmas! The “Christmas Crafty Corner” is pages filled with fun craft and recipe ideas to help you celebrate the birth of our Savior, Jesus Christ.

You can read all this and more starting December 21st. BUT, you have to be subscribed to receive this issue. Click here to sign up for a free subscription to Girlz 4 Christ Magazine!

blog, feature, Fun 4 Girlz, Girlz in Action

How to Write for Magazines

So you wanna be a writer? I did too.

 

I grew up wanting to be a writer. When I was seventeen, I found writing guidelines for a magazine I enjoyed reading, as well as an article about how the magazine business works. I followed the guidelines, wrote an article, sent it in… and got rejected! But I didn’t give up. I expanded my reach, writing more articles for more publications. Several months later, I finally got to see my name in print. I was a writer!

I still freelance write for many publications to this day. Now that I am an editor, I am contacted by many teens who are following the same path I did at their age. Since I’ve seen both sides of the magazine industry, as both a writer and an editor, I’ve learned a lot over the past several years. I wanted to encourage these young people who are eager to write and get published, but also produce a professional magazine. If you follow these seven steps, you’ll be well on your way to providing editors with content they want to publish, regardless of how old you are when you decided “I want to be a writer!”

Step 1: Find Some Magazines to Write For
Make a list of magazines that focus on topics you’d be interested in writing about. You want to have several options, and at least some of them should be smaller publications. You can’t expect to have your article accepted into a major national publication, especially on your first try. You may need to do a web search to discover more magazines that you might have a writing interest in.

Get familiar with each publication on your list. Every publication has a unique style and voice that they would like their writers to have. Getting a description of the magazine’s style is not enough; you must read the magazines to get a true feel for their voice.

Many magazines have a sample issue found online. These can be helpful for getting a basic idea of the type of writing they use. It’s best to get a better understanding by reading different sections of the magazine in multiple issues. If you cannot buy the magazines, go to the library to see if they have any copies available. If they’re not at your library, check out a neighboring library. Although you may not be able to check out the magazines, anyone can stay in the library and read them for free. It’s even a common practice for some writers to thumb through an issue inside a bookstore! You could also try borrowing magazines from friends and family. The more recent issues you read, the better. Some magazines change their style over the years, so you want to stay up-to-date.


Step 2: Get Writing Guidelines
Before you get to step two, you should have checked out the websites and social media for all the magazines you want to write for, in an effort to familiarize yourself. Go back to their websites and look around for their writing guidelines. Sometimes, it’s in a tab in the page menu. Often, it’s located in the footer. It may even be hidden in the “About” or “Contact” page. There are times when the guidelines are not readily available online, but they provide instructions on how to obtain them. And there are times when they cannot be found at all. If that’s the case, look at all the contact options, and pick the e-mail address that you think has the best chance of getting a response in the appropriate manner. (The graphic designer won’t know what to tell you regarding writing. On the other hand, an editor-in-chief may lose your e-mail in the hundreds they receive every day, but a department editor can get back to you more easily.)

Some magazines offer a 10-page PDF that explains every last detail of what to write, down to want font to use and whether or not to use an Oxford comma. Other publications make it short and sweet, with nothing more than a word count and where to send the piece. Regardless, read these guidelines- multiple times! While some magazines can be forgiving about certain minor infractions, you don’t want to lose your opportunity to be published over something that could have easily been avoided.


Step 3: Craft Your Article
Once you know what’s expected from you as a writer, it’s time to be a writer and write! If you’re reading this in the first place, you probably enjoy writing because you already know the basics. So we won’t go over grammar and other rules here. However, if you do need some extra assistance with this, take a course or ask for help from a teacher or fellow writer.

Finish your article, and then check it against the writing guidelines. Is your piece within the proper word range? Is it broken down into subsections with appropriate headers? If the magazine requested a certain kind of formatting, did you do that? Do they need a bio line about you?

Also check your basic writing rules to make sure the piece reads clean and professionally. You may have a great point to make, but no one will ever be able to read it if the editor has a hard time finding it among misspellings and errors. For newcomers to the magazine industry, the title “editor” can be misleading. It is not their job to proofread your work; it’s yours. They are more focused on determining whether a piece is suitable for their publication, and possibly adding or cutting parts to better fit.

One major no-no that you don’t want your writing to get involved in is plagiarism. Never copy and paste words from the internet! Most websites have a hidden indicator that you probably never noticed, but an editor will be able to tell with this indicator that it has been copied. If you must use a direct quote, make it brief and include information on where you found it. Even with a research paper, the majority of the content should still be your original work.


Step 4: Submit 
If your article is crafted and final-drafted, get ready to send! In the writing guidelines, you may have found deadlines. Many magazines don’t have set deadlines since they continue to publish their magazine year-round and year after year. However, if your article is about current events or has a seasonal slant, or even if it adheres to a magazine issue’s theme, you’ll want to make sure you meet the intended deadline, and a few days early if possible. If there is no established deadline for seasonal material, make sure at least three months in advance.

Check back with the writing guidelines to see if the magazine wants a completed article or a query. A query generally means that they don’t want you to send more content than they have time to manage. Instead, you need to write them a convincing query letter that explains why your article would be ideal for their publication. You’ll only need to send the completed article if they write back asking for it.

If a query is not requested, then send the complete manuscript. But check the guidelines to see if they want you to e-mail the article as an attachment or in the body of the text. Some publications have submission forms on their website. There are even a few magazines still out there that only want to read what you send through snail mail!


Step 5: Practice Patience
After you hit that “send” button, you may hear back from the editor after a few minutes. But more than likely it will be several weeks, or maybe even months, before you hear anything back. Resist the urge to follow up on a daily basis. If the writing guidelines state how long it normally takes for the editors to get back to you, and it’s been longer than that, it may be okay to write a short note asking for the status. But be aware that in most cases, the only thing you’ll get back is a rejection notice. If they really want to use an article, they’ll take the initiative.

Know that getting a rejection letter is not a bad thing. It doesn’t mean you’re a bad writer. In fact, in a lot of cases, the reason for rejection is because of something completely out of your control. They may have written everything in-house, or they may have had a lot of freelance writers who wrote for that particular need. You could even be rejected because the magazine is going out of business! Sure, there may be something you need to change about your article, but don’t automatically assume that it’s bad writing or that you shouldn’t be a writer. Even the best writers have been rejected. Think of it this way: you can only get a rejection letter if you’re a writer!

Whether you receive a rejection letter, or you’re still waiting on the verdict of your article, don’t spend this waiting time idly! Remember that list of publications you’d be interested in writing for? Look up writing guidelines for another one of those and keep yourself busy with a new piece. Realize that if you want to write full-time, you’ll probably be expected to create a new piece every work day. Professionals don’t wait around to hear back about their piece before they write another, and neither should you. You could even submit to the same publication if they have a new theme or deadline coming up.

Step 6: Follow Rules and Follow Up
It can be nerve-wracking to open up a response to your writing. There are several options of what could be inside: they want to use it, they don’t want to use it, or they need certain criteria to be met if they’re going to use it. Again, don’t get discouraged if they can’t use your piece at this time. But don’t respond back to them asking for reasons why they won’t use it, or if they know of a publication that will better appreciate it. Although you may occasionally get pointers, asking for them makes you come across as whiny and unprofessional. Editors are not your personal writing tutors. Just accept the fact that they won’t accept it and move on. Down the line, you may be able to work with them once you have more experience under your belt!

Sometimes you will get an acceptance on spec. This is especially common if you send a query instead of a finished piece, although you may also get this if they request certain edits from you. Writing on spec just means that they aren’t guaranteeing publication at this point. They’ll come to that decision later on. If they did request that you change some things, do so and return your piece in a timely manner. Don’t try to defend that your piece is perfect as-is; the editor knows what’s best for their publication. Virtually all work gets edited anyways, but in this case you just have the opportunity to provide some extra input!

If you get an acceptance notice, there will probably be some paperwork or some sort of agreement that follows. If you’re getting paid for this, you’ll have to provide personal information so that they can keep their bookkeeping and taxes accurate.


Step 7: See Your Name in Print
Congratulations! If you follow the above six steps, you’re a magazine writer! It will just be a bonus the day you get a copy of a magazine with your name inside.

That day may not come so quickly, though. If you write for a website publication, you may see fast results. But traditional media can take longer- sometimes more than a year. You already practiced patience, and now’s a time to use this skill in practice!

Sometimes, articles end up fitting better in a different issue, so it may not be published in the month you were expecting. When it does go into print, share it with your friends and family! They’ll get to read your work, and you’ll keep a good relationship with the magazine so that you can write for them again!

Now that you have a better idea of how the freelance writing process works, put it into action! How about writing an article for Girlz 4 Christ Magazine? (Start step 1 by signing up for a free subscription!)

If you’d like more personalized training for publication writing with a real magazine editor, consider taking Girlz 4 Christ’s course, “Writing for Publication“. This one-day class can accommodate groups of any size, and every participant will leave with a ready-to-submit article!

blog, feature

Girlz 4 Christ Magazine’s Winter Theme: People & Faces

Girlz 4 Christ, the magazine for Christian girls around the world, is excited to announce the theme for their upcoming winter issue: People & Faces. “Since our start nearly six years ago, our goal has always been to provide a global community for Christian girls” says editor Jessica Lippe. “Now this magazine is being read by thousands of girls in at least 35 countries, including several areas where Christianity is restricted or illegal. With this issue, we want to focus less on how widespread we are and more on the people in all those locations. It’s not about the places; it’s about the faces.”

A unique aspect about the winter issue is that the People & Faces theme wasn’t announced to the article writers ahead of time. The staff agrees that what happened could only be orchestrated by God. Most of the submissions were related to the readers getting to know and celebrating their family in Christ, both here at home and around the world. From family traditions for the Christmas and New Year season, to bonus interviews with girls who put their faith into action, this issue of Girlz 4 Christ will bless all the people (and faces) who read it.

Jessica Lippe, editor of Girlz 4 Christ Magazine, is available for interviews and presentations regarding the magazine ministry or the topic “People & Faces”. For more information, contact Girlz4Christ@yahoo.com.

Girlz 4 Christ Magazine’s People & Faces releases this winter on December 21st, 2016. Anyone can get a free subscription by visiting Girlz4Christ.org.

blog, feature, Girlz in Action

Exclusive Interview with I’m Not Ashamed Movie Star

Today, the motion picture I’m Not Ashamed is premiering in theaters. To celebrate, enjoy this interview of the movie’s star, Masey McLain. In this film, Masey portrays Rachel Joy Scott, the first victim at Columbine High School. Check out more about this movie, including more Q&A, fashion tips from the wardrobe team, and an exclusive interview with Rachel Scott’s real-life mom in the Fall 2016 issue of Girlz 4 Christ. Click here to receive a free subscription!

Sadie and Bella Robertson acting with Masey McLain

 

 
Give us a brief testimony. How do you say, “I’m Not Ashamed” in your life?
In my own personal life, I’ve realized that in anything I do, I want to do under the umbrella of living for the glory of God. I want to intimately know Him, hear His voice above all others, and follow it. He is the only one that has satisfied my soul and has given me hope and true life, and because of that I know He’s worth following. When you decide to live for Jesus, there will be so many lures, distractions, and temptations that will try to throw off your focus and dull your purpose. I’ve definitely experienced that—we all will. There will be persecution, too. Most of us may never experience it physically, but we definitely will in other ways. So in all of that, for me to say “I’m Not Ashamed,” means for me to remember that in whatever circumstance I’m in, that I am a child of God. Because of the cross I have hope, freedom, and true life that the things of this world can’t compare to or take away. Ephesians 2:6 says, “and God raised us up with Christ and seated us with him in the heavenly realms in Christ Jesus.” As a child of God, I am already SEATED in heaven next to Jesus. I’m already victorious, so what do I have to fear in this life? Because of that, I want to live for Him, and I want others to see the light that He has put in me and be drawn to Him because of it.
What was the most challenging movie scene for you?
The most challenging, but most rewarding scene for me was the shooting scene I had no idea what to expect going in that day to film. My heart was heavy and everyone on the set knew it was going to be a tough day. I remember it being SO hot outside and we had to film this scene almost all day to get all the shots and every angle and point of view needed. It was emotionally draining and exhausting in every way possible, but it was also one of the most special moments of my entire life. I remember the Lord flooding my mind with worship songs, and the story of Stephen (the first martyr in the Bible) was constantly going through my head. I felt like the Lord truly gave me a glimpse of how proud He was of Rachel in that moment and all I felt was Him singing over me and even smiling. It’s hard to explain everything the Lord allowed me to experience that day, but I hope I never forget it. I remember after it was over, I just completely collapsed and had a meltdown. I had no idea that day was going to be so hard yet so absolutely beautiful and powerful.

Masey McLain and Sadie Robertson in the church worship scene

 


Was it different to play someone who actually lived as opposed to a fictional character?
Yes! There is so much power in telling a true story. I got to rely on her journals, her mom, and what people that knew Rachel said about her. The more I read her thoughts and feelings that she wrote down, the more I realized how much I could relate to her and even how similar we were in a lot of ways.

How are you and Rachel similar? How are you different?
Rachel’s real life best friend, Mark Bodiford (who is portrayed as Nathan in the movie) got to screen the movie to give a review of what he thought about it before it was released. I was in awe when I read that he wrote how similar Rachel and I were—that our laughs were the same, our quirks, and our voice. He said that there were times that he didn’t feel like he was watching a movie, but rather reliving a memory.  I never met Rachel, got to hear her voice, or see how she laughed or figure out her quirks. Only God could have orchestrated that. That still leaves me in awe! I also think we are similar in the way of having that desire to want to live with a purpose and make an impact on the world. That’s definitely something I found that lives in my heart and I could relate to. There are probably a lot of ways we are different, but one that sticks out to me is that Rachel always wanted a boyfriend throughout high school and that’s something I never really cared about in high school.
 
What was your real life high school experience like?
My high school experience was really great at times, but also really hard. I played basketball and did plays throughout most of high school, and I remember that time with my team and cast being so much fun and the highlight of high school for me. However, there was a time when I felt extremely lonely, especially towards the end of high school. I homeschooled my senior year, and it was one of the hardest, loneliest, but most needed years of my life. I remember thinking that I had a choice- I could either sit in my own self-pity and waste the whole year doing things my way and trying to cope with feeling lonely, or I could seek God with everything I had and trust that there was a purpose to that year. I finally chose to trust Him. That year was so crucial for me. It was a year of renovation and preparation in my heart. Looking back, I see how He knew exactly what He was doing and that I desperately needed that time of it being just me and him. He became my best friend that year.
How did you grow in your faith while acting for I’m Not Ashamed?
I’ve never experienced the level of dependency and intimacy that I had with the Lord like I did while filming. It was a really special time in my own walk with Him. This story is so special and powerful, and to be honest, I was so scared the months leading up to filming, because I didn’t want to mess it up! But I knew that God had called me to it, and I had to trust that. It was amazing to experience that dependency on Him. He knew Rachel’s heart more than anyone, so He’s the one I looked to the most to give me insight, even creatively. I walked away confident that whatever the Lord calls you to do, He will give you everything you need to do it.


Why do you think it’s important to tell the story of an event that occurred 17 years ago?
A story like Rachel’s needs to be told—no matter how long ago it happened. Rachel’s life is such a powerful reminder to us of how to truly love others the way Jesus did, and what it means to pick up our cross and follow Him, no matter what the cost. We don’t know if we will have tomorrow, but we do have whatever time we have been given to live with purpose, and Rachel’s story reminds us of that.
 
What do you like to do off the set?

I love to go for runs and listen to music, read, have movie nights, play my guitar, play games, sing in the car, and hang out with the people I love!

 
What’s the biggest reason that teen girls should see this movie?

It will remind you of your true purpose. It’s so easy to get caught up in with the things of the world—the drama, gossip, popularity, boys, “competition,” and the temptations that we all experience. Satan uses those things to lure us away from living out our true purpose, and we don’t even realize he’s doing it most of the time. I hope that after seeing this movie, you are encouraged by Rachel’s life and that you set in your heart to live boldly for an audience of one—the only one who is worth following and living unashamedly living for. 

blog, feature, Fun 4 Girlz

Final Preview: Girlz 4 Christ Summer 2016

The Summer 2016 issue of Girlz 4 Christ is coming Monday! And we’ve jam-packed it with so much to check out!
Meet two of our international readers, from Italy and Australia.

 Get the inside scoop on new book releases, including Life Just Got Real by Sadie Robertson.

 Get some tips on how to deal with those awkward moments, including some of the G4C staff’s most embarrassing stories!

 Enter to win a copy of Kimberly Rae’s book, Abnormal Results.

 Learn the good of going to see a counselor and what to expect with your first appointment.

 Meet Lauren Scruggs Kennedy, a Christian woman who isn’t letting a missing eye or arm stop her from moving up in the world of fashion journalism!

 Find out more about Duck Dynasty’s youngest married couple with our exclusive interview with John Luke and Mary Kate Robertson!

 Find out if you should watch the newest documentary on Netflix, Poverty, Inc.

But you can only get all this and more when you subscribe to Girlz 4 Christ Magazine. Subscriptions are 100% free, so there shouldn’t be anything stopping you from clicking here and signing up right now!

blog, feature

Sneak Peeks at Summer 2016

If you follow us on Facebook, you may have noticed how we announced some exciting new developments in our Summer 2016 issue. In case you missed it, here’s a quick recap.

On our cover, you’ll see John Luke and Mary Kate Robertson, the newlywed college students that you’ve probably seen on Duck Dynasty. John Luke just released a new book called Young & Beardless, so we’ve interviewed them about the book, their lives, and their inspirations. (You’ll even discover who taught John Luke how to shave… after all, in a family of bearded men, you have to wonder…)

John Luke’s sister, Sadie Robertson, will also make an appearance in this upcoming issue! She also wrote a new book that will be released next month. Her first work of fiction is called Life Just Got Real. We may have to start #RobertsonSiblingRivalry to find out which of their books comes out on top.

Today, we’d like to give you a few more sneak peeks…
spring dress // lauren scruggs kennedy

  • In 2011, Lauren Scruggs suffered a traumatizing accident involving an airplane propeller that left her with one eye and one hand. In our next issue, we’re interviewing her to find out how she survived and went on to become a famous fashion journalist.
  • In addition to tips from Lauren Scruggs Kennedy, we’ll get even more style advice from our regular fashion and beauty team. You’ll even get a special coupon to shop for natural beauty products!
  • You’ll get to read the G4C team’s most embarrassing moments. 
  • When you donate to charity, have you ever considered what good your money will do? We’ve got an inside look for you.
  • Meet G4C readers from all around the world!
  • As usual, your copy of Girlz 4 Christ Magazine will allow you to read devotionals and other articles about living a God-honoring life!
You don’t want to miss out on all this and more. Click here to get a free subscription to Girlz 4 Christ Magazine!