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Be You, Bravely | Featuring Stef Krach

Happy Wednesday, everyone! It's time for the Be You, Bravely series again, and today I'm featuring a dear friend and fabulous photog Stef Krach! This lovely is a sister soul of mine, and some of my favorite Seattle memories include heart-to-hearts with her over pedicures or happy hour. She is a visual storyteller with a heart of gold; check out her Instagram for further proof. I am so thankful for this woman, and I hope you enjoy getting to know her story below.

Who are you, my dear?
Hello internet! My name is Stefanie and I am a 20-something, Seattle dwelling, espresso slinging, Jesus loving gal who has a penchant for the outdoors, photography and all things lovely. I spend my days working for a local non-profit, sharing stories and asking people to partner with us to help those in greatest need. You will rarely find me at home during the weekends, as I am typically out and about exploring what the great region of the Pacific Northwest has to offer. This is due in part to a little app many of us know as Instagram. As silly as it sounds, I have seen some of the most beautiful places and become friends with some of the most genuine and incredible individuals - all thanks to an app! As a lover of people I couldn’t have asked for a better tool to connect to others as quickly, or as beautifully as I have. If you are new to a city, or even just visiting I encourage you to break out of your comfort zone and try reaching out to others. It might just lead to an adventure of a lifetime!

What does it mean to be you, bravely?
Oh goodness, now that’s a question! When I think of myself, the first word that comes to mind certainly wouldn’t be brave. As a woman who stands proud at 5 foot 9 inches tall, I have a tendency to run away when anything with over 8 legs comes my way! However, over the past few years I have learned that it does take a certain amount of risk and a dash of bravery to live your life true to who you are and who God has created you to be.

Scriptures say that we are all crafted in God’s image, that He knit us together in our mother’s womb and that the Lord even knows the number of hairs on our sometimes rather thick noggins. We have all been equipped with our very own set of traits, gifts, quirks and personalities. I think that too often we try to push down what makes us, us to be a shadow of something or someone else. I know, because for years I tried to fit the status quo. To be myself - and bravely at that - means accepting and celebrating the way God crafted me, and trying my darndest to thrive with what I have been given. It means growing in certain areas, and not being too hard on myself in others. It means tossing aside the daily lies that are so easily put on repeat, and intentionally listening to the One who saved my soul and calls me child. It’s not easy, and there have been so many times when I failed to live life as bravely as God has called me to – but there is a grace that covers my weaknesses and an understanding that life is a journey to be lived.

If you could have a heart-to-heart with younger you, what would you say?
SO many things! We would probably have the longest conversation over coffee, ever. Remember that whole standing proud at 5 foot 9 moment I just had? I would tell myself to stop slouching and to go out and enjoy all the benefits of being a little bit taller! I’d also definitely have to have a little talk about the opinions of others and the world vs. the opinions of our Heavenly Father. When you are younger, your world and what it revolves around is often so close to you that you can’t see past a few inches. I’d tell myself to go buy a telescope and get to some higher elevation!

What is encouraging you this week?
Oh man! Well I just got back from a social media conference in Portland called Socality Live. Roughly 400 individuals from all over North America, and even a few folks from across the pond, gathered for 2 days to see what would happen when you put community into action. It was awesome getting to listen to speakers talk about the Gospel, social media, influence, creativity and community. I'm more encouraged than ever at the potential we have in this present time to connect for a purpose, and to use the platforms and giftings we've been given to share the Good News!

Just for fun, what are 3 must have's?
- Coffee, and a lot of it. Preferably made with beans from Vivace or Storyville. I know, I know. I miiiight have a problem…
- My iPhone or my DSLR. I love detaching from technology, but I love taking photos and being connected too much to permanently sever the tie!
- Red Lipstick. Its my go to when I am being lazy and don’t want to wear much of anything else on my face, or it’s the finishing touch to a fun look.

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