Hi! I’m Marla, and I am so glad you stopped in! Here’s a little bit about me:
I am a born and raised California girl with deep love for Jesus, music, and all things fried, smothered, and sweet (courtesy of my southern roots). My life growing up revolved around church, family, and food, and often those three were intertwined. My love for music led me to pursue my dream to be a professional singer, a dream that I have had for as long as I can remember. In fact, one of my earliest memories is leading a song in my uncle’s church at the age of 3 – I was so small that my mom had to put me on a bench so the congregation could see who was leading! I started my own jazz band and was the lead singer of a blues band, and I felt like things were moving in the direction I wanted to go…but God had other plans. I knew I should be singing, but in clubs and at festivals and events was jut not where I was supposed to be. I was supposed to be back where it all started – in church. I was already on the worship team, and over time I was asked to take a leadership role and staff position, and I happily served at my church for several years as the worship director.
During this time, God began to move in my heart that I needed to take better care of myself. I had struggled for decades with food, diet, and exercise, mainly because I wanted it all: great hair and skin, a thin body, and all the foods I could eat. Though I knew what the “right’ thing to do was, eat less and move more, I was hardly ever motivated by anything other than external circumstances (ie lose weight and fit into that dress for this event). And that kind of motivation doesn’t last, definitely not long enough to make the necessary life changes to actually live a healthier lifestyle. So for years I dieted, exercised, lost weight, only to gain weight when I stopped dieting and exercising and then I’d start that cycle all over again…sound familiar? Well, when I finally realized that I needed a deeper why to improve my health – not my diet, not my weight, but my health – that’s when things began to change.
When I realized that eating better caused me to feel better in my 40’s than in my 20’s and 30’s, I was motivated to learn more about the connection to diet, nutrition, and disease. What I learned caused this junk food, processed food, carb eating mama to make some major changes, and I began to share with everyone I knew. It was especially important to me to reach out to Christians, as we have an even deeper call to live our lives as examples to others. Yet, as a subgroup of the US population, our health statistics are just as bad, if not worse, than the general population. And it absolutely broke my heart to hear story after story of people in our church losing family members to diseases or in a battle for their lives. How can we do the work of Jesus – reach the lost, share the gospel, care for our neighbors – if we are sick and tired and fighting disease??? I know that God’s plan is for us to have a full and wonderful life (John 10:10), and we have to do our part to take better care of ourselves. My heart is that you will join me in this journey to better health and wellness as we honor God with what we eat and how we live.