This month at Miss Millennia Magazine, we’re talking about religion. This month we delve into the world of spirituality and what it means to certain people. In our vast world there are so many religions that people take solace in for peace of mind and daily motivation. This month we are honored to introduce Sandy Sandmeyer as our cover girl for the month of April. Sandy began working with a local municipality over 20 years ago and after spending many years assisting indigent clients in obtaining their disability benefits through the Social Security Administration, she was made the Lead Case Manager 2 over the Disability Advocacy and Family Housing Assistance Programs. She’s a Certified Public Manager. Sandy has been attending church all her life but only recently began receiving proper teaching that has opened her to a new world. She began attending Countryside Christian center in 2006 and since then has incorporated her religion into her day to day life. Sandy is a wonderful example of a modern day mother and wife who stays true to her faith.
At what age did you get involved with your religion and what was your first impression of it?
I have always attended a Christian church for as long as I can remember. I don’t even remembering having an impression of Christianity. I was born again when I was nine years old and that experience changed my passive belief into a more active one. It wasn’t until about seven years ago that I started receiving real good teaching and started to take my beliefs more seriously.
Do you have any role models or inspirations that help you in your conviction?
My very first role models were my parents, of course. They were born again when I was young with the guidance of a Christian music group called The New Directions. I received direction under them when I was nine and eventually travelled with them during the summers when I was 14, 15, and 16 years old. I had the opportunity to travel on the eastern seacoast of the United States and went to Haiti twice. We recorded an album one summer, sang in prisons, on street corners, churches, and at conventions.
Currently, I’m receiving so much teaching and discipleship where my family and I attend church. My husband and I are in our fourth year of theology school and we’re hoping to go into some type of ministry when we retire. Now my role models are the pastors and people I attend church with. I get really good Biblical teaching and we “do life” together.
How do you integrate your spirituality into your daily life?
To be very honest, I need improvement in this area. I pray daily and throughout the day. That’s very important to me. Where I fail is actually reading the Bible, which is necessary if I hope to learn more about Jesus and about my Christian walk. The Bible is the most important way that we can get to know God more intimately. I attend church on Sunday and go to class on Wednesdays, where I get more in-depth teaching about the life God intends for us all to live.
I think that the biggest way that I integrate Christianity into my life is by just living in the way that God calls for all people to live: To love God and to love others. It’s really simple, but we make it very complicated by added all sorts of man-made rules.
What do you think are the greatest benefits of integrating spirituality into your personal life?
I think that integrating Christianity into my personal life brings me a great deal of peace. Because I know that God has my best interest in mind and He wants only the best for me. I don’t worry about things that I don’t have control over because of that.
It’s helped me think about others more than myself. Not to say that I’m not important, but to think outside of myself. For example, I saw something the other day from the Time-Warp Wife that said, “Modesty is more than a fashion statement, it’s a daily decision to dress like the child of God you are.” Think about what you might say about someone who dresses in a provocative way or in a dress that’s too short or in something that you don’t find acceptable. I want to dress in a way that honors God and doesn’t cause someone to think of me in any way other than as a child of God.
What advice would you give a woman trying to delve into a more religious and spiritual lifestyle?
Religion is about rules. It’s man’s way of getting to God. However, God looks at the heart. He wants a relationship with us. I would say to that woman that she needs to find a good Bible-believing church. Personally, I attend a non-denominational church. Many of the denominational churches has some many rules in the name of God. Then I would tell her to start reading the Bible from the New Testament. If you want to learn more about God, then a good place to start would be to learn about His son, Jesus. The last thing I would say would be to start praying to God. Praying is just like talking. God can handle anything that you say. It’s not like He doesn’t already know it.
Any further changes in your life that someone says you “must do” can come later. God wants us just as we are. He can handle the transformation.
What has been your biggest struggle in achieving your goals? How are you overcoming it?
I am my own biggest enemy when it comes to achieving my goals. Many times I sabotage my plans with doubt and insecurity. I’ve been getting better as I get older and learn to just go for things that I’m trying to achieve. For example, I’ve always wanted to do more singing. I sang a lot growing up and had the opportunity to have 3 years of voice lessons in college. When I joined the choir at church, it took me a year to sing for our choir pastor so that I could be considered for solos. I knew I could do it, but I was afraid of failing or being rejected.
What are some of your favorite hobbies?
I love music. I listen to mostly Christian radio from the time I wake up at 5:30 AM until I get home from work at 5 PM as well as in the evenings while I’m on the computer. I’m a voracious reader and I carry a book or my Kindle with me all of the time. I read about 40 books a year. I love going on road trips. My husband and I are going on a road trip for our 25th anniversary this year; traveling from San Diego, California to Portland, Oregon over three weeks. One of the stops on our trip is going to be Sea Glass Beach, because I collect sea glass and I’m looking to add a piece or two to my collection. I blog and started taking it seriously in the last year. I have two blogs; one where I review products and books and the other is personal and I talk about relationships and faith. I horde eye shadow and have a huge stash of it.
What inspires you?
There’s so much about life that inspires me. I’m inspired by the things that people do, being in nature, good music…I can’t think of just one thing in particular. Seeing people doing good and right things for other people, children, or animals is inspiring. On our road trips, I’m so inspired by being in nature and its many forms. I remember our trip to Nevada and some of the surrounding states. Every time we turned a corner or crested a hill, there were such amazing vistas. I literally cried because it was so beautiful. And music, I can listen to some compositions and they just amaze me. The play of the instruments and the sounds is like ear candy.
What would you write about for the blog?
I’ve been thinking about writing about forgiveness and self-acceptance. It’s something that I’ve been coming to grips with lately. I know I’m not the only one hurt in school from thoughtless words from classmates. It really helps to shape who we grow up to be. Those words scar.
Do you feel like you can inspire women in their 20′s and 30′s? If so how would you go about doing this?
I think that my experiences when I was a woman in my 20’s and 30’s can help someone of that age work through those same things. The best testimony is life experience and while there are some things that I can’t relate to, there are some women who will appreciate the life I’ve had and the decisions that I made that went against the grain of society.
Who does Lady Lennia represent to you?
I think Lady Lennia represents strong women who a confident and leaders among women.
Why would you make a great Lady Lennia for the Religion/Spirituality edition?
I admit that I’m not the perfect woman; I am flawed in so many ways. But, saying that, I know that I’m trying to be the best Christian that I can be. Christianity is being, pardon the phrase, demonized in the media lately, and I want to show women how a Christian woman’s like should be. Not perfect, but working towards an excellent life that’s pleasing to my Savior.
Sandy’s P.O.V.: http://sandyspov.wordpress.com
Personal Google+: https://plus.google.com/+SandySandmeyer/
Uncompromising G+: https://plus.google.com/u/0/b/113520710235890855498/113520710235890855498
Sandy’s P.O.V. G+: https://plus.google.com/u/0/b/100246234779481641748/100246234779481641748/