Monday, May 29, 2017

#sistersofinfluence: Allie Danae Walker

Today I am so very excited to introduce you to my sweet friend Allie. Allie and I met in college, where we were both involved in BCM (Baptist Collegiate Ministries). We have several mutual friends and lots of fun memories (mostly at football games) together. She's such a sweetheart, and is a complete and total boss babe! Allie runs her own business and blog and has such a kind, sweet, and hospitable spirit. You'll love getting to know her!

Tell us about yourself. Who are you?

Hi y'all, I'm AllieDanae Walker. I'm a southerner through & through who runs on Jesus and caffeine. A little over 2 years ago I ventured into the world of online business and then launched my company The Social Walker Agency just over a year ago. I've been blogging personally for a few years over at Southern Grits and Graces.

How did you come to know the Lord?

I grew up in a home where Christ was the center of lives, literally and figuratively. My parents had been one of the founding families of a local Christian school and we were very active in church. I remember the night so clearly when I asked my parents to help me become a Christian and then they told me the angels were having a party in heaven (clearly from an early age, I was all about parties!) so I ran outside to look up and was so disappointed I couldn't see them and they were having a party without me. For many years my faith grew and grew, but there came a point around my sophomore / junior year of high school that my relationship with Him became such a routine. Senior year and then on into college and post college, it has been a steady growing process and getting back to the point of joy from that first night. 

What do you think it means to be a woman of influence right where you are?

My parents have always told us that you never know who is watching. Younger cousins, younger students at the school, even people older than us are always aware of our actions. I think it is important to be looking for those watching you and to see how you can step into their lives. It's look different for me over the years. I've led a college freshman Bible study, coached middle and high school cheerleading, and am now leading a small group of ladies closer to my own age. For me, it is "doing life together" - the day in and day out, the fun and the messy, the laughter and the honesty. Although I work from home most days, there are still women (and guys) I can influence through my business, my Instagram, my blog. They are platforms that the Lord has given me to glorify His name and not mine. 

We have to keep our eyes open for daily opportunities to step into the lives of others just like He did with the disciples. He went right to their fishing boats and even after He called them to be fishers of men, there were plenty of times they were all back out on the boat. As John 1:14a says "The Word [Jesus] became flesh and made His dwelling among us." He moved into their lives permanently, and that's what we're called to do - at work, on social media, at the playground with our kids (well, not mine, I don't have them yet haha!), etc. 

How does the Lord allow you to shine His light through your business?

So this is a two-part answer..

The Social Walker Agency - I try to bring my Christian values into my business. It is always important for me to be honest with my clients about deadlines and mistakes and let them know what is really going on. Honesty in business will always set you apart. I'm always looking for ways to bring the Fruits of the Spirit into my words and calls with clients. If they have something going on in their personal lives, they know I'll be praying for them even if they aren't believers, and I don't think they mind the prayers at all. I also have started a Scripture series on IG every Sunday. If I lose followers, I don't stress over it. 

Southern Grits and Graces - When I started this blog many years ago (like 5 years before it was called SGG), I wanted to be a big time fashion blogger who got sent stuff in the mail or paid to shop and post about it. I didn't really know it was a thing but it's what I wanted it to be. It seemed folks loved my fashion posts but I knew nothing about reaching out to brands or SEO to get an even bigger audience (INSTAGRAM WASN'T EVEN AROUND WHEN I STARTED BLOGGING!!!) But what I have come to learn is that I love writing online just to write. To talk to my readers about what is going on in life and what the Lord is doing in my life. That has shifted the focus of my blog and why I changed the name and hid some of the really old posts. Every now and again I might still do some "here are amazing things you need from LOFT right now!" - like these 5 new T-shirts I have currently on repeat, but for now I want to use my influence to point to Him first and foremost.

What is one thing you want the women of our generation to remember?

We need to celebrate each other and our differences because that's how the world moves forward. We all have been given different gifts, not to compete with each other but to compliment each other. We can't all be hostesses and have no food because we don't have someone who loves to cook. Or vice versa. Or singing. Gosh, you don't want me leading worship, so I'll stick to hosting folks and giving out hugs! 

What is your favorite verse or passage of Scripture?

Right now I'm sitting on Psalm 84:11 - "For the Lord God is a sun and shield; the Lord bestows favor and honor; no good thing does He withhold from those whose walk is blameless." I recently lost my Momma to a heartattack and need to be constantly reminded that He is good and He doesn't withhold good things from us if we honor Him with our lives and our influence. 

What is one truth you want others to remember and cling to?

Daniel 3:17-18 - This sort of ties in with Psalm 84:11; There will be times when things don't go as we want them to or as we think God should do them, or on our timeline (why am I still single at 27?), but we have to remember that He is God, and He is good, and He is good at being God (I think Jennie Allen said this). Shadrach, Meshach, & Abednego definitely wanted God to answer their prayers a certain way, but they knew "even if He does not" they would not turn from following after Him.

And last but not least: coffee or tea?

Coffee for sure!

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