My name is Melissa Hipskind. I became a princess in the summer of 1985. I was visiting my uncle who was a preacher at a small missionary baptist church in Arkansas. I heard the Lord speaking to my heart and I answered His call that night with my mom and my uncle right there beside me. I remember the relief that I felt. It still brings tears to my eyes. I had been in church my whole life but it wasn’t until that night did I realize that Jesus was thinking of me when He hung on that cross. He died for me. And that wasn’t the end of the story. He rose from the grave 3 days later. He conquered death and now sits at the right hand of the Father waiting for the go ahead to come back and take me home. Jesus is pretty awesome. Who else could be born of a virgin, live a sinless life and do it all for people who still reject him today? Only Jesus. He is the One who makes me a princess. He has adopted me into the family of God. My King. My Jesus.

The Princess Project has been a work in progress for quite some time now. I think that throughout my life, I have been trying to live a life different from everyone around me. I always felt out of place in high school because I didn’t drink or go out with everyone that came along. I was picky and…different.

I can remember laying in my bed at night when I was in high school praying for the one that I would one day marry. I didn’t know who it would be but I did know that God was going to have to find someone extraordinary to fit with me. For many months, I prayed for him.

Then, in August of 1993, God brought him to me. Jason Hipskind. Wow! Was he something! We started dating in September of 1993 and by October/November, I knew that he was the one. We were married in May of 1995. It has been a roller coaster ride every since. We have lived in Michigan, Indiana, Florida, back to Indiana and then back to Florida. What fun, what fun!

We were blessed with an awesome little man, Austin, in December of 2001. My dad passed away in March of 2002. In September of 2002, we found out another little person was on the way. We learned we were having a little girl in December 2002 right before Christmas. God could not have planned that any better. She is what got us through that first Christmas without Daddy. In May 2003, our “party waiting to happen,” Rachel, made her first debut.

All along this path of joy and tears, I knew in my heart that God was growing something way beyond myself. We were a different family. Even as a child, I was treated with respect and a sense of being special. This has been my way of life. Not that I was (or am) better than anyone else, but that I have something in me that makes me different. I have Christ.

It wasn’t until I was at work one day in February of 2012 that it dawned on me that not everyone grew up like me. A co-worker of mine asked me for advice. She came to me because she recognized I was different and could offer something that no one else could. It made me realize that we have a whole generation of women who have grown up physically with little or no spiritual and emotional growth. Life is too short to live your life any other way than the way of a princess.

So I invite you to walk with me through this journey of realizing how God intends for us to float along through life as a princess.

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