Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Amazing Love

November is one of my favorite months of the year, because it reminds me to stop and count my blessings. God has really been so good to me that I can't imagine not taking the time to thank Him for all He has done. Unfortunately, I get busy and take the best things in life for granted.

If I listed each thing in life I am thankful for, it could take me hours. So, I will just take the time to talk about one of the best blessings God has ever given me. My husband. Not only is he my spouse, the person I am blessed to share a lifetime with, but he is most importantly my best friend. He is my encourager, my confidant, and the amazing love of my life. He knows everything about me and he loves me just the way I am. But, that is the way true love should be. When some women are looking for every opportunity to be with other people, I am content to be at home with the one I love.

The things some people dislike about him - his perfectionism, his finickiness, and his attention to detail are the very things that attracted me to him! Those are the traits that make him go above and beyond what other men would do on our anniversary, my birthday, and other special occasions. He has NEVER forgotten one of those special dates and he always makes them more memorable than I could ask. He notices every time I wear something different, or try something new and he is quick to compliment every detail about me, which is exactly why I want to please him that much more! He encourages me to better myself and stands behind me when I make a decision. He is definitely my biggest fan and does not hesitate to defend me!

He is the best father I could have ever wanted for my children. He is loving, firm and a great spiritual leader in the home. He displays the perfect example of the Heavenly Father's love by showing our children an equal amount of grace and discipline.

I am so thankful that God chose to bless me with this amazing man of God!

Saturday, September 13, 2008

20 Years Later ..................

I can't sleep! It's 3:00 a.m. and all these thoughts are rolling through my head. It's not because I am not tired-- because I am! It's not because I have so little to occupy my mind - its so full I can't keep up with all the stuff rolling around in it! So, I decided to get up and get this out. Plus, I figured it has been four months since I blogged, so very few people would read into this insight I am sharing :)

Maybe it's the fact that I can't pick up the phone and call her to tell her about something my happy-go-lucky Anna has said. Maybe it's because she can't see how handsome my sweet Simeon is becoming. Maybe there is some underlying feeling my emotional intelligence is processing that is making me think about her.Maybe I am just suffering emotionally right now and need a safe ear to share my feelings with. Maybe it's because someone reminded me that she would have loved seeing Anna and how spunky she is. Maybe it was the recent reminder from one of her friends from long ago about what a great person she was.

I don't know what it is , but the realization of how much I really miss my mother is weighing heavy on me. It has been 20 years since she lost the battle to cancer and still I miss her just as much. There are times when it isn't as difficult, but there are times that the pain seems just as real as if it were yesterday.Twenty years ago I did not let the pain out. I avoided tears and all appearances of grief. I did not want anyone to know how I felt. That was my mistake and it took years to realize that my stoic behavior was not healthy.

I know there is purpose in our pain. I know God had a plan for my life and it may not have come to fruition if she were still here. But, for some reason, I can't help but wonder what it would be like to talk to her now.

I am wondering, what lesson do I need to learn from these feelings? Is it the value of those closest to us? Is it how short time is and how precious life is? God knows. Time and time again I look back at each milestone and see what pain or emotion He used to teach me a lesson. So, for now I will wait. I will wait to see what He wants me to feel or hear. But, as I wait I will remember the good and look forward to the day when I will be able to share the life I have lived with her.

Wednesday, May 21, 2008

Sibling Rivalry

Born in the same family, living in the same home, blessed in the same manner these two little people have a lot in common. Yet they are amazingly different! These differences are easily appreciated especially during certain circumstances. But, their differences are what make these two adorable creatures clash on a pretty consistent basis. They love to stir the other's emotions and thoroughly enjoy getting the other one in trouble. Sometimes it grieves me to no end when they are unkind to one another and treat each other with disregard. I want them to be close and to be each other's ally. I know that one day it will come and I remind them just like my daddy reminded me that they need one another.

While I was contemplating this aspect of sibling rivalry, it struck me how similar God must feel when His children are unkind to one another. How His spirit must be grieved when we don't consider our brother or sister's feelings. Surely, He is watching and wishing we would be close and an ally to them. Does it hurt Him when we respond in a bitter manner to our "siblings?" If I am an earthly parent who can not stand to see my children fight, how much more does it pain our Heavenly father? Yes, it must hurt Him. Yes, He must want us to be kind and get along with one another. It is amazing how we can see life in a different light if we will just look through His eyes of love.

As I strive to instill brotherly and sisterly love in my children; I am reminded that as children of God we must also strive to realize just how important our brothers and sisters are to us. We must avoid unkind words and be true allies to one another. We need each other and our Heavenly Father will appreciate our consistent determination to avoid sibling rivalry!

Wednesday, April 30, 2008

Shhhhh! She's ????? today

I won't tell you which one she is's not me, my mother-in-law, or her best friend who is having a special birthday today!

Today I have the joy of honoring one of my most special friends on her ___th birthday! Our friendship goes back only a few years but it is one that was formed on a solid foundation.

Staci and I never called each other on a daily basis, went shopping weekly, or went out on the weekends. Instead our friendship was formed on two very important aspects - family and prayer. This friendship I treasure began as an offspring of my in-laws' and her parents' friendship. When our families would get together for special occasions that was really the only time she and I did things, other than church.

Then, our bond was really solidified when we both started attending Monday night prayer meetings. We would claim our own separate corners and spend time with our Creator. Those special times in prayer united our spirits in ways that social outings never could.

I am a family oriented person and don't always tend to be social. Staci is also a family oriented person so we have always honored each other's "space."But, that realization of the need for individualization did not effect our spiritual connection.

Staci has the uncanny ability to make me feel better about myself when I am around her. I don't worry about what I say, or don't say. I can be me! She is a strength to all of her friends and many times an amazing confidential sounding board! We may not communicate for weeks, yet I know our friendship will pick right up where it left off. She doesn't get angry if I forget one of her personal milestones or remember it to late. She challenges me to be a better person. She can touch the Throne of God when I need her to. She is an AMAZING friend!

Happy Birthday Staci!!!!

Monday, April 28, 2008

Unconditional love gives others the right to hurt us-
John Bevere

While attending Indiana Ladies Conference, Sis. Jennifer Cobb suggested the book, The Bait of Satan, as a great Bible study tool. I am always looking for new things to teach our Ladies Bible study group and was quick to jump on this one. I never read the finely printed subtitle, but just read the bold title when I bought the book. So, last week when I began diving into this new material, I looked a little further and realized the subtitle was, Living Free from the Deadly Tray of Offense. I had no idea what an amazing source of instruction I had just purchased.

I have only just begun to soak in the lessons that John Bevere teaches in this masterpiece! The book has become so vivid in so many areas that I have started highlighting many of his insightful statements. So many of us are trapped by Satan's deadly bait of offense. Offense can steal our joy, rob our peace, and cause mass destruction in our minds.

One of my favorite points he has made so far is when he talks about Joseph and how God always has a plan. Every obstacle Joseph faced just led him closer to the plan God had for his life. Knowing that nothing comes against us without the Lord's knowledge of it before it happens, nails down how we need to trust Him when we would rather be offended.

Though I have not completely finished this book, I highly recommend it. There are times when we don't even know that we are holding off God's blessings by holding on to offense!

If you stay free from offense you will stay in God's will - John Bevere

Monday, April 14, 2008

"I Don't Need Another Reason to Praise the Lord"

Years ago I heard someone sing that song and today I was reminded of how powerful those words really are.

It happened when I saw her walking through the grocery store unable to utter a single word an innocent bystander could comprehend. She looked to be about 12 or 13 but had the expression of an infant. Her inability to communicate other than cry out every few minutes did not stop her mother from conversing merrily with her. They were talking about the eggs they would use to make a cake, and all of the other ingredients needed. Her mother seemed sensitive and compassionate.

At that moment it occurred to me that the day-to-day problems many people think are so overwhelming really are not so life shattering in the grand scheme of things. Not when a precious child such as this was struggling to let her feelings be made known. I took the time to reflect upon how blessed I really have been. Both of my children are healthy and have no problem communicating or taking care of their basic needs. None of us have gone hungry. No one is in the hospital. We have a roof over our heads. We have a bed to sleep in. We have salvation, water baptism, and Heaven awaits us. I just have to say God is good! When you think life is bad - look around ......

No matter the problem I don't need another reason to praise the Lord!

Monday, April 07, 2008

This is where I've been......

After having five people ask me in less than one week when I was going to blog again, I decided that maybe it was time. Actually, I think I fell into a hole towards the end of September and I am just now climbing out. Maybe it was the cold winter that kept my brain from running. Or, could it be that from November until the end of January the busyness of everything was too much? Maybe it was the 12 hour class load I took in the fall that kept me from writing for fun. If so, then maybe that’s why I haven’t been running (Rochelle) or eating right (Becky). Regardless of the reason, my visit to Mississippi and Texas along with a couple of recent emails from my Indiana friends has reminded me of my 6 month hiatus. Actually, my visit in Texas reignited the desire to work on both my physical health and my mental health (by blogging). Thanks ladies!

I finally finished my Bachelors in Business and decided to take on one of my Graduate level classes for the spring semester. Then, after May 9th I am going to take my first summer off from school since 2004!! Hopefully, with my course load being a little lighter (despite the extensive papers due) I will start writing again, running again, and eating right. Thank goodness spring is in the air!!!!