Greetings and Joy in Abundance!

Ever wonder why some people seem to be floating through life and others stumble?

I wonder this, and seek to find ways to float instead of stumble. Maybe you would like to join me in this search.

Seeking a closer relationship with God seems to allow my life to float along a little easier.

Phillipians 4:5-6 tells us to reveal our gentleness outwardly, that God is near and that we should not be anxious about anything, but through prayer and petition, we should thankfully approach the Lord with our concerns.

As a high energy person, my anxiety can run high. I am constantly seeking ways to leave my concerns at the foot of the cross.

Random? Probably not.


Friday, December 24, 2010

Merry Christmas

Merry Christmas dear friends. 
I thought about this today while I was at work.  Such great spirit in all my co-workers and in everyone I came into contact with.
Don't you wish that everyone could feel the spirit of Christmas cheer all year long? 
Well, we can!  It is possible!  that is what I have been working on for years and years! 
Jesus lives within us - therefore we have this spirit of Christmas cheer all throughout the year.  Just remember to call upon our Lord, ask for help in remembering and finding that good Christmas spirit whenever you have need.

It can be done - you can set the example for the year starting on Christmas Eve and flowing through the whole year.  God bless you and keep you strong throughout the coming year. 

I wish you the most Merry celebration of the gift of a Savior given to us by our Creator and Father.  What a most wonderful time of the year - when everyone will allow us to share our faith and our source of hope.  Let's do our best to remember to be a good example to others by sharing the source of our hope...Merry Christmas!  All year long!  Woot!

Friday, December 10, 2010

Positively Positive...

Yes, today is a day of remembrance.  Why?  Because a friend called this morning who was good friends with my mother.  Our frienship as a trio was indeed an interesting one.  My dear friend was respected by my mother, and respected my mother.  We have this connection together - the memory of my mother.  So, when we speak of anything, generally, she comes into the conversation.

As it did this morning.  Yes, choices are ours to make.  Any situation we are in requires a choice to be made.  We were talking about aging parents and forgetfullness and difficulties with this and that.  Well, the truth is, my friend said she was blessed to be able to be near her mother regardless.  She is blessed by her mother no matter what happened in the past or the childhood memories that are not so wonderful.  I shared that when I was young, my mother told me that we are so fortunate that we can choose which things we remember.  She made it seem like a very special gift.  We can choose to remember the good and throw away the bad - this way, when we forgive someone for something that happened, it is as if it never really did.  It wipes the slate clean if you forget about it and never bring it back up - but only if you truly forgive them.  My family was full of love and fun.  When feelings were hurt, we tried to forgive and forget.  We are not close in proximity, but we are close in heart.  We have little in common in our lives, but we have much in common in our rooted hearts.  We are rooted in the Lord together, knowing that whatever else happens, we will see each other in heaven and be able to be at the great party of praise going on at the feet of Jesus!  Woot!

So, whether your family is at odds or loving life, remember that it is your choice and yours alone that makes your special time special.  You can remember the day with all the hickups and difficulties and hurt feelings and crying because someone didn't get their way, or you can remember the great parts - we were together, we had fun, someone was joyful or even a joke was shared.  It is all in our perspective.  Positive Perspective can change the world.  It happens one person at a time.  Try it out on the next family gathering.  Only use positive words and influence.  Try it! 

"Fix your thoughts on what is true and honorable and right.  Think about things that are pure and lovely and admirable.  Think about things that are excellent and worthy of praise."  Philippians 4:8

I knew my mother used that Bible to help bring us up, I just never understood how much she used it until I realized what I was reading in the Bible I already knew in my heart because I was living it.  Crazy, huh?

Thursday, December 9, 2010

Our Children Need Us!

I was at a luncheon today, and there were shocking figures shared regarding theliteracy rate in High School graduates.  The figures are so dismal, that only 1 in 10 of our children will graduate from College as a progression of their traditional education cycle.  There is a problem with this.

I wondered where this problem originated.  I sat in my chair at this luncheon and cried for the children who are left wondering who they are and not understaning why they make their decisions. 

I remember as a young girl the way my father helped me understand the value of the power of choice - this was done with love and a firm grip of patience.  My dad sat me in a chair in the living room (I must have been about 14 years old) and just asked me one question.  "What reason compelled you to make this choice, young lady?"  I really had no reason.  I said I had no reason.  He said that was unacceptable and that I must sit and ponder - seek to discover the real reason behind my action.  Until I understood why I made that choice, I would never be able to understand the importance of my choice. 

This was a painful lesson to learn.  It must have been hours.  This was not the only time my father had done this.  These were regular conversations. I applaud my parents for their persistence and patience.  I praise God for strengthening them during these times.  I know it wasn't easy.  My dad told me it wasn't (when I was in my 30's) and I believe him.  I look back now and I see a very wise parent and a very foolish child.  At the time, I saw a very clever child and a very irritating parent. 

Loving our children - and even loving the children around us that do not belong to us but are given to us for a moment or two to cherish - is a gift.  The gift my father received of our love and respect for him was boundless.  We may not have liked his way of correcting or appreciated his philosophical discussions as much as we could have, but he found a way to give us the good discipline he saw our Father God give to His children, and emulated it.

I know I've written before about choice - and my parents were big on our personal choice - but there can never be enough emphasis placed on the truth that the Lord has given us free will.  There is not one person on this earth who can force you to do anything against your will.  They may take your earthly life if you choose not to yield, but that will take you to an eternal life with Christ Jesus.  As we choose each day whom we will serve, we choose to reflect our faith.  Where is your faith rooted?  Your choices actually tell the people around you where your faith lies.  The fruits of your life are a direct reflection of the effort you put forth in planting the seeds you are given. 

Seems easy, but really it isn't.  This is why our children need us so very much.  It's easy to tell people what to do.  It's easy to tell your children what is right and wrong.  It is better (oh, and so much harder) to model the behavior you wish to see continue around you.  Oh, thank you Lord, for my parents.  They were so wonderful to even follow the bike laws when we rode our bikes around Poughkeepsie, NY.  Stop at the corner, walk your bike across.  Never, NEVER ride your bike against traffic.  Follow all the traffic laws when you are riding in the street.  If you are riding on the sidewalk, follow the rules for walking on the sidewalk...that's when you MUST walk your bike across the street.  Follow the flow of traffic.  Do not go anyway even if there is no traffic if you are in the street and the light is red.

Wow - see, it works.  I still remember all those things, because my mom and dad didn't just say, "be careful" but they took me on a ride with them and showed me why it was important.  These 15 minute bike rides were very important.  Seemed like a little thing going biking with my mom or dad on Saturday morning, but looking back now, the little 5 year old really got a lot out of it!

Please remind your friends how important modeling behavior is.  If we wish the next generation (or any of the current ones) to be strong and vibrant, we must help them know who they are, why they are, and whose they are.  Mentor a child today - one moment at a time.  A five minute conversation can impact a child for a lifetime.  Can you remember one to share?

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

Handling Challenge

My friend posted a question today about how we handle challenges - like the loss of job, home, family, health...and this was my answer today...
It's when the daily life comes under attack that we need to seek guidance from God. This is how we ground ourselves in the midst of sorrow, pain, loss, illness and every other thing that satan puts in the path of our quest to be righteous.... Each day, we are faced with choices, and as we look at our circumstance, we face the choice: do I complain or do I praise? I praise God for my faith - everything else I have is His blessing on my health, my job, my car, my home...let's remind ourselves to keep our priorities straight - without our faith, we are nothing. Just specks of dust that will blow away in the wind with no home to ever rest in. Eternal salvation - heaven is where I seek to rest my head. It is a choice to praise and thank instead of whine and moan. It is a choice. It is always OUR choice.

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

Walking can be a painful process

Today I was thinking about how we walk by faith, and as I was reading a commentary by J. Vernon McGee, I remembered that walking is a painful process to learn.  He reminded me that we do not inherently know how to walk.  This is a learned activity.  Not only is it a learned activity, but it is a process that is learned by trial and error.  Many times, the success of walking comes with a few bumps and bruises from falling. 

This is how I think about walking by faith.  It is trial and error.  It is painful as we grow and reach.  I understand this from personal experience in a prior time of employment.  Emotional pain dealt when we are growing spiritually can take a long time to overcome.

Yes, I suppose that this is the same as growing pains.  I think it is very similar when we begin a new job.  We must learn the new ways of the company, understand the culture, not rock the boat too much and find our rhythm within the daily responsibilities we carry.

I am looking forward to the challenge of beginning a new chapter of my work life.  Yes, it might be painful to walk from one to the other, but at the end, I will be able to run the race and see the finish line!  Putting things in order is the way that we walk - one foot in front of the other.  It is the same as we walk by faith.  Put things in order - God, Others, Ourselves.  We are able to walk successfully when we do that.  If we have things out of order, we stumble and fall more often, not understanding why in the world we are falling and bearing bumps and bruises. 

Be strong - seek God and continue to put things in order in your life so that you are making progress.  The ease of our days comes from the fruit of the Spirit.  Take time to cultivate your own spirit.  It really does make a difference.

"If we live in the Spirit, let us also walk in the Spirit." Galatians 5:25


A quiet moment of reflection