“Beloved, if God so loved us, we ought also to love one another.”
1 John 4:11 KJV
Happy Tuesday! One of the things I’m going to work on today is loving the people that get on my nerves. Is this a pride issue? Yes!
Have you ever felt like you are minding your own businesses and it seems like someone just wants to steal your joy? Maybe they are ignoring you or smacking when they eat. It could be even worse than that. Maybe they have done you wrong, physically or emotionally. You forgive them, but just don’t want to be in their presence.
The love mentioned in 1 John 4:11 is a type of love Jesus taught, where we are to love others expecting nothing in return. That also applies to people who get on our nerves. God loves us and surrounds us with love. One way we can show our love towards God is to love others as he loves us. I’m not saying this is easy or always happens immediately. It is something we should work on daily. While you are working on loving others, love yourself.
My brethren, count it all joy when ye fall into divers temptations;
James 1:2 KJV
Happy Saturday! I’m a little late posting today, because I’ve been enjoying resting. This afternoon I plan to take a walk outside and just rest and refresh my soul. If you have had a tough week, take a few moments, hours, or maybe a day to refresh. When we take care of ourselves, we are able to help others more.
Have you ever been tempted to do or say something that you knew was wrong? On more than one occasion, I have quickly responded before thinking. Later I wondered, why did I say that! I have looked to food for comfort, knowing that our comfort is always in our sweet Lord. I have been tempted to sleep in on Sundays, and have actually followed through too many times to count. I have become angry, held my tongue, and in the presence of a few friends or family spewed angry words.
In the Message Bible, James 1:2 says “Consider it a sheer gift, friends, when tests and challenges come at you from all sides. You know that under pressure, your faith-life is forced into the open and shows its true colors. So don’t try to get out of anything prematurely. Let it do its work so you become mature and well-developed, not deficient in any way.” It’s difficult to think of trials and temptations as a joy or gift. Yet, when we are tested, we grow spiritually, emotionally and physically. It may be difficult to understand at the moment, but opportunities for growth are a blessing. Have you ever prayed for patience and found yourself needing more? That’s an example of being forced to mature as a Christian. Every day is new, and there is always something to be thankful for, especially when it’s spiritual growth.
Today, walk in the love of Christ, and smile inside and out when you experience these moments of growth. God bless you.
Let the words of my mouth and the meditation of my heart be acceptable and pleasing in Your sight, O LORD, my [firm, immovable] rock and my Redeemer.
PSALM 19:14 AMP
It’s a frozen Wednesday in Florida today. The temperature is below 27° and it has been raining. While my body is frozen, I am thankful for the cold. I have been told that cold weather helps control the populations of unwanted insects. That is what I’m counting on!
Has your mouth ever gotten you into trouble? Have you ever wanted to take back something you said? Have you ever thought your words were okay, but were taken wrong? Me too! It is so easy to get in trouble with our tongues. In fact, you can look through the Bible and find the word tongue mentioned 42 times. Our speech can bring life or bring people down. If loving our neighbor is the second most important commandment (Matthew 22.39), and it is, then how we speak to others is very important!
Equally as important is the ability to listen without interrupting. Just listen and pay attention. It is easier said and done. I heard someone say that they pause before responding. I think that is good advice, especially as I grow older. The pause gives me time to digest their words a little longer so that I can truly understand what they meant. Always remember that we never know what someone is going through at any particular time. Yesterday I saw a friend that I had not seen in several years. She was very quiet and subdued. Later in the day, I learned that one of her children had recently committed suicide. I didn’t do anything wrong when I saw her. However, had I known the situation I might would have been more caring toward her. So, this morning I ask myself, shouldn’t I be more caring to everyone all the time? It’s something to think about.
Finally, I want to remind you that texting has no tone, which often leads to misunderstandings. We have enough misunderstandings just listening to people. I heard a friend say yesterday that she was in the doctors’ office and the receptionist asked her “Gay”? She replied “I didn’t know.” The receptionist said “no, is your last name Gay?” Funny. I have seen more misunderstandings with texting and funny situations involving autocorrect than I care to admit. So, use discretion on conversations involving texting. If it is a sensitive subject, just call the person, or better yet, go see them in person.
So, today text with care, listen more, pause before speaking and bring life to others with your words. God bless you!
For he called you out of the darkness into his wonderful light. 1 Peter 2:9
Happy Monday. I missed you guys so much. We live in a rural area and the Internet has been out in our neighborhood since Friday. We still don’t have Internet service, but I came to work early this morning so I could post.
My good news is you CAN live without the Internet! It’s amazing how much time I had this weekend. This experience made me realize that digital devices suck up your time. I spent time reading, swimming, cleaning house and just resting. It was awesome! Yet, I must admit that I missed the Internet. I couldn’t work on my classes, post in my blog, couldn’t read your blogs, or keep in touch with others (well except by the old fashion landline telephone method). It’s really funny how dependent we are on the Internet. When I was a child the closest thing to a computer, anyone I knew had, was a calculator. No one had cellular telephones. In fact, my grandmother was on a party landline telephone. You could pick up her phone and hear the neighbor’s talking. It is amazing how far we have come. That brings me today’s great event – the eclipse. I was in middle school during the last eclipse. We made special devices in science class so we could view it. God is the best artist!
Are you dreading the drama this morning? Is your work world full of stress? Is Monday your least favorite day of the week? Is there someone you just don’t want to see? Are you afraid others will learn secrets from your past or worst yet, present? You are not alone. Many people get physically ill on Monday mornings. Stress has been linked to physical and mental illnesses, which can shorten your life. We all have skeletons in our closet, people who give us a hard time, and drama we have to contend with, at least a little on Monday. It’s okay. It doesn’t matter how bad things are, let God’s light shine through you. Others will see God’s work in you. As Jason Gray sings “the more broke you are, the more the light gets through!” Isn’t that great! Be happy and thankful. Shine for the Lord in all you do today.
Her mouth speaks from which fills her heart. Luke 6:45
Happy Monday! It’s a great to share something good! I worked really hard finishing three classes over the weekend. Have you ever felt like something was hanging over your head? That’s how I felt, and every day something happened. I was able to spend time with my children, grandson and husband over the weekend, which is always great. Last night I even found time to read a magazine. I sometimes feel like I should work 24/7, but rest is important, because it restores us.
Have you ever felt like someone was just driving you crazy? Does the way your neighbors behave get under your skin? Do you sometimes think you are going to lose your mind if you are around a coworker for one more minute? Has someone ever betrayed your trust and hurt you deeply? A good percentage of our aggravation every day comes from people not being what we want them to be or behaving how we would like for them to behave. God created all of us differently and each person has value in the world. Wouldn’t it be boring if we were all alike? Proverbs 11:27 says “he that diligently seeks good, seeks favor and grace.” In today’s terms this means, find something good in every person you meet. You don’t have to forget the bad, just don’t focus on it. Don’t let the world corrupt you with gossip and unnecessary talk. Accept everyone for who they are and enjoy them for the good they bring into the world.
I am truly honored to have been nominated a second time for the Liebster Award. This time I was nominated by When I’m with You . . . Whitney Ibe Blog. The author (Whitney) of the Whitney Ibe Blog is upbeat and full of sunshine. Whitney’s positive outlook is inspiring and I love to read her posts. If you haven’t checked out her blog, I encourage you to do so soon, because her inward and outward beauty sparkles through in her writing. Thank you for thinking of me Whitney.
The Liebster Award is an Internet Award given to bloggers by other bloggers. The German word “liebster” means: dearest, sweetest, kindest, nicest, beloved, lovely, kind, pleasant, valued, cute, endearing, welcome, and sweetheart. The Award is a nice way to recognize and welcome new bloggers, while allowing others to discover them, as well.
The rules of the Liebster Award are as follows:
1) Acknowledge the blog who nominated you for this award.
2) Answer 11 questions the blogger gave you.
3) Give 11 random facts about yourself.
4) Nominate 11 blogs.
5) Notify them.
6) Give them 11 questions to answer
What made you start blogging?I love to read and write. I’ve always wanted to write books. I love the Lord above all. When I was growing up I was taught to share God’s love with others. The church I attended called the sharing I’m referring to “witnessing”. I was taught that witnessing was wonderful and that we should share the gospel through our lives and words everywhere we go. The Bible talks about spreading the gospel. That is what I did.
Over time witnessing has become politically incorrect. As a supervisor at work I was told that I had to be careful about what I said because my workplace and I could be sued. I could lose my home if I mentioned God at work. I heard others say it wasn’t appropriate to say “Merry Christmas”. “Happy Holidays” was the correct holiday greeting. Well, if you have ever had God’s love inside you like I do, you will understand when I say I was about to explode. The funny thing is, I didn’t have to say anything because God’s love just radiates out of me. Over time I just became miserable. So, I sought out another way to spread God’s love, blogging. It helped me to feel more fulfilled. I felt a little like Jesus must have felt when he traveled home and his hometown rejected him, because most of my friends and family refused to look at my blog. I have been told “that was a coincidence, not a miracle,” “you are to legalistic,” and last week “you’re a fanatic”. This doesn’t bother me too much. I feel like it’s their loss. I pray that I will have the opportunity to write and publish books in the future?
If you could visit any country in the world, which would you visit?I love to travel. If I could go anywhere, I’d visit the Holy Lands first. Books, Maps, Photography and Internet information is wonderful and I’m thankful, but nothing is quite like seeing and experiencing places first hand. I want to go to the places we read about in our Bibles.
What is your favorite food? Anything my husband cooks is my favorite food! He’s an amazing chef! I am especially fond of fish.
What is your favorite sport? I’m not a big sports fan. I enjoying watching my college alma mater football team play (Florida State). I also enjoy watching figure skating, and swimming and diving teams. During warmer months I swim and I walk year round.
Do you prefer digital or physical books? Both. It’s a wonderful convenience to be able to bring hundreds of books on a phone or tablet with you everywhere you go. It’s awesome. However, I still like to hold a book in my hands. I make notes in my Bible, so that I can pass them down. Likewise, I have a digital and physical planner. To me it sometimes seems like the digital world is fragile. I often think of the loss of information in the library of Alexandria.
What is the biggest problem you encounter while writing? I want my writing to be perfect grammatically, and inspirationally. The days I feel my writing falls short, seem to be the days I have the most positive comments.
What color are your eyes? Green. Most of the time the whites of my eyes are red from Sjogren’s Syndrome, which makes them look even greener. I’ve had people tell me that my eyes look like they are bleeding sometimes.
Recount a brief childhood story. What happened? When I was a teenager I worked for the County School Board one summer giving swimming lessons. Five days a week my parents would drop me off at 6:30 in the morning to catch a bus that would take me and a few other brave teens to Blue Springs. Blue Springs has ice-cold water in the middle of the day. When we arrived the sun wasn’t high in the sky yet, and the trees shaded the edges of the swimming area. So, most days we spent half of the time trying to get wet above the knees.
The children we were teaching varied in size from kindergarten to I haven’t been able to graduate yet. So, some of my students were larger in stature than I was. In the middle of the swimming area was a floating dock about fifty to seventy-five feet from the surrounding three shorelines. All the experienced swimmers would hang out in the middle. So, it was my goal to have my students swimming to the dock and back by the end of the summer. The problem was most of the students couldn’t put their face in the crystal clear water when they started lessons, and the shorelines dropped to about twenty-five feet deep about ten feet away from the shore.
All summer I worked with the students until the last week of lessons had arrived. I was determined that I would have at least one student swimming to the dock successfully. However, I only had one who could dog paddle a few feet. On the last day of lessons I looked up into the eyes of my six-foot tall most successful student and proudly proclaimed “today you will graduate because you are going to swim to the dock! Isn’t that great!” He shook and looked worried. So I reassured him by saying “don’t worry, I’ll be right beside you and I can save you if you can’t make it.” I was about five foot three and weighed a little less than a hundred pounds. My student looked to be about three hundred pounds. I wasn’t worried at all though. He could dog paddle now.
We made our way side by side toward the floating dock. I was glowing with pride. After all, I had taught this football player to swim. As soon as we were about waist deep, he began to panic. So, I told him to just stand up. That should have been my sign to turn back, but I was convinced he could do it, and I was a “good” swimmer who had mastered life saving techniques. We continued across. It wasn’t long before the water was deep and my student knew it. He was on top of me like I was a floating log. It’s times like these that you realize the lifeguard’s are also students, who in this case were obviously not paying attention because they would have seen me bobbing up and down with a football player on my back. I’m guessing he wasn’t as popular as he thought either, because no one was trying to save him. Finally, I slapped him as hard as I could and said, “get a hold of yourself, the water is only a foot deeper than your height. If you go down, you can jump up off the bottom.” I don’t really know why he believed this, because if you looked down, the water was clear enough to see that it was easily twenty feet deep where we were swimming.
So, we kept inching towards the dock, with my student trying to drown me. I was thinking that I probably needed to ask for assistance to get him back to the shore, if we survived the trip over. Suddenly, he began to swim with great vigor. I looked at him and realized he was looking at a beautiful face on the dock. The girl waved and smiled. I guess you could say he didn’t want to seem embarrassed, because he pointed at me and said, “hey, I’m teaching this girl how to swim. I’ll be there in a minute. She’s having trouble.” I couldn’t believe my ears. I started to speak and he said “shut up. Just get me there and I will find my own way back.” That day I learned that love will find a way. He made it to the dock and spent the remainder of the time with this young lady. Then, he swam back to the shore. The best part of this story is the two later married and are still married today.
What type of music do you like to listen to? This is a tough question for me. I love praise, gospel, hymns, pop, 70’s and 80’s tunes, and classical music. I like some country music.
Do you collect anything? If so, what is it? Yes. I love books.
Where do you see yourself in five years? I see myself writing books, teaching and comforting others. In my free time, I will spend time with my family.
But the LORD stood with me and gave me strength. 2 Timothy 4:17
I hope you are enjoying a wonderful Saturday. My sweet grandson has spent the day with me while his mom sleeps. She’s a working nurse on midnight shift. I wasn’t sure if I could keep up with him all day, but the LORD gave me strength.
A few days ago I was provided an opportunity to do something I have wanted to do and prayed about for many years, teach Sunday School. Isn’t that great? I feel like this opportunity is something God is providing me, and conversely I think I might be an answer to someone else’s prayer. So, what’s holding me back? Only one thing, am I able to make the commitment physically? I know it sounds like virtually no exertion is involved, but for me just getting there takes a great deal of effort, and I want to honor my commitments. I know the answer, but hesitate because I know I have limitations. I also know that God will let me run around in circles like the Israelites in the desert as long as I can, but avoiding the opportunity only hurts me. So, I will ask God to stand with me and give me strength. Have you ever been in a similar situation? Please share.
He satisfies the thirsty and fills the hungry with good things. Psalm 107.9
Happy Thursday! It’s a great time to practice forgiveness.
Have you ever felt empty? Have you felt like no matter what you do, you can’t find happiness? Is being content something you can’t seem to wrap your mind around? Are you an overachiever, a workaholic, a perfectionist or something similar? Do you feel you have to fill every moment of the day with an activity? Do you dread quietness? I know how you feel. There is only one thing that can fill that hole, God. You can try everything you can think of, but I promise nothing will fill that hole but God. Start your day with God and put God first all day long, and he will fill the emptiness in your soul.
We can’t always see where the road leads, but God promises there is something better up ahead we just have to trust him. Psalm 56:3
Happy Wednesday! It’s a great day to Use Your Gifts to Change the World! So, what will you do?
Do you ever feel like you are unable to make positive change? Do you feel like the world is too big? Then, I have good news. The smallest of changes are viral in the scheme of changing the world. Whenever you do something as simple as smiling at someone having a bad day, the results are beneficial, and that’s not all. Positive changes grow exponentially. Yesterday, I actually heard a very nice lady, who collects items for children in need, say that she had so many people donate that she had to create a new list of items to prevent sending volunteer donors away. She was also taking overflow donations to other agencies. Isn’t that great! That’s how it should be. When we work together to help society, government doesn’t have to. As I’ve said so many times before, changing the world doesn’t have to involve donations or money. You can smile, give a friend a hug, tell the manager of a restaurant or store about an employee who is doing a good job, leave a note, and the list goes on and on. There is no limit to what YOU can do.
As you go out into the world today, start at home and radiate. Make a difference everywhere you go. God bless you.
It’s Try Something New Tuesday! A few weeks ago I began a new health journey through Noom Coach. This seems to be working for me. I just started week three and I’ve lost about 15 pounds. I’ve also been making healthier food choices and exercising more. Every day I try something new, which keeps the program fresh. I don’t just mean that I try new recipes or exercises, but I try new ways to conquer cravings and other temptations.
Life is similar. Sometimes we get in a rut of going through a day-to-day routine, which can wreak havoc on our relationships and our self-esteem. We can get so caught up in what we are focused on that we lose who we are and what we believe in. At the end of the day we don’t feel like we have enough time to enjoy life. We may not even think we are worthy of God’s love. Always remember that God thinks you are beautiful. You are his child and he loves you.
One way to prevent burnout and getting caught up in every day life routines is to look at your tasks differently. Noom Coach teaches to make a list of the “have to’s” and the “want to’s” in your life. Then mix match combinations on the list. I know this was intended for food and exercise, but why couldn’t you use it in general life. For example, if taking the kids to ball practice is on your “have to” list, and paying it forward is on your “want to” list, why not pick up other kids going to practice on the way and relieve another parent. If you have been wanting to read your Bible, but you can’t find time before or after work, take your lunch to work with you and find somewhere quiet to read. There are endless possibilities for work and home.
Remember, variety is the spice of life. I can’t wait to read what you plan to try. God bless you.