Category Archives: Kindness

Use Your Gifts to Change the World Wednesday – Effective Meetings

Never be lacking in zeal, but keep your spiritual fervor, serving the Lord.  Romans 12:11

Good Morning!  For me this is Wednesday go to meeting day!  All the meetings I’m attending today are important, but one of the meetings is of particular importance to me.   So, this morning I was up and preparing early.

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So, what do you do when you want to ensure success at your meeting?  I have a few tips to help ensure a successful meeting, whether it is at church or in the workplace.

  1.  Pray.  Before you start preparing ask God to help you know what you need to do and to guide you toward the best outcome. A2899DE4-04AE-4E9A-A379-AC640B630121 If you have had a bad experience in the past, this is the time to let that go.  It’s a new day.
  2. It’s Not About You!  Also it is important to remember this meeting is not about you.  It’s about what’s on the agenda.  127CD7CB-4D8D-4BAD-BDFE-C6E4B0F8FB60So, don’t get caught up in a desire to be remembered for the meeting. Your heavenly reward will be so much better anyway!
  3. Make sure the meeting is really needed.  There is nothing worse than sitting in a meeting knowing you have things to do when everything could have been resolved in a short personal conversation, email or text.
  4. Review the attendees.  It’s important to make sure the right people are attending, but make sure you don’t invite too many because it may be difficult to get anything accomplished.
  5. Prepare an agenda with a timeline.  It’s good to have an agenda to keep attendees on track and ensure all important points are covered.  Don’t include too many items.  It’s better to have a follow-up meeting than a meeting that lasts too long.  Also, an agenda informs the attendees of what the meeting is about and what direction it needs to go.
  6. Have a sign-in sheet.  The sign-in sheet provides attendance information, but that is where I like to collect additional contact information, and availability.
  7. Start on time.  While I can understand not wanting to go back and explain what someone has missed, don’t hold up the meeting because someone is running late.  It’s disrespectful to those who have given up time out of their schedule to attend.  If you are attending a meeting and you’re late, apologize.  D52F0BFB-DE91-4983-BA89-9ACDC274E833.jpegUnfortunately, starting a meeting with a prayer is not always an option. If it is, by all means do it.  If not, you can always say a silent prayer whether you are the leader or an attendee.  I’m thankful that in my area, prayer is usually welcomed.
  8. Facilitate.  Encourage participation and monitor contributions to the discussion, while keeping the meeting moving.  If someone brings up a point that is not on the agenda.  Simply explain that their point is good, but it should be addressed at a future meeting.
  9. Take notes.  In many meetings it is not necessary to write down what every person says.  Instead, it is helpful is to jot down important points, task assignments,  and future meeting dates.  If you need to remember what every person says, bring a recording device.
  10. End on time with a plan.  Toward the end of the meeting, make sure everyone knows why they were at the meeting and the direction they need to go. Ensure the meeting doesn’t go over time.  It is better to plan a follow-up meeting.  Ensure any follow-up meetings are scheduled before attendees leave.
  11. Follow-up after the meeting.  I like to send an email restating what has taken place, or a summary of discussions and decisions.  More formal meetings might have minutes.  This helps refresh the attendees’ memories.  When you have several meetings in one day, it may be difficult to remember everything that happened at one particular meeting.  An added bonus is you can restate when and where the next meeting will take place.
  12. If the meeting did not seem to go the direction you wanted, remember that God has a bigger plan and you asked for His guidance.  I’ve prayed about situations before and it seemed like God didn’t answer my prayers.  Later, I found out He did.  So, have faith and trust.

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Well, I’d better get busy!  If you are involved in planning or participating in meetings, I hope these tips will help you.  God bless you.

Try Something New Tuesday – Change Your Focus and Attitude

But covet earnestly the best gifts: and yet shew I unto you a more excellent way.
‭‭1 Corinthians‬ ‭12:31‬ ‭KJV‬‬

Happy Tuesday!  It’s a great time to try something new.

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Have you ever looked around and thought, “wow! life is unfair”?  I think that way too sometimes, especially when I’m focused on what others do, say and have.  God can help others as he deems necessary.  We don’t usually know all the circumstances involved.  So, what might seem unfair on the surface level to us, is needed for the ones of whom we are jealous. Don’t fall into the evil snare of jealousy.  It  always leads to problems.  C4473AF6-4F41-4C0C-9E61-B7A6AD544879  Instead of being jealous, try something new.  Focus on helping others, especially the ones who draw out the little green monster.  I think you will find that when your focus changes, so will your attitude.

I can’t wait to read your stories.  God bless you.

Use Your Gifts to Change the World Wednesday – Invite Others

I sought the Lord, and he delivered me from all my fears.            Psalm 34:4

Good Morning.  It is a cold Wednesday in northwest Florida this morning.  I am so blessed to have a warm coat, gloves, and heated seats in my car.  As you go out today, remember there are others who are not as fortunate.  Maybe they have lost sight of where they need to be, or maybe they have given up all hope.  Do what you can to help them.

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This morning while I was getting ready for work, I was planning our Sunday School Christmas Party!  I’m so excited. I have prayed that God will send me more people, and I am optimistic that maybe I will see some of them on Sunday.  As I was praying, I felt like God was telling me to invite people I wouldn’t normally invite.  You don’t have to be homeless to need help.  There are people who have money, but are misguided.  Then, it occurred to me that you could do the same at your church.

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So, if you are in my area, join us for Sunday School. If not, be sure to go this week and invite some folks to join you.  This time of year is a wonderful time to worship God and fellowship with others.  Trust me when I say, it will enrich your life beyond measure. I plan to invite everyone I see.  If you take on the challenge, let me know what happens.   God bless you!

Spread the Love Friday – Warm them up!

And he said unto me, My grace is sufficient for thee: for my strength is made perfect in weakness. Most gladly therefore will I rather glory in my infirmities, that the power of Christ may rest upon me.
‭‭2 Corinthians‬ ‭12:9‬ 

Good morning!  It’s still cold and raining in Florida.

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I woke up early today to take my grandson, Landon to school only to learn I had mixed up the days.  Add to that, my cold now includes a sore throat.  So, as I was sitting here aggravated with myself, I received a clear message from God.  “Take them warm hot chocolate.  They are working in the cold and rain.”  At first I thought . . . What?  I’m sick.  I told myself that I would work on my blog post since I had extra time.  Then I heard it again. “Take them something warm.  They are cold.”  Okay, this time I hear and understand clearly, but who?  Who is cold?  So, I said “no problem God, but show me who.”  I began pulling up my blog and I heard it again.  I know this sounds a little nuts to some of you, but I feel like I’m supposed to share this.  If it is cold this morning where you are, join me in taking a thermos of hot chocolate or coffee with you when you go out.  Someone will need it today, and we will know who it is when we see them.  Hmmm.  Maybe it wasn’t a mistake that I woke up early.  As I have been typing this post, my sore throat has eased up.

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Today, I challenge you to take something to warm to at least one person who is out in the cold. I can’t wait to hear what you have to share about this experience.  I will share as well.   Stay blessed.

 

 

Use Your Gifts to Change the World Wednesday – Keep a Thankful Heart

I love you Lord, my strength.  Psalm 18:1

Happy Wednesday!

Is your praise and thanksgiving to God truly heartfelt, or are you just going through the motions of prayer?  Do you have a routine and a rote prayer you say at certain hours to do your duty, so to speak?  It’s easy to get into a routine when we are attempting to keep from forgetting that there is something we need to do.  However, it’s sad that we need a reminder in our busy world to be thankful when we see food on our table.  It should be enough to know that people are starving every day, but it isn’t because we are removed from the hunger.  We all know what it is like to be hungry for a few minutes or a couple of hours, but occasionally at meal time we should multiply that feeling by days in our minds to understand how blessed we are.  Having the opportunity to get up and go to work is such a blessing, too.  How many times do we grumble and groan about going to work?  What if we had no work or way to take care of our families?  I’m not saying that we should make ourselves miserable every day thinking about people who have less, but sometimes we should stop and think about how truly  blessed we are.  Even when we think things are at the very worst, we are still so much more blessed than many throughout the world.  Then, we should pray with sincere thanksgiving and praise to God.  God knows your heart.  Show him the adoration that he deserves.

Today, I encourage you to be truly thankful and praise God throughout your day.  Then, do one thing to make one person’s life a little better.  God bless you.

 

Try Something New Tuesday – Just Say Jesus

Let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts.  Colossians 3:15

Happy Tuesday.  It’s a great day to try something new.

Over the last couple of weeks, I have seen so much despair around me.  I have heard stories about divorce, custody battles, breakups, sickness, suicide threats, financial stress, sick children, abused children, sick family members, job stress, mental illness and so much more.  Have you ever fallen into one of these categories or do you know someone who has?  Most of us have at one time or another had to deal with these types of stress.  The good news is, you do the best you can and then you turn it over to Jesus.  It’s that easy.  You don’t have to spend more money or take a class.  Sometimes the simplest answers are the most difficult to grasp.  So today, turn everything over to our Lord and trust in his peace.  If you know someone going through a tough time, please pray for them.

God Bless you.

Liebster Award – 2nd Nomination

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

My Answers

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.

My nominees are:

M.K. Aneal

Kristi Anne’s Haven

Charles Earl Harrel

The Beauty of Words

The Godly Chic Diaries

Anna Waldherr

Camie’s Cozy Corner

Brandon J. Adams

Plucking Of My Heartstrings

Wizzymedpower

Inside Cup

Questions For My Nominees:

  1.  What inspired you start blogging?
  2. If you could visit any country in the world, which would you visit
  3. What is your favorite hobby?
  4. What is your favorite holiday?
  5. Do you prefer digital or physical books?
  6. What is the biggest problem you encounter while writing?
  7. What color are your eyes?
  8. Recount a brief childhood story. What happened?
  9. What type of music do you like to listen to?
  10. Do you collect anything? If so, what is it?
  11. Where do you see yourself in five years?
    Congratulations everyone. Enjoy the rest of your day.

Ask the Lord to Stand with You

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.

God bless you.

Forgiveness Thursday – God Fulfills

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.

God bless you,

Use Your Gifts to Change the World Wednesday – Radiate God’s Love

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.