Monday, February 28, 2011

reason, season or lifetime

today a friendship ended. i am trying to practice generosity and wish her well but it is hard. i want to rant and rail about unfair expectations, but i will refrain. she was a friend during a period of time that i needed it and so i will be thankful for her presence in my life, not bitter about the parting.

Lord, i ask you to bless amy. you know what a difficult time she is going thru, with her depression and the troubles with her family. comfort her as only you can and give her peace in you. please send a new friend to her so she is not so lonely.

People come into your life for a reason, a season or a lifetime.
When you figure out which one it is,
you will know what to do for each person.

When someone is in your life for a REASON,
it is usually to meet a need you have expressed.
They have come to assist you through a difficulty;
to provide you with guidance and support;
to aid you physically, emotionally or spiritually.
They may seem like a godsend, and they are.
They are there for the reason you need them to be.

Then, without any wrongdoing on your part or at an inconvenient time,
this person will say or do something to bring the relationship to an end.
Sometimes they die. Sometimes they walk away.
Sometimes they act up and force you to take a stand.
What we must realize is that our need has been met, our desire fulfilled; their work is done.
The prayer you sent up has been answered and now it is time to move on.

Some people come into your life for a SEASON,
because your turn has come to share, grow or learn.
They bring you an experience of peace or make you laugh.
They may teach you something you have never done.
They usually give you an unbelievable amount of joy.
Believe it. It is real. But only for a season.

LIFETIME relationships teach you lifetime lessons;
things you must build upon in order to have a solid emotional foundation.
Your job is to accept the lesson, love the person,
and put what you have learned to use in all other relationships and areas of your life.
It is said that love is blind but friendship is clairvoyant.
~author unknown

Friday, February 25, 2011

you can have it all!

...just not all at the same time.

the life i have is a good one. an enviable and simple one. but i have not had a grateful heart lately and it bothers me that i am not more thankful for all that God has given to me. i have been bitter and ugly about some things. i have been controlling. i have been whiny and needy.

i want this. i want that.
i want, i want, i want.

i know the life i have is a good one. i know that getting stuff is not what happiness is about. i know that i am loved and provided for. i look around and see how much i have, how many of my everyday needs are met.

i still feel something missing.

'you can have it all just not all at the same time.' sometimes people are faced with hard choices, like the choice between food or medicine. many choices can seem insignificant. what to eat, what to wear, what to watch.

some choices we pretend we have no control over. a thought. an attitude. a comment.

i can have ambition or i can have contentment. i can have self-pity or i can have gratitude.

what is it that i want? i want a servant's attitude. please help me, Lord. fill me with gratitude for all that i have and have it pour out of me everyday.

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

you're beautiful

i love this song from mercy me. i hope it blesses you today too.

Days will come when you don't have the strength
And all you hear is you're not worth anything
Wondering if you ever could be loved
And if they truly saw your heart
They'd see too much

You're beautiful, You're beautiful
You are made for so much more than all of this
You're beautiful, You're beautiful
You are treasured, you are sacred, you are His
You're beautiful

Praying that you have the heart to fight
Cuz you are more than what is hurting you tonight
For all the lies you've held inside so long
But they are nothing in the shadow of the cross

You're beautiful, You're beautiful
You are made for so much more than all of this
You're beautiful, You're beautiful
You are treasured, you are sacred, you are His
You're beautiful

Before you ever took a breath
Long before the world began
Of all the wonders He possessed
There was one more precious
Of all the earth and skies above
You're the one He madly loves
Enough to die!

You're beautiful, You're beautiful
You are made for so much more than all of this
You're beautiful, You're beautiful
You are treasured, you are sacred, you are His
You're beautiful

Thursday, February 17, 2011

this i know...

jesus loves me.

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

a life worthy

With this in mind, we constantly pray for you, that our God may make you worthy of his calling, and that by his power he may bring to fruition your every desire for goodness and your every deed prompted by faith. ~2 Thessalonians 1:11

today was the funeral of an 11 year old boy. the thought of losing one of my sons makes me sick to my stomach. sick. and fearful. i pray constantly for my children to grow old so i don't have to know the pain of losing a child. i pray occasionally for my children to be good men; good husbands; faithful, honest and just.

i think i have it backwards. i should pray constantly for my children to be worthy of God's blessing, to grant them greatness for the Lord's army, and only occasionally for their health, safety and longevity. whoo-boy, hard for my mommy heart to do.

heavenly father, i pray for my sons, football and artist, to know you in their hearts and live you in their lives. i pray for them to submit to your authority and resist satan. i pray for them to fear you and gain wisdom. i pray for them to act obediently as your hands and feet in this world. i pray for them to be salt and light. i pray for them to make decisions based upon your word. i pray for them to show love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control to everyone they encounter to glorify your holy name. blanket them with your grace and mercy, and call them blessed. amen.


more prayers at, and

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

my cup runneth over

yellow tulips, dinner and a movie, picture frame for our family picture, three new serving bowls (the boy know how much i love dishware!), a calendar and $50 gift certificate to my favorite store. i am so lucky... blessed... loved!

supper with a friend tonight, pedicures with a friend tomorrow, scrapbooking with several friends on friday night, and watching a movie with a friend saturday afternoon. my heart is full.

plus, today looks like the perfect day for a run (50 degrees at only 9a.m.) and i am going to head out after work!

**Join us for Gratituesday at Heavenly Homemakers!

Monday, February 14, 2011

happy valentine's day

this morning i am making stained glass hearts (shaved crayons and wax paper) and writing poems for my boys. this afternoon i will attend their valentine's parties, and this evening i will be making them a wonderful supper and watching the cobsy show.

royal lion with a tender heart
yearning for deep friendship
artistic dreamer and creative thinker
no smile is as bright as yours

eager to please with a
voracious desire to learn
aspiring to play football
noble in thought and deed

Sunday, February 13, 2011

His banner over me is love

the Lord is mine and i am His.

i found myself humming today, completely out of the blue. it was a happy tune and made me feel good. i couldn't place the song right away, but once i realized what i was humming, i stopped. stopped and thought about the words.

the Lord is mine and i am His; His banner over me is love.

He covers me with love. He calls me his own. He saves me from myself. He allows me to lean into Him with my troubles and worries. He is mine.

such generosity from my Lord and King.

Thursday, February 10, 2011

fill my soul

Each of you should use whatever gift you have received to serve others, as faithful stewards of God’s grace in its various forms. ~1 peter 4:10

fill my soul so full that it overflows and you can use me to serve others. i love you Lord.

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

how to really give

i read a post online that really encouraged me and i hope it encourages you too.
start here -


How to Really Give:

* Don’t limit your giving or make it fit into your pre-conceived ideas - give of yourself, your time, your money, your life. Give more than feels comfortable.
* Involve your children - even let them lead you. There’s a reason God asks us to have child-like faith.
* Trust God - giving is partner to trust. We often don’t give because we don’t trust. It’s hard to really give with open hands when we’ve clenched our fists over what we possess.
* Don’t be surprised if you fall in love with giving! There’s something deeply spiritual and satisfying about letting it go and giving it away.

**and then read the rest of this post here -

Tuesday, February 8, 2011

embracing the path

generosity comes easily to some people. for me, it is usually a secondary thought. like when you are talking with someone, and after they have walked away you remember that you forgot to ask them how they are doing since their husband lost his job or their pet died or whatever. for my husband, generosity comes naturally. he is eager to be helpful and thoughtful.

this morning the snow was coming down in bucketfuls. bfp woke me up and said, 'i want you to take my vehicle this morning'. i mumbled 'okay' and rolled over to go back to sleep. bfp left me a sweet note with his keys and even turned the vehicle around so i could pull straight out of the garage instead of backing up. he has embraced being generous.

i am helpful and thoughtful too, but it takes more of an effort on my part. i am glad that i am challenging myself to be more conscious of giving this month. it is helping me to see where God can shine through me in the little things.

Monday, February 7, 2011

it's the little things i love

you know how sometimes you get in a funk and you can't get out of it? well that's been me lately with cleaning the house. i was in a funk. i couldn't get out of it.

i decided to switch things up.

i wrote down 12 chores i do to keep the main floor clean on notecards - mudroom, bathroom, clutter, dust, sweep, mop, dining table, vacuum, dishes, counters, trash and mirrors.

now we make cleaning a game that everyone participates in. everyone draws a card (keeping mopping and the counter out until sweeping and dishes are done), i set the timer for 10 minutes and we race to complete it. we do this 3 times for a half hour total. ten minutes is the limit so if the chore isn't done, it will wait for the next cleaning. now that we have been doing this bi-weekly (or more), each chore usually takes less than the ten minutes to complete! the kids are so proud when they beat the timer.

i am loving it and the boys, including bfp, don't mind helping out either. i love how much time it saves me (30 minutes of cleaning versus 2 hours). i love that the kids are helping more without a fight. i love that no one has the same job to do each time. i love that it makes cleaning a little bit fun.

it's the little things.

Sunday, February 6, 2011

some days you wake up sad

summer, fall, winter, spring.
not just weather,
my life is in the midst of winter.
cold, dreary winter.
the snow is falling, the wind is blowing, the storm surrounds me.
i look out into the frigid white and see the frozen beauty,
perfect and agonizing.
it makes my heart race and my breathe stick in my throat.
it leaves me chilled
and melancholy.
this storm will pass.
another may take its place.
but that storm will also pass.
the icy, brittle blanket of winter can not stay forever.
spring will come.
will soften the unblemished landscape to dirty mushy gray.
will melt the painful sorrow to reveal traces of
dingy beauty.
the slush will recede,
and the hurt will be soaked up.
Sometimes it's gonna be days like this
Sometimes it's gonna be rain like this
Sometimes you're gonna feel pain like this
Sometimes you gotta work hard for it

Saturday, February 5, 2011

He designs my life

He has a purpose for everything. and everyone. even judas.

sometimes that thought is hard to think. i like hating judas. i like thinking that judas was a waste of humanity. i like judging judas for what he did. but judas had a purpose. without judas, the chain of events leading my savior to die for my sins would not have been set into motion.

there are many people i don't like - i don't like their opinions, political views, actions, tone of voice, etc. sometimes, i *like* not liking them. sometimes, i feel superior to them.

they are God's children and He has a purpose for them.

uh oh, looks like i need an attitude adjustment. thank you, Lord, for this opportunity to grow!

Friday, February 4, 2011

defining moments

on mondays and thursdays i work with a hoarder to try and clean up the apartment. my client hoards empty soda cans and napkins, as well as the typical clothes, accessories, knickknacks, magazines, mementos, etc.

yesterday, my client was willing to dump 7 boxes of photographs, but would not release 7 napkins. it made perfect sense in my client's mind to keep the napkins but release the pictures. the napkins of past meals enjoyed held more value for my client than the photos of family and friends. it made me sad that my client was keeping trash instead of captured moments in time. but it got me thinking - if my heart were an apartment, what would people see?

would they see a mess? would they see the clutter of a hoarder? would they see that because of clutter, i can not find the things that mean the most? would they see that i threw out the important things?

how often do i release the valuable things, but keep the trash?

how often do i mistake the trash for something important? why do i get upset about missing 60 seconds of t.v. when my child (who is supposed to be in bed) is hollering that they need me? why do i get irritated with my husband when i have to repeat myself? these things are not important and yet i treat them as if an inconvenience is more valuable than the people i love.

it helps to be able to recognize what is trash and what is meaningful. trash is all things that don't honor and glorify God's love for us. meaningful is what God finds lovely, true, right, excellent, worthy, virtuous. i like a clean, clutter-free house... and i want a pure, holy heart. i don't need 7 boxes of photographs to recall what God's love is, but i won't release them to make room for garbage/napkins. from now on, trash is not welcome in my heart. there is only room for meaning.

**what trash do you hoard in your heart? what are you willing to let go of?

Thursday, February 3, 2011

intentional living

"If you don't know where you are going, any road will get you there." ~Lewis Carroll

day three of being more generous with my time and my talents: volunteering at the retirement center. i enjoy my time with the elderly and do not consider it 'work' to be with them. my boys are coming with me which divides my attention (as i have to make sure they are behaving appropriately). i love sharing stories with these people and listening to their knowledge. it seems to me as if many of them lived their life with the end result in mind. they knew where they wanted to end up; it didn't 'just happen'. if they wanted a new car, they saved up for one and didn't buy it on credit. if they wanted to travel, they planned it down to the last detail. if they wanted to 'go out', they took dance lessons and went to the moose or vfw. if they wanted a clean house, they made a schedule and stuck to it. they lived life intentionally. i hope someone says that about me when i am that age.

Wednesday, February 2, 2011


what does it mean to serve someone? more specifically, what is the meaning of 'serve'?

-to be of use or benefit
-to prepare and offer
-to wait on
-to give obedience
-to labor on behalf of
-to exert yourself in aid of

having made the decision to give more generously of my self (my time and my talents) during february, i am placing myself in the service of my children again today (another snow day). we are making crafts, playing computer games together and talking.

it sounds idyllic, but it is tiring to practice an attitude of servanthood towards my children. i was bound to their needs when they were younger, but i kind of felt like because they were older, we were beyond this. yesterday and today have shown me how much my children still need and want my undivided attention. no matter how tired i am.

Tuesday, February 1, 2011

28 days of giving

this month i want to work on being more generous. i want to make a conscious effort to give more every day. even when i don't feel like it. we (bfp and i) are fairly good about giving of our money, so i want to give of my time and my talents.

today, i am spending time with my children making cookies and playing games. i am giving them compliments and encouragement. i am pushing aside my own desire to veg out on the couch, and although we are having fun, the constant focus on THEIR wants is exhausting.
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