Tuesday, January 29, 2013

Eclectic Relationships

When you talk, do not say harmful things, but say what people need—words that will help others become stronger. Then what you say will do good to those who listen to you. Ephesians 4:29 

I have decorated my home in an eclectic style from a broad range of memories and inspiration. I have used what I love instead of what someone else says that I should or should not use in my home. My home reflects good memories, people, places or things that have inspired me along the way.   I have things around the house that bring back wonderful memories of places I have traveled and been inspired to use my creativity. When I look around my home it all comes together in my mind according to my personal journey of life!

My relationships are much the same way as I decorate my home. I also have friends that I have made good memories with and have inspired me much in the same way. There are so many types of friends in life who we meet growing up, at school, at church, our neighbors, at work, etc. The one thing that I find important in any friendship is someone who gives affirmation. Not someone who just tells me what I want to hear but someone who I know loves me genuinely to build me up instead of tearing me down.

Over the years I have had all types of friends but the one thing that I have learned from watching my own children is the importance of choosing your friends more carefully. I spent years giving my children affirmation to help reinforce their self esteem and confidence only to have them choose a friend who can undo all the years I have invested with their criticism. One of my grand kids confided in me how one of their friends brought them to tears with their harsh words. I began to affirm her and thought about how all of my own children had been defeated so many times by the negativity and criticism of others.

Later on that same day I witnessed as one of my kids was being criticised by one of their friends in a sarcastic remark.   I knew that no matter how much I tried to correct that situation and affirm my adult child in that untruth that the damage was already done and it would be to no avail. It makes me sad to think that all those years of affirmation could be damaged by people who are critical in nature. It also teaches me to be careful in who I personally choose to be around too. I can only pray that my own children and grandchildren do not allow others to destroy their self esteem and confidence. I can't control what others do but I can choose to decorate my life a lot like my home with eclectic relationships that inspire me!

Michael Minot tweeted: Your value doesn't somehow decrease just because someone else doesn't recognize your worth. 

T
This picture was taken when I was walking on Peanut Island, May 2013.

Monday, January 28, 2013

Don't Worry!

Matthew 6:31 “Therefore do not worry, saying, ‘What shall we eat?’ or ‘What shall we drink?’ or ‘What shall we wear?"



We know as Christians that we shouldn't worry if we trust God but there is plenty to worry about for everyone in this crazy world. The problem is how do we not let that worry defeat us? In the scriptures above, Jesus is giving us some examples of what we worry about such as our health (what shall we eat & drink) and our possessions (what shall we wear).

Some people believe that these types of worries are only for the poor but actually the rich worry too. The poor worry about how they will get these things, the wealthy worry about losing them. Actually there are so many things we could spend our days worrying about in our relationships, job security, family, health and the list is endless.


Worry is stressful to our mind, body and soul and can make us physically sick. It can also take away precious time from our life if we spend too much time worrying; such as hours, days, months and even years. Is there really anything good that comes out of worrying? I can't think of a thing!


If we want to stop worrying then let's begin to take action steps to change this unhealthy pattern. First of all we should pray....then we need to ask others to pray for us too.  Once we have given that worry over to prayer we should begin enjoying creation and taking the time to look at what is beautiful in the world. The ocean is the place where I like to take my worries and my sadness because I feel God's presence; and I pray that I am able to leave them there! 


God has provided so much beauty around us to be able to enjoy and see His goodness. He provides us with His Word to give us hope of uncertainty. He provides us with good people to help us sort out the chaos and assist us in making sense of what is truly important. 


We cannot control those things around us....and most of the time I can't even control my response to those things.....but God has a way of guiding, teaching and comforting while in the midst of the worry....


I took this picture October 2013 of the typewriter in our office that I have used since the early 90's - I love the wheelwriter 10 and get a kick out of it when young people come in here and look at it as if it is something out of Jurassic Park.

Monday, January 14, 2013

A Time For Everything

Ecclesiastes 3:1 There is a time for everything,
   and a season for every activity under the heaven...
 


Solomon describes in chapter 3 the cycles of life: sowing & reaping; weeping & laughing, mourning & dancing; gaining & losing; silence & speaking; loving & hating.....so how do we handle these cycles? Do we only respond well or with gratitude when they are the ones that we want? Or do we trust God in ALL of them?
 

God is in control of all that happens to us, good and bad. So what is our response to Him in everything?  I think we have a tendency to love God when it is all good but then angry or hate God when things are bad. Like our children do when they don't get their way or have to do something they don't care to do. One moment our kids are thrilled with us because we are taking them to the mall but the next moment they are hating us for asking them to clean their room.
 

I have learned so much about my relationship with God from watching my children respond to me as their mother and I know where they get it from.....their father! HA, I wish.....no I have to take responsibility here; unfortunately, they follow my example!


God's plans for your life far exceed the circumstances of your day! 
                                                                                                                              Louie Giglio




Saturday, January 5, 2013

Be Kind!

Be kind to one another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, even as God in Christ forgave you. Ephesians 4:32

Just recently someone asked me what I thought they should do about their circumstance. It involved another individual and I really did not know the answer. I explained to them that right now there was no clear direction to the situation but for the moment I had some advice. First of all, pray that God would reveal the right answer and second of all while waiting for the answer, be KIND!

Kindness is always the right thing to do in any circumstance. I believe it has the power to heal. 

A happy marriage is the union of two good forgivers! Ruth Bell Graham

 

Thursday, January 3, 2013

A Love Lesson!

"In everything, therefore, treat people the same way you want them to treat you, for this is the Law and the Prophets. Matthew 7:12

One of the best books I read on relationships was "His Needs Her Needs" by Dr. Willard Harley. It was a real eye opener for me to understand my husband and the responsibility I had to be a better wife. My husband grew up with 4 sisters so he already had a better understanding of women in general. It wasn't until we began to apply some of those principles that we saw a great difference in our marriage.


After attending a Promise Keepers Conference many years ago my husband implemented something he learned there that he continues to do today. He began to sit down each day to talk and listen. At first it was a bit strange and then some days we found ourselves talking for several hours. He has been great about making sure we still do this and what a difference it makes on our relationship.

There are so many wonderful tools today to show us how to have a better marriage. I am grateful to those who take time to write and teach about these principles in order for many of us to make changes and live more wonderfully with those we love. Another great book written is "The Five Love Languages" by Gary Chapman which taught me so much about myself.

My prayer: Lord show me how to love like you have loved me!

My mom took this picture of people dancing when she was visiting Paris, France in 2010.

Wednesday, January 2, 2013

What Are You Saying?



Psalm 19:14 Let the words of my mouth and the meditation of my heart 
                            Be acceptable in Your sight,
                             O LORD, my strength and my Redeemer.

written January 2, 2011:

We are accountable for all our words and it can bless our life or curse it. That is a pretty powerful statement when you realize how important what you say is in your daily walk. I have heard people say, "it figures ~ always happens to me" and it does because they have said it and now they are living it. "Just my luck" is another term I have heard often when something goes wrong and because they have said it, now they are living it. Some of these sayings came to these individuals when they were children because someone uttered the same curse on their life and they have continued that generational curse.


Let's be aware of what we say and that we do not use words that will not only cause harm to others but to ourselves.



Stop being afraid of what could go wrong and think of what could go right.  ~Terry Squires @OneImpact Bible


 I took this picture as I was traveling with my mother during a 
snow blizzard in Tennessee 2009.