Friday, April 30, 2010

Letting Others Have a "Say"

Have you ever let someone else hinder the person you were meant to be?

Think about it for a minute. Remember that time you had that great idea and someone told you it was too hard or too silly and they talked you out of it? Remember when you wanted to start fresh, abandon something that really wasn’t good for your life and someone “guilted” you into staying where you were? Sure – we’ve all been there. We’ve all let others label us or make us doubt our own heart. Why do we do that?

I think it’s because deep down we have insecurities that we don’t measure up – that we don’t have what it takes. But we do. Oh, we do!

I believe each and every one of us has “what it takes.” We just have to believe in ourselves. We have to dig deep sometimes and overcome some ghosts in our own past. Not always fun but sometimes very necessary.

We will never feel free to be who we were meant to be if we listen to the voices around us so much that we fail to see who is looking out for us and offering us encouraging advice and who is simply content having us where we are in our life because that means they feel comfortable too.

Don’t let someone else hinder you from becoming who you were meant to be. So what if your dream is a little bit crazy! So what if the odds are stacked against you? At least you will have tried.

As in the words of my wise daughter, “There are no mistakes or failures, only lessons.”

Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Loving The Sound of Nothing

Sometimes my ears get overwhelmed. Just too much noise. I’ve noticed that on the days where there is a lot of “buzz” in my world, I tend to get grumpier more easily.

I think that people underestimate the need to “check out” of noises for awhile. I think people forget (until they experience it) just how much it is needed. We have the noises of radio, tv, traffic, dogs barking, phones ringing, and so much more. It can get to be overload really fast!

There have been more than a few days where I’ve gone to bed at night and just breathed a deep sigh while I’ve embraced the quiet. It brings peace to my heart when there is so much chaos and hubbub that loves to inundate my life.

I hope I can teach my kids the value of quiet. I know kids usually love activity, music, and noise. It’s exciting to them and adds fun to their life. But I want them to learn to value the sound of silence as well. I want them to feel the peace, clarity, and refreshment that comes over their heart, mind, and soul when they clear out all the other noise for awhile just to hear their own thoughts.

The older I get, the more I value the moments I get to hear the sound of “nothing.” They are needed and valued and in an ever-increasing noisy world, I do not take them for granted.

Monday, April 26, 2010

Finding God's Strength

I hate confrontation. I will avoid it at all costs. I get sick to my stomach just thinking about it. I’d much rather run from a situation or hide from it than get into a tumultuous event. Some people just seem to be looking to pick a fight and I want no part of that.

Yet I was reading something in Bible Study recently that really pricked my heart. It was talking about Paul in the Bible and all the things he went through (some of which he could have avoided) being beaten, stripped, imprisoned, etc. And yet we find him in jail praying and singing praises and hymns to God! Does that not just blow you away? I think if I were in prison I’d be in a ball crying my eyes out!

The thing is – Paul found something that so many of us either don’t find or fail to see is ours if we ask for it – and that is God’s strength and peace. Somehow, some way in the midst of his horrible ordeals, He was able to access a strength that was not his own. He found a strength that surpassed his own human understanding and with it came the peace that His great God was in control and would take care of him.

That knowledge really humbles me because here I am doing anything I can to avoid suffering, hurt, and loss in the world and Paul experienced all of that and yet he could still sing in prison? I want that kind of faith.

Years ago I would be afraid to say that aloud for fear that God would grant me my request. I would be afraid that He’d send all sorts of trials and tribulations my way just so that I could discover “that kind of faith.” But now I look at it in a different light. I see that it’s that very kind of faith that can make less of any trial or tribulation when normally you would fear they would break you. It’s the kind of faith that sweeps over you with such assurance that your heart is filled with a calm peace, a solid strength, and an acceptance of what “is.” Oh to have that kind of a faith!

I am so humbled. I experience so little compared to some of the men and women of the Bible – heck to some of the men and women around me and yet, I act so frail.

“For God did not give us a spirit of fear or timidity but of power, love, and self control.”

That’s what I want to be about. That’s what I want to claim. That’s who I want to be.

I don’t want to run anymore. I want to feel God fill me with His strength and power. I want to let Him work through me. It’s time to start lifting my head high and holding onto the One who holds my life in His hands.

This world is all about battles and though I’d rather not fight them, I don’t want to run from them anymore. God’s Glory can never be shown when I do.

Saturday, April 24, 2010

The Gift of Sunshine

I want to say a 'thank you' to Barbie over at My Freshly Brewed Life. She was so kind to give me this "Sunshine Award." This award is given to blogs that inspire others, and show positivity and creativity.

This is what Barbie said about me....

Dionna @ Beauty In The Storm - Dionna is just plain honest. She writes from her heart and her words always cause me to quiet my heart and ponder.

I am touched, Barbie. I am so glad that God can use my words and what I learn from life to help you to quiet your heart and ponder. It's truly humbling. You brought sunshine to MY heart by your kind words. So, thank you!

Thursday, April 22, 2010

Losing It

Sometimes I think we have a right to “lose it.”

The older I get, the more I realize that having it “all together” is not what it’s cracked up to be. It’s usually only an affront, a pose, an image for others. No one has it all together. And honestly – sometimes life just bites. It can be really unfair. Really cruel and cold.

So why shouldn’t we lose it a little? Isn’t that more honest than trying to be really composed when everything inside of us is screaming?

In the movie “Love’s Abiding Joy” a couple loses their baby girl. There is one poignant scene where the mother goes out by a tree when she can contain herself no longer and kicks, yells, and cries out to God. I cannot watch it without getting tears in my eyes. She falls to her knees and looks up yelling “Why? Why?” And even though my heart hurts at the thought of feeling that way, I love this scene. Because she is being honest. I mean let’s face it – we all know that’s how she’s feeling anyways – why disguise it?

God wants us to be honest with Him.

Who cares that others will think we are strange? Who cares if we look like a maniac? Don’t we all just need to “lose it” once in awhile? The person who “loses it” I think sometimes finds more focus and meaning than those of us who try to “hold it all together” all of the time. I think through the rawness of their emotions, they sometimes find purpose, meaning, and possibly healing can begin when needed.

I’ll be honest. Sometimes when I’m by myself I’ve had a good cryfest or yelled out to God. And it feels good. It feels so good. I think being honest with ourselves is important and the only stepping stone to moving forward at times.

I’m not ever condoning hurting anyone else in our emotional releases. I AM saying though that sometimes when we are in a safe spot, the most needed thing may be to do some yelling, screaming, and thrashing about between us and God. He can take it.

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

For This Moment....

For this moment ~ I’m going to forget my problems, my battles, my struggles and I’m going to smile.

For this moment ~ I’m going to focus on joy instead of pain.

For this moment ~ I’m going to laugh, have fun, enjoy what I’ve been given.

I spend enough time dwelling on issues that need fixed or changed. I give enough of my mind over to worrying and stressing. But for this moment, I’m just going to think of my blessings and my gifts from God. I’m going to feel His love and let it heal me…for this moment.

I’m going to take in the small things that I often overlook – whether it’s one of my children wanting my company or my husband smiling at me in adoration. I’m not going to miss the beautiful sunshine that shines on my face or the bountiful selection of food in my kitchen. I’m going to be thankful and give thanks for everything I can find.

For this moment, I’m going to laugh instead of get upset. I’m going to love instead of hate and I’m going to live instead of inwardly die over everything that “isn’t,” “wasn’t,” or “can’t be.”

For this moment ~ I’m going to grow my trust in God, my faith, my peace, and my joy. So that in the next moment I’m stronger, wiser, and better.

Sunday, April 18, 2010

Combining Mother's & Father's Day

I’m all about creating my own special traditions. I don’t know why, but I’ve kind of been in a mood to buck worldly standard and traditions lately; instead, creating my own. I mean, why do we have to do something or celebrate something just because the world says we do?

Take Mother’s Day for example. I love being celebrated. It’s good for my family to remember that they need to appreciate all that a mom does. But honestly – I love being celebrated more when it’s done out of their own initiative instead of forced. It means more to my heart. And I know that sometimes life gets busy and money gets tight.

In 2009 my husband and I decided to do something different. We decided to combine our Mother’s Day and Father’s Day gifts into one gift that we both could enjoy. No need to go buy a bunch of smaller stuff that maybe we don’t really want or can’t use. There are so many bigger items that we never seem to get around to buying or getting. So unless our girls had a big problem with it, that’s what we decided to do. (And they didn’t.)

We decided to buy a porch swing. I have always wanted one. Yet it wasn’t really reasonable to get one on top of mother’s day gifts and then father’s day gifts. So we decided to get a combo gift. I relished sitting in that swing for the very first time and it’s something that our whole family will enjoy.

We have done the same thing many times for our anniversary. Instead of buying each other something, we invest into our marriage, our home and life together by buying one bigger thing to share and enjoy in together. It makes sense and it feels good to know that we believe in our future.

Celebrating someone you love can be done in so many different ways. Do what works for you. I think you will find – as we did – that sometimes your way is so much more meaningful than how the rest of the world does something.

Thursday, April 15, 2010

Expand Your Bubble

Sometimes we start living life in a bubble. We have the same set of friends and family around us giving us the same set of values, insight, and opinions. We never hear anything or experience anything different. Not always a bad thing – but not a stretching/growing thing either.

That’s why I love twitter and blogging so much. You get out of your bubble and your own little view of the world and you get to see more, hear more, feel more. You grow both personally, emotionally, and spiritually.

At least I do.

Your bubble is expanded and you start opening your horizons, changing your habits, dreaming more, and trying new things. You gain fresh ideas, objective perspectives, and honesty from people who have nothing to gain by their advice to you.

I love this part of technology that God has given us. It has blessed my life and shown me amazing, fun, and touching things about life.


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