Thursday, December 30, 2010

I Wonder...

Life goes by so quickly. So much happens in a year’s time.



I wonder – next year at this time, just what I will have gone through?


I wonder what challenges and obstacles I will have faced. Will I be stronger and wiser – or will I feel a little beaten down and need time to heal?


I wonder what new and exciting things that I never would have guessed would happen – did; all because my Lord wanted to bless me and love on me.


I wonder what loved ones I will have had to say goodbye to – whether from illness or accidents?


I wonder what dreams will have been realized in my life. Will I have started to dream new ones? Will I have said goodbye to old ones that are no longer important to me?


I wonder if I will use my time more wisely or still take it for granted?


How many lost opportunities will I regret letting pass me by?


How often will I look at my kids and know my time with them at home is that much shorter?


What will my health be like in a year? Better – or – worse?


Will I be more confident?


I wonder what new friends I will meet and wonder how I ever lived life without them?


What prayers will finally be answered? What new prayer requests will weigh heavily on my heart?

I wonder.


Life is so short. It is but a vapor. We don’t realize that on a day-to-day basis. We forget. We take it for granted. Unless we stop long enough to pause, think, ponder, and wonder….

Tuesday, December 28, 2010

Maybe We Weren't Meant To Remember

I heard a quote the other day that caused me to stop and ponder it. It was “Sometimes we weren’t meant to remember.”


I’d never really thought about that before. Being a writer and someone who is very sentimental; I love to remember as much about my life as I can. But maybe – just maybe – sometimes we weren’t meant to remember.


I think that sometimes maybe it’s better if we leave pain and hurt in the past where it belongs. Sometimes it’s better to let a friend, loved one, or relationship go.


We try to hold onto so much. Too much, maybe. Sometimes our lives would be better off without recalling certain things or people. Sometimes, maybe we’d heal quicker and be able to move on without holding onto so much; so tightly.


Our lives are but a vapor. We are here and before we know it, we are gone. The older I get, the more I see how quickly life flies by. It’s okay to forget. It’s okay to let some things go. In fact, maybe we need to let some things go.


Each moment of our lives can teach us something. Maybe one of the biggest lessons we can learn is how to let something sail away in the breeze never to be seen or felt again. Maybe we are better off, if we do.


Maybe.

Oh, how much of our bitter hearts and the darkness that falls over our eyes is only there because we hold on to something with such force and strength? We need to open our hands and let it go. Let it melt away and forget.


For sometimes forgetting is the best thing

Friday, December 24, 2010

Merry Christmas!

I'm taking the next two days to focus on my family and spend some time with them. One of my favorite things about this time of year is just being with those I love. Traditions are fun and great - and presents are cool - but it's people who mean the most.

Of course I do try to bring in the real reason we are celebrating and have it be a constant reminder in our home. We plan on watching "The Nativity" tonight to set the tone. 

How about you? How do you slow down to focus on what truly matters this time of year?




May you make special memories this Christmas, have lots of smiles, laughs, and hugs - and more moments filled with lavish love. For that is what HE gave us.

MERRY CHRISTMAS.

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

There Is So Much More

Do we model our faith for our children?


I read something that got me to thinking on this very subject. The author was talking about Christian teens today and how a lot of them believe that they are simply to do good things as a Christian; to be good. And the result? God will be good to them.


Wow. Is that what Christianity has been reduced to? Being good?


When I read the Bible – King David wasn’t always good. But he loved the Lord and desired to serve Him. Peter wasn’t always good either. There were countless men and women in the Bible who weren’t always “good.” And I just wonder how we’d respond if we were sifted as Job was. Would we say God was “good” to us?

I’m worried that our faith won’t translate well to the next generation because, in part, we haven’t lived it well. We haven’t exercised it or stretched it.


Faith is everything to me. Yet I know that a lot of times I talk to God from my heart and exercise my faith privately – from my heart. If I want my kids to see God working in my life (and theirs), I need to be more open about what He is doing and how He is working. I need to show them that I have faith in Him; even in the tough moments in life.


Sometimes answers from God take years. Sometimes things aren’t always “good.” Serving God is much deeper than that though. Much tougher. It takes day to day faith.

I want my kids to see what “living it out” really means. I want them to know that a Christian lives by faith and not by feeling or sight. It’s not a “tradition” but it’s a choice.

 
I pray I can be that kind of Godly example for them. So that they won’t reduce their faith to simply “being good” and they won’t minimize God to a deity who just helps them feel good and is good to them. For there is so much more.

Monday, December 20, 2010

In the Best Interest of Our Kids

What do you do when life is unfair to your kids?


Be sure to stop over at Kari Smalley Gibson's blog,  "My Crazy Adoption" today as I discuss this exact topic and share my thoughts.

Friday, December 17, 2010

Staying True to Who We Are

My first car was a pickup truck. It was a Chevy S-10 pickup. Red and white. The rearview mirror came in the glove box and I had to constantly re-glue it to the window. There was no air – which was fine in Oregon, but when I moved to Las Vegas – that was not something I enjoyed. Still… I loved that truck.



That truck was “me.”


I actually had a little Honda for a few weeks before the Chevy. It was a stick-shift. I wanted an automatic and I wanted a truck. The car was a good deal, so I gave in and got it. It was cute and in great shape. But it was not what I wanted. It was not “me.” So it only lasted a couple of weeks before we re-sold it. Then, my dad found my Chevy. MY Chevy. I was so happy.


That’s the way it is with our lives. Sometimes we give in and do things that are just not “us.” Whether it’s peer pressure or lack of patience, we decide to just go with something. But it’s wrong. It’s not God’s will for us and it’s not who we are. It’s all wrong. Just like my car. The thing itself may not be bad. It may be something that is very worthwhile or attractive. But it wasn’t meant for us.


Only when we wait and stay true to who we are, will we find that we are happy. Only when we stick with the desires and dreams that God has placed in us – only then will we find true satisfaction as we live out the calling that He has placed deep within us.


It doesn’t matter if everyone else likes cute little cars. If God created us to love trucks – only trucks will do. And it doesn’t matter if everyone else loves to run or speak or wear certain kinds of clothes and live certain lifestyles. If God didn’t create us that way, none of those things will work out for us. They won’t satisfy and we won’t flourish in those roles, lives, or positions.


We can be proud to be who we are. I love that I’m not like everyone else. I love how I was made. I don’t want to blend into a crowd, but I want to stand out. For that is how I know He intended it to be….

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

The Lost Ornament

Today, I wanted to share a little video message from my stepson, Garrett.

Sunday, December 12, 2010

Love Is a Gift

Gifts. Whether they are material gifts or gifts of our time, they are blessings and statements of how we value one another. When I make a meal for someone, whether it’s in my own home or because a new baby has been born or a loved one passed away; I do it out of love, caring, and a sense of empathy for what that individual is going through. I do it out of love.



When I give a little gift on someone’s birthday, Christmas, or just because… I do it out of love. I don’t expect anything in return. And yet sometimes I see that people have a hard time receiving gifts. They feel like they have to do something to reciprocate the gesture that was extended their way. They struggle with simply saying ‘thank you’ and feeling the love that was gifted their way with the gift. I’m not sure if it’s because they feel somehow insecure that they didn’t think to give a gift or if they don’t want to be a burden to the gift giver – but whatever it is, it hinders them from enjoying the true blessing of being loved on by someone else.


Love is a gift. In more ways than one. It is a gift of the heart but it’s also a gift in physical form too. Love pays for someone else’s meal from time to time. Love drops by a baked good “just because” they knew you liked it, or love sends a card in the mail. Love sometimes does simple things like offering to help with a project you’re working on, or helping take care of your kids. Love doesn’t expect a return on its investment. It simply loves because of the joy that it brings to everyone’s heart.


It feels good to love on each other. It feels good to make someone smile by the gifts of our heart or time. It feels good to take the burden off of someone else’s shoulders. After all, isn’t that what God has called us to do? To be there for each other and walk through life together? So why do we have this need to isolate ourselves and act like we don’t need anyone or anything? Why do we feel like if we accept anything from someone else that we will have to repay it? Why can’t we simply feel loved and be thankful for it?



Love is a gift. The next time it’s offered to you; recognize it for what it is. Recognize that someone is giving you the gift of love when they are offering to help out or when they give you a physical memento or even their time in your life. Don’t try to fight it – but be appreciate and thankful for it. Sure – somewhere down the line, you will have the opportunity to love on that someone back. But when that time comes, do it because you want to, not because you feel guilty or indebted in any way.


Love is a gift. A beautiful gift. Sometimes simple, sometimes lavish. But it is a gift just the same. And it never asks or expects anything in return. That’s what makes it so beautiful. Accept it. And feel the love that accompanied it, for everyone deserves to feel loved.