Wednesday, November 25, 2015

What is Faith?


What is Faith?



Picture from Indian Jones and the last Crusades
Is it leaping blindly into the abyss, praying for an Indian Jones kind of moment? Or is it resting quietly in the knowledge that God is in control?

Faith to me is finding that balance between leaping and resting. I know God is in control and that our steps are ordered by Him....but I also know that sometimes he asks us to leap....to trust that His will is perfect, EVEN when what "we" can see is less then perfect.

There have been many times that I have cried out to God, begging Him to give me direction, only to be answered, and then not like what Gods path/direction looked like for my life.

He was asking me to take a leap, He knew that the path he had chose for me looked hard and a little unpleasant. But, he also knew where that path would lead me. He knew that the ups and downs on that path, were going to be hard, but that each one would make me stronger, more capable of handling similar situations  when I faced them again.

Some paths were hard for me to walk, and I would often cry out to God asking "why" he would let us walk through it...only to look back and see that without that trial, I wouldn't be who I am today! I wouldn't have overcome situations and learned from past mistakes.  I would have lost out on all the blessings that God had in store for me.

So....if God asks you to LEAP, take a deep breath and throw yourself into whatever He has planned for you, with the knowledge that He knows where this path will lead you. Then REST in that Faith.:)


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Tuesday, November 24, 2015

Give Thanks



http://www.andreareiser.com/category/quote/
 Feeling Thankful is a choice.

With everything that has gone on in the last few weeks, I have not been feeling very thankful, so this morning I decided to write out EVERYTHING I was thankful for. This way, when I am not feeling thankful,I can look back at my list and remember that no matter where I am, I have a reason to be thankful.

I am thankful for......

My Family- I truly have the best family ever. a beautiful daughter who makes my heart smile, and a hubby who loves me and puts up with my craziness! I am also blessed with 2 sisters and their families ( I have 5 nieces, and 2 nephews), and I have had the Best parents ever. Mom is still with us and for that I am extremely thankful, and my awesome Daddy has left this world, for his heavenly home.

My friends- The last few years I have been praying that God would send me friends, not just people I like, but people I love and want to spend time with.  He answered that prayer, and these friends  have been here for me over the past few weeks, when my world has been falling apart, and I will be forever thankful for their encouragement and prayers, crazy pictures, and phone calls. Love these ladies :)

My God- no matter where I am, He is there waiting for me!

My job- It allows me to be a stay at home homeschooling mama

My home- It may not be "ours" but I love it, and the neighborhood its in.

Our busted up car- lol I'm thankful it works and gets us from place to place.

Amazon-  I LOVE this website and I love that I can order stuff and not have to get out and face the crowds after a long day!


Essential Oils- they help keep my family healthy and keep this mama stress free and sane:) which makes everyone happy!

http://www.andreareiser.com/category/quote/
Books- I LOVE books, I love reading them to Olivia, I LOVE escaping to a quiet room and stepping into a different world with each new book I read. reading a good book brings me joy!



These are just a few things on my ever growing thankful list...just a reminder that I can be thankful in every season of my life, even the broken one we are in now.



www.journeyofworship.com




                                                  





Tuesday, November 17, 2015

"If Only"



 I was looking through an old file and this popped up. I wrote this a few years ago, when I was really struggling with what I was bringing into my home, and what I was allowing to take my focus away from my family, and more importantly, what I was allowing to take my focus off of God.

Have you ever looked at someone and wished you could be like them?  Or thought “if only I looked like them, made as much money, had a huge house, etc?"

I sure have!

I don’t need a lot of money, but I would LOVE to live in a big beautiful home. I love our home, but I  would prefer that it was a little bigger and nicer from time to time. 

I also have a very bad “habit” of wanting to live like those I see on my favorite tv shows. Deep in the recesses of my mind I know that it is all fiction, but how many of us have finished watching an episode of our favorite show, and thought “if only….?”

If only my hair looked that good..

If only I was that thin, I could....

If only my life looked like that...

If only...
  

I found it easier to escape into my fandom of choice, over facing the  realities of life....you know, the realities that were only there because I kept saying "if only".



                                  Fandom pic can be found at  http://fandom-fest.tumblr.com/


 I found myself wishing for someone who would take me away from my life and take me on adventures. I wanted that feeling of importance that came with a mad rush of adrenaline as I saved the day. I was consumed with finding meaning in what I did every day, that I soon began to resent my role as a mother, and wife. I was no longer satisfied with where God had placed me.

 I needed more.
                 
The sad thing about needing more is that when you get it,  it is NEVER enough!

It was a sad day when I realized that I no longer enjoyed being around my family and friends. I loved them, but I wanted to be involved in something so much more. I wanted to feel needed more than what I was, I wanted to be something so much more than what I was. I wanted to be rescued from the ordinary life that I had.


 What I had failed to realize was that, I didn’t have an ordinary life. My life was perfect the way it was, but I was so engrossed in a cloud of “if only” that I couldn’t see it.

 I was searching for something, when what I needed more than anything was to return to where I had been and start over. I needed to put down my fiction books, turn off the sci-fi shows, and bring out my Bible and pray more than ever before.

And if only I had listened to that small voice inside me begging me to take a step back...to reevaluate
..

“If only…..”

This is the part where I bare my heart to you. I became bitter. I became engrossed in my shows and my mythological books. I couldn’t leave them alone. I carried books with me just in case I had a few minutes  to myself that I could steal away and read a page or two. I would spend evenings in my room watching my shows while my family spent time together. I was secluding myself and I didn’t even realize it.

If only...

If only I had decided that my family was enough, that I was where God wanted me to be, that I had a purpose for his kingdom.

If only..

 Here is where the Lord stepped in, and took over something that had completely consumed my heart. 

I had a DREAM.....there was no audible spoken words, no bright shining light, an angel didn't visit me in the early morning hours while everyone was asleep....I simply had a dream. 

I had a dream where I was standing alone and I could hear someone whispering  "you will spend your time watching a timelord, but you wont spend time with Your Lord" 

That's it... the whole dream!

 I woke up and started writing. Writing has always been my outlet, and a way for me to process my feelings, and with this it was the same. What started as a few lines scratched out when I was still half asleep, turned into pages, I poured everything out, and that is where this post came from. 

I felt like I was given a second chance, that even though I had allowed my fandom (nothing wrong with being a fan girl, I just had a fangirl moment the other day,  I just need to keep it in moderation) to overtake and be placed above God and my family. That is where I was in the wrong, not because I loved a show, or enjoyed reading science fiction books, it was because of where I placed their value in my life.

I look back on those months and think of the time I wasted. Do I still love a good sci-fi show every now and then?  You better believe it, but I am also a lot pickier about what I watch, I set limits for myself, and I have taken the "guarding of my home" to heart. I don't want to let anything in that will do harm to my family, or let ideas/issues in that my daughter may hear or see. Try telling a 10 -year- old that it is ok to watch something, but not to do it...yeah it doesn't work that way. 

I may even seem overly conservative and protective in what I allow in, but I am this way because I have seen the other side! 

The ugly, unsatisfied, bitter, and lonely side.


Our world is often  filled with “if only” and we sometimes forget that we have a pretty awesome life as it is. It may be filled with struggles, but the lives we see on tv or read about in books are nothing compared to what we have. 

My life is not perfect, it never will be. But I have an awesome life. I'm blessed with a beautiful daughter, a Husband that loves me with all his heart, and puts up with my craziness, wonderful friends that bless us every day, and I have a God that gives Second Chances. 

I am blessed and that is enough:)

 "But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you". - Matthew 6:33
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Sunday, November 15, 2015

Hardest Question Ever




Why?

This has been the question that I have been struggling with for the last few weeks.

Why us?

Why again?

Why would you allow us to walk through this again, so soon.

WHY...Why....why...

every night, I lay in bed, the house dark and silent, and ask this question over and over again.

and every night I drift off to sleep without an answer.

or at least, not the answer I want to hear.

My mother gave me a scripture that someone gave her...not going to lie I was expecting a "pick up your bed and walk" kind of scripture.

Instead I opened her very loved bible to Hebrews 10:35 and read.

"Cast not away therefore your confidence, which hath great recompence of reward"

I looked up in to my moms smiling face and wanted to cry.

This scripture said nothing of healing!! 

My Mom just smiled and said "Its not about my healing, its about my reward, and what I have to look forward to."

I hope that one day I can have her Peace. The peace that says its all going to be OK, no matter what the outcome. The peace that covers you, when you need it the most. The Peace that gives you REST.
 
I have woken up to a painful memory that I never wanted to revisit. I am worn, tired, weak, and my heart is hurting.

Seeing someone I love going through this again....I don't believe the saying " God never gives you more then you can handle"  I think that we are given so much more then our hearts can handle, and it breaks us. it shatters our hearts, so that we can be put back together, stronger and better by Him. 

My heart was mending, and now I find It being broken again, I look at my family, and through  the smiles, I see tears in their eyes, hear the sobs being held back, and the smile that wavers just enough, for me to know that they are struggling, just like me.  

It will be hard, there will be tears and we will feel overwhelmed and defeated, but we will also be mended. 

Not today, or tomorrow, maybe not for along time, but our hearts will be mended.



https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zulKcYItKIA















 




Thursday, November 12, 2015

Today :)


Our day started off like any other day.....me rolling out of bed as my dear husband yelling "get out of bed, I'm going to be late for work!"

As I run to my daughters room, throwing clothes on and searching for my keys at the same time, I realize that I can only find one shoe....seriously people, how on earth does a 35 year old lose one shoe!!! isn't that something a toddler does???

we finally make it out the door and into the car (with me barefoot) and drop the hubby off for work with 3 minutes to spare ( yay), make my way home and rush around and start to get my daughter dressed and ready for the day!

We were supposed to be out the door by 9am, and on our way to see my mom  in St. Peters, HOWEVER......9am comes and goes,

9:15.....

9:20.....

9:30 and we are finally walking out the door!!


In the rush of sleeping late, and running around like a mad women, chasing her little crazy chick around the house, I forgot to feed us......Thank God for Mcdonalds!!!

Its funny how crazy mornings like this can either derail your whole day or make you thankful for everything around you!

We had 2 hours to drive, so instead of being stressed and freaking out because I was running late, I decided to make the best of our morning, so I turned up  Francesca Battistelli and we started singing at the top of our lungs!!

We laughed and goofed off the whole way there, I'm sure we were a sight to see, dancing and making goofy faces to all the cars passing.


Just by making the decision to not care how my day started, and to make the best of it, we completely turned our day around. We had a great visit with my mom and sister and her family, we made some great memories and had a lots  of fun.

I could have let my stressful morning make my whole day stressed, but I chose to change my attitude and therefore I changed the outcome of our day, and if your like me, If your stressed then those you love are stressed out as well. 

Making an effort to  look at the world and everyone and thing around me,and make the most of every moment (even when you are in a crazy rush) can be the biggest game changer in your life. It  makes you pause and be thankful for each and everything.

Today I was thankful for little girl giggles, waving at the construction workers,  impromptu periscopes about traffic, holding my daughters hand as we drove across a bridge, and most importantly spending quality time with my daughter!

Things can drive us crazy, but it doesn't have to make us crazy :)

Enjoy the moments you are in, they are worth your full attention!




Tuesday, November 10, 2015

Grief

Grief comes in stages.....denial, anger, bargaining, depression, and acceptance.

Seems like there would be a lot more for something that impacts our life so much, but no, there are only five stages.

When my father passed away (2 years in December) I started with denial, skipped anger (that came later), and went straight to bargaining.

I prayed...I BEGGED...and I bargained with God to save my father.

As the days we spent in the ICU turned to weeks, and my fathers pain increased, we knew that he was only going to be with us a little while longer.

I knew what was coming,That he was dying, and that it was what was best for him, but I never accepted that I knew that!

It felt so wrong to say "hes going to a better place" or "I know its his time".

It felt like I was giving up on him, no longer praying for his healing, but that God would ease his pain and take him gently to the other side.

I felt like I was abandoning  him.

Not that he was alone, my father was surrounded by those he loved, but that we were now waiting for him to pass, instead of encouraging him to fight, to live for us.

 We were telling him it was OK to let go, to be at peace....and I think that is when my anger surfaced. I really wasn't angry at those around me, I was angry at myself. I wanted to grab my father and tell him to fight, not because he could, but because selfishly, I  wanted him to stay here with us.

I wanted (still want) to see him, to pick up the phone and call him, to hear his laughter fill the room and see his face and ears turn bright red, because something  we said had cracked him up.

I wanted him to be at our daughter's birthdays, to hug her and call her "Liver juices", I wanted her to grow up knowing him the way I had.

I wanted my daddy to always be here. Nothing will ever change that. I still pick up the phone to call him, only to be punched in the gut with that overwhelming feeling of grief.

I was told not to be angry, but to be honest, with out my anger I wouldn't have been able to process some of my grief. 

It allowed me me to process the feelings I had about "leaving" or "abandoning" my father.

It allowed me to work through the fact that It wasn't my fault that he passed, nothing I could have said or done, would have "made" him stay. 

It was his time, and letting him go peacefully, was what was best for him. He never wanted to be hooked up to machines, He wanted to be surrounded by his family and loved right up to the end, and that is what he had.

He was ready, Ready to go home, to receive his reward, and after almost 2 years, I  have finally accepted that.

I still miss him everyday.

I still cry myself to sleep.

I still want to call him and ask "what are you up to" and hear "oh, about six foot"(lol every time).

I still want just one more hug from him.  

I still love him.

That will never change....but I have learned to cope, to not be angry, and above all to trust that this was Gods will, and his will is perfect. 


Wednesday, November 4, 2015

Between the Blinks



I blinked….that’s  all I did, nothing special……just a blink.

And 10 years were GONE!

My baby who was so small and helpless is now a beautiful little girl, so curious about the world around her.

Wanting to try everything (except food) new! She wants to explore, to help others, to be something great!

And all I want her to do, is sit on my lap and let me hold her for just one minute longer, to whisper I love you and hear her sweet voice say it back to me.

I want to re-watch every moment of her life…to be able to see her learn to walk, hear her 1st words again, to just be able to recapture her early years!

While I know that what I want is unattainable, I am realizing that it will happen again all too soon.

 I will blink and she will be graduating high school, learning to drive, finding love, getting married, and having her own family.

 It’s all just a Blink away!

I can’t change it, no matter how hard I try.

What I can change is what I do between the blinks! I can make memories that will last a life time. Memories that she will share with her children just like I share with her about my mom and dad. Memories filled with laughter and love. Memories filled with family dinners and game nights. Memories of spending time at our church as a family! Memories that remind her that no matter where she is she is loved.

That’s all I can do, it is my greatest responsibility, my calling, because I am a MOM :)