Posted in Faith

January 13 – When God Shows Up ~ Reblogged


This is a blog I follow and dearly love to read. This post has really stuck with me this morning and I just wanted to share it, for anyone who isn’t a follower… you might soon be  🙂

I post this with the prayer that God will invade your moments as well. Be blessed today, friends!

 

Have you ever had one of those moments? Have you ever been walking down the street when something… opens up a profound spiritual truth to you? It can happen. Anytime. Anywhere.

Source: January 13 – When God Shows Up

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Posted in Encouragement

5 Rules You Should Never Break


There are some rules you should make for yourself. Not goals, not bucket lists and certainly not promises. Rules. Goals are to be reached, bucket lists get checked off and promises – whether we want them to or not – do get broken.

But rules…they’re different.

There are rules for just about everything. You have rules in school, rules in the workplace and rules in many of the places you frequent such as doctors offices and grocery stores. They may not be outlined by a sign on the wall, but when you go to the doctor, you know you need to sign in and wait your turn. At the grocery, you shop for your items, find a lane, check out and pay.

Rules are well known and usually respected. Merriarm-Webster defines “rule” like so: a prescribed guide for conduct or action or an accepted procedure, custom, or habit. Words like “guide” and “habit” tell us it’s something that, once designed and laid out, it isn’t usually deviated from.

So what are these rules? I have a few that everyone should adhere to, and if we did, what a world we would live in!

  1. Always be respectful. As my Mother always told me, it doesn’t cost a dime and it pays you back in the long run. You never know another person’s story anyway…they might be going through something you know nothing about, so be nice. It’s not nearly as hard to put into practice as it is to ponder.
  2. Take insults with a grain of salt. They usually aren’t true, and in such case, they have no hold over you. People will stoop to insults for many reasons including jealousy, anger and a general feeling of worthlessness, and you might not know the reasons for any of them. Do not give them the satisfaction of seeing you brought to the low level they are at. It’s just not worth it.
  3. Give, whenever you are able. I know that we live in a world where scams and liars flourish, but there are those who genuinely have needs that we can meet, and if we’re able, we certainly should. What about that neighbor that has been laid off and might not be able to afford to buy this week’s groceries? Or maybe they could use some help with the rent? Every little bit helps and if you aren’t comfortable giving money, then go and buy the food yourself and drop it off. Remember that 2 Corinthians 9:7 says, Every man according as he purposeth in his heart, so let him give; not grudgingly, or of necessity: for God loveth a cheerful giver. 
  4. Don’t be afraid to cry. I spent a good many years of my life not allowing myself to cry, for any reason, and I’m pretty sure it did more harm than good. It can make you dry, bitter and cause you to seal off your emotions to the point that you just don’t care about anything, or anyone, including yourself. And that is certainly no way to be! And don’t be tricked into thinking it’s a sign of weakness…quite the contrary. It shows you’re strong enough to allow yourself to really feel. And that’s hard to do sometimes. But we have to remember, that sorrow doesn’t last forever. Jeremiah 31:13 reminds us: Then shall the virgin rejoice in the dance, both young men and old together: for I will turn their mourning into joy, and will comfort them, and make them rejoice from their sorrow.
  5. Always stand up for what is right. Edmund Burke is quoted as saying “The only thing necessary for the triumph of evil is for good men to do nothing.” That is still true today. However, I’m not saying to attack people where they are, especially if they are lost. There is a way which seemeth right unto a man, but the end thereof are the ways of death, says Proverbs 14:12. It is the very heart and flesh of the human to mess things up, and there are some things that simply cannot be condoned, but prayerfully consider any kind of open attack against another for what you consider right.

I’m sure there are probably many more rules that could go on this list, this just happens to be a few of the ones on my mind most recently. Feel free to copy if you wish.

Posted in Schooling

Sometimes, Homeschool Is Hard


There are days when homeschooling a teenage girl can be really rough.

On BOTH of us!

Some days are great. We get up on time, get right into the day and sail smoothly through the days lessons and sometimes even get in a bit more than we were bargaining for.

We don’t ever have to worry about snow days or weather delays  and we don’t take trivial days off for “professional development”…and since we don’t have those, we can actually finish the school year a little earlier than public school.

Those days are great. But they aren’t all like that.

Some days, one or both of us feel like crap. You know, girls get that way more often than guys anyway <wink wink>. And on those days, we just can’t help it. Things aren’t going to go well but we have to trudge through anyway.

Some days I feel like a complete loser, like nothing I do or say comes out right and there’s always the looming question, “Was this really the right decision for her?”

I know that it was, deep in my heart, and even at the suggestion of her therapist, so really, it IS the best decision.

Then there are days when she has a worse day than me. Maybe she failed a test or a quiz, or maybe she didn’t understand the information being taught. And she’s so hard on herself. There have been tears…on both sides.

It’s on those days that she gets really upset that I wish I could just let her see herself through my eyes, just one time, for just a few minutes. On those days, I wish I could link her heart to mine and feel it break for her the way it does when she’s sad. On those days, I wish I could scoop her into my arms like I did when she was so young and just make it all better.

But I can’t. No matter how much I wish and hope, I know I can’t.

But I tell her anyway. I try to give her the guidance that she needs to see that it isn’t as bad as it feels in the moment.

But…

I remember being 15. I remember being harder on myself than anyone else ever could. I remember the expectations I had of myself, even though I didn’t think I could live up to them.

Oh how I remember.

And I try to let that be a guide for me in talking to her. But then…I didn’t listen to my mother at that age either. I wish I had, it would have saved me so much heartache.

Hind sight IS 20/20, after all, right? That’s where all those songs come into play that have lyrics like, “If I’d only known then what I know now…”

Man, it stinks to know what they’re going through all the while knowing that nothing you say will really stick until later in life.

But maybe that’s why we say it anyway. Because someday, it hopefully will stick. Maybe someday it will come in handy. It sure is better than not saying anything at all.

And so, we keep going, day after day. She SO smart, and I know that she will finish her high school years with top grades.

I know, because I did, and she’s waaaaay smarter than I was. She doesn’t know it yet, but she is, and she will know it one day. She’s modest to the point that, maybe to her, it would seem arrogant to believe in her worth. But, until she’s able to, I’m going to believe in her enough for the both of us.

She’s the gift that God gave to me and I pray that I can do half the job, just HALF THE JOB, that I want to do in my heart.

Still…sometimes homeschool is hard on both of us.

Posted in Musings, Uncategorized

Choose, This Day, Whom You Will Serve


As much as I try to shield myself from all the mess from news and media outlets, I have found it simply impossible so long as I am a part of social media of any type.

At one point, I was so disgusted that I deleted several of my accounts, only to find that I missed the good stuff as much as I hated the bad. Social media is a great way to keep in touch with distant family and friends, especially since I am somewhat hearing impaired and can’t use the phone as much as I used to.

So I came back, trying to make a concerted effort not to subscribe to anything that broadcast all of that stuff. But still, it can find its way back on my screen, even by those who are actually meaning well.

You might be wondering what I’m talking about. Well, let me give you a few examples of the stuff I have seen recently that simply turns my stomach…

Most recently, it was the young boy who was kidnapped and tortured by, I believe, four young people who not only put it on Facebook live, but were content to shout racial slurs and other demeaning things. It comes in as a second rate factor TO ME that race was apparently an issue for this group. I have never been one to see color, only another human that Jesus died for, same as the rest of us.

The young boy who was kidnapped was white, and the attackers were black, yet this particular incident has yet to be construed as a “hate crime”. I’m sure if the tables were turned, it would CERTAINLY be a hate crime, as shouting “F*** black people” is generally frowned upon by this society.

Was it considered a “payback” for something? Even if that is an excuse, it’s a very poor one in my opinion, as I highly doubt this boy did anything to deserve the caliber of treatment he received. No human should be put through that kind of treatment, at all, period, regardless of color or anything else. It is a downright shame that we have this level of human capability at all.

We are suppose to love one another! What happened to that? As far gone as the rest of the Christian ideology that seems to escape people these days, apparently. We have traded humanity for something else, and I’m not even sure that I want to be able to figure it out.

Another story that made social media news, though not nearly to the caliber of the other incident, is the fact that in France, all children with Down Syndrome have been banned from smiling and from appearing on public television. Now, I may have the story slightly off, as I’ve heard that they were banned from smiling anywhere in public, and then I’ve heard that it was only banned on television.

Either way, how have we reached a place where it is humanly acceptable to ban another human being from smiling?! Their reasoning? That it would make those who had aborted disabled “fetuses” feel bad, as if to say that if the child had been allowed to be born, it would have actually been human after all, with the ability to feel and function and – God forbid – even SMILE!

It absolutely hurts my heart to even talk about it, but I’m appalled at the fact that it hasn’t been already. At least, not that has come in front of my own eyes. Lord knows the media wouldn’t report on the stupidity and complete lack of any kind of values at all that it takes to put these situations into actual being.

Another little known story is the fact that it has been found that the flu vaccine can cause those who have received donor organs to reject the donor organ. I guess it’s common knowledge that for either donor or recipient, both have to be up to date on all vaccinations before the transplant can be done. However, even though there are scientific studies backing the danger of vaccines in such situations, they still demand the vaccines, nonetheless.

Does that make any sense to you? Ah, well, that IS an age-old debate, though, isn’t it? I digress from going any further with that.

So anyway, that’s my little piece for today. My prayer closet seems to stay busy these days, not only for myself and my family and friends, but for all those who are being harmed, degraded and murdered daily in the name of not casting offense.

I wonder what would happen if we turned the tables? What if, instead of passing around stories of injustice, sadness and despair, we passed around stories of good news, even the good news of the Gospel? What if we made a real effort to not put a stumbling block in anyone’s way, but rather chose to pay it forward with everything we do on social media?

Wouldn’t it do your heart good to see more of that?

Don’t get me wrong, I know that injustices will still go on. As long as there is breath on this earth, there will be evil people, doing evil things, even the Bible tells us that. But do we have to give these stories wings? I don’t. I won’t. I refuse to be a part of that system of thinking. It isn’t as if anything is going to change because it gets shared on social media. If nothing else, the election should have taught us that much!

Instead, I will go on sharing what I share and attempting to be kind to everyone that it is in my power to be kind to. Maybe at least one person will smile or know that they are loved and valued because of something I’ve said. That’s my prayer anyway.

For if ye love them which love you, what reward have ye? do not even the publicans the same?
Posted in Musings

The Winter Chill


We are in what feels like the throes of winter. The nights here have been in the single digit numbers for a couple of nights now and tonight we have a wind advisory. Winds will exceed 50 miles per hour, so I’d say the wind chill is really going to hit us hard tonight. I don’t mind too much, as we run a kerosene heater to keep our bedrooms nice and warm and leave the furnace to just help out as needed, which isn’t much, thank goodness.

All in all though, this winter hasn’t been too bad. We have been having dinner parties every couple of weeks or so, so that we and our friends would have something to do through the cold season. Being in a band, our friends are usually with us at every show, but as most of our shows are outdoor venues, we often don’t have a lot of bookings through the cold weather months. So we’ve been doing this instead.

And it has been awesome.

We have had friends come from out of state to drop by and jam with us, family has come by and spent lots of time, the kids have had their friends over and there’s always something for them to do. Our son, who recently started playing drums in addition to guitar, has really made some impressive changes on the kit and he’s gotten some great advice from the drummers who have been here.

I just feel so blessed to have everyone around, it’s just beyond words. And just when I thought that I had made all the friends in life that I was going to, along comes my cousin with his girlfriend, and I’m happy to say that I’ve added to those ranks. It’s been wonderful.

I guess this post has no real point other than to say that these get togethers are like the flower seed waiting for spring. There is still life to be had, even when things so bleak and cold. Just a little effort to put together a bit of entertainment for everyone has, I think, helped fend off the cabin fever for this year, all while excitement builds for the warmer weather, camping and fishing trips, horseback riding, bike rallies and so much more that we know are coming. We might not all be together for all of that, but at least we’ve had a great time so far this winter, a time when most everything comes to a halt.

I hope that everyone else is making through the weather as well. God Bless!

Posted in Musings

Happy New Year!


Well, the New Year has arrived and with it, a plethora of resolutions, possibilities and so much more! While I am not much on resolutions myself, I do have some plans that I intend to implement with the hopes that they will be prosperous for myself and my family.

As the old saying goes, “There’s nothin’ to it but to do it!”

So here goes nothing!

I am just two months away from having been a serious freelance writer for an entire year. Of course, my life has pretty much hinged on writing my whole life, however, last year I took the dive and quit my day job to give all my time to writing. I had other reasons for working from home as well, but overall, it’s been the most rewarding choice I’ve ever made. It has been so beneficial, across the board, that I could never go back to the way things were.

I guess the thing that has made the jump so much easier is the fact that my husband supports me 100%. It was a big worry of mine, and he had some serious doubts that it was a legitimate source of income, so embarking on the journey took a huge leap of faith. But it has been paying off. No, it didn’t make me an overnight financial success, and we still struggle from time to time, but that is a phase that every self employed person goes through, I’m sure. There ARE tough and lean times, but knowing that my husband is there to support and encourage me makes it so much easier. I thank God for him EVERY SINGLE DAY!

I hope that the New Year is packed full of hope and meaningful changes for every one of you. Remember that the Bible tells us, His mercies are new every morning (Lamentations 3:22-24). So should you happen to stumble and fall short of your own goals, do NOT let that tear you down. Set more daily, short term goals than long term ones and you will find yourself to be much happier and much more successful for it.

And most of all, remember to be thankful to the One that brings you through it all  ❤   🙂

Posted in Faith

My #1 Resolution


This year, I have one resolution that I pray permeates every thought, word and deed of my life. It’s more than just a resolution for this year though, as I want it to be my very life, who I am and what people think about when they think about me.

To serve God and let my everything be a witness for His goodness, His mercy, His Truth, His faithfulness and His love for us.

When I think about my witness for God, I often think about a story I heard one time. Or rather, a barrage of questions that seemed like a story. The author prefaced the piece with, “What if you treated your Bible like your cell phone?”

Wow! What a concept, right?

So what if YOU treated your Bible like your cell phone? How would it change your life? Just think about it for a minute…

If you grabbed your Bible as your first act when getting out of bed, would it set your thought pattern for the day? You would spend the first thirty minutes or so, flipping through the pages, waiting to see if anything popped out at you, like it normally does with Facebook, Instagram or Twitter. And, like your email, what if you spent another half hour or so praying, the original form of communication, to our Father?

How would your life change if you got to the car and realized you didn’t have your Bible? If you’re treating it like your cell phone, you’d stop in your tracks and head back inside to retrieve it. What about the various times during the day that you spend flipping through your phone? What if you spent those times in the grocery line, in the waiting room at the doctor or while stopped at a traffic light dedicating the same amount of time to reading the Word that you always give your phone throughout the day?

How about when you get home? Have you ever held up a finger to shush a parent or child, with a “Give me just a minute,” while reading the Word like you have while looking at your phone? Or have you ever thought to yourself, “Just another 5 minutes of this game and I’ll head in the kitchen to make supper,”?

Can you imagine?

It’s almost a crazy thought, isn’t it? That we would feel as attached to our Bibles as we normally are to our phones. But that’s how I want to be. I want to be so crazy about knowing what God wants for my life, that I immerse myself, throughout my whole day, with His Word and Will for my life.

How much more important is our eternal life, than whatever could possibly be in that phone? We WILL spend eternity somehow, somewhere. If I am wrong, and there is no God, no Heaven and no afterlife of which to speak, then I still will not have wasted my life, because the tenets of true Christian faith and good.

But, my God, my God, if I were to be living like there is no God and come to the end of my life to find that there IS, then there will be no end to the regret, no end to the sorrow and no end to the eternity I would spend without Him.

I’m just not willing to chance it! And I pray you don’t spend another minute taking that chance, either. Give Him your life today! Because you aren’t promised another tomorrow!