Hello ?

On my most recent visit to the in-laws; the boys and Dan were teaching the parents how to use the newest phone technology. It amazes me how quickly the younger generations pick up on all that you can do. It was during the discovery of the phones and their capabilities that Dan conference called his dad, mom, and our three sons.

I sat watching as the five were sitting in the same room and talking to one another on their phones, all five saying “hello?”. I was laughing at the silliness of it all when a thought occurred to me during this exchange.

They were laughing and enjoying being ‘connected’ to one another.

There is such joy in being connected to people. I personally know how easy it is to hermit away. I have been hurt and it is so much simpler in my own mind to hide away and not allow myself to be hurt or let down again. But then the moments of joy are never experienced when I allow myself to do this. There is such joy in laughing with a good friend, sharing together, praying together and being a support system to one another.

God can be our all, and meet all our needs, and one way he does this is by supplying us with companionship. Man was not meant to be an island all alone. Community is a very important part of living in joy.

One suggestion I do make from my life experiences; make sure the people you are giving your energy into are also supplying you with their energy as well. Unless God calls you to be light into a specific life your friendships should not be only one direction. When you find a friend that puts into your life as much as they take, hold on to them, feed that friendship and stay connected!

My friends, do not forsake fellowship with one another. Do not be a hermit and try to take everything on your own shoulders without the experience of letting another person share your load.

Stretch out of your comfort zone and be a good friend. It is very true that you will reap what you sow. If you sow into lives you will reap great rewards!

Today’s challenge : Be a good friend; send an encouraging note, make a phone call or share your heart with someone you can trust. Do not be a hermit.

Hebrews 10:24-25

And let us consider how we may spur one another on toward love and good deeds, not giving up meeting together, as some are in the habit of doing, but encouraging one another and all the more as you see the day approaching.

(NIV)

Whom shall we please?

It has been awhile since I have blogged. I went through a season of trying to be there and please people, then I went through a season of not caring and trying to please myself, and finally realized my own self needs to get out of the equation and I need to please only one.

Even though I receive a blessing when I please a friend or my hubby lifts me up with his praises when I have caused joy in Dans heart,  I realized anew how important it is to please God first and foremost in my life. We can never please the human fully, we will always fall short. I for one know how fully I can fail at pleasing everyone. I also know that I can never please my own self, I am always reminded of how human I am and that my own desires can change with the wind.  I can not seek after my own own desires and be fully blessed.

It is natural to want to please humans; we want to be seen as kind and friendly, or as the brave one, the smart one, the pretty one, the talented one, the best friend, or even the ‘rebel’ for those that it pleases.

I absolutely love when my people in my life are pleased with me. But when I stop and pause, the bigger question is, am I pleasing the Lord to the best of my abilities? Where am I applying the best of my heart? I know we are called to please God above man or self and I must stop and ask; ” am I doing that?”

I have had people ask me, “how do you know what is pleasing to the Lord?”

This my friend is answered only by seeking Him first. Spending time in prayer and getting to know the Lord through His word, in both your head and your heart and applying that word to your life.

You can not have fullness of joy if you are rushing around trying to please man ( this includes your own self desires.) The happiness or the joy will only last as long as the moment lasts. Then you are left with the silence and the consequences of doing things your own way. There is not a spiritual joy that you get the moment to revel in when you are doing things God’s way and you are blessed with HIS blessing on your life.

Seek FIRST the kingdom of God. Seek His will, His way and what would be pleasing to HIM. Then the life will reap the benefits of living in God’s outpouring joy!

Even when things don’t seem to be going right, if you are seeking Him first, your heart will be full. He is just good that way !

Challenge this day my friends: Seek to do that which pleases the LORD first

Proverbs 16:7- When a man’s way please the Lord, he makes even his enemies to be at peace with Him.

(NKJV)

It is time to make things tasty

I am working on controlling my tongue, anger, lonliness, self and depression. I am working on changing myself for the benefit of the Kingdom and those around me. I desire to walk in blessing rather than the curse of selfishness. In these character transformation moments, there are times I try to stamp down something that is ingrained in me.

I am finding in self discovery that there are areas in my personality that at times I want to stifle or erase from my being because I find it embarrassing or less than perfect. Very characteristics that God himself has placed inside of me that I am to cultivate, not disintegrate.

We are called to be the salt of the earth. I am to flavor the earth in just the way that GOd created me to. I have shared with a friend in the past that a thought struck me, there are many kinds of salt; sea salt, garlic salt, iodized salt, seasoning salt, or rock salt just to name a few.

We are to be flavorful and to season this earth with goodness. We are to not lose our flavor. But we can be original to our own design. He creates many flavors and personalities for His purpose. While I encourage myself to change for the Kingdom glory, I need to be mindful to not change the flavor he has made me. It is time I make the world around me tasty in the only way that I was created to do. I will NOT lose my saltiness.

Challenge this day my friend:  Discover your own original gifts and share them with the world, not losing your flavor but sprinkling all you come in contact with the Lords goodness. Do not stamp out what He has placed in you that is unique only to you.

Matthew 5:13-

“You are the salt of the earth. But if the salt looses it’s saltiness, how can it be made salty again? It is no longer good for anything, except to be thrown out and trampled underfoot.

(NIV)

Wake UP!

Listening to the annoying alarm clock sounds, I am reminded how important it is to wake up. With the constant buzzing in my ear, I desire to hit the snooze button of life often.

It is so tempting when life is at its most stressful and I am hurting emotionally or physically, to turn the snooze button on over and over again. Some symptoms in the midst of depression are; no motivation and wanting to sleep all the time, in essence, to slumber.

I know I just mentioned rest in my previous post. Let me assure you that finding a quiet moment to meditate and refresh your heart, is different from living in a life in constant snooze mode. Being inactive for no purpose is not going to be productive to you.

When battling depression or seeking a joy filled life we can not afford shutting our mind and emotions off to the life around us. We can not let our days to be stolen with a slumber of inactivity. Even though we ‘feel’ we have no motivation, or we may ‘feel’ our vision is gone, it does not mean that is reality. Sometimes the very action of being awake and pressing forward is enough to break the cycle. Each day that we strive for better and strive for more in our life makes it easier and easier to become our normal rather than our great effort.

I encourage you , embrace the new dawn. Wake up with a purpose to simply not let your day be stolen. Find a dream, a vision, or an activity that needs done and go boldly with the fact that you woke up and you can do it.

Challenge this day my friend: Start fresh and rejuvenate that which we once gave up on. Do not slumber, sleeping our lives away.

Proverbs 6: 10-11

A little sleep,

A little slumber,

A little folding of hands to rest-

and poverty will come upon you like a thief

and scarcity like an armed man.

(NIV)

Chocolate’s anyone?

When the boys were small they loved to play with play dough. I had been keeping them busy with a brand new color while Dan and a friend played a very intense Grand Turismo game session on the Playstation.

Our boys had come into the living room with their latest creation on a plate.
“You want some chocolate?” They asked Dan. Dan grabbed a piece and pretended to eat it.

They went over to our friend Mark. ” You want a chocolate?” they asked. Mark picked up a piece of play dough that resembled a piece of chocolate quite perfectly and popped it in his mouth, all the while his eyes never leaving the game. That is until the flavor of what he just put in his mouth began to sink into his brain.

The boys were as shocked as Mark when they realized that he ate their play dough.

How often do we take something in our lives that we think is going to be sweet and good and all that yumminess, only to find out it is bland and lifeless and leads to an upset stomach.

There are many counterfeits to the word of God. There are many ways we try to fill ourselves up to try and get a smidgen of joy. But even if I forget for a moment, I am brought back around that the only way to have the fullness of joy that leaves me daily stronger and healed, is through the Word of God. Knowing the Father through the Son. Tasting and seeing that the LORD  is good and taking refuge in Him.

Challenge this day my friend : Evaluate what you are tasting, even if it looks good, is it the real deal?

Pslam 34:8

Oh, taste and see that the Lord is good. Oh, the joys of those who take refuge in Him. ( New Living Translation )