Saturday mornings have always been my favorite time. Time for coffee, hanging out in PJ’s, watching cartoons with Jaxon, Facebooking, making pancakes, and more recently, blogging. It has been one week since I started this blog while I was on hold with American Airlines and watching a football game. And I have learned a few things this week.
1) Go do something. Give God something to bless.
2) When you do this, He will meet you there. You’ll be surprised.
3) Trust your instincts, the first thing that I type is usually the one that sounds best.
4) When trying to be a blessing to people, even if you do something silly, if you do it with your whole heart, you will succeed. And even if I just help one person with my writing, it’s worth it. The one person that read something I wrote this week and took a little nugget of truth away from it, that person was worth it. And for that person, I’m going to keep going.
5) Jesus has broad shoulders, He can carry your load if you let Him. Trust Him.
6) Don’t stress over the little stuff, don’t major on minors. Do what counts and do it well.
7) Fourth grade math is inexplicably hard.
And that’s all, folks! More learning next week!
Picture this, you’re walking through a busy airport. (I do this a lot.) You’ve got a rolling suitcase, a backpack, a purse, a computer bag, a heavy coat, a diaper bag, a stroller, a venti non-fat latte, a book, your boarding pass and your ID, a bottle of water, and a smile. At least that’s what I’ve been known to carry in recent history. All of a sudden, a very big, strong guy comes up to you with the kindest, gentlest eyes you’ve ever seen and says, “Please let me carry all of that for you, no charge.” And this was seriously the most trustworthy guy you’ve ever seen. What would you do?
Would you just hand over half of your stuff? Would you just let him carry one thing and then continue to struggle with the rest? What on earth are you thinking? Give it all to him, walk free and easy and sip your coffee in peace with this awesome dude walking next to you with all your stuff!
Well, that’s how I see Jesus when He tells me to cast all my cares on Him. I see Him as this huge, strong set of shoulders that can literally handle anything and everything, and I’m a fool if I don’t let Him help. I Peter 5:7 tells me to cast ALL my cares on Him because He cares for me. Why do we just cast half?
So many times we only cast half our cares on Him, we feel like we can take this one area of our lives and roll it off on His shoulders and trust Him to handle it, but for some reason we feel like we need to handle the rest by ourselves. And while we are all capable, strong people, there’s just no reason to try to handle all the situations of life in our own strength when His grace and help have already been provided for us! He is able, willing, and wants us to trust Him with all the cares in our lives. So don’t just cast half your cares on Him today; go ahead and cast it all.
Can I just say how grateful I am for Stouffer’s? I mean really, what full-time working mom can make it through a week without at least one meal born in the freezer? Or maybe two. If you can, more power to you.
I realized yesterday afternoon that I had not prepared a vegetable for my family in a week. Bad Mommy! So last night there was a big salad and a nice lasagna, which I managed to cook perfectly, thank you very much. The directions were very easy. Ha!
But in all seriousness, the nightly dinner battle is just one I have chosen not to fight. I’d like to say I do my grocery shopping every weekend and have a nice meal plan all laid out for the week, but that of course would be a big, fat lie and probably not going to happen in this lifetime. But I do what I can, I cook healthy meals when I can, I try out new recipes when I can, I (make Lynn) grill up a nice steak when I can, and I order pizza when I can. Oh yeah, and I go to the gym when I can. But that’s another conversation for another day. Today I choose to do what I can and not stress about what I can’t do. I choose to do what has to be done, and do it well, and the rest will still be there tomorrow.
This seems to be a running theme as I’ve been writing this blog. I’m probably just preaching to myself, (I’m definitely preaching to myself) but I keep coming back to this thought. Go do something. Maybe it’s because I’m guilty, like so many are, of waiting for God to move in some area of my life and He may be telling me to move. My father-in-law Terry Mize, who I respect so highly in ministry has always said that God is a good checker player; He waits on us to make a move and then He makes a corresponding move. Well, I was sitting in my Dad’s School of the Spirit class last night and he was talking about how Jesus went about doing good and healing all who were diseased. Right then it struck me, what can I do that’s good? What are my strengths? What do I have to contribute to humanity, to my family, to my friends, to my community?
What can you do that’s good? Go do it. What is your strength? Go do it. What do you excel at? Go do it. What can you do that would really help someone? Go do it. Do something! Be an instrument, a vessel. God gave each of us gifts and talents, what do you think He expected us to do with them?
I don’t believe He’s going to call every single person to the mission field to eat worms and run around with naked people, while there are those that are absolutely anointed to do it and I have the utmost admiration for them. But I believe He puts passions and desires in us to pursue what we’re good at, what we love, what brings us joy, what brings us fulfillment. If those are the desires of your heart, then go do them. Use the gifts and talents He’s given you to help someone, to make a difference. I’m not saying everyone is called to the ministry, although many make good arguments for that, I mean go do what you’re good at, in whatever field that is. Go do it with your whole heart, and you’ll bless people in the process. My grandfather says that his mama told him, obey God, stay little in your own eyes, and you’ll bless the world. Wise woman. Go bless the world.
Today is my 14th wedding anniversary; oh my stinkin’ heck! How did we make it this far? It’s much easier said than done. Choices and grace, God’s grace and mercy and the choices we made along the way. Choices to love each other even when we didn’t feel like it, choices to forgive each other for our mistakes, choices to go to God for direction instead of a sympathetic shoulder, and a million other choices along the way. Point being, they all add up to a marriage that lasts. It’s not a magic formula, it’s a choice. We choose to love each other, even when we don’t feel like it, especially when we don’t feel like it. In my experience, the choices that are the hardest to make are usually the ones that are the most important.
A favorite scripture of mine that has always been very effective at pushing the junk out of my brain is this: “Finally, brethren, whatever things are true, whatever things are noble, whatever things are just, whatever things are pure, whatever things are lovely, whatever things are of good report, if there is any virtue and if there is anything praiseworthy—meditate on these things.” (Philippians 4:8 NKJV)
It’s so easy to think the worst, to think the bad stuff, it just kind of comes naturally to me, unfortunately. I’ve always been a glass half empty kind of girl. But this really helped me, even if I just focused on one positive thing, at least it was something and it was a place to start. You’ve got to start somewhere, right?
I have a very busy day ahead of me, yes I should be getting started on this busy day instead of sitting on the couch in my PJ’s with my laptop and a bowl of cereal, but hey, this is where I am. And on this day three of my blog, I have absolutely nothing to say. Hopefully this won’t happen a lot. I don’t have illusions that I will have something entertaining and/or enlightening to say every day, but I’m hopeful that in all my posts there will be at least one thought that will help someone in some way, even if it’s just to bring a smile. Let’s face it, a daily smile is a good thing. Especially when we all are facing situations that most definitely do not make us smile.
So today, I’m smiling at my dog, who is grumpy. He watches me with these pitiful eyes hoping he’ll either get fed or walked, preferably both. I’m smiling because I will have no more gray hair after my 10 AM appointment. I’m smiling because I’m having lunch later with a new friend. I’m smiling because I get to take dinner to some dear friends who have a new baby. I’m smiling because I get to pick up my son from school and make sure he gets his homework done. I’m smiling because I keep brushing my hand against the touchpad on this laptop and lose my cursor and find gobbledygook in weird places. I’m smiling because I just attempted to spell gobbledygook. But mostly I’m smiling because this is the day that the Lord has made, and yes, I will rejoice, smile, and be glad in it.
OK, so here’s the deal. I started this blog last night and agonized about whether or not I was confident enough to put it out there. The bottom line is, I’m not. It’s silly, it’s narcissistic, and I’m pretty embarrassed at myself. BUT, here goes nothing. I am going to write my musings, as Jayne calls them, and just see what happens. I want to eventually write books so I might as well start somewhere. I put on Facebook yesterday that we should start where we are because it’s our only choice. So this is where I am and I’m starting. I’m putting my hand to the plow, I’m diving in, I’m giving God something to bless. I know He has things for me to do and say and I’m just getting myself in a position to start.
You know, God doesn’t give us the whole picture at one time, oh how I wish He would, but alas, that’s not the way He works, at least in my experience. The manna came from heaven every day, right? The Israelites were not allowed to store it up, they had to trust Him every day, and they had to walk outside and pick that manna up. So this is me picking up the manna and expecting that there will be more tomorrow.
Welcome to my first post. Wow, what a way to get the party started. Over coffee this morning with my husband of nearly 14 years, I decided I was going to start a blog. So here I am, dog asleep next to me, Texas Longhorns on the TV, muted of course, and on hold with American Airlines, all the while going to WordPress and starting a blog. Nifty, huh?
I chose this grassy, glorious theme because I had a thought. This gorgeous meadow overlooking the ocean is where I would like to be. It is idyllic, it is picturesque, it is serene, but it’s not where I am. It is not even close to where I am. I am home, on the couch, in Tulsa, Oklahoma, it’s evening, still 90 degrees outside, my hair is dirty and I have heartburn. This is reality. This is where I live.
I want to show people in my blog that I am real, that I am a real, live, woman. I am a wife, a Mom, a secretary, and a thousand other things, but sometimes, I actually have something insightful to say. I’ve only been on this road of life for 38 years, but when you were raised in and around ministry, that time is doubled, kind of like dog years, I’m really nearly 80!
Anyway, I hope you stop by to read every once in a while. I hope I can encourage you that you are going to make it, that you’re not alone in your situation, and that God is faithful.
CRITICAL UPDATE! AUGUST 2012
As you can see, after nearly 2 years of blogging, I finally figured out how to change my blog’s appearance. I am digging the new design at the top of my pages… so funky, so 2012… at least that’s what I’m telling myself.
But in the spirit of being the detail-oriented person that I am, I felt I had to address this very first post of mine because it mentions the grassy scene that was my blog cover picture for 2 years. Now the picture is gone and I didn’t want you, my awesome readers and friends, to think I was nuts. The end!
ANOTHER CRITICAL UPDATE! JULY 2014
Time for another change of blog design. Hope you like it!