Thursday, October 23, 2014

Our challenge

We are almost through with the basket of word lessons.
I have found this experience not only powerful but also challenging.
As a writer it is easy to write about what is familiar to you.
What is comfortable.
What is pressing on your heart for the day or
what the Lord is perhaps sharing with you.
It has stretched me to write about a word that is new.
It takes a lot of preparation, study and motivation to integrate it into a writing that makes sense.
I am finding this to be a wonderful learning process for me.
The next word we are exploring is:
Dictionary.com said:
it is overflowing fullness and benevolence as in
"abundance of the heart."
affluence or wealth as in "the enjoyment of abundance."
an extremely plentiful or over sufficient quantity or supply.
In the bible it is spoken of thirty three times both in the Old and the New testaments.
For the purpose of this writing I am only focusing on a few.
Luke 12:15: Then he (Jesus) said to them, "watch out!"
Be on your guard against all kinds of greed; 
life does not consist in an abundance of possessions."
For many of us we have never had to live in a situation of dire need.
We can wake up in our warm comfortable homes.
Then open dresser drawers stuffed with clothing or closets too full of things hanging for us to choose from.
After that we open our full refrigerators or pantries and we can always have choice because of our abundance.
I like it when Jesus said, "Watch out! be on guard".
Discontent breeds wrong thoughts and I often find myself
not satisfied
with the abundance of our stuff and I wish for more.
Rather than walking through the house and thanking God for providing
sometimes I complain.
I can go to the store and find abundant choices to put into my cart.
I can turn my television on and find abundant channels to choose from and still not find what I am wanting to watch.
What will it take for us to become grateful and thankful and even generous?
"The test of our progress is not whether we add more to the abundance of those who have much
it is whether we provide enough for those who have little."
Franklin D Roosevelt
"Abundance is not something we acquire.
It is something we tune into." Wayne Dyer
"Doing what you love is the cornerstone
of having abundance in your life" Wayne Dyer
On the spiritual side of this word:
But I, through the abundance of your steadfast love, 
will enter your house, 
I will bow down toward your holy temple in awe of you. Psalm 5:7
For their sake he remembered his covenant, and showed 
compassion according to the abundance of his steadfast love. 
Psalm 106:45
and I end with this prayer:
But as for me, my prayer to you, O Lord.
At an acceptable time, O God, in the abundance of your steadfast love, answer me. Psalm 69:13
Our challenge is to realize
the abundance of what we have been given
along with how much we have been forgiven and
the abundance of his powerful almighty love for us.

Tuesday, October 21, 2014

Basket of words continued

Returning to the basket of words after a small break.
The next word we are exploring today is LIGHT.

Dictionary.com said: Light: something that makes things visible.
Illuminating agent of radiance, daybreak or dawn.
To cause a face to brighten with joy.
"a smile lit up her face. Her presence lighted up the room."
To brighten with animation or joy.
To come to light, discover or reveal something
See the light and begin to accept or understand a point of view.
Light.
Seems like a simple word, yet the bible has 263 results for that word.
Significant isn't it?
Light. Jesus said: I am the light of the world whoever follows me 
will never walk in darkness, but will have the light of life. John  8:12 
That is a wonderful promise.
Have you ever walked into a room with no light? I have.
Until the light bulb gets replaced it is very scary and feels unsafe.
What looks 'good in the day time'... looks and feels different in the dark, you can't trust it or know something won't hurt you.
When I walk outside I cannot feel safe until I see a light to make the path more clear.
We can walk in the light or the dark. Our choice.
To see the light and begin to accept or understand a point of view
is not easy in fact it is challenging to our belief system.
Jesus said: For my yoke is easy and my burden is light. 
Matthew 11:30
In the same way, let your light shine before others, that they may see
your good deeds and glorify your father in heaven. Matthew 5:16
I do believe light is an important word.
In the Old Testament it is mentioned 174 times and in the New Testament 89 times.
If God thought it important enough to have it that many times in the word, then I must hold the light close and allow it to enter into my life and my heart.
"See to it, then that the light within you is not darkness." Luke 11:35
"The human spirit is the lamp of the Lord that shed's light on ones inmost being." Proverbs 20:27
"You have set our iniquities before you, our secret sins in the light of your presence." Psalm 90:8
"My heart pounds, my strength fails me, even the light has gone from my eyes." Psalm 38:10
"Light in a messenger's eyes brings joy to the heart, and good news gives health to the bones." Proverbs 15:30
As I read these I am reminded that God wants us to be in the light.
To be be bright with animation and joy.
Is there anyone you can be LIGHT to today?
"Light in a messenger's eyes
bring JOY to the heart,
and good news gives health to the bones."

Sunday, October 19, 2014

A photo for the day

This is a picture of our Columbia River, between the state of Oregon and the state of Washington.
Beautiful and majestic.
My friend Maxine took it and gave me permission to borrow  it.
Enjoy...  this beautiful view.

Tuesday, October 14, 2014

Play Dates with God by Laura Boggess

I have an online friend who just wrote a book.
It is challenging. Beautiful. Thought provoking and I want to share it with you so you can have your own copy to enjoy.
When I first began the process of recovery it was very clear to me
that I did not know how to relax or play.
Children who come from broken homes learn to become very responsible.
It was very difficult for me to learn to be free and spontaneous.
To not listen to the must do's inside my head.
I could not allow myself the down time to do nothing.
The rules robbed me of times of joy and freedom to play.
Playdates with God
Having a child like Faith in a grown up world.
Have you have ever watched children in a natural play setting?
There are no agenda's or must do's or have to's or worrisome thoughts on what needs to get done right now. By nature they run, they play, they are free to swing and laugh and find joy in the simple.
Have you ever had a child bring you a bug or a leaf?
As adults we shy away from that sort of wondering and amazement.
I remember going for a walk with a little one and when she stopped to watch a snail
 at first it was very annoying to me. 
Then I paused and breathed in and slowed down and realized
the snail and the unique 'look' of the way it was moving slowly and we watched in amazement how it was in no big hurry to get to the other side of the sidewalk.
We need to make time to slow down and playdates are good for us.
Sometimes my husband and I take time away from this busy life to just play and walk at the beach.

It is good to get away and walk and talk and enjoy each other.
This book is a very good challenge and a wonderful read. 
I encourage you to watch the video in the link provided and get your book https://www.heartsandmindsbooks.com/

Sunday, October 12, 2014

Friday word prompt: Care

Dictionary.com says to care is to give serious attention to,
to protect, to have grief or suffering.
To make provision or look out for, to be concerned with
and give special attention to, to watch over
and be responsible for, to be alert and protective over,
to have a state of mind where anxiety, worry or concern makes one troubled. To act on, attend to or deal with.
To Care:
It is putting your heart out there to be hurt.
To be walked on not of course in a literal way but in a emotional 'spiritual' kind of way.
If we care, we give something of ourselves to another.
If we say to someone, "I care for you."
We are saying to them there is connection, there is closeness and hope in the relationship.
Leo Buscaglia said:
"Too often we underestimate the power of touch,
a smile, a kind word, a listening ear, an honest compliment,
or the smallest act of caring, all of which have the potential
to turn a life around."
It takes effort and responsibility to care for something.
We cannot be selfish in this kind of 'process'.
If someone falls down and seems to be struggling or they are going down the wrong path, if we care for them,
we can say to them, "I care enough to not let you continue
this path you are on, you can do better and you have more potential."
Richard Paul Evans said:
"Sometimes it's not the strength
but the gentleness that cracks the hardest shells."
When I first began the therapy process with the last therapist who I worked with, he told me he sensed I needed gentleness and time, kindness and patience and because he 'cared' that was what we would work on in order for the therapy process to begin.
He knew it would take effort on his part to 'care enough' to earn my trust in him and let him help me.
When we care for someone, we choose the direction the relationship is going in a positive and healthy direction.
To care:
To have the state of mind where, if they are hurting, we hurt with them, and we hope for them to be safe and surrounded by people who will help them.
Wanting the best for others is all about the process of caring.
Let us challenge ourselves to do that process more often.

Thursday, October 9, 2014

Good Bye old girl

On October 7th at 11:00 am we took our old Emma Rose in to the vet's office for an assessment and for her to pass on and be in peace.
Her arthritis was very bad and she was becoming more uncomfortable when walking and laying down.
The pain pills were helping but we didn't want to increase the dosage given to her.
Her teeth were gone she had small nubs in her mouth so her food was moistened in order for her to eat.
Both of her eyes had cataract's in them she could only see things with 'blurred vision'.
Her heart was failing and she was breathing hard most of the time unless she fell into a deep sleep.
Then sometimes she would wet on herself because of the sleep or because she couldn't get up quick enough.
It was becoming more clear to us her dignity and quality of life was leaving and she was not in peace.
I had worked through the deep grief for a few months now.
Knowing this was coming I felt a deep inner peace.
I had given her the last 'bowl' of dog food with warm water.

 Then we let her walk around the yard and do her duties.
She then came over to the patio and laid down.
She seemed to know something or at least it felt like that to me.

She made it to a good age of 15 in fact the vet had her birthday as 11/98 I am not sure if that was accurate but we do know she was old and it was her time to go.
It was hard to say good-bye but I knew it was the right thing to do.
I felt many mixed feelings.
In the vets office at one point she crawled over and laid her head on my foot.
I struggle with 'knowing' we put her down.
Usually when an animal of ours needs that done they are very near death so it was just a 'little help' for them.
She might have had a few more months and she would have died at home in the yard if we had not 'taken her in.'
The vet said to us, "she is leaving with dignity".
That is all we wanted to hear.
Emma Rose you were our beautiful red Australian cattle dog, a grand queensland heeler.
 We will always love and miss you. 

Saturday, October 4, 2014

The word: Hope

Hope deferred makes the heart sick,
but when the desire is fulfilled, it is a tree of life. Proverbs 13:12
You shall be secure and feel confident because there is hope; yes,
you shall search about you, and you shall take your rest in safety.
Job 11:8
Hope: dictionary.com says to look forward to with desire,
to believe and to trust, the feeling that what is wanted can be had
or that events will turn out for the best.
Hope... just the sound of it brings about a thought of new change.
It is anticipation. It is belief. It is trust. It is waiting for something.
I like the concept of hope.
It is a positive thought.
It brings about peace and expectant feelings.
Hope is the thing with feathers 
that perches in the soul
and sings the tune without the words
and never stops at all. Emily Dickinson
It is my belief as we get older if we do not cling to a hope within us
we lose the capacity to believe in a faith and a truth and a life that is so beyond our imagination.
Have you ever hoped for something?
A child at Christmas time will hope for that 'special gift' requested.
Sometimes disappointment comes but that doesn't remove our hope.
It just shows us that maybe perhaps what we wanted wasn't good for us after all and something better will come to us.
Hope is powerful.
'Love ~ it always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres.'
1 Corinthians 13:7
Hope brings renewing and restoring and change.
It is a continual positive reinforcement.
I used to know a lady whose name was Hope: Esperanza in Spanish.
When she would come into the pharmacy where I worked.
I often told her it was pretty, and positive and I really liked it.
She would leave through the doors walking taller and more proud.
Hope... it is such a good word.
"Hope is the the sun, which, as we journey toward it,
casts the shadow of our burdens behind." Samuel Smiles
It is all about change, and movement and restoration.