Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Happy Thanksgiving!

I want to wish each of you a wonderful holiday. Look up and thank our God for His provision in good times and bad.

And thank you for reading my blog. It means the world to me to have someone pop in and read my scribbling!

If you visit consistently, you've probably noticed my lack of consistency. Well, there is a reason. I am trying to put together a website and it takes a lot of tinkering and dreaming and planning. It also takes enormous self control to not throw the computer against the wall at times. :0)

So please be patient and give me a wee bit of grace for my lack of consistent posts.

Happy Thanksgiving!

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

It's Time to take my Health Issues Seriously!

A few weeks ago, I went to my doctor for a complete physical. A week later, I sat in the doctor's office conference room to go over my notebook with him. Yes, notebook. It was a complete physical including all my blood cell levels, the hormone levels and of course, cholesterol.

My trigliceride level, the bad cholesterol, is off the chart. Basically, I'm one foot out of the grave. Although I can joke about it, the seriousness of this issue made a huge imprint.

That afternoon, I tickled Noah and we were laughing and laughing. It occured to me that I may never see his wedding or hold his kids. Ouch. It is time! Time for me to seriously take my health issues seriously!! Seriously.

But how? I've tried every diet known to mankind. Okay, almost. But it seems like every one.

First of all, I have to give God my will. Basically I have to make the decision every day to surrender. Throw up my hands, wave the white flag and stop fighting. My spoiled brat ways of "I am going to eat this because I WANT to eat this must stop.

But I need help! Enter a nutritionist and a counselor. By combining their advice to me, I have begun a eating program that is doable and realistic.

See, I'm an all or nothing gal. This has sabatoged every single one of my diets. If I don't do it perfectly, well then, have a pint of ice cream.:0)

No more. Another weapon I've used against myself is self doubt which becomes self fulfilling. The belief that "This really won't work, because I've never been able to lose weight and get healthy before," is imbedded in me because of the past. So I have to combat that lie. Constantly.

Change is difficult. Change takes purposeful effort. Change takes time.

And it is time.

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Soul Food!

Today at my writer's group, Words for the Journey Christian Writers Guild, our leader said something profound. Michele Cushatt has a habit of doing that. She talked about taking breaks from the busy-ness of life to refresh ourselves.

"Take time to take care of your soul. Don't just let it be. Feed it."

Thanks, Michele.

It is easy for me to be lazy. Unfortunately, I don't have to think about being lazy. Just comes naturally. But being lazy, sitting around playing stupid computer games or watching TV is not necessarily taking care of my soul. It's letting it be.

To take care of my soul is to nurture it, like I would my child. I make sure Noah is well fed and clothed. But I also see to it that he has opportunities for joy, for challenge, for adventure, for peace.

So do I do the same for my soul? Do you?

I took a little time today and decided to purposely look for ways to give my soul opportunites for joy, for challenge, for adventure and for peace.

The holidays are coming. Busy-ness will be a constant temptation. I encourage you as I encourage myself to take time for our souls. Prepare a banquet for yourself, rich in delicious moments.

This year let's feed our souls, instead of feeding them to the tyranny of the clock.

Thursday, November 05, 2009

Ivanka Trump's Wisdom. Seriously.

I watch The View. I will now pause for booing and clapping, depending on your view of The View. I like it, occasionally. Deal with that.

This past week Ivanka Trump and her mom were on talking about Ivanka’s wedding and new book. During the interview Ivanka said something that affected me profoundly.

Pause for “Seriously. Ivanka Trump.” and “Yeah, right.”

Barbara Walters asked what it was like to go through the divorce of her parents and all of the awful press during that time. Ivanka’s response was something near “I think if that hadn’t have happened to me, my life would’ve been too easy. I was very privileged so dealing with all the pain of that time helped me grow character.”

What wonderful perspective. How fabulous to see wisdom come from one who is young. Younger than me, at least.

So I’ve started to list (in my mind, but I may do it on paper) the awful periods of me life. Then I say, If
hadn’t have happened, my life would have been too easy. I apply this idea to the fact that God is growing and molding me. Pain is a great teacher.

To further the thought, I considered my son. I would love it if one day he said “If that hadn’t happened, my life would have been too easy.”

But am I taking away that possibility by trying to rescue him? Sometimes I take care of life for Noah so he won’t be bothered. When I do this I am stealing his chance to go through difficulties. And he NEEDS to experience some kind of pain. I don’t wish that on him, but if I don’t allow it, how will he grow and learn perseverance? How will he practice looking to God for help if Mom is trying to save the day every time?

Do you ever look at the difficult times as gifts from God? Do you ever stand in the way of your kids’ growth through pain?

Who’d a thunk it? Ivanka Trump let me to the throne of God's wisdom.

Pause for “Sweet!”

Tuesday, November 03, 2009

Mind Your Own Business!

"Therefore, since we have been justified through faith, we are at peace with God through Jesus Christ our Lord." Romans 5:1

Are you at peace with God? If you're not, you may relate to how this hamster feels. Without peace, a caged life is ours. God wants to unlock our cages and let us live in freedom. But how?

According to this verse, all it takes to be at peace with Him is to have faith in Jesus. That's it. Simple.

Then why is being at peace with God so difficult?

Enter guilt and judgement.

God has much more grace for us than we have for ourselves. Guilt for not being a "perfect Christian" (which is completely impossible anyway,) attacks us when we let our guards down. The enemy wants us to get our eyes off God and onto our own measly efforts to please. Guilt interferes with peace because it offers up a litany of reasons why we will never be good enough. Ergo, peace flys away.

Judgement interferes with peace because it takes our eyes off God and onto others. "She shouldn't be doing that." "I can't believe she let her son see that movie." At the root of judgement is comparison. Comparison in Christianity is futile. We are each individuals with individual strengths and weaknesses.

My mother used to tell me often to "Mind your own business." If she was alive today to see how our society loves to get in each others' business, she would be disgusted. From reality shows to talk shows, from open courts to blogs and facebook, our society has flung itself into the business of knowing other people's business.

The energy expended in looking around leaves less energy for looking up to God.

So I've started the mantra with Noah. "Mind your own business, Noah."

See, I know that if he learns early to "let it go" when he sees other sins, he will experience much more peace than the average Joe. If he learns now to repent of his failings quickly and then "let them go" he will use more of his time following God and less time wallowing in guilt.

He'll be at peace with God.

Last night and this morning I had the opportunities to go to two different writers' meetings that I enjoy. I made the choice to skip both, due to being tired and having a long list of to-dos. The enemy tempted me this morning to feel guilt about my choice. Ridiculous, but since I am such a people pleaser my first thought was I should go just to support others and make sure they know I'm for them. Nice enough motive, you'd think. But it comes from a place of guilt. I'm not "enough" because I am not pleasing everyone.

Then I heard my mom's voice, "Robbie, mind your own business." So I put down the guilt and looked up.

Peace reigned down on me.

Trust in Jesus, look to Him in faith and mind your own business. Let others' failings go. They're God's business. Repent quickly of your own sins and then let them go. What happens to your sins after you give them to God is well, His business. Not yours.

And enjoy peace. Deep breathing, smile inducing, gratitude rising peace. May Jehovah Shalom (the LORD is peace) bless you!