5 things to do for a Spiritual Spring Cleaning

Y’all, the 1st day of Spring was this week. And we have seen glorious sunshine for several days. Let me tell you, that does a number on your winter blues. It’s hard to be too gloomy when you have some bright sun beating down on your face. Don’t get me wrong. I am not mad at winter. Bless his heart. But he brought with him a lot of cold and rain. This needs to stop. I would like to say to winter, as my sweet Mama Boyce would say to a nosy neighborhood dog getting in her flower beds,

“Git out of here! Don’t make me take a switch to you!”

But that might be weird, because winter doesn’t really have ears to hear. Oh well, good idea, though.

When I think of spring, one of the things that comes to mind is spring cleaning. Spring cleaning may consist of washing windows, cleaning out closets, clearing out cabinets, dusting ceiling fans, pressure washing the outside vinyl, knocking down all the cobwebs (I get tired just thinking about it!). But you know something to consider, too, is cleaning out our God given house. Spiritual Spring Cleaning is a purging of the dirt in your heart & life. It helps to cleanse your soul of the trash, that may have accumulated. What’s a better time than spring to get rid of the mess? What kind of messes am I talking about?

Consider these-

  1. Complaining
  2. Gossiping
  3. Envying
  4. Comparing
  5. Consuming
  6. Doubting
  7. Fearing
  8. Hating

These things we should avoid doing and even hanging around places where these things are commonly practiced. They do not lift us up in any form or fashion.

Here are 5 things to help spring clean your spiritual life:

1.  Take a good inventory of your heart. What are the things that need bagged up and trashed first? Start by thinking or “studying” about what changes you need to make. It’s always a good idea to think things through. The apostle Paul suggested this to Timothy in  I Timothy 4:15 Meditate on these things; give yourself entirely to them, that your progress may be evident to all. (NKJV)

2. Make a plan. I have always heard it is wise to plan your work & work your plan. We need to plan ahead on how we are going to react when someone starts gossiping to us or about us. We should decide, ahead of time, to not let the little things irritate us. Plan on how you will decide to handle hard situations, before they happen. Plan on how you will handle a know it all. This way, you will have thoughtfully made an effort to change how you view and react to things in advance. 

3. Take action. One way I love to take action is by making lists. Nothing is better than crossing something off my list. My list might look something like this:

  • Count my blessings
  • Give sincere compliments
  • Study the Bible
  • Thank someone
  • Share with someone how the Lord is working in my life.
  • Sit in the sun
  • Love
  • Be humble and kind
  • Remember if you can’t change it, let it go.

4.  Pray about it. This goes without saying. We should pray always, about          everything.

5.  Practice it daily. Y’all, let’s do our best to have a clean heart. I believe it will not only be a blessing to us, but to everyone around us. It will encourage others & help them to see Jesus through us. God is always working for our good. I love the quote:

Practice makes perfect, so watch what you practice!

Let’s make sure we are practicing things that encourage and not tear down.

I sure hope everyone is ready for the weekend! I know we are. It’s been a long week. My dad had surgery on Wednesday. Then, we’ve had others in our family not feeling so very good. Prayers are appreciated. On a good note, I got to see my big brother this week. It’s always a fun time when we are together. Until next time I should be going because I should be washing clothes.

If you are still wanting more ideas on a Spiritual Spring Cleaning- just click here for another article I wrote.

Advertisements

5 things to do when someone tells you to just get over it.

Have you ever had someone to tell you to just get over it? I have a couple of issues with that. It may take me a minute, but just stay with me & hopefully, I won’t butcher this up too much.

Sometimes, in life, I firmly believe there are things you just don’t have to get over. Take for instance a loved one passing away. That is one of the main things in my life, I deal with, is missing my sweet mama, my salt of the earth grandparents, & my in-laws (who were the best people in the entire world). This is a day in & day out pain that I deal with. However, I do my best not to let it overcome me. My husband & I talk about things my mother in law would have said if she had been here while her great grandchildren were. She would have loved things they do & say. I make mention of my daughter’s love for cooking to be purely a fantastic genetic trait, that was passed down from my mama, her Granny & her great grandmothers. Their love for all of us, their good advice, & examples of Christian living, well, those thoughts live with me every day. And thank God for that. I won’t ever get over it.

What about the blood that Jesus shed on the cross for me? I hope I don’t ever get over that. I won’t ever be able to repay the Lord for what He’s done for me & my family. When I think about what the Lord has done for us, I feel so humbled. We have never been forsaken or felt alone – for long anyway. Because there’s a peace that passes all understanding, that well, I don’t understand. I just know that is one of the benefits of Jesus loving me & me obeying Him.

I read an article, the other day about how to get your kids to behave. Like I really need to know about that, huh? It said, when you want a child to do something specifically, you need to tell them how to do it. Instead of saying, “Watch out, you are going to fall.” You would say to a kid that was standing in a chair jumping up & down & screaming: “Sit down on your bottom and be quiet.” That may sound a little common sense worthy. But think of it y’all. How many times do we say things to people, that we want a certain outcome, but we don’t tell them how to do it? So instead of thinking, “Why don’t they just get over ______________? Fill in the blank with anything you wish here- their divorce, their money problems, their relationship problems, theirselves- maybe they just don’t know how.

So, how do we help others or help ourselves? I have a little list of things, I try to apply, that helps me to make it through:

  1. Pray- I know, I know. That’s all anyone ever says is pray about it. Well, that’s not bad advice. Here lately I’ve been doing a lot of that about certain areas of my life. Time in prayer is never wasted. I Thessalonians 5: 16-18  Rejoice always, pray without ceasing, in everything give thanks; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you. (NKJV)
  2. Listen & pay attention- If you stop & take time to listen to what the Lord is saying to you, through His Word, you may be pleasantly surprised. The other day, I was talking to a co-worker about my Dad being sick. He was reminding me his wife was in charge of a rehab/nursing home facility & that if he had to have physical therapy, it was a good place to go. While we were talking, my phone rang. It was the case worker at the hospital saying the doctor had put in orders for my Dad to go to rehab & did I know where he would like to go? WELL YES I DID. Some of the best things in the world have been given to us quietly. So pay attention to the little things going on. Those are sometimes the big things. I John 3:20 For if our heart condemns us, God is greater than our heart, and knows all things.(NKJV)
  3. Be social. Sometimes we just need people, that love us, to be around. You need to be able to reach out to others. Sometimes just being with folks you can laugh with & that make you laugh is extremely good medicine for the soul. Go out to eat with your family. Ask some friends to go to the movies. Prepare for hard days by planning to be with your people. Talk to them about how things are playing out for you & that you have a hard time going on. If they are your real friends & it is family that truly loves you, they will be there. Hands down. No matter what. Proverbs 18:24 A man who has friends must himself be friendly, But there is a friend who sticks closer than a brother. (NKJV)
  4. Realize you can’t do it without Jesus. It’s so heartbreaking to see people try to live this crazy life without the Lord. His presence & guidance is the best thing in the world. If you read & study His Word, you will get answers. Trust me on this one. You may have to be patient. You may have to wait. But that’s okay. Because God is always working for our good. John 14:6 Jesus said to him, “I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through Me. (NKJV)
  5. Count your blessings. It’s hard to be discouraged & depressed if you are thinking about all the Lord has done for you. Just take a few minutes & think about how blessed you are. Even with all the bad things going on & the hurt & the chaos in the world, we as still so, so, blessed. Luke 6:38 Give, and it will be given to you: good measure, pressed down, shaken together, and running over will be put into your bosom. For with the same measure that you use, it will be measured back to you.”(NKJV)

Y’all life is so complicated sometimes. But there’s One that will take you just as you are. In your weak & broken down spirit, He will take you & comfort you. Right this minute, if you needed someone, do you have that person, you know without a doubt you could call on & they would be there for you? You don’t have to have a large group of people. One will do. Now, can you be that person for someone, as well? Make those your people. Because you matter to them & they matter to you. That’s one of the Lord’s way of taking care of you here. He gives us our people.

I am so glad you came by to visit with me today. 2019 has been a little crazy, so far. My Dad’s health is pretty touch & go right now. He had a fall back about a month ago. From that, it’s just been one thing after another for him.  If you get a chance, just keep him in your prayers. On another note we have a brand spanking new grandgirl! She is just gorgeous, of course. We got to be with family & friends all through the holidays. So, life is pretty good. Until next time I have to be going, because I should be washing clothes.

photo credit: Pinterest

Mr. Sweetie Pants- oh how boring life would be without this cutie!

Miss Neenee & Livie

Me & Livie Leigh

If there is a better big brother in the world, I don’t want to know about it.

Big brother visits are the best.

Love all of these faces.

 

 

God’s got this & why Thanksgiving is one of my favorite holidays

Do you ever get down hearted? Just worried & concerned about your family, your finances, your health? Not to mention loved ones around you. It’s the holidays, y’all.  I don’t know about you, but sometimes it seems those are the times we get anxious. We also have a lot of reasons to miss those who have passed on.  I know I miss my mama & grandparents more than ever this time of year.  On another hand, it’s so easy to get caught up in a friend’s well being, or how about the world around us? I promise, I stopped watching the news on t.v. awhile ago. It’s just too much, sometimes. For one thing, it’s depressing. So many terrible things are happening all around us. The shootings, drugs, and just in general how people are turning away from God. It makes you think everyone is bad & wonder where is God when you need Him? If you are like me, you pray & you wait. Then, when things just don’t work out, like I think they should, I start to doubt. I doubt my prayers. I doubt my thoughts. I doubt how things are playing out in my life. I wonder if the Lord is even listening? Or if He has time, with all the other foolishness all around, to even care about my problems. That’s when I have to stop myself, dead in my tracks, & remember Who, the God I pray to, is.

The God I pray to is the same God that created Adam from the dust of the ground. Just made a real, living, breathing, human being straight out of dirt. (Genesis 1:26)

He’s the One who promised Abraham & Sarah a child in their old age. And you know what? Issac was born. (Genesis 17:19)

He’s the One who had never let rain fall on the Earth & promised Noah, if he would go out and build a boat, he would save him. Noah didn’t even know what rain was, but since God said do it, he did & boy, I bet he was proud he did. (Genesis 6: 13-22)

God is the One that promised to send a savior, and then sent Jesus. Not in a big braggadocious, royalty like way. But to a common, every day mom & dad. (Luke 2: 4-7)

The Lord raised people from the dead, made people whole that could not be healed by anyone else on Earth, put the stars in the sky, and made a donkey talk. (Numbers 22: 28)

For one second, I should never think He ain’t able to help me. Sometimes, I have to remind myself Who I am talking to. Because He can do more than I could ever think or imagine. All He needs from me, as a Christian, is to believe He can. Then, He will.

Matthew 21:22 And whatever things you ask in prayer, believing, you will receive

The same God that can create a universe out of nothing, can answer my prayers. Just knowing that should make my faith big. When I get to feeling things are hopeless, I think about how the Lord has a way of working things out in our lives. We may not understand what is happening, at the time. However, the Lord has always provided for me & my family. Even when I didn’t know what the outcome would be, He was right on time. He will do the same for you. Don’t ever doubt it. Things are going to happen to us. We are going to have to deal with things, we wish we didn’t. However, with God, you never have to worry.

Isaiah 54:17 says:    

No weapon formed against you shall prosper,
And every tongue which rises against you in judgment
You shall condemn.
This is the heritage of the servants of the Lord,
And their righteousness is from Me,”
Says the Lord.

 

It does not say weapons (problems) will never form. Problems will arise. However, God will not let them prosper (continue). Our job is to keep a Christ like attitude about it, pray about it, & wait for God to work it out.

I love this saying:

I hope everyone has had a wonderful week. Are you ready for the big day on Thursday? I know we are so excited to be with family and friends over Thanksgiving.  This is one of my most favorite holidays. My daddy called me last night & we planned what we were going to have for breakfast that day. Y’all eating is very serious with us. I just cannot wait to get all my people in my house. Those guys are pretty important to me. And I love, love, love being in their company. Family, friends, & eating too much. My favorite. I hope you have a truly wonderful Thanksgiving. As for me, I must be going, because I should be washing clothes.

Behind these sweet smiles were some cold girls!

Parade time! We love a parade!

Miss Neenee enjoyed her birthday cookies. Since she loves to cook, it was only fitting she had cooking themed cookies.

Look how cute! These were made by Meg Makes and Bakes. They tasted as good as they were pretty!

On an unrelated note, I almost had bread crumbs for breakfast instead of oatmeal the other morning. Darn those same looking containers. And my old eyes.

 

photo credit: Amazon, Pinterest

 

 

We should care like Jesus does & why high school is a bad idea

Goodness gracious is it really just a few weeks until the kids go back to school? I just can’t with this. Miss Neenee is going to be in the 9th grade.

As in High. School.

I ask myself: “Why does she even need higher learning?” I love her just the way she is. But she is so excited to go. I just know with high school beginning, that means she will be flying out of our little nest before too many years. Which is not my favorite.

I am so over this already, y’all and it ain’t even started. Oh my word.  I’m trying my best not to make a mountain out of a mole hill, but GAH.

HIGH SCHOOL. MY BABY. TOO MUCH TO HANDLE.

Bless my heart. Y’all pray for me. Because dadgum it if I had my druthers we would still be here.

Not here.

Speaking of which, do you ever get so caught up with your own circus of problems, that you don’t notice what others have going on? I am so bad about this, unless someone just pretty much comes up to me & tells me what’s happening, I don’t even pay attention to what’s all around me. It’s not that I don’t care, it’s that I have such a heapin’, helpin’ of this life stuff happening, that I may fail to look at what others are going through. That’s not always good.

This past Sunday, our Sunday School teacher was talking about Jesus. He was mentioning the fact that Jesus helped people & we should be willing to do the same thing. He was talking about how Jesus healed the woman, that had an issue of blood. She had so much faith, that she knew if she could just get to Jesus & touch the hem of his garment, her troubles would be over.

Matthew 9:20-22

 And suddenly, a woman who had a flow of blood for twelve years came from behind and touched the hem of His garment. 21 For she said to herself, “If only I may touch His garment, I shall be made well.” 22 But Jesus turned around, and when He saw her He said, “Be of good cheer, daughter; your faith has made you well.” And the woman was made well from that hour.

 

A sweet hearted lady at church made mention of just that fact people may still be reaching out to touch His garment. When they do, we need to be ready to help. Her point was this, people are hurting. They need the same healing Jesus gave that woman. If others around us reach out to us, we need to be ready to point them to Jesus. I know some may be reluctant to lend a helping hand to others because

A. What do you even say to a person that is in dire straits?

And

B. Who am I to get into someone else’s business?

If you see someone that you know has had a hard time or is having a hard time, sometimes just saying, “I’m praying for you, would you like to talk?” or “What can I do to make things easier for you?” or “Here’s my cell number. Text me & let’s go out to eat.”  Are  WONDERFUL ways to begin. Then, be there to lend an ear, or meet for lunch, or whatever the other person feels comfortable with. Now let me tell you, I am the worst one in the world to accept help from others. I will scratch and claw and knash my teeth before I will give up and take someone’s offer of help. I have this stubborn way of thinking that I have to do everything on my own. It may be a pride thing or just being bull headed. But there are times I have to step back & say, “This is too much.” Then, members of my personal support team come in and rescue me. (**Personal support team = my wonderful, unjudging family & friends**)

The kind hearted lady I was talking about, just a minute ago, is actually a doctor. She counsels and is basically a super hero. She made mention of the fact that people need to understand they do not have to walk around with the weight of the world on their shoulders. People need to realize there is help out there. It’s through us as Christians that we need to be willing to reach out and help others. I heard a preacher say once,

“People are hurting. They need to know we care & they need to know about the love of Jesus.”

You just never know what the person right beside you is going through.

AND you don’t have to be up in someone’s business to help. Simply just saying, “I’m here if you need me.” Or “I have been thinking about you.” Or how about, “I love you.” Plain & simple. Sometimes just knowing you have support is the best medicine. If the other person does need help, hopefully, this will open the door for them to tell you that.

I can remember my mama telling me more than once,

“Don’t let things get in sucha mess. You would have been so much better off if you had of let somebody help you.”

Yes, yes I could have.  But my “I can do it myself” got in the way with reality. Which was “I really could use help, like last week.” I guess I just don’t like to admit I can’t HANDLE IT ALL. Which is really silly of me because I have help around every corner, if I would only quit thinking I am less of a person for needing help. And you know my Personal Support Team I made mention of? Every time I ask one of them to help me out, they are more than glad to. It goes without saying, it would be advisable for me to not think I am too good to ask or receive help because like my Mama Boyce used to say:

“Lawdy, chile, you know better than that.”

So, to recap:

  1. Realize there are people that need help.
  2. Be prepared to help others.
  3. Let others help you,

I am so glad you came by to visit with me today. It has been hotter than blue blazes here. Which is great if you can stay under the air conditioning all the time. Otherwise, it can be a smidge inconvenient because hair and makeup are not a fan of humidity. More than once in the past few weeks I have declared: I’ma ’bout to burn up! Miss Neenee is at band camp this week and next week. Pray that she remembers to put on her sunscreen, bless her red faced heart. Until next time, I should be going because I should be washing clothes.

Photo credit: www.pinterest.com, BibleGodQuotes

 

If you are looking for good news, you will find it here!

I have some good news for you today. If you have been going through some rough and troubled times, don’t worry. They won’t last forever.

I have a sign, in my office at work, that says:

Everything in life is temporary. So if things are going good, enjoy it because it won’t last forever. And if things are going bad, don’t worry. It can’t last forever either.

This is a wonderful reminder of God’s care for us. In Psalms 130, the psalmist seems to be in a dark place. It seems he filled with desperation & is searching for relief. It seems he is pleading to the Lord.

Psalms 130:1 Out of the depths I have cried to You, O Lord;
Lord, hear my voice!
Let Your ears be attentive
To the voice of my supplications. (NKJV)

Have you ever been in such a state of mind that you just pray and beg the Lord for some sort of answer? I know I have. There have been times in my life that have seemed pretty bleak. Trusting in the Lord was the best thing I could ever do. Sometimes it’s hard to see how things are going to end up. But when you put your faith in God, things just tend to have a way of working themselves out. Even when things are in the Lord’s timing and not mine.

Psalms 130:5-6

5 I wait for the Lord, my soul waits,
And in His word I do hope.
My soul waits for the Lord
More than those who watch for the morning—
Yes, more than those who watch for the morning. (NKJV)

So if you are waiting in the darkness of problems and struggles, just know daylight’s a coming! You can have the reassurance the Lord will take care of you. His love and mercy is with us always.

Psalms 118:29 Oh, give thanks to the Lord, for He is good! For His mercy endures forever. (NKJV)

Y’all. My daughter fried chicken and made homemade French fries last night. I’m not sure how you are raising your kids, but if they can’t whoop out some from scratch buttermilk biscuits at the age of 13 or 14, you are doing it all wrong. Maybe we just got really lucky with this gifted little cook of ours. But Lord have mercy, it’s the devil on a waist line. This weekend, she made a double decker, from scratch, cookie cake for my oldest daughter’s birthday. It was chocolate chip with homemade chocolate cream cheese icing. Now let’s get this straight, I’m not telling you all of this to make you jealous or to get her married off. I am just wanting you to know there is hope in our future of youngun’s that’s coming up. Because you know what? She has the nerve of trying to go to high school in August. That’s a lot to put a mama’s heart through. Excuse me while I hush up my cryin’.

I hope you have had a good week so far. During the cold months, here in northeast Mississippi, I made statements such as, “You won’t hear me complain one time when it gets hotter than blue blazes outside. I’m not saying a word.” So that’s what I am doing right now. Not saying a word about it being humid as all get out & melting you down to a puddle, just by walking outside. And if I have checked my calendar correctly, it is May. So, Not. A. Word. Until next time I have to be going because I should be washing clothes.

 

 

 

 

 

 

5 things for when life treats you bad & weather drama

There are unfortunate circumstances that happen in life, that there is nothing you can do about. You didn’t create it. You didn’t do anything to make it happen. You don’t support it or even want it around.  But there it is. And you have to deal with it. Everybody has things they just wish they didn’t have to deal with. Sometimes life is just unfair. When bringing this fact to my Daddy’s attention, he will always say, “Fair is where grandma takes her pickles.” Point taken.

If you have never encountered a situation that has completely pulled the rug out from under you, that you had no control over, you are so blessed. However, don’t get too comfortable, because there’s a good chance, it’s coming. What kind of events am I referring to?

  1. Sickness– Either yours or someone very close to you.
  2. A broken relationship– This could be a husband, wife, child, sister, brother, mother, father, friend. Anyone that means something to you.
  3. Finances-losing a job, not being able to work due to sickness, etc.,.
  4. Addiction– yours or someone close to you.
  5. Loss– The loss of a loved one.

Y’all, this is just a short list. In our daily lives, there are all kinds of things that can be thrown at us. Unwanted things & situations we just wish we did not have to deal with. However, I am a firm believer, that’s just life. Life is not simple. It can be really hard sometimes. There are things that we go through that maybe we are ashamed of or don’t think anyone cares or understands. No matter what there is always, always, always something to be thankful for. Even if it’s that all days are not like the one you just had! Here are some ways to make it through a tough time.

  1. Realize. Realize that not everyone was raised like you. Not everyone wants to change. Not everyone cares they are causing you problems. Realize you cannot change anybody. Realize you are in charge of you & that’s all.

II Timothy 3:6 (NKJV) For of this sort are those who creep into households and make captives of gullible women loaded down with sins, led away by various lust

                2. Think. Think about how you will react to situations. All the hollering and             kicking and screaming will not change some folks. Don’t put yourself through it. Just don’t. Those are the people who are not worth it.

Proverbs 18:24 (NKJV) A man who has friends must himself be friendly, But there is a friend who sticks closer than a brother.

(AND THEN THERE ARE SOME PEOPLE WHO ARE NOT OUR FRIENDS. The quicker you take this into account, the better off you will be.)

3. Pray. I know this is just a given. But you know, sometimes the rug can be pulled  out from under us so quickly, that we forget to go to the Lord in prayer. If you haven’t heard, the Lord has all the answers. We just need to make sure we are talking to him & taking it all to Him in prayer.

Nahum 1:7 (NKJV)The Lord is good,
A stronghold in the day of trouble;
And He knows those who trust in Him 

          4. Focus. Focus on the good. Focus on someone else, who may not have it as good as you do. Focus on helping others & being a light, in a dim world. Focus on what you can do to make something easier for someone else.

I Corinthians 9:24 (NKJV) Do you not know that those who run in a race all run, but one receives the prize? Run in such a way that you may obtain it.

              5. Encourage. Be an encouragement for everyone around you. I promise you, if you are thinking of others & loving them, your problems will most of the time take care of themselves.  Be so busy loving others, you don’t have time to think of the hatefulness of others.

Psalm 31:24  (NKJV)24 Be of good courage,
And He shall strengthen your heart,
All you who hope in the Lord.

 

I know hard times can be, well, hard. We just need to have a plan to make it. If not, things can spiral pretty quickly. We need to love others and be sure to not be selfish. Find someone to talk to about what you are going through. You may be surprised to learn, others may be going through the same thing or may have a way to cope until things get better. **I do want to mention, some people struggle with depression. It’s not really something that just giving yourself a pep talk will take care of. Sometimes you need to see a doctor. And that’s okay. There are all kinds of medications to help you cope. Don’t be ashamed. You don’t have to be on them forever. Just to help you out, when you need it. Know that you are not an island. Other people depend on you. So, take care of yourself.** And know, the Lord is there for you. He wants to help you through your challenging times. Bad things happen to good people. But, the Lord shows you how to weather the storm & learn lessons you can only learn through difficult times. Then, you will have the experience to help someone else. And isn’t that what it’s all about? Loving and helping each other.

I thought I was done, but I do have one more thing to say.

Bad times happen to everybody.

It’s just how we view them & work through them that make the difference.  We accept good from God. We also have to accept trials.

Ecclesiastes 9:11 I returned and saw under the sun that— The race is not to the swift, Nor the battle to the strong, Nor bread to the wise, Nor riches to men of understanding, Nor favor to men of skill; But time and chance happen to them all.

I hope everyone is having a blessed week. It has been cold here. I wore my sandals to work the other day and about froze my toes off. 35 degrees is still 35 degrees whether it’s in April or December. LORD HAVE MERCY, I know it’s going to warm up, but it sure is taking it’s time! Beats all I’ve ever seen. We are still playing softball. And by we, I mean Miss Neenee. She is enjoying the fire out of it, to our dismay of long, cold nights sitting outdoors, at a ball field.

Until next time, I should be going, because I should be washing clothes.

photo credits: makeameme.org, , know your role, Calvin & Hobbes

 

 

 

 

Who cares?

I can’t help but absolutely love this.

I hope everyone had a blessed Easter weekend. We had a wonderful time at Lads to Leaders in Nashville, TN. If you have never heard of Lads to Leaders, you can read about it here. It is a training tool for our younguns’ coming up in the church. I cannot tell you how encouraged and excited it makes me to see so many young people working for the Lord! It makes me feel good. Like a warm biscuit on a Sunday morning good. (In the great words of Kelly Clarkson.)

Our amazing group of youth at Lads to Leaders

I was so honored to get to judge a group of 9th grade girls doing speech. I just sat there in awe of their sweet hearts and love for the Lord.  As I listened to them, I said a little prayer, just thanking Jesus for letting me be right there in that moment. It really blessed my heart. And after my week at work, I sure needed my heart blessed!

One of the girls, that spoke, said something that really got me to thinking. She was talking about how the Lord cares about us. How He looks beyond our imperfections and short comings. It especially got my attention when she said,

“Does God really care about my Bs?”

Bless it.

I believe this precious young lady hit the nail on the head. I believe the Lord cares for us in ways we sometimes don’t consider.

Do you think the Lord cares about my dishes that need washing? Or my clothes that need folded? Or my closet that needs cleaned out? Or when I eat candy in bed? Or my hair that needs the gray covered? Or my pants that beg me to eat a salad?  I believe the Lord cares about me just like I am. He knows I have faults. But he loves me anyway.

I Peter 5:6-7

Therefore humble yourselves under the mighty hand of God, that He may exalt you in due time, casting all your care upon Him, for He cares for you.

The Lord cares about you. Whether you are a hot mess or forget to take the clothes out of the washer for three days straight. Whether you can’t stay on a diet for love nor money or eat Easter candy for breakfast. Whether or not you hit your steps on your Fitbit or hit the snooze on your alarm too many times. The Lord loves you.

Romans 8:31  

What then shall we say to these things? If God is for us, who can be against us?

And in the words of my sweet baby grandgirl:

“We are on God’s team.”

4 years old and she knows Who’s taking care of us.

So, so, blessed by this sweet friend!

I hope you all have blessed week. Spring is springing and the pollen has made itself at home, apparently. I don’t necessarily like that guy. On the brighter side Miss Neenee is playing softball and we are just enjoying the fire out of it. She has quite the bunt this year. #softballgoals Until next time I should be going because I should be washing clothes.

Please be in prayer for my daughter & her little family. My son-in-law has deployed & we miss him so much!

 

photo credit-Facebook

 

 

 

 

 

5 things to help you when dealing with illness & being thankful for the little things

I was talking to a co-worker, the other day. I was sharing how many boxes I had to use to store my 2017 files. Normally, I use about 6. This year, I have already filled up 11 boxes & have more to go. We were talking about how blessed we were to have had a lot of work last year.  It also made me think about my mama & how she thought about work.

If you are new here, you may not know, but my mama passed away in 2002. She had multiple sclerosis. She was a wonderful person, not to mention the best mama in the WORLD. She became ill in her early 40s. So when I hit my early 40s guess what I thought was going to happen to me?? Yep. I got past it & thanked the Lord for it.  Looking back, I learned so many lessons while she was sick. It was a terrible time for our family. But we stuck together. One of the things I remember about my mama was that she worked hard. She worked at home & she worked an outside job. Once she got sick, I can remember on many occasions talking to her about work. There were times I would come in after work & be so tired. She would always tell me to be thankful.  She would say,

” Be glad you can go to work. I would just give anything if I could.”

That has really stuck with me through the years. I think of that when I get stressed or aggravated, at work. I am so blessed to have a good job & thankful I am healthy enough to go to work. When you get sick & tired of work & think how hard you must have it, just remember there’s those out there who would love to be healthy & able to hold down a job. Now that I look back on all those times when my mama was sick, I think of lessons I learned. And that’s something I want to say today. If you are going through a sickness of your own or someone else you love, here are some things to keep in mind:

1. Keep moving. Oh, it’s ok to stop & have a moment here & there. But look for the opportunities to do good.  You will do no good living on the corner of gloom and doom. Yes, it’s a tough deal, that no one wants to deal with. If you use your time to count your blessings & look ahead, things won’t be so grim. At one time, Mama was on the one at church, that you called to report announcements. She would take them down & give them to my Dad for church. She loved talking to people & letting them know they had our support. Find something you enjoy & keep going.

2. I learned just because you have a pain, doesn’t mean you have to be a pain. The nurses & nurses aids that cared for my mama always loved her. She hated to be in the position she was in. And she deeply appreciated those doing for her what she could no longer do for herself.

3. Never lose sight of God. In times of trials, it is so easy to question God & want to know why. There are no real good reasons why bad things happen to good people except that we live in a fallen world where the bad comes with the good. Accept it. It’s reality. We all deal with things we wish we didn’t have to. Keep your faith in God alive & well. Sometimes it’s all we have. Mama went to church even when my daddy would have to get her ready, pick her up & put her in the van, & push her in with her sitting in a wheelchair. That is true love for God.

Job 2:10 Shall we indeed accept good from God & shall we not accept adversity? (NKJV)

4. Look for the happy times. Illnesses are awful. But there is good in everything. I got to spend lots of quality time with my precious mama those last few years of her life. We learned to look for the little things, in our day, to help us make it through. Like getting the mail, the nurse coming, an unexpected guest, cooking special dishes, receiving cards from friends & family or ordering out. I can say, most of the time she kept a good attitude. Which I believe her thankfulness helped keep her grounded with her illness.

5. Keep your sense of humor. I can remember a lot of different times when mama would say, “Don’t that beat all?” Then she would laugh about whatever mess we had gotten ourselves into. Because, bless my heart more times than not, every time we tried to do something I would end up making things twice as hard as they really were. Things that were normally easy, was tough, when she was bedfast. Washing her hair was a total mess sometimes. Because how do you wash someone’s hair in the bed? I usually ended up getting her soaking wet. She would laugh & say she never thought she would have to swim with her gown on.  Laughing would help break up the monotony of the reality of what was really going on.

 Ephesians 4:28  Let him that stole steal no more: but rather let him labor, working with his hands the thing which is good, that he may have to give to him that needeth.(KJV)

I hope you are having a blessed week. It’s been very rainy the past few days. And cold. We have thankfully been in the house! I hope you are somewhere sunny, with balmy wind hitting you in the face. I won’t be too jealous! Until next time, I should be going, because I should be washing clothes.

Click on the free printable to download scripture memory cards for encouragement.

 

photo credit: http://www.meetpenny.com, pinterest

 

 

6 more weeks of winter & God is in control

Well, unless you have been under a rock, you know by now,

THERE WILL BE 6 MORE WEEKS OF WINTER

That is if you put your weather stock in a groundhog by the name of Puxsutawney Phil. Which of course why would you not?

I also wanted to mention the fact that it’s a good idea to remember at the end of the day God is in control. Oh He may let things get plumb down right crazy but He is always working behind the scenes for our good.

Don’t forget to pray.

I Thessalonians 5:17 Pray continually (NKJV) 

Don’t forget to be thankful.

Ephesians 5:20 always giving thanks to God the Father for everything, in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ. (NKJV)

Don’t forget to be grateful.

Psalm 100:2 Serve the Lord with gladness; Come before His presence with singing.(NKJV)

Because just as graciously as we have received the Lord’s care & blessings, it can always be snatched away.

This world is not certain. But God is always there, if we seek Him.

Acts 17:27 so that they should seek the Lord, in the hope that they might grope for Him and find Him, though He is not far from each one of us;(NKJV)

I hope you all have a wonderful weekend. It’s cold here. We’ve had our snow & ice situation back in January. Now, I am on the count down for some warmer weather. AND I DON”T WANT TO HEAR ONE WORD ABOUT HOW HOT IT IS THIS SUMMER. Because after this cold winter, all the summer smoltering weather is long forgotten. Until next time, dear friends, I have to go because I should be washing clothes.

 

One Word for 2018

I’m not sure if you make New Year’s Resolutions or not. I always bust mine wide open by about week 2. I have always felt like such a failure with my resolutions. Because of that, for the past several years I have made a One Word Resolution.

One Word is a word you remember, pray about, pay attention to, & is basically your courage key to make yourself better in the new year.

This year my One Word is FOCUS.

What does that mean? It means, in 2018,  I will discipline myself to focus intentionally on my life.  I will focus on my work. I will focus on what the Lord is wanting me to learn in all situations. I will focus on others. I will look deeper into God’s Word and FOCUS.

So, who’s with me?  I will tell you, if you want to be a better version of you. If you want to have a plan in the forefront of your mind. If you want to have your life changed, this is for you. This little plan has done all of that for me. Come on & join me in One Word! What have you got to lose?

Here are some other One Words I have had in the past-

Trust

Courage

Pray

Gratitude

I am so glad you came by to visit with me today. I hope you are having a blessed week. Until next time, I have to be going because I should be washing clothes.

If you want to read more about One Word, click here.