Friday, August 28, 2015

I should have written it down....

I thought of something good to write about this morning during my quiet time.... but I didn't write it down... and that is mine and your loss for I can't remember what it was. Oh well. Guess I will ramble through all this....

Yesterday we had a magnificent storm run through Tempe. I mention just one city cause I think that is the only place the rain hit. The rain was coming down so hard at 4:30 I did not attempt to leave, but waited until 5PM when my boss was ready to leave. The rain had lightened up and we ran to her car in the undercover parking garage. She then drove me about a block away where I park - also under cover. It was the 'getting to the car' that was the issue. The rain was coming down sideways. I get in the car, drive about 5 miles - and the rain stops. No rain all the way home. Go figure. We really need rain in my area but the rain always seems to stay in Tempe. We did have a lot of wind by the house - the neighbor's 2-3 year old tree was totally uprooted.

Sometimes we just need rain. We need to be watered with love, faithfulness, patience.... and other times the shining sun, the soft breeze of the wind is what we need.... and still other times, the harsh reality of the sharp rain and strong winds can awaken us to what life is all about us. Interpretation of the weather can be interesting.

Standing and looking out of my boss' window (and taking video of the rain) was fun - well, we weren't out in it - but instead we were enjoying the beauty of the wind, the rain, the thunder, the lightening. If I was out driving in it, I am confident I would not have through it was so beautiful and laughing about it. I don't mind rain.... but people out here don't get it often enough to know how to drive in it. Even with no rain there were a couple accidents enroute home.

Life can throw us a few storms. Some days the atmosphere in my house feels like a storm brewing - or even in full fury. I totally withdraw on those days - preferring to run away with a book to escape reality until the storm blows over. I used to do that when I was growing up. To escape the reality of my home life, I escaped into my books - many times reading an entire novel in one day. I lived my life through reading. Not only being I enjoyed reading, but to escape what life was in reality.

But in spite of the storms in our lives, there is ONE who can walk with us through that storm. Jesus. I can't tell you how many times I've cried out to Him to stay close for I couldn't bear to continue - and He always does. I'm reminded of the song 'Nobody knows, the trouble I've seen, Nobody knows, but Jesus'.... and that is the truth!

Who do you cling to in the midst of trouble and strife? When the money runs out before the bills do - who do you cry out to for help? When groceries seem depleted and you don't know how to create another meal with what you have - who do you trust to pull it all together? When you feel beaten and worn out, who do you run to? I know WHO I trust. Jesus. I've been in all these circumstances. In fact, some of them I feel I live in quite often. I have learned how to cook from scratch because we only had flour and eggs in the house. I became a collector of cookbooks (many of which I've given away now, but many I still have and love to go through). My dream is to become debt free - but unless I start focusing and keep that mindset, it won't happen. I'd like to lose twenty pounds. It won't happen unless I lay off the cookies, pizza, cakes and pies and ice cream that are some of my comfort go to foods.

And what should we do when we set a goal? WRITE IT DOWN. If I want to remember it, I need to WRITE IT DOWN so that I can refer to it and keep that dream, that thought, that goal, in front of me. And so should you.

What should you have written down this morning to remember? WHO should you rely on to get you through the day? Think about it. I know WHOM I'm trusting in!


Monday, August 24, 2015

It's been a while....

since I've written anything here - but my goodness - I did not believe it when I saw July 31 as my last post! Here it is in the last full week of August and I know 'life' has happened in that timeframe - but guess it either wasn't interesting enough to write about - or I just didn't have time. I guess you could say a little bit of both.

This month has been a somewhat busy one - two grandsons birthdays and mine as well. My birthday was a good day. We had dinner at the daughter's house and one of the sons came with his family. It is always fun to get together and share a meal - even though it was Papa Murphy's pizza - it was good and it was fun! Other than that, the day was eventful in that I got several phone calls and texts from friends and family - and that is always good. I did receive a good number of cards as well. It's always good to be celebrated.

But that was a couple weeks ago and life goes on. Oh yeah, we also celebrated our 33rd anniversary this month. We didn't do anything special as I talked hubby into waiting until September for us to get away for a few days. We have another granddaughter getting married in September and since it is out of state and I will be taking time off work for that, I just took a couple extra days and we'll come back to our state and head north for a couple days. Our poor dog will truly hate us when we get back after putting her in the 'pet hotel' for 6-7 days. We've only done that once - usually it is only 1-2 days at a time, as we don't get away that often.

I went shopping with my daughter last week and bought 5 new dresses - it seems forever since I bought any clothes for work - and it looks like I will only take one back. I put it on again yesterday and go 'ehhhh'... lol my usual nose scrunching that means 'I don't like the way this looks'.... yes, I did try it on at the store and I thought it was ok... but... I changed mind. I did get one black and white dress that I wore once to work - and wore again to church yesterday and got lots of compliments on it - so at least I bought one dress that looks good on me! I may need to try the others on again and see if I need to take any others back. I'm just that way.

Work has been busy but I think I'm on top of things. I don't have any meetings this week - oh wait - yes, I have one on Thursday - but all I do is take minutes - which reminds me, I still need to type up from last week. Oh well. Some meetings are hard to take minutes for and participate in when you aren't fully involved.

Our offices will be moving by the end of the year - so we have been told. We'll stay in the area we are in - but move a few miles north - won't make much difference on my drive time - will be about the same. I got to be on the 'move committee' cause I want to know what's going on. At least that's what I told them.

Got up about 5 minutes until 4AM this morning. Just before the alarm went off. It was interesting how I woke up. I was in a dead sleep, then I remember breathing deeply (like taking a deep breath after not breathing) and sitting up in bed. I looked at the clock and saw the time - so just shut off the alarm and started getting ready for work. And here I am. I don't seem to get on my computer much at home anymore. It gives me a lot of problems some time and I just don't want to mess with it. Use my ipad a lot of times, but I need to get back on the computer for this fall I am scheduled to speak at a couple RV parks several times - and need to start working on the messages.

And for now, I need to get focused on work and get some things done. Keep your eyes on what is important - and let go of what is not. You will find that you will feel much better when you do that - mentally, physically and spiritually.


Friday, July 31, 2015

It's been a walking time....

Walking is good for you. Walking is good for me. I like walking. I wouldn't say I LOVE walking, but I do enjoy it. I especially like it when I can walk alone and be lost in my thoughts - but I also sometimes like to walk with others so that I can process thoughts with them. Or catch up with what's going on in their lives - and share what is going on in mine.

I've been walking a lot lately. And I do mean A LOT. Although I do enjoy exercising, I don't have the time to be devoted to it. Or perhaps it is that I just choose not to make time. Hmmm. Whatever. Anyway - I think I mentioned it before that my company has a walking contest ever so often. They have you walking like 6,000 steps the first week or two, then 7,000, then 8,000 and by the last two weeks of the challenge, you are walking 10,000 steps a day. I have done that challenge before - and completed it. And I completed it big time this last time. We were to end up with 355,000 steps over this 6 week period. When the challenge was over, I had racked up 457,229 steps for that six week time period. Whoo Hoo!! Yes, I have the app, and I can show that I did do that many steps!

I love my Fitbit. I've had one for about 3 years now and I love how it counts my steps automatically. My little sister got a Fitbit probably a couple months ago - which is probably why my steps were over 100,000 more than I needed for the last challenge! In the beginning, we were challenging each other. No set number, but just to see who would get the most steps over a day or a weekend. I finally told her to stop it - I was worn out! So then we slipped back into just daily counting - or at least I did. My goal is 10,000 steps a day, but weekends it is really hard for me for that is when I'm doing other things besides walking. And, if I'm sitting down working on a quilt or a project, I certainly can not walk and do that too! Therefore, my weekend numbers usually drop into the 5,000 mark somewhere.

Well, (yes, I'm going somewhere with all this information)lately I have really pushed myself. I would like to lose weight (and I have lost about 5 pounds over the past 6 weeks)and walking is exercise. I do have a treadmill at home (although I need to look at the motor - it is starting to stop on me periodically so wonder if it needs cleaned - or replaced) which I use almost daily in the evening. I slacked off for two weeks after the challenge and did less than 10,000 steps a day for that time. I glanced at my total and compared to my sister's and she was nearly 40,000 ahead of me for a 7 day period! Of course her excuse for it being so high is that she had taken the family to "Holiday World" and they had walked everywhere. I think it used to be called 'Santa Claus Land'. Go figure.

I think it's terrible of people to rename things because someone might be offended. Really? Stupid. They should consider it an honor to be acknowledged. For example, the Washington Redskins. The 'Redskin Indians' want the name 'Redskins' dropped because they find it offensive. Why? They are wiping any thoughts of their nationality out. Fifty years from now people won't even know what a Redskin is. Heck, they probably don't know now. The name of one of our mountains was changed from 'Squaw Peak' to an 'I can spell it right so ain't trying' name - granted, it was to honor the first Indian woman killed in Iraq - and that's ok, but it was already up in the air about the 'Squaw Peak' name. Anyway - my thought is - they should consider it an honor it was put there in the first place. Without, and over time, people will forget they even exist. All to be "politically correct'. So sad. But - I got away from what I was talking about.

Back to walking. My sister had racked up a lot of mileage while she was walking all over 'Holiday Land'. Well, I got that "oh no you don't" attitude and started walking more. A co-worker here at work and I got to talking and she is trying to lose weight. So - she walks her breaks and lunch hour in the parking garage. When I can get away from my desk, I walk the breaks and lunch hour with her. Usually I never take a break or lunch hour, so this is a new thing for me. Having to realign all my duties for I usually just spaced them out over the day - now I "lose" 1 1/2 hours a day by walking.

I know this is long.... but stay with me here. I've been walking with her for the past couple weeks and then this past week I started getting on my treadmill at home, to increase my steps (and catch up with my little sister). Long story short, Last Tuesday I earned my 25,000 step 'badge'. On Wednesday night, I decided to push through and get it again. I went to 27,048! Believe me, I was praying all the way through it - cause I wanted to earn a new 'badge' and push myself. I really would like to tell you of some comments made recently but, it is probably best I leave them off.......

But I do have to tell you the comment of what was said last night - and men, do NOT ever say this to your spouse. This is one of those 'never go there'. I'm walking on the treadmill, and my hubby comes in and after a few questions and comments, he asks..... 'do you think it is doing you any good?'

Life is sometimes full of challenges. As I drove in to work this morning I was thinking about the challenges I daily face in my life. One thing I do know, I could not face any of those challenges without knowing that God is on my side, and He has my back. As I got my coffee and water this morning, the words to a song filtered through my mind... "I know Who goes before me, I know Who stands behind, the God of Angel Armies, is always by my side.. He is the ... (I forget)... He is a Friend of mine, the God of Angel Armies, is always by my side." I am so grateful my God is not made of material things; He is not made of gold or silver. He is not made of wood. He was not created.

He is the Creator. To Him is all Glory, all Honor, all Praise, alone. Praise Him!


Monday, July 27, 2015

What do you do.... when you go through fire?

We had the opportunity to go to a pre-screening of a movie last week. I wish I had had the time to write it out while it was still fresh in my mind - but even with coming into work early, I have been so busy getting things done - or attempting to - that I just didn't have time to write anything last week. In fact, there were a few times that I had something I wanted to write - but the thoughts escape me for now. Maybe it will come back to me soon and I can have something to share.

Anyway, back to the movie. The movie is called 90 Minutes in Heaven. It's a story of a man who was considered dead - with no pulse - for 90 minutes, before a pulse was found on him. What I found interesting, after thinking over the movie, is that the movie really isn't about Heaven. Yes, Heaven is mentioned, and Heaven is shown, sorta... but the real story is the journey that this man went on from the accident to being able to live again.

What a journey he had to endure. Severe, crushing, pain. Pain so great he didn't want to even breathe anymore. I'm sure he sunk into depression. Interestingly, it never showed him calling out to God for strength to endure, or even for healing. I'm sure that happened, but it wasn't shown. I don't want to share much more of the story, but encourage you to go see it - it comes out in the theaters on September 11. 90 Minutes in Heaven.

I must admit I wasn't sure what to expect - the movie is 2 hours 2 minutes long (so we were told). I'll tell you how interesting it is...... I kept telling myself to get up and go to the restroom before the movie started (once I found out how long it was) - but talked myself out of it. Once the movie started, I didn't think about needing to go to the restroom. I was so caught up in the story, that I totally forgot and before I knew it, the movie was over.

As I have thought about the movie, one thought keeps coming back that was mentioned. "If God takes you to it, He will take you through it. I'm sure that can be taken different ways, but I believe that if God allows you to endure something, He has a reason for it.

It could be you are to journey with someone else along the way. I must admit I would have liked to see my daughter become more involved with those who have leukemia, to encourage them that they too, can recover. But life took over and she wasn't given the opportunity to share her life story with others. But the good part of it all, she did fight the insurance company to get her transplant paid for, and with doing that, the insurance company did change their policy for one transplant. Shortly afterwards she heard of a child of a teacher, covered by the same insurance, had leukemia and would be able to qualify for a transplant. Perhaps that is what God wanted to happen. Who am I to determine His plans for anyone.

We all go through things at one time or another. It could be financial hardship. (Unfortunately, usually of our own doing). It could be sickness. It could be job situations. It could be wayward children. It could be our own personal struggles. Whatever the situation is, no matter how it came about, always remember that God will walk you through the problem, as long as you give it to Him and seek Him to guide you. Trying to fix it your own way may be short term, but for a long-lasting fix, we need to lay it down and ask for direction and guidance on what to do. And follow THAT leading, not our own.

I love this quote.... If God takes you to it, He will take you through it. There is also a song we used to sing at church.... when you are going through fire, don't stop, keep going on through it. So many times we get to the problem and shut down. Keep doing what is good and right, following God's lead. And keep going until you get to the other side.


Monday, July 20, 2015

It was a fun one....

I had a good weekend. The weather was overcast some, but overall, it was a good weekend. My weekend consisted of working with my Aunt Sue for a few hours on Saturday, marking prices on items for a November yard sale, then picking up my daughter and granddaughter to go shopping for 'dorm stuff'. I can't believe this princess will be starting college in August!! That is next month!!

It's hard to believe, even, that two older granddaughters have gotten through their schooling, one for a respiratory therapist and is now married, and one for an LPN and is getting married in September! Lots of things going on with the three older granddaughters. I'm glad I'm not getting too old to hang out and do things with them.

Sunday was church and then just hanging out with hubby - you know, doing the grocery thing, then hanging out at home. I did go spend a couple hours with my neighbor last night, so I guess I can say I did get a lot done this weekend.

Definitely no cleaning or anything. Heaven forbid I should do that.

I guess things are starting to settle down again..... the youngest child has gotten moved, the middle child has made a trip to Indiana for a weekend recently, the oldest child will be moving to a house the end of this month. And, once all this is completed.... my office is moving to another location - still in Tempe - in the middle of October. I told them I had to be on the 'move committee' cause I like to know what is going on. LOL I was the first one to sign up. It looks like a nice place, but it is in an industrial park. I take my lunch most days so it's not a problem for me that restaurants are a little bit away from the area. Doesn't bother me.

I am so far behind here at work - Corporate upgraded our computers a few weeks ago - since that time, I have been unable to download any of my audio tapes from meetings on to the computer so that I can transcribe. I have jumped through hoops, written emails, gone to the proper people, but as of last Friday, the approval still had not come through and I'm stuck.

If I try to transcribe from the device, every time I have to back up, it will go back to the beginning of the tape. But, it will soon reach the point where I will have to. I have to get my minutes completed for the August meetings. I have 5 big ones in the line up right now that I need to transcribe. Thank goodness I only have one meeting this week that I need to tape, and one I just go to - and no meetings next week. Hopefully I will be able to get all my transcription done.

Well - it's that time already - my boss is in, and after catching up from the weekend... it's time to get to work. Hope that you all have a great day!


Friday, July 17, 2015

Interesting Concepts.....

I helped out a new friend the other night. I was asked to pass out flyers for a 'Love Debate' that this new friend was on the panel of. I agreed to do it and was there on time to get the flyers and start distributing them around. The new friend had already shared with me that 'we don't bring God or anything about religion into this'. I found that interesting that he even shared that comment with me.

Anyway - the entire evening left me bewildered at what this world is coming to - or has come to. There were five panelists. An author (29 year old woman); a female producer (Survivor, etc.), my new friend (male, PhD, author, helps people find their 'soul mate'), another author (female, wrote a book about love affirmations), and a guy that I have no clue what he does. I suppose I could google him, but who cares.... I found the entire evening interesting, amusing and shaking my head.

When you hear the word 'debate', what do you think of? I think of a good discussion about whatever the topic is. Well, this was a 'love debate'.... so my thought was a situation would be brought up from the audience and then the panel would discuss the best way to deal with it. This didn't happen.

There were about 50 women of all ages - 20's to 60's. I had to laugh.... the dress code was 'wear what you would wear to your first date'. All sizes and all shapes. WHERE in the world did some of these people think they were going??? Some were dressed appropriately, I felt, but seriously? Short shorts? The men (about 10 of them, ages 30 - 50 I'd guess) were dressed in nice slacks and a shirt. They must have gotten the email.

I got a massage last night and was told I had a lot of knots in my neck. Could it have been from me shaking my head at all this 'stuff'? LOL

To make a long story short, this was the worst 'debate' I had ever seen. Nearly 99% said they are on a social media site to 'date'. Many complaints from women centered around why 'guys won't ask for your telephone number or call for a second date', to some flirting gimmick of sticking your tongue out at the opposite sex to let them know you are interested (seriously?), to why does a guy 'disappear' after 3 months of steady dating with no explanation. For an hour and a half, these things - and others - were briefly - very briefly - brought up, but never discussed in detail. (I still can't get over the tongue thing.)

I learned a lot the other night. I learned I am grateful I have no interest in that "world" these people live in. I am grateful I am married and not involved with dating. I am a person of value and I think I can honestly say, I would never, ever, ever, ever, share information that these women - and men - shared. It was an experience, and yes, I did tell my friend that next year when they do this again, that I would be willing to help distribute flyers and sign people up afterwards to work with him on finding their soul mate.

I couldn't tell you how he does this. He said something about 'rewiring' how you think about 'love' and 'life'. I don't know.

I did tell my friend (who apparently is not a Christian), that if he would bring God into the picture and share with everyone about the love that God has for us individually, and how He will provide all that they are seeking for (and not finding in relationships -if they get them at all), that the entire theater would have been packed out. His comment to me? "Yeah, but it wouldn't work with this group."

That is probably a true statement because these people don't know God - or have walked away from Him. They don't understand that they don't have to give up their lifestyle - the parties, the drinking, the running around - God doesn't set requirements BEFORE He loves you. He loves you right where you are. But when you accept Jesus into your heart and ask Him to guide and direct your path, you love Him so much you WANT to give up these things because you want to follow Him and receive all that He has for you. He won't turn you away just because you smoke, or drink, or runaround. He will gather you into His arms, and love you, right where you are. You will give things up over time, because you love Him.

Women and men both want to love and be loved. But often they look 'in the wrong places' - just like the song. I've lived that crazy life. It wasn't that much fun. I often look back and shake my head at the stupidity of the things I did. And God loved me right where I was. I ran to Him in desperation, and He gathered me into His arms, and healed my heart.

And He will do that for you. Life isn't perfect, by any means. We all struggle with so many different things. My life is not like yours, and yours is not like mine. Both of us are probably saying "thank goodness". But the best thing I ever did was turn to God and seek His face. In return, He gave me His heart.

It doesn't get any better than that.


Monday, July 6, 2015

It's All About Choices......

Pastor Lori spoke at our church yesterday and it was a very good message. This month the church is doing the "at the movies" type theme, taking movies and showing how we can see Jesus in them. I have to admit I usually stay away from movies 'at the movies' cause I don't like violence, and I don't like language, and I don't like some of the scenes..... but the movie bits shown yesterday were not bad, and in fact, I have thought about renting the movie when it is out. One of the things Pastor Lori brought out is that our lives are made from the choices we make.

That is big.

My life is full of wrong choices - and right choices. Hopefully, more right than wrong. But the movie itself gave me thought.... do I weigh the choices I make - to determine if they are the right choices for me - and for others - or do I just make the choice because I can?

Do I make choices that are beneficial to me and to my family?

I can't think of the name of the movie but it is A Hundred Feet or something like that. Go watch it and think about the choices made....

Do you hold grudges and hang on to bitterness and anger?

What is your choice for today? I've said often "I choose my battles" when it comes to certain things. I usually lose those battles so I choose carefully which ones are important to me.

So what choices are important to you - and to your family?

Are you making the right choice?

Think about it.