Hearts full of pride

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I love this story of the bible:
Early in the morning He came again into the temple, and all the people were coming to Him; and He sat down and began to teach them. The scribes and the Pharisees brought a woman caught in adultery, and having set her in the center of the court, they said to Him, “Teacher, this woman has been caught in adultery, in the very act. Now in the Law Moses commanded us to stone such women; what then do You say?” They were saying this, testing Him, so that they might have grounds for accusing Him. But Jesus stooped down and with His finger wrote on the ground. But when they persisted in asking Him, He straightened up, and said to them, “He who is without sin among you, let him be the first to throw a stone at her.” Again He stooped down and wrote on the ground. When they heard it, they began to go out one by one, beginning with the older ones, and He was left alone, and the woman, where she was, in the center of the court. Straightening up, Jesus said to her, “Woman, where are they? Did no one condemn you?” She said, “No one, Lord.” And Jesus said, “I do not condemn you, either. Go. From now on sin no more.” (John 8:1-11)

I don’t think we really know what Jesus was writing in the dirt?? Maybe he was writing the sins of the others in the crowd or maybe he was just drawing attention away from the woman who was probably half dressed?? We all judge others. I am guilty as charged. I catch myself assuming things about people and judging at first glance, then I have to remind myself of the plank in my own eye. The problem is, it is not wrong to judge BUT judging with blind, hypocritical, self-righteousness that overlooks your own faults while pointing out others faults is wrong. If we have too much pride in our heart we tend to see faults in others while we are just blind to our own faults. God just wants us to judge purely.
“The Lord abhors honest scales, but accurate weights are his delight” Proverbs 11:1.

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Do we ever listen?

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Being still is so hard, at least for me it is. I am not talking about physically still. I am talking about mentally still. We talk and talk and talk. Not just with our mouth but in our head.
We talk when we pray… we try to be still but out head is talking about worry. It is talking about worldly things. It is talking about selfish things. Do we ever listen? We need to be still in our heart and in our mind to hear God. We find him in our stillness. We need to drop our hands, relax and reflect on what God can do for us that we cannot do for ourselves, give him thanks and listen…

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I don’t know any perfect people

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Recently I had the pleasure of spending a weekend away with some ladies that I love… the kind of people that I feel safe sharing my past with and never feel judged! Yes those rare few that we find in life. One of our discussions was…” If we could change our past would we”? The majority of us of us said NO. We did all agree that we never wanted to be put “through the ringer” again like we all have at some point in our lives but our past, the good and the ugly made us who we are. I still do not understand how any person can go through a trial in life and not have compassion for another “in the same boat” so to speak. Maybe I will never understand that. I do know that most of the people that I am closest to, have been broken and are imperfect just like myself but they are perfect to me and God loves them all the same!

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Let Go let God

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Are you ever scared that God might ask too much of you? What is too much? Our lives revolve around people and things we adore: our spouse, our children, our friends, work and hobbies, material things, and making future plans. And if our “comfortable life” is interrupted, we sometimes feel as though our life is falling apart. But there are times when God says “Let go!” and the strings that tie our lives together suddenly snap. If you’ve ever been in situation you know the disruption can test our faith!

God wants you and me to hold all of these things “loosely”. To help us with this, He gives us tests. He will test your obedience and your commitment to him. If you pass His tests, He will bless your life greatly!

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” A smile is a curve that sets everything straight”

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Put a smile on your face! Smile at a stranger near you. Smile at someone in the car next to you. See how many smiles you get back! A smile is as contagious as yawning! It is proven that a smile causes a reaction in your brain that releases feel good chemicals into your body….which makes your mood more positive! it is also a gift you can give that is absolutely FREE!

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Smiles for You

Smiling is infectious; you catch it like the flu,

When someone smiled at me today, I started smiling too.

I passed around the corner and someone saw my grin

When he smiled I realized I’d passed it on to him.

I thought about that smile then I realized its worth,

A single smile, just like mine, could travel round the earth.

So, if you feel a smile begin, don’t leave it undetected

Let’s start an epidemic quick, and get the world infected!

~ Anonymous

I Have got it all together!

I Have got it all together!

Just so everybody knows..” I’ve got it all together”… I mean besides the fact, I always have piles of laundry, when one junk pile gets too high, I create junk baskets, my car looks like it is lived in and my keys are usually locked in it. I need a helmet when I open my kitchen cabinets, I debate on whether or not to give my iron to a homeless person( I promise they would find better use for it) I often make two or three trips back inside my house to get what I forgot including my phone which is on my ear or my sunglasses which are in my head! I back into things like mail boxes, scooters and other cars. Hmm… I was kidding, I don’t have it all together! I thank God for his grace , mercy and steadfast love. There was a time when I kept everything “perfect” and I was so occupied by “maintaining” that it was hard to hear Gods voice. I wanted things to be perfect before I had guests over. But think about it, we did not invite God after everything was perfect, we invited him so that everything can be made perfect. So I invite people into my not so perfect life. Come join me for a meal, a cup of coffee or a back porch chat…just don’t open my cabinets and park your car far away from behind my van!!

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More than just a cup of joe

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How wonderful to have friends that love at all times!

Studies show that women who spend quality time with friends are happier, healthier and live longer. No matter if you are married, single, divorced, work full time or you are a home maker. Spending time  ( real time not cyber time) with friends makes you a better wife, a better mother and makes your job less stressful. They say women speak about 13,000 more words a day than men! So I have to say, after spending time with a friend, my husband is happy that by the time he gets home from work… we are at an equal level with our chatter.. :)! The problem is with such crazy busy lives we have a hard time “making the time”.  No matter how busy you are, make some of your coffee breaks more than just a ” cup of Joe”… sip it with a friend!

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I found this quote below somewhere and love the truth in it….I couldn’t say it better myself…

“Just spending a little time with someone shows that you care, shows that they are important enough that you’ve chosen — out of all the things to do on your busy schedule — to find the time for them. And if you go beyond that, and truly connect with them, through good conversation, that says even more. Many times its our actions, not just our words, that really speak what our hearts feel.”

Loving the unlovable

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We all have people in our lives who “make it hard to love them”. Some people are easy to love and embrace your love and willingly love back. Some people are guarded and make it more difficult. There are times when I think…Maybe I should just stop trying or “walk away”. There are times that I have done this in my life. There times when it is very clear that God wants me to keep trying and reaching out and loving those who make make it so hard.

Remember this:

“God demonstrates his own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us” Romans 5:8

If we wait to Love others until they get their act all together, if we wait until they deserve to be loved – we will have a loooong wait. If God can love me and and if God can love you in spite of our imperfections – then we can love others, even the challenging ones.

So the first step I take to” loving the unlovable” is remembering Gods love and the love from my friends and family for me when I am unlovable. (true story)

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“Embracing 38”

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“Embracing 38”

I know 38 is not a significant birthday and it is not OLD, but it is almost four decades and this is my last year to be 29 before I turn 39 for the next 10 years. As I think about getting older I can’t help but to think .. Other than “gravity”, wrinkles, crinkly knee caps, grey hair sprouts, mood swings, sleep deprivation and memory loss … I really am embracing getting older or should I say growing wiser…

As we grow wiser…

God gives us wisdom and grace so that we can pass the same wisdom on to others and show them grace. We understand (although we may not always like it) that God allows struggles in our lives to keep us closer to him and prepare us to handle the “seemingly” unbearable struggles in our future.

As we grow wiser …

We find that we need much less now to keep us happy. We appreciate our children, family and friends more. With tragedies and struggles we have endured we can really appreciate life more and enjoy “the moment” unlike we did as young adults.  We can step outside our comfort zone and realize we don’t have to be in control and something wonderful may happen. We realize we will not be arrested for letting the laundry pile up. We will leave dishes in the sink to meet a friend or our husband for an ” unplanned lunch date”.  We say YES even if we are busy, to meet a friend in need or meet a friend we need. We realize the importance of having true, loving friends, less friends of course, but those true friends that we know will be there for us no matter what and we so lovingly will do the same for them.

As we grow wiser…

We learn to listen more and judge less . We discover that giving is way more rewarding than receiving . We do not struggle with envy as we did some as  younger adults, we have discovered that those who ” have what we want” also “want what we have” or “want what someone else has”. We discover The grass is NOT greener on the other side. We don’t always get what we pray for but in the end we get something better. We learn to take ownership for our own actions regardless of our past and how we were treated or not treated. We understand the world really does not owe us anything.

As we grow wiser…

We learn that to forgive does not mean we have to condone a person’s behavior but it frees our own hearts from hurt and bitterness. Time does not heal but forgiveness does. We finally find that “filter” that used to not exist.. You know… the one between our brain and our tongue?! It still gets lost or goes on vacation at times and we may have an occasional small “tongue bleed” from biting it, but that filter is there more often than not.

As we grow wiser…

We are ok with the fact that some people will not like us, will misunderstand us or judge us unfairly and we understand that this is just a hard part of life, God knows what is in our hearts. We try not to strive for perfection in ourselves, but strive to be the person God wants us to be (although we fail often.. we are human) We can relate to, love and embrace people who have been broken. We can relate to their struggles and their trust in God that made them whole again. They fall into our hearts and forever stay there. We are able to see pain inside a person without them even saying a word. We understand empathy and sympathy. We discover the spiritual gift of mercy which is a wonderful gift!

As we grow wiser…

We think about the many stages of our children’s lives from inhaling our newborns sweet smell to Saturday morning snuggles, cinnamon rolls in bed and cartoons with our babies, to mall shopping , pedicures and passenger riding ( yikes) with our teens, to apartment shopping, discussing college life and fun adult time with our young adult children. We indulge in simple dates with our husbands that end at 9 p.m. Sometimes dinner and a movie turns into dinner or a movie! A quiet long soak in the tub is sometimes better than a vacation. There is no packing involved!

What I want for the next half of my life….

I do want to live here on this imperfect earth for a long enough time to see my girls grow up, get married and start families. I want to play with and love my grandchildren, give them junk food that I never let my own kids eat and spend my evenings overlooking the lake in my rocker next to my (retired) soul mate, my first and only love of my life… but I have a calmness and less of a fear about death knowing that this is just my temporary home. I have been accused of being an ” old soul” and that is ok with me. I will admit when I look in the church pamphlet I get excited about upcoming ladies events and then I realize it is for the 50+ group…I often wondered if they would notice me slipping in?! I find myself with a weird smiling grin when I see a bunch of grey haired ladies all knitting in a group. I want to touch as many lives as I can while I’m here. I understand the seasons of life so much better now! So to all of you who fret getting older…. It’s not so bad, embrace it! Step outside your comfort zone. Let people in! Love the people you have because God will want them back some day! So for now I am embracing 38!

“For you, O LORD, have made me glad by your work; at the works of you hands I sing for joy”

Psalm 9 2:4

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