A small life, I won’t have

A quiet life, yes. But not a small one.

A quality life, yes. But not a boring one.

A quickened life, yes. Not a depressed one.

He came to bring life, and life to the full. The abundant. A life filled with joy. A life covered in peace, where the anxiety is drowned out, seeped over the edges, and buried far below the surface of the earth and destroyed by lava.

Haha seriously though. When Jesus enters into your heart, there is no room for both anxiety and His peace to reign. So anxiety isn’t just covered up with a band-aid. It’s swallowed up and disappeared. It’s evaporated. It’s dead and gone. It’s no more!

The peace of God reigns forever, and is always available to those who earnestly seek the Lord and ask Him for it! That is a prayer that God forever answers so quickly.

Ask God for peace, and His peace, which surpasses all understanding will guard your hearts and minds in Christ Jesus. Philippians 4:7

Ohhh yes Lord. I thank you for this beautiful autumn day. The leaves are extra-crunchy out there. The sky has a few fluffy clouds, but the sky has a blue background. My windows are open to the elements and it was really lovely to hear so many bird songs right outside. Creation is alive and giving thanks to You, our great, omnipotent God!

Omnipotent: all-powerful

This was the attribute that we relayed to the children at bible study this week. God, you are SO powerful! To be able to speak life into existence with one Word. We are surely in awe of You.

~*~

Thank you for hearing our prayers and for answering them. Thank you for your Faithfulness every day and for your provision, understanding, comfort, healing, gifts, presence, and great love. Thank you for being a servant-leader and leading by example. Oh, how we seek to honor you and desire you above all things, almighty God, our Rock and Redeemer.

Thank you for another day. Lord, direct my thoughts, words and deeds this day, for your glory. Amen

<3

xxx

V

Trusting You For This Day

Lord,

It’s like this. Whatever it is that you’ve called me to do this day, I shall do it. And not resent it. I shall happily accept whatever it is that you have laid before me, that you have put on my plate, with joy.

I will not be bitter.

I will not complain.

I will not wish I were elsewhere or cry out “why is this happening to me?”

I will not let my feelings govern my steps. I will not keep using the excuse “I don’t feel like it”.

Instead of repeating “I’m so tired”, I will change it to “I’m SO thankful”.

Lord turn my grumblings into gratitude.

from Panera. but cut like a heart <3 🙂

Help me be more forgiving of other people and see them through Your lens of compassion.

Oh, to have a Love like Yours.

Oh, to know You and be known by You.

What a privilege. What an honor.

Lord, in actuality, there are no words to describe what a gift. What a joy divine.

Leaning on the everlasting arms.

All I can do is worship.

“Everlasting Arms” by Iris DeMent

What a fellowship, what a joy divine,
Leaning on the everlasting arms;
What a blessedness, what a peace is mine,
Leaning on the everlasting arms.
Leaning, leaning,
Safe and secure from all alarms;
Leaning, leaning,
Leaning on the everlasting arms.
Oh, how sweet to walk in this pilgrim way,
Leaning on the everlasting arms;
Oh, how bright the path grows from day to day,
Leaning on the everlasting arms.
Leaning, leaning,
Safe and secure from all alarms;
Leaning, leaning,
Leaning on the everlasting arms.
What have I to dread, what have I to fear,
Leaning on the everlasting arms;
I have blessed peace with my Lord so near,
Leaning on the everlasting arms.
Leaning, leaning,
Safe and secure from all alarms;
Leaning, leaning,

Leaning on the everlasting arms.

Go and trust Him today. He is making you into a saint today. He is working to make you holy. In His perfect time, at His deliberate pace. Trust Him.

<3

Love you all!

xxx

V

thank you

for the rain

that brings a grey shadow to my windows

and make the flowers grow

while I sleep a bit longer

zinnia

and I thank you

for all the challenges that are presented day to day

in word and deed

that cause me to grow

bigger than this mushroom

look at dis fatty

okay, maybe not physically

not physically growing (I hope)

but in the capacity to love (yes)

and forgive (also yes)

and endure

and not grow weary in doing good works

but [learning to] encourag[e] each other

and all the more

as the day approaches (Hebrews 10:24-25)

(good segway into announcing that I’m getting married)

grateful for this man

far beyond grateful, in actuality

for all that he is

all that he brings

pure, solid gold

and glittering fruits

that color my world

and for time

precious time

to reflect, refresh, and be restored

like this day

where I write and ponder and relish

on all of God’s goodness to me

His faithfulness to me

His love for me

and I rest in this Truth:

“Therefore, since we are receiving a kingdom that cannot be shaken, let us be thankful, and so worship God acceptably with reverence and awe” Hebrews 12:28

xxx <3 V

“I can’t do it”

I’m positive that we all have a long list of things that we can’t do.

It’s tempting to focus on this list, especially when it affects us and our lives directly.

For example, sometimes I can’t walk down the stairs normally because my knee swells up. It’s a little bit tempting to throw myself a pity party or allow myself to become angry or discouraged by my limitation.

The reality is, my knee is in this state at this time and I must bear the consequences. It won’t do me much good to sit around and contemplate my limitations, oft becoming more and more discouraged.

It’s always healthier to focus on what we can do.

I can encourage people. Instead of sitting around focusing on being discouraged the Lord used me to encourage somebody. It went like this:

She needed a hug. It was painted into her expressions and the way her shoulders slumped. “Well, back to work I go”. Eeyore had taken over her body and a full-size donkey-of-a-woman stood in her place; on hind legs.

Give her a hug was the nudge that I felt from el Señor, Holy Spirit.

I hesitated and when she left the room I mentioned that I thought I should have hugged her to the other person in the room.

“Oh, yes! Definitely hug her!” was her response. So I decided to hug her when I left.

A few minutes later I walked upstairs and said “hey, I just wanted to give you a hug!”

Within a couple minutes she was crying and saying how encouraged she felt. I felt the presence of the Lord very strongly and we were both laughing and ministering to each other for over an hour.

I felt the joy of the Lord so strongly during that hour of fellowship. She thanked me for “being obedient to the Holy Spirit” and confessed that she had felt spiritually down and dark all weekend. By the time our conversation was over, her affect had changed completely. It was as though life had been breathed into her. That’s what encouragement is.

Don’t have a VW bug, but a VW mug is pretty cool 😛

It’s so tempting to focus on ourselves constantly. Which, in my opinion, is pretty depressing. A better place to enlist my focus is on the Maker of all things. The Father of all, Creator of All, Ultimate Guide, Wise King and Lover of my soul. Wow. What a better thing to be focused on! I can’t think of anything better.

Adrian Rogers once said “to rejoice is a choice”. So choose joy. The best way to do this is to keep your eyes and ears open for the leading of Jesus. God doesn’t look for perfect people to carry out His work. In fact, there is no one perfect but God, Jesus Christ and the Holy Spirit. God has always used the fools to shame the wise.

So give Him the glory today!!!!!!!!!!!!

<3

xxx

Like this post if it encouraged you! Leave a comment below saying how God used you when you didn’t feel fit to be used.

Dementia

Good morning, midday or evening to whomever you are, wherever you are. I’m writing from a little cubicle-like 2-person booth at a Panera bread across from a well-educated world traveler. We’re both wearing glasses and have cups of hot coffee in front of us, and even went as far as to order the same breakfast. A bacon, scrambled egg, lettuce and tomato wrap. It’s Monday morning at 10:28am and we’re ready to carpe this diem!

What to do when I’m alongside this new friend of mine is always a mystery. A lottery of the will, really. Whatever she feels like doing in combination with what I feel like doing is what we do. To put that in simpler terms, if I think of something that I want to do, and happen to suggest it in just the right way to get her to agree to this plan, then we’ll do it. Presentation is everything. But if I present the activity in the wrong manner, she will have no interest or desire to join me.

For example. If I say “do you want to go to the movies?” she will promptly say “no”. However, if I say “Oh, wow!! There are actually quite a few decent movies playing right now!” Then her interest will be piqued and I can suggest a title or two and read the descriptions. At that point when her eyebrows are arching and her mouth turns into a slight frown as she contemplates the veracity of how cunning and appealing the descriptions really are, I lead with “I don’t know… do you wanna try it?”. Works every time.

When I want to go for a walk, I say “I’m going for a walk” and then proceed to start getting ready for said walk. She may automatically say “well I’m pissed and do not feel like going for a walk” or she may say nothing at all; but regardless of her response, after a moment or two, I invite her along for the walk with these words: “you’re welcome to come on the walk if you’d like! I’m just going around the block”. At which point she’ll say “oh, sure, I could use the exercise” and proceed to get ready for the walk herself.

Sometimes she just wants to be heard. Sometimes she just wants to go through all of the different thoughts in her head and then say “okay, so what’s the plan?” at which point I’ll respond differently, but usually in ways like this:

“To be honest, I have no plan! I’m just going to find some food at some point! And I have some things I can do. But if you want to do anything, just let me know! See, my friend here doesn’t want to feel like I’m taking care of her. She wants me to be a comrade. She probably would prefer if I were a coworker. She misses her company so much. She misses working so much. And business meetings. And lunch meetings. And setting up new contracts. And facilitating. She did it for 30+ years and had to stop two years go when the dementia set in.

She is stressed out. She’s in a new location and has a new occupation. She wants to be working but it was stripped away from her. The disease stripped her job away from her. Her purpose, as she understands it. Now she spends obscene amounts of time worrying about her company, her 3 different houses and condos, and she worries about why she isn’t in them. She becomes angry over her presence in her daughter’s house and refuses to accept it as her new reality.

All I can do is try to take care of her well. To do things that are good for her body, mind and soul. She loves walking, but won’t agree to it often. Yet when she’s out there doing it, she’s at peace. She loves observing people and engaging with them. She loves analyzing people and trying to understand them. She is very caring and compassionate and cares about justice.

We cannot begin to understand why some people get dementia, and we certainly can’t understand how to help people recover. The best way to treat a person with dementia is with patience and love. You can’t get mad at someone with dementia for asking the same question 100 times in an hour. Or for feeding their cat 4 times in 10 minutes. A sickness is a sickness. A disease is a disease.

So I do what I can. I treat her with respect and try to think of ways to take care of her as best as I can. So we go to Panera. And we do fun things that she enjoys. And we laugh. And I listen to her stories, over and over again. And I listen with interest. And respond with love. And we live one day at a time. One hour at a time. Just trying to savor the moments. Together. She is a person.

Treating people with dignity is the only way to go. No matter how different they are, how much older or younger. What color their skin is. Where they’ve been or where they’re trying to go. Whether they’re sick, disabled, homeless, an ex-gang member, a christian, an atheist, man, woman, child. We are to treat people with love. Dementia doesn’t change that.

The vehicle that dignity drives is love. Love and dignity and respect go together. These three things make life a much more vivid, colorful, warm experience.

xoxox

<3

V

If you don’t know where God wants you…

If you don’t know where God wants you… Watch this video to find out God’s will for you life. The peace of God directs us! Praying for God’s peace.

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If You Really Trust God…

If you really trust God… trusting God is easier said than done! Especially when the going gets tough! Watch to be encouraged!

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The Only Thing You Can Control

The only thing you can control is your response.

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When God takes your peace, LISTEN

When God takes your peace, LISTEN

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Sin Spreads to Unlikely Places

Sin spreads to unlikely places.

Get right with God and seek reconciliation, repentance, forgiveness.

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