Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Your future starts today

Much as the future began yesterday, today is your opportunity to do what you couldn't do yesterday. You have an opportunity to start over today...it's the last day of the first half of this year.


I'll share some quotes I found when preparing for this piece and tell you what I think


  1. “When it comes to the future, there are three kinds of people: those who let it happen, those who make it happen, and those who wonder what happened.” John M. Richardson, Jr. No matter how well intentioned everyone around you is, what you don't do for yourself stays undone...
  2. “Losers live in the past. Winners learn from the past and enjoy working in the present toward the future.” Denis Waitley Success is sometimes not appreciated by itself - it shines with failure as its backdrop. The book "Failing forward" by John Maxwell is quite an eye-opener - I recommend that you read it.

Monday, June 28, 2010

Raising successful children...

When I read this quote this morning, it tied is nicely with the last post...even though the title of this post is the opposite.

There are two lasting bequests we can hope to give our children.
One of these is roots; the other wings.
~ Hodding Carter

Indeed, our children must be rooted as we train them in the way to go; be an example.

We should also be courageous enough to "let go" and let them make their own decisions, and possibly mistakes, as the grow and mature. Just support them with prayers and provide Godly counsel as needed - the priviledge and responsibility to train another human being is not one to be taken lightly. Keep in constant touch with the One Who knows the end from the beginning and Who knows the future He has planned.  God bless.

Friday, June 25, 2010

I don’t want to raise successful children by Lysa TerKeurst

Proverbs 22:6 {NIV}Train a child in the way he should go, and when he is old he will not turn from it.

I don't want to raise successful children. That's a shocking thing to read, and a shocking thing for a mother to type. So, let me clarify.

I used to define success according to my child's report card. Good grades and academic achievement would surely equal a good child with great potential in this world. But then several of my children wound up being average students with average grades. Though we carted them off to tutors and spent many a late night at the kitchen table helping them, they remained average. And I remained concerned and frustrated.

One report card day I found myself facedown in the fibers of my carpet crying and wondering, "Where have I gone wrong as a mom?"

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

The Mayonnaise Jar (author unknown)

Someone just shared this with me...it's too good to keep to myself...be blessed and challenged as you read...

The Mayonnaise Jar (author unknown)
When things in your life seem almost too much to handle, when 24 hours in a day is not enough; remember the mayonnaise jar.

A professor stood before his philosophy class and had some items in front of him...
When the class began, wordlessly; he picked up a very large and empty mayonnaise jar and starts to fill it with Golf Balls.



He then asked the students if the jar was full. They agreed that it was.

The professor then picked up a box of Pebbles and poured it into the jar. He shook the jar lightly. The Pebbles rolled into the open areas between the Golf Balls.

He then asked the students again if the jar was full. They agreed it was.


Monday, June 21, 2010

Get HEELS

Ok, I’m on a roll - getting colour (peppers), going green (tea), stepping up (HEELS) - catch me if you can…

After trying (and writing about) various colours of bell pepper and green tea, I started thinking some more about my health – and yours. Knowing how “acronymic” (is that a real word?) I am  - ok “creative” is also a nice word and captures the essence of what I’m trying to say. Well, just came up with a new one: HEELS. I've read and know about divine inspiration (the Bible was written by divine inspiration!) but I’m learning a lot and appreciating this verse more and more with the challenges of ministering through a blog.

Job 32:8 But there is a spirit in man: and the inspiration of the Almighty giveth them understanding. (KJV)

I’m sure you also appreciate how everything we have on this blog is truly inspired by God – to Him be all the glory. Ok back to our HEELS...

Friday, June 18, 2010

Secret #6: Connection in your community

This includes your neighbourhood, church, office and other social networks.

I’d like to start this off with this popular story

Luke 10:29-37 (The Message)
Looking for a loophole, he asked, "And just how would you define 'neighbor'?" Jesus answered by telling a story:
"There was once a man traveling from Jerusalem to Jericho. On the way he was attacked by robbers. They took his clothes, beat him up, and went off leaving him half-dead. Luckily, a priest was on his way down the same road, but when he saw him he angled across to the other side. Then a Levite religious man showed up; he also avoided the injured man. "A Samaritan traveling the road came on him. When he saw the man's condition, his heart went out to him. He gave him first aid, disinfecting and bandaging his wounds. Then he lifted him onto his donkey, led him to an inn, and made him comfortable. In the morning he took out two silver coins and gave them to the innkeeper, saying, 'Take good care of him. If it costs any more, put it on my bill—I'll pay you on my way back.'

"What do you think? Which of the three became a neighbor to the man attacked by robbers?" "The one who treated him kindly," the religion scholar responded.

Jesus said, "Go and do the same."

I guess there's not much more can be said...go and do the same in your community...God will show the people in need once you choose not to look away. God bless

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

The future

I don't know about you but as I get older...ok, as my children get older, I think some more about their future and mine of course. A few years ago, one of our children asked if they could inherit our home after we died...talk about advance planning. Well, I promptly responded that long before we die, he'd be in a position to own his own home.

Sometimes the future seems so far out there, but with the recent economic melt-down that defrosted quite a number of retirees' income, it's never too soon to think about the future - yours and your children's. You know when I think about it, "the best thing about the future is that it comes only one day at a time”*, otherwise it will be quite overwhelming.

My husband had an nice email sign off - "The future starts today. How am I using it?" It was quite the wake-up call knowing that "every tomorrow has two handles. We can take hold of it with the handle of anxiety or the handle of faith.”**

Monday, June 14, 2010

Walk on water

I was listening to the radio yesterday and heard a bit of this song: Walk on Water by Britt Nicole. Britt Nicole was interviewed and she shared how she was inspired to write this song. She wrote it because her mother had a dream to set up a girls' home. After years of  waiting for the right time not sure if she could do it (sound familiar?), she (her mother) finally stepped out of her comfort zone and set it up. Britt went on to share the transformation that has occurred in the lives of different girls. She mentioned how one of the girls Heather is going into college soon and yet about a year ago, Heather was homeless and hopeless. She went on to encourage us all to "Step out. even when it’s storming" - once God has laid something in our heart.

Indeed, I know from personal experience that you never know which "Heather" is waiting for you to obey the Master's call to walk on water (which is one of the reasons behind this blog - because we never know who the word is for - we just share in faith what God lays in our hearts). You know, it was stormy when Peter walked on water...he cried out for help, he made history...so can you.

I searched and got the lyrics off the internet...be blessed & empowered to walk on water as you read on...

Secret #6: Connection - Life connections

Gary Smalley said: Life is relationships; the rest is just details. I'm sure you agree with him or at least will by the time we're done with this piece. Encarta's definition of relationship should help too: "a significant connection or similarity between two or more things, or the state of being related to something else."

We're all related or connected to someone or something...by birth, association, marriage, employment and so on which is why this quote is valuable in guiding us in our "life connections:

“Relationships-of all kinds-are like sand held in your hand. Held loosely, with an open hand, the sand remains where it is. The minute you close your hand and squeeze tightly to hold on, the sand trickles through your fingers. You may hold onto some of it, but most will be spilled. A relationship is like that. Held loosely, with respect and freedom for the other person, it is likely to remain intact. But hold too tightly, too possessively, and the relationship slips away and is lost.” (Author unknown)

According to Brian Tracy, and I couldn't agree more, “The glue that holds all relationships together - including the relationship between the leader and the led is trust, and trust is based on integrity.”

Friday, June 11, 2010

Many faces of TLC...


"Here she comes again - with another TLA" - did I perchance read your mind? Ok I'll break them down one at a time. TLA stands for "Three Letter Abbreviation". Have you noticed that in some places - church, office, schools etc there are so many TLAs or acroymns that it almost feels like you need to expand (or is it contract) your vocabulary to speak their lingo. Some common TLAs or acroymns include: PTA, JFK, CIA, CFO. CEO, CIO, COC, LOL, USD, GHA, PDA, WoW (I hope you know that one)

Where am I going with this? Obviously further away from the topic...so let's quickly retrace our steps.

I recently celebrated my wedding anniversary...it was humbling and also "alarming" (for want of a better word) to realize that I had lasted this long in marriage and above all, I am still happy and fulfilled. I cannot truly say I was happy each and every day of the months and years that have rolled by but God has always been my buffer. Thank God for the Holy Spirit Who lifts my spirits up - which was why I started thinking about writing this piece and remembered an email a dear friend sent to me.

Thursday, June 10, 2010

Don't wait for Mr Right...

Growing up and looking forward to being married, my peers and I always commented about looking for Mr Right. When I became a christian, the question then became: "how do I know Mr Right?" Of course, the  married people used to say - "you will know" or "God will speak to you". I eventually found the second response to be more accurate in my case and we've talked about how to hear from God in a previous posting...so that's not where I'm going.

In waiting to get married, one thing I didn't do was have a "MrRightometer" - I wondered about 1 or 2 guys but didn't dwell on them - ok, maybe I thought a bit about if they were prospects but moved on quickly. I was more interested in living and having a fulfilled life - and that paid off. If you're not complete, happy and fulfilled as a single person, I can assure you that marriage won't bring you any more happiness, fulfillment or completeness. Marriage is a wonderful institution but only God brings fulfillment not any man or woman.

Secret #6: Connection - Friendship - An Addendum

I can attest to the fact that Sapphire loves (and is an embodiment of) true friendship. After reading her posting, I did a quick a re-appraisal of my friends and myself as a friend (an ongoing exercise…). In addition, I quickly checked my Power Bible software for Friendship quotations. I have extracted 12 precious golden nuggets on FRIENDSHIP

1.No distance of place or lapse of time can lessen the friendship of those who are thoroughly persuaded of each other's worth. -Anonymous
2.Insomuch as any one pushes you nearer to God, he or she is your friend. -Anonymous
3.The strength and sweetness of friendship depend on sincerity tempered by sympathy. -Anonymous
4.What is a friend? A single soul dwelling in two bodies. -Aristotle
5.Friendship is in loving rather than in being loved. -Bridges
6.Chance makes our parents, but choice makes our friends. -Delille
7.The only way to have a friend is to be one. -Emerson
8.It is possible for two people who have wide differences of preference and opinion, of habits, of teaching, of training, of background and belief to enjoy the company of each other in many ways. Indeed, a diversity of friendships is one of life's real enrichments. To learn of the goodness of those who are unlike-their worth, their sincerity, their good hearts, their good minds, their good company-is rich and rewarding. It is wonderful to have a wide range of choice friends who can be counted on, friends who can be enjoyed and loved and trusted. Such is the meaning of friendship. -Evans
9.The difficulty is not so great to die for a friend, as to find a friend worth dying for. -Home
10.Those are our best friends in whose presence we are able to be our best selves. -Kohler
11.Rare as is true love, true friendship is rarer. -Fontaine
12.A friend will be sure to act the part of an advocate before he will assume that of a judge. -South

Tuesday, June 8, 2010

Secret #6: Connection - Friendship

As you may have realised, friendship is very important to me - I always find a way to get to it. Ask Beryl and my other friends (if you know them), once you become my friend, you're "IT". I have seen (& been) the value in good friendship - ok that's enough. I've said quite a bit on friendship already and in prior postings so I'll just share what other people have said:

Friends are the most important ingredient in this recipe of life. ~ sent by Dior Yamasaki to a Friendship quotes site

A new friendship is like an unripened fruit - it may become either an orange or a lemon. ~ Emma Stacey
Sapphire's comment: You can use either to make orange juice or lemonade - they are both very "good" for you.

A friend can tell you things you don't want to tell yourself. ~Frances Ward Weller

A friend accepts us as we are yet helps us to be what we should. ~Author Unknown

My best friend is the one who brings out the best in me. ~ Henry Ford

A friend is someone who understands your past, believes in your future, and accepts you just the way you are. ~ Author unknown

Friendship is a pretty full-time occupation if you really are friendly with somebody. You can’t have too many friends because then you’re just not really friends. ~Author Unknown

True friendship is like sound health; the value of it is seldom known until it be lost. ~ Charles Caleb Colton

Hold a true friend with both your hands. ~Nigerian Proverb

Friends are God's way of taking care of us. ~Author Unknown

Can you believe that a man said: “The loneliest woman in the world is a woman without a close woman friend.” (George Santayana - The Life of Reason, 1905-1906) Well, suffice it to say that I believe that all my friends are hugs from God and I can count them on one hand - the other hand is my husband's ;)

God bless

Monday, June 7, 2010

Proverbs 29:25

Proverbs 29:25
The fear of human opinion disables; trusting in God protects you from that. (The Message)

Fearing people is a dangerous trap, but trusting the Lord means safety. (New Living Translation) 

To fear anyone will prove to be a snare, but whoever trusts in the LORD is kept safe. (Today's New International Version)
 
When I read Proverbs 29 on May 29th, this verse jumped out at me. I wanted to jump onto my keyboard and share it but felt that I should ruminate on it a bit...so I did...

Saturday, June 5, 2010

Secret #6: Connection in marriage

Marriage is an excellent example of a connection.

We all need to realize that “A good marriage is one which allows for change and growth in the individuals and in the way they express their love”. Pearl Buck (1892 – 1973)

This is why, for those who are not yet married, you need to know the person you intend to marry to some extent before you make that life-long commitment because that’s exactly what marriage is – a life–long commitment; “till death does you part”. Excluding those words from your marriage vows does not change the fact that marriage is a life-long commitment as ordained by God. Have you ever wondered why some wedding bands are used? There may be a hint there... Well, I tell you, marriage is full of surprises ask those who've been married for 25 years or more but there are some avoidable surprises if you take the time before marriage to get to know the person you'll be with for the rest of your life.

Friday, June 4, 2010

Will you dance with me? (Author unknown)

Just this morning, I was considering what to post and then I found a gem in my mailbox...as usual, my comments are in green.

Too many people put off something that brings them joy just because they haven't thought about it, don't have it on their schedule, didn't know it was coming or are too rigid to depart from their routine. Sound familiar, yes it sure does sonund familiar to me but I'm changing by His grace.

I got to thinking one day about all those women on the Titanic who passed up dessert at dinner that fateful night in an effort to cut back. From then on, I've tried to be a little more flexible.

How many women out there will eat at home because their husband didn't suggest going out to dinner until after something had been thawed? Does the word 'refrigeration' mean nothing to you? I'm guilty of this too...so now I make an effort to suggest it before anything gets thawed and even if it's after things are thawed and warmed up - so what? I'm on the "live life abundantly" path - within reason of course. Recently, I suggested that we eat out and out of sheer surprise (knowing how often I turn do those offers) my husband asked, "what are we celebrating?" My response was: "We're celebrating life - it doesn't need to be a special occasion." And so we did...

Tuesday, June 1, 2010

Secret #6: Connection

Secret #6: Connection: Emotional connection – to those in need, our support group, non-believers, all those around us – helps us take courageous action for Christ.*

Connection is simply a “link” – something that bring 2 or more things, people, groups etc together; the 2 or more things do not need to necessarily have anything in common. Like they say, opposites attract…that’s why God made a man to marry a woman not another man and why women marry men not other women.

No one can live without connection. Oh yes - even a hermit is connected to himself. As an aside, I believe that once you learn to love yourself, you’ll never be lonely even if/when you’re alone. (See the piece on Courage to Love for more on that)

In fact Margaret J Wheatley put it this way: Relationships are all there is. Everything in the universe only exists because it is in relationship to everything else. Nothing exists in isolation. We have to stop pretending we are individuals that can go it alone [from Never Eat Alone]

I completely agree with Elizabeth George**, there are 3 kinds of people: