Wednesday, February 24, 2010

The Power of Prayer

Today my heart feels heavy. There are quite a few of my closest friends who are going through a trying time in their lives. I feel their pain, not only because they are people I feel so deeply connected to but also because I have been in their shoes....multiple times. God does surround us with the people that he knows will be there for us. Like the saying goes, Friends are angles here on earth. In the past, they have all done their share of being there for me. Now it is my turn to be there for them. Because there really isn't much that I can do to make their lives better besides being a good friend, I will continue to pray for them. The power of prayer is a very great force. And, God is there for us if we allow him to be.

Dear Lord, please hear my prayer. My heart is heavy for those I care about so deeply. May you comfort them during this time of struggle. Please give them the strength, faith and hope that they long for. Surround them with positive people, enlighten their hearts, and lift their spirits. May you take away any fears and worry that they feel. I pray that they feel your precence, your embrace and your love. I pray that you give me the strength in order to be able to be there for them, comfort them and help with whatever I can. I thank you for blessing my life with wonderful loving people. I pray that I may be able to give to them all that they have given to me. May you bless my loved ones with peace, happiness and good health. In your name I pray,

What I am thankful for today:
the sunshine
my friends
my family
my children
my health
my pets
the power of prayer
spring being around the corner
positive attitudes
open minds
English Muffins

Friday, February 19, 2010

Chloe and 100 Things

People do not give animals the credit they deserve. To me, and lots of other people, pets are God's gifts to us. They give us peace, affection, comfort, and love that is constant and unconditional.

Chloe is my cat. She is a one person cat, and I am her person. Now at almost 12 years old she is showing the signs of aging. She is not able to jump up on high places as easily, she has skin disorders and is not nearly as playful as she used to be. Chloe and I had a long chat yesterday. We are in agreement that she is to live until at least 21 years old. Her 'Uncle Butterscotch' lived to be 22, so I know that it is possible.  We will see if her body allows her to live that long. Her spirit is still strong, still stubborn and for a cat, she never gives up.

Chloe comforts me and it seems as though she knows when I need it. She is not affectionate with anyone other than me. She rarely goes to anyone but me. Chloe is very vocal, we do talk to each other and understand each other. Scary I know. It gets on some people's nerves but I love it. If only everyone understood the compassion that an animal is willing to give. It is sad to know that so many animals are in unloving homes with people who neglect them. It breaks my heart actually. The animal has no choice as to where it lives and who takes care of them. I am so thankful for my Chloe and my other pets. They warm my heart and my spirit every single day.

My 100 things that I am thankful for:
100. my pets
99. my friends
98. my family
97. my children

96. scrapbooking
95. nature
94. my store
93. my customers
92. my teachers
91. flowers
90. sunsets
89. sunshine
88. the rain
87. hot tea
86. coffee with flavored creamer
85. summer
83. chinese food
82. ice cream
81. laughter
80. my vehicle
79. PartyLite
78. my clothes
77. free haircuts
76. free gym membership
75. my camera
74. my printer
73. the internet
72. facebook
71. my blogs
70. my website
69. creativity
68. inspiration
66. kindness
65. quality time with my children
64. precious memories
63. rainbows and every color in them
62. The Healing Place and Linda
61. massages from Tom (Kneading Hands Massage)
60. music
59. Jillbean-Soup
58. BoBunny
57. animals

56. my clean house
55. clean laundry
34. Stampin Up!
33. painted toes
32. Amy Grant
31. church
30. the power of prayer
29. God
28. selflessness
27. tissues

26. loyalty
25. everlasting friendships
24. the beach
23. Wii
22. signs from my loved ones who have passed away
21. my warm queen sized bed
20. Youth Group
19. Avon (thank you Rachel)
18. sleep
17. smiles
16. appreciation
15. open mindedness
14. unconditional love
13. positive minds
12. the fact that I can walk to my store from my home
11. sea shells
10. classes at my store
9. inspirational quotes
8. heat
7. hot bubble baths
6. soup
5. jewelry
4. happiness
3. constructive critisizm
2. silly sacrasm
1. my health

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

What I have been up too..

I guess we are all entitled do a period of feeling tired and overwhelemed, right? Well that is me right now. For all you Moms who have delt with a child who gets up in the night you know where I am coming from. Makenna has had these terrible nightmares for the last two weeks. By 3-4am she is in my bed. I used to be able to sleep through her getting up. However now she is waking me up so that she can wrap her arms around my neck or 'hug my arm' as she puts it. Jeremy and I had a chat with Makenna and Gavin about strangers. Since then, she has not slept through the night. We have to continually check to make sure the doors are locked and check all the rooms of the house to show her that there are no strangers here. Jeremy didn't realize that his way of explaining strangers may not have been the best for a 3 year olds ears. How Mommy ends up taking the heat, I have no clue. Basically it has been two weeks of interupted sleep for me. Lately it takes me 15 minutes to calm her down just to get her back to sleep. Then, I have to work on getting myself back to sleep.

Working out has been so tough when one is sleepy and feeling very fatigued. I have managed to make it through the EA Sports workout 3 times a week. If I get tired, I just stop. The option of taking a nap is looking better and better for me although I have never been a napper. And, it is very difficult to nap with a 3 year old who sometimes is very independent then others very needy.

Here is what I have got going on.....
I am pretty sure that I start the gym next Wednesday. I am excited to start working out there, meet new people and spend one on one time playing with Makenna. Today I met with a Creative Memories Consultant who will be active in my store sometime in March. My classes have been filling up and I have met a huge circle of wonderful women.

It was Silly Sunday at church this past Sunday. Jokes were told, silly heart hats were worn, we took a Valentine's Day trivia, and there was a chili cook-off. It was a lot of fun. Makenna makes herself right at home there.

During a church meeting with the education board, I decided to take over the responsibilty of the Youth Group from 4th-7th grade. I am currently looking into changing the Youth room to be more inviting to the children as well as coming up with a good name for the group. There is a potential sleep over at the church on March 20th which is when we will kick off the start. Game night is going to be the theme. My youth group, Animation, is getting together and planning a 20 reunion for sometime next spring. Somehow I managed to be in charge of that too.

Gavin will be 10 on Wednesday....I cannot even believe it. Josh is sleeping over this coming Saturday night then the small party will be on Sunday. I think Makenna is more excited then Gavin is. This year he hardly asked for anything. I think he is growing up way too least for me. It is hard to believe that Makenna will be 4. Time sure does fly.

What I am thankful for today:
my children
Chloe who is currently sleeping wrapped around my neck
new customers
new teachers
my friends (old and new)
my family
my store
4-wheel drive
cheese nips
my health
open minds
positive attitudes

Thursday, February 11, 2010

Corinthians 13:1-13

Because it is closing in on Valentine's Day, I thought this was very suiting. I know we all tend to forget what true love really is.....

Corinthians 13:1-13

If I speak in the tongues of men and angels,
but have not love,
I have become sounding brass or a tinkling symbol.
And if I have prophecy and know all mysteries and all knowledge,
and if I have all faith so as to remove mountains,
but have not love, I am nothing.
And if I dole out all my goods, and
if I deliver my body that I may boast
but have not love, nothing I am profited.
Love is long suffering,
love is kind,
it is not jealous,
love does not boast,
it is not inflated.
It is not discourteous,
it is not selfish,
it is not irritable,
it does not enumerate the evil.
It does not rejoice over the wrong, but rejoices in the truth
It covers all things,
it has faith for all things,
it hopes in all things,
it endures in all things.
Love never falls in ruins;
but whether prophecies, they will be abolished; or
tongues, they will cease; or
knowledge, it will be superseded.
For we know in part and we prophecy in part.
But when the perfect comes, the imperfect will be superseded.
When I was an infant,
I spoke as an infant,
I reckoned as an infant;
when I became [an adult],
I abolished the things of the infant.
For now we see through a mirror in an enigma, but then face to face. Now I know in part, but then I shall know as also I was fully known.
But now remains
faith, hope, love,
these three;
but the greatest of these is love.

What I am thankful for today:
the last two snow days with all the kids
my pain in the butt dog....LOL!
my friends
my children
Giant brand Pizza
the sunshine
my health
the health of my loved ones
hot tea
my warm bed
my home
my dreams
my future

Monday, February 1, 2010

Forgiveness and 10 Pounds of Flour

Spirit of love within me, possess my hands and heart,
Break through the bonds of self concern that seeks to stand apart.
Grant me the love that suffers long,
that hopes, believes and bears,
The love fulfilled in sacrifice that cares as Jesus cares.

~Timothy Dudly-Smith

Today I am going to write about forgiveness. It was touched on in our sermon at church yesterday. How is it that God forgives us for everything we do, but we have such a hard time forgiving what has been done to us? How is it that God can look passed all of our flaws, yet we cannot get passed others? How is it that God can love us no matter what, yet we cannot learn to love everyone?

After 36 years, I am still learning how to forgive. It is true that the only person who suffers is the one who cannot forgive. Pastor Tricia made it clear that we learn from those who have hurt us and although we may forgive them we should not become their door mat. And a friend reminded me today that in order to not become that door mat, we should forgive but not nessecarily forget. Another friend said, a time of being unforgiving, is a time for prayer. It takes a lot of strength to be able to forgive. I know that I have done wrong at times. I am sure there are people out there trying to forgive me.

If you are like me and carrying this weight around, remember this story below and do not forget to pray about it. God is willing to help you through it...he is the master of forgiveness.

I read this email that was forwarded to me a while back called "Forgiveness and 10 lbs of Flour"........

One of my favorite things about my son, Christian is that he wears his day on his face. If he’s had a good day it’s splashed all over with reckless sunny abandon. If he has had a bad day it hovers over his head like an impending monsoon. I never have to wonder, the weather is announced at twenty paces.

I was listening to the radio in carpool one day when I saw the storm approach. He rumbled towards the car, opened the door, tossed his backpack in as if he were releasing a grenade and sat down. I knew better than to say a word. There was only one thing to do. I drove straight to his favorite ice cream store. We ordered and sat in silence for a few moments-one doesn’t want to rush the weather:)

“I am done with John Frank!” he said. (name changed to protect the heart of the mother)

“Really,” I said. “I thought he was one of your best friends.”

“He was, but I’m done with him now. Done! He is off my prayer list.”

“Sorry to hear that,” I said. “Best friends are hard to come by. What happened?”

So he told me the whole sordid tale of how John knocked his books off his desk and they went flying everywhere and the teacher got mad and Christian said it was John and John said he wasn’t so he got in trouble twice. He was punished once for knocking his books over and the second time for tattling on a classmate.

“It’s not fair mom!”

“I hear you,” I said. “Fair doesn’t live here anymore.”

I watched Christian that evening as he was bent under the inequity of life. It was crushing him. Before bedtime I said to him, lets go for a walk. I asked him to carry the ten pound bag of flour I had bought that day. I told him I would explain why we needed it when we got to where we were going.
After a while he asked if he could put it down but I told him we had a little farther to go. We walked and walked ’till finally he flopped down on the path and said, “Mom, this thing is too heavy!”
Well, I’m sure you get the point that we talked about that night.

“Here is the deal Christian. When you don’t forgive it’s as if you carry this weight around with you everywhere you go. John’s probably been asleep for half an hour but here we are, worn out from the trip. Forgiveness doesn’t mean that the other person was right or even that they are sorry, it just gives you a place to take the burden. Forgiveness is God’s gift to us to live in a world that’s not fair.

Why not be flour free and forgive?

“Are you tired? Worn out? Burned out on religion? Come to me. Get away with me and you’ll recover your life. I’ll show you how to take a real rest. Walk with me and work with me—watch how I do it. Learn the unforced rhythms of grace. I won’t lay anything heavy or ill-fitting on you. Keep company with me and you’ll learn to live freely and lightly.” Matthew 11:28-30

What I am thankful for today:
Makenna singing "Glory to God, Glory to God, Glory to God in the Highest!"
my friends
my children
my family
my pets
Pastor Tricia
new opportunitues
a great nights sleep
Gavin working out with me this morning
steamed broccoli
a wonderful weekend at the store
Jessica for working at my store on Tuesday nights!!
hot green tea
the sunshine
open minds
Donna L and her awesome creativity!
the power of prayer
Wendi's surgery being a miracle!
miles and miles of smiles!
my store
my customers
my life