Friday, January 30, 2015

Five MInute Friday :: Wait



Today is Friday, and that means it's Five Minute Friday, the day we get to write without worrying about grammar or punctuation or style or anything. Then we all link together at Kate Motaung's place.

Just free-writing fun times here. The ONLY rule is you have post some comment love to the person behind you on the link-up (and others, if you desire).

 Want to join in? Click here for info.


 Today's prompt is:  WAIT


GO


Waiting is such a hard thing, and it usually doesn't make me smile when faced with it.

In "My Utmost for His Highest," Oswald Chambers said:

"When God brings the blank space, see that you do not fill it in, but wait."

How apt is that description? A blank page is tempting to fill in with writing or scribbles, or to paste in pictures, or to fold the page up and make it into an airplane. But in the midst of all the hurry to cover up the blank space in my life, I miss the beauty and goodness of resting.

We are all familiar with the Psalm 46:10, which says "Be still and know that I am God." But I love the way the NASB version puts it:

"Cease striving and know that I am God..." (emphasis mine).

Isn't that what we are doing when God slows us down and causes us to wait? Striving? Trying to  make something happen? Maybe trying to get our own way?

With that perspective, wait seems like a good idea.


STOP




Tuesday, January 27, 2015

Snail Mail



If you are like me, you get mostly junk mail and some bills in your mailbox.

I love to write, and I love to get cards and letters. And I love to make new friends, too.

Gifts are one of my "love languages," and I look at cards and letters as gifts. If someone takes the time to write something with her own hand and put it in the mail to me, it is a gift!

If you also enjoy making new friends and getting something nice in the mail, you might want to consider joining the next round of FMF (Five Minute Friday) Party Snail Mail. It is hosted by Kaitlyn Bouchillon, and this round there are 144 women signed up from all over the world!

I participated in the Christmas round, and it was a lot of fun. In addition to getting to know some other women through this venue, Kaitlyn raises the fun factor by offering great giveaways.

You can click here to take a look at the current giveaway for round 5. Only the women who are signed up for this round can qualify, but maybe you'll be convinced to sign up for the next round?....

Monday, January 19, 2015

My One Word for 2015

I have tried to do New Year's resolutions before and I fail at them, no matter how motivated I am.

I read recently that resolutions tend to focus on the negative (things I wish I didn't do, bad habits I want to break) instead of on the positive (things I want to see grow in me, what I want God to do in my heart.) So instead of resolutions, I have chosen one word to focus on.

 "My one word" for this year is PERSPECTIVE.
 
I read Ann Voskamp's Advent devotional, "The Greatest Gift," for Christmas last month. (If you are looking for something to read for Advent next year, this is a wonderful choice.) This reading, and a revisiting of Ann's book, "One Thousand Gifts," has me thinking about my attitude.

In "The Greatest Gift," Ann Voskamp writes:

"Joy is a function of gratitude, and gratitude is a function of perspective. You only begin to change your life when you begin to change the way you see (page 125)."

Perspective, of course, is our point of view. But I like one of the ways Merriam-Webster.com defines it:  the interrelation in which a subject or its parts are mentally viewed. 

Doesn't that sum it up? Our point of view comes from our mind. How we think about something determines how we see it, what our "reality" is. And then follows all the misunderstandings and arguments and hard feelings, etc, because we don't stop to think that everyone has their own perspective. 

Even God.

Isaiah 55:8-9 (NASB) says:

"'For My thoughts are not your thoughts, nor are your ways My ways,' declares the LORD. 'For as the heavens are higher than the earth, so are My ways higher than your ways and My thoughts than your thoughts.'"

I can't begin to say how very glad I am that God does not think like I do. We'd all be in trouble, if He ran things my way! 

But I do want to learn to have God's perspective, to mentally picture what He wants me to see. I want to capture my thoughts before they run wild, urging me to do things my way instead of God's way. 

Because I've been there before and it is joy-draining, whether the result is something negative or positive.



A little end note: I wrote this when I got up this morning. And then my children got up...(cue the drama).  It was interesting how many times today I was aware of the different perspectives in our home, and how they contributed to the fussing between my children. I am excited, and a little nervous (being honest here), about what God is going to do this year as He helps me to change the way I look at everything. 



Saturday, January 10, 2015

Five Minute Friday - Welcome



This is a link up with Kate Motaung where we write for five minutes without worrying about it being right. If you would like to join, the only rule is to leave an encouraging word for the person who linked before you.

Click here for details.

This week's prompt is:  WELCOME

Go--

Happy New Year?


It seems like just a blink ago, and I was saying welcome to last year, desperately wanting a do-over for many things, promising to "get it right" this time. Time goes by so quickly, and in the wake of it is a mixed bag of so much joy and pain, success and sorrow, accomplishment and regret. And here we are at the start of another new year.

But maybe this new year isn't so welcome.

Maybe is it more of the same, a marking of time where seconds become minutes, minutes become hours, hours become long days that drag into months, which crawl into yet another year of the same thing.


I have found that the key to welcoming each new moment is to be thankful.To be present and engaged, purposefully grateful for each breath, each view, each touch.

"Be thankful in all circumstances, for this is God's will for you who belong to Christ Jesus," (1 Thessalonians 5:18 NLT).
Start today, listing the blessings of God. Think deeper than just the superficial things—really look at Who He Is.

And then His hand will be more welcome than ever before.




  STOP

Friday, December 12, 2014

Five Minute Friday:: Prepare



Today is Five Minute Friday, and I am joining in on the free writing with other free-writing writers who love to write without worrying about it being right.

If you would like to do this too, just click here for details.


Today's prompt is: PREPARE

GO

Who knows how to prepare for what life hands you? Who even knew that we would need to prepare?

I mean, it should just come naturally, this growing up and going on into all the good that life has to offer, right?

We grow up, we go to school (or not), we get a job (or not), we get married (or not), we have children (or not), we settle into our groove, and then plug along. And all is well.

Only it isn't.

And the One who knew we wouldn't be able to prepare, that we could not prepare well enough for what life would hand us, He who loves us beyond our wildest dreams,  

He prepared for us.

He came down, He made a way for all the messes we would make to be cleaned up. He provided the path for us to walk the straight way, the ONLY way to peace and joy.

Now, the only thing we have to do is to prepare our hearts to receive Him—this mighty all-powerful King who condescended to come as a baby.

He made a way where there was no other way.

STOP



Tuesday, November 4, 2014

Random Picture Post

LOTS of pictures! 

 Buoyancy experiment - foil boats in salt water, how many pennies will they hold? (Sara's held over 100!)

 Daisy home from cruciate ligament repair surgery.  She cried for 7 hours after we brought her home. Literally.

 Density experiment - homemade lava lamps (water/vinegar & oil, with alka-seltzer tabs).


 Daisy with the "Cone of Shame," after having bandage taken off because it was slipping. Vet said it would, but I was surprised how soon.

 Close up of creepy incision. Poor puppeh. That dark hanging spot is her gut, which is more noticeable now that she's shaved. Vet said she needs to lose about 10 lbs. Accomplishing that will be interesting.


From creepy to yummy (said these are random) - up around 4:30 - 5:00 each morning with Daisy, so have been making homemade treats. These are English muffins. There is nothing like homemade!

 Way late in posting some things, like my birthday pictures. Sara made me a homemade pillow (so sweet), and Glen bought me a tennis racket and some tennis balls. Should have taken a picture of how he wrapped them. I had no idea what they were.

 Another homemade treat - yeasted pumpkin bread. Wonderful texture and great, mildly sweet flavor.

My talented guy's handcrafted shoe-shine box.

 My sweet Sara's paper dolls. I fail at making these. Mine look more like paper aliens.

 Iain reading to some guests. :)

 A giant (sadly, dead) wheel bug (see wheel on upper back?). They are great for your garden, since they eat the potato bugs. This one died because we just had the exterminator out for an bi-annual spray.

 An ant with a very large bottom. Maybe a queen?

 Kyla doing a corrosion experiment. The copper wire turned the water blue. Pretty cool. (Watermelon has nothing to do with experiment, it's just photo-bombing.)


 Sara turned ten this September. We had an outside party, since it was such a nice day. :)




 Kyla doing a concentration experiment. Her favorite part was wearing the eye protection.

 Look at this tiny salamander Kyla found. Isn't it adorable? It was just squirming around on the patio by our door one day when it was getting cold. It was very happy to be in Kyla's warm hand.

Oxygen/fire experiment. Balloon was inflated with oxygen from Baker's yeast mixed with hydrogen peroxide. Next, a candle was lighted, then put under large glass jar. Flame went out. The candle was  lighted again, then the oxygen from the balloon was released under the jar. Was supposed to flame up suddenly (we were nervous), but it only burned brighter. 

 Atmospheric pressure experiment. Small amount of water heated in empty (12 oz) aluminum can and then can turned upside down in a bowl of ice water. It imploded immediately. Very cool.


 Experiment to break down chemical composition of water. Battery made hydrogen and oxygen bubbles in the salt water, and the test tubes captured the two gases, showing that there is twice as much hydrogen as oxygen in water.


Iain's clay dude.

Whew! Told you there were lots of pictures!

All done for now.


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