Friday, November 16, 2012

Thank you ~ my dear friends!

     This week I have been troubled by something. You know that saying~ you don't know another person's hardships until you have walked a mile in their shoes? I do not want to be that person who bemoans past difficulties in order to receive love and understanding from others. However, there has been a silence on my part in the past to protect. It was not out of denial, it was my self perseverance and protection mode. As I have walked this road since my divorce I daily remind myself I live to glorify God and it is Him who I seek to please. He alone knows my heart.  I know I have struggled with judging so I understand those who judge and I have been one to withhold and punish~ so I get it. It falsely seems like the correct behavior at times. . . I still find myself doing this more often than I would like to admit. I believe those who are more aware of the mercy and forgiveness they have received throughout their life - are able to extend it to others freely. I have been that person in the past who has withheld my encouragement or acceptance of someone I did not deem worthy. They had to prove themselves faithful, trustworthy = perfect. Not too many of those out there. So now as I have been on the other side of receiving, I see clearly it is not how Christ calls us to love. I have received great mercy, love and forgiveness and I am thankful to be growing in this area of extending the same to others. Who am I? Not a perfect person, but I have the perfect example of unconditional love.

Today I write this with a VERY thankful heart to many dear friends who have shown the same love to me. . . I have learned so much from you.

Thursday, November 8, 2012

4 Books that have changed my Life!

First and foremost #1 is God's words. True and powerful. I need it, as food for my soul and water for my thirst. Last night as I was "stressing out" as Hope refers to it. Her and my husband, Don began to sing, "Shout to the Lord all the earth let us sing. Power and majesty praise to the King. Mountains fall down and the seas roar at the sound of your Name." (I hope I got the words right, because Hope usually is correcting me as I sing, so excuse any wrong words). The praise song from God's word lifted my soul and I became thankful. I know if I am discontent it is, because I have neglected to spend adequate time being nourished by God's word. The answer is to slow down, sit down and pull out my Bible and praise Him. It works every time!!

The other 3 books:
During a period of great growth in my life I was reading daily from Courage to Change, One Day at a Time in Al-Anon and The Language of Letting Go. These 3 books helped me learn how to keep my focus off fixing and controlling other people and recognizing what that looked like~ because I didn't even realize I did it. Let's just give one example: If you say something once, that is OK. If you repeat yourself, then you are trying to control or change a person or situation to what is your own desires= to what makes you comfortable. I also learned how to change this way of thinking and behaving ~ to acceptance, love and letting go. Over responsiblity and care giving can enable an other's growth and responsibility for them self. This can be frustrating, overwhelming in the beginning as you let go, but it is a more joyful way of living. The awareness and practical application these books brought into my life are immeasurable. I have learned to recognize quicker when I am trusting in myself instead of trusting in God.

As Don and Hope finished singing I joined them,  "I sing for joy at the works of your hands forever I praise you, forever I stand. Nothing compare to the promise I have in YOU!"