Results of Organizing

I decided to put some papers in a box when I cleaned a room to get them out of sight and out of mind. While watching television tonight with my husband, I asked him if he’d carry the box into the living room so I could sort through the stuff. Turns out it wasn’t that heavy. 🙂

Anyway, I’ve been going over in my mind the times when I worked my last job. My boss and I had similar flash points with anger. If things weren’t going smoothly, I’d pray and hold back and eventually something would come up that demanded a response and then I’d state my position. I’ve been thinking and saying, “I wish I’d kept quiet. I wish I’d been a better witness for Christ.”

As I went through this box tonight, I found a piece of paper where I wrote out a conversation with my boss where she let me know that she expected better of me. I told her my reasoning and the lack of training on one of the machines. She said I should have sought out the training. Good point. The more I read, the more I understood that we communicated better than the memory of the exchange led me to believe. I felt weeks earlier that the Lord released me from the job. Maybe the heat turned up some so I would want to leave.

I remember a pastor telling the congregation that people don’t change until it gets too uncomfortable to stay the same. I knew God wanted me to write, but to head out without the assurance of a steady paycheck stopped me. What if I couldn’t get assignments from magazines or customers looking for a wordsmith?

I thank God for helping me to stick with organizing. Not only does it feel great to get rid of the excess taking up room and lingering in my subconscious, but I find things that help me along life’s pathway. I can let those thoughts about my job go.

Also, somethings I thought I would use one day have lost their appeal and they really are worthless.

May God bless you!

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Walk It Out

Psalm 25:4-5 (NKJV): Show me Your ways, O Lord; Teach me Your paths. Lead me in Your truth and teach me, For You are the God of my salvation; on You I wait all day.

I began my day in a strange way today, thinking of the future with tears in my eyes as I pictured a sad probability. As I sat with my Bible and opened it to read, the first thing I saw was Psalm 23: 4b-6, (NKJV): I will fear no evil; For You are with me; Your rod and Your staff, they comfort me.

You prepare a table before me in the presence of my enemies; You anoint my head with oil; My cup runs over.

Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me All the days of my life, And I will dwell in the house of the Lord Forever.

Before I sat down to be with God, my youngest texted me. Mom, I have an idea for your blog on organizing/decluttering today: “If you haven’t used it in 6 or more months, get rid of it! Even if you really don’t want to.  It will help you break past emotional, materialistic issues.”

Most experts say if you haven’t used it in a year, etc. Some say to put the stuff in a box or bag, store it away and in a year if you’ve never gone near it, don’t open it! Give it to your favorite charity or sell it.

I got thinking of all the things I’ve held onto and I almost panicked. “Dear God, help  me.”

So I sat down to my cleared kitchen table – “Thank You, Jesus for the changes You are gently encouraging me to make.”

I read beyond Psalm 23. Psalm 24: 3-5 (NKJV) says: “Who may ascend into the hill of the Lord? Or who may stand in His holy place? He who has clean hands and a pure heart, Who has not lifted up his soul to an idol. Nor sworn deceitfully.

He shall receive blessing from the Lord, And righteousness from the God of his salvation.”

“Is that my problem? Are things an idol to me, Lord?”

So, I speak the words, “I repent, Lord, I truly repent.”

Now for His grace to walk it out.

Be blessed my friends.

The Next Generation

My grandchildren and I watched Disney’s “Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs” one recent morning while their mother caught up on some neglected sleep.

Image from http://movies.disney.com/snow-white-and-the-seven-dwarfs

It took a while to get my computer working. So, here I am, able to blog, finally!

On Good Friday, I offered to do a service at the Nursing Home like it was no big deal. I do the worship without too much trepidation, but when I needed to speak before twelve people stretched out in a line in their seats or wheel chairs, with a worker present, my heart beat sped up and I wondered what was I thinking to volunteer. With the busyness of the holidays and with company from Thursday to Monday, I wrote a blog on Saturday ready to post it and never got it typed, let alone sent out.

So, this is a modified version of that blog.

There’s nothing like sitting with little ones and entering into their world for a little while. Sometimes they want to watch too many shows or play electronic games, so their mom limits the time allowed so they interact with people.

We settled into comfy chairs to watch old fashioned scrolls with introductory words describing the setting and some of the plot as “Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs” began. I read the first page a bit after it appeared to the children. I finished the words as the second page showed up. My older grandson’s eyes widened. “How did you remember the words from the first page and then read the second page like that?”

I know he was giving me a compliment but he’s at the age where it can go either way.  Sometimes I’ll tell him something and he’ll tell me I’m wrong. Then, after he finds out I wasn’t wrong he’s not sure how to act. I’ll say, “I did go to school, you know.”

Then he ponders it all. He’s a deep thinker. His mom tells me he may come back 24 hours later with a new angle and then be ready to argue again at 48 hours.

During the movie we talked about such a variety of topics: skulls, death, Black Magic, Christianity, meanness, kindness, jealousy, love, and imagination making things worse.

It’s amazing how watching a program with young people and being open to their thoughts and questions can get a conversation going. Sometimes I’d ask him what he thought of certain situations.

When the queen, who was sometimes called a witch, used magic to change her appearance so she could poison her step-daughter, I told the children afterwards that evil often backfires and hits the person set on hurting another. It makes the case for that logic in Proverbs and in the Psalms, but I didn’t quote them book and verse.

Today, I spent a good portion of the day setting the house in order. I love my family very much. So, it’s worth it to cook and do dishes and move the toys into the living room so we can gather together. They helped pick up before they left, but by the time the cars left, we’d eaten another meal and they needed to get on their way. I decided to do some extra cleaning beyond the ordinary after the company went home. I guess it felt good to get at things. I’m still organizing.

I finished the kitchen and now I’m on to the next room. It took me longer than I anticipated because of the curtains, which I had to point out to my oldest daughter. It’s funny the things that stand out to me and others don’t even notice.

May God bless you!

Love Makes the World Go ‘Round

Love Makes the World Go ‘Round” is a popular song written by Bob Merrill for the 1961 Broadway musical Carnival! (This is a quote from Wikipedia.)

This morning early in my day, I thought about life. Back in my childhood a saying got repeated, “Love makes the world go ’round.”

I didn’t know until a few moments ago that it was a song title. 🙂

My brother and sister-in-law uprooted themselves to help take care of her parents in their latter years. Love is not easy at times. They’re sacrificing for others, and yet they’re enjoying this precious time with family.

As a young mom, I learned to discipline my children in a consistent manner even when it broke my heart to see them cry. When they got older I wouldn’t let them watch violent movies or see R-rated or worse films. Sometimes my husband and I were too restrictive over other matters and we needed to learn to see things from their point of view.

Our children heard us say we’re sorry but I think they understood we were looking out for their best interests.

Love means saying no to the bad. My parents wouldn’t let us go see the 1961 movie, “West Side Story” when it came out in the theaters. I was maybe nine years old. Lots of the kids went. I stomped my foot and complained. “You’re too young,” my mom replied and that was that.West Side Story(photo from Wikipedia)

After more thoughts this morning, this came to mind, what shall I do today?

Part of the Scripture from Proverbs 6:6-8 (NASB), took root:

Go to the ant, O sluggard, Observe her ways and be wise, Which having no chief, Officer or ruler, Prepares her food in the summer, And gathers her provision in the harvest.

I, too, have no one barking commands at me. My husband gives suggestions occasionally and then he gets on with his day.

It’s not that I don’t like housework. I get bored. After lots of hours alone, I want to see people.

The point of cleaning and organizing beyond the removal of germs and bad smells and nerve-wracking messes is love. Love for others sharing the home, love of self, love for others stopping over, even love or respect for the neighbors shows up with a tidy place.

I thought, if that doesn’t motivate me to continue on with this organizing quest I’m on, nothing will.

When I start my day in God’s Word and in prayer, I’m centered and reminded that His love goes with me and upholds me.

When I feel I have too much to do I break it down to smaller steps. I’m trying to remember that I have time to continue and if people interrupt, people are more important.

Too much self-centeredness does not make the world go ‘round. When it’s all about me, joy and love get sucked away. I know. I’ve been there and done that and missed out on simple pleasures of life because of complaining and a stinking attitude.

God help me; I don’t want to go there.

May God bless you!

Decisions, Anyone?

I’ve decided to eat healthier, which means to me hardly any meat and very little dairy. I began today with some other areas to limit stuff, as well.

 

So, as I prepared dessert for a group meal, I had to decide. Gingerbread with whole wheat flour and the added chore of making homemade applesauce because we didn’t have any on hand, or making a gelatin with agar agar and fruit juices. I chose the gelatin for a few reasons and began around three o’clock in the afternoon for a 6:00 meal. After I poured the hot liquid into the bowls and added fruit, it suddenly occurred to me that when it was piping hot, it couldn’t cool in minutes. Especially the biggest bowlful, which had seeded fruits in it and only one person couldn’t eat seeds. Seeing as how the weather outside was frightful – I couldn’t resist, at almost 20 degrees Fahrenheit, (freezing is 32 degrees Fahrenheit), I decided to put them on the front porch and check often so they didn’t freeze.

 

Then, I realized that since I’d added half a cup of cranberry juice to the ten cups of sweet apple juice for color I may want to add some sweetener since cranberries are tart. I put in a small amount and tasted it. With the added fruit and the toppings, I hoped it would taste good to them and be good for us. One person said he liked it. I liked it, my husband did not. No one else said anything because they tend to be nice people and it wasn’t horrid, it just wasn’t like the commercial gelatins. It was still a little tart. I’ve heard cranberries help strengthen bones. 🙂

 

After we got home I noticed I felt a bit grumpy even though we had a good time. I know better than to start more than one major project at a time, but I’ve committed to two things and once I commit, I try my best to follow through.

 

The organizing thing is not requiring a lot out of me for the first two weeks of January and the author, Regina Leeds, said it goes faster if you’re able to make decisions quicker rather than slowly. I’ll see how it goes when I get to that point. She wrote, One Year to an Organized Life: From Your Closets to Your Finances, the Week-by-Week Guide to Getting Completely Organized for Good, copyrighted in 2008 and published by MJF Books, New York, NY if you haven’t read this blog previously.

 

We have a group started and books are ordered. So, we’ll go forward and see results. Sandra Felton has written helpful books on becoming less messy, and one of her quotes is, “The secret to success is making very small, yet very consistent, changes.”

 

I went to the internet to find her and got watching small videos on YouTube. The decision- making YouTube episode for getting rid of clutter is called, “Quadrant Method for Clearing Clutter,” 6:13 time or six minutes and thirteen seconds. That was helpful.

 

As I organize, I realize God is answering prayer. I don’t feel grumpy anymore since I started writing. 🙂

 

Do you struggle with decisions and/or second guess the ones you’ve made?

 

May God bless you.

Let It Begin

Three of us entered the church tonight for our organizing class. Two more decided they’ll join next week.Image result for women in a classroom(photo from towson.edu)

It’s humbling to join with folks and admit you’ve got a problem you’ve struggled to overcome. It’s also exhilarating to know you’re not alone.

So we left the meeting with the words commitment, hard work, and support as some of the parting promises to one another.

I read some women’s magazines with articles off topic from organizing which made me want to write an article for one of them. I’ll need to do some research on the subject and on marketing. Some magazine editors don’t accept articles from writers if they haven’t sold to a magazine with a huge following.

I truly believe that God orders my steps in mysterious ways sometimes.

Proverbs 16:9 (ESV) says: “The heart of man plans his way, but the LORD establishes his steps.”

We’ll see where they go.

May God bless you as you step out in life.

Habitually Moving

I’ve been working more on a transposing assignment for a man who hopes it’ll be done by Christmas. We miscommunicated at the beginning so it’ll be quite the feat if I get it done. I just decided to check out how many more pages are in the handwritten notebook and couldn’t find it. Did I put it away and the zip drive, too?

Yes, I did. There are times when I’m driving and my mind is on something else and suddenly I’ll realize I’m almost at my destination. I guess I tidy up on autopilot as well.

When I went to figure out my day in the planner, the date jumped out on me. I know Christmas is on Sunday, but how can Sunday suddenly be less than seven days away. So, I’d better get a package in the mail tomorrow. I’d better get my cards signed tomorrow or Wed. I’d better get up earlier in my day before the phone starts ringing so I can type for my client.

I’ve been handing things over to God this week and hopefully they’ll stay there. One of those things was getting stuff done. I’ll do my best and leave the results up to Him.

One thing I like about helping people with their memoirs is the fun of seeing their choices. I’ve had clients with interesting lives and sometimes I imagine myself in their shoes and wonder if I would have done the same thing. Would I have had the stamina and courage and enthusiasm to do what they did?

We’re all wired so differently.

I’ve been singing a friend’s song this week and it reminded me that I wrote a song once and gave it to a fellow to see if he could come up with the music. I hope my copy is in the file cabinet. I begin the organization class in January, not too soon. I’ve been working on organizing since November, but this month has been more hit and miss.

I decided when I was a busy mom to stop stressing over Christmas. I didn’t think God wanted me to go huge on gift giving since His Word says to do all things in moderation, (Php_4:5, (KJV):  Let your moderation be known unto all men. The Lord is at hand.

His Word also says not to owe people anything but love. Rom_13:8 , (KJV): Owe no man any thing, but to love one another: for he that loveth another hath fulfilled the law.

I don’t mind being on autopilot if I’m throwing the garbage into the outdoor cans, but if someone stops at the house, I don’t want to immediately think of the ten things on my list and start re-ordering the timetable and miss out on them. I want to be fully there.

I hope this finds you well and at peace. May God bless you.

Inspired

 

My husband ordered the movie “Bolt” by Disney, released in November of 2008, from Netflix which arrived today. If he’s busy, he’ll fall asleep. So, he missed about half of it after the first few minutes.

The Cat, Mittens [spoiler alert] totally tears down Bolt’s super-inflated ego, or is it supreme confidence? Rhino, the chubby hamster idolizes Bolt. At Bolt’s lowest, Rhino tells him what incredible feats he’s accomplished. Rhino says the world needs Bolt to be that super hero.

Humbled, realistically thinking, Bolt decides to forge ahead without super hero capabilities. He’s going to face his challenges with his dog strengths, a heart full of love for his “person,” and help from his friends.

I’ve read a lot of inspirational stuff today. I’m reading through the book of Romans and the Apostle Paul talks of humankind with our sinful nature. He calls himself the chief of sinners, the least of the Apostles in Roman seven, which I’ll read tomorrow. In the build up to chapter seven, he points us to Jesus Christ. How He helped us overcome sin and live a life worth living for ourselves, for others, and ultimately for God.

He tells our end state if we want to stay in sin and our end state if we go for righteousness. I’m not forced to follow God or to reject Him.

The other inspirational readings I did today were the Living Forward: a Proven Plan to Stop Drifting and Get the Life You Want book by Michael Hyatt and Daniel Harkavy, (copyright 2016 and published by Baker Books, Grand Rapids, MI), and the book One Year to an Organized Life: From Your Closets to Your Finances, the Week- by-Week Guide to Getting Completely Organized for Good by Regina Leeds, (copyrighted in 2008 and published by MJF Books, New York, NY).

Both books give action plans in manageable steps and convince their audience that they can do what the authors propose if they choose to take the steps outlined. Both books proclaim others have followed their advice and succeeded.

They warn the reader that the only way to succeed is to take the steps required.

What I love as an adult is the opportunity to learn and grow and change when I choose to. I’m not forced to go to school to learn how to stop drifting or how to stop being disorganized.

Not that I’m against kids being sent to school, but I would do it differently if I were in charge. I’m just saying…

Years ago, I heard a radio program on Focus on the Family. If I remember rightly, the guest specialist told Dr. Dobson that a number of boys would excel if they could wait until age eight before entering school.

I’m NOT saying I know how to do things differently. 🙂 Can you imagine the restructuring of people’s lives as children were allowed to stay home until eight years old in our mostly non-agrarian society?

I’ve heard a couple of countries in Europe will not let the mom stay home from work and home school their children.

Yet, if I did run the educational system, I’d want to see children taught according to the child’s giftings-suited for a job they thrive in. I would want to see firm but absolutely loving discipline in the elementary school so violence is curtailed. Businesses asked what skills are needed so society cooperates in a winning situation for both parties. This is probably already in place. Plus, continuing the internships that are available for students and employees.

May God bless you this day.

 

Wisdom for All Things

I love reading Proverbs, even when some of the pearls of wisdom hit me hard. My daughter-in-law, husband, son and I went to a Christian bookstore today and she bought a book entitled Having a Martha Home the Mary Way: 31 Days to a Clean House and a Satisfied Soul, by Sarah Mae, copyrighted 2016, published by Tyndale Momentum, Carol Stream, IL. I told her I could write a book on housekeeping and organizing from all the books and articles I’ve read on the subject, but because I still struggle with the actual doing of it all, I couldn’t help but scan the WHOLE thing. I really liked it. She had so many good ideas and fresh insights, and she quotes others with their individual points of view.

 

She mentioned some of what Proverbs said, although many of her verses were not from Proverbs. The Bible often confirms itself in other books with the same insights. One thing Proverbs says is in Prov_6:9 (KJV): “How long wilt thou sleep, O sluggard? when wilt thou arise out of thy sleep?”

 

Sarah Mae suggests experimenting with your sleep schedule to see how much sleep actually refreshes you and how much makes you feel logey. I’ve recently discovered that seven hours seems better for me.

 

Proverbs tells us how to raise our children, Prov_22:6, (KJV): Train up a child in the way he should go: and when he is old, he will not depart from it.

 

Proverbs encourages married folks to be content with each other even into their old age in Proverbs 5:19. It also warns people about the dangers of adultery and alcoholism. Proverbs tells how to handle money:  Prov_22:7, (KJV) says, “The rich ruleth over the poor, and the borrower is servant to the lender.”

 

So if you can possibly do it, don’t borrow money. If you’ve had to, try and pay it back as soon as possible. It will relieve stress in your life.

 

Well, I guess that’s all the pearls of wisdom I’m going to speak of tonight. My grandson wants me to blog about the Ten Commandments, so I’ll begin that tomorrow. I’ll ask him to remind me.

 

May God bless you!

 

How to De-clutter

Our Ladies Bible Study meets with a few purposes in mind on Wednesday mornings. One is to study the Word of God. Another is to visit and get to know each other better. The third reason is to pray for the needs of the participants and for broader concerns. We pray for our country and for people with sicknesses or financial distress or in need of spiritual re-birth, etc.

 

Sometimes practical concerns come up. Today we got talking about clutter and the stress and the confusion it can cause. One of the ladies suggested those of us who may suffer from too much stuff could remove five things from our home every two days or every four days. Just five things, it’d be easy.

 

We talked about exercising and eating healthy. Small steps in the right direction can make such a difference in our energy level, our brain feeling joy from the endorphins that exercise releases, our circulatory systems functioning at a better capacity. One of the ladies said when she exercised one day when her auto-immune system was acting up and causing lots of pain, the activity caused all the pain to leave her body once she got past the initial discomfort. After we talked, she got motivated to go home and pull out her low impact exercise DVD. She had forgotten all about it until she shared her remarkable discovery with us.

 

I hoped to eat healthier after our session, but the choices before me weren’t conducive to giving up some of the foods I hoped to avoid. So, I drank more water today. I figure I don’t drink enough good water and that always helps the body function well.

 

We also took the time to pray for each other and our loved ones. I felt more peaceful after that time of seeking God and asking His favor. I’ve been praying the “Our Father” from Mat 6:9, (KJV):  “After this manner therefore pray ye: Our Father which art in heaven, Hallowed be thy name.

Mat 6:10  Thy kingdom come. Thy will be done in earth, as it is in heaven.

Mat 6:11  Give us this day our daily bread.

Mat 6:12  And forgive us our debts, as we forgive our debtors.

Mat 6:13  And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil: For thine is the kingdom, and the power, and the glory, for ever. Amen.”

 

Jesus taught this prayer to His disciples. When I pray this with the ladies, it becomes more than just words I learned as a child. God will help us to have discipline to de-clutter and to do other things that are pleasing to Him if we’ll ask Him for strength and wisdom and time.

 

I hope this finds you well. God bless!