Am I Not Enough?

I have a friend at our church who has said to me, “I thought when my children grew up I would stop worrying about them.”

I tell her it’s because she’s a mom. She tries not to worry and prays for them often.

Sometimes I pray about things and other times I picture events happening. I anticipate how I’ll react and at that point I forget to pray. Occasionally I’ll think God is saying, “Am I not enough?”

I tell Him He is more than enough.

I was in one of these, if this happens, then I’ll do that, frames of mind when my oldest daughter called.

The last time I headed north to help out two weeks in a row with six days at home in-between, I got thinking something had to change.

As I left her house I asked if she knew of anyone in her vicinity that might babysit for her children when they got sick and she had to work. With both adults working, it makes it hard.

Our ladies’ Bible study group even prayed with me for her benefit. Yesterday she called me to say a youngish grandmother from her church told her she’d be glad to babysit when the kids are sick. “I rarely catch anything, it’s no problem,” she said.

She also offered to help when she gets overwhelmed and told her to let her know.

I felt tears prickle my eyes as she shared her good news. I couldn’t help think of the kindness of God to answer our prayers. Then I immediately thought, why do I worry about her? God is so good to her.

This relieved my mind and enabled me to quit figuring out plans for future events that may never come to pass.

I know there are kind and compassionate people around, but not everyone has the flexible schedule and the ability to act on their desire to help others. I appreciate her and I don’t even know her. 🙂

I realize that God doesn’t want us to worry. The Apostle Paul wrote in Philippians 4:6, (KJV):  do not be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God.

Php 4:7  And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.

Php 4:8  Finally, brothers, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is just, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is commendable, if there is any excellence, if there is anything worthy of praise, think about these things.

Php 4:9  What you have learned and received and heard and seen in me—practice these things, and the God of peace will be with you.

Jesus said in John 14: 1, (KJV): “Let not your hearts be troubled. Believe in God; believe also in me.”

I also love Matthew, chapter six. Near the end of the chapter Jesus says to seek God and His righteousness first and all these things will be added to you. He’d been talking about food and clothing and how God provides for the birds of the air and the lilies of the field and that we are much more precious to God than those.    Make Ree's Barbecue Meatballs ahead of time for the perfect stress-free, game-day dish.

(photo from https://www.pinterest.com/explore/church-picnic-games/ )

 

My dad worried that my mom would spend or give away any money he’d saved for their retirement when he died. Then she died first and he was totally shocked and unprepared.

My mom knew blindness ran in her family so she learned to read braille and typed on a special braille machine to make books for those without vision. She never lost her sight even into old age.

So I learned that worrying doesn’t do any good and it’s harmful to our health. Also, it’s a lack of faith in God which is insulting to the great “I Am.”

So when I worry, I stop and tell God I’m sorry. Then I pray about the situation.

Jesus spoke about making plans in Luke 14:28-32, (KJV):

Luke 14:28: “For which of you, desiring to build a tower, does not first sit down and count the cost, whether he has enough to complete it?

Luk 14:29  Otherwise, when he has laid a foundation and is not able to finish, all who see it begin to mock him,

Luk 14:30  saying, ‘This man began to build and was not able to finish.’

Luk 14:31  Or what king, going out to encounter another king in war, will not sit down first and deliberate whether he is able with ten thousand to meet him who comes against him with twenty thousand?

Luk 14:32  And if not, while the other is yet a great way off, he sends a delegation and asks for terms of peace.”

What He’s saying here as He continues to speak in the following verses is that if you decide to become His disciple, there is a cost. You’ll have to give things up that you used to find pleasurable. You may be called to give up your life or your goods.

God wants us to use our minds and think and plan. He wants us to rest in His care for us and He doesn’t want us fretting. I hope He’ll never have to ask me again, “Am I not enough?”

May God be your strength and your portion in whatever comes your way. Amen.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

A Change in Course

I’ve said it before, “My life is not my own.”

Early Sunday morning I thought about the day ahead and then the phone rang. My daughter from up north was calling. I said, “Oh, no.”

Because of the time of day, I rightly assessed the nature of her call, it wasn’t good news. She didn’t ask for my advice but when I heard my young grandson had another fever of 103 degrees Fahrenheit and the pain in his legs from five days ago had now turned into him only being able to stand on his tippy-toes, I told her to take him to the hospital with the best care for children. Her pediatrician agreed, so off they went.

Many years ago one of my sons’ needed to see a specialist for a problem and the doctor told me he didn’t need to see a pediatric specialist. “We’ll just watch it for a while.”

I felt uneasy about it, but I trusted him. Two-three years later, the office hired a pediatric specialist. He told me my son needed an operation. Cosmetically it ended up helping him, but internally and functionally his body had adapted to work around the incorrect configuration. Once the doctor fixed the structure, the body ignored the repair and worked as it always did, imperfectly. “He needed this operation two-three years ago,” he said. “I’m sorry.”

So we’ve dealt with it and moved on.

Last week my grandson had been diagnosed with the flu by his pediatrician, sight unseen. At the hospital, they said it was a virus and his body’s immune system sent enzymes to fight it. They were too high, although not alarmingly off and he was dehydrated. So they monitored his enzymes overnight and gave him an IV to get his fluids up.

As soon as I heard about it, I told her I’d drive up. We asked people to pray. I’ve found this Bible verse true more than once in my life: Philippians 4:6, (KJV):  Be careful for nothing; but in every thing by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known unto God.

Php 4:7  And the peace of God, which passeth all understanding, shall keep your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus.

 

My husband and I rearranged what we could of our schedules. The dr.’s told her the virus could affect individuals in various ways. That night, her oldest son’s digestion erupted and the three adults in the house pitched in to clean up the vomit.

I was the first on the scene, so whenever we babysit and something like that happens I always tell her “You owe me,” and sometimes I add, “big time.”

Her response varies from a laugh to a smile or a comment. Yesterday she said, “I know it!”

We only saw them for about half an hour once they got home in the afternoon. My husband needed to be at work.

When my grandson came in pale and shaky and still on his tip toes a bit I almost started crying. My husband told him to flatten his feet out and he worked at it and then smiled as he regained total balance.

I guess he slept from the afternoon all the way through until morning. The oldest finally got his stomach to settle just after we left.

I’d been doing laundry and cleaning and bringing him water with advice to take it slowly –which he ignored the first time. His poor tummy. I tucked blankets around him and felt his forehead for fever. His grandpa went to buy him ginger ale.

When his mom got home, she sat close to him and I gave her the watered-down ginger ale that I’d swirled to get the bubbles out of.

She fed him a teaspoonful and got close to look in his eyes. She spoke softly and they seemed to be closed off from all the rest of us. I could sense him relaxing. “Mom and my brother are home, all is well now,” radiated from him.

It was so hard to leave. We haven’t seen them in a while. Yet, I’m the one who invited my husband which knocked a day off of our availability.

He took her some pajamas and stuff into the city in the dark of night. I hadn’t thought of that when I asked him to accompany me.

He’s the kind of dad that listens to his kids, so I’m sure she found comfort in him showing up. She said she was glad he made it there, too. She was just trying to figure out if I could extend my stay. I had an appointment today, so that’s the way it goes sometimes.

I’ll see her before too long if my time doesn’t get hijacked again. I make plans and then adjust them when life rears up with an alternate scenario.

I wonder if my son’s misfortune happened to prevent my grandson from going to the wrong hospital and ending up with kidney damage. Only God knows.

May God bless you this last week of February.

Planning to Organize

I’m getting ready for our organization class on January 5, 2017. One important point Regina Leeds makes is that in order to make changes, one has to commit to the process. She is the author of One Year to an Organized Life: From Your Closets to Your Finances, the Week-by-Week Guide to Getting Completely Organized for Good, MJF Books, New York, NY, copyrighted in 2008.

I will recommend this book to the class along with some others and let the student decide which suits their needs. I will quote sparingly. I intend to ask others to offer stories and to be vulnerable if they’re willing.

I got thinking of God’s perspective on order. In Titus 2:1 – 5,  (MKJV)  But you speak the things which become sound doctrine:

Tit 2:2  aged men to be temperate, sensible, discreet, sound in faith, in love, in patience.

Tit 2:3  Let the aged women likewise be in reverent behavior, not slanderers, not enslaved by much wine, teachers of good;

Tit 2:4  that they may train the young women to love their husbands, to love their children,

Tit 2:5  to be discreet, chaste, keepers at home, good, subject to their own husbands, that the Word of God may not be blasphemed. (My underlining)

Also, in Proverbs 31:10, (MKJV), it says, “Who can find a woman of virtue? For her value is far above rubies.

Pro 31:11  The heart of her husband trusts safely in her, so that he shall have no need of plunder.

Pro 31:12  She will do him good and not evil all the days of her life.

Pro 31:13  She seeks wool and flax, and works willingly with her hands.

Pro 31:14  She is like the merchants’ ships; she brings her food from afar.

Pro 31:15  She also rises while it is still night, and gives food to her household, and a share to her young women.

Pro 31:16  She considers a field, and buys it; with the fruit of her hands she plants a vineyard.

Pro 31:17  She binds her loins with strength, and makes her arms strong.

Pro 31:18  She sees that her merchandise is good; her lamp does not go out by night.

Pro 31:19  She lays her hands to the spindle, and her hands hold the distaff.

Pro 31:20  She stretches out her hand to the poor; yea, she reaches forth her hands to the needy.

Pro 31:21  She is not afraid of the snow for her household; for all her household are clothed with scarlet.

Pro 31:22  She makes herself coverings; her clothing is silk and purple.

Pro 31:23  Her husband is known in the gates, when he sits among the elders of the land.

Pro 31:24  She makes fine linen and sells it, and delivers girdles to the merchants.

Pro 31:25  Strength and honor are her clothing; and she shall rejoice in time to come.

Pro 31:26  She opens her mouth with wisdom; and in her tongue is the law of kindness.

Pro 31:27  She looks well to the ways of her household, and does not eat the bread of idleness.

Pro 31:28  Her sons rise up and call her blessed; her husband also, and he praises her.

Pro 31:29  Many daughters have done well, but you excel them all.

Pro 31:30  Favor is deceitful, and beauty is vain, but a woman who fears Jehovah, she shall be praised.

Pro 31:31  Give her of the fruit of her hands; and let her own works praise her in the gates.

Now, in some versions it sounds like the young women are household help, which makes sense since she’s a business woman as well as the wife and household manager.

I went through some of my blogs on planning and organizing and realized that I went from one topic to another. My husband said it’s not surprising, that’s how I am in life, too. So, as I go through this class and get my thinking on track, I hope when I write an article it, too will stay on track.

May God bless you this holiday season!

An Unusual Day

Today we usually have a Ladies’ Bible study, but I suggested we get together for fellowship and a craft day. I invited a recent widow who attends another church via voicemail on her cell phone and didn’t hear from her.

As I entered our church, there she sat with a few other ladies. I brought sewing supplies and books and Bible and tea, etc. Later, I read Psalm 34 and spied her wiping away a few quiet tears. Then when most people were leaving a gal arrived who hadn’t slept much the night before. So I decided to camp there in the kitchen and visit for a few moments before cutting out a pillow cover with a sports motif on it for a Christmas gift.

She had received a cute fleece scarf from one of the ladies and decided that would make great gifts for her grandchildren, so she wanted to go to a somewhat local fabric store. If we have any stores within a half hour drive, most are quilting stores with 100 % cotton material only. I want to make my grandson a pillow with the super hero The Flash on it. I thought possibly the Lord was saying to go with her, so I did. We ended up going further to a Walmart because two fabric stores were closed today. So I bought an extension cord and two boxes of Christmas cards.

I am quite the optimist. It’s already December 21, 2016 and last night I realized that when my computer got cleaned up earlier this year or late last year, my Christmas addresses got deleted. So, last night, as exhausted as I was, I promised myself a half hour transposing the addresses from my paper-bearing planner to the computer. I don’t know if I used an electronic planner if it would be transferable to my computer. I don’t want to know at the moment. Lol

So off we went to the fabric department and while she chose fabric I texted my son in another state and asked if a check for his little guy would work. I kept looking for The Flash fabric and just couldn’t find it anywhere. He has a birthday after Christmas, so I’m going to get online to see if I can find some within reason. I bought a pillow form at the big box store, so I’m a third of the way there.

I cut out a purse for my granddaughter, but lent the sewing machine to the other lady and I took the time to type for my client. I believe his project will be done by Saturday and I even texted him to see if he can meet to pick it up.

So here I am at our church typing this blog at 11:00 p.m. Very unusual – in fact I’ve never done this before in my life. So, now I’m ready to pack up the computer and head for home. Then I’ll send it out and set a small goal for further addresses. I mailed three Christmas cards out today to out of state family and one cousin’s in Canada. There’s no way she’ll receive hers before the twenty-fifth. I try to give hers more time to make it, but if I don’t write it down for late November, it doesn’t get done.

I can’t wait to get started on our dis-organized support group. I’ll write more about that at another time. Right now, I need to hit the road.

May God bless you. 🙂

 

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.

To Speak or to Type

The last time I blogged, my wrists began to bother me, so I decided to use Dragon Speak by Nuance, Company and decided to stop typing. It’s a little slower to use Dragon Speak, so I typed some and spoke some. When I’m blogging and it gets close to midnight I usually click on the publish button so that it shows up on the day I’m actually blogging.

When I begin editing it, I realized that the Dragon Speak had changed a lot of the words. I tried to update it as quick as I could. I need to go back and study how to use it efficiently.

Today I determined to finish the Living Forward plan from Michael Hyatt and Daniel Harkavy’s book of the same name, published by Baker Books, Grand Rapids, MI and copyrighted in 2016. I tried to block off ten hours of my day to work on it, and I wore a light wrist support to avoid injury.

Living Forward Book

Realizing I wanted to blog after using my wrists for that many hours caused me to want to use Dragon Speak automatically.

The authors suggested my notebook might use 10 to 15 pages for the life plan but I was up to page 23 and I still have a couple more categories I want to ponder. It’s probably because I’m a writer, lol. I used a pen and a composition notebook to write about health and just after that my Smart Phone suggested a sleep app that helps a person regulate their sleep time. One of my specific commitments that I wrote down was to blog earlier so I would go to bed earlier. It was a little uncanny that that app came up at that particular moment.

I have been blogging about my sleep pattern and I accessed Google for inspirational quotes. Who knows how they made the connection?

Some of my inspirational quotes came from the Bible and for the financial category I found Philippians 4:19 (ASV), “and my God shall supply every need of yours according to his riches in glory in Christ Jesus.”

That gives me peace. 🙂

I hope you are doing well today. 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.

 

Belief

Product Details

I’ve been reading the book, Where the Wild Rose Blooms, by Lori Wick, copyrighted in 1996 and published by Harvest House Publishers; Eugene, OR.

Two of the characters believe in God and even pray, but they think they can live their lives on their own, with their own strength. The author has the characters relying on their own resources and being proud of their accomplishments, never understanding that their intelligence, their job opportunities, their families, their looks, and their personalities were all a gift from God. Whenever hard things came their way, they could pray and believe God wanted to help them, or they could get mad at Him, stiffen their resolve and push forward.

I remember a friend telling me that she and the children got into a car accident. I asked if they were okay. “We didn’t get hurt,” she said.

“Praise God,” I said.

“I blamed Him,” she said.

We talked a little further, but she didn’t want to, so we changed the subject. She kept a tidy home and I never saw a trace of dirt on her daughter and son when we came over to visit. She liked predictability in life I think.

I’ve noticed that life goes its own way. I make my plans and sometimes things go the way I think they will. Other times, I shift from my list and at the end of the day make an accounting of where the hours went. Sometimes I’m content with it and at other times, the idea that poor choices prevailed slams my brain.

I like believing in God in a way that became new to me as a teenager. Not just knowing about God, but learning that God wanted to be in a relationship with me. Asking God to be in charge of my life frees me to relax and to trust in His guiding hand when things happen that are out of my control. Reading the Bible and being able to understand it occurred after I asked Jesus to be my Lord and Savior. Wanting to serve others doesn’t come naturally to me, but the desire to do so grew after I believed in God in my heart instead of just in my thoughts.

This book by Lori Wick gets into a few of these things some of the time. I like reading fiction that entertains and gets me thinking.

2Corinthians_5:17 , (KJV) says, “ Therefore if any man be in Christ, he is a new creature: old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new.”

That’s how I felt: new inside so that nature shone with a greater beauty and a love for people sprang up in a fuller way. I’m not perfect. I’m not always peaceful when things get rough, I don’t always feel loving when faced with difficult folks, but I’m changed from what I used to be. To God be the glory.

May God bless you. I pray you’ll know Him personally if you don’t already. He knows you and He loves you. He believes in you and He wants you to believe in Him. Just start reading the Gospel of John.

Perseverance, Anyone?

As I read in the book of Luke today, I noticed Jesus telling people to ask and keep on asking. Knock and keep on knocking. Seek and keep on seeking, and ye shall find. I paraphrased it from Luke 11:9.

Matthew 6:33 tells us not to be anxious for anything, another paraphrase.

If you have anything overwhelming you, you are not alone. Hold on to Jesus. Read the Bible for encouragement and direction. Pray and rest in God’s promises. Whatever you are going through, others are, too. My mom used to say, “This too shall pass.”

I heard yesterday that a high percentage of what people worry about never comes to fruition. It might have been 77%. That’s a lot of worrying over nothing.

Well, I am determined to get to bed earlier than normal, so I bid you a great night.

May God bless you.

Being Flexible

I’m not sure if it’s because I’m getting older or if it’s because I’m eating more sugar than I used to, but I ended up with another round of antibiotics starting today.

I was expecting to go to a county fair today and to go for a training session and to accompany my husband through the fairgrounds to see the animals.

All of that and some of my plans for tomorrow disappeared. Yesterday I measured and cut curtains for my daughter and son-in-law’s new house. I intended to finish the cutting and to begin the sewing today, but that too went on hold.

So, I called a friend I’ve been meaning to call for a while and we had a nice visit. Then tonight, my brother called and I enjoyed talking to him.

I saw Proverbs 27:1 (ESV) from a previous blog today: “Do not boast about tomorrow, for you do not know what a day may bring.”

That’s kind of been my life lately, so I’m trying to go with the flow. I have decided to get back to an earlier bedtime. I don’t think staying up late is helping my health any either.

I don’t really like talking about health issues, but sometimes that’s the way it goes. Monday night we got to see my grandson in a soccer game, the first we’ve been able to attend this year. I hope to see the kids before too long. School starts in early September and when autumn hits I begin to think about cold weather heading our way. So, on Sunday I called some friends about getting together for lunch and the chance to catch up in September. We’ve known them for years. We don’t live near them anymore, so we try to keep in touch when we can. I wish it were more often, but it’s better than not at all.

How do you accept the unexpected? Kicking and fighting interruptions? Or are you laid back and looking for the good or the fun in the change of plans? I’m somewhere in the middle.

May God bless you.