Just like that Merry Christmas, Happy New Year and We have the beginning of another 12 month cycle of our lives!
As you reflect on the last year, what do you see? Was it a year of big, bold moves in your life? Was it a year of heartbreak or sickness? Did you learn anything from mistakes or were they all someone else’s fault? LOL! I encourage you to take an honest inventory of yourself as you face a new year. We can only grow and mature as we learn from the past and put into practice the lessons we have learned.
My prayer is that you would experience the peace and Joy that only God can give, as you make the very most of the life that He has given you. The strongest most mature people I know are those who experience great heartache and pain and come out on the other side with peace that can only come from the presence of God in their lives. They hurt, they grieve, they walk through the pain, not around it and still trust God and His will for them. I strive to be one of them. By striving, I mean I continually go to God in times of trials and ask Him for his wisdom and His peace. Then, I do what I feel must be done and trust the results to Him.
May 2020 be your year! A year to reflect upon and say to yourself, “I did good!”
God bless each of you!
It’s here everybody! Just a week away. Are you ready? By that I mean, is your heart ready to experience the joy of the true meaning of Christmas?
I think, in past years, I have robbed myself of the wonder and joy of the celebration, by placing expectations on each event surrounding Christmas. This year my hope and prayer for myself and all of you is that we discover the peace and tranquility of this beautiful season by staying focused on what we are actually celebrating. Let’s not get lost in the chaos of family, friends, parties and gifts to each other. Let us truly treasure the moments we are given to see glimpses of God’s amazing love for us.
It’s not too late to put things in proper perspective as we contemplate all that God has done for us through the birth of Jesus, our Savior.
May your Christmas be a blessed time of love and reflection.
Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!
I seriously don’t know how it happened! One day I was working full time, raising kids, keeping a house in order and trying to be a wife. In the blink of an eye I am in my 60s thinking about retirement. The years sped by so quickly. The children grew and had children of their own. Today I am looking at young couples with kids, doing the same thing I did, and I feel physically exhausted just watching them!
I did not come to know God personally until I was in my late 30s after a horrific tragedy in my life. Oh how I wish that relationship would have begun sooner. I think my life would have been so different. I would have made better decisions and choices for sure! But, the most important thing is that it did happen and God has restored so many areas of my life. I am so grateful to the people along the way, that reached out to me. People who knew God, that came along side of me and encouraged me and cheered me on. Those people listened to me as I tried to make sense of things that never would, and then pointed me to the one who could truly help me.
I know He was there during every phase of my life. There were times when I felt so alone, as if God was silent and far away. But as I look back, it was me who did not include Him in my life. I tried to control and manipulate and handle life on my own, very rarely seeking His input. Life has become so much better as I have learned to talk to God and give up trying to control the outcome of every situation. (It doesn’t always work, but I try!!!)
My “WORD” for this year is trust. Do I really trust that God knows whats best for me and He will guide me as I seek His will for my life? I know one thing. It’s so much easier to give it to Him rather than carrying the full responsibility of the outcome of every situation in my life. I try to do my best and trust Him with the rest. How about you? Sounds way too easy doesn’t it? Believe me when I say it is not easy! We must make a conscious decision to do it and remind ourselves daily, because it is really easy to take it back!
Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding/ in all your ways submit to him, and he will make your paths straight. Proverbs 3:5-6 NIV
God bless each of you as you grow closer to Him.
In recent days I have been in deep thought about this whole recovery thing. What does it look like? How does it work? What are the pro’s of being part of a recovery program/group and how important is that aspect? Many thoughts have come to my mind. So, I would like to share them with you! I know one thing for absolute certain, honesty is key! Coming, just as we are and entering into a conversation with others who are dealing with similar circumstances is invaluable. We don’t need to pretend we have it all together. We don’t need to put on our “phony face”. We don’t need to come prepared to give advice or have all the answers. We simply must be willing to desire a better way of life and put ourselves out there to face whatever it is that is challenging us. No judgements, no expectations of how it should look. I love the 12 steps as they are a remedy with our higher power’s help (of course) to heal and be happy, no matter what our situation. It is possible, but it not easy and it does take time and effort and commitment. If that is something that interests you, don’t put it off. The longer you wait the more difficult it becomes to make a change. God bless each of you on your journey through this life.
We all have a place we go to numb the pain. We all have issues in our life that need to be addressed. What is your escape? Might it be entertainment? (television) What about food? Relationships? exercise? work, drugs, alcohol, shopping???
Are you a fixer? Do you swoop in to rescue others? All the while ignoring your own needs? (codependency) What does a healthy coping mechanism look like? How do we achieve it?
Are you comfortable in your own skin? Most of us struggle with some form of feeling like we are not enough, or we don’t “fit”. We adopt life styles to make us “feel better”. Which usually works until we start slowing down and really feeling our emotions. Is it possible to BE okay when we don’t FEEL okay?
I’m here to tell you, YES IT IS! Stay with what stirs you. Pray through it. Talk through it. Try not to be afraid of it. Hold all that you love with open hands. Do not make idols of things that provide a quick fix. Nothing worth while is usually quick. It takes time and energy and lots of honesty and self examination .
God bless each of you as you make the most of the life that God has given you.
In His Love,
Good afternoon. As I sit here in my office looking out the window, I see trees with no leaves, grass that is brown, there is such a damp chill in the air and yet the 1st days of spring are just right around the corner. It reminds me of life. How we don’t always see the full picture. We feel sad and empty at times as we go through the troubles of this life. Sometimes we just can’t seem to see past the pain. And then…. spring comes. What looked bare and desolate now has color and warmth. God provides those things for us. He knows the future and gives us strength to survive the sorrows and struggles of our days. The bible says “In this world we will have trouble, but take heart for I have overcome the world.” John 16:33b Hold on, trust the living God, do not lose heart. God is a God of mercy and healing. He knows the outcome of every situation and will not leave us defenseless. So, bring on the tulips! I’m ready for a little color!
Merry Christmas everyone! Hope you are enjoying the season and allowing God’s presence to fill you with his love.
We have a series going on here at Access Church titled “The question that answers everything”. Pastor Kevin has been talking for the past 3 weeks about making wise decisions based on our past, our present circumstances and our future goals and dreams. Sometimes, actually most of the time, we base our decisions on emotions. How we feel dictates what we think and what we do. When someone we love dies we are often given the very wise advice not to make any major decisions for at least a year. Why? Because our emotions and our feelings are unstable under those circumstances. Chances are, we will feel differently as time goes by. Our God given emotions are very valuable, they make us who we are. But, making life choices based totally on how we feel is not always productive or in our best interest.
A great question to ask yourself is “what is the wise thing to do?” Where do we turn to get advice that we know is sound. Well……I can tell you what has been helpful to me. I wish I could say that the first place I turn is to God’s word! It should be. The bible is full of advice that will help us to live a life that is full and complete. But sometimes I get side tracked and I look to friends or coworkers for advice, instead of God. After we check things out with God, I would recommend a trusted Christian relative or friend, maybe someone who has been through the same type of struggle we are facing. Many of us might need professional counseling, another very helpful avenue to explore. A great place to start, when you turn to the bible as you are looking for advice is Proverbs. Most of this book is written by the wisest man who ever lived, Solomon. I would encourage you to check it out next time you are overwhelmed with life. I hope and pray that this New Year 2015, will be full of good choices, Godly advice and wise decisions as you navigate through this thing called life!
I am not quite sure why I put that exclamation point at the end of the title of this blog. It’s not at all how I am feeling. Let me fill you in. Exactly 5 days ago I woke up feeling a bit under the weather, by noon that day, I could barely move! (I know, I know, a bit dramatic!) I was struck with the Influenza A virus. This monster is no little 24 hour bug…it is full out war on your body. Fever, chills, cough, nausea, body aches, headache, extreme fatigue for the first 2 days I seriously thought I was dying, it seemed like an easy way out! By the third day, the fever broke and I felt so grateful to God for all of the blessings in my life. I had a fresh empathy for people who deal with chronic illness and pain. I thought to myself “how do they do it God, how do they keep a positive attitude?”
As I went to bed that evening I felt positive and uplifted, feeling better, only to awaken in the middle of the night with fever/chills and lots of coughing! Here we go again, I guess I will be finding out first hand how they do it!……..it’s easy to be positive when things are looking up. It takes a person of strength and character to maintain that disposition when things don’t go the way we want. To be completely honest with you, I could use a little more “strength and character”. The trials of life will come and go, God treasures our love as we stay close in the midst of illness, suffering, broken relationships, or whatever it might be. With a fever blister on my lip and ribs aching from a deep cough I choose to say “thank you God, for so many blessings, and I wait for the change that he will make in my heart!” Happy New Year!