devotionals · everyday living · family · Life & Faith · Uncategorized

Contentment

I went home and it was good, bittersweet to see the changing faces of the people of I love. The way that places shift and grow into bigger versions of their former selves.

This time going home made me realize I’m exactly where I need to be. Instead of longing for what was, I was happy to spend time with the people that fill my heart and then I was longing to go back to my new home.

Home has changed so many times. I recently told someone that I don’t really have roots. I’ve never been that person that has set roots so deep in a place that they could never imagine leaving. Although there is nothing wrong with that, it’s never what God intended for me. I know that now.

I’ve lived in and left so many places. They all knew a version of me that has grown and shifted and changed. Maybe having roots that grow wherever I go is part of that process. That process of learning to be content in any place God sets me.

Today I will be content. Change will come inevitably and my roots will grow but maybe I’ll never be set in one place. That’s okay. I’ll be at peace wherever I go. I’ll work at that process daily.

1 Timothy 6:6-7 “But godliness with contentment is great gain. 7 For we brought nothing into the world, and we can take nothing out of it.”

everyday living · Life & Faith · Uncategorized

Signs

I saw a guy holding a sign the other day as he stood beside the road. You know the sign, the cardboard sign that announces someone is homeless and needs help. This man’s sign caught my attention. “Homeless: need help; too ugly to be a prostitute but I need work. Anything.”

It was interesting that this man had not written “Homeless:need money, anything will help.” His phrasing, if not a bit crass, was telling of where he was at this point in his life (homeless), what he needed (work) and possibly where he had come from (potentially a hard worker in the past). I often look at anyone holding a sign and think about what led them to this point. I think about the man who lost everything due to addiction and now can’t even feed himself or the woman who left her abusive husband, hitting rock bottom with nowhere to turn. Often I judge these people, wandering if they truly need help or is it all a scam?

These signs also make me think about what my sign would say. If I had to write a cardboard sign right now, what would it reveal about my current state and what I need right at this very moment? It humbles my heart to think of putting one statement on a sign for everyone to see, criticize and judge.

So here’s the exercise for today. Make your sign. Where are you now and what do you need? Here’s mine: “Weary traveler, almost home. Need a place to rest.” Since I’m physically traveling, this is literal. However, there is a lot of spiritual implication there as well. I’ve always had a struggle with rest and as I’ve gotten older, I realize the necessity of it, yet it’s hard for me to rest and just be, knowing that God is in control.

So, what would your sign be? It will probably change through seasons of life, or maybe even daily. Next time you see someone with a sign, remember they are a person, with a story, and extend some grace.

What would your sign say?
everyday living · Life & Faith · Slice of Life Challenge 2022 · Uncategorized

Garden reflections…(SOL Tuesday)

They say deaths happen in three’s. Maybe that’s an old wives tale. At any rate, it seems to always be that way. Lately I’ve thought about death. Not in a sad or morbid way but what will the next life, heaven, be like? I’ve read about it in the Bible and it seems like a beautiful place unparalleled to anything where the greatest of celebrations will take place, forever.

I walked through the Lauritzen Gardens in Nebraska as I am here on a work trip with my husband. I’m not sure Nebraska is my place but walking through these amazing gardens rich with color made me extremely reflective. So here is what I thought about.

What is heaven like?

Maybe a tree, towering tall with no broken limbs, strong and sturdy.

Maybe a meadow, lush and green, where anyone can run, as fast as they want.

Maybe a sunny sky that never makes us hot, only the perfect temperature.

Maybe a stolen moment with the people you loved on earth, still knowing exactly who they are, cherishing no broken relationships.

Maybe a perfect body, rewinding the clock to cartwheels and strong muscles, moving anywhere you want.

Maybe it will be animals that roam freely and never fight. Bees that buzz but never sting, no more bites that break our skin.

Maybe a beautiful meal set at a table for so many friends and family that you can’t wait to see, you can’t wait to catch up with.

Maybe a house with so many rooms, one made especially for you, your favorite colors, the comfiest mattress, fluffy pillows and just the right scented candle glowing it’s light beside an open window.

Maybe it’s complete communion and unbroken fellowship with the people and the world around you, no distractions, no worries.

Maybe it’s seeing the Light of the world and nothing else, because nothing else will matter.

Maybe it’s complete peace and joy and singing and working and playing, side by side in the most beautiful gardens in the center of a city that hustles and bustles. The hustle and bustle is not the hustle and bustle that reflects chaos but order. Maybe everyone knows their role and does it so completely, with no error.

Maybe it’s loving completely and being so loved that you can actually feel it; maybe that love will shine through us.

Maybe we will focus so much on the Love and Creator that nothing else will matter anyways.

The rose garden at Lauritzen Gardens
#home · everyday living · family · Uncategorized

Where I’m from…SOL Tuesday

Kicking off summer and it always take me back to days when I slept on our front porch swing surrounded by piles of library books and comfy pillows.

Going back home looks much different these days but I will be going home soon-in 2 weeks actually! So in honor of that trip and where I am from, I am sharing the link to a blog post from a few years ago where I used the “Where I’m from” poem format to share a slice of where I come from.

Please enjoy my poem at the link below (It’s honestly one of my favorite posts ever.)and feel free to write your own. It’s a lovely way to reflect and remember where you’re from.

https://afrontporch.wordpress.com/2018/06/09/where-im-from/

The WV hills-where I’m from🤍
#home · everyday living · family · Life & Faith · Uncategorized

What we do…

Have you ever thought about the things that you do? I mean the little things. The other day, after I cleaned my kitchen, I folded the dish towel and put it beside the sink. It immediately hit me that the one person I had seen do this all the time was grandma, my mom’s mom. My grandma always said the kitchen wasn’t completely clean until you folded the towel and put it beside the sink. Funny, right?

Then when I use blue Dawn dish soap to clean my dishes I think about my mom and the big plastic bottle that sat by the window sink when I was a kid. And Comet, the cleaning product-I have used it because I remember my mom using it.

My dad is an expert painter. So much so that he never uses that blue painter’s tape. He has a steady hand and eye. I like to think I’ve got some of his creative spirit and skill when I try to paint a room. Although I may be the messiest painter ever so that’s debatable.

My grandpa, my dad’s dad, used to dunk graham crackers or Nilla Wafers in milk. I remember him sitting at the kitchen bar, right beside the wall phone, showing us (me, my sister and cousins) how to hold the graham cracker in long enough until it started to get too soggy. I still love graham crackers and milk to this day.

These are small things that come to mind-things that I do now because of someone else. These small things may not make a big difference but I still do them.

I wonder what we all do because of other people. The sum of who we are is made up of all these little things we do or say. Who we are today is a history of little things. What little things do you do today because of someone else?