devotionals

Anxious for nothing

I can’t really say that we aren’t anxious right now. We all seem to be on pins and needles waiting to see how all of this turns out.

I’m currently sitting in a doctor’s office (yikes) and was quarantined because I left the country 2 months ago. Masked and all, I sat until the nurse came in and told me I had the all clear. I was given a time out of life for over an hour though. Talk about social distancing.

So, do we panic, buy all the toilet paper and sanitizer we can? Do we hunker down and wait or go about our daily lives? Do we replay worst case scenarios over and over or focus our minds on what is good and true?

I’m in the middle camp here. I want to respect the authorities that tell me to have a heathy dose of fear but I don’t want to run to the extreme camp of TP hoarding and black market sanitizer.

Here’s why. At the end of the day, at the end of this virus, even at the beginning really, my hope lies in trusting that God is sovereign and His plans are good. Pandemic and all. State of emergency and all. 1 Peter 5:7 says to cast all our anxiety on Him because He cares for us. Not only that but I don’t just put my hope in what the authorities say or tell us to do. Yes, I respect them but my hope and trust is in the Lord. Man will fail me, I will get false information and I could be mislead. Psalm 20:7 says some trust in chariots and some trust in horses but we trust in the name of the Lord.

So as for us, we will use these next few weeks of life disruptions as time to spend with each other, get outdoors, catch up on some reading and Netflix, and be mindful of ways people around us may need help. We will trust the sovereignty of God and know He is good even in uncertainty. John 16:33 is interesting because Jesus promises that we will have trouble in this world (thanks Adam and Eve!) but He also promises peace and that He will overcome the world.

So, what are you trusting in? The news? Social media? Are you constantly watching the stock market rise and fall? Are you trusting in your job or social status or maybe all your accomplishments? Or are you at your wit’s end and have no clue what to do? Wherever you land, there is Someone who has a plan and you can trust in. That doesn’t mean life will be easy and you will escape pain but you will have certainty that no matter what He loves you and is for you.

Dear God, We are heading head first into a period of uncertainty and it is easy to panic and stress out over things we don’t know or can’t control. The truth is that only You control our lives anyways and you are for us even when it seems like things are falling apart. Focus our minds on what is good, right, pure, and true like you tell us in Your word. Let us place our trust in You alone. May we be respectful of this situation but not be controlled by fear. We pray for those that are sick and scared right now. Heal their bodies and minds like only You can. Give us a new appreciation of health and life. Thank you for today. Amen

devotionals · everyday living · Life & Faith · Uncategorized

Time

I just read the story of Jesus death and it weighs so heavy on my heart. I wanted to write and the only thing I could muster, really there are no words, was this poem. Take it for what it is. Broken words from a broken person.

Time:

You were utterly alone, poured out and broken.

Your time had come.

The world did not understand you, they shunned and beat you.

Your time had come.

You had prayed, cried out, and begged for your Father’s mercy.

Still, Your time had come.

You were unrecognizable, carrying your cross to that hill.

Your time had come.

You had to have wondered, questioned, and yet you knew.

This was Your time.

The crushing blows of the nails ripping through tendon, bone and the blood that flowed.

Your time had come.

Your side pierced, yet not one broken bone.

Your time had come.

Your heart bursting under the physical pain and the emotional strain of the sins of this world.

Your time had come.

Yet, You forgave your accusers and loved them still.

In that moment, my time has come.

I am free from the sins that screamed Your name, caused the tears that streamed down your face and the lashings on your back.

My time has come.

I am free from myself, a life of sin and death, an eternity of separation from You.

My time has come.

And as the world watched, waiting, expectantly, on the third day,

Your time came and You saved the world.

❤️🙏 ✝️

Life & Faith · Uncategorized

Filling your well…

In my last post, I wrote about wells. Our wells really refer to our souls, our innermost beings that house our emotions, values and core beliefs. Our souls are the most central part of who we are.

So, we obviously want to fill our wells with good things, Godly things. But what does that really mean?

It means I need to fill my well. Fill my soul. Period. I either fill it with things that make me more aware of the presence of God in my life or I fill it with a lot of things that seem important but only numb my heart to my real purpose and the presence of God. It’s my choice.

Lately I’ve filled my wells with words. I’ve read a lot of books, written some words and I have spent more time reading the only Word that reveals Truth in my life. I’ve spent more time moving my body which fuels my soul and fills my well. Early mornings and cool, fresh air fill my well and center my days. Being present while investing time with the people in my life has filled my well. Dreaming, setting goals and thinking about future plans is also a part of filling my well.

So filling your well is imperative to spiritual and personal growth. Take some time this week and think about your well. Make a list of the things you prioritize, the things you invest time and attention to. Are you filling your well with good things? Do you even take time in this busy life to invest in yourself?

Go check your well.

❤️-A

Uncategorized

Wells and walls…{pt. 1}

I’ve tried to start this blog post for about a month. Honestly it’s been on my heart for longer but here I am and hopefully, you’re here to read my heart today.

I’m going to break this up into parts so you’re not drooling as you snore but I pray this helps someone or at least starts an honest conversation within your own heart.

{WELLS}

Generally used as source of water, sustenance for the body, essential for living. Spiritually speaking, as believers, our wells can refer to our souls; the innermost part of our spirit that makes us who we are.

Here are some references to people and to wells in the Bible:

-Hagar at the well, Rebekah and Jacob, Moses and Zipporah, Abraham and the Wells that we’re stopped up by the Philistines, Isaac redigging the wells of his father Abraham, Isaac even dug a well as an oath or covenant to the Lord, the woman that Jesus met at the well…..(so many more!)

Wells:

W-WHAT do I put in my wells?

What do I fill my mind with daily? Am I being intentional and carrying through with daily Bible reading, prayer, praise, fellowship with other believers? Do I let the world influence me more than I influence the world? Am I taking care of this earthly vessel or am I stressed out all the time? What do I put in my physical body?

E- ESSENTIAL…

Is everything in my well essential to producing life or am I holding on to habits, hangups, emotions or apathy that causes my well waters to get murky?

L-LIFE GIVING…

When I am filling my well with the essential, life giving water I need to survive spiritually, I am complete in Christ and then I can share this with others.

L-LIFE GIVING LOVE for others…

I can draw this out of the essential, life giving waters of my well. I can offer this gift, this nourishment to others.

S-STRENGTH for me…

Isaiah 58:11 states that the Lord will guide us, strengthen us, and satisfy our needs. We will be like well watered springs, whose waters never fail. All of this for those who fills their souls with the essential life giving water that only the true Lover of our souls can give.

But wait a minute…

Sometimes our wells get pretty messed up. We start to hold onto relationships, habits, and to the things that make our wells either completely dry up or fill up with mud. We get into this auto pilot life and we stop checking our wells. Our souls suffer and we do too.

Best. News. Ever.👇🏻👇🏻👇🏻

God is here to help you REDIG.

Just like Isaac had to redig the wells of his father Abraham, you can too. (Read the story here…) Digging isn’t easy, you may get some blisters, you may have a sore back, but you’ll have a new well open for the essential Water that you need.

Jesus,

Help us to inspect our wells making sure we are putting everything that is essential into them. Open our eyes to take out the things that shouldn’t be there. Show us when we need to cover up the old well and dig a new one. Sometimes it’s hard but we know when we are so full of your life giving water, we can share it with others. Fill me up so I can be poured out for you. -Amen

❤️

devotionals · everyday living · family · Life & Faith

Rainbows in the clouds…SOL Tuesday

Grief is strange. The loss of a person, the loss of a life once lived, the loss of relationships, the loss of a routine, the loss of normalcy. These losses created a grief in our hearts that festers and grows at the strangest of times.

But then…God sends a rainbow in the middle of the darkest clouds. A reminder that grief is a catalyst for growth, that even in grief there is hope.

Remember to always look for the rainbow. It may be small, it may be faint but it’s there.

everyday living · family · Life & Faith · Slice of Life Challenge 2022 · teaching · Uncategorized

Stop and take the picture. SOL Tuesday

This is taken from one of my Instagram posts from last week.

It’s that time of year when time seems to float over the mass of my to do lists and messy schedules, over my classroom lessons and my kids extracurricular activities, over weekend plans and planning to check in on friends and family, over all the things that seem to completely leave me floundering and often upset, for no reason other than I’m completely overwhelmed.

The past few weeks have been exhausting so I think I have to remember it’s ok not to complete the lists, to simply breathe and let things go. It’s ok to take a minute when everyone else is screaming for your attention to just be. So stop and take the picture, take it all in, just be.

The hot air balloons that I stopped to marvel at when I should have been doing something else.
devotionals · everyday living · family · Life & Faith · Slice of Life Challenge 2022 · teaching · Uncategorized

What Do You Know? SOL Tuesday

I was listening to a podcast this morning on my way to work as I often do. Emily P. Freeman was giving life advice in the soothing, willowy, calm way only she can. (Check out “The Next Right Thing” on Spotify. I tried to link it but can’t.)

She talked about writers writing about what they know as a daily practice.

So, here I go. Here are some things I currently “know”. (Insert all the air quotes here because, WHAT do I REALLY know?)

I know that teenagers are like roller coaster. Up and down they go, where they stop, nobody knows. Unless you have food. They will stop for food. I know my daughter and son need time to decompress after a long day at school. I know they don’t really need advice but a listening ear.

I know Colorado is hot and dry and I need to wear more sunscreen lest I dry up like an old prune.

I know I am still waiting to take the best yearbook photo ever. I’m 42. Still haven’t.

I know my husband is kind and wants to take care of us even when he is away. I know he loves to cook and I love to eat what he cooks.

I know gas is expensive and I am like an Uber these days. I know I need to streamline our schedules and I’m trying my best.

I know we just went from zero to a thousand miles an hour and we just started school. I know I need to place boundaries around our time because no one is truly happy when we’re exhausted.

I also know that I am truly blessed to have a crazy schedule and healthy kids and a loving husband. I know these chaotic moments and schedules will pass and in a few years, I’ll be calling my kiddos instead of driving them around.

I know we have new neighbors that are kind and good and stop everything when my car battery dies to help out. I know I love our little house we are crammed into. I know I’ll miss it later.

I know these moments are fleeting and fast. I know life is hard and altogether good, if I look for that goodness. I know God has sustained me over the last few years, and He always will, even if His provision looks so different than I ever imagined.

So, what do you know?

James 4:14 “Yet you do not know what tomorrow will bring. What is your life? For you are a mist that appears for a little time and then vanishes.”

everyday living · Life & Faith · Slice of Life Challenge 2022 · teaching · Uncategorized

Sojourners…SOL Tuesday

The tension is palpable, anxiety is almost like an electric current. New faces surround me; they are fresh and yet already exhausted. This is just the beginning of the journey.

The beginning of the journey of making another little family that will love us and also rip our hearts in two. The journey of finding out more about ourselves than we will ever be able to teach to others. The journey of learning what is truly important and what can wait for tomorrow, or never.

We smile, we move quickly as we rush to make magic of the piles left over for us to pilfer. Minds racing with information and ideas, some will be made tangible and others we will soon forget.

We rush, we slow down, we learn, we grow, we feel anxious, we feel overwhelmed. We feel love and loved. We feel like we are the luckiest people. We feel like teachers.

everyday living · family · Life & Faith · Uncategorized

Good advice (SOL Tuesday)

I was going to write about something totally different but then as I was sitting and waiting for my kids at their music lessons, I heard a mom say a profound thing. I’m sure she didn’t even think about it and it was not meant in a profound, advice giving way.

She said, “Walk with your head up, otherwise it can be dangerous.” Ok, so hear me out. I know she was telling her child not to run into a wall because she was holding her tablet however, those words spoke to my whole being.

Walking with my head up means I know who I am and I know my worth. I understand my worth is not simply seen in what I do here on earth but in Who I belong to for eternity. Walking with my head up means walking with confidence, not pride. It means showing grace and mercy in a way I know I’ve been shown those things. It means holding less to earthly things and things that matter for eternity. Walking with my head up means rembering my gifts and talents and giving those things away with love. Walking with my head up means remembering where I’ve been but not dwelling on the past. Walking with my head up means planning for the future but being present now.

So, thanks for the advice random mom. I appreciate the reminder.