Tuesday, March 15, 2016

Let's All Be Brave... in our own way!

It was a year ago this week that my husband was going in for his 3rd knee surgery.
As I was telling a girlfriend the schedule for surgery day, 
when I came to the part of him being put under, I paused.
An unexpected lump came into my throat and I almost lost it.
As I fought back tears, my friend said, "It's no big deal.  It's not heart surgery!"
Um... WHAT?
I was very aware of the fact that this was not a life or death surgery, but there is always risk when you're under anesthesia and beside, this is MY husband!
I was scared.

As I posted in the beginning of this year, my one word for the year is
I didn't pick it.
It picked me.
I've been working on a project that is taking me out of my comfort zone and I assumed that the word BRAVE would apply to this new venture.
It does.
But that's not all.
This is a challenging week for me personally and whereas I'm more than aware that many are facing far more difficult circumstances, some life and death, this is MY tough circumstance and I need to be BRAVE.
Bravery looks different for everyone.
For some, being brave means walking away from a difficult relationship.
For others, being brave means staying, and working through it.
Being brave could mean taking a risk and following your dream,
writing that book, launching that company, going on that mission trip...
Or being brave might mean trusting your life into someone's hands for a time, giving up control.
I know it is different for everyone, that's why I will not compare my brave moments to yours.
For no matter how extreme or different the circumstances, bravery demands the same of all of us - 
Ultimately I know I can be BRAVE this week because I trust the God that made me.
I trust His word to be true and I trust that He will do exactly what He says He will do.
Every time.
All the time.
Joshua 1:9
"Have I not commanded you?  Be strong and courageous.  Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged, for the Lord your God will be with you wherever you go."
Life is promised to bring everyone challenges.
Some are extremely difficult and others are mildly uncomfortable, but
Let's All Be Brave!
And encourage one another to trust God's promises to be true.
He is with us, so we can be

Friday, March 11, 2016

Learning From the Big Boys

Something that has been a mixed bag as a parent is kiddos' team sports.
Sometimes we get a good coach, sometimes we don't.
Sometimes the kids really want to play the sport and learn, 
sometimes their parents have forced them to be there!
But one thing has remained true.
When my children have been placed on teams where they are the youngest, 
least experienced or aren't the best player, they rise.
They are called higher by those around them and they greatly improve and grow.
It's awesome to see!
Little kids mentoring other little kids without even knowing it!

This is one of those awesome years for us as my little slugger got bumped up a level in baseball and now is in the youngest and least experienced category.
Without talking about the fact that there are some amazing players on his team, he just longs to be better.  He has seen these bigger boys crack that ball and he wants to do it too!
He is pushing himself, watching, learning, trying harder.
I love it!
In life, it's so important to surround ourselves with people who call us higher.
People who are doing life smarter, better, healthier, wiser than we are.
People who live like we aspire to live.
Watch them, learn from them, listen to them, and grow.

Proverbs 13:20 tells us that the one who walks with the wise, will become wise.

If we are spending most of our time with people who simply stroke our ego, 
it's likely we are not growing.
However, if we spend more time with folks who have been in the game longer than we have and have acquired more skills and wisdom along the way, we will grow, rise and become wise.
Are you at the top of your team?
Perhaps it's time to bump up a level and learn some new things from the big boys!

Happy Friday!

Wednesday, March 9, 2016

No Substitute for the Truth

2 little weeks ago I posted about missing the window to prune my roses, but cutting them back anyway.  Statistics tell us that as parents we have small windows to teach our children certain things, expose them to various experiences and flavors and encourage desired behaviors, and if we miss those windows... well, who knows what will happen to our kids!!
And if we don't prune our roses in the right season, we're doomed!

But just as I know that it's never too late for change, growth and transformation in God's economy, I decided to hack down my roses anyway and to discipline my children with the hopes that God is not bound by a certain window of time and nothing is impossible with Him!

Well, just 2 weeks later, here is that same rose bush!

Only 2 weeks later and there is visible, healthy growth!
As I was looking at this rose bush today, aside from being thrilled that I didn't listen to the gardeners guide to healthy roses!, I was struck with another bit of truth.
We've been suffering from a much publicized drought here in California for quite some time.
We ration our water and only water our gardens on Mondays and Thursdays or else we get fined heavily!  Our plants are limping along just fine, but this past weekend we got some solid rain! And I kid you not, the growth after the rain is undeniable.  Almost the very next day we could see new shoots and buds spring forth on our plants and bushes!  It's unreal.
We never see that obvious growth from the sprinklers or the hose.
But the rain, pure, falling from heaven rain, nourishes like none other and spurs new growth immediately.  There is no substitute for the rain.
Made me think of Truth.
Word of God Truth.
Nothing yields more growth and abundance in our lives than the Truth of God.
So many other substitutes can help us limp along, scrape by and "make it."
But there is no substitute for the absolute Word of God that is pure Truth, falling from heaven, to heal our wounds, bring light into darkness, cleanse our mistakes, remove our scars, and
spring forth new life in dead, hopeless areas.  
It's just unmistakable.
Where do you need new growth in your life?
Are you looking to other things to nourish you and bring about change?
I encourage you to simply read the Bible, surrender to God's Truth and allow His Word to transform you in the healthiest, longest lasting way.


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