Today’s Fun Challenge for Bloggers

Here’s a challenge for all bloggers: Look through your first blog post.

After you finish giggling and rolling your eyes, think about what you just read. Think about the person who wrote it. Think about how life has changed since then. now, congratulate yourself for sticking with it!

For complete transparency, I’ve included my first post from December 2010, and this is what I found:

  • I am still trying to publish a book—a different one this time, but a book, nonetheless.
  • While my speaking ministry has progressed, there are times I still question my ability to tell others of God’s great mercy and grace for us.
  • I still realize I am nothing without Christ. My comfort has nothing to do with how good God is in my life. And the scripture still rings true. His plans are still etched in stone.

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The Shack—What It Is and Isn’t

the-shackI ‘ve seen several rumblings over the newly released movie, The Shack. I’ve read posts from those who sob because of the brilliance in addressing forgiveness after staggering intense pain and I’ve seen comments about how these slices of information are wrapped in the devil’s web.

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2016: A Year in Review

indeedThe year 2017 is in full swing. Have you reviewed the plans you had made for 2016? How did you do?

I didn’t meet all my goals. In fact, I only met a few.

I wanted to publish my book, Ten Days to Live, but it didn’t happen. Additionally, my speaker’s calendar didn’t fill as much as I had hoped.

But I’m excited because I’m seeing God at work. I see reminders of that every time I sit at my desk. I trust that God’s word is good.

Unanticipated opportunities came before me. Different people crossed my path during 2016 that I believe were divinely lead. For these reasons, I have hope and excitement as I enter 2017.

Are you focused on what you missed or on the serendipitous events that blessed your life last year? It’s a choice … and I choose blessings.

What say you?

 

What Will I Find in 2016?

indeed

Posted on my computer screen as a reminder of God’s promises and purposes for my life.

Every year I try to find a word or theme to follow. For 2015, the word was “Indeed”. I may not be where I want to be, but I am clinging to God’s promises. Verses like:

Exodus 3:7 – God sees us and our plights
Psalm 85:12 – God promises good things
Psalm 121:4 – God promises protection
Proverbs 2:3 – God promises wisdom
Luke 12:7 – Jesus stresses our value
John 4:14 – Jesus promises eternal life
John 8:36 – John promises freedom

In 2015, I saw God’s word in action. I am thankful for remembering the words of comfort offered. He has a plan set for me. He loves me. He has a plan set for you. He loves you, too.

What are you clinging to as 2015 closes and 2016 awakens? What are God’s promises that you are depending on?

Seize 2015

clapping handsWatching the calendar change into a new year can be miserable if there instability surrounding your life. In fact, it can be down-right debilitating. But you can do it! You’ve left dark days and situations behind. Circumstances may follow you into the new year, but you have an opportunity to control your attitude.

Celebrate! You’ve survived 2014, so take a bow. Now is your challenge. Make 2015 your year. Set a plan—your plan.

If you need to bring a fresh look into your world and don’t know how to find one, I suggest you look at https://www.youversion.com/. Reading plans are available for your needs—a scratch for every itch.

May 2015 be filled with wonder and purpose for you. If you’re here to experience 2015, you’ve a reason to practice gratitude.

It’s a sad day … or is it?

Squirrel

Image courtesy of cbenjasuwan at FreeDigitalPhotos.net

It’s a sad day …

I put my flip flops toward the back of the closet. I stood for ten minutes looking at my closet, forcing myself to accept today’s brutal reality.

It’s time. I can’t put it off any longer. I reach into the closet—to an area I haven’t visited for months. My hand runs over the tops of the hangers positioned on the lower bar. I pause, stroking the fabric. Oh, how I hate this day.

Long pants … today I must wear long pants. I’ve been able to wear capris day after day, week after week because the warmth from the sun had caressed my legs and arms. Arms—I need to wear long sleeves, too! Ugh, can it get any worse?

Oh, this is a sad day.

Driving to work, I had to turn on the heat instead of the AC. I flipped on the defroster to dry the heavy due on the windows from the cool night air. Wipers wipe. Warm air bellows from the vents. And the need to turn on my car’s headlights makes it impossible for me to ignore it … summer is over.

Pulling into the parking at my job, a quick movement catches my eye in a grove of oak trees. Walking toward the trees, I stop, noting the movement is accompanied with chattering. Two—no three—squirrels were scampering around and around  tree at break-neck speed. They seemed oblivious to my presence. It was as if the cool morning air had invigorated these little fellas into a raucous game of tag. If I had walked any closer to the trees, I imagined I could see them smiling.

In that moment, I stopped, reflected over other cool mornings when Dad and I watched squirrels scamper through the woods. In a flash I remembered the smells, the feeling of the heady due, and the comfort of the long sleeves.

When had I become so enthralled with capris and flip flops?

No, today isn’t a sad day after all—it’s the first day of the season I wear long pants. And it’s the first time in a long time I’ve been blessed with a memory that reminded me of simpler times.

There is a time for everything, and a season for every activity under the heavens Ecclesiastes 3 

Broken Again … Or Is That Still?

What’s that lump on your neck?

Those were the words that started a new journey of questioning … searching … confirming God’s place in my life. I thought I had dealt with my share of brokenness. Not just with my early years of emotional brokenness due to living in a dysfunctional family followed by years of bad decisions, but the physical brokenness that I experienced just last year, going through brain surgery to remove a tumor the size of my fist.  I thought I had figured life out. I knew that God was with me in April 2011. I knew he loved me and had a plan for my life. I thought life from here on would be smooth sailing.

How pathetic! What arrogance filled my heart!

Here I was facing a physical crisis again. A nodule was discovered on my thyroid. I realized I needed to go through the process again; the process of accepting God’s purpose for my life. I had to once again embrace—with humility—the fact that I did not know what tomorrow held for me. I had to revisit prayers that I offered to God earlier; prayers of complete acceptance and thankfulness.  I read scripture with a new hunger. I knew Truth was the only thing that could carry me through this valley. And the most wonderful thing happened. The scriptures that I always loved took on new life; a brilliance that filled my soul. I was reminded of an important lesson: I need Christ not because I’m broken again, but because I’m broken still.

I still have the nodule on my thyroid. I am scheduled to have a fine-needle biopsy and have penciled a date for surgery … just in case I need it. But Truth is still the same; God is always there, and he has a plan just for me.

I’m totally on board for that!

I’ve Been Nominated … Go Figure, I’m Late

Looking through some old e-mails I noticed I had been nominated for the Versatile Blogger Award by the incredible blogger Karen of A Life Less Scripted! This is such a cool award because it helps spread the word about so many incredible, thought-provoking blogs, like Karen’s. I hope I’m not too late.

Below are the blogs I consider award-winning, also. If I’ve nominated you, it’s because your blog inspired me, made me think, made me laugh or cry (likely both) and I want to celebrate you.

If you find yourself nominated, here’s how you pay it forward:

  • Thank the person who gave you this award
  • Include a link to their blog
  • Select 15 blogs/bloggers that you’ve recently discovered or follow regularly
  • Nominate those 15 bloggers for the Versatile Blogger Award — you might include a link to this site.
  • Tell the person who nominated you seven things about yourself

Here are seven things about me:

  1. I love the breakfast in bed my husband brings me.
  2. I embarrass my kids very easily.
  3. Although I don’t watch too much television, I’m hooked on Big Brother and Dancing with the Stars.
  4. I’m diligently working on finishing my third manuscript.
  5. I like dogs as long as they live in your house and not mine.
  6. I put chocolate in my hot oatmeal.
  7. Most importantly, I’ve been given a second chance in life that I don’t want to take for granted.

Here’s an eclectic list of blogs I’ve nominated:

Shadows of Love

In My Opinion

My Broom

firestorm2012

A Miniature Clay Pot

Steven Watkins

Sober Boots

A Life Less Scripted

When My Father Wakes Up

Wendy Scheaffer Photography

Obsecrations

Katherine’s Daughter

Wordserve Water Cooler

Rachelle Gardner

Donald Miller

Take a moment and visit these blogs; you’ll hopefully agree that your time spent at these blogs is worth the visit.

And thank you, readers. I’m honored and humbled that anyone takes the time to visit here.

Robin

Panic Set In

Panic set in this morning; when my alarm went off it was still dark outside.

Summer is leaving!

My first reaction was to try and make it stay. There were so many experiences I still wanted to have during the Summer of 2012. There were still places I wanted to visit and people I wanted to meet.

But I knew I had no power over my days. David reminds us:

“Lord, remind me how brief my time on earth will be.
Remind me that my days are numbered—
how fleeting my life is.
You have made my life no longer than the width of my hand.
My entire lifetime is just a moment to you;
at best, each of us is but a breath.” Psalms 39:4-6 NLT

I might not have lots of time, but I want to make sure I use every moment as wisely as I can. How about you? Don’t let panic cripple you to the point of missing out on the sunshine and warmth of summer that is still here. Enjoy … make new friends … see new places. Do these things while you still have the time.