What a wonderful holiday this was. All of my children came home for Christmas but unfortunately they all had to go back home. My daughter lives in Indiana with her family; my son lives in Texas where his job is and my youngest is in Kansas, living the life she wants with her horses. The week went by so fast. I sat and reflected in my journal this morning wondering why they all have to live so far away? Why am I here in Missouri? Even my brothers, whom I miss dearly, are all on the East Coast and my mother is in Maine. What in the world am I doing here? Other than the fact that I fell in love with a Missourian Man and this is where he lives. But the bigger picture is that I’m here because God has placed me here. Why? Not sure. For how long? Not sure.
I am going through a season of confusion lately. I am finding my life does not have a whole lot of meaning and purpose to it. I’m 50 years old and want to make some changes? I like being a librarian but I don’t like the health factors that are involved with it. I handle dirty, dusty, books with germs on them all day long. Our building has some mold issues which really wreaks havoc on my allergies too. I like working part time and digging into my writing part time from home, but I can see that it’s not going to be financially feasible for me; at least I don’t think so. I don’t know that for sure yet. I have not given it a real fair chance. I’m not thrilled to be here in Missouri but I don’t know where else to go or if I’m supposed to go. Indiana? East Coast? Missouri? I don’t know.
As I get ready to begin my one line Bible Study with my new Sista’s, I can’t wait to see what unfolds in my life. Proverbs is such a wonderful poetic book filled with wisdom. I have always loved Proverbs 4:20-23. I am aiming to memorize it in three different versions over the next few months. It is MY personal roadmap with God.

It comes down to memorizing Proverbs 4:20-23
My daughter, pay attention to my words;
Listen closely to my sayings
Don’t lose sight of them; keep them within your heart;
For they are life to those who find them and health to one’s whole body.
Guard your heart above all else, for it is the source of life.

God, I pray that I would pay close attention to what you have in store for me. I know you’ve called me to part time for a reason. I know my health was really bad and in some respects it still is. I know you want me to work on this body and mind together. I know that you desire for me to work hard at what you’ve got in store for me. The above scripture is the one that I want to bind into my heart and keep it there all year long. I have fallen off the path so much in 2012 and I have not paid attention to your calling on my life. I have fled from situations that you’ve told me to stay and endure. I have not trusted when you were telling me to just trust. I have not been kind when you’ve told me to be kind. I have not let things go when you’ve told me to let go. Lord, I pray that as I dig into the book of Proverbs with my new On Line Sista’s, that you will touch us all, guide us all, grow us all and call us closer to You.

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I Want To Go Back

              I want to go back to the East Coast.  I had so much fun in the short time I was there.  I don’t know what draws me to this area.   Is it family? Is it the beautiful scenery? I think it is the combination of both. I am so happy that I had the opportunity to see my brothers and, of course, mom.  But there is a special tenderness in the air in New England.   I want to go back.

               When I looked out my hotel window and saw the water with the boats, I knew I was home. When we drove around and I saw lobster traps piled up and boats on the side of the road, I knew I was home. I could smell the salt air.  As soon my brother and I got out of the car, I took a very deep breath and although it was very cold, it was salty, fresh and welcoming.  I could smell the wood-burning stoves from the homes along the cliffs. I want to go back.
               The ole New England homes were decorated with the fresh pine that smelled like a freshly lit Pine Yankee Candle.  The Mid West doesn’t have a whole lot of pine so the homes are decorated with fake greenery. It’s pretty but not charming; and it has no fresh scent.  As I walked around Freeport, I saw the decorations of big red bows, beautiful white lights and sea shells hanging as ornaments. It was not tacky and had nothing flashy. It was so New England. I want to go back.
               The horse and buggy was pulling the visitors around and every time a camera would come out, the driver would stop and respect the request for a picture. The carriage was adorned with  fresh greenery and the horses had big red bows on their reigns.  I want to go back.
               Mom’s house was all in blue and creamy off white; so New England. She had the old braided rugs on the floor that were in Grammy’s house. Those rugs were made by my grams own hands. They have my Uncle’s military uniform woven into the structure along with other materials from many years ago. The walls held many pictures of the ocean scenery with sea gulls standing along the foamy tide. I want to go back.
               The family was sitting around the Christmas tree that was delicately decorated in all reds and whites. The bow on the top that draped down the front was made by my sister-n-law and added just the right touch. It was so different seeing my mother’s Christmas stuff out which really wasn’t hers at all. It was Bill’s but now in some ways hers as well. It didn’t matter to me though, it was beautiful; the whole house was so tastefully decorated and there I sat, taking it all in while my brothers and Bill’s son, Kyle playing their guitars and us all singing. It wanted time to stop right there and remain in the gap, in the beautiful, peaceful, joyful Christmas gap. I want to go back.
               Saying goodbye was very difficult. It still brings tears to my eyes. I wanted to stay in mom’s arms longer. Oh God, just give me a little bit more time, please. I wanted to listen to my brother’s sing, tell jokes even if I was the target of the punch line. I wanted to sit with my sister-n-law longer and visit about dogs, the weather or whatever came across our minds. I wanted to help Bill do the dishes, well not really but I would have. I wanted to pet Leo one more time. I want to go back.
               I came home to no-one. My kids are all gone. They are in different states. It made me miss them even more. My husband was not home; he hardly ever is, he travels every week. I came home to an empty house. I walked in, glad to be with my own surroundings but I felt empty. I didn’t even have my dog until later in the afternoon when my friend brought her to me.  I have NO family here. I have no one to sing with, to sip coffee with, to shop with, and to talk with; it’s an empty feeling.  I want to go back.
               One day I will be near my family. I don’t know when but I do know that I will wait upon the Lord to help me and I will trust His Word and His plans. Until then, I will try to be more appreciative of what I have and enjoy what I have. I have great friends here and I am so very thankful for that. But one day, just maybe I will go back.
Psalm 130:5 NCV I wait for the Lord to help me, and I trust His Word.

What’s in a Penny?

What’s in a Penny?
What is the object of your desire into your life? Are you waiting for results of something? A job interview, blood work or results from some other type of medical test? Are you waiting for answers to prayers that you’ve been praying for years and years and have yet to hear? Infinite patience produces immediate results. Being patient is probably one of the most difficult tasks we are called to do.
When I take time to sit before the King in the morning and am feeling infinitely patient, I feel very connected to God and nothing is truly missing from my life. The time alone with God, just one on one brings me infinite patience which brings me peace.
There have been many difficult times throughout my life and when I come close to God, I feel the stress and fears melt away, one by one. I’m trying to learn that everything happens for a reason and that which does happen is for the best. I know that the things that seemed so calamitous now seem to be blessings.
For instance, I have been shared with you all that I am working now part time and I have no idea as to what is going to happen next, but it’s something I know I’ve been called to do. I have been very sick lately and that was my main reason for doing this but I really heard God say, Beth, trust ME. I will take care of your needs. It will be okay for you to work part time and in your time at home you will write for ME. I have always worked full time. I don’t really know what it’s like to work part time and slow down. Since I have been home though, God has blessed my fingers at the keyboard. I have had conversations with such faithful people that have lifted my spirits. I have had some gals pray with me and get this; every single medical test that I have had since working part time has come out fine! My allergies are great and my stress level has been lowered. I believe that had I not had so many medical things hit me all at one time, I would not have requested to go part time.
I believe our job as Christians is not to say how or when, to the calling of God, but to say yes to God. After you say yes to God then give thanks for the task ahead. You will truly be blessed, even in the waiting process. The manna will fall hard and fast.
I read this morning something very profound by Dr. Wayne Dyer in his book Getting in the Gap: Making Conscious contact with God Through Meditation:
He wrote: Every time I pick up a coin on the street, I view it as a symbol of the abundance that God sends into my life, and I feel gratitude. I always say, “Thank You, God, for everything.” Never do I ask, “Why only a penny?”
From the time the world was created, people have seen the earth and sky and all that God made. They can clearly see his invisible qualities-his eternal power and divine nature. So they have no excuse whatsoever for not knowing God. Romans 1:20 NLT
Next time you see a penny and pick it up, give thanks for the abundance in your life.

Skipping Christmas

 

I had the opportunity to hold a book discussion at my favorite Independent Living Center yesterday. I always enjoy visiting with the gals and sharing book discussions with them. I’ve been visiting this particular center for over a couple of years now and know these ladies quite well. I have shared many stories with them and they have laughed and cried with me through it all.

Yesterday we discussed the book, Skipping Christmas by John Grisham and although we all agreed the author probably wrote the book for lack of anything else to write at the time, rather than his normal legal thrillers, we thought the book was a humdinger in some chapters and depressing in others.

I asked this group of astute women “Have you ever thought about skipping Christmas?” They all said they would to a certain degree. One woman said, “I’m 84 years old and if I don’t want to conform to what others feel that I should be doing for Christmas, I’m not going to do it.” They all agreed that Christmas has become so commercial, so gimme, gimme and nothing like it used to be!

They shared with me some of their childhood holiday memories which gave me a warm fuzzy throughout my body.  It was mentioned that although it was still hyped as a gift-buying occasion by the retail industry, more emphasis was placed on the religious aspects of the holiday than now.

Why have we done this? Why have we taken the most precious reason for the season out of the season? Christmas has the most symbolic word meshed into it; CHRIST. The reason for this holiday is for the celebration of Christ’s birth. Let me remind you of some scriptures and prayers to reflect on this season:

“For a child will be born to us, a son will be given to us. And the government will rest on His shoulders; and His name will be called Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Eternal Father, Prince of Peace. There will be no end to the increase of His kingdom. To establish it and uphold it with justice and righteousness from then on and forevermore. The zeal of the Lord of hosts will accomplish this.” Isaiah 9:6

The Apostles’ Creed

I believe in God, the Father almighty,
creator of heaven and earth.

I believe in Jesus Christ, God’s only Son, our Lord,
who was conceived by the Holy Spirit,
born of the Virgin Mary,
suffered under Pontius Pilate,
was crucified, died, and was buried;
he descended to the dead.
On the third day he rose again;
he ascended into heaven,
he is seated at the right hand of the Father,
and he will come again to judge the living and the dead.

I believe in the Holy Spirit,
the holy Catholic Church,
the communion of saints,
the forgiveness of sins,
the resurrection of the body,
and the life everlasting. AMEN

If you believe that Christmas has lost its true meaning and you are a believer; study scripture; recite your prayers, meet with the heavenly father every morning, believe in the Divine; then help stop the commercial insanity. Skip The Commercial Christmas! Let’s join hands, bow our heads and pray that hearts would be turned this year and people would see that it’s not about all the presents, food and socializing. It’s about the birth of Christ; being with family and carrying out the warm fuzzy feeling all year round.

Ted-hose?

I started my day at a staff meeting then took off to a new doctor. Lots of blood work was ordered, an echocardiogram was ordered, referrals to an ENT and a Neurologist. I am thrilled that I have found a doctor that will follow through with all of the necessary tests and not just hand me medication. I want to know the results of everything I have. My legs are very swollen; now I have to wear support hose. Get this, I guess this is the funny part; I have to laugh about it…When I went to Wal-Mart to ask for the Ted-hose; they pointed in the opposite direction and said, “Over in the geriatric section.” My heart sank but oh well, if they work, they work. It may not be forever. From that doctor I went to get allergy shots and then the chiropractor. I think I’m busier now than I was working full time. It’s all good though because I’m going in the right direction.
I would like to share my heart for a minute: This was my prayer this morning, written in my journal and I will say it every morning and believe that it is done!
Bless my body Dear Lord! Shower every part of me with the strength that I need. Fill my every muscle, every tissue, every cell, every organ and every system of my body with good health. Bless me with wholeness of mind and body. Fill every part of me with divine light that will restore divine order in to every part of my body. Strengthen my body, today! Strengthen my arms, legs, hands and feet. Strengthen my heart and all the stuff that is connected to it. LET THE HEALING POWER OF YOUR STRENGTH FLOW THROUGH ME TODAY! Amen.
Today was a step in the right direction….

The Real First Half Day

Today is the first day that I begin working part time. I am excited but also apprehensive. I always worry about the financial aspect however, I know I am being called to do this. I have to get well. I will enter into His courts today with thanksgiving. I was reminded of that scripture and although I have so many health issues going on, I will continue to look up, give thanks to Him and bless His name. I will seek the right doctor, the right treatment and get well. Remember the part of Psalm 100:1-5…For the Lord is good; His loving-kindness is everlasting and His faithfulness to all generations. I am so thankful that I am surrounded by those who truly love me and care. Take time today to hug the ones you love, call or text the ones you miss or better yet, do the old fashioned thing and drop someone a note in the mail and tell them how much you appreciate them. Remember, no matter what is going on in your life, God’s loving-kindness is everlasting.