Why is it that some days getting caught in the rain prompts a giggle, while other days the rain triggers tears? I’m learning it is all about attitude. When life is full of sunshine and tulips it is easier to experience joy and share it with others. But when the storms come, either literally or figuratively, you don’t have to lose your sparkle. As I set my focus on God I can view life through His eyes and I’m finding that whatever the weather I can still shine.
I am afraid of bugs…but I hope ladybugs and butterflies find
my yard a great place to spend their time.
I am afraid of heights…but I hope to ride in a hot-air
balloon one day.
I am afraid of the dark…but I hope the power will go out sometimes,
so I can have an excuse to surround myself with candlelight.
I am afraid when people meet me they may think I am snobby…but
I hope when I am being quiet and awkward they realize I am just feeling bashful.
I am afraid I will never be free of the unwelcome pounds which
have attached themselves to my body…but I hope when summer arrives I will be
able to wear a yellow polka-dot tankini with some measure of confidence.
I am afraid I will never find my husband…but I hope to one
day walk down an aisle, lined with breath-taking flowers, towards the man of my
I am afraid I will never own a house...but I hope that
someday I can paint the walls of my home any color I wish, including a
purple front door.
Most of all, I am afraid that I will let my fears get in the
way of me becoming the person I was designed to be.But I have hope that God will not leave me as I am.
Have you ever stopped to think…Fear and Hope are siblings?Their parents are the Unseen and Unknowable Future. Yet Hope chooses to focus on the possibility the
future will be bright, while Fear focuses on the possibility that the future will be
gloomy.Even though I am not a fortune teller, there
is one thing I can guarantee: You future will have both. There will be times of pain, sorrow and strife…as
well as, times of joy, happiness and peace.But how dark the gloomy times get will be greatly determined by whether
you view your future as Hope does, or as Fear does.
My desire is that I can cut loose Fear, who is too often tethered
to me like a toddler pestering and clinging to his overwhelmed mother.I want to become better friends, best
friends, with Hope.She’s the kind of
friend who will hold your hand even when you are at your worst. A friend I can always turn to, and count on for
a kind word and fresh perspective.A
friend who sparkles with the Light that comes from being steeped in God’s promises. Don't you want to have a friend like that? I know I do! Wouldn't you like to be a friend like that? I know I would!
Hugs & Smooches, Lisa Ann
“For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the LORD, “plans to prosper you and
not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.” Jeremiah 29:11 NIV
This post was inspired by the word "Afraid"
suggested by Lisa-Jo Baker aka The Gypsy Mama
My birthday was a couple of days ago, pointing out not only the fact that I am another year older, but also that it has been a year since I last wrote on my blog…not for lack of time, or ideas, or desire.Last year’s birthday was a wakeup call for me, and not exactly the kind that kicks you into high gear propelling you forward toward a new and better you, or the kind that empowers you with the resolve needed to climb your way out of the hole you’ve been trapped in, leading you to fresh air and a new perspective on life.This “wakeup call” left me barely breathing for awhile, and when I came to, I found myself bleeding, bruised, dizzy, stumbling and then, after a bit of time had passed, grasping at the wind, desperately searching for something to grab onto so I could steady myself.I was certain I had been struck on the side of the head with a baseball bat gripped by a World Series champion swinging for the fences.I was minding my own business, living my life and WHAM!First, a shock of breathtaking pain and then the thoughts, “Where the hell did that come from?” followed by, “I didn’t do anything to deserve that!”That blow left me angry because I wasn’t even at the ballpark when it happened so “it shouldn’t have happened to me.”Or so I thought…
Time has passed and the passing of time often casts new light on your panorama making the view somehow different…possibly because some corners have never had light touch them before.I am not one who resists taking a long hard look at herself, but even the most introspective of people can miss seeing truth when we fail to point light in the right direction.And not just any light…but the Light.The Light that only illuminates truth.The Light that makes the way clear.The Light that shines in the dark places to show you that you are not alone.The Light that reflects the strength you have inside when you are certain you have none. The Light that exposes you to the joy you hoped existed, but feared was just a figment of your imagination.
Once I allowed the Light into some of my dark corners I had to accept that in reality I was in the ballpark when I was hit with the whammy. I just hadn’t paused long enough to notice the change of venue…or maybe I just made of point of putting on some dark lenses when the truth dared to shine in my direction.If I had seen what was coming would I have been able to alter my script and write myself a few chapters with happier, more fulfilling endings?Maybe…or maybe not.And that is not the point. The point is a change of perspective is always the key to finding joy in spite of the runs scored against you.
I’m another year older and I really am wiser.I am waking up each day with the desire to take a stock check of my life in all the nooks and crannies in light of the Light.Maybe I wouldn’t have needed the Light so much if I hadn’t ended up in the ballpark trying to dodge fast balls and swinging bats.And wouldn’t that have led to a greater loss, and a more tragic heartbreaking ending???I think so…but that is just my perspective.
Inhale. Exhale. Repeat.That takes all of the strength I have in my body right now.
Deep breath...forge ahead. I haven’t blogged for a few weeks now.It is not because I haven’t had the time or haven’t had anything to say.It is because I have been having a great big pity party for myself the last several weeks and I don’t want to invite anyone else to the party… ‘cause who wants to go to a party where no one is having any fun.
Just breathe. But breathing hurts right now and I am afraid if I breathe too deeply it may break loose the dam holding back the tears that I am a fighting to keep control of…only releasing a few at a time.In fact I woke up this morning with my eyes so incredibly swollen. My eyelids are so puffy they look as though they were injected with saline. Before today the only time my eyes ever have looked like this was after a violent cry…but not this time.No, I think this time my eyes swelled up with the tears I have been holding back, the tears I fear I will drown in and will keep me from ever finding my breath again.
Be thankful for each breath…that what I would like to do. Because turning 42 next week might mean the end of my dream of giving birth to a child, but there are still so many other wishes that have the chance of coming true…and so many reasons to have hope.
“Breathe in His Word." That is all the advice, all the words of wisdom, all the encouragement I can handle right now.Because right now hope eludes me.There are no words that can comfort me…only time and tears and God will heal my broken heart.So I will just keep breathing and trusting that the future will one day look brighter…and I won’t have to think about breathing.
Tomorrow… Inhale. Exhale. Breathing easier.
***This 5 minute Friday post was inspired by the phrase "Deep Breath".
The first thing that comes to mind when I ponder the word distance is loss.I think of the distance between me and the people I love who are no longer with me.My Grandma Laila, who died when I was nineteen, was the person who taught me what unconditional love looks like.I never disappointed her.She always looked at me with her love goggles on, which filtered out any imperfections.My Aunt Diane, who was a spiritual mother to me, died of ALS almost eight years ago.She understood me in a way that no one else ever has.I often long to sit with her and talk for hours like we use to do, so I can glean her words of wisdom, joy and hope.
I also think of the distance between me and long sought after dreams…dreams of a husband and children and a home to call my own.Those dreams seem so far away.Sometimes I feel like I have caught a glimpse of them but then, for some reason or another, those hopes are dashed, and like a mirage in the desert the dreams disappear from view again.
Then I consider the idea of “going the distance”, which just sounds like a lot of work.It makes me think of the trials I have faced and will face in the future.And if I am quite honest I can say that rarely has going the distance felt worth it…it has just felt like I am being stretched and pulled in uncomfortable directions.The stretching and pulling has resulted in growing, but I always wish that growth could come in an easier fashion.But that is just not reality, growth always requires struggle.
So can distance ever be a good thing?Oh, yes it can! And in the most important way possible!
There can be security in distance when the distance is between you and something repulsive or menacing.
“He has removed our sins as far from us as the east is from the west.”Psalm 103:12
Now that is a distance for which I am grateful!Jesus loves us so much that He willing accepted a brutal death on a cross.His sacrifice so far removed our sins from us that they can no longer be seen, and therefore they can no longer be counted against us. Because Jesus gave up his life for us, we can rest in the knowledge our overwhelming debt for the sins we have each perpetrated has been absolved the moment we choose to accept His love and decide to have a relationship with Him. Once we accept His love, Jesus puts on His very own pair of love goggles, obscuring our flaws and failings so there is no longer any distance between us and the promises of Heaven.
Hugs & Smooches,
***This 5 minute Friday post was inspired by the word Distance and honestly I am sure I wrote for more than five minutes but I was on a roll and I did resist the urge to edit...for the most part. ;)
If you met me you would probably find me covered in both fur and sparkles…which doesn’t sound so strange if you are aware that I am both a dog trainer and a jewelry junkie, formally known as an independent jewelry consultant for Touchstone Crystal.
The fur to sparkle ratio is directly related to whether I am hanging out with four-legged friends or two-legged friends.To be quite honest, the majority of my two-legged friends would be quite shocked to see me in my “dog time” attire, for I don’t let them see me without makeup applied, hair done, clothes pressed and shoes shined.You see, I am confident that dogs will love me know matter what I look like.I wish I trusted “the world” would love me even when I am sans lip gloss & mascara, having a bad hair day and smudged with muddy puppy paws.Can you relate?
Hugs & Smooches,
***This 5 minute Friday post was inspired by the phrase: "If you met me..."