Hills and Valleys...haven't you heard it said that life comes in hills and valleys? Sometimes you're up, sometimes you're down. Sometimes things in life are exceptional, sometimes they're unbearable. If you're in a valley, just simply hold on, for soon you will be uplifted to the top of the next hill - sailing through once again.
That can certainly be true. However, one time I heard someone say that their life was more like two train tracks running along each other at the same time...always some good and almost always some bad mixed in with that.
It made perfect sense to me.
Blessings & Battlefields, both! The trick is to NOT land or stay on the Battlefields track alone. Many things in life are out of our control. Those aren't our fault, but no doubt, we must do our part to always be looking at the Blessings too, especially when we are stuck in a Battlefield.
Life can be beautiful if we can learn to balance both sides. Prayer & Faith help tremendously. Psalm 41:6 says God is our refuge and strength, an ever-present help in trouble. Sleeping, eating well, exercise, water (& coffee) can be huge benefits to living a life well lived. Believe it or not, some of us need to be told to sleep. :)
In those fantastic times when we land and stay only on the Blessings rail...
Well, ENJOY & Be GRATEFUL!
She's obviously Giving something away, and it appears to be COFFEE, which happens to be my blood type.
When I was younger I lived by the "You owe me" concept. Everyone owes me. The world owes me.
One day it occurred to me to actually do something special for someone else. Imagine! I started doing small things, picking up the house after someone, sending
a note of appreciation to a teacher, letting someone in my lane during congested traffic. As the years went on, my mind became "retrained" to focus on others' needs, and my own challenges seemed to greatly diminish. Each time I sat in front of my own challenge, the answer was to immediately focus on giving in some way, to someone else.
When our 13 year old dog passed away, our kids were devastated. A friend called and said, "You know there is only one CURE to that devastation...a new puppy!" As with our own lives, the only way to CURE a "You owe me" mentality, is to realize that we actually owe the world!
Our care and counseling pastor addressed us calling on all of us to make the world a better place. He said that even though he counsels people who are struggling daily, he would call on them too. Think outside of ourselves to make our part, of our world, a better place.
The key to moving beyond ourselves is to reach out to others, expecting
NOTHING in return. Sometimes we will be let down by family, friends, or co-workers. Sometimes we will even let ourselves down. Stand back up and give anyway. We will be amazed at the blessings we receive.
Not only will it change them, but us.
Change Lives.Give to Others.
**To Who & What could you give right now???
A hug, a smile, flowers, a meal, a call...**
To quote Charles Schulz, the creator of the comic strip Peanuts:
"Christmas is doing a little something extra
While reading my devotional from the YouVersion App (Which you can download here from this button) -
- I came across this little, thought-provoking nugget: "Gift giving is honorable, generous, and says, "You were on my mind."
We resemble our Heavenly Father when we offer gifts to others. It's normal and expected to give presents at Christmastime, but what if we were generous all the time? What if we gave to a friend in April just because? What if we contributed to a friend or cause in July? If we made giving a regular part of our lives, we might not have to focus so much on doing it during one month of the year."
As Charles Schulz says: "Christmas is doing a little something extra
Yes, yes it is, among many other things! Oh, how we love to shop, create and deliver our gifts. Oh, how we love to receive our presents.
Oh, how we love to celebrate and EAT with family and friends. Oh, how we love the special time of year. But, let us always remember that Giving has NO Season. Doesn't matter the size, shape, experience,
or cost of our gift,
there is always a REASON to give.
Think beyond ourselves.
Be a Blessing.
Change Lives. Give to Others.
'Tis the season of Thanksgiving - Yes, the time to Count Our Blessings!
While we are doing that, let’s get a little selfish and thank ourselves. Wait, What?
Let me rephrase – let’s be grateful to simply
Be Ourselves AND Be Our Best Selves.
You are a gift. You’ve been given breath, time, purpose and opportunity each day to go out into life and give it your best. You don’t have to push yourself so hard you faint, but you also don’t have to remain stagnant, turning to mush.
What if one of the biggest blessings in life is to accept and love yourself for who you are, while at the same time challenging ourselves to do and Be Our Best Self? I believe we have an innate sense, not to be perfect, but to do and be good… a sense to improve and go after all our potential. I think our inner self knows it needs to continue to move forward in life, even if that comes in small, basic doses.
Whatever it means to you to Be Your Best You,
I bet it includes serving others in the end.
Now, THAT is something to Give Thanks for!
This quote from Joanna Gaines shook
me so much, I’d like to share it with you:
I want to leave you with an excerpt on freedom from this season’s Magnolia Journal:
“…I’m not going to pretend it’s not scary to dig in, to fight for something within yourself that you may not even be able to name. But that’s nothing compared to the aftermath should we choose to pretend that it’s safer to stay the same. Every day, every hour—we get to decide who we are meant to be. The breath in our lungs is the official declaration that we’ve got more growing to do. I believe there’s a whole world of untapped potential buried within me, hoping that I’ll be brave enough to unearth it. I also believe there’s a whole world of untapped potential within you. And it’s hoping, waiting to see if you’re willing to set it free.”
Be the Best You & Enjoy All Your Blessings,
The steadfast love of the Lord never ceases;
his mercies never come to an end; they are new every morning; great is your faithfulness. Lamentations 3:22-23