A Good Day

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I awoke this morning full of smiles and excitement like a child waking up on Christmas Day. What a good place to be mentally and spiritually. The words below were my first thoughts this morning and I quickly jotted them down to share with you. I pray we all stay in our place of peace today and not stray from our Keeper in our thoughts and ways. May we unwrap this gift of day with joy and expectations of only good – regardless of what’s in store for us.

My morning thought…

Because I awoke with the ability to breathe, I perceive today to be a good day. May your perfect will be done in me. Empty me of my Self and allow Holy Spirit, which dwells within, to have divine way in me, with me, and through me. You are in control. Guide me, lead me, have your way. Mold me, shape me throughout this day.  Allow me to see only good in all you do. On my job, in my family, with friends and passersby. May I rejoice and praise knowing it’s all for my good and you’ll have your way regardless of what I say or what I try. We are one as I abide in you and keep my mind on you. My place of peace is with you and there is where I want to stay. Again, because I awoke with the ability to breathe, I perceive today to be a good day.

The Secret Place

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I used to wake up every morning and make a point to spend time with God. I’d grab my Bible, read a few verses, pray, and start my day. I realized it’s not about starting my day with God in prayer, but it’s about living my day with God in prayer. Please don’t get me wrong. I’m not saying I don’t start my day with God. I definitely acknowledge my Helper, my Keeper, my Light, but If I awake late or something happens to prevent me from reading my Bible, it’s okay because I now know having a constant awareness of God throughout the day is more helpful to me than making sure I punch the clock with Him every morning. Now, when I awake, I rest still in my bed for a while just allowing God to speak to me. 

Another thing, I realized is that I talk too much! I’m learning to shut-up and listen to my Father speak. This quietness, the stillness, the oneness leads me to that secret place where no one can interrupt, disturb, or shake… because it’s deep within me. The secret place is where He shares His wisdom, His light, His love…Himself. The secret place is where I grow without effort, where my talents stretch without thought, where I’m strengthened without tribulation, and where His love transcends without me getting in the way. 

Yes, reaching the secret place takes practice, but the more I practice, the easier it is to reach and remain there – throughout the day, not just in the morning. Just thinking about the secret place gives me peace. That’s just how powerful it is. Have you found the secret place? If not, be still…

Low Air Pressure

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Yesterday I noticed my tire pressure light was on. I really didn’t feel like stopping to put air in my tires. I usually just drive up to a tire shop and ask them to check my air pressure. It was Sunday, so those shops were closed, but when I stopped for gas, I noticed an air pump. There was one guy ahead of me and I wondered if he would offer to help me. Yes, I was being lazy – I did NOT feel like doing it. He made eye contact with me. I smiled, he smiled back and got back in his car and drove off. A car pulled up behind me as I pulled up to the air hose. A gentleman was at the wheel, and again I wondered if he would offer to help. He didn’t budge from his car. Well, I got my lazy butt out of the car and put air in my tires. When I finished, I felt a small sense of accomplishment because I found a little motivation within me to do it myself. 

Of course, my brain spiritualized my low-pressure tires. I could have kept driving with the low-pressure light and ended up on a flat, but instead, I restored the air in my tires. It’s like waiting for someone to encourage you. Sometimes we feel spiritually low, deflated, or maybe a little blah. We can wait for someone to say an encouraging word or we can encourage ourselves. People don’t always come through when we need them, so in this life, we better learn to do some things on our own and that includes lifting ourselves, praying for ourselves, affirming ourselves, and encouraging ourselves. We may not feel like it, but we’re only hurting ourselves if we don’t. We only prolong our peace and joy when we wait for someone else to share the Light when the Light is already within us. Check your pressure!

Tick Tock

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Over the weekend, I helped a friend prepare for a workshop she was giving. After set-up was complete, we had a few minutes to spare. She reviewed her notes and I sat and read. It was extremely quiet in the room. It was so quiet, I heard the clock on the wall ticking. Tick tock, tick tock. I looked at the clock and watched the red second hand move from second to second. As I watched the clock, I realized I was sitting and watching time pass by. I actually shivered at the thought of me literally watching time go by. The second hand didn’t stop…it never stops! Time is always moving and when time is lost we never get it back. We ask, “What happened to the time?” It passed! It’s gone! Time is always passing. It’s passing right now. 

We can look at our children and realize time is passing by. We look at our aging parents and realize time is passing by. It’s good to be conscious of time, but it’s better to be conscious of life. We miss life by watching time. We miss living by focusing on aging. The passing of time is inevitable, so we might as well make the most of it by living life to the fullest day by day, minute by minute, second by second. With that being said, I’m going to end this meditation and be a good steward of the time I’ve been blessed with. I’m usually running late for work. Why? Because time is passing by! Tick tock…tick tock…

Miss America

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It’s been many years since I’ve watched the Miss America pageant, but I watched it last night. My father wouldn’t allow me to watch it as a young girl because he knew I’d be comparing myself to all those beautiful women and would probably find everything wrong with my body. When I joined the military, I remember the first time I had the liberty to watch a Miss America pageant. Daddy was right. I remember putting on my one piece bathing suit, a pair of heels, and prancing around my apartment like I was in the pageant. Funny, huh? 

Yes, I remember comparing myself to the contestants. I didn’t do any comparing last night, but I thought about how difficult it must be for our young girls to feel good about themselves with all the competition from makeup, weave, air-brushing, and filtering for photographs, and peer pressure. Even Facebook has tools to allow you to look almost any way you desire. We can tell a young girl that she is beautifully and wonderfully made all day, but until she believes it herself, she will always deal with body issues. Grown women have issues! 

Also while watching, I remembered when I had the body of those young girls. No more perky breasts!  Hmmm…is that comparing? All women are graced with a season of perky breasts, but that season will pass. And just because we age doesn’t mean we have to let our body go. We are still beautifully and wonderfully made - regardless of our age. We are daughters of a King! We are perfect in his sight and to mumble and complain about our body grieves the Spirit of God. All we can do is our part to maintain our temple and stay in shape. Everything else…well, we have to learn to live in the skin we’re in and be our own Miss America!

Love Your Work?

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While resting in bed this morning, I thanked the people way back in the 1800’s who decided to make Labor Day a holiday. It felt sooo good to snuggle with my pillow and read with absolutely nowhere to go and no place to be. This is rare for me, and although I’ll do some work with my publishing company later, it doesn’t feel like work because it’s what I enjoy doing.  If I could wake up every day and do one thing for work, it would be to write. What about you? 

Steve Jobs said it best. “Your work is going to fill a large part of your life, and the only way to be truly satisfied is to do what you believe is great work. And the only way to do great work is to love what you do.” I can’t imagine waking up every morning for the rest of my life and doing something I don’t enjoy. This is probably why so many people are miserable – they aren’t doing what they enjoy or aren’t with someone they enjoy. I know, I’ve been there. 

Life is wonderful because it offers the opportunity to change and make choices. It takes courage to step out and try new things. It also takes faith to believe in ourselves and trust all our gifts, talents, and abilities our Heavenly Father equipped us with. I remind my sons all the time that they have one life – use it or lose it. Time goes by too fast to not enjoy what you’re doing. Now, if I can get a couple of horses and a log cabin home on a couple of acres, I’m set, but for right now, I’m happy with my writing. Happy Labor Day!

My Life

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I spoke with a woman over the phone who was interested in publishing her poetry. We talked for a while and I asked her to tell me a little about herself. She said she had never been married and had no children. We met over the weekend and our time together was a blessing to me.  Not having a husband or children opened this woman’s life up to challenges and struggles I couldn’t identify with. She was an older woman and said she didn’t want to be an “old maid,” but after living alone for so many years, she accepted it and she’s fine with her life. I shared a little of my past married life with children and at the end of our meeting we laughed and shared gratefulness for our own life. 

God knows what’s best for us. He knows specifically what people to allow in our life and the level of necessary adversities to occur. It’s easy to compare our life with someone else’s, but the grass is never greener on the other side.  Life is a game and we have to play the hand we were dealt and not be trumped by looking at someone else’s hand. In spite of everything I’ve gone through, the good and the seemingly not-so-good, I’m thankful for my life and I LOVE it! Things aren’t perfect, but I’m at peace. No matter what hand we’ve been dealt, someone is wishing they could be in our shoes. Don’t believe it? Turn on the news. 

As I look over my life, I’m so doggone thankful for all I’ve been through and I’m even more grateful that my Savior has been with me every step of the way. He’s the Keeper of my mind, body, and soul. He’s the Keeper of my life…He is my life and I’m just fine!

Nothing But Love

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I recently saw this comic strip, and it made me think of Secondborn and his sudden lack of motivation to accept adulthood knocking at his door. This morning, as I listened to him snore, I thought of everything I’ve suggested to him that his complacent attitude ignores. His phrase right now is, “I’m chilling.” Every thought I had of Secondborn took me to another level of anger, but as I prayed, those feelings of anger slowly dissipated and emotions of love slowly crept in for my seemingly lackadaisical son. 

You never know what goes on in a person’s mind, and I’m grateful for being reminded that this season of transition for him may not be easy. Whatever age your child may be, they are experiencing some type of change and they need someone in their corner to love them through their season of the unknown. Everyone doesn’t react or respond the same. Everyone doesn’t think the same. We’re all wired differently. 

My job with my child is to gently guide, love, and pray. I can’t change the journey set before him, and there is absolutely nothing I can do to manipulate what God has planned for his life. Furthermore, what’s the big sense of urgency with me? Maybe I got a taste of the empty nest, and he’s killing my vibe. I don’t know what it is, but I need to get out of my feelings and into my faith. My words will stick with him forever, so I better make those words positive, encouraging and edifying. Yes, Secondborn can take me “there” and drive me crazy, but at the end of the day, I have nothing but love for him and a little patience, too.