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.  

Are You Present?

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I remember my father telling me he was learning everything on his way out. In other words, the older he gets, the wiser he becomes.  I’m noticing this also, and recently I’ve become aware of what it truly means to be present in the moment. It’s one thing to be present in the moment (in the flesh), yet something completely different to be present in the moment (in the Spirit of God). Our carnal eyes aren’t capable of beholding what the eyes of our Creator sees, nor can our carnal mind process what’s going on around us. To be present is to be engaged spiritually. After all, we’re spiritual beings, right? 

To be present in the moment is to be present in His presence. I wonder if I’ve been sleep walking most of my life. You know, going through the motions thinking I’m living in the moment. I want to be awake to life and benefit from the enlightenment every breath offers. I want to be awake and aware of God’s presence with every move I make and every step I take. To hear the birds sing in the flesh is one thing, but that same bird singing when awake and aware of God’s presence will make one want to sing, too!  

Oh, to behold God’s creation with spiritual eyes! Oh, to be engaged with the people we run into and have conversations with throughout the day! Oh, to realize our spiritual role in our child’s life! Life isn’t a series of mere happenstances, but spiritually synchronized experiences divinely designed just for us. Knowing this adds excitement to what’s in store for us today. Instead of going through the motions, be engaged, be enlightened, and be present in the present moment. Be present in His presence. 

Stop Blocking

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My devotional reading this morning had me laughing at myself. It spoke of how we get in God’s way. I immediately thought of my sons. As mothers, I’m sure we can all relate to this. As the natural nurturers we are, we often cross that thin line between motherly guidance and God’s plan. We do our best to shield, protect, and instruct our children forgetting they have some bumps on their journey that have been strategically planned just for them. They have some tears to cry, and they’ll have some challenging situations to endure. These things are designed to draw them closer to their Heavenly Father and strengthen them, but a mother will block the battle, the challenges, and the trials and tribulations thinking she’s doing what’s best for her child. 

I have to continually remind myself that my sons belong to God and He loves them way more than my mind can imagine. Not only do I have to trust the training I gave my sons, but I have to trust God with my child’s life. All the seasoned mothers, with adult children, have walked this path before and some are probably still learning to stay in their lane and to stop blocking. Yes, it’s much easier said than done, and I cross that thin line more than I care to admit. God gently whispers to remind me that He knows what’s best to prepare His children for the life He has for them. 

As Secondborn prepares for college and is DJing at parties in places I’ve never heard of, I’m reminded to stop blocking. Sigh…blocking is so much easier and makes me feel better, but I don’t want to get in God’s way or block the blessings divinely designed for my children. After all, I want what’s best for my sons and only God knows what’s best. Have a marvelous day and stop blocking!

God Matters

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This morning I was awakened by the news alert alarm on my cell phone. There was a report of a shooting in Ft. Myers, Florida. Yes, another shooting. I really didn’t want to begin my day with bad news or with more talk about Black Lives, Blues Lives, White Lives, and All Lives mattering. I believe I’ve reached my limit. Instead of getting frustrated, I told myself that God matters. Nothing else is more important to me right now than keeping my mind on my Creator to keep my peace of mind. If I didn’t, I’d be somewhere in a corner, in a fetal position and consumed with depression because of the state of our nation. I’m not minimizing what’s going on in our country, but I’m fully aware that what’s going on is way bigger than I am and bigger than all the small organizations attempting to make a difference. 

God matters and until we acknowledge Him and realize He is in control, nothing will change. 
Our country consist of all God’s children who haven’t learned to live together. In my thoughts this morning, I searched my own heart, thoughts, and actions then I told myself again, God matters. I then thought about my own issues with my sons, my personal life, my nieces and their future, my parents, and other loved ones who came to mind. My final thought – God matters. I don’t have any power to change anything except myself, so for me and my house – God matters. Staying focused on what REALLY matters put a smile on my face and joy in my heart in spite of what’s going on in the world. What truly matters is what’s going on in my heart - God matters.