Philippians 4-8

Philippians 4-8

Tuesday, February 18, 2014

*Grace...Gratitude...Joy*

Getting back to my 1000 Gifts Journaling Adventure for this year, I wanted to share as I went along, so here goes!

Reasons to give great praise and thank God for all of His goodness:

79. Dancing and singing with Lovey Dovey in the kitchen
80.  My husband waking up and hugging me at 5:00 a.m.
81.  Blowing bubbles in the summer breeze.
82.  Picnics at the lake
83.  Brothers enjoying a great book together


 Snapped these two goodies today while they weren't really looking.

Monday, February 17, 2014

Love Is...

This is a re-post from last year's Valentine's post.  It is one of my favorites and worth a second glance :-)

I have decided to make a St. Valentine's Day post a few days early.  Today is the 15th anniversary of my Mom's death and the day before Ash Wednesday.  Each year this time of year reminds me of the important things I have been blessed with in my life.  I am now at a point in life where I can think of my Mom today with more thoughts of happiness, thankfulness and joy than of sadness.  I am a better person {and mother} because of her and for that I am thankful. 

I have decided that this month I am going to memorize 1 Corinthians 13:1-13.

I've always loved that particular scripture and it was part of our wedding too.


This is why I like it best...



Love is patient and kind; 







love is not jealous or boastful;

 











 it is not arrogant or rude.  










Love does not insist on its own way;
it is not irritable or resentful; 












 it does not rejoice at wrong, but rejoices in the right. 








Love bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things.
 








































  Love never ends.

 

Thursday, February 13, 2014

Celebrating My Mom

Yesterday was the 16th anniversary of my Mom's death.
It’s hard to believe that it’s been 16 years since my Mom went to be with Jesus. I’ve decided to celebrate her life instead of mourning my loss. She was an incredibly strong woman who persevered during many adversities in her life. The more I look at myself, the more I see her traits, the good and not so good within me. She was a kind, sweet caring person who always put people before things, could bake the most delicious homemade bread from scratch and read a 300 page novel in less than two days! 

 Some of the sweetest memories I have of her are baking in the kitchen together when I was little, the many, many long walks we took down Main Street growing up {mom didn’t drive}, her dressing up taking me trick or treating as a child, and walking me to school and attending Mass each day during elementary school {doubly blessed if it were a feast day as I attended Catholic school}.

She was kind, loved God and all the people who she was blessed to know and although her life was not always the way it appeared to me and there were many times of struggle, she always placed her faith in God to carry her through and He did.
Thank you SO much, Mom, for helping to make me the person I am today!

Friday, February 7, 2014

{this moment}

digging out from the major blast of snow two days ago

Friday, January 31, 2014

Wednesday, January 29, 2014

Rejoice and Be Glad

Do you find yourself a bit let down after the excitement and anticipation of Christmas is over?

 Although we celebrate til the very last day possible {usually being Epiphany, but, this year our pastor explained to us that Christmas does indeed extend to the Baptism of our Lord}, I still find myself let down after it is over.

To me it is similar to giving birth...although I was thrilled to be holding that new, sweet little bundle of joy in my arms and to love him first hand, I somehow always found myself missing being pregnant.  Yes...I know, you are saying that I am weird, but, I truly did.  I loved being pregnant...each and every minute of it.  I was very blessed and had three amazingly uneventful healthy pregnancies and absolutely *loved* carrying and feeling those little people inside of me!

In the midst of an extremely frigid winter, let down can truly get you down!  We've had arctic, bone chilling cold here for weeks and it does not look like things are going to be changing much tomorrow!  I need something...

anything....

to look forward to.

I need to find my inner happy.  It has seemed to be a bit lost right now.

I find myself running rushing {even though we are inside due to cold} all day long.  There seems to be a constant race, inside my mind, to get things done.  Things, that ugly word that sometimes takes over our lives and makes us run like a chicken with its head cut off and away from what we should be focusing on!

So...I am on a quest to find more JOY and less chaos.

According to Mirriam-Webster, joy is defined as

JOY (noun) 
: a feeling of great happiness
: a source or cause of great happiness : something or someone that gives joy to someone

It's origin comes from  from Latin gaudia, plural of gaudium, from gaudēre to rejoice; probably akin to Greek gēthein to rejoice.

Intriguingly enough the antonyms of joy are:
 calamity, ill-being, misery, sadness, unhappiness, wretchedness


That is how things feel lately...sad, ill and unhappy, like something is really missing or slightly askew.



This is the second year in a row I have felt this way after Christmas is over and January rolls around.  There is so much that needs to be done, and I just am not feeling the love for it like usual.


I recently purchased Ann Voskamp's  One Thousand Gifts Devotional.  I have read her One Thousand Gits and really enjoyed and even began a thankful journal of my own last summer, but, in the busyness of life it was set aside never to be returned to.  I only got to #42 in my journal.  This devotional is AMAZING!  I cannot say enough wonderful things about it.  I think I am loving it even better than the book.  It has 60 devotions to reflect on and I am running through them craving more.  It is feeding my heart and soul and really making me feel rejuvenated.






I even picked up my thankful journal.  The one with the meager 42 entries in it.  I read it over and it made me smile HUGE.  All of the memories from those 42 events just re-filled my heart and soul as well and made me realize how very blessed I am and it also makes me realize that I need to always thank God for the little things in life.  I am pretty good about being thankful and I know I am blessed, but, in all of the chaos in our day to day living, sometimes all of that goodness gets lost.

Can you relate?

I am at a point in my life where I am thinking about things like how my oldest son is only six years away from going to college and that makes me sad that he is growing up SO fast.  I know it is good and wonderful and he is a wonderful boy, but, for this momma, time still passes much too quickly.  As I find myself rushing from task to task I am missing some of the graces that God is showering me with.  I don't want to miss anything and especially because I feel the need to rush on to the next thing {there's that word again}.

I want to be intentional, in the here and now as much as I can.

So instead of hearing all of the noise and chaos while I make dinner {my sons seem to rev up around 4:30 p.m.}, I am intentionally choosing to hear the laughter and watch what they are doing and seeing why it is so funny.  It makes me smile HUGE too!

All that we have is a gift from God.  It is our choice whether we accept the gift graciously and with a thankful heart or if we are like a little child rushing off to the next pretty thing that gets our attention.

There is always more grace, more joy in Him.  God wants us to be happy, thankful and to rejoice in His goodness.  The more we rejoice and are thankful, the more we see how good and wonderful He is.  The solution for chaos and anxiety is loving and thanking God for all of His many blessings that we have in our lives.  Without Him we are nothing.

I have seen many bloggers chose a word for the new year that they feel will encourage or enlighten them.  If I had to chose a word it would be:

Rejoice  (verb)
to feel or show great joy or delight.

I am choosing to rejoice and be glad in all things through Him {psalm 118}. 
I have only been practicing this and keeping my journal for a few days now, but, can tell you that between thankfulness, prayer and adoration I can feel a change in those let down post Christmas feelings.

The days are getting longer.
The sun is getting brighter and the weather will warm up.
I see gorgeous bluejays and cardinals in the snow and rejoice in the gift of their presence and know that their many friends who flew south a few months back will be back soon.

I choose JOY!
 



Tuesday, January 28, 2014

Revisting My First Post...

WOW!  I cannot believe that I have been blogging for almost five years now.  I just took a few moments to look over the first year of posts and came across this one, which was my first post.

This serves as a gentle reminder for me...

He will handle things.......in His timing....

To: YOU

Date: TODAY

From: GOD

Subject: YOURSELF

Reference: LIFE

This is God. Today I will be handling All of your problems for you. I do Not need your help. 
So, have a nice day.

I love you.

P.S. And, remember...

If life happens to deliver a situation to you that you cannot handle, do Not attempt to resolve it yourself! Kindly put it in the SFGTD (something for God to do) box. I will get to it in MY TIME. All situations will be resolved, but in My time, not yours.

Once the matter is placed into the box, do not hold onto it by worrying about it. Instead, focus on all the wonderful things that are present in your life now.