Sunday, August 21, 2016

Being Thankful and Learning to Dream

Over the course of the summer, I have been thinking about all the blessings in my life, they are many and I am so thankful for them. I know I have talked before of thankfulness but I have learned something new about it this summer.
  • I have an amazing family, my children, my grandchildren, and all the extended family. (Doesn't matter which were by birth and which I gained through marriage, I love them all!!)
  • My church family, they may have no idea just how important they are to me!!
  • I am blessed with a nice home, in a safe area, a big deck and good layout. 
  • I have a wonderful job that I love, plus I still have my small business- that makes me smile,  and together, the Lord uses them to pay my bills.
  • Transportation: I was blessed with a car that kept me getting where I needed to go. Then this summer I felt it was time to do something that I have never done on my own, I bought a new car, not brand new but I have a cute little new car (2013) with warranties still in place. It's nice to know I can feel secure to get into it and drive long distance without worry.
  • I have had the opportunity to take some wonderful trips.

I've always tried to be thankful, but not necessarily always been successful at it. I'm still not perfect at it, but I have gotten better at having a thankful heart. I understand better why the Word says in Ephesians 5:20 Giving thanks always for all things to God the Father in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ.

I have started seeing the blessings received better, by being thankful, it gives a me a greater appreciation for all the things that I have, and helps keep my focus to what I do have, rather than what I don't. It also allows me to be content in that. 

Ironically, I have recently begun to realize that in becoming more content in where I am in life, I am beginning to dream again. I have begun to take simple, practical steps as I have felt the Lord lead, and this helps bring my heart peace, and courage. The courage to face the future and be proactive about it. I had been continuing forward day to day, not fearful, but not really looking forward. 

Have you ever walked a path where you are in a crowded patch and the bushes really only let you see a step or two at a time, and then all of a sudden you break through the patch and the path becomes much more open, still a few branches, but now you can see quite a ways ahead? That's what has happened over the last few months.

I am now looking ahead to moving more than just a little forward and on into the complete clearing, seeing where the Lord is taking me. I give my heart and all that I have to use. I truly am thankful and more importantly TRUST HIM!! And I am beginning to really become excited about my future.

Monday, June 13, 2016

Rapids Suck. . . Thank You Lord for the Calms

As I said last time, I am thankful for the blessings in my life, they are many. What sucks is when a series of 'rapids' hits right in the middle of them.

It isn't easy to share from this side of my emotions, but I am sure that others go through this kind of thing, and it helps me to write about it.  I am also sure that the Lord motivated me to write it here for some reason. 

I have been truly blessed recently, I just got home from an amazing trip to Savannah, GA to see my niece graduate from college, and yes to see some sights... it was a trip that has left me longing to go again and really explore all the history of that area. Work has been good, and I have made some forward progress on some personal goals. I have had the joy of watching my oldest granddaughter dance in a wonderful ballet production.

And then the rapids... something in life triggers a series of emotions that you weren't planning on. Just when I think I am over the deep swings -- bam, one hits.

It has been one of those days, and when the rapids hit, they were a class 4.  It has been a long time since I had felt like I did -- heartache like it was yesterday that Glenn passed. Rapids are bumpy and they hurt, on the upside, they are often followed by calms.

And when the calm came, it came from an unexpected source. I was out in the yard pulling weeds- oh the joy, lol. Well, as I was in the front of my house, my elderly neighbor came out. He just recently had to put his wife, of nearly 67 years, into a Alzheimer's care facility. This sweet little old man, is heartsick and grieving the simple day to day absence of his love. As he was sharing with me about missing her, making daily visits to spend meals with her, how they met, and the Lord prompted me to share with him... You see, I get it, I understand his loneliness, and his fear of the future with out her, and the cruel beast Alzheimer's. (That's what took my mom.) 

We chatted for a bit, I shared a bit about my life the last 4 years, you see though we had spoken a few times, we hadn't really talked much. He was sorry that he hadn't met Glenn and didn't realize that Glenn was sick until he saw him in the wheelchair shortly before he died. We both shed some tears and some smiles as we talked. I gave him a hug, and he thanked me for the chat.

He was then off for lunch with his love, and I was back at my weeding... pondering again both the pain in my heart and the goodness of the Lord, He had used a little old man to help remind me that He is with me in my joy and my pain, this done as I spoke to him the scriptures that have been a strength to me, and I shared them with him to help my sweet neighbor gain some strength for his journey.

God is amazing and He is always present, and I am thankful for Him in my life. Yes, Rapids suck, but calms will always follow.

Wednesday, May 4, 2016

Blessings in the Journey

Three years have passed since I lost the love of my life. It's so long ago and yet only yesterday in my heart. This year, in the plans we had, we should have been going on our 35th anniversary, but instead, Glenn is celebrating 3 years in the full presence of the Lord and I am continuing on the journey that the Lord has for me. I can say this, I miss Glenn incredibly and think of him everyday, and wish that he were still here. I miss our conversations, our laughter, and time together... I could talk to him about anything and we would talk for hours. Ours was a blessed life...

That being stated, is not the focus for today's blog. I still deal with sadness at times, but the Joy of the Lord is my strength. Yes, I have joy, and the blessings of the Lord are the reason.

 What I wanted to talk about is the blessings in the journey that started on May 4, 2013, that day 3 years ago is when my life was forever changed. The Lord has been a present strength, each and every day. He has given me grace for the journey, where exactly I'm going, I'm honestly not sure, but I place my trust in Him.

Since Glenn passed my life has been an interesting journey, one that I am still trying to adjust too. Being alone after so many years is still very strange, but through God's guidance I continue to move forward. I have had to learn to do everything, earn the income, keep up on car maintenance, do the yard(definitely still battling that one), pay the bills and balance my budget-- the blessing, God has been so faithful in my finances. My bills have been paid each month, when I have needed something I have been able to take care of it, and I have even been able to have a little extra at times to do something special. 

The Lord has blessed me with 2 new grandchildren since that day, and the others have grown so much. I love being a grandma, though again, I'm not living it the way I had in my imagination years ago. I am adjusting and learning to be the best grandma that I can be. I am truly loved by my family, immediate, extended and my church family as well. I find that with them, the walk is easier.

The last couple years have, at times, felt like going down a river in an inner-tube. Some parts are easy and slow moving, and some are rough rapids, and sometimes I am in control and others I am simply along the ride... boy am I glad God has been keeping me upright. (I flipped in an inner-tube one time when I was younger and that's no fun.)

As I sit here right now writing this, I know that the last 3 years have been preparation time, exactly what for I'm not sure, but preparation for the future, none the less. I know this because the Lord tells me that in His word. I have a future and He knows what it is and if I continue to follow His lead, then I will find it. -- Yep, the God of my Strength, in Him will I trust. And as I continue to move forward, I will rejoice in the blessings of my life.

Be Blessed!!
PrairieMouse--- Mary