Tag Archives: joy

Before You Know It

Happy Monday, folks. Well, I’ve had my coffee and have succombed to the morning, so it’s happy, but more so because I say it is. Plus, I woke up. That’s a bonus.

It seems my emotional state has been heightened lately. Maybe that is partly from not living on our own yet. I love his folks but not having your privacy takes it toll. And maybe part of that is being away from my kids. Maybe not being away, but realizing that they are all adults now. They don’t need me like they use to. They still need me, of course, but now it’s different.

I became a grandma in September 2012 and again in April 2013. Seeing my boys with their own children…that’s just a crazy feeling. People tout how great it is being a grandparent – and yes, it is all that but there’s another level that is often overlooked: seeing your child become a parent. The look in their eyes when they hold their child. The concern in their voice. It brings back memories of when I held them. And now, look at them, holding their own.

Missouri-139-v2 Mom use to tell me that you always worry about your kids, no matter how old. Man. Was she right. I pray for their marriages, for their kids, for their health, for their jobs, for the ability to make good decisions and cling to their faith. It’s never ending. And yes, Mom was right. The worry gets bigger as they get bigger. It’s no longer just a matter o worrying if they will scrap a knee or get their feelings hurt at school…

We also hear oh so often how “I’m turning into my mother/father”. Well, I definitely feel like I’m looking through different lenses. It’s like I’ve crossed another threshhold. Like when I watch my kids with their kids; I think to myself “So this is how my Mom felt.” It makes me miss her. My older siblings do not know how blessed they were. I was 33 when Mom passed. (And in that instant, I turned 5 again.) She didn’t get to see my grandkids. She didn’t get to meet Dave. She didn’t get to see me overcome my addictions and really make something of my life. I believe she is still around me. Albeit not the same, I find comfort in believing that she visits and knows how happy I am and how far I’ve come. I believe she sees that all the prayers she prayed for me, worked.

I guess what has gotten to me is, the realization that time doesn’t stop. Some threshholds are bigger than others… I can recall hollering for my mom to watch me do flips on the clothesline pole. I remember her opening the back door and hollering for me when I didn’t want come in from the rain. I remember her disappointment when I was caught playing sick at school and she had to come pick me up, when I stayed out past my curfew, when I dropped out of school. I remember her walking into the hospital room the day I gave birth to my first child. I remember her in her wheelchair, being there for my first college graduation. I remember that call at 4am that she had a stroke…I remember seeing her. It didn’t look like her. I remember her hospital bed in the living room and sitting on her bedside, crying when she asked what I wanted after she passed. Some day that will be me…I can only hope that I have a slue of grandkids, a book of stories, and all the aches and pains that come with age. And I can only hope that I’ve instilled good values in my children who will pass them on to their children, who will ultimately carry it forward after I’m gone. Maybe that’s why I’m so into photography. It’s a way you can stop time. Capture a memory, share it and relive it.

So, what’s the moral of this post? Heck. I don’t know. The old cliches just don’t seem to cut it anymore: ‘Live life to the fullest’, ‘When life gives you lemons, make lemonade’, ‘Give it all you’ve got’…when we reach the end, who knows what happens next. All I know is, we will all makes mistakes. We will all have some type of regret. We will all fall down and hopefully, we will all get up better than we were before. We will all have good memories and yes, they will be sprinkled with some bad. I guess the moral is, own it. It’s yours. Take photos. Document your life. Leave behind something good. Be grateful for today, be grateful for yesterday and for as many tomorrows as you can get. Embrace the good and the bad and all the treshholds of life. It’s over before we know it.

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Bigger than the Biggest

So. I feel like blogging…so many things to blog about. The hard part is picking one. It’s the day after Christmas. Just got off the phone with my second oldest sister. This topic seems appropriate. For those who don’t know me, I’m the baby of 8 full-blooded siblings. My folks were married almost 50 years. I’m the youngest. Sixteen years separate me from the oldest. All but me and a brother are married and every one of us have at least 1 child. You’d think our Christmas would be filled with merriment and joy and family upon family. But no.

This blog will not be filled with happiness and joy, nor oozing with holiday delight and moments of love and cherished memories. No. I’m pissed. I’m pissed that I have such a large family and we don’t take the time to be together like we use to. If my Mom were still alive, she’d be pissed too. Oh yeah. We are getting together, on New Year’s Day. No food. Just stop by between 2pm and 5pm. I doubt everyone will stay 3 hours. Several nieces and nephews won’t be there and half of us live out of state. I wonder if everyone is going out of desirement or requirement. (I know it’s not a word. Sue me.) What gets me most is, back in the day, it was “we eat at noon.” You could show up early but rarely did anyone ever show up late without cause. And while it was hard to find a day when no one had committments with their inlaws, most stuck around until it was dark. What the hell is 2pm-5pm?? Having a beginning and ending time sounds more like a meeting, not a gathering of family. Maybe I should take doughnuts. (Yes. It’s okay to laugh. I am.)

Every year we use to gather on Christmas. If not Christmas day, a day very close to it. My old bedroom usually served as the coat room: I smile when I think about my old bed hidden with stacks of coats, scarfs, purses and gloves. And as you would suspect with a family my size, there were more gift than the livingroom could accomodate, but even better, it was a necessity to drag every chair and table from the basement upstairs so that no one had to stand. Everyone worked together, everyone pitched in. (No. I really had to go to the bathroom when it was time to do dishes. 😉 ) Kids chased each other down the hall, their laughs echoed from the basement where the adults would also congregate eventually to play ping pong or pool. The holiday feativites fostered a time for nieces and nephews to stregthen their bonds. A time for brothers and sisters to poke fun at ugly sweaters, compliment new hairdos, talk about new things in our lives, and maybe make a joke or two. 

An array of food always adorned several tables and nooks and crannies in the kitchen. There was always chicken and dumplings – a specialty my Mom and Grandma would tediously and religiously begin preparing the night before. And everyone brought a dish. Some we became accustom to every year: my sister-in-laws famous 8-way potatoes. Another sister’s spin on broccoli casserole. Always the familiar, and ever so popular peanut butter balls, fudge and sugar cookies with the Hershey’s kiss on the top that my second oldest sister would make. They weren’t even popular that first year she made them. Oh. She has a way with desserts. When I saw her pull up, I always ran out to help her bring stuff in just so I could get a sniff.

We are a strong family based on faith, yet while we always said grace before a meal, one of my sister’s would always include Jesus by telling a story. Usually before opening gifts to remind us what the season was all about. My niece and nephews even put on a show one year, costumes and all. They were so proud and we were proud just watching them.

All of these things – the food, the family, the traditions, the working together, the laughs, the pokes, the attempts to avoid doing dishes, the watching grandma fall asleep upright in the recliner –  it was what made the holiday special. Man. I love those memories. I can close my eyes and I’m there again.

If you find yourself complaining about traveling to visit inlaws, or trying to juggling seeing both sides of the family during the holidays, next year, just do it and be thankful. Don’t let the holiday’s become a chore. It’s not about presents and food and ugly sweaters. It’s about spending time together. Even if it’s in 3 hour allottment… No present, no dish, no card, will ever replace those moments. Maybe next year will be better. Until then, I’m going to enjoy every second, even if there’s no sugar cookie with a hershey’s kiss in the middle, because it’s more about just being together because when you take all those little things in life and put them together, they become bigger than the biggest things. And those are often the most irreplaceable.

I’m not pissed anymore. The holidays may make me sad, but I know I’m still blessed. Even my own children were scattered around the states with their significant others. So, the holidays may not be exactly as I wish they would be, but I do appreciate the memories. Maybe that’s why I’m the first to volunteer to do dishes now….

You don’t need a holiday to hug the ones you love.

Oh! And let me add: remember the movie “A Christmas Story”? The mom goes through all the work to make a big meal, and the dog eats the turkey and ruins dinner so they go to a Chinese restaurant? It wasn’t about the food, it was about being together. Thanks for reminding me of that, Dave. While we just went there to eat, it meant much more to me than you know. But that’s how God works. In the simple details. I love you.

There’s a New Cloud in Town

I notice this happens often…a word, a phrase, an image, an object, or something will grab my attention over and over again. I didn’t really notice this one at first – my facination with clouds; beautiful, infinite clouds. They come in many forms; puffs of cotton, huge mountains, ripples of cresting waves and so on… There can be a single cloud, or a sky vastly full of them. Clouds are just too cool. I love to photograph them, to look at them. (Yes…I’ve even been know to trip while aimlessly walking and looking up.) I don’t know what it is, but they just make me smile inside.

So, I’m thinking, this must be something God is using to communicate with me. Then, as I’m driving, it hits me – when I recall people talking about clouds, it’s almost always negative. Somehow clouds got the bad rap for gloom, doom and depression, like the commerical where the girl is moping around with a cloud hanging over her head. But, I think God is showing me there is good in everything, and I’m looking at the right things. No matter what you are going through, there is a purpose…I know, I know. Hearing that gets old, but it’s true. No matter where you are right now in life, you are there for a reason. Maybe to learn, maybe to teach…or maybe to just be still and trust God.

I’ve been going through some stuff, but I realigned my focus and realize I’m really learning a lot about myself. It’s not easy…easy would be to label and diagnose everyone else (ha-ha!). We should never expect that bad times will just disappear. That’s how we remember to appreciate the good times. (Remember that next time you get over a cold…you’ll know exactly what I mean. We forget how important the simple act of being able to breathe can prevent us from falling asleep. )

You all know God is doing a work in me. That’s the purpose of this blog. I can’t forget that. And I see I’ve been fighting. Still wanting what I want – I’m only human. But I’m making great progress. When you give your heart to God, changes won’t just happen overnight. It’ll hurt…like hell sometimes. But it’s worth it. I just know that. Shedding the old doesn’t mean it just falls off…it’s peels first; some flakes, then like snake’s skin, one day you wiggle out of it and leave it behind. You remember it, but that’s all it is…a memory. I’m seeing that transformation happening. I think this process allows us the time to mourn the reality of the old us, while learning what it is we don’t want to keep. Eventually, we gladly say good-bye to the old as the new and improved emerges. I’m not who I once was…but I’m exactly who I need to be.

“I keep my eyes always on the LORD. With him at my right hand, I will not be shaken.” ~ Psalm 16:8

“Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, the new creation has come: The old has gone, the new is here!”~ 2 Corinthians 5:16-18

“You were taught, with regard to your former way of life, to put off your old self, which is being corrupted by its deceitful desires; to be made new in the attitude of your minds; and to put on the new self, created to be like God in true righteousness and holiness.” ~ Ephesians 4:22-24

Memory Purge: The Art of Letting Go

There I am, gloomy Saturday morning, cleaning my room. I actually enjoy the sun hiding while it rains. It creates an ambiance of tranquility. The house is quite. Everyone is gone…just me and the soft pittering of rain on my window pane.

As I clean I find some old memories of my special friend and I recall what my accountability partner told me the day after I confronted him, “Get rid of it all, Angie – the pictures, the texts, everything.” Let go of the old so the new can have a place in my life. Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; the old has gone, the new has come!” ~ 2 Corinthians 5:17. I had to let the old go. Honestly, it took a couple days but reluctantly, I did discard the texts, photos… and surprisingly, it didn’t take long before I began to feel a lifting in my spirit. No more constant looking back; no more rehashing. No more trying to ‘figure it out’…it is what it is – or better – it was what it was. Naturally my focus redirected to my future, not the past. The new, not the old.

I sat on my bed and started to post this on Facebook, but it deserves a spot on my blog. I often pray that God lead me to what I should write and times like these, I know He hears me. I’m actually crying, but these are happy tears. I know that I know that God is with me right now.  He doesn’t want me to hurt –He doesn’t want any of us to hurt. He wants us to grow and go forward. That’s why He laid it on my heart to sit down and write what I’m feeling right now. Letting go of the old, we allow ourselves to become new. Hanging onto the past keeps us connected to the pain; it doesn’t allow for us to fully heal.

He will wipe every tear from their eyes. There will be no more death or mourning or crying or pain, for the old order of things has passed away. He who was seated on the throne said, “I am making everything new!” Then he said, “Write this down, for these words are trustworthy and true.” ~ Revelation 21:4-5

There is a special freedom in purging the things that bind us to bad memories…photos, poems, cards, texts, emails, notes, etc. By letting go of them, I let go of the mourning, the pain. I make way for the new – I make way for true healing. Those days are gone and recalling them only stirs up old feelings: resentment, regret…pain. Let your new self emerge! It will happen! I didn’t realize the impact of doing so but I’m telling you – it is so worth it. The things I can’t purge like clothes, music, movie lines…I avoided them for a long time, but they also are slowly forming new meaning. They are becoming a signal of a rebirth in my spirit…a renewing of my soul. A reminder that better days are yet to come, but they can’t if we are holding on.

I forgive myself for not unclenching my grip sooner – for not seeing the signs that were evident, for not adhering to the unsettling in my spirit that could have avoided most of this turmoil. I can let all that go because I take from it a valuable lesson. I know what I don’t want. And…I forgive him, too. The lies, the deceit, the infidelity; those are his crosses to bare. That’s between him and God. Sadly, not everyone can be saved, not even those who claim to want it – but I do. Onward bound…  

Therefore, I tell you, her many sins have been forgiven—for she loved much. But he who has been forgiven little loves little.” ~ Luke 7:47

How My Garden Grows

I laid in bed this morning with a blog forming in my mind. I had no idea that God had other plans for me. Ready to capture the day, I planted my feet on the floor, made me a delicious soy latte and headed outside to tend to my garden. I find a sense of comfort in the early morning hours, and I always find enjoyment as I witness the beauty forming in my garden. The realization of what a tiny seed can turn into when it is nurtured and loved…amazes me. While I hadn’t ignored it completely, my garden did plummet on my priority list, along with other things, during the time I was dealing with the reality of my special friend. Joyfully, from the moment God armed me with the truth, I have been equipped and ready to get my life and my priorities back in order. I’m thankful it didn’t take long and I accept the consequences of my actions. I refuse to look at anything in a negative light. That would get me nowhere. I would rather see the good. It was what I had to do, it was what I had to experience in order to grow; I don’t see it as a tragedy. I learned a valuable lesson in the midst of it and I am no longer in the grips of the despairing darkness. I can forgive and move forward, knowing who I want to be…who God wants me to be. Praise God! As watered and plucked vegetables today I discovered a special appreciation for God and all He does, for all He is. I saw myself, I saw us, God’s children, in that garden today.

Living in the heart of the city, I have a very small backyard and a big country heart. For years my garden consisted primarily of container plants inside an abandoned kennel with a few planted around its’ perimeter. Not content with this small venture, I created a raised garden bed over the course of two years on top of what use to be an unused gravel driveway behind my enclosed carport. Working with the used potting soil after each growing season and leaves from the Fall, the soil became alive with large worms and nutrients. I loved the feeling of soil in my hands as I worked with it, step by step, season to season. This is the first year I actually planted a full garden in it. Edged with concrete blocks and full of young plants, I enjoyed sitting out back looking in awe at what my hands had created – it must be how God feels about each of us.

Unfortunately, there is a mature tree stretching from my neighbor’s yard that towers over my garden. I didn’t see a problem with it at first, but now, I do. The squash and tomatoes planted towards the front, receiving the most sun, flourish. I have so many that I don’t know what to do with them and I often give them away to friends. However, the tomatoes planted towards the back of the garden have yet to produce any fruit. They are green and some appear healthy, yet with the lack of sun, they are unable to produce as they should – like us. When we are not in God’s light, our ability to produce as we should is hindered. My heart goes out to these plants. I continue to water them and tend to them – like God does us when we aren’t planted where we should be. I’m not sure they will produce as they should but I will not give up on them.

On the other hand, there is one tomato plant that sits in full sun. It looked so promising as it matured: several strong branches eagerly formed, so many that I had to devise a way to support the weight of them as they expanded well beyond the capacity of its’ container. I have always had great luck with planting tomatoes in containers so I was surprised when it took so long to actually bear fruit: today was the first time I picked any tomatoes from it. I decided to pluck a couple which weren’t fully red; I placed them on the window sill so that they could reap the full benefits of the sun, less the unbearable heat and humidity. Kind of what God does for us. He sees us trying so hard, He sees our determination and faith in following Him. He gently places us where we can better flourish. He gives us the opportunity to remove the elements crippling our growth no matter where we are. It’s up to us to see that…it’s up to us to move, to listen, to hope, to have faith in His words, to believe in His ability to help us grow. (Proverbs 3:5, Isaiah 48:17, Psalm 32:8, Psalm 48:18, Isaiah 58:11.)

Remember the sweet potato blog? The day I returned home from confronting him with his girlfriend, I immediately planted them. That felt so good. Today, four days later, sprouts are emerging from the ground. Beautiful, dark reddish green shoots springing up from the soil. I smiled. That’s me! I’m where I should be: emerged in God’s love, forgiveness, peace, mercy, hope. There is fruit forming underground. Even if I can’t see it, I know it’s there. God is tending to my needs; He heard my call, He’s seen my commitment. He is healing me from the inside out. I want to share this growth with the world. Praise God!

As I picked my bounty this morning, I often caught myself smiling. They did it! And so did I. That must be just a fraction of how God feels when we succeed; when we follow His will, when we rise above our circumstances and flourish. It’s not easy, and it’s not over. I’ve only just begun.

“The LORD will guide you always; He will satisfy your needs in a sun-scorched land and will strengthen your frame. You will be like a well-watered garden, like a spring whose waters never fail.” ~ Isaiah 58:11

“Trust in the LORD with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding.” ~ Proverbs 3:5

This is what the LORD says— your Redeemer, the Holy One of Israel: “I am the LORD your God, who teaches you what is best for you, who directs you in the way you should go.” ~ Isaiah 48:17

“I will instruct you and teach you in the way you should go; I will counsel you and watch over you.” ~ Psalm 32:8

“For this God is our God for ever and ever; he will be our guide even to the end.” ~ Psalm 48:18

Hello, Sweet Potato

We all have them in our kitchen: potatoes, sweet potatoes, onions. They are tucked away in a corner somewhere and occasionally forgotten. I have a cute basket in the corner, under the coffee pot stand where I keep mine. I have a tendency to stretch my amateur cooking muscles from time to time so onions and potatoes are a common commodity as well as the rare purchase of sweet potatoes or red potatoes. Yet, when life gets overwhelming or busy, I tend to overlook them. Sometimes the odor gives them away, or I run across them and they are past palatable, shriveled and growing roots. In the past I just threw them away in the trash can and angrily wrote them off as wasted money.

A few days ago I happened to look in my basket and discovered three sweet potatoes growing roots. I was so preoccupied with myself and what I was going through that I set them on the counter and continued about my day. Come Sunday I saw them again…and while still in my despair, I couldn’t get them out of my head. The blog I wrote before about “Believing in the Seed” resonated in me. Remember, some seeds are tossed into the rocks where they form roots but have no soil in which they need in order to flourish, so they die. (Word of God is heard but not heeded. Luke 8:4-15) The same thing happened with a bag of small red potatoes a few weeks ago. I discovered the bag and almost threw them in the trash like I usually do, but it hit me. I’ve got a garden. This is how they start…why not throw them in the ground and see what they do? So I did. And now, they are thriving. Every day I see them flourishing and wait in anticipation to dig them up and reveal my bounty. It’s a great feeling. Not only did I not waste them, they will multiply, and I have the added satisfaction of tending to them and nurturing them while they grow.

The past few days have been extremely hard for me…the hardest yet…so hard I cannot even talk about it. The road I’ve been on has been so…vivid…so paved with pain and joy and darkness and light. It’s hard to look in the mirror at who I really am. I’m learning so much that it gets overwhelming at times, yet I know He’s there in the midst of it. I know He wants to shower me with blessings. He is revealing things to me that I need to accept.

I truly believe that everyone has good in them and when I start to care for someone it’s incredibly hard for me to give up, even if it’s at the expense of myself. So what does that have to do with those sweet potatoes, you ask? Well, for some people the roots are there, but they need to be transplanted into the soil to continue their growth. There can be no fruit without going to the next phase. (Galatians 5:22-23) After the process of darkness has done its’ job it is time to move on to the next step. But some people don’t want to move on. They refuse. They choose to stay in the darkness. They get comfortable with the darkness, maybe blame others or even themselves for why they are there, and they curse it while still doing nothing to work towards that next phase. Whether out of fear of change, acceptance of their wrongs, or the ability to accept God’s will over their own, they refuse to move, throwing away themselves and ultimately their happiness, right along with it. While it’s a good thing that I care so much and believe in others, I have to limit it to those that bear fruit. I am weak but I am ready to move on. I have to be transplanted and remove myself from the darkness no matter how much I love the person I am leaving there. I cannot be subject to the pain that someone is inviting into their life by continuing to be content in the darkness, especially when they proclaim to know God. I’m not sure how I’ll feel once I’m in the soil, but I do know that I want out of the painful darkness. God only has good things waiting for us if we will listen to Him. He can help us bear fruit, He wants us to bear fruit, that is what each of us are meant to do: “I am the vine; you are the branches. If a man remains in me and I in him, he will bear much fruit; apart from me you can do nothing. This is to my Father’s glory, that you bear much fruit, showing yourselves to be my disciples.” John 15:5, 8. He doesn’t expect perfect, but He does want us to follow Him…to trust Him. What’s really odd about this is, I wasn’t sure how this whole story ended, but now I do. This is how God speaks to me. And boy, sometimes you have to be an extremely patient and thorough listener.

God never wants us to feel wasted. He will never throw us out. If we are in darkness it is because of our own choosing. Some may need to remain in the darkness for awhile before they understand, but some of us know what to do. Again I’m reminded of my blog on how we are like children stomping our feet wanting it our way when He is revealing to us our faults and giving us a way out. We just have to reach for it, no matter how scary it is. He wants us to sprout from the darkness in our lives and grow onto the next phase. He wants us to graduate from those experiences. We rejoice in the darkness because that is where we have the ability to grow! (Romans 5:3-4) He doesn’t want us to keep throwing ourselves away, returning to the same habits and same feelings of pain. He wants us to bear fruit in our lives. And He can help because He is the Almighty Gardener. But we have to listen, no matter how hard that is.

Fruit in our lives leads to things like love, goodness, peace, self-control. (Galatians 5:22-23) The devil doesn’t make us do anything, we each have a choice. I’ve said before that freewill isn’t free and this is what I mean. My way always seems to lead to the same pain and hurt, but His will wants me to be free from that. So, I refuse to be afraid anymore. I refuse to give up on myself. I am reaching for every form of help and support more feverishly than ever before: books, bible, note cards, Christian music, spiritual guidance, friends, prayers, websites, you name it. Today I even posted on Facebook that I need prayers. This may all seem desperate, but I am! I want to get off this worn path that I’ve been on. I want to be free from the pain that keeps repeating in my life. I WANT TO BE TRANSPLANTED! I have faith. Strong faith and I’m using it in every form I know possible. I may have no clue what the future holds or how I’ll feel about someone tomorrow, but I do know God is here, and somehow, I’ll be okay…God wants to see each of us flourish. He wants to nourish us, tend to us and help us grow. He wants us all to bear good fruit. Life is a continuous process. Stop throwing yourself away.

“Not only so, but we also rejoice in our sufferings, because we know that suffering produces perseverance; perseverance, character; and character, hope.” ~ Romans 5:3-4

“You will eat the fruit of your labor; blessings and prosperity will be yours.” ~ Psalm 128:2

“Tell the righteous it will be well with them, for they will enjoy the fruit of their deeds.” ~ Isaiah 3:10

“The fruit of righteousness will be peace; the effect of righteousness will be quietness and confidence forever.” ~ Isaiah 32:17

 4While a large crowd was gathering and people were coming to Jesus from town after town, he told this parable: 5“A farmer went out to sow his seed. As he was scattering the seed, some fell along the path; it was trampled on, and the birds of the air ate it up. 6Some fell on rock, and when it came up, the plants withered because they had no moisture. 7Other seed fell among thorns, which grew up with it and choked the plants. 8Still other seed fell on good soil. It came up and yielded a crop, a hundred times more than was sown.”
      When he said this, he called out, “He who has ears to hear, let him hear.”

 9His disciples asked him what this parable meant. 10He said, “The knowledge of the secrets of the kingdom of God has been given to you, but to others I speak in parables, so that,
   ” ‘though seeing, they may not see;
      though hearing, they may not understand.’
[a]

 11“This is the meaning of the parable: The seed is the word of God. 12Those along the path are the ones who hear, and then the devil comes and takes away the word from their hearts, so that they may not believe and be saved. 13Those on the rock are the ones who receive the word with joy when they hear it, but they have no root. They believe for a while, but in the time of testing they fall away. 14The seed that fell among thorns stands for those who hear, but as they go on their way they are choked by life’s worries, riches and pleasures, and they do not mature. 15But the seed on good soil stands for those with a noble and good heart, who hear the word, retain it, and by persevering produce a crop.” ~ Luke 8:4-15

22But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, 23gentleness and self-control. Against such things there is no law.” ~ Galatians 5:22-23

I Smile

Love this song. Let’s list some things we are happy for today:

  • People who read my post, leave comments, email me encouraging messages or prayer requests 🙂
  • People who trust me (love me, think about me, etc.) 🙂
  • People at my church when they sing and pray 🙂
  • People who tell me to write a book (But…where do I start?!) 😀
  • People who use or repeat my FB postings 😀
  • My children – when they need me (even at 21), when they smile, when they are who they are 🙂 😀
  • When other people smile 🙂
  • When I get flowers delivered to my work (and I didn’t pay for them) 😀
  • When it’s pay day! 😉
  • When I think about how far I’ve come 🙂
  • When I think about my special friend 😀
  • Knowing the best is yet to come! 😀
  • When I think of everything God has seen me through 🙂
  • When I think of my parents love for me 🙂
  • When it’s Saturday! 😉
  • When I think of my future 🙂
  • When I look at my past and can walk away with a lesson 🙂
  • When I think about the direction I am going 🙂
  • Laughter! 😛

I could go on and on but you get the idea. Enjoy this bubbly song and think about all the things you have to be happy for – things that make you smile! Even if your day sucks, give happy 10 minutes…it could change your day!