Saturday, October 30, 2010

Fall Reflections

Wow! I haven't blogged since December 31st, 2009? That seems ludicrous to me. I can't believe how much I've focused on so many things other than what I've needed to this year, and how many resolutions didn't get followed through with, and sadly it's almost time for 2011! So much is going forgive the lengthiness of this first blog to catch up on all that has gone on. Well we're still in Home Branch so I guess the moving to Sumter didn't work out. We definitely still need to move, but we are praying about moving to Charleston after summer graduation.  I still hope/aim to finish nursing school in the summer. Tom is still on target to finish his associates in computers and then pursue his bachelor's in computer forensics/information system security while working.  We still have a house full of furry babies, no human ones yet.  This year has been challenging and I've made some steps forward and fallen in some ditches.  We got together with some old Residence Life buddies last weekend in Charleston and it was great fun and awesome to reconnect. I've been able to spend a weekend at a Women's conference in Columbia with a college friend whom I love to pieces and have reconnected with via facebook :)!  We've been to some soccer games, for my almost 5 year old nephew, some chorus to come for my 9 year old nephew and my 22 year old nephew graduates college in December...I'm sorry when did we become adults and how do we make it stop? Whew!  God is still mending broken relationships, some have made progress by leaps and bounds, others still in the works, and some that sadly are always going to be what they are and I have to learn to love and let go and stop being co-dependent.  Having baby fever like crazy, but praying about God's will for the when, where and how of children.  Realizing that a lot of my great college friends live closer than I thought and they are so encouraging to be in contact with whether it's email or facebook or whatever! Very Thankful for all of these things. Til next time....

Thursday, December 31, 2009

New Year's Resolutions

Hello friends and Happy New Year!

I thought I would start the new year by doing some blogging and thoughts on new year's resolutions since we all love to make them.  I don't know about you guys but whew! I am so glad that this year is behind me and it's time to have some new things going on.  First of all, I am thankful to be getting back to my nursing classes and being further on the road to becoming an RN.  I am thankful for some family reconnection that I really didn't think would ever happen, but God is so good to us.  It has also been a rough year. I know I am by far not the only one that feels that way and even now as I reflect..I know there are those out there hurting much worse than I.  The past month has been a revelation of sorts..and might I say not good ones! I have learned things that have knocked me for a loop and made me question everything I believed growing up...and have had to make some hard decisions that are best for me and that I feel God is calling us to.  My heart seems like it has been ripped and torn so many times in 2009, anyone else feel that way?  So, what then will my new year's resolutions be. Let's see...

1.) Seek healing, comfort and Godly guidance about my past issues that have come back and the new issues that date back to my past until present. 2.) Finish Nursing school  3.) Hopefully move to Sumter in a month or two....for reasons I will keep to myself.  4.) Commit to letting God be in charge of my life everyday, being consistant in my church attendance, bible study...and focusing on the Lord.  5.) Learning to let go..realizing that all you can do about some situations is pray and Let God.  6.) Keep rebuilding some broken relationships. 7.) Taking time everyday to reflect and be thankful for all God has given me and continues to bless me with instead of focusing on the stress and things that cannot be changed.

Also these verses are my New Year's verses and I think they are indeed important: 2 Corinthians 5:17“Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; the old has gone, the new has come!”- this verse says it all. God's word is true for all of us, no matter where we have been, we are new in Him!!!  Next is Matthew 5:44-48 43"You have heard that it was said, 'Love your neighbor[h] and hate your enemy.' 44But I tell you: Love your enemies[i] and pray for those who persecute you, 45that you may be sons of your Father in heaven. He causes his sun to rise on the evil and the good, and sends rain on the righteous and the unrighteous. 46If you love those who love you, what reward will you get? Are not even the tax collectors doing that? 47And if you greet only your brothers, what are you doing more than others? Do not even pagans do that? 48Be perfect, therefore, as your heavenly Father is perfect.  This last one takes some time to digest and reflect...take some time with it.  Love your enemies...even the unrighteous can love those who love we are to love, really love our enemies as well.  Enemies? That means the people we are at war with, the terrorists, the unsaved everywhere, those who hurt you, those who continue to hurt you...we all deserve hell so we should be thankful for God's grace, forgiveness, compassion and mercy.  These qualities do not make us weak but rather make us more like Jesus, and afterall that is the point of this relationship isn't it?

What are you going to do in this NEW YEAR?

Monday, December 7, 2009

Tis the Season

I don't know if anyone reads this blog, but i enjoy writing so I will keep it up.  I love this time of year.  I love buying presents for others and I have to reel myself in or I would spend every dime and then some.  I love Christmas lights and decorating the tree.  I love to go to singing christmas trees and plays.  It's the only time of year I actually want it to be cold so I can stand by a fire and drink hot cocoa.  Truly, it is the most wonderful time of the year.

I find myself counting all my blessings more this year.  I am thankful for my family and friends.  We had an awesome Thanksgiving and stayed together and played together, literally all day.  I am not sure I have ever laughed that hard in my entire life. This is also the time of year when you reflect on everything that's happened in your life...i'm not sure why it all floods.  You can find yourself wanting to change 1,000 things that should have been done differently.  So, thankfulness for God's forgiveness, grace, love and mercy starts to overwhelm me.  People always talk about Karma.  Well it's not really Karma, but God wants us to extend his love, grace, forgiveness and joy to others.  If we do, He blesses us with it in return, but remember if you are harsh, judgemental, haughty...that is likely what will come back to you as well.  The media bombards our senses this time of year. Buy this, do that, Santa is coming. It's easy to get caught up in it, I do find myself doing it from time to time.  Let's refocus ourselves on the real reason we need to celebrate.  No Virginia, Santa isn't the reason despite the Macy's commercials and he doesn't live on and on.  However, Jesus is.  God sent his son to live and go through all the things we go through, to take on our sin, and to restore our path back to Him.  What better reason for celebrating? I don't know what exact month or day or even time of year Jesus was actually born.  Perhaps we do celebrate this particular date because of a pagan calendar.  Let's remember what's important though, God did send his son to be born through Mary in Bethlehem.  God did show the shephards the star to follow and they visited him in a manger because there was no room in the inn.  He was born, He lived, He died for us. He rose again and one day we will be with him once more! What more do we need to be joyous and giving and loving towards each other and our God than that? Merry Christmas everyone!

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

A Fresh Start

Usually we save our "fresh start" speeches and declarations for New Year's, but I am in need of a real fresh start and so there is no time like the present, or so they say. My life has been crazy to put it mildly. My walk with God has been a roller coaster. My love for others and myself has been poor. It's time to take responsibility, ask for forgiveness and move on. Throughout the last 10 years, I have been to places emotionally and literally i never thought i would go or survive. I have done acts that i declared i would never, have hurt and lost people i can never get back, and done more damage to myself and those I love and care about than I can fathom. All of that happened and I'm a christian. Some might doubt that, I don't blame you, there were periods in there that I myself doubted it. I can tell you that at age 14 i did accept Christ as my savior. I believe wholeheartedly in forgiveness, compassion, mercy and grace because i so desperately need it in my own life and am profoundly aware of how much i do not deserve it but God pours it on me, nevertheless. I feel like the past few months have been an awakening in many senses. I have discovered truths about those i love and myself that rip my heart wide open and I am broken because of it. I have said and done things to people I love, that i never thought possible...and in return have recieved actions and hurt that I never thought i would have to endure. I will not be specific or name names because it's private, however if in any way God can use all of the horribleness for His glory, then i will share my lessons and heartaches with you all. Where do I start? I have been through a horrible divorce, completely my fault, lost family, struggled in a new marriage in ways i never thought and faced the death and illness of many i love and care about. When my first marriage ended in 2004(the divorce wasn't actual until 05), I had a nervous breakdown complete with hospitalizations. That in turn lead to a 3 year misdiagnosis and overcoming side effects of medications i didn't need. The fact that everyone didn't walk away from me during this time is astounding to me. I remarried in 2006. My marriage was rocky for a long time to say the least and we have had battles beyond my imagination. There were times i didn't think i would make it, but God's grace and mercy always prevails. I lost 2 uncles, one grandparent, struggled with relationships within my family and friends, fought with family and friends, all in this 10 year time span that felt like sooo much longer. I am 34 and finally getting my life together, though it is not through anything i have said or done, but all because of God's love and mercy. My heart breaks when i think of all the past events and the 1000 things i wish i could do differently, but all that i can really do at this point is repent and move on. Which brings me to some research i've done lately and let me share some of the definitions and info. i found.

Forgiveness is a decision to let go of resentments and thoughts of revenge. Forgiveness is the act of untying yourself from thoughts and feelings that bind you to the offense committed against you.Forgiveness can even lead to feelings of understanding, empathy and compassion for the one who hurt you. When we're unforgiving, it's we who pay the price over and over.

It may also be helpful to reflect on times you've hurt others and on those who have forgiven you. As you recall how you felt, it may help you to understand the position of the person who hurt you.

Your hostility, resentment and misery have made way for compassion, kindness and peace.

we have to be willing to forgive ourselves.

Accept the fact that you — like everyone else — aren't perfect. Accept yourself despite your faults. Admit your mistakes. Commit to treating others with compassion, empathy and respect

Compassion is the ultimate and most meaningful embodiment of emotional maturity. It is through compassion that a person achieves the highest peak and deepest reach in his or her search for self-fulfillment. Christ stressed love, honesty, justice, diligence, active caring for others, and reconciliation. Christ made it clear that the relationship with one's neighbors was the key sign of the health of one's relationship with God

Repentance is a change of thought and action to correct a wrong and gain forgiveness from a person who is wronged.

Hard lessons to learn, hard lessons to recieve. My prayer to God is that i may truly embrace His forgiveness and to seek forgiveness from those i have wronged, to live a life of compassion from this point forward because i have now walked in those shoes, and to truly repent and show repentence in my life. Everyone will not forgive the wrong you have done to them, another hard truth to receive. It takes a long time to repair relationships with those who have wrong you and you them even when they are willing to forgive and reconcile. Forgiveness is not the same as forgetting. Letting go is the hardest thing I have ever done. Blessings however are pouring down with God's love. He has healed my current marriage and is shaping and molding us, something i thought might be impossible. I am in school and actually going to finish and become a nurse. I have a loving family, though trying at times, and we are trying to work out our differences and just love each other. I have some of the best friends ever, God has placed some true angels in my life. I am reconnecting with some I haven't spoken to in a long time but are an inspiration and encouragement in my life. Miracles still happen. God can still use you, bless you, love you. Learn from your mistakes and move on...truly repent and seek forgiveness and there will be healing. Count on God to be who He says He is.

So today, God and I are going forward together, Him leading the way, and i'm praying for strength to do His will and bring Him glory. I hope something I have shared helps someone else. Until another blog...peace and grace to all of you.