I have tried over and over to write a New Year's post. I wanted it to be profound and uplifting, enouraging in the faith of God. But here is all I can come up with...God is FAITHFUL, HEALER, LOVE, FRIEND, PROVIDER, INTERCESSOR, COMFORTER, and life RESTORER! All that I have experienced in this year, God came to my side in the above forms. Nothing less. So, as I welcome 2011, I give thanks to the One who brought me through 2010!! Happy New Year!!
I have a blogger friend who tagged me in a blog to do this. Seems interesting so, since I actually a spare moment to do it, I'll give it a try. You post 12 likes, 1 love, and 8 hates. Here goes...
Likes The sound of my boys' laughter The beach The feeling I get after completing a good run A good cheeseburger A nice glass of wine Solitude Hearing my children first thing in the morning...even if I'm still sleepy A sermon that steps on your toes My alma mater..Liberty University People who are compassionate The smell after a rain Spontaneous shopping/restuarant trips with my friends
Love My husband!! He is a wonderful man, great father, and good friend. He works hard for our family and tries his best to honor God and leads his family spiritually.
Hates (although I have always felt that 'hate' is a strong word..strongly dislike is what I'm going for) Racism Cancer To see my children's tears Lose touch or closeness with a friend To see my friends go through difficult things I cannot make better for them A bad attitude Swimsuit season, especially after having a baby less than a year before it rolls around again Getting older
Okay, guess now I have to tag others. Amie at My Venting Space, Royale at Roro Times, and Holly at Beautiful Suburbia. Have fun!
I have some really good girl friends. I remember early on in my marriage my husband and I were discussing our relationships with our friends. He told me(being fresh out of college) that in ten years I would be lucky if I could count the number of close friends I have on one hand. How true he was!!!
Two of my girlfriends and I always celebrate our birthdays together. Our birthdays are fairly close to each other so we usually meet and solve the world's problems in about 3 hours. Sounds just like us women, right? Every year we create a 'to do' list for us to accomplish together. Each year we say we are going to go somewhere exotic or just go shopping. So this year, we are finally going to do it!!! I am so excited I can hardly contain myself!
Also, in September, our church takes an annual ladies trip to the beach. It's a good time of spiritual, physical, and emotional refreshing. I look forward to it every year, even when I am unable to attend I love to hear the stories of all the ladies who come back giddy like teenagers. So, I am looking forward to that as well.
Being the mother, wife, sister, daughter, co-worker sometimes can get pretty draining. There are so many hats we have to don in a day's time. It's so important for us ladies to grab some of our closest gal pals and engage in some good ole fun. Laughing, giggling, cutting jokes...ahh just being in the presence of other women can be so uplifting. So, to all my girlies, love you and go have some fun!
So, my baby is almost 8 months old and I'm still working on getting back to pre-pregnancy size. I am back to my pre-pregnancy weight but I had gained some weight before I got pregnant so its this weight that I'm working on getting back to. Not to mention, things just aren't the same as they were before : )
In the past, I obsessed over every pound, every bite of food, and every minute spent at the gym. Consequently, all this time and energy I spent trying to control my weight robbed me of some good times. Times I could have spent with my friends or family. Time I could have spent in precious fellowship with my Lord. So much time lost because I was too consumed that I couldn't enjoy the moment. This time around I have a different approach.
This time, I am allowing God to take control of my weight instead of me doing it alone. It's amazing how much time I have now and how liberating it is to let go. Now, don't get me wrong, some days I struggle big time. The other day, a song came to mind and I had to write this down because it spoke to me and to my particular struggle that day.
The song is While I'm Waiting. The verse and chorus really struck me:
I'm waiting, I'm waiting on You Lord and I am hopeful I'm waiting You Lord though it is painful, but patiently I will wait.
I will move ahead, bold and confident Taking every step in obedience
While I'm waiting I will serve You While I'm waiting I will worship While I'm waiting I will not faint I'll be running the race, even while I wait.
I'm waiting I'm waiting on You Lord and I am peaceful I'm waiting on You Lord though its not easy, no, but faithfully I will wait.
Man! What words! You see, since I have turned this all over to the Lord I'm waiting, literally. Easy, no its not. But, while I'm waiting, I'm trusting that He will take me to the place I need to be. It may end up that He wants me to be at a size and weight that is larger than what I'm accustomed to, but that's okay. I don't think that anyone says 'boy, that servant of God is chubby' No, not all. And I don't think my close friends would ditch me because I don't look a certain way. And if they do, I keep reminding myself that man looks on the outside appearance but God looks on the heart.
I'm so glad that God speaks to me a lot through music. Some days, I'm not sure if I would even make it through the most difficult of days without it. But, I just felt so empowered to keep hanging on and letting Him be the artist of my body. It's definitely been a learning experience and patience building, but I'm so glad to be here at this point in my life.
The 2009/2010 year has been chocked full of changes of for me. Now, typically, I adapt to change pretty easily and actually welcome change. I definitely embrace change if its going to induce efficiency, productivity, and structure. I venture to say that theseall these changes have not included the fore mentioned attributes. So, I press on. I guess I am just writing more for me to "air out" my feelings. You see, I didn't realize how many changes I have gone through since 2009 until I looked at my calendar and thought, hmm we're almost half way through 2010!! Really?! What have I been doing?
First, I rang in 2009 finding out that we were going to add another child to our family. We were blessed with another sweet boy. So, pretty much all of 2009 involved changed. Nine months of watching my body change(more on that later), newborn schedule change, family dynamics change, and just adjusting to having TWO children now. Because of our new addition, we decided that I would scale down my time at work. So, now, I only work two days a week. A big change for me.
Another change that is occurring in my life is that I am not part of my women's bible study. I love these ladies and I love the accountability I had when delving into the word with them. Not to mention the power of praying together. You really bond with people when you become real and share some of life's toughest problems with one another. I haven't been able to attend the last two studies because the hubby has a job that requires him to be away in the evenings and I work every other Thursday which is the night that it is held. Since this "change" I feel so disconnected from these ladies and it just hurts my heart to not be in fellowship with them.
As I stated earlier, I went from working three days+ a week down to two days and that has been a HUGE change for me. At first, I thought it was going to be great. I envisioned lots of play dates with my son's friends whose mommies stayed at home, wonderful crafts we would create, lunch dates with Daddy, home cooked meals every night, a clean house, and a more organized me! Well, actually what I discovered was lonliness, not just for me, but Coen as well. The first couple of months after Caden's birth, was a whirlwind of diaper changes, feedings, naps, schedules that I hardly found time to even shower. All the while, poor Coen was hanging out with me and his brother. I can count on one hand the actual play dates he has had. I did not realize how isolated I would feel "staying at home" I didn't realize how isolated Coen would be with me "staying at home". We actually have tasked some great crafts, and that makes me feel accomplished. The lunch dates with Daddy were pretty frequent during the fall, but now, I can't remember our last lunch date with him. Home cooked meals every night, a clean house, and a more organized me...well, I'm working on it. We eat in most evenings and I love mealtime now that Caden is old enough to sit in his high chair and join in our family time. I am realizing that I am the most important part of childrens' lives right now and no amount of play dates could take the place of that.
A few weeks ago, we found out that my mom has breast cancer. She will undergo surgery on Friday and then have six weeks of radiation therapy. My change here is that now, I am experiencing role reversal. Somehow, I thought this would come later in life. But, here I am, preparing my mom and myself as her care taker for a major surgery, recovery, and treatment. Doctor visits, xrays, research, my head is spinning from all the medical data that I have looked up regarding my mom's condition. And, even though I work in the medical field, I am always amazed at how we continue to advance in technology and pharmacology. It really gives you hope. But I know where our REAL hope lies.
So, with all these changes, the biggest change that I realized that has occurred in my life is that I have had to be a "BIG GIRL" and accept things for the way they are. I had to relinquish my fantasy world and grab onto reality. Life is busy, life is slow; life is stagnate, life is sporadic; life is healthy, life is fragile. So as I embrace change...I embrace life.
My husband Glen and I had the chance to go to Wilmington for a few days last week. It was a great time. Mostly, I relaxed by reading, sleeping, and exercising. Glen was in meetings all day and in the evenings we went out for dinner and a stroll.
During my break, I had a lot of time to surf the net and catch up on some of my favorite blogs. I decided that it was time for me not only to start blogging more, but update my blog site as well by giving it a new makeover. Just in time for spring. I got this really cute layout from blogaroozer.com. It was easy and had easy to follow instructions as well as blogger tips and tricks. It's my new favorite find. Tell me what you think of my new page!
On April 4th, my friend Holly celebrated her birthday. I follow her blog and you can too, on the side of my page. Anyway, on friday, April 3rd my friends Leslie, Sahara, and I went over to Holly's house to celebrate her birthday. I love these ladies and we had such a great time. We planned on watching a movie, however, we just couldn't stop talking! We talked about everything, but the most intriguing conversation we had was how God was working in all of friendships. I am a firm believer that if you put God first in your friendships, it makes them harder for them to fall apart! It was such a wonderful time of sharing, caring, and fun. Thank you ladies for a wonderful evening!
Now, if I could just figure out how to post pictures....hang with me, more changes to come!
It has been a while since I have posted. No excuse, but, things have been pretty crazy around here lately. I have been pondering on friendships for quite some time now and feel the urge to share some of my thoughts with you. I am in no way an expert on relationships, but, having gone through some tough times does put me in a position to speak candidly about how we as women sabotage some of the best things God created for us.
Before I embark on this series ( I am not sure how many it will be) I wanted to share my story with you and how friendships became such a passion to me. Shortly after the birth of my son I lost a dear friend to...I am not quite sure what. There never was a real reason why my friend abandoned our friendship or treated me so cold. I prayed, I searched my heart, wracked my brain trying to figure out what it was that I did to make this person hate me so much. I always came up with nothing. I made a couple of attempts to reconnect and restore the relationship with her the Biblical way only to have my feelings hurt again and again. She admitted that even she, herself, really didn't know the reason why she chose to not be my friend anymore. The sad thing about this broken friendship is that it also hurt other connecting friendships. So, for the past two years I have been allowing God to heal me from this friendship that was severed in a malicious way. It has not been an easy road, and it definitely has been slow...I mean like 5mph slow. Some days I still feel bumps in the road. But, the result of it has been eye and heart opening on how I never want Satan to infiltrate my friendships anymore. I do believe that Satan does not want us to have and maintain friendships with others. It is through those relationships that we can grow, love, edify, fellowship, and glorify. Where two or three are gathered in His name, He is in the middle of it! No wonder the devil does not want us to have friends! So, let's begin on how to arm ourselves and shield ourselves from this spiritual on our earthly relationships.
First, lets define friendship. Webster's Dictionary defines friendship as 1. the state of being a friend 2. the quality or state of being friendly. What does the word friendship mean to you? How do you maintain the state of being a friend or being friendly? Notice that the definition of friendship does not necessitate both parties to participate. The state of being a friend, the act of being friendly, does not require reciprocating. And here is where we as humans mess up. We think that friendship must be reciprocated..simply not true. We do not understand that the definition of friendship is SOLO.
So how do we take on the "state" of being a friend or being friendly? Proverbs 18:24 tells us that "a man who has friends must show himself friendly." Now I know that everyone views friendliness differently. But let's look at what the Bible views friendliness as. First, Acceptance - Romans 15:7 "Therefore accept one another just as Christ has also accepted you..and give one another a friendly reception as Christ has received you, thus promoting the Glory of God". Second, Unity - Romans 12:16 "Live in harmony with each other. Don't be arrogant, but be friendly to humble people. Don't think that you are smarter than you really are." Third, Love, John 15:12 "This is my commandment that you Love one another even as I have loved you" Here it is folks the basis of everything..LOVE. God specifically tells us to love others as He loved us. This is the root of all friendships..even when we don't feel loved back. If we truly viewed(acceptance and unity) everyone the way God sees us we would love them and be motivated out of that love to put it into action. And putting love to action is the state of being friendly and being a friend.
I feel I could go on and on on this topic, but God is showing me things in bits and pieces. I have been given a desire by God to figure out why are we so terrible at creating and maintaining friendships when, God specifically wants us to embrace others as friends? Why as women, do we sabotage other women with our cat-like tendencies? How can we break the cycle? Hang on, more will be revealed. Part II to follow.
I am a wife to Glen, mother to two precious boys Coen and Caden, and friend to some wonderful women. I love travelling and spending time with my family and friends. I love Jesus and know that I am nothing without Him being first in my life.