I'm just a wife and mother who earnestly desires to grow in my faith and it's demonstration. DISCLAIMER! I have absolutely no problem with women in the clergy. As a matter of fact, I have several female pastors who I consider friends. In my home, the pastor is a male so the pronouns I use to refer to a pastor tend to be male. This is not a statement of any kind. Just a reflection of my every day life!

Archive for January, 2015

Quotes

Nothing super profound from my own head today.  Just some quotes from a Joyce Meyer study I’m doing!

These two deal with the painful issues from the past –

“I encourage people to let go of their past, but never to run from it.  The only way to gain victory over the pain of our past is to let God walk us back through that doorway of pain and into victory.”

We have to let God take us through things and let Him work in us so our mess becomes our message. Difficult things that we have endured in our past prepare us for God’s blessings in our future.”

(Can you tell which phrase really jumped out at me?!)

These were on the subject of joy –

“We will never enjoy life unless we make a quality decision to do so.  Satan is an expert at stealing and our joy is one of his favorite targets.  Nehemiah 8:10 tells us that the joy of the Lord is our strength.  In John 10:10 we are told that “the thief” comes to kill, steal, and destroy, but that Jesus came that we might have and enjoy life.  Satan is the thief, and one of the things he seeks to steal is our joy.  If he can steal our joy from us, we will be weak; and when we are weak, the enemy takes advantage of us. Weak believers are no threat to him and his work of destruction.  In order to live as God intends for us to live, the first thing we must do is truly believe that it is God’s will for us to experience continual joy.  Then we must decide to enter into that joy.

“Joy and enjoyment are available just as misery is available.  Righteousness and peace are available and so are condemnation and turmoil.  There are blessings and curses available, and that is why Deut. 30:19 tells us to choose life and blessings.”

And this was probably my favorite!

“Regardless of how it may happen or who may be responsible, it is hard to go on when everything we have counted on falls down around us.  That’s when those of us who have the creative power of the Holy Spirit on the inside can get a new vision, a new direction, and a new goal to help us overcome the downward pull of disappointment, discouragement, and destruction.”

Still “mentally chewing” on all of these so I’ll just let you do with them what you will! Enjoy!

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A Thankful New Year

So far, I’ve spent about 21 hours getting assignments, assessments, discussion questions, group discussion topics, exit questions, and “tech tool of the day” stuff ready for the Spring semester. New textbook (yay!) meant time for an overhaul. Have to edit assignments since I teach one section in a “normal” classroom setting and teach the same class in an online, self-paced setting. But I’m so glad I work part-time in the education industry with it’s cushy hours and vacation times where I have all this time off from anything work-related!  I’m just kidding.  Most of the people I know are very intelligent and realize that good teachers do not get all of Christmas Break completely “work-free”.

But seriously – loving the way that the semester is shaping up. And I’m still having a hard time wrapping my brain around the fact that I am heading into the Spring of my FIFTH year teaching at Iowa Central Community College!! My tenth semester as a College Professor. Wow!

December 30, 2014 was the fifth anniversary of the day we moved into Fort Dodge, IA.  There are times that I think, “Has it already been five years?!”  Other times my brain runs in the opposite direction – “We’ve ONLY been here five years?”

Maybe it’s because so much has happened in those five years –

  • One child graduates from Cosmetology school
  • Two children graduate from high school (to be followed by the last child in the family this Spring)
  • One child graduated with her A.A. and will complete her B.A. in May
  • I’ve directed 5 shows at the local high school (with number six auditioning in late February!)
  • I’ve taught nine semesters as a college professor (starting number 10 in 11 days!)
  • I’ve played in the pit for 3 shows at the college (and the fourth starts soon!)
  • Hubby has done a number of weddings and, sadly, funerals.
  • Eldest child has gotten a full-time job and moved out on her own.
  • One child is engaged and getting married before 2015 ends

And my list could go on.  Have there been negative experiences?  Sure.  No human being alive is completely free from frustration or difficulties.  But there has been so much about our time here that has included really good things!  So happy anniversary to my family and I!  Can’t wait to see what the next five years holds!

Lighting a Candle

“It’s better to light a candle than to curse the darkness.”

(Motto of a group called “The Christophers” founded in 1945)

The quote above is attributed to many people.  Just Google it and you’ll see what I mean!  It’s been used by former first ladies, the head of Amnesty International, and others.  The oldest record of the entire quote anyone can find is in the paperwork created when “The Christophers” was founded by Father James Keller.

The fact that this statement has been quoted over and over says something.  Something powerful.  And it perfectly sums up my focus for the year 2015.  It’s easy to rage on social media about things that annoy us.  We argue with one another in the “cyberworld” really well.  But it doesn’t fix things.  And it tends to leave the individuals involved in the argument all worked up.

Maybe it’s just me.  Maybe others get involved in the argument and then walk away, never to think of the issue again.  Maybe.  But I doubt it.

So my goal for this year is simple.  Whenever I can, where ever I can I am going to “light a candle”.  It may take the form of a financial donation or a shoulder to cry on or educating myself on a particular cause and then sharing what I know with others.  The actions may vary, but the purpose will always remain the same. I’m tired of the arguing. I’m tired of watching people make ugly assumptions about total strangers they are arguing with online.  I’m tired of the stress and grumpy attitude that tends to accompany that kind of negative engagement.  So I’m choosing, in 2015, to be a “candlelighter”, for lack of a better term. It is my intent to brighten up my own little corner of the world one candle at a time.

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