Tag Archives: faith

Freak-outs and Faith: Learning to Trust in Uncertain Times

8 Sep

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Hello, family and friends! It’s good to be getting back into the blogging world! I kind of took an unplanned break for most of the summer, so I figured I’d catch everyone up on a little bit of what’s been going on…

The following paragraphs were actually written about two months ago and I never clicked the ol’ “publish” button. I think it’s worth sharing to see the mental roller coaster I’ve been riding in my head!

Every 2-3 months, I tend to get stressed and overwhelmed about finances and other circumstances. About 90 percent of the time, I’m genuinely feeling like, “Life is good. I’m blessed. Things are great,” and then I have a few days or more when my mind goes into overdrive. I’m suddenly aware of ways that I’m “not enough.” The house isn’t clean enough, my face isn’t clear enough, I don’t make enough money, I don’t have enough time, etc. My jaw sets into a semi-permanent clench for a couple days and my neck and shoulder muscles tighten. It’s no wonder that I have a history of TMJ and migraines.

These short-lived, usually minor, quarterly freak-outs have resulted in various outcomes ranging from the start of my coupon obsession to pre-term labor. Yes, I actually started bleeding and had contractions the very next morning after a teary-eyed Sunday stressing about our family’s financial situation with a new baby on the way. Fortunately, my early labor was stopped during a 3-day stay in the hospital, but it resulted in over two months of bed rest in 2011. I can’t help but think that the two were related.

This stressful patch is lasting a little longer than usual, although I’m learning to try be patient, trust, and sit in the “uncomfortable.” I really feel that God is using this time of transition for a purpose, as He often does! We’ve made it through many times before, so I know this time will be no different. With our oldest starting Kindergarten this fall at a Catholic school (as if tuition isn’t already outrageous, the darn cost of uniforms is going to put me over the edge), looking at our futures career-wise, and brainstorming opportunities for additional income, there doesn’t seem to be a quick solution. I do kind of feel that Adam and I are at a crossroad moment in our lives. There’s no way we can continue much longer the way things are right now. Coupons aren’t cutting it anymore.

I do have to take a time-out for a minute, to recognize that we really have been blessed with our current work-family situation. I work at a faith-based agency with a lot of great people. Adam has been able to work second shift and partial weekends to be with our girls during the day. While this has been amazing during this phase of our lives, we’re starting to look towards the near future and how we need to adapt to the next phase that includes a Catholic school education for our girls. I understand that this is our choice, but after much prayer and discussion we feel it is the best one for our family and we are willing to look at what we can do to make this happen long-term.

My mind has been swirling with ideas and possibilities. Pursue grant-writing? Take classes to get a paralegal certificate? Start one of the website concepts I’ve been pondering? Find a higher paying job in my field? I don’t just want to make money, though – I want to do something that’s meaningful. Adam is looking into getting more jingle work and waiting on a possible promotion and shift-change in a year or two at his job. What direction is the right way to go?

Now you may know why I’ve been a little quiet on the blog the past month or so… Most of my time in the evenings has been spent brainstorming, researching, and tv-watching to reduce stress. I didn’t even fill out a monthly goal sheet for June! ūüė¶ I started out the year so full of intention and I have accomplished a lot of the goals I set for myself for 2014, but sometimes, er, maybe often times, I have to let go of my plans! And, I’m trying to be okay with where I am. God does have a plan, and right here, right now is part of it.

Although, I must say I can’t wait to be able to look back and say, “Ah, that’s what that time was for!” But for now, I’m listening! God, my ears and eyes are open! Holy Spirit please show me the path to follow and give me the courage to do your will!

Well, fast forward another couple months and I’m brimming with excitement and joy over a new project passion that I’ve been wanting to jump into but kept finding reasons to prolong (time, money, lack of experience, doubt, fear, insecurity, etc.). After reading Dr. Gregory Popcak’s book, The Life God Wants You to Have: Discovering the Divine Plan When Human Plans Fail and starting Holley Gerth’s book, You’re Made for a God-Sized Dream: Opening the Door to All God Has For You, I feel re-energized and confident to take some steps in faith. Take that, fear and doubt! A good rule-of-thumb that both authors point out to keep in mind when considering a dream, is to contemplate if it is helping others. (I highly, highly recommend both of these books by the way!)

What’s the project, you may ask? I don’t want to give too much away yet, but it has to do with music. And let’s just say, many things have been falling into place ever since I made up my mind to take this path that I feel called to pursue. Things like, Catholic artists contacting me to review their music, Adam being given a professional recording desk for free and getting a great deal on the recording gear that he needs and paying for it all from ebay profits (nothing out of our bank account)! Also, a Catholic father, who stumbled upon my blog, just reached out to us a few days ago about Adam possibly recording a song that was written about his beautiful 4-year-old daughter who died last year. (More to come on this family’s tragic and touching story at a later date.) There are some other things that have had the Holy Spirit’s “fingerprints” all over them, as well, and I’m absolutely overwhelmed with it all – in a good way!

I have a lot of work ahead of me, but I am looking for opportunities, not excuses! There’s just no way that I can’t not do it! I’ve waited a long time to truly find a passion and a niche. I think I’ve found it and the best thing is that it overlaps with my husband’s gifts and calling. I have no idea where exactly this is all going to go or what’s going to blossom, but with God leading us, I know it’s the best thing. I hope to be unveiling the start of this journey very soon!

It’s good to be back to writing again. Please fill me in on what you’ve been up to this summer! I have a lot of catching up to do and I’d love to hear from you!

Grace, Humility, and the Impossible

24 Feb

First of all, let me just say that I might be insane! I signed up earlier today to commit to blogging every day this week! What was I thinking?! I feel like I succumbed to peer-pressure by the other 246 Catholic bloggers who already linked up before me with Jennifer Fulwiler at ¬†Conversion Diary! I don’t want to be left out of the madness! There is something greatly unifying and inspiring just knowing that all of these other people are doing the same thing, though! Here’s to¬†7 Posts in 7 Days!

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William Wilberforce/Source: Wikipedia

This past Saturday, Adam and I were invited by a friend of mine and her husband to attend an interdenominational church service that was featuring Eric Metaxas as a guest speaker! (Bonus: Christopher Duffley, who is blind and autistic, sang at the beginning of the service and it was such a blessing to hear him!)

I have made no secret of the fact that I am a big fan of Eric Metaxas’ books and his message. (Check out my “read” list on Goodreads located in the right sidebar!) I heard him speak a year ago on Dietrich Bonhoeffer and this year he discussed William Wilberforce and his fight to abolish the slave trade. What really stuck with me during Metaxas’ talk, was how humble Wilberforce was and how he lovingly debated with his political opponents. Much of Metaxas’ speech was taken right out of his chapter on Wilberforce in 7 Men: And the Secret of Their Greatness (a book I recently started reading). On page 51, Metaxas writes:

Wilberforce understood the profoundly important concept that we are all sinners and all fall short of the glory of God. He hated the sin but loved the sinner, and he never demonized his opponents. He fought against them valiantly but always with grace, knowing that he had been part of the problem at one time, too, and knowing that if it weren’t for the grace of God, he would still be a part of the problem.

Metaxas likened this issue to the abortion debate in our culture today. He stated that “Jesus commanded us to love our enemies.” And, just as Metaxas pointed out that we are often guilty of doing, I find myself thinking that I’m on higher moral ground, especially when it comes to things like abortion. I tend to think “I can’t believe so-and-so is completely ignorant about that” and “I’m glad that I do more good than so-and-so”. The truth is, it is only because of God’s grace that we have the knowledge that we do. God lets us see certain truths when we are open to Him that others are blinded to because they reject Him.

How timely was this speech?! Imagine my excitement – and conviction – when I heard the Gospel reading on Sunday morning about loving our enemies (Matthew 5: 38-48)! The exact topic that Metaxas stressed in his talk the previous night! Trust me, my ears were open!

And if that wasn’t enough, I also read a post from Biltrix about the reading yesterday, titled When the Gospel Pokes. I can definitely relate!

All that is good is from God, and it is only because of His grace that we can have wisdom, love, knowledge, faith, and the ability to offer forgiveness. It would ALL be impossible without God’s grace.

Speaking of overcoming the seemingly impossible with grace, another important thing about Wilberforce is that he remembered that it was only with God’s strength that he could abolish slavery. Metaxas writes:

He first required a deep sense that the Lord had called him to these things –else he would have been overwhelmed, and the many setbacks would have been a great discouragement. But because he knew that God had indeed set these objects before him, he knew that the battle was God’s battle, not his. All he had to do was to be obedient to what God was asking him to do and to know that God brings the victory.

What a great reminder to each one of us! When we feel that God is calling us to something, we have to remember that He is in control and it is not up to us to make certain things happen. All that we can do is trust and obey. And pray – often!

For more about Wilberforce, you can read Eric Metaxas’ book Amazing Grace and/or watch the movie. The Kindle version is currently $3.79 on Amazon. Metaxas is also in the process of writing a book about inspirational women and a book about modern-day miracles. I can’t wait!

The Problem with Tolerance

28 Jan

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Source

Driving to work a few months ago, I noticed a purple bumper sticker that I hadn’t seen before that stated “Tolerate: Believe In It.” It was similar to the “Coexist” bumper stickers I’ve seen numerous times. The first thing that came to mind when I saw this was “emptiness.” Believe in IT? Huh?

Alright, alright. I know what people are getting at when they say “tolerance” – they mean acceptance. The first definition of tolerance, according to Merriam-Webster, is the “willingness to accept feelings, habits, or beliefs that are different from your own.” While this sounds like a decent and respectful idea, and everyone certainly deserves respect, it falls short. Here’s why:

1. Tolerance does not seek truth.
First of all, tolerance sounds to me a lot like “relativism,” defined as “the belief that different things are true, right, etc., for different people or at different times.” (Thanks, again, Merriam-Webster.) This is a big reason why the concept of tolerance leaves me empty. It signifies that there is no real truth; that “tolerance” is supposed to be some supreme social ideal that we are to bow down to so no one’s feelings are hurt. Catholic speaker and author, Matthew Kelly states, “A world without truth is a world without joy or meaning.”

Whoa! That’s a pretty powerful and wise statement. You can’t have joy or meaning in this life without truth! It’s not possible! Truth is the key to a meaningful and joy-filled life. Tolerance is not the path to truth, and, therefore, does not lead to true joy and meaning. Clearly, relativism and tolerance is a dead-end street to seeking purpose in one’s life.

2. Tolerance is isolating.
Contrary to popular belief, tolerance does not build community. Tolerance is lazy and selfish. It doesn’t really have concern for others, it just wants everybody to get along. You stay where you are and I’ll stay here and we’ll just do our thing. Cool?

Tolerance is also defined by Merriam-Webster as “the ability to accept, experience, or survive something harmful or unpleasant.” After reading that, how does tolerance still sound like something that makes a successful society? I tolerate an itchy sweater or a long wait at the doctor’s office, we shouldn’t have to tolerate people. Yes, personalities and ideals clash, but we are called to recognize the dignity in each person, no matter how hard it may be at times.

3. Tolerance is not love.
What’s missing from this tolerance picture, is LOVE! Love trumps tolerance – no contest. Let’s be real: Would you rather be tolerated or loved?

Love requires sacrifice, listening, care, respect, honesty. Love wants others to get to Heaven. Love puts others first and seeks truth. Love makes the impossible possible. Love does not have limits.

Many of us know the popular words in 1 Corinthians: 4-7 (NAB), but they are worth repeating here:

“Love is patient, love is kind. It is not jealous, [love] is not pompous, it is not inflated, it is not rude, it does not seek its own interests, it is not quick-tempered, it does not brood over injury, it does not rejoice over wrong-doing but rejoices with the truth. It bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things.”

One thing that love does not require, though, is that we agree with one another. Somehow this absurd lie has been perpetuated that to really love someone and want what’s best for them, you have to let them do whatever they want – and encourage it. To quote a recent tweet by Rick Warren, “It’s nonsense that you must agree with people to #love them. I often disagree with people I deeply love. I married one!”

And still, even while reading about the beauty of love, there are those who are fuming that I am dogging the false ideal of tolerance. How dare I have the gall to bring God, faith, and the Bible into this “debate”! But I say, how can I not, when the best this world can offer is tolerance, because the world denies God, and thus rejects love? There is no love without God. And this is precisely why there is a huge problem in our culture in this day and time. So many are settling for humanism over Christianity, this world over the next, relativism and tolerance over truth and love.

Brothers and sisters in Christ, let’s stand united in truth. Let’s continue to grow in love and live by the golden rule. Let’s choose joy and live with purpose each day. Let’s build each other up and use the gifts God has given each of us. Let’s embrace God’s grace and shine His light!

A life without truth, joy, community, and love is… empty. And I have a problem with that.

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I’m coming for you, 2014!

6 Jan

motivational quote from Ana Brandt

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I’m not usually one for New Year’s resolutions or big annual evaluations of my goals, but I am all about living purposefully this year!

Maybe the combination of turning 30 last month and facing the reality that my oldest daughter is starting Kindergarten this year has got me putting on my big girl pants. In fact, like many others (including those linking-up at Plain Grace), I even decided on a word to focus on for 2014 Рintentional!

I have been working hard on my PowerSheets, a goal-planning guide created by Lara Casey, to plan the first six months of the year. I cannot recommend this packet enough! It has motivated me so much and has really helped me put my goals into perspective in light of my vision- God’s vision- for my life! If you feel like you really want to prioritize and break things down into manageable bites, check them out! These can help you out no matter what your dreams are!

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My vision for 2014, and my life overall, includes:

-constantly seeking God’s will
-being thankful for his grace and blessings
-having a thriving marriage centered on Christ
-raising our two daughters to know, love, and serve Him
-using our talents to bring others to God and spread joy
-having a warm home where others can feel the love and joy of family and God
-reading, studying, and growing in wisdom and understanding

My five goals that I have chosen to put my energy into this year (and why) are:

1. Cultivate a marriage and family that continues to grow in God’s love, because that’s where true joy is and we want to shine His light and the goodness of family.

2. Create a financial plan/budget that works for our family, so that we can be good stewards of our money, save for our girls’ education, and prepare for emergencies, big purchases, and our future.

3. Create my online community, Faithful Dreamers, to encourage and inspire others to follow God’s will and dream big!

4. Be healthy, so that I can have more energy and feel good about how I’m taking care of myself for my family. I desperately need to squeeze in some exercise a few times each week!

5. Spend more time in prayer, so that I can hear God’s word, discern his plan for my life, and deepen my relationship with Jesus. This will greatly help me to be the best version of myself.

2014 is all about a year of action for me! I’m ready to put some ideas into motion and I want to do things with intention! For a peek at my Making Things Happen in 2014 vision board, click here!

~

What are you focusing on this year? Do you have a special word that is guiding and motivating you?

My Five Favorite Books of 2013

2 Jan

I know that I’ve been MIA most of the past month, but I was so busy with all that comes with preparing for Christmas that blogging just never really made it to the top of the priority list! It’s a new year, though, and I’m ready to get back to it!

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I’m joining Hallie and others at Moxie Wife¬†this week for a Five Favorites post of my top reads for the past year!

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The Four Signs of a Dynamic Catholic 
by Matthew Kelly

I love Matthew Kelly and this book is so practical and filled with so much truth. I love the prayer process that he outlines. Click here to check out some of my favorite quotes from the book!

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Running For My Life
by Lopez Lomong

This book is definitely one that alters your world-view. US Olympic Athlete Lopez Lomong’s journey from a refugee camp in Sudan to a life in America is so inspiring. God’s hand in his life is evident throughout the book and speaks to the truth that God has a purpose for each of us.

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One Thousand Gifts
by Ann Voskamp

This is such a beautifully written book! Voskamp definitely inspired me to be thankful for every tiny blessing that may typically be taken for granted or go unnoticed. It’s also a great reflection on the gift of grace.

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33 Days to Morning Glory
by Fr. Michael Gaitley

Along with many others who have gone through this retreat, I highly recommend this book to consecrate, or re-consecrate, yourself to Mary! Who better to shape and mold our hearts for Jesus than his mother?! (Thanks, mom, for giving it to me this past Mother’s Day!)

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My Life With the Saints
by Fr. James Martin

I really enjoyed reading how various saints impacted Fr. Martin. It really inspired me to want to grab a few biographies of saints and dig a little deeper! I already have a few on my “to-read” list, some of which he recommended in the book!

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I can’t wait to read so many more books in the coming months! Some of which include finishing Dietrich Bonhoeffer’s The Cost of Discipleship, Finding God’s Will For You by St. Francis de Sales, and Our Lady of Kibeho by Immaclee Ilibagiza.

What books impacted you this past year? What do you want to read in 2014?

Nativity Show & Tell

9 Dec

I’m excited about Kerry Todd’s link-up to keep us focused on the REASON for the season! I love Kerry’s¬† meaningful story behind her Nativity from Haiti, so be sure to check it out and share yours, too!

My Nativity scene is something new this year! I ran across this idea online in January and couldn’t wait to make it to display this Advent and Christmas season! It is made with three 7.5 x 7.5 inch glass blocks (available at Michaels or Hobby Lobby), wired ribbon, white lights, and custom black vinyl from Vinyl Gifts and More.

Here is the set…

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Who doesn’t love more lights?!

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The vinyl was pretty easy to apply! I had never done it before. I used my old driver’s license that I just renewed to help transfer and it worked really well.

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I used a strand of 35 lights that cost $2.99 at Hobby Lobby. I think 25-strand lights would work, as well. They cost $1.99.

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I tied a big bow on top and then tied a second ribbon and bow around that one to make it look fuller on top.

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I love the warm glow that this adds to my living room!

Hmmm… I wonder what some of my family and friends are getting for Christmas? ūüôā

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I hope you are having a joy-filled Advent! Have a great week!

5 Quotes about Gratitude

27 Nov

I’ve been coming across a lot of great quotes lately, especially in regards to gratitude. Since Thanksgiving is just a couple days away, I thought that I’d share five bits of wisdom about thankfulness!

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Source: Biblia.com

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Source: Plain Grace (free printable)

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PowerPoint Background using Colossians 2:6-7

Source: Heartlight.org

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Source: Plain Grace (free printable)

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Happy Thanksgiving, Friends!

I Am a Sinner

22 Nov

Satan wants me to be comfortable. He wants me to take my life for granted; to not notice the little blessings given to me each day. Satan wants me to think that I have it all together, because if this were true, why would I need to seek God?

The devil doesn’t want me to share my weaknesses; to admit that I am broken and need God’s grace.

Satan doesn’t want me to notice that I rarely pick up the Bible next to my bed or admit that I sometimes get too caught up in housework instead of spending time with my girls. Or that I hesitate to help others when it might inconvenience me too much. The devil doesn’t want me to acknowledge that I know he is behind any fear and resistance that I have been battling.

Why am I typing this stuff? Simply because I have read some amazing books by saintly authors lately. The Holy Spirit has been weaving some beautiful wisdom together in my mind. Hopefully, I can now articulate what has been knocking me over the head…

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“I am a sinner.” That’s the response that Pope Francis gave in his recent interview for America Magazine, when asked to describe who he was. These are the first words that came to mind of one of the holiest men on earth! What a humble example of who we are all called to be as Christians!

At the time that I read the aforementioned, A Big Heart Open to God article, I had just finished reading a section in Melody Green’s book, No Compromise: The Life Story of Keith Green, about her musician husband and how he started a “revival” in their community of new Christians. Keith had read a book by Charles Finney that discussed the concept of “fallow ground,” and this motivated him to confess his sins to his friends, ask for forgiveness, and turn grace into action on a whole new level. On page 269, Melody writes:

Keith explained, “Fallow ground is ground that was once tilled, but has since gotten hard and unusable. Before it can receive seed, it needs to be broken up and made soft again. Finney says to break up the fallow ground of our heart, we need to examine our motive, actions, and state of mind very carefully…” Keith quoted Finney again. “There are many professing Christians who are willing to do almost anything in religion that does not require self-denial. They are so far from realizing that self-denial is a condition of discipleship that they do not even know what it is!”

Keith was passionate about fighting hypocrisy among Christians and urged one another to move beyond “easy” grace.

For anyone out there familiar with Dietrich Bonhoeffer, you know that this is just like his term, “cheap grace.” In his book, The Cost of Discipleship, Bonhoeffer states, “Happy are they who know that discipleship simply means the life which springs from grace, and that grace simply means discipleship.”

Many Christians accept God’s gift of grace without accepting that we are also made to know Him, to love Him, and to serve Him while on this earth. We are made to know our brothers and sisters in Christ; to love them and to serve them. This requires action…discipleship…grace.

We are not to take our amazing free redeeming gift of salvation and keep it to ourselves. Matthew 5:13-16 states:

You are the salt of the earth. But if salt loses its taste, with what can it be seasoned? It is no longer good for anything but to be thrown out and trampled underfoot.

You are the light of the world. A city set on a mountain cannot be hidden.

Nor do they light a lamp and then put it under a bushel basket; it is set on a lampstand, where it gives light to all in the house.

Just so, your light must shine before others, that they may see your good deeds and glorify your heavenly Father.

“Getting saved” isn’t a one time thing, it is a a continuous accepting of Jesus by the choices that we make. Dr. Timothy Gray states in Walk the Walk: Following Christ as His Disciple, “Denial is always preceded by distance. Follow Jesus at a distance, and that discipleship will eventually end up in denial – denying Jesus.” He also states, “To not act on our belief – on our Christian thoughts – makes those Christian thoughts completely fruitless and vain.”

Can we ever do anything to earn grace? No, of course not. God freely gives us his love and mercy over and over again. Grace should inspire thankfulness – a heart overflowing with gratitude for something that we can never deserve. Thankfulness humbles us. Thankfulness is the key to joy.

I’ve been reading One Thousand Gifts by Ann Voskamp and her book is absolutely filled with numerous ways we receive grace and blessings. She says:

Thanksgiving creates abundance; and the miracle of multiplying happens when I give thanks- take the just one loaf, say it is enough, and give thanks- and He miraculously makes it more than enough.

When we have more than enough, we share. We share our joy, our blessings, our hope, so that others will seek Jesus, accept His grace, and follow Him. We are called to live radically and walk boldly in faith. Without God’s grace we are nothing, and this is precisely why we owe our lives to Him. This is why we should want the Lord to till our hardened soil and plant seeds of love in our hearts.

I am a sinner. A thankful sinner. A thankful sinner who wants to shine His light.

Catholic Woman’s Almanac No. 2

18 Nov

It’s taken me a little longer than I thought to get back to joining up with the ladies at Suscipio, but better late than never!

Thanking God for…
…my wonderful, amazing husband and little girls.

…my brother moving to Tennessee after living in California for 8 years.

…a job with flex days, so I can work from home a few times each month (like today)!

I am praying…
…for the grace to continue writing and articulating the truth that God reveals to me.

…for the Christians being persecuted throughout the world.

…for the success of my father-in-law’s new business.

I am pondering…
…what direction my blog will go in 2014.

I am reading…
No Compromise: The Life Story of Keith Green by Melody Green – Where do I begin with this one? There are so many parallels of Keith Green’s journey and where Adam is at in his own musical journey, that I will have to devote an entire post to it in the near future!

One Thousand Gifts: A Dare to Live Fully Right Where You Are by Ann Voskamp – I love what Ann has to say about grace and thanksgiving. It all has been tying in to other things that I’ve been reading, too.

The Cost of Discipleship by Dietrich Bonhoeffer – I’m still working on this one! I’ve been devoting a lot of time to No Compromise lately, but will be getting back to this once I finish up that one.

I am creating…
…Christmas gifts out of glass blocks, vinyl, ribbon, and lights!

I’m learning…
…to step into fear and be more vulnerable.

In the kitchen…
I had a very productive day today! I steamed sweet potatoes for my girls, made a big batch of homemade vegetable soup, baked some healthy fruit-and-veggie  muffins, and even made pumpkin gooey butter cake for a work potluck tomorrow!

Around the house…
We officially took our house off the market this past week, because I didn’t want to deal with showings over the holiday season! It has been such a stress reliever! We may or may not re-list it in the spring. We’ll see…

Look what I found…
PowerSheets¬†– I recently read about these awesome organizing/planning sheets on Anne’s blog, Modern Mrs. Darcy. I just ordered some to keep me on track for 2014. I’m really excited about them!

I am looking forward to…
…my sister-in-law and twin nephews coming to visit over Thanksgiving!

…Advent! I love Christmas-time, but I don’t listen to any Christmas music or put up decorations until after Thanksgiving! I can’t wait to snuggle with my girls and watch Christmas movies! I plan to enjoy the season as much as possible!

A favorite quote for today…

Stop living in fear and start living in faith. Fear paralyzes. Faith frees. -Crystal Paine, Money Saving Mom

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Good night and have a great week!

Fear & Resistance

14 Nov

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Blogging is freaking me out right now!

Yes, I’ve been busy and distracted the past few months with the house being on the market, car issues, and the upcoming holidays, but I’ve also felt a resistance that has been keeping me from completing half-finished posts. I’m a little bit at a crossroads of how to move forward.

I’m the type of person who wants things to be done right and if I can’t do whatever needs to be done as well as it needs to, I tend to give up and walk away. This is why I dabble in a lot of different things, but I’m not really a master of anything… There are a lot of things that I enjoy, but when it comes to working hard, sacrificing, and focusing on only one particular thing I tend to back off at some point. Maybe it’s because I don’t like to put pressure or stress on myself, I’m afraid of failing, or I don’t want to look like an idiot. If I’m being honest, it’s probably all of the above!

Trust me, I’m not trying to take myself too seriously with this blogging stuff, but I do want to contribute something that’s meaningful – something that matters. I love reading what my contemporaries have to say and feeling connected to their dreams and struggles. It is encouraging to be a part of a community full of young Christian wives and mothers trying to live their vocations the best that they can! I admire what so many other bloggers are doing. It’s easy, though, to start feeling inadequate and to question the importance of my little voice being heard among the crowd.

Something that I have come to realize recently is that I shouldn’t really be focusing so much on what kind of unique perspective I can offer, but just focusing on the truth that God is revealing to me. I have been doing a lot of great reading lately by saintly authors and so many ideas are linking together and overlapping so much that I know what I’m reading is true. There is something to be said about the cliches “great minds think alike” and “there is power in numbers!” The more we Christians speak the truth and share our faith journey, the more we may have an impact on others. The more that the messages we share are alike, the better!

Many of us are at different points in our relationship with Jesus. Some people are further along the journey and some are just starting to put things together, but there are those out there who are right there with us and something just might click and make sense in a way that others wouldn’t be able to do. I’m talking as much to myself as to anybody when I say, “Keep sharing your God-given wisdom and personal story!”

I know that this fear I’m dealing with right now of “not being good enough” is coming from Satan. I’m determined to resist the temptation to take the easy road and keep my blog on the back-burner. The devil wants me to keep my mouth shut and my fingers off the keyboard.

I know that what I write may not always be “Strunk and White”-approved or contain eloquent revelations, but I’m not going to let that stop me from offering encouragement and evangelizing. I also don’t want to cut ties with these amazing ladies who constantly inspire me and give me hope in this crazy, broken world (see blogroll below for some of my favorites).

Thanks to those of you who have checked in on A Dreamer’s Wife now-and-then. I appreciate your support and I plan to fit blogging into my life as much as I can in the upcoming months. I will be grateful for any prayers as I re-focus on my blog’s future and my Faithful Dreamers project (that I can’t wait to share one of these days). God bless and dream big!

Even the hairs of your head have all been counted. Do not be afraid. You are worth more than many sparrows. -Luke 12:7