Thursday, October 28, 2010

I love these books!

Any of you who really knows me, knows that I LOVE books! I love to read! For pleasure, for educational purposes, to my children, other blogs... I just really enjoy reading. I'll give you a sneak peek into what I am reading right now :)

Really some GREAT stuff in all of these books! What I am really enjoying is working on accepting me just as I am... knowing what I am and what I am not is quite a freeing thing :)

Monday, October 25, 2010

Slow and Steady.....

Wednesday will be the end of my 31 day challenge to myself. I just couldn't wait until then to share some of the things I have been able to shed with you, my friends, my faithful readers!

The first thing I learned is be careful what you ask God to do in your life :) I mean this in a good way, but I need to tell you that when you ask God to show you something or to do something in your life, watch out for what comes your way! While most of this month has been really great things, some of the things God has shown me have been down right painful and I have had to do some much needed house cleaning and weeding, if you know what I mean ;) The funny thing is that when I started this little part of the journey (I'll write more on this later), part of my prayer time I was asking God to change others, to work on their hearts and attitudes toward me and how they treat me and my family. Why do I think that is funny? Because it really was me that God ended up working on... my heart, my attitude, my relationships. I have heard others say this before, but I really got to experience it first hand. Once I started focusing on Him and listening to what He was trying to tell me through His word, other people, blogs, sermons, etc... how very clear all my own sin and issues are becoming. Not that I ever have felt perfect or even deserving, but I also realized that I let people determine my worth and my value and I am now more aware that only can come for the One who loves me so perfectly! What also is happening is that by allowing my masks to fall, I have opened up new relationships and accountability partners that have come along side me and these have started new and exciting times and adventures for me, God is so good!

I wanted to start some kind of movement and exercise during these 31 days and challenged myself to do SOMETHING 30 minutes each day. I was pretty successful at this and made it most days with a couple of exceptions. All in all, happy with the start and looking into and forward to new endeavors :) I am not one who enjoys sweat or exercise but I am one to enjoy a fun time and playing with my boys. I also started a Zumba class and really LOVE it! It kicks my butt but I feel so good afterwards and noticed a difference after the first two classes :D I am excited to start some new strength training in the next week or so along with some harder cardio to get my heart pumping even more! Exercise does make me feel better :)

Last but not least, because it is actually the part of this 31 day shed that started it all was the weight.... I gave myself 31 days to lose 10lbs as my first goal. Last week, 10 days before I had marked on my calendar, I weighed in at 10lbs and 1 oz lighter than I was on Sept 27 when this all began! God is so cool, He gave me that 1 extra oz as a bonus and believe me I am counting it :)! I have more goals in my journal and in my mind and I will share them with you all from time to time. Not only is my physical weight lighter but with it is going some emotional weight and that feels so very good :)

Please continue to pray for me. This is a tricky and hard time for me... usually I get confident and comfortable and then I fall... instead of my dependence on Him, I get confident on my own and start slacking on my complete dependence on Him as I am right now. And I am committed to praying for you my friends! I don't know all that God is doing in your life, but I do know it is something. He tells us in Philippians 1:6 "He who began a good work in you is faithful to bring it to completion". Claim it and own it, He loves us too much to leave us like we are!


Saturday, October 16, 2010


Time, where and how do you spend it? Do you invest it in those most important to you or do you squander it away and take it for granted? How often do we just assume that people know that we are invested in them and care, when in fact they have no idea because we couldn't and didn't take the time to let them know? How many times do we politely ask people how they are but are really too busy to wait for the answer or even concentrate on what they have to say? Do you try to always listen when your kids are talking to you as only they can... non stop sometimes about things that are so trivial and small? When your husband leans in for a kiss or wants to hold your hand, or hold you in his arms for a few extra seconds, do you pull away because your dinner might be overdone, or the kids are calling your name? Have you settled into conversing with people only on social networks and email instead of making sure that you speak one on one, face to face?
People need to be invested in. We need to be touched both physically and emotionally. When we spend time with each other both of those needs are usually met. God designed us to be in touch with each other and checked in. I love that my kids love to spend time with me. They know that I love to spend time with them and that when we are together they almost always get my undivided attention. One of my twins will say to me, "I love that I get your whole face when I am talking to you". This means he knows I stop and look right at him when he has something important to say to me and he knows I am listening. I love that Frank knows he needs to spend time with me, check in and see how his wife is doing, not just the momma of his children. I have close friends who know that I need to be talked to, over coffee, lunch or a glass of wine. Friends who laugh with me and cry with me. This can't be done by technology alone but needs to have time and investment in the relationship.
Take time. Take time to ask how a friends is and wait for the answer. Take time to look at your child when they are talking to you, get down to their eye level and engage in the conversation. Take time to linger in your husbands kiss or hug a few extra seconds. Take time to have a cup of coffee or dinner with a friend. Take time... not one of us is guaranteed one more second on this earth.

Monday, October 11, 2010

Check up!

I promised that I would try my best to keep journaling about my progress through my 30 day shed and while I didn't get the chance last week to be on line here, I do have an old fashioned paper journal that I have been keeping daily. It is full of different thoughts and emotions I have day to day while I am on this month of shedding... I will spare you all of them, but will share some of them that I hope you will be able to relate to! Lots of changes are happening with me and sometimes I find I am taking a break and saying to myself, "hold on, take a deep breath, and let Him have it". More than once, the boys have asked me who I am talking to :) You see, God and I aren't just meeting up in the morning for devo time, we are getting close enough to have conversations at different times of the day too. Realizing and remembering that He wants me to come to Him, to cry out to Him, to sing to Him, is becoming more natural to me, more comfortable to me. He is jealous for me, He wants me to bring it to Him, not rely on my husband, or my friends to fix it, He wants to do it, He wants to hear it! In learning to do this, He is teaching me things and answering my requests and quieting my restless spirit. It isn't coming without work and discipline on my part though, but I do see a difference this time ( see previous posts about my struggles).

Ok, so 14 days in to the 30 day shed what have I started shedding? I am shedding my jealousy and discontentment of other women.... you see if you have insecurity issues like I do, you spend a lot of time comparing yourself to others especially women. I asked God to take that away from me so I could concentrate on myself and my relationships, especially with Him. He is doing just that for me, reminding me He made me for specific purposes, to be a CM director, to be Frank's wife, Kendra, Austin, Colby and Cam's momma....I am working on being content with all that and not playing in the comparison games. I am working on showing grace. Not just to those around me or those who mean the most to me, but actually to myself. I am my own worst critic, I bug myself and drive myself crazy with all my imperfections and short comings. I would never hold people as accountable as I tend to hold myself. This is helping with the weight too, bonus! I asked God to take away my focus on food. To help me learn to listen to my God given body when it is hungry and when it is full. To not focus on food but on the blessings around me and my relationship with Him. Its really happening! Where previously emotional highs and lows have resulted in food binges for celebration or for comfort, in these two weeks, I have been able to focus on the One who knows my emotions and wants to be my everything. Not easy for me, I am finding, but easier this time. I know it is Him and my approach to this... something is just so different this time.
While I hesitated to share all this in this post, because too many of you have heard me set these goals and have these conversations before, I promised honesty and accountability and this is the real two weeks I have had. My accountability partner and a couple of close friends and I have had good laughs about these changes and other "girl" talks and these too are part of the shed, losing the masks and letting others see the real me. Intimidating and so hard for me, but I am also learning very necessary too. By His grace, I am on a good track and really enjoying these last two weeks! God can do this change, and take me along for the ride and I am loving it so far. Even the yucky, look at yourself, moments have become very cleansing and freeing and I love the after effect.
So, dear readers and friends, continue to pray for me and I will pray for you! I have a long way to go, but I am two weeks closer to the goal and way closer to the Creator. Happy dancing myself around here, 7.7lbs lighter :)

Monday, October 4, 2010

I saw God this week....

This week I was looking for God... purposely looking for Him around me and in my life. This is where I found Him...

~ On my walk, the colors in the leaves and the quiet whisper in the wind
~ My son's face when he was hurting from a fall out of the tree
~ When my home-schooled children burst out singing praise and worship songs while doing their school work
~ My one on one time with Him in the mornings, He showed this seasoned Christian woman some new and exciting things this week!
~ My Ipod
~ My friends, who showed unconditional love and genuine concern to me
~ My daughter's laughter
~ In the mirror
~ My husband who disciplined one of our children, apologized later for his shortcomings, and pulled him into a hug
~ The 100+ kids who call me Ms. Janet
~ In the darkest hours before sleep and first wake up
~Coffee :)
~ A brief but meaningful conversation with a fellow struggler
~ Blogs
~ My lover's unconditional love and admiration for me

He's there... God... he's there just waiting for you to see Him and feel Him. Look for Him on purpose this week, seek Him out. He wants you to!