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Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Endings

Just tell me how it ends, and then I can decide whether or not I want to watch it.
This is my kids.  They want to know, not waste any time. 
Yearning to know that the journey of it, the story and all of it's drama, won't end with disappointment.

Ever read the last page of a novel?
The reviews of a movie?
Fast-forwarded to the end......to know if it is worth a beginning?


Beginnings are scary still............even when the ending is revealed.  Even knowing that yes......you won't be left with all that disappointment. Why is that?  Is it the journey we are afraid of?  Knowing of the investment that will be asked of us?  Maybe even the sacrifice?

Isn't the journey where the lessons are learned.......where trust is broken and then put back together again.  Where fears are faced........and conquered.   Where risks are taken, disasters occur, tragedy strikes.  Yet courage is found, character is shaped and healing begins.

Our ladies ended our study of Philippians last week.  As I pondered the 3 months and all the discussion I came to this ..........


"To find joy-
Start with Thanksgiving.....which always precedes the miracle.
Realize we give thanks for all things– and in every circumstance
And this happens-
stress is relieved
time is slowed
moments are cherished and joy is found
Not in things or even circumstances— but in Christ!"

So to my kids and to all those yearning for how it ends.........
it ends with redemption, thanksgiving and joy!  Because Christ came down and we now know "God with Us".  He gave it all for us. 
But we are yet still sojourners ....... and this is our story.   All the moments.
Live it well my friends.......to the very ending. 

Thursday, December 15, 2011

Live

But the biggest mistake I made is the one that most of us make while doing this.
I did not live in the moment enough.
This is particularly clear now that the moment is gone, captured only in photographs. There is one picture of the three of them sitting in the grass on a quilt in the shadow of the swing set on a summer day, ages 6, 4 and 1. And I wish I could remember what we ate, and what we talked about, and how they sounded, and how they looked when they slept that night.
I wish I had not been in such a hurry to get on to the next thing: dinner, bath, book, bed.  I wish I had treasured the doing a little more and the getting it done a little less.” 
~Anna Quindlen
May we all find ourselves indulging not in the luxury of things but in the ever fleeting moments of our lives......engaging, being present, making eye contact, breathing and drinking it all in.
Before we know it,  this 15th day of December turns into 2012 .....
Make each day count and not be hurried through.
Enjoy your Christmastime and celebration of God With Us~

Thursday, December 1, 2011

Still

As December makes it's appearance, I find myself still basking in Thanksgiving.  A heart that has been transformed, tenderized.......and has found joy.  Choosing to take on the habit of thanksgiving earlier this year truly has been the best decision I have made - maybe ever.......I am a better wife, mom and friend.  My days no longer drag on me and when even a hint of it sneaks to rear it's ugly head, I begin to list.  List the gifts, the blessings...........and I remember whose I am.  And all that I am becoming.....
“Christian thanksgiving is the life of Christ in the heart —  transforming the disposition and the whole character.
Thanksgiving must be wrought into the life as a habit—before it can become a fixed and permanent quality.
An occasional burst of praise, in the midst of years of complaining, is not what is required. Songs on rare, sunshiny days; and no songs when skies are cloudy—will not make a life of gratitude. The heart must learn to sing always.
This lesson is learned only when it becomes a habit which nothing can weaken. We must persist in being thankful.
When we can see no reason for praise—we must believe in the divine love and goodness, and sing in the darkness.
Thanksgiving has attained its rightful place in us, only when it is part of all our days and dominates all our experiences.”
Did you get it?  I think I have read this quote a thousand times........still learning, trying to get it.

And so, the advent season is upon us.  May we still know God with us...  And be ever thankful.