Monthly Archives: May 2015

ACT by not waiting for rainbows

Sunday when I walked out of work there was a rainbow that spanned the sky. I so needed that rainbow just to remind me of God’s promises to protect. Unlike many rainbows, that seem to fade before I even get my camera out, this rainbow almost the whole way home. I may go around one corner and think it was gone, but as soon as I went around the next one and my vision was adjusted just a little bit, it was there again.   The whole time I was thinking thank you Lord for the promise… Some things came to mind with that rainbow since that day.

  1. It was there the whole time, it was my vision that needed adjusted.   That happens to with beautiful sunsets, sunrises, etc. They are always there. Sometimes they seem closer based on where I am located (on the mountain) and sometimes further away (in the valley). It is just like God — HE is always there. My closeness to Him is based on where I AM, not where He is. Scripture reinforces He is the same yesterday, today, and tomorrow. He NEVER moves. It is me that creates the distance. Just like the prodigal son. The dad never left, he stayed in the same home praying for his son return. His son is the one who moved. But, when the son returned, the father opened wide His arms. So does the Heavenly Father…. I just have to get close enough to feel him, hear him, see him….
  2. I was holding onto that rainbow as a reminder of His promise. I have been going through some “stuff” outside of my control (hate that!). At times not sure God heard my prayers, yet in reality I may not said them out loud. Well because I hate to let go for a variety of reasons / excuses. I realize that scriptures say He knows my words and thought before they are said and even if they are never said. But, He wants to her me come to Him. Just as I want my children to come to me and just talk. I want to know their heart without using my mother E.S.P. skills. Thankfully, He knew what I needed without me saying a word… I never said Lord give me a sign. To be honest, there have been times that I have required BILLBOARDS to get my attention. I didn’t want that kind of sign, so I am cautious in asking! Funny how I even want to control the sign He sends me – LOL!
  3. The irony of the rainbow is that it has to rain/storm to make it happen. Yet, I want a sign from God without wanting to go through the storm to get it I want the sign to come easy. Would love a big arrow saying that way. A sign without drama, without trials, without choices, etc. In reality, I want easy signs without the work / pain / suffering to get me there. Honestly some of the most powerful things I have learned were after a trying times in life. Scriptures says that suffering creates perseverance (Romans 5:3-4). In my impatience I just want the reward / the promise / the rainbow but without all the journey to get there! I want the sign today… please don’t make me wait. Last week at Ladies tea we talked about how Sarai was so wanting a child NOW that she sent her husband to sleep with a maidservant. Yes a child was conceived, but so were many problems. Had she just waited, her time did come.  How many times am I like her, wanting it now, instead of waiting for His time?!?!
  4. Why did I wait for the rainbow to feel I had a promise from Him when every day my Bible waits to be opened. Full of love letters from Christ to ME! Full of promised from Christ to me. I can rattle off some scripture but does it soak in my soul?   Here are the ones I say I cling to, but how many times does it truly absorb?
  • I know the plans I have for you. Plans to prosper you, not harm you. Plans to give you a hope and a future. – Jeremiah 29:11
  • Every morning Christ gives me a new serving of mercies – Lamentations 3:23 (and guess what He will give more if I need it.)
  • His thoughts are not my thoughts – His ways are not my ways – They are beyond comprehension (i.e. Sheri interpretation – He can see the BIG picture, I must trust Him).
  • BE STILL and know that I am God. Psalms 43:10 (my problem is being STILL and letting HIM be God).
  • The Lord will fight for me; I need only to BE STILL – Exodus 14:14 (my interpretation – is get out of HIS way and let Him be God).
  • Come to me all who are weary and burdened and I will give you rest. Matthew 11; 28 (I have to go and give it to Him instead of carrying it around and whining).
  • He gives power to the weak, strength to powerless. . Those that trust in the Lord will renew their strength… Isaiah 40:30 (He is my source of power – just like a light switch all I have to do is turn to it).
  • I can do all things through Christ who gives me strength – Philippians 4:13 (I can say it but do I believe it / practice it?)
  • He gives a gift – peace of mind and heart. A peace the world cannot give. So don’t be troubled or afraid. John 14:27 (so why do I look for peace everywhere else?_)
  • Look at the sparrows and God takes care of them and is concerned for them – how much more does He care for me? Mathew 10:31 (I often think of this in winter of how the birds survive the cold, the storms, and provides for the bird… I also think of the song – His eye is on the sparrow – so I know he watches me).
  • There are HUNDREDS more promises… these are just a few that I can recite. No matter what I am facing – physical, emotional, mental, work, home, friendships, enemies, etc… HE KNOWS! There are times there are times I need to make the scripture personal with my name… Sometimes I need to make my own paraphrase (like instead of saying Be Still and know that I am God – I should say SHUT UP SHERI and get out of HIS way!)

Thank you Lord for the beautiful rainbow. A reminder on a day I needed it so. Thank you for reminding me to look up and keep my perspective on YOU. But help me not to just wait to chase rainbows, but to ACT by resting in your promised every day!

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ACT by connecting

PART 2: In my last blog I wrote about abandonment and holes in the soul. But there is hope with CONNECTIONS. (of note: Connections will go on my list of possible words for next year)!

After listening to the Bible Study, and the many books I had been listening too, it became quite obvious that my connections to people had been broken. I had filled my life with many things other than people. Also, in the day of technology, it is easy to replace FACEBOOK as a way of “connecting” versus FACE-to-FACE! There is not much better for a rough day or a moment of encouragement than to hear a friends voice on the phone or better yet sit across the table talking. Friends can just pick up where we left off.

One of the other things mentioned by my friend, Johnetta, at the study was to ensure our connections are HEALTHY. She mentioned on about Facebook, and how she had to assess if the relationships / “friends” were healthy. She encouraged us to look at that. I had already hid some from my daily view based on their language choices or picture postings. But I assessed the number of “friends” that drained me just by negativity and hid those as well from my daily view. I have them in a separate group so I can periodically check on them and say an extra prayer. However, their negativity does not feed into me daily anymore.

Well, I have also been checking some other connections… and I have some major re-networking to do…

Generally speaking, my immediate family pays for when I disconnect when I fill my time and energy without putting them as the priority. Jim takes the hardest hit. Yes, I will do the daily texts to check in on his day, and we may talk a little at home. But, we are generally a couple of few words. I remember the days, I would do the little things to let him know I loved him, and now it is easier to be a little snarky than pour into him. I am still the night owl and he is the early bird, so often our schedules do not connect. I work weekends and he is off. I think as parents, our marriages are often the first disconnection. As a working mom, I pour what I have into our children. My husband is definitely someone I need to make sure the connection is secure. This past weekend we spent in Gettysburg connecting as a family. As we drove the different routes, we talked about things he wanted to do. I wrote them down because I truly care, and if I don’t write it I won’t remember.   So, now armed with a few things on his “bucket list”, I can connect by helping them to happen. Sometimes, it requires me going outside of my comfort zone to connect.

As a mom, overall I think I have a strong connection. We talk just about everything and I am physically here every day. I am blessed to work from home 3 of 4 days, but I am hidden away in my space. When I am “off” work, I generally find myself pouring into my to do list. Dishes, laundry, projects, etc… A perfect example, which hurts to even admit, happened recently.  Sam’s birthday is on a Saturday in June. (remember, I have worked every weekend for years, and hate to take it off and ask others to work, and was limited to the weekends I could request). So, I have Friday off and asked Sam if we could celebrate a day early. He hesitated, but then said okay. I really thought it was “okay” with him until I overheard him talking to his speech therapist. He told her that we were celebrating his birthday a day early because I was too busy with work (OUCH!). I was crushed. I waited till later and asked him if he was really okay with celebrating a day early (I thought he would be excited to go shopping early). He said, could you just tell work it is a really important day to celebrate and ask if I could have off. Honestly, there would have been a day I would have still tried to negotiate with him.   This time, I said absolutely and just took the day off. When Mary asked me to sit at the table while she did school, I sat and worked on things. When Sam asks me to keep him company while he takes a bath, I say yes. I am working on deepening the connections, but it is definitely a work in progress.

I definitely could work on my connection with my Heavenly Father. I am working on this too. I now pause to watch the sunrise, the sunset, the flowers, etc… his box full of crayons leaves me in awe! There would have been a day I would have been too busy to notice.   I will be honest, I have to write down people to pray for, or set my alarm to remember. My mind just isn’t what it used to be. If I wait till night time, I will be honest, I will fall asleep (do you know how many times I start a grateful list and it never gets posted because I fall asleep.). My grateful list is like my thank you / praise to God. I have been doing it for a few years and I can tell you, when I go days without a list, I am likely going days without connecting with God. I have friends who are so dedicated of first thing in the morning, but I struggle with mornings. I have a list of reasons I could provide. Part of my problem use to be I had an expectation that I would do a certain length of time, and when one day fell short, it was like my ongoing diets… I fell off the bandwagon and didn’t get back on. Now, I do my praise/grateful list, routinely search for scriptures for a friend, listen to sermons online by downloading to my phone, and have loaded my Nano with all Christian music. I need to pour in Christ in my life, even if just for 15 minutes. On the video at Bible Study they talked about how the prodigal son had wondered, but when he returned His father reconnected with Him. Christ does that with me, every time I stray and return He welcomes me back ready to reconnect. Christ never moves… it is me. The connection is always there, I just have to move closer.

I have really been really working on what I describe as “following my gut and not my schedule!” Yes, I have certain commitments in my calendar, but it is imperative that I fill the gaps between obligations with PEOPLE.   Life is so busy and rushed, but if I can’t pause to remember people, then I need to re-evaluate my connections! I need to spend more time with Christ, write more notes, have more meals (or desserts) with friends, dates with my husband, visits with family, say extra prayers because just as electrical connections, they give me energy and renew me, unlike my ever ending to-do list that leaves me defeated.

When we get too caught up in the busyness of the world, we lose connection with one another – and ourselves. – Jack Komfield