Tuesday, June 17, 2014

Continuing to try........

These past days have seen a slow beginning of progress in my desire to slow down and simplify.  I still haven't figured out why my life feels so busy even now.  Stu is grown, married, and living in another state.  Our church commitment is once a week on Sunday and Thursday evenings for our small group.  There are no Bible studies, PTA meetings, parents needing care, or any other real pressing need.  Still, I feel like I seldom slow down enough to enjoy just doing exactly what I want.  My mind races ahead to what I have NOT done yet, what I need to do next, and what I would love to do if I ever had the time.  Seriously - I've got a problem, people.

I believe in seeing truth.  My truth is I am gone close to 60 hours each week for work.  Commuting 48 miles each way does add time away from home.  It's a choice I consciously made and continue to choose, but the time away is a real thing.  There is truth in the fact that in order to commute those 48 miles, I leave my house by 6:30am in morning which means I go to bed at night at 9pm.  Again, the truth is I don't have as much time at home (while I am awake) in the evenings as some folks.  Still, there should be more margin that there is.

There is also truth in the fact that I have become addicted to all things connected to my iphone and ipad.  I will look at facebook, Instagram, play games, and randomly look at other things rather than reading a book I love, studying God's Word, playing in my home, working in my flowers, or other things that bring me joy AND margin.  The sad part is I honestly don't know why.  I've prayed about it and asked God to help me change that habit.  I've prayed - but I have stubbornly refused to actually do anything about it - until now.  The truth is also that I can extremely stubborn.

I'm beginning to recognize the challenge really is mine and I am intentionally putting those "i" devices down.  I am reading the Mitford series and loving every single word.  I am going to buy some purty new flowers this weekend that include day lilies (which my daddy loved) and peonies (which my momma loved).  

Mack and I are also making a real effort to slow down our lives, our random spending, and see our blessings.  Last night we grilled chicken at home, and I CHOSE to eat outside. That is huge my friends.  Outside isn't a word I even use in the summer!  There are bugs, heat and that horrible word "humidity".  Humidity is of the devil.   But, we did it and I thoroughly enjoyed it. It took me about two minutes to try to make the table attractive with bright color because, well, that makes me happy too. Being outside also meant we were not sitting in front of the television, we didn't have our "i" devices handy, and we were forced to actually communicate.  It was awesome and so relaxing.  Baby steps but great ones.  

I read a quote many years ago that continues to grow me. "It's the journey that makes the man.  Getting to the top is an extra reward."  I am pretty sure my friend, Patti, made it up because you can't google it and find an author but still, the journey is an enjoyable one right now.

Monday, June 9, 2014

Learning to See

Good morning!

It's a brave new beginning of the week!  As I've mentioned to myself before, I have a tough time "hearing" from God at times as far as discerning His will for my life.  I know that He has given me a passion to love on and mentor young women - I just am not certain how I am supposed to accomplish this amazing gift of a passion.  I know how to encourage one on one, to do lunches and dinners together, to give hugs, and to just listen.  I know those are all part of the plan, but I don't know if there is more.  This blog is a one of the things I am uncertain of - is it another tool I can use?  I am seeking answers even now.

This past Friday, I had a returned graduation card/gift sitting on my desk as I tried to find out where I went wrong on the address.  I happened to look at the address label and immediately thought "I need to be grateful that I have a return address to print on a label."  So many do not or if they do, they barely have it - they don't know if they can pay the rent or the mortgage this month, if it is safe to go home to that address, or if they have the strength to meet the coldness they are greeted with.  In that moment, I glimpsed what I take for granted in every moment and I recognized that I am "learning to see."  I am learning to see the gifts God has abundantly given to me.  I walked through my front door - another gift.  I was walking into a home I LOVE.  I pulled the clothes out of the dryer (I HATE laundry!) and recognized how grateful I am to have an abundance of clothes to wash, dry, choose from, etc.  I moved cans around in the kitchen cabinet searching for the baked beans last night - so much food.......  You get it.  I know.  Still, I know that I get it for today but tomorrow I will get complacent again and I won't get it so this month I am going to try to focus on learning to see.  

Lest you think I spent the entire weekend being noble in thinking only about gifts, I also had a great weekend finding the most precious devotional and sunglasses that are both aviator style AND tortoise shell accented(!), baking a red and blue cake, and living life with framily which included some awesome chicken tenders and frozen yogurt.  Yes, I am that girl with the very exciting life. :))

Have a great week - I hope you are learning to see as well.