Monthly Archives: August 2015

Focus on good things.

Focus on good things.I have this tendency to constantly be aware of all the bad things in my life..  things that need to get done, need fixing, need paying off, need changed, need cleaning, or need bought. All these needs. All the stress. All the frustrations, just waiting there in that overflowing mailbox. All the fears, over there on Facebook. All the tension and worry, there in the news. All the unrest, there waiting in my house of half-finished projects. All the failures, in my housework, child-training and marriage. All the ‘You’re not good enough!‘, shouting at me from every corner of life.

It’s enough to make me lie in bed and cry myself to sleep with big fat tears. Tears of failure, frustration, weariness and sadness. Tears mixed with sadness for losses, physical pain and emotional hurts. And the longer I focus on these things, the harder I cry, and the more I want to escape from it all.

“Let’s go to Hawaii!” “Wouldn’t it be fun to visit DC again?!” “Oh, I found some cute cabins where we can have a relaxing vacation!”

Oh yes. I would love to run away from LIFE. I would love to hide away in a mountain cabin, or let the warm Hawaii sun burn the problems away. But that wouldn’t solve anything, would it? You  know, it sounds silly to even say such things…  writing them down sounds absurd! We all know that a vacation solves nothing, and you just come home wearier than you left! 😉 (Believe me – I am all in favor of a good vacation! But not as an ‘escape’.)

There is something you can do to clear your mind of all the worries and endless tension; Focus on the good. Purpose to reject worry and fear. It is only through the power of Christ that we can rise above LIFE and live in peace and joy. I am not advocating some sort of yoga or mind-tricks. This is real! This is how we take control of our minds.
Focus on what is good; stop focusing on bad things. This is Scripture.

 Finally, brothers and sisters, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable—if anything is excellent or praiseworthy—think about such things.                          Philippians 4:8

“Set your affection on things above, not on things on the earth.” Colossians 3:2

This takes self-discipline. You have to repeatedly stop focusing on bad things, and purposely replace those thoughts with good thoughts. This is one of the reasons I need to read Scripture daily; to keep my mind on things above. To have lots of good things to think about! If you struggle with focusing on bad things, here are a couple tips on keeping your mind in a good place:

1. Read the Bible daily. It is your spiritual food, after all. You wouldn’t starve your body for days or weeks – nor should you starve your spirit! No wonder you are so weak.

2. Try to remember hymns and spiritual songs. Sing as you work! Sing as you drive. Sing along to the radio. It helps you focus on Heavenly things.

3. Make a plan for reaching out to others. It always helps me tremendously to remember that my lot in life is not the worst-case scenario. Yours likely isn’t either! Text, call, email…write a letter, for goodness sake! But in your reaching out, don’t just use it as a vent for your problems. Ask them how their week is going. How can you ease their load? Community. This is sorely lacking, and you could be the one to start. :)

How do you set your mind on things above?

Riding the neighbors’ horse…

Note: not the horse from the story.

Note: not the horse from the story.

When I was a kid, I was your typical horse-crazy little girl. My dad was a logger, and we didn’t have horses, so I would ride any horse I had the chance to ride. Now, I had very little practical knowledge of horses, but I’d read plenty of horsey books and felt quite able to take on anything!

One time I was given the opportunity to ride some Haflinger ponies that were just 2 miles down the road. Trained to ride, but lazy and stubborn from lack of use – they were offered to me to ride as much as I liked. Wow! What a gift to a horse-crazy girl!

They were a pain to catch. I had to lure them (and all their buddies) to the barn with grain. Then when I finally caught one, I spent half my time kicking it in the ribs to make it walk. They were such a pain, I wonder at my own tenacity!

Well, one day I had a extra hard time catching that horse. Once I finally got it caught, saddled and cinched up good, I got on and we stepped out. This barn had a circle drive in front of it, flanked on 3 sides by the horse pasture, one side was the barns and one side was the dirt road.
All was fine for about 5 strides – till Mr. Haflinger decided he wasn’t having any more of this riding business! I kicked him lightly in the ribs, but instead of walking out onto the dirt road as usual, he began to run! Around and around that circle he galloped, as I clung desperately to the saddle horn and prayed I wouldn’t fall off!

…read the rest of the story over at Cavvy Savvy.

Understanding the love of God.

Understanding Gods loveYou failed again. You blew it. You sinned. You didn’t want to sin – but you did. The Enemy got the upper hand. And now you feel like a failure. Because you know you are. You wonder if God can forgive you again. You feel like surely He doesn’t even like you anymore. I mean, you mess up so often! How could a just and holy God still want to be with you? to be your friend?

“…for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God, being justified as a gift by His grace through the redemption which is in Christ Jesus…” Romans 3:23-24

Let me tell you something. I love my children. Fiercely. Even when they are disobedient. Even when they have bad attitudes or act wrongly. I would die for them. More than that; I would endure starvation, deprivation, and torture, if it meant sparing my precious little ones. I would offer myself as a sacrifice – all because of my human, instinctual, yet steely-strong love for my children. And I am quite certain you, as a parent, would do the same.

Now think about God. Not a scary old man, not a lightening-hurling ogre, but God your Father. The same God who created the world with a word – He loves you.

He loves you. He loves you. Just like a mother loves her child with every fiber of her being – so God loves you. He would allow Himself to be tortured and killed, if it meant you, His child, could be saved!

He did that, you know. He sent His Son, Jesus, to be beaten, wrongly accused, spit on, tortured beyond imagination, and finally killed, to spare you from Death.
Only – you have a choice. You will still die if you ignore His offer of Life. But you can be saved! Your torturers and accusers have been paid. They have collected the Ransom already. You are free to go. But only if you believe.
“For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him shall not perish, but have eternal life.” John 3:16

And if you are already saved, you can rest in the knowledge that God loves you just as fiercely and protectively as any mother loves her child. God loves you just like that! Try to understand it. Try to wrap your mind around the fact that God your Father loves you in the same way you love your child. I would tell you He loves you more – because He does – but that is more than I can wrap my mind around, quite frankly. To think that my Father loves me as much as I love my child, is almost beyond my small understanding. I have been mulling it over lately. I urge you to do the same. Think how secure we will become, once we grasp this truth.

“…and to know the love of Christ which surpasses knowledge, that you may be filled up to all the fullness of God.” Ephesians 3:19

“…How often I wanted to gather your children together, the way a hen gathers her chicks under her wings, and you were unwilling.” Matthew 23:37b

“But God demonstrates His own love toward us, in that while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us.”Romans 5:8

Summer afternoon.

wyoming prairie

Yesterday I followed my husband out through the prairie… through fields of summer grass roasting in the sun, and smelling warm and sweet. The birds darted and swooped over the prairie, the clouds drifted overhead and the sun shone warmly down.

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One of the wells needed fixing, and my man was there to get ‘er done… except the well-truck wouldn’t start, so Cliff hooked a chain to his truck, and I pulled the well-truck a little bit till it started. :) 
imageimageI snapped a few pics with my cell phone, since it was all I had with me.
I sat in the hot sun and enjoyed the warm wind on my face, and pondered life. You know – LIFE. All the things that happen to us – all the things we do to others… what really matters and why do we get so caught up in minuscule ‘problems’.

I really believe the most important thing is that we love God with all our heart, soul, and mind. Luke 10:27

And that we are loving and kind to each other. Luke 10:27

I really don’t think the brand of your cell phone or a lion in Africa or the size of your house or whether you like the city or the country really matter very much. I want to know: Do you know my Jesus? And do you obey His Words? 

That’s what really matters, to me.

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