James 1:2-4

Don’t run from tests and hardships, brothers and sisters. As difficult as they are, you will ultimately find joy in them; if you embrace them, your faith will blossom under pressure and teach you true patience as you endure. And true patience brought on by endurance will equip you to complete the long journeyand cross the finish line—mature, complete, and wanting nothing. James 1:2-4D

Sunday, May 12, 2013

A Revelation of the Mothering Kind

We just celebrated Mother's Day 2013 and I've had a bit of a revelation about my Mothering and Mothers in general that I wanted to share.  I've been looking at all the posts on Facebook the last few days about mothering and many shared about the reality of how hard and demanding it can be.  I've been listening intently to what my friends have been saying about their own mothering issues and also contemplating my own mothering experience so far.

Being a Mom is rewarding but honestly it is a really hard job. Some how I must of missed that memo!  For most of the seventeen years I've been a Mom, I kind of believed a lie that I think other Mom's do sometimes also, that I just wasn't a very good Mom, that I was a failure and I was messing my kids up big time. People would tell me I was a good Mom, but deep down inside I just didn't believe it.  With all the struggles I've had with my parenting, let's face it three children all diagnosed with some form of identifiable developmental disability, I've often felt defeated and deflated and honestly, disappointed.  I guess the truth is I have always felt kind of inadequate for the job.  I felt like I was some how letting my kids down.  I now see that perhaps I took on a false sense of responsibility way beyond the call of Motherhood.  I often blamed myself for my kids struggles and failures.  Turns out I've found that a lot of Mom's do this.  We base our self worth on how well or not well our kids are doing in school, whether they have the right friends, we worry about things we shouldn't instead of just letting them be who they were created to be. We forget that the best way for anyone to learn is through natural consequences and that its okay if they mess up or don't get it right all the time.  They are just being human and doing the best that they can.

Recently, a friend of mine was making some suggestions to me about a few things with my kids and I found myself getting all defensive and upset, like I had to defend why my kids are the way they are.  He said to me, "Laura, its not your fault you know?"  I said. "Huh?"  He said, "It's not your fault, your doing the best that you can, it's not your fault."  My first response inside my head was, "Well of course it is, whose else is it, I'm their Mother!"  He said , "Laura,  repeat after me, it's not my fault."  With tears rolling down my cheeks, I half heartily muttered, "It's not my fault."  He made me repeat it three more times, and the last time he said, "Now say it like you mean it."  Wow!  In that moment in time something shifted in my spirit.  I realized I was carrying a lot of  unjustified guilt because I wasn't a "perfect" Mom and didn't have "perfect" kids.      

I've come to the realization that yes our children are some what a product of our parenting, especially when they are little, and that for the most part I've done a really good job with them, in fact I've gone over and above many times.  I've done the best I could.  There is no such thing as perfect and there are many things that just aren't in our control as parents.  They are who they are and they are going to say and do what they do because they are unique and special people, existing for a purpose, created just as God made them.  The Bible says in Psalm 139:13-16  For You formed my inward parts; You covered me in my mother’s womb. I will praise You, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made; Marvelous are Your works, And that my soul knows very well. My frame was not hidden from You, When I was made in secret,  And skillfully wrought in the lowest parts of the earth.  Your eyes saw my substance, being yet unformed.  And in Your book they all were written, The days fashioned for me,  When as yet there were none of them.

Here's the truth!  Long before you and I even became the parents of our children God was thinking about them and planning a life for them.  Who they would be, how they would carry out their days.  Amazing!  Our job really as Mom's is easy,  we just need to love them, teach them and be their guide along the way as they travel the path to adult hood.  And even once they are grown we still have a part to play, maybe not in such an in your face kind of way, but they will always be our children.  

Before my three children were born I miscarried a child at 16 weeks.  It was referred to as a missed abortion.  I remember as a first time Mom how much I hated that term.  The baby had died inside of me around 14 weeks and did not abort on it own.  Hence the term, but I still hated it.  I didn't want to "abort" this baby.  How terribly sad that period in my life was, and how much I longed for understanding and purpose for why this had happened to me.  During my time of grieving for this little one that I never got to hold, I came across a poem written by the philosopher and poet Kahlil Gibran titled On Children.  

Your children are not your children.
They are the sons and daughters of Life's longing for itself.
They come through you but not from you,
And though they are with you yet they belong not to you.
You may give them your love but not your thoughts,
For they have their own thoughts.
You may house their bodies but not their souls,
For their souls dwell in the house of tomorrow,
which you cannot visit, not even in your dreams.
You may strive to be like them,
but seek not to make them like you.
For life goes not backward nor tarries with yesterday.
You are the bows from which your children
as living arrows are sent forth.
The archer sees the mark upon the path of the infinite,
and He bends you with His might
that His arrows may go swift and far.
Let your bending in the archer's hand be for gladness;
For even as He loves the arrow that flies,
so He loves also the bow that is stable.

I remember my ah-ha moment back then, that our children don't really belong to us, they are born through us and our job is to just love and appreciate them for what and who they are.  To guide and direct but also to bend a little as the poem suggests, so your own wants and desires don't get in the way with their purpose and potential.  Even that little tiny bean of a person growing inside of me who only lived for 16 weeks had a purpose.  I know for me it was the first time I really experienced grief and remember experiencing huge spiritual growth because of that experience.  It also brought my ex-husband and I closer and allowed us to experience death together.  As painful as losing that baby was, his short life served a great purpose, and some purpose that I may not even fully comprehend yet.

I posted the following on my Facebook page today:  There's no way to be a perfect mother but a million ways to be a good Mother.  I get it!  I pray you do too!  May you continue to experience rich blessings along your pathway.




A Revelation of the Mothering Kind

We just celebrated Mother's Day 2013 and I've had a bit of a revelation about my Mothering and Mothers in general that I wanted to share.  I've been looking at all the posts on Facebook the last few days about mothering and many shared about the reality of how hard and demanding it can be.  I've been listening intently to what my friends have been saying about their own mothering issues and also contemplating my own mothering experience so far.

Being a Mom is rewarding but honestly it is a really hard job. Some how I must of missed that memo!  For most of the seventeen years I've been a Mom, I kind of believed a lie that I think other Mom's do sometimes also, that I just wasn't a very good Mom, that I was a failure and I was messing my kids up big time. People would tell me I was a good Mom, but deep down inside I just didn't believe it.  With all the struggles I've had with my parenting, let's face it three children all diagnosed with some form of identifiable developmental disability, I've often felt defeated and deflated and honestly, disappointed.  I guess the truth is I have always felt kind of inadequate for the job.  I felt like I was some how letting my kids down.  I now see that perhaps I took on a false sense of responsibility way beyond the call of Motherhood.  I often blamed myself for my kids struggles and failures.  Turns out I've found that a lot of Mom's do this.  We base our self worth on how well or not well our kids are doing in school, whether they have the right friends, we worry about things we shouldn't instead of just letting them be who they were created to be. We forget that the best way for anyone to learn is through natural consequences and that its okay if they mess up or don't get it right all the time.  They are just being human and doing the best that they can.

Recently, a friend of mine was making some suggestions to me about a few things with my kids and I found myself getting all defensive and upset, like I had to defend why my kids are the way they are.  He said to me, "Laura, its not your fault you know?"  I said. "Huh?"  He said, "It's not your fault, your doing the best that you can, it's not your fault."  My first response inside my head was, "Well of course it is, whose else is it, I'm their Mother!"  He said , "Laura,  repeat after me, it's not my fault."  With tears rolling down my cheeks, I half heartily muttered, "It's not my fault."  He made me repeat it three more times, and the last time he said, "Now say it like you mean it."  Wow!  In that moment in time something shifted in my spirit.  I realized I was carrying a lot of  unjustified guilt because I wasn't a "perfect" Mom and didn't have "perfect" kids.      

I've come to the realization that yes our children are some what a product of our parenting, especially when they are little, and that for the most part I've done a really good job with them, in fact I've gone over and above many times.  I've done the best I could.  There is no such thing as perfect and there are many things that just aren't in our control as parents.  They are who they are and they are going to say and do what they do because they are unique and special people, existing for a purpose, created just as God made them.  The Bible says in Psalm 139:13-16  For You formed my inward parts; You covered me in my mother’s womb. I will praise You, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made; Marvelous are Your works, And that my soul knows very well. My frame was not hidden from You, When I was made in secret,  And skillfully wrought in the lowest parts of the earth.  Your eyes saw my substance, being yet unformed.  And in Your book they all were written, The days fashioned for me,  When as yet there were none of them.

Here's the truth!  Long before you and I even became the parents of our children God was thinking about them and planning a life for them.  Who they would be, how they would carry out their days.  Amazing!  Our job really as Mom's is easy,  we just need to love them, teach them and be their guide along the way as they travel the path to adult hood.  And even once they are grown we still have a part to play, maybe not in such an in your face kind of way, but they will always be our children.  

Before my three children were born I miscarried a child at 16 weeks.  It was referred to as a missed abortion.  I remember as a first time Mom how much I hated that term.  The baby had died inside of me around 14 weeks and did not abort on it own.  Hence the term, but I still hated it.  I didn't want to "abort" this baby.  How terribly sad that period in my life was, and how much I longed for understanding and purpose for why this had happened to me.  During my time of grieving for this little one that I never got to hold, I came across a poem written by the philosopher and poet Kahlil Gibran titled On Children.  

Your children are not your children.
They are the sons and daughters of Life's longing for itself.
They come through you but not from you,
And though they are with you yet they belong not to you.
You may give them your love but not your thoughts,
For they have their own thoughts.
You may house their bodies but not their souls,
For their souls dwell in the house of tomorrow,
which you cannot visit, not even in your dreams.
You may strive to be like them,
but seek not to make them like you.
For life goes not backward nor tarries with yesterday.
You are the bows from which your children
as living arrows are sent forth.
The archer sees the mark upon the path of the infinite,
and He bends you with His might
that His arrows may go swift and far.
Let your bending in the archer's hand be for gladness;
For even as He loves the arrow that flies,
so He loves also the bow that is stable.

I remember my ah-ha moment back then, that our children don't really belong to us, they are born through us and our job is to just love and appreciate them for what and who they are.  To guide and direct but also to bend a little as the poem suggests, so your own wants and desires don't get in the way with their purpose and potential.  Even that little tiny bean of a person growing inside of me who only lived for 16 weeks had a purpose.  I know for me it was the first time I really experienced grief and remember experiencing huge spiritual growth because of that experience.  It also brought my ex-husband and I closer and allowed us to experience death together.  As painful as losing that baby was, his short life served a great purpose, and some purpose that I may not even fully comprehend yet.

I posted the following on my Facebook page today:  There's no way to be a perfect mother but a million ways to be a good Mother.  I get it!  I pray you do too!  May you continue to experience rich blessings along your pathway.




Saturday, April 6, 2013

The Meaning of Success

For those of you who know me well, you know that I am employed as a Regional Coordinator for an organization that teaches kids about business and financial literacy.  One of the programs we teach looks at what success is and what it will take for a Jr. High student to achieve success in the future.  In the student workbook they define success this way:  "Success happens when you realize a dream you have imagined or take steps to accomplish the goals you plan to achieve."  This is a very good program and teaches young people some valuable things.  I've recently started to see success in a whole new way and agree more with the second half of that statement then the first and can't wait to share my new found wisdom next time I teach this program in a school.  

For the past six months I have been taking part in a weight loss program through my local church.  In one of my final lessons in the four book cirriculum that I have been studying it talked about success and how success is not about reaching a particular goal but about continuing on in the journey.  It read:  "You are a success because you are living life, not just passing through.  Success is not solely based on achievement.  Success is a willingness to make the effort.  Success keeps going, it never comes to a stop.  Success is your continual desire to live life, not just observe it."  

As I read this today a powerful truth hit me.  I've always wanted to be successful.  Successful in the worlds eyes I guess, similar to the definition above.  Success to me meant that I had achieved my goals, that I was someone, that I was important.  My success was where I found my worth, my self really.  This reading made me realize why failure has always been so devastating to me.  Why crtisim is so hard for me to hear and why my defense mechanism has always shot up the moment someone would crticize me or worse in some ways, speak truth to me. I probably desperately needed to hear it and perhaps God was using someone close to me to speak truth to me, perhaps to help me open up my eyes and allow God to transform me, I still found it hard to hear what they had to say.  In fact, I've been so afraid to listen and embrace the criticism, the truth of my failings because I was so driven to succeed.  To be perfect really, because I believed if I could only be perfect at everything I would be okay and that people would approve and like me more.  I would be successful.  Ha-ha!  This is so far from the truth it makes me laugh to think I even thought that ever.

The truth is this is so very, very far from the truth.  First of all, we are not perfect and never will be, in fact life is not perfect.  Secondly, there is nothing you can do to make people like you more, either they do or they don't, in fact what people think of you is none of your business,  your life is about you not them anyway.  I'm not saying this means you shouldn't care about people, but there is a fine line between caring about people and letting them define you.  I thank God that I am no longer a person addicted to the approval of others.  Does it still creep in some days, let me be completely vunerable and tell you this, Heck, Yes!  I still struggle with this occassionally, but I've come to realize how much I've grown and how much I've transformed.

You see the truth that I've learned is this, that it is in our imperfections that we are made perfect.  The Bible teaches in 2 Corinthians 12:9  But he said to me, "My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness." Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ's power may rest on me.

Success is not really just about achieving a set goal or attaining greatness, it's about continually moving forward living life inspite of the imperfections, the flaws.  It's about experiencing the pain and the joy that comes with the reality of living life.  It's about being the person God created us to be.  Realizing this truth gives me strenth and courage to keep going no matter what I am facing.  To love myself in spite of the fact that I don't live in a perfect world and to accept the fact that others are only human and on the same journey as me.  The greatest thing we can do for ourselves and others is to encourage and congratulate eachother for the courage to keep going.  Now that's success!!

When you listen to your heart, do not allow others judgment of you from a far to waiver your journey.
For they have no idea where you are heading and that your journey is bringing you closer to God and a deeper awareness of who you truly are.  So keep on believing in yourself and never look back, for the road behind has been washed away by the changing tides of life, and the road before you has yet to be built.
For the only solid piece of ground upon which you can rely, is the one under your feet.  So therefore, walk forward one step at a time, fully aware that life is happening right NOW in that moment. Just keep walking and trusting that as you move forward the road will appear built just for you by God himself, and that with each new step you take, he will give you just enough light to see your way.   ~Laura Smith~

The Meaning of Success

For those of you who know me well, you know that I am employed as a Regional Coordinator for an organization that teaches kids about business and financial literacy.  One of the programs we teach looks at what success is and what it will take for a Jr. High student to achieve success in the future.  In the student workbook they define success this way:  "Success happens when you realize a dream you have imagined or take steps to accomplish the goals you plan to achieve."  This is a very good program and teaches young people some valuable things.  I've recently started to see success in a whole new way and agree more with the second half of that statement then the first and can't wait to share my new found wisdom next time I teach this program in a school.  

For the past six months I have been taking part in a weight loss program through my local church.  In one of my final lessons in the four book cirriculum that I have been studying it talked about success and how success is not about reaching a particular goal but about continuing on in the journey.  It read:  "You are a success because you are living life, not just passing through.  Success is not solely based on achievement.  Success is a willingness to make the effort.  Success keeps going, it never comes to a stop.  Success is your continual desire to live life, not just observe it."  

As I read this today a powerful truth hit me.  I've always wanted to be successful.  Successful in the worlds eyes I guess, similar to the definition above.  Success to me meant that I had achieved my goals, that I was someone, that I was important.  My success was where I found my worth, my self really.  This reading made me realize why failure has always been so devastating to me.  Why crtisim is so hard for me to hear and why my defense mechanism has always shot up the moment someone would crticize me or worse in some ways, speak truth to me. I probably desperately needed to hear it and perhaps God was using someone close to me to speak truth to me, perhaps to help me open up my eyes and allow God to transform me, I still found it hard to hear what they had to say.  In fact, I've been so afraid to listen and embrace the criticism, the truth of my failings because I was so driven to succeed.  To be perfect really, because I believed if I could only be perfect at everything I would be okay and that people would approve and like me more.  I would be successful.  Ha-ha!  This is so far from the truth it makes me laugh to think I even thought that ever.

The truth is this is so very, very far from the truth.  First of all, we are not perfect and never will be, in fact life is not perfect.  Secondly, there is nothing you can do to make people like you more, either they do or they don't, in fact what people think of you is none of your business,  your life is about you not them anyway.  I'm not saying this means you shouldn't care about people, but there is a fine line between caring about people and letting them define you.  I thank God that I am no longer a person addicted to the approval of others.  Does it still creep in some days, let me be completely vunerable and tell you this, Heck, Yes!  I still struggle with this occassionally, but I've come to realize how much I've grown and how much I've transformed.

You see the truth that I've learned is this, that it is in our imperfections that we are made perfect.  The Bible teaches in 2 Corinthians 12:9  But he said to me, "My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness." Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ's power may rest on me.

Success is not really just about achieving a set goal or attaining greatness, it's about continually moving forward living life inspite of the imperfections, the flaws.  It's about experiencing the pain and the joy that comes with the reality of living life.  It's about being the person God created us to be.  Realizing this truth gives me strenth and courage to keep going no matter what I am facing.  To love myself in spite of the fact that I don't live in a perfect world and to accept the fact that others are only human and on the same journey as me.  The greatest thing we can do for ourselves and others is to encourage and congratulate eachother for the courage to keep going.  Now that's success!!

When you listen to your heart, do not allow others judgment of you from a far to waiver your journey.
For they have no idea where you are heading and that your journey is bringing you closer to God and a deeper awareness of who you truly are.  So keep on believing in yourself and never look back, for the road behind has been washed away by the changing tides of life, and the road before you has yet to be built.
For the only solid piece of ground upon which you can rely, is the one under your feet.  So therefore, walk forward one step at a time, fully aware that life is happening right NOW in that moment. Just keep walking and trusting that as you move forward the road will appear built just for you by God himself, and that with each new step you take, he will give you just enough light to see your way.   ~Laura Smith~

Sunday, March 3, 2013

Confessions of A Wounded Heart!


I just took a journey that I cannot even believe I allowed myself to take.  I went to a place that I told myself I would never go again.  I allowed myself to be manipulated and used by someone who didn't care about me or my feelings.  Why?  Because I have a wounded heart.

I have a heart that is very much in need of healing.  I have lived on this earth for 47 years and have never really known what is like to be loved and cherished by an earthly man.   I was not raised by a Dad who was emotionally available.  My Dad lived in my home for only 9 years of my life and was mostly absent after he left, I did not know what it felt like to have a man around.  I rarely had the experience of peering into my Dad's eyes to see that sparkle of approval.  Mostly what I saw was a look of disappointment and anger, as if his own failure as a man was staring back at him everytime I messed up.  Messing up was just a normal thing to do, after all I was only a child learning the ways of life.  I didn't know any different.  I just wanted to hear, "I am proud of you, way to go, you are special, you are so loved, it's okay I still love you even when you make a mistake."

I've been a Christian since 1998 and I still sometimes struggle to truly grasp that God loves me.  That he thinks I am amazing, wonderful and unique.   I've tried hard to grasp this concept of a loving God, but it has been difficult because I never really had a Dad or a Mom for that matter, that just loved me for me.  No matter what I did, no matter how hard I tried, or didn't try, the only look I ever saw in their eyes was disapproval.  Love came with conditions, mostly based on performance or behavior.  I felt like a constant failure, like I could never live up to what was asked of me.  As an adult this lead to years and years of people pleasing.  Of becoming everything the other person wanted just so I could see that look of approval in their eyes.   It became my self-idenity, if you liked me or approved or me, if I made you happy, if I could help you or better your life in some way, I was a good person.

For the most part the Lord has healed me from this false sense of self in many ways.  However, I've recently learned I've still got some healing to do.  I just ended a very damaging two week relationship, where I compromised some of my new found self-worth just to please a man and hopefully win his approval.  The good news is I only allowed this to happen for two weeks, my life is back in God's will today.  Hallelujah!  Why did I allow my value system that I had so painstaking relaid for myself to be compromised even for two weeks?  Why?  Because deep down inside I still have some healing to do in this area.  I still have moments of doubt that God loves me unconditionally.  I believed a lie and once again began to seek affirmation from a man.  The wounded part of me wanted to hear my daddy tell me, he loves me, that he's proud of me.  I put myself in a place of great compromise because of this wounded part of my heart.

Here's the funny thing, I didn't get what I was looking for in my compromise, it didn't come, and what little satisfaction there was, didn't come freely or without conditions and more compromise of who I am.  So it did not satisfy it made me feel worse, not better.  It did not make me feel loved, because it was a false sense of worth.  The value came in standing up for myself and saying no I will not, or you can not do this to me, I don't need your approval.  The value came in realizing I am better than this and I will not allow you to steal my peace, joy and new found understanding of the amazing person I am.  My true sense of worth came today as I knealt at church and felt God's unconditional love flood over me as we sang and worshiped His name.

I've learned that life is meant to be enjoyed and lived abundantly, that is what Jesus said he came to give us in John 10:10.  Life does bring struggle sometimes that we must endure, but God loves us so much that he gave us the gift of eternal joy when He came into our hearts through Jesus to help us through those tough times.  If you are in a situation where you do not feel that joy then you need to recalibrate, you need to step back and ask yourself who or what is stealing my peace and joy.  You need to get on your knees and ask God to give you the strength to do whatever it takes to get your life back on track.  He died to give us life and give it to us abundantly, that is a promise you can stand on!  Even if you have messed up and compromised who you truly are, just know you can get back on track, turn from the wrong road you are on, and head down the path to discovering true joy and happiness you were created to experience in this life time.  Do not allow the devil to steal the truth of who you are today!  A wonderful child of God, who is loved with an everlasting love.

Be alert and of sober mind. Your enemy the devil prowls around like a roaring lion looking for someone to devour. 1 Peter 5:8  Don't let it be you or your life!!

Confessions of A Wounded Heart!


I just took a journey that I cannot even believe I allowed myself to take.  I went to a place that I told myself I would never go again.  I allowed myself to be manipulated and used by someone who didn't care about me or my feelings.  Why?  Because I have a wounded heart.

I have a heart that is very much in need of healing.  I have lived on this earth for 47 years and have never really known what is like to be loved and cherished by an earthly man.   I was not raised by a Dad who was emotionally available.  My Dad lived in my home for only 9 years of my life and was mostly absent after he left, I did not know what it felt like to have a man around.  I rarely had the experience of peering into my Dad's eyes to see that sparkle of approval.  Mostly what I saw was a look of disappointment and anger, as if his own failure as a man was staring back at him everytime I messed up.  Messing up was just a normal thing to do, after all I was only a child learning the ways of life.  I didn't know any different.  I just wanted to hear, "I am proud of you, way to go, you are special, you are so loved, it's okay I still love you even when you make a mistake."

I've been a Christian since 1998 and I still sometimes struggle to truly grasp that God loves me.  That he thinks I am amazing, wonderful and unique.   I've tried hard to grasp this concept of a loving God, but it has been difficult because I never really had a Dad or a Mom for that matter, that just loved me for me.  No matter what I did, no matter how hard I tried, or didn't try, the only look I ever saw in their eyes was disapproval.  Love came with conditions, mostly based on performance or behavior.  I felt like a constant failure, like I could never live up to what was asked of me.  As an adult this lead to years and years of people pleasing.  Of becoming everything the other person wanted just so I could see that look of approval in their eyes.   It became my self-idenity, if you liked me or approved or me, if I made you happy, if I could help you or better your life in some way, I was a good person.

For the most part the Lord has healed me from this false sense of self in many ways.  However, I've recently learned I've still got some healing to do.  I just ended a very damaging two week relationship, where I compromised some of my new found self-worth just to please a man and hopefully win his approval.  The good news is I only allowed this to happen for two weeks, my life is back in God's will today.  Hallelujah!  Why did I allow my value system that I had so painstaking relaid for myself to be compromised even for two weeks?  Why?  Because deep down inside I still have some healing to do in this area.  I still have moments of doubt that God loves me unconditionally.  I believed a lie and once again began to seek affirmation from a man.  The wounded part of me wanted to hear my daddy tell me, he loves me, that he's proud of me.  I put myself in a place of great compromise because of this wounded part of my heart.

Here's the funny thing, I didn't get what I was looking for in my compromise, it didn't come, and what little satisfaction there was, didn't come freely or without conditions and more compromise of who I am.  So it did not satisfy it made me feel worse, not better.  It did not make me feel loved, because it was a false sense of worth.  The value came in standing up for myself and saying no I will not, or you can not do this to me, I don't need your approval.  The value came in realizing I am better than this and I will not allow you to steal my peace, joy and new found understanding of the amazing person I am.  My true sense of worth came today as I knealt at church and felt God's unconditional love flood over me as we sang and worshiped His name.

I've learned that life is meant to be enjoyed and lived abundantly, that is what Jesus said he came to give us in John 10:10.  Life does bring struggle sometimes that we must endure, but God loves us so much that he gave us the gift of eternal joy when He came into our hearts through Jesus to help us through those tough times.  If you are in a situation where you do not feel that joy then you need to recalibrate, you need to step back and ask yourself who or what is stealing my peace and joy.  You need to get on your knees and ask God to give you the strength to do whatever it takes to get your life back on track.  He died to give us life and give it to us abundantly, that is a promise you can stand on!  Even if you have messed up and compromised who you truly are, just know you can get back on track, turn from the wrong road you are on, and head down the path to discovering true joy and happiness you were created to experience in this life time.  Do not allow the devil to steal the truth of who you are today!  A wonderful child of God, who is loved with an everlasting love.

Be alert and of sober mind. Your enemy the devil prowls around like a roaring lion looking for someone to devour. 1 Peter 5:8  Don't let it be you or your life!!

Sunday, January 20, 2013

An Upside To Anger

I haven't written anything in my blog for a very long time.  Why?  Simple truth is.... Cuz my life was a mess and was unravelling as I knew it.  I thought my marriage was going to survive the pruning shears but it seemed it also had to go.  I had built a life that wasn't really authentic.  I can honestly tell you that most of it was a lie.  I was married for a very long time to someone who I loved like a brother not a lover and vice versa I am sure.  We created three beautiful children and for that I am eternally grateful and blessed.  My children have been my reason to carry on, to keep getting up each day and moving forward, excuriating as it has been.  You see even if you know that what is happening is a good thing.  That some how the universe, God is putting everything back in order.  It's still incredibly painful and awkward to accept.  You long so much for what used to be, for something familar of the old you, even if the old you wasn't really you.  You have days when you are grateful for the freedom this change is bringing and other days when you are terrified you don't even want to get out of bed.  Days when you are so angry at everyone, God, yourself, your ex, your kids, your friends, anyone and everybody.

I just heard an amazing quote while watching the movie, An Upside To Anger and I pondered could there really be an up upside to anger?  I could be the one speaking these words.  It went like this:  "Anger and resentment can stop you in your tracks. That's what I know now. It needs nothing to burn but the air and the life that it swallows and smothers. It's real, though - the fury, even when it isn't. It can change you... turn you... mold you and shape you into something you're not. The only upside to anger, then... is the person you become. Hopefully someone that wakes up one day and realizes they're not afraid to take the journey, someone that knows that the truth is, at best, a partially told story. That anger, like growth, comes in spurts and fits, and in its wake, leaves a new chance at acceptance, and the promise of calm."

For many years I was angry and rensentful, mostly at myself.  I took a lot of it out on my ex and my children.  I was angry because my life did not become the fairy tale I had wished it to be.  My kids and my husband, my friends, my family, basically everyone who played a part in my life wasn't what I wanted them to be.  What was causing my anger honestly was my unrealistic expectations of everyone, which lead to huge disappointment with the way my life turned out.  With the disappointment came the anger, then came depression and hopelessness and then back to anger again.  My personal life was this great big cess pool of disappointment and I felt trapped in a life I wasn't meant to live.  Deep down inside, under all my masks that others saw, I hated myself and who I had become and I had accepted that there was no way out of all of this.  Or so I thought...

I woke on January 1, 2012 and said this has got to stop.  I literally was awakened and I realized that this was not who I am.  I was not created to live a life where I felt anger, depression and disapointment all the time.  The truth was in my innocence of my youth I created a life that was not mine.  The truth was that I wasn't destined to be trapped in this state forever.  I could see freedom on the other side of my fear.  I could start over, if I could just find the courage to walk away, admit this was all wrong and begin again with a clean slate, I would be set free.  So I did, I walked away from the security of my empty, angry, depressed life and started over.

Imagine my surprise when I discovered that starting over doesn't immediately bring happiness.   In fact what it brought was fear and tons of it, and more anger.  I was angry that I had to start over, I was angry that I was alone, I was angry that my happily ever after didn't exsist, I was angry that people I thought were friends, were no longer in my life.  I was alone and on my own with 3 children, what had I done.  But when I came up for air, I soon realized, "Hey girl you've always been alone, you can do this!" and I did, and I am each day!

It's been almost a year since I started over, and I am amazed what I have experienced, nothing but continual spirtual and emotional healing and growth.  I feel myself slowly but ever so surely transforming into the person that I was created to be.  Some days I feel parts of my old familar self trying to creep back in, but for the most part, I know I've left that old girl back in the past where she belongs.  I'm grateful for the mistakes and the lessons I've learned along the way.  I now know that they aren't who I am, they are where I've been.  These experiences have taught me a lot about who I am, but they are not me.  I have the power to decide who I am and I am not my past failures.  I am a beautiful creation of a wonderful loving God.  I am alive and well and evolving continually each and every day.  I am becoming the person I was created to be.  A person fully alive, filled with God's peace, love and joy.  I am learning to appreciate the beauty of the world in which I am a part of and enjoy the blessings that were always there.  I now can receive them because I know I am worthy.   I am so grateful to God that I am fully awake with my eyes wide open and that I can see them and enjoy them each day.

I am grateful for the anger because it's like a flashing red beacon, it's a warning sign.  When you are angry or deeply unhappy with your life, it's your spirit's way of telling you that your life is not lining up with your soul's purpose.  Don't ignore the anger, embrace it and figure out what it is that you need to do in order to set your life back on the right course.  It might mean you have some surrendering to do, so watch out and hold on!  The truth is you were created for joy, not anger, not to live a life of strife.  Anger and strife is not a true manifestation of you, it's a symptom that something in your life is terribly out of alignment.

Jn 15:11 These things have I spoken to you, that My joy might remain in you, and that your joy might be full.


An Upside To Anger

I haven't written anything in my blog for a very long time.  Why?  Simple truth is.... Cuz my life was a mess and was unravelling as I knew it.  I thought my marriage was going to survive the pruning shears but it seemed it also had to go.  I had built a life that wasn't really authentic.  I can honestly tell you that most of it was a lie.  I was married for a very long time to someone who I loved like a brother not a lover and vice versa I am sure.  We created three beautiful children and for that I am eternally grateful and blessed.  My children have been my reason to carry on, to keep getting up each day and moving forward, excuriating as it has been.  You see even if you know that what is happening is a good thing.  That some how the universe, God is putting everything back in order.  It's still incredibly painful and awkward to accept.  You long so much for what used to be, for something familar of the old you, even if the old you wasn't really you.  You have days when you are grateful for the freedom this change is bringing and other days when you are terrified you don't even want to get out of bed.  Days when you are so angry at everyone, God, yourself, your ex, your kids, your friends, anyone and everybody.

I just heard an amazing quote while watching the movie, An Upside To Anger and I pondered could there really be an up upside to anger?  I could be the one speaking these words.  It went like this:  "Anger and resentment can stop you in your tracks. That's what I know now. It needs nothing to burn but the air and the life that it swallows and smothers. It's real, though - the fury, even when it isn't. It can change you... turn you... mold you and shape you into something you're not. The only upside to anger, then... is the person you become. Hopefully someone that wakes up one day and realizes they're not afraid to take the journey, someone that knows that the truth is, at best, a partially told story. That anger, like growth, comes in spurts and fits, and in its wake, leaves a new chance at acceptance, and the promise of calm."

For many years I was angry and rensentful, mostly at myself.  I took a lot of it out on my ex and my children.  I was angry because my life did not become the fairy tale I had wished it to be.  My kids and my husband, my friends, my family, basically everyone who played a part in my life wasn't what I wanted them to be.  What was causing my anger honestly was my unrealistic expectations of everyone, which lead to huge disappointment with the way my life turned out.  With the disappointment came the anger, then came depression and hopelessness and then back to anger again.  My personal life was this great big cess pool of disappointment and I felt trapped in a life I wasn't meant to live.  Deep down inside, under all my masks that others saw, I hated myself and who I had become and I had accepted that there was no way out of all of this.  Or so I thought...

I woke on January 1, 2012 and said this has got to stop.  I literally was awakened and I realized that this was not who I am.  I was not created to live a life where I felt anger, depression and disapointment all the time.  The truth was in my innocence of my youth I created a life that was not mine.  The truth was that I wasn't destined to be trapped in this state forever.  I could see freedom on the other side of my fear.  I could start over, if I could just find the courage to walk away, admit this was all wrong and begin again with a clean slate, I would be set free.  So I did, I walked away from the security of my empty, angry, depressed life and started over.

Imagine my surprise when I discovered that starting over doesn't immediately bring happiness.   In fact what it brought was fear and tons of it, and more anger.  I was angry that I had to start over, I was angry that I was alone, I was angry that my happily ever after didn't exsist, I was angry that people I thought were friends, were no longer in my life.  I was alone and on my own with 3 children, what had I done.  But when I came up for air, I soon realized, "Hey girl you've always been alone, you can do this!" and I did, and I am each day!

It's been almost a year since I started over, and I am amazed what I have experienced, nothing but continual spirtual and emotional healing and growth.  I feel myself slowly but ever so surely transforming into the person that I was created to be.  Some days I feel parts of my old familar self trying to creep back in, but for the most part, I know I've left that old girl back in the past where she belongs.  I'm grateful for the mistakes and the lessons I've learned along the way.  I now know that they aren't who I am, they are where I've been.  These experiences have taught me a lot about who I am, but they are not me.  I have the power to decide who I am and I am not my past failures.  I am a beautiful creation of a wonderful loving God.  I am alive and well and evolving continually each and every day.  I am becoming the person I was created to be.  A person fully alive, filled with God's peace, love and joy.  I am learning to appreciate the beauty of the world in which I am a part of and enjoy the blessings that were always there.  I now can receive them because I know I am worthy.   I am so grateful to God that I am fully awake with my eyes wide open and that I can see them and enjoy them each day.

I am grateful for the anger because it's like a flashing red beacon, it's a warning sign.  When you are angry or deeply unhappy with your life, it's your spirit's way of telling you that your life is not lining up with your soul's purpose.  Don't ignore the anger, embrace it and figure out what it is that you need to do in order to set your life back on the right course.  It might mean you have some surrendering to do, so watch out and hold on!  The truth is you were created for joy, not anger, not to live a life of strife.  Anger and strife is not a true manifestation of you, it's a symptom that something in your life is terribly out of alignment.

Jn 15:11 These things have I spoken to you, that My joy might remain in you, and that your joy might be full.