Goal Obtained

Finally! A goal reached! What you may ask? College. That’s right, college! I am 56 years old (December). I started my career in the Navy. College was a minimal thought as well as a different career path when I was younger. Now, looking at what is ahead of me, now is the right time. My father had a desire to see all of his children obtain something that he could not: college degree. Being a wife, mother and even grandmother is very fulfilling. Being in business for myself as well as helping others is also very fulfilling. So, why college? Because now is the right time. Now is the time I have to accomplish a goal that earlier seemed unobtainable. But I can tell you that it is not and you are not too old!

So whatever it is that you think has been delayed, think again, it just might not be time for you. But there is a time coming….wait for it. You will know when it is right.

(I chose this picture because it depicts how most of us feel when we have accomplished a life long goal.)IMG_6576.JPG

Birthing an adult

I had the privilege to speak with a mom who had a teenager. The teenager is having to deal with a lot of issues. I kept hearing from the mom about what the teenager was doing to her, her husband (the dad) and the rest of the family. It seemed that it was the same thing each day. To say that she was frustrated, didn’t even come close. She was looking for a place to put this child to get help. As much as I could sympathize with her about her daughter’s issues, I felt the greater need to hear her as a mom. A dear friend of mine once said that birthing babies was easy, it is the birthing of adults that is difficult.

I have four children. I remember how different and at the time difficult it was helping them to become adults. I must confess, I am not sure I did it all correctly. In fact, I think that as a parent at that time, I stunk! (This does not define who I am, I just had some learning to do!) They are each unique. They each have their own personalities, ideas and gifts. Trying to place a “cookie cutter” formula just didn’t work. I read books,  studied other great examples, prayed, bound and loosed everything! I was given some great advice: don’t make mountains out of mole hills, let them individuate, and don’t treat them like you used to. What worked for them as children is NOT going to work as a teenager!

Here are a couple of tips that may help you with your soon-to-be adult:

1: Don’t make mountains out of mole hills. In other words, there are some things that you can allow to go by the way side. Focus on the things that are important for them to keep as they move forward. Respect, understanding, love, honor and value to start. You can help build these values.

2. Keep communication open. No matter what I was doing, there was nothing more important then allowing them to come talk to me. I tried not to give my opinion or try to fix the problem for them. (Didn’t always do that, but tried.) They need to know that they are being heard.

3. Take them on dates. Yes, I said dates. Fathers take your daughters. Mothers, let your sons take you. This is a great way to have a one-on-one with them. It will also help instill respect for the opposite sex. It can teach them to honor others.

4. Learn not to judge them. Their opinions are just as important as yours. We don’t want to dictate to them how to think, we want them to think on their own.

5. Being an adult means facing the consequences of your decision. Face it, we all mess up. As adults, we don’t have someone come to our rescue. Let them face the consequences of their decisions. Don’t jump in to fix “it” or “them”. Character is built by facing life’s experiences. Don’t circumvent that opportunity for them. If they come to you, help them with good choices, but don’t enforce your opinion or what you would do on them. Let them make that decision.

By the end of our conversation, this mom was doing so much better. Not sure how she will incorporate my suggestions, but she knows there is someone who is available with a listening ear.

Healing the Heel

I have a confession to make: I am not a super woman! There I have said it! That is right! I am not! I can’t handle everything. I try, but can’t. I am in another process of waiting on the healing of my heel. I injured it about four days ago now. When I realized that it really did hurt, I did what I knew to do. Ice it, bandage it: there! Now it will get better instantly! Yep, that is my expectation! It’s what I need right? Coupled with the Word of God!

As I inquired of the Lord, I asked what else I needed to do? Call your daughter in law. Oh, I can do that. I am better now, so what I need to do is find out how to strengthen it. Exercise! It will help in the healing process. I am still believing for a quick recovery!

Called her. She is so good at her profession! She said, “Momma, you are not going to like what I have to tell you.” My response? “Don’t tell me I will have to ice it?!” “Yes, for about a week.” “What????” “And you have to stay off if it for two weeks.”

Two weeks??? Really? Does she not know how busy I am? I have a garden to weed and water. I have a flower bed that needs attention. I have to clean, network, etc., etc., etc….. Sound familiar? I have to ask for help?

How often do we get caught up in those things that revolve around us? I am not saying they are not important. I am not saying they shouldn’t be done. I am just saying that paying attention to my body and listening to what needs to be done to be healed is a process. Rest happens to be a part of that process.

I have discovered a few things while talking with others about my “condition”.

1. I have to change my mind. That’s right. I have a mind set that deceives me. I think that I can do it all. Why? Many reasons probably but the biggest one has to do with trust and expectations. I take people at their word. So when I do get disappointed, I take on their responsibility. (Need to change that.) I need to hold them accountable.

2. I believe in miracles. I have seen them time and again. They are wonderful. I am expecting a quick work where my heel is concerned. I also know that the Lord is interested in the process that this will work in my heart. I have to rest. Give my body time to heal. There are things that I can do from a seated position. Prayer for instance. I have become aware of several needs that need prayer. Reading, cross stitching, sewing, writing, coloring to name a few things that will help me relax. Hobbies I haven’t picked up for a while.

3. Learning to ask for help. I can get so caught up in doing “stuff” that I forget, I am not a “one” woman show. I need others just as you need others.

4. Learning to just be quiet. This is probably the hardest. Quiet: making no noise, silent, free from disturbance, motionless, free from disturbing thoughts, not busy or active.
Scripture says to be still and know He is God. I want to know Him more. I learn this in the quiet, secret place.

5. The consequences of not heeding this time. I could further injure with the possibility of surgery. It happens and then the time would be longer.

Two weeks? I will submit my self to this. Why? Because He can do His work in me when I am surrendered. So I choose to surrender to this work. His work of not just healing me physically, but allowing Him to show me where in my soul needs healing as well.

Please share with me that you have learned.

Feeling “Accomplished”!

Did you ever have the “accomplished” feeling? You know what I mean – the list is done, you set some goals and you achieved them or you finally got to go where you wanted to go for vacation! Feeling accomplished. The word means “to bring to its goal or conclusion; carry out; perform; finish; to complete; to provide polish to” to name a few definitions for the verb use of the word.

I tried my hand at a few “creative” pieces for this holiday season and I feel “accomplished”! Experts in this field would probably give me the “I think you need help” look, but hey it has been a while. A lot of what I picture in my mind very rarely looks what I imagine it will be like when I actually set to work it out in reality.

For instance, I do not have the gift to paint or draw. Oh how I would love to have that talent! There is so much I would want to paint! The sky, the clouds, the birds, the dog, the butterfly, the river, the rocks … on and on I could go, but you get the meaning! I am not that “crafty” either. Oh, I work at it, but not so much!

There may be a several things that I am not good at mainly because I haven’t used that talent in a while. I have to dust off some things to get me motivated again.

While it may not look pretty, I feel good that at least I am using my time wisely but also finding out what I am able to do with what I have.

In a previous blog, I wrote about what would not be under our tree. My daughter came home and asked if we could patch some horse blankets. I said sure. So I went to my “cloth” bins. As I started looking for the right type of fabric, lo and behold! What did my wondering eyes see…stuff to make simple gifts from! Talk about provision! I had totally forgotten that I had this stuff!

So the next few days while everyone is hustling to get that last minute gift, I am going to feel “accomplished” as I sit at the sewing machine and work a little happiness into my soul with hand made gifts.

Merry Christmas!

Year in Review

This has been a year! Most professionals say you should take a look at what you accomplished in the previous year and set goals for the next year. For our family it has been a whirl wind. Who would have thought that by the end of this year we would be living at the foot of the mountains in Virginia? Who would have thought that our baby girl would be married? Who would have thought that grand baby #8 would be in the “oven”? Who knew my husband would retire? Who knew we would have to be stretched in our faith? Who knew that we would have a new church family (that we love!)? Who knew we would go from one non-profit ministry to another? Who knew we would have to say goodbye to some famous people and not so famous people? Who knew we would have to face life head on and allow it to develop our character? Who knew? I for one wasn’t sure how this year would look in review. But pondering it, I could get tired, but it has given me hope and faith for the coming year.

Change doesn’t come easy to anyone. Especially when you feel as though you are in the pressure cooker of life. Boy, you realize what is really inside of you that “smells” like an onion! My husband is famous for quoting that line in Shrek that says “we have layers”! Boy do I! I never knew or would have known until this transforming journey I have been on. So with all the brokenness that has happened in our lives ~ here we are living a blessing in disguise – all I can say is I am looking forward to the new year.

Oh and if you haven’t guessed “who knew” – well God did and I am grateful He continues to love me to life! It is a wonderful journey!