Tag Archives: quote

Surprised By Joy

“Walking and talking are two very great pleasures, but it is a mistake to combine them. Our own noise blots out the sounds and silences of the outdoor world; … The only friend to walk with is one who so exactly shares your taste for each mood of the countryside that a glance, a halt, or at most a nudge, is enough to assure us that the pleasure is shared.”
― C.S. Lewis, Surprised by Joy: The Shape of My Early Life

Rather than walking, I spend much of my time these days gardening, in the absence of real, present time human company. Friends’ encouraging and informative words visit me as I labor, but for the most part I listen to the livestock and the earth.

They actually resound all that I or anyone I know needs to hear.

 

“Let your roots grow down into him [Jesus], and let your lives be built on him. Then your faith will grow strong in the truth you were taught, and you will overflow with thankfulness.” Colossians 2:7 (NLT)

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Filed under Notes from the Apex, photography

The Best Choice Today

Have you ever faced a hard choice wishing it was not up to you? Have you ever regretted a decision? Welcome to my thoughts today, as I seem to bear the weight of the world!

whats right

 

Today I’m considering quotes. Usually quotes from my late brother help me most often, like “It’s not about who’s right, but what’s right.” But that’s not much help today.

I take more time making decisions these days than ever before. Perhaps that’s because America is caught up in the Presidential Election Primaries – so much information, the actual facts (verses misinformation or subjectivity), so little time. Maybe because I am older than I ever thought I’d be and yet vital, I approach many decisions more seriously. More than ever before in my history every choice seems more important in nearly every area of life.

Faced with making a decision that will directly impact my household, possibly my entire family, I’ve been profoundly circumspective the past few weeks – months actually. It’s not all bad. I’ve discovered among the blessings of aging is history; I can look back at choices I made and examine what was good, what could have been better and what didn’t work out so well – and why. As recently as a few years ago, my history had me reluctant to make decisions that had much bearing on anyone but me. One such choice about three years ago was to combine my household with my sister and brother. That decision brought me here, both geographically and metaphorically.

During weeks of introspection and examining the facts, thoughts from Louie Giglio’s book, I Am Not But I Know I Am come to mind (paraphrased):

  • I am not God. Therefore I cannot alter His plan.
  • God doesn’t have a backup plan in case I screw up His plan.
  • This story isn’t over, not even the results of decisions I regret because I chose while angry or hurt.

One choice that faces us all more than we even notice, is to do what’s best. Granted, I like to examine everything from every available perspective –  which often annoys my housemates. For example,

shall I:

  • get up now or go back to sleep,
  • eat cheese, eggs, beef or chicken, tea or coffee
  • walk in the morning or afternoon
  • spend now to save or do without

Under our intense circumstances our household often faces choices that ordinarily seem simple but are actually complex and have an impact on someone else or another area of life:

I’m groping here, but for example:

  • leave a light on in case someone in the household isn’t home yet (impacting the electric bill)
  • shop for food today because supplies are scarce or wait until the coupons and sale ads arrive
  • spend any more time trying to save a few pennies

But the biggest choice facing me now,

  • should I stay in my present household with family or move to somewhere more conducive to my needs.

The hardest part of the process is considering the list under the category,

What if

Some choices offer immediate results so they seem simpler. Those involving others and bear more dramatic, long-term or unseen ramifications are more challenging. With all our advanced technology, seeing ahead is sometimes as difficult as ever, particularly when our choices affect the lives around us.

“The needs of the many outweigh the needs of the few.” Spock

When faced with difficult choices, I rely upon intensive prayer and fasting. Even then answers can seem subjective, especially to my vision in the moment. So, whenever possible I give myself time. I dread the chance I may have missed something important simply because there’s so much to consider. While I’m undeniably an emotional being, just as able to make a decision that could be influenced by my feelings in the moment, faith also guides my decisions.

When people do not accept divine guidance, they run wild. But whoever obeys the law is joyful.” Proverbs 29:18 (NLT)

When open communication is tricky, confusion and offenses weigh in, being no more self-centered than the next human, my maternal instincts tend to override other logic. Still, I’m careful about doing something or entertaining thoughts that seem to be all about me – essentially evil.

“See that none render evil for evil unto any man; but ever follow that which is good, both among yourselves, and to all men.” 1 Thessalonians 5:15 (King James Version)

Today my search for wisdom and direction led me right back where today began. My only plan remains to prepare myself to be ready when the time comes to either stay or move.

“If only you would prepare your heart and lift up your hands to him in prayer! Get rid of your sins, and leave all iniquity behind you. Job 11:13-14 (NLT)

A die hard scout, I shall prepare for whatever, continue listening and wait.

Good talk. Thanks!

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Stick With Love

stick with love mlk

 

“If I gave everything I have to the poor and even sacrificed my body, I could boast about it; but if I didn’t love others, I would have gained nothing.” 1 Corinthians 13:3

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Filed under A Door Ajar

Then, Now and Forward

“You are like that illuminating light. Let your light shine everywhere you go, that you may illumine creation, so men and women everywhere may see your good actions, may see creation at its fullest, may see your devotion to Me…” The Voice (c)*

homeward bound

 

One of my fore fathers amassed a fortune to pass on to our family, so his next generations thrived in the upper socioeconomic class. Late in his career however, his partner somehow robbed him of their business. All that was left to him were his personal assets.

For whatever reason, two generations later I grew up in very meager means. Indifferent to the class-consciousness of my previous generations, I am thankful my humble beginnings made me not only stronger than I had any right to be, but a considerable fighter.

I’m thankful to have raised my sons well in a comfortable life, despite many unexpected circumstances. As they began to set out on their own, I realized I was tired. At thirty-four years of age I was tired of fighting, pushing myself to excel at everything, always watching my back and despite my huge family, feeling entirely alone.

I am fortunate that at thirty-four I survived a heart attack that brought me to a complete stop. As I healed, I realized I had believed I must do it all, all by myself. Evidently, if I wanted to finish strong much later on I had to change.

At that point my life began a complete transformation. I recognized the anger I inherited and I stopped fighting. I began to recognize the Source of not only amazing strength but a mind that took me where neither reason, any formal education nor my history could have. From there I stopped surviving and I began living.

Although I argued the concept when I first heard it, all along the way one particular quote challenged me, inspired me, encouraged me and guided me. Soon my entire being gave way to faith in the One that is higher than I.

I have come full circle now; I’ve lived fully. My genetic statistics would have me taper off and hunker down for a peaceful end. While my sights are set on heaven and home, I am determined to take as many souls there with me as possible. Hopefully, they don’t all put up the fight I did, but even if some do I’m still all in. Now I live to shine.

 

*The Voice; Matthew 5: 16. The Voice Bible Copyright © 2012 Thomas Nelson, Inc. The Voice™ translation © 2012 Ecclesia Bible Society. All rights reserved. Courtesy, Bible Gateway https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Matthew+5&version=VOICE

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