Archive for June, 2009
I am heading South to the great State of Texas for a family reunion. We’re riding in my parent’s RV, which I love. Camping is a fav activity of mine, so I’m pretty excited. I am taking my laptop, and if I’m inclined to post a blog article, I will. If not, I will catch everyone in about a week.
Here’s a preview of what I’ll be doing:
Playing hostess in the RV while my dad drives.
Braking from the back, since my dad is driving. LOL!
Grabbing snacks and drinks for everyone.
Lighting matches while in route (don’t ask).
Reading, planning, and brainstorming.
No napping…my dad is driving! (Ok, so he sight-sees while driving…but at least there are no mountains or cliffs this time!)
Oh, and I’ll be seriously missing my kitty cat, Chunks. He’s my bud (and he knows it;-)
Praying…you guessed it…dad is driving (I’m just kidding!) I pray ’cause of all the other crazies!
Alright, ya’ll have a great fourth if I don’t post before then! I lived in Texas for 12 years and it’s true. You an take a girl out of Texas, but you just can’t take the Texas out of the girl! Ya’ll!
Here’s something rather cool that I added to my business website under The Daily Grind.
It will make you think:
What have I not done today that will cause storms later (procrastination) or what do I need to listen to today to prevent and weather storms later…Hmmm…
Think about it…
Today I heard the news of two celebrities dying. One who was ill, and the other who died suddenly. Regardless, I ‘m not going to write about them. What I’m going to write is a message that I got loud and clear today.
I started my day in the usual way. Pour a Pepsi, take the dog out, and say “Good Morning,” and pray to God. From that point on, I either have appointments I need to keep, work to get started on, or find solutions to issues that I want to resolve.
1. I wanted to find a mentor.
2. I wanted to map out my next book.
3. I wanted to explore open positions in ministry to work with a team of leaders.
4. I wanted to call the school to inquire about financial assistance for obtaining that Master’s Degree.
5. I wanted to vent my frustrations and whine a little over a few things.
6. I wanted to write a blog entry on mentorships and research the web for some information.
7. I wanted to attend the board meeting (Yippee, I was voted on as a board member for a non-profit!)
8. I wanted to pray EXTENSIVELY to figure out my next steps, spend time in Scripture, and walk with the Lord for awhile. (And no this doesn’t represent the order in which they were done. Number eight was actually the first to be done 😉
This afternoon after learning that several celebrities had died within a few hours of each other, my remaining schedule is looking like this:
1. (Not important)
2. (Need to just get over it)
3. (Really, this was a must do?)
4. (Venting? Seriously? Was it THAT bad?)
and on and on and on…
I was reminded that our circumstances can completely take us so far off target that we start to focus on them and lose sight of what God really wants us to do. And for me, this got my attention. All of the sudden I thought, “If today were my last day, would I have been focused on what God wanted me focused on or would I have been focused on appointments, bills, and stupid stuff?” Well, I decided today that I don’t want to die while focused on stupid things that mean nothing to The Kingdom. Nope, when God calls me home, I want to go focused and fixed on His promises.
My daily programming shouldn’t be based on the crisis of the hour, the 1001 things to do, and scheduling things that will occupy my time for the next six months. My daily programming was interrupted today to remind me of what truly IS important. My task should be to focus on what God has given me for the day. Meet the need. Do the task. Write the book. Help a neighbor. Talk to a friend. But not without keeping my focus on Him and seeking His clear direction. Life is too short. I realized that one of the most important things I want to do each day is to make sure that I am right with God in my actions, thoughts, and motives.
That requires focus. And today I realized that my focus was on things that in the end don’t really matter. Now that I can get back to my regularly scheduled life, I find myself thinking most of the stuff I have on my list is not as important as I once thought. Those tasks can wait while I realign my focus on what really matters. Wow. Totally attention getting. Thanks, God! I needed a change in perspective.
Practice What You Preach is a workbook designed for entire churches, Sunday school classes, small groups, and individuals to use to take what they learn in sermons and biblical teachings and put it into practice 30 days at at time! The 30 Day Challenges can be selected by the Pastor, leader, or individual. The workbook exercises help individuals track their progress, learn and study Scripture it relates to the given 30 Day Challenges, and promotes personal accountability and responsibility for life change.
Yesterday, I woke up bright and early. And again today, I woke up earlier than normal. In fact, today I woke up just in time to see the clock change from 6:59 to 7:00am. Had I woken up and looked at it one second later, I would’ve missed it. That’s how I know precisely what time I opened my eyes. Instantly I sat up, and began to think about the day ahead of me. I checked my email, glanced at my web stats and sales reports, and stopped.
I needed to wake up and prepare for a meeting. I grabbed my morning Pepsi, my Bible, and headed out to my deck. I read and reflected. And after a period of time, I closed my Bible, closed my eyes, and laid out all of my thoughts to God. And then I got quiet. I just meditated, with my eyes closed, and took turns thinking, and then listening to the quiet sounds around me.
I had a meeting with God. It was just me taking time to sit and listen. Yes, I could hear the busy birds chirping happily in my Maple tree and the sound of the winds rustling through the leaves, but it was just the sound of Nature and the things that God created that I was hearing. I’d think, stop and listen. And think a little more, listen for a longer period of time, pray, and listen. And then it was eventually just a stillness in my head where I found myself lost in my listening.
What I noticed more than anything was that I became completely focused on Christ in that time. I focused on what is important to me-my priority which is living for Him, becoming more like Him, and being used in this life for His purpose. I feel balanced. I feel prepared. I feel confident and hopeful as I start today. It’is what will help me stay focused as I encounter thousands of distractions, temptations, and otherwise unimportant things that will approach me at any given time during my day. I must stay laser focused to achieve the mission God has placed before me. To do so requires balance and focus.
Life balance is not some gimmick. It’s a real way to live your life and completely focus on what your priorities are. And, since mine is living a Christ-centered life, I am designing more and more of my work to reflect that. It seems that with every meeting, I am getting further and further away from just the regular business models. I am working more and more for the Kingdom of God. I am balanced with my priorities, and how I live and spend my time is a direct reflection of my focus through my balance.
Oh, I will continue to teach and present in the business world…I am not leaving. I was thinking after my meeting with God this morning that more and more of my writing is directly related to balancing and the Kingdom of God. That is where my focus is. That is my priority. That is my PASSION. And my life balancing and life management is keeping me there. Truthfully, those are gifts from God, and I am using them for His glory, and I am so honored and humbled.
I am so happy that God reminded me in our meeting of the importance of what I teach in my workshops. And the best part? Teaching in and for the House of God. Very humbling.
Great meeting 😉
You can attend this one!
This life changing workshop is appropriate for everyone!
Join the Happy Hour (Life Changing) Workshop Tour
Get your tickets here
This has a history of being a sell out event. Advance purchase is required!
This is a professional workshop and non-alcoholic event. Learn more here
Last weekend, I took my daughter for an entire day of fun at the City Pool and water park. I had been working on preparing for a Happy Hour (Life Changing) Workshop tour, so I promised her that Saturday was ALL hers. She chose to start at the zoo and then head to the water park. Little did I know that we’d be at the water park from opening until closing. Yes, we had that much fun. And it wasn’t a relaxing sunbathing day for me. It was in the water, wrestling with her, holding her up so she could jump off of my legs/shoulders, and racing her in an Olympic sized pool. After six hours, I was hungry and EXHAUSTED, and almost too exhausted to cook and eat anything!
I got to thinking about the fun, but very tiring day we had. For those who know me well, you know that I will not get in a pool if I cannot see, stay away from, and never come close to the drain. I am absolutely MORTIFIED of them. Okay, and yes, even worse…when I stay in a hotel and take a shower, I must keep one eye open and on that stupid drain in there. I just don’t do drains. I don’t like them, I won’t touch them, I won’t save anyone drowning near one (just kidding…I think…thank goodness I’ve never had to find out! If you ever go swimming with me take a third person so you have a back up person to save you if I chicken out!), and I flat out will not get into a hot tub unless I can keep my feet off the bottom. Ever. No way, no how, I am soooo seriously terrified of drains.
When my daughter asked me to race her from one side of the pool to the other, I declined. I wasn’t about to swim over one and have to pretend it wasn’t underneath me, and not look down even though I would know it was there. To me it was clear and present danger and I wasn’t going anywhere across that pool. I was staying close to the edge of the pool. I know they won’t hurt me technically (although I did see that they have had to change the design of them in recent years due to safety issues, ha…I was right!), but it doesn’t matter. I’m a chicken.
Okay, to get to the point of what I started thinking about regarding my faith…
I am a prayer warrior.
I’m a little woman who cannot wait to get her Master’s Degree to learn more about Biblical Leadership and use it in the world to change, equip, and help lead growth and create leaders in the Kingdom of God.
I know it will be a battle, but I am confident about putting on the full armor of God to do so. God will equip me with exactly what I need and I trust Him.
I am SO willing, EAGER, and ready to go and DO whatever God asks me to do (and in fact, I feel like Owen Wilson and the other little Roman guy from A Night At The Museum…they were two very tiny guys who were so ready to just go and fight the fight not thinking about how small they really were. They were fearless and ready to go now!!! That’s how much I want to do this!)
So, if I’m that willing and eager, and have faith and trust the Lord to walk blindly and just go…then how come I couldn’t swim across the pool with my daughter because of my drain phobia? I trust God SO much that I can fight a mighty battle and stand for His Kingdom, but I’m afraid of a swimming pool drain that is going to do…what? What’s it going to do? It’s not like there’s a trap door under the grate. Is there?
Regardless, the message hit me. I prayed in the pool, tucked my feet up (never came close to touching the bottom of the pool…man, I kicked like there was a shark coming after me) and swam with my daughter. I swam for six hours with her and had a blast! And after a period of time, I found myself venturing out further, deeper, and getting involved in a lot more of the pool games!
How many times do we let FEAR keep us from doing what we really want to do. And what’s more, how many times do we let FEAR paralyze us and not do what God is calling us to do?
If He’s called us…He’s equipping and strengthening us with every act of obedience. We have to be obedient and go to the first place He calls us, in order to get to the next place. Each successive place we go for the Lord will equip us for the next.
Faith AND trust will ELIMINATE fear.
Amazing what I learned in 3.5 ft of water.
Now I can move to the deeper parts of my faith 😉