Thursday, August 25, 2016

Loyal: Five Minute Friday

I was at the Twitter party four hours before it began, because I was lonely for company. When it was actually taking place, I was at an open swim with my three girls, one of their friends and her mom. What is it about these kind souls across the United States (and world) that cause us to come back longing for more time together?

Well, it really comes into this week's prompt. Here's Kate's linkup.

Loyal. Faithful. Committed. Reliable. Dependable.
I'm so thankful these days. Thankful for a loyal spouse. Thankful for the trust we share. Thankful for loyal friends. Even if we're all busy and overwhelmed in our busy lives with our children, we're available. It may be a brief 'I'm praying for you', or 'Call me in an hour', but we know we can count on those friends. I'm hearing the term 'squad' lately. I'm presuming it describes that same loyal pack that you are surrounded with.

I've always been pretty loyal. It stems from my extreme dislike of change. I'd much rather stay and work it out than try something new. That attitude has led to longevity in church family, in my marriage, in our choice of school (and it has evolved into a full-time job at said school).
Loyalty is admirable, but for people who've been hurt multiple times, it's more difficult to trust.

This is where God takes over. We trust Him. Completely. We run to Him first when we're upset. We don't vent our emotions to humans who may or may not be able to keep it secret or discern what we're 'really' saying. We don't blast veiled hurts all over the internet.
You see, He can take it. Read the Psalms if you don't believe me. David was highly emotional, but He was 'a man after God's own heart.'
God created our emotions, Jesus walked the Earth and experienced those emotions. It's okay to yell how upset you are. He'll wait it out with you. He's loyal.
Starting in Deuteronomy, He promises.

"So be strong and courageous! Do not be afraid and do not panic before them. For the Lord your God will personally go ahead of you. He will neither fail you nor abandon you.” Deuteronomy 31:6

Here's "Loyal" by Lauren Daigle.


P.S. Please include your linkup # or your url. I'd love to read your thoughts on Loyal!

Sunday, August 21, 2016

Team: Five Minute Friday

A vacation to Idaho one week, a service project with our church the next, and before you know it, I've missed two weeks of Five Minute Friday! My apologies to those of you who have commented on my blog and received a very tardy response. Here's Kate's link this week. :)
This week's prompt is Team.

I wasn't going to link up this week, but today at church, while playing piano on our worship team, the lyrics really jumped off the page. I don't want to talk about politics, but the fact is, that as a Christian, I have a responsibility to pray for the leaders of my country.
So today, I'm going to tell you why the song "O Come to the Altar" has led me to believe I need to be fervently praying for a man named Donald J. Trump.

Two weeks ago I was in Boise, Idaho listening to a passionate Christian man named Franklin Graham encouraging us to pray for our nation, our state, our city, and our candidates. He did not tell us whom to vote for. "God will tell you who to vote for, but you NEED to vote!"

At the beginning of this process I would never have believed that Mr. Trump would even be a consideration with his rough edges and rougher mouth. Now that I'm just a couple months away from the election, he is the representative of the Republican Party.

I was born the same year that Ronald Reagan was inaugurated. My parents were proud supporters of his team. I have always been more conservative than not, and have not voted straight party ticket, but have always researched candidates before voting.

What I saw this week in Mr. Trump, though, was care. He traveled with his vice-candidate Mike Pence to Louisiana. He helped people. He talked to people. He listened to people.
He showed compassion. He didn't hold a large press conference announcing his good deeds. I found out about his visit through the Samaritan's Purse organization which Franklin Graham leads.

I am seeing a change, and I believe that we as Christians need to be praying. We need to be united as a Team. I was playing the piano and thinking of the Samaritan woman and how she was discarded and Jesus loved her. Donald Trump needs the transformation of Jesus as much as any of us. Instead of judging him (or any other), can we be united and pray? I still believe that the good of the Republican Party exists, but we need to unite and pray and work together. We're on the same team.
(By the way, I'm at 7 minutes. So sorry.)


Thursday, August 4, 2016

Happy: Five Minute Friday

This week's five minute friday prompt is Happy. Come to Kate's place for giveaways and celebration and anniversary party galore!

"Happy are the people whose God is the Lord." Psalm 144:15

As I searched the word "happy", it's really not as common as cheerful or joy or some other words we relate to happy. But that short verse I began with? That really is key, for me, to happiness.

You see, I'm guilty of losing my happy sometimes. Lysa Terkeurst talks about getting your happy bumped, I think. I'm actually celebrating tonight after completing a 6 week course (3 credits, grad-level) for teaching Mathematics. I needed 1 credit to count for my 2 year license. Those are difficult to find, so I hope that I'll bank some of my credits toward my next renewal.
As I celebrate, though, I was on the Twitter party for FMF and was asked what my happy style was. Here's the link to take the five minute quiz yourself:

Jennifer Dukes Lee has just released her book "The Happiness Dare" and her quiz was insightful. I find happiness best with people. When I am giving to them, and helping them. This past year was my first year on staff at our daughters' private school. I loved doing little things for the other teachers. Little notes and gifts, it's something I have always enjoyed. I like to outwardly encourage and express my appreciation for other people. So my ranking was Giver, Relater, Doer on her quiz. (there are five matches you can have, one being your "primary" and one your "secondary".)

As a child? I even cross-stitched "I'm a little doer". But really? God wants me to delight in Him and know He delights in me. My happiness at being loved unconditionally spills out and spreads that love, extends that love to all His children around me.

I enjoy giving compliments to complete strangers. It's kind of a game of mine. I will watch for people who just look like they need a boost (usually women, later in the evening, often the grocery store or Walmart) and find something I genuinely want to compliment them on. It's just so much fun! I don't get anything back except the satisfaction of their response. So many times, they are shaken out of their focus and surprised. I've never made anyone angry, so I'm going to keep doing it.
Happy to have had help from a fellow teacher and friend finishing this mural. Even happier that I did it-it's the mascot of our school and I got it done in six days with her help on the final day!

Happy to have a husband who humors me with silly self-timed kissy-face pictures on a waterfall hike with all three of our girls.

Happy when I'm pretending to be a character out of the Bible times for the children at Vacation Bible School. (Fellow worship team member-we both wore wigs and costumes for the week in Egypt)

So, if you're happy and you know it, then your face will surely show it, right? I need to practice my happy face around my kids and laugh more. Sometimes Mommy gets waaaaay too serious!
Here's the Sesame Rendition of Shiny Happy People..."Furry Happy Monsters".


P.S. Please include your linkup number or url if you would like me to visit your post as well! :)