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Monday, August 30, 2010

A Little Much Continued…

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Today as I reflect on what I am most thankful for, I have realized that there are people I oftentimes neglect. People I expect every day to be here for me…readily available. Forgetting that we are not guaranteed tomorrow and that I should live in this moment and show gratitude for what/who I have been given!

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11. My spouse…who has always forgiven me when I have hurt him. My spouse…who protects me. My spouse…who listens to me when I am hurting and need a friend. My spouse…who lets me be me and never judges. My spouse…who is the most thoughtful man I have ever known. My spouse…who is intelligent, a hard worker, and extremely talented.

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12. My mom…who raised me in a Christian home. My mom…who taught me the importance of faith. My mom…who never gives up. My mom…who is a prayer warrior. My mom…who protects her family. My mom…who gave life to me.

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13. My dad…who treats me like his “little girl”. My dad…who makes me laugh so easily. My dad…who has a million nicknames for me.

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14. My little sister… who is still 10 in my eyes and needs to stop growing. My little sister…who has a huge heart and deserves lots of love. My little sister….who is wonderful with children and as a teacher. My little sister…who is probably more responsible than I am.

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15. My big brother…who is one of my greatest friends. My big brother…who now thinks I am cool (despite his lack of loving feelings towards me when I was little) My big  brother…who takes care of his family and gets his good looks from me (even though he was born first).

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16. My stepdad…who takes care of his family. My stepdad…who will drop anything to take his grandchildren (my nieces and nephews) wherever they need to go. My stepdad…who always carries the bags when you go shopping.

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17. My stepmom…who takes care of my dad. My stepmom…who loves to talk. My stepmom…who makes us all laugh.

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18. My niece and nephews…who have my heart. My niece and nephews…who make life more fun and a lot more bright. My niece and nephews…who have me wrapped around their finger.

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19. My In-Laws…who have huge hearts. My In-Laws…who diminish all the horror stories you hear about in-laws. My In-Laws…who are a great gift I received when I married my hubby.

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20. My girlfriends…who soothe my soul. My girlfriends…who love me for me. My girlfriends…who respect me. My girlfriends…who encourage me. My girlfriends…who are strong and beautiful women with large hearts!!

ALL of my family and friends (even those not pictured). From grandparents to church family to immediate family and extended. I love each and every one of them wholeheartedly and forever and ever and ever…Amen

Sunday, August 29, 2010

Positive Ponderings

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Positive Ponderings”

This week has kind of been a blah week for me. Trying to remain upbeat and positive has been a challenge. It has been slightly difficult to be positive when all my strength and energy seemed to be wrapped up in my blah-ness.

However, I have had to turn to God’s word for direction on getting my attitude in check.

Positive Pondering #2:

My feelings of negativity won’t determine the outcome of my day”

This week I will focus on what God’s word tells me in the midst of my heavy feelings. I will focus on the fact that He is good, every day is a blessing, and my problems are never too much for Him to take from me.

“Positive Ponderings” Details & Rules:

----Once a week we will meet here at Seeking Peace for a small lesson on the power of positive thinking. Some of the “lessons” will be ones I have learned from what God has taught me…while others may be quotes I obtain from other more experienced positive thinkers.

----Each one of us, including myself, will be required to speak one positive thing aloud on these days and share it with others.

----In addition to speaking it aloud, we then will type ourPositive Pondering” for the day in the comments section below..(although mine will be listed here in the blog)

----Also, if you have a blog, you are then welcome to create a new post of your own and link it back to me. Feel free to write whatever God lays on your heart. But make sure to share your “Positive Pondering” there with others, also. I will begin now with mine---

Finally, brothers, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable--if anything is excellent or praiseworthy--think about such things. Philippians 4:8 (NIV)

 

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Are My Emotions In Check?

How many of us married women remember the “courtship” phase? Flowers, romance, a man that seemed to hang on our every word? Feelings of worth, beauty, love, tenderness, excitement? When we said “I Do” we knew for sure our “Happily Ever After” was officially beginning.

Shortly after we married, we began to notice changes. He left his socks on the living room floor, he walked past the trashcan to lay his empty potato chip bag on the counter, he wanted to watch TV instead of go out to a movie, he began snoring, he wanted to know “what's for dinner?” instead of surprising us with a night out, he seemed to have one eye on the tube while we poured our heart out, the… list… goes… on!

Soon those feelings of love and bliss turn into feelings of confusion and anger. Sometimes those feelings are held onto so tightly that we began to experience negative emotions towards our spouse. It even seems that when he IS doing something “right” it isn’t “right enough”. It could have always been a little more. Soon those feelings can overtake and damage our marriage because we can’t see past how WE are feeling.

Feelings and emotions are a huge part of life So much so that even our physical self reacts to how we are feeling. We hurt, we shed tears. We are happy, we smile. We are joyful, we laugh. We are depressed, we appear solemn.

Jesus too had emotions. He Wept (John 11:35) He got angry over people doing wrong (John 2:15) He had compassion (Matthew 20:34) He experienced major turmoil and agony (Luke 22:44)

So our feelings and emotions are at times helpful and very valid.

But how do we learn to release those negative emotions we can so easily acquire when our spouse isn’t living up to our expectations… and get back those feelings of love and understanding towards our spouse?

We get them back by realizing that yes, emotions and feelings are natural…but if not handled properly, they can be destructive.

We get them back by asking ourselves “Am I acting how the Bible instructs me to act towards my husband? Am I seeing any good in him, any part of the man I fell in love with? Or am I focusing on the speck of sawdust in his eye while ignoring the plank in mine?” (Matthew 7:3)

We get them back when we learn to not let our emotions be the driving force behind every decision we make… because emotions can lead us into sin. (Jeremiah 17:9) We must learn to trust what the Bible instructs us to do and not always what our feelings tell us to do.

Side Note: This doesn’t mean that our feelings are never valid. Nor does it mean that we should allow ourselves to be run over and stand back. There are times we have legitimate reasons to be hurt and NEED to confront our spouse. There is a difference between being mistreated and being misunderstood.

Love is not always a warm, fuzzy and tender feeling. Love at times is a sacrifice. We have the best example of such sacrificial love when Christ died for our sins. (1 John 4:10)

Love is being concerned for another’s happiness and well being over our own. Love is being willing to lay down our life for the sake of another. Love is asking God to change our heart and attitude. Love demonstrates trust that God will provide for us what we need…even if it takes time. Love is believing that we can have a blessed and fruitful marriage when we do our part to believe God will come through on His promises.

Love will have seasons of ups and downs…but it is during those down times when love is strongest and eventually offers the greatest reward…because sometimes you have to crawl through the valley before you can stand on the mountain.

Rachel

P. S. This is totally for me!!!

Are there times that your feelings overtake your decisions and cause you to react in a way you soon regret? How do you try to prevent speaking before you think? Answer in the comment section below….

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

A Little Much Cont…

 

I am a day late for Multitude Monday, but it is okay. I figure you can never be too late to be thankful!!

 

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6.Making pizza with family and friends

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7. A 9:00pm surprise Cannoli from a friend

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8. A still and quiet morning

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9. A simple small bouquet of flowers

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10. God’s Word to fill my heart and soul

 

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This past weekend God showed me His love in many ways. I had a visitor stop by Thursday at 9:00pm with a fresh, homemade Cannoli. I heart Italian food so it was a wonderful surprise and show of love.

Friday, I had the day off and was able to grocery shop and take care of things around the home. I prepared for the arrival of my niece, two nephews, a friend and her daughter. We made our own individual pizzas, played games, had skits, watched tv, talked and laughed. It was so much fun. The next morning was filled with sleepy heads, breakfast, more games and more laughter.

Saturday evening was dinner at my moms house with my niece and nephews.

Sunday was church, lunch afterwards again at moms with kids and a lazy day on the couch with my hubby watching TV.

I am thankful or family, friends, and time to relax. What are you thankful for today?

Rachel

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Positive Ponderings

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Positive Ponderings”

Hello, my Peace Seeking Ladies!! Whom I will now call my “Positive Ponder-ers” I have felt led to create a place where positivity flourishes and negativity diminishes. I wanted to start something where we women could come together and discover the power of being positive in a negative world.

I too am expecting to learn great things from this as I allow God to lead and teach me along this journey.

“Positive Ponderings” are just that! They are uplifting, upbeat, and encouraging thoughts. They replace the “stinking thinking” we oftentimes find ourselves trapped in.

“Positive Ponderings” Details & Rules:

----Once a week we will meet here at Seeking Peace for a small lesson on the power of positive thinking. Some of the “lessons” will be ones I have learned from what God has taught me…while others may be quotes I obtain from other more experienced positive thinkers.

----Each one of us, including myself, will be required to speak one positive thing aloud on these days and share it with others.

----In addition to speaking it aloud, we then will type ourPositive Pondering” for the day in the comments section below..(although mine will be listed here in the blog)

----Also, if you have a blog, you are then welcome to create a new post of your own and link it back to me. Feel free to write whatever God lays on your heart. But make sure to share your “Positive Pondering” there with others, also. I will begin now with mine---

Positive Pondering #1:

I have a purpose”

Today I will continue to tell myself that even if I feel useless at times…even if I may feel like I am not making a difference, or even if I feel that I am waiting for something bigger from God…that at this very moment…right here, right now… “I have a purpose!!!!!”

Finally, brothers, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable--if anything is excellent or praiseworthy--think about such things. Philippians 4:8 (NIV)

 

Monday, August 16, 2010

A Little Much

 

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Hold on and prepare for some reading because my month writing hiatus seems to be over as of today. (we shall see) But hang tight because this post may be long so I hope you have some time. Should you get bored with it…PLEASE PLEASE just skip down until you see Holy Experience” and begin reading from there. Most professional bloggers say that instead of one long post…break it down into parts…but my joy and excitement just wont contain today…so here we go….

As most of you may already know, in addition to my love for writing and blogging, I have fallen IN LOVE with photography. I am a total and complete amateur, but something about capturing a moment that is rare, beautiful, unique, quiet, still, soft, bold, strong, inspiring, and special thrills my soul.

So it is not ANY surprise to me whatsoever that God led me to my FAVORITE blog on the entire world of this thing we call the internet. Now, I know…that is a pretty bold statement. It is bold, especially since I have never nor could I ever possibly review all the blogs ever created. But still, I know it is my favorite because I know God loves to give me gifts to bless my heart (which sometimes come is the smallest of packages) and He knows my heart…so I know He led me here for a reason.

Are you ready yet? Are you dying to know my favorite blog???

Holy Experience

This blog gets me going every…single…time. Her poetic nature, her love for GOD first and foremost, her love for her family, for photography, for humanity, but mostly for simplicity….it thrills me!!!

Because to me, simplicity holds more beauty than anything with a large price tag on it.

One of the things I most certainly love about the site is Multitude Monday and the Gratitude Community. It is a One Thousand Gifts experience. Read more about it by clicking the banner at the bottom of my site.

I am jumping in on mine right now and will try to remain focused on what is going on in my life…RIGHT NOW:

One Thousand Gifts… (the beginning)

I am thankful for

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When the door to past hurt closes

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For the alarm system to my house that comes with sloppy kisses, joy, and devotion

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For the way my “Tom and Jerry” –

Tucker and Ferguson get along so well

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Moments of love and trust “caught” when no one is the wiser

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I really encourage you to begin counting your way up to

 One Thousand Gifts

Love in Christ-

Rachel

Sunday, August 15, 2010

Turning it over to the One who quenches

I noticed my plants really needed watering today. When I realized we were about to get rain, I felt a sense of relief. I welcomed the chance to be a little lazy and let the rain do my job for me. Right before it rained God laid a little something on my heart. So I grabbed my camera and now I share with you what He shared with me…Enjoy!

 

There are times in our life when we have problems that need attention…

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We often think we can fix those problems ourselves…without much success.

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So we tirelessly continue to try and fill the void and never end up satisfied.

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But once we realize the “Son” is there among our cloud of doubt ; waiting for His chance to shinePIC_0011

We allow Him the room to “pour” His blessing and favor upon us...

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completely fulfilling our needs and leaving no more room for want.

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“And my God will meet all your needs according to his glorious riches in Christ Jesus” (Philippians 4:19).

as of late

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Kristen, the ExemplifyOnline Editor shared with us what she has been loving, learning and listening to “as of late.” Check it out!

She also wants us to link up what we have been experiencing lately also.

Lately: I have been spending more time in the kitchen doing what I love; cooking.

Lately: I have been really bored even though I could think of a million things to do.

Lately: I have literally ‘dreamed’ A-LOT that I visit Italy….

Lately: I have been digging around for a good book or a good movie.

Lately: I have been seeking to draw closer to God and realizing that when I do not feel “that close” to Him---it is due to sin in my life.

Lately: I have taken a break from writing devo’s and inspirational blogs because my heart is yearning…and I want to ensure I am “making it ALL about Him and NONE about me.”

Lately: I have been patiently waiting and asking for God to lead me where He wants me to go and give me the words to say when I get there.

Lately: I have been thinking that there are two things that I would love to take a day out of my life to do: 1. Delve into a pool of powdered sugar---not because I want to eat it…but because it is so soft and cool… 2. Be 16-18 yrs. old again and ride around all day and all night in my friends car listening to music, talking and laughing and not worrying about gas prices or budgets.

Lately: I have been craving tons of fun!!

YOU?

Thursday, August 12, 2010

My Wish For You

Peace when there is pain

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Laughter when there are tears

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To let go of past mistakes

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To let go of constant worry

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Happiness instead of sorrow

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Hope when all seems lost

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Joy when life is hard

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To look in the mirror and see beauty

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To never say anything about yourself that you wouldn’t say to someone else

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Acceptance of God’s grace

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Healthy relationships

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Calm among any storms

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