Wake UP!

Listening to the annoying alarm clock sounds, I am reminded how important it is to wake up. With the constant buzzing in my ear, I desire to hit the snooze button of life often.

It is so tempting when life is at its most stressful and I am hurting emotionally or physically, to turn the snooze button on over and over again. Some symptoms in the midst of depression are; no motivation and wanting to sleep all the time, in essence, to slumber.

I know I just mentioned rest in my previous post. Let me assure you that finding a quiet moment to meditate and refresh your heart, is different from living in a life in constant snooze mode. Being inactive for no purpose is not going to be productive to you.

When battling depression or seeking a joy filled life we can not afford shutting our mind and emotions off to the life around us. We can not let our days to be stolen with a slumber of inactivity. Even though we ‘feel’ we have no motivation, or we may ‘feel’ our vision is gone, it does not mean that is reality. Sometimes the very action of being awake and pressing forward is enough to break the cycle. Each day that we strive for better and strive for more in our life makes it easier and easier to become our normal rather than our great effort.

I encourage you , embrace the new dawn. Wake up with a purpose to simply not let your day be stolen. Find a dream, a vision, or an activity that needs done and go boldly with the fact that you woke up and you can do it.

Challenge this day my friend: Start fresh and rejuvenate that which we once gave up on. Do not slumber, sleeping our lives away.

Proverbs 6: 10-11

A little sleep,

A little slumber,

A little folding of hands to rest-

and poverty will come upon you like a thief

and scarcity like an armed man.

(NIV)

Silence is golden

 

A proverbial saying, that many take claim of its origion is ,”Silence is golden”. While I know the interpretation is meant to be, keep your mouth shut, I am reflecting on that fact how nice it is to be sitting in my quiet and still home at this moment with no noise and buzzing of activity going on around me.

Being an only child with  working parents had left me growing up with some  alone time. I had become comfortable with the quiet. The peace of no distraction and no noise was my friend.

Then one day came marriage and then baby one, two and three. Life has rarely ever been quiet again. My husband is also an only child, but one that thrived on the communication and busyness around him, and still does to this day. He has energy that makes a cup of coffee jealous. And his perpetual great morning attitude drives me crazy.

The boys have the stereotype energy of boys. They always have something to share and are always on the move. It is healthy for them but at times is mind buzzing to me how busy they all are.

I stayed home and home schooled my boys for much of their younger years. We had a meeting of one kind to go to or another almost daily; rehearsals, bible studies, home groups, play groups and church. I think it was literally years before I had a moment of silence because even nap time was filled with their lullaby music.

It was when we were  living in the country and  my children were in school for the first time that I realized afresh how a completely quiet moment can be a blessing. Oh, how I had missed the stillness of nothing. I learned in this season how to truly be still, and know who God is. It was time to exalt Him in a new way and keep the distractions at bay.

I often had let busyness  and life get in the way of just being silent and listening. I learned to use this time alone and quiet, to reflect on what the Lord was sharing with me or what my friends and family have most recently imparted in my life.

A quiet moment can be the most peaceful, joyfilled moment of our day. Simply being still and listening to the soft stirring of the Holy Spirit.

I now have an unemployed, energetic husband at home, and teens bursting in the door with their excitement of the day. But now that I know how important the silence is to me and the daily exalting of my God, I take a time for that. Even if it is set aside in only a moment, it is set aside.

I do have many aquaintences that feel like silence is their curse because they are alone. They hate the quiet, or may not see the sweet gift that it can be to have a moment of nothing. I pray they can embrace some of this opportunity to listen in the silence and even enjoy it. I also pray all their hearts desires come into fulfillment.

Challenge this day my friend; Look for the opportunity to steal a moment of golden silence.

Psalm 46:10

Be still and know I am God,

I will be exalted among the nations,

I will be exalted in the earth.

(NIV)

Four Cheerio’s

I went to grab the cereal box off the counter to put it away. It was light so I shook it and heard a little rattle. I dumped it over and out plopped four cheerio’s.  I thought to myself; “FOUR cheerios? Why could they not eat those four or take care of the empty box? Did they value these little O’s so much that while they were stuffed to the brim, they could not bear the thought of throwing them out?

I know most likely it was pure laziness, but my mind laughs and ponders things from many different angles. And the thought kept coming to mind, “ seriously four cheerio’s wouldn’t even be enough for the family to have one each. We would each get a part of a cheerio.”

And of course just as my mind usually goes wandering, it got me to thinking about the fact that the Lord never runs out of joy for me. Just when I think I am empty, I can look inside and find some measure of joy. The joy is never ending, always flowing, if I take the time to look for it. Just like I took the moment to see what was inside the cheerio box. However, unlike the cheerios that seemed to not have much value, the measure of joy inside me will always hold MUCH value. Some days my measure will feel less than others, but there will always be some joy.

RJ says, “ I know why I left the four cheerio’s in there, it was so you could enjoy the little things.”

 

Challenge this day my friend: Take time to look for your measure of joy.

John 15:11 – “ I have told you this so that my joy may be in you and that your joy may be complete. (NIV)

FULLNESS of Joy

While walking in the mall, I came across a beautiful little girl. She captured my attention immediately and it only took a moment for me to realize that she was walking all alone. This child was no older than two and there was no adult in sight. This little girl boldly walked towards my direction, her face lit up from the excitement of exploring. It took just a second for her to register caution  that she had no parent in sight, but as quick as concern crossed her face it was gone and she was again on an adventure.

I  began looking for  an adult right away and as I watched her, I noticed there was nobody. I had decided to approach her and make sure she was safely delivered to her parent or security. It was then that the father of this little one stepped from the corner of a nearby store. With his eyes only leaving his little girl  for a second, he looked at me and smiled.

With his gaze directed back at her, he patiently watched the exploring escapade through the window and stated simply;

” I want to see, just how far she will go.”

Keep in mind that while this little one appeared to be completely alone, her father was never really more than a few feet away. We just didn’t see him.

It reminded me with a smile of my own that the heavenly father often tests my heart and allows me to have my way. He lets me discover things on my own. He is always there if I turn to look and if I call, but sometimes He allows me to discover His world for myself.

Sometimes these results are not always peaceful, often sheer panic will cross my face and I will call to Him. The awesome thing is, I know He is ALWAYS there.

I pray that one day when all is said and done, He can say that during the times of Him testing my heart and watching me learn that I made Him proud with my decisions. I do know there are times I had failed because I did not call out when I should have but He is always there for me to return. For I know He will never leave me nor forsake me.

It is in this revelation that I know, apart from my Father, there is no FULLNESS of joy.

Following the ‘steps’ of joy, will lead freedom but not a FULLNESS of joy.

Challenge this day my friend: Let’s make sure we are not running so far ahead of Him that we don’t hear Him. Continually know His eyes are on you, He is there for you and will never leave. Have joy in HIM today. Experience the FULLNESS of joy through the Father.

Psalm 16:11-

You make known to me the path of life;

in your presence there is fullness of joy;

at your right hand are pleasures forevermore.

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