Excited for a friend!!!

My blogging friend, Arabah Joy, has released a new book!!  I’m so excited for her!

Someday my book will be finished and published.  This journey we have been on with our son and leukemia has taught us so much about the power of prayer.  GOD is BIGGER than any hard we face in this life!!

I just purchased her book and can’t wait to dive in and use it!!  Prayer is such an incredibly powerful gift!!!  Had to share this new book with you all!!

Ready to grow in your prayer life???  Join with me going through this book!!

 

 

**Above link is an affiliate link,  It will not cost you any additional money when you purchase it, but I will receive a small amount in referral fee.

 

How the death of a loved one is inspiring me to LIVE

Gripping the yellow rose tightly in my fingers, I  fixed my eyes forward, looking beyond my mother as she led us into the church.  Behind me bravely walked my four children and my husband. Following them were my sisters and their families, my three aunts and all my cousins with their families.  The melody of one of my Grandma’s favorite hymns floated from the organ and ushered us to the front of the church where each of us 12 grandchildren placed a yellow rose in the vase next to Grandma’s casket.  We all silently filled the pews, tears filling our eyes, our hearts tight with grief.

Outside the sun was shining, this fall day was beautiful and extra warm for mid-November.  It was the kind of day that normally beckoned me outside for one last adventure before the blanket of winter settled around my shoulders.  The kind of day when the sunshine and gentle warm breeze rustling the golden leaves stirred up life in my heart and inspired living.  What a gift the sunshine and warmth gave us to celebrate the life of our grandmother.  She lived in a way that brought sunshine and warmth wherever she went.

It is never easy to face the passing of a loved one, even when they have lived a full and long life.  The empty space their leaving creates in our lives is felt deeply.  As a Christ follower, we always try to focus on the joy of our loved one being with Jesus in our true home, but the earthly reality is that our hearts are filled with grief.  For our loved one in heaven it is joy, but for those of us left behind it is sorrow.

The tears spilled from my eyes and my heart squeezed tightly as the notes from the organ faded into silence and the reverend, also my uncle, stepped up to begin the service.  Yes, this celebrating life day, this gathering of family to say good-bye, would be a day that stirred up deep thoughts and contemplations.  Back and forth my heart would go, one moment full of joy for Grandma now living in our forever home, the following full of heartache knowing my days will no longer be brightened with her smile.

Over the years, I have bid farewell to several loved ones, each one leaving their legacy in my life.  I carry their fingerprint etched on my soul.  That is the way of life, each of us leaving our fingerprints on the hearts of those we touch.  Grandma’s fingerprint has stirred deep contemplations in my heart.

The days have come and gone, one by one, passing two months’ time since that warm November day.  I have thought a lot about life and death in these passing days.  Death is not something I fear, my heart is sealed in the grace of my savior, Jesus.  But the reality of death is real.  We each will live our days and we will each be ushered from this life into eternity.  None of us know the time or year, but we are each given a breadth of days to live on earth between the two chasms of eternity.

Saying good-bye to a loved one can be something that forces us to examine our own life more deeply.  This can be extremely good and valuable.  What kind of fingerprint am I leaving with my life, what legacy will fill the hearts of those I love?  When my time on earth comes to an end, what treasures of lasting value will my life have?

Big questions, intimidating ones!  Questions and thoughts that we often don’t take the time to contemplate.  Life is so busy, we rush from one day to the next just trying to keep our heads above water.  We live in survival mode more days than not.  We wake up tired and crash exhausted at the end of the day knowing that our to do list did not get done.  Is this living?  Is this creating the fingerprint and legacy I want my life to leave?

I am currently reading two books that are helping me process life and focus on living a life that creates the fingerprint and legacy I really want to leave.  I am reading Driven by Eternity (by John Bevere) and Living Forward (by Michael Hyatt. Intentionally living, not just surviving, is what I want.  Intentionally living with eternity as my perspective.  I am DOING the activities recommended in Living Forward and they are helping me create a clear picture of the life I want to live.  It has been a powerful experience that has been spurred on as I contemplate the lives of my loved ones that have passed on.

Saying good-bye to loved ones fills our hearts with loss, but can also be the push we need to evaluate our own lives more deeply.  The emotions of grief that we feel can facilitate growth and purpose in our own living.  Our own living of life can become more purposeful when we take the time to treasure the life of a loved one.  Grief is powerful, grief is hard, grief is long, but walking the journey of grief can become an opportunity to embrace our own intentional living!

Please share with me…. has the fingerprint from a loved one left on your heart challenged you to look at your own living in a different light?  Has the journey though grief ever nudged you to evaluate your own living?  Is intentional living a desire or focus for you right now?  Are you tired of just surviving and you want your legacy to be valuable??

I know… a lot of questions!!  But this life, this living, our time on earth is just so short!!  From the bottom of my heart I want to live well!  I want to leave fingerprints that are a blessing and a legacy that draws others to Christ.  I want to live intentionally and I want to do this with others desiring the same thing!  Would you like to join me diving deeper into intentional living??  Please leave a comment….  I want to create a community here that encourages living fully!

Also, join me on Facebook at Simple Faith and Family.  Let’s encourage each other to live intentionally, to process our life and to leave a lasting legacy!  TOGETHER!!!

These books are powerful tools helping me to evaluate my life!!  Have you read either of them??  If so, how have they helped you?


**Disclaimer: The book links in this post are Amazon are affiliate links.  If you purchase through my link it will not cost you any more, but will provide me with a small amount of commission.  I thank you in advance, as a stay at home mom any income I earn from my Amazon links is helpful financially to our family.**

Does having a “WORD” for the year make a difference??

Over the past several years choosing a word to represent the New Year has been gaining popularity.  It is starting to become more and more common to choose a special word.  But does it make a difference??  Does it have lasting impact or is it just like the resolutions that get forgotten by the 2nd week into January??

I’m not sure the answer, and I’m going to guess that it depends on the person.  I don’t think it really matters what effect it has on the masses as long as it is something that makes a difference for me, or you.  Is it a tool that we can use to help give us focus, clarity or purpose?  Does it help us reach goals, grow or facilitate change?

I have chosen a word a few times in the past.  Some years it has had a bigger impact than others.  Some years it has been very powerful, in others the word was just a haze the background.  Life is like that…. no two years are alike.

Do you choose a word?  How has it made, or not made, a difference in your life?  I would love to hear about it. How has a word impacted your life?

As a Christian I go to God for a word.  I know he desires to lead me in deeper walk with him.  This year as I prayed about a “word” for 2017 my heart kept being led to two words, Let Go. ” Let Go”.  I had to do a lot of praying and soul searching about what these words meant and what they would require to live out.  These kinds of words seem more challenging than some of my previous words like “peaceful, clarity and simplicity”.  Ugh.  Let Go!!

In the past four years, since our oldest was diagnosed with leukemia, I have learned to “Let Go” of a lot of things and put my faith, put my child, completely in God’s hands.  I honestly felt like I had make great progress in the “letting go” department.  However, as I prayed and listened to the voice of the Holy Spirit He revealed lots of areas in my life that I tend to keep white knuckled.  While I have learned to surrender so much into our loving Father’s care I do still hold on tight to some other things I want to control.

So this year I am bravely baring my heart and leaning in more deeply into our savior to give me the strength to LET GO.  After all, I really have no real control anyway…. it is all just a façade.  It just FEELS like I’m in control but it isn’t very productive or truthful.  I desire the peace that comes from giving it all to Jesus.

As the New Year was approaching I was driving to town (us country folk know what that means) I was praying.  Drive time has been a good praise and prayer time for me over the years.  As I was driving, and praying the Lord gave me a gift of a BEAUTIFUL sky!  His handiwork spoke powerfully into my heart.  “I am the creator of all things, I love you, I want good for you.  I made the heavens and the earth, your heart belongs to eternity but you live here for now.  I want you to LET GO of all things you hold on tightly  to and give me the reigns.  I will not let you fall, I will guide you into my purpose.  Let Go and let me!”

The visual promise God gave me as he spoke His word, LET GO, into my heart.

I slowed the van way down… almost to a complete stop on our quiet country road.  I pulled out my phone and snapped a few pictures of the sky…. of God’s words to my heart.  LET GO!

So, here I am…. LETTING GO.  I have a journey to make.  I need God to reveal the things I am holding tightly trying to have control over and I need to let go and leave my hands open.  I will have to grow in my faith in Christ and not try to snatch things back and lock my fingers around them! Already I’m seeing areas, already I am loosening the grip.  I want to embrace this and not let fear stop me!!

Have you ever had a WORD for your year that is “scary” or intimidating??

Do you have a word for this year??  Would you be willing to share it with me and what God spoke to your heart about this word??  Do you have a visual picture?  A song? A moment?

I’m excited to learn from you all, too!!  Can a word for the year really make a difference??

 

 

Stepping WAY out of my comfort zone

Well….. Here I go.  This is NOT in my comfort zone…. but I feel that God is calling me to share an important word.  It just had to be done in video instead of the written word.

There is so much anxiety in our nation right now.  Anxiety in personal lives, about the election and in our country as a whole.  It is tearing me up!  Please find encouragement in this.


 

Be your husband’s PRAYER WARRIOR!

blessingsThere is SO much power in prayer!!!  One thing we have learned over and over the last 4 years as we have traveled with our oldest son down the path of leukemia is that prayer is powerful!!  Time after time we have seen the hand of God move!!  God doesn’t always answer prayers in the way we WANT, but always in the way that is BEST!!

Praying for my HUSBAND is one of the greatest things I can do for him.  Several years ago I heard on the radio someone sharing using the acronym “BLESSINGS” to pray for our husband.  I have tried to find who shared this, but I haven’t been successful.  However, I have USED this to pray for my husband ever since!

Sometimes we get stuck in a rut praying for our husband.  I get that and want to share with you this tool that has empowered me to pray BOLDLY and SPECIFICALLY for my husband!

 

Have you watched the movie, War Room??  If you haven’t I highly encourage it!  This movie shows the power of prayer, specifically praying scripture.  God’s word does not return void and He is so faithful!

Over the years I have seen God answer my prayers for my husband time and time again.  I am so thankful for that day I heard this acronym on the radio, it has been such a helpful tool.

daily-_blessings_-prayer-for-your-husband

Click HERE to download  a set of bookmarks with the “BLESSINGS” prayer.  Place one in your Bible, hang one on the bathroom mirror, put one in your car and share one with a friend!

Praying SCRIPTURE is the most powerful way to effectively pray.  I have put together a e-book with Bible verses for each of the letters in “BLESSINGS”.  Sign up below to receive this in-depth resource.

My life motto is GOD is BIGGER (than anything we face here on earth).  Join me in praying some BIG prayers!  Our husbands will be BLESSED!!

Thanksgiving Scripture Writing Plan

I found this incredible Thanksgiving Scripture Writing Plan over at Sweet Blessings.

I shared it on my personal Facebook page and I have several people that are going to join me doing this starting on November 1st.  Each day we will rthanksgiving-prayer-listead, write and focus on a scripture to help us have a heart of thanksgiving.  What better way to enter into the season of Thanksgiving!

I don’t know about you…. but the holiday season can be a tad on the stressful side.  I want to enjoy this year and have my heart focused on the right things!!

Who else would like to join me??? Leave a comment to let us know you are joining! 

 

 

 

 

 

 

credit: Sweet Blessings She has LOTS of fabulous scripture resources and pintables!  Hop over and check them out!!

 

 

 

Life can hurt….. Goliaths are big!

I sit in the hospitgod-vs-goliathal room, seeing my 19 year old son, Wesley, laying in a bed that has become way too familiar over the past 4 years.  I listen to the sounds of oxygen, IV pumps and now a bubbling chest tube along with the soothing sounds of the praise music he has playing from his blue tooth speaker.  Life can hurt.  My mama heart just aches for the pain he is enduring now…. and has during the many days since we first heard the dreaded word, leukemia.

While leukemia is no longer the Goliath we face, leukemia treatment has scarred his body.  The war wounds are real and a secondary battle has begun.

There is nothing I can humanly do as his mama to take any of this away…. I’m so glad that we know Jesus and that Wes has his own deep relationship with our Savior.  We have lived by the motto of GOD is BIGGER and have seen, felt and experienced the power of God in mighty ways.  There is nothing like being in the depths of our lack that allows us to see the provision of God’s hand.

What we SEE with human eyes is a BIG Goliath. We see PAIN from  surgery to repair the lung, we hear a bubbling chest tube and our hearts hurt hearing his frustration and non typical irritation. We know that biopsy results are out for second opinions and that the whole reason we did this biopsy in the first place must be addressed. This Goliath seems HUGE….. But on days like this we have to CHOOSE to… be DELIBERATE and constantly renew our minds to the THRUTH. The TRUTH is… No matter what Goliath we *or you* face in life…. GOD is BIGGER! HIS strength and power will ALWAYS conquer Goliath. In our HUMAN strength…. Goliath can over power…. But Goliath can never over power GOD!!!
So…. To the Goliath we face right now let you hear me loud and clear: “I come against you in the name of the Lord our God, and YOU are not going to win this battle!”
What Goliath are you facing today???  Our God is mighty and able to conquer any Goliath.  It takes intentional faith, keeping our eyes on Jesus and HIS power.  This life has a lot of hard…. but GOD is BIGGER!!! I would appreciate prayers for our son, Wesley, and I will pray for you.  Please leave a comment below and share how I can pray for you.

Choosing an ABUNDANT life

I have a choice in which mindset I choose to filter my life.  I can choose abundance or lack.

In my relationship with Christ I have an abundant life!!  Abundant in my spirit measured in my heart, not in my bank account!  My God supplies all my needs and I am so thankful for that promise.  I am also so very glad that my level of peace and joy does not come from the balance in my checkbook , the house I live, the vehicle I drive or our physical health.  My JOY comes from the maker of Heaven and earth and I get very excited about knowing that this earth is not my home and I will spend eternity in HEAVEN!

If you don’t have this peace, please find it in Jesus!  Call out his name and He will be there!!  He longs to draw you to His side and cover you with His grace and love.  You are loved with an everlasting love.  There is nothing you have ever done, or will do, that can make him love you less (or more for that matter).  Today, reach out and cling to the source of abundant life!!  Jesus!