Gratitude Push Back

 

twitter-postLast week I posted about being obsessively grateful, (you check out that post here: http://bit.ly/2ed2cAg  and sure enough another circumstance arose to check out if I was serious about it).  I call it the push back – you may call it something else, but I’m sure you are familiar with it. That thing that happens, is said, or you see which asks deep within you ‘do you really mean what you said. Believed. Decided. Are you really convinced its true?’

But, the push back makes you stronger, and more resolved, especially if you see it for what it is – a distraction. When we allow our stuff, the feelings and thoughts to ebb and flow, rise and fall (and all those other sayings) according to the circumstances in our world, and the world, we end up tossed and turned and bounded about in the ocean of life. James puts it beautifully (although confronting ha-ha)

James 1: 2-6

Dear brothers and sisters, when trouble comes you way consider it an opportunity for great joy. 

For you know that when your faith is tested, your endurance has a change to grow. 

So let it grow, for when your endurance is fully developed, you will be perfect and complete and needing nothing.

If you need wisdom, ask our generous God, and he will give it to you.  He will not rebuke you for asking.

But when you ask him, be sure that your faith is in God alone.  Do not waver, for a person with divided loyalty is an unsettled as a wave of the sea that is blow and tossed in the wind.

Life happens. Ready or not, it happens.  The good. Bad. Ugly. Challenging. Joyous. Fun. Hilarious. Sad. Happy. Full purse. And the empty back account. And so much more.  But just cause life ebbs and flows, doesn’t mean you have to, you can remain steady in a tumultuous climate.  So my question today is – what is your stabilizer?  Or, should I say who?

It might be your husband, wife, friend, parent, mentor or leader, or pastor.  No matter how strong they are, they too will experience a season where they cannot be your stabilizer, it’s not because they are lacking ~ but because they are not designed to be that. We are to help carry another’s burden (Gal 6:2), but not the entire weight of their life, decisions, emotions and everything else that life involves.  Nor should they have to really – we each have been given the ability and gift of choice.  Choice to how we live our life’s, what we will accept as status quo and what we will embrace, to change when we can no longer live with.

But hey, the good news is that there is one, who can withstand the waves of the world and be your stabilizer.  You just have to want Him to be and let Him in navigate life. I’ve heard people say that we give God the keys of our car (of life so to speak) when we ask Him into our life’s, but that implies that we step out and sit by the beach sun baking. To me my relationship with God is like having the perfect navigator (way better than google maps or a Navman)to guides me.  I get to choose if I listen to the guidance given, hear that, He loves me enough to let me decide when I want to listen to Him – that’s some trust He has in me.  When I don’t, I end up needing to make a u-tune (as He knows not only what is best for me, but He, only wants the best for me).  Sometimes the road seems to be hard terrain, but He says, you can get thru it, keep going.

For me, when the push back comes, I remember that I have the best navigator in the world, doing life with me and making the impossible terrain possible.  I love that I get to do life with God, and the great news is that He is happy to do life with us all.

Happy Pondering x

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be obsessively grateful!

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Gratitude. Thankful. Positive. There is always something to be thankful for- even in the darkest of dark storm seasons. I’ve challenged myself to lift the gratitude quotient in my life numerous times- the latest being a few months ago.  And the thing that set it off was a visit to Kikki K on a totally unrelated shopping mission. Specific stationary sets you up for success lol, and helps you find things in life to be grateful for (like specialised stationery shops, with gratitude notebooks).

Only a few week after the challenge began, I stumbled across an article which described the physiological benefits of looking for things to be grateful for even when you think there’s none. Apparently it’s good for your health- mental well being and all that (so now im healthier too – go me!)
 
It’s all too easy to forget to be grateful when life’s good and just as easy to be overcome with darkness when life’s not. So today I challenge you- what are you grateful for. How’s your gratitude quotient. Can you list three things you’re grateful for? It’s where it starts- and then tomorrow list another three, and the days after that and that and that.
Until next time,
Happy gratitude -ing
 
Oh, don’t worry about repeats, sometimes you realise just how grateful you are for things….
… like chocolate 😉

Its never not OK

faith-is-deliberate-confidence-in-the-character-of-god-whose-ways-you-may-not-understand-at-the-time

Pinterest, it’s a love hate relationship.  I love the homes I might never own, and to plan a holiday to a place I might never go and to dream about having a place to wear those exquisite clothes, but the crafty projects and food trials – oh that’s why there is a so much laughter at the try’s and fails.  But I love the quotes, words wrapped neatly together in just the right way to impact your heart and life for maybe a moment or even a lifetime.

A few week ago I stumble across this Oswald Chambers quote; ‘Faith is deliberate confidence in the character of God whose ways you may not understand at the time’. Love this!  All too often we think we need to get it, understand it, and be able to comprehend it.  But truth be told, getting it (the circumstance which surround you in life) intellectually has nothing to do with trusting God.  Just cause I don’t get what’s going on doesn’t mean I can’t trust God.  It’s a choice to allow His character to be the focal point, the very essence of who He is, over the world which swirls around us.

Allowing God to be the focal point allows one to look past the storm to the rainbow which is coming.  God has been saying this to me for months now, I think He says the same thing to you too‘It’s never not been OK with Me’, meaning that no matter what circumstances or storm come at you, that you have and are always able to come back to a place where life is OK, in fact wonderful.

Now I’m not saying that wants going on is great, it’s probably not (especially if life’s not a happy place at the moment). But I’m saying that God is! His character is steadfast and His love for you, me and all that are breathing, have or will be is eternal. Without measure, beyond anything we can fathom.  And this gives us the confidence to know that no matter the bills, relational trials, health concerns, or any other worries which might try to show themselves as real players in your life; He is faithful to be with you and GOOD, to get you through.

I hate the phrase “what doesn’t kill you, makes you stronger”, we are not strong because we stubbornly stood in the headwinds of adversity. We are strong because when the wind was seemingly too strong to bear, God came and stood alongside us and walked us to a peace and comfort which is found in Him alone.   He promised He’d never leave or forsake us.  He Hasn’t. He says you can know a peace beyond understanding. Do you?

I don’t know where you stand and what you believe about God, but today, I encourage you ask Him to show you what’s it like to know you’ll be OK with Him, start a conversation, you might be surprised.

Until Next Time, Happy Ponderings

..expansion

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This was actually from way back- slack slack, I know. I’ve actually written three blogs this week, but they’re for another day. But I thought I share this little thought with you, cause somehow it seems just as relevant as when I first penned it while studying in early 2014.

Expansion!

What’s needed to go to the next level? What tools will I need, what do I have, what needs refining? I’m back to serious study this year, not the certificate level of my last few adventures but my graduate diploma… I’m sort of missing competency pass or fail mode. I feel like it’s been a massive challenge to read and write at this academic level, and well understanding what I’m learning, that’s a whole other drama. (Ever known someone who uses complex language just to make you feel dumb? Well you should meet some of the authors I’m reading..they have caused some serious brain hurt 😉

Anyway, enough whinging,what I wanted to chat about was the excitement that underlies a time of expansion, sure theres plain tiredness and hurt but there is also this drive, a push to achieve all that is laid out before you. It’s exciting and exhausting wrapped into one and it causes us to laugh and smile at the huge workload because we know that it’s being used to grow us unto the next season of life. Did you know that you, yes you, can achieve so much more than you’ve ever given yourself credit for? You have this untapped potential! You are growing into an amazing person (at least I hope you’re growing and not moaning and poor me-ing), you have exponential potential, expansion is going to show your friends and family and maybe even you what you are made of! But, I know this for sure, God is never going to be surprised by the array of things you can achieve. You know it doesn’t matter now many times you’ve failed, quit or struggled with your lives dream, because God sees the you, the real you are under all the junk and expectation you heap upon yourself. You are valuable beyond compare.

Now, I know not all of you believe in the God, but I believe we get to have a relationship with Him, living and flowing not just talk about God like a possession. It is God who I credit for this expansion season, because in my doubt, concern and worry- He simply says ‘you’ve got it covered!’. Without Him, I’d be a mess. I’ve no idea what comes next,but I know God goes with me and therefore the unknown is an adventure awaiting me. He goes with you too. When life throws you a season of expansion, grab it with both fists, for you never know, the wonder you’ve always desired maybe just over the horizon.
Happy Pondering!