Friday, January 22, 2016

A Letter and a Prayer ~

Stopping by blog land before January is completely behind me!

I was listening to a Podcast while trying to forget I was at a gym, it's just something that works for me :-)
The speaker made several excellent points but two stood out in my mind.

The first was if you were to receive a written letter from Jesus what do you suppose it would say?

Would he be pleased with how your living your life?

Would he feel he is your 1st priority?

Would he be pleased with the amount of time you spend with him?

How would he feel about the fact you put your children before your spouse?

Speaking of, how are you treating your spouse? Is it respectful?  You do know our children generally follow the example that you set for them..... (sit with that a minute).

Do you speak to your parents with respect (deserved or not)?

Are you in a regular habit of attending church, small group, any type of fellowship with other believers?

Are you growing in your knowledge of His Word, the Bible?

How much time do you actually spend with him daily? Turns out we can make time....forfeit some of that time on our cell phones, Facebook or television....just a few ideas.... 

Are you trusting Him in every situation, or are you trusting Him only when you need something?  
You know, in a medical emergency or to get you out of a problem you created? Are you consistent in your need of him? Or is it the only time you're really willing to spend with him?

Are you accountable to others when you are wrong? Do you freely ask for forgiveness, or wait and hope they forget your wrong doing?

Are we caring for our bodies, our physical health?

Are you loving others, are you kind to strangers, the clerk in the store, the waitress etc.....

Are you judging others rather than focusing on bettering yourself??

These questions I found can go on and on.....

So, upon hearing the question, "what would He say," I had to think, yes, what might he say to me?
 I have work to do.....

The other stand out point was regarding prayer.

How do you pray? Is it simple Dear God, thank you for this day,  help me get rest tonight, keep my kids safe and healthy....Amen
Now think of it this way..Would your simple prayer remain the same?..If, he were sitting beside you how would you speak with him? Would you be in total awe of his presence, of all he's done for you? Would that prayer be more involved and intimate? Wouldn't you just be pouring out thanks??

So, yep I have work to do...

Ask yourself questions that come to your mind....

Just popped in to share yet more of what I've been pondering :-)

Wishing you God's best!!

It's what echos from my heart today.....

Sunday, January 3, 2016

What do you Ponder?

So for grins I love to use the word, ponder.
It just sounds like less effort than, think about.
 ~
There are certain things that occur that make me stop for a moment and
Ponder.

There is the laundry ponder...
Almost weekly as I'm folding sheets, "where is that fourth pillowcase?"
I have two sets of white sheets for my bed with a total of 4 pillow cases.
Months ago I came up short a pillow case....drat!
I've looked high and low, it's no where to be found.
It's more annoying than the occasional missing sock, 
I have more than enough socks....
I'm trying to shake the memory of the missing pillowcase,
I don't understand why it continues to puzzle me to the extreme.
It's like trying to shake gum off the bottom of a shoe, it won't budge.

Then there's the Pinterest Ponder........
I will go on pinterest about once a month to see whats new.
I end up pinning almost every post on, how to have thin thighs, how 
to get rid of back fat, how to shed the spare tire on what used to resemble a 
stomach, how to loose whatever all that is that hangs off my arms.!
All with good intentions of doing something about "it."
Once I've claimed 15 or so of the fat facts....
in an instant I find myself pinning dessert recipes, meals with cheese and/or butter
as main ingredients.....with an occasional "low cal" dish for good measure,really?

Just today my cousin Dona Dee shared a "Raspberry Cream Cheese Coffee Cake" 
on Facebook. I responded with my usual response to a photo of future fat on my body, 
CRUD!

Just as I finished typing the last paragraph, my Facebook alerted me to a new post.
My daughter in law Katie just posted a photo of said Raspberry Cream Cheese Coffee Cake!

Where have you been all my life?!
Get the recipe from Oh My God Chocolate Desserts.
 
 
It must be a sign!
Raspberry's will be added to the shopping list...
After it's made and I've enjoyed every bite,
I  will move on to,
 What in the Heck were you thinking, form of pondering.....
~
It's what echos from my heart today.....
good intentions gone astray, again.
....and your welcome for including the recipe.

Friday, January 1, 2016

Renewal ~

First, a few remnants of Christmas...





Gift the girls made for Mommy and Daddy

Proud of the Happy Birthday Jesus cake they made.

Such fun watching the kids and spending the day with extended family!
~

Happy New Year!

Just can't believe we are in 2016 already, it seems not that long ago
we were waiting to see what 2000 would bring!

It's that time of year many set or reset goals, make resolutions, and a very popular
one, join a gym!

Do you all find your days become very routine?
After many days of  life with routine, we sometimes stop noticing all that
 God has put before us that will bring us joy. 
 Be it a  beautiful sunset, vibrant landscapes or
for me, the peace the beautiful Pacific ocean provides.
We get caught up in life sometimes and we begin to miss all the gifts provided us.
Some routines are healthy, such as exercise, healthy diets etc... 
Time spent with God for example will always remain part of my routine.
Without it, life is so void of true contentment.
For me that desire for contentment is something I know only God can truly satisfy in me.
Bottom line, I am limiting the "routine" stuff as much as possible...

Though it once was,
 it's not the money to be made, the bigger house, its not possessions period.
I guess because I've tried living both ways I can say, living a life that is God centered,
 fulfills my hearts true desires and it's where I find myself content.

We all find ourselves in tough circumstances,
but in the midst of those circumstances we don't need to lose sight
 of all the good God has for us.
If we lose sight of that, we likely lose sight of joy.

There is always something we can find joy in.
For me it's a grandchild's sweet face, or one of our kids stopping by...
For me it's being surrounded by a blue sky and lots of trees.
They all remain, regardless of my circumstance.

My hope is to shake up this new year and purpose to make each
day different than the last. Challenging myself to do so!

Looking forward to what the new year holds.
I plan to enter into it refreshed, and ready for renewal to take place!
Every year I have a word for the year....it hasn't come to me just yet, 
and like every year, I anxiously wait for it to become clear.

May you each enter in to the New Year with a sense of renewal and refreshment!
Look for the joy, it's there!
It's what echos from my heart today.....

Wednesday, December 23, 2015

Merry Christmas ~


Hope this post finds you totally prepared for Christmas!
Wonder how many are 100% prepared? 
Gifts are finally wrapped here, been to the market in preparation for  our 
Christmas Eve dinner, and ready to tidy up the house.

I wanted to wish all of my fellow bloggers a Merry Christmas !
Praying for all who will travel to arrive at your destinations safely.

I had the best intentions of getting all my Christmas cards out, just never got them all done.

So forgive me those who haven't received one..
Next year!

We have been having cool weather, highs in the 50's many days, evenings high 20's low 30's...
that means I may actually get to wear all my turtleneck sweaters at last! 
We had several days of rain which I'm also loving, not just because we need it but 
because it's just so nice to see again!!

I wanted to share video from Khloe's Sunday School performance
They sang, Go Tell it On The Mountain.
It was adorable, a couple of joyful tears were shed...

Hope you enjoy it even a fraction of what I have :-)




All the wonder of Christmas, 
It's what echos from my heart today!







Tuesday, December 8, 2015

...Because I Can Still Freely Share

(Much of what I'm sharing today has been shared before, I believe its worthy of sharing again, it's a direct result of my Bible study's of late ....)

Where people get the idea that because one is a Christian,
 they don't make bad choices.
Or that because one is a Christian, they must also be hypocrites.
That because one is a Christian ________
Fill in the blank, world....


It is from my experience a few things may contribute to this thinking.
Those who really believe such things, don't understand the faith.
First and foremost, if one truly understands the Christian faith they would know,
Christians do make bad choices....yes, we too are human.
Christians can be hypocritical, it's true, as can other members of life!

It's really not easy being a Christian.
It's the most ridiculed faith, yet is is a faith that teaches above all else to love one another,
even those that ridicule, even one's enemies.

I personally believe the Bible as God Word,
His Word breathed into others, and therefore penned by many authors.
A true history of mankind.

Because I believe that, and I understand how God wants me to be toward others,
I would hope to not ridicule another for their particular faith.
I would not assume because one is a "bad" (pick a faith), that all of that faith is bad.
Yet....that is what so many do in response to the Christian faith?

The second reason I believe that contributes to this way of thinking toward the Christian faith is that people
 have had bad experiences personally with a church or those claiming to be Christians. 
Christians just as any other group of people,
have faults and are not always good examples of the faith.
(Grieves me deeply)
 For that I am deeply sorry, at the same time,  it's not the 
entire faith that hurt you in whatever way you may have been hurt.

I know some had faith forced on then as children and when it came time to decide
 for oneself you chose to be done with "that" experience.
It's really quite an incredible thing when faith is by choice, when it's really studied, when one truly understands it, and therefore truly experiences it in a personal way.

Speaking for myself as a Christian.
I am not perfect, yet I know I serve a perfect God.
I make bad choices, yet I know He is a God of grace and forgiveness.
There are hypocrites that attend church, I say, what better place for them to be in order 
to recognize it and hopefully think better of it?
I try very hard not to judge, I never know another persons full story nor have I walked in their shoes.
I don't want to criticize anyone for their beliefs that may differ from mine. 
 I do struggle with any faith that teaches the opposite of love.
Faith is such a personal choice and I can't imagine chosing to be interested in one
that promotes anything other than much needed love in this world.

As a Christian I wake up everyday with a desire to do better, to be better.
My greatest prayer is that people who claim to be Christian live a life that's reflective of
that faith.  It's a faith who's greatest commandment is to love others, are you?
How are you treating strangers, employees, neighbors, spouses, friends? 
The answer should be by loving them no matter what.
Loving, it's a verb, Christian.
This I work at daily, and I often fail. 
Yet my honest desire each day is to try again, to try and get it right.
 ~
Christian what is your behavior when others aren't watching, 
when you are away from church?
Gulp, guilty myself with just a second to think about it! 
Always something to work on.....and very important that when recognized you don't ignore it!
We've work to do if we want the world to see true examples of our faith.
Live your faith in a way that all will recognize you as light to the world.

It is my belief as I shared on Facebook this past week.
Rather you believe it or not, this world is seeing what the Bible says would happen,
 is in fact
happening before our eyes.
A result of God leaving man to their own choices.

More and more Christians are martyred for their faith every day,
 I know this will continue to be more common than not in our not so distant future. 
Today I learned the sad fact that more Christians have died because 
of their faith in the 20th century than all other centuries combined.
Telling......

I am  a Christian, I have many faults, I speak freely of my faith
 because I live in a country where I can.  
Though I don't see that being the case far down the road.

 I want people I care about to really understand they have a choice,
and for all to fully understand it before making that choice.
That choice determines eternity.

 I have said in past posts, 
what do you have to lose if you choose to believe, only to find out it's a lie?
The answer is nothing.
You have nothing to lose.....
and so much to gain.
The alternative may be worth checking out....
it's my hope for each who reads this.

I am not a holy roller, Bible thumper, Religous freak,
I just took the time to educate myself and as a result experienced
what it is truly like to have a personal relationship with God. 
It does not mean bad things won't happen in life, they have and they will.
It is, a peace in the midst of all that is happening today for example,.....and everyday to come. 
It's my future....

~

I ask that those who choose to respond to this post,
 not respond in a way that attacks something so very personal to me.
It's your choice to believe differently, you're important to me despite our differences!

I can promise, I will treat you in kind..... 
it's what echos from my heart today.




Monday, December 7, 2015

Hello .....December!

Hello, have you heard Adel's new C.D. titled 25? I love it, really love the song Hello.... I highly recommend it, she does have such a gift in that beautiful voice of hers.

December, wasn't sure I was going to make it to blog land. I have a break from 2 of the classes I've been taking so I saw a window, I'm climbing in.


I am loving my classes, it is requiring me to be more disciplined with my time.  I get any study time I can when my little grands go down for their naps...(often that is 3 hours) crazy right?

We hosted a Christmas Brunch for my siblings and their families on the 5th.  Was so great to be with them, really sorry my brother and his family couldn't make it. Those days of always being together, I still miss them.


My Sweet Beans (Khloe)

Ella Roo (Ellery)



Sisters

My Great nieces Ruby and Minnie with their cousins Khloe and Ellery.



The big deal....she loves this thing!

Sisters Deanna left, Dona on the right.

Sisters and the Grands!

L to R my niece Summer, son Brian, Niece Amanda, and son Mike (clown) with the kiddos.


My sons and my two nieces.. (clown .....always)

We had a lovely day, so fun to watch the little ones play together....the day is always over too soon for me.

Gearing up for more holiday fun and making some new memories!
Hoping you aren't letting the chaos of the world enter in....
It's what echos from my heart today.....

Thursday, November 12, 2015

For the First Time Ever ~


Feeling a bit inspired to try new things?
This was a banner week for first time ever stuff, starting with Yoga.
Never taken a Yoga class prior to this week and I have taken three!
Not a fan of Yoga speak which one instructor used plenty of, I just replaced
my own words those of the instuctor. 
I don't have a third eye (?) 
and
a lotus flower between my eyebrows is not my foundation.
I have two eyes, and if something is between them I need tweezers :-)
My foundation is found only in Christ.

I'm not trying to be critical of the practice, I just modify it to work for me.
I found myself in many positions that I actually could not get out of,
other than just falling gently to one side. I'm sure it was comical to some....


I actually had some very sore muscles so it for sure is a work out.
I purchased a yoga mat and bag, and yoga socks, going to continue as long as
I feel it benefits me....the stretching and relaxation that came with it is great.

On Veterans day I spent the day with my favorite veteran,
we hit the gym and then off to the golf course.
 
We didn't actually play as those behind me would not have been at all happy.
I practiced my swing (a lot) and actually got pretty comfortable with it.
I will admit, if I had to say after day one, it may not be the sport for me...
I spent most of the hot time in the sun imagining a
 shaded golf cart and a nice cold drink
in my hand ;-)

Then we moved on to chipping and putting.
With the condition of my back, being bent over just enough to kill my lower
back was required.
We ran into a friend who took the time to advise me for a good amount of time.
Bless his heart, he had to be so frustrated with me....but he hung in there as did I.

At the end of the day,
well, lets just say my body was feeling three days of Yoga and my attempt to learn golf.
I'll continue to learn the sport of golf, with a deep desire to just drive a golf cart
with a cold drink in hand.

This all got me thinking, perhaps I should start creating a list of things I want to try.
It won't be anything like jumping out of a plane or flying one, lets not get too crazy.

Any first time things you would like to try?
I would love to hear about them.

First times, it's what echos from my heart today...