Tag: life lessons

What Do You Do When Your Plan Gets Interrupted?

What do you do when your plan gets interrupted? It may be due to a job change, an illness, a change in circumstances, or whatever. How do you respond? I find myself in that exact situation now. An illness has interrupted my normal everyday life and I find myself at a crossroads.

Here are the three ways people can respond to change according to Success Magazine:

  1. Be Non Active – people resist change and blame and stay stuck
  2. Be Reactive – people jump into the next crisis without thinking things through
  3. Be ProActive and Positive – people put their focus on what they could do, focused on the positive outcomes and took action

I have to admit, I have been the Reactive Person most of my life. I have jumped from crisis to crisis trying to fix everyone and everything and it usually turns into a trainwreck. I never had a problem finding a job – I would take the first one that came along. I always was a bit impulsive.

This illness has forced me to slow down and re-evaluate my life and my job and my family. My kids are all grown and working or going to college now. My Mom duties have diminished and I struggle with the Empty Nest syndrome as well. I am not sure what to do next. I pray and ask God for direction, and then sit here and wait. I have been out of work since last November and on Disability. It is very strange for me. I have worked my whole life on and off with kids. I struggle with trying to keep busy while living within the limits of what I can do currently. I have to fight off the spirit of depression and anxiety in the middle of this mess.

I am back in Therapy to learn some new tools for my toolbox for keeping myself well. We are body, soul, and spirit. I haven’t really taken the best care of myself. It was so easy to put everyone else first when you are the Mom.

How about you? Have you ever had your life interrupted? How did you respond?

God’s Word for You:

Fear not, for I am with you;
Be not dismayed, for I am your God.
I will strengthen you,
Yes, I will help you,
I will uphold you with My righteous right hand. – Isaiah 41:10 NKJV

isaiah_41_10_by_kc_lynne-d4iq28r

My Prayer for You:

Lord, I have absoluetly no idea why I am here. I was not ready for this interruption –  yet I choose to trust You in the proccess. Show me Your ways. Lead me in the path of understanding. I trust You Lord to lead me through this valley and on to the other side where my cup overflows and I sit in green pastures of peace, in Jesus Name.

Isaiah 55:8

 

 

 

 

 

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A Very Bumpy Bus Ride – My Lesson in Humility

I take so much for granted. I admit it. Sometimes I forget how far the Lord has brought me. How much He has blesssed me. I had a lesson in humility this past week. The brakes went out on my truck. I made it home, thank you Lord. But the light was on and no matter how much brake fluid I added, it leaked right out by the back tire.

My husband, God bless him, said he wanted to fix it instead of taking it in. He had done the front brakes earlier this year. So the fun begins. He took the tire off and it was drum brakes. Lots of springs and little pieces. Looked liked a nightmare to me, but he was game.

That was last Monday. Let’s say, there were parts to be bought, tools that were needed. And one very stubborn husband who was determined to get the job done. I admit it, I would have not even attempted it – way too many parts!

In order to get to work, my husband took me and dropped me off this past week. I forgot what a blessing having a running vehicle was. I took it for granted that it would always work and I could go where I wanted to go.

There was one night he got stuck at a job over 2 1/2 hours away. I got off at 5 and went outside. Then what? Here I sit. Most of my coworkers had left at 4:30 so I couldn’t ask them for a ride. I thought about flagging a car down, but hey, I never did do the hitchhiking thing.

So I sat for a moment. There was that initial moment of panic when I thought, “Oh no, I am going to be stuck here all night.” No Diana, you are not staying here all night. Then you run through your kids and your friends and wonder who can I call to come get me? I texted a few – all still at work. Ugghhh.

Then Holy Spirit opened up my mind. My work is on a bus route. I hadn’t ridden a bus in years. The last time was when I was living in a violent relationship and my husband at the time wouldn’t let me have my own car. It was a very troubling time in my life. But hey, a bus? Why not? I walked over to the bus stop about a block down. I called the number on the sign and asked when the next bus was coming by. Guess what? There was one in 10 minutes! Yeah!

The bus pulled up and I got out my wallet. I thought hey, I’ll go to the mall until my husband could come get me. I had no idea how much it was. I asked the driver – only $1.50 but I would have to get a transfer to get to the mall. Ok, here I go.

I sit down in the seat and look around. Across from me is a visually impared woman with a service dog.  The dog was laying down quietly at her feet and had a doggie jacket on that said, “Don’t pet me, I’m working.”  I smiled. The driver took off and as we drove through the city I thought, “Hey this isn’t so bad.” I can get accross town and not even have a car! I looked back at the woman. She was sitting quitetly enjoying the ride.

And then it hit me. I can’t imagine the hardship this woman went through to even get on the bus without her sight. Just trying to get to the store, or work, or wherever was so much harder for her than me. My heart dropped. Here I was all upset I didn’t have my truck and yet this same bus is how she got around everyday. Forgive me and my pride Lord. humility 2

The bus hit a bump, I grabbed for the rail. It seemed like we were going so fast.  This bus is so bumpy! We rode to the bus station and she got off. She walked over to the next bus as she was transferring too. Turns out it was the bus to the mall.

I followed her in as she sat down. This time I sat behind her and prayed that God would restore her sight. I thanked God for the lesson in humility and learning to be grateful for what I do have. And I asked God to bless her.

We arrived at the mall together. She got off and the dog tried to go back to the air conditioned bus. It was one of those 90 degree days. She stopped him, and they walked in together to the mall. The same place I went to hang out for an hour until my husband could get me.

Life lesson learned – things are not as bad as they seem. There are always others who have much more to deal with on a daily basis. Life is good, God is good, and I had a very enjoyable bumpy bus ride!

humility

 

Pine Cones, Rusty Bells, Broken Snowmen, and One Antler Reindeer

Pine cones, Rusty bells, broken snowmen, and one antler reindeer – what? Oh, the lessons we learn along the way. Let me share a story with you.  This year was the first time in the past 3 years we got a real Christmas tree.  Last year I thought I would be ‘special’ and bought a Holly Bush. It died, and man those thorns are sharp, lol! And the years before I think we used my daughters fiber optic mini tree. At that time we had cats and didn’t want to fight the battle with climbing kitties. So for the last three years we have been using some of the shatterproof plastic ornaments.  This year was different.

We moved and had to get rid of the cats. Sad, but true. Anyway, we got a real tree. So Ms. D took out the real ornaments – the glass ones that had been packed away for 4 years. I can’t believe I found the box!  The other night the kids and I were decorating the tree while Bob made his famous Spaghetti sauce.  I did the lights and pearls – and let the kids put the ornaments on.  We still have 2 High School children at home. As they took out and hung the ornaments I took one of those ‘Mom Moments’ to sit back and watch and listen.  I realize I only have 3 more years until they are out of the house and on their own. So we moms hold onto these times and cherish them in our hearts.

I thought it would be the ‘pretty’ ornaments that they would remember. But no – it was the ones that were ‘less than perfect’ that they remembered and talked about.

The Rusty Bell – from Elementary School when all the kids got to watch “Polar Express” at school. I was working at the kids school that year as we started our family over again that year. Me and the kids out on our own.

The One Legged Snowman and One Antlered Reindeer – That was bought from a gas station for $1.  I couldn’t afford a pricey ornament that year. It was a last minute thing on Dec 24th and I gave it to them at the gas pump – no wrapping required.

 

The Pine Cone – “Ornaments on a budget” as my son said. But they remember these ones. Through the trials, through the tribulations, lives the memory of love – no matter what the cost.

 

My life lessons learned that night:

 

  1. Remember the simple things – they last.

  2. Just because it’s broken doesn’t mean it doesn’t matter.

  3. Cherish the moments. Hold these things in your heart.

“Mary kept all these things to herself, holding them dear, deep within herself.” (Luke 2:19 MSG)

 

 

Life Lessons from a Teen Driver

I recently had the pleasure of helping my teen daughter get her final hours of drive time in before she got her drivers license. She took the class and did some drive time with the teacher, but us parents get to help out too, especially with the night driving. Yeah, nothing like handing over the keys right? Anyway, here are my observations from the passenger seat. Got me thinking about the bigger picture and the types of people we all meet on this journey called life.

 

LIFE LESSONS  FROM A TEEN DRIVER

1. The Diversions
Keep your eyes on the road and look forward not back. Don’t pay too much attention to the guys behind you. There will be people who follow too closely, who will tailgate you trying to make you go faster. Ignore them. They are diversions.

2. The Harassers
There will be followers and not all of them are friendly. Some just want to harass you so they follow you around. If the enemy can get you to keep looking in your rear view mirror, you will lose your focus, cross the line, and get pulled over. And you may not make it home. Ignore the harassers.

3. The Time Stealers
Be careful who you allow to sit in the passenger seat. There will be some people who want to just drive them around for no reason. They are the time stealers. They lie, cheat, steal, and come up with all sorts of reasons you need to drive them around. Only there is no fruit. No good comes of it, and you only end up more frustrated. Don’t let just anyone sit beside you – be careful.

4. The Tormenters
Not everyone gets to park in your driveway. These people like to torment others with their presence. The Narcissists, the Jezebels, the Fakers. They barge right into your life and try to take over. They have no compassion and no respect for anyone other than themselves. They are not your friends, even if they brag on about you. They may smile at your face, but there is a knife behind their back. They would love to see you fail.

5. The Gossipers
Beware of who you let in the backseat of your car. Yes, the backseat drivers. They criticize you for everything you do, all while you are trying to drive. They tell you where to go and how to get there. Bossy, condemning, and controlling people like to sit in the backseat. It’s their way or the highway. And they want to drive your car – from the backseat. They don’t want to take responsibility for their lives or happiness, they just want to criticize yours.

6. The Real Friend
They are out there. And they want you to succeed. Let them in. They are the ones who will listen, pray for you, and help you on your journey. They would ride with you anywhere, anytime just to be with you. They like your company and it doesn’t really matter where you go – as long as you are travelling together.

Stop Weeding the Thistles

Stop weeding the thistles? Really?  I had this illustrated to me just this week. Guess I needed to hear it twice in order to sink in lol!

MY LESSON IN THISTLES #1

This is a picture of our garden – well, what was supposed to be our garden. This year ‘life’ happened and we never got a chance to plant it. Oh well. Life is good. So we are giving the land a rest I guess.

For Mother’s Day my two youngest gave me a lavender plant. I would love to raise lavender and plant a whole field of it. So I went to the library and did some research. It does grow here in WI, but it is kind of picky about soil. Anyway, about a month ago I took the small potted plant and put it up in the garden area. I thought hey, it will sink or swim, right? I didn’t go check it. I didn’t even go water it. God – if you want it to grow, it will grow. I left it alone for about a month, well ok, two.

Two days ago I went to see if it made it or not. I really wasn’t expecting it to grow. After all, I didn’t do anything to help it. Can you imagine my surprise when I saw this?

 


Dont pull the thistles

Not only had it grown it had tripled in size! Despite all the thistles growing around it. Despite all my lack of attention – it still grew! I guess God really does know how to make things grow – even when I don’t cooperate!

 

MY LESSON IN THISTLES #2

We have these hostas that we got from my mother-in-law about 8 years ago. When I first got married, we planted JAM Buildingsome at our church, then it was Summit Baptist. Bob and I got married at that church a while back too. We fed and watered them while we went there. Long story short, the Pastor left to go to another church in TX, and the church closed. It was vacant for 3 years. Bob and I moved to another town, and hooked up with some old friends and started with JAM (Janesville Apostolic Ministries) about a year ago. Another long story, short – JAM bought the old Summit Baptist Building. Yeah – really!

And guess what – the hostas were still there. Again, they have been ignored for at least 3 years. They were very overgrown with weeds so the boys thought they would kill the weeds. They bought the spray stuff and sprayed around the hostas. Some of the weed killer leeched in the soil and some of the good hostas died. And many were damaged.  All because we were trying to kill the weeds.  Overkill the weeds and the good ones get hurt too.

I wonder how that applies to us and our church family? Hmmmm…I remember a good book and a great story…

Hostas

 

He told another story. “God’s kingdom is like a farmer who planted good seed in his field. That night, while his hired men were asleep, his enemy sowed thistles all through the wheat and slipped away before dawn. When the first green shoots appeared and the grain began to form, the thistles showed up, too.

“The farmhands came to the farmer and said, ‘Master, that was clean seed you planted, wasn’t it? Where did these thistles come from?’

“He answered, ‘Some enemy did this.’

“The farmhands asked, ‘Should we weed out the thistles?’

“He said, ‘No, if you weed the thistles, you’ll pull up the wheat, too. Let them grow together until harvest time. Then I’ll instruct the harvesters to pull up the thistles and tie them in bundles for the fire, then gather the wheat and put it in the barn.’”  (Matthew 13: 24-30 MSG)

MY LESSON LEARNED:

Stop weeding the Thistles Diana.

Stop worrying about all the people in your life that are bristly and not doing what they should be doing.

God has this under control.

It is His garden girl.

He is the Master Gardener.

Jesus is the vine.

God gets to weed His own garden.

It is not my job to weed them out.

Trust God and focus on the lavender – it will bloom, and you will get 30,60, 100 times over in the harvest.

Thank you Jesus!

lavendar