Saturday, November 30, 2013
1. According to my children, furlough is like vacation but you still have to do school. It does feel like vacation getting to see people we haven't seen for two years, eating at restaurants we have never tried, and watching a movie in the theatre. On the other hand, we still have to do school and keep up with our other obligations.
2. Some places actually feel like home. Coming back to the states, I wondered if any place would feel like home. Fort Worth has felt like home for us. We were surprised. This is where W and Big D were born. This is where we lived for 14 of our 21 years of marriage. This is where we grew in our faith and made deep friendships as a family. It has been good to have a place that feels like home to rest and regroup.
3. We can't see everyone. There are so many people we wanted to see in these five months. Right now we are in Florida and I had hoped to see a couple we had worked with overseas. Time with extended family was more needed though. Overall our family is introverted so we need to balance that with our time with others. Some days we need to just push through it and be more social, and others days step back and regroup. It's a balance that we are still trying to figure out.
4. It is encouraging when people say that they are praying for you. I realise that we only do what we do by the grace of God and the prayers of His people. I am reminded of it more this month as I intercede for team members who are ill, planes that are broken, and visas that need to be granted. I am inspired to do a better job of praying for others because of the prayers of others for me.
5. I love to hear what my teenagers are thinking. This takes work, patience and a lot of prodding. Last week as part of their school, I had them give their testimony. I had tears in my eyes as I heard them share about their walk with God. We need to talk about faith and what God is doing in our lives more often.
6. I am an ISTJ (introverted, sensitive, thinking, judging). Supposedly my personality is similar to Aragon in Lord of the Rings.
7. I need to verbalise more what I am feeling. Often I will internalise too many things. There are times it is important to just let things go. It's no big deal. Other times I need to speak up more for my sake than anyone else's. Of course, my words still need to be seasoned with grace which is where it can get tricky. I am not always known for my grace but keeping the communication lines open is important.
8. Stretching is really important for my alignment. I have been seeing a chiropractor for a sore hip and learning that tight muscles are partly to blame. This month I have been working harder at stretching daily and keeping active. So far this trip, my hip is only hurting just a bit so I think I am making progress. Sitting in the car and sleeping in different beds seem to make it worse. Hopefully by the time we head back, I will be able to maintain my stretching and keep aligned.
This month, W and I are reading through Emily Freeman's book Graceful. I wish I could have read it as a junior in high school. I am linking up with Emily at her blog Chatting at the Sky on the things we learned in November.
Friday, November 29, 2013
This past month, I have enjoyed reading books from the library but not really the pressure of getting them read by a certain date. Now I am back reading mostly from my kindle as we travel, and I am trying to read more non-fiction or fiction that has been on my kindle for a long time. I also enjoyed some conversations about books with friends and what they are reading this month. Now my to-read list is even longer. Here are a few quotes from my reading this month.
From Fil Anderson. "Expectations are our subtle attempts to control God and manipulate mystery."
For those days when I am feeling judgemental from Ann Voscamp at A Holy Experience in her post How the Hidden Dangers of Comparison are Killing Us.
"Walk through life with a measuring stick- and your eyes get so small you never see God."
On determining in my heart to seek God from II Chronicles 12:14 "Rehoboam did what was evil because he did not determine in his heart to seek God."
Some words I want to share with my students from Outliers by Malcolm Gladwell.
"We sometimes think of being good at mathematics as an innate ability. You either have "it" or you don't. But to Schoenfeld, it's not so much ability as attitude. You master mathematics if you are willing to try."(246)
"Outliers are those who have been given opportunities-and who have had the strength and presence of mind to seize them."(267)
An ouch that I relate to from Graceful by Emily P. Freeman
"Character is about who you are. Reputation is about who people think you are. I have cared more about who people think I am than who I really am."(50)
From No Other gods by Kelly Minter
"Our choices, behaviour, and actions are an outflow of our status as children of God. When we get it the other way around-doing in order to gain status-we become fatigued and frustrated."
A quote from Ronald Reagan in the Man in the Middle by Timothy S. Goeglein
"Freedom is not something to be secured in any one moment of time. We must struggle to preserve it every day. And freedom is never more than one generation away from extinction."
Also from the Man in the Middle referring to Michael B. Mukasey.
"He said that courage should be remembered as "the highest public virtue because...courage is the one virtue that guarantees all the others; without it, all the others are useless."
What I want my life to be like from James chapter 3:
"Real wisdom, God's wisdom, begins with a holy life and is characterised by getting along with others. It is gentle and reasonable, overflowing with mercy and blessings, not hot one day and cold the next, not two faced. You can develop a healthy robust community that lives right with God and enjoy its results only if you do the hard work of getting along with each other, treating each other with dignity and honour."
What are some quotes from your reading this month?
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Wednesday, November 27, 2013
So today as I am overwhelmed by the abundance in my life, I am thankful but I am also mindful of those in need. I pray that God will not only provide for those who are lacking food, shelter, clean water, and Jesus. I pray for those who have abundance but are lacking the most important thing-Jesus that they will find Him.
Dear God, Thank you for all things great and small. Forgive me my complaints and how often I take this blessing for granted. I have never went to bed hungry or without proper shelter. I have always had more than I need. I don't deserve it just like I don't deserve your salvation. Thank you for giving me your Salvation and much more. In Your Son's Name, Amen