Thu, 06 Jun 2019 22:07:38 +0000 en-US hourly 1 Journey Part 4 /2018/05/07/my-journey-part-4/?utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=my-journey-part-4 Mon, 07 May 2018 23:55:33 +0000 /dmgroup5/?p=140 Continue reading "Journey Part 4"]]> My Journey part 4

As I get older humor is even more important as I seem to do more crazy things.  Luckily, I have a smart car that won’t let me lock my keys inside and has a GPS to keep me from getting lost!  One day the car may lock me out, “I’m not letting you back in until you wise up.”  I have my bike for back up.

Your tasks at times will seem overwhelming.  Rely on your faith, which is a force even stronger than knowledge, power or skill.  There is nothing God cannot do.  Take courage and keep going.  Seek God’s guidance.  Surprises will happen.  Seeming defeats can become victories when you keep moving forward.

Two times when I lost my job, I felt terrible at first and anxious.  Both times I got better jobs, better pay, and met more great people.  The times between jobs tested my faith and my ability to manage my time.  I focused on what I could do, listened to advice from people who knew the process and some going through the same thing, and forced myself to take actions like picking up the phone to make calls.

Notice the everyday things like the smell of coffee, the first tulips of spring, when the robins return, your comfortable chair, tasty food, and more.  Enjoy music even if you think it is played too loud.  Laugh with your friends and family.  Laugh at yourself.  You will do some silly things like forget why you went to that room and where you left your keys.

By nature, I am a serious person.  It has taken work to develop my humor and it has been worth it.   I used to get upset about trivial stuff like someone being late.  I learned to take a book or magazine with so I could read while I waited.  Now my iPhone does the trick.

We live in a beautiful country and world.  You can travel to many places.  Travel can be stressful so focus on the fun of it to reduce that stress.  Cars will breakdown and planes will be late.  It is not the universe against you.  Keep a perspective on the rough spots.  The rewards of seeing interesting places and meeting interesting people is much greater than the rough spots.

I have visited all 50 states and several countries.  We lived in different states from my grandparents.  I attended 4 different schools in 3 states.  As kids we took so many road trips and learned to read maps.  “Are we there yet?”  What a brat I was some of the time.

“I know for sure that to be present with yourself is the most important gift you can have.  Appreciate now, so that the next hour and the next year don’t slip away unnoticed.  Every moment matters.”  Oprah

This is moment is all you are guaranteed.  Be present in it instead of worrying about what is coming or about what happened in the past.  I learned this the hard way and missed so many moments.  Really days and weeks of lost time.

I would be planning the next party, rides to various events, next vacation, dentist appoints, etc. Those may be necessary tasks, but I would get caught up in them instead of playing with my kids.  Luckily, I have a second chance with my grandchildren.

Journey Part 3 /2018/04/07/my-journey-part-3/?utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=my-journey-part-3 Sat, 07 Apr 2018 23:43:33 +0000 /dmgroup5/?p=129 Continue reading "Journey Part 3"]]> My Journey Part 3

As a teen, I considered studying to be a minister.  I thought that was the way to share my faith and help others.  It is one way.  A powerful way.  It is not the only way.  I chose to get married at 19 instead.

It can be a challenge to bear fruit at work or with a difficult neighbor or relative.  For example, over the years I worked for some excellent bosses and a few where we did not work well.  Once in a mid-year job evaluation my boss told me I asked too many questions.  I was new to the job and was given only sketchy direction.  What I eventually realized was that my boss did not know the answers to my questions and was struggling in his own job.  I asked other people my questions to get the job done.  We got along much better after that.  I used my fruits of understanding and analyzing the situation for win/win.

What you see as the end of the road, is only a bend in the road.  Keep going.  Try different roads.  I often take the road less traveled.  That has made my life more interesting from the jobs I’ve had to the people I’ve met.

What if I had stayed a secretary instead of taking the foreman job in the factory?  What if I had not had children?  What if…  I made mistakes like going to work for one of my last companies.  The boss who hired me, retired about two months later.  The next boss and I never “clicked”.  I liked my co-workers and the job, but that was not enough.  Until I was no longer there, I did not realize how much that job hurt my health.

Your life stretches out before you.  Some decisions will affect your remaining life and others will be temporary.  Whatever your focus, find things to enjoy every day, week, and year.  Be present in your own life.  Yes, goals and plans are good.  Yet don’t allow your focus to be so much on them that you miss life in each day.

I read once that the week-end is only 2 days of a 7-day week.  Don’t just live for 2 of 7 days each week.  I decided then to each week do something interesting during the week.  Sometimes that was joining the church choir.  Or attending a seminar or play.  Or helping at Girl Scout meetings.  Or teaching a college class.

Enjoy your coffee or your choice of beverage.  Eat tasty food.  Your health is worth it.  Take time for friends and good books.  Have interesting events during the week, not just on weekends.  Your choice.

Don’t take yourself so seriously.  Laugh a lot.  Including laughing at yourself because you will do and say silly things.   I still test my car every few months by trying to lock my keys inside.  She just beeps at me.  She also beeps if I try to leave my keys inside.  Some day she may just lock me out.  “Not letting you in until you wise up!”  Thank goodness for the clicker when she is lost in the store parking lot. Laugh.

Life can be serious.  Your work can be serious.  But keep things in perspective and balance.

Journey Part 2 /2018/03/12/my-journey-part-2/?utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=my-journey-part-2 Mon, 12 Mar 2018 22:28:00 +0000 /dmgroup5/?p=106 Continue reading "Journey Part 2"]]> My Journey Part 2

Years ago when my son was very sick.  It was sudden and scary.  I called it a wilderness journey from the beginning because I knew we could not avoid it.  It was unknown territory.  The length of the journey was uncertain, but we knew it would end.

We could not take a detour or ignore it.  It had to be faced and actions taken.  It could not be rushed.  The rest of life went on – work, school, church, buying groceries, cooking meals, and doing dishes.  The illness was always there.  I know his experience was tougher than mine.  Yet it was hard as a parent to see my child ill and not be able to take it away.  Even take it into myself.

Luckily my faith muscle was strong from years of prayer, Bible study, and friends.  We spent so much time together in those months of doctor visits and hospitals. I was grateful for the blessings in that time, in spite of the heaviness of the reason.

“Lord God, you have called your servants to ventures of which we cannot see the ending, by paths as yet untrodden, through perils unknown.  Give us faith to go out with good courage, not knowing where we go, but only that your hand is leading us and your love supporting us; through Jesus Christ our Lord.  Amen.”

ELW Evening Prayer for Vision (based on Hebrews 11:8-10 (received at a women’s retreat)

Good things happened during wilderness time as well.  My boss allowed me to work varied hours and the job was interesting.  The evening college classes I taught went well.  We trusted the doctors and the results were good.

The best venture for me has been as a mom.  When we were first married, we agreed that we did not want children.  It was 1970 and we believed the atomic bomb could drop at any time so why add to the population?  In my mid-twenties, the proverbial “clock” started ticking for me.   I love my children.  I knew that my mom adored and loved me.  What a blessing she was to me and I still miss her yet feel her spirit so often.  But it wasn’t until I had children that I really understood that love more deeply.

We all bear different types of fruit.  What fruit will you bear?  This is how people know your faith and your character.  The people we meet, even briefly may being bearing heavy burdens so a kind word from us or a smile can briefly lighten the load.