Monday, December 26, 2011

~Motivational Monday~ my gift to you

Yes - I know it's Tuesday
But most of us have been off work and actually had a long weekend.  Tuesday is our Monday this week.  First day back to the grind and even though it's a short week, for some reason, they always seem harder to me!

So - here's a little inspiration for the week!
My Christmas gift to you  :)

I hope everyone had a wonderfully happy and joy filled holiday Christmas weekend.  I must say, Z and I must have been extra good this year because we were abundantly blessed!!!!  And I'm not talking just gifts here - I mean, the good stuff.   Love.  Joy.  Peace.  Family.  Friends.  Blessings all around.

I was approached over the holidays by someone asking how I'm doing.... and after all I've been through, how I'm able to stay so positive?
Truth of the matter is this..

I can choose to lay in bed every night and drown in self loathing about what I have done wrong or how I've been done wrong...
OR
I can choose to look back on the things that I did wrong, that brought me to the RIGHT place!
I can choose to look at all that I'm blessed with.
I can choose to look at all that my future has to hold!

I make that choice daily.

And so should you!

I hope that you looked at your life through the Christmas holiday and thanked God above for all you are blessed with.  I hope that you let yourself off the hook for just long enough to smile.  I hope that for Christmas you gave yourself a clean slate of forgiveness (for yourself AND others) so that you can start 2012 without any negativity held over from 2011!

That is what I wish for each and every one of you for Christmas!  :)



Saturday, December 24, 2011

Merry Christmas Eve

I just wanted to take a quick minute to wish every one a VERY Merry Christmas and remind you all....
Please remember the reason for the season.
This time of year we tend to get so caught up in the hustle and bustle and keeping up with who got what - that we lose focus of the true meaning and blessings of the Christmas season.

Today - tonight - tomorrow - some time over this holiday, do something selfless.  Not for the glory, but for someone else.  Stop focusing on the THINGS of this world and focus on the things of the heart!
There is something so much bigger out there than that iPad.


James 1:19-27

Listening and Doing
 19 My dear brothers and sisters, take note of this: Everyone should be quick to listen, slow to speak and slow to become angry, 20 because human anger does not produce the righteousness that God desires. 21 Therefore, get rid of all moral filth and the evil that is so prevalent and humbly accept the word planted in you, which can save you.  22 Do not merely listen to the word, and so deceive yourselves. Do what it says. 23 Anyone who listens to the word but does not do what it says is like someone who looks at his face in a mirror 24 and, after looking at himself, goes away and immediately forgets what he looks like. 25 But whoever looks intently into the perfect law that gives freedom, and continues in it—not forgetting what they have heard, but doing it—they will be blessed in what they do.
 26 Those who consider themselves religious and yet do not keep a tight rein on their tongues deceive themselves, and their religion is worthless. 27 Religion that God our Father accepts as pure and faultless is this: to look after orphans and widows in their distress and to keep oneself from being polluted by the world.


Tonight, in honor of Jesus' birth and in the spirit of giving, I (following the example of a friend) went to Walmart, went in and bought a gift card, and then staked out the parking lot, patiently waiting for a tug leading me down the path I should go.  I found a lovely family, politely walked up and handed the mother a gift card and wished them a Merry Christmas - and walked away.   The little girl with them softly said "awwwww...." as I was walking away.   And with that - I was gone.
Tonight - I will say a special prayer that the family will be blessed a special way this year.

From there - I went on to purchase a gift for an anonymous person that I pray for regularly.  This gift will arrive and never be acknowledged.  But I will pray tonight that this gift does not go unused or unanswered.  It was delivered with a special dose of love and prayer.  Special blessings to this person and family.

I hope that you all stop and remember how blessed each and every one of us are - in our own individual way.
Wishing you all a VERY Merry Christmas
I am VERY thankful for my savior's birth, death and resurrection.

I.  am.  BLESSED.

Sunday, December 18, 2011

~Motivational Monday~ Keep Dreaming...

(or Tuesday, I'm a little late!)

So I took a little time away from my blog.  Not because I don't love you all and not because I don't need this blog.  But because I needed a mini vacay from my brain and all my thoughts and analyzing!

And now I'm back....
so fresh and so clean clean  :)

Lots of people have checked in on me over the past several months.  (some have been checking for longer than I realized!)  Lots of friends have left me with kind words, prayers, even little gifts here and there to let me know that everything is gonna be alright.
People keep asking how I am.
People keep saying they are sorry for what I'm going through.
I'm so VERY VERY lucky and thankful for ALL your kind words and support and thoughts and prayers.
I truly truly am.

So here is what I want you all to know.
I'm ok!  :)
and I'm just gonna keep on dreaming! BIG!!  :)

Someone told me recently that they were going to have to stop reading my blog because it was too sad.   I told them - it's not sad, it's HOPEFUL!  (I mean... it IS right?!)  And that person said "you are one resilient individual"
Thing is.......I choose to be!

You see.... people go through trial and heartache every day.  We are all VERY good at hiding it.  But trust me, the amazing thing about me writing here is the feedback I get in return.  Not just people supporting me, but people asking for support and prayer from me.
People - THAT is what life is all about!!!
Not pretending to be something that your not!
Not pretending you have the BEST life out there!
Not putting on a face so that everyone envies your life above everyone else!
It's not our job or our RIGHT to make others feel inadequate.
People do it to make themselves feel better.  And trust me, it makes you NO BETTER!
Get down off your high horse and open your heart and look around.

Yes.  I'm honest!
Yes.  I'm an open book!
I will tell you the truth.  I will tell you details that maybe most wouldn't.
I have nothing to hide.
Am I perfect?  Absolutely not!  But I do my best every day to make someone around me feel loved.
Have I been hurt?  yes.
Will I give up on people?  No.  Never

I had faith in a man and a marriage that let me down.
But guess what.... as much as it broke my heart going through - I look back now and I realize God saved me.  He saved me from walking down a LONG road that would have only gotten worse.
I don't believe in divorce.  I don't think God predestined me to BE divorced.  But I do think that people make decisions and choose paths against God's will (infidelity, lying, cheating, disrespecting, dishonoring) that are out of our control.  And for that reason, judge me if you will, but for that reason I DO believe that divorce is sometimes used to save one life because another is gone astray.  Rather than two falling down, at least one chooses to be saved.

I looked back one night at blogs I posted after I got married, and the fact of the matter is... as much as I loved him and believed in us.... I couldn't make him love and respect me the same.
Yes he will go on and tell people I was a hateful bitter woman and no one will ever live up to my expectations, and yes in the beginning I wanted to shout what he did to me from a mountain top and defend myself.  Yes.  There is ALWAYS an ugly side in us that wants to look better than the other person.
But here is what I have learned through all of this....

“Forgiveness does not change the past, but it does enlarge the future.” ~Paul Boese

I forgive and move on.   And frankly - I'm just done talking about the PAST and the pain and the regret and the mistakes.  I have forgiven not just him, but MYSELF also.
And for that - the door to my future is happy and positive and WIDE OPEN!


Will I find love again with a man?  maybe!  :)    I have faith!
And if I don't find it in one man, I will find it in ALL the world all around me  :)

"All you need is 20 seconds of insane courage and I promise you something great will come of it"

Here is my challenge to you ALL for the week!!!!!
Christmas is just around the corner - right?!  Everyone is caught up in the hustle and bustle of gift buying and the commercialism of what Christmas has become.
I read something on facebook tonight that someone did  - and it inspired me!
I am therefore passing this along to inspire EACH and EVERYone of you!!

Here is her post........

"I told myself I was going to bless somebody today. I bought a gift card while at Walmart...walked up to a complete stranger & said Merry Christmas. She looked at me like I shocked her. I told her I don't know if she needs it or not, if she doesn't to pay it forward to somebody that does. She thanked me, we hugged and I walked away. I received a blessing today as much as her.♥"
I challenge each of you to do this very thing this week!
Please please share any feedback or blessing you share or receive in this endeavor!

TRULY INSPIRING!  :)

Tuesday, December 6, 2011

On a white horse?? nahhhhhh

Watched a movie ...
put some things into a new perspective.
Not really new for me, just a reaffirmation of sorts!

Remember as little girls (boys.... you know the story too) we all dreamed of the "Cinderella" story... our prince riding in on a white horse and sweeping us off our feet and riding off into the sunset happily ever after.
Yeah - ok - we believed that maybe yesterday when we were very young.
But then we got older; we watched movies like Pretty Woman and believed in our modified grown up "Cinderella" story.  A rich handsome man would come rescue us from our hard life and take care of us and we would live happily ever after.

WHERE ladies did we get so darn preoccupied with NEEDING a man to RESCUE us!!!!!!
....stupid Disney movies!!!!!!!!!

But I mean... really... as we get older - do you REALLY believe that is the way things happen?!!  And in all honesty - do you really truly WANT that?
My mom told me once, as women, we should never get ourselves into a situation that if something happened, you couldn't take care of yourself.
My interpretation:  never depend SOLELY on another person... financially OR purely for your happiness.

#1 - be happy with you FIRST
#2 - always be prepared for the worst.  Don't EXPECT it.... but be prepared.   Speaking from experience, you never know how dependable that Prince will be!!!!!

I am one of those crazy girls that STILL believes in true love!  I do.
EVEN after having my heart shredded to bits and being disappointed like I never imagined.
Even after that.....
I'm one of those girls that still believes...... that still hopes........  one of those that CAN, and DOES, still sit down and watch a good love story and STILL believe that YES - there are men out there capable of loving!

I don't NEED a prince.  I would like a genuine honest trustworthy caring man....
but I don't NEED him to sweep me off my feet.  Just love me for ME.

I don't NEED someone to take care of me.  I would like someone to help take care of US...
but I don't NEED him to put me on a pedestal every day, just respect me as his partner.

So I'm watching this movie....
honestly having NO IDEA what I'm in for - and to be honest - I was pleasantly surprised.

"Friends with Benefits"  (Justin Timberlake and Mila Kunis)
Based on the previews, it looked funny.
(plus - hello - it had JT shirtless!  LOL)

So I'm watching and a scene comes up (I'm not ruining the movie for you.....) where Mila and her mother are discussing "prince charming"
and I felt just like it was me and my mom... sitting there having the same conversation!!!!!

MOM:  "We all have our prince charming - you just have to know it when you see him!"

DAUGHTER:  "Mom, it's PRINCE CHARMING - we should just KNOW"

MOM:  "YOUR prince charming is not going to RESCUE you with a horse and carriage - that's not who YOU are!!  You're looking for a man to be your PARTNER... to take on the world WITH you!"

"You gotta UPDATE your fairy tale!".

Boooyahhhhh
my movie... my character.... my fairytale!
LOVE IT!  :)

I remembered that I DO believe in true love  :) 
always have... always will... even if it's not for me...

Monday, December 5, 2011

This is my... ME

People ask me all the time, "why do you blog"
"WHY do you do it?"  "Why do you put so much of yourself out there?"
I think I finally found the answer to that question tonight.

I always say that this is where I heal.
This is where I vent.
This is where I come to spill myself.
And I do it to heal me - but to help others also.
Someone somewhere could be going through what I'm going through right now at this very moment; if one word or one line of my SELF I share touches someone... well then it is all worth it in the end.

Tonight  - I think I have discovered the true meaning of my blog.

It's where I go to be ME when I just need to be me.
This is where I go to find ME when I just need to rediscover me.
And this is where I go to share ME when someone else is hurting and needs me.

When everything around me turns into a whirlwind of chaos and I'm tossed up and down and round and round and tossed about.....
I come here.
I sit down on my couch or my bed... just me.... my laptop and ME!
And I spend time with ME.
My hopes
My dreams
My prayers
My wants
My needs
My joy
My sorrow
My pain
..... my thoughts.......

It's where I let it all out.  It's where I am the most honest.  it's where I am the most ME.
It's where I come to put my feet back on the ground.  It's my safe place.

I have.... NO, wait.... I am BLESSED with a wonderful family.  And I am BLESSED with wonderfully awesome friends that are always by my side no matter what.
They will ALL tell me when I'm right and rejoice when things are good - and they won't hesitate to tell me when I'm WRONG... and cry when things are bad.

But it is HERE that I come when everything is going good - to share my joy with the world.
And it is here that I come when everything is upside down - to share my pains and sorrows with the world.

But mostly - I come here to rediscover me.
And to me - that is priceless.

So I want you to know - to everyone who comes here and everyone that shares just a little piece of me, I am grateful... I am thankful.... I am BLESSED to honestly say...
Welcome to my safe place.
Welcome to my place of getting to know me.
Each of you that reads my posts, whether it be occasionally or religiously, and have ever taken any piece of what I have shared and it made you smile, or it made you laugh, or it made you see your own life in a new perspective...

I am BLESSED to be invited into your world when you click that link that shows up somewhere in your world of technology.
I am honored to share a tiny piece of me, the real raw.... "this is ME" world with you.

Whether you EVER speak a word to me about my blog or about anything I share.... or whether you email me, or "like" me on facebook, or choose to send an email sharing a little piece of you back...
no matter what...
I'm grateful to have this place to come back to...
and I'm thankful for each and every one of you that read and agree; or read and disagree.

"You might just be one person to the world; 
but to one person, you might just be the world."

Saturday, December 3, 2011

Reason for the pain...

Everybody struggles and has pain. EVERYBODY!! God recycles and redeems the pain the very moment we use our experience to help someone else through their pain.  I read this from a pastor's facebook page that I follow and it was like a million light bulbs went off all around me!!  :)


Divorce.  
What a painful word.  
What a painful experience.  
And it happens every day all around us.

Some simply because people literally look at marriage as a trial run these days.  Some people literally take it so lightly that going in, they think, if it doesn't work out - well I'll just get a divorce and start over.  No big deal.
But some of us... some of us still think of marriage as the ultimate commitment of love here on earth.
Some (few) of us wait and search and fall in love thinking this is IT for me.  We give our hearts completely to the one we plan to grow old with.
And sometimes... we get hurt.   Sometimes, well... we simply pick the wrong person to trust our heart to.  OR, maybe we give our heart... loving and caring and having faith that we are on the same path and have the same goals and we believe that that person loves us just the same.
And sadly... sometimes things change.
And when they change... or we feel deceived, there is nothing you can do to take that back.
When the one person that you think will NEVER hurt you, acutally HURTS you... you may not stop loving them, but you have to face the fact that the path that person has chosen is no longer the path the two of you chose together.


I don't belive in divorce... as a general rule.
But when I say that I simply mean, I do not believe that it should be used as an escape for when the going gets tough.
But I do believe that when you have walked down a road with someone who no longer puts your future as a couple as a first priority - sometimes.. well... there is no other option.
When living right in God's eyes and upholding vows that you took together is NO LONGER the priority, and trust and hope and love are treated as though they mean nothing anymore, I don't believe God's blessings are placed upon someone who chooses to purposely keep traveling down the path of pain and turmoil.
I don't believe that God intends anyone to stay in a relationship where you are continually beaten down or abused or taken for granted in any way.


And for that reason, my divorce hit me hard.


But when I read what I read tonight - It just gave me light.  It showed me purpose.
Do I think that God PLANNED and PURPOSED me to walk down an aisle with a man I loved just to end up divorced.
No.  I do not.
BUT I do believe that God uses EVERY experience that we go through to not only bless us, but to also bless those around us.
I do believe that no matter what you are going through... no matter how bad the pain; turning that around to use for good in His name is the ultimate gift and redemption that He gives us.


And for that reason..... I can lay my head down at night and truly sleep.
for that reason I can KNOW that God uses me every day.
He makes me stronger by bringing me through trials a stronger better person  (someone please tell God I'm strong enough....ha ha)
But more importanatly I believe he uses me EVERY day.
He uses things I have been through... the thoughts, the feelings, the emotions, the experience, the "live and learns" to shine light to all those around me.


And for THAT - I am thankful.
And for THAT - I am at peace.


I can let go and I can move forward with what is in store for me next.
And I can do so proudly and confidently  :)


Will I marry again?  who knows
But am I ok either way - Absolutely!

Why - because I know God has plans for me and he'll use me for whatever His will is, and as long as I know that - I know I will be blessed  :)

Sunday, November 27, 2011

Forgiveness - the KEY to survival

What is forgiveness?

To give up resentment of or claim to requital for; to cease to feel resentment against (an offender)

This seems to be one of the hardest concepts for our feeble human minds to comprehend.  Why?  Because everyone wants justification, vengeance, honor.... Revenge.
When someone wrongs us or hurts us in some way, our selfish pride feels some sort of obligation to hurt another in retaliation.  It's how human nature is.
Evil.
An eye for an eye...

So forgiving someone who has hurt us is hard.  It takes alot of love and faith.... and well... true soul searching and selflessness.  And it doesn't happen overnight.  Nor does it last overnight.  Most of the time, you have to forgive on a daily basis.  Remind yourself everyday that you have forgiven and let go of that pain and that need for self gratification.

The even harder thing about forgiveness is this....... you MUST forgive yourself.
People make mistakes and hurt us.  Yes.  But guess what.  We are HUMAN and we often make mistakes that hurt others along with our own selves.
At that point, you must make a point to forgive.  Not just yourself for hurting someone else (which is very important too... along with hopefully their forgiveness)
But the thing that stifles us most, is actually being able to forgive ourselves for being human.
We make mistakes.
We choose wrong paths.
We hurt people.
We are selfish.
We are resentful.
We are prideful.... oh how we are prideful.
And in that prideful persona, we put ourselves into a self inflicted bondage.
It's like our pride is so important to us that actually ADMITTING we were wrong or did wrong, is a life threatening blow to our ego.
Which gives us something to constantly hold over our OWN head.  And something we constantly feel the need to justify and "make up for".
We find ourselves over compensating in other areas of our lives in order to bury that mistake that we made.  If we make up for it in other ways, it justifies our wrong doing.

Truth of the matter is, without forgiveness of our OWN faults, you will never be happy with yourself.  And without being happy with yourself, you will never find TRUE happiness or contentment with anyone else either.  You will live a constant lie.  Habitually ridiculing and criticizing others in order to make you feel better about YOU.
"well.... at least I didn't do what HE did"
"at least I'm good at this...."
"at least I went to church last Sunday"
"at least 'so and so' likes me BETTER"
Constant rectification and justification and prideful indulgence - that I can assure you my friend will NEVER give you the peace you are so desperately looking for.

Some of you that read my blog are Christians and some are not.
Either way - you can take this to heart.
And if you have questions, comments, or opinions, please don't hesitate to share.
I read something last night that TOTALLY hit a chord with me.
It says this:
"If you ever cease to understand the value of repentance, (admitting you were wrong and asking for forgiveness) you allow yourself to remain in sin.  Repentance is a gift of God.  Our natural life can only be turned spiritual through sacrifice.  If we do not sacrifice the natural to the spiritual, the natural life will resist and defy the life of God in us and will produce CONSTANT TURMOIL.  God will not be involved in your natural lives as long as we continue to pamper and gratify it (sin, selfishness, and wrong doing) !"

People struggle every day with finding their place in the world.  Their niche so to speak.  Where they feel comfortable and can truly be at peace with themselves.  The fact of the matter is, if you have refused to forgive others or forgive yourselves and refuse to give up that PRIDE that you hold so dearly to.... God can not bless you and you WILL be in constant turmoil.

Romans 12:9-21
  9 Love must be sincere. Hate what is evil; cling to what is good. 10 Be devoted to one another in love. Honor one another above yourselves. 11 Never be lacking in zeal, but keep your spiritual fervor, serving the Lord. 12 Be joyful in hope, patient in affliction, faithful in prayer. 13 Share with the Lord’s people who are in need. Practice hospitality.
 14 Bless those who persecute you; bless and do not curse. 15 Rejoice with those who rejoice; mourn with those who mourn. 16 Live in harmony with one another. Do not be proud, but be willing to associate with people of low position. Do not be conceited.
 17 Do not repay anyone evil for evil. Be careful to do what is right in the eyes of everyone. 18 If it is possible, as far as it depends on you, live at peace with everyone. 19 Do not take revenge, my dear friends, but leave room for God’s wrath, for it is written: “It is mine to avenge; I will repay,” says the Lord. 20 On the contrary:
   “If your enemy is hungry, feed him;
   if he is thirsty, give him something to drink.
In doing this, you will heap burning coals on his head.”
 21 Do not be overcome by evil, but overcome evil with good.

I implore you today....... search your soul and find those bitter hurtful things you are harboring inside and let them GO! 
Search your soul for those things that you feel and do on a daily basis, that you justify and hold so dearly to... all for the pure reasoning of protecting that selfish pride.
Forgive those who hurt you.
Forgive yourself for hurting others.
But MOST importantly, forgive YOURSELF for being human and let go of your past.  Believe it or not YOU YOURSELF can NOT justify the mistakes or "make up for them".  You can only let them go and learn from them and start living life better rather than living life in constant turmoil to make up for wrong doing.
Ask God for forgiveness and know that if HE can forgive you, you CAN forgive yourself.
Let yourself off the hook.
We are human.
But we are saved by grace and we are FORGIVEN!


Wednesday, November 23, 2011

~Motivational Monday~ A Womans Prayer


A Woman’s Prayer


Dear Heavenly Father,

I confess that I have not always been as careful as I should’ve been with my heart.
From time to time, my desire for love has caused me to leave my heart in the wrong hands.

I now commit my heart into your hands for safe-keeping.

Please help me to stop being so impulsive with what you deem so precious. As I learn to celebrate Your love for me, let me learn from Your example what a bridegroom should really be like. Help me to never settle for less than what You desire for me. As I embrace You as the Lover of my soul, keep my affections in the haven of Your own heart. As I rest in Your love, make me more discriminating of those who approach me. I ask that You take over this area of my life. Keep me from those You know would hurt my heart.

I invite you to set a hedge around me and keep me from all who draw me into unfruitful relationships until the day you present me to the mate that You have selected for me.
Grant me the discernment to recognize him as he recognizes me. Cleanse me from the temptation to typecast the men I meet according to what I see. Help me to trust in Your knowledge and lean not on my own understanding.

I know that You know what is best for me; therefore I yield to Your choice.

In Jesus Name,
AMEN

Monday, November 21, 2011

The Journey

I was posed a question tonight... that I can't release from my mind?

~Do you think someone can just fall OUT of love?~

I can't seem to erase that question from my head OR come up with a really good answer...

So - for what it's worth - here are my thoughts...
WHAT DO YOU THINK???

Just for a moment, let's contemplate the love between a woman and a man.

First of all.... I don't think it happens over night.
Yes, I do believe there can be an initial attraction... SPARKS you would say.

And in that case, is it really "love" initially?  or JUST an attraction... a fascination... intrigue....
something that sparks that initial interest....
curiosity.

Second of all.... I think a series of choices have to occur that lead you down the path of love.
Everyone has a list of "criteria" if you will, that you are looking for.
It may be as simple as blue eyes, or just great eyes; or it may be as deep as a spiritual foundation.
But you have this list.  In your head.  Big or small, the "criteria" that you look for. (admitted or not!)
Once you feel you have found someone that meets your criteria, you make choices to get to know them.
And to let them know you.
You choose to show the real you or you choose to show them what you WANT them to see.
OR you decide they don't meet your criteria and you CHOOSE not to walk down that path.

This is where things get tricky.

Because I believe in the old saying, "Love is a Journey, not a Destination"
You begin to make choices.
What you will accept and what you want.
What you need and what you can live without.
Who you want to be.
......Because let's face it.
As we get to know each other, NOBODY is perfect and we ALL have baggage.  No matter what age we are and what our past may entail, we ALL have baggage.

So you begin a journey with someone you have now developed an interest in.
Time passes and you each learn about the other.
And I think depending on your openness and willingness, there is no set time on how long it takes to REALLY fall IN love!

But - once you trip and fall - are you IN IT FOR LIFE?  I mean - are you really?
Once you are IN - can you fall OUT?

Here's my answer.
YES.

Love IS a journey.  A journey of commitment, of promises, of a deep seeded fundamentally grounded DESIRE to enrich someone else's life.
A journey to put a smile on someone else's face, even before your own.
A journey of sacrifices.
A journey of compromises.
It's when you look at someone and they make you WANT to be a BETTER person.
A journey with someone who inspires you...  Someone who supports you...  Someone that you know no matter what will be standing beside you at the end of the day.... you above ANYONE ELSE.
It is a journey
A series of every day choices.

It's easy to roll over and say the words, "I love you"
but how hard is it to truly LOVE another individual enough to embark on that journey?!

Fact of the matter is - in today's selfish, self righteous, self indulging, self gratifying society... it seems to be the HARDEST journey there is to take and commitment to make.
Divorce and break ups and heart ache is all around us every day.
It seems to be MUCH easier to focus on SELF and check out of that journey you were so committed to on day one.


Love requires work.  It requires effort.  It requires nurturing.
And let's face it, whether it was real or not in the beginning, if someone checks out - it is because they made the CHOICE not to work or nurture that affection anymore.

Does that mean that you fell OUT of love?
You just happened to roll over one day and look at your significant other and think... "hmmm... I don't love you anymore"
NO - you fall out of love just like you fall IN love... a series of choices.  A series of events that place your significant other back in the pile with everyone else.  They are no longer your priority.  Their happiness is no longer your concern.  You didn't just trip and fall OUT of love, you made choices!  To cheat, to stray, to put someone else FIRST... to put your self first... you made choices!

Does that mean you never really loved at all?  You pretended from day one that you wanted this.  You pretended to be something your not or committed to something that you ... well...  you never really intended to commit to?  It's too hard.  It's too self-less...


In the end - does it really even matter?

Some of us fall OUT of love because of our own choices, and some of us HAVE to fall OUT because of others choices...

Either way - I do believe it is possible.
And it doesn't mean that love was never there.
It doesn't mean the journey wasn't started.
Just that for one or both, the choice was made that the journey wasn't worth continuing.

Broken promises and broken commitments.  They happen every day all around us.
Usually instigated by self serving, self gratifying, self motivating choices.

Don't be taken by empty promises and false pretenses.  Stand pure and wait for what God has in store for you and trust Him from there.
And know this... scars may remain from a love that you lost, but God will heal them and they will serve as reminders of what NOT to settle for next time.

Ephesians 5 : 6-7

6 Let no one deceive you with empty words, for because of such things God’s wrath comes on those who are disobedient. 7 Therefore do not be partners with them.

Song for the day!!!!  Peter Bradley Adams - The Longer I RunListen to the lyrics  (or read them below?)




When that blood runs warm with the warm red wine
I miss the life that I left behind
And when I hear the sound of the blackbird's cry
I know I left in the nick of time

Well this road I'm on's gonna turn to sand
And leave me lost in a far-off land
So let me ride the wind 'till I don't look back
And forget the life that I almost had

If I wander 'till I die
May I know whose hand I'm in
And if my home I'll never find
Then let me live again

The longer I run then the less that I find
Selling my soul for a nickel and dime
Breaking my heart to keep singing these rhymes
And losing again  (repeat)

Tell my brother please not to look for me
I ain't the man that I used to be
But if my saviour comes could you let him know
I've gone away for to save my soul

(Chorus repeat)

Sunday, November 20, 2011

~Motivational Monday~ My New Perspective

In honor of the week of Thanksgiving - I'm thankfully switching gears.

Putting on my new perspective you might say!

It was pointed out to me today that we should not only spend time being thankful for the things that we have been given and that God has blessed us with; but we should also take time to be thankful for the things that have been taken away... the things that God has saved us from.

I know firsthand, that when going through trials and tribulations it is so easy to turn around and blame others, or get MAD at God for not giving us what we want or giving it to us the way WE want it. 
Wow, it is so easy.  
The hurt and pain that we feel inside tends to overtake us and we lose perspective.  (how many times have I written about perspective?!)  We get so focused on the things we want and things that are important in this world.

I'm going through a divorce - it's no secret.
And I've been hurt and angry and confused... and well, 100 other emotions I can think of.

But today - I was reminded, that no matter what people say, no matter HOW people judge, no matter how the story is told and where fault lands, the fact of the matter is... quite frankly - I love you all, but I don't answer to anyone but my God.  And as long as in my heart I know that I'm following His will and I did right by Him, I am at peace.
I fought.  ME.  MYSELF... I fought to hold a marriage together.... when in fact, it was never my fight to fight.
I should have given this ALL to God long ago....
God sees a bigger picture.
And sometimes... he takes away.  And many times, that is beyond our human comprehension.

We are blessed with gifts from God.  And believe it or not, we are blessed when he takes away.
It may not feel like it sometimes, but I believe it to be true.  Because I do believe there is a bigger plan that God has in store.

So, in hindsight..... I looked back over the past year of my life today...
And I have so many things to be thankful for.

~I am thankful that I had to ability to go back to school this past year and GRADUATE~

~I am thankful that I made a career change at this point in my life and can now say I have a job I LOVE!~

~I am thankful for ALL of my family - I am TRULY blessed!~

~I am thankful for my friends - they have been my ROCK for years and abundantly so as of late~

~I am thankful that my daddy DID get to walk me down the aisle~

~I am thankful for my son and the wonderful young man he is growing up to be~

~I am thankful to say that I have loved and been loved~

~I am thankful for my parents and the way I was raised and the foundation they gave me to stand on~

and oddly enough....

~I am thankful for all the things I wanted in my life, that God saw fit to spare me from.  I am thankful for "unanswered prayers" that were truly answered in a way to protect me and keep me closer to him.~

~I am thankful that this past year has shown me things and taught me things that I might never have understood otherwise.~

~But most of all, I am SO thankful that this past year has brought my walk closer to Him.~

I am thankful that people judge me and talk about me and question why I'm different.  It means I stood for something... and that something is my GOD!

And I am MOST thankful that I ALWAYS know that His arms are around me and protect and comfort me when I need it the most!


Saturday, November 19, 2011

Back to square one

Today I'm sharing something I posted.....   well - long ago.
Thoughts, feelings, and emotions that I today - hold firmly to  :)
I hope you enjoy - but more than anything.... I hope you are inspired.
To give.
To LOVE.
To pray.
To trust in God - no matter WHAT the circumstances!!!!


Unconditional love is a term used to describe a love shared with someone regardless of the other's actions or beliefs.  It is comparable to the term "true love" which is used most often between lovers.  At the same time, unconditional love is frequently used to describe the love between family members, very good friends and also used to describe God's love for us through the forgiveness of Christ.

After a long intense (texted) conversation with a friend of mine recently, he asked me:  "Have u never had 100 percent true unconditional love?"  My response was - "other than my girlfriends & family, no."
Now - my girls and I definitely have an unconditional love for each other, but dating/relationship wise... no.  I don't think I have ever had a 100% shared unconditional love in any relationship.  (Thank God I'm still single then - right?!)  It seems one has always been more or less committed than the other, or one is looking for something more, or one is NOT looking to be serious... always something to break that bond.

Now - do I think I have LOVED unconditionally?  ABSO-freaking-LUTELY!!!!!!!  Every day of my life!  I just don't think it's ever been a mutually shared 100% love that was the same and REAL.  There are so many people that have passed through my life, some who still remain, that maybe I don't agree with and maybe I have had words with, and maybe, just maybe they turned their back and walked away from me.  BUT - I still contain so much love in my heart for them... sometimes it just pisses me off!  ;-)  BUT - at the same time, most days, I feel so lucky and blessed and I am so thankful for it. 
So in turn, I sometimes wonder if I was meant to just GIVE love and hope to those around me.  Like that is my gift from God... my big huge loving, forgiving, heart.  I can't even begin to tell you the number of times people have let me down or broken my heart.....but you know what's really weird and I have yet to figure out - I still to this day LOVE those people unconditionally.  6 months from the day you broke my heart, you could call me and ask for help and I'd be there.  I just can't NOT love or NOT give hope to everyone around me.  (i don't do it on purpose people....I can't help it!  ha ha)  I look at people and situations and I see hope..... (I don't always do that in my OWN life - but I'm VERY good at giving it to those I surround myself with!)
Now - don't get me wrong - I'm not saying I'm not WORTHY of being loved unconditionally OR that I am NOT loved unconditionally - it's just that the love is different with each I guess.  And in relationships, maybe I have been loved unconditionally but didn't share in it with the person.  I don't know. 

So I often wonder if my purpose here on earth is to go at it alone.  To love and give hope to those around me on this journey of life.   I was given a son by the grace of God to show me the REALMS of true neverending undying unconditional love......(because trust me, from one parent to another, no one can break your heart MORE than your own child - but we just keep on lovin them!)
I look at couples and I envy what they have.  I envy that bond that they have.  I envy them having someone to come home to at night.  I envy the touch of a man on the small of his wife's back.  ohhhhh - there are so many little things that people take for granted that I see.  I see them every day.  And they used to make me sad........they used to make me lonely.  They used to make me look at God and say "IT'S NOT FAIR!"
But no more.

Today (this is a work in progress people) I'm learning to be thankful for the gift God has given me.  I don't have to just share my love with one......I get to share it with everyone I meet.  Oh yeah - I have been and will again be let down & have my heart broken, but that's ok.  Because even when that person walks away, they will now have a piece of unconditional love - and even if they have never seen it or felt it before, I promise you - that they will never forget what it felt like.   =)
my footprints in the world..........

Thursday, November 17, 2011

Let the Son shine through

Even out of ruins, God always shows me light  :)
the silver lining if you will........

My last post was very hard.  That day was VERY hard.
BUT such is life.
We all have good days and bad days and days that are just a little harder to get through than others.
I am not special in that.
I guess the difference is, I don't hold in my emotions.  I don't hold in my feelings.
I may speak them, I may scream them, but most of all - I type them.... I SHARE them!!!
Someone told me once that our emotional selves are like refrigerators.  You have to clean your refrigerator out every now and then or you end up with a whole bunch of nasty spoiled and rotten food in there.  Well our emotional well being is the same way.  All of those feelings and emotions that you hold in.... if left sitting, they get stale and yucky and guess where that shows up... in your attitude.  You turn into a cold, bitter reflection of your true self.  You walk around so busy hiding your nastiness inside, that no one really sees the real true you.  You become that.... just an image.  Just a photocopy.  People see you... but they only see what you show them, what you WANT them to see, you know those "pictures" you hang on the outside of your refrigerator...  and then if God forbid, someone opens the door and gets a glimpse of what's inside - it's life threatening to your emotional well being.  So you slam the door and run away and hide.

I understand that some people are private.  Some people choose not to share.  Some people don't WANT people to see or know the real them because maybe it might mean that they have to see themselves where they truly stand too.  And ... well... I guess it's easier to just close the refrigerator door and hang pictures on the outside and pretend that all is well.

I am "what you see is what you get"
Do I share too much?  That has always been the question....

I get my answer almost every time I blog.
God did give me a gift.  And I choose to use it to His benefit, not my own.
And when I go down a dark and winding road and I come out at the end, sure, sometimes I look back and think WHY LORD.... WHY???
but only for a second....
He always answers.

My last post was very personal.
And I received several VERY personal emails yesterday from people who will remain anonymous that read my post and shared how much it helped them.  One with a past experience similar to what I'm going through and one who is going through it now.  And ironically, someone also who struggles in their beliefs and what I wrote yesterday really touched her too.   Not necessarily the divorce part, but the FAITH in God that I shared.  And I try to share in every post I share.

So when asked why I blog and why I share so much, my answer is two-fold.   First of all, it's my version of cleaning out my refrigerator.  I'm a very openly emotional, feeling and spiritual person.  And as I type, God speaks to me and THROUGH me.   And secondly, I do believe that there are people out there that struggle with things every day.  And if one little ounce of hope or God and what he has done in my life can be shared to help someone else, well.... I KNOW that God is working through me.  And when I know that - I know that no matter what is going on around me and no matter what walls are falling down, I know that God has a plan bigger than me.   Even out of ruin, God shines light.
For THAT I am thankful.

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Paralyzed

DEFINED :  to bring to a condition of helpless stoppage, inactivity, or inability to act

EXAMPLE :  ME

Today was the day.  The FINAL day.  The day of enlightenment for me.
The day all hope was killed.

He delivered signed Divorce papers to me last night.  Cold.  With no words.  No emotion.  Oblivious... 
all that was left was for me to sign and deliver to the attorney's office....
Time for me to ultimately close this chapter.... the chapter I never thought I would have to close.

But there they were - nonetheless - the papers... his signature on Divorce papers.. 
laying lifeless on the table.
Staring at me.
Mocking me.
Laughing at me.
Taunting me...
The very thing I never wanted.  The very thing I don't believe in.  The very thing I have literally fought tooth and nail to avoid, for.. well... quite some time now... long enough to watch too many bricks fall, and WAY too many bricks be thrown in my face.  Long enough that anyone else in my shoes would have been broken and walked away long ago.  But not me though.  The fighter.  The lover.  The girl that lives on passion.  Not the girl that believed in love.  Not the girl that believed in the man that I somehow thought broke down those protective walls I had built.  Not this man.  Not this man who LOVED me.

LOVE
DEFINED:  an emotion of strong affection and personal attachment.  In philosophical context, love is a virtue representing all of human kindness, compassion, and affection.
EXAMPLE:   what I THOUGHT my marriage entailed.

So I sat... paralyzed.  Not sure what to do.  Not sure how to move.  Not even sure WHAT my move should be.  So I just sat paralyzed... and stared at my life once again going down a road I never expected.   And the worst part is... I fought so hard against it and loved so deep and gave so much.   Yet here we are.  And there I sat... for hours... just wondering, reliving, WONDERING how it ever went so terribly wrong.
Paralyzed.
until finally sleep overtook me... where my dreams were also paralyzed.
Numb.

So today - I woke up, determined that a move had to be made.
Do I sit hoping... wishing... begging for change and love in return for my entire heart that had been given.
I just couldn't fathom that THIS.... THIS ROAD was the road God put me on to just dead end.
So I sent one final plea....
a text
that simply said "Are you sure this is what you want?"
To which I was lovingly greeted with....... "I'm sure."

Affection?  no 
Personal attachment?  no
Kindness:  no
Compassion?  no

Was it ever really LOVE?

And that was it.   Now I wasn't physically paralyzed; I knew where this had to go... 
but my heart was.  
I think it stopped for what seemed like an eternity.  And I grasped the fact that...... the love I gave and opened my heart to receive is gone.  Or was it never there?
Did I fool myself into believing that he ever really loved me?
I was so guarded.  And so careful.  And sooo... cautious
and my knight on a white horse slaughtered me.

Such is life I guess.

So I jump started my heart again and reminded myself that we all make choices.  Every day.  
EVERY DAY IN GRAY
Every day we are faced with gray; and you must choose....
right from wrong.  
Good from evil.  
Black from white.
What's important and what's not.
I have no control over anyone's choices but my own.
His choice has been made.
And in that second, so was mine.

It is time to heal.

The first step is the hardest... 
but worth it.  
And while others may be scared to step and take a chance and trust that God will be right there....
I refuse to be scared.

I know no matter what - I have stood by my faith and love and done everything I vowed to do.
Someone else's choices are out of my control.
God will be with me every step of the way!

Find a place inside where's there joy and the joy will burn out the pain.  ~Joseph Campbell~

What if I'm overtaken
What if I never make it
What if no one's there?
Will you hear my prayer?

When you take that first step
Into the unknown
You know that He won't let you go

SO WHAT ARE YOU WAITING FOR???



Monday, November 14, 2011

Live and Let Die



The beauty and the curse in this word is - God gave us all free will.

Do I believe God has a plan and purpose for your life?  YES!  Do I believe that God has great and mighty things to show you and give you and teach you throughout life?  Absolutely!  I do.
Do I believe that you may suffer hardships and pain along the way... sure.  That's how we GROW!  It's also how we LEARN!
Some of that is placed upon us - and some of it, we place upon ourselves.

The catch in that plan for you - is that tricky little thing he also gave us...... FREE WILL.
You know right from wrong, just as well as you know up from down.
Whether you were raised with a religious background or not - most people are born with a common sense of direction and decency.  You don't get up tomorrow and rob a bank, JUST because the law says it's wrong... you (hopefully) don't get up and rob a bank tomorrow because you fundamentally know it's wrong.  It's not YOUR money and you would be stealing from another.  The free will comes into play in whether or not you choose to use that common sense or just ignore it and carry on in your own blissful ignorance.  The free will is when you CHOOSE to block out that common decency you have inside you and ignore the fact that YOU stealing money has an affect on someone else.  It HURTS someone else.

So while free will is a gift, it can also be twisted into a curse..... JUSTIFICATION for OWN SELF exoneration!  ENTITLEMENT.  OH how entitlement runs rampant these days.  The world OWES you something so you justify the pain you inflict.  Someone hurt YOU - so you justify hurting them back.  Someone let you down so you use that anger and bitterness to in turn hurt someone else!

As we travel through this life, we all make mistakes.  We might wrong someone that hurts them intentionally.  Or we might wrong someone unintentionally.  And... unfortunately, someone else makes a choice that wrongs us.  ALL FREE WILL.

Here's the catch for me...... I read something earlier that really hit home with me.  (be patient, I'll share)
Sometimes I take wrong roads.  Sometimes I make wrong decisions.  Sometimes my focus or my pathway gets a little bit skewed and I get lost and off track for a day, month, months.... minute.  And maybe I make a decision that changes the course of my life (God's plan).  But after it's said and done, and I'm knocked off my horse and found sitting flat on my behind on the ground...... I have TWO CHOICES.   Get up and IGNORE the lesson I was just taught and get up and travel down that same road again.  (duuuhhhhhhhhh)  I know the outcome.  I KNOW it didn't work the first time, WHY in the world would I want to get knocked off again????   Or I can use my noggin and take note and learn from it.
So I usually choose to learn.

Here's where it gets even trickier..... what if someone ELSE makes a choice that effects me?  Someone else walked down the wrong path and dragged me with them (remember, I have free will too.... there I go walking right along beside them)  but regardless, THEY make the decision that ultimately knocks me right back flat on my butt.  And I'm left sitting..... wondering...... what just happened?  What did I do?  I thought I was doing the right thing....
And guess what - sometimes YOU ARE doing the right thing.  Sometimes you ARE on the right path.  And sometimes someone else trips up and falls... and oooops... they pulled you right down with them.???

AGAIN..... ALL FREE WILL.....

Here's what I learned tonight
NO MATTER who tripped.... no matter who walked down the wrong road.... whether you chose it yourself or whether you were walking along side someone else and THEY made the decision that knocked you down....

YOU HAVE TWO CHOICES.

#1 - you can let the choice AFFLICT you.   You can allow your own mistake or someone else's mistake to paralyze you to the point of not even recognizing right from wrong anymore.  You are AFFLICTED.  By yourself, by God, by another.... but regardless, you choose to be AFFLICTED.  This means you have CHOSEN to allow this set-back, this stumble, this fall to CONTROL you.  It changes you for the worse.  You become sooooo obsessed with this mistake that it begins to rule your entire life.   And you know what happens then.... you KEEP trying that same road... over and over and over thinking that one day YOU will overcome.   One day you won't get knocked down.  One day you will be ENTITLED to overcome!  You deserve it after all.... You've EARNED it!  And your wrong.  Wrong is wrong is wrong, no matter how many times you try it.

~OR~

#2 - you can let the choice AFFECT you.  So you made a mistake.  Big whoop.  We're human for goodness sake.  NO-ONE, no matter how they present themselves to be, is perfect.  NO-ONE.  So you make mistakes, others make mistakes... and God gives you free will to MAKE mistakes.
The difference is with this AFFECT, you LEARN from your mistakes.  You learn from others mistakes.  You do the most important thing you can possibly do and that is forgive yourself for falling and REMEMBER why you fell and then use your free will to CHOOSE not to go down that road again.

So whether you MAKE a mistake or someone else MAKES a mistake that impacts you, choose to let that decision AFFECT you, NOT AFFLICT you.   Let yourself off the hook.  God isn't keeping score.  And contrary to what most people think, other people really aren't keeping score either....   most of us are doing our best to survive our OWN life's ups and downs.  We're too busy to really give a crap about whether you messed up or not and what the score is.... or whether or not you are I have been vindicated!

LOVE FREELY, LAUGH OFTEN, LIVE TO THE FULLEST
and most of all
FORGIVE YOURSELF......... be AFFECTED, not AFFLICTED!

Let it die and move on to a better life.
We choose to let life rule us - OR let God rule our life!

I also came across this quote from Jeremy from another blog that I now follow.
It was intense and I wanted to share.

The scream of anguish can be deafening. The darkness of pain can be blinding. But the hope found through letting go and trusting God radiates with faith that new days are ahead. God can bring forth true love and beauty from the painful corridors of our hearts, but we must let go of the dark places. Yes, the task of letting go is just as hard as the initial heartache, but in the end, I am hoping that it will be worth it. 


Saturday, November 12, 2011

The foundation

As a child, I was raised in church.  I was given a foundation to stand on.  I am thankful for that.
There were times through out my life when I strayed from what I was taught.  Times that I spread my wings and tried to walk on my own.  And that I did.  But the wonderful thing is... that foundation I was raised with, always brought me back around.
I grew up.  I made mistakes.  I rebelled.  I did wrong.  I did some right too... but for the most part, I did what I wanted to do... what I thought was right.  I had to learn things the hard way.  What can I say?!  It's how I've always learned... the hard way.

Now, I'm an adult.  I know what I was taught.  I know how I raised.  I know from experience that bad decisions or decisions that are not thought through will sometimes come back to haunt you.  It's that funny thing we call life.  Sometimes they are decisions I make, and sometimes they are decisions that are made for me.  But even when the decision is made FOR me... I still have to decide how to handle and deal with that decision.  And I'm thankful for my upbringing and my foundation because I know right from wrong.  I know up from down.  I know because I always pray and ask, what would God have me do here?  Now I think not what I want, but what God wants... when I'm at a crossroad and I'm forced to deal with something, I now have the withstanding to step back and think... what would God have me do?

Here's where things get confusing.... and this may be a little deep for some.

One of the fundamentals in my foundation and religion is this.... (I do realize there are VERY different opinions on this)  I have always been raised to believe once saved always saved.   That once you have that transformation and ask Jesus into your heart, that is where he resides.  Forever.  Sure I believe that you can stray... you can mess up... heck, we are a people in a world full of sin.  Being saved doesn't make you perfect.  It makes NO ONE perfect.  We ALL mess up.  But I believe with God in your heart and knowing that you have professed your faith in him, that there will be a PULL in your heart as you are walking down that dark path that tugs at your heart... your conscious... Jesus in your heart beckoning you all the while that you are following YOUR will and not God's will.
Here's where things are beginning to get a little fuzzy for me these days.

Do you believe that there is a point where that salvation is lost?  I have had conversations with several people recently.  About my recent circumstances and about other situations happening all around me.  And although I have always stood strong on my belief and that foundation.... I have been reading and researching recently and I now wonder... is there a point where you cross a line and your no longer in favor of God.  Is there a point where your name is no longer written in the book of life?  Is there a point where you have completely turned your back and God and that gift of salvation and you have committed the unpardonable sin of blasphemy?  Is there a point where your testimony is no longer a testimony?  Is there a point where you are walking down a road blatantly doing YOUR will and trying to fix YOUR life on YOUR own and God's will is no longer a factor?
And if you go down that road... if you still profess to be a Christian but you live a life that shows nothing but pride and self preservation and SELF will that you have turned your back so far to the point where you become more a hinderence to God's will rather than a testimony?
And when you reach that point... are you really truly saved?  Are you truly heaven bound?

Ironically, after these recent conversations and insight - I read my daily devotion today.  And this is what it said....

THE CHANGED LIFE
"If anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; old things have passed away; behold, all things have become new"  (2 Corinthians 5:17)

What understanding do you have of the salvation of your soul?  The work of salvation means that in your real life things are dramatically changed.  You no longer look at things in the same way.  Your desires are new and the old things have lost their power to attract you.  One of the tests for determining if the work of salvation in your life is genuine is - has God changed the things that really matter to you?  If you still yearn for the old things, it is absurd to talk about being born from above - you are deceiving yourself.  If you are born again, the Spirit of God makes the change very evident in your real life and thought.  And when a crisis comes, you are the most amazed person on earth at the wonderful difference there is in you.  There is no possibility of imagining that you did it.  It is this complete and amazing change that is the very evidence that you are saved.

What difference has my salvation and sanctification made?  For instance, can I stand in the light of 1 Corinthians 13, or do I squirm and evade the issue:  True salvation, worked out in me by the Holy Spirit frees me completely.  And as long as I "walk in the light as He is in the light" (1 John 1:7), God sees nothing to rebuke because His life is working itself into every detailed part of my being, not on the conscious level, but even deeper than my consciousness. ~Oswald Chambers~
  
If you no longer have that pull?  If you no longer feel the need to do God's will - but are instead focused on YOUR WILL and YOU fixing things and paying for your mistakes....  are you walking in the light anymore?  If you continually ignore that pull in your heart and continually turn your back on the God you accepted in your heart, do you feel like at some point you become more of a hindrance to God's plan than a testimony?  Does your testimony just become blasphemous?  And if it is - do you believe that is the unpardonable sin that removes your name from the book of life?

Thursday, November 10, 2011

Hell in a Handbasket

I have sat for some time now, and watched my world come crashing down around me.  I saw it fall, brick by brick, day after day.  And I fought so hard to keep picking them up and putting them back, and throw some paste on hoping eventually they would stick.  All the while with a big smile on my face thinking... it's gonna get better.  But alas, I watched and felt my heart absolutely break into pieces.  Not just because the man I love turned his back on me, but mostly because a man I admired and looked up to, has lost his perspective.  Lost his place.  Lost his priorities.  And heaven help me for offending anyone, but no longer sees the line between right and wrong in God's eyes.

I sat on facebook tonight and read post after post after post of people talking of troubled times and pain and heartache in their lives.  And it breaks my heart.  It breaks my heart because all around me, people have lost hope and faith and perspective in life.  People fold to what the world says and what the world thinks, and they constantly try to "out-do" someone or "beat" someone.... or "one up" someone... as if they have something to PROVE!
Here's my question........ what are you trying to prove?  and to WHOM?  Really?!  In the big scheme of things, sure we all want to be happy, but at what cost?  Stepping on everyone around you in order to prove yourself ?worthy??  of what??

I am by no means perfect, nor will I ever claim to be.  But I do my best to uphold my beliefs and live right by God.  HE is the only one I have to answer to ultimately.  So going through a divorce, YES, my heart is absolutely broken.  Not just because I have lost the man I love, but because I feel wrong in God's eyes.  I don't believe in divorce.  I didn't CHOOSE this.  I didn't wake up one day and decide I just don't want to be married anymore.  But apparently, in the world today, divorce is a dime a dozen.  People go into marriage carelessly and thoughtlessly with the frame of mind that if they decide it's not working, they can just get a divorce and walk away.  I don't get that.   And I especially don't get that from people who are raised to believe in the holy sanctity of marriage.

Now - don't get me wrong.  There are circumstances when divorce is completely out of your hands.  Infidelity, disrespect, abuse.... circumstances that weren't present before marriage, that come later.  Some people are forced to walk away in order to protect their own integrity in God.  God didn't intend marriage to ever be an institution to trap someone in an environment of degradation or any form of misrepresenting Him.  Marriage is sacred.  And when one doesn't treat it that way, I don't feel like you are judged for being divorced.  God knows the true story.

And I'm not just talking about my story, I'm talking about people making decisions and putting things in their lives above God.  Things that become your focus and your god.
Past mistakes they are trying to somehow redeem themselves from...
children that you want a better life for....
Decisions made selfishly to better yourself, rather than glorify God...
things that we know in our hearts are wrong, yet we focus so much on fixing things ourselves and focusing on what WE can do and how WE can fix things and how WE can make things better.

Here's an idea....
how about this....... be thankful for what God has given you and where God has brought you to rather than focusing on what you've lost.  There's a reason it's not still there.
how about this.....  before you make a decision, pray about it and ask God to guide your decision rather than thinking YOU can fix everything yourself.
how about this.... attend a church service now and then where the preacher TELLS you when your wrong, not just someone who pats you on the back and tells you everyone sins and it's ok.
how about this...... try to live MORE like a Christian and less like the world.
how about this - LIVE to be an example and GOOD influence on your friends - STAND OUT.
Stop surrounding yourself with people who just want to have a good time, but surround yourself instead with people who tell you when your wrong and you do likewise with them.

No I'm not on my soapbox.  I just look around and see everyone breaking up and fighting and divorcing and no one seems to care anymore.  Hurt and pain just seem to be the every day norm and no one cares anymore.

Hell in a handbasket - everyone just jump on it.
or STAND OUT!!!!!!!!

And when people make fun of you or don't understand you... remember this - GOD has a purpose for you and a plan for you.  And those most like him may be most persecuted, but guess what, you also have the ability to make the most impression on people around you.  Embrace that... you are chosen!

My heart is broken - but I KNOW I am blessed and I know God has a plan and purpose for my life.
In that my friends, I find solace.