Welcoming in 2015

I shared a couple days ago about my one word for 2015. While mulling over exactly how rediscovering myself should look a couple things came to mind. The first was a song. A song I know I’ve shared here before. The lyrics of this song were once again brought to my attention on the 28th:

"The Real Me" by Natalie Grant. Listen here: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4bRGfId9quY

“The Real Me” by Natalie Grant. Listen here: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4bRGfId9quY

Even though this song was written to help the artist with a very real struggle with bulimia, I believe that so many of us can relate to the struggle of just wanting to find ourselves outside of our circumstance. That’s the beauty of music, the words can impact so many people in different ways.

Along with this song, there was something else that came into my mind. Scripture. One I’d become very much  familiar with several years back. In fact, it’s been the focus of several books I’ve read over the last several years. However, this time, it’s come to life so much more.

Prov31.25

These two tools, combined with the focus of rediscovering what self means to me, are sure to help. A few other steps I’m planning to take on this journey:

  • Set a consistent time to wake up each morning
    • enough time for breakfast and quiet time
  • Discover a way to become more active and stick to it
  • Write consistently. Either here or in a journal I received for Christmas
  • Read books. All the way to the end.
  • Take time monthly (more frequently if needed) and do something to refresh myself
  • Crochet again
  • Make girl time a must

Do you have any goals for this year? Any hopes and dreams that are beginning to take shape?

Into Marvelous Light

Has it really been a month since my last post? *goes back and rechecks the date* It sure has.

With many tugs, I find myself back here. To write. To love. To share.

Many times in the past week I have sat down to write. I sit and try to type, but find my heart distracted. Unsure where to start. There was simply too much distracting me.

First off, props to those fellow moms. The ones with kids and still can find the time to consistently write. I pray for that to happen, but haven’t found the groove yet.

Secondly. The distractions. All of them. From financial issues, to medical issues, to work and looking for possibly a different work path, to marriage, to my quiet time, to every other thing that is on my plate and is slipping my mind. I can’t seem to get away from them. A much as I try, they haunt me.

Third, the launch. The launch of Impact Community Church. After much planning, praying, prepping, we hit the ground running today.

I’m convinced the third thing in the list is the reason for most of the things in the second. In fact, I can almost guarantee it. As we have an enemy who loves to strike right when we’re on the verge of something big for God. Something that is right in line with His plan.

The last 7-10 days have been absolutely crazy. First my body starts acting strange, after some conversations and research I know what’s going on. Then to discover little man needs a CT scan to see if he needs to have surgery before getting a helmet as his head still has quite the flat spot. The news from a loved one that includes further treatments in hopes of preventing things from getting worse. All of this on top of prolonged financial issues has put quite the strain on us as of late.

BUT we have a God who is bigger. A God who is stronger. A God who will prevail.

My hopes are to get back to this consistently soon, but I simply cannot make those promises. Not between appointments which should be set up soon, to all the possibilities that would bring. The emotions linked with every single thing going on are already running high. Honestly, they have been for quite some time.

So my request is simply this, that if you think of us, whenever you do, you simply say a short prayer. Even if all that comes to mind is “God help them” or something along those lines. It would be greatly appreciated.

Contentment {CMA}

Our weekly Count Me Accountable link up is all about living a healthier life. Lately, I’ve set out with some great goals, written with determination, at least one each week. All with the hope of getting back on track. To living a healthier life. To improving myself for the benefit of myself. For the benefit of my husband. For the benefit of my son. For the benefit of every person I love.

Then it dawned on me this week. Rather He revealed to me. Before I can build upon my life to improve it, I need to be happy with my life. I need to rediscover myself. I need to learn to be content with who I am. To find peace within the situation I am in. To find the joy of being where I am at. To living in the moment. Without worries of what I should be doing. Where I should be heading. How I want to look. The size I want to be. And so on.

So my goal is to allow life to slow down  a little. To enjoy each and every phase my son is in without wondering when the sleep will come. Without desiring him to be able to do this or that. I want to enjoy this time with my family. To make and cherish the time with Kevin. To make time with him a priority over anything else that longs to take it.

Friends, it’s time. It’s time for me to live and love this life. Rather than trying to make it better. After all, I need to be happy with where I am. Before, when I was improving myself it was because I was happy. Because I was content. Because I was secure in who I was, where I was, despite all the chaos that was going on around me.

Now, with the challenges of being a first time mom, with all the change that comes with a new job for Kevin, plus the factor of not liking the fact that we work different shifts, I’m in the place I want to be. Mentally. Emotionally. Spiritually.

I love my family and I want to be all there when I’m with them. So that’s the place I’m going to start. After all, who wouldn’t want to spend as much time with these guys as possible.

Photo

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Andrew's BIrth 080

Focus: H2O {CMA}

Here we are for another beloved count me accountable post. I’ll be linking up over with the fantastic ladies at Must Love God. We’d love to have you.

If you couldn’t tell, this post is all about water. Not just physical water but spiritual water as well.

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My goal is to drink at least 2, if not 3 of these bottles a day BEFORE drinking anything else. I do this in hopes of limiting the amount of calories I drink. I want to focus on changing this habit first because I believe it is the best foundation to have. If I am able to keep myself from drinking junk then it will make it easier to keep myself from eating junk later on.

Just like physical water is the foundation of physical life. There is a spiritual water that I believe to be the foundation of a healthy spiritual life.

What is this spiritual water? The Word that was given to us straight from God. Without “drinking” enough of this water each day, it is extremely hard to maintain a healthy, vibrant, growing relationship with God.

So, just as I’m striving to incorporate more physical water into my daily life, I will also be striving to incorporate more spiritual water into my daily life.

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what are your goals to become a more balanced, more healthy person this week?

New year, refreshed goals {CMA}

Well friends, it’s that time again. We’re restarting Count Me Accountable with a link-up at MustLoveGod. Every Thursday a group of us write about the ways we want to better our lives. Not only that but we list specific goals, and weekly we update each other on what’s going on. We’d love to have you join us (just follow the link above).

count-me-accountable

Count Me Accountable. As much as I loathe it. I have also come to love it. So off I go.

All of my adolescence and adult life thus far has been spent being overweight, constantly tired, and completely insecure. After getting off to a great start by changing my eating habits and walking at least 3 days a week, I was able to go from 190 down to 174 from the start of January through the end of March. This was astronomical for me. As I had never been able to find an effective way to lose the excess weight and keep it off.

This, however, was when the game had to change for me. Two days after posting this lowest weight, I took a test. A life changing test. Two days after this milestone, I discovered that some bigger changes were taking place. I discovered that I was pregnant. I had to focus more on mental, emotional and spiritual more so than the weight side of physical.

This year, I feel like I’m starting new. I weighed in this morning at 179lbs. I am proud of this though. It would have been extremely easy to just have not cared, and gained a large amount of weight through the journey that is pregnancy. Without this community, that would have been exactly what I would have done.

My plan was to go back to my eating habits from before. This was supposed to start this past Monday. That didn’t happen quite as easily as I hoped. However, I have drastically cut back, almost completely eliminated pop and other sugary drinks, as well as candy and other sugars.

My plan is to completely eliminate all the sugary drinks and the sugar-filled foods by February 1st. After that, I will see where I am at, and evaluate what needs to go next.

Next week, we’ll dig into the other areas that I’m going to be working on improving. The spiritual side which is going to be the most important for me in this journey of motherhood, let alone life. As well as the Emotional and mental goals I have. Which, if the spiritual goals are in line, the other ones should fall into place naturally.

So friends, I ask, are you in?

What Went Wrong {& gifts 106-120}

Friends, have you ever had one of those nights where you feel like you could just break down at any second, for no particular reason? As I sit here tonight I’m feeling very heart broken. And to be totally honest, I’m not quite sure why. All I know is that I see a brokenness in the world around me and I feel it in the deepest parts of my heart.

Maybe it’s because the “normal” brokenness we see in the world around us has started continued to seep into my family and close circle. Perhaps it’s because as I find myself plunging into 1 Peter with my hello mornings gang I am starting to see more about the world around me that is less than appetizing. However, it could be due  to the raging hormones of pregnancy. Although somehow, deep inside I think it’s a mixture of the first two with just twinge of the third. When I look around, I can’t help but wonder,

what went wrong? 

Then I look at the traits that God created us to represent. Love. Peace. Respect. Hope. Kindness. Joy. Grace. Him. Then I look around me and I have a hard time seeing these. More often we see hate, rage, disrespect (or lack of respect), hopelessness, disdain, bitterness, Satan.

When we stop yearning to look like Him, we cease to be able to accurately reflect these traits. When we stop reflecting these traits, those around us cease to see even a fraction of who He is. When we stop searching after  the God who created us and stop reaching for the characteristics He wants us to have, we fall hard. We fall prey to Satan. We fall right into his traps that are set up for us.

I see vicious cycles floating around in the air around me. Cycles that I try with all my might to avoid. Honestly, I’ve found myself trapped in these cycles most of my life, because that’s all I had ever known. Until He guided me into relationships with other believers that helped shed light on the true issues in which they were rooted.

Now, it is only by His grace that I do not fall into those cycles (as often). I’m not afraid to admit that at times I still fall prey to them. Now I stop and ask myself,

what can I do?

But I have found the key to avoiding many of those major traps. Daily worship, scripture reading, and prayer.

 

So as I sit here tonight, something of which I’m not totally sure the origin, weighing heavy on my chest. I can sit back, take a deep breath in, exhale some of the heaviness and TRUST that my spirit is conveying the prayers that my brain doesn’t know it needs to be saying. Not only that, but I can trust that God is already at work in my heart to show me the steps I need to take to help the heaviness.

 

*Because I know that one of the best ways to come out of a mood like this is to count some of these…and after all it is still Monday…

106. I love feeling the strong kicks of my little boy. Although I might not think they’re as sweet when he gets on the outside…
107. Brokenness
108. Beauty in brokenness
109. Circumstances that bring about
110. Friends who pray at the drop of a hat
111. The ability to be Switzerland
112. A job that challenges me
113. A very active baby boy
114. 1 Peter
115. Challenges that make this life worth while
116. 31 parties that allow me to get to know other women around me
117. The good days at work
118. Quiet time in the morning
119. My desires for a family that is a-typical in today’s society
120.A husband who has the same desires for our family

My mind some days

The other day I was talking to a friend on the phone after my doctors appointment. This last appointment was the big one. We found out that we have a little boy on the way! I remember saying that I didn’t really have a preference so long as the baby way healthy. I chatted with my friend for a few more minutes before hanging up.

When I hang up, Mom mentions that she had a friend who used that same phrase while she was pregnant. Then when she had the baby it turned out to be a child with down syndrome. She went on to tell me that said friend then felt extremely guilty for telling people that the sex didn’t matter as long as the baby was healthy.

Then a question popped into my head as I was driving a little later on. Maybe it’s my line of work. Perhaps it’s one of my good blogging friends who has a special needs child. Then again, it could be because of my cousin’s very adorable 2.5 year old with downs. But I couldn’t help to think: Why do people think a disability makes someone unhealthy? 

Does someone who have special needs typically have more challenges? Medical demands? Need more time spent on them? Sure. Having special needs does make things more complicated (i.e. more doctors appointments, surgeries, medical attention, ect). As well as makes life harder on a consistent basis. However, when it comes to those with special needs, I have a hard time as labeling them as unhealthy.

Perhaps it’s because I’ve taken the time to get to know many who have some sort of special needs. Honestly, they have been some of the most healthy people I’ve known. Sure, maybe they’re a little awkward in social settings…but maybe that’s because they tend to be so open, accepting and completely brutally honest.*

Many times, the world hasn’t been able to condition these sweet beings as it has those of us who don’t have a mental, physical or emotional disability. Often we find it hard to be accepting of people no matter their look, beliefs, ect. Yet for most of them, it’s easier for them to adapt to new people. When we find it so hard to speak simple truths, they (if verbal) rarely hold back. The list could go on and on.

Perhaps, instead of looking at those with special needs as being unhealthy, we can look at them and think “what can I learn from this person?” Maybe even attempt to connect or get to know those people, their lives, their personalities, their challenges, their achievements (after all many of them have more than we do), ect.

*Keep in mind these statements are generalizations and observations from my experience. I do realize that not everyone with special needs are like this. I don’t say these things to offend anyone nor to condemn anyone. I say them to simply share my point of view when it comes to having a disability (no matter mental, physical, emotional) in reference to being unhealthy.