'Living life' (one of my resolutions) with my children ice skating at Sugar Mountain, NC Christmas 2011
We will open the book. Its pages are blank. We are going to put words on them ourselves. The book is called Opportunity and its first chapter is New Year's Day. ~Edith Lovejoy Pierce (1904)
1. "Stop plowing a field in your mind; nothing gets accomplished when you do." Mr. Walton from The Walton's.
2. "We must never apologize for living life." My dear blogging friend, Christie at Grammy's House...A Quaint Victorian Cottage sent me a message with these wise words. Often, I am apologizing to someone for something I forgot or was late doing or didn't do. My excuses stumble out of that...I am living life...life with Rob and my children and both sides of our families in town and activities, the occasional illness or interruptions will naturally cause delays! I need to stop apologizing...this is the season the Lord has me, and I need not be sorry.
3. "We all make decisions based on our past experiences, present circumstances, and future desires. None will look the same." Podcast by Andy Stanley
We need to get our judgments in check. How people make decisions is actually fascinating. We tend to judge if a decision is different than our own.
4. What is right for one person or for one family may not be right for another. We are all unique and praise God that we are, or life would be so boring!
5. "When you say, "Yes" to something, you are saying "No" to something else." Lysa Terkeurst
I am very careful what I say 'Yes' to and what I allow the children to say 'Yes' to; usually too many times saying 'Yes' to other things means saying 'No' to family time. We have to pray about what we take on and what activities we do, because each person affects the whole. Usually, a 'Yes' for one person, means a sacrifice for the rest of the family. I am very protective of our time.
6. Have grace with each other. I thank the Lord for good friends whom have an exorbitant amount of grace with me...for all those times I forgot, I didn't do or was late doing, and for loving me despite my glaring sins. After all, we get each other and we understand. We are right where we are, and life is busy raising children. I thank the Lord for the grace He gives me every day and for a husband who chooses to give me grace. I need to work on showing grace to others, because what a gift it is to me!
7. He has sent me to proclaim freedom for the prisoners and recovery of sight for the blind, to set the oppressed free. ~Luke 4:18
Have you ever met someone who is free? He or she gets it. They are free and not bound by the pressures of society. They are free and not concerned with images. Freedom may not come easy and it may come with huge sacrifices, but these people get it. Have you seen it? Have you met them? I have. I know people who are free. I want it. Discover what is keeping you in bondage and pray to be set free. Are you in bondage to order and cleanliness? Are you in bondage to materialism or words of affirmation from others? Whatever it is, seek the Lord and seek freedom. Here are a few strongholds in my life: materialism, comfort, food, too consumed with my children, etc. I am seeking Him and seeking freedom!
8. Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength and with all your mind, and Love your neighbor as yourself. Luke 10:27
Choose people over perfection and the relationship over the task. Really everything boils down to this verse in the Bible. Often we miss it with our lists or our tasks and trying to do good or trying to be good or thinking we are good enough. We can never do anything to earn our way into heaven. Loving Him and trying our best to love others as much as we love ourselves would probably offer the freedom in number 7!
9. Live simple. Simplicity is available to us if we choose it. We fool ourselves into thinking technological advances make our lives easier. Maybe. But we miss out on face-to face conversations and interactions. We miss out on quality time with each other. I am not sure that sending a text message qualifies as 'loving my neighbor...' I am guilty. I admit it. I am told that I must 'get with the times', because this is my children's future. I want to understand technology. I just don't want to be replaced or controlled by it. I still want my children to learn correct English and have good penmanship; in an age of texting, this is diminishing. I still want to sit on a porch swing instead of an XBox image of a swing with an avatar of me seeing how fast I can swing and beat my opponent. And this returns me to no. 1 with Mr. Walton. Oh, how desperately I want to be his daughter and live on Walton's mountain!
10. Live life. Theodore Roosevelt said, "Do what you can, with what you have, where you are." Don't wait until you lose ten, twenty, thirty pounds. For many of us, this is the deal. "When I loose the weight, I will...play with my kids; run a race; go to the gym; fit into that outfit; put on a bathing suit; go out with friends; go on a date..." Live life now. "Do what you can, with what you have, where you are" and do it now.
Jesus sees me through grace-tinted lenses and He loves me! He loves you, too. I pray that you see the grace that abounds and feel it in your heart as you enter 2012!
What are your resolutions?
Happy New Year!