Tag Archives: good

Aligned

Isn’t it funny that when waves are perfectly aligned they become bigger, or when a mirror is aligned with a light source the light is doubled, or when a compass is correctly aligned it can be used to find the way.

Sweet Lord, please align the ripples flowing from my heart with the tsunami of Your love , please align my mirror so that I may reflect Your perfect light, and please align the compass of my heart with You so that my path will be straight and clear!  Please let me be an infinitesimal addition to the Your infinite goodness!

Every valley shall be filled in, every mountain and hill made low. The crooked roads shall become straight, the rough ways smooth.
Luke 3:5

The land of milk and honey…

About two weeks ago the men who mow our lawn told me that they thought we had a bee hive in our yard.  They led me through the front yard to the city water access which is located in a hole in our front yard and sealed with a black cover.  We stood there for a min and watched as 3 to 4 bees squeezed into and out of the hole in the cover every few seconds.

My first thought was, ARGH… who do I need to call to get rid of these bees?   A few min later I came to my senses and remembered the multiple documentaries I have seen on the tragic subject of the disappearing honey bees.

Within an hour I had a bee jacket, a smoker and a hive box in my Amazon shopping cart!  I was so excited… I had decided that I was going to attempt to domestic this hive and begin raising honey bees!!!  I started reading about transferring hives and looking into beginner classes for raising honey bees.  I couldn’t wait to share the good news with my sweet honey when he came home from work so that I could finally press the “Purchase” button on Amazon.

Well don’t get too excited… I am not raising honey bees.  My husband came home and reminded me of his very serious allergy to honey bee stings, he does swells up pretty badly.

So… I called our pest control service to schedule an appointment.  Since they were already scheduled to come about a week and a half later, I told them that it would be fine to take care of the bees at the same time.

During that week I tried to convinced a friend to transfer the bees to a bee box and begin raising them herself.  I unknowingly picked a pretty likely candidate because during our conversation I found out that her brother actually raises honey bees a few states away, but unfortunately even though she was excited at the idea it didn’t work out.

Then I started wondering if I should look into calling some actual bee keepers who might be interested in attempting to transfer the hive, but as usual the time got away from me and the pest control appointment day arrived before I called someone else about the hive.

I led the man from our pest control service to the box and we watched it for a min and did not see any bee activity.  We did see a few flies, but other than that nothing.  He then asked me to step back while he popped open the cover and jumped back.

We found a dead hive.  The hole in the ground was filled with water from the rain two days before and the hive had drown.  There were tons of bees floating in the water and five soggy honey combs attached to the black cover.

The bees are dead, we have no honey here my friends, but I will keep that sweet honey in mind to help me remember where we are going and to help me stay on course so that someday I will arrive home to the land of milk and honey.

Keep Him in mind always and look for Him every where!

Come Thou fount of every blessing!

I love this song!  It has been a favorite of mine for a long time.  I even composed a very sad version of it on the piano once while visiting my sister.  She is so sweet, she saved it and every time I visit I can find it tucked safely away in her piano bench.

This song came on while I was running today and it hit me… every thing is a blessing, the good, the bad, the confusing, the hurtful, the funny… EVERY THING.  His fountain is always pouring down on us and it is all good!  There are so many times when we don’t understand or believe that it is good and even times when saying something is good will bring anger, frustration and hatred from others, but His ways are mysterious and His plan is big and every move He makes is made with one thing in mind… bringing all of us home!

Whoever coined the phrase, “S’all good”, knew what they were talking about!

S’all good my friends.  Have faith through your tears, believe through your pain, and say Thank You for EVERY THING!

Thank You My Love for keeping Your focus on bringing us home, despite our tears.

Look for the little flowers!

This morning I saw a man stop and offer help to an older woman who was pushing her own wheel chair across a parking lot.  It was a lovely scene, quiet and small and probably not noticed by many.  I love seeing these small and beautiful moments of kindness and goodness in the world.  They remind me that God’s tapestry is full of small and beautiful pictures that we can see even now.  I like to think of these small moments of goodness as the little flowers decorating the trim of His tapestry.

I think His tapestry is also full of large scenes of which we only have the ability to see small portions.  When we focus on the small parts of the large scenes, we might see what we perceive to be evil.  We might notice the drops of blood, a weapon, a betrayal, a death and if we don’t have faith to trust that these things are necessary parts leading up to the overall goodness of God’s scene, His plan, His beautiful tapestry, then we lose hope in the goodness of God and His ability to use any and every action of ours to finalize His beautiful and good plan.

I know it is very cliche to say, but I must repeat what so many others have said before me.

Jesus please help us to focus on the small things, help us to seek out the little nuggets of golden goodness You have sprinkled throughout everyday, and when something bad happens help us to remember that our faith is being tested, and that we must believe in You and have faith in You and Your ability to turn anything all around and upside down.

Saying “It is Our Best Life”…

I started saying “It is our best life” every morning and every night on Jan 23, 2012.  If you have read the background or the first post on this site, you already know that before this date I was saying “It is my best life” on a regular basis.

About a week before Jan 23, 2012, I posted a note on facebook for my friends.  In my note, I gave them the background and then challenged my friends to say “It is our best life” every morning and every night for a month.  What I didn’t tell anyone at that time was that I was scared to start my own challenge.

At that time, my life was good.  My husband had recently taken a new job that allowed him to be home more.  My girls were happy and healthy and attending a new school that we all loved.  Since moving to a new city, I had reconnected with a college friend who quickly became a best friend.  Life was good and I was scared to rock the boat.

The whole week before Jan 23, 2012, I stopped saying “It is my best life”, but I did not say “It is our best life” either.  I waited until the morning of Jan 23, 2012, but when I woke up that morning I whispered “It is our best life” and I meant it.

The fear of having opened a unwanted can of worms with my new mantra “It is our best life”, didn’t go away for a few weeks, but I kept saying it.  No worms showed up, no axe fell and by the end of the month, I had formed a habit and my old mantra “It is my best life” was gone.

The challenge for my friends came and went without much follow-up, but I was hooked and I kept on saying “It is our best life”.

By Easter 2012, I had found Jesus and come to the realization that I hadn’t known Him before despite having thought I knew Him.  I love Him so much!!!

Now as Easter 2013 approaches and over a year has passed since I started saying “It is our best life” and close to a year has passed since I truly fell in love with Jesus, I look at my life and I almost don’t recognize it.  I have never been more deeply in love with my husband!  I have never been in such awe of my girls and the amazing things they say and do.  I don’t think I have ever been so relaxed, as much fun or full of so much laughter with my family!  I know I have never in my life been full of so much gratitude.

Thank you Jesus for making all things possible!  I believe Our Best Life will only get better as more people believe it is Our Best Life!

Mirrors!

I think we all want others to see the good in us, or to let Jesus shine through as some of us would say!

How can you help everyone see Jesus within you without ruining the good intentions of an action and even running the risk of taking Jesus out of the action entirely by worrying that others see it, notice it, acknowledge it, pat you on the back for it?

I know I am not the first to say this and I am definitely not very good at doing this, but we will not help Him shine through by focusing on ourselves or our good deeds and actions.

Ephesians 2:8-9
For by grace you have been saved through faith; and that not of yourselves, it is the gift of God; not as a result of works, so that no one may boast.

Now imagine that you are a mirror.

  1. What is your sole purpose in life if you are a mirror?  To reflect what you see.
  2. Can you as a mirror be good or bad?  No.
  3. If you are a mirror and have a soul, does this change whether you can be good or bad? No.
  4. If you are a mirror and have a soul, would you have a preference regarding whether you reflect good or bad? Yes, I would prefer to reflect good.

Therefore as a mirror with a soul, I am still bound by the sole purpose of a mirror which is to reflect what I see, but if I desire to reflect only good then the only way this is possible is to see the good in everything!

I think the only way to truly help Jesus shine through ourselves is to focus on finding Him in others and then be their mirror!  The more light of Jesus you find in others, the more light of Jesus your mirror can then reflect back on everyone!

Can you see it?  A world full of mirrors constantly reflecting the light/love of Jesus!  It would be blinding, it would be beautiful, there would be rainbows everywhere!

It is Our Best Life… Jesus please help us to find the good in everything so that our mirrors will be full of Your light!

Who is wicked?

I was cleaning some raspberries this afternoon that I had left in the refrigerator 2 days too long.  As I was cleaning them I had to throw away parts of some that had gone bad, but in the end all of them had at least one bead of fruit that was still good.

While I was doing this I was thinking about a documentary I watched last night that discussed the wicked and quoted Daniel 12:10, “… None of the wicked shall understand, but the wise shall understand”.

I started wondering who is wicked?

The definitions I found for wicked are below

  • Evil by nature and in practice
  • Evil or morally bad in principle or practice

If someone is considered to be wicked or evil, but this person does not know better due to abuse, neglect, a lack of education, a terrible upbringing can we still consider this person to be wicked or evil?  I think their acts can be considered evil and wicked, but are they really evil to the core?

What if I had experienced the same abuse, neglect, difficult upbringing and poor or lack of education? Maybe I would be doing even worse things than the person who did experience this childhood?  Maybe I wasn’t exposed to this because the potential I had for acts of evil was even greater than the person who was exposed to this in reality? Maybe I would have been lost forever?

I don’t believe that anyone is wicked or evil to the core.  I believe we all still have at least one bead of good still inside.  I think Jesus wants ALL of us, down to the very last good bead!

I think Jesus may be protecting those with a weakness for performing wicked and evil acts through ignorance.  This puts a very heavy burden on those who are given knowledge and understanding.

Jesus please help us to see the beads of good in everyone, and help us to use any knowledge and understanding that you have blessed us with ONLY for Your Glory and Your Good!

Free will…

I have had three discussions about our free will over the last three months that have stuck with me.  Then last night I was watching the documentary The Human Experience and I saw the following quote.

“The last of the human freedom’s is to choose one’s attitude in any given circumstance.”
– Viktor E. Frankl

As soon as I saw this quote I immediately thought that this seems not only to be the last of our freedoms, but also the first and original freedom we were given when God gave us our free will.

Until recently I have limited my thoughts of our free will to only our physical actions. When I think of free will only in relation to my physical actions such as taking the stairs vs. the elevator or going to work vs. staying home or doing something wrong vs. doing something right, then I become quite confused because if God gave me free will, but knows what I will choose to do and can bring about events that will cause me to make a different choice then my free will seems limited.  Please don’t misunderstand me though. I am not saying that this limitation means our physical actions have no bearing or carry no weight.  I believe God still wants us to do the right thing.  I believe He still wants us to be generous rather than selfish, He wants us to not steal, He wants us to not kill, He wants us to love others, but we can’t forgot that God is bigger than we can imagine.  God can take any bad physical action we make and combine it with other actions to make it good in the end.

Isn’t this what he did through Jesus’ death and resurrection?  God took the worst imaginable physical action (us killing His son Jesus) and turned it into good (resurrecting His son Jesus).  By combining these, Jesus’ death becomes good because without it He could not have been resurrected.

Now, if I change my perspective of free will and look at it as my freedom to choose how I perceive things or to choose my attitude as Viktor Frankl put it in his quote above, then the limitations I spoke of disappear.

God can give me a sunny day, but it is up to me to enjoy the sun or complain about the heat.  God can give me a rainy day, but again it is my choice to complain about the rain or to instead look for a rainbow.

He completely relinquished control of our consciousness through free will giving us complete freedom to perceive the world as we wish.  This doesn’t mean that God will ever stop trying to convince us to perceive good in all things, but he literally cannot make us see the good in all things.  He is limited to trying to convince us that all things are good through combining bad actions with others to make them good in the end and through showering us with grace and inspiration which we have the choice to accept or decline.

It is completely up to us to see the good, but what happens when and if we do perceive the good in everything?

I think we will have found our own unique perspective of the good in everything which will mean that we have also surrendered to God’s will because God’s will is Good!!!

Therefore I think we will have found God’s peace!!!

God thank you for loving us so much that you gave us free will.  Please help me to use my free will to find the good in everything and therefore surrender to Your will!

I want to stand for good… it is everywhere even if we don’t think we can see it, it is hidden from view, but it is there!

I want to stand for Jesus… he is Good, Oh so Good!!!

Peace

I am reading The Imitation of Christ by Thomas a Kempis.  Today I read chapter 3, The Man Who Loves Peace, and I want to share a bit of it with you and a few thoughts I had while reading.

Thomas a Kempis wrote
The good and peace-loving man turns everything into good.  The man who dwells in perfect peace suspects evil of no one.

The man of blind passion even turns good into evil and is quick to believe evil of others. The man who is discontented and disgruntled has a heart filled with suspicion.

I want peace!  How do we teach/learn peace?  Is it being taught?  I am honestly asking and would love your thoughts.

Does finding peace lead one to believe that everything is good?

Or

Are peace and believing everything is good equivalent, meaning that once you believe everything is good then you have also found peace and vice versa once you have found peace then you believe everything is good?

If the latter is correct, then seeing/finding the good in everything should lead us to peace. This seems like a great place to start if you are looking for peace!

I know I am not the first to say this, but I think

  • Believing the glass is half full could help lead us to PEACE
  • Finding the sliver lining in the clouds could help lead us to PEACE
  • Looking for the rainbow through the rain could help lead us to PEACE
  • Finally whoever came up with the slang expression, S’all good, hit the nail on the head and wanted to help lead us to PEACE

Jesus said in John 14:27

Peace I leave with you; my peace I give you. I do not give to you as the world gives. Do not let your hearts be troubled and do not be afraid.

Let us reclaim the PEACE Jesus has left with us, the PEACE He has given to us.  Let us live with untroubled hearts and let us live fearlessly!

My friends, I wish you peace from the bottom of my heart!  Let us live Our Best Life in Peace!

Perspective shift

We went to the park the other day to take a short hike with the girls. As we were all getting out of the car and unfolding the stroller a woman was walking by with two small dogs. I was just about to look up and say hello when she dropped her wallet and said in a very angry and exasperated voice to herself, “This has been the worst f*****g day, can anything else go wrong?” She picked up her wallet and stomped past us through the parking lot. It was only 10:30 am, and I thought to myself, unfortunately she still has most of the day left for things to continue spiraling out of control. Obviously I only saw one moment of her story and it appeared to be a very bad moment, but it made me think about perspective and if a perspective shift could have helped her through the rest of the day.

Perspective is defined as a mental view of or outlook on a situation.  I think a perspective shift can change almost anything.  When I don’t know someone else’s full story it is difficult to suggest a perspective shift, but hopefully a personal story will help make my point.

A few weeks ago I was out on a Sunday evening on my way to return a movie. I turned onto the highway feeder road a little too quickly and hit the curb with my rear tire. The tire immediately blew and luckily I was just about 200 yards from an open gas station. As I was pulling in to see if they could help me change my tire I was thinking, It serves me right because I made the turn too quickly, as if this was punishment for my poor driving. A really nice young man changed my tire and I was on my way.  The next day I went to buy a new tire and the man at the store strongly suggested replacing the other three as well.   I took a look at the tires and if you know about the penny test to check the treads then you will understand how necessary it was for me to get new tires when I tell you that there was nowhere to even put the penny.  As I was pulling away with four new tires I could have been complaining about the hour I had just spent waiting for new tires or the money I had just spent that I had planned to use for something else, but instead I thought to myself, Thank you God for making me get new tires since I wasn’t going to find the time to do it without your help.

Despite some of the terrible things I see in the news, I try to keep my perspective shifted  and continue to believe it is Our Best Life and I hope you do too?  If we all believe it is our best life would the news change?

Jesus said, “Whatever you ask in prayer, believe that you have received it, and it will be yours.”