somebodylovesmeblog

Sharing God's love with the world, one heart at a time.


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A Glimpse

Today I would like to share something that actually gave me chills when it happened.  There is really no exact explanation, however, I do believe it was one of those blessings that come as a glimpse from heaven…allowed by our Heavenly Father.

My three sisters and I are working through our grieving processes regarding our mother’s passing pretty well, at our individual paces.  Honestly, I feel as though my mom is a part of me, and for the most part, any tears cried now are tears of joy for who she was, and the love she brought to our family and all those that she touched.  The only way I can describe the way I feel, is that my mom’s spirit permeates my whole being.

My husband and I are enjoying our time together…the first time we are “alone” since our sons were born.  We are having fun going out, spending quiet time together, just enjoying each other.  Although my mom is in my heart, I am not dwelling on her passing away.  It just IS.

About a week ago, I wore one of the special pairs of earrings that I had given my mom as a birthday gift.  They are small flowers made of sparkly crystals.  Each petal is a different color, and my mom LOVED color!  The day after I wore them, for some reason the thought went through my head that my mom was wearing those earrings when she was dead, and those same earrings were in my ears.  The thought came and went without much thought.

That same night I had a dream of my mom coming back to our home.  In my dream I kept thinking, “Mom you died, how can you be back here?” but I couldn’t bring myself to say those words to her.  I felt bad because all of her clothes and things were gone, so I told her I had given away most of her stuff.  But I went downstairs to retrieve the little miniature case with the miniatures that represented years of memories for her.  I wanted her to have something that belonged to her and would help the room to be “homey” for her.  When I came upstairs, she was outside running in the grass.  With no cane or walker.  You see, she had used a cane when she first came to live with us, then progressed to a walker, then a wheelchair.  When I saw her outside, she was carefree and happy.

When I woke up, I was filled with a warm feeling about my mom being in heaven with Jesus.  I described the dream to my husband, and then went on with my day.  I didn’t think much about it after that.

A few days later I was talking to one of my sisters.  She told me that she had a troubling dream a few days before, and that she didn’t understand why she would dream something like that.

She told me that in her dream there was a woman that died, and that someone took the earrings out of the dead woman’s ears and put them in hers.  She didn’t know who the woman was or what the dream may have meant.  The hair on my arms and neck stood straight up and I got chills as soon as she said it.  I remembered my thoughts about mom’s earrings on that same day, and shared it with her.  I also told her about my dream about mom.

There was a moment of silence while my sister processed what I said.  She then soulfully said, “Mom visited you that night to let you know she is ok.”

I am not quite sure how or why these kinds of things happen.  However, I do know that the kingdom of heaven is a real place and state of being.  I also know that God the Father, Son and Holy Spirit reside there with all the angels and saints.  And sometimes, I believe, we are allowed a glimpse of the joy of that kingdom.

 


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God’s Vessel of Love

Last night I finally followed through on something that has been on my heart for quite some time.  There were two reasons that held me back from doing what I knew the Lord was calling me to do.

Right before my mom passed away, she was in rehab for about a month.  She enjoyed her time there.  Being the social person that she was, she forged a friendship with her roommate, Elizabeth.  Elizabeth had been in rehab for quite awhile, and the center was now to be her home.  Her eyesight started to get worse, and she was not able to walk on her own.  She was confined to her wheelchair, which she sat in most of the day, listening to her television.  She had not participated in any of the activities offered to her.

Enter my mom…she invited and prodded Elizabeth to attend Bingo with her, and also some worship services and the Rosary.  They ended up going together, and Elizabeth ended up really enjoying herself.

When Joe and I visited my mom each day, we would bring treats for her, and also for Elizabeth.  Things like chocolate milkshakes, candy, homemade guacamole, and cookies.  We also brought two of my mom’s small wooden crosses…one for each of them.  Elizabeth instantly held it in her hand, feeling the smoothness of the wood, and tracing Jesus on the cross.  Every time we came in, the crucifix was either in her hand or on her bedside table.

When my mom was discharged,  we all felt bad leaving Elizabeth, and I knew she felt the same sadness.  We gave her a hug, and I made the decision to continue visiting her once my mom was settled in at home.

Two weeks from the date of discharge, my mom passed away.  During the whirlwind of what transpired once we  brought mom home, and then Hospice Care in our home, I didn’t have time to even remember or think about Elizabeth.

Once life settled down a bit, I started to feel the draw again to visit Elizabeth in the Health and Rehab Center.  However, as I mentioned before, there were two things that held me back.

I knew that Elizabeth really bonded with my mom and I also knew she would ask about her.  Being that Elizabeth was in failing health herself, and felt so close to my mother, I was reticent to tell her of my mom’s death.  I am not the kind of person that could lie about a thing like that, and I was concerned about how the truth would affect her.

The other issue that was lurking in the back of my mind was that I was not sure I could handle the emotions of walking into the room where my mom enjoyed the last month before her struggle and then her death.  I can still see her in that bed by the door.  She would be sitting up, with her cute reading glasses on, and doing word search or reading.  When I asked her how her day was, she would say, “I had a beautiful day!”  Then we would visit and she would force me to stash all the sugar packets, snacks, and cookies that she collected from her dinner trays into my bag.  It was our daily ritual!  So I was not sure what emotions might come up if I visited Elizabeth in that same room.

The Lord kept nudging me to make the visit, and yesterday was the day!  The room that my mother and Elizabeth were in was visible from the outside walkway.  I looked in through the back door window (locked from the inside) to check for Elizabeth’s name that was posted by the room.  Her name was gone.

I had a sinking feeling that maybe I was too late, and that she passed away.

Even though my heart was fluttering, I made it to the front desk, and asked about Elizabeth.  The receptionist smiled and told me that her room was moved, and pointed me in the right direction.

Breathing a sigh of relief, I walked down the familiar hall, and made a left turn.  When I walked into the room, Elizabeth was sitting in her wheelchair, looking ahead, in waiting for her dinner to be brought in.  I made sure to get close enough so she could see me, said hello, and introduced myself.

What a beautiful moment for me when her eyes and face brightened up in recognition and remembrance!

We started talking, and she related to me that my mom, and our family have been in her thoughts.  She talked about the treats we brought her, and how she enjoyed getting to know Mom, and the visits we shared.

Then she asked the question.  “How is Mary?”

As gently as I could, I let her know that she passed away a few months ago, and that she died a peaceful death.  I told her that it was my mom’s time.

Elizabeth’s eyes started to tear up, so I comforted her, and let her know what a wonderful time Mom had with her, and that Mom appreciated her friendship.  Elizabeth told me that Mom brought sunshine into her life, and that because of my mother, she still goes to Bingo and the Rosary.  She said my Mom was fun and feisty, and that was a good thing!

I remember when Mom would wonder why she was still alive at such an old age…much older than she expected to live.  I always let her know that she touches many hearts just because of who she is, and that all the prayers that she offers for everyone is part of her Divine Purpose.  She literally prayed for hours and hours for everyone she knew.

Now, it is being revealed to me one person after another, what my mother meant to them and how she touched their hearts.  She left love, and a piece of her heart with all that knew her or crossed her path.

Through my mom’s journey, I am learning that we all strive to understand God’s Divine Purpose for our lives, and we all believe that we fall short.  However, our Divine Purpose is revealed many times through our daily interactions and choices to love and forgive.  It is in taking the needed steps when we hear the Holy Spirit’s familiar whispers to our hearts…moving past the fear and uncertainty that we feel and making the choice to reach out to those hearts in need of validation and love.

My prayer is that the Lord fill me with the humbleness and purity of heart that my mother possessed.  And I pray for Him to use me as a vessel to hold and pass on His love to all He sends me.

 

 

 

 


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This is the Day

This is the day the Lord has made.  Let us rejoice and be glad in it!

This is the last day of 2015.  Usually, it is a day of pondering all that has happened in the last year, and wondering what the new year will bring.  Many will also start lists of resolutions in order to better their lives, or the lives of their families.

All of these things are good, when we keep them in the right context of our lives.

I decided to do something different this year. Instead of looking back, and looking forward, I am choosing to be in the moment. The Lord has given me this day…this moment.  What will I do with it?

As my day unfolds, I will stay open to His voice.  I will open my heart to His presence in a purposeful way.

How many times will He put new souls in front of me?  I will keep open to the Holy Spirit, and really SEE each person…including the ones I see every day.   I ask the Lord to allow me to be a vessel, so that His love pours out of me through a smile, words exchanged, or a kindness.

As I go through my day, I choose to focus on the blessings in my life…they are countless!  My greatest blessing is my husband and our marriage.  Thank you, Jesus, for a marriage relationship so strong that we are one in all ways.  Because YOU live in us and bind us together in and through YOU. 

Thank you for my sons, their wives, and our first grandson, who is due to enter our physical world in February.

Thank you for the family that you designed me to be a part of.  For my sisters and their families and friends.

Thank you for the friends that are deeply intertwined in my heart and always there for me…help me to always be there for them in their need.

Thank you for the beautiful home, which to this day, I am amazed that we have been blessed with.

Thank you for the comforts you are providing…plentiful food and drink, accessible water, a heating system that keeps us cozy, inspiring and entertaining books, beautiful music, movies that fill my heart with faith, love and hope.

Thank you for always providing our needs and the desires of our hearts…for your Holy Spirit knows those true desires and needs in a way that we cannot even comprehend.

Thank you for the difficulties of this day and this moment.  I trust that all things work toward good for those who love You.

Yes,  sometimes it is very appropriate to look back, remember, savor the past.  And in the hope of the Lord, to look forward to the New Year and our future in Him.

But, for me, TODAY, I choose to live in this present moment of love.

This is the day the Lord has made, let us rejoice and be glad in it!

 

 

 


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Our Weakness

Since my mom passed away in September, many emotions have been ebbing in and out of my heart.  I know this is a normal part of the grieving process, so I am attempting to allow  myself to feel each emotion as it comes.  Along with all the emotions, comes the questions of what I could have done better.  How many times I let my selfishness keep me from enjoying more time with my mom and doing more than I did for her.  And hidden in the back of my mind and heart, are the questions about the things that came between us in the past.  The growing up years.

Although the recent years of living with my mom brought us closer together, each of us learning to forgive and overlook weaknesses, these questions were lingering in my subconscious mind.

The other day I was thinking of my mother, and could feel her presence.  I told her I was sorry for all the ways I let her down, and for not always being there for her in the way I should have been.

Instantaneously,  I heard her voice.  She said, “You did the best you could.  And I did the best I could.”

Those words, simple as they were, really broke through to me.  In this life, as humans, we will always fall short.  No matter how much we love someone, and no matter how hard we try to do the right things…we will always fall short.  I realized that my mom loved all of us so much all through the years, and she never stopped loving us.  Even though she was the perfect mother for us, she was not perfect.

And neither am I. 

And that is ok.

Dear Lord, thank you for shining your beautiful, healing, comforting light on our families.  Thank you for filling our hearts with your love, and then touching those we love through our imperfections.  Thank you for always working through us…even when we are unaware of your presence, or  not “feeling it.”  For it is in our weakness that your power is made perfect.

 

 But he said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ’s power may rest on me.  2 Corinthians 12:9

 

 


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Beauty and Love are Always to be Found

Since my mother’s death in September, it has been hard for me to focus on the feelings and truths that are waiting for me to acknowledge.

It’s  not that I am consciously afraid of the feelings that will bubble up, but more that I know the immense tidal wave of feelings and memories that will engulf me, and I just need “me time” to sort it all out, and actually have the time to feel, face and process all that the Holy Spirit reveals to me. 

My heartfelt thanks and gratitude go out to all of you that have prayed for my mom, me, and my family, and also for your love and support.  An extra thank you to Tina, who reached out to me in her special way, to empathize and encourage me to write.  She knows that writing helps me to sort things out, and hopefully my search and struggle will help others who may be experiencing similar things.

Right now I am feeling overwhelmed, with the magnitude of what is occurring in our country and the world, and also with the tapestry of my own  life.  Although none of us will ever know the full beauty of our life tapestries until the Lord reveals them to us in His Glory in heaven, I feel as though some of the golden threads will be made visible to my eyes, through the Holy Spirit.  Somehow, the Lord will open my eyes and heart to understand the reasons for events in my life, and also the lessons that I was meant to learn through each struggle.  How everything was interconnected, and how the Lord always leads us to beauty, even through things we consider to be evil and ugly.

Beauty and Love are always to be found, especially when things are the darkest…especially in the midst of pain, struggle, and any evil that Satan wreaks on our lives.

So I ask for your patience, as I trudge forward, one step at a time.  I ask the Lord to use me as a vessel, to touch hearts that need to be touched with love and comfort.

This past Saturday, I went grocery shopping.  As I listened to Christmas music while strolling the aisles with my cart, my eyes caught the rice pudding.  The delicious, all natural rice pudding that I always bought for my mom.  All of a sudden, I was overcome with emotion.  It was an all consuming sadness, happiness, and love, all at once.  I felt the presence of the Holy Spirit, and  just stood there, looking at the pudding, unable to move.  I allowed myself to feel all of it fully, and then just moved on.

After that, little snippets of memories kept popping up.

The awesome birthday parties mom gave us.  Mine was a fall birthday, so the decorations were always fall themed…lots of orange and black crepe paper and pumpkins.  Orange, yellow, and brown flowers on my cake, and honeycombed bright orange  pumpkin centerpieces.  I absolutely LOVE fall, and those birthday parties are probably one of the reasons I love it so much!

The delicious soft boiled eggs she made for me mixed with pieces of white bread.  When I was feeling a little sick, the eggs were so comforting to me.

Playing cards and board games with mom…she was the master of Canasta!

The way she always had something to serve to visitors.  Even if it was store bought cookies and coffee, or sharing our dinner, there was always something to offer to guests.

The grocery store.  When Mom first moved in with us, she would go grocery shopping with me, using her cane.  She would just want to buy everything, mostly sweets, so we got two carts and we both filled them.  Then she started using her walker, which then led to a wheelchair.  Although it was stressful when she shopped with me, it was sad when she no longer asked to go.

As soon as I walked into the house after shopping, she would always ask, “What goodies did you get?”  Meaning, cheesies, donuts, ice cream, cookies, pudding, etc.  I tried to limit them a little, but she  ended up getting most of what she wanted.

“The rosary is on at three thirty; would you like to pray it with me?”  When I finally accepted Mom’s invitation to pray with her, our relationship changed.  I remember one occasion vividly.  While we were praying, I looked over at her face.  There is no other way to describe what I saw…her face was illuminated and transformed.  I could literally see the Holy Spirit shining from her.

The many times she told me to just relax.  There was always so much to get done after work and on weekends to stay caught up as well as I could.  She was always telling me to let things go and just relax.  Maybe I should have listened???

On one of the days right before she passed away, my sister asked how she felt.  Mom said, “I’m good, but not as good as I will be in February.”  When my sister asked her what happens in February, she said, “I am going to have a great grandson!”

At one point, I said, “Mom, you know you will see your great grandson once you are in heaven.”  She looked at me with a glint in her eye, and said “I know, but I am not ready to leave this world yet.”

One night when she was having a hard time sleeping due to her breathing issues, I climbed in bed with her, and held her hand.  I asked her if it was ok that I was in bed next to her.  Her answer?  “We should do this more often.”

The look of wonder in her eyes the day before she died, when she looked straight into my eyes and said, “You have the most beautiful blue eyes I have ever seen!”  And then she called me “Jan” and proceeded to tell me about her daughter, Bernadette, and her husband that take care of her.  She said they did such a good job, but she worries that they do too much and worries about their health.

That moment when our eyes connected, when she was so weak and had gone through another breathing episode.  She asked me if I gave her “the pill” yet.  I “knew” that she meant that she was ready to pass on…she was ready to leave.  I am not sure why she thought there was one “pill” that would allow her to die, but I do know that she trusted me and she was telling me that her time on earth was ending.

Where does this all lead to?

Beauty and Love are always to be found, especially when things are the darkest…especially in the midst of pain and struggle.  And too many times, we do not understand the truth of that, until our world is shaken.  Until that person is taken away from us.  Until a stressful or difficult situation is behind us. 

I take great comfort in this truth:

And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to his purpose.  Romans 8:28

 

 

 


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Changed

Sometimes the Lord works ever so gently in our lives, that for a time, we are totally unaware of the personal healing that is occurring from the inside out.

This morning I was thinking of the changes that have occurred in my heart in the past few years.  Although I am now aware that Jesus was with me and loved me throughout my whole life (as He is with and loves you), a special moment happened to me, which is described on my About Page , that guided me to an intimate relationship with Jesus, and completely changed the course of my life.

What drew me so close to Jesus?  It was His mother.

After many years of closing my heart to the pure love and sweetness of Mary, the mother of God, out of the blue came the overwhelming calling to pray the rosary!  It was like I almost did not have a choice, the calling was so strong.  I started praying the rosary every day, meditating on events in the life of Jesus and his family, and also meditated on the humble and open spirit of Mary.

Mary led me to her Son, Jesus.  I no longer just knew about Jesus, I started to know Jesus personally.  His love and his presence captivated and held me in his peace and love.  While I meditated on the rosary, which is based on scripture, I started praying for specific intentions for friends, family and coworkers.  Miracles started happening all around me, with many prayers being answered, and many lives being changed.  The Holy Spirit opened my eyes to the people in need around me, and also opened my ears to His whispers of those I am called to pray for.

So, I have been thinking…how has my relationship with Jesus changed my life?  There are a few things that come to mind.  Maybe you have noticed some of the same changes in your life?

 

No matter what happens from day to day, I know in my heart that the Lord will turn every situation toward good, both for me and His Kingdom.

When I meet or know of someone who is living in an ungodly way, I know that it is the evil of Satan that has infiltrated his/her life and heart.  If it is someone I have the opportunity to talk with, I focus on learning about what they have experienced in life, and get to know the Jesus that lives in their heart.  I share His love with them.  If it is someone that I know of, but do not have the opportunity to personally minister to, I pray for him/her…a lot…as in that person almost becomes a part of me for the time I am called to pray.

I have a calmness of spirit that I never had in the past.

The desire for mindless entertainment has left me.  I am extremely selective with music, books, TV shows, and movies.

In the past, I was very preoccupied with the paranormal.  I could not get enough of watching, reading and researching ufo phenomenon, aliens, ghosts, mediums, paranormal “powers”, demonic possessions, etc.  I literally was obsessed with those subjects, and because of my ability to “feel spirits” I was deceived into thinking I should develop my so called “powers.”  A visit with my priest, who I shared all of this with, lead to him praying over me, and instantaneously I was healed.  While I was being prayed over, I physically felt a dark spirit being lifted up through my body and out of the top of my head.  I felt a lightness and pureness of spirit that I never felt before, and those temptations or interest never returned.  Praise God!

The Lord has blessed me with a keen sense of discernment.  My eyes have been opened to see both the goodness and the very real evil that is around us every day…including the evils of promiscuity, homosexual behavior and homosexual “marriage”, abortion (the slaughter of the innocents which is Satanic), pride, and rebellion.

The Holy Spirit has gifted me with the ability to discern spirits.  I feel the spirit of most people I meet…sometimes even from a distance.  No matter what the person conveys through actions or speech, the Lord allows me to see straight through to their heart.  In that way, I know what intentions need prayed for.

I feel more love for all people, and desire for them to know Christ.

All in all, the most prevalent change in my life is the complete faith that God is with me, and with all of His children, every minute.  God the Father, God the Son, and God the Holy Spirit is one with me.  He lives inside of me, and I live in Him.

Wherever we walk, it is Holy Ground, because we carry Him with us.  Isn’t that amazing?

And, no, life is not always easy.  And we will all fall and sin.  However, Jesus is always there loving us, and He is always waiting for us to confess, repent, and get back up to follow Him and enjoy His presence in our lives.

What changes has your relationship with Jesus brought to your life?

 


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In the Moment

This morning I saw something that troubled me greatly, and I feel compelled to share my experience to maybe open some eyes to the sneaky ways Satan slithers into our lives.  For he is the master of deception.

My daily commute usually includes a stop at Panera’s.   As I was making my way out of the restaurant after purchasing my coffee this morning, a thirty something year old man pushed out of the door ahead of me and went over to his car.  I was parked next to him, and was surprised to hear him talking with his little son (about two years old) who had been left alone in the back seat, strapped into his car seat.  It concerned me that this son was left in the car while his dad went in to get coffee.  Then, to my surprise, he again left his son in the back seat, closed and locked the door, and went back into the restaurant.  I waited and watched to make sure the little one was ok, and I could see the father was right inside, and kept checking through the window.  I looked into the back seat, and saw that the little boy was holding a cell phone, engrossed with whatever was playing on the screen.  Wow…I was just thinking that this father did not fully understand the preciousness of that son that he left alone in the car.  If he did, his son would be in line with him…spending beautiful time together in the moment.

Then, as I pulled out of the parking lot and proceeded to drive to work, all around me appeared people with cell phones either on their ears or in their hands in front of them.

It hit me like a ton of bricks…we, as a society, have allowed ourselves to be “marketed” to think that being stuck to 24/7 news, cell phones and social media is being cool and “necessary.”  We have been deceived into thinking that whatever is out there in the phone scrolling or tech world,  is necessary to our day to day life, and somehow more important than the life that is actually happening around us.

Have we forgotten how to think in the silent moments?  Why are we tempted to pick up that cell phone at every stop sign, red light, or even while we are driving to fill up every open moment?  Why do we need to fill our minds with endless dribble, instead of allowing our hearts to have quiet time?  It is sad, and actually comical to watch a family or group of friends sitting around, all staring and scrolling on their phones.  How did we allow Satan to lead us to this absurdness?

What we are losing is the ability to enjoy downtime.  Time where we can take a break to enjoy the sights, smells, sounds, and people around us.  Time to savor the beauty of God’s creation, and time to be one with Him in silence or through the relationship with those around us.

No…I am not talking about relationship as in a social media post, or an email or text. 

I am talking about enjoying relationship through actually being in the presence of those we love, or are in the midst of, each moment.  It is focusing on the life going on around us in the moment, and focusing on the people we are withNot focusing and being lured away by a cold, lifeless piece of electronics.

Parents, husbands, wives, friends, sisters, brothers, grandparents, sons, daughters, grandchildren…when you are drawing your last breath on this earth, you will not be looking for your phone or the internet.  You will be yearning for your loved ones and to be in relationship with them, either spiritually or physically.

And even more important, you will be yearning for love and relationship with your heavenly father.

Be sure to build those relationships with the Lord and with each other, during the life you were gifted with, instead of wasting time on inanimate objects!

Be a blessing…and enjoy the blessings…in the moment.

 

 

Two people are better off than one, for they can help each other succeed. If one person falls, the other can reach out and help. But someone who falls alone is in real trouble. Likewise, two people lying close together can keep each other warm. But how can one be warm alone? A person standing alone can be attacked and defeated, but two can stand back-to-back and conquer. Three are even better, for a triple-braided cord is not easily broken.  Ecclesiastes 4:9–12

For you were called to freedom, brothers. Only do not use your freedom as an opportunity for the flesh, but through love serve one another.  Galatians 5:13

See how very much our Father loves us, for he calls us his children, and that is what we are! But the people who belong to this world don’t recognize that we are God’s children because they don’t know him.   1 John 3:1

Let us hold unswervingly to the hope we profess, for he who promised is faithful.  And let us consider how we may spur one another on toward love and good deeds,  not giving up meeting together, as some are in the habit of doing, but encouraging one another—and all the more as you see the Day approaching.   Hebrews 10:23-25

 

 

 


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Opportunities to Grow

Being competitive in any way has never been my strongpoint.  My way for most of my life was to stay back in the shadows, happy to be in a supportive and edifying role.  I thrive working in the background, being the person that loves to observe and help in ways that often go unnoticed.

Very recently, I am realizing that the Lord has been working in me and through me, freeing me to reach out further than ever before.  Every day there are opportunities that are placed in front of me, and I can no longer ignore them.  I believe that the Holy Spirit is guiding me, and I will not say no to the opportunities that the Lord provides…either for sharing His love with others, or for my own personal growth.  He is changing me from the inside out, and I trust Him to guide me.

It’s funny where enlightenment and growth seem to show up.  My son and daughter in law (Mike and Nicole) from Colorado were just here for a visit during the Easter Season.  It was  wonderful seeing them and spending time with them.  Now, I must tell you, they are extremely competitive, especially in the game department.  Both of  them are very bright, and especially shine when playing word games like Scrabble.

In a nutshell, I have always loved to play games, especially word games, however I always played just for fun.  I never took the time to figure or develop a strategy.

That would change when Michael asked my to play “Words With Friends” with them online.

It all started great, and I was having a good time going back and forth with each of them, enjoying the casual game.  Then POW…they started REALLY playing.  It took me off guard, and it felt overwhelming.  How do they find words that bring in so many points in one play?  How do they find ways to use small lower point letters, and work game magic with them?

I started to really watch their strategy, and how they play the game.  What I learned from them taught me to become a better player, but much more important, it taught me a lesson about life.

You see, the mistake I was making in “Words With Friends” is that I looked at the hand I was dealt, and found words I could make using those letters.  Then I randomly found a place to fit them in.  What Mike and Nicole do, is look for the opportunities (Triple letter, triple word, double letter, etc) and find a way to use that opportunity with what they have in their hand.  Most of the time, they found a way to use those opportunities, and their strategy worked amazingly.

Not only did this way of thinking change the way I play word games, it also helped me to understand where I could achieve more growth as a Christian.

We were all given certain talents, personalities and gifts from the Lord.  We have the choice to take the hand that we were dealt and just randomly put ourselves out there, without much thought or direction.  Or, as I learned, we can ask the Lord to open our eyes so that we may see the opportunities He places in our lives each day.  Once we are aware of those opportunities, we can choose to look for ways to utilize the talents and gifts God has blessed us with, to work with and take advantage of the opportunities presented to us.  (Notice I said take advantage of the opportunities…I did not say take advantage of people.)  We will  not only grow as human beings, we will also grow as Christians, shining the light of Jesus to all that we meet.

One more lesson I learned, is that even when we are aware of certain opportunities, we may find that our unique skill set, personality, or gifts may not be compatible.  Just like not having the letters needed to  take advantage of that triple word score…we need to just let it go, and allow someone else to shine with it.

God is loving us and showering us with blessings every day. He is right there with us as we learn to realize the goodness and love within our hearts. He is always patient and merciful as we learn to see and use the opportunities He gifts us with…so we can become closer to Him and share Him with the world.

What opportunities are you considering? 

 


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Real Change

Are you ready to take that step to make a real change in  your life?  I’m not talking about  things like earning a new degree, finding a new job, getting married, losing weight, eating healthier, enjoying a new hobby, exercising more,…etc, etc.  Those kinds of things are important, and can lead to a certain degree of happiness, but that is not what your spirit is searching for.

Your spirit is searching for the truth.  Your spirit is searching for peace.  Your spirit is searching for love.

You don’t have to search far to find what you are looking for.  Jesus already loves you, and is right there in your midst.  He has always been there.  You know the little nudges you have been feeling; the questions about faith and God that you just can’t seem to shake off.

You know He is there, but haven’t been able to take that step out in faith.  Something is holding you back from letting go and just inhaling the healing, saving grace of God.

You know who you are.  You know that you SAY you believe, but what is keeping you from opening the door to allow the Holy Spirit to flood your life?  Your life is filled with love and good deeds but you are still searching…

When everything in your life is going smoothly, just the way you planned it to go, you put your faith and the Lord on the back burner.  “The Lord wants me to be happy” you say…as you carry on your day to day life without much of a change.  Kind of a lukewarm existence.  Believing that Jesus is your savior…after all, you’ve accepted Him in your heart, stating that “Jesus loves me as I am.”   You are traveling through life almost at a standstill.  One decision away from a true, intimate relationship with Him, which only requires your desire to love Him back and please Him with your life.

Yes, Jesus loves you.  How do you love Him back?

And then comes the time of sadness, suffering and despair.  When those times are happening, what are the thoughts running through your mind?  “Lord, why have you allowed these things to happen?  Why is it always me?  Haven’t I suffered enough?  Haven’t we all suffered enough?  Where are you now, Lord?”   These thoughts and torments swirl through your being and stubbornly you shut the door on the Lord.  He is right there, and waiting for you to accept His love and peace, but you are too busy trying to “fix” things yourself.  Once again you decide that Jesus will understand.  It’s just not the right time to turn your heart and life over to Him.  After the crisis is over…maybe then.

What will it take for the Lord to get your attention? Good times, bad times, what???

He loves you in a way that you cannot imagine.  He is waiting to infuse your heart, body, and soul with His Holy Spirit.  However, He will not intrude where He is not wanted or invited.  He is waiting for your commitment of love and fidelity to His Sacred Heart.

Which part of your life will you keep from Him?

 

And we know that for those who love God all things work together for good, for those who are called according to his purpose.  Romans 8:28

For God so loved the world, that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life.   John 3:16

 

 

 

 

 


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One Heart at a Time

Yesterday, as my husband and I grabbed our morning coffee on the way to work, we were not greeted in the usual, friendly way we are accustomed to.  Most every morning, we enjoy pleasant conversation with the very warm and smiling staff.

That was not the case yesterday.  We were called to the register of the one young woman who seems to be in her own little world.  She did not look us in the eye, did not smile, and did not offer us any friendly banter.  She gave us our coffee, took our money, and delivered our breakfast sandwiches.  All of this without the least bit of a smile or acknowledgement at all.

So…why am I telling you this?

It is so easy to judge people by their actions, and by what we perceive them to be.  To tell you the truth, in times past, I would have probably written a note, or sent an email to the manager to make sure he/she was aware of this employee’s lack of customer service.  I would have been indignant as a paying customer, making sure that “they” knew how unhappy I was with the service I felt I deserved in their restaurant.

But yesterday, I felt something much different.  My husband and I both felt pain for this woman, who for some unknown reason, is visibly devoid of joy.  It was not the first time we noticed her behavior.

The first thing I thought about was to pray for her, and to try to brighten her day whenever we see her.  Instead of allowing whatever darkness she has in her life to consume us, we made the choice to share The Light in us with her.  And I think that we will send her a special little card anonymously, with a letter inside, letting her know that she is loved and treasured…by us and by Jesus who loves her more than she could ever fathom.

Because of this encounter, my eyes and heart are more open to the needs of the ones I meet everyday.

Through the Lord, we can touch so many lives with His Love.   Especially during this Lenten Season, let’s make a commitment to really see the hearts that are hiding behind joyless eyes.  Sometimes those eyes are angry, sad or desperate…or maybe even trying to camouflage with a fake smile.  Let’s look past all that, focus on the heart, and ask the Holy Spirit to direct us and to bless them.

What a different world we will live in as we share God’s love…one heart at a time!