Perspective and the Big Picture

16 Jul
I love my babies...in real life I'd never get away with dressing them:)

I love my babies…in real life I’d never get away with dressing them:)

The way we look at things in life really determines our day to day joy level.

How far we see into the future (the big picture) affects how we look at the day to day trials we come across.

I created the illustration above to give a visual of just that, and hopefully make you chuckle, but it illustrates a pretty deep message too.

The “Whoa is me.” perspective (see cat…lol), and the “By golly, it’s not great, but I’m going to see the positive in this.” (see dog…lol).
(By the way, their personalities are really like this:).

The better we see the big picture and not microfocus on the day to day frustrations, well, the frustrations really won’t feel so big.
Granted, I know we all go through various degrees of stressful situations, events, relationships,  etc. which can feel very overwhelming.
I am not taking away the fact we all feel stress, frustratation, (fill in the blank of whatever emotion you are feeling),
but it’s important to read the verse above when feeling those emotions.

Do you have a heavenly perspective?
This “stuff” we go through now…man, it’s going to be nothing when we see the glory of the Lord!

I ask you this then…
Since we do not know when the Lord is coming back (to heal this broken world but He is),
are you going to have the cat’s perspective or the dog’s perspective?

Look at yourself in the mirror.
Seriously look.
Let’s face it.
You can only control you.
You can only control how little or much you go to the Lord and ask for Him to give you strength, peace, comfort, etc.
You can only control how much you ask Him to show you the big picture.
You are the only one, with the Lord’s help, who can make you see the positive in whatever stress, worry, and frustration you feel.

The big picture is really bright even if you don’t see it just yet.
What happens today as life throws you curves?…
Well, I bet we will have wished we smiled a bit more when we look back a year from now,
five years from now, on this particular day or tomorrow, or the next day.

Happy Fourth of July Weekend!

7 Jul
Just a spattering of the fun over the July 4th weekend:)

Just a spattering of the fun over the July 4th weekend:)

You Can’t Do It Alone!

3 Jul
June 15, 2014 - GH - A wonderful preserve with a neat trail system to walk or ride bikes on...Hofma Preserve if I remember correctly.

June 15, 2014 – Grand Haven.  A wonderful preserve with a neat trail system to walk or ride bikes on…Hofma Preserve, if I remember correctly.

If you believe that you can do this life without the Lord you are being fooled!
Whether you’re in a state of mind of “happy” or “discouraged” – you NEED Him.
Period.

The biggest lie the devil wants us to believe is that “we know it all”…”we are smart enough”…”we don’t need anybody”…”every one else is wrong, but we’re right”…”we KNOW best”…”we’re strong enough”…that “well, I can’t “see” Him, so, why believe in Him?”.

Let me ask you, “How’s it working out for you?”

Do you feel good on the surface?  You say, “Life’s treating me pretty good.”
(Or do you admit that, man, you feel like you are being put through the wringer?)

Either way, let me ask you again, “How’s it really working out for you?”

Do you wish you had a little more confidence to make it the next job interview?
Do you wish you had a little more strength to make it through the work day?
Do you wish you had a little more clarity making decisions for you child?
Do you wish you could get over the fear of making it on your own without a significant other?
Do you wish you could stick to a decision instead of wavering and changing your mind?
Do you wish you had a little more energy to make dinner for the kids?
Do you wish you had a little more patience with your spouse?
Do you wish you had a little more time in the day to get things done?
Do you wish you more financially stable?
Do you wish you worried less?
Do you wish you trusted more?

Well, you can stop WISHING!
Stop thinking you can do it on your own.
He promises the following to us which is SO COOL!

1 John 5:14-15
“This is the confidence we have in approaching God:
that if we ask anything according to his will, he hears us.
And if we know that he hears us—whatever we ask—we know that we have what we asked of him.”

See the action we must take is to APPROACH Him first…then ASK.
He provides!

This is also important…
just because YOU think you KNOW what is best for you the Lord knows the ABSOLUTE best for you, so,
He will do even more than our human minds could even dream up.
We sell HIM short so many times.

Like,
“Jesus, hey, yea, it’s me (sigh)…having a little concern about what to do, so, well (sigh),
I’m just praying for you to give me JUST a little relieve from (fill in the blank)…nothing too big for you, right?  Ok, well, I will trrrryyy not to worry, and I’ll do my best to trust you and to keep coming to you, but, well, (sigh) you know (my ex, my spouse, my boss, my situation, etc.) really is just alot, so, just know I’m asking you for help, buuuuut I know you’re busy and I’m not the only one asking for help, so, well, I will trust you just enough to hope for something good (insert – cause I don’t have enough faith to believe that you know what’s best for me).  Love you.  Over and out…peace…Amen.”

Then what do you do?
You worry, you fret…you forgot you even asked for His help, albeit, a weak prayer (lol).
See, He hears you no matter what and He’s going to do take care of you COMPLETELY!

This is a promise from Him:
Philippians 4:19
 
“And my God will supply every need of yours according to his riches in glory in Christ Jesus.”

I think people who believe in the Lord forget this just as much as people who don’t believe in the Lord.

So, give a shout out to the Lord today…trust Him…He’s got your back:).

Because I love her…:)

1 Jul
To the only Ohio State gal I love and miss...can't wait to see you soon in MI! :)

To the only Ohio State gal I love and miss…can’t wait to see you soon in MI! :)

Squirrel!

26 Jun
Going through a drive-thru is 2nd to none in Gracie's eyes:)

Going through a drive-thru is 2nd to none in Gracie’s eyes:)

Look at my sweet, sweet Gracie…distracted one moment and giving her full attention the next.
In life we are easily distracted – with good and bad – including intentions.
Stay focused and keep your eye on the end goal.
KNOW that no harm will come to you if you stay focused and excited to make the decisions that make life better.
Take a moment to read the verses above.
That second verse is a PROMISE to those who seek Him!
He’s protecting you if you only look to Him.

Are you looking to build a better financial future for yourself?
Then stay focused on putting $20 a day into savings.
It’s easy to get distracted by making excuses and blaming your circumstances (and people) for what you think you should already have.

Are you looking out for the best interests of your children?
Then stay focused on the goal and take steps to ensure they receive the best.
It’s easy to get distracted by promises made and then broken.

Are you looking for better relationships in your daily life?
Then stay focused on speaking kindly to all.
It’s easy to get disgusted by those who slight you, the know-it-allers, the belittlers, the one-uppers, the prideful, the “button pushers”.

Are you looking to walk closer with the Lord?
Then stay focused on the goal and take time to read the Word, listen to praise music, fellowship with other Christians.
It’s easy to be an island with no visitors.

In the daily walk of life…
STAY FOCUSED
STAY EXCITED
LOOK UP
He’s NOT going to let you down!
:)

It’s a Jungle Out There!

24 Jun
June 2014

June 2014

Have you ever been in the midst of life’s “jungle”?
You can’t see the sustaining river of life right behind you waiting for you to take a drink.

Are you working to clear the jungle out of your life?
Or are you sitting in the midst of the weeds, ivy, and other undergrowth
waiting for it “just to disappear“?

Are you making effort to clear the view?!
This means getting into the thick of the jungle
…yup, it means reaching out to someone you might not really want to reach out to…
… it means not thinking bad about someone first, but seeing the good they have to offer…
…it still means not taking the defense towards someone…
…it means taking the scary steps of trying something new…
(with work, with school, with kids, with ex’s, with friends, with choices period).

If you aren’t quite seeing the river…read the verse above again.
The Lord “will even make a way in the wilderness”.

I’m an eternal optimist by nature…it takes a lot to upset me…I guess it’s because I try to keep my view of the river clear.
It’s because through prayer, reading the Word, being sorry for my mistakes, seeing the good in people…
the Lord has always helped me clear away the undergrowth.
Sometimes the river view gets blocked,
but when I actively begin clearing the view…
…by looking to Him…
…reading the Word…
…reaching out to others…
…by praying…
the view becomes clearer…the river quenches my thirst…the Lord sustains.

Be positive today…when you want to get mad…be glad:).

When I Walk Through Woods…

18 Jun

I love how cool a forest is…
the canopy of leaves protect from a hot sun…
…the rustle of leaves soothes as they dance in the breeze…
I love how the Psalmist in the verse gives us a visual through his words of a forest singing:).
Next time you travel through an enchanting forest take notice of the trees swaying to the music of the wind….
Pause and listen to the groans of trees adjusting their limbs.
The trees are alive.
Old…young….skinny…shapely…soft…hard…colors…blooms.
I think it’s cool the Lord created such a tapestry for us to enjoy:).

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