Worry

I often find myself worrying about things. I worry about how I’m going to afford the things we need, about how my kids are going to grow up, about my job, and sometimes about little things that mean nothing in the grand scheme of things.

The thing is, very few if any of the things I mentioned above consist of anything that I can control. I mean, I do work, so I do have the responsibility to budget wisely, so I guess I can have a direct effect on my financial situation, but I can’t control what is going to go wrong at any given moment, such as tires that need replacing. With my kids, I have the responsibility to give my best to them, and to bring them up in the “nurture and admonition of the Lord,” but I can’t control the way they think, the way they feel, or even what they do. When it comes to my job, I can do the best that I can with the work I am given, but I can’t control the actions of others, nor do I get to make final decisions on matters that affect the company as a whole. So again, I can only do so much.

So, why do I worry about these things? What is it that I think I can do by worrying? If I were to be honest with myself, I probably worry because I feel like I have some sort of control over the situation if I worry. It makes me feel like I am doing something by worrying. But really, do I even have a chance at making a difference in a situation by worrying about it?

According to Matthew 6:25-34 says, “25“For this reason I say to you, do not be worried about your life, as to what you will eat or what you will drink; nor for your body, as to what you will put on. Is not life more than food, and the body more than clothing? 26“Look at the birds of the air, that they do not sow, nor reap nor gather into barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not worth much more than they? 27“And who of you by being worried can add a single hour to his life? 28“And why are you worried about clothing? Observe how the lilies of the field grow; they do not toil nor do they spin, 29yet I say to you that not even Solomon in all his glory clothed himself like one of these. 30“But if God so clothes the grass of the field, which is alive today and tomorrow is thrown into the furnace, will He not much more clothe you? You of little faith! 31“Do not (J)worry then, saying, ‘What will we eat?’ or ‘What will we drink?’ or ‘What will we wear for clothing?’ 32“For the Gentiles eagerly seek all these things; for your heavenly Father knows that you need all these things. 33“But seek first His kingdom and His righteousness, and all these things will be added to you. 34“So do not worry about tomorrow; for tomorrow will care for itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own.” (NASB)

According to this passage, God has everything under control.  I have no ability to even add one hair to my own head, let alone affect the situations that may come up.  I am not in control.  That is God’s place, and every time that I try to grab that control back into place, I end up messing things up.  I can’t do anything by worrying, but by God’s grace and with His leading, I am able to make a difference in my life and the lives of others.  I need to take my mind off what I need – according to this passage, God already knows we need food and clothes – and I need to put my mind on God’s kingdom and on His righteousness, and let God take care of the rest.  That doesn’t mean I don’t do my best in all situations, that just means, I do my best, and then I let God have control and work His will.

How comforting to realize that I don’t have to take care of everything.  I just have to do my best and seek God – and He will lead me in His will – even if that means that someday, I lose everything.  God is in control.  I can rest in Him.

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My Recent Thoughts

**Author’s Note** I apologize in advance that this is not quite as eloquent as I imagined it to be.  I have a tendency to ramble and go off on tangents.  Also, this is not meant for any particular person or group.  It’s just my thoughts – and more toward myself than anything.  **END NOTE**

I hear it all the time.  We’re supposed to be tolerant – to the point of denying our own personal convictions so that we don’t “offend” someone else.  I’ve been doing a lot of reading lately.  I know I know – what’s new right??  I’m ALWAYS reading.  But I’ve been getting a little deeper in my reading material lately, and if you’ve never read anything by Randy Alcorn – you really should.  He’s a very gifted author, and I was impressed from the first chapter of the books I’ve read by him so far.

But that’s not what I’m here to talk about.  I hear complaining all the time from other Christians about how Christians are getting a bum deal.  I mean, if we say we’re pro-life, we offend the pro-choice movement.  If we say we believe everything that the Bible says, with no exceptions, then we are told that we believe an outdated book that nobody can really prove is true anyway (of course I beg to differ, but that’s not what I’m here to write about today either).  If we say someone’s life-style or actions or words or whatever is contrary to what God’s Word says is true and right, we are told that we are intolerant and uncaring.  We’ve been told that in order to truly be tolerant we have to embrace these causes and make them our own.  And what’s really sad, is that many of us buy into this!!  What happened to thinking for oneself??

Now, I am proud to be a Christian, but I have to admit, I don’t show it all the time…I fail at this so often.  But I AM proud to be a Christian.  Some of what I have to say here may offend others, and for the offense, I am sorry, but for speaking what I know to be true and right, I am not sorry.  I should be doing that more often.  I shouldn’t be sitting in my chair afraid to speak up because I don’t want to hurt anyone’s feelings.  Since when did God say share the Gospel only if you’re not going to hurt someone’s feelings?  Since when did He say, don’t speak the truth, just love??  He didn’t – He said to “speak the truth IN love”  (Ephesians 4:15) – we are supposed to speak the truth BECAUSE we love those around us.

But again, I digress.

Often I hear about how all these special interest groups are allowed to get their agendas out there.  I hear Christians say, “it’s not fair, we have to keep being more tolerant of others, but they don’t have to be tolerant of us.”  It’s funny, this reminds me of Bible class when I was growing up…and our Bible Teacher, I think his name was Mr. Grist (or something like that) he always was saying “‘T ain’t fair! ‘T aint fair!” – he said that was what the Pharisees were always saying.  That’s how I always think of them now because of that class. But it gets me thinking – those who say it isn’t fair – were they really trying to get the message out there anyway?  I mean come on, let’s be honest now – how many of us honestly do that these days.  Again, I go back to my statement that I FAIL at this all the time.  I succeed at so many other things, but at THIS I fail…and this is way more important than anything else I do!!

But anyway, who said life was going to be fair?  Didn’t God say that we were going to have trials and tribulations?  Didn’t he say that if he was ridiculed we would be too??  We as Christians shouldn’t be surprised, nor should we whine and cry about it – we should “count it all joy” that we get to identify with Christ.  Our suffering is temporary, so what have we to complain about??

It’s not going to get any better just because we complain about it.  So, we might has well keep working toward getting the good news out there, but we also need to be aware that we are going to have set backs.  People ARE going to get annoyed with us.  Some of us might even get treated badly as a result.  But we are admonished to spread the good news.

I leave you with this passage (1 Peter 3:9-17 – NASB):

“To sum up, (K)all of you be harmonious, sympathetic, (L)brotherly, (M)kindhearted, and (N)humble in spirit;

9(O)not returning evil for evil or (P)insult for insult, but giving a (Q)blessing instead; for (R)you were called for the very purpose that you might (S)inherit a blessing.

10For,
(T)THE ONE WHO DESIRES LIFE, TO LOVE AND SEE GOOD DAYS,
MUST KEEP HIS TONGUE FROM EVIL AND HIS LIPS FROM SPEAKING DECEIT.
11
(U)HE MUST TURN AWAY FROM EVIL AND DO GOOD;
HE MUST SEEK PEACE AND PURSUE IT.
12
(V)FOR THE EYES OF THE LORD ARE TOWARD THE RIGHTEOUS,
AND HIS EARS ATTEND TO THEIR PRAYER,
BUT THE FACE OF THE LORD IS AGAINST THOSE WHO DO EVIL.”

13(W)Who is there to harm you if you prove zealous for what is good?

14But even if you should (X)suffer for the sake of righteousness, (Y)you are blessed (Z)AND DO NOT FEAR THEIR INTIMIDATION, AND DO NOT BE TROUBLED,

15but [a]sanctify (AA)Christ as Lord in your hearts, always being ready (AB)to make a defense to everyone who asks you to give an account for the (AC)hope that is in you, yet (AD)with gentleness and (AE)reverence;

16and keep a (AF)good conscience so that in the thing in which (AG)you are slandered, those who revile your good behavior in Christ will be put to shame.

17For (AH)it is better, (AI)if God should will it so, that you suffer for doing what is right rather than for doing what is wrong.”

~~Gabby~~

Blog Prompt: Today is Elvis’s birthday. What is your favorite Elvis song and what memories does it bring back?

This is a funny one.  Ok – I don’t know a TON of Elvis songs – I should, but the only one that comes to mind right now (and I do know more than this one lol) is “Blue Christmas.”  It’s funny because I always hated that song growing up.  We played it every year at Christmas and I just HATED it.  The “ooo ooo ooo oo oo” (and you know what I’m talkin’ about if you have heard this song lol) just drove me insane.

However, NOW, I have to say that while I still don’t “love” the song, it is one I would call my favorite – not because of the music itself, but because of the memories that come to mind when I hear it. I remember decorating the Christmas tree – sorting the ornaments – admiring the ones that we kids had made for our mom – stringing popcorn – making paper chains – laughter – fun.  Decorating our Christmas tree each year is one of my most treasured memories.  I don’t remember any fighting or arguing at that time.  All I remember is laughter and fun.

So – that’s why “Blue Christmas” is my favorite Elvis song.

~~Gabby~~

Blog Prompt: Tomorrow is Bubble Bath Day. Do you like bubble baths? If so, what is your favorite kind? If not, why?

Ohhhh a fun one today.  I absolutely LOVE LOVE LOVE LOVE LOVE bubble baths.  (Did I get a little over-enthusiastic about this?)

My favorite bubble bath scent is Sweet Pea (so far) – but I love all bubble baths – I have yet to find a scent I didn’t like.  My mom gave me some fizzy bubble bath cakes for Christmas (I guess that’s what you call ’em lol) and I can’t WAIT to use them.  In fact, I will get to have a bubble bath either tomorrow night or Saturday night to celebrate having lost 10 lbs 🙂  WOO HOO. 🙂

I just love the way that bubble bath makes me relax – and it’s fun too – it takes me back to my days as a little kid – and for just a little while I can forget about everything – about the bills, the job, the stress, the kids, everything – and go back and feel like a kid again – even for a short time.

So – that’s my bubble bath blog LOL.

~~Gabby~~

Blog Prompt: January is National Soup Month. What is your favorite soup and why?

Well – I had no idea that January was National Soup Month, but I can understand why it would be lol.  I actually have two favorites – and I cannot choose one over the other because I truly do like them equally.  They are chicken noodle soup and tomato soup.

The reason these two are my favorites is very basic – they are what my mom used to give me when I was not feeling well.  You would think that being associated with being sick would make them undesirable, but there is something oddly comforting about these two soups.  She would make me toasted cheese sandwiches and give me soup and crackers and even if I didn’t feel completely better, I would feel better – safer – stronger.

It gave me such a sense of security and love to get these from my mom when I wasn’t feeling well.  I don’t know why, it just did.  So, that’s why they are my favorite.

~~Gabby~~

Blog Prompt: Today is National Bird Day. What native wild birds are flying around your area and which ones are your favorites?


Here in Florida, the birds I see most often are different types of wading birds.  There are specifically 2 different kinds of birds I generally see, black/gray tall wading birds and smaller white wading birds.  There are TONS of them.  I’ve included some pics of both because I am not certain what types of birds these are, but I just love them.

The first bird, below, is my favorite.  The reason is that these birds are practically fearless.  I can almost walk all the way up to them…in fact I’d try if I wasn’t so worried about them biting me LOL.

These are my favorite birds that I've seen since being here.


These are my other favorites.  They are just beautiful and I see them all over the place.  I just love them.

These are my favorite white birds here in Florida.

So – those are the birds I like here in Florida.  I wish I knew what they were called.

~~Gabby~~

Blog Prompt: Today is Trivia Day. Please share a tidbit of trivia that you think no one else knows.

Ok – something about me that nobody else knows.  Hmm…I’m usually an open book, but let me dig into the recesses of my memory and see if I can’t come up with something.  Here are a couple of things.

1) Most people don’t know that I can play the clarinet.  I actually used to be quite good.  I don’t practice as much as I used to, but I still have the clarinet I played in High School and I take it out every so often, just to make sure that I can still play. I really enjoy playing.

2) Most people don’t know that I enjoy cooking – in fact, I love to make new recipes and try new things.  This may surprise some people because I often won’t try something new.  However, it’s not because I don’t like to – it’s often because I have to be careful because my stomach is often very sensitive.  I love to try new foods, and I actually have pretty eclectic tastes.  Just because I’m picky doesn’t mean that I am not a little adventurous. 🙂

So that’s two pieces of trivia about me….not very interesting though LOL.  But then – I’m not the most interesting person – and I kind of like it that way lol.

~~Gabby

Happy New Year – My Top Ten Goals for 2010

Happy New Year Everyone!!

I have given a lot of thought to what my resolutions for this year are going to be. I don’t generally make them, but I do have some goals I would like to reach this year. Some of them are just fun thing, but others I think could and probably will change my life for the better. Here are my TOP TEN goals for 2010.

1) It is my goal in 2010 to read through the entire Bible.

I have tried to do this on occasion, and I always start out well, but then I somehow get off track and don’t finish. This year, I intend to finish this goal.

2) Get involved in my church – specifically in the single parent’s ministry.

I already took step 1 and talked about it with different people in the group. Now, it is time to take step 2 and actually meet with the Single’s Ministry Pastor and start getting involved. This is going to take me out of my comfort zone because I have NEVER worked with adults (outside of work of course lol), so this is a new thing for me.

3) Get out of my house more often.

I am a homebody – I admit it. I like to sit at home on my computer (scrapping, playing games etc.) or reading a book or whatever it is that I decide to do – at home. It is time for me to get out of the house, and do some fun things with my kids – and sometimes even without my kids.

4) Yes – the age-old lose some weight.

Ok – so this is not a new one – in fact, I’ve already been working on this, so this is not just a New Year’s resolution. This is a lifestyle goal. I want to lose about 100 lbs in the next year. I can do it – but it’s going to take work. What I really mean by this is that I am going to eat healthier and in moderation. I am going to exercise and I am going to become stronger physically. I am going to have setbacks – after all, I AM human. But I truly believe that this is going to be MY year to shine. 🙂

5) Write more often.

My goal is to publish a book. Obviously that means I have to actually WRITE a book. LOL So, my goal this year is to work on my writing. I need to get back into practice. I’m not going to make some promise to write for 1/2 hour every day (or even 10 minutes), but what I am going to do is to write more often. I AM going to try to write at least 3 times a week for half an hour.

6) Make some ME time.

This one sounds pretty selfish – but in reality, it would be more selfish of me to not make any ME time. Let me explain. I have this tendency to want to do and be everything for everyone. I am a perfectionist in every sense of the word. If I can’t be or do something for someone, I feel guilty and I get down on myself. But the reality is, if I don’t take time for myself, I burn out, and then I’m not any good to anyone. So I am going to make some ME time.

7) Be more spontaneous.

I admit it, I’m a planner. This can be good, but sometimes it’s also good to be flexible. I get a little bent out of shape when things don’t go as planned, and I have a difficult time doing things on the spur of the moment. However, this year, I am going to try to be a little more spontaneous. If it’s not going to keep me from getting done with what I need to do, then I’m going to try to do it (that is IF I really want to lol).

8) Try something new every month.

Again – I don’t like to get out of my comfort zone. However, I DO like to learn new things – so each month, I am going to try to find something to learn or try something new – whether it be a new skill, a new food, or a new activity. This could be fun. 🙂

9) Turn the TV off for a whole day – at least 1x per month.

I like to watch TV. In fact, my TV is generally on from the time I get up to the time I go to bed (well when I’m home of course). So, this year, I am going to turn the TV off for one day during the month. The entire day – a full 24 hours at least. My kids will ALSO not be watching TV. This is in an effort to get us doing other activities – going for walks, having a family night, playing board games, etc. This is to draw me and my girls closer and help us forge a deeper bond, and hopefully help them to be more open with me. 🙂

10) Last, but definitely NOT least, I am going to work on getting a closer walk with God.

I already mentioned reading the Bible in a year and getting involved in my church. However, there is a deeper need here. I need to really get to know God. I have lots of book knowledge. I’ve studied God’s Word for years. But book knowledge does nothing if my relationship with God does not grow deeper. So this year, I am going to spend more time with God – reading His Word, studying His Word, and praying. And then I am really going to try to listen for His leading.

As I said earlier, this is MY year to shine. Only I have the ability to make these decisions for me. It is my responsibility to choose to shine or not, and this year, I want to be that bright star that draws others to Christ. I am going to step out of my comfort zone. I know that I am going to fail sometimes – everyone does. But I am going to use those failures to learn new lessons, and I am going to let God use those lessons to draw me closer to Him – He truly is able to work all things for good.

So, with all that said – Happy New Year everyone!! And may your dreams come true, and may God richly bless you and your families all year.

~~Gabby

Who Am I?

I’ve been doing a lot of thinking lately.  It seems that life has thrown me a lot of lemons lately, and I have been questioning who I am and what I want and what would be the wisest decisions right now.  I never thought that I would be going through this at 32 years old.  I always thought that by now I would have all the answers.  I’d know who I am and what I want and what the right path would be.  But the older I get, the more I realize that nothing is certain, and hopes and dreams can change just as much as anything else.

So, what do I do in this most uncertain time?  Do I throw in the towel and give up?  Do I keep trying, even though I am getting more and more frustrated?  What do I do?  I’ve been thinking and praying about my situation lately.  It’s been so hard to move forward with plans because everything is uncertain right now – my life, my marriage, the economy, everything.  And the only thing that has remained constant in all of this uncertainty, is my relationship with God.  

No matter how bad things have gotten, God has never left me alone to handle it all alone.  Sometimes I feel alone, but in my heart I know He is always there, waiting for me to acknowledge Him and to take the time to talk to Him and let Him talk to me.  In a way, this is probably the most amazing thing these days.  Always before, when things have gone wrong in my life, I have turned my back on God.  I have run away and blamed Him for all my misfortune, as if I had nothing to do with getting myself into the mess.  This time was different.  When my world came falling down on me in November, I thought at first I was going to crumble.  I thought I couldn’t handle it, and I wanted to throw in the towel.  My heart was broken, and nothing was going to be able to fix it.  

And then, an amazing thing happened.  I stopped feeling sorry for myself, and I immersed myself in prayer and in God’s Word.  I made what I consider to be the wisest decision I have ever made in my life.  I decided that I was going to stick with God, no matter what happened.  I wasn’t going to run this time.  I wasn’t going to let the bad things that happen to me shake my faith.  And because of that, I have been blessed.  God has taken such good care of me in the past few months (well really He’s always taken good care of me, but you know what I mean).  Whenever I begin to worry about things, such as how I am going to get food or gas or whatever the need is at the moment, God provides.

For instance, my home group has been such a blessing.  They know my situation, and they have been giving me groceries almost every single week.  I don’t think I’ve had to buy a full week’s groceries in 3 weeks!  Then last week, one of the members of my home group (who is also my friend) gave me some money.  Just prior to that happening, I had been thinking about the fact that my girls wanted to go see a movie at the “cheapy theatre.”  I had thought I was going to have enough money, but then realized I was a little short, and was feeling sad because I hate to let my girls down.  As a result of my friend giving us money, we were able to go.  That, more than anything, really brought home to me that God cares about even the little things.

But that brings me back to my original thought – who am I?  What do I want?  And what is the wisest decision at this time?  Well, I don’t know what the answer is to what is wisest at this time, but this is who I am:

First and foremost, I am a Christian, and I am wholly and completely in love with God.  Second, I am a mother.  I love my girls, and I want to be the best mother I can be to them.  To do that, I need to stay grounded in God’s Word – and sometimes that’s easier said than done with all of the things on my plate.  Third, I am a woman.  I am strong and confident.  I am able to make it through anything life throws at me with God’s, my family’s and my friends’ help.   

I still don’t know everything I want, or even what the best decision is at this point.  What I do know is that no matter what it is, God will be with me, and I can make it through whatever life brings me.

Life in General

So my life has been a little crazy lately.  I’ve been working a lot and studying a lot and spending as much time with my girls as I possibly can.

Lately, I’ve been reading a lot of self-help books.  (That’s what I mean by studying by the way.)  First, I read a book called “Common Sense Parenting.”  It’s actually very good, and has a lot of great tips and tricks.  I gleaned a lot of information from it, and I am putting it into practice, though it’s a long hard road ahead of me.  Just ask my girls…they were fine with the changes in “rewards” they receive, but boy they are not happy when they get disciplined.  I’ve heard “I hate you!” more in the last 2 1/2 months than I have ever heard.  It was a bit disconcerting at first because it’s hard to hear that from your child when  you love them so much and try to do as much good as you can.  But I’m learning that my kids say that to try to get me to change my mind about what I have decided.  It’s actually kind of funny to me now (not that I condone this kind of behavior or allow them to get away with it without consequence lol) because I know that 5 minutes later I’m going to get an apology.  Like I said, I got a lot from that book.

Next I read a book called “The Leadership Pill.”  This is a book about being an effective manager.  It’s written in parable form (which I love), and it gives a lot of great information about how to be an effective leader.  To my surprise, I found that being an effective manager is just like raising kids!!  I had to laugh when I read all of the same ideas for managing that I had read in my parenting books.  I thought that was pretty interesting.

I’m now reading the “The Five Love Languages of Children,” which is full of great advice about how to fill your child’s “love tank.”  I haven’t gotten very far in this one yet, but I have read most of it once before.  I really look forward to reading more of it.  What I have noticed so far is that it has many of the same concepts as “Common Sense Parenting.”  

I’m also reading several other books about management.  I’m finding them very interesting, and I’ve been growing in my role at work so much over the past couple of weeks.  I’m finding that as I put more of these concepts into action, I am getting a lot better results.  I’m looking forward to learning more and more as I grow in this management role.

My writing has kind of taken a back seat to everything else, but I would really like to get back into it.  Finding time (or making time) is difficult these days – we’re all so busy.  However, I’m sure I’ll get there.

Well, guess I’m going to sign off for now.

Until next time….

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