Focus On What You’ve Got, Rather Than What You’ve Not!

Before I learned to focus on what I’ve got,
rather than what I’ve not,
I used to dread the Monday
following Mother’s Day.

As if the cascade of perfect FB posts on
Mother’s Day weren’t enough to create
a case of the covets,
every conversation on Mother’s Day Monday
was about
being showered
with attention and gifts.

 Mr. 4-Ever is a great husband.

If I could, I would clone him and
give him away as Christmas presents
to women who want
a Godly man with impeccable character.

But the clone would have to come with a disclaimer.
This is a good man.
He is kind, gentle, loving, fun,
hard-working, generous, and patient.
He is creative and calm in all situations.
He is a great kisser.
but …
a Harlequin Romance novel hero … 
He. Is. Not.

Rarely do flowers or chocolates show up
on my desk.
Good behavior gifts and
just because “I love you” texts
do not happen.

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Celebrating You On Mother’s Day

Mother’s Day is an odd holiday,
isn’t it?
So many opportunities
for things to go wrong.

Vacuum cleaners and frying pan gifts aside,
women who have children eagerly wait by
mailboxes and
telephones and
on the edge of their seat
to see if anyone will acknowledge the day.

Women who are desperate for children
are expected to exuberantly celebrate those who do.

Women in the throws of child-rearing years –
the ones who could really benefit from a day off,
are the ones who work overtime
on Mother’s Day
to make sure their mother or
mother-in-law is recognized and honored.

Husbands who remember Mother’s Day
worry and fret about
what to do and how to do it.

Is a card enough?
How about chocolates?
Should there be flowers?

What about women whose mamas have died?
Mother’s Day dredges up lots of memories
with the realization there won’t be any new ones.

Women who aborted or adopted
often spend Mother’s Day lamenting
what could have been.

Mother’s Day can be a
tough day for many women.

On this Mother’s Day,
instead of letting
card companies,
old memories,
television commercials,
comparisons,
or regrets
define your day,
celebrate
who you are in Christ.

May I remind you that
before you were a mom,
before you wanted to be a mom
even before you had a mom,
God made you to be his child.

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What’s Unique About You?

  Under the odd but true category,
I wonder,
What’s unique about you?

I had every intention of taking down my
Christmas tree before Easter …
I really did!
but …
it’s still up …
and lit.

Yup, up and lit.

And, yes, I know it’s weird.

I’m always the last one on the block
to dismantle the tree,
but we had such a mild winter this year,
I just kept thinking that I would have more snowy landscapes to enjoy
from my front window as I sipped warm beverages,
listening to Christmas music in the glow of my Christmas tree.

December gave way to January, and I thought,
Whatever, just one more week and I’ll take it down.

But I never did take it down!

We laughed about
having it up on Valentine’s Day.

By St. Patrick’s Day,
I was used to it.

When the kid’s came over for Easter and said,
“Mom, the neighbors are going to think you’re nuts,”
I thought, It might be time,
but I was too busy breaking my
Lenten television fast to deal with it.

(Easter Sunday with Mr. 4-Ever)

So, here we are,
the week after Easter
and my tree is still up.

And you know what?
I’m owning it.

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3 Things Your Husband Really Wants You to Know

As someone who has
plenty of experience
with husband(s),
I assure you …

This is what your husband wants you to know.

If you don’t know my story of being
widowed twice,
you can read it here.

1.

Your husband wants you to be
committed to him.
Not just the marriage, to him!

It’s not enough to just avoid divorce.

Marriage isn’t 50-50.

Divorce is 50-50.

Marriage takes an ALL IN,
ALL THE TIME commitment.

You won’t believe how I learned this lesson!
Let me save you the humiliation.
You can read about it here.

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Surprisingly Simple Secret to A Better Life

 

If you want to be
healthier,
thinner,
think more clearly,
and enjoy life to the fullest …
the secret is surprisingly simple. 

Sleep more!

That’s right!
Sleep is the solution to
so much of what ails us.

This is marvelous news to me.
If there were an Olympic medal for sleeping,
I could bring home the gold.

WebMD.com lists 9 benefits for
a good night’s sleep.

Better overall health.
Better sex life.
Less chronic pain.
Lower risk of injury.
Better mood.
Supports weight control.
(Why didn’t they lead with this one is a mystery to me.)
Clearer thinking.
Better memory.
Stronger immunity.

Doctors tell you to sleep,
and
God tells you to rest.

But, you say,
“I’m TOO BUSY to rest!”
Me, too!

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5 Fool Proof Tips to Survive a Road Trip

Girlfriend,
if you’re planning a
big road trip,
I’ve got 5
fool proof survival tips for you!

Mr. 4-Ever and I just got home
from a 3,900 mile road trip
to FL and GA.

We criss-crossed the south
speaking at multiple events.

It was awesome!
God showed up in women’s lives magnificently.
Women came to Jesus.
They laid down shame.
They forgave themselves for not being perfect.

Can you say hallelujah?

Now let me tell you
about the road trip.

I thought 3,900 miles in the car
would be a piece of cake.
We’re on the road a lot already.
We’re together 23.5/7 anyway,
(I go potty alone)
how much different could it be?

Ha!
Being in the same OFFICE space
is A LOT different
than being
IN. THE. CAR.
IN. THE. HOTEL.
TOGETHER.
EVERY. SINGLE. MOMENT.
on a trip.

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Grumbler’s Anonymous Anyone?

Do you have anyone in your life
that’s a handful?
Someone who provokes
you to complaining
and grumbling?

Yeah, me, too.

One of my fathers-in-law was
a Golden Gloves boxing champion
for the Army during WWII.

After leaving the Army,
he joined the police force in
Milwaukee, WI. 

 

He rode motorcycles year-round
in the freezing Milwaukee, WI winters.
“Heck, yes, (except he didn’t say heck) it was cold.
We’d wrap our legs with newspaper
as insulation under our uniforms.

He was a strong man
with strong opinions
and not much of a filter
if you know what I mean.

At least, his sweet wife buffered
his coarse talk
and old-fashioned opinions
with graceful scoldings and smiles.

Then . . . his wife died. 

Suddenly,
I became the primary caregiver
for that cantankerous man! 

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God Still Speaks – Are You Listening?

Do you ever wonder
if God still speaks
to his people?

Let me assure you that He does.

Think about it.

Has a Scripture ever leapt off the page?
A passage you’ve read many times,
but suddenly,
it’s vibrant and significant
to your current situation.

Has a song on the radio
or in church brought you to tears
repenting something bitter,
or remembering something sweet?

Has the pastor delivered a sermon
and it seemed like he or she was
reading your mail?

Has a friend or stranger provided
a kind word or admonition
precisely for the season of life you’re in?

That was probably God
speaking to you,
comforting you,
reminding you.

Sometimes God speaks in a gentle whisper –
like a thought that runs across
the backyard of your brain.

When I make time to listen for Him,
I often get a thought that is
too wonderful to be my own.

Sometimes I get a picture of something
that is meaningful to me.

Other times,
God speaks with a gentle correction.

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Seeing God’s Best In Every Situation

 

I try to see God’s best in every situation,
but when I walked into
the lobby of our hotel … 

I just knew this stay
was going to be an adventure. 

Mr. 4-Ever often gets us great hotels at low prices,
but every once in a while
we miss out on the
Swanky Suites
and end up at
Bob’s Sleep Palace.

Such was the case this trip.

Every surface in sight was filthy.
The smell of antiseptic cleaner in the lobby
warned of impending germs…
Or bugs …
Or worse.

Our room smelled like an ashtray.
A bare wire lay exposed in one of the outlets.
The drains in the sink and tub weren’t just slow,
they became standing basins of yucky water.

The handle to the hot water faucet came off in Mr. 4-Ever’s hand!

The worst part?   

We’d booked through “Hotel Roulette”
(a non-refundable online service)
and were stuck.

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Do You Expect Good Things From God?

 

Do you expect good things from God
or do you settle for the mundane
when God offers the miraculous?

 Mr. 4-Ever and I were driving home 
from an event on a
hot and sunny day.
We’d been on the road for hours
and I just had to have
a break … and a chocolate malt.

A jumbo cup of
thick, chocolatey deliciousness.

I tried to talk myself out of it
but the hankering would not go away.

Finally, I asked Mr. 4-Ever
to be on the lookout for ice cream.

At the next exit,
we followed the signs to McDonald’s.

Mind you, McDonald’s will do,
but I had something a little different in mind.

I wanted hand scooped ice-cream
and lots of malt powder mixed
with whole milk – blended together till
it was a cold, smooth concoction
fresh from the whir of a malt maker.

Just as we saw the golden arches,
I spied an ice cream stand
on the other side of the road.

“Can we go there instead?”
I asked Mr. 4-Ever excitedly.

He was already in McDonald’s mode,
drive-through quick,
inexpensive and satisfactory.

“No, let’s just stick with McDonald’s,”
was his disappointing reply.

“Ok,” I drooped,
“I have to use the ladies room anyway.
I’ll go in and get the shake.”

At the counter,
I saw a big “OUT OF ORDER” sign
on the machine that oozes milk shakes.
I was practically giddy as I asked,
“Is your milk shake machine working?”

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