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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Time Is Too Short Not To Follow Your Dream

Time Is Too Short
Not To
Follow Your Dreams

 

Last week,
one of the founding members of 

my home group died.

Perhaps you remember reading about him?

This man…
Mid-Fifties.
Picture of health.
Strong.
Hard working.
Lover of Jesus.
Lover of people.
Everybody’s best friend.

BAM!
Heart attack.
Gone.

Girls, I gotta tell you,
it rattled me.

I don’t presume to know what God is up to here.
That might be another blog.

What struck me was this.
John was about 5 years younger than me.

What if I had died 5 years ago?
What would have gone undone?

I wouldn’t have seen Jake graduate
from college as a Mechanical Engineer.
I would have missed Eli and Kym’s wedding.

Motivational speakers
tell you to visualize the future
as an incentive to propel yourself
into your destiny.

Isn’t it just as important
to review the past

to see what you
would have missed?

Five years ago,
I was a full-time mom and wife.
I volunteered to teach Bible Study at my little church.
I was working part-time at a dental office.

No regrets
about that season of my life.

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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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Three Word Sentences That Change Your Life

Three word sentences
can change your life.

If you heard …
Congratulations, you’re hired!
or You are pregnant!
or You’re cancer free!
it would dramatically change your life,
wouldn’t it?

We have the option to change lives
with our own
three word sentences.

Several years ago,
Mr. 4-Ever and I joined
a dinner party group.

At first,
we just got together to
eat and play games.
We talked about the weather
or the game
or our kid’s latest escapades.

It’s grown into a safe haven,
a place to share new recipes
as well as
life’s triumphs and challenges.

It’s so special,
we don’t post pictures on Facebook
or tweet about our time together.
It would feel like a breach of privacy.

This little group of five couples
has become holy space.

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Kicking Idols to the Curb

It’s an hour past
the first chirp of my alarm and
I’m still hiding under my covers.

I don’t want to face the day.

I don’t want to hear Jillian Michaels bark at me from the DVD
because I’m bloated from a late night Mexican food binge.

I dread the looming project deadline and
piles of laundry and
sink full of dirty dishes.

I don’t want to face today because
I have too much to manage and not enough …

Not enough
patience for a tough conference call later today.

Not enough
energy to attack my endless to do list.

Not enough
money for this month’s bills.

So I hide under my covers and keep hitting the snooze button
as I beg God to
help me,
fix me,
save me,
stretch my time and money …
to be my God today.

Do you do that?

Hide …
Hoping the the rapture is today,
or someone drops off a time warp machine,
or that a money tree pops up on the porch.

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Overcoming … with Gratitude

Recently, Eli, who is my youngest,
posted a photo on Facebook and
taught me a lesson about
overcoming (fill in the blank)
with gratitude.

 

In the photo, he was wearing a plaid flannel shirt.
A shirt that once belonged to his dad …
a mighty man who died 20 years ago.

Eli posted:
I came across (my dad’s) old shirt and had to try it on.
I was surprised to see that I still barely fit into it.
So many years have passed and
I still felt like a toddler trying on my dad’s clothes.
He was such a big man and part of me hoped
I would fill it out after all this time.

But then it dawned on me
that I was meant to be my own man
and make my own path.

As I put the shirt away to find again another day,
I thought about how lucky I was
to be in such a wonderful place in my life
with so many loving supportive people around me.

I miss you Dad and
I am so thankful to be from your bloodline
but I am so joyful that my life played out the way it has.

He closed with,
“I’ll see you on the other side some day.”

(Eli “helping” his dad, Jay, (Hot & Hunky) with a plumbing project. – 1996)

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 And just like that,
I was in a puddle.

Grief is like that.

It comes when it comes and
there is no predicting when it will
turn your life inside out
and upside down.

Grief can knock you down,
but it doesn’t have to knock you out.

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