The Best Medication for Turbulent Times

I surveyed the dark red, single engine airplane we stood in front of as I listened to my new husband say, “It’s absolutely ridiculous to own a vehicle you don’t know how to operate!”  

The airplane that now had my name on the title. The turbulence in my tummy was growing. I gulped. Visions of me soaring through the air filled my head … followed immediately by flashes of me crashing in a blaze of flames.

It seemed reasonable to know how to operate the radio. It even made sense to learn how to land the plane in an emergency, but to actually become a licensed pilot freaked me out.

“I don’t know,” I said. “It looks complicated.”
“It’s not hard at all. I’ll teach you.”

You can already tell this will go badly, can’t you?

There is truth in the old adage that a husband should not attempt to teach his wife to drive. Driving lessons are a lot cheaper than a divorce, but this isn’t a blog about marriage.

“Okay,” I said, more out of a desire to be cooperative than adventurous. “Let’s do it.”

Learning to fly an airplane was horribly hard for me; all the technical, weather-related, and directional stuff vexed me. To top it off, my own flying made me sick. The joggling and bouncing in the little plane while doing the training maneuvers made my stomach churn.

Dramamine was a lifesaver for me. I swallowed pieces of little yellow pills for the first forty hours of my training before I successfully completed my testing to become a licensed pilot.

Can I get a whoop! whoop!?

I’m still plagued by motion sickness if the air is turbulent or if the waves are rough. If the swings are tall or the carnival rides turn me upside down. You can tell me it’s all in my head but I am still hurling into an airsick bag.

While Dramamine commands my upset stomach to calm down,
it does nothing to change my circumstances.

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Are You More Like Mary Or Martha?

If you are more like Martha than Mary, I have good news! My friend, Katie M. Reid has just written a book called, “Made Like Martha: Good News for the Woman Who Gets Things Done”(which includes a 5-week bible study for individuals and groups). It comes out July 12, but I wanted to give you a sneak peek.

The Secret to a Good Soul Cleaning
By: Katie M. Reid

Modern Marthas don’t usually blow things off. They are conscientious and aim to please. We get A’s for effort, not E’s. We work to excel. We strive for perfection. We run as to win the prize. Even if we don’t get gold stars or gold medals, it isn’t for a lack of trying to offer our best.

If someone told me that all my efforts were in vain, I think I might cry (or get ticked, or be tempted to give up…depending on my mood or time of the month). Daily, my brain works overtime, trying to solve problems, tackle schedules, and successfully manage all that is on my plate.

The Army slogan, “Be all that you can be,” was a favorite of mine, and I lived it. Until, I tried so hard to be all and do all that I set myself up for failure. I kept trying to be an acceptable sacrifice. The problem was, I was trying to purify and holy-ify myself to be pleasing in God’s sight and the eyes of most everyone else too.

The duties of being a good Christian started to become drudgery as I tried to perform flawlessly.

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I’m A Hottie, Are You?

Girl, I’m a hottie, especially at night. 

It’s not that I used to be a Playboy Bunny that makes me a hottie. 
It’s not cuz I have a voluptuous figure. 
What makes me a hottie is my hormones!

If you’re a hormonal hottie, too, listen up.
You need flannel sheets in summer. 

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Can Too Much Togetherness Lead To Turmoil?

Is there such a thing as too much togetherness?

Dave and I just got back from a conference in Toronto, Canada. We were TOGETHER for six days. Joined at the hip together!
In the car.
In the hotel room.

At the conference.
Eating.
Sleeping.

Driving.
Learning.
Ministering … together! 

It was great, but I have to admit, I was happy to be home and get back into my routines. To have a little “me” time. You know what I mean, don’t you?

This morning (first day home) while I was having my quiet time, Dave came in and said, “Oh, good morning! Let me get my coffee and sit right next to you. We haven’t spent any down time together for a while.” 

Honestly, at first I thought, “Arrgh, I do not have time for a meandering conversation or meaningful togetherness right now! I have to unpack, do laundry, take a friend in for a colonoscopy, pick up something for dinner, write my Journey to Trust girls to see how they are doing with their studies, finish my blog and make a dessert for tomorrow night! I do not have any more time for you!” 

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Old Memories and New Legacies

What do you do with old memories? 
Turn them into new legacies!

I have outlived my mom by 27 days.
I don’t mean my mom died 27 days ago.
I mean she died when she was 61 years, 5 months and 16 days old.
I have eclipsed her life span.

In thinking about her,
remembering all the accomplishments she achieved
and all the people she served so well in her tenure as an educator,
one of the questions rattling around my brain is
how will I be remembered?

I know, I know,
61 is hardly considered old anymore.

However, I have more years BEHIND me than AHEAD of me.
Now more than ever, I want to make them count.

Time is whizzing by.

It seems like just yesterday that I was chasing children,
frantically trying to get places on time.
I was consumed with feeding, watering, and caring for other people.

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Follow God On Your Divine Journey

Are you so busy that the idea of following God a divine journey sounds impossible?

I’m always in a hurry! I rush from meetings to projects, then to the laundry room to rescue Mr. 4-Ever’s shirts before I have to add ironing to my long to do list.

At the grocery store, I silently hum You got to move it, move it to myself as I weave around browsers or wait impatiently at the cash register.

In staff meetings, I take copious notes on one page and write a list of things I need to do when I get home on the next page.

I’ve never been a woman who enjoyed the journey. I’m more of a destination kind of girl.

But, lately I’ve been thinking that I’m missing some of the magical moments God has planned for me along the way because I’m too rushed to see them, much less enjoy them.

What if I could let myself off the hook about having to do everything quickly or that I have to do everything myself or that everything I do has to be done perfectly or it’s a complete failure?

How can I think of life as a DIVINE JOURNEY? A journey that will take twists and turns, but will make my journey interesting and create the margin in my life to feel alive and free.

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Sin Is Delicious … and Addictive

Sin is delicious. I wish it weren’t so, but it is.

I work with so many women who get caught up in things they never dreamed would hook them.

Prescription drugs. 
Alcohol.
Lies and deceptions. 

Overspending and debt.
Co-dependancy.
Pornography.
Abusive relationships. 

When I met with *Carolyn, she couldn’t even look up at me, but finally, she took a deep breath and started.

“I’m having an affair with a married man. We met at work and over the course of conversation and cocktails and compliments, I found myself taken in by him. At first, it was just so nice to be noticed. Not just for the way I look but for my brain and my ideas. He listened to my dreams and my problems. He helped me get promoted.

Now here I am. Three years into a relationship with a married man who will never divorce his wife. Hiding the truth from my family and friends, swallowing the pain and guilt, pretending everything is great. I’ve tried to break it off, but I keep going back.”

 

I stared at her. Why would a beautiful, educated woman get into this mess?
Because sin is delicious.

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Dance on the Stage God Has Given You

Do you know what stage you’re supposed to be on?
Do you know how to get clarity? 

Mr. 4-Ever and I, along with hundreds of others, sat in a hot, crowded auditorium for hours to watch a parade of small girls in dressed up tutus and tights wobble and hop on the stage in front of us. 

Every mother and grandma and friend of the family attending knew that the performances of the budding ballerina they came to see was likely to be awkward and poorly-executed, but we each, to a woman, swelled with pride when the little girl we came to see appeared on the stage.

In every performance, the tiny dancers took turns being out of sync, but as a group, they covered each other’s weakness, one remembering one part and another remembering another part so as a whole, they completed the number.

Occasionally, in moments of complete bewilderment, a ballerina wrangler – a preteen ballerina in matching leotard and tights – would appear from the wings to prompt and shoo her mini versions through their next step.

The sweet ballerina we came to watch, was on the stage for not quite two minutes. She was in lipstick and rouge for the first time.  She bravely swayed and pirouetted nearly on cue. She curtsied to thundering applause and cheers.

After the recital, carried her flowers in her arms as if they were her infant, careful not to bump the blossoms or break the stems. She beamed under the praise and adoration of the few of us who were there just for her.

There are no dress rehearsals for life.

That recital was packed with life lessons for all of us!

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Do You Believe There Is Greatness In You?

When God made you, he created a masterpiece.

There is greatness in you. 
I know this because there is greatness in each of us.
We are all chock full of God given gifts and talents.
The Bible says we are wonderfully made.
It even calls you a masterpiece!

I had a hard time believing it about myself so I’m guessing you might, too.

That’s why I made this 90 second video.
I want you to see for yourself what God says to you about you!
Click on the image below.

Friend, God put all kinds of great things in you. 
You can believe it!

God Almighty, I choose to believe your word about me. Help me to see the good and the great in me. I want to use my gifts to glorify you and encourage others. In Jesus name, Amen. 

Ringing in the New Year with a Dance Party!

There is nothing like a dance party ring in the New Year!
 
When you are feeling frumpy, discouraged or just old,
you need a dance party!

 
An event planner I worked with last year informed me
that I should plan to join the dance party they host as part of their retreat every year.
“A dance party?” I asked her.
“Oh yes, it’s a big part of every retreat.
The women love it!” she said cheerfully.
“To go with the Royalty theme this year,
we’ll have a ball.
Bring something with sparkles on it!”
 
The more I thought about it,
the more it sounded like fun …
if I didn’t have a heart attack!
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