Thursday, August 28, 2008

A GENTLE REMINDER ABOUT JOY...Take A Minute, Breathe, and Watch!


I love to start my day in ways that refresh my body, heart, spirit, and soul

Here's how I started my day today:) Enjoy!

God Bless! Love, Linda

http://simpletruths.tv/movies.php?movie=FJOY

Wednesday, August 27, 2008

THOUGHTS ABOUT GOD-GIVEN GIFTS...and Nelson Mandela




When I look around at the exceptional people in my life...I am in awe of their gifts. I believe those gifts are God-given and those folks are developing and using their talents to the max!

I love Nelson Mandela's quote that says:

Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate. Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure. It is our light, not our darkness, that most frightens us. We ask ourselves "Who am I to be brilliant, gorgeous, talented, and fabulous?" Actually, who are you not to be? You are a child of God; your playing small doesn't serve the world.

That last line leaves a lump in my throat and chills down my spine ..."You are a child of God; your playing small does not serve the world."

I hear in those words the echo of my father's voice..."You can be anything you want to be...you just have to WORK at it!"

I am so aware that everyone has God-given gifts and that no one has ALL the gifts. No one is "all that!" I am also aware that cherishing the gifts God gave me, and using them to make the world a better place and make my own little light shine, is NOT the same as a "look at me...aren't I such hot stuff"attitude.

Some of the most talented people I know do not personally boast about the gifts God gave them, but they use them and celebrate them! Big difference!

They also know where those gifts came from and point to Him as the author and giver of the gifts!

My dear hubby, Bert, is one of those people! Not only is he a gifted therapist, but he is a gifted artist. He helped to develop the sport of windsurfing and named the sport as well. But you would never know about these things unless you asked. Ask him and he will light up and tell you about his JOY in serving others by helping them as a counselor. He'll show you his latest garden project and his enthusiasm will suck you into loving every plant he has planted. He reads constantly, collects quotes to share with clients, adores his church, family, being a "Boppa, me:), and he loves God!

But his focus in life is more about others and his celebration of them than it is about pointing out his own gifts! I love that about him. He uses his gifts, celebrates them, and has self-confidence, but at the same time Bert is humble.

Yet being humble is NOT the same as being invisible or underplaying who God made Bert to be...it is NOT "playing small."

Bert sees these God-given gifts as treasures God entrusted to him and it is his privilege and responsibility to use them!

I have been reading the book "Play on Your Strengths" and reflecting on the strengths God gave me. How can I use those strengths to make the world a better place and how can I develop them for God's glory, not my own? I adore my life and the people in it! I am grateful for God's love, grace, and forgiveness. It is time to step up and be ALL that God means me to be!

I want to build on my God-given gifts and let my light shine (and reflect on Him)! I want to thank God for making me "me" and celebrate the God-given gifts He has given me. I want to treasure those gifts every day and not "play small"...to quote Nelson Mandela. That truly does not serve the world.

So this morning I'm making a list of the gifts God has given me, and I am excited to see how He helps me to use them for His glory!

God Bless! Love Linda

Friday, August 15, 2008

A MOMENT OF CELEBRATION: I've Lost 50 Pounds!




I remember at this time last year how I was feeling! I loved my life, but I didn't love how my body felt or looked.

There were two voices in my head. One said, "Look, you are 60...it doesn't matter any more."

The other voice, the one that tells me the truth, said,

"Put your big girl panties on and get over it!!! It's time to do some hard work!!"

Thankfully I listened to the second voice. At the end of last August I joined Weight Watchers.

This past year has really been a journey and a return to health for me. I began exercising regularly, eating more carefully, and drinking lots and lots of water. I began to change my thinking as well. I have prayed constantly for God's strength, not just my own.

In truth I've been through a gigantic LIFESTYLE CHANGE...one that was long overdue.

My first goal was to lose 5 lbs, then ten lbs, then twenty lbs. And at the time each of those seemed almost impossible.

However, and I truly believe this:

There are NO shortcuts to any place worth going!

The bottom line is that at this point I have lost 50 lbs! And I celebrate that victory...almost a pound a week, right in line with Weight Watcher standards.

However, I imagined somehow that if I ever lost THAT much weight..that the battle would be over. And it isn't. I have more weight to lose, more exercising to do, more water to drink, and more prayers to pray...and I will for a lifetime!

However I do want to pause, if only for a minute, and celebrate what I once thought might be impossible. I am a person who is all about possibilities and self empowerment, but we all have places where we struggle... and this is mine.

Sometimes I wonder how far I have actually come, do I really look any different?

And then I give myself a reality check. I look back at some old photos taken in the past few years or try on some of my old clothes that swim on me now...and I smile and think...yup, you are doing it!!

This September I have a new plan for "Operation Life-Renewal!" December 16th Bert and I are headed to Hawaii for an early 25th wedding anniversary celebration. When I put on a swim suit over there...all the NEW work will be worth it! Great goal!

Well it's 6:15 am in Spokane, still cool, and time for my walk!
Hope you are having a great summer!
God Bless!
Love and hugs! Linda

A Reminder of What Matters...

                   "We are all just walking                       each other home."                                             ...