Friday, July 24, 2015

Just a Quick Word (With Cats!)

            Wow! I don't know where the last week went! I wanted to do another picture post sometime this week, but the week seems to have almost escaped from me.  I would also like to tell my fellow bloggers that I'm sorry for getting behind.  I truly do enjoy reading your posts, but this month has just been more hectic that I thought it would be, and I hope to catch up with you guys soon. 
            Just for fun, I thought I would introduce everyone to my cats.  They have made some appearances in post pictures before, and I thought they deserved a proper introduction!

Here they are:
They're pretty lazy
This is Kitty:

We wanted to come up with a great name for her when she was a kitten, so we waited for her personality to develop.  But the next thing you know, we just couldn't come up with anything more fitting than Kitty or just The Cat since she was our only indoor cat for a while.
This is Sawyer:
He's my lap baby and a great comforter after a long day at work.  He also likes to sleep in a lot of strange positions, so he ends up in more pictures than the other two.
This is Sophie:

She is the bratty, "little sister" of this clowder.  She sometimes ninja-strikes all, whether cat, dog, or human, who cross her path.
            That's all for now, I hope you have enjoyed meeting my cats.  Do you have cats?  Are you a cat person or dog person?  Or neither?

Friday, July 17, 2015

When You Leave the Mountaintop

            The youth from my church have been at church camp this week, and since the camp is in our town, I went to the evening services on Monday, Tuesday, and Thursday.  There has been some good preaching and a lot of decisions of salvation and rededication have been made.  I have helped as a camp counselor a couple times in the past and it is amazing to see God working on those kids throughout the week.  Although I haven’t been highly involved this year, I know that God is still working in their lives.  The catch is that they eventually have to go back home.  A very common problem that we have all probably faced at one point or another is having those mountaintop experiences, and then returning home and forgetting what happened or just falling back into the same habits from before.  Sometimes, it’s an emotional high, and the decisions made are not truly genuine.  Sometimes, a real commitment is made, but no effort to follow-up.  Either way, these kids need our prayers.  Ever since I was their age, I have watched teen after teen get saved or dedicate their lives to the ministry and they appear to be on fire for God.  Some of them do go on to serve God in missions or ministry, but more often than not it seems that many eventually fall away from the church.  This deeply saddens and troubles me.  When I see someone on fire for God, I want them to stay that way, especially since I have been working with these kids on Wednesday nights for the past eight years.  Watching them spiral downhill is hard because I committed some of my time to help them and I want to see them succeed in God’s kingdom.  I know there comes a time in everyone’s life when they must make their own decisions, but I hate it when those decisions lead down the wrong paths.  Sometimes, they will return to the church after a while, but there may be some scars they will have to live with for the rest of their lives.  Sorry, if this sounds a bit discouraging, but I have watched this happen so many times.  The youth from my church are going home today, so keep them in your prayers.  Not just them, but all the kids, counselors, pastors, ministry leaders, missionaries, or any other adult that makes a decision to follow Christ.  Pray that their decisions are genuine and that they commit to following through on the choices they made.  Because the struggle is real and Christians do need to commit themselves daily to following Christ, especially when they leave the mountain to go back into the valley.

“And he said to them all, If any man will come after me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross daily, and follow me.”  Luke 9:23 (KJV)

Thursday, July 9, 2015

The Prayer of the Impatient

            Out of pure curiosity, I signed up for the Blogging 101 email course that started on July 6.  I just wanted to know what kind of assignments it had, and Day 4 has actually come in handy.  Here is today’s assignment: “Publish a post you’d like your ideal audience member to read, and include a new-to-you element in it.”  So, I thought I would share my thoughts for this assignment.

            Who is my ideal audience member?  First of all, after having a birthday this past week, my mind has already been on my age and the future and biological clocks and all that.  Therefore, my ideal reader at this moment would be my future husband if he’s out there somewhere.  In all honesty, I do often wonder if he has ever stumbled across my blog and if he likes it.  I participated in a Bible study about six years ago that encouraged the participants to write letters to their future spouses and being the sentimental, romantic type, I have kept a small box with a few letters I’ve written since then.  I looked through that box and those letters are too personal for the public eye, but I did come across a short poem/psalm that I had put in there.  If I were to title it, I would probably call it “The Prayer of the Impatient” and it could work as the new element for the assignment.  I have used some poetry in the past, but it has been a while and most of my newer readers have probably not seen any.  Hope you enjoy:

Calm my restless spirit, Lord.
Still my anxious thoughts.
Help me not to keep watching for tomorrow,
but to live for You today.
Show me the way to Your peace and joy.
Let me be swallowed up in Your love and mercy.
Bring me to a place of comfort
and fill me with Your peace.
Help me not to dwell in the “some days” and “what ifs”
but to live right here, right now in Your good and perfect will.
Teach me to stop looking for where I’m going,
and just to focus on where I’m at.

Wednesday, July 1, 2015

IWSG: Time is Ticking Away

            Has it been a month already?  It seems like only yesterday that I put up my first post for the Insecure Writer’s Support Group!  IWSG was founded by Alex J. Cavanaugh for writers to share their insecurities and encourage one another.  Group postings occur on the first Wednesday of each month, click the link above if you’d like to join us.

             Right now, I’m insecure about time.  It seems as though I am constantly trying to perform an impossible balancing act of working full-time, church activities, spending time with family, spending time with friends, taking advantage of a business opportunity, writing, reading, hobbies, unwinding on Netflix, and most importantly (although often most ignored) Bible study and prayer.  Whew! Can you imagine if I had kids?  At the end of each day, I try so hard to be positive and think about what I accomplished, but more often than not I end up staring at my never-ending to do list and feel like I’ve failed.  I question my writing capability sometimes and wonder if I will ever take the time to put my ideas into sensible words and stories.  Prioritizing has never been my strong suit, so I end up trying to squeeze as much as I can into whatever time I have.  But I want to concentrate on the tasks that need my undivided attention and that is hard to do when there are so many things I’m trying to get done at once.  I wish I had some great go-to solution for this time conundrum, but all I can really do is take each day as it comes and make the most of it.  I recently read (source: Get Organized Wizard Blog) that it helps to just focus on a few items each day that can help you reach your long term goals instead of trying to mark off as many to-do list items as possible.  Of course, having the right attitude helps as well.  Do you feel like you’re constantly chasing time?  How do you manage your priorities?

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