Suzanne Eller Live-Free Thursday, Uncategorized

Show Me What Is Important Today

You can't turn back the clock, but you can wind it up again. Bonnie Pruden-2.png

The closets are overflowing with clothes that need to be donated.  Okay, I’ve really been working on it this summer while school was out but if you know me, my summer was busy, and now the phone is ringing again for subs.  Books I want to read, and was going to read this summer are still waiting (but thankfully our studies are starting back up and right now I am reading that book – She’s Still There.  The kitchen counter is no longer full of mail except for three paid bills waiting to be dropped off at the post office, and my laundry room thankfully is not overflowing with clothes.  We bought a new washer and dryer and I have been enjoying washing.  The ironing was done last week, and you know when the washing is caught up there is more ironing to do, and there are now five shirts in there I need to press.  Yep I still iron.  I know some of you don’t know what an iron is.

I know we are all busy – life is just busy and for all of us it is a different set of circumstances.  Life is unpredictable and sometimes just hard especially if you are dealing with a health issue, elderly parents, or a special-needs child and look at all those precious lives in my precious state of Texas and what they are dealing with now with Hurricane Harvey.  My heart is breaking for them, and some of them are friends and family.  Now that school has started you are busy with sports and school stuff, and I am busy subbing so I can make a difference in my community.

Our on-line Bible studies sort of took off for the summer.  We had one, but did not have our Facebook Groups so it was less busy, but being a Coach for this study starting next week did require a little time.  We will begin a study on Tuesday by Chrystal Evans Hurst called She’s Still There.  Would love for you to join us.  It’s not too late to sign up here, and all you need is a book.   The study takes place here.  You can find out more about that here on Suzie’s blog today – great video with Chrystal.

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Do you take your family for granted?  I do!  I am really good with my husband, kids and our mother-in-law,  but we stay so busy we leave family out for the most part except for special occasions (Christmas, Thanksgiving, graduations, Easter, Birthdays, etc.).   I hardly ever make the time to see my two sisters although we did meet this summer for lunch, and my middle sister came to visit one day with gifts for my new grand babies.  We never know what tomorrow holds.  I received news last night that one of my aunt’s died.  I was able to go visit her last week at the hospital and she seemed to know me.  It was so hard to get away that day.  I keep our grandchildren several days a week and now with school I am subbing a few days and I juggled to find the drive to Dallas to go visit.  So very glad I did now.

Do you  crave organization/cleanliness in your house?  I find I do – it is just hard with so many responsibilities.  To drop in on me most days you would not think I crave cleanliness.  I want simplicity and organization and I am finding I am doing a better job of throwing out and donating.  I just need some time to really keep purging!!  I donated several bags of clothes and shoes this summer and I have more stacks already in one of the bedrooms just waiting for me.

When it comes to messes or  to make dinner for a friend who just had a baby and leave the dishes on the counter, I am at a stage where the friend comes first.  Family comes first.  The dishes will stay, but life goes by, we lose loved ones and we can never get a single day with them back.  Have you lost a loved one or loved ones?  Do you have regrets?

Have you rushed through your days just looking forward for them to end?  Have you longed for some quiet time just wishing your children would play so you can get the house clean, get dinner cooked, or perhaps sit with Jesus? Make ALL your moments matter-2.png

STOP!  I’ve learned to stop.  I get in the floor with those grandchildren.  We roll cars around the kitchen floor, we work puzzles and read books.  Our older one is already four and I want to make moments with him.  We go to the park, sometimes a movie, and sometimes to Wal-Mart to pick out a toy or one of his favorite places, Chick-Fil-A for lunch.    I love sitting and rocking our new grand babies.  We have three you know.  Yes, three – a little granddaughter and twin grandsons born a week apart in March.  I savor rocking moments that won’t last long and sit there savoring memories with my own children.  ARE YOU READY TO ROCK TODAY?  I am – the granddaughter is on the way.

Friends I want to tell you those precious moments go by quickly.  Those nights you did not savor with a new born when you were being awakened to feed.  Those moments they wanted to sit in your lap and you were too busy to stop and hold them, hug them, read to them.  Those moments the adult children invited you to do something and you could not find the time.  Those times you don’t want to sit for a moment and talk on  the phone  to a loved one because you are busy.  Those visits to visit your grandparents or parents when they are lonely.  Those moments you can never get back – only memories – are you making them moments to savor, precious moments to remember?

Do things with your adult children.  Go shopping with your daughter or daughter-in-law or a quick lunch.  This weekend we are going to our lease in the country with our son and daughter–in-love, the twin babies and the four year old.  We are inviting some precious friends for lunch out at the cabin.  We just got back from a wonderful vacation in Colorado with our son, his wife and her family.  We had so much fun and quality time with all of them.

Be careful that someday you don’t regret that you were more worried about the laundry then  sitting  to read a story or to get off the computer to be with your children.  And speaking of computers, how many times do I go out to eat and see a couple both texting, or a young lady with what appears to be her grandmother ignoring her and texting.  Even the little ones are now sitting on their iPads.  Can we not put our phones and ipads down for a short meal to love on our loved ones?  It breaks my heart when I see this.  What matters today may be gone tomorrow.

The truth of the matter is that someday you will have quiet moments and peace and time to yourself.  You will be remembering the moments with children, family and friends who have either grown up, moved out, or are no longer with you.  Are you making the moments – both bad and good – matter???  Stop and play with the kids.  Go meet a friend for lunch with your phone turned off.  Send an email or text to brighten someone’s day, but even better call them and spend some time chatting rather than that quick text.

We had several get togethers with a lot of people at our house this summer.   Do you know I never heard anyone say you need to clean, look at those weeds in that one flower bed, you are not the best of decorators (sigh)?  What I heard was that peanut butter cup ice cream was amazing, loved the hot dogs and hamburgers, love your pool, your house is beautiful and thanks.

So to friends and family I want you to know that a mess at my house means that I am busy with what really matters and that is savoring the moments with you, finding some “me time” for me and being like Mary and sitting at Jesus’ feet.

Joining Suzie Eller today.  Come link-up with us.

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Encouragement, Faith, Kate Matoung Five-Minute Friday, Uncategorized

Am I Collecting People Or Things

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Am I Collecting People or Things?  As I ponder that question over the years I think you would agree we all spend so much time collecting all sorts of “stuff”.  For me it’s been anything from the latest laptops, phones and iPads, gadgets, clothes, jewelry, shoes, purses and so much more.  WHY?

Now don’t get me wrong.  We can be frugal around here, and I shop sales.  I am shopping now for a new washer and dryer.  My old Maytags are still going and I bought them when our son was a baby over 37 years ago.  I’m looking at Speed Queens because they say they are built to last 25 years and if that is true they will out last me.  I can be thrifty, but I also don’t mind spending money on things that last.

I admit I have gotten much better the older I get.  The older I get, the more I realize how important people are – not my things.    I can go shopping and come home with nothing.  I do it often because the house is full of too much “stuff” I don’t need, and truly I need to purge and purge.  I have spent the summer trying to clean out closets, and still trying to find the time to work on them.  So far I’ve donated a trash bag of shoes and a trash bag of clothes, and I took some nice work outfits to the resale shop.  There is a box upstairs collecting all kinds of things for donating.  There is still so much to purge – like 3 closets of clothes, 2 closets of coats, and eight chests of drawers of mostly my stuff.  I suppose us women fill up the house, and our men fill up the garages, their sheds and barns.

When we lost my Mom a few years back, I learned what happens to all the stuff:

  • You take a lot of it home so you have more stuff.
  • You have several garage/estate sales, and in the process you bring in some more items that remind you of Mom and Dad.
  • You give away and give away and give away to friends and neighbors and organizations.
  • You store it for more sales that never happen,  and then you give more away.
  • You throw away and throw away and shred and shred.
  • You wear yourself out going through all the “stuff”.

I also learned when we lost Mom and Dad, and many other loved ones it is not the things, but the memories of all the times we spent together making memories, and all the little things that I brought home that bring back memories – the pictures and the little teacups and a few dishes, an old radio, and old wall phone, those precious Christmas ornaments Mom gave us each year – little things that remind me of them.  Memories, pictures, moments, smiles are what matter.

I also learned that our kids are not going to care about most of this stuff that I cling to so I have been tossing and throwing so they don’t have to.  While I’m cleaning I have those thoughts of what mess am I leaving them.

Collecting People – Not Things.   What are we doing that will last a lifetime because those cars, houses and gadgets won’t?  Or how about that closet of clothes and shoes and purses.  Cars get old, gadgets crash, and homes have to be remodeled over and over (unless you are buying new ones all the time), nice dishes are never used, and those clothes and shoes go out of style.  At what cost have we or are we,  harming our families because those things can become more important than them?

Collecting people – not things.  Your husband has his eyes on a ball game, a fishing show or even that awful RFD channel.  Does it drive you crazy or do you take the time to enjoy it with him?  Sometimes I try and usually give up unless I am sitting here blogging (like now), tracing my family tree on Ancestry or working on my Bible studies and doing my own thing,   BUT at least I am sitting here next to him and not in another room watching something else.  People more than things.  When he turns on a movie or program I like, I love laying my head in his lap and enjoying the movie or sometimes I fall asleep.  Naps are a great way to get a little snooze in, but an even better way to get a lot of cuddling in.

Does your spouse have to compete with your cell phone, your computer, or your television when you go out to eat?  Honestly, I try not to answer the cell when we are at a meal or doing something together unless we are expecting an important phone call.  

Collecting people – not things.   I substitute teach and see so many students and parents placing emphasis on things – tennis shoes, shirts, pants, purses, backpacks, cell phones.  I’ve even listened to kids make fun of another’s  tennis shoes when I am subbing in gym class. It’s sad judging someone by their shoes or clothes.   Is that how they are being taught at home, rather than judging one by his/her personality or heart?  I still remember a girl walking up to me in school when I had a new, cute dress on, and she commented it was out of season.  It was September and it was beautiful green colors (not summery at all)  so not sure why, but I’ve never forgotten it or the rudeness of it.  For the rest of the day I was miserable in my new dress.

Oh how must our Lord cry out “people are more important than things.” You might hear me talking back  in a nice way to someone at school putting another child down because of their clothes.  Oh how I wish I could talk to them about Jesus like my teachers were allowed to do.  How different would this world be if we could love like Jesus and share His love!  I just want to cry sometimes because a child is hurting and I want to say, “Jesus loves you and died for you.”   I can’t but our students can.  Oh to share the love of Jesus and not the love of things breaks my heart most days when I’m at school.

You might also hear me giving a lesson on phones.  Last year I asked to borrow a charger.  Not one single student in any of my classes that day had a charger for my “older” phone.  They made fun of my phone because they always have the latest new iPhone.  Mine was an old iPhone 4 as they called it.  I do now have the newest phone out, but I don’t go out and buy to have the newest.  When I buy it’s because I can’t download an app anymore or for me the last one was because my Bible study app had stopped working, and we were about to have new grand babies and I was wanting a new phone for me and my hubby to take better pictures.  By the time school starts another phone will be on its way in and mine will be old again, but it will be here as long as it works and I can read my First 5 devotions each day.

Collecting people – not things.   People put down those cell phones when you are out with family.     I mean really people, why can’t we put them down for thirty minutes.  Aren’t people more important than things?  Isn’t that smile from a grandchild or a comment from your family more important than that text pinging on your phone?  Can we just feast on real life with our friends and family.  I am thankful our family does ignore their phones.  My husband even commented on Christmas Day about all of my family and how they were involved with the games we were playing and not sitting there texting but enjoying family.

Collecting people – not things.  One last thing, but probably the most important.  Don’t look at a cell phone and drive.  How can we even think of it with someone else like children in the car, or other cars around you.  Are you guilty?  Please don’t do it.  If you have to look pull over.  I do talk on the phone in the car, but my car has a phone so both hands are on the wheel and eyes on the road.  If the cell phone pings or I need to dial a number it can wait until I stop or pull over.  Don’t go through the tragedy of losing a loved one because of a second on a phone, or causing so much pain to another family by taking their loved ones.  Every single time we are on the highway we see people with a phone reading or texting.  You can always tell when you are about to pull up beside someone doing it. It’s scary at 65-75 mph seeing someone weaving.  You always know you will see a cell phone if you have the courage to go around.

How can we collect people and moments – not things?

  • Have lunch/coffee with friends, neighbors or family.  Turn your phones off.
  • Get in the floor and play with your kids or grandkids – blocks, puzzles, cars, etc..  Turn off the television unless you are watching a movie together.
  • Go for a walk or run with someone.  Hold hands with your hubby.
  • Go for a drive and visit while you do.
  • Visit a neighbor.  Take them some cookies or cake.  I especially like to do this for a recent widower and his daughter.  Find a widow or widower in your neighborhood or church.
  • Sit down and read a book to your kids or grandkids.
  • Call someone and really talk instead of texting.
  • Snuggle up and watch a movie with your loved one.
  • Have a date night and ban the phone.
  • Cook a romantic dinner and sit down and really talk.
  • Call your husband/wife at work and ask how their day is going.  Focus on them and stop fussing about your day.
  • Meet your loved ones at the door and welcome your spouse with a kiss as they walk in the door.  Kiss them as they leave in the morning.
  • Pray together as a family.  Sit down and ask for requests and pray.
  • Visit a nursing home and take some small jars of flowers and visit some folks who don’t have family.  Ask the nursing home.  They will share with you who you can visit.
  • Take a meal to someone who is shut-in.
  • Offer to keep some children so a couple can have a date-night.  Many young adults in your neighborhood or church don’t have family around to help.

Let’s stop basing our happiness on things and base them on others.

“Love people, not things; use things, not people.”  Spencer W. Kimball

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BEEN THERE, DONE THAT, LOVED IT!

Blog--Been there, doe thatI have been through six studies now with Melissa Taylor and Proverbs 31 Ministries.  I believe my favorite moment was when I became a group leader during the study of Unglued and I was waiting on my first group of ladies to arrive.  It was exciting and scary and to this day I think that is my favorite moment of the study – waiting to see who is new and waiting to see all my OBS sisters returning and knowing how every one of us is going to GROW through this new study in this place where God has joined us together.

It is in the returning that we grow.  It is in the returning that we show our faithfulness to God.  It is in the returning that we fall more in love with Him.  Through every study I have grown and grown and grown.   I find myself each day as I open my study book and my Bible that I fall more in love with my Jesus and that I want to be more like Him.

So yes my favorite moment is today.  My favorite moment is going to be any minute, any hour but sometime today.  I cannot wait to see that first woman pop in and introduce herself to each one and then on Sunday when the study begins.

FINALLY, it’s been only a few weeks, but it seems like years since our group was together.  Tonight it will happen and I am so excited just almost as much as Christmas.  My husband shares that excitement with me as I start saying I have a peep and another and then another.  It’s AWESOME, it’s a wonderful, wonderful moment.  I’ve been there, done that, and loved it over and over now for six studies.

Would love to have you join us here.  http://proverbs31.org/online-bible-studies/current-study/

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Blessings and Moments – Day 8 – A Grandson

Two days a week I am blessed to get to go to help my daughter-in-law with my new grandson.  This is that precious little boy.  colt 7 weeksHe will be two months old this weekend.  You see her mom and I are going over because she works from home and because Colt requires a little more attention because he was born with a serious skin disease with no skin on his feet and sores on his hands and in his mouth.  He requires a special bottle to feed and his feet have to be wrapped every day and that takes two people.That  disease is EB but Colt is doing so much better than most EB babies.  God has answered so many prayers the last eight weeks.

I love these days with this precious baby and his mom and just spending time, taking walks in this nice Fall weather and just being together.

Being with a grandchild brings back so many memories and so many reminders of how precious life is and how fast it goes.  If only we could just realize that when we were younger and busy – too busy sometimes to just relax and rock a bit more, hug a bit more, and savor each precious moment – not knowing it is all over in a flash.

We are reminded with a grandchild  what it was like with a newborn, but these times are so different.  We are more relaxed and slowed down and we remember how fast the time went, we remember the moments we missed, We remember – we remember the moments – we remember the sweetness – we REMEMBER!  So precious!

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Blessings and Moments – Day 7

Today as I wrote a little about organization and looked at my laundry basket running over, I thought about my “cup runneth over”.  You know that verse in Psalm 23:5.  I just feel so blessed each day of all that God has given me.  There are so many blessings and so many moments that if He took me home today, my life would be complete although I would like to see my grandson who was born in August this year grow up a bit.  What a joy he is!

I went upstairs to take a picture of one of Mom’s cups.  She gave me all her little tea cups many years ago.  I brought them home and thought really I already have too many collections.  But these little cups bring me joy each time I go upstairs and see them.

Three years ago this Christmas I packed up all the little teacups and took them up to the nursing home to surprise Mom after Christmas lunch.  Our family took lunch to her because she was not physically able to get out.  What precious memories now thinking about her surprise and how overwhelmed she was!  How much fun it was decorating as I challenged my sisters to each decorate some tables.  And then I forgot to take pictures of all the beautiful tables.Mom's teacups

 

Join us for Gratituesday at Heavenly Homemakers!

Day 1:  https://mixwilliams.wordpress.com/2013/10/01/31-days-of-blessings-and-moments/

Day 2:  https://mixwilliams.wordpress.com/2013/10/02/day-2-of-31-blessings-and-moments/

Day 3:  https://mixwilliams.wordpress.com/2013/10/03/day-3-of-31-blessings-and-moments/

Day 4:  https://mixwilliams.wordpress.com/2013/10/04/day-4-blessings-and-moments/

Day 5:  https://mixwilliams.wordpress.com/2013/10/05/day-5-blessings-and-moments/

Day 6:  https://mixwilliams.wordpress.com/2013/10/06/blessings-and-moments-day-6

Day 7:  https://mixwilliams.wordpress.com/2013/10/07/blessings-and-moments-day-7/