eternal · Goals · Priorities

Two Questions To Shape the New Year

2019, Here We Come!!

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There are a ton of questions we could ask ourselves as we approach a new year.  Some of the old standard questions are still excellent ones, but I’ve been pondering just two in the last couple of weeks.  Ready?

  1. What do I wish I had done more of in 2018?
  2. What do I wish I had done less of in 2018?

I think those two simple questions will really encompass all those other goals, needs, and relationships we want to make better this coming year.  It covers the priorities and the people we love,  as well as the habits and idols we need to rid from our lives.

When I asked myself those two questions, here’s what pierced my heart ~

What do I wish I had done more of in 2018?

  • Prayer
  • Scripture memory
  • Reading of books
  • Writing of my own book
  • Exercise
  • Connection with family
  • Discipling

What do I wish I had done less of in 2018?

  • Worry – The prayer could have taken care of that!
  • Screen time – Phones are needed and a blessing, but some days it feels like an appendage.  This is hard because I blog and do videos for You Tube, but it’s something I really want to get a handle on this year!

Both lists have other bullets, but these are the crucial ones, ones I’m taking to the Lord in prayer as I begin a new year.  One prayer I repeat over and over is,

Lord, I want my life to count for You.

I believe if I do more of what’s right and less of what’s keeping me idle, my life can count for Christ.

Oh that I may say like Paul, For me to live is Christ… Philippians 1:21

So, how would you answer those two questions?  Perhaps they can guide you as you ponder how the Lord would want you to live this next year as He grants us the breath to do so.  James 4:15

Refresh yourself in this new year!

Denise Signature 150 px

 

Priorities · summertime

Time to Slow Down

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My favorite season is here – summertime!  I’m not especially a fan of the heat, but I love the long hours of daylight, being outside when it’s cool and/or shady, eating on our covered patio, working in the yard, growing tomatoes and herbs, and so many other things that include warm, sunny days!

I want to make the most of these summer months and enjoy them to the fullest.  I’ll be Continue reading “Time to Slow Down”

organization · Priorities · Refreshment · Time management

Planning Can Bring Rest

All those pretty planners that were sold in the month of December or January were so inviting.  There were stickers and binders as well as pretty pens to mark up the dates.  Did you purchase one?  Maybe you got one from Target or ordered a special Erin Condren version.  At any rate, how’s it going?  Is it still in use?  I think it’s easy to get started in those kinds of organizational tools and then let it slip off into the Ocean of Good Intentions.

Sometimes our feelings of being overwhelmed are due to over-scheduling ourselves.  Over-scheduling can come from lack of planning, and a lack of planning comes from getting a bit careless.  This is true of my own life.  I’ll tuck my planner in the cabinet, then start the week off and realize I’m going in circles, and not really sure what needs to be done that day/week.  The reason?  I didn’t write it down!  Why?  I was just too lazy to sit down and do it.

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If you feel overwhelmed and don’t have a planner, can I encourage you to try some sort of daily list?  It can be written in a simple notebook.  It doesn’t have to be anything fancy to get you organized.  Here’s my strategy:

  1. At the beginning of the week, I fill in all the appointments and daily routines I know I need to do.
  2. Each day I add the other things that I’d like to accomplish, such as blog posts, cleaning, service to others, etc.
  3. As I accomplish each task, I check it off.  This lets me realize at the end of the day, that even if some things were left undone, I did  get some things completed!

If other things come in and keep you from doing what you’d planned, accept it as the Lord’s intervention and go with it!  If you give each day to Him, your time is not your own and He will allow you to do what is necessary.

If you find you’re not getting things done and there was no “Divine Intervention,” make sure to look over your day and see where you’re wastitng time.  You might want to

  • Limit social media until after noon or after those tasks are completed.
  • Get up earlier, if possible.
  • Try to work on a time schedule – write out the time in the day when you think you should be on that next task.

Proverbs 28:19a He that tilleth his land shall have plenty of bread

Hard work pays off.  If we forget to “till the land” (prepare for a future time) we will feel overwhelmed with everything that is left undone.  A little tilling now will allow you to reap more than just bread!  You’ll reap the blessing of a rested heart.

Do you use a planner each day or do you need to start one?

Denise

 

Bread · Overwhelmed · Priorities · Uncategorized

Overwhelmed or Refreshed By Life?

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I’m just so overwhelmed!

Those words came from a wife, mom, employee, church member, daughter, daughter-in-law, who probably has lots more roles that she plays.  We’ve all been in the place where we feel like the pressures from every side are coming in on us.  So, how in the world DO we handle all those responsibilities?  They all need attention.  They’re all important, but we know we aren’t superwoman with super-powers enabling us to conquer the world in which we are engulfed.

What’s a woman to do? How do we get it all done?

I think we all have to re-evaluate often.  When we feel pressure about several things that need our attention, we have to stop and ask:

Is my life exemplifying a life that a is given over to the Lord to do as He wills each day?
Am I obeying His Word and priorities for my life?
Do my words and my actions match?

For instance, I love writing my blog, and my passion here is all about refreshment that begins with a relationship with Jesus Christ and then moves to family/home, then church and others.  If I follow the things I teach from God’s Word, I will keep blogging its right place.

This week we were able to make a quick trip to visit my family in Kentucky.  We celebrated Memorial Day on the lake with my sisters, their husbands and our parents.  It was a fabulous day.  At the end of the boating excursion and return to my parent’s home, we decided since it was late in the afternoon, we would wait and come home on Tuesday.  No blog post had been written for Tuesday, but I had a decision to make – visit with my family for those hours, or interrupt it with computer time.  The choice was simple. We had a great visit!

Here are some other practical examples that might happen in my life:

If it comes between…

  • Quiet time in God’s Word and rushing out the door…which will I choose? God is first.
  • Time at my church for services or time with visiting relatives?  God is first.
  • Time with friends at an extra outside activity or time I’d planned with my family?  Family is first.
  • Bible study with my small group or time to chill and watch a movie?  Others are first.
  • Time with my grandsons or time with my husband?  He is first.
  • Time to exercise or time to pray? God is first.
  • Time watching my friend’s children or watching my grandsons?  Family is first.

There are many times that I have regretted the poor decision to shift my priorities.  But I pray each day that the Lord will direct my steps and help me make the best choice, and He does when I lean in for His guidance.

One day last week I had an idea of what I would do that day and it got completely changed.  One event was when a friend stopped by.  She later sent a text apologizing for “keeping me,” but as I told her, when you give your day to the Lord, you take whatever He sends, and sometimes He sends the blessing of time with a friend when you didn’t expect it!  The Lord knew I needed that, even though I didn’t schedule it, He did! It refreshed me!

We need the Lord every single day for every moment of the day.  Rather than feeling overwhelmed, rest in God’s priorities for your life, and listen to His leading.  His plans are always better than what we could dream up, and when we lay our head on our pillow at night, we can say what Jesus said, “Lord, I have done the work you gave me to do.” His ways don’t overwhelm; they refresh.

What areas of your life do you need to re-evaluate according to God’s priorities for your life? Where do you feel most overwhelmed?

Don’t stress – Stay refreshed.

Denise