Monday, January 31, 2011

Needing People

We can find the balance between needing people too much and not letting ourselves need anyone at all.

Many of us have unmet dependency needs lingering from the past. While we want others to fulfill our desire to be loved unconditionally, we may have chosen people who cannot, or will not, be there for us. Some of us are so needy from not being loved that we drive people away by needing them too much.
Some of us go to the other extreme. We may have become used to people not being there for us, so we push them away. We fight off our feelings of neediness by becoming overly independent, not allowing ourselves to need anyone. Some of us won’t let people be there for us.
Either way, we are living out unfinished business. We deserve better. When we change, our circumstances will change.
If we are too needy, we respond to that by accepting the needy part of us. We let ourselves heal from the pain of past needs going unmet. We stop telling ourselves we’re un­lovable because we haven’t been loved the way we wanted and needed.
If we have shut off the part of us that needs people, we become willing to open up, be vulnerable, and let ourselves be loved. We let ourselves have needs.
We will get the love we need and desire when we begin to believe were lovable, and when we allow that to happen.

Sunday, January 30, 2011

One day, a friend called me on the phone. He was going through a difficult time and wondering if and when things would ever turn around and improve. I knew he was in a lot of pain; I didn't know then that he was considering suicide.

"If you could give a person only one thing to help them," he said, "what would it be?"
I thought carefully about his question; then I replied, "It's not one thing. It's two: gratitude and letting go." Gratitude for everything, not just the things we consider good or a blessing. And letting go of everything we can't change.
A few years have passed since that day my friend called me on the phone. His life has turned around. His financial problems have sorted themselves out. His career has shifted. The two very large problems he was facing at that time have both sorted themselves out. The actual process of working through these problems became an important part of redirecting the course of his life.
Someone once asked the artist Georgia O'Keefe why her paintings magnified the size of small objects--like the petals on a flower--making them appear larger than life, and reduced the size of large objects--like mountains--making them smaller than life.
"Everyone sees the big things," she said. "But these smaller things are so beautiful and people might not notice them if I didn't emphasize them."
That's the way it is with gratitude and letting go. It's easy to see the problems in our lives. They're like mountains. But sometimes we overlook the smaller things; we don't notice how truly beautiful they are.
Identify problems. Feel feelings.
But if you're going to make anything bigger than life, let it be the power and simplicity of these two tools: gratitude and letting go.

Saturday, January 29, 2011


Be thankful that you don’t already have everything you desire,
If you did, what would there be to look forward to?

Be thankful when you don’t know something
For it gives you the opportunity to learn.

Be thankful for the difficult times.
During those times you grow.

Be thankful for your limitations
Because they give you opportunities for improvement.

Be thankful for each new challenge
Because it will build your strength and character.

Be thankful for your mistakes
They will teach you valuable lessons.

Be thankful when you’re tired and weary
Because it means you’ve made a difference.

It is easy to be thankful for the good things.
A life of rich fulfillment comes to those who are
also thankful for the setbacks.

GRATITUDE can turn a negative into a positive.
Find a way to be thankful for your troubles
and they can become your blessings.

Author Unknown

Thursday, January 27, 2011


The Wemmicks were small wooden people. Each of the wooden people was carved by a woodworker named Eli. His workshop sat on a hill overlooking their village. Every Wemmick was different. Some had big noses, others had large eyes. Some were tall and others were short. Some wore hats, others wore coats. But all were made by the same carver and all lived in the village. And all day, every day, the Wemmicks did the same thing: They gave each other stickers. Each Wemmick had a box of golden star stickers and a box of gray dot stickers. Up and down the streets all over the city, people could be seen sticking stars or dots on one another.

The pretty ones, those with smooth wood and fine paint, always got stars. But if the wood was rough or the paint chipped, the Wemmicks gave dots. The talented ones got stars, too. Some could lift big sticks high above their heads or jump over tall boxes. Still others knew big words or could sing very pretty songs. Everyone gave them stars.
Some Wemmicks had stars all over them! Every time they got a star it made them feel so good that they did something else and got another star. Others, though, could do little. They got dots.
Punchinello was one of these. He tried to jump high like the others, but he always fell. And when he fell, the others would gather around and give him dots.
Sometimes when he fell, it would scar his wood, so the people would give him more dots. He would try to explain why he fell and say something silly, and the Wemmicks would give him more dots. After a while he had so many dots that he didn't want to go outside. He was afraid he would do something dumb such as forget his hat or step in the water, and then people would give him another dot. In fact, he had so many gray dots that some people would come up and give him one without reason. "He deserves lots of dots," the wooden people would agree with one another. "He's not a good wooden person."
After a while Punchinello believed them. "I'm not a good Wemmick," he would say. The few times he went outside, he hung around other Wemmicks who had a lot of dots. He felt better around them.
One day he met a Wemmick who was unlike any he'd ever met. She had no dots or stars. She was just wooden. Her name was Lucia. It wasn't that people didn't try to give her stickers; it's just that the stickers didn't stick. Some admired Lucia for having no dots, so they would run up and give her a star. But it would fall off. Some would look down on her for having no stars, so they would give her a dot. But it wouldn't stay either. 'That's the way I want to be,'thought Punchinello. 'I don't want anyone's marks.' So he asked the stickerless Wemmick how she did it. "It's easy," Lucia replied. "every day I go see Eli."
"Eli?" "Yes, Eli. The woodcarver. I sit in the workshop with him." "Why?" "Why don't you find out for yourself? Go up the hill. He's there."
And with that the Wemmick with no marks turned and skipped away. "But he won't want to see me!" Punchinello cried out. Lucia didn't hear. So Punchinello went home. He sat near a window and watched the wooden people as they scurried around giving each other stars and dots. "It's not right," he muttered to himself. And he resolved to go see Eli. He walked up the narrow path to the top of the hill and stepped into the big shop. His wooden eyes widened at the size of everything. The stool was as tall as he was. He had to stretch on his tiptoes to see the top of the workbench. A hammer was as long as his arm. Punchinello swallowed hard. "I'm not staying here!" and he turned to leave. Then he heard his name.
"Punchinello?" The voice was deep and strong. Punchinello stopped. "Punchinello! How good to see you. Come and let me have a look at you." Punchinello turned slowly and looked at the large bearded craftsman. "You know my name?" the little Wemmick asked.
"Of course I do. I made you." Eli stooped down and picked him up and set him on the bench. "Hmm," the maker spoke thoughtfully as he inspected the gray circles. "Looks like you've been given some bad marks." "I didn't mean to, Eli. I really tried hard." "Oh, you don't have to defend yourself to me, child. I don't care what the other Wemmicks think." "You don't?"
No, and you shouldn't either. Who are they to give stars or dots?
They're Wemmicks just like you. What they think doesn't matter, Punchinello. All that matters is what I think. And I think you are pretty special."
Punchinello laughed. "Me, special? Why? I can't walk fast. I can't jump. My paint is peeling. Why do I matter to you?"
Eli looked at Punchinello, put his hands on those small wooden shoulders, and spoke very slowly. "Because you're mine. That's why you matter to me."
Punchinello had never had anyone look at him like this--much less his maker. He didn't know what to say.
"Every day I've been hoping you'd come," Eli explained.
"I came because I met someone who had no marks."
"I know. She told me about you."
"Why don't the stickers stay on her?"
"Because she has decided that what I think is more important than what they think. The stickers only stick if you let them."
"The stickers only stick if they matter to you. The more you trust my love, the less you care about the stickers."
"I'm not sure I understand."
"You will, but it will take time. You've got a lot of marks. For now, just come to see me every day and let me remind you how much I care." Eli lifted Punchinello off the bench and set him on the ground. "Remember," Eli said as the Wemmick walked out the door. "You are special because I made you. And I don't make mistakes."
Punchinello didn't stop, but in his heart he thought, "I think he really means it."
And when he did, a dot fell to the ground.
May all your dots fall silently to the ground, for if given by man, they matter only to other men, if given by the Gods, no one questions, the scars that make up our lives. (when given the choice, pass out stars, drop the dots in the trash.)

- Max Lucado

The Cracked Pot

A water-bearer carries two large pots on a yoke across his shoulders up the hill from the river to his master's house each day. One has a crack and leaks half its water out each day before arriving at the house. The other pot is perfect and always delivered a full portion of water after the long walk from the river.

Finally, after years of arriving half-empty and feeling guilty, the cracked pot apologized to the water-bearer. It was miserable. "I'm sorry that I couldn't accomplish what the perfect pot did."
The water-bearer says, "What do you have to apologize for?"
"After all this time, I still only deliver half my load of water. I make more work for you because of my flaw."
The man smiled and told the pot. "Take note of all the lovely flowers growing on the side of the path where I carried you. The flowers grew so lovely because of the water you leaked. There are no flowers on the perfect pot's side."

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Who you choose to become, as you make your way through this journey called life, is gravy on top of an already wonderful meal. The moment you entered into this world, the celebration began. Your presence here has been and will always be enough. There is nothing to prove or nothing that needs to be accomplished. There is nothing to find or uncover. The simple truth is that you were made from love and who you are, as you are in this moment, has always been enough. You are loved from a source so beautiful and humble. You are loved by the Divine.

Friday, January 21, 2011

Hope is… an outstretched hand in the dark… a staircase into the unknown… a thing with feathers that perches in our soul. Poets, philosophers and spiritual leaders have always used a myriad of images to describe our intangible belief that things will improve – the illness will be cured, love will be found and the dream will be achieved.

Hope, which is often an extension of faith, can be inspired by God or religious scripture. Sometimes it’s found in the compassion of a stranger lending a hand after a disaster – and sometimes hope whispers to the deepest recesses of our souls urging us to reach deeper into our own determination to succeed. Even in the worst of times, we can still find a reason to hope.

Thursday, January 20, 2011

The Good things In Life

falling asleep to the sound of rain
waking up to a thunderstorm
staying in your pajamas all day
finding something that was lost
noticing something you never have before
feeling pretty
getting scared and holding on to someone
using a blanket straight out of the dryer
deep talks with your best friend
when someone notices your new haircut
finally understanding something
being trusted with a secret
playing your favorite song on repeat and singing away !!
microwaved marshmallows
getting new glasses and seeing everything clearly

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Angels Unaware by Cora Eelman

I know sometimes you wonder
when you're feeling all alone,
When times are more than difficult
and your cares seem all your own.
Just remember that I'm praying
God will watch and care for you. 
When you doubt his love and presence,
He will prove to you it's true.
He guards your every footstep
Though you do not know He's there-
When you find this angel's feather,
Know He's been there--unaware!

Do we have guardian angels? The Bible doesn't give a definitive answer on that, although the Lord Jesus did say, "See that you do not look down on one of these little ones. For I tell you that their angels in heaven always see the face of my Father in heaven." (Matthew 18:10) And Psalm 91:11 promises, "For He will command His angels concerning you to guard you in all your ways."
The angels are still there, continuing to minister in pain and death. We usually don't realize the role of angels in the midst of horrible circumstances because their work is unseen and often unfelt.
Behind the question of, "Where are the angels?" is the very difficult problem of why a good God would allow pain and suffering. The book of Job gives us two important insights into the problem of pain: first, when disasters and suffering assail us in the physical realm, there may be something bigger and more important going on in the unseen spiritual realm.{5} Second, God never gives Job an answer to his demand to know the "why": He just says, "I am the sovereign Lord, acting in ways you cannot understand. You just need to trust Me, that I know what I'm doing." The fact that God is in control, that He allows all pain and suffering for a reason, is the great comfort that we need to remember when it seems like the angels have forsaken us. They haven't, because God hasn't.
There are good angels, and there are bad angels. All of them were created as holy angels, but about a third of them rebelled against God and fell from their sinless position. Satan, the leader of these demons or unholy angels, is a liar, a murderer, and a thief. (John 10:10) He hates God and he passionately hates God's people. The Bible tells us that he prowls around like a roaring lion, seeking whom he may devour (1 Peter 5:8). We need to remember that Satan and all the demons are supernaturally brilliant, and Satan disguises himself as an angel of light (2 Cor. 11:14).
The enemy of our souls is using a new twist on an old lie, exploiting the current interest in angels to attract the untaught and the undiscerning. Much of the current angel mania is simply New Age philosophy, which is actually old-fashioned pantheism. Pantheism is the belief that everything--an impersonal God as well as every part of the creation--is one big unity. All is one, God is one, we are God--and New Age philosophy throws reincarnation into the mix as well.
Some self-styled "angel experts" instruct their followers to love their angels and call upon them for health, healing, prosperity, and guidance. But angels are God's servants, and all this attention and emphasis and glory should go to God, not His servants. God says, "I will not share my glory with another" (Isaiah 42:8). Scripture makes no mention of loving angels--only God, His word, and people. And it never tells us to pray to angels, only to the Lord Himself.
There are four angel names that keep popping up in the angel literature: Michael, Gabriel, Uriel, and Raphael. Michael and Gabriel are the only angels mentioned by name in the Bible. The other two show up in the apocryphal First Book of Enoch, which includes a fanciful account of the actions of these four beings. [Note: it has been brought to my attention that there are actually two other named angels in the Bible: Apollyon, the angel of the abyss in Revelation 9:11, and Satan, who is an evil, fallen angel.] 
We need to remember that God's angels are not teachers. God's word says they are messengers--that's what "angel" means--and they minister to us. God has revealed to us everything we need for life and godliness (2 Peter 1:3), so any hidden knowledge that spirit beings try to impart is by nature evil and demonic.
Much of the angel literature refers to "the angel within." But angels are a separate part of the creation. They were created before man as a different kind. They are not within us. The movie "It's a Wonderful Life" notwithstanding, when we hear a bell ring it does not mean that an angel is getting his wings. Nor do good people, especially children, become angels when they die. We remain human beings--not angels, and certainly not God.
It's very true that many have "entertained angels unaware" (Hebrews 13:2). But we need to make sure we're entertaining the right kind of angels!

Monday, January 17, 2011

My Angel ever at my side

how lovely you must be--
To leave your home in heaven,
to guard a child like me.

When I'm far away from home,
or maybe hard at play
I know you will protect me,
from harm along the way.

Your beautiful and shining face,
I see not, though you're near
The sweetness of your lovely voice,
I cannot really hear.

When I pray, you're praying too,
your prayer is just for me.
But, when I sleep you never do,
You're watching over me.

Love is so much more...
It brings peace into chaos,
Patience where there are knee-jerk reaction regrets,
Kindness where there are sharp edges,
Joy where there is pain,
Confidence and comfort where there has been fear,
Strength where one is weak and broken,
Protection over and around the vulnerable,
Speaks high worth and value to the poor,
Gives acceptance to the rejected,
Hope for the impossible,
Light in the darkness,
Love gives rather than takes,
Brings unity where there are divisions,
Understanding where there are disagreements,
Hugs where weapons were once used,
Forgiveness where there was once bleeding wounds,
Mercy where there were harsh words of judgment,
A warmth where cold abandonment once resided,
Serves an eviction notice to all that is bad,
Puts out a welcome mat to all that is good,
Love is never outlawed,
Doesn't strut, force itself, or say "me first",
Keeps no score card on others wrongs,
Puts up with a lot,
Gives children security and emotional wholeness,
Is the staying power for a lasting relationship,
Always moves forward,
Is the Force that doesn't force,
Can create a beautiful trophy out of a trashed life,
Never runs out of or uses up all resources,
Is the reason why no one is ever really alone,
Can't be separated from,
And is an Ocean of so much more,
Who wouldn't want that?

Friday, January 14, 2011

In biblical times, if a lamb wandered away from the flock, the shepherd searched for that lamb until he found it. The shepherd sometimes broke one of the lamb's legs and then carried the wounded lamb on his shoulders until the leg was healed. The lamb developed such a close relationship with the shepherd, that when its leg was healed, the lamb would never again wander away from the one who had rescued it and cared for it so tenderly. . I have drawn closest to the Savior when I am hurting the most. He is really the only one who can sooth my pain. There may not be much understanding on my part, but there is a longing to draw so close to the Savior that I will totally rely on His love and His promises. He has never failed me. The Scripture, "Come unto me and I will give you rest," has kept me going so many times when my emotions wanted to just give in completely to despair and depression. I try to visualize myself being carried in the arms of Jesus. He is always there, urging me on, whispering in my ear to never give up, pulling me as close to Him as I am willing to come, all the time saying, "Come closer, my child; depend on Me completely, and I will see you through this, no matter what happens." God has put some special people in my path, people who lift me up and encourage me with their love and prayers. I have come to believe that our steps are truly ordered - each and every one. My job is to seek out and walk in the steps He has planned for me - even when those steps are filled with pain and confusion.  I asked God "why" many times and while I know He understands my frailty as a servant, He keeps giving me the same answer, "Hang on, I am with you. We can do this together." If you sometimes feel like one of those lambs with a broken leg, just know that if you ask, the Savior will pick you up, hold you tightly, and carry you until you can stand again. Jesus Christ, the Good Shepherd, will forever call us to come closer, never pushing us away. Even when life comes at us like a hurricane, we know we have the hope of Jesus Christ. We know why we are here on this earth - to know Him, to love Him, and to serve Him - so that we can spend eternity with Him in Heaven. Cling to the hope that can only be found in knowing God. Share that same hope with those who are hurting, broken and looking for a Savior. 

Thursday, January 13, 2011

" Find a guy who calls you beautiful instead of hot, who calls you back when you hang up on him, who will lie under the stars and listen to your heartbeat, or will stay awake just to watch you sleep... wait for the boy who kisses your forehead, who wants to show you off to the world when you are in sweats, who holds your hand in front of his friends, who thinks you' re just as pretty without makeup on. One who is constantly reminding you of how much he cares and how lucky he is to have YOU... The one who turns to his friends and says, thats her... "

-- Unknown

Monday, January 10, 2011


May you find serenity and tranquility in a world you may not always
May the pain you have known and the conflict you have experienced give
you the strength to walk through life facing each new situation with
optimism and courage.
Always know that there are those whose love and understanding will
always be there, even when you feel most alone.
May you discover enough goodness in others to believe in a world of
May a kind word, a reassuring touch, a warm smile be yours every day of
your life, and may you give these gifts as well as receive them.
Remember the sunshine when the storm seems unending.
Teach love to those who know hate, and let that love embrace you as you
go into the world.
May the teaching of those you admire become part of you, so that you may
call upon them.
Remember, those whose lives you have touched and who have touched yours
are always a part of you, even if the encounters were less than you
would have wished.
May you not become too concerned with material matters, but instead
place immeasurable value on the goodness in your heart.
Find time in each day to see the beauty and love in the world around
Realize that each person has limitless abilities, but each of us is
different in our own way.
What you may feel you lack in one regard may be more than compensated
for in another.
What you feel you lack in the present may become one of your strengths
in the future.
May you see your future as one filled with promise and possibility.
Learn to view everything as a worthwhile experience.
May you find enough inner strength to determine your own worth by
yourself, and not be dependent on an other's judgments of your
May you always feel loved.
-- Author Unknown

Saturday, January 08, 2011





What It's All About.....

I have been asking the wrong questions. Why? Why are we here? What are we to learn?

There is no reason other than to pay witness - me to you and you to I. I see you. I see your beauty and your pain, your struggle, your rise, your settling into it: the woman on the stairs, the man on the bus, the child in the diner chair. It is only to see one another - to pay witness, to say, yes, you are of value. And me - here is my scar. Run your finger along it. Know it. We are all here - now - in our time. And it is short, but we are important within it.
And what are we to learn?
Just that and nothing more. The tenuous string of each of us. The poignancy. The brevity. We are - and then we're not. And in the meantime let's be gentle with each other, shed of ourselves judgement, for who is any one to judge another? Who is any one of us to say, I do it better, I do it right? We are all pitiable creatures, and too, we are all magnificent in our moment. We are all - each to each. And so let us pay witness. You - valuable shining fallible human you. And me, too.
It is a cruel world
but it doesn't have to be.

Thursday, January 06, 2011

100+ things I want to do well

  • give grace
  • be a nutritionally educated chef for my family
  • take breaks and get away on a boat for a minute or two
  • respect others who disagree
  • ask in prayer continually for the need that I know of in my little world and in the big world
  • see the heart not the behavior
  • rejoice with those who are rejoicing
  • comfort those who need comfort
  • listen to a child speaking by looking them in the eyes on their level
  • live free of the 'cancer' of resentment and bitterness by forgiving
  • forgive even when and especially when they aren't sorry
  • say 'I'm sorry' quickly when needed
  • influence inspired living
  • represent well
  • master childlike faith
  • stop trying so hard and let Him do it through me
  • let go of what I need to
  • grieve when I need to
  • consider caring criticism
  • hear the Quiet Still Voice
  • shun negativity
  • wear God's glasses to see like He sees
  • live balanced
  • keep boundaries and margins
  • show compassion
  • avoid grumbling
  • avoid complaining
  • invent
  • repurpose
  • upcycle
  • recycle
  • obey the laws of the land
  • drive with manners
  • avoid selfishness and narcissism
  • avoid intimidation
  • live 'marathon' not 'sprint'
  • live in a state of perseverance
  • be open for change thus often times progress
  • take what I have and do my best with all I have
  • treat all people the same whether rich or poor, famous or homeless...
  • develop into a PHD of showing God's love
  • pray for those who misunderstand or judge me
  • value every human being, young or old, born or unborn, rich or poor, healthy or ill...
  • value all social classes
  • appreciate all ethnic groups
  • keep on reading
  • garden and harvest my own bounty
  • avoid thinking I know much
  • sow seeds of kindness and purity
  • sow seeds of respect and honor
  • show mercy (and I'll be shown mercy)
  • be a pit bull when it come to hanging on to Love
  • never give up
  • live pointed toward the One with whom nothing is impossible
  • give acceptance
  • give attention
  • live fearlessly
  • listen at least twice as much as I speak
  • enjoy cleaning and doing laundry
  • cook
  • sing
  • dance
  • forgive as I've been forgiven
  • pray for my enemies
  • love my enemies
  • dream
  • create
  • rest
  • 'be' where ever I am
  • help others discover their unique strengths and talents
  • discover my own strengths and talents
  • make room for stillness
  • testify of Love and all He is
  • run some more
  • read
  • learn
  • travel
  • be a grace dispenser
  • understand others by hearing their story
  • avoid throwing 'rocks' of judgment at myself
  • avoid throwing 'rocks' of judgment towards others
  • always have room in my life for kindness toward strangers
  • live a REAL life including flaws and failures but with tenacity to GET UP and keep going
  • live a legacy of grace
  • encourage other's dreams
  • wear an apron when baking and like it
  • model forgivness
  • model faith, hope, and love
  • model peace
  • model joy
  • treat children the way I want others to treat my children
  • treat teenagers the way I want others to treat my teenagers
  • treat others the way I want to be treated
  • kiss the faces of my children often
  • hug my children much
  • pray for those who won't
  • hope for those who don't
  • forgive deeply
  • forgive quickly
  • live simply
  • hope always
  • think BIG
  • receive Love then give Love
  • live inspired then inspire
  • enjoy everyday 

Wednesday, January 05, 2011

One Day at a Time

"As your days—so shall your strength be!" Deuteronomy 33:25
One of the secrets of happy and beautiful life, is to live one day at a time. Really, we never have anything to do any day—but the bit of God's will for that day. If we do that well—we have absolutely nothing else to do.
Time is given to us in days. It was so from the beginning. This breaking up of time into little daily portions means a great deal more than we are accustomed to think. For one thing, it illustrates the gentleness and goodness of God. It would have made life intolerably burdensome if a year, instead of a day—had been the unit of division. It would have been hard to carry a heavy load, to endure a great sorrow, or to keep on at a hard duty—for such a long stretch of time. How dreary our common task-work would be—if there were no breaks in it, if we had to keep our hand to the plough for a whole year! We never could go on with our struggles, our battles, our suffering—if night did not mercifully settle down with its darkness, and bid us rest and renew our strength.
We do not understand how great a mercy there is for us in the briefness of our short days. If they were even twice as long as they are—life would be intolerable! Many a time when the sun goes down—we feel that we could scarcely have gone another step. We would have fainted in defeat—if the summons to rest had not come just when it did.
We see the graciousness of the divine thoughtfulness in giving us time in periods of little days, which we can easily get through with—and not in great years, in which we would faint and fall by the way. It makes it possible for us to go on through all the long years and not to be overwrought, for we never have given to us at any one time—more than we can do between the morning and the evening.
If we learn well the lesson of living just one day at a time, without anxiety for either yesterday or tomorrow, we shall have found one of the great secrets of Christian peace. That is the way God teaches us to live. That is the lesson both of the Bible and of nature. If we learn it, it will cure us of all anxiety; it will save us from all feverish haste; it will enable us to live sweetly in any experience.
"Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own." Matthew 6:34