Silver Linings


 

Yesterday, as I was driving to town. I felt something that I haven’t felt in a long time. It was a glimpse at the silver lining, the light at the end of the tunnel, a simple realization of just pure happiness. Maybe just an untainted moment of appreciation. And a raw awareness to grasp that moment and really be IN IT! In a life of interruptions, I began to feel a nudge to sit in that garden while it was happening and smell the flowers. I think that what I have learned in life is that it happens. Life that is.

Nothing is going to really explain why good things happen to bad people and why bad things happen to good people. Recently having lost a few really good people, And knowing that the older we get, that losing people is not such a shock anymore. I remember as a kid, I was blessed that death had not touched my life until I got a lot older and when it did, it was a raw concept that I wasn’t ready for. When my grandparents died. I was devastated, but it was kind of an expected reality. But when you lose a parent, no matter how old you are or when you start to lose friends, there is this gaping hole that never seems to fill back up in quite the same way. I think after losing a few loved ones in my life, I’ve begun to recognize how much we take for granted when we are happy and how that saying “stop to smell the flowers” is much more than whimsical advice. And being stuck in sad or mad mode may just be my way of protecting myself from being robbed of joy. But suddenly I am realizing that building those walls is keeping any kind of joy OUT.  And how sad, because sitting there, feeling happy and hopeful for the few minutes I did, really was  me making myself stop and smell those metaphoric flowers and it felt great! I can’t even explain where it came from. Maybe just validation from new friendships or letting go of things easier… Or feeling hopeful again.

I’ve realized that letting go of things is key. If you are going to lug around all your hurts and baggage, you are never going to get to where God wants you to. The other day I was offended and I felt for a very good reason. The person in this instance said…. “I didn’t mean it that way.” And in my head I was thinking… “Yeah you did.” And I don’t think I was wrong.. But I have realized that if I choose to carry anger around, it is only hurting me. I can choose to move on or stay in my pity party of one.

I started this blog with the back drop  quote… “The One Thing I Know For Sure” and have randomly shared with you guys the things I am learning along the way… So I felt today while I was stopping to smell the flowers… I’d hang out in my garden a while and weed through my own seeds of wisdom….So here you go!

Being happy is a choice… Taking back the power and deciding that this is not the way that you want your story to end and starting to rewrite it is key…. Forgive others. Not because they deserve it, but because you deserve the peace it will give you to let go…  Live more in Corinthians 13 and decide to just love without noticing how other people are doing it wrong….  Never let go of your dreams. Ever. Walk on the beach often. If you feel joy. STOP. And roll in it! Consider your life a series of footprints that God will show you someday, and imagine viewing the paths you chose with HIM. Kindness doesn’t hurt. Everything can change in the blink of an eye so forgive often and love as if you will never get that chance again. And always look for the silver lining!

It Is Well With My Soul


I have written a fictional memoir. It basically happened exactly the way that I described it, but to protect the ones involved who may not wish to be called out, I changed the names to avoid embarassment.

https://dianereedwiter.wordpress.com/2015/02/23/the-end/

It is funny, that though that was a time in my life that was pretty dark, I also have some pretty great memories during those very same days. And now, I really can’t say that I would like to change a lot about my life because I am in the midst of this amazing revelation between me and myself. Amost as if I have found a new friend… in me….

I have a new appreciation for the sentence: “I have been blind and now I can see.”

clouds of joy

I have been in such a dark place for so long that it is just nice to really feel the sunshine and smell the rain, to kiss the soft cheek of a baby and laugh really hard. To love the people I love with every cell of my being and to try to understand that this life is not the end and really have the faith that there is something more. And to try to get in touch with the journey.

BeFunky_triumphant.jpg

We all have this vessel that carries our souls around. But those vessel are all just temporary. What is important is the soul inside the vessel. God gives us each a journey all of our own. And lessons to go with it. We may not have a choice of the vessels we are given. But we do have complete control of the soul it contains.

It is not all about the bad times, it is about embracing the joy and the good that comes out of the lessons that have brought us to this place. Life is not ever going to be perfect. No movie nor best selling book will ever have a story that doesn’t have some ups and downs. That’s just how it is. And it is what we do with the downs that help us appreciate the ups. You can stay stuck in the dark or you can seek the light. And everyday we have the exact same choice. And today…

It is well with my soul.

I do hope that you take the time to click here. I promise it will be worth a few minutes of your time.

My Strength


baby smile

I have been working a lot lately, so when I come home, I just kind of zonk out and recently have not been writing too much. But I had to share this one that came to me the other day while I was at work (of course ~ since I’m always there!)

Have you ever been in a funk and totally zoned out? Perhaps standing in a line at a register waiting to be checked out, and a baby catches your eye and smiles at you? In a split second, you are transported to a place of innocent joy between you and that smiling baby. You smile back only to receive an even bigger smile. At that moment, nothing else matters, not bills, being late for an important date, or even what has you really worried. It is as if God Himself, reached down to hug you. The innocent exchange reminds you of bigger things. Maybe even a glimpse of a speck of what heaven will be like. Nothing but innocent joy.

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The other day I was ouside at work. Even though I work in a beautiful piece of God’s country where squirrels scamper just inches away and birds sing to me as I do my job, I feel a bit like Cinderella having to clean out the chimney, (in my case tubs) waiting for my Prince to rescue me.

river oaks hot springs spa20121207_125633 hot tubs

cinderella mopping

(after all of my work… they look like this…)

hot tub

hot tub2

I have to climb up and down hills all day long, and under hot tubs that might have snakes and spiders where I have to go. And I have to admit that I don’t always stop to smell the flowers as I head under each tub.

tired maid

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I asked God to give me something profound as I walked around the other day in a particular funk. And I amost heard His voice as He gave me:

“The joy of the Lord is my strength”. 

Wow!! It was such an intense and fast answer that it brought quick tears to my eyes. I asked for more and was given the vision of how I love to make people laugh. Particularly  people who I respect, like my dad or a person that I place a little above myself. And I realized that laughter translates into joy and giving joy is empowering. Hence; maybe the same goes for the meaning of  strength in the verse God gave to me? I pondered a bit more. (Funny how if you stay focused, God will talk to you as long as you talk back and sometimes even when you don’t!)  I realized that desiring to give God JOY is my strength. When I know that I know that I know that my heart is only wanting to make God “laugh” or make Him proud or happy, I am as strong as Samson!

I have been feeling blue lately and disappointed by people. From the time I was young I’ve had a habit of looking up to people; Teachers, Politicians,  men and women of God. And ultimately have discovered that they are all human. And unfortunately, all eventually succumb to pride and prejudice in their own ways. And maybe that is a good thing. Because when I start to admire someone too much, I usually am disappointed. I have just begun to learn that it is not fair to them. No one is ever going to not disappoint me. No one but God that is. And so my focus should be finding my strength in His joy!

A black cloud followed me

as I walked out my  front door.

Grumbling, I got in my car

 thinking I couldn’t take much more!

The day seemed to move slowly

and it lasted way too long,

counting the hours, I wondered

what else could possibly go wrong?

Suddenly I realized

I hadn’t started out in prayer.

Nor invited YOU my Lord

to follow me anywhere…

And so I stopped everything

as I bowed my head to pray,

finally inviting You

into what was left of my long day.

Funny how the traffic didn’t seem

to bother me anymore,

and when I stopped to pick up groceries

a stanger held my door.

And  I knew you’d heard my prayer

after standing in line a while,

when  that baby caught my eye

and gave me the biggest smile!

happy baby in grocery cart

That’s when I knew YOU gave to me,

a sample of YOUR grace,

and showed me that the Joy of the Lord

truly is my strength!

Diane Reed

2013

The Joy of The Lord