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Archive for the ‘Life’ Category

Those three…

We are all in search for something.  The meaning of life?

Most would like to know the meaning of life and use every minute to ponder and wonder. Sometimes searching gets us exhausted and while searching, striving to find something, we miss out on the things we really need to focus on.  

God, family, friends...  We give up on those three important things to stay connected with a world that doesn’t really care if we are here or not when those three truly do.

God, family and friends love us, care about us, want us.

Watching TV, looking down at our phones, staring at a computer screen (like I’m doing now) or searching for things to entertain us limits us at times.  While trying to broaden our minds, we might find ourselves filling them with useless information when we could be experiencing something new, innovative or just plain fun instead!

My day today started out with sitting in a deer stand.  This wasn’t a new real life experience for me or something particularly innovative, but it was fun.  I’ve not done it in many years.  It’s not something I’ve ever really loved to do.  After today, I’m not saying I’m some deer hunting convert either, but I can say, it was nice being out in the woods, watching the squirrels and listening to my boy whisper about his friends and stories about school.  My husband wasn’t able to take him this morning, so I filled in.  I’m not the best fill in, of course, but I had to do.

So, I started off my day by searching for the camo shirt, searching for the keys, searching for the road to turn on, searching for the stand in the dark with coyotes howling in the background…

The search was on …then the wait was on … then he shot a sizable creature (I’m his witness–it was big) … then the search started again!

Like bloodhounds, we trailed the deer until for some reason, the blood stopped dropping. I know what frustration is today.  I know that sometimes, searching does not end in finding.  I know that we sometimes have to sit back, listen, watch, think, regroup and go home.  That is what we did today.  We searched and searched until I thought I was lost (I wasn’t!). The search came up empty, but the experience was something I don’t think either my boy or I will forget.

Let’s be IN SEARCH of memories we can make with others.  We need to focus on those three things I mentioned earlier.  I think our search for whatever we are looking for should start with those three.


 

 

 

 

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HOPE

I’ve blogged about my brother recently. (Jimmy Knox)  He’s at home with Hospice care battling cancer.  Today was a day filled with many phone calls and lots of visits.  He was his normal self–joking with his friends and telling stories about memories I can barely, if at all, remember.  He laughed out loud on more than one occasion.  The medicine that has, at times, made his speech incomprehensible was held at bay today.  It didn’t take over his brain or bind his lips.  I am so thankful for today!  The cancer is doing it’s wicked job.  I hate it.  But for now, my brother is doing all he can…keepin’ on keepin’ on.  He ain’t dead!  He ain’t done!  He has hope for each breath and second that God gifts him.

Although some days have been so hard to watch, his HOPE is amazing to watch.

Many of his friends have reached out to ask me about him or tell me about their experience with him.  They have all talked about how sweet of a friend my brother has been to them.  I’m proud of him.  I wanted to share the sweet, sincere description his friend Anthony Bonnette wrote about him today:

We all like to think that we are unique, that we’re not really like anybody else. We all like to think that we are still that same innocent kid from the yearbook pictures, just trapped in a grownup body. I think that way about myself. Jimbo  however, was not like anybody I have ever known. He was a child for the whole 30 years I knew him, sometimes fussy, but almost always genuine and sweet. What always amazed me about Jim was his Hope. God blessed him with a never ending reserve of sweet, unrelenting belief in the promise of tomorrow. Soon, Jimbo will leave this world that has failed to deliver on almost any of it’s promises to him, but against all odds, his Hope remains. So when I think about my friend Jim, who has been a much better friend to me than I’ve ever been to anyone, when I think about his unabashed smile, when I remember his booming laugh, and when I am struck by the hollow blow of never seeing him again in this life, it is then that I remember his defining characteristic. And I Hope.

Wow.

You Mad Bro?

Why do people get mad at you when you let them know that whatever they said or did upset you?
Boiling it down:  they are mad at you, because they did something wrong –period.

What happened to, “I’m sorry.”  “I didn’t know that hurt your feelings.”  “I didn’t realize….”  ???

OR THE DREADED…

“I was wrong.”  ???

I have gotten this attitude with students several times over the years.  They say something smart, goofy or against rules (like spray paint on the sidewalk “accidentally” by the art room when they KNOW not to spray paint anywhere NEAR the sidewalk). and when I correct them, they are like, “WHHHHHAAAAAAAAAT?!?”   I’ve had students smart off, turn red and get angry, put their head down on the desk and not talk (I like that one) and leave my room.  Thinking back, I giggle about it.  I mean, really?  They did something wrong… I asked them to stop or correct something and BAM..I’m the bad guy?  Now I’m like, “Whaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaat???”

This doesn’t just happen in the classroom.  It happens EVERYWHERE!  Most of the time it’s called–DRAMA.

What starts out as a simple confrontation, turns ugly.  One person lets the other person know they feel bad or sad about something the other person did…then blah blah blah, I hate you, blah blah blah, let’s stop being friends or get a divorce and talk bad about each other until we don’t even remember what started all the crazy in the first place.

These days, adults and youth alike seem to run to the internet to start the social media plethora of drama as well.  They hit facebook, twitter, instagram, kik, snapchat…. and the list goes on.  There they compose a post of hidden messages and crazy connotations.  It’s insanity!

Why can’t we act like we are supposed to?  Why can’t we just admit what we did was rude or insensitive or baaad?  We make up excuses on why we did it or how we could have done worse.  Wow, that helps the situation.

JUST SAY YOU’RE SORRY!  (( Oh yea, AND MEAN IT! ))

One time, I was riding with a friend in her awesome little fast car when she was pulled over by a state trooper.  I was giving her a hard time about it when he came up to the window.  He asked the standard questions.  Did she know how fast she was going? Honestly she said she really did not know.  We had been talking and she was not paying attention.  Then he asked her the next standard:  Is there a reason you were going 70 miles per hour when the speed limit is 55?  They way she answered him (I can still hear the way she said it) cracks me up to this day when I think of it:  “I was just speedin’.”  HONESTY.  She had no excuse for her crime.  She was speeding.  That was the end.  The trooper wasn’t rude or nice.  He was matter-of-fact.  She was too.  He pointed to what she did wrong and she admitted to it.  Done.

We need to do this more often.  ADMIT WE WERE WRONG.  Face up to it, take the consequences without griping about it and move forward.  DONE.

Jimmy Knox

We are all dying. It’s not something we like to chat about.  No one starts out a conversation with a question like, “So, when do you think you will die?”  We just don’t talk about it.  For most, dying is not at the forefront of our brains.

I’m just like anyone else.  I don’t relish the fact that one day I will have to go through some kind of “episode” in order to pass from this world.  I’m not scared of what will come after my last breath is taken here on earth.  I am a bit apprehensive about how that last breath is taken though.  I think it’s safe to say that I’m not alone in that.

Whether we like to talk about it or not, dying is real and inevitable.

AND Some people do not have the luxury of thinking someday or somehow I will die…

Some people know that they are terminally ill.  They know that it will more than likely be sooner than later.  They are looking death square on.  Of course, they can’t choose the exact day or hour, but there’s not much guess work to the fact that it is eminent.

Oh, I know GOD is in control and He can heal them right here on this planet at any second.  I know HE has that power.  I also know we all have a story and some stories end with a terminal disease.  God does heal those too, though, if their heart is right.  He takes them home to be with him where there is no more illness or any kind of pain that accompanies it.   Gives me goosebumps thinking about it.

My brother is terminal.  He told me just a few minutes ago that it is confirmed that he will be going home from the hospital in the next day or so, assigned to hospice.  He has been through so many things in his life.  He has battled diabetes and all the difficulties that come with that.   He was in a horrible car accident about 20 years ago that left one of his arms less able than the other, one leg shorter than the other, not to mention many other struggles that came along with that incident.  He became blind due to complications with diabetes about 10 years ago.  Through all of this, he has lived in the home we grew up in, almost always alone.  He has battled depression and other things that come along with physical pain.  He truly has been a soldier.  He has fought for a long time and continues to do so.  Just within the last year, he found out on top of all he’s already endured, he has cancer.  The word cancer makes me angry.  I’ve seen it do ugly things to so many people.  Now it has my brother.  I hate to question why … but it’s so hard not to.  Cancer seems so dark to me.

We should not take for granted each day God gives us.  None of us know when we will have our last day here.  We don’t know when those around us will spend their last either.

Please pray for my brother and his comfort.  He has been in pain so long.  I know he doesn’t want to leave this world, but he also knows it will happen much sooner than he had expected.    He does know Jesus. As I said earlier, though, not many really want to think about the “episode” it’s going to take in this world to meet Jesus in the next.  Please pray for his peace.

Thank you in advance for praying for Jimmy Knox.

WORRY, WORRY, WORRY!

Anybody remember that song from a popular country style variety show of the 70s?  Kornfield Kounty was a hoot!

I remember singing this song right along side, “Where OHHHHHH Where are You Tonight????”

Today was a day full of pushing worry away.  I felt the gloom, despair and agony taking over my mind!  Don’t worry, I didn’t need “the jug” like those guys have in the video.  Haha!

I am right smack dab in the middle of a situation here!  It’s one of those that just lends itself to uncertainty and unknowns.   I have faith and definitely want to KEEP THE FAITH.  I know God has it covered.  He will provide whatever is needed in the days, weeks…months to come. I know this!  I hold on to this!  I take comfort in His word, provision and guidance.  I would be so lost without HIS promises.

Here’s the thing…

I admit sometimes, that even though I know God’s got me, worry creeps up and my mind starts going down roads of concern and anxiousness.  I don’t mean to!  It is truly not intentional.  I like to walk on the BRIGHT SIDE, see the silver lining and think happy thoughts.  Worry just happens!  Then I find myself mentally shoveling it away again like one would clean out a horse stall.  I did that for a neighbor of mine when I was young until the horse stepped on my foot one day.  That was the end of that.

Let me focus again… SEE!  My mind wonders off the straight and narrow …SQUIRREL!!!

I’m getting to the point.  Worry, worry, worry…

Throughout this day, while I was working on pushing the worry out of my mind, God kept sending me messages through so many things.  Check this…

JUST NOW, as I’m writing this blog, my friend sent me this quote: “Worry is the enemy of faith.”  Yes!

And if worry can’t accomplish a little thing like that, what’s the use of worrying over bigger things? (Luke 12:26 NLT)  That’s just ONE verse that talks about worry in the Bible.  There are many others.  I promise, go look!   Woo Hoo!

I listened to Dr. Charles Stanley this evening while exercising and part of his sermon was about worry.  Amen!

I went to evening service tonight and Dr. Teddy Ott discussed worry.  Hallelujah!

I am audibly saying this while I type, “I know GOD… Thank YOU!”

He knows I don’t normally obsess over things.  I’m for the most part, an optimist.  I like wearing rose-colored glasses!

BUT TODAY…He knew I needed all of these things to help me remember that I DO NOT need to worry.  I don’t need to waste my time worrying about things that really, seriously, will either NEVER HAPPEN or even if they do, I can’t do a thing about.

I never ever need to sing that Hee Haw song!

There’s no gloom, despair or agony on me!

THANK YOU GOD!

It really is simple.

So my friend who used to be my boss posted this blog about the ONE WORD.  He’s a pretty smart guy and had asked his faculty to send him a word… I will let you go read his blog: PLEASE CLICK HERE TO READ HIS BLOG FIRST.

…and watch the ONE WORD video there…

Here’s part of my message I posted to his blog:

You know I can’t narrow my life to one word…THAT WOULD BE TOO SIMPLE! ALTHO–The word that has been repeating itself in my mind over and over for several days now in the face of all kinds of crazy life stuff (nothing bad, just life) is LOVE. I know I love, but do I love like I’m supposed to? Do I ALWAYS love like I’m supposed to? I don’t when I blow up at my kids or feel defeated looking at my laundry which has become like Mount Rushmore (serious, with faces and everything) …

I GOTTA REMEMBER TO LOVE in all circumstances. NO MATTER WHAT IS GOING ON!  People may hate on me, children may say my name like a broken record (ha!  kids these days don’t even know what “broken record” means) and I might feel stressed by stuff going on around me…BUT LOVE DOESN’T LOSE IT’S COOL…Love shows LOVE.  Love creates LOVE.  Love shows mercy and grace and brings on comfort and peace.
I want to LOVE like Jesus loves us.
LOVE!

It really is simple.

Real talk!

20140513-205659.jpg

I saw this and thought AND said YES!
There are so many excuses out there today. Just admit you are the reason you are the way you are. Yes, you may of had a not so good childhood and things and people in your path didn’t take care of you, hurt you or abandoned you…BUT THEY ARE NOT YOU. You make decisions. If you are MEAN—it’s because you choose to be. THE END.

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