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Posts tagged ‘love’

LANARA

Have you ever met someone that you instantly loved?  I’m not talking about couple love at first sight stuff.  I’m talking about the beginning of a friendship that you know will withstand the test of time.

Have you ever felt comfortable in the presence of another person within the first few minutes of your arrival?  Then, the longer you stay, the more comfort and peace you experience.  It’s a crazy awesome feeling.

I was so blessed to be able to meet Lanara Southard in Pensacola, Florida this past Thursday.  Not only did I get to meet her, but I also had the pleasure of experiencing her hospitality.  She is a lovely example of true southern hospitality.

Lanara is not JUST hospitable, but also very caring, loving, complimentary and full of JESUS’ love.  The latter, of course, is what leads to all the former.  With Jesus in her heart and the ruler of her life, she is able to show those around her such abounding love, it’s quite breathtaking.

She is one of the cutest ladies I’ve ever met.  I love to hear her tell jokes.  Her laugh is contagious.  Her energy is exhausting!  Seriously, she ran circles around all the others who were most graciously accepted into her home.  I loved to see her bounce from one task to another!  Such vigor and vitality!  Her husband Howard just smiles as she buzzes around.  He’s just as cute as she is!

She says charming little things like, “Heavens to Pete.” and “Hot as blue blazes.”

Lanara is such a GODLY example.  She has such wisdom and advice.  That makes her sound like she might be “old.”  But as our mutual friend Tammy says, “Not old, just older than you used to be.”  Lanara is far from old!   She has such wit, an enormous zest for life and a sweet spirit that makes you love her instantly.

She wants to be like Nehemiah (from the Bible), because he was an encourager and never gave up.  I’m a witness, she is ALREADY there!  She told me she was proud of me, that I was a thinker and she loved me while I was there.  Those were all such encouraging compliments and made me feel absolutely wonderful.  Words of affirmation are way up there in my love language hierarchy.  (www.5lovelanguages.com)

She shared many stories about the power of prayer.  She had many more, I’m certain she could have shared.  She said it’s important to have a lot of prayer and common sense.  What a statement!

She teaches a Sunday School class of a hundred plus women.  I was so honored to be able to be in her class. She said so many things about our victory when Jesus comes.  One thing I thought was the cutest and that which I will never forget: “When the horn toots, WE SCOOT.”  That gives me such joy and puts a huge smile on my face!

She fed us like queens, took care of our every need and allowed us to feel like we were in our own home.  I ate way too much and snacked on cashews so much that my body is going through withdrawals right now from not having a few today!

I know that everyone that enters Lanara’s life feels the same way I feel about her.  If they are able to be a guest in her home, I truly know they are blessed beyond measure!

Thank you Tammy (my friend who took me on this trip) for leading me to Lanara!

Thank you Lanara for being YOU!  You are a true inspiration!

  

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What are you wearing?

jake

What are you wearing today?  Khakis?  Tank top? Dress clothes? Casual?  Pajamas in front of the tv?

Ok, I’m not really asking for your physical appearance.  I’m actually not interested in that at all.

What I’m asking is your face, posture and tone saying…what are you wearing?

Are you bitter or angry?  Are you having that meeting in your mind of the crazies?  (believe me, I know of that meeting!)  Are you worried or anxious about something?  Are you sad about a situation or just because?

NO MATTER WHAT IT IS… You are wearing it.  Oh, you may the best actor/actress IN THE WORLD, but others can see it in your eyes and hear it in your tone.  If you harbor hate in your heart, it cannot help but flow out of some outlet.  We see it, it truly is obvious.

I know this, because I internalize things at times that I need to let go of.  I know what us humans do.  I’m human too!  Some think I’m happy-happy-happy, joy-joy-joy all the time, but to tell ya the truth, that ain’t the case.  I do admit as I’ve said before, I’m an obsessive optimist, but at times the optimism can’t sling the sword swift enough to slay the dragon of crazy in my mind.  I get down.  BUT I do get up again. (reminds me of a song…go to second 33 in the video below)

Even in my down times, I strive to get back up and put back on JOY.

I’m not trying to tell you what to wear like I do my 15 year old child, which may I say, I’ve pretty much given up on EXCEPT for sticking to appropriateness …  I’m trying to say, let’s fix our attitude before it oozes out of our face and other parts onto those around us like a poisonous gas. (ew)  We don’t want to taint those around us.  We don’t want to influence them to wear the ugliness of rejection or sadness.  We want to be encouragers and those who lift chins and point faces to the light.  Wear the attitude of gratitude and the smile of true happiness. Don’t be a poser.  Be intent and true and positive that no matter what battles are going on in your head, those things can be overcome and you can GLOW in your super duper new joyful duds.  Your face can wear the look of love.  Your posture can show others you are ready for company.  Your tone can be one of comfort and encouragement.

LET’S DO IT!

Whether you are wearing khakis or spandex (eeek!), wear happiness, love, peace and joy.

What are you wearing?

Song of the Day

My great friend who WON a luncheon/concert decided I was the blessed one to accompany her to this shindig today.  LOVE!  It was a great event which truly blessed me.  We got to listen to Brandon Heath sing, talk, answer questions and tell us more about his hygiene than we might of wanted to know.  It was entertaining, funny and a total hoot!

I’m going to share my fave song of the day below.  It truly spoke to me.  It made me think of the song— This World Is Not My Home, because it truly is, no matter what–going to be ALRIGHT.  This is not my home.  When I leave here, it’s alright (really better than alright), because you know where I will be.  Love this song!

NO CELL SERVICE!?!

I was so very blessed to be able to spend some time with a couple of gal friends out on the lake the last few days.  We smash-booked, watched funny clean comedian videos (yes, still funny!) and talked about life, family and especially JESUS.  It was an awesome time.  I love being with people who love Jesus and me.

There was only one “problem” …we had no cell service.  I put problem in parenthesis, because, really, it wasn’t a problem.  It’s not like we were totally cut off from the world.  The cabin actually had a LAN line phone in case anyone really needed to tell us something.  Not having the flow of constant instantaneous information for a few days was actually refreshing.

I do love sending a text to my man periodically or hearing my kiddos voices…OF COURSE!  Do not get me wrong when I say this, because I’m not anti-technology, but being severed from the bombarding of voice mails, texts, updates and notifications was so peaceful.

I remember when there weren’t such things.

In my lifetime, I’ve been without a phone when driving to another state. *gasp*  (I was asleep in the back seat while my parents took turns driving, but still)

I’ve actually had a phone that couldn’t search the internet.  *gasp*

I owned a cell phone that had to be carried around in a bag if you actually wanted to take it out of the vehicle and make it really “mobile.”  #ugly #bulky #ew  *gasp*

What would the younger generation do in times like these?  I’ve seen various challenges out there that ask to do this: disconnect.  Most will admit that disconnecting would make them quite antsy and maybe even a bit fearful.  The reliance on always knowing what is going on in the world has become so great that without it, we feel not only disconnected, but disoriented.  That is a scary word.  We shouldn’t feel like that about anything.

We should hold on to the fact that we are capable of going through life without this never ending connection.  We need to have a connection with Jesus most of all. (duh) Also, we need to connect with PEOPLE face to face …walking, talking, for real people.   I know social media keeps us connected in an interesting way, but the last few days have been that true, in your face kind of connection and I LIKED IT!

So, hey, NO CELL SERVICE!?!

I’m cool with that.  (for at least a few days anyway)

Try it and tell me what you think???

Why can’t WE love like that?

I keep thinking about that Samaritan woman at the well.  We always hear about the good Samaritan.  That story is such a classic.  Even people who don’t claim to be Jesus followers can recall some part of the story.  It’s been adapted into children’s book and the inspiration for other stories.  But what about the “bad” Samaritan Jesus talked to at Jacob’s Well?

In John 4, Jesus spoke to her there at the well.

And here’s the short of it:

HE knew everything about her…and LOVED HER anyway.

Why can’t we love like that?

That is all.

What’s YOUR excuse?

Excuses, excuses…

I asked one of my friends last night if they were still going to the same church to which they replied,

“No. I just don’t have time.”

How much time does going to church really take though?

I know some churches still do Sunday morning AND Sunday evening services, then there are Wednesday evenings.  From my own personal observations, most people only attend Sunday morning.  So, say it’s just Sunday morning service you go to…you don’t even come early for Sunday School.  I’m not sure about all churches, but our service starts at 11 and is usually out about 12.  That is…ONE HOUR.  Add on get-ready time (which you have to get clothes on and stuff for the day anyway, right?) and then some drive time depending on where you go (and I am almost certain, there is a church close to you)….STILL, at the max–TWO HOURS, right?  ..and you don’t have time?

I’m not judging!  That is not my job.  I’m just trying to understand.  I wasn’t trying to pry into anything either.  I was simply asking.  They could have just said a simple, “No.”  I probably wouldn’t have asked another question.  I’m not the question asker, that is my better-half.  But them offering an excuse for not going got my mind spinning.

Then I remembered there was this song I heard once about EXCUSES.

Excuses, excuses, you’ll hear them every day.
And the Devil he’ll supply them, if the church you stay away.
When people come to know the Lord, the Devil always loses
So to keep them folks away from church, he offers them excuses.

In the summer it’s too hot. And, in the winter, it’s too cold.
In the spring time when the weather’s just right, you find some place else to go.
Well, it’s up to the mountains or down to the beach or to visit some old friend.
Or, to just stay home and kinda relax and hope that some of the kin folks will start dropping in.

Well, the church benches are too hard. And, that choir sings way too loud.
Boy, you know how nervous you get when you’re sitting in a great big crowd.
The doctor told you, “Now, you better watch them crowds. They’ll set you back.”
But, you go to that old ball game because you say “it helps you to relax.”

Well, a headache Sunday morning and a backache Sunday night.
But by work time Monday morning, you’re feeling quite alright.
While one of the children has a cold, “Pneumonia, do you suppose?”
Why the whole family had to stay home, just to blow that poor kid’s nose.

Well, the preacher he’s too young. And, maybe he’s too old.
The sermons they’re not hard enough. And, maybe they’re too bold.
His voice is much too quiet-like. Sometimes he gets too loud.
He needs to have more dignity. Or, else he’s way too proud.

Well, the sermons they’re too long. And, maybe they’re too short.
He ought to preach the word with dignity instead of “stomp and snort.”
Well, that preacher we’ve got must be “the world’s most stuck up man.”
Well, one of the lady’s told me the other day, “Well, he didn’t even shake my hand.”

Excuses, excuses, you’ll hear them every day.
And the Devil he’ll supply them if the church you stay away.
When people come to know the Lord, the Devil always loses
So to keep them folks away from church, he offers them excuses.
So to keep them folks away from church, he offers them excuses.

I know that song may list some things we have all done instead of going to church.  I’m not pointing any fingers!  If I were doing that, I’d be pointing at myself.  I believe the song creates the list to exaggerate the fact that we all have goofy excuses why we don’t attend a church.

OHhhhh and before you go getting huffy about this blog today… I know a lot of people believe in God, but don’t go to church.  I have friends who love Jesus, but just don’t have a church family.  I understand that people take that stand…

I really don’t know personally.  When I didn’t go to church, I didn’t really know Jesus.

PERSONALLY…I just enjoy church and LOVE my church family.  I have so many friends that I wouldn’t have if I had not gotten into church.  I wouldn’t have known I could really carry a tune in a bucket if I hadn’t of gone to church.  I get to sing a lot of places now.  I learned how to fellowship with other Christians and I continue to learn so much in studying the Bible with others.  I love LOVE and church is just another place to give and receive it.  I could go on, but I think I’ve said enough.

What’s YOUR excuse?

Love, God

love

The last few days, God has revealed so many things to me.  He has made awesome things happen in my life.  These things cannot be explained or held to circumstance.  THESE THINGS ARE FOR REAL, AWESOME AND UNIQUE TO ME MIRACLES.  You can’t tell me any different.  No need in explaining in detail, but just know… to me, THEY ARE MIRACLES. Amazing showers of blessings is what I’m talking about!

Finding something you want after sincerely praying to God for it…that is an awesome miracle to me.  You’ve never had it happen to you?  TRY IT!  You might like it!  It is truly truly seriously, I’m for real… the best feeling.  It’s just like that little note above …a little letter to say “I LOVE YOU.”  He tells us in so many ways–we just have to recognize it!

YOU BEST RECOGNIZE!

I sooooooooooooooooooo thank God especially in the last few days (I know he does it all the time) for letting me know how much He has got me.  He’s got my back, covered me, protected me, helped me and held me up by His strength and power…

LOVE GOD!

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