Thursday, August 23, 2007
Hello --- its about time to water those gardens again, is it not? Today I want to talk briefly about the listening ear.
Scenario set up:
You've waited for days to tell a close friend about an experience you went through. Finally, you know she is available so you give her a call. While you are talking, you notice that her answers aren't always appropriate to your statements. Listening to the background noise coming from the other end of the phone, you hear her fingers busily TYPING as you are talking. This isn't the best feeling!
I must admit that I have done this -- especially to my poor mom. We talk every morning on the phone, and sometimes we type in each other's ears. Sorry mom! But seriously, this is not a good habit to get into.
Another common problem that we have is thinking about our response while someone else is talking. This prevents us from truly listening the way we should.
Follow-up is another area of need. When a friend asks us for prayer, we shouldn't glibly say "I'll be praying!" I realized that I was typing this into many comment boxes on many blogs -- making it impossible to remember all the requests that I was promising to pray for. A simple notepad will solve this problem. Just write the name and request down, and you will be able to pray when you promise to. You will also remember to follow up on the request and see how the person is making out.
Try to practice listening this week. I will too! Girls, those gardens are lookin' great ...
Saturday, August 18, 2007
I am sorry that I didn't get to post anything this week. Life has settled down considerably, but we had a couple of emotional things happen. Somehow I just didn't have the wherewithal to come up with a topic.
We have been rejoicing greatly with two of our dearest friends who found out that they were expecting in March. Beka and Charissa are sisters and I grew up with them.
Beka and her husband have been going through months of waiting on the Lord to bless her womb after a miscarriage a little more then a year and a half ago. She found out that she was pregnant about a month ago.
Charissa and her husband had already discovered that God had blessed her womb.
We were all wildly expectant for the two blessings due in March.
Please read this and secondly, this, post by Beka. Please join me in praying.
I posted this on my other blog after we found out about Charissa's miscarriage. The hymn I copied down has been such a blessing.
Thank you for being patient with me. I'll try to write something next week, as well as visit your individual blogs.
Lots of love.
Thursday, August 9, 2007
My little sweetie (she's 11 months old) took her first steps yesterday ... okay, it was really one step! But she did it twice, and her daddy and mommy are sooooo excited.
I hope that all of you are having a wonderful week. I did update the website last week, and put a new Scripture, recipe, and started a bonified store. There is only one product on the shelf so far, but I am working on that. I have some ideas ... let me know if you have any as well.
Praying for grace for all of us this week ...
Thursday, August 2, 2007
The Garden of Life
*Disclaimer* Although I know that somewhere there is a book or list of different meanings for different flowers. However, I don't know them all, and the attributes I've assigned to different flowers are entirely of my own imagination.
If your life were a garden, what would be growing in it? The Bible tells us that we do indeed "plant" things in our lives. Galatians 6:7 says, "Do not be deceived; God cannot be mocked. A man reaps what he sows." So, what are you growing in the garden of life?
Are the red roses of love growing in your garden? Love that is true, and not self-seeking? What about the white roses of purity? Are they in your life, presenting themselves clean and spotless to the world? Are the carnations of compassion flowering beautifully? Along with them, are the lilies of kindness blooming big and bright?
Walking on, would we find the daffodils of joy cheerfully making your garden a fun, joyful place? Are the pansies of peace placidly providing a calm atmosphere? Are the hyacinths of hope keeping your spirits up, while the lilacs of faith keeping your trust in God unwavering?
In the prettiest part of the garden, are the violets of gentleness doing well? And the primroses of patience, ever nearby, are they growing in depth and size? Are the daisies of grace dancing their way trough the garden, not only affecting your poise, but also helping you overlook others' faults? And the bluebells of modesty, are they blooming away, sweet, yet rarely noticed? Likewise, are the buttercups of humility helping all the other lovely flowers by protecting you from become high and haughty?
Close by, are the sunflowers of wisdom sharing their seeds and lessons learned with others? Are the peonies of prudence there as well, helping you know when to speak and when to keep silent? As a necessity to your reputation, are you tending the hydrangeas of honesty carefully? Are the chrysanthemums of justice working to make sure no one is taken advantage of, while the marigold of mercy works patiently and kindly with those who have done wrong?
No garden would be complete without the gardenias of diligence working hard to get things done. Coupled with the tulips of strength, a lot can be accomplished. Is the wisteria of endurance winding its way around, refusing to give up? What about the orchids of self-control? Are you growing those stronger and stronger?
In the center of the garden, is the goldenrod of the fear and love of the Lord shining brightly and reminding you not to compromise on His commands?
Just as it is important to plant good things in your garden, it is important to guard against the bad things that would try to grow. The devil loves to plant weeds of bitterness, envy, and srife, and send out briers of selfishness, laziness, and deceitfulness. He's always trying to find ways to plant evil little things, that would grow to wreak havoc on your garden. You must be alert, and tend your garden carefully. Pull out the weeds and cut away the briers as soon as you can, to prevent them from taking root and chocking the delicate flowers.
So, how's your garden? Is it a beautifully array of colors, spreading sweet perfume wherever you go, or is it drab and lifeless? Are you tending the garden of your life well?
posted by Anna Naomi