Saturday, August 27, 2011

Just checking in. . . briefly!

Well, I am not becoming the most dependable blogger around as you can see;  I am doing my best to let blogging and the Internet have their place . . . and their place is to come after things with the higher priority.  I'm trying to remember that I have other things to do besides be on the computer.  I am loving the feeling I get from working towards a more balanced life right now.  That being said,  I think of blog posts ideas and things I want to write all the time, it seems, but they come at moments when I am not near the 'puter!


Update on the Technology Challenge:

I have managed keep off of the computer, like I had hoped, the last two Sundays.  Doing this with myself, I have started to notice that my kids and husband are really tuned in to the 'net or TV the majority of the time now.  Hmmm . . . . Maybe that will be the next challenge coming up after this one ends. :-)   To be honest, I feel like keeping my Sundays free from checking in online and trying to get some things done on the Internet after this challenge ends.  It's become a way of life for me and I am really enjoying the feeling of being unplugged in this way. My husband and I will talk it over and pray about it to see if God is leading us to do this as a family.  We'll see what happens.

I haven't been well in body this week, but God has really blessed my spirit in so many ways.  I am so thankful that He is allowing me and helping me become a person who can tune in to the needs of others and do my part to meet them in some way.  I won't go into detail, but being able to become more home-centered in my life and slow down my pace is opening doors of service and opportunities to be His hands and feet with those He brings across my path.  Although there's more I could say on that, I will sign off now and get back to some tasks and family time.  Lifting up those with needs today!

May you be blessed and know that He is near!

Reaching for His hem,


Tuesday, August 23, 2011

"Be Authentic" - At the Well

“Therefore confess your sins to each other and pray for each other so that you may be healed. 
The prayer of a righteous man is powerful and effective.” 

James 5:16

     I'm joining in today with "At the Well" and their challenge to blog on the topic of Being Authentic: being real, honest, and true with one another about what's really going on with our lives.

     I'll be honest here from the get-go:  it's hard for me to admit and share about my struggles and limitations with just anyone but the people who have proven to be "safe" in my life.  I think that there is wisdom in that since we don't need to be spilling our guts and sharing the secret parts of our souls with just anyone - - - BUT, keeping everything to ourselves and pasting on a happy face when we need support is robbing us of God's blessings in this area.  

     I know this to be true; I have lived it first-hand when there were times in my life when everything was falling apart . . . and I was all alone.  In that moment of truth, when you feel your foundations crumbling underneath your feet and you are reaching for that Hand to hold, God sometimes will send a real-world angel of encouragement to be Jesus in the Flesh for you.

     All too often when dealing with a personal crisis of any size we retreat into ourselves and the people who love us are left feeling like there is nothing they can do to help us.  They stand willing and able to meet the real needs we have at that very moment, but in our hurt and pride we turn away from them (in fear, anger, confusion) and in doing so, turn away from something special that God is wanting to do for us . . . through them.

     Like I said, I am the biggest offender in this area.  I have lived almost all of my 35 years not letting anyone see my imperfections, my limitations, my failings.  I was consumed by perfectionism and wanting to appear capable of dealing with everything in my life. I still don't want to impose or have to rely on another person;  I desire to have all of my loose ends tied up and all look beautiful.  Living with the fear of failure and being consumed by pleasing others can make it look like I have no need of God and His help for me.  

     In being authentic here, I must share that I am dealing with health problems that limit my energy and ability to remain as "busy" as I was before, out of the home, on a daily basis.  I have had to learn first-hand how to rely on God for my next step, my next breath, and my very life.  I am actually in a fragile state of health right now IF I don't remember that I DO have limitations physically.  I have neglected so much for so long that it's time to  face the reality of how things are, and by HIS Grace, work through it all.

     But, praise God for allowing me to partner with Him in His sufferings and to be walking in this journey of faith.  There are so many things I want to DO and accomplish for God, others, and myself - - - but it feels like I am in a waiting period right now.  I have been so used to working hard and setting goals that I am in a foreign land of taking one day at a time and valuing a new kind of normal.  I am learning that waiting and resting are the other sides of the coin of moving forward and achievement.  You need both to please God and have a balanced life.  We all need to rely on God and NOT ourselves.

     Being a classic overachiever and a person that could never say NO are part of the reasons I am dealing with having to rebuild my energy levels at the age of just 35.  I literally was burning the candle at both ends and ended up running out of wax.  I am learning to cherish and even crave a slower-paced lifestyle and each day provides more opportunities to see how my Father God is caring for me right now.

     I don't know what the future holds,  but like the saying goes, I know WHO holds the future and I trust Him more today than ever before.  I trust God for His healing hands to cover me, but in the meantime, I am listening to His heartbeat and learning how to rest in Him.  There are blessings to be found in the waiting, in the healing, and in the resting and renewal.

To God Be the Glory!

---Reaching for the hem, 


Saturday, August 13, 2011

Update: Pulling the Plug on Sunday Challenge, week 1

     I can honestly say that pulling the technology-plug last Sunday was less challenging than I expected, partly due to the fact that we were out of the house almost all day and I was away from my computer, etc.  We had church, a potluck, and spent the remainder of the day out at my mom's house.  I did allow myself a few minutes in the morning to peruse my email in-box to check if there was an email from my pastor regarding worship that morning (I play the piano), but other than that I didn't turn on the computer, read emails or blog updates, and look on Facebook . . . and it was WONDERFUL!  

     That may sound strange coming from a Blogger, but, at heart, I am one who cherishes the old, simple ways of life and focused, intentional relationship and conversations.   I felt less stressed, rushed, or distracted when "unplugged" all day last Sunday.  I was tuned in more to my family, especially when talking with my husband and kids.  I made eye contact and didn't feel frantic, trying to do too many things at once, even if it is something I do to relax.  (I'm still learning how to do that too. . . :-)

     During the day, I found myself becoming more aware of all of the times that I normally feel led to check my phone (emails) and Facebook as a general rule, and how easily it can be a distraction for me, even as a person who isn't techie by any stretch of the imagination!  I also started noticing how many other people were screen-watching all around me. It's become an epidemic today in our society and people feel the need to be "too connected" and unable to stay with the here and now because each notification sends them into a panic to check into what's new and what they may be missing.  

     What was once a huge faux pas has now become the norm.  Most of us wouldn't think to take a phone call when visiting or out to dinner with someone, but we screen-watch our phones, checking email, updating Facebook, and texting back and forth.  Most if not all of that can wait until we complete the time we spend with that one person.  Doing those things, when trying to be there for someone else, is an indication, directly or indirectly, of how we value them and the shared relationship.  I believe that we can show them their value by letting the other stuff go.  It can wait.  Yes, it can. :-)

     Although I am thankful for the advances in technology we have been given, I feel like it has taken the place in our society where we once placed a larger emphasis on authentic, face-to-face relationship building and one-on-one interaction.  Connecting through a screen and technology is a blessing, but, if given the choice,  I still prefer the real interaction we can have over a cup of something warm, looking into someone's eyes, or holding onto a real card or hand-written letter.  It's like the difference between eating a piece of mom's best apple pie, savoring the flavors and the enjoyment it brings to share it with someone, or just seeing a picture and the recipe in an email, sent to you by your mom.  

I'll take the apple pie please.  I'm choosing 'apple pie" Sundays from now on.

(Picture found on Google Images)

Reaching for the Hem, 


Thursday, August 11, 2011

The Freedom that comes from Submission

(Photo found on Google Images)

I've always considered myself to be a very traditional person, especially in my roles as a wife and momma to three kids. I desired from such a young age to exemplify the Proverbs 31 woman and live my life according to Titus 2.   Everything else was secondary to living for God in my home and serving my family.

I have been so blessed to be married to a man who loves, leads, and serves me according to God's plan.  We have a beautiful  marriage relationship and share an intimacy that I only dreamed about when praying for my future spouse.  I thought that I was being the epitome of the perfect wife (ha ha) in all the ways that mattered, but God has shown me an area (just one of many) that He desires to have full control: the area of submitting to my husband. in. every. way.

I have never had an issue with submission, at least what other people would notice.  I tend to be a passive person, and I'm not one to be bold and take charge of a situation.  I desire to have my husband lead me and make the decisions he feels is best for our family.  We both serve the LORD and our convictions match almost all of the time.  What was the problem?  What issue would *I* be having with submitting to my husband?  Was I really hearing from God in this?

While in prayer recently, the thought came to mind that I have found it easy to joyfully submit to my husband the majority of the time because he was leading us down the path that I thought we should be traveling on already.  *Lightbulb* How hard is it to agree with someone who is telling you what you want to hear?  My husband loves me so much he doesn't expect unrealistic things of me or hold me to a standard of perfection in how I love him and serve our family - - and he praises me and upholds me in my primary role of wife and momma.  The issue is: when I sense he is asking me to step out of my comfort zone and let him lead us into where HE feels God is taking us, I find myself hesitating to fully trust and step out in faith in him.

On the outside, I appear to be submitting to my husband, but inside I am filled with so many doubts and fears.  What are we going to do if _______?  Did he really know what God wants us to do with _________ ? Is he really hearing from God completely or do we need to ____________ ?  As a woman with that sin nature as Eve's daughter, I am learning that I have tended to question and doubt my husband's decisions and leadership (wise and loving that they are) rather than submit to him without reservation and complete trust in God's plan and decision to make Randy my head and leader.

I had this issue come to light just recently when Randy advised me and lovingly decided that I could be a full-time homemaker.  This is the answer to so many prayers and the deepest desires of my heart for so long . . . but, I doubted and worried, fretted and looked for a part-time job.  I actually had someone offer a job to me that I considered for a moment, worried that we will not have *enough* money to survive from day to day.  Rather than embracing the freedom that comes from being submitted to my husband (God) in this area, I CHOSE to take on the yoke of bondage to fear and trying to find my own way into freedom from financial pressure.

Each day, each moment, each breath finds me grappling with the decision to choose the freedom that comes from having a submitted will to my God first and my husband second.  I am praying that as I rest in the peace in knowing that God is leading my husband as he is leading me and our family, I can truly start to walk in victory over the enemy that is working to make me desire the power and control over my life.  Not my will but HIS be done in all things.

I thank God, that even in this area, He is still molding, preparing, and shaping me into the woman He has called me to be.  My God LOVES me, my husband LOVES me, and in choosing to submit and trust them to care for and lead me, I am given the freedom to rest in His promises and build up my marriage and family in His ways.  Amen!

The wise woman builds her house, but with her own hands the foolish one tears hers down.
Proverbs 14:1

*This post is also linked to on the following sites: *


Tuesday, August 2, 2011

"Pulling the Plug" on Sunday Challenge

(Picture found on Google Images)

     This may seem like a strange thing to come from a person who has just started blogging again, but I am feeling like God is calling and challenging me to set aside my Sundays as a "technology-free" day and take any freed up time and invest it in the relationships around me.  

     We get tempted to cram as many things in to each day and Sundays are no exception.  We run to church and run home.  We run errands and do chores we don't get to during the week.  We may even take the time to sit on the computer blogging, reading blogs and email updates, or catching up on Facebook.  I know that I have been someone who has spent time on Sundays doing those and many other things, especially when I worked online. I had to fit in the work when I could, and Sunday, other than going to church, was crammed full of the same work, stress, and checking things off on my to-do list that I was consumed with every other day of the week.

     Although I am not working a job now (Praise God!) and God is allowing me to be a full-time homemaker and become more home-centered, I can see that without some self-control I will continue to have my time and my tasks manage me.  I am choosing to be more mindful and intentional in this area; I pray that I can manage my time better and delegate my tasks to other days during the week to keep Sunday a day of rest, rejuvenation, and revival.  This challenge will be a step in better self-control and will lead me towards this goal.

     In choosing to do this, I am not being ruled by some outside standard of legalism and I don't want to put this challenge on anyone else, but rather I'm being compelled by a personal conviction God has placed on my heart in this area;  I want to be more intentional in spending time with my family and in worship of my Father God all the time, minus these modern-day distractions.  Setting aside my Sundays to "pull the plug" on technology will be a step in the right direction.

     Does anyone care to join me?  Pray and ask God to show you if He desires for you to set aside Sunday (or even part of that day) for private worship with Him and time spent investing in your family and relationships.  I intend with His strength to set aside the next four Sundays and not spend time interacting with media or technology, other than using my phone as necessary.  I pray that in doing this, He will draw all of us in my family closer together as we draw closer to Him.  

     His Handmaiden, reaching for the Hem,


A link to this post is also found here:


and here: