Tag Archive friends

ByDiania

If We All Pull Together

How many of you remember that little song with the big meaning from your childhood, the one that only had a few repeated choruses about pulling together and how happy we’d be? I think we learn more from our younger years then we even realize, we take little songs and apply them to simple little things without having thought about that little tune since childhood.

Pulling together is the very importance of Christianity, getting the impossible done when it almost seems impossible, raising funds for children you will never meet, but knowing they will be blessed from something you and a handful of others felt led to do.

Pulling together somehow keeps the joy in your heart, the smile on your face and the skip in your walk. Age holds no barrier to helping, God can and will use any one who applies for the job. You just have to be willing. No paper work or application necessary, and you get full benefits with a vacation package your sure to be happy with when you reach paradise…

Today I watched everyone pull together, the job got done and I thank God for letting me be a part of such a wonderful group of Christians, SO IF WE ALL PULL TOGETHER, TOGETHER, TOGETHER, IF WE ALL PULL TOGETHER THE HAPPIER WE’LL BE……

 

 

ByKaren

Be The Better Person!

Sometimes you can hold your head up for so long before the weight becomes too much to bare. You can put up a strong front and pretend that nothing bothers you. Then, when something happens or is said, that glass comes shattering down around you.

Ever feel like you have one of these in your back? Instead of stabbing them back, show love and pray!

It’s a simple fact that everyone you love is not going to love you back. Some will love you unconditionally, while others down you like a dog. They will put the knife in your back and twist it a few time to make sure it hurts. Then they will come and pour salt into your open wound. When in actuality, they are not happy with themselves or their circumstances, therefore, they will make sure that no one else is happy either. Whether they are jealous over a certain situation, over your family relationship, over your friendship with someone, anything in general, or just want to be the top dog with everyone, we have to continue to love and pray for those who despitefully use us.

So go ahead and love and pray, it will eventually get easier to handle if it doesn’t change. Be the better person and go on with your life. You can’t make someone else enjoy theirs.

ByKaren

Are You An Encourager Or A Murderer?

Just think about it for a minute. A friend comes to you who is down in the dumps. Life has dealt them a bad hand or it could be something minor. How do you react to the situation?

Now, let me give you a different scenario:

You are driving by a mountain cliff, and you see someone standing of the very edge, and if they jumped, it would be a certain death. What would you do or say?

There are some out there who would say, “Jump!” They may even give them the extra push. And then there are those who help to reason things out. Who will speak rationally, to try to change the out come.

The power of Life and Death are in the tongue. How you choose to react and the words that you speak to someone, especially when they are going thru something, can mean life or death to that person. Whether it’s spiritually or physically.

So take thought and pray about what God would have you do or say. Encourage someone today, be a blesser, not a murderer.

ByAngie

Your Legacy: How Will You Be Remembered?

Unfortunately, I don't think I'll ever be able to live this one down. Oh yeah, that's my legacy. Go me!

This question has been on my mind a lot lately. How will my children, grandchildren, friends, and family remember me?

Will I be remembered for making gingerbread every Christmas? Will it be for being a woman who strived her best to be a Godly wife and mother? I’m desperately hoping it’s not for being a procrastinating, scatter brained, unorganized, occasionally crabby person who ONE time made a bad batch of tacos and ever since her husband questioned her every time she suggested them for dinner… Or made anything else new for that matter.

How can we make sure that we are remembered for the good and not the bad?

I would say the best thing we can do is to make the positive in our lives outshine the negative. Live with a positive outlook as much as possible. Let Jesus’ light shine through you. Don’t hold grudges, act bitter, be mean, or easily offended. And while it can be an easy way to handle a delicate situation by being passive aggressive, is that really something we would want to be remembered for?

My Grandparents having my Mom dedicated as an infant

Recently I’ve been trying to take note of my habits. Which ones are great to have, which ones I don’t mind or are not damaging, and which ones I would never want to be remembered for. Then I sat and thought of my Grandparents… Two of the most caring, loving, Godly people I’ve ever known. I remember them for all the funny and wonderful things they did. I remember them for raising their family for Christ. I remember them for loving coffee, Diet Coke, and going out to eat. I remember them for being compassionate and passionate for the work of The Lord. Do I recall them having flaws and being human? Certainly! However, more often I remember them leading us by example in a positive, unique, Godly way.

I have taken it upon myself to be sure that I leave a similar legacy for my own children and grandchildren. Why “similar” and not the exact same you ask? Because it’s MY legacy. Not Dorothy’s. Not Paul Benjamin’s. It’s ANGIE’s legacy. I want to pass down all of those same things, but in my own way with some added flare that says “Angie was here…” Part of that is that I MUST agree to have my photo taken more often. While still. Not on a ride at Disneyland making some dumb face. Ugh… 😉

What about you? How will you be sure that you are passing down what would be good habits for your children and not setting them up for a fall?

 

ByAngie

A “Simple” Calling: The Ministry of Friendship

A friend loves at all times… Proverbs 17:17 NKJV

This calling is a rather obvious one… but I would like to still touch on the topic of friendship.

What does it mean to be a true friend? Is it just a social thing? Obviously, it is not. If it were, we would not become so emotional when a friend is lost. Does it mean to be dependable? How about caring? Being a good listener? Offering advice when requested? Understanding and compassionate? I think all of those things and so much more are what make a good friend.

How many times have you been having a bad day, but a good friend called and you instantly cheered right up? I know for me, personally, I have just a few friends that I can vent to. Isn’t it nice to have someone who you can rant to and know that they won’t think differently of you for it? How about knowing you have someone praying for you when you need it? Or a friend who will be honest when your hair color washes you out and you’re jeans make you look great? And of course, it’s great to know you can turn to someone, pour your heart out, and know that anything you tell them won’t be passed on to someone else.

We should always strive to be a good friend, not a mediocre one. We can’t be perfect, but we should try to not be flaky, negative, or distant. Reliable, uplifting, close, and available as much as possible.

What are some ways you can minister to a friend though?

  • Pray: Offer to pray for/with your friend whether it is something small or large. The need for prayer is always there.
  • Offer Help: Sure, you have your own family to tend to… And yes, they should come first. But when you can, help out your friend(s). Maybe they’re sick and need a little help with the kids/house/meals. When a friend has a baby, offer to bring over a meal and hold the baby while they shower or nap.
  • Listen: Sometimes we just need someone to hear us out. Don’t give your opinion or feel as though you need to solve the problem. Just listen.
  • Accept Advice: You know, sometimes I don’t know everything. When someone offers advice, I try not to act like a know-it-all or tell them why I think their idea wouldn’t work. I simply say, whether I like the advice or not, “I’ll keep that in mind!” Sometimes a friend just needs to feel as though they are helping, and by being rude all you are doing is causing confusion. You never know, you may remember what they said for yourself or someone else down the road and be glad you listened.
  • Avoid Being Critical: Depending on the friendship, you may be able to give a close friend constructive criticism. Like I said, and let me highlight: Depending on the friendship! Don’t be mean, negative, or downright inconsiderate. Remember the persons feelings. How would you feel if they did that to you?
  • Apologize: We all make mistakes. Sometimes we do things without realizing it. If you think you may have done something, intentional or not, to offend someone then please tell them you are sorry.
  •  Be There: Do what you say you are going to do when you say you are going to do it. This is a big “ouch” for me, as I’m always having to cancel things for various reasons. I used to never do that! Something to work on!
  • Be A Witness: Invite your friends to join you in church or begin a devotional/Bible study.
  • Make Time: When possible, meet with your friend and spend some quality time together.
  • Don’t Be Sensitive: No one is perfect. Not even your friends. Cut them some slack.
  • Avoid Jealousy: You are not your friend’s only friend. They have other relationships with other people. Don’t be “That Friend” that feels they have to be a part of every. single. thing… Be an individual!!!

Remember, you can’t choose your family… You CAN choose your friends… CHOOSE WISELY!!! Never let anyone walk all over you in the name of “friendship.” Show God’s love, yes. Be a door mat, no.

And now, in honor of Karen and her love for nostalgic television, I leave you with this… Get the cheesecake!

ByKaren

I Wonder Why?

Have you ever wondered why we sometimes say, “Bye Bye” after a conversation? Why say it twice? Doesn’t the one “Bye” get the job done?

Why do some people call a soft drink a “soda” while others call it a “pop”? You also have the ones who call it a “soda pop” and regardless of what kind it is, all of them are to some, “colas”.

Sometimes I feel old before my time. Especially when I sub at the elementary school. I will tell the kids to get ready to go home and get their “book bags” and they look at me like I have 2 heads. They are now, strictly, “back packs”.

Many times I find myself in a rut in a phone conversation, while listening to the other person on the line. This will be my side of the convo: “Oh, really? UmHummm… Yeah… Exactly… I know what you mean…. yeah….. yep, yep…. EXACTLY! … umhumm… I know…. yes…” etc. Why am I at a loss for words?

Why is it that when you load the trash up and take it out, within an hour, the trash can is full again?

Why is it that when you buy your child a pair of shoes that fit perfect when you buy them, and within a couple of weeks, they are too tight for them to wear?

Have you ever wondered why after a month of planning for your child to have a “Toy Story” birthday cake, they suddenly have lost interest and decide that they want “Mario” instead?

Why one day, your child absolutely loves chili and when you make it for them, they refuse to eat it because you ran out of hotdogs.

Why? Some things are because “life happens”. Others, we will never know.

ByAngie

How To Build Your Own Lemonade Stand Step 2: Forgive

14 “For if you forgive men their trespasses, your heavenly Father will also forgive you.15 But if you do not forgive men their trespasses, neither will your Father forgive your trespasses.” Matthew 6:14-15 NKJV

Last week I wrote on grieving. Sometimes, once we have completed that step we realize we need to forgive in order to be able to move on.

I can not stress enough how important this step is. If you simply skip over it, your lemonade will be VERY bitter!

Forgiveness is rarely easy to just hand out. It can be a struggle to let go of anger and hurt that is rightfully felt. Especially if the forgiveness needs to be given to someone who does not care, denies their fault, is unknown, clueless of their action, or did something unbearably horrible.

Something equally difficult is forgiving ourselves. It is often said that we are our own worst critics. Isn’t that the truth? I don’t know anyone who is as hard on me as I am on myself.

Regardless, we are required to forgive if we want to be forgiven. What all does this entail? Well, let’s look at the definition from Webster’s:

Definition of FORGIVE

transitive verb

1a: to give up resentment of or claim to requital for <forgive an insult> b: to grant relief from payment of <forgive a debt>
2: to cease to feel resentment against (an offender) :pardon <forgive one’s enemies>

Do you have to be friends with the person and act like nothing ever happened? Absolutely not! But forgive and move on? Yes.

Easier said than done, right? It usually takes quite a chunk of prayer time to be able to achieve this step. As with all things in life, pray for God to help you. Pray for guidance. Pray for forgiveness from Him. But I guarantee that once you do reach that point, you will feel so much better. Then, you can move right along with making that lemonade!

ByDiania

What’s On My Heart

I simply want to sit down and tell you everything in my life is wonderful, but to do that would be a lie. I feel as tho I am going thru transitions that scare me, ones I can’t control and am not even sure I want to try.

Being the oldest of our four writers you would think I would have a little more insight on how to handle life. But, like everyone else, I stand back fighting depression and decisions that weigh heavy on my heart every day. I know my God won’t put on me more then I can handle, but where exactly is that point, when does one break, or is it even an option?

A couple weeks ago I was talking with an old friend who had a mental break down and had been in the hospital. She seemed a little reluctant to tell me she had a nervous breakdown. I could see the embarrassment in her eyes. Then I started to tell her that a nervous break down is actually just a break thru, and now she could breathe a lot easier because God has lifted the burden and pain from her. I watched as her eyes began to shine, and as she set there for a while I could see her thinking. A few minutes later she began to thank me and said that was a wonderful way to look at it. She seemed to be relieved as I explained to her that she would be able to go on now and leave those burdens completely behind her. When I left her I knew God put me there for a reason. His child was hurting and I left knowing He had used me to help her heal…

So in the mean time I can’t help but wonder just where I will be and who God may use to help me thru what ever it is that holds me from surrendering and breaking thru myself. After all, going thru means I gotta come out on the other end. Your prayers are most welcome..

Love,

ByKaren

And the Best Friend Award Goes To…

While reading the status’s of young pre-teen girls, I find them somewhat humorous and sometimes very irritating. Being the mother of a pre-teen, I get a glimpse of what is going on in their circle of friends. I have found that who ever gives the “invite” of the week is the “bestie” of the moment… In other words, if my daughter invites so and so over for the night, she instantly becomes so and so’s best friend! Just like that. Magical huh?

Some of the same girls will post their ‘best friend’ each day and it’s amazing how different they look from day to day. One of these days, they will learn what a true friend is. I have different levels of friends. While my sister is my best friend and my husband is my best friend, I also have Angie, Lynn, and my mom who are my best friends. They are on different levels because they all offer me a different aspect of friendship. They don’t have to invite me over to spend the night, lol, or give me money, or buy my friendship. It’s offered freely. It’s not a lose, win, what do I have to gain, get me out of the house away from my parents thing. I can tell them anything and they aren’t going to tell everyone else. I can call them for prayer at any hour of the day.

Quality of friendship takes time to build and if your constantly shifting it, it won’t have a chance to grow. I know that you learn these things as you go and as you get older, but if words of advice are heard in advance, it may take them on a shorter detour in life instead of the long way around.

ByAngie

I Won A Prize!!!

In July of 2004, I made friends with a group of people in an IHOP. If you know me, this comes as no surprise. We ended up merging our tables and the other group came and sat with my group. One of these persons is a guy who we will refer to as “Chuck”…

That night was full of fun and laughter. I kept in touch with a few via phone, text, myspace, email, etc. “Chuck” was one of them. A few years later we reacquainted. I was busy with work/life and never thought twice about him. He was dating Julie, who I didn’t know.

Fast forward a few months: “Chuck” is about to leave for deployment (He was a Marine) and wants to meet up, just as friends. Before you know it, “Chuck” and I are dating. Only mentioned an ex-girlfriend a few times. Leaves for Iraq, and while there: rips my heart to shreds. I was left hurt, very confused, and angry. I was determined before that to never fall for anyone again, and I did… only to be let down.

In the time we were dating before he left, I got to know some of his friends. One was his best friend’s girlfriend, Le Anna. When “Chuck” and I broke up, she insisted I come along on a girls night. She brought 2 other girls. Steph and….. Julie, who also brought her now husband. I realized within seconds she was the girl in the pictures with “Chuck” a few months before I started dating him, but we were very cool with each other and quickly became friends. Before the end of the night, she ended up consoling me, and we both insisted we had to remain in contact.

That was almost 5 years ago. Now, I could easily look back on all of that and say “God, why? Why did you allow my heart to be broken?” However, I look at it like this, “God, thank you for the gift of friendship you have given me in these 3 women. Especially Julie. She’s always there right when I need her with a wise word, song lyric, or scripture. It was all worth it to know these girls!”

God knows what he’s doing, people. All the time. Even when we aren’t serving him at the time. And what may seem like something horrible in your midst, never forget that something good can come from it. Even the Bible states this:

And we know that all things work together for good to those who love God, to those who are the called according to His purpose.

Romans 8:28 NKJV

A month after I met Julie, I met and married my husband Bobby who is the love of my life. I could have NEVER imagined that I would ever find someone like him. He is a dream come true and one of the greatest gifts God ever gave me. I quickly forgot about “Chuck”, and still had 3 awesome new friends! A few months later, Julie and Chad were married and remain to be very happy.

You know what that means…

“Chuck” is apparently “Good Luck”… If you’re single and tired of it, I suggest looking him up… Just kidding. Save yourself the trouble, don’t. Just be friends with us instead.