The Journey is…just one of THOSE days!

I heard this song last night & it reminded me of this blog I began around Thanksgiving Day, but never finished.  I came home & finished it last night & I would like to share it today, on this Thankful Thursday:

Have you ever had one of THOSE days!?!  In this case…it’s one of those days where you KNOW God is working in your life.  He directs your steps & YOU really can hear from God!

Well…yesterday was “just one of THOSE days”. 🙂

I am so thankful & would like to share it with you.

I was listening to the radio after dropping the girls off at school & had the thought…”You should put one of those praise & worship CD’s in that Matt made you a long time ago.”  I really didn’t want to, but when the thought didn’t go away I decided to anyway.  I just reached in the console & pulled out a random CD & popped it in.  It only had 3 songs on it, but two of them were some of my favorites!  “Your Love is Unconditional” & “When I Think about the Lord”, both by Christ for the Nations.  When the second song played it just got stuck in my spirit.  I played it the rest of the way home.  In fact, I played it ALL DAY long!  When Emily got home from school I was still playing it, and kept saying “I’m just going to play it one more time”.  She caught me later STILL playing it, BUT I had turned it down very low so not to annoy her.  This is the song:

That evening we had a special Thanksgiving service at church.  Of course I snuck my song in a few more times on the drive there.  Emily just smiled & shook her head at me.  As praise & worship began the words to the song flashed on the screen at the front of the sanctuary.  Emily said, “Oh my goodness…I think I just saw the words to your song!”  I laughed and said, “I doubt it!”  Well…it WAS!  Not only that, after we sang it once…they decided to sing it AGAIN!!!

That is all I had written.  Here is the rest of the story:

Being a special Thanksgiving service, the rest of the evening was spent with people sharing what they were Thankful for.  As each person took their turn, it quickly turned into an evening of people sharing their personal testimony, of how the Lord did just what the words of the song stated.  “How He picked me up and turned me around How He placed my feet, on solid ground…”

WOW.  It was a beautiful time of remembering the faithfulness of God to each of us.  There were stories of VICTORY over alcoholism, abuse, lack, job situations, expectations of others, great loss…many things we didn’t know about each other.  Different situations, same devil.  Same feelings of utter hopelesness.  Same God who restores(just as if I’d never missed it), fills us(with His presence, peace, love), heals us(to the uttermost…even better than our own dreams for our lives)!  It was a blessing to us to reflect, and in turn gave hope to those currently in those situations who thought they were alone in their struggles.

Then there was that couple who’s testimony I’ll never forget.  I should have written my thoughts that night, but this is the best I can remember.

The wife:

She was thankful to be part of a crying church.  A place where it is common to see people cry.  In some places of worship, people might think there is something terribly wrong.  At our church, it most likely means the Lord is really working & blessing you.  She said there was a time about 8 years ago when all she could do was come to church & cry.  Not because she felt the presence of the Lord…but just because that’s where she was in life.  AND SHE WAS THE YOUTH PASTOR’S WIFE!  It truly was a “sacrifice of praise”.  To make herself utter the words of praise, when all her senses told her not to.  She thought it was pointless….a feeling of hopelesness.

She was thankful that the Lord loved her & as she allowed Him to…in his sometimes unusual & creative ways…the Lord was faithful to wake her up & bring her out of the darkness.  All these years later, as she stood in the back of the church the last week…doing a job she DOESN’T LIKE, but KNOWS it’s importance(greeting people as they come in the door)…she was able to witness a beautiful sight.  Her church family praising the Lord from the heart…each in their own way.

As she stood there, she realized the Lord had replaced the heaviness with HIS joy & she was able to enter into praise with a happy heart.  Her point?  Keep doing what God is telling you, what you know is right, even when you don’t feel it.  You do your part, God does the rest.  He is faithful.

The husband:

There was a time when he had experienced great loss.  Some from his own poor choices, some from things beyond his control.  The whole time he was serving the Lord & doing what He thought the Lord was leading him to do.  He felt that he had let his wife, kids & GOD down.  The devil tried to tell him he was a failure & just to end it all…that everyone would be better off without him.

God sent a missionary to his church, who simply said something like this(the Julia translation), “You are God’s son, He loves you & there is nothing you have to DO to be well pleasing to him.  You please him, just because you are his kid.”  The husband’s message that night was, “Don’t quit.  Don’t listen to the lies from the devil.  What does God’s Word say about you & your situation?  That can be the only standard for your life.  God says you are a winner!”  He went on to say, that as he continued to follow God, the Lord has & is restoring what the devil stole.  While it wasn’t/isn’t always easy or fun…You do your part, God does the rest.  He is faithful.

Of course, I’ll never forget that couples testimony, because it was mine & Matt’s.

Many times in life the devil would have us to believe it’s the end & leave us in utter hopelesness.  I marvel at the extreme measures the Lord goes through to help us all, His children.  I am so thankful for the people, places & events that He puts in our paths to encourage us in our journey…but that’s a whole other blog!

The devil is a liar, pants on fire….

GOD IS FAITHFUL!  There’s so much more!  God always has a “NEXT” for you. 

Don’t forget it!

….and I’m thankful that I had “Just one of THOSE days!”  I love it when God does things like that, don’t you?

From my heart, filled with love & thankfulness….

~Julia

“Now to him who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to his power that is at work within us, to him be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus throughout all generations, for ever and ever! Amen.” -Ephesians 3:20-21



“When I think about the Lord, How He saved me, How He raised me

How He filled me, With the Holy Ghost How He healed me, to the utter most

When I think about the Lord,

How He picked me up and turned me around

How He placed my feet, on solid ground

It makes me wanna shout Hallelujah, Thank you Jesus

Lord You’re worthy Of all the Glory, and all the Honor And all the praise”

Advertisements

The Journey is…your choice.

thankful thursday…Happy New Year?

 No ball drop,

no count down,

no “Auld Lang Syne”

nothing

just me aggravating my family because they couldn’t wake me.

Seriously…WHO ACCIDENTALY SLEEPS THROUGH NEW YEARS!?!

I’m thankful that even if I missed the festivities….it truly has no bearing on my futureNothing magically transforms our lives at the stroke of midnight, propelling us to our destiny.  Each day we awake is a day of new opportunities.

Your future = your choice

each & every day of the year.

The Journey is…LOVE, RESPECT &….cell phones?

It’s true!  People CAN change if they want to!

After YEARS of frustrating my loved ones….I’m proud to say that for 3 weeks now I have(with very few exceptions) kept my cell phone charged, the volume TURNED UP, and with me at all times….and I’ve even answered it when I didn’t recognize the number!  Simple right?  For YOU MAYBE!  But for me, this is a major accomplishment!  I’m proud of myself.  I don’t imagine anyone else cares or has noticed, but it makes me happy.  YAY ME!

Have I enjoyed changing?  NO!  It’s been quite a bother to constantly think about it, keep up with it…and even answer it.  I really DON’T like to talk on the phone!

I’m sure my friends & family don’t see it this way, they loved me despite my “cell phone flaws”, but this my why.  The reason why I made the effort to change.

It’s one way I’m letting them know, “I value you.  I respect your time.  You are more valuable to me than my comfort.  I love you.”

What did this simple example remind me of?

“When we value & respect what we already have

…a whole world of opportunities open.”

I find this principle to be true in MANY areas of my own life.

But, back to the phone…See, I used to joke about wanting an i-phone….but when presented with the opportunity to get one, I would always decline.  My thoughts? It was too expensive a gift for me to damage.  If I wasn’t going to keep it charged, use it correctly or possibly lose or break it…what was the point in acquiring it?  I might as well keep the old free one.

When I valued and respected the people in my life enough to take care of the phone I already have…my thinking began to change.  I’m now thinking…an i-phone might be nice to have after all!

I know it’s just a phone, but it makes me think this…What simple changes can we make daily that will add value to people.  What do I already have in my power that will tell those I love that they are important to me?  What has the Lord already blessed me with for which I can respect & show my gratitude?  In what ways is He wanting to enlarge my thinking?

When you can answer that, then it’s really very simple.  (Keeping this in mind…simple is not equal to EASY.)  Embrace your NOW, find your WHY, make a plan & follow through.  Change is good.  I think you’ll be pleasantly surprised to see the worlds of opportunities it opens up for you NEXT!

Your future is bright!  Embrace it!  Enjoy it!  Live it!

~Julia

The Journey is….dark.

This question was asked on one of my favorite FB pages called, “I want an awesome marriage.” https://www.facebook.com/awesomemarriage/posts/230843610300796#!/awesomemarriage

“What has been the ‘darkest’ time in your marriage? What did you learn from that experience?”

This was my response:

When everything we had dreamed & worked for fell apart.  We also went from spending almost every moment together, to rarely seeing each other at all…unless we were sleeping.  Along with the other losses,  I felt that I had lost my best friend.  It was a “dark” time…I was quite bitter, headed towards depression….
I learned that…sitting in my bitterness for years did nothing but make the devil happy.  I learned that life isn’t always fair…grieve the loss(es)…and then move forward despite your feelings.  I learned that taking baby steps following the Lord’s leading, will ultimately take you to success…although it may not be what you had dreamed of originally.  I learned that life is full of changes & stages…the Lord IS faithful!  It WILL get better.  Never give up….never quit on each other!
…and one of the greatest lessons I have learned is…
Fighting, not against each other, but standing together fighting through those times of struggle makes your love story deeper, richer & even more meaningful.
It’s all part of the Journey!
…..and I learned that my husband is an incredibly strong man…I am thankful.

The Journey is…embarrasing.

GET HAPPY OR GO TO BED (THANKFUL THURSDAY….on Wednesday…)

RUN. WORK. BALL GAME. RUN. WORK. GROCERY STORE. CHURCH. RUN. WORK. BALL GAME.

*Grumpy face*

“Great.  Tomorrow’s Thursday…now I have to think of something to be thankful for….”

hmmmmm…..don’t think I was well pleasing to my Lord today.
My attitude…MY CHOICE.  At the Davis’ home, bad attitudes are not allowed…seriously…not tolerated.  If you’re going to choose to be grumpy, then you’re choosing to go to your room.  So…put on a happy face, or go to bed.

So…as much as I might like to stay in my room today….I have too much to do.  So here’s my attitude adjustment:

I am thankful for the little things that make up my daily life.

RUN.  Thank you Lord for….the cooler weather…running has been a pleasure this week.

WORK.  Thank you Lord for….Money that we earned to pay for groceries.  We were able to go on vacation this year without putting a strain on our budget…first time ever.  Customers & the opportunity to be a light in their world.  Dedicated employees.  Wisdom to know the next step, courage to step out & do it.  New product ideas.  A growing, successful company.   Hard working husband, dedicated to his family & the dream the Lord has put in his heart.

BALLGAMES. Thank you Lord for….Smiles on my girls face & her teamates…as they WON their game!  Enjoying the great attitudes & teamwork that they displayed, and the life lesson they have learned.   Being a young team the last few years, they have now learned the REWARDS of hard work, even through some tough & dissapointing learning seasons in the past.  They look great out on the court this year.  I am excited for them!

CHURCH.  Thank you Lord for…the gift of your life that lives and dwells in our Spirits. Your WORD that is powerful, freeing the captive. The opportunity to worship, learn, grow & give with family & friends.  Pre-schooler’s to teach that say the funniest things…not to mention this fact….they give THE BEST hugs ever!

….and….

-Friends that write blogs encouraging us to be Thankful.  Thanks Mrs. Tricia!  I appreciate you!  http://twotiarasandasword.blogspot.com/2011/08/thankful-thursday_11.html?spref=fb

 It’s actually embarrasing to think about my ungratefulness.  You just can’t stay grumpy, when you start thinking about HIS GOODNESS!!!

The Journey is….FOCUS

SATISFACTION part 2

Time to get focused.  My Goals for the Vulcan Run 2011 ~ 6.2 miles  http://vulcanrun.com/

Goals:

-Loose 20 lbs by race day, Nov. 5, 2011.  I have lost 2 so far…only 18 to go.  The first thing I see when looking at this year’s race pictures will not be my “mom” stomach.  I have 12 weeks left…I will loose at least 1.5 lbs per week.

-Finish in under 1 hour.  (Last year’s time was 1:06:49  /  10.46 pace)  My pace will be under 10 minutes per mile.

-Beat my family (even Emily)  😉

Plan:

-Wise, healthy food choices.  Portion control.  Cut out the junk food….remembering that I love ME, more than the unhealthy food(or a camera)  Click here for an explanation about the camera:  The Journey is Inspiration

-Training:  http://www.halhigdon.com/10ktraining/10kinter.htm

– I don’t really care if I beat my family, but it is fun trying.

Last years race pictures (you have to have a Facebook account to view these pics)SATISFACTION part 1 ~ The Vulcan Run 2010

The path to the Vulcan 2010 (my first 10k journal)

 

Success is peace of mind which is a direct result of self-satisfaction in knowing you did your best to become the best you are capable of becoming. ~John Wooden
‎Running is a big question mark that’s there each and every day. It asks you, ‘Are you going to be a wimp or are you going to be strong today?’ -Peter Maher

The Journey is…Random Running Thoughts

Random thoughts about running(and life) that are racing through my brain…

-When you accomplish your goal & finish a race…you must always have a NEXT in mind.  Otherwise the exhilaration & feeling of accomplishment lends itself to emptiness & lack of motivation.  It would be easy to fall back to square one.

-After last weeks 5k(where my family all ran together)…no one has wanted to run w/me all week!!!  But, I understand…I felt the same way after my first 3 races.  The Lord always sent me some form of encouragement to keep going forward.

-Even when you don’t feel it…take the next step anyway.  Feelings come & go…right choices ultimately take you where you want to be.  I enjoyed having Matt back on the track with me this morning!

-Every race, even if it’s not pretty (ie~my Talladega run)…has it’s own unique triumphs, struggles & meaning.

-Can’t get MILE ELEVEN at the Talladega out of my head.  At a point in life that I had never been past…never ran more than 11 miles at one time(a half marathon is 13.1 miles)…the Lord gave me this song on my i-pod, it started playing exactly as I passed the 11 mile marker.  That moment changed my life.  I am still not able to comprehend completely all that moment meant to me.  That song summarizes my life & my relationship with the Lord.  I now listen to it every time that I run.

I’m sure that I’ll dedicate a blog to each topic someday….but for now…maybe my mind can rest…

The Journey is…Inspiration

“Find your why…and then live your choice with passion.”

For the last 3 weeks I have been attempting to blog about the things that inspire me to move….mainly…the things that inspire me to run.

It starts out nice enough, it goes something like this:

in·spire [ in spir ]
  1. stimulate somebody to do something: to encourage somebody to greater
    effort, enthusiasm, or creativity
  2. provoke particular feeling: to arouse a particular feeling in somebody
  3. cause creative activity: to stimulate somebody to do something,
    especially creative or artistic work

I have found that there are things in life that inspire me to action.  They inspire me to get out of my comfort zone & change my normal pattern of behavior….typically for the better.

For example:  Stepping on a mouse trap, inspires me to jump around, screaming like a mad woman 🙂  Completely out of character for me…but evidently, from the reaction of my children) quite funny to watch.

I’m fine by the way….


Well, the rest of that blog isn’t coming together.  My thoughts typically are a jumbled up mess in my head, until I sit down & type them out.  This time, they are just staying there…tangled up in my brain.

But during the process, it caused me to contemplate what would inspire me to change my eating habits.  What would make me WANT to do this…because so far, the WANT to eat junk has been greater than the WANT to loose weight.  With very little thought I came up with my answer.  A new camera!  My old one died….on the first day of our family vacation mind you!  I’ll just say…I was very sad.  If you know me well, this would make sense.  If not…you might think I’m a nut.  If someone offered to buy me the camera of my dreams, along with lenses & flashes, etc…if I ate healthy for  xxx # of days…I would without a doubt, have the will power to resist every sweet thing that was offered to me DAILY!  It does seem that everywhere I go there is some kind of delicious food tempting me.  You see…I would then have a “WHY”.  Why would I not eat that?  Because if I made the right choice…I could have the amazing piece of technology to record precious moments of life that will never happen again.  Photographs for us to cherish FOREVER…or at least until Jesus comes back….

Then I think…that’s pitiful.  Is not my own body…my own health & quality of living more important to me than a camera, an object?  So now…every time I think about the food…I think about the camera & MY value…yes…I AM more valuable to myself than a camera.

So here’s to W1D2 (week 1/day 2)!  TWO days of eating healthy(again, for the zillionth time)!!!  YAY ME!!!!

I believe with anything that you value in life, you must find your inspiration.  What is your reason or purpose for doing something…your WHY?  Find your why…and then live your choice with passion.

~Julia

The Journey is…addicting

RUN “GRUMPY”!

I have a confession to make….You would think that with all the victory I have experienced this past year…I would just jump out of bed every morning…anticipating the morning’s run.

Instead, my first thought is…..”I don’t like to run.”    Most days I don’t even want to run.  I even get grumpy at the mere thought of having to run.

So why do I run?

When I make myself run “grumpy”, I feel:

-like a winner…I win over myself, my excuses, my flesh.

-in chargeIn the life I have happily chosen, I am often pulled 15 different directions…attempting to make everyone elses life the best it can be.   At times things feel quite out of my control.   When running….I choose if I’m going to run, where I’m going, how long I run, which direction to go, what to listen to, which races to enter.

-alone…I cherish rare quiet moments.  Even when running with a partner or during a race with thousands of people…somehow…I still feel alone, and I like it.

-loved…God speaks to my spirit & ministers to my life the most when I run.  I’m sure that’s why He tried to get me to start for all those years.

I have found that…”grumpy” always, without fail, turns into “happy”!  Satisfied.

I do have a theory…the more I choose to listen to my Spirit, my flesh will fall into submission.  I believe the day will come that I will wake up…excited about lacing up my shoes!

There was a short time in my life where I felt accustomed to losing.  Running makes me feel like the winner that God created us all to be…and I like that!

I like it a lot…You might even say I’m becoming addicted to winning!

The Journey is…Simple

As a Christian…all my life’s decisions simply boil down to this one thought:

“IF I DO THAT, WILL MY CHOICES BRING ME & THOSE I LOVE CLOSER TO THE LORD?”

Now that’s a simple thought.

It’s my choice:

If I continue to eat every snack cake in the cabinet…does that show my kids that the Lord helps us do hard things? Yes….at this moment in my life…I consider self control & my food choices a hard thing 🙂

If I react to life with worry or fear…is that proving my complete trust in the Lord who perfects those things that concern me?

If I let those words come out of my mouth…are they going to minister grace to the hearer?  Am I being a living example of the Love of God?

If the Lord leads me to do something (as in RUN)…and I keep making excuses….nobody benefits.  The people that the Lord intended to be ministered to, including myself, are not drawn closer to the Lord through the life I am living.

Do my actions backup my beliefs?   My choices must line up with God’s Word…if they do…we will all be drawn closer to our God who loves us!  He gives us the POWER to put action to our beliefs!  SIMPLE!

Deuteronomy 30:19-20

“…I have set before you life and death, blessing and cursing; therefore choose life, that both you and your descendants may live; that you may love the LORD your God, that you may obey His voice, and that you may cling  to Him, for He is your life and the length of your days”