Monday, November 3, 2014

What Fills Me Up

After sharing about the state of our home, the dog incident involving my favorite shoes and posting a real-life picture of a currently happening fly strip, which had to remove on that same Monday because my grandsons found them to be extremely intriguing, with all their sticky gross-ness –well- I thought maybe it was time to give up writing if that is all I have to write about.


However, that is life and my real life right-now and still and on-going. And from the slow grinding progress going on with the reconstruction, it may be my life for some time to come.

And since I fight the pull of being worn thin just like you do friends, I thought this may be a good week to share with you some of the places I get filled up. 

I was reminded that much of what fills me up in a normal day isn't what you might think. Even though I am a girl with multiple e-mail accounts, Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Google, and pinterest-y loves. Yes, in the on-line world I belong to a variety of communities. Some are to encourage one another and some I write for. And then there is this space where I wander around and share words filtered through my heart. Thank-you for the grace and the love and for making this space part of what you do every week. 

Surprisingly, in a normal week I spend a lot of time alone to have something to give away. So can I remove any misconception for you? 

This is where I read, pray, get quiet.

In the summer the window is open and in the winter I have my favorite blanket. Consistently this is where I need to be, to spend time with the Lord. If you ever wonder why I do what I do, can I just tell you? I serve a God that is amazing. Not just some abstract God of anyone's imagination, but the God of the Universe. The Lord Jesus who reached down and drew me from the deepest pit and redeemed my life. I certainly don't have it all figured out, but what I do, I do for Him. I live to bring glory to His Name. His Kingdom is what I care about, not my own. 

So I come here, read His Word, seek His guidance and strive to walk out my days, for His glory.

Behind that green curtain, which matches nothing in this room, is a window that has been stripped and is waiting to be dry-walled over. There is a story there, but mostly you need to know that it's hiding a project that will probably be one of the last things to be addressed in our reconstruction. Still, this is where I write. It is my happy space.

I've had a lot of crazy jobs in my life. I have dug ditches, operated heavy equipment, farmed, ranched, worked as a switchman on the railroad, spent some years loading luggage and bringing in airplanes at a small local airline and perhaps my favorite, served up coffee as a barista.

Some of that stuff, you just never get out of you. Thank goodness! Good coffee is one of those things. If you ever want to make may day, a skinny latte will do it. I try to drink glasses of water, but my world is fueled by a considerable amount of coffee.

My neighbor Lynette has been very influential these past months. She has pushed my sorry excuses aside and got me out walking first thing in the morning. I have honestly not been the most willing woman to exercise, but she has kept me accountable and motivated. It has resulted in a better morning routine. I've lost some weight. I've gotten closer to my neighbor. Can someone sing Alleluia?

My friends Lorre and Amanda co-lead a women's Bible Study with me. It is hard and good and a complete highlight of my week to have them be for me and with me on a regular basis. I'm not sure how the Lord will use it in eternity, but I know He is reshaping my heart at the very least. Right now we are about to finish the study of Joshua and Caleb called One In A Million, by Priscilla Shirer. Yes! I want to have that kind of faith.

My church. One of the greatest blessings in my daily life is being part of a community of people who are on fire for Jesus. It is beautiful, refreshing, and life giving. All are welcome.

My family. My husband is one of my most cherished gifts in all of this life. To share my days with him... well it is a real-life love story and God-story. I am crazy about him. C-r-a-z-y. I am deeply known by him and still he loves me. He loves Jesus. He lives without pretense, send texts with emoticons and likes to clean house. Our children are amazing people. Not for what they do, but because of who they are. And our seven grandchildren all under the age of six years old, astound me. They require a lot of energy, but they feed my soul and give me endless reasons for joy and to be a woman of prayer. I cannot get over how much life they bring to my soul.

And then there is the deep well of the internet. I adore places that speak life, energy and refreshment. Honestly I don't have time for much else. I cannot read every post, every tweet, every facebook update, but when I do spend time on the internet I want to walk away ready to do more of what I love in my real-life. So I like blogs that teach how to love Jesus, our husbands, our children. On-lines spaces that encourages us to build up our homes and our faith. Spaces that offer information on how to keep the important stuff first and let go of the other things that keep us from the main things and how to discern the difference.

There are so many, that I do not intend to leave anyone out. This is my short list of places that get me filled up. I hope you will check them out.

Lara Casey: This woman knows what her life is about. She is at the top of her game and doing it all for Jesus. I've started using her Power Sheets. It has changed me. Not so I can do more, though there is that, but mostly so I do what is really important. And what is important is to live on purpose, the only purpose that matters is Jesus. -Thank you.

Denise J Hughes: This woman is one of the most gifted writers and deeply kind women I have had the honor of meeting in real life and hanging out in the virtual world with. She is the visionary behind Deeper Waters which is a beautiful place to hang out friends. So much to choose from in the way of encouragement and she is planning an ocean-side retreat this coming June. I'm going and would love to see you there!

Susie Larson: I love her heart! Her book, Your Beautiful Purpose has shifted my thinking. It has settled my heart into this season of life and what the Lord has for me to do right now. What she speaks is still filling me up to wholeness.

Elizabeth Stewart: Her blog is called Just Following Jesus and that is what she does everyday. Elizabeth has been blogging five days a week every since 2009. Hello amazing! Her blog home is packed with good stuff. I've met her in real life, but weekly I go to her on-line kitchen or sit in her on-line overstuffed chair and feel at home. She and I will be rooming together this coming spring at Jumping Tandem the Retreat.  I know you will love her like I do.  This is one example of what this girls shares that makes me happy. 

There is much more. Like here, here and here.  In my real everyday life,  I have so many women that the Lord seems to send at just the right time with a comment, text, act of kindness, a note on my windshield, a coffee or who mix up a special bottle of oils to indulge my skin with, while I take a hot bath.

You all know who you are and I love you, each and every one.

You are all threads in my story and life. There are so many facets of life and time. So many priorities and areas of interest. You, yes you reading..... you make my world smaller and bigger. You help me be more of who I was intended to be and I hope it works the other way as well.

And this last week I have seen it happen over and over again. Being filled up, encouraged and loved so many places, as only the Lord can.  And the reminder that what I do here is to send out encouragement and love for whoever the Lord is sending it to.

So, what do you do when you need refreshment, encouragement, and energy to keep pressing into life and the responsibilities we each have? 

What kinds of little things help you in a big way in your day?


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© Rhonda Quaney