Saturday, March 17, 2018

Chased by goodness and mercy...

Psalm 23 is one of those chapters in the Bible that most everyone has heard at some time or another. Perhaps you've heard the saying, "familiarity breeds contempt"? While our familiarity with this Psalm may not breed contempt it may blind us to some of its powerful truths.

"Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me all the days of my life and I will dwell in the house of the Lord forever" is the most common way we've all heard verse six of Psalm 23.  Recent translations more correctly translate the word follow as pursue.  (Join me for the rest of this post on Sunday, March 18th, at Woman to Woman Ministries where each Sunday I share a bit of Sunday Soul Food!)

still following,

Also happily linking up with the lovely
The Mom Gene

Tuesday, March 13, 2018

Spring branches in bloom...

The spring branches that my neighbor had pruned off of their tree and that I grabbed from their refuge pile to use in an impromptu centerpiece bloomed beautifully over the weekend!
They are so lovely and make me happy each time I look at them.  Unfortunately they are already beginning to wilt a bit so I'll only be able to enjoy them for another day or two.
I'll have to remember and enjoy them through these photos.

 still following,

Flower Friday

Monday, March 12, 2018

It is a good and delightful thing to give thanks to the Lord...

I was wondering today if perhaps there are people out there who read my blog and just assume that I post these weekly gratitude lists because I'm just an upbeat, half glass full type person.  Yes, I'm an optimist, but I too battle days when it would be easier to grumble than to be grateful.  I think that's, unfortunately, a common human condition.  (God showed us that clearly in the book of Exodus-no matter how many miracles God did for them, those people were constantly complaining!) The reason I keep a gratitude journal and post my list here each week is twofold.  First of all, the daily discipline of keeping a gratitude journal is my way to fight that human tendency to grumble and complain.  I want to be a person who's first response is gratitude, not grumbling.  That only happens by making gratitude a habit.  Secondly, I want to publicly give thanks for God's blessings in my life.  He deserves my public praise.
Since 2009 I've been counting my blessings thanks to the prompting of Ann Voskamp.
 I continue to count my thanks
piling up gratitude day by day
in my journal.
(and capturing some of my blessings via my camera or iPhone)

-three year old grandson so excited and sweet to give me a "flower"
-bittersweet-the grandkids back home after four days with us-the house is quiet and clean again
-God's provision-He is always faithful!

-my morning quiet time
-a day of rest after coughing much of the night
-youngest grandson's sweet smile, funny giggles, and chubby baby thighs

-pink sunrise
-"You're my favorite grown-up, Nana!" 
(my three year old's grandson's respond when I tell him he's my favorite three year old)
-lunch and antiquing with a friend
-a new coffee cup

-all of today's to-do list done!
-a walk between rain showers
-branches full of buds that the neighbor pruned off their tree

-a beautiful day for a drive to Kirkland
-our favorite teriyaki eaten by the lake
-a fun Friday date day off and getting out of town

-a slow lazy morning while my husband is at a conference
-God bringing new relationships into our lives
-enjoying a bit of pampering
-the sunset on the drive home
-the branches on our table all in bloom when we got home

-wonderful worship and presence of God
-God is at work in us!
-another sunny, warm day
-more getting rid of excess-so freeing!

still following,

Saturday, March 10, 2018

Valley seasons...

Why is it that sometimes it seems as though winter is twice as long as the other seasons?  There have been years when it felt like spring would never come.  Yet, it inevitably did come.  There's never been a year that winter lasted forever. There's never been a year when spring didn't come.

There are times when a season of waiting on God for an answer to prayer or a season of testing and trial can seem to stretch on forever.  I call them the valley times.  No one chooses or enjoys being in a valley of difficulty but we all will face a valley season at one time or another.

There are two things that have helped me survive the valley seasons in my life.    (Join me for the rest of this post on Sunday, March 11th, at Woman to Woman Ministries where each Sunday I share a bit of Sunday Soul Food!)

still following,

Also happily linking up with the lovely
The Mom Gene

Thursday, March 8, 2018

Friday Favs...Ironstone pedestal bowl and Spring centerpiece

A friend came by for lunch and a bit of antiquing this week and while we were out and about I spotted this pedestal bowl. It was a good price, but I didn't buy it because of my recent efforts to declutter and get rid of excess stuff.  The next day I couldn't get it out of my mind so I went back and bought it.  My goal is that for every new item that comes into my house something must go out.  So, I went though my decor again and actually ended up finding and donating several items that I haven't used in a long time and no longer love. Even though the last time I went through my decor was only a couple of weeks ago, I still found more stuff that I was needlessly holding on to. It feels good to let go and makes me not feel smothered by stuff when I do get something new.
I, of course, had to "play" with my new pedestal bowl when I got it home. I tried a few different arrangements on my table featuring the pedestal bowl, but it wasn't until I noticed that my neighbor had pruned some branches from her flowering tree that it all came together into a spring centerpiece that I love.
 I'm excited to see these branches bloom!

Have a happy Friday
a safe and blessed weekend!



Wednesday, March 7, 2018

Spring buds...

I love the simplicity of taking a little cutting from my backyard and watching the buds open up,
right there on my kitchen counter.
We are only a few days away from daylight savings time beginning and only two weeks away from the first day of spring.
Often, it feels to me like winter drags on forever, but, to me, this year it seems as though it zoomed by.  I'm sure those of you in the parts of our country affected by this newest winter storm don't feel the same.  I hope that you will stay safe and warm and be assured of the hope that spring always comes.

still following,

Flower Friday