Hope

1015OH.

MY.

GAW.

Can you believe it is already 2015!???! Insanity. Pure insanity. I feel like 2014 went both fast and slow at the same time. Have you ever felt that way? There were certain parts that I thought for sure would never end (like having a colicky baby haha) or a whiny 3 year old (well now she can be a whiny 4 year old 😉 but hey, she isn’t 3 anymore! HA!) but then there are parts that seemed to fly by in the blink of an eye, like the super cute 8 month baby stage that I so love, or half of my oldest daughter’s first year of Kindergarten (say what!?) or Christmas (which I am kinda sad about because this year it didn’t ever fully FEEL like Christmas, which is not normal for me).

I hope that all of you had a fabulous Christmas and holiday season with your family. I hope that your children had a good break. Are you happy or sad they are back in school? Or yes to both? HA! 😛

oneI have heard a lot of things over the last few years that instead of making a whole list of new years resolutions, that, let’s be honest, we won’t follow anyway… choose ONE. WORD. to symbolize how you want your year to be. How you want to change. How you want to grow. How you want to live.

What will YOUR one word be? Have you thought about it? What word would you choose that can encompass EVERY.SINGLE.THING. you hope to achieve, accomplish, or do in this year?

I had 2 that I was going back and forth between.

JOY & HOPE

Choosing Joy is something we must actively pursue in order to fulfill anything else in life really. We must CHOOSE to be joyful regardless of circumstances. It is the only true secret to contentment.

“Not that I was ever in need, for I have learned how to be content with whatever I have.” Philippians 4:11

However, I think HOPE is an even MORE all encompassing word. It is through HOPE in Christ that we can have JOY in the first place. 

“The hope of the righteous brings joy…” Proverbs 10:28

Hope is what holds us together when everything is crashing around us.
Hope is what binds people together that may be struggling
Hope is what allows us to trust in our Father even when we don’t understand
Hope is what allows us to have joy
Hope is the catalyst for SO. MANY. THINGS.

We can survive a lot IF we have Hope.

“We have this hope as an anchor for the soul” Hebrews 6:19

And if you are a child of God, you ALWAYS. ALWAYS. ALWAYS. have Hope. Always. No matter what your circumstances. No matter what you are going through. No matter what you are feeling. No matter what you have done. No matter what consequences you may be suffering because of sins. NO. MATTER. WHAT.

Hope is what allowed Jesus’ disciples to be willing to die for their faith. Hope of MORE. Hope of eternal life. Hope that this life on THIS earth is not the end all. It isn’t our real home. Hope that we are made for greatness. Hope that God can, does, and WILL work all things for good for those who love Him (Romans 8:28)

My focus passage for this year will be Romans 12:12

“Rejoice in hope, be patient in tribulation, be constant in prayer.” This passage sums up the word perfectly to me. We can rejoice in all circumstances, if we have hope, even IN tribulations. It is that hope which allows us to trust God and be patient THROUGH those times of tribulation. Constant in prayer is what will allow us the proper focus to remember where our hope lies. It is through constant conversation with God, which is what prayer is, that our minds can stay focused on Him. Focused on Hope. And that Hope will lead to SO. MUCH. MORE.

So this is my one word: HOPE

because with Hope, you can change everything

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resoWHOtions

This time of year I always get a kick out of seeing what peoples New Years Resolutions are. Most go something like this

I want to lose weight
I want to make more money
I want to be happier
I want to be healthier
I want I want I want blah blah blah

Do you notice a common word? I. All of the resoltions are about oneself. Now, before you go wanting to hang me from chandelier, skin me alive thinking I am the devil in sweatpants (yes, sweatpants, I am too poor for prada lol) I am NOT saying that making these kinds of resolutions are bad or wrong. I am not even saying we shoudn’t make some changes. If we were happy staying where we are all the time, that wouldn’t be right either. Some people’s resolutions are fine and dandy and will make you tear up like Free Willy. I am sure some people’s New Years Resolution is to save the Willie’s of the world, ahem, I mean ocean, though I guess techincially the ocean IS part of the world. ok. off track… btw I love whales, sharks, turtles, anything in the ocean 😉 just to clear that up…

What I am getting at is so often we make resolutions and MOST times we don’t keep them or we start of really well, for a month, or 2, 3 if you are lucky, but then they fade away into the background and are forgotten about like a boy band from the 90’s. Also, many times resolutions are very US focused. lose weight, look better, etc… which is fine. I know that some people really do need to get healthy and its ok to set goals for yourself, but sometimes we care WAY too much what our outward appearance looks like and what WE want, rather than seeing what others around us NEED.

I say this year, lets not worry so much about what the scale says, or what our skin looks like, how big a house or car or bank account we have etc….That is something that will fade away over time, and isn’t ours in the first place. However, how we change peoples life can last with them forever, even through eternity. How we treat them, love them, care for them, serve them, encourage them can make a differance more than the next crash diet fad you are using to lose pounds that will probably come back anyway (again, I know some really do work, so please dont come Glee me with your diet smoothies or something)

People are more important than pounds, their life more valuable than the newest model of BMW.  When we are truly changing lives for the Lord, it doesnt’ matter what the outside looks like. If we change the outside of us without changing our hearts, it is meaningless and vain.

I think instead of New Years Resolutions, we need to think of who in our lives needs the love of Christ, the care and compassion he showed. WHO can we love. WHO can we serve. WHO can we help. WHO can we care for. WHO can we encourage. We dont do this by shedding pounds and putting on makeup. We dont do this by pointing fingers, judging and condeming. We do this by sacrifical love, undconditional love. We do this by GETTING TO KNOW people, getting to know the HEART of a person and all this is summed up in to ONE thing….

LOVE LIKE JESUS

so guys. THIS is the ONLY resolution I have. If I follow this, EVERYTHING else will fall into place. If I love like Jesus, I will love others more, seeing their heart, not their “sins” or “flaws”, cause NEWSFLASH!!! you got them too, we all do. If I love like Jesus, I will be a better and more loving wife. If I love like Jesus, I will be more loving, caring and patient mother. If I love like Jesus, I will be more understanding. If I love like Jesus, I will also love myself, therefore strive to be healthy, but be happy with that that means for ME, and accept myself for WHO God made me. If I love like Jesus, I will be exactly what 1 Corinthians 13 describes. People don’t come to Christ because we have pretty outward bodies. People don’t come to Christ through pointed fingers and condeming voices. People come to Christ by loving hearts, serving hands, and genuine care and concern for them and their lives.

no weight loss diet

Sometimes, it is hard to know what to write about in my blog.  Having a loss of words is NOT something I am normally known for, just ask my husband! HAHA. Again, it has been a long time since I have written a new blog post. I REALLY should set up an alarm on my computer or something every other day so I remember to write! LOL! it is ridiculous! I swear having a baby eats your brain cells! 🙂 BUT, I want another, hehehehe. Andrew and I are starting to talk about when to start trying for baby two! I am soooo excited!  God has blessed us so much with Katie and I am looking forward to her being a big sister one day. I know God has the perfect sibling picker out for her already, and the perfect timing for him/her to arrive! I can’t wait! for this blog, I am going to ask a question. it is a new year. . .what are some of your plans for this year? What are some thigns you want to change? What are some things that you want God to help you learn and grow in? For me. . .

1) more trust, less worry and fear
2) learn to love without being afraid to lose
3) take every moment for what it is and don’t think about the next moment, until it  happens
4) ENJOY life more!
5) learn to share Christ’s love with others more and NOT be afraid of rejection, remember christ faced rejection! He really DOES understand and he IS with me!
6) Remember that God loves me UNCONDITIONALLY
7) have more faith in others
8) have more faith in myself
9) stop worrying so much about the OUTSIDE and work on the INSIDE
10) DON’T WORRY ABOUT TOMORROW!!!!
11) Work hard and reach some dreams God has placed in my heart
12) Help other women know they are beautiful and loved

these are just some of what my heart desires for 2010. I know with Christ, I can do all things, actually ONLY with Christ can I accomplish ANY of these. Without him I am nothing. I am so thankful for my Lord and what he did for me, that he died for me. Some days I tend to forget all he went through for me, I take it for grantid. I pray that THIS year, I don’t ever forget it. I think if I only rememberd, my life would look TOTALLY differant. I want to look differant this year! I am not talking about dieting in the sense of losing PHYSICAL weight, but dieting losing excess baggage, sin, worries, fears, anxieties, all that junk!! I want to go on a diet! 🙂 Who is with me!?

Another Christmas past

it is so wierd that yet another Christmas has come and gone, isn’t it? We had a great one though! This was the first year we did not travel for either holiday, and while we missed family, it really was a nice break and wonderful to be able to enjoy it in our own home as our little family. most of the snow was still on the ground, so it was a BEAUTIFUL christmas! Of course, it started raining the yucky kind of rain Christmas night, but  the day was gorgeous! We were very blessed by our new friends and family in Christ from our church, yet again. We enjoyed wonderful food, friends, laughter, and made new memories for our lives here in Towson. It was great! Those are the best kind of presents! The kind that don’t wear out, you can’t use up, they cannot be taken from you, they cannot be destroyed, they won’t ever leave. Memories really do make the best gifts, and we made MANY gifts this Christmas 🙂 I hope you and your families enjoyed a wonderful holiday as well! now, let’s all look forward to another new year! WOW, 2010. THAT IS NUTS! What are YOUR resoultions this year?

I know mine is to continue trusting more and worrying less. Sadly, i think this will ALWAYS be one, because it is the one I struggle with the most. another would be to not FREAK OUT just because our “schedule” is not exactly the same every day! HAHA! with kids, I know, I know, that rarely happens 🙂

God is awesome, let us continue to remember that this new year! GOD BLESS!