Tag Archives: joy

Visual Reminders

6 Jun

For the sake of honesty, I’m going to admit that my mood is easily changed by circumstances. Not always 100% of the time, but frequent enough that I’m able to quickly lose sight of the kind of heart attitude I really long to have, and one that Jesus would desire I live out.

I wrote a post pretty recently about the fruits of the spirit, and how if Jesus is living in me – and He can’t be anything but Holy, good, and faithful to truth, then He will always act on the fruits of the spirit and give me the power to so as well. However, I still have the choice to act in my flesh and reject the power of the Holy Spirit. And sadly, I still do that more than I wish I did.
Even if it’s just in my thought life, and nobody else knows about it.

Things that happen in my life to change my mood are as follows, because maybe you relate to some. (I’ll put the fruit of the spirit I lose in parenthesis.)

– My family members neglect to care about things that are important to me and I start to act unloving (love)

– Plans that we’ve made for our future begin to unravel because of circumstances or finances and I become depressed. (joy)

– What I see in my mind as the best situation for us is NOT the direction I feel like my husband or God is taking us. (peace)

– My kids start acting up and misbehaving and I quickly become impatient and brash with them. (patience)

– I find out someone said something about me that is cruel or untrue and I think or say very unkind things about them in return. (kindness)

– When I’m working on respecting my husband and he says something I feel is unloving or uncaring and I revert to the mindset that he doesn’t deserve me to be respectful or good to him. (goodness)

– When I make a commitment and then realize I really don’t want to do what I agreed to do and try to think of a way out of it. (faithfulness)

– When I’m trying to teach someone something and they just don’t seem to be getting something that should be so easy to get so I start to get irritated and harsh. (gentleness)

– When I know what is right to do, but my flesh demands something else of me that promises immediate gratification or pleasure and I give in. (self-control)

The honest truth is that I WANT to live in the strength that the Holy Spirit provides to live out these fruits.  Nothing about me wants to live in the flesh.  But just having the scripture memorized and desiring to do it hasn’t been enough for me.

So, I’m going to create some visual reminders.  I want to lay my eyes on things that help me stop, take a deep breath, PRAY, and move forward in the right way, instead of throwing it all out the window and following that unhealthy heart attitude that is always there to tempt me.

And now that I have my kids home for the summer, I thought this would be a GREAT thing for them to be apart of too.  I was thinking about something for us to study this summer, and this is going to be it!  We often pray about and talk about the fruits of the spirit, but I think they could use some visual reminders too.

So for the next nine weeks, starting on Monday, we’re going to cover one fruit per week, and see if we can’t get some better habits set in our house and some visual reminders up to help us all out.

Practical Application:

Make some visual reminders – it can be words on a paper, a picture of someone, a scripture, a drawing – ANYTHING that will help us remember the fruit we really want to be pouring from our lives.

Put them in the places you need them.  (For me, I need a patience & gentleness reminder where I do homework with me sons.  And love, kindness, goodness, & self-control reminders in places where I interact with my husband.  As well as a peace reminder taped to my debit card.  And a joy reminder in my purse so whenever I leave the house I can remember to take my attitude of joy along.)

Be faithful and constant to STOP, breath, PRAY and use those reminders to walk in the spirit and NOT in the flesh.

What if ?

21 Apr

Some feelings just can’t be predicted.  I mean, you can have a guess – and your guess may be right; but still sometimes you just have to experience something to really know how you’d feel.

Sometimes I play this “game” with Josh and I say “what if….” and he tries to answer.  No, this is not his favorite game.  But he likes to humor me.  That is, until I ask a question that he can’t get his mind all the way around to answer.  The kind of question where you really and truly just can’t answer until you “have to” because as much as you want to say what you think you’d do, you also doubt in your right mind that you’d really do it.

Questions like, “If the doctor comes out and tells you that you can only save me or the baby, what would you do?”

And yes, I really did ask that question toward the end of the pregnancies of all four of our children.  I wanted to hear his heart on the matter and I wanted him to hear mine.

What’s funny is when you are totally sure without a doubt you can give a rapid fire answer because it’s an easy question and you are positive you know what you’d say, how you’d feel, and what you’d do – and then you shock yourself when the situation happens and you don’t do what you thought you would.

Like when my best friend asked me over a year ago how I’d feel if we ever moved.

I didn’t hesitate to say immediately – “Overjoyed. Ecstatic. Thrilled. Elated.”

She said, “Would you be sad?” I immediately said “No. I mean, we have great memories here, but this house has been such a source of frustration with its size and lack of storage that I’ll be so relieved to get out of here.”

Fast forward to today (which NO ONE would have or could have predicted would be happening) we’ve got boxes EVERYWHERE! We’re moving on Friday.  That’s in 5 days! (Which take note, I probably won’t be posting much this week or next week.  Bare with me!!)

And my emotions are out of control.

I am Overjoyed. Ecstatic. Thrilled. Elated.

I’m also experiencing a great deal of anxieties!  We are going to live on the corner of two really busy roads.  And my kids aren’t use to that.  ESPECIALLY my little two.  And my daughter is at that really fun stage where you call her name to come back to you, and she takes off running faster because she thinks it’s a fun game.

And – we’re going to have a pond.  Totally cool.  Totally TERRIFYING!!!

I’m also experiencing frustration.  The whole loan process, extra surprise expenses, deposits and installation fees are all really getting on my nerves and threatening to steal my joy.

And to my surprise – I am sad.  There are some really fun things we do on our property that have been really special to all of us.  And now they’ll be gone.

We’ll replace those things with new and awesome things – but they will be new things, they will no longer be the same things we’ve come to love.

Practical Application –

Keep playing the “what if” game.  It’s fun.  And it helps you get to know each other.  It really does.

Don’t hold yourself or anyone else to the “what if” game – because there is never a “what if” that won’t be affected by the reality of the situation if it should ever come to pass.

“You never know what you’d do or how strong you are, until you have to walk a road you never knew you would or believed you could.”