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Christmas cranky

Christmas brings out the best & the worst in us.  We tend to be more generous & compassionate but at the same time more impatient and cranky.  Christmas motivates us to see the needs of people around us, like Saving Moses, but because of the increased pressure & work that can come with this season, we can also be more self-centered and less flexible.  In the next few weeks, I’m planning to do some really practical & honest blogs about dealing with Christmas.  Below are a few ideas about handling cranky people in the Christmas season:

  • remember that Christmas isn’t an easy season for many people to navigate (deaths in family, difficult memories, loneliness, financial pressures, etc)
  • if someone is cranky, don’t let their behavior & attitude infect your words or attitude
  • plan ahead to be extra patient, gracious & kind (pre-planning our attitudes is a great tool to have available when the need arises)
  • gain satisfaction from being generous & kind, not from the person’s reaction (internal versus external fulfillment)
  • keep Jesus at the center – full stop.
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Posted by sarahbowling in busy, Christmas, enemies to intimacy, Genuine love, grow, Holy Spirit, listen, living, prayer, relationships, saving moses, seeing Jesus, values, 0 comments

making faith effective

In the Bible, there are all kinds of things that happened because of faith (blind eyes healed, miracle provisions, raising the dead, family restoration, giant killing, etc).  Whenever I read Hebrews 11, I’m always really stirred up and motivated in my faith because the chicks & dudes in this chapter are AMAZING!!!  But here’s a simple essential to make our faith effective:  genuine love.

In Galatians 5:6, Paul says that faith works by love.  So whenever I’m not seeing the results of faith in my life, the real question doesn’t always rest on the quality / quantity of my faith, but moreso the reality of my genuine love.  Perhaps the evidence of our faith is directly related to the sincerity of our love 🙂

#somethingtoconsider

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Posted by sarahbowling in busy, enemies to intimacy, grow, Holy Spirit, living, prayer, relationships, saving moses, seeing Jesus, values, 0 comments

turkey update

Happy post Thanksgiving! I hope your day went well, with lots of peace, joy and enjoyable food 🙂  A few days ago, I posted about how I don’t really care for cooking turkey because of the litany of failed attempts my family has endured over many years.  Well, I’m happy to report that yesterday’s turkey was totally tasty!  It wasn’t burned, not too dry, not undercooked nor any of the other ways that I’ve ruined turkeys over many years – yahoo!!!

So here’s some encouragement.  Think of something that you’ve been trying to get good at for a long time, then consider a few things:

  • perhaps the lessons you’ve learned from the failures just helped you to understand better what doesn’t work
  • be thankful that you don’t have to make the same list of mistakes – you can make new ones
  • perhaps you next attempt will be the one that brings you success
  • if you next attempt doesn’t succeed consider that you’re one step further from failure & closer to success 🙂

 

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Posted by sarahbowling in cooking, family, fasting, grow, Holy Spirit, listen, living, prayer, values, 1 comment

Attitude Effects Altitude

If the truth be known, I have to really mind my attitude in the holiday season. Unfortunately, I find it easy to get cranky, impatient & snarky. I tend to try & justify this stuff saying I’m tired, I have lots of extra work, etc. But I want to do better this year & I want to manage my attitude more than letting it manage me. For me, the best way to accomplish this is to ask God for help as frequently as possible, along w memorizing a few Bible verses. Attitude affects altitude 🙂

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Posted by sarahbowling in busy, Christmas, family, Genuine love, grow, Holy Spirit, listen, living, Martha, prayer, saving moses, seeing Jesus, spiritual, values, 2 comments

cooking turkey

With Thanksgiving  popping up in less than 48 hours, I am facing my age-old nemesis, the turkey.  I think that I’ve figured out almost every way to ruin a turkey (undercooking, overcooking, offering a burnt sacrifice, along with many other accidents).  So I’m totally keen to throw in a lasagna & call it good 🙂

But alas, I will do the traditional turkey & there’s a good chance that I’ll get it right this year – hope springs eternal.  And this is exactly my point:  hope springs eternal.  Just because I’ve had a litany of turkey traumas doesn’t mean that this year is going to be another “challenge.”  After a 1,000 failed attempts with his light bulb invention, Thomas Edison said, “I have not failed.  I’ve just found 10,000 ways that won’t work.”

Happy Turkey Day! 🙂

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Posted by sarahbowling in cooking, family, fasting, Genuine love, grow, Holy Spirit, living, 2 comments

all of you is meaningful :)

Unimportant, irrelevant, insignificant and altogether meaningless.  Sometimes I have conversations and interactions with people where I try to figure out where we might have some common ground and find something about which we can both enjoy discussing.  When I talk with my friends whose kids attend the same school with my kids, we often find the common ground related to school stuff.  When I’m speaking in a church or at a conference and connecting with people in these environments, we often talk about God and the Bible.  But not everyone wants to talk about school stuff, or Bible stuff, knitting, or how to get in better shape, snowboarding, or Soren Kierkegaard or God or prostitutes having babies that need safety and protection,  . . . .   We all have things that we are passionate about that aren’t interesting or meaningful to other people.  But here’s the totally cool piece:

All of you is meaningful to God.  God is altogether interested in your life and everything in which you’re interested.  God has the capacity to be fully engaged, interested and participatory in every area and interest of your life!  All of you is meaningful!!

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Posted by sarahbowling in busy, Cambodia, cooking, enemies to intimacy, family, Genuine love, grow, Holy Spirit, listen, living, nightcare, prayer, relationships, saving moses, seeing Jesus, spiritual, values, watch, 0 comments

A Helpful Trick

The other day, I received some really bad news & it was very discouraging & rather disheartening. It was interesting to watch my reaction because I did something kind of absent-mindedly that I would not have normally done. I started to remember things during the day for which I was thankful. I started thanking God for getting the kids to school on time. I thanked God for helping me to not be rude to someone who had said something hateful to me. I thanked God for getting to eat lunch at home & for the nice coffee there. I started to thank God for all kinds of things & shortly thereafter, rather than being depressed about the negative news that I had received, my heart was lots more encouraged, lite & even loving.
Being thankful is a helpful lifestyle & not merely a seasonal celebration 🙂

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Posted by sarahbowling in family, grow, Holy Spirit, listen, living, prayer, seeing Jesus, spiritual, values, 4 comments

“SHOOT THE BALL!!!”

I went to my daughters basketball game & embarrassed myself pretty well. Thankfully, my daughter isn’t stressed out & she enjoyed getting to play & have some fun with her team, which is great. In the meantime, I need help. I need to get some help on how to enjoy her games without getting so massively competitive. Of course I want to attend her games & of course I don’t want to be that freak parent who can’t control themselves. So I’m working with God in this new area. I’m asking for God to give me help, self-control, discipline, strength & grace.
Lets always be open to exploring new opportunities to trust & lean into God.
She has another game tomorrow night, so I’ll keep you posted ,)

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Posted by sarahbowling in family, grow, Holy Spirit, listen, living, prayer, values, watch, 4 comments

Tiny but Mighty

I read this morning about how Samuel was working on picking the next king for Israel after Saul & was being introduced to Jesse’s sons, from the oldest to the youngest. When Samuel first met Jesse’s oldest son, Samuel thought he was a shew-in, but God quickly corrected Samuel & told him not to make decisions based on external appearances – God looks at the heart & isn’t influenced by what’s on the outside (tall, handsome, suave, etc). After meeting supposedly all of Jesse’s sons, Samuel didn’t pick any of them. Finally, Jesse mentioned that his last son, the smallest & maybe the least likely or eligible, was out herding sheep. Once they brought in David, Samuel knew he was to be the next king. David was the least likely & seemingly most ineligible – tiny but mighty. In my mind, tiny by mighty, was often a theme in David’s life (Goliath, fighting the Philistines, running from Saul, overcoming Absalom’s treachery & more). Tiny can most certainly be mighty 🙂

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Posted by Sarah in fasting, Genuine love, grow, Holy Spirit, listen, living, prayer, saving moses, spiritual, values, watch, 3 comments

course corrections

I was reading this morning in Hebrews 12 about how God corrects, just like a loving father corrects & disciplines his children.  I used to hate the whole idea of correction & being disciplined.  If the truth be told, there has been an arrogance in me about receiving correction.  In the past, I had the mindset that I did things so well that I didn’t need correction – which of course set me up for some very serious confrontations and painful corrections.  Being corrected & discipline isn’t fun.  It hurts.  But here are a few points in Hebrews 12 that have helped me about receiving correction:

  • correction is evidence of love – Heb 12:6;  no love, no correction :/
  • God’s correction is for our benefit – Heb 12:10
  • when God corrects you, decide to endure  & change:  don’t faint when God corrects you – Heb 12:5
  • God’s correction yields good fruit in our lives (peaceful fruit of righteousness) – Heb 12:11
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Posted by Sarah in enemies to intimacy, Genuine love, grow, Holy Spirit, listen, living, prayer, spiritual, values, 2 comments