lessons

What Are You Learning?

Theoretically, I like to learn. In practicality, sometimes it’s difficult for me to learn. In full disclosure, I struggle to learn to trust God & I have a difficult time learning patience & being steadfast, along with many other things.
But it’s interesting that Jesus’ disciples were called “learners”. So when I follow Jesus, my mindset needs to be that of a learner & to live in a continuous state of learning. I want to encourage you to keep a learning mindset, so that our following Jesus keeps getting better & closer everyday! With the help of Holy Spirit, we learn to be better parents, mates, students, employees & humans. So what are you learning?

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Posted by Sarah in busy, enemies to intimacy, family, Genuine love, grow, Heavenly Help, Holy Spirit, listen, living, nightcare, prayer, relationships, spiritual, thought life, travel, values, 0 comments

The Confidence Factor

I’m presently riding with my teenage son who is clocking in driving time so that he can be eligible to get his driver’s license. It’s an interesting experience to watch his confidence or lack of confidence, wax or wane, depending on who’s in the car, his experience, the quantity of traffic & his mind frame. And this confidence thing seems to ring true for all of us.
So here are some things to help with the confidence factor:

  • Being confident in our abilities is never as safe as being confident in God’s wisdom & power.
  • Don’t allow fear & past failures contaminate your confidence
  • Think in terms of what could go right rather than what could go wrong
  • Do it scared – Joyce Meyer
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Posted by sarahbowling in busy, enemies to intimacy, family, Genuine love, grow, Heavenly Help, Holy Spirit, Jesus Chix, listen, living, prayer, relationships, saving moses, spiritual, thought life, travel, values, watch, 0 comments

Road Trip Lessons

For two years in a row, we’ve taken road trips for our vacations, each two weeks long. On our first trip, we went to Washington DC & our second trip is to the West Coast, ala Oregon & California. My husband, the penultimate saint, has done the bulk of the driving for both trips, so maybe I provide some comic relief & moral support. But think about it in terms of family bonding, since there’s no wifi nor DVD player in the car. Mostly, we’re doing pretty well & our three teenagers can say they’ve driven across America.
For me, I think that life is a long road trip, a journey with God with unexpected twists, ups, downs, sometimes tiring & sometimes joyful.
So here are a few thoughts about my road trip with God & maybe they’ll have some tread in your life:

  • Focusing in the car is important , but don’t neglect to look out the windows bc God has a big world around us!
  • Listen & don’t just watch – listen in the car but also listen in your heart as God has some amazing whispers & company to keep with you!
  • Traveling companions are helpful because you see & experience things in different ways than just by yourself.
  • Keep going. Life has struggles, dark times, hot seasons, smelly moments & glorious discoveries.
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Posted by sarahbowling in busy, family, Genuine love, grow, Heavenly Help, Holy Spirit, listen, living, prayer, relationships, spiritual, thought life, travel, values, watch, 0 comments

What I’m Learning

Recently, I had some travel challenges that were similar to something I went through last year. This year, I handled stuff with lots more agility & significantly less angst. The things I did better with included booking an earlier flight instead of nail biting at the last minute. I booked my luggage in increments rather than the whole trip so I don’t think my luggage will go missing for 5days, smile. I also was more proactive with finding a hotel & not looking frantically for something at 2am. There are a few other things I did better on as well, so I’m happy to see that I can learn, grow & improve. I’m equally quick to acknowledge that I don’t know everything, so I continue to stay in learning curve mode. Refusing to learn is dangerous, full on. 
These travel lessons seem applicable to daily living as well:

  • Don’t choose stress when it’s not necessary. 
  • Carry heavy stuff in little increments so it doesn’t get overwhelming
  • Take opportunities to rest, trusting that ultimately God is in control 🙂
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Posted by Sarah in busy, enemies to intimacy, family, Genuine love, grow, Heavenly Help, Holy Spirit, listen, living, nightcare, prayer, relationships, saving moses, spiritual, travel, values, watch, 0 comments

Lessons from Airport Meltdowns

I’ve had my share of airport meltdowns. I still feel sorry for the poor flight agent who got an earful from me about my luggage being small enough to fit in the overhead bin. Then there was the recent dude who wanted to weigh my carry on luggage – no need to give much animation to that exchange. And yesterday, I was hostile with the guy who made my salad because he gave me the wrong salad dressing. As much as I’d like to explain & justify my behavior, it is neither excusable not justified, full stop. 
So here are my lessons that you might find helpful sometime:

  • With the Holy Spirits help, there’s always more patience than pressure.
  • Check your attitude – it’s too expense nowadays to bring extra luggage
  • Keep grace & poise in good form: practice, practice, practice 
  • Watch the monitors: keep alert to your thoughts & anxieties, sometimes they can seep out
  • Get in the right line: bypass those cranky conversations & opt to bring peace & abundant forgiveness. 

Traveling these days affords me ample opportunities to walk the talk 🙂

Get some Heavenly Help no matter where you are in your journey!

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Posted by Sarah in busy, enemies to intimacy, family, Genuine love, grow, Heavenly Help, Holy Spirit, listen, living, prayer, travel, values, watch, 2 comments

Handling a Crisis

A crisis is a really big challenge that can seem impossible & a crisis can be different for each of us. A crisis can be a medical emergency, a job loss, a severed relationship & lots of other things. There are also lots of biblical examples of people who underwent crisis, with varying outcomes, some were amazing & some were abysmal. Here are a few thoughts about handling crisis:

  • Moses at the Red Sea: keep your confidence in God & not what’s happening around you
  • Joshua at the Jordan: be obedient & trust God for the outcomes
  • Peter after denying Jesus: don’t let failures keep you away from Jesus 
  • Saul on the road to Damascus: sometimes a crisis is nothing more than a course correction 

Happy Wednesday to you!

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Posted by Sarah in busy, enemies to intimacy, family, Genuine love, grow, Holy Spirit, Jesus Chix, listen, living, prayer, relationships, saving moses, spiritual, travel, values, watch, 1 comment

Thoughts on Friendships

A few nights ago, one of my best friends & I, with our families, enjoyed a totally fantastic dinner together. We laughed, played, talked deeply, enjoyed God’s creation & reveled in a totally euphoric evening. This friend & I have known each other for a long time & we’ve shared some bumps along the way. I’m confident that the future will also have some possible hiccups for our friendship as well, but I’m growing to appreciate a few important lessons:

  • Forgiveness is an essential ingredient for being close to someone
  • Being steady is better than being dazzling
  • Compassion trumps smart
  • To know another person & let one’s self be known is very great adventure (Gal 4:9)
  • Keeping Jesus as my central & core relationship keeps me healthy
  • No one is perfect

  

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Posted by sarahbowling in busy, enemies to intimacy, family, Genuine love, grow, Holy Spirit, Jesus Chix, listen, living, prayer, relationships, values, watch, 0 comments

Unlearning

Sometimes, I’ve learned lessons that I need to unlearn. For example, I learned to be highly independent & have always been a “do it myself” person. While its good to be independent, it’s better to be inter-dependent. So my “unlearning” is teaching me to be less independent & more inter-dependent, particularly on the Holy Spirit. This idea sounds good in my thinking & feels right in my heart, but the practical execution & roll-out of this unlearning can get kind of tricky & a little scary sometimes. 
Some important ingredients that go with becoming more inter-dependent on the Holy Spirit include:

  • time & schedules: unexpected delays, mishaps & schedule busters never catch the Holy Spirit unaware
  • flexible: adapting to the Holy Spirit means that I don’t always get my way
  • trust: being uncertain or even insecure serve to remind me to be more trusting in God rather than getting freaked out
  • people: lots & lots & lots of lessons with this ingredient, to be sure

What are some things you might need to unlearn?

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

Things to Forget When Traveling

While I don’t consider myself a hard core road warrior, I do seem to travel a fair amount. With all of my traveling experiences, you’d think that is be a really nimble & savy traveller. Wouldn’t that be nice?!??
Alas, here are a few things I’ve learned in my adventures:

I often forget what I like the least. For example, when I travel I’m super attentive to remember my coffee supply but have often neglected to remember to bring my makeup. So I wind up stopping at Walmart or looking in airports for makeup & this can be very frustrating to be certain. 

In my traveling education, I’ve also learned to travel light, because I have to carry whatever I bring. Less luggage = less weight & smoother traveling. 

Being flexible makes traveling more enjoyable than being rigid & demanding

As we travel through life, these are good lessons to carry with his everyday:

*keep a healthy appetite for the Bible, prayer & consistent church in your life not merely as accessories but more so as essentials

*let go of the luggage & weights that could keep you from being lithe & agile: forgive quickly & well  

*remember that God is sovereign & our role is to adapt to God rather than demand from God 🙂

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Posted by sarahbowling in busy, enemies to intimacy, Genuine love, grow, Holy Spirit, Jesus Chix, listen, living, prayer, spiritual, travel, values, watch, 1 comment

Wrestling

Jacob wrestled with an angel or some people think he wrestled with God in Genesis 32. I’m always riveted by these verses & how he spent the night in this divine wrestling match. When it was all done, there were some interesting outcomes:

*Jacob walked away with a limp from his hip being dislocated; don’t expect to go into a divine wrestling match without being changed
*Jacob (deceiver) was renamed to Israel, one who wrestles with God; sounds to me like an upgrade in identity

*solo gig: Jacob did this wrestling thing by himself at night – the last time we read about Jacob by himself at night is when he had the divine dream before meeting Laban in Genesis 28; solitude with God can yield some really awesome outcomes!

It’s not always bad to wrestle with God 🙂

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Posted by sarahbowling in busy, enemies to intimacy, Genuine love, grow, Holy Spirit, Jesus Chix, listen, living, prayer, saving moses, seeing Jesus, spiritual, travel, values, watch, 1 comment