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The Greatest Gifts Aren’t In Pretty Boxes

Credit: Home. Life. Encouragement

Sweet Thoughts on this Christmas Week:

Some of the greatest gifts don’t come in packages, but in lab coats instead.

For anyone who has ever experienced a bad doctor, you realize with a quickness to cherish the good ones.

As I sit here waiting for Kiddo again in this large parking lot, I’m praying that God will touch the hand of Dr. Ben-O’ and that his treatment plan today will break this vicious migraine cycle and she will receive the best gift in life and that would be to be pain free for Christmas.

Thank you God for placing this amazing doctor in Kiddo’s life and for giving him the determination to not give up despite the great difficulty in treating her.

Remember, as we draw closer to Christmas Day and you are finishing up your shopping and wrapping of all the gifts that will be placed under the Christmas trees, that the most precious of gifts are not wrapped up in pretty boxes, but in those we are with all through the year.

Today my greatest gifts are those who wear lab coats. Three in particular. They are Dr. Ben O’, Dr Jeff, and Dr Malone. These three men have never given up on my daughter and for them my heart is eternally grateful!!!

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“Where’s The Line To See Jesus”

“Where’s The Line To See Jesus” – Becky Kelley
https://youtu.be/OExXItDyWEY

I am sharing one of my favorite Christmas songs with you today. Click on the link in the above image to listen to this beautiful song.

This is one that touches my heart year after year. It is also one that seems to be overlooked, but I don’t know why.

Where’s the line to see Jesus?

Is He here at the store?

If Christmas time is His birthday,

Why don’t we see Him more?

Lyrics excerpt from Becky Kelley’s song, “Where’s The Line To See Jesus”

As many of us grow more tired and weary from the hustle and bustle of this very busy season, I want to encourage you to take a moment to warm your tired and weary heart with the sweet lyrics to this Christmas song.

I also want to inspire you to take a moment to sit back and breathe. Enjoy the twinkling lights, the soft sounds, and the sweet smells of the season that you brought to life for your family and friends.

Lastly, I want to remind that it is ok to take a moment to open your heart, and enjoy the fruits of your labor.

Merry Christmas to each and everyone of you.

May you find a sense of peace and joy in the few days left of the Christmas season.

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Merry and Bright

Credit: Home. Life. Encouragement
Today’s Encouragement is to remind you of the importance of showing kindness, being tenderhearted, and forgiving of those who are around you.

Be kind to one another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, as God in Christ forgave you.

Ephesians 4:32 ESV

God’s standards are higher that what we place on ourselves.

First, Kindness.

Think about this for a minute.

Is He all of the above?

Is God kind, tenderhearted, and forgiving to everyone of us every day?

Does He show kindness towards us even when we are least deserving of it?

How many times do we act out irrationally towards others, whether we feel they deserved it or not? However, does whether they deserve it or not count as a valid reason in God’s eyes?

No, because God shows us kindness as well as mercy and grace even when we have messed up the most and deserve it the least.

So instead of judging others to determine if they deserve our kindness, we need to think about this verse and how He was very specific about what He was saying. God said, “Be kind to one another.” That simple.

Now I want to challenge you to think about this the next time you are sitting in traffic or standing in line (6′ apart from one another, thanks to Covid), think about just one random act of kindness that you could bestow on someone in that moment.

If while you are sitting in traffic, could you show kindness by letting the person who is struggling to merge over into your lane?

Could you hold the door open for them, say a simple hello with a smile or assist a person you see struggling?

The random act of kindness can be as simple or as complex as you make it.

Next, Tenderhearted.

Is God not tenderhearted towards us when we keep making the same mistakes over and over again?

Think about being a parent, a teacher, or someone who instructs people to do things all day long. How many times do their constant mistakes begin to grate on your nerves. Sometimes even your last one.

Well, God is simple in this reminder here. He instructs us to be tenderhearted.

He knows how important it is for us to have and use a soft and tender tongue and equally how important it is for our hearts to reflect that same tenderness. For what our words are is a reflection of what is in our hearts.

She opens her mouth with wisdom, and the teaching of kindness is on her tongue.

Proverbs 31:26 ESV

So before you get frustrated with your situation, take a quick breath and ask in that moment for God to soften your heart so it can be tender towards the one in need of it.

Lastly, Forgiveness.

Is He not all forgiving, even when we don’t deserve it?

God asks for us to be forgiving just as He, Himself, is forgiving. This however, for most of us, is actually the hardest one of all.

Think about a situation you may be facing that requires you to have a forgiving heart.

Think about how much better you would feel if you just gave up the fight and allowed the forgiveness to take over your heart, instead of the feeling the anger, jealousy, bitterness and hurtfulness that has consumed you.

So many times we allow the ugliness from the wrongful act to consume us. We ask ourselves, “Why would I forgive that person for “x”? Then we justifly ourselves in believing we do not have forgive them because “they were wrong!” We convince ourselves that is it perfectly okay to not forgive them by saying, “I’m not going to do that. I don’t have to. It wasn’t my fault.”

Does any of this sound familiar?

Now stop for a moment and think about who is really being hurt by those thoughts and feelings.

Not the person who did you wrong. Not the person next door or the people you are living with. No, only “you” pay for the hardened feelings and raw emotions that go with this anger and vengence.

Are you not more important that the wrong that has been done to you?

Now, take a moment and think about the “Reason for the Season”.

God created His Son to come to this world to not just to walk around the streets of it like we do today. He didn’t come to be your best friend or neighbor next door. He sent His Son to this world to die an ugly and horrific death on a cross, not because He didn’t love Him, but instead because He not only loved Him, but He loved us. He sent us His Son as a living sacrifice for each and everyone of us. He says very clearly, “for those who believe in Him will not parish, but have eteranl life.” This requires us to ask God to forgive us of our sins and in turn we are guarenteed our Home in Heaven.

For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.

John 3:16 NIV

Did you catch that very important part? God doesn’t think about what we have done by checking off blocks on a score card of sorts. No, He promises to forgive us of our sins and wrongdoings.

In turn, God’s command to us is simple, it is to forgive one another just as He forgives us.

He didn’t put stipulations with it. Well, forgive if they __________ (fill in the blank) or don’t forgive if they ________ (fill in the blank).

No, His command was to forgive one another, just as Christ forgave you.

So as we close out today’s encouragement, let us be reminded how we can show kindness, tenderheartedness, and forgiveness towards everyone, during the hustle and bustle of this busy Christmas season.

Have a wonderful day, dear Friend!

#Keepingitreal, Anxiety, Breathe, Broken, Burn out, Discouraged, Exhausted, Holiday, Hope, Inspiration, Journey, Keeping It Real, Life, Rest, Weariness

Making A Difference Fights Against The Lies of Exhaustion

Credit: Homelifeandencouragement.com

As we move into the holiday season, we can find it a stressful and exhausting season.

If you are like me and you are already exhausted, then we could be walking into this season feeling defeated and discouraged.

I am here to remind you today, in case you forget, how important you are and that everything you are doing is making a difference.

“Act as if what you do makes a difference. It does.”

William James

Take some time this weekend to rest, refresh, and reset yourself.

Rest is an obvious suggestion while refresh can mean anything.

What does this mean to you?

To me it means to do something that has been weighing heavy on me.

To me what will be refreshing will be to finish decorating for Christmas so I can sit back on the busy work days and relax in the beauty of my home.

It also means to sort through my everyday stuff that I took down to decorate and put it in the attic until after the holiday season.

If this is accomplished before I go back to work on Monday, then I will feel productive and accomplished which will help to make me feel refreshed.

I just have to remember to rest and reset, which if I’m not careful, could be overlooked.

How about you? What does this look like to you? What do you want to do to refresh and reset yourself?

No matter what this looks like, remember these simple words, “You are making a difference.”

All too many times when we find ourselves in a state of exhaustion, our minds begin to lie to us, telling us we are not important and what we are doing is foolish.

My friend, do not believe these lies. Instead, remember, “You are Important!”

Take the time this weekend to rest, refresh, and reset.

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Oh The Simple Things I Love About Thanksgiving

I’m so excited for our Thanksgiving this year. 

In the past our meal was surrounded by the stress of making the most out of nothing as money was so critically tight, but this year is different for us. 

This year I have a job which is enabling us to enjoy a few extras that we are so use to doing without or dealing with the stress to make it happen. 

This year however, I was able to think about what we liked and make my plans according to what we want without the stress of trying to make it happen. 

So here is to my homemade Apple Pie. 

An all time favorite from my past. 

I’m excited to have my Apple pie served with a dollop of whip cream. 

Then there is the awaited Friday morning serving of pumpkin pie with whip cream for breakfast. 

Oh the simple things I love about Thanksgiving. 

What is yours? 

Leave your comments below. It will be fun to see what you love about Thanksgiving and seeing your memories of the past.

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Honoring and Remembering Our Heros’s

Credit: Home. Life. Encouragement 

Remembering Memorial Day 2020

I am remembering and honoring my dad and his memory this Memorial Day weekend.

My dad passed away February 13, 2008 due to the injuries he sustained during the Vietnam War.

He selflessly joined the United States Marines to serve his Country and sustained life altering injuries that not only took years to partially recover from, but ultimately took his life from.

Credit: Home. Life. Encouragement 
“Honoring my Dad’s Sacrifice”

My dad was a “True Hero” who was brave, courageous, gentle, strong, loving, caring, and humble. He gave so much to many, to include his Country.

I am so blessed to call him my dad, while others called him husband, friend, and comrade.

He never met a stranger and his Service to our Country was what God used to make those around him respect him and honor him.

This Memorial Day, I proudly call him to everyone’s attention. He is one of many who we need to remember and honored this weekend.

There are so many Hero’s who paid the ultimate sacrifice and we need to, as a thankful Nation, remember and honor each and everyone of them.

We need to let their families and friends know that “We Will Never Forget”.

Let’s start a list to Honor and Remember them this Memorial Day Weekend. Do you know someone who paid the ultimate sacrifice? Leave their name and picture below so we can celebrate, honor, and respect them as well.

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Wishing You A Merry Christmas Eve

Credit: Home. Life. Encouragement

Merry Christmas Eve!

There are so many people who find today to be solemn and somber for a whole host of reasons. It is my prayer God will provide you a peace and comfort today and the days to come.

To those who are celebrating it is my prayer God will bless you with sweet memories you will cherish in the years to come.

From my home and heart to yours, Merry Christmas! 🎄

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Thanksgiving Blessings

I am wishing everyone a special message of Thanksgiving today.

To those who will celebrate with joy as well as those who will struggle with loneliness and pain, I am sending you my love, peace, and encouragement that today will be a day to celebrate or a day to reflect and be thankful for the blessings you have.

Happy Thanksgiving to each and one of you.

Feel free to share below your thankful blessings today.
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I will begin by being thankful for each one of you who encourage me to keep this page going. I am blessed that God has given me this blog to encourage you all when you need it the most. Big Hugs to each one of you. ❤️

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Recognizing My Daughter Today

It is National Daughter’s Day

I am recognizing my sweet daughter for National Daughter’s Day.

I love you Kiddo. Your heart is a sweet and gentle one. You are fun loving and I just love your sense of humor. You always know how to make me laugh at just the right times.

God has special plans for your life and although it is busy now and isn’t always easy for you, one day it will all be worth it.

I love you Katarine!! You make me proud to be you momma!

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Sharing Fall Vibes

This image is my favorite fall display. It is on my counter by my kitchen sink. I spend a lot of time here and just love the coziness of this little corner.

Hey Y’all, I am popping in to share quickly some simple fall decorating ideas with you.

Do you like to decorate for fall, but get lost in the feeling you have to go over the top, so you choose to do nothing instead?

My friends, I want to remind you that sometimes the simpler you decorate, the prettier your room will be.

This is a simple decoration I have on my little table at my communication area. This is a simple but sweet decoration whether it is during the day or at night. See next image for what it looks like when the lights are on.

I went through my house the other day and took a few pictures of some simple things I have done, and wanted to share them because bring such a sense of peace to my home.

I shouldn’t tell you this, but it took me three days to decorate. One night I put my decorations out just to put it out and then spent the following days rearranging to my decor to get the look I was striving for. So if you do the same, you are not alone.

It took me this long because my life was crazy busy that week. I took small opportunities to rearrange my decor as I had the time to do so. So if you find yourself in the same situation, be comforted because you can still decorate even if you are busy. Just do it as you have time.

This is an image of what my simple little jar looks like with the lights on.

It is better to decorate over a few of days than it is to get frustrated and not do it at all.

Lastly, do you have a concern that you can’t decorate because your money is tight ? If the answer is yes, then be comforted to know you can decorate with what you have laying around the house.

I used my canning jars with a strand of mini lights and a few leaves and created this look. I showed a picture of what it looks like without the lights on an here is an picture of what it looks like with the lights on.

This simple display is beside the chair I sit at in our media room. It provides a soft and festive fall feeling in the darkness of night.

This display to the right is similar to the above image because it too uses a large jar that I use year round and simply added lights and a few flowers and simply added some flowers and pumpkins to the table beside them.

These are a couple examples of how you can decorate for fall using everyday items as well as a few flowers, leaves, pumpkins, and lights to make a beautiful fall display.

Consider thinking outside the box and your fall decor will be simplistic, but still beautiful.

My favorite fall sent in cleaning supplies this fall is Acorn Spice.

I will attach a few of my favorite fall cleaning supplies as well as my favorite fall tart scents.

Fall Cleaning supplies would be Mrs. Meyers Acorn Spice  12.5 Oz Hand Soap, 16 Oz Dish Soap, 16 Oz Multi-Surface Cleaner, 4.9 Oz Candle.  Be sure to order quickly as their supplies are running out quickly. You can also purchase these in your local Target as well. 

My favorite seasonal Tart this fall is this; Better Homes & Gardens 2.5 oz Mahogany and Sandalwood Scented Wax Melts. “This fragrance is filled with the smell of warm mahogany, aromatic birch wood, crisp juniper berry, and fresh green balsam shimmer with fragrant herbs, touches of sparkling citrus, and smooth sandalwood, all wrapped around sage and sweet moss.” (Walmart.com description) This is a sweet smell when surrounded by the comforts of your fall decorations and creates a warm and inviting setting.

Disclaimer, I am not being sponsored by either Grove Collaborative, Walmart, or Target by promoting the above products. I am simply sharing these products because I am extremely pleased with them at this time.