Saturday, August 8, 2009

In the stillness of the night....

Most nights I lie awake, unable to sleep and I listen to the quietness all around me. There is no one else awake, the lights are out...I get up and look out the window and the neighbor's lights are one appears to be up.....all I hear are sighs of someone breathing but very still in their sleep. I toss to and fro wishing I could also sleep. My mind begins to race with so many thoughts of the day, week, on-going challenges and I'm reminded that although these thoughts over take my present time, this is the time my body should be getting energized.
As I try to find a comfortable position, it seems all my bones ache, which make me toss and turn more. I lean over because I know my faithful companions, my little dogs are sleeping on the floor beside me. I reach my hand down to pet them and they too are asleep and do not see me reach for them. I have to move closer to the edge of the bed just to reach them. They wag their tails but they do not venture to get up but let me know they feel me touching them. After a few minutes, I can even hear my dogs sleeping. In fact, Dakota (the boy) begins to snore. I listen in the night with envy.
As I lay awake, I realize even in the stillness of the night and cannot sleep that I am content. The secret of contentment is the realization that life is a gift and not a right. Every second of every day counts no matter if we are awake or sleeping. It makes me realize how many seconds, minutes and hours are really in a day. We usually wake up counting the time to work, time to have lunch, time to come home, hours before bedtime and bedtime.
I think maybe I should be counting my blessings. Time is more valuable than money because time is irreplaceable. Sometimes we are so busy adding up our troubles that we forget to count our blessings. "I will remember the works of the Lord: surely I will remember thy wonders of old. I will meditate also of all thy work, and talk of thy doings." Psalms 77:11, 12
I finally did fall asleep very late this morning, as I usually do and the phone started ringing around 7ish a.m. I was in such a deep sleep that I jumped up and realized that someone had taken the phone off my bedside table and so I started running around to find a phone. Normally if we get calls late at night or early in the morning, especially on Saturday, I think something is wrong. By the time, I get to the phone I hear the answering machine kick on. I realize that the call wasn't for me and later not that important to wake the whole family up on a Saturday morning. Jumping up like that out of a deep sleep makes me feel sick to my stomach. So what I thought was going to be a good morning to sleep....becomes restless again, so I just get up. I feel very frustrated that the only morning I get an opportunity to catch up on sleep from the week was taken away!! So now that I've been up, I feel very sleepy but unable to sleep so my day will not be as productive as it needs to be.
However, I am excited because today Kimberly comes back home from Nashville, Tennessee from Youth Congress. There are so many young people at this conference that the mall in Tennessee stays open all night. I know there are parties going on so I'm sure they all stayed up to blow-out the last night. Although I will be very excited to see her and find out all the fun they've had, I'm sure I will see a sleepy daughter come in and go straight to bed. However, it is always peaceful when all the kiddies are home and tucked safely in. It is a content feeling knowing everyone is safe.
So many things have happened this week in the markets and within my Corporation that I realize how lucky we are to have our jobs. It would be nice not to have to work but since we do, it is nice to know we have a place to go to. So many are without jobs....I just pray that things start to settle down, the economy picks up and people are able to find employment.
No matter the situation around us, we must still find happiness. There is more joy for our journey than there is disappointment. If we didn't have disappointment, how would we know the true feelings of gratitude? I don't like to linger long in the pasture of wonder but remember the promise of Jesus, "Cast all your care upon Him, for HE cares for you. 1 Peter 5:7
It doesn't matter who else cares about your situation, God does and that's all that really matters!!
Have a blessed day...and remember God who takes time to keep tabs on every sparrow, then surely HE keeps special tabs on you. You are not alone.

Love to all,

Wednesday, August 5, 2009

Good and not so good things!

Life is so busy, I feel that I meet myself coming and going. Life shouldn't pass by us so quickly. It just seems as the sun comes up in the morning, I go to work and the day becomes a blur and then back home and the sun is already gone down and then in a few short hours, it all starts over again.
I try to remind myself that every day is a blessed day. No matter how much we struggle or what we have to go through, it is worth living. A couple of days ago, someone at work was celebrating a birthday and when I said to them..."oh, someone has a birthday," they replied, "I'm not having one this year," to which I said,"I used to say that until I almost didn't have one so now I'm proud of my age because it means another year God blessed me with life." We get so wrapped up in the things that really mean so little and have to make time for the things we savor so much....why does life have to be that way?
The other day I received a little saying about the things we should no longer worry of the sayings went something like this, "I don't worry as much about my job as I do my friends because when I'm sick or in need, my friends are the ones who visit, call, prepare my supper or just lend support....a job is just a job." The job will just be picked up by someone else and pretty soon they will say, "Leah who?" I say, Amen to that...I have been surrounded by so many friends (work, church and otherwise) that I can't imagine a life without them!!
Since I've last blogged, the friend whom I requested prayer for that had the same cancer as I and only given months to live, died 2 days after I made my last post. I must tell you that I was very heart broken for his family. He and I had spoken about our struggle with this disease and he had total faith that he was going to make it. He was 31, left behind his wife, his son (who is 4) and a daughter who just turned 1 the day before her dad had his colon surgery in January.
I must say that I was shocked and unsettled, as it happened really fast. However, God has a plan for all of us and the most important thing is that he was ready to go. He left behind an awesome legacy for his children. So many live long lives and do not give half as much to their families. It isn't always the quantity, most time we remember the quality time.
Tammy, (she worked at my company for 15 yrs. and had left years ago but we reconnected through my sickness) posts comments on here for me all the time has just found out that she has Hodgkins Lymphoma. She has been there for me throughout this past year faithfully reading my blog, sending cards, leaving comments, etc. never knowing that she would be going through the same thing. She was due for a PET scan today. I believe once she gets the results she will know the stage of cancer she is in.
After I found out last week, she and I were talking and she shared an experience with me that really inspired her. She said that as she was going down the road thinking about the cancer and what she was going to go through, she said she just spoke and said, "God will you just give me a sign that everything is going to be okay?". She said it wasn't 15 seconds later that she looked up at the sky with large billowy clouds and a mist started coming down and then the most beautiful rainbow came out of the sky. God has an awesome way of reassuring us if we put our trust in HIM. We cannot do it ourselves. Sorry for those of you who think it is weak to love God, go to church, etc. If you are ever near death or it comes upon you suddenly, I guarantee you will quickly find out how powerless and weak you really amount of money or power gets you anywhere when faced with death!
Please remember Tammy and her family in your prayers. I know mentally how difficult this journey is....many times the mental part of the journey overshadows the physical part. Believe me, physically there are days you wonder if you are going to make it but I always turned my face and faith to the Comforter. HE is the one who brings you through when you don't think you can't but HE can. I saw a saying today, "He won't take you TO, what he won't bring you THROUGH". Sometimes I firmly believe this is a way to test you! Do you really have what you think you have or what you say you have or are you so weak that you just lie down and die?
Sometimes you can do everything you know to do and still it is in God's plan to go. I still want to be remembered for how hard I fought for my family, how we used the resources of family and friends to get through....if you don't want to fight for yourself...fight for your family....don't they deserve a legacy? Show them what real strength looks like...hang on, hold on and fight!
Not really sure why I'm writing what I'm writing tonight. I just have this feeling that someone is feeling very low and needs to know that it is going to be okay. Success is not what we have, our abilities, our high profile connections, it is feeling peace and contentment. No matter your situation, things could be a whole lot worse and they can be a whole lot better. It is finding the balance of being happy in whatever you do. I'm amazed just people watching and finding those who find excitement in the smallest of things and then others who can find no excitement in anything.
I want to find joy and happiness where ever I have to go or do in life. It is no different than taking a long road trip. You can be 20 hours in misery getting there or finding fun things to do on the way (playing games, singing, watching movies or just enjoying the scenery). No matter what, you will still be on the journey for 20 hrs.....just make the best of it and enjoy the ride.
I have to put a mirror in front of myself sometimes and say, "would I like to be around me?"
Ah, I just looked out the kitchen door as I was typing this and the most beautiful bird just landed. I love birds...another one of God's very special creations!

Love to all,