Category Archives: Five Minute Friday

Five Minute Friday: Different

Our college kid is home!  Thankful to have him here and for a safe airport run in spite of storms blowing in.

Linking up again with Kate Motaung and the FMF community.

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I’m wondering why humans hate being different.

Is it the fear of ridicule, rejection, judgment?

Kids want to dress the same.  They want to have what their friends have.  They want to achieve the same things or one up the next guy.

We generally don’t like standing out from the crowd if it garners unwanted attention.

What would happen if we embraced our differences?   If we were truly thankful for them?  If we didn’t try to hide them?

How much bolder could we live life?

Maybe it’s a reward worth changing our mindset for.

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Five Minute Friday: Only

It’s Friday!

This week brought our first snowfall, plus busy days at the store, basketball games, and all the usual December angst.

I’m amazed at how the pressure of writing for five minutes produces a different type of creativity than when I write without the pressure.

Linking up again this week with Kate Motaung and the FMF community.

This week’s word is:  only.

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If only . . .

Two of the saddest words in the English language.

Pregnant with regret.

Wistful to re-write history.

Because we can’t go back. We can’t make changes. All we have is the present and the future.

We cling to the promise that there is no condemnation.

That the years the locusts have eaten will be restored.

In spite of the dark clouds of the past, the future is bright.

We have hope.

We don’t have to live with regret.

We can even be grateful for the treacherous, winding trail that has brought us here.

We know how the story ends, so we don’t have to wallow in the sadness of if only . . .

Our eyes are fixed on the bright tomorrow.

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Five Minute Friday: Near

It’s Friday!

In spite of being a good week, overall, this morning was chock full of frustrations and irritations and roadblocks.

The Five Minute Friday words tend to make me philosophical.  Which is fine. That’s my happy place.

This week’s word is: near.  Linking up with Kate Motaung and the FMF community.

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God is near to the broken hearted.

It’s hard to know what to say to people who are hurting.

So many things aren’t helpful.  So many things aren’t sensitive.

And, in spite of good intentions, so many things don’t land where you want them to.

The God of all comfort gives peace that passes understanding.

That brings us hope.

And when we’re hurting, hope is what we need.

The hope that God is near to the broken hearted.  He is compassionate.  He cares for widows and orphans and sparrows.  He knows the needs.  He knows us inside and out, down to the hairs on our head.

If we can grasp that, we have hope.

If we can share hope with the hurting, it doesn’t matter too much what we say.

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Five Minute Friday: Familiar

Slower paced days are good times to be thankful.  I’m thankful for any pauses in life that we fill with gratitude.  It’s certainly a good time of year to be thankful for family.

Happy Friday, everyone!

Linking up with Kate Motaung and the FMF community.

This week’s word is: familiar.

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Familiar feels safe and comfortable.

It’s the unknown that feels scary.

Even if the familiar is as comfortable and predictable as worn slippers, it can also be boring.

The truth is, we don’t have to fear the unknown. Frankly, it might be as terrible as we dread it will be.

But, our anchor is secure. Our hope is in the One who knows what we don’t.

We do know the end of the story, even if we don’t know the paths along the way.

We try so hard to make life predictable, but we can’t.

The reality is, we don’t know. We can’t control. We can’t plan for every contingency.

But, we can trust. We can consciously leave the familiar and step out into the unknown.

The bridge will appear beneath our feet.

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Five Minute Friday: Excuse

 

The weather has gotten colder and basketball season is gearing up.

I’ve enjoyed having some evenings at home this week.  It’s harder to go out when it’s cold.

Linking up with Kate Motaung and the FMF community.

This week’s word: excuse.

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Have you ever stopped to think about why you make an excuse for something?

Sometimes our behavior is irrational. We’re trying to avoid pain, maybe. We’re trying to protect ourselves.

Sometimes that behavior is governed by a core belief we don’t even know we have. Sometimes we cling to irrational beliefs.

Looking them square in the face and deconstructing them helps.
Getting another person’s perspective helps. (As long as they don’t share your irrational beliefs.)

Prayer helps.

It’s so very hard to tell ourselves the truth.

So many times it isn’t pretty.

The heart is deceitful and desperately wicked, after all.

It even deceives ourselves. Especially ourselves.

So, making excuses might just be clue.

A clue to the real motives behind behavior. A peek at the irrational beliefs that are really driving us.

It might hurt to look closer, but, ultimately, the path of truth is better.

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Five Minute Friday: Silence

It’s Friday!

I’m already feeling the increased pace of the holiday season and  I’m strategizing on how to cope.  Just when you think you have things figured out, there’s another monkey wrench.

Linking up again with Kate Motaung and the FMF community.

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Silence is rare and precious.

Maybe that’s why it’s called golden.

Our world is busy and noisy. It’s hard to be still and breathe deeply. It’s hard to think. It’s hard to remember to stop and be grateful.

We have to intentionally build pauses in the rhythm of our days and weeks and years where we chase silence.

I know there are those who have too much silence. They long for more voices, more sounds of feet, more jostling and playing.

I’m not there yet. I still don’t get enough silence for my soul.

But, I’m thankful for this phase of life. Too busy. Too noisy. But full. Full of relationship, meaningful work, a few pauses and occasional silence.

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Five Minute Friday: Need

It’s Friday!  It’s been a week.  All the extremes of emotion.  Stress. Gratitude.

It’s nice to have some constants every week to be anchored to.  Corporate worship on Sundays is one.  Five minute Fridays is another.

Linking up again with Kate Motaung and the FMF writers.

This week’s prompt is: Need

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What does need feel like?

Thirst and hunger.  A craving desire that consumes.  A focus on the lack rather than the fulfilled.

Humans are no stranger to need.

Every person on the planet can think of a time when the unsatisfied cravings of the body, mind or heart consumed him.

The bigger question is, what do we do when we feel it?

Where do we turn?  How do we try to quench that burning craving?

There is so much that doesn’t satisfy.

So many ways to try to fill that gaping hole that don’t work.

But, so great the relief and peace when the need is satisfied.

When we are filled with what we long for at our very core.  So wonderful.  So blessed.

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Five Minute Friday: Overcome

It’s Friday!

Linking up with Kate Motaung and the FMF community.

Today’s word is: overcome.

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There’s nothing like the feeling of overcoming an obstacle.

Of summiting when you didn’t think you would reach the top.

There’s a lot of excitement at the beginning of something new, but the middle gets messy.

It gets discouraging.  There’s temptations to quit.  Momentum slows down.  It’s just hard to put one foot in front of the other.

But, when the end is in sight, when the summit is in view, that’s enough encouragement to keep going.

Then, you reach the top.

Oh, the relief.  Oh, the exhilaration.  Oh, the fading of memories of the messy middle.

The goal has been reached.  The prize is in hand.

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Five Minute Friday: Discover

Good week.  Busy week. Been doing some learning and reflecting that will result in some tweaking of my writing and blog.  Excited for those changes.

Linking up again with Kate Motaung and the FMF crew.

This week’s prompt is: Discover.

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There’s something about the wonder of a child when they make a discovery:

To see with new eyes the immenseness, the intricacy, the awesomeness.

To experience for the first time and to feel the thrill of uncovering a secret.

We lose that child-like wonder. The reds and yellows and oranges of fall cease to amaze us. The baby grows and we forget the miracle of birth. The butterfly emerges and flies away and we forget the wonder of transformation.

We live in a blaze of glory but it all becomes routine and ordinary when we lose the thrill of discovery.

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Five Minute Friday: Invite

Our youngest turned 18 this week.  So, the running joke is that we’re officially done with parenting.  Life is full of transitions.  Sometimes navigating them can be tricky.

Linking up with Kate Motaung and the Five Minute Friday gang.

Today’s prompt is invite.

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When was the last time you were invited to rest?

Isn’t that a lovely word? Rest.

It conjures images of cozy fires and comfortable chairs. A rug on the floor and a lap blanket.

When we are weary and heavy laden, we are invited to rest.

To put down the burdens and put our feet up.

Wrap our hands around something hot and sweet and exhale.

To sit still in His presence and breathe peace.

What a great invitation.

Why do we insist on striving and worrying when He invites us to rest?

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