Category Archives: Five Minute Friday

Five Minute Friday: Comfort

How can it be Friday again already?

Linking up again with Kate Motaung and the Five Minute Friday community.  Today’s word is comfort.

How do you comfort someone who has experienced great loss?

In the past few months, we walked with two families in the midst of their loss.

Sometimes there are no words.  Sometimes you sit without words and feel their pain.

Sometimes they want to talk.  Some words ease the pain a bit.  Sometimes a hug helps or the tears you shed that mirrors theirs.

At times like these, there lurks a fear.  The fear of saying the wrong thing, the fear of being inappropriate.  The fear of making their pain worse instead of easing it.

Pushing through the fear to show up, even if you say the wrong thing or unintentionally step on someone’s toes, is the right thing to do.

Showing up lets people know you care, even if you do it imperfectly.

Sitting with them in the middle of the pain is the best way I know to offer comfort.

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Five Minute Friday: Play

It’s Friday!  That means it’s time to link up with Kate Motaung and the FMF gang.

Today’s prompt is “play”

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Play is a child’s work.

It’s where a child can try on the Superman Cape or the Mommy’s apron.

It’s where her world is safe and she can abandon herself to the serious pursuit of imagination, oblivious to the sacrifices required to make that possible.

When we’ve grown up with that luxury, we make the sacrifices for the next generation to enjoy it as well, unfettered by the weight of adult responsibility.

It’s a gift to kids.

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Five Minute Friday: Blessing

It’s Friday!  (More exciting than usual because it proceeds a four day weekend for me.)

Linking up again with Kate Motaung and the Five Minute Friday crew.

Today’s Five Minute Friday prompt is blessing.

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Today’s prompt reminds me of Rachel Cruz’s book, Love Your Life, Not Theirs.

I have to admit I didn’t read the whole book, but I paged through it and remember reading about the #blessed hashtag that people use on social media when they’re posting pictures of new houses, cars and vacations.

Once more, it comes down to heart issues. Are people trying to flaunt what they have to make others jealous? Maybe some are. There’s probably always mixed motives. The heart is deceptive, after all.

Sometimes, though, it’s genuine joy and happiness that people want to share. It’s our problem if we feel envious.

One thing to keep in mind, is everyone has their pain. It might be health issues or relationship problems. It might be financial, legal or job stress.

The pictures on social media never capture the entirety of someone’s life. The trick is to be grateful for the blessings of our own lives and not worry about those of others.

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Five Minute Friday: Steady

It’s Friday!  Linking up with Kate Motaung and Five Minute Friday.

This week’s prompt is: Steady

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There’s a lot in life that threatens to capsize our vessels.

A health crisis.  An unexpected death.

A wave of expenses that you’re unprepared for.

A relationship that crumbles and falls apart, leaving you dazed and hurt.

It’s tempting to just let life pull you under.

Without an Anchor, that’s exactly what happens.

I’ve seen it happen.

We have to drop the Anchor to stay steady and ride the waves to smoother sailing.

Taking time to regain perspective, to reaffirm belief.  To speak truth to ourselves, trusting the Anchor to hold us steady.

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Five Minute Friday: Worth

It’s Friday!  Linking up with Kate Motaung and the Five Minute Friday crew.

Today’s prompt: worth

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What is a human life worth?

What is it’s value?

In the Sherlock TV series, Mary Watson steps in front of a bullet meant for Sherlock.  It’s a powerful image of redemption.

Even more so when Sherlock realizes it.

“In saving my life she conferred a value on it. It is a currency I do not know how to spend.”

It’s easy to say a life is priceless.  It’s even easy to believe it at some level.

But the sacrifice of another’s life emphasizes the value, the worth.

Going to funerals often makes me reflective about spending my one and only life well.

Investing in eternity is always a good choice.

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Five Minute Friday: Expect

It’s Friday.  Linking up again with Kate Motaung.

Today’s prompt is: expect.

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I can’t help but think of hope when I hear the word expect.

Hope, that critical element that we can’t live without.  It’s what keeps us going when we’re discouraged.

It’s what we need to get up in the morning.

It’s what keeps us serving, thinking of others instead of ourselves.

It’s what helps us deal with grief and despair.

The hope that this life is not all there is.

The hope an eternity of joy and blessing.

That idea is the spark that moves us forward.

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Last night when I took a peek at the prompt expect, my mind turned to pregnancy.

But, this morning, my heart was full thinking about the funeral of a dear friend later today.

I’ve thought a lot about how hope is one of life’s most critical elements.  Today, it’s hitting deeper that our eternal hope is the bedrock to virtually all we do.

For me, to wait in expectation means to hope.

I’m so thankful for that hope.

 

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Five Minute Friday: Future

It’s Friday.  Time for another link up with Kate Motaung.

Today’s prompt is: future.

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I live in the future.

That is where my daydream fantasies are always perfect.

Where things go my way and even my craziest ideas work out and are brilliantly successful.

All this as opposed to the here and now.

Where things are messy. And I screw up.

AND I CAN’T WRITE FOR FIVE MINUTES WITHOUT BEING INTERRUPTED!!

There’s just lots of irritations in the present.

The perfect, fantasy, daydream future is so enticing.  No wonder I want to live there instead of here.

I have to fight it.

I have to be present in the here and now.  With the mess.  With the interruptions.  With people who don’t agree with all my brilliant ideas, who point out the flaws and see the drawbacks that I don’t see.

I need to be present.  Here.  Today.

And not only present, but grateful.  Grateful for what is.  Grateful for the mess.  Grateful for the people who see the drawbacks and my imperfections and walk along with me anyway.

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3 Things I’ve Learned, Spring 2017

This season our lives have taken some unexpected twists:  car accident, theft, a good friend losing ground to cancer.  I’m re-evaluating God’s sovereignty and maybe trusting it more than I used to.

Linking up with Emily P. Freeman to share what we’ve learned.

Family Christian bookstores has closed all 240 locations nationwide.

These closings are of particular interest to me because we own a bookstore.

I’ve been following the story of Family Christian for a few years.  They became a non-profit several years ago.  Then they filed for bankruptcy.  Their creditors sued them after the original bankruptcy proposal.  So they re-organized and filed again.  Their second proposal was accepted.  That lasted two years.  Now they are shutting their doors for good.

Of course, Amazon and online purchasing is to blame.  Just like the big box bookstores that didn’t survive and many independent bookstores that have gone under.

I tend to think there are other factors in play as well. I think the quality of Christian products has influenced sales.  There are some notable exceptions, but there are a lot of poor quality products with a Christian stamp on them that ruins the reputation for all Christian sales.  Most notable are CDs and Movies, but I believe it to be true across the board.

I also think the climate of Christianity in this country is reflected.  I don’t want to detract from good things going on, but there’s a lot of lukewarmness and apathy as well.

How to listen to podcasts on my phone

I’m a slow learner and not techy at all, but I was able to install the Stichter app to my phone and subscribe to my favorite podcasts.

I usually listen to the podcasts in the car to and from work or doing errands around town.

The Dave Ramsey Show is the one I listen to the most.  What Should I Read Next is one I don’t miss, although I’ve become a little wary of some of her top picks.

Speaking about not being techy:  I’m learning how to use MailChimp again.  I used it a decade ago to create a newsletter for a school.  But, it’s evolved since then and I have a terrible memory.   So, it’s an uphill learning curve.

I like the intellectual challenge of Five Minute Friday.  

Writing for five minutes based on a one word prompt has stretched my creativity in all the best ways.

I’ve learned the importance of limits: knowing when to start and when to stop.  Knowing when to stop is critical.  When you don’t know when to stop, it’s hard to get started.

My mind so quickly drifts to the theoretical and philosophical.  It’s my favorite type of thinking.  Practical execution, actually pulling it off?  Therein lies the rub.

What have you learned this Spring?

 

 

 

 

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Five Minute Friday: Visit

Linking up with Kate Motaung and Five Minute Friday.

This week’s prompt is: visit.

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Visit makes me think of temporary versus permanent.

As in, it’s a nice place to visit, but I wouldn’t want to live there.

I’ve read a couple of of blog posts this week about Third Culture Kids transitioning and dealing with life.  I can relate to the itchy feet of wanting to move on, but also to the desire to put down some roots.

What are the elements that make up home?

I want to read Tsh Oxenrider’s book At Home in the World, because I think she deals with some of those same issues.

They say home is where the heart is, but what if your heart is stretched across continents?

The very word home carries a lot of meanings– a haven for some, but not for others.

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I love exploring the global nomad issues, especially when the light bulb comes on.  That happened  when I realized that our family tree was grafted.

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Five Minute Friday: Truth

It’s time for Five Minute Friday.  Five minutes of unedited free writing based on a prompt.

This week’s word is truth.

Linking up again with Kate Motaung.

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Truth is the foundation that we build our days and future upon.

I’ve been concerned recently about the core beliefs that people have that wreck havoc with their lives.

I read a novel that was based on the premise that gender is a choice.  The implications of that belief?

Overwhelming.

We’re talking about 4 and 5 year old kids.  We’re talking about all the children that go to school together.  We’re talking about a whole generation of gender confused.  It’s mind boggling.

And that’s just one “truth” that is foundational to our future.

It’s time to re-examine the truths floating around and challenge them.

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