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Posts Tagged ‘serving others’

 

I like my life drama-free. My first marriage had enough turmoil to last me a lifetime. I’m very comfortable with our quiet, boring routine.

Our home and schedule change drastically when my daughter and granddaughters visit. Those are the changes we love. The rooms seem to get smaller as we bring out the toys and baby furniture. The walls get dirty, stickers appear in random places, dust bunnies collect, and the dog gets bigger from snacks sneaked and food dropped.

Yes, our seemingly mundane life turns chaotic when the family comes to visit, but we really don’t mind at all.

Seven years ago our daughter and granddaughters spent five weeks with us while they got their paperwork in order to live in my son-in-law’s home town in England. At that time Fiona was four years old and Eleanor was eight months old. They had previously lived in Hungary and their annual visits were precious. Those weeks were sublime!

As usual, I hated the quiet after they left and immediately started the post-visit routine. I put away the toys and furniture so I wouldn’t get depressed. I washed walls, scrubbed floors, and regained control of my environment. I cried around the house on and off for days, longing for them to video chat with me. However, I knew they were busy settling into their new home in the UK.

Again, my heart was broken. “This doesn’t get easier,” I told a friend. Then something happened that helped put it in perspective.

A friend from church lost a baby grandson. We know he is in the arms of Jesus, but that doesn’t take the pain away.

My heart may be broken when my family goes back home, but I know I’ll see them again on our next visit. We’ll video chat with them regularly. I’ll hold them again here on earth. My friend cannot.

How do others see God working in your everyday life and mine? Click To Tweet

It put my woes in proper perspective as I watched my friend’s family exude God’s peace while He heals their hearts. God used the faith shown by the grieving family to minister to those around them. We see God working in their everyday lives.

Philippians 4:4-9 says, “Rejoice in the Lord always. I will say it again: Rejoice! Let your gentleness be evident to all. The Lord is near. Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.

“Finally, brothers and sisters, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable—if anything is excellent or praiseworthy—think about such things. Whatever you have learned or received or heard from me, or seen in me—put it into practice. And the God of peace will be with you.”

Now, several years later, I learn that my family can’t visit this spring. I’ve come to expect them in April and, once again, my heart is broken. Once again, I have to concentrate on “whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable” – those things that are praiseworthy and excellent. Sadly, as always, it’s easier said than done. I feel it’s time to get busy helping others and put my woes in the proper perspective.

Pour out onto those around us like water through a broken vase.#loveothers #pourout Click To Tweet

When we remain teachable and keep our eyes on Christ, He will help us see those hurting around us. If we reach out to others in their need, we won’t be caught up in our own hurts, concerns, and problems. It helps. It really does. Keeping our minds on what is pure and lovely will help us realize that God’s peace is with us. I pray we keep our hearts open to learn from God and to put what we’ve learned into practice, allowing His love to pour out onto those around us like water through a broken vase.

To those who have lost a child, I pray God's love overwhelms you...He is near. Click To Tweet

To those who have lost a child, I pray God’s love overwhelms you and fills you with His perfect peace each day as you learn to carry on. He will show you. He will guide you. He is near.

 

Kelly J. Stigliano enjoys life in Orange Park, FL with her husband, Jerry. A blended family, they have five grown children, a son-in-law, and two granddaughters – spread across the globe! She has contributed to thirteen anthologies, written hundreds of articles, and recently released her memoir, Praying for Murder, Receiving Mercy. Documenting eight years of her life, it is written in two parts with photographs in the middle. Kelly travels as a speaker, making people laugh and cry as she shares her heart. To learn more about Kelly’s ministry, her speaking topics, and books, please visit http://www.kellystigliano.com.

 

Peace and grace,

Tammy

 

I sometimes link-up with these wonderful bloggers:

Mondays   InstaEncouragementsAnita Ojeda, Mandy and MicheleKingdom Bloggers,

Tuesdays RaRa Linkup /GraceFull Tuesday / Tell His Story/Anchored Abode,

Wednesdays   Worth Beyond RubiesRecharge Wednesday Welcome Wednesday /LetsHave Coffee/Porch Stories

Thursdays Heart Encouragement  /  Tune In Thursday  /Salt and Light /  Five Minute Friday

Friday Counting My Blessings, Faith on Fire, Blogger Voices Network

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The primary way to overcome Satan is on our knees..png

November’s dim morning light shrouds the room in a blanket of calm as I greet the Father. “Lord, what work do you have for me today? How can I be like Jesus in someone’s life?” The words hang in the hush of a home not yet interrupted by the rush of bodies hurrying toward busy and I pause, wondering what the day might bring.

I can’t know that by the time the sun sits low on the horizon like a burnished orange dangling heavy on a tree, my heart will quake–grieving for a nine-year old child and wondering what her hours between school and bedtime might entail.

While writing is my passion, teaching is my profession and I love the children whose little bodies fill my classroom. Years ago, I chose to teach because I longed to be the person who might make a difference in a hurting child’s life. I wanted to be that child’s rescuer. Her hope giver. His I-believe-in-you and there-is-more-than-this-joy-bringer.

I wanted to be that child's rescuer.Her hope giver.His I-believe-in-you and there-is-more-than-this-joy-bringer. Click To Tweet

But, naive optimism sometimes collides with reality.

Today, my heart flutters rapidly when a small one says weakly, “I’m afraid to go home. I don’t know what he’ll do to me.” Her eyes seem to plead with me as she leans into my body and I wrap gentle arms around her fragile frame–just as I wish someone had done for another little girl years ago.

I do everything as expected. I make the calls to the State. Complete the required paperwork. And I ask, “Will anyone be able to visit the home before this child goes home?”

The woman on the other end of the line sighs. “Not unless you notice bruising or you were informed of sexual abuse.”

This child--every child--should feel safe.Protected.Loved. Click To Tweet

I thank the woman for her time, drop the call, and feel tears gathering at the back of my throat and drowning my heart. This child–every child– should feel safe. Protected. Loved.

Now, my thoughts and prayers hover over a brown-eyed child and I pray. I ask Jesus to be the one I am incapable of being in this little one’s life and He reminds me.

I Am the Savior who wept tears over a people in need of rescue. I Am the divine planner who lovingly leads a wandering, needy people to eternal hope. I Am the One in whom all things are possible.

I. Am. Able.

Still unsettled, I’m reminded of heaven’s King who exchanged Heaven’s glory for an inglorious manger. The fountain of peace for a world awash in sin. The throne of worship for the disgrace of a cross.

My assignment today was to love a hurting child, but the Father’s mission?                          To be the great I Am.

His power overcome that which is wicked.His purposes will prevail when life is unjust.His presence will guard the weak until the lamb is revealed as a Lion. Click To Tweet

His power will overcome that which is wicked. His purposes will prevail even when life is unjust. And His presence will guard the weak until the Lamb is revealed as a Lion.

 

I would love to know how God has shown himself faithful in your assignments this week. Leave a comment and encourage others with your testimony or let me know how I can pray for you.

Peace and grace,

Tammy

 

Linking up often with the following:

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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