Turning my eyes to the hills


It’s confession time!

I’ve been in and out of the blogosphere and in and out of social media.  I’m trying to keep up because I genuinely care what everyone has to say and share.  My mind has been overwhelmed with processing stuff going on in my life.

I had an interaction with somebody that I thought went wonderfully, and then things led me to believe that perhaps I’d been mistaken.  This situation made me question whether that task I’d been pursuing was even worth my time. I had been sure that my prayer for direction had led to this pursuit.  I was left with my mind reeling.  Did I hear wrong?  Was this a sign to stop the task?  Was this task even worth my effort?  I replayed everything over and over.  I wanted to walk away from it all.  I wanted to scream from the rooftop. It made me feel as though I had lost my voice.

That I was less than…

And should be silenced.

I was angry about that.  Angry, bewildered, and upset with this person. Their choice had created more decisions for me.  The whole situation was mind consuming.  I prayed for clarity.  I wanted to understand, wanted answers, wanted direction…and wanted to blame. I wanted to blame them and those surrounding them.

On September 13th, I read the daily devotion from Jesus Calling by Sarah Young.  And there, in part, were these words:

Give your mind a break from its habitual judging.  You form judgements about this situation, that situation, this person, that person…

And I was stopped.  I felt as though my breath had been knocked out of my body.  As a child, one of my favorite verses was Matthew 7:1 “Judge not, that you be not judged.”  I clung to that verse when I would feel under the weight of judgement.

And here I was, judging them.  I don’t know why they made the choice that they did, but that is not for me to understand.

I then read the devotion that I receive via email written by the women at Proverbs 31 ministries.  In it, a verse was contained that I had been reflecting on the day before:

“And I am sure of this, that he who began a good work in you will bring it to completion at the day of Jesus Christ.”-Philippians 1:6

He has begun a good work in me and he will complete it.  Of this, I am sure.

I ordered some books about a month ago.  I was so excited when I ordered them, and so excited when they came in.  Then school began, and they sat forgotten.  I think it’s because now is the time for me to read them. The one that I’ve started is 5 Habits of a Woman Who Doesn’t Quit by Nicki Koziarz.  It’s based on the book of Ruth.  If you’ve read my marriage post, then you know that verses from Ruth were spoken in our vows.  I’m only a chapter in, but in this moment I know:  I won’t be silenced.  Until God tells me any different, I will continue to pursue that which he has called me to do.

I lift up my eyes to the hills.
From where does my help come?
My help comes from the Lord,
who made heaven and earth. -Psalm 121:1-2

Music and its lyrics always speak right to my soul.  This song has often come on the radio during this time and every word holds so much truth for me.

 

I realize that some of my readers have different religious or spiritual backgrounds than me.  I also have friends who are atheist or agnostic. And if all those overlap and I’m using the wrong terms, I think you get my point. We are all on a journey and I’m pretty sure most humans can get behind the two main things I try to live by (not saying I don’t fail miserably quite often, but I try):

Do not judge & Love your neighbor as yourself.

Here and Now, I will continue to try to shine my light into the world and I hope you keep beaming out your awesomeness!!

Let your light shine!

Amy

 

 

Reflections On The Day Before My Birthday


If the title didn’t give it away, tomorrow is my birthday.

Birthdays always seem a time to ponder and reflect about how far I’ve come and where I’m heading.  What do I want to accomplish?  Am I being true to who I’m called to be?


September 11th is a day of remembrance.  A day forever seared into my reference of the past.  Most of us who were alive in 2001 can recall that day with vivid memory.  My oldest child was 1 1/2 and the middle child less than a month old.  My mother had come over and we were going to head over to my aunt’s a little later for our weekly lunch.  My husband called to tell me to turn on the news because a plane had crashed into one of the Twin Towers.  I turned on the news and watched as a second plane collided with the other Tower.  My mother and I watched in shock.  The world became a very surreal place.  It didn’t feel as though this could be happening.  We would travel to my aunt’s and watch the news with towers on fire, the collapsing, the dust, the anguish.

…And life would be forever be changed.

I had plans for an evening out with friends the next night in celebration of my birthday.  We thought about cancelling, but life continued even in the midst of tragedy (something I would feel firsthand during my oldest’s brain injury).  It was a somber occasion with our thoughts constantly on those hurting and those searching for their family, those seeking answers.  In the days following, we would find relief when somebody was rescued, feel thankful to those whose sacrifice averted even larger tragedy, and worry if another attack would happen.

…And life would be forever be changed.

My husband had a birthday two weeks later. I had planned a trip to North Carolina as a getaway.  But I just couldn’t bear to leave my children to get on a plane so close to the attack.  It was an optional trip and the fear was too fresh.  I still wanted to make his day special so we planned a weekend getaway to Disney World.  We lived in Naples, Florida still so it was a short drive.  The time there was very surreal.  If you’ve ever been to any Disney theme parks then you know that standing in any space empty of people is unheard of.  There were people there, but it felt like you were the remaining people after an apocalypse.  Most people were avoiding places that were typically large gathering spaces, in fear that those places would be a target.  And to be honest, I was apprehensive about being there, but I also didn’t want to stop living.

…And life would be forever be changed.



14 birthdays have come and gone since that day.  Tomorrow I will turn 39.  I had planned to prepare a 40 before 40 list of things I wanted to accomplish.  I made it to number two

And life would be forever changed.

 My words and thoughts remained locked in a place I couldn’t access, my photography visions became stagnant.  It felt like the constant decisions I needed to make would engulf me.  I did the only thing I could do and pressed more deeply God’s promises.  My life verse in this season is:

 

I don’t have all the answers that I want.  I just know that I am faithful that he has a plan.


He always seems to send a word when I need it and when I would get into my car, this song would come on as a great reminder of his daily presence in my life

Reflection is always an important component in life.  It helps you realize what adjustments you might want to make as you continue on your journey.


I hope that you are all having a wonderful day and thanks so much to those of you who took time out of your day to send well wishes and good vibes for my kids to get over the sick bugs they picked up at the beginning of the school year.


Kindness is something we can offer those we pass by on a daily basis.  Even a smile can change somebody’s life.  Be a world changer🙂

 

Let your light shine!

Amy

 

Handwriting

I want to thank Nicky from The Shimmer Within Her for inviting me to participate in this challenge.  Answering the questions in my handwriting.

I have been going from sick kid to sick kid so this was a welcome change.🙂

So without further ado, here are my responses:

My name: Amy

My blog: Bedlam and Daisies

My favorite word: contentment- the state of being happy and satisfied:  the state of being content.

Something nice: A smile costs nothing and can be a priceless gift that we offer.

Favorite song: Time After Time by Cyndi Lauper

Writing with: a purple pen

Fun fact: I write REALLY BIG

Favorite emoticon: 😘. Although I use this one most 😂

Silly message: The best angle from which to approach any problem is the TRYangle.

I ran out of room on who to invite, but anyone who’d like to participate is invited!

It was great to sit down and take the time to think through the answers.  Luckily, they weren’t too hard!  It was also good to write again even if it was just a few snippets.

 

Let your light shine!

Amy

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Thursday Doors – Keys to the Past

There are things known

And things unknown

And in between are the doors.  -Jim Morrison

It’s been a crazy week.  Big surprise in the life of a mom.  I’m still trying to catch up to daily life.  That’s why this week my Thursday Door is on a Friday (to be fair Norm 2.0’s challenge is open until Saturday at noon.  You can pop over and click the blue link to see lots of other amazing doors.)  And who my quote is attributed to is in question.  Did Jim Morrison say it, did Ray Manzarek (also of The Doors) say it, was it written by a publicist, was it influenced by William Blake or Aldous Huxley?!

So many questions.

I always have a lot of questions.  I’m extremely curious by nature.  If I’m interested in a topic, I will check out every book that I can at the library on the subject.  With so much information at my fingertips through my computer, I can delve deeply into a subject.  And that is where I have been.

Let me back up a little.  Last week so many exciting things happened.  We needed a four-wheel drive before winter and I finally found the jeep that I’d been wanting.  The next day the oldest started his first job.  And the day after that my middle child had his birthday.  School started this Wednesday, so a lot of last week after that was rushing around finishing school supplies, getting haircuts, etc.  My daughter had a local soccer tournament over the weekend.  We got there bright and early for day 2 of games and I checked my emails.  And there was the one I’d been waiting to see.

My DNA test was finished.

My husband and I had both taken the DNA test through Ancestry.com because we were curious about our ethnicity.  I wasn’t overly surprised by my results because my mother had already taken the test.  I found out that my estimates are 79% Great Britain (I found it interesting that a typical native there has an estimate of 60%), 10% Ireland, 5% Scandinavia and there were some remaining trace regions.

What I didn’t expect to find so fascinating was that I shared DNA with 430 4th cousin or closer relatives who have also taken the DNA test.  I started looking through them to  figure out how we are related. I have always been a math and science girl and didn’t really care for history and geography, so it came as a big surprise to me that I have found myself completely taken with the investigation process.

Not long ago I skimmed read a book by Mihaly Csíkszentmihályi called Flow:  The Psychology of Optimal Experience.  Being “in flow” or “in the zone” is explained as a mental state of operation in which a person performing an activity is fully immersed in a feeling of energized focus, full involvement, and enjoyment in the process of the activity.  The concept is about being fully immersed in what you are doing.  A state of complete absorption.  That is what this research has been like for me.  I still haven’t connected many dots, but each day I find something new and exciting.

What about you?  Have you ever been completely engrossed in a project?  Or ended up fascinated by something that you thought you didn’t care about at all?

Let your light shine!

Amy

 

 

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Thursday Doors – St. Philips

This week my Thursday Doors, once again, come from our day trip over to Southport, NC.

This church caught my eye as we drove in to Southport.  We were looking for the visitor center so I figured I’d capture a photo of it later.  If you’ll recall, I mentioned in my other Southport door post that the day was sweltering hot.

We had taken the 8:30 A.M. ferry from Ft. Fisher to Southport and as the day got progressively hotter, we were aiming to catch the 2:30 returning ferry.  We ended up wanting to visit a surf shop that we passed, so we figured we’d catch the 3:15.  We had a little time to spare after, and it was on the way,so I wanted to drive past the house that was used for Alex’s home in the movie Safe Haven (there is a pamphlet listing major filming locations).  The GPS wanted us to go down a one way street, which obviously wouldn’t work.  We figured it out and drove past the house.  The owner (or somebody) was on the front porch reading so I didn’t take a photo.  The GPS debacle had us pressed for time so I would not be able to photograph the church.

We got to the ferry and there was a large flashing sign “The 3:15 ferry is full”.  This felt quite stressful because that means there was only a 4:00, 4:45, and 6:15 ferry trip left for the day.  It was now 3:00.

We went back for me to photograph the church, but I also knew that it had to be done quickly because we didn’t want a repeat of the earlier scenario.

The Chapel of the Cross is at St. Philips Episcopal Church.  According to the history at the church website, it was erected in 1843.  In 1865, after the evacuation of Ft. Johnston by the Confederate forces, the Union seized it and used it as a hospital for their wounded.  It was later used as a school for African-American children.  In 1876, the church began to grow again.

The Chapel of the Cross is open for visitation, prayer, and meditation.  I was so disappointed that I did not have time to enter.  I would have loved to have seen the inside and felt the richness of its history as I had some moments of quiet.

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In 2004, St Philips built a new church across from the Chapel.  It was the building housing the bell tower that I had heard chiming.  Red doors always intrigue me.  I snapped a quick photograph and began the quick return to our vehicle.

And that was when I saw this….

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A labyrinth.

I have been wanting to walk a labyrinth since I began my journey (pressing outside my comfort zones) at the beginning of this year.  Time was not on my side that day.  So I did place my feet upon its stones, just to feel the magnitude of stumbling across it.  And then I scurried to our van, which you can see patiently waiting for me in the upper right.

And we made the 4:00 ferry!

I hope that you’ve enjoyed my little excursion.  Thursday Doors is hosted by Norm 2.0.  You can pop over and click on the blue link to see lots of other amazing doors from around the world.

 

Let your light shine!

Amy

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