What’s Your Angle?

deeclarknz.com

What’s your angle?

deeclarknz.com

When we make a move in life, it’s important to understand what is motivating us?

Do you do what you do out of compassion?

Or

Do you do what you do to manipulate?

We choose different angles for different reasons.

Before you act, stop and ask yourself…

What’s my angle.

Choose compassion.

It’s powerful.

Journey on,

D

Cee’s Black and White Photo Challenge this week is Lines and Angles.

Enjoy!

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52 opportunities for a new beginning

IMG_5040.JPGtoday is Monday, one of 52 new beginnings this year…

don’t waste it!

make this a fabulous one!
D

my funny valentine

20140214-183706.jpgthis is my Valentine…his name is Rodney.

funny thing happened today, Valentine’s Day 2014…

when i woke up this morning, he explained to me that he thought about getting me flowers but decided that it was the thought that counted and he reckoned that would make me feel special.

i hugged him and thanked him for the special thought.

i then told him that i had planned a romantic dinner for Valentine’s Day.

“Oh, that will be a nice way to celebrate Valentine’s Day”, he said.

then i added,” but you’ve saved me all that work because after all it is the thought that counts. happy Valentine’s Day, sweetheart.”

he began laughing…”pretty good one!”

it’s 6:30pm and he just left the house to pick up dinner, chocolate and flowers!

ūüėČ

i don’t think he enjoyed his special thought as much as i did mine.

first time in 10 years of marriage that i’m getting a Valentine pressie!

he’s such a funny Valentine!

D

How to be an amazing woman

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how to be a woman of excellence according to Proverbs 31:

1. do not accept mediocracy. apply excellence in all that you are and all that you do.
2. understand your value is priceless.
3. inspire trust.
4. every day do what is best for your husband. never do anything harmful or hurtful. his heart should be safe with you.
5. allow a delightful attitude to govern your work.
6. select the best quality for your available resources.
7. provide for your household’s needs.
8. have a plan.
9. be resourceful.
10. wrap yourself in strength, carry yourself with confidence,and work hard, strengthen yourself for the task at hand. take care of yourself body, soul and spirit.
11. taste success and knows it is good.
12. apply and develop skill to all you do.
13. be benevolent and merciful.
14. be prepared and do not worry.
15. be supportive to your husband’s purpose.
16. use your gifts to produce a quality, marketable product.
17. be strong and dignified.
18. be fearless and smile when you think about the future.
18. conduct your conversations with wisdom.
19. allow kindness to always be your concern.
20. be organized.
21. do not be indulgent and lazy. be selfless with out fear.
22. earn the blessing and respect of your husband and children.
23. understand the limits of charm and physical beauty.
24. be reverent to God
25. celebrate all you have achieved and others will as well.
26. allow your accomplishments speak for themselves.

women have the ability within their design to be strong, independent, capable, and to care for their husband, family, and the poor. i know women who run a household with joy and make it appear effortless. in fact, my mother is this type of woman. as a child, i had no idea what was required to run a household. my mother never seemed to stop, she never seemed cross about the day to day expectations and she seemed to enjoy (and still does) what she did for us. she was kind to strangers and visitors. she seemed to have time for anyone who needed the attention of her heart. she was resourceful to the point that when there was lack, my siblings and i were clueless. i never recall complaints or grumbling. she is the most selfless person i have ever known.

i have many friends like this as well. i have been one who has admired their accomplishments and the lovely, homey atmosphere that they provide day in and day out.

as women, we are challenged to be discontent, to feel dissatisfied, selfish and complaining…and it’s a shame.

nothing worthwhile comes without appropriate effort. we don’t get something for nothing. we must be willing to apply ourselves to achieve the dreams we dream.

the potential within a woman is vast, amazing and valuable. it is a servant role…i did not say subservient…i said servant- a role of service. however, the role of men is a role of service to family and others as well. there are unbelievable benefits to serving one another. it is a rewarding way to approach life.

there is a custom called covenant among the Jewish culture. the purpose of covenant was an exchange -an offering of one’s strengths in exchange for help for their weakness. it is an agreement that what i am, what i have, what i am able to do, i agree to share with you in exchange for all that you are, all that you have, and all that you are. this agreement allowed the two to work together to become a stronger, healthier, better whole unit. each working with their supply and talents to make life better for the other; fully committed, fully trusting, and fully giving.

doesn’t that sound like a desirable goal for your heart? it is for mine…and it is completely attainable!

the requirement for attaining this goal, achieving success and excellence is a good attitude, recognition of our value, applying good work ethic and not complaining about it, resourcefulness, and never being mediocre.

it seems easier to say,”that’s impossible…no one can be that type of woman” and accept that as an excuse. i believe differently…

apply yourself…begin where you are with what you have and you will discover what an fabulous creature you are. you are a woman! you are amazing!

if you know a woman who lives with the goal of excellence, who gives the best she has to offer…encourage her today…sing her praises…let her know that you admire her accomplishments! encourage her to continue to be inspiring and striving for excellence…and allow her to encourage you (this truly is a special benefit of girlfriends).

today, I celebrate excellent women everywhere,

D

the heart’s faith battles the minds fear

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i’m lying here with sleep evading me. visions of my life with my daddy passing through the halls of my mind.

my heart and my mind battling between faith and fear.

i wrote not many days back that life brings sudden changes and that a wise life plan includes a trauma plan. i have many yet from time to time I come face to face with the reminder that i’m not as prepared as i imagined.

today is one of those days.

i called to wish my daddy well as he prepared for heart surgery. the prep work was complete. great! except, my heart had not really conceived an idea close to the prep my daddy had put into place. my contemplations had included well prepared surgeons, physical checks, accommodations, travel and the like. simple little details to check from a well prepared list. everything in order & well organised is a normal expectation from this meticulously detailed man.

i am 10,000 miles away. i expected to feel a tinge of home sickness as this day approached. i was right about that.

the further preparations, that stunned my heart today, were the “good byes”. the “i’m proud to have been your daddy”. what? wait! no, hang on a minute…

i am a strong believer in faith, staying positive, believing it all goes well…and i’m accustomed to encouraging others to cling to the hopeful side of situations.

although my dad is ageing, i really have not prepared myself for “good-byes”. after all, remember my heart still thinks it’s 18 years old; therefore, it’s not entertaining the reality of my daddy’s age and the need for good-byes.

the stark truth – that his preparations included coming to grips with a risky procedure that might go wrong – placed my heart face to face with a possibility of loss.

i have been scrambling through my mental trauma plan file. i have thought through many types of losses; job loss, relationship loss, business loss, loss of aunts, uncles, grandparents, and fianc√©…but nothing that involved my parents.

i learned, after my fianc√©’s death, the importance of not shutting someone down when they speak of death-Craig actually had a dream about the car accident two weeks prior to its occurrence with accurate details.

so, while i was unwilling to accept that i was having a final conversation today, we exchanged tender moments, words and tears.

i choose to hold tightly tonight to my faith and believe – for wisdom and a steady hand for the surgeon. i fully expect to hear that my dad came through with flying colours.

i know that loss is one of the deepest wounds we experience. the process of grief is painful. loss of a career, health, relationship, reputation and of loved ones can all trigger changes to life that are painful adjustments.

maybe, we’ll look at walking toward emotional healing after loss in the near future. after i’ve had some sleep and my daddy is recovering well.

for tonight, i’m urging my heart’s faith to win the battle over my mind’s fear by remaining positive…whispering a prayer…remembering that my daddy (& momma) taught me by example to have courage, never give up & trust that there is always a Divine plan. things will work out just as they should.

life is a journey. today, i felt a little shaky in my steps but i’m still walking. there are days like these…but there is also a promise that…

Joy comes in the morning!

stay strong. be encouraged. never give up!!

thanks for sharing a few moments of your day!

D

a centered heart will allow the springs of life to flow

guard your heart/insight from a woman's heart

long life

health and wellness

a clear and open path

shining like the dawn

reaching full strength

reaching my full potential

are mine

if

i diligently

vigilantly

keep and guard

my heart

for day by day

i’m presented with

opportunites

all within my control

i choose my role

as guard today

and protect

this precious gift

for wisdom centered

in my heart

will give my life

a springing flow

“keep and guard your heart with all vigilance…for out of it flows the springs of life.” Proverbs 4:23

your heart has a melody…let it sing

sing your song/insight from a woman's heart

my song

lifts my heart

cheers my soul

frees my spirit

clears my mind

dispel the darkness of my day

detours my doubts

and

fills me up…

my song.

the melody of me

if your heart gets thirsty, don’t grab the vinegar

my thirst for life/insightfromawoman'sheartdesire. a strong feeling of wanting or wishing for something.

desire fuels dreams. it ignites the heart.

Beethoven’s 5th symphony resulted from the desire sparked in the heart of the writer.

Sir Edmond Hilary conquered Mt Everest driven by his desire to overcome.

my aunt and uncle are celebrating their 70th wedding anniversary soon because desire sustained their love through the years. (70 years…wow…amazing…beyond amazing)

desire believes the possibility of action. action believes achievement worthwhile.

emotionalguage/insight from a woman's hearti’ve said before that feelings are like a gauge in life. understanding their purpose and potential helps me harness my energy in the right directions. it requires developing skills so that my feelings are a working part of the system toward functionality. feelings, like anger and frustration, are labelled as negative but are intended as a warning that something is not working properly. giving my attention to the warning and taking action to fix the problem keeps my overall system/goals on track. suppressing or misusing the emotion often produces adverse effects.

desire is an important part of our system controls. it was designed to motivate us. carry us through difficult times. press us toward goals.

however, a wounded heart can grab desire and pull it into a cycle of addiction. addictions serve as relief from the pain of the wounds the heart is experiencing. our desire for wholeness and self preservation is strong. addiction is like being thirsty and trying to quench the thirst with vinegar instead of water.

broken/insight from a woman's heart

i gained some wisdom on this point from John. in his writings, he shares a memory about a Samaritan woman. Jesus was getting out of town because the religious leaders were jealous and on another rampage. tired and thirsty, he sits down to rest and meets this woman. culturally, He should have dismissed her. her wounded heart grabbed His attention. compassion moved Him. He was physically tired and thirsty. she could help him with that. she was emotionally thirsty and He could help her. there is something very powerful about meeting someone who knows nothing about me yet is able to recognize specific details of my life. it gets my attention. it got the Samaritan woman’s attention, too.

conversation/insight from a woman's heart

basically, the conversation began with the reality that “thirst” is a reoccurring need. a need that can not be ignored. quenching physical thirst is easy. emotional thirst is challenging; therefore, my natural inclination is to reach for a physical solution (easier because i understand my physical world better). this woman had done this. i don’t think Jesus was labelling this woman the way everyone else did. her actions were a symptom of a deeper issue…a wounded heart. a woman in search for significance and love. a woman searching for relief of her pain…loneliness. in that light, can you see yourself in her shoes? can you look inside your heart and see times when you were so thirsty. the temptation for grabbing vinegar (addiction) appearing to be a reasonable solution? her desire for love had sent her on a journey. when disappointed, that same desire changed her path. she was a long path of failed relationships. when one relationship didn’t work…thirst drove her to the next…and the next. i can only imagine her emotional journey. i can understand it because along the way i have reached for physical solutions to the cry of my own wounded heart.

the advice she received was this:

  • unless you deal with the root issue, you only perpetuate the thirst.
  • physical solutions applied to emotional /spiritual issues result in addiction.

during those days, people were looking for “the messiah”. he would change their world. i think Jesus was saying that He came…He was there…in human form. however, the answer was not the fact that He was in their midst. humans eyes see value so superficially. the plan was not to come and set up His kingdom and taken over. people felt like that would have made “the world right” and as “it should be”. i think He was showing us that we were created with all the resources required to live healthy, successful lives. i think He came the way He did to demonstrate how to use this “being” He had created. you know, tell me and i learn in part…show me and i understand the lesson better. He created mankind as an intricate being with great potential. that creation combined with His wisdom was intended to guide the journey called life. in the garden, God came and walked with man. He left the living to the man. man was given everything he needed to exist, including wisdom and guidelines (healthy boundaries). He left the details of how it was walked out to the man. i think Jesus did the same. He demonstrated how it worked.

pathways/insight from a woman's heart

He told us that His kingdom could be summed up as:

  • righteousness (doing things the right way; using the wisdom provided )
  • peace (freedom from disturbance; quiet and tranquillity)
  • and joy (delight, gladness, pleasure-not dependent on circumstances).

He also said that all the instructions in the Bible were about relationship and summed them up as:

  • love God.
  • and love your neighbour (the people around you).

you know…the bottom line…as simple as it gets. equation for success? actioning wisdom the right way + peace + joy + love (for God and man) = successful living.

sounds simple. yet, vinegar (addiction) as distasteful as it is, becomes the alternative we reach for even when we know water (the success equation above) is the refresher.

addictions are a trap. they bring temporary relief. however, they also bring shame. shame brings more pain (the reason we turned to addiction in the first place). increased pain brings increased desire for blocking the pain causing us to reach for the addiction again. except, a principle called diminishing returns applies next. the relief acquired is diminished requiring more of the addiction to satisfy. around and around the cycle goes. physical solutions to a spiritual/emotional issue is always temporary at best…requiring that you repeat those solutions over and over while remaining as thirsty as before.

there are many addictions….some obvious….some culturally acceptable…some not so much. the easiest to recognize and judge (because we tend to be a bit judgemental) are things like alcoholism, drugs, self harming, over eating, outburst of anger, or sexual addictions. the ones more difficult to identify are co-dependency (helping others or a good cause), sports achievements, business success, and even things like ministry or charity. maybe you could add to the list. all designed to distract from the real issue and bring temporary relief. vinegar instead of the real thirst quencher (real solutions).

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so, here is the wisdom is i see in john’s story:

  1. be honest. see the problem for what it is: no more hiding, blaming, or denying it. face up to the truth of how i am living.
  2. find a safe atmosphere of acceptance. Jesus didn’t treat the Samaritan woman like the other people in her life who kept her bound in her shame! He was honest but accepting (which she longed for) and gave her a safe place to open herself up to honesty.
  3. adjust perspective. i need to work through “why i do the things i do”. define the “junk” that i have come to accept as “right” thinking and action. mutual ignorance (enablers) won’t assist in gaining the correct perspective. i need to be challenged.
  4. allow time. i need time to allow change to take place. it’s not quick! i must apply deliberate, consistent action.
  5. ask for help. if appropriate support or medical assistance are required…be humble and meek enough to ASK FOR HELP. humility does not come naturally. it’s a purposeful action. i also pray and look for wisdom as i’ve said before.
  6. be compassionate with “me”. compassion is easier given than received. i need to give myself the break i ask others to give themselves.
  7. don’t give up. deal with the pain. feel it. then challenge it. overcome it.

i get thirsty. i always will. the key is to learn the skill to quench the thirst. my momma taught me to reach for water when i am physically thirsty…not vinegar. i have that one down pat. when my soul and spirit are thirsty…there is an appropriate thirst quencher that won’t leave me perpetually thirsty and cycling in the disgusting taste of vinegar i call addiction.

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before you go…maybe you can help me with my next post. was this helpful? would you like to hear more about the addictions i cycled around in and how i was able to use the above steps to get out of the addiction cycle? if so, stop by and leave me a comment. i’d love to hear from you.

walking/insight to a woman's heart

it was nice to have you stop by,

D

smooth sailing on a monday…YAY!

smooth sailing

i slept in this morning (but it’s Monday).

i woke to a beautiful warm, sunny day…(but it’s winter in NZ).

the ocean was sparkling and beautiful (but there are usually strong winds).

my mind was clear…nothing…just clarity (but there is much i could worry about).

life is good (but not everything is perfect).

so, i went with it…i grabbed hold of the gift. i enjoyed the peace. i enjoyed the quiet calm…i set my sail and let it take me.

today was smooth sailing.

i may have to grab my running shoes tomorrow but today, all that life demands was silenced so my heart could sail.

happy Monday! i hope yours is smooth sailing as well…we’ll take it when it comes…because not all Mondays are like this.

YAY!

D

climbing may be the hardest thing you do…the view is worth the climb

climbing may be the hardest thing you do…the view is worth the climb

“The Climb” I can almost see it. That dream I’m dreaming, but There’s a voice inside my head saying You’ll never reach it Every step I’m takin’ Every move I make Feels lost with no direction, My faith is shakin’ … Continue reading