The Importance of Stewardship

  It was love at first site for me. I was totally and completely smitten. Although, not everyone understood why. I’m not sure I did exactly. I think it was a “short-girl thing”. 

My family had moved into a new community my Senior year of high school. I was feeling pretty nervous those first few weeks and months. Until, Warren Mahan drove up one day. My eyes lit up. As soon as he jumped out of the car, I ran over with excitement and intrigue. I knew in that moment that I was in love…

With his car!

What did you think I was talking about? 

He drove a VW Bug and I thought it was the cutest little thing I had ever seen.

Oh, the “short-girl” thing. You see, my parents always drove these huge cars. The kind that look like a cruise liner coming down the road. That was a problem for me. Being 5’1″, I could never see over the hood of the car, parallel parking was a nightmare and feeding the gas tank was like trying to feed a grizzly bear.

But the VW Bug wasn’t like that. It was small like me. I could easily see over it’s nose. Shoot, it even had curves everywhere like I did.

A dream was born in my heart.
I was into my 40’s and had just gone through a pretty ugly divorce when I was finally able to buy my first Bug. (That’s right, I’ve owned two and would have another in a heartbeat!)

I loved that car! I know, it’s not the same as real love but let’s just go with it. I loved that car.

And I was a good steward over that car. I was careful with it. I kept it clean inside and out. I made sure it was serviced regularly. It was my baby and I had waited a long time to have it in my life. I didn’t want ANYTHING to mess that up.

You could say, I was protective. Maybe a wee bit over protective like a father of a newly dating teenage girl. Just Maybe.

However, my stewardship paid off. She was a great little car and everything I had hoped she would be. 

I’ve learned over the years that if you care about something or someone, stewardship is a value key to protecting it. 

Growing too familiar causes us not to give the care, respect and honor that is required. 

You might have a career, a dream or relationship that means a great deal to you. Maintaining it’s value to your life requires that you be a good steward. Sometimes, we have to adjust an attitude or work on our behaviour or give respect or be less selfish. It can be hard work. That’s why courage is required.

The root word “cour” means heart. When we are courageous we go with our whole heart. When we put our heart into something, we give it the very essence of who we are.

It can be easy to lose heart. 

Especially when our heart is broken. And love isn’t the only thing that breaks the heart. However, we can’t afford to lose heart and not protect the things and people we really care about.

Good stewardship is one of the ways of living that I protect. It’s a discipline that has benefited every area of my life.

If it’s worth having, it’s worth looking after.

Do you have an area of your life that could use a little extra TLC? Your health? Your marriage? Your job? Or Your confidence? Your healthy boundaries? Your wholeness?

Even when things are messy, I’ve found that I can turn things around by getting my heart back in the game. A little TLC works wonders.

Dee

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Do You Want Things To Remain As They Are?

  There are always things that are out of our control. But there are also always going to be things that we can take responsibility for and make a difference. 

We never have to allow drama to perpetuate. We can stop the madness. Jump off of the drama triangle. 

We do not have to live in the mud pit of hatred. Overcome evil with good and love and kindness.

We do not have to suffer the pain of bitterness. Forgive. I know. It’s so hard to do but it replaces the stench of being wronged with the beautiful fragrance of freedom.

We do not have to look hopelessly at the darkness, the problems and despair. We can open our eyes to the possibilities, love or the face of God and find hope.

We can accept conditions as they are or we can take responsibility for making a difference.

No excuses.

Brave kindness and stubborn goodness and determined strength and sound foundational wisdom and eternal Love will guide your efforts each step of the way.

Broken

  • deeclarknz.com A friend once gave me a beautiful glass friendship ball. I hung it in the window above my sink where the sun would shine through it lighting my kitchen with beautiful blue hues of colour. While mopping my floor one day, the mop handle hit and dislodged it from where it hung and it crashed to the floor breaking into a million pieces. My heart sank. I scooped up the pieces desperate for way to put the pieces back together. However, that was never going to happen. It was broken beyond repair.deeclarknz.comEvery time my heart has been shattered, I have felt certain that it could never be put back together. And every time , without exception, not only has my heart mended but it has become larger, stronger and more loving for the breaking. A wonderful truth in life is that we are stronger, gentler, more resilient and more beautiful than we imagine. The Psalmist David encourages us that The Lord is near to the brokenhearted and saves the crushed in spirit and heals their wounds. I have found this to be true. Each and every time.deeclarknz.comThe nature of being broken is that perspective is hard to maintain when we are in pain, when in fear, when confused or worried. Brokenness limits our view, for the moment. One of the purposes of love is to help each other not stay limited in our view of life. When helping each other move beyond our limited view of life, we are lifting each other above the pain and reaching for the feeling of health.  

deeclarknz.com“To be broken is no reason to see all things as broken.” -M. Nepo

In my life, I have found that my brokenness eventually became useful in reaching out to other broken hearts. Like seeds broken open and then bear fruit, we can use our broken places to meet each other and be touched by each other. When broken of all the “stuff” that gets in the way of being in touch with others, we begin to know each other outside of our differences in this strange, mutual place of the heart. This is why when we fall, we lift each other; or when in pain, we hold each other; or why when joy floods in, we dance together. It’s a way that the many pieces of the heart loves itself back together.

Lastly, I have come to know that hurting people hurt people. When I come across such a person, they are crying out for understanding, comfort and a safe place to heal. Fire doesn’t fight fire. Nor does pain heal pain. Hurting people need to know that they can trust again, love again and hope again. 

I want my brokenness to open my heart enough that I can reach the hurting with the truth that the Psalmist David shared, that wounds can be healed and that in brokenness there is someone near to help lift them above the painful moments.

The best way to heal a broken heart is not to isolate it and close it down. The best way to heal brokenness, strangely, is the art of continuing to open yourself up. To remember that all of life is not where you are at the moment. To find usefulness in the pieces that remain. To reach outward and yes, upward. 

Even if it doesn’t feel like it today, unlike broken glass, a broken heart will mend. 

D

WordPress Weekly Photo Challenge: Broken  

Some Like It Hot

I definitely am one of those people…I like it hot: steaming hot baths/showers, jalepanos, the heat of the sun and don’t even give me a lukewarm coffee (even worse -iced coffee). Hot is my preference.

At least once in life, we all experience the flame going out. But it doesn’t have to remain dim. All it takes is a little spark of hope and kindness and love and perseverance to fan the flame.

Here are a few quotes that I’m hoping spark a little inspiration for you:

Of all the fires, love is the only inexhaustible one.—Pablo Nerudadeeclarknz.com Great things never came from comfort zones. deeclarknz.com Decide you want it more than you are afraid of it. – Cosby deeclarknz.com No longer bereft, you blaze.—Emilydeeclarknz.com When eyes have died in its gaze, know the heart had died in its blaze. -unknown deeclarknz.com Love what you do so that it sets others ablaze with inspiration. deeclarknz.com Accept things as they are or accept responsibility for changing them.deeclarknz.com Be who you were created to be and you will set the world on fire. -St Catherine of Sienadeeclarknz.com The antidote to exhaustion isn’t rest. It’s wholeheartedness.—David Whyte

The tongue is a little member, and it can boast of great things. See how much wood or how great a forest a tiny spark can set ablaze! -James

One Word Photo Challenge: Hot

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