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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  We all have that someone. Let me be honest, I have been that voice before. In my brokenness, I was guilty of being a voice with the wrong message. Here’s the horrifying thing about that message: it echoes on long after I forgot what I said, long after I have moved on and longer than I ever imagined.

How do I know?
Because, someone once spoke a similar message to me. That message shows up every time I need to be courageous and brave.
It’s designed to make me doubt myself.
Silence the “You are not enough” message. 
Don’t doubt yourself. Be courageous. Be compassionate (to yourself). Be brave.

Our Past Can Be A Light For Others

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maybe you are not ready to let your pain help heal the community. the gift of healing shared inspires. it is difficult to find courage following pain, especially with deep wounds.

consider this. if overcoming your wounds to inspire others in your community (or as I call it your circle of influence) is too much to consider, how about doing it for your children?

effects of emotional wounds are evident in people world wide, true? you may witness this truth in people in your community, city, region and even closer than that…your family.

maintaining well-being through difficult times and healing emotional pain provides light/life skills for your children. you provide them a better future. what a wonderful gift. our children need to learn wisdom, courage and decision making skills in order to prevent emotional wounds. if pain is not averted, they need to know how to heal properly.

the Hebrew story of Joshua and Caleb who were sent with 10 other men as spies, tells us that they came back a bit ambivalent. it was a beautiful place with amazing produce. they found giant fruit- grapes that required two men to carry. amazing. exciting. they had never seen anything or any place like it.

a little problem existed. along with those giant grapes were giant people. it scared ten of the men but Caleb & Joshua had nothing but courage and faith. they had seen far too many proofs in their journey that they were not alone. they also had seen seemingly hopeless situations turn around in ways that would blow the human mind. they were like, “we can do this…let’s take ’em”.

as a result, they received this promise:

The land on which your feet have walked will be your inheritance and that of your children forever

when all was said and done, the time came for the rewards to be passed out. Caleb went to get what was promised to him. problem was, he had walked over all the land. so, he chose the part he wanted. he said, “give me that mountain over there.” why? there was probably easier land to claim.

he wanted the mountain where the giants lived! he was going to do what he knew he could have done from the start…defeat the giants! he did, too.

when his daughter married, he gave her husband a piece of dry land. she was fine with that; however, because her daddy had been bold and courageous, there was boldness and courage inside her as well. knowing that her family would need water, she requested springs to go with the dry land. i wonder if he chuckled before he granted her request knowing that he had taught her well?

the courage and strength you use to walk your journey, even when painful, is a gift to your children. you teach them to be fearless, strong and willing to get through their difficult places to the place where there is blessing, life and well-being.

you may think they are not even getting “it” but believe me, they are and as they become adults…it will be like looking in a mirror.

be willing to move beyond your darkest hour…bring it to a place where healing can become a reality. lighten your heart’s load. you are not alone. Light, Truth & Love will meet you on the journey in miraculous ways that add strength to your courage and actions.

the places you walk through and overcome will be beneficial to your children in ways you could not imagine.

do you have a mountains where giants live?

“take ’em!!”

Anything could happen…and it might be suddenly

anything could happen/insight from a woman's heart

i like suddenly…

i agree, there are times when it’s not a great thing.

oh, but when it is…

i am running along and suddenly, i get my second wind.

i am attempting to correct a mistake in my accounts and suddenly, it dawns on me where the mistake has been.

i am pleading my case on an issue and suddenly, the other person gets the point.

i have tried to forgive and suddenly, i realize the event doesn’t have the hold on me like it did.

i am believing and standing in faith and suddenly, i have an answer.

the funny thing about suddenly is the unexpected realization that what you have hoped for is here…now.

you never know how close you are to your answer.

so be prepared…

anything could happen

and it might just come suddenly!

D

2 tips guaranteed to improve peace of mind

rocktime/insights from a woman's heart

rock time. that’s the term my bff and I coined for quiet, reflective moments on a rock in a peaceful environment. essential elements: the rock, two open hearts, nature, our book of values and wisdom (Bible), a journal and sunshine (sunshine…beautiful sunshine…we all know how refreshing turning your face toward the warmth of the sun can be). man, would i love a little rock time with my bff…i miss you, lori!

nature will teach valuable lessons about peaceful existence…just watch. the bird in the photo above has stopped for a few moments of quiet reflection. he’ll be hurrying off soon enough but for this moment…just quiet, peaceful, rest.

it is very easy to find the heart and mind troubled, disturbed, and dis-quieted. goodness, the entire world around us uses our heart and minds to press us to dissatisfaction, longing, and desire. marketers count on the fact that the heart and mind will long for more and present us every message possible to convince us that we aren’t enough, don’t have enough, we aren’t smart enough, and that we lack “something”. think about he story of the garden of eden…that is exactly what the serpent used on eve. basically, “yeah, you have it pretty good. the garden is ok but it’s really not all that great because you don’t have….” boom! dissatisfaction hit her heart and thirst and longing for more filled it. it worked then…it works now. i need more money. i need more education. i need a better job or boss. i need a better husband. i need more blog readers. THEN i can be happier. what a lie. talk about throwing your heart and mind into a frenzy…

i have 2 tips that are guaranteed to improve your peace of mind. remember, i don’t believe in magic wands. i believe in wisdom and good ole elbow grease. rolling your sleeves up, looking at the pain and applying deliberate (on purpose) and purposeful (truly beneficial) action. would you like to hear what they are?

what are they?

so glad you asked!

Tip #1 : fix (focus) your mind on these things. yip (i love NZ slang), discipline. de-clutter your mind. out with the old-in with the new.

  • whatever is true (real~ genuine~ actual)
  • whatever is worthy of reverence (deep respect)
  • whatever is honourable (respectable ~ reputable ~ honest)
  • whatever is just (quality of being fair and reasonable)
  • whatever is pure (clean ~ clear~ absolute)
  • whatever is lovely and lovable (exquisitely beautiful ~ fair ~ inspiring ~deserving of admiration)
  • whatever is kind (nice~ good~ gentle)
  • whatever is winsome (engaging~ attractive)
  • whatever is gracious (courteous~ merciful~ benevolent~ benign)
  • virtue (merit~ goodness)
  • excellence (outstanding quality)

-paul to the Philippians

step one: fix (focus) your mind on this list of things by thinking about them, weighing your thoughts against them, and consider them.

step two: practice. any new skill requires practice. so -you practice. practice. practice until these things fill your mind and thoughts more naturally than worry, frustration, anger and whatever else keeps your mind agitated. while you are practicing, take notice of how your body, soul and spirit react to each type of thoughts. try this: think of a situation that really got you angry. rehearse it for a minute in your mind. did you feel all the reactions? pretty bad…negative. now think of the happiest moment you can remember in your life: rehearse it in your mind. did you feel all the good reactions? if i think about holding my daughter or one of my grand babies for the first time…i involuntarily smile. i can’t help it. those moments were so joyous to me. both sets of thoughts cause a reaction in my heart and mind. i don’t enjoy the negative reactions but i am uplifted by the good, positive ones.

result: peace(untroubled, undisturbed well-being)- will be with you. tip #1…can immediately improve your peace of mind for the moment. with practice it will improve your peace of mind consistently.

Tip #2: be content. be satisfied to the point of where i am not disturbed, troubled, anxious, or uneasy. two sets of circumstances present themselves in our lives…lack and abundance.

  • lack – living humbly in straitened (narrow, lean) circumstances. this one makes our skin crawl. no one wants to go without. in fact, having the basic needs of food, shelter and clothing are imperative to survival. when faced with this circumstance our instinct for self preservation kicks in and moves us toward ways to survive.
  • plenty-living well-fed, having sufficient supply with enough to spare. this one makes life so much easier. we enjoy and revel in this circumstance. it is not hard to have peace of mind in this circumstance. it does not guarantee peace of mind though. there are many examples of wealthy, miserable people.

the key is to find the undisturbed place for your heart and mind through contentment. i was amazed how content my heart was following the corporate take -over of our company a few years ago. yes, yes…there was anger and grieving and crying. i am human. lol. i told you in my overcoming addiction blog that i have had many negative situations to face in my lifetime. i sat with the emotion and shock when we discovered there was no way out…this situation was inevitable. once i had taken the time i needed to get my head around what i could not change, felt the pain and released it (crying, praying, screaming…there was a wide range of emotion)-i had to settle my heart. my heart was disquieted and disturbed. i did not want to live my life long term in this state. i enjoy peace of mind. i crave peace of mind. i began to go through the list above…

  • what is true? my life is not over. i can get up and start again. true!
  • what is worthy of reverence? the God-given blessings that i had enjoyed while i had that business…living in plenty…and that now i did not want to be a “brat” about difficult circumstances. respect!
  • what is lovely and kind? mercy. let me tell you right now…i had to grab hold of my heart and mind and inform them both that i fully intended to show mercy. non-negotiable…non-negotiable. revenge is an ugly, ugly trap. eats at you like cancer, too.
  • and on and on down the list i went.

it was a painful time. however, in the end we were debt-free. we didn’t have anything. we didn’t owe anything, either. i found myself very content without financial pressure. in the midst of that trauma, both my husband and i determined that we would never walk under the bondage of debt again. we were able to find contentment for what we had, when we had it ,in order to preserve that peace of mind. we began to practice lots of positive behaviours to maintain contentment and the resulting peace of mind.

contentment is a very difficult. practice. practice looking at and seeing what you are, what you have and where you are at the moment with respect and honor. decide that there is a right time for everything in life (under heaven). learn the lessons. lack teaches us to be resourceful and frugal; to appreciate and develop better stewardship. it helps us be empathetic to the needs of others and addresses arrogance. it’s not fun but it can be powerful.

take your “well-being” pulse right now? are you disturbed and disquieted? consider my two tips for improving your peace of mind.

please, share a comment with me if you find these tips helpful. Come back after you have practiced them. i would love to hear about your results.

peace,

D

When Courage Doesn’t Roar

courage/insight from a woman's heart

be strong and courageous.

do not be terrified; do not be discouraged,

for the Lord your God will be with you

wherever you go.

Joshua 1:9

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or

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YOU’VE GOT THIS….

you can make it happen!

afraid?

Stare fear in the face and DO IT ANYWAY!