Monday, September 29, 2014

Making a choice: Life or Death

              As I have begun Brian McLaren's latest book, We Make the Road by Walking, each chapter so far has focused on how we have a choice to make. The choice is whether we will eat from the tree of life or from the tree of good and evil, knowledge. We all know what happened after Adam and Eve eat from the tree of good and evil but do we consider daily what tree we will eat from. If we choose the tree of good and evil then the result will be death but if we eat from the tree of life then we have life. We are alive in this world and in line with the Will of God.

When we eat from the tree of good and evil we position ourselves in the place of God, judge of all things good and bad, and if we look at the world closely it can and does lead to us killing those we deem to be evil and bad.

Is this the world we really want to live in? Do you like what has become of humanity today?

We can do better! We can! Philippians 2:1 - 11 says:

            Therefore if you have any encouragement from being united with Christ, if any comfort from his love, if any common sharing in the Spirit, if any tenderness and compassion, then make my joy complete by being like-minded, having the same love, being one in spirit and of one mind. Do nothing out of selfish ambition or vain conceit. Rather, in humility value others above yourselves,  not looking to your own interests but each of you to the interests of the others.
In your relationships with one another, have the same mindset as Christ Jesus:
 Who, being in very nature[a] God,
    did not consider equality with God something to be used to his own advantage;
 rather, he made himself nothing
    by taking the very nature[b] of a servant,
    being made in human likeness.
 And being found in appearance as a man,
    he humbled himself
    by becoming obedient to death
        even death on a cross!
 Therefore God exalted him to the highest place
    and gave him the name that is above every name,
 that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow,
    in heaven and on earth and under the earth,
 and every tongue acknowledge that Jesus Christ is Lord,
    to the glory of God the Father

Allow me to leave you some words of wisdom from Kid President.

May we LIVE and not be lame.

Wednesday, September 17, 2014

A Discovered Gem

Moving is a chore, a burdensome chore but you can find little gems you have collected along they way as you clean out and pack up. I want share with you a gem I found. I left two bibles unpacked to bring to my work to use while several other bibles and books are packed up till I move November 1. In college I learned a new song at a United Methodist retreat. I must have really liked it because I wrote the words to it in a bible. The words are below along with a YouTube video of a young lady singing the song. I hope this little gem I found blesses you this day.

Bread for the Journey

Give us bread for the journey, give us bread.
Give us bread for the journey, give us bread.
When our legs are getting heavy,
and we're hanging down our heads.
give us bread for the journey, give us bread.

Guide our way as we travel, guide our way.
Guide our way as we travel, guide our way.
There's so many roads before us,
where to go is hard to say,
guide out way as we travel, guide our way.

Make us one with each other, make us one.
Make us one with each other, make us one.
All the walls we built around us,
may we learn to tear them down,
make us one with each other, make us one.

Lead us home to the garden, lead us home.
Lead us home to the garden, lead us home.
Where we'll live with all creation,
find our place and never roam,
lead us home to the garden, lead us home.

Give us bread for the journey, give us bread.
Give us bread for the journey, give us bread.
When our legs are getting heavy,
and we're hanging down our heads,
give us bread for the journey, give us bread.


Sunday, September 7, 2014

10 Things Sophie Taught Me

#10 - The Need for Companionship
See, I don't trust people (rarely if I do) and if I have your trust it can be broken easily. Sophie changed that by teaching me what companionship means and why it is necessary to have to live in this world. Thank you Sophie. I love you.

#9 - How to relax
Prior to getting her I did not know how to relax. My life always revolved around drama, I didn't know how to live without drama. But when she wanted to rest rather than play I rested with her. Thank you Sophie for teaching me how to relax.

#8 - Taking Responsibility
I am a single woman with no children, and I am fine with that. I never saw myself with children because I did not want to take on that responsibility. The curious thing is dog's need their owners to take responsibility for their well-being. Sophie made that really easy. I loved to take care of her. In her last 2 and a half months of life she really needed me to be responsible. By me ensuring she had her medicine at the right time she remained pain free as the tumor continued to grow within her nose.

#7 - Facing your Fears
Sophie taught me that you are never to old to overcome your fears. Sophie hated water when I adopted her and in 2012 I learned she hated any type of bridge that went over or was near water. When we took our trip to Martha's Vineyard I had to carry her onto the Ferry and off of it. In 2013 me and her were walking on the Roanoke green way which runs beside the Roanoke river. That day she crossed not only 1 bridge over the water but 2 for a total of 4 when you count going and coming back. She overcame her fear. I can too. Thank you Sophie.

#6 - How to play
No matter how old Sophie got she loved to play. When ever I was doing things on the computer, work related or more recently school assignments, she would nudge her head up against the computer. That was her way of saying, "Mom, it's play time"


#5 - Live life Now
I always hear people say they are working hard now so they can play hard when they retire. I have always thought that was strange because I had friends who would never make it to retirement, they were dead. While I had Sophie we traveled and moved a lot. Here is a list of the places we have been:

Beaufort, NC

Atlantic Beach, NC


Newark, Delaware

Wickford, Rhode Island

Martha's Vineyard, Massachusetts

Peaks of Otter, VA

Salem, VA

Roanoke, VA

Greenville, NC

Tarboro, NC

Martha's Vineyard

Salem, VA

Peaks of Otter

Beaufort, NC

#4 - The Importance of Trust
When I first adopted Sophie she would not let my father come near her. He fed her and gave her water everyday for two weeks before she would allow him to pet her. She had trust issues, no doubt. Over the years she was on this earth she would come to befriend 4 men. That may not seem a lot but it is a lot further along from where she came from. While I am still learning I have found people that are worthy of trust.

#3 - Be flexible
Since I adopted Sophie in 2007 we have moved 5 times. Every place we moved she made it home. Moving can typically create turmoil within a family pet but Sophie always went with the flow. All these moves represent change in my life and if anyone knows me I HATE change. This is a valuable lesson she has taught me. When you are flexible things seem to be a lot easier.

#2 - Loyalty
I think because she knew I loved her she was always loyal, always protecting me from unknown people who came to our homes. Our world lacks in this area. We all need to know we have a loyal friend so that is what I strive to be to all who I know. Loyal.

The #1 thing Sophie taught me is:


The picture below was taken the day before she died.

At this point she could no longer breath through her nose and her sleep was constantly being interrupted because dog's are not designed to breath through their mouth, though that is what she did. What this picture does not show you is the locksmith who is replacing a deadbolt on my door. Here she is in the midst of struggling to breath watching this man and her normal stance of protection over me. All I can deduce from this is that she not only knew I loved her but she felt it. My love is what compelled her to protect and remain loyal to me, resulting in her to endure what I can only imagine was a difficult and unbearable decline thanks to cancer. 

What I realize is that I can endure anything because I not only know that God loves me but I feel the love of God.