Balance

Getting past the storms to Pure Joy

As I lay in bed, listening to the storms in the early morning, that have finally come to relieve us of our 100 degree July days, i think about the storms of our lives. How do we survive? How do we move forward each day in the storms? I know with each storm comes green grass, flowers and new growth. So here are some of my thoughts for moving past the storm and into the light!

1.  PRAY – only when we begin to awaken do we realize that we were asleep. Sometimes we need to be alone to reflect on life, take time to pray and take care of yourself inside.

2. SMILE – as much as possible, whether life is joyful or not, a smile will lift your day as well as others. You can change someone’s day, as well as your own with a simple smile. You are always free to do what makes you smile because a smile shows the true depth of your soul.

3. ATTITUDE- be positive, never allow a bad day to change your mood. Don’t look at what you’ve lost, look at what you have.

4. GRATEFULNESS- focus your energy on what you have in your life, not what you have lost. Remember there are others with much less than you.

5. SHARE – your happiness with others, through your actions and your words. You will never regret helping someone else’s life.

6. COMMUNICATE – talk to others and release your worries and anxieties so that you can move past anything that is weighing on your heart. Then you will be able to move beyond it to a brighter life.

7. HAPPINESS- can be created in your present, don’t think it’s something you’re planning for your future. The happiness you experience each day is determined by the love you share. Be yourself, it’s the best way to be happy.

8. GOOD FRIENDS & FAMILY- are worth their weight in gold, treasure those healthy relationship and trust in their love for you.

9. FREEDOM- to walk away from negative situations, be in tune with your feelings, don’t question your gut just walk away for your happiness. One of the greatest freedom is not caring what others think. If you worry about what others think of you, they own you. Be your own self.

10. TEMPER – your anger, words can hurt so much deeper than physical pain, stop and think before speaking in anger. You are always in control of your thoughts, be confident and kind, not mad and insecure.

11. CHANGE – something you don’t like, if you can’t change it, change the way you think about it. Let go of the need to always be right and you will change to be happy.  Life does not have to be perfect to be wonderful. Sometimes being open to change will allow a magnificent event to come into your life.

12. DREAM – about what you want to be, then go do it.  Good things come to those you pursue it with happiness and love. What you believe has more power than what you wish or hope for.  You become what you believe. Be open to dreams, hope and joy.

13. FORGIVE – yourself and others, it takes time and patience, but you can heal emotionally to create love in your life.

14.WEALTH – can’t by happiness, it’s nice to have material things, but don’t loose track of the things money can’t by, those are the true treasures in life.

15. LAUGH – because life will never be perfect, but it is wonderful. Don’t try to control everything, relax, breathe, let go, live in the moment and laugh.

16. KNOWING YOURSELF – is truly believing and living as yourself. With so much social conditioning and pressure in our society, we can forget who we are. Stay true to yourself in all situations.

17. BLESSINGS – fill your life, learn to see blessings in everything. The close parking spot, the unexpected call from a friend, the food before you, the smile of a stranger, or the hug of a loved one, embrace every blessings and share them with others. Satisfaction is not always the fulfillment of what you want; it is the realization of how blessed you are for what you have

18. PASSION – in our lives is important, discover what you are passionate about and do it. Whether it be crafting, fishing, dancing, reading, cooking or meditating, discover it and summerge yourself into it to give your life passion

19. EMBRACE – people, situations and life as it comes…storms or bright days. Each day has a lesson for us to learn. Always learn the lesson and grow.

20. LOVE – it’s all you need, time spent on worry and hate sucks your energy. Center in love and know that you are loved, write your own love story every day. John and Paul had it right…the love you take is equal to the love you make.

Categories: Balance, Gratefulness | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

Balancing Life and Faith

Balancing life and  Faith has been the name of my blog for over four years and this stunt really puts those words to the test.

Last month, Nik Wallenda completed something no one has ever done. 116 years ago, someone did walk across Niagara Falls on a tight rope, but never this close to the falls. With the water misting and affecting his vision and the winds pushing Nik more than he anticipated, he accomplished what no one else have ever attempted. But as a seven generation tight walked he was up for the challenged and worked years to make his challenge a reality.

He balanced his life and prayed the whole way across. Truly, physically balancing life and faith, or maybe balancing your life by faith.

When Nik was interview with ABC and the image of him praying before his wall was a beautiful image we need  more of on television. With God all things are possible and with faith mountains can be moved, it’s great to see that on tv too.

What is your Niagara Falls , what is your mountain?

Maybe it’s a challenging job or teenagers in your home. Maybe your mountain is an illness or family discontent, whatever the mountain, even with faith the size of a mustard seed you can move mountains.

Don’t ever give up on your goals in life, be vigilant  in prayer and bring all your petitions to the Lord. And you too can cross the gap and balance your life and faith.

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Connecting

Have you ever looked at the internet tab as you are waiting for a site to download? Did you notice it says connecting and swirls until it connects to where you want to go?

Day 5 - Lunch at Panera Bread

Photo credit: ohdearbarb)

Connecting…

Sometimes the internet connects quickly and we are so happy we did not have to wait and wait. Sometimes is seems to take forever to connect.

Are we like that too? Do we connect quickly with others or is it hard for us to connect to others? Can we slow down our lives to make time for others? This past few weeks I have spent so much time connecting and reconnecting with friends. The visits and talks we have had over tea, lunch or dinner have been amazing. And the meals delicious!

My best friend from grade school and I had lunch last week after years of a Christmas card friendship as our children were growing. Even though we only lived twenty minutes apart our life path took us in different directions. Thank goodness for the connection of Christmas cards each year. She picked me up and I don’t think we stop talking and catching up for the three hours we visiting and ate Panera’s soup and sandwich.

What about Facebook? Sometimes a “friend” uses FB as an outreach for help through a rough time, sometimes it to share good news or daily moods, and sometimes it reconnects relationships. Summer of 2010 was a high school reunion year for me. The committee posted the reunion event on Facebook for all the classmates to respond. It was so good to see so many classmates at the reunion and then to keep connected with them through their posts and pictures. I love celebrating the pictures of some that are already grandparents (unbelievable, since I don’t feel old enough to be a grandparent) and some that have children graduating. I enjoy FB for the way it connects me to near and far away friends.

Connect through calls, visits, and cards. Share a comment on how you connect with those in your life.

So now the next time you look at the internet tab that is swirling around waiting to connect, pause and realize how many connections you have in your life and how you can foster those connections each day.

Call a friend and have a Panera lunch…
Embrace life and laugh with someone…and CONNECT!

Connecting..

 

 

 

Categories: Balance, Gratefulness | Tags: , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

Sharing the sun with my sister in Shanghai

bartonstravels

This week we had great weather in Shanghai. I was riding my bike when I realized I am spoiled. Weather like this week is common-place in Colorado. Colorado claims to have over 300 days of beautiful weather. I like it here. I could live here longer. But I love living in Colorado. I am spoiled.

I did feel like the warm weather made everyone here happier. People seemed to be smiling and enjoying life. Does better weather make people happy? Or does it make me happy so the world looks brighter?

Chinese people are pretty serious and with nicer weather they are definitely outside joining being outdoors more. Why do they like to be outside? It is very social to be outside. People still go for a stroll or exercise by walking briskly and slapping the sides of their bodies to help with circulation. (at least I think that is…

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Hold my hand

holding hands - age 10, and age 8

holding hands – age 10, and age 8 (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

IntimacyI remember someone asking my husband and I during the first few years of our marriage what is Intimacy? The definition we both first conjured up in our minds was mostly physical. But as we matured and grew, our understanding of intimacy grew also. Our relationship has grown throughout our 27 years of marriage. Like most couples we began with a physical attraction that grows into a deep love that was never imagined when the “I do’s” were exchanged.

We have raised babies, bought homes, owned a business together. We have survived arguments, financial challenges, unemployment, loss of our fathers, and much more in our years together.

We have learned to communicate

We have learned to listen

We have learned when to hold each other

We have learned to just “be” with each other

My children think we are too affectionate towards each other, because we truly enjoy each others company (and like to kiss and hold hands). But when you get either of them alone, they admit they like the fact that their parents are still attracted to each other and still are in love with each other. My expressive Italian husband is very passionate about life. When he laughs, its genuine and heartfelt. When he enjoys a good meal, he soaks it all in, from the smells to the presentation to the taste. He is passionate about his family – giving, kind and loving. Passionate is the word I would use to describe him.

He is not perfect, but he is perfect for me.

I love the way he holds my hand in his, I feel so safe, so loved.  I can spend all day just hand in hand with him.

I pray every person could experience the trueness of love from someone else. I know there is a lot of hardship in the world, but sometime we just need someone to reach out and hold our hand. Recently, I received some hard news, and the person who explained everything to me, sat next to me and held my hand. I remember looking at her hands and thinking, it’s exactly what I needed, I needed human touch as I was told this. Then I prayed for all the people who live days, weeks, months and even longer without human touch, without the intimacy of someone knowing them and being present for them. I felt sad, but not for me, for all those without another presence in their life.

My life is blessed in so many ways. I will survive my hardship no matter how thin the rope I’m hanging on to becomes…because I have a loving family always ready below to catch me and carry me until I can walk upright again.

As a youth minister, I have helped many people through churches, retreats and worktours. But when this caregiver held my hand, I realized the importance of always, continually, without ceasing, reaching out to touch others.

May your day open your eyes to the opportunities to hold the hand of another and know the true meaning of intimacy.

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