Content.

For the last 21 days I have been working through a devotional journal that will take a total of 100 days to complete. Each page is full of God’s promises to us and has challenged me to reflect on my own life. I have been so inspired by how others are using this journal, that it pushes me to dig deeper into each promise He has given us.

img_6011Today the topic was about being content. This is something that I have been struggling with a lot with lately. I look around me and see where others are in their life, too often I it makes me feel disappointed and frustrated with my own. I know that these feelings should not bring me down, yet at every turn they do. It feels like each stranger that I meet has it figured out. Logically I know that is far from the truth, but these irrational thoughts eat at me more than I’d like to admit.

I do my best to look at the good things in my life. The small successes and the great future He has set before me. Each day I try my best to be content in what I have, and not long for what I want, but unfortunately I struggle daily. I am a work in progress, and hopefully tomorrow I will be more content than today.

Tomorrow will be a little bit easier and I will become a stronger me everyday.

Advertisements

Impossible

The most difficult thing we can do is face our fears. At times it feels like an impossible task to step out of our comfort zone into a situation that we are not entirely sure how we will react or what impact it could have on us. But the good thing is that impossible is what God does best. When our hands are shaking and our heart feels like it might pound out of our chest He always has a guiding hand to help us find the correct path.

Carry each other’s burdens, and in this way you will fulfill the law of Christ.
Galatians 6:2

Each of us can be an instrument that God can use to impact others. Maybe we are the friend that gets a text, a smile for a stranger, or shoulder to cry on. Possibly we are the person that some one who hates to touch actually gives a hug to. In the end, no matter what we all have an impact on each other and each of us have helped others overcome their impossible.

Tomorrow will be a little bit easier and I will become a stronger me everyday.

 

Roller coaster.

I have never been a huge roller coaster fan. Early on in my teenage years I learned that the whip-lash was not worth any excitement the rides might bring. Yet since early 2017 I feel like I am stuck being forced to ride a never-ending roller coaster without knowing what drop or rise will come next. Every time I think I have finally moved on to a more enjoyable place I find myself dropping once again. Maybe this is how life has always been, full of never ending ups and downs and now since I had such a drastic drop I am simply more attune to the fluctuations. Truthfully I am hoping this is just a moment in the vastness of life and in time a smoother path will overcome the current state of things.

He gives strength to the weary and increases the power of the weak.
Isaiah 40:29

As always, all we can do is pray and hold on to faith that God has a purpose for each trial we face. I hope each heart dropping event that leaves us aching for understanding has a reason. Every tear we cry is healing wounds. Feeling this way is never anything I want to get used to, but with each drop I am learning to be strong and to relying on His grace to carry me through is.

Tomorrow will be a little bit easier and I will become a stronger me everyday.

Stacks of letters.

Usually a stop at the mailbox means bills, junk mail and maybe some kind of advertisement. Honestly, most everything that is delivered to me on a weekly basis goes right into the trash. In this day of technology we forget the simple art of writing a letter. It is too easy to pick up our phones and send a text, email or message on any number of social media platforms. We are too quick to go to our keyboards before picking up a pen. For this reason the next generations will never be given a stack of letters written by their parents or grandparents, and that is a shame.

I never remember having a pen pal as a kid, but not long ago I was reminded of the joy of sending things through the mail, and now I am hooked. The inspiration actually came from a few sources almost simultaneously. The first, ironically, is a Rebecca, friend I met on social media who is a big lover of letter writing. She would post pictures of the amazing things she received and I was envious. The second influence was a selection of letters my grandparents wrote while they were dating. Reading those letters you can see their relationship grow as they fall deeper in love with each other.

 

My friend, Rebecca is the creator behind Grace & Salt ink, a small business in England specializing in leather travelers journals. One of her promotions is a challenge called “I sent love in an envelope”. This challenge was a huge inspiration to create and find some pen pals. I have written letters to friends and family, and sent out packages near and far. Each envelope I send out  is adorn with the hashtag #ISentLoveInAnEnvelope. Sometimes I get something mailed back, but most of the time I get a text message or social media response. Either way I truly hope getting something in the mail makes the recipient smile and feel loved.

“Therefore encourage one another and build one another up, just as you are doing.” 1 Thessalonians 5:1

img_5029Since I started my crusade of letter writing I have gained pen pals from South Africa, Germany, England and across the country. Some of them are old friendships expanded to letters, others are people I only know from the pictures they post on Instagram. I always look forward to checking the mailbox each day to see if there are any goodies from near or far. Not only do these letters serve as a way to communicate, but also to be creative while still working within the confines of an envelope. Every letter I look forward to see what I will find inside. I have received pictures, washi tape, creative little pieces and so much more. Each letter challenges me to come up with new ideas to put a smile on their face, and I do my best to send letters that inspire.

img_5200img_5203As my list of pen pals has grown I was having a difficult time keeping up with the coming and going of letters. In my search to find a solution I came across people creating journals to track their pen pals. To me this was the perfect solution, and so a new journal was added to my inkDori and the tracking began. I decided to keep my tracking simple, I list the pen pal, if I sent or received, the date and notes. It is fun to watch the page fill up with each letter.

My upcoming letter writing adventure will be starting in April. I have decided to take up the challenge of writing to one person a day for National Letter Writing Month. That means a minimum of 30 letters in 30 days. If you are thinking this seems like an intimidating task, I agree with you, but I am hoping with some pre-planning and organization it will be achieved.

img_5221My first step was to create a plan. I knew on the average day I would not have time to write a letter, so I decided to send out postcards. In the words of Lord Byron, Jane Austen, Lewis Carrol and Phyllis Theroux I found inspiration. Each quote embraces the best parts of letter writing and I am excited to send them out to friends and family each day. Second, I started a tentative spreadsheet with names and address of those to send letters to. I am sure before April gets here I will end up adding a few extra names to the list, but I am happy to have a starting point. My hope is that if there is a plan in place that I will be able to follow through on the 30 day challenge.

I know I will never have stack and stacks of letters like my grandparents, but hopefully I will have something tangible to share with future generations to show that letter writing is not dead.

13126020

Visit Grace & Salt ink on their website at graceandsaltink.co.uk 
and follow them on FacebookInstagramTwitter • Pintrest

Brave.

For the past few weeks I have felt out of sorts. I think the anticipation of the year marker really terrified me. I have been so overwhelmed by the outpouring of love I have gotten over the past few weeks from friends and family. I got cards in the mail, encouraging comments and direct messages in varying forms. They say it takes a village, and I love the community that I have.

2 Timothy 1:7
For God did not give us a spirit of fear. He gave us a spirit of power and of love and of a good mind.

The last 12 months was about being strong, and my friends and family were a huge part of making that desire a reality. Now I feel like I am striking out into the unknown once again as I work on being brave. There is still much I have to learn, but I feel well prepared and ready to take on whatever comes my way.

Tomorrow will be a little bit easier and I will become a stronger me everyday.

Love, support and prayers.

For the third time since my own life changing event I find myself having to watching a friend go through a tragic loss of their own. Even after all this time I don’t know how to string words together to provide comfort. I honestly am not sure what was said to me that I took solace in. So much of the weeks to follow that day are a blur to me.

Psalm 9:9
The LORD is a refuge for the oppressed, a stronghold in times of trouble.

What I do remember is the most important thing was to know that people were there and praying for me. I have felt and continue to feel so loved. That has helped more than I can say. So here I sit feeling wordless and sad but sending all my love, support and prayers knowing that there is truly only one person that can provide the comfort needed and whisper the right words at the perfect time.

Tomorrow will be a little bit easier and I will become a stronger me everyday.

Understanding.

Maybe it is a sense of understanding that I am still subconsciously searching for, it is unknown to me. I know understanding is unnecessary and a countdown to someday is a silly thing to want. Yet here I sit typing day after day searching for some kind of magic phrase that brings it all together. Maybe far in the future I will re-read some of these posts and I will be able to tell the day that everything changed, but I doubt it works like that.

Proverbs 3:5-6
Trust in the LORD with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways submit to him, and he will make your paths straight.

There have been so many days that I think I am past it all, and others that I wonder. I have a feeling that the next eleven days will be a huge hurdle for me. So many times over the past year I have thought what occasions and holidays could have been, but the year mark is the one I have been dreading the most. I wish there were no more tears to cry. I wish I could shut myself down and restart when it has past, but if there is one thing I have learned above all else is that things must be faced head on. I know that I can survive this, because I have made it thought the storm.

Understanding does not bring peace, it just holds knowledge. I already have all the tools I need, I have developed them, honed them and had plenty of practice. This may not be the home stretch, but it is an important part of the race and I will come out victorious.

Tomorrow will be a little bit easier and I will become a stronger me everyday.