Finding Grace #62

I love giving God a shout out for what He has done.
We don’t do that nearly enough!

You may have seen the acronym GRACE as God’s Riches At Christ’s Expense. Grace is also God’s unmerited favor, or God doing for us what we cannot.

I find grace overflowing in God’s love, joy, peace, blessings, mercy, power, provision, protection, and wisdom. Thank You, Jesus!

Where did I find God’s love and favor—His abundant grace—this week?

This week we got back into our routine after our road trip. As we returned to Fargo, I noticed bright whites, stunning pinks, and deep purples on all the flowering trees in the community. I don’t have any on my property, but I always enjoy seeing them around. Maybe I will have to buy one for next year!

At my own house, I noticed my maple trees all had new leaves. My tulips also bloomed while I was gone! My neighbor sent me a picture while I was gone, but they are even more pretty in person!

Many of us neighbors have been out in our yards this week. It’s been fun to see all the kids playing again. A year older, they are a little more developed in their social and playing skills. I’m excited for another outdoor season! Today it is in the 80s so the kids are playing with buckets of water, bobbing for apples, and playing in the neighbors’ slip-n-slide!

Today, I mowed for the first time this season. I should have mowed before our road trip last week… but didn’t. So parts of the yard were so high that Lydia and the neighbor kids thought it was wheat. It was ready to sprout! I laughed when one neighbor girl took a pile of the grass home and asked her mom to put her “wheat” in a vase with water. 😉

Finally, this week we traded child care duties with one of the neighbor families, which was really helpful and fun! We each took turns with school pick up and drop off. One night I had a work meeting so they watched Lydia after feeding us a yummy dinner. Then the next night, I watched their boys for a few hours while they had a nice night out.

I’m so thankful for God’s grace!

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These are only a few examples, but God’s grace never runs out!

There’s grace in every situation we just need to look for it. God promises if we seek Him, we will find Him (see Jeremiah 29:13)!

Finding Grace #61

I love the concept of giving God a shout out for what He has done.

We don’t do that nearly enough!

You may have seen the acronym GRACE as God’s Riches At Christ’s Expense. Grace is also God’s unmerited favor, or God doing for us what we cannot. I find grace overflowing in God’s love, joy, peace, blessings, mercy, power, provision, protection, and wisdom. Thank You, Jesus!

Where did I find God’s love and favorHis abundant gracethis week?

This week was jam-packed getting ready for our first road trip of 2017. It’s always hectic trying to pack, clean and prepare the car. I also needed to finish planning our route, make reservations, and make sure everything is good in our absence. Thanks, God, for Your grace, provision, and protection!

We have been spending time with family this weekend, as we mourn the loss of my aunt. She passed away in late January, but her services were delayed until better weather. Our large family needed to have time to make traveling plans. I am so glad many of us were able to get together, comfort and encourage each other, and share good memories.

I am praising God for good weather this week! With road trips, there’s no telling how the roads will be. Rain, snow, or fog can make navigation difficult. Thankfully, we’ve had gorgeous weather every leg of the journey.

Finally, I am thankful for good friends and neighbors who helped watch Lydia this week. With so much going on, I needed to focus. They were instrumental in giving me space and time to think and plan!

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These are only a few examples, but God’s grace never runs out!

There’s grace in every situation we just need to look for it. God promises if we seek Him, we will find Him (see Jeremiah 29:13)!

On Spring Cleaning

I have been doing some much-needed spring cleaning lately. I’ve dusted, washed windows, and reorganized some cabinets. I have cleaned those places that are usually overlooked. I still have a lot more to do, but I feel good about my progress thus far.

I have gone through our closets and removed what we no longer need, donating them or passing them onto friends. In Lydia’s case, I’ve removed items that no longer fit! She’s grown so much, and I am preparing for the next season.

Outside, I have pruned the dead off of certain plants in hopes that green shoots will soon start to grow. I have worked on the garage too, though that is an ongoing project!

Our hearts and lives can all use some spring cleaning from time to time. This could be a time of letting go or moving forward. I like the perspective of making room for new things, though the point is not to acquire more stuff.

In order to grow, we have to release “what was” before we can grasp “what will be.”

In a couple weeks, it will be four years since Dave went to Heaven. Four years of making it on the Lord’s strength. Four years of praying it through, knowing the Lord still has good plans in store for us! Because He is good.

On occasion, I will find something of Dave’s that I forgot about. This might include a book on a random shelf or a tool in the garage. I keep what I can still use, but try to address the rest. For the most part, I find it gets easier as time goes by. But there are days when nostalgia (or another wave of grief??) kicks in and it becomes more challenging.

Like faith, spring cleaning is not for the faint of heart!

Letting go or cleaning house doesn’t always mean we have to physically get rid of anything. Sometimes, the best thing we can change is our mentality. As our attitude shifts, we begin to see things differently. This may even lead to other positive changes!

To start, we can let go of a crazy schedule that no longer suits us. We can embrace the peace Jesus promised us. We don’t have earn His love!

We can let go of anger or resentment, embracing forgiveness and a change of heart. Jesus died to give us total freedom. Bring your turbulent heart to Him.

We can get rid of outdated expectations (our own or those put on us by others). We can pray for God’s perfect timing and purpose, knowing He loves us dearly.

We can purge our hearts of fear and worry. We can trust God to make a way, even if it looks impossible. He is more than able.

We can nix the desire to do everything ourselves, or in our own strength. We can always ask for help. And, we can trust God to do what He says He will do.

We can kick bad habits to the curb. We can praise God for the new life we have in Christ!

We can work to live and not live to work. We can rest, trusting God to protect and provide for us. We can sleep, knowing the Lord is watching over all that concerns us.

We can put on love and pass it on. We can share Jesus with our friends, family, and neighbors! We can make a difference in our communities.

With courage, we can move forward in faith. We can rely on God’s unfailing love and abundant grace. His mercies are new every morning!

Praise God!

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God, You are good and Your love endures forever! Thank You for giving us a fresh start every day. Help us rely on You for strength and courage in every season. In Jesus’ Name, Amen

Questions: Have you done any spring cleaning lately? What did you let go of or remove from your life?

Tasks: As you make changes in your home and life, notice how it makes you feel. Lighthearted? Cheerful? Free?

Finding Grace #60

I love the concept of giving God a shout out for what He has done.

We don’t do that nearly enough!

You may have seen the acronym GRACE as God’s Riches At Christ’s Expense. Grace is also God’s unmerited favor, or God doing for us what we cannot. I find grace overflowing in God’s love, joy, peace, blessings, mercy, power, provision, protection, and wisdom. Thank You, Jesus!

Where did I find God’s love and favorHis abundant gracethis week?

This week flew by! It was fun seeing Lydia’s excitement over her “helpfulness” award. Work went well, though I felt I was constantly a day behind. I got my oil changed at the new Subaru facility. It was like a resort, with coffee, sparkling water, and a host of yummy snacks. I enjoyed the relative peace and quiet, along with the nice environment! 

Just as spring is getting under way and everything is turning green, we had a few inches of snowfall. Thankfully, I covered my tulips so they wouldn’t suffer too much. I figured the rest of my plants were hearty enough to sustain the cold. Sure enough, it’s back to being green and sunny today! I might even need to mow soon.

Lydia and I enjoyed having the neighbor boys over last night. They played while their parents enjoyed an evening out. Lydia slept so well that she didn’t get up until 10:30 this morning! I was able to enjoy my coffee and some quiet time reading. Then, this afternoon, Lydia’s been at their house playing outside!

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These are only a few examples, but God’s grace never runs out!

There’s grace in every situation we just need to look for it. God promises if we seek Him, we will find Him (see Jeremiah 29:13)!

Finding Grace #59

I love the concept of giving God a shout out for what He has done.

We don’t do that nearly enough!

You may have seen the acronym GRACE as “God’s Riches At Christ’s Expense.” Grace is also God’s unmerited favor, or God doing for us what we cannot. I find grace overflowing in God’s love, joy, peace, blessings, mercy, power, provision, protection, and wisdom. Thank You, Jesus!

Where did I find God’s love and favorHis abundant grace—this week?

This week was wonderful! We celebrated Easter and I met a new eye doctor.  We enjoyed our normal activities, too. Lydia learned about Jonah and the whale/fish at school. To illustrate the point, Lydia’s entire class was able to go inside a HUGE blow-up whale. It definitely made for a memorable story!

With the beautiful weather, we spent several afternoons outside with the neighbors. I tackled cleaning the garage, putting out my wind chimes, and putting out patio furniture for the season. A morning rain shower on Tuesday made the grass brighten almost instantly. I also noticed more flowers starting to grow!

At church this week, I met a really cool couple from Chicago. It was great getting to know them better and see what God has done in their lives. We talked about how sometimes people think we are really strong after going through difficult times… But we all agreed that it’s because we’ve relied on God’s strength to bring us through!

I also enjoyed getting together with another friend while our girls were in preschool! She and her younger boys came over to play and catch up. With the beautiful weather, we walked to the neighborhood park.

In fact, I am so thankful for all the connections I had with people this week. I felt useful at work, which is always a great feeling. I was able to pray with another friend and encourage her! I talked with other friends about future plans and events. All in all, I am thankful God knows just what I need!

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These are only a few examples, but God’s grace never runs out!

There’s grace in every situation—we just need to look for it. God promises if we seek Him, we will find Him (see Jeremiah 29:13)!

Finding Grace #57

I love the concept of giving God a shout out for what He has done.

We don’t do that nearly enough!

You may have seen the acronym GRACE as “God’s Riches At Christ’s Expense.” Grace is also God’s unmerited favor, or God doing for us what we cannot. I find grace overflowing in God’s love, joy, peace, blessings, mercy, power, provision, protection, and wisdom. Thank You, Jesus!

Where did I find God’s love and favorHis abundant grace—this week?

This week was good overall! We enjoyed a birthday pool party for a little family friend on Monday. She was born about six weeks before Dave died, so she is quite special to us. We’ve enjoyed seeing her learn and grow over the years. It was fun catching up with her parents and older siblings as well.

We’ve had a beautiful week weather-wise! It was bright and sunny most days, and I happily wore shorts on a few occasions. On Thursday afternoon, I sat outside with a couple neighbors while our kids played together. A few other neighbor kids joined us for riding bikes and scooters, chalk on the sidewalk, snacks, running around, and other shenanigans. An exciting early start to summer!

One highlight of my week was enjoying the serenade of a little finch 3+ days in a row. At first, I thought he was a purple finch. However, later I decided he might be a house finch. Either way, he was red/brown and quite cute. He sang his heart out, without a care in the world! As I listened, I remembered God sees and cares for every detail of our lives.

Lastly, Lydia lost her first tooth! She diligently wiggled it all week and last night, just before bed, it came out. She was very proud of herself. We plan to get some frozen yogurt as a special treat to celebrate this milestone!

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These are only a few examples, but God’s grace never runs out!

There’s grace in every situation—we just need to look for it. God promises if we seek Him, we will find Him (see Jeremiah 29:13)!

Finding Grace #56

I love the concept of giving God a shout out for what He has done.

We don’t do that nearly enough!

You may have seen the acronym GRACE as “God’s Riches At Christ’s Expense.” Grace is also God’s unmerited favor, or God doing for us what we cannot. I find grace overflowing in God’s love, joy, peace, blessings, mercy, power, provision, protection, and wisdom. Thank You, Jesus!

Where did I find God’s love and favorHis abundant grace—this week?

For the most part, this week was fun and relaxing! My sister came to visit for most of the week, so we enjoyed many special activities. While my sister was here, we pre-registered Lydia for school in the fall; saw Beauty and the Beast with friends; had another friend over for dinner; got massages; and did a little shopping. Lydia also got to spend quality time with my sister when I was at work!

As I mentioned in Wednesday’s post, I am especially grateful for God’s grace and forgiveness in restoring relationships (with Him and other people). I’m also thankful for my gracious friend. When it comes to friendships, we have Jesus as the best example of how to love and be kind. Praise God!

We’ve had gorgeous weather this week! I’m glad I saw a few robins! Growing up, we always had a nest of little blue robin eggs in our tree house each spring. So, to me, robins are a tell-tale sign… When I see them, I know spring is here!

Today has been an relaxed day of spring cleaning. I caught up on some reading; Skyped with family; paid some bills; washed the car; did some laundry; and a few other chores. Now, Lydia is outside playing with neighbor friends and I’m on my way outside too! 🙂

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These are only a few examples, but God’s grace never runs out!

There’s grace in every situation—we just need to look for it. God promises if we seek Him, we will find Him (see Jeremiah 29:13)!

Finding Grace #53

I love the concept of giving God a shout out for what He has done.

We don’t do that nearly enough!

You may have seen the acronym GRACE as “God’s Riches At Christ’s Expense.” Grace is also God’s unmerited favor, or God doing for us what we cannot. I find grace overflowing in God’s love, joy, peace, blessings, mercy, power, provision, protection, and wisdom. Thank You, Jesus!

Where did I find God’s love and favor—His abundant grace—this week?

This was a slower-paced week compared to the last few! Lydia was on spring break so we had one less commitment this week. On Monday and Wednesday, I went to work and felt productive. On Tuesday, I worked on personal projects and housework while a friend generously watched Lydia for me. 

On Thursday, my mother-in-law came from Illinois to visit! We’ve had a great time so far. She and Lydia have read books, played games, put together a new LEGO set, and made a special dessert. We also watched a movie and ran to Costco! 🙂 When Lydia went to a neighbor’s birthday party today, my MIL and I went to a specialty tea shop and out to lunch! We always enjoy when she visits…I’m thankful for the encouragement she brings!

Otherwise, not much new to report. The weather here was windy and cold most of the week. Now, it is still chilly but the wind has died down. It’s always good to see the bright sun and blue, blue skies! With the time change, we will be enjoying more and more beautiful spring weather!

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These are only a few examples, but God’s grace never runs out!

There’s grace in every situation—we just need to look for it. God promises if we seek Him, we will find Him (see Jeremiah 29:13)!

Finding Grace #50

I love the concept of giving God a shout out for what He has done.

We don’t do that nearly enough!

You may have seen the acronym GRACE as “God’s Riches At Christ’s Expense.” Grace is also God’s unmerited favor, or God doing for us what we cannot. I find grace overflowing in God’s love, joy, peace, blessings, mercy, power, provision, protection, and wisdom. Thank You, Jesus!

Where did I find God’s love and favor—His abundant grace—this week?

This was a great week! SO many good things happened, I’m not sure I can adequately describe them all. I had many uplifting and encouraging conversations this week. I talked with my boss about some job-related questions. While we didn’t come to any solid conclusions, I was glad to be moving in the right direction. There are good transitions coming and I want to ‘figure it all out.’ Instead, I’ll trust the Lord’s wisdom and timing!

I had some new insights on my volunteer role at church, which made me so happy. I have a lot of passion for that ministry. Interestingly, I’ve seen my skills as a dietitian support my role there! At work, I discuss nutrition, health, and wellness for individuals and corporations. At church, I help people discover where they fit in the Body of Christ (that is, the church) and then I make sure they are spiritually fit and able to keep contributing. So, as the corporate Body, we all thrive, grow stronger, and serve each other, functioning as a whole unit! (I am still in awe of this!)

Tuesday was Valentines Day. Lydia had just about the best day ever, in that she received a few little gifts from me, plus was the class leader at school, had a party there, and won the guessing game! 🙂 I also had a wonderful day. After work, I went to the movies and saw Hidden Figures. I would highly recommend it! I also talked with family and many dear friends throughout the day. I felt very loved!

Last night, Friday, Lydia and I went to a kids’ game night at church. She’s currently one of the youngest and sometimes is a little shy in crowds. So, I was happy to go with her and see things from her perspective. I taught her the basics of foosball, air hockey, and carpet ball. She played with other kids and I met some new families as well. We had a lesson about God’s unfailing love, a snack, and prizes. It was fun!

We had beautiful, sunny, and warmer weather most of the week. I switched seats on Lydia’s bike to prepare it for the next season. She tried it out and was pedaling through puddles from the melted snow! Praise God, Spring is nearly here!

Another bright spot included meeting a writing deadline for a personal project and receiving good feedback on it. I also had good, lengthy ‘God conversations’ with a friend going through a difficult time. We both benefitted that day. Oh, how He loves us!

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These are only a few examples, but God’s grace never runs out!

There’s grace in every situation—we just need to look for it. God promises if we seek Him, we will find Him (see Jeremiah 29:13)!

Finding Grace #10

I love the concept of giving God a shout out for what He has done.

We don’t do that nearly enough!

You may have seen the acronym GRACE as “God’s Riches At Christ’s Expense.” Grace is also God’s unmerited favor, or God doing for us what we cannot. I find grace overflowing in God’s love, joy, peace, blessings, mercy, power, provision, protection, and wisdom. Thank You, Jesus!

cherry-blossom

Where did I find God’s love and favor—His abundant grace—this week?

  • This week was all about relationships. I had multiple meaningful conversations each day of the week. Deep conversations are my most favorite way to connect with people, so I was thrilled! I talked with neighbors, fellow writers, church friends, moms, widows, and old college friends, among others. We made changes on projects, made new plans, discussed difficult phases of life, and just caught up on other things. With the plethora of people I talked with, I felt the Lord was reminding me that I am not alone. And, I impact other people’s lives, too. We’re all in this together!
  •  I have been praying about and reflecting on the third year mark of my late husband’s death, as mentioned in my last two Wednesday posts (here and here). I’ve noticed each time I read my Bible, I come across at least one scripture verse that says God is our refuge, shelter, strength, and shield. Isn’t that cool?! Actually, I just realized this pattern a day or so ago, but it has been going on for the last few weeks.
  • It seems as that anniversary of Dave’s death grows closer, the magnitude of God’s grace and love has increased. It’s as if He is pulling out all the stops to encourage me! Not only has the Lord surrounded me with an increase of amazing people all around, but He also has reminded me that He is My Refuge, My Protector, and My Defense.

“But I will sing of your strength,
    in the morning I will sing of your love;
for you are my fortress,
    my refuge in times of trouble.

You are my strength, I sing praise to you;
    you, God, are my fortress,
    my God on whom I can rely.”

Psalm 59:16-17

  •  I love all the flowering trees in Spring. I wish they could last all year, they’re so pretty! To think that each type of blossom or tree reflects only a small part of who God is (not to mention the diversity in everyone and everything else)… What beauty and creativity! God you are so good to us!

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These are only a few examples, but God’s grace never runs out!

There’s grace in every situation—we just need to look for it. God promises if we seek Him, we will find Him (see Jeremiah 29:13)!

Where did YOU see or experience God’s grace this week?