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Monthly Archives: January 2014

Vegas, Baby ; )

Red Rock Canyon

The thought began in Winter, amongst the brisk morning air here in the South – and YES, it gets very brisk!

The idea was also being dreamed about by a friend in the {dreadfully} frigid Midwest.  It was all about an excursion to some place WARM!  A chance to see each other after a very LONG 20 year gap between visits.  Our thoughts combined to form a trip to Las Vegas – where it would be warm in the Spring AND there would be friends there to visit as well!  What a winning combination …

I longed to DRAG {rescue} my frozen friend from Minnesota for a little sun, hiking, dining out, and socializing with former high school friends.

~But~

I heard the gears grinding about a week after we talked by phone about going on this nice trip …

I felt the pressure she was straining under in her words …

I knew ticket prices were about to change when I began to hear her utter the real insecurities from her mouth.

She was living in fear – and had been for YEARS

So, I ordered a ticket for one, reserved a car, made hotel reservations for just my own room, and started making plans for things to do while in sunny Las Vegas.  And just so you know – Las Vegas has more to offer outside of downtown that you could ever imagine …

I’ll tell you about that trip after I say something about fear …

{It’s a trap and it’s full of Satan’s lies ~ Plain and simple}

But fortunately there is a WAY OUT.  There is an ULTIMATE rescue and sometimes it comes from an old friend who really wants to spend time with you and somehow starts a spark that propels someone to get some help – again.  Only, this time, her help was better than ever imagined.

She struggled with social anxiety, agoraphobia occasionally, and was then diagnosed ADHD at age 45.  Professional testing, medication and counseling were involved and she felt like a new person.

I’m so glad I asked her to go to Las Vegas with me.  I was sad that she didn’t go, but God had WAY bigger plans than two chicks hiking in the wilderness sucking down bottled water and chewing on granola bars.

So, my big lesson in this was it’s ok to go it alone, and to get past the disappointment of not having a close friend accompany you.  And most IMPORTANTLY … it’s ok to come clean to your best friend and ask for help.

{It’s ok, to leave it in God’s hands and be healed}

Well, now I’ll tell you some fun things I did in Las Vegas… I have 3 former high school friends there that I was only able to see during the evening hours due to their work schedules.  But I got some advice from them on what to do out in nature during my daytime hours.

Wow, Nevada has a beauty that doesn’t come in gold, glitz or lights.  It doesn’t sing, dance or cost much money at all.  It’s called nature – as in God’s creation – and it was spectacular!

I hiked 2 days in a row at a place called Red Rock Canyon National Conservation Area.  Here is one of the websites for it including a trail map:

http://www.redrockcanyonlv.org/

They have a wonderful visitor center complete with a gift shop and an outdoor educational area for adults and kids and the entrance fee to the park is nominal – It had to be less than $10 entrance fee for a place with a paved road, several parking areas and hiking trails, and quite frequently a great view of Big Horn sheep!

I also visited Valley of Fire State Park… which is probably a one hour drive from North Las Vegas.  Here is their website:

http://parks.nv.gov/parks/valley-of-fire-state-park/

I can honestly tell you, I didn’t see enough of this place.  WHEN I go back, I will leave early, and see more, more, more of this area specifically.  I only had time to see the windswept sandstone areas (called the Bee Hives) and the petroglyphs which are near the visitor center.

What I didn’t realize, was that although I was drinking plenty of water, I was somewhat “on fire” myself.  I didn’t know I was sick, and was at the doctor 3 days after arriving home with pneumonia AND the flu! 

While enjoying my stay in Las Vegas, I took 2 of my friends to a Big Daddy Weave concert, we ate at some fun places recommended by my friends and had a luxurious birthday dinner at the Wynn Hotel, based on a conversation I had while hiking with a waiter that works there.

Course, I’ve saved the best part for last… I also planned ahead and reserved an exciting tandem skydiving jump with Skydive Las Vegas.  After that, my friend drove me to see the Hoover Dam.  While skydiving, you can see Lake Mead and the Hoover Dam and it’s one of the highest jumps you can make in the U.S.  A mere 15,000 ft.  And I had the wonderful opportunity of being the last one to board the airplane …

So, when you’re the last one ON …

DCIM100GOPRO

You’re the first one OFF! 

skydive2

skydive 4

Yeah, I’d TOTALLY do it again!

No Fear

 
4 Comments

Posted by on January 23, 2014 in Life, in general, Travel, Writing

 

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A Raging Battle ~ Made to Crave Week 1

Made To Crave

Its Thursday, and during the Proverbs 31 Online Bible Study, it’s the day to HOP

I’ll be joining up with other bloggers doing the study and sharing our journey

Join us or just read for your encouragement

http://proverbs31.org/online-bible-studies/2014/01/23/made-to-crave-blog-hop-week-1/

~A Raging Battle~

Of the four blog topics to chose from this week, this is the one that spoke to me and some of my revelations from this week.

Actually, the topic didn’t speak, it SHOUTED!

Boy, I hit the panic mode …

{I’d say I broke into a sweat but it’s too cold here to be sweating.  Sweating right now would be considered dangerous – it would probably freeze on your person and that would be a problem!}

The crux of this raging battle is that food isn’t the only thing that tempts to destroy us.  Destruction to our physical, emotional and spiritual well-being comes in craving ANYTHING more than God.

I’ll be honest, I don’t like to shout or to be angry over stuff.  But I have it in abundance lately.  It’s my “go to” instead of food.

I wouldn’t be surprised if my {somewhat} controlling nature is a “go to” as well.

So, here’s the deal… I feel like this is INDEED a RAGING battle… and that I have shown up ill-equipped!

1.  In this battle, I have been excusing behavior instead of using Biblical principles

2.  I’m learning that the accountability I need is going to be between God and me because He’s fully reliable

In other words, I can’t lean on others to get me through the core of the issues.   They can encourage me along the way and offer advise, but MY answers are not always going to be found through the experience of others.

3.  God wants my complete surrender on some of these issues as He shows them to me

He really does need to be the one in control because I am just not very good at it!

*****

Here’s the big deal that came to my mind today though… like usual … I was in the shower and had NOTHING to write on (maybe I need some soap crayons)

ARE YOU READY???

God created us and spoke the Word to man.  He didn’t give this Word to us just so we could quote a scripture here or there or even just to reveal AWESOME prophecies …

He gave us this WHOLE book to teach us how to do things AND to show us that …

That Raging Battle?

IT’S NOT OURS!

You can quote chapter and verse – but when you have read the Word from cover to cover – as in from Genesis to Maps …

You will find that it’s His battle and

HE

ALREADY

WON

I’m not giving up,

I’m not giving in,

I’m giving it OVER!!!

Psalm 27:6

Then my head will be exalted above the enemies who surround me;

at his sacred tent I will sacrifice with shouts of joy;

I will sing and make music to the Lord.

 

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Made to Crave

Made To Crave

Made to Crave.  Why now?  Because I need it…

Lately I can’t seem to get my feet to move.

I can walk, I can drive, I can sit, draw, talk, eat and occasionally I sleep – sleep is always optional with my neck pain.

But getting my feet to move – towards God – has been difficult as of late.

He’s speaking and I’m clearly listening, but right now, I’m not moving.

That’s not the same as being stubborn or “not budging.”

It’s more like waiting and not “jumping the gun.”

There are thoughts in the corners of my brain that are the beginnings of “a new thing springing up” that I know God has firmly planted there.

Isaiah 43:19

See, I am doing a new thing!  Now it springs up;

do you not perceive it?

I am making a way in the wilderness and streams in the wasteland.

But first I believe he needs me to be still and see the wasteland through His eyes before I will be ready to act according to His will.

I’m ready, but He wants me to CRAVE it.

I was only on the verge of stepping into the wasteland when this Bible study was announced.  I knew it focused on healthy eating, which is not an issue for me …

But, the craving God part?  Now that’s a different story.

My life isn’t exactly curvy – I’m more of a straight-line kind of girl.

And I’m not talking about my figure, I’m referring to way I walk through my day.

I’m analytical, frugal, logical.  {straight line}

However, I just jumped up to finish this because I was drawing and playing with my new markers. {curvy line}

In the last 12 months my life has seemed upside down and backwards.  Curvy, like a roller coaster.

But seriously off track in some areas.

I’ve seriously been lacking in a direction that CRAVES God first each day.  And that is SO unlike me.

So, I’m taking on an Online Bible Study beginning on January 19th.  And Thursdays will be the blog hop days.  This was a topic that I chose to write about this week – Why am I doing the Made to Crave study?

It’s simple… I need to fix my “want to.”

If you’d like to join in on the study, there is still time.  Here is the link to the website for the Online Bible Study area…

http://proverbs31.org/online-bible-studies/

 

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Five Minute Friday ~ See

See

~If only I could make you see~

If I only had a week to show you love

through God’s eyes ~ I’d show you kindness

To a stranger, the downcast, the poor and the hungry …

If I only had a day to show you love

through God’s eyes ~ I’d show you compassion

For your close friends and co-workers …

If I only had an hour to show you love ~ I’d show you forgiveness.

For your family and for yourself …

If I only had a minute to show you love ~ I’d show you salvation.

~I’d introduce you to the breathe of life~

that beckons your heart

to turn toward Him.

For you to reflect His light, to heal your soul, to change your world

Come SEE with me

***

Colossians 3:12

Therefore, as God’s chosen people, holy and dearly loved, clothe yourselves with compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness, and patience.

*****

On Fridays… we “shhhh” the inner critic and run freely with our words.  Allowing to exercise our free-flowing words with a word prompt from our fearless community leader Lisa Jo Baker.  Then we join together and encourage each other – kind of like a Flashmob for Writers.

www.lisajobaker.com

 

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In God’s Hands

streams in the desert 2

Forget the former things;
do not dwell on the past.
See, I am doing a new thing!
Now it springs up; do you not perceive it?
I am making a way in the wilderness
and streams in the wasteland.
Isaiah 43:18-19

I felt it in the desert

I felt it near the stream

I shook at the term wasteland – it landed so deep.

My eyes have been cast downward

Although I love my God

I cherish the blessings of his lessons

as I travel on His creation, His sod.

Have I reached the Truth

That only God can give?

Did He lay it bare for me to see

Through the eyes of yet another?

In my heart I am transparent

I have no clue how else to be

Could this be the point

Where the path could turn

And allow me to be free?

Have I finally seen the light

That has escaped me so long?

Do I dare to take the steps

To step no more?

Am I ready to accept the challenge

To let go of the wheel?

To actually,

And finally,

Let God have it all?

He IS doing a new thing,

He’s laying out the wasteland.

He’s begging me to touch it

And to perceive it

And give it back to Him.

To let it go

To give it back

To the One who was meant to conquer it.

To stand

And watch

And see

And marvel

And gasp

And to be free.

 
1 Comment

Posted by on January 8, 2014 in Life, in general

 

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15 Minute Art Challenge ~Isaiah 6:3

This week’s 15 Minute Art Challenge and linking up with … 

http://mavisdavis.wordpress.com/ 

Isaiah 6:3

And they were calling to one another:

“Holy, holy, holy is the LORD Almighty;

the whole earth is full of his glory.”

Isaiah 6 3

 

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Five Minute Friday – Fight

On Fridays… we “shush” the inner critic and run amok with our words.  Allowing to exercise our free-flowing words with a word prompt from our fearless community leader Lisa Jo Baker.  Then we join together and encourage each other – kind of like a Flashmob for Writers.

www.lisajobaker.com

 

Wow, ok, this word holds WAY too much weight and significance in my life these days …

Some days, during actual arguments, this word “fight” has become so very negative.

I am thankful to have perspective on this word and don’t allow it to only pertain to the negative aspects of life … AND occasionally, that perspective comes on FASTER than HINDSIGHT …

{ Meaning, I can SOMETIMES get a clue

before I open my mouth or allow my mind to steer in the wrong direction.}

Say, in the case of illness… we occasionally have to fight to stay well.  Extra hand washing, etc. during the flu season.

In the case of depression, I have fought by asking for help, trying the generous advice given by some of my close friends, and on a few instances – taking medicines prescribed for depression.

I guess in my life … I don’t know how NOT to fight.  I was, after all, the baby of five kids…I was scrappy and fought hard under all that generous sibling rivalry going on around me.  (I was, however, everyone’s favorite)

How NOT to fight for what seems right, good, Godly, and to stand up or stand in for those who can’t do so for themselves just doesn’t seem to be in my DNA.

Fight can be a good thing.  Especially without the “foot in my mouth” disease that comes in the negative arguments.

Ok, well, I thought all this up this morning as I put up a good fight to stay warm in the last hot shower of the day.  YIKES… It’s FRIGID even here in the South this week!!!

Stay warm and safe out there my friends …

sunset

 

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