Monday, 17 March 2014

Days 8 through 13

Recent blessings for days 8 through 13...

Day 8: A beautiful day of sunshine to go out and skate on the lake. Was nice to get away form school work and skate away some stress.

Day 9: I found letters of encouragement from my youth leaders in an journal, it was great to read them again. They are a great reminder, and they lifted my mood a lot. 

Day 10: Even though I have stated this before, I love my blanket. It it always there for extra comfort, and after a long day of classes, coming back exhausted, my bed and my blanket were the perfect combination for me to relax.  Being able to just unwind after a long day was great.

Day 11: The blessing of having a single room. Being able to just hide away when I need time to myself. Being able to just escape for relaxing and unwinding. 

Day 12: I was able to Skype with a great friend from high school! We had been trying to find a time that worked, and even through technical difficulties, it ended up that we were able to chat and catch up! Great to re connect and share laughs together once again.

Day 13: Taking a nap. It seems like I always mess up my sleeping schedule when I am at university, and I was able to actually fit in a nap between classes nicely. It turned out longer than I had anticipated, but it was definitely worth it. The extra sleep helps tremendously for the rest of the day.

Praise the Lord!
Give thanks to the Lord, for he is good!
His faithful love endures forever.

Psalm 106:1

Wednesday, 12 March 2014

Days 4 through 7

Update for my 40 days of thanking God for these blessings in my day. For days 4 through 7 I am saying thanks for various things that I have been blessed with the last few days.

Day 4:
Loving words - When I was home, I got to see a very special woman in my life, she is my friend, my mentor and my sister in Christ. It was such a gift to sit and talk with her. I can share tears, laughs, hugs and more with her. She is such a blessing to me in more ways than one, I can always count on her wise and loving words.

Day 5:
Church family - Coming home to see those that have been with me throughout my journey, and being able to worship together with them again. Having that feeling and sense of community together. I took this for granted but then when I went away for school I realized that having a church family built is such a blessing.

Day 6:
My pillow - After having it in my luggage in another city for the night, it was certainly a blessing when I was able to retire to bed with it under my head.
Fuzzy blankets - They came in very handy when I wanted that extra comfort, warmth and coziness during the night.

Day 7:
Walk in fresh air - It isn't everyday I get the time to take a walk down the streets. Sure it was for a  class assignment, but it did feel refreshing to be out of the classroom or residence building.
Guidance and wisdom - Being able to share and learn from those who care about you. Even though there are many difficult things in life, being able to talk about it is a blessing. Even more, receiving back advice and guidance from another woman in my life that cares. Having her there to listen and to help on many occasions.

Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above, and cometh down from the Father of lights, with whom is no variableness, neither shadow of turning.
James 1:17 (KJV)

Friday, 7 March 2014

40 days

A while ago I heard that when giving up something for lent is meant for focusing more on God as well. Each year that I gave something up I just chose something that was in my life that I used a lot or ate a lot. It never really had much of a connection or reason to it.

This year, I couldn't figure out what to give up so in stead I am doing something a little different. I am going to keep track of the blessings each day he gives me for 40 days. And hopefully continue longer than that. 

These next 40 days will hopefully but a transition for me. From being at university I feel like I have become lost and it took until now to realize just how far. I do not want to continue this way, instead I want to use the little things that I look over everyday and recognize how important they are. Also just to realize that God is there for me in so many different ways and times within my daily life that I do not realize and instead I overlook. It is the little things that can make the most difference.

Day 1:
Snail mail, words of encouragement, God's hand in perfect timing.
I received snail mail from an amazing woman!! Her mail always comes at the perfect timing,... when I need it most!

Day 2:
Music - I was listening to music on the bus ride home, and the powerful words of worship music and the ability to uplift your mood and spirit.
Family - I was able to come home for the weekend even just driving part the way home with my Dad was great to be with him.
Home - When i walked into my house from being away for a while, there was the familiar feelings and sense of comfort no matter how long I had been gone.

Day 3:
Friendships - The ability to meet up with friends to catch up and spend time together. There is the feeling that they love you for your good and bad times, your crazy and quietness.
Hugs - Receiving hugs from family and friends, I know that a hug can say so much. For me it means a lot and just like a picture can say a million words, so can a hug.
Words of wisdom - I received many words of wisdom from various people in my life, all being very important to me and very useful. 

Monday, 10 February 2014

The words I needed to hear

This year is my first year of university. If I look at how coming here has affected my faith, it is interesting. There are both "ups" and "downs" of going away for school. Although, I would have to say that I haven't really felt close to God when I have been here. That is, until recently. I feel like I have been shifting. My heart is being challenged. Many things have sparked the challenge. Even though I have heard many things before, for some reason they feel different this time. Maybe because I feel like they apply more to me now than before. Either way, they were the words that I needed to hear.

Work willingly at whatever you do, as though you were working 
for the Lord rather than for people- Colossians 3:23 

A few weeks ago the Pastor of the Church I attend did a series on Jesus in the Office. He spoke about how we are to work like we are working for the Lord. Currently I do not work at a job anywhere, but I can still relate this to my life. Within my program at school I work on many group projects. Within my work at studio I can take this to heart and act on it. No matter how many headaches the project may be giving me, I need to make sure I am giving it 100%. Not taking shortcuts or the "easy way out". The way that I work should show Jesus through my actions. He should shine through everything that I do, including the work that I do at school. 

In my heart and my soul
I give You control
Consume me from the inside out Lord
Let justice and praise
Become my embrace
To love You from the inside out

These words are part of Joel Houston's song called, From the Inside Out. Yesterday in church we sang this song. It is the first time that I have heard these words for a long time. This time when I heard and sang them they meant so much more to me than they have before. They hold so much more meaning. This time singing them I really felt like that is what I wanted to say to God. I wasn't singing the song just because I was in church, but I really want to have God inside and out, and have him shine through my life for others to see his amazing love.

"Blessings on you this week in all your interactions and the lives you touch"

I received these words, along with some verses from the bible, in snail mail a couple days ago from a very wise friend of mine. Even though I had not told her about certain things that were on my mind and heart she couldn't have wrote more perfect words for me to read at that moment. It caught me and made me think about the previous week, let alone the previous 24 hours. What had others thought about the course of my actions? Did they see Jesus through what I said or did? What impact was I giving?  How can I show more of the Love of Jesus through my daily work at school?

It is amazing how God loves us so unconditionally, and He knows everything about us. He gets our attention in many different ways and at the perfect time. Had all this happened the week prior, I don't think I would have been in the same spot. My heart was being challenged but I did not know where it was taking me and God knew, even though I did not. I knew that I was struggling and didn't know much beyond that, but as the week went on God gave me the words I needed to hear.