In the wake of the South Carolina tragedy, hearts are pierced, grieving has begun, loved ones are missed.
The good soldiers who transitioned from earth last Wednesday at Emanuel African Methodist Episcopal Church cause us all to reflect on who we are and what we’re doing. It is clear that life is fragile, and could escape any of us without warning.
What we do on earth does matter.
These nine went to church last Wednesday. Now the world is examining their efforts, their relatives and their legacies. They are free now, but what about us? To the grieving, the numb observer, the guilty gunman and those of similarly destructive mind sets:
“Be very careful, then, how you live–not as unwise but as wise” Ephesians 5:15 NIV
Karla Taylor is a Counselor and Inspirational Author.
Some years ago as I sat in a meeting with tech staff, someone said. “What else can you offer besides words?” I still chuckle at that question when I consider the power of words, written and spoken. Right now people around the globe are scrolling Instagram and other forms of social media seeking a dose of inspiration, looking for a morale booster or a glimmer of hope. Some are looking for something else, but that’s not my audience.
I’ve discovered that words are the turn-key to many of life’s significant events. “I do”. “It’s a boy!” “No thank you.” “I quit.” “I love you.” “I hate you.” “I’m leaving.” “You’re welcome.” “You’re hired.” “Sold!” “It’s Yours!”
Oh yes, words alone carry significant weight. What words are driving your life and thoughts today?
Thirty years ago this June I walked across the stage at Michigan State University with my first degree. Now, this month my daughter graduated from the same institution and the same college, Communication Arts and Sciences. We didn’t plan this!… Really, we did not.
It’s amazing to me how life unfolds, how what we deposit in our kids plays out. What sacrificial parenting can yield, that is way bigger than any office project. I stayed home with my daughter for years. Tucked my monogrammed briefcase in the closet, endured the misunderstanding looks of my colleagues, and raised my daughter. No other moms in my neighborhood were home at the time. It was lonely and really challenging, a lot. With one less income in our home, we had to tighten our belts to stick to our decision for me to stay at home with our daughter. Both my mom and my husband’s mother lived nearby and could have cared for our daughter while we both worked if we wanted them to, but we decided to be primarily responsible for the day-to-day care of our own child.
I wanted to go to graduate school six months after giving birth. That was my grand plan, but God had a better idea. How about I sit still awhile, putting my plans on the back burner, and pour most of what I knew into my offspring? She was reading by three years old. We went to every museum, park and zoo in our area. We strolled arboretums, went sledding and flew kites. When she went outside I went outside. On the bike, in the wagon and on to preschool… I was there. Through swimming classes, gymnastics, tennis lessons, and advanced summer learning programs. I was the driver, the sideline cheerleader, the tear wiper and the conflict advocate. Through Christian elementary school ( I was released then to pursue grad school ) and high school, dad and I sat in the bleachers through volleyball, cheerleading and traveling marching band. We had a lot of fun watching our daughter grow.
Now, with three graduations under our belt, we are in a bit of a parenting cool down. I’m sure many parents can relate to this. We are so thankful to the Lord for His plan unfolding in our daughter’s life. We are still celebrating her accomplishment and God’s faithfulness.
I heard something on the radio this week while driving, so I stopped and told Siri to make a note. You know, iPhone Siri, the digital helper who can answer all your questions, or at least what she interprets you’re asking :) It’s great to have her when my journal isn’t in hand to record fleeting aha moments. This nugget I’m about to share is one such moment. It was at the end of a group of women sharing their thoughts on some material they all read, when a gentle mature female voice said:
“Two women look through prison bars, one saw mud, and one saw stars.”
It struck me how powerful our personal perspectives are. The lens through which we see life is as personal and varied as our fingerprints. Colored by our personalities and experiences, we commonly see life through introspective lenses. The question is does our personal viewfinder serve us well?
Download my book, One A Day Nuggets For Success as a tool for expanding your perspective.
Today’s reading 2 Peter 1:1-7Make it a great day :)
May 7, 2015 is the National Day of Prayer in America. Are you in? Don’t know what to pray? Matthew 6:9-13 is a useful guide.
Grace and Peace,
Have you done your very best? As a parent, as a wife or husband, in service or ministry? Have you done your best? Then let it be enough. Your best is enough. The Lord is not looking for perfection from you, He is that. Have you aligned yourself with His will for your life and done your best…. Up to the minute? Then relax, its harvest time!
Now, if you haven’t done your best, and the consequences are all around you, ask God to forgive you. Ask the “others” involved to forgive you as well, and get moving in the right direction for your life today. #Counsel4Living
In life sometimes there’s a warning sign, while sometimes there isn’t. We’re all just cruising along the road of familiarity, when suddenly the terrain shifts. An illness, lost job, death or divorce can leave us reeling.
Everyone traveling the road of life is subject to sudden shifts. There’s no fail proof formula, but some seem more equipped than others at facing life’s sharp curves. Is it in their DNA, their personalities, their beliefs or their thinking?
How are you preparing today, for tomorrow’s challenges?
After a weekend of events and treats, today’s a good day to get in a workout. It’s not too late! Pick a pair of shoes and make it happen. Run, walk, bike, box or whichever workout suits you. Start your week off strong! #Counsel4Living
Go ahead and make your partner, mate, husband or wife your God. You’ll be disappointed soon. Life is bigger than your primary relationship. Think about it and pursue healthy balance. Nothing lasts that is suffocated. #Counsel4Living
Download my daily living guide for help with pursuing balance in your relationships.