Sport Emotions in Men

I get a kick out of my husband’s friends, especially when they are all together chatting about sports.  They all have their favorite teams, and their sports that they are most passionate about and they love to raz one another about which team is the best, and which team won the most Stanley Cups, or World Series rings, etc.  It’s kind of painful to listen to, for us females that might be around at the time.

Some of these men are very passionate about their beliefs in their prize team that they cheer for.  They also get very angry if someone insults their favorite player, or the team’s ability or team manager, or the fact that all the players were on steroids and that might be the reason that they won so many World Series rings.  The list of arguments is tiresome, but these men never seem to tire in defending their precious team.

It’s very much the same as these people that call themselves an “Atheist”.  There are so many nowadays.  And vocal.  Oh my goodness they are vocal.  More vocal that Boston Red Sox fans!  Way more vocal than any Christian, Buddhist, Muslim or Agnostic.  Why do you think they are so vocal?  From the ones I’ve run across, most are angry, angry, angry individuals.  My heart actually breaks that these people have such a bitter heart.  It must be hell just living in their brains!

Nobody believes or rejects God for intellectual reason.  People believe or reject for emotional reasons.  In recent psychological studies, one of the largest people groups exhibiting anger towards God is Atheists.  They are angry at God—angry at something they don’t believe in. Don’t you find this bizarre?  Obviously, they have a chip on their shoulder about God.  Really is this why you became an Atheist?  Or could it be that you were emotionally scarred somewhere in your life?  Maybe you were praying for a parent to live and they died.  Maybe you were praying for a marriage to survive and it died.  Maybe you were praying for healing of a sick child, and they were never healed.  Whatever the reason, I am sure it was heartbreaking.

We all make emotional decisions, and people make these decisions based on what they have been exposed to.  My mother wouldn’t take a drink of any alcoholic beverage because she grew up with an alcoholic mother and was exposed to the devastation that accompanies this.  Some people never want to get married, maybe because they went through their parents splitting and are scarred from that or maybe they had a bad experience with the opposite sex.  Either ways, these decisions are based on emotional circumstances.

We all face emotional experiences, and we’ve all been let down tremendously once, twice, or even more in our lives and we believe that it is God that is letting us down.  If this produces incredible anger inside of you, you will turn away from God.  And you will be very angry.  Atheists will tell you that they reject God for factual evidence, but they rarely do.  There are multitudes of facts that there is some higher force in this universe.

All scholars agree that Paul is a good historian who wrote books of his accounts of Biblical times.  In 1 Corinthians 15:1-3 he reaccounts, “Now I would remind you, brothers, of the gospel preached to you, which you received, which you stand, and by which you are being saved, if you hold fast to the word I preached to you—unless you believed in vain. For I delivered to you as of first importance what I also received: that Christ died for our sins in accordance with the Scriptures.”  This is documented as the truth by many scholars, but now you have to do with it what you want to do with it.

Just like my husband’s friends getting all emotional over their sports team, many people get all emotional over religion.  People can think their beliefs are for scholarly reasons, but unless they have a degree in philosophy and are well educated in this area, the way they believe is based on emotional reason and not intellectual reasons.

Just like why a male cheers for a certain sports team.  Their opinions are based on emotional reasons.  Just like philosophers will admit, there is proof of Jesus, but then it is your decision on what you do with it.  Don’t let anger of your past stand in your way of all you’ve been created to be, because as much as you want to deny it, Atheists don’t believe in God probably because they have been emotional scared by something or someone.  It’s very sad, but true.

Thank You!

Can you believe this is my 100th blog that I have posted?  I’ve written more than this, but some were back from last fall, and I didn’t start my blog until the first of February, and they didn’t go with the season that they were written during, but will eventually be here.  It blows my mind! I can’t believe that I have published 100 blogs!

It especially should blow other people’s minds.  Those who have known me on a personal level for years would be astonished too.  First of all, I am no Shakespeare, or do I claim to be, but writing was, by far, my worst subject in school.  I avoided it at all costs!  I actually hated Shakespeare, because he was way over my head—all the symbolism and crap.  Hated it!

My teachables for my Education Degree are Physical Education and Biology, but when they pulled me out of the gymnasium for me to teach French as a second language because I also had a French background I was very intimidated.  I wasn’t intimidated to teach French to ten year olds, I was scared to death to teach Literacy.  My own mother tongue.  I thought to myself, “I can’t teach children how to write, I don’t know how to write myself!”  I remember having so much anxiety over it all, and the wonderful leads at my district reassuring me that I knew more about writing than a ten year old—but sometimes I doubted even that!

Eventually, with the guidance from the Literacy Leads in my district, I wrapped my head around teaching this very scary subject.  I had to be very prepared and spent many house on SmartBoard presentations for all the different traits of writing.

I know for sure that my English teacher from high school would never believe it if I told him that I wrote blogs and loved it!  This poor teacher earned his wage trying to teach me how to write, and sadly he always learned more than me.  He learned many ways on what didn’t teach me how to write.  I skimmed by English with the bare minimal pass, which I think he generously gave me out of the kindness of his heart so he didn’t have to try and learn more ways on what wasn’t teaching me to become a writer.

Writing is just one of those things that I wasn’t built for, but now I love it, which is the reason I know that there is a higher power out there, helping me write these blogs.  Many times I sit down to write something, and an entirely different story takes over my brain and is typed out by my fingers.  Other times I have to research what he wants me to write on because I have no idea what he is asking for, like my blog on Newton’s Third Law.  Over my head!

I realize that I am just a tool for the Holy Spirit to relay a message to someone, somewhere that will read my blog.  I am humbled to know through the statistics on my blog that he has reached over 20 different countries; Czech Republic; Brazil; Norway; Cuba; Mexico; Barbados; Bangladesh; India;  Neverlands; United Kingdom; Indonesia; Norway; Australia; Tanzania; Dominican; Guadeloupe; Austria; Italy; Philippines; Malaysia; Qatar and of course United States and Canada all through my blog.

2 Timothy 2:21 explains, “Therefore, if anyone cleanses himself from what is dishonorable, he will be a vessel for honorable use, set apart as holy, useful to the master of the house, ready for every good work.”  I definitely cleaned myself up from what a selfish and self-centered person I was.  Is that why God is using me through these blogs?  I will never know.  I just know that since I was obedient and started my blog, I feel he is using me more and more all the time to be a vessel for his work.

I will continue to write these blogs as long as he continues to fill my mind with these words he wants me to write.  For some reason they scream at me until I get them down on paper, and it is overwhelming by times, but the feedback that I get from people is fantastic and worth every bit of the work.

Thank you all for taking the time out of your busy lives to give five minutes of your day to read my blogs.  If you are drawn in to read the blog, trust me it is for a reason.  He is trying to reach you about something he wants you to hear or think about.  Sit and meditate and see what else he says to you.  We are all here for his reasons and to serve him.  Hopefully I found mine with these blogs.  What is your reason?

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Bulldozer Parents

Helicopter Parents.  Every heard of them?  Well, the new thing is “Lawn Mower Parents.”  Parents who try to mow the way for their children through life.  I prefer to call them “Bulldozer Parents” because they try to bulldoze the way for their children, instead of letting them experience hardship or failure they try to bully their way with everyone that their children come in contact with to make sure that they don’t fail.  If they do fail, they then write emails, make nasty phone calls, and try to find answers of why their child was treated the way they were treated, or failed what they were trying to achieve.

Do you know of parents like this?  Being in the school system, a coach and a parent myself, I meet these types of parents every day.  Don’t get me wrong, it pains me to see any child fail, and especially my own, but failure is a part of shaping a person for adulthood.

Think about your own life.  What things do you remember the most about growing up?  Is it all your successes or is it all your failures?  I know myself it is all my failures!  I remember one time, I was competing at the Atlantic Championships in Prince Edward Island, and there was a big storm that day.  It was such a big storm that the power went out in the building we were competing in.  As luck would have it, the building went black just as I was vaulting, and I smashed right into the vault.  Do I remember what I placed overall that year?  No.  Do I remember what I performed like on the other three events?  No.  Do I remember anything else about this particular competition?  No.  The only thing I remember is smashing face first from a full out sprint into the vault!  I only remember my failure!

Another thing I won’t forget is failing my Praxis exam for the writing component three times.  It was something that I struggled with and constantly failed at.  It is also something that I will never forget as long as I live, especially with the irony that now I write daily blogs spreading God’s word.

We are all children of God, and is God a Bulldozer Parent?  Absolutely not, and he tells us that in the Bible.  He wants us to experience hardships.  He wants us to learn to work through trials.  That is how we grow into become the person that he has designed us to be.

He explains to us in James 1:2-4, “Count it all joy, my brothers, when you meet trials of various kinds, for you know that the testing of your faith produces steadfastness. And let steadfastness have its full effect, that you may be perfect and complete, lacking in nothing.”  We are all tested, and if we last through the test we will become what he is creating us to be.

Watching your children fail is very heartbreaking—I think my parents got used to it, because I failed a lot!  My parents never once went to the school to take up for me, my parents never once tackled a coach because I didn’t make a team.  My parents never once told me I deserved to be on a team when I didn’t make it.  My parents gave me the best advice!  You have to use your failures as a lesson and learn where you have to improve so that you will make the team next time.

Children are going to grow up sometime and have to realize they aren’t going to get the scholarship they want, or that they aren’t going to get into the university program they want to take.  Maybe they aren’t going to get their dream job.  As heartbreaking as it sounds, their marriages aren’t going to go the way they thought.  You are their parents, and your job is to teach them how to survive on their own, not bulldoze the path of their lives.  Are you going to go to the university and bulldoze their path there?  Are you going to bulldoze their marriage?  Are you going to bulldoze their jobs?  Hopefully, the answer is no.

Everyone has different parenting styles, and I understand that, but I like to model mine after that of our Father in Heaven.  He gives us trials to make us stronger, to sharpen our swords, to make us learn from our mistakes.  He doesn’t bulldoze our way, he gives us trials so that we will mold into the creatures he wants us to be.  Love your kids like our Divine Creator loves us, and do them a favor.  Let them fail!  It’s going to make them into the amazing people they were created to be!

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Proper Progressions

Gymnastics is such an amazing sport!  I love that you have to have a vision of what moves are next in line from progressions.  If certain gymnasts get rush through the progressions it is really detrimental to their careers as a gymnast.  They can have all the talent in the world, but if they skip steps in their progressions, they are never going to reach their full potential.

Many coaches don’t realize the importance of this, especially those non-experienced ones, who might not have witnessed the power of their lack of progressions.  Sadly, once they start to reach the upper levels this is detrimental to their development and can instill much fear into their little brains.  Then we have to retrain the brain and develop their confidence again, which sacrifices a year or more of their time in gymnastics and if you are familiar with gymnastics it is a sport for the young, and their careers are usually over by the time they are in their late teens.

Progressions are a great thing.  We have to progress and learn to handle the different body movements and be able to handle the power and speed that comes with growing as a gymnast.  Just like growing as a gymnast, we grow spiritually as well.  We progress through life, learning from the trials we are faced with.  Learning to deal with what comes from becoming an adult and the decisions that we make as we mature.

Just like rushing a gymnast can produce fear and insecurities, I feel the same is with spirituality.  Nobody can rush someone to becoming the spiritual person that they are made to become.  We have to progress at our own rate, learning from our failures, and our situations that life brings us.  Many times, people will resort to other things to deal with their insecurities.  Maybe you shop to hide your insecurities.  Perhaps you have resorted to drugs or alcohol to cover your uncertainties.  Some people even seek the thrill of infidelity trying to make themselves feel wanted and secure in themselves.

Whatever it is, we all have the free will to choose whatever makes us feel good, but somehow we seem to listen to our egos and make bad decisions before we realize our wrongs.  Just like in gymnastics.  Gymnasts and their parents think they are doing great until they hit the wall and they can’t progress because of a bad decision that was made by a prior coach.  Gymnastics is a sport that a gymnast can’t be rushed.  We can’t be rushed spiritually either.  If people aren’t ready to open their heart and receive the word of God, there is no forcing them to do this.

Just like coaches that think they know what they are doing but don’t quite grasp the concept of the sport, there are also many people who pretend they believe the word, and go to church but don’t live by the word.  Their hearts aren’t the hearts that God wants his children to have.  They are trying to do their best, but just haven’t grasped the concept of being a true Christianity yet.  Just like some coaches that just don’t quite grasp the progressions of the sport of gymnastics.

Psalms 32:8 tells us, “I will instruct you and teach you in the way you should go; I will counsel you with my eye upon you.”  God is our coach.  He will follow us through all our progressions in life.  He won’t skip a step to make us who we are created to be.  Everything we are going through is for a reason.  Just like in gymnastics, there is a reason for every drill, every progression every conditioning program and every gymnast will progress in their own time.

God is the best coach for our lives that there is out there.  We just have to learn to listen to his instructions and trust where he is taking us.  You might feel like your life is over sometimes, just like my gymnasts that are frustrated in their gymnastics journey, but stay in faith and trust in his coaching and watch your life turn around and become all that he has created it to be!

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High School Reunion

I’m getting crazy old!  It’s my 25th high school reunion this year, and it is making me feel super old.  It feels like yesterday that we had our 10th reunion, but somehow 15 more years have slipped by my eyes.  I can think back and realize that in these 15 years, I have had my two children, moved to a new home, went back to university to get my education degree, taught at four different schools, traveled many different places, made lots of new friends, started writing a spiritual blog, and honestly the list is endless.

Not only is my list endless, I could have multiple lists of what changed over the last ten years with sub-categories for each.  I could have a list of how I changed as a parent, as a wife, as a daughter, as a teacher, as a coach and as a person in general.

The changes that would like to talk about today is the changes I’ve made in my “person in general” sub-category.  Ten years ago, I truthfully was no different than I was when I graduated.  I still was very self-centered and egotistical.  I was focused on being the best person I could be, but in all the wrong ways.  I was focused on a good job, a nice house, a fancy car to drive, an endless wardrobe, and jewelry—I loved jewelry!

It was all center on me and what I looked like on the outside, not what I was on the inside.  Having my children, obviously made me less selfish, because like most mothers I was putting my children’s needs in front of my own.  Other than my children’s needs, I still was focused on my needs.  I still was trying to control things so that I was happy.

It wasn’t until I made the New Year’s Resolution in 2015 to become a better wife that I stumbled onto literature that started explaining to me that I can’t change my husband, but I can change myself.  What a concept.  I had to change?  Me?  But in my self-centered world, I was perfect.  I could do no wrong, it was everyone around me that was wrong.

I still remember the first book that I ever started reading on my pursuit to become a better wife.  I typed in the words, “Become a better wife” on the Amazon search bar and “31 Days to a Happy Husband—What a Man Needs Most from His Wife” by Arlene Pellicane popped up.  I thought, “SOLD!” and downloaded it to my Kindle.  I excitedly sat down to read my new purchase only to read on Day 1, “From Chaos to Calm” a quote below it from the Bible!  My reaction was, “What is this?  Why the Bible scripture?  What have I just bought?  What am I going to read?”

The Bible verse was that from Mark 3:25, “If a house is divided against itself, that house cannot stand.”  The wheels in my brain started turning.  This makes so much sense!  Is the Bible full of wisdom like this?  Can I learn to be a better wife from a book that was written eons ago?  Time has changed, what am I going to learn about becoming a better wife from the Bible?  Little did I realize the journey that I was about to take!

I kept an open mind and would stay faithful to my purchase, reading it day by day and then paid special attention to the “Notice Today” highlights the author gave like, “Imagine the challenges your husband faces at work this week.”  I started taking heed to the hints on how to make his life better.  Also each day had a “Nurture Today” which were things like, “When your husband walks in the door today, greet him with a warm smile, a hug and kiss and straighten up the house before his arrival.”

This book started the changes in my life not only to become a better wife, but to become a better person.  I couldn’t believe the wisdom that was in this book nor could I get enough of the Bible.  I had no idea the Bible was full of so much wisdom.  Here I was looking for the ultimate self-help book, when it was in my house all along, just gathering dust.

I am proud to say that I am not that selfish person that I was 10 years ago, or even 2 years ago.  I learned that I can’t change anyone but myself.  Once I changed myself to mirror the way God wants me to live, my entire world changed through the hand of God!

Are you stuck in your high school mentality?  Are you still worried about you?  Stop feeding your ego go and start feeding the needs of the people around you and watch the changes that unfold before your eyes.  Give the wisdom of the word of our Divine Creator a chance and maybe it will surprise you as much as it surprised me.  Time to grow up people!

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Summer Strengthening

In the world of gymnastics it is the start of summer training and this has to be my favorite time of the gymnastics year.  It is the time for new tricks, extra flexibility, but my favorite part is pushing the girls past their threshold and make them sore so that we they are stronger for the next competitive season.

Having my background in Kinesiology, I love the human anatomy and also love that I can transfer my knowledge from my first degree into my athletes.  Nothing gives me more pleasure than having my gymnasts come to the gym and tell me how sore they are.  It means I did my job as a coach helping them pass their threshold and help increase their strength.

For athletes, a regimented resistance training has been shown to promote considerable increases in skeletal muscle mass. With traditional resistance training methods, I was taught that an intensity of greater than ~60 % of an athlete’s maximum threshold is necessary to stimulate significant increases in muscular size, and I base my program around this threshold.

I started testing once a week, their personal best in all the different areas, and now reward a Freeze for those who can better their personal best score by more than 5.  We all need a little motivation, and it is incredible what a Freeze can do.  It’s great watching them push themselves to their maximum and also hear the feedback the next training day of how they can barely move.  Then I know I hit their 60% max.

This is much the same as strengthening ourselves on a personal level.  We have to be pushed to what feels like our maximum before we grow as individual.  We are meant to go through some straining times, just like athletes have to strain their muscles to become stronger.  Straining your muscles actually give your muscles micro tears, but once these tears heal, you are stronger than you were before.

The same goes with us in our life.  Something in our life gets us down and we don’t think we can handle what we are going through.  Maybe your children are off course and it is killing you watching them ruin their lives.  Or could it be your marriage is on the rocks and you don’t think you can make it another week in your relationship.  Perhaps it is a financial loss that has you devastated and stressed out.  Did you lose a loved one and your life is upside down without them?

Joshua 1:9 reminds us, “Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous. Do not be frightened, and do not be dismayed, for the Lord your God is with you wherever you go.”

Whatever it is that is pushing you to your threshold, hold on tight.  You can do it.  You can make it.  It might feel absolutely horrible right now, but remember God is with you through it all.  Ask God for strength and he will give it to you.  Ask God to help with the pain and he will.  Ask God to protect you and your heart and he will.

Not only is he always with you, and he will help heal the micro tears in your heart, mind and soul, he will help strengthen you and you will learn that what you were put through helped strengthen you as a person and made you into the person you are today!

The old saying, “If it doesn’t kill you, it will make you stronger” is very true, but the process is much easier if you realize God is with you while you are being push to the brink of your breaking point!  Reach out and take advantage of what he can do to help!  You’ll be amazed just how much you can put up with when he is coaching you!

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Mother May I?

I love being a parent!  I have to admit, my parenting style is like a fine wine—I definitely get better at it as I age.  It was hard when I was young, and my children were young and only 20 months apart.  I wasn’t a natural born mother, but I’m starting to feel my groove now!

I’m now enjoying the life of being a mother to a 14 and 12 year old.  This is a great age!  My son isn’t in high school yet, so he’s at a great age.  Almost a man, but still a boy at heart.  My daughter is just finishing her first year of middle school and is not your typical girl.  She hates drama, and actually chooses to avoid it, which makes my life so much easier.

I am very fortunate to have such great children!  I love going through every stage with them.  I look back and laugh at many of the things they used to do.  One of my favorite stages was when I started leaving my son alone for the first few times.  It was finally some freedom from packing up two kids to go anywhere, and this was a nice feeling.  Also, I got to watch my son morph into an independent young man.  He’s very black and white, and a rule is a rule, and you don’t break rules.

Staying by himself is an opening to break any rule of the house you would like, but not him.  He would call me on my cell phone and ask if he could have a bowl of chips.  He would call to see if he could go to a neighbour’s house to hang out.  He would call to tell me he showered and brushed his teeth.  Everything he did he still made accountable to me, even though I wasn’t there.

This is the way that we should be with our great father in Heaven.  We should be praying to ask if we should do certain things.  We should be praying for his help to guide us in our pursuit of our first home to purchase.  We should pray for his guidance on our next financial investment.  Just like my son calling to insure his decisions were ok, we should be calling the big guy upstairs to do the same.

Why, you may wonder?  It’s the way he would like us to be.  Just like I appreciated my son calling me (even though it was not necessary) to make contact with me and to check for my reassurance on things.  Even though we are grown adults and should know what is best for us, we still don’t!  Admit it.  How many times have we made the wrong choice?  How many times did we get burnt on a decision we made on our own?  I know I have a huge list.  How are we going to stop making these bad decisions?  By becoming wiser.  How do we become wiser?  Easy, from the word of the Bible.

Job 28:23 says it in black and white, “God alone understands the way to wisdom; he knows where it can be found”.  Then why are we fighting the system?  Why do we not take all our questions to God in prayer?

Try making a change in your life today and remember what it was like when you were ten years old and able to stay short periods of time without your parents.  Were you like my son, double-checking that everything you did was fine by your parents?  Whether you are 15 or 99, it is still ok to double-check with God on what you should do.  You might not like what he is telling you to do.  It might go against what your selfish ego wants to do, but trust it and watch the change in your life unfold.  We are all still children of God, no matter your age, and we are all still learning how to life in his word.  You are never too old to listen to your Father!

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Faithful Foundation

They say no education is ever a waste, and you know that is very true.  I took Kinesiology for my first degree, then I went on to be a Physical Education teacher.  Today, I teach French as a second language to grade 5 students.  I love it, but it is not at all what I am trained to do.  I do get to teach Kindergarten physical education every second day for an hour, which is a glimpse of what I studied.

My husband is the same.  He went to university and majored in history and psychology, and today is a business owner.  My father was a teacher, but only taught for a year and decided that it wasn’t for him, and proceeded to have many different jobs over his working lifetime.

This happens many times to many different people.  When we are young, we think we know what we want to do with the rest of our lives, so we set our sights on our goal and then achieve it only to realize that this isn’t for us.

When I was in university for Kinesiology, I wanted to switch schools and degrees during my third year.  My father, being the wise man that he is, advised me against it.  I remember to this day his exact words to me, “You don’t start the foundation and not build the house.”  This statement resonates in me still today with many things that I start and don’t want to finish.

As my life continues to enfold as the year progresses on, I find me thinking the same about my spiritual walk.  Years ago, when I was young, my amazing parents definitely laid my foundation for my relationship with God.  It was a strong foundation, but somehow I abandoned the worksite for many years.

It’s not until I’m finally in my 40s that I decided to start building my house of faith.  Sadly, I am just starting to put the walls of my house up in my life.  At my past rate of progress, I’m assuming now as the decades progress, when I’m in my 70s or 80s hopefully I will be finishing the shingles on my roof.

Are you the same as me?  Did you have a great foundation of faith laid by your parents but got distracted from your contracting duties by your ego and the crazy world we live in?  I remember that my first year biology course was all about the evolution of mankind that has been defined by science.  That definitely started my downward spiral to the disbelief in faith.

Ephesians 2:20-22 says, “Built on the foundation of the apostles and prophets, Christ Jesus himself being the cornerstone, in whom the whole structure, being joined together, grows into a holy temple in the Lord. In him you also are being built together into a dwelling place for God by the Spirit.”

Just like starting university and not finishing your degree, even if you might not use your degree afterwards, it is the same as not building on the foundation of faith that your parents have laid for you in your childhood.  You might not use it until you are in your mid-life like myself, but eventually that foundation of faith will come in handy!  Jesus is our cornerstone, but it’s up to you to build your house and dwell with him in your life.

Just like any education, it isn’t a waste and neither is any form of getting to know our great divine creator.  Trust me, someday it will come in handy!

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Backwash Your Life

As we enter into the month of June, I have to admit, I’m really getting excited for the summer to start.  With summer, comes a lot of work.  I know you can hear our grass growing overnight and it is ready to cut the next day after it was just mowed.  The vegetable and flower gardens always need watering, weeding and feeding, and then if you have a pool too, you have even more work!

I love our pool, but it is a lot of upkeep, especially at the first of the season.  Our pool sits in a very wooded area of our yard, so leaves are my enemy.  We have a huge pile of leaves in the bottom of our pool, that even the shock treatment won’t breakdown.

After a hard Canadian winter, we have to add lots of chemicals to bring the water back to a normal level.  Even after we put all the chemicals in, we have to backwash the garbage out, and watch the water slowly get clearer and clearer.  Then we test the water again, and see what other chemical needs to be added, and add that chemical to bring up or down the PH level.  Backwash the pool again, and the pool water gets clearer still.

Over the summer, we have to test the water and continue keeping the delicate balance of salt and PH levels to make sure we can keep the water crystal clear.  It is a constant struggle, which depends on the weather, amount of rain, amount of usage, amount of sunlight, even the amount of sunscreen the comes off the people that are using the pool effects the PH level.  It’s non-stop.

As I was backwashing our pool the other day, and watching the dirty water shoot out of the long hose that runs into backyard woods, I stood there and thought how much dirt I let go through my own brain in the run of a year.  Just like cleaning my pool water, I am constantly cleaning my mind.  It is easy to let garbage in your brain and dirty your delicate ideology of life.

Lately life is throwing lots of stuff in my pool water of life!  Work is stressful, as we come to the end of a school year, and report cards are due along with all the certificates and awards that come with teaching the grade 5 class, photos, prizes, fundraising—it’s never ending for a teacher this time of the year.  My mother’s health has been poor and she’s been in the hospital, and I don’t know if you’ve ever experienced a love one being sick and in pain, but it’s a horrible experience.  Our hospital is splitting at the seams with patients so she doesn’t have a room or a bed, it’s frustrating.   I feel like not only do I have to be there for my mother, but also I want to fill my mother’s shoes and look after my dad.  Along with this, it’s the end of the year activities are here for gymnastics, my son is playing three different sports at one time and my husband is selling one of our restaurants.  It’s definitely affecting the PH balance in my life.

Imagine if we all had a backwash hose, where we could flip a switch and let out all the garbage that we build up in our minds with worry, doubt, and frustration.  In reality we all do have a backwash hose!  All we have to do is sit down for a quiet moment and say a prayer.  Deuteronomy 31:8 reassures us, “The LORD himself goes before you and will be with you; he will never leave you nor forsake you. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged.”

Instead of worrying about everything that is going on in your life, leave it all in prayer, and let God lead the way.  You don’t have to beg.  You just have to ask once, and he is listening.  After you pray, then start praising and thanking him for his help and guidance, and watch it all unfold the way it is supposed to.

I’m sure I’m not the only one with a crazy life like I explained above.  I am sure every one of you are going through situations much the same as myself.  God is love, and he will take care of everything for you—he is the backwash hose for your pool of life!  He will clean all the dirt out of your life and leave you with sparkling clean pool water.  Flip your switch and start believing today!

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Tiger Lily Sprouts

It’s almost the end of May already and I am loving watching my flower gardens fill in.  We’ve been living at our home for 13 years now, and every year I picked a project to work on and would accomplish in the spring or early summer, and now, many years later, I am starting to really see my visions come alive.  It’s very rewarding!

In some places however, it is almost getting too thick.  I love Tiger Lilies because they are such a vibrant color of orange, and believe it or not, orange is my favorite color, so these flowers really are my favorite.  If you know the flower that I am talking about you are also aware that they multiply like crazy each year, and this year is no different.  They started sprouting out in different places about a foot away from the mother plant.  It’s incredible how they come back stronger every year even after a cold, nasty Canadian winter.  They are hearty little suckers!

As I watch these Tiger Lilies sprout their leafy greens, it made me think that this is very much like our spiritual journeys—sometimes we have to go through a hard time, just like these tough Canadian winters, for us to realize just how important some things are to us.  Sometimes we have to hit bottom in an area of our lives before we learn to lean on God and make him part of our lives before we grow stronger and sprout more shoots from our Heavenly Father.

Just like these Tiger Lilies, if we weather our storms we come back stronger and thicker ready to take on more challenges in our life.  Our roots become stronger in the word of the gospel.  We realize how important this is to our overall growth.

It’s written in 2 Peter 3:18, “But grow in the grace and knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. To him be the glory both now and to the day of eternity. Amen.”  And that is exactly what we have to do.  Grow in grace and knowledge of the power of the Lord and realize that he is our ticket to eternity.

I will soon be digging up these shoots and transplanting them to other parts of my yard, and it is the same for my growth in my spirituality.  After my last season of hardship was when I started writing these blogs, which is a sprout that has been transplanted to serve in another area—just like my yard.

It’s amazing how life can make sprouts in places you never dreamed of.  I failed writing in high school and hated writing like nothing else, and my marks reflected this.  Now, I could write two or three of these blogs in a day.  Why?  I have no idea where they come from and some days I sit down to write one thing and a totally different thing come out of my fingers as they type.  If I have to tell the truth, it is not me writing these blogs.  There is a much higher power that comes over me when I sit down to my computer.  You’d have to know me before hand to believe it, but I know my high school English teacher would know that it wasn’t me.

Just like my sprouts, you have them too.  We all get better as we age, just like the Tiger Lilies.  As you age, you can grow thicker in your spirituality as you learn to build a relationship with our Heavenly Father.  God is our way to be transplanted from this world to the spiritual world.  The shoots we sprout on Earth are our ticket to Heaven, but we must grow thick in our faith and believe that someday our hard Canadian winters are going to grow us into the people we are meant to become.

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