2.18.2015

Spring is in the Air



I know this doesn't sound very gratitude-y, but I would like to formally start a petition to skip the months of January and February next year.  Feel free to sign your name below.  Nebraska.  Dreary.  Cold.  Gray.  Bleh.  These last few months have been tough as it was dreary out and I felt dreary in.

But then the snow starts melting.

The birds start chirping.

Time change is one way the holy spirit works a change in me, and thank goodness because I was starting to feel like winter might never end.

And just like that, gratitude isn't something I'm striving for, something I should be doing, but something I'm living, breathing slower as the sun warms up more than my face.

If you're not feeling that this week, I dare you to take your eyes off this phone or your screen for a minute and just look out the window and notice.

This time of year, when the tulips are just pushing through, I always think of one of my favorite poems by E.E. Cummings.  You can read all of "In Just-" by clicking here.


After spring comes my favorite, SUMMER!  Start unpacking those flip-flops and check out these two workshops I'm doing in June!  So excited.

   



2.11.2015

Live Your Thanks Today

Photography by Curt Brinkmann
My own face squished up wet, next to her little tear-soaked cheek.  I hugged her and told her we would get brave together.

My daughter woke up in the middle of the night, scared of the "monster on her wall."   

We tip-toed up and touched the shadow together.  It wasn't until we got right up next to the source of her fear that she realized it wasn't real.  We laughed at the fear, and that helped too.

Whether you're three or 103, there's one way to see if your fear is real.

Get up close and personal with it.

Yeah, actually move toward it (insert awkward laugh here).  The anxiousness fades when we realize we don't need to get brave alone.  Get a buddy to be brave with you, laugh at the fear and take one itty bitty bolstered-step toward that thing that you're sure is holding you back.  Yes, some things we go through really are scary, but sometimes it's not all that scary after all.  And yes, sometimes when I act courageously it doesn't work out, but sometimes it works out in ways I couldn't have imagined.

I'm starting to see that my fear pops up most aggressively when I'm going to something that matters.  What if instead of using the fear as an indicator to run, I used it as an barometer, telling me to keep moving, keep trying to help?

We'll never know if the fear is real unless we take the courage God's giving us and act!  Take that little step and live your thanks today.

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I recently got an idea that seemed scary.  I wanted to share my friend Curt Brinkmann's photos here.  Because I was scared, I asked.  I am glad I did.  The little guy pictured above has a "God-given quality that makes everyone around him feel better."  Curt and his photography also have that quality.  Check out his new, beautiful website at http://www.lifesastoryphotography.com.