Friday, May 20, 2016

Enjoying “This” Day

The cool breeze washed over our faces as we stepped off the boat onto the tropical island.  What a beautiful sight to behold.

As far as the eye could see there were glorious trees and fields of flowers with an intoxicating aroma; I wasn’t sure what they were but was exhilarated with each breath I took. 

We settled into our suite that overlooked the balmy sea … billowing waves gently rippled toward the shore disappearing as they touched the white sand.  By now the sun was setting and the night grew quiet. 

Standing out on the terrace I watched as sweethearts walked the moonlit beaches hand-in-hand.  Oh what a beautiful day, one that will live in my memory … 

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Memories of Other Days 

Yep, it was a day in my memory only … rather, one that I wished happened!  Oh, there was an actual tropical island that we were supposed to visit when we were on a cruise ship, but the excursion was canceled due to a hurricane while we were at sea.  My not so joyful memory included me sitting in a port hole in our state room, with my life jacket on as the waves crashed over the top of the ship. Even though things didn’t go as we planned we found a way to entertain ourselves and enjoyed the journey. 

As you could tell a romance writer I’m not, but a visionary I certainly am.  When life gets a little “overboard” I need to get out my life gear and stand on the solid ground of the Word of God which allows me to enjoy each day He has given me.  

In the Midst  

Lately my “daily routine” has been squeezed with round the clock care for Jewel.  It’s not a burden, but a situation that has to be dealt with properly so we can give her the best care and still do everything else we need to throughout the day.  Having done this twice before with other rescues you’d think we would have this down to a science, but each animal is different. 

Every session of feeding, meds, bathing, massages (to stimulate the organs) and “juicing” takes between 2-3 hours, and doing that 3-4 times daily leaves little time for much else. 

I feel like my hands are always in water.  After washing about 30-40 syringes, feeding bowls and nappies each day, we decided to buy a few baby bibs to help keep her cleaner.  Dear Madge would be proud of my dishpan hands.  

Actually my husband and I have come to enjoy each “this” day along our journey, and quality time together has been quite calming in the midst of it all.  

Enjoying This Day

One day when we finished giving Jewel breakfast, instead of getting right to work I decided to take a new approach to my day by doing something to take my mind off the situation.  Call it a diversion if you like.  This isn’t new for me, but something I do often based on my life and career.

Right now I’m in the process of coming up with things to enter into this summer’s county fair. One of the experiments I’m doing is drying flowers with clean, unused cat litter.  It was something I had seen in a video so I wanted to check it out for myself as an alternative to the expensive Silica gel crystals I’ve been using.  Hey, I’ve got the litter anyway right? (When I see how it turns out I’ll be sharing it on Favored Crafts.) 

So I gathered my “project” and went outside for an hour to regroup.  The time was well spent and my conversation with the Lord was wonderful as I enjoyed “this day” He had given me.  

It was picturesque with birds singing, the wind blowing gently and NO bugs!  I couldn’t have set it up more perfectly, and even tried videotaping the scene when the birds suddenly stopped making a sound.  They must have known they were being recorded. I’m telling you they didn’t make one chirp! 

Coming back inside it was time to get into the swing of things again, but spending those sixty minutes doing something different did me a world of good.  I was able to relax and calmly finish out the day with energy to spare.   

Did I feel guilty about taking some time out of the day to focus on something that I loved to do?  Not a bit.   You see, God gives us each “this” day to fulfill something in His plan, and enjoying it as we journey is part of the favor He distributes with each sunrise. 

It’s Okay to Enjoy Life 

Did you know that it’s OK to enjoy life?  As a matter of fact, that’s one of the main reasons why Jesus came to earth.  My husband’s favorite verse is John 10:10 (AMPV) and it describes exactly how believers should be living. 

“The thief comes only in order to steal and kill and destroy. I (Jesus) came that they may have and enjoy life, and have it in abundance (to the full, till it overflows).

Our lives are to be lived to the fullest every day, not just on holidays or when a great event is going on in our lives.  Instead of making joy a part of our day, we go about doing the same thing day after day, week after week, etc. drudging life and all it has to offer. 

This isn’t what God wants for our journey with Him.  When we forget to include joy into our busy schedule we become the joy stealers we complain about in other people.  What kind of partner does that make for Jesus as He travels with us along our journey? 

A verse that I like to claim in the morning helps me put things into perspective from the moment I put my foot on the floor.  Here’s my version of Psalm 118:24. 

This is the day that the Lord has made.
I will rejoice and I will be glad in it. 

Part of being able to be glad when things look bad is having God’s word engrafted into our thinking.  Knowing that God wants you to enjoy your life isn’t the same as comprehending and living joyfully.  Not living in joy is a favor breaker, because it is telling the world that Jesus’ life failed somewhere along His journey.  Since we know that’s not true, joyful living falls on our choosing to live by the Word. 

You Are Blessed with Life 

Do you realize how blessed you are that you woke up this morning, even with all the junk that is going on in the world?  That doesn’t happen to everyone.  
When my husband was a boy he and his mom said their goodnights and went to bed.  He woke up, she didn’t … but she enjoyed her journey and learned to laugh, joke and have fun through the most difficult times as a young widow raising her son.   

If we’re still here, our journey gets to continue, and we have the choice of whether or not we enjoy it.  Every time we awake it’s an opportunity for the Lord to show favor on His children in a new way for a new day. 

“Through the LORD’s mercies we are not consumed, because His compassions fail not. They are new every morning; great is Your faithfulness.” (Lamentations 3:22-23 NKJV) 

“Many sorrows shall be to the wicked; but he who trusts in the Lord, mercy shall surround him. (Psalm 32:10 NKJV)

“For You, O Lord, will bless the righteous; with favor You will surround him as with a shield.” (Psalm 5:12 NKJV) 

We are surrounded, covered and overshadowed with promises of God as His children.  The Lord’s mercy/grace is new each day, and so is His favor.  I love that.  These gifts should cause us to rejoice and be glad don’t you think? 

Endurance Isn’t Part of the Blessing 

It’s easy to get caught up in the daily routine of life and forget to take time to enjoy what is right in front of our eyes.  We ask God to “help us endure this” while we trudge through the day.  Nothing seems to be particularly great, so thinking about adding peaceful or fun time-outs isn’t even in our mind-set. 

People with this mentality don’t enjoy their jobs, don’t have many friends and really only tolerate their families.  I remember one lady telling me that she loved her kids, but didn’t like them.  If being around people who never have any joy is hard for me, I can imagine how much it grieves the Holy Spirit. 

God isn’t looking for His children to endure, but thrive no matter what the trial because we know He is right there with us.  Remember He knows our pain because He is the One who endured it on the cross. 

Since part of our journey together is helping people and pets, I try to find good things in any situation but sometimes it doesn’t quite turn out as expected.  

It was the last feeding of the night (around 10 pm) and I was placing things in position when I knocked the napkins off the folding table. 
When I bent down to pick them up I noticed I also knocked my bread that was wrapped from dinner onto the floor.  Retrieving it I took a bite and began to take my seat.  It didn’t take long before the entire situation was turned around. 

The scene is set with hubby holding Jewel in position for the feeding waiting for me to sit down. 
With the bread in my mouth I realized I needed a quick drink of water, but that’s not exactly what came out of my lips.   

“Ooh, I need a dink.” (Did I say dink, here it comes I thought …) 

“You need a dink, you are a dink!” 

With water now exploding out of my mouth from laughter … 

“Why did you call me a dink? I could have choked.  The bread was in my throat.” 

“I’m sitting here with her nails digging into my arm and you need a drink.” 

I was laughing so hard I got hot then stood up and walked over to the other side of the room to turn on the fan; mind you he’s still holding a cat patiently waiting to eat. 

“Oh, when I’m hot it’s the medicine, but when you’re having a personal summer … look out Jewel, 40 below in here!” 

I don’t know what Jewel thought about all this as she watched, but it was the best feeding we had for her yet.  Thank you Lord for those baby bibs.  We only used five napkins as opposed to the fifteen or more for the previous feedings and she didn’t have any on her body (except what hubby got on her head.) No wonder parents like them. 

“This” Day as Every Day is a Gift 

Even though I don’t feel I’ve accomplished all I wanted to do or things haven’t gone as planned, I enjoy every “this” day God graciously gives.

Going to parties, events and activities are great things to look forward to, but taking time to “smell the meat” (okay that’s not how it goes, but you smiled didn’t you) can bring a whole lot more happiness into a rather routine life.   

Somewhere in the middle of things learn to be thankful. Rejoice in the simplicity of the “little” things that God allows along the journey. God has given us the power to enjoy life if we choose.  Make a decision to enjoy your life and make a difference for the Kingdom.  

“As for every man to whom God has given riches and wealth, and given him power to eat of it, to receive his heritage and rejoice in his labor – this is the gift of God.” (Ecclesiastes 5:19 NKJV) 

Today is the only time you will have to enjoy “this” day, so why not make the most of it?  Don’t wait until something happens before you appreciate the *vapor time you have here on earth.  Be sure that with every encounter you leave with something positive as you journey with Jesus.  (*James 4:14) 

This Week’s Challenge:
Enjoying This Particular Day 

Gaining a new approach and attitude on how God wants us to live our lives will cause His favor to flow regularly because we comprehend He is in control for our journey. 
Learn to enjoy everything that you are doing, by changing how you look at it. 

Our challenge this week is to enjoy “this” day, meaning every day that God gives us life here on earth find something good in it and give Him praise. 

In 1 Peter 3 the Bible talks about how we are to enjoy one another and be a blessing.  We are to enjoy life as a testimony of what God’s covenant means to us in the way we act and live. God isn’t asking us to love the trials, but to find something to give Him praise for while we are traveling through them.  With God good is always happening, we just need to let it be a part of whatever we’re experiencing. 

We’re not always going to be able to take those nice tropical island vacation trips to get away when we’re stressed, but that’s ok when you’re walking with Jesus.  No matter how God works things out it will always include His mercy, grace and favor on those who joyfully trust Him. 

“Be cheerful no matter what; pray all the time; thank God no matter what happens. This is the way God wants you who belong to Christ Jesus to live.” (1 Thessalonians 5:16-18 MSG) 
Rejoice, be glad … this day God chose to give you “life” favor. 

 This Is The Day by Planetshakers 

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Until next time, be glad for the favor of life itself! 

“I came to give life abundant with favor .”
Jesus Christ 

*Unless noted, the names in articles are changed to protect the individual(s) privacy. 

Note: When used the words satan or devil are not capitalized deliberately, because we give him no place in our lives. 

Disclaimer: Article information is not meant to be used as treatment for mental or physical issues, but geared toward spiritual awareness. 

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