Together in Hard Places

25
Nov
2014

Making the Best Yes Decisions 

I am in love with Chapter Seventeen, “The Very Best Yes,” in The Best Yes.

There have been so many great pieces to this book, really – so many, but as we close out the book study this week I am almost in dumbfounded awe of how this chapter is speaking to my worn out heart.

I am in a season where I am having to make some big decisions, decisions that may really make me sad, make others disappointed and honestly be life changing, but not necessarily positive.  It is a hard place to be in.

But as I read about Lysa and her sharing the experience with her daughter and the big heartbreak, it really brought me back to those times when I could barely function because of so much angst. I haven’t been in that place for a long time, but there are many times I get close to that place.  Do you know what I mean?

I shared a while back about a period of time when I struggled with hopelessness to a big degree and it was debilitating.  Those are hard times.  I’ve struggled with losing a parent, an in-law, putting one through alcohol rehabilitation treatment and a few other big events that can knock you down.  Life is hard, but I have to remember this, and I shared it yesterday:

“Together is a really good word.  Together is what we need when we hit tough patches in life.  Making decisions when life is making you cry shouldn’t be done alone.”

I am the first to admit, I am a loner and I like to do this myself.  I hate to ask for help.  This really struck me as well the other day on the Facebook page as one of the other moderators shared this definition of herself:

“As someone who can be a reclusive, overwhelmed introvert.”

I almost spit out my coffee – that is me!!!  Seriously!

And it’s not really all that great of a thing.  I try to do this thing called life on my own, even to the point of not letting my husband know a lot of those things that are bothering me.  It’s easier to just take care of it myself.  Wrong, I know.

So if there is one thing, ONE BIG THING I have learned in this book, it is this:

“In those moments when we feel swept away in a current of fast-moving feelings, we need to pause.  Wait.  Let someone else be there as a voice of clarity.”

And then this:

“Smart enough to know to pause and take extra time when life takes on extenuating circumstances that are hard.”

I want to tattoo that on my palms.

“When we can rise up on the wisdom of others and get a new view of our situations, our next steps seem a little clearer.”

I need relationships that are deeper, more frequent and more meaningful.  Period.  I honestly feel having those will help me with my Best Yes decisions.  Does that resonate with you too?

So as I wrap up this study and our time together, I want you to know how much I value you – those of you I may meet in person and many of you who I never will.  You make my life sweet and rich in ways that no one else can understand who does not have an online community.

I feel your presence as I write on the page of my blog and even when I am admitting things I would rather tuck away deep in my heart…. I do it anyhow, because I know you won’t make assumptions or accusations.  You are sweet and appreciative of me bearing myself with you and hoping that it may help another mom, somewhere out there who feels alone and hurt.

Please join us tonight for the LIVE Facebook chat at 6:15 PM Pacific time/ 9:15 PM Eastern time.  We will share, have some worship music and celebrate this journey together.  Thank you so much for coming along!

Week Six – The Best Yes

24
Nov
2014

 weeksix

We are on the final home stretch.   I know many have struggled to keep up with the reading, I so encourage you to at least read the chapters for the end to finish strong with us.  I will not lie…. I will be pushing myself to read the end of the book to get ready for my final blog post tomorrow as well as prepare for the Facebook Chat at 6:15 PM Pacific.

Get prepared for talk of insecurities, growth, togetherness and more.

This week we are reading Chapters 16-19 of The Best Yes.  

This quote touched my heart and almost made me cry (okay, I was having an extremely emotional day and it did make me cry!)

“Together is a really good word.  Together is what we need when we hit tough patches in life.  Making decisions when life is making you cry shouldn’t be done alone.”

Doesn’t that just nearly melt your heart?

I want to learn to be wise, seek wisdom from those who are further in the journey than myself and then share my experiences with those coming up behind me.

Join us tomorrow evening on the Facebook page for a fun time of sharing, refreshment and celebrating our last week of The Best Yes!  I’ll remind you one more time tomorrow during my blog post – but you can mark it on your calendar now.  :-)

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Are You Choosing to See?

18
Nov
2014

Week-Five-Best-Yes

I think I often miss my Best Yes because I am too busy; not open to His whisper and do not allow Him to open my mind to new experiences or to stretch myself.  It is a shame now that I can evaluate it and see.

There is a term I wish I knew more about in my life called “white space” or “margin“.  I am sure you know exactly what I am talking about, that time that is unscheduled.

I think I have some of it but often time my ‘time’ is structured to the point that I cannot allow anything to go outside the schedule.  I wonder how many chances I end up wasting that I may have been able to say YES to?

I loved this line:

“Don’t waste it.  Let it make you aware.  Be an extension of God’s love right now.”

To be honest, as I write here, I am almost tearing up because I feel there are many opportunities I have missed.  So many times I have been too busy to see.

I am thankful I am being made aware now – some areas of my life need to change and what does that look like?

It may mean saying no to more things so I can have time to hear from Him.

It may mean saying Yes to some things that really matter or that I know are my Best Yes.

I am not entirely sure yet, but I am open to change, even though it can be one of the hardest things to do.  Change…. we all say we want it but when it comes down to it, we fight against it.  This line really resonated with me:

“Saying no isn’t an unnecessary rejection.  It’s actually a necessary protection of our Best Yes answers.  We will have a very hard time paying attention to those Best Yes answers if we live lives that are completely spent.”

Oh, how I feel this line was written just for me!  I am in a season where I am feeling spent…. and I know God has me right here to get my attention so that I may be FORCED to make some changes.  He does that sometimes, do you know what I mean?

Being Present

I am often not very present with my family, my friends or even myself.  I am task orientated and can get so focused on completing things that I miss the community and relationship.  I have made improvements, but still have a long way to go.

I think a Best Yes for me might be to read Bob Goff’s  Love Does – I am putting it on my list!  There were many tid-bits that Lysa shared from that book that really resonated with my soul…..I love how God uses people to help us grow!

Do you find yourself looking for big directional signs?

Week Five – The Best Yes

17
Nov
2014

weekfive

This week we are talking about avoiding the traps of people pleasing.  I honestly never really thought of myself as a people pleaser, but now that I am examining different areas of my life and why I feel led to say YES to so many, I can see that I fit in as a people pleaser too.

If pleasing people were my goal, I would not be Christ’s servant.  Galatians 1:10 NLT

This week we are reading Chapters 13-15 of The Best Yes.  

I loved listening to these chapters while I drove back ALONE in my car from doing an essential oils class last week.  It’s not very often, as I know you all can relate, that I am in the car alone with silence enough to do such a marvelous thing!

I went back and re-read the chapters briefly, underlining and highlighting so I can share some key points from my perspective with you all tomorrow.  I love how our discussions on the Facebook page bring in so many different viewpoints and really open up the discussion.  I think about things that were not even on my radar when someone else shares from their heart.  Community is key in getting even more out of a study.  :-)

I was especially touched with this line of the book this week, “Don’t waste it.  Let it make you aware.  be an extension of God’s love right now.”   I want to keep this close to my heart and be used – open to His whispers.

Did you see where our blog, this space is opening up to care for another Compassion child??!!!!  I am thrilled.  Everyone is making a difference, every little bit and I am so thankful I was aware and open to hear His whisper to use this place for that calling.

“We want big directional signs from God.  God just wants us to pay attention.”  pg 170

If you are participating in the extra reading of Proverbs, you’ll want to be sure to read Proverbs 26 – 31.

I will see you back here tomorrow with my thoughts on this weeks reading.  Be sure to hop over to the Facebook page and share in the community!

Expectations, Disappointment and Reality

11
Nov
2014

4tuesday2 copy

I think this week’s reading will really open your eyes to the reality of where we are as moms and women.  At least for me, it has been pivotal in my understanding how I feel I get “trapped” into saying yes so many times, when I know I should say no.

Disappointment is very real in my life and this quote really hit my heart:

“The space between our expectations and our realities is a fertile field, and it’s the perfect place to grow a bumper crop of disappointment.”

To be perfectly authentic and vulnerable to you all…. I struggle with this constant feeling of disappointment because my expectations are not truly understood by me, or I get visions of what something ‘could’ be like and then it is not.  I can see how this all plays out now in my desire to say yes to even those things that are not my Best Yes.

To be even more honest, I feel that in the past six to eight months, I have lived in that space where constant disappointment drains me dry.  I don’t want to be in this place….. I am not a nice person in this place and certainly am not the best me.  Isn’t that what we all truly desire, to be the best ‘us’?

To be the best me, I have to understand what makes me tick, what is missing and where I need to change.  I have realized that using Lysa’s guidelines when determining new opportunities will help me.

What makes an expectation unrealistic? When an opportunity stretches me to a breaking point, it becomes unrealistic.  Usually for me the areas I have to consider are:

*My time.  The schedule required to meet all the demands of this opportunity isn’t in line with the time I have to invest.

*My ability.  I’m not equipped with the necessary skills to carry out the functions of this opportunity.

*My money.  I can’t afford the financial responsibilities that comes along with this opportunity.

*My passion.  The responsibilities of this opportunity evoke a sense of dread instead of fulfillment in my heart.

*My season.  There is something that must take a higher priority during this season of my life, therefore the timing is off for me to take this opportunity.

The Best Yes, pg 243

The one that I identify with the most is My Passion.  I have to say there are several things in my life now that are not fitting in with the passion I once felt, thus draining me and giving me a sense of dread.

How do I fix this?  Prayer and determining how to decline even more opportunities that come my way, which in fact need to be given those small no’s.

“Give the best of who you are to what you’re already committed to.”  pg 123

This little gem is what I am keeping near.  Is that not the type of whisper we all need to hear?  I want to give my best to what I am already committed to, which will mean saying no to many other things that tantalize my interest.

What caught your eye the most in this week’s reading so far?  I would love to hear from you.

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